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Summary: In which McKay's hatred of flowers is vindicated.

Updated: 24 Jul 2016; Published: 24 Jul 2016

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Story Notes:
Written for 2016's satedan_grabass John/Ronon Thing-a-thon

"It is difficult to believe the Ancients would have need for a ZPM on this world." Teyla swatted at yet another of the oversized metallic-green bugs flying around her face.

"The power readings are consistent with those of a ZedPM." McKay, his head down and attention focused on his tablet, walked into John's back.

"Watch it, McKay."

"Me? You're the one who stopped w-"

"What is it?" Ronon growled over McKay's bluster, flicking the tail of his coat away from his leg to get at his gun.

John gripped his P90. There was something about the vast expanse of yellow wildflowers before him that he didn't like. He shook his head against the warm hum infiltrating his head, vibrating in his bones, and making him fidget.

"Are you all right, John?" Teyla stepped around McKay to lay a palm on John's shoulder.

He moaned and leaned into the heat of her touch. It was as if the chaos inside him craved for more.

"What is it?" Rodney finally looked up, bottom lip stuck out in annoyance while his eyes widened with concern.

"Colonel Sheppard seems...affected." Teyla stumbled; her feet sliding in the rich brown earth as John pushed more of his bodyweight into her.

"Affected?" Rodney asked; panic forcing his voice a couple of notches higher. "What do you mean, affected?!"

Ronon grabbed the hook at the back of Teyla's vest and held her until she regained her balance.

"Thank you, Ronon."

"I've got him." Ronon rumbled, releasing his grip on Teyla at her nod and stood close enough to Sheppard for his team leader to lean on him if needed.

"Is anyone else affected? I mean, I feel fine, but how are we really to know? Obviously it's something we can't see." Rodney gestured at the way John had pressed his whole body against Ronon and was rubbing his cheek over the coarse linen of Ronon's tunic.

"Smell good." John crooned and ducked close to hide the hot flush burning his cheeks.

Somewhere inside a tiny voice screamed for him to stop. He knew it wasn't right, wasn't permitted, but Ronon smelled fucking awesome and he felt even better. His hands slid across linen, felt where fabric gave way to smooth hot skin. John jolted with the contact; groaning with want and pressed harder, closer, his fingertips pushing under the ragged hem to curve over Ronon's flank. He felt Ronon tremble beneath his touch and heard the rumble of sound trapped within the broad chest beneath his ear.

"I think...we should be asking why only Colonel Sheppard is affected." Teyla smiled despite the deep furrow between her brows. She had often wondered how her teammates would look together. "Perhaps there is something here which affects only Earth humans?"

"I'm from Earth, and I'm not affected." Rodney huffed, his fingers flying across his tablet. "I mean, I do feel itchy, and warm, warmer than this planet's daily temperature would account for. But certainly not affected enough" He waved his hand in John's general direction, indicating the way John had buried his face between Ronon's pecs and was trying to get his thigh over Ronon's hip.

"Indeed." Ronon growled; perfect white teeth sinking into his plush lower lip as he tried not to react. He wanted Sheppard, had wanted him since the cave and that lazy drawl had spilled from that mouth. "What?"

Rodney sniffed and Ronon pulled his long fingers free from the ridiculous chaos of Sheppard's hair. The silky softness made him grip tight as he tugged Sheppard's head up.

"Flowers." John slurred, drunk on Ronon. His gold-flecked hazel eyes dark with want.

"Did he say flowers?" Rodney squeaked, eyes darting from one side of the field to the other. "Great, just great. Next thing we know there'll be flying monkeys. Trust Colonel Alpha McHero to lead us all into a field of sex pollen!"

"You're just annoyed it didn't affect you." Ronon said.

"Yes. Yes, because obviously I want to be out of my mind with lust while hiking through the jungle of an alien planet. You know he's going to come out of it eventually, don't you. And you'll still be no closer to getting what you want."

"Rodney!" Teyla exclaimed; shocked that Rodney was aware of Ronon and John's undeclared feelings for each other, and that he would be so callous.

"I'm sorry, Ronon." Rodney couldn't meet Ronon's eyes. "I'm just..."

"I would not take advantage."

It wasn't until that moment that Teyla and Rodney realised Ronon wasn't touching John back. He held himself rigid, body unyielding despite John writhing against him and leaning on tiptoes to suckle at Ronon's neck tattoo.

"We know that, Ronon. Rodney was questioning neither your honour, nor your feelings for Colonel Sheppard." Teyla had shifted her position, placing herself between Ronon and Rodney.

"Of course not. You're much better than all those alien priestesses. If only he'd forget those archaic regulations a-" Rodney caught the look Teyla was giving him and cleared his throat. "We should go. Teyla, you take the lead. Ronon you can, ummm, yes, well."

"Of course, Rodney." Teyla ducked her head so he wouldn't see her grin. "Should we perhaps collect samples for Doctor Keller?"

"Take the flowers with us?!" Rodney's eyes bugged as he gulped a breath; face bright red and sweat dampening his hairline. "We need to get Sheppard away from them. It's bad enough out here, but in the confines of the jumper. He'll be..."

Ronon groaned, drawing the attention of his teammates.

"Are you becoming affected, Ronon?" Teyla reached out her hand to offer comfort but let it drop to her side when John snarled at her.

"You could say that."

"Oh God!" Rodney slapped a palm over his face and turned away. "Way, way, more information than I ever needed to know."

"There are sample bags in our supplies." Teyla shrugged out of the backpack she'd been carrying and crouched down to search the pockets.

"Let's hope the seal holds in mutant pollen spores. I'm going to have to fly us back to Atlantis and I don't want any distractions."

"I understand, Rodney." Teyla walked around John and Ronon to pluck a posy of the yellow flowers.

A plume of fine pink mist drifted up when she tugged their stems and John moaned pityingly. Ronon staggered and clutched John's hips to stay upright, eliciting a whimper from the man in his arms as their cocks ground together.


John uttered Ronon's name with such longing that even Teyla turned to give them privacy. She feared for their team after this. But most of all she grieved for what today would do to the budding relationship of her friends.

"Time to go." Rodney ordered; helping Teyla on with her pack.

They moved back the way they'd come at a pace even Rodney didn't complain about; disturbing the haze of metallic bugs and shoving aside the leafy foliage. John didn't want to trek through the jungle, he wanted to taste every hidden inch of Ronon. He wanted to feel those huge hands on his body. The arm around his waist tightened and he shuddered; stumbling with the rush of need and want, and hunger that overwhelmed him.

"Kiss me."

Ronon sighed; how he'd dreamed of Sheppard demanding this from him. But this wasn't Sheppard. His inhibitions might be freed, but there was no consent, and Ronon would not take what Sheppard had not given; no matter how long he'd wanted. "I can't."

John skidded to a halt, oblivious to everything but Ronon. "You don't want me."

"I want you."

Ronon hauled Sheppard across the minuscule space between them, hoping what he was about to say would penetrate the pollen haze clouding Sheppard's mind, when nothing else seemed able to.

"I want you above all others. I want to kiss you. I want to fuck you and I want you to fuck me. I want to sleep with you and I want to wake with you. I want to fight beside you and I want to die in your arms. I want to stay with you and watch as your hair turns grey. I want everything. I want to wear you ring, and have everyone know I am yours."

Ronon panted each breath ragged and raw. He had wanted to speak to Sheppard, to John, of these things in the privacy of the rumpled bed they'd just ruined; with the air still humming with the echo of their joining. Not in the forest with Teyla and McKay, and Sheppard on a weird sex pollen high. But once he'd begun there was no way to stem the flow of all he felt. His heart clenched like a fist.

John groaned, heat surging out from where Ronon held him to envelop his entire being. It was the most words Ronon had ever said; treasured, beautiful, words full of promise.

"Kiss me." He begged. He wanted to show Ronon what he felt, unable at the best of times to express emotions in words. "Kiss me, Ronon."

"You two coming?" Rodney yelled from the bend in the track.

Ronon jerked back, both cursing and praising McKay's timing.

"Have to get back to Atlantis." He couldn't help the gentle graze he ran over Sheppard's flushed cheek, memorizing the way his long lashes fluttered in response.

"Okay." John still clung to Ronon. The weight of his arm circling Ronon's back beneath his coat reassuring him of their connection.

But the further they got from the field, the more withdrawn Sheppard became.


Ronon leaned his weight on the edge of Sheppard's bed, their hands mere inches from touching as Keller explained her findings.

Sheppard wouldn't look at him.

Ronon could do little else.

"It seems the high concentration of pheromone present on the flowers' stamen overstimulated Colonel Sheppard's synapses in much the same way as marijuana increases the brain's levels of dopamine. By lowering inhibitions and stimulating the body's pleasure and reward systems." Doctor Keller explained; a pink flush riding high on her cheeks.

"Jennifer? Why was Colonel Sheppard the only one to be affected?" Teyla may have asked the question, but it was obvious Rodney was more than a little interested in the answer.

"According to his scans, Colonel Sheppard's ATA gene acted as a superconductor for the pollen's aphrodisiac properties. You and Ronon don't have the gene so you were immune to its effect. And Doctor McKay has the artificial gene therapy."

Rodney crossed his arms over his chest but remained silent, despite the torrent of outrage building beneath the surface.

"Is the Colonel fit for duty, Doctor?" Woolsey asked, the overhead lighting reflecting in the sheen of his balding head.

"No off-world missions for the next day or two, but yes, he'll be fine."

John threw back the sheet and dropped his legs over the side of the bed.

"What are you doing, John?" Teyla stepped forward but didn't touch him.

"Doc said I'm fine."

"I believe Doctor Keller said you need to rest." Woolsey moved to block John's way.

"I'll rest in my quarters."

Everyone directed their eyes to Jennifer, who nodded. "As long as you do rest, Colonel."

John pushed up from the bed and moved between Woolsey and Teyla, making his break for freedom before anyone else could offer a protest. He needed to be alone so he could freak out in private. Three years he'd managed to keep his growing feelings for Ronon under wraps. Not as well hidden as he'd hoped, but at least kept within his team. Until some stupid flowers had fucked everything up.

He rubbed a hand across the back of his neck and hissed as residual desire sparked at the touch. It thrilled him; the memory of Ronon's body under his hands, the way muscle had flexed and rippled. The taste of Ronon's skin was still on his tongue; pulse rapid as he suckled that distracting tattoo.

But what haunted him the most were Ronon's words. No drug could take those from him. Ronon had declared himself without artifice or mockery. He had laid it all on the line. At the time John remembered the rejection, the dismissal, the way he'd urged and pleaded in an effort to take what he wanted; regardless of how Ronon felt about it. He had coerced Ronon. If it hadn't been for McKay John would have stolen Ronon's kiss, would have destroyed a trust years in the making, and all for the sake of a moment's instant satisfaction.

John ran the last few meters to his quarters. Twisted sideways through the gap in the opening doors and skidded to his knees in the bathroom. Retching into the floor of the shower, stomach aching as he continued to heave long after there was anything left to bring up. Tears and snot made a mess of his face and a clammy sweat broke out in his pits and between his shoulders. He lay on the cool tiles, his body trembling in the aftershocks.

Ronon hadn't looked at him since they returned to Atlantis. John couldn't blame him. He was surprised the guy had stayed through Keller's assessment. Ronon had been at his side through all of it. He sighed and thought the shower on, because not only was he an insensitive asshole, he was a gross one and he should really be clean when he went to find Ronon.


The hot water hit his shoulders and chest before it soaked his hair to reach his scalp. Ronon closed his eyes and tried to breathe deep, only his chest was locked tight. It hurt worse than any wound he'd ever endured.

They had returned to Atlantis and Sheppard hustled down the ramp and out the jumper bay without a backward glance. He had not looked at Ronon even once in the infirmary. One moment of eye contact would have been enough to reassure, but Ronon didn't deserve it. He'd broken Sheppard's trust when he leaned in for the almost kiss. If it hadn't been for McKay's timely bitching, Ronon would've taken what Sheppard offered and been damned. With one kiss three years of friendship and the hope of more, destroyed. It didn't matter that it hadn't happened. It was the intent.

Ronon lathered up, his large hands sliding over his hips just as Sheppard's had done. His eyes fluttered closed as his dick remembered how Sheppard had felt grinding against him, throbbing against his thigh in a mess of soap suds and water down its length. He cursed and turned to rinse his back. The wet ropes of his dreads slapped his back like a cat o'nine tails, lashing him for his crime.

His door chimed when he was in the middle of lacing his leathers. He took a moment to tie the final twist and tossed his towel back into the bathroom, before striding over to the door control. Sheppard stood before him in a clean tee and black denim with still-damp hair falling over his eyes. Ronon hadn't known it could do that.

"Can I come in?" Sheppard's words were quiet, a little broken around the edges.

Ronon nodded, his chest still too tight to allow his own words their freedom. But he didn't miss the way Sheppard's eyes travelled over his bare chest and lingered where his leathers rode the cuts of his hips.

Sheppard crossed the threshold, edging past Ronon to stand in the only space available at the foot of the bed. He ran a hand over his face, sighing as he waved his hand in Ronon's direction; black cuff stark against the pale skin of his inner wrist. Ronon wanted to know what it hid.

"Look, I suck at this kinda thing."

Sheppard met Ronon's eyes for the first time since he'd begged to be kissed and Ronon had surrendered; broken trust and taken advantage.

"I know." Ronon surprised himself. His voice sounded normal, if a little ragged. "Sheppard, I-"

"Call me John."

Ronon's heart skipped a beat, at the unspoken please, to land with a heavy thud in his boots. He stared at Sheppard and tried to read his expression; took in the wide hopeful eyes and the crooked teeth worrying his plush bottom lip.

"John." Ronon murmured; tasting the name as if tasting the man himself, and said it again, louder with a soft growl around the oh and dragging out the n.

The surge of desire at the sound of his name on Ronon's tongue made him shiver and his knees weak. Ronon was at his side in an instant; one huge hand splayed across the small of his back and the other pressing over his belly, keeping him upright.

"You good?"

Good didn't begin to describe how he felt when Ronon touched him, but he nodded in lieu of anything better.

"I wanna fight with you too, wanna kiss and fuck you, not sure 'bout the grey hair bu-"

Ronon dived in and kissed him, running his tongue over the press of John's lips, tentative in its quest for entry. He opened for him, eager and hungry, clutching at smooth skin over hard muscle as Ronon hauled him in; tight and close and so fucking perfect.

When they came up for air, Ronon's dreads falling around their faces, John whispered. "I'm sorry, I shouldn't've...forgive me?"

Ronon grunted. John's fumbled attempt of an apology explained the rebuff in the jumper and the infirmary. John had shouldered the blame, just as Ronon had done. Holy Ancestors, they were a pair. He chuckled and leaned his forehead against John's. "If you will forgive me."

John blinked, confused, until he understood. He reached up on his toes, palms cupping Ronon's jaw and kissed him like he'd always wanted to. The rasp of whiskers moving against his lips sparked a fire low in his belly.

Ronon leaned in, intoxicated by the taste and feel of John. His hands pushed black cotton up until John broke away to rid himself of his tee, only to dive back in and explore the contours and planes of Ronon's torso; nails dragging through treasure trail to pause over laces.

"Gonna take these off, Chewie?" He rolled his eyes, head arched back to expose his throat and groaned; colouring hard at John's chuckle. "So, that's a yes?"

"Fuck, yes." Ronon growled, distracted by the buttons on John's jeans and the way John rolled his hips into his touch, grazing his cock across Ronon's knuckles.

They shucked their clothing amid urgent kisses and wandering hands, until each stood naked before the other; paused on a precipice neither could pull back from.

"Ronon." John murmured and found himself thrown down on chocolate fur softer than a whisper with Ronon looming above him. He was beautiful and honey-smooth, an Adonis with want and need flaring bright and hot in his dark brown eyes. He was everything John wanted and never thought he could have.

"I have dreamed of this." Ronon whispered against the pointy tip of John's ear as he reached for the Athosian oil he kept beneath his pillow for nights when thoughts of John would not be denied.

"What? You dreamed of me being drugged by sex pollen?" John spread his legs wide and arched into the cool slick Ronon circled around his hole.

Ronon ignored him in favour of pushing two fingers past John's rim; grinning at the lack of resistance and the embarrassed heat painting John's chest and neck. He had made himself ready. Ronon groaned and shoved deep, thrilling when John arched to meet him. The slick heat clutching his fingers made his cock bounce against his belly; eager to fill John and fuck him.

John moaned when Ronon withdrew his fingers, leaving him empty and open. "Fuck me."

He hoisted John's thigh over his hip and leaned down, rubbed the head of his cock over John's hole just to watch him writhe in his arms.

"Bastard." John groused and tugged Ronon in by his dreads so he could nip his lips; only to gasp and arch up as Ronon pushed inside him.

He wriggled at the invasion and Ronon anchored his hips to the bed, drove harder, filling him beyond what he thought he was capable of taking. Ronon stilled, buried to the hilt inside John. The man he had wanted for three years fluttered and clenched around his cock; hot and powerful. John clutched at his back with hands that trembled, his nails scoring his need into Ronon's flesh.

"I will fuck you, John." He ducked close to leave his breath on his lover's skin. "Because you asked me, and because I want to."

"Fuck, Ronon!" John moaned, the sound thrilling Ronon as he pulled out and bucked in. Over and again; his hips slapping John's ass as he lifted him higher, head arched back exposing his throat.

Ronon couldn't resist. He lunged in, sucking sensitive skin, leaving his mark where no one but he and John would see it. He lifted John from the bed to sink into his lap; spread his cheeks wide and circled a finger where John stretched around the cock plunging inside him.

"OhfuckRonon!" John gasped and wriggled into his touch, taking the extra inch like a champ. "'d fuck me."

He bared his teeth and rammed his hips up as he held John's down. The hard slap of flesh on flesh was the only sound in the room beside John's moans as he climbed. Ronon held his shuddering lover in his arms as he pulsed along his length, John's untouched cock striping their bellies with warm come.

Ronon fucked him through it, each drive through trembling flesh taking him higher until he could hold back no more. "John!"

"Yeah, do it. C'mon!" John ground his hips, squeezed tight and rippled inner muscles until Ronon spilled inside him; body rigid and vulnerable in John's arms.


"You realise the contradiction of growing old together and dying in battle, right?" John said sometime later, as he lay with his cheek on Ronon's pec and his arm draped low across his hips.


John's affectionate chuckle was the last thing Ronon heard as he fell asleep beside the man he loved.