Disclaimer - I do not own SGA nor any of its characters, this is for fun not profit.

Rating - T

Pairing - Ronon Dex/Orla Grant

Tag : When Ronon & Orla's world is delivered a blow by the IOA can Sheppard, Teyla, McKay and Woolsey help the lover's world recover?

A/N - A huge thank you to bailey1ak for your wonderful constant friendship and beta work. Thank you to Imbx for your help and patience.

This started as a piece of fluff and took off in many directions, I've come to the conclusion a short story is not something I'm able to write ! so I really hope you enjoy it.

I've indicated this is a Ronon & Sheppard story as despite Sheppard being present from the start he becomes heavily involved about a third of the story in.

Ronon palmed open the door to his and Orla's quarters his breathing returning to normal after his usual early morning run with Sheppard. As he stepped into the quarters closing the door after him he spotted Orla putting the finishing touches to the braid she'd woven her hair into.

Orla looked up smiling at Ronon's image, "Hey you, good run?" Orla asked drinking in the sight of her lover sweaty and slightly flushed from his run.

"Yeah 's good," Ronon mumbled as he ambled over to Orla, lacing his arms about her waist pulling her to him as his mouth descended onto her neck and started to trail gentle kisses down to the base of her throat.

Orla groaned with pleasure, did he have to make going to work so difficult, Orla thought. "Ronon, you're sweaty, go and have a shower," Orla tried to sound annoyed at Ronon's embrace.

"Come with me, let you wash my back," Ronon gruffly offered as he nuzzled into Orla's hair. He loved its softness and the smell of her shampoo, exotic fruits he'd only come to know once on Atlantis.

"No, I can't be late again this morning, now go shower and let's get some food," Orla turned in Ronon's arms pushing him toward the bathroom as he started to kiss her lips pleadingly. "Oh no you don't… go," Orla burst into laughter at the sight of Ronon pouting.

"Maybe I should find another woman who'll be happy to wash my back," Ronon pouted as he started pull at his shirt, stomping his way toward the shower.

"Okay love, but if you're gonna look for another woman it's only fair I get to check out some of those new Marines," Orla called out nonchalantly having a pretty good idea of the Satedan's response.

Orla heard the loud growl even before Ronon reappeared in their bedroom.

He strode over to her, bent down placing one arm behind her knees, the other about her waist and picked her up staring intently at her face Ronon rumbled, "I don't think so… you're my woman and I love you. Besides, kinda used to you now," Ronon guffawed as he tried to dodge the mock blows Orla was sending his way.

"Put me down and go get showered," Orla tried to sternly admonish Ronon who just walked into the bathroom ignoring everything Orla said and dumped her in the shower. He turned the faucet on watching the look of shock on Orla's face as her uniform became sodden.

"Want some company?" Ronon simply replied with a raised eyebrow followed by a toothy grin.

Ronon and Orla finally entered the mess hall. If they were quick they'd get ten minutes to eat something. They chose their breakfasts and walked over to the table occupied by some of their friends.

"Hey, wondering where you two got to," Sheppard commented draining his coffee and placing it on the tray.

"Orla had a little trouble with the shower," Ronon grinned at Orla who was shaking her head.

"Didn't have time to dry your hair?" Sheppard smirked earning a sharp kick to his shins from Teyla. "Ow," Sheppard cried out staring at a smiling Athosian.

"Didn't have time to dry it and eat, no Colonel," Orla simply put trying not to blush at the Colonel's implication.

"Make sure you dry it before you get in the lab Orla, don't want dripping water in the systems," McKay answered looking at Orla.

"So, new Marines this morning?" Sheppard quizzed Ronon his shin still smarting from the sudden impact with Teyla's small foot. Sheppard suddenly felt glad she'd never taken to wearing Atlantis boots.

"Yeah, first meeting with them since the Daedalus dropped them here on its last run," Ronon grinned as he tore into his toast.

"Ronon try not to send them all to Dr. Beckett," Teyla smiled at the giant of a man at her side.

"Depends," Ronon replied attacking his other piece of toast.

"On what? Or shouldn't I ask?" McKay inquired as he gave the last of his breakfast equal vigor.

"On how stupid and cocky they are," Ronon added reaching for his tea.

"They get briefed and some training at the SGC about the Pegasus galaxy, but in their journey over here and in the excitement of initially being on Atlantis they seem to think they know everything about Wraith and all the rest of the bad guys out for our blood. When they get like that Ronon plays with them, shows them what they're up against. Works all the time," Sheppard looked at the Satedan and they both broke into grins that wouldn't have been out of place on a gang of kids plotting away in their tree house.

"You're a pair of thugs," McKay exclaimed, looking at both men and shaking his head.

A few hours later in the main laboratory Orla was working on some power fluctuations within the north pier when she heard her boss shout out in frustration.

"Oh wonderful, just wonderful. Like I don't have anything else to do this afternoon." McKay barked at the tablet in his hands.

"Dr. McKay? You okay?" Orla asked gently hoping not to trigger a rant at her expense.

"What? Oh Woolsey thinks the senior staff should have another meeting this afternoon, he thinks one a week in light of everything that's happened recently isn't enough. That maybe so for someone who just pushes a pen about all day, but to some of us that actually earn our salaries it's just another inconvenience," Rodney ranted at Orla who looked decided grateful it wasn't her who'd caused the ranting.

Orla's own tablet bleeped indicating an email. She checked who it could be, Ronon would be hitting Marines, Laura was off world with Major Lorne, Dr. Zelenka and Lieutenant Wilkinson. Teyla would just find her and Jennifer was on the late shift so she should be sleeping.

Orla stared at the email, biting her lip she didn't know whether to ignore the feeling of dread filling her or to just do the sensible thing and see what Mr. Woolsey wanted with her. Her finger hovered over the inbox, she chided herself for being an idiot and opened the inbox selecting Woolsey's email.

To : Dr. Orla Grant

From : Mr. Richard Woolsey

Date : 10th September

Dear Dr. Grant,

Please make an appointment to see me this morning. I have a staff meeting scheduled for this afternoon and would therefore appreciate your swift response.

I would for now appreciate it if you told nobody but your immediate boss, Dr. McKay, that your presence is required in my office.

I would like to discuss the recent reviews.


R. Woolsey.

Orla was shocked, he wanted to see her this morning and it wouldn't wait. She swallowed the dread that had hung about to poke her in the gut as she knew it would.

"Dr. McKay? I've been asked to go and see Mr. Woolsey something about our reviews. He's asked me to go before your meeting this afternoon. I was thinking I'd better go now then I can come back and start that diagnostic while you're in the meeting," Orla muttered her mind trying to think what Woolsey wanted to discuss.

"What do you mean talk about your review, yours was good… well… by my standards," McKay was feeling nervous, he hadn't written anything derogatory about the woman, she was a good scientist, a friend and she was Ronon's girlfriend.

"I don't know Dr. McKay, here, you can read his email," Orla offered as she extended the tablet out to Rodney.

Rodney read the email handed back the tablet and said, "You'd better get going."

Orla headed toward the control room and Mr. Woolsey's office her hands suddenly feeling sweaty with nerves. This was ridiculous she was a grown woman and not outside the headmaster's office, so why did she feel she was. Orla knocked on the arch to the office waiting for the man to acknowledge her.

Richard Woolsey looked up and seeing Orla he smiled, "Dr. Grant, thank you for coming, Please come in, can you shut the door?" Woolsey watched as Orla shut the door before he stood and indicated for her to take a seat.

"This is very uncomfortable for me Dr. Grant, I hope you realize that," Woolsey waited to see her response. "I want to keep this conversation between us. I know your first instinct will be to go to Ronon; I'm asking you to not say anything even to Ronon. Not yet, please," Woolsey pleaded looking miserable.

Orla started to feel her unease turn to panic, "All due respect Mr. Woolsey, how do you expect me to keep whatever this is a secret from Ronon? Why should I? Ronon and I don't keep secrets from each other and I can guarantee you he'll know something's wrong if it's as bad as you're making me feel," Orla wrung her hands in her lap trying hard to not flee and find Ronon.

"I received a message from the IOA this morning after they'd received the reviews a few days ago. It seems they've been in touch with Dr. Jacobs about the recent incidents you've been unfortunately caught up in. After they've apparently discussed members of this expedition behind my back, it seems… the IOA have decided to recall you to Earth for a "sabbatical" to asses if you should return to Atlantis." Woolsey immediately jumped to his feet coming to the side of Orla, the shock evident in her face.

Orla felt she'd been hit by… she had no clue, she was speechless. She didn't know whether to be sick or cry, in fact she felt like doing both. Orla struggled to look at Woolsey and say anything; she just slowly shook her head in denial.

"Wh...at …I don't… under… stand," Orla stuttered tears falling as she tried to comprehend what the news meant, Ronon, oh my god she may never see him again.

"How'd… you… expect me… to say… nothing?" Orla couldn't stop the flow of tears the thought of not seeing Ronon again was the only thing she could think of and to not see him again would kill her as surely as a knife to her heart.

"Dr. Grant, here," Woolsey handed a box of tissues to the crying woman, he desperately wanted to calm her but didn't know how to. He gently patted Orla's shoulder his hand not lingering for fear he'd offend.

"I'm asking you to please say nothing because I know when this gets out; the proverbial will hit the fan. Ronon will well… be Ronon. I want to try to rectify this myself. I believe in your abilities as does Dr. McKay and Colonel Sheppard." Woolsey considered his words carefully before carrying on.

"As for Ronon he's never been happier, which is good news for everyone else. I also know that you both love each other very much. You've been through a great deal and I don't want to see you split apart," Woolsey sighed, he'd hated the situation. Only now was he starting to understand how Elizabeth Weir had felt about the "suits" at Stargate Command.

"Can you give me twenty four hours to try to solve this before letting Ronon and Colonel Sheppard in on this?" Woolsey knew he sounded desperate and in a way he was. He wanted to solve this problem in the hope that everyone would realize his loyalty truly did belong to Atlantis and her family.

"I'll try… can't promise… anything," Orla tried reigning in her emotions; she couldn't walk about Atlantis like this and not expect Ronon to hear about it.

"That's all I ask Dr. Grant, I'm sorry to have had to give you such unfair news," Woolsey for once wished he had Teyla's or even Colonel Sheppard's people skills.

"Call me Orla, Mr. Woolsey, please," Orla smiled sadly at her boss getting herself together bit by bit, she was numb she just wanted to go and hide.

"I'll try… Orla but I'm not used to such informality," Woolsey smiled getting to his feet. "I know lying to Ronon is a lot to ask but I'm asking for his sake as well as my own," Woolsey fiddled with his glasses, cleaning them as he tended when stressed these days.

"I won't promise, but I'll try, please let me know when you know anything. When do the IOA want me back on Earth?" Orla had dreaded asking the question but she needed to know.

"They want you on the Daedalus heading for Earth within the week. The Daedalus is due in two days, it will have a turn around of a further two days before it heads back to Earth," Woolsey managed to stun Orla once again, as he watched her hand come up to catch the sob trying to escape.

TBC... Please review