One sided John/AI!Rodney
What if Weir wasn't the one to survive the first version of the expedition?
[flirting with holograms]
Rodney looked young today. Not super young, like the pre-teen that sometimes appeared when they talked about movies, music and, inexplicably, nuclear weapons, but 20-ish, just the good side of jailbait. John thought it was an excellent look on him, and told him so with a not-quite-leer.
"Very funny, Major." The young Rodney had the same sneer as the old one, or the biological one for that matter. Even the grotesque image that had first greeted the expedition, which Heightmeyer called a 'self image homunculus' and thought was fascinating, had the sneer. "If you could be serious for a moment, we need to discuss how to best find a hibernating Hive, and the composition of the scouting party."
"Hey, I was being serious, you were a hottie at this age. You must have gotten more coeds than you knew what to do with."
The image shifted to the graying man with a slight stoop to his shoulders who showed up to most staff meetings. "When I was that age, I was teaching the coeds, and, no, I really didn't know what to do when one propositioned me. Well, if she was in my class, I could insult her morals and intellect, but trying to tell random girls that my contract forbid me to buy them a drink led to so many awkward conversations, I just started telling them I was gay."
"Yeah, what did you tell the guys?"
"That I was straight, of course."
John leaned over and ran his hand just above the surface of the hologram's arm. "So what are you going to tell me?"
The arm shortened and a large hand with freakishly long fingers suddenly grasped his. He tried not to flinch back from a face almost entirely made up of mouth and giant eyes so blue that they glowed, but the Escher-like way the features fit together was even more disturbing when it spoke. "I'll tell you to try dating within your own species, Sheppard."
The homunculus let go and turned away to organize some data pads on the table, tiny legs somehow more there as it paced. John swallowed hard as he forced himself to look at the form his friend preferred for any physical actions. "You're human too, Rodney."
"I'm a 3000 year old AI based on the mental imprint of a man who spent 3000 years prior to that in a virtual learning environment and was smarter than most of the galaxy to start with. I have as much in common with you as that naked alien on the Daedalus you keep freaking out about." Before he could object, the hologram barreled on. "And all the things I do have in common with you are shared by a certain member of the expedition who, if my memories are correct, thinks you are fairly attractive and is, oh yeah, a physical person!"
"McKay's alright, but I don't like him the same way I like you." He didn't know why Rodney refused to see that. "You're cool, okay? You're interesting and funny and almost nice, and-"
"Safe." A glare that actually had light beams shooting out of it was pretty cool. "I'm the ultimate safe gay crush, even more than I was for the undergraduates I advised. Honestly, it's a little insulting."
John rubbed his neck and held back an instinctive denial. "Fine, maybe part of the appeal in flirting with you is that nothing can really happen, but I do like you."
Rodney sighed and relaxed into its usual float. "I like you too, John, especially since you're one of the only ones around here who thinks of me as a person. But I think I'm gonna start being myself around you, because you need to remember that I'm not just a human being stored in the mainframe - this," and its twirling hand managed to fully circle the rest of it, "is me now."
He managed a smirk. "At least you know I don't just want you for your body."
Seeing the homunculus's mouth eclipse its entire head gave John a warm glow of knowing he didn't have the most embarrassing laugh in the room anymore. "You're a nut. Come on, Major, let's go see my bio-brother and talk hiveships."
"You know he calls you 'the McA.I.' right?"
"Yeah, I came up with that one too, when I was programming the interface. I like it."
"Guess those 6000 years weren't spent improving your sense of humor, huh?"
A pointy elbow (which he could have sworn didn't exist a minute ago) poked his ribs as they headed down the hall. "Just as well or I wouldn't be your friend."
"Yeah." He smiled softly. "Just as well."
Note : If Rodney was the one who had 10,000 years to kill on Atlantis, he would totally find a way to upload himself to the computer and spend the time designing alternate power sources to preserve the ZPMs and improving the city.
Note the Second : A cortical homunculus is an image of a person based on how much space our sensory and/or motor cortex devotes to different body parts. They're funky, google it. Rodney's 'natural' form is a combination of this with the features he keeps in the back of his mind when talking to others (hence very large eyes.) Really, this is what astral forms or souls should look like, imo, not a fully proportional and accurate copy of your body.