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Sam and Tessa were sitting in the living room, glued to the TV. They had been watching the news, broadcast directly from the Prometheus. Casey put Emily into her cradle. "Daddy got us out of there just in time, Baby, he saved us. The NID would have taken me, and you, and only the gods know what those bastards would have done to us. Your Daddy is a brilliant, wonderful, courageous man, Emily. Don’t you ever forget that." She kissed the soft forehead, inhaled the sweet baby scent, then went to rejoin her friends.
"Marshall law has been declared in just about every country now," Sam told her as she settled into the overstuffed chair beside the fireplace.
"After that battle they just witnessed, maybe things will calm down faster," Casey said hopefully.
Tessa shrugged. "Right now there are religious leaders who are telling people that this has all been faked, that it’s merely an attempt to force ‘one-world-government’ on all the peoples of the planet."
"Gotta love religious fanatics," Casey murmured. "Nothing like spitting into the wind and then bitching cause you got wet!"
Sam chuckled at the analogy.
"Hey, at the first sign of trouble, those same religious leaders are going to demand that something be done. I respect all religions, and the people who follow or practice their faith. It’s the so-called ‘leaders’ that bug the hell out of me," Casey said.
"Already the greatest historians of the world are gathering to go through ancient history and match it up with what the SG program has discovered. It’s going to change a lot of things. And now that Immortals have been…exposed…a lot of questions about many of the prophets and saints and other religious icons will be asked," Tessa said.
Casey nodded. "Yep. I feel sorry for all those folks. We know first hand what it’s like to suddenly be dumped into the twilight zone. Those people are feeling confused and frightened. So much of what they’ve believed all of their lives has suddenly been turned upside down. Daniel has said for years that people have the right to know."
Sam nodded. "He’s said that from the beginning. He never did like the fact that the military was in charge, and basically looking only for information applicable for military uses. He didn’t like the politicians either."
"Now that’s an understatement if I’ve ever heard one," Casey laughed. "Daniel rates politicians right up there with the Goa’uld."
The women fell silent as the news anchor broke in to tell the people of Alpha, Beta and Gamma about the meeting that was going on with Earth leaders.
Casey gasped as she watched Duncan thrust his sword into Daniel. She knew that he would be okay. That didn’t make it easy to watch him die. She watched the faces of the men and women around the table. "Damned politicians aren’t going to believe their own eyes. Mark my words," she grumbled.
A A A A A A
On the Prometheus, Daniel gasped and sat up. He looked around, re-oriented himself, then went to sit in the seat he had been in. His shirt had a gaping hole in it, and was soaked with blood, but it was obvious to everyone who looked at him that the skin beneath the shirt was unbroken.
The President of Spain shook his head. "This is nothing more than a carefully rehearsed act."
Jack jumped to his feet. "Think so, huh? Okay, here, take this!" He gave his side arm to the man. "Check it out, make sure it’s real. Then shoot me."
Several of the leaders carefully examined the shells, and agreed that they were indeed real. The Spanish President took aim, and shot Jack in the chest. When the gray haired general sat up a few minutes later, no one in the room had any further doubts.
Daniel shook his head. He could have been spared some major pain if Jack had just done that to begin with, he thought. He looked around at the faces of the politicians around him. Most of them had done nothing else in their lives, they were all career politicians. The people of Earth deserved better. Unfortunately, for now, this was what they had.
"Now what?" President Taylor of the United States asked.
"Now, Mr. President, we hammer out a treaty," Daniel replied.
"Don’t you feel the least bit of remorse, the least bit of guilt, for betraying your country?" Taylor asked him.
Daniel shook his head. "You’ve read the mission reports, sir. You know as well as I do that there is more at stake here than just the US. To be perfectly frank with you, no, I don’t feel one bit of remorse or guilt. I didn’t betray my country. The leaders of my country betrayed me. They left me with no other choice. The protection of my Wife and daughter is my first priority. When you, and the Joint Chiefs, refused to rein in the NID, when you allowed them to continue as an entity even when you admitted distrust in them yourself, you gave me no choice. We both know that they found out about Casey’s Immortality. They were on their way to SGC to take her when we left. We were lucky that Emily was born when she was, and not two hours later. You and I both know that those bastards would have taken Casey and they would have cut her into tiny pieces to figure out what made her Immortal. They would do the same to my daughter if they had the chance. Tell me, Mr. President, if your family was threatened in that manner, what would you do?"
Silence filled the room. Several of the leaders from smaller nations looked at the US President with something akin to disgust.
"The members of the Oversight Committee have all of our mission reports. Either they don’t believe them, or they don’t care about anything more than their own political careers. Whatever the reason, they left me with no choice. I told the Senate Oversight committee two years ago that if they didn’t think funding the one program that was keeping the entire planet free from Goa’uld enslavement was worth the money, I would take my Wife and leave," Daniel continued. "A week ago that committee met again, in secret. And decided that they 'had' to cut back funding of the SGC. I meant what I said. I will never again live on Earth. I don’t trust any of you, or those who will be just like you and follow in your footsteps, to ever do what really needs to be done. I know what’s out there. I’ve seen it. I’ve fought the Goa’uld. My Wife was a slave to one of those monsters. Thankfully for the people of Earth, there are those who will protect them. As Duncan said earlier, we’ll protect Earth out here. It’s up to you to protect yourselves on the surface."
"Wouldn’t it be better to have Immortals at the SGC to protect us?" The speaker was a tall woman, one of the leaders from Denmark.
Daniel shook his head. "No. Immortals will never be safe on Earth. There are too many in the government, in the military, even in the private sector of every nation down there who would do whatever they have to in order to ‘study’ an Immortal. My Wife was taken prisoner on a planet by a group of people known as the Balisians. Very much like most of the countries on Earth. Their leaders were just like you. You wouldn’t believe the horrors that beautiful, sensitive woman was put through, all in the name of science, for the ‘betterment of mankind’. She was killed in every way imaginable. She was tortured, in ways you probably can’t imagine. We will never allow that to happen again."
"So you’re saying that Immortals will never again come to Earth?" President Taylor asked.
"Yes, sir, that’s exactly what I’m saying," Daniel replied.
"You’re not giving any of us much of a chance to prove you wrong," the Danish leader protested.
"Let me ask you this," Daniel said. "How many of you have already issued orders that if the chance arises, an Immortal is to be taken into custody, as quietly as possible?"
Several faces around the table paled, others turned red. All of them shifted uncomfortably.
"I rest my case," Daniel said, shaking his head. He was thoroughly sickened by the entire group, and it was visible on his face. "Now, let’s get on with this. I have a brand-new daughter I’d like to get home to," he said curtly.
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