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I Was Blind, But Now I See
Kinsey looked around with open curiosity as he followed Tem through the corridors of the ship. He'd never learn his way around this place...everything looked the same! He glanced over his shoulder. Bailey followed, the naked young woman at his side, a leather collar around her neck, a thin, silver chain connected to it, the end of it in the servant's hand. He remembered well being in that position. Being nothing more than a pet. His attention returned to the young man who walked just in front of him. He was a Board Member now. And more importantly, Master had declared to all that he was now Beloved. Not just a pet. The looks of surprise, and envy, in the faces and eyes of his 'brothers' had only made him stand taller, prouder, at Tem's side.
"My Lord," the First Prime said, dropping to his knees when Tem entered the pel'tak. "It is a great honor to serve you, My Lord. We have waited long for this day."
"Yes," Tem smiled, "we have. Contact the fleet. Tell them to approach. I want to know the second they are within range."
"Yes, My Lord."
He settled himself on his throne. Beckoned Kinsey closer. "Take her to my quarters," he instructed Bailey, not even bothering to look at the pet. Noted that although the Jaffa around him had looked at the naked young woman, none of them reacted. Well trained, he thought. Very good.
Bailey nodded. He barely stopped himself from heading toward the corridor and the elevator. He wasn't supposed to know anything about Goa'uld ships; he was a human, a mere servant who'd never left the planet. "Which way must I go, sir?"
With a wave of his hand, Tem signaled the closest Jaffa. "Take them," he said absently, his attention focused on the planet beneath him. It was so beautiful. It always had been. So long...so very long! It was his now. He was the god of the First World! He was the greatest god of all!
Bailey followed the Jaffa. Nodded when the giant of a man left them alone in the garishly decorated room. Typical of Tem's taste, he thought. He glanced around. Surely there were no monitoring devices in the Goa'uld's private quarters. He pulled the communication sphere from his pocket. He hated using the damned things, but it was all he had at the moment. He took a deep breath, closed his eyes. When he opened them again, his demeanor was calm. "Selmak, are you there?"
"I am here, my old friend."
Bailey shook his head. "I'm afraid it is only I. Terrin died protecting me from the training Tem inflicted upon me. But he left his memories for me to use."
On the Tok'ra vessel, Selmak nodded. That explained several things. "I understand. I grieve with you. What is your name?"
"Bailey. Andrew Bailey."
"Andrew, what is your situation?" Selmak asked gently.
"I am on Tem's flagship. He is preparing to announce his presence. I have a young woman with me. We must get her away from him."
"Can you make it to the transporter rings?"
"I can try."
"Good. Contact me again as soon as you are there."
"Very good," Bailey replied. He deactivated the sphere. Glanced at Shannon. She was standing in the middle of the room, her eyes practically rolling in her head from the last dose of Valium he'd given her. He gently removed the collar. Looked around for something to cover her bruised and battered body with. Grabbed the silk duvet from the bed in the adjoining room.
He closed his eyes, accessing the memories that Terrin had left, then nodded firmly. He knew where to go. Now, he just had to get there. He put his arm around the young woman. "You must do exactly as I say, do you understand?"
She managed to nod.
"You can't make a sound, you must remain silent. Can you do that?"
"Good. Here we go. It will all be over soon, I promise," he said softly. He opened the door, checked the corridor to make certain there were no Jaffa to see them exit the room. Led his charge hurriedly in the direction of the elevator. Hoped like hell that none of the men wearing the strange armor would stop them.
A A A A A A
Ballard ran a hand over his haggard features. Jacob Carter informed him that his daughter would soon be on board. So much to say to her, he thought. So many things to explain.
The ship that they knew was hanging above the planet wasn't visible to their eyes. It was, however, visible to the scanners that Aldwin operated. "This shielding technology is very old," the young Tok'ra mused.
"Probably the first used," Selmak replied absently. Jacob's knee bounced as she fought to control her anxiety, waiting for a signal from the man who'd been Terrin's host.
"Selmak, I can't get to the rings. There are several Jaffa guarding them," Bailey's voice whispered.
Selmak closed her eyes. Listened as Daniel quietly translated for his teammates.
"Can you get us onto that ship?" Jack asked.
"It won't be easy. Probably set off a dozen alarms," Jacob replied.
"The Jaffa on that ship have never been in battle. Hell, this is probably the first time they've been on a ha'tak," Jack said.
"True," Jacob agreed, nodding his head slowly.
"So get us over there. We meet up with this Bailey, and get him and the girl back over here."
He looked at the faces of the SG-1 team. They were practically asleep on their feet, if their eyes were anything to go by. But there was solid determination in each gaze. "All right," Jacob said finally. "I'm going to tell George to get those fighters in the air."
Jack nodded his agreement; led the team to the rings. "We get in, we grab them, and then get the hell out."
Four heads moved up and down in understanding.
"Get us over there, General," Jack said quietly.
The alarms were already clamoring overhead when the rings disappeared from around them. The sound of Jaffa on all sides had them diving for cover. Ever grateful that the Goa'uld built their ships with exposed support beams, the team waited for the inevitable, knowing that they'd see the enemy long before the enemy knew they were even there.
A A A A A A
Tem was on his feet. "What is the meaning of this?"
"I do not know, My Lord," one of the Jaffa replied nervously. "We detected a ring transport. We're trying to isolate where it went."
For several seconds he stood still, completely stunned. Who knew that his ship was here? Who would dare to ring to his flagship...at the very moment he was about to announce to those on the planet below him that he was their god, and that they'd kneel before him, and serve him, or they'd die. He whirled to face Kinsey. "Who would do this?"
It took time for the ker'nish'ta to completely leave the body of a slave who'd been subjected to training with the drug. If the dosage continued, the memory never returned. It was too soon for the neural pathways to his 'old' memory to re-establish themselves. Even though the information was there, it had no way to make itself known. Kinsey shook his head. "I do not know, Master," he said truthfully.
The Goa'uld frowned. The only people he'd brought with him was Kinsey, and Bailey, so that he could continue to care for the new pet...Bailey! Tem dropped back onto his throne. It all made perfect sense now! Who else would know all of his movements? Who else would be in such a position to betray him? Just as he'd once betrayed Ra. "Go to my quarters. Bring Bailey to me, now!" he roared. He'd kill the treasonous bastard. Even if it meant that the woman wouldn't have a caretaker. She could still be trained.
A A A A A A
"Okay, kids, we don't have a choice," Jack said softly into his radio. "We sweep from left to right. And then we move straight down the corridor. Got it?" Four quiet affirmatives filled his ear. "Now!" he shouted, jumping to his feet, his P90 spraying a hail of bullets at the Jaffa who approached the place where the intruders had 'disappeared'.
None of the men had ever faced such weapons. When they realized that the weapons were taking down their comrades, and with apparent ease, they began to back away. It had been millennia since any of Tem's Jaffa had seen battle. These men were trained Jaffa, but they had very little experience. And they'd had no elders to tell them stories of great battles. They had myths of days long past and forgotten. Nothing that would prepare them for this rain of death.
"Jacob, where are they hiding?" Jack asked, watching as two groups of Jaffa turned tail and ran toward the elevator.
"Cargo hold three," was the reply.
"Got it. Teal'c, lead on. Radar, anything to tell me?"
"Nope," Casey said, falling into place behind Teal'c.
Four times they were required to prove just how deadly they were. Each encounter found the Jaffa fighting just a little harder, remaining in place just a little longer. They didn't have experience. But they'd been taught well. And they learned quickly.
"Okay, these boys are starting to get the idea," Jack said worriedly. "Teal'c, take Carter and get to the rings. Make sure they're programmed to get us the hell out of here. Daniel, Radar, let's go."
The team split up, which only served to confuse the Jaffa momentarily. That the enemy had knowledge of the vessel on which they served only added to that confusion.
They ran into very few Jaffa on the cargo levels. Those who were unfortunate enough to be there paid for their presence with their lives.
Bailey heard the sound of gunfire. Jaffa didn't use weapons like that. He pulled Shannon closer to his side, backed deeper into the shadows.
Jack raced through the door. "Bailey? Come on, we gotta go!"
"Shannon? It's okay, Shannon, we're here to take you home," Casey said softly.
The gray haired servant stepped into the dim light from the emergency beacons. "Selmak sent you?"
"Yeah, she did. Well, you heard Jacob's voice," Jack replied. "We have to go, now!"
Daniel put his arm around the young woman's waist, Bailey did the same on the other side. They ran toward the door, following Casey as she led the way, her P90 clearing a path for them as they moved to the more populated areas of the ship. Jack made certain that any Jaffa who might have thought about following them changed their minds.
Sam and Teal'c were waiting for them, their own weapons barking loudly at any Jaffa who dared to wander into the corridor where they waited for their teammates.
A A A A A A
Tem was livid as reports filtered through to him; the intruders seemed to be moving at will on his ship. His ship! The fools who served him were proving to be a cowardly lot, terrified of the Tau'ri weapons. He'd take this planet by force! All would suffer for this outrage! "Launch the gliders!"
"There are no gliders, My Lord," the Jaffa replied. He swallowed hard, backed against the console at the look of rage in the flashing eyes of his god.
"What do you mean, there are no gliders?"
"High Priest Hes'ire gave them to Lord Yu as a sign of peace, so that your holdings might be left alone," the man explained.
"My Lord," the Jaffa at the communications console spoke up, "I cannot raise your fleet."
With a primal scream of absolute rage, Tem lifted his hand, pointed the ribbon device at the nearest man, and held him in the flow of energy. "This is all wrong!"
Kinsey frowned. Master was sounding like a spoiled child, one whose favorite toy had been broken. He was throwing an old fashioned temper tantrum. "Master, all is not lost-"
"Silence!" Tem shouted. He began to pace. There were no gliders. Well, there were...he stalked to the communications console, shoved the Jaffa out of the way. Activated it. "Taylor? Launch my fighters! Now! Send them to Washington, DC. I want that city destroyed. Contact me when they beg for mercy."
"Yes, Master," Taylor's voice replied.
A A A A A A
Satellites picked up the movement of thirty-six aircraft from an airfield one hundred miles east of Rio De Janeiro. General Hammond scrambled the F-18 squadrons that had been on alert since word had come in from Jacob Carter. He was on the phone with the president, knowing that the ensuing aerial battle would need to be explained to a curious public, and probably a few irate foreign leaders.
Jack slid into place just as the rings closed around the team and the evacuees. The Jaffa who had been in pursuit could only watch as the intruders disappeared.
Ballard was waiting anxiously when the team reappeared in the hold. Bit back his cry when he saw the bruised face of his daughter. His grown daughter. "Shannon? Baby, it's Daddy," he said softly.
"It is good to see you again, Dennis," Bailey said wearily.
"And you, my friend."
"I did my best to protect her."
"I know you did."
Shannon tried to focus on the man standing anxiously in front of her. "Who are you?"
"I'm your dad, Shannon."
She studied him, although the drugs in her system prevented her from seeing clearly. "He left us."
"Not because I wanted to. You have to believe that," Ballard said softly.
"She needs to rest," Bailey said gently. "There will be plenty of time to talk later."
"Did he...did he...did he mark her?"
"I'm afraid so. Nipple rings, genital rings, and a tongue ring. If the rings are removed now, the holes will close. As will yours."
Bailey smiled. "Yes, I'm sure."
SG-1 had moved into the main cabin of the ship as soon as they'd arrived, giving the man with them time alone with his daughter, and the man who'd saved her. The ship was small enough that it was impossible not to hear some of the conversation. They all looked at one another when the piercings were mentioned.
"We have to get him to follow us," Jack rasped. He glanced at the faces of his team. They were exhausted. And the show wasn't over yet.
Sam nodded, barely able to move her head. "If we fire on that ship, it will get caught in Earth's gravitational pull. It won't be easy to hide another alien ship crash."
Jacob nodded. "Thor, we have a bit of a problem."
"I am listening, General Carter," the little alien responded.
"We have to get Tem to follow us. We can't shoot him down here."
"Whoa!" Daniel grinned when the Asgard ship suddenly appeared, looming menacingly above the Goa'uld ship.
"That'll make him piss his pants," Jack chuckled.
A A A A A A
Tem gasped when the ship appeared above him. It was unlike anything he had ever seen, although there were definite signs that it was Asgard. He wasn't surprised to see the Asgard appear on the communication screen.
"I am Thor, Supreme Commander of the Asgard Fleet. This planet is protected by treaty. If you attack, it will be a violation of that treaty."
"I do not know of this treaty," Tem scoffed.
"That is not my concern. If you attack this planet, I will be forced to protect it. The treaty will be nullified. And the Goa'uld Empire will be guilty of breaking the treaty."
The Goa'uld paled. Ra had broken a treaty with the Asgard. Thirteen systems had fallen to the Asgard in a matter of days. He clenched his fists. Years of planning...no, centuries...ten centuries of planning, waiting, arranging everything so that the planet would fall into his hands with little trouble. Years of scheming to become the greatest of all Goa'uld, of ruling the First World. For naught. It was all crumbling around him. He took a deep breath. He was Tem! He'd return to his home planet. That which had been given to him by Ra. And he'd learn what had transpired in his absence. And he'd return. Treaty, or no treaty, he would have this planet. He would rule over the Tau'ri! He looked at his Jaffa. "Move us away. When I give you the signal, you will engage hyperdrive. You will take me to Menes," he said quietly.
"Yes, My Lord." The Jaffa complied.
When the ship was far enough away from the Asgard, Tem grimaced. He would be back. And would show no mercy to those who dared to stand against him. "Now."
A A A A A A
The Goa'uld ship jumped into hyperdrive, disappeared into the darkness of space. "Should we pursue?" Aldwin asked.
Jacob chuckled. "Not this time."
Jack put a hand on the general's shoulder. "We appreciate the help, Jacob," he said softly.
"We owe you, Jack," the older man replied.
"O'Neill, do you require further assistance?" Thor asked.
"No, old buddy. Thanks for the save."
"You are quite welcome. We will speak again."
"Door's always open," Jack replied.
The Asgard ship moved away.
"Well, hopefully nobody noticed all of this going on," Daniel said dryly.
"Sun spots," Sam grinned.
"Huh?" the young archaeologist looked at his friend quizzically.
"We just claim that sunspots created shadows and shapes," Sam explained.
Casey giggled. "Yeah, that will work with all the people who have high powered telescopes and just watched an Asgard ship appear and disappear above a floating pyramid!"
"It happened quickly enough to keep too many people from being able to prove they saw anything," Jacob said.
"I'll let General Hammond and the president worry about what to tell John Q," Jack said. He turned back to Jacob. "One last favor?"
"Tell George I said hello," the general grinned.
"Let's go kids." Jack led the team back into the cargo bay. "Time to go home, folks."
Jacob gave a smile and a wave as the team and the three civilians disappeared in the flash of light. Once again SG-1 had pulled off the impossible.
Aldwin scowled at the console in front of him.
"What's wrong?" Jacob asked.
"Tem is probably on his way to his home planet," the young man said.
"It will take time. And he's been gone for awhile. The other Goa'uld aren't going to be happy to see him. Remember how thrilled they were to see Hathor?"
"She suffered great losses quickly when she tried to reclaim what had been hers," Aldwin replied.
"Yeah. And she was a hell of a lot smarter than Tem. She'd been around a lot longer. Selmak thinks that Tem has changed drastically by living among the Tau'ri. He doesn't seem to be thinking universal domination, only global."
The frown deepened. "He's been away from the Goa'uld for a very long time."
"Yes he has," Jacob agreed. "Let's go home. We still have Ba'al, and Anubis, to worry about."
A A A A A A
Barely able to walk, the team led Ballard, his daughter, and Bailey to the infirmary. Janet was waiting for them.
Shannon was terrified, so much had happened to her in the span of two days that her mind was beginning to shut down. She recognized one face in the midst of strangers. "Casey? Casey, help me...please?" she whispered. "Please...don't let them hurt me again."
The slender blonde moved to stand beside the bed where the young woman was laying, still wrapped in the satin duvet. "I'm right here, Shannon. I won't leave you, I promise."
The brunette wrapped her hand around the slender fingers that had grasped hers. "Thank you."
"Sleep, now," Casey whispered.
With a little nod, the young woman closed her eyes.
Janet pulled the curtain around the bed. "Mind helping me put a johnny on her?"
"Not at all."
Both women gasped when the blanket was pulled away from the naked body. Bruises, in the shape of hands, covered her torso, her hips, her thighs. Several red marks on her neck looked suspiciously like finger imprints.
"Take them out," Casey said quietly, firmly.
"Those damned rings...take them out! That's his way of marking his pets...tagging them. She has a tongue piercing too."
With a nod of understanding, Janet searched for and found the release clasps on each piece of jewelry, carefully removed the rings. Tossed them into the bowl that she'd handed to her temporary assistant. "I need to do a pelvic. I want you here in case she wakes up."
"Janet, I don't know...that's pretty...um...personal," Casey objected.
"Case, right now you're the only person she's responding to. I need her to remain calm."
With a reluctant nod, Casey moved to the head of the bed.
Jill arrived with a pelvic exam kit, carefully unwrapped it and handed the needed pieces of equipment to the doctor.
She cringed when the speculum was inserted. Janet had been gentle during the exam during which she'd performed a pap smear. But the damned thing was uncomfortable.
"Oh, god," Janet hissed.
"She's been raped all right. Brutally. I'm afraid there might be some scarring. It won't be bad, but it could cause discomfort."
"During intercourse, you mean," Casey said softly.
The petite doctor nodded. "I'm afraid so."
"After what she's lived through, she's not going to be ready for that for a long, long time," the slender blonde replied.
Janet removed the rings that had been inserted into the unconscious women's labia, tossed them into the bowl as well. She gave instructions to Jill, an IV was to be started, antibiotics to fight any infections that might flare up from the damage done.
Ballard was pacing the corridor outside of the infirmary, waiting for word about his daughter. "Shannon?" he asked, the moment Casey stepped through the door.
"She's asleep. Doctor Fraiser just started her on antibiotics. She's...she's badly bruised. I...Janet took those damned rings out of her. If she wants to be pierced, that's one thing. But those were...those were just tags!"
The older man nodded. "Do you think..."
Casey smiled. "Go sit with your daughter. When she wakes up, the two of you will have a lot to talk about. A lot of things to...work through."
He looked up at the ceiling as tears filled his eyes. Wiped them away with the heels of his hands. "Thank you." He glanced around at the other team members. "All of you."
"You're welcome," Daniel replied softly. "Go, be with your daughter."
With a nod, Ballard walked into the dimly lit infirmary. Settled onto a stool beside the bed where his little girl...now a beautiful woman, lay sleeping.
"I don't know about all of you, but I'm beat," Jack said, unable to hold back a yawn.
"Me, too," Sam said.
"Let's get some sleep. We deserve it," Jack said.
Together the five walked toward the elevator. "Hey, Case?"
"If you get any premonitions, keep 'em to yourself for the next eight or nine hours," Jack said.
"Unless it's like, really important."
"Define really important," the slender blonde said.
"You're a smartass," Jack snorted.
"You love me anyway," she retorted.
"I will deny that if ever asked."
"Deny it all you want. It's the truth."
"It is so not."
"It is so so."
"That didn't even make sense."
"Yes it did."
"No it didn't."
"Bite me, Jack."
"Not my job. Have to get Daniel to do that."
"Now who's the smartass?"
Sam, Daniel, and Teal'c grinned. Followed the two onto the waiting lift. Within fifteen minutes all five members of SG-1 were sound asleep. General Hammond left orders that they were not to be disturbed. Debriefing could wait until the premier team had rested. After all, they'd just saved the planet...again.
A A A A A A
Harry Maybourne sipped at his Pina Colada, watched three very lovely young ladies in very tiny bikinis for a few minutes, then turned his attention back to the laptop computer beside him. He watched as the list continued to scroll. "Simmons, you dirty bastard," he whispered. Then grinned. This was something that certain people, in a certain place in a certain Rocky Mountain state would find quite interesting. Working with the good guys was kind of fun. Especially when it meant taking down his own enemies. He made copies of the reports. Dropped one of the CD's into a photo mailer. And addressed it. Without a doubt 'Hutch' would be getting a message from 'Starsky'. He grinned again.
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