Title: The War of the Worlds
ARCHIVE: DJA, HELIOPOLIS, TIGERMOTH CARTOUCHE
CATEGORY: POV, Thoughts, Angst, Romance, AU
PAIRINGS: Daniel/Janet Sam/Other
SUMMARY: A warning from the other side.
DISCLAIMER: SG characters not mine
Notes: Feedback is compulsory J
WAR OF THE WORLDS
By the time that you have finished reading this sentence, another version of yourself will have skimmed on to the next page. Another version of yourself will click on the link, and find that the server is not connected. One of the downfalls of using Geocities, I presume. And yet another you will not even give these words a second glance, choosing to wander idly through the internet without ever wondering what these words did say. Another, more unfortunate version of yourself will power up your computer, feel dizzy, keel over, and die.
Congratulations on making it this far. My name is Janet Fraiser, and this is the story that I have to tell.
I never used to believe in 'What If…'. I always placed my mind in the 'Here' and 'Now'. Several things have happened to me in this lifetime to deviate me from that previous path. I now believe that every little decision that we make, our every move, result in parallel universes which spin off into time. Each of those new universes that we inadvertently create, give birth to new universes of their own. And so, the process continues. An infinite number of lives. Each one fragmenting on to a billion different planes of existence. Each parallel exploring every 'What If…' that you or I could possibly imagine.
In my reality, I am in hiding. This Earth is sentenced to a lingering, yet painless death. Every one of my closest friends are dead. Not at the hands of the Goa'uld, but at the hands of the Aschen. We met this race ten years ago. At the time we thought they were our saviours. They had everything that the people of Earth could ever ask for. Advanced weapons and technology, better medicines, better everything. They were even willing to help us fight the Goa'uld. And what is more, they were willing to do it all without cost.
The Aschen, we believed, were a godsend. They killed off the Goa'uld by creating a retrovirus which specifically attacked the Goa'uld genome. The President was thrilled with their result. Earth was immediately signed into an alliance with the Aschen, and the truth about the Stargate programme was revealed to the public eye.
The SGC became famous overnight. The media hounded us wherever we went. An instant celebrity myself, I now knew what it was like, and pitied those movie stars whose private lives I had ruthlessly perused over in tabloid magazines.
The Stargate programme was shut down, and the SG teams disbanded. You would have expected that we would have stuck together, SG-1 and myself, that is. We were such great friends before the Stargate programme shutdown. We went to movies, had cookouts, and had established a firm friendship whose bonds we believed could never be broken. It turned out to be exactly the opposite, in fact. We drifted apart, seldom keeping contact with each other. After Sam married Joe, Jack took off to his cabin in the woods, never to be heard from again. Teal'c had long since returned home to Chu'lak, and Daniel moved to London to teach archaeology at one of their prestigious universities, a whole wide ocean away.
So, where did that leave me? You wonder. Well, I ended up establishing a family doctor's practice in Washington DC. I was happy, but I had never felt quite so alone. My daughter Cassandra was away at University, and the friends that I held dear had drifted away. Not even the media wanted to talk to me anymore. I was just another human being enthralled by the Aschen race.
As the years went by my job was made redundant. The Aschen had developed machines that could cure cancer and mend broken bones. People no longer needed me to set their arms or listen to their heartbeats. I was simply now, a referral doctor. People came to me for advice as to which Aschen doctor would be the best to cure their ill and make them well again.
Three years and four months ago, Sam contacted me at home and invited me over for dinner with herself and Joe. I gladly accepted, not having heard from my friend since we drifted apart so many years before.
Sam had two surprises in store for me that night. The first was the news that she and Joe had decided to start trying for a family. I was so happy for them, and wished them all the luck in the world.
The second surprise she had, was Daniel. He was still as young and as handsome as the last time I had seen him. The anti-aging vaccine that the Aschen had developed did wonders at keeping the years at bay. My lonely heart leapt for joy at seeing him again. I had always had a place in my heart for him, but my respect for his dead wife Sha're kept me from developing those feelings any further.
We sat around the table and caught up on each-other's lives. Sam was working on the 'Jupiter Ignition Project', which aimed to turn the planet Jupiter into a star. Daniel told us about his life in London and the many joys he got from teaching potential young archaeologists the secrets of his trade.
We sat and talked until it was almost midnight. We said our goodbyes and Daniel walked me to my car. That night, he asked if I would care to see him again. He was going to be in DC for a while, to give a talk at an archaeological conference that had speakers coming from all reaches of the universe.
I believe that the following decision that I made that night could have resulted in a million 'What Ifs' that broke away and spun off into the universe on different tangents. Had my answer to his question been no, I would have continued on in my life, alone. Constantly kicking myself in the butt, regretting that I passed up the chance to start a relationship with Daniel.
To this day, I thank my lucky stars that I accepted his offer. It was the turning point for the both of us to begin on a wonderful new romance. My daughter, of course, was thrilled that I had found new happiness in my life. Sam, when we told her, was overjoyed. Admitting to us that she had seen it coming at us for a long, long time.
Everything was perfect from then on. I had Daniel. I had my 'job'. My daughter was doing superbly at university, making me proud to have raised the trembling alien girl into the wonderful, promising young lady that she has become. Life, with all its twists and turns, could not possibly have thrown anything at us which could destroy our joy. Daniel loved me, and I adored him. We talked lightly about marriage, thought about what our kids would look like.
Two years after he had moved in with me, we travelled back to London for a holiday. He showed me the university where he had been teaching, and then took me around on a tour of the city's sights. St Paul's Cathedral, Big Ben, the palace, and so much more.
He took me walking one day in the park just next to Buckingham Palace. The spring sunshine shone down on our backs. His smile warmed my heart. Looking back, I do believe that I could feel the many separate universes snapping off and spiraling into time on that warm, spring day.
In the middle of the park, under an old knobbed oak tree, Daniel Jackson dropped down on one knee and proposed. A thousand universes sparked into existence then, each one filled with the 'What Ifs' of that moment in time. My heart was filled with joy. How much, I asked myself, did I love this man? The answer, I was delighted to find, was, and still is, unfathomable.
We spent the rest of that day walking though London, excited at the knowledge that we would spend the rest of our days together in what would hopefully be wedded bliss. We returned back to our hotel that evening, and made sweet, slow love before falling asleep, content in each-other's arms.
The next day we returned back to the 'States. It was the Tenth Anniversary of the Earth's alliance with the Aschen race. SG-1 had been requested specifically to attend and receive the Presidential honour. Daniel and I thought it would be an excellent opportunity to tell all our friends of our engagement.
We were both disappointed that O'Neill did not attend. We decided then that our news could wait a little longer until all five of us could get together, as friends.
After the ceremony, Sam tried to talk me into spilling my happy secret. "So?" She said. I remember her impish grin. "What?" I asked, feigning innocence. Sam elbowed me gently in the arm. "What was that?"
"What was what?" I quickly turned the focus of the conversation onto her. "Tell me Sam, are you and Joe…?" I let my question trail off. Sam's smile melted from her face, replaced with the disappointed shaking of her head.
I couldn't believe it. They had been trying to get pregnant for three years now. I offered to give her a second opinion, and she reluctantly complied. The results that I found from that test changed our lives forever. Every single 'What If' that could have been, raged off furiously into space. If Sam really was okay, then everything would have worked out just fine. She and Joe would have returned back home and kept on trying. If, perhaps, I suspected that my results were wrong, I would have gone back to my laboratory and run the tests again. The 'What Ifs' were immeasurable.
The 'What If' that happened in my world, however, was not one that I could have ever dreamed possible. Not event in the wildest of my imagination. And trust me, I can be pretty creative when I put my mind to it.
On that fateful day, we found out that the Aschen had been sterilising humans in secrecy for the past ten years. The human race was slowly but surely heading towards the Sixth Great Extinction, at the hands of an alien race.
What death could be more painless, and yet, so excruciating, than having to live the rest of your life knowing that, for every breath you breathed, the human race crept forever closer to the brink of extinction? That same evening we met up at a restaurant and shared the news of the Aschen's betrayal with Daniel and Teal'c. It was like old times again. We, as a team, formulated a plan that could help us save the world.
We were going to send a message back in time to ensure that this particular 'What If' would never occur. It was certainly risky, but we knew that we would have to make it work.
As the hours grew closer to our deadline, we suddenly realised the depth of what we were about to do. This 'What If', where Daniel and I had ended up so happily, was destined to come crashing down around us in a matter of hours. I made love to Daniel over and over in the silent hours before the morning. We both knew that this was to be our last time together. All our plans, all our hopes and dreams, were about to be thrown to the wind. Never to be dreamed of again.
I kissed him goodbye for an eternity in the afternoon before I left for Chu'lak to deliver the coordinates to Teal'c. We sealed our lips together in love and passion, knowing painfully that this would definitely be the last time that we would see the other alive. Reluctantly, we broke the kiss, due to our bodies need for oxygen. He held me close. I still remember the soft wool of his vest where it rubbed against my cheek, and the gentle murmur of his "I love you" in my ear.
With a heavy heart I left the circle of his arms and stepped onto the escalator, turning before I reached the Stargate stairs to give him a final wave goodbye. He waved back with a smile, and I turned around, never looking back, through the Stargate to Chu'lak. I had another world to save.
I returned, two days later, under disguise. My heart wept when I learnt that Sam, Jack, Teal'c and my beloved Daniel had died in their attempt to send their message through the 'Gate. Joe had been arrested for being an accessory to the act, and my daughter was being questioned as to my whereabouts. I couldn’t even tell her that I was still alive. The Aschen police were after me too. They wanted to kill me because I knew what they were trying to do. My only condolence was the knowledge that our note had gotten through to the other side.
Now, dear reader, I must go. I can hear the footfalls of Aschen police as they draw nearer to this room, where I sit in front of the Quantum Mirror, hoping to save another 'What If' from suffering my world's terrible fate.
I will leave you now with this warning, which I deplore you please to take to heart.
Do not, under any circumstances, travel to the co-ordinates 'P4C-970'.
All the best.