The Clock Struck One

Radek frowned at the computer screen, then rubbed his eyes. Still blurry. He removed his glasses again, tried to find a clean spot on his shirt and finally had to use his sleeve to wipe them on. He put his glasses back and blinked again. Thought very hard about focusing.

Still blurry. He muttered under his breath. This was not good. He *felt* awake enough to keep working. His brain was still able to process what he was working on. His fingers could still type. But if his eyes were too tired to focus it would be very difficult to keep working.

Perhaps he could get the computer to speak the text aloud. He remembered where on the server the software was -- but how he would install it on his laptop when he couldn't see well enough to type mathematical equations much less complicated things like "cp atlspkV2 home/phys/zelenka/stuffineed"?

He sat up straight as he smelled John; a moment later he was at the doorway. Radek turned his head and noted that John was slightly blurry around the edges as well. Enough that he couldn't make out John's expression -- but he didn't really need to.

"I can see that you're going to be the tricky one," John said, the sarcasm in his voice heavy enough to almost mask the amusement.

Radek frowned, confused. "What did I do?"

John didn't answer, but he came forward, took Radek's arm and pulled. Radek stumbled, got one foot tangled in the stool he'd been sitting on and ended up plastered fully against his herd stallion.

"Do you know what time it is?" John asked, not bothering to push Radek away.

Radek thought about it. The last time he'd looked at the clock it had said 1.30 in the morning. That had been...a while ago. "Two thirty?" he guessed, still half-leaning against John.

"Not even close." John grinned and shook his head. "For normal people, it's time to get up. For scientists, apparently it's time for bed. Come on." He stepped back and Radek nearly fell forward as the brace moved away. But he caught himself and let John pull him towards the door.

"It's three thirty?" Radek guessed.

John gave him a distinctly amused look. "It's five thirty. I got Dr. Raddisson to bed an hour ago. Found Dr. Caternaus twenty minutes after that. I just got back from putting Rodney to bed. Now you. I'm going to have to ask Elizabeth to issue a curfew, aren't I?"

Radek shook his head. "We will only work in our quarters. Laptops, portable." He yawned, long and hard, and suddenly felt perhaps too bone-tired to walk further. He leaned sideways, against John, and wondered why the sensation felt so familiar.

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