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Title: The First Year
By Atri/ Chiara Crawford



CATEGORY: H/C, introspection, drama

ARCHIVES: ff.net, Command Dynamics

SPOILERS: Season One: The Defiant One

SUMMARY: Life goes on.

DISCLAIMER: I do not own Stargate: Atlantis.
I have written this story for entertainment purposes only and no money whatsoever has exchanged hands. No copyright infringement is intended. The original characters, situations, and story are the property of the author(s).

In memoriam

John leans against the doorway, looking at the frantic motions of his friend. The lab is in its usual state of disarray: empty cups of coffee scattered on the various tables, plates with leftover food set beside them. Amongst this chaos the Canadian is moving from one blackboard to another, scribbling them full with various mathematical formulas that go right over John’s head.

John doesn’t move and simply waits. For quite some time, there is no acknowledgement from Rodney, until, finally, he speaks, not looking up from the computer screen.

“What do you want, Sheppard? I’m busy here, so I don’t have time for your usual idiotic questions!” It is almost a growl and John hears the hostility clearly. It doesn’t face him in the least. He knows this reaction, has been through it himself more than once and he is well aware of what he has to do.

“God damn it, Sheppard!” Rodney jumps up, a fist crashing onto the table. His eyes are clouded with pain, grief and, most of all, guilt. “It’s my fault he’s dead!” And it seems that once Rodney has opened up, he cannot stop himself. His emotions erupt from him in a wave of words. “I gave him the gun! I was impatient. Wanted to go after you. What idiot gives someone who has just been fed on by a Wraith a gun?”

Rodney continues to rave and rage and John listens silently, until the scientist slumps into a chair, head in his hands and words spent. John walks over to him and squeezes his shoulder gently.

“It is not your fault, Rodney,” he says and knows that despite the truth of them, Rodney will not believe him for a long time. “The choice to end his life was his and his alone. He told you he was dying. It was his right to choose how to end it and I believe he chose the least painful way possible.”

John turns to go, when he hears the broken whisper of his friend.

“He thought I was brave, that I have changed for the better.”

John smiles.

“You are a brave man. You have saved my life countless times and even when you fear, you beat that fear back and overcome it. You are a good man and a good friend.” Rodney’s eyes fill with something like hope. It seems as if he has found something in this very moment that he has not had before.

John smiles and walks out of the lab. There is nothing left to say. Death can be tragic, sometimes even horrible. Death is also inevitable and no matter if you rage against it, blame or bury yourself in your grief, it still comes one way or another. In Pegasus, it comes far too frequently. John hates it, but life goes on, and, inevitably, so does he.

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