Author : flubber2kool
Spoilers - Various Season 5 episodes
Characters - Richard Woolsey, John Sheppard.
Summary - Richard Woolsey finds out that sometimes life won't let you play by the rules and that breaking rules sometimes brings its own rewards.
This story is being written for the show_goes_onwith the prompt Sheppard/Woolsey you can't always live/play by the rules.
A/N I would like to thank my beta phenix_00 She is a great person and really helps make my stories better
I have no rights over and of the SGA characters or settings and this is just being written for fun.
When he had agreed to take the job in the Pegasus galaxy it had all seemed so easy. After all when he had been on Earth at the SGC it had always been a case of black and white. The rules had been there for a reason and his job had been to make sure they were followed. It had been a case of going in as a suit wearing bureaucrat, saying what the IOA wanted and why and then leaving it to someone else to deal with. At the end of the day he was able to go back to where he was staying, leaving it all behind him when the day was over.
Before he took the job he had looked over the personnel files. The one that stood out the most was that of one Lieutenant John Sheppard. In his opinion this was a man that could be seen as nothing but a loose canon. It seemed that he had broken the rules again and again. There seemed to be a flagrant disregard for the chain of command and Richard wondered how it was that a man such as this was still in the military, let alone in command of the military on an expedition of the kind that had gone to Atlantis. It was his suspicion that this had had more to do with the wants of Dr Weir than the good of the expedition.
Then he found himself in Atlantis. In the first three days of his Command, he had managed to break at least half a dozen basic security protocols for someone who may have been dead. This didn’t sit well with him at all, even when John, Colonel Sheppard had pointed out they had managed to save Dr Keller. He had needed to abide by the rules because that was what he was used to. But as time went on he began to understand that sometimes life didn’t allow you to play by the rules. You had two choices. You either played by the rules every time and suffered the consequences. Or you took a chance when the situation required it and hoped that things would work out.
Somehow, despite his initial fears, Atlantis had managed to get under his skin. This was brought home to him when Miss Xiaoyi had been sent by the IOA to effectively remove him from command. Of course this was disguised in the form of a promotion to an earth bound position. Fortunately, due to an interesting intervention, he had managed to survive Miss Xiaoyi attentions and had been appointed as permanent commander of Atlantis and he liked that. He liked that a lot.
As far as Colonel Sheppard was concerned, he had come to know that what some may see as blatant rule breaking could be seen as being loyal to his friends and the expedition. He was willing to go the extra mile, to do what needed to be done and to hell with the consequences. Richard couldn’t forget that he had been the one to reach out to him after what had happened to Jennifer and he had been grateful for that. As the months had gone on John had started to come to him for chats. At first they had been about what had happened in Atlantis during the day or what had happened on particular missions. Then their chats became more personal. Names went from Mr Woolsey to Richard and from Colonel to John. Conversations were shared over a glass of wine for Richard and a can of beer for John. Slowly but surely the walls were being broken and Richard began to realize that he was developing a close friendship with the man. It felt good as this was something that didn’t happen that often.
Then one day he realized just what John meant to him. It happened at the time when the AI from the Sakari device appeared to him. She had said that she had looked in to his mind and appeared to him as his ideal woman. It occurred to him after the device had gone that he had a view of what his ideal man was. That view came in the shape of John. No matter how he tried to look at it, John had got in to his heart in a way that no one, not even his ex-wife, had managed to do. He was also making him face a side of himself that he hadn’t been sure really existed until now. This also came after their meeting with *the* Sakari AI. Richard had enjoyed his time with John and his team but he had the feeling that John had been more affected by the experience than he was letting on.
As the others had drifted away Richard looked at John and asked him if he wanted to join him for a chat. As John looked at him, Richard could see the discomfort in his eyes.
“John, you know that you can talk to me if you want to.”
John met this offer with a smile. He seemed to relax a bit as he answered. “Ok. I guess that would be good.”
That was how he had found himself, half an hour later, in his quarters listening to John tell him the story of his encounter with the AI.
“Of all the things that damned thing had to latch on to it was Kolya. It said that I tortured myself everyday. Damn it I .....”
Richard moved over to where John was sitting. “I have looked at your records. At first I saw a man who disobeyed rules. A person who had no respect for the chain of command. Since I have got to know you, I have discovered a man who is loyal and will fight for his friends and colleagues, even when there seems to be no hope.”
John looked unconvinced as he continued, “ Yes. People have been lost under your command. But do you think that this would have been different for anyone else. I for one wouldn’t want anyone else in command.”
With that Richard made a choice that would break yet more rules but right now he didn’t really care. Sitting in front of him was someone who he cared a lot about and that person was in pain. Reaching out to him he lay his hand on John’s shoulder and placed a gently kiss on his forehead. John looked up in surprise but made no attempt to push him away. Instead he lifted his head and looked for Richard’s lips. After finding them, he returned the kiss. It’s gentleness hid the passion that was in his eyes.
As they broke the kiss John smiled at Richard and said, “Gee I never see it coming.” Richard looked a little worried, “But don’t worry. Not complaining about it tho.”
Richard relaxed at this. Suddenly John stood up and took Richard’s hand. Lifting Richard from his seat John wrapped his arms around his waist and laid his head on his shoulder. After a moment John's body began to shake. Richard realised that John was crying.
Richard pulled him close and let John cry. As he did Richard placed a hand on the back of John's head and gave him a gentle kiss. In that one moment Richard knew that he had crossed the line and he knew that he couldn't go back. But the strange thing was he didn't want to.
Later that night he found himself lying in bed with a contented looking John Sheppard lying beside him. When he took on the job of commander of the expedition this was the last thing he had been expecting. But it felt so right. Having just lost himself in the act of giving himself to John as they made love. This was what he had always wanted, needed. Having someone to love him. He was just amazed that it had happened like this, with this man.
After that night, the two men exchanged glances and stole time together whenever they could. It wasn't easy but somehow they managed.
How much John meant to Richard was brought home to him when John was sent to earth to help defend it against the Wraith ship. As the ship fell out of hyperspace his heart sank. They had to get there. They had to make it in time to save everyone, to save John.
Richard had to admit that he had a great sense of pride when Atlantis took on the hive ship. He was later to find out that this had given John and the rest of his team a chance to get clear of the hive ship before it blew up. This was especially pleasing to Richard as he had had the courage of his own convictions to use the wormhole drive that Zelenka had offered him.
Now after it was all over, after they had all been debriefed and talked to time and again by everyone from Colonel Carter through to the IOA the two men had managed to slip away. Richard had never been in a jumper so John and he decided to disappear and take a cloaked jumper in to space. As Richard looked down on the view of earth, he realised just how far he had travelled and how many rules he had broken to find out the things that meant the most to him.
One was the planet that lay beneath him. One was the city of Atlantis that was also down there on the planet beneath him. And finally, the man who had shown him what it meant to love and be loved. Colonel John Sheppard.
With that thought in mind he turned and kissed John and with a glint in his eye he gave him a smile and together they joined the mile high club Atlantis style.