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beth writing 30 days without

FIC: "Arralun" (1/1) Written for LFWS - Round 5

Title: Arralun
Author: maddie_amber
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: Stargate belongs to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc., no infringements of any rights is intended.
Spoilers: None
Prompt for the Round: The story must take place during a holiday, from Earth or not. Only the team is allowed to appear.


Burning candles scented the room with the soft fragrance of tallow while guttering flames decorated the walls with flitting shadows. Teyla arranged the last of the sweets on a tray and set them on the low table she used for her meals. In the center were three, lightly carved gourds that also held smaller candles. Crisp, fresh kava fruit, polished to a brilliant red sheen, floated in a low bowl of water scented with cinnamon sticks she had begged from Teresa in the kitchen. John always said kava reminded him of apples, so they would have to do since apples were in short supply.

She heard John, Rodney and Ronon approaching from the other end of the corridor long before they reached her open door. Smiling, she imagined Rodney’s face as he loudly protested the interruption. He had been working, he complained. Ronon’s low voice responded in words she could not understand, but they were followed by a single yelp from McKay that ended in another mumbled protest.

“Behave, children,” John said just as he stopped at the entrance to her quarters. “Uh, knock, knock,” he added in lieu of ringing the door chime.

“Whoa!” Rodney grinned eagerly as he poked his head inside the door, taking in the soft light and array of treats on her table, his dismay at being torn from his work momentarily forgotten.

She gestured for them to enter and they filed in.

“Thank you for coming.”

“You said there was a ceremony you wished us to attend.” Ronon stated.

Teyla nodded. “A celebration really. A custom among my people. I have read about a similar tradition being practiced on Earth.”

“And that is,” Rodney asked as he reached for a sweet, only to have his hand smacked by John.

Teyla suppressed a grin. “On my world we call the day Arralun, on your world it is called All Hallows Eve.”

McKay sputtered. “Halloween? You called me away from my work for a children’s holiday.” His protest ended in a grunt as John elbowed him in the ribs.

“I don’t have fond memories of Halloween,” Rodney muttered.

“As it was originally observed,” John said eyeing McKay, “All Hallows Eve was a celebration of the dead.”

Teyla nodded at John. “On my world there is great respect for, and little fear of, the dead.” She picked up four slender tapers and lit them one by one. “Once a year, we give thanks for the harvest and honor family and friends who died. My people believe, that on this night, the souls of the dead are free to roam among the living, to visit those they have left behind.” She handed each of the men one slender glowing candle. “Your beliefs are similar. Normally I would spend the night with my fellow Athosians, my family. I thought, since we have all lost ones we love, that it would be appropriate to share this evening.”

There was a moment of silence before John spoke in a soft, awkward voice. “We’re your family now.”

“So what do we do?” asked Ronon with his usual forthright brusqueness.

“First, we each light a candle saying the name of one we have lost, to greet them and light their way to us.” She stepped closer to a row of unlit candles against the outer window. Beyond the night sky of Atlantis glowed with a rising moon that sparkled off the water.

Teyla held the taper to an unlit wick. “Charin” she said softly.

John hesitated before he stepped to the window. “Elizabeth.”

Ronon nudged Rodney moving him forward. “Carson,” Rodney added in a hushed voice as his candle flared.

A fourth wick glowed. “Sateda.”