Command Decisions

Rated: PG-13

Category: Whump, Angst, Team, Some Very Mild JS and Mild DanJan References, J/T Friendship.

Season: Five-ish.

Spoilers: A Matter of Time, Absolute Power, FIAD, Cold Lazarus, Fire and Water, In The Line of Duty, Point of View, Scorched Earth.

Summary: SG-1 Loses Samantha Carter, And In The Process Teal'c Has To Make A Decision That Could Cost The Team Much More.

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CHAPTER ONE

Teal'c had commanded an army of Jaffa for almost longer than Jack O'Neill had been alive. He knew about command decisions. He knew about acceptable risk and acceptable losses.

He knew that sometimes people had to pay the ultimate price in battle, and he knew that those who died in war were not the ones who paid that price.

And he knew that now was one of those times.

Teal'c had accepted the command of Colonel Jack O'Neill because he respected him as a fellow warrior. He knew the Tau'ri was an admirable tactician and leader.

Teal'c would have followed Jack O'Neill to the ends of the universe and back, but as a former fellow leader of men, Teal'c also knew that O'Neill was indeed flawed. He knew that leaders were no less human than those they led, and he knew that sometimes the judgment of even the most professional and distanced officer was clouded by personal beliefs or feelings.

And he knew that now was one of those times.

Despite his loyalty to O'Neill and his command, Teal'c knew that his friend was not fit to make decisions now. While Teal'c abhorred any form of disloyalty in principle, he knew that sometimes circumstances made a seemingly traitorous act the only honorable thing to do. The universe was not a black and white place, but was composed of various shades of grey.

Teal'c's mind was made up and his decision finalized in a fraction of a second.

There was only one option available to him right now that made any sense at all.

The big Jaffa removed his zat from its holster.

He aimed and fired, as four simple words left his mouth.

"I am sorry, O'Neill."

When Jack fell, Teal'c caught him deftly and heaved him into a fireman's carry over his broad shoulders with little effort.

Then he ran.

As fast as his legs could carry him, Teal'c ran.

While rocks tumbled down all around him, and the ground shook with what seemed a barely controlled fury, he ran.

Dust rained down from the air surrounding him, and Teal'c could barely breathe. He could hardly see two feet in front of him, but still he ran.

Away from the carnage behind him.

Away from the rubble stained with traces of Jack's blood.

Away from the lifeless body of Samantha Carter.