(NOTE: This is an original idea of mine. I have only watched up to the end of Season 1, so apologies if something appears like this in later episodes. The idea of a "blanketed part of land" is one of my own. Not copied from any tv shows - as far as my knowledge goes.)
Teyla knew they weren't going to arrive back at the campsite before dark. As she trudged through the knee high fields of grass, she shivered as a cold gasp of wind twisted around them in a desperate attempt to scare the travelers away from something they should not have been near. The new planet they had been exploring had a unique and shocking side to it; the air was always nearing the negative degrees and they were losing a constant battle against the wind. She shrugged as she pulled her coat closer to her, and her fingers ached as they held her P-90 close to her side. Teeth chattering, she turned around to look to Rodney who was trudging up the sluggish hillside even slower than she was, his arms wrapped tightly around himself. They hadn't gained much knowledge in the morning's exploration, other than the fact that the cold wind hadn't just been a one off – it was a permanent horror. Sheppard was walking next to Rodney, his jacket also wrapped tightly around himself as he rubbed his hands together in a miserable attempt to warm them.
"Are you sure…that…we're heading in the right…direction?" Rodney questioned as he shuddered from the cold.
"I hope so," Sheppard replied, looking up to the sky and eyeing the dark clouds that were approaching as he tried to stop his teeth chattering.
"What? Oh. Translation; No, I have no idea where we are." Teyla rolled her eyes as she listened to Rodney and Sheppard resume their usual argumentative relationship.
"Oh, so you're the leader now," Sheppard replied, his tone sarcastic, "if you're so sure of where we are and where we aren't, why don't you lead the way?"
The morning's exploration had been torture to all of them, once they realized they were lost. It had been a simple expedition – get out there, look around, head back and fly back to Atlantis. Everything went to plan apart from the point that somewhere amongst those ideas, something had gone horribly, horribly wrong.
"So we're in a huge field, with no idea where we are, and no idea where we've been," Rodney had commented in a high pitched tone when Sheppard had announced mournfully that they were lost.
"Well we came from somewhere," Ford had commented, "and we know there's a pretty strong energy force round here somewhere. That's the only reason why we're lost."
"Oh, explain?" Rodney started snapping.
"I mean, that's why we don't know where we are. It's knocking out all our navigational equipment," Ford replied.
"He's got a point you know," Sheppard pointed out when Rodney rolled his eyes.
"A very sharp one. One that he keeps bottled up and he pushes it into my mind whenever he feels like it," Rodney snapped, exasperated.
"Break it up McKay. Let it go," Sheppard said in a warning tone, that he tried to phrase in a calm way, but came out more as a command.
Teyla kept quiet looked around. The dry and barren hills in the distance were of no use to them, for they all looked the same.
"Is it possible that we have somehow entered a blanketed part of land? I do not recall crossing over a hill." She commented, worriedly.
"Well if we have, I've never seen anything like it." Sheppard said, stopping mid stride to turn to look at her.
"Of course we haven't. We've been on earth most of our lives, remember?" Rodney snapped, and then dropped it when Teyla glared at him.
Sheppard chuckled, "I do remember Rodney, but that isn't what Teyla was getting at. It is possible, right?"
Rodney sighed. "I suppose it could be, but there must be one hell of a strong energy field for this to occur."
"Surely we'd have noticed something? We've been here three days, and nothing's been out of the ordinary." Ford commented.
"Nothing out of the ordinary?" Rodney mimicked. "What about those blasted bats that attacked us when we entered the cave when we first arrived?"
Sheppard growled, "Rodney, calm it down."
"No! We're lost in the middle of no-where, with some psycho bats that have been attacking us and you expect me to be calm?"
Teyla nodded. "It is in your best interests to calm, Rodney. Being worked up about this ordeal will do no good to any of us."
"We're lost. It's a bit hard to be calm when you realized you drank your last cup of coffee or when you sat in your last comfortable chair," sighed Rodney, his voice fading away.
Sheppard spun around, "I didn't say we weren't getting home! There's no need to go to those lengths, we will get home."
"We'll… we'll follow our noses."
"You sound like a dog, Sheppard."
"Who cares if I am? What if I was some great lone mountain wolf? Would it make any difference to our current situation?" Sheppard snapped, waving his cold hands around. "Stop making this situation worse, just shut up Rodney!"
The cold silence crept into their senses as they trudged slowly through the fields.
"This stuff is itchy sir," Ford said, stopping to scratch his arms.
"See, I told you! We need to get out of this field!" Rodney muttered.
Sheppard stepped towards him. "What do you think I'm trying to do? Play hide and seek? Well, you're wrong."
"Is it normal for humans to fight as much as these two do, Ford?" Teyla said, choosing to speak to Ford than to interfere with Sheppard and McKay who seemed to be having immense trouble controlling their already heated tempers.
"Nope, but these two have been at each others necks from the minute we set foot in Atlantis," Ford smiled, his eyes lighting with a glimpse of happiness. Sheppard and McKay dropped the argument immediately as the first drops of rain started to fall.
"Great, just great! What else could go wrong today?" Rodney yelled, as he tipped his head back to the sky. Sheppard thought it wise to ignore this comment, clenched his jaw and set off at a faster pace through the field.
"What about this idea of it being blanketed? We must have got into this loop somehow, somewhere, but how do we get out?" stammered Ford as his breath came out in great clouds of warm air.
"Walk faster people, it's gonna get pretty cold, pretty fast," Sheppard commanded.
"I think it would be wise to continue in one direction, seeming as we've walked this far already," Teyla nodded as she walked next to Ford.
"I don't think we're actually moving as such," Rodney added, "it's more like we're in this never ending loop of one field."
"Well, do you have any suggestions as to how we prove this theory?" Sheppard asked.
"I do, sir" Ford interrupted.
"Go for it, let's see your bright idea then," Rodney muttered.
Ford pulled out one of the small explosives he carried in his safety vest. He knew it was a gamble, because if he was fired at a bullet made contact with the explosive, it was almost impossible for it not to go off. However, he was very glad that he'd brought it along. Setting the dials, he threw it as far as he could ahead of the team. Their eyes watch as it flew about 10 metres out, then disappeared.
"Wait a second…where did that go?" Sheppard asked. His question was answered within seconds, a long boom sounding behind them, that knocked them to the ground.
"You threw that… in front of you, didn't you Ford?" Rodney asked.
"Yes sir. About 8 metres… or so."
"Then how….the hell….did it get behind us?" Sheppard panted, standing up to look at the burned grass behind them.
"I'm gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that we're reaching the end of the blanket. The explosive went straight through it, doubled back to where the blanket starts and then ended up behind us." Rodney sighed, running his frozen hands over his gun as though he were nervous that something would jump out, fangs bared, and attack them.
Anger flashed across Sheppard's face. "So, what you're saying is this: we're going to walk into this blanket thing, and end up exactly where we started?"
"Something like that," Rodney sighed, yawning.
"How do we get out of this 'blanket thing' then? If that explosive just doubled back, then how do we get out?"
"We've been walking in the same direction, maybe we should try walking back the way we've come? If we keep going forward, we're going to keep activating the loop." Teyla suggested in a hopeful tone.
"Alright, since I'm out of options, let's try that idea," Sheppard declared, turned around and marched determinedly back the way they'd come. Rodney clenched his jaw, rolled his eyes and followed. Teyla and Ford followed up behind them, huddled close together from the cold.
"Sir, how about we try throwing another explosive? We'll be able to see if it doubles back behind us, or if it disappears completely?"
"Go for it Ford."
On Sheppard's word, Ford pulled his next explosive from his jacket and dialed it up. Throwing it with all his force, it whistled as it battled the cold winds.
"Watch it!" Sheppard yelled, "If that wind's strong enough, it could come back and explode on us!" Sheppard ducked. The small metal bullet shaped package glided steadily through the air a good 30 metres, then disappeared from site.
"Run!" Sheppard yelled, pushing Teyla, Ford and Rodney ahead. "If it comes back through the loop, we're dead!" They ran through the field, the dry grass crackling beneath their boots as they tried to get as far away as possible. No sound exploded behind them, so they slowed to a fast paced walk.
"Do you think it left the loop?" Teyla asked, looking behind them.
"I sure hope so," Sheppard growled.
"Hope so?" Rodney mimicked. At this remark, Sheppard grabbed Rodney by his safety vest and pushed him forwards where the end of the blanket should have been. Rodney emitted a very surprised squawk as he disappeared.
"Well, well, well. Looks like we've found it," Sheppard grinned, stepping forwards. Teyla and Ford ran to catch up and they all lapsed through the blanket, falling onto the dry gravel of the entrance to the cave.
"We made it," Ford grinned, happiness sounding in his voice. Relief flooded through Teyla's veins as she recognized the puddle-jumper.
"What do you lot say to getting out of here?" asked Sheppard, turning around to watch them.
"Let's go before anything else happens," Rodney's voice shook as he headed towards the puddle-jumper.
Sheppard leant close towards Teyla, "See, told you he was a scaredy-cat."
"I heard that Sheppard, and I didn't like it." Rodney yelled from the ship.
Sheppard's sarcastic tone returned to his voice, "Too bad, you're stuck with me for another 5 hours as we fly back to Atlantis."
"Oh, I'm so excited. Can't wait." Rodney replied, his voice also lathered with sarcasm.
Teyla looked at Ford, and laughed.