Set after The Siege III while they were back on Earth. Many thanks slashybits for beta.
Disclaimer: Not mine, no money, don't sue!
Spoon Full of Sugar...
Lt. Col. John Sheppard had seen some pretty gruesome and terrible things during his career in the military, but nothing could have prepared him for this. Afghanistan, those missions he officially never went on, the Wraith's feeding habits, they were nothing compared to the sight before him: Dr. Rodney McKay PhD, MS, BS, and whatever alphabets he was adding to his name today, subjecting his mug of freshly brewed coffee to spoon after spoon after spoon of sugar, with no indication of stopping, ever.
Taking into consideration the amount of time Rodney had obtained the coffee, the volume of sugar the spoon could hold (give or take a little for the bits that would inadvertently fall to the table no matter how steady one's hands were), and the rate of which Rodney's shovelling the sugar in, there must be at least a pound worth in the mug.
It was not the way to treat coffee, even the fairly low quality coffee in the SGC's mess hall.
John had never been one to stand by idly when there was something he could be doing, some action to be taken to prevent something clearly as wrong as this from happening.
"Rodney, what the hell do you think you're doing?"
The spoon stopped halfway between the sugar jar and coffee mug, and John breathe a silent sigh of relief.
"Having my coffee," Rodney enunciated each word as though speaking to a child, or an idiot. Knowing Rodney, they probably amount to the same thing. "And no, you can't have it. Go get your own. Do you have any idea how long has it been since I've had coffee?"
"Since Atlantis' one year supply ran out within three months of us arriving?"
"Exactly! So you can't have this, it's mine." John had to restrain himself from tackling Rodney to the ground and grabbing the spoon from him. At least he was stirring now and not shovelling more sugar into the mug.
"I don't think I'd touch that thing if you put a gun to my head." Okay, maybe if someone did put a gun to his head and demand that he drink it or have his brains blown into itsy bitsy bits, he'd drink it, but nothing short of that would make him touch that... that... stuff.
"Is there something wrong with it?" Hand stopping in mid stir, eyes darting back and forth between John and the coffee.
"Just how much sugar did you add?"
"The usual, why?" Rodney was starting to get suspicious.
"The usual? There must be a pound of sugar in there!" John pointed at the mug.
"Don't be ridiculous, Major –"
"Lieutenant Colonel," John corrected.
"The mug is in no way big enough to contain a pound of sugar, unless there's some sort of quantum phenomenon going on in it that I'm unaware of, which would just be impossible."
"That's not the point! You shouldn't be doing that to coffee!"
"Doing what?" Rodney looked as though he was trying to figure out if John had finally lost his grasp on reality.
"Adding so much sugar! It's like... like sacrilege!"
"Sacrilege?!" Disbelief, followed quickly by realisation. "Oh my God! You're one of those coffee snobs!"
"I am not!"
"You so are! I bet you've never set foot in Starbucks before, and if you did, it wasn't by choice." Rodney was wearing a 'go-ahead-prove-me-wrong-I-bet-you-can't-cos-I'm-RIGHT' smirk. John wanted more than anything to wipe that smirk off his face. He opened his mouth to tell Rodney just how wrong he was –
And shut it with a snap, almost biting his own tongue off. Damn it, did Rodney have to be right all the time?!
"Ha! I knew it! You and Dr. Jackson should get together and compare notes. He could give you a one-day lecture on the history of coffee and then you guys can spend the next week discussing the convenience of instant coffee versus the taste of Brazilian beans or something like that."
"I'm not a coffee snob!"
"Then give me a reason why I shouldn't drink this," Rodney gestured towards the still steaming mug, sitting innocently on the table, utterly unaware of the toxic contents in its belly.
"Other than the fact that it'll possibly put you into a diabetic coma?"
"Yes, other than that."
"Because... because coffee shouldn't be treated like this!"
"I'm sorry? Coffee shouldn't be treated like what?"
"Like this!" John knew he was gesturing wildly between the mug and the jar of sugar, but he just couldn't help it, and he really hated that smirk. "One or two sugars, three if you like it a bit sweeter, but no more than that. Hint of milk if you like that, but not a whole pound of sugar! You can't even taste the coffee!"
"Coffee. Snob." Rodney pronounced in triumph, and proceeded to take a gulp from the mug, much to John's horror. "God, this is so good." An expression of pure bliss, making John wince at the imaginary sweetness he could already taste.
"Now I know why you always looks like you're about to bounce off the wall." John muttered.
"Coffee. Sugar. Even better if you add chocolate to the mix. Starbucks is the greatest coffee store on the planet. We need to explore the option of starting up a chain in the Pegasus Galaxy."
It didn't matter that he could stare down an insane Genii commando, or bluff his way through a poker match that left no one on Atlantis willing to play with him anymore, John could not stop his expression of horror from showing.
"Coffee. S. N. O. B."
John really, really hated that look. "Shut up!"
"Oh, great way to win an argument there, Major. Very mature."
John didn't even bother correcting Rodney as he stalked out of the mess hall. He needed to erase the horrors he had just witnessed from his mind.
"Hey, where are you going?"
"To find some real coffee!"
Note: Inspired by serafina20 LJ post where she said: "I want someone real who takes their coffee like three milks, fourteen sugars."