SHE'S SENDING ME VICIOUS TOYING EMAIL I CANNOT ANSWER!
"Five. I was five."
Rodney closes his eyes against the edge of desperation bleeding through the toneless voice. "Five. That's when your father took you up in a jet. That's when you knew you wanted to fly."
John's head in his lap turns, dark eyes as unreadable as blank glass. He's lost weight again--Rodney hadn't known the chair could do that, because God knew, they got enough to eat, but John's worn down to bone and thin skin, angular beneath the loose cotton-like clothes they'd been given when their uniforms gave out. Pared down, and somehow, it makes him look weirdly younger, dangerously fragile.
A little shake rocks him, and Rodney braces his hands on John's shoulders until it passes. A few seconds, and John evens out again. It takes longer every night. If John's not a junkie for them already, he will be soon. "I don't remember my mother."
Rodney hadn't ever thought to ask about her. Fuck. "She was like you. Smart. Sharp." Carefully, he touches John again. Body memory, he thinks, when John doesn't jerk away instantly. "Brilliant."
"Homicidal." Thinning lips twist, and John tries to pull away. He could, easily, but Rodney tightens his fingers.
"No. You're not."
He is, an unsheathed knife, a gun with a broken safety. Rodney hadn't known how to hate like this--the Wraith were the manifestations of the boogeymen of childhood closets and nightmares, but even that paled to the here and now of watching them take John and then bring him back a little less.
The sheer, unending nausea of watching John pulled to pieces in front of his eyes; knowing that John comes back every day knowing there's something forever missing. He keeps his touch gentle, and John relaxes back into him, eyes closing with a sigh, going boneless. Not asleep--he doesn’t sleep without whatever they give him to counteract whatever the fuck else they give him to get him in that chair--but almost, almost at peace.
"Rodney." John's voice is soft, echoes of an amused drawl from a lifetime ago, when that and a smile could light up a room, no ATA gene required. When he could take Rodney's breath with just a look. "I remember your name, you know."
Rodney smiles, and his hands move on their own, brushing across dark hair gently, just feeling him here. "Yeah?"
"Even--" John shivers again, and Rodney reaches for the blanket, pulling it up around the too-thin body, tucking it securely. They've fallen asleep like this, John's arm, like now, wrapped tightly around his thigh, like Rodney might vanish if he doesn't. Waking up with those fingers twisted in the front of his shirt, face buried against his side. Rodney can't remember a time he wasn't able to touch John. "Even when I forget mine."
Rodney forces himself to breathe, stroking the dark hair back. "I'll remember for us both."
I will mpreg every character you ever loved Harlenquin romance style, I swear.