Advent Calendar - 21st December 2008

Shopping in Pegasus
by Leesa Perrie

Set Season 3, before The Return

Thank you to Jayne Perry for the beta-reading.

M4L-419, more commonly known as Mall World - one of Ford’s names that had stuck - was a prosperous planet that welcomed traders from all corners of the galaxy.  It was a good place to find Ancient devices, though they were usually broken, much to his irritation.  But still, spare parts were always useful and there was always the chance of something major turning up.  Like a ZPM. 

Well, one could dream.

It was also useful at times, like birthdays and Christmas, for finding an unusual gift for a friend.  Of course, unusual didn’t always go down as well as one imagined, but surely it was the thought that counted?  At least, that’s what he’d always been told anyway.

And until the gate bridge was completed, Mall World was more convenient than a trip back to Earth, or trying to persuade the supply staff that an X-Box was a necessity if they didn’t want to see the Commanding Officer of Atlantis go completely insane.  Or the Head of Science for that matter - he was sure he could have gotten Sheppard to share.

So, no X-Box, not until the gate bridge was up and running and going back to Earth was much easier. 

What to get, though, what to get?  Teyla had been easy; some native teas, a couple of scented candles and a blanket that she’d been oh so not subtly mooning over in front of him.  He could take a hint.  Well, he could take one when it was pointed out so obviously.

Ronon hadn’t been that hard to buy for either.  A knife, which Sheppard had helped him choose seeing as he wouldn’t know a good knife from a bad one.  Of course, Sheppard’s help had ended up with him buying the most expensive knife on offer, so the caveman could forget about getting anything else from him.  Not that he had a clue what else to get anyway.

Carson had whisky, a 21 year old Glenlivet single malt.  Expensive and yes, a stereotype, but for some reason Carson liked the foul tasting stuff.  That was one thing he’d managed to procure from Earth; smuggled here by a member of the Daedalus crew.  For a fee, of course. 

As for Elizabeth, Teyla had used her not so subtle approach again and he’d purchased a carving that, personally, he thought was ugly but Teyla clearly seemed to think Elizabeth would like.  He deferred to her judgement and hoped she was right.

So that just left Sheppard.  He’d asked Teyla, but she’d said he needed to do this one on his own, because, “he is as a brother, is he not?”.  What sort of question is that to ask someone?  And no, so absolutely not true at that.  But she wouldn’t be budged, and had apparently told Ronon not to help either.

It wasn’t like he felt comfortable asking Elizabeth, and Carson had already made it clear he was on his own with all the presents, saying that as it was the thought that counted, the thought needed to be his own. 

If he didn’t know better, he’d say it was a damned conspiracy.

He wandered around the marketplace, but nothing seemed to be right.  There were one or two items that might do, but he wasn’t sure.  He should have bribed the Daedalus guy to bring something for Sheppard too, even if it wasn’t an X-Box; the coward hadn’t thought he could smuggle in something electronic like that.

Too late now.  Christmas was next week and the Daedalus almost back to Earth.

He was about to give up, wondering if he could make Sheppard a handheld gaming device – after all, he was a genius and it surely couldn’t be all that hard - when he spotted something hidden amongst a pile of metal junk. 

The device had a cylindrical handgrip at one end, with a clear tube extending from it that lit up as soon as he picked it up.  Probably ATA gene activated, then.  He grinned when he realised what it reminded him of and radioed Teyla, asking her to come and haggle for the Ancient flashlight for him.  It wasn’t a design he’d seen before, perhaps it wasn’t widely used or was defunct?  Whatever, it was just perfect. 

Especially if he could barter Stackhouse out of his Star Wars DVDs to go with it.  His grin widened at the thought, face lighting up in boyish glee.  Oh boy, Sheppard was going to freak over this. 

And perhaps he wasn’t so bad at this present buying after all.

The End

A/N: 1) I have no idea how easy/hard it would be for Rodney to procure a 21 year old Glenlivet single malt whisky, but just go with me on this one please!  In case you’re curious about the price, then at the time of writing a bottle of this would be selling for around £65, or $100 (US dollars).  2) Jayne, my trusty beta, threw some ideas around for what Rodney could buy Sheppard from a Pegasus galaxy world, and somewhere in amidst of them I’m sure she suggested a lightsabre, so credit where credit is due!

On to 22nd December

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