campylobacter: campy's porn shack (hold on)
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"Big Mistake Part 3: Proclaiming the Ephemeral Beauty"
AUTHOR: [livejournal.com profile] campylobacter 
FANDOM: Stargate SG-1
PAIRINGS: Daniel/Vala (references to Daniel/Sha're, Vala/Tomin)
CHARACTERS: (this part) Hank Landry, Vala Mal Doran, Daniel Jackson
RATING: NC-17/Adult (see warnings)
WARNINGS: Serious triggers for references to abortion & miscarriage
STATUS: complete
TIMELINE/SPOILERS: Vala backstory; 10x20 Unending
ARCHIVE: Permission granted; drop me a URL if, for some reason, you aren't afraid to archive it -- I'll link to it from my blog.
CATEGORY/GENRE: Angst, darkfic, missing scenes
SERIES: "Big Mistake" for [livejournal.com profile] one_prompt "I think we made a big mistake"
WORD COUNT: 611/1897
SUMMARY: Missing scenes from Crusade, Prometheus Unbound, and Unending, connected by a subject women don't speak of in public.

AUTHOR'S NOTE: Mentions here of Jacek & Inago, not exactly the most wonderful characters you've ever met. Also, I'm using the DVD commentaries to interpret The Daniel/Vala Hurt/Comfort Scene in Unending.

Previously:
Part 1: Corned Piggot
Part 2: Survival by Symbiont
Daniel holds crying Vala in Unending

“No matter how consistently Jacek betrayed your trust, I'm a poor substitute for your dad.” Landry snapped a pink flower from one of the fuzzy-leafed plants he called an African violet. “But as a dad who's all but lost a daughter because of this time-dilation bubble, I can understand some of your loss. And Dr. Jackson's.” He lifted Vala's limp hand and placed the flower on her palm. “Let Daniel comfort you. He blames himself, you blame yourself, but it's no one's fault. You need each other to get through this.”

In the light cast by full-spectrum fluorescent bulbs, the tiny bloom shimmered with a fine, velvety texture, its minuscule center of yellow nubs proclaiming the ephemeral beauty of fragile young life. She nodded, sighing, “I think we made a big mistake.”

Landry barely stopped a disappointed groan before Vala hastily added, “I mean, we shouldn't have agreed to never speak of it.”

He smiled sadly and gave her a reassuring hug before she rushed out of the greenhouse.

In the hours that followed, she and Daniel cried in each other's arms and shared past sorrows made less painful in comparison to their present one.

“Sha're couldn't conceive during my year with her on Abydos because I hadn't kept her in Ra's sarcophagus long enough.” Daniel held her tightly as she'd tucked her face into the crook of his neck; his breath at each word sank into her hair.

She turned her head so to speak, the taste of her tears and his skin still on her lips. “But you couldn’t have spared another moment if Jack had set a bomb to explode in seven minutes.”

“Yeah, I guess.” He stroked her back through the satiny fabric of her dressing jacket. “But if I'd taken the blast from Tomin's staff instead of you, maybe you wouldn't have miscarried.”

She dismissed the notion with a short chuckle. “Adria wouldn't have healed you.”

“I was wearing armor. You weren't.”

“You can keep trying to bear the guilt for this, but I assure you: your shortcomings do not include your reproductive skills.”

His sudden burst of laughter at her quip dislodged her from his lap, so they moved from the floor at the foot of the bed to a more comfortable arrangement under the covers.

“I was pregnant once, before Adria.” She spoke softly; it was a story she'd never told. “Inago never knew.”

He said nothing, and let her stay nestled into his side with an arm encircling her.

“I considered giving up the life of a free agent, but I was running two schemes at the time. I guess learning the symptoms of pregnancy served me well later, when the Ori dropped me into Ver Isca.” She snuggled closer to him, until she could hear his heartbeat. “Arlos's mother had a reputation for helping women 'resume their cycles', so to speak. I had to acquire a hyperdrive gauge mount to pay her.”

“So... stealing her necklace was 'change' for overpayment?”

“Steal? I didn't-- well, yes, I did.” Vala shrugged. “But I was doing her a favor; that dreadful necklace didn't match any of her outfits.”

Daniel's snort of laughter developed into a full-fledged belly laugh.

Vala laughed with him, even though it was more a release of stress than validation of her wit. As she drifted to sleep after their mirth subsided, she smiled and concluded that not all mistakes required regret, and that Daniel's laughter (a rare, wondrous sound) was as effective a healing device as she could ever wish.

[end]

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-02 08:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bytheseaside.livejournal.com
An honest and touching look at the subject.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-02 08:47 pm (UTC)
ext_391411: I'd like that with a side order of Vala. (waitress)
From: [identity profile] campylobacter.livejournal.com
Thank you. It was neither an easy nor happy subject to write.

This story went through so many revisions. I deleted random AU tangents and chunks of text that weren't neutral enough.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-02 08:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bytheseaside.livejournal.com
I can only applaud your bravery at posting the story/ies and thank you for being willing to do it.

(and also because you did an excellent job of not letting the topic get away from you)

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-02 10:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] magnavox-23.livejournal.com
Ouch! This was a rough read. I can only imagine what it was like to write. Thank you for being brave enough. ;)

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-03 05:41 am (UTC)
ext_391411: There is a god sitting here with wet fingers. (hold on)
From: [identity profile] campylobacter.livejournal.com
Now I understand what authors who write angsty stories go through.

It's always confounded me giving feedback for such stories, because my vocabulary for squee is far larger than for "Ouch! That hurt, but not in a negative, 'I hate this' way."

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-03 04:40 am (UTC)
ext_45525: Gleeful Baby Riding A Bouncy Horse Toy (I'm Thinking)
From: [identity profile] thothmes.livejournal.com
A tangled and difficult subject handled with out sacrificing any of the complexity in a spare and minimalist way.

A difficult challenge well surmounted.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-03 07:14 am (UTC)
ext_391411: There is a god sitting here with wet fingers. (fruitcake)
From: [identity profile] campylobacter.livejournal.com
Thank you!

I now know why there are so few stories that address the subject; besides the obvious RL wank that overshadows the topic, it's so hard to not "punish/reward" a female character for having/not having an abortion, or depict situations that "justify/condemn" whatever the decision, or "cover my ass" if I'm accused of promoting one political agenda over another.

It's such a complicated, sprawling subject that often ignores the WHY and focuses on the WHAT.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-03 12:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dani101.livejournal.com
Lovely!:)

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-03 04:30 pm (UTC)
ext_391411: There is a god sitting here with wet fingers. (fruitcake)
From: [identity profile] campylobacter.livejournal.com
Thank you! :) And thanks for commenting.

I'm pretty sure less the 1% of this story's readers is bothering to comment, positively, negatively, or neutrally.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-15 12:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] anna-sg1.livejournal.com
YEY happy ending - in a bittersweet way - but still. ♥

I like your take on the reasons why Sha're never got pregnant or why Vala even had a miscarriage in 'Unending'.

And I almost never get to say this - but special love to Landry in the first paragraph. ♥ That was a sweet scene.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-06-15 01:29 am (UTC)
ext_391411: There is a god sitting here with wet fingers. (fruitcake)
From: [identity profile] campylobacter.livejournal.com
Thank you. <3 :) <3

I'd always wondered why Sha're could get pregnant by Apophis, and why Daniel could help Hathor spawn baby Goa'uld, but weren't able to start a family during their year on Abydos; an incompletely healed bullet wound seemed the logical, canon-compliant answer. I toyed around with invented reasons Vala would miscarry after bringing Adria to full term, and again, an incompletely healed injury from Tomin's staff blast explains it canonically.

I love Hank! He doesn't get as much love in fanfic as George Hammond does, so I try my best to work him into my stories.

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Friend/de-Friend/Ban me = it's all good.

Fandom's more fun when you're an equal-opportunity pervert (multi-shipper). Set porn goggles to maximum!

Mostly Stargate SG-1 with an intermittent chance of SGA & The X-Files.

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