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Casey sat in the dark, stared out at the lights that twinkled in the night. She'd awakened suddenly, feeling as if someone had stabbed a knife into her heart. She'd tried to reach out, tried to see if she could feel him, just to know that he was safe. But there had been nothing. She felt alone, frightened…blind. She'd always been able to sense things. Now…it was as if someone had thrown a dark blanket over her. A thought continued to try and form, but each time she moved to examine it, the thought seemed to dissipate.
She sighed, stood, began to pace. Something was wrong. She was losing Daniel. That was the only thing she was sure of. She didn't know how, but she knew that when he did come back through the Stargate, things would never be the same. She dropped back down onto the sofa. Where they'd made love at least a dozen times. Tears began to fall, and she continued to sit alone in the dark, her heart breaking as she felt Daniel move farther and farther away from her. She should have known that it wouldn't last. Nothing as beautiful, as wonderful as her life with him could last. Not for her. She looked around her. She'd take only what she'd arrived with. Nothing more.
"This is not right!"
"I know. But we are forbidden to interfere."
"Why should we be forbidden, when They have? It is an attempt to weaken The One! They know that with his Beloved at his side, he cannot be defeated!"
She contemplated this for a moment. "Come. We will seek permission to…guide…The One."
Satisfied smiles were exchanged just before they moved toward the Place of the Gathering.
A A A A A A
Daniel opened his eyes. He was lying on a bed. He felt her beside him. "'Morning, Angel," he whispered, rolling to his side. He froze. Osiris was staring up at him. When he tried to move away from her, she grabbed his arm.
"Good morning, Daniel." It was Sarah's voice.
"Sarah?" Images flashed through his memory, images of making love to her, in this room, in this bed. He shook his head.
"Yes, it's me. I don't know how, or why, but the Goa'uld is…well, I think it's dying," she said softly.
Alarm bells went off in his mind. "No. That's not possible. If the Goa'uld was dying, you'd be dying too. This is just a trick." He managed to pull away from her. He bit back a groan when he realized he was naked. He'd held onto the brief hope that those images had been planted. He looked around for his clothes. Shit! If she had his clothes, then she had the radio! He glanced around. They were on a planet. Somewhere. If he could just get to a 'gate, Casey would know it was him coming through…
"I have your things. We'll go through the Chappa'ai together, we'll be together again," Sarah said.
"No. Sarah and I haven't been together for years. We broke up long before I started working at the SGC. Long before you took over her body." He refused to believe he was talking to Sarah. Was certain that it was the Goa'uld who was still firmly in control.
Gray eyes flashed gold with anger. "You will do as I say!" the dual voice said coldly. She crawled out of the bed, reached for a metal box. Inside were several vials, and syringes.
He had no doubt that what she was about to inject him with was not the serum that mimicked his wife's sweet pheromones! Casey! Osiris didn't know about Casey! He planned to keep it that way, otherwise the bastard in Sarah's body would try to find her, hurt her. Take her. He continued to back away, until he felt the wall behind him. He struggled, felt the needle pierce his skin. In seconds a fog began to surround his mind. Sarah smiled, and helped him get dressed.
"We'll go home now," she whispered, handing him his radio and GDO.
"Everything will be okay, I promise," he whispered in return, pulling her into his arms and holding her close. Sarah. He'd found Sarah! He'd get her to the Tok'ra. The goddamned Goa'uld would be taken out of her. And then they'd be all right.
The Chappa'ai was almost a full day's walk from where they were. This planet was isolated; the palace where they'd spent four days while Osiris kept the Tau'ri drugged and believing he was with Sarah, was seldom used. The slaves that remained there were loyal, and would never reveal that their god had been in residence at any time.
Gray eyes watched with concern as Daniel began to shiver, then shake. The day was cool, even with the exercise of the walk he shouldn't be sweating so much. Osiris had been extremely careful with the dosage of the drug he'd used. He wanted the Tau'ri pliable - susceptible to the suggestions that he and Sarah were still lovers; wanted him cooperative as Sarah made love to him, but still able to follow instructions. Certainly wanted the Tau'ri able to show him all the secrets of the SGC. He frowned, the crease between Sarah's eyebrows deep as he continued to watch his prisoner. Perhaps the feeble human was ill. Well, no matter. Once in the SGC, their doctors would be able to deal with the problem. And Daniel Jackson would tell his dear Sarah everything. He searched through his hosts' memories for any mention of a 'Casey', and found none. The name had been on the Tau'ri's lips often during the time that the man slept with the aid of a nothing more than a light sedative. Just another detail that needed his attention. But taking over the SGC, and ultimately Earth, the First World, would be worth the minor inconveniences!
A A A A A A
The inner ring of the Stargate began to move. The first chevron had locked when the klaxons began to wail. General Hammond hurried to the control room. Jack, Sam, and Teal'c were there by the time the last symbol had locked in.
"It's Doctor Jackson's IDC, sir," Sgt. Davis reported.
"Open the iris," General Hammond said. He followed SG-1 to the 'gate room. Jacob had reported that sometime during the second night on Yu's ship, Osiris had managed to kidnap Daniel. Jacob/Selmak hadn't seen the small shuttle that had left Yu's ship until it was too late. The shuttle had been equipped with hyperdrive engines, and had disappeared before the Tok'ra could confirm that Daniel was indeed missing. They'd had no word for four days. The Tok'ra was still at the SGC, waiting with the rest of those in the secret military base to hear from the young archaeologist.
Daniel was shaking so hard he could barely walk. He didn’t realize how pale he was, or that he was sweating so much that it was running down his face. It took every bit of effort he could muster to keep his arm around Sarah. When he realized he was in the 'gate room of the SGC, he crumpled to the metal grid of the ramp, taking the slim woman down with him. "Help her," he gasped. "Tok'ra…they can get that damned thing out of her!"
"Get a medical team down here stat!" the general barked.
When the order came through, Janet grabbed what she was certain would be needed. As soon as she saw him, she knew that she'd been right. She jabbed the needle into his bare arm and pushed the plunger. With luck, the serum would take affect before his body went into full-blown withdrawal.
Daniel and Sarah were both loaded onto gurneys and rushed to the infirmary. Janet had Casey paged, knowing that the young woman would want to be with her husband as soon as possible. No doubt he'd be demanding to see her as soon as he could speak coherently.
"Sarah!" Daniel cried out.
"She's fine," Janet said.
He tried to raise up. Saw the gurney, and had a glimpse of strawberry blonde hair. Closed his eyes with relief and dropped back down. She was going to be okay. They'd get the snake out of her, and everything would be okay. A memory of long blonde hair and big green eyes flashed through his mind, but he was too exhausted to take note of it. He pushed it away, and concentrated on Sarah.
Osiris grinned inwardly. Too easy. Much too easy. He didn't even notice the stirring of the host as he congratulated himself.
Janet ordered Sarah put into a five-point harness restraint, in spite of Daniel's vehement objections. She was ordering him sedated when the rest of SG-1, and General Hammond, raced through the door. She had a glimpse of the team before her attention was pulled back to the man who continued to fight them. Daniel had certainly been working out, she thought grimly, trying to hold his arm steady so that he could be restrained as well. "I want blood taken and analyzed stat!" she called out. Daniel was not behaving rationally, and there had to be an extraneous reason. She continued to hold his arm as one of the nurses drew the blood. "Daniel, relax, stop fighting us!"
Casey slid to a stop, felt the pain that had filled her for the past week rise up in her chest again, sharp and deep. The infirmary was a hive of activity. Daniel continued to try to get to Sarah, calling her name, pushing away anyone who came near him. Sarah was calling back, it appeared that she was trying to get to him. Medics and nurses swarmed around the two, attempting to sedate and strap down both patients.
"Casey, talk to him, calm him down," Janet said, hoping that it would calm the young blonde down as well. She looked as if she were about to fall apart.
With a nod…shoving her fears, her pain aside…Casey hurried to the bed where two medics were trying to strap him in. "Daniel, relax, it's okay, everything is okay. Janet will take good care of her," she said softly, reaching out to touch his cheek.
Jacob Carter entered the room at that moment. Daniel's eyes locked on the man. "Get away, damn it!" he cried, shoving Casey away. Her slender body impacted with the wall roughly. He bolted from the bed, managed to push the nurses away from Sarah's side, who'd been struggling as well, the strength of the Goa'uld inside her keeping the people around her from being able to contain her. He scooped Sarah into his arms, ran toward the Tok'ra host. "We have to go now, before Osiris kills her!" Without waiting to see if the man was following, he ran down the corridor toward the elevator.
"He's right," Jacob said. Selmak was already certain that the host was battling Osiris. "We have to get the procedure started immediately." Without another word he followed the distraught young man.
Janet looked over at Casey. "Oh, god," she whispered. She grabbed Jack's arm.
Jack bit back a curse as he watched the light slowly fade from wide green eyes. The pain was so deep it was tangible. He walked over, tried to pull her into an embrace. She pulled away from him, wrapped her arms around her narrow waist. "He didn't mean it," he said softly.
"Yes, he did," Casey replied. "I should have known," she added, her voice barely audible.
"Should have known what?" Jack asked, frowning slightly.
The sound klaxons split the air. The walls in the corridor reflected the red lights that flashed from the strobes on the walls. Daniel, and Sarah, Osiris, whoever was actually in control now, and Jacob had just left the SGC.
Casey shook her head. "It's not important. How long will Daniel be there?"
Sam was standing next to Janet. "Two, three days probably, if he stays for the entire procedure."
The young woman nodded. More than enough time. "I think I'm going to go…now," she said. She almost said 'home', but she'd known in the moment that Daniel shoved her away, reaching for Sarah, that the apartment had ceased being her home. For all intents and purposes, she was now homeless. And jobless. There was no way she could continue to work here, not knowing that she'd see him…see them. She'd always thought pictures of New Mexico were pretty… She glanced at her watch. Just enough time before the doors were closed for the day.
Jack, Sam, and Janet watched her walk out of the infirmary as if she were in a daze. "I'm not so sure we should leave her alone," Sam said softly.
"I don't think she'll let us near her," Janet replied perceptively. "I just hope she isn't so hurt that she does something drastic."
"Aw, she knows that Daniel loves her," Jack said. "Once she thinks about it for a bit, she'll understand that he was just upset, and desperate to get the snake out of Sarah."
"Yes," Janet replied. "Out of his former girlfriend."
Jack frowned. "Does she know that?"
Sam nodded. "Seems that she and Daniel have absolutely no secrets."
"Oy!" He ran his hand through his hair. "I'll stop on my way home. Just to make sure she's okay."
The two women nodded. The lab tech who'd helped Janet draw blood from Daniel hurried to the petite doctor. "We have a problem," he said, handing the result sheet to her.
Janet scanned the information. She'd seen the same results before, in the blood tests run on the young people who'd been part of Seth's cult. "Oh, no," she moaned.
"What?" Sam asked immediately, a frown creasing her brow.
"Daniel's system is nearly overloaded with a chemical that causes a person to become susceptible to suggestion."
Sam's frown deepened. "He had no idea who Casey was!"
"I'd say that Osiris has him believing that he and Sarah are still a couple. He probably believes that she came with him to work here at the SGC," Janet said.
"How can we help him?" Jack asked quietly.
"The only way that Daniel will continue to believe what he was told is if he continues to be injected with this drug. Once it's out of his system, his own memories will take over. He'll probably never remember most of what has happened while he was drugged, and he'll have one hell of a headache for a couple of days," the petite doctor replied.
"What about his addiction to Casey?"
"I managed to give him a fairly large dose. He'll have to have another dose no later than tomorrow evening," Janet told the colonel.
General Hammond frowned. "Take what you need, go to Ravanna. Major Carter, please accompany her." He waited until the two women left the room. "Don't let her leave, Jack. If Daniel comes back and she's gone, I'm afraid we'll lose him as well," he said softly.
"I agree, sir. I'll talk to her, explain what's going on. Once she understands, she'll be demanding to get to him," Jack said, forcing a smile he didn't feel. He had the sinking feeling that they were in race against time, and they were starting late.
"I'm sure she will," the general agreed, his own smile weak.
A A A A A A
She looked around the room. The stop at the bank hadn't taken more than fifteen minutes. Not much left after all the purchases made for the house. Which waited in the storage unit in the parking garage. She'd stopped by a local moving and storage facility on her way to the apartment from the bank. It wouldn't take her long to pack what belonged to her. She deftly folded the boxes together, taped them with the strand tape she'd purchased with the packing boxes. The special containers for her Grandmother's crystal and china were in the storage closet in the garage, as well. It took her two trips to get them all. It had been hard to ignore the gallons of paint, the carefully wrapped blinds. The plastic covered rattan dining chairs - which had been purchased to use at the breakfast bar. She'd stopped to check the mail once, not realizing that Jerry would see what she was doing. She missed the look of concern that filled his eyes, reflected on his round face.
A A A A A A
It had been difficult. She'd been forced to stop packing twice, so that she wouldn't drop and break anything when the sobs refused to be held back. She hadn't even paid that much attention to what she tossed into her duffel and what she packed into the boxes. The silky teddies and nighty's she put into a trash bag. She'd never need them again. In her grief, however, she forgot to take it to the trash chute. She also forgot the few things that were in the dirty clothes hamper. She'd cried so hard she had a headache. But now, everything was ready. She was fairly certain that when she was ready to collect her things, that Janet or Sam would help her. She frowned. Then again, maybe not. They were Daniel's friends; they'd…accepted…her, because of, and for him. Well, she'd worry about that later. First she had to find someplace to go. Then she'd worry about moving her things.
The doorbell broke the silence around her. Two men from the moving and storage company were there for the boxes. She signed the paperwork, was assured that the lock she'd purchased, to which she had the only key, would be put on the door to the unit as soon as the boxes were safely inside.
She stopped at the doorway to his office. Forced herself to walk in. She had to do this. The last thing that had to be done before she left. Couldn't stop the tears that began to roll down her cheeks again.
Her fingers shook as she pulled the platinum card from her wallet and laid it on the desk. She wiped the tears from her cheeks, then pulled the rings from her fingers. The sobs came harder as she thought about the day that Daniel had bought them for her, the love that had filled his eyes when he'd proposed in that rental car. Tears dripped from her jaw as she thought about their wedding…when he'd slipped the band onto her finger. She placed them on top of the credit card. The copies of the keys he'd had made for her - to the apartment and to the jeep - went beside them. She pulled his legal pad toward her. Let her fingers run over it, knowing that he'd held it in his hands.
Pain, anger, fear…all tormented her, filled her heart and mind.
She read what she'd written. Shook her head, tore the sheet from the pad, wadded it up and tossed it into the trashcan. She took a deep breath.
Again she shook her head. Tore the sheet from the pad, crumpled it and tossed it.
She carefully arranged the credit card, rings and keys on the note, so that he'd be certain to see it.
She wondered briefly if he'd take Sarah to P5X 201, and have her made Immortal. He was, after all, The One. Certainly if he requested that such a thing be done, the Beings who had granted SG-1 Immortality, and bestowed upon him the power of The One, would be willing to do so.
She stood up, wandered through the apartment one last time. Paradise. For a few short months she'd found paradise here. More happiness than she'd ever believed she could have. Obviously it had not been meant for her. She wiped the tears from her face, grabbed her purse and the duffel, pulled the door closed behind her. When she heard the lock click into place, she bit back the sobs that threatened to overtake her. It was over. Forever.
Jerry watched, his heart breaking, as Casey crawled into the cab he'd hailed for her. She was carrying her purse and a duffel. He'd seen the boxes of things loaded into the van, had known that she was leaving with no more than what she'd arrived with. He wondered where the hell Dr. Jackson was, and what the hell he thought he was doing! Did he have any idea what a great woman he was letting slip away?
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