The alphabet is something everyone is familiar with (at least we hope so, lol) so why not Sparkify it? After all everything needs to be sparked at least once lol. So 26 Sparky fics are coming your way with titles from A to Z.
Author's Note: Alright, so it's sad. Sorry. Not sure how it came out… This was sprung from a bit from one of the episodes from SG1, where Elizabeth tells Daniel that she remembers watching her dad play poker and smoke burning her eyes. I did some research, but I apologize if something doesn't make sense. Set somewhere season three, before irresponsible.
C is for Compunction – regret; remorse
Doctor Carson Beckett glanced at the man laying in the bed a few spaces down from where he stood over Elizabeth Weir, listening to her breathing. He looked back at her, somewhat sadly.
"When are you going ta tell him?" he asked.
Elizabeth turned her eyes to the Colonels unconscious form, a worried frown on her face. His latest accident had brought him and his team stumbling through the gate, with scrapes and bruises. They had had to rescue him as the local natives had become upset, drugged and kidnapped him. So far the drugs were showing no adverse effects (other than drowsiness) but she was of course still worried. One day he would be in serious trouble.
She bit her lip, looking away. "It's only been two weeks, I don't think I've accepted it myself yet."
He nodded. "I understand lass." He took some notes before continuing. "I'm not going to let this go Elizabeth love, nothing is happening to you on my watch."
She smiled thinly. "If anyone can help me Carson, I know it's you."
He reached out a hand to hers, squeezing it reassuringly briefly.
"He still needs to know lass, he is your second in command after all. Plus he'd want to know soon, and first. He cares too much for you."
"I know, I know."
She cast her eyes downwards at his searching look. He sighed. "Alright lass, let's get somewhere private so I can check you over some more."
She gave John a last look before following Carson.
John caught Elizabeth as he was walking into her office and she was just leaving.
"Hey!" he greeted, "Where are you off to?"
She got a weird look in her (beautiful, he noted to himself) eyes and gave him a smile that seemed weak. "Actually I'm just off to a checkup with Carson."
He frowned at her, more suspicious. He was sure she'd just had a check up with him, not to mention not all checkups were with the head doctor. There couldn't be anything wrong with her?
She seemed to read him easily, and clearing her throat said, "I just have been really tired lately is all, not eating so well either."
He eyed her critically. Now that she mentioned it, she did look a little thinner, and tired. Her voice sounded a bit sore too.
"Don't worry about me John, I'll be fine." It sounded like a lie to her own ears, however desperately she was trying to believe. Her symptoms weren't so obvious yet, but they were there. Damn him for caring.
"Well Ok. But I'm walking you down there, and then afterwards you're meeting me for lunch."
She wasn't sure she could handle that, but nevertheless agreed, on the condition that they'd stay away from such topics as the city and her health.
He agreed for the time being, thinking of pestering her later.
The first thing John saw when he opened his eyes was Elizabeth, who was sitting next to him. However, she was currently in the middle of a coughing fit, bent over, head turned to the side.
He laid a hand on her arms, causing her to jump. Finishing coughing, she turned to him with wide eyes.
"You all right?"
"Yeah, but I think I should be asking you that."
He gave a lopsided grin. "It was just a bullet. I've had plenty of them."
"A bullet to the chest John. It barely missed your heart!"
He started to respond but stopped at her look.
"Er, sorry?" He gave a sheepish look.
She sighed, not in the mood to get angry.
"Please just stop doing that to me?" she pleaded.
"It's not like I could help it much," he stated softly.
"I know….I'm just scared that one day, you won't come back alive." There was an intensity in her eyes now that constricted his insides. "I'm not sure I could handle that."
"You're strong Elizabeth, I'm sure you could handle it."
"John….I guess if that happened I –"
"Elizabeth lass, if you head on behind that curtain I'll be with ye in a minute. Now that I see my other patient is awake I just want to check on him a wee minute." He seemed oblivious to the conversation he had just interrupted.
She cleared her throat. "Of course Carson," she stood up, reluctant to extract her hand from his warm one. She wondered when he'd grabbed it.
When she was out of sight John immediately turned to Carson.
"What's wrong with her Doc?"
"Lad, you know I can't tell you that. And even if I could, I wouldn't."
He scowled. "Just tell me, is she going to be alright?"
He didn't like the look the doctor gave him.
"How about I clear you, and when I'm done, you go talk with her?"
Both men were silent for a moment while Carson checked his vitals.
"Carson, do you think with all the risks we face out here, it would be good to start a relationship with someone on base?"
"Well I'm with Laura aren't I? Fact is, we do pretty good despite odds against us, and I'd rather be with someone I love, than never know what could happen."
John's face seemed just a bit lighter.
"Please just tell me Beth!" he exclaimed heatedly.
She was staring at him tearfully, in a state he'd never seen her in before. "Why John?" she whispered, "It's my business what's wrong with me and I don't want you to know."
"Which tells me it's something bad! Damnit Elizabeth, I already know something's wrong, I just need to know what. I care for you, a lot. Let me help you, let me be there for you."
She sank down onto the bed, head in her hands. He moved next to her and pulled her arms around his neck. He stroked her hair when she started crying.
When she stopped, he held tight, lifting her chin up. "Beth?"
She could see the sadness etched onto his features. And suddenly she felt the need to spill everything, if anyone could make her feel better it would be him.
She took a deep breath, calming her too rapid breathing, and then started to speak. "I have lung cancer John."
He barely reacted outwardly, but she could see the pain and surprise that was creeping in. He didn't say anything, instead just let her talk.
"My dad used to smoke a lot. I remember sitting at poker games with his friends, in a room full of smoke. Had to leave the room several times. Twenty years later Carson diagnosed me with lung cancer from second hand smoke."
"How long ago?"
"Two and a half weeks." Her voice turned soft and solemn. "John, not many people last four months."
"I uh didn't know that." His voice was choked and rough.
"Not all who make it past that survive to five years. There's four stages of the cancer. Carson says I'm still in stage one, which is good. But we're afraid it could spread out from my lungs soon. Treatment hasn't been going so well. This is why I've been coughing, and losing my appetite and being fatigued. They're all symptoms of the cancer."
He touched her face gently. "You're a fighter Elizabeth, you're the strongest woman I've ever met."
"You keep saying that."
"Because it's true. But also know, I'm gonna help you, I'm gonna do whatever I can. I'm not leaving you and you can't leave me."
She only nodded before falling into his embrace again.
John helped her a lot. He made sure she ate and slept, made people back off, had her doing whatever she was able to do, and was in general her moral support. He didn't leave her side often, in fact went on less missions, a fact which bothered her slightly. But she was grateful for the fact that he was there. It helped ease the worry and pain, both mental and physical, greatly in just a few days.
He talked with her about telling her mom, something she decided not to do unless she was critical. She wanted to stay on Atlantis, and knew her mother would like her to spend time her too, if she knew.
He was there when she told the rest of their friends a week later. He was there a week after that when she found out stage two of the cancer had set in.
He was there for her at moments like this, where she coughed so much that she had real problems breathing and almost passed out. She could only thank god as he led her away that there wasn't anyone about in the cafeteria at this late hour. He'd somehow guessed where she was, but they were now heading to her room.
He pushed her down on a chair, forcing her to rest.
"John?" she asked through the tension, "What's on your mind?" He always listened to her, but it was his turn to talk now.
"The radiotherapy isn't working is it?"
She looked down, wondering if possible whether he was in more pain than she was. "No," she said simply.
He leaned close to her. "I've been thinking," he stated, "about something Carson said to me."
"And what's that?"
"That we have to make the most of what we have, and take a chance at love when we can. I want no regrets."
He leaned closer. "I love you Elizabeth Weir and I want you to remember that."
He kissed her softly once, but when he went to kiss her again, she pushed him back. "John… I can't."
He placed his forehead on hers, eyes closed. "Beth."
"I – I am sorry John, I can't handle it at the moment. It wouldn't be a normal relationship, which I'm not so great at anyway. There's just… too much emotion right now and I'm scared. I don't want you to start anything with me John, I want you to concentrate on the city."
"I'm scared too Beth, but we can't let that and emotion come between what could be really great."
She shook her head. "I'm not ruining what we have now. Look, I'm glad you told me how you feel, and I want you to know that I do love you too."
"Alright, if it's what you really want."
"You're saying you have something that can cure me Carson?" Elizabeth asked, shocked.
"Ay, I've been checking into this even before I diagnosed you. I didnae want ta say anything ta you and especially not to the Colonel, cause while we do know a good bit about the device, I'm not sure how effective it would be, or what the side effects could be. "
"Give me the facts."
"Well, it was discovered recently in what seems to be a special med lab, I believe you got the report on that. From what research I've done, I can tell you that the device was always in full function, and it's main purpose is to get rid of the bad cells. It does similar to what radiotherapy does, but it's a bit more complicated than that, ancient and all. Should clear you all up in one go. Logs show pretty good success."
"I want to try it," Elizabeth said firmly.
"Are you sure lass?"
"Yes. We'll do it whenever you think is good, I'll just make sure John is off world at the time. He will not find out about this until afterwards."
He nodded and went to see about preparations.
She was determined to do this. She had been getting worse, was weaker and felt her life slipping, away from her, and away from John. But this was going to work, and when she was completely healthy again, she was going to be with John, and show him how much she loved him.
Within twenty four hours she had been able to schedule a mission for John and his team, one that they personally had to do. Carson said he would be ready for this whenever she was. She'd let Teyla know what was going on (not without a lecture on not telling John) and the city knew she'd be off duty. It was a three day mission.
She had sent them to a planet where they were scheduled to appear (the natives wished them to come once a year) and it had to be the people they originally dealt with, whom they knew personally. It was a tentative relationship and had to be kept, but that didn't mean John had to be happy about leaving.
Right after they did, she headed down to the infirmary.
She felt great! It was just two days later and her lungs felt so much clearer, felt healthier. She could breathe easily. And she couldn't wait to see John again to tell him. But first, she had to get Carson to let her go.
At that moment he came into the room where she had a bed, and he was smiling. She grinned back with a sparkle in her eyes.
"Both your lungs and the rest of your chest are cancer free lass! Now, I wouldn't consider you out of the woods completely yet, it may come back, but you have a real fighting chance now and I see no side effects."
She smiled warmly. "Thank you Carson. How long am I here for?"
He rolled his eyes good-naturedly. "I know you want to tell John and I know he's due back late today," he gave her a knowing look then and she was self-conscious for a moment, wondering if he knew the extent of her feelings. "And I see no reason to coop you up any longer, I know you have some work. But no over doing it! And if John has questions about the therapy, refer him to me."
She hopped down, and after changing quickly out of the scrubs in the bathroom, kissed Carson on the cheek and made her way out the door.
It was about half an hour later when the gate unexpectedly dialed in. She rushed out to the top of the stairs and watched as her flagship team came through. But something was wrong.
Her heart stopped as she saw Teyla and Rodney carrying John, Ronon skidding in after apparently holding down the gate. John was pale and bloody, but unlike the recent two times when he had come through the gate injured, he wasn't going to be getting better in the infirmary. It wasn't hard to see that he was dead.
"No," came her strangled whisper is horror. She started walking slowly down to them, barely believing he was gone. It was such a ridiculous thought now. How could it happen? Those people had been peaceful.
"I'm sorry Elizabeth," Teyla murmured tearfully. "They sold us out to Kolya." Tears stung both women's eyes, and could even be seen in Rodney's. Ronon looked grim and Elizabeth vaguely noted that the control room was deadly silent. Ah the irony in those two words, she thought.
She fell to her knees at his side and placed her hand on his. "But….I'm cured. No, he can't leave now."
Teyla gave a glance at her friend, and brought Elizabeth up into a hug. The two held on to each other, as if for dear life.
She had lost her chance. She thought he'd regret it if they started a relationship, that she would regret it. But now she'd never know what it would have been like. Maybe he had been right.
Elizabeth closed her eyes and saw him smiling at her, the man she loved, as the med team was called in.