Author's note: Thank you so very much to those few of you who have been faithfully keeping up with this story. There's only one more chapter and that will be the epilogue with chapter 14 and I hope to have that posted by the end of the week. I know there are a lot of questions still unanswered but I leave that to your imagination. The purpose of this story was simply to introduce Detective John Sheppard to Teyla Emmagan. :)

I hope you've enjoyed this story. Thank you!

I own nothing of SGA. I wish I did because then the show would still be in the air.

Part 13

She rose from behind a wall of smoke like a scorned woman with a cause. Immediately, he noticed the bruises forming on her perfectly sculpted face, realizing the explosion must have thrown her somewhere at some point into space. Abruptly, he knew he had been terrified, thinking he'd never see her again.

And there she was, coming from the fire, carrying a young one in her arms, soothing his cries with her hands.

He went towards her, as if his life depend it on it. He wasn't sure, but he could have sworn that she walked towards him just as anxiously as he did towards her. With each step, slowly closer to one another, they neared, until finally they both stopped only inches away from each other. For a long moment neither one of them thought of anything to say to the other, but he could feel her presence within his mind, and he nearly fell forward at the realization.

Suddenly, she leaned forward, and gestured her forehead to meet his, and their foreheads kissed.

Then, like most moments like this in his life, it disintegrated. They each stepped back, back into the world, into a reality that was still unknown to them both.

She looked down into the child in her arms, and rocked his body in a soothing manner.

"This is my son, Torren." She added with a tearful smile.

Instantly, he felt too many regrets.

"And I am..."

"Teyla." He couldn't explain how he knew, but it all made sense to him now.

She smiled and all his worries vanished.

"Yes. I am Teyla Emmagan, daughter of Tagan, leader of the Athosians." Straightening her stance, her posture spoke authority and honor. Yet, her eyes shone bright with loyalty, trust and much appreciation, and it was all geared towards him.

How he managed to gain that level of respect from her, he'll probably never truly know. Yet, he knew without a doubt that he felt just the same for her. And it terrified him.

John Sheppard had never experienced anything like this before. He's lived his life in a haze, following and sometimes not following orders from others, never really understanding the meaning of life to the fullest and never really finding any purpose or reason beyond just living for the next day.

But she is different.

And not just because she is beautiful, not just because she could clearly whip his ass in more ways than one, and not simply because she could read his mind like he could recite all the parts of a jet-figther.

No, there's more, but for the life of him, he couldn't explain it. And right now, he didn't have to. He just knew she was real, and she had come to him, just as he had come for her. A common union that was inexplicable, but so very real.

Her coming forward back into society was going to shake the ends of the earth and the sands of time. No, he couldn't foresee into the future, nor did he ever believe in any destiny, but only the one that he made for himself. Yet, already in his mind he was plotting ways to rid of the Wraith, to protect the Athosians at all cost, and to fight alongside her for a very long time, and if he was lucky, maybe even more.

Their eyes met and there was an understanding. A newly found friendship, and trust and hopefully later, something much more. He secretly promised that only to himself. And yet, by the look in her eyes, he could see something similar within her eyes, as well.

As the world around him came into view, the gathering of a people started to encircle them.

"You have earned both my friendship and that of my people, John Sheppard. Our paths have been destined since before our time and we are called now to unite and fight a war for the cause of humanity. I've watched your people, and I've watched you for much longer. We will triumph. Together, we can defeat the Wraith and perhaps," She leaned closer for him to hear only, "a peaceful world together."

John Sheppard smiled, knowing that from that moment on, his life would never be the same.