Finding your way back
Authors note: Yay! This story has been nominated as part of the The Sunnydale Memorial Fanfiction Awards.
Disclaimer : I do not own SGA or BtVS. I only own my twisted imagination.
In Antarctica John Sheppard was an enigma in the very truest sense of the word. He was a highly decorated Major who was stuck doing milk runs in McMurdo. Of course, base gossip came up with many theories, commonly, black marks or disobeying orders. If any of these were true then there was nothing on his official record. Then again, he did not have much of anything written on his official record, such was the life of a black ops operative. He was a handsome, friendly man but never let anyone get close. The few lonely women that would try to flirt with him would soon give up. If, a women got too close he would subconsciously touch the simple gold band, which he kept on his dog tags.
In truth, John was grieving. His beautiful wife, who had survived so much, any foe thrown at her, had died. One of the minis was a fraction to slow and Buffy had thrown herself in front of the spear.
He could never blame his wife, Buffy was a leader and he understood the need to protect your people. While he could understand what she had done, it did not stop the grief.
Buffy had been a close friend of the president, even the secret service adored her. The day Buffy and he had teleported into the Oval Office to stop an attack on the President, probably had to be one of the strangest days in his life. At the time, John was officially the liaison between the military and the IWC. The President upon hearing the news sent his condolences and asked John what he could do, John had replied, "Get me as far away from civilisation as possible."
That was the real story behind his appearance in Antarctica but he did not mind, in fact, he rather liked Antarctica . His plan of being perfectly isolated was going well until he ferried General O'Neill to the super-secret site that he already knew about. General O'Neill had been giving him strange looks ever since they had avoided the missile.
O'Neill had given him an assessing look, "Aliens are real."
Sheppard gave him a crooked grin, "I'm aware Sir, this way."
They were travelling down in the lift, O'Neill was looking at him curiously, "Just how did you gain clearance?"
Sheppard shrugged, "I was attached to an organisation that helped smooth things over with the IOA."
O'Neill was now smirking because he knew that no one made nice with the IOA. O'Neill knew that this organisation must wield a lot of power to win against the IOA. O'Neill realised that there was a lot more to the Major than met the eye.
John was resting in the infirmary having had a near miss with the Iratus bug. John had never told anyone what had happened when he had been dead. The idea that Buffy had visited him, comforting him was simply too private. Well it was comforting to him. Buffy had stood in front of him, just like he remembered her, larger than life wanting to know 'what the hell he was thinking'.
She had kissed him softly on the mouth, "It's time to go back but I am trying to help."
When he regained consciousness, he knew he was alive by the level of pain. At first, he had thought it was merely a dream to comfort him but the last comment suggested there was more to the dream. He also thought that considering the bad situation they faced he would take any help he could get.
John could tell there was something wrong, they had reached Earth a little too easily. General Hammond had been courteous and, as soon as, his debriefing was finished, he was told about the IWC car that was waiting for him and Teyla.
It was not surprising even after Buffy's death John still was a member of the core Scooby's. The only problem was that when he was around them it just made the ache stronger. The next words out of the Generals mouth could have brought him to his knees. There was no way that Buffy would be waiting in the car. He wondered what was going on, until he knew a little more he would play along but he really was not sure how well he could play along with this scenario.
He found his tolerance was over the minute he saw his wife's sunny face, there was no way he was willing to play along and he wanted to know what was going on.
The event had brought back painful memories and it was only thanks to Teyla did he start to talk about his life on Earth. He was grateful for Teyla she was a good friend and confidante and he found that talking with Teyla had helped him more than any session with Kate.
The team were returning to the sanctuary planet. They were hoping that the High Priestess would be able to answer a few more questions. The group turned the last corner before they reached the steps to the temple. John glanced up and froze, he would recognise Buffy's profile anywhere but he did not understand how she could be there.
The team were alert the minute John froze and they were concerned when Teyla looked at her friend with so much sympathy. All were startled as the woman transformed into a bright light and disappeared.
"John?" Teyla asked him gently.
John shook of his mood, "We have a job to do."
Ford looked to Dr McKay, "What is that about Doc?"
Rodney was a genius when it came to hard-sciences but he was less of a genius when it came to people. He was even less of an expert when it came to judging John Sheppard's heart.
The high priestess was very beautiful and welcomed the team. However, all could tell that whoever had visited the priestess had rattled her as badly as it had rattled their leader. Nevertheless, she smiled serenely at John, "You have friends in high places."
John was confused, "She wouldn't ascend it was not in her nature to watch."
Teyla was the only who knew who the 'she' was. Chaya could see the masked pain and gave him a sympathetic smile, "You're right. They made her a power, she is fighting from above John but she is worried about you."
Rodney did not understand what was going on asked with his usual bite, "Sheppard something you want to share with the class?"
Sheppard gave him a glare, "No." He tuned back to Chaya, "I take it you are ascended?"
Chaya knew she could not deceive them, "Yes."
John understood immediately what had happened, "You're being punished."
Rodney was incredibly frustrated, "Why won't your people let you help?"
Chaya addressed the answer carefully, "The Major understands. Order is integral Dr McKay and my people fear the potential chaos."
The meeting had been unique and interesting but ultimately the Atlantean group had not gained anything that could help them. As the team left, she stopped Sheppard, "I was asked to pass on a message. 'Remember your promise."
John had sighed, "Everyday."
Elizabeth knew that something had happened on the planet. McKay was tight with tension, Ford looked confused, John weary, wearier than she could ever remember and Teyla kept looking at John with empathetic eyes.
They all filed in for the post-op debrief, Elizabeth choose to get the briefing underway, "So what happened?"
Rodney snorted, "Let's start with how Sheppard understands the Ancients policy on non-interference."
Elizabeth had a consummate poker face, it was required in her line of work but even she could not hide her look of surprise.
John just wanted to collapse asleep but knew he would have to say something. "Chaya was visited by a power. They have more power than the ascended and before you ask Rodney they can't help."
Elizabeth knew that John understood more than he was saying. Rodney though was clearly not happy, "Well who was she?"
"She?" Elizabeth queried.
Rodney snorted, "This was the best bit. John knew the power who warned the high-priestess."
John looked up and his face was completely devoid of any emotion, "She's my wife Rodney."
Not wanting to be involved in the conversation any longer he got up, needing some space. He looked to Elizabeth, "I need ten."
Elizabeth could only nod her head trying to put all the new pieces of information together. Rodney was sitting down in his chair looking stunned, "She's dead though."
Teyla sighed, "Yes and it is the second time he's had to face his grief in the last few months."
Elizabeth suddenly realised exactly how John had known what was going on in the scenario that mist planet aliens had created.
She came to a decision, "I'll ask John if there is anything relevant I should know otherwise you are all to leave this one alone. Understood?"
All nodded and she dismissed them to return to their other duties.
The bomb was only option that they had left and he refused to ask any of his men. He let up a quick prayer that Buffy would not kick his ass the minute she saw him.
Buffy did one better; she was tired of fighting a loosing battle amongst the powers. She had been keeping an eye on John and quietly working towards a descension, she needed to make sure that it would not upset the balance.
John did not understand, one minute he was arming the bomb and the next he was standing in the gate room of Atlantis with his beautiful wife berating him. He did not care where he was, he did what he had wanted to do for the last two years and kissed her deeply.
She fell into his kiss, as she always did, she was distracted for a moment but as she pulled back to breathe she continued to berate him.
McKay and Elizabeth looked at each other unable to understand what they were seeing. Rodney was truly astonished; he had gone from being sad at the loss of his best friend and the potential destruction of his city to watching the mother of all domestics.
He recognised the diminutive blonde; she was in the sole picture Sheppard had brought with him. The picture was just John, with his arms wrapped around the blonde and both were the very picture of contentment. Over the last year, content was not a state that he could associate with his best friend.
Of course, while the man was attractive, he had also never seen the man kiss anyone, hell come to think about it touch was a rare privilege,
As they broke apart the blonde gave Sheppard a saucy wink before handing Rodney something.
"Present." She offered.
Rodney's jaw dropped, she had given him a ZPM. The shocks were not over, in the next minute, the spell was broken and both looked like soldiers.
John squared his shoulders, "Can you track the Wraith?"
Buffy closed her eyes and stretched out her senses. Sure enough, they were there, tingling on the edge of her senses. She called the scythe to her; it was still hers and the one weapon that felt perfect in her hands. Buffy did not know that after her death the scythe had disappeared and would no longer work for any of the other slayers.
"Stackhouse, you and your team are with Buffy. Be careful."
Buffy nodded, she was all business the minute she had sensed a threat. "Follow me."
The Marines were confused but followed the orders of there CO, who was now officially the luckiest son of the bitch on the planet. Any doubts the Marines had disappeared the minute Buffy engaged her first wraith in hand-to-hand combat. In a few moments, it was clear that the wraith was outclassed and all took great satisfaction as she beheaded the alien.
Meanwhile, back in the gate room all were a little stunned at the events they had witnessed. Sheppard needed to motivate them. He pointed to the ZPM that Rodney was cradling, "Rodney we need that module installed yesterday!"
Rodney was not calm, his poor scientist mind wanted explanations that it could not find, "What the hell is going on?"
John inwardly grinned, yelling was always better with Rodney and he knew that both Rodney and Elizabeth deserved answers.
John grimaced, "Answers later Rodney. Right now, the base needs securing; we need that module up and running! Where is Col Everett?"
Elizabeth shook her head, John sighed and yet again his CO was down and he was in command. "Walker, Jones follow Dr McKay and keep him safe."
He received sharp salutes and they were gone. Elizabeth who knew a little more about the situation asked a little stunned, "Just how is Buffy here?"
John cheerfully shrugged, "Honestly no clue she always enjoys defying the odds."
He moved over to the sensors, he asked Atlantis to rearrange them so he could work on sending the teams to the hotspots. He was marking time until the module was online and he could get in the chair and take the fight to the Wraith, as he so desperately wanted to do.
It was funny in a way; he remembered the quote about finding hope in the darkest of places. He did not know what tomorrow would bring but with Buffy's return, he had found his hope.