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22 August 2010 @ 07:52 am
Tiny Piece of Fluff  
Title: Terms of Endearment
Specs: Babylon 5, John/Delenn, S5, 1100 words
Rating: PG-13 for brief language and implied sexytimes
Warning: The last line of this is the cheesiest thing I've ever written.  I can't even.  If anyone has a suggestion as to how to convey the same idea without CHEEEEESE, please let me know.

"Honey, can you hand me that?"  Sheridan didn't look up from his nightly paperwork and pointed vaguely in the direction of the last of the juice on the counter.  Delenn was assembling her lunch for the next day, and as always, she offered to make him some as well, but he didn't like that Minbari pod whatever she ate all the time.  It was okay, but he'd rather have a quick sandwich if he had the choice.  Sheridan got distracted for a minute, thinking about some of his favorite sandwiches - there was a little stall in Red Sector that made Philly cheesesteaks that were almost as good as the real thing, he hadn't been there in weeks - when he realized that Delenn was still looking around the kitchenette.

"It's right there," he said, putting his pen down and looking at her.  She had her hands on her hips, making another visual sweep.  "There."  She looked to where he was pointing, right at the jug, and she had the damnedest blank look on her face.  Sheridan tried not to laugh, and finally rose half out of his chair, leaned over to snag it himself.  "Do we need to schedule an eye exam for you in Medlab?"

"I thought you asked me for honey," Delenn replied, giving him the eye.

"What?"  And then he replayed what he'd said, and this time couldn't help the laugh that spilled out.  He stood to join her.  "No.  I called you 'honey.'"


"It's an endearment.  It's something you call someone you love."

"Honey is a sugary substance made from flower pollen.  It is secreted by bees."

Sheridan wrapped his arms around her waist, gave her a lingering kiss.  "True.  It's also very sweet."  He kissed her again, thinking that sometimes she tasted a little like honey, if honey were the best-fucking-tasting thing in the universe, and then he leaned back.  He expected to see her amused little smile, or a light blush, or maybe, if he was very lucky, her bedroom eyes.  He did not expect to see that frown she wore sometimes when he said something he knew she would classify as Buffoonish Human Man Nonsense; her lips slightly pursed, a vague line between her brows.


"That is my name."  Ah... She pulled gently out of his arms, eyes on his the whole time, and they were saying: you will accept this, John, and I will not hear another word about it.

He'd see about that.


Delenn was in bed, having pulled on one of her silky nightgowns, and Sheridan wondered if that meant she was ready to sleep, or if she wanted him to take it off.  He preferred the latter, and knew he shouldn't press his luck, but she needed to know that the game was on.  If he waited too long, she might just think he'd forgotten and slipped.  He didn't want there to be any ambiguity.

"I'll be in in a second, babe," he called out from the bathroom, spitting toothpaste into the sink.  Silence from the bedroom; that wasn't a good sign.  Sheridan smiled at his own smile in the mirror.  He rinsed, turned off the light, and came out to join her.  She was just marking her place in her book.

"I do not know what you were planning, but there are no infants in this room."  She rolled over on her side, hiked up her blankets, and waved off her lamp.

In the morning, while they dressed: "So, do you have a busy day planned for today, sweetheart?"

"The heart is an internal organ.  It cannot be sweet."

"Yours is."

"Do not wrinkle my robes."

That afternoon, just before the Council meeting was about to start: "Muffin, can you pass me that paper?"

"I was responsible and made my lunch last night.  I do not require a pastry to keep me satisfied until dinner."

That night, in bed: "Oh, right there.  Right there.  Don't stop, darling, don't stop."

She stopped.  Propped her chin up on his thigh.  Sheridan looked at her with the saddest puppy-dog eyes he could muster, but she just looked up at him, level as can be.

"What do you say?"

"Please don't stop?"  The barest shake of her head.  Fine, time out.

"Don't stop...Delenn."  Damn it, once she was done, he was going to wipe that smug little smile off her face.  Then she started again, and oh, her tongue.  Sheridan wondered if he could write a thank-you note to the entire goddamned planet of Minbar.

Two days later, watching ISN: "I missed seeing you the last couple days.  I'll be so glad when this mess with the telepaths is straightened out."  She nodded, tucked her head more securely under his chin.  He sniffed her hair - mmm, melons - and decided it was time.  "Maybe we could schedule an hour or two the next few days to ourselves.  What do you say, pumpkin?"

"Program off.  Computer, display definition and picture of 'pumpkin.'"  Sheridan kept the chuckle locked inside, bit the inside of his cheek to keep from grinning.  If she knew how much fun he was having with this, she'd quit playing along.  He had a hard time staying impassive once her requested information came up on the screen. 

"John, I can perhaps understand some of the other words you have called me the last few days, but I do not know why you thought I would want to be called a gourd."

"Pumpkins are cute."

"I am looking at a picture of one right now."

"You don't think it's cute?"

"It is short, fat and orange."  That did it; he threw his head back and laughed, squeezing her close.  She struggled out of his arms, and he quieted down in a hurry.  He didn't want to have a fight.  "Delenn, honey..."  Damn it!  That one had just slipped out.  He looked up at her, wary, and her expression was inscrutable.  Then she leaned down and kissed him hard, the kind of bruising kiss that made more than his hair stand on end.

"I will forgive you, if you can manage to do anything of interest in here."  Then she went into the bedroom, hips swaying side to side, one last sultry look over her shoulder.

Afterwards: "I love you."

Delenn snuggled closer, nuzzling her nose into his chest.  Then she whispered, so low he could barely hear it, "You can call me 'honey' if you want to."  Sheridan shook his head, rolled them over onto their sides, kissed her like it was the first time.

"Lots of men get to call their wives 'honey.'  I'm the only one who gets to call his wife 'Delenn.'"
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nhpw: Season5nhpw on August 22nd, 2010 01:51 pm (UTC)

RE: Bafoonish Human Man Nonsense. I LOL'd, and then I thought, geez. I am Human, and I still think this phrase sometimes fits my other half's behavior. And yes, John could be pretty dense sometimes. Very appropriate.

I love little domestic scenes like how you started this out. Speaking of endearments, there is something very endearing about those.

"Pumpkins are cute."

"I am looking at a picture of one right now."

"You don't think it's cute?"

"It is short, fat and orange."

That did it for me, right there. That little bit of dialogue. So cute. So LOL-worthy.

I think you win the Awesomeness Award today, because you just managed to write one fic that covers both G-rated oral sex and the "endearments" subject.

OK, yes. That last line is full of cheese. But I'm trying to come up with something better for you and I just can't. I think the rest of the fic makes up for it.
Shannon: brangelinakungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 02:10 pm (UTC)
I've decided that you can't actually write G-rated oral sex. Cock-in-mouth = not G.

You know, maybe it's because we didn't see many domestic bliss scenes between them on the show that I enjoy them in fic, when I usually don't go for that kind of thing. And one of the few we did get, it was about Sheridan's stupid socks. WTF, JMS.
nhpw: sheridanconfusednhpw on August 22nd, 2010 02:40 pm (UTC)

I love how the fandom in general has this love-hate relationship with JMS. It's something like, "You are a genius. And kind of a douche. We will watch B5 because it is AWESOME, but we will be mad at you for a number of things until you die or write the movie."
Shannon: b5 londo bwkungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 02:58 pm (UTC)
I generally don't have any kind of problem with other showrunners, even when they make decisions I don't agree with; I think part of my problem with JMS is that his show had problems just like every other show, but he either doesn't acknowledge them or actually says they aren't problems. And I know he's occasionally pointed out episodes like Grey 17 and Infection as ones that didn't work - although, I notice he often adds that he was ON DEATH'S DOOR while writing them, as though that were the only reason.

And it's like, dude. You wrote almost the entire show. It's fucking amazing. ILU 4-EVA. But it's okay if you want to say that you didn't have it 100% planned out, or that this particular thing didn't work, etc. Really, the only thing he's consistent about in that regard is writing romantic scenes, and I always got the impression it was coming from a "I am such a hardcore SF writer I just cannot get into sweet, sweet keeses scenes."

Eh, it's not a big deal. I don't think it's love-hate as much as it's not LOVE 24/7 YEAH! which, you know, no one is ever going to get. Which is why I'm very fond of showrunners like BSG's Ron Moore, who is very humble and open about when things didn't work and doesn't blame anyone but himself.

This was probably a longer reply than you were anticipating. Heh.
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Shannon: bsg exodus chiefkungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 05:07 pm (UTC)
Right! I mean, I had to watch all those guys rolling around in bed; why not Sheridan?


Yeah, I think most fans tend to have their gripes with whatever show they're watching, but the love usually far outweighs the gripes. JMS, at least from what I've seen reading his online correspondence from Lurker's Guide, sometimes didn't understand that.

He definitely always wanted the last word, that's for sure.

(I love that icon. Watching the two models go at it in the series finale was ~amazing.)
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Shannonkungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 06:06 pm (UTC)
I know someone's linked me to those before but I don't remember where they are.
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Shannon: bsg chief anders helokungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 07:18 pm (UTC)
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Shannon: b5 darkness and lightkungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 04:32 pm (UTC)
Thanks! Seriously, though, what is it with food names? I actually think my favorite endearment is "monkey," but that usually only works with toddler-age kids.

I actually think JMS does better with the romance scenes than he gives himself credit for, to be honest; there's a few clunker lines here and there, but most of his scenes worked for me. I had more complaints about romantic scenes I wanted to see that didn't exist at all.
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Shannon: fine eyeskungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 06:07 pm (UTC)
UGH, LISE. Don't even get me started. I was so over Garibaldi by the end of S4, and then Lise showed up and I ended up FFing a lot of his scenes in S5 because I could not deal.

Yeah, it does kind of ruin John and Delenn's ~*~perfect fated love~*~ that he was already on his third marriage by her.
Anne Marieindigoviolet on August 22nd, 2010 07:26 pm (UTC)
That was sweet. :) The last line's cheesy, sure, but it works. It don't need changin'

And re@ JMS - I have to agree with ufgator above - 12-year-old is about right. Sometimes it seems as though he's thinking 'ewww, girly love scene' and has to put some kind of childish joke in there to balance out the Serious Romance. Like the Shan Fal, and G'Kar's eye. Which might have been funny in a different context, but these are important scenes for these characters. Sometimes you need to play it straight otherwise it comes across as awkward and inappropriate, and you end up thinking is this the same guy who wrote Sleeping in Light?

The boy's inconsistent, that's his trouble. When he's good he's very very good... but yeah.
Anne Marieindigoviolet on August 22nd, 2010 07:38 pm (UTC)
Forgot to add about the fic: I love that it's another little power struggle between them. I'd swear she doesn't really mind the nicknames that much, she's just doing it to wind him up.
Shannon: pd emerson chuckkungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 07:48 pm (UTC)
That's my theory, too. I think as much as Sheridan enjoyed messing with her, she enjoys messing with him right back. Then again, I think half the time she pretends she doesn't know a word on the show she's doing it on purpose. She's a big ol' flirt.
Shannon: pd girl named chuckkungfuwaynewho on August 22nd, 2010 07:47 pm (UTC)
G'Kar's eye really bothered me. We didn't get to see the wedding, and then the one shot we get of the honeymoon ends up being this gross joke. (And I'm sorry, someone peeking in on the newlyweds first night together as a married couple will never be funny to me; ugh.) I wasn't asking for, like, a whole Very Special Episode or anything like that, but I couldn't have had at least one indication other than "woohoo!" that those two ever had sex?
nhpwnhpw on August 23rd, 2010 07:10 pm (UTC)
I am coming to this late, but whatever.

Can we talk about, "Woohoo!" for a second?

It is funny coming out of Lennier's mouth. Sure. Fine. Comedic value for implied sexytimes, whatever. But I really don't see Sheridan saying it. I just don't. I can't. He might as well say, "Ohmygosh BOOBIES!"

(Actually, that might have been funnier, to hear Lennier ask him, "Boobies?")

Anyway. I just figure that a sexually experienced man in his 40s with a lot of respect for the woman he's with AND WHO KNOWS THAT OTHER PEOPLE ARE LISTENING would probably, you know, not say "woohoo." *pause* I mostly imagine Sheridan as an incoherent grunter.


Also, I used to play The Sims, and "woohoo" with a big smiling purple heart was Sims Talk for sex. So now when I watch that scene all I picture is that big stupid smiling purple heart, followed by John and Delenn disappearing under the covers and moving around as a big amorphous blob while fireworks shoot off over the bed.
Shannonkungfuwaynewho on August 23rd, 2010 08:02 pm (UTC)
THANK YOU. One of the first comments I made on the B5_revisted comm was about how much I hated the "woohoo," and I was kinda told that it was funny and that undercutting serious emotional stuff was great and I should like it. In so many words.

I HATE THE WOOHOO. Completely independent of anything else it merits at most a vague twitch of one corner of the mouth. It functioning as the punchline to these two people FINALLY consummating their relationship, and what you said about Sheridan being, you know, a grown man who's presumably had sex before, and it just kills me. In a bad way.

I mostly imagine Sheridan as an incoherent grunter. First of all, I'll be in my bunk. SECOND OF ALL, STOP TRYING TO DISTRACT ME, um, mayhap there should be a fic from Lennier's POV during the shan'fal, just him trying to interpret all the noises he's hearing. IDK.
nhpw: sdlooknhpw on August 23rd, 2010 08:39 pm (UTC)
You are the second person to suggest that Lennier fic. I am not going to do it. Two reasons why not:

1) I find the "people in the next room" thing creepy in the same way that G'Kar's eye in their room on the wedding night is creepy. It's a private moment. Assuming it's the BIG FIRST TIME OMG - dude. Nobody should be party to that.

and 2) I already wrote a Shan'Fal fic, and I dun wanna do another one.

So if you want it written, you're going to have to do it yourself. Go for it. :)
Shannonkungfuwaynewho on August 23rd, 2010 08:54 pm (UTC)
HAHA I'm not asking you to write it. I would have straight up said it, heh. I was more testing the waters to see if it would be an interesting fic.

Yeah, I really dislike everyone outside listening. I hope they fooled around before then, because otherwise, poor, poor Sheridan. I mean, seriously. Which is why, as much as it pains me to think that they actually waited until their wedding night (are they an adorable sitcom couple from the 80s?), I would rather that than think they had sex for the first time with fucking Lennier ten feet away. Christ.
nhpw: sheridanconfusednhpw on August 23rd, 2010 11:14 pm (UTC)
I'm so torn. It was either Lennier or it was G'Kar. I'm not sure how I'd prefer it. At least G'Kar would be enjoying the show and not stewing on it.

I feel like in connecting these two dots, we have inadvertently uncovered something about JMS's personal preferences that we ought not to know.

And now we will all have nightmares for a week. You're welcome.
Shannon: bsg tigh knowskungfuwaynewho on August 23rd, 2010 11:30 pm (UTC)
UGH! I hadn't ever thought of it that way! Gross. I need to wash my brain.

If I have to pick one, I pick G'Kar; they probably didn't know the eyeball was there, and yeah, at least he wouldn't have been dumping bad vibes into the air.

I'm totes gonna write the Lennier fic; I thought of a ~punchline so that will be fun.
mac_beth13mac_beth13 on August 22nd, 2010 11:37 pm (UTC)
Oh-my-gosh this is so abso-fraggin-lutely cute! I love words games espeacially with John and Delenn. Sometimes she gets it, sometimes she doesn't and sometimes she pretends she doesn't get it on purpose for desired effect.

PG rated B.J. was very cleverly written, "She stopped. Propped her chin up on his thigh." -reader goes 'what? Oh. Ooh!' ;)
Favourite line:"John, I can perhaps understand some of the other words you have called me the last few days, but I do not know why you thought I would want to be called a gourd."
The last line is kinda gouda but it's a fluffy cheese-ball, it ends the story nicely and I can't think of how else to phrase the sentiment any better. >^_^<
Shannonkungfuwaynewho on August 23rd, 2010 12:25 am (UTC)
Thank you! Yeah, I was like, here we all are, giving JMS shit for writing cutesy-pie romantic scenes with J/D, and I can't write anything other than the cheesiest line in the world.

I will never get tired of Delenn being confused, genuinely or not, by the English language. It's definitely one of my B5 fic kinks, that's for sure.