Everything We Believe In (drabble 9)

The Ancient!John 'verse: Everything We Believe In (drabble 9 of ???)
Characters: Ancient!John Sheppard, Teyla Emmagen, Aiden Ford, Rodney McKay
Pairings: pre-John/Rodney
Summary: The Athosians worship the Ancestors.
Series: drabble #9 of ??? in the Ancient!John 'verse. Part of Locality.
Notes: Another fic I didn't intend to write. Be warned, it made me tear up while writing it.
Note Bene: And this makes 4. I know, I promised, but I was genuinely working on "Legati," then popkin16 said something that gave me the solution to a problem I've been having for a while, and, well, this happened. God.

Everything We Believe In

An Ancient!John Drabble

"There are some corners of the universe which have bred the most terrible things. Things that act against everything we believe in. They must be fought."

Doctor Who "Moonbase"

1 September, 2004 - Atlantis, Lantea, Pegasus

"Teyla," John says, sliding into the seat across from her in the room the Earth-folk have designated the mess hall and interrupting the conversation she's having with Doctor Weir about the settlement her people wish to set up on the mainland. "I need you to talk to Halling for me. The others too, but mostly Halling. He's the worst."

"What is it you wish for me to speak to them about?"

The Ancestor puts his elbows on the table and leans forward in a way that suggests he wishes them to do so as well, to better give this conversation an air of privacy in the otherwise crowded room. When neither she nor Doctor Weir do, he leans still further forward and all but whispers, "They keep praying." By the tone of his voice, this is, in his opinion, one of the worst crimes that could ever be committed.

"Praying," Elizabeth repeats. She, as much as Teyla herself, seems to be having trouble determining how serious this accusation truly is.

John seems to realize this and leans back just enough to wave a hand dismissively without loosing his balance. Even a month ago Teyla would have found such an idea – an Ancestor loosing his balance, or even putting his elbows upon the table for it – absurd, but she has learned much since arriving on Atlantis and meeting the Earth-folk. And, of course, the Ancestor they call John Sheppard.

"To me," he clarifies. "And the others. The ones who Ascended."


"So you see my problem."

"Major," Teyla tries as delicately as possibly, "you must understand. For many thousands of years, the teachings of the Ancestors have been central to the identity of my people. I may be their leader, but I cannot simply regulate what they choose to believe in."

"I know. And, normally, I'd agree with you. I could care less about what other people believe, so long as what they're doing is harmless. But this isn't harmless. It's..." he appears to search for the proper word, at last deciding upon an almost hissed, "subversive."


John suddenly pulls back and, rather than sit upright in the chair, seems to slump into it. "Just talk to them, please? I've tried explaining that my people weren't gods and I'm not either, but it's not worked, and I'm starting to get this impulse to knock them all in the head whenever I catch them at it. One that's getting harder to control each time."

"I will speak with them. Perhaps I will be able to convince them to be more... discreet... with their devotions."

John beams at her. "That's all I ask. So, ladies, what did I interrupt?"

    • Current Mood: full
    • Current Music: Florance and the Machines "No Light, No Light"
    Somehow, I'm imagining his face as having the same look then as if you walked in on a bunch of devil-worshipers in the act of sacrificing something--sheer, unmitigated horror. And I suspect that this is possibly the only thing that would just drive him absolutely nuts, considering how anathema he holds thing that smack of heresy. I wonder what Atlantis makes of it?
    Oh, Atlantis' take on it... I'd not even thought about that! (If this results in yet another drabble, it's *so* you're fault.)

    But, yeah, I see the whole being worshiped thing as driving him completely nuts. Early, disgarded drafts of this same idea invovled actual threatening with weapons. Needless to say, they did not survive.

    On a side note, I'm feeling the need for more icons again.
    Yay! I happily accept any and all blame for inspiring more Ancient!John fic.

    Hee, yeah, I can't quite see him threatening people over that; I think it's somehow a bit too...nutty? Something like that. He might want to, but he wouldn't. Because, as much as John likes to downplay it, he is a product of his society, and I imagine such an unmeasured response would have been severely frowned upon. Or something.
    Definately too nutty. Thus the nixing.

    But I'm trying so hard to finish "Legati" and all these thousand other things keep distracting me. Honestly, all today's fic can be blamed upon the death of my earbuds, which is saying something.
    I like how you handled this! This seems to be the middle ground you were searching for - John doesn't directly confront Halling, but neither is he completely laid back about it. God, how uncomfortable all the praying must have been to him :P

    At least the Earth-folk don't outright worship; rather, we put them on a pedastal and make star-eyes at them, but we don't regard them as Gods.
    I think all of it makes him majorly uncomfortable, which is part of the reason he tries to blend in so much - people only worship that which they can idolize. Or demonize.

    Though after the outright praying the Athosians did, I'm sure that just having to deal with star-eyes was a big relief.
    which is part of the reason he tries to blend in so much - people only worship that which they can idolize. Or demonize.

    Ooo, smart. I never thought of it like that.

    *nod* I'm sure he much prefers the star-eyes.
    which is part of the reason he tries to blend in so much - people only worship that which they can idolize. Or demonize.

    Ooo, smart. I never thought of it like that.

    I should also add to this that people only ever kill that which is different from them as well.