Disclaimer - The characters belong to Donald P. Bellisaurio.  I make no 
claims as to owning them, I only borrowed them for a bit.  I'm making no 
money off this fic, it is purely for the fans.  All rights reserved.

Summary - My Heart's Desire is Post Mirror Image, it is my view of Sam's last 
leap and what he truely wants.  It can also be looked at as waht Al really 
wants too.  Sam leaps into a single mother with a young baby, and Donna is 
about to give birth at the project.  Can Al be there for Sam and Donna?  When 
Sam is thrown into a coma, can Al come to terms with his guilt?  Can Sam fix 
the mess he has created in order to finally leap home?  This is the first in 
what I hope to be a series of Al and Sam stories.

Warnings - Rated R.  Definately M/F sex involved, if this isn't for you or 
you are under 18, please turn back now.  Some bad words too.

Contact info - Comments are welcome, this is my first fic story, so I do need 
feedback.  Trekie386@aol.com

Prologue -

"Saaam!!"  Al yelled.  There was no response.  Al stood in the Imaging 
Chamber and watched the years swirl around him while Ziggy searched for a 
neural lock.  Tons of faces but none of them belonging to Sam.

"Saaam!!"  he tried again.  "Where are you, buddy?"

Al was starting to feel queasy.  This was worse than a merry-go-round, or a 
roller coaster.  "Ziggy?  I'm gonna hurl... Let me out!" 

The months continued to pass by Al's eyes.  He saw a woman's face, and it was 
gone just as quick.  Al could feel his stomach coil, trying to rid him of his 

"I'm not joking, Ziggy!  Gooshie!  Turn off the scan!!"  Al started to turn 
different shades of green.  The room continued to spin dizzily.  He saw 
trees, cars, the ground come up at his face.  A cat sailed right through him. 
 Al opened his mouth to scream when...

"NO!!!"  Al shouted and sat bolt upright in bed.  Sweat dripped down his 
forehead to land on the sheets.  He sat there a minute, the nightmare 
clinging to him.  He clenched and unclenched the sheet that lay across his 

His heart was pounding like a freight train, trying to break free of his 
chest.  Gasping he slowly raised one hand.  It was shaking.  He made a fist 
and lowered it slowly.

A voice next to him in the bed murmured.  "Al?" came the sleepy response.  
"You okay?"

A slender arm reached out from under the covers to turn on the bedside lamp.  
Al squinted at the brightness.  His heart was still hammering away.  Slowly, 
he tried to concentrate on breathing.  Deep, slow breaths.  It was just a 

The arm reached around to lay itself on his leg.  The other arm soon followed 
and Beth rolled over to examine Al.  "Honey? Was it the nightmare again?"  
She thought Al looked very pale.  She picked up a cloth on the bedside table 
and began to wipe his damp brow.

When Al regained some composure he nodded.  "It was horrible.  It never 
ends."  He took a deep breath.  Fragments of the dream still clung to his 
memory making him vaguely nauseated.  He looked at Beth.  "God, it was 

"Shhhh," she soothed, slowly stroking his back as one would comfort a child.  
"It's over now."

Al relished the warmth of her.  He let her comfort him.  Her touch helped 
chase the terrors away.  At times he still couldn't believe she was real.  He 
pulled her close and held her, remembering.

After Sam's last leap, Al had left the Imaging Chamber to find Beth waiting 
for him.  As he walked down the ramp, memories flooded him.  Memories of 
returning home, repatriated after being a POW for five years, to his wife.  
She hadn't given up on him.

Memories of their four daughters, now grown and either in college or on their 
own.  Tons of memories reasserting their place in his consciousness.  
However, he still remembered the other time line.  The one where she had 
given up hope on him and she had remarried.  There were no daughters in that 

Time travel and temporal physics gave him headaches.  Only three people had 
knowledge of the alternate time lines.  He was one of them.  The other two 
were Ziggy, (if you could call her a person) and Sam (when he could remember).

In this case, Al had gladly let the changed past integrate in his memories as 
he strode to hug Beth.  Al was finally happy.  Al broke free from the 
memories, and sighed deeply.  Somehow, Sam was responsible.  He had given Al 
the ultimate gift, his wife back.  Al was deeply grateful in ways he was only 
beginning to understand. 

After that Leap, however, they had lost contact with Sam completely.  It had 
been almost a year since the last contact with him.  No matter how hard they 
tried, they couldn't seem to get a lock.  Either Sam hadn't leaped yet, or if 
he did they couldn't find him.  No one was in the waiting room.

Al hugged Beth once more.  "I'm okay now.  Really."

She looked unconvinced.  "This is the third time this week alone."  She 
extracted herself from his embrace.  "I think you should talk to Verbena."

Al threw off the covers and stood.  He didn't need to see the resident 
head-shrinker.  He wasn't crazy.  "No."  He began to pace the bedroom.

Beth was familiar with this.  Ever since they had lost contact, Al had been 
spending most of his free time in the Imaging Chamber while Ziggy searched 
for Sam.  In between the visits from the Board nozzles, as Al called them, 
and the trips to Washington to please the Senators and Congress, he was not 
going to give up.

He would spend hours in the Chamber, sometimes he emerged shaken and pale.  
Mostly he just barely made it out and to the bathroom.  The motion sickness 
was starting to get severe.  He always went back in though.  Always.  About a 
month ago, the nightmares had started.  In some of them Al got a lock on Sam 
too late, just to watch his friend die.  In others, they never got a lock at 
all.  Either way the search was taking it's toll on Al.   He got very little 
restful sleep.

"Honey, please?"  She implored him with her brown eyes.

Al stopped his pacing and turned toward her.  He didn't like what he saw.  
DAMMIT!  She could always melt him with those eyes.  He wanted to erase the 
worry he found there.  "Okay, Okay.  You win."  He relented.  "I'll talk to 
her tomorrow."

She closed her eyes.  Al noticed how long and luscious her lashes were.  He 
had an impulse to just kiss them.  He sighed again and shook his head.

She opened them and watched Al.  "Come back to bed now."  With one hand she 
smoothed out the rumpled sheets.  "Come on.  It will be okay."  She patted it 

Al shook off the last of the nightmare.  Why?  A part of his mind questioned. 
 Why couldn't they just get a lock?  He pushed those thoughts away and 
climbed back into the bed and held Beth close. 

She reached over and turned out the light.  "Al.  We will find him.  You know 
we will."  She laid her head on his chest and listened to the beat of his 
heart. Al looked down at his wife of 39 years.  He kissed the top of her head 
gently.  "You bet be will.  I won't give up until we do.  He deserves that 

Al closed his eyes.  Slowly he drifted off to dreamless sleep