A Rose By Any Other Name

Spacegypsy1

Chapter Nine: The Telling of the Odyssey

Warning: spoilers for Unending

A/N: This story seems to never end. No beta, sorry for the errors, please feel free to note them if they need fixing.

~0o0o0o~

Pacing, Vala chewed at her lip. "I can't stand this! I'm her mother, I should be in there!"

"Thorn's with her." Daniel said as if to convince himself all was well.

"She's been in labor nearly twelve hours!" Vala went into Daniel's arms.

Patting her back, he kissed her temple. "I don't think that's bad, sweetheart." Peering over her head, he looked worriedly at the others.

"I'll see if I can check with Carolyn. But you know she'll let us know…" before he finished Cam looked up to see his wife coming towards them.

Jake and Danny Jackson jumped up, coming to stand behind Daniel and Vala. Their sister, Thea, hand clasped tightly to Ben Mitchell's, tugged him forward. Eli O'Neill, still in BDU's from a recent mission looked at his father in concern. Jack nodded, and with a hand on Sam's back, waited.

Ian and Drake Mitchell watched their mother's face expectantly. Carolyn Lam Mitchell look worried.

Mala, bandana around her forehead to hide the Hak'tyl symbol she proudly wore, stood with an arm around her mother's waist, between Ishta and her oldest brother, Bray. She felt like crying, but stood stoic, as her mother had trained her. One day she would take over as leader of the Hak'tyl. She must be brave.

Ishta leaned over to whisper to Mala. "A strong warrior without emotion is a foolish warrior, Mala. You're namesake knew that. You need not be holding back at such a time."

Teal'c remained at the back of the room, hands clasped behind his back, jaw twitching with the effort to control his emotions.

Carolyn took a deep breath. "She's in trouble. No other way to say it. But nothing we haven't experienced before."

Vala gasped, covering her mouth, tears building.

"The baby is breach, but luckily, labor has slowed. We're working to turn the baby; we'll monitor them both closely. This could be a very long night. I'll come out when I can or send someone out intermittently with news."

"Can I see her?" Vala begged.

"As soon as you dry those tears, and put a smile on your face. She needs reassurance. When you're ready hit the call button and someone will let you in. Two minutes. Then Daniel two minutes." Carolyn hugged her friend. "She'll be fine, Vala. I have every confidence in the team. We'll make this right." Letting Vala go, Carolyn smiled wanly. "I need to get back."

Danny, Jake and Thea rushed after the doctor. "Can I go in?" Thea asked first, then Danny echoed and finally, Jake asked quietly.

Carolyn shook her head sadly. "Not for a while. Maybe later."

Thea turned and ran to Mala and both young women began to cry and comfort each other.

Danny rubbed his face, then went and put an arm around the two girls. It wasn't long before Jake joined them. Then, one by one, Eli, Ian, Bray, Drake, and Ben.

Smiling as best she could, Sam hugged Vala, then Daniel, before walking away to stare out the window.

Vala pulled out Daniel's shirttail and began to pat her eyes. Then she fluffed her hair. "How do I look?"

"Beautiful as always." Daniel kissed her, then grabbing her shoulders he turned her quickly forward and nudged her along. He turned away so if she looked back she would not see the fear in his moist eyes.

Both Jack and Teal'c put an arm around each of Daniel's shoulders, and Cam stood in front of the trio.

"She's got the best damned doctor in the universe." Cam said with a little catch to his voice.

"I know." Daniel nodded, wiping at his eyes with a sleeve.

"Alright, you kids," Jack took a step back, pointing around the room at all their children. Then, as a second thought, pointed to each of the adults. "We're gonna stay calm. We are going to pray, chant, burn fake candles, do the Hak'tyl Hula if necessary."

"As soon as DanielJackson has his turn and we are all together I shall tell a story. An Odyssey story that I have never told anyone before."

Sam raised a brow. "THE Odyssey story?"

"It is time. I cannot change a future with the tale. Not now."

"I'm going for real coffee, as much as I can find. Don't start without me." Sam hurried down the corridor.

"She's gonna need some help." Cam took out after her.

"Yeah, lots of help." Eli nodded to the rest of SG-1, Danny, Ian and Bray, and the team followed after Cam.

~0o0o0o~

Having taken the furniture and rearranging it in a semi-circle the waiting room occupants sat on chairs and the floor around Teal'c who stood before them.

"I have waited many years to speak these words that I have held deep inside me, with much difficulty. Though I cannot impart all that transpired, I can tell you this…

"One morning, three months into our entrapment in the time dilation field upon the Odyssey, ColonelMitchell wandered into the mess hall looking somewhat stunned. The colonel did not take confinement well, which he has confessed repeatedly, thereby releasing my hold on that information. Generally, while confined on the ship, his face appeared strained."

Cam, who'd been leaning forward, sat back with a half laugh.

"He obviously had cut his incessant run throughout the ship quite short. Unless you were in the corridors, one rarely saw him before dinner.

I became curious and asked him to explain. Before he could speak, GeneralLandry came in, his watering can in his hand, and he too looked odd, as if puzzled. ColonelCarter joined us, having drifted in for no apparent reason. That was the way it went quite often as we had become so closely aligned.

For a moment no one spoke, GeneralLandry, ColonelCarter, and myself only stared at ColonelMitchell…as if we knew he had something to tell us.

We all sat around the table by the window that held the same stars as it had for many, many weeks.

The colonel, staring out the window, began to speak with awe in his voice. He had been running that morning, of course, and as he passed DanielJackson's quarters ValaMalDoran emerged, pulling her shirt over her head, quite disheveled and apparently, according to ColonelMitchell looking…and I am quoting the colonel, 'like she'd just been ravished'.

We were shocked, that I can assure you. Though on future discussions we all admitted it was not a complete surprise.

The two had left together the previous night after dinner and it appeared that they did not part until morning.

Before we could get deep into discussing this situation DanielJackson walked in. I saw the other three at the table attempt to act unaware. It was, as they say, a complete disaster. Quiet humorous also.

The man himself looked befuddled. Not by his companion's reaction, the man was oblivious to his surrounds. I am convinced that had he not been on this ship three months and the route to the mess hall deeply embedded in his subconscious, he would have traversed the corridors lost for the next fifty years.

Our friend joined us at the table and there the five of us sat quietly looking out that window. We must have remained so for ten minutes until ValaMalDoran bounded in the room beaming happily. As one, we all turned our heads toward her.

She greeted everyone with great cheer before turning to her supposed lover and with a softness none of us had ever witnessed, she wished him a good morning.

As one, our heads turned to DanielJackson. And that is when we knew for sure they had been...together. The look on his face as he quietly returned her greeting could only be described as happily-guilty."

Daniel put his arm around Vala and pulled her tight against him as Teal'c continued.

"ValaMalDoran expressed some concern that there was no food or drink upon the table, and boldly confessed she was ravenous from much exertion. The rest of us were once again shocked as DanielJackson stood and offered to bring her breakfast.

It was at this point ColonelMitchell commented, 'I told you so.'

For the next three weeks the couple tried to hide their involvement. It was quite amusing, actually, though both ColonelCarter and ColonelMitchell had inadvertently come upon them in a compromising position. ColonelMitchell finding them in the hanger bay and ColonelCarter discovering them in the Asgard data room. Both times they had jumped apart.

They had no idea that we were aware that ValaMalDoran came to DanielJackson's quarters each night, leaving very early in the morning thinking she escaped before ColonelMitchell's morning run past. ColonelMitchell had, out of courtesy, changed his route.

Then, one day, GeneralLandry came upon the two of them sitting quietly, alone, in the mess hall. Preparing a snack, the general took his seat at the head of the table and simply informed them that there was no reason to hide their liaison.

The general reported that both began to deny any relationship to which he told them he would take it as a favor if they moved in together so that ColonelMitchell would stop running by the general's quarters so early in the morning.

It was DanielJackson that agreed it would be best, confessing he would have come to the general soon with that exact request.

Later, when I entered the mess hall, ColonelCarter was hugging ValaMalDoran and ColonelMitchell was shaking DanielJackson's hand. The general looked quiet pleased with himself. I too felt happy for them.

Their relationship over the next fifty years is part of what kept us all sane. Their happiness was infectious and only grew through the years. There were times when their laughter, echoing through the corridors, saved us all from slipping into a void.

They lived together until the very end, never parting. I must confess that the thought of them going back, not remembering, was as hard for the rest of us, as I am sure it was for them. I held onto the hope they would rediscover their love and when they did I felt a great burden lift, and now completely disappear."

As Teal'c finished the group before him lifted their faces and stared behind him.

Teal'c turned to find his son, Thorn, holding a bundle and grinning. "It's a boy. Both are doing fine!"

Vala hurried towards the delivery room, stopping to take a quick peek at her grandson, then rushing away, Ishta right behind her.

Smiling at Daniel and Teal'c, Thorn bowed his head. "Come meet your grandson, Mel'Ro'nak. We decided to create a new Tau'ri/Jaffa name, therefore, we combined your father's names."

~END AGAIN – Temporary or otherwise.