Tainted Salvavtion

Author: Vicky

E-Mail: vickysg1wanadoo.fr

WebSite: http://perso.wanadoo.fr/vickyfics/index.html

Category: general, angst

Summary: She was alive and well…

Season/Sequel: season 4

Spoilers: Adrift (4-01)

Rating: G

Archives: my website, others ask please, I never refuse

Disclaimer: I own neither the show nor the characters. I don't earn any money; I just do it for fun.

Author's Note: MAJOR SPOILERS for season 4 premiere! I've written it just after having watch the ep, while I was still in the mood, so it's angsty. Many thanks to Jaclyn for the beta job and for the title of this fic!

You have a go !

He entered the private room to find her sitting sideways on the bed, reading. She had been cleared to leave the isolation room but had to stay in the infirmary overnight to be sure she was really okay.

He hadn't gone to see her since she was brought to the infirmary. He had had too much work to do, and if he was honest with himself, he didn't want to see her lying lifelessly on the bed. Just a few hours ago, Keller had told him that she might be dying, and now she was alive and well. And that thanks to the replicators, though he was still not sure it was a good thing.

She looked up from her book and sent him a small smile which he returned. Setting the book on the bedside table, she patted the spot next to her, asking him silently to join her.

"How are you doing?" she asked him as he sat beside her.

"Shouldn't I be the one to ask that?" he replied, nudging her shoulder with his own.

"I'm fine. I'm now part replicator, but I'm fine," she said sarcastically. "You shouldn't have done that. You shouldn't have authorized Rodney and Keller to reactivate the nanites," she reproached him, knowing that with her lying there, he had been the one making the decisions.

"I didn't. They did it while they knew I was against it. At least, until Rodney proved to me that it was really safe."

"So they went against your order."

"Yeah… But I can't seem to stay mad at Rodney or Keller. If they didn't do it, you would have died."

"It might have been better. I don't want to go through that again, John," she admitted in a whisper.

"I know," he just said, draping an arm across her shoulders and bringing her close to him. "You know I'm here for you, right?"

"I know. We're a family," she repeated his words from last time. "A very dysfunctional one, but a family."

"Yeah." He paused, not sure of how to voice his thoughts and feelings. Finally, after a minute of silence during which Elizabeth rested her head on his shoulder, he resumed speaking. "When Keller told me that if you were to survive you wouldn't be the same… I couldn't… I never thought… I care about you, Elizabeth," he blurted out and felt her nodding against his shoulder. "I'm happy that you're alive."

"It might be at too much of a cost. If Rodney's wrong, Atlantis is at risk and you know it can't take another fight right now."

John kept his mouth shut; he hadn't told her about the plan yet because he knew she would be against it, but it was the only solution. They needed those ZPMs, and if getting them from the Asurans was the only one, then they had to do it. He just hoped that Elizabeth would understand that when she finally knew.

"John?"

"Mmh?"

"Promise me one thing, please."

"What?" he asked, curious, but apprehensive at the same time.

"If… If the Asurans managed to somehow take control of me…," she paused for a second, knowing that he wouldn't like what she was going to say. "Promise me you will kill me."

"Elizabeth…"

"Promise me, John. I don't want to harm anyone in this City. Please, John," she pleaded with him, lifting her head from his shoulder and locking his eyes with hers.

"I promise," he finally said, hoping that she would just buy this lie, and that they would find another solution if the time came.

"Thank you," she replied, kissing his cheek and drawing him into a hug.

For the nth time that day, all of them involving Elizabeth, John swallowed hard as he rested his chin on her shoulder. Just a few hours ago, he was afraid that they were going to lose her, and now, despite her being there, alive, he was still afraid that sooner or later, she wouldn't be there anymore.

He just hoped that his guts were wrong for once.

Fini.