:: Updated due to formatting errors. Fixed 18/02/2017 ::
Title: Carriers and Compatibility
Rating: PG-13 so far
Fandom: Stargate Atlantis
Current Word Count: 5,409
Warnings: soulmates; self-denial, possible self-destructive thoughts/actions, minor character death, tv-level violence, probable swearing, homophobia to some degree, others as they come up
Disclaimer: I do not own the characters named in this, nor the associated media. The plot however, is mine. No money is being made from this piece of fiction and no harm is meant by it towards anyone.
Summary: Everyone on Earth knows that soulbonds exist. Call them what you will, be it The One, soulmates, bonded, ‘mates, Destined or anything else that means that they were made for each other, they exist.
There isn’t any hard and fast rule about who will find their ‘mate, how they’ll meet or when they’ll meet, but there are enough similarities between bondings that scientists have managed to devise a series of tests that identify the potential for a bond in about 70% of the population with current data. John and Rodney had never given the phenomena much thought other than one certainty. That neither of them had a ‘mate out there waiting for them.
John rolled over and looked at the neon red numbers on his clock. Oh three hundred.
Great. Less than two hours this time. He thought as he exhaled sharply, regretting the action almost as soon as he’d started it. John winced at the pain that shot across his skull just behind his eyes and finally admitted to himself that there might just be something wrong with him. Maybe. As he knew that he’d never forgive himself if he was the reason that his next flight crashed, John dragged himself out of bed and over to the infirmary, pulling a t-shirt and cargo pants on before he got to the door of his quarters.
The infirmary was quiet, the lights just bright enough to see the edges of beds and cupboards. The only patient in the room was asleep at the far end; the occasional quiet snore could just be heard if John stayed motionless. After taking everything in and realising that the nurses on duty (at least two distinct voices, one masculine, the other feminine) were in a triage room ahead and to his left and who he presumed was this shifts Doctor was in the Duty Doctor’s office to his right, John walked slowly over to the triage room, opened the door with a gentle knock and leant against the door frame.
“What can we help you with tonight, Sir?” Asked the nearest nurse (male, late thirties, very short black hair, dark brown eyes, probably over 6 foot tall when standing, John categorised with a quick once over). John ran a hand through his hair before he spoke.
“I was hoping I could get a couple of Tylenol.”
“Trisha, is it just me, or do we actually have an officer in here requesting medical help before he becomes a patient?” The male nurse asked the other nurse, Trisha (early thirties, blonde, can’t see eye colour at this distance but wears glasses, probably 5 and a half feet or just over when she stands), with a grin as he stood and walked over to John. Before he had taken two steps, Trisha spoke.
“No, clearly you’re hallucinating. Again. Go and deal with you hallucination before clocking out for the night, Ben.” Trisha said, all the while sorting through a stack of papers. As the male nurse, Ben, walked over to him, John straightened up and moved so that Ben could walk out of the room without either of them bumping in to each other, all the while grinning at the friendly banter between Trisha and Ben.
“If you’ll just follow me, Sir.” Ben led John into the empty triage room immediately to the left of the one that they had just left. “And I’m Nurse Wilson, or Ben if you prefer.” John tipped his head in acknowledgement.
“Why makes you think that I’m an officer?”
“There’s no way that you’re an enlisted man with hair like that. Sorry Sir, but not even the Air Force would let an enlisted man keep their hair in that manner. Plus, you speak as if you expect to be followed, even if you don’t know that you’re doing it.”
“Huh.” John blinked at the response and his right hand moved as if to touch his hair, but realising that that would just add fuel to the fire, he aborted the movement, making it nothing more than a minor twitch that no one could make out in the twilight of the infirmary.
“So, name, rank and all that, and what seems to be the problem tonight?” Ben asked as he stood next to an empty bed, indicating for John to take a seat on it. As if by magic, medical papers and a pen appeared in Ben’s hands and he looked at John expectedly.
“Major John Sheppard and I, uh, have a headache that’s lasted a few days and I might have been not sleeping because of it.” John replied, not looking Ben in the face as he spoke, as he knew that he should have reported the headache as soon as it had lasted for 24 hours without abating.
“I can see that you know that you should’ve reported here before now, so I won’t lecture you on it. I can’t say that no one else will though.” Ben said with a shake of his head. “Before I can give you the Tylenol I have just a few questions to run through; just standard protocol.”
“Do you have any other symptoms, such as loss of appetite, dizziness, fatigue, chills or a fever, Major?”
“Not the chills or a fever, but the rest, but only because the headache flares up when I do anything that causes my head to move a lot.” John replied.
“And you didn’t think this was something that should be brought to the attention of a medical professional sooner rather than later, hmm?”
“It didn’t seem like much, but even I know that I can’t continue on two hours of sleep or thereabouts per night indefinitely.”
“When did the headache start, the day, Major. No more vagaries.”
“Last Wednesday, a bit after lunch. Before you ask, yes, I had been feeling a bit off since dinner the night before. Nothing too bad and Ii figured that it would pass shortly.”
“Are you saying, that in the last four nights, you have had a maximum of roughly 8 hours of sleep?” Ben asked, tone going from friendly to serious with a hint of worried in less than a second. John just shrugged.
“I guess so.”
“Any aches or pains other than the headache? No hits to the head in the 24 hours before the headache started?”
“Nothing new and no head shots recently.”
“I’m going to check your pupils and then your blood pressure, but first of all, open wide.” As Ben spoke, he picked up a tongue depressor and tilted John’s head back as John opened his mouth.
After each check, Ben made notes on the papers that he had recorded all of John’s answers regarding the headache. When they got to John’s blood pressure, Ben’s eyebrows jumped so high that they nearly became one with his hairline.
“Major, I need you to lie down right now. Don’t move unless you’re about to vomit. I’ll be back with Dr. Quinn in just a moment.” With that, Ben all but ran from the triage room, presumably to the on-call Doctor’s office.
John lay down on the bed, panic trying to seep through his veins as Ben’s urgent words and furrowed brow replayed themselves in his head. He pushed the panic down until he could barely feel it. There’s nothing wrong with me but a persistent headache that’s throwing my vitals off a little. That’s all.
The door opened and Ben walked in with who John presumed was the Doctor (early forties, black, 6 foot give or take, gives off a “don’t fuck with me” attitude that’d make drill Sergeants weep) close behind him.
“I’m Doctor Mills. Ben here tells me that you have a headache that’s persisted for at least four days now, correct?” The Doctor said as he looked John over like a particularly interesting specimen. John resisted the urge to squirm, Majors in the US Air Force don’t squirm like a goddamned child, as he lay on the examination bed.
“That’s right, Doc.”
“I’d like to do a blood test as the stats I have here aren’t clear on anything other than it’s not just a headache that you have, Major.”
“Whatever you need Doc. I just want to stay flight worthy.” John replied quickly, the panic loosening from the tight grasp that he held it in.
At some unseen signal from Dr. Mills, Ben rummaged in a cupboard and passed Dr. Mills a couple of items that turned out to be a needle and a surprisingly large number of vials.
“Do you really need that much blood? There’s got to be at least … six vials there.” John said his eyebrows rising as he counted the number of that he could see.
“Trust me, it’ll be easier this way as well as quicker.” Dr. Mills said as he slid a needle effortlessly into a vein in the crook of John’s right arm. A calm silence descended on the room as Dr. Mills filled vial after vial with blood, labelling them in surprisingly neat handwriting for a Doctor. When they were all filled and Ben had taken them out of the room, presumably to the medical lab next to the infirmary, John tried to sit up only to have Dr. Mills’ hand on his chest, firmly pushing him back onto the bed.
“Stay there, Major, we’re not finished yet.” Dr. Mills pulled over a chair that John hadn’t seen in the room before, and sat down. “It’ll be a while until even the quickest of the blood tests are done and you’re in dire need of rest, so you’re staying here until shift change at the least. Whilst you’re still awake, we might as well get the rest of my questions out of the way.”
John sighed and nodded in agreement.
“Have you consumed anything different to normal in the last week?”
“Have you had any contact with anyone that you thought was ill, in the last week, even if it was ‘just a cold’?”
“Not that I know of.”
The questions continued in this vein for a few more minutes.
“Finally, have you done anything out of routine in the last 7 days, no matter how small a difference?”
“Last Monday I flew a General over to the research base further inland. I was given security clearance to go inside. I can’t talk to you about the base any further than that, security levels and all that.” John replied, remembering the incident with the drone that led to his security clearance being raised so high he hadn’t known that there was a clearance that high.
White. All around him was the blinding white of ice and snow. Being in the elevator taking him deep under the surface of Antarctica was considerably different from flying over it. It was all encompassing and unrelenting other than the few metal bars around them that constituted the elevator.
“So.” General O’Neill said, drawing the word out until it was a sentence in and of itself. “This … research facility … is one of two bases with security so high that the President isn’t even sure if he’s cleared to visit. Your clearance is being upped to allow access. Don’t let me down, Major.”
“No ,Sir. Permission to ask a question, Sir.”
General O’Neill waved his hand as if to say ‘Go on then, let’s get this done’.
O’Neill looked over at John, eyebrow raised.
“Anyone who can fly a chopper like he’s dog fighting in an F-16 gracefully is someone I want in my command.”
John didn’t have a reply for that, so he ducked his head in acknowledgement and thanks, and stayed silent for the rest of the descent. As they hit bottom and were getting out of the elevator, they were accosted by a civilian that the General seemed to know. John looked around, noting the large number of civilians walking around, keeping half an ear on the conversation between O’Neill and the civilian, responding when needed. Then there was the man in the orange fleece.
Oh John didn’t see him immediately, there was a while where John walked round the parts of the base near the elevator and the room that General O’Neill had gone in to for his meeting, and the whole meeting of Dr. Carson Beckett and putting the fear of a highly trained asset who’s angry at you into the poor guy who’d almost blown him & the General into smithereens. By accident.
The man in the orange fleece didn’t turn up until John took a seat in the fancy alien chair. “Come on, what’re the chances of me having the same gene as these guys?” Right, sure, tempt fate why don’t you. Asshat.
When John sat in the chair, he felt a sense of belonging he hadn’t felt since he was very little and his Mom was still alive. That feeling increased and became almost overwhelming when the man in the orange fleece ran up with General O’Neil and a bunch of others. John brought up the map of the solar system with barely a thought, trying his best to not let anything about his feelings show other than a sliver of wonder at the 3 dimensional hologram of the solar system floating above them all.
It wasn’t until he was getting out of the chair that he found out what the man in the orange fleece was called.
A hand grabbed John’s left arm just below the elbow and steadied him as he stood. John pushed down the full body shiver that was trying to make its way along his spine and out to the end of every extremity.
“The ease with which you use the Ancient’s technology is astounding, Major. I need you to come with me and check a couple of items over for me.”
“And why would I want to do that?” John snapped out a little harsher than he had meant to, confusion swilling through him at the feelings that hadn’t gone away and at finding out that he had at least a small amount of alien in his DNA.
“Oh I’m sorry, were you busy figuring out the secrets of the universe whilst preventing morons from blowing themselves up with previously unknown and currently untested alien technology? No, that’s what I do. You, you fly helicopters and shoot a things when you’re told to. Neither of which you’re doing now so you are perfectly free to come with me and initialise a few Ancient items before O’Neill whistles and you go running back to his side.” At that, he turned and stalked off towards what John assumed was his lab. John snorted to himself at the guys attitude but admired the balls he had to order a Major around and all but insult a General.
“Tell me your name first.” John said as he followed a couple of paces behind the guy in the orange fleece.
“Because I can’t keep calling you ‘the guy in the orange fleece’.”
“Oh, Doctor Rodney McKay, PhD, PhD, PhD. Chief Science Officer for this base and Atlantis when we get there.”
“Atlantis? The city that sank beneath the ocean because it fell out of favour with the Greek Gods, that Atlantis?” John asked, head whipping round to face Dr. McKay, eyebrows raised in surprise.
“Yes, no. Yes it existed and probably sank beneath the ocean for some reason, but no, not because it ‘fell out of favour’ with Gods of any belief system, current or not. It was built by the Ancients and was a city ship.” With that, Dr. McKay turned down a side corridor, expounding on the stupidity of the military in general and certain people in particular. John just let it wash over him as he followed, carefully cataloguing as many details about Dr. McKay as he could pick up. They quickly reached their destination and John smothered a grin before it could show on his face, as Dr. McKay berated and insulted everyone working in the lab, working his way through the different work stations like a conductor leading an orchestra through a tricky piece of music. John slouched against a wall and followed Dr. McKay with his eyes, occasionally glancing over at a set of equations covering three separate whiteboards and showing at least two sets of handwriting. He carefully noted where there were mistakes (one at the bottom of the first board and a second almost smack bang in the middle of the third) and took his mind off of the weirdness that had suddenly become his life, by mentally working through the equations and fixing them.
After everyone had been fully berated and the supremacy of Dr. McKay’s intelligence had been re-instated, he picked up a box of slightly off white objects and put it on an empty work station. When John didn’t move, Dr. McKay waved a hand imperiously at John, turning to glare at him when John didn’t immediately jump to attention and run over to where Dr. McKay was.
In return, John raised an eyebrow and ambled slowly over to the station.
“So good of you to join me, Major.” Came the sarcastic comment that John found he was expecting and in fact, looking forward to. At least it wouldn’t be boring working with Dr. McKay until John had to fly out again.
The two of them worked through half of the box with John initialising the items and describing any impressions that he got from them and Rodney recording all of the information and asking questions in an attempt at clarification, before O’Neill tracked them down.
“Time to go, Sheppard” O’Neill said as he stood in the doorway to the lab.
“No! His ability to interface with Ancient Technology is quite possibly stronger than yours, General, but his instinctual understanding of it is unparralled. We need Major Sheppard here and he has got to come with us to Atlantis. We have so much to get through before the expedition leaves that we can’t afford to waste time for him to ferry you around. You’re a pilot, why can’t you fly yourself back?” Dr. McKay said, urgency creeping into his tone only to be slapped down by the return of his natural arrogance.
At the end of Dr. McKay’s attack, O’Neill’s right eyebrow wasn’t so much raised as mating with his hairline. Before anyone could say anything, John stood and walked over to O’Neill.
“I’ll come visit you next time I’m over here, McKay.” John said over his shoulder just before he walked into the corridor and away from the labs. McKay’s reply, if there was one, fell on deaf ears
John and O’Neill hadn’t even got to the end of the corridor before being ambushed by Dr. Beckett.
“And just where do you think you’re going, lad?” Dr. Beckett asked John, completely ignoring O’Neill’s look of ‘why me’ aimed at the ceiling.
“Back to McMurdo. Got a General to return.”
“Not before coming with me, you’re not. Sorry General O’Neill, but I have to do a full medical for Major Sheppard. All newly found ATA gene carriers have to have it done.” At that, he gave John a sympathetic glance, but held his own against O’Neill’s glare. O’Neill blinked first.
“Fine, fine. I know when to pick my battles. Just be quick about it.” O’Neill said to Dr. Beckett and then turned to John.
“Go straight back to the elevator when you’re done in medical. No more sitting in alien chairs for you.”
At that O’Neill strode off down a corridor that John hadn’t the faintest idea where it led, and John followed Carson like a little duckling, over to the infirmary for a full medical check up. Wasn’t it a good thing that he wasn’t fazed by needles or blood?
Less than an hour later, John had been released from the tender mercies of Dr. Beckett and was riding the elevator back up to the surface and his chopper with General O’Neill. They were in the chopper and John was just finishing his pre-flight checks before either of them spoke.
“This isn’t a long trip, so I’ll be as succinct as possible.” O’Neill said, looking at John as he finished the checks and not saying another word.
“Well, that’s pretty succinct.” John replied smoothly.
“I told Doctor Weir that … I’d think about it.”
“And? So? Well? What?!”
John fired the engines up and started lift off.
“All due respect, sir, we were just attacked by an alien missile. Then I found out I have some mutant gene. Then there’s this Stargate thing and these expeditions to other galaxies.” John said nonchalantly, keeping any feelings that he had about the whole situation tightly locked down.
“You know, this isn’t about you, Sheppard. It’s a lot bigger than that.”
“Right now, at this very second, whether I decide to go on this mission or not seems to be about me.” John replied as he put his helmet on, hoping for a second that O’Neill wouldn’t put his on as he wouldn’t have to deal with the General’s questioning if he couldn’t hear him.
“Let me ask you something.” O’Neill said, attempting a different tactic as he grabbed a helmet and put it on. “Why d’you become a pilot?”
“I think people who don’t want to fly are crazy.” John said quickly and firmly.
“And I think people who don’t want to go through the Stargate are equally as whacked. Now if you can’t give me a yes by the time we reach McMurdo, I don’t even want you.” With that, O’Neill stopped talking and let John think it over.
“You could try calling over and asking for a Doctor Carson Beckett. He gave me a quick look over whist I was there. I think he’s their CMO.” John told Dr. Mills. “It was base policy or something.” He added when it looked like Dr. Mills was going to join the ranks of overly upward mobile eyebrow owners.
“Their Chief Medical Officer just happened to give you a check up when you weren’t even stationed on their base? I’ll definitely be having a word with Doctor Beckett.” Dr. Mills said, frowning in thought.
“Nurse Wilson, get the Major here set up in bed three and set up a saline IV with one nutrient dose. Give him two Tylenol as well.” Dr. Mills instructed Ben then looked back to John.
“I’m sure you’ll be glad for the Tylenol. The saline & nutrients are because of your sleep deprivation. Rest as much as you can. I’ll be looking through your medical history, the test results and Doctor Beckett’s notes.” At that Dr. Mills stalked out of the triage room, presumably to his office to call the research base for Dr. Beckett’s notes.
Meanwhile, at the Antarctic Ancient Outpost…
“Rodney, this is the fifth time in as many days that you’ve been brought to me, and the second where you’ve been bleeding! I know you’re a hypochondriac, but don’t you think that this is a wee bit excessive, even for you?” Dr. Beckett said exasperatedly to Rodney as Rodney gingerly climbed up onto an infirmary bed and Dr. Beckett dug a pen out of his pocket and straightened up papers on a clipboard.
“Oh yes, because I have so much spare time that I thought I’d come by and visit the local Medicine Man and give him something to do for once. It’s not as if I’ve got three separate experiments going on, am overseeing a further two, have multiple equations to work on or have any new almost certainly life changing data from the Control Chair to go through, courtesy of our recently discovered, highly powerful ATA positive Air Force Major, oh no. No, what I did was think of all the other people who had no work to do at all, picked you and decided to injure myself in order to give you something to do this afternoon.” Rodney replied, almost spitting the sarcastic barbs out in re-directed pain and anger.
“There’s no need to be rude, Rodney. Keep that up and I’ll be putting a note on your medical file that you’re allergic to all known painkillers and are never to be given any again, not for any reason.” Carson said, looking Rodney right in the eye as he did so. “Stop being an arse and tell me what’s really going on here. You’ve never been this clumsy before, especially not when you’re in such high demand.”
Rodney’s eye’s bulged at the threat to his medical file (which already held far more allergic notices than pretty much anyone in the Stargate Program other than Dr. Jackson) and was about to let loose with a vicious torrent of abuse involving suppositions about Carson’s parentage as a starting point, when he saw the genuine concern on etched in to Carson’s face. At that, Rodney seemed to deflate and he picked at the lint on his pants that wasn’t there instead.
“It, it’s nothing Carson. Or at least, I don’t see how it could be anything, even with the voodoo that you do, it probably isn’t anything other than the normal lack of sleep, over reliance on caffeine as a food group – which I will vehemently protest is its own food group – work related stress and the burden of being the shining beacon of knowledge, logic and reason that is me.” Rodney said, slipping on a mask that mostly looked like normal, if it hadn’t been for the fingers of his left hand playing with the hem of his jacket, worrying a loose thread. “So if you could just clean this up and bandage it before I die of blood loss or develop get septicaemia, it would be appreciated.”
He un-tucked his right hand from where he’d been holding it tight to his side, and placed it in his lap ready for Carson to treat. The cut was barely more than a light graze and had in all reality, most likely stopped bleeding before Rodney had left his lab. What worried Carson more, was the amount of bruising around it as the whole of the back of Rodney’s hand was beginning to bruise a deep purple-black. A couple of bruises from the reasons for the previous four trips to the infirmary this week peeked out from Rodney’s left sleeve and the neck of this fleece. His clothes hid the ones on his back, upper arms and knees.
Carson wiped an alcohol swab over the scabbed over injury, gently dried and applied a band aid carefully palpated the hand.
“Let me know if any of this hurts.”
“Of course it hurts, you witch doctor, it’s bruised as hell and you’re prodding it with your club like fingers. What the hell are you trying to do, break my hand so that I can’t work at all?!”
“Checking for any obvious breaks or fractures. I can’t feel any, but I think it would be best if we did an x-ray. You’re also due for your monthly check up, so we’ll get that done whilst we wait for the x-rays to be printed.”
“Oh what, no it can’t be the 12th already? You just get a perverse pleasure from sticking me full of needles and draining my blood away, don’t you Carson? Just admit it, you’re secretly a vampire, aren’t you.”
“Yes, of course. You’ve stumbled across my big secret. It’s not that I’m a trained Doctor or your friend and just happen to want out Chief Science Officer, my friend, to be in as good a health as is possible for him now, not at all.” Carson replied, sarcastic remarks slipping through his internal filter the more he talked to Rodney. As he talked to Rodney, Carson helped him stand up and walked with him over to a small side room which housed the x-ray machine.
Now that they were alone, Rodney relaxed a little and let Carson manhandle him, always so gentle even when I’ve annoyed the shit out of him, into the correct positions to take the x-rays of his hand and wrist. The conversation lost its sarcastic and bitter edge, as much as Rodney was able to talk without sarcasm coming into it, and after Carson tried to turn to personal chatter and Rodney clamped down like a clam, the conversation turned to updating each other on their work.
“Elizabeth hasn’t heard from him either way, Carson. We need Major Sheppard with us when we go to Atlantis. The way that man handles Ancient tech alone is amazing in its own right, but the way he … intuits what it was for or what’s wrong with it is, well, orgasmic to put it bluntly.”
“Aye, he’s far better at it than I am, that’s for sure. Do you think he will join the expedition?”
“I really hope he does. Maybe we can get O’Neill to get him assigned to the SGC so then he can just be ordered to go with us.”
“You’re forgetting that the expedition is volunteers only, even for the military.”
“Genius here, remember? Of course I know it’s volunteers only, but surely if he was re-assigned to the SGC and saw what was going on, read the reports, he’d volunteer in time. It’s part of that whole ‘serve and protect’ mentality that the military have.”
“I thought that ‘serve and protect’ was a police motto, not a military one? But I see where you’re coming from, and I don’t think you’re too far off the mark where the Major’s concerned. Just don’t be disappointed if he doesn’t join us.” At that, Carson came out from the shielded section of the room that he’d been in whilst the x-rays were being taken and held his hand out for Rodney to take if needed as he clambered out of the chair that he’d been in.
“Yes, yes,” Rodney said, waving his good hand at Carson as they left the x-ray room for the main infirmary. “I just wish the Major would make up his damned mind and tell us his decision so that we know. I hate waiting for information that important.”
Rodney had gotten back to the bed that he’d been sitting on earlier and struggled back up on to it, letting Carson hover in the background in case he needed the kind Doctor’s help, but waved him off when Carson offered him a hand up.
“It’ll take a bit for the x-rays to come back, so as we’re not in need of that bed for the moment, rest. I’ll get you when the results are through.”
Rodney was just about to reply when a nurse appeared at Carson’s side.
“Doctor Beckett, there’s a call come through for you from McMurdo. The Doctor sounds mighty urgent. I’ve put him through to the phone in your office.” She said quickly.
“Thank you Eva, I’ll be right there.”
With that Eva the nurse hurried back to whatever the phone call had taken her from.
Rodney had just started to drift off to sleep, against his better judgement, when Carson came back from the phone call a little flustered.
“It looks like you’ll get your chance to persuade Major Sheppard into joining the mission very soon, Rodney.”
“What? How?” Carson cut in before Rodney could splutter any more.
“My chat with the McMurdo Doctor led to Major Sheppard being put on the next run over here. He’ll be on base and in my infirmary by eleven AM.” Carson wrote something on the chart at the end of Rodney’s bed. Before Rodney could do more than look shocked and open his mouth to speak, Carson continued.
“No Rodney, don’t ask me for details. We’re friends, but Doctor – Patient confidentiality is not something that I’ll break for anyone, not even you.”
Rodney’s mouth snapped shut and his face set in to an expression of pure mulish stubbornness.
“In that case, the least you can do is let me know when he gets here.”
“Aye Rodney, I’ll radio you when the Major’s here and I’ve finished with him.”
“But! Hmph, fine.” Rodney said as he pulled the blanket up awkwardly from his hips to his shoulders with just one hand.
“Well if you’re not going to tell me anything that we don’t already know about my hand, I’ll be in my quarters, resting, as you said I should, so go away and do your Witch Doctor things. I don’t know how you expect me to sleep on such an uncomfortable bed; the best I can hope for is a short nap and only some of my back to be out of alignment when I wake up.” As Rodney spoke, he levered himself off of the bed and strode out of the infirmary, head high and pointedly not looking back when Carson wished him a good night’s sleep. Rodney did, however, give an almighty snort at the idea of a good night’s sleep occurring on a military funded research base.