by Jennamajig

SUMMARY: They hadn't abandoned her. Written for the abandonment challenge at sgaflashfic on LJ.

SEASON/SPOILERS: Season One. The Storm/The Eye.

AUTHOR'S NOTE: My try at writing from an usual, at least for me, POV. Quotes are taken from War and Peace.

DISCLAIMER: I don't own Stargate: Atlantis or anything associated with it. I'm simply borrowing, but I promise to return all in one piece. Eventually.

They hadn't abandoned her.

Every morning when she woke up, she'd tell herself that. Repeat it so her mind couldn't get used to the darker more believable truth.

That no one was coming.

That her current daily routine was her forever future.

Every night, she'd take a look around her. The accommodations were not uncomfortable; nor were they cold and sterile like the prisons on her planet. The bed was soft and the sheets always clean. The food was different, but surprisingly good, the new tastes tingling on her tongue. She had access to what she was told was called a bathroom here, and it held towels that were dry and warm. She even had an occasional visitor or two.

But despite the comforts, she was still a prisoner. Free to go nowhere, never to walk free, never to see her people again.

Oddly enough, this did not bother her. Or at least not as much as she'd thought it would. For deep inside she hoped her people may miss her and try and rescue one of their own.

They hadn't abandoned her.

Every morning, it got harder to tell herself that. But she still did.

She watched, heard through the whispers of guards, through Teyla's tales when she visited or in Major Sheppard's eyes when he'd come with his battered copy of 'War and Peace' wanting to read aloud, of Atlantis' loyalty. No one was left behind, no matter how big or small. Yes, she'd heard the term 'expendable' uttered by a man or two, but she figured she must have gauged its meaning correctly, for she'd never seen it put into practice among their own. Major Sheppard had killed a fleet of her people all to save his own.

And she did not doubt that he'd do the same even if it were simply one of his teammate's lives at stake and not Atlantis itself.

Her people could learn so much from them.

She already had.

Late at night, she'd lay in her bed, blankets tangled around her and dream of her father. But the good memories would melt into war and revenge and she'd bolt up, feeling regret and uncertainty.

Revenge had put her here, after all. But she was alive.

And alone.

Would Koyla risk it all to save her? She knew the answer. He was a violent man and she'd seen it first hand, killing when there was no need to kill and his men seemed set to do the same. Her own fury had clouded her judgment. She had never considered herself a violent person.

Still, when Major Sheppard came, she'd question herself, think about what she really was, what she really wanted.

She'd lean against the wall as she listened to his voice recite the pages of War and Peace. Written by man named Tolstoy he'd told her and a very famous book where he was from. Though, he'd joke, its length had school children groaning. He'd smile, but she couldn't gather the courage to smile back at him. She had no idea why he came to see her. Why he read for hours words she'd never heard and may not even truly understand.

"Every man, savage or sage, however incontestably reason and experiment may prove to him that it is impossible to imagine two different courses of action in precisely the same conditions, feels that without this irrational conception (which constitutes the essence of freedom) he cannot imagine life. He feels that, however impossible it may be, it is so, for without this conceptions of freedom not only would he be unable to understand life, but he would be unable to live for a single moment."

She understood this passage, for many words seemed true. It was a piece of she wanted, missed, hoped for. A poignant picture of her own predicament. She was a prisoner. However comfortable, she was not free. Atlantis could decide what to do with her, fearful of her tactics, her fire.

She's fearful, too. But of much more. Each day, as she questioned herself, she thought of own loyalty to her people. For the first time, she locked eyes with the Major before turning sharply away.

She knows she cannot be trusted. All of her freedom must stay in this place. Atlantis has a much bigger battle to face and they will not abandon each other. Even though there is talk of fleeing, she knows it will not happen. Like they did before, she knows they will fight until the bitter end.

"The profoundest and most excellent dispositions and orders seem very bad, and every learned militarist criticizes them with looks and importance, when they relate to a battle that has been lost, and the very worst dispositions and orders seem very good, and serious people fill whole volumes to demonstrate their merits, when they relate to a battle that has been won."

She closed her eyes against the words. A battle lost was critiqued and her people must have done such a thing when they had not taken Atlantis, for she certainly was rethinking her actions every day she remained here. She wondered if she was one of criticisms. A loss.

Major Sheppard closed the book and sighed. Briefly she pondered her fate in light of the upcoming war. Would Atlantis abandon her? She was a prisoner, after all. Expendable.

She forced herself to meet the Major's eyes once again. He did not waver in his gaze and she blinked.

She knew.

Atlantis wouldn't abandon her despite her crime.

But her people had.

The next morning, she awoke and told herself nothing.