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Title And All The Smiles That Are Ever Gonna Haunt Me[1/1]
Author hanorganaas
Rating PG
Pairing John/Elizabeth (if You Squint)
Summary John remembers a friend he lost during the attacks on Sepetember 11th.-Part of The Colliding Worlds Series and a Tribute Fic
Warnings Mention of Character Death, Religious Undertones.
Disclaimer Unless I was god I do not sadly own the Franchise.
Notes: Written for sga_saturday Prompt #16 Memory...see beginning for additional notes and precautions
Deds For all the heroes who both lived and died on that day saving the lives of others.

First off, just as fair warning I made Elizabeth Weir Jewish in my CW universe. Please leave the religious comments out of this especially the ANTI Semetic comments (I get very testy), we don't know for sure what religion these characters are, we are left to imagine. Along with this I know many people want to share what they feel about their faith through their stories and I love nothing more to show everyone my feelings of my own faith and obviously not to convert but to learn (I happen to love about learning about religions and cultures myself.

Also I wrote this fic as a way to both honor the fallen and creatively express my own dealings with the attacks. I was just 11 at the time of the attacks and some of this is based on my own feelings having the end of my childhood haunted by a terrible tragedy.While I did not have anyone I knew die that day (I did have a friend who lost her father), I'm a New Yorker, having the attacks happen just miles away from you is a scary thing. Well I hope you enjoy, and may the fallen remain etched in our hearts.

John Sheppard was not a religious man; in fact it was such an irony, that the descendant of what should have been Roman Catholic Martyr who wound up in his time, became an agnostic after all the hell he went through. Yet every year on 9/11 he would make his way over to the St. John’s Cathedral and light a candle in remembrance. One of his college friends, who was like the sister he never had, died on one of the planes. But he didn’t light a candle just for her.

He lit it in memory of all the fire fighters, policemen, emergency workers and the ordinary people who could have made it out of those burning buildings but saved others anyway who died on that day. John felt a special connection to them. He may have not been a fire fighter or a policeman but he was a soldier. Like them he knew what it was like to risk his life to save others in such dangerous situations.

This year was going to be different though. It was the first year he was remembering 9/11/2001 in a galaxy far away. There was no Cathedral nearby, but thanks to Elizabeth (who grew up in what she called conservadox Jewish family), his Catholic 12th great grandfather and a few other Atlantis inhabitants of various faiths, they set up an interfaith center on the grounds.

As he walked the halls of Atlantis with a candle in his hand, he noticed the lights in Atlantis were dim. It was as if the city knew that this was a day of mourning. Then again the city could sense anything.

“Hello John,” A voice said.

He lifted his head to see his famed martyr ancestor, Sir Thomas Moore who had his name since changed to “Doctor Moore” to have him fit in the era, standing in front of him.

“Hey gramps,” John said trying to put a smile on his face.

“I don’t mean to intrude but…..why do you have a candle in your hand?”

“Oh um you were told about the terrorist attacks on America right?”

“Yes Rodney told me about it as he tells me everything. How horrible. I am guessing , you are going to mourn the dead in your own way. I was just with Rodney in the chapel we just had our own mini memorial service I can go again if you need me.”

“No, no, I am fine. But thanks. See you later.”

John continued to walk as he took a step closer he started to reflect. He reflected on the images he saw on his television that afternoon of the towers burning before they crumbled before his eyes, the sight of the damaged Pentagon and the burning field of Pennsylvania shadowing the victims who fought not be pawns of a deadly murder plot. He thought about his friend and her funeral, how they had no body and just an empty casket. She had just had a child 6 months before, she didn’t get to see her daughter’s potential, only watched in spirit from afar. As he thought these things, the lights in Atlantis dimmed to almost total darkness. But a soft sad female singing voice started to guide him through. It was just, beautiful.

Yigadal v'yiskadash sh'mei rabbaw
B'allmaw dee v'raw chir'usei
v'yamlich malchusei,b'chayeichon, uv'yomeichon,
uv'chayei d'chol beis yisroel,
ba'agawlaw u'vizman kawriv, v'imru: Amen.


John had no clue what the words meant. It had to be some prayer in another language or some other religion. It was some prayer of mourning probably. He quickly paced to the interfaith center to find the voice’s owner. Maybe she could explain what it meant.

Y'hei sh'mei rabbaw m'vawrach l'allam u'l'allmei allmayaw.
Yis'bawrach, v'yishtabach, v'yispaw'ar, v'yisromam, v'yis'nasei,
v'yis'hadar, v'yis'aleh, v'yis'halawl sh'mei d'kudshaw b'rich hu
L'aylaw min kol birchawsaw v'shirawsaw,
tush'b'chawsaw v'nechemawsaw, da'ami'rawn b'all'maw, v'imru: Amen
Y'hei shlawmaw rabbaw min sh'mayaw,v'chayim
awleinu v'al kol yisroel, v'imru: Amen


He walked inside and was shocked to find that the voice came from none other than…Elizabeth. She paced back and forth in large room with the small pink prayer book called a siddur she carried with her to every meal. He knew that though she was not religious as she was during her upbringing, she still kept the customs she was used to. Though she was immersed she managed to spot him at the corner her eye, lifting her head to quickly gaze at him.

“Um,” John said running a free hand through his dark hair, “if I am disturbing-“

Elizabeth interrupted him by lifting a finger before looking down upon her siddur to finish the prayer.

Oseh shalom bim'ro'mawv, hu ya'aseh shalom awleinu v'al kol yisroel v'imru: Amen

She carefully closed the book and looked back at John.

“The Mourner’s Kaddish,” she said as if she was reading John’s quizzical look on his face, “it’s a prayer we say for the dead. It’s usually saved for loved ones we lost but I also say it on September 11th every year. I feel it is my duty as a Jew and an American, also to honor my two childhood friends I went to school with and my cousin.”

John tried not to show emotion, but he looked at Elizabeth with sympathetic eyes. He knew the pain of losing one friend on that bloody day but two along with a family member? He didn’t know how he would be able to handle it.

“I’m so sorry.”

“Thank you, I miss them dearly but I know they are not gone….they live on in my memories. I am surprised you’re in here, thought you were Atheist.”

“Agnostic but close, I go to my church every year to light a candle for….” He paused he almost couldn’t say it, the other reason he had this tradition, “the heroes.”

Elizabeth face became soft, as if she knew his lie.

“You lost someone didn’t you?”

John swallowed. There was a table set up with lit candles, probably from other people who lost other’s that day and he began walking towards there. He could never hide anything from Elizabeth. At this point she could read him like an open book when others couldn’t. There was no point of trying to resist telling any of the secrets she sensed at this point.

He made a deep sigh and set the candle on the table. His back was faced towards Elizabeth. He didn’t want her looking him in the eye.

“In college I met this girl Cassie, she became my best friend. We basically became each other’s brother and sister, which was cool because I had no sisters and she had no brothers. In college, I was a mess, I don’t want to get much into it but she helped me. She was my support when times were down. We were there for each other during our milestones, her wedding, my Air Force induction ceremony, I was the godfather to her only daughter Melissa. And every week, even when I was in Afghanistan she would always contact me just to see how I was doing. Her last call to me was at midnight on September 11th, 2001 during her business trip to Boston she was going to fly home that morning. It was probably the best conversation we ever had and we planned to see each other that Friday for lunch.”

He swallowed. He felt it coming the tears, but he didn’t want to cry in front of Elizabeth not now.

“That morning I was awaken by the sounds of wailing,” He continued, behind him he heard footsteps. He blinked as he felt a tear fall down his eye, “I walked downstairs to find my Ex in hysterics. I looked at my TV and I saw it. The Towers burning before my eyes. I immediately felt a sense of dread because I knew….Cassie was on a plane flying home. It was the first time in a long time I got down on my knees and prayed but when they said the flight was from Boston to LA..I knew I just knew she was….”

He fought hard but this battle he lost in an instant. He laid his face in his hand and began to sob. He almost wanted to run out of there and hide for showing weakness. Hell she probably thought he was a whimp for breaking down and sobbing. But no, instead she wrapped her arms around him and held him close.

He was at a loss of what to do. He wasn’t used to such comfort but on instinct he wrapped his arms around her and buried his head in her shoulder. They stayed like that for a few moments before John lifted his head wiped his nose with his arm.

“Thank you,” He whispered, “for not running away when I was sobbing you don’t think differently of me do you?”

“John you’re a human you’re allowed to cry,” she said.

A weak smile formed on John’s lips as Elizabeth walked over to a stand to pick up a lit candle.

“Thanks, I never really cried about it before. I guess it just really hit me about how much I miss her.”

“She’s not gone,” She said putting the candle his hand, “she lives on….in your memories. Don’t remember her for how she died remember how she made you smile, she’s watching John and I know she is so proud of all you of how you much you achieved.”

John looked at the only unlit candle on the table waiting for him. He moved his shaky hand that held the one thing that would ignite the flame towards it. Suddenly he felt a hand gently grab his wrist steadying him as he moved towards the candle. He opened his eyes and saw it was Elizabeth helping him as always……just like Cassie.

As he dipped the candle he felt another hand helping him. He turned his head slightly to see Cassie with her smile before disappearing with the small burning flame. And he couldn’t help but smile back.

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
hoktauri
Sep. 12th, 2011 03:54 am (UTC)
Wow, I really liked this. Hebrew is such a beautiful language, and the idea of Elizabeth singing the Mourner's Kaddish is both lovely and haunting. While I typically see the characters as non-religious, the notion of Lizzie raised in a Jewish household also fits to me.

Shalom and thank you for this!
hanorganaas
Sep. 12th, 2011 04:08 am (UTC)
I had the chills writing Elizabeth chanting the Kaddish myself. It's a very dark and beautiful prayer.

Im glad you enjoyed the religious aspect of it and thank you so much for your review!
stella_pegasi
Sep. 16th, 2011 03:04 am (UTC)
This was lovely. I have had many friends of the Jewish faith and have heard the Mourner's Kaddish on several occasions. This story is touching and I feel totally within character for both John and Elizabeth. While I, too, rarely think of the characters as religious, this is very credible to me.

Thank you for writing such a moving piece.

hanorganaas
Sep. 18th, 2011 02:37 am (UTC)
Thank you so much!
esteefee
Sep. 17th, 2011 06:56 pm (UTC)
I enjoyed seeing Elizabeth in this context!
hanorganaas
Sep. 18th, 2011 02:38 am (UTC)
Thank you for the review
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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