Title: No Goodbyes
Date: June 5, 2003
Category: Missing scene; angst
Spoilers: Season 4's 2010
Summary: A missing scene from 2010; Daniel and Janet share a moment alone before their mission begins.
Archive: Gateview; Dan&Jan Archive; anywhere else, please ask
Feedback: Much appreciated. ;)
Disclaimer: Stargate doesn't belong to me.
Author's note: The idea for this story came to me months and months ago, after I'd seen 2010 for the second or third time. I just didn't understand why Janet didn't come back through the gate at the end of the episode to help SG-1 take out the automated defenses. This is the most satisfactory explanation I could come up with. :)
*Many thanks to my betas - my mom (aka Urgo) and Riz. If this thing's readable, it's
because of the two of you, so THANK YOU! :)
P.S. I've learned my lesson, I'll never do it again, I swear! ;)
Jack was taking them all through the plan one more time, step-by-step, making sure everyone was clear on where they were supposed to be and what they were supposed to be doing at any given moment. Sam and Janet were listening, but Daniel was not. He already knew the plan backwards and forwards, inside and out. There was only one thing troubling him now.
He stood watching Janet with a pained look in his sad blue eyes - eyes that had been so happy just a short time ago. But that was before they'd realized that life on Earth as they knew it was a hair's-breadth away from being wiped out, because of something that they had allowed to happen. Back when it seemed as though his life was just the way he wanted it to be.
She was listening carefully to what Jack was saying, the seriousness of the situation reflected in her expression. Her long hair flowed loose about her shoulders and framed her face in a way that, Daniel felt, made her look more beautiful than he'd ever seen her before. This was quite an accomplishment, considering that Daniel had noticed how beautiful Janet was right from the moment they'd first met over 13 years earlier. He'd never have guessed back then, however, that he'd have fallen so deeply in love with this woman, as for the longest time he couldn't see himself truly loving any woman but Sha're.
His thoughts snapped back to the present as soon as he realized that Jack had stopped talking, and that Jack and Sam had turned their attention onto something else momentarily. Daniel swallowed hard, took a deep breath, and seized the opportunity before it passed him by. He moved slightly so as to catch her attention, then said quietly, "Janet?"
"Yeah?" She turned towards him and tilted her face up to look at him in the gentle, open way that always made his heart skip a beat.
"Can I talk to you for a sec?" he asked, glancing over at Jack and Sam significantly as if silently adding the word "alone." The other two still had their backs turned towards them, but that didn't make the situation "private" enough for what Daniel had to say.
"Of course," Janet replied, concern slightly clouding her soft brown eyes.
Daniel lightly touched her arm with his fingertips as he guided her over to the other side of the room. Once they were out of hearing range from the other two, he said gently, "I, uh... I don't want you to come back once you've gone through to Chulak."
"Daniel," Janet said, her voice soft but firm, "don't go getting all masterful on me..."
"I'm not, I just..."
"I'm a big girl, you know. I don't need you to protect me."
"Big?" Daniel teased, laying one of his hands on top of her head, a slight smile playing at the corners of his mouth. There had been a lot of good-natured teasing between them over the significant difference in their height, though it had never actually bothered either one of them for a moment.
"You know what I mean," Janet replied seriously, for the first time not responding to his playful comment with one of her own.
This brought the gravity of the situation down on Daniel's shoulders with renewed force. His slight smile disappeared completely, replaced by a look of sadness and longing once again. "I know," he sighed wistfully. "I just... I don't think I could..."
He stopped, not sure of how to say what he wanted to say. Needed to say. He took a breath and tried again. "Whoever is down in that terminal when the security system kicks in will be the first to die," he said, his expression one of deep pain and his voice quivering slightly with emotion. "I don't want to have to watch that." His eyes searched hers in a silent plea. "Not you."
Janet's heart melted at Daniel's honest confession, knowing him well enough to understand that he was feeling much more emotion than he was allowing to show on the surface. "Daniel..."
"Please, Janet," he interrupted her, his voice so soft and steady now and his eyes so full of gentle pleading that she found herself rendered speechless. "Don't come back," he whispered.
As they stood looking deeply into one another's eyes, they said more to each other in just those few moments of silence than could ever be said in words. Neither of them wanted to break the spell of that moment, as they both knew it might be the last they'd ever share.
After what seemed like half a lifetime, Janet's voice finally seemed to return to her. "Alright," she whispered.
Daniel forced a sad smile. "Thank you," he said softly, then he lovingly touched her face, still holding her gaze with his own. "I know I haven't told you this as often as I should, but... you know I love you, right?" he asked, his voice thick with emotion.
"Please don't, Daniel..."
"No, I should have been there for you more these last few years instead of traveling so much..." Daniel continued, his tone full of remorse and regret.
"Stop talking in the past tense," Janet interrupted him.
Daniel gave a silent, ironic laugh. "Everything's in the past tense now," he said sorrowfully.
This remark pierced Janet's heart like a knife. Tears began to sting her eyes, and she found she had to fight to keep her emotions from taking control of her. The thing was... she knew he was right. They both knew that this was it. Once she stepped through that Stargate, there was no turning back. If their plan did not succeed, Daniel would die but she would most likely live on. If it did succeed... who knew what the outcome would be? Would they cease to exist, one second be there and the next just disappear? Or would they continue on, one of those "alternate realities" they had become so familiar with years ago? Either way, Daniel would most likely either be killed or imprisoned for what he was about to do. Either way, chances were they would never see each other again... at least not in this reality, not in the life they had grown accustomed to.
After another moment of silence, Janet finally spoke again. She could see where this conversation was leading, and she refused to allow it to happen. "I do not want to hear the word goodbye," she said firmly, her voice catching in her throat. "You made your condition, now I've made mine."
Daniel gave a slight nod, still gazing steadily into her eyes. She knew that he understood the reasons for her condition perfectly - "Goodbye" would sound so final, so irreversible, and it would break both of their hearts to hear it said aloud. "I just..." He stopped and looked away from her for a second. His fight to stay in control mirrored her own. "After we do this," he continued a moment later, looking back at her again, "after we've changed our past... I hope... that the 'me' of ten years ago will do things better than I did. You know, I... I kept my feelings to myself for so long... I missed out on so much with you." His voice trailed off into a whisper with his last statement, and she could see that he was thinking over all of the "might have beens".
"I can say the same myself," Janet agreed wistfully, remembering all the times she'd come so close to telling him how she'd really felt about him but had held back from doing so, even told herself she was being foolish in feeling that way, because of their doctor/patient relationship.
Daniel smiled softly, a light of hope faintly glimmering in his eyes again at last. "Maybe with the way events play out for them... maybe the other 'us' will come to their senses a lot sooner than we did."
"I hope so," Janet said quietly, truly hoping so with all of her heart.
Daniel touched her face again softly, leaning down and placing a gentle kiss on her lips. He wrapped his arms around her shoulders and held her as tightly as he dared. "I love you," he said, his voice tender and sincere.
"I love you, too," Janet murmured into his chest. She pressed her hands tightly against his back as though she was never going to let go.
After a few seconds that seemed all too brief, Daniel finally released her, cupping her face in his hands and giving her a brave, tearful smile.
Janet took a deep breath and forced a smile in return, knowing that they'd already been away from Jack and Sam for far too long, and had come dangerously close to allowing their feelings to get in the way of the important work that must be done.
Without saying another word, Daniel and Janet both wiped their eyes and attempted to swallow their emotions. They then headed back over to Jack and Sam, who were quite noticeably trying not to let on that they'd seen the whole thing. They didn't say a word about it, however, and Janet knew they understood how important those last few intimate moments had been to their friends.
Before long, it was time to put their plan into action. Daniel was running on autopilot as he walked through the crowd toward the Stargate terminal, barely noticing Jack as he passed him.
As he neared the railing at the edge of the platform, he automatically began to scan the faces of the people preparing for departure, searching for Janet's. He felt the cold of the rail under his hand as he saw her standing on the escalator, finally snapping him back to a reality that was just as cold. Her face was turned towards him... she was searching for him just as he had been searching for her. Their eyes met for an instant before she quickly looked away, swallowing hard. Daniel could see that she was having a difficult time keeping herself together.
He could sense her hesitation as he watched her descend the escalator and then show her pass to the man waiting below. When she turned back to look up at him again, Daniel was afraid for one irrational moment that she wasn't going to go through with it, and suddenly his heart ached so much for her that he thought it might burst. But instead, when their eyes met, Janet lifted her hand in their customary two-fingered wave. "I'll see you soon," she seemed to say, just as she'd whispered the words to him just days before in that same building when he'd kissed her cheek as they parted after the ceremony.
To the outside observer it was just a casual wave. To Daniel it was everything. He fought to keep in check the rush of love and longing he felt rising in his chest, and tried to keep "acting casual" as he knew he must. Before he knew what he was doing, he'd lifted his hand to return the two-fingered wave... and she was gone.
"I'll see you soon, Janet," he thought as she disappeared through the Stargate after turning one last time at the top of the steps to see the face of the man she loved. The thought filled him with renewed strength and resolve. "In this life or some other... I'll see you soon."
...or is it the beginning?