Disclaimer: I do not own Stargate Atlantis and no infringement was intended, just having some fun with the characters.

Spoiler Alert: Spoilers for The Last Man

Summary: David Sheppard's perspective of some of the events in the Last Man.

A/N: This is tied to the episode The Last Man. Yet, it also follows some of the events I put in my story Brought to the Brink, but I don't think you really need to read that to understand this one…

The Last Man: Disappeared

By Godsdaughter77

David was sitting on in a chair staring at the sofa opposite him where John had sat months ago when they talked after their dad died. Though, not much had been accomplished in that conversation, it had paved the way to the reconciliation that had been accomplished when David went to Atlantis a month or so ago when John had been severely injury.

Yet, now David could not take his eyes from the spot John had sat. On Atlantis, he had discovered how dangerous John's job was, and how close he had come to losing John several times in the past, so David had talked with Rodney. David had Rodney promise to contact him if anything happened to John. Last week, he got the email.

It had been just as rambling as Rodney was in real life, but David had got the message. John was missing. They had absolutely no idea how, why, or where. John had gone through the gate, but he never arrived on the other side.

Rodney promised David they were doing all they could to find him, and David believed him. He only hoped it would be enough to save John.

Suddenly, David was shaken from his thoughts as he felt a hand on his shoulder. He looked up and saw Sydney, his fiancée.

"David, John's going to be alright. I'm sure of it."

David nodded, but didn't share her confidence. Sydney didn't know how dangerous John's job was. She thought it was some classified base on earth that John was stationed at. She didn't know about the Pegasus galaxy and life sucking aliens. Also, Sydney hadn't grown up with John. She had no idea how much trouble John attracted to himself.

This reminded him eerily of a time before when he had been stuck waiting for news on John with nothing he could do to help and practically no news. John had been sixteen and had disappeared.

They had at first thought that John had run away as their dad and John had gotten in another argument the night before, but two days later they discovered that was not the case. Though the police that their dad had called in to find John had not found him, they finally had discovered a clue to what had happened to John.

John had been driving home from football practice when he had noticed a girl having some problems with her boyfriend. John being…well John… had pulled over and asked if she wanted any help. Though the rest of the details were a little blurry as the witness the police had gotten the information from had decided he didn't want to get involved in what happened next and had begun to leave.

Still, the police were able to determine that John had gotten the girl to get out of there, while he kept her boyfriend occupied. Sadly, soon after, some of the boyfriend's friends showed up as well and John lost the fight he had been winning. John was captured, but the girl had escaped.

The police reluctantly explained at their dad's pushing that from the evidence they found the chances of John being alive when they found him were slim.

David clearly remembered the horror that had passed over their father's face at the news though it quickly had been hidden behind a passionless mask their dad often used to hide his feelings. A mask David realized both him and John now often used.

The next few days for David and their dad had been miserable as hope for finding John alive slipped through their fingers. In fact, David remembered sitting just as he was currently in this same house wondering if John was alive or dead.

David shook himself from these thoughts as Sydney drew him to the table were she had set out some food for him to eat.

He smiled gratefully though food wasn't really that appealing to him. He realized once again how luck he was to have Sydney. Ever since she met John, Sydney had embraced him as part of her family. It reminded David of their mom, who had kept all three Sheppard boys close together. He sighed remembering the animosity that had occurred between John and their dad after her death, though thankfully David and John's relationship had been repaired.

David smiled as he remembered how well John and Sydney had gotten along when John had come to earth on leave while healing from wounds he had received from Bric'ien. They had conspired against him to make sure he didn't do any work, and David had to admit he was glad they did.

Now, he watched Sydney grieve with him over John's disappearance. From the moment, he had told her that John was missing in action, she had done everything she could to help him; from cooking food to picking up papers from the office.

Trying to show her his appreciation for all she had been doing for him lately, David asked her, "how was your day?"

"It was okay. Work went pretty well, but I kept thinking about you and John all day."

"I know what you mean. Every time I try to take a look at the files from the office, I find I can't concentrate on them," sighed David.

The talk soon tapered off as neither one of them seemed to be able to think of anything new to say, though they did keep trying. Finally, after eating a small amount of the food, Sydney had piled onto his plate, David and Sydney sat on the couch together.

As Sydney laid her head on his chest and curled up beside him, she hesitantly said, "David, you mentioned to me earlier that John had disappeared before when you were both younger, but you never told me how it ended."

"Well…the police told us there was not much hope that we would find John alive. The only other time I saw Dad that distraught was when mother died. I know he was feeling guilt from the last words John and him had spoken to each other. It had been a stupid argument…most of their arguments at that time were pretty stupid, but they were both so stubborn they would never step down.

"I remember coming in to dad's office a day after the police had told us that John's chances were slim. He had been working nonstop on anything he could to find John, but right then he was just sitting at his desk holding a picture of John and me from a football game the previous year crying. My dad never cried…but both of us were losing hope on finding John alive and I think it just had become too much for him. At that moment, I really didn't think my dad would be able to handle it if we never found John alive."

David was quiet for a moment as he thought back to that dark time in his past. Clearing his throat he continued, "Thankfully, soon after the police found a lead. Apparently, John had messed with one of the top members of a local gang. He would manage something like that wouldn't he…anyhow, they decided to 'teach him a lesson' about messing with other people's lives. They beat him up pretty well and then tied him up in a cold basement for the entire time he was missing. They gave him a little bit of water every day, but no food."

David was silent as he thought about seeing John in the hospital after he had been rescued. John had been weak, covered in bruises, and had caught a nasty cold, but in David's opinion, considering the fact he was alive, he had never looked better.

"How was he found?" questioned Sydney gently.

"The girl who John had helped found out that they had kidnapped John, and decided that she needed to go to the police with the information. She did and the police were able to not only rescue John, but also put a stop to some pretty bad gang activity that had been occurring in the area."

David paused again thinking back to how his dad had looked when the phone call came from the police that John was found. "John had been gone for five days by that time, and when Dad got the call from the police, I don't think he registered it right away. I remember he placed the phone back on the hook and then he turned to me in shock saying 'John's alive. They found him.' My dad was so out of it, I was the one who drove us to the hospital to see John. The doctors wanted John to stay a few days to help make sure he would be okay, because he had caught a cold along with all the other abuse his body had taken. Yet, even though John was so weak, he put up a hell of a fight to get out of there sooner…" David smiled and then continued, "He lost of course, but I think that was exactly what both Dad and I needed to know he was going to be alright.

"Those next couple of weeks were some of the nicest I can remember since our Mom had died. The doctor had wanted John to take it easy, and in an attempt to ensure that John did just that, Dad took a lot of extra time off of work to spend with us. We all were getting along then too. Dad and John had apologized to each other for the argument soon after John was rescued and it was nice to not be in the middle of any of their arguments for a bit."

"I bet" replied Sydney with a small smile.

"You know, John didn't regret in the slightest stepping in to rescue that girl. Even then he was always looking out for others at the expense of himself."

They sat in silence for a moment and David took hope in the idea that John had survived last time, so he could be found this time as well.

Suddenly, his ever present laptop chimed that he had received a new email. David swallowed wondering if this was the message that would tell him John was dead. 'No don't think like that' he told himself.

He clicked on it as he saw that it was from geniusnumberone aka Rodney. The message was short, but suddenly David felt his body sag in relief.

John is back and he is going to be fine. I'll give you more details later, but I don't have the time right now…

"Sydney, he's okay. He's back on base!"

"Oh, David! I'm so glad!" Sydney said as she wrapped her arms around him and drew him into a kiss.

Yes, John was okay for the moment, but lucky for David he had no idea what John would be facing before another day had passed…


The End

A/N: Please review and let me know what you think! I have been having some bad days lately and really need the encouragement and smiles reviews bring…yes, I am begging once again…