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Invisible By Day


Title: Invisible By Day

Author: chelle

Author's email:

Author's URL:

Fandom: Atlantis

Archive: Ask first

Rating: NC 17

Pairing: John/Rodney

AN: Written for Grrrl's birthday. I am indebted to kagey for the beta.

"I never thought you would be upset about a birthday."

John glared at him. "I'm not upset."

"Right. Which is why you snapped at Teyla this morning."

Frowning, John leaned back on the lab stool and crossed his arms. "How do you know about that?"

Rodney smiled his close-lipped, smug smile. "I know everything that happens in this city."

John doubted that. "Are you almost done?"

"Yes, I'm almost done. Anxious?" Rodney resumed working on whatever-it-was that was on his laptop. John hadn’t asked. If it was important, Rodney would tell him about it. Of course, Rodney considered everything he gave attention to important.

"I just want to hide before someone jumps out and yells 'surprise.'"

"Why would anyone do that? Just because you're turning forty. The big four-oh. Four whole decades."

"Remind me again why I wanted to spend the evening with you."

"To avoid people who yell 'surprise.'"

John nodded once. "Right."

Rodney closed his laptop and stood. "Come on."

John followed him out of the lab and into a transporter. "Where are we going?"

"The jumper bay."

John frowned. "We don't need to take a transporter to the jumper bay."

"We do if we want to avoid the mess." Rodney touched a location near the jumper bay on the map.

A moment later they stepped into an empty hall. "Surprise party, huh?"

"We can go if you want."

John stopped walking and thought about it. Everyone had undoubtedly gone to a lot of trouble and he should probably do his duty and go. Play the hero, smile and make nice. He studied Rodney's face. Rodney was trying to look neutral, like anything John decided would be fine with him. He wasn’t succeeding. "I'd rather go with you," John said. Which was true. With Rodney he didn't have to smile or make nice unless he felt like it. And today he really didn't feel like it.

Rodney rubbed his hands together. "Good." He titled his head in the direction of the bay, then pivoted toward it and resumed walking.

With a smile and a small shake of his head, John resumed following.

"Where are we going?" John asked as he settled behind the controls of Jumper One.

"You'll see."

"I can't fly if I don't know where we're going."

Rodney tapped his radio and turned the shotgun seat toward the cockpit window. "This is Jumper One. Dial it up." Giving him an expectant look, Rodney said, "Well?"

John touched the controls and the jumper sprang to life. Feeling for the first time all day like it was a birthday, John guided the jumper into the gate room and through the gate.

They came out above a planet John didn't recognize, although most of the planets with gates tended to look the same from space, all green plants and ocean. Rodney leaned across the center console and pointed away from the planet. "That way."

"You mean ten o'clock?" John asked, just to get an exasperated huff.

"I mean that way," Rodney said and pointed again.

John banked the jumper that way. "How long till we get there?"

"We'll get there when we get there."

"Where is there?"

"You'll see." Rodney's smug smile was back.

Biting back his own smile, John wondered how many times he'd get to ask 'are we there yet' before they arrived.

As it turned out, not many. After about twenty minutes he could see light in the distance, and within forty it was filling the cockpit.

"It's an emission nebula," Rodney said, staring out the cockpit window, looking like a kid in a really, really cool toy store, where they had telescopes and model rockets.

"Like Orion," John said, knowing his eyes were as wide as Rodney's.

"Exactly. Look at the reflection coming off that cloud over there." Rodney pointed to the left.

The blue light reflected off the cloud was breathtaking, but something else caught John's eye. He pointed. "Some stars have formed back there." John was pretty sure the red light was being caused by newly formed stars ionizing the surrounding hydrogen gas. Rodney nodded, and John congratulated himself on getting it right.

He couldn't stop looking around, trying to take in the entire thing at once. Everywhere he looked there were glowing gases and clouds of dust. Knowing what was causing the light only made it more beautiful, not less. "I used to love to look at the Orion Nebula when I was a kid. It was a pain in the ass to get into view with our crappy telescope, but it was worth it."

"And now you're flying through one."

Rodney was looking at him now, not the nebula, and John turned to face him. "I am." Subtlety was never going to be one of Rodney's strengths and you didn't have to be a genius to get what Rodney was telling him. They were living in another galaxy, doing things most people didn't even know were possible. "What do you say we check out those new stars?"

"It's your birthday."

"Yes, yes it is."


John was still smiling when they walked into his quarters. There were two pieces of cake and a note from Elizabeth. "Too bad you missed the party, but I saved you some cake. Happy Birthday."

"It's white," Rodney said, looking over John's shoulder.

"I like white cake." John put Elizabeth's note back on the table he used as a desk.

"If you're going to go to the trouble of making a cake, at least make it chocolate."

John glared at him and considered reminding Rodney that it was his birthday not Rodney's, but Rodney looked so pleased with his own ability to be irritating that John couldn't quite bring himself to do it. "That was a great present. Thank you."

Rodney beamed.

Beaming Rodney had a combination of innocence and happiness that John found hard to resist. Which is the only explanation he had for why he kissed Rodney. The kiss didn't last long, just long enough for John to feel how soft Rodney's lips were.

Rodney was staring at him, slightly parted lips and big eyes, and John stared back. He should say something. He knew that. But it was hard to come up with words when all you could hear was your heart beating way too fast.

But Rodney needed an answer, an explanation, something, so John gave him the only one he had. He kissed him again. This kiss was longer, but John was pretty sure it was the most tentative one he'd given since Susan Richards at his first junior high dance. Tentative as it was, it was still enough to make him want to push closer.

"We can't," Rodney said when they parted.

John nodded, but Rodney continued anyway. "There's your career, and we're on the same team, which you command…"

"Our friendship," John said, interrupting.

"That, too. Especially that."

Nodding again, John took a half-step closer to Rodney, closing what little space there was between them. When their lips met, Rodney made a quiet sound that might have been desire and might have been fear. John was pretty sure it was both.

Easy, kissing Rodney was easy, even with the fear. His lips were soft and teasable, and he was so willing. His willingness made John willing, or maybe it was the other way around.

"You kiss well," John said when they finally parted. It was as good an explanation for his behavior as any.

Rodney shook his head. "We kiss well. Kissing is interactive. Someone who's a really good kisser with one person could be a terrible kisser with someone else."

That made sense. "We kiss well," he said. Except for the kisses, John still hadn't touched Rodney, and he wanted to. He really wanted to. It was taking effort to keep his hands at his sides. It couldn't hurt to touch Rodney's neck, to run his fingers along just a bit of that skin. So he did.

Rodney's eyes grew wider when John touched the place just below his ear. Rodney's skin was as smooth as it looked, and John slid his fingertips all the way down to the collar of Rodney's shirt. Then John had to lean down, had to kiss him again. It was slow and full of the tension that came from knowing you shouldn't do something but were going to do it anyway. One kiss led to another and John slid his hand around to the back of Rodney's neck, cupping it as the kiss deepened, as Rodney's hands landed on John's waist before sliding around to John's back. By the time it ended, they were pressed tightly together and John could feel how much Rodney wanted this.

Knew Rodney could feel how much he wanted it.

"I don't know how to do this," Rodney said, his eyes not quite meeting John's.

"We're in another galaxy, Rodney."

Rodney's eyes met his for a long moment. Then Rodney kissed him. Sometimes Rodney was as good at getting points as he was at making them.

As soon as Rodney let him go, John bent down and began removing his boots.

"Um, John?"

John smiled up at him. "Just getting comfortable."

"Oh, okay."

He untied Rodney's left boot with a quick tug on the lace. "You should get comfortable, too."

"How comfortable are we getting?" Rodney asked, bending down to remove his own boots.

"Hopefully very, but I figure we can take our time getting there." John kissed him quickly then stood and undid his belt and holster while Rodney finished with his shoes. He placed it on the table next to his bed and then lay on his side, watching Rodney. Rodney removed his own holster and draped it over John's desk chair.

Standing at the edge of the bed, Rodney frowned down at him. "Are you sure about this?"

"Yes." John said it without hesitation. He wanted this, wanted Rodney to lie down next to him so they could kiss some more and get more comfortable, and maybe eventually get very comfortable.

Rodney lay next to him, also on his side, and John smiled at him. "Come here often?" he asked.

Laughing, Rodney said, "That line works for you, doesn't it?"

Shaking his head, John kissed him quickly. "Never tried it before."

"No, I've never been here before."

"Me, either."

"It's your bed," Rodney said.

"I was speaking metaphorically." Another kiss, longer this time. "I always kind of wondered, though."

"And since you aren't getting any younger…"

John drew back. "No. That's not it. It's you." There was a hint of disbelief in Rodney's face, but only a hint. "It's you," John repeated and kissed him. No hesitation this time, just desire, one kiss feeding into the next, both of them shifting until they were pressed together and John had one leg on Rodney's hip and a hand under his shirt.

Rodney's skin was soft here, too, and the hair scattered across his abdomen was fine. John felt like he was touching something valuable, something important, something he had to be careful not to break. Except Rodney wasn't fragile and Rodney didn't break, not easily. John was still careful, stroking Rodney's skin as he edged his hand up to Rodney's chest.

When he brushed a nipple Rodney sucked in a breath, so he did it again. Then he lifted his arm away from Rodney's skin, causing Rodney's shirt to pool around his own wrist. After that it took only a slight shifting of his hand to expose Rodney's nipple. Tiny and round, John had to take it into his mouth.

Tight, firm skin beneath his tongue, Rodney's skin, and John groaned at the thought of it, at the way it felt, at the way Rodney arched, lifting himself toward John's mouth.

Sitting up, he tugged at Rodney's shirt. "Take this off."

Rodney did as John asked, sitting up and pulling his t-shirt over his head and dropping it to the floor next to the bed.

John stared. He had Rodney's bare chest in front of him. Curly hair and tiny nipples. Broad shoulders. John wanted to press himself against it, wanted to touch, wanted… He pressed his hand to the center of Rodney's chest the way a Wraith would, only gentle and easy.

"You, too," Rodney said, pulling at John's shirt.

Withdrawing his hand, he removed his shirt, dropping it to the floor with Rodney's.

"I get to touch too, you know," Rodney said, copying John by placing his hand in the center of John's chest.

"I'm counting on it," John said. But before Rodney could do much touching, John kissed him again, easing them down onto the bed, so he could press himself against Rodney and feel the warmth of Rodney's skin against his.

Rodney's cock was pressing against his hip. It was going to be his soon. He was going to touch it, and maybe taste it. John slid his mouth from Rodney's lips to his neck, tasting the skin there, sucking lightly. Rodney tilted his head to the side, encouraging him, and Rodney's hands slid up John's back, broad and warm.

Rodney arched, pushing his cock into John's hip even more firmly. John wanted to slide down and open Rodney's pants and take him in hand. But he didn't. This might be the only chance he was going to get to do this, and he was going to make it count.

He had kissed his way along Rodney's collarbone to the hollow at the base of his throat, when a hand in his hair guided him upward, guided his mouth back to Rodney's. This kiss was slow, but deep and hot and perfect. Rodney's mouth was perfect, big and warm, and he tasted good.

John groaned into the kiss.

"I look at you all the time," Rodney said, his voice lower than John had ever heard it. "I can't stop. Your face, it's just so weird."

"I know I'm a guy, but I'm pretty sure that it's still bad form to tell the person you're having sex with that his face is weird." John gazed down at him and tried to sound insulted, but he was more amused than anything else.

Rodney flushed. "That didn't come out right."

"I hope not."

"What I mean is that your expressions are fascinating, if a bit goofy."

John couldn't help it. He started to laugh. Rodney's track record with women suddenly made a lot more sense, but he wasn't about to say that. John knew what to say in bed. And, more importantly, what not to say.

"That didn’t come out right, either," Rodney said, wrapping his arms around John's shaking shoulders.

"It's all right," John said. "I'm flattered anyway."


John grinned. "Okay, I'm not insulted enough to stop."

Rodney pulled him into a kiss, and John let Rodney roll him onto his back, let Rodney kiss and touch, let Rodney tease his nipples and caress his stomach, until he had to touch too.

It was so damned good, feeling Rodney against him, broad and solid, completely different from the women John was used to holding. But his skin was sweet to the touch, and sweeter to taste. And there was so much of it.

Finally, Rodney's exposed skin wasn't enough and John cupped Rodney's cock through his pants. Rodney gasped and pushed against him. John didn't have words for how hot that was, for the way it all just kind of shot through him, Rodney gasping and moving, and the feel of his cock against John's palm, even through layers of clothes.

"Help me take these off," John said, trying to undo the button on Rodney's pants single-handedly.

Rodney pushed his hand away, and John gave up on helping, sitting back to watch as Rodney pushed his pants and briefs down and off and then quickly stripped off his socks. As soon as he lay back down, John reached for his cock, but Rodney caught his wrist in a sure grip. "Not until you're naked, too."

Forcing his eyes away from Rodney, John made quick work of his remaining clothes. Then he was lying next to Rodney, both of them naked and staring. Rodney had thick, hairy legs, and his cock was thick too, rising out of a nest of a curly, dark hair. Swallowing, John reached out. Rodney didn't stop him this time, and his hand connected with smooth, firm flesh. He ran his fingers up the side of the shaft, learning just how smooth it was.


John raised his eyes from his fingers on Rodney's cock to Rodney's face. There was Rodney, looking fate straight in the eye, just like always. This was real. This was him and Rodney, naked, having sex in his bed. "This is us," he said hoping Rodney would understand. Apparently he did, because Rodney nodded and John kissed him gently, wanting Rodney to know that he wasn't the only naked one, that John was as stripped bare as he was.

"I want to touch you." At this very moment it felt like John had never wanted anything as much as he wanted to touch Rodney's cock, really touch it, feel the weight of it in his hand.

"You are touching it," Rodney said.

"So I am," John said, stroking his fingers along the side again before wrapping his hand around it.

"Oh, God." Rodney arched, lifting his hips, and John stroked him from the head to the base.

Kissing him just beneath his ear, John whispered, "Shh, it's okay." He stroked again. "I've got you."

Rodney turned toward him, his mouth latching onto John's, and kissed him deeply. John drew in a shaky breath when they parted. Maybe he didn't have Rodney. Maybe Rodney had him.

Moving, he knelt between Rodney's legs, feeling a rush of heat when Rodney parted his legs to make room for him. Holding Rodney's cock straight up, he stroked him again, liking the way it filled his hand.

Full balls drew his attention and John touched them lightly with his free hand. Rodney's scrotum was soft. John explored both balls with his hand, learning their weight, exploring the stretch of Rodney's sac with his fingers. Then he slid his fingers into Rodney's hair. It was wiry, but it didn't feel as coarse as John's own. He liked the feel of it, liked the look of it, of hair, and balls, and cock.

Rodney's cock.

Holding it by the base, he rubbed the head with the fingers of his other hand. It was smooth, and the curve of it felt nice. He traced the slit with his index finger, and Rodney gasped his name.

Feeling the smile spreading across his face, he looked up at Rodney. "This is really cool."

"You think my cock is cool?"

John nodded. "The kissing was pretty cool, too."

Rodney laughed at him. Needing a distraction from the sudden surge of affection, John bent down and kissed the head.

The laughter stopped. "Oh, God," Rodney said, again.

"I thought you were an atheist." John tried not to sound smug, but he didn't try very hard.

"Having the sexiest man in the galaxy put his lips on my cock might be enough to convert me."

Sexiest man in the galaxy. John had enough of an ego to like that description. "I thought you'd never done this before?"

"I haven't. But I have eyes," Rodney said, with more than a hint of affection in his voice.

John knew his smile was smug, but he didn't even try to change it.

"Feel free to resume your efforts to convert me whenever you're ready."

Pressing his lips together as though he was thinking about it, he gave Rodney's cock a long, slow stroke. Then another. Rodney's eyes closed, but only for a moment. John wondered if he felt the same need to watch that John did.

His eyes on Rodney's face, John leaned down again. This time when he kissed, he touched Rodney's cock with the tip of his tongue, tasting him. Then he did it again, and again, until he had to just give in, open his lips around the head, and take Rodney in.

Rodney groaned, deep and wondrous. John would have made a similar sound, but he had a cock in his mouth. Rodney's cock. And Rodney's cock was an amazing thing. It caressed his lips and tongue as he moved, and filled his mouth in a way that felt good, that made him want to take more of Rodney in, made him want to take in all of Rodney.

But he gagged slightly when Rodney's cock touched the back of his throat, so he had to settle for using his hand to caress the part of Rodney he couldn't get into his mouth.

Rodney didn't seem to mind. He was staring at John like John was more amazing than a really cool nebula. Then he trailed his fingers over the side of John's face, and John wanted to make him come. He wanted to make Rodney shake with pleasure, wanted to watch it.

He sucked a little harder.

Rodney groaned, his hand dropping to the sheet and clenching into a fist.

John kept his movements slow but steady, drawing Rodney as far as in as he could on every downward motion, rubbing the head with his tongue on every upward one.

"Oh… Oh, God, John."

Salty fluid flooded his mouth, and John had to concentrate on swallowing. Then he remembered to watch. Rodney's head was arched back and John couldn't see his face, but he could hear his soft groans and feel the pulse of his cock.

Releasing Rodney's cock with a final kiss, John shifted so that he was stretched out next to Rodney, resting his weight on one elbow and leaning over him slightly.

Gazing up at him, Rodney shook his head slightly. "You just… I can't believe you did that. You blew me."


"You swallowed."

John licked his upper lip. "Yup."

With another shake of his head, Rodney slid a hand into John's hair and pulled him into a kiss. A deep, determined kiss.

While they were kissing Rodney rolled them so John was on his back, with Rodney half-sprawled across him. He slid a hand down John's chest to his cock, and John hissed in surprise. "My turn," Rodney said.

"It won't take much." Blowing Rodney had turned him on, really turned him on, and John felt like he could go off any minute. Like all Rodney would have to do was kiss him in that really dirty way again, or maybe say something sexy, and John would just come all over them both.

"So you're telling me I'm not going to get much of a turn." Rodney sounded so genuinely put out that John couldn't help but smile.


"Next time I get to go first."


Rodney's mouth covered his nipple and the smile fell from John's face. Sweet suction was sending pleasure all the way to his balls, and John's other nipple was a little disappointed when Rodney skipped it, sliding down to kiss and pet John's stomach instead.

His hand was still around John's cock, and he rubbed the underside with his thumb, making John groan.

When Rodney lifted himself up onto his knees, John parted his legs, wanting Rodney to kneel between them.

Rodney did, and John groaned again when Rodney leaned down and buried his face in John's crotch. Then his mouth closed around one of John's balls, sucking lightly, just enough pressure to create a pleasurable tug. Maybe Rodney was going to introduce him to God, too, John thought, before Rodney switched sides and did the thing with his thumb again and coherent thought became impossible.

Rodney licked the back of John's cock with a long, slow swipe of his tongue.

He swirled his tongue over and around the head until John lifted his hips, silently asking.

Then his mouth closed over the head. Sweet, blissful suction. Maybe John could start to believe because this was Rodney. His cock was in Rodney's mouth. Rodney was sucking on him.

He didn't want to come, didn't want to stop. He wanted this weird, crazy thing to keep happening, wanted to pull Rodney up and into his arms, and press against him, and…

There it was. Pleasure just pouring out of him, and Rodney swallowing and tugging, pulling even more pleasure through him and into Rodney. Into Rodney. He arched, trying to get closer.

Then it was over and he fell back onto the bed, breathing hard, still feeling it in strange pulses that came all the way up from his feet. Rodney was there, leaning over him, and John wrapped his arms around him, pulling him close.

Rodney's bulk felt really good, and John kissed his shoulder just because he could.

"That was good," Rodney said.

It had been better than good. "Since when did you become the master of understatement?" John asked.

Rodney lifted himself up, looking down at John, a broad smile on his face. "How would you describe it?"

"Really good." John nodded decisively. "Definitely really good. And next time you get to go first," John reminded him.

Smile fading, Rodney said, "What about all those good reasons?"

"We flew through a nebula tonight."

After looking at him for a long moment, Rodney settled against him with a small hum. "Yes, we did."

Relieved that Rodney understood, John kissed the top of his head.

Rodney didn't seem to mind, so John arranged his arms comfortably around Rodney's shoulders and closed his eyes.

"This was the best birthday I've had in years," he said after a moment.

"You're welcome."

John smiled. Definitely the best birthday he'd had in years, and he hadn’t even eaten his cake yet.