Black Against the Snow
He couldn't quite remember how he came to be kneeling in the snow. As Ronon approached him across the blood-stained field, John moistened cold-numbed lips. "They're safe?"
"Safely back on Atlantis." Ronon stood above him, snowflakes ageing his hair. "You were supposed to follow us through, you know."
"Yeah," John agreed. Whiteness crept across his vision. The raiders' bodies were already shrouded with snow, almost gone. He'd killed three, he thought, while Rodney's flock of newbie scientists had squawked in panic, dark targets against the snow. As Ronon and Teyla had led them to safety, John had taken the rear. "And you were supposed to go through," he said.
"Waited for you."
"I can see that."
Ronon knelt beside him, jerking his chin towards John's hand. "You can put that away."
Put what…? Oh. Yes. His side-arm. John raised his arm, and it felt like lead. His hand had been buried in snow up to the wrist, and the white knuckles that gripped the gun didn't feel as if they belonged to him. He tried to speak, but no articulate sound came out. Ronon's hands looked firm but gentle as they prized John's numb fingers from the weapon.
"Can you stand?" Ronon asked.
"Uh…" The steam from his rapid breathing was making his vision blur around the edges. When he tried to push himself up, the white world cracked open in excruciating red pain. He would have fallen, except that Ronon was there to catch him. John choked back a scream, silencing it against the warmth of Ronon's chest.
"Guess that's a no," Ronon said quietly.
John's hand was pressed to his side. When he raised it, it wasn't just stained with blood, but drenched in it. "Knew…" He coughed weakly. "Knew I'd been hit, I guess. Didn't realise… Didn't have time to…" He could feel himself starting to shake. Once the tremors seized him, there was no stopping them. He struggled for breath, his fist grasping a handful of Ronon's coat.
Ronon saw it all, but said nothing unnecessary, just, "Let's go."
Even now, instinct was to push himself away, to say that he was good, that he could walk by himself. Instead, he found himself asking, "They're really safe?"
"Yeah," Ronon said. "Everybody is, except you."
It was enough. It always would be. It had to be. "That's good," he murmured, and he let Ronon bring him home.
I also posted a story a few days ago to sga_flashfic This is kind of silly and crack-like, though it did arise from an entirely serious thought about last week's SGA episode, Infection. This is a story in which the Wraith struggle with their diet, Sheppard and McKay struggle to play teacher, and everyone struggles with chocolate cake and other related evils:
A Wraith's Guide to Food and Nutrition