Title: No Simple Recon Mission

Author: Jedi Buttercup

Disclaimer: The words are mine; the world is not.

Summary: One, two, skip a few... how does the old rhyme go? 350 words.

Spoilers: Stargate SG-1 10.6, "200"

Notes: A companion to the SG-1 gen alphabet soup tale "G is for Gate (The One, Two Story)" which uncovered the roots of Mitchell's counting habit.

One, two, skip a few... how does the old rhyme go?

Cam has never really shaken that first tingle of awe, the jolt of satisfaction he feels every time he steps into the great rippling mirror of the Stargate. Maybe it's different for those whose first strides into looking glass country brought them loss; who treat it as simply an exotic means of transportation; or who see it as a technological marvel to be dissected and understood.

But for Lieutenant Colonel Cameron Mitchell, it is and always will be a symbol of everything he's fought so hard for; a source of wonder right out of the stories of his granddad's reclusive friend. He completely understands why the Goa'uld injected its metal into their bloodstreams, trying to harness its power for their own.

That isn't to say the wonders it shows him are always apple pie and rainbows:

...Forty-one: the Sodan Warriors. Seventy-seven: the Galarans. Eighty-eight: his old friend Bryce. And ninety-one: a first-class seat to the spectacle of mutually assured destruction.

But sometimes he gets to hold Excalibur in his hands, or save an entire community from destruction.

...Ninety-nine, one hundred. One hundred and fifty: following in King Arthur's footsteps to Camelot.

It's worth keeping count, he figures, in a time and place when so little else is worth celebrating, recapturing a little of the wide-eyed enthusiasm he's read between the lines of the early years of the program. Honoring each mission, whether triumph or tragedy, setback or success. The shiny surface may have worn off Jackson and the others... but it's a role he can still fulfill, and gladly.

This is what it's all about, Cam acknowledges as the chevrons relock one year and thirty-five days after his initial trip. They think he hasn't noticed them noticing, but he's not completely wet behind the ears. Script reading? His grandma's hind end; they're humoring him. Good thing he doesn't mind.

"All right. Let's go check out the mysteries of P2C-106," he grins, wondering who all O'Neill's drafted for his party.

Then he steps forward, team at his side.

Two hundred.