The Broken Road

Ronon knew that the new doctor was hiding something. He was determined to find out the whole story. He must gain her trust and to do that he realized he had to trust her. Dr. Keller could not keep herself from staring at the handsome man. But from her past experience she was not going down that broken road ever again!

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5. Chapter 5

Elizabeth Weir, Colonel Sheppard, Teyla, Dr. Beckett and Rodney McKay were in the conference room waiting to start their meeting before the Daedalus teleported the new personnel and supplies down to Atlantis.

Ronon was late - which wasn't like him. He was military - always punctual. John tried contacting him several times on the radio, but no response. Being on base, he normally did not wear the ear piece as often as he should. Sheppard was going to have to talk to him about that – again.

"Well, let's get started." Elizabeth began, "Colonel you can fill Ronon in when you see him."

John nodded and made a mental note to find out what was up with the big guy lately. He did not seem himself. Ronon seemed distracted and being distracted was dangerous when it came to the safety of the SGA teams.

"We are expecting new recruits as you all know." Elizabeth began. "We are also expecting a new doctor to come aboard!" Elizabeth placed her hands upon a file that was lying on the table in front of her. She continued, "Her name is Dr. Jennifer Keller. She comes highly recommended. She beat out over a thousand applicants for this position!"

"Very impressive!" John voiced, nodding his head.

"I cannot wait to meet her!" Teyla said.

"Really? A thousand?" Rodney said arrogantly. "That's good and all….but please, I once beat out nearly five thousand applicants for a physics grant pertaining to..."

"Rodney!" Elizabeth interrupted.

"What? I'm just saying one thousand applicants isn't that big of a deal. Doesn't make her a genius or anything like that!" He pouted.

"Actually it does!" Elizabeth informed him. "She graduated top of her class from medical school at age 26, had several articles published in major medical journals and she has worked in one of the top military hospitals in the country. I'd say she's right up there with you Rodney!" Elizabeth smiled at the scientist.

Rodney opened his mouth to argue the point, when Beckett said in his lilting voice, "I canna wait 'til she gets here. I could really use the help. We're understaffed, what with Drs. Ramsey and Beggs heading back to earth!" Looking at his colleagues he continued, "I read o'er her credentials, she has impeccable references. She'll be a welcomed addition to the team!"

"Then let's make her welcome!" Elizabeth said.

Everyone was leaving when she asked Dr. Beckett to stay. Elizabeth needed to talk to him.

"Yes, 'Lizabeth what can I do fer ya?"

Handing him a file she said, "You need to read this."

"What is it?" Carson asked while taking the file folder.

"Dr. Keller's personnel file. You'll find it interesting and very disturbing!" They both sat back down.

With a puzzled look on his face Beckett flipped through the thin file. It did not take him long to understand why this was her first assignment. "Jesus, Mary and Joseph! The poor lass!" Handing the file back to Elizabeth, Beckett assured her that he would take care of her. "Dunna worry! I'll take good care of the wee lassie! A new beginning is what she needs. A fresh start!" He got up to go.

"Carson." Beckett turned back around. "This stays between you and me. If Jennifer wants to tell her story, then that will be up to her. Understood?"

"Oh aye! Completely!" Beckett left to join the rest of the group down stairs.

Ronon had been up hours before the dawn. He had been awakened from a sound sleep by a dream. A dream that somehow, he felt, was of great importance. However, the memory of the vision eluded him. The remnant shadows danced in and out of his subconscious until the tiniest whisper of the dream evaporated like a morning mist.

He had gotten up and went for a run; trying to shake the feeling of concern – of urgency. He had passed the gym; stopped to spar with a couple of Marines and lost track of time.

When he realized that he was late for the morning meeting, a Marine got in a lucky hit with a bantos rod across Ronon's face. The soldier turned pale because he was sure that he was a dead man. No one drew blood from Ronon Dex and lived to tell about it! Ronon assured him that it was okay; that it was his fault for not paying attention. The Marine sighed in relief – he got to live another day!

Leaving the gym, Ronon ran down the hallway towards the Gate room. Everyone knew to get out of his way or get plowed down when he was in such a hurry. The gash across his left eyebrow was deep and hurt like hell but he did not care. He'd have it looked at afterwards.

By the time Ronon made his way to the Gate room, three groups of recruits had already been ushered through for processing. Everyone was waiting on the fourth and final group.

"Sorry I'm late!" he mumbled an apology to Sheppard.

Colonel Sheppard made a face seeing the gash and asked, "What happen to you Chewy? Not watching where you were going again?"

Ronon glared at Sheppard.

"It would appear he was not paying attention - again" Teyla chimed in.

Ronon snorted at Teyla but did not say a word. She had been right though. He had been distracted by that damn dream. The emotion he felt earlier when he awoke was still with him. It wasn't a feeling of foreboding but more like anticipation – of what though?

Sheppard edged over to stand next to Ronon and spoke in a hushed tone. "You okay?"

Frowning – which caused the cut above his eye to start bleeding a bit – Ronon answered, "Yeah why?" He felt a trickle of blood run down close to the corner of his eye. He swiped his hand over it; wiping it away.

"'Cause you're never late and what's up with the …." John pointed at the gash on Ronon's forehead, "You don't ever get walloped that badly by anyone except maybe Teyla" The gash over his eye made him look more intimidating, John thought.

"I'm fine" was all Ronon said. With that look on his face he was not going to elaborate any further. John would try again later.

"Colonel the last of the recruits, along with the new doctor, are next to teleport down." announced the control room tech.

Sheppard nodded his head, "Proceed."

There were times when Ronon liked to intimidate – okay scare the crap out of – the new recruits right when they materialized into the gate room. He thought it was good training for them to expect the unexpected. Besides John did not see any harm in a little hazing! Nobody ever got hurt. Furthermore, it was freakin' hilarious! There had been a few times that a couple recruits fainted dead away!

And so Ronon stood near where one of the Marines was going to appear – giving his best Ronon Death Stare and this time with a little blood mixed in for good measure.

Jennifer was on the ship one minute – nervous as hell – and the next she was standing in front of a wall of pure solid muscle no more than a foot from her. Slowly raising her head she took note of the man. She was certain that she was face-to-face with a Greek god or something! Men that looked like him were only in cheap dime store romance novels or on the cover of GQ!

He radiated lethal power. He had a tan body honed by discipline – broad chest and shoulders; well defined arms. The male specimen possessed strong features. His dreadlocks were tied back out of his face enhancing his rugged and masculine jaw which was covered with a dark mustache and goatee. His cheeks were clean shaven though. The beard gave him a devilish look she thought.

Did the temperature in the room go up a few hundred degrees? Jen was blushing because she was openly staring at the most handsome man she had ever seen – except for that God awful scowl he had on his face.

He towered over her by nearly a foot. His scorching green eyes bore into hers. The look he gave her was stern and hard. Her heart sank! The look he was giving her reminded her of Brian! Leave one and run across another - in another galaxy no less! When would her luck change for the better?!

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