Laura had never really been an actual believer of the Gods until she took upon herself the role of the dying leader; before that she just lived with it and respected it, and you wouldn't catch her in a temple unless it was strictly necessary, but with her cancer, visions and the book of Pythia she accepted it all as real and her newly adquired role. Somehow, this helped her to accept her mortality in a new way, thinking now of death not as the end but as a new beginning; a new life, one she knew she wouldn't share with those on Earth, and yet she believed something else waited for her in the afterlife. What, exactly, she wasn't sure but she knew there was something.
She often wondered what actually home was and she found it in the most unexpected place: William Adama. He had become her ally, friend, confidant, lover as well as both her strengh and weakness. Laura had never shared with Bill that in a way she actually owed him her life, as had she not attended the decommission ceremony of Galactica, had she not spent so much time arguing with him, she would've died with over 99% of humanity in the Colonies. There was no going back, now that she had succumbed to cancer but at least she had spent her last moments with him, said her last words to him and died not only happy but fulfilled as she took her last breath and closed her eyes.
Next time she opened them, she found herself in a ship crossing a river to approach a shore, each second getting closer and everything becoming clearer. Feeling the soft breeze on her features; her long, sliky, auburn hair almost as if was being carried in the wind making her feel alive again.
Laura did then a double take, as her hair, her real hair, was back. Reaching with her left hand to her hair, she then run her fingers through her locks and she couldn't help the smile that graced her face. Soon she was shocked, as she brought up one of her locks to the level of her eyes to examine it further but her attention was then on the gold band on her ring finger. She quickly recognize who did it belong to, she knew every dent and tiny scratch on it; it was Bill's ring, strangely fitting her perfectly, now hers and making her then his wife. Perhaps not the most traditional wedding, she deduced, as he probably placed the ring on her finger as soon as she died.
She was so lost and enthralled with the ring that she almost missed that the ship stopped as it finally reached its destination. Looking around, she found the way out to descend and made her way to greet the people waiting there for her. The first to welcome her were her parents and sisters, it seemed a lifetime or two ago when she lost them, and she missed them all especially both her sisters Sandra and Cheryl. She was talking with them when someone she clearly had not expected to see there had the nerve to interrupt them.
As she turned around she gave a cold stare to the man standing just three feet away from her, and her voice carried the same coldness.
"Richard. Can't say I was expecting you as part of the welcome party."
"Still mad at me for asking you to resign, Laura?"
Rolling her eyes, she had just enough time to tilt her head to left to avoid his kiss even if he felt his lips in contact with her cheek. As he pulled back he was puzzled.
She was about to raise her left hand to show him but she didn't have the chance as someone else had approached from behind him and spoke.
"Yeah, the Old Man won't like it when if try to go to far with Madame Prez." Kara said, still walking and then stood next to Laura.
"Who the frak is the Old Man?" Richard asked. "And Madame Prez? You're the President?"
"The Old Man, as here Kara and the rest of the Galactica crew call him, is Admiral William Adama who is also my husband." She then glanced at Kara for a moment and continued. "And yes, I am the President. Well, was, twice actually. Now, whether you excuse me or not, I have others to catch up with. Goodbye, Richard."
Grabbing Kara's hand, she pulled her away with her as she also said goodbye to her family after promising to catch up more with them later. They didn't walk very far as soon Laura spotted Dee and Billy waiting for her. Releasing the Captain's hand, she first hugged Billy. He had died too soon, too young and even to the day of her death she missed him as he had been not only her best aide but also like a son to her. Just like, in a way, so had Kara been her daughter no matter all the fights and even facing each other with guns, and eventually so had Dee, even if the fact was unknown for the three of them. Laura then hugged Dee, and finally did the same with Kara just as it clicked in her mind that the blonde had been dead for sometime but she still felt as real as she did back when they both were alive.
"Gotta ask, did you and the Admiral finally get married or did you just tell that prick to leave you alone?" Kara asked, as Laura finally released her from their embrace.
"I did, sort of." Laura then lifted her left hand for them to see the ring on her finger. "Not the traditional way, at least."
"Not the traditional way? How is that, ma'am?" Dee asked.
"Well, let's say I wasn't really alive when he placed the ring on my finger."
"Probably 'cause he thought if he did it alive, you'd toss him out of the nearest airlock." Kara said, grinning.
"You really have some nerve, Kara." Laura said glaring at her. "But you're also probably right. Maybe one day we can have a real wedding and I expect the three of you there."
"Really?" Billy then said.
"Billy, when have you known me to say something I don't mean?"
He nodded and looked down. "Sorry, Madame President."
"Oh no, no titles. It's just Laura now."
"Or Mrs. Adama." Kara whispered, earning her a punch in her shoulder from Dee, even if a playful one.
"Girls, don't fight. I'll accept being called Mrs. Adama when the groom joins us and we actually get it done. But there's plenty of time to plan that." She smiled. "And I do want the three of you there as in a way..." She stopped for a moment, almost as if to gain the courage to admit to them how she had come to see them over the time she spent with them. "In a way, you've become part of my family like... Well, my children."
"Ma'am... Laura, I can understand why you feel that way with Billy or even Kara but not me." Dee said.
"Understandable. You were one of the few aboard Galactica that didn't mind my presence since I first arrived, always tried to help me or Billy, and did all in your power so that everything ran smoothly. Overtime I got to know you better, and then there's the fact that you married Lee. So, technically, you're more my daughter than, say, Kara."
"Hey, now, just because she married an Adama doesn't mean she has more privilige to be your kid." Kara said, mocking to be hurt.
"Don't worry, you'll always be my favorite crazy child and best viper pilot."
As the words left her lips, Laura laughed at Kara's shocked face and shortly the four of them were laughing together. Talking for a few more minutes, Dee and Billy then bid them goodbye as they had something to do; Laura didn't question them as she actually wanted to have a good talk with Kara and now that they were alone she had the chance.
They chatted as they walk around what seemed to be a garden, probably the most beautiful Laura had seen in either of her lifes, if what was going on now was another life. As they approached a rounded fountain with a sculpture of Athena on its center, she stopped both talking and walking.
"Laura?" Kara asked as she looked back to her companion.
"Please, tell me I am not having more visions and that Baltar and Caprica are actually waiting by the fountain looking at us."
Kara then turned around and there she found the bleach blonde in a red dress and the weasel they once had as President in a black stripped suit. She smirked as she looked back at Laura.
"Seems I'm not the only one who gets the special welcome comitee."
"What are you talking about?" Laura asked, as the blonde pulled her with her to keep walking toward the fountain.
"That it's them but it's not them. They're still alive on Earth but..."
"But what, Kara?"
"Ah, I see you're already filling her in." Gaius said as Laura and Kara finally arrived.
"Not really." Laura said.
"We're messengers." Six said. "Angels of God, or Gods, or what you may believe in. After death, sometimes, we are given the chance to come back to the world we once belonged to and help others; we guide them to find their path in life. After that, we help others in the universe who may seek guidance, all through time and space."
"I became one after I crashed on the first Earth, to help you and the fleet find a new home. After I was done, I disappeared and came back here." Kara explained.
"You left Lee alone in that hill?" Laura asked.
"Yeah, I think he's used to me doing that now."
Returning her attention to the tall blonde, Laura spoke again. "Why are you telling me this?"
"Really, why did He choose her? She's supposed to be brighter and smarter." Gaius head with a disapproving look.
"Quiet, Gaius." Six said looking at him and then back at Laura. "Like Kara, you're given the choice to become one of us. Just like we did long ago. You can return to Earth, not to guide or help others this time; it has been offered to you for your sacrifices to lead your people to a new home, for you deserve happiness with those you love."
The redhead was quiet for a moment, as if pondering already her decission."Bill. He's really the only one I left behind."
"Think about it, Laura. But be quick, as time passes slower here than on Earth." Six said and glanced at Kara, as the pilot believed she had been gone for five minutes and she had been gone for much longer.
"And how do I let you know when I've made my decision?"
"Just return here, I'll be waiting." Six said and smiled softly just before she disappeared with Gaius.
"They tend to do that too, or come out of nowhere. You'll get used to that."
With a heavy sigh, Laura nodded and looked around her trying to find a place to sit and on the near distance she saw a few benches. Looking back at the blonde pilot, she motioned at her to follow her and then started to walk to a bench, half shadowed by a large tree, as the least she needed now was to get burn. As she walked, she realized that she had now come to trust Kara 'Starbuck' Thrace to help her figure out what choice in her new life would be the best for her.