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A Time-Honored Tradition

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John paused just short of the door to the lab and gathered his courage.

The laboratory wing was deserted at this hour, but he knew Rodney would still be there. He'd been loudly decrying the foolishness of Valentine’s Day and had been equally strident about Leap Day, complaining that romantic preoccupations made his scientists even more idiotic and less productive than usual. It was 2 a.m. now, so Leap Day was well underway.

Elizabeth had overridden Rodney, of course. She knew the importance of the dynamics binding so many of the Expedition together, strengthening them against fears of the million and one ways Pegasus seemed determined to kill them.

John opened the door.


Rodney looked up. “Oh, hi. What . . . isn't it late?”

“Yep.” John ambled over and leaned on the bench. “And yet, here you are.”

“I got caught up analyzing the new supernova Johannsen found.” Rodney yawned. “Lost track of the time.”

John studied him. “You don't often get to do actual astrophysics do you? Must make a nice change.”

“Rather than being a glorified odd job and repair man?” Rodney smiled thinly. “You could say that.” He scrubbed a hand through his hair then swiveled his chair around to face John. “Anyway, why are you still up?”

John straightened and took a breath. Now or never. He slid to his knees.

Rodney stared at him, clearly baffled. “What are you doing down there?”

“It's Leap Day,” John said tightly.

Rodney gaped at him with that deer-in-the-headlights look he got off-world when chieftains’ daughters came on to him. “What – you're proposing?”

“Yes, Rodney. In the time-honored tradition of Leap Day when subs can proposition tops. I'm asking to sub for you.” Christ knows why, he added to himself.

“But, but, where's all this come from?” Rodney asked plaintively. “You can't just spring a proposal like that on a person from out of nowhere.”

“Jesus, Rodney, I've been flirting with you for months. Years.

“You have?” Rodney looked genuinely perplexed.

John sighed. He raised one hand and ticked items off on his fingers. “The service, like bringing you coffee and meals. Or protecting you on missions.”

“Oh wait now, that last bit's just your job,” Rodney protested, folding his arms and tilting his chin up.

“Yeah, but I always make sure we share a tent and that none of the locals sexually harass you.”

Rodney gaped at him. “I thought you were cock-blocking me.”

John ignored the jibe. “Also I taste your food off-world and when we’re back here in the mess, I get extra so you can steal it off my tray.”

“You steal mine, too,” Rodney said defensively.

John clenched his fists. “Yeah, well maybe I'd like you to feed me, all right? Maybe it was the closest I could get with you being so fucking oblivious!”

They glared at each other, then John sagged back on his heels and dropped his head. He rubbed the back of his neck. “Should’ve known this was a terrible idea,” he muttered.

“I . . .” Rodney said hesitantly. “Look, I was just taken by surprise. I, um, I guess I’m flattered.”

John looked up quickly to see if he was taking the piss.

“No, really,” Rodney said. “But you must know there’s a reason I’m not . . . why I don’t. I’m just really bad at it. Look at what happened with Katie Brown! Disastrous.”

“Like I don’t know that,” John said, rolling his eyes. “C’mon, Rodney. We’ve been friends for ages and we work together, and play together. We get on fine. This’d just be another sort of play.”

“Hmm, well, when you put it like that . . . I’m pretty bad at keeping up the formalities, though. I just can’t be bothered with all that stuff; it’s why Katie gave up on me.”

John smirked. “Yeah, like I’m gonna be the world’s best sub.”

Rodney grinned. “Point.” He eyed John, a glint in his eye. “So, why don’t you put that mouth to use, since you’re down there?”

John gave him a jaundiced look. “Nope, ’cause my knees are killing me. I’m not twenty any more and these floors are hard as fuck.”

Rodney’s face fell and he lurched off his chair and grabbed John’s arm. “Oh damn, I didn’t think. I’m sorry. Here. Get up, come on.”

John let himself be hauled to his feet, wincing, and they stood there awkwardly.

“Right, so. How do you want to do this?” Rodney said eventually. “Oh, and if I hadn’t made myself clear, the answer’s yes.”

“Yeah, I gathered that when you told me to give you a blow job,” John said, wry.

“I take it that’s off the cards now?” Rodney was being cautious, on his best behavior.

“Well . . .” John looked around. “Not here, with these floors. Maybe in a bed or with a pillow for padding, if you can tear yourself away from the supernova for tonight.”

Rodney shut down his laptop with alacrity. “Anyway,” he said as they left the closed-up lab, “we should talk, and it’s not like there’s anyone else around at this hour. Switch your radio to input only.”

Talk, terrific. John toggled the switch, sighing, but in some ways it was easier like this, walking side by side and not having to make eye contact, the semi-darkened hallways lending intimacy and privacy.

“So what do you like?” Rodney asked. “I mean, we can do the usual checklists when we get back to my quarters, but give me the CliffsNotes version.” A pause. “Or is it easier if I go first?” John waved a yeah, kinda  hand and Rodney nodded and shot John a sidelong look. “Okay, well, I guess you already know I’m naturally bossy.” John grinned. “So I’ll enjoy ordering you around. I mean, when we’re playing, not on missions, I don’t want that 24/7 crap.”

John snorted. Yeah, right, like Rodney was going to stop ordering them all around on missions. It was cool – he only did it when it was a life or death crisis, or when it didn’t matter a damn.

“And, hmm, I really like getting blow jobs, preferably nice long slow ones.” Rodney’s voice had gone dreamy and a little husky, and John felt his cock fill in his pants. He really liked giving blow jobs, so that was fine with him.

“I have to warn you, I’m possessive,” Rodney continued, raising one finger in warning as they stepped into the transporter. “I’ll want you exclusively – your mouth and your ass.” He punched the symbol for their destination on the glowing diagram while John bit his lip and squirmed, adjusting himself. “Oh, and I’m pretty good with knots. I got into the spatial geometry of them in graduate school. So, you know,” he waved a hand, “bondage. I like that, too.”

The transporter doors opened and Rodney eyed John with a smirk. “I’m getting the impression that a few of those things appeal?”

“Yeah,” John said, surprised by how hoarse his voice had become. His cock was painfully erect, straining against his BDUs. Rodney stepped closer and fitted his hand over the hard length, stroking him through his pants and John’s head fell back against the wall of the transporter. He bit back a moan.

Rodney touched the panel that closed the doors again. “Which parts did you like best, John?” he asked, quietly intense, and Christ, if John’s knees weren’t still a little sore and Rodney hadn’t got his dick in a firm grip, he’d have gone down just like that.

“I like, um, being told what to do, and, and I like bondage, yeah, and being fucked, and, and I like sucking cock. A lot.”

Rodney’s hand tightened. “Not sucking anyone’s cock, John. Just mine.”

“Just, just yours,” John gasped, as Rodney’s grip tightened to the point of pain. “Just your cock.”

“Rodney gave him a last hard squeeze, then resumed stroking. “And pain, John? Do you like that?”

“Yeah.” John heard how wrecked his voice was. His hips kept arching helplessly forward to push his cock into Rodney’s grip. “And, and marks. Being marked.”

“Oh yes, we can certainly do that,” Rodney said, sounding pleased. “What about piercings. Do you like nipple play?”

“God, yeah,” John groaned. Another few minutes of this and he was going to come in his pants in the goddamn transporter. And that turned him on as well, Rodney making him come in a public place, even if it was 0-dark-hundred and behind a closed door. That anyone could open, his id added helpfully, and John shivered.

“You’re really getting off on this, aren’t you?” Rodney whispered. “Quite the exhibitionist, as long as it’s relatively safe. Well, we can work with that, maybe talk you through a fantasy. I’m not big on PDAs myself, but I’d like to feed you, sometimes.”

“Rodney, please,” John moaned. “Please, I need, I have to . . .”

“Not yet, John. Don’t come yet.” Rodney released his cock and opened the doors, then half dragged him down the hallway to his room, keying the door with frantic haste and pushing John through.

Inside, he slammed John back against the locked door and that was hot as well, the casual strength in those shoulders. Rodney grabbed his shirtfront in his left hand and pulled John’s face down for a heated, possessive kiss, then shifted his attention to John’s throat, his right hand deftly undoing John’s pants and sliding in to grip John’s cock for real, rubbing his thumb across the slick head and jerking him hard.

John grunted, overwhelmed by the double assault, his throat bared for Rodney’s mouth as Rodney bit and sucked, claiming him. He shuddered as Rodney’s hand milked him, and fuck, all those missions when he’d watched those hands holding things, twisting and manipulating, deft and expressive and so fucking hot. John came, hard, and Rodney stroked him through it, kissing him, teasing with his tongue. He was a damn good kisser.

“S-sorry,” John managed, when he could catch his breath. “Should’ve waited . . .”

“Yeah, no,” Rodney said tartly. “You did exactly what I wanted. I told you I’m not into the formalities. Anyway, it’s a testament to my ability to turn you on, so a successful experiment, I think.”

John snorted. “Experiment?” Typical.

“Yes, well. Leopard, spots, etcetera. Are you going to fall over if I let you go?”

“Nah,” John said happily. He was wiped out, but he felt great. He hadn’t come that hard in years.

“Yes, yes, the miracle of endorphins,” Rodney said, pushing him toward the bed and slapping him on the rump in passing. “Get your clothes off and then I want that blow job.” Rodney began stripping rapidly with an edge of desperation that was gratifying.

“Copy that, sir.” John fell back onto the bed and fumbled his boots and pants off, then sat up and eeled out of his uniform shirt and tee. Rodney had gone to the bathroom, so he got up on the bed, kneeling with his knees spread, facing the bathroom door, and waited.

Rodney paused, taking him in, his mouth quirking up. “Very nice.” He thrust a warm washcloth at John. “Here you go.” On impulse, John took it and then reached out and washed Rodney’s hands, cleaning carefully in between the fingers and a little up his forearms. He bent forward and kissed Rodney’s palms, one by one. Rodney sucked in a harsh breath, then dropped the washcloth onto the nightstand and pushed John back on the bed, straddling him, kissing the hell out of him until John was moaning.

“God, you’re so . . .” Rodney said, sitting back to stare at John. He sounded disbelieving, which was stupid, so John grabbed the washcloth and cleaned his cock and balls, spreading his legs and putting on a show, making Rodney’s jaw drop very satisfactorily.

“So, blow job?” John asked innocently.

“Hell, yeah,” Rodney said, knee-walking up his body and pulling a couple of pillows in under John’s head to prop him up a little, then positioning his cock over John’s lips. It was flushed dark and glistening, and John licked his lips, his mouth wet with anticipation.

“Oh my god. I think we won’t worry about the long slow stuff tonight. You’ll be lucky if I don’t just come all over your face.”

John’s eyes slammed shut and his mouth opened involuntarily as he strained forward and took Rodney’s cock in, groaning around it.

“Fuck, fuck,” Rodney hissed. “Take it, you bastard, yes, like that, suck me, oh god that’s good, more!”

John sucked for all he was worth and let Rodney fuck his mouth some. He didn’t have much control, lying back like this, and it felt wonderful.

Rodney’d been right about being close. He gasped out a warning and John made sure his eyes were shut as Rodney pulled back and came in hot spurts across John’s mouth and neck. John almost came a second time, but, as his knees proved, he wasn’t twenty any more.

He lay there, lazily licking come off his lips while Rodney slumped over him on all fours, panting. Then Rodney grabbed the washcloth and gently wiped his face and throat, before collapsing down on his back beside John.

After a while, Rodney turned his head. “Well, then. Promising?”

John grinned across at him. His body was humming with low-level arousal, but his cock was still out for the count. He felt amazing. “The experiment? I’d say so.”

They got themselves under the covers and John thought the lights off.

Rodney yawned widely and waved a hand. “Checklists in the morning. Sleep now.”

“Yes, Rodney,” John said. He wondered if it’d be okay to turn and put his head on Rodney’s chest, but Rodney had other ideas, draping himself over John, a warm, claiming weight.

John knew Rodney preferred sleeping on his front but he’d never been the mattress before. Well, except that time on Seleria when Rodney’d had a head injury and hypothermia. John found he liked it; he felt owned and protected. Rodney’s face was pressed into his shoulder – he’d probably get drooled on, but he didn’t care.

Rodney slid a hand down, stroking him from chest to hip. “Thanks,” he whispered. “I mean, no one takes any notice of the old Leap Day rituals any more, and subs proposition tops all the time, but even so . . . I’m glad that in this at least, you’re a traditionalist.”

John put his arm around Rodney’s back. “Wasn't gonna wait another four years,” he said sleepily.

“Well, quite, and think of the time we’ve wasted. There’s so much catching up to do.”

“Inna morning.”


Rodney’s hand slid down to John’s sleeping cock and curled around it, holding it gently. It felt oddly like he was holding John’s hand.

Comforted, John drifted into sleep.


- the end -