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Wish Upon a Star
By one a.m. the women were completely inebriated. They were laughing over everything, and had all danced to at least two more songs. The four men had found a table, and sat watching, their own laughter adding to the noise in the room.
Casey had taken off her shoes, and was dancing again, her body undulating with the beat of the music. Several Marines had formed a circle around her, clapping and laughing. They knew exactly who she was, and the thought of being on the dance floor with Casey Jackson, and the generous amount of alcohol that they had consumed, was exciting enough to have them ignoring the warning stares coming from a table near the door.
One of the Marines grabbed her around the waist and pulled her close. She looked up in surprise. "At ease, Marine," she said, smiling at him.
"Relax, Casey, i's jus' a dance," he said, slurring his words slightly. He pulled her closer, let his hands slide down to her hips.
"You get one warning, Marine. Then I drop you," she said, her eyes flashing with anger.
"C'mon! Jus' dance wi'me," he said, staggering slightly.
"Take your hands off of me," she said firmly, pushing him away. He staggered backwards, fell onto his butt in the middle of the floor.
"That wasn't very friendly!" he growled, his eyes narrowing.
He stood up, reached for her, was suddenly pulled backward. He turned to face a very angry Daniel Jackson.
"I suggest you leave my Wife alone," Daniel said calmly.
"Yeah? If you want her left alone, maybe you should make her stop acting like such slut!" the young man said loudly.
Casey froze, her eyes wide. She looked at Daniel, watched his eyes narrow with anger.
"I think you'd better take that back, and apologize," Daniel said between clenched teeth.
"Hey, a slut is a slut! Even if she is on SG-1, and married to some fancy-schmancy bookhead,"
Jack grimaced. "Oh, he just said the wrong thing!" he said, from the table where he and Duncan and Teal'c were now on their feet.
Daniel pulled back his hand, ready to plow his fist into the drunken man's face when he felt familiar hands on his arm.
"Don't, Daniel. Don't cause trouble for yourself," she said softly. "He's right, anyway." Without another word she went to the table, put on her shoes, grabbed her purse and walked out the door.
"Oh, hell!" he hissed. Before Daniel could hit him, the man crumpled to the floor, passed out.
The manager came running forward. "Doctor Jackson, I would like to apologize. No one here believes a word this...bum...said. I'll make sure that he never comes back here again."
Daniel nodded. The people in the room may not believe it, but he knew that Casey did. He turned on his heel and ran out the door to find her. He looked around, but didn't see her. She couldn't have gotten far, he thought.
"Casey?" He looked around the parking lot, but didn’t see her. He ran for the jeep. She was hurting, and she was drunk. Either one alone was more than enough for her to have to deal with. Together it scared him to death.
The women at the table exchanged uneasy glances. All of them were well aware of the life Casey had had as a child, and teenager. They knew the hateful, hurtful things that Helen Webster had said, realized that those demons had resurfaced to haunt her.
"Some day I'm going to kill that fat bitch," Gretchen said softly, a frown on her lovely face.
A A A A A A
Rinaldi's was a block away. She ran down the alley, into the side door. The regulars looked up in surprise as she burst inside. She just looked at the bartender and nodded. Finding table in the corner, she dropped down onto the chair, closed her eyes and forced the tears back. The bottle, shot glass, salt shaker and a plate of limes were placed gently in front of her.
"Need anything else, Casey?" the bartender asked quietly. She didn't come here often, only when something bad was happening in her life. Something bad had just happened, he could see it in her eyes.
She shook her head. "No, thank you," she whispered. Just before he could move away, she stopped him with her question. "Do you think I'm a slut?"
He stared at her. "Hell no! Casey, you're a real lady! More class in your little finger than most broads have in their entire body! Who the hell said that?"
Again she shook her head. "Wrong person, " she mumbled. "You've never seen me dance…never seen-" she wiped a tear from her cheek. "Thanks, John."
The bartender nodded tersely, then went back to the bar. He whispered to three men sitting at the bar. Casey never noticed when they stood up and left.
She did a shot, then another, then another. It did nothing to dull the pain. Nothing to take away the image of that young Marine, the sneer on his face, the look of anger in his eyes.
Slut!…Slut!…Whore!…Slut! Once a slut, always a slut!
The words echoed in her ears. No matter how hard she tried, no matter what Daniel said, she was a slut.
Daniel walked into the bar. The bartender nodded at him, then looked toward the back of the room. Oh, hell. She was in bad shape. He could tell she'd been crying. He sat down in front of her.
"I'm a slut," she whispered.
"No, you're not," he said firmly.
"You didn't see me on the dance floor," she said.
"As a matter of fact, I did. You looked like you were having a lot of fun," he said.
She looked up at him. "You were there?"
He smiled. "Yeah. Jack and I thought it might be a good idea to hang around, in case you and Sam passed out and needed rides home."
She smiled, although it didn't light her eyes. "I'm sorry."
"For what, babe?"
He shook his head. "Angel, you didn't do anything wrong. He was drunk, and totally out of line."
"No, he's right."
"Casey Renee, now you listen to me," Daniel said firmly, grabbing her wrists before she could take another shot of tequila. "You are not a slut!" Damn it to hell anyway! He thought he had already defeated this demon! How many times would he…would she…have to fight it?
She pulled away from him. "Excuse me. I have to go to the bathroom." She stumbled into the small, dingy room. Stood looking into the mirror.
Little slut! That's all you are, and all you ever will be! Dirty little whore!
A breeze from the open window beside her caught her attention. Daniel deserved better. Her children deserved better. She'd just go away…somewhere…they would do fine without her. She didn't want Emily and Nicholas to grow up hearing the awful names, finding out that she was… that. She didn't want Daniel to have to fight continually to protect her…something that she didn't deserve…he should have a wife who was good and not a slut or a whore and oh, god she had to get away before her heart shattered completely. With the alcohol in her system doing all of her thinking, she climbed out of the window, staggered down the alley and towards the base. She'd just go through the 'gate…to somewhere far away.
Daniel glanced at his watch. She'd been in there for almost ten minutes. Had she passed out? He looked at the door, then over at the bartender. "I'm going to see if she's okay."
"No problem, Doctor Jackson," John replied. He was getting a little worried himself.
The door wasn't locked, she was so drunk she probably hadn't thought to turn the knob. She wasn't there, either. One look at the open window told him why. "Oh, hell!" He raced out, grabbing his cell phone and dialing as he ran. "Jack? She slipped out of Rinaldi's. I don't know how many shots she did before I found her. She's in really bad shape, and she sure as hell isn't thinking. We need to find her before she does something stupid."
The three-man police force that Hope boasted was alerted, but were told that the base would deal with the problem. The men of SG-1 swung into action, looking for their missing, totally toasted teammate.
A A A A A A
Casey ran all the way home, slipped into the house and quickly changed into black jeans and a black tee shirt. She stopped in the kitchen long enough to take a bottle of ButterShotz from the cabinet and down nearly half the bottle of the sweet, candy-flavored liquor. She looked around, saying goodbye in her mind, and heart, tears streaming down her face, then slipped out the French door to the left of the fireplace. She was a trained warrior, and even in her drunken stupor, she had a clear idea of her objective.
It didn't take much to slip past the guard shack. The guards were there more for keeping people from wandering into unsafe areas on base than actually keeping anyone out. She managed to get all the way to the armory without being detected. The SF's in the monitoring room saw that it was Casey Jackson, and didn't bother to wonder why she was alone, or there at nearly three a.m.
The SF on duty in the control room was busy doing maintenance on one of the auxiliary computers. He never saw the person who hit him and rendered him unconscious. She tried to think, tried to remember a safe place to go. PX3-695! No water-dwelling aliens to tag her there! Immie Central! She could go there, sober up, and plan her next move. She dialed the gate, grabbed the 9mm she had taken from the armory, and raced to the 'gate. She didn't remember to clear the memory, or erase the last dialed coordinates. She rushed through, found herself alone on a planet that had brought as much joy as pain. It was mid-afternoon, and she stumbled toward the altar, where she and Daniel had been bound by the Fire. Tears streaming down her face, she leaned back against the stones and cried. Her body was demanding rest, the alcohol and the emotional tumult taking its toll on her. She wasn't even aware of falling asleep.
A A A A A A
Daniel was driving the streets, looking for her. If Ba'al wasn't already dead, he'd kill the son-of-a-bitch! That damned Goa'uld was the one who had stirred all this up again, fed into that lie that Helen Webster had woven into Casey's mind so neatly, so firmly, that it seemed he'd never be able to remove it. He stopped by the house; he needed to go to the bathroom - he had been drinking coffee at Esteban's. He frowned when he pulled into the driveway. He didn't remember leaving any lights on. The frown became a smile. She was here! She had come home!
He bounded up the steps and in the door. "Casey? Angel?" He glanced into the bedroom. She had been here, her clothes were in a pile on the floor. He went into the kitchen. Saw the nearly empty liquor bottle, and the door that was only half shut. "Damn it!"
He ran out the back, hoping that he'd find her passed out. He circled the neighborhood twice, was on his way back to the house when his cell phone rang. "Yeah?"
"Better get to the base," Jack's voice said. "She knocked out the duty watch in the 'gate room."
"Please tell me she didn't wipe the computers," Daniel moaned.
There was a chuckle. "Nope. She didn't. You can thank the booze for that. If she had been sober, she would have made sure of it. She's at Immie Central. Don't know why she picked there, but it's probably one of the safest places she could have gone."
"I'm on my way," he said, racing toward the jeep.
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