It seems like only yesterday his world had changed.
"Sorry, TJ..." he is saying, walking into their limited medical bay. Even at first glance, he knows something is wrong. There is something new behind her eyes, something unsettled and secret, yet still yearning to be said aloud. Not like he has to wonder for long what she is hiding, as she cuts in while he is still speaking, harnessing all the courage she can to say only two words:
From that moment on, everything was different. First, it was the shock that got him. He'd thought he'd missed his chance to be a father, that he'd sacrificed that when he'd committed himself to the Air Force. Just one more thing he'd let go in order to be the best he could be...
Once he'd been able to wrap his head around that, he became painfully aware once more just how far they were from everything and everyone they'd ever known. Destiny was no place for a baby. This whole new galaxy was no place for a baby, in his opinion. They were barely surviving out here, struggling daily for the bare essentials, let alone any chance at achieving some sort of creature comforts. He couldn't bear the thought of bringing any child – let alone his own – into this kind of place.
Eventually, though, he'd even overcome that. Once he saw how happy the crew was to welcome a new life aboard the ship, he'd started to change his mind. And once he saw TJ start to change, start to smile again, he knew he'd been converted. He was about to become a father, and somehow, strangely, he was excited about that. He'd helped to create a new life, a new person, one who he could teach to walk, to run, to play, and to learn.
And then, as quickly as his world had changed, it ended.
A single gunshot, fired into the abdomen of the woman he'd once (still?) loved, destroyed all the hope he'd slowly started to gather about their fate out among these alien stars. One shot, and it all came crashing down. He would never get to hear his child's first cry, see her smile, watch her crawl and play and live. Instead, he was left with nothing but the memory of what could have been, what should have been.
Everett Young couldn't help the tears that finally escaped his eyes, trailing down his cheeks and rolling off of his chin. He clutched his glass even closer to his body, relishing the numbing effect the alcohol was having on his brain and his heart. With every drink he took, the pain seemed a little duller, a little more bearable. Hopefully tonight, no one would bother him, and he could drink himself to sleep, sleep without dreaming about a life that would never be. The last thing he wanted to do was to dream of a world where everything was right, and then wake up to a reality where everything was so very wrong.