DISCLAIMER: The story, and characters and anything and everything else concerning SG: SG1 belong to MGM, Gekko, Secret Productions etc, they are so not mine and no money is being made from this and no copyright infringement is intended.
WARNING: This contains SPOILERS for the Season 7 Episode Grace, Fall-Out and Chimera. Read no further if you'd rather not be spoiled.
EXTRA WARNING: this is set in an imperfect universe where sh*t happens even to the best of people. Contains brief references to het sex.
SERIES: This is the third story in the Grace series.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author

The Man in My Dreams
By Celievamp

My life seems to be going seriously weird on me. It's got to the stage where I'm wondering if the rest of my team was right and that the concussion I got on the Prometheus did have some lasting side effects.

First there was that whole mess on Kelowna or Langara or whatever they're calling themselves this week. I can't deny it. It might have just been a rebound thing from Janet but there was definite sparkage between me and Kianna. Of course, Jonas thought the sparkage was all his way. He was definitely smitten as well. Bless him. He was genuinely sorry when I told him that Janet and I had split up.

Then the earthquake hit and Janet came through with the medical teams to supervise the triage of the injured and make sure that care supplies were distributed. Once I would have spent any free time I had with her stealing moments here and there even if it was only to catch a glimpse of her smile and know it was meant only for me. I wanted to see her more than anything but I couldn't do it. I was such a chickenshit. So I kept my distance – as much as I could. I was the senior officer on the ground so she had to report to me twice a day to keep my updated on the situation. And that's what she did. Stood in front of me, stared me in the eye, delivered her report as concisely and precisely as she could and then left almost before I could say a word. I kept telling myself that I felt nothing. But I knew I was lying.

And there was still that sparkage between me and Kianna to think about.

Of course then we discovered that Kianna was a Goa'uld working for Ba'al and I couldn't believe what I had nearly done. Then the Goa'uld sacrificed herself to save us and blow the rift. And when we got Kianna back I realised that she was a nice girl but nothing special. The sparkage had gone. Which meant that I had been seriously attracted to a Goa'uld. – not good for my piece of mind. However, being one of the few people who knew what she had gone through, who had had a symbiote die inside me and survived, I tried to be as helpful as I could towards her before she went back to Langara and Jonas. It was the least I could do.

It was of course mere coincidence that whenever I was with Kianna and Janet came over to check on her that I happened to be holding her hand or touching her. Was I trying to make Janet jealous? Could I be that devious? Apparently.

Even before we were together, conscious or unconscious, I had always been able to feel Janet's presence, a kind of warmth that stole over me whenever she was near but I could not feel her now. Part of me was glad that I was being so strong about this: that it was for the best. Part of me just wanted to mourn a loss that felt worse than having Jolinar die inside me or killing Martouf.

Up until I said goodbye to Kianna, I had been dreaming about Janet just about every night. Not just about us being together, about the sex (goddess how I missed the sex, even more just holding her, the feel of that finegrained cinnamon and jasmine scented skin under my fingers) , but ordinary domestic things, taking a walk together, washing up, working in the garden. I would tell her about my day as I had always done when we were together: the successes and the frustrations. I would just watch her, her natural grace, her energy and commitment, her gentle kindness coming out in everything that she did.

And then it just stopped. It was as if my subconscious had said: hey girl, enough is enough. You wanted to be alone, you wanted to make a life without her. So dreaming about her is just a crutch for you to lean on to fool yourself that you're coping with this. So now I'm taking away the crutch. This is the way you wanted it. Now deal with it.

It was unsettling at first. A week went by, then a second. The most contact I had with Janet, real or imagined, was in an email from Cassie. One line: Mom says hi.

And then I began to dream about a man: Peter Shannon. He was a cop friend of my brother's who I had met a couple of times when visiting Mark in San Diego. I had the feeling that Mark was definitely trying to set us up. He was nice enough, good looking, pleasant company and definitely not a member of the lunatic fringe and if things had been different: yeah, maybe. But I was with Janet then. And nothing and no one could compare to her.

I dreamt about Peter three nights in succession. In my first dream he was working a case in Colorado Springs and we had got together for drinks. Which lead to a dinner date and then a second and then a trip to the movies. All this time in my dream I was living back at my old house and I was working at the SGC not the Alpha site and our relationship was great except there was this whole secrecy thing in that I couldn't tell Peter what I did. He was a cop for crissake: the 'deep space radar telemetry' story fooled him for about five seconds.

And in the second dream he took me dancing and I dressed up for him in high heels and a red dress that looked amazingly sexy on me with perfect makeup and hair. And he brought me a dozen red roses. I checked myself out in the mirror in the hall before I went out the door and my traitor subconscious said: if only Janet could see me in this.

But I still couldn't tell him what I did and by this time in my dream Osiris had made an appearance. She was bugging Daniel, trying to see if he knew more than he thought he did about the City of the Lost that we were still supposedly searching for.

And I let Peter stay the night and I slept with him.

I woke up from that one and cried into my poor abused pillow over everything that I had lost and everything that I was missing and the cruel games that my psyche seemed intent on playing with me. Don't get me wrong, the dream sex was good, fabulous even. Peter was a considerate lover the kind of man that if I had found before I found Janet I could have settled for. And that's the crux: I could have settled for him. I would have been happy. I would have been everything Dad wanted for me, everything society expected of me.

But Peter did not touch me in the way that no one but Janet had ever been able to touch me from the very first time we made love. No one, not even Janet, especially not Janet knew just how much she meant to me how far under my skin she had travelled. She might think there were hidden depths to me that she still had not seen but there weren't. She had seen everything of Sam Carter that there was to see. That last real conversation with her ran through my mind. And she was prepared to accept me as I was. It was me who had broken us apart, my insistence that we were over that I needed to move on.

It was all illusion, smoke and mirrors. I had not moved on. I would never move on. I loved Janet Fraiser and I would always love her and her alone. Now all I had to do was get up the courage to tell her how big a mistake I had made in walking away from her.

But first I needed to get very very drunk.

The End

Sequel No Distance Left to Run

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