STORY STATUS: Completed
SERIES/SEQUEL INFO: N/A
SPOILERS: The First Ones
CATEGORIES: Angst, POV
Content Level: C
CONTENT WARNINGS: None
SUMMARY: Just Carter’s thoughts when O’Neill kills Rothman in ‘The First Ones’.
ARCHIVE PERMISSIONS: ThePointOfOrigin site, Helio, JackFic site.
DISCLAIMER: Stargate SG-1 and it’s characters are the property of Showtime/Viacom MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, Gekko Productions, this story is for fun and I sure as hell didn’t get any money. No copyright infringement intended and you can’t post this story anywhere else unless you ask and I say ‘okee dokee’. Understood Airman? Good.
FILE SIZE: 29KB
AUTHORS NOTE: Ta to Ruth. Love feedback, covet feedback, want feedback, send feedback!!
It’s funny, there are a very few times when I get the chance to glimpse what lies behind my CO’s façade, but one of those few times seems to flash by when he kills. He never hesitates to shoot whenever it is totally necessary – the late Doctor Rothman being a case in point – he acts on a soldier’s instincts. Afterwards however, you can see the recognition clear and pure on his face; in his eyes. His expression goes cold, hard; you can see the horror – concealed yes, but definitely there. It’s as if when he kills he sacrifices his own self worth, and then suffers the remorse as a result. I almost feel privileged that I know him well enough to recognise that moment, that brief look into what lies beneath all that bravado, all those jokes. I’ve always felt that his humour has an element of childish pain, something akin to juvenile desperate measures – hiding behind a mask of happiness and false jollity.
And then this contradicts itself as I look back and see that face again, so closed and yet so full of emotion. If you know him you can almost hazard a guess as to the horrors, and even that much is a little too much for me, so I can’t imagine how he carries the truth around with him so readily.
He walks off with purpose, not looking back, walking away from another death. I don’t know how many he has killed in his service, but I guess it chips away at him each time, exposing his past a little more with every blood spilled. For purely selfish reasons I hope that he never lets this get in the way of his doing what he needs to do, and as a soldier I know that he never would. Or rather, I know that he would do anything to protect his people. He, however, is a different matter – what would stop him saving himself? Something not nearly important enough if you ask me, don’t get me wrong – I don’t believe he has a death wish, nor is he flippant towards his life, but he will sacrifice himself and he seems surprisingly ready to do so.
Too ready I think.
I may be biased.
He’s gone, and we’re left with the body. Death is a viscous thing, ugly and rarely beautiful, especially in battle. Honour and valour are poor comforts at such times. Mutilated, bloody and dead limbs dispel any such thoughts, and I can’t help but let some flash of fear run through me when I look at Rothman’s staring eyes that this is how the Colonel will end. I don’t want him to end that way, and yet I know that any other way would be far too quiet and lonely for such a man. He seems made to live and die in twisted justice. For some distant good, against some distant evil that hardly anyone on earth knows about and really doesn’t seem that all-encompassing when someone dies.
It seems to narrow my vision, I look at Rothman and everything becomes terribly mundane and simple. No complicated alien devices, no complex negotiations, no difficult theories or catalogues of revenge, just death. Pure and simple death.
None of the prospective actions in this world means anything to Rothman now. So, following this train of thought – it seems even more amazing that a man like O’Neill would sacrifice his life, his own, one, precious life, to save a universe so massive that it would swallow his identity whole. I think he knows this really but he fools himself. I presume this because I know he’s more intelligent than he likes to admit and anyone exposed to the Stargate would realise the huge nature of the universe around them and the revelation that we are not alone it in. So here he employs his stubborn mask, hiding such ideas not only from those around him but also from himself. By telling himself he isn’t that clever he allows himself to hide the knowledge deep inside and therefore enables himself to carry out his job as he sees it.
I think that his stubborn nature and his dark past combine to make Colonel Jack O’Neill one of the most dangerous and reliable men that I know. Many have turned to him for help, unconsciously taking advantage of his nature, knowing that he will not fail them, knowing that his very being dictates that he cannot help but do everything within his power to save them – if they have just cause for being saved. And therein is another aspect to his character that fills me with dread.
He has been thrust into a life that calls on him and him alone to make these judgements – who lives and who dies. Is this alien good or bad, is this traitor pure or evil, is this situation risky or not? Always he makes the choice and always he lives with the consequences, bottles them up inside and hefts them around like useless luggage, only to have them pop up against his will at times like this.
I can never forget O’Neill’s jokes, just like I can never forget his face after he shoots Rothman – the killing face. Filled with what he was, what he’s seen, and what he struggles to avoid becoming.