May. 14th, 2008 08:09 pm
Characters: Rodney, ensemble
Warnings: Crack, some language
Disclaimer: Not mine!
Summary: "Oh my God! It's glowing!"
Author's Note: Reason number three hundred and eighty-one why I should be kept far away from caffeine.
Rodney shows up in the infirmary still half-asleep, with his shirt on backwards and his boots untied, because the third-shift staff had called him, yelling about an emergency. Rodney had been in the middle of dreaming about having sex while hanging from the ceiling and attempting to write the theorem for wormhole activation across the skin of his faceless partner. Being woken up had been a relief.
Actually being in the infirmary is something less than satisfying. One of the nurses brings over a fist sized Ancient device, covered in a thick layer of dust, presenting it with a beaming smile. Rodney looks at the woman, down at the device, down to his untied boots, back over his shoulder in the direction of his abandoned quarters, and sighs. "Okay, give it here."
Obviously, it is time for him to give another course in What Is Considered an Actual Emergency. Rodney considers the best time to broadcast it over the city's speakers, settling on somewhere around three in the morning. The device isn't a design that he's seen before, and he frowns, turning it over in his hands and wiping at the dust.
Under the thick layer of grime it is golden, square, smooth on three sides with a bunch of tiny buttons on the fourth. Rodney hums to himself, rubbing his thumb over the shiny black buttons, cursing when Sheppard says from behind him, "What's that? Want me to turn it on?"
The other man doesn't wait for an answer, the device buzzing to life in Rodney's hands. There's a shock up Rodney's arms, and he finds himself holding his breath, waiting to either combust, petrify, or explode into balls of fluff. When after a long moment nothing happens, Rodney lets out a shaky breath, whirling on John, "Why would you do that? We don't even know what this is! Why are you even here?"
Sheppard appears to be trying to look unimpressed. His attempt is somewhat thwarted by the fact that his hair is sticking out in a perfect circle around his head, and that his fly is down. Rodney clears his throat, gesturing at the problem area and Sheppard stammers out a curse while zipping up.
They end up staring at each other uncomfortably for a moment before Rodney draws himself up and shoves the conversation back on track, "I was saying. What are you doing here?"
That gets a shrug, "I heard the emergency call."
Rodney narrows his eyes, "You heard the emergency call on my private channel?" Sheppard has the decency to look ashamed of himself. Rodney is opening his mouth to point out that there is such a thing as privacy and perhaps Sheppard would like some practice in not violating it, but before he gets the chance two of Rodney's scientists come running through the door, carrying a bleeding third man between them.
And, as if that wasn't disturbing enough, Rodney's crotch also chooses that moment to start putting off roughly the same amount of light as a small star going supernova.
"Oh my God!" Never before in his life has Rodney has occasion to stare in horror down at his crotch and wave his hands around. It's an experience that he's not happy about having now. It's like there's a spot light shining out of his pants, and it isn't going away no matter how much Rodney wishes it would.
"Holy shit!" Rodney has a sinking feeling that Sheppard is staring with the same horrified fascination, but he can't make himself look up to find out. Rodney starts to drop the Ancient device, then realizes that breaking it probably wouldn't be a great idea, and shoves it at Sheppard, who takes a huge step back.
"No, no, no, this isn't fucking happening." Rodney fumbles with his zipper, ignoring what sounds like protest on Sheppard's part, staring down in horror when he pulls out the waistband of his boxers. "Oh my God! It's glowing!" Rodney feels curiously lightheaded.
Sheppard grabbing his upper arms and shaking him is enough to make Rodney look up. John gives him another hard shake, his expression set and tight, his voice serious, "It's okay." Rodney makes a sound of distress, because obviously it is not okay. Sheppard winces, revising, "It'll be okay."
"My dick is glowing!" Nothing about that even comes close to being okay. "This is all your fault! You turned that thing on and look what it did! It gave me...DayGlo cock!" Rodney is distantly aware that some of the doctors and nurses are staring at them with some concern. He finds that he doesn't actually give a shit. They'd be freaking out if it was happening to them.
Sheppard casts a suspicious look down at the device that Rodney is still holding, clenched in one fist. The man says, very carefully, "Look, I'm sure that you'll be able to figure out how to turn it off." Rodney just stares at him, then pushes the other man aside.
Rodney demands to the room in general, "Someone make sure this isn't dangerous right now."
After tests, more tests than Rodney likes to think about, Keller declares that the glowing isn't dangerous in any way. Relief hits Rodney hard. He takes a moment to bury his face in his hands, squeezing his eyes shut against his bright white crotch-light.
Jennifer pats him on the shoulder, Rodney thinks she's trying to sound like she's not about to burst into fits of giggles, "See, you're going to be fine, McKay." Rodney blinks balefully up at her, deciding to ignore the way her eyes are crinkling up in the corners. At least she's trying not to laugh.
Rodney waves a hand, sliding off the infirmary bed and heading for the door. He fully intends to barricade himself in his lab and not come out until he's figured out how to fix this. He hesitates, because one of the other doctors is stepping out from behind a curtained off area, pulling off bloody gloves and sighing.
Responsibility, or possibly nosiness, makes Rodney ask, "What happened?"
The woman blinks at him, gaze narrowing in on Rodney's crotch and staying there when she says, sounding distracted, "Small explosion in the hydraulics labs. He'll be fine. Just some minor burns and glass fragments that had to be removed." The doctor pauses, "You do know that—" she breaks off, gesturing.
Rodney fights the urge to cover himself with his hands. He doubts it would help anyway. "No, somehow I missed it. Thanks for pointing it out." The woman looks up at the tone of his voice, closer to a snarl than anything else, looking embarrassed before she hurries past him.
There's a pitiful moan from behind the curtain, and Rodney hesitates for a half second. Technically he shouldn't go in there, but technically they shouldn't have woke him up and made him come down here. Rodney pushes the curtains aside, trying to remember the man's name, reaching absently for the pitcher of water beside the bed.
The man's hand is burned, lying on top of his white sheets, and Rodney raises a cup to the man's lips, carefully. When he steps back the guy sighs with relief, which doesn't actually make Rodney feel any better, but at least doesn't make him feel worse.
And then he looks down at the man's hand again.
"What are you saying?" Rodney is certain that Keller is being deliberately obtuse. He's explained twice, dragging the completely uninjured scientist along for proof, that apparently the glow is even more disturbing than they'd initially realized.
Rodney tries again, "I'm saying that the crotch-light—"
"Can we not call it that?" Jennifer is biting her bottom lip, her shoulders lifting once or twice as she tries to swallow her laughter. Rodney glares, shifting uncomfortably, wondering what exactly he did to the universe to deserve this.
"Look, it doesn't matter what we call it. It healed this guy." The guy in question waves awkwardly, still picking at the bandages that he doesn't actually need anymore. Rodney still has to demand an explanation for how he managed to injure himself in the hydraulics lab, but he's saving that for later.
For now, Keller is frowning with some difficulty, finally managing, "Well, it's gone now, right?"
Rodney nods, because the glow had disappeared after it healed the other man. He's hoping that it's gone for good, but has his doubts. Nothing is ever that easy. Keller sighs, "I can run some more tests if you want?" And Rodney shakes his head, because he's had more than enough tests ran on his dick for one day. He goes to the lab to try to figure out the Ancient device.
For three days no pieces of Rodney's body start glowing. He dares to hope, the Ancient device still sitting on his desk, frustratingly nowhere to be found in the database. He's moved on to another project, maintenance, because there's always too much of that, when he realizes that he'd been seriously overestimating his luck.
Rodney's crotch starts glowing at the exact same time that Miko shouts across the room, her voice laced with pain. Rodney heaves a sigh, staring down at the blazingly bright light radiating out of his dick, before pushing to his feet.
Miko is cradling her left hand, blood pooling in her palm and dripping off of her fingers. Rodney shoves the scientists gathered around her out of the way, grabs her wrist, and pulls it into range of the light. Luckily, it radiates a few feet away from his body. Otherwise it might have been awkward.
Miko stops sobbing between one breath and the next, flexing her fingers and blinking up at Rodney through her thick glasses. The glow has disappeared once more, and Rodney heaves a sigh of relief before he realizes that Miko is smiling up at him.
Rodney curses, throws his hands up in defeat, and storms out of the lab.
Of course that can't be the end of it.
Rodney ends up called to the infirmary at all hours, whenever anyone does any damn thing to themselves. It's not that Rodney begrudges them medical attention, but he's pretty sure that he and his glowing dick should be allowed to sleep through black eyes or cuts that only require a few stitches. No one else seems to agree.
When people start just coming to his quarters Rodney tries to ignore them, but his cock glows brighter and brighter the longer it's ignored, which makes it impossible to sleep. Rodney ends up just leaving his door unlocked, with a sign outside instructing them to come in, but to not wake him. That work pretty well, especially when people start leaving him candy. Chocolate makes up for a lot in Rodney's book.
Off-world things are as normal as they ever are. Rodney heals a few chieftains or their sick kids, which results in some very nice trade agreements. One world decides that they'd rather like to keep him, and Rodney ends up stuck in a tower, wondering how long it'll take him to grow his hair out long enough to climb down. Luckily, Sheppard shows up with the Jumper not long after that.
The device itself gets shipped to Earth for use and testing, then shipped back when they discover that it won't work for anyone there. It sits on Rodney's desk, a glowing paperweight that Rodney considers destroying several times a day. He never does. But he thinks about it.
And then there's MX3-92M.
When John goes out in the violent storms after his newest alien princess, the natives have already locked the rest of them up. They pass the night worrying and yelling, the tight twist of fear in Rodney's gut growing worse and worse as the hours roll past.
The natives end up dragging John in late the next day, his skin way too pale, his body limp, his uniform soaked with blood and rain. Teyla manages to convince their captors to let them have John, whose pulse is so thin Rodney can barely find it, his skin cold as ice.
Rodney had never been grateful to the Ancient glowing-dick device, but is quickly acquiring vast amounts of appreciation for it. John is too big to hold, really, but Rodney does the best he can, arms tight around the other man's shoulders, ignoring the exclamations of the villagers over his glowing crotch.
When John starts shivering Rodney feels it, when he lets out a shuddering breath it's against Rodney's shoulder. Rodney squeezes his eyes shut, willing his heart to slow down, willing the panic away, because John is fine, they're all fine.
John coughs, "Shit, Rodney," and Rodney nods because yeah, pretty much. When John pushes away he has his color back, and also one of the native's guns, which he points at the chief's daughter while demanding the release of the rest of the team.
Rodney feels numb all the way back to his quarters, stumbles his way into his shower and feels sick when he wonders what would have happened if he'd destroyed the device. The water washes John's blood off his skin while Rodney curses and shakes.
Three months later and Rodney is used to it. He barely even notices anymore. Going to the infirmary is just something he does, being awoken by someone stumbling over to his bed is just one more part of his day. He gets kidnapped a few more times, but that's pretty much par for the course, regardless of the light producing properties of his cock.
He's arguing with Zelenka, about the possibilities of a warp core engine with real life physics, when the device beeps. At first Rodney doesn't even realize that it's the same device, because he gave up trying to figure the thing out months ago, shoving it into a corner and ignoring it.
All the lights on its face are blinking, pulsing in time with the beeping. Rodney exchanges a look with Zelenka, taking a big step back, just in case. And then the beeping stops, the lights all dimming at the same time. Rodney frowns, then demands, "Quick, cut yourself."
Zelenka raises his eyebrows and crosses his arms. Rodney rolls his eyes, exasperated, "Nothing big, just—" he motions at the device, not sure if he's hoping that it's stopped working or not. After a moment Zelenka sighs, drawing his utility knife and opening a small cut across the back of his hand.
They both stare at Rodney's crotch expectantly.
Rodney counts to twenty inside his head, holding his breath. Nothing starts glowing that shouldn't, and Rodney laughs, clapping and bouncing on the balls of his feet. He blurts, "My penis is my own again!" and ignores the look that Radek is giving him because obviously the other man doesn't understand.
"So I hear this thing ran out of batteries." Sheppard is leaning a hip against the edge of Rodney's desk, turning the glowing-cock machine over and over in his hands. Rodney frowns up at him, wondering if it's time for dinner, or if Sheppard is just bothering him for the hell of it.
In any case, Rodney shrugs, "Looks that way." As near as they can figure, it had worked the same way the personal shield had, imprinting on him and then working until it ran out of juice. Rodney has only had a few hours to get used to the idea that he won't be being called down to the infirmary anymore, that he can stop worrying about people wandering around his room at night, that next time something goes wrong in the field he won't be able to fix it.
He hadn't expected to regret the crotch-light being gone, and he doesn't really.
Sheppard grunts something noncommittal, tossing the device up in the air, catching it and rubbing at a smudge on its surface. Rodney catches the other man jerking out of the corner of his eye, looks up to find Sheppard staring at the now glowing device with a sickly horrified expression.
For a moment neither of them move, then, smirking, Rodney calls, "Hey, Radek, come here for a minute."
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