Disclaimer Stargate Sg-1 and its characters are the property of Stargate (II) Productions, Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, and Gekko Productions. This story is for entertainment purposes only and no money exchanged hands. No copyright infringement is intended. The original characters, situations, and story are the property of the author. This story may not be posted elsewhere without the consent of the author.
"Very well. That will be all. SG-1, you're on stand down for 48 hours." With those words, General Hammond gained his feet and left the briefing room.
Four people silently watched their leader leave; each mired in their own thoughts.
Almost as if by an unconscious communication, each of them got to their feet and trailed out of the room.
The SF standing by the doorway noted there was none of the banter, no teasing or chatter. Whatever had happened on Abydos, it must have been a doozy, he concluded as the quartet split each going off in different directions.
God I need to get out of here. I need to find somewhere to hide. Hide from what happened.
Hide from the fact that it should have been mine.
My wife, my son.
When I had that midwife show me what to do I'd always dreamed about delivering my own child. Maybe it's silly but I've always wanted that sense of completion. Making the child together, then bringing it into the world together.
And I did that. I brought it into the world. It was my wife but not my child. It was Apophis'.
How had it…he been conceived? What else has Shau'ri hidden from me? What other secrets did she keep behind those beautiful soulful eyes of hers? Did Apophis force her? Did he violate her body as Amaunet has violated her mind?
And the child. The tiny, defenseless scrap of humanity I've hidden away from her, cast to the sands of Abydos like Yoshabel cast Moses to the Nile.
An innocent child I had to hide. Hide from his father, his mother, his mortal enemy and perhaps his own destiny.
How I wish the events of the morning had remained hidden. How I wish I could hide the despair. Hide from the questions, the horrible pain I felt when I handed the child to Kasuf. A child I so desperately wanted to be my own. Handed over to the care of a stranger like I'd been handed off all those years before.
Right now I need to hide. Away from my friends, my feelings, my pain. I need to hide from myself.
I stride down the halls, avoiding the eyes of the personnel I meet. I have to get out of here. Find somewhere to hide. Away from accusing eyes. Away from the guilt. From the blood on my hands.
I did exactly what I was supposed to. The reporter knew too much. I told my superior. That's how it works. If you think there's a problem, you tell your boss and he tells you how to fix it.
Oh I'm no innocent. I know people die. Hell I've pulled the trigger myself a time or two. Some of those damned distasteful things I've done. But oddly enough, the blood has never literally been on my hands before.
I need to go. Be alone. Find a quiet corner. Work through my emotions in private. I need to lock myself in a room until I can hide the disgust and distrust behind my oh so comfortable façade of sarcastic indifference.
In a perverted way, I was glad to see Heru'ur. It felt so satisfying to do physical damage. It's too bad snaky ran away. The mood I'm in right now, nothing would feel better than to tan his hide.
I walk down the halls; barely noticing my teammates aren't with me. I need to get away. Find myself a private little nook, away from the prying eyes, the curious looks, the congratulations, and curl up and hide.
Hide from the truth. From the four little words that keep echoing through my brain.
'I have cancer Sam.'
Maybe I should go to my lab and work on something. Get my mind so wrapped around a problem that I can hide from the truth. From the death sentence my dad just pronounced on himself.
He's dying. I'm going to be an orphan. A thirty something, gun toting astrophysicist Oliver Twist.
And the worst part of it is, I have to lie to him. I have to hide the truth about who I am and what I do. I have to hide my whole life from him. I can't tell him not only have I attained beyond my wildest dreams and am spending my days exploring alien planets, I'm part alien. I have the memories and abilities left over from an alien invading my body.
Just a little bit longer. I just need to hold it together a little while longer. I need to go have myself a good cry. Let the tears come to the surface so I can keep them hidden when I come back. As dad often said, Air Force captains don't cry.
I know the perfect place to hide.
I watch my friends go off in their own directions. This is not a normal occurrence. Usually we leave a briefing making plans to get together in some way. Today however, the body language of my friends tells me, together is the last thing they want. Their motions scream stay away.
A sentiment I also feel. I need to go to my quarters and immerse myself in kel-no-rem. Perhaps in the depths of meditation I can find a place to hide. Hide from the guilt. Hide from the shame. Hide from all the horrible things I have done. Hide from the disgust I am sure is in their eyes.
My actions had condemned Shau'ri to a living death once, and today I did it again.
What has changed so much that I now feel the need to hide from my past? While I am not proud of my actions, I have never wanted to hide from them before. What is it about my friends that makes me feel shame?
In an instant I decide not to go to my quarters. Not yet. I choose another destination and go towards the elevator. I know a perfect place to hide.
Outside the mountain I pause for a moment to take a deep breath. It sounds silly really but there isn't another planet I've ever been on that smells quite like Earth. Allergies and all.
On impulse I slip my keys into my pocket and begin to walk. As much as I want to hide, I'm not quite ready to go home yet.
I sit on the fallen log and watch the traffic below through watery eyes. I almost made it to the privacy of my home. And if it wasn't for the heart felt concern of one of the SFs asking me if I'm all right, wondering if I'm ok to drive and then offering me a ride home, I would have made it.
The simple thoughtfulness of a Sargent was just too much. Guess I'm not as good at hiding my emotions as I thought.
Unable to stop the tears I'd meant to shed in private, I instinctively seek the closest bit of privacy I can find.
Climbing the path up the mountain hadn't been easy in the gathering gloom. Fortunately I'm a frequent visitor to the mountainside and my memory filled in what my eyes couldn't see.
Sitting under the heavens I no longer have to hide from my emotions. Hot tears slide down by face as I watch the moon rise.
I cross the clearing, not quite sure why I'm here. You'd think as plagued by trees as I seem to be nature would be my last refuge.
My eyes catch a movement and I stop. Damn it. Someone else is up here. For a second I contemplate turning and leaving. If this is some secret rendezvous, the less I know about it the better.
The figure tilts her head and I catch a flash of blond hair. She, and it is a she, don't ask me how I know but I just do, uses her shirtsleeve to wipe her face. I recognize those movements. Carter. What the hell is she doing hiding up here? And why is she crying?
I've only seen her cry three times in the past year and a half. When she was down in that bunker with Cassie. After that hypnotism session and after Jolinar.
I start to turn to leave. She's obviously come up here for some privacy, to hide her tears. No. I turn back. Hiding my emotions cost me my marriage, and nearly my life. Like Daniel once said, she can carry that detachment thing too far.
I silently stand in the shadow of a large tree, listening to the bits of conversation.
Illuminated by the relatively bright light of the full moon, my three friends are sitting on a fallen log, talking.
'I…this sounds stupid but I feel as guilty as if I'd driven the car.'
'I wanted that baby to be mine. I feel like I abandoned him, like I used to feel my parents abandoned me.'
'More than anything in the world, I wanted to tell him. Instead of showing him my office, I wanted to show him the world…any world. Just once I wanted him to be proud of me.'
I listen to their words, knowing each was revealing something they would prefer remain hidden.
There is no censure, no laughing, just an acceptance of each other. I should go back in and meditate but an invisible hand stills my movement. With a sigh I turn and walk towards them.
Not surprisingly O'Neill hears me first. With a small smile and a few words he welcomes me to the group. I gratefully sit beside my friends, awed by their continued acceptance of me. During a lull in their conversation I begin to speak, knowing I no longer have a reason to hide.