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chelle and The Grrrl

Title: Eptitude

Authors: chelle and The Grrrl

Authors' emails: and

Authors' URL: and

Fandom: Atlantis

Category: Slash

Pairing: McKay/Sheppard

Archive: Ask first

Rating: NC-17

AN: John and Rodney fear they may not be ept.

The door slid shut behind them. Rodney waved a hand over the light switch and the room brightened. "Well," he said, shifting his weight from one foot to another. His heart thudded against his chest, beating fast enough to make him feel light-headed.

John nodded. He wandered around Rodney's room, eyeing it as if he had never seen it before. "Well," he finally said.

"Um, is that too bright?" Rodney adjusted the light and the room dimmed.

"No, no, I like the light."

Rodney readjusted the light back to its previous level. "Good." He took a deep breath. "Good."

John was still nodding, his head movements down to a slow bob. Then he stopped. "God, this is stupid."

"It is?" Rodney squeaked.

"No, not this," John waved a hand vaguely at the space between them. "Just, this." He waved his hands in a bigger circle this time.

"My quarters?"

"No, not your quarters." John waved his hands again, more emphatically this time. "This."

"Oh, well, I'm not sure I'd say 'stupid.' Stupidity is an absence of intelligence. We've got plenty of that." Rodney frowned. "Sort of. This is more an absence of knowledge or skill. Experience. That's it. It's an absence of experience which is causing awkwardness."

"As long as we aren't inept."

"Oh, god, do you think we might be?" That they might be inept was the reason for Rodney's nervousness. Okay, he was more afraid that he might be inept. He had trouble believing John could be inept at anything.

"No, no, of course not." John grinned, obviously going for 'cocky' but to Rodney it looked more like his off-world 'oh crap, how far away is that gate?' grin. "I'm sure we'll be very...ept."


John looked puzzled. "That's a word, isn't it?"

"I don't think so."

"Well, it should be." Hands on his hips, and John now appeared indignant, as if the English language had somehow failed him. "Apt?"

"Oh. Maybe. Like 'apt pupils'?"

John pointed at him, nodding excitedly. "Yes. Exactly."

"Good." Rodney nodded, too, for no reason at all. Then--silence. He ducked his head, looking at the floor--yes, the floor was still there and his feet were there, too, at the end of his legs, and this really was getting ridiculous. "Listen, maybe we should kiss. That was working pretty well back in the lab, right?"

John jerked his head away from Rodney's curtains, which he had been examining in great detail. "Okay."

They looked at each for a moment, eyes not quite meeting, then John took two steps forward. Sucking in a breath, Rodney took two. There was still about five feet between them. How had they gotten that far apart? John stepped. Rodney stepped. "I feel like I'm playing 'Mother May I,'" Rodney muttered.

Laughing, John closed the remaining distance between them. "You are so weird."

"There's nothing weird about 'Mother May I.' It's a popular childhood game. Someone's the mother and everyone else has to--"

John pressed his lips to Rodney's. Rodney tried to respond, but somehow he ended up opening his mouth too wide, too quickly, too something. Everything was getting slick and not in the good way. Wrapping an arm around Rodney's waist, John pressed closer. "Ow."

"Ow?" John asked.

"My foot." Rodney pulled his foot out from under John's. "Or rather, toe, to be precise."

"Sorry." John began to back away.

Rodney grabbed onto both his shoulders. "Wait, we managed to make this work before. Let's replicate the conditions. If I remember correctly, I was giving you a questioning look, and you leaned over and kissed me. "

"Questioning? You called that look questioning?"

"What would you call it?"

"Scowling. You were scowling at me," John said, "and your mouth was--yup, just like that."

"This is not a scowl--" Rodney dropped his hands from John's shoulders.

"Yes, it is. You were annoyed with me for getting to the point ahead of you, and you scowled."

"I did not scowl, I was questioning how you managed to deduce that the beacon had interfered with the power distribution," Rodney said.

"Fine. You were questioning. Then you leaned across the lab bench and decided to question me with your mouth."

"How else would I question you? With my toe? And I did not lean. You leaned."

John folded his arms across his chest. "You kissed me first."

Rodney raised his hand, pointing a finger at John. Then he dropped it. "Oh my god, we are inept."

"We are, aren't we?" John asked, unfolding his arms. Rodney nodded and John backed away, stopping when he reached Rodney's bed and sitting on the edge. John looked up at him, disappointment in his eyes. "I really wanted to…"

Nodding, Rodney sat beside him. "Yeah," he said with a sigh. "Me, too."

"But we're normally so ept," John said. "Look at us. We're ept. There isn't a guy on this base more ept than we are."

Rodney waved his hand in John's direction. "You're a dashing pilot. It doesn't get more ept than a dashing pilot." John nodded vigorously. "And I'm a genius. Geniuses are ept by definition."

John stopped nodding, expression growing thoughtful.

"Oh, they are too," Rodney insisted. "And I'd like you to know I'm very ept in the romance department. At least I have been, in the past." Under John's continued scrutiny he crumbled entirely. "Okay. So not always ept," he said before John could start naming names.

"But you're ept in a lot of other ways." John patted his back sympathetically. "Like when you're saving my life."

"Maybe we should treat this like a life or death situation?" Rodney asked.

"Oh." John's hand crept up to the back of Rodney's neck, fingertips reaching into his hair. "As in 'I'm going to die if you don't kiss me right now'?"

"That might work." Rodney watched John's lips curve into a smile. Leaning forward, he pressed his lips to John's. It was kind of tentative for a verge-of-death kiss, but Rodney figured they had a little time to spare. John returned the kiss, the soft pressure of his hand on Rodney's neck encouraging Rodney to part his lips, to deepen the contact between them.

"We can kiss," Rodney said when they parted.

John grinned. "Yes, yes we can. Wanna see if we can do it lying down?" He waggled his eyebrows in a way that was more goofy than sexual, and Rodney kissed him again, using his weight to lower them both to the bed.

"Hold it," John said, swinging his legs up on the bed.

Rodney sat back to allow him room, enjoying the way John's long body was pressing up against his. "Shoes?" he asked, even though this was John--John in his bed, of all places. But, still.

"Oh, yeah." John was trying to reach for his feet, but his jacket was twisted underneath him. "Let me just--"

Rodney should have seen it coming.

A tug, a yank, and then the jacket came free and John's hand smacked squarely into Rodney's nose.

"Ow, damn it--" Rodney blinked, eyes tearing up at the pain. "Sheppard, what are you doing?"

"Untying my shoes?" John looked appropriately mortified.

"That really, really, hurt." Rodney pressed both hands to the sides of his nose.

"I'm sorry." John started to reach out then dropped his hand. "Want to me to kiss it and make it better?"

"It's my nose."

"That's true," John said, his face twisting in different directions simultaneously. Rodney had never figured out how he was able to do that, but it was sufficiently distracting that he started to forget about his nose. "Is it feeling better?" John asked.


"Sorry. My mother always had this thing about shoes on the bed and it kind of stuck."

"Well then you should probably get them off."

"Right." John edged a little farther away from him and carefully bent over to untie his shoes.

One hand still carefully feeling his nose for damage, Rodney watched him. John Sheppard was sitting on Rodney's bed, taking of his shoes, and they were going to have sex. Or at least try to. At this rate Rodney wasn't convinced they were going to succeed. "It can't be that hard, right?" Rodney asked. It couldn't be. The human race wouldn't still be here if sex was that difficult.

"Absence of experience, like you said." John kicked one shoe off. "We'll just have to practice. A lot." John kicked off his second shoe and leaned back on his hands, wiggling his sock-encased toes proudly.

"I'm all for that," Rodney said, envisioning the practicing--lots of naked practicing. "Really, really, really all for it."

John pointed to Rodney's feet.

"Oh." Rodney leaned down to remove his shoes, which made his nose throb, but that wasn't so bad, because with any amount of luck, John would soon be making other parts of his body throb.

Hopefully, not with pain.

Worried, he suggested, "Hey, why don't we finish undressing right now and just kind of get that out of the way?"

John brightened. "Great idea."

It was a good idea. "I am a genius, after all," Rodney said with a curt nod.

This was it; they were going to get naked together. And do more of that great kissing that they did in the lab. Who knew what else John could do with that fantastic mouth? Rodney took a steadying breath and pulled his shirt off over his head. It felt weird and oddly clinical to be undressing like this, with John sitting there next to him, so he got it over with quickly, shedding his pants, briefs and socks in short order.

And then he was naked. Naked and sitting on his bed, right next to John.

Who was staring at him wide-eyed, jacket half-off.

"Wow," John said. "That was fast."

Feeling himself start to flush, Rodney said, "And you're slow. Come on, off with it." Rodney resisted the urge to cover himself with his hands. John was going to see it all eventually.

John finished removing his jacket, dropping it to the floor. Then he pulled his shirt over his head, revealing lots of golden skin and dark hair. John looked good naked, at least his upper body did. Standing, he removed his belt and holster, then opened his pants and pushed them down. His was facing away from Rodney, giving Rodney a nice view of his ass as he bent forward to take off his socks. A really nice view. A spectacular view.

He'd never noticed a guy's ass before, not in any serious way. But John's was worth noticing. It curved in a manner that looked firm and inviting, and made Rodney want to touch.

"There. Naked," John said, sitting back on the bed.

"I noticed."

John turned to look at him, his eyes falling immediately to Rodney's lap, where his cock was sticking out. John's eyes widened.

"What?" Rodney asked, feeling defensive. It was a penis. John had one of his own.

"You, um…"

"Have an erection, yes. That happens to men when they're about to have sex." Rodney kept his eyes on John's face, because if John wasn't hard he didn't want to know.

"But you weren't before I got undressed, which means…"

"That seeing you naked got me hard," Rodney finished for him.

"I've never gotten a guy hard before, not that I know of anyway." John raised his eyes to Rodney's face. "Can I touch it?"

Rodney almost reminded him that they were supposed to be kissing. He almost pointed out that during sex people did usually touch one another's genitals. But John had an almost bashful look on his face, and John never looked bashful. Or hopeful. Now he looked both, so Rodney just said, "Okay."

John reached out and trailed one finger down the side of Rodney's cock, a touch so feather-light that Rodney hardly felt it. Nonetheless, his cock stirred, lifting slightly.

"Cool," John said.

"Um, yeah, real cool." Rodney was trying for sarcastic but all he managed was "embarrassingly breathy". He cleared his throat and tried again. "You could use two fingers, you know. Maybe even your whole hand?"

This time John slipped his hand beneath and cradled it, letting it rest against his palm as his curled his fingers around it. "It feels heavy."

"Because you made it all--" Rodney waved his hands. "Big." He couldn't take his eyes off John's hand, caressing his cock.

"I did, didn't I?"

Before Rodney could protest the level of smugness in John's voice, John's mouth covered his. So Rodney kissed him instead, then moaned and grabbed John's shoulder when John gave his cock a squeeze. Apparently John took that as encouragement because he stroked the entire length of Rodney's cock. Rodney could have sworn the pleasure made it all the way to his toes.

Wanting more, he slid his hand from John's shoulder up to the back of John's head, holding him in place as their kisses grew wilder, hotter. He wanted to be closer still, but sitting up limited how close they could get. Using his weight, he tried to guide John back onto the bed, but John resisted. Rodney pushed a little harder and they both went down onto the bed, with John underneath.


Rodney raised himself up onto one elbow. "Oof?"

"You knocked the wind out of me."

"Sorry." Rodney backed up a little more. "I just-- hey, you're hard."

John lifted his head and looked down at his crotch. "You know, I've heard that happens to men when they're having sex."

It did indeed. "Can I touch it?"

"If you really want to. Don't feel you have to-- Oh."

Rodney closed his hand over John's cock. It was thick and hard and fit nicely in his fist, very nicely, and it was even nicer to stroke it and run his thumb over the head. John made a happy noise, so Rodney did it again. "This isn't weird at all," Rodney said.

"What, you thought my dick would be weird?"

"No," Rodney said in a pained tone. "I thought it would be weird to touch your dick. But it's not." He moved his hand further down, and cupped John's balls. A completely different sensation--soft and hairy.

"Does that mean you like it?"

With a sense of relief, Rodney grinned at him. "Yeah, I do." He had been a little worried that he wouldn't, that fondling John's genitals would be kind of freaky but it was actually fun. Especially with the way John was looking up at him, lips parted, eyes vaguely surprised--he was obviously doing something right. "You like it, too."

"There's a hand on my dick. Of course I like it. And I might like touching you." John paused, drawing a glare from Rodney. "A lot."

"In that case, maybe I should…" Rodney shifted so that he was lying next to John, his cock within easy reach of John's hand.

Rolling onto his side, John wrapped his hand around Rodney's cock.

"This works," Rodney said, giving John's cock a nice slow stroke.

John was looking down, watching their hands moving almost in sync on one another's cocks. "It does."

Rodney was watching, too, because it was an interesting thing to see, John's cock and his hand, his cock and John's hand, very interesting. "I wonder what blow jobs will be like."

Lifting his gaze to Rodney's face, John did that weird eyebrow thing again, "You don't know what a blowjob feels like?"

"Of course I know what it feels like to get one. It's the giving I'm wondering about."

"Maybe we should try it," John suggested, lips turning up and eyebrows turning down in a way that made him look disturbingly like a happy Grinch.

"Yeah, okay." Rodney dropped his gaze back to John's cock. It was sort of attractive looking. He rubbed the head with his thumb, feeling the soft skin. That skin would probably feel nice beneath his lips. Decision made, he sat up.

John rolled onto his back and spread his legs helpfully, but his hand remained wrapped around Rodney's cock.

"You're going to have to let go of that," Rodney told him.

John squeezed.

"Well, maybe not," Rodney added quickly. He scooted up so that his hips were near John's shoulders, then turned and laid back down again, rolling John toward him until he was eye to eye with John's cock.

"This works," John said. He nuzzled Rodney's thigh.

Rodney gasped at the sensation of John's lips on his skin. "It does, doesn't it?" He kissed the tip of John's cock, then ran his tongue over it. John's hips jerked.

"I think we've achieved 'apt'." John sounded vaguely awestruck.

"Ept," Rodney murmured. He licked again. John's cock was fascinatingly smooth against his tongue.

John chuckled, his breath tickling the hairs on Rodney's leg. "Ept."

Rodney slid his mouth down over John's cock, the skin just as smooth over his lips. John drew in a deep, stuttering breath and then Rodney felt something warm and wet slide down over his own cock. With a startled moan Rodney sucked harder, trying to cram more of John's cock into his mouth without scraping it with his teeth and then the warmth traveled down to his balls--John was licking him. And then John let out a breath and it switched from warm and wet to cold and shivery and wow, really, really good.

Then the warmth returned, along with barely there suction that had to be one of the most erotic things Rodney had ever felt. He tried to suck, but as soon as he began to move his mouth John curled his hand around Rodney's cock. Letting go of John, he said, "Maybe we should do this one at a time."

"Probably safer," John agreed, drawing back; Rodney missed his mouth as soon as John let go of him. "How about I do you and then you do me?"

Rodney had wanted to do John first, but he didn't think John would keep his hands to himself long enough for Rodney to get him off, and accidentally biting your lover wasn't very ept. Plus, what John was doing felt really good. "Okay."

The suction returned, even sweeter than before, and John stroked his cock, caressing him. It felt amazingly good and knowing it was John doing this to him, making him feel like this, all warm and aroused and good was even better. Resting his cheek against John's thigh, Rodney looked at the cock in front of him. Dark golden balls, and a full cock, and John smelled sexy and musky. If he'd known another man's body could turn him on like this, he'd have done this years ago.

John moved his hand again, and it was wet this time, sliding easily over his cock while he mouthed Rodney's balls.

Rodney moaned and curled his body around the sensation, tucking his face into John's groin, curls tickling his face as he breathed in the rich, dark scent.

"You like this?" John asked.

"Unngh," Rodney replied.

"I see," John said with a soft chuckle. He shifted, pushing Rodney's legs further apart.

And then it got a little weird. John licked down past Rodney's balls, to the sensitive stretch of skin behind them, creating a curious sensation. "Oh, oh, that's, uh--"

John's tongue slid further back, right over his opening.

"What are you...oh."

John licked again, giving Rodney's cock a firm stroke.

It was weird and inexplicably good at the same time. Wet, but firm and warm, and the more John licked and moved his tongue the better it got. Rodney couldn't imagine that John would even want to put his tongue there. It seemed like a second ago they could barely kiss and now John was putting his tongue up his ass and who would have thought that could feel so good?

John's hand moved on his cock just as his tongue slid in and Rodney realized he was being fucked. John was fucking him. With his tongue. Part of him was still marveling that John would want to do something so dirty, but the rest of him was getting more lost in the sensations with every caress.

John changed his hand movements, concentrating on the sensitive place on the underside of Rodney's cock, his tongue moving in and out, sliding over nerves Rodney hadn't even realized he had. Groaning, he pressed his face into John's balls, surrounding himself with their softness and John's scent, so male and welcoming.

Ept, John was ept. John was very ept. He was so ept he was going to make Rodney come.

"John," he whispered. It was only fair that he give some warning. His hips twitched and jerked, but with John lying over a thigh he could hardly move them. It was an odd position--he had no control and that only made it hotter.

Then John moved and Rodney couldn't figure out what was going on. Something else pushing inside--not a tongue any more, but a finger--John was fingering him and pushing his leg up, leaving him open and exposed and penetrated and oh god, mouth on his cock--

Rodney came, muscles squeezing down around John's finger, his cock pushing into John's mouth and Rodney couldn't stop moaning and he didn't even care that he couldn't stop. It had been way too long since he'd felt this good.

When John finally let go of his leg Rodney rolled onto his back, head sliding off of John's thigh and hitting on the mattress with a thump. "Wow," he gasped. "You--you--that was good."

He raised his head to see John wiping come from his chin. "I kind of messed up at the end there. I didn't realize you'd wiggle around so much when you came."

"I was too busy coming to notice. Believe me." Rodney still couldn't catch his breath.

"Really?" John brightened. He had a streak of come on his neck.

Sitting up, Rodney shifted so that he was lying down next to John. "You have, um…" He touched the fluid on John's neck.

"Oh." John started to reach up.

Catching his hand, Rodney pushed it back to the bed. He edged closer. "Let me." Pressing his mouth to John's neck, he sucked his own fluid from John's skin.

John groaned, tilting his head back, and Rodney began to kiss his way lower. He mouthed the curve of John's shoulder, sucked lightly on a nipple, nuzzled John's stomach. The entire time John shifted beneath him, moving into his touch. It made Rodney feel ept, really, really ept.

Reaching John's cock, he slid his mouth up the side. It felt just as good against his lips as it had earlier.

"Rodney." John reached out, his hand landing on the side of Rodney's head.

Rodney wrapped his lips around the head of John's cock and slid downward, taking in as much of John's cock as he could. Adding suction, he moved upward again, caressing John with his lips and tongue. Flicking his tongue across the head, he went back down.

He knew he was probably moving too slowly, but he wanted to savor the feel of John in his mouth. Because it felt good, which should have been weird but somehow wasn't.

"Oh, nice," John said with a sigh, and it was so heartfelt that Rodney had to smile, which was surprisingly difficult with a mouthful of cock. He chuckled to himself, managing to close his mouth again and suck some more, all of which John seemed to enjoy.

When John pulled his legs up, Rodney reached underneath and cupped his ass. John had a nice, tight ass, one that fit perfectly in his hands. He slipped a finger down into the cleft - he had certainly enjoyed being touched there when John did it to him. He wondered if he should use his tongue, but he wasn't sure how to get there, not in this position, and he wasn't quite sure he was ready for that--but maybe a finger?

Experimentally, he ran his finger over John's opening.

"Oh, oh, Rodney--do that again."

He did it again. John pushed his hips toward him, so he decided to try easing his finger inside. But there was too much friction and he couldn't get more than the very top of his finger in. He'd been wet from all that licking when John had done it to him, which meant that saliva would probably work. He opened his mouth enough to slide a finger in alongside John's cock.

This whole guy sex thing was weird.

Finger wet, he pulled it free and touched John's opening again. This time he was able to ease a little way inside. Wow, was it tight, but soft, a kind of soft tightness, or tight softness. He pressed forward with his finger, and then to the side, turning it in a small circle.

John made a really hot, groaning, moany sound.

Rodney pushed further and did the circle thing again. This time his finger brushed against a firm, barely there bulge.

John's hips bucked, so Rodney did it again.

"Rodney, please, please. Rodney."

Anything that could make John sound like that had to be the coolest thing ever. Pleased, Rodney continued stroking John on the inside, while focusing his mouth action on the head of John's cock. His jaw was starting to ache--being this ept wasn't easy-- but he was up to the challenge, especially since John was sounding more and more desperate. The cock in his mouth thickened further, which was pretty interesting, because Rodney thought it was fully hard already but now he could feel even more blood rushing into it, and huh, that was a loud shout--

A rush of warm fluid filled Rodney's mouth as John came. Startled, Rodney swallowed, or at least tried to. It was more volume than he had expected and the way John's muscles were moving around his finger distracted him. It had been really cool to feel John coming like that, but now his mouth was filling up and maybe if he spit into his free hand John wouldn't notice.

He quickly wiped his hand on the bed sheet.

John whimpered one last time and went still, spent cock dripping on his thigh. Rodney carefully withdrew his finger as he sat up. John twitched but didn't open his eyes.

Grinning, Rodney bent down and pressed his lips to John's knee.

John still didn't move.

Rodney crawled up over his body, pausing to kiss John's hip, his stomach, his hairy, hairy chest. Finally he reached John's face. John opened one eye to look at him, looking looked spent and debauched and other good things. "We're definitely ept," Rodney said, mouth breaking into a grin.

Wrapping an arm around him and pulling Rodney against him, John said, "Very ept."

Rodney slipped to the side so that he was nestled against John instead of on top of him and stretched out an arm and a leg, resting them on top of John. "I knew I would be."

He didn't need to look to know John had rolled his eyes, but he felt too good to care. Turning his head just enough to kiss John's chest, he closed his eyes and basked in the glow.