Disclaimer: I don't own "Stargate: Atlantis." I am in no way trying to make a profit off this story, I am merely writing it and posting for my and other people's enjoyment.
Synopsis: Ronon/Teyla. A sad day on Atlantis leaves Teyla heartbroken.
Warnings: Character Death (2), but nothing graphic
Pairings: Ronon/Teyla, a little bit of John/Elizabeth (if you squint)
Spoilers: None, it's a future fic and an AU
Title: Beyond this Endless Night
Dedication: To my good friend H.W., thank you so very much for your support and encouragement in my writing and my life. You are so nice to me!
Author's notes: This fanfic does involve character death (nothing graphic), so if you're not already in a sad mood be prepared to get in one, and have the box of tissues ready (but don't let that scare you off). As always, thank you for reading, I hope you enjoy, and please review me to let me know how good (or bad) I am. Thank you!
Beyond This Endless Night
Fragrant smoke curled around her.
Instruments hummed and sang behind her.
A single light burned brightly—far too brightly—above her.
People surrounded her, looking at her with condolence as well as sorrow of their own.
The dress she'd worn far too many times before felt too heavy upon her shoulders, like a binding chain that held her down and constricted her airway.
It all had an almost hypnotic effect on her, dulling her senses—and temporarily her pain—as her mouth opened and her voice rose, performing the words to a song that she had never expecting to sing again, not this soon, anyway.
Typhoid Fever, Doctor Beckett had called it. An almost extinct virus on Earth; a quietly raging one in the Pegasus galaxy. They had just been unfortunate to land on a world where it was seething.
The stench of death had been everywhere. They'd tried to help the people of that village, of that planet, but had ultimately and miserably failed.
It was just too strong, an enemy that could not be seen except through its effect.
A few hours after the return to Atlantis people had begun to fall ill. Doctor Beckett worked endlessly, tirelessly, saving as many as he could. Catching it in the early stages would help, he told her. It helped him bolster the victim's immune system so they could fight it off.
Most of the ill had gone back to Earth once the quarantine was over. They had not wished to stay on Atlantis, not after what had happened there.
Those that remained that had been ill continued with their work, relentlessly throwing themselves back into their jobs so as to not remember the horrors of the Fever.
The Athosians—her people—had been mercifully spared, as they remained on the mainland of Atlantica until the quarantine was over and all traces of the Fever had been eradicated.
And yet here she was, standing in the middle of a brightly lit room in Atlantis, singing the song of her ancestors, performing the Ring Ceremony for someone not of her people by birth, but who had been adopted as an Athosian from almost the day he set foot on the mainland.
Many she loved had been caught in the rage of the Fever:
Elizabeth Weir, who still remained in a wheelchair as she continued to recover.
Colonel Sheppard wasn't much better; he stood protectively next to the leader of Atlantis looking almost as pale and gaunt as his wife.
Rodney McKay still looked too far from healthy, but was nonetheless recovering.
Radek Zelenka, who hadn't been hit nearly as hard and now looked as healthy as ever.
Carson Beckett, who had contracted the virus himself but still saved so many, including himself, despite the fact that he'd nearly been dead on his feet himself with the Fever.
There had been one casualty to the Fever, one name that stood starkly against the black backdrop of her mind, for whom the Ceremony was for.
The final words of the song fell from her lips, dying out against the harmony of the music behind her and the painful shattering of her heart as her knees failed her and she crumpled to her knees next to the single cot set up in the middle of the room. Her tearing sobs faded everything else into the background as her hand blindly reached out to once more grasp his cold hand in hers, her other hand moving to rest against the tangled dreadlocks he'd never taken the time to have tamed.
Never had she expected to have to perform the Ring Ceremony for Ronon Dex, a man who had always been so vibrantly alive; always moving; fighting; living.
Never had she expected to have to bury her heart, her love, her husband; the man who had always helped her through the rough times and celebrated with her through the ultimate victories.
Never had she expected to have her heart broken so irreparably, so irreversibly, that nothing and no one could ever patch it back together again.
Never had she expected to be free with him from the Wraith, to survive with him for this long against such impossible odds, only to lose him to a virus.
Never had she expected to have to raise their child alone in a familiar yet foreign city that had always seemed a little more like home when he was there.
Smoke continued to curl; lights burn; instruments strum.
Life went on around her, flowing like a sea around Teyla Emmagan and the man she loved.
Teyla noticed none of it as she sat on her knees, one hand clutching Ronon's, the other resting against his hair, her face hidden in the folds of his shirt as she cried gut-wrenching sobs of utter pain and loss.
Despite the fact that life went on without him for everyone else, it never would for her. She'd always be trapped in that moment, with fragrant smoke curling around her; people whispering and moving about; and the music still drifting around her, driving the blade harder into her heart with every mournful note.
Ronon Dex was gone, Teyla Emmagan was left a widowed, broken woman, Kyana Dex was left fatherless, and Atlantis was left without one of the greatest warriors she had ever known.
Life would never be the same again, even for those who had never known Ronon well.
All those who met Teyla in the days, weeks, and years that followed her beloved husband's death saw a woman haunted by her past and at unrest with her survivor's guilt.
Almost twenty years to the day of Ronon Dex's Ring Ceremony, Teyla Emmagan was found lying next to Ronon's grave, her hand resting on his headstone and a peaceful smile on her lips.
Atlantis once more mourned the loss of a great warrior and friend; Kyana performed the Ring Ceremony for her mother; and Teyla was laid to rest next to her husband.
The words carved onto her headstone were ones that would burn forever into the memories of all who knew her and bring to light a boundless love to those that would find them in the future.
Wife, mother, warrior, and friend
Died of a broken heart
It is said that time heals all wounds
It is also said that love is timeless
If love is timeless, wounds never heal
Ronon and Teyla shared this love.
Even time itself mourns them.