Disclaimer: I own neither the show nor the characters. I don't earn any money; I just do it for fun.
Author's Note: Written for my Sparktober Bingo Card, for the prompt 'friendship'.

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Under different circumstances, they wouldn't be friends, they both knew that. Despite his upbringing, they didn't run in the same circles back on Earth. Weren't it for the Stargate Program, their paths would have never crossed.

But still, from day one, they just clicked. They understood each other, and sometimes, they didn't even need words to communicate. Usually, this kind of silent conversations came from years of working around each other. But with them, it took less than a month.

It was so sudden for them that they even managed to freak Rodney out, once.

Sometimes, you're just destined to meet some people, and maybe for them, it was one of those times. Sometimes, you just have to meet the person who would help you grow up, change. And changed they did since they have known each other, even though neither of them meant to.

They had learned over the years that friends were always there for you when you needed them the most. And tonight, she needed him. He sought her out, knowing that he had to be there for her.

He finally found her on a secluded balcony, far from the inhabited parts of the City. He wanted to berate her for coming to a still unexplored part of Atlantis on her own, but he couldn't find it in himself to do so. And deep down, even though he didn't know the City well enough, yet, he was sure that Atlantis wouldn't have allowed Elizabeth's presence in this part if it was dangerous.

Now that he found her, he wondered for a second if he was right to be here, if she even wanted him to be here. But then, he remembered that friendship also meant that you have to be there, even if you feel like you're unwanted.

Crossing the threshold, he let the door close behind him, and walked towards her.

"You ok?" he asked, as he sat down beside her on the balcony floor.

"No."

"Listen..."

"I shouldn't have allowed this," she interrupted him before he could try and comfort her. "I shouldn't have just ignored all my principles, all my beliefs, only because we're on our own, completely cut off from Earth. No matter what, the Geneva convention should always apply, even where the Wraiths are concerned."

She paused, trying to keep the tremors out of her voice, even though she knew he heard them already. He didn't say anything though, and she appreciated it more than ever.

"I don't know who I am anymore, John," she whispered.

"You're Elizabeth Weir, a woman who questions her decisions," he replied without hesitation. "A woman who isn't afraid to lead an entire expedition into the unknown, leaving everything and everyone she knows behind. A woman who chose to trust an Air Force Major whose superiors said he wouldn't listen to direct orders. And this Air Force officer couldn't be more grateful for the second chance you granted him," he concluded.

She looked up at him at this moment, and she could see that he meant every single word he said.

She felt her heart constrict in her chest for the man sitting beside her. She hoped for the day she would finally be able to tell someone on Earth how much she owed him.

"Everyone deserves a second chance, John."

"Exactly," he said, smiling widely at her words. "You deserve a second change, too. You're allowed to make mistakes, too. It happens to even the best of us. No one is immune, and certainly not you."

She took a deep breath. She knew that he was right, but it was hard to admit, even to herself, that she had the right to be wrong, too. But as the leader of the expedition, the one person everybody else looked up too, she wanted to hold herself at a higher standard. But she found out the hard way that she couldn't.

Still, maybe all wasn't lost, and there was still hope for her. Maybe she could still be the same woman she was on Earth.

"Thank you, John. For being here. For being a friend to me."

"Always."

She had thought when she agreed to lead the expedition that it would prevent her from making friends. She thought she wouldn't have someone to talk to, someone to share her burden with, given her position at the head of the expedition.

But what she didn't count on was John. He proved to her that it was possible for her to forge bonds, have friends.

Even though they didn't know each other for long, she knew she could call him a friend. And there was no doubt in her mind that the bond between them would last. She knew that, even though it would be tried by challenges, they would walk through them, and they would remain friends.

Fin.