A Reaper's Work is Never Finished Part TwoFandom:
Rodney, Lorne, Carson, John with some Lorne/Cameron, Rodney/Sam, John/Vala, Jack/Daniel... preslashy Rodney/LornePrompt:
Grim Reaper Carson Beckett didn't know what he was getting into when he tried to kill ten-year old John Sheppard's hamster. Author's Notes:
So this is a The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy and Dead Like Me fusion with SGA, with Carson as a Grim Reaper, John and Rodney in place of Billy and Mandy and Lorne just kind of thrown in for that special Rodney/Lorne twist. Many thanks to seikaitsukimizu
for the inspiration and the title. Enjoy
In retaliation, Rodney dates as many women as will have him.
He’s not very good at it, in fact he sucks at it and the only reason women date him is because he’s brilliant, but they soon get over that and Rodney’s left without a girlfriend as he watches Evan and Cameron fall more in love with each passing day.
John’s not around. He’s always somewhere else and that leaves Carson to go out for drinks with Rodney to wallow in their dateless state.
“It doesn’t matter for you. You’re dead.” Rodney says.
Carson smiles and takes a sip of his whiskey wishing it didn’t take so many to get him plastered.
“I’m sure things will work out for the better.” Carson says.
He doesn’t believe it though.
A year passes, a year in which Cameron and Evan move in together, John flies more planes in far off places and gets promoted to Captain, Rodney makes a few groundbreaking discoveries and Carson takes a few souls.
They’ve almost gotten to the point where it doesn’t matter and, even though Carson still gets annoyed whenever Cameron opens his mouth, he’s learned to go with the flow.
He spends less time with them. John’s gone more then he’s around, Evan’s off living his life and Rodney’s doing the scientist thing. Every once in awhile, Rodney will invite him for drinks and Carson will go because even though he’s got Reaper friends, he misses them.
They’re almost thirty when Samantha Carter enters the picture.
She’s stunning really, short blonde hair and pretty blue eyes. She’s petite, but still curvy and she’s smart, as smart as Rodney and Rodney’s taken with her immediately.
He thinks Rodney’s going to be happy now or at least he hopes so and he goes to the dinners they invite him to even though he’s single and it feels weird. He watches the two happy couples and part of him enjoys it.
Part of him likes that they’re happy because they’re his friends and he wants them to be happy. But he feels the loss of John. Notices that John isn’t there, smiling and grinning with them and it feels like an incomplete picture without him.
They’re thirty one when John almost looses his leg.
“Carson stop fussing.” John says.
But Carson can’t because he used to be a doctor and he knows, knows what all those medical and Latin words mean and they’re all just fancy for nerve damage and may never be able to walk again.
And he knows that John knows too. John’s too good at reading people and he’s probably read the doctors like books. He hears Evan and Cameron trying to be patient and convincing and supportive and he hears Rodney yelling at various hospital staff while Sam tries to calm him down and soon they’re arguing.
He sees the pitiful look on John’s face. The one that says he knows that he’s never going to fly again and no amount of medals or rank is going to change that fact because he’s a grounded pilot, a bird without wings.
And Carson, Carson who is death personified for real, just holds his hand and tries to silently convey that there’s more to live for.
Vala soon blows into their lives, loud and brash and Carson thinks she’s on drugs. If he could just get a good look at her pupils he’d know for sure. John seems taken with the very idea of her, what she means and he’s just looking for something. Something that will distract him and that freedom that he once got from flying, he gets from being with her, high and not caring.
“She’s bad for you, John.” Rodney says pleadingly.
Carson backs him up, but John’s twitchy, fidgeting like he’s high again and Carson wants to punch something. He knows Rodney and Evan do too, only they want to punch Vala.
She stays, makes a menace of herself at dinner parties, the same dinner parties that forced John to bring her in the first place. The couples dinners. Carson gets that though because he’s felt out of place as well sometimes.
Vala gets pregnant and John wakes up, fast and hard and after Carson slaps him a few times. He tries to get her to stop, but he’s about as successful as they had been with him. He spends his time trying to keep her straight and make his apartment as baby friendly as possible.
“Here’s your job.” Jack says holding out Carson’s post-it.
Carson grumbles and takes it. Looks down at the name, V. Mal Do
ran, and throws his fork at Jack. Teyla, Elizabeth, Ronon, Laura and Daniel stop eating to stare at him.
“I can’t do this one.” Carson says.
He pictures Vala, swollen belly despite only gaining twenty pounds. He thinks of John, buying baby clothes and painting the nursery neon green. He thinks of the look on John’s face should they both die and he can’t be the one to do that. Not to John.
“You have to.” Jack says.
“No, give it to someone else.”
“The kid’s going to blame you even if it isn’t you.”
“I’m not going to kill an innocent child.”
“Who said anything about a child.”
In the end, Carson gets shot for the eighth time since becoming a Reaper. He touches Vala’s shaking shoulder as she holds up the gun at the grocery store clerk, demanding money as she probably thinks no one would shoot a pregnant woman.
Carson keeps her alive for as long as he can, his doctor’s training kicking in, before he has to run away from the police. He waits until he’s stopped bleeding before he changes his clothes and heads to the hospital.
“Am I dead?” Vala asks as they step through the doors of the hospital.
“Yes.” Carson says.
“But how come you can see me?” Vala asks.
“Because I’m a Grim Reaper.”
“Where’s your scythe?” She says jokingly.
Carson rolls his eyes.
“We don’t have them.”
He thinks she probably still thinks she’s alive, that this is all just some bad dream and he’s had to deal with this before. He knows how to react, what to say and how to make them feel better.
He sees John standing there, face a bit wet like he’s been crying and he’s holding onto something. Carson guesses that it’s something of Vala’s. He looks up, eyes accusing and Carson knows that Jack had been right.
John would have blamed him even if it hadn’t been him.
“I’m really dead.” Vala says.
Her voice sounds stricken and he thinks if she could, she’d cry. Carson just shakes his head and turns around. Doesn’t want to see John’s face or Rodney’s or Evan’s because they know, they knew that this is his job, that this is how it works.
“You… does John know that you’re a Grim Reaper?” Vala asks.
He can see her lights coming up, a big ship and he has to wonder about that because he never got to know Vala well enough to know these things.
“He’s known since he was ten.” Carson says.
“I suppose I’m meant to walk towards the light. Kind of cliché you know.”
“I don’t make it work like that. It just is.” Carson says.
She starts to walk toward them, determined look on her face and she’s halfway there before she turns around, bright smile on her face and she cocks an eyebrow, hands on her hips.
“I hate to put you in this type of position, but perhaps you could tell John something for me.”
Carson takes a deep breath and nods.
“Tell him that I like the name Vincent.”
She disappears after that, into the lights like every soul Carson’s ever set free and Carson truly does feel dead at that moment.
He’s not there when Vincent gets named, but he relays the message anyway.
Carson knows to stay away. Away from them and he guesses that this is the reason Jack had given him those talks about not getting too close to humans. But then Carson gets pissed thinking about it because Jack had let it happen. Jack had given him that post-it with the name P. Snuggles on it that brought him into John and Rodney’s life in the first place.
He drinks because it’s all he can do and he goes to the diner, eyes not nearly as blood shot as they should be considering how much alcohol he’s consumed in the night time. They all give him pitying looks and he just takes his post-it like a man.
He’s a Grim Reaper. This is what he does.
He works in jobs during his lunch break or after work and he doesn’t complain when Jack starts giving him more than one post-it a day just to keep things from overflowing. He may get angry when he sees Daniel and Jack together, being as happy as they can be for the time they have, but he contains it.
Its three months later when John comes knocking at his door.
He’s got Vincent in his arms. Vincent who’s screaming and crying and John looks frazzled. Carson had heard from Rodney that Vincent would be going home this week after spending months in the hospital for being born premature.
“I can’t get him to stop.” John says.
Carson frowns, takes Vincent from John’s arms and starts to rock him gently as John flops down on the couch.
“I’ve done everything they’ve told me to do and he just keep crying. I’ve feed him, changed him, rocked him… I don’t know what he wants.”
Carson wants to question why he’s the first person John had thought to go to, but Vincent’s starting to sputter, cries falling in intensity and Carson thinks he might just get him to go to sleep with a little more prompting.
By the time Vincent’s asleep, a bit pitiful and red looking, but otherwise pretty healthy, John’s asleep too, mouth hanging open and Carson takes a moment to see just how much John’s really grown up noting the limp hair and the big circles under his eyes before he sighs and goes to find some place comfortable to sit.
It works this way for two weeks. Two weeks where John’s practically gotten everything Carson owns, which is admittedly not a lot, packed up and moved to his apartment with the help of Evan and Cameron.
Two weeks where Carson does nothing but watch Vincent, show John how to take care of Vincent and sleep. He calls into work everyday saying he’s got a really bad sickness, forges his own doctor’s notes until his job tells him it’s the end of the line and he either shows up or gets fired.
“Quit.” John says as he bathes Vincent.
Carson raises an eyebrow, but John’s too busy making cooing noises at Vincent to really care.
“I can’t just quit. I need this job. I don’t exactly make anything from taking souls.”
“You can take care of Vince. If you really want to get paid for it, I’m sure I can manage.”
Carson rolls his eyes because he knows John could probably afford to take care of all three of them on his salary, but that’s not the point.
“You want a Grim Reaper to watch your son everyday?”
“You watched me when I was little and I turned out alright.” John says with a grin.
John sighs, picks up Vince and starts to dry him, Vince giggling and wiggling as he does so.
“Look. You could work. You could keep a job you hate and take souls on your off time. Or… you could help me out here. I have no idea what I’m doing.”
“Oh and I do?”
“Yeah. You’re a doctor.”
“I was a geneticist. I wasn’t a pediatrician.”
“You still know more about kids than I do. Come on, you know you want to do this more than you want to go back to that job.”
In the end, Carson quits.
He looks up and sees Evan standing in the doorway. He looks years older, much older than thirty-three and he’s holding a plastic cup of coffee. His face is resigned and he’s looking at Carson. Not at the person sleeping somewhat peacefully in the bed next to him.
Cameron sleeps, drug induced to keep him from feeling the pain that Carson feels as well. Not because he’s a Reaper, even though over the years he’s been able to predict when death is going to come long before it does. He feels it because he’s a doctor and he knows it. This is something that used to be his life.
He’s paler, almost smaller looking. Not nearly as imposing as he used to be. Carson’s seen people like this, as a Reaper and as a doctor, but it’s different. This isn’t exactly someone who used to be a friend, not exactly someone who Carson had hated, but it’s someone he knows. Someone who’s favorite ice cream and color and movie and thing to say is something Carson knows.
“I didn’t know it’d be you.” Evan says.
“I didn’t know it’d be me either.” Carson says.
Evan nods like he can except that and Carson thinks he can. He’s always been better able to get the whole grim reaper thing than John or Rodney ever had been able to. Rodney with his science to comfort him and John with his stoic attitude… they’ve never really gotten it.
“It’s not like I could have stopped you.” Evan says.
“No one can.”
He’s death. He comes to take lives. He’s done it before, to people he’s known even, but this is different.
“What’s it like?” Evan asks.
“I can’t really tell you.”
“A Reaper thing?”
“Yeah. We’re not… the living keep on going if they don’t know what it’s like being dead.”
“That bad, huh?”
Carson smiles and shakes his head. Rodney must be subconsciously rubbing off on him because he’s never known Evan to be that pessimistic.
“Or that good depending on how you look at it.”
Evan nods, takes a deep breath and walks over to Cameron’s side. He touches Cameron’s face lightly, cards his fingers through the mostly short hair and sighs.
“You know… we weren’t even that close at the end there.”
Carson’s not sure he wants to be hearing this and, any other person, he wouldn’t. But this is Evan so he makes the exception.
“Three years with a person and… it just wasn’t the same anymore. He kept going places for his work, government worker and he couldn’t understand why I didn’t want to be that anymore. I couldn’t understand why he wanted to be that.”
He squeezes Cameron’s hand and takes in a deep, shuddery breath.
“How much longer does he have?”
It’s not something he’s supposed to disclose, but it’s not like Evan could save him even if he does know.
“You know the exact time.”
“What happens if you’re late?”
“Something fairly nasty. They die anyway. Only they feel it. Get stuck inside their body until we come and take them out. Trust me. I tried that one once before.”
“Being a grim reaper wasn’t something you wanted to be in life, huh.”
“It was exactly the opposite.”
One minute, Carson thinks in his head. One minute and the life of Cameron Mitchell, the admittedly short life cut down by the killer that is cancer, comes to a close and then Carson will guide him towards his lights and go back to watching Vincent.
“I don’t even know if he can hear me right now.” Evan says.
Carson watches as Evan leans down and kisses his forehead. He can’t make out what Evan whispers, but he doesn’t think he needs too.
He can tell without hearing it.
The time comes and Carson swipes his hand across Cameron’s arm. Feels Cameron’s soul leave his body and then the heart monitor beeps.
But Carson doesn’t stay long enough to watch the struggle.
He just walks out, Cameron yelling at him and Evan and the doctors and everyone that can’t hear him and Carson knows this part.
When everything dies down, he takes Cameron out into the woods. He looks less sickly now and that always seems to amaze Carson. Some will look the same, some will look better. It just depends on the person.
“What the hell is going on here?” Cameron asks.
Carson watches as his lights come up, a plane and it’s a bit predictable, but nice.
“I got that part. Why are you here? Why can you see me? What am I doing walking around?”
“You’re going to miss your plane.” Carson says pointing toward the lights.
Cameron looks up and over. Sees them of in the distance and a big smile graces his face. He doesn’t ask anymore questions as he walks toward them, doesn’t even look back and Carson stands there long after he’s gone. Part Three74/100