Title: Moment Of Weakness
Summary: Sometimes Elizabeth gives in and sometimes Rodney can't help but ignore his better judgement
Author's Note: Written for the mckayweir One Word Prompt Party using the prompt word ‘cuddle’.
Elizabeth Weir wasn’t generally the sort of woman to cry. She was the sort of woman to exhibit steely determination in any given situation and who kept her head when all about her were losing theirs. You didn’t become an international diplomat by crying at the slightest provocation. You certainly didn’t get military respect from getting teary eyed every time something went wrong. She couldn’t exactly stop being a human being however and things got on top of even her at times and so although she partly hated the weakness, there were times like these when she surrendered to the feeling and allowed herself to cry.
There wasn’t any particular reason for it really, just an accumulation of things. Too many deaths recently, too many video messages delivering her deepest sympathies to families whose loved ones had been lost. Too much stress, too many seemingly unending problems to deal with whose solutions were not simple and yet were vital to their continued existence. Too much compromise of her beliefs, doing things she never thought possible both in order to survive and to help put right the mess they had made by awakening the Wraith in the first place. And to top it all off it was damn well raining now too, the sky grey and miserable, echoing her mood. She knew she was being stupid, that even after the tears had dried up the problems would still remain and she would have solved nothing by giving in, but she couldn’t stop herself. So she stood there, letting them fall, knowing she had no choice in the matter and consoling herself that at least it was cathartic.
And that nobody knew.
She didn’t want them questioning her. She certainly didn’t want any jokes about her being hormonal or something. She just wanted a moment to herself.
It wasn’t to be.
Rodney McKay wasn’t generally the sort of man to attempt to comfort anyone who was upset, let alone a crying woman. In fact it made him distinctly uncomfortable. It wasn’t as if he was heartless or lacked compassion, it was simply that he was generally very bad at being sympathetic. Whatever he said inevitably seemed to be the wrong thing and often only served to exacerbate the situation further. In the end he had come to realise that he was so basically inept at the task that he was better off just leaving it to someone else, perhaps managing a sympathetic look at most to try and show that he wasn’t completely devoid of feeling.
Still it could definitely be said that there were very few things he felt less equipped to handle than someone who was upset.
He barged into the room without thinking, starting to talk straight away, tablet perched on his arm in a manner that was so commonplace now that it was almost a fifth limb.
He came to a grinding halt when Elizabeth turned to face him, obviously startled, quickly swiping tears from her eyes.
He blanched, feeling at once both awkward and hideously embarrassed. He barely managed a mumbled and hurried ‘sorry’ before he fled from the room again.
He was three corridors away before his flight slowed and he began to think. Against his better judgement he turned and headed back.
Elizabeth angrily attempted to dry her face with the back of her hand, more annoyed at herself than at Rodney’s reaction. She really shouldn’t have given in like that. It wasn’t right. What must he think of her?
She knew she shouldn’t really care and that it didn’t actually matter but somehow, despite her telling herself otherwise, it very much did.
When the door opened again she wanted to tell him to just go away, desperately needing a moment longer to compose herself, but she didn’t want him to hear the watery, tear filled tremble in her voice and so she said nothing.
She wasn’t sure what she expected of him – carrying on as if nothing happened perhaps, which likely would have been for the best given the circumstances. She certainly did not expect him to walk up to her and, without saying a word, pull her into a warm, if somewhat awkward cuddle.
That was really what it was too; a cuddle. Elizabeth hadn’t been cuddled in years. She’d been hugged and embraced and held but not given a proper ‘there there it’ll be alright’ cuddle for as long as she could remember. To be honest she’d rarely needed one and even when she did she was very good at hiding the fact.
Despite feeling somewhat stupid, she gave in to the sudden feeling of comfort and understanding and surrendered once more, burying her head in his shoulder and feeling that it was okay to cry. He patted her back gently and she almost laughed fondly, imagining the slightly ill at ease look on his face.
He was doing well for a man who had quite literally run from this moments earlier.
Before he left, Elizabeth having taken some time to pull herself together again, she thanked him with a quick kiss on the cheek to show him how sincere her gratitude was. His grin beamed at her in a way it never had before.
Part of her warned not to encourage his affections.
Another part very much welcomed them.