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Have Faith in Love
Daniel wrote out his report. He spared nothing. Let the damned Tok’ra deal with what their distrust of Casey had done to her. Jack, Teal'c, and Duncan had done the same. Jacob Carter and Selmak had been left in the dark about the threats made to Duncan if Casey were told, knew nothing about her torment. Selmak spent two hours venting at the Council when they found out. She had demanded that the Council apologize, in person, to the young Tau’ri.
It was the first time Casey had ever been to the Tok’ra base. The others had visited the various bases over the years she had worked with SG-1, it just seemed that whenever the Tok’ra called, she was left off of the invitation list.
She was clinging tightly to Daniel’s hand when they entered the Council Chambers. She looked around, her anger barely concealed. Her eyes came to rest on the man sitting in the center chair.
Talek, the new leader of the Tok’ra High Council, watched her for several moments before speaking. Her gaze did not waver from his. "We were distressed to hear that the mission your husband was on caused you such grief. It was never our intention that you should suffer."
Casey raised her chin. "Bullshit. You don’t give a damn about Daniel, or me or any of the others. Just as long as you get what you want. You’d probably be a lot happier if I had succeeded in offing myself, since you’re still hung up on that incident years ago, right after I was freed from Garantua…uh…Wepwawet."
Garshaw shook her head. "That is not true. Selmak explained that you had just been freed from Goa’uld slavery, and that you did not know of the Tok’ra. Your actions, under the circumstances, were understandable."
She looked from Garshaw to Talek and back again. "Better inform your buddy, there. He’s still carrying a grudge." She paused, looking from one face to the next. "I just have to know, do you expect all of your operatives to sleep with Goa’uld for the information they get, or do they all carry that handy dandy little drug that helps them out of that? You know, the one that you should have made sure Daniel had before he went on the mission, rather than in the middle of it, considering the circumstances. The one you didn’t give him?"
The members of the council looked at each other, then at Casey. They were obviously displeased...and uncomfortable...with her questions. None of them would meet her eyes.
She shook her head. "I’ve always suspected that you’re too damn close to being Goa’uld to be trusted. This last mission proved it to me. You care nothing about the people you involve in your schemes. You use us, just as the Goa’uld use the Jaffa. You may think you’re better than they are, but you’re not. A snake is a snake. If you think you’re pissed about a flesh wound I gave one of your operatives, just wait until you find out how pissed I am about how you used Daniel."
Talek stared at her. "Do you threaten us?"
"Let’s just say that those of you sitting up there had better make damned sure I’m never behind you in the heat of a battle," she spat angrily.
"We have a treaty with your people, we expect you to honor it," Talek said, his voice hard.
"We intend to. The exact same way you're honoring it," Duncan said. His eyes were as cold as his voice. "We are expected to share information on everything we find, yet the Tok’ra share only what they wish to share, when they wish to share it. Like Casey said, you use us in the same manner that the Goa’uld use the Jaffa. We do the dirty work for you. She’s also right about that drug. Why wasn’t it given to Daniel before the mission? Just what were you after? Why would you sit back and let her suffer like that? Or is that what you wanted all along? Is that why you didn’t tell us about the extra Jaffa at the gate? So that she'd have to see Daniel with that Goa’uld bitch? Is this your way of exacting a pound of flesh for a mistake, an innocent mistake, made years ago?"
"We do not have to sit here and listen to this!" Talek retorted, the volume of his voice going up slightly.
"You damned well will sit there and listen!" Daniel said coldly. "I went undercover for you, found out more in ten days than your operative did in three years. I had to do things that I never wanted to do, never should have had to do. Things that I wouldn’t have had to, if you seen fit to give me all the…tools…I needed for the job. I’ll spend the rest of my life trying to make up to Casey for what happened. Maybe it’s just because you don’t know how to love, don’t have a clue what love is that you didn’t…don’t care."
Talek shook his head. "We love just as deeply as you, Tau’ri."
"Then put yourself in Casey’s place…or mine," Daniel said. Once again the individual members refused to make eye contact with the Tau’ri.
He took the crystals from his pocket, held them up so they could be seen. Sam had already copied every bit of the information onto discs, which were safe on Gamma. "You wanted this information so badly…what are you willing to do for it, what are you willing to sacrifice?" He looked at each member of the council, staring at them until they broke away from his angry gaze. The council members jumped when he took the crystals and slammed them onto the table. "That’s the last thing that we’ll ever be giving you. From now on, you want information, find it on your own."
"We can say the same thing to you," Talek said smugly.
Duncan shrugged. "We’re allied with the Jaffa, and others, and their intel has been more precise and up to date than anything you have given us." While that wasn’t necessarily true, it gave him great pleasure to say it.
The council members looked at each other. The Tok’ra were small in number, there weren’t many of them left. They needed the Tau’ri to do the dangerous work. They also needed those tidbits of information, and that unique human perspective, to keep them ahead of the Goa’uld.
Garshaw looked at Casey, tried to smile. "We beg your forgiveness, Mrs. Jackson. You have suffered greatly, and it is our fault. You are correct, we should have seen to it that Doctor Jackson was fully...prepared…for this mission. I…we…can only hope that you will not hold against your husband what he found necessary to do while undercover as an operative."
"You know, it’s not the sex thing that bothers me so much. I mean it bothers me, but this whole trust issue has me really pissed off. How dare you treat me as if I’m some uncontrollable child! I have never put my personal feelings, including anger, or in some cases, rage, before the mission! I have never jeopardized a mission! The safety of every team member, accomplishing our objective is the number one priority. You never even offered me a chance to prove myself. Well, let me tell you something, that distrust goes both ways. I will do everything in my power to see that Daniel, and SG-1, and Gamma, and our allies never have to put themselves in harms way for your sorry asses again."
Talek and Garshaw exchanged a glance. "Your attitude is not-" Talek started.
"Her attitude is exactly what anyone would expect, given the way she’s been treated," Selmak said coldly. Jacob was standing in the doorway.
Casey looked over and smiled. "Selmak, I want you to know that any snake comments I make totally exclude you."
Selmak smiled. "That is very generous of you, Casey."
"You’ve always tried to treat us fairly, and as if we’re more than just…lo’taur, or Jaffa," Casey said softly.
The members of the council began to grumble among themselves.
Casey looked up at them. "There’s a saying on Earth. It goes like this: If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and walks like a duck, then it’s a duck. You’re all dangerously close to being ducks."
Selmak waited for Jacob to explain, then turned to the council and translated what Casey had said. Again the council shifted uncomfortably, and grumbled between themselves.
"This gets us nowhere," Talek complained. "We have offered our apology. If Mrs. Jackson chooses not to accept-"
"Every damned one of you owes her an apology," Daniel replied.
Selmak took Casey’s hand. "Casey, I for one am outraged at the treatment you received from the Tok’ra Council. Please accept my sincerest apologies."
"Selmak, you’re the only one in this room who doesn’t owe any apologies," Casey replied, laying her hand gently on Jacob’s cheek for a brief moment. She looked up at Daniel. "I’m really tired of all this posturing. Let’s just go home. I’ve been away from Emily too much lately as it is."
Daniel lifted her fingers to his lips. "Just a minute, Angel. You’re owed some apologies, and you’re going to get them."
Casey shook her head. "I have two…and I have the feeling it will be a cold day in hell before there are any more. I’m not going to stand here until hell freezes over. I don’t care what the rest of you do. I’m going home. Selmak, Jacob, it was great to see you. I’ll work with you any time." She lifted Daniel’s hand to her lips, then slipped away from him.
He watched as she walked out the door, her head held high. "Jack told me not to expect much from you. He was right." He shook his head with disgust, then followed his wife.
Duncan looked at Talek. "Don’t call us. We’ll call you." He turned and followed the other two out of the chambers.
Selmak turned to look at the Council. "Once, we pulled out of an alliance with the Tau’ri because we were too rigid to change our ways. That decision cost us dearly. If we lose Gamma as allies, we will also lose Beta and Alpha. The Tau’ri are strong allies. We can’t fight this battle without them. Our very survival may depend on them. You all know that as well as I do. I suggest that you think about how we’re going to make this up to them."
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