Hey there! I just wanted to update you all on my progress. I am feeling much better than I was before. I had a few problems with the medication but I'm back on track - well, almost! I know I have yet to finish This Old Man - I haven't forgotten it, and I promise to finish it. Right now I'm not ready to tax my brain with the intricacies of that plot, so I'll leave it until I can get my head round it. Perhaps next month I'll give it a go as I will have some help here (thanks Mu) and she won't let me forget any of the details! LOL!

Anyway, in the meantime, I'm hoping you will enjoy this simple little story that has plagued my mind over the past months - I actually started it at Christmas but never got around to finishing it. Not a lot of plot but it will get my brain thinking again with the exercise!

PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE?

By LetitiaRichards

Category: Angst; Drama; Hurt/Comfort; Smarm; UST.

Rating: General

Season: 5

Spoilers: In the Line of Duty, The Other Side, Divide & Conquer, Beneath the Surface, 2001

Summary: Life is full of surprises: some we can take in our stride, yet others are much harder to bear.

Disclaimer: I don't own Stargate SG-1. Shame, but there it is. Just borrowing these wonderful characters for a little while. No copyright infringements intended.

Past, Present and Future?

By LetitiaRichards.

Chapter 1 – "I need to speak to you in private sir."

Major General George Hammond flipped open the cover of yet another report and automatically noted the name of the person responsible for its contents. Major Greer, commanding officer of Sg-5. Without looking further into the carefully typed information, the details of the mission brief came to him in a flash. PZX3 489, a tropical planet with high readings of Naquadah. SG-1, the SGC's foremost team, had already established, during a 'meet 'n greet',that the natives were friendly and ready to negotiate.

He let the folder drop onto the highly polished and orderly desk. Slumping back in his chair, his fingers steepled against his chin as he recalled Colonel Jack O'Neill's succinct analogy of how their latest mission had gone... 'We went, we saw, we made friends,' he explained with a spread of his arms. 'It was just what the doctor ordered General. It was a sweet little paradise with the natives falling over themselves in the rush to please us!'

Hammond smiled inwardly as he remembered the relaxed posture and the cocky grin on his 2IC's face as he strolled languidly down the ramp away from the newly idle Stargate. He had to hand it to Jack; he could charm the socks off almost anyone with that deceptively boyish outlook of his, despite the grey hair; except maybe the Goa'uld, whom he suspected, Jack deliberately enjoyed rubbing up the wrong way. Most of the time he'd pulled it off, but on occasions, too numerous for the General's peace of mind, Jack had paid dearly for his notorious potty mouth.

Shaking his thoughts of Jack O'Neill from his mind with one last hope that the current mission Jack and his premier team were on would fare well, he turned his thoughts back to Major Greer's report.

Some twenty minutes later the General reached for the fresh cup of coffee that was sitting quietly steaming away on a coaster at his elbow, when the alarms resounded throughout the base. Forgetting the coffee and the reports, he shot up from his chair and hurried, as much as his bulk would allow, down the metal stairs to the control room below.

Arriving slightly breathless, he was in time to see the wormhole establish and he turned to the technician behind the console.

"Do we have a code Sergeant?" he demanded.

"Not yet sir..." then a fraction of a second later, "Coming through now sir." Davis paused for a tense moment before relaxing slightly. "It's SG-1 sir."

"Open the Iris!" Hammond barked, turning on his heels and heading down to the gate-room to greet his slightly overdue team.

Almost as soon as he entered the vast, cavernous gate-room, a solitary figure stumbled through the event horizon, and corrected her balance from the dizzying ride home. Hammond's eyes zeroed in on the active gate waiting for the rest of the four-man team to follow. Jack O'Neill, Dr. Jackson and Teal'c had yet to come through.

He was left feeling breathless when the wormhole snapped off, leaving the room in silence except for the harsh breathing of the hunched figure as they tried to regain their breath. Hammond's gut clenched in anxiety as he made his way over to Major Carter, reaching out to lightly touch her heaving shoulder.

"Major Carter?"

Samantha Carter gulped down another deep breath to calm herself and straightened at the General's touch.

"What happened to Colonel O'Neill, Dr. Jackson and Teal'c? Where are they?"

Sam, as she was known by all her friends, looked up into concerned grey eyes and smiled reassuringly.

"I need to speak to you in private sir!" she answered, still gasping slightly in her rush to get back to the Stargate on the planet she'd just stepped off of.

Hammond nodded, acknowledging that something was wrong, but also the need for 'eyes only'. Without another word, he led the way up to his office and shut the door behind the tall, blonde Major, inviting her to sit and catch her breath before she filled him in on why the rest of the team was missing.

"First, let me assure you sir, that Daniel and Teal'c are fine sir," she began.

"And Colonel O'Neill?" Hammond lowered himself into his chair, and knew without a doubt that he wasn't going to like where this conversation was going.

She shook her head, wondering how to explain how things had changed back on that planet.

"As far as we can tell sir, he's okay. I wasn't there when it happened but Daniel saw everything, though he was prevented from helping the Colonel until it was too late. Colonel O'Neill was unconscious when I left sir, but his pulse was okay, if a little fast. There's no sign of any external injuries, so on the whole I would say he was fine."

"If the Colonel is injured in any way why didn't you bring him straight back here?" Hammond puzzled, not fully understanding the problem at all.

"We were all agreed that the fewer people that knew about this the better General. They were ready to make their way back to the Stargate just as soon as the Colonel woke up sir."

"I'm not sure I follow you Major. So what exactly is wrong with Colonel O'Neill? He's not been compromised has he?" It was Hammond's worst nightmare that one of his teams, though if it was this team it would be even more devastating, ended up being taken over by their enemy one day. It was a wonder that they'd avoided that scenario so far. The nearest they had gotten to that had been when Major Carter had been taken over by what they took to be a Goa'uld, but was in fact a Tok'ra, luckily for them and the Earth.

"No sir, he's definitely not a Goa'uld. I'm sure Daniel can explain it better than I can sir, but for now... well; let's just say that everything will be made clear as soon as they get back sir. We need to get the Colonel to the infirmary for Dr. Fraiser to examine him but I think for his own peace of mind, he needs the utmost privacy for now sir, until we can figure out what can be done to correct his problem."

Hammond felt he was floundering, still in the dark about what was going on, but one thing he could do was to trust his premier team. And if Major Carter was sure about this then he would make it happen.

"All right Major. If you are so sure about this, I'll have the hallways cleared of all unnecessary personnel."

Sam chewed on her lip. She'd prefer it if there wasn't anyone around to see the Colonel's return, but she understood Hammond's dilemma. She nodded.

"Yes sir. Permission to open a wormhole to PX34 259 and give the rest of the team the all clear to come home?" she asked, standing now, ready to make her way down to the control room.

"Granted Major."

Sam hurried away, followed by a very intrigued General Hammond. He made an announcement over the tannoy system and then cleared the gate-room below in anticipation for the return of SG-1. He dismissed the gate technicians from the control room, except for one of his trusted men, and nodded to Sam. She ordered the Sergeant to start the dialling sequence and within minutes the gate had 'kawooshed' into existence.

"SG-1 niner, come in!"

Several seconds later she received an acknowledgement.

"Sam?" came the breathless reply. It sounded as if they were on the move judging by Daniel's panted response.

"Yes Daniel. How's the Colonel?"

"Um...let's just say he's not his usual self," Daniel responded dryly between gasps.

"He's awake?"

"Yeah, but now he doesn't remember anything..." he sighed, then added the cruncher. "...including us."

OoOoOoOoO

12 hours earlier on PX34 259

Colonel Jack O'Neill stumbled out of the wormhole desperately trying to keep his balance. It wouldn't look so 'cool' if he lost his footing and fell on his ass in front of his team. He managed it after several staggering steps, and thanking his lucky stars he turned his attention to the two more unfortunate members of his team that had preceded him.

Dr. Daniel Jackson, their resident archaeologist and linguistics expert, was pushing himself up onto his knees, spitting dirt from his puckered lips from where he had given in to gravity and ended up falling flat on his face in the mire. Jack grinned broadly, offering his best friend a helping hand.

"Need a hand Danny?" Jack drawled, the customary lop-sided smirk on his face meant he was highly amused.

"Don't!" warned Daniel wagging a finger, just daring Jack to take it any further. He was so not in the mood for Jack's somewhat childish wit. He swore the man behaved like his shoe size rather than his age at times.

Daniel glared up at his leader with resignation knowing that in spite of his warning, Jack wouldn't let him forget that little tumble for a long, long time. Reluctantly he slipped his hand into Jack's and was pulled effortlessly to his feet. He refrained from speaking any further because he really needed a few sips of water to rinse the dirt from his mouth.

Jack decided he could wait for the right time to start ribbing his younger friend and moved away, checking out the area as always. Alert, yet relaxed and seemingly disinterested. The others knew this ploy, having seen it employed on many occasion; the man was like a tiger, coiled, ready for action should the need arise.

"You okay Carter?" Jack asked, grinning widely.

"I'm fine sir!" she grimaced knowing that she was going to have one hell of a bruise on her derrière by the end of the day.

Sam had landed on her butt, and was even now brushing off the dirt as she took up a defensive position behind her CO, thankful he hadn't teased her as he'd tried to with Daniel. She glanced back at the last member of the team as he exited the wormhole behind them. She smiled in response to Teal'c's slight dip of his head as he joined the rest of the team, though she couldn't help wondering why it was he never tumbled to the ground through the gate while they did.

Jack relaxed the grip on his weapon and let it dangle loosely from its strap round his neck, though not relinquishing his hold on it completely. The tall, muscular yet lean, grey haired officer would still be ready to fire the automatic weapon at a moment's notice. He stood at the top of the steps of the stone dais and surveyed the area. Knowing his team as well as he did, he knew he could rely on them to be ready to move out as soon as he gave the word.

"So, Daniel, which way to this...er...whatever it is?"

"Temple Jack. I think it's some sort of temple, but until I can get a closer loo..."

"Okay folks, let's move out. Carter,take point. Teal'c watch our sixes. Daniel you're with me."

Without another word Jack took off behind Sam leaving Daniel still gaping like a stranded fish. Jack was his best friend. He'd never had a real friend, and certainly never anyone like Jack O'Neill. There wasn't a thing Jack wouldn't do for him. Yet, why was it that he sometimes got the urge to strangle the, oft times, infuriating older man? Frustration warred with resignation and anger but as always he gave in to the overwhelming feelings of submission. Jack was a good friend and was an exceptional officer, despite his shortcomings where patience was concerned. Yeah, he guessed he could live with that in the name of true friendship.

"Daniel Jackson, are you unwell?"

Teal'c's deep rumbling voice pulled him from his thoughts and brought him back to 'earth' with a bump. He felt the tension in his body drain away and unclenched his fists even as his eyes' popped open, never having recalled closing them in the first place.

"Uh...I'm fine thanks Teal'c. Just..."

"Daniel!" Jack's strident voice called to him from fifty yards away, a slight intimation of sarcasm, amusement and impatience filling it. "You with us?"

Daniel rolled his eyes with a sigh, glancing up at his Jaffa friend. There was just a hint of an understanding smile on those thick dark lips.

Daniel acknowledged the unspoken commiseration with a nod and another sigh then turned, walking towards his friend.

"Coming Jack!" he grated out. Just for once he would like to finish what to him was a necessary explanation without Jack cutting him off mid-stream.

TBC