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No Matter the Time

Chapter 3

They were standing just outside of the infirmary. Casey gasped when Dr. Janet Fraiser stepped out of her office to greet them.

"Hi, I’m Doctor Fraiser." Janet said, her smile warm and friendly. "General Hammond just called up and told me to expect you."

Casey nodded. "Nice to meet you. I’m Casey Jackson."

Janet’s eyes flickered to Daniel.

"Yes, as in Mrs. Daniel," Casey smiled. "In my reality, anyway."

Janet’s smile widened. "Interesting."

Casey allowed Janet to begin examining her. She looked up at Carter. "I don’t mean to be a pain, but is there a way to get me home? I mean, if I don’t get out of here soon, I’ll, sort of disappear, right? Entropic cascade failure, I think is what Sam called it. I read about it in a couple of her reports. And like I said, Daniel is going to freak. We’ve had a run of lousy missions…seems we’ve been on the brink of losing each other for almost two years now. Oh…maybe…" she closed her eyes. ‘Daniel?’ She waited, hoping, wishing to hear his voice echo in her head. Nothing. "I was hoping," she said softly.

"Hoping what?" Janet asked.

"Well, Daniel is The Chosen. I’m His Chosen. We have this…link; we can communicate with each other. I was hoping that maybe, even if I’m here…wherever that is…that he could hear me. Apparently not. Which is totally going to have him off the deep end. It’s only been a couple of weeks since he had that damned nightmare-" she broke off at the expressions on the faces around her. "Let’s just say this is going to be damned hard on him, and I don’t know how much more he can take."

Carter smiled at her. "I’ll get the computer data on your incoming wormhole, and see what I can find. Do you remember the designation of the planet you were on?"

"Yeah, RZ4 329. Do you think going there and trying to dial home will work?"

The blonde scientist shook her head. "No, I’m afraid it won’t. What I need to know is whether or not there will be another solar flare between here and there in the next twenty-four hours. If so, we’ll send you through to RZ…"

"4 329. And hopefully I’ll get back to my time and universe."

"I’ll get started right away." She turned and left the room.

Daniel, Jack, and Teal'c remained, watching her carefully.

"Well, she’s Goa’uld free," Janet said lightly. "But she is a bit dehydrated. I’m going to hook you up to an IV, just a little glucose. Would you like something to eat?"

Casey shook her head. "I’m not really hungry." She glanced at her watch, pulled her lip between her teeth.

Daniel already recognized the motion as one that she made when nervous or upset. "What’s wrong?"

"I guess I’m just homesick. I…I miss my baby. And…Daniel."

Jack looked at her. "If anybody can get you back, Carter can. Don’t worry, she’s a whiz at this stuff."

"Yeah, she is," Casey agreed. "So, do you want all the intel I can give you on what’s coming, or at least what’s happened in my universe?"

Jack grinned. "Yeah, I would." He pulled up a chair and sat down beside the bed where Casey was now reclining. They all watched as Janet inserted a needle into her hand and started the IV drip.

She began to tell them what she knew of missions before she arrived at the SGC, her work with Daniel and the team, her training…by her husband…to work as an archaeologist. She told of all their missions, her glance straying to Daniel as she talked, noting the differences and similarities between him and the man she loved.

After nearly three hours, Jack told her to rest. He and Teal'c left the infirmary, but Daniel remained. He sat down in the chair Jack had occupied.

"I can understand why I…he…fell in love with you," he said softly.

She smiled. "Why?"

"You’re beautiful, smart, funny…and you share my…his…love of archaeology. He must appreciate being able to talk to you about his finds."

"I enjoy hearing him talk about them. I just love being with him, listening to him. He can get lost in his work for hours, but I understand how important it is, and unless he’s depriving himself of food and sleep, I usually leave him alone if he needs to work. If I get too feeling neglected, I have ways of getting his attention," she said, giving a wicked little smile.

Daniel felt his body respond to the thoughts that her statement invoked. He wondered just how she went about tearing him…her Daniel...away from what he was doing. He thought about Sha’re, wondered if this alternate Daniel Jackson had known her. "Casey, did your Daniel know a woman named Sha’re?"

She nodded. "Sha’re was his first wife. She was taken over by a Goa’uld…married to Apophis. She had a child, Daniel delivered him, and then the next time he found her, she tried to kill him. Teal'c had to kill her to save him. He was devastated by her loss."

His cheeks paled. "I…uh…I haven’t been able to find her. I haven’t seen her since she and I were both on Chulak," he said softly.

"Oh, god, I’m so sorry!" She reached out and took his hand. "Your future, your timeline is different. Don’t give up, Daniel. Your miracle could be right around the corner."

He nodded, looked away until he could blink the tears out of his eyes. "You said that your Daniel died of radiation poisoning? Was it…on purpose?"

She smiled. "No. He was being typical Daniel, and trying to save lives at the risk of his own. That’s when Oma offered him Ascension rather than death. Didn’t work out, he didn’t like the ‘watch but don’t interfere’ rule. He hadn’t been ‘unAscended’ long when we met, not quite six months. All of his memories of his life before being Ascended had returned, but he was still living on the base. That’s why we spent so much time together, after I…arrived; I was living on base as well," she said. "We felt this…connection…from the first time we saw each other…when I dived literally into his arms. He was hiding under a bush, you see, he and Sam heard me coming up the path, but didn’t know who or what I was, I thought the Jaffa were behind me, so I dove for the same bush." She giggled. "He told me that-" she broke off, pulled her lip between her teeth.

"You love him very much," Daniel said softly.

"With all that I am," she replied. She turned her head, brushed angrily at the tears that had started to fall. "We’ve had a really rough couple of years, mission-wise. He…we’ve been on the brink of losing each other so many times that I think we’re both exhausted, emotionally and physically. This last time…" her voice trailed off.

Daniel reached forward and took her hand. "Sam will get you home." His voice was firm, sure.

She nodded. "I hope so. I have the feeling that I won’t be leaving the planet without him again, not that I’ll mind at all," she said, a tiny smile flickering across her lips.

He looked up at the IV bag, which was now empty. "You probably haven’t eaten for awhile. The food in the commissary isn’t the best, but it’s better than starving. Would you…would you like to go get something to eat…with me, that is?"

She smiled. "I’d like that, thanks."

He noticed that she kept glancing at him, watching him. Was it because he was too much like her Daniel? Or too different? "I’ll see if Janet will come ‘unplug’ you," he said, smiling at her.

Her smile brightened her face and her eyes. "Thanks. I’ve never been crazy about being tied down."

He didn’t miss the flash in her eyes…a memory, and not a good one. He went to find the doctor.

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