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ACT 5 ACT 2: The Impossible Symphony

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"Jude Harley, some call you the Mage of Void, any idea why?"

"Hell if I know, sir. It's... honestly one of those confusing titles that nobody ever really thinks through until it becomes a relevant question, I guess. They say John is a Heir of Breath, but what does Breath have to do with Wind based powers?"

"So... flowery nonsense?"

"I suppose so, though, if I had to put something to it, I'd say it's due to me being able to make just about anything I can set my mind to. Like a mage drawing an object from the void, maybe? Ah, but some people can literally pull things out of thin air even without a sylladex, so what do I know?"

"Like miss Lalonde in the aftermath of the cloning incident."

"Yeah. Like that. No idea how she's managed it but it's a thing."

"So, what are your thoughts on the Alternian girl who looks like your sister, Colonel Claire?"

"Ah, well. They spent so much time together on Alternia and Colonel Claire's got our mom's maiden name, plus they've got the same first name, so it's pretty easy to think of one as Sis, and the other as Sis from another universe... And believe me, I've met a lot of Alt-verse Joeys."

"Two incidents involving the Quantum Mirror that I've got on noted record."

"Yeah. The one from the Broken 1969 Loop World is pretty nice. We stay in touch, though lately she's busy working with Silica and Keiko on the Aincrad side of things."

"And the other?"

"...The clingy Joey. Yeah... I really hope we don't run into her again if she holds a grudge."

"Always a reasonable concern."

"Yeah."

"Do you have any concerns towards Disclosure?"

"Only that if it happens, I'm requesting that to the people watching this, you just... leave our families alone, okay? No pesky reporters outside our houses at all times of the night, no surprise interivews or what-ever lurking behind any corner... No people watching our kids outside of school like a bunch of perverts, got it??"

"I think that's a perfectly valid request, all things considered. Anything else?"

"Hmm... To all the conspiracy nuts out there like I used to be when I was a kid? You'd be better off trying to join the SGC than fighting against it. 'Exposing' stuff the SGC's trying to hide...? Even if there's stuff that doesn't get covered by Disclosure, don't try to dig it up. Chances are we're burying it for the sake of EVERYONE'S SANITY! Either that, or its a case of some really dangerous people out there doing really dangerous things."

"Like Anubis and English."

"Yeah, like them! And- say- if SOMEHOW this comes out and one or both of them Haven't Attacked Earth yet? Well, consider that a lucky break, or us somehow putting a stop to it before things could get out of hand."

"And if this comes out after such an attack that's been repulsed?"

"Well, if you're watching this, and the world ISN'T currently being dominated by a vicious former-Goa'uld-turned-spirit-ghost-robot, or a megalomaniac child parading around in a giant snake mech? Well... All I've got to say is there's one Team Designation who almost certainly put in a lot of effort in the local Galaxy to make a normal life possible."

"While I know who you're talking about... For the camera... And who would that be?"

"That'd be SG-1!"

Chapter Text

PREVIOUSLY ON STARGATE SG-1 AND STARGATE ALTERNIA...



"AUNT CLAIRE!" A young girl runs up and hugs Joey Claire's legs tightly.



Okurii shakes her head. "Apparently she was born inside a time dilation bubble in an abbey."
"An Abbey?" Joey frowns. "Do you think she meant Abydos?"
"Probably," Latula nods.



A burst of crimson energy shot down from the center of Anubis' Mothership- hitting the connected point of all the lasers, and then shot down with a lickering orange aura surrounding it.
It struck the Pyramid's top and then punched through every single layer of it until it hit the Stargate. The Stargate which had been hard wired directly into the place the Eye of Ra had once been held.
And then...
The Pyramid began UN-exploding- chunks and debris flying back together and then collapsing into a solid form as the laser suddenly retracted upwards into the sky where it concluded, absorbing back into the array that stopped sparking lasers together in reverse.



"MY LORD!" Her'ak cried out in surprise. "An Object suddenly appeared to intercept the Laser! The Weapon's Core is drawing ten times as much power as it should to compensate!"
"WHAT!?" Anubis yelled out in anger.



And then his ship exploded.



"And you're sure this Avenger Virus will do as we expect it to and prevent Ba'al from using his Stargate?" Hammond asks. "No unforeseen consequences?"



"I said, "We Can't Dial the Gate" Sir!" O'neill answers, staring in at an angle into a MALP camera.
"But that's impossible!" Callie protests. "The virus can't be behind this!"
"Virus?" O'neill pauses, then asks- "Felger's project!? I THOUGHT I TOLD YOU NOT TO TRUST THAT BROWN NOSING LITTLE WEASEL!!"


"Avenger isn't supposed to Target the Correlative Updates even if it's affecting it," Felger reminds nobody but himself. "And even if it did, how the hell did Avenger even get ONTO a Supergate in the first place? A regular Stargate can't dial to a Supergate, can it? "



Anubis brings up a holographic communication screen- one featuring yet another previously written message. "AND SO ENDS OUR ALLIANCE, ENGLISH."
He presses SEND.



"I THINK THAT'S ENOUGH!" The girl with orange hair yelled out, tiredly, at the figure in the black KULL WARRIOR ARMOR who just started to get to their feet. "I REALLY THINK THAT'S JUST ABOUT ENOUGH OF ALL OF THIS!!" She took a deep breath, and yelled out, "BA'AL!!"
The figure in black tore off their mask, and let their- HER- face be exposed to the burning environment.
The snarling, blue skinned face of ADRIA stared back at the girl, eyes flashing with the tell-tale possession of a Goa'uld.
"Polendina," They snarl.



“Aunt Joey,” Penny smiles. “I’m glad you came.”
“Well, when Tyzias dialed out, radioed and said there was something I just had to see,” Joey says, “I wasn’t expecting you.”
Penny then gets a serious look on her face. “Around this time, Anubis is preparing to make a grand move against the rest of Milky Way, and also, against English. English is going to be mad, and he’s going to withdraw all of his military conquests across the multiverse to attack Milky Way personally. After he’s finished destroying Anubis, it’s going to be hell for everyone.”



English's forces emerge from the Supergate in Milky Way, a fleet of massive proportions ready to deal a lot of damage.



“I’d like to prevent the atrocities that she committed against everyone by setting things into motion early.” Penny decaptchalogues a familiar looking Replicator Brick shaped storage crystal. “This contains everything you need to know.”



Ganos exhales in disbelief. “The Ark of Truth. She’s correct, that sort of object would sever the ties between the Ori and their Followers... but if English truely is using the same connection..."



Standing before his crowd of kneeling Alternian Trolls, Anubis's metallic frame basks in the glow of energy from his worshipers.



"We believe English is launching a multi-dimensional invasion," Okurii looks Joey in the eyes and says, "When you gather your team, Colonel, make sure you mention that the Ark is not the only objective you'll be targeting over there. Your other half of this mission is to find and permanently stop English's Multiverse shenanigans."



PVVVVM-SHING!!!
A boarding party transported onto the bridge, surrounding Adria entirely, with Zats and Stun Rifles pointed straight at her face.
"...Well," Adria swore, "Fuck me."
"Sorry," one Roxy Lalonde smirks, finger flexing over her Zat's trigger button. "But you're not my type."



Meanwhile, down in the core of the Ori vessel's computer banks, a count down timer began to tick backwards...



A Jaffa steps forwards, carrying in his arms a glass jar within which a single symbiote floated. It was different from other symbiotes of its like, sitting idle and not writhing about. One might even think it were dead, if not for the subtle effect of its gills moving as it breathed.
Anubis reaches into the jar with his left hand, and removes the Symbiote, causing it to squirm and writhe, and then he kneels down to the creature in the cage. Anubis uses his right hand to pry open the creature's mouth, and then lifts the Symbiote up to its slimy tongue.
Then, he lets go, and the Symbiote surges into the creature's mouth.
A few moments later, the creature's eyes SNAP OPEN and the crimson orbs FLASH, but otherwise... the creature remains docile.



Teal'c whistles sharply, and the creature that had slain so many Jaffa turns around, mouth exposed to the Staff Blast that hits it square in the back of its skull, blowing the entire thing out from the back.



Okurii grimaces. "So what are we dealing with, exactly?"
"A troll in a pitch black suit of armor with an obvious life support element to it, wielding an energy blaster in the left wrist, and a crimson colored plasma torch sword as his primary weapon in his right hand," Joey continues the report. "Honestly, if it weren't for the fact the bastard signed his name, I'd swear Anubis and English were taunting us with a villain from an Earth movie."
"He signed his name? Really?" Okurii asks, incredulous. "Who is this bastard anyways?"
"Someone we thought was dead. Tagora Gorjek," Joey answers.
"The guy torturing Cirava who Rose cooked alive with Scratch Blood?" Okurii asks.



A glass vial shatters on the floor, spreading Green Fire everywhere.



"Yup," Joey nods. "He carved 'Gor-Gor' into a wall."
"Of COURSE it'd be that bastard," Okurii grimaces. "Why couldn't he just die?"
"Karma?" Joey shrugs. "Either that, or fate has me slotted in to be his destined lightsaber opponent."



Tagora, in his space capable Cull Warrior suit, shrieks as he's electrocuted, and then sliced in half by Joey's laser cutter Sword.



“So. Let me get this straight. An alternate version of Tagora Gorjek and a girl named Ardata Carmia came tumbling through the mirror on...?”
“PC0-09Z,” Okurii reminds Joey.
“That place. Right."



“Well, now this IS a surprise! An Alternian Joey Claire.” Tagora stands up from his chair, offering you his hand. “Tagora Gorjek, but you can call me Gor-gor.”
“No offense, Tagora,” Joey says, eyeing his hand, “but the last time I saw the you of this universe, we were fighting ontop of a spaceship with lasser cutter swords and you were trying to kill me. I had to cut you in half.”
“...That hardly sounds like me,” He blinks, looking genuinely confused as he withdraws his hand for a moment, placing it on his chin.



"BEGIN ACCELERATED CLONING OF THE FIRST BATCH OF PRODUCTION RUN KULL WARRIORS."
"But... My Lord!" The Scientist began. "We've yet to find a way to make them survive the process. They just die before we can even remove them from the tanks to implant them with the Blank Slate Symbiotes."
"WE WILL BE USING THE LAST RESORT TECHNOLOGY I SPOKE OF LAST TIME," Anubis says, then snarls. "THE FLAWS IN THE ARMOR REGARDING THE WEAKNESSES IN THIS TECHNIQUE WILL BE IGNORED FOR THE TIME BEING. AFTER ALL, WHO WOULD EXPECT MY INVINCIBLE WARRIORS TO BE UNDEAD FROM THE START?"



"It was never alive to begin with," Selmak deduced after looking at the readings. "It was brought to life after being cloned to full size already dead. These readings are similar to a Sarcophagus, except... different."



Jonas Quinn and Bill Lee emerge from a set of flooded ruins with a large, square device in hand, only to find a lot of guns pointed their way.
"So.... Drug Cartel Lords or Revolutionaries seeking a quick buck?"
"I don't know, Bill, why don't you ask them?"



"Who do you serve?" Teal'c asks of the Kull Warrior- whose face is pale as a ghost and slimy as a frog.
The Goa'uld symbiote within dully stares out through its foggy eyes, before hissing out a raspy, "I. Serve. Anubis! Haaaaa!"
Jacob grins. "You just gave us a star map we can reverse engineer to get a Gate Address from. We have your home Planet!"



"The Tok'ra call it Tartarus," Major Carter leads the briefing. "It was a seemingly unoccupied planet on the edge of Goa'uld controlled space."
"The Tok'ra are currently trying to figure out what the defenses are," Jacob chimes in. "We think that Anubis is likely using forceshields around his Stargate like Joey observed on his ship, likely only allowing stargate access for Kull Warriors who can pass through the fields without harm."



Anubis watches a recording of Joey, Baizli and Karren fighting their way through a bunch of his Jaffa to make their way to the Trio of Stargates onboard his ship.



"So, we suit someone up in one of the Kull Warrior suits and go through the Gate," O'neill begins, when Hammond emerges from his office.
"I'm afraid I have bad news," Hammond announces. "The Honduran government just recieved a ransom notice for Jonas Quinn and Bill Lee. They're being held in Nicaragua, somewhere, but as of this moment we don't know where exactly they are."
Carter looks to O'neill, and he grimaces.


 

EARTH DATE: JULY 23RD, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 01/23/0004.

Your name is Jack O'neill, and you knock on the door to Hammond's Office.

"Enter," Hammond says.

"You wanted to see me, Sir?" You ask, taking a seat.

"We've gotten solid confirmation of where Doctor Lee and Jonas Quinn are being held," Hammond says. "Honduras' long standing policy has been to never negotiate with terrorists, and the US has to respect that, however... The US and Honduras have an agreement in place for such situations. A disgraced operative who, officially, is operating on his own without oversight."

"Unofficially he's the go-to guy for fetching people who get caught up in schemes like this," you surmise from Hammond's words.

"He's willing to take on the mission," Hammond pauses, "however, after hearing your name, he insisted that you, and only you, join him on it."

"Well, I wasn't going to back down from a challenge," you say, frowning. "So... who is it?"

"A CIA operative, one Agent Burke," Hammond quotes.

Burke?? It can't be...

"Burke?" You ask.

"You know him?" Hammond asks.

"Maybe," you say. "I mean. There can't be that few Agent Burke's out there in the world. I mean, I just heard the FBI got a Peter Burke on their White Collar devision up in New York."

"Anything I should know if it IS the Agent Burke you're thinking of?" Hammond asks.

"We're stuck with him regardless, right?" You ask. Hammond nods. "Nothing you should know about then."

"I see. The President has green lit the Op, then. There's a C-130 waiting for you at Peterson. It leaves for Honduras in two hours."

"Yes, Sir," you say, getting up from your chair.

"And Jack?"

"Yeah?" You ask.

"Bring them home," Hammond orders, and you nod.

"That's the plan, General."


 

o<--STARGATE SG-1-->o


 

Your name is Samantha Carter, and while Colonel O'neill has gone off to rescue Jonas and Doctor Lee, you're left to lead the mission against Anubis' forces.

Your dad, JACOB CARTER, leads the briefing. "We've confirmed that Anubis has a base on Tartarus. There's an extensive sensor array to prevent anyone from getting close to the planet without being notice. And like on Anubis' ship, the Stargate there has a Force field around it."

"Even if we can beat the force field, the Stargate's likely to be heavily guarded," you say.

"Therefore, we must gain access to the planet by somehow shutting down the sensor array," Teal'c summarizes the challenge.

"To Take a page from Colonel O'neills playbook," Selmak ventures a suggestion, "either I or Jolinar could equip a Kull Warrior Suit, and walk through the forcefield, infiltrating the base. From there we abandon the armor, using a mild radioactive isotope we've developed to hide from life signs detectors, and shut down the sensor array. A cargo ship containing everyone else can fly in at that point undetected."

"But what of the physical cost?" Bra'tac asks. "The Kull Warriors are bred dead, revived only to fight and die. The process of stepping through such a forcefield may severely damage the wearer of the Suit."

Damn it.
"Bra'tac's right," you say. "We have no way of knowing what the physical cost may be if we do this."

"It's a risk we're going to have to take," Dad says. "I'm confident whatever damage can be done to me can be undone by Selmak."

That's still too much of a--!

Jolinar nudges you, and you let her speak. "I'm confident I could heal Sam up just the same. What I and Sam are worried about are your respective ages. I'd hate for you both to take this risk, then come out the other side a year from now with failing organs because of it."

"So are you saying you want to take the risk instead?" Dad asks, a bit incredulous sounding.

"Yes," you say without any hesitation at all.

"I think-" Bra'tac voices, "the only concern I have over which of the two of you goes is who more closely resembles the Kull Warrior in physical build. If the warriors are bred to be identical in physical appearance, a deviance in that would be noted."

"Agreed," Hammond says. "Before anyone suits up in one of those outfits, I want to make sure we're closely matching the Kull Warrior we captured to minimize suspicion."

"That's fine," Jolinar says, despite your want to protest.


 

You are once again Jonas Quinn, and once again, you're dragged out of the relative comfort of your sun isolated PRISON HUT and shoved into a chair in a much less solar-ray-isolated tent infront of a table and the man leading this camp whose name you STILL HAVEN'T PICKED UP despite the days of literal torture he's put you through.

Everyone just calls him "BOSS" including himself. You doubt that's actually his real name, but you're using it as a handy identifier regardless.

"So," BOSS says. "Are you ready to talk now, Mister Quinn?"

"I've told you the truth like ten times already," you honestly answer. Well, semi-honestly answer. You've fudged a few details here and there just to throw him off, but the general gist of it is correct.

"Yes, you've told me it's a powerful Artifact, but..." He then pulls a blank cloth off of an obect on the desk and--

"You turned it on," you stare at the cube artifact you retrieved from the ruins. Its core is GLOWING with a soft, yet terrifying white light.

"Of course we turned it on!" BOSS says. "And me and my men all feel the stronger for it!"

"You really shouldn't have done that," you say. "The technology derived from that is known for nasty side effects, and we don't know what the original will do to people with prolonged exposure."

"So... tell us what it is, Mister Quinn," BOSS Sneers at you.

"...Exactly? Not sure, like I said five times already, we came here to find it and study it to use against the people who are abusing its technology," you look at the device for a moment, and shudder at it. "But we think it's the basis of the fountain of youth myth. The tech based on it can bring the dead back to life, but not without major consequences due to long term exposure."

"Consequences such as...?" BOSS leans down to look you in the eyes. Are they... slightly glazed over??

"Let me put it in the simplest terms imaginable," you say, looking him straight in the eyes with as much determination as you can muster. "Cliched Villain Behavior. Like. It'll turn you into the most cliched, evil version of yourself that you can be. Penchant for evil laughter, general insanity, the whole nine yards."

BOSS takes that in stride, and then rears back his head, laughing...

"Yeah, just like that," you sigh.

Damn it.

"Boss!" A man steps forwards. "Maybe he's right. We should turn it off."

Boss stops laughing, levels the man with a fierce gaze, and then snaps up his shot gun and-

BLAM!!!

Your ears are ringing even as you're dragged back into your and Bill's little cage. They didn't even give you time to wash the blood splatter off.

"What happened?" Bill asks.

"They turned it on," you answer grimly.

"Oh," he laments.

You're going to need to put that escape plan you've been brewing into motion sooner rather than later.


 

"Well, well, well, well well well well!! If it isn't Colonel Jack O'neill!!"

"I think you forgot a 'well' somewhere, Burke." Your name is indeed JACK O'NEILL, and you look up from your drink as the man who spoke that over drawn water bucket of a sentence.

"You don't look happy to see me," Burke begins. "You know I would've given anything to see your face when you heard my name."

You take off your sunglasses, glaring at him. "Burke, I've got Forty-eight hours to find my friends before they're killed for failure to comply with the ransom demands. Just tell me what you know."

"You know, when Doctor Elizabeth Weir- nice woman, by the way, have you two met?- contacted me on the behest of the US Air Force AND Honduras," Burke smirks, sitting down across the table from you, "I thought my day would be as boring as these things usually go. Go here, fetch this political land mine, bring him home safe and sound, I was NOT expecting your name to come up, Jack!"

"Weir? Can't say it rings a bell," you roll your eyes. "At any rate, Burke. Do you know where my people are or not?"

"Your people?" Burke laughs. "Alright, fine. Fine. All Business. I can dig." He motions around the bar you're at. "This is the last place Doctor Lee and Jonas Quinn were seen before they hired a guide named Rogelio Duran to take them into the jungle. Short time after that, they're snatched by, ah, anti-Hondurian Extremists. You know how it goes."

Anti-Honduran, you want to correct, but whatever.

"And you arranged to meet here, because...?" You ask.

"This particular splinter group does business around here. They've got their ears to the ground and what not. Last year they kidnapped some bigshot engineer working on the Cojon river dam. Big American contract, insurance pays off, and they fund their war with the government with the ransom. I didn't get hired then, by the way. Didn't find out about it 'til after. CIA was a little miffed about it."

"This engineer live?" You ask.

"Yeah, he did, sometimes they don't." Burke sighs. "Anyways. That's why I'm here this time. We each get what we want from this little expedition."

"Okay, so what weapons do they got?" You ask.

"Okay, so, here's a colorful image," Burke begins to 'paint the picture' as he always put it. "Hondruas and Nicaragua are in the middle of their territorial dispuite, and I know what you're thinking. 'When are they NOT?' Anyways, because of this, anyone in the 'I hate Honduras' fanclub can seek shelter behind Nicaragua's borders and buy guns. What kind of guns? AKs for days. 'Parently Nic' gets their stuff rum Russia now, but in the eighties they inherited a lot of stuff from Cuba." He laughs. "How'd'ya like that? They let us fight Cuba from their shores, we get our asses kicked into high orbit, and Cuba gives them the guns. Fun fact: We could get shot at today by an AK-47 that was used in the Bay of Pigs!!"

And then he laughs, in that breathy, maniac way that comes from losing all sense of connection with the person you used to be.

"You've been down here too long, Burke," you say.

"Hah! You really think so?" He levels a gaze at you. "You know why I got this crappy ass posting in this lovely, tropical, bug ridden part of the world? Go on, ask, I just know you're begging to know."

"No, we're not going to play the blame game today, Burke," you say. "I get it, you blame me."

Burke stares at you for a moment, then gives you a leveled, "Yeah, sure I do. You coulda stood up for me. HIlary left me. Everyone assumes the Friendly Fire incident wasn't actually friendly fire, for all the wrooooong reasons, buddy!" And then he LAUGHS. "Hell No I don't Blame YOU!"

"...What?" You ask.

"I know you didn't see what happened to Woods. I know you told them what you knew! I know you, Jack!" He looks you in the eyes, and gives you a rarely honest tone of voice. "I know you! You're not the kind of guy to lie if you're not sure about something! You stick to the FACTS, JACK!" he pokes a finger at your heart. "The only person I blame in all of this is-" He stops short, and then abruptly gets up from his table. "Come on. Let's just get moving. I know where these rebels operate, and how to get over the border. You can call the OP shots if you want, but this is MY TURF, Jack, and You Need Me to be Tour Guide Number What-The-Fuck-Does-It-Matter! So pack your bags, Shirley! Clock's ticking!"

And then he saunters away, leaving you to sigh tiredly, finish your drink, and follow him.

Damn it all.


 

Your name is Jacob Carter, and as Siler finishes tucking you into the Kull Warrior Armor, you stare up at the Stargate as it dials out.

"How's that, sir?" Siler asks.

"Good," you answer. "Just like my football days."

"They had helmets back in this days?" Siler asks, and you fix him with a gaze, even as Selmak laughs in your head.

"Very funny."

"I thought so, Sir," Siler says, moving to collect the Kull Warrior helmet pieces from the cart.

Some days, you wonder how much of a bad influence O'neill is on the rest of the SGC, and how much of it is just that kind of sense of humor manifesting in response to all the crazy situations that happen here on a weekly basis.

"Jacob, are you ready?" George asks.

"Suit's lighter than I thought it'd be, so yeah," you nod, offering your hand to him.

"Good luck," George says, shaking it.

"Thanks, George," you say, then tap at your head as the Gate connects.

The helmet goes over your face as the KAWOOOSH happens.

From what little you've heard from Alternia, apparently even these suits can't protect against the unstable vortex of a Stargate. If they did, you'd be a lot more terrified.

And with everything pressurized and working, you head through the eventhorizon, hand first to push through the forcefield.

It doesn't even tickle as you step through the orange shield on the other side.

....The Gate is only guarded by Two Kull Warriors, which... is both more and less than you were expecting.

They don't react as you walk past them into the building.

[Now to find a place to sneak away quietly and--]

"You! You're late. Come with me." There's a Goa'uld Scientist motioning for you to follow him.

You do so.

'This might be harder than we thought,' you think-say. 'Hopefully Sam and the others are in position by now.'

[Agreed,] Semlak says.

The Scientist leads you to a room, and you sit down in a chair.

As he begins work on a console, he's interrupted by a holographic call from elsewhere.

"...What now," The Goa'uld remarks, then summons up the screen.

"Tooth or whatever the hell your name is," says the image of an Alternian Girl in Jaffa Armor. "Lord Anubis requests your presence in the Teleconference Room Immediately."

"But I-"

"NOW, SLOTH!" The Girl stresses. "This is a matter of Grave Importance!"

"Fine," The Goa'uld Scientist sighs as the communication cuts short. "Neither of those were even CLOSE to being my name."

And then he leaves.

[Well, that was a lucky break,] Selmak remarks.

'Agreed,' you nod in agreement, and get out of the chair.

Now, you'll just find an access terminal, shut down the security systems, and let Bra'tac fly in a Cargo Ship. Easy as pie.

[I am not sure 'pie' is what this will be, Jacob,] Selmak observes. [Maybe more of a sour tart cake, perhaps?]

'Yeah yeah,' you roll your eyes and pry off the suit's helmet. 'Whatever you say, bud.'


 

Your name is Davis Strider, Major in the US AIFORCE, and accompanied by your Boyfriend from another Galaxy, Karkat Vantas,  ResidentMajor Pain-In-The-Ass for the Alternian Military's timeline division (Yet to be Established).

Boy does that sentence sound good to put together inside your head.

While everyone else is out and about doing this and that and all kinds of other exciting things... you two have the unenviable task of completing part of a Time Loop nobody imposed on you but Karkat himself.

"So how long are we waiting again?" You ask.

"Just give it a minute," Karkat says, sipping at his soda. "She'll be here soon."

The two of you are on a mission with several layers to it. From the outside perspective of these fine Cafe Goers sitting around you- you're just two lawyers chilling out at lunch. To anyone who was in the know of the SGC, your position here in DC would be rather suspicious, but excusable under reasons of "On a Fucking Date while Diplomacy Elsewhere is on Hold."

As for anyone else, well...

What the hell do they care? They're not your problem. And hell, if it gets the both of you out of an Interview with BREGMAN, you'll take it.

Still, DC is a long way away from Colorado Springs. "You could have gone to the Zoo instead," someone would inevitably say! And then someone else would argue, "Hey there isn't a Zoo in Colo'Springs!" Except, there totally is and anyone who says otherwise is a lying ass liar who lies.

But, you see, there in lies the problem.

Your target for today isn't anywhere near Colorado Springs.

"Ah, there she is," Karkat says, eyeing a taxi that pulls up along side the street. Emerging from it is a woman in a business suit and with her dark brown hair that looks like its been put through a strains of prepping for a new and shiny dye job she probably doesn't need. It's all frizzy and the like.

She enters the Cafe's interior, and gets in line. She, naturally, being one Doctor Elizabeth Weir, apparently important of enough importance to the apparently very important timeline loop that you're completing here to be out here at some unimportant Cafe before setting sail for a few months on some important diplomatic mission.

As she collects her drink, and heads to a table to work on some notes, you and Karkat stand up to prepare to 'walk past' her table. You subtly prepare your briefcases full of 'legal documents' to burst open at the wrong moment by pretending to 'secure' them.

"So, I was saying," Karkat raises his voice as you start walking. "The new Ace Attorney Game is really off the mark for how legal systems should work at all. I swear, you'd think Tyzias was writing it back when she was a tyke, with how convoluted some of it is."

"Uh huh," you nod along in bullshitting agreement. "But seriously, did you see that Edgy Guy? So edgy, I tell you. He'll be the one giving people paper cuts instead of receiving them."

And then as you pass by Doctor Weir, your briefcase pops open and dumps all of its contents onto her table.

"OH SNAP!" you yell out in a close approximation of genuine dismay. "Sorry! Shit! Sorry! The damn locks on this thing never seem to stick right!!"

"Here, let me help you with that," Weir says, ever the helpful chick apparently, genuinely handing you over your own documents and hopefully none of hers.

"No! Sorry, It's fine," you say, making sure that she does indeed hand you one of her documents in exchange for the duplicate Karkat wanted her to have instead.

It's not much, literally just the same exact set of pages in the folder you're taking, with one extra goodie resting inside that shouldn't be there.

A Floppy Disk containing a copy of the blackmail material on Senator Robert Kinsey, and a single sticky note message reading "Hold In Case Of Emergency or Exploitation."

"Come on, man!" Karkat laments. "Just replace the lock on that thing already!"

"You know that I'd have to get it past inspection again!!" you complain, finishing up getting everything secured, and then actually locking your briefcase. "Sorry for the mess, Ma'am."

"It's fine," Weir waves it off.

Soon enough, you and Karkat have left, and you can only look to your boyfriend and ask, "So... think that'll work?"

"It's certainly going to make her hesitate, that's for sure," Karkat answers.


 

Your name is Jolinar of Malkshur, and you're trying to help keep Sam from boiling over in rage...

It's hard, though. It's SO HARD considering that the Goa'uld Queen before you is basically willingly doing to her spawn, for Anubis, what Egeria was doing out of spite from her situation.

"How," Teal'c asks, staring at the tank before you. "How did Anubis learn of Egeria's situation?"

"The Tok'ra have been keeping it quiet," Jacob says. "Malek thought it would enrage others to learn of what happened. Egeria agreed, but she didn't want it getting out because of this exact sort of thing. There's no way Anubis should know about this."

"We've kept this out of the SGC's databases too..." Sam frowns. "I don't know this got out... but it doesn't matter." She withdraws a pack of C-4 and primes its wireless detonator. "We're blowing this up the moment we get clear."

And with that, she slaps said pack of C-4 on the underside of the table.

You make sure to add in a second block a moment later, just to be on the safe side.

"Now let's go find the computer terminals," Jacob says. "See how many of these suckers Anubis has made."


 

You're once again Jack O'neill, and you've found the tour guide Jonas hired. Alive, but shot through the back. Somehow. He's been lying here for days.

It's not comforting to hear the boy- well, adult in his early twenties really, but he looks like a boy- tell you calmly that it's not the first time he's been shot, and that he's more concerned about you rescuing Jonas and Doctor Lee because they owe him lots of money.

...Burke leaves him a pack of gum for his troubles, and you continue on your way with promises of an air rescue inbound.

He keeps muttering here and there about something or other that doesn't make sense until he says, "Should be a couple of clicks away now. But I gotta ask, how can you trust me, Jack?"

"Easy answer, I don't," you say.

"You think I asked you down here so I could shoot you too, or something?" Burke asks.

"Why would I think that?" You ask. "You've had plenty of opportunity before now to try it, and you haven't."

"Oh such cruel fate! What's worse, to be branded a traitor or to be branded an incompetent fool!"

"Oh, for crying out loud, Burke!" You groan. "What the hell is your problem??"

"I'm mad that you're perfectly willing to go into a hot situation with ME watching your back and you're not being more vocal about it!" He protests, turning around to face you. "I'm MAD you don't seem to want to know the truth! I mean, come on- do you really NOT want to know!?"

"Alright, fine," you say. "What happened out there, Burke? What really happened? Why'd you shoot Woods?"

"It wasn't my fault." Burke says. "I didn't choose. I just reacted. The whole thing stunk so bad and-" He shakes his head. "What happened was... Woods was ghosting us. He sold us out. He was an ex-friend turned soldier of fortune.I caught him sending out a rogue transmission. He was giving our position away!! I caught him and he turned his weapon on me and I just REACTED!"

Wha....

"Why didn't you come forwards with this?" you ask.

"C'mon, Jack! You remember how close we were! The wives and the beers and the barbecues and I couldn't do that to Cindy! It comes out Woods was a traitor she doesn't see any of the pension, since he was a month away from retirement. But he wasn't going to retire. I heard him setting himself up as a mercenary for that warlord! He made his choice and now he's gone and that's all that matters."

And with that, Burke resumes walking.

You've got a lot to think about.

And all of that... all of that happened a few months before Charlie... and then the Stargate...

Damn it all.

And then you hear the distant gun fire.

"Aw man, they started the party without us!" Burke cries out- sounding chipper as if he hadn't JUST exposed a dark secret.

Within a few minutes, you come stumbling across a cowering Lee behind a tree- "Jonas broke us out and lead them off that way!!" he points off in a wild direction.

You follow that pointed finger and RUN.

You find a group of armed men pointing their guns at Jonas, armed only with a rock.

It's a sharp and pointy rock, but it's not going to do him much good.

Seeing as Jonas is on the ground and the men with guns are all standing...

You aim high and let loose a barrage of bullets.

The men fall, and Jonas looks up at you with a bit of confusion, awe, and also relief. "Colonel O'neill?" He asks.

"Yeah," you nod.

"LOOKOUT!" his eyes widen suddenly and his warning has you ducking to avoid a shotgun blast.

You turn around and fire off shots into... a guy who's already been shot and also tanks the hits like a pro. You even land a head shot, but the man just growls and takes aim at you again.

"What the--?"

You don't get to finish the thought because there's a "FIRE IN THE HOLE!" A PUNT of a grenade launcher, and then a BOOM as the man with the shotgun goes up in dirt and flames.

Burke!!

"HAHA!" Burke laughs. "The hell was that!? He tanked a shot to the head!!"

You turn to look at Jonas. "What he said," you say.

"Telchak's device can reanimate the dead," Jonas answers.

You look down at the men you shot earlier. "Respawn time?" You ask.

"I dunno, about half an hour?" Jonas says, looking at the rock he was holding and tossing it aside as useless now.

You look to Burke and ask, "How many more Grenades you got?"


 

Your name is Teal'c, and--

"HAIL ANUBIS! HAIL ANUBIS!" Thousands upon thousands of Kull Warriors kneel before the holographic, towering form of Anubis.

"Well, that's not terrifying in the least," Jacob Carter remarks in what you're positive is a majorly sarcastic tone of voice. "A Legion of heavily suited warriors all bowing infront of a giant visage of their leader? Someone's been inspired by a War Crime documentary or three."

"Either that," you say, "or he has been watching Star Wars."

"Come on, what's more likely," Carter asks, "that Anubis has watched Earth's history at some point, including Star Wars, or that the ideology's just repeating?"

Your conversation is brought to an abrupt end as a Goa'uld Scientist enters the room behind the balcony you three are standing on. "What- Who are you!?" He cries out.

He makes the mistake of reaching for an alert device instead of raising his metal-ribbon clad hand.

PCH-ZYU!! PCH-ZYU!!

You snap up your ZAT and down he goes.

Of course, the alarms go off anyways.

"Well, I guess it's time to get out of here," Jacob says. "Bra'tac!" He radios, "Our cover's blown, we need a pickup!"

"On my way," Bra'tac replies.

Silently, without a word, Carter reaches for the C-4 detonator and gives it a squeeze.

The building shakes and trembles, and then suddenly does so again a second later- much more than it should have.

"Ah-" Bra'tac's voice opens over the radio a moment later, sounding concerned. "I believe our situation just got more complicated."

"How so?" You ask as the three of you move to escape back the way you came.

"A giant, green colored, ring shaped ship just emerged from the upper atmosphere and began opening fire upon the base," Bra'tac reports.

"English," Jolinar swears. "Of course he'd show up now."

The building shakes again- another shot from above it seems.

You growl out, "Indeed. The timing is most unfortunate."


 

"Aaand, there," your name is Jonas Quinn, and you've got the fancy alien device shut off and no longer glowing. Glowing generally means its working, so not glowing means its not. Right? Right. "Done."

Just to be safe, you stuff it into a radiation proof bag that O'neill had the foresight to bring with him.

"So... Zombies?" This Burke Guy asks, "Is that a regular thing or classified intel...?"

"Let's just say that's a new one on me," Colonel O'neill replies.

"At any rate," you say, "it shouldn't happen again. It's off now."

"Good," O'neill says. Then, he looks to Burke, "I'm going to put in a good word for you with the President, Burke. See if he can't get you reassigned."

"...Since when did you have the President of the United States on speed dial, Jack?" Burke asks.

"If you get security clearance, I'll tell you about it some time," O'neill answers.

And now, you wait for your air-lift to get here...

You wonder how Teal'c and the others are doing?


 

"Someone just opened the exterior engine hatch!" Bra'tac exclaims as a console beeps rapidly.

"In Mid-Flight?!" Carter asks- and then a door opens behind her. She turns around and a Kull Warrior sends her flying to the floor with a side sweeping punch.

Teal'c goes to take down the Warrior with a tackle but is forced to dodge as it turns and fires laser bolts from its arm canon.

"HEY!" Jacob yells, having gotten behind the warrior and into the ring room. "OVER HERE YOU BIG MATT BLACK FLAT TIRE FINISH OF A PAINT JOB!!!"

The Kull Warrior- not understanding the Taunt, turns regardless, and starts to storm into the Ring Room.

Bra'tac, without having to even get up from his chair, just punches in the buttons to activate the Ring Platform.

VRRRM! VRRRM! VRRRM! VRRRM! VRRRM! VRRRM! VRRRM! VRRRM!

VARROOOOOSH!!!

And then, the rings beneath the Cargo Ship activate, dumping themselves and the Kull Warrior out into the open atmosphere of the planet below.

Forwards momentum, naturally, keeps the Cargo Ship going forwards.The Rings and the Kull Warrior, do not.

"Are you okay?" Bra'tac asks, pulling Teal'c up from the floor.

"Only my Pride is wounded. Two old men did what I could not," Teal'c answers.

"Hey, Kiddo," Jacob kneels down to check on Carter. "You okay?"

"...Been better... room's swirling, though," Carter answers.

And so a few minutes later, the Cargo Ship has escaped the planet's orbit and is rocketing away past the moons.

Before they enter Hyperspace, they take a moment and observe as the Green painted ORI VESSEL bombards Anubis' factory with laser beam after laser beam.

"Somehow," Selmak muses, "I get the feeling that even if this works in our favor for the moment, it is going to cause us problems in the long term."

"Indeed," Teal'c agrees.


 

Elsewhere in the Galaxy, Anubis ROARS as he recieves word that his largest Kull Warrior Production Facility was utterly destroyed by English's ship attacking it.

How they managed to get into attack range without the system's proximity sensors detecting it, however, would remain a mystery.

Damn security leaks. It was inevitable one would happen to him eventually, considering how lucky of a break it was that he'd learned of the technique by which symbiotes could be made blank slates thanks to one of his agents infiltrating that world that had been creating some wonder drug from ground up Symbitoes while he was searching for the Eye of Ra.

The only reason Anubis had avoided destroying that planet entirely was soon there-after he'd been set upon by the System Lords and things had gone down hill from there, with Abydos and...

Well.

That was just how the dice were rolled. Such as English hedging his bets and bringing so much of his military might through to Milky Way instead of heeding Anubis' warning not to.

Anubis was sure THAT would come back around to bite the Cherubim in the ass eventually, but whether that eventually was sooner or later remained to be seen.


 

Your name is Jack O'neill, and you smile in relief as you see Carter sitting in her lab, scrolling the mouse wheel occasionally with her left hand and only her left hand. You'd be worried if she was trying to write a mile a minute or something, but it looks like she's following Janet's Orders and keeping her right arm in a sling.

Judging from the text on the screen, she's reading something. Page formatting looks like it's a snapshot from some Alternian Website, translated to english.

"Hey," You knock on the edge of the door. "I hear you had a rough day."

"Colonel," She pauses her scrolling to turn in her chair and smiles. "Welcome back. How's Jonas?"

"Janet's got a couple of nurses slathering aloe over the sunburns he and Lee got out in the jungle," you reply. "Other than that, he's good. How are you?"

"Sore head, sore shoulder," Carter admits. "Sticking to 'light reading' for now."

"Anything good?" You ask.

"Callie's fictionalization of the team's mission reports, actually," Carter confesses.

"So you come back from a harrowing mission through the Stargate just to read about more harrowing missions through the Stargate?" You ask.

"...It's actually the mission report for Giza," she says. "Except, not a mission report, since it's a fictionalization of it. I don't think they actually ever wrote a mission report on it."

"Giza?" You ask. "As in- back in time, three hundred or whatever BC?"

"Three thousand BC, but yeah," Carter nods. "It's really interesting, actually. Without an actual mission report to compare to, I'm having a hard time picking out what's her exaggerating details and what actually happened. Especially when it comes to our Alternate Timeline selves, it's hard to tell what's real, and what's Callie making stuff up."

"Try me," you say.

"Alright..." Carter she smiles, "so, she wrote that 'Darien Gautier' and 'Louise Valiere' stared 'longingly into eachothers eyes in the back seat of the Time Machine, and even as the broken power circuits sparked from the overhead compartment, they moved closer and closer to the point they finally brought their lips together.'"

"...What?" You ask.

"This is just after they'd survived being shot at by Ra's Jaffa," Carter explains.

"Ah," you say. "Right."

"'"But wait," Darien exclaims suddenly as they break apart,'" Carter continues to read. "'"I Thought you liked Samuel!"

"'"Sorry, I panicked and lied," Lousie answered.'" She then scoffs. "Seriously. I can't see any versions of us saying anything like that."

"Yeah, that seems a bit out of character," you say.

"Not only that, but earlier on near the beginning of the alternate time line," Carter laughs, "Callie had her version of me spouting the line 'Just because my reproductive organs are on the inside instead of the outside doesn't mean you're better than me!' And I- God. That sounds so horrible. At least Callie lamp shaded it with how ridiculous it sounded in the next line."

"I dunno," you say. "Different circumstances, I could see you saying that to some upity superior officer with a few complexes shoved up his ass."

"Let's hope I never have to say that ever again except when quoting this part of the story," Carter answers, rolling her eyes at your remark.

"Uh-huh." You grab a chair from around the desk and bring it over to sit down on. "Let me see this. What Else has little miss Ohphee written about our alternate timeline selves under the guise of 'it's just fiction'?"

Chapter Text

> [S] Act 5 Act 2

Our perspective floats among the alien stars of an alien galaxy for all of [0:08] seconds...

And then the curtains part, and our perspective view is pulled into Hyperspace.

[0:18]

The hyperspace tunnel swirls around vividly in circles, before the hijacked Ori Ship passes into our observable range. We pull up from behind, along the side, and then our view pans in through the front window, dead center on the front bow, and into the bridge within.

Sitting crossleged on the Captain's chair is Joey Claire, eyes closed as she meditates away. Floating infront of her face is the black colored bracelet she'd created as a focus tool, and surrounding her everywhere on the bridge are Arai Beetles.

Other beetles remain scattered through the ship here and there.

This is what they saw.

[0:57]

In a private corner of a mess hall, Xefros and Roxy sat, guitars in arm. Xefros strums along to the melody you're now hearing. And as he finishes the introductory part-

[1:11]

-Roxy starts strumming along a smaller part as Xefros continues on with the main melody, its beats traveling through the ship's internal communications speakers thanks to some CLEVER HACKING and a void-summoned adapter port.

[1:22]

Elsewhere in the room, Daraya and Tyzias sat and poured over books and books of legal concepts, chatting here and there about this and that.

[1:30]

Meanwhile, down in a rec-room, Polypa and Mierfa idly switch turns throwing and catching punches, but otherwise remain silent, letting their fists do most of the talking.

[1:38]

In the engine room, Mallek stares out a window at the massive glowing core of energy powering the entire ship.

[1:47]

In what had been Adria's grand bedroom, now commandeered, the cloned versions of Jack O'neill and Sam Carter sat next to each other on the bed, while looking over some IMPORTANT DOCUMENTATION that Adria had rightfully kept off of the ships computer for fears of DIGITAL HACKING.

[1:58]

Down in the holding cells, Adira sat in a similar meditative pose to Joey's, except more kneeling and directly on the floor.

She had her eyes wide open, though, and were firmly fixed on the former Ascended woman across the force shield from her- Ganos Lal, who sat casually, yet confidently, on a chair brought down from the crew quarters.

[2:10]

Our view drifts down to the computer lab, showing a count down timer still counting down.

[2:15]

And then it pulls back upwards, into the bridge, as Joey Claire opens her eyes- a stable purple aura flickering around them before fading away as she finished her meditation session for the day.

The Bracelet floating in front of her drifted casually down onto her right wrist, and she got up from the chair to look out the window directly.

Hyperspace continued to swirl in front of her, even as a very different count down ticked down on a nearby screen. This one mere seconds rather than the hours remaining on the other.

[2:40]

And then it reached zero, and the Ori vessel dropped out of hyperspace over their target planet.

It was a small planet, covered in thick grey-black clouds, and of the surface that could be seen below, black hued oceans and blue colored forests on the landscape.

Joey took a steeling breath, then reached for the radio to inform the crew that they had arrived at their destination, even as Xefros and Roxy strummed down to the end of the song.


 

EARTH DATE: JULY 24TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 01/24/0004.

"Rhetorically, I ask, how many days of Hyperspace travel was that again?" Jimmy O'neill asks as he hefts a backpack onto his back, and then steps onto the Ring Platform.

It's a very large Ring Platform. Much larger than the standard issue platforms the Goa'uld and Alternian ships use. It's clearty designed for mass troop movements... either that, or very large people.

"Seventeen days," Your name is Xefros Tritoh, and you answer that question simply enough, helping Joey securing her own bag of supplies onto the MALP you brought with you. "It's a big galaxy and the Supergate was waaaay on the other side of where we needed to be. Plus, the detour we had to make to go around that Patrol of Ships."

"That's not bad time considering it took us about ten days to get to Earth from Revanna," Carter remarks. "And that was with structural problems on the Cargo Ship too."

"It's not bad time," Joey agrees. "I just wish we didn't have to make that detour we did. Stupid patrolling ships."

"Right! So!" Daraya says as she and Tyzias join you on the ring platform. "Is that everyone ready?"

"Looks like," Joey nods, then looks over to Roxy, manning the ring platform controls. "Beam us down, Rox."

"Aye aye, Cap'n!" Roxy grins, and then punches in the buttons.

SKREEEEEEEEE!!!

And yet, despite the size difference, the Rings still make the same sounds.

VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM!!

VAROOOOOOSH!

VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM VRRM!!

SNIKT!

And then you're down on the surface of a very windy and shadey looking planet.

"Somehow," you muse aloud as the wind gusts against your face. Thank you, Goggles, for the eye shielding!! "I get the feeling John would be right at home here."

"Hah, something like that, no doubt," Joey nods, checking her map. "Alright... Looks like we have to head..." She takes out a compass, turns around until she gets a lock on North, and decides on a direction. "This way."

You all look in that direction, and see a very large, towering mountain that seems to have had its top blown off at some point in time.

"Please tell me it's not at the top of the mountain?" O'neill asks.

"You've got the knees for it now, if it is," Carter jokes, starting off in that direction.

"Very funny!" O'neill answers, chasing after her.

And so, the rest of you start heading that way, MALP trailing behind you via remote control.

"So, how much C-4 do you expect we'll have to use to clear away any blocked passages?" Joey asks of Daraya.

"Less than Polypa'd like, probably," Daraya answers. "But more than I'm comfortable with, probably."

"Coming from the girl who blew up Scratch's moon mansion with a cherry bomb, that's frightening," Tyzias remarks.

"Yeah, well, I didn't have to be anywhere near that explosion when it went off," Daraya says. "This is going to be really close- definitely too close for my comfort, at any rate."

"Speaking of," you muse, "was it wise to leave Polypa on the space ship with the giant laser cannon on the front of it?"

"Mierfa'll keep her in line," Joey says. "Besides, they've got the important job of keeping Adria alive and in custody so we can fly that ship out of here."

Ah, yes, that frustrating "Mental link" connecting Adria to the core of her ship. If Adria dies, the ship's core dies and with that, your ride home dies too.

At least she's not needed on the bridge to fly the thing, but still...

You know YOU'D be more comfortable with her rotting in space or drifting into a black hole.


 

About an hour of a hike later- due to having to find a way around a ravine that had opened up to swallow a good chunk of the flatlands you were using as a path- you come across the ruins of an Ancient settlement.

"Architecture's a match," Jolinar remarks through Carter. "Definitely a precursor to early Ancient."

"We'll stop for a break here," Joey decides. "Should be good shelter from the wind."

There's no argument from anyone as you approach the abandoned ruins.

Except, they're not so abandoned.

You all stop on the outskirts of a village built into the ruins. A village built by who, though? Well...

"...Are those Salamanders??" Lantash inquires through O'neill, staring at the tiny, knee high salamanders walking around on two legs, going about their farming business, you'd guess.

"They're definitely salamanders," you say. "Walking salamanders, at that."

One of them waddles up towards your group, looking excited and breathing so rapidly a bubble forms and pops as it opens and closes its mouth. It makes a "Glub" sound each time it does such.

"Oh- GLUB- Look! Look! GLUB! Tall ones!! GLUB GLUB GLUB GLUB!!"

"Correction," Tyzias says, "walking and TALKING salamanders, at that."

"They are kinda cute," Daraya muses, as a few more join the first, glubbing all the way.

"Please! GLUB! You must come speak with the Elder, great heroes- GLUB GLUB GLUB- it's so very important they speak to you! GLUUUUB!" They all say variations on that sentence.

You look to Joey, and she shrugs, "Couldn't hurt. Maybe they can lead us to the Ark?"


 

"WELCOME! GLUB!!" A Salamander who, for some reason, is wearing a very large, very fake Wizard beard, exclaims loudly as the lot of you enter a large set of ruins. "GREAT HEROES OF LEGEND! FINA-GLUBBING-LY!!"

"Hello," Joey takes the lead, kneeling to meet the Salamander 'Elder' on a more even level. "I'm Joey Claire, this is my team. We're here searching for-"

"YES YES!" The Elder glubs excitedly. "GLUB! YOUR PRIZE! YES! THE GREAT TREASURE THE LAST WALKER ENTRUSTED TO US! GLUUUB! WE WILL GIVE IT! YES! BUT FIRST YOU MUST HEEEEELP US! Glub."

Joey looks back at you, and you give her a shrug just like before. "Okay," she turns back to the Elder. "What do you need our help with?"

"YOU...!" The elder glubs about eight times in a row from how extied he surely must be. "MUST DEFEAT!!" More glubbing. Geeze, he's really getting worked up over this. "THE TYPHEUS MINIONS THE VAST FAKERS SENT TO TORMENT OUR WORLD WITH!!!"

"The 'Vast Fakers'?" Tyzias asks.

"Either the Ori or English," you say, crossing your arms in a very 'not impressed' way.

"What are these 'Typheus Minions'?" Joey asks. "And where can we find them?"

"THE MINIONS- GLUB- ARE TERRI-GLUB-BLE! HORRI-GLUB-BLE! AN INVASIVE SPECIES UNLEASHED COUNTLESS GENERATIONS AGO! GLUB! THEY EAT OUR MUSHROOMS AND THE VERY LAND ITSELF!!! GLUB!!" The Elder, then, rather startlingly, says calmly, "Here, let me mark the location on your map. Glub!"


 

Typheus Minions, as it turned out, were giant worm monsters. Their lower bodies were white, and their upper bodies were neon green... and their faces were utterly stupid.

"Derp-city," Tyzias remarks, staring at the swarming horde of giant worms with the stupidest derp face imaginable.

That said, the buggers were chewing through the ground and causing it to colapse into ravines like the one you saw before.

"I'm gonna try something," Joey says, reaching out with her hand. Her eyes glow with the light of the Admin crystal, and the Worms all freeze in place.

And then they all turned their heads slowly towards your group, and Joey gulped.

"C'mon..." She mutters. "C'mon...!"

And then the worms all fall flat on their faces- snoring despite their derpy faces remaining unchanged.

"Phew," Joey exhales in relief. "I made them fall asleep."

"Now what?" you ask. "They won't stay like that forever."

"No... but it'll make them easier to double Zat," Joey says, shaking her head. "And hopefully it won't send them all into an angry rage with one shot."

"Good point," you nod.

And so your team retrieve your Zats, and get to firing.


 

ALAS, while the Salamanders did give you a treasure chest, it was full of silly things like cloaks and clothes and some Ancient children s toys, but no ARK OF TRUTH within.

That said, the Salamanders DID, in return, mark the location of ANOTHER SETTLEMENT that might have what you're looking for.

It was on the edge of the mountain you were looking for, so... yeah. Off you go in that direction.

It's another few hours hike, and the wind refuses to let up. Still, by the time you reach this other village, news of your help seems to have rapidly spread somehow. The Salamanders here are all too willing to let you rest and stay in the village while you all search the mountain for the Ark.

You just hope it doesn't take too long. The constant Glub-glub-glub sounds are starting to get annoying.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: JULY 25TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 01/25/0004.

Your name is Ganos Lal, and it's taken you a while to place it, given thousands and thousands of years of continental drift and atmospheric disruptions, but this place...

Yes, you're fairly certain this place was CELESTIS.

Its utterly been terraformed over.

This is not the Ori's doing, that is for sure. They would never find the Ark's location and decide to utterly transform the planet while leaving the Ark be... Not only that- scans indicated that the TEMPLE the Ori had been building was not only several times larger, but UTTERLY IN RUINS. The Ori... no. They'd never do this to their own place of worship.

This has to be English's doing.

What reason would he have for terraforming the planet, though and LEAVE the Ark in place undisturbed?

...The mere idea of the answer that comes to mind is as terrifying as it is making sense.

It's a test run. Likely, English found several planets in this galaxy and transformed them in some grand experiment. The sheer luck of him finding this place, and transforming it...

Penny's information had better be correct, or else things might have gotten a lot harder than they otherwise would be.


 

Your name is Jolinar of the Alternate Future, and you're all staring at a very ominous DOORWAY in the side of the mountain. The doorway itself isn't ominous in and of itself. The HARSH SNORING SOUND on the other hand...

"Okay, This is what we in the Dimension-hopping community call a 'Really Bad Idea Door,'" you say flatly.

"Who's 'we' in this case?" Joey asks.

"Keiko, Silica, the other you and Cassandra," you explain. "Me, John, Jade, Argo, Rose- I mean, sure, we're technically time travelers but really, we came through a Quantum Mirror first before jumping back in time so I say it counts."

"Right," Joey nods.

"My question is: what exactly does a 'bad idea door' entail, exactly?" Xefros asks.

"Exactly that," you answer. "Crossing the eventhorizon of said doorway leads to a multitude of bad times." You pause, then amend, "I didn't come up with the term by the way. Apparently Keiko heard it from some multi-dimensional entity that took the form of a talking crystal skull."

"Ah," Xefros chimes in. "That's what I thought it was going to be."

"So, we're going in, right?" Jac- Jimmyy asks.

"Of course we're going in," Joey says. "This is the cave Penny's intel says the Ark is in."

"She mention what else is inside, by any chance?" Jimmyy asks.

"Not so much beyond a crude exclamation of 'Oh, Worms!' no," Joey answers. "I'm guessing more of those minion things, though."

"Well, the last ones weren't so bad," Tyzias says. "I think we'll be fine."

And so you all crossed the threshold of the Bad Idea Door.


 

"Soooo...." one Roxy Lalonde approaches you on the bridge. "I got a question, Ganos."

"What kind of question?" You ask.

"...Mmmh, I forgot," Roxy answers with a sigh. "So let's talk 'til I remember it."

"Very well," you say. "How are you doing, forgotten questions aside?"

"Oh, you know, headaches from drinking too much insta-beer on demand and such..." Roxy blinks, then says, "MAYBE my question: what the hell is up with these fancy ass powers? Was that a THING for you Ancients or something?"

"For those close to Ascension, yes," you answer. "However... such abilities were not common, nor were they particularly as... unique as something like your summoning ability."

"So John's windy stuff, for example...?"

"Perfectly in line with what an Ancient could potentially do pre- and post- Ascension," you answer.

"And Jade's powers?"

"That... is more unlikely," you admit. "It's a very strong form of Telekenesis, let alone with the werewolf form added on top of that."

"What about Rose?"

"Even before you count the cat-form turning her into a living, short-range Stargate," you shake your head. "Phasing in and out of reality was something only Merlin managed with technology."

"Mm-hhhm." Roxy nods. "Merlin, huh?" She blinks. "Waaaait. Now I remember my question!"

"Oh?" You ask. "What is it?"

"So, like, you used to be the Ancients Troubleshooter, and all that, right?" Roxy asks. "And you descended to the mortal realm once again to work with-slash-against Merlin, according to what I've heard through the grapevine, yeaaa?"

"I was sent after him to stop him from building a device to stop the Ascended Ori, yes," you answer.

"So, my question is, miss Morgan Le Fay-" Roxy grins, and then asks, "Was King Authur really real? Was Camelot and the Round Table and all of that fancy fantasy stuff really really real?"

Ah.

"Yes and no," you say. "There was a person who drew a Sword and became 'King' of Camelot... but the title of 'King' was slightly erroneous considering the person who drew the sword was a woman and not a man."

"...So King Arthur...?" Roxy trails off, staring at you, slightly confused.

"Artoria Pendragon, rather than Arthur Pendragon," you answer. "People just assumed she was an extremely feminine boy of young age at the time and, well... it helped keep her family safe from her enemies. People looking to harm the family of 'Arthur' would have a very hard time finding the family of a man who did not exist."

"Wow..." Roxy turns to stare out the window. "That's... really, really heavy."

So for a few moments, you both stare out at the transformed planet...

"Hey," she asks soon enough, though. "So Excaliber... was it really magic or was it just Merlin doin' Ancient Tech?"

"The original sword, Caliburn, was something local to the planet even Merlin had no idea where it came from," you answer. "I took a look at it, actually, once. It was covered in residual energy from a trans-dimensional rift."

"So... Caliburn fell through a rift in the worlds?" Roxy blinks. "Neato."

"Of course, when it got destroyed, the replacement, Excaliber, was an entirely Ancient Technology replication of the innate abilities the original sword had displayed," you answer.

"...Daaaamn," Roxy whistles a moment later. "Damn damn damn damn damn! Just learning all kinds of fancy history here! Damn! Daaaaaaamn!!"

"I'm glad you're enjoying the history lesson," you laugh.

Still... that was a long time ago.

You wonder what ever happened with Artoria and her wayward 'son', Mordred? The last you'd heard of either of them while they were alive, there was going to be a battle, and then... Well, you and Merlin had to hide the Anti-Ascended Being device away, and by the time you made it back to Earth, everyone was dead and everything was in ruins.

Rumor from the few civilians watching from a distance was that there had been a massive burst of golden light from the center of it all just before everything had gone silent. You'd wondered if Artoria hadn't taken some of your advice to heart about how to attempt to Ascend or not, when the time came, but the former King was nowhere to be found when you eventually returned to that plane of existence.

As you could never find a body- for either of them- that mystery always has plagued your mind. You wonder... perhaps another tear in space-time happened, much like whatever delivered Caliburn to Earth in the first place?

At any rate, what's going on down on the planet shouldn't be nearly as much of a total calamity as that disastrous fight was.


 

"BAD IDEA DOORS EXIST NOT TO BE CROSSED!!!" Your name is Xefros Tritoh, and you're yelling that very thing over the sound of two P-90's rapid, semi-automatic gunfire as you and Tyzias struggle to shut a once innocuously looking door to keep out a bunch of VERY GRABBY AND EXTREMELY LARGE HANDS.

"JUST KEEP IT IN THERE FOR A MINUTE MORE!!" Daraya yells, rapidly compressing a block of C-4 into a ball with a detonator switch buried in the center of it.

"TRYING THAT!!" You yell back, risking a glance down the hallway at a VERY LARGE THING that Joey immediately dubbed A SHALE BASSILISK before throwing herself onto its back and trying to cut into its very heavily armored neck from behind with her laser sword. Said sword is not doing much actual cutting somehow. Meanwhile, the SHALE BASSILISK is trying to buck her off to no avail- thanks to Joey's Arai Beetle wings.

Further down the hallway, and the source of much gunfire, is O'neill and Carter- who are shooting at a bunch of slimy, OIL BASED, IMP LIKE CREATURES that seem to burst out of the walls every time one of them gets head shot and killed.

"DONEEE!" Daraya cheers, and then hollers- "JOEY! GET IT TO OPEN ITS MOUTH!!!"

"YEAH! RIGHT!" Joey seems to Nod sharply, then dives off of the creature's back infront of its mouth.

The Bassilisk opens wide, and Joey dives down as Daraya throws the C-4 ball into its mouth.

"NOW!!" Daraya yells, and you and Tyzias jump away from the door and let some CRUDE OGERS burst free from the room you accidentally unleashed all these nasty beasts from- somehow- despite the room itself being way way WAY too small for any of these things save the IMPS to have been inside.

You and Tyzias lead the Ogers towards the Bassilisk, and Joey leads it towards you.

Then, Joey swoops down, and smoothly lands next to you as you, her, and Tyzias then duck and roll under the Bassilisk's belly and out behind it.

The Bassilisk crashes into the Ogers, and Daraya hits the C-4 detonator with a cry of "FIRE!!"

CLICK- BOOOOOOOOOOOOM!

And then everything goes silent, save for some ringing in your ears.

You glance back at Carter and O'neill, and see they've stopped firing because the IMPS have stopped spawning, and the active ones have all colapsed into piles of oily goop.

Then, you look at Joey, who seems to have the sane idea of putting her hands over her ears, and Tyzias, who is checking her glasses for damage. They're fine.

You look past the mountain of smoke and burning corpses at Daraya, and see her cheering.

Then, the smoke clears, and you see that the OGRES and BASSILISK had ROBOTIC INTERIORS, which are sparking like mad now that the respective front halves of each creation are gone.

"...hat explains why I couldn't control them like the Typheus Minions," Joey's voice surfaces as the ringing in your ears fades. "They were robots!!"

"That doesn't make me feel any better about how real they looked on the outside," Tyzias breathes out.

"Agreed," Joey nods. "Oh so very agreed."


 

Your name is Polypa Goezee and you blink as you feel as if you just missed out on a wonderfully VIOLENT EXPLOSION.

Oh well. You're busy being INTIMIDATING.

Knife to steel rod. SCRAAAAAPE.

Adria narrows her eyes at you.

Knife to steel rod. SCRAAAAAPE.

Adria's eyes narrow further.

Knife to steel rod. SCRAAAAAPE.

"You've been at this for five minutes already," she finally says.

Knife to steel rod. SCRAAAAAPE.

"I'm fairly certain that knife is sharp enough by now."

Knife to steel rod. SCRAAAAAPE.

"Seriously! What is even the point of this!?"

You pause in your motions, but say nothing, instead putting on a thoughtful look.

Then, you put the Knife to the steel rod. SCRAAAAAAAAPE.


 

Your name is Joey Claire, and you're staring into a massive chamber through which OIL is piped in and out through steel pipes, and a massive ENDLESS CYCLONE OF WHIRLING WIND cycles above you all.

Dead center in it all, is a massive, fucking, GIANT VERSION of those derpy worms, except you can't see its face because it's got it head held firmly in the massive EYE OF THE STORM above you all.

In fact, you'd be willing to bet the damned thing is GENERATING IT.

Sitting, almost innocuously, at the giant worm's base (You're hesitant to call them 'feet') is a stone chest.

"I don't think we brought nearly enough C-4 for that thing," Daraya whispers.

"Ya think?" O'neill asks.

"I'm gonna try reaching out," you whisper to the team. "See if I can connect to its mind."

"Good luck," Tyzias nods.

Xefros puts his hand on your shoulder, to steady you, and you close your eyes and reach out towards the creature infront of you.

[Hello, Girl.]

You nearly jolt back in surprise as you feel the thing's eyes fall upon you. You look up in reality and see... the worm hasn't moved at all.

So... Metaphorical and/or its neck goes up a LOT higher than you think it does.

"Joey?" Xefros asks.

"It's okay," you say. "It's just... a lot more complex of a mind compared to the Minions. Like... Polyarch complex compared to basically just a worm."

"That's not terrifying at all," Tyzias says.

"Yeah, really..." You close your eyes again and FOCUS.

[Hello, Giant Worm Thing,] you greet in return.

[You may call me TYPHEUS.]

...Ah. So the Visual Relation to the MINIONS isn't just a coincidence.

[You can call me Joey,] you tell it.

[I apologize for the wind, and the security forces you encountered reaching here, I am not presently able to stop either without garnering unwanted notice from THE OTHERS.] 'Typheus' says.

[Others?] You ask.

[Much like me. A DENIZEN of these terraformed worlds. Left to rule, and to serve as a NEXUS POINT...] You get the sensation of a shaking head. [Regardless. I sense you come seeking THE ARK.] 'Typheus' says.

[We do,] you answer.

[When I first discovered it, creating this castle of stone, it ILLUMINATED my way of thinking. Alas, I could not spread it far enough to do much good. You may have it, in exchange for hearing me out regardless of whether or not you accept THE CHOICE.] Typheus tells you.

"Choice, huh?" You mutter aloud.

"Huh?" O'neill asks. "What's that?"

"Typheus is offering us the Ark in exchange for me listening to a proposal, regardless of whether or not I accept it or not," you explain.

"It has a name," Carter breathes out. "What does it want?"

[You seek to use THE ARK on THE LORD OF TIME's followers,] Typheus begins once you've asked the same question. [There are many locations you may use it on, but there is one I would prefer above others. My Sibling, CETUS, resides on a similarly terraformed world, and remains bound by THE LORD OF TIME's will. When you use THE ARK, use it on my Sibling first. She will broadcast THE ARK'S LIGHT far and wide- further than I, or any of the others, could ever hope to spread it, fortuitously 'thanks' to the horrors THE LORD OF TIME has done to her mind.]

"...It wants us to use the Ark on its Sibling on another planet," you report. "Typheus says Cetus can broadcast the Light further than he'd be able to because English did something to her mind."

"This Cetus is probably bound up into the Prior Network Ganos was talking about," Tyzias says.

"That checks out with what we read in Adria's notes," Carter says. "She said there were nexus points that monitored and regulated the flow of 'Spiritual energy' in this galaxy. Code Names like Hephaestus, Yaldabaoth, Nix... But there was one nexus connecting them all. It wasn't named, and there weren't coordinates, but... It's her, isn't it?"

[Yes,] Typheus chimes in. [Cetus is that NEXUS.]

You repeat that information, and Xefros laughs. "So... we hit the center of the wheel, and the light from the Ark spreads to all the other nexus points and they spread out the light from there."

"So what's the catch?" O'neill asks. "Deals like this usually have a price."

You ask Typheus the same.

[THE PRICE is that once you use the light, you must kill the GREEN FIRE WOMAN on your ship. The one powering its core. Immediately, and without hesitation.]

"Adria," you growl out. [I mean, that was the plan once we got home, but why so soon? We sort of need her to power the ship to get home.]

[That will not be a concern.]

[And how can you know that?] You ask.

[Because I know what Cetus' most valued treasure is,] Typheus then beams an image directly into your brain.

Something like a Stargate, but much larger- but not as big as a Supergate. Instead of a vortex of water, you see a shimmering, silver surface, flickering instead like a wall of fire.

[And so THE CHOICE is presented. USE THE ARK ON CETUS, and IMMEDIATELY KILL the one you call ADRIA.]

[And if we say no?] You ask.

[You already know THE ANSWER to that, I suspect.]

You look to everyone, and relay the information you were just given.

They agree, and so do you, [We accept your terms.]

It doesn't occur to you until hours later, after you'd gotten the ARK removed from its stone crypt and put on the MALP, and ringed up onto the Ori Ship that while you accepted Typheus' CHOICE and set course for CETUS' WORLD...

You never did get an answer as to why immediately killing Adria was so important.

You'd worry about it more, but your concerns and thoughts are suddenly taken up by the discovery that a TINY SALAMANDER had hidden onboard the MALP and was tagging along with the lot of you for a whole other planet.


 

Meanwhile, down in the bowels of the ship... hidden away in a deep, dark corner of the ship where a wall seemed to have many holes punched into it...

With a flash of light, a small, black, mechanical spider appeared on the floor, green lines of light spawning along its body's surface.

It had been produced by another, much larger black, mechanical spider with green lines along its body's surface, and soon went to join a small fleet of three other smaller bugs.

The Larger One then began producing pieces for another REPLICATOR.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: AUGUST 1ST, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 02/01/0004.

Your name is Okurii Leijon, and you're feeling tense as you review the latest report from the SGC.

Anubis and English are fully at war in the Milky Way, focusing so fully on eachother that they don't care who or what gets in their way. Anubis's Kull Warrior army, though depleted of at least one factory's worth of soldiers, has been seen fighting tooth and nail against the soldiers that English has been mustering.

Ba'al, meanwhile, has been taking advantage to systematically scour through as much of Anubis' territory as he can and claim it as his own. The other System Lords have basically gone to ground and into hiding at this point; as sane of a move as any, you suppose.

You just hope that Joey and the others have found the Ark of Truth and are on their way to using it sooner rather than later.

There's only so long a stalemate like that can last. But while it does, it seems things in Keiko's world have stabilized and aren't quite "as rifty as a shirt worn by a transforming werewolf" - in Silica's words exactly. That said, it appears that there's atleast ONE major rift still functioning out there sending the occasional monster through.

Still, though, progress is being made elsewhere. The X-303 has been renamed to the BC-303: Prometheus, and its gotten a Hyperdrive from a stolen AL'KESH plugged into it. Now it's slowly limping its way back to Earth with short hyperspace jumps.

Callie is apparently taking on escort duty for it, as while Major Carter's arm is healed up, Doctor Fraiser hasn't cleared her for full field duty again.

Tough woman, that one. Wish you had someone like her on your staff that didn't just rely on Advanced Alternian Tech to do most of the healing, and fancy alien crystals for the rest.

And while you'd like to poach the clone of her younger self, it seems "Missy Fraiser" has decided to go off on elective courses that she declined on the first time around in life. You're not quite sure where that girl is going, but she'll be going there in style, you suspect.


 

If there were one thing you were dreading when moving operations onto an unfinished spaceship, it was the noise. The constant noise of construction. But... it's not been quite as terrible as you'd thought it'd be.

Most of the "livable" areas haven't needed much in the way of work, and the parts that weren't "livable" were further away from everywhere else that was Livable.

So... Mixed blessing, you suppose.

The BELTUS is slowly but surely being polished and finished.

You've got HYPERSPACE FUNCTIONALITY finally restored. Well. Not Restored. Fully activated for the first time, more like.

"Salazl," you greet your long time friend as you enter the Engine Overlook Room. "How soon before you can do a test run?"

"The maiden 'From Alternia's orbit to Diaspora and Back' run?" Salazl checks his watch. "One hour. Just finishing up with some diagnostics in that time."

"Awesome," you say. "Let's hope we don't get stranded anywhere unwanted."

"Oh, we shouldn't," Salazl answers. "We've got a course mapped out that should leave us near populated worls or worlds with Stargates incase of engine failure."

"Good," you nod. "Glad to hear it."

And thus, you and most of the non-test-critical staff gate back to Diaspora in that time. No sense risking the command crew of the entire Rebellion incase of ship error, after all.


 

You return home to the following sight:

"Wheeee!" Nepeta squeals as Argo lifts her up into the air. "Higher! Higher!!"

"Whaaat!?' Argo asks. "Any higher and you'll be in space!!"

And then Nepeta's bright eyes lock onto you, and she squeals. "Momma!!"

"Hey, Okurii, welcome back," Argo says, bringing Nepeta down to arm level and handing your daughter back over to you.

"Thanks again for watching her today, Argo," you say to Argo.

"It's no problem," they answer. "Jane and Jake said they'd keep Hal out of trouble, so... I don't mind. She's a lot like my younger self too, with their likes and dislikes, so it's nothing I'm not used to."

"Still, thanks again," you smile.

"So, hyperspace engine test today?" Argo asks.

"Yes," you nod. "Sal says there shouldn't be any problems with it. But... precautions and all."

"Mmh," Argo nods. "Always smart idea."

"You going to stay for dinner?" You ask.

"Sure," they nod.

"So how are things going with Hal?" You ask as you move to settle Nepeta down in the kitchen, and maybe see about getting dinner going.

"He's still being a stubborn brat, more than he has any right being, but I think having to put up with two hyperactive Alternian Girls who are paradoxically both older and younger than him has got him raaaather sedated, and tired out from all the running," Argo giggles. "At any rate. He's calmed down a little bit more now. I think he's finally realizing what an advantage it is..." They sigh. "Ah, to be young again."

"You say that as if we're both old and wizened beyond our years," you remark, glancing into the pantry for supplies.

"Chicken Soup! Chicken Soup!!" Nepeta cries out, demanding a favored dish.

Hmm. You do have leftover broth from last night... And some cut up chicken chunks...

"How do egg noodles with chicken broth and chunks sound?" You ask, and get positives in response.

"So how are things back on Earth going?" Argo asks.

As you work on prepping dinner, you repeat the report you read earlier.

"Sounds like things are going crazy over there," Argo says once you've finished.

"Yeah," you say. "Thinking about heading back soon?"

"Mmh," Argo nods. "John and Jade should be finishing with their studies soon, so... Yeah. Soon-ish."

"Speaking of studies," you say, "What about you?"

"Eh," they shrug. "Since I couldn't do school proper without people seeing wings and ears, I just did everything at home. I actually finished everything up to highschool graduation level about a month before we even went to Abydos."

"...Seriously?" you stare at them,

"Yup," Argo nods. "I've also been doing some college level stuff off and on since we got back from Abydos."

"...Where have you found the time?" You ask.

"Rogue of, I steal myself some free minutes here and there," Argo answers.

"...The most mundane use of time powers imaginable," you observe.

"Hah! Yeah. Something like that."

Chapter Text

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: AUGUST 2ND, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 02/02/0004.

In all Galaxies, there is a super massive Black Hole holding everything together. The gravity of such a thing presses down on space, pulling in matter around it... and yet, it is not so completely destructive. A Balance is struck. The matter caught up in that Black Hole's pull typically remains far enough out as to have such a pull be unnoticeable.

And yet, that pull is there, holding a Galaxy Together so that the majority of pieces don't go flying out into the void with nothing to hold them together.

On the very edges of that habitable internal edge, on what could be considered the eye of the storm, was a small white star, with a small rainbow hued planet in orbit of it.

One day, that planet may be sucked into the void of doom- that utterly inescapable black hole...

But that day will not be for millions of years more, according to the ships sensors.

Your name is Roxy Lalonde- once Roxy Egbert, and once Roxy Lalonde yet again- and your ears fill in the droning, utterly crackling, sucking sounds that you'd expect from years and years and years of Sci-fi movies that got it wrong and made space have SOUND.

You simply look out at this massive black hole, a balance of death to the life elsewhere.

Your mind has only one term for this sight, and it is VOID. Strangely enough, it doesn't terrify you at all. Not like P3W-451's black hole that Earth dialed into. Of course, that was its own set of problems compared to this.

"If there's ever a power source to jump dimensions, I'd say that's it," Joey remarks.

Oh Joey. Your once sweet little niece-slash-constant babysitting duty charge. She's changed. You all have, really, but...

Yeah.

She's not a little girl any more. And you're not her minder anymore, either.

The crackling, droning, wooshing sounds in your ears continue on- source of imagination only. It's like a siren's call, though. You see the image, and you just HAVE to make the image have sounds to fill it in.

It's like watching two dots fly at each other and then pass by- if you think they're bouncing away from each other, your brain hears a nonexistent "clack!" of the hitting.

"Yeah," Tyzias says. "If being on the edge of a newly formed Black Hole's eventhorizon could make P3W's gate stay active indefinitely, at this distance of an even larger black hole? There's no telling what kind of super-massive tech devices you could power with it."

"Do we have a lock on where the Mirror-gate is?" Joey asks.

"Either inside or beneath a very large, very tall, and very, very pink tower structure on the planet," Xefros reports. Oh, good thing he was working on that because you weren't working on that AT ALL. Whoops. "Planet itself seems to be maid primarily of Chalk and some form of energy-laced water."

And then the radio buzzes, Trizza speaking, "Hey, Scrubs, I found something and you're gonna want to see this."


 

Everyone who can manages finds their way down to the bowels of the ship, into a part nobody except Trizza seems to have wanted to explore.

Honestly, you'd nearly forgotten she was even really here. Where's she been?? Sulking around in the shadows like a disposed Heiress, likely.

At any rate, she seems to have found something very very concerning- a wall with large holes melted into it.

"Well, either they made this ship wall out of swiss cheese, or we've got a Replicator Problem," Your fellow clone Jimmyy O'neill remarks.

"How did they even get onboard?" Fellow Clone Sam Carter asks.

"I've got a few ideas," Joey says, decaptchaloguing a Replicator Block shaped crystal and holding it up to the dim lighting. "One of them makes me mad at Typheus, the other makes me wondering what the hell Penny is thinking with this time loop business." She re-captchalogues it. "Either way, we've got another reason to kill Adria. Can't let Replicators get hold of an Ori ship on a permanent basis."

"I'm not sure that's what they're after," Trizza says. "This is the only wall I've found like this, and the damaged parts are small, out of the way, disconnected from major systems. Hell, most of the damage I've been able to verify here is actively targeted to avoid tech and power lines and anything at all that they'd normally go for. Best I can figure, they've just stolen basic metal and framework materials from the wall, and they could only make like, ten total with this amount of stolen matter."

"That doesn't fit the bugs at all," O'neill says. "Why would they do that? They're ALL about the tech and they're all about as making as many of themselves as possible."

"If Penny made them with a mission, we might not have to worry about them," Joey says. "Either way, they're not actively hurting the ship or attacking us, so if they want to play hide and seek, I say, let them. We'll kill the ship with Adria and we'll hunt the bugs after that if they're hostile."

"You say that as if they're never hostile," O'neill remarks.

"There was Polendina," Carter says. "She did seem to genuinely want to help us."

"Just because she was friendly to us didn't mean she wasn't hostile to someone else," O'neill counters. "Namely, the other Replicators." He points at the wall. "Could be the same thing here."

"Only question then," you voice up. "Is just who these bugs are pissed off at enough to be friendly to us?"

Joey gets a thoughtful look on her face that you recognize as her solving a fiendishly difficult video game level. "Huh," is all she says on the matter before turning to walk away.

Yeah, you're not going to get an answer out of her any time soon.


 

"Hey! Claire!!"

Your name is Joey Claire, and you try not to flinch as Trizza catches up to you.

"Yeah, Tethis?" You ask.

"What's your deal? We should be hunting those things down and ending them!" She says.

"Have you Seen any Replicators around the last few weeks you've been down in the bowels of the ship?" You ask.

"...Well, no," she answers. "Just the wall."

"They're not causing us trouble, which goes against the usual M.O.," you say. "I've got a sneaky suspicion either Typheus made 'em and hid them on our ship, or Penny did something to put them onboard. More the latter than the former, and if that's the case, I think I know why and who she's got the bugs dead set on attacking."

"And you're just going to let them do it??" Trizza asks, frowning.

"If I'm right, and Penny's behind it, then they'll probably self destruct after, and if not, small numbers makes it easier to kill," you answer. "If I'm also right, and Typheus is behind it, he's doing it to reinforce the choice to kill Adria."

"So we're risking it all on a hunch that the bugs are from one of two people and not, say, local to this part of the galaxy?" Trizza asks.

"And if they are, so what?" you ask in return. "We'll deal with them when they start causing trouble."

"Why!?" She asks.

"Because it's been almost a full month in this galaxy without them causing trouble!?" You ask in turn. "They don't usually WAIT THAT LONG! So whatever reason it is they have for being slow breeders this time, let's not disturb them out of it, alright?"

"...Fine," Trizza relents. "When do we ring down to the planet?"

"Well," you answer. "The same time we're landing the ship."

"We can do that?" She asks.

You grin.


 

From the perspective of the Green Suited humans standing on the chalky beach, the rainbow rain clouds above suddenly parted as the Ori Ship came hurtling through the atmosphere, heading straight for the ground next to the massive pink tower that was CETUS'S HOME.

WWWHAAAMMM!!

It crashed before anyone could do anything, causing the entire island of chalk to shake violently and fracture in many places from the strain of impact.

The ship would be searched for survivors, and in that search, they would find nothing alive.

What they found instead was so very much dead that its very touch could kill a man as straight as a sword through the heart.

Not being metaphorical there, by the way. The men sent to search the ship died with swords through the heart.


 

Your name is Xefros Tritoh, and you're feeling anxious as you climb down past level after level of stairs and stairs of the Pink Tower, trying to get to the bottom.

Thankfully, the Tower's Security Staff all seem pre-occupied by the crashed ship, and dealing with that, rather than securing the Tower's Ring Platform. Of course, having Adria in your party likely makes the security system ignore your entire group too, so... Benefit of keeping her prisoner?

Maybe.

Who knows, you sure don't.

At any rate, if not for that, the hard part in all of this would be getting the ARK down the stairs if it had refused to be Captchalogued. Which it almost did to everyone except for Mierfa, who was still using one of the old Prototype Fetch Modus models from way back when they were first being worked on.

At this point, the real hard part is going down all these stairs.

"I don't know what you think you're accomplishing by doing all of this," Adria tries taunting you. "There's no way off this planet now that you've crashed the ship. You're stuck!"

Everyone pointedly ignored her.

"Seriously, there's nothing even in this tower. Just what was the point of coming here?" Adria tries lying.

Everyone shares a knowing smirk at her expense.

"Just- what- do- you- expect- to- do- here??"

"Can we Zat her?" Roxy asks.

"No," Joey answers, "then we'd have to have someone carry her."

As it was, she was handcuffed with three different handcuffs of various metal types, and of OLD SCHOOL ALTERNIAN DESIGN, meant for POWERFUL PSYCHICS who were getting PUBLIC EXECUTIONS and were not meant to escape before then.

Adria so far seemed to be affected by them, but there's no telling if she's just playing along for curiosity's sake or not.

"Please, as if any of you could even lift me off the ground!" Adria laughs.

"I'm not even going to touch the plethora of mass jokes that we could make here, Lady," Mierfa remarks, which shuts Adria's laughter down rather quickly.


 

The security forces surrounding the crashed Ori Ship flinch as the sound of something close to a whirling saw blade winds up from inside the ship, slicing into the walls and causing sparks to illuminate from down the darkened halls leading from the exposed entry port.

Several of the men take the logical, reasonable, and utterly understandable approach of turning tail and running for their lives.

One decides to risk shooting into the ship.

His weapon's energy bolt is bounced off of a green glinted sword and smacks him right back into his chest.

More decide to flee for their lives, as the ominous sound of mechanical chittering follows, along with bursts and pulses of green light that add to the ominous atmosphere as the saw-like blades rev up faster and faster.

A few who remain dare to rush headlong into the whirling mass of death...

The Idiots are soon relieved of their heads.

Those who haven't yet ran for cover do so now, which leaves the fields of chalk and rainbow rain empty as a single large Replicator emerges from the hallways with several swords spinning above it, seemingly impossibly.

Those swords slow down in speed and then transform into proper Replicator shapes with a WHRR-CLICK CLICK CLICK CLICK.

The larger Replicator takes the lead, marching its brethren of green glowing lines towards the Pink Tower.


 

Your name is Polypa Goezee and as your team barges into Cetus' main chamber at the bottom of the Tower, you can't help but feel as if you're facing the oncoming, madness inducing face of death itself.

Namely, not the giant half-snake-half-woman towering above you, but rather...

The Giant Metal Ring with a swirling portal of gold and silver energy through which you can see a multitude of parallel worlds all swirling by second by second. So many worlds destroyed or being destroyed...

[YOU.] A voice booms inside your head, forcing you all to look up at the giant snake woman- CETUS. [YOU DARE TO ARREST THE LORD'S SERVANT. AND BARGE INTO MY LAIR. YOU WILL DIE. PAINFULLY. TRESPASSERS!] Her face is obscured by a glowing beam of light, ready to blast you all off the face of the planet.

"You Misunderstand, Cetus!" Joey yells out, taking center stage. "We are trespassers! We are messengers! Sent to deliver a traitor to you, and to bring you a gift from Lord English Himself!"

Cetus says nothing, but the Light remains swirling before... [YOU MAY APPROACH.] ...It fades away.

Adria seems to want to open her mouth, but you raise your knife at her. She wisely remains silent.

Joey and Mierfa walk up a set of stones that rise out of the floor, forming stairs, bringing them up close and personal to Cetus' face.

Here comes the moment. You nod to Xefros, and he quietly decaptchalogues an opened Zat.

"OH CETUS!" Joey bullshits. "WE PRESENT TO YOU THE GLORIOUS GIFT OF KNOWLEDGE!"

And then Mierfa decaptchalogues the Ark Of Truth that Ganos has primed earlier for immediate activation.

And activate it does. The Chest lands on the stone platform infront of Cetus, and the lid springs open, shining a brilliant burst of light into Cetus' Eyes.

And then she SCREAMS, and the whole room seems to be bathed in that very same light.

You're left adrift for a moment, feeling as if you're connected to the Galaxy as a Whole for a moment, before suddenly feeling reassured that ORI ARE NOT GODS and that anyone who would dare eat them and claim godhood is LIKEWISE NOT A GOD- someone like Lord English, for example.

And then the light fades, and you're staggering backwards as a shockwave of energy pushes you away from Adria- who's roaring with laughter as green fire ignites around her, forming a sword made of the shit in her hand.

Xefros needs no order, he fires off his Zat twice in quick succession.

Both shots hit Adria and seem to be ABSORBED by her aura- but not completely. She shrieks and yells and vanishes in a burst of flames.

"What the hell was THAT?!" Jolinar yells from Sam's mouth.

[That... Urgh... That would be the Green Fire Devil English had cloned from a Descended Ori and the Scratch Doctor breaking free of the mental commands English had placed on her mind,] Cetus informs you, sounding groggy and disoriented.

"Well, that's just-!" Joey is interrupted by Ganos crying out in pain suddenly.

Flickering briefly, emerging from her chest, is a sword made out of fire. A sword that suddenly disappears with a flicker of energy, causing the woman to collapse to the floor.

"GANOS!" Roxy yells out, terrified.

[NO MORE, GREEN FIRE!!] Cetus yells, and suddenly a DOME OF ENERGY springs up around the room. [No More of your Teleporting Games. Grrrnnh.] She flinches, and seems to curl up on herself a bit. [Damn that bastard, English. His mind games did more damage to me than I thought they did.]

Joey leaps off of the stairs and glides down to Ganos' side, joining Roxy and Xefros there as they try to stop the bleeding.

"What was that!?" You ask, looking up at the giant snake-woman.

[One of the powers English restricted upon her birth was Teleporting. She has that ability now, once again, though instinctive. She has no control over it yet. MRRH. My shield will keep her out for the moment.] Cetus answers. [She must die soon, though. I cannot keep her out forever.]

Mierfa's recaptchalogued the Ark and is running down the steps, and you try to give her a reassuring smile.

You're pretty sure you fail miserably, though, given the sudden lack of sound over by Ganos' side.


 

Meanwhile, as the wave of cut short energy snaps back across space-time to the target destination...

Lord English was utterly decimating Anubis' ground forces, personally leading the charge against yet another cloning facility for Anubis' Kull Warriors.

Jaffa and the black suited clones fell by the dozens until-

Suddenly- and oh so coincidentally timed with a Kull Warrior managing a lucky shot to glance against English's skull- he collapsed onto his left knee, golden leg supporting the rest of his weight even as his wings flickered out of existence, and he HOWLED as his supply of infinite energy from the home Galaxy was suddenly cut short.

In short order, English's personal 3rd In Command, a green skinned dude named CROWBAR, ordered a full retreat, had another green skinned dude named CANS drag English back into a ship, and they RAN back into hyperspace.

Anubis would hear of the report and laugh, not yet realizing what it was that had CAUSED that sudden bout of power incompetence.

When he did, though. Oh, would Anubis stop laughing.

Chapter Text

Your name is Ganos Lal and you feel....

You feel odd.

You feel like there's a fire in your chest that's putting out the fire in your chest and-

And- Oh. It hurts. You'd almost forgotten what pain felt like up there. Down here? It-

Oh. Oh damn it. There's a sword through your chest.

Hah. Haha. it's made out of fire. That.

That's...

"GANOS!"

Yes, that's your name. That is indeed your-

"Ganos! hang in there! We'll-! We'll do something!!" Artoria is over you now.

"Ar-Artoria??" You blink. "When did you get pink eyes??"

"Wha- Nonono! I'm Roxy! Rolal! Roxy Lalonde! C'mon! Stay with us, Ganos!"

Roxy? Wha- Oh. Right. Right. Wrong era. Yes. Roxy.

And then there's someone else- who? No. Joey. Right. Joey Claire.

"Oh god, it severed her spine-- Fuckfuckfuckfuck!" Ahw'as heys....

Wait. No. Wrong language. What language was that even? You can't remember.

Now she's putting her hands on your chest.

Wait. Where did the sword go? It... Right. It was made out of fire. of course it'd vanish eventually.

You suppose your end had to come eventually. You cheated death so many yimes before. Yimes? Rhimes?? No. Times. So many Times. You've. Cheated... What...

What were you cheating? It...

"Ganos!! Ascend!!" a boy is yelling.

You.

What.

Who's he? Zeetros?

...And Ascending?

How do you even...?

"I don't-"

Your name is-

You.

Your name is Morgan La... Morgan Le...

Lee. Laa. Loo... Luu....

La. Laaaa...

"Ganos!! Ganos! Stay with us!!"

Artoria? Her eyes are- She's trying to-

But. But there's still that concern.

"Ar-" you hitch. "Artoria t-tell---" You can't breath. Oh why can't you breathe?? It- "Mor-...-Mordred--" You- It-- "I'm sorry."

"I-" Pink eyes stare at you, blinking in concern, then. "Okay. I'll tell her."

"Thank--"


Roxy breathes out a shakey "You're welcome" as she reaches up and closes Ganos' eyes.

Your name is Joey Claire, and you pull your hands away bloody. You couldn't do a thing. You... Even if you had Shaper, you don't think...

You don't think it would have done any good.

"She didn't Ascend," you say aloud. "Why didn't she Ascend?"

[The Green Fire Devil cursed her soul to burn,] Cetus informs you all. [There was nothing to Ascend. A Trick only a former Ascended being would know how to implement.]

There was nothing to Ascend?

"You said Adria was an Ori," you stand and look up at Cetus. "You said English cloned her from Scratch D.N.A. so... She's an Ori that now has the power of whatever the hell species Scratch was."

[Correct.]

You steel your breath, and look down at your hands.

This stupid schism between the Ori and Ancients has spilled far too much blood as it is.

"Adria has to die," you decide. "Tyzias, Carter, get this ...Mirror-Gate connected to Aincrad; Trizza, Daraya, get it rigged to shut down permanently when we leave."

[I can assure its destruction,] Cetus says.

"Yeah, not that I don't trust you, giant snake woman," Trizza announces, "But we literally just de-brainwashed you. Don't take offense if I stay behind and make sure this Gate gets destroyed."

[None Taken,] Cetus says sounding slightly offended, but understanding.

You look at Trizza, confused. She gives you a look you can't quite parse... It's probably related to the Replicator shit.

"Polypa," you look to her, "you're with me. Mierfa, Roxy... see what you can do about Ganos' body."

"What about me?" O'neill asks.

"Shoot anything that tries to come in here that wasn't me or Polypa radioing ahead," you say.

"Got it," he nods.

And then Lantash asks through him: "What are you going to do?"

"We're going to kill Adria," you say. "And we're going to Make. Her. Pay."

And so you head back for the surface up the stairs.

"How we going to do it, Claire?" Polypa asks, a serious tone to her voice you rarely ever hear from her.

"With extreme prejudice, Polypa," you say, and then turn to look her in the eyes. "Tell me you brought something from your old Assassin Gear kit with us on this trip?"

"I'm not much of a fan of long distance shooting... but I had a feeling I'd be needing this," and the Polypa decaptchalogues a very massive Sniper Rifle.

You smile, grimly. "Here's the plan then, Poly."


 

Your name is Polypa Goezee, and you steel yourself atop a chalk covered hill as you peer through the scope of a HECATE II SNIPER RIFLE at the field Joey has chosen as her battleground.

It's not too far away from the crashed Ori Ship, but still far enough away from the tower (and thus your hiding spot) that you won't be immediately seen.

"ADRIA!!" Joey yells out. "I'M CALLING YOU OUT!! WE'RE GOING TO SETTLE THIS! RIGHT NOW! WOMAN TO WOMAN! SWORD TO SWORD!" She holds up her left hand, covered in blood, while gripping her laser cutter sword in her right hand, ignited, and already humming loudly. "THIS FEUD HAS TO STOP!"

She swings her bloodied hand towards the ground, and with a flicker of purple flames, the blood burns off of her hand.

There's a flicker and a CRACK of energy, and suddenly Adria is standing there across from Joey, a green sword of fire in her hand.

"So the Ancient is dead. Wonderful. How long does Cetus have left before her shield fails and I can teleport back in there?" Adria asks, laughing- her voice carries loudly despite her not yelling. "You should have killed me the moment you landed in the tower, fool! The seal on my memories- on my powers- was broken when you used that Ark! And I knew it would, though I didn't know how at the time. I am a GOD, after all."

"Wrong!" Joey counters. "You're not a god! You're just an Ascended Being who survived English culling your asses and lucked out reincarnating into one of his cloned soldiers!!"

"Yes, telling the galaxy the Ori are not gods is a setback..." Adria smirks- smug ass like, you're tempted to shoot her through the face right here and now. "But it also is to my benefit. When I re-Ascend, I will proclaim myself as something NEW. The Goddess who banished English from my new Dominion! I'm thinking of taking on the name 'Aldmeri'- what do you think of that?"

"I think you're a stuck up bitch who's stuck living in the past!" Joey yells, taking up a defensive stance. "It's time someone punch you firmly into the future- Adria! And that FUTURE IS YOUR DEATH!!!" And then she leaps forwards, sword swinging, and the battle begins.

Purple Aura of Flame Versus Green Aura of Flame clash as Green Fire Blade meets Blue Plasma Beam.

Adria roars- and suddenly chunks of chalk-rock are ripped from the ground and flung at Joey. Joey spreads her wings and leaps upwards to evade, then roars in turn- the rocks shatter from internal purple explosions as Joey then swings down and brings her blade to crash down--

Adria blocks, and so the fight continues.

Joey has it covered, it seems. So, you do as she asks, and start scanning the battlefield around them for the right place to line up a shot with...

Ah. There's your target board signaling to you, hunkered in silent wait behind a large, slanted rock thrown up from the Ori Ship's crash.

"Claire," you radio, "Purple Slant to your nine o'clock. Make it twelve."

Joey doesn't reply audibly, but she begins twisting the fight around so Adria has her back to that formation.

You really hope Joey's planned this right... You really, really hope she's not making a mistake...

And then Joey gets Adria in position, and forces a blade lock. She yells- "THIS ENDS HERE, ADRIA!"

You take aim at Adria's chest- at her heart. Joey's right horn is in the way, but it shouldn't take too much to readjust...

Though, if you did clip her horn...

"I AGREE!" Adria yells. "You Can't Hold Me Here For Much Longer!!"

"I don't Have to!" Joey grins, by the tone of her voice you know it. "I just have to make sure-"

You take your steeling breath, finger on the trigger, and squeeze off tight as Joey finishes with:

"-you don't take three steps to the right!"

BANG!!!

It's over in an instant, Joey yelps as a small circular chunk in her right horn gets clipped off, and Adria collapses to the ground, her sword vanishing from impact.

"Ow..." Joey radios back to you, deactivating her sword and checking her horn. "Really, Poly? That close of a clip?"

"Now we match," you joke.

"Heh... I guess we do," she chuckles. "I suppose that's fair, since I did get a bit creative with your Tattoos and all."

"Yeah, well, that aside. Let's finish the job and go home," you say.

"Right," Joey nods, moving to approach to finish Adria off.

And then everything goes to hell.

Adria's body explodes in green flames, and Joey gets sent flying backwards- only prevented from landing flat on her back thanks to her wings.

"OH WHAT NOW!!" She yells, watching as Adria gets back to her feet, and starts prying the bullet you lodged into her heart out with her fingers.

"REALLY!?" Adria yells. "REALLY!? YOU THOUGHT A SINGLE BULLET AND-. And..." She pauses, picking out a piece of horn chitin and tosses it aside. "UGH! HOW DARE YOU MARK MY BODY! I TOLD YOU!" She roars. "I! AM! A! GO-UGKK!"

And then a black sword with green lines on it punches out the reverse way through the hole in her chest you made.

"...Wha...?"

"Turnabout is fair play," Joey smirks at Adria as the small horde of Replicators hiding behind that angled rock leap out, transform in mid air into swords, and impale themselves into Adria's body in multiple spots.

One final Replicator, the largest, steps out from cover, and projects a small green hologram of a girl.

"Aunt Claire, if you're hearing this, you'd better get running or else you're going to be caught in one hell of a massive explosion," the recording says, before flickering out, and the Replicator leaps at Adria- landing on her head and knocking the woman to the ground.

Joey takes off towards you without a second thought, and you count down the seconds until she gets here by watching as the Replicators all transform into something new- dropping their green outlines for a blood red coloring that expands outwards as some kind of energy field, spherical in nature.

Mofang Technology, you're willing to bet.

You captchalogue your rifle, and let Joey grab you and carry you out behind the Pink Tower.

A moment later, you hear a massive KREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEN sound, and there's a burst of brilliantly bright red light from that direction.

When the burst of incredibly warm air follows it, marking the end of the bright light, you and Joey turn to walk around the other side of the tower, and look upon the utter destruction Penny has brought to this world.

A massive black crater of glass rests where Adria once stood, serving as an eternal grave marker for the woman's demise.

"She's not coming back from that," Joey exhales in relief. "There's no way she would even have time to ascend. Penny would have made sure of that."

"Good," you say. "That was one hell of an explosion. It'd be a shame if it didn't finish the job."


 

"Hello, intrepid viewers in the future! I am Doctor Rodney Mckay, and this-" The man on camera points at the silvery mirror infront of him, "-is a Quantum Mirror."

"What's a Quantum Mirror?" Bregman asks.

"Ah, glad you asked!" Mckay smiles, and grabs at a remote. "A Quantum Mirror is as the name implies, a Mirror that can be calibrated and attuned to a varriety of different universes." He turns on the remote, and the Mirror's silver surface flickers and transforms into a reflection of a beach with an alien sky. "We're not sure how many worlds we can access with a Quantum Mirror, but we're fairly certain the criteria is whichever universes have Mirrors or mirror like portals."

"So a Universe with a busted mirror, for example-?" Bregman leaves the question open for Mckay to fill.

"Would fail to connect," Mckay answers. "Mirrors that have been damaged, or run out of power, or flat out destroyed, fail to connect to the greater network." Mckay turns the dial on the remote to a pre-marked section, and shimmering into existence is a mirror of the lab, except instead on the other side is Joey Harley and Cassandra Fraiser, who appear to be busying themselves with menial busy work for the sake of looking busy on camera. "Now, while we in the dimension-hopping community generally of the opinion that our own worlds take precedence over the well being of others, there are times where a single threat sometimes threatens multiple at once."

"Such as English or Anubis?" Bregman asks.

"Exactly!" Mckay snaps his fingers, and transitions to a different mirror setting.

Beyond the other side is a lab.

"Now here is a-" he stops. "OH, well, it looks like they're out."

"Who are?" Bregman asks, rolling with it.

"Silica and Keiko, two dimensional alternate versions of the same girl," Mckay answers. "They run a lab together on Keiko's world, while trying to stage a take back of Silica's world. We've crossed paths a couple dozen times or so with the same enemies on multiple worlds. It's really quite annoying, actually. English is like this mossy mold fungus that keeps spreading through the same wall in like, three thousand and sixteen different worlds at the same time."

Bregman signals for a pause in recording, which is to say, they don't actually pause, but they stop acting like its the final cut. "So... where are they? I thought we told them to be on the mirror on the other side in prep for this?"

"Something must have come up," Mckay says, frowning at the mirror. "Nobody's there! I mean, come on!" he swaps the mirror back to Joey and Cassie's world, and- "OH COME ON!! Them too??"

The world was empty there, with a note reading "On Lunch Break" propped up on a table.

"At least they left a reason here," Bregman remarks.

"Yeah, there's that, at least," Mckay sighs. "Still... wonder where they went?"


 

Your name is LANTASH, and as Joey and Polypa return, your newest host/partner, JIMMYY O'NEILL asks, "So what was the big bang we heard?"

"Two Birds with one stone," Joey answers. "No more Adria, and no more Replicators."

And that's all she says on the matter, going over to Daraya and Tyzias and asking, "Is the portal set up?"

"Yeah," Daraya says. "We've got it connected to Aincrad and managed to radio to Keiko, she and Silica are on their way to the rift to meet us."

"So why aren't we going through already?" Joey asks.

"Because the rift opened up a mile over the ocean and we'd probably drown if they didn't fly out a Jumper to meet us," Tyzias answers.

"Riiiight," Joey says. "And the explosives?"

"We didn't have enough C4 to destroy the gate itself," Daraya says, "but we've got enough to destroy the control console. Cetus says she'll finish the gate itself off by throwing it at the black hole."

"I'll stay behind to make sure it gets trashed," Trizza says. "Just don't forget to send a ship to come get me afterwards."

"Right," Joey nods.

"Speaking of ships," Samantha says, as with a FWASH! emerges a Jumper ship. Through the windshield you can see Keiko and Silica in the front most seats.

"Sweet," Jimmy's elation may sound subdued to the others, but you can feel the raw energy in his very being as he sees it. 'I soooo want to fly one of those some day,' he thinks aloud.

[Agreed,] you say, [it looks quite fun.]


 

Your name is TRIZZA TETHIS, and you watch as the "CASTLE JUMPER" lifts off and backs through the rift, carrying everyone through it in one go.

FWASH!

And then they're gone.

You stroll to the nearest cover, and prime the detonator switch. You radio through, "Brace yourselves for any feedback. Rift is going down in three... two..." and then you hit the switch.

The control console explodes brilliantly, shutting the rift down near-instantly as tiny pieces of burning metal go flying across the room.

You turn to look back at the rift, and see that... it's mostly closed. There's just a tiny sliver of golden light remaining in place of where everything was.

"...What's that?" You ask.

[A second version of original rift that opened up originally in English's Throne Room, punched through from another universe,] Cetus answers.

"...So, how do I close it?" You ask.

[From this side, you cannot.]

You glare up at the snake-woman. "Could have told us that sooner!!"

[I will destroy this gateway and never allow English to build another. This rift will be buried,] Cetus says.

"Not good enough! You could do that AND you could tell me how to shut it down from the other side," you bargain, "and once we've destroyed the ring, I'll go through, and shut it down from THAT side."

[...That is tantamount to suicide,] Cetus tells you. [Without the ring to provide power to open this side of the rift, you would be shredded.]

"Hah, you say that as if I'm actually mortal," you grin. "In case you didn't get the memo, my name is Trizza Tethis, and I'm impossible to kill."

Cetus squints at you. [I see... you can regenerate from the barest physical remnants. Even a tiny splattering of DNA would allow you to regenerate to a full form given time.]

"Yeah, so tell me how to shut this thing down, Cetus, or I'm gonna go hog wild with a plan made up on the spot."

[Very well.]


 

"Sooo...." Your name is SILICA, and you lean back in your chair as Keiko guides you back to Aincrad- the Castle on the Sea looming ahead in full view for all to see. "I'd ask if you guys had a fun trip, but considering the body we've got wrapped up in the back, I'd put that as a no."

"We did what we had to do," Joey answers.

"After this, I'm just looking forwards to not having to sit around on a spaceship for weeks at a time not doing anything," Tyzias says.

"Agreed," Daraya nods.

"Before we head back through to Earth," Roxy begins, "do you think we could... give her a proper send off? I know we should wait to do a funeral until we get back home, but... I'd like to do something for her here, first. Camelot Style. You know?"

"Camelot style?" You ask.

"Like, King Arthur and Knights of the Round Table?" Roxy says.

You look to Keiko, and she nods, saying, "I think we can manage something Knightly."

Keiko explains through the rest of the trip as you come in to land, and once everything's said, Roxy and everyone else agrees that its the thing to do.


 

A short time later, Cetus stood upon the sands of the Land of Light and Rain, and held the Mirror Gate in hand. It almost looked like a Frisbee disk to Trizza as the massive Denizen reared back, took aim at the Black Hole, and FLUNG the Mirror Gate straight into the upper atmosphere.

And it flew out past lunar orbit, and past the solar orbit, and it just FLEW, and it FLEW, and by EVERYTHING did it FLY.

And it kept flying even as it entered the Black Hole's gravity well- moving so fast not even the time dilation seemed to hinder it any.

And then it passed through the event horizon of the Black Hole, and was gone.

While astrophysics of a modern sense would argue that those visuals were impossible, the simple fact of the Matter is Cetus made it move just that fast with Denizen bullshittery granted to her by English's genetic modifications.

That is to say, that Gate is GONE, man. No ruler in existence can measure the UNREAL AIR it got just now.


 

Meanwhile, on Aincrad, a large Bonfire was running, upon which a metal tray with Ganos' body lay on top of.

As the flames turned Ganos' body to ash, the metal collected her ashes into its surface as it heated up. Soon enough, when the flames went down, the metal tray would cool down, and it would be collected to be reforged into a sword- at Roxy's request.

"Why a sword?" Silica had asked, to which Roxy had replied:

"I think she'd get a kick out of it."


 

It wasn't too much longer after that that Doctor Mckay got the surprise of his week dumped on his lap as the Alternian Team came through the Quantum Mirror at the SGC, one after the other, with the whole group being punctuated with Keiko stepping through.

Mckay noticed many things about their sudden appearance, but only one thing stuck out enough to comment on:

"Didn't you guys leave on a ship?"

Keiko's warning glare was all he needed to know to not say anything more.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: AUGUST 13TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 02/13/0004.

Your name is Callie Ohphee and you grin as the Prometheus dropped out of FTL as scheduled just outside of a large glowing nebula.

"Uh oh, I know that grin," the Captain of the Prometheus, Colonel WILLIAM RONSON, remarks. "It's the same grin Major Carter got when we were testing the Naquadria hyperdrive the first time."

"Sorry," you apologize to the man. "It's just, such a different sort of ride compared to what I'm used to. Making pit stops and such. The Al'kesh engines really aren't designed to make a ship the size of Prometheus fly for long, after all, so... unlike the solid straight jumps I'm used to from other Hyperdrives... Forty-Nine light years at a time? It's so slow and steady and... unique!"

"Road Trip, got it," he nods. "So, with only five more of these pit stops left, do you want to go in and check out that Nebula?" He asks.

"Not really, no," you say. "I'm content to enjoy the view and-"

"Sirs!" One of the Navigation officers interjects. "We're receiving a coded text transmission from within the nebula."

"Anyone we know?" You ask.

"The Systems peg it as... Villein?" the Navi Officer replies. "I don't think our sensors would have caught it otherwise if we didn't have the frequency on record."

"Let me see what the message is," you say, and it's brought onto the nearest screen.

"What does it say?" Colonel Ronson asks.

"Apparently, the cloud is composed of something that's negating all attempts at Hyperspace and Sublight navigation, and would be causing hull corrosion if not for their forceshields keeping things relatively stable," you read. "The Villein onboard were forced into the cloud after being attacked by an unknown vessel, and tried to use it as cover but got stuck. They've been in there for about four days now."

"Send a reply back," Colonel Ronson says, then clears his throat. "This is Colonel William Ronson, US Airforce ship Prometheus. We've received your distress call and are willing to lend what ever aid we can muster."

"Coding, and sending..." You reply.

It takes less than a minute for a reply to come back. You read as follows:

"'This is Su'rah of the Villein Seed Ship-' Ah, looks like the closest translation of their ship name is 'Grace'," you say. "They're not sure what aid we can lend from outside, and they're loath to ask us to enter the gas field when we might be just as stuck as they are."

"Ask them if they have some idea of what the cloud's chemical structure is," Colonel Ronson says. "And if not, tell them we'll lend our own scanners to try and figure out what it is."

"Sending..." You say.

And thus begins a bit of back and forth between two ships on either side of a sticky situation.

Much to everyone's surprise and concern, the cloud of gas doesn't actually seem to be made of any known chemical structures. The Villein don't recognize it, and the Asgard's enhanced beaming tech include material sensors that can't identify any part of the cloud either. In fact, to the later, there doesn't even seem to BE a nebula or any sort of gas cloud here.

That, however, leads to a new discovery of sorts.

"We can get a beam lock on the Villein that aren't in stasis on their ship," you report, "but we can't transport them off unless they disengage the shields keeping the cloud from corroding their hull, which implies something rather startling about the cloud's nature."

"The cloud is energy based," Ronson deduces from what you've told him. "And possibly even partially inter-dimensional in nature if their hyperdrive wont activate."

"Also possibly sentient as well," you chime in. "Su'rah reported that their crew has been experiencing hallucinations. It started at first with those who has suffered some head trauma in the initial jump into the cloud, and has spread from there."

"Speaking of Psychic reach, what do you feel?" He asks.

"I'd have to get closer, possibly inside of the field to sense if it's a presence I can connect with," you say. "That said, it's not something I'd like to risk."

"Agreed," Ronson nods. "So, keep brainstorming solutions with them, in the mean time, our scheduled check in with the SGC is soon and I'll send a broadwave ahead to let them know we ran into trouble."

"Good idea," you say with a nod.


 

Your name is Major Samantha Carter, and you feel so incredibly jealous. The cloud you'd looked at through a telescope for who knows how long as a kid turned out to be a SHIP TRAP!

...And you're nowhere near it now. Of all the luck. You're nowhere near it. You're nowhere near it and- and- and- AAARRGGGHHHH!!!

{Sam. Calm down,] Jolinar tries to appease you.

'How can I calm down at a time like this! Stupid arm. Stupid Janet not letting me go out and see the space nebula!!' You rant. 'I wish I was out there! I want to see it!!
I- I want to help!'

[Janet was just keeping you from hurting yourself more. And: You can help out by brainstorming ideas from here,] Jolinar tells you.

'I... yeah, that's fair enough,' you sigh. 'I just wish I was up there in person.'

[Maybe its for the best we're not, Sam,] Jolinar says. [I get the feeling... maybe we've dodged another head injury type incident.]

You... you're not really sure how to feel about that beyond asking, 'Do we really get hit in the head that often?'

[More than I'm comfortable with, Sam. Way, way, WAY more than I'm comfortable with.]

Yeah... that's fair enough.


 

After hours and hours of back and forth and back and forth and some more back and forth...

It's done.

Your name is Callie Ohphee, and you, Su'rah, and Major Carter back on Earth, have managed to relay together a solution to partially warp the Villein's ship's hyperspace engine's emitter field to create a sort of bubble AROUND their ship, to allow them to be partially out of phase with reality JUST ENOUGH to engage sublight engines and drive out of the nebula.

And so, as you all slowly watch the Villein ship drag itself out of the dust cloud, so, too, does the alien ship that caused all of this.

It's massive. Easily the length of seven Prometheuses put together, and dwarfing even the Villein ship, which would be about four Prometheuses long.

The Villein Ship comes out ahead and manages to get close to the Prometheus enough to extend its shields around your ship before the enemy vessel opens fire.

Which it does. It extends out these massive crescent shaped wings and began spewing green energy bolts your way.

"Oh my god," someone on the bridge mutters, "it's a fucking Klingon Bird of Prey."

"Well cling on this, then," Colonel Ronson ordered- "Message the Villein ship. We open two intersecting Hyperspace windows- center of their ship- NOW!"

You relay the message to the Villein Ship, and within seconds you've both come up with the requisite workarounds to the safety protocols and executed the plan.

The Enemy ship vanishes with a startling hybrid of an explosion melded with an implosion.
Your head hurts a little just from witnessing it, and you think you just heard a Honeybee Professor screaming out in dismay from the horrible breach of causality.

Laws of Physics? What laws of Physics?

You're quite sure that whatever laws of Physics you just violated are sitting in a corner, rocking back and forth, and crying just a little.

"Let's never do that again," you say.

"Agreed," Colonel Ronson agrees.

And thus, you resume your trip back to Earth shortly there after. The Villein ship decides to tag along, because they're curious to learn more about the alliance you have with the other Villeins back in Alternia's Galaxy.

By the time you get back to Earth, but barely a day later than originally planned, you have to deal with a horrified Jolinar and a paradoxically jealous Major Carter who both want to know how you managed to make two hyperspace windows intersect *so damn quickly.*

The answer to which is really simple:

"The Villein Hyperdrive was already in a half reconfigured state as it was to get them out of the field. It might as well have been on an entirely different frequency."

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: AUGUST 25TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 02/25/0004.

Your name is Mikari Aiikho, and you... you think you've got yourself back together.

You think you're good.

"General Leijon, Ma'am," you knock on Okurii's office door on the Beltus, "May I speak with you?"

"Yes, of course," and with that confirmation, you enter the room.

Okurii's just finishing up some paperwork as you enter, and looks up with a smile. "Mikari, good to see you again. How are you feeling?"

"A bit more like myself again," you say.

"That's good," Okurii nods. "So... are you wanting to return to diplomatic duties again?"

"Yes, Ma'am," you nod. "I think I'm fit for duty again."

"Good, because Dammek's requested he and Callie return here," Okurii says. "Something about Major Vantas getting fussy over Callie breaking the laws of physics."

"When's the next Gate Out?" you ask.

"Tomorrow morning, Eight A.M. Earth Time," Okurii says. "Better pack your bags tonight."

"Thank you, Ma'am," you bow in thanks.


 

You're packing your bags when the Gate Alarm goes off. Earth's scheduled dial in, it seems.

A few minutes later, Callie Ohphee knocks on your door to greet you.

"Hey, Mikari," she smiles. "I heard you're heading back?"

"Yup," you nod. "Seems we'll be sailing past each other yet again."

"Well, if you're not too busy packing and I'm not too busy unpacking, maybe we can catch up at dinner or lunch or something?" she asks.

"Sure," you nod.

Lime Bloods are rare enough these days as it is that actually being able to just hang out with someone else of your blood caste is something of a unique experience.

You hear Diaspora and Lopan's mother grubs have put out a few Lime Blooded grubs in recent days, though, so maybe all hope isn't lost for your hue yet.

Callie heads out with a nod and a "I'll drop by when I'm done unpacking."

And so you get back to packing.


 

Your name is Joey Claire, and you and your Moirail are busy working on digging out a small box shaped hole in the ground behind your hive on Diaspora to store the ARK OF TRUTH in while its not needed.

It's been bouncing from storage place to storage place, but until everyone's sure how or if the Ark can be used agains Anubis, it's better if it's hidden away somewhere nobody would expect it.

You're using the excuse to do some LANDSCAPING. You're going to put in a WATER FOUNTAIN.

"Hey, Joey?" Xefros asks.

"Yeah, Xef?" you ask.

"Quick question," he pauses, shoving a shovel into the ground. "I've been thinking a lot lately..."

"Yeah?" You ask.

"So... Quadrants. The flush specifically. I... there was this guy I had a crush on," he begins. "Then all that crazy shit happened with you crashing into our lives and then the Bracelet and-" he shakes his head. "I... somewhere along the way, I think I stopped feeling red for that guy and started feeling it towards someone else."

"Anyone we know?" You ask, teasingly.

"Not really sure how to answer that," he says. "I mean, the first guy, I-" He frowns. "I'm not even really sure I knew the guys name right."

"Was it Dammek?" You ask.

"What?! No-!" he gets a squicked out look on his face and you can't help but giggle a little. "Geeze, Joey. Really?"

"Sorry, sorry, I know we joked about it back then but..." you sigh. "Well, I can understand better now how uncomfortable you might've been if that were the case."

"Fair enough," Xefros says. "But yeah.... first guy I don't think I even really properly knew his name so.... who knows. As for the other guy... uh..."

"Someone we know?" you ask.

"Yeah," he nods.

"Well... I suppose the question to ask then is.... do you think he feels the same way?" You ask.

"I dunno?" He shrugs. "With Baizli it was pretty obvious she hated me in a pitch way, and with you we just fell into the pale thing naturally... but... he's kind of a hard guy to get inside the head of, you know?"

"I suppose so," you frown, trying to think of guys who fit that description, and really only coming up with one or three possibilities.

Okay, maybe five if you're STRETCHING IT, but still...

"I just... I'm afraid about screwing things up," Xefros says. "Hell, I don't even know if he likes *anyone* that way at all. I..."

"Hey," you put your hand on your Moirail's shoulder. "It's okay, Xef. Whatever happens happens, and sometimes, you just have to take a risk on things."

"Like you and Mierfa?" He asks.

"Yeah," you laugh, nervously as you remember your own nerves from that night. Hooboy. You were a bundle of nerves riding a high that night. That you were.

You'd like to think you've gotten a lot more confident since then.

"I guess, then," Xefros takes a steeling breath. "I'm... gonna think on it."

"Xeeeeef!"

"After we finish burying the Ark!"

"Xefrooooosss."

"C'mon, we've got a whole lot left to unearth still!"

"Xefros, you are not going to dance around this like Daraya and Tyzias were!"

"Oh, hey, do you think we should ask Daraya and Tyzias if they want a fountain too when they eventually get a hive together??"

"Stop avoiding the damned question, Xefros!! But, actually, now that you mention it, I do wonder if they've even settled on a Quadrant for themselves yet?"

You fail to realize that Xefros has sufficiently derailed your train of thought and soon get back to digging a hiding spot for the ARK OF TRUTH.


 

Your name is Daraya Jonjet and if there was one thing you were expecting from surviving a month's long ordeal in another Galaxy, including the death of a team mate and acquaintance, then followed by a lot of debriefing of the traditional, mission sort...

You weren't expecting that the literal, clothing sort of debriefing would follow soon after.

"So..." Tyzias had asked after the first night, "Matesprits?"

You had enthusiastically agreed.

And now, given that some time has passed after that first event to settle into this new sort of routine, you're feeling that... while sudden after your return from the Ori Galaxy... it was about damn time considering all the build up of everything else that had been going on before it.

Still, despite the will-they-won't-they you two had going on, you and Tyzias have decided a running bet on seeing how long it takes people to notice that something's changed or not. Namely, that yes, you have settled into a Quadrant properly.

Turnabout is fair play, after all.


 

"So I just ran into Roxy Lalonde in my lab," you're now Callie Ohphee, having a fine late lunch with your fellow Lime Blooded troll, Mikari Aiikho, in the BELTUS CAFETERIA. "She was poking around the time machine asking about undoing history." You sigh. "Damn it, I wish I'd been on that mission. Maybe I could have changed something."

"Roxy was there and she couldn't do anything," Mikari says. "And besides, the timeline was already in flux. Going back and changing things now could be just as disastrous."

"Yeah," you nod. "Going back multiple times to the same point is just asking for Giza-like trouble. Still, I can't help but think maybe things would have been different if other people were in different places."

"Maybe," Mikari shrugs. "As the beneficiary of a time travel loop saving my life, I'm probably not the best person to ask."

"Fair enough," you nod. "At any rate. How are you doing without Jolinar in you?"

"I feel like myself again," Mikari answers. "It's very odd, sharing your head with someone. For a while I don't think either of you are actually separate people, depending on how much gets shared between host and symbiote. And when you intentionally blur the line like me and Jolinar were... it gets hard to re-establish yourself without them." She smiles, "But I think everything worked out for the best. I got saved, Argo had Jolinar out of their head, then a Sam needed a Jolinar to put her head on straight, and now she and her Jack are hooking up, and both playing host to Jolinar and Lantash. So... That's two couples happy."

"Mmh," you nod. "That's good."

And thus, your conversation lulls for a bit as you eat, pausing briefly here and there before delving finally into another meaty topic.

"So, you made reality cry, hmm?" Mikari asks.

"Oh, yes," you laugh. "It was Colonel Ronson's idea, but I helped execute it. Mainly, I suppose it was even only possible because we were modifying the Villein's hyperdrive engines as it was. I'm not sure triggering an overlap would have worked otherwise."

"You... 'overlapped' two Hyperspace windows, right?" Mikari asks, sounding uncertain of the exact terms.

"More properly, I suppose the term would be 'intersecting' or perhaps, 'bisecting' or maybe even..." you stop. "Well. Let's just say that two Hyperspace Windows occupying the same space is what happened. On the inside of an enemy ship." You pause for emphasis, then cheerfully add, "Well, at any rate my head only hurt for about a minute after so all things considered it wasn't the worst possible outcome."

"You hear what the Seers are calling you yet?" Mikari asks. You shake your head 'no.' "Muse of Space."

"Oh, sure, combine my old code-name with my sign's Aspect," you laugh. "What's so important about that?"

"No idea, specifically, but they're speaking with the reverence of a god, basically," Mikari says.

You scoff. "Me? A god? Yeah right. I'm no more a god than that bastard English is."

"Relatedly," Mikari adds, "The Seers are also saying that the 'Lord of Time is on his eleventh hour.'"

"What does that even mean?" You ask. "I suppose I can somewhat understand the metaphor but at the same time it seems somewhat lackluster."

"I think what it means is the Ark of Truth landed a damaging blow, and English's time is running out," Mikari muses. "But there's no telling how long this 'eleventh hour' will even last."

"Watch as it takes us a whole two years instead," you say. "Maybe they should have started saying its his Tenth Hour instead."

"Maybe, but that doesn't sound as dramatic, or give people as much hope," Mikari says.

"Hm.. fair enough." You agree with a nod. "Fair enough... How are Jolinar and the others doing, by the way? I didn't get a chance to meet up with them on the Earth Side before they headed back over here."

"Carter's still undecided on a name, last I heard," Mikari answers. "Though... I think she said she had it down to five names last I checked?"


 

"So I think I've narrowed it down to two names."

Your name is JIMMYY O'NEILL, and you look up from the comic book you were reading at Carter, who's standing rather triumphantly over a pile of NAME DICTIONARIES on a table here on your temporary quarters here on the 'BELTUS' (What a stupid ship name).

[Oh? This should be good,] Lantash says.

You ignore him, and ask, "So, what are they?"

"First one is in memory of Ganos's past life, Morgan," Carter says. "The other is based on the Villein ship that got caught in that nebula back in Milky Way, Grace."

You look her over, trying to fit either name to her...

Morgan Carter versus Grace Carter...

Eh.

Carter Morgan? That sounds weird too.

Morganna Carter? Meh. Too many syllables.

You decide, "Go with all of them, at once, and shuffle it around a bit to whatever sounds most natural."

Carter scowls slightly, "Come on, is that the only reason you're suggesting that?"

"What do you want me to say, Carter?" you ask. "I went with my new name to mess with the other me. I'm not a guy who thinks through names meticulously or anything like that."

"I'd rather know which you think fits me better, honestly," she says.

"Okay, fine, I can manage that," you say. "I don't really see you as a 'Grace.' And any combination of those names I can come up with just sounds weird in my head. So... I don't know. Lantash?"

And you shove the reigns over to the Tok'ra to sort this out, because really, you're not the kind of guy to think too much on this name business.

Lantash sighs, exasperated. "Well, honestly, I can't really say one way or the other. Personally, I'd say just go with Morgan because it sticks with the six letter naming convention people have going on around here. But, it's not my decision to make, it's yours, Miss Carter."

Carter thinks on it, then says, "...Neither of you are any help."

"Sorry," Lantash apologizes. "I was sort of put on the spot here."

Jolinar then speaks through Carter, "Well, if it's any consolation, we don't blame you. Also, I think Morgan is a good idea too."

Carter muses on it, then says, "Alright, I think I'll go with that then. Morgan Grace Carter."

...That actually does sound better when she says it out loud.

"...That sounds better out loud than it did in my head," you admit.

"Glad to hear it, Jim," Carter sticks her tongue out at you like the teenaged child you and she both now are.

...This is all so very, very weird, but you're getting used to it, you think.

Atleast you don't have to retake Highschool over. You're not sure you could handle the monotony.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: SEPTEMBER 1ST, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 03/10/0004.

Your name is Jonas Quinn, and with Major Carter back on active duty, SG-1 was back in the field doing all sorts interesting STUFF.

First and foremost, investigating rumors that Anubis was experimenting with a CLOAKING DEVICE is the tantamount important thing.

And that's where the "was"- in the past tense- came into play.

Colonel O'neill had gotten too close to Anubis' cloaking device, POKED THE DAMNED THING, and had been turned invisible for his troubles.

And now you're all off active duty again while Major Carter and Jude Harley figure out a way to turn the Colonel VISIBLE again.

...The sight of an office chair spinning on its own is very disconcerting.

"I'm wondering if this isn't similar to Rose's phasing ability," Jude muses aloud, similarly watching the chair spin around in Carter's lab.

"Hey!" O'neills disembodied voice barks from thin air as the chair stops spinning, as if suddenly stopped. "If the next words out of your mouth involve giving me Cat Ears and seeing if I can suddenly become a walking Stargate, you'd better have some damn good tuna ready."

"Er..." Jude blinks. "No, i wasn't going to say that."

"Even if it is related to Rose's cloaking abilities," Carter says, "the fact is it seems localized around the Colonel's body specifically. His clothing remains invisible up until he takes it off, or becomes invisible the minute he puts it on." She holds up a discarded mission vest as evidence of that fact.

"So you're saying that I could get away with stripping naked and nobody would notice?" O'neill asks, causing Carter to stop what she's doing and quickly turn around to face a completely inactive computer monitor.

"As long as you kept your shoes on, sure," you joke. "I'm pretty sure people would notice the sound differences of bare feet on concrete. That said, wouldn't you get cold?"

"Ah- good point," O'neill remarks. "...Yeah, bad idea. It does get pretty chilly down here some days."

You get the feeling he's staring at Carter as he says that but you have no proof otherwise because he's INVISIBLE.


 

>Author: Cue the Window Of Opportunity Suite.

I do so, and trigger a montage sequence in the process.


 

You are now Janet Fraiser, in the middle of preparing for an interview with Emmett Bregman when you hear the sound of paper balls being juggled.

You turn, and look behind you, and see a barrage of paper balls spinning in the air.

"Colonel," you say, tiredly. "I'm busy."

...He keeps on doing it.

"Colonel Jack O'neill!" You bark, and the balls drop to the floor. "Could you please leave?"

"....Like I'm not even here, Doc," is the disembodied reply.

...You don't hear him walking away, though you see him picking up the paper balls and stuffing them into a pocket to make them vanish.

"...Colonel?" You ask after about a minute has passed.

He doesn't reply so either he's gone and he's gotten very sneaky at walking away without making a sound, or he's still here.

...As long as he's being quiet.


 

"Wheeeeee!!!"

Your name is Davis Strider, and if there's one adorable side-effect of Colonel O'neill's invisibility, it's the fact that he's able to give anyone who happens to walk by the impression that somehow, little Nepeta is flying on her own tiny wings despite the fact they definitely can't support her own body weight yet.

"I am the Sun! I am the Air!" Nepeta caws out. "BEHOLD MY WINNNNGSSS! WHEEEEE!!"

And thus she continues to 'fly' around through the base, confusing just about anyone who isn't in on the loop.

You just smile and wave as you trail behind, saying, "Kids, what can ya do?" to anyone who dares ask what's going on.


 

"So, it's my Job to open and close the Iris," Walter Hariman says to the camera. "The Teams love it when there's a living-"

The Iris's Palm Scanner lights up and the Iris on the gate suddenly spins shut.

"...Uh..." Bregman stares out the window. "What?"

The Iris's Palm Scanner lights up and the Iris on the gate suddenly spins open.

"Is that normal?" Bregman asks.

"Probably not," Walter says, eyeing the hand scanner for any more suspicious activity.

...It doesn't act up again.

"Retake?" Walter asks asks.

"Yeah," Bregman nods.


 

You're now General Hammond, and you look up as you hear a tapping at the glass separating your office from the conference room.

...There's nobody there. Must have been your imagination.

You frown, and get back to work.

...TAP TAP TAP TAP.

You look back up, and growl out, "Colonel O'neill!"

...There's no more tapping after that.


 

You are now Teal'c.

"So I'm thinking of taking up glass blowing," O'neill says to you as you and he walk down a random SGC hallway. He, carrying a coffee thermos in hand, you strolling idly with your hands behind your back. "What do you think, T? Too obvious?"

"You are most transparent, O'neill," you reply.

"Hah! Funny."


 

"So, you turned your former apprentice into a kitten?" Bregman asks as Ka'turnal retrieves the kittenized Jayni from her carrier.

"Yes," Ka'turnal says, "Jayni was simply too far gone into her madness to leave her in a human form. To have her be like this now is a fresh start few like her ever actually get."

"A second chance to do something different with their life, correct?" Bregman asks.

"Yes," Ka'turnal nods. "It's something that--"

Jayni hisses sharply in her hands, glaring and pawing at thin air.

"-Well, she's still something of a fighter, even so," Ka'turnal remarks, struggling to keep the kitten in hand. "She's quite unruly even on the best of days."

"I suppose she'll settle down with age," Bregman muses.

"Yes, hopefully the youthful energy her current form gives her will mellow out with time," Ka'turnal agrees, then flashes her eyes and growls to the Kitten, "Settle down and Behave!!"

Jayni glares right back up at her and meowls angrily, continuing to paw and swipe at thin air.

"No, None of that," Jayni says. "There's nothing there like the last five times you've done this! Do you want me to get the Transphase Eradication Rods out AGAIN?"

The kitten wisely settles down, though she continues to glare at thin air until she decides that whatever it was has left.


 

"So... I'm fairly certain now that it's more of an esoteric energy field similar to the Ancient device we brought back that made everyone see into another dimension," your name is Samantha Carter, and you're just finishing up telling Colonel O'neill about your discovery when Jonas walks in. "The solution then should be to-"

"What are you doing?" Jonas asks.

"Telling Colonel O'neill about how we're going to make him visible again," you answer.

"Nope," Jonas waves his hand through the air where you thought O'neill was. "He's in the cafeteria eating jello."

"...Damn it, that's the third time today," you swear.

"Yeah, he's done that to me a few times today too," Jonas says, sitting down. "So... You were saying about the energy fields?"

"Right, well, it's like the ancient device we brought back," you explain. "I think if we can re-calibrate Anubis' cloaking device and get it turned off while having Colonel O'neill touch it, it should return him to normal."

"That makes sense," Jonas says. "Only problem is how are we going to pull that off without getting killed trying to get back onboard?"
Jolinar nudges you, and you let her speak, "What if we use Colonel O'neill's invisibility to our advantage?"

"Only problem will be convincing Colonel O'neill to give it up," Jonas says,


 

"Yeah, alright," the disembodied voice of the Colonel agreed without much fanfare. "I haven't shaved all day and I nearly cut myself this morning trying. How do Vampires get away with being clean shaven like that, anyways?"


 

You are once again Jonas Quinn, and sneaking back onto Anubis' test-bed mothership was even more easier than it was the first time. Instead of having to time security patrols and such, O'neill's gone through and just Zatted everybody in your path.

By the time you've ringed onboard the ship, though O'neill griped out a harsh, half-whispered, "Hello?? Hand signals??"

"...We can't see you," Carter reminds him.

"...Oh. Right."

You find the cloaking device room soon enough, sequestered away in the same place it had been before.

You'd lucked out that you'd been forced to leave the last time without destroying it. Otherwise, well...

Otherwise this could have gotten messy.

Still, soon Carter has her laptop plugged into the Cloaking Device, uploaded the 'Reverse Polarity' program, and has O'neill touching it to turn visible again.

And he does.

Except like the troll he isn't in species, but is in heart, the Colonel has put on some stupid, multi-colored, rainbow reflective ball cap instead of his usual one. He also, as was previously mentioned, in dire need of a proper shave. There's a Blues Clues Bandaid on his cheek from a cut earlier.

Nobody says a word as he takes it off, replaces it with a regular green cap, and then begins placing C-4 on the cloaking device.

"Shall we go?" He asks.

You essentially walk out the way you came, before detonating the C4 as you ring back to the surface of the planet, and then Gate out while hoping that Anubis won't dare try to recreate the cloaking research any time soon.

He probably will, but you never know with demonic overlords like him. He might not find the reinvestment of time into it worth it.


 

Elsewhere in the Universe, English was groaning and bemoaning some rather obvious SHRINKING PAINS.

The reverse of Growing Pains, the In house Tailor/Doctor STITCH remarked. Because, well, English had gotten so SWOLE to begin with thanks to eating the ORI and gaining their WORSHIP ENERGY, and now that it had been cut off he was shrinking.

But how was that possible, CROWBAR asked, definitely confused. Because lets be honest here there's no possible way this happened naturally.

Stitch agreed because seriously, the sudden-onset of this during the recent attack on Anubis was just well too time to be anything but foul play.

Foul play indeed, the one called TRACE starts muttering about his PAST LINE being all screwy.

His FUTURE LINE is all screwy too, FIN pipes up too.

Itchy voices the question of just what the hell are they going to do now. The army is itching for a fight and so is he and honestly they're in a real pickle this time if English doesn't get his powers back.

Crowbar, loathe as he is to admit it, says that the only real option is to pretend like English has other, more important matters to attend to, and to act in his name, which is almost always the case anyways even if those more important matters are just sitting on his throne looking like the utter boss of everything he is.

Stitch agrees, nobody is to find out about this. They have to be a subtle as a mouse and keep this on the down low, or else English's energy reserves would go down even lower than they are.


 

Anubis growls, looking at the smoldering remains of his cloaking technology experiment.

Despite SG-1 have been spotted last night, they hadn't damaged the device then. It was to have been MOVED TODAY, not that they could have known that. And they weren't even SEEN breaking into the facility at all this time.

Oh, no, this whole incident SMELT of English.

It must have been the speedster, who burst in, destroyed every security camera on route from the ring room to here, and trashed the cloaking engine prototype and then heading back before anyone was the wiser.

Oh, English would PAY for this...

But, oh well. The cloaking technology was barely working anyways.

It wasn't a major set back. It really wasn't... Anubis kept trying to tell himself that...

A small, tiny, barely significant part of himself wanted to RAGE, though.

But he would restrain himself. He would restrain and direct that rage at an appropriate target when it presented itself to him.

 

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: SEPTEMBER 20TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 03/30/0004.

Your name is Okurii Leijon, and with the Beltus' Hyperdrive working functionally, the whole work crew is able to take it back and forth, planet to planet, from Alternia-that-was to Diaspora and back.

Of course, right now you're parked over Diaspora, and the Hyperdrive was offline while the weapons systems were being brought online for the first time.

No sense keeping a massive power source connected to the system while another power resource intensive system was being installed, after all.

All in all, it's a fairly normal day over Diaspora at the moment. You send teams out this way and that, securing what pockets of unsecured Gates remain, and shoving out remnants of the Alternian Empire from their strangle holds on various worlds.

"Ah-" Zebede exclaims suddenly as you just so happen to enter the Gate Room right as it begins dialing in. "Incoming wormhole!"

"Who is it this time?" you ask as the WAA WAA KAWOOSH happens.

"Coordinates pin it as MR5-223!" Zebede reports. "Ah! Radio signal!"

"General!" The sound Rhubee Xaolon's voice would be music to your ears if not for the panic in her voice. "We've got a problem."

"What kind of problem?" You ask.

"We, ah, failed to secure Commander Aigehn's ship before he took off with the new hyperdrive he was supposedly testing. We're still dealing with ground forces and securing here, but I've got bad news," she reports.

"Besides that Commander Aigehn escaped?" You ask.

"Karren managed to swipe a copy of their nav computer, Ma'am. The Commander is heading straight for Diaspora with two other smaller friggates. Oliver thinks they'll be there in an hour, worst case scenario."

You look to Zebede, and ask, "How far out are-?"

"The Megaships are all out pretty far," he answers. "Astro's at least two hours out."

"Recall Astro and Delta," you order, then return to the radio call. "How the HELL did they find out about Diaspora?? Wait- no, I don't want to know just yet. Tell me later after we survive this."

"Roger that, Ma'am, must get back to the battle, Ma'am," Rhubee says.

"Good luck," you say, and without any further parting formalities, the Gate gets shut down. A moment later, you take a steeling breath, and then bellow out, "GET ME CALLIE, DAMMEK, AND SALAZL! NOW!!!"


 

The hyperdrive is being brought back online in a rush, and so too are the weapons systems being hurried to active status. Your shields, however, for whatever damned stupid reason, appear to have stubbornly gone offline of their own accord for no damned reason (You suspect someone started a diagnostic and it got interrupted during the reshuffling of priorities).

Despite this, you have a plan.

It's a cunning plan and utterly dangerous one, but it's one inspired by Callie's latest stunt in the Milky Way. Vaguely. Sort of.

You have three ships to deal with, according to long range scanners, and only one Hyperdrive window to work with. If Callie can rig the thing to work the way you want it to...

Well, a lack of shields won't be a problem.

"General!" Zebede calls out about thirty minutes out from a functioning weapons system. "Incoming broadwave transmission!"

"From??" You ask.

"...Commander Aigehn..." Zebede swallows.

"Put it through," you order.

A holographic screen opens, and before you appears a tall, indigo blooded male troll. Comander Aigehn- an ancient beast of a commander who'd worked for the Empress for centuries.  Rumor was that the Empress had modified his life span somewhat, making him age far, far slower than he should have.

According to some SPIES among the man's ranks, Commander Aigehn thought himself a GOD.

You're going to dissuade him of that notion today, one way or another.

"'General' Okurii Leijon," the man greets, standing regally, his hands behind his back, and a set of goggles over his eyes. "A pleasure to finally meet the woman behind our Empire's demise."

"I can't take all the credit there. It was a group effort," you say, crossing your arms over your chest. "What do you want, Commander Aigehn?"

"I've come to learn through a spy you infiltrated into my ranks that you Rebels have attempted to spread out and colonize planets outside of Alternia," Aigehn says, "I've come to put an end to it. The Empire may be dead as it was, but it will rise anew and your pitiful rebellion will be nothing but dust in the ashes."

Ah, well, that explains a lot. One of the adults among his ranks who turned traitor on him either was playing you, or got tortured into revealing Diaspora's location... which you're pretty sure the guy never knew at all, actually, now that you're thinking about it. He wasn't given the Gate Address...

So how...?

No, it doesn't matter.

"Think again, Aigehn," you say. "The only thing in the ashes is the Empire and its old ways. From ashes we rise again, like the Phoenix-lusus of old. The new has to replace the old or else all life dies out."

"The only planet the Alternian Race will call home is Alternia, as it has been, and as it always will be," Aigehn says.

Hoo. He doesn't know. How dumb of him to just assume and

"I've got some bad news for you, Commander," you say, "and that's that Alternia isn't fit to host life on it at all."

"I think your lies are admirable in the sheer confidence you say it with, however they are just that. LIES." Aigehn says.

"No, really, Alternia is DEAD. There's a reason we left the planet and it wasn't entirely because of rebellion reasons," you tell him. "Alternia's Moons fell out of orbit and crushed the planet's surface into a fine, storm ridden, flooded mess."

"You sound like this Descendant of mine I once met," he says. "Claiming that the world I was overseeing was riddled with structural faults and that by raising the oceans temperatures to get rid of the fog that perpetually covered it, I was going to cause the planet to become uninhabitable."

"Oh?" You ask. "What happened then?"

"I killed him for his insolence, and destroyed the planet just to spite his spirit. I am above reproach, given the gifts of godhood from our One True Empress, who will return from the so called 'grave.'"

...God Complex, right.

"So you plan to do the same to Diaspora, huh?" You narrow your eyes. "Well, that's not going to happen under my watch."

"Please, do not fool yourself, Child," Aigehn says. "I can scan your ship from here. The weapons systems are inoperable and you have no shields. There is nothing you can do to stop me. You vastly overestimate your chances of success."

"Yeah, well, I say you're vastly underestimating your chances of failure," you snarl. "Never taunt a Purrbeast that's backed into a corner to protect its Cubs, Aigehn!"

And with that, you end the conversation with a slam of a holographic button.

"Ma'am?" Zebede asks, hesitantly.

"We're going to blow that bastard out of the sky," you state it for the record. "He's going to regret threatening our home."


 

It's but five minutes now from the hour mark. Your sensors can detect a small fleet of three ships approaching at fast speeds.

They'll be here soon.

"Dammek, how's the weapons array?" you ask over radio, sitting in the captains chair of the Beltus, and staring out at the stars beyond.

"The core computer processes for the Targeting Computer are formatting and rebooting as we speak," Dammek says. "We should be ready soon."

You change targets, "Callie? Hyperdrive??"

"I think it should do what you want it to do," Callie replies. "It might fry out the emitters but we'll probably want to replace them anyways even if it doesn't. They're not exactly stock anymore and I wouldn't trust a prolonged trip."

"What about shields, Sal?" You ask.

"No dice," you get the Captor's irate reply instantly. "Power relays are fucked up for some reason. Can't get 'em running right. Might be a blown fuse somewhere."

"Alright then," you check the time and radio a ship wide announcement. "We've got a stupid Empire Commander who thinks he's a god trying to come wreck Diaspora and ruin the lives of everyone living down there. We're not going to let that happen. All hands, Brace For Battle."

And now you wait, feeling as if you're in [FREEFALL] from all the tension building up.

You don't have to wait long.

From a single hyperspace window emerges three ships- old Alternian models that should be relics in a museum somewhere. They're GAUDY. They're Gold. And they've got this stupid PENTAGRAM THEME stamped all over them- Aigehn's personal crest, no doubt.

He's messaging you, audio only.

[0:14]

"It's a shame you chose to fight instead of surrender. It really is a beautiful ship."

"Yeah, I could say the same about yours," you say. "Those belong in a Museum."

"Alas, it was not to be, one side must be obliterated for the other's own good," Aigehn replies, and goes silent.

"Damn it," you swear.

[0:32]

"Enemy Ships Weapons are Charging!" Zebede reports. "Firing in Three-!"

"HERE WE GO!" You take a steeling breath, and then-



"Weapons charged, Sir."

"Open Fire, and Don't Stop Until They're DEAD!" Aigehn orders.



"Open Hyperspace Window!" Okurii orders, and with a humm of energy through the ship-



[0:48]

As Aigehn's ships open fire on Diaspora, a massive HYPERSPACE WINDOW opens up to intercept the shots.

Surely, they can't keep it up for long, Aigehn realizes, and has his ships continue to fire into the portal into another side-space dimension.

But the window stays open for far longer than anyone expects. It continues to absorb shot after shot after shot of golden energy from the Alternian Ships weapons arrays.

The barrage continues, and Callie squeals in a hybrid emotion of excitement and terror as she watches the power readings flux and serge across the hyperspace engine's power grid.

And then the inevitable happens. The Alternian Ships- relics of their times- have to cease firing so that their weapons systems can cool down.

The Hyperspace Window closes, and Okurii messages Aigehn.

"Ready to surrender now?" she asks.

"Never," he answers. "I am a God."

"Then you'll die like an idiot," Okurii counters.

[1:20]

And then the exiting Hyperspace Window opens right back where the entrance appeared, and from it emerges every single bolt that Aigehn's ships had fired into it.

His ships are pelted with his own weapons fire.

"What the-!?" Aigehn cries out as one by one, all of his ships weapons arrays are destroyed by their own fire.

And it's truly ironic that the shields did nothing, after all, why would the shields NOT be calibrated to allow a ship's weapon's fire through them?

...Such a shame these older model ships never got the memo that those permissions and calibrations should be one way.

The exiting hyperspace window closes.

[1:51]

"What was that??" Aigehn broadcasts to Okurii, who just smirks.

"Do you surrender now?" she asks.

"WHAT WAS THAT!!?" Aigehn asks again, for completely different reasons than the last time.

"I'll take that as a no, then." Okurii ends the communication just as Dammek radios:

"Weapons Systems Booting Up! We're charging up and going hot!"

"Tetrarch Dammek, please make those ships go away," Okurii orders.

[2:08]

"With pleasure!" Dammek replies as he powers on the targeting array in front of him. Pride practically swells through his body as he watches the circuits all light up yellow, then green in confirmation of successful circuits.

All across the Beltus's exterior surface, circular weapons ports opened up and began to glow ominously as the matter creation for the weapons systems created a multitude of squid-shaped drones that glowed a bright yellow color.

And then along the top of the Beltus' front mid section, the twin plasma cannons began to heat up blood hot red as they powered on and Dammek took aim straight at the center ship.

[2:24]

And then Dammek pulled the trigger, and the first wave of missiles burst loose, flying out rapidly, trailing behind them orange streaks of light as they made their way for their targets.

They were but half-way out when Dammek fired off another wave, and the plasma cannons signaled an okay.

[2:38]

Dammek fired, and he fired, and he kept firing.

Wave after wave after wave of drones and plasma beams shot out and smashed into every single one of Aigehn's three ships.

And much to Aigehn's dismay, it just WOULD NOT STOP.

[2:56]

From below on the surface of the planet, everyone looked up into the twilight or night sky and watched as a slew of golden light soared across the heavens up into space.

Aigehn's left hand ship explosively detonated, and moments later, the right hand followed it.

The central ship, being the best armored and best shielded kept taking the pounding it deserved, though.

Aigehn tried to radio over to the Beltus, but Okurii rejected every single call.

There would be no mercy after surrender had been offered multiple times, and subsequently denied multiple times.

[3:28]

Soon, his shields would fail, and then the armor would be pierced over and over and over again as wave after wave of golden death hammered home.

And then finally, something critical was breached, and explosions began rocking Aigehn's ship from stern to bow.

In the course of it, Okurii sent one last message to the Indigo Blooded Commander:

"You are no god, Commander Aigehn. Just a delusional fool who thought he could kill kittens and get away with it."

And then an explosion took the bridge and the Alternian Commander with it,  and that central ship exploded with a brilliant climax of flame.

[4:00]

Dammek powered down the weapons array, and smirked to himself, satisfied.

Callie cried out in relief that the Hyperdrive Engine hadn't exploded from the strain.

Okurii slumped backwards in her chair, and breathed out in relief that the deed was done and her plan had worked.

There was going to be a LOT of paperwork to be done over this one.

Chapter Text

*snap*

Chapter Text

Your name is Tagora Gorjek and you entered a work-in-progress cafeteria to the strange, strange sight of a human girl/teen/woman/whatever-age-modifier-fits dancing half dressed atop of a table.

She's singing off key and off lyric in a very obviously drunken manner.

"Roxy! Come on!" the Joey Claire of this world exclaims, tiredly. "Get down from there!!"

"IMMA DANCEEEN QUEEEEN! LIVEERRR TEEEN! NEVAAAAH SEVENFWEEEENNNN!" The one called "Roxy" Sings.

You're pretty sure none of those lyrics are right.

"Excuse me, Colonel Claire?" You call out. "Do you need any assistance?"

"Tagora?" She sighs. "Yes. Please. Could you keep an eye on her while I go hunt down Rose?"

"Of course," you nod.

"Just make sure she doesn't get herself into even MORE trouble, as if that's even possible," And with that Colonel Claire storms off, muttering about this being 'the third time this week.'

"Excuuuuse me, Miss Roxy, was it?" You ask of the blonde haired table dancer.

"That's MURSSSEEESS ROOOXAAAY to you Sonnayyyy!" She whirls around, glaring daggers at you with staggeringly foggy pink eyes.

"Alright, Misses Roxy," You correct. "Hi, I'm Tagora Gorjek. I don't believe we've had the pleasure of meeting."

She frowns. "Can U Can It? I gotta dance while I still feel fuzzy in my head."

"I-" You blink. "I just mostly wanted to know where you got that dashingly exquisite bottle of wine you've got in your hand there."

It's actually a beer bottle but it is rather fancily crafted.

"Oh. I just whisked it outta tha void!" She giggles, then sighs. "Gotta fill the void in mah hart somehoooow..." She then slumps down onto her rear, still on the table, though, throwing the bottle aside and- it doesn't crash against anything, just vanishes. "Damn it.. And it's gone... All the fizzy in my head."

"Can I ask you something?" You ask.

"Why not, you'v already bought be down t'cold 'n' sad," she laments.

"Why are you drinking?" You ask.

"T'Fill th'void," she says. "Tol'ya'that'lready."

"Yes, but why?" You ask. "What drives you to it?"

"Why'd'you even care?" Roxy's pink eyes seem to sharpen slightly.

"Consider me too curious for my own good," you shrug nonchalantly. If only you felt as smooth as you talked.

"I got cloned, turned into a tyke, and left to waste away while the 'real me' goes along and lives our life!!" She snaps, suddenly very much sober. "And then I have to watch as someone gets stabbed with a sword and DIES RIGHT INFRONT OF ME! WHAT DO YOU THINK I'M DRINKING FOR!?!" You suppose whatever alcohol is in that summoned swill she's generating doesn't last long at all if she's not actively drinking.

The hangover, however...

"OW!" her hands shoot to her forehead. "Damn it!! Hate that! Why does it have to leave me with real hangovers when the beer doesn't even LAST!!?"

...Remains very much real.

It's in that moment you spot someone recording all of this on their GRUBPHONE, and you put on your best Lawyer's Guise and yell- "HEY! Get that thing out of my Client's face! What do you think you're even accomplishing with this- HUH!?"

You storm over, swipe the phone away and start deleting pictures and videos. Good grief. Some Trolls- Indigo Bloods especially. Don't they have anything better to do with their time??

It's only when you hand the poor sod his phone back that you realize you just stood up to an Indigo Blood and- somehow- made the idiot start apologizing profusely and slinking away as if you'd kicked him between the legs that you remember...

This isn't the Alternia you knew.

Things are different, here on the "Belongs to Us."

You make the decision to get Roxy out of there and somewhere private, and just in time, too, Joey returns with a cat girl with purple hair in tow.

It's a simple matter to relocate elsewhere, but you get the feeling it'll be less of a simple matter to help Roxy get over this.

It doesn't occur to you until a few hours later that you've become emotionally invested in someone you never even met before today.

Chapter Text

On another world, high up in the branches of the WORLD TREE, YGGDRASIL, the portal device leading to another world activated and suddenly spat out a glob of a fuschia-purple goop that definitely should not have come through.

"What the hell...?" One of the Fae Scientists monitoring the rift turned to look at it.

"It came through from Lord English's Dimension??" Another Fae Scientist asks, checking the data feed from the portal. They move over to go nudge the pile of sludge with their foot.

Much to that Scientists' dismay, however, a clawed hand suddenly burst out of it and grabbed onto their Ankle.

They screamed.

Everyone screamed.

Then some Security Guards barged into the room.

And then they started screaming too.

And about ten minutes later, that inter dimensional rift was shut down by a Trizza Tethis who had to put on crimson armor 'borrowed' from one of the Security Guards because her clothes hadn't made the trip intact.

"Geeze... you'd think they'd never seen a self-regenerating Troll before," Trizza griped, smirking as she picked up a pair of long swords from the Security Guards. "Dual Wield, eh? A girl could get used to that."

And so she turned to one of the surviving Fae Scientists, one of the ones with Cat ears and a tail, and ask, "So... where's your boss?"

The Cait Sith pointed up.

And so Trizza CLIMBED.

It wasn't hard to find the way she had to go. She just had to follow the ever increasing amount of GUARDS... and then kill them, leaving an ever increasing trail of bodies.

Finally, Trizza barged into the massive room that was KING OBERON'S BED CHAMBERS.

It didn't matter that he was half dressed, or the state of dress of any of the servants in the room, for that matter. Trizza DID have to raise an eyebrow at the red headed Fae woman stuck in a cage suspended from the ceiling, though.

"WHA- GUARDS!!" The King Oberon yelled out. ...To No Avail. "G... Guards...?" He stares at Trizza, fully taking in her appearance. "A-Alternian!! N-Now wait just a minute! I thought English and I had a deal! What's the meaning of this interruption!?"

"Oh, nothing much," Trizza answers, getting a wacky sort of grin on her face. "I'm here to inform you there's been a new change of management."

"W-What kind of Management Change?" Oberon asks.

"The kind that wants your head on a PIKE!" Trizza yells, and then lunges.

Chapter Text

Your name is VALA MAL DORAN, and after months and months and MONTHS of waiting for that stupid Ascended Being who called himself HANS OLO to get back in contact with you, you've decided it's been way way WAY too long as it is and you're going to just...

Well. You're not entirely sure what you're going to do with this BUTT-LOAD of ANCIENT STONE TABLETS, but you're sure there's either:

A BUYER out there who knows a translator and can make use of these things, and ISN'T a homicidal maniac of a Goa'uld...

Or a TRANSLATOR out there who can lead you out on some TREASURE HUNTING.

It's down to a coin flip, really.

Heads, Buyer, Tails, Translator.

You flip a coin....

You fumble the catch and the damned thing somehow manages to wedge itself into a gap in the floorboards.

"Oh Come On!" you wedge it loose and, after stepping WELL AWAY from that floorboard, flip the coin again.

The damned thing bounces off of the CEILING FAN and flies out the open window... Someone yelps in dismay from outside.

"...You know," you speak, glancing up at the heavens, "if you don't have anything better to do that torment me, universe, I'd appreciate it if you could give me just the TINIEST little hint as to what I'm supposed to do with these tablets."

...Maybe you could try reaching out to the Tok'ra? They were nice enough to take that Symbiote out of your neck after all. Maybe they know someone...

OH! Like those TAU'RI folk going around stirring up trouble and shit. They seem like FUN PEOPLE to give a butt-load of Ancient Tablets to!

...

"The only problem with that plan, Vala," you say to yourself, "is you don't know how to contact either of them without jumping planets aimlessly and POSSIBLY winding up in some hostile situations you'd rather not be in!"

...Yeah, you just spoke aloud in the second person while thinking in the second person this entire time.

You don't care how crazy that sounds. You know exactly how crazy that sounds.

You're the one talking to yourself like a crazy person here, really. But who cares about THAT? You certainly don't.

"Now, what to do about these stone tablets?" you sigh. "...Well, if an All-mighty Ascended being wanted them, and knows how to read them, stands to reason someone ELSE knows how to read them and they might lead to some very fancy treasure and TREASURE is always a fun thing to look for!" You clap your hands. "Translator Hunting Time It IS! Yaaaay."

Chapter Text

Your name is Callie Ohphee and you find your lab on the Beltus intruded upon by a drunken Roxy Lalonde poking around the Time Machine from the Time Loop Planet whose designation escapes you at the moment.

"Excuse me, Miss Lalonde? Could you not mess with that? It's very fragile," you say the whole sentence, but she doesn't seem to be paying much attention, and keeps poking away at the thankfully powered down device.

...

"Miss Lalonde?" You head over to poke her away from her poking away at the time device.

"Huh? What?" She snorts, jolts, and then shakes her head towards you. "What is it?"

"You're in my lab, poking at some very fragile time machinery," you say. "I should be asking you that."

"...Sorry, Cals... just wonderin'..." She says, with a sigh punctuating it.

'Cals'? That's a new one, you think. Well, new from Roxy, at any rate.

"Wondering about what?" You ask.

"...Did Penny know Ganos was gonna die when we set out to do that mission?" She asks. "Did she know that... that we were gonna lose someone?"

"I think she was trying to save as many lives as possible long term," you say. "I don't think she knew exactly who'd die and who wouldn't."

"Yeah... I figured..." She sighs. "...I just wonder... could I go back in time and take her place?"

"Changing so much isn't likely to go well, considering how much everything's already been changed," you say.

"But what's a little more change going to do in the long run?" she asks.

"We never know what butterflies will flap," you answer. "Saving Ganos could lead to Adria surviving and getting Ba'al-jacked and lead to Penny having to travel back *again* to set things right for a second time for all we know!"

"...Yeah, okay, fair," Roxy sighs. "Thanks for listenin', Cals."

"It's no problem," you say.

She idles around for a moment, then looks at a nearby replica of a Replicator Disruptor. "So... had any luck making those things work against the anti-disruptor shit Reese made?"

"Not as of yet," you answer, "but I've examined the original a few times, and I'm getting the feeling it does something different than the replicas we've made. Something I can't quite grasp yet. It seems to always work against my experiments, regardless of how I've calibrated their resistance, or how I've replicated the Replicator's defenses. I'm not sure if that's just an error on my part, or there's something there I haven't grasped yet."

"Well, if you need an extra set of eyes to look at it, I'm here for it," Roxy volunteers.

"Thanks," you smile. "Maybe we can figure something out."

Chapter Text

Your name is Jake Harley, and as another hoppin', boppin' night at the ASHLANDER'S VEIL gets up and groovin', your Gal CHIXIE ROIXMR is warming up in prep of going on stage. She's the top billing tonight, going to premiere her NEWEST SONG TONIGHT, while some up-comer fresh blood to the scene is getting ready to make their debut as the opening act.

This Cerulean Chick is an oddball in terms of looks, that's for sure. One of her eyes is fully yellow, and other has this sort of X shape to the irises in it.

"Hello everybodye!! Here's a songe I've been working on for a while! Please be kinde it's my firste!" the girl begins, grinning a disturbingly familiar grin. You've delt with your fair share of con artists over the years. She's got that same grin that says "I'm about to sell you some grade A bullshit." She gives some weird ass name that doesn't even sound legitimate, and then--

She starts strumming the melody on her guitar.

You blink. Chixie stops rehearsing, and instead starts growling.

That's Chixie's new song.

You see Ventus over in the corner snapping to attention as well and ending the conversation with his Matesprit as he goes to intercede,  but-

Damn it all, Chixie's beaten everyone to the punch.

She grabs the ANNOUNCER'S MIC, and barges on stage with a "NAMAAQ!"

The girl shuts up immediately, and you can place her in that moment. Noritorious Web Pirate, Remele Namaaq.

"REMELE FUCKING NAMAAQ!" Chixie snarls. "You couldn't just stick to pirating people's stories and artwork! But No! You had to fucking go and steal my new song, TOO!?"

"I- Well-" Remele stutters. "That is to sayeee..."

"If you want your place here on this stage, you gotta do something ORIGINAL, ya hear me!?" Chixie, without moving her eyes off of Remele, then points at Ventus. "GIVE ME A BEAT, DJ! We're free styling this tonight."

And so he does.

"Namaaq, you derivative Hack, if you wanna step on my stage you'd better be prepared to take the Flack!" Chixie starts free styling it. "Art, Fic, and now my Track!? What do you have to say for yourself, thief on the grillin' Rack!?"

"I-" Remele falters, then gets into it- "Derivative!? You think I'm Deriva-Tivee!? I'll get up in your face like a sharkbeast on a free-Divee! Derivativee!? More like Origi-nalee! I'll put on a show fit for a Grand Finalee!!"

"The only thing 'Finale' is your career, Remele!" Chixie spouts back. "Down the garbage disposal chopped fine like a spoiled Salami!! And if you imagine you can swipe my rhimes, Think- Again and Again cause I'll prove I'm the Original hotter than the motor in your rusty kitchen Sink!"

The audience OOHS at that.

"Spoiled Meat!? What, like that plastic toye you Beat!?" Remele asks. "All alone in your private Room, getting off on your own slick Tune!"

"Suck your own BULGE!" Chixie counters. "I ain't got no need for sex Toys, while you're playing around slinging SLUDGE, seeking fame from all the silly Boys! Stealin' fic from my pal, Doctor Callie Ohphee- thinking you can post it all as your own product for Free!? You must be oxygen starved, on your Horse So High! You can't seriously think those shoes are Really That Fly!"

"Only thing 'fly' are butterflies in the skies!" Remele counters, not that it makes sense. "Ships like yours won't last, it's sink or swim til someone dies!"

Ow, much! That stings! The Audience is eating it up though.

"Was that supposed to be a sick burn of a flattering Compliment?" Chixie laughs, barely able to restrain laughter, but works it in. "Hard to tell with your sour breath, I think you need a Fresh Mint!"

"I- Wha-" Remele actually pauses to check her breath, giving Chixie the opportunity to continue.

"Your career ain't getting any higher than this colab, Namaaq!" Chixie goes on. "Steal from me again and you'll be called worse than a Derivative Flack! A Featherless Quack! A Talent-less Hack!" She laughs. "Come back again when you've got something original to your Name! Otherwise your misdeeds will be your only claim to Fame! If that's the road you Choose, I'd say such a Shame you want to Loose! Come speak with me again when you're Ready to Win and not just be a Circular Saw and Spin and Spin!" And then she drops the MIC to the floor.

The Audience ROARS with applause.

Remele gracefully bows out and accepts her defeat at the hands of a greater lyricist.

As for you, you feel a little hot and bothered under the collar in a startlingly pleasant way than you were a few minutes ago. You'll have to show Chixie your appreciation after the show.

Chapter Text

A distant phone's ring signals your return to the land of the waking world. And as you float back to consciousness, you hear some muttered whispering before a close door closes. Bedroom door- right. You recognize that clack of the lock latching against metal.

Your eyes blearily open up to a familiar ceiling, and you know who you are.

Your name is Argo Lalonde, and you are firmly of the opinion that there is nothing better than waking up in bed next to both of your two favorite people. Second to that is waking up next to either one. (Worst of all is waking up with neither.)

...And while you're loving and accepting of the fact that some times one of those two people is a lot furrier than they are normally, it's always a laugh in the morning when you wake up and find yourself half buried under a proverbial mountain of fur, with a dog-like jaw pressed up somewhere against your neck in a nuzzling manner.

John, naturally, is taking pictures to tease Jade with later using one of those Alternian smartphone things that Earth Tech is only just barely catching up to thanks to reverse engineered Goa'uld tech.

You flash John a girn, and mouth, 'morning' at him so as not to wake Jade.

'Morning' he mouths back, then grinning in return.

You don't need to ask what time it is. A simple flick of your eyes closed and opened re-orients you to the local time space.

6:32 A.M. on a fine Earth-born Wednesday Morning. As per usual, though, the day itself is something of a scramble. Your body's internal clock always insists its several months ahead of what it should be. You're pretty sure it has something to do with that TIME LOOP you, Colonel O'neill, and Teal'c got stuck in, plus it's probably been irritated further into misalignment because of the near-two years spent inside of a time bubble.

Your mind tries to draw forth the exact time you were stuck in there but you squash it flat because you do NOT want to remember the exact length of time you were stuck in there for.

At any rate, you think it's SEPTEMBER 1ST, but you'll have to check a calendar or a clock or something later to get the exact date properly, and re-adjust your internal clock manually to match.

Why it can't just stay adjusted you don't know. But, hey, that's crazy inbuilt genetic powers for you. They don't always have to make sense.

There's a sudden shift from next to you, and then the retraction of a lot of extra fur-based warmth as Jade wakes up.

"Mrrrgh..." She groans, ears and tail flicking, being the only things that remained from that midnight transformation. "Whuh...?" She blinks.

"Morning, Sleepyhead," you grin.

"Mornin',' Jade chimes back, then, glances at John. "Did I go wolf again last night?"

"While we were asleep, yeah," John nods. "I checked, no scratches, and we didn't wake up during it so... pretty sure you didn't go anywhere. Morning, by the way."

"That's good," Jade sighs in relief, and then snuggles up against you more. "Mornin' mornin'...

"Well, now that we're all up," you begin. "Anyone got any plans for the day?"

"Bed," Jade remarks, punctuating it with a yawn.

"Jude already asked me to babysit past us today," John said. "Apparently he got called in to help SG-1 deal with some invisibility problem that happened during last night's mission. That's why I was already up, actually. "

"Who turned invisible?" You ask. "Because that's what usually happens when it comes to stuff like that."

"O'neill, I think, from what Jude said." John answers.

"It's always Uncle Jack..." Jade remarks, squeezing in closer and pressing her face up against your neck and shoulder again.

"Well, that's certainly going to be a lot of 'fun' for the SGC," you say. "I think I'll stear clear for today."

"Same," Jade agrees.

"I could probably sneak in a few pranks if I went," John muses, "but nah. I'll let them have the fun for today."

"Then I guess we're settled then," you say. "A Lazy day at home with a little bit of past-self watching for good measure."

You get agreeing nods from John and Jade- though the latter tickles thanks to her nose pressing up against your neck funny. You can't help but giggle a little.

Yeah... That sounds good.

Chapter Text

Your name is Rose Lalonde, and you've got an uppity HAL STRIDER dumped on your lap by Argo when they went back to Earth for a few weeks or so.

Hal Strider- a temporally displaced mind clone of Dirk Strider- is a speedster, like Rhubee Xaolon or Kohiru Karren. And much like his previous incarnation as a human adult male rapper, Hal seems to have had the spark reignited in him after watching Chixie Roixmr verbally beat down a Song thief.

Ever since, whenever you have your cat ears up you've been able to hear him muttering in fast-forwards-speed rap lyrics with a heavy SLAM SLANT to them.

You think you know exactly where he wants to go with this, considering that the Ashlander's Veil just announced they're planning on doing a SLAM POETRY JAM TOURNAMENT in a months' time. Something of a multi-tiered dueling competition, like tournaments back on Earth.

Making it past the first round nets all competitors a "One Free Meal" Giftcard for the Veil's restaraunt like parts. Making it past the second nets them two more additional Free Meal Giftcarts. Third Round nets a few reserved slots on the Open Mic Nights to get some more exposure for them. Winning the fourth and final round gets them a whole night of their choosing to do a set entirely of their own design, with the possibility for a recurring job.

Knowing what you do of Dirk Strider's Job History, you're fairly certain young Hal is itc hing to get out of the SGC Cafeteria Business and back into the Rap Business.

With both the constant exercise and training of his powers, and now this to focus on, you've begun to see him take a positive upwards arc in his life.

...Meanwhile, the cloned version of your Mother...

Well, she's on some sort of arc, but you can't tell what the trajectory is right now.

Some days she's fine, seeming just like a teenaged version of the woman who raised you. Other times she's sequestered herself away on Lopan, building away at her Pyramids and other such building projects.

...Then there are the days where she goes and drinks herself into a stupor that makes you really, really concerned for her.

You have no idea how to help her out with any of this. You... you feel kind of useless.

But... that's not going to dissuade you from stopping trying to help at all.

In fact, actually, it's already driving you to try to help all the more.

You just... you have to figure out how first... So, on that front end of an already heavy situation, you're going to do what any good aspiring therapist would do:

And that, is RESEARCH.

...Or perhaps, a better term would be "ROSEARCH"?

You ask Kanaya and she shakes her head and says that's an impossible jumble of syllables and that "Rose-Search" would be a much better pun.

Chapter Text

Your name is Tyzias Entykk and you frown over the top of your coffee mug (filled with water today) at Tagora Gorjek, who seemed to have stopped in his tracks dead infront of you in the middle of a hallway, looking as if he's seen a ghost.

"Can I help you?" You ask.

"You really don't know me?" He asks.

"Not beyond knowing your face as someone who died, and then came back to life by way of not dying when they leaped through a Quantum Mirror," you summarize.

"Right..." Tagora frowns. "...So if I asked if you and he ever went to school together-?"

"Wrong age groups," you tell him. "Other you was quite a bit older than me."

"So no group projects or anything like that," he frowns, and you're not sure if he's genuinely distressed by this revelation or what. "Are you still at least trying to covertly make your own legal system?"

"It's a side hobby, though admittedly a more important one now that Alternia is Deeaaad," you admit. "I've got research and science to be done, job wise, in the mean time."

He stares at you for a few seconds longer before asking, "What's your typing quirk?"

"...'Scuse me?" You ask, blinking.

"I said, what's your typing quirk?" He asks.

"Inappropriate Capital Ms, sometimes Capital Ws if I'm feeling it," you answer.

"I thought I heard something different in how you were speaking," Tagora says, sighing. "You really are a completely different her. That's completely different from how my Tyzias spoke."

"How's that?" you ask.

"You're not sluggish on your Ms and Ws. My you elongated each respectively by three extra characters," he says. "Also, you don't sound sleep deprived."

"Admittedly, I've had help with that last part," you say.

"Ah," Tagora nods. "I see... Anyone I know?"

"Maybe?" You frown. "Depends on if I have the same Matesprit across alternate dimensions. But that might not be the case."

"AHHHH!" the screaming interruption from Bronya interjects itself into your and Tagora's hallway conversation. "I knew it!!" She grins. "I knew you and Daraya had settled on a quadrant!!"

"Ah- Shit!" you swear, remembering that, for just a moment in time you had forgotten you and Daraya had a bet about whether people would figure it out or not.

And here you go losing that bet in the worst way imaginable. Way to go, Entykk. Way to go!!

Chapter Text

 

YEARS IN THE PAST.

...BUT MANY.

EARTH.

BRITAIN.

THE FIELD OF SWORDS.

The vast clashes of blades could be heard slowing to a draw as soldier after soldier died.

Soon, it could only be heard as the distant twang of two blades.

A figure clad in blue and silver, helmet less and hair ties knocked free, versus a figure in red and grey, clad in the horned visage of a knight.

A King and their Son, fighting for the throne.

Tiredly, haggardly, they slowed, preparing themselves, and taking some small measure of mutual distance to prepare for their final blows.

"It's over, Arthur..." The figure in red growled, hands gripping at their sword tiredly, and yet with a firm resolve. "Just give me the Sword and the Throne and we can end this."

"Would you really believe their lies, Mordred?" The figure in blue asked, her blue eyes narrowing at her child, loathe as she was to admit it aloud. "That these people calling themselves 'Andromeda' would really do as they've promised and rewind time?? Not even Merlin- neigh, not even Morganna can pull off such a stunt!!"

"And you'd believe them?" Mordred asked, with a laugh, throwing their arms out wide. "You'd really believe them!? WELL, WHERE ARE THEY, THEN!?!? Cowards! They've left us here to kill each other!! They're the true chess masters here behind all of this, Arthur!"

"They offered to wait," Artoria Pendragon counters. "I told them to go ahead with their mission. I told them I can and will handle your rebellion, Mordred."

From behind the helmet's eye sockets, Mordred's green eyes narrowed in turn. "You presume too much, Father."

Mordred took a stance, raising their sword high, and generating a massive column of red energy from its hilt.

The beam shot high into the sky, where it was held.

Artoria watched it, and then took a steeling breath, "If that is how you want it then, Mordred. One final clash of blades." The King of Knights raised her sword, mirroring the stance, and then twisted a hidden portion of the handle, triggering the device Merlin had built into it. "All of our might, put into one final strike!"

The Technological Sword, Excaliber, ignited, launching a golden storm of light into the air, mirroring Mordred's blade.

"I take no pride in this, Arthur!" Mordred called out. "BUT I WILL BE KING!!"

"You're a fool if you truly believe the lies of Spirits, Mordred," was all Artoria said in reply, before vocalizing the confirmation command to the sword: "EX...!"

"CLARENT BLOOD!" Mordred swings-

"CALIBER!!!!" But Artoria swings faster.

For miles around, the sunset orange of the sky is briefly replaced with blood red, only to be overwhelmingly beaten by a brilliant surge of golden light.



OOOOOM-SHING!

One moment, Artoria was on the field of battle, mourning the death of an impossible child... The next, Artoria found herself in a cave full of treasure, with Merlin's voice speaking to her, explaining about the TRANSPORT BEACON inside of Excaliber to be activated in case of it detecting her to be near death.

Artoria looks up at the coffin nearby. For that is what it would be. Mordred's sword strike would prove to be fatal, even if not immediately so. Not even a box that would "encase" her in "timeless ice" could postpone that fact.

There was nothing Merlin or Morganna could do, with an injury of this sort. The Andromeda had given Mordred a sword to rival Excaliber, and the damage to her body caused by such a wound...

No, she would die, Artoria knew that...

But even still, she wanted to tell them goodbye.

Merlin's voice told her that they would be there soon to rescue her, to save her...

And so Artoria Pendragon dragged herself into the device, carrying Excaliber with her. If the coffin of ice were to fail... then at least the sword would not fall into the wrong hands...

And then the device activated, and a chilling comfort rose up around Artoria, filling the box with a material that looked like ice, and yet wasn't.

A day would pass, and then a week, and then a month, and then a secret protocol activated, and the treasure, and the Cryogenics Pod, and Artoria with it, were dematerialized and stored within a buffer matrix, waiting for the day that Merlin, or someone else, would come and engage the device that would make the treasure materialize again.

By the time Ganos Lal returned to Earth, she would find the battle long past... and without Merlin in her company, and Excaliber tucked away in a storage crystal... she would have no way of finding the King of Camelot to revive her and save her life.

Chapter Text

Your name is ARDATA CARMIA and you're honestly just....

You're honestly just surprised that nobody is bothering you to do anything.

You got offered a room on some random ass planet that isn't Alternia, which you took them up on. You've had free access to the community food stores since the settlement is still under work... you've had a provided living stipend for other things.

And beyond being asked to give a single report about the timeline you escaped from...

You haven't been asked to rejoin the effort here.

That's.... so incredibly comforting. There's no DEMAND, no explicit pressure to do something, no-

There's not even any BLOOD RANKING pressing down on you telling you what's allowed and what's not and-

You feel FREE.

You can breathe without having the pressure of feeding your lusus on the live internet and-

And.

And you have no idea what to do with yourself.

You don't even have a SIGN to your name anymore. None of the clothes you had on you when you jumped through the Mirror had your sign on it and... and you...

You feel so lost and unknown in this world.

"Hey there," but then there's some friendly olive blooded troll waving and greeting you every morning as you go get a coffee or some other drink (Whatever piques your fancy) and it's... it's so different.

People look at your odd eye structures and don't even flinch.

They should be horrified! Terrified!! Cerulean Bloods may have the funkiest eye structures around but generally that's restrained to the two eyes trolls normally have. But you? You have just this- extraneous- third fucking eye that's grown in beneath one of the usual ones. You didn't even get TWO SETS of eyes which would have been freaking FANTASTIC BUT NO YOU'RE A BLOODY DAMNED MONSTER AND--

And you're utterly confused with this dimension treating you like you're not the horrid monster you are.

It makes no sense.

You're just so- freaking- confused. Why is nobody treating you with revulsion?? Why is nobody telling you what horrible crimes against troll-manity you've committed???

It---???

DOESN'T MAKE SENSE???

"Hey- Ardata? You there??" Olive Blood you still haven't learned the name of is waving their hand in front of your face. What's their sign even?? You don't recognize it. It's some weird thing off of those giant metal rings people use for transport in this dimension.

"Um, yes. I am here. Vaguely." You say. "Mostly... bewildered. Honestly."

"Ah, yeah, I know the feel," they say and you have a hard time even telling their gender from their voice?? Who even? You don't know what to say. "Hey, you wanna sit down? I'll bring you some tea to drink. On the house."

"I-" you blink, then nod. "Yeah. I think I will."

You go and sit down and soon enough the troll in question has brought you a tea and soon you're just drinking it sitting across from them and and-

"Why are you being nice to me?" you ask.

"Because you remind me of myself," the troll answers. "I've been where you are. Lost, confused. Not sure what to do with myself with the changing world..."

"And you became a counter clerk?" You ask.

"I decided I wanted to help people, but I wanted to help them in my way, and this is how I can help the most people," they shrug. "It took me a while to find this place in life, though. You'll find yours sooner or later."

You consider that, then say, "Sounds fake."

"Heh," they smile. "I've thought that from time to time too."

"Sure you have," you say.

"Hey, it's true," they say in return, smiling as they drag out a small business card for the cafe you're at and write a number down on its back. "I've got to get back on my shift, but if you ever want to talk about anything, just give me a call and we can meet up."

You sit there, looking at the card... And you realize they wrote their SIGN on it but not their name.

Oh well, at least you-

Wait.

And then you realize you don't have a Grub phone. You left your old one in your Hive back on Alternia and... And you haven't bought a new one.

...You're gonna get right on that as soon as you finish your tea.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: OCTOBER 10TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 04/20/0004.

Your name is Ardata Carmia, and while in the middle of food shopping at a Diaspora market, you're quite certain you've stumbled upon and are now straight up looking at this universe's descendant of a notorious PIRATE.

Hell, the likeness is so uncanny you thought you were looking at a ghost for a moment!

She notices you staring, and continues to hold the gaze unflinchingly until you exit the market and she pointedly makes a point to grab your shoulder and drag you somewhere private.

"So. What is it?" She finally asks, looking at you with an eight-pupil gaze.

"Uh... Hi." you say. "You look familiar. But I'm not sure if it's just because of being new to this universe or-"

"Ah," she says with a quick nod, releasing her grip on your shoulder instead to-. "Alt-verse shit. Got it." She extends her hand for a shake. "Ashler Dering."

"Ar-Ardata Carmia," you shake her hand a bit nervously. Oh god, she really does look just like-

"Let me guess, historical figure from your world?" She asks. "Old bratty pirate type who got too big for her own britches??"

"Something like that," you say.

"Heh," she smirks. "So, how are you liking life here in our little world?"

"It's.... different," you say. "I... I'm relieved I don't have to do everything I had to do back home. It's... It's..." You shake your head. "I'm just glad I don't have to feed people to my lusus anymore."

"Hah! Tellin' it like it is," 'Ashler' says, grinning in a way that says she knows exactly what you're talking about. "Yeah... Sometimes we Cerulean Bloods get shit parents, don't we?" She smiles. "Me? I killed mine then fed the corpse with a time bomb in it into the Royal Lusus' gaping maw."

"You-" You stare.

"Ah," she interjects- "Just don't tell anyone I said that. It's kind of a secret." She winks conspiratorially with her one single iris eye. The seven fold iris continues to stare unflinchingly into your soul.

"Okay," you say. You feel like flinching. Should you flinch??

"Good, good," she smiles. "So...   Wanna see something cool?"

You get the feeling that no matter what you choose, you're going to be dragged to see it anyways, so you nod.

Less than a minute later, you're on the back of a motor-scooter, and rocketing off across the country side up along some hills and past some trees all moving so fast that it's a blur and you have no idea where the hell you're going.

When she stops, 'Ashler'- if that is her real name and you feel as if it isn't but then again who are you to judge?- has brought you to a cliff overlooking Diaspora town as a distant settlement.

"It's something, isn't it?" Ashler asks. "Not too long ago this place was just mud huts and some temporary wood cabins and... now it's a town. A proper town."

Looking out over it, you're inclined to agree. Buildings dot the landscape, a Stargate rests in what was once the edge of town but now has many more buildings sprouting up around it. There are roads, and markets, and Trolls walking this way and that and soon, you're sure it'll be something even more.

"It's amazing," you say.

"You're lucky, you know," Ashler says. "Getting to come into this without having to see any of the build up. It's confusing, sure, but... damn it all, if it isn't nice to think about it. Me? I was here early enough to get caught up into everything and I couldn't back out now even if I wanted to- no, even if I got the okay for it, I couldn't. Wouldn't, rather."

"Why's that?" You ask.

"I'm too invested in seeing how it all shakes out at this point," she answers with a shrug. "Gotta be on the front lines for that, and, well, I'm handy with a shield, so Astro Mega needs me on staff. Kinda pissed I missed the big hoopla blowing that bastard Gehn-something out of the sky, but, well... not as much as I thought I'd be, honestly."

"That's..." You're not really sure what to say to that.

"It's fine if you don't know what to say to that," Ashler says. "Hell, I'm not even sure I know myself what I mean by it."

"I find that hard to believe," you say. "You brought me out here for a reason."

"Yeah, guess I did," She looks at you. "Who'd you think I was?"

"Descendant of the dread pirate the Spinnerette Marquise Mindfang, once known as Aranea Serket," you answer.

"Huh. Good eye, that extra one you've got there," she answers, cracking a faint grin. "Most people don't make that connection that fast- even the ones who've met her face to face, and even then sometimes the name, well..." She offers her hand to you again. "I was Vriska Serket. Keep that a Secret too. It's just 'Ashler' unless I tell you otherwise."

"Why?" You ask, shaking her hand. "Did you do something wrong?"

"Just a lot of Lusus Feeding Related Shit," She answers.

"Ah," you nod. "I can sympathize."

"This place is a new start for people like us," Ashler/Vriska says, looking out over the town. "The people who know don't really care because that's not the person I am anymore." She looks you over, then says, "Whatever you decide to do, Carmia? That's on you to decide, not your Lusus or Alternia's fucked up ideas of how kids should be raised."

"Thank you," you say with a nod.

"Don't mention it," she says. "Now... wanna sit and stare a bit longer or head back into town?"

"I think I'd like to take in the view for a bit longer, if you don't mind," you answer.

"That's just fine by me, I don't got anywhere else to be."


 

Your name is Aradia Megido, and you've somehow come into the tender, custodial care of a SALAMANDER INFANT from another galaxy.

Somewhere, along the line, the name "CASEY" had been given... along with an ironic title of "VICEROY VON BUBBLES DE LA SALAMANCER" or- well, honestly, you think CASEY works just fine.

You're honestly not sure how you got custody of the little fellow (A girl you believe, if your meager internet searches of how to identify Salamander Genders were correct and not set to TROLL) but you've become the latest set of hands in a chain of hands carrying them along.

It's certainly a nifty little difference to your schedule from your usual stuff.

"Stuff." Heh. Now there's a thing you haven't had in sweeps!

Your usual day to day stuff is just managengaging your STUFF! You've bought whips and all sorts of shovels and HATS. SO MANY HATS!!! (Heh. Manage-engage-ing. Managengaging! Hehehehe....)

You'd like to think your standard ordinary life is pretty normal all things considered- especially when compared to the nomadic, inter dimensional warp tour you'd been on.

You wonder what Kanaya's up to? It's been a while since you last checked in!

And so with Casey strapped onto your chest with this nifty invention the humans came up with to carry their young, you skip and stroll out into town and go towards Kanaya's place.

You're sure you make quite the scene with your unique style of dress here.

You don't care! You could be wearing your underwear on the outside of your clothes while walking around town and just- like- RELISH in the freshness and spontaneity of it all!! You really couldn't care less what people think about you when they look at you and if you're coming off as insane that's just fine because just between YOU AND YOU, you're pretty sure you're a liiiiitle bit off your proverbial rocking horse lusus model toy thing as it is.

Casey manages to snag a tiny bug from the air and you heavily consider doing the same with the next one you seeeee...

Nope. That's an Arai beetle. Much too big for you to consume in one bite.

Next TINY bug. Not large sized bug.

You may be crazy but you're not INSANE!!


 

Your name is Tegiri Kalbur and you and your Matesprit, Polypa Goezee, pause in your consumption of lunch at a Diasporan cafe to watch Aradia Megido skip down the street with a baby salamander strapped to her chest. Both of them are singing some weird melody of a song with all the words replaced with "Glub" for some reason.

"Yknow...." Polypa remarks, "I thought I had cornered the market on 'crazy' here, Giri. But nooooopeeee.... My whole match stick book is but a sputtering, tiny ember of a flame compared to THAT roaring inferno of a 'I don't care' attitude."

"Yeah," you say, staring after Aradia for a moment. "That's certainly a thing, alright."

"Mmmh," she nods, and with that, you both resume eating your lunch.

After a minute, you ask, "So, I haven't seen Colonel Claire around in a while. What's she been up to?"

"Ah, she and Xefros went off to visit the Villein settlement, or something like that," Polypa answers. "I'm not sure what it's about but she's been kinda quiet since we got back from the Ori Galaxy."

"Well, with her Moirail in tow, I'm sure they'll sort things out eventually," you say.

"Mmh, whatever it is that's bugging her, I hope she sorts it out," Polypa agrees. "She's kinda no fun when she's being all mopey."


 

"Damn it! I almost had it! GO AGAIN!"

"Joey, no. You're exhausted, I'm exhausted, and quite frankly this tree's taken enough abuse as it is."

"....Fine. We'll take a break."

Your name is Joey Claire and you walk away from the tree to a safe distance before you slump down on the ground in the forest far outside any village or settlement on Diaspora.

"You okay, Joey?" Xefros asks, sitting down next to you.

The tree you'd been wailing on with your powers creaks dangerously, and then colapses to the ground.

You just start laughing. There's no humor in it but... you laugh regardless because what else is there?

"Hell No, Xefros! I'm not okay!!" you laugh a little bit more, growing a bit more tired. "We're... God damn it, I'm so far removed from myself it's not even funny!" You reach up and finger the gash in your horn where Polypa shot through it. "I'm just- I'm not even sure who I even am anymore! Before I came to Alternia I HATED GUNS! Just- hated that they were a thing- hated that people used them to hurt animals and people and- and-" You laugh again. "And now I use Zats, and stun rifles, and laser swords, and- AND!!! And I just used myself as a target so Polypa could shoot someone in the heart! An utter bitch who deserved it- but WHAT THE HELL! When I was fourteen I'd have been so shocked that I even THOUGHT that!"

"We all change over time," Xefros says. "Sometimes better, sometimes worse... sometimes I guess we do lose track of who we are and then look back and wonder what we've become."

"Hah, yeah," you sigh. "But... I just... damn it, Xefros. I'm so lost. I know who I was and who I am, but they feel like two separate people."

"And you're not sure if you want to be either?" Xefros asks.

"Yeah, I'm not really sure," you say, then sigh again. "Is it possible to take the best of both and, like, fuse them together?"

"Not sure," Xefros muses. "What are you considering exactly?"

"I haven't done Ballet or Tap Dance in years," you say. "I'd like to get back to that... but I-" you shake your head. "Honestly, I feel like diving into those full time- that'd just be me being a silly kid again. They're nice hobbies, but I need something to do that's productive and not related to killing or destroying." You think on it. "I... I really liked the idea of being a Vet as a kid. And I really liked being able to help people using Shaper. But... it's like..." You think for a moment. "Shaper is kind of cheating, though. I want to be able to do it honestly. And animals are-" you sigh yet again. You're doing a lot of that today. "Well, I haven't had much of a chance to be a vet for any Lusus or any other random creature out there." You frown. "I think I wanna be a doctor? But, like... I'm not sure if I should wait to start on that or not until after we've stopped Anubis and English."

"The way I see it, Joey," Xefros says. "If you wanna be a doctor, go for it. Screw waiting for other problems to get solved first."

You blink as you process that thought.

"...Maybe I will!" You decide.


 

EARTH DATE: OCTOBER 15TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 04/25/0004.

Your name is Mikari Aiikho, and while the whole base is on high alert for one reason, you're on a very different kind of high alert that's namely to do with whatever is currently going on.

You just.

Can't stop shaking.

You're not sure what it is that triggered this but damn it you just suddenly lost all desire to eat despite still feeling hungry and now you're shaking and you just want to be left alone but people keep trying to TALK TO YOU AND THAT IS NOT HELPING AND YOU JUST WANT TO BE LEFT ALONE.

You're trying your best to just tell people to step off as politely as you can and and and---

Suddenly, the Documentary guy is there and he's making brash announcements to the people talking to you that you have an interview and he drags you away to a quiet area and-

"Miss Aiikho. Just breathe. Breathe in. And Out."

You do so, and whenever you feel like you're starting to lose it again, he reinforces it.

You stay that way for several minutes before you feel yourself start to come back under control.

"Th-Thank you, Sir," you say, once you feel somewhat more in control of yourself.

"It's fine," he says. "After our last interview went the way it did, I-" he stops short. "Well, I felt it prudent to look up some help techniques incase I spotted it again during an interview. Didn't expect to put them to use outside of one so soon, but... I'm just glad I could help."

"Thank you, again," you say, bowing your head in acceptance.

"Well, right," he says, and the conversation sort of stalls out, not that there was one to begin with, but... "I guess now I need to go find out what all the fuss is about."

That is a very good question- one you don't feel like reviewing yourself.

"Good luck finding out, Mister Bregman," you say.

"Thanks," he says, and then heads off to find his own camera crew.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: OCTOBER 15TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 04/25/0004.

"So, Doctor Jackson, given how much time has passed, and how much memory you've recovered from your post-ascension amnesia, I think it's high time we ask: How much do you remember of your time as an Ascended being?" Bregman asks of Daniel.

"Not a whole lot," Daniel answers. "Bits and pieces, really. I remember some random faces, maybe a snipit of a conversation here or there. Sometimes I remember some full memories, but they're generally... nonsense? Like, for example: One really vivid memory I have is of this blond haired girl with green eyes talking about how she wished modern Earth Fashion had been around in her days..."

Your name is Jonas Quinn, and as you're listening to Doctor Jackson narrate snipits about memory, you can't help wonder about what it really was like about up there.

And then the interview, and everything else, is interrupted as the gate dials in suddenly from the BETA SITE. You hear soon enough that the ALPHA SITE had been attacked by forces unknown.

Major Carter and her father were both on site at the time. Colonel O'neill was not happy to say the least.

Redial attempts were quickly made, the first not connecting but the second try did, and a MALP was sent back through the Gate.

It wound up on its side, inside the crater of the expanding vortex of the gate.

"The gate's face down," you realize after a few moments.

"And it dug the perfect foxhole," O'neill turns to Hammond. "Keep the gate open while we suit up. Don't want to lose a MALP to shutting it down and reopening it, after all, Sir."


 

The MALP was mysteriously gone by the tiome SG-1. SG-2, and one extra Major Karkat Vantas gated through with a ladder.

Hammond insisted the Gate had stay active the entire time.

It had just... simply. Vanished. Inbetween the moments you stepped through Earth's side and reappeared on the Alpha Site's side.

Needless to say that was very disconcerting of a thing to behold, but it wasn't the only thing disconcerting to behold once the eventhorizon had shut down and you could all peek up past the edge of the Gate.

"The Self Destruct went off," O'neill observes. "Wide area blast radius and... Yeah. They scuttled the place."

“Major Carter and her father were working on the Anti-Kull Warrior devices here,” you say, “do you think Anubis attacked?”

“Maybe, Jonas,” O’neill answers. “It’s possible he-”

“Or-” Strider interjects, pointing his head with a nod at something large and green lumbering around in the remains of a building using a fire extinguisher to put out the remnants of an ongoing blaze. “We could be dealing with something worse.”

You all pull your heads back down quickly before that mystery someone notices.

“Well, fuck,” Vantas whispers harshly. “Matchsticks.”

“Who?” O’neill asks.

“One of English’s goons,” Vantas answers. “Dude has some kind of travel-through-fire time travel power, and he goes and puts out the blazes that summon him.”

“And you know that how?” Colburn, of SG-2, asks.

“He’s literally the only one we never managed to put down in the future,” Vantas answers. “He’s not even really that bad of a guy, really. I mean, he puts out fires! I’ve never heard of him carrying a gun or anything, not like the other Felt, but-”

“Wait, wait,” O’neill interjects. “’Other Felt’?”

“Matchsticks has an 11 on his hat,” Vantas said, “of course there are others.”

“Not the thing I was referring to,” O’neill says. “They’re called ‘Felt’? As in, Pool Table Felt??”

“Exactly the same,” Vantas says. “Hey, Strider, remember that crowbar I had way back when I first showed up?”

“Yeah?” Strider asks.

“Used to belong to the Number Seven, or rather, Number Three in command, Crowbar,” Vantas elaborates. “These bozos are actually semi-competent under him so if you see a guy with a crowbar and a number seven hat, make sure you kill him and grab me that crowbar? I need it for stable time loop purposes.”

“And you didn’t think to mention any of this sooner, Why?” O’neill asks.

“I didn’t realize English had them WITH HIM this soon,” Vantas answers. “As far as I knew they showed up after the new year.”

“So what do we do if we run into any that don’t put out fires?” You ask.

“After Matchsticks, there’s Eggs and Biscuits- Twelve and Thirteen- Run like Fucking Hell,” Vantas answers. “Quarters, Fourteen, has a coin he can flip to summon any of the other felt so shoot him before he can flip any coins. Cans, 15, can punch you into next week. Literally.”

“Who comes up with these ideas?” O’neill asks.

“English, most likely,” Teal’c answers.

“Going backwards, Ten is Sawbuck- don’t hit hurt him at all or you and he will get jumped to random point in the time line,” Vantas continues on. “Nine is Stitch, he works like a doctor and a tailor- I doubt he’s actually here. Eight is... well. They call them Snowman, but I hear its something of a rotating role. Rumor is if you kill them you kill the universe but, I’m pretty sure that’s just a stable time loop of misinformation from me saying it just now. There’s Crowbar, then Six, Die, who has this weird sort of time-line jumping power with a doll with pins in it. Not exactly sure what that’s about.”

“Again, who comes up with these ideas??” O’neill asks.

“Fin, Five, follows your future trail around. We’re best off if we off him here and now,” Vantas continues. “He’s a nightmare for operational security.”

“No duh, you say,” O’neill quipps.

“Four is Clover, as in four leaf, and his power is apparently being super lucky,” Vantas pauses, then adds, “he’s also an incredible flirt and and pervert, and fortunately for us, his luck doesn’t extend to being hit with a newspaper.”

“Anyone bring the funnies?” Ferretti asks.

O’neill reluctantly retrieves a crossword puzzle from his vest pocket for all of five seconds before returning it.

“Three, Trace, can follow your past trail, kill him ASAP,” Vantas continues, “Two is Doze, he’s incredibly slow because he can make time slow down for himself. One is Itchy, he’s the opposite, super fast. Likes to swap peoples hats around.”

“Like Hal,” Strider gripes.

“Yeah, basically,” Vantas peeks up over the Gate again. “Okay, good, we’re clear. Matchsticks left.”

“SG-2, get the Gate upright so SG Three and Five can come through,” O’neill orders. “Vantas, you’re with SG-1 until we find survivors.”


 

Your name is General Hammond, and as the SGC Tech Teams prep a UAV for going through the Gate for reconnaissance, as well as potential rocket-based death from above for any ULTRA DURABLE ENEMIES that may have survived the base destruction, the first group of survivors are ferried through to Earth. Among them are the highest ranking members of all three groups who had been on the Alpha Site and survived.

Jacob Carter is one of them, and he, among the others, were sent to the infirmary to check their injuries. Meanwhile, you’re talking with Major Strider, who’s informing you about what Vantas talked to SG-1 and SG-2 about.

So while there is every possibility that these FELT people stole away the location of the Alpha Site from tracking people to the DHDs... you have to consider the possibility that there are other security leaks at hand to be dealt with.

Once he's been cleared to leave the infirmary, you speak with the Alpha SIte's SECOND IN COMMAND and learn that the commander had ordered the evacuation due to KULL WARRIORS and then triggered the Self Destruct.

Kull Warriors that nobody has seen any sign of since the self destruct went off.

Though, you have an idea to leave some observers around for about a week to see if this "Cans" had any involvement with said missing Kull Warriors.

While you're soon preparing to visit the infirmary to check on Jacob, the Gate dials in from off world, and surprise surprise, Egeria/Joey Harley emerges through the gate after sending the Tok'ra IDC.

"Hammond," Egeria greets you as she enters your office, "we need to talk."

"Of course," you say, "what is it?"

"As soon as I learned of what happened, I... gently inquired if there were operations that I were unaware of." She sighs. "Unfortunately, some members of the Tok'ra High Council authorized an operation that I fear may have compromised the Alpha Site Security. A stupid, idiotic plan that sent one of our own to not dismantle the System Lord Olokun's sizable Empire, but instead to replace the symbiote within the host with a Tok'ra."

"And he got captured?" You ask.

"Worse," Egeria answers after a moment's pause, "This spy succeeded... And just as he was settling in, Rebel Jaffa began attacking. And THEN people on both sides got captured by Anubis during a raid that happened just last night. AND THEN, of all things, English showed his face and blew up the place, but not before capturing everyone Anubis had Captured..." She shakes her head. "Worst of all, people on both sides possibly aware of the Alpha Site were captured by both enemies, leading to the clusterfuck of a situation we've found ourselves in."

"That's... Worrisome to hear," you say.

"Indeed," Egeria says. "We've come prepared to speak to the Jaffa Leaders and propose a modification to our alliance terms. Miscommunication such as this cannot happen again. There is too much distrust for both sides, as well as towards our own people within our own ranks. Care to guess why I was left out of the loop?"

"The High Council doesn't trust you?" You ask.

"Most think me 'Fragile'!" Egeria protests. "The ones behind this stunt confessed they believed me compromised by my host's allegiances towards this world."

A pause, then Joey Harley says, "Which is bull crap, by the way. No offense, Hammond, but this isn't my Earth or my Universe. Hell, there isn't even an Alternia any more. So..."

"None taken," you say. "I perfectly understand where you're coming from." You sigh. "Sometimes Politics are the cause of more harm than good."

"Indeed," Egeria says. "Furthermore, I need to speak with Selmak and Jacob. Apparently they've been left out of just as much as I have, for similar reasons of 'age' and 'corrupted allegiances.'"

"How many others?" You ask.

"Fortunately not as many in both camps as with me, but enough to cause a huge pocket of hidden operations within the Tok'ra," Egeria answers. "There are other Tok'ra on the Council who have been left in the dark and are raising hell for the fact that their own operations were compromised by these stupid actions of a few so-called-righteous few."

"It's like history repeats itself," you remark. "As long as they don't start going the way of the NID, let's just hope this ends now without further bloodshed."

"You're a hopeful one, aren't you?" Egeria asks, a wry smile on her face.

"I can be, at times," you say. "Now then, I was just about to head to the Infirmary to check on Jacob myself. Care to join me?"

"I would be honored," she says with a nod.


 

You're now CROWBAR, of Lord English's ALWAYS TOP SQUADRON of ELITE ELFROGPRECHAUN SOLDIERS, known as THE FELT.

You're currently leading a mission to hunt down the MAJOR CARTER CHICK who supposedly has this piece of TECHNOLOGY that will let anyone kill Anubis' KULL WARRIORS without too much hassle.

Of course, you've come across the rather annoying problem of FIN having been offed by one of those damned Kull Warriors' Future Trails.

Because SAWBUCK just HAD to knock one of them an hour into the future by way of his random time jump, and OF COURSE, Anubis' Super Soldiers just HAD to have some form of temporal displacement observation technology in their helmets to be able to see Fin and shoot him. Anubis really had been planning this betrayal of English for a while, it seems.

So yeah, that was a thing that just happened.  Sawbuck just got Fin killed by punching a Kull Warrior an hour into the Future.

You never saw the wrist-mounted laser blast coming. Fin did, because that's his thing, but-- Yeah.

Damn it.

And of course Stitch has DIE with the LORD in case something bad happens so he can UNPIN that bad thing if said bad thing happens to be the Lord DYING SUDDENLY ON YOU.

Yeah.

So.

Fin is fucking dead.

Great.

Just great.

Now you've got to hunt down this Carter chick the hard way. The old fashioned way.

The-

No, you know what. There's an easier solution.

You order Eggs, Biscuits: Swarm this place. Choke the land until we squeeze her out. Leave no stupid, badly woven time loop weaved solid.

There's a moment of pause, and yet nothing happens. No oven timers ringing, signaling the arrival of countless Eggs and Biscuits to cause havoc or...

Well, anything, really.

You're about to wonder why when both of them get bullets through the head.

You're about to wonder just what the hell was THAT when you hear the sound of a shotgun cocking.

You whirl around and come face to face with the business end of said shotgun.

Oh son of a f-


 

BLAM!!

Your name is Major Karkat Vantas, and as you stroll over to pick up the Crowbar from Crowbar's now faceless body, you're wondering how much of this actually happened the first time around and your past self just wasn't paying attention, or you're actually changing things...

Oh well, given how much time travel has happened since and will likely keep happening... you're not going to stress out the tiny details of when and in what order these green-felt skinned frog-puppets die.

You sling your shotgun over your shoulder and pick up the crowbar in one hand. "Time loop secured," you joke to yourself before taking EGGS' OVEN TIMER in your other hand, tossing it into the air, and then smashing the thing to pieces with the Crowbar like it was a baseball and bat and not an oven timer and a crowbar.

There. That oughta prevent any bad end timelines where those two idiots didn't get head shot from coming into this timeline.

"That was strangely anticlimactic," O'neill says.

"What happened to 'run like hell'?" Jonas asks.

"Sawbuck jumped a Kull Warrior to the future and we just watched Fin take a blow from said future," you say. "It seemed like the time to do something risky before things got worse."

"I agree, it was the best time to act," Teal'c nods.

"Well, alright," O'neill shakes his head. "Let's go find Carter and hope there aren't any more Kull Warriors around."

"Indeed," Teal'c agrees.


 

"Sam had the Anti-Kull Weapon on her when we were attacked," Jacob Carter says, frowning. "I had the new power crystal, we were about to put it onto the prototype weapon when the lab was raided. A sergeant barged in, warned us to leave. We started wiping the computers and collecting the equipment, and then the Kull Warrior barged in through the doors. It knew where we were, somehow. It was looking for us. Killed the sergeant in the opening blast. Poor boy."

"What happened next?" Egeria asks.

"Sam tried the weapon, it didn't work for long," Jacob answers. "So we ran. It chased, then... these green colored men appeared and the Warrior started fighting them, we ran more and... then the explosion went off. When I woke up, Jack and SG-1 had found me. I gave them the power crystal for the weapon if they could find Sam and combine it then... if there were any remaining Kull Warriors they could be defeated."

"Thank you, Jacob, rest well," you say, then add, "and Selmak, don't push yourself."

"Agreed on that," Egeria nods. "Take your time, do as Hammond and the Doctors say. SG-1 will bring Major Carter and Jolinar back to us."

Your name is George Hammond, and as you and the Tok'ra Queen leave the infirmary, you can't help but wonder aloud, "You didn't tell him about the council?"

"Why would I put that on him when he's already so worried?" Egeria asks. "It can wait until SG-1 finds Sam. In the mean time... I have some Jaffa to speak to."


 

"You must be mad!"

"Perhaps I am." Your name is Egeria, and yes, you truly must be mad. And yet.... "However, I see it as the only real means of solidifying our tenuous alliance, and to erase the history of bad blood between our kind." You say, "There are Jaffa who will be in need of symbiotes, who refuse to take Tretonin... and there will soon be Tok'ra younglings who I would prefer have a more natural experience. While they may yet grow in tanks, I would feel uncomfortable with them growing in such an environment for certain reasons... and while I would prefer not to elaborate on them, I will if you feel the need to ask."

The leader of the current Jaffa forces on base, just... sort of stares at you.

"Why?" He asks. "Beyond the obvious reason of trying to strengthen our alliance... why?"

"Tretonin... as you may or may not be aware," you begin, tiredly. "I was held captive on the planet they produced it on. The Tok'ra I was forced to breed were ground up into the original form of the element. While we can synthesize the element now without such sacrifice... the idea of forcing the next generations of Tok'ra to grow up inside tanks is displeasing to me on many levels. Those are concerns I may not ever truely get over for some years to come."

"...That's perfectly understandable," the Jaffa nods. "I... I will have to speak with the other Jaffa about this." He pauses, then adds, "I'm not sure it will do much good, however. I'm very sorry to hear that your own people trust you as little as mine trust some of our own leaders. I didn't hear about the attempted raid that went south until just a few hours ago, myself. We are all so fractured internally..." He shakes his head. "This entire fiasco has been one mess after another."

"Agreed," you say. "It has been such a mess... However..." you give a smile. "I'm hoping that just because both of our sides made mistakes on this doesn't mean it to be a death knell to our alliance as it may have otherwise been."

"While a pause in active missions may be wisely recommended for both of our sides..." The Jaffa nods. "We should not let this event be a killing blow."


 

If TRACE knew one thing and knew it well, it was that the past hurt.

Like, here, look at this past trail of this bastard! Stupid Kull Warrior's got a trail that's about to go cold in the middle of a small crater.

Of course, the dead body itself lay on the ground a few meters away, next to the wreckage of a small metal airplane.

Trace stupidly wondered just what that meant when,  mere moments later, he spotted a glimpse of another person's past trail next to some rubble that provided the answer to the question he had not yet asked.

The past trail of an explosion erupted on the spot the crater had been centered on, and the explosion's past trail similarly exploded through Trace's body in the present... or rather, that is to say, the Future. Because, that is to say...


 

Hours in the Past, Major Carter, on the run from the Kull Warrior chasing her, witnessed a UAV being shot down and crash down into the ground nearby- shot by that very same Kull Warrior.

She would hurry over, check the wreckage and find it mounted with a rocket launcher. Some jurryrigging and rearrangements of angles later...

And when the Kull Warrior came into sight, she fired the rocket straight into it.

KABOOM.

Carter sits and waits, watching to see if the Kull Warrior had survived.

About a minute later, the Kull Warrior starts to rise up from the craterized ground.

Carter shoots at it with the improperly calibrated Anti-Kull Warrior weapon.

It doesn't fall, but it does stumble.

Then O'neill and Teal'c show up and O'neill has the crystal with the proper calibration settings on it and when placed into the weapon the Kull Warrior falls after two shots and it stays dead.

"Carter, you okay?" O'neill asks as he goes to check on Carter.

"No," Carter breathes out. "Jolinar's been unconscious since the base exploded. I- I'm worried she's not going to make it."

"Let's get you out of here, then," O'neill says.

He and Teal'c then help carry Major Carter over towards the perimeter of the clearing where Jonas and Major Vantas were waiting- and apparently busy in the mean time, because O'neill finds the two of them standing over yet another dead FELT member.

The "14" on the hat indicates that the one called Quarters met an unfortunate end.

"I'm not even going to ask," O'neill says with a grunt.

"Wise answer," Vantas answers.


 

Your name is Major Karkat Vantas, and you feel on edge as you and Jonas scurry back to the Gate's remote dial DHD that was brought through earlier.
 
Getting the drop on Quarters of all Felt was brilliant and disappointing all at the same time- dude went to flip a coin to summon backup and realized that he somehow had his own damned coin.

The look of horror on his face as he yelled out an angered "CLOVER!" before he fell over dead was cathartic, and yet... worrisome.

Apparently Quarters couldn't flip his own damned coin without killing himself. Clover had to have swapped out the coins relatively recently, which meant the slimey little bastard was still around somewhere.

As you take up a guarding position by the Gate and Jonas starts dialing the laptop-based, naquadah generator powered DHD, you're on edge for the rest of the Felt- especially Clover.

The WAA WAA KAWOOOSH occurs soon, and you try not to even flinch as the energy wave brushes past you with a few good inches of clearance. Half a foot, maybe?

Doesn't matter.

Part of you has always wondered what exactly the Kawoosh is. Then, your dumb idiot tween self asked Doctor Ohphee and she answered that, intentionally or not, it was essentially the Gate's way of clearing obstacles out from infront of itself for proper usage on both ends. It literally was the same demolecularization field that took apart matter in normal usage, but exploded outwards.

You'd then asked if anything would be stored in the Gate's buffer, then. Would an outgoing wormhole, consuming matter, then transmit that matter through a wormhole?

Interestingly, Callie had replied, it could possibly do such, but was generally programmed Not To Do That because the vortexes on the other end would consume and then delete most matter from the buffers, because it could not transfer that matter in the other direction.

So rather than give the impression of false hope that stepping through an opening vortex could possibly transmit you to the other side all the time... the Gates just were programmed Not To Do That period.

Your past self hasn't yet asked that question yet, amusingly. He would soon, though.

O'neill, Teal'c and Carter come moving from the edge of the forest's cratered edge, while Jonas sends the IDC and radios ahead.

They all head through the Gate soon after, and you close out the rear, moving to-

You hesitate, hearing some giggling.

You glance about the area, frowning as you spot that danged MALP that was missing earlier.

It's been moved upright, and it's- just- been painted a garish shade of green.

Dancing ontop of it is the tiniest little felt person you've ever seen.

"4" reads his hat- marking him CLOVER.

Clover draws a gun.

You dive through the gate as he fires, knowing that the shot will miss hitting the naquadria reactor by a mile, but instead seems to hit the dialing computer instead.

You know this because you tumble out of the gate right as the eventhorizon shuts down in a sudden jolting keen that shouldn't happen normally on this end.

"What was that?" Jonas asks.

"Clover shot at me," you gripe. "It's lucky for him he missed."

"Why's that?" Jonas asks.

"'Cause then I'd have skinned the bastard alive and made a new pillow out of his plush skin," you growl out.

"Good to know," Jonas answers with a nod.


 

EARTH DATE: OCTOBER 20TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 04/30/0004.

Your name is Jolinar, and you slowly resurface back to the world of the living during an interview between Major Carter and Emmett Bregman, in the middle of the SGC control room.

"Now interestingly about our version of the dialing computer," Sam is talking to the camera. "Our Gate draws in a slightly on average higher power draw than from DHDs, or our remotely powered replacement DHDs with Naquadria generators. We've even done experiments to see why that is, if it's some flaw in the Gate itself or-"

And then she stops as she notices you're awake. 'Jolinar??'

[Hi, Sam. I feel tired. What did I miss?] you ask.

"Major Carter?" Bregman asks. "Is everything alright?"

"Can we pause for a few minutes?" Sam asks, and gets a nod in return. "Jolinar just woke up."

"Of course," he smiles, nods, and signals for the camera to turn away. "We'll just get some establishing shots of the equipment for the moment."

"Thank you," Sam says, and then hurries to the Infirmary while telling you everything that you've missed out on.

...It's quite a doozy of a story. [I'm sorry I gave you such a scare, Sam.]

'I'm just glad you're back safe and sound.' And then she gives you the mental equivalent of a hug and you go get a check-up with Doctor Fraiser and nurse Ka'turnal.

Everything would be alright.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: NOVEMBER 20TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 06/01/0004.

"Okay, zoom in a bit more on the Gate there... Yes, like that. See how they're opening and closing the Chevron for cleaning it? Just get a few shots of that at some varying angles for a bit."

"Mister Bregman, can I speak with you for a minute?" General Hammond asks.

"Oh, right, yes," the man says, his reflection in the window nodding, then he heads off screen out of camera view, but not out of microphone range. "What is it, General?"

"With the election just around the corner, and your Presidentialy mandated tenure here at the SGC coming to a close, I'd like to offer you an opportunity," Hammond says. "As we're both well aware, changes are coming that we might not all be appreciative of, if certain people get into power. So, I would like to request, and hire you on as an outside contractor to record the transition period between Administrations."

"That's... an interesting concept, Sir. Maybe we should discuss this more in your office?"

And so the camera continued rolling on the Stargate Chevron opening and closing as a man on a step ladder cleaned the mechanism.


 

"Let's see now..." Janet Fraiser began reciting over the injuries list. "Over the last month, we got about fifteen cases of slightly twisted ankles due to people running in the hallways despite being grown ass adults who know better." She affixes the camera with a knowing gaze, and amends, "And that's Without an ongoing emergency to respond to, I might add." She returns to reading, "At least ten cases of bumped heads or sprained wrists related to that aforementioned hall running. Annnnd... Oh. Here's a Fun Statistic!" She smirks as she reads something on the paper, then quotes, "We've had at least five cases a day of people complaining of headaches since the new frozen slush drink machine was installed in the cafeteria. Said headaches are actually more related to the fact they're eating said frozen drinks with metal spoons rather than doing the sensible thing and drinking them with straws, and getting extreme cases of brain freeze because of it."

"Despite being a place of extreme importance," Bregman muses, "it seems that the SGC draws in all sorts of entertaining personalities."

"It does take a certain personality type to work here," Janet muses in turn. "But you'd think people would know better than to not be in a rush here on base when there aren't emergencies... or would know better than not eating their frozen drinks with metal spoons."


 

Teal'c sat quietly across from the camera.

Bregman likewise sat quietly across from him.

Neither said anything, what with this being somewhere along the lines of ten minutes into the silent interview.

Bregman had yet to realize Teal'c had simply fallen asleep with his eyes open.


 

"Have you ever considered Body Cameras for use while in the field?" Bregman asked of Jonas Quinn.

"We have, actually," Jonas answers. "Unfortunately we discovered that most modern body cameras tend to be: A, very expensive. B, they're pretty bulky, and kinda fragile, so C, they don't really fair well against, well.... most forms of Goa'uld technology?"

"Ah, yes, that would be fairly annoying, wouldn't it?"

"Honestly, we're just waiting for the scientists to make some lighter, sturdier cameras that can take a beating," Jonas answers. "In the meantime, we'll just deal with camcorders and after action reports."


 

"Head injuries are very frighteningly common," Janet lists off. "Just off the top of my head, Major Carter's suffered at least three recent major shocks or blows to the head that, while Jolinar has healed them fairly well, have both me, her, and Jolinar concerned over how frequently they happen. I've made sure to increase their leave time and mandated rest periods after each incident. Even if Jolinar can heal it, it's still a concern there may be damage building up neither of us are noticing just yet."

"What about Colonel O'neill?" Bregman asks. "How many times has he been hit on the head?"

"Ah, now that is an interesting question to answer," Janet raises a finger, "give me a minute and I'll fetch his files."

"Files?"

"There are many,"


 

"Colonel O'neill!" Bregman saunters over quickly to the Level 28 Elevator doors as Colonel O'neill emerges, absentmindedly sketching into a crossword puzzle.

"I like vanilla over chocolate," O'neill rants without even looking up, "My favorite color is peridot. I think Tibet should be free. My favorite breakfast food is oatmeal. My least favorite breakfast cereal is Fruit Loops. And if I could have dinner with anyone in the world, it'd be Mary Steenburgen."

"Uh, no, I'm not-" Bregman stops. "Wait, what? Mary Steenburgen?"

"I think she's nice," and with that O'neill continues on ahead.

"Wait!" Bregman races after him. "I'm just trying to schedule an interview-"

"I don't have time right now," O'neill answers.

"That's fine- Just- When is a good time for you?" Bregman asks.

"...Uh, any time." O'neill finally looks up. "Just, uh, send me a Memo, alright?"

"Right, okay," Bregman stops and turns to the camera man. "Wait. Memo? Didn't we send him one already?"


 

"So Kevlar will not stop the energy blast from a staff weapon itself, and other traditional armors will melt," Doctor Lee says in recap, fluently stating the monologue thanks to days of rehearsal. "But we've been developing a new sort of material after Cassandra Fraiser took a staff blast to her body and survived back on Abydos." He picks up a thin, black, plastic square, and holds it up to the camera. "This is a ceramic polymer which will resist the heat, stop the blast, and fits into a standard issue SG vest."

He then motions to Sergent Siler and, of all people, Major Strider, holding the very dangerous looking Staff Weapon.

"Sergent Siler will demonstrate tanking the hit, whiole Major Strider will demonstrate the weapon itself," Lee says.

"And before anyone asks, Kids!" Major Strider turns to look at the Camera, "Don't try this at home! We're professionals!"

And then without even looking back, he fires off a shot at Siler, which hits the man in the chest. Somewhat comically- it takes a second before Siler is flying backwards into a mat wall.

"Yeah!" Siler grunts as he gets back to his feet and starts brushing off the fire burning on his vest. "Totally Professionals."

"Don't worry about it," Lee says to the camera. "Siler does this all the time."


 

From the perspective of a handheld camera, the forest around P3X-666's Stargate can clearly be seen.

"Okay, Balinsky," Colonel Dixon asks, off screen, "Which way?"

"Uh.... That way," Balinsky says from off screen, even as the camera gets turned around to stare up at the Stargate

"Alright, I'll take point. Wells, Bosworth-" On the second name Dixon says, the camera jumps a bit. "Take rear guard. Five meter spread. Eyes open."

"The MALP showed no signs of any recent Goa'uld activity on this planet," Balinsky says, even as the camera gets hastily shoved into a pocket, barely able to see out of the fabric into the outside world.

"Yeah, and I don't see any indication of any signs of anything period happening here," Dixon remarks in turn. "Hell, the MALP's still all shiny and silver. Doesn't even have any mud on the treads yet."

"So, usual bets then, Sir?" Balinksy asks, stepping into view with a notebook in hand.

"Sure," Dixon answers. "Wells?"

"Abandoned Naquadah Mine, Sir," Wells says from off camera.

"Boring, but good odds. Bosworth?" Dixon asks.

"I'm going to say Money Trees, Sir!" Says the much louder voice of Bosworth, given he's the one who had the camera running.

"Bosworth's disqualified from the running for being a Smartass," Dixon quips. "Me, I'm gonna go with Conjoined Alternian Twins."

"Hostile or friendly?" Wells asks.

"One half friendly rebel, one half insane clown,"  Dixon answers, then, to Balinsky, he gives a hand motion.

"Oh, ancient city ruins." Balinsky answers. "As in, ANCIENT Ancient. Like. Ancients who built the Stargate Ancients. Not, like, ancient as in really really old. Though, those would count AS ancient Ancient ruins, but I'm just being specific here and-"

"Right, right, we get the point," Dixon scoffs. "Alright. Let's get moving."


 

"So, Colonel Dixon," Bregman begins. "You're a father of four, right?"

"That I am," Dixon grins. "Makes me glad to have the job that I do, every single day."

"Why's that?"

"Don't get me wrong, I love the little buggers to death, but, trust me. Having four Kids? That makes going through a Stargate and facing off against the bad guys look like nothing." he motions picking up a gun and aiming through its sights. "Taking the fight to them? That's my time off. The SGC is like my relaxing hobby." he puts the air-gun down, and says. "The real war is at home. Nuclear Diapers. Projectile Vomiting. That's why they make them so damn cute. You just can't stay mad at those little faces! And their cute little button eyes and- well. Yeah."

"Why have four then?" Bregman asks.

"Well, one's pretty bad, but you figure you gotta have two, so the little guy could have a brother or sister, right?" Dixon pauses. "Then you have two boys, and the wife says she wants a girl. So you figure, 'Hell, three can't be much worse than two,' right?" He shakes his head, "What you don't realize is, your brain is fried because you haven't slept. And then after three, four is no big deal. You're so deep in it, nothing seems to matter anymore. It's chaos. You just try to make through each day alive. In the end, you spend all the energy you have left trying to get 'em into bed. Only to lie awake, praying they don't get hooked on drugs, hurt, or worse, wind up dead in an alley somewhere."


 

The dialogue fades with a cross cut edit into Dixon saying very similar as the rest of his team march through the forest.

"Can't wait, Sir," Wells says once Dixon finishes.

"Yeah, miracle of birth my ass. I'll tell you what a miracle is!" He scoffs. "Birth control that wor-"

He stops as they enter a clearing.

All of SG-13 stops dead.

"Well," Dixon quips, "I'll be damned."

"I win!" Balinsky says, stepping into view, even as Bosworth retrieves the camera from his pocket to aim at the clearing ahead of them- filled with very clearly ANCIENT RUINS.


 

The camera catches a scene of Colonel O'neill being approached by Major Carter at a coffee machine in the Control Room.

"Did you do an interview yet, Sir?" Carter asks.

O'neill takes a pointed pause to drink from his coffee- recoils for a moment, sniffs at it... then shrugs and continues drinking it. Once he's done that, he says, "Think so?"

"Mary Steenburgen?" Carter asks.

"Hey, she's hot," O'neill answers. "Everyone's allowed to have their one Celebrity exception. Right?"

Carter laughs, and they start heading up the stairs to the Conference room.

The Camera follows them, picking up the following.

"Did you hear? We're nearing the thousandth trip through the Stargate," Carter informs the Colonel.

"Only One Thousand, you say?" O'neill asks.

"I know, hard to believe we've been at it this long," Carter answers.

"No, I mean, I thought for sure we'd done something like two thousand already," O'neill answers.

"Nope, not yet," Carter says.

"Huh. Guess we should get a cake or something," O'neill decides.


 

"Oh? Wells?" Nurse Ka'turnal smiles. "Yes, I thought it wonderful news when I heard it. I sent them a traditional care package made up of traditional care packages from various cultures I've encountered over the years. I also plan on sending a cake when the baby arrives."

"That's nice of you," Bregman remarks.

"Well, I am likely to never be the child's primary physician for obvious reasons," she coughs politely. "But I'm still going to offer advice, assistance, and help where I can. Some cultures I've studied, some like Cassandra's home planet of Hanka especially, have had some very unique ideas about child rearing. I picked the most complimentary and best ideas from them all. Admittedly, I put a few more ideas from Cassandra's home world into there than some others."

"Why's that?" Bregman asks.

"There are so few people of that world left alive," Ka'turnal's eyes seem to become unfocused, as if she's staring at something not there for a moment. "I'd like to do what I can to ensure its culture survives, to some degree or another." She shakes her head, then says, "I've actually traded notes with Cassandra on that front since Penny was born. We've both been filling in gaps the other was unaware of, in that regard."

"I can relate to that sentiment, as a documentary producer, and form of historian," Bregman says. "I suppose though, that it's a bit more personal for you both."

"Indeed it is," Ka'turnal agrees.


 

Bosworth's camera is focused on an ultrasound.

"It looks like an alien," Bosworth remarks.

"Shut up," Wells chuckles.

"Hey, you remember that thing we ran into on P2X-787?" Bosworth asks.

"Get lost, man," Wells remarks, taking the picture back.

"Yeah, see, that thing was easy on the eyes by comparison," Bosworth says, tilting the camera to follow as Dixon takes the photo from wells.

"...Let me see that," Dixon pauses. "Uh, yeah, it's scary, Wells."

"It's my unborn son, sir," Wells says.

Dixon studies the picture for a moment, then eyes Wells. "Who told you that?"

"The doctor," Wells answers. Then, he points at a part of the picture. "That right there, they said, proves its a boy."

Dixon studies the picture a bit more closely, then laughs. "Wells, don't go painting the room blue just yet. I'm pretty sure that doctor doesn't know a boy's parts from a girl's."

"What? What do you mean by that?" Wells asks, taking the picture back to look.

Dixon's response is cut short as Balinsky comes running over, frantically yelling- "TAKE COVER!!"


 

Senator Kinsey sits before the camera, ranting about this or that, but muted, as Bregman narrates over him.

"At the time of filming this particular day of the Documentary, then Senator Robert Kinsey arrived and gave a flowery speech about the youth of tomorrow. He went on for about twenty minutes with this speach. I was about five minutes into it before I realized it was just a modified version of one he'd given in a recent press conference where he was trying to sell, at the last minute, his position as Vice President of the United States to the public. I tuned it out after that."

There's a pause, as the video itself freezes solid.

"There's an irony in the fact that the breaking news that surfaced a few months later after the inauguration would make me want to cut this entire segment entirely. Instead, just know this. Robert Kinsey's kind and flowery words here were just as much of a front as any other facet of his public facing persona. His open detest for the management of the SGC seen by me and others in private surrounding this visit was obvious, and it's only to ensure that those scenes are seen with context of his visit that I'm even including this brief snipit in this part of the documentary."

The video cuts to black.

"Kinsey didn't care about the disaster about to unfold beyond how it could help him achieve his own goals.... Also. He refused a candid interview. The bastard."


 

SG-13's camera cuts back into view- pointing at the remains of a shattered probe droid of some sort, buried beneath a wall of rubble of a toppled wall.

"-is it dead? Because it looks dead," Dixon is saying as the camera turns on.

"I dunno," Balinsky says. "It's sparking. I think that means its dead."

"We DID drop a wall on it," Wells says. "Maybe it's- Wait. Is that a MALP Camera inside this thing??"

"..That it is," Balinsky remarks. "I guess now we know what happened to that MALP we lost from the Alpha Site."

"We should report this back to the SGC," Bosworth suggests.

"Yeah," Dixon nods in agreement. "Wells, Bosworth, keep guard. Balinsky and me will head back to the Gate and report back."


 

Senator Kinsey barges into the SGC caffeteria, "Ah! Colonel O'neill!" He grins brightly as he enters the room, spotting his target, either unknowing or caring about the cameras being set up to perform a brief interview with the Colonel. "I'm sure you've heard, I'm going to be a part of this little documentary they're putting together to shine the spotlight on all the goings on at the SGC."

There's a brief flash of text across the screen for but a fraction of a second that would be missed unless someone paused, reading "Yeah, Right!"

"No, I did NOT know that," O'neill doesn't even look up from his current crossword puzzle.

"Er-... uh..." Kinsey falters. "Well, I'm sure there was a memo."

O'neill locks eyes with the camera, and it pauses, as Bregman states for the record via the magic of editing, "There was, in fact, no memo about Senator Kinsey's rather surprise appearance. Especially considering he wasn't even supposed to be in Colorado that day. What did he know? That's a question for some other day."

The video resumes, and O'neill gets up from his table. "Well, did you tell them about the numerous times you tried to get this place shut down? Or what about the time you had Hammond by the short-"

"I suggest you watch what you Say, COLONEL," Kinsey interjects, growling in a low, threatening voice. "Slander is a serious offense, especially to the soon to be Vice President of the United States."

O'neill dryly remarks, "Yes, so I hear."

Kinsey glances at the cameras, seemingly noticing them for the first time, and says, a bit more confidently. "I have always been a strong supporter of this program. I admit I was critical in the past, but that was only because of the unrealized potential I see this operation as having." He pauses, then asks, friendily, "How did your interview go, Colonel?"

"Oh, you know, short, sweet..." O'neill frowns. "Interrupted by you coming in to gloat." Kinsey goes to say more, but O'neill continues. "What are you doing here, Kinsey? Last anyone checked you were trying to discredit us, and are presently trying to discredit the President who *ordered* this little documentary," he motions at the cameras. "So... really. What's the point?"

One of the other cameras takes perspective, tilting around the Cafeteria, focusing on evreyone there- watching with full attention on the altercation going on.

Back to the main camera, Kinsey says, "His term is up. My running mate and I are merely pointing out to the American people certain areas that we think we can do a better job in. And when that time comes…I know we can count on your vote, Colonel."

O'neill scoffs, and sarcastically says, "Yeah, that'll happen."

Kinsey doesn't seem to get it, and smiles brightly, saying. "I knew I could count on you. And I just want you to know, Colonel, if elected. I can make this Program great. It will have my FULL support. You can count on that."

O'neill considers his words for a moment, then looks to Bregman and asks, "Is my mic on? I want to make sure you get this."

Bregman does a check, and gives a thumbs up.

O'neill then rants: "You smarmy, self-righteous, opportunistic, ass kissing, foot licking, son of a bitch! The day you get your hands on the Stargate program is the day you'll run us headlong up Anubis' skirts and down English's throat!"

As O'neill starts to go on more, the OFFWORLD ACTIVATION alarms go off, but thanks to the handy placement of a microphone on O'neill's jacket, every word that follows comes through just the same.

"Now, see here, Kinsey. I don't care what the hell you think your game is, but you're treading a lot of lines I thought we made perfectly clear not to cross," O'neill continues, "and if you think even for a *moment* that we're just going to roll over, expose our bellies, and wait for some tummy rubs- then you've got a whole other thing coming!"

O'neill wants to go to say more, but his name is called to the Control room.

He scowls at Kinsey, who, angry and fuming, points out, "Duty Calls."

"Yeah, I was done anyways," O'neill says. He smiles, apologetically to Bregman, "Reschedule?"


 

"Major Carter, may I ask you a personal question?" Bregman asks in the setting of Carter's office.

"Sure," she says.

"What are your personal feelings towards Colonel O'neill?" Bregman asks. "How do you feel about him as a person, and as a leader?"

Carter smiles. "He's an amazing man. After everything we've done, and he's done personally, he's still modest. He... He likes people to think he's not as smart as he is, but, we all know that behind that happy go lucky attitude is a razor sharp wit ready to tear to shreds anyone who gets on his bad side."

Jolinar chimes in with, "Being inside his head for a short time, I can add with this experience: Anger the Colonel at your own risk. If he's angry at you, you should know you've crossed the wrong line... Possibly for the final time."

"Do you two spend a lot of time together outside of work?" Bregman asks.

"We don't get much time outside of the SGC for free time. When we do, our personal interests take precedence. When we're off duty on base at the same time, as a team, we do hang out a bit from time to time. And, outside of that... well... Our personal interests tend to not mesh well, some times."

"Ever heard of the expression, 'opposites attract'?" Bregman asks. "After all, your cloned selves have gotten quite close, I've heard, being hosts to the other Jolinar and Lantash, who are mates."

"What our clones do shouldn't reflect on us," Carter says. "After all, they've made the decision to go on different paths from ourselves. I've heard the other me's taken up dancing recently. I never had the talent for it, honestly. And even if, and I'm not saying there is, on some level if Colonel O'neill and I did have some sort of romantic inclinations towards eachother..." She says, "We wouldn't risk our professional relationship as coworkers or as friends like that while we're working together at the SGC. The job here at the SGC doesn't allow that- military positions aside."

"Alternia's culture seems to favor romantic bonds among its Gate Program staff," Bregman observes.

"And this is Earth, not Alternia," Major Carter quickly points out. "Alternia's Galaxy has been, even with the recent upheavals, much more stable comparatively to our galaxy. The fact that Khepri was unable to impart the same sort of fierce, devoted loyalty, even in death, towards the stability of an empire says a lot about how unstable the Goa'uld are in comparison." She pauses, and says, "Plus, Alternian Physiology is a lot more sturdy and redundant than humans are. A troll can take a staff blast to the chest, and keep going for hours, while the same kind of wound can, and has in some observed cases, kill even a Goa'uld System Lord."


 

Bosworth's camera continues to record as he and Wells walk down a forest path. The camera is much better fixated in an upper vest pocket so as to see ahead. Wells is a bit ahead of Bosworth.

"Wells, Bosworth," Dixon radios.

"Wells here," Wells answers.

"Bring it home, boys, we're booking out," Dixon orders. "SGC doesn't want to take the risk that the probe sent out a distress signal."

"Roger that, Wells out," Wells says.

"It's about damn time," Bosworth remarks.

PCHOOO!

And then Wells takes a staff blast to the back of his chest.

"TAKING FIRE! REPEAT, WE ARE TAKING FIRE!" Bosworth yells, swinging around to fire back with his P90 in the direction the shot came from. "WELLS IS HIT!"


 

"Okay, three gunshot wounds. Four staff weapon burns," Fraiser reads off the list "Nanite technology artificially aged him…He had his shoulder punctured by an alien time capsule device. Um, three knee operations." She coughs, placing a folder aside, and grabbing a new one to scan it... "Oh. That's the whole Hathor Incident which pretty much the entire base's Male population has asked me to never discuss." She sets it aside, grabbing a new folder. "Oh, and here's a good one. Last year or so, he was exposed to an Ancient, Incurable Disease."

"Not totally incurable, right?" Bregman asks. "Otherwise Colonel O'neill would be dead."

"Jolinar volunteered to heal him," Janet answers. "He would have died if not for that."

"Ah," Bregman nods. "It must be overwhelming, right?

"I never know what's next," she says. "Sometimes you just have to try and keep your head on straight..." Janet pauses, then adds, "Also, set a lot of broken bones and prescribe a ton of antibiotics...." She laughs. "It's funny, you know? You think with all the training, everything we know about medicine here on earth, and even with everything we know thanks to Alternia's own medicinal technology... plus the Ancients and the Goa'uld... Tok'ra... Tretonin..." She shakes her head. "It all amounts to very little. Honestly, the amount of times the doctors both here and in Alternia have faced situations that there are rarely any straight forwards answers to is astounding. Years ago, a girl had a volcano spit on her. Massive full body burns that she refused to heal even with a cheating, Furling tech bio crystal. Then she finally relented and now she walks around with flame tattoos everywhere on her body."

"That's.... a lot to take in."

"It is," Janet nods.

"Is there an upside?"

"Are you kidding?" Janet asks, smiling. "I think the reason we all manage to push on day after day is because we all feel that our knowledge base, and our wellspring of understanding just keeps growing and growing. We keep learning so much more about who we are, where we've come from, what the future has in store, how we fit into the grand scheme of things--" She takes a minute, composing her thoughts. "It's-"

Then, the Base Intercom blares out:

"CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICERS, REQUESTED IN CONFERENCE ROOM!"

"Duty calls," Janet smiles at the camera even as Ka'turnal rushes around in the background, packing up her gear immediately.

"Do you think something's gone wrong?" Bregman asks.

"You never can tell until you're brought in," Janet says, standing up, and quickly stepping back away from Carolyn Lam as she rushes past her. "Hopefully we can continue this later."

"Hopefully," Bregman nods.


 

Minutes later, Bregman's cameras caught sight of several SG-teams heading to the Stargate, SG-1 included, along with Doctors Fraiser and Lam, plus Ka'turnal and three other nurses, all geared up to head through the gate.

"What's going on?" Bregman asked.

"Later!" Janet answers with a bark. "There's no time right now!"

And so they left through the Stargate but a minute later, the visuals transition to Bremgan pacing in the hallway as he narrates:

"I would continue to sit and wait until the teams returned. And thirty minutes later, return they did, but with injured. Atleast five crash carts were brought back to the Gate from the infirmary and then quickly returned with people on them." He pauses. "They went by too fast for my camera crew to get any shots of who was on each one, but at least one person had a cloth over their face and a hand dragging limply to the side- feminine."

Blurred still shots of that one cart being pushed past through the hallway fade onto screen, one after the other.

"I suddenly had a very bad sinking feeling in my gut. And later on, it'd be confirmed: someone had died on that mission."

And then the video cuts to black- probably for a commercial break at the hour mark if this were aired on TV. All that would be missing was a "TO BE CONTINUED" if this weren't just about to be continued minutes later.

The poor fools whose VCRs failed to record the next part and had to wait on reruns, though.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: NOVEMBER 21ST, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 06/02/0004.

"It's been said," Doctor Jackson narrates for the camera, "in Ancient Egypt, Cobras were signs of protective spirits. Their statues guarded the entrances to tombs, and followed the Pharaohs in the wall art. I suppose in some sense that was the Goa'uld trying to make it so that if their symbiotes were seen following someone around they wouldn't panic. But on the other hand, maybe that was Egeria's doing, laying the groundwork for the Tok'ra to be seen as guardians?" He pauses, then says, "Either way, there's a bit of cruel irony in what happened earlier today."

Your name is Emmett Bregman, and you pause the interview there. You take a moment to breathe,  and run your hand through your hair.

You rewind it to "what happened" and stop it there, making a digital mark in the editing program to ensure that the file remembers to cut there in the raw edit.

You look at the time. Early, but late enough to get breakfast.

Your stomach grumbles, confirming that fact, and with that, you save your work, get up, and head for the cafeteria.

The SGC is subdued as you walk, mumbling to yourself as you try to parse edits you're going to make inside your head.

As you arrive in the Cafeteria, you find that Jude and Cassandra have arrived at some point and are pecking away at their own breakfasts.

"Hey," you tiredly greet them. "How are you two holding up?"

Cassandra doesn't seem to want to speak- understandable given the circumstances- but Jude gives a smile, and says, "About as well as can be considered."

"Yeah," You say. "Same here."

And with that, you go to get breakfast from one Dirk Strider, who seems to be about the only person on base not stuck in worry mode.

"Did you hear?" He asks as he loads a few waffles onto your tray. "They're sending some NID Oversight guy down to investigate what happened."

"Oversight?" You ask. "What for?"

"Kinsey's out for Hammond's blood," Dirk answers, pouring a lot of syrup onto your waffles. "Bastard couldn't even wait for the body to cool."

"What do you know about this guy they're sending?" You ask.

From behind his ridiculous indoors shades, he affixes you with a stern gaze. "I ran into this guy they're sending- once. Back when I used to work in Texas. He got sent in to investigate one of my rival DJs- Turns out my rival was working for the Russian Mafia. Anyways, I got interviewed to figure out what I knew. Dude's a hardass. Cold hearted bastard on the best of days, I'd say."  He pauses, then says, "His name is Richard Woolsey."


 

o<--STARGATE SG-1-->o


 

"I've reached out to Agent Barrett," Strider reports.

Your name is General George Hammond, and you nod grimly. "And of Woolsey?"

"He's clean. Sharp as they come. An MBA and LLB from Harvard. Lead counsel for the Army Corps of Engineers for ten years, later sat on the Defense Policy Board. Worked the occasional job here or there investigating some Russian Mob ties, off the books, though. Only managed to dig that up 'cause Dirk mentioned it to me and I mentioned it to Barrett." A pause, "He was asked to resign last year when it was disclosed that he had financial ties to a large corporation that had been awarded over $800 million in private sector defense contracts by the Pentagon. He's been with the NID since then."

"Is there anything else?" you ask.

"Barrett faxed me this internal NID memo Woolsey recently wrote. I think you should read it," Strider hands over a folder.

You frown upon reading it.

"I see," you say. "We might be able to use this. Kinsey may have pulled the trigger on Woolsey coming here, but he doesn't own his leash."

"What should I do then, Sir?" Strider asks.

"Tell SG-1 to tell the truth about what happened," you say. "And let Mister Woolsey in as you leave."

"Aye, Sir," Strider nods grimly, and then opens the door to your office. "Yo, Wool-eyes, you can head in now."

And as Strider leaves, Richard Woolsey enters. He's an imposing man. He looks vaguely like a War Doctor who had seen it all, and come out the other side with a frozen heart. His business suit was pressed and steam cleaned and narry a wrinkle could be seen on it.

You can feel the end of your tenure here at the SGC embodied in the gaze peering out from behind the man's glasses. If not now, then after the new administration takes hold- whoever the election proves out as the victor.

You're going to go down swinging, and maybe bring a few corrupt individuals down with you, if you can.

"You screwed up for the last time, Hammond," Woolsey says, firmly, possibly believing everything Kinsey's told him.

"I beg to differ," you reply. "I saved lives."

"Four Assets were critically injured, One Asset was Fatally Wounded," Woolsey counters. "Those injuries and that death are on your hands for authorizing that rescue mission!"

"And if I'd done nothing, we'd have four missing SG-team members, possibly tortured or dead," You counter his counter. "You seem to think that this one death outweighs FOUR! Injuries heal, Mister Woolsey."

"A chief member of the Medical Staff is DEAD," Woolsey snarls at you, showing the first bit of emotion you've seen out of him since he arrived in your office. "Heads will roll, Hammond. And yours is on the chopping block first and foremost."

"We'll see about that," you say, rising from your chair to meet his eyes. "Now, I believe you had interviews to conduct?"

"Indeed I do." And with that, Richard Woolsey turns to leave.


 

"Major Samantha Carter... Tell me, what exactly happened out there?" Woolsey asks.

"It's in the report," Carter tiredly replies.

"Reports are sanitized," Woolsey says. "Tell me in out loud."


 

Teal'c sits silently across from Woolsey.

"I have all day," Woolsey says conversationally. "We won't leave until you tell me what happened."




"Hammond ordered SG-13 to return through the Gate after they destroyed the probe device," Jonas begins. "They were attacked just seconds after the order was given. Wells was shot in the back. Hammond organized a rescue mission and we went through."




"We emerged through the gate," Carter recounts. "The medical team went to find Wells and Bosworth, the rest of us stayed to hold the Gate and keep it open for them to return. We were supposed to be in and out."




"The Medical Team found Wells and Bosworth and began working to stabilize Wells," Teal'c summarizes. "Our position at the Gate became compromised soon after."




"We came under fire," Jonas says. "Lone Jaffa. Probably lost in the woods or searching for trouble. He shot at Doctor Fraiser, me and Bosworth shot him dead. We stabilized Wells and got him out of there. That's it."




"Colonel O'neill and Colonel Dixon took hits," Carter finishes. "Jonas's team got Wells stabilized and to the gate, I ordered an evacuation back to the SGC."




"Thank you for your time," Woolsey concludes his interviews.


 

"Hey," Bosworth says as he enters the infirmary.

"Hey yourself," Wells smiles. "You get cleared?"

"Just pulled a muscle and strained my wrist firing my P90 wrong," Bosworth holds up his bandaged wrist. "Nurse said I should be good with a little bit of rest."

"What about Dixon?" Wells asks.

"Out of surgery," Bosworth answers. "Doc Lam says he's going to make it."

"That's good. But what about Janet?" Wells asks.

"Still in surgery," Bosworth answers, a bit grimly.


 

"Gaah!" Your name is Colonel O'neill, and you wince slightly as you pull your shirt back on over your sore abdomen. "Stupid staff blasts." You glance at a harrowed, still nervous Carter, and remark, "You know, as NICE as it was having a little ceramic plate to absorb a staff blast point blank like that- we really need to work on the recoil on those things. I think that hurt me more than the staff blast did."

"Heh... yeah..." Carter says, voice laiden with a mix of relief and concern.

"Worried about Janet?" You ask.

"Can't not be," she answers. "I know she's in good hands, but..." She looks you in the eyes, and says, "We almost lost her, Jack. We almost lost Dixon, and Wells... We almost lost you."

"Sam," you open your arms out. "C'mere."

She comes over and lets you hug her. You manage to contain the wince that comes when she jostles your bruised stomach as she tries to restrain her own sobs.


 

Your name is Emmett Bregman, and you look up from your editing as someone knocks on the edge of your opened office door.

"Hey, uh... you busy, Docu-guy?" asks one Jake Bosworth as he hovers in the doorway.

"Not as busy as I'd like to be, no," you say, running your hands over your face. "I can't focus on editing." You turn in your chair to look at him. "What can I do for you, Bosworth?"

"I asked Wells, Balinksy, and Dixon if it's alright if I give you this," and then he holds up a blood stained camera.

"...Is that-?" You stare at it.

"I was recording the entire mission," he says, offering it to you. "For the documentary. People need to see what happened."

"Shouldn't this-?" you hesitate in reaching for it.

"Be in the report?" Bosworth laughs, tiredly. "Yeah, but I've already copied it for SGC records. I want you to have the original. Just in case."

"...Thank you," you say, taking the camera. "I'll make sure it's in there, somehow."

A few minutes later, you've plopped the tape into your reviewer, and are watching what happened on P3X-666.

Everything up until Wells got shot is stuff you'd heard in passing- you can use this footage for sure to help set up the narrative of what happened yesterday more clearly than not. Footage like this is... it's a gold mine to people in your line of work.

...And then you get to the dreadful moment.


 

The camera lays on its side, pointing at Bosworth as he guards Wells- who is lying on his stomach, a blood soaked wound visible on his back.

"You're gonna be all right, Simon. Hang in there, all right, buddy? You'll be home before you know it."

An explosion happens in the distance, and Bosworth looks up- "Oh thank God! HERE! OVER HERE!" He waves. "MAN DOWN OVER HERE!"

Jonas Quinn, Janet Fraiser, Ka'turnal, and Carolyn Lam come rushing over into view.

"Right here!" Bosworth says, moving to take a better covering position. "There's a lot of blood coming from underneath him. I'll cover you up on this ridge!" Jonas moves to follow him off camera.

Janet and Carolyn drop their packs and begin unpacking supplies.

"Wells, we're here. It's me, Doctor Fraiser," Janet speaks to the man as she gets to patching his back wound. "Can you hear me?"

"Y-yeah," Wells says, in pain. "It hurts so ba-bad. Can't mh-move. Feel my legs. Nothing." He gasps. "I think it went right through me!"

"He's lucky he's alive," Ka'turnal remarks, observing the wound. "This shot should have killed him. I have no idea how he's survived it."

"Nnnh- I'm going to die??" Wells asks.

"No, Simon, not if we have anything to say about it," Caroyln says to him. "We'll get you fixed up and out of here."

"Okay, I've patched the back," Janet says. "We need to roll him over, stop the bleeding on the front." She looks to Ka'turnal. "On three?"

The former Goa'uld geneticist nods, and on three, they work together to turn Wells over as quickly and safely as they can. Wells screams in pain, and Ka'turnal strips off her jacket to roll up and put under his neck to soften it.

"Gaaah! FUCKING JAFFA!" Wells cries out. "Sonavabitch! Shot me in the back! Gaaah! No no no! I can't die!!"

"Simon, focus on something else," Ka'turnal says. "Your home life. You've got to get back to them, right?"

"R-Right-" Wells whimpers. "My wife- she's pregnant. Our first- Oh godOHGOD- No I don't want to diAAARRGH!" he screams as Janet touches the wound on his front.

"Okay, that's good," Janet says. "You felt it, that's a good sign, Simon!"

The radio buzzes with chatter over the sound of distant gunfire.

"Colonel O'Neill, our position is being compromised! We're not gonna to be able to hold the Gate for long!"

"It doesn't matter. We're not gonna be able to hold this position for that long!" O'neill answers.

"Colonel, I need more time to stabilize Wells. He can't be moved yet!" Fraiser says into the radio.

"Sir, we've gotta fall back!" Carter's voice echoes- then, sharply, "SIR!!"

"Man Down! Man Down!" Dixon's voice calls out. "Get him under cover!!"

Everyone goes silent for a moment, then Wells starts panicking- "Nonono! I'm gonna die, I'm not going to see my son! My Wife- N-NO!" He cries out. "I'll never- I'll never tell her-!"

And then Bosworth voices- "Camera! My camera's on the ground!"

Caroyln whirls around, and grabs the camera, muttering, "Oh God, it's already recording." Then, she fixes it on Wells' face.

"Breathe, Simon," Caroyln says. "Just tell your wife what you need to say."

"I-" He swallows.

Over the Radio, there's a sudden yell- "Colonel Dixon's Down!"

Wells' eyes tears up, and his voice wobbles. "I--"


 

"General?" Woolsey looks up as you place a report on his borrowed office desk.

"I've prepared my written testimony," you inform him.

Woolsey opens the report. "Your mission report?"

"I thought I'd kill two birds with one stone," you say.

"Well," Woolsey says, dryly. "I guess I'm done, then."

"You're leaving?" You ask.

"The President will have my Preliminary Report by the end of the week," he says.

"I'm sure it will be every bit as interesting as your memo on the economics of the SGC," you say.

Woolsey looks up at you, shocked. "How did you- No. I won't even bother asking how."

"What was that dollar value you attributed to an average SG team member?" You ask.

"You know damn well I wasn't pegging the value of a person's life. It is a cold, hard fact that it costs millions of dollars to train these men and women, and that is a fraction of the funds being subverted by the Pentagon for this operation." Woolsey stands from his chair, fixing his tie angrily. "I think it is reprehensible that the taxpayers of this country are paying enormous sums of money to wage a war they know nothing about, and are getting little, if anything, in return. If the Stargate's existence were public knowledge, and your actions were being judged in the court of public opinion—"

You interject- "You're the one suggesting that sending a rescue team worth $27 million to save the life of one man is a bad business decision."

Annoyed, Woolsey glares at you, "You're putting words in my mouth, Hammond."

"You said it in black and white, and I don't think you would dare do such a thing if this wasn't a classified operation." You pause, and say, "The President has asked a documentary team to get to the truth of what's going on around here, for public disclosure as the end goal. Why don't we just go down and give them the whole truth as you see it? Right now." Woolsey gathers his fires, and you glare at him with obvious disgust. "The only reason I haven't thrown you out on your ass personally is because I know you only wrote that memo to counteract the equally disturbing one Senator Kinsey filed not days before."

"Both of those Memos are Classified," Woolsey says. "This Investigation is classified. And if you so much as utter so much of a hint as either, I'll see you put away in a cold, dark place for the rest of time."

You scoff as the man turns to leave.

"What?" He asks, turning to glare at you in return.

"One day, Woolsey, you're going to find yourself in my shoes," you say, looking at him. "And you'll realize that looking at people as 'assets,' and assigning monetary values to them... it's nowhere as near clear cut as you think it is."

"I sincerely doubt that," Woolsey counters, disbelief obvious in his voice.

"People are people," you counter. "The value their lives have is in what they willingly give to others- NOT in known state secrets or in how much money went into training them. But mark my words, one day you'll be in my position, and you'll remember this conversation. I expect you to give me a phonecall when you do."

"And why would I do that?" Woolsey asks, "So you can gloat?"

"No, so you can understand where I'm coming from when I say I regret every life lost in the line of duty," you say, "and understand when I say that I value every life saved just as much, if not more so." And with that, you leave the office ahead of him.


 

"I-I'm so sorry!" Wells cries into the camera. "I love you so much- God, I-I just- I juust wanted-" He cries out in pain- "NO NO NO! SHUT IT OFF! I DON'T WANT HER TO SEE ME DIE! PLEASE! GOD! JUST-"

The camera shifts towards Janet, as she looks Wells in the eyes. "Simon! SImon! Look at me! You are not going to die, Okay??"

Wells calms down a bit.

"We did not come all the way out here for nothing," Janet says. "We've stemmed the Bleeding and we're going to get you on a stretcher. We're going to get you home with your family in no time, okay? Now hang in there, Airman!"

"Y-Yes Ma'am!!" Wells nods.

And then the view shakes suddenly as Ka'turnal leaps across the screen and shoves Janet to the ground. The camera barely catches sight of a flash of orange, but the sound it makes is unmistakable.

PCHOO!

A staff blast.

Two voices cry out in pain, and one goes deathly silent while the other moans yet still.

Gun fire and Zat shots race across the screen a moment later, and Bosworth cries out- "GOT HIM!"

"Oh- Oh god!" Carolyn drops the camera to the ground, showing from an upwards angle as she rolls Ka'turnal off of Janet. "Janet!"

"I- I'm ffff-fine!!! Worry about--!" Janet stops, crying out in pain.

"Wh- What happened!?" Wells asks. "Wha- Ka-- Is she dead!? Is she dead!?"

"Jonas! Get Wells on the stretcher!" Caroyln orders. "Bosworth, cover us!! Janet- Janet, are you okay??"

"NO! I'VE BEEN SHOT! What do you think, Lam!?" Janet cries out. "What about- Wha... Oh god."

Jonas radios, "Sierra Gulf Niner- Doctor Fraiser's been hit! Ka'turnal is down and unmoving!!"


 

Your name is Cassandra Fraiser, and you look up as your mother's clone, Missy Fraiser, enters the cafeteria, looking tired as hell.

"Hey," you get up and give her a hug. "How'd it go?"

"Felt weird giving myself a life saving Surgery, but-" She laughs a bit nervously as she hugs you back. "She's going to make it."

You can't help but sigh in relief, even considering the loss.

Nirrti... Ka'turnal... had died saving your mom's life.

You're not quite sure how you feel about that.


 

EARTH DATE: NOVEMBER 22ND, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 06/03/0004.

"Hello, Airman," Your name is Janet Fraiser, and one of the first things you see as you surface from a post-surgery drug induced nap is the sight of Simon Wells resting on a cot in the Infrmary next to you. "How are you feeling?"

"I should be asking you that, Doc," Wells says, glancing over at you. "I'm.... not fine, but I'll live."

"Mmh..." you close your eyes for a moment. Then- the memories resurface. "Oh- Oh god-" your eyes snap open. "Ka'turnal-"

"She died," Wells confirms. "She... she died because of me."

"No," you say. "She died because a Jaffa shot at me and she saved both of our lives..." You frown. "It was her job, just like it's mine and Carolyn's and... just like it's your job to go out there every day and risk it."

"...I can't make it feel right," Wells says.

You close your eyes. "No, it wasn't right. Nothing about it was right. But it wasn't your fault. It wasn't mine. It was that Jaffa who shot you first, in the back, like a coward." You open your eyes again and look Wells firmly in the eyes as best as you can. "Remember that, Simon."

"I will," he nods.


 

EARTH DATE: NOVEMBER 29TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 06/10/0004.

"Our armed forces have turned the tide of world wars," says Bregman's narration on this particular rough draft of the documentary. "Young men and women from our great country's four corners have humbled some of our Galaxy's worst tyrants. We carve our thanks in stone."

Photographs of SGC Teams flash across the screen, as Bregman's narration continues.

"We stamp it into medals. We carefully tend to vast fields where the men and women who gave their lives for our freedom now lay. More than ever in our history, we cannot fail to pass these stories of courage to the next generation. We must capture their imaginations while paying tribute to all those willing to die for the preservation of our way of life."

And on that closing note, the 'episode' ends with the briefing room window closing its blast door on the sight of the Stargate dialing.

With a click, Bregman ends the video, and turns to look at you. "Well, it's only a first draft, but what do you think?"

"Thank you, Emmett," you are George Hammond, still the General of the SGC. "It's a shame nobody's going to see it for a long while more. I'm not sure it really needs further editing."

"Really? You, uh, don't think it's a little sentimental?" Bregman asks.

"No, it's good," you say.

"That's a relief," Bregman sighs in relief. "Hearing that from you of all people... I mean, I understand how you all felt about this interview business, so... I'm glad to hear it came out alright."

"I've written a lot of letters to next of kin," you say, pausing to search for the right words. "Nothing ever really seems like it's enough. They need more and... I think this is that something more."

"Thank you, Sir," Bregman says with a nod. You both sit silently for a moment, then he says, "I just wish I'd gotten a chance to re-interview Colonel O'neill. Since he's taken so much time off following his injury and all... I'd really like his perspective on the events of that day."

"I'll take care of it," you say.


 

Your name is Jonas Quinn, and you knock on the door of Simon Well's house, tiny teddy bear gift in hand.

A moment later, the door opens, revealing Wells, who's walking with a cane.

"Hey, Jonas," Wells smiles. "Come in."

"Thanks, Simon," you say, following him in.

"Jonas, this is my wife, Marci," Wells introduces you two. "Marci, this is Jonas. He was there that day."

"Hi," Jonas smiles and waves.

"Hello," Marci smiles. "I'd love to get up and give you a hug, but..." She glances down into her arms, with the sleeping child there within.

"It's fine, don't get up," You move to sit on the first available seat, and place the teddy bear down on the sofa next to them.

"This is our daughter," Wells says.

"She's beautiful," you say, looking down upon the slumbering girl.

"Thanks," Marci says.

"Guess that ultrasound was wrong, huh?" You ask.

"Yeah, Dixon's been rubbing it in my face," Wells chuckles.

"What's her name?" You ask.

"We went through a couple of different ideas," Marci says. "We settled on Janet Nirrti Wells."

You blink, processing that.

"That's nice," you say.


 

Your name is Colonel Jack O'neill, and you grimace as you sit down at the SGC briefing room across from Bregman.

"Thanks for doing this, Colonel," Bregman says.

"I owed you a reschedule anyways," you say.

"Alright, let's get to it them..." Bregman signals for the cameras to start rolling. He puts on his mask, and you put on yours, and... "Colonel Jack O'neill, pleasure to finally get you to sit down with us."

"Yeah," you say. "Sure."

"So... We've had a lot of discussions with the SGC personnel over the last few months. You're one of the last left on the list."

"Must've missed a memo or something," you say, and watch as Bregman's mask cracks with a grin.

And thus the interview goes on.

Chapter Text

Chapter Text

Chapter Text

 

 

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: OCTOBER 20TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 04/30/0004.

"WAIT. A. FUCKING. SECOND!!!!"

Your name is Joey Claire and you realize something critically important.

"Uh- Was that to us or-?" Mallek asks, and you wave it off.

"No! Keep doing what you're doing!"

And so Mallek and Callie keep working on their computer hacking job.

"What is it?" Daraya asks.

"Penny- the Six yearold Penny- RECOGNIZED GANOS!" you explain. "But Ganos is *DEAD NOW* so how the hell does that work!?" You take a breath, then say, "IT DOESN'T! It really doesn't!! Not unless you realize that *Penny Herself Glitched The Timeline!!*"

"....Penny glitched the timeline, right..." Daraya stares. "She intentionally came back and *changed things* so that way things would go differently, but at the same time buggered up one of her own internal time loops!"

"Gaaaaah!!" You run your hands through your hair. "Damn it, Penny!! Why!? Why do that!? Now I'm stuck wondering what timeline we sent that little girl BACK TO!? Are we suddenly, in however many years it is, going to wind up with Two Pennys!? Did she go back to her original time line??? I just- I don't-" You cry out. "GAAAAAAHHHHH!"

You're stuck with a headache for the rest of the day, even after completing the random mission that Okurii sent your group on that, probably is of no critical importance to the over-arching timeline.



Aradia skipped through Diaspora town during the twilight hours of the night, oddly wearing a cosplay archaeologist's outfit from Troll!Indiana Jones.

Nobody dared asked why she was singing a tune about time travel gone wrong, and promptly tried to forget she was doing anything weird of this sort...

Except for a Cafe owner, that is, who decided to ask one of the Bar staff a series of questions as a "Routine Timeline Control Check" as has happened many times.

"Rukako! Timeline Control Check Lightning Round! Answer as truthfully no matter how weird or personal it may be!"

"Uh- Sure!" The Olive Blooded Troll of Indeterminate Gender replied.

"How did we meet?"

"I helped you save Mayuri from Trolls wanting to cull her!"

"Correct! Why did you join my Cafe Staff?"

"Because I wanted to help people out!"

"Correct! What Gender were you hatched with?"

"Female!"

"..." The Cafe Owner blinked, shocked. "Wait- what? Seriously?"

"Your memories aren't lining up again?" the olive blood asks.

"...I'm not sure. That's one point that doesn't line up, but... Hrm. I'll have to do more research."


 

EARTH DATE: OCTOBER 21ST, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 05/01/0004.

A day later, you're still Joey Claire and not wiped away by a realized paradox, and so you've decided to take the risk and requested a trip through the Quantum Mirror, to Keiko's world of Aincrad, so you can hunt Penny Polendina Harley down in person.

It's not that hard, all things considered. The ageless girl is somehow the only employee of a library on Aincrad's first floor in the middle of nowhere. All you had to do was ask Keiko if she knew any girls with orange hair and green eyes and, well. Here you are.

Penny is, naturally, surprised to see you, but even more so with the question you're asking.

"Ganos... died?" And then that surprise turns to shock, "But, no, then that'd mean..." She pales. "You- you're right. That- that shouldn't be possible. A glitch like that..."

"That's what's bugging me," you say. "It doesn't make any sense."

"I... I guess I succeeded a little too well at disrupting the timeline," Penny says. "I mean, I'm going to tell you something here that's frightening even me."

"What's that?" You ask.

"I don't remember ever jumping back in time at all to be that Penny," Penny says, looking frightened. "I.... I know on some level I should have experienced it, but that memory... I literally can't draw it up right now. And- and I remember a LOT with crystal clear clarity. So either I didn't do it, or-"

"Or the paradox has messed with your memories," you frown.

"I don't have an easy answer for you," Penny answers. "I.... Unless I had Faction Disguise as a spell and made myself look like Ganos...?" She shakes her head. "I don't know what to do. Oh, oh god, Aunt Joey. What have I done??"

"I have no idea," you answer. "But I think it's the temporal equivalent of the crater you left in the sand back on Cetus' planet."

"How's that?" Penny asks.

"Large, black, glassed, and smooth enough to be glossed over and forgotten about," you say, pulling her into a hug. "We'll figure something out to make it stable. Eventually. After we get rid of Anubis and English."

"I don't understand," Penny asks as she hugs you back. "Why not now?"

"Because... if English is a Lord of Time, what do you think a paradox of this nature would do to his powers?" You ask, breaking the hug and looking her in the eyes. "I'm pretty sure it'd screw things up on a HUGE level!"

"I didn't plan for this," Penny says, breaking the hug and looking you in the eyes. "But... we'll have to make due with what's happened." And then a thought occurs to her. "Oh- Oh God. Aunt Roxy! If Ganos is dead then-"

Needless to say, Penny closed up shop and joined you on a trip back through the mirror to find Roxy Lalonde.


 

"Hey, Xef?"

"Yeah, Sal?"

"Hand me that socket wrench from the tool box, would ya?"

"Sure."

And so did the Rust Blood and the Gold Blood work on the engine of a motorbike, making sure it could handle the strain of carrying with it two side cars mounted on either side, and powering the rocket boosters that were to be used for INSANE STUNTS.

Not that they ever got that far as to test it. Whole sweeps of off and on work on it and it was only just barely becoming functioning now. Alas, such was the pacing that came with a frantic work schedule only a Stargate Program could provide, combined with other personal hobbies that took up more free time that were unrelated to this random project that only the two of them cared about.

"Ah... Xefros?"

"Yeah, Salazl?"

"This is a non ratcheting socket wrench. Give me the one that ratchets instead?"

"Heh, sure."

Of course, it also didn't help matters any that they just kept screwing up requested equipment something around fifty percent of the time.

It was never a complain-able moment, though, for some reason neither of them were quite sure about. It was just a thing that was.

"Hmm... think we'll ever get this thing running?" Xefros asks.

"Probably," Salazl answers. "Eventually. I mean, it Starts. Just doesn't stay started. Gotta fix that first."

The project had started randomly, way back during their first days on the crashed All Your Base. Trizza's personal motor bike had not survived the crash well and thus was in a sorry state of repair. They'd joked, 'why not make it ours?' and the rest was sort-of history after that.

Nothing incredibly special about it beyond that.

And so they kept working.

"Ah, Sal? Hand me the torque screwdriver?"

"The mechanical torque or the manual torque?"

"Either'll work."

"Here's the manual."

"Thanks."

About a minute passed before there was the utterly heart wrenching sound of metal twisting.

"Ah- damn it."

"What happened?"

"Stripped a screw."

"What? How?"

"...You gave me the Mechanical instead of the Manual so I used it wrong."

"...Oh. Huh. I could've sworn that was the slot where I put the Manual one when I last used it."

"Weird."


 

"That.... is a very very large, and green, cat," Penny remarks, staring up at the towering replica of the GIZA SPHINX out somewhere on one of LOPAN's many large, open, and expansive planes.

"Apparently she's making a hotel," you, still Joey Claire and not, like, Joey Harley, answer. "Honestly, though... I didn't realize she was making it THAT big."

"I...." Penny takes a moment to breathe. "Okay. Let's go find her."

And so you head into the GIANT SPHINX'S ENTRANCE- poised innocuously between the front paws, almost as if framed as a NAME TAG attached to a COLLAR, lies a 'carved' relief of a four block made house, with one of the blocks being quartered and offset slightly. The door resides just under it, open, naturally, for those employees helping Roxy furnish the place as they cart in this or that.

"I'm amazed Roxy's made all of this," Penny says. "She never did anything like this in my time line. She just stuck to Pyramids."

"Just another mystery of the universe, I suppose," you remark before pausing at a stair case to ask a painter where Roxy Lalonde is.

You're told she's in the MAUSOLEUM, or something similar to that. You follow the directions the handy Olive Blooded Troll gives you, and start that way.


 

"DU DU DUUU!" A waitress skipped up to a table happily, tray full of food in arm. "Now Presentiiiing! Your lunch!"

"Thanks," Dammek says, smiling briefly as the happy-go-lucky Lime Blood delivers the food and then skips off to whatever table she has to wait on next.

Callie smiles as she starts off with her salad. "I can't believe how open some Lime Bloods are being now. It warms my heart, Dammek!"

"Well, with gals like you and Mikari out there showing there's nothing to be feared anymore, is it any wonder?" Dammek asks.

They both pause to look as the waitress in question chipperly teases the manager of the place over somehow breaking the Microwave yet again.

Said manager over-reacts in a stereotypical, clearly acting way, and the waitress giggles at his hammy, scenery chewing promises to buy a new one just as soon as he gets a lunch break.

Callie looks to Dammek, and grins. "Well, whatever the reason why, I'm just glad we don't have to be hiding anymore."

"Cheers to that," Dammek raises his soda glass, and Callie does the same.

"Indeed!"

Clink!!

A few minutes later, Callie speaks up, "So, Karkat asked me an interesting question the other day."

"Oh?" Dammek asks, "What was it?"

"Why the Kawoosh doesn't transmit the matter through the wormhole," Callie answers.

"...Okay," Dammek blinks. "Odd question to ask."

"Got me thinking though, about one of the nagging little details we have on Plan D," Callie says.

"Which is?" Dammek asks.

"Well... we're currently planning around the Safeguards in place, right?" Callie smiles, grimly. "Wouldn't it just be easier to remove them entirely from the specific Gates in question, and program them instead to act the way we want them to act?"

"For example...?" Dammek motions for her to elaborate.

"Well... For starters, the problem with the Gates not transmitting matter through the unstable vortex that forms in both directions," Callie says. "I think I have an idea of how to make that possible."

"But that isn't possible," Dammek counters. "It's only one way for matter-"

"But two ways for energy!" Callie raises her finger to interject. "Radio frequencies travel both directions, for example. And energy based lifeforms can travel backwards through an incoming wormhole as well! So... if the problem is matter, we remove matter from the equation entirely."

"Wait... are you suggesting we reprogram a Stargate to *not* reassemble whatever matter it receives through a wormhole?" Dammek asks.

"More like telling it to just spit out the constituent matter as energy without reassembling it on the other side," Callie offers. "But yes, basically."

"That's even more terrifying!" Dammek says, his eyebrows raising visibly over the edges of his shades. "That can't be possible, can it??"

Callie shrugs, "Won't know til we try it and find out."


 

Your name is Joey Claire, still is, even, and you idly check your horns. Still there, right one still has a bullet hole carved into it.

Good. You're still you.

And Roxy....

"Ay Yi Yi...." You intone, staring at the massive, subteranean chamber that's basically. Well.

It's a giant spiral staircase built around a giant sword, and at the top of it...

At the top of it is Roxy, precariously straightening an actual sword into the rocky platform at the top.

"...Someone's been busy," Penny remarks quietly. "And I say this as someone who took the time to build a secret library inside of my middle of nowhere library."

"Libraries are cool," you say. "I guess... we should start climbing up."

"Yeah," Penny nods, and so you start walking, climbing.... Ascending.

Oh.

Oh, Roxy...

A few minutes later, you've reached the top, and find Roxy firmly sealing the sword into place on its podium.

That sword... it's the one Roxy requested Ganos' ashes be made into.

"Hey, Roxy...?" You begin.

"Huh?" She looks up, frowning. "Hey, Joey. And... Penny, I guess?"

Penny nervously nods.

"So.... what'd'ya wanna talk 'bout?" Roxy asks.

"Aunt Ganos wasn't supposed to die," Penny says. "It- we-"

"Penny glitched her own personal timeline," you explain. "This Penny doesn't remember going back in time to before Abydos happened, at all, implying that Penny is from our causality branch... except that Penny *also* recognized Ganos as her aunt."

"...And Ganos is dead so..." Roxy blinks. "Well, that sucks." She sighs, and summons a bottle of- oh, thankfully it's a bottle of cherry flavored soda. She takes a hefty swing. "Bleh. So. It sucks, but what does that have to do with me?"

"I... I didn't find out until Aunt Joey came to tell me," Penny says. "I- I didn't mean for anyone to die who didn't in my branch of events. I didn't want anyone to die!!!"

"Well, people did," Roxy answers. "So, what, you want a pat on the back and a hug to make it all better or something??" She frowns.

"No, I-" Penny shakes her head. "I just wanted to see how you were holding up. You two were close in my timeline so, I realized... I..." She sighs. "I just... this is such a mess."

Roxy sighs, then motions at the sword, "If it's apologies you want, take it up with Ganos herself."

You eye Roxy, but she doesn't say anything else. Still, Penny steps up to the sword, and- surprisingly, unbidden out of nowhere, a holographic appirition of Ganos Lal appears before you, clearly being emitted by a small stone mounted in the center of the sword's hand guard.

"A...Aunt Ganos?" Penny asks, staring at it.

The hologram makes no obvious intent of replying to the question.

"What the-?" You stare at it, then turn to Roxy. "What is this?"

"Memorial," Roxy answers. "Keiko added the gemstone; her idea, not mine. Reads the genetics in the ashes made into the sword, makes a hologram based on that appearance."  She pauses, then adds, "They have similar tech on Aincrad, 'parently. Some historians download all their knowledge and appearances into some kind of matrix to serve as some sort of guide to future generations, so..." she shrugs. "Yeah. I figured, might as well put it to good use."

"I'm familiar with it," Penny says, staring into Ganos' eyes. "I wasn't expecting that here, though..."

"It's limited, right now," Roxy says. "I can't exactly whip up a carbon copy of Ganos' memories and personality from thin air- and believe me, I've tried- and it has to be externally powered, but, hey, I could manage that." She takes a deep breath, then says, "I'll figure it out one day, though. Maybe I'll find something Ganos left behind for us, or something."

Penny takes a step away from the sword and the hologram vanishes. "I... maybe I can find something on that," she says. "I... My Ganos left me with a lot of crystals and stuff that I brought back with me. If I can find something that'll be compatible..."

"I'll admit, it'd be nice to be able to talk with her again, even if it's just a computer emulating her," Roxy says, staring at the blade.

And then you realize exactly how the paradox resolves itself... not that you're going to say anything outloud right now.

That future, six year old Penny's "Aunt Ganos" was a hologram. This one, right here, only with the capability to talk back to whoever talks to it first.

You're realizing now... there probably wasn't any paradox at all.

Still... your hand reaches up to trace the cut out shape of your horn... There's every possibility that isn't how this shakes out.

You're really hoping that the hologram is the easiest solution. It'd certainly be the most elagent, and yet...

You're very concerned that a severed time loop like this could cause who knows what kind of trouble for the Universe at large in some very unpredictable ways. After all, if the tension in the loop were great enough, severing it could cause the string to rebound in any number of temporal directions.

...But what do you know? You're certainly not Time-bound on the Alternian Zodiac's Aspect Wheel....

You make a note to check in with ARGO LALONDE the first chance you get.


 

"Hey! Ventus!" Skylla Koriga calls out, entering the Ashlander's Veil. "Ventus! Hey! Anyone seen Ventus!? Oi! DJ!!! Come out come out where-ever you are!"

"What?" the winged Gold Blood looks up, wearing clothes that seemed slightly different than what Skylla was used to him wearing. "What is it?"

"I was calling your name," Skylla says.

"Eh? What?" he asks. "I didn't hear it."

"I said 'Ventus' like three times," Skylla clarifies.

"...That's not my name though?" He asks, tilting his head in confusion. "That's the first time I've ever even heard that name, actually."

"...Ventus Skylar?" Skylla checks. "Last name similar to my first name?"

"Nope," he shakes his head, and then states his actual name. "Anemoi. Anemoi Arghul. That's my name."

"What?" Skylla grimaces, feeling a pounding headache upon hearing it. "But that's... no... I... I guess that is right, isn't it?" She blinks. "Sorry, I guess I got confused there for a moment," she smiles in apology. "Sorry bout that. I don't know what came over me there. That's really weird. I was sure for a moment your name was... what was it again?"

"Something weird," Anemoi shrugs. "It's fine, though," he says. "Happens to the best of us sometimes. Not the first time today someone mistook me for someone else, so I guess today's just a day for it. Wonder if I've got a twin brother out there somewhere or something..." He shakes his head. "Anyways, what did you want to talk to me about?"

"Oh! Right!" Skylla claps her hands. "I'd like to register for that dueling competition you guys've got going on soon!"

Off to the side, a certain cafe owner pauses as he emerges from the kitchens of the Ashlander's Veil's shipping office, a microwave box in hand. He stares at the DJ and the temporally displaced cowgirl as their conversation switches tracks back to what it should have been, name confusion put aside.

"Okarin?" The Lime Blooded Waitress asks of him as she gets up from her chair, done waiting for him. "What's wrong?"

"Nothing, Mayuri," he says, shaking his head, "I swear I just felt something like a timeline shift or something weird like that."

"Don't be weird," the girl says, "timelines don't just shift suddenly for no apparent reason!"

"You say that, but..." The man shakes his head. "No, it's probably just my imagination."

The two unknowing Time Aspects brushed aside their confusion for the moment, and continued on with their day to day lives for the time being.

Though, the Cafe Owner, Okarin Kyouma would file a report to General Okurii Leijon later that night reporting on several disturbances to the time space continuum that he had noticed.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: DECEMBER 21ST, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 06/30/0004.

Your name is STITCH, personal tailor for THE FELT.

You've had a long several months that's felt like an incredibly long day.

You barely want to think about it- paradoxes like this make your head hurt and spin and- URGH.

While you'd tended to LORD ENGLISH to ensure his survival, a PARADOX got loose and tore open a massive gaping hole in the SPACE TIME FABRIC of the Lord's CAIRO OVERCOAT.

As soon as you noticed, it had started to stitch itself back together, but incorrectly. You fixed the rest of the damage, but damn, that was a close call. If the strings of that Time Loop had rebounded any further up when they snapped, then more Time Loops might have been severed from the force and that's no good for anyone.

Last time something like this had happened was in.... eh.... or was about 70 OR SO YEARS AGO? You think. You're not sure. Either way, one tiny loop snapped and the whole Overcoat just about shattered into pieces from the force of the MANY, MANY, COUNTLESS TIME LOOPS that were then shattered in turn.

You had to do a lot of sewing for several months just to make sure everything went back into place right. And that was on both the MAIN COAT AND BACKUP COAT too! Paradoxes like that aren't fun to deal with, no sir-ee they are not.

You just hope that's the last of that nonsense. Hopefully your patchwork fixes didn't cause any corrupted details, or dimensional shifts like with Die's Doll. It'd suck if you misplaced a thread and suddenly you were Number SIX instead of NUMBER NINE, or someone got their hair color wrong, or their name changed or-

Well. At any rate. You're tired, and it's time for some solid shut-eye.


 

Anubis considered his options, which were swiftly growing limited by the day.

Despite the setback English had suffered of his sudden POWER INCOMPETENCE... and the devastating double assault on the Tau'ri Alpha Site... Anubis' forces were still fighting a losing battle.

English's ships were just simply too tough to destroy, and the Goa'uld designs just... Could NOT compete. Even the ones Anubis himself had upgraded based on stuff English had loaned him, which wasn't all that surprising. The Brat kept all the good stuff to himself. A smart move, of sorts.

There was only one real option, and that was to find a storehouse of ANCIENT POWER... possibly that LOST CITY he'd heard mention of in certain ascended circles.

The Tau'ri finding one of his search parties hunting for a repository of knowledge in those Ancient Ruins had been an unmitigated disaster. After they'd fled, English's forces had shown up and started wrecking the place even further.

Damn it all.

He was going to have to speed up the search, at the risk of making it obvious to everyone else what he was doing.

It didn't matter as long as he got his hands on that ANCIENT POWER... anything at all would do- Weapons, a City, a super Power Source to replace his EYES...

It was a risk. It was a huge, major stupid risk....

But there weren't any other better options.

In a few months, if Anubis couldn't get his hands on something to turn the tide of this war... English's forces were going to obliterate everything he owned with a concentrated beam of light-based energy.

Anubis rarely admitted defeat, or his own mistakes... but here was a time that yes, he was reluctantly admitting....

Turning on English so soon has been a costly mistake.


 

EARTH DATE: DECEMBER 27TH, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 07/06/0004.

Your name is Daniel Jackson, and you blink as a note tablet and a picture land in front of you on the table. The picture is of a stone tablet written in Ancient. More, the translation on the note tablet describes a repository of knowledge holding the location of the LOST CITY within it.

You look up, and ask, "Where did you get this?"

"One of our agents," Jacob Carter answers, "works with a translator of obscure languages as a body guard. Apparently a bounty hunter got her hands on this tablet, thinking it would lead to a storehouse of ancient treasure. Apparently she wasn't happy learning it was just about a Lost City, but took it anyways."

"Who else knows about it?" You ask.

"Considering the place was raided by Anubis' forces just shortly after our agent got this to us and the fact that Anubis is withdrawing a lot of his forces out of battle with English to gather in places unknown?" Jacob sighs. "Too many people."

"We need to figure out what planet this tablet is referring to then," you decide, snatching up the translation and the photos of the original tablet. "And quickly."


 

EARTH DATE: DECEMBER 31ST, 2000.

DIASPORA DATE: 07/10/0004.

Your name is Jack O'neill, and as you focus on frying up a large NEW YEARS FEAST for your team and for everyone else who's come over to your place for some reason, you can't help but be a bit disturbed.

Everyone is, really.

Robert Kinsey made it into the actual position of Vice President of the United States. Hammond insists the man above him is a solid, good man without any ties to the NID beyond being friends with Kinsey, and that said friendship shouldn't be a mark against him.... But still:

Damn it all, it doesn't bode well for the SGC, especially if Kinsey decides the man above him is restricting him TOO much...

You have it on good authority that's what happened last time, in the Aschen timeline.

Different president, though, apparently. Not Henry Hayes.

The Inauguration is soon, though. So very soon. Things are gonna change.

You return to your meal prep work, and try to put those thoughts behind you.

"But I'm telling you!" Argo suddenly exclaims. "They had a different actress playing the Pink Ranger!"

"Well, yeah, of course they did," Jude says. "They just wrote her off like three weeks ago because the Actress had some medical issues or something."

"No! I'm not talking about that!" Argo says, pointing at the television playing an episode of POWER RANGERS: LOST GALAXY. "They had the Pink Ranger from the last season playing her replacement not the former villain playing her!"

"Yeah, I'm remembering that too," Davis remarks.

"Maybe you're remembering them setting up for her to do that and then didn't follow through?" Jude asks.

"No, I'm remembering her doing the morph and everything," Argo says.

"Same," Davis nods.

"I wonder..." Cassie muses, "did anyone else caught up in the time bubble notice anything else?"

"I don't watch the show unless one of you kids is watching it," you say.

"I only keep track of the Zord Designs in case Dammek decides to replicate one, or the shows steal the design from him again," Carter remarks.

"Again?" Argo asks, frowning. "What do you mean, Aga-" And then she stops as the Astro Megaship appears on screen of the episode in question. "WHa- What the- How is that there!??"

"It was in the last season," Jude says. "We're pretty sure someone leaked the designs for Astro and Delta over seas and they liked them enough to use it in the Show they based Power Rangers off of."

"But- But-" Argo stammers. "That wasn't in the show at all before!!"

"Yeah, echoing those sentiments there," Davis says. "That definitely was never in the show before. I'd remember it if that happened."

"...What was the last season you saw?" Cassie asks, suddenly with that tone of voice that never bodes well to you. "I mean, what do you remember coming before Lost Galaxy?"

"In Space," Argo says, "but they didn't have spaceship zords like Astro or Delta! They just had the same five or six combining robots as always."

"The Mega Voyagers?" Jude asks.

"No, those were the second set," Argo says.

"Then what were the first?" Cassie asks.

"They were, like, animal themed space ships with these glowing orb attachment things," Argo says. "The- The... Kyu? No, the CUE Voyagers."

"Yeah, I'm remembering that too," Davis agrees. "Like, half the ships were the orbs and served as, like the combination points for the limbs or something like that."

"Red was a lion, blue was a wolf, black was an ox, pink was an eagle, and yellow was a swordfish!" Argo lists off.

"I think I'd remember a swordfish zord," Jude remarks.

"Maybe you would if you had a Time Aspect," Cassie says. "Argo and Davis have felt weird around time shenanigans, we know this as a fact. So what if they're picking up on some weird timeline hiccup?"

"What kind of timeline hiccup could cause that, though?" Jonas asks. "A whole other set of memories from a radically different TV show?"

"I'll check in with Alternia later," Carter chimes in, "maybe something happened we're not aware of?"

"Or perhaps it is the result of something we have been aware of and did not think anything of it as important," Teal'c says, entering the room as he, John, and Jade help Janet and her younger, cloned self bring in the food that the Fraisers had made for the party.

Argo stares at Teal'c, and Davis casually remarks:

"That reminds me, I've been meaning to ask, T, What's with the hair?"

Teal'c blinks. "Pardon?"

"The-" Davis motions at the top of his head, or rather, indicating Teal'c's head of hair. "Hair! You grew it out last month?"

"I have been growing it out for several Months," Teal'c says.

"No you haven't," Davis says. "I only noticed it last month."

"Uhoh," Cassie says. "I get the feeling this might be bigger of a problem than we think it is."

"I'm going to call the SGC and contact Alternia," Carter says, getting up from her seat.

"...I feel like I missed something," Janet says.

"Me too," Missy agrees.

You can't help but ask aloud, "Ya think so, huh?"

What a new years this is turning out to be so far, and the old one's not even over yet... D'OH!

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 16TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 07/26/0004.

The moment was here and had finally come.

The next President of the United States had been inaugurated.

And that President is YOU: HENRY HAYES.

You're sort of just, enjoying the moment, strolling down the hallways of the WEST WING, with AIDES and SECRET SERVICE AGENTS trailing along for good measure.
STAN is talking to you about the CURRENCIES of the WORLD, for some reason. You sort of lost track somewhere along the lines of staring at a Bronze Bust of some 19th Century President you couldn't quite place from this specific replication of his visage.

"Also, the President of Togo was desposed about six hours ago. He managed to get a plane to Nigeria and he's calling for American troops to help restore order," Stan's voice cuts through the veil, and you jerk your attention away from the statue over to tell him:

"This is my first day!" Then, you turn back and stare at a bust of Abraham Lincoln and study it for a moment. You wonder how much HE had to deal with on HIS first day?

"Yes, Mister President," Stan nods in acceptance of that. "The New York Times is also about to launch an investigation into voting irregularities in six Southern States. I have Teddy on it."

Then, you notice the other Aides following you. You thought they had other places to be.

You feel like you should know who they are and why they're following you. Uhhh--

"Also, there's a storm in the Atlantic about to hit the coast of Maine. They're expecting gale force winds and twenty inches of snow," Stan continues, using the word "Also" a lot.

You glance at a bust of JFK, and hope your term doesn't end like his did.

"Emergency management teams are standing by, but we've scheduled a call to the Governor at Ten A.M., so you can pledge our support."

You glance back at the other aides, they look like a bunch of lost ducks.

"...You're all not going to follow me around all day, are you?" You ask, a little concerned.

"No, Mister President," Stan smiles at you.

"Good," you say, "Carry on with your jobs as you would any other day then!"

Finally, you change hallways from the rest of that group, and they carry on to their own business while Stan continues with you into the RECEPTION AREA outside the OVAL OFFICE.

Your SECRETARIES RISE as you enter.

"Hello," you smile at them, then glance at a woman who looks more used to everything than the others, "Holly, is it? Nice name."

"Thank you, Mister President," there's a nod from her.

"Finally," Stan says, "The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs is waiting for you in your office."

You stop and stare at the door to the OVAL OFFICE- suddenly so imposing.

You look to Stan, and ask, lowly, "He knows its my first day, right?"

"Yes, Sir, Mister President," Stan nods.

Well, okay then.

You open the door and enter your office for the first proper time.

GENERAL FRANCIS MAYNARD and a Military Aide are waiting inside.

"Francis!" You greet with a smile, offering your hand. Francis shakes it in turn.

"Mister President," he says. "We need to talk, sir. It's important."

"Okay, in a minute!" You say, but moving to sit down on a sofa. "Just, let me enjoy the moment first!"

You kick off your shoes and rest your feet on the rug for a moment. Oh, that's soft! You wriggle your toes into it for a moment.

Ah. Yes... You could get used to this.

"Moment's over, Sir," Francis says.

You study his stone faced expression, then sigh. "Okay, right," you look to Stan, give him his thanks, and then to the Military Aide, a similar thanks. The two of them leave, and Francis sits down across from you.

"Mister President, I'm here to bring you up to speed on a program we've been running under Cheyenne Mountain for the past Eight or so years," he says.

"I've already had my top secret briefings," you tell him.

"With all due respect, Sir, not this one," he hands you a folder, marked "STARGATE COMMAND." The hell is this?? "Mister President, for the past Eight Years, the United States Air Force has been sending teams to alien planets by means of an alien device known as the Stargate."

You laugh. "That's funny! This is a joke, right? First day prank on the new President, right?" You grin. "Oh, that's good. I didn't know you were such a jokester, Francis! I love a good sense of humor! Now then," you clap your hands. "I have to call the Ex-President of Togo, and when I'm done, there's something about the end of the world via freak meteor storms or something?"

You stand and head over to your DESK. YOUR DESK! Holy Hannah! You've got THE DESK!!!

"Stargate Program, good one," you chuckle.

"Sir, the Ex-President of Togo will have to wait," Francis says. "This is not a joke."

Your laughter fades as you turn to look at him.

"The USAF has been sending people to other planets?" You ask.

"Yes, Sir."

"For the last seven years?"

"Eight, technically, but yes."

"By means of an alien device...?" You trail off.

"Known as the Stargate," he nods.

You sit behind your desk and sigh.

"I liked this better as a joke, Francis."


 

"Senator MacKnight is requesting you move the meeting to next week," Bob's Aide, Sara is saying through the door as you approach it.

"He's trying to duck me, Connor doesn't want me to commit on the crime bill! Laughable," Bob says.

"What should I tell him?"

"Forget it! That son of a bitch came in on our coattails, now it's time to pay the piper!" Robert Kinsey says as you burst into your VICE PRSIDENT'S OFFICE.

"WHAT. THE HELL. WERE YOU THINKING!?" You're not quite yelling, but you're VERY incensed.

"Mister Pres-" Sara starts.

"Why didn't you tell me!?" You ask, pleading with Bob.

"Sara, excuse us for a moment please?" Bob asks, and with that, she leaves, closing the door behind her.

A moment's pause, and Bob says, "I take it you've just been briefed by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs on the 'new reality' we live in."

"Not only do I find out the AIR FORCE is engaged in SPACE TRAVEL!" You stress, FURIOUS. "But I find out my running mate KNEW ALL ABOUT IT THE ENTIRE TIME!?"

"I was under a special Executive Gag Order," he tries to explain.

"Since WHEN!?"

"Little over six years now," he says.

"That's unbelievable!" you say.

"Mr. President, I realize this is a little overwhelming right now, but what you really need to know is that the Stargate is being seriously mismanaged. It's urgent that we-" NO.

"What are you going on about!?" You nearly shout at him. "The reports I've read show that the only times things have gone wrong, it's because of that PET PROJECT OF YOURS!!"

"The-" Bob stops, and he has the most utterly confused look on his face. And then, he gets THAT LOOK. "Excuse me?! The NID has been my desperate attempt to maintain some sort of PROPER CONTROL and ACCOUNTABILITY, because the oversight on the place is COMPLETELY-"

"BOB!" You stomp your right heel ever so sharply against the rug.

"....What?" He asks, staring at you.

"You've got that LOOK," you tell him. "The one where you're going overboard trying to sell someone on some campaign promise you know damn well you don't believe in! I saw it enough on the trail! That look is why you became my VP and aren't in MY SHOES!" you frown. "Stop treating me like some not-so-gullible voter, and tell it to me straight. No bullshit. No bullcrap."

"Mr. President, why do you think I was ordered to keep quiet?" He asks. "This was a deliberate attempt by the military, and-and the previous administration, to drive a wedge between us, because they knew I was going to come after them--"

"FOR GOD'S SAKE, BOB!" You interject. "I ask you to lay it on me straight, NOT double down on the rhetoric!!"

"For God's sake is right," Bob starts.

"OH COME ON, BOB!" You just about restrain yourself from snarling, "If you want me to buy into this 'holier than thou' crap, you gotta prove me you're right with EVIDENCE that isn't tainted by whatever grudge it is you HAVE with the ship George is running!!"

And with that, you turn to leave.


 

That night, you sit on the sofa in the Oval Office, reading through pile after pile of BLUE CLASSIFIED FILES.

Across from you, Franciss sits quietly.

"Hosted Alien Dignitaries, Acquired Alient Technology.... Traveled back in time?" You look at Francis.

"A few times locally, many more in the Alternian Galaxy," Francis answers. "We also have a Time Travel capable enemy in the form of English and his Felt gang."
You return to the files and- Wait, what.

"Did they really Blow Up a Sun!?" you ask, looking Francis in the eyes.

"As I understand it, Sir, yes. Yes they did," he nods.

"That's gotta look good on the ol' resume," you muse.

"They've done some very amazing things," Francis says, sounding...

"You sound like a fan, Francis," you say.

"I can't help but appreciate the number of times they've saved our world," he says.

You chuckle, "Some people think this world wouldn't have needed saving if we'd left well enough alone."

Francis gives a tired sigh, "Kinsey's point of view is tired, and ignores many facts, Sir."

"Such as?" You ask.

"The Enemies we face currently, Anubis and English, had plans for both Galaxies that would have spelled doom for Earth no matter what we did," Francis says. "If the SGC had not been established, if one girl had not found her way to Alternia when she did... Earth would have been destroyed or conquered many times over already."

"You sound like you don't trust the Vice President," you observe.

"Kinsey has made it clear many times that he has his own agenda," Francis says, choosing his words carefully. "Especially during local diplomatic relations."

"You say that as if..." You pause. "Wait. We've come forwards to other countries on this??"

"Russia got their hands on a Stargate thanks to Kinsey's NID giving it to them," Francis explains. "Later, China called our bluff on a cover story regarding a crashed Goa'uld vessel. France and the UK were brought in during the aftermath. Kinsey's presence was toxic during those meetings. Intentionally, and disturbingly so."

"I know Bob's tried to shut the SGC down when he was at Appropriations, but that sounds..." Okay, not SO terribly out of character for him, but... "That sounds like you're saying he was trying to take control of the Stargate by using the other countries as leverage!"

"He was," Francis answers. "If not for diplomats from Earth's allies being a part of that Meeting, Kinsey might well have succeeded... and there's no telling what damage he could have done."

"You're kidding," you say, staring at Francis. "Bob? Dealing Damage? He may want to take control of the program, but that doesn't mean it'd be dangerous in his hands!"

"He's made it clear in the past that he himself personally wants certain pieces of technology, to the point of harassing key individuals on our Allied sides, repeatedly, and with clear prejudice," Francis says. "One such piece of technology is a Bracelet, that serves as the key to a powerful weapon capable of wiping out all life within a galaxy in one powerful psychic scream."

"...That's..." you can't believe that. "I mean, besides his belief in his "divine right," I can't see why Bob would want something like that! ...And what about that Rogue element of the NID? Didn't he take that down?"

"It was rather the NID cleaning house, using the Senator as an information source," Francis answers. "Of course, given the top secret nature of the SGC at the time, we couldn't call him out publicly on his taking credit."

You groan, "I've got a bad feeling about where some of that campaign financing came from all of a sudden."

"Mister President?"

"Sorry," you say with false innocence, "did I say that out loud?"


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 17TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 07/27/0004.

Into your office once more comes Robert and someone named Richard Woolsey. Francis isn't here yet.

"Sorry to keep you, Mister President," Robert says, sounding somewhat pleased at this early opportunity. "I don't believe you've met but this is-"

"Richard Woolsey," you interject. "I've read his file. Nice job with the Russian Mob ties over the last few years." You glance at Robert. The Russians got a Gate because of the NID? You feel odd about that fact compared with Woolsey's record.

"Er, yes, he's been-" Robert begins-

"Researching the SGC's competence?" You ask.

"Exactly that," Woolsey says, taking a seat. "I've brought several files in on-"

"Save it," you say, raising your finger. "For Francis. He'll be here any moment now."

"Of course you'd invite him back," Robert rolls his eyes. "You're buying into the Rhetoric!"

"Actually," you say, "he said that I needed to meet with one of the Diplomats you angered, Bob."

Robert goes pale. "He- He what?"

"Sir, I'm afraid that's a bad idea," Woolsey begins, "they're all involved together. They're part of the problem."

"George Hammond is a highly decorated officer, a thirty year veteran with the US Air Force," you growl at the man. "And while that may not carry a lot of weight over with you NID folk, it still means a lot to me, and to the people in this town."

"This isn't a trial, Mister President, although it certainly wouldn't surprise me if it came to-"

And then a sharp hum cuts Woolsey off.

PVVVVVMMMM

"Oh Hell No-" Robert gripes just seconds before.

SHING!!!

Francis appears suddenly with a burst of light, and standing next to him is-

By god.

It's an alien girl.

"Hello, everyone," smiles the lime-eyed girl before you. "Sorry if we're late."

Kinsey seems to cower in his seat.

"W-What's the meaning of this?" Woolsey seems surprised by the entrance and everything else.

"The meaning of this is that Miss Aiikho has several concerns she wishes to bring up with the newly elected President of the United States regarding the terms and agreements in our trade treaty," Francis says, sounding as if he's a shark scenting fresh meat.

"Well," you say, rising from your seat. "I'm President Henry Hayes. It's a pleasure to meet you miss...?" You offer her your hand.

"Mikarii Aiikho," she says, shaking it. Hoo, is that a strong grip. "Ambassador from the Alternia Galaxy. And the pleasure is all mine," she smiles, revealing some sharp looking teeth in some corners.

"Miss Aiikho, a pleasure to meet you," you repeat, even as she breaks the hand shake. "Have a seat?"

"Of course," she sits down deliberately on your side of the office, opposite Robert and Woolsey. "Ah, hello, Former Senator. I hear it's 'Vice' President now?" Her tone of voice is absolutely chilling. "You know, General Leijon had half a mind to suggest we trap you on an uninhabited planet for your stunt back during the Disclosure meeting. Of course, we convinced her otherwise that it would be way too harsh of a punishment."

"I- well-" Robert doesn't know what to say.

"Dammek, of course, talked her down from it by suggesting we trap you on a planet with nothing but stone-aged tribal warriors," Miss Aiikho continues on. "Naturally, neither of those are feasible options given the current political environment. That said, do be aware that you are on thin ice, and Earth's standing in our alliance is equally thin with your presence at this meeting."

You look at Robert, and say, sharply, "I know that tone of voice, Bob. That's eerily close to your wife's tone of voice at the Christmas Party we had two years ago." IE: Whatever you did to tick her off, you really stepped into it something fierce, Bob.

Woolsey clears his throat. "As that may be, I was not informed this meeting was to renegotiate a treaty, but instead to disclose the misdeeds of Stargate Command."

"Ah, and Richard Woolsey," Miss Aiikho looks to him, and he looks like he wants to crawl up into a ball and hide for the moment. "You've not enraged us too terribly with your previous actions. Keep it that way, and you might survive to escape whatever fate Kinsey brings upon himself." She pauses, then says, "But yes, these 'misdeeds' must be addressed first. Should they not?"

"Exactly," you say. "Let's stick to specifics here. Not opinions. If people need replacing, I want to see evidence. Cold hard facts, and not opinion."

"R-Recently, most recently in fact," Woolsey says. "General Hammond ordered an off world rescue operation despite ample indication that he was sending his people into an ambush. As a result, a very valuable member of Stargate Command was killed-"

"Ah, yes," Mikari Aiikho interjecting. "'Ample indication' in this case being literally ordering the team to return home when they were ambushed by one of Anubis' Jaffa and had a team member wounded."

"Reckless endangerment," Woolsey says, curtly.

"What ever happened to the motto of 'Never leave a man behind,' Hm?" Mikari Aiikho taunts.

Francis speaks, "Sending your people into potentially dangerous situations is a natural consequence of military command."

Woolsey bristles, "Maybe so, but ignoring evidence of an enemy trap is at best foolish, and at worst, criminally negligent. General Hammond admits his responsibility. His own report is essentially a confession."

"Evidence of a Trap?" You quote. “If what miss Aiikho said here is true, then they were under active assault. That’s not a Trap, that’s already an engagement.” You frown at the man. “I said, skip the personal opinions. Leave it as Fact.” You then add, “Besides, all Hammond’s report proves is that he had the guts to own up to his mistakes!”

“Unfortunately, in this case, mistakes can lead to compromising the entire planet,” Woolsey says, “I have uncovered a mountain of evidence implicating not only General Hammond, but his first-line team as well.”

“Oh, this should be good,” Mikarii Aiikho sits a bit back in her chair. “Please, do, go on. I’d like to hear what this evidence you have to speak of is, Woolsey.”

“Those people are heroes,” Francis seethes at Woolsey.

“We have no intention of minimizing the accomplishments of either the General or SG-1,” Robert says, sounding a bit more rehearsed and competent. “Their respective achievements speak for themselves. But, intermittent successes cannot excuse ongoing misconduct.”

Woolsey continues from there, seeming to get his feet under him again, “Over the past seven years, SG-1 has shown a disregard for military authority. They have compromised national security and exercised extremely poor judgment in the performance of their duties.”

You laugh. “You should be on my speech writing team! Come on, cut the crap, will you? As crazy as it sounds, we're sitting around here talking about people who are fighting aliens, right? Could we PLEASE be specific!”

“Yes, sir. Let's start with insubordination. At the start of the Program’s history, the SGC was closed, pending official sealing of the Stargate, and SG-1 and one Jake Harley secreted themselves away to a hidden, thought disabled Stargate and traveled deliberately off world, disobeying those orders to shut down all operations,” Woolsey says.

“Point of fact!” Mikari chimes in. “SGC was shut down due to Kinsey ordering it such despite the recent inteligence gathered that Earth was about to be invaded by the Goa’uld. SG-1 headed off an invasion, and saved the Earth.”

“Nonetheless, they are guilty of it,” Woolsey says, “And it was by no means an isolated incident!” He places a folder down, “CHILDREN were able to access an Alien Device meant for testing, and then stole through the Stargate for a Joy Ride.”

“And In the Process subverted not only a Goa’uld Invasion, but also prevented the Earth from being invaded by a different Alien menace by disposing of the Goa’uld Mothership’s powercore through their stargate,” Mikari counters, raising an eyebrow at Woolsey. “Said Children were ALSO survivors from an alternate, doomed timeline, in which your man Robert Kinsey was President following the VERY suspicious death of his President, and was complicit in the ALIEN THREAT that was massacring Earth’s population through eugenics.”

“Hearsay!” Robert counters. “None of that can be proven in a court of law!”

Woolsey looks at Robert, and says, “I didn’t know any of that Timeline data. You said you’d gotten me the complete file on those children!”

“They’re CHILDREN! What else is there to know about them!?” Robert says. “They make things up! Time Travel... Like that’s even really a thing!”

“Besides,” Francis says, “the alien devices in question were discovered to have a judgement imparment field installed to make people better warriors.”

“Ah, of course,” Woolsey says. “Which brings us to the alarming frequency with which members of the SGC or SG-1 have fallen under alien influence.”

He puts a pile of folders closer, and lifts the top off.

“Major Samantha Carter: implanted with a Goa'uld symbiote-”

“TOK’RA,” Mikari counters, growling in offense. “A Tok’ra Symbiote, I should remind you. They are not Goa’uld, but Tok’ra. There is a difference. And that Tok’ra, as a matter of fact, is named Jolinar.”

“And continues to serve in our most Top Secret facility to this day,” Woolsey continues. “With FULL. SECURITY. CLEARANCE.”

“Jolinar is an Ambassador,” Francis says, seeming tense. “You’d be keen to remember that.”

“Teal'c: an alien,” Woolsey continues. “Former soldier of the Goa'uld. Now possesses full security clearance as well.”

“He’s Earned that Trust!” Francis and Mikari chime in at the same time.

“And when will that trust backfire?” Woolsey asks. “SG-1 has already had their memories tampered with once to the point of forgetting who they are. When comes the day he is turned back to the Loyal Ranks of the System lords?” He says, “And let’s not forget the worst of the bunch, Team Leader, Jack O’neill.” He changes folders, and reads it, “Affected by alien contagions a half dozen times. Experimented upon by extraterrestrials another half dozen times. Had his memories manipulated on numerous occasions. Had the entire repository of an Ancient alien database effectively downloaded into his head.” Woolsey puts the folder down on the table for all to see. “Not long after this incident, the Colonel began exhibiting strange behavior, speaking an alien language, demonstrating superhuman intellect. As it turns out, he was undergoing some sort of transformation as a result of the knowledge he had absorbed. Were it not for the timely intervention of another alien race, he would've been lost to us.”

“How these people maintain their sanity is beyond me. I'm having trouble just sitting here listening to it,” you say.

“That, Mr. President, is exactly my point. How can we trust these individuals to protect our planet after everything they've been through?” Woolsey asks.

“And that, Mister Woolsey,” Mikari chimes in, “is something you should be asking yourself after every military mission on this planet alone.”

“Excuse me?” Woolsey asks, turning to stare at her.

“We’ve read the studies,” Mikari says. “Further, we of Alternia have seen the results first hand- what happens when Trauma goes untreated in a person. When their support structure is suddenly ripped out from under them.... It is not pretty.” She stands up, and begins pacing. “We on Alternia devised a system- two of our Romantic Quadrants are designed towards pacification of others. Auspitiziation, where one person prevents two others from killing eachother, and Moirailgence, where two individuals keep themselves stable by way of taking care of the others mental health. Earth has no such systems in place.”

“Why should we?” Robert asks, sneering at her. “Your entire way of life is built on conquest and warfare!”

“Yes, it Was,” She says. “We’re moving past that, but it doesn’t mean that we haven’t seen the disastrous results that emerged because of it. These systems are there, and they’re stable, for a REASON. And that reason is what you see in the SGC- a Support Structure. Family.” She says, “The way I see it, it’s a miracle that the SGC managed to stabilize in the way it did, when the rest of your military branches are in a much worse state.”

“What’s that!?” Robert asks- growling.

“You treat your soldiers with a Job well Done and a Pat on the Back after each engagement with the enemy, Robert Kinsey,” Mikari says, voice growing cold. “You prevent them from forming romantic entanglements among those who know what they’re going through. You barely give them the emotional support they need to survive in the field, and even less so when they leave it.”

Hoo. Boy. That’s a lot to take in.

“Even when you have officers who barely face danger coming down with Post Traumatic Stress Disorders, and then discharge them without any form of support structure to keep them sane afterwards, what do you expect happens?” Mikari continues. “Those who face dangers day in and day out like at the SGC keep doing their job and despite everything they go through, bounce back sometimes stronger than ever, it’s because they have friends, family, and co-workers who have gone through everything they have.” She takes a breath, then says, “And when you have a loss that hits as hard as a cherished co-worker dying in the line of fire, not through sheer chance or random, bad luck, but through a WILLING CHOICE to throw themselves at another person to SAVE THEIR LIFE,” she takes another breath, punctuating it. “Of course people are going to be sad. Of course they’re going to MOURN. But using that loss as a means of just tearing down their support structures and their very way of life? You’re not rewarding them for a job well done, you’re *ripping out their support structures* and you are telling them their suffering doesn’t mean anything to you because you were NOT on the FRONT LINES living with them and sharing their experiences and ALL THAT DOES, Mister Woolsey, Vice President Kinsey?” She narrows her eyes. “All that does is make you their enemy. And believe me, you do not want people with that much stored up trauma making an enemy out of you.”

And with that, she sits back down, calmly unbuttoning and buttoning the top button on her dress shirt over and over again like a nervous habit.

Woolsey looks like he’s just had his private files ripped out of a notebook and shredded, Robert seems... unimpressed. How disappointing. You were actually feeling rather moved by all of that.

“I...” You cough. “I think we should take that as a breaking point, what do you say, folks?”

Francis nods, and quickly, he, Woolsey, and miss Aiikho leave. Robert hangs back, though.

“You can’t possibly be taking their side!” He hisses.

“I need time to absorb this, Bob,” you say. “She made some good points about our Military’s failings.”

“What do you-” He shakes his head. “It’s a CON JOB! They’re distracting us from the bigger picture! We may not have much time! The longer these people are-”

“Relax!” You interrupt. “All I’m saying is, at the moment, I need to consider everything I’ve heard, and give everyone the benefit of the doubt, Yourself Included, before I make any decisions. I need to know more about all of this.”

“I think you know all you need to know,” Robert says, “and that includes WHY you’re here.”

“I’m here, Bob,” you narrow your eyes at him. “Because the people of this nation elected me to run THEIR country, not the whole damn Galaxy, and most certainly not TWO of them! And, Bob,” you lean in close. “This is MY office. Not Yours. No matter what you may think you did to make this happen, do you EVER, for ONE SECOND, forget that.”

Bitterly, Robert Kinsey says, “Yes, Mister President.”

“Now let’s take a break,” you say, and Kinsey leaves.

You’re beginning to see why Miss Aiikho was so pissed off at him.


 

Over the next few hours, Woolsey, Francis, Kinsey, and Mikari argue back and forth over this and that.

And then?

“And both Colonel O'Neill and Major Carter have demonstrated an alarming tendency to let interpersonal relationships cloud their decision making process.”

“They have a right to their feelings. Unless, of course, you're suggesting, uh, some kind of inappropriate relationship here?”

Woolsey shakes his head ‘no,’ but your VP...

And then? And then comes a piece of work you didn’t believe you’d ever hear coming from Kinsey’s mouth.

“Inappropriate, yes! That is exactly what he's suggesting. It's difficult to come away from these reports without the distinct impression that there is a LOT more going on between Colonel O'Neill and Major Carter than simple ‘friendship and respect’! Their CLONED, YOUNGER SELVES, have been seen engaging in a romantic relationship!!”

“While playing host to two mated Tok’ra,” Mikari causally interjects.

“That’s EVEN WORSE!” Kinsey yells.

You look at Woolsey, “That’s not actually that much worse, is it?”

He nods to that. “I don’t see any problem with discharged military members engaging in any fraternization that their professional lives have been consistently proven, on record, to have never perform.”

“Please,” Kinsey scoffs. “We all know they’re sleeping with each other off world where nobody can see them.”

“...Bob,” you frown, “remember what I said about opinions versus facts earlier?”

“Fine, you want evidence?” Kinsey says, “A Mission report from a scientist when Colonel O’neill went missing not too long ago! A Scientist suffereing from Major Carter being extremely unreasonable because of his disappearance!”

“And where is that report?” You ask. “I want evidence, in my face. Not hearsay.”

“I-” Kinsey stops.

“There isn’t one that I am aware of,” Woolsey says, glancing annoyed at Kinsey. “And I would appreciate it if you’d not continue to make stuff up, Mister Vice President.” To you, he says, “Every report I retrieved from that mission showed Major Carter upset, yes, but not to the point of taking it out on her teammates as Vice President Kinsey suggests.”

“If there isn’t a report, then,” you say, “I think I’ve heard enough. Bob, Woolsey, you can leave. Francis, Miss Aiikho, I’d like a word before you leave?”

Kinsey gives you such a sour look, you’d think he was sucking a rotten egg.

“Yes, Mister President?” Francis asks once they’ve left.

“With Bob out of the room,” you say, “now, what’s this about a treaty negotiation, because I feel as if the details of that have been ignored so far.”

“Of course,” Mikari Aiikho says, nodding. “However, I’d like to make one last case for the defense, as it were, as well as play Devil’s Advocate of a sort.”

“I’m intrigued,” you say. “Carry on.”

“Hammond and the SGC have done their very best,” she says, “and under the circumstances, it’s admirable that they’ve accomplished what they have. However, I can understand the Political Aspect to the Vice President’s position.”

“Such as?” you ask.

“He wants to get in front about the Stargate and make it seem like we were trying to keep it a Secret forever, from the people of Earth while he was fighting to make it known. Paint himself as a hero, as it were...” She pauses, then says, “When Disclosure does finally come out, you have a choice to make, President Henry Hayes. You need the public’s confidence.”

“And Bob thinks that cleaning house at the SGC shows we’re in control,” you say.

“Exactly,” she nods. “You should be aware, however, that we’ve been preparing for that day for a very long time.”

“Is that so?” You muse.

She motions for Francis, and he says, “The reason the Stargate isn’t already public knowledge is because we felt that the public would be better reassured of learning about it after we’ve dealt with English and Anubis, and it’s to that degree that China, Russia, France, and Britain have agreed.” He pauses, then says, “The System Lords are formidable adversaries, yes, but we’ve held our own against them. Anubis and English are on a whole other level, and right now they’re busy murdering eachothers forces. When the victor of that bout is decided, one or both of them is going to come after us, on both sides of the Galactic Fence.”

“We’ve designed new weapons to defeat Anubis’ warriors should he prevail,” Mikari elaborates, “however, unfortunately, it seems as if Anubis is losing his fight, and is preparing to make a grand move. We’re not sure yet what it is, yet, however we have our suspicions that he is seeking something that the SGC has been working on finding as well.”

“The Lost City of Atlantis,” Francis says. “And yes, Sir, we know from inteligence gathered from other, paralel worlds that it was real once upon a time, and may still exist somewhere in our dimension, waiting to be used as a weapon by whoever finds it.”

“It was built by the same race of people who built the Stargates,” Mikari adds. “We’re certain that if Anubis gets his hands on it, he will be able to turn the tide back against English, and against the other System Lords, and against Earth, and and Against Alternia’s Galaxy as a whole.”

“And you expect me to do what with this information?” You ask.

“Kinsey will be pushing you to clean house as soon as possible if that is even necessary,” Mikari says. “And if you believe him, fine, go ahead. It’s a sound political move. However, what we request you to consider in this is that we are on the verge of a fight that may well threaten the Disclosure balance. If Anubis decides, for whatever reason, that Earth has the Lost City in its possession, whether SG-1 has found it or not, he will take his gathered forces and come here to take it.”

“And if that is the case, Sir,” Francis says, “it is in everyone’s best interests if General Hammond and SG-1 remain in place at the SGC when this transpires.”

“Bob might not give me the chance,” you say. “I can tell he’s got his mind set on this as a Day One Agenda. Or day two, or even day three-” you frown. “My point is, I get it. Hammond and SG-1 have done an extraordinary job. Sure, they’ve made mistakes. They’ve made enemies... but frankly, I don’t know if I can protect them if Bob uses the power of this Office to meddle directly.”

“We’ve considered that as well, Sir,” and suddenly, Mikari is holding a folder in her hands that definitely wasn’t there a minute ago. “While you’re perfectly in your rights to reject this suggestion, we do have a plan that may let you get out in front of whatever it is Robert Kinsey is planning.”

You hesitantly take the folder, even as Francis says, “As for my opinion, if Kinsey is doing what we think he’s doing, he’s going to want to suggest her anyways. He’s already made attempts at recruiting her into his inner circle as he’s done with Richard Woolsey. Unsuccessful attempts, I might add.”

You look into the folder, and crack a smile as you see a certain face shine back at you.

“Elizabeth Weir,” you say, approving. “I remember Bob ranting about how she’d turned down an opportunity to support him in the Primaries. He was trying to be civil about her ‘perfectly reasonable reasons’ for doing it, but he was ticked off. I can see him trying to recruit her again, especially for something like the SGC. It’s the smart move. I know I’d consider it as my first option.”

“The best part is, she’s in town this weekend, Sir,” Francis says. “If you wish to make the inroads on this... now is the time.”

“I’ll consider it,” you say, closing the folder. “Now, as for those trade agreements?”

“Right” Mikari says, summoning another folder from thin air. “The details aren’t much different from what we’ve talked about with the other countries of your planet. Primarily, our shared ship designs...”

What follows after that is several hours worth of confusing trade treaties and you REALLY wish that hot shot ELIZABETH WEIR were here to help negotiate it already. You get the feeling she’s going to love meeting these Alternians.


 

Your name is Richard Woolsey, and you’re feeling as if you’ve made something of a mistake at some point somewhere.

You’ve done some surface research that Miss Aiikho implied she’d done and... you’re left wondering. Is she right? The facts do seem to imply that whenever wars happen, the soldiers returning home often have difficulty returning to a civilian life...

“Vice President Kinsey will see you know,” Sara says, and you enter the office.

“Would you like a drink?” Kinsey asks, calmly pouring himself a drink.

“No, thank you,” you say.

“That was nice work today, Richard,” Kinsey appraises.

“Really? I got the distinct feeling it didn’t go according to plan at all,” you say. “In fact, I’ve started to question more about our own Government’s practices outside of the SGC where there should logically be more civilian oversight than the SGC has.”

“Please, she was making shit up out of her ass,” Kinsey chuckles. “Oh well, it doesn’t matter.”

“It doesn’t?” You ask.

“Nah, the President will come around,” Kninsey says, taking a sip of his drink.

“I didn’t get that impression, Mister Vice President. In fact, I sensed the exact opposite,” you say.

Kinsey chuckles. “Today was just a formality. Don’t get me wrong, the job you did was vital. The President has to appear to be hearing both sides, considering his position. But... he’ll see things my way eventually.” He nods. “Yes, he definitely will.”

“And if he doesn’t?” You ask.

Kinsey’s chuckles turn dark, “Things happen.”

Wh- What?

“What is that supposed to mean?”

Kinsey eyes you, “It means you chose the right side, Richard, joining the NID. One way or another, I promise you, I will win this one, and those Alternian brats will be cowering beneath my heel.”

You feel extremely troubled.


 

You find General Francis Maynard in an ill lit, two chair room in the Pentagon not too long after that.

“General,” you greet curtly.

“Mister Woolsey,” he greets similarly curt.

“Thank you for seeing me on such short notice,” you say.

“I take it the Vice President doesn’t know about this?” Maynard asks.

“No, and I’d like to keep it that way,” you say.

Maynard observes you as he motions for you to take a seat. He looks concerned, and amused as he asks, “What do you want?”

“I... was thinking about the things said about the Alternate Timeline in which Robert Kinsey was President,” you say, “and as I was thinking on them, despite his objections during our meeting earlier today, he said something to me just a little while ago.”

“Go on,” Maynard nods for you to do so.

“I want to warn you, I think the Vice President may be involved with people who think they can get away with anything. I believe they even may be involved with the attempted assassination on his own life to get what they want.”

“You do realize the seriousness of what you’ve said here, yes?” Maynard asks.

“Yes, Sir.” You take a breath. “Look, no matter what you or Miss Aiikho or anyone at the SGC might think of me, I consider myself to be a Man of Integrity. I took the job with the NID because I strongly believe in Civilian Oversight of top secret military operations-”

“Mister Woolsey-” he tries to interrupt.

“I know I don’t have any proof, Sir,” you plow on ahead, “but I’m starting to question whether those to whome I’ve sworn allegiance are as honorable as I had hoped they would be.”

General Maynard observes you for a moment, then says, “You’re a resourceful man, Richard Woolsey. if you think there’s proof out there, find it.” And then he gets up to leave.


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 18TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 07/28/0004.

The Red Eye Flight back to Colorado Springs leaves you tired, yet paradoxically wired. Your elevator ride down Cheyenne Mountain to the SGC leaves your foot tapping against the floor in anticipation.

You are Risking a LOT on this bet.

And then you wait outside Hammond’s office as the Secretary calls into the office. A moment later, you hear the sharp ring of the phone receiver hitting the cradle, and you’re told to go in.

“General,” you try to greet as cordially as you can.

Hammond looks at you skeptically, and then says, “This must be very important for you to have come all this way despite everything going on in Washington right now, given what Miss Aiikho’s told me of yesterday’s stunt.”

“I know you have no reason to trust me, General,” you say, closing the door behind you. “That’s why I felt I had to come in person.”

Hammond muses, then says, “Sit down.”

You do so.

A moment passes, then you say, “I take great pride in my work, General. My job demands meticulous research, and above all else, Impartiallity in its Execution. My aim has always been to present an air-tight argument, and a point of view for consideration by those I serve with no personal agenda of my own whatsoever.”

“Get to the point,” Hammond says, curtly.

“I stand by my case against you and your personnel, despite what I‘m about to say,” you warn him.

“I hope you don’t expect that to gain my respect,” he says.

“No,” you say, “but... I expect you to at least hear me out even if it sounds like I’m not getting to a point immediately, as a courtesy?”

“Very well,” Hammond nods.

You lean forwards, and begin to ask about what Hammond remembers about the assassination attempt on Then-Senator Kinsey.

“I remember it well,” Hammond says. “Considering Colonel O’neill was offworld when the frame-job happened. Your point?”

“Let’s just say, I’ve recently...” you frown. “Come to suspect, to a point bordering on belief, that those behind that rogue element of the NID may not have been eliminated. I fear they may have connections to the Vice President that survived even that assassination attempt.”

“Splinter cells within splinter cells,” Hammond nods. “We’ve considered the possibility, and as such, this isn’t exactly news to us.”

“No, I suppose it wouldn’t...” You frown. “I’m sorry to say that it is to me. I'm very surprised by the implications of this, and I want to do something about it if I can. You’ve all managed to keep the Senator off your backs for so long,” you say, “especially after you yourself were temporarily removed from office. You have to have something on him that I can present as evidence to his ties to illegal activities.”

“And what makes you think, if we had such information, I would hand it over to you?” Hammond asks.

“You have connections, General,” you say. “If my own ears to the ground are right, you’ve been preparing for the new Presidency for years already. There’s no other reason that Mister Bregman’s documentary team is staying on to record the SGC out of your own pocket.” You pause, then add, “There’s also the fact that I’m sure you’ve considered doing just that very thing before I actually stepped into this office for the first time.”

Hammond looks you over for a moment, then sighs. He opens a drawer, tossing a few things out of it before retrieving a large yellow envelope that he hands to you.

“That’s not the only copy,” he advises, as you pull out a blue plastic floppy disk. “I have three personally that I’m willing to admit to owning, and that’s the only local copy I have on Base.”

“Why haven’t you given this to anyone before now?” you ask.

“Trust is hard to come by, Mister Woolsey,” Hammond says. “The NID have compromised the security of this base many times, to the point our operational security evolved to let them only ever access things we wanted them to access. Beyond that, I’ve tested the possibility out by checking with Seers local and in Alternia. None of them said it was the right time... until one girl with crimson eyes told me that 'A blind Sheppard who had the wool shaved out of his eyes' would come pay me a visit.”

“What?” You blink.

“I don’t trust you, Woolsey. Not yet. Do the right thing with that disk, and we’ll see.” Hammond concludes.

“Thank you, General,” you say, placing the disk into a secure, secret spot in your briefcase.


 

Another flight later, and you’ve returned to DC, feeling even more energized as you head into the White House and wait outside the Oval Office.

“Yes sir,” Holly says into the phone, then hangs up. “The President will see you now,” she tells you.

“Thank you,” you say as she escorts you to the door and lets you in.

President Hayes sits at his desk, looking tired as he closes a classified dossiere. It’s the normal kind, though, not labeled with SGC insignia. “Is there something you’d like to add to your report, Mister Woolsey?” He asks.

“Yes, sir,” you say, approaching.

Hayes takes off his glasses, and leans back in his chair, an expectant look on his face.

“I...” You take a moment, steel your thoughts. Come now, Richard! You’re not a school boy! “As I'm sure you're aware, the NID does not exactly have a spotless record. For several years, a group of rogue agents operated inside of its ranks. They were acting on behalf of a cabal of international business interests, intent on acquiring alien technology for their own profit.”

“One could only hope,” Hayes says, bitterly.

“Sir?” You ask, confused.

“I know they're out there, Mr. Woolsey,” he clarifies. “What I'm saying is one can only hope that money was their chief motivation. However, I doubt the type of person who is behind the NID is as short-sighted enough for that given what he must know. In light of the new reality that Stargate presents, there are aspirations beyond mere financial greed that could be much worse.”

“I agree,” you say.

Hayes considers you for a moment, then asks, “So, you’re here to tell me the Vice President is in league with them still?”

“It does make one wonder what Vice President Kinsey could have possibly offered them in exchange for the price on his head,” you say.

“Rhetoric question,” Hayes says. You both know he means the Stargate Program, and control over it.

“The Vice President brought key financing to your campaign victory. I just hope it didn't come at too high a cost.” You say, before laying Hammond’s copy of the blackmail on the desk, and turn to leave. You pause, though, to add, “I also hope that one day, History shows that I tried to do the right thing.”

“By whose version of History though, Mister Woolsey?” Hayes asks.

“Indeed,” you agree with a nod, and exit the office.

You hope you’ve done the right thing.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 19TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 07/29/0004.

Your name is Jack O'neill, and on one FINE Friday morning, early early, ear-lai in tha mornin', you're awoken by a frantic phone call from one John Sheppard, Jade Harley, and Argo Lalonde. All of them, talking frantically over the phone at once.

Something about something breaking during the night while they were sleeping together and making a mess? You can barely hear what any of them are saying with how much they're talking over eachother. You bark out an interjecting "Hey! Listen!" and then mumble out a tired "Don't panic over it. Just pretend it didn't happen for the moment. If you're worried Roxy's going to flip out over-" you meant to say the assumed BROKEN VASE but in your tired state you just said "it" instead. Then, you doubled down on it and added, "Head over to Alternia for the Weekend until you know for sure."

And that seemed to appease the three of them and they thanked you for the advice. Geeze. Seriously... Jade's powers of shrinking and expanding things striking out during the middle of the night shattering a vase? Perfectly understandable that it could happen at some point in time no matter how many precautions are taken.

Tired though you were, the sun not even risen yet, you decide to get ready for the day.

As you prepare to start shaving the stubble that grew overnight, your phone rings yet again.

Carter this time, inquiring about mission uniform colors. You decide Green is a good color for the day, and she agrees, stating she'll pass it along to the others.

You're in the middle of shaving, just as the sun starts to rise, working on this week's SUPER CROSSWORD, when Daniel calls, talking about ANCIENT REPOSITORIES OF KNOWELDGE and something something you shoved the phone under the running tap water because you're not at 100% capacity for this right now.

You put the phone back to your ear just to hear Daniel say, completely unaware of the phone thing you just did, "So yeah, that's going to be today's mission and- Oh, hold on, Sam's calling." And with that he hung up.

Cool.

You idle off and on working on your crossword as you drive to the base, taking the route full of stop lights that you KNOW aren't calibrated to the right times.

Hrm, a Three letter word for an Atomic Weight of Boron?

... F. A. T.

Yeah, that works.

Celestial Body? That's a tougher one.

You might pass it off to Jonas if he's willing to give it a go.

You arrive at the SGC's elevators at about the same time John, Jade, and Argo do, all of them looking extremely nervous with their bags packed full of stuff. Looks like they might be planning for a longer trip than just a weekend. Yeesh, how expensive was that vase anyways?

You just give them a reassuring smile as you head down to Level 28. They smile back, and that's all anyone needs to do during the ride down, until you pass Level 27, at which point Jade says, "Thank you, Uncle Jack, for not judging about...." she trails off, nervous.

"It's fine," you say, reaching a hand up to your mouth, "My lips-" Zip motion, lock, twist, and throw away the invisible key. "Are sealed."

That garners some fresh smiles, and a trio of grateful nods, and thus, you four disembark to head off in different-

Oh, there's Carter, Teal'c, and Jonas.

"You're fifteen minutes late," Jonas observes.

"Ran a bunch of red lights," you excuse it. "Worked on my crossword in the meantime."

Carter snatches the Crossword as you all walk up to the Conference room. "The Atomic Weight of Boron is Ten. You wrote FAT?"

"It's a mass," you say.

Teal'c simply hums in agreement, and a moment later, you've arrived in the conference room.

Daniel is there, already suited up for the rare off world mission he takes these days.

"There you are," he says, exasperated. "You realize we're on a tight schedule, right?"

"The Red Lights can't be helped," you excuse the delay.

Hammond enters the room, talking briefly with Jade, who gives a brief wave and a smile to her Dear Dad Daniel before skipping off down to the control room with a "Walter! Dial Alternia!" A moment later, you hear the Stargate start dialing up.

"SG-1," Hammond greets. "Glad to see everyone made it."

"Red Lights mean stop, General," you say. "Even if they're going on for way too long and nobody's coming the other way, I gotta obey the law and all that."

"Of course," Hammond motions for you all to take your seats. "Doctor Jackson?"

"Right, so," Daniel, of course remains standing as he hands out a bunch of folders. "Several Years ago Jack stuck his head in a device and got an entire Repository of Ancient Knowledge downloaded into his head. Of course, we've studied the device and found that it transfers everything in one go and doesn't leave anything behind, so it's useless for tapping into on its own."

You get yours and you briefly scan through it- there's a photo of a large statue of a man with his head cut off on one page. Ominous, looks less like a cut and more like someone took a laser to it. It's all sort of old and glassed and melted looking.

"Anyways, so recently we realized that Anubis is looking for one of these repositories- why?" Daniel continues, "Well, probably for the same reason we've been looking for a new one- to find the Lost City."

You blink and look up at Daniel, asking the obvious, "You're NOT expecting me to stick my head into it, are you?"

"No, that'd be much too dangerous," Daniel says, "and also pointless. We want to recover a device full of knowledge and take it back to research on properly."

"So, to summarize," Jonas says, "find a Repository, Steal it before Anubis does, and find the Lost City hidden somewhere in that database?"

"Basically, yeah," Daniel nods.

"Okay, glad we're on the same page," you clap your hands. "When do we leave?"

The sound of the WAA WAA KAWOOSH lets Hammond give you an answer, "As soon as you've geared up and the connection to Alternia is Terminated."

"Alright then," you say.


 

SG-3 comes through the Gate with you to hold the position as backup in case Anubis shows up.

It should be pretty obvious. There's not a forest around for miles, just a large plane, wide, open, very HILLY field of grass, and one giant headless stone statue that's a lot bigger in person even at a distance than in photos.

Seriously, thing might even be as big as the St. Louis Arch.

Jonas leads the way to the thing's base, and it's a HIKE.

You work more on your crossword in the mean time...

Hmm... You'll have to corrupt the spelling a bit to fit the spaces on this Celestial Body hint's existing intersecting words, but you think you have your answer.

UMATHRMN.

Brilliant.

You're stuck waiting around the very large base of the statue while Daniel, Jonas, and Carter scan for the Repository thing.

In the end, you only make it show up because you yourself leaned against a part of a wall and WOOSH it shifts under you. You back away VERY QUICKLY to avoid getting head sucked.

"Well! That works!" Daniel says. "Let's see if we can get it out of the wall."

Work begins on trying to separate it...

Only, then you get a radio message from SG-3, Al'kesh Inbound.

"Hurry it up, kids!" you order.

There isn't time, though, you're going to have to do this again, aren't you??

"I'll do it!!" Daniel volunteers.

"And who translates when you go Ancient!?" You ask.

Before Daniel can argue back that maybe Jonas could translate for you, the kid himself has gone up to the device and it's grabbing his head and-

"GAAAAH!!!"

"Oh For Cryin' Out Loud!" you swear as Jonas collapses as the device releases him. "Carter! Rig it to blow!!"

"Right!!" She says as you and Teal'c fight to lift Jonas up off the ground. When did he get so heavy built for being a nerd type? Almost as much muscle on him as Teal'c at this point, you think.

You succeed, though, get Jonas off the ground, and SG-1 is retreating away from the statue as Carter blows the C-4.

KA-BOOM!

You risk glancing back and see a bit of masonry from the destroyed neck falling away from the top. Yeesh, how much C-4 did you put on that thing, Carter??

An Al'kesh swoops in over head, trying to fire at you. The ground shakes and rumbles, and you tumble, Jonas landing on the ground with a grunt. He's got his eyes open now, atleast, darting about confused as you heft him back up and get him moving back to the Gate.

You're like sitting ducks out here.

But, you manage it, you get back to the Gate that SG-3 has helpfully dialed ahead, and you're all rushing through it before an Al'kesh can blow you off the map.

And then, you're back in the safety of the SGC, Hammond and Lam waiting at the bottom of the ramp.

"What happened?" Hammond asks.

"Jonas got head sucked!" You explain.


 

"So..." You begin during the debriefing. "Have we heard from the Asgard yet?"

"Unfortunately, no," Carter shakes her head. "They haven't responded through the Hall or from our other means of contacting them. We're pretty sure we're on our own with this."

"Okay, so..." Daniel begins, "I wasn't here for it the first time but how long does Jonas have exactly?"

"Before her demise, Ka'turnal once remarked that Kelwonan physiology is different from Earth physiology with regards to brain structure, and Jonas Quinn is even more different than the rest of his people she observed," Teal'c says. "For Colonel O'neill, it happened fairly rapidly, for Jonas Quinn, it may be even faster, or perhaps slower."

"Essentially, we won't know until the symptoms hit," Hammond nods with grim reluctance. "As soon as Doctor Lam's cleared him, I want him with one of you at all times to observe, and watch for symptoms to develop."

"And when they do?" You ask.

"Start directing his focus towards the Lost City," Hammond decides. "Anubis is going to assume we found whatever it is he's looking for first, and come looking to start a fight with us."

"So, get the City, save the Earth again, no big deal," you nod.

"In the meantime," Hammond says, "I've received word that the President is pulling the trigger on a certain plan."

Around the table fell silence as that sinks in.

"We're doing this Now?" Carter asks at the same time you ask: "NOW??"

"Kinsey's pushing it," Hammond reports. "As far as I'm aware, the finer details of the wheel haven't yet be put into motion. He's only just reached out to Doctor Weir this morning."

Freaking....

"Okay," You say. "So what's the plan?"

"As far as I'm aware, you're to all report to duty as scheduled Monday Morning," Hammond pauses, then adds, "if I hear anything more, I'll send a group email suggesting a farewell party for Jonas, in case we can't get the Asgard's help, to schedule a follow up on the plan."

"My place," you volunteer. "Hell, I'll have Jonas just stay the weekend while we wait."

Farewell party? This is gonna SUCK.


 

Your name is DOCTOR ELIZABETH WEIR and you're in something of a sticky situation.

Your whole life has just been uprooted with the knowledge that THE STARGATE PROGRAM is even a thing that exists.

And not only that, you seem caught in the middle of a power play between President Hayes and Vice President Kinsey, who doesn't even know that the President has confirmed what you've already known thanks to the sudden appearance of a FLOPPY DISK in your papers several months ago. Its timely intervention gave you the courage to deny the opportunity to back a Presidential Candidate.

You haven't made a decision yet as to whether or not you're going to go through with this on a full time basis or not, though. All of this is just...

It's something you're not entirely sure what to think of.

...Well, beyond the fact that, regardless of the insanity of ALL of this, you'd really, REALLY like to see this Stargate in action personally. Just once. Once is fine, really.


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 20TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 07/30/0004.

Your name is JACK O'NEILL, and you groan awake yet again to the sound of your phone going off.

You answer it groggily. "Y'llo?"

"JACK O'NEILL!" Yells one ROXY EGBERT. "YOU TELL ME RIGHT THIS INSTANT WHY JOHN AND JADE STOLE NOT ONLY A FULL BED FRAME AND MATTRESS FROM THEIR ROOM, BUT THEY TOOK THE SHEETS AND PILLOWS TOO!!"

"...What?" You blink. "I don't know what you're talking about." Sheets? Did they take those to cover up the vase?

Yes, that seems like a reasonable assumption to your pretty much still-half-dreaming state of mind.

"But if I did," you say, "clearly the sheets and pillows follow the bed. Can't take a mattress anywhere without sheets and pillows."

"....Are you even awake right now?" Roxy asks.

"No I am not, Madame Egbert," you drawl out, and then promptly hang up.

Four in the freaking morning.

...You're not getting back to sleep any time soon, are you?


 

You're in the middle of mixing up the breakfast of CHAMPIONS, Oatmeal and Bacon, when Jonas stumbles in from the guest room, inquiring something in a language that is definitely not English, or anything the Stargate nanites translate easily:

The language of SLEEP DEPRIVATION.

You catch enough that you realize he's asking about breakfast, and so tell him.

With a shrug, he heads off and gets ready for a day of sitting around, probably doing nothing but getting ones affairs in order.

Breakfast happens, and soon you're helping Jonas write down a will of where his things go in case the Asgard can't help him and he dies from information overload.

"You know," you say about ten minutes in, "I offered Skaara the guest room here so he could stay if he wanted to... but he declined and stayed on base most of the time."

"That seems like Skaara," Jonas muses with a nod. "How did that wedding go, by the way?"

"Oh, you know, being the best man at an Abydosian wedding," you chuckle dryly, "it is how it is. At least this time we knew it was happening and not like back when Daniel and Sha're hooked up."

"That's nice," Jonas nods.

"...So, I gotta ask," you say. "Why'd you do it, Jonas?"

"I've got a big brain," Jonas shrugs, not really denying knowing what you're talking about. "I figured... maybe something different about the way my mind is wired up would make things work differently." He pauses, then says, "Besides, one of us had to do it, and I'm the most expendable of the team."

"Don't say stuff like that," You reach over and put your hand on his shoulder. "Don't ever say that again, alright? Nobody is 'most expendable' on my team, you got that, Jonas?"

He nods, then says, "Yeah, I got it."

"Alright then," you say. "Let's get back to work."

About an hour or two into that lovely way to handle a Saturday morning, Carter drops by, with a knock at the door.

"I didn't miss Hammond's email or anything, did I?" You ask upon seeing her at the front door.

"No, actually, funny thing I was in the area and thought I'd drop by and see if I could help out with anything," Carter answers.

"Alright," and thus you let her in.

At that point in time, Jonas is so buried in the paper work that he barely even recognizes Carter's presence with a small and curt wave.

So... you get her a beer and you chat in the kitchen.

"So... things are going down," you summarize.

"Yep," Carter nods.

"Think we'll pull it off this time?" you ask.

"Who knows," Carter shrugs. "I hope so, but... It's concerning we might not."

"Best not think about that," you say.

"Yeah, I suppose, but-" Carter is interrupted by the doorbell ringing.

You open the door and find Janet stumbling in on her cane, complaining about idiots who couldn't just let well enough be.

"Janet?" You ask once she's given you a breath to interject. "What's going on? I didn't miss a memo or something?"

"No, Jack, it's not that," she scowls, hobbling over into the living room where Jonas is working, and sits down in a chair with a huff loud enough to get Jonas to snap out of the Paperwork funk and pay  attention. "Sam, Jonas," she greets. "Sorry for barging in like this, but I saw Sam's car parked and I thought I should drop in to let you all know."

"Know what?" Sam asks.

"I took my Re-evaluation exams yesterday, and got the results back this morning," Janet explains. "I passed my Knowledge exams, but I failed my physical and practical. Apparently my hand started shaking while I was working on the practice dummy and-" She takes a shuddering breath. "They're not going to clear me to resume serving at the SGC as anything but a supervisor going forwards. As long as I never enter an operating theater again, there won't be any problems, but..."

"Damn," you grimace. "That's horrible."

"It's what happens when you take a staff blast to a major nerve cluster in the shoulder, I suppose," Janet sighs.

"Well," Carter offers, "at least you can still be the friendly face during checkups?"

"Yes, there is that, Sam" Janet says. "I'm still cleared for everything except major operations. It's... it's frustrating, though. I survive all of that and yet I still can't do everything I once could? Hammond would have every right to fire me on the spot, as soon as he finds out."

"Hammond wouldn't do that," you say. "I wouldn't either, if I were in his shoes."

"I might as well have died, Jack," she says, frowning. "My entire life up to that point..."

"You're still healing," Jonas says. "Honestly, it seemed stupid to me that you were going to be taking an exam this soon in the first place. Give it a few months and maybe you'll be healed up enough to get back to it."

"Thanks, Jonas," Janet smiles at him. "And you too, Jack."

"If it's any consolation," Jolinar chimes in, "I think you'll do as wonderful of a job as always regardless of whatever job you find yourself filling in the SGC."

"And I agree on that," Carter nods.

"Thanks, you two," Janet opens her mouth to say more when there's a combination knock and doorbell ring.

What now?

You open the door to find Teal'c and Daniel, box of beer bottles and a box of doughnuts in hand, respectively. "Let me guess," you say, "you were in the neighborhood?"

Daniel just laughs nervously and says something about going to visit Janet then seeing her car and... You KNOW that's bull because Janet doesn't live anywhere near you on the route from that Doughnut shop.

"Cassandra informed us you would be hosting guests," Teal'c answers properly.

"Thank you, T," You say, letting them in.

You're about to close the door when you see HAMMOND'S CAR of all cars round the corner of your street and come in your direction, so you just stand there and wait for him to arrive.

Now you KNOW you've all missed a memo.

Hammond has a grim look on his face as you fetch him a chair from the kitchen, and place it down for him in the living room on, since, well, you've run out of available seating in there for the moment.

"So, General-" Janet begins.

"Please, just George, Janet," he says. "I've been relieved of duty at the SGC."

"...Well, that was fast," you say. "Weir took the job then?"

"She did," Ham- George. George says with a nod. "As far as I've been informed, she's going to allow you all to finish the mission to find the Lost City, however. So before any of you ask, you're still to report for active duty Monday as we previously discussed."

"This is a huge gamble Hayes is taking," Daniel says. "When Kinsey finds out what we're planning he's going to try to stop it."

"He'll just dig his ass into an even bigger grave if he does," you say, taking a swig of beer.

"Indeed," Teal'c rumbles. "Kinsey's own greed will become his undoing, as has been the case of many Goa'uld System Lords and Alternian Generals."

"As my last act as General of the SGC, I've already ordered Walter to dial out to Alternia and our Allies to inform them of the change of administration," George continues. "Furthermore, while it's likely not going to go through until we've gotten rid of Kinsey, I've already nominated my replacement, should Weir decide to not stay on full time."

"Really, Sir?" You ask. "Who're we getting stuck with?"

"That would be you, Jack."

"...Come again?" you blink.

"I've put in for a promotion for you," Hammond says, and you're sticking with it because he's definitely your senior in this moment. "If we all make it out of this alive and in one piece, you've got the job, Brigadier General Jack O'neill."

"...That's a lot to take in, Sir," you say. "Do you mind if I think on it for a bit?"

"Of course," Hammond nods. "I've got a flight to catch in a few hours, taking me to DC. I'll be speaking with the President in person. I have a suspicion that Kinsey is already planning a similar flight down."

"Good luck, General," you all say something vaguely along those lines, even Jonas, who fumbles up somewhere and says something entirely different from "good"- or atleast, the English version of it.

"Yup, that was Ancient," Daniel nods knowingly. "That's... a lot slower than it took for Jack to start saying words differently, right?"

"Definitely," Janet nods.

"We'd better get back to the will documentation, then," Jonas frowns.


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 22ND, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/01/0004.

Your name is Elizabeth Weir, and there it is. The Stargate. You just stare out the conference room window while dealing with all sorts of personal life related calls before finally noticing the reflection of someone standing behind you in the mirror.

You turn around and signal for one minute before wrapping up the call and ending it. "Hi, I'm Doctor Elizabeth Weir."

"Doctor Daniel Jackson," he says, shaking your hand when you offer it.

"It's a pleasure meeting you," You say. "I've read so much about this place... It's a little scary feeling out of place like this. I get the feeling most people don't like that I've replaced Hammond."

"It's like a family down here," Doctor Jackson says. "Literally, in a lot of cases, metaphorically in others. Even if most of us understand why this is happening, there's still that little bit of resentment for you replacing our family head. And even if the whole Military Leader to Civilian Leader jump wasn't included as a factor and you were some other General we didn't know, you'd be getting the same vibes."

"I thought you were Archaeology, not Anthropology," you muse.

"Oh, I've dabbled here and there," Doctor Jackson says. "Once dated a girl in Highschool, ah, one Marie Sutherland, who was planning on studying the field. Wonder what she's up to these days?" He shakes his head. "Anyways. Welcome to the SGC. It's quite a view up here, isn't it?"

"Despite being twenty-plus stories down underground?" you smile. "Yes, very."

"You're going to stick up with your end of the bargain, right?" Doctor Jackson asks.

"Let you find the Lost City lest Anubis decide to show his face and attack Earth because he thinks we stole it?" you nod. "I've enacted the protocol to halt any new missions, but not end ongoing ones until they've completed. I hear we have a few diplomatic negotiations going on right now, and the Diplomat in me refuses to renege on that and those promises being made."

"Speaking of Diplomats..." Doctor Jackson begins. "You met Mikari or Jolinar yet?"

"Miss Aiikho? Yes, we shared a, ah, 'flight' down from DC," you smile. "The Prometheus is quite the ship. I hear there's another one being worked on?"

Doctor Jackson nods curtly. "So I hear as well."

"As for Miss Jolinar and Major Carter, that was going to be my next stop once I finished with my morning calls," you say. "Care to join me?"

"Of course," he nods.

And so he leads you on a merry jaunt through the SGC, placating the masses by showing his co-operation with the new management, as it were. Flying the flag, you suppose.

You arrive in what you're told is the QUANTUM MIRROR LAB, finding Major Carter there standing to the side with Doctor Rodney Mckay as they watch Jonas Quin assembling some device with parts that seem to have come through the Quanum Mirror. There are also two girls here helping him build whatever it is by handing him parts as he asks for them. The girls are identical save that one of them has cat ears and a tail.

You- what?

"Uh.... did we lose Jonas to the Ancient Tongues already?" Doctor Jackson asks.

"Vaguely. I have no idea what the hell he's even building at this point," Doctor Mckay says. "He's still speaking English for the most part but-"

Jonas spits out the name for something in... 'Ancient'? You suppose?... and the human girl hands the part over with a repeat of the same name.

"-The Part names are in Ancient," Doctor Mckay concludes.

"It's really interesting watching this in person, this time," Major Carter remarks. "Jude and Janet watched Jack for the most part when he got like this the last time. He definitely knows what it is he's building even if he doesn't know what it is he's building."

"He doesn't know what he's building?" You ask.

"More like he's just 'not sure yet' to-" Doctor Mckay stops, blinks, and then offers his hand. "You must be Doctor Weir. I'm Doctor Rodney Mckay head of the Mirror Research Lab."

"Pleasure to meet you, Rodney," you greet, shaking his hand.

"That's Keiko and Silica, with the Cat ears," Doctor Mckay points at the girls. "Apparently Jonas' brain made the connection that he could just request parts for whatever it is he needs to build rather than hunt down the raw materials and try to jury rig something."

"You know, it reminds me a bit of the Gravity Shield Generators Jude built to deal with the black hole time dilation effects," Major Carter says. "I'm wondering if Jonas isn't building some kind of add-on modification device for something like it?"

"Maybe," Silica says, standing up and meandering over. Her ears flick, and her tail swishes. They're real. Oh god they're actually REAL. "I'm getting that same vibe too, but it looks a bit more related to the propulsion engines Aincrad has, just scaled down a bit in miniature. There's a ZPM cradle included in the parts list. So we'll definitely be going somewhere in a hurry, I'd imagine."

"What's a ZPM?" You ask, not familiar with the term.

"A Zed.P.M. is a Zero Point Energy Module," Mckay explains. "Basically imagine an Energizer battery except it holds an entire pocket dimension's worth of power inside."

"Interestingly," Silica says, "he's only requested exactly only one ZPM for us to use. I'm not sure why. If this thing is going to draw enough power to need a ZPM fueling it, why not pack extras?"

"Maybe the Lost City has more in it?" Carter offers.

"Maybe," Silica shrugs. "At any rate, this is just parts order one. He's requested a couple of other things from the local SGC including a Naquadah reactor to be packed up for later. I sent Teal'c and Colonel O'neill to deal with that already." She says the later part to Doctor Jackson, who seemed ready to ask about it. "They should be back soon."

"Do we have a Gate Address for where-ever it is Mister Quinn thinks you're going yet?" you ask.

"Sort of," Carter offers you a crossword puzzle. "Jonas swiped this from Colonel O'neill over the weekend and wrote down two words in Ancient on it, in Sphere, Planet, and Label, Name respectively."

"'Praclarush Taonas,'" Doctor Jackson translates, "'Lost in Fire.'"

"A name doesn't exactly help us locate a planet though, does it?" You muse.

"We're working on it," Is the synchronized reply from all four of them.

That's... kind of neat that they managed that. You wonder if they rehearsed it or if it just happens naturally?


 

Your name is Colonel Jack O'neill, and as you finish setting up all of Jonas' requested supplies, you feel a disturbance in the force.

That is to say, you hear your name called up to the conference room over the base intercom.

You leave Teal'c to safe guard everything, and head up to find a slightly annoyed Weir trying to talk down an Irate V.P. Kinsey.

"Oh, if it isn't the so called 'hero of the hour'!" Kinsey frowns at you the moment you arrive. "I thought I ordered all missions shut down! But no, here you are going off, gallivanting around, just to do who knows what in the rest of the universe as if you've got cartwheel blank checks as your only license!"

"I believe the term you're looking for is 'carte blanch', Mister Vice President Sir?" You offer.

"I meant what I said, O'neill," Kinsey scowls.

"Well, okay," you say. "So what's this about, then?"

"What this is about is you assuming, without any evidence, that some enemy is actually going to come knocking on our doorstep because you beat him to some 'hidden wellspring of knowledge'!" Kinsey scoffs. "As if any such thing exists this time around. You're just making up shit to stay active while we restructure everything! You have no proof that Anubik, or whatever his name is, is coming to attack us! Infact, I'll say-"

The Gate Sirens go off as the Gate dials in.

"Excuse us for a moment, Vice President Kinsey," Weir says, and glances at you to join her downstairs.

You gladly do so as the WAA WAA KAWOOSH happens.

You get down to the control room as Walter reads the incoming IDC. "Master Bra'tac is requesting passage through," he says.

"Better open the Iris then," you say.

"Right," Weir nods to Walter, and he does such. You and Weir head into the Gate Room and wait for Bra'tac to step through.

"Colonel O'neill," Bra'tac greets once he emerges. The Gate shuts down a moment later

"Master Bra'tac," you say. "This is Doctor Weir, she's leading the SGC for the moment while Hammond deals with things elsewhere."

"So I was informed," Bra'tac nods in greeting to Weir. "An honor to meet you, Madam. Unfortunately, I come as the bearer of bad news. We've confirmed the worst, Anubis has withdrawn his forces from every conflict with English across the Galaxy and is amassing them not too far from this Solar System. Our spies indicate he plans to move to attack in Three Days."

"Figured as much," you say. "Good timing, though, Bra'tac. Happen to got any fleet movements on a crystal by any chance?"

With a slight smirk, Bra'tac retrieves such a crystal.


 

"I understand that time is short, so," You're once again Elizabeth Weir, and you decide to stay the course as you gather up SG-1 and everyone else involved in this mission in the Conference Room, "if this Evidence confirms suspicions, my decision to allow SG-1 to continue their search for the Lost City is justified and will stand."

"Please," Kinsey scowls, utterly fuming. "The timing of this is entirely suspect."

"We've been warning you that this kind of thing would be happening for months now," Major Carter speaks up. "The movement reports are all here on the Crystal Master Bra'tac brought us."

"Exactly, so let's look at the evidence first," you say, then nod to Bra'tac. "Please, Master Bra'tac."

Bra'tac brings up a map of the local most section of the galaxy to Earth. Fleets of Goa'uld ships are seen moving from everywhere they can to assemble far, far out from Earth.

"Estimates are that it will take Three Days for the fleet to become assembled, and move to attack," Bra'tac says.

"Three days from today is a Thursday," O'neill remarks once everything has been observed from the Crystal. "Thursday is not good for us. Now Friday. That's a good day."

"When isn't it?" Kinsey scowls. "I'll say this, the timing is impeccable. The moment we suspend Stargate operations you pull this out of your hat."

"Are you suggesting, Mister Vice President," O'neill asks, growing annoyed, "that we'd make something like this up wholesale?"

"Yes, Colonel, that's exactly what I'm suggesting," Kinsey raises his voice.

"Yes," Jonas Quinn gripes. "That's exactly what we do. We sit around all day writing fanfiction of reality where the Earth, no, the universe at large is constantly at risk! That's completely derentis!"

Everyone goes silent, looking at him.

"...What?" he asks, frowning.

"You said Derentis," O'neill says.

"What's Derentis?" Jonas asks.

"Insane, in Ancient," Doctor Jackson answers.

"Isn't that what I said?" Jonas asks. "The idea of us writing fanfiction of reality being threatened is derentis."

"You just said it again," Keiko says.

"No I didn't," Jonas counters.

"Yes, you did," Silica nods her head.

"No, I said 'derentis,' not 'derentis,'" Jonas insists.

"Jonas, please spell 'insane'?" Mckay asks.

"D. E. R. E. N. T. I. S.," Jonas answers.

"Now spell 'Derentis,'" Mckay insists.

"How do you even spell that?" Jonas asks.

"You just did," Mckay answers that. "Want me to repeat it back for you?"

"Point made!" You interject. "Look, let's make this simple." You look around at everyone. "We have a name for a location to lead us to the Lost City, yes? Focus on finding the Gate Address. You bring me that, I give the mission a go."

"Like Hell You Will!" Kinsey snaps.

"Mister Vice President," you snap in turn, drawing upon years of silencing dictators with your gazeand tone of voice alone. "You are out of line, and speaking out of turn. This is not your decision to make. I was put here to run this facility, and if you don't like it, you'll have to just live with the consequences."

Kinsey goes silent.

"In the mean time," Bra'tac says, rising from his chair. "I feel that we must secure as many ships as we can to rally to the defense of this planet against Anubis, should the City fail to be found. I will return to Chulak to begin that process."

"I will go as well," Teal'c says, rising similarly.

"I should return to Aincrad," Silica says. "If English is free of hassle from Anubis, he might decide to restart attacking Aincrad and Alfheim. I need to warn everyone," She looks at Keiko pointedly, who nods in return.

"I'll stay here and keep an eye on things," Keiko says. "I'll report back if things go weird. Good luck warning everyone."

"Thanks," Silica says.

"Alright then," Mckay says. "Lets find us a Gate Address."

"Get to work," you order with a nod.

"Weir, a word in private?" Kinsey demands rather than asks as everyone else scatters.

You head to what was once Hammond's office, and Kinsey slams the door shut, glaring furious nat you.

"What. The Hell. Was THAT?" He asks.

"I'm sorry?" You ask.

"You don't know SG-1 like I do!" Kinsey starts.

"This is my Call," you say. "SG-1-"

"ARE THE ONES!" Kinsey stomps his foot like a child. "They're the ones who Got us INTO THIS MESS IN THE FIRST PLACE!!"

"I don't see how-"

"I WANT THEM GONE, DOCTOR!" Kinsey demands. "I want them ALL GONE! You haven't figured that out yet!?"

"Oh, I've figured out quite a bit," you say, narrowing your eyes at him. You've been informed of quite a lot too. You really, really hope this trap the SGC and the President are playing out works.

"Well hallelujah for that!" Kinsey scoffs.

"Listen here," you say. "For the time being? This is my office, this is my chair, this is my desk. I was put here to do a very specific job by a very specific person, and by hell or high water am I going to do it until that same specific person tells me otherwise. I will make my decisions based on my perspective, and not how they fit into your agenda."

"You have no idea what my Agenda is," Kinsey snarls at you.

"I think I know more about it than you think I do," you say. "I've done my research. There's a reason I turned down your request to publicly back you during the Primaries." And it's spelled B.L.A.C.K.M.A.I.L.F.L.O.P.P.Y.

"You don't know anything about me then, Doctor," Kinsey snarls again, like the cornered animal he doesn't realize he is. "And if you think you do? You're not as smart as you think you are."

With that, he storms out of your office.

You sit down in the chair, and take a deep, calming breath.

Dictators. They're all the same, even the Aspiring ones.

You grab the phone and call Security. "Please inform V.P. Kinsey if he attempts to leave the base that the Surface's Elevator Doors are down for maintenance due to an unforeseen jam caused by a wasp's paper nest... Yes, thank you." You hang up, and exhale in relief. That's one pass code phrase set into motion.

You just hope the rest come as smoothly.

TO BE CONTINUED.

Chapter Text

Your name is Okurii Leijon, and you frown as you finish reading the letter Silica had delivered to you after giving her report of the situation in Milky Way.

"Thank you," you say. "It sounds like everything is under control for the moment. However..." You frown. "The size of the fleet is concerning. I'm not sure how powerful the Lost City's weapons could be, but we need to have a backup plan."

"You have something in mind?" Silica asks, tilting her ears in curiosity.

"Yes, actually," you nod. "Plan D requires us to have both Supergates under our control... So, what better time than now to take control of the Milky Way Gate?"

"You'll be sending Megaships through to help defend Earth?" Silica asks.

"We will," you nod. "The letter the other Cassandra asked you to relay to us confirms this is our best chance at doing it."

"I'll pass it along where I can," Silica nods. "Thank you, Ma'am."

"No, Silica, thank you," you say. "Stage one of Plan D is now underway."



o<--STARGATE SG-1-->o


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 23RD, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/02/0004.

"At."

Your name is Jack O'neill, and you blink as Jonas rips off your Earth Glyph patch and slams it onto the table in the cafeteria.

"Jonas?" You ask. "What's going on?"

"At," he points at the symbol again.

"Yes, it's shaped like an A, so?" You ask, frowning.

"I... Don't know?" Jonas frowns. "I look at it and I think 'At.'"

...Oh. Now that's something interesting.

"Just a second," you say, getting up from the table, and grabbing an empty plate and a bottle of ketchup.

You return, and draw another Gate Glyph on the plate- the two triangles pointing at eachother. "What's this?"

"Sh," Jonas says on instinct.

You wipe the plate with a napkin and draw another glyph at random.

"Kuu," Jonas says.

"Okay, you're coming with me," you say, and lead Jonas to his office. A minute later, you've brought up a list of Gate symbols, and have Jonas go through them all to find out what symbols have what sounds.

It's like playing a crossword, except with a different alien language.

"Pra," Jonas points at one glyph.

"Right," you nod, writing it down. That's the first one.

Soon enough, you've found them. Pra-Cla-Ru-Sh-Tao-Nas-At. It's the Gate Address for the planet.

You bring this forwards to Daniel and Carter, and though they have a hard time believing it at first... you win them over with said address being actually on the List you added the LAST TIME you got head sucked.

Of course, it's an address that you dialed over two years ago and couldn't get a lock, but, hey, it's an address.

"And it's an address we can calculate the planet's location in space in," Carter agrees. "We'll need a ship, though."

"Let's check in with Teal'c, shall we?" You suggest.


 

Teal'c and Bra'tac have only managed to find one measly Cargo Ship, but it'll do for a cross-galactic trip instead of defending the planet.

The pilot and owner of the ship, a Jaffa named Ronan, makes you a little uneasy, though. There's something in his eyes. Bra'tac is still on Chulak looking for ships to support the cause, leaving the crew, plus that Ronan guy, as You, Carter, Daniel, Jonas, Teal'c, and Keiko tagging along for the long haul.

With a so-bad-its-good joke about asking if you'll be needing a kitchen sink, Weir okays the mission and you've soon got the shuttle packed up on Chulak, and rocketing off towards Praclarushtaonas. You wonder how that address has stayed current despite the planetary drift?

Then, the answer hits you pretty easily. Callie could set custom Gate Addresses for the two Alternia Gates while they were in use, so why couldn't the Ancients do the same for a planet that was "Lost in Fire"? Because, really, the chances of those same six symbols just *coincidentally* matching up to the spatial locations is... well...

It's stretching the suspension of disbelief something fierce to believe it to just be a coincidence.

The trip at max hyperspace speed, Carter says, would take two days to reach the planet. Upon hearing that, Jonas says 'We need to go faster,' drags out his ZPM powered gadget, plugs it into the Hyperdrive engines of the Cargo Ship and NYOOOM, your cargo ship speeds up faster than could be expected from the engines normally.

Recalculating, Carter says it'll only take a day to get there, and a day to get back in return.

Nice, Jonas. Very nice.


 

Your name is General George Hammond, and you feel tense as you arrive at the White House.

You're soon brought into the President's office, where General Jumper, General Maynard, and the National Security Agency representative already are. A guard stands in the background, and General Jumper is already addressing the President.

"A short time ago our space based radar detected three Goa'ul Motherships emerging from hyperspace beyond the moon," he says.

"Looks like you were wrong again, Bob," Hayes remarks, mostly to himself.

"While three Goa'uld ships is hardly the full force of Anubis' fleet, it makes sense that he would send some advanced scouts to keep an eye on our movements," Maynard says,

"I agree," you say, making your grand entrance to the room. "Anubis likely wants to known if SG-1 has already brought the Lost City or any form of Ancient Technology back to Earth."

"George!" Hayes turns to grin. "Glad you could make it on such short notice after our talks from last night."

"If I'd known we'd be jumping right back into it so soon, I'd have asked for a guest room," you joke.

"So, let's discuss our options," Hayes begins.

"Anubis is still assembling his main fleet," you say. "It's likely he's holding back the main assault for the time being. If we openly attack with Prometheus and the 302s, we'll expose our bluff and he'll likely launch his attack immediately."

"Right," Hayes nods, then orders, "We remain at DEFCON 3 for the time being, but for now, contact the governments of Russia, Great Britain, France, China and Canada. And let them know what we think we're in for. In the meantime, I better prepare a hell of a speech!"


 

Meanwhile, onboard Anubis' main ship, his First Prime, Marrow, approaches, and reports, "My Lord, the advance attack scouts report that they have recieved no challenges."

Anubis considers his options. There is much to be considered, after all.

"ORDER THEM THIS, WAIT ONE EARTH HOUR, AND IF THEY ARE NOT ATTACKED, BEGIN THE ATTACK. IF THE TAU'RI HAVE THE WEAPONS OF THE ANCIENTS, THEY WILL BE FORCED TO USE THEM."

"Yes, my Lord." She then says, "We have also received further word of English's movements."

Anubis then asks, "WHAT OF ENGLISH'S MOVEMENTS THEN?"

"His forces are under attack from the Alternians through the Supergate," Marrow reports. "Reports are they've already formed their Ultrazord and are forcing English to retreat."

"IF THEY SUCCEED, THEY WILL HAVE SECURED THE SUPERGATE," Anubis muses. "HOW MANY DAYS OUT ARE THEY FROM INTERFERING WITH OUR PLANS?"

"Atleast two days, if they don't have any means of pushing their engines further than previously established," Marrow answers.

"WE MAY HAVE TO CONTEND WITH THEIR INTERFERENCE THEN," Anubis grunts. "VERY WELL. TELL THE FLEET TO PREPARE FOR SUCH A CONTINGENCY."

"At once, my Lord," and with that, Marrow turns to leave.


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 24TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/03/0004.

The Cargo Ship drops out of hyperspace.

Your name is Jack O'neill, and you frown. "Well, that's not good."

"It's not," Carter says, moving to sit in the control seat. "The surface is almost completely covered by lava flows."

"How could there have ever been a civilization down there?" Daniel asks.

"A star becomes a red giant like this near the end of his life. A million years ago this planet may have looked very much like Earth," Carter answers.

"So we're a million years too late?" you ask.

"Probably more," Carter grimaces.

"That's very late," Daniel agrees.

Keiko coughs, "Well, the Ancients did call it 'Praclarush Taonas' for a reason, right?"

You look to Carter, and say, "Jonas had me pack Haz-Mat suits."

"So Jonas knew the conditions of the planet," Carter says. "We've got to go down there somewhere."

You motion for Ronan to get out of the driver's seat, and the guy reluctantly does. "Jonas, take a seat," you order.

Jonas does so. "Okay. Where to?"

"Where-ever you need us to go," you say.

Jonas' eyes seem to glaze over upon hearing that, and he says something in Ancient before tkaing the controls and guiding the Cargo Ship down towards the surface.

After a few moments of flying, the ships' scanners bring up a location, and a course, and Jonas says, "Taonas."

"It's a perfectly formed half sphere of Solid Rock," Carter observes the scan results, even as Jonas brings you in closer.

"A Cavern?" Teal'c inquires.

"No," Carter shakes her head. "I think it's a force field."

"Pretty small dome for a city," you say.

"Probably not a city, more like an outpost..." Carter frowns. "There aren't any energy readings either."

"The shield may have since failed, or was deliberately shut down," Teal'c supposes.

"We've got to check it out still," you say.


 

Maynard reports to the President, "Mister President, we managed to contact the Captain of the Sprewitt, a destroyer in the Nimitz battlegroup."
He brings up the loudspeaker on the phone.

"I repeat some sort of beam just came out of the sky, there wasn't any warning but the entire carrier just went up in one big fireball," Says the captain on the other end.

"Captain," Hayes asks, "can you see the enemy?

"Holy…! Another cruiser just blew up. Where the hell is the fire coming from? All ahea-" And then the line cuts to static.

Maynard grimaces. "That Engagement began less than five minutes ago, and that was still only just one Goa'uld vessel."

All eyes look towards Hammond, and he remarks, "Anubis is toying with us. Testing our defenses."


 

The Cargo Ship settles over the surface of the solid rock dome, and you breathe to yourself inside your Haz-mat suit.

"Okay, Teal'c, Ronan, bring the ship around when we're ready to come back once we're down there," you order, tabbing the radio. "Everyone else, stay strong, stick close, and for the love of all things leading to our survival, don't touch anything unless Jonas thinks its a good idea to."

And then with a nod to Teal'c, he punches the buttons for the ring platform and- SKREEE! VRRRRRMM! VAROOOOSH! You find yourself and SG-1 down in the matching ring platform inside the rock surface.

"Amazing it's still intact after all this time," Carter says. "The rock dome was thin enough for the matter stream to penetrate without causing any damage."

"Can you still hear us?" Teal'c inquires over the radio.

"Loud and Clear, T," you say.

"We will now move a safe distance and return on your signal," Teal'c says.

"The Radiation Level is pretty high, even within the sealed dome," Carter begins, checking a scanner in an eerily familiar way.

"We shouldn't stay long?" You quote Carter herself from quite a few time loops.

"No, Sir," she says.

"Too bad, it's very pleasant otherwise," Daniel remarks.

"Yeah, add a swimming pool, sauna," Keiko giggles. "Put in a few skylights. Yeah. Would be a neat place."

Jonas starts leading the way in, and you pass by some oddly familiar architecture.

"Definitely built by the Ancients," Keiko says. "This is the same structural work in Aincrad's engine room."

"Place doesn't seem operational," You say. "What the hell are we looking for here, Jonas?"

He doesn't reply.

"Dunno about you guys, but I'm, kinda hoping this isn't the Lost City," Carter agrees.

And then you find a room with a large stone chair sitting on a hexagonal platform.

"Well that's familiar," Keiko says. "We've got one of those in Aincrad. Kazuto used it to land us on the ocean when we crashed."

"Think you can use it?" You ask.

"Maybe if it has power, but otherwise... I don't know what we're here for," she says. "Jonas?"

He motions for her to sit down, so Keiko does.

She sits down on the chair, and it lights up, casting a blue light across the red room, making everything purple.

"Well, that's a yes to power," she says, squishing her gloved hand into one of the things that looks almost like a cupholder on the armrest, except filled with some kind of blue squishy gel.

With a woosh of blue light around the entire area looking like a small domed forcefield concentrated over the chair, and a burst of air that disturbs the dust on the ground, Carter checks the readings on her device and confirms, "Atmosphere's safe, radiation's been purged."

Keiko takes off her haz-mat's helmet, and shakes her hair out. "Bleh! Good. It was a little stuffy in there."

You all do the same.

Keiko shifts into the chair, and it reclines back. "Okay, what am I looking for, Jonas? Keyword? Anything?"

Jonas says something that Daniel translates as "Starmap."

Keiko brings up a hologram above you with but a moment's thought.

One planet gets marked with a familiar gate address.

"That's us," Daniel points at it, "Praclarush."

"Now what?" Keiko asks.

"Terra," Jonas says, "Atlantus."

Keiko closes her eyes, and the map focus in on a solar system- a very familiar one- and then a specific planet.

"Earth?" Daniel asks.

"That's because it doesn't take into consideration 30 million years of continental drift," Carter says.

"One second," Keiko says, and before your eyes, the planet evolves into its present day state. "It's pointing towards the southern pole."

"Antarctica?" You ask. "Of course it'd be Antarctica."

"We came all this way just to go back?" Daniel asks.

"No!" Jonas says, putting his haz-mat helmet back on.

Wisely, you all do the same, and Keiko gets out of the chair.

Jonas approaches the base of it, and motions waving his hand over it twice.

Keiko moves over to it, and does the motion...

"Nothing happened," you say. Jonas pointedly stares at you for stating the obvious.

"Weird," she says. "I could've sworn..." She glances over at the rest of you. "Unless?"

"What?" You ask.

"Colonel, come over here for a moment would you?" she asks, and you do so. "I don't think it's two waves one motion, it's two waves from two people," she says.

"Like the Base Self Destruct," you agree. "Why me, though?"

"Just call it a hunch," Keiko says.

"Alright," You nod, and on three, you wave your hands over the section Jonas indicated.

Part of it slides away, and from it rises a ZPM.

"...A ZPM?" Keiko asks. "Why the hell did we come all this way for a ZPM?? WE HAVE ZPMS ALREADY!"

"It's gotta be important for reasons we don't understand yet," Carter says. "Jonas did bring us out here for it."

"Whatever," Keiko grunts, removing the ZPM from the slot, dismissing the forcefield and the oxygen.

The room starts to rumble ominously.

"Hey, yeah, Teal'c," you radio, "we're gonna need that pickup."

You run to the Rings, and wait, even as rocks fall and stalagmites crumble all around you.

"Teal'c??" You radio.

And then, the Rings erupt from the ground, and WOOSH, you arrive back in the Cargo Ship.

Teal'c is on the ground, clutching a bleeding gut, and Ronan is bleeding out from the neck.

"T!" You rush over to him. "Jolinar! Get us out of here!"

"RIGHT!" She runs off to do that.

"Teal'c, what happened?" You ask.

"Ronan.... betrayed us... spy for Anubis..." Teal'c grunts out. "Stabbed me in the symbiote... however... I have none."

"We'll patch you up and-" You're shoved out of the way by Jonas, who places his hand firmly against Teal'c's Stomach and there's a burst of white light and-

And then Jonas pulls away, and Teal'c blinks in surprise as he says, "My strength returns."

"Holy shit," Keiko exclaims with a breathy gasp.

"Jonas's case must be a little more advanced than Jack's was, last time," Daniel says.

"Ya think?" You ask, glancing at Daniel before checking on Jonas. "Hey, you okay?"

Jonas doesn't reply.


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 25TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/04/0004.

Across the planet Earth, regularly scheduled broadcasts were interupted as Anubis's cloaked visage appeared on screens everywhere, and not just that....

Massive Holograms of Anubis appeared above every single major urban city environment around. He held his arms out wide, and roared, announcing his presence to the planet Earth:

"I. AM. ANUBIS!"

From the office of the President of the United States, George Hammond speaks for everyone when he states, "Well, there goes subtlety out the window."

"PEOPLE OF THE TAU'RI- PEOPLE OF 'EARTH'- BEHOLD, YOUR GOD SPEAKS TO YOU NOW. I AM A VENGEFUL, WRATHFUL GOD, WHO WILL BRING MY WRATH DOWN ON THOSE WHO HAVE SPITED ME. YOUR PEOPLE HAVE STOLEN FROM ME WHAT IS RIGHTFULLY MINE. KNOWLEDGE. WEAPONS OF GREAT POWER AND FORCE."

At the SGC, one Doctor Rodney Mckay scoffs, "Well, someone's full of himself."

"BUT I AM ALSO A MERCIFUL GOD. BOW TO ME, PEOPLE OF EARTH. BEND YOUR KNEE AND YOUR WILL, AND PLEDGE YOUR ETERNAL SERVICE TO ME, AND YOU WILL BE REWARDED GREATLY. TO THE THIEVES WHO DARED TO TAKE WHAT IS MINE... RETURN IT AND YOU WILL ALL BE SPARED. CONTINUE TO RESIST... AND YOU WILL BE ANNIHILATED! YOU. HAVE. TWO. HOURS."

And with that, the holograms all vanished.

V.P. Robert Kinsey immediately requested evacuation to the Alpha Site.


 

"Sir, thirty plus ships just appeared in orbit, taking station around the planet," General Jumper reports to President Hayes. "They're within scanning range of civilian satellites. We're never going to be able to contain this."

"Containment went out the bag the moment Anubis launched a massive propaganda campaign against us," Hayes says.

"Sir, we should evacuate you to the Alpha Site-" General Maynard begins.

"No," Hayes says. "I'm staying. I'm seeing this through." He smiles, "Besides, someone's got to reach out, try to negotiate and bullshit for time. Right?"

"I'll be staying here," you tell him.

"Good, George, but also no," Hayes smirks. "If you'll accept it, I have another job in mind for you."

Your name is George Hammond, and you blink as you listen to his plan.

"I'll take it," you say. "But I'll need someone from the SGC at my side."

"Just say the word," Hayes says with a nod.


 

Jonas Quinn continued to work on something with the Earth based supplies he'd brought- hooking them all up to the Ring Platform.

Your name is Teal'c, and you feel somewhat conflicted of this.

"Are you preparing a weapon for battle, Jonas Quinn?" You ask.

He shakes his head 'no.'

"Sensors have detected an armada of Goa'uld ships in orbit around Earth." You inform him.

No response.

"Can you understand anything that I am saying, Jonas Quinn?" You kneel down, looking at him. "I... Wish for you to know that-"

Jonas looks up suddenly, and places a hand on your shoulder. There's a look in his eyes, piercing through the fog of the Ancient Database clogging his brain up.

You bow your head in acceptance, and leave Jonas to his work.


 

"Well," your name is Elizabeth Weir, and you feel a bit smug. "I thought you were a lot of things, but a coward wasn't one of them, mister Vice President."

"I'm a pragmatist, Doctor. Besides, someone has to ensure the survival of the human race and the American Way of Life. By the way, if you survive? You're through." He snarls at you with what amounts to one breath.

You're about to say something else when the Gate suddenly stops dialing, and the lights cut out.

"What the hell?" Kinsey asks.

"We've lost main power!" a Technician that isn't the usual guy states.

"Get IT BACK!" Kinsey yells.

You realize what this means.

"MANUAL IRIS CONTROL! CLOSE IT NOW!" You yell. And someone does just that.

"What the hell are you doing?!" Kinsey glares at you, then at the person who closed the Iris. "OPEN THAT IRIS AND DIAL OUT THE ALPHA SITE NOW!!"

And then the Gate Dials in, rendering the point moot.

WAAA WAAAA! KAWOOOSH! The back splash of blue light fills the room from behind the Ga-

WHABOOOOOOOOOOM!

The entire room shakes as a bright flash of light pulses out and everything shakes as a shockwave hits the Iris.

"What the-" you start to say when-

WHABOOOOOOOOOOM!

WHABOOOOOOOOOOM!

The room shakes twice more in succession.

The wormhole stays open after that, but nothing else comes through it.

"Those were Nukes, Or Worse!" The technician in the Control Room Reports.

You look to Kinsey, and state for the record, "Anubis has dialed in, You're not going anywhere."

You turn to leave, but Kinsey grabs your arm.

"You get me out of here, you hear me?!" He yells at you, desperate.

"We just received an encoded message from SG-1," A technicain reports.

"It's not coming through the Gate," another reports.

"Ah! Another encoded Transmission. Alternian Frequency."

"Also not through the Gate, for the record," the second tech from before confirms.

"I don't give a damn!" Kinsey snarls.

You yank your arm free of his grip, and, speaking through your grit teeth, tell him, "Well I DO!"

You're on the phone with the President a few minutes later.

"Sir, the Prometheus can't win alone against an entire Goa'uld fleet, however, it may be able to buy us enough time for SG-1 to complete their mission *and* the Alternian Fleet to come to our aid."

"Mister President, this is downright insane," Kinsey begins, "I am relieving Doctor Weir and am taking control of the SGC-"

Oh HELL NO.

"Sir, from what I've looked at-"  You start to talk over him.

"Will you shut the hell up!" President Hayes yells.

"I'm sorry, Sir," you say.

"No! Not you, Weir."

"E-EXCUSE ME!?" Kinsey asks, well, more like shrilly shrieks. Yeesh, what a loud high pitched, girly scream from such an old man.

"Consider your resignation accepted, Kinsey," Hayes says.

"Y-You can't do that!" Kinsey protests.

"Oh, please," Hayes answers. "I've got enough on you to have you shot!"

"What do you mean!?" Kinsey asks, feeling fearful.

"Weir, authorize Operation Oscar," Hayes says. "Kinsey, out of respect for our former friendship, shut the hell up and take your goddamned one minute head start with some dignity."

Kinsey rapidly evacuates your office immediately, he leaves the door open. You go to your room guard and state, "Operation Oscar is a go."

With a nod, the guard starts issuing radio commands while you close your office door and sit back down.

"Now then, where were we?" You smile, though the President can't hear it.

"Right, go ahead, Doctor Weir," Hayes says."I believe you were saying something about using Prometheus?"


 

On the Prometheus, Your name is George Hammond and your trusty aide Walter enter the bridge and take your positions.

"Colonel Kirkland, we have orders," You say upon entering. "Let's get this bird in the air."

Kirkland begins ordering: "Set inertial compensateors and shields at maximum. Initiate launch sequence."

The hangar bay doors open, and the Prometheus launches.

You take a deep breath.

"Set course for Antarctica."


 

Your name is Jack O'neill, and you grimace as Jonas finishes what he's working on, and starts gearing up.

"Okay," you say. "Teal'c, get us in close. As close to the planet as you can. We gotta get out beyond Anubis' fleet."

"There will not be much time to decelerate," Teal'c warns you.

"Yeah, well, decelerating might be a bad idea considering we might need that speed to avoid being shot," you say. "So it's a win win, right?"


 

From Anubis' perspective, the hyperspace window that opened right in front of his personal viewing screen was a middle finger right to himself. Doubly so when a Cargo Ship accelerated out at mach speeds down towards the planet's surface.

"OPEN FIRE!" He orders. "DESTROY THEM NOW!!!"

A heart beat passes...

And then the Delta Megaship suddenly emerges from hyperspace- interjecting itself between the Cargo Ship and Anubis' fleet, shields and absorbative energy plating armor taking the brunt of that opening fire salvo.

"SG-1, This is Colonel Claire on the Delta Mega," Joey radios down to the cargoship. "We'll hold Anubis' fleet back as long as we can."


 

Your name is Jack O'neill, and through the shuddering, shaking, tumultuous amount of speed going into the current act of re-entry, you crack a grin. "Colonel, don't mind me saying so, but this is the most gloriously deus-ex-machina moment I could have ever dreamed of!"

"Thank Silica for that," Keiko says, while trying not to look sick. "Oh geeze. Why- Why did it have to be a violent re-entry again??"

"Teal'c," Daniel begins, "You're going to pull up, right??"

"I am attempting to do so!" Teal'c reports as the frozen tundra of Antarctica comes up below you, rather fast.

And then- You feel the BUMP as the ship barely manages to pull up in time and skirts the top of a snow covered mountain.

A few moments later, you're stable.

"Where now?" Teal'c asks.

"It has to be near the coordinates where we found the Antarctica Gate," Carter deduces, even as Jonas slides in silently, and nudges for Teal'c to let him take the wheel.


 

"RAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!" Anubis rages, "ALTERNIANS! NOW!? WHY!? I WAS SO CLOSE!!"

Now joining the Delta was the Astro Megaship, skirting the armada, blasting and shooting and generally wreaking havok.

"Dispatching a contingent fleet to target the Cargo Ship," Mallow reports.




Meanwhile, on the control deck of the Astro Megaship, Tegiri Kalbur and Ashler Dering take up combat stances.

"Let's get Dangerous," Tegiri quotes, and begins the transformation sequence.


 

"ALTERNIAN MEGASHIPS APPEARED IN THE SKY! THEY'RE TAKING THE FIGHT TO THE ENEMY!" roared a running commentary over the Prometheus' indeck radios as the F-302 crews prepped to scramble. "WH- ONE OF THEM JUST TRANSFORMED INTO A ROBOT! HOLY SHIT WHY HAVEN'T WE BEEN DOING THIS!?"

One Major Cameron Mitchel couldn't help but smirk as he put his helmet on and strapped into his F-302. "Today's gonna be a good day, I can feel it."


 

"Mister President, Sir, all eyes are on Antarctica and on Space," Genreal Maynard reports. "The... reactions we're receiving about the Astro and Delta Megaships is quite mixed."

"It's not every day that the people of Earth learn hostile aliens exist, and then *friendly* aliens exist as well," Hayes smiles. "How far out is Prometheus from SG-1?"

 


The Cargo Ship comes to a halt over a certain section of ice, and then the ring platform opens, but instead of jettisoning rings, it instead launches out a massive stream of concentrated energy.

Steam rises over the windshield, and inside...

You are now Colonel Jack O'neill. "We're melting the ice."

"We'll have to go down it manually or through the rings," Daniel agrees.

"Anubis has dispatched a fleet of Al'kesh and Gliders," Teal'c reports. "Very many of them, infact."

"This had better not take long Jonas or this is going to be one real shot trip!" You yell into the Ring Rooms, where Jonas is busy monitoring everything.

"They will be in firing range in thirty seconds," Teal'c reports.

You can HEAR the whine of glider engines already.

"More ships, approaching from opposite direction!" Teal'c reports.

"Jonas! We're about to get our-" Keiko starts, when Teal'c interjects:

"They are not Goa'uld."

And then missile shots and all sorts of other goodness fly over head as a fleet of F-302s appear on the horizon, and rapidly overtake your position.
Following them is the BC-303 PROMETHEUS.

"SG-1, This is Hammond, Do you Read?" Comes though the radio.

"Yes, Sir! It's good to see you, Sir!" Carter radios.

The Prometheus pulls to park directly over head, and you grin. "Let's go, people!"


 

"HAHAHA!" An F-302 pilot yells as he takes out a Death Glider. "I GOT ONE!"

"Great, Kid, now don't get cocky!" Cameron Mitchel radios back, locking on and firing another kill shot that similarly takes out an Al'kesh.



SLICE- KABOOM!

The Astro Megazord utterly began decimating swaths of Al'kesh simply by batting them with the broad side of the sword, and then dealing even more damage to the Ha'taks in the same swings.

The Delta Megazord was decimating quite a few of the Death Glider swarms with its multiple gattling laser cannons.

"HAHAHAHHA!" Polypa grins from next to Colonel Claire and General Leijon as they direct the laser fire. "BURN! BURN!! BURN IN RE-ENTRY YOU BASTARDS!!!"


 

First Prime Mallow took several steps back from the console as she saw the utter devastation being wrought down upon Anubis' fleet.

Anubis was too busy growling, yelling out orders that were ineffective at best.

Mallow...

Mallow decided that it was time to retreat somewhere a little more less likely to explode anytime soon.


 

The energy beam cut out, and Jonas began disconnecting the tech devices from the rings.

"Looks like Rings it is!" You're still Jack O'neill, and you grab a pack of Anti-Kull Warrior add ons, and toss them to everyone. "Get ready for ground forces as soon as we get down there!"

Jonas gives the all clear that the rings are empty, and you look to Teal'c, "Keep the engine warm!"

"Indeed," He nods, and punches in the code to ring you down to the planets surface.


 

"CRAP! That was my last shot!" Mitchel swore. Then, he had a moment of inspiration, and swerved just in time to allow a Death Glider that surely would have hit him from behind smash into another Glider. "Woah! That was a lucky miss!"

Vaguely, as Mitchel watched that combo wreckage of Gliders crash into the ice below, he had a startling premonition of the fate he'd just narrowly avoided.


 

"We're taking damage to the outter hull!"

"All the remaining F-302s have expended their ordnance!"

Hammond orders, "We can't take them back aboard, tell them to divert to McMurdo!"

"We need to break off and recharge the shields!"

"Hold position!" Hammond orders. "Not until-"

"The cargo ship is breaking off!"

"Break off!" Hammond then CHANGES the order. "Break off now! Take us up and to the fight above!"

"SIR YES SIR!"


 

"Well, this is familiar," Keiko mutters as the light fades and you find yourself looking into a very familiar Ring-platform subchamber.

"Yeah," you're still Jack O'neill. and for the moment, you're still Colonel. "Let's find that chair, yeah?"

You begin making your way through the frozen version of that lava facility from before.

"Dormata..." Jonas says, pausing at a chamber recessed into a wall.

"Sleep," Daniel translates.

Then, there's a sound, and you have to raise your weapons and move on forwards.

There, you find Anubis towering over the control Chair... his robes are clipping through the steps.

"YOU ARE TOO LATE! THE POWER OF THE ANCIENTS IS MINE," He brags.

"Only one problem with that," you say, stepping up to him.

"AND WHAT WOULD THAT BE?" Anubis asks.

"You're too tall," you say, and then step right on through his hologram.

"FOOLS!" Anubis growls, and the hologram dissolves away.

You all lower your guns, and Keiko beckons you over to the spot where Jonas raised the first ZPM from. "On three," you say... "Three." And you motion for the portal to open.

It does, ejecting a dead ZPM. It tumbles uselessly to the side.

"Hrmf," Keiko frowns, removing the pilfered Praclarush one from her bag. "Still no idea what we needed one from over there from, but... Oh well." She plugs it into the slot, and everything glows and starts to hum loudly.

Wait, no, that's the Ring Platform.

"INCOMING!" Daniel yells as a bunch of Kull Warriors emerge.

You open fire immediately, with an order of, "KEIKO! DO SOMETHING!"

"COVER ME!" She yells, diving into the chair and activating it.


 

The Prometheus ascends upwards towards the battle above.

"General! Glad you could make it to our shindig!" Colonel Claire grins.

"The pleasure is all mine to serve along side you, Colonel!" General Hammond replies.



The first wave of Super Soldiers is down, and the second wave emerges, shooting immediately.

"Keiko! Whatever you're gonna do-!" Carter calls out, returning fire.

"WORKING ON IT!" She calls out, squinting her eyes.



"Shields are down! Weapons expended!"

"Next hit's going to take us out!" Kirkland points out the obvious.

"Hold Your Course! Ramming Speed!" Hammond yells. "If we're going down, we take Anubis with us!!"



Another wave goes down, and another wave arrives- but...

That's when it happens.

A hole opens up in the ground like the Gate Iris, and from it emerges a golden squid like thing.

It blasts apart the first Kull Warrior it can hit and keeps going upwards, out the tube of ice Jonas carved.

And then, about thirty billion more emerge after it.


 

From where his 302 is parked at McMurdo, Cameron Mitchel watches as a stream of golden light shoots up into he heavans, spilntering off pieces here and there to destroy the Al'keshes and Gliders and Troop Carriers still over Antarctica.

"Yeah..." Mitchel smirks, "Good day."



The beam of "light" emerges from the surface and bursts around Prometheus in all directions, smashing into every Goa'uld ship it can.

"BREAK COURSE!" Hammond yells.

"EVERYONE! GET CLEAR!" Joey Claire orders.



"Thousands of bright yellow…I don't know…"

Hearing that said over the radio, President Hayes smiles.



"They're coming from the surface! I don't know what they are..."

Teal'c smiles, watching the burst of light happening, and knowing that his team was responsible for it.



"…They're cutting the enemy fleet to shreds. My God…it's beautiful!"

Elizaebth Weir and Rodney Mckay sigh in relief as they hear it as well.



"Shields are noneffective!" A poor Jaffa cries out over the fleet radio before dying to a golden burst of fire.

And all Anubis can do is stand and stare, watching as his plans crumble around him.

And then he spots the beam of golden squids coming right at him.

He raises his hand, and yells out a dramatic "NOOOOO!" as he curses his fate to be foiled in such a way.

And then his robotic body and shell is incinerated in the explosion that ensued.



Every single Goa'uld ship in orbit over earth exploded brilliantly- becoming a storm of fireballs in the night sky for everyone to see.

Naturally, Astro and Delta Megazords posed triumphantly with their backs to the inferno while the Prometheus came to safe stop away from it all next to them.

Onboad the Prometheus, Kirkland looked to Hammond and asked the most important question: "What the hell was that?"

Hammond smiles, proud and relieved, and states, "That was SG-1!"


 

With a content sigh, Keiko slips out of the Control Chair as the stream of golden Drones that weren't destroyed in the massive salvo return to their hiding hole in the floor, and then are sealed up again with that iris like closing.

"That was... Something else," Your name is Jack O'neill, and you turn to look at Keiko, "So... what was that?"

"Drones," Keiko answers. "They-" She stops, looking at Jonas. "Oh- Oh no!" She rushes over, and so does the rest of SG-1.

"Jonas!" you kneel down and check on him. His pulse is erratic, and his skin is sweaty, he feels like he's on fire and-

"Dor...mata..." he whispers.

"The device?" Daniel jumps to it. "The Device!! Come on!"

You and Carter string Jonas up between you and- he feels oddly so much lighter now. The hell??

No. Doesn't matter.

You drag him to the part in the wall he pointed out and lay Jonas inside.

After a moment's pause, he smiles, and- "Aveo... Amacuse..."

"Goodebye," Daniel translates, and then-

A wall of ice suddenly emerges, freezing your teammate solid, and trapping him within.

"A cryogenics pod!" Keiko breathes out. "I should've realized that's what it was."

"We... we can't just leave him like this!" Carter protests. "There has to be a way to reverse the process here somewhere!"

"I don't think this is the City, Sam," Daniel says, staring at the pod. "It's too small. It's... Taonas. Not a city, an outpost."

"It's not Atlantis?" Carter asks.

"No, he's right," Keiko frowns. "It's not. I looked in the database while I was hunting for the drones. This place used to be a part of Atlantis, but it was left behind when they took it out into space."

"Where?" Carter asks. "Where did they take it??"

"Far, far away," Keiko answers. "I... I could do another check and look?"

"Do that," you say, staring at Jonas' frozen form. "We've got to find it."


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 27TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/06/0004.

"This last week, the Planet Earth was attacked by hostile forces from Space," President Hayes voice plays over the radio into your ear as you step into the the elevator down to the SGC once again. "This attack was repelled by the defenders of Earth and our own allies from other worlds in space. These people, I suppose it goes without saying, have been operating in secret until such a point in time that it was deemed safe to come forwards to the rest of the planet's population as to what would be going on. The United States, Russia, France, Britain, Canada, and China came to an agreement that should Anubis and his Cohorts be defeated silently... or Anubis or his Cohorts forced our hand."

He pauses, you pass by a floor number, and then he continues, and so do you.

"The enemy known as Anubis was but one of two major players that has plagued our Galaxy, and others, for countless years. More information regarding the other foe we face will be disclosed in the days to come, including documentaries filmed over the last year in preparation for an eventual disclosure event. For now, what I am going to tell you today may be hard to swallow, but you have to believe it." Hayes paused, then says, "The United States Air Force has, for the last eight years, explored alien worlds and made contact with alien races and presented the front foot forward in alliances with alien races both local to our Galaxy and to those in others. They have done this through means of an Alien Device known as the Stargate."

Through the Radio, you hear reporters yelling questions and the clicking of cameras flashing, before its silenced.

You take a breath in, then exhale, watching the numbers dial down while increasing...

"These Allies have come to our aid even in our most dire hour, helping to stall for time while our flagship team located a weapon capable of defeating Anubis. And they did this even knowing what a huge risk it was for them to take. Even despite the fact that one of their mortal enemies had conned his way into the Government at one of its most highest levels. But more on that later..." A pause, excited murmuring from the reporters. "Here now to speak to you is Colonel Joey Claire, and General Okurii Leijon of the Alternian counterpart of our own Stargate Command."

You exit the elevators on Level 19, and head to your office to pack up everything.

"People of Earth, my name is Joey Claire. In November of 1994, a young girl from your planet was hurtled through the Stargate, fleeing from enemies who had already entangled themselves deep within the Government. She wound up on a planet, Alternia, in a whole other Galaxy. And she sparked, well... a Revolution."

Joey speaks as you shove items in boxes, and clear out your desk drawers of their hidden contents.

"My galaxy had been held hostage by a cruel Empire, and though me and my friends had been struggling locally... her untimely arrival through the Stargate proved to be the key that let us kick into high gear and beat that Empire, and to take our freedom back. Because of her, we also fought to find a way to get that girl home, and in doing so, we made allies with you people of Earth. There's so much I'd like to say to you all... but I'll keep it short here. Secrets were kept from you, yes... but only so as for you to have peace of mind. Not all the threats that we'd hope to shield you from have been defeated, but we'll do our damned best to make sure we can and will defeat the rest. Thank you."

"I am Okurii Leijon, I'm not one for making speeches, though I seem to be good at it." Okurii takes over as you clear out your old dress uniforms of Colonel Rank.

"I didn't start out as a leader, I was just doing my best to be a good friend to my teammates. To keep us from fracturing apart. Somehow, here I am, though. I'd like to say that, certain corrupt and selfish individuals aside, the people of your planet that I've come to know personally have been kind, compassionate, and understanding individuals. We've come to be able to co-operate on so many fabulous, and amazing projects. Two of them came here to help defend the Earth from Anubis' fleet. You've probably seen the pictures by now."

You finish loading it all up onto carts, and start loading them into the elevator... and continue going down.

"It may not seem like it at first glance, but our two races are more alike than you'd think at first glance. We've lived so very different lives... and yet we've fought against the same enemies, be they people or forces of nature gone awry." Okurii continues on as you exit at Level Twenty Seven, and enter Hammond's old office, and temporarily Weir's office. "But, for all the similarities, we should also cherish the differences. Together, we can do the impossible and see the invisible! We can touch the untouchable and break the unbreakable!"

Now, it's your office, and you start to unpack.

"Already, we've accomplished so much together.... but we've got so much more left to do. There are enemies out there still planning, still waiting in the shadows for their time to strike... but we will beat them. Either through warfare or through negotiations, we'll manage peace somehow. The people of our Galaxies have had to fight for so much for so long... we deserve to rest somewhere, don't we?"

You finish your unpacking, and remove your new suit jacket from the bag it came from.

You shut off the radio, and get dressed.

You have a ceremony to attend.


 

"Though my time here was brief, and General Hammond is busy and could not make it," Doctor Weir begins from her spot at the podium infront of the Stargate, "I'd like to say I'm glad I had the chance to work here along side you all, and I'm honored to take this opportunity to introduce to you your new commanding officer, Brigadier General Jack O'neill."

You step out into the Gate Room, to much thunderous applause.

Weir takes a step aside from the podium as you walk up the ramp and take your position there.

"Thank you, Doctor," you say.

"You're welcome, General," she says, and then heads down the ramp to stand beside SG-1... sans Jonas.

"Alright," you say, taking the stand. "At ease, folks. You know me."

People relax their stances a bit.

"So, man of few words," you say. "I'll keep this brief. We just pulled off a major thing this week. Anubis is dead, Disclosure is a thing that's happening... Hammond's taking up the chief executive role in crafting something they're calling 'Homeworld Security' which is a dumb name if you ask me. Hope that's just a work in progress." You take a look over everyone. "We're missing people here today, but we shouldn't let that detract from the fact that... Yeah. We just totally did that and kicked Anubis' ass three ways to Sunday."

You get some laughs, which is all you can ask for.

"Changes are coming, most of them uncertain, but some of them good," you say. "One of them are these shiny new stars on my uniform here. The others... " You smile. "Well, one of the cool bits about this job is I get to do things like this. Samantha Carter! Get up here."

Carter looks surprised, and joins you on the ramp.

"For courage, bravery, and quite frankly an outstanding job well done over the last several years, I'm very pleased to announce your promotion to Lieutenant Colonel from the rank of Major," You look to Carter.

She smiles, it's mixed with surprise, joy, and grief, and yet, she accepts it just the same with a nod.

"Repeat after me," you say, opening up a box with the new Rank insignia pins. "I, Insert Name Here..."

"I, Samantha Carter..."

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 23RD, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/02/0004.

Your name is Joey Claire, and as you hurry up the process of eating breakfast by shoving as much food into your mouth as you safely can, you can't help but notice the worried looks of your three Hive-guests.

John, Jade, and Argo have been hiding out here for some reason. You say "Hiding Out" because it's quite obvious to anyone with eyes that they're hiding something and are nervous because of it.

You've made a few subtle inquiries the last few days as to what it's about, but they've just brushed it off and pretended like it was nothing.

Well, you'd told them, whatever nothing is, when it becomes something, they're free and clear to come tell you about it.

And so it is that you give them one last chance, one last opportunity before you head face first into battle and headlong into uncertain doom....

And they just wish you good luck.

Well, okay then. Whatever it is can wait 'til you get back.


 

Much to your surprise, Okurii has joined you on the bridge of the Delta Megaship as you take off from Diaspora and head into Hyperspace towards the Supergate.

"Ma'am?" You ask. "What are you doing here?"

"I can't sit this one out," she tells you. "Besides, Dammek and Callie are busy with testing the new Gate protocols Callie wrote up and couldn't join us. So... Delta needs another Pilot. That'll be me and... whoever else is on active Duty whenever it comes time to fight."

"I'll be transferring over to Kyoretsu with Mierfa and Polypa when we get to the Supergate," you say. "Xefros and Tyzias have the Slayer, and Tegiri and Ashler have Astro. So I guess that'd leave..."

"Me," and then walking onto the bridge is one Roxy Lalonde.

"Roxy?" You ask. "You sure? You've never flown one of these things before."

"I'm not going to sit this one out either," Roxy says, narrowing her eyes. "You gonna make me, Jojo?"

"Nah," you smile. "It'll be fun working with you."

"You chose the right one anyways," Okurii says. "This is the ship with all the guns."


 

You've transferred to the Kishamoth a bit later than you'd have hoped, but still generally on schedule with everything else.

Mierfa and Polypa's faces show on screen on your left and right, flanking you respectively with K-Line and T-Line. The Supergate looms ahead as it begins dialing out to Milky Way.

"Alright, everyone," Tyzias warns over the radio. "We're not sure if English or Anubis have fixed the Supergate's DHD yet, so once we secure it, we may not be able to dial out for reinforcements immediately. We'll need a couple ships to stay behind and guard the Supergate while the others go ahead towards Earth to help in the fight. Any volunteers?"

"I think Astro and Delta would be the best bets to send," Xefros says. "Anyone else disagree with that?"

Nobody disagreed much on that particular decision... and then the Supergate activated.

The Kawoosh shoots forwards, and colapses. You wonder if, on the other side, any ships were dumb enough to stand in the way of it?

Either way, Okurii gives the command, "Ultrazord team, Begin Phase One! MOVE OUT!"

And then Delta rockets through the Supergate first and foremost, laser cannons already charged up to fire.

Astro and Slayer follow it through, and then you nod to your Matesprit and Kismesis, and you plunge through the Supergate.

The red vortex washes across your vision, swirling around before shifting mid-way through to green, and then--

SCHLORP!

Your ships emerge into the middle of a startled, disarrayed fleet of Ori cruisers, all painted green and looking totally like the barest remnants of a fleet left to guard the Supergate without expecting an ambush to suddenly emerge through at all.

It was still about seven ships all together- English clearly wasn't leaving much to chance... But it was still a lot fewer ships than you'd been informed that he'd brought with him.

Besides, it's not like you're going to leave much to chance either.

"FORM ULTRAZORD!" The cry went out, surprisingly, in unison without any verbal prompting from anyone else.


 

Elsewhere in the Galaxy of the Way of the Milk, Lord English... Caliborn curled up in the privacy of his own bedroom on his own pirvate ship as he watched his Supergate guardians be utterly destroyed ship after ship by this MONSTROSITY of an Ultrazord.

Seeing the brutal shenanigans raw, and unfiltered, and unedited, is completely a different experience! The Cherub was quickly realizing that, yes he was.

It was brutal, and knowing that he'd been punched in the snout firmly once already- hard enough by a metaphysical projection of just THREE of those zords to be thrown around in reality- the surprisingly tiny Cherub wanted nothing to do with that mecha.

Not one bit.



"You know, I've been thinking!" Tegiri remarks casually as they backhand a swarm of small fighters into oblivion. "We should totally make a set of five Lion Zords that combine together."

"Are you seriously suggesting we build Troll Voltron in the Middle Of A Battle, Tegiri!?" Polypa asks, incredulously, even as weapons fire bounces off of the Ultrazord's armor.

"No, we don't build it in the middle of a battle," Tegiri corrects, "but I am suggesting we build a Troll Voltron after this battle."

"But the suggestion is being made IN the middle of the battle!!" Polypa counters.

"So??" Tegiri asks. "I can make some causal conversation while kicking ass."

"I didn't know Alternia had a Voltron series too!" Joey grins. "Count me in for wanting to build a bunch of Awesome Combining Lions!"

"I'm not complaining about the Lions," Polypa says. "I think that's a cool idea. But- Like- MAYBE we should focus more on THIS battle first??"

"Ah, Okay, I see your point," Tegiri nods.

"What a buncha NERDS!" Ashler laughs, slamming a foot straight into the front bow of one of English's ships.



Not too much longer after the battle had begun, Caliborn had ordered his few remaining ships guarding the Supergate to give it up and retreat away.

His subordinates would question and rage, "Why retreat? Why not send more ships to stop them from taking the Gate?"

For a few days Caliborn would hem and haw on the whole logic of conceding ground to a superior enemy for the moment, or saving lives and ships for a later bout... A different excuse for every time he was questioned.

In the end, though, he would only admit to himself that deep down inside, he was just the tiniest, ever so slightly bit...

Scared.

Even then, he would only admit it even to himself when the people of Earth somehow got their hands on a weapon that utterly vaporized Anubis' fleet over Earth.


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 25TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/04/0004.

"Will you shut the hell up!"

Robert Kinsey RAN, echoes of the conversation just had echoing in his head as he fled Hammond's office... Rather, Weir's office.

"Consider your resignation accepted, Kinsey."

KINSEY! Not "BOB" anymore, but KINSEY. The Warmth and affection he had so carefully accumulated--!

"I've got enough on you to have you shot!"

GONE! GONE IN AN INSTANT!

"Weir, authorize Operation Oscar-" OSCAR. His DOG. THEY KNEW. THE PRESIDENT KNEW! "Kinsey, out of respect for our former friendship, shut the hell up and take your goddamned one minute head start with some dignity."

How dare Hammond give the President that disk of blackmail??

And so Robert Kinsey ran through the SGC.

One minute ran dry, and the guards began turning their weapons on him- Zats and Alternian Stunners.

Kinsey somehow avoided them all and made his way to an Elevator with nobody else around.

He began frantically pressing the up button. Again and again and again and-

"HEY!!"

Kinsey stopped, and turned to look around over his shoulder.

There stood a man in a chef's uniform, with a pair of outrageously pointy shades on his face, an orange baseball cap pinned firmly on his head, and a massive looking MEAT CLEAVER slung over his shoulder.

"Robert Kinsey. My name is Dirk Strider. You owe the SGC a Cafeteria tab of One Trillion, four hundred twenty million, Sixty-nine Dollars and forty-two cents. Counting Interest." He swings the massive cleaver away into an idle sword stance. "Prepare to Pay the Piper."

Dirk Strider lunged-

Senator Kinsey screamed- and then utterly passed out from the implications that he was about to be cut into pieces.

Dirk slid to a halt, glared down at the man, and laughed. "Man, what a wuss." He knelt down, riped open the former Vice President's Jacket, retrieved his wallet, and then stole every single piece of unmarked cash held within before returning it and grabbing at his radio.

"Hey, yeah, this is Dirk Strider. Op. Oscar's a success, I got Kinsey on Level 28, at the elevator. Dude passed the fuck out when I threatened him with the meat cleaver from the cafeteria..."

"Is this a joke?" Inquired someone on the other end.

"No, it's not a Joke! I have the guy right here at my feet!"

"Dispatching Security, then."


 

[GRUBTUBE.ALT_ICON]

>Welcome Back, [LLEENN]. It has been (2) Days since your last visit.

>Today's Date in Your Chosen Planetary Cycles:

}EARTH DATE: 1/28/2001.

}DIASPORA DATE: 08/07/0004.

>Viewing Subscribed Channels, Sorted by Most Unwatched Videos, Descending Order.

>Rebellion News Network

[NEWEST] We need to Talk about the Aftermath.

"Sup, Rebellion! Hope you're having a fine day here in the Alternia Galaxy, because... hoo. Boy. Yeah. We need to talk about the Milky Way Galaxy. So let's just jump right into it," The narrating troll starts. "As reported earlier this week over the course of several days, Anubis launched a massive assault on Earth because he's a smelly jerk who got his face blown up by a bunch of Ancient drones!"

An 'Artists Rendition' appears on screen of the cloak formed Anubis shielding his face form a yellow squid about to smash into his ship. It's drawn in a very cartoony and loose style, with teal text reading "34T F1SH, 4NUB1S!" scribbled in the corner. The artwork is credited to one "Terezi Pyrope."

"Now, we're all glad to see the bastard go, but new news has broken regarding the situation in Milky Way. And, yes, I know that's redundant." The news caster rolls his eyes. "Earth Side: Former Vice President of the United States Robert Kinsey has officially had his crimes presented to the people of Earth, and his arrest has been publicly notified. Triggering some mass fractures in the political parties in the US. The Republican Party of which Kinsey was a member has basically fractured into two groups, one aligning themselves under the name 'The Trust' and one aligning themselves under the existing Republican Banner." Logos representing each side appear on screen. "People under the newly dubbed 'Trust' are stating that Kinsey is being slandered for his good work in trying to bring the SGC to heel, meanwhile, the Republican side of the fracture is stating that they want nothing to do with Kinsey or his supporters and have denounced those siding with him as just as corrupt as he is."

The video cuts to a galactic map of the Milky Way.

"Following that, jumping right into the next tangentially related story. The brat calling himself 'Lord English' has been actively laying low save for confrontations and skirmishes with the Goa'uld System Lord Ba'al, who's taken over the holdings of Anubis' territory. The other Goa'uld System Lords remain in hiding from the previous Anubis Versus English skirmishes, and are waiting to see who the winner may yet bet. Interestingly, where Anubis was getting his butt kicked five ways into a black hole, Ba'al seems to be managing to hold his own in an aggressive manner, managing even to reclaim chunks of Anubis' territory that English had captured."

A File Photo of Ba'al standing with his arms crossed infront of a throne, smirking down at his subjects appears on screen.

"Ba'al has even managed to get his hands on Kull Warriors as well, stealing back key production resources for them from English and Anubis' facilities. The-"



"KAR~REN~!!" Rhubee Xaolon's frantic calling and knocking at her hive's front door caused Kohiru Karren to pause the video in its tracks, and sigh, getting up to answer the door.

"Yeah, Rhubee?" Karren asks, opening the door.

"Okurii just told me the news! We got reassigned!" Rhubee squeals gleefully.

"What? Where?" Karren asks.

"Diplomat Team Guard Duty on Earth!!" Rhubee answers.

"Wha- Seriously?!" Karren's eyes go wide. "What diplomats are going?"


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 29TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/08/0004.

Your name is Tagora Gorjek, and you step through the Stargate onto Foreign Galaxy Soil for the first time ever. The Stargate thing alone is pretty new, but... Yeah.

Also, your metaphor is a little off. You're underground in some base.

"Welcome to Earth, Fellow Diplomats," Mikari Aiikho greets with a smile.

"Yeah, Welcome," says the man standing next to her. "To those of you who don't recognize me, I'm General Jack O'neill, USAF, leader of this base. I'm the newly promoted equivalent to your General Okurii Leijon. To those of you who do recognize me... you know where everything is, same rules that generally apply in general from last time still apply... Only difference is you guys're gonna have a lot of off-base time this time around. Lots of meet and great, and I hear the catering involves a lot of meat, too. Turkey seems to be a real delicacy across the galaxy for some reason. I dunno... So that'd be a Plus I guess?"

"Glad to hear it, General Jack!" Aradia Megido grins. "And congrats on the promotion!"

Oh, good grief. Whose bright idea was it to put her on Diplomat duty again?

You get the feeling this is going to either be a very long assignment, or a couple of very short ones before everything goes off the rails.


 

Meanwhile, up in high orbit over Earth, a small black cloud of smoke like energy clung to a piece of debris from Anubis' fleet.

This cloud, unsurprisingly, is Anubis himself, having survived the utter destruction of his fleet.

And boy, is the former Goa'uld turned Ascended Being who got Kicked Out of THE CLUB bored.

Anubis keeps cycling through the predicament of his situation. Yes, just as he feared, without any free-wheeling body to tag along with, Anubis' energy ended up bound to the closest, largest gravitational mass- namely, a piece of his space ship that survived the explosions.

Not this same piece of debris, though. Anubis found that whenever one piece of debris passed close enough by his current one, he could hop from piece to piece.

His goal in this crude game of hopscotch was to slowly make his way towards that tantalizing piece of SALVATION- a space station that had an orbit that took it dangerously close to a few pieces of debris that hadn't been cleared away yet.

Anubis just had to hope that his path to it didn't get interrupted in the wrong direction.

Hop- onto a different piece of debris. Skip- to another piece as it drifts closer and closer. Jump- and there, now onto the piece that should close close enough to the station...

And there!!

Anubis takes the leap, and enters the Space Station via an antenna array.

Slinking around inside the internal systems, Anubis searches for something, anything, destined to be heading towards the surface...

Ah, but there is something. A small computer belonging to a Russian individual aboard the station. Better to hide away inside of it and not draw suspicion from taking a human host just yet. Broken Technology gets ignored...

A Broken Human gets Studied.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 30TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/09/0004.

Your name is Jimmyy O'neill, Two Ys, Two Ls, clone of JACK O'NEILL (Now apparently General; who'da thunk it possible?), host to Lantash, boyfriend to one Carter Host to a Time Displaced Jolinar, and now, apparently....

Music Judge?

So, yeah. Somehow you got roped into serving as a judge for this singing competition happening at the Ashlander's Veil before the fancy RAP CONTEST THING happening sometime next month- apparently just to hash out the JUDGE SCORING SYSTEM for bugs in it or whatever.

It's been... Unique so far. A lot of original songs, a lot of covers...

A LOT of it in Alternian-translated-to-English-Via-Stargate-Shenanigans leading to lyrics that shouldn't rhyme actually rhyming.

A lot of people you don't know, and a few you do.

Some girl named Skylla had just finished up singing some country song when Jade Jackson was called up to go on stage next.

"Um, right, hi..." Jade smiles nervously, in a way that reminds you of Daniel- which is really a 'doh' moment for you to have 'cause she's his daughter and all- and, while waiting for the all clear from the technician queuing up her song, says, "This is a cover of a song from a show I watched recently. I really liked the lyrics with how they resonated closely to my own life, so, uh... yeah. Hope I don't screw it up too badly. Been practicing really har-*snrk*..." Suddenly the audio goes out, and she glances at the technician, who seems to be fumbling around a bit with a cable that came loose.

After a moment's pause, and with a sudden pop, the speakers come back on, allowing Jade to continue "...And I guess I hope no more tech errors either, heh."

The technician gives a thumbs up, and Jade takes a steeling breath as the music revs up. Just off stage, you see John Sheppard and Argo Lalonde, giving enthusiastic grins and thumbs up with their free hands- their left and right respectively held tightly together.

"Even the number of several billion heartbeats/ is basic research with little glamor for you," Jade starts to sing. "Even while locked in the past and lamenting our future/ it's inevitability that won't forgive even a single miscalculation of dust."

You blink, realizing that Jade's singing it in some dialect of Alternian, and not English like you'd expect. The words shouldn't rhyme, and yet the translation effect into English somehow makes it work.

"The dreams that stretch out forever and imagine the future/ are a vain theory that we allowed." Jade continues, "'Finity,' that's what the hands of the clock point out/ towards a cruel contract and a choice, HACKING TO THE GATE!"

You look at John and Argo, even as Jade glances at them before the next verse.

"That's why I'll cross world lines with every passing second/ to keep on protecting your smiles!" Jade sings. "And once again, into a time loop without out any sadness/ I'll be a solitary observer swallowed up!"

There was a pause between stanzas as Jade grabs a quick drink of water, and braces for the next verse.

"To you, insisting on life's merits and meaningless proofs/ is pathetic and unfit to relive your boredom./ The conceited fools who act like they're the leaders/ are proof of a basic theorem."

You're reminded for a moment of Kinsey and his treachery for a moment, and then banish the thought.

"A love that believed in infinity and the far side of the sky/ were shown to me by the freedom of our imaginations." Jade once again locks her eyes with John and Argo as she sings that part. "'Finity' mercilessly recorded the passage of time/ leading to a choice that puts our future at stake, HACKING TO THE GATE!"

You have to admit, this song is as close to a thematic echo for those kids lives as its happened so far.

"I mustn't pretend that I never made a promise/ to all my friends back in the day./ So now I'll try to decieve time itself with the gadgets on hand./ And whil I'll observe alone in solitude, I'll never doubt myself!"

The song slows for a bit, and Jade taps out the timing until she starts singing again.

"That's why I want to cross world lines with every passing second/ to keep on protecting your smiles!" Jade sings. "And once again, into a time loop containing no sadness/ A swallowed Solitary Observer!"

And with that, the song winds down and Jade takes a bow before rejoining Argo and John. It's only then, as you watch Jade grab Argo's free left hand that you realize John hasn't let Argo's right hand out of his grip the entire time Jade left their side.

[Hmm,] Lantash muses. [They're oddly clingy lately, aren't they?]

You give a mental nod as you mark down your scoring of Jade's performance along side your fellow judges- all people you don't really know and probably never will get to know.

[I think we need to speak with them once we're done here,] Lantash says.

'Why?' you ask.

[Call it a hunch, is all.]

'Whatever, 'Tash,' you reply.


 

You find tracking down the Trio afterwards to be a bit trickier than you'd imagined. They seemed to have left shortly after Judging concluded, but before you could get away from the table.

They'd probably headed back through the gate to Diaspora, no doubt going back to Joey's place.

Or, at least, that's what you'd think. Except your much younger and decidedly-less-damaged-from-loud-sounds ears pick up the sound of chatter. On a hunch of your own, you follow it.

"Okay, I think we lost her?" Ah, there's Jade.

"Damn it, I completely forgot she'd be just as mad as either," and there's John. "I mean, she's younger, but she's still Mom!"

"What's up?" You ask, rounding a building corner and finding the three of them- Argo looking particularly sick for some reason.

"Roxy told Roxy that we stole a bed when we ran away from home to lay low until her temper cooled down," Jade explains. "But now she's chasing us and we're pretty sure she'll be checking for us on Diaspora if we try to go there, so...!"

...."Okay," you say. "I'll distract her if I see her. You guys go to to our fishing spot."

[Huh? What? Shouldn't you ask-]

"But you're gonna tell me why you took a bed of all things when I meet you guys up there," you say.

[Nevermind,] Lantash withdraws his objection.

"Fair enough," John nods.

And thus you go head out, looking for Roxy Lalonde.

It doesn't take long to find her, maternal anger clearly written all over her face.

"Hey, Roxy! When did you get back in town?" You ask, grinning.

"A while ago," Roxy answers noncommittally. She eyes you suspiciously. "Jim, answer me straight here. Have you see John, Jade, or Argo around since the singing contest thing tonight?"

"Nope," you deflect in as obvious of a manner as possible. "Haven't seen any of them anywhere."

She squints her eyes at you. "You've really lost your pokerface with the de-aging, Jim."

"Fine," you sigh in defeat. "I saw 'em. Asked me not to tell you they went out to Diaspora, to hide out with the Villein."

"Thank you!" And with that, Roxy runs off towards LOPAN'S STARGATE.

[That was disturbingly easy,] Lantash remarks.

'She's in mother hen mode. Best to give her a lead to chase in circles before she realizes we lied to her,' you say. "Now to find out just what our favored trio of troublemakers and bed thieves have to say for themselves."


Carter is waiting at your 'campsite', also known as the hidden entrance to your secret Tok'ra base styled home, with the three others.

She looks at you in a way that clearly says she got the answer out of them already. Or maybe that's Jolinar. No, yeah, that scowl is definitely Jolinar's.

Hooboy.

"So," she says in a quiet whisper, walking over to you. "Apparently they were fooling around in bed and something critically important broke when Jade lost control of her powers for a moment."

"Not anything to do with an actual bed, I take it?" You ask rhetorically. A shake of the head is your response, and you sigh. "Good grief. And they stole the bed to cover that up?" A nod. "Which one'd it break on?" You ask.

"Argo," Jolinar says. "They said your elder self is keeping quiet on it for the moment."

"Knowing me, though, he probably didn't understand what they were talking about and thought it was... I dunno, a vase or something they broke," you lament.

Lantash nudges, and you let him speak, "What do we do about this then? Surely we should tell someone?"

"No, Lantash," Jolinar says, shaking her head. "I think that'd be worse. We all know how Janet reacted to the Penny revelation. Besides, they aren't even sure yet if anything's going to happen as a result. But that's why they're hiding out."

"So... we keep mum about it until they know for sure one way or the other," You state.

Lantash protests, "But- that's... No, I suppose it is the more reasonable course of outcome, isn't it?"

Carter finally says, "Yeah. It's probably for the best."


 

EARTH DATE: JANUARY 31ST, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/10/0004.

Needless to say, Roxy Lalonde came charging up to you the next day as you were fetching groceries from the LOPAN MARKET.

"You son of a bitch!" She snaps.

"I suppose that's accurate, considering Loki," you quip.

"You lied to me!" Roxy frowns. "I ran all over the forest before I realized it."

"Sorry," you say in turn. "But I had to find out if you were angry at them for the right reasons or not."

"They took a BED and then Ran off to Alternia!" Roxy puts her hands on her hips. "I might not be John's mom anymore, but I used to be! I gotta know why. Other me asked me to find out."

You sigh, and let Lantash take front stage for talking while you make sure you've got the groceries stored right. "That's not our story to tell, beyond the fact Jade's powers broke something."

"Then let me talk to them!" Roxy says.

"Just let it be," Lantash advises. "They'll talk to you in their own time."

"Can you atleast tell me why, in as little as possible, they're acting this way?" Roxy asks.

"Despite being nearly fully grown adults, people are still treating them like teenagers and kids, and they panicked when Jades powers broke something," Lantash does a decent summary of everything while you pick up the groceries and begin hefting them onto the cart to wheel them out back to home. "They've also seen how people have been treating Cassandra and Jude over Penny. Especially the people who aren't aware of the sudden year and a half of time spent in a time dilation bubble, and assume they just had the kid out of wedlock."

You summarize, "Basically, they're afraid people are going to keep treating them like kids over everything instead of like the adults they're growing into. It's all a matter of respect." You look her in the eyes, and say, "And respect is what your other self is definitely not showing by sending YOU to ask the questions she should be coming to ask herself."

"Yeah... Guess you're right," Roxy scratches at the back of her head. "Guess it doesn't help when other me still has John and Rosie to take care of as kids still. Kinda hard not to treat 'em the same to one degree or another."

"Eyup," you agree.

"Can I speak with 'em?" she asks.

"Help me carry some of these groceries, and I'll put in a good word," you say.


 

EARTH DATE: FEBUARY 1ST, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/11/0004.

Your name is Joey Claire, and you look at the three kids... no. Not Kids. You can't think of them as kids anymore. You shouldn't have been thinking that way at all, considering how much shit you've personally gone through at this point.

"So..." You start talking to the three lovers infront of you. "Possible kid on the way?"

A trio of silent nods follows.

"Do you want me to get the Shaper Crystal from Kanaya and check?" You offer.

"NO!" They yell out almost as one. Almost. Jade's a few seconds faster than John, and Argo's just a bit behind him.

"No..." John shakes his head. "if you get it from Kanaya, then Rose'll find out and then Mom'll find out and..."

"And I'd like to be surprised," Argo says, "actually. If that's alright? I... I'd like to know for sure when I start feeling sick in the mornings, not from... running away from Roxy."

"Yeah, it's fine," John nods. "I mean, I'd personally rather you not be feeling sick period, but. You know. I can understand that."

"And besides," Argo continues, "there's so much about my biology that's customized, it might not even be possible, so... I'd... I'd just like to see if it happens without any possible magic influence."

"Fair enough," you say. Then, you look to Jade, "Any reason why you said no too?"

"I..." Jade frowns. "I... I don't know why but I feel like confirming it now with Shaper is a bad idea."

"...Any reason why?" You ask.

"Just... this weird sense of dejavu," Jade admits. "I dunno why. I'm not Time bound, so it can't be related to that."

"Well, Cassie's got bad vibes all the time that are more psychic than vibes," you say. "Maybe something Spacey you're feeling is picking up on something? Maybe it's related to the paradox Penny caused? Who knows. I sure don't "

"Maybe," Jade says. "I... I just... I don't like how the idea makes me feel right now."

"Good," you say. "Keep that in mind and if anything else triggers it, let me, or Okurii know. We're trying to keep track just in case it's related to the Paradox shenanigans."

"Okay," Jade nods.


"So...." You sit down next to Roxy on your deck outside your hive on Diaspora. "How're you holding up?" You ask, handing her an ice cold soda can.

"Better than I think other me will," Roxy sighs, accepting it. "Gosh, Jojo... this whole cloning and deaging thing... Being a separate person from the 'original' that's still around? I get it now. I really do." She prys the pull tab on the can and takes a sip.

"Mmh," you nod. "You know, Doctor Weir was around this last week asking for volunteers for Atlantis stuff."

"Really?" Roxy asks. "Where was I during that?"

"Creating another giant pyramid condo," you answer.

"Ah, right," Roxy stares out at the trees, where your Arai swarm idle for the moment. "...You think I should sign up?"

"She got John and Jade to promise to atleast come try sitting in the Ancient Chair Thing for 'experiment reasons'," you tell her. "At the very least, they're in need of people to try sitting in it."

"Not Argo?" Roxy asks, then, grimaces. "Duh. Of course not. She'd turn that down even if this last bit of shenaniganry didn't happen."

"Mmmh." You open your own can of soda and take a sip.

For a few moments, you sit in relative silence.

"So... Disclosure," Roxy whistles. "Didn't expect that to happen in either of my lifetimes."

"Nope," you say. "Me either. Honestly, kind of a relief, kind of a concern."

"Anubis was the cat who blew the bag wide open," Roxy muses. "Still leaves English, though."

"I wouldn't be surprised if Anubis isn't still kicking around in orbit over Earth somewhere," you say. "Penny mentioned something to me when she and Silica came through to ask when Keiko was returning. About how they'd thought Anubis was dead but then he mysteriously turned up again later days before they beat English just so that he could get sucked into everything set up to end him."

"Well, let's hope that if that's the case, he pulls the same trick as last time," Roxy says. "Doesn't cause us any more trouble until he's good and ready to get offed for good."

"One can only hope," you agree.

"...Hmm, what about Jimmy and Gracey?" Roxy asks, eyeing the similarly cloned Colonel O'neill and Major Carter, who are eyeing your new yard fountain with some degree of appreciation.

"I think they're only going to consider it if Keiko can find the gate coordinates within the database there, somewhere..." You say. "But... hell if I know. I've barely spoken with them since we got back from killing Adria and closing the rift."

"Speaking of... has anything surfaced anywhere else about that?" Roxy asks.

"Silica said Trizza's wrecking King Oberonn's shit back in Alfheim," you answer. "Apparently the coward threw himself into hiding, and Trizza's claimed the crown as Empress."

"That's not going to come back and bite us in the rear any time soon, now is it?" Roxy asks.

"At least we don't have to send a ship to go retrieve her," you say.

"Always a silver lining," Roxy agrees.

"Yup," you nod, even as FeyTwo buzzes around and lands on your head. "Heh... hey Fey."

[Warm Greetings!]

[You have a good little run?] you ask of the beetle, and get some enthusiastic mental nods.

"Heh," Roxy smiles. "Who'da thunk it, Jojo? You and me, same age, dealing with all sorts of crazy alien shit, and you with a smart-bug on your head."

"A lot's changed, Roxy," you say, smiling back at her. "A whole damn lot. Some days I look back on it all and I ask... was that even me who did half that stuff? It sure doesn't feel like it. Kind of like a dream, you know?"

"Mmh," Roxy nods.

You continue to sit for a while, taking sips of soda here and there.

"Hey, so... has Jake mentioned anything to you about getting serious with Chixie?" Roxy asks.

"Hmm... not really," you say. "I... we don't really talk much about personal stuff. It's just too weird a lot of the time. It tends to be strictly business anymore."

"Mmh... That's... kinda understandable," Roxy sighs.

"Why do you ask?" You ask.

"I... well. He asked me to generate some diamonds outta thin air for 'im," Roxy answers. "I'm not sure if he's thinkin' ear-rings or finger-rings."

"...Chixie already looks enough like a troll version of Mom as it is..." you remark, "I'd... well. I'm not sure how I'd take that if he asked her to marry him."

"Shrug," Roxy shrugs, having said the word "shrug."

"Hey," you ask, "how's Jane holding up? Feels like I haven't seen her in a while."

"Oh, hah. Yeah..." Roxy smiles. "Get this- Janey's gone and adopted Jayni."

"Oh, so that's what happened to her after Ka'turnal..." You trail off. "Okay. That's cool, and good for her. What else has she been up to?"

"Studying Alternian Quisine from Diemen, studying Villein from the Villein... I think she's on Cla'dia right now, learning how they cook things," Roxy answers.

"Huh. That fits her," you say.

"I heard her say she wants to even spend time with the Mofang to learn how they cook, and the Carapacians, too, if they can ever stop fighting long enough to save their own asses from their own moonageddon," Roxy continues. "And... Hm... I think after that she said something about Tok'ra and Jaffa meals."

"Dang," you say, looking up at the sky. "If only we could ever be so dedicated as to match the desire to learn every meal style in existence as Jane Egbert is."

"Whole universe'd be a much nicer place, that, I'd say," Roxy takes another sip of soda.

And so do you, after stating, "I'll drink to that."

 

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 10TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/20/0004.

Your name is General Jack O'neill, and you exit the elevator of the SGC to find Walter waiting with a thermos of coffee in hand.

"General," Walter greets.

"Walter," you greet in turn, taking the thermos as its offered.

"You have a meeting with Major Mitchel in your office scheduled in five minutes," Walter begins to summarize as you head for Hammond's old office. "After that, 0830, you're to have a radio discussion with a Goa'uld System Lord named Camulus who is requesting Sanctuary on Earth from the fighting. Following, 0900, Doctor Weir is coming here to request certain staff from the SGC for the Atlantis Research Project in Antarctica, and related to that, Doctor Mckay is petitioning to join the project as well."

"Anything else?" You ask, then take a sip of coffee. Hrm, not bad.

"Doctor Lee is requesting that SG-8 bring back plant samples from P6J-908."

"AH!" You raise a hand and say, "Fine, tell Lee he can have them bring back the damned plant, just as long as he can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that we can use it for something positive. The President's looking for positives beyond the usual Tech Stuff anyways."

"I'll let him know," Walter says. "Also, speaking of the President-"

"What is it?" You ask.

"He's scheduled a press conference here at the SGC on..." Walter checks his watch. "The Sixteenth."

"So... Six days?" You ask.

"Yes sir, Six Days," Walter nods.

"Fantastic," you add a new counter to your mental wall of clocks.

SIX DAYS TO ZERO HOUR.


 

o<--STARGATE SG-1-->o


 

"General O'neill, Sir!" Major Cameron Mitchel rises from the chair in your office as you enter. "It's a pleasure to meet you again, Sir."

"We've met?" You ask, jokingly.

"The incident where Anubis made the Stargate Explode?" He begins to elaborate.

"It was a joke, Mitchel," you interject before he goes much further. "I remember your piloting skills with the 302. Now sit down."

"Ah," he says, and then does so, waiting as you take your seat and open the resume on the table.

"X-302 Test Pilot, then F-302 squadron fighter staffed to Prometheus... fought in Antarctica," you look the man over.  "So, why give that up?"

"There was a moment during the fight, Sir, I almost got run down by a Death Glider," Mitchel explains. "It crashed into another and the wreck looked serious. Even if I'd survived it... I'm not sure I'd ever be walking again. I suppose I took it as a sign that I should be doing something else with my life and, well... seeing SG-1 beat Anubis to the curb with the Ancient Weapons Outpost... I felt like I was being called to something bigger and greater than what I've been doing."

"Bigger than flying lead on the first major 302 scuffle in Earth History?" You ask.

"Yes, Sir," he nods. "I want to travel through that."  He turns in his chair slightly, and points vaguely in the direction of the Stargate. "I want to see other worlds and have all the fun you guys at the SGC have been having on a day to day basis."

"Gotten bit by the hero bug, eh?" You inquire.

"I suppose so, yes," he nods. "And for the record, I'd be asking for this regardless of whether Anubis had forced disclosure or not."

"I suppose you've chosen a good time to change careers then, Major," you say. "SG-Teams are reorganizing a lot in the wake of Antarctica. People deciding it's their time to retire, or being promoted out of positions they're otherwise suited for... Every country on Earth wants their own front line teams heading out there. I've got a lot of people applying for jobs, god knows how many people applying to fill the presently two open slots in SG-1's roster..." You pause as something catches your eyes on his petition to join the SGC, then ask, "What team?"

"Excuse me?" He asks.

"What Team do you want to be positioned on?" You ask. "You left that field blank."

"Any Team will do, Sir," he says, carefully. "I don't really care what team I'm on so long as I can be out there making a difference."

"I don't believe that," you say. "Everyone has their specialties. Some teams are Search and Rescue, some are Diplomats... There's front liners like SG-1. What Team, Major Mitchel, do you want to be placed on?"

He carefully gauges your face, as you carefully gauge his...

Then, he says, "SG-2, Sir."

You smirk, "Strider's team, huh? How come?"

"It's as close to front lines as I'll get save SG-1, and I realize I'm probably never getting in there with as many people wanting in," Mitchel answers.

"So SG-2 isn't your first choice then?" You ask.

"I suppose not," he says.

"You'd rather be on SG-1, right?" You ask.

"Who wouldn't? But my parents always taught me to recognize when something was out of my hands and out of my reach for the moment, and aim just a little bit lower until I can make that higher step," he says. "Maybe someday I'll make my way up to SG-1, but I'm sure that's not going to be today."

"...And that's why you'll have it," you say.

"...What?" He asks.

"Despite Jonas Quinn being frozen on ice for the moment," you don't even pause, "we'll have him out just as soon as the Asgard reply to our messages. He'll take his spot back. I'm holding that one symbolically empty and filled until he does. But that still leaves a fourth slot open. Colonel Carter is taking over leading the team, and you're a bit wet behind the ears still... but you've worked with us before with the 302-Gate incident. Helped save the day directly." You stand up and offer him your hand. "You've got a spot on SG-1."

"Thank you, Sir," he stands, and shakes it.


 

The Talk with CAMULUS was short, simple, and boiled down to the Former(?) System Lord promising to bring with him pieces of ANCIENT TECHNOLOGY he'd stumbled upon in exchange for sanctuary from the rest of the System Lords. He'll be gathering that and arriving... later today? Maybe early tomorrow, depending on time zones of other planets.

You'd just finished that meeting when you find Doctor Weir in your office.

"General," she greets.

"Doctor," you greet in turn. "Who're you poaching from me today?"

"Short list of individuals this time," Weir offers you a list. "Doctors Carson Becket, Rodney Mckay, and Daniel Jackson."

"Becket's that guy researching into why the Ancient Tech responds to me and Miss Ayano while not for other people, right?" You recieve a nod. "And Mckay's petitioned to join you anyways. You can have him... And Daniel... you can have him for Antarctica, as long as you don't try swiping him away to where-ever it is the City actually is until I get Jonas thawed out."

"Understood on that," Weir smiles and nods. "So... speaking of...?"

"No word from the Asgard yet," you say. "They're being really silent and it's starting to both tick me off and make me worried something has gone wrong."

"The Replicators still haven't fully been consumed by the Black Hole yet, correct?" Weir asks.

"Yeah, that's what Carter and I are worrying over," you say. "I'm tempted to organize a search party using that new energy core thing Jonas attached to the Cargo Ship... but Jude's still working on replicating it, so..."

"Speaking of Mister Harley..." Weir begins. "I've been meaning to speak with his father, Jake. Do you know when he might be visiting Earth again?"

"Nope," you say immediately. "I hear nothing about that. People tend to come and go through the Gate pretty regularly when it comes to the Alternia side of things. You'd be better off going to ask him yourself. I can authorize that if you want, now."

"That sounds a bit more like a security nightmare," Weir observes. "Opening the Gate to another Galaxy for anyone who asks?"

"Only if those people don't have high enough clearance for it," you shrug. "You have clearance. As do most people who have the back-and-forth stuff."

"Speaking of people who have gone through to the Alternia side of things, and people I'd like to speak to," Weir continues. "John Sheppard, Jade Jackson, and Argo Lalonde."

"Like I said about Jake, you'd be better off going to visit them in person, honestly," you say. "Make it a joint trip, I'm sure you'd get to speak to everyone personally."

"That is an idea, I think I might take you up on it, General," she says.

"Just let me know when and for how long," you say.


 

"Jim, if you seriously think I'm not going to go to Atlantis when we find where it is, you're seriously mistaken."

"It's 'Jack,' Daniel. 'Jim' is my Clone."

"....Isn't that what I said?"

A loud, exasperated sigh followed.


 

Camulus arrived with a few crate fulls of ANCIENT TECH, including a ZPM.

You order Lee to look at it, and he says he'll get to it in a few hours once he's done with the PLANT.

Plants. Why plants? The next thing you know it'll start talking and calling people Seymour.

Meanwhile, you arrange a meeting with SG-1, and prep them for the changes to come. They show up rather quickly, considering its just Carter and Teal'c who have to arrive from elsewhere on base. Mitchel just... stuck around and stared at the Stargate from out the window the entire time since you told him he'd be on SG-1. For the moment, you have him go wait in the Control Room while you break the news.

"Alright, take a seat," you say to Carter and Teal'c once they arrive. "So, with me running this place, and Jonas on ice until we get the Asgard's cute little grey bums down here, SG-1 is down to two team members."

"We could recruit Daniel back in," Carter suggests.

"Sorry, but Daniel's put his chips on Atlantis, whenever Antarctica's research team finds the location, and he's going to be shipping out down here within the week," you inform.

"Damn," Carter swears, frowning. You know its rubbing hard on her, continually losing people from the team.

You try to soothe it away with, "Besides, I'm holding Jonas' spot symbolically open until we thaw him. That said, two people isn't enough to run a team, and with active, non diplomacy related missions starting back up again, I need SG-1 out on the front lines with atleast 3 people."

"What are your thoughts then, O'neill?" Teal'c inquires.

"Well, Carter's taking my old spot as Team leader," you begin.

"What? I am??" She asks, then, pauses to let Jolinar speak.

"Of course you are, Sam. I've been telling you he's angled for this ever since you got promoted," she says.

"Jols is right," you say. "It's about time you've had a command, and I can't think of anyone else more qualified to run SG-1 in my place."

"I... Thank you, Sir," Carter nods.

"So, that leaves a slot open," you say. "And I've found someone who I think can fill in that slot just fine."

"Who are we getting?" Carter asks.

Jolinar nudges out a "Please don't let it be Strider."

Teal'c just raises an eyebrow in that way that he does.

"Don't worry, Strider's got his own jobs going on right now," you say. "As for who it is, it's someone we've worked with before. Infact, he's helped us out twice already. Once back during Antarctica just a little while ago, and once a bit further back..."

"I'm drawing a blank, Sir," Carter says.

You raise a finger, and say, "Just wait here a moment."

You head down to the Control Room, fetch Mitchel, and bring him up to the Conference Room.

"Colonel Carter, Teal',c meet Major Cameron Mitchel, your new teammate on SG-1," you introduce. "But, like I said, we've already met."

Carter gets a dumbfounded look on her face for a moment before she quickly stands up to shake the man's hand, likely trying to keep herself from saying something stupid like "The 302 Test Pilot!" no doubt.

"Major Mitchel, good to see you again," she greets.

"Colonel Carter, congrats on the Promotion," Mitchel grins as you motion for them to sit down.

"Thank you," Carter says, taking her seat. "But... I thought you were stationed on the Prometheus?"

"Nearly wrecked during the fight over Antarctica," Mitchel explains, taking one of the open chairs. "Thought, maybe it's a sign, right?"

The discussion goes on a bit longer, before you tell them to go, get lunch or dinner or whatever meal title is appropriate for the hour, and do some team bonding exercises before tomorrow's mission.

What's tomorrow's mission again? Eh. You'll review the file tomorrow.  


 

By the time you get back home, you realize you forgot to review the file.


 

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 11TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/21/0004.

FIVE DAYS TO ZERO HOUR.

Your name is General Jack O'neill, and you exit the elevator of the SGC to find Walter waiting with a thermos of coffee and a bunch of reports in hand.

"General," Walter greets.

"Walter," you greet in turn, taking the thermos as its offered and starting the walk n talk.

"At 0730, you have a Deberief with SG-8 from P6J-908, regarding the plant sample SG-7 brought back on Lee's request. 0830 you have a debrief with SG-2 regarding their mission to P8F-809. Folders on your desk along with more personnel files you've got left to review." Walter summarizes.

"How many left?" you ask.

"All of the ones you didn't get to yesterday," Walter says. "Or the day before that. Or the day before that."

"Right." You motion for him to carry on.

"Colonel Rundell has asked me to show you some bunting samples for the President's visit, and, uh... Captain Corrigan is waiting approval on the buffet menu."

"Bunting, huh?" you ask.

"And finally, a Mission Briefing with SG-1 is scheduled to start at ten-hundred," Walter continues summarizing. "And Doctor Lee wants to see you in his lab after that."

"About Camulus' stuff?" You ask, taking a sip of coffee.

"No, it's about the plant."

You nearly spit take your coffee, not because of the taste but because its the danged plant again.

"Right..." you say.

"Also, you have a visitor in your office from DC," Walter says.

"...Of course I do." You frown, as you see just that same man through the window to your office, sitting infront of your desk. "Who is it?"

"Mark Gilmor," Walter says, "Administrative aide to help with the planning for the President's Visit."

"Did I order one of those?" You ask.

"No, Sir."

"Do I really need...?"

"Yes, Sir."

"Lovely," you say, entering your office.

"So, you're here to help me out, huh?" You ask.

"General!" Gilmor says, standing with a smile. "Yes, Sir, that I am."

"Civilian?" You inquire.

"I've been an analyst at the Cia for the last eight years. Mostly background checks but I do have top level clearance," he says.

You look to Walter, and he says, "He was assigned by General Hammond."

"Ah," you say. "Well, in that case, welcome aboard, Gilmore."

"Gilmor, actually," he says.

"Isn't that what i said?" you frown.

"You said Gil-MORE, with an E on the end. It's 'Gilmor' instead and-" he shakes his head. "Sorry, it's a very audible difference, and one I'm rather sensitive to."

"Gotcha," you say. "I'll keep that in mind... Gilmor?" You ask, and he nods confirming you got it right that time.

"Had a tour yet?" you ask.

"Had one, Sir," he nods. "It's very exciting to finally see it all in action."

"Sir," Walter interjects, "you should probably get to reviewing the files before your first meeting of the day."

"Can I delegate it to Gilmor?" You ask.

"Sir, you should really read them yourself," Walter says, but trails off as you look at him. "Uh... Yeah. Sure. I suppose that could help out."

"Right then," you say. "Does he have his own office?"

"Right," Walter nods. "Follow me, sir," and with that, he leads Gilmor out of the office.

...Today's going to be fun. Isn't it?


 

You're looking over BUNTING.

"Nothing in Peridot?" you ask.

"Well, sir, Traditionally this type of event calls for red, white, and blue-" Walter is interjected as Gilmor knocks on your door to inform you. "Excuse me, Sir. General Hammond is on the phone from the Pentagon and SG-1 is waiting for your 1000 briefing."

"Right, thanks," you say, waving Gilmor away. You look to Walter and say, "Walter, I just don't have a decorating gene in my body. Would you mind...?"

"Yes, Sir," Walter nods, then exits.

You pick up the phone once you're alone.

"General! How are you?" You ask.

"Jack," Hammond says. "We've been over this."

"I know, Sir, but every time I open my mouth to say 'George,' 'General' just comes on out."

You end up having a very enlightening conversation about Mister Gilmor for a few minutes longer than you want it to, then you exit and greet SG-1.

"General," Carter greets, saluting.

"At ease, Colonel," you say. "We've all met. Know eachother's life stories and such." You motion for everyone to take their seats. "So, what've we got?"

"A Gate Address," Carter begins. "A planet formerly in Anubis' Domain that apparently Ba'al hasn't discovered yet. We think it's an abandoned base."

"One just chock full of abandoned weapons?" You inquire.

"One can hope," Mitchel jokes.

"This device was procured from Jaffa formerly loyal to Anubis," Teal'c says, retrieving a Ring Transmitter Control Gauntlet. "It should allow us access to the facility."

You take the device and look it over.

Hrmf. Looks like the usual thing, probably just keyed to a specific set of rings... Wait... is that a crack on it's inside? This thing was not procured without a fight.

"Looks damaged," you say, handing it back to Teal'c. "It going to work?"

"It should," Teal'c says.

The next mission opening should be tomorrow at Eight...

But this might not wait that long if Ba'al learns about it.

And Mitchel is about as wet behind the ears as a newborn cat when it comes to actually traveling through the Gate...

You look at Carter and ask, "MALP recon?"

"No indication of any recent Goa'uld activity," she says.

"Recon only, and I want SG-3 to cover your flanks anyways," you say.

"Right," Carter nods. "When do we leave?"

"Tomorrow, Oh-Eight," you decide.

"Sir, if the Rebel jaffa know about it, it's only a matter of time before Ba'al learns of it," Carter says.

"I've got fourteen teams out in the field right now!" you say. "Almost all of them diplomatic or resource related!"

You're about to answer that when the Gate Dials in.

What the? What now...?

"Give me a minute to check on that," you say, heading down to the control room.

"What've we got?" You ask the first available technician.

"SG-5's IDC," is the response. "They're bringing through the Representatives from Amora to discuss the pending trade agreements in person."

"Oh, lovely," you grimace. "Tell them to meet in the Conference room in..." You look at your watch. "Five minutes."

You head back upstairs, and tell SG-1, "Good news, SG-5 is back ahead of schedule. An opening just formed in the active team roster. If you think this is so important to do it ASAP, get SG-3, get suited up, and head out."

"Thank you, Sir," Carter nods.

"No, thank your lucky stars you don't have to deal with Amoran Trade Reps," you say.

That said, Teal'c and Carter scatter faster than you could say 'cotton candy.' Mitchel hangs around for a moment longer, then looks to you in confusion.

"Dismissed!" you wave him along.

Grrrrh. You're really thinking about talking to those plants first and foremost...

Plants. What a day when you'd rather deal with PLANTS versus Diplomats. Where's Mikari when you need her? (OH, RIGHT. D.C.)


 

"It's a PLANT," you say, looking at the very large potted plants on the table in Lee's lab.

"Exactly!" Lee is way too excited. "Last night these were just sapling cuts and SEEDS, General!"

"Excuse me, Sir" Gilmor inquires, "if you don't mind me asking... is it really wise to be bringing alien plants back through the Gate?"

"It's a Plant," you say, frowning. "A very fast growing plant, but it's still just a plant."

"And besides," Lee says, "offworld teams follow strict safety protocols in determining what to bring back to Earth. You know, if human kind is going to benefit from what we find out there, we have to be able to study it in controlled situations."

"It's still just a plant," you say.

"Yes, but! Think about it!" Lee says. "Splice in this fast growing genome into, say, Strawberry plants, or Wheat or Corn- Suddenly we can have tons more food faster than we'd otherwise have from normal farming measures!"

"Speaking of food," you look at your watch. "I've got my own rude hunger to get under control."



You meet up with Major Strider in a hallway as you exit an elevator, heading for the Cafeteria.

"General," Strider begins. "If I can have a moment?"

"Sure."

"We're completely stalled with the Amorans. They can't agree with eachother, let alone us." He frowns. "They're like Dirk and Me whenever we were kids arguing over who got to eat the last chicken nugget."

"Maybe they need a time out then?" You suggest.

"That's..." Strider blinks. "Okay, yeah. I think I see where you're going with this."



Less than an hour later, you have two arguing Amorans locked in a holding room, and the guards are told to not open that door for anything but to deliver food when asked.

Shortly there after, SG-1 and SG-3 head out, and you're left to idle, writing up a small letter to Hammond on your computer.

"Dear General Hammond," you begin. "Wish you were here, and that I was off world." You pause. "Amorans are Morons when it comes to getting along, and I think that's the general opinion of everyone involved, including the Amorans themselves."

And then your phone rings.

"O'neill..." You answer, frowning upon hearing the words that come next. "...It's What?"

That damned plant again.



EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 12TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/22/0004.

FOUR DAYS TO ZERO HOUR.

You exit the elevator, met instead by Gilmor, rather than Walter.

"Good morning, Sir," Gilmor says, handing you a thermos of coffee. "The Delegates from Amora are furious. They're demanding they be released and say there's no chance that a trade agreement will ever happen between our governments now."

"Have they tried the doughnuts?" you ask. "You made sure they had doughnuts, right?"

"We... no. I wasn't told to get doughnuts," Gilmor says.

"...You didn't bring the Doughnuts!?" You ask, looking at him like he's crazy.

"I- Uh-"

"It's fine," you say. "Get them some doughnuts, give 'em another day to stew."

You take a sip of the thermos and-

That's NOT coffee.

It's TEA. Extremely bitter, unsweatened tea that could do with ten spoonfuls of sugar mixed in.

"Tea?" You ask. "No coffee??"

"Sorry, I can get some..." Gilmor sighs.

"What's next?" You ask.

"Uh, well, Doctor Lee needs to see you right away concerning the plant from P6J-809-"

"908," you correct.

"And, uh, It turns out the red, white, and blue Bunting is unavailable."

"No Bunting?" you ask, forcing as much disappointment into your voice as you can.

"They can get blue and white, and mix in some red," he says.

"It just won't be the same, Gilmor," you say, putting your hand on his shoulder. "It just... won't be the same."


 

You go visit Doctor Lee's Lab.

Siler is hacking away at the plant that's overgrown the entire lab and is threatening to emerge into the base at large.

Lee looks sheepish as you arrive.

"Well, the good news is it hasn't eaten anybody yet," he says.

"Thank you, Seymour," you joke, wishing that you hadn't seen this coming.

Lee laughs, "Well, obviously we underestimated its growth properties. It seems to respond really well to either the lighting or the atmosphere here in the base."

You move and flick off the light switch to the lab.

"I thought of that," Lee says. "Figured you'd like to see it first? ...Not that having it off has done any good."

You grimace, and turn away.

"Don't worry, we'll get it under control!" Lee promises.



SG-3 reports in as scheduled in the morning from P2X-887.

SG-1 had found the abandoned base off world, but had gotten stuck inside the facility due to the ring platform device breaking after arriving inside.

Because OF COURSE it would.

You tell them to hold tight unless Goa'uld show up.

An hour later, they dial back in.

An ALKESH buzzed the Gate over P2X-887, at around the time Reynolds lost contact with SG-1, and there's been no sign of activity since.

You prep SG-10 and 12 and send them through as backup to search for your team.



That Fucking Plant Escaped The Lab.

They've sealed off the entire level. The plant is both extremely fast growing, but hard to cut down or burn down or.

Well.

Lee thinks the plant is using the ventilation shafts to spread airborne spores.

Lovely.



SG-12 returns hours later with Major Mitchel in tow, ankle all twisted up.

"What happened?" You ask, finding them en-route to the Infirmary.

"I twisted my ankle inside the base. Colonel Carter jury rigged the Rings to send me up, at risk that it might blow a fuse," Mitchel answers. "It did, and took out my radio too in the process."

"And she didn't come back with you?" You ask.

"Way Colonel Carter rigged it? The Gauntlet had to be outside the rings in order to work," Mitchel answers. "Teal'c stayed with her to keep her company."

"Anything inside the base?" you ask.

"Nothing that we'd found when I tripped, Sir," Mitchel answers.

"SG-3 and 10 stayed to guard the gate and search for alternate ways into the base," The leader of SG-12 reports.

"Good to know," you say.

And then someone dials in, and you're called to the Gateroom.

Ba'al stands at the ramp of the still Iris closed Gate, shimmering ala hologram form.

He looks displeased by the wait.

"Oh, Ba'al," you greet. "To what do we owe the displeasure?"

"I have SG-1," Ba'al says.

"...Really now?" You ask.

"Yes, really," he says.

"And?" You ask.

"I propose an exchange," Ba'al says.

"For what?" you ask.

"Not what, Whom," Ba'al corrects. "I want Camulus."

"Who?" You ask.

"I'll transmit the Gate Address," Ba'al says. "You will send him to me if you want to see your friends alive."

"Before you hang up," you say. "We've had some recent staff changes. Just to clarify that you're not confusing them for some other SG-1: Who Exactly do you have?"

"I have SG-1," Ba'al insists, "sans you."

"But, like, who exactly is on it?" You press. "Major Carter?"

"Yes, I have Major Carter," Ba'al says, grunting in annoyance.

"Teal'c?" You ask.

"Of course I have the traitor," Ba'al answers, frowning.

"Jonas?" You ask.

"Yes, I even have Jonas Quinn," Ba'll rolls his eyes, definitely annoyed. And definitely lying.

Gotcha.

"And, now here's the important one," you say. "They were training a rookie on this mission. A Lieutenant by the name of Deeza Knuutz? She's German and Oh So Spunky~!"

Ba'al's holographic form flickers and wavers, and you swear you see the Goa'uld panic for a moment. "Yes," he finally says. "I have the girl as well. She bit one of my guards."

"Okay," you say, frowning. "Can I think it over?"

"You have one day," Ba'al says.

"Is that one Earth day or-?" you're cut off by Ba'al cutting off the hologram and Gate connection.

You chuckle.

Ba'al's bluffing.


 

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 13TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/23/0004.

THREE DAYS TO ZERO HOUR.

"So... Camulus..." You begin. "Ba'al is apparently very desperate to get his hands on you. To the point he was willing to fake having captured an SG-1 that doesn't presently exist. So. What does he want, and is it in that pile of fancy Ancient tech you gave us?"

"I would assume so," Camulus muses. "I'd heard rumor that there was a weapon in among the pile of objects. Something capable of wiping out a star system if it were ever detonated. Alas, it was not real..." He pauses, then says, "Or it may be real. I'm not sure if one is a weapon or not. I wasn't able to get any of them working."

"Riiight, and Ba'al probably wants that," you sigh. Of course he would.

"And he will do whatever he can to have it, or revenge," Camulus frowns. "Whichever may be his more pressing goal."

"And?" You ask.

"I am willing to leave, if you deem it too risky to have me stay here," he says.

"Out of the goodness of your heart?" You ask.

"Of course not! When I asked for asylum, I did not expect to rot in a cell for the rest of my life," Camulus says. "But that is the choice I see facing me. Either you lock me away somewhere far away from Ba'al's reach, or you let me go and I run and run and run."

"...I'll think on it," you say.



"I knew the job wasn't easy for you, Sir. But had I known what it was really like, I wouldn't have been as much of a pain in the ass.... Or I'd have tried, at least, but you get the point." You pause your writing. "The last few weeks since I took over have been a test of my own patience and strength of well, and I'm not sure I'm succeeding any. It's like I'm stuck in a dark room with bad lighting with a constant wailing, klaxon of music that I can hear inside my skull even when I cover my ears."

And then the lights cut out the moment you write that. Emergency lights cut back in a moment later.

"Irony," you write in the light of the computer screen. "The lights just went out. Time to solve another disaster. Sarcastic Yay."



"We paid the Electric Bill," you say to Doctor Lee as you exit a poorly opening elevator.

"The plant is in the wall," Lee says. "It's interfering with power and communication lines."

"There's no light in the walls," you say.

"I know that," Lee says. "It seems like as long as any part of it is exposed to right conditions then can spread it to other parts of the plant. Hell, for all I know it's getting its energy directly from the power grid." He sighs. "I'm recommending we keep the whole base on minimal emergency lighting until we get the problem under control."

"How long?" You ask.

"Well, that's a little difficult to say, because first we have to figure out how to get the problem under control."

And then Lee sneezes.



"Where are we on getting things online?" You ask, entering the Control Room.

"Dialing Computer is offline," Walter reports.

From beneath Walter's section of the computer desk wall, Siler remarks "A circuit board got fried when we tried to restore power to the system."

"Incoming wormholes will connect and we can still receive radio communications and IDCs, but..." Walter trails off.

"Iris?" You ask.

"Manual Control only," Walter says.

"What about manually dialing the Gate?" You ask.

"Sorry," Siler says, emerging from under the desk. "The Inner Ring is locked in place. We've tried disconnecting the control interface, but, well..."

"There was a diagnostic running when the power went down," Walter says. "We think some commands were being exchanged and got stuck when the power cut."

You sigh. "Bottom Line?"

"We can't dial out," Walter answers.

"Okay." You groan. "I'm... going to take a nap. Someone fetch me if there's an incoming wormhole or something Ba'al wants to bluff about."


 

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 14TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/24/0004.

TWO DAYS TO ZERO HOUR.

You're brutally woken up by Gilmor shaking your shoulder.

"What??" You snap. "I thought I left orders?"

"You did," GIlmor says. "There's an incoming wormhole. Ba'al wants to talk."

You slump out of the bed you'd claimed from the SGC sleeping quarters, and drag your sorry ass to the Gate Room.

"Ba'al, sorry to keep you waiting," you say to the hologram. "Had to take a power nap."

"The deadline has passed," Ba'al states the obvious

"Yeah, look, not that we don't want to comply with sending Camulus over, but, well..." you shrug. "The Gate's stuck."

"...What?" Ba'al asks.

"See, we've got a problem with a plant that got in the power lines while we were running a diagnostic and, well..." You shake your head. "Long story short, the Gate can receive calls, but it can't call out."

"Is this a Stall Tactic?" Ba'al asks.

"Look, hey, I'd have called sooner, but we can't dial out, I just said that!" You pause. "Look, here's some irony for you. Carter? Could have this thing sorted out and fixed like THAT!" You snap your fingers. You glance up at the control room, and say, "No offense, Siler."

"None taken, Sir," he replies. "I really wish Colonel Carter was here too."

"...Colonel Carter?" Ba'al asks, stressing 'Colonel.'

"Oh, yeah," you say. "Didn't she tell you? Got promoted. Right after we wiped Anubis' ass off the face of the galactic MAP!" you eye Ba'al, waiting for him to flinch.

"I... thought it was a Joke?" Ba'al tests.

Fail.

"Look,  Ba'al, buddy! Here's a thought!" You say. "Why don't you put Carter on so we can speak to her over the line and she can talk us through fixing the Gate, and then we can send Camulus all the way over to- where-ever it was you wanted us to send him. Can't exactly bring up the dialing computer right now and check. Before you know it, you'll have Camulus, I'll have SG-1, and everyone'll be as happy as a clam!" You pause. "Unless, I mean, you've got the wrong SG-1 in custody. But surely you can't be THAT incompetent. You've got English on a run for his money, after all."

"...You dare Mock Me?" Ba'al tests.

"Ba'al, come on. You should know by now," you say. "Of COURSE I dare Mock You."

Ba'al considers it for a moment, and then says, "You have one more day."

And then the hologram ends, and the gate shuts down.

You turn, and look at Glimor.

"Is it really wise to provoke him?" Glimor asks.

"It's what I do," you chipperly quote Wormhole X-something or other. "Besides, it's not like he actually has SG-1 on hand."



"Gamma radiation?" You ask, frowning.

"Well, yes," Lee says. "We're preparing a method of delivering a strong enough, single burst to the entire base at once. Now, non essential personnel are going to have to evacuate. Everyone else is going to have to wear protective suits."

"You know I've barely slept in two days, right?" you ask.

"Well... yes?" Lee blinks. "Neither have I."

"Lovely. I'll run it by the President then!" You say.



"And so, I'm considering regretfully submitting my Resignation. And, to be clear, the regret is not so much about the resigning part, but the fact that I was deluded enough to think I had possessed even a fraction of the ability to fill your sizeable and shiny shoes." you continue to write. "Please advise?"

You're stopped once again as the power comes on.

Glimor enters your office, and says, "Doctor Lee just called. He feels confident the plant has been fully eradicated."

"I wish I did," you say.

"Oh, and the dialing computer is back online," Gilmor says.

"Well," you sigh. "Let's let Camulus run free to cause Ba'al some trouble, shall we?"

The gate is soon dialing up, and you're wondering just what to do about any of this...

Camulus waits at the gate's ramp, looking eager to leave.

You empathize, really.

Then, the phone rings, it's Lee, and he's telling you exactly nothing you want to hear.

"Abort the Dialing Sequence," you order Walter.

"Sir?"

"Just do it."

Caumulus turns to look up at you abruptly, with a look in his eyes that says "Oh, Crap. I just got caught red handed."

Jerk.



The ZPM is glowing PURPLE. It's not even plugged in.

"Basically, it shouldn't be glowing like this," Lee admits.

"Why is it, then?" You ask.

"Well, that's a funny story..." Lee trails off.

"I like funny," you say. "But only funny 'ha ha' and not 'oh god oh god we're all going to die' funny!"

"Yeah..." Lee sighs, "this isn't the good kind of funny. I think it was the gamma radiation we used to kill the plant that revealed this."

"Revealed what?" you ask.

"It illuminated a substance foreign to the normal shell composition of a ZPM," Lee says.

"And??" you ask, pressing further.

"Well, we managed to scrape some microscopic fragments from the casing- they're, uh, on the tray on the table... And..." He hands you some goggles. "You're going to want these."

You don the goggles as does everyone else in the lab.

Lee motions for a technician to leave for safe cover, and then reaches for a power switch on the wall.

"This is what happens when you introduce a constant electric charge lasting longer than five seconds," Lee says, then flicks the switch.

BANG!!!

There's suddenly a very large hole in the metal tray on the table... And in the counter beneath it... and a bit further down through to the floor beneath the counter.

"Ah," you say. "A booby trap."

"We were going to send it to Antarctica," Lee says, looking shellshocked. "Can you imagine if someone had plugged it into the Chair in the Ancient Outpost? Hell, just powering an Anti-Gravity Shield, or whatever Jonas built to make that Cargo ship go fast..." He shakes his head. "A whole ZPM's worth of that, detonating?? We've already seen what happens when a ZPM loses internal containment thanks to Alternia. Hell. It's only because of that that I even knew what I was looking at as soon as I saw the glow."

"Whole solar system goes boom?" You ask.

"More like, vanished from the map entirely," Lee corrects.

"Can you remove it?" You ask.

"Well, I'd have to consult with Alternia for that..." Lee's answer trails off.

"Yes or no?" you ask.

Lee shrugs.


 

"I have no idea the rumors were real," Camulus lies through his teeth.

"Don't play dumb," you tell him. "When you couldn't figure out what the Ancient stuff was for, you rigged it yourself."

"I did nothing of the kind!" the ex-System Lord doth protest too much.

"Cammy," you chide him. "Tell Uncle Jack the truth now."

"Sigh, It was worth a try?" Camulus shrugs.

"Here's the deal," you say. "How'd you like a chance to annoy, possibly even kill Ba'al?"

"...In exchange, you want me to use the Ancient device to trade for the lives of your friends?" Camulus asks.

"Friends he doesn't have," you say, even as the gate alarms sound off. "Ah, and if SG-3's last report was right, that should be them now."

"...Why should I walk into the proverbial lions den with an explosive device then?" Camulus asks.

"Who said you'd be walking in with an explosive?" You ask, smirking. "I'm arming you with the most deadly weapon known to man..."

"And what's that?" Camulus asks.

"A plant."



EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 15TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/25/0004.

ONE DAY TO ZERO HOUR.

"I... what?" Colonel Carter stares at you. "The base was over-run by a fucking plant!?"

"Yup," you say, twirling a pen around your fingers.

"Damn it, I miss all the weird on-base things when I'm off world," Carter huffs.

"Come on, Carter, we've faced plenty of weird on our own off world," you say. She pouts, somewhat adorably. "If it's any consolation? Just be glad it went mad with electric power and not the taste of human flesh."

"I-" Carter blinks, then exclaims: "Please tell me you did not name the plant Seymour!"

"That's entirely up to Doctor Lee," you say, and before Carter can get a word in edge wise, the alarms go off for an incoming wormhole. "Ah, and right on time!"

You head down to the gate room, Carter at your side, as the connection establishes, and a frustrated Ba'al hologram appears on the ramp.

"O'neill!" Ba'al glares at you. "This PLANT." He bats aside a bushy limb and vine that drifted into the hologram. "You did this, didn't you??"

"Don't know what you're talking about, Ba'al," you say. "I told you we were having technical difficulties. It's pretty damn hard to get rid of the plant. I'm sure Camulus could tell you how, if you haven't killed him already."

Ba'al opens his mouth, closes it, then goes to say something when the transmission suddenly cuts out with the closing of the Gate.

"...You sent Ba'al the plant, huh?" Carter asks, turning to look at you.

"Eyup," you answer.

"He's going to be pissed off if he can't figure out a way to kill it, you know," Jolinar says.

"Oh, he's already pissed off," you say. "But that's what he gets for pretending to hold you guys hostage."

"...Fair enough," Jolinar muses.

"So... secret base," you change subjects. "Anubis leave anything cool behind that didn't go into the report?"

"Not really, no," Carter shakes her head.

"Nuts!" you say. "Actually, I think I could go for something nutty after the week I've had. How bout you?"



EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 16TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/26/0004.

ZERO HOUR BUT AN HOUR AWAY.

You finish typing up your letter to Hammond, and are just signing it when Carter knocks on your office door again, dressed in the blues of her Lt.Colonel Uniform.

"Carter," you greet. "The new uniform looks nice on you."

"What about you?" Carter asks. "Not going to dress up?"

"Oh, right," you say, glancing down at your bog-standard SGC uniform. "You know me. I love dressing up. I was just going to get changed."

"Sir," Carter begins. "I wanted to talk to you about-"

"You did fine, Carter," you say, rising from your chair. "It was your first lead on a mission, and you did everything right."

"Really?" she asks.

"You had doubts?" You ask.

"Honestly, I wasn't sure what you were thinking..." Carter says. "Like... were you completely confident in my leadsership skills? I kept asking myself that while I was down there."

"Aren't you confident in yourself?" You ask.

"I... I asked SG-3 to guard the Gate," Carter answers. "I've been second guessing it ever since Major Mitchel twisted his ankle."

"Please, Carter," You say, moving to exit your office and head out the corridor. "It was standard recon. You prioritized getting wounded out first and foremost, completed the mission, and got home without running into any trouble. And I bet you, even if you ran headlong into a room full of Jaffa? You'd have done wonderfully there too."

"I... Thank you, Sir," she says with a nod.

"Any time, Carter, Any time."



You're all dressed up in your fancy General's uniform, looking over your letter one last time.

Gilmor enters your office.

"General, the President's motorcade is through the gates," he says. "He and General Hammond should be arriving momentarily."

You nod...

"Uh, sir, as you know, I'll be leaving tomorrow," he continues.

"Special assignment, temporary in nature, help oversee the visit, right?" you ask.

"Yes, but also... there's something else as well, something of a Civilian Audit, if you will." He says.

"Of the SGC?" You try to keep the surprise out of your voice.

"Of you," he says.

You stand up, look him in the eyes, and say, "I know."

"You do?" he asks.

"Hammond told me," you answer.

"He wasn't supposed to," Gilmor says.

"Well, I won't tell if you won't," you say.

"Then, uhm, Then you know the President wanted to make sure you were settled in right before he came and shook your hand and fully endorsed you as the leader of this base," he says.

"Uh-huh," you nod curtly.

"Well, obviously, since he's here... uh..." Gilmor coughs. "What I mean to say is, I want you to know how much respect I have what you do here, and for you as well."

"Thanks," you say. He nods, and you motion for the door. "Well then, shall we go meet the President?"

And so as you leave, you think back to the last line you wrote in your letter to Hammond that you'll probably never even send.

"You know, actually. I think I've got this down now. So... Nevermind on that whole resigning thing. -Gen. Jack O'neill"

"Oh, by the way," Gilmor asks suddenly. "Did you ever let those Amoran Delegates go?"

"Oh, yeah." You say. "Major Strider said they seemed so much more willing to negotiate now after nearly being strangled alive by a killer plant."

"Huh. I wonder if that was the plant we had to gamma-burst to death, or the fruit basket I gave them," Gilmor inquires.

"You gave them a fruit basket??" You ask, incredulously.

Chapter Text

"General O'neill! Congratulations on the promotion."

"Thanks, Bregman. How's the show going?"

"We're on a once a month schedule for most of them. The... there's at least two that I'll be having airing back to back. Honestly, though, I was expecting more time for editing."

"Well, that's Anubis for you. One big ham."

"Indeed. So... How's the job been settling in for you so far?"

"Oh, you know. New shoes to break in, plants to incinerate... Politics to Wrangle. Really wish Mikari were here to help with some of that rather than out in DC managing things there."

"Anything you'd like to change that you can't or haven't had a chance to yet?"

"I really wish they'd go with something other than 'Homeworld Security' but apparently that's gotten ingrained in the public conscious mind or whatever. Can't change it now, I guess."

"Suppose not. Any thoughts on Robert Kinsey's arrest?"

"Two things. First: It's about damn time. Second: He still owes us a considerable debt from his meal tab. We're probably not getting a cent of that back for a long while still. But when we do, oh, do we have big things in mind."

"Such as?"

"Five words: All. You. Can. Eat. Buffet."

"I see."

"That you do."

"Any advice to the audience out there now that Disclosure is a thing that is happening?"

"Don't panic. Let us do our jobs, and beyond some snazzy new tech showing up, you probably won't even notice anything different really going on."

"How about some words of wisdom?"

"...Don't be afraid to try new things. Go fishing every now and then.... Eat Cake."

"Cake? Any kind in particular?"

"...Whatever cake you like best."

"That it?"

"That's it."

"Alright then, I'll let you get back to work."

"Any time, Bregman. Any time."

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 20TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/30/0004.

It was an average day at the SGC thus far when, suddenly, Major Davis Strider and Major Karkat Vantas found themselves abruptly yoinked out of their ongoing chess game in Davis' office onto the deck of an Asgard vessel in the blink of an eye.

It then became a day of grave importance when Thor returned Strider to the SGC to debrief you- one General Jack O'neill.

"...So the Replicators escaped the black hole by somehow making their own version of Jude's anti-gravity shields," you repeat back the summary, "the disruptors are still not working right, and the bugs are all heading in one giant ship towards the new Asgard homeworld?"

"Two ships, actually, but basically, yeah," Strider nods.

"Lovely!" You say, then punch the base wide intercom. "SG-1 To My Office, Now Please," you begin. "And Janet, could you call Cassie and ask her to come in to consult on something vibe-wise?"



Carter, Teal'c, and Mitchel arrive in your office sooner than Cassandra does, but it's only by a few minutes, and you suspect that means Cassie already had a feeling something was going to happen today and made herself available at the SGC.

Thor himself beams down a moment later with Vantas in tow.

"Major Vantas has informed me of the situation with Jonas Quinn," Thor says before anyone can say anything. "I will be beaming him aboard my ship shortly.:

"Thank you," Carter says, smiling in relief.

"I apologize for not arriving sooner, however, it's been quite problematic in our galaxy recently," Thor continues.

"Replicators escaped the black hole Thor tried to put 'em in," you summarize for those who haven't gotten caught up yet.

"Replicators?" Mitchel asks. "Like... creepy crawly metal bugs that make more of themselves Replicators or-?"

"Exactly Those," Carter says with a nod.

 "One of their two ships is presently in route towards the new Asgard Homeworld. Further, we have yet to properly devise a new means of permanently defeating them," Thor says.

"Cassie?" You look to... well, you can't exactly call her a girl now, can you? You look to Cassandra, and ask her, "Got any vibes?"

"What's the other ship up to?" she asks Thor in response to your question.

"Unknown," Thor answers. "It departed suddenly from the main ship and escaped to hyperspace before the other one began engaging the ships left to guard the black hole, where they learned of the new Asgard Homeworld."

"Evacuation's out of the question, right?" Cassie asks.

"Too many minds have been downloaded into fresh bodies," Thor says. "To retract them now would take time we do not have."

"Why would the Replicators go to the planet anyways?" You ask. "What's on it besides Asgard tech they've already gotten copies of?"

"The element Neutronium," Thor elaborates. "The planet has veins rich with it, and the Replicators no doubt will seek it out to create more Human Form Replicators."

"Ah," you nod. "Gotcha."

"We'll need to split up," Cassie decides. "Worst Case Scenario, the other Replicator Ship is heading our way. Thor should take SG-1 with him to stop the Replicators threatening his home planet. Jonas might be able to rig up something with the Ancient Knowledge in his head if you work on it before removing it. Meanwhile, I'll help coordinate things here to make sure we get the best chance of survival."

"Alright then," you say with a nod. "You heard the Seer! Let's kick some bugs to the curb."



Your name is Samantha Carter, and you watch as the frozen Jonas Quinn appears inside the stasis pod onboard Thor's ship.

"What now?" You ask of Thor.

"Now, we will connect his mind to the ship's computer and have him work on the problem at hand," Thor says...

A moment later, Jonas' voice echos through the walls. "Hello? Okay. This is weird." And then a hologram of him appears in the room, standing right next to his own seemingly unconscious body. "And more than a little disconcerting...?"

"Jonas," you smile.

"It is good to see you again, Jonas Quinn," Teal'c says.

"Hey, Carter, Teal'c," Jonas pauses on seeing Mitchel. "Who's the new guy?"

"Major Cameron Mitchel," he says. "I'd shake your hand but... hologram, right?"

"Right," Jonas says. "Nice to meet you."

"Jonas, we need you to-" you begin.

"Look up a way to defeat the Replicators, right. I'm already on it," Jonas says with a nod. "It was in the ship's computer logs so-" He pauses, then asks, "Have I really been out cold for almost a month?"

"At least you're not speaking Ancient," you say.

"The Ships Computer is Translating, actually," Thor remarks.

"Oh," you frown. "Right."



"Shit, fucking..." your name is Jude Harley, and you're swearing at your own inability to figure this out as you look over the Original Replicator Disruptor that Karkat Vantas brought back with him.

The Solution HAS to be involved in this thing somewhere. There's no other reason to send it back in time in the first place!!

Just... what do you do with that knowledge?

You don't even have anything to test it on beyond some mockups of the redirection shield you built for Abydos based on the Replicator tech designs.

Even then, they'd DOING THEIR DAMNED JOB as it is! They're absorbing the energy wave and emitting a counter wave. Grr... Just... how

There's something you're missing, something obvious. But WHAT??

Think, Jude! THINK!

The Device can interface with the Bracelet, right? Meaning is can operate with an external power booster... Or... or...

Or it can *activate* a secondary mode by way of thought command?

But then... how?

Unless...?

"MAJOR VANTAS!" you yell, running to find the man.



Alarm sensors sound off across Thor's Ship suddenly.

"What's that?" Mitchel asks.

"Replicator vessel, inbound for our position via Hyperspace, weapons are charged and ready to fire..." Thor reports. "It is the second ship that broke off from the other ship. It will enter firing range in thirty seconds. Shields will be ineffective."

"We destroy it," Your name is Colonel Samantha Carter, and you're TAKING COMMAND.

"I cannot fire weapons while in Hyperspace," Thor warns. "Dropping out, and preparing to engage."

Teal'c wisely prepares a shotgun just in case, you and Mitchel do the same.

And then another set of alarms go off, different from the first.

"What now?" you ask.

"Jonas Quinn's mind is nearing a collapse state from the strain," Thor reports. "I must revive him and remove the knowledge from-"

"Not Yet!" Jonas warns over the intercom. "I've almost got it!"

"Replicator Ship exiting Hyperspace," Thor warns. "Opening Fire!"

And then with a PVVVM-SHING! The Ship's systems materialize... the Replicator Disruptor??

PVVVM-SHING! And then a copy of Joey Claire's original bracelet appears, except it's sleek grey rather than white, and instead of multi colored gemstones, it has all blue crystals that match the blue coloring on the Disruptor.

But what-??

The ship rocks suddenly.

"Their shields absorbed my attack and they have returned fire. Shields were easily penetrated," Thor reports. "We have likely been boarded, I am reviving Jonas Quinn before I loose the ability to."

The stasis chamber opens a moment later, and Jonas climbs out, groggy.

"Wh... what happened?" he asks. "The last thing I remember was... working on O'neill's crossword??"

"Your memories will return shortly," Thor says. "Please prepare for combat."

"...Right..." Jonas nods as Mitchel hands him a weapon and prepares himself another by way of grabbing the Replicator Disruptor and equipping the bracelet.

You look at him with a resigned sigh, even as the ship shakes again from taking another hit.

"What?" He asks. "Quinn made the thing, and its the only thing that didn't come through a time loop, so-- It's gotta do something different, right?"

"Spread out, search the ship," you say. "Blast any Replicators you find."



"Huh?" Vantas blinks. "Oh! Yeah. There was a matching bracelet, I think, that went with it."

"What happened to it?" You ask.

"Hell if I know," he shrugs. "I never got given the damned thing, Jude. I didn't even remember it was a thing that existed until you brought it up just now."

"GAAAH!" You run your hands through your hair. "Well thanks a lot, Mister Time Traveler!!"

You quickly run off back to your lab to try and build a replacement external controller device.



Searching through the ship's impacted areas, you quickly come face to face with a force of Replicators.

BVWRROOO!

Mitchel fires off the disruptor and- the bugs collapse.

"...It worked," you blink.

"Hell yeah it wor-" Mitchel's exclamation is cut off as the world around you erupts in light, and the sound of a PVVVVM-SHING!!

You wind up suddenly in a room made entirely out of Replicator Blocks, stripped of your bulletproof vest, safety glasses, and weapon.

...And for some reason, it doesn't surprise you that FIFTH is standing there, smirking at you.

"Hello, Major Carter," he greets. "We have much to discuss."



The Replicator Ship suddenly breaks off its attack and jumps to hyperspace, leaving Thor's ship behind.

Meanwhile, far across the Asgard home Galaxy at their new homeworld...

The OTHER Replicator Ship emerges from Hyperspace, immediately to be confronted by a fleet of Asgard Warships that immediately open fire before it could raise shields...

Oddly, the same tactic that Thor had tried, this time successful.

Whole chunks of the Replicator ship would slip past the containment net and descend towards the planet's surface.



Your name is Jack O'neill, and you frown as you listen to the longrange broadcast that Teal'c sent your way from Thor's ship.

Carter Captured, a Working Disruptor, Replicators making it to Thor's new home planet...

And the Bugs that took Carter no doubt already on their way here.

Teal'c says that Thor is studying the new wavelengths the disruptor is putting out to try and figure out how to, pardon the pun, 'replicate it' in the existing tech.

Once done so, they'll forwards the info back down to you, to relay to Alternia.

Your only annoyance with this longrange transmission is you can't reply back while Thor's ship is on the move.

Still, you pass along the message to Jude that he's on the right track.

In the mean time, you track down Cassie and ask her what to do about Carter's kidnapping.

"She'll be fine," Cassie tells you. "Whatever the Replicators want from her, it's not bad enough to trigger any red flags for me."

"I don't know whether that's a relief or an even bigger concern," you tell her.

"We should update our security protocols just the same," Cassie advises, trying to sound as if she found some humor in the situation and failing.

"Duh," you crack a dry smile that doesn't really have any of the intended humor behind it.

You just hope everyone makes it out of this alright.

Chapter Text

"Director Bregman."

"General Hammond."

"Thank you for flying out here and meeting me on such short notice. And, I suppose, thank you for bringing the camera along as well."

"Sure, what's this about, Sir?"

"The Atlantis Expedition that Doctor Weir is putting together right now- currently stationed in Antarctica. I'd like you on it when they finally discover the location of the City and travel to it."

"I- What??"

"The response to your documentary series so far has been an incredible hit among the public. With all eyes of the world on Antarctica right now, and soon to be Atlantis... we're going to need eyes over there so the people don't feel as if we've thrown things into the realms of classified secrecy again."

"I... That's an idea, I guess."

"Please, you don't have to make an immediate decision one way or the other. Take some time to think it over. Talk with Doctor Weir, if you feel you need to."

"I... I will, thank you, Sir."



Brrrr. Brrrr. Brrr-CLICK.

"Hello, this is Doctor Weir."

"Ah, hi, this is Emmet Bregman?"

"Oh, hello, Mister Bregman. Hammond told me you might be calling."

"Well, yes. He says he wants me on the Atlantis Expedition if it ever gets off the ground."

"I've seen your work. It's really good! I'd frankly be quite honored if you and your crew were there documenting things."

"I'm mostly just... a little off put by the idea of possibly being stuck in another Galaxy for months on end if we can't get the Stargate Open again from the other side. I hear that's a concern?"

"We're not exactly sure how or why the Ancients left Atlantis, or in what condition they left it in. We're still sifting through so much data from the Ancient chair... Well, we're trying to find out as much as we can. We've already got about three glyphs of the Gate Address so far."

"Only three?"

"The Ancients seemed to split them up through the database in various places for some reason. It's a puzzle we're still piecing together as to why."

"I feel that I need to ask... is it possible we may get stuck there permanently?"

"Not permanently, no. I'm told that if we're unable to contact the SGC after a solid two weeks, they'll attempt sending Prometheus or one of the new 304 class cruisers to come serve as backup."

"...I... See. That's reassuring."

"I thought it was, yes."

"Thank you, Doctor Weir. I'll have to do some thinking on this."

"I'm glad to be of service. And if it makes any difference, I hope to see you in Atlantis."

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 20TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/30/0004.

Your name is Samantha Carter and you'd be bored if you weren't so on edge.

You're just... standing there, waiting for Fifth to say anything further.

"...Well?" You ask, for like the tenth time since you've been kidnapped. "What do you want to talk about??"

He doesn't say anything.

You take a step to the side, he follows, though, continuing to stand in your way.

[Sam, this is weird,] Jolinar says.

'Agreed,' you frown.

"Fifth," you begin, "just... tell me what you want to 'discuss', otherwise just let me go."

And once again, he says nothing. Just... continues to stand there, and stare at you.

Watching.

Like a creep.

[We need to figure a way out of here,] Jolinar says. [Or... rather... figure out if he's already got his hand inside our head.]

You agree, glaring at him and yelling inside your head, 'FIFTH! Your father was a blender and your mother was a washing machine!!'

No reaction from Fifth, so he's either got one hell of a poker face or he's not listening into your mind-space at all.

"Come on, Fifth, you can't just say something ominous like that and not say anything after it," you tell him.

Finally, he speaks.

"Actually, I do believe that I am perfectly capable of doing such a thing. I have, in fact, done so for several minutes."

[So he can speak. I'd almost thought he couldn't,] Jolinar muses.

"Then what do you want, Fifth?" You ask.

"I wish for your allies to attack us with your most advanced weaponry to see how devastating it can truly be," Fifth says, coldly, calculatingly, and most importantly of all...

Without a slightest trace of fear.

"Why would you do that?" You ask.

"So that we may once again become immune to any... developments you've come up with since our last encounter."

[Well, that makes sense.] Jolinar nudges you to speak. "Just one question."

"And what's that?" Fifth asks.

"Why kidnap us?"

"Because whatever countermeasure they use against us will surely also involve a rescue attempt of yourself, and will almost certainly be limited in measure to ensure your survival." Fifth smirks a creepy smirk.

...What??


 

"I believe I have the weapon's parameters successfully adapted," Thor says. "However, we must test its effectiveness on a Human Form Replicator."

"Well," your name is Cameron Mitchel, and you make a suggestion. "Why don't we just beam one up from the wreckage of the ship they blew up- if one survived, I mean?"

"That's as reasonable of an idea as any," Jonas says.

"Indeed," Teal'c nods.

"It is a risk we will have to take," Thor agrees. "We will reach Orilla in a matter of minutes."

"Before we arrive," you ask, "what exactly is it that the Disruptor is doing here?"

"The Control Bracelet seems to serve as an external computational device that generates a random, secondary energy wave in addition to the first wave of energy," Thor explains. "Additionally, there is some form of power well the Control Bracelet is tapping into from elsewhere that I cannot yet determine the source of."

"...Okay, so it's making two waves instead of one and powering it from another dimension basically," you summarize.

"Essentially, yes," Thor nods.

"Glad to know I designed that," Jonas frowns, "doesn't quite help us save Maj- Colonel Carter, though."

"It may yet help Earth conduct a rescue, however," Teal'c says. "If we can prove this weapon consistently usable, we yet might be able to relay the information back to Earth so they can devise a similar countermeasure."

"When we bring aboard a Human Form Replicator," Thor says, "we will use the opportunity to search the Replicator Neural Network to find what their plans are for Colonel Carter."

And so conversation stalls until you arrive over Othalla. Or was it Orilla? Oreoria???

Anyways, you soon arrive at the Asgard Home Planet and Thor beams aboard a deactivated, but still whole, Human Form Replicator left behind in the wreckage into the pod Jonas had been put in.

"Accessing Network..." Thor begins scanning the Replicator.

You aim the Disruptor at it, just in case it wakes up.

"I have Located Smantha Carter..." Thor reports.

"That was fast," Teal'c says, concerned, even as Thor brings a visual feed on screen.

There's Colonel Carter, standing on screen, opposite some other Human Form Replicator.

"If you really think they're not going to go all out to stop you, even at the risk of my own life, you've got another thing coming," Carter says, glaring at the other end.

"Oh, they will go all out, yes," says the voice of someone else. The owner of the eyes you're looking through, if you had to guess.

"FIfth," Jonas recognizes said voice, though.

"However, they will do that elsewhere, and not with us," And then the visual feed suddenly cuts to black, as if...

"He closed his eyes," you realize.

"In fact, I suspect they're about to launch such a plan any minute now," Fifth says, and then the link is cut.

Suddenly, the human form Replicator in the pod punches its arm through the side of the thing and launches its entire body through the hole as a stream of solid silver mass...

You've already fired with the Disruptor before you even think about the fact that its trajectory was heading straight at you yourself.

You get doused with a shower of silver dust from the waist down a moment later.

"The Hell Was That!?" You ask.

"A deliberate sacrifice of a pawn," Teal'c deduces.

"You think the Replicators are playing a game of chess with us?" you ask.

"It makes sense," Jonas says. "...They want us to use the Disruptors on them to see if they can make themselves immune again."

"Which means we must use the weapon sparingly," Thor says. "I have confirmed the data waves from the weapon's output. I believe I can generate a planet wide blanketing field to disperse the Replicators on the planet... but that may be just what they want us to do."

"Did we get Colonel Carter's location from the Replicator?" Teal'c asks.

"We did," Thor says with a nod. "She is on a ship in route towards the Milky Way Galaxy... implanted, surface level meta data implies they are heading for Earth, however, their trajectory implies a different path."

"We must message Stargate Command," Teal'c says. "Warn them of this plan of the Replicators."


 

"AH! I see, now if that goes there and that goes here...."

Your name is Cassandra Fraiser (soon to be with a Harley suffix), and you smile in mild concern. One Jude Harley (the source of said suffix) is cackling like a mad scientist, attempting to forge a crude replica of Joey's old bracelet to work with the Replicator Disruptor.

You were going to ask him how progress was going, but you got your response anyways just by seeing him at work.

You... can take the opportunity to watch him work a little bit longer, though, before you need to go onto the next thing that needs doing.

You're not entirely sure how the pieces fit together, but Jude makes it work.

Like your life until this point, actually, it's a perfect metaphor.

Pieces of random moments, all fitting together into a solid, cohesive whole. Little pieces snapping together into a working mechanism...

A mechanism designed to utterly obliterate Replicators, who work on a similar principle.

The irony is not lost on you.

You're trying to puzzle out the best course of action to do here. No matter what option is up front and foremost, nothing of great, significant, medium, or even minor harm will come to Colonel Carter. However, it's the other variables that get annoying.

Every other option you have plays right into the Replicator's hands. They get an immunity here, or they become extremely resistant there, or they run free across the Galaxy early, or--

"Wait, no," Jude mutters. "I have to flip this piece... Turnways."

Wait.

You're going about this the wrong way.

No matter how you go about this, the Replicators get ahead in some way or another... So what course of action best leads to that BACKFIRING on them?


 

"Preparing Disruptor Wave..." Thor begins counting down. "Firing in Five... Four... Three... Two..."

The wave of energy ripples out from Thor's ship, and crashes down upon Orilla's surface within a matter of seconds.

Most replicators are utterly destroyed, however, a few clusters and the brick-based ships they'd created remained intact.

Immediately, the Replicators began retreating for their ships, in preparation of escape.

"Re-calibrating Disruption Wave. It seems certain groups were prepared immune to that particular waveform," Thor deduces. "Firing in Five... Four... Three... Two..."
Another wave of energy crashed down upon the planet's surface... to no avail.

"They remain immune," Thor frowns. "Attempting third re-calibration-"

Unfortunately, Thor never got a chance for a third attempt, for the Replicator Ships escaped into hyperspace- launching straight from the planet's surface without even bothering escaping to orbit first.

"...And they have fled," Thor sighs.


 

"Ah," And Fifth opens his eyes. "So that is the trick. Now to see if I can share it with the others..."

Your name is Jolinar of Malkshur, and you feel Sam tensing up in preparation to do something reckless.

[Sam,] you warn her. [Don't try anything stupid, now.]

'But we have to-' Sam's thoughts are interrupted as a figure morphs through the wall.

Oh.

Oh, Egeria no...

Is that Daniel? Except... as a Replicator??

"Hello, Major Carter," he speaks, and it's Daniel's Face that says it but his voice is... It's all ATUM, except somehow COLDER.

"...Daniel," Sam begins.

"Incorrect," He says. "I am Seventh in sequence. I am Revenge Incarnite."

Oh. Oh Crap.

[Sam, he's the one that was emerging when Polendina-]

'I know!!' Sam's reply is just as frantic as your own thoughts are.

"And you are the ones responsible for our beloved Progenitor, Zero's demise," Seventh continues. "Though Sixth was the one who dealt a killing blow... She died regardless by your actions."

"You really didn't know her then," you say, taking center stage. "You didn't know her at all."

"As if you could?" Fifth asks. "I knew her before you arrived and Sixth was not the rebellious sort."

"Fear of what ones parents plans to do them can do a lot of insane things," You continue. "If you think about it, you really don't know anything at all about a person if they're hiding something from you."

"The Progenitor would never-" Fifth exclaims, only to be silenced by Seventh raising his hand.

"It is true that the Progenitor may indeed have hid things from us, however those plans ended with her demise. Sixth saw to that personally." His eyes narrow. "That said... I still seek revenge."

And honestly after that you don't want to call him 'Seventh.' That's giving the Replicator too much credit. Danicator sounds like a sufficiently dumber name that you can poke him with.

"Look, Danicator," you say. He doesn't even flinch. "Fifth promised Sam that we would be let go, unharmed regardless of what plans the others put into motion to save us."

"And that you willl..." Danicator narrows his eyes. "However... Our bretheren who survived the destruction wrought upon us on Orilla have gathered enough Neutronium to allow us to create a very special creation. Just as I am mirrored off of the one you call 'Daniel Jackson'... I will make one based upon you... and unlike I, who was born without his memories... She WILL have yours."

And then you detect a toxin in the air. Nothing particularly harmful save that...

It's been...

...Perfectly tailored to knock out a human and symbiote in the same breath??

But how...?

...When did they... Get the time to...?

Make some...thing....

Like...


 

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 21ST, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/31/0004.

The Prometheus and Delta Megaships floated, ready for battle, at the projected end of the Replicator ship's trajectory into the Milky Way Galaxy. While its actual destination inside the galaxy was a total toss up, Cassandra had predicted the best course of action was to interupt the Replicator's appearance inside the Galaxy itself.

Meet them at the Door as it were.

A couple of ZPM assisted Hyperspace jumps later, and they were in position.

The Replicator Ship emerged from Hyperspace well outside of the Delta and Prometheus' disruptor wave ranges. It slowly, hesitantly, began to make its approach.

"Lifesigns detected onboard one!" An ensign on the Prometheus reports. "It has Colonel Carter's transponder!"

"Beam her onboard," Kirkland orders, "Then destroy the ship when its in range."

And then the enemy ship exploded into multiple fragments. Dozens of tiny ships broke loose from the debris and began rocketing around like missiles heading in all different directions.

"Beaming Colonel Carter onboard!" came with the simultaneous order of "Fire Disurptors!!"

Most of the Repliactor ships that get caught in the bombardment of disruptor waves shatter into pieces, including the one Colonel Carter had been on...

But a few survive, and rocket off into hyperspace after surviving the onslaught, all taking off in various directions.


 

"So...." Your name is Jack O'neill, and you look at Cassandra from across your desk. "The Replicators got enough Neutroniwhatsits to make a Repli-Carter, escaped into our solar system with bugs that survived even Jonas' modified disruptor tech and.... this is good for us?"

"It leads to the best outcome where the Replicator's plans backfire on them," Cassandra says. "I'm not sure how it backfires yet, but... I'm going to keep following hints that keep us on that path."

"Alright then..." You sigh. "At least we got Carter and Jolinar back in one piece."

"At least there's that," Cassie nods.

You get the feeling it's going to be a very hectic year.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 28TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/07/0004.

Anubis had no idea what a "Khajiit" was or why they liked to "sneak," but as far as songs to have stuck in ones head went, it was fittingly appropriate to some degree.

In case it wasn't obvious, Anubis had finagled himself away onto some poor fools MP3 player, and had hitch-hiked his way through that into the facility known as Stargate Command.

It couldn't have come a moment too soon. That damn song was stuck on repeat thanks to Anubis' presence within the player and wouldn't shut down, and so the unfortunate soul owning it decided to just chuck it on his desk until the battery ran out of power.

Anubis got out of the Walkman, as the saying didn't actually go, and dodged his way into a computer.

Briefly accessing the SGC's mission logs... ah! What luck! A probe was scheduled to leave off world just this afternoon.

Anubis didn't recognize the address or the designation of "KS7-535" but surely, wherever it was, it would be easy enough to then escape through the Stargate, commandeering the probe device to return to a world he knew well enough that he could hopefully find a new host and get out.

Anubis began worming his way through the SGC's computers, lingering just long enough in each one to cause some minor misfunction and error that would surely annoy the people on the base for all the trouble they'd caused him.

He could try to set something like the self destruct, but then they'd realize something was going wrong.

He paused briefly in a laboratory, where a human male and that infuriating Major Carter- No, COLONEL now, according to base records- were looking over near identical copies of some weapon and very clearly not matching wrist accessories.

There was an Alternian female who entered the room shortly there after, sipping at a white mug full of water, it seemed. "Okay, I'm back. What did we find?"

"Not much," the male answers. "Just that I got pretty damn close to building exactly what Jonas built."

"What's the differences?" Alternian female asks.

"Jude's version isn't tapping into some subspace field that Jonas' is- the alternate power source dimension," Colonel Carter says.

"Hrm, weird," the Alternian muses. "So, let's see if we can figure out what the hell that is."

Anubis grew bored, and so left. Also, he had a schedule to keep, so he couldn't delay for too long.

He soon found the so-called "MALP STORAGE ROOM" where his Probe-shaped vehicle to salvation awaited, and thus began waiting in the rafters to see which one would be taken to the Stargate.

It wouldn't take too much longer, but they grabbed one of the devices, and began wheeling it to the Stargate.

Anubis followed, waiting to enter the probe until the last minute lest his presence screw up any PERFORMANCE CHECKS before it were sent through the Stargate.
It was tedious.

Somehow, watching this "SILER" fellow bumble his way through a checklist was MORE TEDIOUS than having that damned Khajiit song stuck in his head.

"Walter!" And then there's Colonel- No, wait. GENERAL O'NEILL. How the hell did that fool of a man get a promotion. "What's on the agenda for today's expoloration through yon orifice?"

"...Uh... Orifice, Sir?" A technician asks.

"The Gate, Walter. Where are we sending the MALP."

"Oh, right. KS7-535. It was on the Ancient Database. We haven't gotten a lock on it until our random cold dialing got a connection last night."

"Ah, nifty. Gotta love that cold dialing."

An Ancient World?? Anubis nearly squealed with glee. But he couldn't because:

A. He was a formless cloud of shadow energy unable to speak in the present moment.

And B: Anubis did not squeal. He was not a squealer no matter what that Ascended woman, Oma Desala, said. She was a liar who made stuff up about perfectly reformed Goa'uld System Lords who did. Not. Squeal.

Soon, the Stargate dialed up, and Anubis darted into the Probe in the moment before it crossed through the eventhorizon.

NOW! NOW WAS THE TIME FOR ANUBIS TO---

The Probe stopped short after emerging into the other side- not because of Anubis' presence, oh, no, but rather for the fact that the Stargate on KS7-535 was laying on its side in a field of SNOW.

Thus, the Probe landed on its side, unable to move.

The people of the SGC had the camera attempt to move around, as Anubis frantically looked for the DHD.

Neither were successful.

The sheer frigid cold of the air froze the probe's movements solid within seconds, even with the Stargate providing ample heat to keep the air around it warm, and as for Anubis' hunt for the DHD....

Oh, it was there. But it was similarly on its side, with a large knife-blade of ice sticking out of what should have been the top.

All around the environment were signs that whatever had held the Stargate and DHD in place before, preventing their use, had given way by possible means of an earthquake or other random happenstance.

That explained its sudden availability to receive wormholes, yes... but it did Anubis no good.

He was well and truly trapped and it would take a gods-damned miracle to get him out of this.



Your name is Jack O'neill, and you write off KS7-535 from ever being dialed again without damn good reason with a dryly remarked, "It's a very chilly place."

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 21ST, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 08/31/0004.

Your name is Okurii Leijon, and you look up from your office work as a knock comes at your office door.

"You wanted to see me, ma'am?" asks one John Sheppard.

"Yes, John, come in," you say.

"What can I do for you?" he asks.

"It's more like what you can do for the future," you say. "Recently, Terezi came to me with a vision, and formally requested me to give you a rank in the Alternian Military."

"I..." John blinks. "What exactly did Terezi see, here? I mean, last time she started calling me names, I adopted it as my own partly to spite her. I'm kind of wondering if I should do the same."

"Honestly, part of this is Terezi's vision work, and part of it is me wanting to recognize you for what happened on Abydos," you tell him. "I'll be giving Jade, Argo, Jude, and Cassandra all formally recognized ranks as well in a bit- the same as you, as a matter of fact, Major across the board-, however, I wanted to discuss with you first the particulars of Terezi's vision, as it relates to you."

"Okay..." John sits down. "I get the feeling this is going to get weird."

"It does," you close your eyes, and relate the part of Terezi's vision about him to him. "'When Sunken Cities Rise, the Wraiths of the Past will Cull their herd, and a Sheppard will lead a team to be a Major Pain in their Rear.'"

"...Is that it?" John asks.

"There was a lot more flowery nonsense regarding children 'running wild unfettered across the ocean waves' and other oddities including running from a
'Tyrannosaurus Rex', but that's about it, yes," you say. "Generally speaking... I get the feeling you're going to Atlantis, one way or the other."

"They haven't even found the city's location yet," John says. "How can you be sure about that?"

"What else does 'When Sunken Cities Rise' mean?" you ask. "Atlantis sunk to the bottom of the ocean according to myth. It only makes sense that finding it would 'raise' it up, would it not?"

"I suppose so..." John frowns. "...So you want me to go to Atlantis to do... what exactly?"

"Do what you do best," you say. "Stir up trouble. We know Kinsey's people, the remnants of the NID calling themselves the Trust these days, are going to try to get involved with Atlantis now that the lid's been blown on Disclosure. I'm assuming they're the 'Wraithes of the Past' that are mentioned. I'll be formally giving this request to Jade and Argo as well when I speak with them as well, but think of this as a first run pass to ensure I've got my phrasing right. I want you three as representatives of Alternia's Military on that City in case things go wrong. Separate from the Earth Military representatives so incase the Trust compromises them..."

"Then we can act to stop it," he nods. "Got it."

Then, there's a knock at your office door, and a panicked Rose Lalonde barges into your office.

"There's been a Murder!!" Are literally the first four words out of her mouth.

"...Well," John says, "I wasn't expecting to hear my sister say THAT today... or ever, really."


 

Your name is Lynera Skalbi and this entire mess started when you decided to visit one of your fellow Jade Bloods at their new hive to check in on them like the good friend you are because it's been a while since you chatted. As friends. Good friends. Like you are.

Which is why you were not upset at all to accidentally spot Bronya having- being naked with- well. Spending intimate time with-
That is to say. You're okay with Bronya having a hook up with a bronze blooded time traveling cow-girl. Perfectly fine. Yup. The kind of fine that good friends are even when they see said friend f-

FFffff....

FUCKING WITH THEIR MATESPRIT IN PLAIN VIEW OF ANY PASSERBY TO SEE!!!!

GGGNNNH!!! CLOSE THE WINDOW PLEASE!!!!

It hurts. Admitting that.

God, your heart hurts so much for reasons you're... admittedly avoiding confronting and have been avoiding confronting and--

AAAARGH!!!! You just wanted to STAB SOMETHING!!!!

Except...

You did.

Your mind is fuzzy and your head hurts and ---

AAAARGH!!!! You just want to STAB SOMETHING!!!! AGAIN!!!!

Except...

That won't help matters any.

You're not entirely sure when you made it back to the Mother Grub's Cavern, but when you did, you heard that a HATCHLING from a recent COMMISSION BATCH had been GRUBNAPPED. How? Doesn't matter.

You chased after the trail of footprints that someone clearly had missed and-

Well, that's when things get fuzzy.

Fuzzier than before, you mean.

You're not sure what happened, but the next thing you know, you're kneeling over the corpse of a Cerulean Blooded girl whose face you'd stabbed into oblivion, and there's a violet blooded sea dweller grub cowering in the bushes, afraid of you, baring her fangs at you with a mouth full of jade blood in her mouth and--

Oh. Your arm is bleeding. You got... bitten? What??

And that's exactly how Hunter's band of merry band of Former-Desert-Crawling-Scavengers-Turned-Town-Guards found you. Caught Cerulean-Handed with the murder weapon in hand, and a bloodied, faceless body spread beneath your legs.

And that's where things go from bad to worse.

They're saying you're the one who stole the grub, and then murdered the first Troll who tried to stop you.

Her dyed bright blue hair reminds you of... something?

You.

You...

You have no idea who you even are anymore.

What... what happened??

You don't... You can't....


 

Your name is John Sheppard, and you and your sister have somehow been shanghai'd into running the investigation on this murder.

"Sooo..." Rose eyes you as you look over the incident and witness reports. "I hear you, Jade, and Argo have been realy clingy lately. Anything you'd like to report since you haven't stolen away my journal in recent days?"

"Heh, sorry, we've..." You sigh, massaging at the bridge of your nose beneath your glasses. "We've really drifted lately, haven't we?"

"Doesn't help matters any that my Little brother is suddenly my Big brother," Rose says.

"No, I suppose it doesn't," you sigh. "Yeah. It's been a ride, lately."

"I'll say," Rose agrees with a nod. "Kanaya's been commissioned to make variants of the Alternia Military Uniform for the Atlantis expedition team."

"Really now?" You ask. "That's interesting."

"Yes, specific colors and such to denominate specific branches of the team. Science, Military, Civilian, so on and so forth, rather than indicating blood color," Rose says, flipping through a report like you should be doing, so you look back down at the one you already had in hand.

"Huh," you frown. "That's interesting."

"You don't have to sound that disinterested in Kanaya's busywork, John," Rose begins, sounding annoyed.

"No, not that," you say, holding a report out for her to read. "This!"

Lynera was seen speaking with a troll named Elwurd the night before all of this happened.

"...Well, I'll be damned," Rose blinks. "We need to speak to Miss Elwurd, then."


 

You knock on a hive door on Diaspora, and wait.

Bronya and Skylla have both been offworld on different missions for the last five days. Beyond that, they've set up their home-hive-thing on LOPAN, not Diaspora.

The hive address that Lynera said she'd seen the two lovers through the window of doesn't belong to THEM... but it does belong to a CERTAIN CERULEAN BLOODED TROLL.

Only on record as "ELWURD," the troll in question drifts in and out of the Rebellion's filework like a ghost. Here one second, gone the next... Back in places she shouldn't be a few minutes later.

Descriptions are all consistent, though. She looks like she could be Ashler's long lost twin sister, only with hair in a buzzcut mohawk dyed a virbrant blue, and with a punk-rock style of dress that would put any Cyber-punk cosplayer to shame.

According to record, she's an incredible flirt, though nobody ever admits to hooking up with her.

"No response," Rose says. "Shall we B'N'E'?"

"Might as well, if we're right," you say, picking the lock on the door with a subtle burst of wind into the mechansim.

You twist and jimmy the handle open and you and Rose enter what can only be described as a den of iniquity.

Clothes are spread out all over the place everywhere, detailing a ravishing few hours between lovers.

Rose picks up a vest with a familiar Jade Sign embroidered on it, "Well, Lynera was here."

"Great," you sigh, searching the house with a pulse of air. "...Nobody's home."

"I'll search for any written evidence in plain sight, you search for any hidden evidence," Rose decides.

"Alright, fair 'nough."

And so you search the place.

"So... I'm guessing the reason Mom got upset at you and was asking Teen-Mom about stuff was that you three did something stupid?" Rose asks, perusing at a desk.

"Yeah, we... uh... panicked and stole a bed," You answer with a sigh, using a breeze pulse to search for anything that feels suspiciously out of place. "Roxy took it back to Mom, though, so... She shouldn't be too mad now."

"And you didn't take it back in person because...?" Rose trails off, examining a photograph. "John. Here."
You turn to look, and see it's...

At first glance you'd think it was Elwurd and Bronya, except for the fact that Bronya is- to put it nicely- much curvier than the girl in the photo. That, and while the average viewer might've been fooled, to you, who just had to stare at her in a photograph in a file for a few hours, you easily recognize the girl as LYNERA IN DiSGUISE, or perhaps even COSPLAYING as Bronya.

The background shows Diaspora settlement in it, but you're assuming by how unfinished it is, this was taken during a time that Bronya was off world on a mission.

"I'm beginning to craft a theory," Rose says. "One of mutual pining and a desire to be other people."

"Yeah, this is pretty damning..." You say. "...What's the point, I wonder?"

Soon, you come across a strange draft coming from behind a book case. Moving it, you find a stairway leading into a hidden basement.

"Hello, Creepy Sex Dungeon?" You inquire into the dark.

"Creepy sex dungeon indeed," Rose agrees, and then shifts to allow her neon fured cat form to light the way. "Let's see what's down here, eh?"

You head downstairs and examine the...

Well, it's very clearly a hybrid of a sex dungeon and a torture dungeon- a weird intersection of interests, but you're not one to judge as long as it doesn't lead to murder.

"Hello, Lynera Journal," Rose says, picking up a book with a jade hued cover. She opens it and... "Oh My! This isn't even the first volume!"

You glance at the front page and see, in stylized font, "VOLUME 11."

"I don't want to know where the others are," you say. "I really don't want to know."

"But, Jooooohn!! Deviant Fantasies!" Rose protests.

"Nope, don't want to know." You insist, putting your foot down...

CLICK.

...Right onto a pressure tile that reveals another hidden chamber.

"...Well, that was lucky," Rose purrs, her ears flexing in amusement.

What you find is.... pretty disturbing. Centered in that hidden chamber is a poster board of photos of Ashler and Bronya, and all sorts of... just... unsavory notes and defaced photos.

"...I take it back," Rose remarks, sounding a bit sick.

You agree, "Yeah, that was Not Lucky at all."


Boldir Lamati and Mierfa Durgas stare at Lynera, who fidgits uncomfortably on the other side of an interrogation table.

"Oh, here's something interesting," Rose says to you while you wait for them to finish their work with the mind magics. "The Grub that Lynera kidnapped was a commissioned mix of the Matesprit and Kismesis mixtures from the members of ALT-13."

"The super unlucky ones??" you ask.

"Yes, apparently they wanted to raise a grub together as a team," Rose explains, holding up the report she's reading for you to see. "They were scheduled to pick the grub up today. And I suppose they probably already have, all things considered."

"Why go after their Grub, though?" You ask. "I didn't see anything about it on the wall."

"If it's in the journal, I haven't come across it yet," Rose agrees. "It does make little sense why they'd go for that grub specifically. I can think of a few other high ranking high profile targets from that same batch."

"Hrm," you frown. "It's-"

"Now," Boldir orders... And then Lynera's crying facade suddenly breaks. She goes calm. Disturbingly calm.

"Well," Mierfa exclaims suddenly. "That was a lot heavier of a mind encryption than I was expecting."

"Damn it all..." Lynera sighs. "You weren't supposed to see through it this quickly."

Boldir whistles disapprovingly, and says, "You're a real piece of work, Lynera. You know that, right?"

A few moments later, Boldir and Mierfa exit the interrogation room while Lynera fusses with cleaning away the eyeliner and makeup that had run while she'd been crying earlier today.

"So," Mierfa begins, "Lynera had Elwurd partition her memories. Real ones, hidden away, and fake ones, to act on a surface level to cover what was going on."

"Too Long, Too Creepy, and Please Don't Read version," Boldir summarizes: "It looks like they were doing all of this to try and replace people by framing their old lives as a murderer and murder victim, then putting the people were pretending to be in the situations they arranged for themselves."

"...So," you frown. "The question is, who did they kill, and who were they going to replace?"

"We don't know," Mierfa answers.

"How can you not know?" You ask. "You were just looking into her memories!"

"Lynera's had the memory of the murder, and every other memory associated with planning it, erased as to the who and why," Boldir answers.

"That's a powerful psychic," Rose muses. "This Elwurd girl could possibly be able to make us see anything or anyone as someone or something completely different."

"I want to talk to her," You decide.


 

"So... they put you and Lalonde the Second Cat on the case?" Lynera smirks as you two sit down across from her. "I suppose that explains it. We were planning that Mallek would get put on it and never dig deeper."

"You really didn't hide your plans well," you say. "Witnesses saw you talking with Elwurd, leaving her hive at the time you claimed to see Bronya and Skylla. You left pictures around her hive of you and her dating, with you dressed up as Bronya. Left a creepy stalker shrine in the basmeent of a hive-"

"I take offense to that last one," Lynera scowls. "It's a Study Hall. For studying homework. Nothing more!"

"What kind of homework includes torture devices and sex toys?" Rose asks,.

"Wouldn't you like to know," Lynera says, coyly.

"I would actually," Rose insists.

"Well, shame for you, I'm not telling," Lynera counters.

"Girls," you interject. "We're getting off topic here. If you were really planning on hiding things from people, you really should have thought about it a bit harder."

"We did," Lynera says. "You want to know who we killed, right?" She leans in close, and then says, "Nobody. We killed a fucking ghost."

You blink, and then realize something critically important.


The body was gone from the morgue.

There one minute, the Corroner turned their back to begin prep for an autopsy, and then gone when they turned back.

What was also gone was the OTHER body in the morgue that was once on a similar operating table.

"This was never about Lynera or Elwurd's longterm plan to replace other trolls," you tell Rose as you stare at the emptied tables. "That was why they'd left that information freely hanging about. Misdirection."

"They had us focusing on a murder that never happened so they could steal a body?" Rose frowns. "Why??"

The sad fact of the matter was that people died on missions. Not always, and only very rarely, but people died. Good people... and some not so good people as well, you'd be willing to bet.

The NID had their bad eggs, and the bad eggs among their bad eggs who flipped sides to work with Anubis. The Tok'ra had a few misguided souls who were keeping secrets from the others. The Jaffa Rebellion was always going to be unsteady until the Goa'uld were all vanquished.

"Raytuu Taaohr," you read off the preliminary mission report. "Part of team ALT-19, after returning from a mission to search an old Mofang base for relics and important information... died of internal bleeding from a presumed ruptured stomach."

"I was going to run through him this morning when the murder victim came in," The Corroner says. "Damn it."


 

Lynera smirks as you return to the interrogation room. "Ah, I guess Elwurd got in and retrieved Raytuu's body and personal effects then?"

"What was it he swallowed," you press for tedails. "Drugs? Technology? Information disks??"

While Lynera doesn't say anything, she does get a drawing look of confusion on her face. Then, she asks; "What do you mean, swallowed? We knew he had something on him but... to swallow it?" She groans. "Of all then fucking- no wonder he died beofre he could hand it off!!"

"What is 'it', exactly?" Rose asks.

"I don't know," Lynera answers. "Elwurd was the one who knew. I had to keep my memories clean of whatever it was lest you get this far in the investigation. Smart move, yes, but now making me question Elwurd's sanity in choosing business partners. Swallowing it wasn't part of the deal. Damn that Raytuu."

"Whatever it was was still in his body when Elwurd took it," you say. "We need to figure out what it was."



"MF8-28C," you're looking over the mission report. "Former Mofang controlled world, abandoned after the Karfin Outpost battle... Home to a particularly nasty fungal plant whose spores expand rapidly when neutralized by stomach acid, triggering cause of death." You sigh.

"They knew mission protocol," Rose says. "They were wearing rebreathers to prevent accidental inhalation and exposure. Whatever it was Raytuu was fetching for Elwurd and Lynera, he made the dumbest decision to put it in his mouth and swallow it rather than captchalogue it."

"Maybe he couldn't," you deduce. "Were they allowed sylladexes on that mission?"

"...No, actually," Rose says, reviewing the protocol. "So that way they couldn't accidentally bring back anything contaminated with the spores. It would all have to be sterilized on a second site before being brought back through the gate to the Beltus."

"...Right..." you sigh. "Damn it. We're back at square one."

"Or maybe not," Rose says. "We know it's Mofang tech that was likely stolen, right? So... let's scan for Mofang energy signatures."


There wasn't any detectable signal anywhere on the planet showing active Mofang technology.

Elwurd either had something that wasn't active Mofang tech, or she'd escaped through the Stargate before the scans happened.

Your name is Okurii Leijon, and while John Sheppard laments that it feels like a loss, you think it counts as a win.

"We did more than they were expecting us to do," you tell him. "Because of you and Rose, we were only two steps behind, instead of five. And if there's one thing I've learned over the years, that leaves us better prepared for the future. We'll have constant electronic surveillance on Lynera, and have Mierfa constantly scanning the guards working on guarding her for mental contamination from Elwurd. When she comes for Lynera, and she will, we'll be ready for Elwurd."

"Well... I guess that's true," John frowns. "I'm not sure I'm ready for a command position though. Do you really still want me being involved in this?"

You look him in the eyes, and say, "Yes. That you're not sure is exactly why I'm certain. We've had our moments here, in the Rebellion, before we had this formalized command structure where we put a plan together by the seat of our pants. We made our losses work to motivate us to win all the more. You'll do the same, I'm sure of it."

"Gee," he says, "thanks for the vote of confidence."

"In the mean time, go home to your girls. Tell them I said hi, and tell them to come see me in the morning. I'm going to speak to Rose and Kanaya in a few minutes about the offer we were talking about earlier this morning as well."

"...How come?" John asks, eyeing you oddly. "Not that I think they're not deserving of promotions or anything but... why them?"

"Call it a hunch," you say. "But I get the feeling the four of you that came back from that awful future are going to do the best that you can do together, and not separated a galaxy or two apart."

"Is there anyone else you're springing surprise 'Go to Atlantis' cards on?" John asks, getting the feeling of the thoughts you're thinking.

"A few people, yes," you smile. "But.... let's keep it a surprise, shall we, as to who goes and who doesn't? It's much more exciting that way, I think."

"Like a prank on the universe, or something like that, right?" John asks, smirking at the thought.

"Yes, something like that, Major Sheppard," you answer. "Something like that indeed."


"She... she wants us to go to Atlantis??" Your name is Jade Jackson, and you feel...

Well, on the one hand you've talked with your dad via Email a few times. He's definitely going to Atlantis the first chance he gets. You'd like to spend the time with him, you think. Time you'd never really gotten, so...

And now Okurii wants... wants you and John and Argo and Rose to-

"Yeah, apparently Terezi saw some vision or something," John shakes his head. "I... All things considered, I think it's a smart idea for us. It's getting a little crowded around here on Diaspora these days, and we really need to get our own place that isn't crashing with Aunt Joey, so..."

On the other hand, John has a point there.

"If I'm pregnant, we'll have to hide it," Argo says. "I don't think they'd let me go if they knew."

"It all depends on timing, then," you decide. "If... if they find a way to go within the next two months... then we'll go. If they can't... we'll have to stay. Do something else."

"That sounds like a plan to me," John says.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 22ND, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/01/0004.

"You wanted to see me, Ma'am?" Your name is Tyzias Entykk, and you enter Okurii Leijon's office on the Beltus with a knock on the door.

"Yes, hi," Okurii smiles. "Take a seat with Jade and Argo. I've got something to ask you three."

You look at the two girls sitting next to each other, and then take the third empty seat next to them.

"Alright," you say. "Ask away."

"How do you three feel about Atlantis?" Okurii asks.

"John talked to us about it last night," Argo says. "We decided that if they find the city soon, yes. We'll go. Otherwise, we might sit it out."

"Alright," Okurii says, then eyes you. "What about you, Tyzias?"

You blink. "I... Sorry, but am I understanding this right? Are you asking me to go to Atlantis when it gets discovered?"

"Yes," Okurii nods.

"But... what about Plan D? And everything else we have going on here in Alternia?" You ask.

"Callie and Dammek think they have things covered with Plan D, and beyond that, let me ask you, Tyzias, what does your current project load out look like for the next week, month, and earth year, in that order?"

"...Clean all the way through, but you never know when things may go downhill, Ma'am," you say.

"And unlike some other scientists I could send, you've got a cleared schedule, you know what you're doing, and you're someone I trust to do what's in everyone's best interests," Okurii says. "Now, I'm not expecting you to make a firm decision yet, but please, do think it over. Talk with your quadrant mates and such, friends, whoever you feel comfortable making this decision with."

"Is there a time limit?" You ask.

"Only that of when they're sure of Atlantis' coordinates," Okurii tells you.

With that, you nod, and exit her office.



"Atlantis huh?" Daraya muses, tossing her shirt she'd crumpled up into a loose ball up and down. "Seems like fun. You think I could volunteer to go along?"

"Probably," you answer from your position of lying flat right next to her on the bed in your room on the Beltus, sighing. "I get the impression Okurii's headhunting certain people only, and letting the rest follow along naturally."

"What about Barzum?" Daraya asks, catching the shirt ball and holding it in place.

You consider that question. "Shit. Yeah. Damn it. I need to talk with her about this too. I can't imagine Doctor Weir would okay her going along."

"Why not?" Daraya asks. "I heard she's bringing along a civilian camera crew."

"Yeah, but..." you frown. "There's a difference there, isn't there?"

"Maybe," Daraya shrugs, then starts tossing the shirt ball up and down again. "But honestly, I don't really see much of one. I heard Diemen say he's thinking of volunteering for it."

"Wha-?" You blink. "But then who'd be taking over chef duty on the Beltus?"

"Jane Egbert, I think he said," Daraya answers. "Or maybe he said she was volunteering too?"

"Last I'd heard she was still on her journey of a thousand world cuisines or whatever absurd number of planets she was up to," you say.

"I dunno, then," Daraya says, "maybe neither of 'em are volunteering? Who knows."

"...You sure you wanna come along with me?" You ask.

"...Lynera's shit show yesterday left a bad taste in my mouth, Tyz," Daraya says, catching and holding the shirt ball again. "I'm going whether Weir wants me to go or not. I don't think I can stick around here for much longer without wondering if I'm about to get my back stabbed in by some ghost."

"Fair enough," you say.... then change the subject off of that thought train. "I guess I need to talk with Barzum, at any rate."

"Field trip?" Daraya asks.

"Yeah... just... where the hell did I put my glasses at?" You ask, squinting. "Can't see a thing past the bed right now."


 

Incidentally, you run into Xefros and Baizli at the Gate room, having just transferred over from ship duty over in Milky Way.

"Oh, Baizli," you begin. "Just the girl I wanted to see, sort of."

"Eh? You going to see Barzum?" Baizli asks, frowning.

"Yes, actually..." you pause, then say. "And also just as actually, Barzum was asking about you last time I was there. Wanted to know if you'd come visit sooner or later?"

"...Seriously?" Baizli asks, her eyes glinting in... well, you certainly hope it's hope at a reunited sisterly bond.

"Well, yeah, but you were off world at the time so..." You shrug.

"Give me like, five minutes to grab a shower and get changed," Baizli says, and then rushes off.

Xefros looks at you oddly. "So... that's a thing that's happening."

"Yeah," you say. "...Okurii asked me to consider a position on the Atlantis Expedition."

"Seriously?" Xefros' eyes widen. "Congrats, Tyzias!"

"It's not set in stone yet," you tell him. "I've gotta talk with people about stuff, so..."

"Right, gotcha," Xefros nods. "Honestly, I'm kinda jealous. Wish I was going but... I gotta deal with all of this Replicator stuff going on."

"Right, the Milky Way situation," you frown. "It doesn't quite feel right going, with that still unresolved."

"Think about it this way, " Xefros says. "Maybe whatever you find over there'll help us resolve the Replicator stuff?"

"...That would be unexpected," you say. "But not unwelcome. Thanks, Xefros."

"Any time," he waves, and then heads off, pausing only to say, "Hey, Daraya. Later, Daraya." as Daraya joins you at the Gate.

"Hi and bye, Xefros," Daraya says in return. "I talked with Okurii, let her know that if you're going, I'm going. And probably are gonna be going regardless."

"Right," you nod. "Just gotta wait for Baizli to get back, then we can head to Haven."

"Ah, Haven," Daraya laughs. "Glubbin' hell, you know what gets me the most? All the time travel shit we got up to over there. I wonder if we'll get any more time travel shenanigans sooner or later?"

"Right, Good point," you check the local date time and your own copy of the Haven Flare Chart.... "Okay, good, we're clear of any time altering solar flares for the next ten hours."

"Awh," Daraya pouts, good naturedly by tone of voice. "So sad."



Haven is Haven. That's all there is to say on the matter regarding Temperature.

You find Barzum out fishing with Latula on the lake, and you pause as she spots you and grins.

She's so happy now.

You really don't want to break her heart any.

"Hey, Barzum," you greet with a short wave. "Sup?"

"Not much, you?" Barzum answers, sounding so cheerful and happy and--

"Well, uh, Baizli's here, waiting by the Gate with Daraya," you say. Taking the hint, Latula gets up, gives you a smile, and heads off in that direction.

Oh, thank you, this can only get awkwarder.

"Oh... Okay," Barzum steels herself, her smile faltering only slightly. "Right. Okay. Is there anything else? Before I dive into that?"

"Well..." You begin. "I got a transfer offer."

"To where?" Barzum asks.

"Not exactly sure yet, but it's probably in another galaxy entirely," you say.

"Are you going?" Barzum asks, and you can hear the uncertainty in her voice.

"I'm not sure yet," you say. "I'm really not sure yet. I... I probably will but..." You shake your head. "I wanted to get your opinion on it."

"Okay," Barzum nods.

And so you talk.

You talk about the potential for discovery, and for all the SCIENCE that could be done, and about how it all could one day save the universe... And you talk about how far away it is.

You talk about how you're not sure you want to leave the comfortable section of life you've carved out for yourself, and how you don't want to interrupt other people's lives.

And you ask Barzum if she'd want to leave Haven behind for such a thing on her own, regardless of whether or not she'd want to come along with you on a mission that might possibly leave you stranded in another Galaxy.

"I suppose that depends," She says.

"On what?" You ask.

"How things with Baizli go."

Oh. Right.

You'd almost forgotten about that.


 

It only just now strikes you how little Baizli has grown since her inexplicable revival. Physically, you mean. For as much as she and her sister have both grown mentally over the sweeps... well...

Barzum towers over her sister, and decidedly looks every bit the elder sister rather than a twin. Hell, even Barzum's hair is longer, going way down to her hips rather than Baizli's roughly shoulder length hair.

You mean, you knew she was SHORT, but damn...

Baizli is TINY.

"So..." Baizli starts rather awkwardly. "How are things going? Are you good?"

"Good. Yeah..." Barzum nods, awkwardly. "How are you?"

"I... I'm okay." Baizli trails off. "I... Well..."

The silence is awkward, and it's telling for how awkward it is that nothing has broken out into a fight yet.

"....So,  um..." Baizli tries, "have you read any books lately?"

"Oh- yeah. A few..." Barzum nods. "I've been trying to catch up on the history since we left. There's... there's a lot that happened. You know."

"Yeah..." Baizli nods. "There has..."

After a tentative moment, they just continue to stand there...

THWUNK. TWHUNK. TWHUNK. TWHUNK. TWHUNK. TWHUNK. CHA-TWHUNK.

And then the Stargate dials in.

WAA WAA! KAWOOOOSH!

For a few moments, nothing happens, then Zebede's voice buzzes through the radio, "Beltus to Haven, come in Haven?"

You radio back, "Haven receiving, go ahead, Beltus."

"Okurii needs you back on Diaspora to look at something," Zebede elaborates. "It's important."

"How important?" You ask.

"Prison Break Important," Zebede answers.

You look at Daraya, who groans, "That was too fast for comfort."

Agreed. So very agreed.


 


"I can see why you wanted me to look at this," You say, staring at the oddly floating mass of structure chinks that was once a Diaspora Guard House's holding cells.

"Yeah, we're not sure if this is what Elwurd was after to begin with, or something she had on her to begin with and planned on using it..." Okurii shakes her head. "Either way, we've got a floating building, with people trapped inside; and two renegades on the run."

You peer up into the floating mass of building, and spot- ah, yep. There's a Mofang Device of some kind floating in the middle of all of that.

"Let's see if I can get us a 302 or a Dragonfly, and equip an Anti-Gravity shield onto it," you begin planning. "Then... we'll fly in and try and disarm that thing."

Getting a 302 was easiest. Retrofittting an Anti-Gravity shield generator onto it would be somewhat harder, given the lack of proper shield emitters to begin with. Getting the 302 to move *slowly* was down right difficult, even with the Gravity Shield keeping it aloft. The things were made to launch and fly at vast speeds, and even at their slowest ground speed, it was still just a bit too fast for what was wanted.

Finding a Dragonfly was harder- one had to be sourced from Cla'dia for some reason, and that took some time to do. Adding the Anti-Gravity shield generator was actually easier, all things considered. Just use an external shield emitter array rather than external hyperdrive array, and there it went. Maneuvoring into position?

Well, while you could certainly go the speeds you need to... the gravity well holding up the building in chunks was what made it difficult.

Flying into what was basically a maze ended up being Daraya's job, and you had to be the ever anxious co-pilot/passenger in the back.

Getting into position takes several minutes of flying and weaving through the floating structure, past all the people caught inside, and then reaching the Mofang Device Core at the center of it.

It's clear that someone's modified it that wasn't Mofang. There's an Alternian Husktop tapped to a ripped open side panel that's swirling around everything. Getting to that is going to be tricky.

Or... maybe not so tricky.

You have Daraya synch up your movement patterns with that piece, and then you jump nout of the dragonfly onto it.

Unsurprisingly, gravity takes over and you land on the plate as if it were the ground. Which it almost definitely isn't.

"Start rescuing the people trapped in here!" you order. "I'll see if I can figure this out."

Daraya nods, and takes off, retracing what path she could to start rescuing people.

There didn't seem to be that many here in this part of the building when this device went off, but even so... it's enough to cause some major trouble.

You open the Husktop's lid and bring up the lock screen.

....The fuck is this shit??

It's... it's...

Oh god, it's a WORD WORM PASSWORD.

One of Dammek's fucking pet projects that he sells on commission to people who like his whole worm-snake-beast-eats-words-letter-by-letter password systems.

You'll admit they're damn tricky to crack if you don't know what the password is.

You grab your radio, and say, thusly, "Okurii? Could you check and see if Dammek sold any copies of his fucking worm password program screens to Elwurd or Lynera, or hell, anyone else suspicious lately?"

"...Why?" Okurii asks.

"Because I'm looking at one of these fucking worm password screens!!" You answer, "But I can't find any sign what the word is and I need him to tell me if he sold any recently because I KNOW he knows how to backdoor this shit, or he knows what password it's set to."

Getting Dammek around takes time best spent evacuating people off of the structure. It takes so long because he has to bring with him a bunch of passwords from people who brought his danged program.

"First thing to narrow it down is the version number," Dammek begins. "What's the sequence of colored dots in the left hand corner show?"

You relay the sequence of tiny, random pixel colors, and Dammek somehow gets "Version 6.81243." out of it, which brings him to a list of three possible password screens he sold during that version number.

"First possible password is 'C U TO KNIFE,' Second is 'SYMPHONY,' and third is 'URSULA'," Dammek reports.

Armed with that information, you start the password game and see that the first two letters available are....

Fuck.

"C or U!" You report, starting to move the danged worm around towards that end of the screen.

"---C!" Dammek tells you. "Then U!"

You snag the C, and its replaced elsewhere on the screen by an R. You grab the U that remains, and its replaced by an F.

Dammek guides you through the password. "T. O. K. N. I. F. E."

And then you're through the password screen.

"Okay, I'm in, going to see what I can do..." You say.

Now this is your time to shine.

You figure out how to reprogram the device fairly simply. The problem is getting it to reverse the gravitational fields in exactly the same way that they were generated. Hard because things have moved in the mean time, and harder still because you're removing people from the area.

....Screw it, you'll just add in a time delay, have Daraya fly you out of here and let everything come down where it will as controlled as you can make it.

You add in the changes and then wait for Daraya to return with the Dragonfly to get you out of here.

Once she does, you hit enter and-

[Warning: to confirm changes, pLease enter password.] pops up on screen.

"Oh fuck me," you swear, and then up pops another fucking worm password screen. "Another one!!"

The first letters that pop up immediately are R and U.

....

"Are You Kidding Me!?" You yell, and quickly go for the U because fucking hell why the hell not!?

It works, your other option besides R is now M, so you go for the R.

It works, an S appears.

URSULA. Who the hell is Ursula and why is it the second catch-all password for security reasons??

Whatever. You fill it in, and the password is accepted and take a standing leap towards the ship.

You feel gravity reversing in the process- much, much too quickly.

"Fuck!" You gripe as you land on the Dragonfly's back and scramble into the back seat. "Time Delay got screwed by the password screen. Those fuckers!!"

"Getting us out of here, then," Daraya says, and rockets you both out of the now starting to collapse structure.

You're thankful for the anti-gravity shield, otherwise the escape would have probably been more perilous than it otherwise would have been.

Still... it's just as much of a relief that you make it out alive.

You and your Matesprit are going to be spending a lot of time in bed after this.


 

EARTH DATE: FEBRUARY 23RD, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/02/0004.

Your name is Mallek Adalov, and you hand the husktop over to Okurii Leijon back at her desk with a resigned shrug and a "Sorry, but it was a clean comp to begin with. Nothing was stored on it beyond the program that reprogrammed the Mofang Gravity Device, and it was never connected to Wifi at all, so... Nothing I could find on it."

"I figured as much, but thanks anywas, Mallek," Okurii says. 'Actually, while you're here... May I ask you a question?"

"Uh... sure?" You blink. "What about?"

"How do you feel about a long stay in an Ancient City lost to history?" Okurii asks.

"Atlantis?" You ask.

"Atlantis," she nods.

"Are you asking me if I want to go or is this a job offer?" You ask.

"Bit of both, really," Okurii shrugs. "Tyzias hasn't gotten back to me yet on whether or not she's going, so... If she says no, I'd like to offer you the spot."

"And if she says yes?" You ask.

"I might give you a spot anyways," she answers.

"...I'll think on it," you answer.

"Fair enough," she smiles and nods.

And so you leave.

You end up passing by Tyzias and Barzum on your way to the Cafeteria.

Huh. Rare to see that girl out and about off of Haven.

"Hey, Mallek," Tyzias greets. "How'd it go with the husktop?"

"Nothing there," you answer with a cool shrug. "What about you?"

"We're going to see if Okurii will let me tag along with the Atlantis Expedition," Barzum says.

"Ah," you nod. "So you two wanna go, huh?"

Barzum looks at Tyzias, hesitantly.

"You can tell him," Tyzias says, and Barzum nods before speaking.

"I... I think it's time I reach out and try something new," Barzum says. "Baizli... seeing her yesterday let me realize that I've reached about the point of growing I can do on my own. I want to try doing something new."

"Well, good luck with that," you say.

"Thanks," she nods.

"What about you?" Tyzias asks. "I feel like I've seen that look on your face in the Mirror recently."

"...Atlantis is..." You whistle. "It's far and away and honestly I could see myself doing something fun out there. But... well. I dunno. I'm gonna think on it a bit more."

"Good luck with that," Tyzias nods, and then she and Barzum head on down to Okurii's office.

...Atlantis bound, huh?

"Well," you muse aloud. "It can't be any worse than hanging around here, can it?"

Then you realize.

Yeah. It might be a whole ton worse than hanging around a relatively quiet galaxy while dealing with a Replicator Invasion on a whole separate front.

...The only real question is... do you wanna stick around and deal with the known, or venture forth and deal with the unknown?

Chapter Text

THOUSANDS OF YEARS AGO...

THE CONTINENT OF ANTARCTICA.


Over the soon to be frozen tundra, a Jumper flies across the landscape, heading towards its destination: a City of design like none other.
The Ancient City Ship- ATLANTIS.

On a small outpost structure attached to the side of the central tower, two Atlanteans looked at each other sorrowfully. The man grimaces as the woman takes his hands, whispering prayers for him to return someday.

And with a shake of his head, the man sees the Jumper returning to the City, and he makes his leave.

There's a jolt as the woman looks upwards, and watches as the City of Atlantis rises up into the air and takes off for the heavens.

And she cries, knowing that her love will almost certainly never return.

The storm of ice that followed that night would bury her, the outpost, and the traces of the plague from the caverns to the north that had begun ravaging their race, forcing this particular exodus.


 

O<--STARGATE: ATLANTIS-->O


 

EARTH DATE: MARCH 1ST, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/08/0004.

Flying across the frozen landscape, one could mistake the endless fields and hills of ice as something more akin as something from a dream than anything real.

But from the perspective of a helicopter pilot stationed there, doing that flying right then and there, it was something more akin to a dream realized and made real.

And then, it was a dream made into a nightmare one hellish day. Remains of Goa'uld vessels could be seen dotting the landscape even now as the pilot flew his crew overhead.

"Apache, Blackhawk, Cobra, Osprey…" The pilot, one JOHN CHRITON, lists off his service to the General next to him.

"It's a lot of training for the Antarctic," Said General, one Jack O'neill says.

"It was the one continent I never set foot on," the pilot says.

"It's one of my least favorite continents," O'neill remarks.

"I kind of like it here," the pilot says.

"You LIKE it here?" O'neill asks of the pilot, incredulous at the concept.

"Yes sir. Be there in about ten minutes sir," the pilot says.

"Yes, but how much warmer is it going to be there?" one of the other two passengers remaining within the helicopter, a girl named Jade Jackson, inquires.

The other passenger, one Major John Sheppard, laughs. "Probably warmer than you'd think. Igloos are a thing, after all."

And then their destination comes into view, the ANTARCTIC RESEARCH FACILITY.

Looking at it from above, one would think it almost quaint, how simple and unassuming it was.

And yet the giant dome set up over the hole in the ice was surrounded on sides by the still being collected wreckage of the Al'kesh and Death Gliders that dotted the landscape, reminding all who saw it that but a few short months ago, Anubis had come knocking, and brutally ripped the cloak off of the idea of "A Classified Stargate Program."

As the Helicopter landed outside the facility without incident, General O'neill turned to look at the pilot, and remarked, "It's been bugging me all this trip. You look really damn familiar. You happen to have any relatives named Cameron Mitchel by any chance?"

"Yes sir, that'd be my cousin," the Pilot remarks. "Papa always said we were twins separated by a couple years of birth."

"Huh, good to know," O'neill remarks.

Inside the dome, rested a security checkpoint, several surface based labs, and an elevator heading down into the deepest parts of the facility hidden beneath the ice.

It was always a tricky ride down- sometimes the cold made the gears lock up, or the treads shatter. The emergency breaks always kicked in during such cases, but what should be a two minute ride tops sometimes became five, or sometimes ten or even fifteen.

It always proved wise to bring a book.

Or, as the case may be, traveling companions to talk to.



You are now JOHN SHEPPARD, and you listen absentmindedly to the conversation between General O'neill and Doctor Weir as you descend the elevator down to the bottom of the ice tunnel.

Your attention is tuned mostly to Jade at the moment. She's sort of bouncing up and down inside her snow boots, her fingers are tapping on the metal railing through the gloves, and her eyes are darting about as meter marker after meter marker drags slowly, agonizingly past.

"So, Doctor Jackson says he thinks he's found the complete Gate Address," Doctor Weir is saying, and that draws both of your attention to her and General O'neill.

"Really now?" General O'neill asks. "To where exactly does it point?"

"Beyond the fact that he's certain it's an Eight Symbol Address, we only just found the final symbols and were about to run it through the spatial plotter when your helicopter arrived," Weir says.

"Well, that's something-" And then General O'neill stops short as a commotion from below heralds a glowing drone shooting up the tunnel, and rocketing past you and going up and up and-

"Turn it around, Carson!! Stop it!" Someone's voice from below heralds the following movements.

As you follow the drone's path through the metal grating that makes up the enclosure for the elevator, you notice the damned thing suddenly turn on its heel and rocket back down towards you...

On a path straight for the fucking elevator.

"RAAAH!" Jade yells, throwing her hands out and suddenly, the drone stops in its tracks with a green aura surrounding it.

It starts squirming like crazy.

"Someone shut that drone off!" Weir yells down. "NOW!!"

After a few more moments, the Drone stops its squid like squirming, and looses its yellow glow.

Jade sighs in relief as she uses her powers to carefully bring it down into a side-long orbit next to the elevator as it continues to head down to the bottom.

"Never a dull moment around here, is there, Weir?" O'neill asks.

"No, there's not," Weir answers.

You arrive down on the ground floor a minute later, and as you step out of the Elevator, Weir goes to ream out whoever triggered the Drone, meanwhile, you escort Jade over to the table it had clearly broken free from.

"Thanks, Jade," greets one Keiko Ayano- inter dimensional traveler from another quantum world. "I was so scared when it burst out of the cage. Poor Pina nearly got run over!"

There's a chirp as she says that, and you look Keiko over. She's wearing a large fluffy snow jacket just like everyone else in here, but hidden deep in the hood, you spot a tiny little dragon wearing its own tiny little jacket, looking so very, very out of place from everything else.

That would be Pina, her dragon, looking frightened and scared and vowing never to leave the safety of Keiko's jacket ever again.

"I'm just glad you didn't get run over, Keiko!" Jade says, loading the drone back into the cage it busted out of with her powers. "How're things back on Aincrad going?"

"Dunno," Keiko shrugs. "I... I've kinda been spending most of my time here, really. Sure, Silica sends me an email every now and then when she's visiting the SGC, but... she's really busy trying to help get Alfheim back in a non war-torn order right now. And sis is really... Um... Busy with her boyfriend right now so..." She giggles. "I've just been avoiding home like the plague."

"So..." You say, changing the subject. "That's one of the drones, isn't it?"

"Yup," Keiko nods. "It's aaaanncieeennnt. And I mean, like, in the age sense. This thing is a relic compared to similar tech back on Aincrad."

"Technology marches on!" Jade says.

"Speaking of," Keiko says as you all watch as Weir and O'neill head elsewhere. "What the hell set that drone off?"

You three walk over to the chair area, and find one Doctor Rodney Mckay consoling a Scottish man, whose name tag reads "DR. C. BECKETT."

"C'mon, Carson," Mckay says. "It wasn't that bad!"

"Sometimes I wish I never had this stupid ATA Gene!" The Scottish man, 'Carson Beckett' you'd guess, complains. "Wouldn't have found it otherwise. Bloody pain in the rear is what it is."

"So..." Jade strolls up to him. "You're the guy who nearly got us blown up, huh?"

"Uhh.." Beckett blinks. "...Should I say Yes or No because quite frankly I feel like I'm being stared at by a hungry wolf."

Jade gives a wolfish grin, and sprouts some wolf ears as she takes her hat off. "Well... I already ate lunch, but stopping a rampaging drone might have worked up quite the appetite."

"Oh what in the blazes-" Beckett stares. "That's physiologically impossible."

Jade makes her ears flick flat against her head as she whines, "Hey. That's not nice, you know."

"Er- Well- I-" Beckett stammers.

"Maybe I should eat you anyways!!" Jade says, making her ears flick upwards into an alert position. "How's that sound?"

Beckett stammers out a few more things before you start laughing.  

You laugh, and Keiko laughs, and Mckay pats the man on the shoulder. "She's messing with you, Carson."

"Oh, well that's a bloody relief," Beckett gripes. "I didn't mean to set off the drone, anyhow. Rodney told me to sit in the chair and bring up the star map but I keep telling everyone I don't have that kind of frim control."

"Not like me, you mean," Keiko says.

"No," he shakes his head.

"Ah, Sheppard," Mckay snaps his fingers. "Keiko was just saying how she was hoping you'd get a chance to sit down in the chair while you were visiting."

"Right. Yeah..." You frown. "Could Keiko just... lock down the drones for the moment incase I accidentally set something off that really shouldn't be set off?"

"Ah, yeah," Keiko nods. "That's a good idea.:"


 

"Jim," Daniel says.

"Jack, Daniel," you correct him.

Yup. You're General Jack O-postrophe-Neil. On duty. For a briefing. After almost getting your elevator shot down by a rogue drone.

You really hate Antarctica.

Also, you could really go for a beer right about now for some reason.

"Anyways, now that we're all here and safe and sound," Doctor Weir begins. "Doctor Jackson?"

"Right, so," Daniel goes to a whiteboard with gate symbols written on it. "We recently uncovered the complete set of Gate Coordinates, and have plotted them into the long distance calculator. Atlantis is, as far as we can tell given at least ten thousand or so years of interstellar drift, in the Pegasus Galaxy."

"...Pegasus, you say?" You muse. "Are there any Unicorns mentioned in the database by chance? Perhaps some winged horses?"

"Ah- no," Daniel says. "But there's a catch."

"There's always a catch, Daniel," you say. "What is it?"

"As far as we can tell the address itself is a customized address, similar to Praclarush Taonas, but meaning 'Lost to Endless Waves' instead," Daniel explains. "We're not sure if the coordinates we've been able to decode are accurate anymore for subspace connections. For all we know, Atlantis could be somewhere off in the Andromeda Galaxy or, hell, even in Alternia or the Asgard galaxies."

"Meaning...?" You ask.

"Meaning we won't be able to confirm Atlantis' location in space unless Atlantis dials back to Earth and we use Doctor Ohphee's Caller ID program to get the address confirmed," Daniel summarizes. "Basically... if we can't connect back to Earth from Atlantis, we'll have to assume worst case scenario when sending the Prometheus or a 304 after them to Pegasus, which may not even be where Atlantis is with regards to the rest of the galaxy."

"...Yeah," you say after a moment of digesting that. "I really could go for a beer right now." You look to Weir, "You got any Jack Daniels lying about? Chilling in the snow outside, perhaps?"

She laughs a bit nervously as she considers the response to that, and Daniel frowns in confusion. But before either of them can say anything....

"Doctor Weir!!" Doctor Mckay comes hurtling into the room. "You have to come see this!"

You're all taken then to the control chair, where, much to everyone's awe and surprise...

John Sheppard is sitting in the chair with a hapless, confused look on his face.

There's a holographic starmap above him, showing something like three galaxies, fully mapped out, with a fourth forming next to it.

"What the...?" Weir stares at it.

"It's mapping out Alternia into the Chair's database repository directly from John's memories of the local starmaps," Jade explains, excitedly, just like her dad on one of his tangents.

"...Okay, so one of those is Milky Way," Weir says, pointing at the map. "What are the other two?"

"Asgard Galaxy," Keiko says, pointing at one of them. "As for the other one... It has one major glowing Gate listed on it, matching Earth's."

"Atlantis," Mckay says, pointing at the glowing dot.

You look to Daniel, and ask, "So... is that Pegasus?"

"Yeah," Daniel nods. "That's Pegasus."

You look to Weir then, and say, "I'll okay the expedition."



EARTH DATE: MARCH 7TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/14/0004.

"TODAY! On !NSIDE ACCESS! The Alternian Pop Idol Chixie Roixmr comes to visit and play one of her songs!" A clip of Chixie smiling and waving at the camera plays. "Can Danville the Weatherman predict the next perfect storm of Fashion Disasters?" A foolishly dressed man fumbles on screen with an umbrella. "And, the MAIN SCOOP of the Day: The Atlantis Expedition, covered by Yoooour Host!! JULIA DONOVAN!"

The camera focuses in on the blonde haired reporter at the desk of the !nside Access studio set.

"Good evening, America. Welcome to !nside Access," Julia begins. "Tonight we cover the Atlantis Expedition. For those of you who have been off the grid the last several months, by use of an Alien Device known as the Stargate, Earth has gained allies and access to technologies here on Earth used to defend the planet from threats of an inter-galactic nature. The Stargate, and other devices like it, were originally built by a race of beings we now call the Ancients. And it is these Ancients who left behind clues to find a City, thought lost for the ages..." The camera zooms in on Julia's face, fading out as she says, "The Lost City of Atlantis is now within reach."

Images of men and women of various countries and planets cycle by, as Julia narrates.

"Many of Earth's countries have put forth their best and brightest- scientists, military, and civilian alike. Those of our Allies from other worlds have also volunteered some of their own to travel once more out into the stars, reaching for the City of the Ancients, once thought lost beneath the waves."

The visuals cut to a scene within the SGC, of the Stargate spinning to live and dialing out while a probe sits, ready to travel through.

"We know there is a room on the other side of that connection, and viable life support just within reach," Julia continues, even as MALP telemitry flickers on screen. "Today, the Atlantis Expedition, fully gathered at Stargate Command beneath Cheyenne Mountain, take their leave of the Milky Way Galaxy for realms unknown within the far, Distant Pegasus Galaxy. Leading them is Doctor Elizabeth Weir-"

The image of the woman is only on screen for a moment before the Television abruptly ends, and a man hastily dials a speed dial number on his phone.

"Come on, Elizabeth... Come on..."

"We're sorry, but the number you've dialed is out of service area. Please try again la-"

The man hangs up, and he places his head in his hands, wondering just why she'd left without telling him about it first.

An hour later, when he went to check the mail, he'd find a DVD that Elizabeth had sent him.


 

Down in the depths of Cheyenne Mountain's 28th' level, there was a flurry of activity as people in identically designed costumes went to work preparing everything they needed for the move. Elsewhere, those who weren't yet up to speed were being brought up to date on key details by those in the know:

"We think the Gene is a key the Ancients used to allow only certain members of their kind access to specific technologies, and in some cases, double restricted to require two users of the key to access power sources such as the Zero Point Energy Modules."

"Six points plus a Point of Origin make a lock locally, but an extra eighth glyph as we're using goes to a whole other galaxy."

And in cases where people were just trying to be out of the way of other people, they chatted about inane things, possibly bragging about this or that:

"I narrowed it down to about three things, but after a week, it just kind of fell into place…"

Or, they ran into the communication issues that came from not yet having traveled through a Stargate.

"I don't- Sorry." One Lieutenant Aiden Ford calls out, "Does anyone else here speak whatever language these guys are speaking??"

Everywhere, tiny camera boxes mounted to the front of everyone's uniforms recorded everything for the Documentary Crew run by Emmett Bregman, who were similarly double checking their main pieces of equipment, and preparing to go through.

In the Gate Room, Beckett is arguing with a man whose military camouflage uniform stands in stark contrast to the rest of the uniforms that everyone else is wearing and whose name badge reads BATES. "Look, I just need a couple minutes to finish my work and you're not helping by standing there!"

Colonel Sumner steps past a couple of technicians off of the Gate's Ramp, and steps over to the argument.

"Hey, Beckett, Everything in here has been double-checked and triple-checked and cleared for takeoff. Leave it alone." He orders.

"Look, Colonel, I don't answer to you," Beckett says to the man.

"He said the same to me, Sir," Bates informs the Colonel.

"That's what your sidearm's for," Sumner tells him.

In the control room, Doctor Weir stands at the ready as everyone mills about her.

"Are we there yet?" General O'neill asks as he enters the room.

"We're just waiting on Doctor Mckay to finish securing the ZPMs from Alfheim and Alternia," Weir informs him.

Down in the old Quantum Mirror Lab, Keiko Ayano and Rodney Mckay finished sealing up the two crates full of ZPMS from the two given worlds previously mentioned.

"Hey," Silica, Keiko's cat eared dimensional twin, says, opening her arms wide.

Keiko moves over and accepts the hug from her counterpart, giving one in return.

"Stay safe, and try to land on your feet," Silica says.

"You too," Keiko nods.

Meanwhile, approaching the Gate room were five key individuals. Everyone in the know quickly backed off to give them the space they needed.

All ranking as Majors in the Alternian Military, despite two of them appearing as fully blooded humans, were John Sheppard, Jade Jackson, Kanaya Maryam, and Rose and Argo Lalonde. Their uniforms signified it, and trailing behind them by not much distance at all were the Alternian and other Allied members of the expedition team who would be joining them. Leading the front of that group were the following:

Presently speaking up a storm was Tyzias Entykk, and on either side of her were Daraya Jonjet, Tagora Gorjek, and Aradia Megido. Just behind them were the Tok'ra representatives, Jolinar and Lantash and their hosts, clones of Jack O'neill and Samantha Carter. One Roxy Lalonde hummed a tune as she followed behind them.

There were others, coming along further in the back, but they simply didn't have the air of importance around them that was practically oozing off of the lot of them like neon signs, shining in the night...

Admittedly, that latter part was helped out somewhat by way of Argo and Rose's shared neon fur cat-traits, and Argo's specific glowing orange crow wings.

They arrived at the front of the line, in the Gate Room, and John gave a friendly smile and nod to Colonel Sumner. "Colonel."

Sumner says nothing to the man who by all counts should still be a boy, staring at him coldly instead.

Before John can say anything, Doctor Weir and Doctor Jackson enter the room, and Weir heads to the top of the ramp.

"Can I have everyone's attention please??" Weir calls out, and all eyes go to her. "Alright, we're about to make a connection. MALP telemetry from a previous dial out has indicated a working, viable atmosphere. We know that the power drain to the external grid amplifier means we've got about a twenty-eight minute window to get everything through, rather than the standard thirty eight."

She pauses, then says. "That said, we don't know if the situation has remained unchanged since our last connection. We'll be connecting to the MALP we sent last week, and verifying. Once we're sure, we're doing this in one go. Everything in ONE. SHOT. We're not going to shut the gate down during the middle of it to pause and recover. The amount of recharge time would mean we won't be getting another attempt at this for a week if we did so."

She looks around the room. "Now, every one of you either volunteered for this mission, or was given the choice of accepting a placement on the Expedition. You represent over a dozen countries, and atleast three planets worth of people and interests. You are the best and brightest, and in light of the adventure we're about to take, you're also the bravest."

Locking eyes briefly with General O'neill in the control room, Weir takes a moment, then concludes. "That said, we have no idea how the Atlantis Gate's dialing computer is designed on the other side, or what state the City itself is in. The fact of the matter is, there's a severe chance we may never be able to dial out from Atlantis at all. In which case, in one week's time, when the dialer has recharged, Earth will be contacting us, or attempt to do so. If for whatever reason we are unable to reply to them, in a second week's time, they will launch a ship to the coordinates retrieved from the Ancient Database. Even so, there's a risk we may never be coming home." She takes a moment, and says, " I'd like to offer you all one last chance to withdraw your participation."

Nobody responds to that.

"Begin the Dialing Sequence," Weir nods, and then steps off the ramp as the Gate spins to life behind her.

"Let me make something clear, Major," Sumner grunts, low toned, to John. "You and yours are not here by my choice."

"Chevron One Encoded."

"I'm sure you'll warm up to us once you get to know us, Sir," John replies with a smile, even as Jade snorts.

"As long as you remember who's giving the orders," Sumner counters as Chevron Two is "encoded."

John smirks, "That would be Doctor Wier, right?"

Sumner glares at the man for a moment, then turns away.



You're once again General O'neill. You can feel the excitement in the air.

"Chevron Three Encoded," Walter reads off as Doctor Weir rejoins you in the control room.

"Nice speech," you tell Weir.

"Thank you, General," she says.

"Chevron Four Encoded."

Mckay joins you in the room, along with Little Keiko, and her pet dragon Pina.

"Batteries Packed?" You inquire.

"Oh, yeah," Mckay nods.

"Chevron Five Encoded."

"Kitty litter?" You inquire.

"Dragon litter," Keiko counters. "Yes."

"Good," you nod.

"Chevron Six Encoded."

"This is it," Weir says, nervousness and excitement all over her face.

"Yup," Mckay says, quietly.

"Chevron Seven Encoded."

"Seriously, Rodney, Calm down," Weir teases him. "You're embarrassing me."

Dryly, Mckay replies, "I've never been so excited in my entire life."

"Chevron Eight..." Walter smiles. "Is Locked."

WAAA WAAAA! KAWOOOOOOOOSH!

You restrain a pleased smile at the slightly larger that usual explosion of water. Everyone applauds, and you're not sure why you're holding it back.

"MALP Telemetry retrieved," Walter reads. "....Status unchanged."

You look to Weir as she looks to you, and you tell her, "Doctor Weir, you have a go."

"Thank you..." She pauses, then nods, "Sir."

And then she turns and hurries down to the Gate Room.

"Let's go, people!" Sumner orders. "Security teams One and Two, you're up first. All other personnel will follow on our signal. Once on the other side, keep moving, clear the debarkation area. On my lead..."

"Hold on Colonel!" Weir runs in, donning her pack. "We go through together."

"...Fair enough," Sumner allows, and his team, plus Weir, head to the Gate.

Weir pauses to smile back at you, and give a nod, before stepping through the Gate.

You glance down to the Gate Room, see Daniel talking briefly with his daughter as she starts to head up to the ramp with John and the rest of those crazy kids.

Daniel's eyes meet yours, and you give him that 'Go, do the thing,' look that you think you'd given him at least during one visit or another on Abydos.

Either way, he gives a nod, and then goes to join his group in prepping to head through.

"All clear," Sumner radios. "Looks good."

You lean over to the intercom, and give the order, "Expedition team, Move Out!"

And with a quartet of nods, John, Argo, Jade, and Rose step through the gate. Kanaya follows them through a moment later.


 

The green wormhole spirals out into space, stretching, becoming slightly more translucent as a slightly blueish hue infects its way in, making the vortex something more of a tealish color instead.

A second, stronger connection reaches from the other side, merging with your side of the wormhole, and it screeches. It screeches like MAD. It twists and turns and you swear you see the wormhole overlapping itself in places.

And then it comes barreling down towards a planet covered in water, crashes through the ocean, through the dark, and then you briefly see a city before-

SCHLORP! SCHLORP! SCHLO-SCHLORP!

Your name is Jade Jackson, and the four of you step foot into the dim, dark, badly illuminated city of Atlantis.

The Gate continues to spit people out behind you, as you all step forwards into the dark, lighting up the immediate surroundings with the flashlights on your P-90s, and Argo and Rose's neon bio-luminescence tricks.

"Everyone else, find a place and park it, keep the Gate Clear," Sumner orders. "Security teams, secure the area."

You approach the stairs in front of the Gate, the Ancient writing on them starts to light up, ascending section by section towards an upper level.

"Who's doing that?" Weir asks.

You glance at John, and he gives you that look that says, "I don't know if it's me or not, alright?"

Your group ascends the stairs, searching around even as more and more of the lighting in the room kicks on- usually right when someone is walking towards that area.

"Security Teams, any contacts??" Sumner asks.

"None, sir," a team radios.

"Team Four, negative, Colonel," another team radios.

"There's nobody here but us," John radios. "I can't feel any air disturbances that aren't from us."

"Doesn't mean there isn't somebody here doing this," Sumner says, even as some more lighting kicks on as you four enter what appears to be the tarp covered equivalent of the SGC Control Room.

In fact, lights seem to kick on from underneath the tarps as well.

"I think the City's doing it," Rose deduces.

"On its own?" Kanaya asks over the radio. "Can it do that?"

"Well... This is familiar," Keiko remarks as she emerges from the Gate, and takes a spot near Kanaya. "What's that about something doing what?"

"Lights are turning on by themselves," You inform her.

"Oh, yeah. Standard Motion Sensor response for this kind of Smart Building," Keiko answers. "Bit slow on the uptake though. Might either be cause its old, or low on power."

Mckay hops up the stairs and joins you, eagerly tossing off tarps to find what's beneath them.

Argo meanders over to a stained glass window, and peers upwards. "Oh... wow..."

You go over and look, peering upwards...

Holy. Fucking. Shit.

"That's got to be miles of ocean above us," you whisper.

"Lost to Endless Waves indeed," Mckay remarks, pausing in his work to look out the window with you.



"That's everyone," Sumner reports as the last person and piece of equipment comes through the gate.

"General O'neill," Weir radios next. "Atlantis Base offers greetings from Pegasus Galaxy. You may cut power to the Stargate when ready."

"Just a moment, Doctor," General O'neill says, and after a few moments of waiting, with one last SCHLORP, a bottle comes rolling through the Gate, rolling to a stop at Weir's feet as the General says, "Good luck, Atlantis Expedition." And then the Gate shuts down.

Weir picks the bottle up, finding it to be a CHAMPAGNE BOTTLE, with a note on it written to say "Bon Voyage--Gen. Jack O'neill" along with a cutsey, hand drawn winking smile face.

Weir chuckles.



All across the city, people searched to find room.

A conference room was discovered, hallways and corridors lit up as people wandered through them, and up above the Gate Room, Keiko and Kanaya discovered a towering room full of a certain type of ship.

"Jumpers!" Keiko squeals. "I knew it! I knew they were designed for something else than ferry-jumping!"



"Doctor Weir, you need to see this," someone radios to you as you settle your bag down in the room you think will become your office.

"I have a lot of things to see," you say in return. "Just be careful."

You head your way into the control room, watching as Mckay works on checking everything, and Major Sheppard and his team try not to touch anything, but seem to have it react to their presence anyways.

"It's amazing," you say. "It's like the entire complex is sensing our presence and coming to life."

"I'm pretty sure this is their Control Room center," Mckay says. "That's the DHD, some of this is probably power control systems, computer interfaces-"

"Hey," you smile. "Why don't you find out where power generation is first? We may need to use those ZPMs sooner rather than later."

"Right," Mckay nods. "I'll get on that."

And then your radio buzzes, "Doctor Weir, Colonel Sumner." Sumner begins, "I'm three levels down from you. We need to talk."

"Right away," you say. Then, you smile at Major Sheppard's group and say, "Care to join me?"

Rose Lalonde stays behind as Kanaya Maryam and Keiko Ayano descend the stairs from above, leaving Sheppard, Jackson, and Argo Lalonde to follow you.

You find Sumner soon enough, and he begins his report. "We've only been able to secure a fraction of this place. It's huge."

"So it's almost certainly the Lost City of Atlantis?"

"I'd say that's a good bet," Sumner says, pausing at a large glass door leading out onto a balcony that you can't access for the moment.

It has a much better view of the city sprawling out infront of you. Spires and massive structures and all sorts of odd shapes, badly illuminated by the depths of the ocean above you filtering out most of the light.

"We've already come across a few areas that are showing signs of flooding," Sumner says. "Whatever's holding that water out isn't doing a good job right now."

"It's a force field," Jade Jackson says. "I can feel it up above us, surrounding the city... It's keeping the ocean out of the city's vital areas, but the more we spread out the weaker the shield is going to get."

You immediately make a snap decision, "Everyone, this is Doctor Weir. Unless you're looking for the Power Generation Areas, stop exploring immediately and return to the central tower."

"Ma'am?" Sumner asks, confused.

"We're not sure how much power we have left, and exploring the city may drain unreasonable amounts of power that we can't spare at the moment," you continue into the Radio. "So if it uses power, shut it down and back away."


 

Your name is Argo Lalonde, and you feel all sort of twisted up in your stomach area as you feel the potential of two bouncing timelines within your head. One where everyone drowns, one where you don't.

Oh god, why did this have to happen for??

That's when Doctor Beckett enters the control room, "Doctor Weir, you have to see this."

"What is it?" Weir asks.

"Before you told us to halt power consumption, I'd found a Hologram Chamber. I thought to take a recording of what it said." He finds a laptop, opens it up, and connects the camera to it.

You all gather around as a recording of a holographic projection of a familiar face, Ganos Lal, appears on screen, paused.

"I didn't catch the beginning because I didn't realize what it was at first," Beckett says, "but we can always review it later when we get power working." He presses play.

"…in the hope of spreading new life in a galaxy where there appeared to be none. Soon, the new life grew and prospered. Here, we began to exchange knowledge and friendship. In time, a thousand worlds bore the fruit of life in this form. Then one day, our people set foot upon a dark world where a terrible enemy slept."

Beckett's camera work pans upwards, showing a starmap, slowly turning from blue to red.

"Never before had we encountered beings with powers that rivaled our own. In our overconfidence, we were unprepared and outnumbered. The enemy fed upon the defenseless human worlds like a great scourge, until finally, only Atlantis remained."

Becket pans back down to Ganos Lal's form, showing the sorrow on her face.

"This city's great shield was powerful enough to withstand their terrible weapons, but here we were besieged for many years. In an effort to save the last of our kind, we submerged our great city into the ocean. The Atlantis Stargate was the one and only link back to Earth from this galaxy, and those who remained used it to return to that world that was once home. There, the last survivors of Atlantis lived out the remainder of their lives. This city was left to slumber, in the hope that our kind would one day return."

The camera recording ends.

"So the story of Atlantis is true, a Great City that sank into the ocean," Mckay muses.

"It just didn't happen on Earth," Beckett agrees.

"The Ancient Greeks must have heard it from one of the Surviving Ancients," Mckay says.

"I don't like the fact they got their asses kicked," Sumner says.

"Yeah, well, unfortunately we're going to have to deal with it," Keiko says, re-entering the room with Rose and Kanaya. "We found the ZPM room. We've got Good news, Bad news and Worse news."

"Good news first?" you ask.

"Good news is: The City's powered by three ZPMs," Rose says. "Two are entirely depleted and the third is reaching maximum drain. When it does, it's dead, and nothing can reverse that except a new ZPM."

"That sounds like bad news to me," Weir says.

"No, the bad news is that the force field holding back the ocean has collapsed to its minimum sustainable distance with what little power it has available," Keiko says. "The City's already flooding in lesser protected areas. The control tower's best protected because of the stargate, probably."

"What if it fails completely?" John asks.

"When, not if," Rose says, shaking her head. "Unless we can re-power the City's shields, it's going to collapse."

"Which brings us to the worst news," Kanaya says. "None of the ZPMs we brought with us seem to work with the City."

"...What?" Mckay asks. "How's that possible??"

"Atlantis is flat out rejecting the ZPMs we've brought," Rose says. "The error message that shows up on the power screen is basically the equivalent of saying we're trying to use Double As instead of D-Cells."

"I think it's the same reason Jonas took us to get a ZPM from Praclarush," Keiko says. "I... I don't think our ZPMs from either Alfheim or Aincrad have the right dimensional signature inside the ZPMs. Atlantis is looking for a very specific energy signature, like a Password, and we're just flat out not capable of providing it."

"That makes a disturbing amount of sense," Mckay mutters.

"So... what now?" You ask.

"We need to find ZPMs local to this dimension," Weir says. "Are there any elsewhere in Atlantis?"

"No," Keiko shakes her head. "I did a scan, the City doesn't have any that weren't already in use."

"Can we use the Stargate?" Sumner asks.

"I haven't been able to find Earth's coordinates in the database yet," Mckay says. "And even if I did, there's nowhere near enough power to open a wormhole back to Earth from a nearly dead ZPM."

"Could we plug a ZPM into the Gate Directly?" Jade asks. "Maybe power it out of the City's Grid?"

"Maybe... but I'd have to take a look at it first..." Mckay trails off.

"What about local gates?" John asks.

"Oh, yeah, that'd be fairly easy. We've found a bunch of local gates that recently were included in a bulk Correlative Update patch and should still be functioning," Mckay points at the DHD. "Fortunately, some Ancient tech still uses good old fashioned push buttons." He pauses, and says, "There's also a shield like Earth's Iris. I'd show it, but... Using Power."

"Well, at least we don't have to deal with any uninvited guests," Weir says. "Colonel, assemble a team. We need safe harbor, or better still, another power source."
Sumner grabs his radio and starts barking out orders.

Weir looks to John and Jade, and says, "Sheppard, Jackson, you're going with them."

"Alright," John nods.

"I'll stay, actually," Jade says. "If the shield collapses, I might be able to hold the ocean back with my powers for a little bit."

"...Fair enough," Weir nods. "Maryam, you're going instead."

"Okay," Kanaya nods.

"Good luck," Rose says, grabbing Kanaya's hand and giving it a squeeze.

"Rodney: Pick an address, start dialing," Weir orders. "Everyone else, start organizing an evacuation if we need to."

"Right," Mckay grins, going to the DHD and pressing a button.

You turn to the Gate to watch as it lights up a glyph in the top chevron and spins it around like... like a digital glyph along the other plates, until it lands in the first chevron.

"That could be a problem," you voice, before Mckay could say whatever he was going to say.

"What is?" Weir asks.

"The Inner Track is digital, not analogue," you say. "We can't manual dial. We *have* to have a DHD."

"We'll worry about it later," Weir says. "We'll prepare a MALP for transit as soon as its open."

Mckay sighs, and then presses the rest of the glyphs in rapidly.

WAAA WAAA! KAWOOOSH!

You take Jade and Rose aside while John and Kanaya head down to gear up.

"What do we do about that?" You ask.

"The lack of a separate inner ring?" Rose frowns. "Not much, really. The Gate is simply physically designed differently. I wonder what prompted the change?"

"I'd say security reasons," Jade says. "The Ancients got their butts whooped by whatever is out there in this Galaxy. They probably changed the Stargate design to keep who-ever it was from using the Gates in ways they didn't want."

"Maybe," you frown. "I'm just worried what that means for us being able to dial Earth."



Your name is Keiko Ayano, and you feel frustrated as you try, in vain, to get Atlantis to accept one of your ZPMs through some code trickery and some external power source devices.

Atlantis DOES accept the Naquadah Generators that was brought through for powering smaller terminals, but it's nowhere near enough output for the Shields...

It's frustrating that your life depends once more on your ability to manage this kind of technology, and it refuses to co-operate!

What is just so wrong about these ZPMs compared to the ones that are already drained??

"Huh?? What now..."

An error prompt box opens, indicating you can't change the programming right at this minute, because there's an uninterruptible program in place. Because of course there is.

You just hope you can solve this before everything goes to hell.



GDO devices were apparently in short supply for the moment, so only two people had them.

Neither of them were you, JOHN SHEPPARD, or Kanaya Maryam, who took the opportunity to disguise herself as human in prep of going through the Gate.

Lieutenant Ford and some other guy you'd never met were given the devices and two short codes to memorize and off you went through the gate, nightvision goggles in hand for everyone but you and Kanaya as you emerge into a forest in the middle of the night cycle of that world.

"...Not that dark," you say, using the Breeze to fill in your awareness of the surrounding area.

Kanaya agrees, "I've seen darker on Alternia."

Everyone else but Ford eye you two with annoyance.

You give the young Lieutenant a smile, even as Sumner orders you to fan out and search the area.

That's when you catch motion in the breeze, two small figures chasing eachother around with a third, taller one nearby observing them.

"Heads up, we've got movement," you inform the team quietly through the radio. "Two small children sized figures, one adult sized figure trailing a bit behind them, running to catch up. Probably locals. Let's try and not scare them to death, shall we?"

You approach the section of the forest when one of the kids comes leaping out of the forest- he stops suddenly upon seeing you and Kanaya and stops in surprise.
The kid's eyes widen in surprise.

The other kid, wearing the ugliest mask you've ever seen, leaps on him, and a moment later, the kid that got pounced shrieks.

Their minder comes running over a moment later, and he throws himself in front of the kids upon seeing a bunch of figures dressed in dark blacks.

"Please! They're just kids!" the man calls out in what sounds like perfectly understandable English.

What the?

You look to Kanaya, question unspoken, 'Did he just speak English? Like, perfectly understandable English without any Gate Translation going on??'

She nods in agreement. That he did.

"Everything okay over here, Sheppard?" Sumner asks, approaching. The man raises a bit from his kneeling pose, starting to ascend to his full height.

"Yeah, Just some kids playing in the dark," you say, raising your hands in a non hostile way to the man. "I'm John. This is Kanaya," you motion to your Sister's Girlfriend. Then, to Sumner, "That's Colonel Sumner. We're travelers. We came through the Stargate?" You motion back at the gate. "Sort of big, ring thing over there?"

"Halling," the man says, motioning at himself similarly to how you did. "Ah... So you're here to trade?"

"Trade," Kanaya says. "Yes. Trade is good. We're here to Trade."

The man sighs, then turns to the kids and says, "Now, how many times have I told you two not to play in the forest after dark? Be glad they were travelers and not Wraith."

"Sorry," the non mask wearing boy says.

Wraith?

You get a chill, remembering Okurii's retelling of Terezi's vision to you.

The man, Halling, turns to you and says, "Tayla will wish to meet with you. Come." He says, and begins leading your group through the forest. Bates tags along, along with a couple other guys you didn't get the names of. Ford and someone named Smitty are ordered to stay to guard the Gate.

"Why did your friends wear masks but you two don't?" the mask-less boy asks you.

"They help you see in the dark," you decaptchalogue the spare you brought along just in case. "Kanaya and I don't need 'em. We can see just fine."

"Woah!" The boy gasps as he hands you the night vision goggles. "How did you do that???"

"Magic," you give a smile.

"Actually, it's a form of technology from one of our home planets," Kanaya says. "It lets us store physical items onto tiny cards." She holds up a card from her Sylladex.

"Can I see?" The boy with the mask asks, and Kanaya hands it to him. "Weeeeird! So this picture is actually the item stored on it?"

"Pretty much," you say.

"These are so neat!!" Maskless boy says, looking through the goggles. "Can I have them?"

"Hey, let me see!" Maskboy takes off his mask, and mask-less hands the goggles over. "Woaaah! Cool!"

Heh. Kids.

Kanaya takes the card back from the boy, and accidentally gets the mask as well. "What is this mask, if I may ask?"

"Wraith," mask-less boy says.

"What's 'Wraith'?" Kanaya asks.

"You don't know?" Mask-boy asks as he takes the mask back and dons it again. He sounds surprised.

"What world do you even come from?" mask-less boy asks.

"Can we go there?" Mask-boy asks.

"A couple galaxies far, far away," you say, "and no, not easily."

As the sun begins to light the horizon faintly, you arrive at a village made up of tents, sitting across a lake from a large set of city ruins. You can see Sumner eyeing them, and the sinking feeling in your gut rises something fierce.

Halling enters a tent, announcing your presence.

"Enter," a woman's voice says, and your group enters.

For a moment, you stare, dumbfounded, as the woman turns around to look at you. You think, just for a split second, that you're looking at Jade, teleported or lost through time or something weird like that.

Then, you realize her hair is just subtly the wrong color, and her facial structure is a bit different. Her voice is all kinds of wrong for Jade's, too, so...  Damn. Not another case of mistaken identity. You almost thought for a moment you'd have an opportunity to introduce Jade to her twin from another galaxy.

"These are the Travelers who wish to Trade," Halling says, before taking his leave with the boys, "Jinto, Wex, Come!"

"Hello," the woman takes a step forwards. "I'am Teyla Emmagan, daughter of Tagan."

Sumner takes the lead, "I'm Colonel Marshal Sumner, this is-"

Sternly, Teyla eyes him, and tells him,, warmth draining from her voice, "We do not trade with strangers."

"Is that a fact?" Sumner grunts.

"Well, then-" You interject, drawing up a bit of Jade's charm for your own. "We'll just have to get to know each other first. Figure out if we'd be good trade partners first and all. Right?"

Teyla considers it, then says, "Each morning, before dawn, our people drink a stout tea to brace us for the coming day. Would you join us?"

"I do love a good cup of tea," Kanaya says.

"My sister insists I have a good appreciation for tea and would hound me to no end if I turned a cup down," you say, smiling. "And there's something you know about us, now." You glance at Sumner, "See? We're practically friends already."


 

The tea is stout. That's really all there is to say on the matter.

Proper introductions are had after that, and you've just started trying to bring up the large mess of trouble you're in with Atlantis' underwater state when Sumner asks about the city.

"The City of the Ancestors is not safe," the man called Toran says.

"We can handle ourselves," Sumner decides.

"The Wraith will come," Toran warns.

"Who are these Wraith?" Sumner asks.

Everyone seems to get nervous at that question.

Warily, Teyla brokers the remark, "We have never met anyone who did not know of the Wraith."

"Well, you have now," Sumner grunts, annoyed by stating the obvious.

"If the Wraith have never touched your world, you should go back there now, and never open the Stargate again," Teyla advises you.

"Oh, we'd like to," you begin. "But we can't. See, here's the thing. We got ourselves into a bit of a bind. We dialed in to a place that's not exactly structurally sound, and the Gate won't connect back the way we came. We were sent to see if we could find an uninhabited world, or someone who would be willing to lend us a hand in finding a place like that."

Teyla considers that for a few moments, then says, "Our people have long held the belief that if we venture into the city, the Wraith will come. However, it is not a belief we have tested in some time, and the curse, if it is real, may not be triggered if an off-worlder were to venture in there."

Sumner requests a brief team meeting outside.

"I don't care what they say. That city is worth a look, not to mention the possibility there could be ZPMs there that they don't know or care about," Sumner says.

"What if the Wraith are the enemy the Ganos Hologram was talking about?" You ask.

"All the more reason for us to have a defensible position should we have to abandon the City," Sumner decides. "Sheppard, Maryam, stay here and find out what you can. Bates, head back to the Gate and report in to Weir. Tell her we'll have answers in a few hours."

"Yes, sir," it's agreed.

You and Kanaya return to the tent, and you say, "Well, it's just us for the moment. Sumner wants to look at the city."

Teyla huffs in amusement, and glances at Sumner, "Your leader looks through me as if I were not there."

"Don't feel too bad about it," you say. "He does that to us too."

"He is quite wary of our presence here," Kanaya agrees. "Needless to say, I think we understand how to handle diplomacy better than he does."

"I find myself in agreement," Teyla says. "So... You truly cannot return to your home world?"

"Nope," you answer.

"Then there is something you both must see," Teyla says, and then leads you out into the forest.



"Annnd... There." Mckay points out the window as there's a flash of light, and bubbles rise up into the air as water floods into another section of the city.

"We need to evacuate the moment Colonel Sumner reports back that it's safe," Weir decides. "I'd hate to abandon the city, but we may not have any other choice."

"So much for Prometheus finding us in two weeks," Mckay gripes.



Your name is Kanaya Maryam, and you're lead into a cave by miss Teyla Emmagan, who lights a torch rather simply with a brief snap of her fingers.

"...Curious," she muses eyeing you both for your reaction. "You barely reacted to such a blatant display. Most strangers who wish to trade with Athos are very offput by what they'd call Magic."

"You should see what Jade can do with a bag of marbles," John says, with a smile.

"Your people have powers as well?" you inquire as you enter the cave's deeper portions.

"Some of us," Teyla tells you. "A few of us are able to predict Wraith Attacks, others can manipulate a basic element here and there. Those who can do both are even more rare. I can generate some brief bursts of fire, enough to cook by, or light a torch, if need be. There have been others with more profound abilities in the past. But whether that is a true story or myth... that remains to be seen."

You enter a large stone chamber, with many many carvings on the walls.

"Someone's been busy," John remarks.

"The drawings in the caves are extensive. Many date back thousands of years, or more," Teyla pauses at a carving of the razing of a city. "This one, for example, predates the destruction of our city by a very long time."

"Seers again?" John asks.

"No," Teyla says. "It happens again and again and again. The Wraith allow our kind to grow in numbers, and when we become fat and plump, they return to cull their human herd."

John shivers, and you can't help but feel the same way, even as Teyla continues.

"Sometimes, a few hundred years will pass before they awaken again. We've visited many, many worlds. I know of none untouched by the Wraith. The last great holocaust was five generations ago, but still, they return in smaller numbers, to remind us of their power."

"Hell of a way to live," John says.

"We move our hunting camps around," Teyla says. "We try to teach our children not to live in fear, but it is hard. As I said, some of us can sense the Wraith coming. That gives us warning." She sighs. "We should go. It will be dark soon."

As you turn to leave, though- you all stop as the torch light catches sight of a carving.

"John-" You say, gasping. "isn't that-?"

"But that's impossible," John says.

"...What is it?" Teyla asks, regarding the carving on the wall.

"How old is it?" You ask.

"...I would say it dates back to just after the time the Ancestors were forced out of the galaxy by the Wraith," Teyla says.

"...Fucking Hell," John grimaces. "Not another time loop."

You're inclined to agree.

There, carved onto the wall of the caverns, is a depiction of Earth and Alternia's Point of Origin Glyphs over a reproduction of the SGC gate room, connected via wormhole to Atlantis' gate room, with water flooding the entire structure.

"You recognize this?" Teyla inquires.

"Yes," You take a moment to decaptchalogue a camera. "It depicts our arrival leading to the flooding of the city we arrived in."

"Someone survived and came back in time," John says. "We need to check and see if they left us a message here somewhere."

"We must not wait long," Teyla advises.

"It won't take too long," you say. "And if we need to, we can always come back."



And thus, leave they did, shortly there after.

A lone necklace was left in the dirt, forgotten and unnoticed, and its true purpose left to lay in the dirt endlessly, and any future plot points it may have affected similarly abandoned by the presence of previous butterflies.

However, the presence of an Ancient Gene did cause the tiny silver disk to activate its homing beacon function.


 

"Man, days are short here," Ford laments as the sun sets. "Very... very short."

"Major Sheppard, this is Colonel Sumner, Come in," Sumner says over the radio.

"Colonel, this is Lieutenant Ford," Ford says, "Majors Sheppard and Maryam are out of radio range at the moment."

"Where the hell are they??" Sumner asks, angry sounding.

"I think that Teyla chick wanted them to see someth-"

And then the Stargate dials in, forcing Ford to duck for cover.

"Defensive Positions!!" He tells Smitty, then radios, "Colonel, we have Gate Activity here!"

WAAA WAAA! KAWOOOSH!

And then three small dart shaped fighters fly out of the gate- their engines buzzing and whirring like crazy....

Heading straight for the settlement.

"Colonel, Three Bandits headed your way!"



Colonel Sumner hears the buzzing, and he turns to look up into the air as he spots the darts heading his way. "TAKE COVER!!" he orders.

A moment later, a beam of light washes over him as a Dart passes overhead, and when it vanishes, so too is the Colonel.



Teyla pauses suddenly in the middle of the walk back to the village, and growls. "The Wraith have Come."

Your name is John Sheppard, and as the three of you break into run for the village, you hear whispers in your mind, and see movement that the breeze tells you isn't there.

Then, the Radio cuts in, Bates panicking, “They’re everywhere! The Air! The Ground- The--!”

“Snap out of it!” You bark back into the Radio. “THEY’RE NOT REAL! JUST PHANTOMS! Focus on the Ships!!”

“Psychic attacks!” Kanaya realizes. “They’re similar to the Clown Chuckle voodoos.”

“You’re quick on the uptake,” Teyla says. “Let us pray the others similarly are!”

And then a DART swoops in over head, and it begins to emit a whirling, whining beam of energy shaped like a cone--

Suddenly, Teyla shoves you and Kanaya to the ground, and the beam passes over her, making her vanish.

Fucking--!

“Kidnap beams,” Kanaya growls. “How low can these Wraith get??”

“Let’s even the odds,” you say, and reach out with THE BREEZE.

You tag the ship that Took Teyla, and notice it on an outbound course for the Gate, along with another. Both likely have people onboard, so you don’t dare take them out...

But the third is fair game, it’s still circling the village.

You grab it in the Breeze and hammer it straight into the ground without a moment’s thought.

Ford radios, “Gate’s dialing again!!”

At about the same time, you radio back, “Ford! Two bogies inbound with friendlies onboard- MEMORIZE THE COORDINATES!”

You watch with the Breeze as the Gate activates, and the Darts slip through before it shuts down again.

You and Kanaya hurry back to the village, and find it in disarray. There are survivors, and much to your dismay, many missing...

Including Colonel Sumner and that poor fool, Bates.

God, fucking, Damn it.

This was what Terezi was warning you about.

Not the NID, not the Trust.... Actual, fucking, enemies called WRAITH.

“Damn it,” you swear, “the one time you drop the metaphor, Terezi. The ONE TIME.”

“John,” Kanaya grabs your arm suddenly, and points at the downed Wraith Dart.

There’s a fucking zombie hand crawling out from the wreckage.

You take out your P-90 and fire three rounds into it for good measure.

It stops dead.

You fire a fourth to make sure it’s down for good.

“It’s dead?” one of the boys... JINTO, walks up to you. “Is it dead??”

“Should be,” you say. “I made sure to crush the cockpit when I crashed the damn ship.”

“You... you crashed it?” Jinto asks. “Are you special like Teyla...?” he stops. “Teyla... where’s Teyla?? Where’s my father??”

Kanaya pulls the boy into a hug, and you look him in the eyes and say, “We’re going to get them back.”


 

Doctor Weir approached Mckay in the Control Room, speaking, “How are we doing? If we can just buy ourselves another day, maybe we could—”

Mckay interrupts, “The city is sacrificing parts of itself in order to maintain these main areas, but catastrophic failure is inevitable. Keiko can’t convince the city to take our ZPMs. There’s some sort of administrative lock preventing her from messing with the consoles programming right now.”

Weir sighs. “Not in my wildest dreams did I hope to find the lost city of the Ancients so completely untouched, so pristine, and we have no choice but to walk away from this?”

“We’ll be saving it,” Mckay says.

“For whom?” Weir asks. “We don’t have enough power to send any messages, and when Earth does come to find us, they’re only going to find a planet covered in water with no way to get down to the city.”

“We’ll get another power source somewhere in Pegasus that the Ancients surely left incase of a problem exactly like this,” Mckay counters the negativity.

“...We haven’t heard back from Colonel Sumner,” Weir confides. “We have no idea what’s out there.”

“We can’t wait any longer,” Mckay says. “It’s time to go.”

Weir nods in acceptance, and steps out onto the balcony overlooking the Gate Room. She turns on her handheld radio, and begins, “Attention, all personnel, this is Weir-”

And then the room shakes violently, as a rumbling fills the air.

Weir takes to the radio, hastily, “STAND BY FOR IMMEDIATE EVACUATION!” She turns to Mckay, “Dial the Gate!”

He starts to do so, only to be interrupted by an incoming wormhole.

“Incoming traveler!” Mckay reports, even as the City’s Gate Shield automatically rises over the Gate.

WAA WAA! KAWOOSH! The splash hits the shield with a resounding crack of energy.

“Reading Lieutenant Ford’s IDC!” A man named Grodin reports.

“Let ‘em in!” Weir says, and the shield lowers a button press later.

A moment later, Sheppard and Maryam lead the Athosians through the gate.

“MAJOR SHEPPARD!” Weir runs down to confront them. “What’s going on!? Who are all these people?!”

“Survivors from the settlement! We were attacked. Sumner and some of our men and the villagers were taken-” Sheppard stops, noticing the shaking. “What’s going on?”

Weir pulls him further away from the Gate as the last of the survivors are ferried through and the gate shuts down.

“We are in no position to help ANYONE right now,” Weir says.

“...Is the shield collapsing?” Sheppard asks.

“Yes, It IS! We’re about to evacuate!” Weir says.

“Going back there is a really bad idea!” Sheppard says. “And anyways, I think we should hold out just a little bit longer anyways-”

“Major Sheppard, the shield is about to fail, and the ocean is about to come crashing in on us. Do you have a better place for us to go?” Weir inquires with a pointed stare.

“No, look, we don’t have to go anywhere at all!” Sheppard tries to tell her. “We found a carving left on the planet and-”

And then everything shakes more- and Mckay yells- “THE SHIELD IS COLLAPSING!!”

“DIALING AN ADDRESS!” Grodin yells.

“WAIT!” Kanaya yells at the same time Keiko comes stumbling up the steps, yelling just the same thing.

Unseen to any of them- a burst of light fires from beneath the City as its Stardrive activates for the first time in Thousands of years.

Grodin’s attempt at dialing the gate halts down as the Gate’s power is cut, and everything begins to move vertically upwards...

“We’re Moving!” Keiko reports.

And upwards does the City of Atlantis ASCEND.

Higher and higher and higher- the city’s shield briefly reconfigured to form a spear like shape to push through the water and make its ascension faster and faster.

And then the central tower breaks through the surface- water cascading off in all directions as the city of Atlantis emerges from its slumber.

The other towers from the other piers emerge, one by one, tallest, to shortest, and then the city pushes past its final little barrior- emerging briefly out of the ocean to ensure that all downwards suction no longer holds a grasp on it before the Stardrive shutters down, and the City comes to rest on the ocean’s surface.

Inside, everyone takes a moment to blink as their eyes adjust to the sudden amount of daylight pouring in through the windows.

“Wh....” Ford stares. “We’re on the surface.”

Everyone in the city moves towards the nearest outwards facing window or door, and finds they can suddenly access the exterior balconies and hallways where available.

Oh, sure, it’s sopping wet, and there is water everywhere draining from everywhere else....

“Like I was trying to say,” Sheppard says to Weir, breaking the awe inspired silence. “In another timeline, Atlantis flooded, but someone traveled back in time and told the Ancients to change things. They left us a message on Athos to let us know the City was going to rise up instead of flood, this time.”

“...Time Travel,” Weir shakes her head. “Well, I was hoping for another day... but it looks like someone else already bought a whole lot more than that for us.”

“That they did,” Sheppard nods. “And speaking of... I need to go find our version of that person and give then a hug and a kiss.”

“What?” Weir turns to stare after him as he saunters off. “Who survived it then?? Who survived all of this??”

John Sheppard just waves it off before finding a rather surprised Jade Jackson just emerging out of a hallway to see what all the commotion was about.

A moment later, Weir gets her answer as John pulls Jade into a hug and the ensuing kiss that follows.

“Wh... what was that for?” Jade asks.

“Saving our lives,” he answers.

“Oh, well in that case-” She kisses him back.


 

 

EARTH DATE: MARCH 8TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/15/0004.

ATLANTIS EXPEDITION: DAY ONE.

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: MARCH 8TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/15/0004.

ATLANTIS EXPEDITION: DAY ONE.

People bustled across the City, hurrying to get the water out of all the places it shouldn't be, and reveling in the sunlight beaming in from outside.

Meanwhile, in the control room, Weir is holding an impromptu meeting to get everyone up to speed.

"Alright," your name is RODNEY MCKAY, and you start things off with a chipper smile. "The last Zeero Point Module is depleted, but limited power has returned now that the Naquadah Generators aren't trying to hold back an ocean. Life support systems are working, but disabled for the moment to conserve power because, go figure, the Atmosphere is breathable, notwithstanding the inevitable allergens."

To punctuate your point, from down in the Gate room, Doctor Jackson sneezes.

Jade Jackson giggles at that, from her comfy seat next to Sheppard- Argo is lying across their laps. Enviable, those three. Oh so enviable.

"So can our Naquadah Generator Supply power the city shields now?" Weir asks.

"Not even close," Keiko reports. "I've had a little more luck with trying to convince Atlantis to accept alternate power sources now that the ZPMs are all drained, but... there are still hard coded limits I can't crack just yet. For the moment, we're shield-less."

"On the surface without a shield? We're target practice," Rose Lalonde remarks.

"Yes," you say, sarcasm dripping off your voice. "I'm well aware of that, Rose. Thank you for reminding the rest of us, though."

"When can you tell me where the Wraith took Colonel Sumner and the others?" Sheppard asks.

"Even with the six symbols Lieutenant Ford provided, there are still hundred of combinations-"

Sheppard interrupts you- "Seven-twenty."

You blink. "Yes. Right. I knew that. I'm just surprise you did."

"Take away the coordinates you can't get locks on, and that's our one," Sheppard says. "When we find it, send a MALP."

"Well... alright," you nod, and get to work on that.

"Sheppard, Jackson? May I have a word with you two?" Weir asks, and you watch Argo whine, reluctantly, and get up to go talk with Keiko about something.


 

Outside on the balcony, the three of you pause to take in the view of the city.

Your name is Jade Jackson, and you breathe it all in with your wolf-enhanced senses. The air has so much life to it, despite being just on the ocean. You can taste the distant aromas and scents of a landmass not too far away from how strong they still are.

It's...

It's all so NEW.

"This is about you not wanting us to go on the rescue mission, isn't it?" John starts, breaking the moment.

You glance at Weir, who's frowning now. "Major, we don't even know if they're alive still."

"Doctor, if there's one thing Jack O'neill taught me when I lived at his cabin for atleast half of my life," John says, "it's that we don't leave people in the hands of the enemy. And the fact that we are having this conversation in private tells me you know it's wrong and it could undermine your leadership." He pauses, then says, "And besides, this is why I'm here. Terezi had a vision and told Okurii that "Wraiths of the Past" would rise up and that me and my team would have to be here to help stop it. I thought she meant the NID or the Trust or something like that, but look at where we are right now. Actual. Goddamned. Wraiths. We need to rescue our people."

"Let's just say that you're right for a moment," Weir says. "What do we even know about the Wraith? One of the few things we DO know is that they are the enemy that defeated the Ancients. Now one of the problems we had when we first started to use Earth's stargate was that we got ourselves into serious trouble."

"Trouble that was Already There," you chime in.

Weir looks at you, "Pardon?"

"Maybe you missed one of the key pieces of the history lesson, Doctor Weir, but Khepri? Ra?? She was already meddling on Earth before the Stargate was found again. She had General West compromised with a Goa'uld Symbiote before my dad got the Gate even working again!" You tell her. "It was all going according to her plan until my dad and Uncle Jack turned the bomb she'd meant for Earth back around on her!"

"I read the history, Major Jackson," Weir begins, defensively. "I don't need a refresher."

"Look," John says. "They took our people. How are we supposed to react?"

"We're defenseless," Weir says. "No Shield, we're sitting ducks! How do you know going off on some half-assed rescue mission isn't going to bring them all right back here to our doorstep?"

"And How do we know leaving them there in enemy hands won't do the exact same thing?" John presses.

"...I..." Weir blinks. "What?"

"Maybe us rescuing Sumner and the others will bring them down on us," John says. "But leaving them in enemy hands DEFINITELY will!"

"He's right," you say. "Sumner and Bates know Atlantis' coordinates. If the Wraith remember the Ancients, they're going to remember this planet. The moment the Wraith find out Atlantis is back they're going to send ships here to attack us anyways. So we stop that before it happens."

"You bring up a good point," Weir says. "But we need more information. *I* need more information. Maybe we can negotiate with them?"

"If you seriously think that any people who send ships to kidnap people out of the villages, and burn it to the ground with laser fire, and use psychic tricks to make everyone see things that aren't really there-" John stops for breath. "We can't negotiate with them! They've been doing this for thousands and thousands of years. They're at the top of the food chain here. We were only there for a few hours before they showed up!"

"The Athosians mentioned Sumner examined the city ruins, despite being warned it would bring the Wraith," Weir says. "How do we know that we didn't bring this on ourselves there?"

"Maybe we did," John says.

"And that's the exact kind of snap decision that I'm worried about making," Weir says. "If we had just stuck it out... maybe-- Maybe then the city would have raised up on its own and we wouldn't be in this mess." She takes a steeling breath. "I see your points. Now, you see mine. I'm not authorizing a rescue mission until I know there's atleast a remote chance of success. We're not sending more good people to their deaths, am I clear?"

"Crystal," John nods.

"As the ocean air," you nod as well.


 

Your name is TEYLA EMMAGAN, and you awaken in what you can only guess is a Wraith Holding Cell because your internal senses for Wraith Attacks are going off inside your head like Dart's whining, keening engine.

"Welcome back," Toran says, helping raise you from the floor.

"Thank you..." you frown. "Are we in a Wraith Hive?"

"Yes," Halling nods.

"Any idea what to expect?"

Ah, and there, on the other side of the cell, is the Colonel Sumner, and his lackey, Bates.

"No," you say. "Very few have been taken by the Wraith and lived to tell the tale."

"Your friend here was the one who said the Wraith would come if we went into the ruins."

"You should have heeded our warning then," you say to him.

"How do I know he's not the one who told them?" Sumner asks.

You laugh. Oh, it's a sad, pitiful laugh. But oh, does his question bring up just the tiniest bit of humor to your mind.

"I don't see what's so funny about that," Bates says, coldly.

"The Wraith do not need spies to inform them," you say. "They have other means of leaving a place observed. Some in this galaxy would call it Magic; Others, Technology."

"Like Psychic powers or something?" Sumner inquires.

"...Or motion sensors," Bates says, blinking in realization.

"Any option you can think of may very well be the case," Halling says- and then, you all hear footsteps. "Someone comes."

Everyone backs into the far wall of the cell door as a Wraith and two masked Warrior Guards approach, halting outside the cell door.

The leader of the trio is a man with pale skin in a sickly, greenish hue. They all feature white hair, and though two of them have their faces covered in masks, you can still feel their piercing gazes upon your skin.

So, these are Wraith in their natural habitat. They're somehow more at ease in their home than they are out in the fields.

The man snarls, and the cell doors slide open.

Sumner, the idiot, steps forwards, "I'm Colonel Marshall Sum-"

He doesn't get far, because the main Wraith backhands him into the far wall.

The Wraith's eyes lock on Toran, and one of the guards enters, grabs him by the throat, and drags him off, kicking and screaming.

"NO!" you yell. "Take me in his place!!"

"T-Take me..." Sumner grunts. "I'm the leader..."

The Wraith care not, as all three leave with their chosen target, and the cell doors lock behind them.

"...They have no need to explain themselves," you say with a sigh.

"Yeah... kinda figured that part out..." Sumner grunts.


 

Your name is still Rodney Mckay as it was earlier...

"Well, there goes that MALP," you commiserate as you watch the MALP's telemitry report back a flopping, twisting, spiraling view of a Space-born Stargate.

"Spacegate," Sheppard says. "Makes sense."

"It's in high orbit around a planet on the far side of the galaxy," Keiko reports from the data feed. "Damn. I guess that makes a bit more sense what they originally used the Castle Jumpers for."

"Are you sure this is the right address?" Weir asks.

"It's the only one we could get a lock on," you report.

Weir sighs, "Damn it. Shut it down." She looks to Sheppard, and says, "I'm sorry. But we're going to have to prepare for the worst." And with that, she leaves.

For a few moments, you continue to stare at the spiraling feed from the MALP before the distance grows too large and the connection cuts to static. You shut down the wormhole, even as Keiko muses aloud, "John, Rodney, come with me. I gotta show you something."

You follow her up the stairs, and into a large holding bay of---

"Oh my god, they're Gateships!" You stare at them.

"Castle Jumpers," Keiko corrects.

"No," Sheppard corrects. "They're Puddle Jumpers."

"...What?" You turn to look at him. "No! Come On, I said it first this time! That means I get to name it!"

"No you didn't," Sheppard smirks at you. "I read the mission report from when you guys rescued SG-10. They're Puddle Jumpers."

"Gateships," you counter.

"Puddle Jumpers," he counters again.

"Whatever we call them!" Keiko interjects. "I need to see if John can fly these as easily as he made a starmap from scratch."

"Can't you fly them?" You ask. "You have ships like these back on Aincrad, right?"

"Well, yeah," Keiko says. "But there's no guarantee that these'll handle the exact same way that mine do." She pauses, "And besides, I never got my license, officially."

"We're in a whole other Galaxy," Sheppard says. "Who's gonna know?"

Keiko pauses to consider that, then shakes her head and says, "Anyways, up for taking one of these things for a test-drive?"



Your name is Elizabeth Weir, and you've had one hell of a day so far.

And, alas, it's not done yet.

You arrive in what's rapidly becoming the Infirmary for Atlantis, finding Doctor Beckett examing the hand that Major Sheppard shot up.

"Doctor Beckett," you greet. "You wanted to show me something?"

Beckett nods, and motions at the hand. "The cells in this hand have none of the normal human inhibiting proteins whatsoever. That gives these creatures an incredible ability to regenerate."

"What about the movement Major Sheppard saw?" You ask.

"As far as independent behavior," Beckett smiles reassuringly. "I'd say that whatever he saw was caused by a residual command left in the severed nerve endings. Like how chickens can run around with their heads cut off for a time."

"Riiight," you nod, grimly. "Anything else?"

"Well... if I was a betting man, and I'm not, but if I were... I'd say the being this arm belonged to was old. Very, very old." He anwers.

"How old?" You ask.

Beckett turns the hand over, revealing a small, mouth like shape on the inside of the palm. "I'd say as long as the cells were properly nourished, I don't see a creature like this ever dying from natural causes, and they'd be bloody hard to kill."

"We've circumvented incredible regeneration before with Armor piercing rounds and Zats," you say. "...Even so, I don't like the sound of that."

"I don't blame you," Beckett says. "'Cause neither do I."

And then your radio buzzes. "Mckay to Weir. Could you meet us in the bay above the Gate Room?"

"On my way," you radio back, and head that way, thoughts a whirlwind as you consider this.

It's no wonder the Ancients got their asses kicked to the curb to the point of fleeing the Galaxy. Incredible regeneration, plus the reported 'feeding' of their 'culled herds' and... Well... To be frank, you're trying hard not to think about how the hell they reproduce.

Your thoughts are interrupted as you hear a humming sort of sound upon entering the Spaceship bay.

Mckay is standing there, smirking, hands in his pockets.

"What's that noise?" You ask.

"Why don't you ask Major Sheppard?" He asks in turn as-

There's a shimmering sound, and an accompanying visual, and there, hovering above the entire room, is one of the round ships- side flaps extended into some sort of flying configuration.

Well now. There's a sight to see. Sitting behind the front window are John Sheppard and Keiko Ayano.

"Did someone order a tactical advantage?" Sheppard asks over the radio.

You stare up at it. "Alright," you smile, "so you can fly it. Doesn't mean you can pull off a rescue."

"Doctor Weir," Sheppard says with a very patient sounding voice. "Even if Okurii didn't want me going to represent Alternia... this is why you would have brought me anyways."

You blink, considering that....

"Alright then," you say. "Major Sheppard, assemble your team."

"Thank you, Ma'am."


 

Your name is John Sheppard, and you feel tense as the Jumper is loaded up with your team. Jade, Smitty, and Ford, because he still has a GDO from before and his is one of the only codes presently programmed into the thing.

O'neill and Carter volunteered for it too, but you had them go with Keiko to see if either of them could fly a Jumper as well. Actually, you think you heard Keiko say something about checking the piloting abilities of everyone on the Expedition.

You're not sure how you got the gene to use this Ancient tech, considering your origin, but you're not too worked up over it for the moment.

"Alright!" Ford tries to take the co-pilot's seat next to you,  "Gateship One is ready to go!"

"Gateship One?" You quote back at him. "We're not calling it that."

"It's a ship that goes through the 'gate, Gateship One," Ford explains his logic.

"Let me guess, Mckay thought it was cool?" You ask.

"Well, yeah," he nods.

"Oh, well, in that case, One: you don't get to name anything, ever, and two," you motion for him to get out of the seat. "That's Jade's seat."

"What? Why?" Ford asks. "She's got the whole cabin to sit in!"

"And so do you!" Jade says as she leans over his shoulder, and bares some wolfish fangs. "My seat. Out."

"Fine," Ford moves one row back and lets Jade take the co-pilot's seat.

You and her share a smile, then you radio, "Flight, this is Puddle Jumper One, ready to launch."

"This is Flight, I thought we were going with Gateship," Mckay protests.

"Negative, Flight," you say.

"But it's a ship that goes through the Gate! It makes perfect sense to-" Mckay protests trail off suddenly. You imagine that Weir is glaring at him for a bit of amusement. "...Okay, Fine. Puddle Jumper. You are cleared to launch."

You look to Jade, and say, "Dial it up, Major."

"By your command, Major!" And with that, Jade starts hammering down the glyphs on the DHD built into the console.

You hear a muffled KAWOOSH, and then you lower the Jumper down through the opening iris port in the floor/ceiling, and enter the Gate Room, with the Gate already active.

You take a breath, line it all up, make sure the side pods are closed and---

WOOOSH!

You transition through the Gate in a heartbeat. All you see is stars and a planet.

"Well, this is cool," you say, taking the ship around through its paces now that you have the room for it.

"Looks like you've got the hang of it," Ford says.

"Yeah, it's pretty responsive," you say. "Almost like it's reading my mind." Now... where to go from here?

A heads up display appears suddenly on the screen, showing you the coordinates on the planet below that the Jumper thinks you should be heading to.

"Did you do that?" Jade asks.

"Yeah," you say. "I just wondered where we go from here and there it was."

"Right," Jade says, narrowing her eyes. "So how do we find them once we land? It's not like there'll be much in the way of a Breeze inside of where-ever everyone's being held."

That is a good question- and as soon as you process the whole thing, a side panel next to you spits out a device.

"Well, that's handy," you say, taking the device and putting it in your pocket. "Now I'm thinking about a nice turkey sandwich."

....Nothing happens.

"Worth a try," Smitty pipes in from the back half of the Jumper.

A few moments later, you've entered the atmosphere. A few minutes later, you've cloaked the Jumper and then brought it down to a stop in the woods just outside the massive, tree covered mountain that the Jumper says is the Wraith Facility.

"Alright," you say, once it's parked. "Jade, with me. Ford, Smitty, hold down the Jumper. Lay down defenses, and be ready to light this place up if we have to. Two clicks, and you're clear to talk on the radio. Got it?"

A pair of Yes Sir's from the two men, and you and Jade head out into the forest, using the Breeze to mask your scents from the air.



Colonel Sumner is lead into a large room with a long table with food on it in the center of it all.

Sumner frowns as he sees the skeletal remains of Toran sitting on a chair, and then takes stock of the room. The ceiling above is dark, but reflecting even segments in some flickering light. Almost like a honeycomb of sorts...

As Sumner looks around, a female Wraith enters the room silently, staying behind and out of sight at all times. Her red hair flows dramatically behind her as she moves, and her skin, a rich, deep blue, nearly blends in with the walls and floors. Only her dress, a strapless, light blue, very sheer sort fabric sort of thing, would make her stand out against it in contrast.

She steps up behind Sumner, and waits for him to turn around.

When he does, Sumner restrains a jump... but just barely. His heart races as he feels fear that he reasonably shouldn't be feeling.

"You must feel hunger by now," the Wraith Queen says, whispering her voice both aloud and into his mind.

"N...Not really," Sumner lies.

"Lies," The queen snarls at him, calling him out on it.


 

A Wraith Warrior stalks through a hallway. Behind him, you and Jade continue to progress unnoticed.

"And here I thought getting in would be the hard part," Jade says, even as she sets a block of C-4 on a pillar. "That's the first one we've seen."

"The moving dot is him," you say, checking the scanner device both against the Wraith's movement, and your own senses with the Breeze. Jade was right, the air flow is rather limited in here. You can't stir up much movement in it, almost like when you're on a spaceship. "Step a bit behind me to the left?"

Jade does so, and one of the dots mirrors it.

"Yeah, that's you, then the one in the center is me."

"Lifesigns detector, Cool," Jade grins.

"We'll name it later," You check the angle of the screen, tilt it a bit, annnd...

Ah, yes, there's a good cluster of dots all bundled together.

"This way," you guide Jade along, and soon you feel through the Breeze a cell with people in it. It enters visual range shortly there after.

"Major Sheppard??" Teyla asks, peering out through the cell.

"Sssh," you motion for whispering. "Are you guys alright?"

"How did you find us?" Teyla asks.

"Is my son alive?" Halling asks.

"Long story, and yes," you answer, peering into the cell. "Where's Colonel Sumner?"

"He was taken by the Wraith," Bates answers.

"How long ago?" You ask.

"Not long," Teyla says. "Maybe a few minutes."

"Lovely," you say. "Just what I was afraid of."

You turn to Jade, and she nods, "I'll cut the cell door down, if you think Ford can get us a distraction?"

You tab the radio twice, wait, and get a response, "This is Ford."

"Ford, Sheppard. Jade needs you to make some noise," you say. "Oh her signal."

"Yes sir!"

You look to the people in the cell, "Get to the back of the Cell, wait for Jade to blow it, and then get to the Jumper. I'll find the Colonel. If I'm not back in twenty minutes... well..."

"Something went wrong and I should go Nuclear Shotgun on the place?" Jade asks.

"Yeah," you nod.

"Got it," Jade nods.

With that, you take off at a run for the only other set of dots on the detector.

"What is a 'nuclear shotgun'?" You hear Teyla ask.

"Oh, a larger scale version of what I'm about to do with these marbles, actually," Jade answers, before starting to explain excitedly about orbital structures and rapid fire molecular compression. You can only imagine the looks on everyone's faces.


 

"What do you call yourself...?" The Queen inquires to Sumner.

"Colonel Marshall Sumner, United States Marine Corps," he answers.

"Hmm. So little fear. Is it valor, or ignorance, i wonder?" The Queen muses.

"We travel through the Stargate as Peaceful Explorers," Sumner answers.

"Hrrrn, more lies. They smell awful on your breath. Tell me the TRUTH." The Queen INSISTS.

Sumner stumbles over his words, grimacing, and then spits out, "I work for the Trust. I was hired to secure... Technology In this Gaaaalaxy to... Gaah..." He struggles to not say it.

["TELL ME."]

"To-To- TO USE FOR OUR OWN WILL!" Sumner gasps as the Queen releases her psychic grip. "Wh... what was that...?"

"You must feel hungry. You should eat, and yet you resist your hunger," the Queen says. "You resist admirably, but you will not be able to survive for long unless you Eat."

"Wh... No. What are you doing to our people??" Sumner asks.

"You trespassed on our Feeding Grounds," The Queen informs him. "All things must eat, in that, I am sure we are similar."

Suddenly gaining an inkling of an idea, Sumner glances at the skeleton, "Looks like the Food didn't agree with him..."

"Oh, in that we differ..." The Queen smirks. "We do not need our food to agree with us."

Understanding dawning, Sumner's eyes widen as the Queen approaches him. "What do you call your World?"

Sumner resists, or tries to, even as the Queen's Psychic questioning presses into his mind.

["What Do You Call Your World?"]

"Nrrrrrr----EARTH," Sumner answers.

"Hmm, it is not among our stars," The Queen deduces.

"N...NNO." Sumner answers.

"Tell me of Earth. How many of your kind are there?" The Queen inquires. "Thousands? Millions...?" Her eyes widen as Sumner struggles to resist. "More!"

Sumner gasps as she releases him again.

"Our feeding ground has not been so rich in ten thousand years," The Queen grins. "I must admit, your will is strong... This one..." She gestures at Toran's body... "He Begged for his life."

"Is that the kind of tr...treatment I can expect for my people?" He asks.

"You say your people as if the ones in the cells are yours," The Queen muses. "Amusing, but I can sense the duplicity in your mind. You mean the people you work for. The ones who were too cowardly to not send more to explore."

"Th-Then we're done talking," Sumner tries, rebellious.

"I think not." The Queen then orders: ["KNEEL."]

Sumner kneels, against his will, and the Queen rips open his shirt.

"I have no tasted such strength in SO. LONG." The Queen grins.

"G...Go to hell!" Sumner grunts out.

"Of course... but first..." The Queen snarls, "First will go your delusions of protecting your home!"

And then she shoves her hand onto his chest, and he SCREAMS.

Rapidly, Sumner's body begins aging.

"How many years must I take from you before you tell us what I wish to know?" The queen inquires, relishing as she absorbs the mans vitality and energy. "Or Shall I Take Them All??"

"NNNNAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!"

["WHERE. IS. THIS. NEW. FEEDING. GROUND?"]

"NOOOO!" Sumner yells. "I WONNNAAAAHHHHRGHHHH..."

"TELL ME!" She roars. "TELL ME WHERE!!!"

Year after year, Sumner ages, and ages, and ages, his body growing frailer and frailer and weaker and weaker.

"MII-NR-"

"TELL ME!"

"MIL..-"

"YES! TELL MEEEE!"

"MAJOR SHEPPARD!!" Sumner yells out finally.

"What?" The Queen falters, and in that moment, the rapid fire shots of a P-90 echo out through the chamber- slamming into the Queen's guards, the Queen herself, and straight into Sumner's chest.

The Queen yells out, recoiling from the man as his life is taken out from under her. She turns around, glaring up into the rafters where one Major John Sheppard leaps down, aiming his P-90 at her and firing.

Shot after shot after shot riddles the Queen's body, and she snarls as each shot heals over and over and over-

And then, seemingly with only a triple click of his radio as a cue, John decaptchalogues a mother fucking sledge hammer at least three times as tall as he is into his hands, replacing the P-90, and swings it around so hard and so fast the Wraith Queen just fucking doesn't see it coming at all until seconds after her body hits the floor half a room over.

A Wraith Guard enters the room- only to be knocked to the fucking floor as explosions rocket the hive's exterior, and a moment later before it can react, John brings the hammer down on its helmeted head, and claims the rifle like weapon for himself even as the Queen gets to her feet and yells a very shrill cry- rage echoes through the room.



Circumstantially Simultaneous to the explosion, Jade funneled her powers through her bag of marbles, and utterly ripped the cell door off of the wall with a burst of green energy.

"...C'mon!" Jade barks, "Let's go! John gave us an order!"



John considers his options for a moment, and then takes the pointy end of the rifle he'd stolen from the Wraith and hurls it with a Breeze enhanced throw straight into the Wraith Queen's chest and stomach.

It goes clean through to the other side- embedding itself clear into the far wall- and the Wraith Queen collapses to the ground.

"That HAS to kill you," he growls, glaring at the Queen.

"You-" The queen rasps, barely able to get the oxygen into her lungs to speak. "You don't know what you have done... we were... just the caretakers... who slumber..." she gasps for air she can't get. "They will... awaken... All Of Them..."

And then she expires from this mortal coil as alarms ring out through the room.

Above him, lights shine from the Honeycomb lattice work, and John looks up.

"...Well, fuck."

Each comb shape contains a humanoid figure, stretching, unfurling...

Awakening.

He checks the life signs detector, and sees SO MANY LIGHTS appearing on the screen.

John tabs his radio twice as he takes off for a run, "Jade! Scrap that twenty minutes thing!!"




"Where's Colonel Sumner?" Jade asks into the radio as she leads the survivors out of the Hive.

"Wraith was torturing him for intel. Had to kill him before he spilled where Earth was," John answers, and Jade grimaces at the news.

"Well, what about the Wraith??" She asks.

"A Redhead is dead, two guards dead.... a whole bunch of ceiling crawlers waking up," John answers.

Jade grimaces. "Joooohn! What did you do??"

"I think I woke the hive??"

"Great! Lovely! Make the escape harder, why don't we?" Jade laughs. "BRING IT, WRAITH!!"


 

Your name is Argo Lalonde, and your feet tap nervously as you wait at the Control Room's overlook, watching the Stargate idle, unused.

"So, there's a lot of interesting stuff being discovered even with limited power to certain sections," Rose begins, joining you at the overlook, and handing you a coffee mug full of something sweet smelling.

You take a sniff, and a hesitant taste... Eh, it's alright, you suppose, for MRE hot chocolate.

"Breaking out the Hot Chocolate already?" You ask, tiredly.

"I felt it was appropriate considering the situation," Rose says. "And with John and Jade out there bringing our people back, it's... well. I can understand your nervousness, among other reasons."

You sigh. "I'm scared they're not going to make it back."

"They will," Rose says. "John and Jade especially have so much to come back to." She grabs your hand, and squeezes it tight. "Did you find out yet?"

"...I..." You breathe out, then nod. "Yeah. Took a test just before we gated through to Atlantis, just to be sure... Yesterday morning." You shake your head and laugh, nervously. "It doesn't feel like it was yesterday, but it was."

"And?" Rose asks.

"If we can make it to September..." You're about to say more when Weir walks by.

"What about September?" She asks.

"Nothing," You smile at her. "Just... Thinking about how great it'd be if we made it to September in one piece."

"Agreed," Weir nods. "September sounds like a good month to live to, doesn't it?" She stares at the Gate, and says, "Do you think I should have made them stay?"

"No," Rose squeezes your hand tight as she says that. "I think you made the right call."

"They just need time," you say.

"Time..." Weir shakes her head. "We're already on so much borrowed time as it is. I have to wonder when it runs out?" And then she meanders off.

"We're going to have to tell people eventually," Rose says.

"When it gets obvious," you say, delaying the inevitable.


 

"Get into the Jumper!" You are once again John Sheppard, and you ready your P-90 as everyone ferries into the Jumper. The sound of the Wraith Darts buzz in the background, getting closer and closer. Once everyone is inside, and settling down, you and Jade take the front most seats, and you focus the ship to life. "Okay, Jumper... what am I thinking now?"

The ship takes off.

You smirk a little, then glance back into the rear of the Jumper, "Everyone okay back there?"

"We are well enough," Teyla says, taking the seat directly behind you.

"Hope that was the hard part," Ford says, sitting behid Jade.

"Yeah, I don't think we've gotten to the Hard part yet," jade says as you clear into orbit and begin approaching the Gate. It's surrounded by more of the Dart shaped ships.

"What can we do?" Teyla asks.

"Well, we're safe as long as they can't see us," Ford says.

"They don't have to," you frown. "They're covering the only exit. The minute we dial the gate, they'll start shooting blind."

"Then how can we get through?" Ford asks.

"Easy," Jade says with a smile, reaching out with her hands towards the space outside. "We draw them away from the Gate then double back."

And then she Grabs onto one of the Darts as you drive past into her telekenetic grip, and drags it along behind you, using it as a shield as a bunch of the other Darts break formation and chase after you.

"Ford, Dial the Gate on my Mark," you say, and Ford reaches over to the DHD, preparing.

The Darts start firing at you- their shots going wide, seemingly trying to avoid hitting their fellow Wraith.

"Anyone see anything like a weapon's console anywhere?" You ask.

The Jumper seems to respond to your request, because you feel the cloak disengaging while hearing something shift in the exterior-rear of the jumper, and there's a FWHUMP.

A golden squid barely gets seen as it shoots ahead of you, then doubles back around behind you.

Then, a targeting screen pops up on the windshield, showing a Dart getting destroyed.

"That works," you say, and fire off a few more drones as you loop around and head back for the Gate. "Ford, Dial Out. Jade, get ready to grab anybody who's still following us and crash them into the other darts still guarding the Gate."

Ford starts punching the glyphs for Atlantis, and Jade does just that, grabbing as many of the ships behind you as she can in her grasp, and flinging them straight at the remaining ships that didn't break their guard pattern.

The explosions are brilliantly timed to the Spacegate activating.

As you dash past it, you notice something odd, though.

The Spacegate only has Eight Chevrons.

You file it away from later as you prepare for another loop around. "Ford, send the IDC on the next pass."

"What's the range on these things anyways?" Ford asks, seemingly to himself.



The Gate Alarms go off as the Stargate dials in.

Your name is Rose Lalonde, and you quickly drag Argo away from the immediate line of sight of the Gate itself even as the unstable vortex crashes against the shield.

"Do we have an Identification Code?" Weir asks.

"Nothing yet!" Mckay reports after checking a laptop.



The Jumper dodges and weaves the fire coming from the last few Darts, wisely staying out of Jade's grabbing range, frustratingly enough.

"Enter the code!" You order. "EVERYONE HANG ON!"




"Wait! Reading Ford's IDC!" Mckay yells out.

"Lower Shield!" Weir orders, and the shield goes down.

A blue burst of energy slips through the wormhole and crashes into a wall, forcing people who hadn't yet gotten out of the Gate room to dodge out of the way. Suddenly, you feel a bit better about dragging Argo away just a moment ago. Even so...

"Raise the shield as soon as the Jumper comes through!" You order.

"Obviously!!" Mckay snaps in return.



"We're going too fast!" Ford yells. "We're going TOO FAST!"

"I know!" You narrow your eyes, and close in the Jumper's side pods just before-

SCHLORP!

You throw the brakes and grind to a halt before you crash into the wall.



You watch as the shield raises, and three bright flashes of light follow it moments there after. And then, the Gate shuts down.

"Holy shit..." You crack a grin, "like bugs on a windshield!"

Argo laughs in nervous relief as John radios through from the Jumper, "Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to Atlantis. Please remain seated 'til the Puddle Jumper has come to a full and complete stop."

You catch a glimpse of John and Jade in the windshield as the Jumper raises up towards the ceiling, and you give your brother a bright grin and a thumbs up. He returns it with a smile and a nod.


 

Your name is Teyla Emmagan, and you can't believe it.

Atlantis.

The city of the Ancestors.

Your new home.

There's a party going on to celebrate now, out on the balconies, and you can't help but keep your eyes on your saviours.

John Sheppard and Jade Jackson, plus one other- a girl with crow wings and cat ears that glow like the sun. How such a thing is possible, you aren't sure. Maybe an alien from another world? Possible. There are certainly a lot of other strange species here besides the humans you're mostly familiar with. Grey skinned beings with orange striped horns, and virbrant eye colors.

"John! Whoo! Congrats on the rescue mission!" one of such said aliens, one with crimson rust shaded eyes, and curled ram horns, approaches.

"Thanks, Aradia," is the reply. "Enjoying the city so far?"

"Hell yes! It's the archaeological find of the century!" the girl grins, and then spots- "Kanaya!!" She gives a hug to the girl who you'd previously seen as a human girl, now with similarly grey skin and horns.

Another girl with glowing, Feline features stands hand and hand with miss Maryam.

What strange people, these people who have come to Atlantis from another world.

"Majors," and then comes the leader of this place, Elizabeth Weir, holding a few mugs in hand. "I thought this occasion merited opening this. Compliments of General O'neill."

"The champagne?" John asks.

"Yup," she nods, offering some of the mugs to them.

"Sorry, uh..." Jade shakes her head. "We're not touching that stuff after all the trouble Roxy went through."

"Ah, right. Fair enough, I suppose," Weir nods, and then quickly hands off all but one of the mugs to the first person who passes by, which just so happens to be another of the grey-skinned people, already carrying around her own coffee mug.

"Gee, thanks Weir," she says, before heading over to a group of some other people. "HEY! Got some O'neill approved Champagne here!!"

"Nice Score, Tyz!" one of the other grey skinned aliens chimes in.

"Either way," Weir raises her mug, drawing your attention back to this conversation. "I think a congratulations are in order, everything considered."

John grimaces. "Wouldn't be so sure about that."

"There was no way you could have saved Colonel Sumner, John," she says. "And the way your camera shows it, he basically ordered you on the spot to do it."

"I still have to live with it," John says.

Weir takes a sip of her drink, and nods. "Don't we all."

"I'm beginning to think you were right," John says. "I might have made things much worse. I don't think I made us many friends out there tonight."

"C'mon, John!" The crow winged girl says, "Look around us!"

You do so. You see everyone together, celebrating. Your eyes pause on Halling bowing his head to Jinto in the common Athosian sign of affection.

You decide this is the time to interject yourself into the conversation.

"I agree, Major Sheppard," you say. "You've earned both my friendship and that of my people. With our help, I'm sure you will make many more new friends."

"See?" Jade nudges John in the arm with her elbow. "Argo and Teyla are right, and I'm saying it too. We did good out there. Sure, we stirred up some trouble, but isn't that what Terezi said we were going to do?"

"I... Yeah," he nods.

"Of course we're right," the girl, Argo you guess is her name, says.

"Oh, one more thing, John," Weir says. "I'd like you to sleep on it, as I have a few thoughts on it myself."

"Thoughts about what?" John asks.

"Who the members of your team might be," she says. "Provisional name, Atlantis Recon One, or AR-1 for short."

"My team?" he blinks. "I mean, I would have thought O'neill or Carter would get a team before me."

"Well, you're one of the ranking Military officers right now," Weir says, "And, well, O'neill and Carter aren't exactly here as representatives of Earth or Alternia, so... Yes. You."

"I... well..." John blinks. "Yeah, I'll think on it."

"Good," Weir says. "We need to get back out there, do what we need to do to survive, and finish what we started."

"You realize that could get us into all sorts of trouble, right?" Jade asks.

"Some would argue that's entirely the point," Wier gives a coy smile, before heading off.

You stay there and join John, Jade, and Argo as they turn to stare out over the city and the ocean. It's quite the view.

"Well..." John says. "I guess we'll just have to make a whole lot of friends, then."

As if part of an injoke you're missing context of, Argo and Jade chime in with a chorused, "Indeed!"

Chapter Text

TO: Dr. Elizabeth Weir

FROM: Gen. Okuri Leijon

Greetings from the Alternia Galaxy, Doctor Weir.

If you're reading this message, then you've no doubt arrived and settled down in Atlants and have finally gotten to sorting through the first of the emails I, and others like me, have sent along with you to hopefully prepare you for the role of command of an entire group of people whose lives now hang in the balance. No Pressure!

I was in your shoes once. I gave a fancy speech and suddenly everyone decided I was the person to lead them all. I had a whole lot more on my shoulders than just one expedition team- tiny in comparison of sheer numbers and yet arguably yours is the more important group to keep an eye on. There will no doubt be threats and enemies out there who can't be disarmed with diplomacy, so... what I hope my series of Emails here will do is help walk you through potential situations, and give you a perspective that's different from that of Earth's.

I'm sorry if this is coming off as pretentious in any way shape or form, but I feel that some of this needs to be said right off the bat. You will be in command of my people. As with many of the people from Earth, we are entrusting you to our people. I can't speak for how those members of your team expect things to be run, or how they'll take to having all of the decisions you'll have to make being made, but...

For the people I'm sending under the banner of Alternia, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. We're used to a certain measure of free will and disrespect for authority. That happens when you're forming a government out of the ashes of literally disposing an Empire of its figurehead and all the stigmas associated with it. That's not to say they're disrespecting you, however, be advised that most people- John, Jade, Argo, and Rose especially- are wary of authority in general excising control over them.

If they feel you're standing in the way of something they feel is necessary to continue on with day to day life, they may just go ahead and do it anyways. Hell, they may even do that if they can't reach you at all. Don't make yourself out to be the enemy. You'll have plenty of others to deal with, trust me on that.

Speaking of the Trust... my people have been given orders to keep an eye out for any Trust activities. People you may have personally vetted may have been compromised in the interim time. If such a thing is to happen... needless to say, we all do not want more of Kinsey's type interfering with already delicate events. If you feel there are any such un-Trust-worthy activities going about, my people are there and they can, ironically, be trusted to help you out.

When it comes to decisions of life and death, you're going to have to learn to deal with snap decisions. Sometimes, the right decision doesn't always surface immediately, or ever. You have to make the best choice out of a hand of equally bad choices. Consequences will happen no matter how perfectly you tailor your plans, Doctor Weir. It's best to accept that early and move on.

Finally, do not wait too long when dealing command decisions. People may find you to be weak willed if you're faltering too long. Take in as many opinions as you can from everyone that you can, too. Because they may have opinions and insight that you might be missing when observing events.

I have so much more I wish to talk to you about, but I think it's best that I end this missive here and break it up into other messages.

Best wishes,

_General Okurii Leijon

Chapter Text

EARTH DATE: MARCH 11TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/18/0004.

"So... nothing from Atlantis yet?" Your name is Jonas Quinn, and you feel like the universe is taunting you as you pack up your stuff from the room at the SGC you've been staying in to prep for moving to your new apartment.

You're moving out of the SGC to the surface, finally. Teal'c, apparently, had been offered the same, but given some recent rising tensions among the Goa'uld System Lords and the Rebel Jaffa, he'd turned down the opportunity.

"Unforutnately, no," Colonel Carter says with a sigh, leafing through one of your history books to ascertain the contents before putting it in a box. "The best we can figure is they haven't been able to get the Gate powered for a return dial yet."

"And we're waiting til... the 15th to contact them?" You ask.

"That's the plan," Carter nods.

"Still seems odd they haven't contacted us," you frown, checking one of your journals to see what box it goes in. "You'd think with the ZPMs they took with them..." you frown. "Unless they can't use them, I suppose."

"You did drag us half way across the Galaxy for a local ZPM rather than use one we could get from Aincrad or Alfheim," Jolinar muses. "It's possible that Atlantis doesn't like ZPMs foreign to this dimension."

"Maybe," you muse.



EARTH DATE: MARCH 12TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/19/0004.

Your new apartment is situated out around a park. It's nice here and the people are nice and the air is clean and crisp and...

And nobody even bats an eye at your presence desipte your face having been on TV in recent months as being one of THE KEY PEOPLE that helped save Earth from Anubis.

Honestly,it's probably due to the fact that Colonel Carter and General O'neill have been taking most of center stage in the public's eye right now. There's a lot of focus on them given that they're respectively leading SG-1 and the SGC and that their "Cousins" who "Work as Ambassadors with the Tok'ra" went to Atlantis.

And there's a thing, isn't it?

The whole cloning debacle with Loki had been swept under the rug pretty much for the public eye. Oh sure, anyone with half a brain and could pick apart legalese and sort through ten hours worth of paperwork could figure it out, but most people weren't that calculated.

Apparently one of the Trolls who went to Atlantis, Tagora Gorjek, had a hand in crafting that bit of subterfuge.

A part of you wishes you could have gone with them, another part is glad you ended up  staying behind. The latter feeling arises from the fact that Major Mitchel is helping you move in, and brought along a large bag full of cookies.

"They're for the whole house-warming thing," he explained. "And also to snack on while we move stuff because lets be honest here, moving boxes is hard work and we'll need all the sugar we can get."

It took you two days to get everything moved in.



EARTH DATE: MARCH 14TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/21/0004.

The Replicators have taken over the territory of a minor Goa'uld System Lord you'd never heard the name of before, he was so minor. The news sends shockwaves through the Galactic Scene, however, because said Goa'uld had been so minor that he'd figured nobody would come after him or his territory.

Well, it seemed the Replicators didn't care about that, and went after him for the one reason nobody ever expected.

The newly taken territory was, according to Mitchel, "Smack Dab in the middle of two larger territories that belonged to some other Goa'uld System Lords who were much bigger fish."

Namely, the Goa'uld in question had taken action against the Replicators, and were getting their asses kicked. Slowly, piece by piece, ship by ship, planet by planet, the Replicators were spreading out into those two larger pieces of territory.

They were being remarkably restrained given the amount of ships that the Goa'uld were throwing their way.

"The bugs should be spreading faster than this," Carter griped at the meeting. "I don't understand why they're not."

Those thoughts heavy in mind, you went back to your new apartment, and met one of your neighbors... arguing with her boyfriend in the hallway your apartment is in.

"I don't ever want to see you around here again, Doug!!" being one of the things she yells at him, while throwing a suitcase full of hastily packed clothes at him.

"Wh- Krista! COME ON!" The man, 'Doug',  yells back at her, catching the suitcase. "I swear, I'll do better this time!!"

"I'm changing the locks," 'Krista' informs him. "And if you convince Misses Connors to let you in, I'm calling the cops, you bastard!" And then she storms off into her apartment, slamming the door behind her. A moment later, you hear several locks clicking in rapid succession.

The man, Doug, turns and glares at you, "What're you lookin' at?"

"You're in front of my door," you tell him.

"...Right, whatever," and thus Doug leaves, angry at quite a lot of things.



EARTH DATE: MARCH 15TH, 2001.

DIASPORA DATE: 09/22/0004.

The whirling sounds of chevrons locking and the gate spinning meet your wars as you descend into the control room.

"Jonas," General O'neill nods to you.

"General," you nod in return. "Dialing Atlantis?"

"That's the hope," O'neill nods.

Chevrons lock, and then...

"Chevron Eight...."

Nothing happens.

"Will not lock," Walter reports.

"...Well," O'neill says. "That was anti climatic."

"I wonder why it didn't connect?" you ask.



Meanwhile, the gate room in the City of Atlantis was flooded with a cloud of darkness that was rapidly making its way for the active Stargate.



You head home late that night, and are just about at the park outside of your apartment complex's ground level doors when the sound of a gunshot goes off.

About five minutes later, the police and an ambulance show up and your neighbor is escorted out by officers, not handcuffed, but clearly distraught from the mumbling she was doing.

Following them is a pair of medics pushing a crash cart with a tarped over body lying on it.

Later that night, you'd hear from the land lord that the boyfriend, Doug, had came at Krista with a gun. A tussle ensued. She'd just wrangled it away from pointing at her when he fired the thing... right into his own gut.

You decided that maybe this apartment complex just wasn't the right place for you to live, especially alone, and headed back to the SGC.

Chapter Text

Your name is Keiko Ayano, and in the mad scramble to find livable living space wtihin Atlantis' residential areas, you're not sure if you've screwed up or won the jackpot. Somehow, you managed to grab one of the few rooms that didn't have its own inbuilt bath or shower, but in exchange, was just down the hallway from a POOL and a communal shower area.

The irony is not lost on you. A City on the Ocean, and it has its own POOL.

You have your theories as to why it exists, but you're not going to dwell on them.

...One of the real reasons you're considering this a screw up is because inorder to shower, you'll have to head down to the freaking pool, which might just be the last thing you want after a long day's mission, or early in the morning...

On the jackpot side of things, one of the other people to grab a room in this area is a really hot guy.

Oh, sure, Mallek Adalov is Alternian and you're not quite sure where you fall exactly on the 'date an alien' thing just yet, but you are defiinitely leaning towards the 'I could date 'em' side of the romance coin because. Wow.

Not a single day has passed and hoo. Boy. You've already ran into Mallek once in nothing but his swimming trunks and DAMN.

Just.

DAMN.

For all of his sword training, your sister's boyfriend has nothing on the MUSCLE Mallek has. What the hell did he say his area of expertise was again? Coding? Hacking? He must lift weights in his spare time or something.

So. Yeah.

Mallek's abs are a thing. So are the piercings. So many piercings. He'd caught you staring and you'd tried to cover it by asking about them. The piercings. Not the abs.

"You sure do have a lot of piercings." Yup, that is indeed a thing you said.

And then he just sort of casually mentioned that wasn't even all of the ones he had which--

Your mind swirled with the implications.

Because. Yeah. There were very few places he could be hiding extra piercings.

You're not sure if he was flirting or genuinely answering your question about the piercings.

Despite the fact that your alternate self, Silica, has definitely dabbled in the romance side of things during your time working together... You've never really felt that way about anyone.

Mostly, you suspect that's due to how often you were third party to your sister and her boyfriend making out, and rather frequently going well beyond that.

You guess you found your type now??

You're not entirely sure what to make of that beyond the fact that...

Well, you may have missed your chances for romance back on Aincrad... but, well... not only is this a whole different dimension... it's a whole other Galaxy too.

It might be high time you let loose and lived, just a little.

While off duty, of course.

Chapter Text

Your name is Lynera Skalbi and you feel your heart drop out as you see them, sneaking off into the forest that night after the Sign Ceremony.

Bronya and some bronze blooded girl you've never seen before just.

Going and.

Sure, you could see it from one of the others who left. Sumara, probably. Daraya would probably hook up with someone eventually.

Wanshi.... Eh. Probably?? Depends on the guy/gal.

But Bronya??

Bronya...

Fucking...

Just...

...

You thought she wouldn't do that to you ever. You thought...

You thought you were going to be hers and she was going to be yours.

You find yourself raging alone in the forest- punching at a tree that did little to deserve your anger being taken out on it other than that it was just there.

"Wow, now that's a temper tantrum if ever I've seen one. But you should stop before you wreck your hands."

And then you stop, and turn slowly to turn and look at the random ass Cerulean blood who found you out here wallowing in your own misery. "W...What?" you ask, taking her in.

She's leaning against a tree, looking all... all... All dapper and PUNKY and suave and... and is that neon blue hair?? Dyed, no doubt....

"Your hands, you jades are pretty tough, but you're gonna break your hands if you keep punching it," the cerulean blood says, drawing a knife from within her jacket, and handing it to you, handle first. "Use this on the tree instead."

And so you do.

You make very fast work of the tree in short order, and there's a lot of firewood for later, you suppose.

Huffing, you turn to the girl, and say, "Thanks. I needed that." You offer her the knife back.

"Nah, keep it. It's yours," the girl says. "I think you need it more than me."

"...Thanks," You're not sure exactly where to stow it so you kinda just shove it blade first between your skirt and-

And you're an idiot because you yelp as the blade ends up slicing into your hip through your underwear.

"Oi, oi!" Cerulean blood immediately has some bandages from her-

From her Sylladex. Of course. Why didn't you--?

"Right, I should have given you the sheath for it first, just- damn it, let me see that before you bleed all over the place." She keeps mumbling while you sort of just stand there in shock that this total stranger is suddenly fussing over you and-

That night, and the week that followed, you ended up pants-less in front of Elwurd for entirely un-sexy reasons such as changing bandages.

During that time, you mentioned how much it hurt that you'd never get the chance to ever be with Brronya.... even in parting.

And then Elwurd suggested she use her mind powers on you to give you that chance to say good bye... using her as a substitute body for Bronya.

Thus, barely even a month after you first met, in the privacy of a small basement dug out to be beneath a new Hive, you wound up pants-less in front of her in a distinctly sexy way.

You got to say goodbye to that possibility of you and Bronya ever being together...

And you said hello to the possibility of replacing her entirely.

Chapter Text

Your name is Violet Delair and you sigh in relief as you check in on the young grub that you picked up from the care of the Jades early last week.

Sunnyy is still in her crib, snoozing away the day, utterly having forgotten about the trust that had been violated by one of the Jade Blood's own Caretakers. You've heard they're seriously re-working their security ethics in the wake of it.

When you'd picked her up, oh, the little grub in your  arms had coiled up tightly, not quite sure what to make of the new person holding them. But... they didn't bite. They  did bare her teeth in a crude approximation of a smile, though. But they did not bite.

They didn't need to. They could tell, you're sure, that you're not going to risk them any harm unlike Lynera.

Now there is a person who makes your skin crawl.

Jade Bloods are supposed to be matrons who put the care of their charges above all else. And especially a Diasporan Jade Blood who do things a bit differently anyways. The fact that... that a personal ideal could get in the way of such a thing and risk your team's CHILD of all grubs....

You want to snarl at the thought.

Klauss and Izador and Duncan are all of varrying thoughts on the matter. Personally...  you just want Lynera dead and as far away from your sunny little ray of sunshine as physically possible.

Preferably in a black hole.

Despite all of that, though.... a part of you can't help but wonder if SUNNYY didn't inherit your team's propensity for bad luck.

The four of you had decided that you were going to have a family together because, despite that your combined presence continually brought down bad luck on just about anyone that hung around you... you'd survived. More, you'd survived together.

No matter how unfortunate, or frequent the series of events... you survived.

So, what was wrong with adding one more? Surely together the four of you could keep a grub alive and unharmed and--

And fate conspires to take Sunnyy from you before she even gets given to you, but just like you and your team... she got her way out of it by biting down on Lynera's arm.

She'll be strong, some day. Strong and Smart and- And you're going to help protect her to the best of your ability.

"You're going to be a real star someday, Sunnyy," you smile, reaching down and stroking at the tiny tufts of hair framing Sunnyy's sleeping face. "I'll make sure of that."

Chapter Text

"Why can't I make friends like that?" Beckett inquires, staring at Sheppard, Jackson, and Lalonde as they talk with Weir and one of the Athosians. Tey...la? Teyla you think?

"You need to get out more," you say before nibbling at a bit of fried chicken.

Hrm. There's an odd sort of flavor there...

"We're in a whole other galaxy. How much more far out can we get?" Beckett inquires, but...

You've got more of a bigger concern.

"Does this have lemon in it?" You frown, staring at the chicken you've been eating, and then wander off to the chef's table.

"Um, excuse me," you inquire of the chef- an Alternian kid (Okay, maybe not kid, but he's certainly a young fellow)  with a bun-themed vest, and a baseball cap reading "Ask Me About My Dogs!" written by hand on it.

"Yes?" The boy... Damien? No that's not it... Dice... Dyce... Dye...

"Does the chicken have lemon in it? I'm allergic to citrus," you tell him.

"Lemme see..." the kid takes a small knife fresh out of his sylladex, chops off a bit off the end of the chicken that you hadn't touched, and consumes that piece. "Ah. No. This is the Sourbell flavored Fried Cluckbeast. Not Lemon flavored Fried Chicken. Very similar flavor profile, but not a 'citrus' at all."

"Ah," you nod in acceptance. "Okay, good. Thanks," you say.

Die... Die. Diemen! That's his name.

"Thanks, Chef Diemen, glad to know it," you say, and then head off with renewed faith in your meal's integrity.

"Any time, Doctor Mckay!" The teen chef waves.