Time to say goodbye,
To countries I never
Saw and shared with you,
Now, yes, I shall experience them,
I'll go with you
On ships across seas
Which, I know,
No, no, exist no longer;
With you I shall experience them.

Time to Say Goodbye – English Lyrics

Story: The Untold True Life Adventures of Jacob Carter, The Very Model of a Modern Major General – Part 13

Rating: PG-13 Jake and Sel do curse a bit, and two souls get rather friendly.

Synopsis:

Jake Carter is out of remission while Selmak is dying. It's up to Jack O'Neill to salvage the situation that is rapidly spinning out of control. And Jack must not fail for the future of the universe is highly dependant not only on SG1 but also on a cranky Air Force General named Jake and a rather sarcastic, yet sassy, Head Snake called Selmak.

? Bold Italics ? Is when Selmak is thinking to Jacob so he can hear her.

This is the final chapter in the Modern Major General Series. Sel would like to thank all of you that muddled to the very bitter end of this story. Special thanks to Demon, for grammar betaing, JakeFanatic for comments and especially to Stephanie, Queen of the Nags who told me, that after working on my very first Stargate story for over a year, that it was long past time to finish it.

Yeah, that means, if you don't like this story, blame Stephanie.


Janet was sitting in her office, with the door only partially opened. It was a sign to her staff that while she was in, she'd prefer not to be interrupted unless it was a life and death emergency. She was busy charting Jacob's blood work, reviewing his stats, and attempting to decide what pharmaceutical cocktail might sustain and possibly prolong his life.

First of all, she shouldn't even be his doctor, as it violated her medical code of conduct, but Jake told her that if she didn't treat him, nobody would. She had protested, claiming that she was too close to him and he had insisted that she treat him. Janet had left messages for both Hammond and Samantha to see her as soon as they got in, which checking her watch, should be in another twenty minutes for Samantha, and George should be storming in at any moment.

Someone knocked at her door, and she sighed.

"One moment," Janet called, as she tried to put Jake's chart into a neat pile. She was still futzing around with it, when she heard someone plop into the chair in front of her desk.

"Morning," Jack O'Neill said.

Oh. CRAP!


"Colonel, good morning. I'm a little busy right now, so someone else can wrap your hand," she snapped.

"Actually I did it myself, I used some of those cool camouflage band aids, so I can go out on a mission," Jack said as he extended his hand toward her, showing off his neat handiwork.

"That's nice, Sir, but I'm a little busy right now," Janet protested. "If you don't have anything else to discuss, I'll have to ask you to leave."

Jack got up, closed the door and then turned to face Janet.

"Have a nice date with Jake? I understand Denver is very nice this time of year," O'Neill teased.

Doctor Frasier looked up from her paperwork, and she growled. "Yes."

"Yes, what?" O'Neill prompted. "Come on, give me all the details on your date."

"Denver is extremely nice at this time of year, and that's all you need to know, Colonel," she barked.

"Might touchy aren't we? Ok, Doc, what gives?" He questioned.

"Colonel, I really don't have time for questions on my social life," Janet protested as she continued staring at the paperwork on her desk. "I appreciate your concern, I'll let you know if and when Jake and I get married, but until then, it's none of your business. In fact, I don't think it is any of your business even if Jake and I do get married in a nice little ceremony, because you're not invited. Good day!"

"What's going on with Jake? He looks like hell," Jack informed her. "You're doing a biopsy on him?"

"No, in fact I am not doing a biopsy on him, as I am sitting in my office," the doctor stated. "He's just fine; we're just running some tests on him to increase our knowledge of post-repudiation hosts."

"Doctor, cut the crap. He's looks worse than he did when we dragged his sorry ass through the gate to meet Selmak," Jack protested. "What's going on?"

"Sir, it is none of your business, and even if it was, I couldn't tell you a thing due to Patient Confidentiality, you understand," Janet stated.

"Carter's my team member, I need to know," he protested.

"Jacob is none of your concern," the doctor retorted, her composure slipping slightly. "While I'm sure Jacob would greatly appreciate your concern if he was aware of it, I seem to recall that you two don't even like each other."

"I like Jake," Jack protested, because after a long sleepless night of thinking, he had decided, in fact, that he did like the old coot.

"Is it the End Times, and someone forgot to inform me?" The diminutive doctor questioned in a very sarcastic tone of voice. "I would have ordered more band aids."

"Next time, get the Camo ones, they're cooler," Jack inserted helpfully. "But, Doctor, what's going on?"

Fortunately, someone knocked on the door, and Janet was obviously grateful for the reprieve.

"Come," she said, sounding a bit like Jean-Luc Picard, Jack thought.

George Hammond stuck his head in, and questioned, "Am I interrupting something?"

Janet flashed the General her megawatt smile and said, "No, Colonel O'Neill was just leaving."

George entered, Jack was kicked out, and then the door was closed and then locked.

"Fine," Jack protested to the uncaring universe. "Be that way. I'll just have to find out on my own."

Jack nodded, and he began scoping out the environment, until he was nearly tackled by Samantha Carter. While being tackled by Captain Carter would have been a very pleasant way to start the day, O'Neill was glad that it was a near mishap.

Else he'd have to explain to George AND Jake what had happened.

"Sir! I didn't see you," she explained. "I'm sorry. Is Janet in there?"

"Yes, with General Hammond," he said to blank space, as Samantha had zipped over to the door, knocked the secret knock and had been admitted quickly into the inner sanctum.

"You know, a lesser man might get his ego bruised by all this rejection. Now, if I was a patient, and had stars on my shoulders, where would I be?" Jack paused for a moment, and remembered the one time George had ended up as a patient in the infirmary due a mishap involving Siler. It had been a rather scary four hours for Jack. He had been in charge, with Hammond incommunicado and Siler panicking about being demoted down to Airman.

"Three doors down and on the left," he said.


Jack left the infirmary, humming and then entered the hallway, where Teal'c and Daniel were waiting.

"What's going on? Sam had a message from Janet, and she ran down here," Daniel questioned.

"It's her father, he doesn't look good. They have Hammond and Carter in Frasier's office," Jack informed his team.

"Where did you see Jake?" Daniel questioned.

"They were wheeling him down in a stretcher. Something about a biopsy," Jack explained.

"His cancer's back?" Daniel looked surprised. "I thought Selmak fixed him."

"Selmak would not have left Jacob Carter ill," Teal'c inserted calmly.

Jack bit his lip from growling, but he did look annoyed.

"Well, they're doing a biopsy, T, so maybe the old lady missed something," Jack stated. "I don't think Jake's doing well. I think he's out of remission, and in fact, he's quite ill."

Daniel smiled tightly and then looked at Teal'c. "Fine, I'll bite."

He then looked at Jack and questioned O'Neill, "And why, pray tell, do you think that, considering that you don't have any concrete info?"

"It's the way Janet's acting. She's got that little laugh of hers, you know, the 'you're really yakked, but I'm trying to be upbeat' laugh," Jack explained, and then continued on louder when he saw his team's look of disbelief. "She was crying in the hallway, muttering about how much she hates her job."

Teal'c and Daniel looked at each other, and then looked at Jack.

"That's not good," Daniel agreed.

"Indeed," Teal'c agreed.

"We need to find out what's going on," Jack decided. Jake wasn't back yet from his biopsy more than likely – so Jack decided it was time to talk to a certain snake. "T – point. Follow me."

"What are we doing?" Daniel questioned, as he was a little worried about Jack. Like the good boy Daniel was and had always been, he knew that when Jack looked intent, that meant the entire team would be getting into trouble. "Are we doing something that will get Janet annoyed? We can just wait for Samantha to get out of the office."

Jack waved his fingers, to anyone not in the military, it would look like gibberish, but to the highly trained team of SG1, it meant something.

Shut up, follow me, don't ask any questions.

And Daniel realized that Jack had left out that single, solitary gesture which meant, "Hammond will be really annoyed with us for doing this".


Samantha Carter entered the room and looked at Janet and then at General Hammond. She took the chair closet to Hammond. He was upset, though trying to hide it, and Janet looked about the same.

"What's the problem with Dad?" Samantha questioned. "The cancer's back?"

Janet nodded mutely, before quickly rubbing her eyes, and Sam's heart froze.

"It's not good, is it?"

"His prognosis is… poor…" Janet explained slowly. "I'm sorry, Samantha, it's only a matter of time. Maybe hours… maybe a day or so."

Blinking in amazement, Samantha leaned back in her chair. Her father was dying? Again?

"I feel like I'm on an out-of-control roller coaster," she confessed. "What happened? He was fine, yesterday."

She felt Janet reach for her hands, and she was grateful for that support and when Hammond put his hands on top of Janet's.

"Your father seemed extremely healthy yesterday," Janet admitted.

Even though Samantha's mind was running in circles, screaming and shouting questions, Sam noticed that Janet was blushing ever so slightly.

"I mean, all his test results were fine. This morning, your father wanted to have a physical as he didn't feel well," Janet continued, her face regaining its normal color. "The test results came back bad, and the results got progressively worse."

"Where is he?" Hammond questioned. "I want to talk to him about yesterday."

Janet checked her watched, and made a mental calculation.

"Probably on the way back from his bone marrow biopsy, I called in the only oncologist that has the security level to be dealing with this, and she wanted a bone marrow biopsy. I hate to say this, but I think it's just a waste of time." Janet admitted that softly. "We talked before he went down to have the procedure done. Jake doesn't want any heroic measures. He just wants a death with dignity."

"I hold his power of attorney," George protested. "The symbiote is going back in."

Janet shook her head, and then, she took a tissue from her desk. Dabbing at her eyes, she explained that she already tried that tact with Jacob.

"He won't take Selmak back, as Jake is convinced that there's a host coming for her. I'm supposed to tell Selmak's new host that Jake went on vacation to Disneyland," Janet admitted shakily. "Apparently, Selmak always wanted to go to Disney."


Maybourne and Vidrine had also been scheduled for Jake's meeting with Hammond. Then Walt Davis had informed the two gentlemen that something had come up, and that George had a priority meeting.

"Is General Carter even in the building?" Vidrine questioned. "Or is this a feeble attempt by George to save Jacob's ass?"

Walt gave a weak smile, his eyes focused on Vidrine's three stars. "Sir, I do not know. Doctor Frasier requested a meeting with both General Hammond and Captain Carter."

Vidrine thanked Davis icily for the information and then informed him that it was his lucky day, as Davis was going to escort him down the infirmary.


Martouf and Lantesh were standing next to Selmak's tank, even while the Selmak hologram was complaining.

"I wanted a nice, simple death, why did you have to make it into such a production?" Selmak griped loudly. "Can't the Council get it through their heads, I'm committing suicide! It's my RIGHT! I'm doing this for Jacob's sake. Are you listening to me?"

Martouf ignored Selmak's hologram, and put several drops of medication into the tank.

The still symbiote in the tank was off-colored, and lying on the bottom on the tank, its head resting close to a rather water-logged rose. Every once in a while, it would move its tail or flick a flipper, perhaps even stretch its head closer to the rose, but mainly it did nothing.

"You're not listening to me," Selmak groused, as the hologram prodded Martouf in the back with Sorrentino's hook. For good measure, Selmak jabbed the uncomplaining Martouf a few more times, causing Martouf the martyr to wince slightly as Selmak took out her annoyance on him.

"You are a hologram, you are not Selmak," Lantesh finally snapped. "Will you stop prodding my host with that… attachment?"

"I am Selmak," Selmak snapped. "I was there when you were spawned, Lantesh. I held Martouf's hand when he blended with you. I was there when Martouf shot himself in the foot with a ZAT because of your reckless nature!"

That stopped Lantesh cold, and Martouf turned red. The moment in the training class hadn't been one of their finer moments.

"You may have Selmak's memories, but you do not speak for Selmak," Lantesh stated, trying a new tactic.

"YES, I DO SPEAK FOR SELMAK!" Selmak roared. "I'm dying, it'll be a matter of hours now, and I will be at peace. Why must you ruin it? Why must the council fight me on this?"

Unexpectedly, more people entered the room, and Selmak gazed heavenwards when she realized that it was O'Neill and his cronies. Behind them were the Vidrine. Fortunately the Maybourne was nowhere to be found.

"By the very blessed womb of Egeria, why is everyone against me today?"


Janet's phone rang and she grabbed it, after motioning for her visitors to be silent.

"Ok, ok… ok…" She sighed, before jotting down notes. Her face grew more and more serious, as she continued to write. "Valium, right? What else? What's the dosage? How long? Yes… Yes…yes… bring him up here. That's right… No, I don't want a cat scan. You heard me, I don't want one."

She put the phone down, and she sighed. Then the doctor rubbed her eyes, and her voice was shaky when she began to speak.

"Samantha, your father's in a coma. They gave him a local anesthesia for the biopsy, and he had a grand mal seizure before they could do the biopsy. Your father was given valium to break the seizure as he was Status epilepticus, which means he was having the seizures, one right after another, without a recovery period. Right now, he's in the post itical stage, which means, the seizures have stopped, but he's not responding. They wanted to do a cat scan, to see if the lymphoma had metastasized to the brain, but I think we need to have a serious conversation. General Hammond, you're listed as Jacob's health care proxy; I need to know what you want me to do as Jacob told me that he didn't want any heroic measures."

"First thing we do, is we put Selmak back into Jacob," Hammond growled. "Then when he's better, I'm kicking his goddamn ass to Dallas."

"Sir, I don't think Selmak is in any condition to heal Jacob," Janet Frasier stated slowly, trying to keep her composure. "Selmak is in the same condition, if not worse, than Jacob is in. I think we're going to lose both of them."

Sam nodded her head once, and then informed Janet that she wanted her father pain free and comfortable.

"No heroic measures," Samantha stated, even as George nodded his head in agreement. "But I want to see him when he comes back to his room. I want to be with him… until…"

Closing her eyes for just a second, Samantha nodded her head, and mouthed the words that she couldn't say.

"I want to be there also," General Hammond informed Janet.

"I understand," Janet Frasier said. "I want to be there also, if that's ok with you, Samantha?"

Samantha nodded once, and then the three of them walked slowly out of Janet's office, toward Jacob's room.


The hologram looked annoyed, and Jack didn't care. Instead, he bravely stuck his hand into the tank and grabbed Selmak. His rough handling of the symbiote earned him nothing more than a slight squiggle of annoyance from the moribund symbiote.

"What are you doing?" Selmak yelped. "Put me down! Unhand me, you fiend! Martouf! Are you going to just stand there and smile brightly? Do something! Stop smiling! Make him release me!"

"Or what? You'll bite me? Been there, done that, got the tetanus shot," O'Neill snapped. "Sorry to interrupt your little solo vacation, but you're going back into Jacob."

"No," Selmak protested. "I'm not. I'm dying. I repudiated Jacob to save him from being a Tok'Ra, and I will not allow anyone to put my Jacob through that hell again. I'm doing this for him."

For a moment, Jack O'Neill felt a small bit of compassion for the Tok'Ra Selmak. God help him for being a fool, but O'Neill could and would swear that the Head Snake was being extremely sincere about Jacob.

"Selmak, you have to go back," O'Neill informed the hologram. "Jake is ill."

The hologram laughed, much to O'Neill's amazement. Jack was so surprised that he released the symbiote.

"Jacob is in good health. I healed him. Every little damaged part of him, I fixed," Selmak stated. "I will not listen to your lies, because Jacob is healthy. I fixed him. He's very well right now. He's probably in better health now than he was twenty years ago. I fixed his arthritis; I made sure his cancer was gone. His heart, lungs and brains are all healthy. I fixed the damaged that his cancer and your cancer CURE did to Jacob. He's fine."

"Why would I lie? Answer me that?" Jack argued.

"You all have ulterior motives; I am the only one that has Jacob's best interests at heart. The Tok'Ra do not wish to lose their crutch. Your military does not want to lose their allies in the fight against the Goa'uld while Maybourne wishes to pay Jacob back for what happened in Japan. That is why he is here on this base, and I tell you now, Jacob will not let Maybourne take him to his headquarters," Selmak spat. "He also will not take any of my hosts either!"

Selmak smiled, and whispered something in Goa'uld.

"Oh no," Daniel stated in a worried tone. "Do you think, Selmak that was the right thing to do?"

"What did he just do, Danny?" O'Neill questioned.

"If Maybourne takes the device out of the mountain, it will self-destruct," Teal'c stated quietly.

"And take the mountain with him," Selmak said sweetly. "Right now, it is erasing my previous hosts' matrixes. Even if you stop the timer, the Maybourne will never be able to make the device work.

"Doctor Jackson, you will tell the Maybourne this. Assure him that it was Selmak who spoke," Selmak then spat off a long tirade in Japanese.

Daniel Jackson turned a sickly off white color and when Selmak finished the long winded conversation, Daniel mumbled, "I can see why Jake doesn't like Maybourne."

"Daniel?" Jack inserted. "I only caught a few things of that speech, mainly, 'Ha, ha, ha, I got you now, my pretty, and your little dog too!'."

Selmak rolled his eye and turned away from O'Neill and returned back to the tank.

"If anything happens to Jacob, both General Hammond and Sam will get the evidence that Jake has on Maybourne," Daniel translated. "That's all I'm allowed to tell you."

"Sweet," O'Neill commented, and then he turned serious. "I need to speak to Selmak, alone. Everyone out of the room, please."

Vidrine gave him a look full of promised retribution, and so, O'Neill quickly added a, "If you could leave also, General, I would appreciate it."

Staring at O'Neill for a long time, Vidrine finally nodded his head once, and motioned for everyone to leave the room. Everyone dutifully traipsed out, except for the Lt. General.

"What are you up to?" Vidrine questioned O'Neill.

"Jacob's ill, Selmak needs to go back into him, but I have to convince Selmak of my sincerity," O'Neill explained quietly.

"If Jake's so sick, why don't you just roll the tank down to his bedside, and put Selmak back in," Vidrine questioned.

"If I do that, Sir, no doubt Selmak will think that he is being put into another host against his will, and he might kill Jacob by mistake," O'Neill explained. "Besides, I'm not sure how we go about putting Selmak back into Jacob."

Well besides opening Jake's mouth, dropping the snake in and yelling, "Fire in the hole!" that is, and Jack was sure that there was much much more to the entire process than that.

"Very well," Vidrine agreed. "I'll go find George."

"He's probably with Jacob," O'Neill said helpfully. "Daniel will show you where."


Her father was wheeled back into his room by several orderlies, and there was only the steady beep, beep, beep of medical equipment. Jake was lying in the bed, his still frame looking lost among all the medical equipment. He was wearing an oxygen mask, and his eyes were closed. Janet hustled and bustled around her patient, checking various arcane pieces of medical equipment, her normally expressive face withdrawn and quiet.

Hammond spoke quietly to Samantha, "You know, your father was the craziest pilot I ever knew. Jake flew every plane as fast as he could, and did all these crazy stunts in the air. Nobody wanted to be his J.O. because they thought he had a death wish."

"I got stuck with him because I was the low man on the totem pole, because of a shakeup at my last assignment. One of these days, when the stars are in the proper alignment, I'll have to tell you about what happened at Cheyenne all those years ago, but I ended up in Florida. Fortunately, we hit it off very well, and I finally asked him why he had to be so aggressive in the air. You know what he told me?"

"What, Sir? What did my father say," Samantha question, more out of ingrained sense of politeness.

"Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely, George, in a well preserved body, but rather to skid-in-sideways, totally worn out, shouting... 'YEEE HAAAAA... what a ride!'," George explained.

Samantha laughed softly, "Yeee Haaaaa… what a ride it's been. It's too bad that we hit a lot of turbulence on our flight."

"Yee haaa, Jake, what a fucking ride it's been," Hammond said softly. "What a ride."

Then Harry Maybourne entered the room, and gave Samantha Carter a chilling smile.

"I'm here to collect the body," he stated. "When Jake's dead, his body is to be released to me."


"Talk until you're blue, O'Neill, I will not listen to you," Selmak snapped. "I am tired of your mindless prejudice."

The hologram sat down in a chair that was next to the tank.

"Soon, it will be soon, and Jacob will understand my last gift to him," whispered Selmak. "It is fitting that at the end, I will die alone, for I have been alone for so many years."

O'Neill mentally growled as he thought Selmak needed a few anti-depressants and a good swift kick in the symbiote ass.

Did Symbiotes even have asses?

"Listen to me, Jacob is ill, Selmak," Jack stated loudly.

"I will not listen to your lies anymore," Selmak stated even louder.

"I am not lying to you, Selmak, I am telling you the truth. For example, you are the biggest fucking pain in the ass I know, with the possible exception of myself," O'Neill said intently. "But you've always wanted the best for Jacob."

Selmak stared at the tank, ignoring him, except Jack realized that Selmak couldn't… and wouldn't… tune him out completely because… Selmak cared too much for Jacob.

"Selmak, I saw him today," Jack explained. "He was in a hospital bed, and he was being taken down to Minor Procedure room as they were going to do a biopsy on him."

"They're just so amazed that he's so healthy," Selmak protested. "That's why they're running all those tests. Because I fixed him."

Selmak unexpectedly stood up and faced O'Neill. His blue eye was blazing with emotion and he put his hook in Jack's face.

"I FIXED HIM! HE IS HEALTHY!" Selmak roared. "I did this for his sanity; I will not listen to your lies. I know you, you try to twist things, and inflict pain on my Jacob. First with your words and your disrespect, now you wish to have me blend with Jacob again so you can watch his misery. LIES! I WILL NOT LISTEN TO YOUR LIES!"

"Lies? Selmak, he's sick," Jack retorted. "If he's healthy, why hasn't he visited you today? It must be symbiotic visiting hours? Wouldn't Jake be here, next to your tank, if he was healthy?"

"He's tired," Selmak answered quickly. "He and Janet were out on a date last night. He got in late, and so he's with her, rather than visiting me. I approve of Janet; I think she'll be good for him. I would have liked to have known how the date went, but Jake's a very private soul, perhaps he does not feel comfortable telling me about his date. He will stop by later, and tell me all about it. I will listen to him, and then I will be able to shuffle off this mortal coil as my work here is done."

Selmak began talking to himself, even as Jack tried to find some sort of way to convince Selmak that he wasn't lying to him.

"To die- to sleep. To sleep- perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub! For in that sleep of death what dreams may come when we have shuffled off this mortal coil, must give us pause. Egeria, Blessed, Sainted Egeria, I am tired of this fight, I willingly lay down my arms and pray for peace at the end," the hologram whispered.

Janet.

Jake.

Dating.

Selmak had been positively verbose when talking about Janet. What was that shit that Martouf was always talking about? We live as one, we love as one.

That meant… JANET would be SELMAK'S WEAK SPOT?

"Selmak," Jack paused, trying to find the right words. "Janet was crying in the hallway after they wheeled Jake away."

That stopped Selmak dead in his tracks.

"You are mistaken," Selmak insisted softly.

Selmak doesn't sound very certain, Jack thought, as he finally found Selmak's Achilles' heel. And he was going to pound on the chink in Selmak's armor until he won the war.

"Jake looked extremely ill," Jack explained again, sounding like a broken record. "She was crying, Selmak. Not tears of joy, Selmak, tears of grief."

For a long, long moment, Selmak just stared at Jack and then he asked, "Why should I believe you? You do not like my Jacob and you despise my kind. You view me as a parasite; I think you would be cheering the loudest if Jake and I died."

O'Neill bit his lip and then pointed at Selmak, before speaking the truth, "If you die, I will never be able to forgive myself. I will blame myself for your deaths until the day I die, and I will also blame myself for obliterating the alliances between our two people."

"You'll get over it," Selmak retorted. "Probably before even you leave the base, it will have slipped from your little mind."

"No, I won't," Jack paused and realized how insane this entire situation was. He was this close to laughing and crying.

"Selmak, my son died a long time ago. He shot himself with my own damn gun. No one to blame but myself…no one. If Jake dies, and you die, that's more blood on my hands, and there will be no one else to blame except for myself," Jack stated with a quiet dignity.

Selmak stared in O'Neill's eyes, looking for something. Then he stepped back from O'Neill, and the hologram looked horrified.

"Jacob? Have I harmed you?"

And Selmak wept.


"WHAT?" Hammond spat. He was furious about the arrogance of Maybourne, but more annoyed at himself, because he should have seen this coming.

"He's not even dead yet, Maybourne," Samantha yelped. "His body isn't even cold."

"Forgive me for being blunt, but I wanted to make sure that you didn't make any arrangements for your father," Maybourne explained. "What happens was a few months ago when your father was dying, he made arrangements to donate his body to science. We'll be taking his body. I'll start making the arrangements."

"Over my dead body," Hammond said in a very dangerous tone of voice.

Maybourne shrugged his shoulders, "You know, in spite of what that mouthy hologram says, I do respect your father, Captain Carter, even in spite of our differences on that Japanese matter. I hope that you'll inform me of when the ceremony on Arlington will be held, as I'll want to be there to pay my respects."

George moved quickly, and prevented Samantha from decking Maybourne. Accidentally, he blocked Maybourne from her advances, and then George smiled at Maybourne.

"Permission to return to your quarters until such time as you're needed to collect the body is hereby granted. Go now, before I have you escorted," George growled.

Maybourne, not one to back down easily, stood on his toes to look over George's shoulders. He smiled at Samantha, and before he spoke, he was interrupted by Janet Frasier.

"We'll do the autopsy here, General. We have the equipment, we'll do it," Janet insisted.

"I'm afraid that's not acceptable," Maybourne insisted. "What with your… close…shall we say, intimate… relationship with the General, Doctor, I'm sure you'd understand why the NID wouldn't want you to do the autopsy."

Then Maybourne left quickly even as George prevented Janet from belting Maybourne. It was a good thing he was surrounded by all these hot-headed junior officers, as preventing them from slugging Maybourne had kept HIM from slugging Maybourne.

He turned to face Janet, who was fuchsia, and Sam, who was looking at her best friend in some confusion.

"You and my … father?" Sam questioned.

Janet nodded her head, and Sam smiled.

"I'm glad, Janet," Sam assured her and then the two ladies hugged each other tightly, while George pondered the situation in his head.

Jake? Janet? Knocking the Boots? Good God! When did that little relationship happen? During their wild cross-country adventure apparently, but George would have sworn that Jake was too busy having a breakdown to go a courtin'.


Janet Frasier took Jacob's hand in hers, and talked to him. Unfortunately, Jacob wasn't in any condition to answer. He wasn't brain dead yet, but he was Cheyne-Stokesing. God, Janet hated the sound of that type of respirations. Jake's breathing would start off deeply and slowly, and then increase into rapid, shallow respirations. Then he'd stop for a bit, and the bizarre pattern would begin anew when he gasped for breath.

"Hearing is the last thing that goes, Samantha," Janet reminded. "Talk to him. But I just want to tell him something first."

Janet held onto his hand tightly and bent over to Jake's ear.

"Thank you for last night," she whispered. "You were incredible."

She stood up, trying to ignore Hammond's questioning eyebrow that was doing a very credible impersonation of Mr. Spock's.

"I love you, Dad." Sam whispered.

Hammond had already said his last words to Jake, a barely heard mumble of words that ended with a quiet, "Yeee Haaaa, what a goddamn ride."

"Captain? Tell your father he can go now," George suggested. "Tell him that he'll meet up with your mom and my wife."

Samantha wiped her eyes, and she nearly broke down into sobs when George patted her shoulder.

"Dad… It's me… Sam…." She whispered. "You can…"

The door to the room opened with a bang, and Jack O'Neill stepped in. He was holding something in his hands, a wet, slippery something that barely moved.

"Jesus H. Christ!" Hammond roared. "Get out!"

"Take the mask off," O'Neill ordered. "Selmak's going back in. Janet, Selmak says you have to start bagging him when he's back inside Jake. Keep his heart going and keep him breathing, and Selmak's going to try and fix him."

"Selmak?" Janet questioned.

Hammond pulled the mask away from Jake's face, and he put his fingers into Jake's mouth to pry Jake's jaw apart. O'Neill put his hand over Jake's open mouth and carefully placed Selmak into Jake's mouth. The symbiote seemed dazed for a bit, and then it slowly oozed down Jake's throat.

"Fire in the hole!" O'Neill called out, trying to display a confidence he didn't possess.

"I thought Selmak was dying?" Hammond questioned, even as Janet began bagging Jake to help him breath.

"He is, but he's going to try and fix Jake," O'Neill explained. "It'll be his final act."


After an hour or so, Janet pulled General Hammond and Sam away from Jake's bedside.

"We need to talk," Janet explained. Her voice was tired and she looked like she had been dragged fifty feet. The circles under her eyes had additional circles. "Jacob's breathing has stabilized, and he's a little stronger than he was."

"What about Selmak?" Sam questioned.

"He's really weak; he's barely showing up on the scans that Martouf has run. Lantesh says it's absolutely amazing that Jake and Selmak are both alive, but it's no doubt to Selmak and Jacob's stubbornness. I want to put Jacob-Selmak on a vent. Right now they're spending all their energy on just breathing, and they're getting exhausted."

"How difficult will it be to get Jacob off the vent if something goes wrong?" Hammond questioned.

Janet rattled off different scenarios and George nodded his head once.

"Put him on it, and let's hope that the extra time will allow Selmak to fix him," Samantha agreed. "Besides, if he's on a vent, Maybourne can't get him."


One week later:

He was floating in darkness, and he was alone. Except he heard crooning.

Yes. Definitely crooning.

A couple trills, plus a warble and then the soft, comforting, unceasing crooning.

Flashes of memories, a veiled woman who hummed that melody.

HELLO? He thought. IS THERE SOMEONE IN HERE WITH ME?

The soft humming continued, but he thought that the voice sounded happier. Yes, there were a few more trills and then a run of notes, and then an all encompassing wave of overpowering tenderness and affection.

He was still floating in the darkness, and he felt increasingly tired. There was a name, he should know it….

SEL?


I'm wild again, beguiled again
A simpering, whimpering child again
Bewitched, bothered and bewildered - am i

Couldn't sleep and wouldn't sleep
When love came and told me, I shouldn't sleep
Bewitched, bothered and bewildered - am i

Lost my heart, but what of it
He is cold, I agree
He can laugh, but I love it
Although the laugh's on me

Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered

Jake was in full dress uniform, and he was dancing with a blonde woman who was slightly taller than he was. She had blue eyes as depthless as the unfathomable ocean, and she wasn't smiling. No, even though the two of them were ballroom dancing, twirling and swirling in a syncopated rhythm, the woman wasn't smiling.

No, she had tears in her eyes.

Flashes of memories, he had taken lessons with Annie, because Annie had insisted on it. But Jake wasn't dancing with Annie. He twirled her, and the woman spun out gracefully, her blonde hair swinging. Kay had always liked dancing… Mara had also.

Kay? Annie? Mara? He should know these names, but he couldn't think why he should know them.

The music changed, and he pulled her back to him. Jake looked into her blue eyes, and he shook his head.

"I know you, shouldn't I?" He questioned her.

She nodded once.

"Don't cry," Jake requested. "Please, don't cry. Just tell me what the problem is."

The woman stopped dancing, and she shook her head. She moved, as though to flee from him, and he refused to let her go. Jake held onto her right hand tightly, knowing that he was holding her too hard, but that he couldn't let her go, as she'd run.

"You're not running away, Sel," he protested. "You run, I'll find you. You leave, I'll track you down."

The woman was stronger than she looked, as she ripped her hand free from his. The clock started striking midnight, and she ran toward the steps. He was following her, and then she kicked off a shoe and she deliberately threw it at him.

The brat aimed perfectly, as she clocked him in the head with a spiky high heeled shoe.

"Was it this?" Jake snapped. "Sel-erella? I'm not gonna be your Prince Charming, Sel."


"The EEG says that your father's dreaming," Janet informed Samantha. "That's a good sign that his brain is functioning."

"But it's been a week, and he's still on the vent," Samantha protested.

"Selmak's still quite weak, and so is your father, but the Naquadrah-enhanced lymphoma seems to be growing smaller. His blood counts are better. The only thing I can counsel is patience, Samantha," Janet explained.

"Come on, Dad, you're not Sleeping Beauty, Janet's not going to wake you with a kiss," Sam told her father's still form, ignoring Janet's hiss of protest.

"Well, your father is no Prince Charming," Janet retorted.


I've sinned a lot, I'm mean a lot
But I'm like sweet seventeen a lot
Bewitched, bothered and bewildered - am i

I'll sing to him, each spring to him
And worship the trousers that cling to him
Bewitched, bothered and bewildered - am i

When he talks, he is seeking
Words to get, off his chest
Horizontally speaking, he's at his very best


Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered

Jake was lying in bed, and he wasn't alone. No, there was a blonde woman in his arms. He was stroking her long blonde hair, and she sighed when he kissed her on her forehead.

"Selmak?" He questioned, as he was beginning to make sense of the assorted mish-mash of dreams he was experiencing. "My memories are swiss-cheesed. I've got mine, and I've got ALL of yours now… and I'm dreaming bits of you and me."

Selmak nodded her head, and cuddled closer.

"You're back?" Jake questioned.

She nodded once.

"Why?

"Wanted to go to Disney," she explained.

Jake knew that he should be furious with her, pissed off that she ruined his perfectly planned death, and most importantly… he should be really furious that she had lied to him about the fact that there was another host for her.

"My God, Sel, we finally did it, didn't we?" He questioned.

"Yes," Selmak answered. "We've achieved a thorough blending."

Jake continued stroking her hair, and he kissed her again. Damn it, he was such a softie since he met with Selmak, as he was near tears. She was willing to die for him, and she had put her life on hold to save his life yet again.

"What now, dear? What now?" he questioned.

"I can go somnolent," Selmak explained. "Then in about a hundred or so years, I'll wake up and try to find a new host."

"Not acceptable," he said sternly, which earned a sad look from Selmak. "If I go to Disney, and get on Space Mountain, I want you screaming your fool head off along with me. Besides, you need to get a set of ears."

Selmak laughed, and then he laughed.

He felt better then, as he knew that everything was going to be alright.


Two weeks later –

Jake woke up, and he realized that he was restrained to a hospital bed, and there were tubes in all sorts of unpleasant places. There was someone sitting by his bedside, and he tried to focus on him.

Wasn't Sam.

Too much hair to be George.

Oh no… it wasn't

"DAD!" Jack shouted, before he jumped out his chair and began yelling down the hallway. "He's awake! Everybody…JAKE'S AWAKE!"

?Good God, Jacob Carter, if Jack O'Neill's your son, I think I'm going to log a protest somewhere. Where the hell is my poison pen?

SELMAK? You're BACK? It wasn't a dream after all? Those conversations I had with you? The ball room dancing?

?The closing on my new duplex fell through. So I had to move all my stuff back into your head. Do you mind?

Underneath that teasing tone of voice, Jake realized that Selmak was extremely worried. He had a mental image of a blonde hair woman looking at him intently, biting her lip nervously.

Memories fragments filled his mind, an argument with George. Vidrine had been here? Maybourne? Ball room dancing? A poker game where Selmak and he had been bluffing each other?

What happened? No flippant answers, Selmak. Everyone said that you didn't have a new host, but you did, didn't you? What happened to her? Did they find her a symbiote?

The blonde woman looked worried, and scuffed her feet in nervous apprehension.

Selmak? We're talking easier now.

Selmak gave him a dazzling smile, and then Jake realized the truth.

NO HOST? YOU LIED TO ME. IT WASN'T A BAD DREAM!

The little devious head snake that she was, artlessly filled her big blue eyes with tears, and began to sniff.

Cut the fake tears, Sel. It ain't gonna fly with me!

?I did it for your own good! You were unhappy?

Selmak then shared everything with him, including the surprising fact that O'Neill had been the one to convince Selmak that he was dying and how O'Neill had brought Selmak to Jake in the very nick of time.

O'Neill?

?Yes, O'Neill. He's mellowed a bit. After I bit him thirty seven times, he realized that I had a point, besides a sharp set of teeth.?

Selmak then made a sound akin to a Great White Shark attacking its prey, and Jake decided that he'd really have to watch what Selmak viewed on late night TV.

O'Neill?

?Yes?

O'Neill?

?YES! AMAZING AIN'T IT?

O'NEILL!

?Look Jake! You've got company, so I'm going to close my eyes now and let you visit with your friends. Love you Carter?

Sel, if I had woken up and found out the truth, I would have been so angry with you.

?But you would have known that I did it for you out of love, so you wouldn't be angry with me forever. Now, when you're done chatting with everyone, I want to know all about your hot date with JANET. She's been very bubbly lately. Did you get lucky? You must have – you're BLUSHING?

SELMAK! YOU KNOW PERFECTLY WELL WHAT HAPPENED AS YOU'VE BEEN RUMMAGING THROUGH MY MEMORIES!

?Am I going to be an auntie?

SELMAK!


Vexed again, perplexed again
Thank god, I can be oversexed again
Bewitched, bothered and bewildered - am i

Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered

It took a while for Jake and Selmak to get their strength back, but in time, Jake and Selmak had to return back to the Tok'Ra tunnels. He stopped by to see Janet before he left, and he gave her a tentative smile.

"Hello," he said.

"Hi," Janet answered. "Let's go into my office, shall we?"

Janet closed the door to her office quickly, and she sat on the edge of her desk.

"You're leaving," she sighed.

"Yes, I need to get back," Jake explained.

Awkwardness descended, like a gift from the Gods. Both wanting to say something, but neither one sure of what the other one would think. Then Janet asked to speak with Selmak. Selmak came to the fore, and smiled gently at Janet.

"You take good care of him," Janet ordered.

"I will," Selmak assured her. "We have to get back to the tunnels. I'm sure Ka and Xy have stolen all my blankets and pillows, and sold them to the highest bidder. I'll be spending the next fortnight tracking my stuff."

Janet laughed, even as Selmak sighed dramatically, and muttered, "Children!"

Then Janet leaned forward and kissed Selmak on the mouth. Selmak was a little surprised by Janet's boldness, but then Selmak kissed Janet back, ignoring Jake's mental growls of protest, as Selmak was busy kissing Janet as well as she could.

The two of them were still kissing when Selmak let Jake come to the forefront. Janet and Jake continued to kiss, even while Selmak began playing with Jake's blood chemistry.

Jake then stopped kissing Janet, and growled, "Selmak?"

Janet watched bemused, as Jake tried to talk with his symbiote.

"I keep getting a message that Sel's out right now, but to please leave a message and she'll get back to me," Jake groused. "Then she ruins it by laughing."

That thought caused Janet to laugh loudly. Then she smiled brightly at Jake.

"The reason why I kissed Selmak was not to make you jealous," Janet purred. "But I wanted to let you know that I understand that Selmak's part and parcel of who you are. You live as one, and you love as one. I want both of you to come back safe to me."

"I can't promise you anything," Jake protested.

"Did I ask?" Janet questioned softly. "I don't remember asking."

"I'll be back, as soon as I can," Jake promised.

The two of them kissed some more and then Jake broke apart from her.

"Selmak?" Janet questioned.

"Yes, she's suggesting that I seem a little weak and that you might want to perform a hands-on physical exam again," Jake sighed. "I'm not sure about that…"

"What, you're unsure about having sex with me with Selmak onboard?" Janet questioned evilly.

Jake nodded quickly.

"I'm ok with that, just don't have Selmak bring George into it again," Janet stated innocently. "Sleeping with two-two star Generals and an alien would be nerve-wracking for me."

"I'm retired," Jake protested.

They kissed some more and then Jake stopped.

"We've got to go, Selmak," he protested. "Stop protesting. God, it's like having a three year old in my head."

Janet laughed even as Jake sighed.

"Walk you to the Gateroom," she suggested.

"I'd like that, very much," he agreed.

Martouf and Lantesh were standing in the Gateroom, earnestly conversing with Samantha.

?What do you think of Marty and Lantesh and your daughter? Selmak questioned. ?I think Martouf is interested. ?

Sure enough, Martouf appeared stricken when he noticed that Sam's father was watching him closely. He flushed and then he smiled brightly.

?God, save me from the gleam? Selmak inserted.

Fortunately, SG1 was standing nearby so Jake could face them instead of the guilty looking Martouf.

"See you around," Jake said. "Thank you for everything, Daniel, Teal'c."

Daniel laughed and shook Jake's hand, and Teal'c gave Jacob an elegant nod of his head.

Jack cleared his throat, and gave Jake a meaningful shrug as if to say, "What you're not giving me any thanks?"

Jake took Jack's hand, and examined it. Selmak's bites had faded nicely into faint scars.

"Next time you want to be a smart ass, take a look at your hand and remember what Selmak does to smart asses."

Jack deflated almost immediately. Jake laughed, and George gave him a sour look.

"Selmak's being funny," Jake explained.

?AM NOT! LIAR?

"Jacob," George said softly.

"George," Jacob answered in the same tone of voice. "Thanks for putting up with me and Selmak. Appreciate all your help."

"Had to, Jacob," drawled one of Jacob's closest friends in the Universe.

"As no one else would put up with our shit," the two of them answered at the same time.

George turned and faced the control room. He gave Davis a head nod and then Davis opened the wormhole.

Then Jake hugged his daughter goodbye, assured her that he loved her and he tried not to get misty eyed when he realized that Sam was crying.

?All she ever wanted was your approval, Jake.?

"I'll be back soon," he promised. "I have to see if the Tok'Ra High Council will forgive me for being a pain in the ass."

Sam laughed, and said, "Hurry back, Janet's gonna miss you."

Jake then laughed and shook his head. Then he turned to face Martouf and Lantesh.

"Age before beauty," he said.

Martouf was staring at him in confusion, even as Selmak began giggling.

?It'll take him weeks to figure that one out! Tee hee. And he'll never be sure that he got the meaning right, but he'll be too embarassed to ask you! Hahahahahahah?

Then Jacob-Selmak stepped on the gate. Taking a deep breath, Jake then proceeded to walk to the wormhole, leaving his old life behind. Without cracking a smile, he realized that Martouf was still standing next to Samantha, trying to figure out what the Tau'ri Tok'Ra had met by THAT comment.

Love you Sel.

?Love you Carter.?

And then he stepped into his new life.

?Watch out Goa'uld! Jacob and Selmak have blended. We'll be kicking ass and taking names?

Ooo. you make me live
whatever this world can give to me
It's you, you're all I see
Ooo, you make me live now honey
Ooo, you make me live
You're the best friend
that I ever had
I've been with you such a long time
You're my sunshine
And I want you to know
That my feelings are true
I really love you
You're my best friend

You're my Best Friend - Queen