“Hey, while you’re up, can you open his second drawer and get me the Rolaids. They’re behind the insanely huge bottle of Advil,” Adrienne requested, her head resting pitifully on her desk. Making a face, Jonas set the stack of files gently onto Daniel’s desk, kneeling at the drawers, opening the second as requested. He rummaged through, pulling out a large plastic medicine bottle, the label covered in masking tape with Adrienne’s careful script written on the label.
“More than three and I kick your ass?” Jonas read, cutting his eyes at Adrienne.
“It used to say something nice and sweet about my concern for his well-being, but then we got together. Didn’t need the nice act anymore,” the cajun tried to joke from her desk, groaning as she laughed.
“We could stop ordering Mexican,” Jonas offered, feeling weird digging through Daniel’s drawer but he really didn’t want to have to call down to Carolyn Lam, again, and explain, again, that Adrienne had managed to make herself sick, again.
“Never,” she muttered from her keys, throwing her finger up dramatically to the sky. Shaking his head, Jonas rummaged through, his fingers hitting another plastic bottle, equally as large as the Advil bottle, pulling it out into the open.
“Don’t tell him I let you see that,” Adrienne requested, lifting her head and opening her hands to catch the flying bottle of instant relief, “he has this thing about indigestion being a sign of getting old. I told him it is a sign of eating like shit.” Laughing, Jonas tossed the bottle over to Adrienne, who caught it clumsily, popping open the lid.
“Oh, I forgot to tell you, the brownies came back last night,” Adrienne said, shaking a handful of tablets into her palm.
“Brownies?” Jonas questioned, carefully fixing the area and gathering his things before returning to his own desk.
“Yeah, I’m calling them brownies, like in Willow, they came back to borrow my iPod of all things. I can’t WAIT to harass the hell out of Indy when he gets back. You don’t even know how long it took for me to get him to even look at an iPad, I was shocked when he swiped that last week, but the iPod?” Adrienne continued. She paused to stop her laughing, holding her now large, twenty one week large, protruding belly.
“Damn mini-Jackson,” she added, chewing the pills in her hand.
“Willow?” Jonas asked, confused further, as was becoming customary this second time on Earth. The first time had been under equally as horrible circumstances and while he had learned a lot about life on Earth, there really hadn’t been anyone interested in teaching him much about the culture of this place. Adrienne, on the other hand, was happily treating him as a pallet, to mold and shape into her own person pop culture encyclopedia, which, considering everything, was kinda fun.
“Yes, mid 1980’s fantasy film. Dwarf, quest, baby, magic, Val Kilmer?” she tried, thinking that might spark something, but Jonas shook his head.
“Never heard of it,” he answered, taking a seat at his desk.
“Tonight, tonight we watch. My place. I’ll cook something, and not Mexican. Anyway, the Brownies are in the movie, littler in the movie, but same idea. Oh! That reminds me, Brownies, it’s Girl Scout cookie season, I wonder if anyone has got a girl scout around here...” Adrienne rambled as sirens sounded around them, making her roll her eyes and reach for her headphones.
“I have no idea why we’re still sending teams out, Daniel has yet to send back any information,” Adrienne grumbled, rolling her eyes, knowing it was Woolsey’s doing, and, well partially hers, but mostly Woolsey. She was still enjoying Sam punching the alter-Woolsey square in the nose and was deeply saddened that her friend could not repeat the process now that they were back home.
“I think it just makes everyone feel useful, and who knows? We could actually find something,” Jonas began to answer, the phone at Adrienne’s desk interrupting his thought. Sighing, she held a finger to pause him, grabbing the aged white receiver and tucking it under her ear.
“Archaeology, this is Adrienne Jackson,” she said, still, four weeks into her marriage, glowing like it was still their wedding day.
“Addy, it’s Sam. I think you might want to come down here...” her voice was happy, excited, even, telling Adrienne without words what she had been waiting to hear for three weeks.
Slamming the phone into the base, Adrienne leapt from her seat, racing for the door the best she could, staggering slightly from the weight of her middle. She was about to cross through the threshold of the doorway when she stopped short, peeking back over her shoulder at Jonas.
“Raincheck on Willow shug, k?” she spat out, turning to jog quickly to the gate room.
The difference in her appearance was more than he expected when he saw her dart around the corner, in yoga pants and her black uniform t-shirt, her larger belly bulging. Given that she should be annoyed by her changing body, he was surprised to see her so happy, racing towards him, reaching out her arms, disregarding completely the people around her.
There he was, not that she had any fear that he wouldn’t return, but after weeks in bed alone, missing his warmth, his touch, his voice, Adrienne didn’t care about anything other than verifying that it was her husband marching down the ramp. She pushed past a few gate room personnel, their eyes making contact, and seeing his bright smile, his breathtaking eyes twinkling behind his glasses, made her jog even faster.
His foot hit the floor the moment Adrienne made it to his arms, but he didn’t waste time hugging her, reaching for her face with his free hand and bringing their lips together, kissing her slowly and passionately right at the base of the ramp. She’d been eating Mexican, the salsa still spicy against her lips, but he didn’t care, he didn’t want to stop, letting his tongue explore her mouth as if they were completely alone.
She was taken aback as he began to kiss her, well, like that, in front of everyone, but between the hormones raging through her body and the fact she hadn’t felt the smoothness of his lips against her own in what seemed like an eternity, most of the time they had been married at this point, Adrienne wrapped her arms around his shoulders, kissing him as passionately in return.
“Hey, Daniel, good to see you, ya think you can cool it with the little woman here until we chat for a bit,” Daniel heard Jack speak, from behind Adrienne it sounded, breaking his concentration for only a moment, but not his kiss, extending the iPad in his hand over Adrienne’s shoulder to Jack. Feeling his second hand free, Jack still muttering something about making out in the gate room, Daniel placed the other hand behind Adrienne’s neck, pulling her into a deeper kiss.
“Normally I would send you two to your quarters, but there is a lot of shit on here that I can’t read, so would the two of you mind stopping until a least after the briefing,” Jack requested, his soft brown eyes trying to make sense of the mess of icons on the screen, his own wife approaching out of the corner of his eye.
“Um, guys,” Sam said, clearing her throat, her own face flushing at the scene in front of her, “not here...” Sighing, Daniel pulled away, both from her lips and her embrace, finally letting his eyes gaze upward at his friends.
“Everything’s on the iPad, everything, but, Sam, Jack, there is just, there is no way that we could,” Daniel started, excitement beaming in his eyes, “can I have a few hours, get settled, try to process this, all of this, but Jack, this isn’t just a guide to ZPMs, and there are hundreds of them, well there could be hundreds of them, we still need to look, but there is so much more, I just don’t even know where to start -” he stammered until there were soft fingers at his lips, his wife, his beautiful perfect wife, silencing him.
“Calm down Indy, take a breath,” Adrienne whispered, turning to wrap her arm around his waist. Smiling, he did as she asked, breathing in deeply, his brain still trying to process everything that had happened to him in the past twenty or so days. Sam peered over at Jack, glancing at the clock on the wall and back to her friends.
“I think we can give you a few hours, let me call Woolsey, the team,” Sam offered, Daniel shaking his head emphatically, reaching to take the device from Jack.
“Perfect, that will give Adrienne time to get some of this data onto slides and let me figure out how to begin to explain all of this to you because Sam, I just don’t even know where to start, how to tell you what I have seen, Ad I wish you could have been there, some of the places they took me, it was like nothing,” he started again, Adrienne laughing, shaking her head.
“Calm sha, you can tell me all about it. Let’s head back down to the lab and see what you have, ok?” she suggested, grabbing his arm and leading him out into the hallway. Jack, however, lingered back with Sam, frowning as the two of them walked hand and hand, happily, out of the gate room.
“What in the hell happened to him?” Jack grumbled, reaching into his pocket for his phone to start informing his department of Daniel’s return. Laughing, Sam squeezed his arm lightly before dashing up the stairs to call Woolsey.
“Ja-wer, it was amazing. It was so much more than just time jumping, they have a complete catalog system, like a flow chart through time, past, present, future, and there are limitless possibilities. They wouldn’t let me see any futures though, said that was against their rules, but the past. Adrienne, they took me to planets, to parts of Earth, Ad, I SAW with my own eyes a Hebrew man construct bricks for the Great Pyramid,” Daniel started in as soon as they were in the hallway, letting go of her hand to walk backward as he talked.
“Kinda like the Observers in Fringe,” she clarified, smiling, having missed this most of all; she could listen to him ramble on like this forever.
“Yea, very similar actually,” he answered, pausing in the hallway to grab her hand, “just like another one of your silly TV shows. I missed you so bad,” he said quietly, pulling her into his arms.
“Ya not alone,” she said in return, hugging him the best she could, the child inside leaping with delight as if he too understood that his dad was home.
“Oh wow,” Daniel exclaimed, pulling back from her, reaching his hands for her stomach, “that was hard.” He held his hand there longer, feeling the moments of the small human while Adrienne scowled at him, rolling her eyes.
“Uh huh, just keep that in mind. I’m feeling that on the INSIDE and these past couple of weeks I’m starving round the clock,” she added, crossing her arms.
“Good boy, teach her about real eating,” he joked, Adrienne reaching for his hand, leading him on to the lab.
“No worries, it’s healthy, mostly, and I’m feeding him. I just haven’t ever been this hungry, including the marathon training,” she said, relishing the feeling of this fingers intertwined with her own. As excited as he was to share all of this information, he really was, there was a small part of him that just wanted to take her home, make them both some hot chocolate, crawl into bed and just talk, cuddle, tell one another every little detail of the past three weeks.
“Indy, ya in there?” she asked, shaking his arm and waving to someone behind him, someone who sounded happy to see him as well.
“Welcome back!” Jonas Quinn was shouting down the hall, Daniel turning to face him, clasping his hand in greeting.
“Worth the trip?” the Langaran asked, noting the excited expression on Daniel’s face.
“More than you can imagine, Adrienne and I were just heading to go through some things before I present to everyone, Sam’s gonna call down in a few hours,” he answered, shaking the iPad in front of himself, peeking back at Adrienne.
“Look Jonas, it’s a miracle, Daniel can use modern Earth technology,” Adrienne teased, snatching the iPad from her husband’s hand.
“Little does she know that I had them take that just to mess with her,” Daniel retorted, grabbing the gadget back and powering onto the lab, “you two coming? We have about three hours, tops, and I’d rather brief two people I trust before I have to try to convince a room of bureaucratic morons to let me do my job.”
“I mean, I know where we should start but, even at that, where do we start?” Jonas asked, sitting on the center table beside Adrienne, gazing at the Smartboard screen ahead.
“I think that taking this first list here and working out the pictures I have taken, constellations, flora and fauna, cross referencing that with the Asgard databases should give us some kind of idea, at least give us a list of planets we can gate to and planets we have to take a ship to,” Daniel explained, reaching behind to shut off the white display area.
“It’s a gah damn shame dat dey didn’t use da gates,” Adrienne noted, slipping slightly in her speech, Daniel refraining from teasing.
“Yah dat’s righ Ah-dee, damn shame dey done did dem like dat,” Jonas replied in his stead though, Adrienne promptly flashing him the finger. Good to know, Jonas had kept her on her toes while he was gone. Laughing, Daniel stepped over to the projector, unhooking the iPad, walking it over to his wife.
“I think the way we’ve got it organized right now makes the most sense. Ad, do you think we could run off some paper copies and Jonas, could you head down and see about a projector, some coffee and anything else you can think of. This might be a long meeting,” Daniel requested of his staff, weird to have a staff now, getting a nod on both accounts.
“Got it sha,” Adrienne answered quickly, taking the gadget over to her laptop.
“Alright and I’ll go ahead and get a list of who’s coming, try to make sure we have the entire team, at least one member of the Atlantis crew, I’m guessing you want John, maybe Rodney as well, get everything started on that end,” Jonas stood from the table, listing as he walked over to his desk. Daniel would have never thought it before, but a staff like this, his brilliant wife and his equally as intelligent friend, that was a staff he could live with. Tasks assigned, they sprung into action, Adrienne at the printer, Joas darting out of the lab, Daniel finally making it over to his computer to upload the information to his hard drive before the meeting.
Computer now transferring, Daniel glanced over his shoulder, to tell Adrienne that he was hungry, they should probably get something to eat before the briefing when it hit him, exactly how long they had been apart. Other than the kiss in the gate room, he hadn’t touched her, kissed her, been close to her in weeks and meeting or not, he just couldn’t take it anymore. Grabbing the remote at his desk he clicked off the security cameras, walking carefully over to the door to lock it tightly.
“What are ya doing sha?” she asked, turning to face him, bewilderment in her expression as she stood at the printer running off the copies.
“Come here,” he whispered, reaching out his arms to take her into them. Smiling, confused, she let the machine run its own process, tiptoeing over to him to heed his request. Without another word, he leaned in, kissing her lips softly as she slipped into his embrace, moving them carefully over to the center table, pushing her back against the furniture.
“I need to return this,” he whispered, pulling away slightly, handing her over her music player.
“iPod AND iPad. I’m so turned on right now...” she teased, slyly.
“What can I say, I missed horrible music in my life,” he taunted, reaching his lips to hers again, kissing there softy and then slowly across her face.
“Daniel,” Adrienne protested without really protesting, her fingers already lightly toying at his belt, pulling the end through the loop as his lips worked their way down her neck. Slowly, tenderly, he worked his lips back up, lingering only enough to peek over her shoulder at the clock seeing that Jonas would be back soon to get them for the briefing. He hated to rush, but he couldn’t wait, he needed her and by the way her hands were now roaming inside of his pants, she couldn’t wait either. He felt her grab him, running her hands up and down urgently, hardening what little hadn’t already been anticipating her gentle touch. Sighing, his body a flurry of emotion, Daniel reached gently for her hips, urging her back onto the table.
“Didn’t this get us into trouble once before?” she asked, teasing, pushing his pants to his ankles as she adjusted herself onto the table.
“Well, we weren’t married before, and we left the cameras on,” he replied, his thumbs in the waistband of her yoga pants, yanking those to the floor was well. He didn’t allow her to reply, although the mischievous grin across her face was enough, grabbing her hips and pulling her forward so he could slip into her warmth. The feeling hit him, the wave, as soon as he had pushed his way into her fully, making him groan out in pleasure, getting a light squeeze in return. He peered at the clock again, worried, feeling her pull closer to him, clenching herself around him.
“We’ve got time, trust me, and I’ve been staring at that loincloth for weeks,” she teased, squeezing him inside of her again. Nodding, both aroused and worried, Daniel felt a hand at his chin, turning his face, making him focus on her again, his hips already complying while his brain was registering. He laughed at how ridiculous he was being, he’d missed her, missed being so close and so intimate with her that it didn’t take his thoughts long to catch up, pulling her as close as he could pull himself to her, thrusting in forcefully. Moaning lightly, he slowed down for a moment just to make sure that she was alright, a tiny part of him still worrying about hurting her in her condition, but she was reaching for his hips, her fingers desperately grasping his upper thigh urging him on.
That was all the encouragement he needed, that and her feet locking behind the back of his knees, demanding him deep inside of her, so he thrust frantically, reaching to hold her with one arm and the table with another. She curled forward the best she could to bury her face into his shoulder, moaning, whispering his name into his ear, groaning, begging him to push harder which he did to the best of his ability. Squeezing him so tightly inside her body, the friction was fantastic, reminding him very quickly what he had missed in his weeks of absence, sending him to his edge. He felt her pull away slightly, angling her pelvis higher and thought for a brief moment that he was hurting her, but he noticed her shift, the angle of her back, that she was arching for friction on her own. He let go of the table, reaching his fingers between them, searching for her own hardness, finding it, flicking it lightly, feeling her teeth against the fabric of his t-shirt. She clenched him tighter, so he rubbed her faster, trying to maintain his touch and his thrust at the same time. He moved in and out of her, a steady rhythm now, feeling the build down low, the climb.
“Ad,” he panted out, trying to tell her, hoping that she was close as well since he was unsure if he could control his end.
“Um hmm,” she gasped back, her eyes closed tightly, her lip trembling like it would, holding him impossibly close to her. Knowing she was at her edge, he rubbed her faster, letting himself relax and spill out inside of her, thrusting madly. He bit his lip, trying not to shout out like being with her made him do, and felt a throb of pain, possibly biting down too hard. She relaxed in his arms, pecking lightly at his neck, whispering lightly in his ear.
“I love you, I missed you so badly. I missed everything. I knew you’d be back, but I thought that you wouldn’t...” she started, her quiet murmurs turning into soft crying, tears dampening his shirt. He paused for a moment, surprised, wondering what he had done wrong or if he had hurt her.
“Adrienne what are you talking about? Ja-wer, why are you crying?” he asked, pushing her away, dropping to the floor to get her pants, dressing her again gently. Sucking in tears, Adrienne slipped from the table, taking them from him and pulling her own bottoms up.
“I was afraid that when you came back that you would see how much bigger I had gotten, and,” she started, the tears flowing again, Daniel reaching quickly for his own pants, fastening them before taking her into his arms, holding her close.
“And what Ad? Stop crying, I’m back, everything’s alright, I’m back and you’re fine and the baby’s fine,” Daniel assured, Adrienne shaking her head as more tears fell.
“I thought you wouldn’t think I was pretty anymore,” she sobbed, “that you wouldn’t want to make love to me anymore.”
“Of course not,” Daniel replied instantly, realizing that this was probably a result of the hormones, holding her closer, “in fact my first thought when you came through the door to the gate room was how beautiful you looked racing in.”
“Really?” she asked, pulling back, her eyes puffy. Poor Adrienne, he thought, threw up most of the first trimester that they knew about, well into the second and here they were, not even into her third trimester yet and she was an emotional wreck. He needed to make a note to pop down to see Carolyn, see if there was anything he could do to make it easier for her on his end.
“Yes really. That’s my son too, it’s not like you went and starting downing junk food and became some gross monster that didn’t care about herself anymore. You’re carrying my son, you’re making a huge sacrifice for Narmer and for me. How could I ever let that change my opinion of you, at least in a negative way?” he answered honestly, Adrienne leaping up into his arms, throwing her own around his neck.
“I love you Daniel, I love you so much. I’m sorry, I’m such a mess, I’m happy one minute, sad the next and ready to punch some one right after,” she apologized, pulling away.
“Good, I’ll keep that last one in mind during the briefing in case Woolsey says anything stupid. You can punch him and I’ll just blame it on hormones,” he joked, making her laugh, her smile causing him to feel better already. Note to self, she is now possibly going to cry after sex, act accordingly. He started to walk back to his desk, realizing he needed to also visit he restroom or maybe their quarters before the briefing when he felt a grab at his arm.
“I’m not opposed to famous Egyptologists or even a pharaoh's name, but no Narmer and no Edward. The first sounds like Garfield’s annoying neighbor and the latter reminds me of sparkly vampires.”
Jonas wasn’t kidding, not only was Woolsey there, along with Senator Bennett who Daniel wasn’t even aware was poking his nose around anymore, but Jack, Sam, John Sheppard, Dr. Rodney McKay, Vala, Cam, Teal’c, Dr. Radek Zalenka, and even Walter.
He had to give the Langaran credit, he was sure as hell thorough.
“I’d like to thank everyone for coming and especially thanks to Adrienne and Jonas for holding down the fort while I was gone,” he smiled over at his wife and friend, knowing that the collective of people here, other than Sam, really didn’t care about thanking them, but he wanted to say something anyway. Taking a sip of coffee, Daniel nodded for Adrienne to cut the lights and cue up the slides, mentally preparing himself for the massive amount of knowledge that he was about to dump onto his friends and colleagues.
“I guess we should start with the Furlings, which, I’m sure everyone is aware now, are not ‘furry’ at all, but are rather named such by the Ancients, the Alterans, deriving from their word fur, which as it does in Latin, means to steal. Instead, they refer to themselves at the Ktaenam,” Daniel began to present, a collage of pictures displayed on the screen of the Ktaenam cities and people. They were small, each and everyone of them, suddenly reminding Adrienne that she really needed to have Jonas over to show him that movie. The Ktaenam really looked like brownies or elves, so petite in stature, perfectly proportioned humanoids on a lesser scale. Adrienne was about to scribble a note to Jonas, telling him that she would loan him the film to take home when she noticed her husband looking straight at her. Apparently, he wanted her to speak at this as well, so she stood from her position leaning against the wall, clearing her throat to address the group.
“It appears that their language, or what we know of it so far, has some sort of relation to ancient Hebrew, maybe even making the Ktaenam the dwarves Moses warned against in Leviticus,” Adrienne added, changing the slide to a picture of her NSRV bible page, the passage highlighted.
“Leviticus seems to be nothing but trouble for us,” Cam noted, raising his eyebrows at Adrienne as she smiled, changing the slide.
“Daniel was able to confirm only that there had been some minimal contact with the planet we had visited, uh, let me pull that number again,” Adrienne started to answer, fumbling with her smaller iPod, but Daniel was already shaking his head.
“It’s fine ja-wer, we can look it up later, can I get the next slide,” he requested, and she nodded, cursing her pregnancy brain for making her forget a detail that she would normally remember.
“Now, it seems that the Furlings or Ktaenam, whichever you prefer, they don’t seem to mind either, were the first of the great races to go into hiding once the Alterans were split prior to the creation of the Ori faction. There were signs according to Medan, their leader, signs that the Ori were going to split off and just as the Alterans built the Ark for Defense, the Ktaenam took it upon themselves to borrow a few things they felt needed to be kept out of a possible war, among those things being ZPMs,” Daniel continued, another image popping up on the screen, an image of a battle, women charging onward toward a group of men, women dressed in torn modified chitons, a glow behind. Adrienne recognized them as Amazons, letting her eyes wander around the room as she slowly changed the slides on Daniel’s cue. The next image, a Japanese-like society by the looks of it, a ZPM carefully hidden behind the form of some god, followed by another Viking society, a group of chatting Celtic priests, Australian aboriginals, Cavemen, a world full of people with pink skin, world after world after world. The room was dead silent in shock, just as his wife had been when he showed her and Jonas the pictures. It was essentially another Asgard database, another impossible task set before them.
“Dr. Jackson,” Woolsey finally interrupted, “are you telling me that these are all ZPMs? Every glowing, well, thing in these pictures? All we have to do is go and get them?” he asked, and to be honest Daniel couldn’t blame him. It was a logical assumption, one he had made himself as he watched a group of cat like people paw at the lights as if they had no idea what was sitting right in front of them. Sighing, Daniel peered over at Adrienne, at his rock, for support, feeling the backlash that was coming in advance.
“Not exactly,” he answered, nodding for the next slide to advance, the crude chart he and Adrienne had created popping up onto the screen. Scanning it carefully, Sam sat forward, making quick notes, nudging her own spouse with her elbow.
“To the best of my determination, it seems that the ZPMs I have been shown can be divided into four major categories based on how they were removed from their original Alteran home and how they have been kept, for lack of a better word. Category one are the borrowed modules, the ones taken by the Ktaenam. Due to the rules of their time bending I was allowed to see when they first placed the devices in hiding and where, but we were not allowed to return to the same places in the present time line. Medan says that to do so, in their presence at least, would effectively end the borrowing and send the device back to where it had been when it was taken from the Alterans. For these planets I photographed and cataloged the best I could, especially planets with gates, but there are some that are reachable only by starship,” he explained, his finger running down the first column, including a list of about 14 planets.
“That’s a good dozen Daniel,” Sam noted, also counting, “and they all had ZPMs at some point. ZPMs that were not being utilized?”
“That we know of, but some of these were placed over a thousand years ago, so we have no way of knowing what condition they’re in,” he answered, moving on to the second column.
“This group here, a list of similar length, represent the ZPMs that were found by the Goa’ould, and in some cases used to power sarcophagi. These are the ones that Ktaenam knew had been taken by the Goa’ould,” he added, a forced smile on his face.
“DanielJackson, some of the Jaffa were less disciplined once they had overthrown their masters. Between the rebellion and the Taur’i war with the Goa’ould, there is a chance that many of those ZPMs have been destroyed,” Teal’c offered, his face looking almost embarrassed at what his comrades might have done, albeit unknowingly.
“I hadn’t discounted that either, but nonetheless I’m recommending that we get this information to the council as soon as possible in case they have come across anything that they have not already told us about or, based on some of what I have seen, something that they were unclear as to it’s purpose,” he replied, making Adrienne smile.
Yeah, miss him didn’t really cover it, he was just so intelligent, so well spoken, so, perfect.
Damn stupid hormones, she cursed her body, turning me into a mush mess of a woman.
“How fares our alliance with the Jaffa council?” the senator inquired, directing his question more to Teal’c than the others, who shook his head slowly, his eyes looking to his friends for support.
“There is a divide in the council, and some Jaffa have chosen to leave,” Teal’c admitted, his words careful, his gaze at Sam and Jack as if there was something that the archaeology department had either not been privy to or Daniel had missed in his absence, but either way, he decided he needed to ask later.
“So, there’s a chance? Maybe me, T, Dex can start making some visits, ask around, drag Bra’tac and Ishta with us? See what we can find?” John suggested carefully, again everyone deferring to Sam. What had Daniel missed? Adrienne had yet to mention anything, but then again they’d spent their alone time together enjoying one another’s physical company.
Damn Adrienne heightened libido.
“Yes,” Daniel responded, refocusing on the question and his wife’s eyes, trying to send him some signal that they needed to talk and she must have chosen to wait until they got home for a reason, “and I think a separate mission is needed, one in which we also enlist Vala’s spies to see if any of the rebelling Jaffa have sold ZPMs or other suggested technologies on the black market.” Raising her eyebrows, Vala sat back, Daniel could tell that she was already running scenarios and contacts through her head. The senator was making notes now, frowning, glaring over at Woolsey, making Daniel almost want to stop the presentation altogether but Adrienne was staring right at him, her dark cajun eyes urging him on.
“That brings me to the third grouping, which is really what we’ve already been working on, the Asgard protected planets. They really didn’t have that much more insight than we already have in the database, but Medan was able to confirm that we have been on the right tracking looking into the mythology of the cultures, that was how the Asgard preferred to hide technology,” Daniel continued, showing a long, much longer list, seemingly as long as the lists of planets in the database itself.
“But Daniel, you have been able to narrow down our list, considerably, correct?” Jonas clarified, seeing the expressions on everyone’s faces, reading their minds, that Daniel had been gone for three weeks and returned with nothing but another set of longer lists.
“Yes, this allows us to skip around the database more, narrow things down a bit, hopefully speed up our research. Then we have the last section,” he started before he could get another question, namely from senator or Woolsey, the latter appearing quite nervous, “The last group would be the ones that remained with the Alterans. There is really only one way to get those, we would need to contact the ascended...” he trailed, sighing deeply. He’d tried, he’d meditated, tried a few memory and subconscious enhancing technologies of the Furlings, things Adrienne would have kicked his ass for trying, but to no avail.
“I haven’t been able to make contact with Oma, Kasuf, anyone. It’s as if they are gone,“ Daniel admitted quietly, Adrienne taking a step forward in case he needed her. That had been the hardest, she could tell by the look in his eyes when he told them that it seemed on that front all was lost.
“Ok, look, this is a pretty long damn list. You say that they couldn’t let you go collect them all, fine. What can we do? What do we need to be doing next?” Jack asked, asked Daniel, as if he weren’t just the archaeologist, as if he were, well, in charge. Adrienne saw the surprise in her husband’s eyes, sure he had been deferred to on individual missions and things before she came along, but standing here, he might as well have been in Sam’s position for all of the attention and respect he was garnering. It made her proud, he deserved this, he deserved to not be treated like the man who dug through old things.
“General O’Neill, you aren’t suggesting that we just pack up and go on a wild goose chase?” Woolsey finally spoke, a tone in his voice, one that Daniel couldn’t read but really wanted to get out of here and talk to Adrienne about. Quickly, the archaeologist shook his head, the answer already at the forefront of his mind.
“No, I think we stick to protocol, send a MALP ahead, but I think the focus needs to shift from possibilities in the Asgard database to things that we know are at least definite. Keep in mind, some of these ZPMs have been hidden in their current locations for hundreds of years, so like with any expedition we won’t be sure what we are walking into. I’ve compiled a short list of planets that I recommend that we begin with, and we can start there while Teal’c takes this information to the Jaffa council,” he answered, making Adrienne beam once more.
“Got one in mind?” Jack continued as if there were no bureaucrats present, his mind already in mission mode.
“Yes, I do, there is no designation for it, but they did use gate travel, Ad please,” Daniel requested in response, Adrienne changing the slide, the picture back on an image from a pre-industrial age Japanese like society.
“I would prefer using SG-1 when we could, with Dr. McKay if he would join us, to insure that these operations are carried out quickly and with minimal training. If two teams are needed, I suggest making the Atlantis team the second. Keep the operation small, allow the rest of the teams to continue with normal operations. I am assuming that we are still going through the artifacts at area 51?” Daniel asked, now realizing in his excitement to share that he hadn’t bothered to ask either Jonas or Adrienne what exactly had been going on in his absence.
“Yes Doctor,” the senator spoke this time, “we have sent SG-14 there, and Sergeant Mardsen is leading the staff there in cross referencing with your files.”
“The senator here has also been very helpful, giving Vala SG-11 to add to her spy team, and we’ve had SG-6 & 7 going after anything Dr. Per- Adrienne and Jonas have managed to find,” Jack added, now his eyes cutting to Daniel. There really was something going on, something major and he wanted this briefing over fast, not only so he could get to work, but so he could figure out what’s going on.
“Alright, well, as you can see, Adrienne has prepared paper files for us to read at our leisure. Please direct all questions to members of the archaeology department and them only to insure that there is no confusion. Let’s start with this planet, send through the MALP while we give Daniel a chance to go through the notes further. Adrienne can you bring up that image again?” Sam asked, moving forward, not allowing anyone else to speak. Nodding, Adrienne cued up the pictures again, the world she had referred to as the Samurai planet, Jack laughing as soon as the picture was on the screen.
“Yeah, we need to send a MALP and let everyone prep because there’s no way in hell that Dr. Perky is gonna pass as a geisha with that belly,” Jack joked, speaking before he could contain himself, Sam shooting him a glare.
“Yes, we have to take in account Dr. Jackson’s condition before allowing her to participate in these missions,” Woolsey spoke right up, making Daniel wonder instantly if this was what was wrong with Adrienne.
“Agreed,” Sam said, standing quickly, ending the briefing. I need to talk to you Ad, now, Daniel thought, watching the group, some of his friends, including Rodney and Radek, not having said a word, leave the room quickly. Frowning, confused, Daniel marched over to Sam to see what he had missed and she was waiting, staring him straight in the eye.
“Daniel, it’s been almost a month since you’ve been home and Adrienne’s had a hard time these past few weeks. Why don’t you two head back to the townhouse?” she suggested, ordering, puzzling him further.
“Sam, there’s a lot of work to be done, I still need to start going through the constellations in the sky, try to come up with some sort of idea of what planet they had taken me to, the Ktaenam do not need to use gate travel and had only a handful of gate addresses, why in the world are you sending me home?” Daniel demanded, starting to get annoyed very quickly at what was happening and how strange it all was.
“Daniel, take your wife home,” Sam reiterated strongly, taking the iPad from the table and passing it to Adrienne.
“Come on Indy. I thought of some names and wanted to talk with you about that,” Adrienne whispered softly, running her arm through his, pulling him along, squeezing his bicep. Suddenly it came to him, they couldn’t talk there and in order to talk he needed to leave.
“Alright ja-wer. I’m sorry. I’ve missed you, let’s go home and get in the tub,” he muttered, letting his wife lead him into the corridor.
“The tub was a nice touch, but you had me worried,” Jack said the minute Daniel shut the door to the closet, standing there, beer in hand.
“No worries Jack, I think you’ve seen my bare ass more times than I care to count, I’m not about to give you another show,” Daniel replied, pushing past to see what was going on in his living room.
“Thanks sha, I’m so glad you want to preserve my dignity,” Adrienne retorted, following behind, heading straight for her instant coffee maker, Vala already passing over a mug of hot cocoa.
“Merci mon ami,” Adrienne thanked, taking the mug gratefully warming her hands with it.
“Found Willow,” Jonas announced as he emerged from the office, DVD in hand, waving it at Adrienne, smiling, obviously trying to lighten the mood.
“Alright, what in the world is going on?” Daniel asked, noting both Teal’c and Cameron sitting on his love seat, beers in hand as well, looking to Jack for what seemed to be permission to speak.
“Wait for it....” Jack replied, holding up his hand as beams of light lit the center of the room, Sam standing alone right beside their coffee table as the shimmers dissipated.
“Wonderful timing as always my dear,” Jack joked, reaching out his hand for his wife, which she took smiling.
“I aim to please, alright, is everyone here?” she asked, glancing as Cam who was swallowing his beer before continuing.
“John thought it would look to questionable if he or any of the rest of his crew came so he said to fill him in. He, Teal’c and I are going to hit the bars tonight, and Rodney, Radek and Dex might be joining us...” Cam trailed, secretively again, Vala rolling her eyes with a huff.
“Look, I’ve got the Jackson love nest taken care of, no bugs but the ones I’ve installed,” she defended, turning back to machine to make herself a cup of tea.
“Bugs since when?” Daniel asked, curious, “and why is everyone is my house? Sam, what in the hell is going on?”
“All hell broke loose once you left Daniel,” she answered, casually, taking a seat beside her husband on the sofa shooing away his offering of a beer.
“How?” he continued, feeling a hand at his back and a coffee thrust into his palm, his wife leading him to sit in a chair over to the side. He did as she requested, sitting, reaching to pull her into his lap worried about the pain in her lower back.
“RobertWoolsey notified the senate oversight committee of the infiltration of the base by the Furlings. The committee has decided that they need to reevaluate the program as it may no longer be in the best interest of the Taur’i to continue operations,” Teal’c explained, his expression the same as when he had been forced to admit that there was a divide in the Jaffa. Earth had been his safe place, but it seemed that there was a divide even here, causing a great turmoil inside the brave warrior.
“Senator Bennett was sent to oversee operations and make a judgement. He was holding out on making any sort of recommendation until we made contact with you,” Sam continued, pausing upon seeing Daniel open his mouth to speak.
“But there was contact; I sent messages to Adrienne at least five times that I can think of,” Daniel interjected but Sam was already shaking her head.
“Adrienne came to tell me, the very next morning, when they came to get your uniform. I advised her to keep quiet because by that point I had already been on the phone with nearly ever member of the IOA. They demanded that if you make contact that you were to return immediately, that it broke nearly every rule that we had on encountering new cultures,” Sam explained, Adrienne nodding in agreement as she reached to wrap her arm around him.
“When you left me a message I only told Sam and Jonas, not even the rest of the team knew we were in contact until last week when you just left a note that you would be back soon. Then, we told everyone,” Adrienne affirmed, smiling softly, looking like she wanted to kiss him again. She had missed him, she had been strong for him and what he needed to do, so disregarding the others for a moment he reached his hand behind her head, pulling her into a quick kiss.
“Go to your bedroom if you’re gonna do that,” Vala requested, grumbling, sipping her tea.
“Yeah, once again Danny boy you’ve gotten us into all sorts of trouble. Your buddy came back, your buddy has got Jonas’ planet under his thumb and now you’ve brought us some new buddies who can pop in and out of here whenever they god damn feel like it. We’re treading on thin ice here; this entire mess is about one more fuck up away from becoming the seek and destroy military mission it was in the beginning,” Jack spoke now, unable to sit and listen to his wife and friends sugar coat this anymore, “we’re screwed if this little list of yours doesn’t pan out.”
“How doable is this Daniel? This Ninja planet Addy was showing pictures of, how easy is it to get there?” Cam asked now, his eyes cutting at Vala for just a moment before returning to Daniel, a look that Daniel easily caught.
“Wait, you guys aren’t thinking about sending a team there, no MALP?” Daniel asked, now glancing up at his wife, who was nervously picking at her fingernails.
“Yes glasses, a team. Ratface doesn’t know it and neither does that sexist asshole, but SG-3 has been under my command since you left. They’ve been infiltrating Langara and taking out a few of Anubis commanders, making it look like an accident,” she explained slyly, Adrienne now standing from Daniel’s lap.
“So, we’ve become a secret undercover organization in three weeks!?! Ja-wer, please tell me that you haven’t been involved in this?” Daniel pleaded, worried about how deep this all was going, given the head of Homeworld Security was sitting in his living room, smiling as if he was James Bond.
“I haven’t done anything to risk Carl, I promise. Jonas and I just tweaked our work a little, waiting for you. We’ve been sending teams and MALPs after ZPMs,” she said, giving air quotes for ZPMs, “and have been making sure that amazing discoveries have been made in other areas of technology, areas that keep them occupied.”
Daniel stood there for a moment, dumbfounded, unable to believe what he was hearing. Sure, they’d come close to losing funding before, in fact most of his career here had been spent arguing to maintain funding, it was a scare like that that made him realize how important Adrienne was to him. This, on the other hand was insanity; his friends had been carrying on as an organization within an organization. Shaking his head, frowning, he looked over at Sam, momentarily at a loss for words.
“Why?” was all he could say, although his mind was swirling with a million questions, most of which having to do with why exactly this had been the course of action taken by a woman who he knew to be much more calculated. Sighing, Sam finally reached over to the beer offered to her earlier, taking a long swig from the glass bottle, setting it down before glancing up at Daniel.
“Cheyenne’s gone Daniel. No more stalling for repairs, chance of moving back there, chance of setting up an auxiliary base there. They are not repairing the facility, they stopped reconstruction over nine months ago. They’re tearing it down, as if it never existed. Slowly, and right under our noses, it seems the government is erasing the program,” she said slowly, looking over at Jack who was shaking his head, drinking his own beer.
“They don’t know we know, that I know, but we suspected it a few months back when the IOA wouldn’t let McKay into his lab. He made a few calls, poked around and found out that items were being shipped out of the facility, destroyed without Jack or I’s knowledge. Pair this with the personnel cuts and the stipend termination requests I got two weeks ago and it’s not hard to figure out what is going on,” Sam added. Daniel sat for a moment, thinking, taking it all in. He wasn’t sure that stipend requests she was talking about, but he did know that some staff members had apartments paid for them off base like he and Adrienne used to have, maybe those were being cut as well. Nodding his head, taking it all in as he looked at his friends, his wife, realizing that they were all being targeted in a way that was simply unfathomable, Daniel peered back over at Sam and Jack.
“So what do we do now?” he asked, accepting this new reality.
“We act like this is movie night while you, Jonas and Dr. Perky research this karate planet so we can send Vala and the marines on their little fact finding mission. Oh, and order pizza, because if I have to act like a damn college student and stay up all night doing geek stuff I want the food to match,” Jack replied, standing to get his phone.
“I’ll call,” Adrienne offered, turning for the kitchen to get some take-out menus and start a few pots of coffee rather than brew cup by cup.
“Ad?” Daniel shouted behind her, making her turn on her feet.
“Yea,” she asked back over her shoulder, wondering what else it would take to convince him that Sam had tried every other option, that this was what they had to do.
“No Walking Dead characters, comic or show. Carl is out,” he added, smiling at her and receiving one back in return.
“I think living on Earth and having a desk job has made the ‘ole girl soft,” Cam joked from the end of the sofa, Vala’s legs stretched across him, her light snore echoing off of the back of the furniture.
“That and Dex, she’s become quite the little woman. It’s cute, she wants me to teach her to cook for him,” Adrienne replied, standing slowly, painfully, from her position on the floor.
“No comment,” Daniel added, peering up at Adrienne to tease only to see her struggle to stand. She winced in pain and he leapt to his feet, grabbing her arm and steadying her.
“Are you alright ja-wer?” he asked, concerned, watching her flush in embarrassment.
“Yea Indy, I’m fine, it’s just, the baby,” Adrienne answered, regretting it, Daniel holding his finger up as he pulled her aside.
“You need to sleep,” he urged, noting that the clock read eleven at night; they had been at this for hours.
“I’m fine,” she argued, pulling away, heading back to the kitchen to get herself another vitamin water.
“Adrienne, listen, I’m so sorry that I have been away for so long, left you for so long, but I’m back now. You were almost nineteen weeks along when I left, so what you are twenty two weeks now. Ja-wer, you need rest and sleep. I can’t have Abayomi not being cared for,” he whispered in her ear, kissing her cheek lightly.
“Joy is a girl’s name, nah ‘appenin’ sha,” Adrienne replied, agreeing silently to needing rest, letting him lead her gently to the bedroom.
“I’ll be right back, if I don’t follow and make sure, she’ll come lumbering in here as soon as she thinks I’ve forgotten,” Daniel shouted over his shoulder, Adrienne shoving his arm. Rolling his eyes, Jack looked back at the print outs from Daniel’s office, comparing them to the star charts on the laptop.
“Ten bucks says that they’re gonna boink in there. He hasn’t been home in weeks,” Jack declared reaching for his beer.
“I’ll take that bet honey,” Sam replied, smiling at him coyly, reaching out to shake his hand in a gentlemanly fashion.
“Look at you Sam, getting ready to waste ten perfectly good dollars that I fully intend to spend on cheap beer,” Jack replied laughing.
“Nope, ten bucks for me to get a cheesecake. They already have,” she answered smiling, “cameras were shut off in the lab today.”
“Excuse me?” Jonas asked, his head popping up Jack erupting into laughter.
“Yep, they like that center table too, so I wouldn’t eat there if I were you,” Jack added, Sam smacking his arm.
“Jonathan James O’Neill!” she exclaimed, Jack sitting back against the love seat cushions, a smile across his face.
“You brought it up, how do you think we found them out? Daniel forgot to turn off the cameras one time and it was all caught on tape,” Jack added, laughing, scanning the crowd to gauge their reactions.
“O’Neill, I am quite certain that DanielJackson would not like his intimate relations with AdrienneJackson discussed so openly,” Teal’c cautioned.
“Whatever, they’re married, they’re getting ready to be parents, it’s just funny now,” Jack replied, leaning back over the photos and changing the subject, “so, we’re thinking of taking in a jumper via the Odyssey?”
“I wouldn’t be going asleep like a bébé, but I got da faiblesse, and I’m not sure why,” Adrienne apologized as soon as Daniel closed the bedroom door behind them, watching his wife walk carefully to the dresser.
“Adrienne, let me get that please, when did this get so bad?” he asked, worried, that brightness from before seemingly fading away in front of him.
“About a week after you left, when I hit twenty weeks. My hips slide in and out and I’m so tired one day and wired and can’t sleep the next. He’s restless, he’s never still, so the only sleep I’m really getting is just passing out due to exhaustion,” she admitted, not wanting to, but having him here in front of her she just couldn’t lie. His face changed, his mouth widening and he raced forward to embrace her, holding her head tightly to his chest.
“Ja-wer, I’m so sorry. Why didn’t you tell me? Why didn’t you leave a note, they would have brought it back to me?” he asked, holding her, feeling her cry in his arms.
“Indy, I canna be makin’ a bahbin when so much is at stake. It’s a lil discomfort, dat’s all, and now ya back wit me. Now go on, I got dis, jus let me get some rest,” she insisted, pushing him away, but he was having no parts of it, holding on tightly.
“I’m gonna lay down with you until you’re asleep. Jonas is very competent. They can live without me for five minutes,” he argued back, laying down beside her as she got under the covers.
“Drogo and I thank you for your chivalry,” she teased as he wrapped her arms around her waist, holding her so close to him, ever so close. She missed his arms, she missed this, and already as they lay there together, Adrienne could feel herself drifting off to sleep.
“Not that King, Throne, whatever show either, but for the record there was one character on there, Jaime I think. That’s not so bad,” he whispered in her ear, kissing her head lightly, feeling her giggle in his arms as she slipped into the world of dreams.
“She’s asleep,” Daniel announced as he reentered the living room, seeing his friends still gathering around the table, Jonas in particular looking at him strangely.
“Everything alright?” Daniel asked, feeling a vibe in the room from even Sam who was holding out her hand for Jack, her husband slapping a ten dollar bill into it.
“Don’t ask Jackson, you don’t want to know,” Cam answered before the question was asked, standing and walking the folder over.
“Ok,” Jonas started in, clearing his throat, “so this planet, the one that looks like ancient Japan, it seems to show the most promise, which is sadly what you said in the briefing, but we can still send a MALP afterward, cover our tracks. According to your notes Medan says it was given to a temple elder, and if their history played out anything like Japan, they would be embracing a pre-industrial culture right about now, including the Bushido way of life or something similar. They have a gate, but Sam thinks it’s better to go covertly.”
“That I still need to work out, why I would need who I would need, but we can send Vala and another ahead to check on things, see if there is anything we need to know,” Sam started, a phone buzzing and bouncing on the coffee table interrupting her thought. Daniel saw her make a face at the gadget, reaching for it and sliding the bar, bringing it quickly to her ear.
“What’s wrong Walter?” was how she answered, not hello, not anything else, revealing to Daniel instantly how far this plot extended.
“Oh no,” Sam said to no one person in particular, standing, pacing, her eyes racing, although not making contact with her husband, “good, I had hoped that Carolyn would. Alright, well, yes. Yes, I agree. Jack and I will head in first as to not arouse suspicion. Thank you Walter. No, there’s nothing else. Thank you.”
She stood in silence for a while, her head down, shaking it slowly before turning around.
“Honey, what’s going on?” Jack asked, Sam sighing and approaching the group.
“SG-2 has fallen into a coma, all of them. According to Walter, who was, well, cryptic, it seems the entire team just dropped into a coma in the commissary, simply passed out at dinner. Carolyn is running tests, but so far there is no good reason for this to have happened,” Sam responded, both Jack and Daniel’s face screwing up in confusion.
“What do you mean dropped into a coma?” Daniel questioned as Sam was already on her phone making another call.
“Just out, and it doesn’t seem to be anything she can explain right now. We need to get back,” Sam said, answering Jack more than Daniel.
“What about the mission?” Jonas asked, concerned yes about SG-2 but his thoughts now on his people, on how the solution to saving his world was in sight finally, not just something to be pushed aside.
“Like I said, we’ll send Vala ahead, see if this is something we can handle, alone without making it an official mission or at least find something that we can use to justify making it a mission if we need to gate in,” she replied, Cam turning to nudge Vala, who was already starting to sit up on the sofa.
“On it, I’ll take Ronon with me. That way everyone will just think we are having a little fun rather than work,” she suggested, reaching for her phone.
“Sam, dear, I’d like to put ten bucks on that one,” Jack joked, collecting beer bottles as Daniel shooed him away.
“Look, if this is just medical, I’d like to stay here. Adrienne’s not doing well, I didn’t know and I’m not sure if she has told any of you, but the baby’s just,” he started, Jonas shaking his head.
“Don’t beat yourself up Daniel, really, don’t. She’s been trying to play it off, but yeah, we know. You did what you had to and she did what she had to do,” he said quickly knowing how he would feel if he were to return to his people, after all of this, to find that someone close to him needed him.
“Stay here. If this is an outbreak, I don’t want her any where near it if there is a chance that she hasn’t already contracted it,” Sam answered, turning to face Jonas as well, “and you need to stay here as well. You three are my entire link to the Furling knowledge and I need to keep the three of you as unexposed as possible.”
“Which means that my dear Jaffa friend, plus us military types get to skee-daddle. Mitchell, stall about thirty minutes or so, make it look like you and T went out bar hopping or something. I don’t think I need to say this, but this meeting never happened,” Jack made clear, again, looking at Daniel, who suddenly felt as if he had been gone for years rather than a matter of weeks. Without much else to say Sam and Jack filed out of the townhouse, Cam and Teal’c shortly after, presumably to have a few beers to make their story believable. Jonas hurried to help clean, Daniel noting that he knew where everything was and rather than be jealous that another man knew so much about his home and wife, he was touched that their friend cared enough to step in and take care of her.
“I’m not sure how much sleep you got on your, uh, mission, but if you want to go an get some sleep I’m ok out here,” Jonas offered sheepishly, nodding down the hall.
“It won’t be like I am getting any real sleep, you seem to have crashed here. Have you heard the pregnancy snore? I think the next few months are going to be spent on the sofa,” Daniel joked, heading to the kitchen only to stop at the door.
“I’d offer you wine, but since my entire world seems to have turned upside down in my absence I’m thinking we should stay sober,” he added, smiling back at his friend.
“Oh yay, more coffee,” Jonas laughed back, taking the stack of papers to the dining room to set up there, a sinking feeling in his stomach that this was going to be a long night.
She felt bad, sending Jack away, but he understood without question, that in order to maintain this secret grouping of theirs, a team within a team, having him poke around the lab for no good reason was just as suspicious as all of them gathering at Daniel’s house coincidentally as soon as he had returned. Sam had used the baby excuse, but they needed answers fast, because before long Adrienne was going to have that baby and unless the boy was as troublesome as his parents, there would be no need for six or more childless adults to be rushing to the Jackson household. Stopping by her office, she gave Walter the directive to let Vala and Ronon take a the Odyssey and a puddle jumper under the guise of the weekly check on Languara, giving him time to adjust crew schedules and whatnot so their true plan would not be revealed. She had even been stopped by Woolsey in the hallway, demanding to know where Daniel was, demanding to know why Dr. Lam had called for an on base quarantine, but Sam was ready for that too, Carolyn having forwarded her the CDC’s latest outbreak list.
“Robert, do you read your memos anymore or do you just trail around Bennett listening to his garbage?” Sam asked, containing herself, bullshit the word she had wanted to use instead.
“Of course, I read my memos,” he spat in return, reaching into his pocket for his phone, tapping around. Be there, she thought, Adrienne spent the better part of a day teaching Carolyn and Cam how to back date things so they could cover their lies...
“Oh,” he said, his face in a frown, his eyes still at his phone.
“But this outbreak of severe flu is in Colorado Samantha, in case you have forgotten we are now stationed at the nation’s capital,” he still argued, missing the point.
“Yes Robert, and with mandatory leave, regular leave, and how many personnel went home for the holidays, personnel could have brought back anything that they didn’t catch themselves but were happy to spread,” she retorted, sticking to the plan as Carolyn had explained, hoping that she wouldn’t have to resort to quoting a list of endless statistics that the talented doctor had added to her argument.
“No, no, it’s been mild on the East Coast for sometime, I guess we should have expected something like this to happen. But what about doctor, I mean the doctors Jackson? The lab’s shut down and they are not answering the phone in their quarters,” he continued, Sam wishing that her punching of him in the face could have been reality. Why are you calling a pregnant couple in the middle of the night anyway, she started to answer, instead choosing her words carefully.
“I sent them home. I wanted Adrienne far away from this mess if it was the flu. Daniel’s got medic training, and I sent Jonas as well so if there is a problem everything is taken care of. Don’t you agree at the very least that the safety of their child is of the utmost concern?” that she had to toss in, because even Robert Woolsey would never agree to injuring Adrienne’s unborn child.
“Fine, fine, just, Samantha, I’m trying here, I really am, but the oversight committee is on my ass with everything. Just, can you just make an effort to keep me informed,” he asked, smiling, Sam returning the obviously fake gesture.
“I apologize Robert, just a lot going on,” she lied deftly, racking her brain for an excuse for her exit.
“Well, I must be off. It’s nearly two, and I’m too old to keep these hours,” he said for her, walking down the hall as if he wasn’t tired at all, heading straight for the elevators.
“Stairs it is,” Sam muttered under her breath, jogging down to see what Carolyn had discovered.
“As I’m sure you already know, for the most part coma is caused by the brain going into a shut down state caused by a trauma. A head injury, for example, can lead to a tearing of some smaller nerves or if the brain itself is slammed into the wall of the skull it can cause swelling, making the brain shut down for repair, hence the coma. However, SG-2 hasn't been off world in nearly a month and after their mandatory R & R they’ve resumed regular activity, training, briefing and were getting ready to go on Adrienne’s next wild goose chase,” Dr. Lam explained as she gathered the files, reaching for some test tubes on the table. She coughed and Sam noticed her demeanor change and her eyes dart to the corner of the room. Following the doctor’s gaze, Sam saw the camera light was off, Carolyn looking relieved.
“We have had such an issue with that damn thing lately,” she said with a smile, leading Sam to Colonel Coburn, appearing to be simply sleeping peacefully on the hospital bed.
“So head injury is out?” Sam inquired, leaning as close as she dared to scan the colonel’s body.
“For one of them, I would assume they tried to treat it themselves, like some other more stubborn members of other unnamed SG teams, but all of them simultaneously, no head injury is definitely out. Which brings me to infection,” she continued, handing Sam over a folder.
“Infection?” Sam asked, backing up, her eyes widening.
“That was my very next thought, some outbreak, it would have to be something that would effect all three, so things such as diabetes or a stroke, those none traumatic medical conditions are out. But they tested negative for most of the major causes of this deep of a coma, meningitis, encephalitis,” she continued, pausing for the general to read the file herself. She was correct, all major disease types were covered, right down to common flu strains like she had lied to Woolsey about.
“This is a full blown coma, a three on the Glasgow scale, normally we would look next for diminishing brain function, but all vital signs are perfect, they’re just completely unconscious and unresponsive,” Carolyn concluded, leaning back against the wall, tired, worn, working far too hard on all of this.
“I can order an MRI, but like I said, there is no indicator that this is anything other than well, something we couldn’t have expected. Something from the outside,” she added the last part carefully, saying what Sam was already thinking, that she was dreading.
This was from the outside.
This was from where she thought it was.
SG-2 had come in from a scouting mission, to check on Langara, to a neighboring planet, but only she and Jack had known that, they hadn’t even told Daniel or Teal’c.
Fuck, she thought, just unable to say the words aloud, this can’t be happening.
Daniel sent Jonas to bed once he had a better idea of what this planet, whatever they called themselves, had done with the ZPM. If their theories were correct, and the culture did evolve as expected, chances of the device, unused and stored in a temple were high so he only hoped that Vala and Ronon would come back with some useful information, namely the best way in. He sighed, reaching for his phone to text Vala when he realized that he probably couldn’t do that either, not yet understanding the rules of what he had walked in to.
“I think I’m gonna call it a night,” Daniel announced, standing from the table, leaving the folders strewn about, too tired to straighten up anything now.
“Couch ok?” Jonas asked, pointing back to the living area.
“Yeah, Ad keeps extra blankets in the hall closet,” Daniel replied, hoping Jonas knew where to find them since he was too tired to try to make a suitable bed either. Thankfully, the Langaran nodded and made his way to the hall closet, opening the door and scanning.
“Keep your phone nearby, in case Sam calls, I will too. Sleep well,” Daniel added, dragging himself to his bedroom. The door was closed when he got there, suction or whether Adrienne had gotten up to shut it he was unsure, but he turned the knob quietly and slipped inside, closing it behind him. Silence enveloped him, she wasn’t even snoring, for which he was also thankful, so he tiptoed over to the dresser, stripping down to boxers and a t-shirt. Tossing the clothes on the floor, again, that could wait till morning since apparently the hamper had been moved, Daniel walked around to his side of the bed, the side by the door, lifting the blankets and crawling in beside her.
“Good night ja-wer,” he whispered softly in her ear, kissing her cheek, cuddling down beside her.
“I’m not asleep Indy,” she muttered, rolling onto her back and then wincing in pain, “your damn baby has decided it wants to spar with my insides.” Frowning he leaned up on his elbow, reaching across her waist to feel for himself, pressing down lightly on her abdomen. She was right, the little guy was going crazy in there, it was no wonder that she couldn’t sleep.
“Adrienne I’m so sorry, I wish there was something I could do,” he said, feeling terrible, he had no idea that this was all so hard for her.
“It’s ok sha, it really is. Almost over, right? Forty less wha, twenty two, equals eighteen. I’ve got dis,” she assured him reaching for his hand, squeezing it lightly.
“Wait, I can do something,” he said, sitting up quickly reaching for her hand.
“What are you doing?” she whispered, but let him, sitting up to join him.
“No, ja-wer, lay back, trust me, well, I’ve read this but never tried it,” he amended, laying her hand in his own, rubbing his fingers roughly in the center of her palm.
“The book says that I should move when the baby kicks a lot, I was about to get up,” she teased, bringing up the book again, something he hadn’t missed in the three weeks he was gone.
“Well, your husband wants to try something else, so can you humor him?” he spat back, lifting her hand now, starting to squeeze at the point between the index finger and the thumb. It was odd, she expected to feel nothing, but the sensation was instant, her entire hand relaxing and the feeling spreading down the rest of her arm.
“Ok, so, leave it to you to turn my own tricks on me,” she joked, laying back on the pillow, ignoring the baby’s kicks.
“Oh you mean the use of non-medical alternatives to treat a problem? Those tricks?” he shot back, moving now down her arm, relaxing that as well, making her feel like she hadn’t in nearly a month: calm.
“Yes ya coo-yon,” she muttered, letting him work his hands up her arm, feeling him shift on the bed and switch to the other side. There was a pause, she was about to beg him not to stop when she felt a coolness on her skin, moisture and realized that he was now using lotion.
“Cho co, Indy, don’t stop,” she spat out, hearing him laugh at her feet, where he was now reaching.
“Didn’t plan on it, but if your back is as bad as your arms were, I might have to work in shifts,” he replied, rubbing her feet down, loosening the muscles, working only the pressure points as in her arms and not the skin as before. Her heart was starting to beat faster at the rush of blood to those areas, enough to calm the jumping child in her womb.
“I think you’ve knocked out Atreyu,” she quipped, holding in laughter.
“It’s good to know that Mosi appreciates massage, I will have to remember that if he is a fussy baby,” Daniel replied, without missing a beat, working his way to her calves, one by one, pinching the bottom of her calf muscle carefully, releasing a surge of comfort through her body.
“My back,” she gasped out, surprised really, not at the massage, but at his ability to get it to work.
“I take it that worked?” he inquired, moving up higher to press into the back of her knee.
“More dan dat, gah I be de’pouille, but I feel so much better, gah I love you,” she whimpered out, and he could tell in her voice that she meant it, that she wasn’t just trying to get him to stop for his sake.
“Did Merlin stop kicking?” he asked sweetly, rubbing the rest of the lotion onto his hands and crawling up beside her.
“That one’s not even funny. Makes me think you need to get down and work those man feet of mine some more,” she replied, reaching out for him.
“Nuh uh missy, left side,” he ordered, rolling her over and away from him.
“Why Daniel?” she whined, acting poorly, hoping he wouldn’t notice but he laughed as he curled his body beside hers and pulled himself close.
“Because I read the book, alright. Go to sleep Dr. Jackson,” he ordered, preparing himself to do the same.
Leaving Carolyn Lam and Cassie Frasier to tend the strangely sick SG-2 members, Samantha Carter O’Neill dragged herself to bed, opting for their on base quarters as she knew Jack had. She didn’t bother with the light and had barely pulled on her pajama pants when her phone was ringing again, loudly, from her desk.
“I take it the coma guys aren’t just opting for group meditation,” Jack said from the bed, rolling over and sitting up, rubbing his eyes.
“Stay, I’ll take care of it,” she assured him, reaching for the phone, Carolyn’s name across the screen.
“I’d rather die before I hit retirement age, so let’s go play with diseases,” Jack continued, standing and peering around her shoulder.
“That’s not funny Jack,” Sam replied, making a face, bringing the phone to her ear, “please give me some good news Carolyn,” she requested, Jack already lumbering to the dresser to get some clothes.
“Hey Sam, it’s Cassie. Carolyn told me to call. Five of the night shift crew, gate repair and electrical workers, just collapsed, same as the SG-2 guys,” the young doctor whispered in the phone as Sam heard footsteps in the background and what sounded like yelling.
“Woolsey’s here, with some guy in a suit, not the senator but some other guy. They’ve cornered Carolyn, demanding answers, wanting to know why there’s a quarantine,” Cassie explained, as quietly as possible, covering her words with fact stats she was now speaking into the phone, acting as if Sam was the CDC it seemed.
“I told him flu Cass, why did he come down there?” Sam asked, hoping that she could answer, waiting as BDU pants were tossed into her shoulder.
“Yes, yes sir. At this point we still believe that it is an aggressive flu, my chief of medicine has just asked that we report it. Yes, we will call if anyone else comes in. No, thank you,” she replied, hanging up quickly, Sam letting out a sigh in response.
“It’s spread, but Carolyn’s dealing with Woolsey. We need to stay put,” Sam explained, Jack going back to sit on the bed.
“TV it is,” he said, reaching for the remote to hopefully find something on that wasn’t going to be home shopping.
When Daniel woke up the sun was peeking through the curtains and Adrienne was still asleep. Standing from the bed, he stretched and reached for his phone to check the time noting a text message from Sam.
Keep an eye on Addy. 12 now. No idea.
“Just great,” he said out loud, not thinking, still half asleep, stirring his sleeping companion from her slumber.
“Whas grea?” Adrienne said as she sat up, rubbing her eyes.
“There’s been an outbreak at the SGC, Sam got a call last night, SG-2 has slipped into a coma. Apparently it’s spread now, from the four members of SG-2 to the eight others,” Daniel explained, watching the panic in his wife’s face as she grabbed for her abdomen.
“Who? How? How’s it spreading?” Adrienne started to stammer and ask, her words fumbling, her eyes wide.
“I have no idea and from the cryptic text I just got, I don’t think we can ask. When we got the first call last night, after you had gone to bed, she ordered that you, me and Jonas stay here,” he continued, standing to see if Jonas was awake yet himself, reaching for the doorknob.
“But, why, I mean, you didn’t come wake me?” Adrienne retorted, standing to follow behind, adjusting her t-shirt around her belly.
“Because you need sleep Ad. Joking aside, you need to rest, for your sake and the baby’s,” he scolded gently from the door, reaching out for her, kissing her head gently. She was pulling away, annoyance in her face, and he was about to try to figure out a way to get her to see reason when his phone was bouncing wildly on the nightstand. Holding out a finger, Daniel dashed back over, grabbing the device from the furniture to read the screen.
20 now. Be on standby. I’m heading to the infirmary.
What was going on?
“He dropped about thirty minutes ago, mid-rant and landed face first,” Carolyn said, pointing to the IOA liaison lying in a hospital bed, clearly unconscious.
“Well, I think that answers the question as to whether or not he’s questioning teams on his own, since it seems here that only people in direct contact with SG-2 have been affected,” Sam said, trying not to smile at the vision of Robert Woolsey landing face first onto the floor.
“Yes, and it’s just that behavior that is making me think this is viral, or at least acts like a virus. The list I have so far is right over here,” the doctor replied, stepping over to a whiteboard, pointing to a group of names she had scrawled there, arrows connecting them to SG-2;
“Ok, first we have SG-2, plus all of the gate room workers that were present when they arrived. Next Carson, who was the intake physician, the two nurses working with him that evening and now Woolsey plus some of their other friends. What I don’t understand is point of contact. If this theory is correct, then you, Daniel, Adrienne and Vala should be affected,” Carolyn shook her head, confused, not as if she wanted her friends to start dropping into comas themselves, but it still didn’t make any sense.
“I was thinking of tracking their movements, but it’s been a month since they came back, a month. There’s no way that we could possibly track every soul that every member of SG-2 had contact with. Alright, let’s start with me, I’ve sent Vala onto, well, I’ve sent her on. Let’s see what makes my blood work stand out from theirs, if anything stands out at all,” Sam suggested, offering her arm freely. Shrugging, not sure what else to do, Carolyn stepping forward when Cassie came tearing out of the office, horror on her face.
“Dr. Lam, it’s Addy on the phone,” she muttered out, her face pale.
“She can’t wake up Daniel.”
Sam watched her friend fall to pieces on the computer screen, Jonas pacing nervously behind her.
“ ‘Ee sat down on da sofa after breakfast, ahn ‘ee was readin sumtin in da file ahn ‘ee fell asleep, I dought ‘ee fell asleep, but den Jonas tried ta talk to ‘im ahn....” the cajun trailed, weeping, Sam shaking her head not knowing what to say to comfort her as her crying worsened, the general feeling powerless on the other side of the screen.
“Here, Addy, let me talk, just, it’ll be ok,” Jonas said, appearing over to the side, Adrienne nodding in agreement and standing, walking out of view, presumably to Daniel’s side at the sofa.
“It’s just what she said. He was fine, telling us about your messages at breakfast, moving right onto a list of things he wanted to go over with Vala before her and Ronon got to the planet. I was trying to fill him in on the code, how we send messages to her spy ships, when he got up and went over to the sofa while I got another cup of coffee. The next thing I know, Addy’s screaming,” he explained, looking back behind him, checking on Adrienne.
“And Daniel didn’t say anything? Didn’t complain of anything?” she asked, her inquisitive mind searching for answers. There had to be something, anything, and if Daniel was down why was Adrienne still up and moving around?
“No, like I said he was just...” Jonas began to answer, trailing, disappearing downward out of the view of the screen.
“Jonas!!” Sam shouted, standing from her chair, screaming at the computer as Carolyn rushed to her side, peering on, hearing Adrienne’s voice on the other end doing the same.
“No, Jonas, no, wake-up. Why won’t you guys wake up!?! Sam,” she was red faced, tears screaming down her cheeks, clearly in a panic, her breathing labored, “wha’s wrong? Are dey gonna die? Daniel can’t die ahn da baby, I canna lose my baby,” she was sobbing, Sam looking back to Carolyn.
“We have to bring her in, bring them all in, at this point she exposed anyway and I would rather have her here,” Dr. Lam said, looking over her shoulder at Cassie Frasier, the young doctor sitting there, awaiting orders.
“Cassie, go get Jenn, I want her here when Addy arrives so we can sedate her and run an ultrasound on that baby immediately,” she continued, Cassie grabbing the phone from where it had been on the tray earlier, dialing Jennifer’s on base room. Both women stood, Carolyn watching Cassie while Sam tried to calm down Adrienne, telling her to pack anything she may need from home that she didn’t have on base as Cassie’s eager expression, desiring to help, turned into a frown.
“There’s no answer,” Cassie said, hitting the button on the phone as her face grew pale.
“Go get her, give me the phone,” Carolyn ordered, her tone changed, taking the phone from the young woman’s hand and dialing frantically.
“Rodney,” she said into the receiver, breathing a sigh of relief, “I need you to lock in on the Jackson’s house and beam over three. Adrienne is still conscious, Jonas and Daniel have slipped into the coma. Yes Rodney, I am well aware that we are beaming a baby, ok, well aware, but I can’t risk her life by leaving her there alone. Yes, please, beam them over and come down yourself. Cassie has gone to get Jennifer now. Thank you Rodney, thank you.”
“Hear that Addy, just hang tight, Rodney’s gonna beam you guys in right now,” Sam assured her, determined to stay with her, on the line until she was beamed safely into this infirmary. The cajun woman shook with fear, staring at the scream, weeping, muttering Daniel’s name when beams of light shone all around here and she disappeared.
“Ok, Carolyn, that’s Addy,” Sam said, turning around to see the doctor lying on the floor, phone in her head, a busy signal from the receiver.
“Carolyn,” Sam shouted, racing to the doctor’s side, falling to her knees to check her pulse, discovering the doctor as well was simply unconscious.
“Dammit!” Sam shouted out, slamming her fist to the floor, shimmers of light appearing in a triangle around her body.
“Sam!” Adrienne yelled herself, dashing over to her friend, leaving her husband and Jonas on opposite ends of the floor.
“Carolyn too. As far as I know what just leaves Cassie, Rodney, me, you, and, oh god....” she trailed, racing to the phone, the red phone, picking it up.
“Jack!” she gasped, relief in her voice, inside feeling instantly horrible being so glad that her husband was still awake while Adrienne stood behind her, her eyes gazing back down at her own. Turning her back to Adrienne, hoping the archaeologist wouldn’t take it the wrong way, she covered her mouth at the receiver to hide her conversation.
“Jack, it’s getting worse. I have Adrienne here and she’s the only one conscious. Daniel, Jonas, Carolyn and I’m pretty sure Cassie and Jennifer. Rodney was supposed to come up once he beamed Adrienne in, but I’m starting to doubt that he is going to make it down here,” she whispered, trying not to panic the already terrified pregnant woman.
“No joke, my sectary’s a snoozin’ away on her keyboard like that’s acceptable behavior,” he replied, but he couldn’t hide his concern, she knew him better to read between the lines.
“We need to figure out who is still conscious, who isn’t and make sure that no one is in a precarious situation,” Sam said, running a list of base operations through her head. It was morning, mid-morning, and early shift day, a non-mission day, nothing outgoing that she could think off having quelled as many missions as she could until Daniel returned home, missions at least of any substance.
“Easy, you go make sure Dr. Perky does’t have a melt down over Danny Boy,” he replied, hanging up on her.
“Addy?” Sam asked, turning to see Adrienne sitting on the floor beside Daniel, his head in her lap, running her fingers through his hair.
“I’m trying not to panic, see, this is my trying not to panic face,” she stammered out, staying strong, which Sam knew had become harder for her to do as the weeks of pregnancy passed.
“Ok, Carolyn was running my blood sample to - “ she started when the loudspeaker popped, Jack O’Neill’s voice loud over the all call system.
“Good Morning Vietnam! If you can here this that means you’re not passed out, so General O’Neill is requesting that you make sure the people around you are not going to get hurt where they lay and that you get yourself down to the infirmary pronto. Thanks!”
“Ok hun, that’s one way to do it,” Sam said, looking back to Adrienne, “I think we should take a sample from you and see if there is anything we have in common because theoretically speaking, you, me, Vala AND Daniel should have gone a while ago.”
“Should we contact Vala? Sam, what if she and Dex are knocked out floating somewhere in space?!” Adrienne countered, that look back in her face as she held her husband closer to her body.
“We can try, put out a signal, but she has to contact us, it was her idea to put that protocol into place,” Sam answered with a sigh as footsteps filled the hallway, not by a mass of people but the loud pounding of two sets of feet on the tile. Glancing up she saw her husband come pushing his way into the infirmary, Teal’c on his toes.
“SamanthaONeill, AdrienneJackson, we seem to be the only staff members unaffected,” the Jaffa stated.
“And of course Daniel’s down, it just wouldn’t be a normal SG-1 problem if Daniel was still upright,” Jack tried to joke, indicating the obvious, that given his wife’s current theory both see and the Mrs. Dr. Jackson should by lying right with them on the floor.
“Walter too?” Sam asked, wanting to know the fate of her right hand man and Jack nodded, crossing his arms at his chest.
“Yeah, but I got him all snuggled up at his desk, all cozy like. Has anyone heard from Vala?” he countered, walking to Carolyn's communicator.
“I was about to put a signal out, see if she was still close enough in to get the message,” Sam started when the infirmary view screen flashed to life, Vala’s glaring face staring them down through the screen.
“It’s spread,” she said simply, stepped back, her surroundings showing that she was still on the Odyssey, her crew not even have made it to their destination.
“Everyone but me, including my handsome cohort,” she answered, stepping back to revel Ronon Dex sprawled out on the floor, “how ‘bout you guys?” She was trying to keep calm, Sam could tell, the woman had manned enough large spaceships on her own but the sight of your friends dropping around you had to be disheartening.
“You’re looking at it,” Jack answered, making a mental note of who was still upright and who wasn’t.
“Vala, did you stop the ship, can we hold this transmission open?” Sam asked, talking as she walked, heading over to where Carolyn had set her blood sample, wondering if it was still fresh enough to work with.
“Oh yeah, you think I’m driving this big plague carrying box around the galaxy. Nope, staying put until one of you brainiacs figures out what in the hell is going on,” she answered, walking away herself, pulling up a chair. Nodding, Sam checked the sample, still seeming viable in the spinner, grabbing four syringes, vials, rubber tie offs, returning to her friends.
“Alright Vala, I’m going to start with us, but I might need you to head to the lab, take some samples and work your own blood,” the general instructed, walking to Adrienne first if not for any other reason than to give her something else to thing about then her husband for even just a moment.
Noting his wife’s intent, Jack reached down to unbutton his shirt, carefully, rolling up his sleeve, motioning her to come and take his first.
“Alright, you do the smart stuff honey, but other than the fact that we are all members of SG-1, or were at some point, why are the five of us unaffected?” he asked, scanning his friends carefully.
“ONeill, let us look at what we each have in common, see if that brings any ideas to mind,” Teal’c said, eyeing the group as well.
“That’s what I’ve been trying to do. The obvious doesn’t work, pretty, pretty, pretty,” he said, pointing to the women before turning his finger toward himself, “old and ugly,” and then pointing his finger to Teal’c, “big and ugly. No win there,” he started, holding out his arm for Sam. Shaking her head, Sam tied off his arm as Jack continued, using his head now instead of his finger.
“Then I went with the pain in the ass angle. Me, Addy and Vala, pains in the asses. T, sometimes a pain in the ass. But you honey, always perfect,” he smiled as Sam frowned, shoving the needle into his arm.
“Still gotta stick me?” he asked.
“Yep,” she answered, “keep going, you’ve got me thinking.”
“Ok, the boy girl angle doesn’t work, so that’s out. Daniel hasn’t been here to activate anything weird and if he had I’m sure that Dr. Perky would be down there in the floor with him instead of rubbing his head...” Jack continued, making a face at Adrienne who just blushed with embarrassment, her fingers stopping mid stroke.
“Now, the alien versus Earthling thing doesn’t work either, nor does the preggo thing, I’ve got nothing,” Jack finished, his eyes wandering to Teal’c for suggestions.
“Were the five of us on any mission, on anything in DanielJackson’s absence?” he asked, trying to remember who had accompanied him in his last two off world missions. Between missions and trips back and forth to the Jaffa council, his days were starting to run together.
“No, I’ve been on world since the Furlings came, and anywhere I went, Jonas was usually with me,” the cajun replied, cocking her head in the direction of the sleeping Langaran.
“It has to be physiological. There has to be something in our DNA, our blood, as a result of our ancestry or something,” Sam noted, more to her self than anyone else, taking note of who was there. She thought as she took Teal’c’s sample, walking it to the spinner, returning to the group to take Adrienne’s, who was now standing trying not to look down at Daniel.
“You, me, Teal’c, Vala and Addy. If you remove Addy from the equation I would say that it is residual naquadah in our blood streams, but Addy has never hosted and despite your best efforts, are not a Jaffa,” Sam stated, her face between a frown and a grin, hoping that the blood test would reveal anything, “and for once we can’t blame this on Daniel’s contribution,” the general added.
“Wait, Sam, what was that about the Jackson STD?” Vala joked from the screen, because of course that was what she had gleaned from the conversation.
“Daniel has never been a host, there is no reason that he would have naquadah in his blood that he could pass on to Adrienne or their baby, just a thought,” she said quickly, holding the cajun’s arm up into the air, the three tubes in her hand ready to be spun.
“Addy’s got naquadah in her blood, my naquadah,” Vala replied plainly, Adrienne’s jaw dropping. She had forgotten about that and in fact hadn’t taken a modified injection in weeks for fear of what the substance would do to the baby. Bewildered, Sam looked over at Adrienne and back to Vala, trying to understand what she was saying.
“Now you’re thinking like me,” Vala laughed, reaching behind herself to grab something to fiddle with in her hands, “Addy, Jenn and I were working on some sort of vitamin shot, made from the naquadah stabilizes in my bloodstream or some nonsense so Addy can play with the weapons she and Glasses found and keep his ex out of here.”
“That is NOT why we made it Vala!” Adrienne protested, red in the face, her gaze at Sam, realizing that shit storm that was about to be unleashed, “Vala and I had this idea that if we could duplicate, temporarily, the after effects of being a host, then more personnel could use the rather large store of weapons. We had just started testing, I only really have time to try it a few times, and it wears off quickly. To be honest, I thought that my, other, well, talents, would void it completely, but I might be wrong.”
“Wait, wait, let me get this straight. You, Jennifer and Vala created a naquadah injection?” Sam questioned, in complete and total shock.
“Jennifer technically. Vala was the donor and I was the guinea pig,” Adrienne answered quietly, “we didn’t think it would work. It was a lunch conversation that went in another direction.”
“Does Daniel know that his health loving wife is shooting up his ex girlfriend’s DNA? As if the relationship between the three of you couldn’t get any stranger,” Jack said, Adrienne already shaking her head.
“Yes, he knew. In fact, we were analyzing the results, before, I, was,” Adrienne started, shivering at the memory, “before we found out about the baby. We were going to tell you, but things, got a little, well, hairy.” Sam nodded, not happy that there had been an experiment of that magnitude going on without her knowledge, but she’d have to deal with that later.
“But Daniel already gave Dr. Perky super-healing, isn’t that all the sandworms really gave us?” Jack asked as his wife set the samples in the centrifuge, setting them to spin and separate.
“ONeill, to carry a Goa’uld would not only offer healing but resistance from disease. If SamanthaONeill is correct and this is a virus, it stands to reason that the naquadah in our blood streams would protect us from the illness,” Teal’c explained as Adrienne took a deep breath.
“I want an Amnio,” Adrienne requested, nervous, now wondering how this would effect her baby.
“I can’t now Addy, but I think that would be a good idea,” Sam answered, worried as well, worried about all of the things that Adrienne had been through and how it would affect their child, but there was no time for that, not now.
In silence Sam watched the blood twirl in a circle, her friends watching as well, looking to her for the answer. She hoped they were right, she hoped they were staring right at the solution to this, but it still didn’t answer one question.
Where had this come from?
In her heart though, she knew, she knew who had caused this and sent this, and more than worrying about her friends, waking them up, making sure they were all right, Sam knew this would be the end.
“Adrienne?” she called out, motioning for the cajun to join her, the round woman hobbling over to the counter, worry in her dark mysterious eyes.
“I want you to continue, find another guinea pig, once we have taken care of this situation, continue. If this is what has kept you safe, kept the baby safe, I want this injection. But we need to keep it under wraps, you and Jenn just continue as you were, but find another subject,”the general requested.
“Yes ma’am,” Adrienne replied, deferring to her as a boss not as a friend, thankful that she wasn’t going to get into trouble.
Her mind in a million places, thinking about the implications of an injection, getting out of this mess, how to hide this all from Woolsey and the senate oversight committee, Samantha worked quietly and quickly, her husband and Teal’c sitting down to chat and Adrienne returning to Daniel.
“It’s the naquadah,” Sam declared a few hours later, bringing her hand her her chin, “so we know what’s going on, but how to do it, how to harness it, we’d need Jennifer’s formula, Vala’s DNA...”
“I got that covered,” Adrienne shouted, standing from the floor to lay Daniel’s head down gently, rushing to the door of the cooler.
“We kept a box in here, it’s in the back of the larger cooler. Won’t have enough for everyone, but maybe enough to wake up Jenn, Carolyn, Rodney so they can start working on making more. Do you think we could use your blood Sam? Or Jack’s?” Adrienne asked at the door way Sam nodding.
“Possibly,” she answered, Adrienne heading back into the cooler, pausing one last time.
“Sam?” she asked meekly.
“Adrienne we need those injections,” the general answered.
“Can I wake up Daniel, first, with this round,” she asked quietly.
“Of course,” Sam replied, shooing Adrienne into the cooler.
“Did it work?”
“Yes - it did. Perfect hibernation it seems.”
“How did they figure out how to awaken?”
“Naqahdah in the blood stream.”
“I knew the Jaffa would be unaffected, but I did not take into account the residual in the Tok’ra hosts, or Qetesh. Have any Langarans been hosts? Tok’ra or otherwise?”
“Not that I am aware of.”
“Excellent. Tomorrow then. Add it to the food supply”