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Fanfiction: Right About One Thing

Fandom: Stargate SG1
Series: Aftershocks
TAG to Episode: S4 Prodigy
Rating: PG-13
Author's Note: Team friendship.
Disclaimer: No copyright infringement intended.  Written for entertainment purposes only.

 

Right About One Thing


‘Teal’c.’ Daniel Jackson greeted his Jaffa team-mate with a self-conscious smile as the wormhole winked out behind him and the members of SG11. ‘I wasn’t expecting to see you. General Hammond said you were all on, er…’

‘M4C862, Daniel Jackson.’ Teal’c supplied, placing his hands behind his back. The gate room lights glanced off his dark, bald head and made the gold symbol shimmer. ‘We returned two hours ago after encountering a hostile life-form.’

‘Really?’ Daniel frowned, his brow crinkling. ‘Is everyone OK?’

‘Doctor Thompson was killed.’ Teal’c reported as they fell into step as they left the gate room. ‘Doctor Lee and Doctor Hamilton received minor injuries as did Colonel O’Neill.’

Daniel’s blue eyes snapped to Teal’c’s. ‘Minor injuries?’

‘They were stung by the life-forms.’ Teal’c said.

‘Stung? What, er, were these life-forms exactly?’ Daniel asked. His mind was conjuring up alien bumble bees.

‘They were extremely small yet had the capability to pass through matter.’ Teal’c explained. ‘They attacked as a swarm. Major Carter believed they might be intelligent.’

‘Wow.’ Daniel sighed.

‘Colonel O’Neill and those injured have been restricted to the infirmary in case there are additional side-effects.’ Teal’c informed him.

Daniel felt his lips twitch. ‘I’m sure Jack’s happy about that.’

‘Indeed he is not.’ Teal’c took a moment to exchange a look of sympathetic amusement with Daniel at their team-leader’s expense. Jack had just gotten out of the infirmary after he’d been injured on their previous mission. Daniel figured the military man would be incredibly frustrated at being confined again.

They got into the elevator.

‘What of your own mission?’ Teal’c asked. ‘You have returned on schedule.’

‘The Ankari speak a mixture of Hungarian and Chinese Mandarin.’ Daniel shrugged. ‘I’m the only one who has both and they have a trinium mine that we want to trade for. They need medical supplies. It’s going quite well.’ His cheeks flushed pink as he remembered his time on the planet.

Teal’c raised an eyebrow.

‘It’s, er, well,’ Daniel pushed his glasses up his nose, ‘the daughter of the tribal leader was very attentive.’

The Jaffa’s dark eyes shone with more amusement. ‘I see.’

‘It’s nothing, really.’ Daniel insisted. Jemi was sweet but she was incredibly young. He liked her; he was flattered; but he had made it clear to her father that his taking Jemi as a wife was so not going to be part of their deal. At least he had seen the signs unlike his first visit to Abydos when he had been completely oblivious to Kasuf giving him Sha’re as a bride. The thought of his late wife kept him silent and introspective as Teal’c walked with him into the infirmary.

‘I will visit with Colonel O’Neill while you are examined.’ Teal’c said crisply. He walked away before Daniel could reply.

Daniel wondered briefly if he would be able to sneak a visit to Jack before he got examined but as he caught the eye of Janet Fraiser across the room, he made his way into the examination room and sat on a bed with resigned patience. He let the murmurs of SG11 wash over him.

He had been surprised when General Hammond had called him to the office to ask him to join SG11. Surprised but pleased at the older man’s confidence in his skills and abilities. He had accepted; SG1 had been on stand down while Jack’s leg healed from being bitten on their last mission and their female team-mate Samantha Carter had accepted an invitation to lecture at the Academy. There had been no pressing requirement to complete the translations and work in his office – he had delegated most of it to Nyan. A couple of days negotiating a treaty had seemed like a good idea and it had been for the most part. He had been surprised to hear SG1 had subsequently been asked to relieve SG2 on M4C862 but missions were rescheduled all the time and his slight discomfort at not being with his team-mates had been outweighed by the knowledge that he was needed where he was.

The Ankari were simple but good people. Their sociological structure was very patriarchal and Daniel was certain Sam would hate it but it had reminded him strongly of Abydos. He missed the planet that he had adopted as his home; the desert and the sun. He loved Earth but a part of him was tied to Abydos in a way he didn’t think anyone really understood except maybe Jack, and even for Jack the tie wasn’t as strong.

No, negotiating the treaty; spending the time with the Ankari; it had been good. It had reminded Daniel why he was part of the programme; to make a difference and to help people. His anger against the Goa’uld; the want to wipe them out of existence to cosmically balance Sha’re’s unjust and unfair death was fading. He still believed in fighting them but he had found his own moral compass again and he was grateful for that. He hoped Sha’re’s son, Shifu, knew just how much of a difference he had made to Daniel’s life since his visit.

The dream that Shifu had given him where Daniel had turned evil under the influence of the Goa’uld’s memories and knowledge in his subconscious had provoked Daniel into rethinking his life and his choices. He had realised how much Sha’re’s death had changed him; how much his involvement in the war with the Goa’uld had changed him. He had finally understood what path his anger would lead him down and he had stepped back. He had decided against leaving the programme and returning to Abydos. While he knew Kasuf and Skaara would have welcomed him, being there without Sha’re was too hard and he truly wanted to continue his work; to continue making a difference. More, SG1 was his constant. His team-mates had become his family and he loved them. Sam had become the sister he had never had; Teal’c and Jack like brothers. He should check on Jack when he was finished being examined, Daniel mused.

‘Doctor Jackson.’ Janet’s cheerful voice broke into his thoughts and he smiled at the petite doctor as she approached him.

‘Doctor Fraiser.’ Daniel responded just as formally.

Their eyes twinkled at each other.

‘Any problems?’ Janet asked as she started her examination.

Daniel obediently opened his mouth for the visual check on his throat and shook his head. ‘Everything went well.’ He said as she moved away and made a note on his chart.

‘I understand the Ankari are trading for medical supplies.’ Janet said as she began to take his blood pressure.

‘Yes.’ Daniel nodded. ‘They haven’t made many medical advances.’ He looked at her. ‘Actually, we’re due to go back in a couple of weeks; you should come.’

‘Really?’ Janet looked up from the blood pressure machine.

‘Sure. I mean, who better to determine what they actually need?’ Daniel said.

‘That’s a good point.’ Janet said. ‘We wouldn’t be helping them if we were to trade something they didn’t actually need.’

‘Exactly.’ Daniel agreed. ‘If you’re OK with the idea, I’ll talk to General Hammond?’

Janet nodded happily. ‘Sure. I’d love to go. It’s always nice to make home visits.’

‘So.’ Daniel asked as she ordered the nurse to prepare his shot and he slipped off the bed to loosen his pants. ‘How’s Cassie?’

‘Cassie’s good.’ Janet took the syringe and moved to Daniel’s side.

He felt the cold swab of alcohol on his buttock before the pinch of the needle.

‘I can’t believe how much of a teenager she’s become in the last couple of months.’ Janet commented. ‘We’re done.’ She stepped back from him.

Daniel fastened his pants. ‘I take it Cassie’s giving you a hard time?’

‘No more than teenager gives their parents, I’m sure.’ Janet smiled to take the sting out of her words.

‘I could stop by.’ Daniel offered. ‘Spend some time with her.’

‘That would be great. Sam usually comes over on Saturdays for their chess game.’ Janet agreed. ‘Why don’t you come over too, I mean if you don’t have plans? You can fill me in on the Ankari.’

‘OK.’ Daniel nodded shyly.

Janet reached for his chart. ‘Well, all that’s left is your MRI. You can join Doctors Hamilton and Lee. They got delayed earlier. You know the way.’

‘I know the way.’ Daniel watched as she moved onto the SG11 team-leader and he walked out. He made his way to the MRI room and slowed as he spotted the queue in the corridor. He recognised Doctors Hamilton and Lee immediately.

‘Doctors.’

‘Doctor.’

They all nodded at each other.

‘I hear you guys had some excitement on M4C862.’ Daniel said as he sat in the third chair. ‘Teal’c said you discovered a new life-form?’

‘It was amazing.’ Bill Lee turned to him, excitement filling his slightly rotund face. ‘Of course, until they started attacking and then it was pretty, well, terrifying is the word that I’d use.’

‘I don’t know how you do it.’ Hamilton said leaning forward to look at Daniel almost pityingly.

‘Do what?’ Daniel asked bemused.

‘Work with him.’

Daniel’s eyebrows rose above the rim of his glasses and he absently noticed Bill sitting back with a slightly disgusted expression at his colleague’s statement. ‘Uh, him?’

‘Colonel O’Neill.’

‘Oh.’ Daniel blinked. ‘Him.’

‘He’s so…’ Hamilton gestured. ‘Military.’

‘Yes.’ Daniel agreed dryly.

‘He saved our lives, Stephen.’ Bill protested.

‘That’s his job, Bill.’ Hamilton shot back. ‘And I’m not saying I don’t appreciate what he did in getting us out of there because I do and I did apologise to him because of that.’

There was clearly a ‘but’ hanging in the air; Daniel refused to voice it.

‘But?’ Bill prompted.

‘But I think this whole thing could have been avoided if he’d only listened to us in the first place.’ Hamilton argued. ‘If we’d been able to study the creatures like we wanted, we might have learned more about them; realised what was going to happen before it happened.’

‘And we might have provoked them into attacking us earlier.’ Bill shot back. He shook his head.

Daniel saw the shiver that ran through the scientist’s frame.

‘You didn’t see what they did to…’ Bill swallowed convulsively. ‘We knew they were intelligent…’

‘We theorised.’ Hamilton corrected. ‘Based on the fact that they led us to others but it’s possible that they were no more organised or intelligent than a swarm of bees.’

‘Stephen…’ Bill began to protest.

‘If he had allowed us to communicate with the life-forms…’ Hamilton cut in.

‘I’m sorry.’ Daniel put his hand up as he interrupted. Hamilton turned to him startled as though he had forgotten the archaeologist was there. ‘You’ve just put forward two contradictory theories.’ He pointed out to the scientist. ‘Either the life-forms were unintelligent and no more than animals or they were intelligent and worthy of communication.’

‘He’s right.’ Bill realised. ‘We assumed they were intelligent but then we treated them like animals.’ He sighed. ‘Major Carter was probably right.’ He glanced at Daniel and saw his quizzical expression. ‘She theorised the life-forms had attacked us after we captured one of them.’

‘Colonel O’Neill should still have allowed us to investigate the life-forms when we wanted to.’ Hamilton continued to argue.

‘I’m sure if Jack stopped you, he had a good reason.’ Daniel said slowly in defence of his team-mate. ‘He was probably just wanting to make sure you were safe.’

‘Exactly.’ Bill nodded. ‘He was incredible, Doctor Jackson. He saved our lives.’

Hamilton looked about to reply but a nurse appeared and dragged him into the MRI room.

Bill and Daniel exchanged a relieved look.

‘You’ll have to forgive, Stephen.’ Bill said. ‘He’s not used to working for the military.’ He paused. ‘I don’t think any of us are.’

‘It does take some getting used to.’ Daniel agreed gently.

Another nurse appeared and Bill stood up. ‘If you see Colonel O’Neill, can you thank him again for me?’

‘Sure.’ Daniel sighed in relief as he was left alone.

An hour later, cleared by Janet and showered, he headed into the small private room Jack had been assigned. He slipped into the room and nodded at Teal’c. Jack was curled up in the bed but his grey head rose from the pillow and looked over a shoulder to acknowledge Daniel.

‘Hey.’ Jack shifted into a sitting position and waved Daniel in. ‘Teal’c said you were back.’

‘Yeah.’ Daniel shoved his hands in his pockets. ‘So I hear you had some fun?’

Jack grimaced. ‘Depends on your definition of fun.’

‘Life-forms that could zip through matter?’ Daniel took another couple of steps into the room. ‘I thought you would have thought that was cool.’

‘Indeed he did.’ Teal’c confirmed with a slight lift to his lips.

Jack shot him a look. ‘Until they started zipping through me!’ He gestured at Daniel. ‘How’d you get out of this gig anyway?’

‘The Ankari.’ Daniel shrugged. ‘I’m the only one who can talk to them.’

‘Of course you are.’ Jack said without heat.

‘You didn’t want to talk with the life-form?’ Daniel baited him mercilessly.

‘It was a small, buzzing…thing.’ Jack began heatedly before he caught the hint of mischief in Daniel’s eyes. ‘Funny.’ He remarked.

‘I told Hamilton you just wanted to make sure everyone was safe.’ Daniel explained as he took a seat.

‘Thank you!’ Jack waved a hand at him. ‘Why’d do you get that and they don’t?’

‘I’m used to you.’ Daniel pointed out. He could see the question of whether Daniel considered that a good thing or not flicker through Jack’s brown eyes. ‘Doctor Lee wanted me to thank you again.’ The archaeologist added hastily.

Jack leaned back on the pillows and fussed with his covers. ‘It was Carter’s plan.’

Daniel looked around as though noticing Sam’s absence for the first time. ‘Where is Sam anyway?’

‘She’s taking her Mini-Carter back to the Academy.’ Jack replied.

‘Mini-Carter?’ Daniel questioned, trying and failing to keep the smile from his lips.

‘She had a cadet from the Academy with her.’ Jack said. ‘Thinks the kid could be some kind of genius.’

‘Is she?’ Daniel asked genuinely interested.

‘How should I know?’ Jack shrugged. ‘Carter seems to think so.’

‘Guess she’s probably right then.’ Daniel concluded.

‘She usually is.’ Jack said, his voice ringing with the confidence he had in the team’s resident astrophysicist. ‘She usually is.’

o-O-o

‘I still think I was right about the creatures.’ Jennifer Hailey said as Major Carter walked her to the door of the Academy dormitory.

‘You could have been.’ Sam agreed easily. The young woman beside her was brilliant and the theory she had put forward had merit. Now they were safely back on Earth and a course of action wasn’t dependent on it, Sam figured she could give her some praise for it. ‘They obviously responded to electro-magnetic energy. It would have been fascinating to have learned more about them.’

They came to a stop outside the entrance.

‘I guess we’ll never know.’ Sam continued. ‘General Hammond has locked the address out of the system. Even if you’re right, it’s is too risky for us to return.’

‘It’s not about being right.’ Jennifer said quietly. She looked across at Sam. ‘I understand that now.’ She drew herself up. ‘It’s about protecting your team like Colonel O’Neill did for us.’

Sam heard the hint of hero-worship and kept the smile off her face with difficulty. It looked like the Colonel had made another fan and in all honesty she couldn’t fault the cadet for her taste. ‘I’m glad to hear you say that, Cadet.’

‘I wish I didn’t have to come back here.’ Jennifer admitted, letting her guard down a little more. ‘Being there, seeing that place…’ she shook her head, the carefully constructed chignon staying in place. ‘It was incredible, ma’am.’

‘If you apply yourself, do your assignments and work hard, you’ll be back.’ Sam said firmly.

Jennifer nodded. ‘Yes, ma’am.’ She smiled, the genuine pleasure lighting up her face. ‘Thank you for giving me the experience.’

Sam felt a wave of delight. ‘Don’t waste it.’

‘I won’t.’ Jennifer promised.

She began to turn away and Sam almost moved away but suddenly the cadet whirled back around to her.

‘Ma’am?’ Jennifer asked hesitantly. ‘May I ask you a question?’

Sam nodded sharply. ‘Of course, Cadet.’

‘How do you handle knowing you’re smarter than your COs?’ Jennifer asked. ‘Not Colonel O’Neill, ma’am.’ She added hurriedly. ‘I was meaning generally.’

Sam motioned at a nearby bench and they walked over to sit on. Neither of them relaxed; their body language still professional, posture parade ground perfect.

‘I won’t lie to you, Cadet,’ Sam began as she considered how to answer the question, ‘there have been times in my career when I have reported to someone who knew less about my area of expertise than I did.’ She wet her lips, recalling her experience with General Bauer. ‘And they’ve made decisions dismissing my opinion when I’ve known, when I’ve been sure without a question of a doubt that they are wrong and I’m right.’

‘What did you do?’ Jennifer asked curious.

‘I protested.’ Sam admitted.

‘And then?’ Jennifer prompted.

Sam met the cadet’s gaze directly. ‘And then I followed my orders.’

‘Even when you knew they were making a mistake?’ Jennifer looked a little disbelieving.

Sam adjusted her position and gestured at her. ‘If you decide not to follow a direct order, you have to have a really good reason, Cadet. Unless the order is clearly unlawful, you can’t decide which orders you follow and which you don’t.’ Most of the time, she added mentally. She had disobeyed orders in the past to save Earth; bent them to save a team-mate. She probably shouldn’t mention those to an impressionable cadet though.

Jennifer considered her words. ‘I understand, ma’am.’

‘You also have to consider that normally it’s a team effort, Cadet.’ Sam continued. ‘Take SG1. I may know more about astrophysics and science than the Colonel, Teal’c and Daniel, but they all have knowledge and experience that I don’t. Daniel knows more languages than I do and he brings his knowledge of the mythologies and cultures to the team. Teal’c brings years of experience and he was trained in different fighting techniques and strategy employed by our enemies. The Colonel is also brilliant at strategy and tactics. We work together to get the best result.’ She gestured at Jennifer. ‘I may be right about my part but ultimately, the Colonel will decide a plan based on what is best tactically.’

‘Like he did today.’ Jennifer nodded in understanding.

Sam gave her a pleased smile. ‘Exactly. You should report in. I don’t want to get you in trouble.’

Jennifer rose from the bench. ‘Thank you again, ma’am.’

Sam watched her enter the building and turned away. She made her way back to her car and checked her watch. She should probably go straight home, Sam considered, but she decided to return to the SGC. The Colonel was in the infirmary and Daniel had been due back from being off-world. It didn’t take her long before she was back in the confines of the mountain and back in her comfortable BDUs. She ran into General Hammond in the corridor as she made her way to the infirmary.

‘Sir.’

Hammond smiled at her, his pale blue eyes warming. ‘Your cadet get back to the Academy safely?’

‘Yes, sir.’ Sam smiled back at him. ‘Thank you for allowing me to show her the Stargate, sir. I think it has made a difference.’

‘Walk with me, Major.’ Hammond requested. She acquiesced and they turned down the corridor. ‘I’ve been thinking we need to strengthen our training programme.’

‘Sir?’

‘Add in a real life simulation of some kind that the trainees would not necessarily know is a simulation.’

‘Like the war games that the Jaffa and the Goa’uld use.’ Sam realised.

‘I’ve been thinking about it since you discovered the war game a while back.’ Hammond admitted. ‘We would do the same although without the bloodshed. I tend to agree with Teal’c that we can’t really determine if someone is ready unless we’ve seen them stand up in a real life situation.’ He gestured at her. ‘General Kerrigan will be assigned to the run the new programme.’

Sam nodded, pleased. ‘He’s a good choice, sir.’

‘He is.’ Hammond’s smile widened. ‘I’d like you and the rest of SG1 to work with General Kerrigan to establish a viable scenario for next week’s training exercise.’

‘Next week, sir?’ Sam almost stopped walking. ‘I, er, thought SG8 were scheduled to manage the trainees next week.’

‘Unfortunately, two of SG8 are down with the flu, Major. SG1 is being assigned in their place.’ Hammond informed her.

‘Does the Colonel know, sir?’ Sam asked tentatively. Dealing with the trainees wasn’t exactly on the Colonel’s list of favourite activities.

‘I’ll leave you to inform him and the rest of SG1, Major.’ Hammond said, a glint of mischief in his eyes. ‘Dismissed.’

Sam was barely aware of acknowledging the dismissal and turning in the opposite direction to take her back towards the infirmary room. Maybe she should ignore the order to tell the Colonel, Sam considered. Her words to Hailey came back to her; it was the military, she followed orders. She sighed and entered the room.

‘Carter.’ Jack greeted her with a smile; Teal’c with a nod. Daniel got up and gave her a hug before he waved her into the seat he had just occupied and pulled another one over.

‘How are you feeling, sir?’ Sam asked delaying her news.

‘Better.’ Jack replied. ‘I don’t know why I’m stuck in here.’

‘Uh, sir?’ Sam cleared her throat. ‘General Hammond asked me to inform everyone that we will be managing the training exercises next week.’ She quickly elaborated filling the others in on her conversation with the General.

‘You’re kidding me.’ Jack muttered.

‘I’m afraid not, sir.’ Sam sympathised. She smiled at him brightly. ‘But when you think about it, coming up with a scenario could be fun.’

‘Fun.’ Jack repeated with a glare.

‘It is not fun.’ Teal’c said firmly.

‘See.’ Jack pointed at Teal’c.

‘It is a serious endeavour to determine which of your warriors will excel in battle.’ Teal’c continued.

They all looked at him.

Jack returned his glare to Sam.

‘With respect, sir, I agree with Teal’c.’ Sam said. ‘It is a good way of assessing the skills of the trainees and,’ she smiled, ‘it could be fun.’

‘I think Sam’s right.’ Daniel said with a smirk as Jack continued to scowl at their female team-mate.

‘Can Daniel get shot in this training scenario?’ Jack asked without moving his gaze from Sam.

Sam’s lips twitched. ‘Sure, sir.’

‘Sam!’ Daniel protested with a laugh.

‘Sweet.’ Jack grinned at Sam. ‘You’re absolutely right.’ He pointed at her, his warm chocolate eyes sparkling with humour. ‘This is going to be fun.’

Daniel complained and Sam sat back to enjoy the banter as Teal’c joined in the teasing. It was definitely a team effort, Sam thought with satisfaction. She might not have been right about the creatures on M4C862 and time would tell about Cadet Hailey, but she knew she was right about one thing; SG1 worked as a team.

fin.

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