Little Red (mylittleredgirl) wrote,
Little Red



Let it be so noted that this journal from now until FOREVARRRR is dedicated to anr, who is awesome awesome awesome! :) All fic from now on is dedicated to her. Even in fandoms she does not care about. YES. She is that awesome. *smooches*

Also omg you should SHARE in my birthday gleee because miera_c wrote babyfic! and spockette has {friendslocked) pikshurs of her sister's puppy and fiyero the hamstah and omg the cute!

And I have been writing birthday fic for everyone else (astrum_presul, driftingatdusk, phrenitis, ETC) with a birthday this month, but totally failed to get it done until today! So here, it is birthday fic for everyone on, um, my birthday:

Title: "Seventh"
Author: Little Red, with a side order of A.j.
Rating: PG-13
Category: Atlantis, Sheppard/Weir
Summary: Remembering her birthday.
Spoilers: "Hot Zone," "Before I Sleep," "The Long Goodbye."


The first time Elizabeth has a birthday on Atlantis, he gives her a clay pot. The birthday part is actually just coincidence -- he's been looking for some way to atone for recently disobeying her orders that isn't, well, an actual apology (because an apology would mean he was wrong, which he wasn't, and a clay pot is just a birthday present). Things get kind of weird from there, and Elizabeth inters her own ashes in it (it's a complicated story, as most of them are these days). The clay pot on her desk is probably now more of a reminder of how utterly screwed-up her life has become, rather than a subliminal message that John Sheppard is actually a good guy, so there's probably no need to yell at him.

Two days later, though, she asks him to join her for lunch and they don't even talk about business.

"That was pretty weird the other day, huh?" he asks, the closest he can get to broaching the subject. He usually sidesteps other people's emotions like they're live land mines, but for some reason, he feels the need to talk about the other Elizabeth, too.

Elizabeth shivers, only visible because he's paying close attention. "Strangest birthday I've ever had, that's for sure."

"You probably win the world record." He pauses. Shrugs. "I didn't tell anyone else, you know. Just her."

Elizabeth rolls her eyes. "My birthday's not actually a state secret, but I appreciate the gesture."

Actually, he sort of likes it as a secret. "You'd rather deal with time travel and ten thousand year old doppelgangers than a party in the control tower?"

"Don't even think about it, John."

He lords it over her with a smirk. She glares.

Things got a little strange, but she does seem to forgive him, and that was really the idea.


On Elizabeth's second birthday on Atlantis, he tries to kill her.

In all fairness, they're both completely possessed by aliens, and she's trying to kill him even more.

He feels all kinds of things after that little escapade is over -- exhausted, primarily, but also guilty and angry and panicked and grateful that neither of them actually succeeded.

On the up-side, it gives him an extra few days to figure out what to give her. They picked up some neat gemstones from an alien bazaar and he pocketed one of them with her birthday in mind, but the rest of the gems have been analyzed and re-analyzed by the geologists and Elizabeth has seen them a hundred times.

He takes his to the Athosians, who set it in stretched, braided leather and turn it into a bracelet.

"Is this for Doctor Weir?" asks Jivaya, the Athosian tanner, as she finishes up the last few knots.

John reflexively looks over at Teyla, wondering with a little annoyance what Teyla has been saying to her people about him.

"Yes," he acknowledges. Then, because this time it seems more damning to admit that he's giving her jewelry as a birthday gift, he adds, "It's an apology."

After all, he did try to kill her.


Perhaps in order to work out some sort of Doctor Weir Birthday Karma, the next year he saves her life.

Elizabeth is kidnapped during a routine negotiation, opening trade on an alien world. John had plans of celebrating a fruitful day of negotiating with a bottle of berry wine he squirreled away and Hostess cupcakes with real birthday candles that he had Caldwell import from the 7-11 near the SGC, but instead, she's being held by guerilla insurgents, Teyla and McKay are busy yelling at the alien government for not warning them, and he and Ronon are trekking through the jungle to find her.

Usually, John has a hard time keeping up with Ronon, but this time he matches him mile for mile, extra adrenaline coming from just exactly how pissed off he is.

By the time they catch up to the kidnappers, she's already inside a fortified encampment, and it will take a backup team the better part of the day to get to them. They're outmanned and outgunned, but Ronon never says no to a good two-on-eighteen firefight, and once John hears her scream from inside the compound, it's all over.

He takes one in the shoulder getting to her, but they do get to her. She's bound hand and foot and bleeding from an interrogation, but the first thing she says is, "It's okay, it's okay," possibly afraid that John and Ronon will nuke the entire planet in retaliation.

Later, in the infirmary, where she's been stitched and bandaged for her cuts and bruises and he's recovering groggily from shoulder surgery, she says, "They would have killed me. I didn't have the information they wanted."

She's thanking him for getting to her, but he's going to beat himself up for months over letting her be taken in the first place. Not getting to her sooner.

She knows him that well, so she sits on the chair next to his bed and says, "These will heal, John."

"On your next birthday," he informs her, "You're not getting out of bed."


Elizabeth forgets his demand by the following year, but he doesn't (his shoulder still bugs him a little, always aggravated by the kickback of his P-90).

They're in the middle of about eight different projects, and he knows there's no chance she'll actually stay out of her office for any length of time.

But she needs a break, and he needs a mission that isn't life-or-death, so he sets himself the task of bringing her breakfast in bed.

He's not a cook by any stretch of the imagination, but he's been guarding the last toaster-waffles from Earth for almost a month, and he decorates them with wild mainland berries. The orange juice is from dehydrated powder -- easier for trans-galactic shipping -- but it's the best he can do.

Six people see him in the hallway as he's bringing breakfast and a small glass of wildflowers to Elizabeth's quarters, and not one of them bats an eye.

She's up when he gets there, studying a report. "Back in bed," he demands. "We have a deal."

Elizabeth looks endlessly amused. "Are you going to bring me lunch, too?"

"If you manage to get through today without any major disasters, I'll bring you lunch all week."

She holds up the report. "How about minor disasters? There are water pipes leaking all over the North pier."

"Zelenka can handle it."

She shakes her head. "I can't believe you made me breakfast."

He doesn't mention that no one else in the city, apparently, has any trouble believing it. "Happy birthday."

She kisses him, just a peck on the corner of his lips, typical gratitude-between-friends (that's not so typical for anyone except them). "Thank you."

She doesn't stay in bed, but there are no major disasters.

He brings her lunch for the rest of the week.


The fifth year, he forgets.

In his defense, there's a really big fire. The puddle-jumpers are all doing double-duty dropping tons of water over the mainland plains and evacuating the Athosians to the city in case their fire-fighting efforts are unsuccessful. After all the ancient retroviruses, marauding spaceships and the routine appearance of life-sucking aliens, John honestly didn't expect to lose two weeks to something as Earth-y as putting out forest fires. California has forest fires. Other planets should suffer widespread destruction from more interesting sources.

He also wouldn't have expected it to be so exhausting. When the fire is finally out (again, for real this time, hopefully), he falls asleep against the wall of his shower for almost an hour and still smells like smoke.

When he emerges, somewhat rested and considerably cleaner, Elizabeth is waiting in his quarters.

His first thought -- after confirming that he is wearing a towel -- is that he's still asleep.

His second guess is that he probably forgot to turn in a very important report.

"Um. Hi."

She smiles. "I got tired of waiting in the hall." She's leaning against his dresser, and indicates the tray next to her. "It's the last of the mac and cheese. And hot dogs -- but don't ask what's in them."

He stares. When she turns up in his dreams, she's normally not bringing him mac and cheese.

He can't smell much of anything over the smoke in his nose, but her dinner menu sounds really, really good -- possibly better than anything he's eaten in years. After two weeks of subsisting mostly on powerbars, he's too hungry to be dreaming.

It finally occurs to him to ask, "What's the occasion?"

"My birthday," Elizabeth answers. "Last Saturday."

"Last Saturday?" He can't believe he forgot. He can, because he's been on 24-hour fire watch, but he still feels guilty. This is something they do, this birthday thing, and it completely slipped his mind.

Elizabeth waves a hand. "You have been busy."

He doesn't have a table in his quarters, so they set up a picnic on top of his bedspread. It still feels surreal, but in that good way, when he knows he's not dreaming but he so easily could be.

"Try it," she urges, sitting cross-legged and watching him intently over her own bowl of mac and cheese.

It's quite possibly the best thing he's ever tasted. He doesn't even need to say so out loud, because she beams at the expression on his face.

He loves that look on her -- unguarded happiness. She doesn't have that nearly often enough.

"Did you know," Elizabeth says, nodding her head toward the poster above his bed, "that Johnny Cash is the only person in history to be sued by the government for starting a forest fire?"

It's at that moment that John Sheppard falls a little bit in love with her.


For Elizabeth's sixth birthday since coming to Atlantis, John has grand plans of locking themselves in one of their quarters, turning off the intercom and doing things with her that would be completely unspeakable in polite company.

He's had that fantasy for just about every day over the past few months, of course, and it's never actually happened, so the fact that it's her birthday isn't the real obstacle. They have their careers to consider, the city, the responsibility, and how he's never actually come out and said anything along the lines of um, hi, I like you, and I think weshoulddateinawaythatinvolvessex.

As it turns out, they aren't even on Atlantis when her birthday rolls around. It's rare that both of them go back to Earth at once. Usually, it's considered unsafe to leave the city with makeshift leadership for that long, but in this instance, the expedition is more in danger from the home front than it is from the Wraith, the Gen'ii coalition, or anybody else in the Pegasus galaxy.

They're in closed sessions all day with the IOA, with Homeworld Security, with the President (Elizabeth seems completely unaffected by meeting with the President of the United States, but John still has a hard time not snapping to attention every time the President looked his way). It's almost 11:00 by the time they're back in their hotels, and 11:30 before he shows up at her door with a selection of ice cream from the hotel boutique.

She doesn't even notice the ice cream when she invites him in, only motions to be quiet while she talks to someone over the phone. From the pieces of the conversation he hears, it sounds like she's talking to General Landry and like her polite diplomatic voice is wearing thin.

"We'll mention that, for all the good it'll do," she finally says. "Thank you, sir. I'll be in touch in the morning." She presses the end button on her cell phone a little too aggressively.

"So..." he starts. "Getting reamed by the IOA wasn't anywhere on your birthday wish list, I take it?"

Elizabeth pauses. Looks surprised.

"Don't tell me you forgot."

She rubs a hang over her face. "I remembered this morning. But that seems like a long time ago. God, I'm exhausted."

He wants to rub her shoulders. He does that now, sometimes, when they're camped out in one of the city lounges working on reports, but it would probably seem too forward when alone in a hotel room. Plus, they're on Earth, where it feels like they're constantly being watched -- he doesn't think for a second that the government would actually be tapping their hotel rooms, but after having every decision he's ever made be analyzed to death for the past week, he's feeling a little paranoid.

He holds out his plastic grocery bag of goodies. "Not too tired for ice cream, I hope."

She shakes her head, but he can see a smile brewing. "It's almost midnight."

"Which, technically, is only 1400 on Atlantis." He shakes the bag for her to take. "You deserve it."

She rolls her eyes and takes the bag. "Chocolate does sound pretty good right now."

"I even remembered plastic spoons."

She laughs, because it's a box of four hundred plastic spoons -- the only thing he could find -- and the urge to rub her shoulders and hug her (he does that sometimes, too, but usually only after something terrible has happened) hasn't gone away.

"General Morgan's pretty upset about the Lothari incident," she says. "He says our accounts provide insufficient rationale for pulling out of the Alpha Site."

John shakes his head. "No talking about work, and no talking about General Morgan. It's your birthday for the next... 23 minutes, and you're going to enjoy it."

She looks like she's about to argue, but he raises his eyebrows, and she gives in without his having to say another word.

"You still surprise me sometimes, John," she says, indicating the ice cream. "And the way you stood up to General Casey today-"

"No work," he reminds her, but not before his cheeks start to feel warm. Not from the argument with the General -- he's had his share of disagreements with the military brass over the years -- but from the proud way Elizabeth watched him the whole time he was speaking.

She touches his hand, cool from holding the ice cream container. "I'm glad you're here, John."

"I couldn't let you face those IOA goons alone."

She smirks. "Now who's talking about work?"

Still holding on to her hand, he leans in and kisses her.

She doesn't push him away.

"Happy birthday, Elizabeth," he murmurs when they pull apart naturally. She has moved one hand to his shoulder and his arms are around her waist, like this is the most natural thing in the world.

She rests her head on his shoulder. Her breath tickles his neck.

She whispers, like she's telling him a secret: "That was on my list."


By the seventh birthday, everyone knows.

They all know it's Elizabeth's birthday -- Stephen Caldwell leaked it over the email server -- so there's a big party planned on one of the longer piers.

They also all know -- by rumor, if nothing else -- that John is pretty much stupid in love with her, and that Elizabeth likes him well enough in return. She's better at hiding it than he is, but then, he isn't really trying.

He gets to have sex with Elizabeth Weir.

Elizabeth. Weir.

He doesn't think he'd even be able to hide it if he was trying, actually, so it's a good thing that she doesn't really mind.

They aren't together-together -- that would cause too many problems for everyone -- but they're together in their own sort of way that makes sense in their strange, space-dwelling lives. He thinks about more of a commitment -- whatever that would look like -- whenever a passing alien dignitary starts sending her ceremonial courtship gifts (this happens twice a year, at least).

But the truth is, he's happy, even with the aliens honing in on her every now and then, because on the morning of her birthday, he wakes up naked in Elizabeth's bed.

He's a little disoriented with the light streaming in the window. He rarely stays the night -- somewhere along the line, they decided that it's better for him to be in his own quarters if the night shift comes looking for him. They both sleep better in their own beds, technically, but after a long mission, he'd gladly trade uninterrupted sleep for a few hours getting cuddled (and elbowed, sometimes) by Elizabeth.

"You didn't wake me," he calls. It sounds like Elizabeth's just getting out of the shower.

She strolls back into the bedroom wearing a towel and a smile. "I didn't have the heart," she answers. She sits down on the edge of the bed closest to him and brushes her fingers through his hair. "You need the sleep."

He tugs her down for a kiss. "I got you something for your birthday."

She tries to pull away. "Not that, I hope. I've got a meeting in ten minutes."

He pouts. "No. An actual present. And I don't want to give it to you at the party."

She rolls her eyes. She's gamely putting up with the party for team morale, but he knows that she's not looking forward to being the center of attention. "Okay, John. What's your present?"

He digs around the clothing on the floor until he finds his pants from yesterday, and then pulls out a thin necklace, silver and stone.

"You don't have to wear it," he says quickly. She only wore the bracelet he got her five years ago once on Atlantis, because someone made a comment about him giving her jewelry. She wore it again when they were back on Earth and he liked the way that felt, her wearing something he gave her, even though no one around them could possibly know that he had.

She runs the chain through her fingers, admiring the workmanship. "Did you get this from the trading post on Astraan?"

"Yeah. I tried to find something more subtle, but-"

"It's beautiful." She smiles. "Thank you." She works the clasp easily and puts it around her neck. It fits right above her collarbone like it was made just for her.

"You really don't have to wear it if you don't want to put up with... you know," he repeats, suddenly nervous.

"I can deal with a few comments, John." She kisses him. "You seem to get the worst of it, anyway."

"It's worth it," he says, without even thinking. And it is. McKay could make fun of him all day and he still wouldn't even think about giving this up.

Elizabeth slips one leg over his where he's sitting next to her on the bed, straddling him to give her better leverage for the kiss. Her towel rubs against his bare skin, and this time he's the one to push her away.

"I thought you had a meeting..."

She checks the time. "It can wait."

The rumors will only fly harder when they're both late to work, but that's something else he can deal with.

It's worth it.

And besides, it's her birthday.

Tags: fic, pairing: sparky, peeps: yay fellow humans!

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