Rating: R Sam/Jack … Daniel/Paul
Summary: This is a revised Part 1 to the Anunnaki. After watching the Season 6 box, I REALLY needed to revise it. This will eventually be Sam/Jack/Daniel. SG-1 take some unusual trainees off-world to work on a request of the Asgard, who have misplaced a few friends.
Note: Anunnaki means gods of heaven and earth. And as far as I am aware, the Iraqis don't use this type of torture.
Jack scowled at a piece of junk mail, wondering how it got through the military firewall that he had set up on his home computer. The subject line caught his attention, though, "Re: Jackson." He contemplated opening it but he didn't know the sender.
"Sam!" he called. She came into his study, still barefoot, in her sleeping shorts and t-shirt. He took the cup from her hand, taking a sip, and pointed at the screen. She frowned at it and pushed him out of his seat. She did several things to the computer, all of which Jack didn't even try to understand.
"I don't find any viruses, trojans, or worms attached to it," she finally said. "Want to open it?" He gave a nod and she opened the email. They stared at the image that was attached. They tilted their heads, trying to get the angles.
Jack cleared his throat. "Flexible," he commented.
"And there is a trojan attached," Sam said, pointing. Jack scowled at her, his face slightly red. He picked up the phone and dialed.
"Good morning, Danny," he sang sweetly. Daniel was instantly awake and suspicious.
"What'd I do?"
"Check your email." Jack hung up and forwarded the email. He waited. The phone rang minutes later.
"I can explain!" Daniel insisted, panicking.
"Daniel, I don't care who you sleep with, but you may want to consider shutting the drapes. I know moonlight fun is nice, but think of the innocent peeping-toms. That picture looks like it was taken from outside your window. You boys play nice, I'll see you later. Interesting position, though, you'll need to tell me how you got into it. I feel something breaking just looking at it. Bye."
"After being terrorized by you first thing in the morning, playing is the last thing he's going to be able to do," Sam snickered after he hung up. She gave him a teasing lick at the fur on his belly and slid her hands up the backs of his thighs and into the leg of his shorts, giving his tight buns a caress as she rested her chin on his stomach, looking up at him.
"Oh, I think he'll 'play' just fine," Jack said. "If nothing more than to throw a finger at me. What actually concerns me is who has my private email and what do they hope to gain from this? Granted Major Davis has a hell of a lot to lose, but no one is going to care what Daniel does, least of all us."
"Already on it," Sam said, aware of the distraction her hands were causing under his shorts as evidenced by the hardness close to her face. "I sent a sniffer out to trace the email."
"I love you for your brains, you know that, right?" Jack asked.
She grinned up at him. "You better. Wanna try that position?"
Later in the morning, Jack woke up with a start. The room came into focus and he groaned, burying his face in the pillow. A soft leg gave a rub to the backs of his hairy ones.
"What's wrong?" Sam asked against his back. She planted her mouth between his shoulder blades for a moment.
"Nothing," he said. "Don't remember."
Sam didn't comment on his racing heart under her ear. He turned and she waited until he was settled before leaning on her elbow and looking at him as she toyed with the hair on his chest. She kissed him softly, tasting herself on his lips.
"Are you sure?" she asked. He nodded, bringing her down for a hug. "I want to ask you something." She leaned up a few minutes later to look at him.
"Don't get upset, just answer, ok?" He nodded, blinking away the sleep. "Do you ever think of Daniel….like that?"
Jack stared at her. "What…why would you ask something like that?"
"Because you said his name and it wasn't the first time," she replied.
"I didn't," he protested. Sam held him down.
"You did, Jack, and this was the third time," she informed him. "Honey, it doesn't bother me. If it were anyone else, I'd zat your balls off, but he doesn't threaten me. You need to be aware that you're doing it, though. If there is a part of you that sees him in a sexual light, tell me. He's hot, I certainly wouldn't blame you. Just talk to me."
Jack pushed up and out of the bed. The shower came on a moment later. Sam sighed, knowing this was going to be a long, drawn out fight with one stubborn General. He was hiding something. It was the weekend, though, and they weren't going anywhere.
Sam ignored the silence and worked on her bike. Twice Jack came out, stopped, looked as though he was going to speak, and turned and went back to the dock. Sam waited. Admitting to something not completely het was a difficult thing for someone like Jack. She had no doubt about his feelings for her, or for women in general for that matter, the old dog, but she had a feeling something about Daniel hit him upside the head in a surprise turn of events and Jack didn't take to surprises very well. Seeing Daniel in an intimate embrace with Major Davis certainly surprised her but the fact that they were together wasn't completely unexpected after seeing them 'spark' during the wedding reception. She did wonder if the boys were serious or if they were just fooling around.
"Sam, would you come inside?"
She looked up.
"Sure." She wiped her hands on a filthy cloth and followed him in. He went into the study and opened the drawer he usually kept locked on his desk. Sam knew it contained personal files on various top-secret subjects; he showed her, not wanting her to be suspicious about the contents of the drawer. She even had the spare key in case something happened to him. He wasn't supposed to have the files but all the higher-ups had shadows for home use.
His face was white, his hand shaking slightly as he handed her a file, not looking at her eyes. She took it, looking at him, and he left the room. After a moment, she sat behind his desk and opened the folder.
An hour later, she sat back, shocked. She didn't realize she had been crying until a droplet hit the papers. Jack came in and put a sandwich in front of her before sitting.
"It doesn't matter what I feel," he said, his voice husky. He bit into his tuna fish. "I won't be doing anything about it."
Sam couldn't look at her lunch as she sat, staring at the evidence photos, silently crying.
"Wh….what do you need from me?" she finally asked, barely able to speak.
"Nothing," Jack said. "Just love me and let this go."
She nodded and gathered the papers, replacing them neatly into the folder. She threw it across the room.
"I've done that more times than I can count," Jack said. Sam got up and left the room, returning to her motorcycle.
A short time later, the door opened. Jack sat on the ground behind Sam and pulled her into his arms. She turned in his legs, curling into a ball, and hid her face in his shoulder, letting go. He held her, said nothing, waiting for the storm to pass.
She sniffed into his t-shirt and lifted it, wiped her face on the edge, and lowered it back into place. Jack smiled slightly and pressed his mouth to the top of her head.
"What….do you want me to…stop…playing there?" she asked.
Jack shook his head, stroking her hair. "No, baby," he said softly. "I don't want you to do anything different. Don't BE different. I like your clever little fingers in me, if I didn't I would have said something the first time. I initiated that play, remember?"
He lifted her head and looked at her. Both their faces were wet.
"I'm fine," he insisted. "I see the shrink once in a great while, usually after Baal beats the crap out of me or some alien invades me. Hammond knows, which is why he usually gave us a little extra time after we got back from a few of those missions. I was either on the phone with the shrink or at his office. I made Hammond a promise I would do that after bad scenes. Between Charlie's death and my time in the Iraqi prison, I was a mess. Dr. Edmonds specializes in grief counseling for military personnel; he's been cleared for our own special needs. He's been trying to get me to discuss this with you; he wants us in for couples counseling, if you're up for it."
He stroked the tears from her cheeks and touched her lips.
"Daniel was a surprise," he said. "I honestly don't know what I would have done about it if I hadn't fallen in love with you. I had never thought about another man before, but there was something about him. At first, I thought I was getting my paternal ya-ya's out with him; I am old enough to be his father, as much as it pains me to admit it. After a while, though…. I'm sorry I spoke his name while we made love, I don't remember consciously thinking about him. I'll try not to do it again.
"I know who I'm with, Sam," he promised her, holding her face between his hands. "I love you. You turn me on in more ways than I have ever been turned on. It nearly killed me every time you kissed another man, and I had to restrain myself from zatting Pete into non-existence. But we couldn't be together and I wanted to see you happy, so…. I think I would have preferred you be with Martouf or Narim, if they had lived, rather than Pete, honey."
Sam sniffed and ducked her face, holding a wrist to her nose as she laughed. He smiled and brushed the hair from her face.
"Actually, I would have walked you down the aisle myself, if Daniel was waiting for you."
She stopped smiling and looked at him. He was serious. "I kissed him once," she said. He leaned back to look at her. "It was an experiment. We tried fanning up a flame but nothing happened. He kisses very well, and he knows how to hold a woman, but we ended up watching a movie with Ben and Jerry."
"Uh huh." Jack studied her. "So. I guess we won't be inviting him over for a threesome?"
"Oh, I don't know," she murmured, toying with a strand of hair peeking from Jack's shirt. "We could have been nervous thinking of our mean old colonel looking over our shoulders. He's comfortable, smells good, tastes good, certainly fills out his jeans nicely and now I know why after seeing that picture which I'm making into a screen-saver, by the way…."
Sam screeched in laughter as Jack knocked her backwards onto the ground.
Seeing him turn a corner in the hall, Sam hustled to catch up. He had been avoiding her all morning, the chicken-shit. She snuck up behind Daniel and slid her arm through his. Startled, he looked down and immediately flushed at the twinkling blue eyes.
"Oh God, don't start," he begged, throwing his head back and dragging his feet. He went into his office with her in tow. Someone looking through the knick-knacks looked up and panicked, moving to escape.
"Down, major," Sam ordered, pointing at a chair. Davis sat, his face, too, reddening. Sam stood, looking at the two guilty boys.
Daniel's head fell to the desk with a thud and he whimpered under his breath.
"Paul, there is nothing the Goa'uld can dish out that compares to interrogation ala Carter," came the information from the desk top.
"Daniel, I'm hurt," Sam pouted. "Touched by your confidence in me, but hurt. Now tell me –are you boys serious or just foolin' around?"
Daniel cried out in pain and fell back in his chair. "I knew it!" he cried. "She's like a terrier with a cornered cat. If I tell you we're just having a little fun, will you go away?" He opened one eye and peeked at her.
She pursed her lips, thinking. "I like the terrier and cat thing," she said. "You are pet-able." She stroked his hair and gave his ear a scratch. "Does he purr, major?"
Davis found himself unexpectedly entertained. "Actually, he does, colonel," he admitted. Daniel sat up, indignant.
"I said nothing about your purr spots. Like the one at the back of your neck. He stretches like a cat, too," Davis offered.
"That I do know," Sam said, waving a finger in the air. "Off-world camp-outs. And he's very funny until he's had his first cup of coffee," she continued. "Drops about 100 IQ points without caffeine."
Daniel moaned and hung like dead weight off his chair. Sam snickered and kissed his forehead.
"Briefing room in ten," she reminded him. "Oh, I traced the email. Jack is dealing with it."
She lifted Daniel's head and pushed his hair aside. He needed a haircut again. There was a small bruise on the back of his neck.
"Uh huh," she said and turned to leave.
"No, wait!" Daniel called out. "Who sent the email?"
"The general is dealing with it," she said firmly. Daniel knew that tone; he'd get nothing out of her.
Ten minutes later, Daniel winced as he entered the conference room. Jack sat at the head of the table, smiling pleasantly. He was dressed in BDU's and a black t-shirt instead of his usual office uniform.
"Good morning, Daniel. Major Davis," he greeted them. Sam stopped a grin from forming. Jack crooked a finger at Daniel who reluctantly shuffled forward. Jack twirled the finger and Daniel turned. His hair was brushed aside.
"Big mouth," Daniel informed Sam.
"That's ok," Jack said, shooing Daniel away. "You should see where she left one on me."
"And I think I sprained something when she finally got me into that position. Be that as it may, a glorious day has been planned for you kids," he informed them. "And yes, Major Davis will be joining us with the blessings of General Vidrine." Davis looked startled. "Major, welcome to SG-1. I know you've already received a warm welcome from one of our crew. I give you a warm welcome, also, but not that warm. Sorry." Davis flushed.
"How afraid should we be?" Daniel asked, feeling the heat run across his own face. Jack was going to milk that pic for all its worth.
"Very," Jack was pleased to inform him. "We are taking a few wanna-be's out for a test-drive. It seems a few ranking officers in the Pentagon have made a bargain with the devil himself and I'm not talking about Sokar. I'm talking General Maynard. The general consensus, no pun intended, is that we've been padding our reports." He allowed the eruption to continue for a moment before holding up his hand for silence. "I'm tired of arguing with them," he said. "Our trainees are: General Maynard himself, not that he doubts us, he just wants a little first hand knowledge of what we go up against on a daily basis so that he can argue our case more effectively with the nay-sayers. Others are all tied to the Pentagon in one way or another and have been briefed on the SGC for years, waiting for the opportunity to take down alien baddies: General Robert Allegash, Colonel Edward Philips, Colonel Mike Crawford and don't even think about Phantom jokes, a few specially chosen from the ranks, and just for fits and giggles, I sent a personal invitation to a couple of wrenches to toss into the works –Jonas and Nate."
Sam and Daniel looked at him wide-eyed.
"Oh, my," they breathed.
"Yes, my young clone is tickled pink," Jack assured him. "I could hear the wheels grinding away when I told him about this. And not even Maynard knows about him other than I had a surprise appearance a couple years ago from an oops in my past, as my personnel file states. The particulars about Jonas and Nate will be kept secret unless one of the trainees figures it out. And best of all?" he looked expectantly at them.
"None of our trainees are allowed to pull rank on us. SGC holds the final decisions. Major, this is probably the only opportunity you will have to boss around your bosses and I have a guarantee that no retribution will visit you. They are all temporarily busted down to Sergeants. I think I'll give the first KP detail to Allegash. Man's been is a pain in my patoot since we went through basic together."
"You coming with us?" Sam asked, grinning from ear to ear.
"Yes, Colonel Snookums, I am," he said, thoroughly pleased with himself.
"Uh, sir?" Davis raised his hand.
"The Chair recognizes Major Davis," Jack called out, giving him a wave to continue. Daniel and Sam looked at each other and rolled their eyes.
"Thank you, sir. Not to be the one to throw a wrench of my own, but…. Those people are all in key positions, as you say. Accidents happen, especially out there. We can't afford to lose them."
"Yes, accidents do happen," Jack agreed. "I invited a few friends to help us out, not to worry. Colonel Reynolds will be assisting us, and Jonas is already here. Jonas will be attached to SG-3 as their resident geek with the blessings of his immediate supervisor, Dr. Jackson. So kind, Daniel, thank you." Daniel waved a negligent hand at him. "We're going to let them figure Nate out for themselves. Our new recruits have been briefed and think we are taking them on a survival field-trip on a planet we've never been to, which should make things more interesting considering the fact that we really haven't been there before. They don't believe that we continually fall into things out there. I guess planet hopping is supposed to be cut and dried. Between Daniel and Jonas, we should be able to show them a good time. I have faith in you, Danny. They are getting dressed appropriately, so you kids skedaddle down to the locker room, be in the gate room in one hour."
Colonel Reynolds greeted Daniel and Davis as they entered the locker room, and introduced them to their trainees. By the time Daniel was tying his bootlaces, the door burst open and a figure ran in, dodged several men, and hid in the showers. The SGC personnel were deaf and blind to the episode as their recruits craned their heads from SG people to the ghost in the shower and back again. A second later, the door slammed opened again and Jack stood in the doorway, scowling.
"Where is he?" he demanded.
"Where is who, Jack?" Daniel replied calmly, fixing a stubborn lace.
"That little….." Jack growled, hissed, and snarled.
"I speak 23 languages, Jack, pick one."
Jack bit off a curse and shut the door. Reynolds and Bosco were silently snickering while the others looked around the room at Daniel for an explanation.
"You've been here, what? Five minutes?" Daniel called out. "What'd you do?"
The figure in the shower stuck his head out, looking around. Finding his pursuer gone, he came out.
"I didn't do anything," he insisted. "All I said was that he'd better bring me home in one piece or Cassie would skin him. He asked what I had to do with Cass and I reminded him that I moved in with her."
Daniel paused in strapping his holster to his thighs. "You did what?"
Nate crossed his arms and stared at Daniel. "Don't give me that look," he said. "You know damned well she and I have been dating."
"Nooo," Daniel shook his head. "Last we heard, Cassandra said she was getting serious about someone named Jonathan. She said nothing about living with anyone. Since neither you –NATE- nor Jack ever use Jonathan for anything other than parking tickets, you can see why the information that you are sexually active with a young lady he adores as his own favorite niece may have thrown him for a loop."
Nate stared at him. "Alright, I'll concede that one," he reluctantly admitted and went to Jack's locker for BDU's and a t-shirt; he could now wear Jack's uniforms even though they were a little baggy around his coltish long legs. "He really needs to chill out, though; he's going to give himself a heart attack."
Daniel chuckled. "This isn't his first surprise this weekend, give him a break."
Nate striped the civvies off and started to dress. He grinned at Daniel. "What'd you do?"
"Tell you later. And you'll need to tell Sam, since she's been mothering Cassandra since Janet died." Nate grimaced, preferring to duke it out with Jack.
He looked over at Maynard who nodded his head at Nate with an inquiring look.
"Oh, sorry, sir," Daniel said. "Everyone, this is Nate O'Neill. Jack is bringing him along as a form of self-torture."
"Ha-ha," Nate dryly responded. He pulled his hair back and bound the dark blond strands together with some fabric thingy. The others stared at the 18 year old version of the general. With long hair and an earring.
"General O'Neill is taking his civilian son off-world?" Allegash questioned, his expression saying it all.
Daniel nodded. "It's a long story," he said. "Nate is cleared for it. And we need to get a move-on, people. Gate room in ten."
The wormhole was established, SGC personnel taking pride in the looks of awe on the faces of the newbies as the event horizon whooshed and settled into place. Jack and Sam came in, Sam glaring at Nate.
"Oh, shit," he muttered. Sam cocked her zat. Nate ran for the wormhole with Sam hot on his heels.
"Dead meat, O'Neill!" she yelled, running into the wormhole after him. Jack smiled evilly and ushered the troops after her.
"Ah, family reunions," Daniel said, clasping Jonas on the shoulder. When they came out on the other side, Sam was chasing Nate across the open field in front of three highly amused Jaffa, all of them cheering Sam on.
"She's a big girl, Sam!"
"She's a baby!"
"You're two years old and she's still a baby!"
"I'm 18 and she's MY baby!"
The zat discharged and Nate fell. Sam stood over him, scratched her foot in the dirt, and snorted at his body before stomping back to the group. Teal'c, Bre'tac, and Rya'c, cheered and bowed to her.
"I shudder to think what would happen if she and Jack have kids and a boy comes to the door asking for their daughter," Daniel commented. SGC people shuddered in sympathy.
"She'll be in a nunnery before that happens," Jack said, going to kick some life into Nate's stunned body.
"Is this normal?" Maynard asked, leaning over toward Daniel.
He shrugged. "Not really," Daniel said. "We usually don't have Nate with us. The very act of his breathing tends to provoke Jack. Don't worry; Nate will be fine, it wears off in a few minutes. It's the second shot directly after the first that kills. Jack and Sam will calm down. In a few days."
Their trainees all looked dubious.
"Teal'c!" Reynolds called out. He clasped forearms with their Combat Master and introduced Teal'c to his new trainees. Teal'c glared at the men, daring them to twitch.
"I am Teal'c; I will be your Combat Master. This is Master Bre'tac," Teal'c informed them, gesturing to the older man. "He is my Mentor. He is the greatest of warriors. You will obey him or answer to me. This is Rya'c, my son; he has earned his place among warriors." Teal'c marched up and down in front of the men, sneering at them. "Humans are weak," he pronounced. "When you return home, if you return home, you will not be weak."
The SGC personnel were proud of Teal'c performance and were prepared to shout out a Semper Fi in honor of it. The trainees were glaring at Teal'c, incredulous that he would call the best America had to offer weak.
Jack walked to Teal'c side as Nate staggered to the group, stretching out the kinks in his stunned muscles.
"You will notice that you have numbers on your jackets," Jack pointed out to them. "That number is your team. SG-1 and SG-3. SG-1 is the first contact team, SG-3 is the first of our Marines, first in combat. That cute sigil is the symbol for Earth. It represents the pyramids of Egypt and our single moon. Or sun; you'll have to argue with Dr. Jackson about that. Dr. Jackson will lecture you on its relevance and you will listen and you will not fall asleep. You will find that sigil on all the DHD's on every planet that has a Stargate. The DHD is the dial home device. We don't get home without it. We may be made up of American military personnel at the moment, but we represent the entire planet. We are the Tau'ri; aliens don't care about states, countries, or governmental politics. That sigil is Tau'ri and the Goa'uld, the bad-asses that we are fighting, recognize it as such. There will be no American flags planted on alien soil, gentlemen, we are not out here to conquer, we are here to gain allies.
"We normally have only one squad on a playing field, one squad to walk into a new situation and meet new folks. Just one, people. Four highly specialized and trained people. Today we have five squads. You will remain in squads at all times and you will learn to work together in this unknown environment. You may be split up at various times into different squads, but you will always return to home base. When you are not in combat training, you will be given specific duties by your CO's.
"A special request by our allies the Asgard has been made. It seems they've been missing a few friends for about a thousand years. Yes, one thousand years. The Asgard have a long lifespan. This planet used to be a post belonging to Ra; although he is dead, we don't know if any traps were left, so watch where you step. The Asgard have great faith in Dr. Jackson; if he can't find where these people went, no one will. Not to put any pressure on you, Daniel. Everyone will be assisting Dr. Jackson." Daniel squeezed his eyes shut for a moment and pinched the bridge of his nose. Jack assisting on a dig….
"Main squads are: Allegash, Philips, Gaafar, Colins with SG-1," Jack informed them. "Maynard, Crawford, Shan, Levin with SG-3. Colonel Carter is in charge of SG-1 with Major Davis as her second, Dr. Jackson as their specialist, and Nate as their vanguard. Colonel Reynolds is in charge of SG-3 with Major Bosco as his second, Dr. Quinn as their specialist, and Rya'c as their vanguard. Within the groups, you will be paired one SG team member and one trainee. I will oversee both groups." The inclusion of the wiry, long-haired Nate as SG-1's vanguard was earning the young man more than a few curious looks from the trainees.
"Do not disrespect our civilian specialists, Dr. Jackson and Dr. Quinn, they are not only smarter than you, they're asses are worth more than yours; I respect them therefore you will respect them. Do not disrespect your Combat Masters; I won't stop them from beating the shit out of you for your insolence toward them. The SGC Marines look to Teal'c as their Combat Master, so will you. Even our archaeologists here have trained with Teal'c. A few SGC personnel, such as SG-1, have trained with Master Bre'tac himself. I have a case of Scotch for the first man to bring down Master Bre'tac, hand to hand. And I'll tell you this –that case has been sitting around for years waiting to be claimed."
They looked at the old man leaning on his staff. Bre'tac grinned at them.
"Daniel!" Jack called out. "Please tell our recruits the first mistake they made which would have had you bitching at me non-stop our entire time here, had it been just SG-1 coming through that gate. Don't think I haven't noticed you twitching."
Daniel went to the front of the group, pushed his glasses into place, crossed his arms, and started his lecture on the sanctity of first contact space. He was glad Jack picked up on that issue because it was itching at him.
"Although we have met a few peoples who are more advanced than we are, most worlds are not as industrialized as ours, for reasons I will get into at a later time," he said. "They tend to view their Stargate and DHD as devices of the gods, so they create sacred ground around the devices. Standing stones, harvest offering tables, etc. Investigating anything around the Stargate that is not naturally occurring, gives us a clue as to who lives or lived nearby. The act of trampling across artifacts before someone like myself or Jonas has had a chance to examine them has led us directly into very big messes which could have been avoided if you people with elephantitis of the feet had listened to us. The very act of picking a plant almost destroyed a race of very gentle beings because we didn't first pay attention to the function of that plant in their society. Never assume, people. As the old saying goes, you cannot judge a book by its cover."
"Sergeant Philips, are you sure that stalk of grass you are chewing on isn't poisonous to our systems? It could be a narcotic. Ask the general about alien lettuce. Or maybe something big and ugly peed on it yesterday? I think Bre'tac's been here a few days." Bre'tac chuckled. "Maybe it's a sacred plant for the indigenous peoples and they'll get it into their heads to sacrifice you for profaning an article of their religion." Granted the chances of any of that are very slim, but it was pretty stupid to stick something alien in one's mouth without thinking about the consequences.
Philips took the grass from his mouth and threw it down, spitting after it.
"If there are no advanced weapons or technologies to be gained, why are we bothering with primitive cultures?" Allegash asked, clearly impatient with the whole affair. "Not to mention a culture that is missing."
"Primitive does not mean stupid," Daniel informed him. "We are primitive compared to some we've met. Some won't even talk to us because we are so primitive. And a missing culture has already provided us with more technology than you know about simply because figuring out how to use it is beyond our current evolutionary knowledge. By the time we get home, you need to be able to answer the rest of it for yourself." Jack nodded in understanding at the look Daniel tossed him and barked the order to set up their site.
"Now, we will be setting up here, Jack?" Daniel looked at him. Jack nodded. "Before you spread out, take a good look at the ground. Don't just toss rocks out of your way, look at them. Are there any fossils on them? Any hand-made marks? Are there any pieces of bone? If so, don't move it, just call me or Jonas over. That's it for now."
Jack barked out the order and people spread out, walking carefully over the ground. He knew Daniel was being overly cautious but it pleased him to watch the generals tip-toeing around. He got the feeling Daniel was getting a kick out of it, too. Which reminded him…. He stepped over to Daniel who was heads down with Sam, Reynolds, and Davis.
"Daniel, our peeping-tom is among this group," Jack said under his breath after nodding for Reynolds to excuse himself. "I want you and Davis to be slightly obvious. Don't go over-board, just make it speculative. I'm not going to tell you who it is, I want him to expose himself. So to speak. It's one thing for us to accuse, it's another if he does it himself. Are you guys alright with that? You'd be outing yourselves, so I won't make you do it, if you're not ok with it. Davis, you have much more to lose, but I'll do my best to protect you. Vidrine is completely aware of this."
Daniel looked at Davis who shrugged and nodded. "We can do it," Daniel assured him. "I don't suppose you're going to let us share a tent."
"Nice try. If I can't share with Sam, you can't share with your major," he said. "No hanky-panky, boys. Davis shares with Sam, Daniel will share with Nate. It'll keep me and Sam from killing him."
As he set up his own space, something dropped on Jack's head. He reached up to brush it off, hoping it wasn't something's doo-doo. A hard something fell to the ground and he bent to pick it up. It was a nut or seed or something. He dropped it. Another one hit him. Jack looked up.
"Daniel, we have company," he said quietly.
"I know," Daniel said. "They're just playing with you."
The others looked up, startled to see small furry faces peering at them from the canopy of leaves.
"What are they?" someone asked.
"Children, I think," Daniel said.
"Not animals?" Maynard asked. Daniel shook his head.
"I don't think so," he said. "A couple are wearing tooled leather. From their actions, they seem like children, although I could be reading into it. They come in different sizes, a few of the larger ones have more of a mane than the littles do. Feline evolution, looks like, unlike our own primate branch." He bent and picked up one of the fallen seeds and tossed it into the trees. The canopy erupted with hooting and a shower of leaves fell on them. Several people laughed.
"They are indeed children," Teal'c said. "We saw their village earlier. I do not believe they are violent. The young play often and seem to be raised by the village."
"That would make sense," Daniel said. "Felines tend to be social creatures, with the females of the clan raising the young." He paused, crouching low to the ground, and held out a hand toward a little face peering out from the bush. After hesitating, a small one cautiously inched forward. It looked like a kitten with human form; fur, a tail, ears on top of its head, and whiskers on a short muzzle, standing on two legs. One in the trees called out and the little one called back in a tone that the humans would have called scathing. The little sniffed at Daniel's hand, looking closely at him. Daniel slowly turned his open hand over so that his young friend could examine it.
"Does rabies exist out here?" Allegash asked, looking distastefully at the furry creatures.
"Let Dr. Doolittle play," Jack said. "This is how we gain allies."
The little poked bravely at Daniel's glasses and then at the bandana on his head. Daniel slowly removed the cloth. The little touched Daniel's hair and then gave it a stroke, cooing beneath its breath. Daniel gave a small grunt at a tug of his hair. The creature jumped, startled, and Daniel fell to his butt. He gave a playful tug at the creature's fur. The creature hooted and darted forward to poke at Daniel. Daniel poked back.
Jack glanced back at the grown man giggling as he rolled on the ground, playing with a furry child.
"No, Daniel, you cannot keep it," Jack called out to him. Daniel stood, wearing a furry shawl on his back.
"Aw, Dad, please can we keep him?" Daniel whined. Several other local children scrambled around them, poking playfully at legs and pouncing on boot laces and rope. Several of the men couldn't help but smile at the creatures.
"I can't even get you to walk the dog, you think I'm letting you have an alien cat?" Jack asked.
"They are like kittens," Colins commented, wiggling a finger at one.
"These kittens have very sharp claws and fangs," Daniel pointed out. "More like panther cubs. They do have a definite language, Jack."
"Daniel, if you learn to snarl and hiss and purr and call it a language, I will consent to drink a cup of that Egyptian mud you like to drink."
Daniel ignored Sam as she grinned at him. "It's Turkish coffee, you barbarian, and I may not be able to make my vocal cords do what these kids are doing, but I will learn to understand them."
He took hold of the child's paws and swung him around to the front, setting the child on a hip. Daniel said his name, pointing to himself, and repeated it as the child listened, tail twitching against Daniel's arm, one green eye and one blue eye watching intently. The child eventually made a careful D and L sound. Jack rolled his eyes.
"Told you so," Daniel nagged at him. He continued the English 101 with the child as they set up.
"I can't pronounce what I think his name is but T'Keet seems to be close," he said. The little clung to his t-shirt with sharp claws as he bent to find his allergy meds, muttering about cat dander.
"Are you sure it's a he?" Sam asked, dropping her bags. Several children tried lifting them.
"No," Daniel admitted. "Actually, I don't see any genitalia but that doesn't mean much. Look at the Asgard. I get a He sense from him, though, so until someone tells me otherwise, this is a he."
"Uh, oh." They paused and looked up at Jonas' warning. Across the field, several much larger furred creatures stood watching them. Daniel tapped the child and pointed. The child jumped down and all the children scrambled across the field to their elders, clamored over them, all trying to talk at once.
"Gives new meaning to talking your ear off," Davis noted, seeing a child clinging to a shoulder and pulling on its elder's ear as it pointed in their direction with its tail.
"Tails seem a little prehensile," Daniel commented. "Jack, we should wait on setting up any further," he said. "They may have a problem with us being here." Jack nodded, motioning to the others. Daniel slowly walked forward until he was between the two groups and carefully sat on the ground, waiting.
One of the elders came forward. This one had a full mane of dappled brown fur. He sat on the ground a yard from Daniel. Remembering what Thor had said about them, Daniel tried a word.
"Friends," he said slowly in Goa'uld. The creature's ears twitched and its eyes widened slightly. "Tok Ra." Against Ra….
The creature glanced at the sky, worried. Daniel shook his head.
"Ra is dead," he said. The ears went back.
"Ra dead?" came a rumble from the furred throat.
Daniel gave a nod. "Yes. We killed him long ago." He indicated the group behind him. The local barked something back at his group and several more came cautiously forward. Daniel held up a hand to Jack, indicating that it was alright.
As Daniel talked with the locals, the others continued with setting up. After a while, Daniel paused the talks and called Jack and Sam over.
"This is M'Net, which is as close as I can get. He doesn't seem to mind, in fact he thinks it's humorous," Daniel said, indicating the main person he was talking with. "They understand most of the Goa'uld I've tried on them, I think they consider it a warrior's language. They were slaves of the Goa'uld when Ra was here. Seems we're actually on a fairly unexplored continent; this continent has been taboo for a long time because of Ra, but they've started branching out over the past couple hundred years. Most of the population is on the opposite side of the planet. M'Net here doesn't know about any missing Asgard buddies, but says it may be something their teachers know about. I'm getting a translation close to 'bard', actually, which would make sense; the bards of Earth always knew things most others didn't. M'Net seems to be your equivalent, Jack, their troops leader. He'd like to go back and speak to their tribal leaders about us and get input. He wanted to know if our Queen was with us, by the way. They're matriarchal with a tribal council in out-lying villages like theirs, and a Queen with a main council on their home continent. I explained that we were not ruled that way. And he is a he; grown males have manes. That's about the only outward signal, the rest are more geared toward pheromones and their own gender recognition. The children apparently are neuter until about six years old when gender begins to kick in at puberty. He had no problem with me asking. He found it interesting that we are born with our gender already established. And they refer to the cubs in a third gender which really isn't translatable. Female comes closer than male, which would make sense in a matriarchal culture."
Sam smiled. "Makes sense genetically, too; an embryo starts out female and stays that way unless something triggers it to become male. You covered a lot of ground in the first round of talks," she commented. M'Net said something to Daniel who flushed slightly and shook his head, murmuring something back.
"What?" Jack asked.
"He, uh, wanted to know if this was a female and if she were nursing," Daniel admitted. "Apparently, their females only have breasts when nursing. I told him this was normal for our adult females and that you weren't nursing under the assumption that there isn't anything you haven't told me?"
Sam laughed and shook her head. "No, Daniel, I'm not pregnant," she assured him. Jack looked disappointed. M'Net said something else and again, Daniel flushed and shook his head. Jack poked him.
"He wanted to know if…we…were your consorts," Daniel said to Sam. "He said you have a female's mane and eyes worthy of many consorts. Take it as a compliment; they have polyandry households and it sounds like they give all honors to their clan leader, their mate. I told him that only Jack was your consort."
"Thank you," she said to M'Net in careful Goa'uld. "Tell him you're the language guy, I only know a few words." Daniel repeated it to M'Net who flicked his whiskers forward.
"That's a head nod," Daniel said. M'Net said something else and Daniel turned around, looking, before turning back and answering, gesturing to Jack.
"He noticed Nate," Daniel said. "He said Nate has a glorious mane and must bring you great pride. He sees the resemblance. He wanted to know if your mate had begun negotiations with a female so that he would make first consort, which would be worthy of his mane. I explained that we don't do that, either."
"I don't know about great pride," Jack mumbled. Daniel lied and thanked M'Net.
"I take it manes are a big thing?" Sam asked. Daniel nodded.
"Manes, tails, over all fur color and texture, and eye color," he said. "His name means 'sunlight on the forest floor'."
"Tell him that his mane is lovely and his mate must be proud of him," Sam said. "And ask him if there is anything that they'd rather we not be doing while we are here." Jack nodded his approval and Daniel repeated the conversation.
"He states quite proudly that he is First Consort, thanks you for the compliment, and says to please not set up any permanent structures. We can look around but he's going to meet with their council to make sure there isn't a problem with out being here. He doesn't see any problem, but what does he know, he's only the leader of their guard."
Jack snorted. "Tell me," he muttered, glancing back at their generals who were wearing sergeant stripes. "Daniel, what does he think this place is?" he jutted a thumb back at the gate. Daniel asked.
"He said they've always been told that this is the gate to the realm of the gods," Daniel said. "This continent has been forbidden territory for a long time, which is why it isn't developed. The gods haven't come in a long time, longer than the oldest of the…. Sua, I think their race name is, so their priests have given permission for an expedition. Expeditions apparently include entire households. Everything seems to be a family affair." Daniel repeated a word for clarification and M'Net arched his whiskers. Daniel nodded thoughtfully.
"What is it?" Jack asked, seeing something cross Daniel's face.
"Hmm? Oh, nothing," Daniel said, shaking his head. "It's just…every once in a while he says something that sounds like a loan word. A word from another language. Well, there are only so many sounds vocal cords can make, it stands to reason that sounds would over-lap in different languages." Daniel looked back and called for Teal'c on his radio. Teal'c strode over to them.
"T, do these words sound familiar to you?" Daniel asked and repeated several words. Teal'c thought about it and shook his head.
"They do not," he said.
"Hmmm. Ok, thanks. Oh, their warriors speak some Goa'uld," Daniel told him and introduced them. Teal'c gave a short bow and spoke a greeting to M'Net who returned it.
"You've been speaking Goa'uld," Jack said. "Could those loan words be in their original language?"
Daniel shook his head. "I don't think so," he said. "Listen to the others talking amongst themselves; those loan words sound nothing like what they're spitting out. They're reminding me of something. I'll get it eventually."
Several of the Sua hooted softly in their amusement, gesturing with their tails. SG-1 looked behind them to see Nate turning cartwheels and trying to get the cubs to learn it. Sam, Daniel, and Teal'c looked at Jack.
"Don't look at me," he protested. "I never learned how to do that."
Nate walked on his hands a few steps before tumbling down. He was instantly covered in cubs and laughing. Jack watched him. Sam looked from one to the other and bent down, pressing her mouth to the top of Jack's head.
"He is learning to open his arms," she whispered into his hair. "He is learning to embrace what the universe brings him."