Word Count: 934
Rating: PG.
Category: Angst.
Story Status: Complete
Summary: Rodney reflects on his name and how it got it. 

Set sometime mid to late Season 3, slight spoilers for ‘McKay and Mrs Miller’.

Thank you to Jayne Perry for the beta-reading.

The Ancestry of Meredith
By Leesa Perrie

My mother was proud of her Welsh ancestry.  In fact, when she was in college, her parents paid for her to take a trip to Britain during one of her summer vacations.  She spent a couple of weeks going around the usual tourist attractions before staying in Wales for the rest of the summer.  She fell in love with the place, and had intended to emigrate there as soon as she’d finished her degree.

Of course, she didn’t.  Instead, during her last year, she met my father, and in a moment of ill-thought-out passion, I was conceived.  My father made an ‘honest woman’ of her; in other words, they got married before I was born.

She never went back to Wales after that, and certainly didn’t emigrate.  My father wasn’t interested in leaving Canada, and definitely had no intention of crossing the Atlantic.  My mother never forgave me for ruining her plans. Not that it was my fault; she should have been more careful, but she was never one to blame herself if there was someone else she could get away with blaming.

I know that their arguments were rooted in her desire to go to Wales, as well as her frustration with becoming a mother so early in her life.  She’d wanted a career, but until I was school age, she stayed at home.  Even then, her work was not what she’d envisioned, having to be available to take me to school.  No childminders for me, my father said they were a waste of money and that she would have to put her career on hold until I was older.  This caused more arguments; especially as I was a ‘precocious’ child who was always into everything, always asking questions, always wanting to know how and why things worked; always demanding.

My father was proud of my intelligence, but after a while he started to spend more time away from home, working, to get away from his genius progeny.  Away from the endless chatter and questions.  And my mother resented him for that too, leaving her to deal with me all the time.

Jeannie was unexpected.  Another accident that trapped my mother even more, and yet she never seemed to resent my sister.  Funny, really, how everything changed.  How Jeannie became the centre of their lives.

They still argued, but less often. 

As for me, I was the child no one really wanted.  Too intelligent, but with no common sense and an inability to ‘fit in’ with the crowd.  Even the other brainy kids didn’t like me. 

I survived though, building my own walls to keep the hurt at bay. 

My name didn’t help any.  A traditional Welsh name, in keeping with my mother’s heritage.  Masculine originally, now considered feminine by most of the world, though still a boy’s name in Wales. 

A cruel joke I suspect. 

My father insisted on two middle names; one, Rodney, after a friend and the other, Ingram, after some character from a book.  I guess they could be worse, and at least Rodney is less embarrassing than my first name, though still considered somewhat nerdy by some.  I wish I could have gotten people to call me ‘Rod’; so much more cool.  But then, as I am so painfully aware, I’m not cool.  Cold, some think, or even say, but not cool. 

As for my ancestry, I’ve never been much bothered with it myself.  My mother came from Welsh stock, so what?  She was Canadian, and four generations so.  My father came from Scottish stock, but again, he was Canadian born and bred, and several generations so. 

I’m not Welsh or Scottish, I’m Canadian and proud of it.  Who cares where my ancestors hailed from?  None of them were Ancients, which is unfortunate as that would have been of great use to me, but beyond that I have no interest in my so called ‘roots’. 

I certainly have no intention of visiting the lands of my forefathers.  Especially as Jeannie, who is more interested in these things, and I blame that on Caleb as it seems the sort of thing that an English major and vegetarian might be into, has discovered that our Welsh family were originally from the Catalonia region in Spain, not Wales, and that they had come over in the early 1800s.  It seems that shortly after settling in Wales they changed their name to Llewellyn.

My mother had been wrong, too bad she never lived to find that out.  Or maybe it’s as well; she’d had too many dreams shattered in her life, perhaps it’s a good thing she wasn’t around to have this one shattered as well.

After all, for all their inadequacies as parents, they were still my parents, and I did care about them both; even if they sometimes seemed not to care about me. 

I cared about Jeannie too, even during those years when I cut her out of my life.  She wouldn’t listen to me, and I walked away.  Petty, yes I know, but also self-defence; I didn’t want to see her start to resent her husband and her child the way mother had resented father and me; didn’t want to see her grow bitter about putting her career on hold.

I was wrong, and yes I’m big enough to admit it, to myself at least.  She never resented them, never grew bitter about her decision.  Jeannie isn’t my mother, and she’s happy with her life. 

Go figure.

Of course, she’s talking about taking a trip to Catalonia.  I just hope she doesn’t fall in love with the place. 

The End

Author's Notes:

1) From the ‘Behind the Name’ site.
Gender: Masculine & Feminine
From the Welsh name Maredudd or Meredydd, possibly meaning "great lord" or "sea
lord". Since the mid-1920s it has been used more often for girls than for boys in English-speaking countries, though it is still a masculine name in Wales.

2) It was recently pointed out to me that in ‘Duet’ most of the degrees on Rodney’s wall in his quarters have the name ‘Rodney Ingram McKay’ on them.  Hence the second middle name.

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