Blood Through Water

Prompt: #015. Fear

Notes: Written for 100 women.

Vala's heart pounded against her chest frantically as she fled through the town as fast as she possibly could. Her breathing was ragged and her bare feet were numb with pain, but she refused to stop. She couldn't stop.

Not now. Not until she was far, far away.

She veered down another cobble-stoned street, passed five identical cottages that looked like they had seen better days and took a sharp turn to her left as she heard the footsteps behind her quicken. The moment she turned, she knew it was a big mistake and even as she considered going back, she knew in her heart that it was too late.

If she went back, she would surely be caught. She continued on.

Before her, there was nothing but water, deep and swirling depths flowing down the moat that surrounded the town. A drawbridge overpassed the moat further up and had the guards been swapping over then, Vala would have chanced it and attempted to cross at the bridge while their defences were down.

She had learned earlier that her usual tricks were useless to her and that seducing the guards wouldn't work, so it was a 'jump into the moat' or die situation. She wasn't ready to die.

She jumped.

Chills wracked her body immediately and her clothes fell heavy on her body, weighing her down. There was no time to discard them, so she struggled forwards instead, every stroke requiring more strength than she felt she could muster.

A mouthful of water slowed her then for a moment and she found herself being pulled down, but she fought it. She fought the voice in her head that said she couldn't do it and the shouts of protest behind her and pushed on.

She could do this!

There was a splash behind her. Without looking back she knew who it was. She struggled some more as her dress tangled around her legs.

"Vala!"

She kept going, ignoring the voice, and almost choked on another mouthful of dirty grey liquid. She spat it out distastefully and kept going. She could do this!

"Vala!"

She could do this! She could!

"Vala!"

Shore! She finally made it to the other side and even as jagged bits of rock dug into her, she sighed in relief. She had made it!

Pulling herself out, her clothes slopped against her, outlining her figure. Had she been in any other situation, perhaps with an audience, she would have used that to her advantage. As the circumstance stated otherwise, she did not.

She chanced a look back at her pursuers and smirked. They couldn't swim and had only managed to get a quarter of the way in. She had won.

"Vala!"

Just as she was about to throw an insult their way before she went on her way, she heard the voice again and a tugging at her mind. Her eyelids fluttered slightly. She closed them, testing.

"Vala!"

She swallowed a few times and tasted blood.

"Vala!"

Her eyes jolted open then and reality hit her. She could still taste blood, but she was lying on her back in a desert. Faces blurred around her. Daniel. Cameron. Sam. Teal'c. Daniel.

"Daniel." Her voice was a mere whisper but it was something.

As one, Daniel and the others sighed in relief. "We thought we'd lost you," Daniel finally told her, pulling her into a sitting position. Vala blinked a few times as he wrapped his arms around her possessively.

"I'm right here," she forced out, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.

Daniel nodded. "Yes, you are."