Authors Note: This is my idea of a lost scene in the Stargate: Atlantis fourth season final episode The Last Man.
Lieutenant Colonel John Sheppard was nervous as he stepped into the stasis chamber, ready for a seven hundred year sleep to the time when according to the Rodney hologram he would be able to go back to his own time.
"If this works I'll be right here when you come out," Rodney said.
"Okay," Sheppard answered bracing himself for stasis and wondering what it would feel like to be frozen this way.
"Good luck, John," Rodney replied with a smile on his old holographic features. Then he must have invisibly done something through his connection to Atlantis' systems as from behind John came a humming sound.
Around him the walls of the cabinet like stasis chamber glowed slightly and a wave of intense cold passed over him. His eyes closed and for a few timeless moments there was nothing at all, no sensation, no movement of his chest nothing. Then the wave of cold passed back the other way and he stumbled against the wall with a gasp as breath he had been holding rushed out of his lungs.
Opening his eyes John immediately noticed that something was different about the room beyond the stasis chamber. Most of the lights were off, but there was enough light to see a thin veneer of ice over the exposed surfaces. Stumbling out of the pod he shivered and looked around. Now where the hell is Rodney, he thought.
As if in answer to his thought the hologram appeared in front of him. And it was immediately obvious that the system sustaining him hadn't weathered the last seven hundred years well at all. Rodney was almost transparent and periodically flickered with static distortions.
"It worked," Rodney said his voice sounding odd and faint.
"Are you okay," John asked.
"My systems are breaking down," Rodney answered. "My holographic matrix is compromised. We have to hurry the shield is only barely holding against the radiation of the star, and we have another problem."
"Sensors indicate that the star is beginning to collapse, its going to go supernova. When it does this planet and Atlantis will be destroyed."
"And you as well," John pointed out.
"I died along time ago, John," Rodney reminded him. "But if this works then you will soon see my younger self again. I've rerouted power to the transporters and Stargate operations systems but we do not have long."
"Right," John said. "Why is it so cold in here?"
"Systems are failing all over the city. Life support is barely functioning now, but it wont need to for much longer. Now come on young man," Rodney replied and started walking away.
John scowled but followed, shivering slightly in the bone chilling cold that filled this ghostly, future Atlantis. This was worse than Antarctica - at least their there was the possibility of relief in a nice warm helicopter. Here there was little if any warmth at all, and he didn't need Rodney to tell him that the end had finally come for Atlantis. Soon the cities millions of years of existence would end snuffed out in the final flurry of a dying star.
It didn't take long to reach the transporter station. Stepping into the compartment John scowled at the layer of ice and dust that coated everything, amazing though the destination screen was still glowing, though only the transporter for the central tower remained functioning.
John was just about to press the button when there came adull rumbling sound and the city began to vibrate fiercely as if in the grip of an earthquake. Warning alarms went off filling the still air of the city with sound for the first time in centuries. Finally the noise and vibration stopped but the alarms remained sounding an urgent warning.
"Rodney what was that," he asked the spluttering hologram.
"Gravity shift," Rodney answered. "The star is beginning to collapse; I estimate we only have minutes before it collapses then explode into a supernova."
"Then we better move," John replied.
"I'll meet you in the control room," Rodney answered and vanished a second before John pressed the transporter control and the doors closed. There was the familiar flash of light as the transport took place then the doors opened again, just as the rumbling and vibration began again.
"We must hurry," Rodney said appearing in front of him. Sheppard nodded and started running for the control room, ignoring to the best of his abilities the cities shaking which was getting worse by the second.
It took all of a minute to reach the control room. But in that time the situation had dramatically worsened. Atlantis was shaking violently now and the rumble had become a roaring demon, interspersed with the distant sound of concussive explosions in other parts of the city. To John it sounded as though Atlantis was screaming and writhing in the throes of apainful death.
"You must dial the planet you were last on," Rodney told him shouting to be heard over the noise. "The wormhole will return you there acouple of days after you left, it's the best I could calculate it I'm sorry."
"Don't be, you've been incredible Rodney," John replied as he operated the DHD, dialling the coordinates for the planet he had left Lorne and his team on what to him was only a few hours ago. "Thanks to you I've got a chance to fix what went wrong."
"Thank you," Rodney answered before washing with even more static distortions, as the Stargate burst into life. A smile appeared on his old features. "Go, hurry," he said as sparks began shooting out of consoles and access panels all over the control room.
John Sheppard nodded and ran down the steps, across the floor of the operations centre and through the gate. Within a second the gate shut down and the wormhole evaporated leaving the Rodney hologram alone.
"Good luck, John," Rodney said before he washed with static one final time then vanished from existence.
Moments later the dying sun contracted into a small sphere, before bursting outwards again in a stellar cataclysm, waves of radiation and energy smashed into the planet where Atlantis was located, instantly erasing the last city of Alterans from existence as the whole crust burned away. Then the bigger blast wave impacted the planet and it shattered like brittle glass, hurtling debris throughout space.
John Sheppard yelped as he was thrown out of the Stargate by a tremendous blast of force, he flew helplessly through the air like a real life Superman. Before crashing down in the soft damp earth.
Groaning he sat up and looked around, everything looked almost like it had when he had left Lorne, everything except the sky which was clouded over with storm clouds. Did it work, he thought standing up and heading towards the DHD. Only one way to find out, he thought as he began punching in the coordinates for Atlantis, quietly praying that the old, sad Rodney who'd programmed the hologram hadn't made a mistake in his calculations.
The wormhole engaged and John felt a smile come to his face. Calmly he typed his access code into the GDO on his wrist and started walking towards the gate. Just shy of the event horizon he paused and took the crystal Rodney had given him from his pocket. It seemed like such a tiny, insignificant thing no different to the millions of crystals that there were in Atlantis. It was hard to believe it contained such vital intelligence, intelligence that would save Teyla and the whole of the Pegasus Galaxy from Michael and his army of Wraith/Human hybrids.
"We'll save her, Rodney," he said softly to the crystal wishing the hologram could hear him and know that he had succeeded in his programming. "And we'll stop, Michael."
Returning the crystal to his pocket he took a deep breath before stepping into the event horizon of the wormhole, beginning his journey home to Atlantis.
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