AN: Welcome all! This story is the sequel to Lightning Strikes. Forget Me Not is the interlude. We will be having lots of fun!
AN 2: For those of you that read this previously, this is the edited version of this chapter. I needed to add in some things that have bearing later.
To all of you, I appreciate each and every one of you for your support. Reviews and concrits are welcome, just remember this is fiction.
Colonel John Sheppard dreaded staff meetings, especially when Woolsey received a new packet from the IOA. He had actually been looking forward to this one, though, because he and Teyla were finally going to announce the date for their wedding. The betting pools gained momentum when they started dating and the action picked up after they moved in together. He checked his watch and groaned inwardly when he saw the time. The meeting should have been over an hour ago, which meant that Lorne had taken his place in running the new arrivals through Pegasus 101.
All of the department heads had already delivered their reports. The problem was one of the new scientists, Dr. Carl Dieter, who had arrived three weeks ago. He was a specialist in dead languages, but also had a degree in information security systems. Currently, he was expounding on the virtues of using biometric scanners to replace passwords.
Finally, John decided enough was enough. Even thinking about the wonder of seeing his child on the Ancient ultrasound from Teyla's checkup yesterday could no longer keep him calm. Thank god her morning sickness had finally tapered off. He cleared his throat and sat up straight. "Excuse me, Dr. Dieter, but biometric scanners are a security risk here. Replicators can make a perfect copy of a person and a Wraith would just rip your hand off and use it. Plus, biometric scanners can be beaten with a set of fingerprints, a sheet of heavy plastic, an Exacto knife and gelatin."
The young man's face turned red and he opened his mouth to reply when Rodney cut him off.
"Don't even start trying to impugn his credentials, you'll only embarrass yourself."
John picked up the thread. "We use passwords because they can be changed or locked out easily. It's kind of hard to change your palm print or retina patterns. Now, as Military Commander of this city and the person in charge of its security, I suggest that you read through the reports on the Wraith and the replicators, and revise your suggestions." John narrowed his eyes at Dieter. "At that time, you are welcome to submit them to me and I will then decide if they should be presented to the rest of the staff."
Woolsey cleared his throat. "Thank you, Dr. Dieter, for your suggestions. When you have revised them we would be glad to consider them."
Fuming with embarrassment, Dieter gathered his laptop and notes and stormed out the door.
Woolsey glanced around the room at his nearly comatose staff. "Well, unless there is any other business then this meeting is concluded."
John stood and Teyla rose with him. "Actually, there is."
Woolsey nodded. "Alright Colonel, go ahead."
"Teyla and I have finally set the date for our wedding. It will be in four months on May First."
The room erupted as everyone gathered to tender their congratulations to the couple.
After everyone separated, Radek asked one of the important questions. "What kind of ceremony have you decided on?"
John glanced down at Teyla. Their eyes met for a moment then Teyla nodded before answering. "We have decided to have an Earth-style civil ceremony and incorporate portions of the traditional Athosian Unity ceremony into it.
Woolsey looked around. "Anything else?"
John reached into his pants pocket and pulled out a flash drive. "Yeah, please send this to the SGC with the next batch of reports."
Woolsey cocked his head slightly in question as he took the drive.
"It's part of our guest list and some things we'll need for the wedding."
Woolsey nodded. "Ah, yes. Will there be many coming from Earth?"
John raised a hand and wiggled it back and forth. "Eh, only twelve if they all decide to attend." He waved at the drive in Woolsey's hand. "It's all on there." With that, John placed a hand on Teyla's back, guiding her from the room, Rodney right behind them. Ronon fell in from his position outside the conference room where he'd been waiting for the last hour. John glanced over his shoulder at the other two men. "I know I don't have to ask if the two of you are hungry, and I know Teyla and I are, so let's get some lunch."
Ronon nodded. "Sounds good."
In his office, Woolsey loaded the contents of the flash drive into his computer. He looked over the list, noticing most of the names were not unexpected. A couple were surprising, but he noticed one that, in his opinion, should have been there but wasn't. He typed a quick memo to General O'Neill about the missing person and planted the suggestion. It would now be up to the General if that person got an invite or not.
Still fuming late that evening as he paced along one of Atlantis' lower corridors, Carl Dieter was stopped by a bulky figure stepping from the shadows.
"Excuse me." Dieter spat out as he shifted to go around the other person.
A hand snaked out, halting his progress. "Hey, doc, I was looking for you. Name's Brody, and I think we can help each other with a mutual goal."
"Oh, and what goal would you and I have in common, hmmm?" Dieter sneered.
"Getting Colonel Sheppard to pay for his crimes."
Shocked at the other man's bluntness, Dieter was speechless for a moment. "How do you know I won't try for brownie points and report you?"
Brody chuckled. "Because, after this morning, I'm sure you'd like to see the guy taken down a few pegs."
Dieter was on guard. "How do you know about this morning?"
"One of my bunkmates talked about your tests with the palm readers, plus I looked up the agenda for this morning's meeting. The notes are usually confidential, but the event calendar isn't." Brody looked around the area as if expecting the Colonel or one of the majors to pop out in surprise. "After that, I traded for guard duty in the Gate Room and made sure I stood where I could see the doors. The expression on your face told me all I needed to know and here we are."
Dieter put his hand to his chin in thought. "Very well, let's go somewhere and talk."
Brody slapped Dieter on the back so hard the slight linguist almost fell. "I like you, Doc. With my plan and your smarts, we can pull this off."