blue flamingos

Home Ground

Fandom: Stargate Atlantis/Stargate SG1

Category/Rated: Slash, NC-17

Year/Length: 2007/ ~3812 words

Pairing: Lorne/Mitchell

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

Summary: It's not that he dislikes SG1, but life in Atlantis isn't exactly stable at the best of times, and their presence just disrupts things more.

Author's Notes: For [info]lorne_porn's Smutmas sex pollen challenge prompt of ice cold, fringe benefits.

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

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Four weeks after the message comes through the gate, saying, 'so, hey, turns out the Ori are defeatable after all. How about that?', Lorne gets copied into an email saying that SG1 will be dropping by on the Daedalus next time it's in orbit.

There's a lot of explanation about Ancient knowledge, and sharing tactics that might be of use for defeating the Wraith, but Lorne knows how to read what's written between the lines. Which basically boils down to Colonel Carter wanting to hear firsthand how her old team saved the world (again) and Dr Jackson wanting to play with an Ancient city now Merlin's depository has given him the gene.

"Last stop on the victory tour," Sheppard says dryly when he comes by Lorne's office early for the team leaders' meeting.

"Lucky us," Lorne agrees. It's not that he dislikes SG1 – they were nice enough when the Ancients kicked the expedition out of the city – but life in Atlantis isn't exactly stable at the best of times, and their presence just disrupts things more. The social scientists get all giddy about having Dr Jackson in their midst, and the Marines try to challenge Teal'c to physical contests (apparently under the mistaken belief that he'll be less wise to their tricks than Ronon), and Lorne always ends up being the one tracking Vala across the city to retrieve whatever she's appropriated.

And then there's Colonel Mitchell.

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Like most things in Pegasus, SG1's arrival in Atlantis goes pretty much the way they're expecting, the gate room suspiciously busy right before they're due to beam in, considering SG1 don't even rate an official welcome party. Carter looks mildly amused by the whole thing, though, so neither Lorne nor Sheppard bother telling people to leave. Even if it did happen in another galaxy, everyone's still riding high on their victory over the Ori, and a couple of days' disruption seem like a fair price for the morale boost.

They beam down along with six new scientists for McKay and a dozen new Marines with the gene, so Lorne barely catches more than a glimpse of them before the usual Daedalus-day rush begins. That doesn't stop him looking round for Mitchell above the heads of their Marines. When Lorne spots him, he looks just like he always does, relaxed and smiling, and looking at their city with appropriate appreciation.

"Major?" Sheppard says. When Lorne looks at him, he turns from looking in the same direction Lorne was and raises one eyebrow knowingly.

Lorne tells himself not to blush or start making excuses, and ends up telling the new Marines the wrong number for their residential corridor instead.

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"Well, I suppose it's one way for them to get to know the scientists," Cadman says that evening, grinning at him over the rim of her coffee mug. She's been back on Atlantis a couple of months since she got promoted, and Lorne's given up hoping that she'll stop finding his daily round of bizarre crises and unlikely rescues amusing.

"Yeah. I'm sure Dr Namcara loved having Sergeant Matthews walk in on her as she was getting out the shower," he says. Dr Namcara, it turns out, can scream pretty damn loud.

Cadman shrugs. "Should've locked the – oh, hi, sir." She half-stands, which ought to be a clue, but apparently Lorne's brain's taken a vacation, because he twists round, expecting to see Sheppard, and finds Mitchell instead, looking down at him with a grin, a mug in one hand.

"As you were, Captain," Mitchell says to Cadman, who slumps back into her seat. "Major."

"Colonel." Lorne nods back. He's used to being shorter than everyone around him, but he still wants to stand up, get something closer to eye level with Mitchell. "Something I can help you with?"

"I'm good," Mitchell says easily, still smiling. Lorne remembers that smile from their six weeks on Earth, when Mitchell used to round up him and Sheppard to go to a bar, or back to his place to watch a game; like Lorne needed more material even then to ramp up his dumb crush, watching Mitchell sprawling on the sofa and trash-talking Sheppard's team. "Wanted to ask if you'd opened up any new running paths since we were here."

"Colonel Sheppard and Ronon run the north east pier," Lorne offers. "Or you could ask the Marines." On the edge of his vision, Cadman's grinning into her coffee, and Lorne starts dreading hearing what's making her smile like that.

"I just helped save the galaxy," Mitchell says seriously – or as seriously as he can when he's obviously fighting a smile. "I'd like not to lose the kudos from that just yet."

"You mean you don't want to be humiliated when Ronon Dex and a squad of Marines outrun you," Cadman says, then adds sweetly, "Sir."

Mitchell shrugs. "Or that."

Lorne would take offence on behalf of the Air Force, if only because it's expected, but Cadman doesn't give him chance. "Major Lorne likes the west pier," she says. "Hardly anyone goes out there."

"Sounds good." Mitchell looks down at him. "Lorne? Feel like a tagalong tomorrow morning?"

The west pier, as Cadman says, is deserted most mornings, which is why Lorne goes out there when he's had enough of keeping up with the Marines. Pretty much the last thing he needs to be thinking about is being out there in the early morning with Mitchell hot and sweaty... And now he is, along with heartfelt thanks for his BDUs being kind of baggy.

"I'm on duty at 0530," he warns, but Mitchell just nods and says, "Your quarters, 0400?" and Lorne can't do anything but agree.

"Your ears are red," Cadman says when Mitchell's gone, eyes bright with her own brand of lunatic glee.

Lorne glares at her, not that it's ever done him any good, either at the SGC or on Atlantis. "I thought you were taking me out to be humiliated on behalf of the Air Force," he says mildly. "Had a better offer?"

She gives him a look that's very close to an eye-roll. "No. You have." Her eyes go hazy and unfocussed. "Of course, now I've got time to drop in on the lovely Dr Namcara," she says. "Check she's recovered from her trauma earlier."

Lorne ignores her – what he doesn't know she isn't joking about, he can't be called to testify against her regarding. "What better offer?" he asks, even though he's pretty sure he knows what she'll say.

"Colonel Mitchell," she says, and actually does roll her eyes. "Or did you really think he trekked across the city, past dozens of people, because he thought, ah, Major Lorne, he'll know the best place to go for a morning run."

"I –" Lorne starts, pretending she wasn't just trying – and failing – to imitate Mitchell's accent. He's heard rumors about Mitchell, but the SGC is worse than high school for rumors, something about too many secrets in one place. On the other hand, the law of averages says some of them have to be true and –

"Yeah, thought not," Cadman says triumphantly, and doesn't stop grinning even when he kicks her under the table.

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Mitchell takes a step back when the door onto the pier opens. "Christ, that's cold."

Lorne shrugs, glad he bothered with a sweatshirt. Their no-longer-really-new-but-still planet has harsh winters, and they're right in the middle of one, the air bitterly cold until the sun comes up. "There're plenty of routes inside the city," he offers.

Mitchell shakes his head, but something in his expression seems to fall, like maybe Lorne hasn't been imagining the sidelong glances Mitchell's been giving him for the last ten minutes. "Nah, let's go."

He waves for Lorne to go first, which he does, picking up the pace a bit, their footsteps ringing off the pier almost in time, their breath creating white clouds in the chill. The sky's just starting to lighten, everything tinged with slight gray, and it reminds Lorne, like it always does, that they're in an alien city in another galaxy, everything shrouded in mist, no-one there but the two of them.

He stops at the end of the pier like always, and turns to look back at the city. In the half-light of the morning, all the lines of the buildings are blurred out, and the hundreds of lights that they've never figured out how to turn off look like living things caught in the mist. It's still the most beautiful thing Lorne's ever seen.

"Wow," Mitchell says beside him. He's staring up at the city, wide eyed, mouth slight open, when Lorne turns to look at him, and Lorne thinks maybe he could rank up close to Atlantis in the list of beautiful things. Not that he'll ever say that.

He looks away before Mitchell can catch him staring, because it's one thing to think Mitchell might be looking at him, and another entirely to look back quite that openly. They must be further round the pier than he usually goes, because there's a small pool to his left that he's never noticed before, and something small and pink growing round it.

"What is it?" Mitchell asks, sounding further away than he was before. When Lorne looks up – well, he has to look up, for one, because he's crouching by the side of the pool, though he doesn't remember moving, and the pink-leaved plant is lying across the palm of his hand.

"I don't know," he says. He's come out with his sidearm – five years in Atlantis have taught everyone that you don't go out into the city unarmed. Even Mitchell showed up wearing a thigh holster over his sweatpants, which did approximately nothing for Lorne's vow to keep from thinking things he shouldn't be thinking around the guy – but no knife, and of course it's the thing he hasn't got that he needs. "I've never seen it before, I'm just going to take a sample to take back to the city."

"Right." Mitchell crouches next to him, his thigh brushing Lorne's for a moment before he shifts his weight. "Your botanist."

"Yeah." The stem of the plant looks tough, but it snaps easily in his hands, leaving him the end of one branch, the rest of it sliding back into the water. "Can you hold this for a second?"

Mitchell takes the stem carefully, holding it up close to his face. "Pretty," he says idly, then hands it back to Lorne, who wraps it in the handkerchief that's conveniently, if mysteriously, in his pocket, tucking the bundle carefully away.

"Ready to head back in?" he asks, and Mitchell shakes himself slightly, then blows on his hands.

"Absolutely. It's freezing out here."

The run back seems longer than the run out, even though Lorne feels like they're going faster. It's the only explanation for why he's warming up so much, because he can feel the bite of the cold air against the exposed skin of his hands and face. Either that, or it's tied into the way he can't take his eyes off Mitchell, running slightly ahead of him, and the sight's not just making him warm. He wonders if there's any way he can ditch Mitchell for five minutes when they get back inside, just so he doesn't have to go through the city with the beginnings of an erection that his sweatshirt isn't long enough to hide.

Mitchell stops when they get inside, blowing on his hands again, and when he looks at Lorne, he's flushed in a way that doesn't come from running too fast. It takes every fraction of military control Lorne has not to shove him against the wall. "You, er..." Mitchell takes a step closer to him. "What's out here?" he asks, which was not at all what Lorne was expecting him to say.

"Living quarters, mostly," he says. "We don't use them, too far from the control tower."

"Right." Mitchell frowns. "I guess this is kind of an odd thing to say, but are you sure you don't know what that plant does?"

"What plant?" Lorne asks, distracted by... he doesn't even know. By Mitchell, the smell of sweat and cold air that's clinging to his skin, the way he keeps looking at Lorne. "Oh. The plant. No idea, why?"

"Because," Mitchell says, and he's a lot closer to Lorne suddenly. "No offence, since I was kind of hoping things would go this way, but I wasn't planning on jumping you this morning and now I want –"

To touch you, Lorne fills in, because he feels exactly like that, and he may have a dumb crush, but that still doesn't explain why his skin aches with wanting to touch. "You think –"

"I think you should leave your sample here, and tell your botanist to come down and look later," Mitchell says. He's leaning against the wall now, pressing Lorne back into it. "I think you should kiss me now."

He leans across the last bit of space between the two of them and presses his mouth against Lorne's before Lorne's really registered that it's going to happen. Mitchell's skin is cold against his, and when he kisses back, Mitchell's mouth tastes faintly of Earth, of something he should have missed and really hasn't. "I really want to –" Mitchell says breathlessly when they break apart, and Lorne nods. Yes. Absolutely. Anything.

He leans into Mitchell again, and gets a hand in the center of his chest, stopping him. "Not to say Sam wouldn't protect us," Mitchell says. "But I'd guess being caught in a corridor with me probably wouldn't do a lot for your reputation around here."

Since most of the gossip says Lorne is currently fucking Parrish (good friend, very straight), Cadman (very good friend, too much like a kid sister), Ronon (over after six months, back to just good friends), and/or Sheppard (just... no), Lorne's not sure spreading that rumor would actually hurt too much. That said, he's also not sure he wants to provide first hand evidence to go along with it.

"This way," he says, ducking out from under Mitchell's arm and setting a brisk pace down the corridor. He's halfway there before he remembers the plant, dropping it at the edge of the corridor as they go.

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The unused living quarters are exactly like the ones closer to the center of the city, complete with beds that really weren't designed for two people; the only difference is, these are all stripped down to bare mattresses, so Lorne's head bounces when Mitchell pushes him down. He barely notices, distracted by Mitchell's hands sliding under his sweatshirt, trailing cold over his too-hot skin. The tiny part of his brain not focused on Mitchell's mouth, the muscles of Mitchell's back through his t-shirt, Mitchell's erection against his hip, is still trying to wrap itself around the idea that he's having sex, probably alien-plant-induced sex, with a visiting lieutenant colonel at 0430 in the morning. On the long list of strange things that have happened to him in Pegasus, this is at least one that's unlikely to end in his death/capture/unpleasant injuring.

"If I'm keeping you from something more important..." Mitchell says with a laugh, everything dialed down a few degrees now that they're touching, like whatever the plant did to them knows that they're doing what it wants.

"Thinking about duty rotations," he offers. Mitchell's still smiling, so Lorne adds, "I'm easily distracted though."

"Is that right?" Mitchell asks, and peels Lorne's sweatshirt off. Except it doesn't really work, because Lorne's flat on his back, trapping most of the material, and he ends up half-choking on a drawstring. "That didn't work," Mitchell says, sounding amused. He helps Lorne extract his head from the soft material.

"Not so much," Lorne agrees, and pulls off his own sweatshirt, and the t-shirt under it, watching Mitchell's eyes darken again. He reaches up, hooks a hand round Mitchell's neck and drags him down into a hard kiss, which has the added advantage of getting Mitchell's hands back on his skin, everything warmer now. He pushes his hips up into Mitchell's weight and this, this, he's missed from Earth, still misses from Earth after years on Atlantis when he's stopped missing almost everything else.

"Mm, yeah," Mitchell says intelligently, then, "Want to fuck?"

"Didn't think to pick up condoms and lube for my morning run," Lorne says, but the thought's enough.

"No, just a weapon." Mitchell shrugs. "Your loss," he says, sliding his hand into Lorne's sweatpants, and it really doesn't feel like much of a loss at all, especially when he manages to get his own hand round Mitchell's cock.

It feels good, better than good, like being wrapped in a warm blanket round the two of them, trapping the rasp of their breathing, the scrape of skin on skin, cloth on cloth, and it's so easy to lose himself in the rush of sensation, the rapid drive towards orgasm.

So easy, except that the tiny part of his brain that still hasn't switched off points out that they're on the west pier, far out of the city and likely to pass several people on their way back to the residential areas.

"Wait," he says breathlessly, stilling his hand on Mitchell's cock. Mitchell groans and thrusts into Lorne's hand, still stroking him. "Wait," Lorne says again, catching Mitchell's wrist in his free hand. "Stop."

"Tell me you're kidding," Mitchell says, his voice rough.

"Let me – I can't walk through the city with come stains on my pants," Lorne says.

Mitchell blinks, looking kind of sex-dazed, then pulls himself together. "Right. Sure. Naked's good."

"Yeah," Lorne agrees stupidly. He feels the way Mitchell looks, caught between practical things like not outing himself to the entire city, and far less practical things like Mitchell's hand still on him. "Right."

He remembers just in time that he's wearing his holster, fumbling it off with shaky hands and shoving his pants down. Next to him, Mitchell's apparently decided to remove his t-shirt as well, and when they crash together again, Lorne feels like he's pressing against miles, acres of bare, cool skin; they don't even bother with hand-jobs this time, thrusting into each other and touching everywhere they can, till Lorne's skin tingles with it, and every nerve ending in his body vibrates when he comes, gasping and sweating and barely aware of Mitchell shuddering through his own orgasm against him.

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"So," Mitchell says when Lorne's finally regained enough control of his limbs to (a) get up and (b) look at his watch and realize he's almost certainly going to be late reporting for duty. "Shower here and walk through the city damp, or shower in your quarters but walk through the city looking... like that... first?"

Mitchell, of course, doesn't have to be on duty at all, and is lazing back on the bed, still naked, one arm tucked behind his head, smiling up at Lorne. It's not helping Lorne talk himself into leaving. Nor is the prospect of explaining to Parrish exactly how he knows that the plant should probably be handled with hazmat gear. Not that they haven't done much more embarrassing things as a team, but still – Parrish will know, and he can guarantee Cadman will find out, and there'll be teasing. Lots of it.

"Rely on my Air Force stealth skills to get me through the city unnoticed and shower in my quarters," he says, shrugging off the thoughts of what his friends will do to him, and pulling his pants back on. "Always worked before."

Mitchell raises an eyebrow, giving him the exact same skeptical look that Sheppard uses. It's unnerving. "Do this often, then?"

"Oh, all the time," Lorne says dryly. He fumbles the buckles on his thigh holster, then realizes he's picked up Mitchell's and peers under the bed for his own. "Bring all the visiting Lieutenant Colonels out here for a run, then dose them up with sex pollen so I can get them into bed."

Mitchell shrugs, as much as he can while he's horizontal. "So I shouldn't go feeling special or anything?"

Lorne's pretty sure he can't pull off enough sarcasm to say something about how Mitchell's the first person he's risked doing this with in more time than he really wants to count – he's a little afraid it will come out sounding exactly as true as it is, and that, though the plant helped, there's a pretty good chance it was only working with what was already there. Mitchell certainly doesn't seem like he's bothered by it. "Nope," he says easily.

He sits on the edge of the bed to retie his running shoes. When he's done, Mitchell sits up behind him, hands on Lorne's shoulders to turn him slightly. Lorne goes with it, mildly confused, and Mitchell smiles, sliding one hand through Lorne's hair. "There," he says. "Make you slightly less obvious."

Lorne thinks it'll probably take more than smoothing out his hair, but the gesture's oddly sweet, and a little reassuring, given the circumstances. "Thanks," he says, leaning in to kiss Mitchell, smelling sweat and sex and still a faint hint of Atlantis' morning air on his skin.

Mitchell kisses back for a long time, then pushes him gently away. "Go on, botanists to find, Marines to berate. You'll be late, and I don't want Sheppard coming after me."

"No, probably not," Lorne agrees. It's not like Sheppard won't be able to guess at what's happened, though hopefully not the sex pollen part – for someone who gets in as many romantic/sexual problems off-world because he doesn't pick up the clues when someone's coming on to him, he's very good at picking them up when it comes to other people.

Plus, he caught Lorne staring in the gateroom, which probably didn't help.

He gets up, taking a moment to wish for a life signs' detector, then figures he really has snuck through Atlantis before without being noticed, and it's pretty early for most people to be up and about. "You're all right finding your way back?" he asks Mitchell, who nods.

"No problem. You might want to get rid of the sample, though. If you can manage it without being overcome by lust."

He grins when he says it, and Lorne really doesn't need a plant to be overcome by lust, not when Mitchell's naked and smiling at him, looking like he's seriously thinking of just going to sleep, not that Lorne can blame him. "I'll do my best," he says dryly. "Have a good day."

"You too," Mitchell says sleepily. "And, hey – come find me when you've got some time. We should finish up that run."

"Right," Lorne says, and reminds himself to bring condoms and lube when he does.

And to keep an eye out for any more unfamiliar plants.


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