Sam groaned and tried to sit up, several small pieces of crystal and other debris falling from her as she did so.
"Samantha?" Martouf asked, concerned. "Are you okay?" He pushed the fallen piece of crystal from where it had impacted with his leg, and carefully stood.
"Yeah...I think so...mostly." She grimaced as she touched a sore spot on her head, carefully feeling the bump. She tried to stand, but cried out as she put weight on her left leg, and she fell and landed hard on her butt again. "Auch!"
Martouf hurried to her side, limping slightly. "Careful, Samantha! You are hurt!"
"So are you - you're limping, and your leg's bleeding." Sam looked at him in the semi-darkness, the glow from the remaining crystals greatly diminished. She slowly straightened up, leaning a little against the wall behind her, but did not try to stand.
He looked down at his pants, seeing the bloody stain just below his knee. "Lantash assures me nothing is broken - it's just a...scratch."
"A gash, you mean." Sam corrected, seeing the blood was still seeping into the clothing. She shook her head, then winced as she did so. "Whoa..." She steadied herself. "Damn - I think I must have hit...my head...harder than I thought..." She blinked a couple of times, trying to clear the mist that was slowly descending in her head.
Worried, Martouf kneeled beside her, favouring his uninjured leg. "Let me look at your head." He carefully examined the wound, then held his hand over her forehead, like the Tok'ra sometimes did when checking on a fellow Tok'ra.
"Does that tell you anything when you're doing it to a human? Whatever it is that it tells you otherwise..." Sam scrambled for her radio, and found it.
"When that human is you, then yes." He sighed. "I believe you have a concussion. Not bad enough to be dangerous, but severe enough that moving will be...unpleasant."
"I kind of guessed that." Sam smiled wryly. She activated her radio. "Carter here. Anyone out there?" She got no response, except for static noise. She tried again, with the same result. "It doesn't seem broken - maybe it's something in the ground that's blocking the signal."
"Perhaps." Martouf agreed. "What you asked before...in someone with naquadah in their blood, the energy signature changes somewhat depending on their physical condition. We can detect that." He sat down, stretching his injured leg in front of him. "Let me examine your leg."
"I don't think it's broken - but it hurts like hell." She moved her leg a little to better allow him to take a look. "It didn't hurt at first, but when I put weight on it, it sure did."
"It was probably numb at first." Martouf gently prodded the leg.
Sam cried out. "Well, it's not numb anymore, that's for sure!"
He nodded. "No, but neither is it broken. There is some minor bleeding, and it will undoubtedly be sore for some time, though." He sighed. "I wish I had a healing device."
"I'll be okay. I've been worse." She smiled reassuringly at him. Looking around the room, she noticed she could see no way out, and her expression grew more grim. "The tunnel out of here seems to have collapsed."
"Yes." He picked up her water canteen and opened it before handing it to her. "Drink some water, then try to rest a little. I shall attempt to find us a way out of here."
"Thanks." She took a long drink, then handed the canteen back to him and closed her eyes, before leaning back against the wall again.
Martouf drank some water as well, then got up and started looking around.
Sam, together with O'Neill, Teal'c, SG-17, and many of the Tok'ra, had been trapped in the Tok'ra tunnels when the Goa'uld Zipacna attacked Revanna. The Goa'uld was unusually persistent and it would only be a matter of time before he and his Jaffa found their way down into the tunnels. He was still bombing them from orbit, and it was causing the tunnels to collapse.
The Tok'ra were destroying the computers in order to avoid any important data to fall into the hands of Zipacna, and Sam and Martouf/Lantash had been in Ren'al's laboratory to get a copy of the data on the symbiote poison, before destroying the computers. That was when an explosion on the ground directly above them had caused large portions of the roof to cave in, trapping them.
Martouf checked the collapsed tunnel, and then the entire laboratory, before returning to where Sam was sitting.
"I am afraid there is no way out. The tunnel is completely blocked, and more crystals fell when I attempted to move some of those that were obstructing the passage. Most of the laboratory is destroyed, including the computers."
"Well, look on the bright side - at least the Goa'uld won't be able to get anything out of those computers - and we did get the data and the matrix for the symbiote poison before the computers were destroyed."
"True. Now we must just hope we will be rescued - or find a way to collapse the tunnels completely on ourselves - before Zipacna's Jaffa arrive and capture us, taking this valuable data from us."
"Always the optimist." Sam rolled her eyes.
"The roofs of the storage room behind the laboratory has caved in, and I cannot get to anything in there. Among other things, I had hoped to find a healing device, but at least I got this." He handed her a vial. "Drink it."
She did, making a face. "Yeach...what was that?!"
"A drug meant to help you regain your strength and recuperate faster."
Sam nodded slowly. "I recognize it now - from Jolinar."
"Yes, it is intended for Tok'ra, of course. To help the symbiote so it can better heal itself and its host, if they are in a bad shape and cannot easily get help from someone with a healing device, for example."
"But it works on humans too?"
"At least it will do you no harm...and Lantash believes it should help you." He smiled wryly. "He is usually correct about such things."
"All right." Sam smiled back at him. "I noticed just before that you're not limping anymore."
"No, Lantash has stopped the bleeding and the wound is healing well. It is no longer of consequence."
"I'm envious!" She sighed, moving a little and trying to sit more comfortably. The movement increased the pain in her head and she groaned softly.
"Perhaps you should lie down?" Martouf suggested, concerned.
"No, I'm okay." Sam assured him, picking up the radio. "I better try this again." She activated it. "Hello, Carter here. Come in, Colonel, Teal'c? Anyone!" She sighed, turning it off. "No response."
Martouf nodded. "We must hope they have made it to safety, at least."
Sam slowly opened her eyes again, realising she had slept for several minutes. She felt better, so the drug had obviously helped. She turned to glance at Martouf. He looked so serious, clearly worried about the situation and probably thinking about what would happen to them all - or perhaps discussing possible solutions with Lantash?
She had been very relieved to see him again. These last many months had been hard, and she had worried about Martouf - and Lantash - often. By now she had almost stopped believing she would ever see him again.
Sam looked at him again. It was nice sitting here beside him, nice to just be with him again, and she realised how much she had missed him. She sighed. She really wished the situation was different.
Martouf noticed she was looking at him, and turned to her. "Samantha."
Sam smiled at him. "I...have missed you. It was a surprise seeing you today...don't get me wrong, it was a very pleasant surprise, but very unexpected. You've been in stasis for such a long time, and I've been trying to get information about how you were doing for months. Any information, but they've been stone-walling me the whole time," she said, frustrated.
"I have been told there were some disagreement over whether to risk letting Lantash attempt to heal me or not. Fortunately for me, they decided in favour of it, and Lantash succeeded in healing us both."
"You're completely healed? Both of you?"
He bowed his head, transferring control to Lantash.
"Yes, we are both well, Samantha."
"Lantash...it's...been a long time since I talked to you." She smiled a little. "I'm glad you're okay."
"As am I, though I wish the circumstances were better." He looked at the roof, worried, as an explosion could be heard somewhere above them. Dust, but thankfully nothing else, fell from the roof. "Samantha..."
"Yes?" She threw a nervous glance at the roof as another explosion - closer this time - caused more dust and small pieces of broken crystals to fall.
He took her hand. "If we do not get out of here alive...I want you to know..." He swallowed, getting an - for him- very uncharacteristic, uncertain expression. "I love you, Samantha. As much as I loved Jolinar...we both do."
Sam looked at him, surprised, and not really sure she had heard him correctly. Not sure she dared hope she heard him right. This was not what she had expected him to say. "Um...Lantash...that's...uh...you love me?"
He nodded, looking even more apprehensive, clearly worried she would reject him. "Yes, I do."
"I...that's..." Sam felt like an idiot, and could not find the words to answer him.
He suddenly frowned, then quickly rose. "I am a fool!"
"Wait! Lantash!" Sam called after him, starting to get up to follow him. Stop him, so she could tell him she was not rejecting him, which he seemed to think.
She immediately regretted her sudden movement, when her head began to pound again. She sighed unhappily and sat back down, trying to think about how to respond to what Lantash had just told her.
She did have feelings for him...them, but she was still unsure if she wanted to act on them. Until earlier that day she had feared both Martouf and Lantash dead, then she had learned they were alive and well - and now they were trapped here together with her, all of them at high risk of not making it out alive. There were many reasons for Sam to think hard about this before making a decision, Jolinar - and the fact that they lived on different planets - just being two of many potential obstacles to a relationship.
"Tunnel crystals!" Lantash shouted back at her, as he hurried to the other end of the laboratory.
Sam could not see him from where she was sitting, but she could hear him move something aside, not caring that various stuff clattered to the ground as he did so. A few moments later he returned with a small, battered chest.
"What's that?" Sam wondered, momentarily thrown out of her thoughts about their possible future together.
Lantash opened it. "Tunnel crystals. I suddenly remembered I had seen a chest with some of them, in here, earlier today. I did not notice it when I looked through the laboratory just before, as it was hidden under several pieces of fallen crystal, but it was easy enough to find it when I remembered its location."
"That's nice, but what..." Sam suddenly grinned. "You're going to use a tunnel crystal to make a new tunnel out of here!"
He nodded, smiling a little at her, glad the awkwardness from before was gone. "Yes." He opened the box and rummaged through it. "I need a small, square one, in order to make a short, straight piece of tunnel...here!" He held up the one he had just found.
"That's great!" Sam looked around. "We should probably use it to try and re-open that corridor..." She pointed.
"I agree. It would be the safest choice." He looked at her with concern. "We do not know what we will find outside, and we may have to move quickly. Can you walk?"
"Yes, I think so. Wait, I'll just test the radio again."
Lantash nodded. "Yes, do that. It would be advantageous to know what awaits us. It is unfortunate we do not have a Tok'ra communicator."
Sam activated the radio again. "Carter here. Come in."
The radio made a static noise, then suddenly a voice came through. "Teal'c here. Where are you?"
"Lantash and I are stranded in Ren'al's laboratory. The tunnel out has collapsed, but we're going to try and make a new one with a crystal. Are there any Jaffa in the tunnels, or are we clear?"
"Some of Zipacna's Jaffa have penetrated the tunnel system. We have killed several, but there may be others. Also, more will be coming, so you should hurry, if at all possible."
"Understood. We'll be careful. Carter out." She turned off the radio. "Well, you heard Teal'c. There may be Jaffa in the tunnels."
"We both have a zat'nik'tel, though I must admit I wish we were better armed." He sighed. "Regardless, we should leave as quickly as possible."
"Yeah, I know." Sam began to get up, and Lantash helped her, making sure she did not fall. She stood still for a few moments, waiting for the pain in her head to subside again, then nodded slowly. "I'm okay."
"Drink a little more of this, it seemed to help you." He gave her some more of the drug, which she downed quickly. "Good." He put an arm around her. "I will support you."
"Thanks." Sam leaned against his shoulder, accepting the help. She imagined she could feel the drug helping already. They walked to stand just beside where the tunnel had collapsed, and Sam leaned lightly against the wall while Lantash found a good place to activate the tunnel crystal.
"Samantha...are you ready?"
"Yes...wait!" She suddenly made a decision, taking a step towards him and grabbing one of his hands. "Did you mean it? What you said before, about...about loving me?"
"Yes." Lantash confirmed, sounding slightly apprehensive.
"And Martouf feels the same?"
Lantash bowed his head, giving Martouf control.
"Yes, of course. You know we feel the same."
Sam smiled. "Good. I...kind of have feelings for you, too...both of you." She took a deep breath. "I love you." She leaned in, giving him a quick kiss.
Martouf smiled, relieved. "Thank you. You have no idea how much we have wanted to hear that." He pulled her closer, kissing her. "My sweet Samantha..." He ran his fingers lovingly through her hair, taking care not to touch the area that hurt. He sighed, clearly wishing they had more time, then gave control back to Lantash, who might be slightly faster with the zat'nik'tel, should Jaffa be waiting for them.
Lantash did not let go of Sam immediately, but leaned in and kissed her again, slowly moving his lips against hers. Sam closed her eyes and lost herself in the kiss, for a short time allowing herself to forget the situation they were in.
Suddenly, Sam's radio crackled, and she sighed, letting go of Lantash. "Carter here."
"This is Daniel. Jacob and I have just picked up Jack and Teal'c - our teltac is hidden under some trees, but we can's stay here for long. If you can get to the rings, then we can do a very quick sweep over the area and pick you up."
"Very quick - and better now than in five minutes." Jacob added.
Sam held the radio out to Lantash, who took it.
"I believe we can do it, as long as no Jaffa are waiting for us, and there are no further collapsed sections of this tunnel."
"Okay, Lantash. We're waiting. Jacob, out."
Lantash took out the tunnel crystal again. "The nearest ring transporter is less than 100 feet away, but we will have to run. Can you do that?"
Sam nodded. "Yeah, I think so."
They both held their zat'nik'tel's at the ready as Lantash activated the tunnel crystal. Sam marvelled again at the technology as the short piece of tunnel formed.
Lantash grabbed hold of Sam, pulling her along and supporting her, so she did not have to put her full weight on her injured leg, as they ran towards the ring transporter. While they could hear the Jaffa close by, they did not meet any of them on the way.
As Lantash had said, the rings where not far away, and they reached them quickly. Lantash - who still held the radio - turned it on.
"Lantash, here. We're standing on the ring transporter now."
"Okay, coming for you...get ready..." Jacob answered through the radio.
"Jaffa!" Sam exclaimed, quickly shooting the first that appeared around the corner, before he could fire at them.
Lantash raised his own zat'nik'tel and shot the next, just as the rings activated, pulling them along to the teltac. The last they saw before de-materialising, was the Jaffa swarming the room, but by then they were already safely away.
Sam and Martouf/Lantash re-materialised on the teltac, and saw Daniel, Teal'c, and O'Neill waiting for them.
"They're here!" Daniel yelled, and Jacob immediately accelerated the teltac, taking them out of there.
Sam smiled at Lantash and Martouf, and they smiled back at her, as the teltac sped out into space. They were safe - and they had a chance of a future together!