Spoilers: Absolutely none
Summary: A little bit of futurish (about 2 years) fluff that popped into my head today when we were talking about things kids say.
John wasn't sure how Teyla had managed to talk them into it but he suspected that she might have been using Jedi mind tricks. He didn't think it was simply female wiles, because he knew he was immune to those, even if Rodney wasn't. Nope, there had to be something else to make his resolve crumble as quickly as it had. Maybe she'd hypnotized them.
It wasn't that he was scared, exactly (and even if he was he was never going to admit it), it was just that he found being entrusted with caring for Torren the most nerve wracking thing anyone had asked him to do. Ever.
Rodney had spent the morning laughing at him as he followed about a step behind Torren as he played in their quarters, gently prying anything remotely dangerous out of his tiny fingers. He didn't care what Rodney said, it was all about safety and not about keeping his comics from being crumpled and his golf clubs scuffed. Rodney had lunged across the room pretty damn quickly when it was his laptop that was about to be used as a launch pad for the little wooden puddle jumper that Torren carried everywhere.
Of course, the benefits of spending time with the three year old probably out weighed the tight knot of nerves in his stomach.
Watching Rodney's eye twitch as he tried to keep his temper and decipher Torren's weirdly logical but truly baffling requests was a joy. McKay's hair was sticking up in all directions and his cheeks were flushed in a way that made John want to kiss them. He'd had to jump in and stop Rodney's head exploding when Torren had asked for 'a ham sandwich with no bread' for his lunch.
Now they were both sitting there staring at Torren who, in turn, was looking right back at them like they were idiots.
“Mom says I can have sparkly hair.”
“Sparkly hair?” Rodney finally asked, his voice breaking a little in confusion. It wasn't his fault, he didn't handle not understanding well.
“Yuh,” Torren agreed, through a mouthful of ham with no bread.
“Like, with glitter,” the scientist asked, his inner valley girl peeking through.
“Sparkly stuff,” Rodney tried, his voice betraying that he knew just how much he'd lost his grip of the conversation.
“It's like the snow inside the globe Auntie Jenny got you for Christmas,” John explained, just to see Rodney's face scrunch up in disgust that he hadn't thought of that.
“Can I put that in my hair?” Torren asked, obviously considering the possibilities.
“Only if you want your mother to kill us,” Rodney muttered.
“Never mind. Back to your hair,” McKay said, steering the boy's thoughts away from areas that would involve their asses being handed to them on a plate. “Does anyone else have sparkly hair?”
“You're funny Uncle Odd-knee.”
“Hysterical. And it's Rodney. Rrrrrrrodney.”
“Rrrrrrrr,” Torren said, before bursting into a fit of giggles.
“Do you think Teyla dropped him on his head?” Rodney asked, looking at John with big serious eyes.
“No Rodney, I don't think Teyla dropped him.”
Torren's giggling died down. He shoved the last of his ham in his mouth and climbed up on to John's knee, leaving meaty smears on his BDUs. John figured hammy hand prints were the least of the indignities his pants had been subjected to and chose to ignore them. Torren looked at him seriously for a few seconds before leaning forward and wedging his knee in John's groin.
“Sparkly,” he said, his little greasy hand rubbing through John's hair. Through the tears of pain welling up in his eyes John saw Rodney's face light up with understanding.
“Spiky. Teyla says you can have spiky hair.”
“Just like Uncle John,” Torren agreed happily, planting a messy kiss on his cheek as John lifted his little bony toddler knees away from his sensitive parts.
“Of course, just like wonderful Uncle John,” Rodney agreed a little sourly, his face pinching up with old hurts. John wanted to hug him but he had a lap full of wriggling boy.
“And she says I have to ask you if I can have a tool kit to help you when you make the city better.”
Rodney's smile made John decide to risk squashing the boy and he leaned over to plant a kiss on his favorite pair of lips in two galaxies.