Part Four


Daniel yawned, but didn't give in to his need to sleep. He knew he should sleep, but he couldn't leave her alone. Willow was sleeping, but it was marred by dreams. Several times, in the last eight hours, she had cried out various names, reliving some nightmare.

It was four am, eight hours since he found Willow in the shower hysterical. He would never forget the sight. His heart broke the second he saw her, and then when she begged him to tell her it was a lie…

He found himself crying with her.

She had cried herself to sleep, and now he was sitting in a chair next to the bed, ready to help her if she woke up. He never should have left her alone. He knew she was still upset, but he hadn't wanted to embarrass her by staying with her.

God, what an idiot he was?

He was never going to forgive himself for not being there. The second he realized she was from Sunnydale, he had known that was the cause of her reaction, he should have seen this coming.

She was from Sunnydale. The now abandoned town in California where hundreds of parents and teenagers died in a massacre. It had plagued the news for weeks after it happened, America couldn't seem to get enough of it, though no one really knew what happened. The details were sketchy… but there were gangs on PCP involved, a big explosion. People mutilated. Daniel couldn't remember everything. He had still been grieving the loss of his wife when it happened.

But there was a lot of information on the net about it. Daniel had looked it up, on his lap top, while Willow slept next to him and what he read broke his heart a second time. The list of people who died at the massacre was published in every major newspaper.

There were two names that had caught Daniel's attention.

Ira and Sheila Rosenberg.

Willow's parents.

Willow hadn't just lived in Sunnydale, she had been at the massacre.

She was in the graduating class of 1999. One of the few survivors. Now her reaction made sense.

God, he was surprised she was in as good shape as she was.

Her reaction didn't seem unreasonable at all.

It was normal.

Well, what he considered to be a normal and natural reaction. The Air Force wouldn't, which was why he hadn't called Janet. If he took Willow to the base in this state, she'd be off the Stargate Program all together, and Daniel didn't think he could do that.

If Willow was in bad shape when she woke, he'd have no choice. If she was still unable to deal with everything, then he'd agree with the Air Force that she wouldn't be fit to command, but he couldn't make that decision tonight. Daniel wanted to make sure it was the alcohol making Willow overly emotional. She had been drinking double scotches. Just one of those drinks would knock him off his feet, how many did she say she drank, when he’d asked in the parking lot?

Five or Six?

No wonder she couldn't walk or talk properly.

Alcohol didn't always make you forget. Sometimes it made you remember and that's what, he thought, happened to Willow tonight. Finding out about aliens had shattered the world she had created after the her high school graduation. It brought back all the memories and she just hadn't been able to cope.

It's got to be what he *thinks* because he can't *know.*

It was only after the alcohol that she reacted badly. At the base she had impressed everyone, but when she drank…

She didn't forget.

She remembered.

Daniel could only imagine the hell she went through.

Hell?

Maybe her response to where she lived hadn't been so far off.

No. He was doing the right thing by not calling Janet. Willow didn't need any more humiliation. Besides, Daniel was reluctant for another reason. He didn't want Willow to have to go to the Stargate psychiatrist, Dr McKenzie.

Daniel didn't like psychiatrists to start with, but he REALLY didn't like Dr McKenzie. The man had an incredibly closed mind for what he did. Daniel knew that from first hand experience. A few years ago Daniel had been infected by a Goa'uld killing organism. Dr McKenzie had locked him up and labeled him a schizophrenic. It wasn't all Dr McKenzie's fault, he could understand why they would think that, but they should have listened to him, done more tests, anything but lock him up in the padded cell.

He shuddered at the memory.

He didn't want Willow dealing with that man, not in this state.

Not unless he had no choice.

And if Willow hadn't improved by morning – then he'd take her to Janet.

God, he didn't want to. It was the last thing he wanted to do because if he did, her career was over and she was career Air Force. He didn't want to end her career because she got drunk and let her emotions overwhelm her.

"Buffy!" Willow's anguished voice called out.

Damn, another dream. "Willow, shh, it's all right. You're safe." Daniel was well versed with nightmares. The Goa'uld often plagued his nightmares. Some dreams were of waking up and finding the Goa'uld conquering Earth, while others were of a Goa'uld symbiote taking one, or all, of his friends hostage. Some were memories of finding out his wife had been taken over by a Goa'uld, and some were dreams of having to kill her himself.

The worst dreams were of the Goa'uld taking him over.

The Goa'uld were their main threat from space. The parasitic race were extremely powerful, and deadly, having destroyed many worlds in their quest for domination. The Goa'uld were the reason why they trained people like Willow. They were the next generation of warriors designed to fight them.

"Oh god!" She was awake and staring at him horrified. "Oh god, oh god, oh god."

Damn. Daniel had really been hoping Willow would be better when she woke up. He had convinced himself that it had been mostly the alcohol that led to Willow's break down.

Daniel, now more than ever, wanted Willow at the SGC. She was a survivor. Strong. She had dealt with horror and not only survived, but succeeded in becoming one hell of an Air Force officer.

Daniel had dealt with loss all his life. Like Willow, he too had lost both his parents, but he had been extremely young when his own died. He knew how hard it was to deal with something like that. You never got over it. Daniel also knew what it was like to lose friends. He had lost many over the years, not to mention the loss of his wife, Sha're.

When Sha're died, Daniel had resigned from the SGC. He had nothing left to fight for and had no reason to go through the gate. He had been devastated by the loss, god, he loved her so much and losing her, even though she had been lost to him for almost three years before that, had been a crushing blow.

When Daniel made the decision to leave, General Hammond had refused his resignation, asking him to think about it.

Daniel thought Willow deserved the same.

But that hope was becoming faint, Willow was still distraught, maybe he should call–

"Oh god, Dr Jackson. I'm so sorry."

Dr Jackson?

"I'm… Dr Jackson. I can't apologize enough. I'm so sorry…" she clutched the sheet to her body, her face flushed in embarrassment.

Daniel studied her closely. She didn't look completely ok, but she looked better than she had when he found her in the shower. A lot better.

"How are you feeling?" he asked.

"Humiliated," she grimaced.

He smiled, there was a lot of hope. "I meant…"

"Oh, um, better."

"Would you like something to eat?"

She stared at him incredulously, then she looked around. "How long was I asleep?"

"Eight hours."

She looked even more horrified. "You've been with me all night?"

He nodded.

Her face went redder. "I'm sorry, Sir. If you give me a minute, I can get dressed and I'll go."

She wasn't going anywhere, not until they talked and he was sure she was ok. "It's all right. Why don't you get dressed and I'll make you some breakfast. You probably don't feel like a lot."

”No, Sir. Not a lot," her face was slightly green now, "just some coffee and toast would be fine."

Daniel nodded and left the room.

He heard Willow give a groan of what Daniel guessed was embarrassment. The morning after always sucked.

But not so much today.

There was hope.


Part Five

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