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G is for Grandpa Nick

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Looking back, Daniel knew he had to be particularly grateful to the first foster family that took him in after his parents died.

The sympathetic social worker had told them about Nick Ballard -- "So sad, but he's not capable of taking Daniel. He's in an institution himself." She had left contact information for Nick with the foster parents.

A month later, the George's took Daniel to visit his grandfather.

"Danny--" he couldn't get them to call him 'Daniel' -- "This is your Grandfather Nick."

Nick had peered closely at Daniel and asked, "Do you know any Mayan?"

"Excuse me?" Daniel was puzzled.

"The language, Mayan!" Nick had boomed.

"No..." Daniel said reluctantly.

"Then what languages do you know?" Nick demanded.

"Umm... English, I guess," Daniel was still confused.

"Hrmph. That won't do!" Nick had declared. "I need help with translating, and you should be my helper!"

"I can learn!" Daniel had promised.

That was the start of Daniel's semi-regular visits to Nick.

"Learned Mayan yet?" Nick would ask.

"No, but I've started on Italian and Spanish," Daniel would report. "And I can start Greek next year in school."

"Good, good," Nick beamed. "Always good to learn all the languages you can!"

Daniel was fortunate that most of the foster homes he lived in helped him visit Nick. He'd trade chores with any of the other kids to make sure someone would be able to take him. When he was finally old enough to drive, he found a part time job so that he could pay for the gas.

By the time he learned Mayan, Daniel was in graduate school. Nick had beamed at him when Daniel was able to finally report that he had learned the language.

When Catherine Langford asked him to translate mysterious Egyptian cover stones, it had been over a year since he had seen Nick.

He wasn't to know their next meeting would involve a trip to P7X-377 -- proving both of their long held theories to be true.