Set S6, of course. Short and weird. Rated R for some potty-mouth name-calling.
Big brown boots. Lace ups, high up, for optimal support. A jacket, a thick one against the bite of Colorado winters. Cuff. Button. Soft lining inside the sleeve. Above the jacket, her eyes raising as though in contemplation of the heavens, above the peg where the thick soft jacket hangs, above the place where the big brown boots sit. A simple sign.
His name. Or the closest thing.
His clothes are still there. The same ones he'd been wearing when he'd arrived to tell them all about Harry Fucking Maybourne's proposal.
His clothes haven't been touched. Mainly because she made it very clear to everyone concerned that she did not WANT them touched.
She never had his bizarre locker room fixation with Daniel. Maybe because she knew that he no longer had any need for the clothing that had hung in that alcove. Where he was, being 'properly attired' wasn't an issue.
But when the Colonel got home, he would want his clothes. His boots, his jacket. It was cold in Colorado, cold here, so he would want them and they would be here, waiting.
When he got home.
She used to think "when I get him home". But not lately.
She wants to hit somebody. Preferably Harry Fucking Maybourne. But she can't find HIM, either.
Half-dressed, standing in the locker room, holding on to an empty sleeve as though it were a grasping hand, a steadying anchor.
She prays. She sits down and, silently, she promises that if she can just get them back, she WON'T hit Maybourne, even though he deserves it. But mostly she just prays.
She considers how long it's been since she went to church, and she wonders if God ever gets tired of people only coming to Him when they want something.
And she IS selfish, so selfish. She doesn't want O'Neill back because he's a good man or a good friend or a good commander or any other acceptable reason. She wants him back so the emptiness inside her will go back to being half-full. She wants him back so she can stop being the sharp, unforgiving dragon lady she's become. She wants him back because SHE WANTS HIM and that's all there is to it and she's a selfish bitch and God must be so damned tired of selfish bitches like her.
She cries. She wonders if He will consider her tears worthy of His notice. But mostly she just cries.
Teal'c comes. She's embarrassed but he was there and he understands, and he offers his arms as safe harbor and she accepts. Momentarily she marvels at her friendship with this man, a friendship which she doesn't know the hows or whys or whens of but which exists all the same. She marvels. But no safe harbor is permanent.
His words are soft and relatively few. He understands her crisis of faith in herself. In her abilities. He reminds her of the good work she's done, the tribulations she's triumphed over, the lives she's saved. He gives her a pep talk and shamefully she indulges.
As kind as Teal'c is, it isn't Teal'c she wants to hear these words from. Selfishly she wants to hear them from O'Neill, not because she insists on regular ego-boosts from her coworkers or because professional praise is all she imagines hearing from him, but simply because hearing the words from him would mean that he is HERE. Here, home, safe. Not lost in the universe with Colonel Harry Goddamn Fucking Maybourne.
Teal'c leaves. She tells him she'll be right out.
The room is dark, but she can see. Big brown books. Thick soft jacket. It's cold in Colorado.
It's cold here.