Chapter IX: The NID (National Institute of Dimwits)

I don't own Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Stargate SG-1. They belong to Joss Whedon and MGM respectively.

November 8th, 1997
Holding Room I, Stargate Command

Colonel Harry Maybourne put up an excellent show of superiority as he met the alien's unworried stare with a pompous glare of his own. "Stand up and come here. You're coming with me."

The colonel felt a sense of unease begin to well in his stomach as the alien entity laughed aloud in its all too human voice. "You were talking to me then? Gee man, I hate to burst your bubble, but I'm not an alien. I'm from California."

Maybourne growled faintly. "I know you're a Goa'uld, young man. So you can just cut the games and come with me."

Xander grinned benignly. "Actually, I'm a human. It's the symbiote within me that might be called a Goa'uld, if you want to be politically incorrect. If you want to be polite, he's a Tok'ra.

Maybourne shook his head in faint exasperation. "Goa'uld or Tok'ra, I have a piece of paper that puts you in my custody. It's even signed by the president."

Xander shrugged uncaringly. "The president? Well isn't that special. I don't suppose I can take a look at this important document that apparently makes me your prisoner?"

"You may not. I'll not have you destroying an official document of the United States government."

The Californian lad snorted in amusement. "I'm not planning to destroy it. I want to make sure that it's real and that it says what you say it does. Janus says he wouldn't put it past the National Institute of Dimwits, that's you, to try to fake something up. What are you afraid of, Colonel? If I tear up the document, I'll all but openly confirm that it's authentic to everyone in this room."

Hammond and SG-1 looked on in shock and faint amusement as Xander forced the NID man into a situation where he either had to put up or shut up.

Maybourne looked conflicted. He really wanted to rip the kid a new one for having the gall to insult the National Intelligence Directorate, but he really had nothing to hide. The document from the president might have been gotten by slightly underhanded means, but it certainly said what he had claimed it did. Slowly, Maybourne withdrew his Presidential Order and laid it on the table. "Read away, kid. It won't change anything."

Xander calmly pulled the document over to his side of the table and then inspected it. It took him no time to come to the conclusion that Janus was right. The NID was filled with idiots.

Shenzi snorted from within his mind, 'You're giving this nincompoop too much credit.'

Xander smirked faintly. 'True enough. Still, best to just end this quickly.' "I'm afraid I don't see anything allowing you to take me into custody, Colonel."

The colonel practically leapt across the table and read the document over quickly, looking to discover what had been done to his precious order. His stomach unclenched quickly when he realised that the document was unchanged. "It seems your education isn't very good, son. My order clearly places you in my custody."

Xander chuckled and shook his head. "I'm afraid not, Colonel. It seems to be your education that's lacking. That order tells you to take the alien into custody. There's no alien here, bar Teal'c, and I believe his case has already been resolved. As I said before, I am from California. Therefore, I'm not an alien."

Maybourne sneered in response. "It makes provisions for people who are possessed by aliens, kid. You still qualify."

Harris shook his head with a pitying smile that had SG-1 holding back laughter. "Alas, I am not possessed by an alien. Janus is from California too."

The NID colonel flushed with increasing annoyance. "Janus is a Goa'uld. Therefore he is an alien!"

The Californian teenager shook his head once more. "I could lecture you on the differences between the Goa'uld and the Tok'ra, but that would be futile and ultimately irrelevant. It may have escaped your attention but, depending on the definition you use, an alien is either a person from another country, or a being from another planet. Janus is neither. He came into being in Southern California just over a week ago."

The various members of SG-1 watched in amusement as Maybourne dissolved into virtually incoherent sputtering at this declaration. Finally Maybourne rallied. "This document refers to the symbiote kid."

"Then perhaps the order should have referred to a symbiote, Colonel." General Hammond finally broke into the argument. "It should have stated a Goa'uld, a Tok'ra or a symbiote. It does not. It orders the apprehension of an alien, which Mr. Harris has proven that he is not. I suggest you go back to your superiors and report that Mr. Harris is not going to be coming for a visit."

Maybourne ground his teeth in frustration. The alien had turned him into a laughingstock, picking apart just one damned word in his carefully crafted order and making it nonviable. With a two-star general now essentially telling him to clear out and his presidential order reduced in value to a piece of very unique, autographed toilet paper, he was left with only one option: retreat to base and try to regroup for the next round. "Yes, Sir, I suppose I'll have to talk to the president about changing the order for my return here…"

The bald general smiled menacingly. "No need, Colonel. I'll be sure to call the president on my phone and get all the clarification we need."

The colonel looked like he'd been sucking on a lemon at that response. Unable to formulate a viable tactic, he simply nodded and left the room, escorted by a member of the SGC.

Hammond interlocked his fingers and turned in a deliberate manner to his guest. "That should keep the NID off of our backs for a while, Janus, but I'll need something substantial to give the president if we want them to leave you alone in the long run."

Xander's eyes flashed dramatically as Janus retook command. "On this we are agreed, General. In addition to the intelligence I have offered already, which I'll admit is not of much immediate use, I have three things to offer. The first is to your immediate benefit. I can offer the coordinates of some fifty worlds that are considered of key strategic importance in this galaxy. I can also further clarify which Goa'uld own the world in question, the extent of the defences and what makes these worlds so valuable. I will also tell you if the ownership of any of these worlds are disputed and by whom."

The general nodded. Up to date intelligence on the enemy was potentially very valuable. Teal'c only knew so much and mostly about Apophis. "You said that there were three things. I believe that was one."

Janus nodded agreeably. "The second is not to your immediate benefit, but has the potential to save your entire world. I can tell you that, in addition to the Chappa'ai in Antarctica, there is an outpost of great value, buried deep within the ice. I do not know precisely where it is, nor do I know any way to access it short of transport rings, but this outpost was built by the Ancients. While the platform is currently without power, it has the potential capacity to defend the planet from a significantly sized fleet of Goa'uld vessels."* Janus smiled at the almost giddy smile on O'Neill's face. I also know of multiple locations where you may procure a replacement power source, but all of them are rather difficult to get to."

Hammond smiled faintly. While this Ancient Outpost sounded like it would be a lot of work to locate and power, it also sounded like it would present a truly viable means of effectively defending the planet from an extra-planetary attack. "That sounds very promising. And the last thing…?"

Janus smiled. "The last thing will benefit both of us greatly, if we can trust one another. I have in my possession the address for the world of Pangar. Pangar is the prison where Ra imprisoned our beloved Queen Egeria. It is also presents a potential lasting solution for the end of the slavery of the Jaffa…"

*In canon the outpost of the Ancients obliterated a truly massive star fleet that was assembled by Anubis. By comparison, Apophis' two little ships could be swatted like annoying insects. Of course, this presupposes that the SGC can find and power up the outpost in time.

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