December 2015

27282930 31  

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Friday, April 27th, 2007 04:20 pm
Happy Birthday [ profile] yin_again!

Title: Reunion
Author: [ profile] bluflamingo
Fandom: SGA/SG-1
Pairing: John/Cam
Rating: PG-13
Words: 2057
Feedback: Yes please. Even if it’s bad. Especially if it’s bad.
Disclaimer: No, I don’t own them. To my profound disappointment.

Summary: John's starting to wonder if his life is destined to be characterised by Cam Mitchell suddenly appearing behind him (sequel to Happy Hour)


Promotion ceremony isn’t exactly the way to describe it, John thinks, standing in one of the SGC’s slightly larger conference rooms. It’s got a lot of the *signs* of a promotion ceremony, including him trying not to fidget in his dress uniform, and a handful of senior officers looking important, but it lacks the sense of actual ceremony. He knows he’s no-one on Earth’s first choice for the job, and it stings, even though he knows it’s not really important; he’s going back to the people who do want him, which should be – is – what counts.

“… Lieutenant Colonel John Sheppard,” the General says, presenting him, and John can’t quite fight the grin. He knows he’s not the only one who thought he’d never hear that, and the words feel good.

He and the General exchange salutes, then John risks glancing round the room. A few of the Atlanteans currently on Earth have shown up, and Elizabeth’s standing to one side with Rodney and Beckett; she looks incredibly pleased with herself, which is maybe something John didn’t want to know about his promotion.

There’s someone else in dress blues standing a little behind them, not-quite-leaning in the doorway, like he’s not sure if he should be there or not, and John thinks at first that it’s someone from the SGC, though he doesn’t know anyone there well enough that he’d expect them to show up in dress uniform for this.

Then the guy moves, and John catches a glimpse of half of a very familiar profile.



John jumps at the voice and fumbles with his shirt sleeve button, glad he’s half-hidden by the locker door while he takes a deep breath and tries to slow his heart down.

“Some things don’t change,” Cam says, sounding like he’s grinning.

“You work for a top secret government organization,” John points out. “You should be able to creep up on me.”

“And you’re, what, here on the tour?” John finally closes the locker door and looks at Cam. He’s half-smiling, still laughing at John, but he looks a little shell-shocked, and John doesn’t believe he’s in his dress uniform just for John’s promotion.

“This is what you were doing?” he asks.

Cam turns his hat a couple of times, his smile fading. “Not exactly.”

John fights the urge to frown, looks at Cam’s medals instead. He’s gotten a few new ones since John last saw him in his uniform, but so’s John, even with the black mark. He reaches out to touch the first medal without even meaning to, and Cam shifts back before he can make contact.

“Sorry,” John says, pulling his hand back to fasten his cuff. He’s meant to be changing to meet Elizabeth and Rodney for dinner.

“It’s OK,” Cam says quickly. “It’s…” He sounds suddenly, deeply uncomfortable. John knows he should change the subject, but he wants to know. He hasn’t seen Cam since before he left for Afghanistan; Nevada’s not exactly convenient for the base, and he can’t think what Cam would’ve been doing at Area 51.


“You were flying the 302s,” he says, “the first test flights.”

Cam’s smile is bitter this time. “And in Antarctica.”

It takes John a minute to put it together, but he’s spent most of his free time over the last few weeks reading about how Atlantis was found in the first place. He skimmed over the list of injured and dead after the dog fight in Antarctica, Mitchell not that uncommon a name, and he hadn’t connected the two until now.

He can see realization creep across Cam’s face as he watches John; his expression tightens and his eyes flicker away.

“Are you all right?” John asks stupidly.

“Yeah.” Cam grins, but it looks forced. Before he can say anything else, there’s a knock on the door.

“Colonel Sheppard?” Elizabeth calls. John can’t help grinning, even when Cam rolls his eyes.

“Coming,” he calls back. “Hey,” he says to Cam, “we’re going for dinner, you want to come?”

“Uh.” Cam blinks. “OK. Let me just get changed.”


It’s a little weird at first: Rodney frowns at them both when he introduces Cam, but Beckett’s decided to join them after all, and it doesn’t take long for Rodney to get into a heated debate with him about something John missed; after that, it’s mostly just Elizabeth shooting him the occasional curious glance across the table. Maybe she’s just surprised to learn he still has friends on Earth.

She’s not the only one.

“So how long have you been with the SGC?” she asks during a drop in the conversation.

Cam looks down at the table and grins awkwardly. “Three days. And, by the way, I don’t suppose you could see your way to leaving Dr Jackson behind, could you?”

Rodney, miraculously, keeps his mouth shut. John hasn’t yet got out of him why he doesn’t want Jackson on the expedition, but everyone in the Mountain knows he doesn’t.

“I’m afraid not.” Elizabeth doesn’t even smile, but she still looks like she’s laughing.

“Come on.” Cam turns to John. “What do you really need him for anyway?”

“Other than his fluency in Ancient?” John asks, raising one eyebrow.

“Sure,” Cam agrees, tipping his beer at John. “Other than that.”

On the edge of his vision, John watches Elizabeth’s eyebrows rise.


“Hey,” John says, leaning on the bar next to Cam.

Cam turns his head enough to look at him and John glances in the mirror behind the bar, half-expecting to see Cam’s team sitting there. “They gone?”

“Yeah.” John doesn’t know what Elizabeth said– probably doesn’t want to know – but Rodney left with her and Beckett in the end. He’s happy to believe she thinks they want to exchange Air Force reminiscences.

They drink in silence for a minute, and John doesn’t remember it being this awkward the last time they did this. ”So,” he says finally. “Where’s your first gate trip?”

Cam sighs and leans his elbows on the bar. “Good question.” John waits, and Cam says, “I asked to join SG-1,” with a dry grin.

“Yeah?” John asks. He’s kind of impressed: it must be nice to be able to ask for the job you want, rather than be told you’re taking it, whether you want to or not. The relief of being allowed back to Atlantis is crawling through his skin the same way fear of being left behind did, but he’s not kidding himself that he had anything to do with the decision.

“Yeah, except you’re taking a quarter of my team back to Atlantis with you,” Cam grumbles.

“Sorry ‘bout that.” John takes a gulp of his beer. He hasn’t spent much time in the Mountain, even since they decided they wanted to keep him after all, but he’s listened to Rodney complain about Sam Carter’s absence enough to know what’s going on. “What’s the new SG-1 like?”

“Nuts? Non-existent? Me?” Cam suggests, then shrugs. “This wasn’t what I had in mind when I asked for this.”

“I know that feeling,” John agrees.

“Atlantis?” Cam asks. He slants his gaze across at John, who holds his eye. He knows where this evening’s going to end up.

It takes a few seconds, but Cam laughs and taps his bottle against John’s. “To the SGC?” he says.

“Yeah,” John says, and they drink.


John gets a ride in with Cam the next morning, early enough to stop by his room on the base and change before the first briefing. Which would be fine, except Rodney comes out of his room as John’s unlocking his, and John really wishes they hadn’t all been moved back to the base for the last few days before the Daedalus leaves.

“Morning, McKay,” he says, figuring the best defense is a good offense, and that’s the best he’s got on three hours’ sleep.

“You, er –“ Rodney blinks at him, then looks both ways along the corridor. There are two marines standing at one end, probably too far away to hear them, but John wills Rodney not to say anything anyway. “I hope you’re not going to be late for the science briefing, Major,” Rodney says finally, tilting his chin up defiantly, and John realizes he has no idea what Rodney’s thinking, for possibly the first time since meeting him.

“Lieutenant Colonel,” he corrects. “And no, I wouldn’t dream of being late.” More because he kind of promised General O’Neill he’d behave until they leave tonight than because he wants to go, but Rodney doesn’t need to know that.

“Good.” Rodney nods like John’s one of his scientists, and John’s about to let himself into his room when Rodney smiles at him, conspiratorial and a little nervous.

John smiles back, filled with a rush of relief. “Later, Rodney.”

“Major,” Rodney says, and John doesn’t bother to correct him.


He spends all morning in briefings, amazed that, after a week of the same, anyone can possibly have anything left to say to them, much less anything that they need to say while John’s itching to go check on final preparations to leave. He doesn’t like to think what his latest crop of new marines might be getting up to, left to their own devices; he’s avoiding thinking about what the scientists might be doing, since they’re not his responsibility.

Rodney abandons him for the labs when they break for lunch, and Elizabeth gets swept away by a group of people John thinks might be anthropologists, so he sits down in the mess by himself.

He’s been there less than five minutes when Cam drops into the seat opposite him and grins.

“We might have a slight problem,” he says.

“OK.” They’re leaving for Pegasus in six hours, even if it is going to take three weeks to get to Atlantis, so John’s feeling something between incredibly relieved and jittery with nerves at what might have happened in his absence. Major Lorne seemed pretty competent during their brief (for which read two hour) handover, but John’s never been great at letting go.

“Dr Jackson?” Cam says, and waits for John to nod. “He’s unconscious in the infirmary.”

“OK,” John says again, lost for anything more intelligent to say. “Do I want to know how he got knocked unconscious in the Mountain?”

Cam grins, then stops, like he knows he shouldn’t be finding this amusing but can’t help it. “It’s a funny story,” he says, and John remembers why he sometimes doesn’t miss Cam Mitchell at all.


Six and a half hours later, because military time-keeping is apparently impossible with so many new scientists, John’s standing in the Mountain’s gate-room, watching two of his new marines get people together to be beamed aboard the Daedalus. There are fewer people than last time they were here: expedition members who were recuperating on Earth, fewer new marines than he was hoping for, and the latest civilian recruits.

John keeps looking for Ford amongst the crowd.

Ford might be the only thing that wasn’t covered in the endless briefings, beyond the General being vocally persuaded not to list him as a deserter. John’s not sure that’s a bad thing: he’s not disobeying the order if it doesn’t exist.

“Colonel.” Elizabeth looks more relaxed than she has since they left Atlantis, actually happy to be going back to potential death by Wraith on a daily basis. John knows exactly how she feels.

“Any news on Dr Jackson?” he asks.

“It doesn’t look like he’s going to be joining us on this trip.” Elizabeth looks appropriately disappointed, but John’s not sure she really wanted him any more than Rodney did: she was just more diplomatic about it.

“Colonel Sheppard, Dr Weir.” General Landry steps up in front of them. “The Daedalus is ready when you are.”

John looks round the group again, checking for Rodney and Beckett among the unfamiliar faces. “Yes, sir.”

Landry shakes Elizabeth’s hand, wishes them all luck, and makes his way back to the control room. The gate technician’s conversation with Colonel Caldwell comes over the loud-speakers, but John’s not really listening; he can’t stop thinking, home, thank God, and when the dematerialization beam washes over the, the last thing he sees is Cam in the corner of the control room, one hand raised in farewell.

Title: per ardua ad astra
Author: [ profile] bluflamingo
Rating: PG
Words: 2226
Feedback: Yes please. Even if it’s bad. Especially if it’s bad.

Summary: Original fic: the Red Arrows are an aerial display team in the UK, about whom I now know far more than I ever wanted (or needed) to!

per ardua ad astra
through adversity to the stars

Alex wanted to be a pilot even when she was a child, sitting next to Sarah in the top maths group when they were eight.

Sarah was kind of scared of heights.


“Sarah?” Ryan asks, which means it isn’t the first time he’s tried to get her attention. He always calls her Sergeant on duty.

She looks up from ticking off the pre-flight check list. “Yes, sir?”

Ryan smiles, doing the sympathetic father thing he does with everyone in the Circus. “Everything OK?”

“Yep.” Sarah grins back at him, looking down at her check sheet again. “Ready to go in ten?”

“Sounds good,” Ryan says, hefting his duffel bag. He pats her shoulder reassuringly as he makes his way round to stow his luggage.

Sarah signs off on the check sheet and blinks, hard.


Alex insisted that being scared of heights was pathetic once they were in high school, and started taking her up every tall building in town. Sarah was never sure it was working, but it must have done, because she joined the Air Cadets with Alex when they were sixteen.

“Are you sure about this?” her mum asked.

“Of course,” Sarah said, adjusting her jacket. “Anyway, Alex says we might get to fly something.” She adjusted her jacket again, so her mum wouldn’t notice her hands were shaking.

“As long as you know what you’re doing,” her mum said.

“Of course,” Sarah said again, and tucked her keys in her pocket, heading out the front door.


She spent two years on the Blues, the Red Arrows’ ground crew, bouncing between tasks and watching the planes take off without her, wishing she could be up there like half the people around her, watching the engineering officers of the Circus climbing into the backs of the Arrows to leave for displays, before she got chosen to join them. That was seven months ago, and she spent the first six in training, getting used to her plane and her pilot, so she’s only been flying out to displays with him for a few weeks.

She loves her pilot, Flight Lieutenant Mark Ryan, and Red Six, her plane, their plane. She gets a kick out of knowing she helps get them both up in the air, and keep them up there, even when she doesn’t get to see the display.

It’s all the rest of it she has trouble with.


She didn’t choose her university because of where Alex wanted to go, just like Alex didn’t choose it just because it had a University Air Squadron. It was just coincidence that one of the best places for Aeronautical Engineering (Alex) and Mechanical Engineering (Sarah) was the same place.

Sarah, it turned out, was better at the ground crew side of the UAS, probably because her hands still shook when she was in charge of a take-off.

Alex took to the flight training like Sarah’d always known she would.


“We ready to go?” Ryan asks, coming up beside her, making more noise than usual.

Sarah tears her eyes back from the nothing she’s been looking at, and registers the rest of the Circus and the pilots climbing into their planes, the Blues readying them for take-off. “Sure, of course,” she says.

Ryan lets her climb in first, but doesn’t follow her, just looks up at her from the ground. “If you’re not well enough to go, one of the standby engineers can come,” he says quietly.

The problem with the Arrows, Sarah’s learnt, is that you spend too much time with your pilot, and you end up knowing each other too well. She’s young enough to be Ryan’s daughter, and since he doesn’t see much of his real one during display season, he’s taken to treating her as though she is, which means she’s told him a lot more than she’s told most people.

“You think I’m letting you take her out without me?” she asks, pulling up a grin that might look real. “Who knows what damage you’d do?”

Ryan looks at her for a long time, then swings himself up into the pilot’s seat. “Have it your way,” he says.

“I always do,” Sarah tells him, not loud enough for him to hear.


Sarah joined the gay pride society at the start of her second year.

“Why?” Alex asked, walking to their 9am Maths lecture together, when Sarah finally took a deep breath and told her.

“Because I think… I might not be… I think I might be, you know, bisexual. Or gay. Maybe.” Gay, probably, actually, but she couldn’t say that, didn’t want Alex asking what made her sure.

“OK.” Alex said. She linked her arm through Sarah’s and squeezed. “You know I’m always here for you, right?”

“Of course,” Sarah said, squeezing back.


The plane rumbles when Ryan finally starts up the engine, the vibrations running through Sarah’s body. She checks her belt again, tightens it a little like that will help. She’s not even worried about crashing, just scared of take-off in a way she can’t explain.

“We’re up next,” Ryan tells her, crackly through her headset.

“OK.” She watches Red Seven lift off, and twists her hands together as they start to taxi down the runway.


“So…” Alex said, leaning over the back of the sofa and grinning mischievously. Sarah unwound her scarf from her neck and hung it in the hall. “How did it go?”

“Good,” Sarah said, dropping onto the sofa and leaning on Alex’s shoulder. “We had a really nice time.”

“I’m happy for you,” Alex said. She closed her text book over her finger. “Are you going to see her again?”

“I hope so.” Ellie was nice and when they’d kissed goodbye outside the bar, she’d promised to call Sarah about doing something in the week. “I think so.”

“Great,” Alex said. She put her arm round Sarah and hugged her close for a minute.

Two days later, Alex started seeing someone from her Aerodynamics seminar.


Sarah closes her eyes when the end of the runway gets close, then opens them again because she’s a trained RAF sergeant, and she’s above that kind of thing. She stares down at her hands instead, feeling the ground drop away beneath them, the tug of gravity trying to keep them down before the engine wins and they start to rise.

She picks up voices from the control tower in her headset, not loud enough to hear over the rumble of the engine. It’s a female voice, though, half-familiar, and her hand twitches for her talk button, the name on the back of her tongue until she swallows against a history that doesn’t exist, never has.

Ryan levels the plane out, and Sarah looks out the window, watching Red Nine as it lifts off.


Alex got semi- serious about the guy she was seeing, then Sarah and Ellie broke up. Then Alex and Ian broke up, and Sarah started seeing Kate, mostly casually, and she introduced Alex to her co-worker at the union bar.

When they came back after summer vacation, Kate was in France for her year out and Alex decided she wasn’t that interested in Sean after all. They were third year students, and Alex was trying to talk Sarah into applying to join the Air Force with her, so they were spending more time at Squadron events than before.

“Meet me after class,” Alex said in the morning. “We’ll go over together.”

“Sure,” Sarah said. “Outside the engineering block?”

Alex nodded, and waved over her shoulder, hurrying to lectures.

When her phone rang, twenty minutes after they were meant to meet up, all Sarah could think was that they were the most pathetic last words ever spoken.


They’ve barely levelled out when Ryan tells her that they’re starting landing procedures. It hardly seems worth the effort of arranging time at the air strip they’re going to martial on for the display flight, but she got used to the idea when she first joined the Blues, long before she got chosen for the Circus.

The air field is controlled chaos, nine planes coming in to land, taxiing and parking, even without their pilots and engineers trying to run a final set of checks before they go out again. Ryan claps her firmly on the shoulder, reminds her to look out for taxiing planes until everyone’s in – like she might forget and get herself run over, she thinks, and it should be funny but it’s not – and goes off to the lounge they’ve got set up for the pilots to wait in.

It’s the eighth display she’s done, not enough that she’s stopped feeling protective of her aircraft yet. There’s nothing left for her to check, but she stays, perched on the edge of the cockpit, watching the last plane come in, looking down on the other engineers.

“You know no-one’s going to steal her if you want to get a Coke,” Daniel calls up to her, polishing a last invisible speck from Red Three.

“Yeah.” Sarah smiles down at him. “I know,” she says, and stays where she is.


It took Sarah three months before she could face going back to the Squadron, even after she’d seen some of them at the funeral. She actually figured she’d be going just to say she was leaving, because it had always been Alex’s thing, not hers, and take-off still made her hands shake, at least when she was responsible for it.

Their officer in command came over to her when she arrived, and handed her an envelope.

“What is it?” Sarah asked, already slitting it open.

“An offer to take a training flight in a Red Arrow,” he said. He waited a moment, like he was expecting Sarah to say something, then added, “Your friend was an exceptional member of the Squadron. This isn’t an opportunity many students get.”

Sarah stared at him, then at the letter in her hands. “It’s addressed to me.”

He smiled, sympathetic and a little like he was wondering if she was stupid. “You were the second choice.”


The event’s running late, they managed to land in take-off order and it’s hot on the air-strip, for June, so it doesn’t take long for everyone to drift inside. Sarah listens to the wind sock flapping in a breeze she can’t feel, and the deep silence of nine still planes. She thinks she might fall asleep where she’s sitting.

The first time she went in an Arrow, taking the controls for a few terrifying minutes when they were in open sky, nothing for miles around, she was in Red Ten, the Senior Engineering Officer’s plane. She felt a kind of affection for it when she joined the ground crew in her blue flight suit, tried to be the one who worked on it, and felt a twinge of disappointment when she heard that she was being assigned to Red Six in the Circus.

She’s glad now, because she can never look at Red Ten without thinking about how she came to fly in it the first time, about how it should never have happened, and she’s happy doing what she does, wouldn’t want to do anything else. It hurts, though, to think how easily it might never have been this way, and she wonders, some days, if she really would give this up for the accident not to have happened, for Alex to be in Flight Lieutenant Ryan’s place and Sarah to be somewhere else. She wonders if she would have followed Alex into the Red Arrows anyway, if Alex had been chosen, and if she hadn’t, if Sarah would have made the application anyway.

She’s glad when Ryan comes striding out of the pilots’ lounge, shooing her off the plane and announcing that they’re off. She doesn’t like the answers her brain sometimes throws at her.


Most people were surprised when Sarah announced that not only had she applied to join the RAF when she graduated, but that she’d been accepted.

None of them were surprised when she said that she wasn’t intending to pursue a career as a pilot, though a few said they thought she could, and would do well.

By the time she was through graduation and initial training, she didn’t even know who she was doing it for any more. Her mum asked, more than once, if it was because of Alex, because Sarah had never been sure what she wanted to do and Alex wouldn’t have the chance, now.

She said no, and then she started making sure she’d get assigned to the Red Arrows and chosen for the Circus. It seemed like the one thing she was doing that could only be for her.


The last display they did was close enough that she could see them from the air-strip; not well enough to pick out Ryan and their plane, but enough that she could see what was happening.

This one is further away, so they only catch the planes screaming out of sight of the audience to re-form for the next section of the show.

Sarah stands on the air-strip with the rest of the Circus, shading her eyes against the sun, and watches her plane re-appear.

Friday, April 27th, 2007 06:50 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! I have them tabbed to read, but it's a wirlwind day. I'll leave you feedback this evening.
Saturday, April 28th, 2007 11:10 pm (UTC)
I stayed up to read these. The John/Cam is such a nice look at a John who is not our John, you know? I also really loved Rodney's cameo and his little glance.

But the original story - I love it. It's just wonderful and lovely. You should seriously consider publishing it. If it was novel-lenght, I'd stay up all night to read it. Thank you so much for writing it for me.
Tuesday, May 1st, 2007 06:12 pm (UTC)
If it was novel-lenght, I'd stay up all night to read it.

I think that's one of the nicest things anyone's ever said about something I've written, thank you :)

a John who is not our John, you know?

Not really, actually (it's been a long week, and it's only Tuesday!) But I'm glad you liked it anyway.