Force of cohabitation

by Kass

Lamardeuse hosted a festival of John/Rodney domesticity stories. This is what I wrote.

"Just for the record, this is so not what I expected."

John wiped his forehead with his sleeve and kept walking backwards. Carrying a twin bed backwards through the halls of Atlantis sucked, but getting to stare at Rodney's biceps made up for it. Mostly. "Which part of 'this,' exactly?"

Rodney didn't respond for a second, and John rolled his eyes. "Are you still pissed I didn't ask the Marines to move your damn furniture?"

"What? Of course not." Rodney sounded righteously indignant. "I got over that."

Yeah, after I pointed out what we do on this mattress, with examples and illustrations, John thought, and smirked. Rodney's face, which was already flushed from exertion, turned an even brighter red.

"So if it's not the manual labor," John said, "what's weirding you out?"

"I didn't say it was weirding me out." They reached the transporter, stood the bed on its end, and Rodney leaned against the wall in relief as the door whispered shut. It reopened almost instantly, and Rodney huffed a groan.

"Almost there," John said unnecessarily, and they levered the bed back to horizontal and started down the hall. "Also, you're stalling."

"It's the books," Rodney said. His mouth was pressed tight, which was worrisome.

John tried not to show that his stomach was filling up with butterflies. Rodney was not backing out of this now; they'd moved every damn thing he owned, except for the bed. Plus John was pretty damn invested in this cohabitation thing. "What about the books?" Christ, it was like pulling teeth.

"I always figured that would be the hard part about moving in with somebody. Y'know: combining our libraries. Weeding out the duplicates. That's how you know it's serious."

"I don't think we have any duplicates," John said, confused.

"Thank you, Colonel, I think I noticed that."

John blinked. "Are you -- hang on," because they were finally -- finally! -- at his door. The door opened for them and they manhandled the bed inside, shoving it next to his with a screech of metal on metal that made him wince. Rodney flopped onto it with a sigh as the door closed.

That looked like a pretty good idea, actually. John toed off his boots and sat on the edge of the bed beside him. "Is it really a problem for you that my copy of Hitchhiker's Guide is in a box at McMurdo? Because I can email Leavitt and ask him to dig it out and get rid of it for me."

Rodney opened one eye. "What? Don't be ridiculous."

"So what's the problem?"

Rodney closed the open eye again, like he didn't want to see John's reaction. "It's supposed to be hard," he said plaintively. "Where's the anxiety?"

"You're freaking out because this isn't freaking you out?"

"I'm fatalistic. In case you hadn't noticed."

"I noticed," John said drily.

"We're doomed," Rodney said.

"Yeah," John agreed, and stretched out on the bed alongside Rodney, scooting close enough to press his nose into Rodney's neck. "Doomed to a perennial lack of anxiety. My books and your books are stuck together for the rest of their paperback lives."

"Your book," Rodney said haughtily. John bit his neck gently and Rodney sighed a little, his body melting against John's.

"You got a problem with my book?" John murmured as they both shifted onto their sides, spooning together. Rodney pressed back against him, which sent sparks up John's spine.

"That sounds disturbingly dirty," Rodney noted, his head tipping forward to give John better access to the pink skin above his collar.

"Oh, baby, earmark my pages," John said, and Rodney's helpless laugh turned into a gasp when John sucked a hickey onto the back of his neck.

The End