Disclaimer: We own none of the Stargate franchise.
Summary: What if it had been Teyla and Ronon instead of Elizabeth and John to be possessed by the aliens in "The Long Goodbye"? Twists and Spanky goodness aplenty. Written for SAWS 2009 - Spanky a Week Summer.
Warnings: Violence, a kiss or two
Spoilers: The Long Goodbye
Title: Spiritual Collision
Author's Note: Another fic inspired by fyd818's brilliant brain, never failing to come up with original and promising idea's. We very much enjoyed the actual episode 'The Long Goodbye' - though of course as a writer your imagination starts thinking of possible alternate versions entirely without your permission, but of course - you can't do anything about it other then giving in and just writing it. And so we present to you.... Spiritual Collision! *tadaaa* Thanks for checking us out – and we hope you enjoy! –TeylaFan & fyd818
Colonel Sheppard gently applied some pressure to the right, his hands resting comfortably and familiarly on the controls of the Jumper. He had adjusted their course slightly in accordance to the coordinates to P5K-764 that were visible on the screen, providing him with a diagram of all the necessary information, such as their altitude and current location. His team had been visiting a number of planets every week, considering their options for possible evacuation points in case they needed to abandon Atlantis. With the threat of the Wraith ever present, and the possible complications of that the city itself presented, it was essential that they had a back up plan.
Teyla Emmagan sat beside the team leader, the comforting presence of her teammate Ronon Dex in his usual seat behind her. The good Doctor Rodney McKay was seated behind Colonel Sheppard, a life signs detector in his hands, though quite unnecessary at the moment. The jumper displayed to the four of them any information they required.
After a moment of silence, Ronon continued the conversation on its previous subject – the television that all Earthlings spoke of with such fondness. "So people just sit and watch this box for hours at a time?" he asked in amazement, puzzled as to why anyone would enjoy such an absurd activity.
Sheppard answered him without a backwards glance, keeping his focus on controlling the Jumper. "Yeah, people do."
Teyla had of course seen this device on occasion, yet could still relate perfectly with Ronon's wonder. She had yet to grow as fond of it as they all seemed to be. She voiced the question that came to her aloud, unable to keep herself from meddling into the conversation. "Is it that engaging?"
Deftly lowering the ship toward the surface of the planet, the colonel shrugged. "Depends what's on it. There are lots of programs on dozens of channels, every day, all day."
From his seat, Rodney piped in with his two cents. "Most of which are fictional representations of ridiculously attractive people in absurd situations." He gave a little snort of derision, making his opinion of the whole thing obvious. Putting down the life signs detector, obviously deciding it was useless, he picked up his hand held computer to do some other scans.
"There are educational programs, all sorts of documentaries," John continued smoothly. "Not many people watch 'em but, uh, well, they're on." He gave another shrug, eyes shifting from the readouts interposed over the windscreen, to the planet's surface below, to the controls he was manipulating.
Teyla found the whole thing rather amusing. The few things she had seen on television hadn't made much sense to her, but she imagined if she watched the box long enough it would start to make sense, and she'd enjoy the experience more. Glancing behind her, though, made her realize that her Satedan team mate wasn't quite so impressed with the Earthlings' version of entertainment.
"And that's what everybody on your planet does for entertainment? Watch a box?" One eyebrow quirked up in disbelief as Ronon caught her glance and grimaced. He was by far a man of action, anyway, so Teyla thought it made sense that the idea of sitting in one place doing the same thing for an extended period of time would seem boring, if not strange, to him.
"Not everyone," McKay was quick to correct. "Although I will confess to the occasional half hour of Jeopardy." He looked smug as he went back to examining the screen before him, undoubtedly looking for something interesting on the desolate-looking plain that was coming into view below.
"Jeopardy?" This time Ronon's voice was tinged with a note of interest. Teyla felt her own interest perk, too. It sounded dangerous and exciting, nothing like what John and Rodney had been telling them about so far.
Rodney sighed long-sufferingly. "It's the name of the show -- Jeopardy." He pressed a few keys on his hand-held computer, humming in interest.
Now Ronon definitely looked interested. "Sounds dangerous." He grinned at Teyla, winking when she smiled back. Rolling her lips to hide her chuckle, she looked forward again, her interest once more quickly captured by the rapidly-approaching planet.
"Double jeopardy – that's twice as dangerous." The little smirk on Sheppard's lips showed his pleasure at discussing the subject – or perhaps it was at annoying McKay, since the scientist let out a little squawk of protest. But before the sound was even completely out of the scientist's mouth, it changed to another hum of interest.
At the same moment, Teyla spotted something below, almost the color of the sand it stood half-buried in. "What is that?" She pointed.
Immediately Sheppard's gaze moved to follow the direction of her motioning finger, and she felt Ronon get out of his seat to lean over her shoulder interestedly. "I don't know," the former said. "Looks like some sort of – temple?"
The building looked to be fairly small, made even smaller by the sand that had piled up around it. Apparently it had been abandoned for many years. Two columns supported the small portico at the front of the stone building; the roof looked to have nearly been worn through by sandstorms over the years. The structure looked fairly steady, but they wouldn't know for sure until they got a closer look. Measuring it by eye, Teyla thought it was around the size of her tent back on New Athos – not very large at all.
In their intense study of the building, no one had noticed Rodney's actions until he let out a little cry. Sheppard nearly flew the Jumper off-course in his surprise, looking for enemies, as Ronon's hand went straight to his weapon. Teyla's hand found hers easily as she turned to look at McKay. "What is it?" she asked anxiously.
"Life signs!" the scientist squeaked. He lifted a somewhat shaky hand to indicate the temple. "There's two life signs in there!"
Sheppard salvaged the Jumper's course and continued lowering it toward the surface, which they'd almost reached by then. "Okay," he said. "Hostile?"
Rodney snorted. "Like I'm supposed to be able to tell that from this?" He indicated his computer, annoyed.
"Never mind." Settling the Jumper down safely, Sheppard powered off all its systems and reached for the button to lower the back hatch. "Is it safe to go out there?" He looked back at McKay.
Teyla stood and joined Ronon by the entrance to the rear section of the little ship, noting how good it felt to stretch her legs. They'd been flying for quite a few hours – though the planet was close to the planet where they'd exited a Gate, it was still a four-hour flight from that planet to this one.
"As far as I can tell, yes. Since we haven't been fired upon, and we don't see anyone out there waving weapons at us, I would think it would be safe to go outside." McKay awkwardly balanced his computer and his gun at the same time, looking less than capable of taking care of himself.
Sheppard sat pondering the situation for a long moment, his eyes scanning the weather map he'd brought up of the area. "Doesn't look like there's any dangerous weather systems moving in. We should be okay for the moment." Standing, he pushed between Ronon and Teyla and headed toward the now-lowering ramp, weapon at the ready just in case. "Just a quick in, quick out. Okay?"
Everyone nodded their agreement and followed.
The moment they stepped outside, Teyla wished for the cool comfort of the Jumper again. The sun beat down unchallenged on the sand, which seemed to immediately work itself into every opening in her clothes and shoes. She squinted against the sun and the sand that was stirred into her eyes by a light but hot breeze. McKay was already grumbling his way along behind her, complaining about how the sand was getting to him and making his computer fritz a little.
The four gathered under the slight protection of the portico, warily watching the closed door. Sheppard silently motioned to Ronon, who did a countdown from three on his fingers, then gave the old wooden door a hefty kick. It banged inward, falling off its old, rusted hinges to stir up a cloud of dust on the floor. The many years' worth of sand that had collected against the surface, blocked out by the door, rushed through the sudden opening to create an unsteady ramp into the building.
Flipping on the little light atop his P-90, Sheppard was the first into the building, flashing his weapon around to take on whoever would challenge him. But everything was quiet, still – dead.
On opposite sides of the single room, decorated with stone walls, two pods sat softly humming, covered in a thick layer of dust. At the head of each stood two silent stone statues, one holding a sword whose blade pointed up, the other whose blade pointed down. Each statue's head was bowed as if in deference to the pods' inhabitants. The really interesting thing was the long-dead flowers that were piled by each pod – they appeared to be of different species, none the same as the others' plants.
"Are those the life signs?" John demanded, surprised.
"Yeah!" McKay blinked. "Life pods. Those are life pods. Very old life pods." He coughed and waved his hand in front of his face as Ronon cautiously reached out and swiped his hand over the dust that had gathered on it. "Oh, good job, Conan. Do you know what you probably just stirred up? We're all gonna die of mold and dust spores clogging our lungs, thank you so much."
Ronon glared at him in response, gently twirling his gun around with ease, taking a step closer to the scientist.
Sheppard stepped in between them casually, staring at the two pods resting before them. "Why don't you focus on these life signs McKay," he suggested. "Instead of gracing us with your charming comments," he added, raising one eyebrow as a warning for the remark that was sure to have come in return.
McKay wisely chose to keep the insults at bay, and stepped closer to their latest find of foreign technology, presenting a great possibility for new information and intelligence to be discovered.
"Well – whoever's in there, they're still alive." He decided, glancing at the computer ever present in his hands, speaking more to himself then to the others.
"Or," he paused, "whatever's in there."
Sheppard sighed, and Teyla barely caught a glimpse of his eyes rolling at Doctor McKay's comment.
"How long do you think they've been in those pods?" Sheppard asked.
McKay shrugged distractedly, his free hand motioning to the readings on his computer. "I have no idea," he admitted after a brief pause. "A long, long time. There's no way to tell for sure."
"Not Wraith though," Ronon concluded, looking the pods over, his finger twitching slightly at the trigger of his gun at the mention of Wraith.
Teyla nodded in agreement, as did Sheppard.
McKay rolled his eyes. "Obviously," he snapped. "Thank you for stating the obvious."
Teyla rested her hand on Ronon's lower arm out of habit, but Ronon merely huffed at the doctor, turning away to gaze through the entrance.
"Well, we can't leave them here. We'll have to take them back to Atlantis one by one – 'cause they're not going to fit in the jumper at the same time. Rodney, see if you can find out how they can be moved safely. Let's head home."
-To Be Continued-
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