Disclaimer: See profile
A/N: There's an eight out of ten chance that I will kill a major/main character during the course of the story. If you don't like it you can bugger off to some other story.
A/N 2: Flamers can go to a deep hole and jump into it. Everyone else should enjoy the story.
I think that's everything. Follow the above, be realistic, this is a story and it's written to be fun, not a 100% correct, and we will all get along and enjoy this story.
Mokar. That's was the name he'd been given and the name he carried. At the moment he was lying face up in the sand as his body recovered from the Zat'nik'tel shoot he'd gotten in the arena.
That cursed place was nothing more than a ruined city where eight Jaffa were taken every seventh revolution of the fiery orb in the sky. Each of the Jaffa was only allowed their most basic clothes and a single Zat'nik'tel. The last one standing would walk away while the other seven would never be seen again. All Jaffa participated in the arena on the year of their twentieth birthday, those who survived the arena trained the coming participants. Of course more Jaffa where birthed than needed in the arena, but strangely enough there were never more Jaffa than needed for the arena.
Now he'd failed in the arena and he could see the gray pyramidic shape of the Tel'tak, which had picked up the losers ever since he was a kid, looming overhead as the rings sliced through the air and enveloped him in a bright light. As the light faded he saw the rings falling down into the ground beneath him. But if the black roof with it's golden supports were anything to go by he was inside, so it must have been through the floor that the rings fell. The wonders of their goddess Arinna never failed to amaze him.
From his right two pair of hands dragged him to the side before the rings came through the floor again and another knocked out Jaffa appeared in the bright light. Without care the owners of the two hands stepped over him pulled the other Jaffa out from where the rings came and went. As the muscles in his neck returned to his control he turned his head to his right and saw the heads of at least two other, one of which he'd taken down himself.
Looking back up he just had time to see a man he couldn't quite place firing a Zat'nik'tel into his face.
The next thing he felt was ice cold water pouring over his face. Without as much as wiping it of his face he sat up and opened his eyes to see the a well armoured back leaving the tight cell he was now in. Apparently others were given the same awakening because he could hear shouts and curses coming from outside the cell. Stuffed in a corner he could see his armour and his staff, which he quickly collected and hurried to dress in.
From outside he heard the calling, a sound he couldn't describe if anyone asked, which signalled that their goddess had another announcement to make. Something which seemed kind of strange since he would never been seen again.
Stepping out of his cell he could see six of the other participants, but not Burdoc which meant he was the winner. Probably through the use of his fists and feet if the bruises on three of the others was anything to go by, at least he'd avoided that fate and gotten a blast in the face from Korac, who herself looked like her face had gone up against the underside of Burdoc's foot.
On the far side of the open area the glorious form of their goddess rose towards the roof he guessed was there given the lack of bright light on the otherwise always clear sky which had always been above their heads. From her huge form he heard her mighty voice. "Hear me Jaffa. You have failed in the arena but as your benevolent goddess I offer you the chance to live again. Pass through the door at my feet and you will be brought to the first challenge, at the entrance you will find the supplies I have bestowed upon you for the journey. My first prime will inform you when your chance to live again has come." Then she faded away and a large man came out from a side room, the golden mark on his forehead glowing in the artificial light which seemed to come from everywhere at the same time, and strode up to the six.
Without as much as a second of hesitation he walked up to one of the more heavily bruised Jaffa and shoved him down the three small steps in the direction of the gateway which stood where their goddesses feets had been placed seconds before. When the Jaffa hesitated in front of the yellow gateway the first prime gave him a forceful kick in the back so that he fell through the yellow gateway, then the first prime picked up the things left right beside it and threw it through the gateway before he motioned for the others to leave.
Unsure of where to go he directed his steps back to the cell he'd awoken in. He'd perform Kelno'reem until it was his turn. Then he'd be well prepared for the challenges. As he sat down on the floor to begin he heard a shriek which made every hair on his body stand. It took him a few seconds to calm down but it wasn't long until he achieved Kelno'reem and it wasn't until he received a smack on the head from the first prime that he awoke.
Still not talking the first prime motioned for the door and the gateway beyond. Taking the hint he got up and left the cell behind. At the gateway he picked up the stuff quickly. He couldn't have been more than three quarters of the other mans high and he didn't feel like getting that big foot in his back. The surface of the yellow gateway wasn't sticky like it looked, it actually didn't feel like anything other than the surrounding air. When he stepped through he felt a slight tingling feeling but it was gone when he came through. Once on the other side he sat down with his back against the wall, from this side he could clearly see the first prime walking away and when he tried to move his hand back through the door a clear but solid barrier blocked him.
Turning his attention back to the task at hand he looked through what he had, there was his armour, his staff and Zat'nik'tel. In the supplies given to him by his goddess was a Chappa'ai dialler and a tablet with the address and an order to return to the planet when given the chance, he'd never used the Chappa'ai but it was all part of the training. Also in the supplies were lots of food and water, enough for several weeks if he rationed it and that was it. Not even an instruction, but with only one path to go it wasn't to hard to make the call on his own. A few hundred steps into the corridor the yellow stone walls changed into dark grey metal walls with intriguing patterns, but he wasn't here for those where he? No his task had been to complete the challenges and return to his life.
Some distance down the path it opened up into a large hall. A quick check of the walls showed no opening, only the door he came through. Halfway to the other side of the room he saw a brown pile lying. Looking back up he saw the room had changed to a desert like the one surrounding their village without him moving a single step and when he looked back the brown pile was lying in the same place but now it was sitting on top of a stone pillar which stretched out above a chasm which seemed to lead down into and endless abyss in both directions. Crossing the gap from the cliff he was standing on to the pillar was a small bridge and small really meant small in this case, it was at most half the width of his foot.
But that didn't matter, the brown pile of rags could be the Jaffa who came before and one more Jaffa could be helpful. And if he was dead then any trap out there would already have been springed. So he stripped of his armour, something which went against everything he'd been thought, to lighten his load a bit. Taking a careful step onto the bridge he heard a rock tumble down the side of the cliff. Another step created a crack along the entire bridge. The next step shook the bridge, throwing him off his feet. When the shakings stopped he was hanging in one hand but even with just a few fingers the overly fit Jaffa could have pulled himself up with ease, so once back on the bridge he steadied himself and took another four steps before he felt a gust of wind from his right. A quick glance in the direction revealed a pillar of sand coming over the horizon and it was growing in size quickly. Slightly increasing his pace he took the last ten steps to the pillar and the brown pile. The top of the pillar wasn't awfully large, but it still gave him enough room to kick the pile slightly and when nothing happened he pulled the brown rag of it.
Beneath the rag was the Jaffa who'd entered before him, but he was long gone, the metal of his armour fused into his flesh and the staff lying as a molten mess in his hands. Flipping the Jaffa over he saw the deformed face of his former comrade, but protected beneath the body was the Zat'nik'tel and all of the supplies he'd been given at the start of the journey. As he begun to pick up the stuff he felt the first grains of sand caressing his skin and a quick gaze in the direction of the sandstorm showed it to be dangerously close. Judging his options he dropped all but the food and water and quickly but steadily got back onto solid ground. He didn't need to look back to know that the crushing sound was the pillar falling down into the abyss. As a kid he'd heard the same sound when one of the other kids had played on a similar pillar over a much shallower crevice and it had collapsed. Ever since then he'd been afraid of heights. A Jaffa was not afraid of anything, so he'd trained every day to get over it, to ignore the feeling of dread he felt every time he could see ground which was further down than the ground he was standing on.
Now the sandstorm was beginning to make its presence known properly. A quite look revealed nothing but sand on his side of the abyss and on the other side he could see a dune rising up in the distance. He'd been in enough sandstorms to weigh his options against each other. It didn't take him more than a few seconds to make the call to move further into the endless desert, away from the abyss. A short time before the sandstorm was about to hit him he laid down in the sand on the leeward side of a tiny dune and pulled up his cloak to cover his face. Then he settled down to ride out the storm, just like they'd done so many times during training.
Several hours later the storm passed and he begun to shake of the sand. When he looked around he no longer saw the desert around him but a great hall, with perfectly smooth black walls, filled with bodies in different positions, some almost fresh and some no more than rotting bones. Looking to the far side of the room he saw a bright light approaching him. Turning around to find a place to look over his situation he stumbled and fell on the leg of a long dead Jaffa, shoving his face into the pouch on another Jaffa's stomach. Pulling out he realised the pouch was burnt out and as was the one on the Jaffa right next to him.
The symbiote inside him was a gift from Arinna just like those who'd been inside the others now lying dead on the floor, what ever her reasons their goddess must have been angry at them for using the gift in such a way. Yet it was her divine gift. In a hurry to finish before the approaching light reached him he begun to throw away the bodies around him. Then he fell on his knees and plunged one hand into his pouch. As he withdrew the slimy symbiote from his pouch he grasped it with both hands and held it out in front of him as a gift to the light. When the light hit the symbiote it turned into burning red and crimson flames engulfing his hands, burning both flesh and skin from his fingers.
When he no longer felt the symbiote twisting between his fingers the light returned to its white soothing colour and continued its path forward. As he was almost standing with his back to the wall the light soon faded when it reached the wall, plunging the room into total darkness. Then a bright light surrounded him, just like the rings before, and he found himself inside yet another room. This one had the grey metallic walls with the patterns on them and a narrow path leading away.
Taking the cue he got up and carefully moved down the path. A few steps down the path a clear barrier blocked his path and another stopped him from going back. After a second two purple ribbons wrapped around him as red and blue dots followed and joined the two together. Unable to move he could only watch as the dots moved and changed colour for several minutes, until both barriers, the ribbons and the dots vanished as suddenly as they'd appeared. Hesitant about what was happening he slowed his pace and felt as the world begun to spin around him. Another dozen steps brought him up to the next pair of barriers where his body was forcedly straightened and turned towards one of the walls, this one held a dark green round plate with a smaller round, pitch black, hole inside it. Round really wasn't the right word, because the plate and the hole wasn't circles or ellipses, but rather a circle upon which eight smaller circles had their center, but round was probably the easiest way to describe it, so his mind would settle for it.
As his face was positioned in front of the hole a bright light engulfed his face, all these bright lights were beginning to burn his eyes, but for his goddess he'd look right into the fireball in the sky for as long as it burned. Then his head fell limp to his side and the invisible barriers carried him away deeper into the corridor.