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Saint John of the Uncharted Territories

by Marguerite

     Subject: "Saint John of the Uncharted Territories" (Farscape)
     Date: Sunday, April 27, 2003 6:29 PM

     Title: Saint John of the Uncharted Territories
     Author: Marguerite
     Rating: R
     Spoilers: Up to and including "Unrealized Reality"
     Summary: He's just going to surf until he finds her.
     Disclaimer: Property of the Sci-Fi Channel ::spits three
     times to ward off the evil eye::, The Henson Company, Rockne
     S. O'Bannon/David Kemper, and a lot of other people who are
     far cleverer than I.
     Ria wanted Crichton angst for her birthday. That says it



Crichton stands at the lip of the wormhole, strangely unafraid, utterly free, his body shaped like a T, like a cross. Saint John of the Uncharted Territories. He is barefoot; he imagines he has better control that way. It's an interpretive dance, after all. His toes are curled tightly under, and the frilly edges of this newborn wormhole lap at his insteps like the cool waves of the Atlantic.

He's just going to surf until he finds her. He'll will stay on any Moya where Aeryn is alive, he tells himself as he plunges into the vortex. It's smooth, silky-smooth, like Aeryn's hair, like the flesh on the underside of her arm, like her lips, and he lands again on Moya.

This Moya is a terrible place. D'Argo is dying in this universe, still chained to Moya's wall. Aeryn's in this universe, but Crichton cannot bear to stay, because she's just gotten done murdering the female Pilot, the creature's guts covering the black plates of her uniform. He turns away before D'Argo can take his last breath, runs past the Peacekeeper phalanx, and spaces himself just in time to slip into the temporal tornado. I'll stay in the next one, he tells himself. No matter what.

Auntie Em, Auntie Em...

This time he plunges headfirst through the tunnel, has to fight his way free on the other end, gasping, trying to take in a breath.

The great ship rocks from side to side, the walls slick with moisture, thrumming with subaural groans. Moya is giving birth. To John Crichton. He's the offspring in this universe, the Leviathan/Sebacean hybrid Crais had dreamed of. His arms are fused to his side and his legs are the great tail of the baby gunship. Turning around is a nightmare of concentration and fear, but he has to look, has to know. Maybe Aeryn can join with him in this universe, be inside him, be his guide. God knows, Aeryn loved Talyn. He stares into Moya's "face." Looking for Aeryn. Finds her, and she looks at him in loathing and disgust.

He's still shaped like sperm, really, so it's easy to slip into the next wormhole.

Talyn is here again, really Talyn, only he's born insane and is already fighting his mother and her crew. Fires. Fires again, taking D'Argo out while Chiana and Zhaan leap under control panels. Rygel's hit, all three stomachs slithering out of the vast gap in his steaming body.

Aeryn's hit. Screams once, then falls to the floor.

Crichton cradles Aeryn in his arms, feeling her grow ever colder, and keeps his eyes open for the wormhole. It's not fair, Einstein. He's not staying here. This isn't part of the bargain, finding Aeryn alive but only for a microt.


This ride's a little rougher. Bumpier, full of twists and turns. Crichton knows it's not a good sign. On this Moya, Rygel is still a Dominar, has never been held captive, has learned nothing, nothing. Imperious and malodorous, he sits on his thronesled and barks orders at his slaves. Zhaan bows and blesses him. D'Argo stands at his side, growling menacingly at anyone who draws too near. Crichton enjoys seeing Rygel's pet, Scorpius, running on a giant leather-covered wheel in his cage. But that's only in the part of his brain that can think of anything but Aeryn. He goes in search of her, down the endless amber corridors that all smell vaguely of Zhaan's incense trying to mask the stench of unclean Hynerian.

Aeryn's in Pilot's den. It's a scene Crichton has witnessed a thousand times, and it never fails to make his heart skip a beat. So what if Rygel's in charge? Aeryn is here, Aeryn is standing next to Pilot...

Aeryn is shooting her gun. Peacekeeper again, born to kill another innocent Pilot.

Nope. Not staying here.

Next time, he finds Chiana alone on the ship. She knows him somehow, beckons to him, lying spread-eagle on downy cushions. Gray smoke and childish insouciance. He wants to rest, wants to bury himself in her sleek, warm body. Wants to forget Aeryn for an arn or two, get rid of the urgency boiling up inside him. Fluid levels. Only...Aeryn. Aeryn. He caresses Chiana's smooth cheek, then lets the next wormhole take him where it will.

Slip-sliding away, slip-sliding away...

Not Moya this time. Talyn. This isn't just different - it's wrong. It's how Rygel and Stark described it, to the letter, the only distinction in this reality is that he's here and the Other John is not.

So, Einstein, the John who died - he's on Moya, in my place?

Yes. His fate is yours, and yours, his.

Crichton looks down, sees Aeryn rumpled and flushed between the covers. Picks up the mixed scents of Chakkan oil and some ointment Chiana gave her after filching it from Jool. He'll have half a cycle with Aeryn as his lover. Then he'll be dead, and the other John will live.

His fate is yours, and yours, his.

Crichton runs his hands over Aeryn's body. She'll let him, because she thinks he's John. For half a cycle, she'll be his. Even if he has to die, God, it's worth it.

His fate is yours, and yours, his.

The other one, the one Aeryn would've loved, will become him. Will have to face Scorpius and Grayza and the whole frelling lot of them, but, worst of all, he'll have to face Aeryn and the emptiness in her eyes. But this time, he'll live. Who knows? Maybe he'd do a better job of being Crichton than Crichton had done.

He should go back. Make the exchange. But Aeryn breathes evenly, sweet dreams making her stretch and smile in her sleep, and the Crichton who died far too young will not have his life brought to a horrible end. That's for me now, he thinks as he wraps his body around Aeryn's. I get to die this time.

His fate is yours, and yours, his.



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