Title: Allies and Enemies
Category: action/adventure, drama, romance
Season/Sequel: Season 7, after Evolution parts 1 & 2
Summary: When an off-world mission goes wrong for SG-1 and one of their members learns something important about the Goa’uld, the fate of the universe is in their hands and they are forced to make allies with unlikely prospects.
Disclaimer: I don’t own any of this, nothing is mine. All is used for entertainment purposes only.
Dr. Daniel Jackson came barreling out of the Stargate at top speed, carrying something in his arms. Not even stopping to acknowledge General Hammond or hand over his weapons, he raced out of the Gateroom with the large, unwieldy bundle in his arms cradled closely against his chest.
General Hammond only got one quick look at Dr. Jackson before he disappeared through the door, but one quick look was all he needed. The bundle in Daniel Jackson's arms was Major Samantha Carter. And she wasn't moving.
General Hammond turned back to the Stargate and watched as Colonel Jack O'Neill and Teal'c came through at a much more sedate pace. They came down the ramp as the Stargate shut off behind them. Stopping at the bottom of the ramp, they handed over their weapons as the general
"Colonel, what happened over there? Your last communication said that things were going well."
O'Neill removed his well-worn, olive baseball cap, bent his head down and rubbed the back of his neck. He shook his head from side to side, and then looked up at the general. "I don't know, Sir. Everything was going great. Then Carter...Daniel found her...I don't know what
"Major Carter disappeared sometime in the night. DanielJackson found her in the morning," Teal'c informed the general in his annoyingly calm manner.
"Where was she?"
"She was on a narrow ledge approximately 35 feet down the side of a cliff. She was unconscious. She awoke as we were rescuing her and hasn't spoken since," Teal'c finished.
Hammond's eyes widened in shock, then he took a deep, calming breath. "We'll debrief in a couple of hours. After you two have been checked out by Dr. Frasier. Now go to the Infirmary."
Without another word O'Neill and Teal'c followed in Daniel's wake to the Infirmary, going more to find out how Carter was doing than for their own well-being.
As soon as he reached the Infirmary, Daniel called out for help for Sam. That was all that mattered to him. Help for Sam. The Infirmary came alive with doctors, nurses, and technicians running around, preparing every possible piece of equipment that could help Sam. Dr. Frasier
directed Daniel over to a bed for Sam. He lowered her onto the bed, but she refused to let go, tightening her arms around Daniel's neck, burying her face against his chest. She made some sound against him, something that sounded like "No".
"Sam," Daniel said gently, "You need to let go so I can put you here and Janet can make you better."
"Don't let go," Sam whispered, face still pressed against Daniel. "Please."
Her voice was so full of pain and fear that Daniel tightened his arms around her back, pulling her closer to him as he stood over the bed. He began to rub her back with one hand in slow gentle circles, while the other brushed through her short blonde hair. The entire medical staff stopped what they were doing and looked at the two of them.
"Sam, listen to me," Daniel softly said into her ear. "I'm not going anywhere. I'll even hold your hand through it all. But you need to let go and lay down so Janet can examine you. I need Janet to tell me you're going to be okay." His voice choked and a few tears escaped his
bright blue eyes. "I'm scared that something is really wrong with you, Sam. That you're seriously hurt. I need Janet to tell me you're okay."
Sam pulled back from Daniel slightly and looked at him. Her face was streaked with tears, his shirt wet where they had fallen. "You promise you won't leave?" she asked in a small voice.
Daniel, still with one arm on her back and the other on the back of her head, nodded. "I promise."
Reassured, Sam lay back on the bed and grabbed hold of one of Daniel's hands with her left, giving it a tight squeeze. Daniel squeezed back, just as tightly. Janet slowly walked over and began her examination of Sam, starting with taking her pulse and listening to her lungs and
heart. As she probed Sam's abdomen, Sam winced and then cried out in pain.
At just that moment, O'Neill and Teal'c rounded the corner and raced into the Infirmary. "Carter?" O'Neill questioned, making his way over to her bed.
Daniel, who was bent over the bed, immediately stood up and stepped between Jack and Sam. "Get out," he said quietly. Dangerously. "You don't have a right to be here."
Shock and pain showed themselves in Jack O'Neill's expression. He just stared at Daniel for a moment. At a very, very angry Daniel. Then he turned on his heel and marched out of the Infirmary without a backward glance. As soon as he was gone Daniel returned to Sam's side, brushing her hair off her forehead. Teal'c remained in the Infirmary, but stood out of the way, a huge, silent statue that just by his presence gave Sam and Daniel support.
Janet had Sam's shirt pulled up part of the way and was examining her bruises and gently probing her ribs, eliciting some painful moans from Sam, confirming both Daniel and Janet's suspicions. Sam had a few broken rigs, and those bruises, most likely from a beating in addition to the fall, may have resulted in some internal injuries.
"Sam, I need to x-ray you and do an ultrasound to check for injuries. Daniel can stay with you through the ultrasound, but I'm afraid he can't come with us to the x-ray room..." Janet broke off when she saw the look Sam was giving Daniel. It was one of fear, abject fear.
"I'm not leaving you, Sam. Janet will just have to give me a lead vest so I can be in the room with you," he reassured Sam, his bright blue eyes locking with her darker blue ones. Janet nodded her assent and led the way to x-ray, two techs pushing Sam on the bed behind her, while
Sam still held on to Daniel, who was walking beside the bed.
Three hours later, Sam fast asleep, Janet having slipped her a sedative after the long examination, and Daniel was sitting in the briefing room with Dr. Frasier, General Hammond, Teal'c, and Colonel O'Neill. Well, they were all sitting except for O'Neill. He was standing in a dark corner, away from them all.
"And then I climbed down there to get her," Daniel was saying. "She woke up as I touched her arm, checking for her pulse. She said she hurt. She said she was pushed off the cliff and not much else. She was drifting in and out of consciousness as we rigged something up to lift her
out of there. As soon as we were up off the ledge, I picked her up and raced for the Stargate. Teal'c and ...O'Neill...were right behind me. The rest you saw." Daniel sat back in the soft leather chair as Dr. Frasier took over.
"Sam has a pretty serious concussion, probably from hitting her head in the fall. She also has some pretty bad bruises from being hit with something; my guess based on the appearance of these bruises that it was with a wooden club of some sort. She also sustained three fractured
ribs and a fractured wrist. Whether they were from the assault of the fall I'm uncertain. Thankfully she has no internal injuries, or any other more serious injuries. There are also some foreign substances in her blood, most likely a sedative, to keep her quiet while they abducted her. Sam'll be up and around in a few days, but I can only clear her for light base duty. It'll be a few weeks, at least, until she will be well enough to go through the Stargate again."
"Thank you, Doctor." Hammond then looked at the three male members of SG-1 in the briefing room in turn, looking for any sign as to what happened. He received nothing in reply. "Would anyone like to tell me what the hell happened to Major Carter? You said everything was going
well, that the Krimm were friendly and helpful."
O'Neill spoke first, still ensconced in his dark corner. "It was. Like I said, I don't know what happened, Sir. We were there for four days with no problems whatsoever. Then last night we were guests of honor at the feast. Carter said she was tired and went to bed early. In the
morning she was missing. No on knew what had happened. Everyone was so nice and peaceful there."
Daniel's gaze swung toward O'Neill. "You should have listened to her, Jack," he said quietly.
"Doctor Jackson?" General Hammond queried.
"You should have listened to her." He stood up from his comfortable chair, shaking his finger emphatically at Jack. "She said something didn't feel right about that place. She was scared of the people, of the way they looked at her and acted around her. She told you that. More
than once! And you ignored her!" Daniel's voice continued to rise, until he was shouting. "She said she needed to talk to you, that she'd found something out about the Krimm! If you'd only listened to her, instead of fooling around with their weapons! But no! You thought the
Krimm were perfect! You should have listened! Then maybe this wouldn't have happened! It is all your fault! You never listen to anyone but yourself anymore! Just because you're the leader doesn't mean you always know best!" By the time Daniel had finished his tirade he was shaking, tears streaming down his face. He turned to General Hammond. "Can I go sit with Sam now, Sir? I don't' want her to wake up alone."
The general nodded. "Go ahead, son." As soon as Daniel had left, Hammond turned to O'Neill. "Is what he said true?"
But it was Teal'c who responded. "Major Carter did express extreme apprehension on more than one occasion."
"And what did you do about it?" Hammond asked.
"I told her she was imagining things," O'Neill admitted quietly. "None of us felt anything but calm and safe there, so I told her she was imagining things." O'Neill sighed and walked over to the table, taking a seat across form General Hammond. "I didn't want to ruin our chances of
getting their technology by investigating Carter's feeling and pissing off the natives, Sir. Daniel's right. What happened to Carter is my fault." O'Neill placed his head down on the table and rubbed the back of his neck.
Sam awoke to a darkened Infirmary and a dark form bending over her. She couldn't make out whom the form was, and that terrified her. It was too dark. Someone was looming over her. Fear too over. This had happened before, and I had not ended well. So Sam did the only thing she
could think to do. She flinched away and screamed at the top of her lungs.
Dr. Janet Frasier backpedaled, shocked at Sam's reaction to her. Then it dawned on her: Sam may not have recognized her. Janet had turned down the lights so her only patient and her patient's self-appointed protector could get some sleep. Janet ran quickly to the switch and
flicked on the overhead lights.
Daniel heard a scream. Sam's scream. He had refused to leave her side, even when Janet threatened him with her needles, hoping to entice him to geo get some sleep in a comfortable bed. It hadn't worked; he had just offered her his arm. So she had compromised with the stubborn archeologist. Janet had pointed to the bed next to Sam and ordered him to lie down and get some sleep. So he had.
Now he was wide awake, reaching out to a terrified Sam. It was dark, but he managed to get to Sam without falling or bumping into anything. Perched on the end of her bed, he grabbed for her hand, calling her name, trying to soothe her. It wasn't working. Something had spooked his best friend so badly that she didn't even realize he was there.
"Sam. Sam, it's me, Daniel. Sam, calm down. You're safe. You're here with me, at the SGC. Sam?" He tried to get through to her. He wasn't getting a response. Just whimpering. Suddenly, the lights cam eon and the sight before Daniel tore him up inside. His best friend was curled up at the head of the bed, arms wrapped around bent knees, shaking violently.
"Oh, God, Sam," a voice behind him said quietly, sadly.
Daniel looked over his shoulder at Janet Frasier. "What happened?" he asked her.
"I had turned off the lights so you two could sleep. I was just leaning over to check her monitors. I thought she was asleep..." Janet trailed off, looking at Daniel in horror. "My God. She didn't know it was me..."
Daniel nodded, turning back to Sam. "She flashed back," he stated with certainty. He slowly reached out with one hand, trying to be non-threatening. "Sam? It's Daniel. You know I won't hurt you. Sam, look at me. Sam, come back to me. Sam?" He was speaking softly, gently, arm
still outstretched. Janet, feeling like a voyeur, watched as Sam began to respond to him. Once she saw Sam begin to slide over toward Daniel, she discretely walked away, giving the two of them some privacy.
Sam accepted Daniel's arms around her, snuggling up to him, wrapping her arms around his waist and burying her face into the crook of his neck. His arms squeezed her against him, being careful not to hurt her ribs or bruises, rubbing her back gently with one hand and stroking her
short, blonde hair with the other. Daniel wasn't sure how long they sat like that, but he was sure it was quite a while. Finally, he broke the silence, checking on her, needing to know that she was okay.
"You want to talk about it?" he asked softly. He felt her shake her head against his neck. "That's okay. We can talk about it when you're ready. Do you wan to go back to sleep?" Again he felt her shake her head no. "That's okay, too. We can just sit here if you want." This
time Sam nodded. So they just sat there. Slowly, Sam began to relax in Daniel's arms, the shaking finally stopping. And still, Daniel held her, because he didn't know what else to do.
"Daniel," Sam whispered, startling him somewhat. He hadn't been expecting her to talk.
"Yes, Sam," he said, his voice just as quiet.
"I'm a little hungry." Then Sam's stomach growled loudly.
Daniel looked down at her hand poker her gently on the good arm. "Only a little?" he kidded.
Sam giggled. "Okay, a lot," she admitted. "Do you think you could smuggle me in some real food?"
At that moment, Daniel would do anything for Sam to hear her joke and giggle again. "Sure, Sam. What do you want?"
"A real honest to goodness, juicy cheeseburger. Smothered in ketchup and mayo. And greasy french fries. And a Diet Pepsi. With lemon."
Nodding, Daniel let Sam go and stood up. Bending down to her, he took her face in his hands and kissed her gently on her forehead. "Will you be okay while I go over to O'Malley's and get you that burger?" Sam bit her bottom lip and nodded her head bravely.
"Do not worry, DanielJackson. Major Carter will not be alone," a deep baritone voice spoke up.
Daniel glanced over at Teal'c, then brought his gaze back to Sam. "I'll be back as soon as I can." Sam nodded again and squeezed Daniel's hand.
As Daniel passed by Teal'c he said, "Thanks. Just keep her calm." With a final glance back at Sam, smiling at her and receiving a smile from her, anile left to bring her "real" food.
Teal'c came over and sat down in the chair next to Major Carter's bed. He took in Major Carter's appearance. Her blonde hair was disheveled, her right wrist was wrapped up in a support bandage, and there was a thick bandage over her right temple, where he head had impacted with ledge on her fall. But there was a smile on her face. All in all, she looked much better than she ought to, Teal'c thought. "Major Carter, how are you feeling?" he asked.
Sam stretched her arms above her head, wincing as she reached too far and aggravated her injured ribs. "I'm feeling better, Teal'c, thanks. I'm still sore, and I have a little bit of a headache still. Are you okay? Did anything happen to anyone else?"
"No, Major Carter. You were the only one injured."
"How long was I asleep for?"
About 36 hours, Sam," Janet said, coming into view from behind Teal'c.
"And Daniel?" Sam questioned.
"He was here the entire time. I finally convinced him to get some sleep, even if he did so on the bed next to yours," Janet said wryly, shaking her head.
"DanielJackson is most concerned about you," Teal'c stated the obvious.
Sam nodded her head. "I know." She was silent for a moment, and then looked at her two friends. "Where's Colonel O'Neill? Has he been by to visit, too?"
Teal's and Janet exchanged a look, then both turned to Sam. "Uh, Sam, Daniel wouldn't let the colonel near you."
"DanielJackson believes that O'Neill is to blame for your injuries," Teal'c supplied.
Sam shook her head. "The colonel didn't kidnap me and push me off that cliff."
"Yes, but Daniel thinks that if Colonel O'Neill had just listened to you and your feelings then you would never have gotten hurt in the first place," Janet elaborated.
Sam waved her good hand in the air. "That's neither here nor there," she said, unconsciously echoing one of Daniel's phrases. "What we need to do is lock out P9X-771 from our dialing computer and break off any relations we may still have with the Krimm." She looked at Janet and Teal'c in turn, her dark blue eyes concerned. "We no longer have any teams on that planet,
"Colonel O'Neill took SG-9 back to investigate your accident," Janet informed her.
Sam's eyes widened in fright. "Get them back now. They can't ask questions. Asking questions is why someone tried to kill me. I already know all we need to know. Get them back now!" Sam was quickly becoming agitated, her monitors beeping fast, loud, and incessant.
"Sam, you need to calm down," Janet tried to soothe her and ease her back down.
"Dammit Janet! Tell General Hammond to recall the colonel and SG-9! Now! The Krimm created the Goa'uld!"
"Created?" Janet asked, stopping herself suddenly from pushing down patient and staring in confusion at her instead. Teal'c looked as equally confused, evidenced by his one raised eyebrow.
"Yes, Janet. Created. They are very advanced genetic engineers. They made the Goa'uld in a laboratory. For years they used them for scientific experiments, like we use rats and mice. Only the Goa'uld evolved passed their creators."
Janet looked at Teal'c in horror. "Teal'c, I suggest you go and tell General Hammond to get Colonel O'Neill and the other back right away."
Teal'c rose and nodded. "I will do so immediately. We shall return to hear more, Major Carter."
"So, you're telling us that the Goa'uld aren't natural? That they were created in a laboratory?" General Hammond asked incredulously for about the fiftieth time. Although truth be told, he wasn't sure what he was so incredulous about, Carter's starling revelation about he Goa'uld, of the fact that she looked good for someone who, only 48 hours before, was nearly killed.
Sam shook her head in frustration. Why couldn't they just get this? "Crated, genetically engineered, tweaked, whatever you want to call it. Maybe they were the planet's equivalent of mice and the people genetically enhanced them. Or maybe they were made, cell by cell. It doesn't matter! The point is that the Krimm made the Goa'uld the way they are today. And now they are making biological weapons! Quite possibly for the Goa'uld!"
"And how did you find out about this, Carter?" O'Neill asked, unbelievingly. "There is absolutely no evidence of the Goa'uld on the planet, and nothing to suggest that the Krimm and the Goa'uld are allies."
"I asked questions about their science," she said simply.
"And they just told you this?"
"No, Sir. I did some digging," Sam replied sardonically. "Which is why they tried to kill me."
"Major, if what you say is true..." Hammond began in a quiet tone.
"Then we may be in big trouble," O'Neill finished for the general.
"Not necessarily, Sirs. If we lock P9X-771 out of the dialing computer, then we never go back. And with our Iris, they can never send anyone...or anything...through to us," Sam pointed out.
Everyone was quiet for a moment, reflecting on what Sam had just told them when Daniel returned with Sam's food. He stopped when he was the crown standing around her bed. His expression went from surprise to anger as soon as he laid eyes on Jack O'Neill. Jack stared back at him,
an uneasy expression on his face.
Sam broke the tension. "Great. My food. I'm starving. Thanks so much, Daniel." She beckoned him forward. He went to her, suddenly forgetting about Jack when he saw how lively Sam was. And happy. Happy to see him.
Don't kid yourself, Danny-boy, he said to himself. She isn't happy to see you. Just the food you brought her. As he reached Sam, she took the food from him with her unbandaged hand and placed it on the other side of herself. Then she grabbed his arm and pulled him down on the bed with her. "Because you were so sweet to go and get this for me, you can have some of my fries, and a few bites of my burger, if you want." Then she smiled broadly at him.
He looks so cute, Sam thought, with his glasses crookedly perched on his nose, one side of his black shirt untucked from his green combat pant, and a sweet, shy smile on his face, with bright blue eyes shining at her.
Daniel smiled back at her. She's smiling at me. She's smiling brightly at me, he thought happily. "No need to share, Sam..."
"But I want to," she interrupted him.
"...because I got two. One for you and one for me," Daniel finished with a twinkle in his bright blue eyes.
The two dug into the burgers Daniel had brought, completely forgetting about the others around them until someone coughed conspicuously behind them. General Hammond.
"Sorry, Sir," Sam apologized around a mouthful of juicy cheeseburger.
Hammond smiled. "It's quite alright, Major. I think, after what you've been through, you deserve that. After you've eaten that and gotten some more rest, we'll talk more. I want to know everything you uncovered on that planet."
Sam nodded. "Yessir." Hammond left, followed closely by Teal'c, then Janet, and finally, with a last look at Sam and Daniel, O'Neill close behind them. Sam noticed that Daniel had not even glanced at the colonel since his first brief look when he entered the Infirmary with her food.
"This," Daniel said to Sam, holding up half of a dripping burger, "was a good idea."
Sam smiled at him and nodded. What's going on with you, Daniel? Why are you so angry with your best friend? Sam thought to herself as she watched him savor his burger. As they continued to eat in silence their eyes locked, blue on blue, and emotions came tumbling through. Sam dropped her burger and reached forward, brushing her lips gently over his for the briefest of kissed, then enveloping Daniel in a hug.
As Sam gave him the slightest whisper of a kiss, Daniel's eyes widened in surprise. She's kissing me. She's kissing me. She's kissing me, ran through is head in that brief moment of moments. And in that moment, Daniel came to a conclusion: he wanted to kiss her back and never stop. That he, in fact, was in love with his best friend, Sam Carter. But, before he could act on his newly realized emotions, Sam had pulled away from his lips and wrapped her arms around him.
"Thanks, Daniel," Sam said hoarsely.
"For bringing me this food. For sitting with me the whole time I was here. For climbing down to get me. For being my friend. For...being you."
"Any time, Sam."
As they finished eating, Daniel asked Sam what she had been telling the others while he was gone. She filled him in on the origins of the Goa'uld and the reason for her attempted murder. He was in awe.
"Wow. The Goa'uld were created in a lab. That's...wow."
"You're a linguist who speaks 23 Earth languages, and all you can come up with is 'wow'," Sam teased her best friend.
Daniel shrugged. "It fits." He watched Sam as she nodded in reply, then yawned loudly. "Tired?" he asked softly. She nodded again. "Why don't you lie down and get some more sleep."
"Okay." Sam leaned back into the pillows while Daniel cleaned up the mess from their lunch. He tossed the garbage into the trashcan, then leaned over Sam, intending to give her a kiss on her lips. But he chickened out. He kissed her forehead instead. When he pulled back, Sam
smiled at him, barely able to keep her eyes open. Daniel smiled back.
"Sweet dreams, Sam. I'll be back to check on you in a couple of hours. Call me if you need me before then." Sam didn't reply. She was already asleep. Daniel stood by her bed, studying her sleeping form. There was a small smile on her lips which Daniel wanted to believe was from
him and his kiss. Her short, blonde hair curled around her face, gently brushing her cheeks. She actually looked very peaceful in sleep, more peaceful than most people would be, considering what had happened to her. "Sweet dreams, Sam," he repeated, then left the Infirmary, making sure the light was left on.
After leaving Sam asleep in the Infirmary, Daniel escaped to the quiet of his office. He had a lot to think about. First and foremost were his feelings toward Sam. He loved her. He knew that for certain now. He was desperately in love with Sam and wanted so much to tell her, but
he was afraid. What if she doesn't feel the same for me? he asked himself. Would telling Sam how I feel ruin our friendship? I don't want to lose her. He dropped heavily into his desk chair and scrubbed his face with the palms of his hands. She did kiss me, though. Or what if
she thinks this is just a reaction to her almost being killed? Or what if she does feel the same way, but it doesn't work out between us? We could ruin our friendship that way, too. Or change the whole dynamic of our team. No, it's better if I don't say anything right now. Let
her get better, then see how I feel. Yeah, Daniel, take the coward's way out.
Also on his mind were his thoughts on Jack. Why didn't he listen to Sam? He usually does. And now, because he chose this time to be a complete dickhead, instead of a partial one, Sam nearly died. It'll be different next time. Next time I'll make sure he listens to her. Or
anyone else who comes to him with a concern or a feeling.
A knock on the door interrupted his musings. He pulled his hands away from his face and stared right at Jack O'Neill. Before he could say anything, Jack began to speak.
"Daniel, for what it's worth, I'm sorry I didn't listen to Carter. I should have known better. Things are never that simple and easy for us." He stopped, trying to read Daniel's reaction to what he was saying. Nothing. Daniel was just staring at him, no emotion at all on his face. "If I could take it all back..."
Daniel closed his eyes and sighted deeply. "I know, Jack. And I know it really wasn't your fault that Sam got hurt. Who knows? If you had listened to her, they may have attacked us all and we'd all be dead right now." He sighed again, staring at his feet. "I just hate seeing
her hurt, you know?"
"Yeah," Jack replied. They were silent for a moment, Daniel just sitting in his chair, Jack standing in the doorway, each lost in their own thoughts. Once again, Jack broke the silence. "You should tell her."
Daniel looked up abruptly and said, "What?"
"What?" Jack countered in what both Carter and Daniel referred to his "acting stupid" voice. Well, if Daniel wanted to pretend, then so could he. For now.
"Well, I'm headed home. Wanna ride?"
Daniel shook his head. "Nah. I've got a lot of work to catch up on. Thanks anyway, though."
"Okay. Just make sure she takes it easy. You know Carter. Once she's feeling even a teeny bit better she'll be working herself into her grave." Jack saw Daniel wince and immediately realized what he had just said. "Ooh, bad choice of words. Sorry," he apologized contritely.
"I'll keep my eye on her, Jack. See ya tomorrow."
Sam awoke again in the Infirmary. But this time she wasn't scared; someone had left the light on. Daniel, she realized immediately. He was always so thoughtful of others. She looked around for him, but he wasn't there. However, there was a piece of paper propped up by the lamp on the table next to her bed. It had her name scrawled on it in Daniel's familiar, messy handwriting. There was also a paper bag sitting by the note. Reaching out, being careful not to pull too much on her injured ribs, she picked up the note and opened it up.
Hi. I came by to check up on you, but you were sleeping. You looked
so peaceful that I didn't want to wake you. I'll be back later, but in
the meantime, in case you wake up, I left you a little something to
occupy your time. Enjoy.
P.S. Janet keeps a portable DVD player in the third drawer down on the left side of her desk.
Sam then grabbed the bag and opened it up. Inside were chocolate walnut cookies and a DVD. Sam took a bite of one of the cookies and pulled out the DVD. Her eyes widened and she smiled in happiness. It was one of her favorite movies, but one she didn't happen to own. "Say
Anything", starring John Cusack and Ione Skye. She knew it was one of Daniel's favorites, too. He was so sweet to bring her cookies and give her his movie. As Sam stared at the DVD, her mind drifted to thoughts of her best friend. Kind, sensitive, sweet Daniel with a heart of gold and a gently, loving soul. He's someone who rushes headlong into danger to help someone else without thinking of himself. He constantly puts his hear out on his sleeve, no matter how many times it gets broken. Daniel was her rock, her haven. No matter what happened to her, he was always there, saying the right thing, doing the right thing, looking after her even when she didn't think she needed looking after.
She thought of the year when he was gone. It had been one of the hardest times of her life, if not the hardest. Losing Daniel had been more difficult than losing her mother. When her mother had died, she still had her brother to turn to when things got rough. When Daniel died,
she had no one. He would have been the one she would have gone to for help getting through it all. But he was the one who was gone, and she had had no one to turn for comfort and support.
"Penny for your thoughts?" a voice said from her left, startling her. Sam looked up quickly and saw Janet.
"Janet, you scared me."
"Sorry, Sam. You were gone there for a moment. What's on your mind?"
Sam gestured to the end of the bed and Janet took a seat. It was hard for Sam to imagine how close she and Janet had become. They were so different from each other. Sam was tall and leggy, with blonde hair and blue eyes. Janet was short, with dark hair and dark eyes. Where Sam often kept things in and kept her emotions in check. Janet was an explosion waiting to happen. If she was mad at you, you knew it. If she was happy with you, you knew it. With Sam, you really had to know her to know what she was feeling.
"I was just looking at what Daniel left me," Sam said, holding up the movie and cookies. "He's so sweet to do this."
Janet nodded. "Yes, he is. Do you know that the whole time he was here sitting with you, my nurses barely got any work done? They were too busy staring at him and whispering to each other about him."
Sam smiled wryly ad shook her head in amusement. "He does have that effect on people, doesn't he."
"Who has an effect on people?" Daniel asked, coming into the Infirmary.
"Well, apparently, you do," Janet informed him, getting up off the bed. Daniel looked at her in confusion as he made his way over to Sam's bed. "You set Sam off into some deep thoughts when she woke up and saw your presents."
"And it seems that all the nurses here have a thing for you," Sam teased, trying to turn the conversation from her and her thoughts. She wasn't yet ready to share them with anyone, even her two closest friends. Not until she knew exactly what she was thinking and feeling about
Daniel blushed and looked at the ground, which made Sam just love him more. Most guys would have beamed and puffed out their chests when they were told that all the women in the vicinity had a crush on them and said something egotistical. But not Daniel. He took the road of quiet
"Well, now that you're here, Daniel, Sam can leave."
Sam was so busy staring at Daniel and thinking about his reaction to being told the nurses thought he was hot, that she almost completely missed what Janet was saying. "Huh? Leave?" she asked, looking at Janet in confusion.
"Yes, Sam," Janet said, smiling in amusement at Sam. I think my nurses aren't the only ones with a crush on our resident archeologist, she said to herself. "I told Daniel that if you were awake and doing well when he returned he could take you home. Provided you promise to take it easy and stay away for at least five days."
"Great. So I can go home and eat my cookies and watch my movie?" Sam asked, happiness creeping into her voice. Janet nodded. Sam threw off her bedcovers and swung her legs to the ground, wincing slightly at eh abrupt movement to her injured ribs. But she didn't care. She wanted
to go home. She stood, a little shaky at first, but okay. "C'mon, Daniel. Let's go home, order in pizza, and watch the movie. Quick," she said, looking around, "where are my clothes?"
It was twenty days since Sam had first been brought back through the Stargate after being pushed off a cliff. Twenty days since Daniel had become her self-appointed protector. He had come over every evening for dinner, and usually a movie or some good TV show. Some nights, when Sam would wake from a nightmare, she would call him, and he would talk to her until she had calmed down. One time she hadn't, and he had come racing over and stayed with her the whole night. She had been convinced hat whoever had pushed her off the cliff was in her house. Rationally, both Sam and Daniel knew that wasn't possible, but sometimes dreams and feelings weren't rational. So he had held her all night, letting her get some sleep.
Twenty days since Daniel Jackson had become Sam Carter's hero.
Twenty days since Sam had kissed Daniel. They hadn't kissed since, or talked at all about that kiss in the Infirmary.
Now, Sam was sitting in on her first briefing since the mission where she had gotten injured. SG-1 had been on stand-down while she recuperated, restricted to the base, or in Sam's case, home. But now she was well enough to go on a mission. Her ribs were healed, her bruises mostly faded. Her right wrist, though still fractured and bandaged, was nowhere near as bad as it had been. The cast was gone. As long as she didn't bang it against anything it was okay. She could even hold things with her hand and write with a minimum of success. Daniel had been doing most of her handwriting the past twenty days. Or she had used the computer. But she had preferred having Daniel write for her because she just preferred to have Daniel around.
She turned her attention to what General Hammond was saying. "The MALP shows a breathable atmosphere, similar vegetation, minimal animal life, and heavy deposits of naquadah. Your mission is to go in and determine any possible signs of intelligent life well as set up a mining operation for the naquadah. You leave in one hour. Dismissed."
The four members of SG-1 stood up and filed out of the briefing room. They had one hour to kill before leaving for their mission and they all decided to spend the time eating blue Jell-O in the commissary. Except for Teal'c; he preferred red Jell-O.
"So," O'Neill said conversationally. "This sounds like an easy mission. We go in, find the naquadah, paint a big, ole red X on it, and then let the mining guys come in and do their thing." He received a raised eyebrow from Teal'c, a side glance from Daniel, and a shrug of the shoulders by Carter.
Jack sighed. Things had been strained between his team since Carter had been injured on their last mission. There hadn't been much conversation, and no hockey nights at the colonel's house in the past twenty days. Carter had pretty much spent those days at home, not really in the
mood for visitors or for going out. Daniel, though he had assured Jack he no longer thought him responsible for Carter's injuries, had remained aloof, splitting his time between engrossing himself in his artifacts and checking up on Carter. And Teal'c...well, Teal'c was never a man of many words. But even he seemed more silent that usual. They were no longer functioning well as a unit. Jack new that something drastic had to happen, or his team would fall apart permanently.
I can't believe I'm doing this, Sam thought to herself as she walked down the steps from the Stargate. The Stargate on P3R-982. I went back through the Stargate, even after what happened to me the last time. Of course I did. It's what I do. Something bad happens, I shake it off,
and then move on to the next bad thing. She glanced over at Daniel. At least Daniel's here, she thought. He won't let anything happen to me.
Daniel glanced over at Sam. On the outside she looked great. Calm, cool, collected. But on the inside Daniel knew she was a wreck. This was her first mission after nearly being killed on one, and Daniel knew Sam well enough to know that she was extremely nervous and that if anyone went up to her and said "Boo" she'd probably jump out of her skin. He would have suggested they wait a few more days, but he knew that today, or another week from now, it would still be just as hard for Sam, if not harder. I'll keep my eye on her through this mission, Daniel vowed to himself. I'll make sure she feels safe and comes out of this okay and ready for our next turn through the Stargate.
Teal'c watched DanielJackson watch Major Carter. He had suspected for some time that DanielJackson cared more for Major Carter that as a friend and that Major Carter cared for O'Neill. However, in observing the glanced between DanielJackson and Major Carter as they walked through the woods, he began to revise his assessment of the Tau'ri behavior. Both seemed very ill at ease, each constantly glancing at each other. DanielJackson would only look at Major Carter when he knew she wasn't looking, and vice versa. Obviously, DanielJackson did not want Major Carter to know how worried he was about her. Major Carter didn't want
DanielJackson to know how nervous she was. DanielJackson's glances were those of care and concern, and Major Carter's were of safety. She feels safe with DanielJackson her, Teal'c realized. He watched as DanielJackson moved closer to Major Carter and discreetly took her hand in his. Neither looked at the other, but she could see that contact immediately set them both at ease. Now he was almost certain that DanielJackson and Major Carter cared for each other deeply, were possibly even more than friends. They were connected, sharing a bond that he had often read about in human romance novels or seen on television shows. Soulmates,
Teal'c said to himself. They are what the Tau'ri refer to as soulmates.
Jack O'Neill whistled to fill in the silence that was usually covered up by Daniel and Carter talking animatedly about some new science or cultural thing. But there was no talking this time, no shared beliefs or playful teasing. Jack was leading the team, and knew Teal'c was
bringing up the rear. He glanced back to see the two youngest members of the team, the ones he thought of as "kids", walking close together, but not too close, staring at the ground. He frowned, and returned his gaze to what was in front of him. He tried to come up with something witty to say, something to start a conversation, but nothing came to mind. Damn, this isn't good, he thought. I've got to get my team back, or we're sunk. What is going on with my kids? Back on Earth they were talking to each other. Why, suddenly, did they stop now? He was about to turn around again, to just come right out and ask them what was wrong when he heard laughter from behind him. Carter was laughing. He looked behind him again and was shocked at the
sight before him. Carter was laughing, her face lighting up while Daniel's face was bright red, and he was staring at the ground. However, that wasn't what shocked him. It was the fact that Carter and Daniel were holding hands, swinging their jointed hand between them as they
walked. He must have said something to her, Jack thought. Judging by Daniel's reaction, Jack knew it must have embarrassed him. But he did it, because Carter needed it, even if it totally embarrassed him. Jack smiled to himself and continued to lead the group, eyes forward again. I couldn't ever to that, he thought. I could never voluntarily embarrass myself just for someone else's benefit.
After about an hour of walking through the woods where, once Daniel got Sam to laugh, the two scientists discussed some special about dinosaurs they'd both caught on TV the other night, they came to the biggest site of naquadah on the planet. The woods abruptly ended in a small
clearing leading up to, of all things, a cliffs. At the base of the cliffs were the large naquadah deposits.
"Okay, campers, let's set up!" Jack said excitedly. As he and Teal'c set up the two tents and prepared a fire, Daniel and Sam took out their science equipment to test the soil and the naquadah. Within a few hours it was dark, the only light that of the fire. The four members of SG-1 sat on logs around the fire, eating their MRE's, with Jack and Daniel trying to explain to Teal'c the point of Jurassic Park while Sam listened in silence.
"It was made to be a special effects show-off. And made to scare the kiddies." Jack argued.
"You're right about the fact that it was made to be scary," Daniel agreed. "But not that kind of scary. It was made to scare people about genetic engineering."
"Huh? Genwhat?" Jack asked. Daniel couldn't tell if Jack was only acting ignorant, or if he really didn't understand the point of the movie.
"Genetic engineering," Sam said, speaking up for the first time since coming to the planet, unless alone with Daniel. The colonel gave her a withering look, which make Sam realize he'd only been pretending to be dumb to tease Daniel. Rolling her eyes, Sam continued, "Jurassic Park is about eh dangers of playing God..."
"Of meddling in the natural evolution of a species by attempting to control it," Daniel jumped in.
"Of believing that you can control nature at all," they finished together.
Jack threw up his hands. "Ahhhhh. Shush! It's only a movie, you two."
"Actually, Jack, it was a book first," Daniel informed him.
"A book?" he asked, looking at Sam as if he wanted an explanation for what a book was.
"Yes, Sir. A book. You know, those things with words on paper," she teased. Smiling at him.
Yes, Jack thought happily. I got her to tease me and smile. Carter's going to be okay.
Teal'c watched his human friends in amusement with one raised eyebrow. He felt as if everything was slowly returning to normal. DanielJackson and Major Carter were discussing the merits of science while O'Neill was pretending to be dumb just to annoy them.
"Well, campers, I think it's time for us old folks to turn in," Jack said, standing up and stretching his cramped back muscles. "Daniel, you take the first watch, Carter the second. Teal'c will take third, then me." With that, Jack and Teal'c retired to one of the tents to sleep.
Daniel turned to say goodnight to Sam, figuring she was going to get some sleep as well, but she was still sitting next to him on the log, staring into the fire. "Not tired?" Daniel asked her.
"No, I am, it's just that..." Sam trailed off.
Daniel squeezed her shoulder gently. "I know." And he did. He knew that sometimes, after something traumatic happens, sleeping could be hard to do. When he had lost Sha're, he had had problems sleeping. He had often called Sam in the middle of the night, and she had come right
over and sat up with him watching infomercials and making fun of the products being sold. They both had been exhausted the next morning, but Sam kept coming over when he asked her to. And, some nights, she had stayed up all night by herself, watching him, as he drifted off to sleep,
his head in her lap. He always felt horrible those mornings after, but as Sam so often pointed out when he had continuously apologized for keeping her awake, at least he hadn't been alone, that she had been happy to stay with him, to take care of him. So, he decided to return the
"Sam, why don't you go get your sleeping bag and bring it over here. I'll stay with you while you try to get some sleep."
Sam got up and made her way to the second tent, the one she and Daniel were going to share later. When she returned with her green, military issue sleeping bag, she noticed that Daniel had moved his position. He was sitting on the ground with his back up against the log he had been sitting on. He patted the ground next to him, indicating for her to lie down next to him. Sam arranged herself, and as she was about to lay her head on the ground, Daniel scooted over and make sure her head was pillowed on his lap, his legs stretched out in front of him.
"More comfortable," he said shyly, blushing slightly.
Sam smiled up at him. "Thanks, Daniel."
He brushed some hair off her forehead. "Anytime."
Sam turned from her back to lie partly on her side, facing away from him and tired to go to sleep, but was having no success. She was just about to sit up when she felt Daniel's hand on her head again, this time gently rubbing up and down her head and neck in a soft, soothing
rhythm. Ohhh, that feels good, Sam thought. Daniel has soft, good hands. He better not stop, or I'll have to kill him. Slowly, Sam drifted off to sleep.
Daniel didn't quite know what made him begin to rub Sam's head and neck. He just knew that steady rhythms calmed him down, so he figured that it would work on Sam, too. Plus, if he were truly honest with himself, he wanted to touch her, stroke her. He felt her relax, and then fall asleep. Watching her, he knew he wasn't going to wake her for her shift; he'd take it so she could get some much needed sleep. Daniel knew she would do no less for him were their positions reversed.
As he continued his touch, long after Sam had fallen asleep, Daniel felt himself drifting as well, his mind wandering from his current task of night watch to thoughts of Sam. I know I love her, he thought to himself. But do I love her enough to risk everything, especially our
friendship? Can I take the chance that she doesn't feel the same about me? He looked down at Sam, gently brushing some blonde hair off her forehead again. It was always doing that, falling across her forehead. And he constantly wanted to reach out and brush it away, just to be able to touch her. Especially when they were sitting across from each other, leaning towards each other over one of their desks, Sam smiling and laughing while they discussed some new find in what Jack called their hyperspeed geek speak. She's the reason that I stay so late at the SGC, Daniel finally admitted to himself. Just to catch her late at night, when the place is practically empty, bringing her coffee to keep her going as she worked on some technical thing in her lab. Just being able to stare at her from the doorway to her lab without her realizing he was even there, observing her. She always seemed so happy working late at night, often humming or singing along to her favorite band, The Ramones.
Daniel was so occupied with thoughts of Sam that he didn't hear the people sneaking up behind him. He hardly had time to register a blow to the back of his head before everything went dark and he slumped over Sam.
Teal'c awoke in a dim room lying on his back on a cold, metallic floor with a massive ache in his head. He slowly turned his head to the left, catching sight of O'Neill out of the corner of his eye, lying on his stomach a few feet from him. He looked the other way and saw Major
Carter curled up in a corner at the other end of the room. He did not see DanielJackson. Turning back to face O'Neill, Teal'c called his name, first softly, then getting louder and louder until he received a response.
"Gah...Uh...Did you get the license plate number off that truck?" O'Neill slurred, rolling over onto his side to face Teal'c.
"I am uncertain as to which truck you refer," Teal'c answered.
"I mean...ah...nevermind. I'll explain later. Carter and Daniel?" he asked, still slurring his speech a little.
"Major Carter is on my other side across the room in the corner. I am unsure where DanielJackson is," Teal'c informed him.
"He's near me," Sam croaked out. "He's still out."
"Carter, you okay?" Jack asked, sounding better.
"Yeah. I have a headache, Sir, but I'm okay."
"I too am experiencing a sharp pain in my head," Teal'c confirmed.
"Same here," Jack agreed. He tried to move towards Teal'c, but the process was a very slow crawl. "How long have we been out for?"
Sam glanced at her watch. "Approximately 16 hours, Sir," she dully informed him.
"Great," he replied sarcastically. "Weapons?"
"Even better. Carter, can you get to Daniel, check on him?"
He heard a faint rustling sound that seemed to come from his...he couldn't place where, his head was spinning too much, and he figured it was Carter crawling to Daniel. God, please let Daniel be okay, he prayed. It seemed that whatever drug they had been given to keep them
unconscious had affected Daniel more than himself, Carter, and Teal'c.
"He's breathing fine, Sir. It looks like someone knocked him out with a blow to the back of the head. That may be why he's still unconscious," Sam explained. Jack was impressed with her speech; she sounded remarkably lucid for someone who had this incredible headache. Then again,
maybe her headache wasn't nearly as bad as his.
"Great. So, I'll still be able to kill him," Jack said sarcastically.
"Why do you wish to cause DanielJackson harm?" Teal'c asked O'Neill.
He sounds fine now, too, Jack thought. Why am I the only one who can't form words without a lot of hard work? "'Cause this happened on his watch, right? I mean, the last thing I remember was you and me going to our tent. Carter?"
"I, um, fell asleep next to, ah, Daniel but the fire," Sam told them quickly. "Then I woke up here."
"So it's Daniel's fault," Jack decided, only half joking. He tried to sit up, only to feel his head spin out of control. Groaning, he settled back down. "Nah, can't get up yet. I feel like how I felt the morning after Woodstock." Carter snorted in amusement and Teal'c just
raised one eyebrow. "Can either of you get up?"
Teal'c attempted to sit up and found that he could, though the pain in his head increased somewhat. "I am sitting, O'Neill. We are in a large metal room, but I cannot see much in this dimness." Scooting back a few feet, Teal'c came in contact with one of the room's walls, using
that to help him stay seated. "There do not appear to be any doors or windows."
"Do you know where we are?" Jack asked him.
"I believe a Goa'uld holding cell, O'Neill," Teal said matter of factly.
Jack groaned in response, loudly and theatrically. "This just keeps getting better and better."
"Sir," Sam called softly. "I think Daniel's coming around." Sam carefully rolled Daniel from his side to his back and stroked his cheek gently with the back of her fingers. "Daniel? You in there?"
Daniel groaned and opened his eyes. It was pretty dark, but he could make out a silhouette leaning over him. He felt a familiar touch on his cheek. Sam. He tried to make his mouth work, but nothing came out. He tried again, opening his mouth, but no sound came out. Taking a deep breath, he willed himself to speak. "'Am?" he managed.
"Yes, Daniel, I'm here." She continued to stroke his cheek. "How are you feeling?"
Daniel's eyes rolled a little. "Head. Hurt." He tried to bring his arm up to his forehead to rub it and ended up smacking himself in the nose instead. Okay, he thought, my body isn't working right. He felt Sam grab his hand and squeeze it gently.
"I'm not surprised. You have a nasty bump on the back of your head. It looks like you were hit with something. Do you remember what happened?"
Daniel started to shake his head, but stopped almost immediately when it caused more pain to shoot through his already throbbing head. "No. Quiet. Then hit. Then blackness." He couldn't seem to speak properly, thing properly, he hurt so much. "You 'kay?" he managed to get out.
Sam nodded. "Yeah. We all have headaches, but we're okay." She took a deep breath, not really wanted to tell him everything yet. He was the most injured, as well as the one who had been on watch when they'd been kidnapped. But, he needed to know what they were up against. And why the colonel wanted to kill him. "Daniel," Sam said gently, once again stroking his cheek, "Teal'c thinks we're in a Goa'uld holding cell."
"Goa'uld kidnapped us?" It was getting easier for him to form cohesive words, as long as he concentrated on Sam. Continuing to concentrate on Sam, he asked, "How long unconscious?"
"I'm not sure, since I fell asleep, but it's been about 16 hours since the colonel and Teal'c left us at the fire."
"Wow," was all he could say.
Hours passed before anyone came to SG-1's holding cell. For a while, Jack entertained them all with stories of fishing with his father, but when those stories became boring, Jack, Daniel, and Sam argued over which superhero was the best. Jack voted for Superman, Daniel liked
Spiderman, and Sam was a follower of Batman. They made their cases before Teal'c, thinking someone impartial would make the best judge. Soon,SG-1's sharing time was interrupted by one wall sliding open and five armed Jaffa standing in the opening, pointing staff weapons at them.
Jack and Teal'c stood up first, taking the front positions. Daniel stood in front of Sam, as if by standing in that position he could shield her from whatever the Goa'uld had planned for them.
Then she stepped in front of them. She was obviously a Goa'uld; her eyes glowed white when she looked at them. She had long, straw colored hair and, when they were not glowing, gray eyes. She wore a loose, flowing dress of white and sandals on her feet. And the largest, sexiest
smile on her face. "I am Aphrodite," she introduced herself, moving into the room seductively. "And you are my prisoners."
Sam stared in horror as her male companions took in this new woman's beauty and sexuality. She didn't know as much mythology as Daniel, but she did know hen Aphrodite was: the Greek goddess of beauty, love, and sex. The one things that kept running through her mind was what had
happened at the SGC when Hathor had first shown up.
"What do you want with us?" Sam asked when it was obvious that the colonel wasn't going to say anything.
"Actually, Major Carter, it isn't me who wants you. It is my father who wants you," Aphrodite informed them.
"Zeus?" Daniel asked, finally snapping out of his trance-like state and joining the conversation. "We're dealing with Greek gods, now?"
"Well, there was Cronos," Sam pointed out. Daniel just shrugged and nodded in agreement.
"Why does Zeus desire us?" Teal'c asked Aphrodite.
Aphrodite shook her head and motioned to some Jaffa behind her. They were unarmed and carrying trays of food. "Eat," she ordered SG0-1. "Once you have finished, Father will see you and explain everything to you." She watched as her four prisoners inspected the food and water, but did not touch anything. "I assure you, it is perfectly safe. Father has need of you, so harming you would be pointless." With that she turned and left, the Jaffa, both armed and unarmed, following her. The wall swung shut behind them.
"Well, that was interesting," Jack voiced. He picked up something that resembled an apple and took a bite. "Not bad." He took another bite. "So, Daniel, wanna fill me in?"
"That was Aphrodite. She's the Greek goddess of beauty, love, and, uh, sex," Daniel explained, blushing slightly at the last word and looking at the ground. "She's the daughter of Zeus, who's the supreme ruler of the gods. I guess we're going to meet him later."
"Is this the Zeus with the lightning bolt and thunder?" Jack asked.
Daniel nodded. "Yes, it was said that he could command the thunder and lightning."
"There's nothing sweet about this, Jack. We've been kidnapped by a Goa'uld, a previously unknown Goa'uld, by the way, who, if names mean anything, has at least as much power as Ra had, if not more," Daniel said earnestly.
"Oh, this one's name you remember," Daniel teased, reminding them all that Jack often made up the Goa'uld names or mixed them up.
"...said that her father wanted us. Maybe they won't kill us after all."
"Or they will simply wait to kill us until after we give them what they want," Teal'c said calmly, tilting his head up from the food to catch O'Neill's eye.
On that cheerful note, SG-1 ate the food in silence, thinking over what Jack and Teal'c had said. Even though they didn't speak, they all came to the same conclusion. Teal'c was right.
Zeus, or rather the host of the Goa'uld impersonating Zeus, was very tall. He even was a head taller than Teal'c. He had long, graying hair and a gray beard that hung down to his chest. He wore a crown of laurel leaves on his head, and heavy white robes and sandals on his feet.
Zeus was sitting at the head of a table, a staff leaning on the armrest of his chair.
"Zeus, I presume?" Jack said in his smartass way. "Colonel Jack O'Neill of SG-1. Nice ta meet ya. Wanna tell us why we're here?"
Zeus motioned to the four other chairs at the table. "Please, sit. I wish to speak with you."
Taking the silent cue from O'Neill, SG-1 sat. Jack and Teal'c sat at one side of the table, while Daniel and Sam sat on the other side. All four looked expectantly at Zeus. He just stared at them, saying nothing.
"Well?" Jack prompted, annoyed. "You kidnapped us and dragged our asses onto your ship and threw us in a holding cell. The polite thing to do would be to at least tell us why."
Zeus nodded his head. "From the stories I had heard about SG-1 I knew I would like you, Colonel O'Neill," he said, smiling. "You truly are a man of action, not a man of talk. I admire that." Zeus took a deep breath. "You are here because I have need of you. I wish you to help me."
"Excuse me?" Jack asked, confused. "Why would a Goa'uld want our help? You guys usually want to kill us. Or torture us."
"It is simple. I am fighting a war on two fronts. On one side, my son Ares is fighting to overthrow me and take control of my systems, increasing his might tenfold. On the other side, we are at war with Anubis, trying to gain control of his armies before he destroys all the System Lords," Zeus tried to explain.
"W-w-wait a minute," Jack interjected. "You're at war with Anubis?"
"Yes. As I understand Earth culture, you have many countries ruled by different leaders, correct?"
"Of course," Daniel interjected, understanding exactly what the Goa'uld was getting at. "Customs may be different, but essentially, all living matter functions the same everywhere in the universe."
"Huh?" Jack asked his genius friend. "What the hell are you babbling about?"
"Think of the Goa'uld like Earth citizens, Jack. Each System Lord rules is own systems, or in Earth terms, countries. There is often war between countries, and System Lords." Daniel saw the blank look on Jack's face and tried to elaborate. "We've seen the fighting between the
Goa'uld before, System Lords fighting to gain dominance, like countries do. Nirrti against Cronos. Heru'ur against Apophis. Apophis against Anubis. Yu against Anubis..." Daniel was interrupted by Jack's smart-ass remark.
"You guys certainly don't play well together."
"We do not," Zeus agreed. "As a military man, Colonel O'Neill, you must know it is very unwise to fight a war on two fronts." Jack nodded. "So, I had you brought to me in hopes that you will cooperate and tell me what you know of Anubis, his weapons, his technology, his armies. I
am especially interested in learning all I can about his, what did you call them? Super Soldiers? Once I have quickly and decisively destroyed Anubis, I can turn my might and my resources on the war with my son."
"Not to mention anything you picked up from Anubis," Jack added sardonically. "Now, tell me why we should help you? What's to stop you from coming after us, even after we helped you? No offense, but you snake-heads aren't actually known for staying away from Earth and keeping your
"Because I can destroy Anubis," Zeus stated simply.
"But only if we help you," Daniel countered.
Zeus shook his head. "I can still destroy him without your help. With your help I can do it much faster. Which is better for your planet?"
Jack sighed and leaned back in his chair, which was surprisingly comfortable. This was something he really had to think about. Destroying Anubis as quickly as possible would be the best thing for Earth in the short term. But, would helping a Goa'uld become more powerful help Earth in the long term? How long would it take for Zeus to defeat his son and turn his army, now tripled in size and technology, on Earth? He looked at each of his team members in turn, hoping one of them could give something away in their expressions, something that would help him decide this. Teal'c just sat there, staring at his clasped hands resting on the table. He knew Teal'c would go along with whatever he chose, and most likely wouldn't voice an opinion unless asked. He next looked at Daniel, who was never too shy to give his opinion. Daniel was looking at him, his eyes saying No. Jack nodded his head slightly, then turned to Carter. She was chewing on her bottom lip, a nervous habit of hers, and she was looking back at him. He wasn't sure what her opinion was. Sometimes he could read it off her expression, but other times, like now, he couldn't.
"If you wanted our help, why didn't you just ask? I mean, this kidnapping and holding us prisoner isn't exactly going to earn you brownie points. Besides, how do we know you'll let us go?"
"I will let you go, even if you do not agree to help me. I only kidnapped you because I did not think you would truly listen any other way," Zeus admitted.
"I need sometime to think this over and discuss it with my team. And, if possible, discuss it with my superiors back on Earth," Jack told Zeus.
Zeus nodded. "You and your team may return to your...room. And I can provide you with a communications device that will allow you to talk to whomever you need to on Earth. However, I must inform you that such a communication will be monitored."
"Understood. I will give you my answer later." Jack stood up, and the rest of his team followed. They were led out of the meeting room and back to their holding cell. While they had been gone, four beds had been placed in the room, complete with blankets and pillows. A way of trying to make us feel less like prisoners, Jack thought. He flopped down on one of the beds' the others each took a bed as well. As soon as the wall had closed behind them he asked his team their opinions.
Daniel went first. "Jack, we can't help them. We're crazy to even think about it. We'd basically be making Zeus all-powerful. How can we do that voluntarily? Can you even imagine the damage he'd do to Earth? We've been saying if for years. Having many warring Goa'uld is much better than one all-powerful leader."
"I agree with DanielJackson," Teal'c joined in. "Zeus is very powerful on his own. Apophis often said that if Zeus had attacked him with his armies, Apophis would have been wiped out in less than one day."
Jack turned back to Daniel as Daniel added to his argument. "They way I understand it, the way the Tok'ra have explained it to me, the, for, lack of better terms, Greek System Lords and the Egyptian System Lords pretty much leave each other alone. They act as a system of checks and
balances, much like each branch of the US government acts on the others. They keep each other from getting too powerful, as self-preservation. If the Greeks were to gain more power than the Egyptians, or vice versa, the whole universe could be thrown into a power struggle and an
entire sect of System Lords could be wiped out. That would upset both the political and economical balance in the universe. That would be bad for both sides, no matter who wins. Now, Zeus, the most powerful Greek, is asking us to help him destroy Anubis, the most powerful Egyptian."
"Yes, Daniel, I understand. But the most immediate threat to Earth is Anubis. If we help Zeus, then Anubis is no longer a threat," Jack had to point out.
"But then Zeus will be an even threat than Anubis ever was, because he will have all of his power plus all of Anubis's. And, if he's right, all of Ares's power as well." Daniel stared hard at Jack. "That's a lot of power, Jack."
"Indeed, DanielJackson." Teal'c turned to O'Neill. "If we do not help, it will take them that much longer to destroy each other."
"Plus, they will be so busy fighting it out between each other, they won't have time for Earth," Jack finished slowly, thinking. He then turned to Carter, who was sitting as far away from them as she could. "You haven't said a thing, Carter, which usually means you're thinking. What's on your mind?"
Taking a deep breath Sam said in a small voice, "I think we should help him."
"See," O'Neill said, "We're all in agreement. We don't help..." He broke off and stared at Carter. "What did you say?"
"I said I think we should help Zeus."
O'Neill stared at her dumbfounded, Teal'c and Daniel looking at her much the same. "Carter? Explain."
"I'm not sure I can, Sir. I just have this deep feeling, maybe from Jolinar, that we can trust Zeus."
O'Neill shook his head resignedly. He really wanted to trust Carter, but on this? "You know my recommendation to General Hammond isn't going to be favorable, right?"
Sam nodded. "I know, Sir. I knew the moment Zeus first asked us that you wouldn't help him. It's just that I think...no, I know Zeus can be trusted." Sam sighed deeply. "I'm really very tired, Sir. I'm going to turn in now." With that, Sam pulled the blankets up over her head
and attempted to get some sleep.
"Colonel!" a very irate General Hammond bellowed at Jack. Luckily for Jack it was only a holographic projection of the general, or else Jack might actually fear for his life. "Where the hell are you? What is this technology you are using to communicate with us?"
"Sir, we've been...invited...by a Goa'uld named Zeus to his ship. We're all fine. Don't worry about us. Zeus has an interesting proposition for us. He's asking for our help in defeating Anubis," Jack tried to explain hoping to calm the general down.
"Why would we want to help him?"
"It would end Anubis's threat to Earth," Jack pointed out.
"But open up another one," Hammond finished. "What does everyone else on your team say?"
"I don't think we should help him. Teal'c agrees with me. Even Daniel agrees, and you know Daniel, Sir, always trying to help everyone."
"Major Carter?" Hammond asked. When the colonel hesitated before answering, the general knew he wasn't going to like the answer.
"Carter thinks that we should help him. That we should trust Zeus." Jack rubbed his face with his hands. "She says she has this feeling, Sir. Probably from that snake that invaded her. Anyway, though she doesn't agree with us, she is willing to go with the majority here."
"If you don't agree to help, is this Zeus going to let you go?" Hammond asked the question plaguing everyone's mind at the SGC who was overhearing this conversation.
Jack nodded. "He's going to let us go, regardless of what we choose."
"So he says," Hammond said ominously. There was an uncomfortable silent pause before the general spoke again. "Can you communicate with me again in five hours, keep me updated?" Jack nodded. "Good. We'll talk to you then. Hammond out."
Sam was the first one awake. She looked around at her teammates, making sure they were all accounted for. Daniel was in the bed nearest to her, his mouth open slightly as he slept, glasses dangling from one hand off the edge of the bed. Beyond Daniel was Colonel O'Neill, the sound of his deep snoring reaching her, and oddly, comforting her. Some things never change, she thought. Last was Teal'c, as quiet and stoic in sleep as he was awake.
Quietly, so as not to wake her teammates, Sam left the bed and crept over to the wall that doubled as a door into their room. She knocked softly, hoping that it would be heard by someone outside and not her slumbering teammates. To her relief, the door opened silently, and she found herself facing two armed Jaffa. Trying to put as much courage into her words as she could she said, "I wish to speak with Zeus."
The two Jaffa nodded, as if they had expected this, and motioned for Sam to follow them. As she walked between the two armed Jaffa, Sam looked around at the ship. It was much different than Apophis's ships, or Anubis's ships. The walls were made of smooth white stone or marble.
The corridors were wider, and felt more open, probably due to the ceilings being higher. The writing on the walls was different as well. It didn't look like Egyptian hieroglyphics. Well, that makes sense, Sam thought. It's probably Greek on the walls.
The Jaffa led Sam into the room where she and the rest of SG-1 had met Zeus earlier. He held out his hand, indicating that she should sit, which she did. "I understand that you wish to speak to me."
Sam nodded, not really sure why she wanted to speak to Zeus. She just knew that she had to. She had to know why he felt so familiar, why she knew he could be trusted. "The others of my team don't think we should help you."
"I know. I monitored the conversation between Colonel O'Neill and his superior. I also know that you do not feel this way," Zeus said.
"I feel like you can be trusted. That you should be trusted. But I'm not sure where these feelings are coming from. I think they might be from Jolinar."
Before Sam could explain who Jolinar was Zeus asked, eyes going wide in surprise, "Jolinar of Malksur? You know Jolinar?"
"I carried Jolinar for a short time. She died to save me and I still have many of her memories and feelings. Since I have never met you, these feelings of trust and understanding must come from her," Sam tried to explain. "Did you know Jolinar?"
"I knew her very well."
Sam was about to say some cutting remark about possibly torture or some other evil that Goa'uld do, when it registered that there was no hatred or loathing, or satisfaction in his voice. It was just a statement of fact with something laced underneath. Something like admiration, or
maybe it was friendship. "How well did you know Jolinar?"
Zeus just smiled at Sam and instead of directly answering her question he said, "Did you know that I am Tok'ra?" Sam looked at him in confusion, and Zeus gave a little laugh. "Oh yes. I opposed Ra. I even made an alliance with the Tok'ra. We shared information, fought alongside
each other to try to destroy Ra, and many other Goa'uld System Lords. Of course, the Tok'ra had no idea who I really was. Until Jolinar."
"She discovered who you were," Sam stated.
Zeus nodded. "She didn't expose me, though."
"You weren't hurting the Tok'ra, you were helping them. And as long as you were helping them, Jolinar didn't dare expose you." Sam was staring at Zeus, but her eyes were unfocused, like she was seeing things that weren't really there. She was shifting through the memories of
Jolinar. "You worked with Jolinar very often."
"Yes I did. We made a good team. She was very strong and courageous. She was very dedicated to her cause. I admired her very much."
"She admired you, too. That you would risk everything, even your own systems to fight with the Tok'ra." Sam's eyes finally focused on Zeus. "She had always wanted to ask you, but never could. Why did you do it? Why did you fight with the Tok'ra against Ra?"
"Ra was becoming too powerful, much too powerful for all of us to control. The separate sections of the System Lords, the Egyptians, the Greeks, the Japanese, et cetera, are not supposed to openly declare war on each other. We are not allowed to try to destroy one System Lord of another section unless that System Lord has become too powerful. Then we are supposed to join together to eliminate him. At the time, no one agreed with me that Ra was too powerful. So I fought alone, in secret."
Sam frowned. "If what you're saying is true, then you and Anubis have, roughly, equal power. You aren't allowed to destroy him."
Zeus sighed. "And now I admit the truth. I only have enough power to defeat him if the other System Lords join with me. Getting all the sections to fight together has proved useless. Many of the Greeks will not fight alongside Egyptians, and vice versa. And only Lord Yu has
shown any interest in defeating Anubis. The other System Lords do not think we stand a chance against him. But with your knowledge of Anubis's super soldiers and armies, I will have valuable information to bring to the other System Lords which may make them change their mind and join in the fight against Anubis. And I fear that Anubis will use my war with Ares to his advantage and gain more power while we Greeks fight it out amongst ourselves. Then there will be no one to stop him." Zeus came over and knelt in front of Sam, taking her hands in his. "I have no desire to harm your planet. And whether you help me or not, I will send you and your teammates home. I give you my word." Zeus stood up and took his seat next to Sam, facing her. "I'm sure my story has brought many questions for you. I will do my best to answer them."
The first thing Daniel noticed when he awoke was that Sam was missing. Sitting in bed, he glanced around the room, hoping she maybe just left the bed and was pacing around, thinking. No such luck. Sam was gone.
"Jack! Teal'c!" Daniel shouted, waking the other SG-1 members. "Sam's missing!"
Instantly awake, Jack asked, "Carter's missing? What do you mean?"
"I mean she isn't here!"
"What?" Jack bolted out of the bed and began banging on the wall where he remembered the door was. Daniel and Teal'c were right on his heels. "Open up! I demand to see Major Carter! Where is she! What have you done with her!"
The wall swung away and the men found themselves looked down three staff weapons. Standing next to the Jaffa holding the weapons was Aphrodite. "Major Carter is with my father. When they are done, she will return here."
"I demand you bring her back here right now! What does Zeus want with Carter anyway?" Jack yelled at her.
"Jack," Daniel said quietly, knowingly. "Zeus overheard our conversation with Hammond, remember."
"So?" Jack asked blankly.
"So, he knows Sam wants to help him. He's going to use her to get to us," Daniel stated.
Jack turned back to Aphrodite, anger blazing in his brown eyes. "If he harms one hair on Carter's head..."
"You have it all wrong, I'm afraid. It wasn't my father who asked to speak to Major Carter. It was Major Carter who asked to speak to my father." With that, Aphrodite closed the door, effectively ending their conversation.
Sam entered the room where the rest of SG-1 were being kept carrying a tray laden down with food and water. She stepped around her teammates who were silently inquiring what was going on, and placed the food on the table in the middle of the room. "Food's pretty good, if anyone's hungry," she said lamely, hoping to break the ice. No such luck.
"Carter, what the hell's going on!" Colonel O'Neill demanded angrily. "Why would you go all by yourself to meet a Goa'uld System Lord? You could have been in serious trouble? You got a death wish or something?"
"I had to go and speak to Zeus alone, Sir. I was never in any danger," she tried to explain, tried to calm him down. "I feel this deep, emotional friendship for Zeus. I trust him completely. If I had to place my life in his hands, I'd be perfectly comfortable with that. I wanted to know why."
"You trust a Goa'uld System Lord?" Jack cried out.
Sam turned and looked O'Neill directly in the eye. "Yes Sir."
"Carter," Jack began, exasperated.
"Look, Sir," Sam cut him off. "I didn't understand it any more than you do. But now that I know the whole story, it makes a lot more sense."
"Carter, NONE of this makes sense!"
"What did you discuss with Zeus?" Teal'c asked, trying to interrupt the two human officers before they hurt each other.
"That Zeus feels indebted to us for killing Ra. That he doesn't care about adding Earth to his systems. This isn't a power thing for him. His motivation for destroying Anubis is very simple. It's good, old-fashioned revenge. Anubis and Cronos had the woman Zeus loved killed."
"Hera?" Daniel asked, naming Zeus's wife from Greek mythology.
"No, not Hera," Sam said cautiously.
Jack covered his face with his hands and shook his head in frustration. Teal'c raised an eyebrow and cocked his head to the right, as if he was listening for the answer from some voice only he could hear. Daniel just stared ate her, not even blinking, silently communicating to her that he knew.
Jack growled in frustration. "Who then, Carter?"
But it was Daniel who answered. "Jolinar." Both Jack and Teal'c quickly turned their gaze on Sam. She nodded to confirm Daniel's answer.
"Okay, Carter. Start at the beginning."
"Zeus is a Tok'ra, in the literal sense of the word," Sam began, sitting down on one of the beds. She brushed her blonde hair out of her face. The others stared at her, dumbfounded, as if she had just told them Chris Columbus was wrong and the Earth was indeed flat. "He fought
against Ra, trying to destroy him because he had become too powerful. None of the Tok'ra knew who Zeus really was. He ended up working closely with Jolinar, and she found out who he was. She didn't expose him, though, since he was helping the Tok'ra." Sam paused, briefly, staring
down at the floor, the continued in a much quieter voice. "And because they had become close friends. Zeus, apparently, fell in love with her. Then Anubis and Cronos found out that Zeus was working with the Tok'ra to destroy Ra. They took their revenge by ordering the ashrak to kill Jolinar.
"But at that time, Anubis was banished by the System Lords," Daniel said.
Sam nodded. "He was," she agreed. "However, it really was only a banishment in theory at that time. A few of the System Lords, Cronos being one of them, had contact with Anubis."
"Why didn't Cronos and Anubis expose Zeus? I'm sure that the other System Lords would have loved to know if one of their own was plotting against them," Jack wanted to know.
"Because exposing Zeus would have caused a breakdown in their whole political structure," Daniel answered for her. "They would all start accusing each other of plotting against one another. Wars would break out, and they'd destroy themselves."
Sam nodded. "So they decided to punish Zeus in another way, by taking away that which he loved," she finished Daniel's explanation.
"So, lemme get this straight," Jack said. "Zeus tried to help the Tok'ra overthrow Ra. There he met Jolinar and they became friends. Zeus fell in love with her. Then he was caught helping the Tok'ra by Cronos and Anubis, so they tried to hurt Zeus by having Jolinar assassinated?" He shook his head in wry amusement. "Move over Days of Our Lives."
"Basically, yeah," Sam confirmed.
"So you think that just because he was friends, and I use the term loosely, with Jolinar, he can be trusted with us?" Jack asked, trying hard to understand, but not. He was pretty sure Carter was going off the deep end.
"Yes," Sam replied simply. "He has no reason to lie to us, or to hurt us."
"He's a Goa'uld, Carter!" Jack shouted at her. "Do you hear yourself? You're asking us to work with, to trust, a Goa'uld.!"
"We've done it before," Sam shot back, purposely leaving off the 'sir' at the end of the sentence out of anger. Why couldn't he just listen to her for once? "We've worked with Lord Yu on more than one occasion."
"That was different," Jack stated petulantly.
"Yeah? How?" Sam demanded.
Not having an answer, Jack replied with, "It just is."
Sam looked away from him and shook her head in disgust. "I should have known you wouldn't listen to me. You didn't on Krimm. Why should you now?" Sam took a deep breath, and still facing away from her commanding officer she said, "I knew I was right on Krimm. I know I'm right now."
"Are you sure that this feeling comes from you and not some misplaced affection from Jolinar?" Jack asked her, lashing out, trying to hurt her. For what reason, he didn't know.
"What does it matter?" Sam said quietly, bitterly, walking away from him. "You've already made up your mind, and because you're the commander, I have to follow you, right?"
"Well, Carter, unless you can give me a damn good reason to work with a Goa'uld..." Jack trailed off, frustrated with his second in command as well as angry with her because he was so frustrated. And, of course, there was her tone of voice, dangerously close to insubordination. Jack was scared; this wasn't the Carter he knew. She seemed very angry with him, most likely for what had happened to her on Krimm. Though she claimed she didn't blame him, it was possible that she did, even without consciously knowing it.
Sam sighed and covered her face with her hands. "Zeus agreed to show me how the Goa'uld shielding technology works so we can build our own shields," she said around her hands.
"Wha...what?" Daniel stuttered. "What did you say?"
Sam turned to face her best friend. "Zeus will show me how to create the Goa'uld shield technology so we can defend ourselves better against the Goa'uld."
"If we help him," Daniel finished Sam's sentence. She nodded. Still locking eyes with Sam, Daniel said evenly, "Jack...we may want to consider this now."
Jack nodded, lost in thought. "We could use those shields. We're set to talk to General Hammond in half an hour. I'll mention this little deal you concocted with Zeus. It may make him change his mind."
Sighing deeply, Sam moved away from her teammates. She wanted to be alone, had to be alone, which was something very hard to do in a twelve by twelve foot room with three other people. She wasn't sure why, but she was feeling very isolated at the moment, and the last thing she
wanted was to be around people who would force her to talk to them and didn't trust her judgments. But, unfortunately, her commanding officer did not get the hint and did not leave her alone.
Jack was worried about Carter. She seemed so lost at the moment, like a little kid in a big family who didn't know where they belonged, how they fit in. He followed her to the corner she was now standing in and placed a hand on her shoulder. "Wanna talk about what happened to you on Krimm?" he asked.
Sam shook her head. "No, Sir."
"Carter, I think you should talk about it. It might help. I'll listen."
Sam laughed bitterly. "That's rich, coming from you."
"What the hell's that supposed to mean?" Jack asked, going from attempting to be comforting to outright anger in less than ten seconds.
"It means, Sir," Sam said sarcastically, "that you're the last person I'd talk to about this." Sam knew she was dangerously close to insubordination. In fact, she was sure she'd crossed the line, but she didn't care. How dare he lecture me on talking things out, she thought to
herself. "You're the king of bottling up emotions. Jack O'Neill. The perfect man for the job when it comes to doing something military, like blowing something up. But when it comes to something emotional? You run away!"
"Sam," Jack tried to interrupt his second in command before she said or did something she'd regret later, or that he'd be forced to report. Also, honestly, he really didn't want to get emotional with Carter, or have her get emotional on him. That was just something he couldn't deal with. A tough as nails, military Major Carter he could deal with, even a hyper Doctor Carter. But not a crying, emotional Sam Carter.
Sam didn't let it show that the use of her first name caught her off guard. The colonel only used her first name when he was really worried about her. Instead, she went on the offensive, three weeks of hurt and anger coming to the forefront with nothing holding it back. "Shut up!"
she shouted at him. "You said you'd listen, so listen! Do you really want to know all this? Because I really don't want to deal with this emotional crap with you!" Sam was becoming angrier and angrier as the conversation continued. The others saw that she was bordering on
hysterical and weren't sure how to calm her down. "I mean, really? What's going to happen when I tell you this? When I tell you that the Krimm didn't take kindly to me asking questions about their science and what they knew of the Goa'uld? When I tell you I think they drugged me so I would be sleepy when they came for me? When I tell you they dragged me out of my tent and to the cliff? When I tell you they game me something to make me look like I had a reaction to the food and became disoriented and fell off the cliff? When I tell you I fought back but was too weak from the drugs to do anything? When I tell you that they hit me with a club, trying to knock me out? When I tell you the finally gave up and just shoved me over the edge?' By then Sam was crying openly, the tears running down her face. "Be honest, Colonel! What would your reaction be? I'll tell you what your reaction would be!" She was yelling now, in addition to crying heavily. "You'd just awkwardly pat me on the back and tell me "it's okay" and then ask something stupid like what was for dinner! Or you'd just walk away, very quickly. Because you can't deal with those pesky, emotional situations! Why can't you just accept that sometimes feelings can be just as strong, just as correct as factual information! If you had just listened to my feelings..." Here Sam broke down completely, not able to continue talking. She collapsed to the floor, hands covering her face as she sobbed uncontrollably.
Jack O'Neill didn't know what to do, how to handle this situation. His second in command, someone he'd always thought was indestructible, as strong and emotionally tough as himself, was breaking down right in front of him. He had never seen Carter this traumatized, not even after
Jolinar died, leaving part of herself inside Carter.
Teal'c, though he knew Major Carter was most likely having trouble dealing with what had happened to her, had had no idea that she was having this much trouble. Not only had she seemed unable to come to terms with her abduction and attempted murder, she wasn't able to deal with the fact that O'Neill hadn't listened to her, trusted her feelings on the matter. She, apparently, still blamed him. This was not like Major Carter. As far as Teal'c knew, she never held a grudge against anyone in the years he had known her. He also knew, in his previous dealings with Major Carter and her emotions, that she needed support and a hug. She started to drop to his knees when DanielJackson beat him to it.
It only took a brief moment from the time Sam dropped to her knees to the time Daniel joined her on the floor, wrapping his arms around her. She pressed herself against him, her head buried against his broad chest, her arms clinging to him around his waist. Sam continued to cry for a while, Daniel rubbing her back in slow, gently strokes. When she stopped, she was exhausted from the emotional turmoil and fell asleep, still held tightly, safely, by Daniel.
"Daniel," Jack whispered, "What was that?" His face was one of worry and confusion mixed together, his brown eyes wet with unshed tears.
"I, too, do not completely understand Major Carter's behavior," Teal'c agreed with O'Neill, cocking his head and widening his eyes slightly in the Jaffa manner of confusion.
Daniel didn't answer right away. Instead, he moved Sam to one of the beds. Jack and Teal'c watched as Daniel deftly maneuvered Sam in his arms and stood up, carrying her to one of the beds in the room. Jack and Teal'c were both silently impressed with Daniel's show of strength.
Though Sam was a woman, and therefore of a slighter build than her male teammates, she was still a tall woman, and a muscular because of the nature of their job. It couldn't have been easy to lift her from a sitting position, but Daniel seemed to do it without any difficulty. A
thought popped into Jack's head, that Daniel must have had a lot of practice with picking Sam up and carrying her to bed, especially over the past three weeks. This thought saddened Jack, though he wasn't sure whether it was because Sam was so emotionally distraught over her experience on Krimm, or the fact that he had had no idea she was this upset.
Once Daniel had tucked the blankets around Sam, he motioned to Jack and Teal'c to follow him to the other side of the room, so they could speak without waking Sam. The three men sat down on the floor, Jack and Teal'c waiting for Daniel to talk.
"I've been waiting for this for the past three weeks," Daniel started. "You probably didn't know that Sam's been talking about leaving the military."
"How long?" Jack asked, completely thrown off guard.
Daniel took a deep breath. "Ever since I ascended. She wasn't dealing with my death very well, and had a long talk with General Hammond. She basically told him she wasn't sure she could keep on going. She blamed the military for her inability to deal with feelings about my death. She was scared she was turning into the emotional stand-off type of person that she had always hated about her father. Unable to hold it back anymore, she had an emotional outburst in the SGC. You two and Jonas were on a mission, and she had stayed behind to work on a project. After her outburst, Hammond suggested she see Dr. Mackenzie, at least for a while. She didn't take kindly to that, called it more military beaurocracy, figuring they thought it was easier to label her crazy than to face the fact that she may have a point about emotional detachment and military officers. Of course, Hammond and Mackenzie tried to reassure her that they didn't think she was crazy, but, in truth, they were really worried about her mental state."
"Like the alien at her house," Jack brought up, though he didn't need to. They remembered how hurt she had been when they had all jumped to the conclusion that she was crazy. "But, she had seemed to recover from that rather quickly."
Daniel nodded. "Only after she had it out with me one night a few days after Orlin died. Once we'd talked about it, once she stopped pretending that she was okay, stopped locking away her emotions, she was able to understand and deal with what happened to her and everything worked
"So, her outburst just now was...what? Her way of telling us how angry she is?" Jack asked.
"No," Daniel said slowly, thinking. "More like her mind's way of forcing her to face what's bothering her, to deal with what happened to her. Now that she's had her outburst, she'll be able to really talk and get over this."
"Will she?" Teal'c asked.
"Will she what?" Daniel asked.
"Talk," Jack answered for Teal'c.
"Yeeeeaaaah," Daniel said, stretching out the word. "But probably not here and with you. When she wakes up, she'll act like nothing is wrong, even act embarrassed over losing her emotional control. Just go along with it.
"I don't like this, Daniel," Jack informed the archeologist. "But I trust your judgment in this. You seem to know Carter's moods better than me. Besides, it's time to call Hammond and give him the 411 on what Carter found out."
Teal'c turned on the communications device and calibrated it to send a holographic image of the team to the SGC. As soon as the beam focused on the three male members of SG-1, they instantly saw General Hammond, and he saw a holographic representation of them. "SG-1, what's your status?" the general asked them. "Where's Major Carter?"
"Carter's not feeling too well, General. She's sleeping. But, she negotiated a deal with Zeus that you may want to consider, Sir," Jack told the general.
"I'm listening, Colonel," Hammond said.
"Sir, Zeus has agreed to give us access to Goa'uld shield technology in exchange for information on Anubis and his super soldiers."
Hammond was silent for a moment, thinking over the deal. "Do you think Zeus would keep his word if we agree to this?"
"I don't know, Sir."
"Sam believes he will," Daniel interrupted. "She's been right so far. Maybe we should follow her on this one."
"And what do you think, Doctor Jackson?"
Daniel frowned, not really sure what he thought. "I have my reservations, but I think we should go along with Sam."
"I, too, believe that the Goa'uld shield technology is worth the price of helping Zeus defeat Anubis," Teal'c voiced his opinion.
"Alright then. Make the deal," Hammond ordered them, tugging on his uniform.
"Yes Sir. We'll send another communication in two hours. O'Neill out."
Everything was going well. Sam was studying the Goa'uld shields and adapting Earth technology to hopefully produce a working prototype. Jack and Teal'c were trading information about Anubis with Zeus. And Daniel was going back and forth between the two projects, helping where he could. Where he had helped the most was in talking with Sam, getting her through her emotional breakdown. After she had lashed out at Jack on Zeus's ship, she had avoided eye contact with all three of them until they had returned to Earth. On their second night back, Sam had called Daniel in the middle of the night, asking him to come over. He had, not being able to deny her anything, and she had fully opened up to him, telling him everything she remembered, everything she thought, everything she felt about her kidnapping and attempted murder, and about how Jack had just brushed aside her feelings. Dealing with that had cleared
Sam's mind, allowing her to focus on the shield technology, and was almost ready to present a working prototype.
Teal'c entered Major Carter's lab and watched her work for a moment before announcing his presence. She was hard at work and didn't' even realize he was there. She was bent over one of her worktables, studying shield components under her magnifying glance.
"Major Carter. DanielJackson informed me that you require my assistance," Teal'c said to get her attention.
"Teal'c!" Sam cried, startled by her Jaffa friend's entrance. "Yeah, I do need your help." She stood up and motioned for Teal'c to follow her around the lab. "I can't quite seem to figure out how this part works, and Daniel couldn't really translate this part well."
As Teal'c helped Sam work on her shield prototype, he took the time to observe her. It seemed to him that Major Carter was much more controlled and collected than she had been on Zeus's ship. To his knowledge, she had not had any more emotional outbursts, and a brief confirmation from DanielJackson told him that she had discussed her emotions with him at great length. As Major Carter remarked on DanielJackson's translation of the Goa'uld shield technology manuals, he noticed she used terms such as "brilliant" and "no one else could have done better". She
talked about how smart he was, how she didn't know how they had gotten along without him for an entire year. Teal'c carefully observed her face as she spoke of the archeologist, seeing her blue eyes dancing with delight. Major Carter cares deeply for DanielJackson, Teal'c told himself. She may even love him. Of this I am certain.
On board Zeus's mothership, Daniel Jackson and Jack O'Neill were waiting for Zeus to appear to continue their discussion on Goa'uld System Lords. Neither had spoken to the other much in the past few weeks, ever since Sam nearly died on Krimm. They were each too preoccupied with
their own feelings on the matter and didn't want to deal with the other as well. Deep down, though Sam made it clear she didn't blame Jack anymore, Daniel still did, and he wasn't sure why. He knew he had this amazing capacity to forgive, one that both Sam and Jack had told him he had numerous times, and that they were envious of it. However, almost four weeks later, and Daniel still hadn't been able to fully forgive Jack for brushing aside Sam, and being indirectly responsible for her near death. Did he really care for Sam so deeply that he couldn't forgive anyone who hurt her, even one of his or her closest friends?
Jack was feeling a mixture of guilt and jealousy toward Daniel. Guilt because he did feel responsible for what had happened to Carter, and jealously because Daniel was so close to Carter. If Jack were truly honest with himself, he would tell himself he wanted to be the one Carter went to with the things that bothered her, and with her fears and secrets. But that was Daniel. It was always Daniel. And that tore at Jack something fierce. He was extremely jealous of Daniel's relationship with Carter, and that was why he'd been treating Daniel the way he had for the past few years, ordering him around, ignoring him, fighting with him over every teeny tiny issue that came up.
"Daniel," Jack said, interrupting Daniel's perusal of the information the SGC had allowed them to share with Zeus.
"Hm," Daniel acknowledged, still reading the documents in front of him.
"Daniel, how's Sam?"
The question startled Daniel and he abruptly looked up at Jack, pushing his glasses back upon his nose. Of all the things for Jack to ask him, that was the least likely, in Daniel's opinion. First, anyone who looked at Sam now would know that she was fine. And second, the one thing, throughout their friendship that they did not talk about with each other was Sam.
"She's fine," Daniel said in that long, drawn out way of his that means 'where are you going with this'.
"Good. That's good," Jack replied absently. "I, uh, just haven't talked to her in a while. Well, except for work, anyway."
"She's really excited about her force shield project," Daniel informed him.
Jack nodded and turned his gaze out of the small window. Daniel studied his friend for a moment, trying to get past that blank stare and down to what was really bothering Jack. "You want to talk about it?" he asked.
Jack turned away from the window slowly and faced Daniel. No, truthfully, he really didn't want to talk about it, but he knew that if they didn't get it all out in the open, SG-1 would fall apart. He rubbed his hand over his face and then ran his fingers through his gray hair.
"I'm sorry, you know," Jack said softly.
"About what?" Daniel prompted.
"About what happened to Carter. You're right, I should have listened."
Daniel shook his head. "It doesn't matter now. She's okay."
Jack took a deep breath. "I should have listened to you an Carter about a lot of things." He stopped talking and stood up. Daniel watched, waiting patiently as Jack paced around the room. He knew they had to have this conversation, and that it couldn't be rushed. Jack would tell
him everything in his own time and way. After a few minutes of silent pacing, Jack continued. "It's just, you two...You have this special bond. You always side with her and she always sides with you. I guess it just...well, gets to me sometimes. I just wish that sometimes she'd side with me."
Daniel nodded his head thoughtfully. No need to ask who 'she' was. It was obvious Jack was talking about Sam. "Jack," Daniel began gently. "It's not about taking sides. Sam's not siding with me because it's me. She's agreeing with me because she thinks it's right."
"So therefore I'm wrong?" Jack spit out into Daniel's face, suddenly becoming very angry.
"NO!" Daniel quickly tried to calm him. "Those were a poor choice of words. What I'm trying to say is that Sam and I have similar viewpoints, so it's natural that we'd express the same thoughts on an issue."
"And you can do things with her that I can't. Because you're not military and I'm he CO," Jack stated bitterly.
Daniel closed his eyes and sighed. So that's what this is about, he thought. Jack's jealous of my friendship with Sam. "She cares for you deeply, Jack," Daniel told his friend.
"But more for you," Jack threw back.
Daniel shrugged and pushed his glasses up again. For once he wished they'd just stay put. "I don't know about that."
They were silent again, Jack once again staring out the small window and Daniel watching him. When it seemed to Daniel that Jack was no longer going to speak on the issue, he returned to the information in his hand, trying to decide whether to tell Zeus how Anubis created his super
"Are you in love with her?" It was spoken so softly that at first Daniel didn't think it had been said at all. He looked over at Jack, and judging by his stance, Daniel realized that Jack had indeed asked that question out loud. And in that moment, Daniel knew, with one hundred
percent certainty, that Jack was in love with Sam. For a split second Daniel considered lying to Jack to make his friend feel better, but quickly disregarded that response. Lying would only hurt Jack in the long run, and perhaps himself and Sam as well. No, because Jack was in love with Sam he deserved an honest answer.
"Yes," Daniel said simply.
He watched as Jack's whole posture slumped, shoulders hunched forward, chin resting on chest. Minutes passed before Jack said anything in response. "For how long?"
"I don't really know."
"You mean you just woke up one morning and realized you were in love with your friend?" Jack asked equal parts skeptical and hurt.
"Yeah, pretty much," Daniel replied softly.
Jack joined Daniel at the table, sitting down next to the younger man, but not looking at him. He took a deep breath and delivered the most startling news Daniel had ever heard. "She's in love with you, too."
"Huh?" Daniel asked, taken completely by surprise. While he'd secretly hoped for a while now that Sam was in love with him, he had always thought she was in love with Jack.
"I'm not as blind to the emotional stuff as everyone thinks I am, or as I make myself out to be. I've picked up on things. You're always the one she goes to when things get rough. When you died, she told Teal'c that she didn't care what you were doing on that higher plane of
existence, how you could help us by being there. She just wanted you back with us. When she was sick with Nirrti's virus, she called out for you when she was near death. Not her father, and not me. You. She wanted you. When she was having trouble dealing with the memories of Jolinar and Martouf, she when to you. She went to you with the aftermath of Netu. She went to you with the aftermath of Orlin. Hell, I'd admitted to a room full of people that I cared more for her than I should during the zatarc thing. That was pretty much an admission of love from me, but she went to you. When she was forced to kill Martouf, she went to you. She looks for you first at every briefing, hoping the seat next to you isn't taken. She understands your coffee addiction better than anyone else. Just talking about you makes her smile. Daniel, you're the person she always goes to, the one person I don't think she can really live without. The year you were gone, she was here, but she wasn't, you know? When you came back to us, you two picked right up in your friendship where you'd left off, as if no time had passed and as if you had no memory loss. When we got that note saying you'd been kidnapped...I had to physically restrain her from charging off after you. I wouldn't even let her come with me to get you back. I thought that she'd just...I didn't think it was a good idea if she saw if they'd...hurt...you."
For his entire monolog, Jack had stared at his hands, clasped together and resting on the table. It hurt, admitting this to Daniel. As long as Daniel was clueless, nothing would happen between Daniel and Carter, and things wouldn't change between all of them. As long as Daniel didn't know, there was still a chance that his feelings for Carter would be reciprocated. Ever since Charlie died and he and Sarah had parted ways, he didn't think he'd ever find love and be happy again. Then Samantha Carter walked into hi life.
Before Daniel could say anything in return, Zeus walked into the room. "Sorry to have kept you waiting. There was an urgent matter concerning my son that needed my immediate attention." He took a seat across from the two members of SG-1. "So, what can you tell me about Anubis's
The attack came in the middle of the night, hundreds of small motherships, motherships belonging to Anubis, swarming around Zeus's ship. Through equal parts stealth and luck, Anubis's army boarded Zeus's ship and killed most of his Jaffa before Zeus could muster some kind of resistance. Most died silently, shot with staff weapons or stabbed in their sleep. Anubis himself personally killed Zeus by snapping Zeus's neck, killing both the host and the symbiote instantly. He made sure Zeus was awake, staring eye to eye as he grabbed Zeus's head and twisted quickly, the crack of the spine breaking echoing through the room.
Both Jack O'Neill and Daniel Jackson had been sleeping soundly, Jack snoring very loudly, when they were jolted awake by two of Zeus's Jaffa. Instantly, Jack was on his feet, gathering all his weapons, used to these sudden awakenings as a soldier. Daniel, not as used to them as
Jack, rolled over and tried to swat the Jaffa away sleepily.
"Daniel," Jack whispered loudly, poking the sleeping archeologist hard in the ribs. "Daniel, get up. We're under attack."
"Wha?" Daniel mumbled. "Huh?"
"Daniel!" Jack cried, losing patience. "GET UP! Anubis is attacking us and you are sleeping through it!"
Something of what Jack said must have registered in Daniel's sleep-clouded brain for he sat up and swung his legs over the side of the bed, rubbing his eyes. "Anubis?" he asked sleepily, reaching for his glasses on the table next to his bed. "What's he doing here?'
"ATTACKING!" Jack practically shouted at the top of his lungs. He angrily shoved Daniel's gun and boots at him. "Get up and get ready." With that, Jack followed the Jaffa to the door and peeked outside the sleeping chamber. No one was in the hall. Yet.
Daniel joined them shortly, and the four made their way out of the sleeping chamber and down a deserted hallway. Jack led, Daniel right behind him, the two Jaffa following silently, ordered by Zeus to protect the members of SG-1 at all costs. It wasn't long before those orders were
put to the test.
Not long after leaving the sleeping chamber, rounding a corner, Jack, Daniel, and the two Jaffa encountered one of Anubis's boarding parties, consisting of about twenty armed Jaffa and two super soldiers. Jack jumped back behind the corner, dragging Daniel with him. Carter would
never forgive him if he didn't bring Daniel back alive. Kneeling down he poked his head and zat gun around the corner and fired off a few quick shots, stunning two Jaffa. He quickly pulled his head back to avoid being blasted by the super soldiers. Staff blasts kept hitting the wall to his left. There was no way they could continue down this hall, or turn the corner and go through Anubis's men. Jack was about to suggest they go back the way they came when he heard staff blasts coming from his right as well. Glancing over at his two Jaffa protectors he saw them engaged with some Jaffa form Anubis's army. Seeing only one option, he grabbed Daniel and leaned into him, so his friend could hear him over all this noise. "You're going to run across that opening while I cover you," he said, pointing down the hallway. "When you're in position, you cover me and I'll follow you." Without waiting to hear Daniel's reply, Jack turned and began firing down the hallway. "Now, Daniel!"
Daniel ran as if the devil were after him, which was almost true. The open space he was crossing, in full view of Anubis's soldiers, was not very large, but when one fears for his life and is being shot at by more than twenty armed soldiers, that distance seems very great indeed. I'm not going to make it, I'm not going to make it, ran through Daniel's head as he charged to safety. Energy discharges from numerous staff weapons hit the wall behind him and in front of him. Knowing me, I'll run right into one of those blasts. What a stupid way to die, he thought, running as fast as he could. The noise was deafening, Daniel could barely hear himself think. He was aware that Jack was shouting something at him, and he concentrated as hard as he could to hear it, but it was nearly impossible over the noise from the staff weapons and Jack's automatic. I'm not going to make it, he realized with certainty. I'm not
going to make it. Then a picture of Sam jumped into his mind. She was crying, sobbing over losing him again. I can't do that to her again, he thought to himself. She'll never recover. With Sam on his mind, a happy Sam. One who was looking at him with love in her eyes, Daniel dove for the safety of the other side, tucking his body together just as he was about to hit the hard, metal floor, and performed a perfect summersault. He rose up onto one knee, turned around, faced down the corridor at the enemy, and began firing, giving Jack a hopefully safe pathway across.
Jack joined Daniel a few moments later, and the two took off down the corridor, not bothering to wait for Zeus's two Jaffa. They had gone back the way they had come, trying to push back more of Anubis's army. The two members of SG-1 raced as fast as they could, hoping to put enough distance between themselves and those they had just been fighting. Jack wanted to slow down, to gain back stealth, but that was not an option. He and Daniel could hear pursuit very close behind them. Still running, Jack blasted two Jaffa coming from ahead of them out of their way, but to no avail. Many more were behind those. They were trapped.
"Maybe if we surrender we can stay alive long enough to escape?" Daniel suggested lamely, shrugging his shoulders. Jack shot him a withering look, but nodded his head. He placed his gun down on the floor and raised his hands above his head, Daniel following suit.
"We surrender!" Daniel shouted out in Goa'uld.
"Let's hope they want us alive," Jack said under his breath.
They were late checking in. Very late. Days late. Sam paced in the conference room, back and forth, back and forth, staring at the floor, biting her bottom lip, and picking her cuticles. She glanced up as Teal'c entered the room, silently asking with her eyes if there was any
communication at all. He shook his head. Sam returned her gaze to the floor and continued her pacing. Where are they? Why haven't they checked in? she asked herself. She was worried, more worried that she had ever been over missing team members before. Is this because I have
feelings for Daniel? Am I more worried now than eve before because I know what I'd be losing if something were to happen to him?
Another twenty minutes passed in which Sam continued her pacing, and Teal'c watched her, worrying in his own way. Then the Stargate began to spin and Simmons's voice announcing an incoming wormhole startled both of them. Sam glanced hopefully at Teal'c and took off down the stairs to the control room. Teal'c, just as hopeful, but less inclined to show it, followed at a more sedate pace. Sam came to an abrupt stop beside General Hammond, bumping into him gently, but not even noticing it. "Is it them?" she questioned.
"Receiving IDC code...it's the Tok'ra," Simmons informed his superiors.
Sam couldn't hide her disappointment. She closed her eyes and sighed deeply, shaking her head. Teal'c placed a hand on her shoulder and squeezed it gently. Sam placed one of her hands over his in thanks.
"Open the iris," Hammond ordered, glancing at the two remaining members of SG-1 out of the corner of his eye. Teal'c stood there, stoic, trying to offer some kind of comfort to Carter. She, on the other hand, looked terrible. Dark circles under her eyes, bleeding cuticles,
disheveled hair. She probably hadn't slept in days, not since O'Neill and Dr. Jackson last checked in. "Let's go meet our friends, shall we?" The two remaining members of SG-1 followed Hammond out of the control room and down into the Gateroom, awaiting their visitors.
Jacob Carter, flanked by two more Tok'ra, make his way down the ramp leading from the Stargate, an anguished look on his face. "George, Sam, Teal'c. I'm afraid I have some bad news," he prefaced his conversation.
"Nice to see you too, Dad," Sam said pointedly.
"You're right, of course, Kid," Jacob acquiesced, chastised. He gave his daughter a big hug, then said, "We should talk."
"Dad, do you know something about the colonel and Daniel?" Sam asked half in hope and half in fear.
"We should talk," Jacob repeated.
"Dad, what do you know!" Sam insisted, more afraid now than anything. If it had been good news, her father would already have told them. He would not be hesitant about telling them unless the news was not good.
Jacob sighed. He knew that look in his daughter's eyes. She was determined to know the truth, and to know it now. He hated to be the one to break the news to her; he knew how deeply she cared for Jack and Daniel, especially Daniel. She'd already lost so many people in her life; he didn't think she could take much more. Jacob remembered what she had been like when Daniel had died-slash-ascended nearly two years ago. There was no way Sam would be able to get through losing Daniel again. He hated to be one to tell her that she may have to.
"Zeus's ship was attacked by Anubis and his army. Our operative in Anubis's army informed us that Zeus was betrayed by one of his own allies and was killed. Jack and Daniel were captured. We don't know if they're still alive." Jacob watched as his daughter closed her eyes and
began to sway, looking like she was going to lose her balance and fall. "Sam?" he said gently, reaching out and gently grabbing her arm. "You okay?"
"They have to be alive," she said so softly that the others had to strain to hear her. "They just have to be."
"I concur with Major Carter. Anubis would not kill O'Neill and DanielJackson so quickly. He will interrogate them in hopes of obtaining information of this facility."
"Sir," Sam said confidently, steadier now and banishing all emotion. "We must go and rescue the colonel and Daniel."
Hammond pressed his lips together tightly. "Major that may not be possible." He was all set to deny her a rescue mission when he saw the look of hope on her face, the tears in her blue eyes. Desperation radiated from her. Hammond knew in that instant, that if it proved possible
to rescue Colonel O'Neill and Doctor Jackson, Major Carter would do it. There was no doubt about it in his mind. And, since he was just as worried as everyone else about the two missing members of his favorite team, he was willing to give in to a little emotion. "But I believe we
"We will help," Jacob informed them. "Because of our operative, we know where Anubis is at all times."
"Major Carter, you and Teal'c are to work with the Tok'ra to rescue Colonel O'Neill and Doctor Jackson. You have a goal."
Relief washed over Sam. For a moment, she had believed that General Hammond was not going to allow them to attempt a rescue. "Thank you, Sir."
Hammond nodded. "Bring them home, Major."