Aliens in the City
Disclaimer: No, they're not mine - at least not in real life.
A/N: Well, here it is the epilogue. It's been a long and crazy ride but we're finally here - the end of Aliens!!! I gotta tell you, sometimes I didn't think we'd make it. This story has had a few 'arcs' but they all came together in the end, didn't they? I hope they did; I tried my best to tie up all the lose ends. Although at times, it seemed like I had written more ends that I knew. Still, I finally finished it and I'm proud of it - as proud as I am of Men. They were both sort of experiments since I'd never tried anything like it before; well, Te Amare was pretty big too but I think these two were more thought out than that one. And now that Aliens is done, I'm crazy enough that I'm planning on starting another adventure. I'll be writing the sequel to Aliens - working title: Squints in Space. I'll be reworking an already existing fic of mine: SG1 in Atlantis, which was set in the same universe as Te Amare and I will now bring it into step with the crossover world. So, I'll have the cast of three shows to work with but that's not the new adventure I'll be trying. What I want to do is write two versions, one directed at each show's audience and posted it at each fandom. So, don't expect regular, fast posting - but you should be used to that, right? I'm not sure how it's going to work out but I do have about 10 chapters of SG1 in Atlantis that I just have to re-work and add the Bones scenes. The other problem and the reason why I never finished writing SG1 in Atlantis is that I didn't really have a plot. I just wanted to see SG1 in the city of the ancients but once I got them there and set somethings up, I ran into a wall. So, if any of you guys have any plots you'd like to see, feel free to tell me. Maybe I can work it into the story and finally come up with a middle and an ending! Well, I'll stop now or this A/N will be longer than the epilogue. I hope you enjoy this as much as you enjoyed the rest of the fic. I want to thank everyone for reading and coming along for the ride. Special thanks to pup for all her help betaing and brain-storming and to Kerrie and Mendenbar for reviewing almost if not every chapter and for all the encouraging words - you guys really make writing more fun! Thanks!!!
Booth stood up and walked towards the closed office door after the secretary told him to 'go on in'. Though it wasn't the first time that Booth had been to this particular office, he was always surprised by it, always a little taken aback by it. He felt almost as if he was walking into the principal's office and since Booth was an Army Major and the man he was going in to see was an Air Force Major General that was a surprisingly accurate and somewhat disturbing analogy. Of course, the General had far more control over Booth than a principal had ever even dream of having; which was only fair since Booth had voluntarily joined the Army but going to High School hadn't really been voluntary.
"Booth," Jack said, getting up to greet him with his hand held out.
"General," Booth replied, shaking the older man's hand.
"How are you?" Jack asked as he walked back to his chair.
"Much better, thank you," Booth said and sat down with a sigh and set the cane every one insisted he use next to him. This was the first time he'd been out by himself since he'd been shot almost three months ago, as Brennan hadn't really been willing to let him out of her sight before then. It was also the first time he'd been anywhere but the rehab center and the walk from the parking lot to the General's office, which was considerably longer than the walk to the center, had taken more out of him that he'd care to admit – even to himself.
"Janet tells me that she's signing you off for light duty in two weeks if you keep progressing as you have so far," Jack commented.
"Yes," Booth nodded. "Finally," he added with a rueful grin. He'd been restricted to bed rest for eight weeks - two in the SG1 infirmary and six at home. Brennan, who had taken six weeks off work and had only gone back part time since then, had kept a more than close eye on him and had not allowed him to do anything but lie in bed and walk, very slowly, to the bathroom and, later on, into the living room. Though his recuperation had been free of any setbacks, Janet had opted on the side of caution and kept him on bed rest for the full six weeks so that he had only started his rehab two weeks ago.
"I know how you feel," Jack agreed with a heartfelt sigh, which reminded Booth of what Brennan had told him the night before.
"How are you feeling, sir?" Booth asked, with concern in his eyes.
"Me?" Jack asked, raising his eyebrows. "I'm fine. Why do you ask?"
"Well," Booth said, shifting in discomfort. Neither he nor the General were men given to talk about private matters with strangers and even though they'd had a couple of very private conversations already, both had been initiated by the older man, never by Booth himself. "Bones told me about the . . . incident."
"You mean about how I passed out a couple of days ago," Jack elaborated with a roll of his eyes.
"Yeah," Booth nodded. "Are you okay?" he pressed, his concern a little bit more evident than before.
"Yes, I am," Jack said decisively. "It was nothing really," he added, waving the matter aside. "I take it my lovely wife's the source of your information."
"Yes," Booth answered. "Colonel Carter told Bones about it last night."
"Those two have gotten really close lately, haven't they?" Jack asked, trying to change the subject.
"Uh huh," Booth agreed. Brennan and the Colonel had always gotten along very well but had grown even closer since Booth's shooting. It seems that that unfortunate event had served to deepen their bond. "Guess they have a lot in common."
"I guess they do," Jack replied.
Booth hesitated for a moment, wondering whether he should continue to push the issue of the General's health. He was fairly certain the other man would not appreciate it and would not be very forthcoming but Booth was concerned. According to Brennan, the Colonel and the rest of SG1 were very worried, which was something Booth completely understood. The General was a strong man; one that, despite his age, was as fit as a man in his prime. In the ten plus years that SG1 have known him, the only times he'd been laid up had been because of injuries in the field; he'd never really been sick. He wasn't the type to just collapse for no apparent reason. Given that history, it was more than reasonable that they were all, as Vala had put it, freaking out.
Jack noticed the Major's hesitance and with a sigh, he decided he might as well address the issue head on so they then could move on.
"I'm fine, Major," Jack repeated. "It was probably exhaustion and stress; this whole thing with Ba'al has had me pretty stressed and working over time," he admitted. "But I'm fine . . . I'll be fine."
"Yes, sir," Booth nodded. He knew that was as much as the other man would say on the subject; so it would have to be good enough.
"But that is sort of the reason I wanted to see you today," Jack added.
"Sir?" Booth asked, not understanding.
"Well, even though I know I'm perfectly fine, my lovely wife doesn't share that belief," Jack rolled his eyes. "And somehow she, along with Janet, convinced the President that I need a vacation. Which is an idea I would normally be all for but there are still some loose ends with the Ba'al situation that need . . ." he trailed off and shook his head with a sigh. "I guess Davis can take care of it. He'll have to because starting tomorrow I'm on leave. Me and the Mrs. are leaving for Colorado Springs tomorrow afternoon but I wanted to talk to you before I left because I have a mission for you."
"A mission, sir?" Booth asked eagerly as he sat forward on the chair.
"Yes," Jack nodded.
"Ah, sir, I'd love to go on a mission," Booth forced himself to say as he thought what Brennan and Dr. Frazier would say about it. "But Dr. Frazier won't clear me for active duty for another . . . who knows how many more weeks," he said with a frustrated frown.
"I know that," Jack said airily. "This mission won't be physically taxing at all. In fact, it'll take you three weeks to get where you need to go."
"Three weeks?" Booth asked. "Where on Earth would you be sending me that would take . . ." he trailed off when he noticed the look on Jack's eyes. His own eyes widened as he realized what the other man meant. "I wouldn't be going anywhere on Earth, would I?"
"Nope, you wouldn't," Jack grinned as he leaned back on his chair and crossed his fingers on top of his stomach.
"Where would I be going?" Booth asked, more than a little intrigued. "And why would it take three weeks to get there? Gate travel is almost instantaneous."
"Yes it is but you won't be gating there," Jack was enjoying this little game.
"Because we don't have enough power for regular Gate travel there," another cryptic answer that did nothing but whet Booth's curiosity.
"Not enough power?" Booth repeated. "So, I take it this place is very far away?"
"Yep," Jack nodded.
"What about the Asgard's technology?" Booth asked. "Don't we have Asgard technology that could get us there faster?"
"It is Asgard's technology that makes the trip be only three weeks long," Jack shrugged.
"Ok, you have to tell me where you'd be sending me," Booth grinned. "And what the mission is because you're killing me of curiosity here." Jack laughed and shook his head before sobering up and answering him.
"You'll be going to Atlantis where I want you and your team to teach the military personnel there how to conduct an effective criminal investigation."
A/N2: Hehehe, I'm thinking some of you might be cursing me out right about now. I'm kinda evil for leaving it there, aren't I??? lol Originally, this was supposed to be longer, with Jack and Booth going into what the mission would be but when I wrote and I got to this line it just felt done. And I couldn't not leave it there. I figured a little bit to whet your appetite for the sequel. So, is it whet it? A couple of things, Jack's health . . . if any of you have read SG1 in Atlantis, you know that this is actually a pretty big plot point there - it has a lot to do with the development of the story. So, I wasn't just throwing it here to throw it, it's here for a reason. I'm also writing a new one shot for the SG1 series Encounters, where we talk about it a little more. It's funny how I'm able to bring all of these things together; you'd think I planned it that way but I really didn't. About who's going on this little intergalactic trip . . . I'll be sending the whole team, I might leave Zack behind though. The fact is he's a hard character for me to write; you might have noticed that I don't really write him all that often, it's usually a few lines here and there. And since he's no longer on the show, I might just write him out of this universe. I'm not sure. What do you guys think? Also, they're going to be gone for a few months, and I don't want to leave Parker behind. I've pretty much resolved how I can bring him along. Do you guys have any thoughts about it? Well, I hope you let me know what you thought of this fic and what you think of my ideas for the sequel!! Thanks for reading!!