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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009 03:20 pm
WIP copy, finished version has been posted.


[DRAFT ONE]

He never meant to come home again.

Except even as he thinks it, he knows its wrong. Perched on an ancient spire, two drinks too many into biology's best batch, its obvious through the California haze that this hasn't been home since he first stepped through the gate.

Not that the universe cared what he thought --he'd long ago given up any hope of avoiding Murphy's Law and all its correlaries-- but this isn't how the story was supposed to end. All he'd done, all he'd been, only mattered in a galaxy far far away, and here he was, watching the credits roll.

They wouldn't scrap Atlantis, she was too bright a prize to lose, but a washed-up pilot prone to dramatic leaps of faith isn't what they need to keep her safe, not here, not now. He can almost see the stage directions that march him off into the sunset. Alone.

Five drinks too many and Teyla finally finds him, counting down the names of everyone who should have ridden with him. She counts with him until they reach the last name, letting it slip into the waters, written forever in the memory of the sea. His burden laid at Atlantis's feet, makes him feel lighter, not empty...

And somehow, that's enough.



[DRAFT TWO]

He never meant to come home again.

Except even as he thinks it, he knows it's wrong. Perched on an ancient spire, two drinks too many into biology's best batch, its obvious through the California haze that this hasn't been home since he first stepped through the gate.

Not that the universe cared what he thought --he'd long ago given up any hope of avoiding Murphy's Law and all its corollaries-- but this isn't how the story was supposed to end. All he'd done, all he'd been, only mattered in a galaxy far far away. He's on the wrong side of forever, watching the credits roll.

The SGC wouldn't scrap Atlantis, she was too bright a prize to lose, but a washed-up pilot prone to dramatic leaps of faith isn't what they need to keep her safe. Not here, not now. He can almost see the stage directions that march him off into the sunset. Alone.

Five drinks too many and Teyla finally finds him, counting down the names of those who should have ridden with them in that last desperate dash to Earth. She counts the fallen with him until they reach the last name, letting it slip into the waters of the bay, written forever in the memory of the sea. His burden laid at Atlantis's feet, makes him feel lighter, not empty...

And somehow, that's enough.

Lift up your glasses, all grief to contain.
For we may or might never all meet here again.


[DRAFT THREE]

Five drinks too many and Teyla finally finds him, counting down the names of those who should have ridden with them in that last desperate dash to Earth. She sits beside him, quietly, until they reach the last name, letting it slip into the waters of the bay, written forever in the memory of the sea. His burden laid at Atlantis's feet, makes him feel lighter, not empty...

And somehow, that's enough.