blue flamingos

Coming Home

Fandom: Stargate Atlantis/Stargate SG1

Category/Rated: Slash, PG

Year/Length: 2009/~780 words

Pairing: John Sheppard/Cam Mitchell

Spoilers: pre-series

Disclaimer: No, I don't own them, for which I should think they're profoundly grateful.

Prompt: Engine grease

Series: Follows on from this ficlet, and First Kiss

Author's Notes: For HAPPYFEST III.

Feedback: Yes please. Even if it's bad. Especially if it's bad.


"Hey," Cam said from somewhere behind John.

John stood up, felt Cam's hand brush the back of his head before he could hit it on the open hood of his car, and turned around. Cam was out of uniform, leaning one hip against the car, looking at John with worried eyes.

"Hey," John said, wiping the engine grease from his hands. "I was going to come by."

"I know." Cam touched John's elbow lightly, and even though they were in the shadows of the garage, John couldn't stop his instinctive glance at the street. "Figured I'd save you the walk."

Since Cam lived on the next street over on the base, and John had been back for two days already, he figured that was probably Cam-speak for I'm worried about you, in case the eyes hadn't been enough of a clue. "You want a beer?" he asked.

"I'm good." Cam gestured to the open engine. "What's up?"

John shrugged. "Oil needed changing, decided to check a few other things while I was here." There was a message from his brother on his answering machine, waiting for him to return it, except he didn't know what to say. Dave didn't even sound angry on the message, which John could have dealt with, just tired and sad, starting with accusing John of cutting and running from Mom's funeral like he did everything else and ending with promising to have the lawyers call John about his share of Mom's will.

"You need a hand?" Cam asked.

"No, thanks." John hesitated, then said, "Hang out, if you want. I'll get pizza later."

Cam smiled, soft. "I can cook. Assuming you've got anything to eat in your kitchen."

"Probably. Might need to get creative though."

"Creative, I can do," Cam said as John ducked back under the hood. "Did you hear, Woods made major while you were away."

"Yeah?" John asked. "He start making you call him sir yet?"

"Only about a dozen times off-duty," Cam said dryly. "Don't think it's sunk in yet – Major Jakes is getting a disturbing amount of amusement out of him still calling her ma'am."

John smiled, even though Cam couldn't see him do it, and Cam went on, "And Kerrigan got arrested on leave, drunk and disorderly, again, so the colonel's put him on restricted duty for a week to see if it takes. Woods had a pot going on whether it's all about a girl or not, until he decided it was unethical now he's our superior officer."

John blinked and everything blurred. When he rubbed the back of his hand across his eyes, it came away wet, and Cam, close and gentle, said, "Hey."

"I'm fine," John said, but he stood up anyway, couldn't remember what he'd been doing.

"You've got oil, right here." Cam touched under John's eye, and John blinked again. Cam didn't say anything.

John wondered what Cam would say if John told him that, underneath everything, there was a part of him that was glad he didn't have to go home any more, didn't have to see his father and his brother now. Mom had always been proud of him for following her footsteps into the air force, even though she'd been long out when he went in. He figured she'd understand that he was glad to be back at work, happy to be with the people who'd felt more like his family than his blood family did, even before Mom died.

Cam still looked worried, but he smiled when John did, then picked up John's grease stained rag and wiped under his eye. "Come on, let's go see if you really do have anything for dinner, or if we need to make a run to the store."

And he had Cam, who'd met his mom, briefly, before he and Cam had started sleeping together, and who treated their thing with a ridiculous amount of domesticity, considering they were conducting an illegal and secret affair on an air force base.

"I have food," John said, dropping the hood closed again.

"Popcorn and stale bread doesn't count."

"You're the one who wants to cook."

"True," Cam conceded. He stopped just inside John's apartment and turned to look at him. "I'm not really sure this is the right time to ask, but – don't cancel your leave over Thanksgiving. Come home with me."

Cam talked about his family all the time, but John had never met any of them. He thought maybe it would be nice to be surrounded by people and kids and noise, another kind of family.

"Okay," he said, and felt Cam's warm smile, all the way down inside of himself.

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