Perhaps a little grim for April Fool's, but here goes.
There are a few other stories I'd count among the most moving Stargate deathfics I've read, but in those (or their sequels), either the person comes back, or the major character death seemed like a much smaller part of the story. In these five stories (warning!) there are no miraculous returns, and the dying or the surviving of another's death (rather than the part of life before the dying started) is a main plot point.
Title: Freedom's Just Another Word for Nothing Left to Lose
Creator's Name: synecdochic
Main Pairing: John/Rodney
Links (edited to add and consolidate): Story link above, there is a gorgeous accompanying vid by Lim (scroll down to "This Is How It Works"), and if you want more after reading the story, it has an official sequel and an unofficial prequel.
Why I chose this: A stunning piece about living on after great loss. From the ashes of Atlantis, make clay, and build a house back on Earth.
(This is also one of the essential-reading and most moving stories in the entire fandom. If you haven't been reading SGA fic that long you should absolutely read this, but to fully appreciate it, not too early -- I strongly second others' opinions on that.)
She looks up suddenly, fingers stilling, blue eyes soft and sympathetic. "I'm sorry," she says. The words are automatic. "How long were you together?"
Two thousand and forty-seven days; a lifetime, a heartbeat. "Five and a half years."
"I'm sorry," she repeats. "Was -- did she linger?"
This is why he hates personal conversations. "No," he says. "He died quickly."
Title: Breathe You Deep
Creator's Name: hth
Main Pairings: Rodney/Ronon, John/Teyla UST
Link: Story can be read here, notes and warnings here. (Hth's stories are starting to appear on the AO3, this one isn't there just yet.)
Why I chose this: Although there isn't that much of it overtly, the Ronon/Rodney rings very true in this story (and in its non-sad prequel). And then there is emotional idiocy and suffering and forgiveness and inability to forgive and Rodney unable to cope and John and Teyla losing what they might have had, and, oh, it hurts so good.
"There was an expression on Sateda -- the sunless summer. That's what we called an affair that ended early... because someone died or got culled. Like us. Before there was time for the good stuff."
Title: A Hundred Words for Snow
Creator's Name: icantfollow
Main Pairing: John/Rodney, background Rodney/OFC
Why I chose this: Short but packs a punch. Sometimes you can't say goodbye.
"You know, it gets harder to remember why we left," said Rodney when they were sitting on a green fleece blanket, necks craned at odd angles. Even though they both knew it was too far away, they liked to pretend they could see the planets they'd visited.
John said nothing. He would never forget, even if sometimes he let himself get distracted.
Title: The Qualities of Silk
Creator's Name: aesc
Main Pairing: John/Rodney
Why I chose this: Rodney makes great sacrifices to save the people and city he loves. Long, intricately structured, and satisfying.
"Fly the damn jumper, Colonel," Rodney said from the control panel's guts. Wrapped up in the jumper, threaded through with navigation, the hyperspace adapters, life support, he felt the elusive pressure of John's flight, his hands on the controls refracting back through Rodney's hands on the control crystals, like being the jumper, the shaking, frightened thing -- no, not the jumper, John, himself, he didn't know -- but John was a brightness, sharp, a fixed point.
"It's like being in a goddamn tin can," John muttered. His voice was odd and human, thick with breath and blood in Rodney's ears, next to the chill of circuitry.
Creator's Name: Mary Jane
Main Pairing: Jack/Daniel
Why I chose this: It's only after that Daniel learns exactly how much he meant to Jack.
That night, in dreams, Jack has his arm around Daniel's shoulder.
"Leaving so soon?" he says.
"Yeah," Daniel says. In the dream, he turns in to meet Jack's touch, Jack's eyes. "I have to, don't I? Or else I won't be able to leave at all."
"I know," says Jack.
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