by Emily M.

Four days after he presented his theories to the university, Daniel got a letter telling him he'd lost his research grant. Six weeks after that, he got his eviction notice. By the time Catherine made her offer, he didn't have any reason to turn her down.

It was cause and effect it led him to somewhere he never expected to be.

Life on Abydos had a rhythm that was slowly becoming a part of him. He could feel the change in tempo as the day progressed and knew what each meant. The city came alive with the dawn. It was the time when all the most demanding chores had by be done. The heat became oppressive by late-morning and in the middle of the day, everyone had taken shelter indoors. To go out in mid-day was considered a sort of insanity. He had done it once or twice and found the city empty. The market that an hour ago had been filled with people and loud with the shouts of vendors was deserted and silent. In a few places, he saw children playing games in the shade of buildings and tents. They laughed at him for being so silly as to stand in the sun.

He was learning to treasure the quiet times.

His favorite part of the day was the time just before the sun burst out over the horizon. The gray-blue morning light streamed into their small room through a window over the pile of old blankets they used for a bed. It spread through the room, illuminating everything. He woke first, but lied still, not wanting to disturb the pristine silence. The light in the room grew steadily and he watched as rough shapes were transformed into objects.

Next to him, Sha're began to stir. She muttered to herself as she got up, soft exhortations asking Ra to make the night longer and the day shorter. The god may have been gone, but the remnants of his millennia long rein echoed through the culture in sayings and customs that he knew would be with the people long after the memory of Ra had faded.

He didn't move and simply watched as she pulled off the thin gown she wore to bed and began to wash with water that was always ice cold this early in the morning. The air too was cold and he pulled the blankets tighter around him without once taking his eyes off his wife. As if sensing she was being watched, she looked at him and, seeing him awake, turned to him with her palms upturned, offering herself for inspection. She knew she would always pass.

He tossed aside the blankets and joined her, wrapped his arms around her and buried his face in her hair.

Outside, the sun was reflected off the buildings like a thousand diamonds as it began it's journey across the sky.

Inside, neither of them noticed or cared.


Six weeks after he reopened the Stargate, Jack O'Neill sent him a box of tissues. Three days after that, he lost his wife.

He was once again homeless, unneeded, and unwanted. Jack gave him the guest room in his house out of what he assumed was pity and the clothes on his back were courtesy of the US Air Force.

It was cause and effect and it led him to somewhere he didn't want to be.


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