I Will Remember You: Part 3 – Full Circle
Categories: Angst, Drama, Romance
Rating: PG-13 / R
Content Warning: Mild Profanity, Adult Themes, Strong Sexual Content
Spoilers: Ascension, Abyss, Metamorphosis, Full Circle
Author's Notes: This is the third story in a 4-part series, covering portions of the events in Meridian, Metamorphosis, Full Circle and Fallen/Homecoming. The story takes an AU turn in Part 3 and 4. A portion of the lyrics from the song "I Will Remember You" is quoted in each part and has some connection to what takes place in the story.
I'm so afraid to love you, but more afraid to lose
Clinging to a past that doesn't let me choose
Once there was a darkness, deep and endless night
You gave me everything you had, oh, you gave me light
– Sarah McLachlan, "I Will Remember You"
Sam took the empty cup of tea back to the kitchen and rinsed it out. It had been a month since the incident with Nirrti. Though the physical damage to Sam's body had been reversed, she was still haunted by the experience and by the knowledge of what would have happened to her if Egar had not chosen to read the Goa'uld's mind. She would have died in the same horrible way that Lieutenant Colonel Evanov did, her body reduced to a puddle of liquid, yet another victim of the Goa'uld's continued attempts to create a Hok'tar, an advanced human.
There was something else that Sam had not been able to get out of her mind, something that she kept telling herself wasn't real. After she'd been brought back to the cell, feeling so sick and weak, for a brief moment, she had thought that she felt something. It was as if someone was touching her cheek, though there was no one there. More than that, for a few crazy seconds, she could have sworn that she sensed a presence, a familiar and much loved one. But it couldn't have been real. It had just been her imagination conjuring up what she had so desperately wanted. Daniel had not been there, and he never would be. She needed to accept that.
For all these months, she had been trying to fight her feelings for Daniel, to banish them from her heart, but it was useless; they would not leave. Yet again, she'd come to care deeply for a man only to lose him.
Ever since the deaths of Martouf and Narim, followed by the loss of Orlin, a fear had grown inside Sam, the fear of loving someone, only to lose them in some way. With the loss of Daniel, it had happened again, only, this time, it was so very much worse. When she lost Daniel it was as if the light had gone out of her world, leaving only darkness, a deep and endless night that weight down her spirit.
She had hidden the true depth of her sorrow from everyone, especially her teammates, not wanting them to know how desperately she still missed him, how it still felt like they'd only just lost him. She'd found herself clinging to the past, to the memories of the years she had with Daniel. As she did so, she had realized that falling in love with him was inevitable. Even if she had realized sooner what was happening, she would have had no choice in the matter. She could not have stopped it from happening. Daniel was perfect for her, everything in a man that she could ever want or need. No matter how much she might have feared to love him, it would have happened all the same.
With a sigh, Sam returned to the living room. She froze in her tracks at the sight of something forming in the air a few feet away, a light that appeared almost solid. The light grew and took on a shape. When it faded, there was a man standing before her in its place.
Sam gasped. "Daniel? Is that really you?"
The form of Daniel smiled. "Yeah, Sam, it's me. I'm really here."
Tears filled Sam's eyes. "Oh my God. I thought I was never going to see you again."
Daniel's eyes gazed at her a little sadly. "I know."
Sam's tears began to fall. "I've missed you so much."
Daniel took a step toward her, distressed by the tears. "Sam, don't cry. Please."
She dashed the tears from her face. "I'm sorry. It's just so good to see you. But why are you here? Is something wrong?"
"No, nothing's wrong. I just. . . ." Daniel sighed. "I just had to say I'm sorry."
Sam frowned, puzzled. "Sorry? For what?"
"For not being able to stop Nirrti from hurting you."
Sam's breath drew in sharply. "Oh my God. You were there. What I felt was real?"
Daniel gave her a nod. "Yeah, I was there through the whole thing. You have no idea how hard it was watching you go through that and be unable to stop it. But I wasn't allowed to interfere." He took another step toward her, gazing at her intently. "I wouldn't have let you die, Sam. If I hadn't been able to—" He broke off suddenly, shaking his head slightly. "If things hadn't gone like they did, and you reached the point where you were going to die, I'd have helped you ascend."
That surprised Sam. "Wouldn't that have gotten you into trouble?"
"Yeah, but probably no worse trouble than Oma is in. I'm assuming that Jack hasn't told you about my visit to him."
Now, Sam was stunned. "You visited the colonel? When?"
"When he was Ba'al's prisoner. I couldn't openly help him either, so I offered him ascension. He turned me down."
Sam shook her head. "That doesn't surprise me." Then she frowned. "Wait a minute. What do you mean you couldn't openly help him?" She stared at him searchingly. "What were you going to say before, when you interrupted yourself?"
Daniel turned away. "Nothing. I wasn't going to say anything."
Sam went up to him. "Yes, you were. You did help us against Nirrti, didn't you. You did something to get us out of that situation." Sam thought about it. "For some reason, Egar suddenly decided to read Nirrti's mind. We all assumed that it was because of what the colonel said, but it wasn't, was it. It was because of you." Sam's eyes widened as she realized something. "When I was in the chamber, I was in agony. It hurt so much that I thought it would kill me right then and there. But then, all of a sudden, it didn't hurt quite so much. It became bearable. It was you, wasn't it. You shielded me somehow."
Daniel turned to her. "I just couldn't let you suffer like that, Sam. I had to do something."
Sam reached a hand out to touch him, but drew it back, knowing that she would feel nothing but air.
"Thank you," she whispered. "You risked being punished for me. And I know I'm right about Egar, too, even if you won't admit it. I'm betting you had something to do with the colonel's escape as well. You were always so good at finding a way to make things turn out all right, to find a solution when no one else could."
Daniel shook his head. "Not always, Sam."
She gave him a sad look. "I know."
Sam gazed at Daniel, not wanting this moment to end. She wanted to hold onto him, both physically and metaphorically. She wanted him to stay and never go back. But, looking in his eyes, she knew that he was going to leave.
"You're going to go, aren't you," she said.
"I have to, Sam."
Sam started getting angry. "Why? Why can't you stay just a while longer? Is it against some stupid rule? Won't they even let you visit a friend and-and just talk for a while?"
The sadness was back in Daniel's eyes. "No. Even that is something we're not supposed to do. I'm supposed to leave my old life behind me, Sam. I've been watching you guys a lot, way more than Oma says I should. She keeps telling me that I need to put my old life in the past. But she knew that I was still really upset about not being able to stop Nirrti from doing those things to you. She was worried that I'd do something . . . stupid because of it. So she told me to come see you, ask forgiveness and . . . balance my spirit. Then she told me I needed to say goodbye."
Daniel came all the way up to her, and Sam could have sworn that she felt the warmth of his body. And then she realized that there were tears in Daniel's eyes.
"But I can't say goodbye," he whispered. He reached out his hand, and Sam was shocked to feel his touch on her face. She gasped and grabbed his hand.
"For a little while, Sam. Just for a little while."
With a small sob, Sam threw herself into Daniel's arms. He held her tight against him, closing his eyes over the ache inside that holding her caused.
Sam cried, tears pouring down her face as they did every day for that first week after they lost him. He just held onto her, his hand stroking her back soothingly. It felt so good to have him hold her. But it also hurt, for she knew that it would soon end, and he'd go away.
When Sam finally drew her head back, she saw that Daniel was crying, too, his beautiful blue eyes bright with tears. He touched her face, fingers softly caressing her cheek.
"I've missed you," he murmured, "more than I thought I would."
Daniel smiled softly. "It feels good to touch someone like this. I never realized that I'd miss physical contact this much."
He pressed his lips against Sam's forehead, the touch filling him with longing. Holding her felt so good, far too good. He should let her go and leave, go back to his mostly solitary existence as one of the Ascended. But he just couldn't, not yet. So, with a sigh, he closed his eyes and rested his cheek against hers, letting himself have this for just a little while longer.
Sam held onto Daniel, her heart soaring and breaking all at the same time. It felt so wonderful holding him, but she knew that it couldn't last, that, very soon, he'd leave, disappear from her life yet again. At that thought, she clung to him a little tighter. Her fingers began to slide through his hair, then down to caress the soft nape of his neck.
A shudder passed through Daniel's body, his breath catching in his throat. He pulled back, intending to separate himself from Sam and leave. But then he looked into her eyes, the eyes he'd missed so much. His heart skipped a beat, and, before he could stop and consider the ramification, he lowered his lips to hers.
Surprise made a small gasp leap from Sam's throat, but then the feeling of Daniel's kiss overpowered her, and she stopped thinking.
The feeling of Sam responding to the kiss drove all other thoughts out of Daniel's mind. He pressed her body tightly against his, feelings and sensations flowing through him that he hadn't experienced in such a long time. And then he felt the tip of Sam's tongue against his lips, and, suddenly, those sensations were like an unstoppable firestorm. With a little moan, Daniel opened his mouth and let the flames consume them both. The kiss transformed from soft and gentle to deep and intensely passionate.
Sam felt like she was burning up. The feeling of his lips on hers, his tongue deep within her mouth, felt so good, so very good. But it wasn't enough. She wanted more. Lowering one of her hands to his buttocks, she ground her hips against his and felt him respond in kind.
Daniel took two steps forward, and then they were on the couch, his body on top of Sam's. She moaned and clutched at him, wrapping a leg around his hips.
Daniel mouth descended to her neck, kissing and licking at the tender skin. He knew that this shouldn't be happening, but, at that moment, he didn't care about anything except being like this with Sam. To hell with what they should and should not do.
Sam groaned at the feeling of Daniel's hand sliding beneath her top, gliding over her skin. Somewhere in the recesses of her mind, she knew that they shouldn't be doing this, but she didn't care. She wanted this; she wanted him.
Reaching for the hem of her top, she yanked it up and off. Stunned by the action, Daniel froze for a moment, then he looked down at her, the swell of her breasts covered in nothing but a thin bra, the faint outline of her nipples showing through. He couldn't stop himself from lowering his mouth to them, kissing the soft mounds. He nuzzled at the material, lowering a bra strap so that he could push the cloth aside and reach what was beneath.
Sam's entire body shuddered as Daniel took her into his mouth. Oh God, it felt so good. Her hold on him tightened, one of her hands grasping his hip. She could feel his hardness pressing against her, and she wanted it inside her.
Sam's bra was gone now. Where it went she didn't know or care. Daniel's tongue was bathing her skin, his teeth grazing her flesh. She took hold of his head and guided it to her other breast, arching herself upward to receive him. He hungrily obeyed the unspoken command, filling his mouth with her, the taste of her. She was now rubbing up against him, and it was almost more than he could take. He wanted to be inside her, their bodies merged so deeply that it would be like they were one person.
It was that thought that finally made Daniel think about what they were doing. This couldn't happen.
Daniel lifted his head and met Sam's eyes. The sight of her flushed face and passion-darkened eyes was almost too much for his control to handle. He fought against the desire to kiss her and won.
"Sam," he whispered. "We can't do this."
"No. Please don't stop this, Daniel," Sam begged. "I want you so much. I never knew how much you really meant to me until I was losing you. And then you were gone, and it was too late. I never told you. I love you, Daniel. I've always loved you. I just couldn't see it until it was too late."
Daniel gasped, stunned by her declaration. Words welled up into his throat that he could not stop.
"God, Sam. I love you, too. I didn't know until what happened with Nirrti. It was ripping me apart seeing her hurting you and knowing that you were going to die. I wanted to kill her. I wanted to destroy that lab and everything in it. You have no idea how close I came to doing it. If Oma hadn't stopped me, I really think I'd have done it, or at least I'd have tried."
Sam was crying now. "Please, Daniel. I need you. I need to feel you."
The plea shattered Daniel's control. He crushed his mouth against Sam's, letting go of all the reasons why this should not happen. He lifted her off the couch, carried her to the bedroom and laid her on the bed. He removed the rest of her clothing, touching and kissing her everywhere.
Sam reached for his clothes, intent upon removing them, but there was no need, for, suddenly, they were gone, and Daniel was lowering himself on top of her. Sam spared no thought for the demonstration of his power. The only thing in her mind was the feeling of his naked body upon her, his weight warm and real. She clutched at him, raising her legs to wrapped around his waist, desperate to feel him come inside.
Daniel met her eyes, holding onto them as he slowly sank deep into her body. Sam gasped at the feeling of him entering her, filling her in every way, both physically and emotionally. Daniel trembled at the sensation, the glorious feeling of being within her body. He knew, though, that there was a way for them to be even closer, a way that only he as one of the Ascended could accomplish.
As they began to move, slowly rocking together, Daniel closed his eyes and reached deep inside himself, past his temporary corporeal form and into the light that was within.
Immersed in the feeling of their lovemaking, Sam suddenly felt something happening, something far more. As Orlin did that day more than a year ago, Daniel gave himself to Sam, sharing his essence with her, all that he was, the light of his soul. It overwhelmed her, filled every cell, every molecule.
With their psychic joining, Daniel felt Sam's essence encompass him, become a part of him. The physical sensation of their lovemaking expanded, and the sharing became complete – physical, mental and emotional. It drowned them in sensations unlike anything they'd ever felt before, so powerful that they could do nothing but let themselves be swept along with the tide.
Their movements strengthened in speed and intensity, the ecstasy within their bodies building wildly. And then it exploded inside them, and, with a cry, they plunged together over the edge.
It seemed to go on forever, but, at last, it was over. Shaking and weak, Sam gasped for breath, too overwhelmed to move. Daniel gazed down at her as the psychic connection he'd established slowly faded until only their bodies were still joined. He kissed her face, her hair. He couldn't speak, for his heart was too full. He had thought that he loved her before, but now, after seeing within her soul, after having that soul become one with his, there were no words to describe how he felt for her. She was a part of him now and would be forever.
"Daniel," Sam whispered in a trembling voice. There were tears in her eyes as she met his gaze.
He touched her face. "I know, Sam. I know. I feel it, too."
Their lips came together in a long kiss. Daniel rolled with Sam onto his back. With her body draped over his, he closed his eyes, absorbing the feeling of her deep into his heart so that it would always be there. He knew that he had to leave soon. Shifu had been able to remain corporeal for several hours, but he had not connected so deeply, so completely, with someone as Daniel had just done with Sam. He was already in danger of descending, of being unable to shed his human form. But he didn't want to leave. He wanted to stay so badly. Just a few more minutes. He'd give himself a few more minutes, and then he'd go.
Sam held onto Daniel, not wanting to let go. Some instinct was telling her that he was going to leave soon, and it was almost killing her. She couldn't let him go, not now, not after what they'd just shared. She loved him so completely. He had let her inside his soul, and he was now permanently inside hers.
They lay in silence as the minutes ticked by. Then the words that neither one of them wanted spoken were uttered.
"I have to go," Daniel said.
"I have to, Sam. God, you don't know how much I want to stay, but I can't."
Sam slid off of him and stared at him with eyes that revealed how angry and upset she was.
"Why? Why can't you stay? Orlin descended. He stayed, and he descended. Why can't you?"
Daniel rolled onto his side and cupped her face in his hands, gazing at her intently. "If the only issue was what I want, I would stay, Sam. I would give up ascension for you and never look back. But this isn't just about me or about us. Something's happening. I don't know what it is yet, but Anubis is planning something, and I have a feeling that it's big. I need to know what he's up to. I have to do this, Sam. I have to put aside what I want. I may be the only one who can prevent something terrible from happening. I couldn't take direct action, but I might be able to do something."
Sam sighed. "I know." This was Daniel. This was the kind of person he was, who he would always be, a man who sacrificed his own desires and welfare for the sake of others. It was one of the reasons why she loved him so much.
She took hold of his hands. "Daniel, I want you to know something. I've been afraid to love, to really give myself to someone because I thought it would always end in some way, that I'd be alone in the end. When I realized that I loved you and then you went away, I felt like my fears had been confirmed." She gazed into his eyes. "I'm still afraid to love you. I'm afraid that you'll go away and never come back. But . . . but, now, I'm more afraid to lose these feelings I have for you, the way you make me feel. I don't want to lose them."
His eyes awash with tears, Daniel smiled. He then kissed her one last time. "I love you, Sam, so very much. I will come back to you. I promise. And, when I do, if it's possible . . ." he caressed her face, "I'll stay."
"I love you," Sam whispered, clinging to him for a final few seconds.
Gently, Daniel drew back from her. His eyes never left hers as he began to lose form, the light enveloping him. And then he was gone . . . and Sam cried.
It was a couple of months later that Daniel returned, but not to Sam. It was to Jack that he appeared, warning the colonel that Anubis had a plot to create a superweapon that would assure his domination over all the other Goa'uld and, ultimately, the entire galaxy.
As Jack explained it all to everyone in the briefing room, Sam pretended to be surprised when he admitted that he'd been visited by Daniel once before. She didn't have to pretend her surprise, however, when Teal'c revealed that he, too, had a visitation from their former teammate. So, Daniel had come to all three of them.
Very soon, they were on Abydos, trying to find the Eye of Ra, the last piece Anubis needed to complete his weapon. And then there he was, Daniel, standing right before them. Sam blurted out his name and was surprised by his abrupt greeting, consisting of a curt utterance of hers and Jonas' names before he turned away. Though stung by the greeting, she gazed at him longingly, wanting to rush across the chamber and throw her arms around him. Curbing the desire, Sam got down to business. They were on a mission, and this was no time for emotions.
Jack and Skaara left to help Teal'c and the others hold off Anubis' Jaffa, leaving Sam, Daniel and Jonas alone, gazing at the wall behind which Daniel was certain there was a secret chamber. Sam's eyes turned from the wall to study Daniel's profile. He was frowning, deep in thought.
Unable to remain silent any longer, Sam murmured, "I missed you."
Daniel turned to her. "I missed you, too, Sam."
His voice was soft and gentle, a tone one would expect from one good friend to another. But what was in his eyes was so much more. They looked at her as if he wanted to pull her into his arms and never let go.
All at once, Sam understood the brevity of his previous greeting. Daniel wanted so much more, just like she did, and he was having to control himself, maintain a distance from her.
Smiling inside, Sam turned her gaze back to the wall. And then she felt something, a soft caress that brushed across her cheek, down her neck and all the way down her arm to end at her hand, where she felt a warm pressure, as if her hand was being held. Daniel still stood where he'd been before, not having moved at all, but he had just touched her in the only way he could without being seen. Sam closed her eyes as the invisible mental touch returned to her face. And then, somehow, someway, she felt him kiss her, soft and light.
'I love you, Sam,' she heard him whisper in her mind.
'I love you, too,' she silently said back to him, hoping he'd hear. She sensed that he did.
'I haven't forgotten my promise to you,' he then told her, which made her smile internally again.
Daniel broke contact with her, and she returned her full attention to the matter at hand.
The situation soon turned very bad, and SG-1 just barely managed to make it off Abydos alive. For days, they tried to dial through to the Abydos gate, but to no avail. When they finally succeeded and went through, they learned the truth. Anubis had destroyed everyone, but Oma had ascended them, the entire Abydonian civilization.
Now, back on Earth, Sam was worried, terrified of what had become of Daniel. He would not have let Anubis destroy Abydos unless he was stopped. She knew that he'd crossed the line, broken the highest law of the beings they now knew were the Ancients, the gate-builders. What had happened to him? What was done to him? Would she ever see him again?
Clutching a pillow, Sam curled up on her bed, the bed in which she and Daniel had made love. Closing her eyes, she whispered, "You promised me, Daniel. You promised that you'd come back to me. You can't break your promise. You just can't."
Daniel stood before Oma, waiting to learn what his punishment would be for breaking the rules of the Ancients. He didn't regret what he'd done. He only regretted that he'd been unable to stop Anubis from destroying Abydos. But at least the Abydonians were all safe. Oma had ascended every last one of them. No Goa'uld would ever be able to hurt them again.
Oma gazed at Daniel sadly. "You must have known that striking against Anubis was forbidden, Daniel."
"Yes, I knew. But I also know that he needs to be destroyed." Daniel's gaze hardened. "You, above all people, should know that, too. You shouldn't have stopped me."
"If I had not stopped you, the others would have. There was no choice. And you could not have killed him. Though he is not fully ascended, your power alone could not have destroyed him."
"Maybe not, but it would have slowed him down. Now, he's out there with a weapon that can kill millions with a single shot. He'll go after the other Goa'uld first, and then he'll go after Earth," Daniel's anger deepened, "while you and the rest of the ascended just sit on your asses and do nothing." He shook his head. "You know, when I first ascended, I thought it was great. I thought that I'd be able to do something to make a difference, to help in ways that I couldn't before. But I was wrong. I'm more helpless now than I was when I was human."
Daniel walked away, staring up at the sky. "I can't live like this, Oma." he turned back to the Ancient. "I won't."
Oma sighed. "That choice is in your hands. If the path you are on is not the one that your heart will allow you to follow, you can return to your former path."
"You mean descend."
"Yes. But you must know, Daniel, that, because of what you did, there is a price to be paid. If you choose to descend, all your memories will be taken from you."
"You mean my memories of being ascended?"
"Those and more. Everything."
Daniel was appalled by what she was saying. "You mean that they'll all be gone? The memories of my whole life?"
"Yes. That is the ruling of the others."
Daniel turned away again. If he descended, he'd lose his whole identity. But was that any worse that the existence he was living now? What good were all his memories when he was cursed with the knowledge that he'd never be able to do anything to really help humanity? If he chose to remain ascended, as punishment for what he did he'd probably be exiled to what was left of Abydos for hundreds of years, just as Orlin was forced to remain on Velona. Then he really would be helpless.
Daniel thought about the memories he would be losing, both the good and the bad, and he found his mind focusing on one special moment in particular, one of the most beautiful, precious memories of all. He was going to lose his memories of being with Sam, that incredible night they made love. That realization made tears come to Daniel's eyes. Out of all the memories he had, it hurt the most to know that he was going to lose those.
Daniel turned back around. "Please, Oma. Take all the rest of my memories, but I'm asking you to please let me remember Sam. I love her. To lose all my memories of her, of loving her. . . ."
The sadness in Oma's eyes deepened. "The others would not allow such a thing. I am sorry."
Daniel closed his eyes, his heart breaking. He thought about the promise he made to Sam that he would return to her one day. Would he ever be able to keep that promise? If he did, she would be a stranger to him. He could only hope that, in time, they'd be able to rebuild their friendship and, ultimately, the love they shared.
Drawing in a deep breath, Daniel slowly let it out.
"I'm ready," he said.
Oma nodded and stepped forward. Her eyes caught his one last time. "When a man looks upon a great mountain range towering before him, he may think that there is no way to cross, but the bird does not think such things. It merely opens its wings and flies."
Daniel frowned, wondering what she was saying. Then, all at once, he believed he knew. Grasping onto the hope she'd given him, Daniel closed his eyes. As he felt Oma's power take hold of him and begin the transformation, a single thought repeated in his mind over and over again, the entire force of his will behind it, bent to the task of making it real.
'I will remember you, Sam. I will remember you. I will remem. . . .'
THE END . . . and to be concluded.