The worst kind of torture.

Thanks to my beta, the wonderful Kodiak. All mistakes are my own.

The first blow, Sheppard had expected. When the Torellians had asked him where he was from, Sheppard had honestly replied from a galaxy far, far away. It hadn't amused his hostile interrogators and the blow to his face with the butt of his own P90 wasn't a shock, as painful as it was.

The next hit was just as expected. When the chief grunt had held up Sheppard's GDO and asked what it was for, and Sheppard had replied that he really couldn't remember, but why didn't Goldilocks shove it up his ass to see if it did anything for him, he knew the blow to come was a forgone conclusion. He'd grunted when he'd felt the impact, and inwardly grimaced as he heard the crack of a rib. Sheppard knew Beckett would be delighted that he'd managed to damage his ribs – again.

The third blow had taken Sheppard's breath away. Cyclops, as Sheppard had named the one-eyed beefy goon, had walked behind the colonel and demanded to know 'the 'gate address from where you came'. Sheppard had replied that he unfortunately couldn't remember, owing to the fact that the last blow to his head had destroyed vital brain cells, which had held that information. When Cyclops rammed the butt of the gun into his left kidney, Sheppard had collapsed to the cold, stone floor, desperately trying not to puke.

Sheppard had then been hauled to his feet and held upright by two guards, as he fought the nausea.

Cyclops had circled Sheppard again, and asked how many others had exited the 'gate with him. Sheppard had replied that there were no others, just him. When Cyclops had laughed, explaining that he'd seen at least three others with Sheppard, the colonel had grinned, asking the one-eyed man if perhaps he'd had a blow to the head himself, and was seeing triple. Another blow to Sheppard's left kidney had taken his breath away a second time, and as he had struggled to swallow bile that rose to the back of his throat, he'd collapsed again, his knees suddenly buckling.

Two of Cyclops' men had next unceremoniously hauled the doubled over Sheppard to his feet again, holding him upright more firmly as his knees had continued to give out. Cyclops had then signalled his two henchmen to sit Sheppard down in a chair in the centre of the dark room.

Which brought Sheppard to his current situation.

"What is your name?" Cyclops asked, venom in his voice.

Sheppard smiled sweetly. "Sorry, can't tell you that. Though you're welcome to call me anything you like. Except Kavanagh – that's just wrong on so many levels."

Cyclops signalled to the henchman on the left, who pulled Sheppard's head back by his hair.

"Hey! Watch the hair. You have no idea how long it takes me to get it to look like that!" Sheppard quipped.

Cyclops stood directly in front of Sheppard's upturned face, sneering, the Torellian's stained, chipped teeth showing.

"I want to know the name of the planet you come from," Cyclops hissed in Sheppard's face.

Sheppard smiled brightly at his interrogator. "Endor," he replied seriously.

Cyclops studied Sheppard's face, as if to judge if the answer was finally an honest one. "Never heard of it," he growled, before whacking Sheppard across the mouth, splitting his lip, and yanking Sheppard's head free from the grip of the goon holding him.

Sheppard groaned, cocked his head, and spat a mouthful of blood on to the floor.

"Really? That's a shame. I'm sure you'd love the Ewok's. Nice furry little things, great to have on your side in a battle against evil. But then again, they obviously wouldn't be on your side, so perhaps not," Sheppard mused. That earned him another blow, this time to his left temple. Sheppard winced as he heard the skin split and felt the warm trickle of blood running down the side of his face.

"You really think you're clever, don't you?" Cyclops hissed. "You won't feel so smug when you're screaming in agony begging me to ask you another question," he warned.

Sheppard grinned. "Not going to happen. Seriously, you need to work on your torture techniques. This is all a bit of a cliché. If I didn't know better, I'd think you'd been watching too many gangster movies," he laughed.

Cyclops gestured to henchman number one. "Break the fingers on his left hand."

"Oh yeah, too many gangster movies," Sheppard muttered to himself.

Sheppard gulped, and gritted his teeth, trying to resist as the goon grabbed hold of his left hand, and forced his clenched fist open, before taking hold of the index finger of the hand and yanking it upwards forcefully. Sheppard grunted as he heard an audible snap, the joint of the finger obviously dislocating from the violent movement forced upon it. Sheppard swallowed as he saw the finger sticking up at a right angle to his hand. The other three fingers snapping earned Cyclops small cries from the colonel. Still Sheppard sat defiantly, panting as he tried to recover from the agony he felt from his abused digits.

Cyclops' anger and frustration from getting little reaction from his prisoner was evident now. "Do the same to the fingers on his right hand," he shouted.

The pain was excruciating, and one by one, Sheppard's fingers snapped as they were yanked upwards. He cried out again, struggling against the nausea that threatened to overwhelm him, yet determined not to give Cyclops the satisfaction of seeing him vomit.

Dizzy and exhausted, Sheppard closed his eyes, opening them quickly when he heard the clunk of the latch to the door as it moved open. Another Torellian entered the room, and whispered something in Cyclops' ear.

Cyclops grunted, and turned to Sheppard. "I have things to do. Don't get too comfortable. I haven't finished with you yet," he warned.

"Can't wait for more. Though I hope you'll be a little more inventive next time," Sheppard quipped in between pants from the burning agony. Cliché it might be, but effective, though Sheppard would be damned if he'd let it show.

Cyclops turned to his two henchmen. "Return him to his cell," he ordered, annoyance evident in his gruff voice.

Sheppard groaned as he was thrust into the dark, damp cell he had been imprisoned in earlier. Managing to stay on his feet, and smile at the guards, as soon as the door was bolted shut, he sank to his knees, pulling his mangled hands in close to his chest, finally giving in to the agonising pain he'd been forced to endure.

After he'd recovered enough to move, Sheppard slowly climbed to his feet, shuffling till he could lean his back against the cool wall of the cell, his bruised flank eased by the cold penetrating his flimsy sweaty black t-shirt. Lowering himself carefully to sit down, Sheppard looked at his hands, wincing as he saw the dislocated fingers, swollen and purple, throbbing mercilessly in time with his pulse.

"Okay," he said to himself, "I know this is going to hurt like hell."

He lifted his right hand, and carefully turned his hand over, so the palm was facing up, and without hesitating, rammed the fingers, which were still at right angles to his hand, down into the hard ground. Sheppard cried out in agony as the fingers snapped back to their correct positions, and instinctively thrust his hand under his left armpit, rocking back and forward, panting as he tried to quell the pain.

Taking his hand out a few minutes later, he studied the swollen fingers, now grotesque in appearance, and groaned.

"Okay, four down, four to go," he muttered, summoning every ounce of courage he had left.

Sheppard repeated the process, this time only succeeding in correcting three of his fingers from their awkward angles.

"Shit, shit, shit," he chanted, as he, again rocked back and forwards.

"All right. I can do this," he assured himself, as he rammed the disobedient digit into the ground a second time. This time it snapped back into place, though Sheppard couldn't help but cry out.

Sheppard sat rocking, his hands protectively tucked under his arms, for a few minutes, as the pain in his hands died down to a fierce throb. He took stock of his other injuries, groaning at the pounding present in his head, and the dull ache of the deep bruising to his left side. Although in pain, Sheppard knew his injuries weren't life threatening, but he also knew there would be more to come. The longer the torture went on, the weaker he'd become, and the more likely he'd be to blab. Sheppard knew it was impossible not to break in the end, and just hoped he'd either die quickly, or be rescued. He preferred the latter to the former.

Suddenly feeling nauseous, blood rushing in his ears, Sheppard rolled onto his side, moaning, and as darkness approached him, he prayed his team had made it to the 'gate, and weren't suffering the same fate he was.