Your wait is over! It is here, Madness at the Gate! I thank you all for waiting patiently. I had a lot of trouble figuring out just how I was going to go about writing this. This is actually the seventh draft I've written! But bah! You didn't come here to listen to me babbling excuses. Please, enjoy this fic!
General George S. Hammond was sitting at his desk in the SGC, deep within the Cheyenne Mountains. He didn't like to be strong-armed into doing things, so being forced to bring this British man to his base was annoying. However, he couldn't deny that having this person under his command would be an incredible asset. He gave an audible hum as he stared down at the file, scratching his bald head while trying to figure out where he should place him.
Three hours later, it had been decided, and Colonel Jack O'Neill entered Major Samantha Carter's lab, where he found the rest of his team waiting for him, consisting of Carter, Dr. Daniel Jackson, and Teal'c. O'Neill was reading the file in his hand with a look of resignation on his face.
"So, I'm guessing you've all heard that we'll be getting a new team member?" O'Neill said, getting nods from his team. "Apparently, this guy's pretty young, but smart as hell. He's Britain's leading expert on the Stargate, which doesn't exactly say much, but they've strong-armed Hammond into letting him come here."
"How young?" Daniel asked curiously.
"Says here he's no older than twenty," O'Neill said, reading the file. "Yet he's an M.D., he's got Ph.D's in Physics, Astrophysics, Chemistry, Biology, the works..." He looked up at the others, looking a bit confused. "How the hell can he have so many degrees, and be only twenty years old? I mean, it'd take longer to get so much as an M.D., wouldn't it?"
"Could his file have been faked?" Carter suggested.
"Doubtful," O'Neill said as he shook his head. "Oh, listen to this, his personality profile... 'Although he displays incredibly sadistic, hedonistic, and immoral traits, his genius is unparalleled. He is on a constant search for knowledge and understanding, and as such sees everything in existence, including himself, as research material. He also seems to have developed a surgical addiction in his quest for knowledge, having operated on himself in order to research the human body. Taking joy in the intimidation of others, he has left his stitches in.' It goes on like this for a while. The guy's a nutcase..."
"Can I see that, sir?" Carter asked, holding out her hand. O'Neill nodded and handed the file over to the Major, who took it and looked it over, her eyes landing on the accompanying picture.
The person in the picture looked, quite frankly, very intimidating. He had wild, raven black hair, droopy-looking, green eyes behind a pair of glasses, a cigarette dangling from his mouth, which was curved into a somewhat sadistic smirk, and he had stitching going across his face. His hand was holding onto an almost comically large, screw-like bolt that was sticking through his head. Seeing the picture, her eyes widened.
"Hey, this is Harry Potter!"
"Who?" Daniel asked, blinking.
"I am unfamiliar with that name," Teal'c added, sounding curious. Well, as curious as Teal'c could sound, anyway.
"This guy is supposed to be the smartest person of his generation," Carter explained, looking a bit excited as she looked up at her teammates. "He wrote a paper at seventeen on wormhole physics that I couldn't even dream of coming up with. He's been working with the British government on some top-secret project. I can only guess that it was the Stargate. And the fact that he's so good at it, even without having had an actual Stargate to study, should say a lot about him. He even invented a device that will stave off deterioration of his brain, keeping it in pristine condition until the day he dies."
"Well, that won't really mean squat if he'll try to cut us open in our sleep on his..." O'Neill started, then leaned over to look at the file again. "...constant search for knowledge."
"I don't think we have to worry about that, sir," Carter said, shaking her head. "I mean, he's bound to have found out all he can about the human body by now. I think he'd be more interested in what's out there."
She made a gesture for the ceiling.
"Then shouldn't we be worried that he might jeopardize intergalactic relations?" Daniel asked, clearing his throat. "I mean, if we meet a people who are vastly different from us... a people humans have never encountered before..."
"I am trusting you people to keep him on a tight leash," came General Hammond's voice as he stepped into the lab. Immediately, O'Neill and Carter stood at attention. "At ease," Hammond said, then nodded toward the file. "Whether we like it or not, Dr. Potter will be coming here, as relations between the US and Britain are a bit strained right now. You see, we never shared the secret of the Stargate with them. Instead, someone in the SGC leaked information about it. We couldn't deny it, as we were presented with evidence, and now they are forcing us to accept at least one of their experts, or there will be consequences."
"But why SG-1, sir?" O'Neill asked curiously. "I mean, if we don't want him here..."
"I placed Dr. Potter in SG-1 because despite the fact that he has been forced upon us, I won't deny that he has skills that will be very useful to your team. Not to mention the fact that you are probably the only ones I can trust to keep him under control. Also, it will show Britain that we see their sending of their expert as a blessing, instead of a curse."
SG-1 stood there in silence for a while, looking grim. Then, O'Neill picked up the file and once more scanned the man's psychological profile.
"Something tells me that I'm going to have to get a shrink after I've met this guy..." O'Neill muttered.
"Don't worry too much, Colonel," Hammond said reassuringly. "Although I am officially assigning him to SG-1, he will not be going out into the field with you very often. His expertise is best used here, and he will, occasionally, be making trips to Area 51 to help there."
Meanwhile, in an apartment not far from the Cheyenne Mountains, Dr. Harry James Potter, a twenty-year old scientist, who some, if not most, would call mad, put on his black shirt, buttoning it up to cover the stitching on his abdomen and chest. He left the top button undone, which showed the top of the vertical stitching, along with the X stitched into his throat. Of course, there were still other stitches also visible on him. The most eye-catching was the long stitching going from the top of the middle of his forehead, down to the bridge of his nose, and curving to the right, stopping an inch or two below his earlobe. He also had lots of stitching on his hands.
Picking up the lab coat that was hanging on a coat hook in the hallway, he put it on and looked himself over in the mirror. He stared at himself for a good minute or two, then smoothed out the coat and gave a wide grin.
"I'm ready," he said happily. Just then, footsteps were heard, and Harry looked to his left to see his girlfriend, Nymphadora 'Nym' Tonks, coming out of the bedroom, wearing nothing but a pair of panties and one of Harry's button-up shirts, which had the top two and bottom three buttons undone. She walked up to Harry and gave him a soft kiss while reaching up and turning the bolt in his head.
"You look ready," she said with a smile as she broke the kiss.
Harry's grin, if possible, widened even more as he stretched, giving off a pleased noise.
"I'm finally going to see the Stargate! Finally going to go out there, discover alien life, and study it!"
"It's about time, too," Tonks said, smirking. "You were starting to drive me nuts with your lack of research material."
"You sure you don't mind transferring to the American Auror Office?" Harry asked as he wrapped his arms around Tonks' waist and pulled her closer.
"Not as long as I'm in the same country as you," she said happily, getting up on her tippy-toes to give him another soft kiss.
"Well, technically, oftentimes we won't be in the same country. In fact, we'll be on different planets..."
"You know what I mean, you prat," Tonks said, smacking Harry on the chest.
Harry, as always, managed to skillfully leap to another topic without finishing the first.
"I wonder how Adrian is doing..."
"He's fine. Now, you're going to be late," Tonks said, pointing to the clock visible on the living room wall from the hallway. Harry stared at it for a couple of seconds, then nodded.
"I do believe I will be, if I don't leave right now," he said, humming. Did he want to get a quickie with Tonks, or did he want to be on time?
Harry, who had been standing with his hands clasped behind his back, looked round to see a bald man, slightly overweight, with a no nonsense look on his face approaching him. He was wearing a spotless, short-sleeved uniform, and he didn't at all look happy to see Harry.
"I take it you're General Hammond?" Harry asked, raising an eyebrow. The man nodded as he reached Harry. Then, the man stopped, and his no-nonsense expression was replaced with surprise, as he stared at the bolt through Harry's head.
Harry stood there in silence for a few moments. Then, he cleared his throat, a small grin appearing on his face.
"It's a bit different, seeing it in person, inn'it?"
"I suppose it is..." Hammond mumbled, then shook his head to clear it, holding out his hand for Harry to shake, which he did. He had to admit, despite Hammond's clear dislike for him, the man was polite enough to at least shake his hand, which was admirable.
As the two let go of each other, Hammond gestured for Harry to follow him, and made his way down the concrete corridor leading into Cheyenne Mountains, heading for an elevator.
"I want to make it clear, Dr. Potter, you are not here by my choice."
"Obviously," Harry drawled, waving him off as they got into the elevator. "The only reason you allowed Britain's top expert on the Stargate to come here was because the secret of it leaked, and because you kept that secret from even your allies, relations are now a bit strained."
"Well, General, believe it or not, I am not here to cause trouble for you. Quite on the contrary, I'm here to help."
"Are you really?" Hammond asked skeptically as the elevator headed steadily downward. "I've read your file, Doctor."
"And I've read yours, General. Files can be deceptive. For example, your file claims that you always follow the rules and proper procedures, but I can tell from just looking at you, and studying mission reports, that the file is very wrong."
"Are you trying to tell me that your file was wrong about you? That you are not a sadistic, hedonistic, immoral man on a constant search for knowledge and understanding, who also has a surgical addiction?"
"Oh, no, that was spot on. But it left out the fact that although I do many things for personal gain, I do obey my orders, provided, of course, that they aren't too outrageous."
"Mind telling me why you were late?" he asked as the elevator beeped, the doors opening to show... more concrete corridors. Harry shrugged.
"I got a quickie from my girlfriend."
Obviously, Hammond had been expecting some form of apology, or a lie, as he flinched in surprise at Harry's bluntness. Harry took out a cigarette and lit it with a lighter, as he wasn't allowed to show that he was magic.
"There's no smoking in here," Hammond said. Harry, however, just clapped his hands happily.
"So! Where's the Stargate?"
"This way," Hammond said grumpily, leading the way down another corridor and through a door that revealed a set of stairs. "This is the Stargate Operations room," he said as they climbed the stairs and found themselves in a room that was filled with computers of various sizes. In the front of the room was a long window, which revealed a big room on the other side, and in that room was...
"The Stargate," Harry whispered in fascination as he moved over to the window, staring at the giant ring. He noticed that all activity in the room had ceased, and he looked around to find the people there staring at him. A muscle under his left eye twitched. "Yeah, I've got a bolt through my head, wanna fight about it?"
Everyone jumped at being caught staring and nervously went back to what they were doing before Harry came in.
A red light started blinking, and the Stargate suddenly started spinning, catching Harry's interest.
"Unscheduled off-world activation," a man, also bald, wearing glasses, said, sitting at one of the computers.
"Close the iris," Hammond said as he moved up to stand next to Harry, who stared at the gate as twenty overlapping blades swung outwards from within the Stargate, forming a shield over the opening in the Gate like a leaf shutter. Harry watched in fascination as the final chevron lit up, and a 'kawoosh' was heard from behind the iris. Hammond looked at Harry. "The iris is something we developed to avoid getting any unwanted visitors. It-"
"Hm..." Harry interrupted, narrowing his eyes as he stared at the iris. "To allow the wormhole to form, you'd need to keep it away from it, but close enough to the event horizon to not allow the traveler to materialize... You must keep it dangerously close for that. I'd say... three micrometers?"
"Less than three," Hammond said, sounding impressed with Harry's knowledge.
"Receiving SG-12's IDC, sir," the man at the computer said.
"Open the iris," Hammond commanded, and the man nodded, pressing his hand against a palm scanner. The iris opened, and within moments, four people came through, wearing military clothing.
"So, according to the Prime Minister, I'm supposed to become part of one of your SG teams occasionally?" Harry said, his hands behind his back.
"The President has informed me of that as well," Hammond said with a nod. "I have decided to place you with SG-1, where I think you will do the most good."
Harry blinked. "Good?"
Hammond turned to Harry and looked at him sternly.
"Doctor, while I don't like to be strong-armed into doing things, the fact remains that the English Prime Minister has nothing but the highest praise to give regarding your intellect and physical capabilities, along with your creativity. I consider that to be a great asset at my disposal, and will deal with it the way I see fit."
"I see..." Harry said, puffing on his cigarette thoughtfully. "Very well. However, if you think I'm going to wear a uniform, you're sorely mistaken."
"Somehow, I got the feeling that would be the case," Hammond said, nodding. "Now come on, I'll introduce you to your team. They are waiting in the briefing room."
"Lead the way, General," Harry said, gesturing for the door.
Hammond led Harry, instead of back down the stairs, up another set of stairs, through a corridor whose wall to the right was glass, and looking into it, Harry saw something like a conference room, with a long, black table in the center of it. At the table sat four people.
One was an older man with graying hair, but with every look of a seasoned soldier on his face. He had a scar on his left eyebrow, and had a look of a kind of bored amusement on his face. Next to him sat a black man, very muscular, with a gold emblem on his forehead and a soul patch on his chin.
Across from these two sat a man with short, brown hair and glasses, sitting next to a woman with medium-length, blond hair. Hammond led Harry through a door leading into the room, and as soon as they entered, the woman and the older man stood up.
"At ease," Hammond said, and the two sat down again. "SG-1, I would like you all to meet the newest member of your group, Dr. Harry Potter. You have all heard the circumstances around his placement in your team."
"Major Samantha Carter," Harry spoke up before Hammond could introduce them, walking up to Carter and holding out his hand. "I've read a lot about you."
"Likewise, Doctor," Carter said, smiling, though like everyone else Harry had shaken hands with, she was without a doubt a bit unnerved by the feeling of the stitches on his hand. "I'm a big fan of your work."
"All my work?" Harry asked with a raised eyebrow, a small smirk on his face.
"At least your work regarding wormhole physics."
"Well, you seem to be familiar with Major Carter already," Hammond said, then gestured for the rest of the team. "This is Dr. Daniel Jackson," he said, pointing at the man with the glasses. He waved. "This is Colonel Jack O'Neill," he introduced, pointing at the older man. Then, he pointed to the black man. "And this is Teal'c."
The black man bowed his head in greeting.
"Pleasure," Harry said, reaching up and turning the bolt. He saw that Jackson looked a bit fascinated with it, while O'Neill looked like he didn't know whether to be fascinated or disgusted. "So!" Harry said, clapping his hands together again. "What now?"
"Now, you will need to meet Dr. Fraiser for a physical," Hammond told Harry, who had to suppress a twitch. He got one not too long ago, so getting one again was annoying. "I'll take you to the infirmary."
"I still can't believe you've cut yourself like this..."
Dr. Janet Fraiser was stern, yet kind-looking woman with medium-length, brown hair. She wore a lab coat, which made her all the more attractive to Harry, but never mind that... Harry grinned.
"All in the name of science, I assure you."
"And the reason why the stitches are still there?"
"I see..." Fraiser muttered peering into Harry's eyes. She seemed to be looking for something, and apparently found it, because she leaned back and looked him up and down. "Are you sure you're alright, Mr. Potter?"
"Don't worry, the bolt doesn't hurt."
"No, that's not what I mean. Your eyes look a little... distant."
"Oh, you mean, am I alright mentally?" Harry said in realization, and Fraiser nodded. "Well, Doc, I'm as healthy as I'll ever be."
"How is that, anyway?" Fraiser asked curiously. "I mean, you're healthier than any of the soldiers on this base, which is saying a lot, considering you're a scientist, not a soldier."
"Well, you know what they say, Doc, a healthy soul resides in a sound mind, and a sound body."
"I have actually never heard anyone say that," Fraiser admitted, and Harry furrowed his brow.
"Really? Oh yeah, I think I'm the one who came up with that saying." Harry laughed, while Fraiser just stared at him strangely.
"I ask again, are you sure you're alright?"
"I'm perfectly fine," Harry said. Then, he shrugged. "Although, I should stop going long periods of time without sleep," he admitted slowly, getting off the hospital bed and starting to put on his shirt. "Are we done here?"
"We're done, for now," Fraiser said. "Oh, first I'd like a blood sample."
Later found Harry poking his head into Samantha Carter's lab. He reached up and knocked once. Carter, who had been peering through a microscope, looked up and smiled at seeing Harry, who took a step inside.
"What are you working on?" Harry asked curiously.
"Oh, you know, this and that," Carter said with a shrug as Harry walked up to her, gesturing for the microscope.
"You mind if I...?"
"Oh, go right ahead," Carter said, moving to the side to allow Harry to peer through the microscope, humming.
"This is my blood," he said, seeing the very familiar blood under the microscope.
"Yes, it is," Carter said, watching Harry closely. "It's not normal."
"So it isn't."
"Care to tell me what all those anomalies Dr. Fraiser found in your blood are?"
"Very well," Harry said, lifting his head from the microscope to look at Carter, a small smile on his face. "My blood isn't one hundred percent human."
"Meaning, I changed it," Harry said with a shrug. "I have always been interested in improvement. Making a man stronger than normal, helping him remain strong forever, helping him remain smart, and so on. So, I discovered in my studies that humans are inherently very weak, despite our great potential for power. I started researching DNA. I found a way to implant other DNA into my genetic code. In my case, I used a small amount of spider DNA."
Carter's brow furrowed.
"What did that accomplish?"
"Ever read Spider-Man, Major?" Harry asked, smirking. "Now, I don't have a nifty spider sense, and I can't stick to walls, but I do have incredible physical abilities now."
"So that's why you're in such an amazing condition," Carter spoke in realization. "That... That's amazing. I mean, people have attempted it in the past, but never fully succeeded. Do you realize how this can help mankind?"
"But I won't let it," Harry said, which made Carter's eyes widen.
"Well, first of all, even if I wanted to, I wouldn't be able to share my method, as it's been classified. And second of all, it wouldn't be good if the research ended up in the wrong hands. I won't risk it."
Of course, this was a blatant lie. In all honesty, he only refused to share his research because he was an incredibly self-absorbed person, and the thought of having more people be similar to him was appalling. He liked being unique, after all.
"I see," Carter said slowly, apparently buying Harry's excuse. "They say you are very creative, Doctor, and-"
"Ah," Harry said, holding up a hand to stop Carter from speaking. "Just Harry."
"Harry," Carter corrected herself, nodding. "They say you're very creative. Your file said nothing about it, but should I assume you have some technological expertise?"
"Hey, if I can imagine it, I can pretty much build it," Harry said, grinning. "I'm very accomplished when it comes to technology," he admitted, then clapped his hands together. "So, any upcoming missions?"
"Well, Colonel O'Neill, Daniel and I will be going to the Tok'ra homeworld to set a date for a meeting between the High Councilor and the President in two hours," Carter said, making Harry blink.
"I'm not coming? Why?"
"Well..." Carter trailed off, apparently not wanting to say what Harry knew she was going to say.
"You think I wouldn't be very good for intergalactic relations. Since I've never met a Tok'ra before, you think that I'm going to capture one of them, to cut them open and study them?" he guessed, getting a flinch of surprise from Carter, who cleared her throat and nodded. Harry stared at her for a good ten seconds, then nodded. "You're not wrong."
Harry took a cigarette out of his pocket and lit it, making Carter clear her throat.
"Um, you're not allowed to smoke in here."
"So people keep telling me," Harry said, but making no move to put out his cigarette. He gave Carter a grin, then waved at her before leaving the lab.
Comfort was very important for Harry James Potter. He couldn't find it wherever he sat or lay. He needed familiarity. That was why it wouldn't have been surprising for anyone who knew him to see that Harry had brought his own operating table and caster-wheel chair into the lab provided for him at the SGC.
"What are you doing?"
Harry, who was currently laying on his operating table, slowly opened his eyes at Teal'c's question. His shirt was off, as was his lab coat, since he couldn't clean blood off it with magic while in the presence of Muggles, and a scalpel was sticking out of his chest, where it had been for the last forty-ish minutes.
"Oh, you know," Harry said with a shrug, "I got bored just sitting here, so I decided to give myself some localized anesthetics and poke around inside myself. But then I realized that I've already done it so much that I wouldn't find anything new in there, so I got bored again."
"Is that not painful?" Teal'c asked curiously as he walked up to Harry, staring down at the scalpel sticking out of his chest.
"Now that the anesthetics have worn off, you'd think so, but it's really not," Harry mumbled, staring up at the ceiling. "It's very simple, really. Just some minor manipulation of the signals going from the nerves to the brain, basically rewiring them to translate the pain as pleasure."
"So the sensation is pleasurable to you?"
"It was, but ten minutes in, it started to dull."
"Then why have you not removed it?"
Harry shrugged again and said, "Dunno. Got used to it, I suppose..." He rose to a sitting position and yanked the scalpel out, surprising Teal'c with the fact that the wound didn't bleed. "So, did you need something?"
"Indeed, Harry Potter. I understand that you have written a long theory regarding the effects of a symbiote on a Jaffa warrior?"
"I have," Harry said with a nod. "Of course, it's all theory, as I haven't been allowed to study a Jaffa or even a symbiote yet."
"Do you believe yourself capable of coming up with a way to rid the Jaffa of their reliance on a symbiote?" Teal'c asked curiously. He spoke in a monotone, but Harry could tell that he sounded hopeful.
"Well, if anyone is able to to it, it'd be me. But like I said, I haven't had any real research material yet," Harry said, shrugging as he hopped off the operating table, putting his shirt back on, followed by his lab coat. "How about I study you and your symbiote?"
"What would it require?" Teal'c asked.
"Well, first, I'd like a blood sample from you and the snake," Harry said with a gesture toward Teal'c stomach, where he knew that the symbiote pouch was located on a Jaffa. "From there, I should be able to isolate the properties of the symbiote that holds up your immune system. Hopefully, of course. I won't know until I've tried it. If I can do that, I should be able to synthesize a proper replacement."
As he lit a cigarette, he noticed that Teal'c raised an eyebrow, looking from the cigarette to the 'No Smoking' sign on the wall.
"Are you aware, Harry Potter, that there is no smoking allowed on this base?"
Harry hummed, staring at the sign.
"You know, you're right," he said. "We'll have to do something about that."
With that, Harry walked up to the sign and tore it off the wall, before throwing it into the trash bin, turning toward Teal'c and giving him a big grin.
"Problem solved, yes?"
Teal'c looked amused. Well, as amused as Teal'c could look. "Indeed," he said, nodding slowly.
"Well now, let's take those blood samples, shall we?"
"I understand something went wrong?" Harry asked as he stood in Dr. Fraiser's lab, looking at a computer monitor, in front of which Fraiser herself sat.
"You can say that again," Fraiser said as she tapped away at her keyboard. "Apparently, Major Graham attempted to assassinate the Tok'ra High Councilor. He failed, then took his own life. The Tok'ra believe he was something called a Za'tarc, or something. Kind of like a sleeper agent in modern fiction, who has been exposed to mind control in order to involuntarily perform a duty for the enemy, oftentimes assassinations."
"So, he wasn't responsible for it? He was just a pawn?"
"Pretty much. That's the theory, anyway," Fraiser said. "I have performed an autopsy, and I found some unidentifiable residue from the explosion, but no indication that he was under any kind of chemical influence."
"There's more than one way to control someone's mind," Harry said. "How was his brain?"
"Ah. Too bad, I would have wanted to study it," Harry said, humming.
"Well, some mind control techniques, especially advanced hypnosis, leave traces in the mind for anyone to see if they just look hard enough. I have studied the brain for a long time, intensively. See, one's memory process is made up of three stages: First is something called 'encoding.' In this stage we must change the information so that we may put the memory into the encoding process. 'Storage' is the second memory stage. This entails that we maintain information over periods of time. Finally the third process is the 'retrieval' of information that we have stored. We must locate it and return it to our consciousness."
"So?" Fraiser asked, shrugging.
"Well, see, I have learned how to 'decode' the memories, so to speak, breaking them down, studying them, and then building them up from scratch with an outside source. Now, when false memories are planted via hypnosis, or any other form of brainwashing, it doesn't actually replace the memory that's already there. It merely, if one were to compare memories to a line at the cinema, pushes the existing memory out of the line to take its place. The old memory is still there, so it is possible to decode and retrieve it, provided one can find the false memory."
"But what does that have to do with Major Graham?" Fraiser asked curiously. "I mean, even if you can do that, you can't retrieve memories from an exploded brain."
"That's true, but think tactically. If you were a Goa'uld, and you had managed to turn an enemy into a... Za'tarc, was it?" Harry asked, and Fraiser nodded. "Well, if you were a Goa'uld, and had made a Za'tarc... would you really make just one?"
"You want to check the other members of Major Graham's team?"
"Can you really extract memories?" Fraiser asked doubtfully.
"Although I do love to brag, I don't brag about things I cannot do," Harry said simply. "I don't know General Hammond very well, and he doesn't seem to like me. And given my file, I find it doubtful that he will allow me to do this. That's why I was hoping you can recommend it. He seems to like you enough."
Fraiser leaned back in her chair, staring at Harry, who gave her a grin. She turned to the computer monitor, watching it for a moment, then looked back at Harry and nodded.
"Alright, I'll take it up with General Hammond, but I sure hope you know what you're doing."
So, thanks to Fraiser, half an hour later found Harry stepping into Hammond's office, where he found the General sitting behind his desk, looking contemplative.
"General," Harry said, knocking on the door.
"You know, people normally knock before they enter a room, Doctor," Hammond said, looking up at Harry, who simply grinned at him. In a rare show of respect, he hadn't actually lit the cigarette that was currently dangling from his mouth.
"Yeah, well, no one has ever accused me of being normal," he reasoned with a shrug. "So, I understand you talked to Dr. Fraiser?"
"I did. She seems to believe that you are capable of doing what you claim to be capable of," Hammond said, staring hard at Harry. "Are you telling the truth, Doctor?"
"I am. I have used my machine three times in the past, and it has worked flawlessly. Of course, its ability to discover and break down false memories is merely theoretical, since I haven't had the opportunity to test that function yet, but I believe that it can be done. It has worked flawlessly when it comes to copying memories."
Slowly, Hammond nodded.
"The Tok'ra are expected to arrive in..." Hammond looked up at the clock hanging over the door. "...twenty minutes, with Colonel O'Neill, Major Carter, and Dr. Jackson. They are bringing a device they claim to be a Za'tarc detector. How soon can you get your device set up?"
"If I leave the base right away? Half an hour," Harry informed Hammond, who nodded.
"Then I will be informing the Tok'ra that we will be testing your device before we test theirs."
"I'm sure they will be thrilled, sir," Harry said with a small smirk on his face. "Well then, General, I'll leave right away."
"I'll inform security that you have been given leave, and to expect you back shortly."
With that, he left Hammond's office.
Twenty minutes after meeting with Harry, General Hammond stood in the Gate Room, watching the active gate with Teal'c, as O'Neill, Jackson, Carter, and the Tok'ra Anise and Martouf stepped through it, Martouf carrying a briefcase-like blue-and-bronze object that was undoubtedly the Za'tarc detector.
"Colonel," Hammond greeted O'Neill, before looking at the Tok'ra. "Martouf, Anise, on behalf of the SGC, I want to offer my sincerest apologies and condolences for the lives of the lost Tok'ra."
"High Councilor Per'sus also sends regrets for the men of the SGC that were lost," Martouf said with a solemn nod. "We consider Major Graham as much a victim as anyone."
"All outstanding SG teams are being recalled for screening and placed on a twenty-four hour watch," Hammond informed them, to which Anise nodded.
"I would like to begin with the remaining members of Major Graham's team. There was obviously opportunity to program him on a recent mission."
"Actually, the latest addition to our forces, Dr. Harry Potter, believes that he has a device that should work fine in rooting out any Za'tarc," Hammond said, making O'Neill and Jackson blink.
"He does?" they both asked in surprise, in perfect unison. Hammond nodded.
"He does. We would like to use his device before we rely on this Za'tarc detector," he said, gesturing for the item in Martouf's hand.
"Well, if Dr. Potter possesses such a device, I would very much like to see it," Anise said, looking pleasantly surprised.
"This way," Hammond said as he gestured for the way out of the Gate Room. "Dr. Potter is currently setting up in lab five, if you'd like to meet him."
Martouf and Anise nodded and followed Hammond out of the Gate Room, along with Carter and Jackson.
They headed straight for lab five, where Harry was busy hooking wires up to a chair, leading from a very futuristic-looking computer, with a very slim monitor. The computer didn't have a mouse, but instead a round steel device that had a rubbery-looking substance covering the center of it. The 'hard drive' was very large, about twice the size of a normal hard drive, to which all the wires were connected.
"Doctor," Hammond said, making Harry look up, an unlit cigarette once more dangling from his mouth.
"General," he greeted with a nod, then looked to the Tok'ra. "And am I right to assume that you are... Anise... and... Martouf of the Tok'ra?"
"We are," Martouf said, as all three gave each other small bows. "We understand you have invented a form of memory recall device?"
"Something like that," Harry said with a nod, then looked to Anise, who was looking at him strangely. "Is there a problem?"
"Oh, no problem. I am merely wondering what that is on your face?" Anise said, gesturing for the stitches.
"Well, in my teenage years, I was about as interested in the human body as I am now, if not more so," Harry said, gesturing for the stitches as well, and in doing so showing off the stitching on his hand. "Books can only teach you so much. I found it a better way to learn to actually take a proper look at the human body. Of course, no one would allow a fourteen-year old to slice them open, so I had to do it to myself."
"I see you are very dedicated to your work," Anise said, sounding impressed, which made Harry chuckle.
"That's the first time I've heard someone drop that comment in regards to my stitches. Most people just call me mad."
"I wonder why," Jackson said sarcastically.
"So, would you mind explaining how this device works?" Anise asked as she walked up to the device and gestured for it.
"Well, basically, the chair has a lot of technology built into it, so it's not just for comfort," Harry said, leaning against the desk on which the computer had been set up. "The chair is designed specifically to 'hack' into the brain, hooking into the neuronal synapses in the brain. The signals it picks up are sent to the computer, where my program interprets each signal, identifying what signal belongs to what sound, sight, et cetera."
"And you created this device?" Anise asked, sounding surprised, and Harry's eyes, which had been happy and warm, suddenly lost some of their warmth, and he gave her a scolding look.
"Are you suggesting that I would have stolen this technology and labeled it mine?" he asked, clearly sounding insulted, from what Hammond could tell.
"No, of course not," Anise said quickly. She sounded a bit nervous, and Hammond could tell why. The scolding look in Harry's eyes looked incredibly dangerous. From what Hammond could understand, Harry Potter was a man who took great pride in his work, and for someone to even insinuate that his work was not his own... Well, Hammond could understand why he would be offended.
"Are you just about ready, Doctor?" Hammond asked, hoping to diffuse the situation by diverting Harry's attention. Harry held the stare for a few seconds longer, then looked at Hammond.
"Just about. I just need to boot it."
"Why haven't we heard of this device before?" Carter asked as Harry started tapping away at the keyboard in front of the monitor.
"Well, the British government, who funded my experiments, didn't feel like this device was very ethical to use. Something about it being an invasion of privacy, or something trivial like that..." Harry muttered, giving a dismissive gesture with his hand, as though the concept of invasion of privacy was something he couldn't give a damn about.
The screen flickered to life, and a bunch of windows opened up, with texts that Hammond believed he wouldn't be able to understand even if he studied computer programming for the next five years.
"There we go. It's ready," Harry said with a smile. "How about you send in the first subject?"
Hammond nodded. "We'll be in the observation room," he said, gesturing for the glass behind Harry, showing the interior of a room with many chairs.
Five minutes later, Harry was alone in the lab, while Hammond, Carter, Jackson, O'Neill, Teal'c, Martouf and Anise were sitting in the observation room, watching as a young woman wearing military fatigues came into the lab, escorted by a member of the base security force.
"Welcome, Lieutenant Astor," Harry said with a small grin on his face, which did nothing to calm Astor's nerves, judging by the look on her face. He gestured for the chair. "Please, have a seat and relax."
Astor gulped as she sat down in the chair, her eyes widening in alarm when Harry strapped her arms to the armrests. He then strapped what looked like a rubber headband to her head, with several wires coming out of it, which were connected to the chair.
"Now," Harry said, walking around the desk to sit down behind the monitor, placing his hands on the rubbery substance on the 'mouse,' "I want you to think about your recent mission to P6Y-325. I'll handle the rest."
He slowly pressed his fingers down on the substance seemingly randomly as a large amount of data started raining down in one of the open windows like in that movie The Matrix. Harry was staring hard at the data, and now and then he would press down on the substance, and a number or letter would be transferred from the window with the data to another window, where it linked together with others to form what looked like a chemical formula. The process went on for about five minutes, Harry picking out one number, letter, or symbol at a time, building a larger and larger formula, until he had what looked like the most complex net of numbers and letters in history.
Harry took out a cigarette when he was done and put it in his mouth, but didn't light it, simply staring at the net, seeing something that Hammond couldn't even hope to see.
"What's he doing?" O'Neill whispered to Carter, who shrugged.
"If I am correct," Anise spoke up, apparently having heard O'Neill, "then each symbol, letter, or digit that was taken from the flow of data is a signal stored in the brain. I believe that Dr. Potter's device interprets these signals and translates them to various sounds, smells, sights, and so on that are stored in the memory. What I believe he is doing now is, if the device truly can find false memories, searching the memory patterns for anything that stands out. Something that doesn't belong there."
Harry, in the lab, moved his fingers across the rubbery substance, zooming in on a portion of the net, tilting his head to the side. He drew a circle with his finger, and a piece of the net was cut from it and placed in another window, separate from the rest. Then, he started the process again, pulling different symbols and such from the rain of data, filling in the now blank space in the net. After another couple of minutes, Harry nodded to himself and closed the window of data, having a completed net of symbols.
"Thank you, Lieutenant," he told Astor as he got up and unstrapped her from the chair, nodding to the security officer, who nodded back and escorted her out of the lab. Harry looked up at Hammond and made a 'come here' gesture with his finger. Hammond, SG-1, and Anise and Martouf made their way out of the observation room and into the lab.
"She's a Za'tarc," Harry told them, gesturing for them to come around the desk so that they could see the monitor. "Here's what she remembers of the mission," he said as he copied the net and carried it over to the portion he had cut out of it earlier, leaving the recently added portion, so that it blended perfectly with the previously cut piece. He pressed down on the 'mouse,' and another window opened up. It looked like a video, but seen from a first-person perspective, seen out of Astor's eyes. "I had to cut a lot of what the Lieutenant saw, as the eyes see things from a perspective much wider than this screen can show, but..."
He made a gesture for the video, then seemed to fast-forward past where Astor's team met the people on the planet, up until when Astor looked up and saw Goa'uld Death Gliders flying overhead, attacking the village. A firefight broke out in the night, and Astor and her team fled into the forest. They watched as Astor reached a clearing with her team, where SG-15 was already engaged in a firefight with a large amount of Jaffa. Astor shot a Jaffa, and her teammates shot some more, creating an opening in the ranks and allowing them to escape to the Stargate, at which point Harry paused the video.
"This is a false memory. I managed to find it because some of the data I recovered from her brain was very similar to each other, but written differently. This is because a false memory doesn't erase the existing memory, but rather pushes it out of the way to take its place. Or rather, it lays itself on top of the existing memory and impersonates it. Here's the real memory."
He started another video, fast-forwarding to the firefight in the clearing. Instead of shooting a Jaffa, however, Astor was hit by a Zat, along with the rest of her team, which caused the screen to go dark and immediately switch over to a blurry image of a cell inside a Goa'uld mothership. Harry paused the video and looked to the others.
"There's more, but I don't think you want to see the torture and brainwashing involved in their conditioning," Harry said. He himself didn't look at all disgusted, but rather fascinated. Nonetheless, he fast-forwarded again to show a Jaffa, bearing the mark of Heru'ur. The Jaffa was speaking to Astor in Goa'uld, and Hammond, nonplussed, looked to the three people in the room who, to his knowledge, spoke the language.
"He is giving her orders," Martouf spoke up, narrowing his eyes as he listened. "He is telling her to assassinate... the leader of earth."
"Well, since earth doesn't have a single official leader," Harry spoke up, finally lighting his cigarette, "I can only assume that he means the President."
Hammond's eyes widened. "Is there any way to remove the programming?"
"Well, this device hasn't exactly been designed for that, but give me two hours, and I should have been able to modify it," Harry said, patting the hard drive. "If I can find the materials for it, of course."
"What do you need?" Hammond asked immediately.
"I'll give you a list," Harry said, stuffing his hands into his pockets. "But first, we should make sure there are no other Za'tarcs in our midst."
Hammond nodded slowly, agreeing with Harry's statement.
"And that's number three," Harry said as he recorded the memory pattern onto the hard drive and opening up a new file. He had just finished with the last member of Astor's team, who incidentally was the last member of the SG teams to be tested. He had only discovered three Za'tarcs, Astor, Captain Blasdale, and Sergeant Lewis, all members of Major Graham's team. No one else tested positive.
"Then you should get to work on modifying the device," Hammond said.
"Hold on a minute," Harry said, then made a gesture for the two Tok'ra in the room. "They need to be tested as well."
"I have not been in any situations where I would be vulnerable to the Goa'uld Za'tarc technology," Anise spoke, to which Harry slowly raised an eyebrow, trying to discern if Anise was telling the truth. Figuring that she was, he looked to Martouf.
"Alright, you, in the chair."
Martouf looked ready to object, but a look from Harry made him comply and allow himself to be strapped to the chair.
Since Martouf had lived a lot longer than a human being, there was a lot more data to search through, so Martouf's testing took near half an hour, during which Harry managed to smoke no less than six cigarettes in boredom.
"Bingo," Harry spoke once he was done, smirking at Martouf. "Glad to see humans aren't the only ones to succumb to this thing."
"Wait, are you saying...?" Martouf muttered, and Harry nodded. Hammond made a gesture, and two security officers came in, escorting Martouf out of the room. Anise looked very alarmed at having found out that one of their own was a Za'tarc.
"I'll get to modifying this thing right away," Harry said, having already given Hammond a list of the materials he'd need, which were on their way.
"See to it, Doctor," Hammond said, nodding, before leaving the room with the others. Now alone, Harry lit another cigarette, before getting to work taking apart the hard drive.
Two hours later, Harry slapped the shell back onto the hard drive and booted the memory device, which he had yet to name, and started running diagnostics. His fifty-seventh cigarette of the day was dangling, unlit, from his mouth. He had already sent word to General Hammond, and nodded when he saw the man enter the observation room with Anise and the rest of SG-1. Moments later, Astor entered the room with two security officers. She was once more strapped to the chair, and Harry got to work.
"I'm going to let you keep the false memory that has been implanted in your head," he informed the Lieutenant as he tapped away on the keyboard. "You went through a lot of pain during your captivity with the Goa'uld, enough to shatter your mind in order to manipulate it. I doubt you'd want to relive that sensation, so..." Shrugging, he placed his hand on the 'mouse,' and started going through new data that started flowing in one of the windows. He studied the data for a good five minutes, before he found what he was looking for, pressing down on the mouse. A string of letters, numbers, and symbols moved from the flow to an empty window. Once there, he circled the string of data, and then moved his finger over to the keyboard, tapping the 'Delete' key, watching as it vanished from sight.
"And we're done," he announced pleasantly. "Next!"
Repeating the procedure with Captain Blasdale, Sergeant Lewis, and Martouf, Harry rose from his chair and stretched lazily when he was done, a pleasant smile on his face.
"Well, I'd say that was a great success!" he said happily as he stepped out of the lab to find Hammond, SG-1, and the two Tok'ra outside, waiting for him. "Wouldn't you say?"
"How did you remove the programming?" Anise wanted to know.
"Oh, it was fairly simple. I merely had to recalibrate the scanners on it, so that it picked up conscious and subconscious thoughts, rather than memory signals."
"Such a device sounds like it is far beyond the capacity of the human brain to create," Martouf said, to which Harry just gave a grin.
"Well, I am an unparalleled genius, and I have never been good with the concept of 'impossible.' It just makes me take it as a challenge."
"Thank you, Doctor, for your help and hard work," Hammond said, appearing to be looking at Harry in a whole new light.
"It was no problem. It gave me the opportunity to properly test my device. Now!" Harry clapped his hands together and rubbed them together, humming. "I am famished."
With that, Harry left.
Well, here it is, the first chapter of the sequel! Let me know what you think!