Wishing you were somehow here again

Wishing you were somehow near

Vala Mal Doran shivered against the bitter snow and clutched her arms to try to warm herself. She used to like winter. She used to have the greatest time with snow angels and snowball fights and ice-skating and that Earth tradition the team had introduced to her…Christmas. But as of one year ago, to this date, she hated winter. For winter was dead and grey. It was cold and dreary. But above all, winter was when he had died. Vala had caught the stupid flu, brought on by the cold of winter, and had had to stay at home. The rest of the team went on what was supposed to be a routine mission but of course it didn't turn out that way. When the team had come back it was too late. She hadn't even gotten to say good-bye.

"Mommy?"

Vala looked down to the little baby girl in her arms and forced a smile on her lips.

"Yes, Morgan, sweetie?"

Little Morgan pointed in front of them. "Daddy?"

Vala looked to the snow-covered gravestone her daughter was indicating, swallowing down the tears, and nodded.

"Yes. That's Daddy."

Vala walked closer and knelt down, burying Morgan deeper into her coat, leaving the child's head out as to show her the gravestone. The moisture on her face increasing with her sorrow, Vala brushed away the snow and read the etching.

Daniel Nicholas Jackson

lies here

Loving Friend and Father

The Universe Is Dimmer Without You

"I can imagine the look on his face if he had ever found out about you," Vala whispered into Morgan's hair. "I imagine he'd have been completely shocked, maybe thinking I was toying with him at first. But imagine his excitement, his pride, his love." Now the tears were flowing freely. "Oh, Daniel. I wish…I wish you could see your daughter. She has your eyes and your smile. I wish you knew. I wish you knew I love you. I wish…I wish I had been there. Then maybe—maybe you'd still be here. Not rotting away in the dirt. Maybe we'd…we'd have more kids. And Teal'c wouldn't have left. And Cam would still laugh. And Jack wouldn't be so angry with everyone. And Sam wouldn't be struggling with depression. And Adria wouldn't have committed suicide when she realized the truth about the Ori. Maybe." Vala stopped for a moment, her sobs overtaking her. "But we'll never know, will we, Morgan?" she squeaked in hysteria. "It's too late…it's too late…"

She knelt where she was for what seemed like hours, her face growing numb with the mixture of wet and cold. She wished and hoped and dreamed with all her might that things were different.

"Vala?"

Vala turned to see four familiar faces standing behind her. Sam smiled wistfully, a forced smile.

"Guess we all had the same idea."

Vala nodded dumbly, stroking Morgan's hair.

"Don't see much of you anymore," Jack commented gruffly, an obvious attempt to be civilized. "How's the kid doing?"

"Morgan is fine," Vala whispered.

"You have been crying, Vala Mal Doran," Teal'c observed sadly.

"And you came back," Vala shot back bitterly.

Teal'c nodded. "However, only for today. I came to pay my respects to Dr. Jackson."

Vala nodded glumly, sniffling. "I loved him," she said softly.

"Did we ever tell you what he said before…well, before it happened?" Cam asked, walking forward and placing a comforting hand on her shoulder. Vala shook her head, fighting back the second round of sobs.

"We had been talking about the bad case of flu you'd gotten and then just about your progress in fitting in and then just about you in general when he mentioned how…how he'd never admit it to anyone else but how he loved you. He said he didn't know why because you could be such a pain sometimes but how your selflessness after Adria was born and your just all-around fun seemed to make up for it," Cam told her. "And you know how reserved he was. He never told anyone his feelings like that unless it was a really strong emotion that he couldn't hold in. He loved you, Vala. He loved all of us." Cam stood back up, looking at the rest of the friends. "We've all been being idiots, letting this grief take over our lives. He wouldn't have liked us turning into something we aren't. It's been a year now. Time to move on. Time to remember him, but to continue on with our lives."

Jack smiled wryly. "Bravo, Colonel. Wonderful speech."

"He is correct, however," Teal'c pointed out. "We are still a team. We are SG-1."

"But Teal'c, you're only here for one day," Vala argued. "And, Jack, you're in too high of a position. And Sam, you can't go off world while you're taking those anti-depressant pills. And I have to take care of Morgan."

Sam smiled, a weak but not a forced smile. "One step at a time, Vala. We'll get back to normal eventually."

Vala smiled and took Cam's outstretched hand to help upright herself.

"Dinner at my house," he declared. "Sort of a reunion thing. How's that sound?"

Everyone agreed automatically. And as the quintet left the cemetery, Vala hoisted Morgan up on her shoulder. Morgan gazed back to her father's gravestone and cooed happily.

"Daddy!" she giggled. "Buh-buh, Daddy!"

Turning at her daughter's cry, Vala smiled. "Bye, Daniel. I love you."

"Good-bye Vala."

No more memories, no more silent tears

No more gazing across the wasted years

Help me to say good-bye

Help me say good-bye

A/N: Song is Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again from The Phantom of the Opera.

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