Pairing: Rodney McKay/Carson Beckett
Fandom: Stargate: Atlantis
Theme: #24: good night
Disclaimer: This is not my sandbox. If it were, however...that would be one sexed-up sandbox.
Notes: Mild spoilers for "Allies". Beta'd by my spellchecker.
Rodney still woke up with nightmares sometimes. Cold sweat, erratic pulse, the whole nine yards. He'd work on something for a few hours, then go back to sleep.
After they dug him out of the side of the Hive ship, however, there was no calming him. He'd wake up and stay that way, subconsciously terrified of finding himself back in that cocoon of cold steel, a potential meal for a Wraith. Everyone noticed: he was more snappish than usual (and that was certainly saying something), the circles under his eyes growing with each passing day. Carson prescribed some sleeping pills, some of the strongest stuff he had, but Rodney still looked like a zombie.
Something had to be done. When Rodney came into the infirmary for his pills, Carson pointed him towards the back room, where a spare bed had been set up. "I want you to sleep here until these nightmares pass," the doctor said firmly. Rodney scowled at him and opened his mouth to argue, but Carson cut him off. "Not a word. You're not sleeping, even with the pills. Perhaps if someone's there when you wake, you'll calm down enough to go back to sleep."
"You're hospitalizing me for some bad dreams?" Rodney demanded. "What, are you going to chase the boogeyman off for me?"
"Yes," Carson said firmly. "That's exactly what I'm going to do. Now into the bed with you."
"When are you going to sleep?"
"Right now, in the infirmary." Carson's face softened. "I'm worried about you, Rodney, and I'm trying to help. Let me."
"I don't need a nursemaid," Rodney snapped.
"I'm not your nursemaid," Carson assured him. "I'm your friend."
Fresh out of argument, Rodney grumbled his way into the bed and promptly turned his back on Carson.
It was three fifty-four in the morning when Rodney woke, crying out in a harsh voice, over and over, swinging his arms in front of him. Carson all but leapt the distance between their beds and grabbed Rodney's flailing wrists, repeating his name over and over.
"Rodney. Rodney, I need you to wake up. Rodney!" The blue eyes that turned on him were confused, but quickly slid into focus as Rodney slumped in Carson's arms. "Rodney? Are you alright?"
"Stupid question," he replied.
"You're fine, then." Carson shrugged Rodney into an upright position, rubbing his back in soothing circles. "Was it a bad one?"
"Do you want to talk about it?"
"I didn't think so." Carson hesitated, then pressed a brief kiss to Rodney's temple. Rodney, after the act registered in his mind, gave his friend an odd look.
"I thought you weren't my nursemaid."
"I'm not," the doctor whispered. Rodney nodded.
"No. You're not." He shrugged and rolled over, leaving Carson in a very cold place.