"Are you familiar with staffs, RupertGiles?" Teal'c tilted his head and gestured to the practice weapons rack that ran along one wall of the matted area.
Rupert lowered his now half empty bottle of water and nodded. His grin still as broad as it had been, he set both the towel and water bottle down and headed towards the mats practically bouncing on the balls of his feet. Teal'c tossed him a staff when he got near enough.
"Are ya'll sure you want to do this now?" Cam looked a bit concerned. "Giles just got done with one session, Teal'c. He might not be up to sparring with you just yet."
Teal'c quirked an eyebrow in Cam's direction. "RupertGiles does not appear to be unduly exhausted."
He then cocked his head at Rupert. "Do you wish to postpone this encounter, RupertGiles?"
Giles grinned wickedly at Teal'c. "No, Teal'c. I'm quite ready to go whenever you are."
Teal'c nodded and the battle was on. Teal'c started with moves that were slower than his natural speed. Rupert countered this blows easily, and made several swipes of his own. Things sped up as the match continued, both coming close to landing blows, but neither actually landing one. Teal'c finally connected with a solid blow to the side that knocked Giles back a few inches. Instead of doubling over in pain like many of the onlookers expected, Rupert responded with a sharp jab of his staff catching Teal'c in the torso just above his pouch. Both broke combat for just a second to recover and reanalyze their attacks. When the battle was met again it was slightly more ferocious than before.
The onlookers watched in stunned silence as the newest book geek managed to keep up with one of the best warriors on base. After a few minutes of intense battle, Teal'c separated Giles from his weapon, and swept his feet out from under him. Rupert, knowing that this was only a sparring session, decided to concede the match. As it was he was going to have to go home, soak in a hot bath, and use some of the bruise balm that Tara had sent with him. It was worth it though. He hadn't had this much fun since Spike had last been home.
"You are indeed a warrior, RupertGiles. It would be my pleasure to spar with you more often." Teal'c offered his hand to Rupert and pulled him to his feet.
"Holy shit, man, that was beautiful." Cam bounced on his feet a bit, grabbed Rupert's water bottle and towel and handed them to Giles. He threw an arm around Rupert's shoulders.
"Do you know how many people can go toe-to-toe like that against the big guy? Not very many that's for sure. You picked a good one this time, Danny."
Sam had a rather bemused smile on her face. "Where on earth did you learn to fight like that?"
Rupert fought the urge to blush. It'd been a while since his fighting skills were last deemed extraordinary. "I must admit that in addition to my formal study of martial arts, I have had my fair share of brawls and tight scrapes. Like I said before the Council often needed its field historians to venture into areas that were not friendly to outsiders, and made sure we were able to take care of ourselves in such situations."
"And here I thought history was boring." Vala leered. Apparently she shared Anya's enjoyment of sweaty men.
"A common and generally accurate perception, I assure you. I just happened to work for one of the few historical societies that also looked to study modern folklore and culture in addition to the historical ones. They were also one of the few that strived to maintain the gentleman adventurer cliché so common in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Since my family had been involved in the group for generations, I was raised with the skills needed to find employment there as soon as I was of age. I must admit it has meant a rather interesting life." Rupert flashed a gleeful grin and finished off his water.
"No wonder you don't have a problem with us having to learn this crap. You already know it." Dr. Matthews, the rather obnoxious physicist from the day before, sneered at Giles.
Rupert, having been greatly influenced by his children, rolled his eyes. "That is it exactly. I agreed with this training yesterday not because I like to remain among the living, but because I wanted to show off my skills. Really, sir, I would think that as a scientist you would be aware of the fact that one never stops learning, regardless of discipline. Martial arts and survival skills are no different. I look forward to learning from our esteemed teachers as they know moves and styles that I do not."
Several members of the group tried, unsuccessfully, to suppress snickers, and Dr. Matthews face turned a rather amusing shade of red. Rupert almost regretted his sarcasm as soon as the words were out of his mouth. He knew he was not gaining a friend with his behavior, but honestly the man was a moron. Hopefully he would wash out before he could get someone else killed with his arrogance.
Danny, ever the diplomat, decided to intervene. "Well now that this session is done, how about we go get some lunch?"
Lunch was a lively affair. Rupert sat with SG-1 and conversation flowed easily between them. Rupert shared some of the tamer stories from his youth and early watcher days while the members of SG-1 shared some of their adventures. Rupert's favorite part of the conversation though was when Teal'c looked at him very seriously and asked if he had ever seen Star Wars.
"I feel that you would appreciate the tale of valiant knights fighting against an oppressing darkness. Indeed it is one of my favorite of such Earth tales."
Rupert had seen the original trilogy back when they had come out in the 70's and early 80's, and had watched them a few times since. He had not seen any of the newer ones, though, nor the re-mastered editions of the original trilogy. Teal'c thought that this was a great tragedy, and so the team planned a Star Wars marathon for their upcoming days off.
After lunch the group headed to the base's firing range. Once again Rupert marveled at the size of the base. All the normal base buildings, save for the Base Exchange, were located in this underground complex: a full infirmary, complete gym, recreational facilities, and firing range. In addition it had the room that held the Stargate and all the labs and rooms designated specifically for functions related to gate travel.
As they walked to the firing range Cam asked questions regarding the group's experience with guns. There were a few, like Rupert, who had basic experience, but no one could claim expert marksmanship. As he explained to Cam, he was familiar with hunting rifles, bows and crossbows from all the times he went hunting with his Grandfather growing up. Hunting was a typical autumnal and winter pastime for the established gentry in Britain, and the Giles had been landed gentry for generations. Until his paternal grandfather's death when he was sixteen, Giles had routinely hunted mundane creatures as well as supernatural ones.
However, he had no experience with handguns and was quite a bit rusty when it came to hunting rifles. The military's standard 9 millimeter and P-90 were a bit outside of his experience. He paid careful attention to the instructor. Like with the sparring, when it came his turn to shoot he focused his breathing, centering himself. Rather than make the mistake of hurrying, he calmly aimed each shot. Breathe in, aim, exhale and fire. His shots were not as good as he would have liked, but there were far better than most of his peers. Apparently Nurse Pierce's husband was a marine, and they were both avid hunters. She was a bit more in practice than Rupert. She was also more familiar with the pistols. Her confidence and no-nonsense attitude reminded him a bit of Buffy. He rather felt sorry for any patient who gave her guff.
After the firing range, the group had another session on military ranks and then checked in with their department heads before calling it a day. Starting tomorrow he would be spending more time with Daniel in addition to the Geek Survival 101 workshops. All in all it had been a good day, albeit a long one. He headed back to his house, looking forward to a quiet dinner, a hot bath, and some relaxation time with a good book.