Dr. Rodney McKay, PhD (scientificsnark) wrote,
Dr. Rodney McKay, PhD
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[Backdated; for Carter]

Rodney missed distractions. Granted, the kind of distractions he'd had to deal with on Atlantis had been of the mortal danger variety, and he didn't much enjoy those. But...he could have done with just one impossible problem to solve, just one deadly situation to get out of, because the alternative was thinking about his current circumstance and he didn't really want to do that. Somehow, the idea of becoming a father was worse than the idea of getting slaughtered by aliens.

The implications of that were pretty unsettling, so he tried not to think about that, either.

For the most part, he'd managed to occupy his considerable brain power with the emergency call-boxes being set up all over the island, but that project was now drawing to a close and it hadn't really been a great feat for his intellect to tackle, anyway, so Jill had always been in the back of his mind. He'd been avoiding her as much he could, but the excuses were running out, and he knew it.

It was only a matter of time before Samantha or, god forbid, someone like Daniel Jackson or O'Neill found out and got on his case. He was living in fear every time he came back to New Atlantis.

He was returning from the compound now, sneaking around to the back of his hut so he wouldn't have to go through the main clearing and nobody would see him. Hopefully. He reached the back door, his gaze darting furtively from side to side.
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"Hey there, McKay," Sam said as she walked by. "What are you doing sneaking around like that?" Not that Rodney really needed a reason; it was his hut and he could do whatever, but Sam liked to give him a hard time now and then, since she wasn't his boss anymore and she totally could.
"Gah!" He whirled around, expecting to see Jill, but Jill didn't call him McKay anymore. It was only Samantha, and she hadn't started off by yelling at him, so maybe he was safe. He sagged. "Don't - don't do that! You could have given me a heart attack."
"Whoa, somebody's jumpy." She took a little step back and eyed him. "I just said 'hey', I didn't jump out from behind a bush dressed like a Wraith or a clown or something. Calm down."
"You might as well have," Rodney grumbled. "What are you doing out here, anyway?"
"Looking for you, actually," she replied. "Haven't seen you much lately." She'd been working on the call box project too, but in a different area, and when she'd looked for him to ask some questions about her other work he'd been kind of scarce. She'd been both annoyed and worried. "What's up with the slinking around, McKay?"
So Jill hadn't told her. Rodney wasn't sure whether to be glad about that or not.

"Nothing," he said hurriedly. "That is - I mean - nothing, nothing's going on, everything's fine." He wasn't even convincing himself at this point.
Sam frowned. She'd known him long enough to know when he was being shifty, when he was being uncomfortable, or both. "Rodney, you really suck at lying," she said, a little less teasing and a little more concerned. "Something going on with you?"
Rodney frowned. She was going to get it out of him, he just knew it, and then the midden was going to hit the windmill, as the saying went.

"No," he said. Compulsion forced him to add: "Not with me, exactly."
Now that was a surprise. She had expected that he would either deny anything was going on or refuse to talk about it; if he was admitting something was up, then it must be something big that he couldn't hide.

"You want to talk about it?" she asked, not teasing anymore. Despite the fact that she usually gave McKay a lot of hell, she actually had grown to like him a lot. If something was up with him, she was worried.
"Nooot really," Rodney admitted. "I mean, I don't see how talking about it is going to help." He sat down heavily on the step by his back door, rubbing a palm across his face.
Well, crap. That couldn't be good. Sam sat down beside him, nudging him with her elbow. "Maybe it won't help whatever it is, but it might help you feel a little better about things, or help you decide what to do about it," she suggested.
"There's nothing I can do," he said whinily. "That's the problem." He ran his restless hand through his hair and rubbed at the back of his neck. He was trying not to get annoyed, really he was, but it was Samantha's fault for bringing it up. Well. Trying to bring it up. Not that she knew what it was, but still. She shouldn't have asked him.

Yeah. It was her fault. Totally her fault.
"Oh, come on, McKay," Sam said. "When have you ever had a problem you couldn't do anything about?" Besides getting off this island, of course. True, she hadn't thought much of him when they'd first met, but he'd mellowed a little bit (a little) and despite his kind of strange personality she'd come to appreciate him; he was one of the smartest people she knew. If there was a problem, he'd be able to sort it out.
She wasn't making him feel any better, either. Rodney groaned.

It was amazing how quickly he could go from terse and uncommunicative to openly whiny. Just one of his many talents.

"This is the first," he admitted after a long silence, and when he finally looked at Samantha, it was with a grave expression.
Rodney looked so serious and defeated that Sam got a terrible, depressing feeling in the pit of her stomach. "Oh, my God, McKay," she said. "Are you dying or something? No, wait, you said it wasn't you--oh God, is it Jill? What's wrong with her?" She hadn't disappeared, Jack was just talking about her the day he'd stolen her laundry, so it couldn't be that, but she couldn't think of anything that would bug Rodney more (other than some tragedy happening to him) than something serious going on with Jill.
Sighing, Rodney did the palm-to-face thing again. Then he said, quite simply:

"She's pregnant."

And then he winced, as if waiting for the blow to fall.
Whatever disaster she'd been thinking of, it hadn't been that, and she blinked a little in surprise, then smiled faintly. "But McKay, that's not..you were talking like this was something awful," she said finally. "But I guess neither of you were expecting this, huh?"
Rodney blinked. He'd expected something less...understanding, like "You bastard!" and a slap. But maybe that was just his guilty conscience at work.

"That's an understatement," he said.
To be honest, the idea of McKay reproducing was a little bizzare. She'd never imagined him as a father in any sense of the word, and had never encountered any Rodney-spawn in any alternate timeline, parallel universe, or alternate reality she'd been a part of, so out of all the unlikely things she had seen, this hadn't been one of them.

Then again he'd never been with anyone that Sam liked as much as she liked Jill, so she'd never had an impetus to imagine it.

"Okay, so, it's a surprise," Sam said, "and totally unexpected and maybe not what you want--I'm guessing?--but that doesn't mean it's something awful. And I'm not really sure that means you have to sneak around New Atlantis and slink in your back door like a thief or something." She looked at him. "What does Jill think about it?"
"I'm sure if there was a...safe way out, she'd take it," he snorted bitterly. He couldn't really blame her. He wasn't ready for this. At all.

"I haven't really talked to her much since she told me," he added, guiltily.
Sam frowned. "You haven't?" It wasn't really a question, more of a statement of disapproval. "Is that because she needs some space and you're being a nice guy and giving it to her, or is it because you're being a complete chickenshit and don't know what to say or do?"

Not that Sam would know what to do either if she were in Jill's shoes--and it wasn't as though it hadn't crossed her mind after Valentine's Day, but thankfully she'd been lucky, and it wasn't going to be an issue--but this was McKay, the guy who didn't know that It's not you, it's me was universal breakup code.
Rodney nodded. That was more like it. Then he realized he probably shouldn't be pleased he was getting bitched out, but in some way, he felt as if the status quo had been restored.

"I needed the space," he said. "And...okay, I already told you there's nothing I can do. Or say. But if you have any ideas, oh Miss Perfect Relationship, I'm all ears."
"Um, McKay?" Sam said, a little sarcastically, because the jibe about her relationship had hit a little too close whether he knew it or not. "You don't have to do anything except be there. Because whether you like it or not, you're going to have a kid, and no matter how freaked out you are about it, or how much you don't want it, Jill's going to be about ten times more freaked out about it because she's the one that's going to have to make a whole lot more adjustments in her life than you are. And she's doing to need you. Even if you're not doing anything."
And there it was; the truth Rodney had been trying to avoid all this time. He grimaced expressively for a while, and stared at the toes of his worn sneakers.

"But," he said in a small voice, suddenly meek, "I don't think I know how."
Damn McKay. Sam wanted to be irritated with him for, at least as far as she could tell, leaving Jill high and dry and stranded, but he looked kind of pitiful staring at his shoes like that and she couldn't help but feel sorry for him too. "I wouldn't know how either, if I were you," she said, and nudged him again a little with her elbow. "But I don't think that matters. I think the important thing is that you make the effort. And then you and Jill can kind of figure out together where to go from here."

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