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Independence Day

"...Suddenly you're in this fight
Steppin' out into the great
by Leann Rimes

Chapter 1

Casey opened her eyes to darkness, reached for him. The bed was empty. She tossed back the blankets. The cradle was empty as well. She pulled on her robe and padded barefoot into the living room. He was there, in the rocking chair that had been a gift from her parents. Emily was asleep against his bare chest. His head was back, his eyes closed. She hadn’t even heard the baby fuss. She smiled, took the empty bottle from his hand, sat it on the coffee table. She gently lifted her daughter from his arms, kissed the tiny cheek. She let her finger trail over his whisker-stubbled jaw, smiled when he turned his face and captured her fingertip with his lips.

"I was hoping you would be able to get a little more sleep," he whispered.

"I got cold," she said, a smile on her lips. "Let’s go back to bed."

Daniel smiled, and pulled himself to his feet. "Good idea."

Emily was settled in her cradle, she had barely stirred when Casey laid her down. Now she was back in bed and cuddled against him, her head on his shoulder, his arm holding her close. She smiled against his skin.

"What?" he asked softly.

"I’m so happy it scares me," she admitted softly.

"I know, babe," he replied. "Sleep now, Angel." He kissed the top of her head, and within seconds was breathing slow and steady.

She snuggled just a little closer, closed her eyes, and let sleep overtake her once again.




Emily woke again shortly before six a.m., and Casey had her changed and fed before the alarm in the bedroom went off at six-thirty. She settled the baby back in her cradle, then went to the bed. She leaned down and kissed Daniel. His arms came up around her, pulled her down on top of him.

"Morning, gorgeous," he said sleepily.

"Morning, handsome," she replied. "Emmie just finished eating. I’m going to take a shower. Coffee’s ready," she said. She kissed him again.

"Babe, you’ll have to go to the grocery store today. The only thing in the house is coffee, and that’s because I was here a couple of days ago," he admitted.

Casey giggled. "I know. I was going to have a cup of coffee, but there’s no milk. I’ll ask Tessa to take me after I see Doctor Montigue."

"I planned on going the store, I just didn’t get a chance," Daniel told her. "I was coming here right after I talked to Angus and the other village leaders. Emily kinda interrupted that plan."

"It’s okay, my heart. You’ve already done so much for me. Just having this house, my little house, is more than enough," she said, running her fingers over his chest. "Grocery shopping is no big deal. Besides, I need to learn my way around Hope." The residents of Gamma had voted to name the small town for what it offered - hope to the billions of innocents at risk from Goa’uld, and the other dangers that threatened their very existence. She stood up. "Get your coffee, my love, I won’t be long."

Casey was humming in the shower when Daniel came in a few minutes later. He kissed her when he entered the shower as she got out. She dried her hair, then hurried to check on her daughter. She smiled, watching Emily’s little mouth making sucking motions, golden eyelashes fluttering against her cheeks.

The phone in the kitchen rang, startling her. The ring had a different tone than what she was used to. She grabbed it before it could wake the baby. "Hello?"

"Good morning, Casey, I hope I’m not calling too early," Tessa said.

"No, not at all," Casey replied. She was dying for a cup of coffee. She eyed Daniel’s cup, took a sip, wrinkled her nose. "How early do the grocery stores open here?"

"We have one that is twenty-four hour. It caters mostly to the human…um…Tau’ri… population of town. I’ll be glad to take you, after you see the doctor."

"Tessa, that would be perfect. I can’t stand coffee without milk," she giggled. "Maybe I should call Sam and see if she needs to go as well," she said.

"Good idea," Tessa replied. "I thought I’d come get you in about thirty minutes. Duncan left earlier than usual this morning. It seems that most of the SGC personnel left during the night and followed General Hammond to the Alpha site. The general is thrilled, and wants to get SG-1 together and make plans as soon as possible. Duncan agrees with him."

"Daniel is in the shower. He’ll be on his way shortly," Casey said. "I’ll get put together, and we’ll be waiting for you."

"Great. I’m so glad you’re here," Tessa said softly.

"I am too, Tessa," she replied. "I was terrified that I wouldn’t like it here, but this feels more like home than I ever could have imagined. Although the very familiar surroundings could have something to do with that."

Tessa giggled. "I’m so glad you’re happy, Casey. Daniel was adorable, wanting everything to be just perfect for you. He kept saying that he wasn’t about to tear you from the house you loved so much. That man loves you, girlfriend."

Casey smiled. "I know. Almost as much as I love him. Thank you so much for all that you’ve done for us. Oh, Daniel’s finished now. See you in a little while."

"Yes, in a little while. Bye."


A  A  A  A  A  A


Dr. Montigue was a kind man, older than most of the Immortals around him. His first death hadn’t occurred until he had been involved in an accident at the age of fifty. He gave her a thorough examination. "Well, Casey, there isn’t anything physically to indicate that you’ve ever been pregnant, much less delivered a healthy child," he told her as he washed his hands.

"Well, my nipples are a little darker," she confessed.

The doctor laughed. "I imagine that is something only you, your husband and Doctor Williams would know. I'm going to clear you for duty. Although I imagine you’re going to want to stay home with Emily for awhile."

Casey smiled. "With all of the available babysitters, I doubt that I’ll stay home too long. I’m really rather anxious to get back to work."

"Pregnancy kept you down, did it?" Dr. Montigue laughed. "Doctor Williams indicated in his notes that you are a very active woman. Now, let’s just take a look at Miss Emily, and see how she’s doing." He picked the baby up. "It’s a shame that you can’t nurse. I’ve always felt breast-feeding is best for the baby. What kind of bottle are you using?"

"Playtex Nursers," Casey replied. "I was only able to nurse her three times before the milk was gone. Is there anyway to counter that for future Immortal pregnancies?"

"We’re looking into it. We’re getting close to a break-through on the fertilization problem, thanks to the blood we’ve been able to use from you and Colonel Carter. Playtex Nursers are wonderful. Shaped like mommy, and disposable bags make them convenient and sterile. The Terrans have a product that is identical, I’m sure the bags will fit the bottles you brought from Earth. This little lady is very healthy. She looks good for less than thirty hours old. I’d like to see her again tomorrow."

Casey nodded.

"I’ll let you get dressed now. It was nice to meet you, Casey. Welcome to Hope. See you tomorrow."

"It was nice to meet you, Doctor Montigue, and thanks. See you tomorrow."

Tessa and Casey waited while Dr. Montigue examined Sam. She came out of the office with a smile on her face.

"We get our ultrasound next week," Sam said, excitement danced in her eyes. She looked at Emily. "Can I hold her?"

Casey smiled. "Sure." She grinned as Sam cuddled the baby. "So, is there anywhere to get a cup of coffee and some breakfast?"

Tessa smiled. "Hope is like most small towns in America, Casey. We have several restaurants. My favorite is a cafe called Curly’s. Curly happens to be a bald Immortal."

The women laughed, and went to breakfast. The arrival of SG-1 was a major event for the small community, and everyone was eager to make the acquaintance of the team members. By the time Casey returned home from the grocery store, she had already met at least twenty people. Because she had to stock up on everything, the store manager had insisted that she allow him to have the groceries delivered. The two stock boys who brought the bags of groceries into the house were in awe that they were meeting a real member of SG-1. Casey joked with them, then gave them a nice tip. Daniel had already exchanged all their currency for what was used on Gamma, had even set up all of their new bank accounts as well.

Before she could get everything put away she had to stop and feed Emily. She sat in the rocking chair, watching her daughter, her heart swelling with love and pride. She smiled as she rocked. Life on Gamma was going to be very, very good.

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