Disclaimer: Carson Beckett and Stargate Atlantis aren’t mine. They belong to Gekko Film Corp., MGM, and Sci-fi. Rose McKay isn’t really mine either. While I own the female counterpart, the male counterpart she’s based on belongs to Sci-fi, too.

Author’s note: In this AU, Rodney McKay is Rose McKay. Also, The fantabulous Medie made the dustjacket.

Frustrated, Dr. Rose McKay smacked the armrest of the large metal chair she was sitting in. She regretted the move almost immediately when a searing pain shot through her arm. ‘Why won’t it work?’ she wondered. There was no use asking, however; Rose knew why it wouldn’t work.

“Can’t get it to work, can you?” a male voice with a thick Scottish accent asked. Rose looked up to see a man with piercing blue eyes walking towards her.

“Maybe I can, and I’m just not concentrating hard enough,” she shot back, refusing to admit defeat.

The scruffy Scotsman shook his head as he stopped a few inches away from the chair. “I don’t think you have the gene.”

Rose narrowed her blue eyes. She knew damn well she didn’t have the gene; she didn’t need anybody else to remind her. “And what makes you think that?” she asked.

“Because it would’ve worked before the third try.”

Still nursing her aching arm, Rose climbed out of the chair and ambled over to Blue Eyes. Even though she was shorter than he was, she drew herself up to her full five foot three inches. She pinned him with a stare. “And I suppose you have it, right?”

“As a matter of fact, I do,” he stated proudly.

“So, Mr. I-Have-the-Gene, do you have a name?”

“Dr. Carson Beckett,” he smiled as he held out a hand. Rose relaxed a little as she shook it.

“Dr. Rose McKay.”

Carson peered at the flag represented on the left sleeve of her jacket. “Canadian?”

“And proud.” A smug smile crept across her face. “So, if you have the gene, why haven’t you tried the chair yet?”

Carson’s face went from cheerful to nervous in ten seconds flat. Rose estimated that it must have been a record. He slowly backed away as he stumbled over his words. “Oh, I don’t think I should.”

“You’re not scared, are you?” Rose teased as she lifted a dark eyebrow.

“No, I just don’t want to blow us all up. You know what that thing can do.”

He was right. Everybody on the Atlantis project knew what had happened when Colonel Jack O’Neill had set off the technology and a weapon had destroyed an entire Ga’ould fleet. The petite physicist couldn’t blame him for being a little nervous.

Choosing to drop the teasing, she sent him a charming smile. “Well, I certainly hope someone can figure out how to use this thing. I’d like to see Atlantis before I die.”

“Me, too,” Carson echoed, absentmindedly staring at the chair. It looked so innocent yet everyone knew how dangerous it was.

“Oh, well, I’m sure someone will figure out how to use it. Lunch?” she asked.

“Sure.” With that, Carson and Rose went in search of food.


© 2004 Crimson Idealist