Stargate SG-1 fic: Last Chance (6)
Title: Last Chance
The cockpit was dark. Almost as dark as the cargo hold with it’s one dim emergency light. It was obviously still night on this planet, the viewscreen mostly blacked out. No, not by nightfall… snow. Jack took a few steps towards the control area. The wind rushed past the hole above sucking precious air from inside. A pile of snow covered the overturned pilot’s chair and most of the middle control panel Jack had been messing with the night before. Outside the snow was blowing so hard it created a wall of white. He shivered violently. This was bad. When they crashed five days ago it had been cold, like late fall in Colorado but nothing more. He had looked around but found nothing of interest. Just trees and a grassy plain. It actually didn’t look much different than, say, Kansas or Nebraska. Tall wheat like fields, stands of evergreen trees dotted with some kind of deciduous tree in between.
But as he waited for Carter to wake up the temperature had continued to drop, the wind howling like a banshee every few moments. And now snow. And it looked like a lot. If Carter couldn’t work her magic and get some more power and heat to the back their food problem wouldn’t make much of a difference. Part of him hated that he expected so much of her. On one hand it had proved to be a sound course of action in the past but the constant pressure must be maddening for her. They both knew there was little they could do and yet he still expected a miracle from her. And, she most likely, did, too. Why else would she apologize for failing when she hadn’t done anything wrong.
A gust of wind pushed a new layer of snow into the cockpit. It fell with a thump on top of the rest. Small, lighter flakes fluttered in the draft before finally settling on top. Jack hugged his arms around him, his fingers, nose and ears already going numb, his cheeks tingling from the frigid air. This was so bad. Antarctica bad except without so many broken bones. He flexed the fingers of his busted hand where they were tucked under his other arm. They hurt but not as bad as the night before. None of it would matter though without heat and food.
Another blast rocked the ship slightly sending more snow wafting down. He couldn’t remember a time he felt so screwed. Even in Antarctica there had been the hope that Carter would get the DHD working and they would be just moments away from safety and then, later, he hoped Carter would follow his order to find help for himself. Not that she had, not that he really had expected her to. She was too loyal.
“Something that’s gonna get her killed,” he muttered to himself as he kicked at the snow pile. So very screwed, he though. There had been no time to put out a distress call, the attack happening so fast. After the crash Jack couldn’t get the communications working and by the time Carter had come to there had been little power left and heat had been more important. He had no idea what he was doing. And he was scared. He could admit that to himself. He glanced over his shoulder at the closed door. This was so not how he thought it would end and there were so many things left unsaid. Well, he could do something about that, couldn’t he?
He shook his head. Things like that only happened, only worked, in the movies. Or silly romance novels, he thought, spying Carter’s forgotten book half buried in the snow. He knocked it loose with the toe of his boot and picked it up, flicking snow from the cover. It was damp, a little torn but, otherwise, in good condition. He stared at the cover for a moment still wondering what Carter could see in reading crap like this. The stories were always so… unrealistic. Sara had read them and Jack had always felt horribly inadequate when compared to the heroes of the novels. He wasn’t the kind of guy to get gushy romantic on a woman. Bring her flowers after he screwed up? He could do that. But plan a whole day around a romantic moment like making love in a candlelit room with rose petals all over the bed… so not his thing.
Jack flipped through the pages finding the spot Carter had dog-eared the last time she stopped, before the attack. He read the first paragraph:
Liam wrapped his strong arms around Morgan, pulling her tight to his heaving chest. She shuddered in his grasp, her breath catching in her throat. She was still crying but Liam knew how to end that. He slid a finger under her chin and lifted her face to his. She blinked at him with teary eyes. He kissed her softly on each eyelid, the tip of her nose, down the side of her face to nibble on her ear. Morgan’s legs felt weak, her body melted into Liam’s touch. A gasp escaped her lips when his mouth pressed against the tender underside of her ear, the kisses trailing down her neck. “I love you,” he murmured into her skin, “more than life-
Jack slapped the book closed. His stomach couldn’t take reading any more of it. How in the world could Carter stand it? He frowned staring down at the book in his freezing fingers. Maybe that’s what she wanted. He really couldn’t picture Carter wanting to be swept off her feet. She was way too strong and independent for that. But, then again…
He shook his head. He could never be that sappy and Carter would think he lost his mind if he even tried. There was no point staying in the cockpit. It was dark and cold and there was nothing left for Jack to do. He glanced around one last time before opening the cargo door.