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stargate, DanielJackson

Week 5, Title: Persistence

Posted on 2014.04.12 at 08:04
Tags: ,
Dark brown tangles of hair splay out across the pillow as Sarah’s eyes flutter open. I lean over to kiss her soft pink lips and the scent of cinnamon engulfs me, I revel in it. A hand finds its way to the back of my neck, her lips press strongly against my own, her beautiful gaze loving. And then she takes a breath. Her eyebrows lift into an expression I’ve come to know as inspiration striking. I chuckle and roll away.  

She takes my hand and swiftly leads me to the lab, as we approach it slips out of hold, only air brushing my fingers as her focus shifts from me to her second love. I follow regardless; I love to watch her work.

Sarah lopes about the place, movements quick but elegant, blackboard to work station and back again. The battery which takes up half of the room hums louder than usual. Blue chalk swishes over the board until it’s covered in scrawled equations. And then her palm slides up to wipe off unimportant pieces, pale blue dust smudging its way across a cheek. She tinkers with springs and tubes and other metal contraptions.

Sarah’s in the zone; it conjures an ethereal beauty in her, face alive, motion graceful and unrelenting. Even after hours there’s no hint of tiredness. She’s impressive, as always. I think if her fellow scientists could see her, they would understand, would stop saying she was throwing away her career for crazy ideas. I have faith in her, maybe that makes us crazy together. After all, who the hell tries to build a time machine?

Then again she does have a history of getting her odd inventions to work, even if none have been this bizarre. I go upstairs to get us something that can be eaten with one hand. Sarah won’t stop her work for trivialities like food.  

When I return, I find her standing on a little round stool, reaching up for a timer device; she then crouches down on the balls of her feet, balancing on the stool as if physics itself couldn’t stop her. Except no, that’s not how she would see it, rather that she’s so in tune with the forces at play, so at one with them, that she is of them. Sarah leans over, still without falling.

Food is consumed in between the turning of screws and pressing of buttons. The lab’s space keeps shrinking as the machine grows bigger. I begin to hope we might be close to success. I wonder whether we’ll need a bigger lab. Sarah steps over large chunks of machinery, feet dancing across the little holes of bare floor. Until finally, as evening encroaches, she comes to a stop. 

Turning to me, she says softly, “Hi.”

“Hi,” I reply, carefully stepping over parts to stand next to her.

“So, moment of truth,” she swallows in anticipation. I’m excited, my gut clenches wildly.

She writes something and places the scrap of paper on a circular protrusion, “I’m going to send this message back in time.”

I nod. Sarah flips a switch. The machine whirrs, lights come on. Our hands entwine. The volume increases, into a roaring hiss. Neither of us takes a breath. It starts vibrating. We are still. The paper sits stagnant. We wait.

There’s a bang. Wisps of smoke appear. Sarah deflates. I tentatively wrap my arms around her and she leans into the embrace.

About half an hour passes with us in that position, neither saying or doing anything, merely here in this new hum-less silence. When she pulls away I say light-heartedly, “remember this, everyone will want to know what happened on the first try.”

She playfully slaps my arm, and as I knew it would; her face dawns with fresh determination.    

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Sarah realises her hands are pressed against the glass of the exhibit and she lets them drop. Wiping a stray tear, and letting out a smile, she looks at the plaque beneath the page.

‘An Account of the first trial run of the timemac-01’

Not so agile anymore, she leans on her cane and slowly turns towards the stage, tucking away a wisp of white hair, listening.

“The newest version can allow someone to travel back in time by a whole three hours!”

There’s a fresh round of cheers (the previous incarnation only manages two hours, twenty seven minutes). Realising she’s about to be mentioned, Sarah ambles closer to the platform.

“And now, to celebrate the launch of the timemac-212, we have the inventor herself! Sarah Houser!”

Having already refused the idea of anyone helping her, with Jerry now gone, she alone slowly traverses the three steps to the sound of loud applause.


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dreamsofspike at 2014-04-12 10:51 (UTC) (Link)
Oh this is so bittersweet. I love that Sarah accomplished what she set out to (more or less) but it tears at my heart that it's not enough to give her what she'd want, to allow her to go back in time to when the love of her life was still with her...

You really got across the mood, the tone of the story very well. Love it!
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-12 10:55 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, so glad you liked it :)
waltzmatildah at 2014-04-12 11:07 (UTC) (Link)
Aw, man! You've killed it again. I am officially jealous :)

Now to try and bash something out myself.
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-12 11:12 (UTC) (Link)
Wow, that's such a massive compliment, thank you so much, so happy you liked it :).

Can't wait to read what you write :).
x_disturbed_x at 2014-04-12 11:28 (UTC) (Link)
Aw, I hope maybe she'll be able to go back one day in time far enough to be with him again.
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-12 11:33 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :). She's pretty old, so it seems unlikely, but you never know ;).
adoptedwriter at 2014-04-12 15:25 (UTC) (Link)
Bittersweet and lovely. AW
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-12 15:26 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked :)
Veronica Rich
veronica_rich at 2014-04-12 16:22 (UTC) (Link)
That it doesn't allow big leaps and goes through so much tinkering for so little is a surprisingly realistic view of an admittedly fantasy machine - good job.
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-12 16:26 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, yeah, that's what I was going for :)
Bridget Ilene Delaney
kagomeshuko at 2014-04-12 18:58 (UTC) (Link)
What a sad entry . . .
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-12 19:00 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, yeah, my muse seems to want to write the sad stuff :)
penpusher at 2014-04-13 12:42 (UTC) (Link)
Playing with time rarely results in completely happy endings. But this was neat!
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-13 12:43 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
halfshellvenus at 2014-04-14 06:48 (UTC) (Link)
I like that the machine kept expanding, filling more and more space-- because how could a time machine be anything but increasingly large and complex?
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-14 06:50 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, yeah my thoughts exactly :)
kajel at 2014-04-14 14:59 (UTC) (Link)
This was lovely!
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-14 15:00 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
eska818 at 2014-04-15 02:20 (UTC) (Link)
._. So sad, but I love that she never stopped trying.
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-15 05:44 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
Vice Captain of the Universe
sweeny_todd at 2014-04-15 03:12 (UTC) (Link)
I love the description of Sarah working in the lab - I think because I can empathise. (although I have never built anything as awesome as a time machine). I enjoyed how you explored the 'success' of the machine :-)
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-15 05:44 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked the description, I was tossing that around my head for a while :)
Jemima Pauler
jem0000000 at 2014-04-15 22:48 (UTC) (Link)
This feels so apt to the slow way that devices usually get off the ground when they're new -- a lot of work for baby steps. :)
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-16 05:25 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
catwomon at 2014-04-16 01:39 (UTC) (Link)
I like this. I don't know what else to say, but I like it!
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-16 05:26 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, glad you liked it :)
Laura, aka "Ro Arwen"
roina_arwen at 2014-04-16 22:08 (UTC) (Link)
This was lovely!
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-17 05:36 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
A Karmic Sandbox
karmasoup at 2014-04-16 22:34 (UTC) (Link)
Aw. Behind every great discovery, there is a supporter who always knew it would happen, and the triumph of that realization is bittersweet without that supporter to share in it. This is sweet. Thanks for sharing.
swirlsofblue at 2014-04-17 05:37 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :)
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