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My Eyes Adored You
The man tossed down his tools and shook his head. "I’m sorry, Wade. This engine is just beyond repair. We need new parts. Probably be cheaper to just buy a new damn ship, with all that’s wrong with this one."
Wade stood, booted feet spread shoulder width apart, his hands on his leather clad hips. "Well, we can’t afford a new ship. A new engine, maybe."
"Right now we don’t have a way to get anywhere to get a new engine," the man continued. "Don’t know how long I’ll be able to keep life support going either."
The black haired man turned to the man beside him. "Tyler, go up and start sending out a distress signal. Let’s hope help arrives before our luck runs out." He turned and made his way back to the bridge of the ship.
For three weeks the escaped slaves had been on the run. A stop at a local trading port had provided food and clothing, but no cargo with which to earn more money. Most of the men had been slaves for so long, several of them nearly all of their lives, and the thought of starting a new life on their own was terrifying. Wade was determined to do just that. He dropped down into the captain’s chair. He crossed his arms over his muscular chest. What he wanted to do was get each of these men home. He thought about his own home. It had been so many years. He was sure that his father’s ship had been destroyed as soon has he had been taken, although he had no proof of that actually happening. He listened to the automated distress call for several minutes, then decided to go to his quarters.
He put the record crystal into the player. Watched her again. Watched as her legs wrapped around him. He could feel that familiar ache in his groin. He had never gone so long without having…without servicing…a woman. He wrapped his long fingers around his aching cock and began to stroke himself. He froze the frame on her beautiful face, her eyes were closed, her mouth open slightly, her head tossed back. "That’s it, Casey," he whispered. "Do it for me." With a groan he brought himself to completion, wiped up the mess with an old cloth. And wondered for the millionth time where the beautiful green-eyed woman was.
A A A A A A
Daniel put Casey on her feet once they reached the encampment, but kept her hand tightly in his.
"There you are," Jack said, his annoyance visible in his face. Sam was nowhere to be seen. "Find out what the hell is going on, and why these…women…are here!"
Daniel gave a nod, then looked around. An older woman was standing just in front of a fire watching them. He tucked Casey’s arm into his, then walked toward the woman. "Hello," he said softly. "Hello," he said again, in Goa’uld.
The older woman nodded at him. "Greetings. You are the men who were betrayed by Seleconne, are you not?"
He started, then nodded. "Yes, we are."
The woman nodded again. "The slaves remember you. Several hoped that you had...returned...for them."
Daniel closed his eyes for a brief moment. That would explain Ishtar’s behavior! She believed that he had returned to…save…her! She didn’t know - or understand - that he was married! Probably didn’t care, was willing to be his second wife, or concubine…or whatever. That was why she so willingly sat down beside them in the woods. "We didn't know that you were here," he replied.
"So I have told them. I also told them that you are not for them. They are not for you," she said.
He nodded. He saw Ishtar peeking out from the tent just behind the woman he was speaking to. Her eyes were red and puffy, she had been crying. He pulled his attention back to the older woman.
Casey watched his eyes, saw the regret, the pity that filled their blue depths when he saw Ishtar peeking out at them.
"I am Daniel Jackson, this is my Wife, my Beloved, Casey," he said in way of introduction.
She couldn’t help but smile. ‘Beloved’ was the most special of all relationships according to the Goa’uld. The thought that Ba’al had called her that flashed through her mind. She recoiled from it, forced it back.
"I am Hannah. I am the caregiver to these women. We have escaped Seleconne, with the help of a man who calls himself John."
"Why did you come here?" Daniel asked.
"John arrived too late to…help…you and your friends. He knew that the encampment remained, and that it would be a safe place to rest for just awhile. He will be joining us shortly, to take us away to safety."
"Will he take you home?"
Hannah shook her gray head. "We were all born on Dracia. These women are the offspring of slaves. They have been trained from childhood to be whores."
Casey flinched at the brunt description. "What do you mean, 'trained from childhood'?"
The woman looked at her. "When a girl slave bleeds for the first time, she begins her training. She is sent to a house of pleasure where a Madame sees to it that she learns all manner of pleasing a man, knows from his movements what he wants. Learns how to anticipate his…desires."
She swayed slightly, grabbed onto Daniel’s arm. She looked up, saw that his face had gone pale. Daniel was probably the first man, perhaps only man, who had ever shown Ishtar any kindness, gentleness.
"Oh, god," he moaned. Once again he glanced at Ishtar, who remained at the tent opening, watching them, tears streaming down her cheeks.
"She thought…she hoped…" Casey pulled away from Daniel and ran toward the back of one of the tents. She dropped to her knees. This situation just became more twisted with each new discovery. She felt like she wanted to throw up. She wanted to scream and cry.
His arms locked around her, pulled her against his chest. "Babe?"
"Oh, Daniel, it’s so…sad! So…wrong! My god, that poor child!" She shook her head.
"Daniel! Why aren’t you finding out what’s going on?" Jack demanded, stalking up to them.
"Go to hell, Jack! Better yet, go find your wife! Tell Sam that these girls have been…their training started when they were about twelve years old. They were bred to be whores, Jack. That’s all they know! Some guy named John just helped them escape. Hannah said that he arrived too late to help us, knew that the tents were still here, and sent them here until he could join back up with them. Probably be here soon," Daniel said. He had calmed down by the time he finished speaking. Casey was clinging to him once again.
"You have go to be kidding! Twelve?"
Daniel nodded. "They thought we had come back to save them…to take them home with us."
"Uh, Case, are you okay?" Jack asked softly.
"Better than I was an hour ago. Not as good as I’ll be once this is all…straightened out. Where’s Sam?"
Jack looked down. "She took off…told me not to follow."
Casey shook her head. "How long ago?"
The older man shrugged. "Thirty minutes, maybe longer."
"You’re just about out of time. If she walks back into this camp, the hurt and the anger will be worse. Go to her. Beg her forgiveness. Tell her what we found out. Then explain again about the drugged wine," Casey said.
Jack looked at her for a minute, then nodded. "Yeah. Okay."
Casey watched as he walked out of the camp. "Let’s just hope that he didn’t wait too long," she said softly.
"What about you, Angel? Are we okay?"
She pressed her lips to his throat. "We’re okay."
Her mind reached out to him, felt the worry, the doubts, the fear. She sent him all the love she felt, caressed the worry and fear from his mind. "I’m sure," she said softly.
He kissed the tip of her nose. "Case, I sort of need to hear the words," he admitted quietly.
"I forgive you, Daniel," she whispered.
He crushed her against him. "Thank you, Angel," he whispered in reply.
"You’re welcome. Let’s find out what this John character has planned for these girls," Casey said, standing to her feet. She reached down and ran her hand through his hair just before he stood up. "Love you, Sweetheart."
"Love you, Angel," he replied, a smile on his face.
The older woman was sitting in front of the largest of the tents. Evidently all of the girls were now waiting inside its protective walls.
"Your Beloved is upset that Ishtar was sent to serve you," Hannah said softly when they joined her.
Daniel nodded. "Yes, she is. She was deeply hurt that I would…make love…to another woman." In his mind Daniel admitted to himself that what had happened between Ishtar and him had not been love. Lust at best. Raw sex. Never were there any emotions attached to the…acts. "Even though I was drugged, I was wrong. I should have walked away from the situation the night before."
Hannah laughed. "You did not know that the food you were served had certain ingredients that…inhibit…that part of the brain that understands the need for discretion?"
Daniel stared at her. "We were drugged that night, too?"
The woman nodded. "Seleconne knew that you would never accept his ‘gifts’. He studied your ways for weeks, knew everything there was to know about the customs of the Tau’ri."
"Because he was paid well to do so. I do not know who paid him. But he was instructed to ask for you and your friend. To make sure that your wives were not with you. To guarantee that you would be placed in a situation that your wife could not, and would not forgive you for."
"The very fact that drugs were used on us makes it easier to win forgiveness from our wives," Daniel replied.
The woman laughed. "You were not supposed to know about, or remember the drugs. Only that you had made love to a slave girl. Not just once, but many times during an …during an orgy of lust and wine. You left the tent before the drugs completely wore off. You were probably aware of them leaving your system."
He thought back for a moment. His mind seemed to have cleared suddenly, the minute that he had found Casey’s earring in his pocket. "I do sort of remember things clearing up rather suddenly, the minute that I found my wife’s earring in my pocket."
Hannah smiled. "You felt great anguish, yes?"
"Very great anguish."
"Great emotion can override the effects of the drug. You were free of it the moment that happened. Had you fallen asleep, as Seleconne wanted, you would never have noticed the haze leaving your mind. You wouldn’t even have been hung over. He had to call the warriors in sooner than planned. We barely had time to leave the planet before they arrived."
"He would have kept giving them the wine, and the girls, until the men realized what they had done…days later," Casey said softly.
Hannah nodded. "He believed that Daniel Jackson and his friend Jack O’Neill would have been broken, unwilling to go home to face their wives with what they had done. They would not have tried to escape when the one who paid him arrived."
Casey looked at Daniel. "Ba’al?"
He shook his head. "I’m thinking Simmons. He wanted you pissed off enough to behead me, so that my death would look like an…accident. He would have…brought you…to wherever he was holding me… us…and seen to it that there was a sword in your hand when you learned what had happened."
She shuddered, shifted closer to him, sought comfort. She smiled inwardly as she felt him caress her mind gently. The sensation was just as pleasurable as if his hands were touching her body. She reached out to him, caressed him, let her love flow slowly, tenderly to him.
Sam and Jack walked back into camp. They were hand in hand. "Find anything else out?"
"Yeah, the set-up was just like Aaron suspected."
The ‘gate came to life. SG-6 was immediately in position. SG-1 was right beside them. A large man with fiery red hair stepped through the gate, then gaped at the armed people who stood at the bottom of the stairs.
"You work for Seleconne?" he asked, his voice weary.
Daniel shook his head. "No. Seleconne betrayed us. We returned here to see if he left behind any evidence of his betrayal."
The man studied the young man with the blue eyes. "I am here merely to take these poor girls to safety."
"Where, exactly?" Daniel asked.
"To a colony on a small planet known as Mercy. This is the third group I’ve managed to free from Dracia," he said.
"Then you must be John. I’m Daniel Jackson."
"I am John," the man acknowledged warily.
"What happens to the girls on Mercy?" Casey asked.
"They are sent to good homes, people who have been approved by the Elders. They are educated, taught a skill, and their souls are healed. At least we try to heal them."
"Why?" Jack asked.
"Because the daughter of one of the founders of Mercy had his daughter stolen from him many years ago. By Seleconne’s father. When he was finally able to rescue her, he brought with him several other slaves. When he learned how they were treated, how young they were when their…training…was started, he dedicated himself to helping them. He has a few…friends…who continue to fund each…rescue operation."
The men of SG-1 exchanged glances. "Sounds too good to be true," Jack said softly.
"Yeah, it does. But unless he offers to let us visit ‘Mercy’ to see for ourselves, there’s nothing we can do," Daniel replied.
"And no way of knowing if he’d just show us what he wanted us to see," Jack added.
"Which leaves us right back where we started from," Daniel sighed.
Casey studied the man who still stood at the top of the steps. She pulled her knife from the sheath, walked up to him, and held it to his throat. "Swear now that you speak the truth, or I’ll gut you like a lying dog," she snarled.
Perspiration broke out on the man’s forehead. He backed up half a step. "I swear it!"
Casey turned and looked at Jack. "He’s lying." She bounced back down the stairs.
Daniel looked at her, then grinned. "That’s my Tiger!"
"Well, now what do we do?" Sam asked. "I want to help these women. But I don’t want them on Gamma."
"I agree," Casey said softly. She looked at Daniel. "I love you, and forgive you, but there is only so much that I can handle. That's beyond what I can deal with."
He nodded, caressed her cheek with one hand. "No problem, babe. I don’t particularly want them there either."
Jack was setting up the remote camera to contact Gamma SGC. "We’ll let Duncan figure out where to send them."
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