scherryzade: (pacific ocean)
[personal profile] scherryzade
Title: Newcomers: No Cost Option
Rating: PG-13 for language
Characters: Lorne, OC
Disclaimer: Not mine (except the mistakes, and the newcomers themselves), no harm meant.
Summary: Lorne has to clarify a few things for Mark Collins
A/N: An incidental Newcomers scene, taking place more or less after Five Callings (which story I should really try to follow up on at some point, but, hey, apparently Lorne's fine :) - part of a group of stories I'm thinking of as "Favours that the Atlantis senior staff are going to regret doing for AR-27"
A/N2: This was incited by [ profile] gelbes_gilatier , who ought to know better than to encourage me on Twitter (Why, hello there SPN/ER crossover fic that I'm not writing), and started as crack. But then it developed angst, because, hey, it's Mark...
A/N3: Ignore the title, it's crappy.

No Cost Option

"She cannae do this!" Collins is incensed.

"She can. She did," says Evan.

"It's - It's -" Mark flings his arms wide. "It's a fucking imposition, that's what it is."

"Permission to speak freely granted," says Evan, and bites back a smile.

"Sorry, sir," says Mark, deflating slightly. Then his expression hardens. "You had a hand in this, sir, didn't you?"

"I don't know what you mean."

"Aye, right you are, sir. Picture of fucking innocence, you are, sir, if you'll pardon my fucking English."

"It was entirely Captain Rodriguez' idea."

"She doesnae have the right!"

"She's your CO, Collins."

Mark looks torn. "Sir -"

"Are you questioning her judgement?"

"Nossir." He says it automatically, and knowing Mark, he means it, but that certainty is warring with something stronger.

"You don't think you deserve this?" asks Evan, and he says it to mock, not expecting Mark to look away so sharply. "You really don't?"

"It's just a bad idea all round, sir," says Mark, subdued.

Evan wants to shake him. "Why do you think she did this?"

"It's not-"

"What? It's not fair? It's not right? You don't want the responsibility? You really think it makes any difference to the job you're doing?"

"I'm not-"

"Yes, you are. No, I don't want to hear it. You are good at what you do, Mark. As good as any NCO in Atlantis. You should have been promoted years ago. Just because you could slip through the cracks in Colorado doesn't mean Rodriguez is going to let you get away with it here."

"I don't -"

"Are you talking back, Corporal? Is that your way to get bumped back to Private? Because believe me, the shit Rodriguez had to go through to get you promoted -" Evan breaks off, more pissed at himself than Collins. Christ, he thought it was funny, scheming with Rodriguez to get Mark promoted, despite Sheppard's doubts and the SGC's complete horror at the notion.

Evan had always assumed Mark was one of those guys who take pride in avoiding the responsibilities that promotion brought. That Atlantis had changed that. Now, with Mark standing in front of him, Corporal's stripes clenched in a white-knuckled fist, Evan's not so sure.

"I've seen you with Wright, Mark. I know you can lead. Hell, I've seen you with Rossi and Addes, all that little posse. Half of them are NCOs, but they all listen to you.

"Rodriguez knows it, too. But that's not why she asked - why she fought to get you this. She knows, just as well as you or I, that not everybody sees that. She does this for you, everybody sees the stripes. Everybody sees what you - what you are, here. In Atlantis, in 2-7."

Sees his worth.

"Captain Rodriguez went out on a limb for you, Corporal." He wills that to sink into Mark's thick skull. Mark's expression is unreadable, but he's looking down at the stripes.

"So I'm asking you again: Are you questioning her judgement?"

Mark snaps to attention. "Sir, nossir."


No Cost Option: NCO: Non-commisioned officer. See? Crappy title. I googled it. 'No Cost Option' isn't a phrase I've ever heard used, but it was better than Net Capital Outflow or Isocyanate.

A/N4: So, hey, hi there! I aten't dead. I've just spent the past three months or so failing to write for the Atlantis Big Bang Challenge, battling evil demons crappy work crapness, bitching about the failure of summer (it rained. All. The. Time.), losing all immunity to developing new fandoms* and generally feeling sorry for myself. I'm gonna throw out a few drabbly things, hopefully, just to get myself back on track. Don't, like, quote me on that. Evil demons may attack at any time.

*No, seriously. Some people react to stress by succumbing to every virus that comes their way. Me, I succumb to shiny, shiny new fandoms. First Sherlock, which I adore, even if I'm a little pissed that somebody found a better role for Benedict Cumberbatch than my Nate. Then Inception, which, dammit, I'm not that keen on, but then I found the kink meme. Then Merlin, because I started clicking automatically on all the links that mentioned 'Arthur' without checking which Arthur they meant, so I had to pick up the Merlin DVD, and now I'm pissed that I let myself be put off by the BBC-CGI, because it's adorable (why didn't anyone tell me?). And along the way, I also started watching the Sarah Connor Chronicles, but now I've started season 2, and I'm having some serious cognitive dissonance over the casting of whatshername from Garbage as a Terminator...

So, anyway. How are you all?
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