Disclaimer: I do not own Stargate: Atlantis or the characters and places therein. I am writing this fic for entertainment purposes only, not for monetary gain of any kind.
Summary: Sometimes your fears lead you to something so much better. JohnElizabeth
Warnings: An oblique reference
Spoilers: fyd818's fic Journey to Forever
Pairing(s): John/Elizabeth (Sparky), a little Jack/Sam
Title: Wedding Dreams
Author: Mama Jo
Author's Note: This is the next in a series of Journey to Forever missing scenes/deleted scenes/fic tags I'm writing. This does contain an excerpt from fyd's aforementioned fic, so thank you, daughter, for allowing me to play in your sandbox and reference your work. I hope you enjoy this newest installment, and thank you for reading. --Mama Jo
"Mom, thank you again for bringing this gown. I don't think I could have found anything else more perfect, do you?" Elizabeth ran her hand over the heavy, dark cream silk. She'd bought the evening dress for some Washingtonian diplomatic function; she couldn't even remember now the exact occasion. Who would have thought at the time that she was actually buying her wedding gown?
"It is lovely, and you look absolutely beautiful in it." Elizabeth's mom carefully slipped the protective plastic bag back down over the elegant full-length sheath with its matching jacket. She carried the dress to the closet and hung it up. When she turned back around, though, her expression was shadowed. "Sweetheart, " she began, then broke off, looking uncertain. After casting another look at the gown, she seemed to come to a decision, for her shoulders went back slightly. "Come sit with me, Elizabeth. I'd like to talk to you."
Elizabeth followed her mother into the suite's sitting area and silently took one of the two armchairs next to the windows. Amusement and apprehension warred within her. What on earth did her mother have on her mind? Surely, oh surely, not the traditional mother/daughter pre-wedding "talk"!
"I was a little surprised when you chose to be married in Colorado Springs," her mom began. "It's so far from Washington, and all your friends and family."
"Not all," Elizabeth murmured in gentle correction. "And after all, John is a graduate of the USAF Academy. Being married in the Cadet Chapel makes sense."
"Yes, yes, I understand all that, dear." Her mom sounded a little flustered, her hands actually twining nervously in her lap. Nevertheless, she leaned forward determinedly. "Elizabeth, I just want to ask if you are sure about this man you're marrying. You and Simon always seemed--"
Elizabeth felt her entire face go hot. "His name is John, Mother," she interrupted, drawing on all her diplomatic expertise to keep her voice level and calm. "Simon has moved on. And so have I. I assure you, I love John with all my heart and soul and being. And he loves me just as deeply. Enough to die for me." Her voice quivered with her intensity. Pausing a moment, she drew a couple of deep breaths to settle herself again. She reached across the intervening space to lay a reassuring hand over her mother's, stilling their twisting. "Never doubt that, Mom. I don't."
Her mom gazed at her for a long minute or two before her own expression smoothed. She managed a smile. "Well, then, my dearest daughter, I do sincerely wish you and John happiness in all the years to come. . ."
The scene shifted abruptly, as dreams do: Elizabeth stood very close to John, the John who had come from the future with such terrible warnings of what was about to occur, and looked up at him in concern. He seemed so much more than four months older than her own John -- goodness, this could be confusing!
"Please, John." She laid a gentle hand on his forearm as she continued to gaze into his tormented hazel eyes. "You're carrying some other burden, a terrible burden, and I can see how it has worn -- is wearing -- you down. If you would just share it with me, perhaps I could help."
He closed his eyes, looking so torn, so much in pain. Her heart nearly broke as parts of his inner struggle escaped his lips. And then his eyes opened, letting her see the real man inside more clearly than he ever had before. He touched her cheek and said the words that turned her entire existence inside out and upside down: "You're the burden I carry."
Elizabeth shifted restlessly and came partly awake, thinking, No, no, I don't want to go there, please don't take me there. . .
The warm, muscular arms cradling her tightened in response to her movements, pulling her in closer. Lips slid caressingly down her cheek, seeking hers. Elizabeth woke fully. "John, my darling John," she whispered. Turning to him, she willingly and joyfully lost herself in loving.
Even as a cadet, John had always been drawn to the Academy's Cadet Chapel. Especially when he was troubled, or struggling with a decision, he would go to an exterior vantage point and gaze at it. The soaring structure pointing into the Colorado sky always seemed to reassure him, even as it urged him to seek it, that his destiny lay in the sky.
He'd just never remotely guessed how far up into and beyond those blue depths it truly would be. Or that only there would he find his true soul mate, the woman who completed him in every way.
Perhaps that was partly why his first marriage had failed so bitterly: On some secret level of his soul, he'd known he'd settled for less than the best.
Not now, though. And that was why he'd approached General O'Neill about having his and Elizabeth's wedding at the Cadet Chapel. It just seemed so -- right.
Plus, as an added bonus, the entire city of Atlantis would also be able to share in the joining of its leaders' lives and hearts. The general had also arranged for the whole ceremony to be broadcast live back to Stargate Command and then through a wormhole opened from the Pegasus galaxy.
And additionally, the whole expedition would not be deprived of the experience of seeing Rodney McKay -- and Ronon Dex! -- in tuxedos.
It was time for the processional lines to form. John's heartbeat quickened as the moment when he would get the first glimpse of his bride approached. The saber bearers fell into formation. Katie Brown, looking both scared to death and exhilarated, took her place next to Ronon. Teyla and Rodney, as maid of honor and best man, were next. And then-- And then--
Elizabeth. His Elizabeth, all elegance and beauty in creamy silk, her dark hair upswept except for the two curls framing her lovely, gently smiling face. . .
John extended his arm to her. As she laid her free hand on it, he took a moment to remember with gratitude the man who had bought this precious chance for him, and to make a solemn promise more binding than the vows yet to come:
She will be the reason for my existence the rest of my days, and I will guard her all those days with my very life.
Elizabeth shifted restlessly within his encircling arms. John immediately wakened, his arms instinctively pulling her closer back against him. A full moon rode high in the Minnesota sky. Its light falling through the cabin's bedroom window softly illuminated the faint creases in her forehead. He instantly guessed the cause. The events that had freed them to spend the rest of their lives together had also left some deep scars.
Raising his head from the pillow to bend over her, he brushed his lips across her cheek, tracing a line from her temple to the corner of her mouth. She woke, and turned toward him.
"John, my darling John," she whispered, her arms wrapping around him in return.
The clear moonlight wheeled slowly across the heavens. Eventually a waning beam found its way through a crack in the living room curtains and glinted off the tall magnum of champagne sitting yet unopened on the rustic coffee table. A card hanging from its neck read:
May All Your Voyages Together Be Happy Ones.
Jack and Sam O'Neill