A/N: Brook: no worries - I am happy you liked the fic! Sequel? Maybe, we'll see :)


* denotes host/symbiote internal communication


Next day.

Since they would not be staying at the inn anymore, and would presumable have to remain on the planet for another several days, they returned briefly to the SGC to get supplies and camping gear.

They arrived at the Ancient ruins around mid-afternoon, having made good speed from the Stargate. Having quickly set up camp, hidden inside a cave in the nearest rock face, they began searching the ruins for signs of Ancient technology that had survived.

Teal'c and Mitchell were tasked with patrolling the perimeter, looking for signs of enemies or spies from the village. Until and unless any technology was found, Sam helped them as well.

Meanwhile, Daniel, Vala, and Martouf/Lantash went through the ruins. Some of them were still pretty well preserved, but much was rubble. This was a good thing since it limited the area they had to search - still, Daniel believed it would easily take a week for them to make sure they did not miss anything. Martouf/Lantash highly doubted they would be left alone for that long, not with people in the village having been alerted to their interest. Personally, they were particularly worried that Sam would be hurt or captured by Eris.

It was late evening of the second day, when Daniel happened to touch a small stone carving inside one of the best kept buildings. A part of the wall moved aside, revealing a room full of strange things, most of which Daniel had no idea what was. One thing was clear to him, though - it was Ancient technology.

He called for the others, and Vala and Martouf/Lantash joined him, quickly followed by Sam who had heard his yell as well.

"What have you found, Daniel?" Sam wondered.

"Not sure, but it's Ancient technology. Could you take a look?"

Sam went to a nearby, large device. It was rather odd looking. She spent some time examining it. "I don't know with certainty, but I think it may be some sort of auto-defense - or perhaps a shield generator? Too bad we cannot turn it on - we need someone with the Ancient gene for that."

"Both Lantash and I have it, so unless it is one of those technologies coded not to work for symbiotes, we should be able to activate it."

"You both have the Ancient gene?" She looked incredulous.

"Yes. We found out some months ago."

"Okay. Please try to activate it, then." Sam stepped aside, wondering if the Ancient gene in Lantash came from Egeria or from the man who had fathered the batch he was part of. In either case, several of the Tok'ra might have the gene. It was absolutely worth looking into.

Martouf touched the device and it immediately lit up. A holographic screen appeared, showing several dots. Some obviously represented themselves, but there was a large group of dots approaching from the outside as well. The screen changed to show Jaffa. It was clear they were just outside the building.

"Oh, shit!" Daniel exclaimed.

"Does that thing have any defensive capabilities?" Sam asked.

"Yes...I just need a minute..." Martouf replied, his concentration on the device.

"Now would be a good time!" Vala shouted, as the first of the Jaffa came through the doorway.

A few minutes later, when several Jaffa had appeared and was just about to shoot at SG-1, Martouf figured out how to use the device and lots of mini-drones suddenly appeared. They immediately targeted the Jaffa, who fled as fast as they could, several of them falling.

After a few minutes - and about 30 dead Jaffa - the weapon stopped firing.

"No more ammunition," Martouf said. "We have to flee before the rest comes back - in here we are trapped." He looked at the screen. It showed 10 remaining life signs outside. They had been running away, but had now stopped.

They quickly ran out the door and towards the partial cover of a ruined building. The Jaffa had apparently realized they were no longer being shot at and were coming back.

Vala, Daniel, Martouf/Lantash, and Sam were almost to safety when Martouf/Lantash were hit in the back by a staff shot. They fell, hitting their head on some rubble.

"No!" Sam yelled, seeing what had happened. She quickly ran to Martouf, checking on his vitals. He was unconscious, but alive. She had started pulling him to safety when she saw Daniel approaching as well, coming to help.

"Daniel...no! You and Vala...get out of here!"

"But..."

"Now! Get to the Stargate. Inform the SGC. Run!" Sam yelled. With one more look at them, Vala and Daniel ran as Sam dragged Martouf and Lantash to safety. She aimed her P-90 at the approaching Jaffa and fired. She was determined to hold them back long enough for Daniel and Vala to get away, at least.

Sam managed to kill one of the Jaffa and wound another, but they had apparently called for backup and she was badly out-numbered. Eventually, she was shot and fell, unconscious, to the ground beside Martouf/Lantash.

-
Meanwhile, a group of the Jaffa had returned to their Lord Eris with news about the Ancient weapon, and bringing Mitchell and Teal'c as prisoners. Her first prime proudly announced their success.

"My Lord." Clearchos kneeled. "I bring you as prisoners two of the six strangers the villagers reported had gone to the ruins. My men are currently capturing the other four. They managed to find a room with a strange weapon and activate it. Now this weapon is yours, my Lord." He turned towards the door. "Bring in the prisoners!"

Teal'c and Mitchell were half-dragged into the room.

"As you can see, one is a Jaffa," Clearchos announced.

"Yes. He seems to be the first prime of Apophis. Interesting. Are there other Jaffa among the intruders?"

"No, my Lord. The others are all humans."

Eris turned to Teal'c and Mitchell who had now been brought before her and forced to kneel.

"Tell me...what is Apophis's first prime doing here? What kind of treachery is this?" Suddenly realizing something, she thundered. "Trickery indeed. You have no symbiote. So...you only pretend to be a Jaffa! Insolence!"

Mitchell and Teal'c looked at each other before Teal'c turned to the Goa'uld.

"I am indeed a Jaffa, but like many of my brethren, I am no longer dependent on the children of the false gods!"

"Blasphemy. As we all know, that is impossible. No Jaffa can live without a primta."

"A bit out of the loop, are we? Forgot to pay the subscription fee for Goa'uld news, did we?" Mitchell asked.

"Insolent human!" Eris said, obviously only having grasped as much of what he said that she understood she was being insulted. "Which god rules on your world?"

"None. We kicked their asses out a long time ago. I'm from Earth - that's the Tau'ri to you. You know, we've killed a lot of you guys...oh...Ra, Apophis,...Hathor,..." he looked at Teal'c who smiled gleefully, "...and several others of those guys. Most Jaffa are free now."

"How dare you spread such lies! Gods cannot be killed. To claim that mere mortals could have done so is the height of impudence. For this you shall die, horribly...but not until you have confessed all your erroneous thoughts."

"Want all the information you can get before you torture us to death, hm? You know, you really should talk to accounting about that subscription. You obviously need it."

"Take the human slave to the dungeons. I shall deal with him personally later. For now, I will talk a little with my 'Jaffa' friend here." She made a dismissive gesture at her first prime. Then she suddenly thought of something. "Make sure those other humans are captured, and brought here."

"Of course, my Lord. I will kill them myself if they try to get away."

"NO!" Eris had realized she needed as much information as possible about the outside world. She had obviously been isolated for too long. "We are feeling...merciful today. Make sure they are alive and in good condition when they come here...use the sarcophagus if they resist."

"I will take care of it myself." He bowed deeply, before grabbing hold of Mitchell's right arm and half-pulling him out of the throne room.