Disclaimer – I own none of the Stargate franchise. I just like to play with it.
Spoilers – Conversion, First Strike, and Series Four spoilers.
A/N – I started this a few months ago and then put it to one side. I realised that it kind of fits in with the spoilers for Series Four, so here it is. At the moment I'm thinking it will be two chapters, possibly three. It will probably be finished by tomorrow. Please leave me a review and let me know what you think!
Complicated – Chapter One
Teyla was crouching next to some rubble, pulling up handfuls of grass and letting the blades fall between her fingers. They had been on PG4-616 for almost three hours now, and had found nothing except the remains of a civilisation obviously destroyed centuries ago. All that was left was overgrown ruins.
John was sitting on a slab a few feet away from her, watching her closely. She had been getting more and more frustrated the longer they stayed here; he could see it in her face and in the deliberate movements of her hands as she ripped up the grass.
She never said anything, but he knew that her hope rose with every new planet they visited, and he hated to see it dashed every time. They were no closer to finding the Athosians than when they had first gone missing.
John had tried to be there for her the last few weeks but there was very little he could do to help. He had ensured that every field team looked for the Athosians whenever they were off-world and all had had extra missions scheduled specifically for that purpose. His own team were taking more missions than any, but still John felt he wasn't doing enough.
But he didn't know what else to do.
Teyla carried out her duties in the team and in Atlantis as diligently as ever, and to the untrained eye it would seem that the only thing she did differently was train in the gym a little more. However, John could see how much the strain was beginning to show, and that she was training to let out her frustration as much as improving her skill.
John tore his eyes away from Teyla and looked over to where Drs Freeman and Whitely were excitedly examining one of the long-fallen pillars and the writing on them. It seemed that the race who had built this city had meticulously documented their history all over their buildings, and the interesting thing was that… well, John had stopped listening right about there.
John heard the sound of a twig snapping. Teyla's frustration had reached new levels.
"Teyla, why don't you head back to the 'gate?" he said.
She looked up at John when he spoke to her, her brow furrowed in confusion. "Why?" She asked.
Because you need to go to the gym and beat the crap out of someone. That didn't sound particularly good.
"There's not much to do here," he said. It was the truth. "You might as well head back to Atlantis and let Carter know what we've found, and that we'll be back soon."
Teyla looked at him in silence for a moment. John almost expected her to argue, but she stood up suddenly, letting the shards of the twig she had snapped fall to the ground.
"Alright," she said. "I will see you back on Atlantis, Colonel."
John frowned as he watched her walk away. She was obviously pissed off that he had sent her back to Atlantis, but it was for her own good. Babysitting a couple of archaeologists was hardly the best use of her time.
John sighed and looked back over at the doctors. It was hardly the best use of his, either.
Teyla didn't look back as she strode towards the 'gate. Instead she concentrated on crushing as many of the leaves and twigs that lay in her path as possible.
John had sent her away. He had just ordered her back to Atlantis. It was true that there was nothing for her to do on the planet, but there was nothing for Ronon or Rodney to do either, and yet they were allowed to remain. No, he had not wanted her there.
The last few weeks had been trying for her, but she had done her utmost to ensure that her feelings had not interfered with her duties. But John obviously didn't see it that way.
The 'gate was on the other side of a hill, and it took Teyla about twenty minutes to get there. Instead of cooling off on the way there, she was even angrier by the time she arrived.
She raised her hand to start to dial the 'gate and found that it was trembling slightly. Teyla shook her head and sat down on the ground, taking deep breaths to try and calm herself. So much had happened in the last few weeks, and yet there was so little that Teyla could do. She had never felt so helpless. Or so angry.
Teyla sat still for five minutes and then, when she felt a little calmer, she got up and dialled Alantis. The wormhole engaged and she sent through her IDC. With one last, calming breath, Teyla stepped through the stargate.
And stepped back out onto PG4-616.
Teyla blinked in confusion as the wormhole disengaged behind her. She was back on the planet she had just tried to leave. She had stepped through the stargate, she was sure of it. And yet here she was.
She didn't have much time to dwell on it, though, because just then John and Rodney appeared over the crest of the hill. They stopped when they saw her, but soon started walking again.
"Hey Teyla," John called as they neared her. He smiled broadly at her.
Teyla didn't smile back. Her anger had momentarily been replaced by her surprise, but was rapidly returning. John had sent her away, only to follow a few minutes later. Why? And why was he smiling?
"What are you doing here?" John asked.
Rodney spoke up before Teyla could answer. "Could you two do this later?" He asked, starting to dial the 'gate. "I need to get back for a meeting. We're already late."
The wormhole engaged and Rodney sent through his IDC, still talking. Teyla opened her mouth to tell Rodney what had happened to her but he was already walking through.
"Teyla, are you okay?" John asked. Teyla turned to face him, her anger welling up again, but stopped at the look on his face. He looked worried, but there was something else – something in his eyes. He was looking at her with emotion that she had never seen on his face before. He never looked at her like that.
Anything Teyla had thought to say died in her throat, and she nodded dumbly. John gave her his usual crooked smile. "So, why are you here?" He asked. "Looking for me?"
Before Teyla could answer, their radios crackled into life. "Colonel Sheppard, are you coming through?" Chuck's voice said.
John smiled at Teyla again and tapped his earpiece. "Yep, I'm on my way through with Teyla," he said.
"Teyla's with you?"
"Yeah, she's here," John replied, smiling at Teyla again. She was starting to feel very confused – John did not usually smile so much, especially in the last couple of months.
"Come on, let's go," John said, nodding towards the 'gate. Teyla nodded again and they walked through it.
To Teyla's immense relief, when they stepped out they were back on Atlantis. Rodney had disappeared and Teyla couldn't see any other scientists she knew around, so she decided to track down Rodney later. She turned to John to tell him about the 'gate malfunction, but he wasn't looking at her. He was waving to someone in the control room. Teyla looked up and saw that it was Colonel Carter.
"I'm gonna go talk to Sam," John said, turning back to Teyla. "You coming?"
Teyla shook her head. "No, I am going to go and work out," she said.
John stared at her. "Are you sure you're okay?" He asked.
Teyla frowned. "I am fine," she said. "I just want to spar."
John nodded. "Okay," he said, looking a little confused. "I'll see you later."
Teyla nodded and hurried off towards the locker room. She didn't know why, but John was making her uncomfortable. The way he smiled at her was very… well, she wasn't going to deny that she enjoyed it, but it was odd. The only time he had ever looked at her like that was when he had come back from Earth and come to find her and Ronon on New Athos.
The thought of it reminded Teyla of her missing people – as so many things did – and she pushed all thoughts of John away, walking as quickly as possible. She had to stop, though, when she saw Katie Brown and another scientist wheeling a gigantic plant on a trolley.
"Katie… what is this?" She asked. Katie offered her a weak smile but didn't stop pushing.
"The new nutritious soil has got a little out of hand," she said over her shoulder. "We're sending it all through the 'gate before it gets any further."
Teyla nodded dumbly and watched her disappear down the corridor. Shaking her head she pushed open the door to the locker room.
Once she was changed Teyla headed straight to the gym, and she started to go through her drills. She felt her frustration drain away as she moved, and began to understand why John had sent her back early. He knew better than anyone that she hated to be idle, and she could do more for her people on Atlantis than on PG4-616.
After about an hour Teyla paused to have a drink of water and noticed John standing in the doorway of the gym, leaning against the frame and smiling at her in that way again.
"Hey," he said.
Teyla nodded to him and turned away to open her water bottle. That smile did things to her that she didn't want him to notice.
"Hello John," she said. "How long have you been standing there?"
John shrugged and stepped into the gym. "A while," he said. "I could watch you for hours."
Teyla looked back up at him in surprise. She could feel herself blushing, and she quickly sat down on the windowsill with her back to the wall. It wasn't like John to be so… open. What was going on?
John came over to the windowsill and sat down next to her with his back to the window, so her feet were almost on his lap. She drew them a little closer to herself to give him more room.
"I told Sam you'd see her at dinner," he said. "I hope that's okay."
Teyla nodded. "Yes, that's fine," she answered. She glanced out of the window. The sun was only just setting, so she had a couple of hours. Maybe she should try and get some sleep.
Teyla suddenly felt John's hand on her head. She looked round at him and his hand slid over her hair until it was cupping her cheek. He smiled at her again. "I missed you," he said.
Teyla drew a shaky breath, trying to get her suddenly elevated heartbeat under control. This was all too much… she must be dreaming. She had been away for four days, only returning two days ago, but she had been away for much longer than that before. And this… this had definitely never happened before.
She had missed him too, and not just those few days. It seemed that since they had left Lantea they had not spent any time together. So much had happened, and they had both been so busy. But still, he had never touched her like this before. He had never… he did not say things like this.
"John…" she said, wondering how to tell him that she didn't know what was going on. But she couldn't stop her hand rising of its own accord to cover his against her cheek.
Thinking of it afterwards, Teyla was sure that she hadn't seen it coming, but when John kissed her it was as though she had always expected it. She wasn't shocked, like the first time he had kissed her. This time she kissed him back with all she was worth. And this time he didn't stop.
Teyla's arms wound tight around John's neck as he pressed her against the wall. His tongue slid against hers and she moaned into his open mouth, arching against him. John wrapped his arms around her back and pulled her to him. She straddled his lap and kissed him so savagely the back of his head hit the window behind him.
John's response was to bury his hand into her hair, and lean forward into her, deepening the kiss further. Eventually they had to break apart for oxygen, but John barely took a breath before he started kissing her again, this time tracing his lips along her jaw and down her neck.
Teyla gasped and clenched her fists in his hair as John sucked on her neck where it met her shoulder, but she barely had time to acknowledge how good his hair felt finally beneath her fingers - especially with his lips on her neck - when he stood up, and captured her lips again.
They lurched out of the gym, lips sealed together, hands roaming, pausing a few times to press each other up against the walls. Teyla knew that she should stop, but all sense of self-control had fled the moment John had kissed her. All she could do was keep kissing him as she allowed herself to be pulled out of the room.
Teyla didn't worry that anyone would see them – this part of the city was mostly deserted except for the gym and some storage rooms, and only Teyla and John really used this particular gym. However, if John was leading them towards his quarters they were bound to run into someone. She had to stop this.
If only she could.
Before she could think any further, though, there came the sound of a door opening and John pulled her into a room. The door slid shut behind them. Teyla opened her eyes. The room was almost pitch black, and she could only assume that it was one of the many store rooms on this corridor.
John seemingly knew where he was going, though, as he started to kiss her again, gently pulling her backwards into the room. Teyla let herself be led as her hands started to roam under his shirt. The darkness of the room only seemed to sharpen her senses, and she revelled in the feel of his muscles under her hands.
John stopped and removed his shirt, then suddenly scooped Teyla up into his arms and laid her down on what felt like a bed. But why would there be a bed in a storage room? Deciding she didn't care, Teyla reached up to guide his lips to hers again.
Teyla lay with her head resting on John's shoulder, one leg slung over his hip. John's arm was tight around her shoulders, and his hand was stroking her arm.
Teyla didn't know what to say. She had always wanted this with John, but now that it had happened she was frightened. A romantic relationship between them would be complicated, especially now. So much was going on – the war with the Wraith and the Asurans was as terrible as ever, Atlantis had a new home and new leadership, her people were missing…
It would be complicated, yes, but Teyla knew in that moment that it was something she desperately wanted. She and John had always had a special connection, had always been just a step away from this, and now that they had taken that step she knew that she couldn't go back. She only hoped he felt the same.
Teyla lifted her head slightly and peered through the darkness. She could make out the outline of John's profile.
"John?" She said. Her voice sounded impossibly loud in the dark room.
"Hmm?" John replied, turning to look at her. Teyla could just about see his eyes.
Teyla paused, wondering what to say. "What now?" She said eventually.
John leant forward and kissed her on the forehead. Teyla couldn't help a smile escaping at the tender gesture.
"Well," John said. "I have to go… Katie did something to some plants – did you see it?"
John sat up and got out of bed. Teyla also sat up, feeling a little confused. He didn't seem to be regretting what had happened, but he was… he was just leaving. Why?
"Er, yes, I did," Teyla replied.
It sounded like John was pulling on clothes. Teyla swung her legs to the floor and felt around for her own clothes.
"Well, I sent a couple of marines along to help get rid of the things," John was saying. "But I'd better go and see what's going on. Rodney was yelling pretty loudly when I left – he didn't like that Katie had been pushing around those plants while she's pregnant."
Teyla stopped and stared at John. Well, the darkness where his voice was coming from anyway.
"Katie is pregnant?" She repeated in disbelief.
There was a pause. "Yes," John replied, sounding confused. "Teyla, you know she is."
Teyla frowned. She most certainly had not known that Katie was pregnant. Why did John sound so sure that she had?
Teyla concentrated on putting on her clothes.
"Don't forget to meet Sam," John said, his voice muffled by clothing. "She can only stay one night and she really wants to see you."
Teyla paused as she laced up her top. Where was Colonel Carter going?
"This is stupid – I'll put the lights on," John said after a moment. Teyla heard him stride across the room, and she barely had time to wonder how he knew this room so well when the lights came on.
Teyla's jaw dropped. They weren't in a storage room, as she had thought. They were unmistakably in someone's living quarters. John had brought them into someone's living quarters.
But no one lived by the gym, Teyla was sure of it. And this room wasn't like any other living quarters she had seen. For a start, there was not a bed. She saw that what they had been lying on was actually a large sofa, and there were two large armchairs in the room as well. Heavy curtains hung at the windows. A coffee table was strewn with books and magazines and, for some reason, what looked like small multicoloured candles, spilling out of a box labelled 'Crayons'. Several doors led out of the room they stood in.
Teyla looked more closely. There were many other surfaces in the room, and she started to notice the things on them. One was draped with an Athosian cloth very similar to one she had in her quarters. Two large and very obviously Athosian candles stood on top of it. Next to it was a picture in a frame. It was of her and John. They had their arms wrapped round each other, and were smiling widely at the camera. Another frame next to it held a picture of a small boy, with darkly tanned skin and black hair. And John's cocky smile.
Teyla shook her head and took a step backwards. She backed up into another, small table next to the door. Spinning around she saw another picture, this one of herself with a small baby in her arms. She was standing on one of the balconies of Atlantis and smiling down at the infant she was holding.
Teyla looked up at John. He had pulled on his t-shirt, and was staring at her, looking concerned. "Are you okay?" He asked.
Teyla opened her mouth to say something, but she couldn't think straight. This couldn't be real. It just couldn't.
John started to take a step towards her, but stopped, frowning. He tapped his earpiece. "What?"
He listened to what was being said to him over his radio, and Teyla saw his eyes widen. "What?" He replied, sounding completely disbelieving. "Are you kidding?"
John frowned in confusion at Teyla for a split second, before suddenly turning away and picking up his gun holster from where it was lying in the middle of the floor. Before Teyla could even think about moving he took the gun out of the holster and pointed it straight at her head.
"Alright, who are you?" He demanded.
Teyla stared at him and took an instinctive step back. He was standing too far away for her to disarm, and she didn't have a weapon.
"That was Chuck," John said. "Teyla just came through the 'gate."
"So, I ask again – who the hell are you?"
Teyla stood there, her hands in the air, her mouth open, not knowing what to say. What the hell was going on!? This had to be a dream. It had felt so real, but this… this absolutely couldn't be. And who was this 'Teyla' that had come through the 'gate?
Teyla got the answer to that question almost immediately. The door to the quarters slid open and Teyla's eyes widened as she herself entered the room. If she hadn't known that it wasn't her, there was really no way to tell. This Teyla was wearing full off-world gear, and was slightly out of breath as though she had been running.
Her eyes swept the room and she turned to face John. "John, put down the gun," she said calmly.
John stared at her in confusion. "Teyla… what the hell?" He said.
The new Teyla took another step towards him and put her hand on his arm. "John, put down the gun," she repeated. John's eyes flickered to Teyla, who was still staring at the copy of herself, and then very slowly lowered the gun.
The new Teyla nodded and then turned to look at Teyla, who slowly lowered her hands.
"It's okay," said the new Teyla. "Don't panic, there's an explanation for all of this."
"Teyla, what's going on?" John demanded. "Who the hell is this?"
The new Teyla shot a glare over her shoulder. "It is me, John," she said. "From four years ago."
Teyla's eyes widened as John's jaw dropped. "Oh my – oh god…" John sank down into one of the armchairs and put his head in his hands.
Teyla forced her eyes back to the copy of herself, who was smiling slightly. "I know you are very confused right now," she said. "And I am afraid I do not have time to explain properly now. Very basically – you are in the future. Four years in the future."
"The future?" Teyla repeated. "You must be joking."
"Look around," the other – future – Teyla said. "You know it is true. But really, time is short. We must leave now so that you can get back. Follow me."
She opened the door again and gestured for Teyla to follow her. Teyla hesitated for a moment, taking one last look around the room, and at John. He looked up at her and managed a weak smile.
"Sorry in advance," he said. "You'd better go."
Feeling more confused than ever, Teyla followed her future self out of the room.
The future Teyla hurried down the corridor towards the transporter. "First we'll go to the locker room to get your things, and then we have to go back to the Beta Site," she said as they got in.
Teyla frowned. "The Beta Site?"
Future Teyla smiled. "PG4-616," she said. "Come on, we only have a few minutes."
They stepped out of the transporter and hurried to the locker room. Teyla quickly changed out of her – future Teyla's – civilian clothes and back into her uniform, and then followed her back to the 'gate room.
No one really paid attention to them as they entered the room as Katie and a trolley-full of giant plant were standing before the stargate, which was dialling. However, Rodney hurried over to them as they entered.
He handed a timer to Future Teyla. "You've got two minutes," he said. He looked at Teyla and smiled slightly. "Good luck!"
Teyla smiled weakly. "Thank you, Rodney," she said. Future Teyla nodded. "Yes, thank you," she said.
The wormhole engaged and Chuck's voice sounded over the 'gate room intercom. "Alpha Site dialled," he said. Future Teyla waved up at him and smiled at Teyla.
"Come on," she said. "We must hurry."
Teyla took one last look at the chaos of the giant plant in the 'gate room and the future Atlantis, and then followed her future self through the event horizon.
To be continued…