"Let me—Let me—Let me," Rodney says, the first time they talk about fucking. It gets hot and heavy fast, about twenty seconds after John brings it up, mumbles it out, mouth pressed against Rodney's throat, hoping Rodney will just slide his hand a little lower and not interrogate him about it. Rodney doesn't. His breathing gets gratifyingly—flatteringly—stuttery, and his hands go tight on John's waist.
Rodney has lube and about five dozen condoms in his bedside table and he scatters them everywhere when John turns and slides off the bed to suck his cock. Then he shoves John off and sticks a couple of fingers in his own ass, almost in one motion.
"Um—" John says. It's not exactly what he meant. Then again, maybe this is a better idea for the first time, and he doesn't want to be selfish. Then Rodney crams another finger in there and John is definitely, completely on board.
He doesn't want to complain about it. Rodney turning around and snapping out "Can you just knock it off with the Colonel-Dreamy-let's-make-out face and please please—oh." is the best thing that's happened to him in years and Rodney didn't laugh when John blew him that first time, even though John could tell he wanted to. Rodney doesn't even get bent out of shape when John explains—not in bed, he's not an asshole—that the whole thing has to be a secret; it's great, it's perfect, except that Rodney doesn't want to fuck him.
John asks; it takes him a couple tries to force it out, but it comes out pretty smooth when he says it: "Wanna fuck me?" leaning back against Rodney's desk and trying to look available and a little slutty.
"Oh," Rodney says. "No—not...no."
"Oh," John says. "Yeah, okay."
He fucks Rodney instead; gropes his ass and comes inside him and Rodney smiles at him after, a huge, happy grin and presses himself in next to John and they doze a little, until Rodney has to take off. John showers and gets dressed again and tells himself it's stupid to mind. Rodney is an amazing fuck and has a slick, squeezy, beautiful ass and it's not something to get greedy about.
Rodney is ridiculously secretly nice to him, hooking him up with pretzels when he has them and stroking his fingers along the sensitive edge of John's shoulderblades when John can't sleep. John doesn't bring up fucking again; he would never—he doesn't like thinking about making Rodney to do something he doesn't like. He did it a time or two, without knowing, to girls, and felt like scum when he found out.
He doesn't mind at first, he really doesn't. He fucks Rodney, they give each other blowjobs, they do a little kissing, and they fuck a lot—Rodney on his back, Rodney on his stomach, Rodney bent over a couch or a bed or a desk—John is best friends with the small of Rodney's back, the last few nubbles of his spine, the way his fists clench when John really gives it to him, and John does, dedicates himself to fucking Rodney all the ways he likes, hard and slow and a little rough, sometimes, all the ways John used to think about some nameless, faceless guy doing him, back when it was too fucking dangerous to think about letting it happen. He had never thought about it with Rodney—mostly he'd thought about just sucking face with him, about pressing against him without worrying he'd get hard and Rodney might feel it, about being able to stay overnight with him, about morning sex.
John is pretty sure they're in love, so it's too bad that Rodney is a selfish sack of shit in bed. John tries to stop thinking that, because he really wants to just enjoy finally having someone who makes him feel the way Rodney does, but the sex thing sticks in his throat and, more and more, he can't even really enjoy sliding inside Rodney because it makes him remember Rodney's mouth, the faint, quickly covered look of distaste when he'd thought about fucking John. John hadn't asked again.
He starts to leave sometimes, after they fuck, just makes up some excuse and gets out of there, because Rodney's half asleep, his stomach smudged with come, and he looks so fucking relaxed and happy and he sucked John's cock for about twenty seconds before wanting to be fucked. He looks a little surprised when John leaves, but not upset.
"Sure," he says, sleepy and sweet.
"Okay," John says, and kisses him on the cheek, because he just can't help it.
John puts a finger inside his ass; he's all alone, in bed. It's not how he pictured it at all. He rolls over on his stomach and presses his face into the pillow and fingerfucks himself determinedly; he doesn't need Rodney for it. He adds another finger, just to prove he can. It hurts. There, John thinks, he wouldn't even like it much, it would just be uncomfortable and awkward and a little painful. It's not sexy.
What happens is Lieutenant Jenner gets killed; she's only 28 and John barely knew her. Lorne trained her up to lead a team and John takes one look at his face and says he'll look through her stuff for Security Issues. Security Issues means pornography, means pictures of the person you were fucking around on your fiance with, means shit that might embarrass your family or destroy your parents. It also means real security issues, but the SGC checks the luggage they send back before releasing it, as well.
Lieutenant Jenner has a whole bunch of porn and a brand new, still sealed in plastic dildo. Or maybe a vibrator. John's never seen one in person, and never been clear about how you tell the difference unless it's actively vibrating. It's a plastic cock. It's black and serious-looking and not girly or anything. It's bulbous and smooth and a little realistic, but not too realistic; it doesn't have molded veins or hairy balls hanging off the end of it. John donates the porn to the stash that's kept in a box near the rarely used transporter on level three, and turns over her other two dildos to Krelman and Mersky on the biohazard team, whom he likes to believe destroy them, but there's probably a lucrative market in refurbished, decontaminated dildos on Atlantis, a market John prefers to know nothing about.
He keeps the black dildo. It's factory-sealed. It doesn't have glitter in it, it's not shaped like an animal; it looks like something you could buy at a hardware store. It looks like a tool. He puts it in the bottom of his dresser, still in the plastic shell.
He respects Rodney's boundaries, and Rodney does the same for him. There's no casual, normal way, John finds, to hint that he wants Rodney to get over it and put it in his ass, so he says nothing. Maybe Rodney has some kind of ass neurosis. The point is, John has a giant—well, respectably sized—dildo he can get out and use whenever he wants. Once, after giving it to Rodney twice in one night, Rodney's head tossed back in what John's not flattering himself to call ecstasy, he goes so far as to slit open the packaging. It needs to charge; turns out it vibrates, too.
John's not an idiot, and one of the lieutenants in Afghanistan used to get Ricki Lake tapes from his sister—and Sally Jessy Raphael, which John preferred—so he knows he's supposed to be open and communicative and tell Rodney that sometimes the thought of fucking him just reminds John that Rodney doesn't seem to be that sexually attracted to him. He's always closing his eyes and wanting John to do him on his stomach, and he doesn't let John blow him anymore. John gets one fucking blowjob a month and always has to finish in Rodney's ass or on his stomach, and then there's the way Rodney sometimes waves him out of the room after, as though John has something better to do at 1am than get to snuggle up next to Rodney and enjoy the afterglow for five minutes. Unfortunately, John is pathetically, frantically into Rodney, so instead of taking a stand, he always just gives up and starts fucking him, and it feels so good he wonders why he's so angry all the time, until it's over and he's back in his room, reminded that Rodney thinks he's too ugly to fuck, or whatever is wrong with him.
Fine, he thinks, one night, fine, and gets out the dildo. He wasn't really pretending he wouldn't ever try it, since he set up the charging cradle in one of the sliding closet compartments the first week he had it. He takes off his clothes and flicks on the vibrator function—it's a nice, low, powerful grumbling buzz, not ticklish at all. It makes the hair on his arms stand pleasantly on end. He rubs it over his nipples, his stomach, up his cock, sucks on it a little, the way he'd suck on Rodney if Rodney would let him, instead of just flipping over and wanting to be fucked the minute John's mouth gets near his dick. It tastes faintly of rubber, but it's a good size, and he enjoys the feel of it in his mouth more than he'd thought he would.
He comes with the dildo just inside his ass, stretching his hole, his heart pounding , the vibrating thing on the lowest setting, a heavy throb that makes him push his heels against the bed, trying to get more contact, pumping it inside him just a little.
Crap, he thinks. He had been hoping he wouldn't like it.
The dildo helps him figure out a few new ways to make Rodney come, his fists clenched in the sheets, saying "Oh god, oh fuck, do it now—" He likes a lot of the same stuff Rodney likes, but it's not like it's complicated or weird to like a couple fingers during a handjob and it's not exactly a hardship to kneel between Rodney's knees and have to press up against his ass repeatedly, cock slipping up against his hole.
He doesn't blow Rodney off to fuck himself with a dildo or anything, he doesn't go right back to his room after fucking Rodney and shove the dildo in his ass just to be contrary about it; he just gets it out when Rodney's busy with some project or, more and more, when he's jerking off. It feels good—different. It hadn't ever occurred to John that jerking off could get boring, but the dildo makes things really interesting. He jerks off a couple more times a week than he has been, just because it feels amazing with the dildo in him, all the way, working his hole.
So it's pretty much a bummer when there's an electrical surge and it gets fried. It's not like it's such a huge deal, since he can still use it without the vibration, and it's not like the vibration really got him off except that it did.
There are four more electrical surges over the next three days, and Rodney gets more annoyed every time John sees him, until he stops by the lab and sees Rodney's feet sticking out from under a console, every surface of the lab littered with crystals.
"Oh for god's sake," Rodney says loudly, and there are assorted clunking and plinking noises, "I know your giant dildo isn't working, but maybe you could use something a little more low tech and give me five minutes of space—ow, Jesus Christ—"
"How did you—are you fucking spying on me?"
"Oh, it's—" Rodney says, emerging from under the console with a giant pink welt on his forehead. "I thought you were Zelenka."
"He's been hovering around," Rodney says slowly, "um, spying on, what?"
"You have a dildo?" Rodney says.
"Um," John says. "No."
Rodney looks around quickly; the lab is empty and they're at the far end, away from the doors, but Rodney lowers his voice almost to a whisper. "Why do you have a dildo?" he says.
"Because I. you know, I use it," John says.
"What—" Rodney hesitates. "What for?"
John looks away, too annoyed at himself for saying anything to answer. Rodney frowns at the console, and finally says, uncertaintly,
"Did you want to use it on me?"
"No, thanks," John says sharply and Rodney looks down, like John's the one being an asshole.
"Sorry," Rodney says.
"It's fine," John says briskly. "I don't mind."
"Oh," Rodney says.
Then Zelenka finally shows up and they stop talking.
Back before they started fucking, John used to tell himself Rodney wasn't hot; he wasn't like any of the other guys John had managed to fuck, always on furlough, carefully. He'd liked pretty guys who acted kind of gay—mostly because they were the only guys he could really tell were actually gay. He fucked those guys, if they wanted it, or blew them, or just fooled around a little. He didn't let them fuck him, because it seemed—dangerous. No one had ever asked.
Rodney wasn't pretty and he didn't act gay, not in the way that John could tell: he didn't wear really tight clothes or lip gloss and he didn't like fancy restaurants or disco or mixed drinks with fruit in them or Cher, but John was hot for him and he trusted him, more than anyone he'd ever managed to pick up by leaning up against a bar and looking a little shy and ordering a guy another cosmo.
He goes by Rodney's quarters a few days later to have sex, knowing Rodney won't bother him about the dildo thing, because Rodney doesn't care much beyond getting John's cock in his ass. It's a compliment, John tells himself, fixing his hair in the mirror. Yeah.
Rodney lets him in, but seems uncharacteristically nervous.
"Look, I just—uh," he says, "If you're fucking someone else, I want to use condoms."
"I'm not," John says. They talked about this. They're exclusive.
Rodney shakes his head irritably. "Well, I know you're not using it on yourself."
"Using what," John says, meaning he doesn't want to talk about it.
"The dildo," Rodney says. "The—. Who gave it to you? If there's someone else—"
"I just use it on myself," John says.
"In my asshole," John says flatly.
"Oh," Rodney says.
"Do you want to fuck?" John says.
"Sure," Rodney says. He takes his shirt off slowly, frowning down at the buttons. Then he gets with the program and pulls John down on the bed and spreads his legs and starts fingering himself and things move pretty fast after that.
On the way back to the gate on the next mission, Rodney says,
"I can fix it for you. If you want."
"The. thing," Rodney says.
"The—oh," John says. "You don't have to."
"I don't mind," Rodney says. "If you—" he hesitates. "I don't mind."
John shrugs, but later on he brings the dildo by Rodney's room, stuffed in the bottom of his gym duffle, just to see what Rodney will do.
Rodney stares at it, frowning. Snaps open the end and twists some wires apart and swaps in a few new components and fixes the whole thing in about five minutes, flicking on the vibrator function for a few seconds, then flicking it off. He stares at it, turning it over in his hands.
"Thanks," John says.
"You washed it, right?" Rodney says.
"You know what? Forget it," John says. "I don't know why I even—"
"Can I watch?" Rodney says, low, staring down. He doesn't say anything else and when John doesn't answer, he puts the dildo down on the edge of the desk and looks away, out the window.
Rodney's lube is underneath his pillow; John's hands shake a little when he flips it open and Rodney's head snaps around, his eyes wide. John takes off his clothes, quickly, before he wimps out, and sits down on the bed, shoves Rodney's pillow up against the wall and leans back against it. Rodney wipes his palms on his knees, staring.
John's embarrassed, but he gets hard anyway when he turns on the vibrator. He doesn't try to make it sexy for Rodney or anything, definitely doesn't suck on it, just runs it down over his cock a few times and then lubes it up and starts working it into his ass. He arches his back involuntarily, feet sliding on Rodney's blankets, which are scratchy, and when he looks up Rodney's leaning forward, so intent that John closes his eyes, starts pumping the dildo in his ass. When he opens them again, Rodney's leaning forward, elbows on his knees; he's in shadow, biting his lip, and John is suddenly so, so close.
"Rodney—" he says, voice cracking, and Rodney's across the room, dragging John forward by the hips and falling to his knees, shoving his mouth over John's cock and sucking hard. John's knees fall open and his hands fist in Rodney's hair and he comes hard, groaning.
"Thank you," Rodney says, after. "That was—" he swallows. "Thanks."
"Do you want—"
"No, no, that's okay," Rodney says. "It's fine. I'm pretty tired actually."
John puts on his clothes and goes home.
The next time they fuck, Rodney bottoms. The next time and the next time and the next time after that. In the shower, bent over John's couch, hands and knees on Rodney's bed, Rodney on his back underneath John, like it was John's idea and Rodney makes hot, helpless noises and jerks himself off while John fucks him. John goes on missions and hangs out in the lab and goes running with Ronon and does a couple hours of babysitting for Teyla here and there and is finally in a gay relationship with a guy he loves who can keep it a secret and John's too much of an asshole about the sex to be able to enjoy it.
Rodney hated seeing him like that; Rodney isn't interested. John tells himself it doesn't matter, not really, and fucks Rodney another ten or twelve times, because he wants him to be happy. John is pretty amazing at assfucking; that's what all the data says.
It's fine until Rodney sees his face in the mirror, another twenty times down the line, when they've been messing around, just out of the shower, and Rodney is pressed face first against the outside of the shower stall, John thinks. When he grabs the lube he lets his face fall into grim boredom, going-through-the-motions, just for a second, except that Rodney's twisted his head around and sees.
"Nothing," John says, quickly. "Let's just—"
Rodney shakes off John's hand on his hip. "You don't want to do this," he says, and for a guy who isn't very perceptive about people, he gets it in one.
"It's not that," John says. "It's not—Rodney—" because Rodney shoots him a look and walks out to the bedroom and starts digging through his dresser and yanking on clothes. "I'm sorry," John says.
"What," Rodney says. "What is it, what did I do wrong this time?"
"Nothing," John says. "I just got—I'm sorry."
"What, because you hate fucking me and never said anything?" Rodney says coldly.
"I don't hate—it's just, you really want me to a lot—"
"I thought you liked fucking me!"
"I did," John says. "I do."
"But?" Rodney says belligerently.
"Just not every time," John mumbles.
"Oh," Rodney says.
"But I know you like it," John says. Rodney's looking at the floor.
"I—" he swallows and looks away. "Sorry, I—I always seem to get this part wrong."
"I thought—I just wanted you to feel good," Rodney says. "You seemed like maybe you were worried about fucking guys, and I didn't want you to feel—I—"
"Like some pussy bottom," John says. Rodney flinches.
"Right," he says, after a minute, nodding. "I mean, I like it—I'm a slut—"
"We're not like that," John says.
"Oh," Rodney says. He shoves his hands in his pockets. John lets himself tilt back against the wall, not sure what to say.
"Have you ever fucked a guy?" he says, finally.
"Yes, obviously," Rodney says, turning away and starting to shove things into meaningless stacks on his desk. "But you don't do that. It's fine."
"You don't even like to kiss," Rodney says.
"You don't let me," John says.
"I—what?" Rodney says. "You're the one who freaked out and stopped."
"You don't kiss," John says. "You won't fuck me, I'm not allowed to come in your mouth—" he sees Rodney's face, tired, angry, incredulous, fuck, Rodney's about two seconds from dumping him, and says, "it's okay, though."
"I kiss you," Rodney says. "We kiss."
"Not enough," John blurts out, before he can stop himself.
"Well, how often do you—"
"Every time," John says. "All—all the time."
Rodney stares at him. "You never said anything."
"I asked if you wanted to fuck me, I did the—with the dildo," John says, digging his fingernails into his palms. "What the fuck, you're the genius, right?"
"You were just being polite," Rodney says. "Or messing around with me, showing me what I couldn't—um—"
"So you fuck a lot of jerks," John says.
"Yeah," Rodney sighs. "I have a type."
Rodney sits down on the bed, squeezing the back of his neck. John thinks about the last time they fucked, when he pressed his face in between Rodney's shoulder blades, right where he had a few freckles left over from the sunburn he'd gotten on MX5-253, where they'd had to use their shirts to cover their faces to avoid offending the locals. The freckles are really hot.
John sits down on the bed.
"Hey," Rodney says.
"So—do you want to?" John says. Rodney's nodding before he finishes the sentence, and then they're kissing, Rodney's hands sliding up under his shirt and squeezing his waist. He kisses along John's jaw, hesitantly, at first, and then harder, down John's neck, tugging the collar of John's shirt out of the way to press a kiss against the hollow of his throat, and John hears his breath catch and slide into a hitching moan, and then Rodney presses him down against the bed and bites his collarbone, and starts groping his cock through his pants.
Rodney still gets kind of nervous when they get to the fucking, so much so that John has a couple fingers in his ass before Rodney wants to help, muscling in between John's thighs and sliding a thumb slowly in next to John's fingers. It stretches him open more than he's ever been before and it almost maybe hurts and then it doesn't at all and Rodney's helping him roll over and skimming his hands down over John's ass and thighs.
Rodney pulls at his hips, hitches them up a little higher.
"So I should—" he says.
"Now, yes," John says.
Rodney is nothing like the dildo; he's bigger and the angle is different, deeper than anything John could manage on his own; the lube used to make the dildo slippery and awkward to hold.
"Harder?" Rodney says, when he's been fucking John easily for what feels like no time, his hand splayed out on the small of John's back, their thighs brushing together gently.
"Maybe a little—" John says, "or not—ow," when Rodney pulls out and slams into him a couple times, pushing him down hard against the bed.
"Oh, crap, sorry," Rodney says, "sorry, are you, do you want—"
"Just—what you were doing," John says, and Rodney works his way back into a lazy rhythm that makes John groan and arch his back and grind down, makes his pulse pick up, but doesn't get him anywhere near coming.
"The vibrating really did it for you, huh?" Rodney says ruefully, some time later. He presses his forehead against John's back and John can feel that his face is damp with sweat. John's knees and hip joints are a little sore.
"Yeah, I, sorry," John says. This isn't how he pictured it. "You can stop if you're tired."
"Can I—" Rodney says.
"Oh, right, go ahead," John says, and Rodney presses in tightly against him, wraps one arm around his waist and comes four thrusts later with heavy gasp.
"Sorry," John says, when Rodney pulls out.
"About what?" Rodney said.
"I couldn't get off," John said. "Sorry for making a big deal out of it, we can just go back to—"
"Why don't you just shut up and let me blow you?" Rodney says, and does, fingerfucking him shallowly while he sucks. John squirms around meaningfully until Rodney adds a fourth finger, and then tips his head back off the mattress, takes a couple shuddery breaths, and lets himself feel everything.
"You should have just said you hated being on top," Rodney says, after.
"I didn't hate it," John says. "I just wanted to take turns, and you wouldn't, and then I got—I got—."
"Why didn't you just break up with me?"
"Why do you think?" John says. Rodney looks surprised, then inordinately pleased. John changes the subject. "You think I can learn to get off like that? On the bottom?"
"Maybe, I guess."
"You always do."
"Yeah, but I always just—did," Rodney says.
"Who cares?" Rodney says, punching his pillow into shape. "Next time we'll use the dildo."
"You don't like the dildo?" Rodney says, honestly disappointed. "Which is surprising, since it seemed like you really liked the dildo, and if you like the dildo, I like the dildo, unless—does that one have bad memories? Because I can get you another one. I'll get you six."
"That's okay," John said. "You don't have to do anything special or—"
"Did we not just have a whole fight and make up sex about how you wanted me to do special stuff to you?"
"I don't want you to do anything you don't like," John mutters.
"Yeah, fucking you and building you dildos is going to be torture," Rodney says.
"You're going to make them?" John says.
"Where else would I get them?"
"Well, you can order them from Earth," John says.
"For you, only the best," Rodney says.
"Oh," John says.
"Yeah, oh," Rodney says smugly.
John does learn to get off that way, and gains a new appreciation of Rodney's ass after the month and a half that he selfishly doesn't let John on top at all. Rodney makes him eight dildos; one for every day and one extra for the semi-monthly half leap day to keep the days the right length. They aren't glittery (except for one that is a little) or cutesy or shaped like anything but cocks, because Rodney asks what John wants. Not without effort, John learns to do the same.