Secrets of the Mind
Disclaimers in Part 1
Note from the author: I am so sorry for the delay in posting the final chapter of Secrets of the Mind. Again thank you all so much for your reviews and hope you enjoy the rest.
Elizabeth turned to see Major Lorne running up to her. "What can I do for you, Major?"
"Ma'am, even though we didn't actually state this in there, everyone is very happy for you and Colonel Sheppard. We all know that your loyalty isn't biased. I'll be including that in the petition."
"You're writing it?" she asked.
"I am," Lorne replied with a nod. "Teyla and I felt Dr. McKay, well…"
"He's not as adept with words as most people."
Lorne smiled. "I would never say that."
Before she could reply, they heard the alarms go off. "What's going on?" she asked, heading towards the control room.
"We have an incoming transmission from Earth," Chuck said.
Elizabeth's heart went into her throat. This was an unscheduled call and that was never a good thing. She nodded and spoke up. "Afternoon, General."
"Dr. Weir, I'm afraid I have some bad news."
Elizabeth took a deep breath. 'Oh my God, he's dead!' her mind screamed.
"Colonel Sheppard was attacked by some sort of creature while he was off world. Dr. Lam has given him sedatives to keep him calm, but he's agitated and won't sleep until he sees you."
"I'll be there as soon as possible, General. Thank you. Weir out."
Once the 'Gate shut down there was total silence in the control room. That is, until Rodney came in complaining about something or another. He stared at Elizabeth. Her face was pale and she seemed to be trembling.
Rodney rushed to her side. "What's wrong?"
"What? What about him?" Rodney realized something must have happened to his friend because everyone in the room was just sitting around and Elizabeth looked ready to crumble into a heap on the floor. His eyes widened. "Is he…?"
"No, Rodney," Elizabeth said when she found her voice. "He's alive, but I have to go to Earth. He needs me."
He nodded. "Would you like one of us to come with you?"
"Not right now, Rodney," she replied. "I'll send a message through as soon as I can, though."
Elizabeth entered the infirmary with caution. She wanted to see John but she didn't know if she was prepared. From what General Landry told her, he had been attacked by a lion-like creature and slashed across the chest. He had lost a lot of blood by the time Dr. Lam and her team arrived.
"Hello, Dr. Lam," she said quietly. "How is he?"
"Still highly agitated. I can tell he's exhausted, but we just can't get him to sleep. I've put him on as much sedative as I'm comfortable with, but he's fighting. I'm hoping that once he sees you're here, he'll get some rest."
Elizabeth nodded as she followed Dr. Lam. She was directed towards the back of the infirmary behind a curtained off area. Elizabeth felt sick to her stomach when she heard his weak voice asking for her. She swallowed around the lump in her throat and stepped towards him.
John didn't want to fall asleep. Not until Elizabeth arrived. He was told she was called about an hour ago, but she still wasn't there. He hated acting like a baby, but if he was going to close his eyes, he wanted to see her just in case he never woke up again.
"Thanks for coming," he said weakly. "I just really wanted to see you."
Elizabeth smiled. "You couldn't have requested my presence in an easier way?"
John laughed, but immediately regretted it as spikes of pain flowed like running water.
She kissed him softly on the lips. "Why don't you try to get some sleep? I'll be here when you wake, I promise."
"Okay," he said. "Love you."
"I love you too, John," she replied with a smile.
Elizabeth made certain he was asleep before heading to Dr. Lam's office. "Dr. Weir, come in," she said when Elizabeth knocked.
"He's finally asleep."
"Good," Dr. Lam replied. "I was worried. He's lost a significant amount of blood and he needs all the rest he can get to regain his strength. I was wondering how Dr. Beckett doesn't have gray hair dealing with Colonel Sheppard."
Elizabeth smiled. "You might want to ask him because I have no idea. I know I keep mine hidden with hair dye."
John woke up in some pain, but felt more awake than he had and very happy to see Elizabeth lying on a bed across from him. He didn't want to wake her yet. He just wanted to watch her sleeping peacefully. He never thought he'd find anyone as smart or beautiful as Elizabeth and that someone like her would actually return feelings for him.
John knew that despite the fact that they were stuck galaxies apart he would continue to love and care for her the rest of his life.
"Excuse me Colonel Sheppard," a voice said.
John turned to see General Landry. "Sir."
"How are you feeling?"
"Much better, Sir, thank you." John looked at his hands. "And thank you for," he cleared his throat, "for allowing Elizabeth to come here."
Landry waved his hand in dismissal of the thanks. "I remember when my wife used to look at me the way Dr. Weir looks at you." The General paused a moment. "Colonel, Woolsey would like to meet with you to further discuss your position with the Stargate Program."
"That doesn't sound very fun…"
"Believe me, you'll want to be there!" Landry replied.
John blinked as he glanced over at Elizabeth. He had a feeling that the look of shock on her face mirrored his own. "Not that I'm one to look a gift horse in the mouth," he said, "but what made you change your minds?"
"This," Woolsey replied, handing John a file.
John opened it with curious eyes. He moved closer to Elizabeth so she could read it as well. It was a petition signed by every scientist and military personnel in Atlantis.
John Sheppard was absolutely speechless. True, he knew that he had gained respect by most everyone there, but he didn't dare to hope that any of them would go so far as to have him return especially with the fact that he and Elizabeth were together.
"Colonel, the IOA is willing to give this a try. From what I've read in that petition, the people there trust you both so I believe we can as well," Woolsey said. "So, are you ready to go back to Atlantis?"
John smiled as he looked at Elizabeth. "I'm ready to go home."
"Wait a minute!" Jacqueline called out. John and Elizabeth turned to see her coming up to them, a covered dish in her hands. "John, you need to keep your strength up while you're recuperating so I put some of that pot roast in here for you."
John grinned, accepting the dish. "Thanks, Jacqueline. I really appreciate everything you've done for me."
"No need to thank me, dear," she replied. "Just keep my daughter happy and we'll be even."
"I plan to," John replied.
Jacqueline smiled as she gave him and Elizabeth another hug. "Now I don't want either of you to work yourselves too hard! I expect you to be home for either Thanksgiving or Christmas, is that understood?"
The pair laughed and said, "Yes, Ma'am!"
Carson glanced over at Teyla as they entered the mess hall. Rodney was standing on a chair adjusting the banner that stated, "Welcome Home, John!"
Ronon just shook his head. "You're gonna fall, McKay."
"I'll be fine," Rodney replied annoyed. "I don't see you offering to help me."
Before Ronon could reply, the ladder suddenly teetered and Rodney was falling to the floor. To Carson it seemed to happen in slow motion as he saw Ronon rush over and deftly catch Rodney in his arms. He had to stifle a laugh at the look on their faces when they realized what they must look like.
"Rodney," Teyla said, attempting to hold in her laughter. "Are you all right?"
Rodney glared at them as Ronon set him onto the floor. "I do not want to hear it! That was so not funny!"
"Of course not, Rodney," Carson said.
John and Elizabeth were waiting as the 'Gate dialed when his former team arrived to say their good-byes. "It was fun while it lasted," he told them. "Although I could have done without the animal attack."
"Same here, Sir," Anderson replied.
Angela nodded in agreement. "I think my stomach was in my throat all week after that!"
"I hope you'll keep in touch, Sir," Thyme said.
"I will," John told him as the 'Gate sprang to life. He looked over at Elizabeth, taking her hand. "Ready?"
She nodded. "As I'll ever be."
All was quiet in Atlantis upon arrival. John didn't really think anything of it. "I should probably check in with Carson."
"Good idea," Elizabeth replied. "How about you meet me in the mess hall? I'll get Rodney, Teyla, and Ronon as well."
John wasn't sure if he should kiss her, but Elizabeth made the decision for them and soon he was standing in the middle of the Gateroom blushing like a schoolboy. With a shake of his head and a grin, John headed to the infirmary.
"Colonel," Carson said. "Welcome back."
John smiled, shaking his hand. "It's good to be back, Doc."
"I just finished reading Dr. Lam's report. I see your stubbornness is not exclusive to the Pegasus Galaxy." John only shrugged as he climbed onto one of the beds so could Carson could check his bandages. "Elizabeth tells me you met her family."
"Yeah," John replied grinning. "They're fantastic, especially her nieces and nephew. Although I found out her Dad, General Jonathan Weir was the reason for me not being discharged."
"That's amazing. What are the chances of that?"
John went on to explain that he served under General Weir and even though the man disapproved of John going back against his order, the General realized why and that he would have done the same. Elizabeth also told him that he would write her letters about a certain Air Force major.
Carson wasn't surprised that John endeared himself to such a man. It was also nice to know that he was treated with the respect he deserved.
"Well, Colonel, you're free to go."
"Thanks, Doc," John said. "Would you like join me in the mess hall?"
"They're heading over!" Rodney said. He smiled. This was going to be great and having his best friend back was definitely a plus.
The look of shock on John's face when he entered the mess hall was priceless. He didn't even expect anything. Glancing at Lorne, he shook his head and walked over to him.
"And who said we could have a party?"
Lorne shrugged. "Oh, you know those civilians, Sir. Any excuse to have one. Welcome home."
"Thanks," John replied, shaking his hand. He turned to face everyone there. "Thanks to all of you! I have to admit I don't know what I've done to deserve all of this, but I have never felt more grateful than I do right now."
"You deserve all of this, Colonel," Lorne told him. "Many of us would be dead right now if it hadn't been for you..."
Lorne chuckled. "Or you, Dr. McKay."
Elizabeth walked over to him, taking his hand in hers. "John, everyone here considers you part of our family. The past week and half was hard on us and we are so happy to have you back."
John grinned. "I'm happy to be back."
And somehow, towards the end of the party, John Sheppard had a Polaroid handed to him. He laughed. Blackmail was such an evil thing, but looking at the picture of Rodney in Ronon's arms, it was too great an opportunity to pass up.