Series: The Haunting of Carson Beckett
Warnings: Character death, strong language, and slash
Fandom: Stargate Atlantis
Characters: All but focuses on Carson Beckett
Disclaimer: I don't know SGA and I'm not making money off of this.
Notes: Wow, this is going to be a lot longer than I thought. I thought it would just be like five chapters now I am thinking it will be a lot more. Thanks for the reviews!
Summary: "The air grew colder and Carson shivered before sitting up in
bed, 'It's you again, isn't it?'
--Chapter Two - Without You--
Carson's sleep was, thankfully, dreamless. That was not to say it was a peaceful sleep. He tossed and turned and woke up in cold sweat for no reason. But whatever ultimate power was up there (if there was one) blessed him with no dreams so he didn't have to see anything that might have broken his head more.
When he woke up, his room was strangely cold. Like someone had left the window open on a snowy day. He shivered and sneezed and shook his head, trying to clear it. When he stood he thought his feet would freeze to the floor. He showered, allowing the steam to roll into his room and heat it a little. Then he poured himself the biggest cup of coffee he could. It wasn't until he was slipping his pants on that he realized something was wrong. And it only took a second after that to remember the day before. His heart and face sank in a way that made him look just as tired as he felt.
Sighing and forcing all thoughts of Rodney McKay out of his head, Carson started toward the mess hall. He had work to get done. And so help him, he would actually be getting it done today. Even if it killed him. John was sitting at one of the tables and Carson joined him after getting his food.
"Feeling any better today?" John asked.
"About as good as I can feel," Carson replied. "Zelenka come up with anything new while I was asleep?"
"No not yet. Worked pretty hard all through the night. He said it's weird without being yelled at. He thinks it was actually helping him."
Carson smiled and even managed a chuckle. "Aye, well, I can see how-" He stopped short, the fork, which was half way to his mouth, dropped suddenly on his plate. The room had gone strangely cold and he was able to see the transparent shape or Rodney standing behind Sheppard. "Not again."
"What is it?" John turned around quickly, frowned and turned back to Carson. "What are you staring at?"
"You don't see that?" He glanced at John for just a second then back at the shape… but it was gone. I'm going insane, Carson realized. This place has finally driven me insane.
"Maybe you should talk to-"
No! He was not talking to one of the shrinks. Not now, not ever. "I need to get to work." He stood quickly.
"You didn't finish your—"
"I'm not hungry." He was gone like the wind and in his office in a flash. He had seen that damn figment again. He couldn't even sit down. He started pacing the length of his office. What was wrong with him? He must be going crazy, why else would he keep seeing a missing man around him?
But what… "What if it really is his ghost?" Carson asked the empty room. "What if he's dead and now I'm being haunted because I was the cause of his dead?" That made him press his back against the wall and sink down to the floor. What if there was no hope and all of Zelenka's work would show that the man had died?
He shut his eyes quickly. If that was true, then he deserved to be haunted. This was all his fault. He felt his breathing quicken and he started to shake. I've killed him, he thought. I did it. This is my fault! Oh, Rodney, what have I done?
The knock on the door went unheard. The accusing voice head was too loud, screaming at him, calling him a killer. He dug his in his hair eyes wide and staring at nothing. 'Murderer, murderer,' the voice yelled.
Weir's voice made him jump. He realized suddenly that she had a hand on his shoulder. He looked up at her, completely embarrassed to see he was still shaking. " Elizabeth," he said, his voice weak and distant.
"Colonel Sheppard said he was worried about you, now I see why." She knelt down next to him, her hand still on his shoulder. "Did you get any sleep last night?" He nodded. "Have you eaten anything today?" He shook his head no. "I think you should talk to Heightmeyer."
"I'm fine," he said, even though he knew he didn't look or feel fine. "I don't need to see—"
"Please don't make me order you, Carson." Her was still soft, but her eyes were firm. "You need to talk about this. I know you… cared for Rodney—"
"Why do you use past tense?"
Elizabeth opened and closed her mouth for a moment. "Care for him," she said.
"Do you think he's not coming back? Is that why you are doing this? You are trying to make me deal with the fact that I may never see Rodney McKay again? Is that what all this is?"
"No! I have every reason to believe Dr. Zelenka will get Rodney back safe and sound. But listen to yourself, Carson. This doesn't sound like you at all. I've never seen you in such a state and I've seen a lot of things while we've been here. You need to talk to someone, you need to sort this out."
She was right. Carson hated her for it. He just wanted to curl into a ball and stay that way forever. This wasn't him and he knew it. But when one kept seeing the shape of a person who couldn't possibly be there…
"I'll see her this afternoon," Carson promised. Elizabeth smiled and gave his shoulder a squeeze.
"Thank you. I think you’ll feel better after you have talked with her. And I want you to take the day off.”
“But I have work to do,” he glanced at his desk where a pile of papers waited for him. “No, I need to do that work. It will take my mind off things away. Please don’t make me stop.”
Weir sighed and seemed to think for a moment before she finally nodded. “Alright. But you will need to eat something soon. You are no good to us if you pass out. And don’t worry. Zelenka is smart, he’ll work this out.”
Carson didn’t even bother to try and smile. He simply nodded. He closed his eyes for a moment. The room had gotten slightly colder and he was afraid that if he opened his eyes, a ghost would be waiting for him.
“Well, how are you feeling, Dr. Beckett?”
He didn’t want to be here. But he tried to smile. He’d managed to get some work done… it was sloppy work but it was done. He had managed to force some food down his throat. He was still could hardly look up with worry. He was working on convincing himself that was it. It was just stress.
“I’m fine,” He said with a small smile.
“Dr. Weir said you hand a small break down in your office.” Heightmeyer folded her fingers together and tilted her head to one side. “Would you like to talk about that?”
“Just a little bit of stress. It wasn’t much of a break down, really. Just momentary out of character act.”
“Does this have to do with Dr. McKay’s disappearance?”
Carson flinched just a little and didn’t answer.
“You cared for him, didn’t you? Are you worried that you won’t get to tell him what you feel?”
“Aye, I suppose that’s so.” His voice was very small.
“Why didn’t you?”
“I was afraid. Haven’t you ever been afraid?”
She smiled and nodded. “Yes. I’ve been afraid. But what do you think you were afraid of?”
“What everyone is afraid of, I suppose. All the clichés of it: he wouldn’t want me, things wouldn’t work out. Nothing new. I didn’t tell him and now I’m paying for it.”
He didn’t answer. She wouldn’t believe him. No one would. Suddenly there was a voice in his ear: “Dr. Beckett, please get to the science lab. Zelenka’s found something.” Carson stood up quickly.
“I’m afraid we’ll need to finish this later. They’ve found something.” He really wasn’t sorry to go
“That’s fine.” He started to leave. “Dr. Beckett?” He paused and looked at her. She walked over to her desk and wrote something on a slip of paper and handed it to him. It was a name: Orenda Carver. “This is a friend of mine. I think she might be able to offer a little more insight then I. She deals with … people leaving.”
Carson stared at the name and then nodded. “Aye, I’ll think about it. Excuse me.” He shoved the name in his pocket and hurried off to the lab. Weir and Sheppard where already there talking with Zelenka. “What is it? Did you get him back?”
“Not exactly,” Zelenka said. “But we managed to figure out what it does. It’s a transporter.”
“Where does it transport people to?” Weir asked.
“From what we can tell? To another dimension. We managed to successfully transport some mice there. But there doesn’t… there doesn’t seem a way to get them back.”
“So McKay is stuck in an alternate universe?” Sheppard raised an eyebrow. “And not dead.”
“Well… actually,” Zelenka sighed. “For all we know he could be dead. It’s impossible to tell.”
Carson shivered suddenly and gasped as Rodney’s image appeared behind Zelenka. He stared at Carson and pointed to the gray device that had sent him away. He mouths something but his lips were moving too fast. “What?” Carson said. “Slow down.”
Everyone blinked and looked at him. “I was just asking,” Weir said before looking at Zelenka again, “if there was any way of sending someone or something that could search out the universe and find Rodney.”
Whatever Dr. Weir was saying, Carson didn’t care. Rodney was trying hard to speak but was getting annoyed. He took a deep breath and sighed. He closed his eyes for a moment. “Bridge,” he finally said in a distant waving voice. “Find -- Carson -- need you’re --.”
“What bridge, I don’t understand! Talk to me!” Carson moved toward the transparent shape, unaware of everyone staring at him.
Rodney tried and reached out to touch him but then, just like before, he was gone. “No!” Carson screamed. “No stop this! Why are you haunting me like this? Rodney!” But the ghost didn’t come back.
“Carson!” John said and held on to his shoulders. The Doctor looked at him. “What are you seeing? Rodney is not here.”
“But he was! It’s his ghost! He’s been trying to tell me something and I can’t figure out what!”
“Carson…” Elizabeth started.
“I know!” He said taking a deep breath. “I am not talking sense. And before you said it I’ll talk to someone. But I’m telling you now I ‘m not insane. I know what I saw.” He glared at them. “He’s trying to tell me something. And I’m going to figure out what.”