John woke up for the third time that night due to Rodney accidentally kicking him as he tossed and turned. "Ugh, Rodney will you just settle down and go to sleep before you kick me out of the bed?" John pleaded.
"Sorry can't sleep," said Rodney and then his voice started to falter, "Look I'll... I'll understand if you want to go back to your own quarters."
John turned onto his side to face Rodney and placed a hand on his arm, "Hey what's wrong?"
"Nothing nothing, it's just been a long day," Rodney answered and then muttered something about incompetent minions. He sighed and turned away from John.
John shook his head and pulled Rodney back toward him, "Come on, talk to me. A stressful day in the labs never makes you look this depressed. Tell me what happened. If you get it off your chest you'll feel much better and then we can both get some sleep."
Rodney, knowing John wasn't going to drop it, bit his lip and then took a deep breath before he started babbling away a mile a minute, "Look, you have to understand this isn't something I planned, I mean neither of us did. It just happened and I'm so so sorry. You know I'd never do anything to hurt you, not on purpose and and... Oh God! I don't deserve you at all and I wouldn't blame you if you walked right out of here and never spoke to me again!"
John's eyes widened at the flustered apology, but he was utterly confused as Rodney hadn't actually said what he was apologizing for. He was afraid Rodney would hyperventilate at the rate he was going, "Rodney stop! Calm down and breathe." Rodney shut his mouth and took a few minutes to catch his breath. John continued when he was sure Rodney wasn't going to pass out, "Ok now tell me what exactly happened? What are you apologizing for?"
Rodney stared at the ceiling refusing to look at John. "I cheated on you, with Carson," he murmured softly.
John couldn't quite make out what Rodney had said, "What was that?"
"I cheated on you with Carson," Rodney repeated a bit louder and faster.
John's eyebrows shot up in surprise, but then he grinned. He rolled over on top of Rodney and made a low growling sound in his throat, "So you and Carson huh?"
Rodney nodded. His eyes widened in panic wondering what John was going to do to him.
John put his mouth next to Rodney's ear, "That's hot," he whispered seductively.
Rodney was quite taken aback, that was not the reaction he was expecting at all. "What? You mean you're ok with it?" he asked barely able to conceal the shock in his voice.
"Well, I'd be kind of a hypocrite if I wasn't ok with it," John drawled.
"Oh," said Rodney, then it hit him what John was actually saying, "Wait what? You're saying you cheated on me too?"
John nodded looking a bit embarrassed.
"And when did this happen?" Rodney asked.
"About a week ago I guess," John answered.
Rodney felt himself growing angry even though he had no right to be angry under the circumstances. He couldn't help it though and found his tone growing harsher, "So when were you planning on telling me this?"
John rolled off of Rodney and sat up leaning against the pillows and headboard. He reached up and rubbed the back of his neck with one hand before answering, "I don't know Rodney. I'm sorry, I wanted to tell you, but it just never seemed like the right time. I suppose there never is a right time for something like this."
"Except for when your significant other has just confessed to doing the same thing," said Rodney bitterly.
John sighed, "Yes true."
"What I don't understand," Rodney began feeling his anger escalating, "is how you've been able to sleep perfectly fine all week knowing that you betrayed me!"
"Look I just tried not to think about it ok? I mean not sleeping wasn't going to undo what I did," John answered, "How can you even be angry at me anyway when you just did the exact same thing? I thought you'd be relieved like I was."
"Relieved? Why should I be relieved that we can't trust each other?" Rodney asked incredulously.
John could see the hurt in the other man's face, "Aww Rodney, don't be like that. We both made a mistake, why don't we just call it even and start over with a clean slate?"
"I don't know...," Rodney trailed off. "Who was it that you cheated with anyway?" he asked suddenly curious.
"Carson," John grinned and bit his lip to keep from laughing.
Rodney gaped at John, "What, really? You're kidding right?"
John shook his head, his grin growing larger. "It seems we both have similar tastes in men," he said finding it even harder to hold back laughter.
Rodney smiled at that. "Yeah I guess we do. So does Carson for that matter," he mused.
At that point John couldn't hold back any more and he burst out laughing uncontrollably. Rodney soon joined him and they both laughed until they were gasping for air and had tears streaming down their cheeks. When they had both managed to calm down John tenderly wiped the laughter tears from Rodney's face, "Are we going to be ok?"
Rodney returned the favor and wiped John's laughter tears away, "Yeah I think so, we're good."
John put his arms around Rodney and hugged him close, "Good."
Rodney sighed contentedly and leaned into John's touch, "So did you mean what you said before?"
"Um which part?" John asked.
"That you think me and Carson together is hot," Rodney clarified.
John grinned, "Oh yeah, definitely."
"What does that mean exactly?" Rodney asked, "I mean do you want me to keep seeing him and watch or what?"
"Not exactly," John said, "I want us to both keep seeing him, together."
Rodney considered this, "You mean at the same time? All three of us?"
John nodded, "Don't tell me you've never fantasized about being with both me and Carson at the same time."
Rodney blushed and didn't deny it, "Isn't this a discussion we should be having with him as well?"
"You're right," John said, "Obviously he has to have a say in this too. Let's invite him over shall we?" John grabbed his radio off the nightstand.
Rodney panicked, "No no no, I didn't mean it! Look I don't think I can do this with him again. I mean physicals are going to be awkward enough as it is."
John ignored him and put his radio in his ear and called Carson. It took a few tries but he finally got him on the line. He smiled when he heard Carson's sleepy and irritated voice.
"Ack what is it? It's the middle of the bloody night!" Carson snapped.
"I need you to come down to Rodney's quarters immediately," John answered.
"Oh what is it this time? Did he get a paper cut or stub his toe?" Carson asked grumpily.
John chuckled, "No nothing like that. Just get down here."
"I see, must be serious then. I'll be there as soon as I can," Carson said and signed off.
John took off his radio and put it back on the nightstand, "Don't worry, he'll be here soon."
Rodney groaned, "I can't believe you just did that!"
"Rodney relax, we're just going to talk to him," said John reassuringly, "Nothing has to happen here tonight that you don't want."
"Well in that case, I don't want to talk to him," said Rodney indignantly, "Call Carson back and tell him not to come."
John sighed, "You know that's not what I meant. We really need to discuss this whole situation with him, whether we decide to act on it or not."
"Well why does it have to be tonight?" Rodney whined.
John narrowed his eyes at Rodney, "The sooner the better. We both know that if we don't do this now, then you'll avoid both me and Carson for as long as possible."
"Fine," said Rodney resignedly, "might as well get it over with."
Just then the door chimed and John thought it open. In hurried a bedraggled looking Carson, the door automatically closing behind him. He was still in his pajamas and his hair was sticking out every which way. He had expected to see Rodney in some sort of minor medical emergency, but all he saw was Rodney sitting up in bed looking mortified and John stretched out next to him with that lazy grin of his plastered all over his face. Carson looked back and forth between them a couple of times before it hit him what was going on. He realized that they must have confessed to each other their brief affairs with him. He should have realized that was what this was about when John called him, but it simply hadn't occurred to him in his sleep addled state. "Oh bloody hell!" he cursed dropping his medical bag.
"Glad you could join us," said John. "Have a seat," he gestured to the foot of the bed.
Carson made his way over to the bed wringing his hands nervously. He sat down on the edge of the foot of the bed and smiled weakly at John and Rodney. John smiled back but Rodney wouldn't look at him.
"Do you know why I asked you to come?" John asked feeling like a principle having a talk with a naughty student.
"Aye, I think I've got a pretty good idea," Carson hung his head apologetically, "I want you both to know how deeply sorry I am. I know how close the two of you are and I never meant to do anything to come between you. They were moments of weakness. I hope that you'll both accept my most sincere apologies and someday find it in your hearts to forgive me." Carson felt tears well up in his eyes and he quickly brushed them away.
John couldn't help but shake his head at the emotional Scotsman. He crawled over to Carson and put his arms around him. "Hey it's ok," he stroked Carson's back soothingly. "We're ok," John gestured between himself and Rodney, "Besides, you can't put all the blame on yourself. It's not like you forced either of us into it."
Carson nodded and rested his head on John's shoulder, "I suppose you're right."
Rodney glanced at the two of them and felt a sudden surge of jealousy. Though truth be told, he wasn't sure exactly what he was jealous of. Perhaps he just felt left out and wanted some physical contact as well, but he was too apprehensive about the whole situation to go over and join them. He quickly looked away hoping John and Carson wouldn't notice.
"Rodney, you're awfully quiet," said Carson, "Is everything ok between the two of you like John says?"
Rodney stared at the ceiling, "Yes yes, we're good, everything's fine."
"Then why won't you look at me?" Carson asked.
John chuckled, "Oh he's just nervous about an idea I had. Though maybe you can help me convince him."
Rodney found himself blushing again as he was reminded of John's three-way suggestion and all thoughts of jealousy left him.
Carson didn't fail to notice Rodney's reaction, "Oh? And what idea might this be that's got him all flustered?"
"Well I was thinking that the three of us could all have some fun together," John answered.
Carson's eyebrows shot up in surprise, "Now that is an idea, and a brilliant one at that," he turned to Rodney, "but it's not what you want is it?"
"No I do, believe me I do Carson," Rodney answered, "I've actually fantasized about this for quite some time."
"What's wrong then?" Carson inquired gently.
"It's just, if we're going to do this, I don't want it to just be about sex. I wouldn't want you to be the third wheel that just joins us in the bedroom. I'd want this to be an actual three-way relationship, with you being as emotionally invested in both me and John as we are with each other and vice versa," Rodney explained.
"Absolutely," said Carson, "I want that as well. You have to know that I care deeply for both you and John. I wouldn't have slept with either of you otherwise."
Rodney looked at John, "What about you? Is that what you want too?"
"Of course it is," said John matter-of-factly, "now come here."
Rodney felt relief flood through him to know that John and Carson were both on the same page as him. He made his way over to the foot of the bed where the others were sitting. John and Carson both drew him into a tight hug and Rodney couldn't remember the last time he had felt this safe and loved.