Well this fic has been baking inside my noggin and resting inside my computer for quite some time, but I thought I'd be better actually posting it!
This story is definitely one that's moving me out of my comfort zone, but it won't leave my brain alone! It's a post-series story and my take on what happened after 'Enemy at the Gate'. Old relationships have been tested, others have fallen apart, and old alliances might not be all that they seem. The SGA Team - and Earth - are in for a bit of a shock in this one.
I hope you enjoy, and many many MANY thanks to the fantabulous The Mind of the Dragon for her support and advice!
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
September 1st 2012, 5.30pm
"Come on Maddie, we've walked far enough!" Jeannie shouted after her daughter.
"Just a little further mom!" the ten year-old responded, jogging on ahead.
"Just…stay in sight Mads," Kaleb told her, and watched as his daughter's jog slowed to a quick walk.
Rodney chuckled at his niece's antics. At ten years of age she'd become both independent and spirited, and very much like her mother was at that age.
"She thinks we're going to the park," he heard Jeannie say to Kaleb.
"Well we're not," Kaleb responded, "I need to eat! I skipped lunch and we've walked for miles!"
As his sister and brother-in-law turned their conversation to the subject of which Vegan restaurant to head to, Rodney decided to leave them to it, walking on a bit further, his new DSLR camera in hand. He could see his niece several yards ahead, leaning her head over the railing separating the road from English Bay Beach. It was a beautiful afternoon in Vancouver and Rodney walked over to near where his niece was, taking pictures of the bay as he went.
"Uncle Mer!" Maddie said loudly, "Take one of me!"
"Okay Little One," he smiled at her, before instructing her to stand by the railings.
Maddie obliged, posing for Rodney before sticking her tongue out. Rodney quickly took a snap as she started giggling.
"I'll be serious this time," she grinned, mischief in her eyes as he took a second photo.
"Thank you Maddie," he smiled at her, "Now we'll wait for your Mom and Dad and then I can get one of you with the twins!"
Maddie's face lit up, "And then we can go to Stanley Park!"
"Not today Mads," Kaleb said as he and Jeannie caught up with the stroller, "It's too late and we're all hungry."
Maddie's shoulders slumped, but after thinking it over for a few seconds she relented, "Well I am a little hungry, so can we go tomorrow?"
Jeannie chuckled, "Okay okay…we'll go tomorrow."
A rustle of material and a noise from the stroller caught their attention.
"Oh, Ewan's awake," Jeannie announced reaching into the stroller as the two year old gave his family a sleepy smile.
September 2st 2012, 8.30am
"What time are you scheduled for?" Dr. Miko Kusanagi asked Radek.
"Oh eh, um…Two thirty," he responded.
"That is a very good time to present at," Miko smiled, "I will be presenting tomorrow at noon."
"Isn't that when Kavanagh is presenting?"
"No, he got moved to 1pm, and is not happy about it."
Radek and Miko were enjoying a breakfast of Miso soup and white rice at a small hotel a ten minute walk from the Tokyo Institute of Technology, where they were both due to present papers at an academic conference. Weeks earlier the two had noticed each other's names on the conference schedule and had arranged to meet that morning, prior to the start of the conference.
"Have you been to Japan before?"
"No, never, actually. I have been meaning to ever since Dr. Beckett moved to Sendai."
"He's in Sendai?" Miko looked confused, "I thought he was in Sudan with Doctors Without Borders."
"Oh, he was, for a while at least, until the Tsunami happened and he flew out here and ended up staying."
"I wish he had come here under better circumstances," Miko said sadly, "but a lot of the aid workers that came to help have ended up staying."
"You know Carson, he needs to be helping people, and he made a lot of friends here. After what happened at SGC, I think he finally found what he was looking for...He's actually going to be meeting me at Tokyo Tech at 9, if you'd like to join us?"
"I would love that," Miko smiled.
Atlantis, San Francisco Bay, California, USA
September 1st 2012, 5.30pm
Chuck sniggered at his computer, "You've gotta be kidding me Lorne, no way."
"I am not teaming up with Mitchell! Not a chance."
"Do you want to beat Grakarnok or not?"
"Sure I do, but I don't need Cameron Mitchell to help me!"
"But he's already got like ten people helping him, and we need to stop the Klingons!"
"I'll think about it, okay?"
"You really suck at this game," Lorne chided.
Chuck reclined in his seat, smirking at his friend through his web cam.
"How's things where you are?" Lorne asked, changing the subject.
"Oh, same old, same old."
Chuck let his eyes wander round Atlantis' control room, from one lifeless control panel to the other before finally settling on the Stargate, which was covered by a large tarpaulin.
He looked back to his computer, noting the grimace on Lorne's face.
"How's the SGC?" Chuck asked.
"Oh, same old, same old," Lorne chuckled, "We've not been offworld in a couple of weeks as all the scientists are working on yet another plan to get to the Destiny."
"Think they'll manage?"
"I hope so! They keep stealing Hailey from me when my team needs it's geek!"
"That sucks!" Chuck smirked, knowing that Evan had a soft spot for the Captain, "Anyway, has this time planet-side given you time to do anything about that thing we were talking about?"
Chuck watched as Lorne looked away from him rather sheepishly, "Not exactly…I uh…I just don't know how to move forward. It…it's awkward."
"I don't really know what else to tell you other than what I already have…It shouldn't even be an issue."
"I know, I know…It's just well, I…Oh I don't know."
"Evan, let me put it this way: You have -" his computer beeped, "- oh crap, there's a fluctuation in the power grid, I gotta go."
"Sure thing Chuck, speak to you later."
Chuck nodded at his friend before cutting the connection and grabbing his radio.
"Amelia, I'm picking up a power fluctuation near where you are."
"But I'm in a residential block." Banks called back to him, "Oh and Sheppard left his skateboard behind."
Chuck smiled, "Just take a look at it for me. It's two floors below you, and I think it's near one of the filtration units."
"I'll get back to you in five minutes!"
"And don't do anything stupid with the skateboard. I want that in one piece so I've got an excuse to get in touch with Sheppard."
Washington DC, District of Columbia, USA
September 1st 2012, 8.30pm
"They actually think this will work?" Richard Woolsey was incredulous.
"Supposedly," Walter Harriman sighed back down the phone, "Not that my opinion matters that much but I think it will end in complete disaster. Sam, Dr. McKay and Dr. Lee had a similar idea a few years back but they themselves said it would never likely be a practical solution. It will just get the Destiny crew killed."
"Where would Destiny get the power from?"
"Kavanagh thinks if Destiny spends much longer in a star's coronasphere than it's designed to, it will give the ship the power it needs to lock on to another nine chevron gate address…We already know that we can 'patch' gate addresses, so we can create a nine chevron address for Earth, but the Destiny Gate is so much older and more rudimentary that I think it will destroy the gate almost instantaneously. I doubt even a Pegasus Gate could handle what Kavanagh wants the Destiny Gate to do."
"So you want me to try and dissuade the IOA from taking this course of action?"
"Not necessarily Mr Woolsey. I think the idea may be workable with a different gate. I had a quick word with Bill the other day and he thinks if he and some of the SGC's best minds are able to go to Destiny, they might in a few years be able to manufacture a gate that can dial a nine chevron address."
"We can do that now?"
"We've had enough time to pore over the information we have on Seed Ships and their gate-building facilities that Bill is confident he can do this if given enough time."
"Interesting. I'll certainly try and see what I can do. I'll argue that while the plan has its merits, it should be considered an option for the long term, and not something we should do right away."
"Thank you," Walter sounded relieved, "That means a lot. I have friends on-board Destiny. Just remember I never told you any of this."
"Of course, as always, I'll let you know what's decided at the meeting. General O'Neill should be joining us."
Richard stopped, expecting Walter to respond.
"Uh, I uh gotta go. Todd's acting weird."
"Anything I should be worrying about?"
"I'll let you know."
Stargate Command, Cheyenne Mountain, Colorado Springs, USA
September 1st 2012, 6.30pm
"What's going on?" Lorne asked as he reached Todd's secure quarters.
"He's been screaming to be let out. He says he needs to speak to Colonel Sheppard."
"LET ME OUT!" Todd bellowed from the other side of the secured door of his room.
"Is our Wraith misbehaving?" Landry said with a hint of impatience as he and Walter joined Lorne and the security team.
"Open it," Landry instructed, taking a step back expecting the Wraith to jump out.
A sergeant opened the door and let it swing open, but Todd did not jump out as expected, instead he walked out in a slow, steady gait, a grim look on his features.
"Although I must still insist I speak with John Sheppard, I believe you are already too late."
Central Iowa, USA
September 1st 2012, 7.30pm
"Look at that Patrick, no phone signal at all," John said in triumph as he marched between rows of corn.
They had been walking for almost an hour so that John could find a remote spot where no-one could find him. And now they were walking through a field of golden corn, almost ready for harvest.
"But I guess, it's a little late, they'll wonder where we are, why I'm not answering the phone, and Dave will go spare," he sighed at the 14 month-old strapped to his front, "because, Patrick, I'm sure you'll have noticed that my brother likes to be quite controlling, knowing where I am all the time and that's why I'm not really enjoying this vacation as much as I'd been expecting, and it's just as well you make a good sounding board little guy, or he'd have driven me insane already this week."
John let out another huffed sign, noticing that Patrick had no interest in his moaning and had returned to sucking on his fist instead.
"Worth it for the sunset though," John mused, holding up his phone to take a picture.
As he took the shot, he felt all the hairs on the back of his neck stand up, and heard a sound he'd never expected to hear again in his life. Steeling himself, he turned round and looked skyward.
"That is not good," he said as he watched a Wraith Scout ship pass over him, heading towards the setting sun…