Disclaimer - MGM/Gekko/Double Secret own them.
An 'Abyss' episode addition. No deep thoughts, no great revelations, just some fluff to get us away from our recently scheduled angst.
Let me tell you something: withdrawal sucks.
I know whereof I speak.
And since I started working here, I've suffered more than my fair share. Hell, I've suffered more than *anybody's* fair share.
Not that I didn't have experience of it before SG-1 - giving up smoking after the original Abydos mission was particularly memorable - but nothing before SG-1 was quite so...dramatic.
And it's different every time. Sometimes there's the nervousness, the insane, constant, mind numbing need to do something with your hands. You can't keep still, have to keep moving, have to do something, *anything*.
Sometimes there's the pounding, unforgiving headaches. The damn things that make you feel like your skull is cracking open, and then you're exhausted and want to sleep, only the headaches are so bad that you can't; staring up at the ceiling and hoping that the throbbing will get to a point where the agony'll make you pass out.
Then there's stuff like today; cold, hot, shivering, baking, sweating like your skin has its own damn sprinkler system. Pain that - while not quite as bad as that damned virus that got me into this situation in the first place - is particularly malicious. It hurts for a while and then goes away, making you believe that that's it; that it's over. Only to come shooting back later, when you've been lulled into a false sense of security.
And you fall for it every time, because there's always the hope that somehow, someway, it won't come back again.
It helps that the guys visit - even Jonas. He doesn't hold my interest for long, of course - nothing really holds my interest at the best of times, and given that my head hurts and my body can't decide was temperature it is, my eyes glaze over within about thirty seconds of him opening his mouth.
Teal'c's better. Never one to speak much anyway, he says only what needs to be said, and just his very presence is helpful.
The General appears from time to time, with a reassuring word and the inevitable comments about how lucky I am.
Like I didn't know.
Doc's there pretty much constantly, of course. I don't know how she does it, staying on her feet, in those *shoes* for hours on end. Always with an understanding smile - unless you do something to piss her off.
Then it's the death glare.
Mostly, Carter has been leaving me alone. No doubt figuring that I want to be but failing to understand that it's the last thing I want.
Being left alone with just me. With no one to talk to and nothing to distract me. Just me, and the thoughts in my head for company. Not even a snake anymore.
It may not be what I want, but I have to acknowledge that it's probably what I need.
But...I do find myself looking forward to the times she appears. Sometimes she's straightforward; other times she visits under the pretence of seeing Fraiser and though we both know better, we also both understand.
Take this moment, right now.
She's just walked in. She smiles briefly, then talks to Fraiser about something with her back to me.
I can almost imagine that I've just woken up again after escaping from that...place.
Fraiser's busy; has to work on something. Carter sighs, turns towards me, and hovers around the end of my bed.
She asks the same question whenever she's here. This time is no different.
"Do you need anything?"
As I have every time before, I consider saying the first word that comes to mind.
As I have decided every time before, I don't say it.
Things are complicated enough. Kanan's footprints are still in my head, and...
...is still there, too. Some bare, fragile, spirit inside my mind. Half-existing. I see her sometimes, standing at the end of my bed. Just where Carter is, actually.
Maybe Daniel was right.
She nods, smiles gently, and taps the edge of the mattress. "I'll see you later."
"Sure." I'd shrug, but that would require effort. "I'm not going anywhere."
A faint grin, and then she turns and walks away. As she leaves, every step taking her further and further, the pain slides back into my body, only making me realise then that it had ever left at all.
And I'm alone; lying on the bed, cold, hot, shivering, baking, sweating like my skin has its own damn sprinkler system...wishing that she hadn't gone.
Wishing she were still here.
Like I said before:
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