The Stargate universe and all assosiated chareters were created by someone else who's name I can't be bothered to look up, and I presume that they own all the relevant rights and such. All I own is an over-active imagination.
Spoilers for season 2 and/or 3 (I've not decided when it's set just yet)
His Girl Friday
Part 1: Cosmic Castaways
Sheppard cursed under his breath as he put the Puddle Jumper back into a steep dive, heading back down through the upper atmosphere in a desperate bid to avoid the oncoming Wraith Cruiser. While the nimble little transport could have taken on the much bigger starship and stand an excellent chance of successfully shooting it down, it would revel their location to the Wraith, and that was something he wanted to avoid at all costs.
It was supposed to have been a milk-run; transport Dr Weir to a friendly planet for a ceremony that would finalise the trade agreement between the planets pacifist population and the Atlantis expiation. Fresh food for medical assistance, something they had negotiated a dozen times over. In fact, the mission had looked so dull that McKay, Teyla and Ronon had managed to beg their way out of going, leaving Sheppard to escort her with a pair of Marines, simply because the regulations demanded at least some kind of bodyguard.
The first sign that something was wrong had been the explosion that had incinerated the two Marines, along with several villagers. The once-heard-never-forgotten buzz of Wraith Darts filled the air as the village descended into chaos. It had been all he could do to grab Weir by the arm and physically drag her to the small grove of trees where he had landed the Jumper. Thankfully the foliage seemed to hide the pod from the Wraith and they ignored it. Sheppard had activated the cloak the moment they had enough power, then took off, much to his passengers protests, headed for the gate in orbit. That was when he found how truly screwed they were. It wasn't just a normal culling: the Wraith had come to stay, with a Hive leading a small convoy of what had to be supply and support ships along with an entire armada of Cruisers and countless Darts. The hostile ships filled the sky, cutting them off from the Stargate. Even if they could have gotten to it, dialling Atlantis would have been like sending the Wraith an engraved invite, letting them know that the city was still intact and open for business.
Sheppard knew that if they didn't check in or return within the next few hours, then Atlantis would dial in and try and make radio contact. All they needed to do was hide until then and arrange for the Daedalus to come pick them up somewhere in the outer system. In many way they were lucky; the binary system had four inhabitable planets, but only one with a human population, and only one Stargate. At least one of the other planets, the next in towards the systems primary, was within easy range for the Jumper, so they had a refuge to settle down on if the worst came to the worst. They had almost no information on the planet, other than what had been in the Ancient database; it was a small but dense planet, with a surface gravity of 0.89-G's and a humid climate. Under better circumstances, it looked like a perfect holiday destination, but it was still slap-bang in the middle of a Wraith infested system.
"We could have saved some of the villager." Weir protested as they continued to dive towards the planet, "You shouldn't have pulled me away like that."
"And what would you have done if I hadn't?" Sheppard asked, trying to concentrate their angle of decent: the last thing he wanted to do was leave a plasma trail that would have been as good as decloaking in front of the Hive and asking to be blown to smithereens.
Weir sat still for a moment, unable to come up with an answer that made any sense. She looked at the controls, trying to make sense of it all.
"So, what's the plan?" She asked.
"Try not to get killed until we can contact Atlantis." Sheppard explained, having to fight the controls harder than normal, "They can send the Daedalus to pick us up."
"There might be a problem with that." Weir bit her lower lip, "Caldwell was ordered back to Earth just before we left; some kind of emergency."
"What?" Sheppard looked round, the controls starting to visible shake in his hands, "And you never thought to tell me?"
"With all due respect, it never crossed my mind." Weir pointed at the red-lights that had started appear on the HUD, "Is that normal?"
"Truthfully, no." Sheppard pulled back as hard as he could, but the Jumper refused to respond, "I think that near-miss back when we were taking off mat not have been so much of a miss after all; she's not responding." he concentrated for a moment, bringing up the diagnostic subroutine, "The main engines are off-line, and I think I may have burnt out the back-ups."
"What's the good news?"
"That was the good news: the bad news is that we're going into some kind of slingshot manoeuvre, the sort of thing NASA uses to launch deep-space probes."
"Are you saying that we're going to be sent into deep space?"
"I don't think so." Sheppard concentrated again, bringing up the navigational system, "No, looks like we're going to head in-system. That's good."
"Good?" Weir snapped, "How is that 'good'?"
"Well, if I'm reading this correctly, then we're going to get caught in the gravity well of the second planet." Sheppard fought the controls, trying to keep the Jumper as stable as he could, "It's habitable, but uninhabited, so the Wraith might not bother with it."
"Is there a Stargate?"
"Then I fail to see the good side!"
"We'll be alive, unlike everyone down there once the Wraith have gotten done with them." The Jumper stopped shaking, heading out of the atmosphere and away from the Wraith ships, "Okay, this is it: Sir Isaac Newton is now in the driver's seat."
Sheppard sat hunched over a laptop they'd found while taking an inventory of their supplies, tapping away as quietly as he could so as not to wake Weir. They had agreed to take turns watching for any further problems, but so far it looked like it was only the propulsion systems that had been damaged: life support, artificial-gravity and the cloaking device were all thankfully operational. What he hadn't let on was the fact that he had been unable to get a proper response from the emergency landing systems. The diagnostic said that they were fully operational, but there was no way to test them before they reached the planet they were hurtling towards. Given that there was nothing they could do, he felt that it was perhaps best keep quiet about it, at least for the time being. Even with the Daedalus out of the picture, there was still a chance that Atlantis would be able to launch a rescue mission using one of the other Jumpers.
Putting the laptop down, he reached for the now cold cup of coffee perched on the controls and swallowed the bitter liquid in one mouthful: they had emergency rations to feed up to six people for a month, as well as two extensive medical kits and sundry other equipment. One thing they were lacking in was weapons. Aside from Sheppard's P90 and Beretta, they had no guns, only a pair of large survival knifes. While that was enough for most survival situations, they would be severally under-gunned should they run into the Wraith once they landed.
Putting the now empty coffee cup back down, he went back to work, trying to make sence of the data the laptop was getting out of the Jumpers on-board systems.
The planet was growing ever closer in the view port, soon reaching the point where they could make out the individual continents and islands that dotted its deep blue seas.
"Any idea where we're going to land?" Weir asked.
"Somewhere just outside the northern tropics, I think." Sheppard brought the navigational display back up, "But as long as it's dry land, I'm not that bothered."
"Can't we scout around? Try and find somewhere with fresh water and good cover?"
"Considering how much I had to push the backup's to stop us from crashing back there, we're pretty much going to land where inertia tells us to. As it is, this landing is going to get pretty interesting."
"'Oh my God, oh my God, we're going to die'?"
"And you didn't think to tell me this before?"
"Well, given that there's nothing either of us can do about it, I felt it was best not to upset you..."
"UPSET?" Weir screamed, "WHY ON EARTH WOULD I BE UPSET!"
"Elizabeth, you're not helping." Sheppard wrestled with the controls as they started to enter the outer atmosphere, "And I'm pretty sure I can land this thing in one piece."
The landing itself was a lot worse then Sheppard had hoped for; the emergency systems managed to keep the jumper on an even keel, while the inertial dampeners bled off most of their speed. In fact, everything was going well until they clipped the side of a mountain, ripping away one of the drive pods. Mortally wounded, the Jumpers rather simple minded computer put the last of its power into the inertial dampeners, doing its best to protect its occupants as it tumbled out of control. It first hit the ground on the slope of a low hill and bounced off, taking to the air again as it passed over a semi-tropical forest. When it came down again, it hit the trees hard, knocking them aside as it continued on its destructive path. Bouncing up one last time, the Jumper cleared the edge of the forest and landed in the middle of a meadow, kicking up a huge cloud of earth and rock as it ploughed across the landscape, before finally coming to rest at the edge of a small grove of trees. Smoke and venting gasses filled the air as the transports rear hatch fell to the ground with a resounding thud, instead of the slow, controlled decent it normally made.
Sheppard dragged the unconscious Weir out of the stricken Jumper and lay her carefully on the soft grass, before running back into the pod and grabbing both of the first-aid kits. The cut above her left eye was bleeding, but it didn't seem that deep, do he pressed a sterile dressing on it and taped it down. Her left arm was obviously broken, and he knew that if he didn't set it, there was the risk that it would heal and have to be re-broken later. Making sure he knew where the break was, he carefully pulled her arm and shoulder out of her jumpsuit. Placing one foot against her arm-pit, he pulled sharply, the two half's of the broken limb sliding back into place. The sudden flash of pain was enough to wake Weir, and she screamed, her head spinning when she tried to sit op.
"Whoa there, Elizabeth!" Sheppard did his best to hold her down, worried that she might hurt herself in her confused condition. He moved round until he was stilling behind her, her head resting on his lap, "You got banged up a little, but every thing's going to be okay." He held her as she tried to get her breathing back under control, her teeth clenched in pain, "Every thing's going to be okay."
To Be Continued...