A Fair Day Louise Sorensen June29, 2011
A Stargate SG-1 Fanfiction dedicated to my friend @kaiserjose1
Disclaimer; I have no claim on the characters in this story, and no copyright infringemet is intended.
Col. Jack O’Neill, USAF Ret. waited impatiently for his visitors pass, then hurried behind his escort as they entered the elevator. He frowned when the young Lieutenant pressed the button for the Infirmary level. No one had explained why he had so suddenly been called in, and all of the possibilities worried him.
Unprepared for the sight of the pale figure lying in the bed, he stopped in his tracks. A child, about ten years old, looked up at him. A woman stood up from the bedside chair and hurried to him.
“Jack! I’m so glad you’re here,” she said, embracing him.
“Laira!” He held her tight, felt her body trembling.
She stepped back and gave him a small smile. “Fair Day to you, Stranger.” A little girl walked slowly around the bed and joined her mother.
“This is your daughter, Neely.”
O’Neill sank back on his heels a little, looking for somewhere to sit down.
“And this,” said Laira, nodding to the boy in the hospital bed, “is your son Shon.”
Before O’Neill could say anything, a doctor bustled in. Jack recognized him from Atlantis.
“I see you’ve had a little time with your family, Jack,” Dr. Beckett said, and mumbled a few words to the soldier escort, who nodded at him and left.
“Right, then… let’s get started.” Beckett motioned them both to chairs and they all sat down.
“I’m sorry, Jack. Your son has been diagnosed with leukemia. But the good news is, we’ve gone ahead and done some tests and you’re a match for him. We’re going to do a bone marrow transplant. This procedure is scheduled for three days from now. You’ll have a full physical tomorrow morning at 0900 hours. Don’t eat or drink anything after 0600 tonight. We’ve come across some new protocols that have proved very successful in treating this particular form of the disease, and I’m very optimistic. Now then, do you have any questions?” His big blue eyes were warm with sympathy. O’Neill shook his head and Beckett patted him on the shoulder and hurried out.
O’Neill looked at Laira. “Phew. We’ve got a lot of catching up to do. Can we take the children out for lunch?”
The base canteen was half full. People craned their necks to get a look at O’Neill and his family, but gave them their privacy. O’Neill wondered how much more they knew than him.
“I should have known. I should have sensed something… I’m so sorry I wasn’t there for you, Sweetheart…" He looked Laira in the eyes.
“I found out I was pregnant shortly after you left, Jack. I would have contacted you, but things got very hectic…we had a war…“
“A war?“ O’Neill gripped the table.
“It was more like a skirmish… a small invasion. It’s a very long story, Jack.
People came to our planet and wanted to take our Tears of the Ancestors… you know, the rocks that fall from the sky when we enter our … our meteor belt. That’s the word, isn’t it? Yes.” She frowned.
“In time, these people became a problem, and asked more of us than we were willing to give. But we learned much from them before they succumbed to the fevers.”
“Fevers?“ O’Neill said, leaning forward. “I never heard of fevers when I was there. Why didn’t I succumb to the fevers?“
“Oh. Well. You had a mild case. And the proper medicines to help you survive. These people were unfortunate enough to be exposed to a very deadly form of the illness. But my people have prospered since then, with the knowledge and technology that the invaders shared with us,“ she said, her face calm. O’Neill thought there was a great deal more to the story than she was telling, but decided to leave it alone.
“And how have you been? she said, reaching out for his hand.
“Oh…you know… retired. Golf… fishing…” he said with a small shrug and squeezed her hand.
“How’s that girl you talked so much about? Samantha, I believe her name was,” Laira said, with a twinkle in her eye.
He sighed. “She got married. To that cop guy. You remember I told you about Pete,” he said, looking at her.
“Yes… go on…”
“They’re expecting their first child. She’s taking mat leave… maternity leave… for awhile. Teal’c’s an ambassador for the Jaffa now. We go golfing when he comes to Earth. That’s about it. Oh, and Daniel. Daniel got married again. He has two kids…cute as a button.. wonderful wife, a great project going on in At---, oops… sorry, not supposed to talk about that. That’s about it. I fish. I golf.”
Neely yawned and blinked, struggling to stay awake. O’Neill glanced down at Shon, who was already asleep in his wheelchair, and opened his arms to his daughter. She came to him and he swept her into his lap. Curling up like a kitten, she was asleep in a moment.
They finished lunch and O’Neill escorted them to their quarters. While the children slept in the other room, he and Laira sat together on the soft living room sofa and caught up.
“You don’t look a day older than the day I first saw you,” he said at one point, wondering how he had ever gotten used to being away from her.
“And you look like you have aged well,” she said laughing, but he could tell she was pleased. She snuggled closer to him, reached her hand out and caressed his face. He put his head down and closed his hand over hers. Moved her hand to his lips and kissed it. She leaned in closer, hesitated a moment, and kissed him on the lips. The years fell away, and they took comfort in each other’s arms.
O’Neill woke up from the anaesthetic, vomiting. He remembered cold dreams of space and black. Someone was asking him questions, pestering him.
“A wife and two kids… twins!“ he heard himself saying. The nurse continued to bother him, her loud voice intruding on his thoughts, until his thoughts and his voice came together and made sense, then she left. He looked around and saw Laira and Neely sitting in chairs at the foot of his bed. They both looked tired.
“Where’s Shon?” he said, his voice rough and trembling.
“He is in intensive care,” Laira said, standing up to come to his side. “We can go there when you are feeling up to it. So far, he is doing well.”
“It’s been eleven months now. Shon is cancer free. I think we can be optimistic that the treatment was successful,” Doctor Beckett said. “Just bring him in once a year for a check up, sooner if you have any concerns. And you’re all set.” He shook their hands and watched them as they filed out of his office.
Jack and his family had spent the months of Shon’s recovery alternating between the base infirmary and his retirement home on the lake. He had taught the kids to swim and fish, they had celebrated their first Christmas with his sisters and their families, and had had their first introduction to snow.
Doctor Beckett’s words lifted from them a burden they had not known they were carrying. They left Cheyenne Mountain and drove to Colorado Springs for a few days of swimming and golf. Neely and Shon were screaming down the water slide and swimming with a school of other children under the watchful eye of a shapely lifeguard. Jack and Laira sat poolside beneath an umbrella.
“I heard from Darro Farvee the other day,” Laira said, taking a sip of iced tea.
“Do you remember him? You were trying to teach him to golf when you were with us.”
“Darro Farvee. You don’t mean Dare, do you? Tall fellow… had a brother who made the clubs, but wouldn’t play? Dare had a wicked slice… how is he?” Jack said, his eyes on the kids.
“He has opened up his own golf course. With sheep, to keep the grass short.” Laira chuckled
Jack turned around to look at her, ”The last time I checked, there were no sheep on your planet.”
“We got them last year. A gesture of goodwill from your government,” Laira said, looking smug. “How would you like to stay at my place for awhile, now that Shon can travel?”
Jack thought for a moment and his eyes brightened. “It sounds wonderful,” he said, and sat back in his chair to resume his watch of their children. The hot Colorado sun beat down. The sky was clear and blue. It was a fair day.