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Tenses

By:
For:
Fandom:
Stargate: Atlantis

Pairing:
Joe/David

Rating:
R

Notes:
A combination of prompt 1 and 2, which was more than a little fun to write!

Summary:
A relationship in tenses

 
One

Before they started shooting, the studio heads decided to throw a “welcome back (bitches)” party, and all in all, everything was going over well. Music blasted through the sound system that had been hastily set up and some hair band from the 80’s was pumped onto the dance floor. The entire cast seemed to be enjoying themselves, catching up over beer and more than slightly suggestive dancing.

Torri was sprawled in a booth between Jason and Paulie, listing to the side ever so slightly, beer slipping from between loose fingers as she rambled on about something involving Ewan McGregor, a kilt, and a broomstick. Joe finds himself looking to the dance floor, and that’s where he finds David, in the middle of a crowd of people, crooked mouth open as he laughs uproariously at a joke someone just cracked. It looked like a night club the way things were set up and he had the perfect vantage point to see it all. But ever aware, David felt the eyes locked on his back. Turning around, he grinned cheekily at Joe, waving a hand widely, gesturing him towards the dance floor. Refusing to acknowledge Joe’s rapidly shaking head, David shifted his attention back to Rachel who was rocking in time to one of the many updated songs dotting the play list that night.

“You like him” Rachel laughed poking him in the side.

“No I don’t!” he returns loudly “I’m just being…nice”

She continued prodding him, laughing loudly, her voice barely audible over the music.

“You have a crush on him! You’re a twelve year old girl, I knew it!”

“God, you’re just like my sister!” David slapped her hands away unsuccessfully.

Then, someone leaned against his shoulder and a cocky voice yelled above the music; “I leave you alone for not even an hour and look what happens.”

David grinned widely, eyes lighting up.

“Hello Joe!” his voice sounded high even to his own ears.

“David! Hey” he grinned cockily, fingers tapping against David’s neck in time to the music.

“It’s good to be back, isn’t it?”

“Hell yes.”

Rachel looked back and forth between the two men quickly, then slapped David on the arm;

“I’m going to go search out Jason and see if he wants to do some shots.” She winked at Joe “Be good boys.”

They watched as she left the dance floor, weaving in between the various cast and crew, grinning deviously.

“That was weird.”

David turned his head to the side, eyes cast down at Joe’s arm.

“Yes, weird.”

Joe blinked and sucked his breath in quickly before yanking his arm down.

“Sorry David.” He laughed awkwardly.

“Hey, don’t worry about it.”

An awkward non-silence fell between them.

“So, we’re standing…in the middle of a dance floor.” David looked up, his eyes teasing, “Wanna dance?”

Joe tilted his head to the side. “Are you serious?”

“Why not?” David gestures around the room “It’s not like we’d be the only two guys dancing together, and come on, it’s not like its going to mean anything.”

Joe’s face fell a little, but he covered it up with a plastered on grin.

“You’re right, let’s just dance and have a good time.”

With that Joe followed David further onto the floor, shoving any hope to the back of his mind, but a warm solidness rooted itself in David’s stomach and he felt good.

Two

Joe walks away from his trailer; the door shut and locked for the last time until hiatus ends. It’s empty and instead of being the warm refuge on too long days of shooting, it lies a hollowed shell. He walks to his car, dragging the last suitcase of his things behind him, the wheels catching on the uneven pavement. It’s so quiet with everyone gone, but the low lying buzz of activity remains on other parts of the lot. Sighing, he shoulders the backpack that had been dangling from his left hand and searches his pockets for the ratty key ring he knows is in there somewhere, letting out a strangled laugh as he locates them buried beneath some half used Kleenex. The door clicks open and Joe sticks his head in the car, checking to see that nothing is in the way, before he throws the bag into the back seat. Ducking back out, he’s startled to find David standing at his side, leaning against the trunk in a rapidly failing attempt at looking casual.

“Hey.”

Joe walks around David and pops the trunk open, shoving the suitcase in without a thought.

“Goodbye David.” He closes his eyes against the sun as he slams the trunk shut. Hearing something hit the side of the car, he turns around slowly to see David lifting his head up from the glass.

“We need to talk about this Joe.”

“Talk about what, David?”

“About this stupid dance that we seem to be stuck in,” his palms slap against the sun warmed roof.

“I didn’t think there was anything left to say.” Joe’s voice is tired.

He looks up and catches David’s eyes and sees the same bone tired exhaustion echoing there, but it is not the only thing. He sees everything he feels, all of the frustration and confusion and something that he doesn’t even want to think about, that he hasn’t even acknowledged feeling himself. And then there is nothing, startling blue going suddenly cold and shuttered. Joe closes his eyes once more, his back stiffening,

“What do you want from me?”

“I don’t know. Something. Anything.” He pauses, taking a breath. “I don’t want to hurt you Joe, and I’m sorry if I’ve been leading you on, but this whole thing is just so damn hard.” David’s shoulders slump dejectedly, and Joe desperately searches his mind for some way to make things better.

“Why is it that the simplest things are usually the hardest?”

The question hangs in the air, silence only interrupted by the sound of the occasional car driving past in the distance.

Then David is at his shoulder.

“Come home with me.” He hushes as if they were in a crowded room. “We can talk about this, make things better.” David’s voice takes on a desperate note. “Please Joe, I just want to make things better.”

Joe tries to wrap his head around the situation. There is no right or wrong choice, and whatever he decides he knows someone will end up hurt.

“I don’t know.” His voice is harsh and his heart feels like it’s about to burst out of his chest. “I don’t know what to do anymore David, and that scares me.”
David’s hand moves to his shoulder, a comforting weight.

“Then come home with me.”
He looks up into David’s eyes once more, and something clicks into place.

“Alright.” His voice is hardly more than a whisper, “I’ll go with you.”

Three

David knows what will happen when they get to his place. It’s been coming to a slow boil for 2 damn years, and now nothing can stop it. They’ll go into the house, and Joe will be almost meek, hanging back while he takes the front. He’ll try to break the tension with one of his jokes, and he knows just how bad they really are, so they’ll probably fall flat and silence will descend between them once more. He’ll close the door and lock it, kick his shoes off and gesture for Joe to do the same, but he won’t wait for him to do it cause god knows Joe can really drag his ass when he’s avoiding something.
While Joe is being, well Joe, he’ll wander into the kitchen and busy himself with making coffee, cleaning up the dishes from last night’s dinner, feeding the dog, shoving that dirty rag under the sink; anything to keep from thinking about how this could go so, so wrong. Then Joe will come into the kitchen all long limbs and undeniably sexy, eyes anywhere but where he’s standing by the percolator.

“So, want a coffee?” he’ll ask, twisting a dish cloth between his hands and Joe will shake his head and move to sit on the stool across from him.

“Okay, then, want something to eat?”

“David, you can stop stalling.” Joe will look up, his eyes clear and beautiful in the early evening light. “Talk to me David Hewlett, tell me what you want.” And the confidence that seemed to have abandoned him earlier will return full force.

He’ll put his hands on the counter top, fingers drumming slowly. “What do you want me to say Joe?”

“I want you to cut through all of the crap and be totally honest with me. No more smoke and mirrors, no more dancing around like a bunch of goddamn idiots, just you and me- right here, right now.”

And to Joe’s surprise, he will round the counter, eyes dark and determined. He’ll pin the other man to the adjoining wall.

“You want me to be honest Joe?” He’ll press closer, arms coming to rest on either side of Joe. “Do you want to hear how long I’ve wanted you? Or how much I want to fuck you, cause I really do, but I think you can tell that.” And he’ll thrust his hips forward, cock hardening in his pants.

“How about this?” he’ll pant, mouth scant inches from the delicate shell of Joe’s ear

“This isn’t some one off thing for me Joe Flanigan, I’ve wanted you for so long and Jesus Christ, now that I have you….” His voice will crack and he’ll find himself burying his face in Joe’s neck. “Please let me have you.”

Joe will go stiff, not know exactly what to do, but then his arms will come up and wrap around David’s back, stroking slow lines down his back.

“Someone is going to end up hurt David, we both know it.” Joe’s voice will be gentle, calming. “Someone will end up broken and we both might lose everything. Are you willing to risk your entire life for something that could end at any moment?” And he’ll blink, ridiculously long lashes brushing against the side of Joe’s neck.

He’ll take a deep breath and step away from Joe, steeling himself against something invisible, yet as terrifying as anything he could ever imagine, even Sheppard’s clowns.

“Do you want the truth?” His head will tilt to the side and Joe will nod slowly.

“I’d be willing to risk anything.” And Joe will look into his eyes and see only blunt determination, a Hewlett trait as well proved by his meeting with Kate over the years that they’ve known each other.

“Then I don’t think I have a choice, now do I?”

His eyes will light up and Joe will lunge forward and capture his mouth in a searing kiss and everything will be perfect. But for now he’ll sit in the passenger seat of Joe’s car, watching as the trees pass by in a blur of green and brown, content in the knowledge that they’re headed in the right direction and that for once, everything will work out.

 Comments

 Left By:
Guest (Marge)

At:
2006-12-29 23:07:19

 
That's very clever and well written...If I ever see them dancing together at a con I will of course be staring inocently at the ceiling *cough cough*


 Left By:
Guest (raven)

At:
2006-12-30 00:54:06

 
This is lovely. I love the absented-minded touching in the first scene. The second scene is almost a tragic good-bye and I can feel that. And, the third scene... so much hope. Quite the emotional ride for such a short piece.


 Left By:
At:
2006-12-30 05:24:33

 
Oh, what a fantastic piece -- layered and full of feeling, with such lovely and vivid cameos from the rest of the cast. And yet, there's such a palpable sense of longing and confusion about Joe and David: We get their awkward shuffle back and forth, ache for them and with them. The last scene, then, takes all of that and gives it a different, more optimistic spin because yes, they can still make it. Together. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS. I love it!


 Left By:
Guest (velocitygrass)

At:
2007-01-06 08:26:35

 
Very nice. Rachel watching them and just knowing. And David's fantasy in the end, willing to risk anything. Thank you!


 Left By:
Guest (Tarlan)

At:
2007-08-05 09:21:47

 
Such an emotional ride for our boys!