Title: When The Time Is Right
Spoilers: Just where Sam is post series
Summary: The right time finally arrives.
Disclaimer: Stargate, Stargate SG-1 and all of its characters, titles, names, and back-story are the property of MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, Gekko Productions, SciFi Channel, and Showtime/Viacom. All other characters, the story idea and the story itself are the sole property of the author. This story cannot be printed anywhere without the sole permission of the author. Realize this is for entertainment purposes only; no financial gain or profit has been gained from this fiction. This story is not meant to be an infringement on the rights of the above-mentioned establishments
She felt like she was leaving a lifetime behind her. The SGC had helped shape her, mold her into the person she was today. When she thought back to that young wide-eyed person, the loyal soldier, the idealistic scientist, she couldn't believe that person was her, still was a part of her.
So much had changed, and so much had remained the same. But changes were happening again, only now she held the wisdom and experience to let it happen.
Carefully, Sam packed the last few personal items she had lying around her lab. Most of her belongings had already been packed. She had made sure she kept of pictures of those dear to her. She had kept little trinkets that held special meaning over the years. She had arranged to have her house secure; Cam had promised to keep an eye on things for her. Everything was set.
Yet, she found herself sitting her on her stool, staring into the blinking lights of the lab. Something was holding her back, cementing her to the cold dark room.
She had refused to say goodbye. She had made Daniel, Teal'c, Cam, and Vala promise they would visit. She had secured everything through General O'Neill. She had tied as many loose ends as possible. She had tried to get past any regrets or doubts that she might harbor.
But it was the act of packing, of rearranging her life, which made her realize she would miss some things more than others.
And here she was waiting, hoping that the moment wouldn't pass her by.
Sam hung her head and sighed.
"So, are you going to leave without saying goodbye?"
Sam bobbed her head, catching Barrett standing in the doorway. He wore that same unapologetic expression, somewhere halfway between eager and open and calm and restrained.
She smiled at him. "I wasn't planning on saying goodbye." She pushed herself off the stool and closed her small suitcase. "I don't expect this assignment to last too long."
"You'll be in another galaxy," he reminded her.
Her grin broadened. "That's the beauty of Gate travel."
"You know," he began as he took a step into the lab, "anything of interest that you may find will have to be processed through the NID. I may just have to come for a visit or two." He cleared his throat. "Or whenever necessary."
Sam found herself smiling again. She could see a question forming on Barrett's lips, a question she knew she had heard many times before.
"And since you're leaving, I was wondering…"
He arched his eyebrows. "Yes?"
"It's going to take all afternoon to finalize the paperwork," Sam explained. "I haven't had any lunch."
He blinked a couple of times before a smile broke his serious face. "I know a place."
"Great." She stashed the suitcase on the floor and came to stand beside him. "I'm all yours."
She thought she saw him blush beneath his sandy freckles. Then he paused, and frowned slightly. "You know, out of all the times I asked you, the timing was never…"
"It is now." Sam grabbed his arm. In her youth, she had made mistakes. She had missed opportunities. Now, on the eve of her departure, she wasn't going to make the same mistakes again, not when the time was right to move on. "Let's make of the most of it."