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My Name Is Casey
So much has happened in the past few minutes that my mind is spinning. To see Her...to finally understand who...what...I am. I was created to take her place. I’m not even real! No, no...I’m me! I can think and feel and love...and I’m learning just what ‘hate’ truly means. I’m not a thing! I’m more than that...I know I am...I am ME!
There’s something...I can feel it moving in my mind...a feeling of calm...a sense of understanding what my purpose in all of this is...
I was created in a laboratory. But I’m every bit as human as She is. And I have a Destiny, just as She does. I know that...I know that!
The clone entered the small room where the Jaffa led her. The numbness of shock was fading. In its place, understanding. Now her lack of memories made sense. She had no memories before waking up in that laboratory, because she hadn’t existed before that time.
Those memories...the first ‘awareness’...flooded back into her mind. Voices, neither cruel nor kind, discussing her as if she were nothing more than...
A clone. Created in a laboratory to Ba’al’s specifications. An imitation...a copy.
"You are far more than that."
She spun around, expecting to see the woman...whoever she might be...whose voice had echoed so loudly around her. Found that only the Jaffa...her faithful guards...who stared at her. "You have served me well," she said softly.
The men shifted uncomfortably. They had been ordered to kill this woman, who looked so like the Tau’ri with whom Ba’al had become obsessed.
Giving a sad smile, she gently laid her hands on each man’s arm. "It’s all right. You must do what you were ordered to do."
Another glance was exchanged between them. "My Lady, I cannot," the older finally said, nearly gasping out the words.
"Then you must help me stop him. Before he destroys himself."Her confusion, her anger, prevented her from realizing how much her words revealed. She had yet to learn that love and hate were merely the opposite sides of the same, strong emotion. And were often entwined so tightly that it was impossible to separate the feelings.
The decision of the two warriors had been made in the span of a heartbeat, the agreement reached in a brief glance. Was recognized as a moment of change in their lives. "We will obey only you, My Lady," the Jaffa replied softly.
"Good. We may not have much time. Leave me here, I’ll be safe enough. I need to know who the intruders are...and why they’re here. And...I need to know what Ba’al has planned. He won’t hurt Her, I know that. It’s the others I’m concerned about. Be careful, and find out all that you can. Return to me with any news you can learn, as quickly as possible,"the clone said. Neither she nor her Jaffa stopped to consider that they were in as much danger as the prisoners in the holding cell. Nor did they realize the part they would play in the events about to unfold
With matching nods of understanding, the Jaffa slipped out the door, leaving her alone.
Arms wrapped around her narrow waist, she paced the small room, trying to gather her wildly spinning thoughts.
"You have a Destiny to fulfill. While your time has been short, you have learned well. Take what you know...and help those who deserve your assistance."
She didn’t even question the voice in her head. A voice she recognized...a voice that had offered her comfort when...when she had yet to wake up. The clone stopped abruptly, nearly stumbling as she came to terms with the significance of what she had just realized. When she had heard the others...the two scientists...their words had meant nothing to her. Once she had been able to put meaning to the words, she’d struggled to understand the context of the conversations. But the woman’s voice...even when she’d been unable to understand the words, she’d been able to discern the meaning...the emotions.
Putting her hands to her head, she began to pace again. So confused! She was so very confused! She wasn’t at all certain what she could do to help the prisoners that Ba’al had taken...
In a rush of sound, every word, every nuance that had been spoken, all that she had heard as she waited for her awakening began to play in her head. Clone. Merely an experiment that Ba’al wished to perform...complete success...they had achieved the goal of creating his Consort...they would be rewarded... She nearly gasped as one final discussion between the two scientists settled into her mind. One that she somehow understood had never been discussed with the System Lord...concerns that the scientists had kept to themselves. The process had been successful, but there was no guarantee that the clone would survive...only a few months perhaps, perhaps several years. More than enough of the needed DNA to create another clone, as their Master desired. The ability to create more of Her.
A clone. A replica. A whore for Ba’al to use to satisfy his need...his lust...for Her. Never more than that. He had believed Her to be dead. The clone would take Her place. Would serve him in a way that She never would.
"Damn you!"she hissed. Tears rolled down her cheeks unheeded. In her innocence, she didn’t realize that the heartbreak, the sense of betrayal, were due to the fact that she loved Ba’al...as deeply as he loved Casey.
The love he had shown her, that he had declared, had been real, the clone thought. Only because he was convinced that She was dead. All the love he had for Her, he had lavished upon his creation.
And that’s supposed to make me feel better? she thought bitterly. I’ve gone from ‘Beloved’ to ‘it’. How quickly one can fall from grace. And for what? I’ve tried to please him. Done all that he asked of me. I am what he made me.
"You are far more than that. Fulfill your Destiny," that soft voice insisted.
In the corner of the room, Three Beings watched in open-mouthed surprise. "They have become involved?" Second whispered, glancing around furtively, as if afraid of seeing the Higher Beings watching her.
"There must be a reason," First said, more to herself than to her companions.
"For what reason will it serve if The One is-" Third broke off. "He cannot fulfill his Destiny if he is made host to a Goa’uld."
First closed her eyes. Listened to the voices of those who instructed her. Smiled softly. "Things are not what they seem. He will learn much," she said cryptically.
A A A A A A
Mitchell sat in his chair...the new captain’s chair that had been installed during the brief return to Earth. "Are you sure?"
The comm tech nodded. "Yes, sir. SG-1 has been captured."
"Oh, hell," the colonel muttered. "Better let the general know.’
Hopefully the commander of the SGC would have an idea just what the hell he was supposed to do now.
A A A A A A
Casey didn’t have the energy to even give token protest when Gemeti began to undress her. Unless she could find a way out of this room, Daniel was about to become a Goa’uld host. "Daniel," she whispered, as tears filled her eyes.
The lo’taur looked up, recognizing the name, as well as the look of love that filled the deep green eyes. "My Lady, you must be ready when Ba’al returns."
Play along, her mind told her. Look for the first opportunity to escape. Then you can sneak to the holding cell, spring the team free, and ring back to the Daedalus...
Gemeti pulled a gown from the wardrobe, turned around and offered it to the slender blonde. Casey...the other Casey, her mind clarified, was always willing to dress for her Master, insisting that she look her very best for Lord Ba’al. She had several of this particular dress, it seemed to be her favorite. She had heard Lord Ba’al compliment her each time she wore it...
Black silk. Gold filigree embroidery. Exactly like the...Casey shuddered. The clone had been wearing a black silk dress...just like this one. The thought brought her up short. If she looked like the clone, would she be treated as the Consort she knew that Ba’al had declared the clone to be? Would she be able to order the Jaffa to take her to see the prisoners? At the very least, maybe she could move freely on the ship...
..."Take this one below. Destroy it."...
That cold, snake-hearted son of a bitch! Casey shoved the lo’taur, who was still holding the gown. The slave tumbled to the floor. Casey threw herself at the door, clawing at the controls in her haste to open it.
And came face to face with Ba’al.
"I hate you!"Fists punctuated her words as she hit him, her left hook slamming him into the wall.
Unprepared for the attack, Ba’al found himself sliding to the floor. "I will forgive you only once," he growled.
"I don’t give a damn if you never forgive me,"Casey hissed. She tried to take advantage of the fact that his personal guard had been caught as unaware as Ba’al had been, ducking between two of them, racing for the door. Nearly screamed with frustration when a large hand clamped around her arm. "Let me go!"
"There will be no pining for the Tau’ri,"Ba’al told her, his voice cold and firm. "You will witness The Taking, and then you will take your place at my side, as my Consort."
"Never gonna happen, snakeface," Casey spat. Lost her footing and landed on her ass when Ba’al backhanded her across the face.
"I tire of the battle, Casey. You will do as I command. I am your god."
"You are delusional, and you’re a freaking parasite! I hate you!"
Ba’al smirked slightly. "Perhaps in this moment. Soon enough you will love me as I love you."
"Not even if hell freezes over!" she cried.
"Put on the gown, Casey. Or do you wish my Jaffa to assist you?"Ba’al asked, one eyebrow raised slightly.
She didn’t dare look at Ensuat, who was, she noted with detached amusement, doing his best to avoid looking directly at her. Could she trust that this Jaffa rebel would be able to help her stop Ba’al? For just a second, her eyes moved to the tall warrior.
Brown eyes narrowed as he watched the slender blonde. Pulled a zat’nik’tel from the holster on his hip, whirled and fired on the leader of his personal guard. Ba’al had suspected that there were shol’va still serving on his ha’tak. Casey had just revealed one of them, unwittingly as it might have been.
Two more blasts filled the room with the smell of ozone, Casey’s cry of dismay echoed as well. The eyes of the remaining Jaffa guard widened in surprise to see their commander killed before their eyes.
One pair of dark eyes studied the slender blonde. Compared her to the woman who had been on the ship for several weeks. The order detailing the fate of that woman still ringing in his ears. Earlier events clicked into place in his mind. And with that discernment, doubts that he hadn’t realized existed began to grow at an alarming rate.
"There will be no ‘rescue’,"Ba’al said calmly. "Submit to your fate, Beautiful One."
Tears rolling down her cheeks, Casey felt her world tumble completely out of control Daniel is The One! This can’t be happening!
Gemeti gently led the weeping woman into the adjoining room. "You must dress, My Lady," she whispered.
Standing stiffly, her mind numb as her heart broke into a million pieces, Casey’s BDU was taken off her, and the gown slipped over her shivering frame.
A A A A A A
Daniel was stripped, his hands bound behind him once again, and he was led, naked and shaking, to the makeshift altar. His eyes moved frantically around the room, searching for any means of escape...hoping that one of the Jaffa jerking him closer to that damned table was a rebel who would help him.
Forced to his knees, he waited, wondering if Sha’re had had time to contemplate her fate. No, she hadn’t known what was about to happen to her when she’d been taken into that room. A small blessing, he thought. Better to not know what your fate was when facing infestation by a Goa’uld. He shuddered violently. This can’t be happening!
Sounds behind him alerted him to the fact that others were being brought in as well. Must be every damned slave on the ship, he thought, listening to the shuffling of feet.
He couldn’t help but smile. Jack had arrived. Sam and Teal’c as well, probably. Surely they’d be able to save him. Daniel glanced around. More Jaffa than he’d seen in a long time lined the perimeter of the bay. His teammates were probably bound, unarmed...unless there was a miracle of Biblical proportions in the next few minutes, things were really about to go to hell.
In spite of the fact that he’d been the recipient of a typical Jaffa beating and was hurting like hell, Jack had been struggling against the two Jaffa who held him, keeping a wary eye on the other two beside him, who were aiming their staff weapons at him. His special ops training had him surreptitiously looking around the room, trying to determine if escape would be possible. Felt his heart stop beating and drop to his feet when he saw Daniel, bare-assed and kneeling in front of that odd looking table. The old goat with the silk bathrobe was busy doing something...had a jar of some kind...
"Daniel Jackson is in great danger," Teal’c said, his voice strained with emotion. "The priest is holding a canopic jar."
"Oh, Holy Hannah," Sam breathed. Tears filled her eyes.
"We have to stop this," Jack insisted.
"We cannot, O’Neill." Teal’c looked pointedly at the dozen Jaffa who surrounded them. Six were holding each of the prisoners by the arms, the other half pointing staff weapons at them. To attempt escape would mean certain death. And the risk of having their Immortality exposed; or worse, their bodies disposed of in a manner from which not even their special gift could revive them.
When he looked over at the Jaffa, the tears on his dark, bloody cheeks told Jack all he needed to know. Teal’c never cried. Never. Not even when Casey had been missing for so long...or when Daniel had been declared dead... "I won’t accept this," he said flatly.
"I don’t think we have a choice, sir," Sam replied. Her voice quavered with emotion.
Casey struggled against the Jaffa who pulled her, forcing her to follow Ba’al. Noted peripherally that Gemeti was following as well. She swallowed the lump in her throat when she was led into the hanger bay. She had no clue where the gliders that would normally be lined up in the huge compartment might be. It was instead filled with slaves, and Jaffa, and...
With a cry of dismay, she wrenched her arms free, and raced to his side. Just before she could reach him, she was grabbed from behind. "Daniel!"
He lifted his face, looked at her, tried to smile. "I love you, Angel. Don’t you ever forget that."
"I love you," she replied, her voice echoing her grief...her fear.
The priest began to chant, his voice monotone as he recited the words of the blessings that were spoken at every Taking.
He hadn’t been paying close attention to the archaeologist. Ba’al wanted to impart the impression that this was nothing more than a routine Taking. He had just a glimpse of the mark on the broad chest. Was able to see it long enough to recognize that the symbols were of Casey’s name. The tattoo had not been there when he had held Jackson as his prisoner after Tieel Mogba had delivered Casey to him, Ba’al thought. He didn’t have time to wonder about when the work had been done. It didn’t matter. Soon Jackson would be gone...as good as dead...and Casey would belong to him, heart and body.
Daniel was yanked to his feet, shoved face first onto the altar. "I love you, Casey," he whispered.
Ba’al stood behind the makeshift altar, his hands raised, arms spread wide. "Bid farewell to this man as he was! Chosen by my wisdom as the god I am, this man will become greater than the human he is, a gift from my hand. "
Jack bit back the bile that filled his throat. Did his best to remain on his feet.. He had to stay strong...for Sam...for Teal’c...for Casey...for Daniel. Oh, god, Danny, how am I going to get you out of this?
"Even as this water washes away the dust of his travels, so does my grace wash away all the impurities of his heart,"Ba’al continued solemnly.
The priest poured water over Daniel, from his head to his feet.
Casey continued to struggle against the Jaffa who held her. "Ba’al, please...I’ll stay with you...let Daniel go, please!" she begged, as tears continued to drip from her jaw.
Ba’al held his hands out, and the priest reverently placed the canopic jar in his grasp. "Within this sacred vessel is the power, the strength that is Goa'uld. Known as Rihat, let this Goa’uld take that which is offered."
"No! Oh, goddess, no!" Casey cried out again.
The jar was opened, and the contents dumped onto his back. For a second, nothing happened...the creature lay still and silent. Then the symbiote raised its head, hissed, and brutally attacked, slithering into the waiting body.
Screams of pain filled the air, as Daniel struggled against the invasion. They mingled with the heartbreaking cries of his wife as she watched, helpless to stop what was happening.
The sudden silence was nearly deafening, and Daniel lay still as death on the altar.
"Daniel!" Casey shrieked, still trying to reach him, clawing against the hands that held her.
"Oh, fuck," Jack muttered, unaware of the tears on his cheeks.
Teal’c stood stoically, his own face wet.
Sam wept out loud, dropping to her knees.
Daniel’s head rose, and his eyes glowed gold from within...
To be continued...
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