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Love Conquers All
Duncan walked into the conference room and handed out the folders. "We just received word from Ishmael on Alteria. Looks like Zinder is back. And they’d like some help taking the bastard out."
"We can do that," Jack grinned.
Daniel’s head shot up, he exchanged an uneasy glance with Casey. Duncan didn’t miss the by-play, neither did Jack.
"Okay, what’s up?" Jack asked.
Daniel swallowed hard, his face suddenly pale. "It started just like this. Exactly like this," he said hoarsely.
"What started exactly like this?" Duncan asked, frowning.
Unable to speak, Daniel shook his head. He attempted to take a sip of his coffee, but his hand was shaking too badly to lift the cup to his lips. His heart began pounding against his ribs. His nightmare was about to become reality, and he knew he had to change it. He couldn’t, wouldn’t lose her. He didn’t care about the people on Alteria, not any longer. All that he cared about was that Casey remain safe and alive and…healthy.
Casey reached out and put her hand on his arm, her fingers caressing him gently. "Daniel has been having a nightmare for a week now. A very detailed, very…intense…nightmare. So real that he was beginning to believe that it was his reality." She took a deep breath. "I think it’s premonition."
Daniel looked at her, the color draining completely from his face. "You’re not leaving Gamma. I want a guard on you twenty-four/seven."
She shook her head. "And when Zinder threatens to behead all of you, then what?"
"Hello?" Jack said, knocking on the table in front of him. "Would one of you mind explaining what’s going on?"
Haltingly, Daniel began to give the details of his nightmare, closing his eyes in pain as he described the horrors of what had…what might happen…to his Wife.
"Jesus!" Jack hissed when Daniel had finished. Sam, Teal'c, and Duncan sat in stunned silence.
"We can’t let those people down," Duncan said. "I’ll send SG-6, and call General Hammond for a couple of Marine teams. If we know that it’s a set up, then we can plan accordingly. A couple of concussion grenades should help."
Casey was pulling her lip between her teeth.
"What is it, Casey?" Sam asked quietly. She was still shaking inside from what Daniel had told them, the terrible images his descriptions had brought forth still dancing behind her eyes.
"We have to go. I don’t know why, but we do. Send in 6 and the Marines after us. If we’re going to catch Zinder, and stop him, then SG-1 has to go."
Daniel shook his head. "No! No way in hell!"
She took his hand. "Daniel, in your…nightmare, why didn’t I talk to you…our special way?"
He frowned. "I don’t know."
"I have the feeling that we can change the…outcome…of this entire thing; but we have to go," Casey said. "I believe that our…private communication…is the key."
"Case, I think we can come up with a tracking device. We could probably get one small enough to hide in your navel ring," Jack said. He had seen that particular piece of jewelry several times, whenever she wore cropped tee shirts. Which was often. He was trying to talk Sam into getting her belly button pierced, but so far she was resisting the idea. "Then we’ll know exactly where you are at all times."
Duncan nodded. "I’m sending 6 with you. I’ll send the Marines in thirty minutes later. According to Daniel’s…uh…nightmare, Zinder will be gone, but his goons won’t be. We can take them out once and for all."
"No." Daniel’s voice was soft, but firm. "I will not lose her. I will not allow…that…to happen to her." He could feel the pain of her loss wrapping itself around his heart like a cold hand.
Casey stood up, tugged at his chair until he slid back and allowed her to settle on his lap. She took his face between her hands, his arms went around her. "Daniel, we know what to expect. I know what to expect. Believe me, forewarned is forearmed. I’ll be able to get out of…that. If I had no warning, didn’t know what Zinder had planned, the shock would be overwhelming. Trust me, Sweetheart, I’ll be okay. Besides, you and Jack and Sam and T will be there before it ever gets that far! More than likely, if Zinder knows you’re right behind me, he won’t take the time for…that. I’ll go straight to the block."
"And that’s better how?" Daniel demanded to know.
"Hey, all I need is a little bit of Sectonin. I could be the best non-hooker in history!" she joked.
Snickers echoed around the table. Even Daniel smiled fleetingly. "No."
"Daniel, this has to happen. I can feel it. I know that you can too, I see it in your eyes. If it doesn’t happen now, it will later, only in a different manner. We know what to expect. That gives us an advantage. Waiting will put us at a distinct disadvantage. I’d rather go in with the cards stacked on my side," she argued.
He looked into her eyes, knew that she wouldn't back down. His heart turned over in his chest, his stomach tied itself in knots. "If anything happens to you, I’m going to kill you," he whispered, his arms tightening around her.
She smiled. "It won’t." Her smile faded, and she turned to Duncan. "If…just…if…I don’t want to live like that. Just so you know. Help him."
Duncan felt the blood run from his head to his heart. She had just asked him to help Daniel behead her…if she did indeed return to Gamma so…wounded…that she no longer existed in more than just body. He glanced at Daniel. That man also understood what his wife had just asked of him. The pain in the younger man’s eyes was heartbreaking.
"Besides, nothing is going to happen. Well, other than us kicking Zinder’s ass," she said, smiling at Daniel.
Duncan sent them to get ready for the mission, with full debrief in less than two hours. A message was sent to Alteria. In Daniel’s nightmare, the team had gone immediately. They were already hoping that by changing this much, other aspects of his ‘premonition’ would be changed.
A A A A A A
Casey sought out Gwenyth Blackstone, an Immortal psychologist assigned to work with the SG teams. She explained Daniel’s nightmare, the upcoming mission, and asked for advice on dealing with any possible rape she might be facing.
"Casey, this isn’t something you can just…turn off," Gwenyth protested.
"Sure it is. It’s my body. If I can ‘turn off’ torture, why can’t I just ‘turn off’ a rape?"
"Because the violence is directed differently. Rape is more personal, more…private. It’s an attack not on just your body, but your mind, your heart…your very soul," the woman replied.
The young blonde shook her head stubbornly. "There has to be a way…some sort of meditation that I can use to…protect…myself. My body will heal, will be just fine. I just need to make sure that I’ll be there to…uh…inhabit it. I don’t want to disappear like that, leave Daniel and Emily. Please?"
The older Immortal sighed, then nodded. "There are several meditation techniques you can use. I’ll teach you the easiest, since we’re pressed for time."
A A A A A A
When Casey joined the rest of the team for the full debrief, she was confident that she could protect herself against all attacks. She sat down next to Daniel, took his hand. "Just keep talking to me, Daniel. Gwenyth taught me some meditation. The two should keep me safe from anything…bad."
He squeezed her fingers. Her question about their communication had been nagging at him. Why hadn’t they ‘talked’ in his nightmare? The only answer he could find was that she had been drugged, and had been kept that way. He had visited with Dr. Montigue. The doctor had assured him that her Quickening would hamper any drugs in her system, that it would be difficult to keep her drugged enough to keep her from communicating with him without rendering her completely unconscious, and keeping her that way. He raised her fingers to his lips. And tried to fight down the panicked feeling that he was about to lose her - for real, and forever.
Jack had several of the technicians working on a small transmitter, but it wasn’t ready yet. And time was important, they needed to go to Alteria before the ‘opportunity’ to change the dream was lost. So she would go without it.
When the team walked through the ‘gate, it was the middle of the night on the planet. Ishmael and the other leaders of the ‘freedom fighters’ met them, and hurried them to one of the nearby houses.
Jack and Daniel exchanged a look. The leaders of the rebellion on Alteria were still alive. So far, the circumstances of their arrival had been changed. With luck, the rest would be as well. They sat huddled around a small brazier, drinking strong tea with Ishmael. Zinder was not at the port, but had landed again to the south of the resorts.
Someone in the port district did not want Zinder there, thus his reluctance, or perhaps inability, to land there. Whoever it was didn't have enough influence to prevent him from landing at all. Jack immediately sent SG-6 to the docks to find out who was in charge. He was hoping that this unknown person, or persons, would believe in the old adage "the enemy of my enemy is my friend."
Daniel refused to let Casey out of his sight, holding her hand, or walking with his arm around her. Zinder’s location meant a trip into the desert, and risked her and Sam to the roaming Bedouins who lived there. It was a trip that they had no choice but to make. He held her hand tighter as they stood watching the people around them making preparations for their journey.
Casey cocked her head to one side. "We’ve changed things…drastically," she said, closing her eyes, trying to ‘see’ what she was feeling. She smiled. "It’s going to be okay." She opened her eyes, put her palm to Daniel’s cheek. "I’m still going to be sold into slavery. But…I’m going to be okay. I promise."
He rubbed his cheek against her soft hand. "I hate this. I’d rather you just go back home and let us deal with this."
She shook her head. "I still have to make sure that you and the rest of the team aren’t beheaded."
He didn’t reply. Instead he pulled her into his embrace, held her tightly against his chest, pressed his cheek against her hair, breathed deeply of her sweet scent. And again fought down the panic that he felt.
Ishmael brought the camels to where the team waited. It was time to go.
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