blue flamingos

Five things Jack left in Colorado

Fandom: Stargate SG1

Category/Rated: Gen, G

Year/Length: 2009/ ~567 words

Disclaimer: No, I don't own them, for which I should think they're profoundly grateful.

Author's Notes: Originally posted at [info]sg1_five_things

Feedback: Yes please. Even if it's bad. Especially if it's bad.



John Sheppard. Not that Sheppard's in Colorado when Jack leaves, but Colorado's the closest he can get. Not that Sheppard is a thing, either, but there's something about him, something that feels familiar, connected, to Jack, even when they're still in Antarctica and he's trying to persuade Sheppard to join the SGC. Maybe that's all it is, Sheppard's uncertainty when Jack's not sure he wants the post he's being offered either. Maybe it's flying, the gene, the black mark, that he looks at Sheppard and sees himself, if he'd lived his life a little differently.

He's pretty sure it's not.



The stargate. Or, not the gate, but what's on the other side. He's no fool, he knows he's getting to the point where he's too old to keep going on missions, but with the gate right there, down the corridor from his office, there were a lot more chances for someone to come by and say, "Hey, General, don't suppose we could borrow you to come explore this planet, never before seen by anyone from Earth, could we?"

That doesn't tend to happen in Washington.



The keys to his cabin. It's really been his only in name (and on the title deeds) for years now, somewhere he hardly ever goes alone. He's not going to travel all the way from Washington just to go stare at a pond, so there's no point taking the keys. He leaves them with Landry, figures Mitchell will get the team back, and the cabin will go on belonging to them.

He can always stop by and pick them up, if he wants to. The team and the keys.



His favourite pen. He doesn't realize until he's been in his new place a couple of weeks, finally finished unpacking all the boxes. When he does, he has a vague memory of knocking it behind the fridge when he was leaving in a hurry one morning, and never remembering to retrieve it. Someone else has moved in by then, and he doesn't contemplate calling and asking them to send it on for very long.

It takes him six months to find another he likes as much.



Colonel Mitchell. Another one who's not a thing, and Jack's not sure what it says about him that he seems to be collecting wayward Air Force officers, but there it is, and at least he's not collecting stray cats. He knows he shouldn't worry about Mitchell, but he can't quite stop it. Maybe it comes from having watched him struggle in a hospital bed for months, thinking for weeks that he was going to die, or be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. It's nothing like the connection he feels to Sheppard, but it's just as unshakable.

It makes him glad for Daniel, who doesn't shut up about the guy for months.


(And one thing he didn't: His team. Not SG1 as they are now, not even SG1 as they were while he was frozen in stasis, but his team, Carter and Daniel and Teal'c, who survived some of the roughest and best years of his life right along with him. It sounds hokey, like something out of a coming of age film for teenagers, but it's still true: he'll never leave them behind, and they'll never leave him, no matter how many different galaxies they all end up in.)

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