Title: G is for Gate (The One, Two Story)

Author: Jedi Buttercup

Rating: PG/K+

Disclaimer: The words are mine; the worlds are not.

Summary: One, Cam thinks with a touch of wonder, as he steps through the event horizon. 350w.

Spoilers: Stargate SG-1 9.1 "Avalon, Part I"

Notes: For SG-1 gen alphabet soup: Cameron Mitchell, and the roots of the counting habit referenced in "200".

One, Cam thinks with a touch of wonder, as he steps for the first time into the shimmering disc of an event horizon.

He's read about it. Seen pictures, in files husbanded for self-reward after endless rounds of physical therapy. Heard stories from those who've taken this step before him. But none of that compares to actually making the journey: to crossing millions of miles in the time it takes to take one breath.

He shivers as he steps out the other end, drinking in the air of an entire other world. He might as well have put on a pair of seven league boots; it's that magical, and that much a fulfillment of an impossible dream. Even if he's not so much on SG-1 as he is SG-1 at present ... he's just stepped through a Stargate to the cradle of an entire alien civilization. How amazing is that?

He takes a moment, staring around at the ornate columns of Dakara and the robed Jaffa with the gold tattoo waiting for him, taking a mental snapshot for posterity. Teal'c, in his native setting: somehow even more impressive than he'd seemed in camo and Kevlar back on Earth. Though there's nothing even remotely yielding about him, despite his nod of welcome- yeah, Cam's not going to get the answer he wants from him today.

But that's all right. Cam knows better than anyone the value of persistence; he wouldn't even be there if he didn't. Showing up is about affirming his intention, not winning. It would have been nice, mind you; but he's just spent two years living life one milestone at a time, commemorating each setback and success with inches forward on his mental metric. It's nothing new.

He enjoys the conversation as long as it lasts, then returns to the Gate and watches the event horizon whoosh into being.

"Two", he murmurs, remembering the way it felt under his hand: warm, living metal, relic and symbol of a civilization long gone to dust.

The journey of a thousand miles. He smiles wryly to himself and crosses into the blue.