hattie_notqueen: (Excuse Moi?!)
Any change, any loss, does not make us victims. Others can shake you, surprise you, disappoint you, but they can't prevent you from acting, from taking the situation you're presented with and moving on. No matter where you are in life, no matter what your situation, you can always do something. You always have a choice and the choice can be power.
- John Donne

========================

"The answer is no, Hattie, and that's final."

Daniel Jackson's voice was the same irritating matter-of-fact tone he'd always taken when he'd found a new translation that he was certain was correct. The only difference was that this one had the added 'Dad' filter thrown in and Hattie had to grit her teeth to keep her temper.

"You can't make that kind of decision for me," she pointed out. "I'm not a kid any more."

It was a harsh point of contention between them. THE point of contention, as it were. True, he'd seen her grow up. He'd educated her in all the finer points of literature, math, science and more, not to mention the pick-ups she'd had from Sam and Landry, Teal'c and Cam. He wanted her to go back so that her mother could experience all those things with her, too.

He wanted her to have a normal childhood. She knew this. Just as he knew that she considered what she'd lived and breathed to be perfect. Living eighteen years in .08 of a second was fine to her. It was what she had known. Exploring the Ancient database had given her a different kind of education, but one that was rounded, nonetheless. She had no doubt that she would pass any college entrance exam upon returning to Earth.

They were all going back, that much was fact. Teal'c had been chosen to stay old since he had so many years on the rest of them due to his previous symbiote and current Tretonin use. The only remaining question was Hattie.

She was fighting tooth and nail to get to stay old.

"You'd take your childhood, watching you grow up into the beautiful woman you are, from your mother?" It wasn't a new argument, not all on it's own. The 'watching you grow up into what you are now' bit was, and Hattie was prepared.

"Dad. Who's to say I'd be the person I am now if I grew up on Earth? I wouldn't know half the things I do now, I would have had to suffer through public education, I wouldn't have unlimited access to galactic information and-" She sighed. "You'd take my childhood from me? All the Christmases, the birthday's, the... the LEARNING, everything that makes me ME from me, now?"

Hattie was dangerously close to crying.

"I wouldn't remember, honey," Daniel pointed out, taking off his glasses to wipe at his own eyes. "I won't remember any of that."

Shaking her head as she lowered it into her hands, she felt the tears come. "I can't have my life taken from me, Dad. Please. You have a life to go back to, I'll just go back to diapers and never knowing the awesome things I have and it feels like such a loss."

"Even if you never knew it was a loss?"

She just nodded. There were things they never talked about, things she hadn't told him about. Things he might have known about, but things they'd never actually discussed. And it was heartbreaking to know that all of it would be gone, too, with no one to remember how wonderful and beautiful it had been.

Quietly, her dad spoke again. "He wouldn't remember, either."

"All part of the tragedy, Dad," she said as she stood. He could make the decision, but she had to decide how she'd react. She wouldn't become a sobbing wreck. Nodding once at him, she left the room, taking a deep breath and heading to the workout room.

Once there, she took her frustrations out on a punching bag until her hands were raw, then winced as she ran them under cold water in her quarters.

"It'll all be for the best," came a voice as her door swished open.

Hattie sighed and looked down, patting at her knuckles with a light blue towel which she tossed into the sink. "Glad to see you're taking it with such a hearty attitude."

"Don't be like that," Cam said, crossing the room and wrapping his arms around her just as she sat, which caused them to tumble onto the bed. "Even if you stayed an adult, I'd forget and treat you horrible like I did in the beginning."

She nodded and rolled into his chest, burying her face there. "I know. I don't want to forget this, Cam, even if I'm the only one who remembers."

Sensing the seriousness of her tone and feeling how tense she was, Cam tightened his grip on her and kissed the top of her head. "Then talk to your dad again, sweetie. Tell him. You always have a choice. And the choice can be power."

"Do you want me to remember, Cam? Or would it be easier if I forgot? Would you rather see me two again?"

"If you remember this," he murmured as he kissed her gently, "and that I love you," he whispered, "I don't care how old either of us are. Talk to your dad."

Hattie nodded, feeling more like she had someone on her side, the one person who mattered. Her dad, for all his good intentions, couldn't prevent her from staying an adult.

When it came time, when the barrier went up, Hattie hugged Teal'c for the moment it took for the ship to explode. The heat, the intense heat, then black nothing-

- as she was shoved to the side with more explosions and she swore she saw a little girl vanish. She lay on the ground, her arms covering her head from the sparks and falling debris until she heard Sam Carter shout they were entering hyperspace. The pull behind her solar plexus gave her pause and then she stood, brushing off her uniform.

The look in her father's eyes as he searched for the toddler he'd been holding onto and the way it changed into one of knowing when he finally caught sight of her was almost heartbreaking. She swallowed and took a step forward. "Hi, Dad."


Hattie Jackson
Stargate OC
1042 Words (not including quote)

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Catherine Hatshepsut (Hattie) Jackson

March 2009

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