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Title: Twofold

Author: Can (lucyc_23455@yahoo.com)

Rating: G

Summary: After Dog With Two Bones

Disclaimer: I don't own them

Thanks to Neuroscpr for reading

The blackness of space could be menacing if you weren't used to it. In this part of the universe there was not so much as a star to even gaze at.

They were all gone. Everyone who meant anything to him, and it was his fault. He wanted it all, Aeryn, his friends and Earth. He had been greedy, but didn't realize it until he found himself alone in his ship in this great expansion of space.

Lost, bewildered and alone, he finally understood what the old woman was trying to say. She had told him to 'see the truth, confront your fear'. Well he finally understood, but too late.

As the module floated aimlessly in space, John checked his instruments. His two most important resources, oxygen and fuel, were getting dangerously low.

"John you know we must do something. We don't have much time." The clone, Harvey, was intruding into his thoughts.

"Go away, Harvey! Just go away! You and Scorpy are part of the reason I'm in this predicament! So just shut up and leave me the hell alone!" John had made many mistakes in his life and Harvey was one of them. John had fallen back on the clone in his loneliness. He had allowed him to become a part of him. It was easier than fighting off the emptiness he felt in Aeryn's absence. Harvey had served a purpose for a time, but John didn't make him go away when he should have.

"But John you can't mean that. We are in this together. If you die, I die. I'm not ready!"

John knew it was time. He knew he had to stand on his own now without the clone. "Can it, Harvey. I'm putting you in the dumpster for good! I'm taking back control!" Part of John still wanted to hold on to him, but he knew he would always be there. He was just putting him aside for as long as his subconscious would allow it.

"Done. Sorry Harv, I should've done it sooner. Never should have let you stay after the chip was gone." John felt empty. Now he had no one to talk to. It really didn't matter, he wouldn't be around much longer if his instrument readings were correct, but at least he would die without voices in his head.

He was getting lightheaded now, as the lack of oxygen was starting to play into his thoughts. 'Confront my fears.' Yeah-old woman, thanks for the help just a little too late.

My greatest fear happened. Aeryn left me again, perhaps for the last time. Fate was going to play a joke on the both of them this time. They would never meet again as John Crichton was going to die in the ship that had brought them together. 'How's that for fate!' John was giggling to himself now.

"Fate! Frell fate!" He was surprised that he could still feel anger, numb as he felt.

"Well Aeryn, I guess you knew something I didn't. You don't have to face your fear now. I'm definitely not gonna die in your arms, just alone. At least he had you there with him when he died." The emptiness hurt now, as his lungs were laboring for air.

John thought of the other one as he chuckled slightly. 'At least you got to love her, my man. I hear you did it well.' John grimaced, wishing for just one more touch of her soft skin, one more look at her beauty before the blackness took him for good.

He opened the flight recorder, knowing his time was near the end.

"Hey Aeryn. Things are a little tense right now. Don't think I'm gonna make it. My oxygen and fuel are almost out, but I want you to know what happened to Moya. She was swallowed by a damn wormhole. Do you believe it, a frelling wormhole! Go figure!"

John stopped recording as he lost his concentration. Reforming his thoughts he attempted to continue, " Sorry, Aeryn. I'm not thinking too clearly now." He stopped the recorder again, the pain of his loss overwhelming him. Death was knocking on his door and there was so much he regretted, so much he had to say. He knew he would never be able to get all of what he wanted to say on the recorder. 'Keep it simple.'

"You've got to find Moya, Aeryn. She's lost and you're the only one left who can help her now. We owe her that."

John felt himself fighting for air at his last sentence. There was only one more thing he had to say to her.

He took a deep breath, trying to fill his lungs with air.

"Aeryn...fate isn't going to see it our way this time. Sorry I ever said that. Just want you to know, I understand, and I love you."

Every word he spoke was getting more and more difficult. He wasn't finished as he fought to get the last words out before he couldn't breathe anymore. His voice labored, sucking the last bit of breath in he said, " I love you beyond ...hope."

With those last words, he gave into the darkness that beckoned him.

xxxxx

She finally found release, flying her ship. The tension she felt on Moya finally leaving her. But she still carried him with her in her heart, in spite of herself.

'Why Crichton? Why did you have to try and stop me? Don't you realize the pain I've been in since I lost him?'

Aeryn remembered his last touch, so familiar. His words, "do you love John Crichton?" The tears were cascading down her face now.

"Will this never end?" She shouted as her heart ached for the man she loved. She was so confused. A part of her wanted to accept him, but she fought it.

She will never forget all the hurt she had inflicted on him. She could see it in his eyes every time she looked at him.

 'He had nothing but patience for me and I couldn't even acknowledge him. But he still loves me. How can anyone be so forgiving?'

All these thoughts came crashing in on her at one time. "Just stop it Aeryn. Do what you know you must! No emotions!"

But she had become more, as he told her so many cycles ago. She knew she could never ignore her emotions again. She was not a peacekeeper anymore. She had evolved into a whole person, thanks to John Crichton.

She sat back in her ship and relaxed, thinking over the dilemma, finally coming to terms with whom she really was.  'You never deserted me. You always stood by my side no matter what the condition. I at least owe you that much Crichton.'

She caught herself at the last word of her thought. 'Crichton.' She didn't even realize that she had never used his first name until that moment.

Aeryn realized in that instant how much she had torn this man down. How empty he had to feel.

She remembered the explanation of the twining. Both of them were the same, same thoughts, same DNA. The only thing that separated them now were their own unique experiences; and the fact one of them had died.

"What have I done to you?" Aeryn made her decision. This man truly cared for her as the other one had. How could she not have seen that, as she turned her ship around.

xxxxx

Aeryn rechecked her coordinates, confused by the lack of Moya's presence. 'Where did Moya go?'

She scanned her immediate area. The scanner picked up a single ship, just floating. Aeryn headed for the coordinates and saw the module floating dead in space.

There was no doubt it was John. 'What the frell happened?' She thought as she approached the module.

She opened the communication link between the ships, but received no response from the farscape module. "Frell John, answer me! John!"

She only heard silence on the other end, as panic was setting in. "No John you can't leave me! I won't let you!"

As she maneuvered closer to the pod she could see him, his helmet against the window. She felt her heart sink, realizing he was unconscious if not dead. The tears were starting to well up. "Frell. I've come back for you and you want to die on me. I really can't take that again John!"

She scrambled out of her seat to put on her suit. She was going to save him whether he wanted her to or not. He was not going to die this way!

Aeryn tethered the two ships together before she ventured into the open space. The hatch on the module was resistant at first. It seemed frozen, but Aeryn eventually got it open.

Entering the ship, she saw John's state, completely unconscious. Aeryn checked the oxygen levels on the console and saw they had been exhausted several microts ago. She knew she had little time to revive him.

Pulling John out of the pilot seat, she looked at the flight recorder and grabbed it. She knew he liked to talk and the recorder might fill in the gaps for her. Aeryn held onto him tightly as she transferred him to her ship.

She pulled his helmet off quickly checking for a pulse. Aeryn gasped when she couldn't find one. She quickly proceeded to massage his heart and breathe for him as he had once shown her, taking note of the deathly pallor that had washed over his skin.

Aeryn could get no reaction from him. Frustration set in as she started pounding on his chest vigorously. "You're not going to do this to me John! I came back and you are going to live!"

She leaned back on her knees and felt the tears well up. Aeryn didn't know what else to do. Perhaps she was too late.

 What a coward she was. She hadn't wanted another one to die in her arms, so she had let him die alone with no one to comfort him.

Aeryn had put herself first, never thinking for once what was best for this John. Death was painful enough, but to encounter it alone must have... She couldn't think about it anymore.

She looked down at the prone figure searching inside herself for strength. Aeryn would not be defeated, as she leaned over and tried breathing for him again.

"Please John," she whispered before her mouth met his. She breathed her air into his lungs hoping her second try would be successful. She had no idea how long he had been this way. She proceeded to massage his heart again, suddenly seeing a little color appear on his face.

The sound of him gasping for air and coughing were music to her ears as she silently thanked the gods she wasn't too late. She saw John struggle to his side as she helped him turn.

The shallow breaths he had been taking seemed to become deeper and more regular on his side. Aeryn hesitated to touch him, but finally let her emotions consume her as she cradled him in her arms, rocking him gently.

"Thank the gods your back, John. I thought I had lost you."

John was sure his mind was still playing tricks on him again, but his head and ribs hurt. All he wanted to do was sleep now. Logic was not part of his brain function.

Aeryn watched him pull away. He curled into a ball and fell into a deep sleep. She left him alone realizing whatever he had been through had been traumatic for him. He needed the sleep. She would just bide her time until he awakened. She had no way of knowing how this would affect him mentally and physically.

Making sure he was stable, Aeryn rose to her feet, reaching for the flight recorder. She clutched the device, settling herself into her seat.

Aeryn held the recorder with both hands against her chest, debating. Glancing back at John, she turned and stared ahead. Her finger slowly moved over the recorder. As she felt for the button, she hesitated for a microt. Taking a deep breath, she turned it on.

Contact Can

Epilogue for Twofold (Posted June 23, 2002) >>

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