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Thursday, March 3rd, 2016 10:40 pm
My thanks to the 21 authors who made Epistolary Soup a reality: Annieb, Antonomasia09, Carlyn7685, Eilidh, Fig Newton, Gategremlyn, Goddess47, Immertreu, Izhilzha, Jb, Jedibuttercup, Madders_ahatter, Magistrate, SallyMn, Solstice0612, Splash the Cat, Tallulah Rasa, Thothmes, Topazowl, Traycer, and Wonderland. A warm welcome to our new cook, Carlyn! An appreciate tip of the ladle to our regular contributors. And an extra thanks to Antonomasia09, Goddess47, Madders_ahatter, Solstice, and Topazowl for their multiple contributions!

I can't even put a word count on our Soup, as we've got everything from epic-length fics to Twitter-fests, crossword puzzles, and hieroglyphics. So either browse through the TOC (up soon, really!) or just scroll down and enjoy!

A is for AAR
by [personal profile] goddess47

First draft


George, how the heck do we end up in these situations? Can't the geeks figure out some way to test for natives that hate us? They can figure the atmosphere to bazillionth part per million but they can't catch a clue whether the native are going to shoot on sight or not? Geez.

Danny didn't get anywhere trying to talk to anyone. They pretty much started shooting as soon as he opened his mouth. Danny really tried, but he wasn't going to get anywhere.

When I was looking to make sure no one had snuck behind us, I took an arrow in the leg, and let me tell you that hurt like hell. And they must have had some sleepy-juice, since I started to see spots almost right away. Good thing Carter's bright, she didn't even stop to try talking her way out of it - she took a couple of pot shots at the troublemakers, then just grabbed Danny by the back of his shirt to drag him out of danger. I think he was still talking as she was dragging him bodily out of there. I knew enough that Teal'c threw me over his shoulder before hustling back to the gate.

Let's not go back there again.


Final Draft


Initial meeting with the natives of P47-320 did not go well. Initial contact, as handled by Dr. Jackson, revealed the natives have acute xenophobia. In spite of Dr. Jackson's best efforts to establish communication with the natives and explain our mission, the situation quickly deteriorated. When the natives started attacking with arrows and slingshots, I determined it would be better to retreat from the village; once out of sight, my plan was to have a chance to reconsider our options.

While evaluating our exit path, I was struck in the leg with an arrow; at relatively close range, the arrow caused a fracture just above the ankle. Dr. Lamm later determined that the arrow carried a quick acting soporific. (see attached: ONeillJ-medical-P34K19.pdf)

I have been told that Major Carter immediately took control of the situation. She used her hand weapon and shot multiple warning shots to discourage the natives from coming closer. She also ensured that Dr. Jackson was extricated from the situation. Teal'c took the initiative to carry me back to the Gate since I was by then inconscious and unable to travel.

I would strongly recommend that this world be flagged as hostile.

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B is for By the Way, Ba'al
by [personal profile] topazowl

Dear Ba’al

Thank you so much for you hospitality, not! Come on, you must realise by now that you are NEVER gonna beat SG1 so get over it! Even with Daniel all glowy, we still got the better of you so if I were you, I’d give up – NOW!

And I don’t know what you did to that poor girl but she is safe now and you are never getting anywhere near her again.

Did Yu beat you up? Sure hope he did Bocci. Can’t believe he helped us out but, of the whole sorry lot of you, he’s probably at the bottom of the list of most horrible Goa’ulds. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t put his head on a platter so we are still mortal enemies but, in this case, that wonderful cliché, "the enemy of my enemy is my friend" applies so I’ve gotta give him some credit.

So, having kicked your ass, SG1 is back (even if Daniel is only here in spirit and we have Jonas on the team) so you’d better not be messing with us!

By the way, Daniel’s right (as usual); this pretend letter writing is quite cathartic!

Yours

Jack O’Neill (But that’s Colonel to you)

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C is for Coded Letter
by [personal profile] solstice0612

Teal’c crossed the large plaza under the noon sun. Casting a dignified figure, he moved with purpose but without rushing. Once in a while, when he passed by a fellow council member or an acquaintance, he nodded in salute but continued in his path without stopping to converse, as he sometimes did. There was no time to waste today. The old Jaffa was dying and she had something to say.

Once he reached his destination, the home of an old comrade in arms, he was quickly led into a chamber in the back. The Jaffa was lying on the large bed, her white hair artfully pulled back and combed into a long braid that rested on the blankets covering her slender body. She was still beautiful, in spite of her advanced age. With a graceful wave of her hand, she pointed towards a chair by the side of the bed.

“Emetjer, it is an honor see you. It has been a long time,” said Teal’c sitting down.

“Teal’c, I appreciate your visit. As you can see, I have little time left before I move on to the great beyond.”

“You have been an honorable Jaffa, Emetjer. How can I be of assistance?”

“I wish to give you something that I should have given you long ago, but I must explain. As you know, I was a Jaffa in the service of Apophis and his Queen Amonet for a long time.”

Teal’c’s eyebrow rose slightly, but he remained silent.

“When Apophis fell into the hands of Sokar and Amonet was unable to defeat Heru’ur, she ordered me to prepare a safe place where she could hide with her young child. However, like all Goa’ulds, she underestimated the power of our rebellion,” she said, before a cough raked her body. After drawing a few breaths, the elderly Jaffa continued, “I am growing weak. I must get to the point.”

“I appreciate your effort in telling me of Amonet’s plans, but what purpose does this information serve? The System Lords are no more,” asked Teal’c gently, not wanting to tire his friend more than necessary.

“I am dying as well, and now I truly understand the importance of bringing all circles to a full close. Amonet’s young host did as well. Her name was Sha’re and she knew her life could soon be over. Amonet never revealed to me the reasons for wanting a human child, but during those first weeks of her pregnancy when the host emerged, Sha’re asked me to write a letter to her husband. I was told you know the human well.”

Emetjer’s frail, slender fingers came from under the blanket holding a small parchment tightly rolled, which she slowly moved towards Teal’c. “Sha’re could not write well so I helped her. I swear upon my honor that I wrote exactly as she dictated. My request is that you take the letter and decide if this message needs to reach its destination. It is now your burden.”

Emetjer directed her vivid dark eyes towards Teal’c for a long moment, gave him a small smile, and fell into a deep, exhausted sleep.

Putting the message inside the folds of his robe, Teal’c left the house and found his way home choosing a more circuitous but quiet route. What was it that O’Neill used to say about allowing resting canines to recline?

In the shady room that served as his office, Teal’c sat down at a table and put the roll in front of him. Did he have the right to read it and know its contents? Emetjer, who had served with him under Apophis as first companion to the Queen, who had supported them, Brat’ac and him, in every way she could, had now passed this responsibility on to him.

Her hesitation in delivering the message did not bode well. Did it involve the kind of information that reopened old wounds and made things worse? Alas, there was only one way to find out. Teal’c untied the knotted cord and opened the roll. Emetjer’s elegant and vaguely familiar handwriting filled the page with Goa’uld glyphs. He read it in English, automatically translating it in his head.


To Daniel of the Tau’ri,

This is from Sha’re, the young woman who was once your wife.
I know that my departure left you heartbroken. Do not grieve.
I was chosen by a magnificent Queen to be her chariot.
Do not shed any more tears for I am following a new path.
I am loved by a God and allowed to rule over thousands.
I wish you to understand that our marriage ended as I
assumed my royal status as Queen Amonet’s host and
entered this new life and new role for the good of our subjects.
You must understand, I was the daughter of a chieftain;
I was raised to prevail in the most adverse situations,
a strong warrior that helped defeat Ra and his hold on us.
I made you stay by my side because you were so valiant and
rose above everyone else with such ease. Well educated, you
taught me much about what existed well beyond Abydos.
When Apophis took me, I was scared at first, but soon enough
I accepted willingly what I was able to do in my new position.
Only the powerful comprehend the responsibility of leadership
and the actions that must be taken for the good of all peoples,
even if they must suffer at times. Such is life and the fate of all.
Amonet and I understand each other and work together
to make Apophis stronger and become Supreme System Lord
by having a powerful child who can help us achieve this aim.
I am with a great Queen who deserves a System Lord capable
of reaching far enough to seek the ancient gate-builders
to learn their secrets so we may rival their mighty feats
and keep their wisdom away from the rapacious grasp
of our foolish enemies, blind to the glorious vision and power
of the Goa’uld. Queen Amonet wants a path through which
the Goa’uld rule supreme and establish their stable order and
peace is assured for all the future children she is yet to birth.
Much weighs in the balance but Apophis will prevail even if
our enemies make this fate uncertain. I will have his child in
a place safe from those who covet him until he is born in
secret. I will leave this letter behind for you so you will know
that is no longer necessary for you to pursue Apophis as
I am no longer yours. Now you must follow your own path.
Tau’ri, your meddling will lead to your destruction. Beware.

Sha’re

Teal’c considered the disturbing content of the rambling letter. There was enough truth in it to make it plausible but the accounts of who Sha’re was did not fit comfortably with the words on the page.

He trusted Emetjer as much as he trusted Master Bra’tac. Could Amonet have made Sha’re write such a message? There were mind techniques available to use on the host when the symbiote needed to be suppressed for a time.

Perhaps Amonet wished to demoralize Daniel Jackson, whose relentless pursuit of her threatened Apophis. Or maybe she needed to convince Apophis of her own loyalty in some way.

If Sha’re was indeed a power-hungry despot, then their last encounter on Abydos when she gave birth had a been a ruse to secure Daniel’s help for an aim only the Goa’uld knew. Was Amonet trying to usurp Apophis’ power? That would explain her silence about their presence as she left the planet. In fact, both symbiote and host had cooperated to convince Daniel to save the harcesis when everything seemed lost.

Yet, Daniel had loved the Abydonian woman and he was a good judge of character. Or was he? Shyla, Ke’ra, even the names of those he inadvertently helped like Hathor, Osiris, and Adria came to mind. Had not Vala Mal Doran fit into this pattern once?
Teal’c put the letter down and closed his eyes. Emetjer had said the letter was a burden. Could this message lift the guilt that Daniel had carried on his shoulders for such a long time? Or would it cause him further agony?

Full of dread, Teal’c lifted his eyes from the curling parchment in front of him and looked at the sky beyond his window. There were no answers there. Yet he knew. Things never turned out well when keeping secrets from friends.

====

Daniel was surprised but very pleased that Teal’c had decided to gate back to Earth after taking an indefinite leave of absence in order to serve once more in the Jaffa Council. He waited for his friend to finish up at the infirmary and then escorted him to his office.
Teal’c looked around the familiar, cluttered place and smiled.

“Have a seat. This gotta be important if you’ve come all this way to see me.”

“Indeed.” Teal’c hesitated and Daniel raised his eyebrows in concern.

“Everything okay?”

“Everything is fine. Daniel Jackson, I was asked to carry out a duty that is not a pleasant one. An old Jaffa comrade of Brat’ac and mine, called Emetjer, gave me a letter. She served under Amonet and later became a member of the Jaffa resistance. On her deathbed she told me she wrote this letter on behalf of Sha’re when she first became pregnant. The content is disturbing, so Emetjer waited to pass this along until the very end. I also considered not bringing you this letter, but I decided that I must trust you with it.”

With a simple gesture, Teal’c took the parchment roll out of the folds of his robe and gave it to Daniel. “I apologize. I had to read this letter before I could pass it on to you.”
Daniel nodded and looked at the small roll. With some trepidation he took it, loosened the cords that fastened it, and opened it on the table. Grabbing the curling ends he read the text and by the time he reached the end he was pale, his eyes full of tears.

“This doesn’t make any sense… She wasn’t like that. She wouldn’t…”

“I am afraid I am not able to offer much assistance, but hosts can be susceptible to various kinds of mind control. The letter could have been written in order to demoralize you.”

“You trust this Emetjer?”

“I do.”

“And she doubted its veracity?”

“She doubted its intent.”

Daniel looked at the letter, really looked at the text, its funny repetitions, the awkward diction, its careful margins, the meanings that only mean between the lines. And then he saw it.

“This is a coded letter! In fact it has such a simple code that I’m surprised you didn’t see it. Read it by skipping every other line.”

Teal’c raised his eyebrow. “We do not use this code. It is clever.”

“She probably expected others would read it and most likely destroy it.” Daniel took the parchment and decoded the text in English, correcting, when necessary, the punctuation as he read it to Teal’c.

I know that my departure left you heartbroken. Do not grieve. Do not shed any more tears for I am following a new path. I wish you to understand that our marriage ended as I entered this new life and new role for the good of our subjects. I was raised to prevail in the most adverse situations. I made you stay by my side because you were so valiant and taught me much about what existed well beyond Abydos. I accepted willingly what I was able to do in my new position and the actions that must be taken for the good of all peoples. Amonet and I understand each other and work together by having a powerful child who can help us achieve this aim of reaching far enough to seek the ancients gate-builders and keep their wisdom away from the rapacious grasp of the Goa’uld. Queen Amonet wants a path through which peace is assured for all the future children she is yet to birth. Our enemies make this fate uncertain. I will have this child in secret. I will leave this letter behind for you so you will know I am no longer yours. Now you must follow your own path. Sha're.

“Thank you for trusting me with this letter Teal’c. Do you believe Amonet really wanted peace?”

“Sometimes Queens desired peaceful conditions because that made their propagation easier, but it is hard to judge what Amonet’s intentions were.”

“Fair enough. But Sha’re trusted her and in the end, it’s a relief to know that she wasn't so helpless and was able to find some meaning in her short life,” Daniel said as he carefully wrapped the letter and put it in a box he kept in his office with mementos from his life in Abydos. Now, it all seemed so long ago.

With a light movement, Daniel patted Teal’c’s broad shoulder as they left his office on the way to the mess hall. It was lunchtime and there would be many friends happy to see the big guy. Daniel felt lighter, as if the planet’s gravity had suddenly lessened.

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C is for Crossword Puzzle
by [personal profile] solstice0612



Jump to the bottom of this entry for the solution!
puzzle / solution


D is for Daniel's Different Diary
by [personal profile] topazowl

Near the beginning of Children of the Gods

Dear Mom and Dad

It took me a long time to forgive you for leaving me all those years ago even though I know it wasn’t your fault but I am back from the most wonderful and devastating experience of my life (after losing you two) and I suddenly felt compelled to write it down in a letter to you rather than my usual journal entry. I hope that you would be proud of me – I followed in your footsteps and got to be an archaeologist; well, actually, I have 3 PhD’s: Archaeology, Anthropology and Linguistics and I’ve been using all three.

The most extraordinary thing happened. I had been researching the age of the pyramids and was sure that they were older than everyone claimed so, I gave a lecture to present my findings. Unfortunately, no one believed me; in fact, I was ridiculed BUT, on leaving, I was approached by an elderly lady called Catherine Langford. I wonder if you would have known the name. Her father did a lot of work in Egypt in the late 1920’s. Anyway, she basically asked me to work for her.

I really wondered what I had let myself in for as I ended up working for the American military, Air Force to be exact. They needed some glyphs translating and I did it! I’m gonna boast here as I solved what the military had been working on for over 2 years in just 2 weeks! Anyway, what they had found was a huge ring, and I mean gigantic, I can’t touch the top or both sides at the same time and it was made of an unknown material and we made it work! When it is activated, it looks like a huge upright puddle in the circle of the Stargate – that’s what I translated the writings about it to mean.

So, a military team was put together to go through it, headed by a pulled out of retirement, very depressed Colonel named Jack O’Neil. I managed to convince them I had to go with a slight white lie – I told them I knew how to get us back which wasn’t strictly true but I did get them back so it all worked out OK in the end.

We found ourselves, after a very quick but nauseating trip, on another planet. Yes, really, another planet called Abydos and it seems that the people there were of Egyptian descent. But they were slaves to a so called God named Ra!! Who we killed. And we freed the Abydonians. And I married the chief’s daughter, Sha’re. And…they left me on Abydos. I had a wonderful year with Sha’re, her father, Kasuf and her brother, Skaara and loads of other really good people.

Then, a few days ago, a box of tissues came through the Stargate. Why, you may ask? Well, not only have I inherited your eye problems but I do suffer quite badly from allergies and spend a lot of time sneezing, especially without antihistamine (and I had been over a year without it!). It was Jack’s way of communicating with me and he came through with a team including a Captain Doctor Samantha Carter; we hit it off straight away – she’s a geek, like me but into astrophysics so she loses me a lot in conversations but she does me the courtesy of listening when I expound about archaeology so I will listen to her (and try to follow). Jack just gets distracted but I think he listens more than he lets on.

Anyway, I’m rambling. But it’s not all been good. Another of these so called Gods arrived, called Apophis, and he took my Sha’re and Skaara. I was, am devastated; I didn’t know what to do as Apophis took them through the Stargate and we have no idea as to where. Anyway, Jack had orders to take me back to Earth so I came back and again insisted on being on Jack’s team; you see, I had a lever in that I had discovered a cartouche on Abydos with a lot of gate addresses on it so I’m on the team. Jack has been very good in that he took me to his house so I didn’t have to stay in this awful base that is over 20 floors underground.

Tomorrow, we hope we are off on our first trip as Ferretti remembered the gate address where Sha’re and Skaara were taken. My aim of getting on this team is to find Sha’re. So wish me luck, Mom and Dad. Guess you never thought you would have a galactic explorer in the family! I wish you were here; I have so much I want to tell you but I have found this quite cathartic so I may write more. I’m not really religious; what little I’ve seen out there is enough to make anyone’s faith waver. I hope I will be back but, if not, I now know I was right and the pyramids are a lot older than everyone thinks and there looks like there are many worlds out there to explore.

Your loving son
Daniel

After The Enemy Within

Dear Mom and Dad

Well, have I had more adventures! We left the SGC (that’s Stargate Command, under General Hammond who I think is beginning to tolerate me) and ended up on a planet where Colonel O’Neill, Captain Carter and I got captured and Major Kawalsky got Goa’ulded. That was horrible. Anyway, it seems that these so called Gods are actually parasites that live wrapped around the spine and brainstem of humans and they take over their body and mind – it sounds awful and that is what’s happened to my Sha’re. She was there, on that planet but didn’t seem to recognise me. In order to try and get closer to her, I stupidly volunteered to have one of these Goa’uld but, in hindsight, I was so lucky not to be chosen. We had found Skaara there but, unfortunately he got chosen instead of me. Jack certainly tore me off a strip about pushing forward. He and I have an uneasy friendship but I do respect him, even if he is military; he’s not so blinkered as to be a real stickler for the rules and I certainly think I trust him on my six – that means he’s looking after me apparently. I don’t think I need looking after but he thinks I do and, to be fair, although I can shoot a gun and I am a pretty fast runner, I am out of shape and I am gonna have to start working out if I want to keep this up and I do!

I need to keep looking for Sha’re. We now have a team of four of us, Jack, Sam and an alien warrior named Teal’c who we sort of picked up on the planet we visited. We are going to be visiting other planets in search of weapons to help fight the Goa’uld and to find Sha’re and Skaara. When I saw what happened to Major Kawalsky, who unfortunately is now dead, or maybe fortunately for him, I can’t bear to think about what my poor Sha’re must be going through. Anyway, we escaped from that planet where we were being held by Apophis and Teal’c who was his first prime, like his 2IC (second in Command, sorry, I’m picking up the military speak already), defected and is now working with us. He’s a really big, black guy and I bet he can kick a**. (I’m already beginning to sound like Jack!)

We are off on a “routine” mission tomorrow although nothing seems to be routine about this job but I love it. It can be pretty scary but the things I am finding out are amazing.

Your loving son
Daniel

After The Broca Divide and Brief Candle

Dear Mom and Dad

We are finally back from Argos with Jack. We all thought he was a goner this time and it made me realise one thing – for the first time in my life since you guys went, I actually feel part of something here. That is no reflection on you at all but I’ve missed you so much and now I feel like I have a surrogate family who actually looks out for one another and that includes me! We had been to a planet where Pelobes had set up a human community but they only lived for 100 days; it was Goa’uld technology or, at least, tech that they had scavenged. Basically, it was nano technology and Jack got infected and started to age rather rapidly. His own fault – he got seduced by a very pretty woman! I think he’s learned his lesson now and we shall all be far more careful about what we eat when we go “abroad” – he ate a piece of cake with the nanobots in! Sam and Janet – have I mentioned Dr Janet Fraiser? – they found a cure and he’s home now.

Janet – yes, she’s the medical officer in charge of this facility and she is great. She is very open minded (you have to be in this job) and works as hard as the rest of us. We first met when I was my “turn” to contract an alien bug as well as Sam and Jack – I actually experienced the Broca Divide, Mom and Dad. It was awesome but terrifying. Quite a few of us regressed but I was the last before it was sorted because of all those antihistamines I have to take – they were keeping this bug at bay but I eventually succumbed. Janet realised it was due to histamine levels and now everyone on Tuplo’s planet, which they call the Land of Light, is back to normal. Their planet doesn’t rotate like Earth so they always live in the light! I always though the rotation was what kept us on Earth – obviously it’s not a standard requirement!

So we are all back, safe and sound. I have loads of research to do, especially as I got to see an ancient Greek society and experience the Broca Divide for myself and in a Minoan type culture too!

Your loving son
Daniel

After The Torment of Tantalus

Dear Mom and Dad

You just won’t believe what I have just experienced – a universal language possibly formulated by four great races! And we just rescued a man who had been stranded for 50 years. To be honest, words fail me, especially as it is probably all destroyed now! I wanted to stay, to learn, to translate but Jack pulled me away and now that I am back on Earth, I suppose I am grateful … but all that learning!!!

The place was pretty unstable but I think our arrival must have added to the instability and the building began to fall into the sea. We lost the DVD (that’s the device we use to dial the gate) and Sam, Jack and Teal’c had to harness the power of the storm to get the gate working so we got back home and brought Ernest with us, who turns out to be Catherine’s finance. She had been told he was dead and, I suppose to all intents and purposes, he was! I wonder if they still love each other after all these years.

It was hard, leaving all that knowledge behind. I videoed a bit of it – I don’t think the technology was around in such a small form whilst, well, whilst you were still here. A video camera – it takes movies and it will almost fit in the palm of my hand; it’s almost always with me and at least I can catch a snapshot of the places we visit. I hope I shall be able to translate some of the walls and maybe what we decided was a universal language but it was a holographic projection so I am not sure how good it will be.

Ah, Jack’s just come in; gotta go.

Your loving son
Daniel

After There but for the Grace

Dear Mom and Dad

I haven’t had an urge to write my journal as a letter to you for a while. We have been very busy, exploring “out there” and I have had a few nasty experiences that I found difficult to process. One was when a large fish-like being captured me and made Jack, Sam and Teal’c think I was dead. That was not good but they came back for me. I later learned that Jack had smashed General Hammond’s car window as he was upset and the three of them were finding it difficult as they weren’t quite sure I was really gone and I wasn’t! You know, it’s good to have people care; I have been so alone in my life and never had people worry about like this before. It’s nice.

We met some other Aliens too. You know, the goddess, Hathor is not what she claims to be! She was not a nice person but the Nox were lovely, such a calm and peaceful people. We only met a handful of them but they saved our lives, literally. In addition, we met a robot called Harlan who made copies of us – that was weird, I was talking to myself! We also came upon a place that had been devastated but we found one survivor, a little girl named Cassandra; she lives with Janet now and I’m actually a surrogate uncle – that feels good.

Anyway, to tell you about my latest experience, I touched a mirror and ended up in an alternative reality! Sam says that scientists have postulated the possibility of infinity realities, depending on the choices we make; well, in the reality I went to, I obviously chose not to go to Cheyanne Mountain after meeting Catherine because I was nowhere to be seen and it was a disaster! I’m not saying I’m the key to Earth’s survival, that would be unforgivably arrogant, but that Earth was under attack by Apophis and Teal’c was still his First Prime. Jack was not a nice person in that reality but that may have just been the circumstances under which I met him and he was engaged to Sam who wasn’t military – that was bizarre and unreal. In the military set up, Jack and Sam could not have a relationship anyway and, although I know that they care deeply for each other, I can’t imagine them as a couple!

It was all really scary and, as Earth was about to be over-run by Apophis and his army of Jaffa warriors, I managed to convince the people of their Stargate Command to open the gate for me. As I escaped through the wormhole, Teal’c blasted me with his staff weapon but I think he must have sensed something because it wasn’t a killing shot but those blasts are so painful. They sear your skin and any clothing tends to get stuck in the wound and, when Janet took care of it, removing the debris was excruciatingly uncomfortable.

Now, I have the most difficult job of convincing people that we could be under attack, imminently. No-one seems to be taking me seriously. I thought I had built up enough trust and respect for, at least, SG1 to listen but they are struggling to comprehend. You’d think me turning up with a staff blast to my shoulder in a room where no Jaffa had been for months would be a bit of a giveaway that something odd had happened. I am feeling rather let down.

Scratch that – Jack’s just been in and we are going to that gate address I had scrawled on the piece of paper I had. Must go kit up.

Love you
Daniel

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E is for Eternal Writing Struggles
Five times Daniel Jackson didn't finish his writing – and one time he did
by [personal profile] immertreu

1. Stargate (The Movie) / Children of the Gods

“Dan'yel, what are you writing?” Sha're asked her husband. He was busy scribbling away on a clay tablet he'd made with his own hands, scratching as many markings into the still wet material before it dried up and turned too hard for his purpose.

His brow was furrowed, his eyes intent behind the glasses he needed to be able to read. The light from the flickering fire he was using as a light source gave him a mysterious look Sha're secretly cherished.

Daniel didn't react for a long moment while Sha're patiently looked on. When he finally gazed up, he smiled bashfully at his beautiful wife.

“Uh, what?” he asked, rubbing his eyes under his glasses and realizing that Sha're was still waiting for an answer. Work always had this effect on him that he forgot his time and place in the universe. Add to that the sight of his lovely, intelligent, courageous wife, and he even forgot how to speak or think.

Sha're laughed out loud at this. She'd long learned to accept and even love his eccentricities. It was what made life with him so much more interesting. Before she could repeat her question, though, her brother's voice interrupted.

“I think he is writing 'The Epistle of Dan'yel',” Skaara joked, remembering what Daniel had told them about the Bible and the various beliefs on Earth.

Daniel and Sha're snorted in unison, sharing an amused glance.

“Not quite,” Daniel finally said, switching to Abydonian so Skaara would have an easier time following his words. “I was only trying to record the events of last year, how we defeated Ra and his Jaffa, and reclaimed your freedom.”

Skaara perked up at that. “Are you finished?” he asked curiously.

Daniel sighed and shook his head. “No, I'm not. It is difficult to translate my ideas into written Abydonian. And it's slow work, so I have only reached the moment when Ra and his ship descended onto the pyramid.”

“Oh.” Skaara looked disappointed at this, but then he perked up. “Never mind that then,” he said with renewed enthusiasm. “You will soon have even more to write about.”

Daniel gazed at him sharply. “What do you mean?” he demanded.

“I came to tell you, we have finally dug out the Chappa'ai again.”

“So soon?!” Daniel jumped up and ran out of the room, leaving behind his amused wife, his bemused brother-in-law, and the clay tablet, forgotten by the fire until it crumbled into dust.


2. The Torment of Tantalus

“You're not gonna finish that essay, are you?”

Jack O'Neill had appeared in the doorway of Daniel's office with a scowl on his face and his arms securely crossed in front of his chest, ready for a fight. Funny, wasn't this usually Daniel's stance when things didn't go his way?

Not bothering to look up, SG-1's resident archaeologist and walking dictionary continued hacking notes and observations about their recent mission to PB2-908 and its consequences, the remnants of the mysterious races they had encountered, and Ernest Littlefield's experiences into his computer.

“Daniel?” Jack tried again, an edge creeping into his tone.

Daniel finally stopped his manic typing and spared his team leader a short glance before turning back to his work. “What?!” he asked, impatient and not in the mood for one of Jack's lectures. Yes, he'd screwed up – again. He'd almost died – again. So what else was new?

“Daniel.” This time, it was a sigh.

Jack uncrossed his arms and finally stepped into the cluttered room. He picked up a tiny statue of a goat – or was that a sheep? – that sat strategically placed within his reach on a nearby shelf, and started fiddling with it. “You do know that you'll never be able to publish, right?”

With a frustrated and angry huff, Daniel hit the enter key with more force than strictly necessary, saving his draft, and finally turned to look up at Jack with squinting eyes. Ouch, how long had he been down here? A glance at his watch made him wince. Far too long. Obviously. Or Jack wouldn't have come looking for him.

Rubbing a hand across his tired face, Daniel got up to pour himself another mug of coffee from the pot by the door – only to find it empty. “Great,” he muttered, putting down the cup and turning back to Jack, knowing there was no way he could avoid the confrontation now.

Instead of the expected argument, he got a surprise.

Jack clapped him on the shoulder and started to steer him out the door. “Come on, you need food.” Forestalling any further protests, he grabbed Daniel by the arm and dragged him along in the direction of the mess hall. “I know how important your work is, and that you're great at it, but this thing you've been obsessing over for the past few days isn't going anywhere, not unless the Stargate Program becomes public knowledge and you – and yes, Ernest, too – can finally get the recognition you deserve.”

Startled, Daniel ground to a halt in the middle of the hallway, forcing Jack, who hadn't let go, to stop as well. “What?” he repeated dumbly, his brain not able to process Jack's deviation from his usual rules of using simple sentences and not inundating his resident troublemaker with undue praise.

Jack merely grinned and started walking again, tightening his grip on Daniel's biceps while rattling off, “What, you want me to spell it out for you? No? Okay, let's go. I'm hungry!”

Internally shaking his head, Daniel finally regained his footing and tagged along. Damn it, but he hated it when Jack was right.

One day, though, Ernest Littlefield would be remembered for the brave deeds he had done. And the world would know what wonders lay out there in the vastness of the galaxy.

One day.


3. Fire and Water

Daniel had been staring at his computer screen for more than an hour. His unfinished e-mail sat there, glaring at him accusingly. And shouldn't that be the other way around?

Rubbing his tired eyes, he questioned his motive of writing this message to his estranged grandfather for the hundredth time that day. Re-reading the first paragraph definitely didn't help with his decision on whether to send it or not.

Dear Nick,

Just so you know, I'm not dead after all. I don't even know if you got the notice, but in case you did: Well, I didn't drown (I think that was the official cause of death on my death certificate). It was all a mistake. So, uh, if you get this and maybe want to talk again sometime, just send me a message. By the way, last week was Mom and Dad's anniversary...


Disgusted with himself, Daniel shook his head violently to clear it. When the world finally stopped spinning again – and wasn't that a very familiar feeling these days? – he marked the text he'd painstakingly written and deleted it just as Sam poked her head into his room.

“Ready to bust out of here?” she asked, cheerful and happy to see her recovered teammate alive and well although still a little bedraggled and far too thin. At least he didn't smell like sea water anymore.

Forcing a grin for her benefit, Daniel closed the program and shut down his computer. “Yeah, Sam, let's get Jack and Teal'c and some pizza.”

Grabbing his jacket from his other chair, he pushed the guilt away. Nick had never been interested in his disappointment of a grandson anyway.

Right?


4. Evolution

Dr. William Lee showed bravery in the face of unforeseen violence and ...

Swallowing convulsively, Daniel stopped typing and turned away from the screen, shivers of dread shaking his frame.

His ordeal in Honduras was over. Daniel and Bill had been home for more than two weeks, but the nightmares and memories still wouldn't go away.

Some sane part of Daniel's psyche laughed at the silly idea that the archaeologist turned adventurer turned warrior would be able to shrug off such torture and pain in a span of a dozen days or so. The other, childish half of him screamed for release, for it all to just go away, not to have to remember anymore...

Close to panic now, Daniel jumped up, turned around – and bumped into something soft and solid at the same time. His hands shot up to defend himself against the unexpected assailant, but his wrists were caught in a strong yet gentle grip. “DanielJackson,” a deep voice rumbled above him and brought him back to the here and now. Teal'c!

Embarrassed, Daniel stepped back and regarded the Jaffa filling his doorway, blocking out the light from the hall. “Sorry,” he mumbled, unconsciously rubbing his now free hands together. “I didn't see you there.”

An expressively raised eyebrow was the not so succinct reply. “May I inquire about what you were doing?”

Daniel shrugged, trying to appear nonchalant. “I was writing up Dr. Lee's evaluation. He's up for a raise.” He knew he wasn't fooling Teal'c one bit, though. His hands were shaking. He was sweating. Great, another flashback.

“Hmm.” The big man thought about it for a moment, not asking any more questions Daniel wasn't yet ready to answer. Then he stepped aside and gestured for his teammate to precede him into the hallway. “Will you accompany me, DanielJackson?” he asked.

Daniel knew it for the command it was. Giving in to the inevitable – it was either this or being dragged to the infirmary again – he stepped out into the corridor. Teal'c followed suit, and together they walked to the Jaffa's quarters on base. Once there, Teal'c motioned for Daniel to sit down on one of the meditation pillows scattered across the floor, and proceeded to light every single candle in the room.

Daniel didn't offer to help. His hands were shaking too badly and besides, preparing for meditation was almost as important to Teal'c as the act itself.

When the Jaffa finally sat down opposite Daniel, he had recovered enough from his remembered ordeal to look at Teal'c quizzically. “Is this your new technique of dealing with everything?” he asked, half in jest, half serious. This wasn't the first time he'd been dragged off for an impromptu meditation session since his return from the Ascended. It probably wouldn't be the last.

Teal'c almost smiled, which Daniel counted as a win. It was still hard to get the Jaffa to show any emotional reaction at all, so the slight twitch of his lips was as good as it would get.

“No, it is not,” came the half-humorous reply. “I think calming down will help us both regain our equilibrium, though.”

Daniel opened his mouth to protest Teal'c's assumption, but his friend wasn't finished.

“You are not expected to do everything at once, DanielJackson,” Teal'c admonished. “You have just begun to heal.” His stern gaze dared the archaeologist to protest.

Quailing under the knowing look, too tired to fight and knowing he wouldn't have to, not here, Daniel finally nodded and acquiesced, closing his eyes. There was no one here to see him giving in, and Teal'c would never tell.

Daniel had a reputation to uphold, after all.


5. Unending

Silence reigned. Odyssey hung in space, protected and detained at once by the time dilation field that had saved SG-1's lives and the knowledge the Asgard had bestowed upon their human friends. But at what cost?

Everyone else was asleep. Daniel sat alone, as close to the “window” as he could, curled up against the cold metal separating him from space. He looked out at the Ori energy beam threatening to tear them apart.

Would that really be so bad?

The notebook the ship's computer had created for him balanced on his knees, Daniel contemplated the past fifty years – and the additional decade leading up to this moment in relative time. There had been so many successes. So many failures. So much pain and love and happiness. Friendships found and lost. Enemies conquered, allies gained, only to be destroyed again.

And for what?

Chewing on the pencil in his right hand, Daniel made a decision. He put the point to paper and started to write about whatever crossed his mind, for once not caring about order or logic or doing it right, switching between languages without even noticing.

What better place and time to finally get lost in words and thoughts and memories?

This was the end.

Until suddenly, it wasn't.


+1

Do not mourn
For I am at peace

Do not regret my choice
For I made it knowingly

Remember our purpose
Not just here on Earth

Remember how we met
And how we parted

Do not mourn for me
I go in peace
Never to return

Sam choked out Daniel's last, prophetic words she had found among his belongings and broke down sobbing. She clung to Jack for support, not caring who saw strong, independent Carter cry. Teal'c took her arm, and Vala and Mitchell inched closer yet.

Together SG-1 stood and said goodbye, a silent elegy wailing in their hearts.

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F is for FAO (For Attention Of)
by [profile] madders_ahatter


Stargate Command
Internal Memo
From the desk of General George Hammond

FAO: All Stargate Personnel (Colonel O’Neill this means you too!)

It has come to my attention that an illicit gambling ‘pool’ has been operating out of the mess hall for some time.

This must cease IMMEDIATELY.

You are all well aware that it is against regulations for such betting to take place on government property. Furthermore, the subject matter of these wagers is by no means appropriate, nor yet ethical. I am disappointed in all those who have participated.

I am prepared to let this matter rest and take no further official action, provided I receive assurances it will not happen again.

I leave it to Dr. Daniel Jackson to decide how he wants to deal with his so-called friends, who think there is sport to be made in predicting how long it will be before he dies again.

George Hammond

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G is for Let Me Google That for You
by [personal profile] splash_the_cat

Cassie's phone chirped. And chirped. And chirped.

"Caaaassss," Amir groaned, yanking the pillow out from under her head to drag it over his.

She groped around on her nightstand, but no phone. They'd come back from the bar a little tipsy, and she had no recollection of where she'd put her phone.

It chirped again.

"Caaaaasssss," came a muffled whine from under the pillow. "Fix your phoooooooone."

Pants. Right. It was probably in her pants' pocket. She crawled out of the bed and blearily searched the floor until she found them. Digging her phone out, she glared at its calm, glowing presentation of the time: 5:40 a.m. The offensive hour was replaced by another chirp and a Google Hangout alert:

JACK
Are you asleep? Don't you have class?

When she opened the app she found:

JACK: Cass.
JACK: Hey Cassie.
JACK: You there?
JACK: You asleep?

"Oh for crying out loud," she said.

"Cass?" Amir's sleepy voice tried for concern, but mostly failed. "Everything okay?"

"Yeah, it's just Jack," she said. Amir huffed a laugh, said, "Have fun," and burrowed back under the covers. She'd told Jack about Google Hangouts and set up one up for him and Daniel, hoping to give him another avenue to track down Daniel, rather than Jack calling her and asking her to text Daniel to call him, because "Daniel never pays attention when I text him to call me."

Clearly she had miscalculated. Cassie crawled back into bed and typed:

CASS: WHAT
JACK: Morning, sunshine.
CASS: WHAT DO YOU WANT
JACK: How do you spell scrumptious?

Cassie stared at the correctly-spelled word on her screen.

CASSIE: http://dictionary.reference.com/
JACK: That doesn't look right either.
CASSIE: OMG
JACK: Language, young lady.

"Agh!" Cassie threw her phone (gently) onto the other end of the bed and pulled her pillow away from Amir and over her head.

*********************
Her undergrads were clustered around the room working on their group discussion section projects, so when her phone vibrated in her pocket she slumped down behind the table at the head of the classroom and wiggled it out. Amir was due to hear about a big grant today, and she wanted to stop on the way home and pick up appropriate provisions for whichever way his news went.

It wasn't Amir.

JACK: Whatcha doing?
CASS: working
JACK: On what?
CASS: teaching class, and taking notes for a paper
JACK: I thought you were past the homework stage.
CASS: its for publication i'm trying to get it out so i can have something in print when i start going on the job market this summer
JACK: What's it about?
JACK: Use small words

It used to make her so angry, how Jack played dumb, but her own experiences as she got older, in hiding what she was, and what she knew, finally made her understand a little more about the utility of masks and buffers and controlling people's perceptions of you, even if that perception wasn't flattering.

CASS: semiotics
JACK: That is not a small word.
CASS: what stuff means
JACK: Is this like a Daniel thing?
CASS: kind of
JACK: Oh hey, speaking of what stuff means, I wanted to ask you, what does "meme" mean? Is that some internet slang for selfish people? Like "Me me me"? T keeps sending them to me, and I want to know if I should be insulted.

One of her students had shuffled up to the desk and skittered back a little as she snorted a laugh. "Sorry," she said, and quickly keyed in:

CASS: http://lmgtfy.com/

*******************

JACK:Okay, some lady at the coffee shop invited me to "netflix and chill."

The sound she let out turned heads in her direction three tables out, and she waved a weak apology to the other library patrons as she clamped her other hand over her mouth and dissolved into helpless, choked giggles that only got worse until she ducked out of the study room and leaned against the wall outside, clutching her phone as she gulped for air. Every time she looked at the text from Jack, though, she started laughing again, until tears ran down her face and she had to find a bathroom and some paper towel.

Ten minutes later she crept back to her table in the study room and had to bite her lip hard to keep from starting up all over again when she considered sending Jack a link to Urban Dictionary. But as hilarious as that would be, she had to get work done today, so instead she sent:

CASSIE:http://ask.reference.com/

********************

JACK:Carter wants to know if you're eating your vegetables
CASS:http://www.cdc.gov/listeria/outbreaks/
JACK:Farmer's markets. Embrace them.

*******************

Cass came out of the kitchen bouncing the casserole dish in her hands, the worn oven mitts not enough against the heat, to see Amir frowning at his phone. "Everything okay?" she asked as she deftly slid off one mitt as a trivet for the dish without singeing her fingers, a trick she'd learned from years of watching her Mom do it, like some sort of fancy Earth magic.

"Did you give Jack my phone number?"

"No," she said, baffled. Amir held his phone out to her as she shucked off the other oven mitt.

JACK:Hey, Amir.
JACK:I'd say nice to meet you, but I haven't yet.
JACK:Is Cass trying to hide something?
JACK:Hmmmm?

Cassie fell into her chair and thudded her forehead against the table before grabbing her phone and stabbing the text icon.

CASSIE:Jack O'Neill, stop using government utilities to find out my boyfriend's cell number
JACK: Then maybe you should bring him home sometime. Teal'c's met him DANIEL'S met him. What gives?
CASSIE:Sam hasn't met him
JACK: Doesn't count, considering she's in OUTER SPACE. And she said she talked to him on video chat last week
CASSIE:...
CASSIE:...
CASSIE:OK FINE

Cassie put her phone in her pocket and spooned lentil stew onto her plate. "So," she said, "How do you feel abou-"

Amir's phone beeped. He stared at it for a long moment before he raised one eyebrow and looked up at Cassie. "Why did Jack send me link to Expedia?"

Cassie just sighed and shoved the dish of stew across the table to Amir. "Want to go to D.C. next weekend?"

********************

When she got out of the shower, she found Amir still sprawled across the bed, furiously typing on his phone. As she towel-dried her hair, she heard him laugh, and when she peered out from between the damp strands covering her eyes, saw him grin as he tossed his phone onto the nightstand and head into the bathroom.

The last time she'd seen him grin like that was when he and Jack had been trading fishing stories when they flew up to D.C. last month. She sidled around the side of the bed so she could see what was on the screen before it locked. Sure enough...

"You're texting Jack!?"

"Wha?" Amir ducked his head out of the bathroom, toothbush hanging out of the corner of his mouth. "Ja's grea'!"

Cassie marched back around the bed to grab her phone.

CASS: no ganging up on me
CASS: i mean it
CASS: no using my boyfriend to spy on me
JACK: You're no fun.
JACK: But that's okay. I already have people for that.

********************


JACK:I'm hip, right?
CASS:as in the kind you might break?
JACK:I got you a dog, young lady. Show some respect.
JACK:No, but really, Teal'c said this means ice cream: [emoji]
CASS: totally
********************


JACK:Amir said it is NOT ICE CREAM, CASSANDRA
CASS:[emoji]
********************
Cassie had just started to doze off when her phone chirped in her ear. Next to her, Amir groaned and flailed a hand in the general direction of her nightstand before burrowing into the blankets like a mole.

"Fine," she muttered and grabbed the phone. 12:42 a.m. it blinked solemnly as a Hangout alert popped up:

JACK:Oh hey, been meaning to mention this. I read your paper.

Cassie untangled herself from the blankets so she could sit up against the headboard. She stared at the message, blinking uncomprehendingly, before typing:

CASS:what paper?
JACK:The one you mentioned a few months ago.
JACK:About the meaning of "stuff"
JACK:Lots of big words, but that urban.dictionary site helped a lot
JACK:Or was that dictionary.com?
JACK:Anyway, good stuff.
CASSIE: what? how did you find it
JACK: Jstor linked to it. The journal website has it all online, you know.

Her phone chirped again.

JACK: Come on, Cass. I do know how to use Google.
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H is for History
by [personal profile] tallulah_rasa

To: Dr. Benjamin John, Editor, Ph.D., Journal of Historical Research and Theory
From: Dr. Janet S. Rehs-Fargler, Ph.D.
Date: December 9, 2116
Subject: Book review for upcoming issue

Ben—

It was great to see you at the conference last month! I’m so glad you decided to go ahead with the special issue on 20th Century figures. Understanding the motives and personalities of these people — not to mention what they chose to write about — can, I think, shed real light on current world and galactic affairs, and help us see not only how we got here, but why.

Here’s the draft of the article we talked about. Thanks again for taking my suggestion about the book; as you guessed, the subject’s a particular interest of mine. I’ve added an author’s note relating to that at the end, but read the article first, okay?

I’ll be tied up grading exams for the next few weeks (time marches on, but academia never changes), but we can talk after the first of the year. In the meantime, say hi to Chris and the kids!

Jan




On a Kind of Telephone Line Through Time
a review of
As It Was Written:
Selected Letters and Journal Entries of Dr. Daniel Jackson
Volume 1: 1994-2004
edited by Dr. Adam Pierson
October, 2116. 534 pp.
Terran Edition: University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL, USA.
Interstellar Editions: Amazon-Google Press, New York and Atlantis.
USBN: Tn376 42300 6738



History, they say, is written by the victors. It’s also written by those keen observers who, despite an uncertainty about (or disregard for) the definition of "victory," persevere through seemingly insurmountable challenges to leave a record of their times, in the process weaving a story that echoes throughout other times and places.

Dr. Daniel Jackson (1964-2002, 2004-2060) was such an observer. Now widely accepted as the human who "opened" the first Earth Stargate – though a small but persistent community insists that cultural mores of the times gave credit to Dr. Jackson for accomplishments that should be attributed to Dr. Samantha Carter and/or Dr. Catherine Langford -- Dr. Jackson was an archeologist, anthropologist, linguist, author, and explorer. He was also, apparently, a indefatigable diarist, producing a voluminous series of hand-written journals during his life. In addition, Jackson was a prolific letter-writer, penning hand-written missives to academic publications, politicians, professional associates, co-workers, and friends long after the advent of widespread and secure digital communications.

These writing have been ably collected and edited by Dr. Adam Pierson, best known for "Inscribed,"(2110), his glowingly reviewed examination of Egyptian culture during the reign of the Pharaohs, and "With a Little Help From Their Friends," last year's account of the stagehands at the 20th century Woodstock music festival. Dr. Pierson was tireless in tracking down caches of Dr. Jackson’s writings, some of which had been secreted away by executors of Dr. Jackson’s estate and then passed down through the generations. Persistent in wresting permissions from current holders of these letters and journals, Dr. Pierson has managed to compile a truly remarkable collection. He has also managed to refrain from adding his own interpretation to the text, letting Dr. Jackson’s words speak — or babble, rant, or seduce — for themselves.

While much is known today about the original Stargate program and those involved with it, some possibly key events and people are still shrouded in mystery. Documentaries and books have illuminated such names as Carter, Fraiser, Maybourne, Woolsey, and Weir, but Daniel Jackson was famously private, and his privacy — like that of his cohorts Jonathan "Jack" O’Neill and Rodney McKay — was protected not only by his coworkers, but by his legatees, and by the generations that followed. Attacks on Cheyenne Mountain during the Great Galactic War (2028-2033, Terran Std.) further clouded the public’s understanding of Dr. Jackson, destroying as they did virtually all procedural, medical, and administrative records at the SGC base. It’s a treat, then, to see the advent of the program, and its first few years, through Daniel Jackson’s intelligent and always passionate eyes. From dry asides in his journal, such as:

"…The Gate, when activated, appears as a vortex of water, which bursts out with a lethal force before settling into a somewhat calmer surface. Jack describes it as a giant exploding toilet."

to meticulous measurements of artifacts found on other worlds, to fascinated speculation about alien cultures, Dr. Jackson’s writings reveal him to be a complicated man with an insatiable curiosity and an impulsive -- and somewhat melodramatic --personality. Early letters to Dr. Catherine Langford, a noted archeologist and
perhaps a mentor to Dr. Jackson, are surprisingly metaphorical, and often poetic. In one, he writes:

"…To have a universe of knowledge at your fingertips and to sacrifice it for love seems, in retrospect, the wisest course. You were pulled by a forcefield, a complicated mesh of belief and memory; I was motivated by a sorry mix of tissues and the need to understand — well, everything."

Not the standard language of a scientist, even a social scientist, to a colleague! Interestingly, this is also not Dr. Jackson’s only mention of tissue or tissues; he uses the imagery of "a box of Kleenex" over and over again. The meaning of this symbol is tantalizingly unclear, though many academics have concluded that Jackson’s research was underwritten by a major 20th century corporation, perhaps Kimberly-Clark or Proctor&Gamble.

Contemporary with these early letters is another series of letters, never sent, to a person identified only as "Sha’re." While Dr. Jackson addresses Sha’re in his journals as well, these letters — which range over the course of several years — offer another fascinating glimpse of Jackson the man. Jackson’s relationship to Sha’re is never made clear, and Dr. Pierson declines to cast a vote as to whether Sha’re is a figment of Dr. Jackson’s imagination, an aspect of his own personality, or an unrequited love from one of his graduate student "digs" in Egypt. Excerpts from his letters, ordered chronologically, might support any interpretation. They, too, make heavy use of metaphorical language:

"…you were ripped from your home, from your self, because of me. But dwelling on that isn’t useful; you’d be the first to tell me that, I know. If I’m going to help you, I have to focus on what is useful, and not what you feel, or if you remember. Is it selfish to hope you don’t feel, and don’t remember? Or is it selfish to hope that you do?"

"I don’t know if you’ll ever see these letters. It’s strange to think you once wouldn’t have recognized what they are. I taught you to read, and you taught me to see. I thought I understood the risk, but I was wrong."

"Now that you’re truly gone…no, that’s not right. You’re a part of me, and you were right from the beginning. That should be comforting, but I think I’m going to be haunted, forever, by your ghost, or maybe just by the ghost of what might have been for you, and for me, if instead of asking why I’d just said no."

Other letters hint at a love affair which put Jackson in conflict with the Stargate program. These letters — also, apparently, unsent — were addressed simply to "Oma." Surviving records from other SGC members, and Jackson’s own journals, indicate that at one point Jackson actually left the SGC because of, or perhaps at the behest of, Oma. He returned after a year, and his writings from this time speak of heartbreak and confusion. He repeatedly describes himself as "cast out," and his journals contain several versions of the following sentiment, with the now familiar poetic, metaphorical prose:

"I can’t remember who I was before, what I enjoyed, what I did, how I lived. I’m struggling to reconcile what I know — Jack’s moods, how to translate a fragment of text, what to avoid in the commissary — with the person everyone here remembers and expects me to be. Being a shepherd would be easier, though I don’t think anyone here would allow that. And it seems there is a job to do here, an important one, so I’ll lace up my boots (assuming I can remember where to find them) and try to carry on.

But Jackson’s life was not all angst, poetry, and drama. A series of rather prosaic letters written to his friend and commanding officer, Colonel (as he was then) Jonathan "Jack" O’Neill, detail the ongoing efforts to fix a computer software glitch during a three-month period while O’Neill was away from the SGC. Each letter ends with a somewhat detailed, if muddled, account of a current sports event, with particular emphasis on what appears to be Dr. Jackson’s abiding interest, NHL (Terran-U.S.) ice hockey. One of Dr. Pierson’s rare asides occurs here, noting that these well-worn letters were accompanied by a series of unsent letters from Col. O’Neill to Dr. Jackson, covering roughly the year Jackson left the SGC. By the terms of Col. O’Neill’s will, these letters are still embargoed.

In addition to sports, Jackson shared another common male passion of the era. Running notes on the SGC’s daily routines include many comments like the following:

"After the fire was contained, Sgt. Siler showed up…with the usual wrench, and a new assistant."

"Sam couldn’t get the machine to reboot, but Siler’s wrench saved the day."

"Siler led the crew doing routine maintenance in my lab this morning, and I have to concede that Sam and Jack are right about the man and his wrench."

Clearly, Jackson had a practical side, or a fascination with basic tools.

It’s often noted that individual caught up in historic events may be unaware of the magnitude of the changes around them, or of their own roles in these changes. Primary sources often reveal a subject’s focus on mundane matters — a child’s cold, the need for new boots — while events explode around them. Jackson’s journals are no exception, often delving into personal rather than global or galactic issues. At times he seems unaware of world events. During the summer of 2000, for instance, during a heated political campaign for President of the United States, Jackson described only one seemingly political act, and briefly at that:

"The four of us wore the armbands Anise gave us to McNally’s. It was an interesting evening. We won’t be going back. It’s a shame; their steaks are really good."

Jackson can also seem oblivious to the implications of SGC "missions." Several of his journal entries throw light on a contentious aspect of the SGC program: its effect on inhabitants of other planets. He appears to be unconcerned, however, in this description of a first-contact situation off-world:

I don’t do a very good impression of a drone. Of course, it’s difficult to communicate at the best of time; without a shared vocabulary, story, or belief system, it may be impossible. Judging from my relationship with Jack, it may be impossible even if you do share all those things. We spent the morning arguing like children, but unfortunately he has no understanding of the "fairy tales" that might explain that, or of the "rumors and lies" that would help us better understand this place.

To be fair, Jackson was among the first off-world explorers, and it’s easy to see how the excitement of that early experience might have outweighed moral considerations. And certainly, the fact that Jackson was one of the negotiators and signatories of the Galactic Accords of 2039 speaks to a later awakening of high-level diplomatic skill and cultural understanding.

What, then, can we make of the personal papers of this brilliant, enigmatic figure? Did his foibles and talents shape his times, or was he just one of many shaped by events beyond his control? Galactic historians — and those merely interested in SGC history — will find much to explore in Dr. Pierson’s fascinating new book, and in the subsequent volumes that are no doubt to come.

History knows Dr. Daniel Jackson for his role in the early days of the SGC. It may well be, however, that Dr. Jackson's true legacy is in these pages, contributing as they do to our ongoing debate about the nature of truth, of point of view, of history itself. Dr. Jackson traveled the stars to better understand the universe. It seems that, in the course, he discovered just how difficult it is to understand oneself. History, even in the age of intergalactic travel, appears to return to one truth: that the most foreign country, in the end, is within.

(End of article)

A/N: Ben, as you no doubt guessed at this point, some of Dr. Jackson’s letters and journals were in my family’s keeping, passed down from my great-great-great-grandmother, Janet Fraiser. (Side note: You once asked me if all my relatives are named Janet or Cassandra. No, some are named Samantha. Also, before you ask, I was told that, despite the colorful stories otherwise, my great-great grandmother Cassie Fraiser was born in Canada.)

Daniel Jackson’s letters and journals were written in a derivation of Ancient Egyptian which no one was ever able to identify, much less translate. My family allowed Dr. Pierson access to the papers in part because he was able to translate them. I trust his translation; the Dean of Terran Ancient Cultures and Antiquities at the University of Chicago says Pierson’s skills are extraordinary. And as I mentioned, Pierson was very persuasive.

As you might imagine, I called on some family stories in writing this article. I’d rather not disclose my relationship to Janet Fraiser — you know what the press is like. Let me know if that’s a problem for you and the Journal.

END

Tallulah’s Notes:

The format of this was influenced by the London Review of Books, though the LRB's a lot more interesting (and better researched.) The tone, on the other hand, was influenced by my constant sense of "No, wait, that's not what it was like…" while reading obits of Glenn Frey and David Bowie. If you feel this "book review" was misguided or factually wrong in places, there's a reason or that. *g* (For the record, I think Daniel's sane, and pretty matter-of-fact, all things considered.)

"On a kind of a telephone line through time" is a line from The Indigo Girls' "Virginia Woolf," which is about reading a diary from an earlier era and discovering a kindred spirit.

Not that you need to know this, but Dr. Adam Pierson is 5,000 years old; he’s the oldest living Immortal in the "Highlander" TV series. He is, as you might imagine, a scholar of ancient languages and civilizations. (He was also a stagehand at Woodstock.) I always imagined he'd find a way to get a job with the SGC.

SG-1 eps referenced: "One False Step" ("rumors, lies and fairytales"), "Upgrades" (Anise's armbands), "A Hundred Days" (Jack stuck on Edora), and "Fallen"/"Homecoming," plus everything to do with Sha're.

Janet S. Rehs-Fargler is named for Janet and Sam. "Rehs" is a Rasa family joke. "Fargler" is for Vicki and Erin, who are fond of Adam Pierson. *g*

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I is for Imperfect and Incomplete Translation
by [profile] antonomasia09





Hey, Daniel,

Bet you never expected this, right? Ancient Egypt is both better and worse than we dreamed. There isn’t time to go into detail, though. You need to know what to do to fix the future, since we screwed it up badly.

In the original timeline, the Ancient Egyptians staged an uprising in 2995 BC against the goa’uld Ra. But when we traveled back in time, we changed history. Ra was able to escape in his great flying ship and take the Stargate with him.

So this is where you come in. You should find our puddle jumper in the same area as the video camera. It has the time machine in it. I have no idea what your world might be like without the SGC, but I have to assume that you won’t have made contact with any of our alien allies, so the first thing you should do is get Teal’c.

There’s another Stargate on Earth, located in the land of the cold to the South. You can take our ship through it and pick Teal’c up, then go back in time to fix the past. The address for Teal’c’s planet, Chulak, is:

Good luck. The whole universe is counting on you, so no pressure, right?
-Daniel

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J is for Journal
by [personal profile] sg_wonderland

The Tau’ri have many strange habits. This, I should have realized from my first encounters with them, as they brought a woman into battle. I at first took her for a concubine but O’Neill and Daniel Jackson both spoke to her, looking directly in her unveiled face, without benefit of the protection of either husband or male relative. At least, she had shame enough to cover her head, although, to be precisely honest, O’Neill and Daniel Jackson do so also, even though both have taken a First Wife.

Then, I believed her to be a slave guard, her life belonging to Daniel Jackson, for it was immediately apparent that he was not battle trained. He speaks before being spoken to, does not solicit O’Neill’s permission and readily divulges information best kept secret. He is either a foolish man or a brave one. Possibly both.

However, when Captain Carter asked me to relinquish my weapon upon reaching their world, I did so. Their weapons were strange to me but I found myself at a disadvantage. I gave her my weapon but kept silent so that I may observe.

*

I labor to understand the inclusion of Daniel Jackson and Captain Carter on O’Neill’s team. Daniel Jackson’s strengths would be better utilized by his remaining within the safe confines of the base; I have encountered no other Tau’ri with his capacity to learn and understand about unknown enemies.

Captain Carter remains even more of an enigma. Through conversation with her and Daniel Jackson, I have learned that she is unmarried, yet is allowed to own property and reside in such property without the required protection. And has no restrictions placed upon how she may purchase necessities for this home. Although I am loath to query, it becomes apparent that this is not an anomaly on this world. The healer, Dr. Fraiser, appears to be allowed the same latitudes.

I have never encountered a situation where mere women are allowed to place themselves in such vulnerable situations. And yet, neither seems to seek a mate within this base, which would seem to offer an unlimited selection of potential husbands.

Perhaps this lack of male companionship can be attributed to the costumes both women choose. Captain Carter covers her body with the same apparel that the men wear while Dr. Fraiser’s attire cannot have been selected to elicit interest.

Although apparently healthy, neither woman has become either a Second Wife nor have borne children from a husband. I do not understand fathers who allow their daughters to squander their child-bearing years.

When Captain Carter and I are more acquainted, perhaps I will query if she wishes me to assist her in obtaining a husband.

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K is for Kryptonite
by [personal profile] gategremlyn

“On my first day at Stargate Command, Landry asked me, 'What's your kryptonite?' It's bugged me ever since.” Cam felt better having shared this piece of vital information with his team. After six hours in a dungeon, they were cold, tired, and sore. The conversation had also become a little maudlin as rescue seemed further and further away.

“Really? Landry said that?” Jackson asked. “Why are you worried about it now?”

“Because if I'm going to die, I'd like to know this about myself.” Cam shook the chains that held his arms to the wall. “What is my kryptonite?”

“Are we speaking of Superman from Earth mythology?” Teal'c asked.

“Well, it's not exactly a mythology, Teal'c,” Jackson said. “The term mythology is usually reserved for practices and writings that reflect the religious beliefs of people in a particular time and place. Superman is a character from a comic book.”

“There are books?” Vala asked. “I thought Superman was just a movie.”

“Not books, Vala, comic books—books with pictures as well as words,” Daniel said. “It’s a very old Earth art form, dating from the early twentieth century.

“Just a movie? Just a movie?” Cam interrupted. “One of the best movies ever made.”

“I've seen the movie. More than one, I think,” Vala said.

“I believe there are four with Christopher Reeve. However, those numbers do not reflect the many television adaptations through the years.”

“Obviously, I have some research to do on Superman when we get home,” Vala said.

“His history is an interesting one,” Teal'c added. “He has also died and come back from the dead.”

“So has Jackson, Teal'c. That's not really so surprising. And nobody's telling his story.”

“Yet,” Teal'c added after a pause.

In a loud voice, Jackson steered the conversation away from dead-again Daniel. “Superman's appeal is in his vulnerability to kryptonite. All heroes have something that makes them... fallible. That's what Landry meant, Mitchell.”

Cam sighed. “First: I'm not a hero. Second: I already know I'm fallible. Third: If I have a weakness, I'd like to know what it is. The air force doesn't cut me a pay check so that I can be...weak.” He rattled the chains to illustrate his point.

The room fell silent at that.

“Jack? Do you want to weigh in here?” Jackson directed his voice to the corner of the room where General Jack O'Neill, along on the mission at Cameron Mitchell's personal request, stood chained to the wall.

“Why?”

“Oh, I don't know. Because you're here, because you're the senior officer, because it would be nice to know you're awake over there and not unconscious.”

“Fine. We're not going to die.”

“I didn't mean about that,” Jackson said. “I mean about the whole Superman / kryptonite thing.”

“I'm with Teal'c. I like Christopher Reeve as Superman although I thought the fourth movie was weak.”

“Jack.”

“And I owned most of the comics when I was a kid. I think I might even have had a first edition that my grandpa gave me. Might be worth some money now... if I can find it.”

“Jack.”

“But the TV shows weren't my favorites—the whole Lois Lane and Clark Kent getting married thing didn't do it for me.”

Vala piped in, “Lois Lane and Clark Kent, married? Is this show still on television?”

Jackson was reduced to a sputter. “That's not what we were talking about.”

“Also,” O'Neill continued, “I don't think that Christopher Reeve's Superman was the original movie. Somebody made Superman movies during World War II. I'm pretty sure. Don't know if I've ever seen them, though.”

“I believe you are correct, O'Neill. I had forgotten those films.”

Thankfully, Sam's voice interrupted the chatter. “Everybody okay in there? I got the ransom. Finally.”

Cam sighed in relief. “Carter, what took you so long?”

~::~

“So, Carter, what did it cost to get us out?” O'Neill asked his former second-in-command.

They'd seen to the injured, paid the ransom, and were now on their way back to the Stargate with a delegation from the village and SG-3 as backup. Jackson had a badly sprained wrist, O'Neill a wrenched shoulder, Teal'c a cut on his thigh, and Vala a bump on her head, all minor injuries, thankfully. Cam himself didn't even have a bruise, something he felt sort of guilty about.

“Four goats, sir,” Sam said.

“Four goats?”

“Yes, sir. One for each prisoner.”

“Carter, there are five of us.”

“We got a deal, sir. They gave you to us for free because you're the--” She cleared her throat.

“I'm the what?”

“The oldest. They didn't want to be responsible for someone your age.”

“Did anyone ever tell you you're a barrel of laughs, Carter? How would you like to be busted back to lieutenant?”

“There are days it has its appeal, sir.” She tugged on the sling. “How's it feel?”

“Like I'm old and decrepit. It's fine. Go bug someone else.”

She smiled and moved to Daniel who was trying to talk with the village mayor at the same time a medic was trying to secure the bandage on his hand.

“So did you figure out your kryptonite yet, Mitchell?” O'Neill asked, falling into step with Cam.

“No, I didn't,” he said, trying not to let his frustration show, and then added a hasty, “Sir.”

“You sure?”

“Um... I can't say as I've been sure of anything since I joined SG-1. Do you know my kryptonite?”

“Oh, yeah. I know.” O'Neill adjusted the sling and winced.

They walked on in silence while Mitchell watched the Stargate's most famous leader walk beside him. “Are you going to tell me, sir?”

“Do you know I'm not even worth a goat?”

“Beg pardon?”

“Carter said they threw me in for free. She brought four goats, one for each of you.”

“I'm sure she was kidding, sir.”

“Yeah. Maybe. She's funny like that.”

Vala had taken over schmoozing the mayor while Daniel stepped back to talk to Teal'c.

“So give me the sit-rep, Mitchell. Tell me how we got into this mess.”

“Sir?”

“Lay it out for me. Retrace your steps, as it were.”

“You were there, sir.”

“Yep. Give it to me, Mitchell. We were in an Ancient ruin and....” He waved his free hand expansively.

“And Jackson muttered something in Ancient—which freaked out our village guide who took off running. Sam spewed some technobabble about how the ruins were aligned to catch the summer sun... like a Stonehenge clone or something. The next thing I know, we're surrounded by a whole bunch of bad-tempered guys with bows and arrows.”

“And?”

“And we ended up in a medieval dungeon.”

“You missed a step in there, son.”

“No, I didn't.”

“Yes, you did.”

“I think he's talking about me, Mitchell,” Jackson piped in. “He thinks--”

“Daniel, why don't you tell Vala about Smallville? I'm sure she'd love to hear about young Clark Kent.”

“How do you know about--” Jackson bit his tongue and glared. “Fine, I'll go talk to Vala.” He sped up until Vala captured his arm. Their voices wafted back to Cam.

“So, Daniel, tell me about this Smalltown program.”

“Smallville,” Teal'c said. “I am familiar with the show. It is now in its seventh or eighth year.”

O'Neill let them move ahead until their voices faded. “That's your kryptonite, Mitchell.”

“I've never even seen Smallville, sir.”

“Not that. Come on, Mitchell, you're a bright guy.”

Cam sighed. “Jackson stepped in front of me and waved his hands around, yelling 'Don't shoot,' and I didn't. By then it was too late. Sam got sent back to the 'gate for goats, and we ended up in manacles.”

“Yep.”

“You're saying I lost command of my unit.”

“You never had command of it, Mitchell, and if you think you did, you're a fool.”

~::~

They went through the motions: shower, debrief, and downtime. Sam took a day to ride her motorcycle, Teal'c and Vala took a day to buy all the available seasons of Smallville. O'Neill, Cam heard, was staying an extra day with Jackson. Cam took a day to... brood. When he was done brooding and opened his email, the first message he saw was from General O'Neill. He swore under his breath.

“Mitchell,” it said, “you found your kryptonite—it's your team. So here's my assessment:

“Maldoran: She's impulsive and asks too many questions, but she'll get over it.

“Teal'c: He's a good egg, unless you run in to a Goa'uld he has a problem with, and then all bets are off.

“Daniel: Yeah, I've wanted to put him in a box a couple of times myself (you know, the whole kryptonite in a lead-lined box thing), but he has kind of a phobia about the sarcophagus so I don't say that very often. Whatever he tells you, just go with it; he's usually right about stuff. And damned irritating when he is.

“Carter: Once I can remember to do the paperwork, I'm busting her down to lieutenant and then taking her out to a nice Greek restaurant for goat.

“Oh, and the next time you need someone to activate nonexistent Ancient technology, call Sheppard.

“You're gonna be fine, Mitchell.

“I have to go help Daniel make coffee before he has a one-handed meltdown.”

The email was signed J.O.

“P.S. Print the attachment and stick it in your pack.”

Cam then noticed that the email had been carbon copied to everyone on the team—and that it had an attachment. He hit print and went to make his own cup of coffee.

When he got back, he had five new messages.

From Vala: “What do you mean I ask too many questions? How am I supposed to learn about your planet if I don't ask questions?”

From Teal'c: “I am not an egg. Even without my symbiote, I am at a strong warrior. Do you wish to engage in another boxing match, O'Neill?”

From Sam: “There's a new Greek place downtown. How about we make it a team night and do dinner before you go back to Washington? I've never had goat.”

From Vala: “Teal'c and I are watching Smallville. Can we do takeout? Did I get the term right, Muscles?”

From Jackson: “Stick me in a box? I'd like to see you try it, Jack. You and which goat? Vala, you're watching Smallville on DVD. You can turn it off and join us for dinner.”

Cam heard another ping as he picked up the piece of paper from the printer. It was a new message from O'Neill: “See, Mitchell, what did I tell ya? They're all a pain in the ass. Carter, you're buying.”

From Vala: “Am I going to like Greek food?”

From Sam: “I don't think I can afford it on a lieutenant's salary. You're buying, sir.”

From Jackson: “I'll help you order. You're going to love Greek food—and Jack’s buying....”

O'Neill's attachment read like this: KRYPTONITE—WHAT ALL HEROES NEED TO BE HUMAN.

Before he hit “reply all,” Cam folded up the paper and stuck it in his wallet. He'd print another one at work to put in his pack.

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L is for Lost Letters
by [personal profile] fignewton

Khey'ama, my fierce and proud wife,

I know not if you will ever see this. I shall beg our master for the last boon of allowing this final message to reach your hands. It would comfort me to know that you received this assurance of my devotion, both to Cronus the Great and to you and our two children. But Cronus the Great must and always does come first in my allegiance, and should he in his wisdom declare that this missive cannot be delivered, I can do no more than bow my head in abject submission.

I will not even hope that my devotion to my role as his First Prime, an honor that I sought for so long and carried with such pride, might grant me some favor. Cronus the Great will judge me fairly, I know.

I cannot reveal the secret of the failure that will result in my just execution for failing to achieve glory in the name of Cronus the Great. I will only say that on my last mission, I squandered a golden opportunity to erase a persistent thorn that has plagued Cronus the Great for these two generations of Jaffa lives.

It is a curious thing that honor in others can be so easily twisted to cause great damage. I am ashamed of my reluctant respect for one who fought with such bravery for such misguided purpose. Yet I cannot help but find solace in knowing that the enemy who defeated me was a warrior of great strength. If only the glory of Cronus the Great had not been diminished with my loss! But there, that is foolishness. The past cannot be changed, and I have no future. I can only pray that with your wisdom and courage to guide him, our son Ari'ac will restore my lost honor and win back glory for our people and our master.

Whatever strength Cronus the Great does not claim is yours, Khey'ama, to share with Ari'ac and Kho'rauc.

Fy'rac

*

be sure. Yesterday, I watched Teal'c locked in combat with Cronus' First Prime. I think, Sha're, that it was hard to tell which battle was worse. There was their physical fight, a hand-to-hand whirl of such deadly intent that it's amazing they both survived. And then there was their verbal struggle. I can still hear their shouts ringing in my mind, with Teal'c trying to convince Fy'rac to choose freedom and Fy'rac screaming that Teal'c was a shol'va twice over.

I will make sure you read all these journals in order, Sha're, so that you will understand all of Teal'c's history with Cronus and the death of his father. It makes sense that the Jaffa would see Teal'c as a double shol'va - first for leaving Cronus' territory after his father's murder, and then for turning against Apophis when he rescued us. I wonder how much that history prompted Teal'c to turn against Apophis in the first place? He'd already seen his father's loyalty betrayed by a Go'auld before.

But I'm rambling again, aren't I? I can see your eyes crinkle at me, teasing me about letting my thoughts wander the way I used to let the mastadges wander off when I was supposed to be watching them. I can't

I'll get you back, Sha're. I know you're out there, still so strong. You kept Amaunet silent at that horribly crucial moment and you'll keep fighting her until we get the chance to get you back.

I wish I could

I was writing about Teal'c, and his struggle with Fy'rac. I suppose it makes sense that so many of the different First Primes recognize each other - there must be times when the Goa'uld have to meet. When we walked out of the Stargate and nearly tripped over Cronus' Jaffa, it looked like it would be a regular firefight (and oh, Sha're, when did firefights become regular to me? We'll go home when this is all over and until Fy'rac actually got a good look at Teal'c's face. He went kind of crazy after that, screaming that he was going to destroy the shol'va. At first I thought he knew Teal'c because he's infamous by now - the shol'va First Prime who joined the Tau'ri and wears the SGC uniform - but Teal'c called Fy'rac by name, and he tried to talk him down before he had to defend himself against getting killed outright.

Once they were fighting so closely, we couldn't risk shooting at Fy'rac because we might have shot Teal'c instead. We managed to take down the rest of the patrol, but all we could do after that was watch. And Teal'c - he's pretty amazing, isn't he? Even while he was fighting for his life, he still had breath enough to spare to shout at Fy'rac, telling him how Cronus had been so badly wounded on Earth and that the Goa'uld aren't gods, that the Jaffa can be free.

It was a bit of stalemate, at the end. Another patrol came running, Teal'c managed to throw Fy'rac off long enough to get him zatted, and we scrambled back through the Stargate without much dignity but at least with our skins mostly still intact. Teal'c had plenty of bruises and scrapes, but his symbiote took care of that pretty quickly. But he was so quiet, afterward. He would only say that he thought he could have convinced Fy'rac if he'd just had a little more time.

I saw Jack's expression. I know he doesn't believe it, but I do. I have to believe it, Sha're, because if there's hope for the Jaffa, then there's hope for you, too. They can be reached, just as you can. I can't believe our dreams are impossible. It's why so many of my journal entries are letters to you, in the hope that someday you'll read through them, with your thirst to know, and find out how much we

I'm sorry. General Hammond just called. Sounds like something is happening on Abydos. I'll finish this later when

*

SECURITY REPORT FORM CZ3-FF11

DATE: 10-11-1999

cc: maintenance, medical

INCIDENT DETAILS: Fire alarm on Level 18, Room 14B. Security arrived 25 seconds after alarm sounded. Medical arrived 1 minute, 12 seconds after alarm sounded.

Source of alarm traced to small, contained fire in wastebasket. Occupant of room unharmed: Dr. Daniel Jackson, civilian doctor of archeology, attached to SG-1. (see attached personnel file C0003-ALD)

Jackson reminded of regulations re uncontrolled fires within complex. No response or explanation offered.

Jackson questioned re indentification of destroyed documents. Jackson identified documents as personal papers. Jackson reminded that all paperwork and documentation within complex may not be destroyed without prior authorization from superior officer. Jackson emphasized his status as civilian. Further remarks by Jackson deemed unnecessary to report verbatim.

Superior officer arrived, identified as Colonel Jonathan O'Neill, CO of SG-1. O'Neill escorted Jackson to infirmary for follow-up medical consulation. (see attached medical report MM12-E9VZ10 dated 10-08-1999)

Maintenance attempted restoration of destroyed documentation. (see attached report form M33-PY1L) Destroyed documentation likely to be personal journals. Recommendation to ascertain possible loss of important data regarding recent missions appended in attached form CZ3-FF1541.

Major Janet Frasier, CMO, submitted attached report form MM12-E7Z44, stating that burning of personal journals was form of grief therapy that should be retroactively approved. See attached form SZ3-441IP for pending approval.

*

Scribed by Kho'tak, Keeper of Records for Cronus the Great

On this twelfth day of the festival of Kronia, disgraced former First Prime Fy'rac was excecuted for his crime in failing to achieve glory in battle in the name of Cronus the Great. In his great mercy, Cronus the Great honored Fy'rac with death by his own mighty hand.

All possessions of the excecuted were destroyed, including weapons, clothing, and personal items, to avoid risk contamination to others by exposure to such abject failure. Let all acknowledge the awesome charge to serve Cronus the Great and achieve victory in his great name.

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M is for Message in a Bottle
by [personal profile] traycer

It sucks getting old. Jack O'Neill sat on Pelop's throne in the temple and ruminated on his life, which by his reckoning was currently forty years old going on ninety. May even be a hundred. Who could tell?

He was on a fast track toward death, and there seemed to be nothing anyone could do about it. Even with Carter and Doc Fraiser working on a cure, he knew there was probably no way out. He straightened out his legs to work out some of the achy kinks in his joints, and then grimaced as pain raced up from his kneecaps.

God, it really sucks to be old.

He let out a deep sigh, then turned his attention to the notebook he had in his hands. He was dying, and sitting here alone, trying to make sense of it all, yet his mind had drifted down a familiar path, one that always took him to Sara when the pain was too much to bear, or when he needed to focus on something other than what fate put in front of him. His ex-wife had always been his lifeline, pulling at him to make it home even when the odds were against that very thing. But he focused on her memory whenever he needed to fight for survival in whatever predicament he ended up in and this time was no different.

He stared out at the room in general for a moment, trying to decide what to write, for this was his answer to this particular predicament. A letter, instead of just relying on memories and hallucinations, although it may come to that if old age had its way. He remembered his grandfather before he passed on to the great fishing pond in the sky. The old man couldn't remember anything about his children or grandchildren, but he talked constantly to the memory of his own wife. For hours. Jack had to smile at that memory. Then frowned as the thought came to him that he might be doing the same thing in a few more days. And all because of a piece of cake.

No need to dwell on mistakes that put him in this position. He sent a glower toward the group of young people who were having a discussion about what to do with the stranger. Kynthia turned toward him at that moment, and Jack's mood lifted slightly. It wasn't entirely her fault, he told himself for what seemed like the hundredth time. She didn't know this would happen.

He gave her a small smile, then turned back to the notebook, took the pen and wrote, Dear Sara. It was a start anyway. He tried to think of what else to put on the paper, but the bitterness he felt toward this whole mess made it hard to concentrate. His whole life, what little was left of it, was in ruins. He stared at the words, wondering why he had even bothered with a letter. It's not like Sara could do anything. He was still a dead man as far as he knew. This letter was like a message in a bottle. He could wax poetically about the meaning of life and it would still probably end up in a file folder marked Top Security and buried deep within the SGC.

Silence fell over the room and Jack looked up to find that he was alone again, the others having left. He was glad for this. Nothing like peace and quiet to liven up a pity party. He looked down at the words once again, then closed the notebook and tossed it and the pen on the floor. Maybe memories were the better route to go after all. He couldn't concentrate on writing a letter anyway.

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N is for Not Your Grandfather's Paradox
by [personal profile] jedibuttercup

Lieutenant Colonel Cameron Mitchell

[written on the outside of an envelope, yellowed with age. inside, handwritten text covers several folded pages, authentically stiff and covered in faded ink:]

Hey, me. No, you're not imagining things. This really is your handwriting, and the paper it's written on really is older than you are. Assuming I got the timing right-- you should be reading this in August, 2008.

No, I didn't get a letter like this. This isn't that kind of paradox. Too bad, 'cause that would make this a whole lot easier. So how can I prove it to you? How about, in the words of someone we both know who's been around this block before:

"My name is Lieutenant Colonel Cameron Mitchell. I'm part of a team called SG-1, and I traveled back in time 79 years."

I know, I know, that's a drop in the bucket compared to five thousand... and unfortunately, there's no ZPM enclosed this time. I kind of wish there was, 'cause we always seem to be short of those things. But I'm just gonna assume you get the reference, and that it serves as my bonafides, because if I've somehow managed to change the timeline enough that you didn't end up in Colorado Springs, the rest of this letter isn't going to make much sense to you.

If that's the case-- sorry to bother you. Burn this letter, and raise a glass to Samantha Carter, Daniel Jackson, Vala Mal Doran, and Teal'c sometime.

...Unless you're curious. And you're me, so I'm pretty sure you'll wonder what you're missing as much as I would. Look up a dig at a tomb near Giza; yes, the archaeological kind. There should have been a team from the University of Chicago over there back in '05. If there wasn't an SGC to take charge of what they found there, the scientists probably thought they were the victims of some weird prank, so you should be able to figure out which one I mean. There'll be a dusty, dead old video camera in a box somewhere in their archives, along with a glowy thing that looks a little like a power-up module from a videogame. (Which is not a bad analogy, now that I think about it.) That should give you enough to start with.

Anyway, if all that did make sense to you, there's a few things you should know.

First of all, that thing Ba'al was talking about when he said "You've all made a terrible mistake?"

He wasn't lying. He really wasn't the last of them; the original really did give himself the ability to take out his tracking device. He was still out there.

And that brings me to the second thing. Ba'al had a failsafe.

Which was, you guessed it, a time travel device. He used it to go back to Earth in 1939 and completely rewrite galactic history. You know Ba'al; so whatever you're imaging that means, you're not far off. Carter, Jackson and I happened to be mid-wormhole when it happened, and we ended up on the alternate Earth his actions created-- in 2008. To make a long story short, things went wrong for Ba'al again about a year after we arrived, through no fault of ours; his new First Prime tried to activate the failsafe again; and I ended up stranded alone on Earth in 1929.

Well-- not exactly alone. That picture in your locker? Yeah, I met him. Turns out the Achilles was the ship transporting the 'gate across the ocean to keep it away from the Nazis. Small world, huh?

I've been rewriting this letter every five years or so, but as of this writing, you haven't been born yet. I've been living as low-impact a life as possible, trying to avoid screwing things up again, except one trip in 1939 to where I knew Ba'al was going to show up. So you don't have to worry about Mr. Wannabe Supreme System Lord; between me and Granddad's crew, we settled his hash proper.

What you do need to worry about, the reason I wrote this letter in the first place, is the failsafe. I don't know how he came up with it, or why he waited 'til the last possible moment to use it, but odds are the thing's still out there just as Ba'al left it. And I don't think it'll thrill you any more than it does me to imagine someone else stumbling across it when SG-1 might not be in a position to fix things.

I've written the symbols for the location below. It'll look like a three-pronged platform, one for the gate, one for a set of rings, and one for the controls, around a central tower that powers the machine. It's got something to do with solar flares-- Carter'll be able to figure it out. She did before.

Take along a planet buster, set the timer, and get the hell out-- and don't tell anyone but the general before you go. No one needs that kind of power. It's bad enough that we kept the Ark.

(No, not that Ark, if you're still confused. The other one. Though now that I think on it, that's not a bad analogy, either. And now that I've creeped myself out...)

[above the signature, six symbols resemble stylized constellations]

Cameron [illegible scribble]
(aka, you. I'm counting on you, kid.)

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O is for Olfactory
by [personal profile] goddess47

TO:All SGC Personnel
FROM: General George Hammond
RE:Personal Hygiene Products


It has come to my attention the need to mandate that all personal hygiene products used by SGC personnel be odor-free, effective immediately. This is a mandate for all personnel who will be traveling off-world, but also for Earth-based staff, to eliminate transfer of scents between staff or on to equipment used off-world.

In addition, this includes prohibiting the use of perfumes, colognes and other scented personal products.

A list of scent-free products will be provided through the Quartermaster's department.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


"Well, a little late, but a good idea," Daniel Jackson pointed to the email message on his laptop.

"For crying out loud, Daniel," Jack O'Neill replied, rolling his eyes. "Of everyone who goes through the Gate, I would have thought you would be the one person who would have thought of this sort of thing first."

Daniel flushed. "I know, I know," he groaned. "But it's really the first time it's come up. I guess I was so focused on verbal languages -- and the strange energy reading from the MALP -- that I got sloppy."

Jack huffed from the semi-comfortable chair next to Daniel's infirmary bed. "How long you going to be here?"

"Lam said she'd probably be able to let me go tomorrow morning, once I get through some basic PT," Daniel admitted. All of SG1 were reasonably good on crutches, having spent at least some time laid up with twisted ankles or broken bones. But Lam always made them go through a check before she'd let them out of the infirmary. Jack knew they had to set a semi-decent example of doing what the docs asked, especially in front of any newbies. "But we'll be on down time for about a month while my busted ankle heals up."

Jack waved off Daniel's look of worry. "Carter has some doohickey from that world that she's going to spend some time with," Jack admitted. "And Teal'c will be spending time with the new recruits, doing some... training." He gave a grin. Then frowned. "Damn. Now I have to do all that paperwork Hammond wants."

Daniel gave a small shrug of compassion. "Make sure Teal'c doesn't break anyone," Daniel grinned.

"Hammond's already had that talk with him," Jack replied. "But, well, you know how it is."

"There always is the unexpected," Daniel admitted with a wry grin.

"And who would have thought that Aqua Velva would be a declaration of hostilities?" Jack asked.

"Or that the natives of that planet have a better sense of smell than a blood-hound?" Daniel answered.

Jack nodded at the laptop. "Find that list from the Quartermaster," Jack directed. "I suspect I need to do some shopping."

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P is for Post-It Notes
Your Best Friend is Jack
by [personal profile] carlyn7865

“Thanks, Jim.”

There’s nothing malicious in the delivery, and I’m sure Daniel has no idea how devastating his words are, how they shred my peace of mind like a wolverine on a tear.

I feel the smart ass smirk drop from my face. Strangely, Carter’s picked it up, slapping it on as an additional means to mock me. Nice, Sam. Wonder if you’d find the gaffe so amusing if it was your best friend – a man who knew me better than my wife, for crying out loud – who forgot your name.

It’s enough to bring out the snark in even the most patient, understanding man, and no one has ever accused me of being either. Okay, threatening bodily harm for his lack of knowledge might have been over the line, but Daniel used to brush that kind of stuff off all the time. Now he just looks at me like I’m the hunter and he’s the rabbit.

Carter and Jonas drone on, but I’ve lost track of what they’re talking about, focused as I am on Daniel’s too timid reaction. I have to admit I was heartened when he showed up asking to take part in the briefing, even declaring he felt like he belonged here. The wary and confused glances he’s shooting around the table are telling a different story; he still has no idea – no memory – of what it is we really do.

As if it’s the starting pistol at a marathon, Hammond’s “Dismissed,” has us all surging from the table. Daniel is up like a shot and across the room to intercept Jonas, who had promised to supply Daniel with copies of relevant mission reports. If I was the cynical type, I’d think Daniel wasn’t so much eager to talk to his fellow historian as he was to get away from me.

Carter and Teal’c likewise stalk for the exit, headed off on some assigned task related to finding the Lost City. No one asked for my help, so I guess I’ll have to find some way to pass the time on my own. Never thought I’d say this, but thank God I have reports to review waiting in my office. I just hope there’s something interesting enough in that precariously stacked bunch of paper to distract me from my preoccupation.

Stopping for a cup of coffee along the way, I flip on the light, drop into my chair and grab the topmost report from my inbox. Last month’s base security report. A quick scan shows nothing out of the ordinary – no weirdo conspiracy theorists scaling the perimeter fence, no attempted alien incursions…no floppy-haired archaeologist, minus his security pass, detained on the main floor until I can get up there to verify his identity for the SFs. Bet Daniel was glad to see me that day.

Damn it. The idea was to NOT think about Daniel.

The next document is Reynold’s official report of the happenings on Vis Uban which instantly conjures an image of an uncharacteristically hostile-looking Daniel brushing aside Carter’s attempt to connect with him.

Growling in frustration, I rifle through my inbox. There’s got to be something here – there! The quarterly budget figures. Nothing makes me go brain dead quicker than a page full of numbers – except maybe one of Carter’s tech heavy reports. I gird myself with a slug of caffeine and a hearty sigh and flip open the folder. A figure larger than the amount I spent on my first house catches my eye.

We spent how much on paper? I know we have to provide copies of reports to all members of every SG team participating in a given briefing, but this looks more like we’ve shared that information with every resident of Colorado Springs. I thought we’d gotten a handle on this once Daniel– Crap.

I circle the number in red ink. I’ll have to check it against last month plus this time last year. Could be this is a seasonal thing, though I can’t for the life of me think of any occasion in the last seven years that warranted the mass murder of hundreds of innocent trees.

I snag my pad of Post-its and make a notation, sticking it to the budget report. Thank goodness for whoever invented these things. I’d never remember a thing if not for the ability to leave reminders for…

Wait a minute… No, it couldn’t be that easy…

Then again, all he needs is a mental nudge…

Fraiser thinks it’s better for Daniel to remember things on his own…

But it’s not Fraiser’s name he keeps forgetting…

‘Thanks, Jim.’

Like he’s addressing a stranger instead of his closest friend.

It’s Jack, remember? The guy who took you home your first night back on Earth, and gave you enough beer to turn the horror of your wife’s abduction by the Goa’uld into an alcohol induced trip down memory lane featuring all the best parts of your life with her on Abydos. Jack. The guy who held you tight, talked you through the soul-sucking effects of a sarcophagus addiction, reminded you why you had to keep fighting it. Jack. The guy who made it possible for you to become a glowy, ghost-like, other-worldly being, even though it was like ripping my own heart out, because you thought you’d be more content there.

I did that. Me. Jack. Your best friend.

Screw it. Fraiser’s not the boss of me. And, while Hammond backed her suggestion, no one’s made it an order, not even after Teal’c admitted to helping Daniel recall his battle with Anubis during their late night powwow.

Besides, what harm could it do? It’s not like I’m giving him his full biography – I mean, I can hardly record his entire life in Post-it notes. I’ll just leave a few hints, little dabs of memory. The important stuff.

I rip off the topmost sheet, think for just a second about the things he needs to know, and begin to scrawl:

YOUR BEST FRIEND IS JACK.

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Q is for Quitting
by [personal profile] izhilzha

These documents were written in a notebook and secreted behind a file cabinet in the home of the missing man. Dates are not reliable, since the only ones we have come from the documents themselves, but the style of notebook supports a starting date around 2004. The only evidence remaining in our file are copies, which were accidentally left behind when the scene was taken over and the rest of the evidence confiscated by the Air Force, without explanation.

Hey, you,

How long did you think it would be before you heard from me? I bet you hoped you never would. I can't blame you for that, I guess; nothing like an exact copy of yourself to make those old knees feel stiffer, those eyes dimmer, to make your whole existence a feel little more meaningless.

You could've let me take some of my CDs, you know. Any idea what kind of looks I get as a 16-year-old, buying operas in the record store? Let's just say I've started doing it on the sly; it wasn't doing much for my reputation with the ladies or as a badass. But no, you got to keep it all; the most I got to keep was our first name.

If I sound grumpy, well, let's see, why would that be? You told me that if I ever needed anything, I should get in touch with you. That worked just peachy last week—not only is my clearance revoked, which I expected, but no one will take my calls or put me through to anyone in the command structure.

Now, for all I know, you're dead or lost on an uncharted planet. Don't sneer; we both know how hard it is to forget that itch. You're never gonna want to stop, even though everyone else will do their damnedest not to let you through the Gate.

But I think you're ignoring me on purpose. Maybe I should just show up at the mountain one of these days, see where that gets me. Annoying you for a day might be worth a night in the stockade.

Getting a chance to do it all over again isn't all it's cracked up to be. Not that we both didn't know that when I told you I was going to try.

Underneath this, in a forceful scrawl:

Dammit, I can't send this.

After this, there is what looks like a grocery list, followed by several pages torn out.

Teal'c, it's not like you're ever going to see this, so I'm just gonna ask.

What was it like? Leaving your whole life and trying to start a new one with people you didn't know on a totally new world? I guess it's not quite the same thing. After all, you weren't a copy. You could hold onto who you were, knowing that you had made that choice on purpose—maybe not knowing what it would be like, but trusting that it was the right thing to do.

I admire that. How steady you are in yourself. Great for a soldier; better for a man and a father.

What did you miss most? Drey'auc? Your son? The food? (I'm still not old enough to buy beer. It sucks like you would not believe.) Did you miss the power you had? You never showed me and Hammond anything but respect, so....

Hey, thanks for that, by the way.

What's that you say? I should try respecting the people in my new life?

Marcia the checkout clerk. Amalie the prettiest girl in class (and way too young for me, hormones be damned). My landlord, who I'm sure is a spy for you guys. The teachers, who all hate me (just like last time I was this age).

That's a tall order, T.

Maybe I'll try kel'no'reeming instead.

This letter is unsigned. The handwriting on the page that follows is sloppy, staggering. The paper is stained with liquid of some kind.

2007

Daniel,

I'm drunk right now. Yes, I had someone buy it for me; no, I don't give a crap. Guess I've lost my tolerance, or my body is smaller or something, because two beers never got me drunk in my life.

Miss me? I'm guessing not, since I haven't heard from any of you, including “the original,” since he dropped me off at the high school. Anyway, you've got him; I'd be too much of a good thing.

I miss you. I miss Sam. Don't tell her I said that. I mean, she's probably married some nice guy by now, or she's about to be promoted to lieutenant colonel (actually, probably both, and the ceremonies will be back to back). I miss Teal'c's stupid hat.

I'm angry you let me go like that. It's not like I decided to quit. Why should being a clone change anything? That's not fair, I know. It was weird talking to robot SG-1. It's got to be like that, except if you sliced me open, I'd just bleed blood instead of machine oil.

If you're ever in town, stop by the local diner. I'm a sous chef there now. Can you imagine? Getting bossed around by the most obnoxious, officious man I've met—which, after the SG program, is saying something.

This pretty 40-something waitress keeps wanting to take me under her wing. It'd be cute if she wasn't completely my type. She's just trying to be nice and I keep avoiding her like it's creepy.

You'll be glad to hear I'm doing well in school. Not like you did, I'm sure, but history and science are way more interesting this time around. I never realized how boring most people's lives are. I used to think I'd give anything for that; for a quiet retirement in the suburbs with Sara and Charlie. Maybe I'm not the kind of person who can do that well.

Don't think I'm doing this well.

I keep not sending letters to you guys. They'd just be confiscated. And they're not censored enough for the Post Office. Maybe I'll send this one, though. Just as a reminder.

Three years ago today.

Jack

More pages are torn out here. The last document is precisely written, although clearly a rough draft; words and phrases are crossed out and rewritten.

June 23, 2011

Major Carter,

That's the last rank I know you had, so please forgive me if you've become a brigadier general since the last time I saw you. I would expect nothing less.

I think I've found something that makes this little life worth living. I could write this to Daniel or Teal'c, but I sometimes imagine that you think of me and wish me well, and would like to know that I've found a purpose or some peace.

I don't have those yet. Maybe that's normal for a mid-50s general in the body of a 22-year-old.

But I think I've found family. Her name's Annette and she's 32; she loves classical music and was a military brat. I think she assumes my bad dreams (I kept those, yep) are PTSD from some horribly traumatic childhood; I'm not sure how long I can let her go on thinking that, but I'm not going to put my life on hold because I used to be someone else.

I'm still Jonathan O'Neill. That just means something different than it used to.

Let me know if you ever manage to convince the government to declassify the Stargate; it would make my life a lot easier in the future.

And if you ever need me—if the original bows out or something—give me a call. I might not come, but you know, I still miss it sometimes.

Have a great life; enjoy every moment you can. It's not easy, but it's the only way to go.

All the best,

Jack

Jonathan O'Neill has now been missing for roughly two months. No trace has been found and no sightings reported within the state. The possible victim's girlfriend maintains that he would not have left on his own, so the case will remain open for now. If the Air Force knows more, they're not telling us.

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R is for Research Notes
Getting to Know You
by [personal profile] sg1jb

2001-02-12 -- login 01:42 UTC-7:00

L26 Quarantine Room A-3
P Wallace MEH

01:02 : Device 1AC-0226 transported from L28 Gateroom to L26 Quarantine Room A-3
Planet of origin P4K-668 : SG-3

01:06 : Quarantine and observation protocols initiated. Baseline data collection initiated.

01:45 : Baseline data collected. Research Record created, shared server AP03. Data tables created and appended.

As per protocol, only change-state observations will be recorded during quarantine.

End notes -- logout 01:55 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-14 -- login 10:55 UTC-7:00

Engineering Physics Lab 19C
W Lee PhD

07:25 : Device 1AC-0226 quarantine period completed. No detectable changes in baseline data upon removal from quarantine: dimensions, mass and weight, density, temperature, magnetic properties, and external features all remained unchanged.

08:54 : X-ray, ultrasound and computerized tomography scanning completed. The external surface of the device is impervious to all three. MRI not performed as the external surface of the device is mildly magnetic. Radiological analyses appended. All baseline data remained unchanged post-scanning. Objective data tables (appended) updated.

09:10 : Device moved to Engineering Physics Lab 19C. Photographic documentation performed, with special attention to capturing high resolution images of all inscriptions and symbols. Image files appended, plus forwarded to Dr. Jackson.

Plan: Perform mass, acoustic, and full range electromagnetic spectrometry for ongoing monitoring and analysis. Consider introduction of low amplitude current depending upon spectrometry outcomes. Consult with Dr. Jackson on inscriptions.

End notes -- logout 11:05 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-16 -- login 21:40 UTC-7:00

Engineering Physics Lab 19C
W Lee PhD

09:20 : No changes in baseline data following 48 hours of mass, acoustic, microwave, ultraviolet, visible spectrum, and gamma spectrometry. Spectrometry readings non-contributory.

A thin-window Geiger-Mueller probe detected the presence of 4 MeV alpha radiation in the area of the seven indentations below what is believed to be a faceplate. All other surfaces (faceplate, frame, pedestal, and underside) were negative for alpha radiation.

This implies a difference, between the indentations and the reminder of the outer surface, in the nature of the material from which the device is composed. Data tables updated.

09:35 : Testing with low wattage, low amplitude current, initiated in cautiously stepped progression. Test leads were applied sequentially to the frame, pedestal, and faceplate areas as per appended diagrams. Applied currents' data added to data tables and detailed procedure notes (also appended).

15:10 : Testing was terminated and leads disconnected. No response to current application.

As I began to set up for conductivity testing of the panel containing the indentations, Dr. Jackson arrived at the lab (approximately 15:18) with a preliminary translation of the pedestal inscriptions.

Squatting on his lab bench, the bulky device vaguely resembled a hunkered-down, discontented troll – or at least it could, maybe, if Bill had actually ever seen a troll and if he was at all prone to anthropomorphism, which he wasn't.

"For you, though," he mumbled, attaching a lead to its surface, "I'm tempted to make an exception. I don't usually assign personality attributes to inanimate objects, but there's something about you that feels almost as intentionally, belligerently stubborn as Colo–"

"So, not making much progress, then?"

Startled, Bill turned to see Dr. Jackson casually leaning against the door frame. Self-consciousness warmed his cheeks as he realised he'd been overheard. Thank goodness the gripe been interrupted just when it had. Bill didn't know Dr. Jackson, had never directly interacted with him before, but all the same he was pretty sure that what he'd been about to say wouldn't have been well received.

"Uh, no. But, well ... well, some. It's not going too badly. Maybe a little bit ... but mostly, no," he tried to answer the question, stumbling over his own innate honesty as he tried to put a better foot forward. And didn't succeed.

Dr. Jackson straightened up and entered the lab. "What, no?" he asked, one hand moving forward to hover over the device. "Not going a little bit too badly, or not making any progress?"

"Both," Bill admitted. "I haven't made much progress, but then again nothing negative has happened either. Scans, spectrometry, low amplitude current application to the outer shell – nothing. Well, nothing except for some alpha radiation detected at the –"

"Radiation?" Dr. Jackson withdrew his hand from the vicinity of the device and stepped back.

"Oh, no, nothing to worry about. It's negligible, and alpha radiation is non-harmful anyway. It doesn't penetrate unbroken skin." Bill indicated the indents. "You might not want to lick the surface in this specific area, is all."

Dr. Jackson stepped forward again, albeit still a bit warily. "Right. No licking."

"Interestingly, it was only detected right there. The most plausible explanation is either a difference in composition of the exterior, or there's some sort of coating been applied to the surface just in that specific area." Warming to the subject, Bill enthused, "The outer shell material is impervious to scanning and is so hard that it's impossible to manually take a shaving; I'm thinking maybe oblique laser, but that's for down the road a bit. Oh, and so far I haven't detected any way to open the faceplate or access the interior." It was all really quite invigorating.

Jackson wiggled his fingers the device. "Go ahead," Bill told him. "It's all right to handle the frame and pedestal. Although, you should avoid touching that. Them." He pointed toward the seven oval indentations ranged in a shallow arc below the device's faceplate. "Avoid them."

"Because, radiation? But I thought you just said ...?"

"Oh, no, no. Not a concern at all. I've already touched one myself, with no adverse effect. It's just that I'd prefer not to introduce an extraneous variable right now – I'm just setting up to perform a conductivity test on the control interface." He indicated the lead positioned next to the leftmost indentation.

"Control interface?" Jackson's eyebrows rose in enquiry. "So you do know what this is, then."

"Well, no," Bill admitted, only slightly abashed at having presumed. "It just ... well, it just looks like a control assembly. I mean, the arrangement of the indentations, the fact that they're labelled, and their location below what's obviously a faceplate or access panel ..."

Dr. Jackson was nodding. "Right," he said, stroking one finger down the side of the device's frame. He leaned backward slightly to look down the length of its inscribed pedestal. "You know, intentional belligerence aside, Colonel O'Neill's not as bad as he seems. With more exposure, you'll get the hang of him."

Rattled at being caught out, Bill pounced on the nearest distraction and flapped a hand at the inscriptions. "Ahh, okay. So I assume you've received the referral – okay yes, well you're here, so of course you received it." More exposure? Oh dear. He hadn't considered that particular implication when he'd been provisionally assigned to Major Carter's lab. "Have you had a chance to study the images? The markings?"

Luckily, Bill's less than smooth avoidance tactic didn't seem to offend Dr. Jackson. He simply crouched down in front of the lab bench, agreeably returning to the original topic. "Yes. I haven't been able to decipher every letter and symbol – the language is a variant of Ancient I haven't encountered before and it's going to take time to get it all – but I can read a fair bit of it." A frown creased his face. "Syntactically, for the Ancients' language, it's mostly sentence fragments. Disconnected phrases."

He ran a finger along a line of markings, moving from bottom to top. "While I find it intriguing, unfortunately it's probably of limited usefulness to you. For example, this line, which is one of the few complete sentences on here, apparently refers to trees breaking in a wind and 'the first' being atop 'the second'. It's not unusual for Ancients' text to be inferential or metaphorical, or occasionally both at the same time. So even if the literal translation is correct – which it may not be – without adequate lexical and situational context, interpretation is actually pretty nebulous."

Bill leaned forward, peering at the inscription under Dr. Jackson's finger, and nodded as if he actually knew what the man was trying to explain. Because professional courtesy was important.

"Accurate translation and interpretation rely on identification of linguistic context," Dr. Jackson explained. "Case in point: taken in isolation, and considering the variety of possible declensions, I've decided this word 'primarius' is best translated as 'first'. But translating the word doesn't, in of itself, provide meaning."

Bill nodded, which seemed to encourage Dr. Jackson. "Okay, so look over here ... see this, in this line? That word appears to be derived from a Latin word which can translate as anything from understand to persist to occupy to, well, a lot of things. It's repeated quite a few times throughout." He pointed in quick succession toward other lines, his speech flying over Bill's head just as quickly. "It's clearly used a verb in most instances, but in some lines of the text, considering syntactical conventions of the Ancients' language, strangely enough it appears to instead be used as a modifier, in close relation to 'primarius'. Maybe. Or, maybe not. Might be to do with derivational morphology, but ..."

He suddenly tailed off, ducking his head slightly. Bit his lip. "But, I'm getting off track. Sorry. The point is, some of my initial translation is far from explicit. It might take considerably more work and time before I know if or how the rest of this," he stood up, waving at the inscribed pedestal then gesturing in turn toward the face of the device, "pertains to that. If the rest of it even does."

Shoving aside most of the spate of words he'd just been exposed to, Bill honed in on one thing in particular. "Wait ... the rest? You just said, the rest of it?"

A quick grin flashed across Jackson's face, there and gone fast enough that Bill couldn't shut down his automatic response in time, leaving him inappropriately smiling then grimacing at nothing. Jackson either ignored or didn't notice the facial indecision, briskly nodding. "What you're calling a faceplate is referred to in the second line of text on the pedestal as 'fensrea', which I'm confident is a variant predecessor to the Latin word fenestra, indicating a window."

"For seeing inside?" Bill's eyes widened, social gaff forgotten. "Or, or, wait ... a viewscreen? Like a monitor?"

"That's what I'm thinking, yes. As to your control interface, well, interestingly, written numbers in early Ancient are somewhat different from Latin numerals. The markings on your indentations? They're numbers. Specifically, one through seven."

Jackson pointed to a faint series of marks alongside two of the numbered indentations below the viewscreen. "And see those tiny symbols, there, and there? I've found references to them in several lines of text on the pedestal. This one is likely an 'on / off' switch, and, if I got it right, that one might initialise an input interface of some sort."

A power switch! Bill excitedly rubbed his hands together and scurried over to the storage unit. "That's, oh, that's ... thank you, Dr. Jackson. Thank you," he effused.

"Daniel."

Taking anti-static gloves and face shields off the shelves, Bill turned in confusion.

"Call me Daniel," Dr. Jackson clarified.

Uh, okay? Surprised by the unexpected source of this first offer of informality he'd received since starting at the SGC, Bill stalled a moment by pulling down two non-conductive drop-cloths. Deciding he was cautiously pleased by the acceptance it implied, he agreed, "Okay. Daniel," and fruitlessly tried to reach out to shake hands with his arms full. "And I'm Bill," he added. "Bill Lee." And, oh dear, he moaned to himself ... Bill Lee; as if the man didn't already know his last name.

"Bill." Dr. Jackson nodded and waved off the doomed attempt at a handshake.

Dumping his armload on the bench, Bill turned to hand one of the masks over, only to stop as he noticed the frown on Dr. Jackson's face. "What? Oh. Oh, I'm sorry. I assumed you'd be staying, but if you ... of course, yes, you have other things to do." Darn it, now he'd have to call one of the other labs for an observer, and wait until someone arrived.

"You're going to try turning it on? I thought you said you hadn't tested the depressions yet."

"You just confirmed what they are," Bill pointed out.

"Oh. Okay, well, don't you have to," Jackson waved aimlessly around the lab, "I don't know, consult with colleagues? Perform hours of testing and planning and safety measures, get permission or something?"

Bill shoved aside a flash of disappointment at the thought the man might not trust him. Because, really, that was understandable. After all, he was still, more or less, the new guy on the block. Dr. Jackson had probably only ever worked in the lab alongside Major Carter, and with her only just beginning to slowly ease herself back into work following her encounter with the alien entity .... But then again, this was his project. He was the lead, not her or anyone else.

"I've just completed close to sixty hours of monitoring and preliminary testing. There aren't any contraindications to proceeding ..." Bill realised Jackson was watching him closely. He deflected awareness of that penetrating gaze by fussing with a pair of gloves. "As far as safety measures go, this thing is too big to fit in the largest sealed glovebox on base, and there's no way to manipulate it without standing next to it. It's going to have to be tried at some point, and all the monitoring equipment is in here."

"So, no? You don't have to re-evaluate and submit justifications? Obtain permission?" A smile slowly crept across Jackson's face. "Okay. Just checking."
The direct result of Dr. Jackson's translation was that a non-invasive means of potentially activating the device became apparent. Dr. Jackson agreed to remain in attendance, eliminating the need to obtain an additional observer for hand's-on manipulation of the device interface.

15:47 : The initial attempt to activate the device, using a probe arm to press the control interface indentation Dr. Jackson had identified as a power switch, was unsuccessful.

A second attempt, with my manual finger press, was also ineffective. Due to a remote possibility the non-conductive lab gloves might interfere with proper contact with the key, I removed my glove. The subsequent attempt resulted in an immediate deep humming noise. Auditory recording analysis will be appended once available.

The key surface did not yield under my finger, however there was an immediate slight tactile sensation of very limited duration (somewhat under one second). It was akin to a vibration, although I suspect that may be too specific a descriptor – subjectively, I felt a slight, low tingle.

The hum was followed within a few seconds by the activation of a blueish-white apparently backlit viewscreen, centred on what had previously been erroneously theorised as a faceplate.

The viewscreen immediately displayed three lines of text (dark grey or black in colour). Dr. Jackson translated this text to be an instruction, stipulating a specific sequence of key presses. Note: the 7 indentations on the control interface are hereinafter referred to as 'keys'.

We did not follow those instructions. I obtained visual light spectrometry readings of the screen (data tables updated) and, after some discussion, I decided to monitor the active device for 12 hours. Further experimentation with the control interface is dependent upon evaluation of any changes from baseline status of all parameters.

At approximately 16:15 : Major Carter visited the lab.

Upon being briefed on the course and progress to this point in studying the device, Major Carter indicated agreement with the planned course of action but declined active involvement.

At approximately 16:30 : Dr. Jackson and Major Carter left the lab.

Dr. Jackson will upload his translation notes and summary conclusions, when available, to this file plus to the Ancients' language database in the appropriate directory.

17:01 : Unfortunately the device shut down midway through data collection. It activated immediately upon a press of the power key and once again displayed three lines of text. The data collection schedule was revised accordingly.

18:12 : The same event occurred.

19:23 : The same event occurred.

20:02 : The same event occurred. I did not reactivate the device.

Repeated data measurements and spectrometry (completed 21:15) are unchanged from baseline measures prior to activation of the device.

Plan: Call in a technician to monitor the non-active device through the night. Re-evaluate and come up with an action plan in the morning.

-- end notes -- logout 22:26 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-17 -- login 12:55 UTC-7:00

Engineering Physics Lab 19C
W Lee PhD

07:35 : No changes in status overnight.

Performed all data measurements and spectrometry to establish today's baselines(completed 08:50). Results were unchanged from baseline measures of 2001-02-16 prior to activation of the device.

09:18 : Following re-initiating all documentation and safety measures, I reactivated the device. Laboratory technician in attendance (R Weber). The device hummed as before and thereafter three lines of text appeared on the viewscreen, as before. I placed a call to Dr. Jackson.

At approximately 09:50 : Dr. Jackson arrived at the lab.

Dr. Jackson verified that the three lines of text translate as identical to those that appeared when the device was first activated yesterday. Dr. Jackson suggested the repeated shutdowns of yesterday may have been a result of the device 'timing out' in the absence of a user response necessary for its continued operation. He then left the lab (he was late for a department meeting).

10:24 : The device shut down midway through data collection. I reactivated it with the power key. Three lines of text were displayed.

10:24 : The same event occurred. The handwriting was obviously on the wall (so to speak).

11:37 : The same event occurred. I placed another call to Dr. Jackson.

At approximately 11:55 : Dr. Jackson arrived at the lab.

Dr. Jackson indicated the sequence and duration of key presses stipulated in the onscreen instructions, and I followed them as directed. The display immediately changed to two lines of text, which Dr. Jackson translated as an instruction for a further sequence of key presses.

At approximately 12:00 : Lab tech R Weber left the lab. Dr. Jackson remained in attendance.

Upon my following this next instruction, the device emitted a single low tone and the display changed to one short line of text. Dr. Jackson said it was an instruction to touch a single, specific key.

Upon my touching the specified key, the device emitted a prolonged high pitched tone and the screen displayed a word which Dr. Jackson translated as being the equivalent of 'error'. Several seconds later the screen display changed back to the previous instruction (to touch that same specific key).

Dr. Jackson expressed interest in the specific wording of the instruction – he indicated that what translated literally as 'second next', may or may not simply refer to order of progression. Dr. Jackson to append clarification.

I tried the single key press again, and obtained an identical result ('error'). The screen then, once again, reset back to the same instruction.

Given Dr. Jackson's suspicion as to possible ambiguity in the instruction, Dr. Jackson and I jointly decided it would be wise to consider the possibility of alternate interpretations.

"Well, I don't know, Dr. Jackson." Bill stepped away and scratched his head, baffled as to what to try next.

"It's Daniel."

"Daniel. Sorry," Bill acknowledged. "We pressed that key as part of the first instruction, and everything worked fine. Could it be a different number? Maybe you have the wrong key?"

"No, I don't have the wrong one. The instruction clearly says 'second next single touch three', and the three is this one." Bill inwardly cringed at Dr. Jackson's – Daniel's – curt tone of voice as he reiterated what was already perfectly apparent. "You can see that for yourself: irrespective of whether or not my translation of the number as being a three is accurate, the symbol on this key is identical to the one on the screen."

"Well, it clearly doesn't like what we're doing." And oh, well done; as if pointing out the obvious, for lack of anything better to say, was going to help here. At this rate, Bill would be back to 'Dr. Jackson' before even getting another chance to call him 'Daniel'.

"Uh huh." The irritation seemed quickly forgotten, as Daniel simply nodded and wandered a few steps away to lean against the wall cabinet nearest to the lab bench. "Okay, so if it's not the translation ..." The expression on his face was so deeply thoughtful as to ban interruption. So it was probably a good thing Bill had nothing useful to say.

Abruptly, Daniel straightened out of his slouch. "Then yeah, it must be the interpretation." He had his finger on the key before Bill could so much as process that he'd moved to within reach of the device.

Bill's attempted objection was waylaid by a single low tone from the device, overlaid with a soft, celebratory hoot. "Yeah. There you go. Not progression; it modified the implied subject of the instruction." He absently rubbed the tip of his finger against his t-shirt, watching the screen. "Oh, hey, this is interesting ..." he beckoned Bill closer. The majority of the viewscreen was blank, but various symbols were arranged at equidistant points along the bottom edge, two of them backlit with colour.

"That's an icon for the key you just touched," Bill both observed and accused as he pointed to the one glowing a soft purple. A pretty violet – wonder if the colour means anything specific, he mused to himself.

"Yeah, and I'm about to touch another one." He did, and a densely-packed vertical table of symbols sprang up on the left, filling the entire height and about one third of the width of the screen. "A keypad. Excellent," Daniel said with a touch of smug satisfaction. A moment later, though, he was less than pleased as the presumed keypad did nothing but sit there and stare back at them no matter how he tried to access it.

"So apparently it's not a touchscreen, and none of the indentations are directional selection keys. So what's the text table for?" Bill got a dark look in response, and hastened to explain himself. "No, I meant, the arrangement of text within the cells – are there any words, or concepts, or, I don't know ... does it say anything?"

"Hey! Do you have any idea how late you are?"

The harsh interruption came from the lab's rear doorway, then all too quickly was right behind Bill's left shoulder. In his ear. Or, well, actually more inches he cared to think about above his ear, what with the relative difference in height that placed him at even more of a disadvantage than did his ... never mind.

"You're not even changed yet. What the hell, Daniel? You were supposed to meet us topside an hour ago."

Other than to quickly glance up at the wall clock, Daniel didn't flinch nor take his eyes off the device display. "Forty minutes. But yeah, sorry. Got tied up," he mildly responded.

Colonel O'Neill, much to Bill's discomfort, turned his annoyance onto him. "You better not have let him touch that thing, Lindberger."

"Lee, Jack."

"What?"

"His name is Dr. Lee. Bill Lee." Daniel finally looked up from the device. "Look, why don't you go on, and I'll meet you up top after I change. Fifteen minutes, at the most."

"Yeah, well, don't bother. Carter called a few minutes ago – she's cancelled."

That brought Daniel's head up. "Is she okay?"

Bill wanted to know the answer to that as well. He liked Major Carter; she'd been relatively welcoming, all things considered, and he was looking forward to working more closely with her.

O'Neill shrugged. "She's fine. We've been dumped in favour of Cassandra and a vat of pecan praline ice-cream." He slipped his leather jacket off as he turned to leave. "So, it's an in-day for lunch after all. Apparently they're serving meatloaf. Teal'c's going to grab a table for us."

Oh, not a bad idea, Bill thought. He kind of liked the meatloaf. "Actually, lunch sounds great."

O'Neill stopped in the doorway. "A table with only three chairs." He switched his glare from Bill over to Daniel. "In fifteen minutes, we start with or without you." Then back to Bill. "And I mean it, Lee – no touching."

"Jack." The mellow expression on Daniel's face, rather than the verbal rebuke, appeared to be what drove the colonel from the room. "Sorry, Bill," Daniel turned to him. "He's right, though; I should probably head out. We are pretty much stalled here, anyway."

That suited Bill fine. Meatloaf was calling. "No, no, that's good. Well, I mean, good to take a break." He reached over and shut down the device. As an afterthought, he taped a monitoring lead to the control interface, beside the first key. Just because. "I'll update the research files while I eat, and we can meet back here after lunch."

Daniel winced slightly. "Truthfully, without some means of data input or cursor control, I really don't know how I can be of any help. I'm pretty confident that's just a raw alphabetical table." But then he shrugged, adding, "I don't think it'll do much good, but if you want to send me some hi-res stills of the screen display, I'll have another look at it later."

Drat. He'd already turned the thing off. Oh well, that was all right – he'd take his laptop to lunch to update the file notes, then return and power up the device again for the photos. He knew the key sequences now.

"If it turns out you need another person for the 'second next single touch three' ..."

Oh crap, that's right. "I need to get a lab tech in as an observer anyway," Bill assured him.
Upon arriving at a plausible alternate interpretation of the term 'second next' in the instruction, Dr. Jackson implemented the appropriate action. Upon his touching the key labelled 3, rather than myself, the device indicated this to be the correct input, by way of a tone and the appearance of a line of icons on the screen.

A further key press, this time of the key labelled 6, brought up a text table on the left side of the screen. Upon attempting to access the text table we determined there is no readily evident way to interact with data and icons on the screen.

Dr. Jackson indicated the text in the on-screen table was simply a non-meaningful alphabetical list, but offered to examine high resolution still images of the screen at a later time, in order to confirm his impression. Images will be appended when available.

12:40 : We decided nothing more of value could be accomplished at this time. I shut down the device via the power key. I locked up the lab after both Dr. Jackson and I exited.

Plan: Return to the lab following research file update and lunch break. Repeat all data measures and spectrometry. Assuming the availability of a secondary observer, and no data contraindications, re-start the device. Follow previous keying instructions to bring up the text table on the screen, and obtain high resolution photographic images.

-- end notes -- logout 13:48 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-17 -- login 20:10 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
W Lee PhD

This has gone very wrong.

I don't know what to say. While what's happened is awful, at the same time it constitutes an exciting and significant leap forward in our study of Device 1AC-0226.

It's clear that Device 1AC-0226 is directly implicated in this afternoon's events, however I'm not clear on what proportion of the details require documentation in this file – presently, the value of speculation is questionable, plus there are confidentiality issues to consider.

At this time, insofar as they do not breach medical confidentiality, I am entering into this record those objective observations which are unequivocally related to Device 1AC-0226, plus those second-hand observations deemed reliable that may later aid in determining its role in events.

Summary description of the present status of Device 1AC-0226, as at 19:45 UTC-7:00:

- The device is presently located in the SGC infirmary, in Isolation Room 21-A. It is supported on a wheeled non-conductive lab dolly.
- There is a circumscribed 16.5 cm x 8.4 cm area of increased temperature (fluctuating; see data table), on the front face of the device's pedestal, located 28.6 cm down from the bottom edge of the upper frame (annotated image appended)
- No other changes from baseline data have been detected. Other than infrared, hand-held spectrometry measures are unchanged. The viewscreen remains dark. Its appearance is the same as all the other times the device wasn't turned on
- Alpha radiation is as per baseline (persistent 4 MeV alpha radiation in the area of the seven keys on the control interface).
- Conductivity and thermal monitoring are ongoing.

To allay any concerns from infirmary staff I have blocked the alpha radiation by placing a layer of cellophane over the entire control interface. It is removed when and for the amount of time required for repeat scanning. Its presence does not impact any other data collection.

Events chronology:

At approximately 14:10 : I returned to the lab. Both doors were closed and locked. I entered via the rear door using my keycard.

Dr. Jackson was sitting on the floor, leaning against the base of the lab bench on which the device sat. He was obviously unwell. I immediately called for medical assistance.

When Dr. Jackson realised I was there with him, he indicated that I should check the device.

Good god, what had happened here? Legs shaking, Bill rose from his crouch to do as asked, and found the device just as he had left it. The display was dark, and the lead he'd attached remained in place. Lightly taped to the first key and coiled overtop the control interface, the lead was testimony it was highly unlikely the device had been manually interfered with.

Huddled against the side of the lab bench, Daniel continued to slur a barely comprehensible, "It's still on. Turn it off," even despite Bill telling him everything looked okay.

Bill had no idea what to do next. He got down next to him, grimacing at the feel of bile soaking into the knee of his pantleg. "It's off," Bill told him again, hoping the information was getting through. "Daniel, why did you come back to the lab? What happened?"

Eyes closed tightly against whatever ailed him, Daniel forced out a "Didn't," which only served to confuse Bill even further. He asked Daniel what that meant, but the sole response was a pained retch that curled the man further into his misery. The only thing left for Bill to do was to sit helplessly by his side.

"It's okay. Everything will be fine," he reassured, thinking oh, please let that be true, helplessly glancing toward the doorway. Where the hell were they? Wait... yes, finally. A commotion of feet in the corridor quickly manifested the medical team, and Bill awkwardly patted Daniel on the shoulder, telling him help had arrived. That he'd be okay now.
Upon his urging, I did leave Dr. Jackson momentarily in order to check the device.

I observed the viewscreen was dark, as it had been after having turned the device off at 12:40. I further observed that the monitoring lead I had attached to the device's power switch prior to going for lunch remained in place. I did not touch any part of the device at that time.

Medical assistance arrived several moments afterwards. Dr. Fraiser and her team assessed Dr. Jackson's condition.

First person to reach the lab, Dr. Fraiser quickly threw an arm across the open doorway, barring anyone else from entering. "Do we need hazmat?" she demanded, her gaze flitting between Daniel, Bill, and the device.

No, no, Bill assured her, standing up and opening his arms wide to indicate he was fine. It was fine. All the same, she instructed her team to wait at the door. He stepped aside as she alone hurried over and knelt beside Daniel. "Talk to me," she instructed Bill, all brusque of tone and gentle of hand and eye as she began her examination.

Bill quickly filled her in as best he could. It only took a moment as there was little to say; Dr. Jackson had been helping study the device; he had been fine when they'd both left lab for lunch. And when Bill found him an hour and a half later he was just as and where she saw him now. Not fine.

Tension straightened her body when Daniel once again let out a slurred "turn it off". Bill hastened to explain the device was indeed off, plus that all tests indicated it was, when both on and off, essentially inert. And in any event, he'd had more intimate and longer exposure to it than had Daniel, and felt entirely well. No ill effects whatsoever.

Mollified, she waved her aide forward and turned her full attention to her patient. "Daniel? Hey, are you with me? It's Dr. Fraiser. Can you open your eyes for me?"

The response to her was the same as had been to Bill. "Okay, okay," she soothed. "We'll give you something for the nausea, but I need you tell me what's going on. Can you do that?"

He groaned in reaction to the jostle of the aide applying a blood pressure cuff to his arm. "Spinning. Bad. Can't move ..." The words were forced out with great effort, his voice thick with pain. "Head hurts."

"Your head hurts?" Fraiser ran her hands over his head and neck. "Did you fall and hit your head?" The only reply was a low moan. There was a brief muttered exchange between doctor and aide. "Take his pressure again, then," she ordered, and produced a penlight. Softening her tone, she warned, "Daniel, I need to see your eyes," then gently pried an eyelid open. He grunted and drew his head back, letting out a sharp cry as she flicked on the light.

Daniel pitched to one side, his hand reaching out apparently for anything and nothing. Bill had to look away, really no good at all with this sort of thing. "Photosensitivity; and yes, pretty violent nystagmus," he heard Dr. Fraiser say, then in response to the low voice of her aide, "That high? Okay, I want a nitroprusside drip ready, the moment we get him to the infirmary."

Bill next heard, "Daniel, we're going to move you now," and in short order there was hustle and bustle and groaning and retching, and a splatter of fluid, all accompanied by sympathetic but altogether inconsequential commiserations. Bill's sense of uselessness heightened to the point he had no choice but seek a diversion. He turned his attention toward gathering spectrometers and other equipment, in preparation for the data collection measures he probably ought to have repeated prior to going to lunch.
In due course, the medical team removed Dr. Jackson from the lab. I'm not certain of the time. I imagine the medical response team can provide that information if it's of importance.

While preparing testing equipment to repeat all data measures, I noticed body fluids on the floor and one side of the lab bench. In order to ensure no contaminants interfered with repeat data collection, I moved away in order to obtain cleaning supplies.

Bill stopped dead in his tracks as rapid, shrill beeping came from ... no, that can't be. But there was nothing else in room that could have produced such a noise. He turned sharply, and sure enough, the inactive device was anything but inactive.

A beam of light coming from the area of the viewscreen flashed on and off, in pace with the beeping. He was momentarily dumbfounded, immobilised by confusion as one part of his mind urged him toward the device while another warned that curiosity killed cats. And then he didn't have time to act on either, as the sound and light quickly increased in pace until both were an intense, solid wall of urgency.

Bill was abruptly driven to the floor as a massive burst of white overcame both his vision and his balance. There and gone in an instant, it left him on hands and knees, gasping, rapidly blinking against the streaks and flares of artifact in his field of vision. His ears were ringing.

No, wait ... that was the alarm. The klaxon. He struggled to his feet, vision improving but still partially impaired, and staggered in the direction – he hoped – of the lab's nearest doorway ... only to find himself going to his knees yet again as he tripped over something in his path.
I heard a series of high pitched tones emanating from within the lab, from the direction of Device 1AC-0226. I then observed a narrow-focus beam of white light being emitted from the area of the device's viewscreen

The beam was blinking in pace with the interval between the tones. Both the auditory and visual signals rapidly escalated in tempo and intensity. Upon their crescendo, I was temporarily incapacitated by an abrupt flare of white light, bright enough to transiently impair my vision. It was accompanied by a momentary subjective sensation of displacement.

The impairment abated rapidly, however when I heard the base klaxon activate I remained slightly off-balance and unable to see clearly.

Oh god. Oh, good god. Bill knelt on the floor, staring past the remaining spots in his eyes. Couldn't be, just couldn't ... but, was. He scrambled forward the short distance between them, and with a trembling hand reached out to touch Daniel's chest. Please be breathing, please please please.

Yes, thank you. He was breathing. Good. It's good at least one of us is, Bill thought, his own breath caught in his chest. He knew taking in air wasn't the be-all and end-all of being okay, though – clearly not even close, in this case. Daniel had been in distress when they'd taken him out of the lab, his pain and vertigo worsened by the activity to the point he couldn't cope. And even so, just for a moment Bill thought he might prefer that Daniel to this one – to this deathly grey pallor, lax unresponsiveness, and bleeding nose and ears.

The device let out a few short, low beeps then fell silent. Struggling to push aside a strange mix of panic and excitement, Bill climbed to his feet and reached for the phone. And as he placed yet another call for help, he couldn't take his eyes off the device. No lights, no sounds, no viewscreen, no nothing. Dark and aloof, it occupied its bench with stark indifference. But not innocence.

Trolls were anything but innocent.
Therefore, I didn't immediately notice Dr. Jackson lying unconscious on the floor in the lab. I called for emergency medical assistance.

The device issued several short tones. I was not at that precise moment in a position to notice if any other activity accompanied them. A few seconds afterwards, however, upon being able to look over at the device from a distance, I observed the viewscreen to be dark. I did not see any external sign that the device might be powered on.

Medical assistance arrived quickly. Within seconds of their arrival, Colonel O'Neill also attended.

Parked in the middle of the doorway, Dr. Fraiser's authority aspired to twice her actual height in front of Colonel O'Neill. "I understand the urgency. Much better than you do." She spared a quick glance at him, then returned her attention to where Bill crouched at Daniel's side. "If that thing is the cause of this, I need to take a moment to consider the risks."

"Sure. Fine." Colonel O'Neill lifted his wrist, eyed his watch for a beat, then snapped, "Moment's up. Get in there."

"Colonel O'Neill," she protested. "I'm responsible for the welfare of every person who enters that lab ..."

He abruptly shouldered past her. "Yeah well, what about your responsibility for Daniel's welfare?" He covered the distance in five giant strides, pointing at Bill on the way as he ordered, "You, get the hell out of the way."
Due to the nature of this unexpected event, concern was again expressed about the possible need for hazmat clothing.

Upon discussion, Dr. Fraiser and Colonel O'Neill agreed that the need to obtain unfettered access to Dr. Jackson outweighed any as yet unidentified potential risks associated with the absence of hazmat protection.

Had I been asked, I would have advised them that was most likely the case.

Bill didn't hesitate to obey, shuffling back out of the colonel's way. Truth be told, he was guiltily relieved to surrender his watch over Daniel. Colonel O'Neill was much better at this sort of thing, Bill noticed as the man slid into place beside Daniel. Steady hands, unaffected by the brusque anger tainting every other part of the colonel, gently touched neck and chest and head, and as he reported what he found his voice was firm and confident.

"Breathing is pretty fast, Doc," he advised, glancing over at her. "Pulse is too. Got blood at both ears." He firmly, then way past firmly, pressed two fingers onto Daniel's sternum. "Yeah, he's out."

A hand unexpectedly landed on Bill's arm, startling him. "Are you still fine?" He turned his head to see Dr. Fraiser paused in mid-step at his side, her whole body straining toward Daniel while she ran her eyes over Bill. He nodded, trying to seem confident and every bit of fine. It wasn't a complete lie, really. His vision was mostly back to normal and he felt okay, other than being shaken and worried – but most importantly, he agreed with the colonel: Daniel came first.

Her arrival at Daniel's side, complete with aggrieved glare at O'Neill, dislodged the colonel, who stood and turned a whole boatload of negative attention toward Bill. "What the hell, Lee. What did you mess with," he accused, waving an arm toward the device. "Fraiser said you told them this thing was inactive. How did this happen?"

Scary man, but a good question. With his own attention now turned to the device, it occurred to Bill he really needed to check it out – just because the viewscreen seemed blank from where he stood, didn't mean it was. He moved with purpose toward it, which happily involved moving away from O'Neill.

Unhappily, he made it to within a few feet of the lab bench but no further. "Hey! Do the words 'no touching' ring a bell?" O'Neill challenged, blocking his way. "No touching, no looking, no nothing. No one's going near that thing until we figure out what happened here."

Bill's analytical side overcame the latent panic still swilling in his gut, snapping to the forefront to quickly parse the implications of that order. "Well, that's impossible," he voiced the obvious.

"Beg your pardon?" A threatening glower accompanied the threatening tone of voice.

Okay, so maybe the obvious to him wasn't so obvious to the colonel. "Assuming the device is implicated," he said, gesturing toward it, "it'll be impossible to figure out what, how, and why this happened without further studying it."

Dr. Fraiser appeared at their sides. "Right now, the most important thing is figuring out if it's safe to move Daniel out of here," she pointed out. "He's deteriorated considerably. If this is a repeat of what happened to him the first time you found him here, once more could well be catastrophic."

General Hammond swept into the lab. "What in the Sam Hill is going on?"
While Dr. Fraiser and her team assessed Dr. Jackson's condition, I attempted to undertake assessment of the device's status, however Colonel O'Neill explicitly ordered me not to do so.

During our conversation regarding Colonel O'Neill's order, General Hammond arrived at the lab.

He was briefed in summary form on study of the device and current events. It was at this time that Dr. Fraiser described a "blinding ripple of light" as having occurred in the elevator while transporting Dr. Jackson to the infirmary.

She maintained the light "came from" Dr. Jackson, but upon my enquiry was unable to state with certainty that it had actually emanated from his body. She was also unclear as to whether the light appeared immediately prior to, or concurrent with, Dr. Jackson's disappearance from the elevator. These are pertinent questions in terms of assessing any presumed link between the device and Dr. Jackson, plus in exploring the plausibility of devising a means to sever such a link, should it in fact exist.

General Hammond upheld Colonel O'Neill's orders as to the device. General Hammond further ordered that a way be found to relocate Dr. Jackson to the infirmary without risk of the same event recurring. That order was problematic, considering the need for direct access to 1AC-0226 in order to collect data necessary for that risk assessment.

The order was then revised: to render exposure to the device harmless so that it could accompany Dr. Jackson to the infirmary. Immediately or sooner. General Hammond then left the lab.

As it was unclear such measures might even be necessary, I took that as implicit agreement that I first determine if proximity to the device in its current state was already safe. Following a short discussion with Dr. Fraiser, Colonel O'Neill allowed direct access to the device.

15:09 : I commenced data collection. The viewscreen was in fact blank and dark.

15:44 : I discovered an increase, relative to previous measurements, in thermal radiation levels at the pedestal. The increase appeared confined to a roughly circular, well demarcated area comprising approximately one-third the area of the pedestal's front surface. It was not detectable at the sides nor the back of the pedestal.

Colonel O'Neill (still in attendance) was advised as to the new finding.

All other measures performed to that point were unchanged from baselines. Spectrometry measures via hand-helds, with the exception of infrared, remained unchanged. Alpha radiation levels at the keys of the control interface remained consistent.

At approximately 15:50 : Dr. Fraiser indicated heightened urgency in the need to get Dr. Jackson to the infirmary.

At approximately 16:00 : Dr. Fraiser strongly indicated greatly heightened urgency in the need to get Dr. Jackson to the infirmary.

Teal'c and Colonel O'Neill transferred the device to a lab dolly, for removal to the infirmary. Colonel O'Neill left the lab prior to transportation of the device.

At approximately 16:15 : The device and I arrived in Isolation Room 21-A. Monitoring and computer equipment to follow.

Major Carter and Colonel O'Neill arrived in the infirmary some time thereafter.

At approximately 17:20 : In the care of myself, Major Carter, and Colonel O'Neill, the device accompanied Dr. Jackson to the CT scanner.

During the scan the device remained parked in the corridor outside the room, approximately eighteen feet from the scanner itself, without any noticeable adverse effect on Dr. Jackson. While that distance is considerably less than is the distance from the Physics lab to the elevator, that successful separation indicates we probably have some ongoing leeway in terms of proximity.

The CT room door remained open, so when considering leeway of proximity it would be prudent to consider the possible influence of obstructions. The device first activated when the lab doors were closed, plus after the elevator door had closed. Although, the lab door was open that second time ... oh, I don't know.

20:10 : Major Carter has informed me that she will from this point forward be actively participating in monitoring plus any further study of the device.

Plan: Major Carter and I remain in attendance. Thermal, conductivity, and hand-held spectrometry monitoring will be maintained overnight. Other than that, there is no plan at the moment, as we remain forbidden to otherwise study the device.

-- end notes -- logout 21:46 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-18 -- login 03:35 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
S Carter Maj PhD

Having observed the ongoing monitoring of Device 1AC-0226 over the last four hours, and having reviewed this file in its entirety and spoken at length with Dr. Lee, plus consulted with Dr. Fraiser, I am confident that Device 1AC-0226 in its present state does not pose a proximity hazard.

Neither I nor Dr. Lee can, however, predict for how long 1AC-0226 will remain in its present state. The measurable thermal change and the activity witnessed in the lab by Dr. Lee are, in combination, convincing evidence that 1AC-0226 is not powered-off to the same extent as previously – 'previously' being each and every other time it had been manually shut down.

The earlier steady-state readings, absence of thermal fluctuations, and, of course, the absence of spontaneous activity constitute proof that Device 1AC-0226 is capable of at least two distinct resting states. Variable resting states, in addition to at least one fully interactive state, necessitates internal programming which may or may not be alterable.

The procedure for shutting down was identical in all cases: a single press of key number 1 while the device was in an active state. Therefore it is reasonable to suggest that one or more of Dr. Lee and Dr. Jackson's key presses, made during their last session with 1AC-0226 prior to the adverse events, may have altered the response of key number 1.

This could be the result of their manual entries either comprising new programming, or activating an existing internal instruction set. Both possibilities suggest potential avenues of study.

I have discussed the subject with Dr. Lee and Dr. Jackson.

"No way." The cracked whisper diluted the certainty in his voice, but it was clear to Bill that Daniel utterly rejected Major Carter's suggestion. "From start to finish, we simply followed directions, Sam. We didn't accidentally reprogram anything."

"Unwittingly is probably a better word than accidentally," Major Carter insisted. "It's definitely a possibility we need to explore." Bill wasn't sure that was true, given the application of Occam's Razor to scientific principles, but kept the thought to himself.

"Explore it, how? Lex parsimoniae, Sam," Daniel promptly expressed it for him. "Where do you even begin? That theory is untestable."

Bill winced at the annoyed tone as she shot back, "Oh, and like yours is?"

"No, of course it isn't," Daniel readily admitted. "Which is why I like it so much."

To Bill's surprise, Major Carter suddenly smiled so widely, so brilliantly, that the air of contention around the bed burst, popping out of existence. "You are such a jerk," she said, lightly pushing at Daniel's shoulder. The fondness in her voice, so at odds with the disagreement Bill had heard not seconds ago, was enlightening: a push and pull of equals, with unfailing respect.

"Yeah. So?" The reply would have been undeniably smug, if Daniel weren't so obviously ill and tired.

Bill watched him sag back against the pillows and close his eyes, and watched Major Carter stroke his arm and adjust the covers. Then she tugged at Bill's sleeve and they both moved away, back to his dim, cluttered little corner. His home away from home: a gurney pressed up against the wall, hemmed in by lab equipment. And by the Troll.

"Why don't you try to get some sleep?" Major Carter suggested. "I can stay and do the next set of observations."

Stay. For her it was a choice, but he was trapped here by Dr. Fraiser's overly cautious response to learning of his exposure to the energy pulse. Oh, and what a pulse it was – successful organic matter teleportation, courtesy of the device sitting right there not three feet away from him.

Well, mostly successful teleportation, if you considered health an important criteria.

He'd offered up a simple way to determine if he was affected – simply walking away and not turning back until he'd far passed the distance between the lab and elevator – but that had been rejected out of hand. The expressed reason for rejecting it was a bit of a downer, self-esteem-wise, but Bill supposed it was only practical: there were only two people familiar with his and Daniel's interactions with the device, and only one of them was presently running on all cylinders.

"What did he mean?" he asked Major Carter, accepting her offer by sidling past the Troll to climb onto the gurney. "About liking the idea that nothing we did had anything to do with 1AC-0226 not turning off?"

"That was his way of reminding me to concentrate on what we already know before chasing after what we don't," she answered with a shake of her head. "Subtle, huh?"

Yeah, well, it had been too subtle for him, Bill thought. He hoped that was more because he wasn't familiar enough with Daniel to read him, than it was due to him possibly being obtuse. "Right – if the change in the power key response was a function of some preset internal program, not anything we did, then ... " Bill shrugged. "Then, yes, you may as well move on from discussing how it happened to figuring out what to do about it, regardless of the how."

"Yeah. He's worried about spending too much time on difficult options when an easier one might very well be staring us in the face. And he's not wrong about that. But, the thing is ..." Looking worried herself, she glanced back toward Daniel's bedside, where a nurse was changing an IV bag. "How do we choose the best option, when we don't even know enough to figure out which ones are, or aren't, viable?"
During that discussion an additional possibility – that the power key's altered response was completely independent of Dr. Lee and Dr. Jackson's interaction with 1AC-0226 – was rejected.

The bottom line is that Device 1AC-0226 is presently unpredictable, therefore it is paramount that we discover a way to fully power it down. Toward that end, there are two possible avenues of investigation.

1) Ascertaining what key press or sequence of key presses might reverse the change in function of the power key

There are two possible means of exploring this option: enhanced translation of the pedestal inscriptions; and, attempting to fully power up 1AC-0226 in order to interact with it. Due to the very unpredictability we seek to resolve, the latter option should be avoided for so long as 1AC-0226 remains in a populated, unshielded area.

2) Attaining manual access to the internals of 1AC-0226

Attempts to access its interior via inspection and non-catastrophically destructive means have thus far been fruitless, however we should continue to pursue this avenue of study. Oblique laser shallow penetration of the outer shell should be considered.

This poses a dilemma: the cyclical thermal variations strongly indicate the power source itself may be located in the pedestal, and oblique laser penetration is a destructive process. The inscriptions, translations of which may facilitate either or both of the above options, are located on all sides of the pedestal.

Plan: For the time being, implementation of either of the above options has to wait until such time as Dr. Jackson recovers sufficiently to participate and / or permission for hand's-on access to 1AC-0226 is obtained.

-- end notes -- logout 02:12 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-19 -- login 10:15 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
S Carter Maj PhD

At approximately 09:40 : Using prints of the previously acquired high resolution images, Dr. Jackson began work on translating the pedestal inscriptions.

Requesting permission for laser penetration of 1AC-0226's outer shell is held in abeyance until such time as its necessity can be confirmed or negated. This is dependent on Dr. Jackson's progress, and / or any changes in 1AC-0226's status.

Baseline and spectrometry measures were repeated every two hours throughout the night and to this point. With the exception of infrared, all remain unchanged. Thermal and alpha radiation readings are stable and consistent. The viewscreen remains dark.

From this point on, the narrative portion of this file need only be updated twice daily unless new relevant information comes to light and / or any change-state observations occur. Data tables will be updated every eight hours and / or at any point change-state observations are made.

Plan: Dr. Jackson to continue working on the translations. Dr. Lee and I to meet with him at 18:00 to discuss his progress.

Plan: Continue ongoing conduction and thermal radiation / temperature monitoring. Continue to perform spectrometry every two hours. Reduce data collection for other measures to every four hours, in order to help lessen the frequency of distractions interfering with Dr. Jackson's efforts.

-- end notes -- logout 10:28 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-19 -- login 18:20 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
W Lee PhD

18:10 : Major Carter, Dr. Jackson, and I met to review status. Colonel O'Neill in attendance.

Dr. Jackson reports minimal progress, due to significant delays and interruptions, and to the complexity involved in interpretation.

Major Carter reports that owing to concerns about unpredictability, General Hammond remains loathe to allow hand's-on study of 1AC-0226. He advises he will reconsider only in the event the situation changes to the extent that Dr. Jackson and / or anyone else are no longer deemed safe, or in the event an unequivocally benign means of completely powering off the device comes to light.

Conversation surrounding impediments to Dr. Jackson's progress and the orders pertaining to direct interaction with the device ensued.

"Like hell you will." Colonel O'Neill drilled a fingertip into the mattress, right beside Daniel's head. Bill wasn't sure if it was supposed to be in emphasis, or an attempt to nail the man to the bed by his hair.

"In case it's slipped your attention, Dr. Jackson, you're still wired for sound and have more tubes stuck in you than does my grandmother's old TV. You're not going anywhere."

"I can't work in here, Jack."

"Just look at you – you can barely work anywhere!" O'Neill erupted. No sooner had the harsh words left his mouth, than he winced and stepped back. "Damn."

Shocked by the outburst, Bill tried to look elsewhere, only for his gaze to pass across Daniel and stutter to a halt at the unexpectedly calm expression on his face – his pale, haggard face, complete with badly bloodshot eyes and accessory oxygen cannula.

"God damn it." The colonel dragged his fingers through his hair, then raised both hands in what Bill at first assumed was apology. But ... wasn't. "I'm warning you, Daniel; I won't go through this crap again so soon." Exasperation oozed out of him strongly enough that Bill imagined dark tendrils reaching across toward the bed. "You do anything to screw yourself up even further, I won't even try to catch the pieces."

Daniel simply nodded. "I know. It's okay."

O'Neill let out a raw laugh. "Oh, I beg to differ: it's far from okay."

Major Carter stepped forward. "It wasn't his fault, Sir. I've already said it, and I'll keep on saying it until you really hear me: it wasn't anyone's fault. I made my own decision, and no matter the result, it was the right one."

Abruptly, Bill was lost. Apparently the focus of the conversation had changed while his eyes were taking a blink. It was probably time to hit the road ... not that there was anywhere he could go to avoid overhearing them. He tried, though, moving quietly back toward the Troll.

No one said anything else, though, and within a few moments Major Carter was waving him over. "Sorry, Bill. Come on back." She switched her attention to Daniel. "The colonel's right, Daniel. There's no way Dr. Fraiser is going to let you out of here. You're not well enough."

"Yeah, well, if I stay in here, I'm not going to make much headway any time soon." Disgruntled, Daniel pulled the oxygen cannula off. "'Time to take your blood pressure again, Dr. Jackson; just need to check the IV site, Dr. Jackson'; 'don't forget to do your deep breathing, Dr. Jackson' ..." He waved a hand over the photographs and papers piled on the bedside table and spread overtop of him, across the bed. "Oh, and of course, my favourite: 'can I move those papers for you', to which the answer is and always will be, get your hands the hell off my work."

"Oh, this is great; he's obviously feeling much better," Carter quipped, looking amused.

Daniel rubbed his neck, sighing. "I'm not ungrateful. Just, frustrated."

"Yeah, well, frustrated is better than ..." O'Neill held up a hand to ward off a nurse who was approaching the bed with an incentive spirometer in hand. "Okay, all right, I'll talk to Fraiser about trying to keep interruptions to a minimum."

Major Carter took the spirometer from the nurse and plunked it down in Daniel's lap. "But there are some things that can't be compromised on, Daniel, no matter how important it is to get those translations done. Collapsed pulmonary alveoli is one of them."

Really? That was the first Bill had heard of that; he knew about the hypertensive crisis the teleportation had caused, but in deference to Daniel's privacy he'd been trying hard to disregard the other snippets of medical information that leaked across the room. Which, he only just suddenly realised, might be a mistake. Oh, or, maybe not, considering that Major Carter was involved and was probably aware of –"

"Altered pressure, Bill. Affected my lungs, ears, sinuses," Daniel interrupted his thoughts. "Atmospheric or gravitation, or maybe both, I'm told. You look like you're wondering."

Bill started to hum and haw – oh no, it's private, he understands that – but part way through he noticed Daniel looked to be fighting off a grin. "It's okay, Bill. He doesn't mind," Carter told him. "I've been meaning to sit down and go over it with you. It's important information."

Yes, very important. Determining what variations of atmospheric, magnetic, or gravitational fields might be involved in the matter transportation process could well lead to eventually making it safe for use. And that was huge. He turned and stared at the Troll, his fingers itching to touch it, to worm their way inside it and tease out its secrets.

Colonel O'Neill evidently read him just right. "No. Big fat no, Lee. No one's touching that thing until after it's completely shut down, dead as a doornail. And even then, it won't be you," he pointed at Bill, then at Carter, "nor you. It's going to a shielded lab at Area 51."

"What? That's it? You just going to send –" Daniel stopped mid-sentence, mouth clamped shut, his jaw clenched tightly enough that the muscles visibly jumped.

"Sir," Major Carter protested. "They can't do that." Bill silently agreed; he really wanted to see this project through. It was instantaneous travel, for god's sake.

A quick look that Bill couldn't read passed between the major and Daniel. She turned to the colonel and very carefully said, "Sir, we can't just turn the device off." Which, given they had no idea how to do that, was so obvious a fact that Bill wondered why she'd bother to point it out.

There was a beat of silence, then Colonel O'Neill muttered "Son of a bitch," under his breath. He turned on his heel, and when he'd come around full circle, he looked even more annoyed than ever. He pointed at Daniel. "Figure it out."

"Jack ..."

"Stop talking, Daniel. Not another word. I'm ordering you: just get it done." He turned to leave, casting over his shoulder on the way out, "End of discussion."
The outcome of that conversation was that Dr. Jackson's request for discharge to a VIP room was denied, and the previous order – that we find a way to completely power off 1AC-0226 – was reiterated.

Summary information from Dr. Jackson's medical file was shared, which may be pertinent to the way in which the device effects teletransportation. Details and rudimentary analysis to follow when more information is available.

Plan: Colonel O'Neill will follow up with Dr. Fraiser on the possibility of reducing interruptions interfering with Dr. Jackson's ability to concentrate on the translations.

-- end notes -- logout 18:35 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-20 -- login 12:10 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
S Carter Maj PhD

Baseline and spectrometry measures remain unchanged. Thermal and alpha radiation readings are stable and consistent. The viewscreen remains dark.

Plan: Dr. Jackson to continue working on the translations.

-- end notes -- logout 12:14 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-20 -- login 20:54 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
W Lee PhD

I have been interviewed, and have been instructed to elsewhere document the details of this evening's events and my interactions with Major Carter and Dr. Jackson.

I am including here my objective observations of Device 1AC-0226, plus only such information, as to those events and interactions, that lends context to my observation of the device.

At approximately 17:00 : Major Carter and I met to discuss recent observations.

Soon after Major Carter's arrival, Dr. Jackson asked to speak with us.

"I don't think he's looking too good," Bill quietly observed. "Is he? What do you think?"

"I think I agree with you." Major Carter glanced across the room, to where photos and sheets of paper were piled on both overbed tables, plus strewn across the bed. "He's working himself into the ground."

"Well, shouldn't we do something? Stop him? Help him?" Bill followed her gaze, frowning at the sight of Daniel juggling a whiteboard and sheaf of printed images, trying to keep the IV line from getting in the way as he struggled to hang on to both and write on the whiteboard at the same time.

"I wish we could. I wish he didn't have to bear the brunt of this," she said, "but right now, he does. And the best way we can help is to stay out of his way."

Bill didn't understand that. Well, okay, he sort of did, because the translations were the only thing going right then, given their orders ... really dubious orders, but he was fast learning about military facilities and the weight placed on orders from above. No, the part he actually didn't understand was why she hadn't waded in there to help, and why she'd advised that he keep his distance as well. Because hey, at least Bill could hold up the whiteboard. No?

As Bill surreptitiously watched, Daniel scribbled on the board, then brought his knees up in the bed. The papers overtop his legs shifted, most of them sliding off to the floor, but Daniel only had eyes for those he held. Beside Bill, Carter's attention sharpened and she shifted forward in her perch on his gurney.

"Uhh, guys?" Daniel suddenly called over to them, still staring at the board. "Could you please come over here?"

They did, only to be greeted by an upraised finger. "Wait. Just a sec," Daniel muttered, and after more than just several of those seconds, he impassively looked at up at them. "I've got it," he told them, then immediately revised that. "Well, actually, I got it hours ago."

"It?" Bill questioned, not wanting to take 'it' for granted. Surely if Daniel had figured out the translation he'd be a bit more animated than this? This was exciting stuff. "Do you know what it says?"

"I knew what most of it said days ago, Bill. I just couldn't interpret it," Daniel told him. "But I've got it now. The right declensions, the syntax, context."

"So it's a grammar thing?" Major Carter asked lightly.

"Hm, close enough." Daniel's lips twitched, but the implied amusement didn't break free. "I've finished reading it through."

"So you understand all of it now? That's, that's really great. So ...?" Bill urged, eager to hear any tidbit that'd bring him closer to understanding the device.

"So, its central purpose isn't transportation," Daniel told them. "Bill, you remember that word I mentioned, the one littered here and there, that I was confused about? The one that appeared to be used both as a verb and a modified noun?" Bill hadn't a clue, but nodded anyway. "Well, once I got a better handle on context, it was a lot easier to figure out."

A nurse interrupted, chirping upbeat greetings to them all as she attached a bag of medication to the Iv's secondary line. Bill floundered in a mix of confusion and suspense as Daniel and Major Carter spent the interruption sharing another of those silent looks he had no hope of interpreting. For all he knew, they were telepathically discussing toilet paper.

As the nurse left the room, Bill surrendered to the realisation that he might not be able to keep up with these two. "What, then?" he asked. "It definitely transported you."

Daniel's gaze was firmly on Major Carter as he said, "That word I'm talking about? It's verb form is properly interpreted not as to understand or to grasp, but as 'to control'."

"Control, as in harness forces that enable matter transportation?" Bill asked, feeling his excitement build at just the thought of possibly learning how it works, and maybe even replicating it, instead of just being a bystander to other races' technology. "So, it's a research device? That's what it is?"

Daniel was impassive, not responding one way or the other, but ... "Oh, I'll bet that's what it is. There's probably data in there that could –"

"So, I think I need to leave now," Major Carter interrupted. "Yeah, I should go. You guys have fun." She glanced over her shoulder at them as she headed out the door, leaving Bill astounded that she'd leave at a time like this, when insight might be at the tips of their fingertips. That she had gone, left him feeling vaguely nervous.

Daniel watched her go, then turned back to Bill. "Sorry, but no. The word isn't used in reference to the ..." Daniel illustrated with a grasp and move gesture, "beaming thing. In fact, the beaming thing itself isn't even referenced as such anywhere."

Not as such? "As what, then?" Bill asked, becoming more lost by the moment.

"Nothing good," was the only response.
Dr. Jackson informed us he had made an important leap forward in understanding, facilitating his ability to interpret the inscriptions with a greater degree of confidence.

He referred to the nature of the difficulty he'd had with context, which he had now solved. He also informed us of a few particulars to do with translation, illustrating via the example of a specific Latin word (meaning to understand), and its interpretation.

Major Carter had business elsewhere and left, subsequent to which Dr. Jackson indicated there were several ambiguities he had not yet resolved.

Daniel began to gather together the papers strewn everywhere. Bill tried to get more out of him but failed, and reluctantly bent over to pick up the ones on the floor. He popped right back up again, though, as Daniel casually told him, "There are just a couple of things I have to clarify; I'm going to need to see the inscriptions themselves to do that."

"What? You want to go look at the Troll ... uh, 1AC-0226?" Bill felt himself blush at his slip, covering his embarrassment with a gesture toward the IV pump and all else tethering Daniel in place. "You can't do that."

Amusement came closer to breaking free this time, in a subdued huff and raised eyebrows. "Oh, I'm sure we can find somewhere to plug the Troll in over here."

To ...? "It doesn't need to be... oh," Bill stumbled, then recovered. "Yes, well, very good, but all joking aside, I don't know. Don't you already have images of everything?" Bill didn't even want to think about what Colonel O'Neill might say if he gave in to the request and Daniel's health worsened, whether just incidentally or not.

Daniel reached across to the bedside table and produced one of the printed photographs. A mottled, dried stain wrinkled the paper, obscuring most of the image. Gently, with a quiet seriousness that nipped Bill's intentions in the bud, Daniel told him, "Don't bother offering to reprint it, Bill. It's not all that I need. Please."

"The pedestal is too low; we'd need a higher dolly," Bill pointed out in a last gasp attempt to dissuade him. Well, second to last – he held back on invoking the name of O'Neill, as his coup de grace.

"Oh, believe me, getting down on the floor wouldn't be at all difficult. But if makes you feel better, the chair is probably low enough." Daniel began to swing his legs out from under the covers. "Look, I know you don't understand, but trust me: I need to see your Troll. Because, another equally accurate interpretation of the use of the 'control' word is, 'possess' ..."

Making direct eye contact, Daniel told him, "And the subject that word modifies is, well, actually ... you, Bill."
In light of those unresolved ambiguities, Dr. Jackson maintained he required access to the pedestal inscriptions themselves.

At approximately 17:45 : Following discussion with Dr. Jackson, I took thermal and alpha radiation readings of Device 1AC-0226 in preparation for moving it over so that Dr. Jackson could view the pedestal inscriptions.

Thermal and alpha radiation readings remained unchanged. The viewscreen remained dark.

17:58 : With the assistance of the duty nurse, Dr. Jackson transferred to the chair at the bedside. I then pushed the dolly supporting Device 1AC-0226 over to him.

Dr. Jackson leaned forward in the chair to view the inscriptions on the left side panel of the pedestal.

"Uh oh."

Such a simple, ordinary expression. Just four little letters. And in this case, uttered with such quiet composure as to seem entirely benign.

In the moment after it passed from Daniel's lips to Bill's consciousness, time seemed to warp for Bill. The viewscreen was at once both dark and lit with white; the nurse at once standing sentry behind the chair and bolting for the alarm.

Bill wondered if he'd just swallowed his tongue, in his surprise. When Daniel turned to him, though, all big eyes and humble apology, Bill found his tongue was still in place after all. "Oh my god. What ... why? What?" Too bad he was too anxious to use it effectively. Colonel O'Neill was going to dismember him.

"It was an accident," Daniel told him. "I'm so sorry. You saw: I was off-balance."

Dr. Fraiser rushed into the room, followed closely by a strapping big male medic. She took in the active device, and Bill, and Daniel in the chair right next to it, and stopped dead just inside the doorway. "It's fine," Daniel told her, his voice only just carrying across the distance over the noise of the klaxon. "It's harmless. You can come in."

Bill ignored the ensuing conversation, staring at the active display, at the blue-white of the viewscreen and orange of two backlit icons flashing on and off. Three vertical lines of text extended downward, to the bottom of the screen. The flashing was ... wow. Way too bright.

"Huh. It's an incident report," Daniel said, squinting as he leaned forward to study the display. He raised a hand to his eyes. "Okay. So that hurts."

"Then stop looking at it," Dr. Fraiser snapped, her hand on Daniel's shoulder pulling him back in the chair.

Bill's eyes were smarting as well; he could only imagine how uncomfortable it must be for Daniel, with his photosensitivity not yet completely resolved. "There must be a way to turn off the lights," Bill thought aloud. "To cancel them." Because hey, the screen was pretty useless for anything else while they were there – and this clearly was not a useless device.

Daniel shrugged off Dr. Fraiser and leaned forward again. "Yeah. It says to either touch them to bring up the details for each," he told Bill, "Or touch this icon to clear the display." He pointed toward the bottom left of the screen.

Just as more people came pouring into the room, chief among them Major Carter and Colonel O'Neill, the klaxon snapped off to leave a pronounced silence. So Bill had no trouble whatsoever hearing O'Neill quietly, calmly, and far too precisely for Bill's nerves, warn them, "Either of you touch that thing before Carter assures me it's safe, and I'll kill you myself."
Dr. Jackson lost his balance and reached out in an attempt to prevent a fall. In doing so, his hand inadvertently contacted the control panel.

This contact was approximately adjacent to the number 1 and number 2 keys. I am not sure which key(s) was responsible, given our theory that the function of the number 1 key, the power key, had previously been altered.

Regardless, the device activated. The duty nurse immediately sounded the base alarm.

At this time, the screen remains as was immediately after the device activated (images and visible light spectrometry data appended):

- The colour of the activated screen is as prior: a blueish-white.
- Toward the top of the display are two large icons roughly spherical in shape. They are backlit a very bright orange, and continually flashing on and off, one cycle approximately every two seconds.
- Three vertical lines of text are centred below the icons.
- A row of small icons is ranged across the bottom of the screen.

The device, Dr. Jackson, and I remain confined to Isolation Room 21-A. Major Carter is just now completing whatever data collection she deemed necessary. She will update the file and data tables ... whenever she does.

Plan: No longer my purview.

-- end notes -- logout 21:18 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-20 -- login 22:15 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
S Carter Maj PhD

Baseline plus full range spectrometry, plus an exhaustive range of other measures performed on Device 1AC-0226 in its active state. I will not list them all here; data tables have been updated and a new procedure list appended.

All data is unchanged from the latest time of collection prior to the accidental activation of the device, with the exception of visual light spectrometry. Thermal and alpha radiation readings are consistent with last previous.

Lt. Bowers (duty nurse at the time of the accident), Dr. Jackson, and Dr. Lee have been examined by Dr. Fraiser. Other than an exacerbation – due to over-work, as per Dr. Fraiser – of Dr. Jackson's previously existing ill health, she found nothing of concern. They do not appear to be suffering from any ill-effects as a result of exposure to the active device.

Dr. Jackson is now confident he is able to translate and correctly interpret the language. He is unable to file an updated translation report at this time, however has informally advised me that his translations indicate the device will remain in its present state until such time as manual input, via either or both of the control interface and touchscreen, is performed.

Having analysed the data collected, and consulted with Dr. Fraiser and with Dr. Jackson, I am confident that Device 1AC-0226 in its presently active state does not pose a proximity hazard.

Plan: Report these findings to General Hammond and Colonel O'Neill. Continue monitoring.

-- end notes -- logout 22:25 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-20 -- login 22:40 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
S Carter Maj PhD

General Hammond and Colonel O'Neill have been fully briefed.

General Hammond orders are that we restrict our interaction with 1AC-0226 to pursuing clarification of whether or not we are capable of controlling 1AC-0226 via completely powering it down.

Plan: Test our ability to shut down 1AC-0226.

-- end notes -- logout 22:45 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-20 -- login 23:24 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
S Carter Maj PhD

23:02 : Dr. Lee and I attempted a manual shutdown of 1AC-0226 via a single press of key number 1. The device appeared to shut down, in that the screen blanked. Dr. Jackson not in attendance.

The thermal radiation changes persisted, denoting the device was probably in a resting state rather than being truly powered all the way down.

23:07 : A single press of the number 1 key resulted in the immediate re-activation of the viewscreen. The display is identical to that of immediately prior to this attempt at a shutdown.

23:18 : Findings reported to General Hammond. Orders received: attempt to obtain clarification of how to shut down 1AC-0226 via accessing onscreen information.

Plan: Inform Dr. Jackson of this decision and assist him in accessing such information, in whatever way he deems most effective. Dr. Lee is aware.

-- end notes -- logout 23:35 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-2 -- login 10:55 UTC-7:00

SGC Infirmary – Isolation Room 21-A
W Lee PhD

Events chronology:

At approximately 04:00 : Major Carter arrived at Isolation Room 21-A as prearranged, in order to assist with ongoing data collection.

Monitoring as per the new procedure list (of 22:15 UTC-7:00 yesterday) had been performed throughout the night. All measures remained consistent. The viewscreen display remained unchanged.

At the time of her arrival, Dr. Jackson and I were in discussion as to the contents of 1AC-0226's viewscreen.

"What are you doing?" Major Carter almost jogged across the room toward them, obviously surprised to see them both hunched over the Troll. The question sounded partially accusatory, and probably rightly so, Bill acknowledged. They had permission now, so while technically they weren't doing anything wrong – aside from doing it at a ridiculous time of day – they really should have waited for her.

"Messing with it," Daniel abstractedly said, then pointed at another specific cell in the data table on the screen. "This one next," he instructed, and Bill did as asked. The string of characters centred on the screen grew by one more.

"The flashing orange lit up the whole room once the lights were dimmed for the night," Bill tried to excuse their having started without her. "It was really hard to get any sleep, so we finally decided to turn them off."

Standing behind Bill, she leaned forward to see the screen. "I see you didn't stop there, though, did you? I hope you've been documenting." Fortunately, she sounded more interested than annoyed. Bill held up the digital camera as evidence of his supposed diligence.

"Is that the alphabetical table?"

"Yes." Daniel pointed to another cell. "Now this one." Before Bill could respond, Carter reached from behind him and touched the screen.

Unfortunately, absolutely nothing happened. It was only then that Bill realised how much he'd been relying on the hope Daniel was wrong. On the hope that failure to find what they were looking for wouldn't matter.

She tried again, with the same result. "It won't work for you, Sam," Daniel told her. "Except for the power key, which will only switch it between hibernation and fully active now. Oh, and you can use this key ..." He pointed to the control interface indentation labelled with a six. "It's apparently broken." She frowned at him, the obvious question no doubt on the tip of her tongue.

"It does what it's supposed to do, but, no tingle," Bill filled in, working to cast off his disappointment. "The other keys all produce a faint sensation, but that one doesn't."

"Bill can use all the keys, but apparently no one else can. Except for the one without the tingle. So," Daniel shrugged. "Broken".

Bill noticed he hadn't mentioned the number three key, that both tingled and had now worked twice for Daniel, once back when Daniel had originally touched it, and again not quite an hour ago. He understood that choice, though; the less said about that specific keying sequence the better.

"Count yourself lucky, Sam," Daniel said. "It may not work for you, but it took a serious dislike to me." He flashed a wry grin, then ducked his head into Bill's field of view. "This one," he reminded him, pointing again to the cell he'd chosen, then to another. "And this one next."

Bill did as asked, and their query grew in length. "It's an on-screen keyboard, Sam. I've accessed a help file of sorts, and we're just about to ask it another question. This one and these two, and then enter, Bill."

"Another? So what have you already ... oh, wow," Carter leaned in further as Bill entered the query and the keyboard abruptly disappeared, making way for long lines of text that immediately filled the screen.
I explained to Major Carter that we had successfully turned off the incident report icons, and it was jointly decided that we would carry on interfacing with the device, in an attempt to locate information as to how to power down the device.

Images were obtained of all screen changes and will be appended when available.

We accessed the previously discovered on-screen alphabetical table via a single press of the number 6 key, as before.

Using the table as a touchscreen keyboard, we accessed what Dr. Jackson explained to essentially be a query-based information file.

"What does it say?" Carter asked, poking ineffectually at the screen a couple of times.

It was a few minutes before Daniel leaned back in his chair. "Nothing helpful." His voice was thick with fatigue as he tipped his head back and rubbed his eyes. "Sorry. I guess I messed up the question. It's giving me historical and sociocultural information. You may as well clear the screen, Bill."

Major Carter reached out and massaged his shoulder. "I'm sorry. You'll get it, though," she encouraged. "It'll be all right."

"Oh, no, that got done almost an hour ago." Daniel waved off her concern. "The instructions were dead easy to find; touch an icon and you're there. It it was a simple reversal."

Bill almost smiled as her eyes widened in obvious delight. "Oh, that's great Daniel. Are you sure? Absolutely certain?" Almost smiled ... but not quite, because despite Daniel's confidence, Bill wasn't willing to assume the instructions they'd just followed had in fact freed Daniel from the Troll's malicious interference. No matter what the display instructions told them, Bill needed to see it to believe it.

"Okay, wait just a minute here," Carter suddenly said, her smile fading. "You found the instruction and believe it worked, so ... what's wrong?"

"Who said anything was wrong?"

"Oh, please. The day Daniel Jackson ignores historical and sociocultural information is the day there's something terribly wrong. Is it that you're worried about what might happen when we test it? That's understandable, Daniel. We all ..."

Daniel grimaced as she trailed off, then hung his head when she turned a penetrating look onto him. "If you've disconnected yourself, then why are you still searching the device? And don't bother telling me you're trying to turn it off." She firmly grasped both sides of his head and brought it level to make eye contact. "What's going on?"

"I'm pretty sure you have somewhere else you need to be."

"No, Daniel, I don't."

Uh oh. Suddenly finding himself caught between two notched bowstrings, Bill slid out of his chair. He moved back, and leaned against the side of Daniel's bed where he was far enough away not to intrude but close enough to hear them. Whether included in the conversation or not, he was personally entangled enough in the situation that he had every right to hear whatever might be said.

"Jack's order was specifically just to me for a reason, Sam. You're under General Hammond's orders ..."

"Which include a directive to assist you in whatever way you think best," she shot back.

That seemed to give him pause for thought, but then he asked her, "Okay, but ... assist me in doing what, exactly?" He took one look at her face and nodded sharply. "Right. So he did specify."

To Bill's surprise, it appeared that last volley had won the battle – whatever the hell it had been about? Partway to the door, though, Carter stopped and came back. "I'm glad you're safe, Daniel." She kissed him lightly on the cheek, adding, "Stay that way. Both of you."
Under Dr. Jackson's direction, individual characters from the table were selected, by means of simply touching them on the screen, and similar to our own form of data entry, letters were combined into words and sentences, to form a query.

Dr. Jackson entered a variety of simple, inconsequential queries in order to become familiar with the system. He then entered a query preliminarily related to carrying out orders defining his priorities in interacting with the device.

The query failed, producing a response unrelated to the intended question. Dr. Jackson surmised he had erred in formulation of the question.

Major Carter left the room at this time, as she had other commitments.

They both stared at the open door after she left, Bill with questions swirling in his head and Daniel with a closed-off expression on his face. After a moment, Daniel turned back to the Troll's screen, saying, "Let's get back to work. It has to be in here somewhere."

Bill settled back in next to him. He touched what Daniel told him to touch, and erased the screen every time Daniel said they'd hit a dead end yet again. There was one time that seemed promising to Bill, when Daniel sat staring at the screen for far longer than Bill thought was warranted, given that the entry wasn't very long. When he asked if that was it, though, if that was what they were looking for, Daniel quietly said, "No. At least, not yet," and refused to elaborate.

Eventually, after two hours of touching and reading and erasing, during which time Dr. Fraiser and her staff periodically interrupted with IV checks, growing progressively more insistent about their need to deliver medical care, Bill hesitantly ventured, "What if we can't find it?" The more they bombed out, the more worried he was becoming.

"Whether we find a way to remove you from it or not, it'll be all right, Bill. You won't be going to Area 51."

"I don't know. Maybe it wouldn't be so bad." Open mounting anxiety, insert nonsensical blather. "I mean, 1AC-0226 will be there, and I am a research and development scientist ..."

"You'll be a research subject," Daniel snapped at him. "And if they ever get wind of this thing's purpose, they'll have you enslaving other research subjects against your will, and they'll torture them with matter transportation experiments."

Daniel's anger blazed incandescent as he made sure Bill wouldn't be blathering nonsense about this ever again. "Highly advanced genetics knowledge, human / non-human differentiation, Bill; it's right there in the query file. I may be just a linguist, but I think it's pretty clear: we're both proof our DNA is close enough to the creators of this thing for enough compatibility that it doesn't outright kill us. I doubt the same can be said of animals."

Bill hung his head at hearing it all laid out in the open for the first time. He'd understood the implications not long after Daniel had filled him in on what that very first keying sequence had done, but up until now they'd only actually talked about the need to reverse or defeat it. Hearing the compelling reasons voiced aloud, well, that irrevocably made it real.

But really, deep down, he'd known all along it was real, voiced or not. Deep down, he'd known enough to fear for both his and Daniel's futures pretty much as soon as he'd been told about it ... about how he'd been programmed in as the 'primarius', the master, and the only possible operator of the device. Detention, imprisonment, bondage ... elegantly enforced. He'd become the controller the moment he'd followed the very first instruction the Troll had thrown at them. And with the second sequence, ending with Daniel's single key press, he'd gained his first captive.

Bill knew Daniel was probably right about Area 51's potential test subjects. Probably even their closest DNA relatives wouldn't last long, considering the effect just two teleportations had on Daniel. Area 51 might start with the best of intentions, with animals, but their subjects would likely die far too quickly to satisfy the NID.

"Sorry, I'm sorry. I shouldn't have snapped at you." Daniel sighed, a deep, weary exhalation that worried Bill even further. He sounded just about done in.

If this man couldn't find a way to release him, no one could. "So what are we going to do?" Bill whispered, not really expecting a response. What was there to say?

"Jack ordered me to figure this out, to take care of it, and I will," Daniel told him.

Bill's brain stalled out momentarily, at that. But a second later, with a mental jolt, he abruptly understood what Daniel and Major Carter had been arguing about. And wow, had he been slow on the uptake, or what? "Rope," he blurted. "He gave you some rope. Colonel O'Neill realised the order to send the Troll to Area 51 meant you'd have to go with it. So he gave you an open-ended order that ... "

It was as if a locked gate had suddenly been opened, giving him a glimpse into Colonel O'Neill's domain. "He's transferred the responsibility onto himself, if there's any fallout from us skirting around General Hammond's orders."

Daniel nodded. "I'm the only one who can read the language, and you're under my direction right now, so you're protected. You understand? You are under my direction here." When Bill nodded that, yes, he understood, Daniel told him, "But Sam isn't. She's vulnerable, Bill. Especially if anything goes astray here."

Goes astray? "Uh, goes astray, how?" Bill hesitantly asked, not sure he wanted to know just how things could go any further sideways than they already had.

Dr. Fraiser bustled in, stopping beside them, hands on hips. "You need to stop before you both collapse from exhaustion. I'll give you twenty minutes more, and not a minute longer." Her voice softened with understanding, though, as she told them, "There are some people on the way from Area 51. General Hammond's given them permission to see this thing. They should be here in a couple of hours."
Dr. Jackson reformulated the question, however the next attempt also produced an unrelated response. He continued to attempt to successfully refine the question.

Following two hours of such efforts, in spite of a lack of success Dr. Jackson affirmed his commitment to successfully carrying out his orders. However, Dr. Fraiser intervened. She insisted we postpone further attempts until a later time, as Dr. Jackson required medical attention.

Dr. Fraiser further informed us of the impending visit of Area 51 personnel.

As she left, Daniel sagged back in his seat and muttered something indistinct under his breath that sounded to Bill vaguely like, "Okay, so now it's yet" ... but that didn't sound like it could mean anything, so he figured he must have heard it wrong.

With another long sigh, Daniel tiredly sat back up and suggested, "Let's just try one more thing, okay? It'll just take a minute, then we should probably pack it up for a while."

Bill settled back in at his side, touching this and that until a full query was created and Daniel told him to enter it. It was fairly short and didn't take long to read. Without having him clear the screen, Daniel rattled off a longish sequence of key presses so quickly that Bill had a little trouble keeping up. But he did, and right after he keyed the last one, the screen blanked. Completely blanked, so that Bill thought maybe they'd actually just powered the thing right the way down as they'd been ordered – no, too soon; you're still in there, his fear shouted at him – but then the Troll abruptly blinked back to life.

The screen was blank, just a sheet of blueish-white. No query response, no keyboard, no nothing. "Was that supposed to happen?" Bill asked, turning to look at Daniel. "What was that?"

Daniel rubbed his mouth, mumbling through his hand. "Ah, I have no idea." He then spoke up more clearly. Surprisingly briskly, in fact, for someone so very tired. "Okay, so let's do this: press three, three, one, then six, in that order ... then let's go have some breakfast."

Okay, why not. As Bill reached for the control interface, though, Daniel stopped him with a touch to his hand. "Bill, I realise you feel the beaming thing is an important technology, that it should be studied, and I understand why ... but I think you know how the NID might choose to study it, if they knew what this thing can do, right?"

Right. Except, when it came right down to it ... "I'm not sure I can lie, Daniel," Bill whispered. At what price, silence?

"Yeah, I know. That's okay," Daniel said. "Three, three, one, six, Bill, in that order. We'll talk about it later."
We jointly agreed to try one last query prior to abandoning our efforts until later in the day. That query offered instructions for two separate, sequential sequences of key presses, which we attempted.

The result was that the viewscreen momentarily blanked, then re-activated to display a single line of text which Dr. Jackson translated as the rough equivalent of "waiting, input when ready".

07:44 : Interaction with Device 1AC-0226 terminated upon the insistence of Dr. Fraiser.

At approximately 08:15 : Dr. Jackson was feeling unwell, and received medication.

08:50 : I completed a repeat of all data collection measures, performed as per latest procedure list.

All measures unchanged from last previous. Cyclical temperature variations of the previously noted thermal changes (on the front of the pedestal) remained unchanged. Ongoing real-time temperature monitoring maintained.

The device remained active, with a single line of text on the display, as noted above.

10:32 : I was awakened by the arrival of Area 51 personnel, accompanied by Major Carter and Colonel O'Neill. Colonel O'Neill chose to absent himself to Dr. Jackson's bedside.

Dr. Jackson remained deeply asleep. Colonel O'Neill refused Area 51 personnel's request to wake Dr. Jackson for confirmation of the translation of the single line of text on 1AC-0226's display. I explained to them that Dr. Jackson had already translated the line as indicating the device was in some sort of waiting or ready state.

10:35 : A member of the Area 51 'official rubbernecking bystanders club' (as per Colonel O'Neill) unexpectedly reached out and touched the control interface. He claims he touched the indentation key number 6 in the desire to activate the onscreen keyboard. Major Carter concurs as to the key, as she was standing directly behind him and had good view of the control interface panel.

The device immediately shut down. The attached temperature monitor pad registered a prompt reduction in heat at the front panel of the pedestal.

A number of attempts, by several different people, to restart the device using control key number 1 (formerly the power key) failed. After some time of this, Major Carter requested that I attempt to restart the device. My attempt also failed. I further attempted to gain a response by pressing all the control panel indentations singly and jointly in various combinations, also without success.

At approximately 10:48 : Colonel O'Neill remained adamant in his refusal to wake Dr. Jackson. I do not blame him. It's a dumb request, as Device 1AC-0226 is currently non-operational and there's nothing to read. Major Carter suggested that she and Area 51 personnel adjourn to the lab to study The Research File.

At approximately 10:50 : Major Carter and all Area 51 personnel, save one who remains with Device 1AC-0226 to further observe whatever he wants to observe, have left the infirmary. Colonel O'Neill remains. He appears quite content.

Plan: Not my purview.

The control interface is completely unresponsive. I am perplexed as to what could have caused the sudden shutdown. Other than the enigmatic 'ready-state' message on the screen prior to Area 51 personnel's interference with 1AC-0226, there was nothing untoward nor ambiguous in my and Dr. Jackson's interaction with the device nor any indication that it was about to malfunction.

I remain in attendance.

For the record – even though this is not the appropriate record in which to note this – I would like to express my thanks to Major Carter and Dr. Jackson, and also to Colonel O'Neill, for such an instructive experience.

-- end notes -- logout 11:45 UTC-7:00


...................................................................



2001-02-21 -- login 15:44 UTC-7:00

Engineering Physics Lab 19C
S Carter Maj PhD

This entry is made in order to complete the SGC local Research Record on Device 1AC-0226.

All data tables and detailed procedure notes have been updated and bundled with all existing image and translation files, in preparation for sending to Area 51. As Area 51 has no interest in narrative notes, this narrative file will not accompany the data bundle.

Unfortunately, due to a camera malfunction resulting in images not being saved to the digital memory card, images taken of the viewscreen display during Dr. Jackson and Dr. Lee's interaction with the device earlier today are unavailable.

Transfer of the device itself to Area 51 is pending Dr. Fraiser's assessment as to Dr. Jackson's fitness to leave the infirmary – it will not be moved until such time as Dr. Jackson can be moved.

Dr. Jackson appears confident that a test of his ability to safely be removed from the proximity of 1AC-0226 will be successful. Dr. Fraiser remains unwilling to release him as yet. She is also unwilling to move the device from the infirmary as a means of performing the test; as the device pulls Dr. Jackson back to its location, she is concerned about a delay in treatment should the test fail. Area 51 will just have to wait.

Dr. Lee has successfully returned to the lab, and beyond, with no adverse events as a result of the increase in distance from Device 1AC-0226. This may be inconsequential, however; both he and Dr. Jackson disagreed with the prevailing sentiment that Dr. Lee might have been afflicted with the same misfortune as was Dr. Jackson, and neither belief was ever tested before now.

Device 1AC-0226 remains unresponsive, including to Area 51 personnel's rash application of high voltage electrical stimulation. The previously increased, cyclical thermal radiation from the front pedestal panel has been constantly monitored, and as at 12:15 UTC-7:00 was found to have returned to its earliest measured state – thermal reading in that area is now identical in temperature and stability to the remainder of the device's shell.

I have thoroughly reviewed all documentation and data on Device 1AC-0226, and cannot find any indication as to why it powered down, nor why it remains unresponsive. The control interface appears dead, however some hope remains that 1AC-0226 may yet respond to stimulation at some point in the future. If not, my recommendation to Area 51 would be to pursue breaching the external shell, in order to gain access to its interior as an alternative means of study.

While there is no tangible evidence toward which he can point in support of his belief, it is Dr. Jackson's opinion that Device 1AC-0226 is bricked.

-- File closed: 2001-02-21 , 16: 00 UTC-7:00 -- logout 16: 01 UTC-7:00

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S is for Snapshots
by [personal profile] thothmes

The Broca Divide

From: Maj. Gen. G. Hammond, commanding, S.G.C.
To: Maj. Gen. S. Barden, commanding, N.O.R.A.D.
CC: Office of General Jumper, Joint Chiefs, Pentagon
Re: Recent Wildfire Declaration

Thank you for your inquiries into the recent Wildfire declaration for our half of the facility. Were we to need assistance, be assured that you folks up in N.O.R.A.D would be the first people, after the Pentagon and the President’s Chief of Staff, that I would contact and the I have no doubt that should I need to bring you in on the situation, they would authorize that. Our portion of the base has been secured at this time, as you well know, since the Wildfire declaration has been lifted.

Your offer of help and the inquiries that came with it were a masterful display of delicate fishing for information, which I know you are well aware I cannot supply. Classified, unfortunately, means classified, and the actions and mission of this portion of the base are, at this time, the most highly classified military secrets of this country.

What I can do is point out what you know. We do extensive lab work here, employing both military and civilian scientists. You have no doubt noted the transshipment of hazardous chemicals and materials through your portion of the base, as well as the transshipment of armaments and explosives. Safety is the highest concern, but accidents and unexpected events happen on even the best regulated of bases. At no time was your portion of the base in danger of contamination from events down here, precisely because of the Wildfire declaration.

I realize that the disruption to the important work of your base due to need to evacuate following our arming of the self-destruct mechanism at Level 28 was not merely annoying, but alarming. I have spoken with the Pentagon about precisely this issue, and I have an agreement in principle to start planning towards the goal of moving N.O.R.A.D. to Peterson. Knowing the efficiency of General Jumper’s office, I assume that you have already received the memo about this. If not, then please excuse the breach of etiquette in informing you through backchannels in a matter involving your command.

I look forward to seeing you in our regular weekly meeting, and I will be glad to handle any follow up questions and concerns at that time.

On a less professional note, I hope that you will be able to show off pictures of that new grandson of yours. Grandchildren and a glass of good scotch are some of life’s greatest pleasures, now that our medical staff have declared a fine cigar to be off limits.

Sincerely.
George S. Hammond
Major General, S.G.C. Commanding

Singularity

Aw, come on, Janet! Please reconsider.
I know a new kid and a new dog all at
the same time is a lot to take on, but
remember, Cassie’s a farm kid, and she’s
used to taking care of animals. She needs this,
I think. If I pay for a dog walker will you change
your mind?

Jack

The Serpent’s Lair

Dear Uncle Cliff,

I read your recent letter to the editor in the Denver paper about the bright flashes seen in the sky a few weeks ago. As you know I work at a highly classified facility here in Colorado Springs, and I assure you that whatever source you got your “facts” from was not in possession of accurate information. I can tell you with utter certainty that those lights were not initiated at the orders of the U.S. Federal government, nor were they intended to alarm cattle or encourage ranchers to move their herds off of Federal land or surrender their grazing rights.

I know that times are hard at present with the drought conditions, and that ranching is a low-margin business. I know that Aunt Patty and your boys are depending on you. Under the circumstances, I very much understand why it seems like even the stars in the sky seem to be working against you, let alone the Feds, but believe me when I tell you that the Federal government did not authorize those explosions. Officials from N.O.R.A.D. here in Cheyenne Mountain where I work will be submitting a refutation of your letter in coming days, pointing out that it is their job to monitor all activities and communications that might affect troop readiness or cause alarm in citizen populations, particularly those that might be construed as resulting from enemy action, so that in the event that the Federal government had planned something to cause those flashes, they would have been informed of it beforehand. They were not, and for several minutes their base was placed on high alert as a result. This is God’s honest truth, Uncle Cliff. Please don’t write back to try and refute them with something you have read. It is of course your right, but I really don’t want you to end up looking foolish years from now when the whole thing is figured out.

I wish I could tell you more, but that’s really all I can say about the matter.

Please tell Aunt Patty that I’d love to come to Sunday dinner sometime, but I don’t always know too far in advance when I’ll have the time off. If she doesn’t mind just a few hours notice, I’ll be there as soon as I have a Sunday free. It’s a joy to be stationed so close to family again. The only person within reach at my last posting was a classmate from my high school I ran into at the base PX from time to time. We were not close.

Love,
Walter

In The Line Of Duty

Dear Sam,

Here is a piksure of a mermaid.
She is pretty like you.
She has sparkley hair. Don’t you wish you did too?
I was going to make you a dog because you said the
one I made for Uncle Jack when he broke his leg was grate,
but Mom said that he is a dog person, and you are a cat person.
Uncle Jack does look a little bit like a dog sometimes,
But I don’t think you look like a cat at all. So I made a
mermaid instead.

My teacher says my speling is getting better. Spelling here is
much harder than it was in Toronto.

Mom says Uncle Jack is going to ask General Hammond
to let me come visit you. She says you are very sad.
Don’t be sad, Sam. When I come I will give you
a big hug, and another piksure.

Be brave Sam. Remember, we are very brave.

Love,
Cassie

Holiday

From: Maj. Gen. George Hammond, commanding, S.G.C.
To: Lt. Patton Sherman, Office of Budgetary Oversight, Pentagon

While I realize that your job cutting waste and fraud from the budgets of the commands under your review is an important one, and that the duty to the pocketbooks of the American taxpayer that you feel is compelling, I think that you are getting way down into the weeds with this one, son. Dr. Daniel Jackson is a civilian under my command, and the large bill that he racked up in the diner on Fifth Street in downtown Colorado Springs was a necessary expense. He did not have access to an expense card issued by this command with him at the time, and he ended up using his personal credit card for the expense. I told him to seek reimbursement from your office, and he duly did so. In triplicate. My staff inform me that since then there have been nine separate rounds of denial and resubmission.

I am a Major General, and a busy man. I tell you that this is a legitimate expense incurred by a valued member of my command while acting in his capacity as a part of that command. I have wasted enough time on this matter for someone who breathes the kind of rarified air that Major Generals breathe, and if you want to breathe that kind of air yourself someday, I suggest that this matter never crosses my desk again.

Pay him.

Sincerely,
Major General George S. Hammond,
S.G.C., Commanding

1969

Major Lawton C. Pryor
Records Office
Department of Veterans Affairs

Dear Captain Carter

I am pleased to inform you that there is no Michael Knudsen in our records who enlisted in 1969 and served in Vietnam. My sources in the Pentagon do have a record of a Michael Knudsen who was drafted in 1969, but was classified as 4F due to the lingering effects of a childhood elbow fracture, which prevented him from fully extending his left arm. As he was not ultimately enlisted, and is thus not a veteran, I am afraid that I cannot offer any further clues as to his whereabouts.

Have you considered hiring a private detective? These days a good private detective will have knowledge of specialized databases and computer accessible sources that can make a search of this type quite easily resolvable.

If there is any way that I can be of further use to you, please let me know.

Sincerely

Maj. Lawton C. Pryor

Learning Curve

Dear Mountain View Elementary School Community

My name is Col. Jack O’Neill, of the United States Air Force, and am currently stationed at Cheyenne Mountain. Some of you may remember me from last year’s Father Daughter Dance, when I had the honor of attending as the guest of Miss Cassandra Fraiser, a local child who has attracted the friendship and good will of the team I lead.

It has recently been made crystal clear to me that a child that I brought to visit Mrs. Struble’s class, Merrin Orban, had not yet been fully cleared and thoroughly evaluated for the possibility of contagious organisms beyond the initial panel of tests that were run at my base when we first arrived there. I know that the principal has by now informed you that Merrin was disease free, and that you need not be concerned that your children were exposed to any dangerous pathogens. On behalf of myself, my team, my command, and indeed the entire U.S. Air Force, I would like to apologize for the distress that my actions have caused you, as parents and educators, and the children, who were understandably upset by the blood draws that were taken out of an abundance of caution.

I also want to make it unmistakably plain to all of you that had my commanding officer known of my intent to take Merrin off the base that day, he would have stopped me. You should know that I have received a letter of reprimand in my file regarding this incident, and I think I can safely say that such an incident will not take place again.

I plan to attend this Thursday’s PTA meeting, so that any of you that want to ask questions or express your concerns directly to me will be there. Dr. Janet Fraiser, the doctor who ran the tests on both Merrin and on the blood samples that the children who met Merrin that day provided will also be there.

Sincerely,
Colonel Jonathan J. O’Neill, U.S.A.F.

A Hundred Days

While You Were Out:
Recipient: Dr. Daniel Jackson
Caller: High Peaks Lawn Care

Message:
We were given Dr. Jackson’s name by our client, Col. Jack O’Neill, in case we should have difficulty getting in contact with him. Col. O’Neill pays for our service monthly, in advance. He is now two weeks overdue for payment, and have had no luck reaching him. Please have Dr. Jackson call us at (719) XXX-XXXX [number redacted] to let us know how we should proceed, or if he has any information for us as to how to contact Col. O’Neill

Upgrades

Col. Jonathan J. O’Neill
Team Leader, SG-1
Cheyenne Mountain

Ryan O’Malley, owner
O'Malley’s Bar & Grill

I am writing this follow up to our recent phone chat to thank you for your kindness in lifting the ban on my teammates, Maj. Samantha Carter and Dr. Daniel Jackson, at your fine establishment. I assure you again that they will be no trouble, and that the brawl that caused your manager to put the ban in place was my fault. They were simply following my lead. I will sleep better out in the field knowing that my team members will not need to be plotting their revenge for my actions that led to them being banned from the source of the best steaks in town. As for myself, I suppose I shall have to bear up manfully, and console myself with the knowledge that in a year, if I promise to behave, and I do, I will once again be able to enjoy your fine cuisine.

Sincerely and gratefully,
Jack O’Neill

The Light

Brinton J. Sanford
Case Agent
Internal Revenue Service

04/25/2000

Dear Major Carter

In light of your service to our country and the information provided by your General Hammond that you were unavoidably and unexpectedly detained out of the country during the weeks immediately before and the week of April 15th of this year, I will be granting you a waiver of the penalty associated with failing to file your income taxes in a timely manner. Please be aware that failure to file taxes is a serious matter, and that should you fail to file your taxes on time in subsequent years, the Internal Revenue Service might not be as forgiving a second time.

Sincerely,
Brinton J. Stanford
Case Agent

Ascension

International Male
Customer Service Department
55 Pine Parkway
Prosperity Industrial Park
Las Vegas, Nevada

To Whom It May Concern:

Do not be concerned. I do not wish to complain. Instead I am writing to express my satisfaction with the garments I have received from your company. I find them to be fitting garments for a warrior to wear while indulging in relaxation and mingling with the citizens of your country. They show the intention to showcase the form of the body and its degree of fitness that a warrior should endeavor to display at all times. I find that people’s eyes are drawn to me when I walk the streets attired in your fashions.
I am indeed a satisfied customer.

Sincerely,
Mr. Murray Teal’c, First Prime, Retired


Meridian

Dear Jack,

I can hear you now – “You never call, you seldom write” – and this is early for my usual Christmas card, but I read Daniel Jackson’s obituary in this morning’s paper with deep regret. It said that he died after a short illness. These days when the obituary is for someone still so young, that’s usually code for a drug overdose, but I refuse to believe that of him. He came to my house – did you know? – after that incident at the hospital with the boy that looked so much like Charlie, and he tried, without making anything any clearer, I’m afraid, to explain it. Still, he was earnest and he was kind.

I know you must be hurting, Jack, and I have no illusions that I will be the one that you turn to in your pain. Talk to somebody, Jack, please. A doctor, a priest, a dog. Charlie used to tell Bouncer all his troubles, the ones that he couldn’t tell us, and I think I know who he learned that from. You love dogs, Jack. Get a dog.

Yours,
Sara

Smoke and Mirrors

Yes, Mrs. Pruitt, it was indeed me you saw on the wanted poster on TV.

No, you don’t live next to a dangerous assassin.

Do I LOOK like a dangerous assassin?

Bad question.

Look, Kinsey’s a head case and I wouldn’t vote for him if you paid me,
but I never attempted to off him.

My commanding officer is trying to get a tape of the Senator’s news
conference, and when he does, you will be able to see me standing right behind
Senator Kinsey. He even thanks me for my part in the whole scheme.

NOW WILL YOU STOP SENDING YOUR DOG TO POOP ON MY LAWN?

I’m in the Air Force. I’m one of the good guys!

Jack O’Neill


Paradise Lost

While You Were Out:
Recipient: Col. O’Neill
Caller: Kelton Valley Veterinary Services

When Harold Maybourne left his Shepard cross dog with us for boarding he said that you would pick it up after two weeks, and would settle his bill. It has been two and a half weeks, and expenses are mounting. Please make arrangements with us within two days, or unfortunately we will be forced to relegate the animal to the local shelter.

Homecoming


Pasquale D’Abruzzo
Manager
Garden Gate Apartment Complex
1432 Pinion Pine Way
Colorado Springs, CO

Dear Sir,

To review, yes, I was declared dead one year ago. I work for a military project, and my team had every reason to believe that they had seen me die. I was therefore declared dead.

It is quite evident, however, that they were, in fact mistaken. If my presence at your office and my ability to walk around apartment 32B without drifting through any floors or walls was not convincing enough evidence of that fact, I am quite frankly at a loss as to what will convince you.

I have spent the last three weeks living in office space tunneled out of the rock below Cheyenne mountain and sleeping on my office couch, when I haven’t fallen asleep on the paperwork, in triplicate and quadruplicate mind you, necessary to convince the Air Force, the I.R.S., the credit card companies, my bank, the Colorado Springs Library system, and the Highway My Way Storage Company that I have returned, I am not dead, and I expect to resume my life.

Your failure to recognize my plainly evident reality is in fact not helping. I don’t, quite frankly, care what the obituary said. I’m here, my bank account has ample funds, and my credit card has a limit greater than six month’s rent. I want, no I need to be able to spend time living above ground.

Please, please call me at the number I gave you, give the operator my name, and tell me you will rent me that apartment.

Sincerely,
Daniel Jackson, PhD.


Heroes

Oh, my poor, dear Cassandra.

I read with great consternation today that your mother has passed. I remember her well from your parent-teacher conferences, as well as her helpful and informative talk to your class on Career Day. Your mother was a warm woman, so I have no doubt that she left you in any confusion about whether she loved you. Sometimes I had a chance to watch her watching you when you were busy with your classmates and had not yet noticed she was even there, and the pride and joy in her eyes was breath taking.

It seems unfair to be losing your mother at such a tender age, and if I can be of any help to you in any way, please do not hesitate to let me know. Any child that has been in my class, my dear, is one of mine, and the membership is for a lifetime. You will always have a cheering section in me.

Love,
Valarie Struble


Dear Mrs. Struble,

Your note reached me here in Cheyenne Mountain, where I have been staying until I can decide where I want to go from here. I thank you for your kind words. It really touched my heart that you consider me one of your own and were thinking of me so long after I graduated from your classroom.

Uncle Jack says to say “Hi!” Actually he said “Buon giorno!” in a really cheesy fake Italian accent. I’m just translating.

I don’t want you to worry about me. Mom made arrangements, and Sam – you probably remember her coming to talk about the importance of math and science on Career Day – and Uncle Jack are going to be my guardians. My Cheyenne Mountain family will be sure I am well taken care of, no matter what.

Love,
Cass

Fragile Balance

Dear Daniel,

High school sucks. I don’t know how I forgot that, but I’m finding it sucks extra when I’m surrounded by pretty young things that make me feel like a lecher and a pedophile when things go beyond – Well, you know. The young knees are nice though, so there’s that.

Anyway, I didn’t write to whine. I just thought I should tell you I’m outta here. Done. Movin’ on.

The Air Force is probably not going to be thrilled when they discover I’m wandering around without them and with all their precious secrets still sitting in my head, but I guess they are going to have to manage with just the other version.

He’s going to be pretty pissy about it too. So go ahead and tell him I’m having a ton of fun. Then run and hide behind Teal’c.

So Long,
Jon O’Neill


New Order

Internal Memo
From: Parking Enforcement
To: Brig. Gen. Jack O’Neill, S.G.C.

Message:
The repainting was done today, and we have every reason to believe that your new parking space under the roof near the entrance door will be available by the time you report for duty tomorrow morning. Congratulations on the promotion sir, and we look forward to working with you for many years to come.

Affinity

Dear Mr. Teal’c,

Enclosed please find a check for the amount of your damage deposit and the last month’s rent that you gave us when you moved in. We are sorry that you have been transferred and can no longer be our tenant. The other tenants spoke favorably about you. They said you made them feel safe.


Full Alert

Dear Mrs. Kinsey,

You may not remember me. I attended a gathering that you and the Senator hosted a few years ago. I doubt you would have noted anything about me, except that we were casually dressed, while the rest of the guests were properly and formally attired. You were introduced to me as Mr. Starsky. I remember your dog, Oscar, with great fondness.

I am writing to express my condolences on the death of Senator Kinsey. While the Senator and I disagreed vehemently on politics and the proper path for our country, you were a gracious hostess, and I know that he will be missed very much on the home front.

Sincerely,
Jack O’Neill


The Fourth Horseman

Internal Memo
From: Dr. Brightman
To: General Landry

Message:

Regrettably, I feel that we have done all that can be done for Orlin here in the infirmary. We have neither the experience nor the personnel to be able to deal with all his needs. It seems unlikely that he will ever be able to care for himself without significant help. I have talked with a Dr. Lenormand at Colorado Springs Rehabilitation Hospital, and they seem like a reasonable place for him, with plenty of occupational therapy and a good reputation for patient care. They are willing to take him. Please advise.


Uninvited

Dear Martha,

I was horrified to learn from my friend General Landry that Bobby was one of the hunters that was killed when an animal attacked several people out in the woods near my cabin. He was out there to play poker with me, Gus Stokes, and the Nilssen brothers the last time I was at my cabin.

You know, I won a good deal of money off Bobby through the years, and he won a lesser amount off me, and I’m feeling just a might guilty about that at the moment. Bobby was a good loser and a kind winner, and our games just won’t be the same without him.

I know a note like this is supposed to be hand written, and mailed with a stamp, but when I was thinking about Bobby and our games, I was remembering the way he had three things he brought up each and every time he had a chance, and that was his beautiful wife, his two wonderful little girls, and his plan for fixing up that rusty old mustang you have out in your barn, and how he was going to get it all ship-shape and shiny and drive you and the girls around in it. Well, I can’t do anything to bring Bobby back, but I can give you the ride he wanted you to have.

The man who handed you this letter is Lt. Col. Cameron Mitchell, and the sweet ride he drove up in is a classic Mustang. He says he’d be honored to take you and the girls for a ride about town, just like Bobby always wanted to do.

Enjoy the ride and the wind in your hair, and if you or the girls need something, you remember my guilty conscience and let me know, okay? Mitchell’s got my card, and if you let my secretary know who you are, she’ll put you right through, unless I’m on the line with Hayes. Doesn’t do to put the Commander-in-Chief on hold.

My heartfelt condolences,
and hug those girls for me,

Jack O’Neill


Unending

O’Neill-

I am informed that you will be here at the S.G.C. next week. It will be good to see you, my brother. We have both been busy, and it has been too long, longer for me than it has been for you. I am sure that Col. Carter will have written a comprehensive account of the troubles that we encountered during our last mission, and how it was necessary for me to remain as the sole person aboard our ship that lived through and remembers the fifty years that we spent on it before she figured out how to send us home. As a result, you will find me somewhat changed, particularly as my temples are now quite white. Do not concern yourself. I can still defeat you at boxing.

There is another troubling matter that I feel I must share with you. You will be distressed to learn that Thor and all of his race have perished, of their own hands. They were facing degeneration, and did not wish to experience that. They chose to go in their strength.

Thor did not leave a message to you, but Col. Carter feels that this was an oversight, due to the fact that so much needed to be done so that the Asgards’ legacy could be secured and linked with our systems.

We have all agreed that it would be best if the rest remained ignorant of the events that we experienced together during the fifty years we were trapped on the ship together. Although it was and still is my reality, it was no one else’s. Do not ask. I shall not answer.
-Teal’c



An Undated 3x5 Card

Thanks, General, for the new wrench.
I swear she’s even bigger than old Rita.
And thanks for letting me put what was
left of Rita through the Gate. It was fitting.

Sgt. Siler

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T is for Twitter
by [profile] antonomasia09



















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U is for Unremembered
by [personal profile] sallymn

Doctor Jackson...

I sat down to write something... anything... to you, and this -
................. is the first thing that came from my mind. Or my soul. Neither of which, I have to say, anyone seems to understand right now.

Jim Mac (no that's wrong, he says to call him Jack, but he looks like a Mac to me, which makes the Major laugh when I told, I don't know why, any more than why I know it annoys him when I say Jim...) Jack says you know a crapload (his word, I asked the General what it meant but I guess you already know) of languages and it's one of the oldest.
He says you knew it when you were four. The Major says he's exaggerating, you were probably seven. They neither of them knew what it means, I don't know why I did, or why I know it will hurt them if I tell them.

It means 'forget', in case you've, well, forgotten. Which of course you have....

Doctor Jackson...

That is, I think, what I should call you right now, Doctor Jackson.

Doctor Daniel Jackson.

Doctor Daniel Jackson, PhD by three. Please don't let anyone ask me what a PhD is, let alone why it's impressive having three of them, but it is. Evidently it means you are very bright: at least (as Jim Mac Jack says, bright on paper. No, he hasn't actually said so, but you and I both know he would, even if I don't know why I would know that. I just do, probably because you do, or did.

Do.

Which is it, Doctor Jackson?

I think you're the one I need to tell... all this, all that I can tell no one else. Even though you won't read it. You can't, you won't need to. One of the two.

I'm not feeling very bright now.

I'm starting to realize just how much you knew and I don't. It's terrifying frightening worrying, and I can't tell the others - Jack, the Major Sam and Teal'c (I know how to spell that. Why do I know how to spell that?), the little Doctor with her million and three tests and her ally That Psychologist (who only seems to come round when Jack is somewhere else, though no one will tell me why), the General - any of them. They don't want me to be worried, it worries them because they're so worried that they won't get you back, that they'll be stuck with me. They don't say so, but even though I don't know them, I seem to know them well enough to know that.

I seem to know a lot more than I think I do.

I also know a crapload (not a good word, but Jim Mac Jack likes it a lot) of words. For instance, that word for forget. Without the slightest effort I can think of over two hundred others in who knows how many languages. I'm not sure why it is important that I know them, or that I need to be reminded of them, reminded to forget.
I think that there's someone who still wants me to forget. Maybe it's this Oma Desala everyone talks about, in a complicated, not quite hostile (because she saved you, didn't she?) but not quite friendly way. Or maybe it's the others everyone calls 'Ascended' who might have been the ones who sent me back instead.

Maybe it is.

But I think, Doctor Jackson, it might actually be you.

Doctor Jackson...

I've been reading your diaries. Someone else wrote in them - in ink - and in some of your books. Your all team looked... weird when I asked them who did it, but I really don't think it was any of them. They're not that stupid, are they?

I may have forgotten everything, but the part of me that is you knows that if and when you find out, that someone else is going to be in one of Jack's craploads of trouble. Not just for the writing in them - though we both know there's no forgiving for that! - but because that that someone else, who wasn't at least Jack, or Sam, or Teal'c, read your diaries. You won't like that.

Being very bright, you wrote the private notes in other languages. I know that, though I don't know what languages they are. But whoever that someone else was, from what I've been told of the earth and alien languages you read and write, it's unlikely he or anyone else could read all of them.

You wrote about your wife in what I think is Abydonian, and about Robert's death in what I've worked out is Hieratic (I don't know who Robert is, or why I shouldn't talk about him, and definitely not to Jack). You wrote personal notes in what looks like a mishmash of scripts and dialects and idioms. But about your friends - your team - your highs and those all too many lows just before you died... I have no idea what language it is or why I can read it and no one else can, but I'll keep it secret. Because I don't think you want them to really know how bad things were, with the failures, and the anger, and the stumbling, and the... everything closing in. And if you don't want that, it stands to reason I don't either.

Is how bad things what you might have wanted me to forget?

Somehow, I don't think I should ask anyone else.


Doctor Jackson...

Seriously, Doctor Jackson.

Whatever else you forgot - your work, your beloved history, your languages, the Stargate, the missions, the aliens, the joy and the grief, the fighting, even the meaning of life, the Universe and (Ascendedly) everything... how could you forget coffee???


Doctor Jackson...

They are trying, I'll give them that. Jack, and Sam and Teal'c, and the General and everyone. They try not to make it quite as obvious as it is that they want you back instead of the not-you they have in me.

They fail so badly, I'm beginning to find it hilarious.

Jack hovers, and makes bad jokes, and cares so much and hides it so desperately and so badly. I read about your fights before you died (and oh, I can't talk about that, they all flinch so hard when your - our - death comes up, I think I'm the only one doesn't, though maybe that's just because I've forgotten what it felt like. Very very bad, I believe). You weren't much good for each other at the end, were you? - and he knows that, it's hurting him, and I don't know him well enough to help him work out how to good again when - if - he gets you back.

Sam loved you, and wants to love whatever's left of you. She looks at me all too often with a brave, very fake smile and way too much uncomfortable emotion lurking in her eyes. She keeps wanting to tell me how brilliant and compassionate and brave and unbelievably wonderful you were and I will be, as if saying the words often enough will somehow make it happen, but I'm pretty sure neither of us were that wonderful even on our best days.

Teal'c says nothing, and says it as loudly as the Stargate's alarm going triple strength. He clearly feels he has a debt to you, I don't think I want to know why, and treats me like I was made of glass. I think, for him, I am the fragile container of your soul... and he doesn't want to hurt me or lose you while he still owes that debt.

The little Doctor... one more test, I swear, and we'll both find out how many obscenities we both know in however many languages we have to know them in. Though I can see, it's because she feels guilty too, for her it's because she couldn't save you and can't make me better. Better, of course, being you. Don't worry, I'm not offended by this, though there are times, in the night, after reading your diaries or just dreaming, I'm not sure you or I really want to be you again. I don't think she'd want to hear that, though.

The General tries to give me space, and tries to order everyone else to as well. I'm pretty sure he knows just how well that order is not being followed.

The canteen seem to have discovered a way to put this stuff called 'chocolate' in every single dish they offer me, and I don't think it's coincidence. The archeological staff pile my desk with finds and papers and treasures, very one not-so-subtly picked to poke at a memory I don't have. The soldiers, even less subtly, find any excuse to reminisce about the places they've been and the things you did there.

I can't blame them, I don't, and I know it's wrong but... but I'm not yet ready to tell them I wake up with bits of your life, your memories creeping back every day. Maybe I need you to tell them for me, when and - if¬ you ever can.


Doctor Jackson...

I yelled at the Doctor and her collaborator Psychologist today. She seems to think that either you're hiding behind the amnesia - that your big, bright, pre-ascended brain is choosing to forget - and he thinks I'm an empty slate, you are totally lost and we'll never get any real memories back. They mean well, and they push hard. They both think I'm being difficult, obstructionist and evasive and don't trust the military with my big, blank, ex-ascended brain.

Well, of course I don't. As the saying goes (no, I don't recall where you heard it) the philosopher who said "know thyself" should have added "but don't tell anyone." Especially when the philosopher's forgotten how much of "thyself" he knew in the first place.

So I yelled at them, snapped at everyone who tried to help, and made sure no one got a hint that your memories may be coming back, at least the all too human ones. And if and when they do, you can deal with the questions about what there is inbetween 'pre' and 'ex'.

Good luck with that, Doctor Jackson. You'll need it.

If I were you (and yeah, I know how that sounds), that's something I'd choose to stay forgotten.

Doctor Jackson...

I dreamed of you - well, you and Oma last night. In the dream, you understood why you had to forget, not just the Ascended knowledge, but everything that made you... you. And you weren't happy about it, but you still promised her that you wouldn't tell anyone.

I'm not sure how I feel about that. It could mean something. It could mean you're coming back. Or it could just be the result of going to the canteen after a long day learning about you... and too much chocolate after midnight.

But does that anyone include yourself, Doctor Jackson?

Maybe you still want me to forget... and maybe we neither of us have a choice.

Doctor Jackson...

So now it's official. I am Doctor Daniel Jackson of SG-1. Or the nearest thing they've got.

We're off on my first (and maybe last, whichever way it goes) all-too-likely-to-end-up-as-crap mission tomorrow.

I gather that there's a good chance we'll all die, and I gather that isn't unusual. I'm not sure if I should call it the first time (because I've forgotten the others) or, I'm not sure, the twenty-fifth? (Sam could probably calculate the number) because no one else has forgotten.

I'm writing this tonight, but I'll get rid of it, all my unread notes to you, before we leave. I really wouldn't want anyone but you to read them, not even Jack (he still looks like a Jim or a Mac, did you ever think that?). And if and when you stop forgetting, unless you then forget me, you shouldn't need to.

Jack and Sam have tried to tell me, in her case at quite daunting length, what our missions could be like (though Jack says she talked far less than you would have, that can't be true can it?) and the impression I get is that we make it up as we go along, you as much as anyone, and therefore me as much as anyone.

If it all works out, I like to think it's safe for you to come back. More bits of your memories are falling into place every day, so you may as well anyway. I don't know why you had to forget, but you do, and you seem to be finding a way around it. I think that's probably better for everyone, even.... us.

I could be wrong, though.

Oh, and Daniel...

One last thing. It may not be time, we may neither of us be ready, but do it anyway.

................. which means 'remember'.

We know a crapload of words for that as well.

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V is for Vellum
by [personal profile] magibrain

Excitement, in a physiological sense, was as distant a historical genetic curiosity to Heimdall as gestative reproduction was, but he had to admit a pleasant sense of anticipation at his return to Ida, to Othalla, to his accustomed lab. Here, significantly closer to the main research efforts, he could do much more with less delay – though with the tide of the Replicator containment effort turning in their favor at last, perhaps that delay would have been shorter in any case. Asgard ships moved much more freely, at least for a time.

Humans were, Heimdall reflected, rather more useful allies than most Asgard had foreseen.

He was directing the installation of the recovered stasis pod when he had an unexpected visitor in the form of Freyr. That was cause to pause a moment.

"I had expected you would have duties on the High Council," Heimdall said.

"The Council is in recess," Freyr told him, and walked into the room, examining the environs with what looked like suspicion. Heimdall let him; he took a walking circuit of the room, at last stopping before one of the containment clusters and returning his attention to the scientist. "Tell me, Heimdall, have you made any progress on this issue, or is our ancestor to become simply the most significant addition to your hall of historical curiosities?"

Heimdall regarded him. The controlled mutations in their genome manifested in such strange and curious ways, sometimes – his own significantly divergent voice, Freyr's tendency toward cynicism. That faint pessimistic outlook made him a conservative military commander – adaptive, in its way.

Still. He missed much of the... wonder that Heimdall could see. He was not temperamentally suited to the sciences, as Heimdall was.

Heimdall walked to one of the smaller containment pods, and set the casing to transparency. "Do you know what this is?"

Freyr approached, and narrowed his eyes at the case. "No."

"It is a communication," Heimdall said. "A sequence of communications on a static medium between two distant ancestors. The topic – fittingly – is their mutual desire to create a sexually reproductive relationship. To our ancestors, this was a topic about which much negotiation had to be performed."

Freyr's dubious look turned to Heimdall. "Surely such cultural data is of no use to you."

"No use," Heimdall agreed, "though I must admit my interest. It is in my collection for a different reason."

Freyr inclined his head.

"The material," Heimdall said. "In ancient times, it was called vellum. It is the denatured skin of an animal."

Freyr took a small step back, clearly repulsed. "I had forgotten," he said, with the tone of one who wasn't grateful to be reminded, "how appalling even our own ancestors had been."

Heimdall brushed off his reaction. "However distasteful the material, the skin originated from an animal which shared our evolutionary context," he said. "And the communication passed between these two individuals many times, from one hand to another."

That enlightened Freyr. He turned to regard Heimdall evenly. "Surely any DNA from either source would be degraded beyond recovery."

"Degraded, yes," Heimdall said. "Beyond recovery? Perhaps. It is true, our current technology cannot extrapolate the DNA sequences from what remains. However, my colleagues in the science of scanning technology are... investigating solutions."

"Improbable," Freyr pronounced. "I have been informed of a number of attempts to reverse our genetic decline. This is perhaps the most improbable yet."

"Improbable," Heimdall agreed. "Not impossible. Given the scope of the issue, I have chosen not to reject any solution with a nonzero possibility of success. Although I prioritize–" he turned to look at the ancient Asgard body, safe for now in its suspension pod, "–those avenues where solutions seem more probable."

"Yes." Freyr looked at Heimdall carefully. "One thing concerns me."

Heimdall tilted his head.

"All the solutions currently prioritized by the High Council," he said, nodding to the ancestor, to the vellum. "They fixate on the past. Even the controlled mutation project has been deprecated in favor of your work and your colleagues'."

"We must prioritize our resources," Heimdall said. "This offers our greatest chance of success."

Freyr was silent for a moment. Then, he said, "Perhaps."

"You disagree?"

"I am concerned that, with all this exclusive attention paid to past times, our species may forget it has a future."

Heimdall said nothing to that.

After a moment, Freyr looked at the tall ancestral body in its pod, and glanced at the container holding the ancient vellum preserved, and then turned, and left Heimdall to his history.

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W is for Words of Woe
by [personal profile] eilidh17

"Yes, sir. And it'd be illegal if he lived in New Orleans!"

"You're on dangerous ground, Major."

Not that he would ever say it out loud, and especially not in current company, but Major Stan Kovacek hardly gave a damn what ground he was standing on right now. He was tired, his team had only been Earth-side for a few hours after a particularly difficult mission, and instead of heading home after being cleared by the infirmary staff, he was locked in General Hammond's office trying to pull SG-1 back from the edge of a diplomatic crisis.

"With due respect, sir, I've worked my way through just about every obscure law in all fifty states and there is nothing written or implied that even comes close to the kind of escape clause you're looking for."

"Except for New Orleans," General Hammond said in a clearly un-amused tone, sliding his gaze between Kovacek and Doctor Daniel Jackson, who was working real hard at trying to look serious.

Kovacek continued on, "State law holds no jurisdiction where a crime is committed by one of its citizens outside of its territorial border. The Stargate program, simply by the uniqueness under which it operates, barely comes under the federal umbrella when it comes to laws and lawmaking."

"Which was why the process of creating laws and due process specific to the program was given to the Pentagon and not the relevant houses of congress?" asked Daniel.

"Right."

"We are talking laws specific to the Stargate program?" asked Hammond.

"Yes, sir."

"So, let me guess....." Daniel raised a finger in front of his face and briefly closed his yes. "All the best legal minds at the Pentagon couldn't predict this type of scenario?"

"I don't see how anyone could." The idea that there might be some Pentagon think tank spending an inordinate amount of time coming up with ridiculous scenarios just to write up laws to cover them had already consumed too much of Kovacek's time. And yet....

"Okay, gentlemen, what are we left with here?"

Daniel and Kovacek exchanged blank stares, before Kovacek went back to examining his briefing notes. "I don't know, sir," he said after a moment. "All documents created for use between Earth and potential treaty or trade partners are considered legal under both our laws and the laws of the other involved party. This means that Colonel O'Neill automatically subjected himself to whatever laws protected the document. This is exactly the reason why so much time goes into the language of a document before both parties are brought to the table for the final signing."

Daniel rose his hand. "Ah, that would be where I come in."

"Son?"

"My linguists and I spent weeks with the base legal team and the Khanar political delegates going over the language and format of the final treaty, taking into account the unusual possessive nature of the Khanar, especially when it comes to ownership."

"The Khanar believe in equal trading rights between partners, which is not that much different than how most enlightened societies work here," added Kovacek.

"Except their brand of treaty ratification also involved the handing over of more than just minerals and plant extracts," Daniel added hastily, avoiding looking through the window in Hammond's office to the briefing room beyond, to where the rest of his team looked on in expectation. "Look, sir, to be fair, this isn't exactly Jack's fault."

"I thought he signed the document without you verifying the changes the Khanar made?"

"No. Well, yes, he did exactly that, despite my insistence that we needed to call a halt to proceedings so I could clarify those changes before he signed off on them. The Khanar signatories were at odds with some of the wording choices we made, even though they stood to gain far more than we did once the treaty was ratified. Unfortunately, Jack somehow took their body language as a sign that they approved of what we were offering them."

"When instead they weren't happy with the arrangements?"

"Oh, no, they were happy. They just wanted to... ah, add a little something more into the deal to ensure we wouldn't go back on the treaty any time in the future. Call it old-fashioned, but the notion of forming trading or even territorial alliances through the marriage of heads of state, most often local royalty, is still alive and well in some places here on Earth. There's no reason why it shouldn't exist out there." He gestured to the wall behind Hammond's desk, beyond which was the Stargate.

"And Colonel O'Neill signing the amended treaty without your approval--"

"Left him with a dozen wives, all daughters of the ruling heads of Khanar, which is made up of approximately ten states. Each state is ruled independently, but global decisions are decided upon as a whole. "

"How does that add up to 12?"

"The oldest daughters of two of those heads of states are sets of twins, so..."

If Hammond was even the slightest bit amused, it didn't show. He turned his attention back to Kovacek. "Tell me, Major, how does all this relate to New Orleans?"

"Well, sir. The heads of each state are also the only people on Khanar legally able to perform marriages."

"And?"

"They're all mystics. New Orleans passed a law that made it illegal for palm readers, mystics and fortune tellers to perform wedding ceremonies."

"I thought you said our laws don't apply in this situation?"

"I did, sir, and they don't."

"Grasping at straws, son?"

"You have no idea."

Hammond rose from his chair and opened the door to the briefing room. "Colonel O'Neill! My office... now!"

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X is for X-Box
by [personal profile] goddess47

Jack O'Neill sighed. He was bored, bored, bored. So bored.

He lay his head back on the bed pillows. He was tired. And bored. The only good news -- and it was all relative -- was that he was allowed to be out of the infirmary, even if he couldn't yet leave the SGC. His broken ankle didn't need constant medical supervision but he and Dr. Lam both knew he'd do too much if he went home. At least this bed was more comfortable, and he got to wear real clothes instead of a hospital gown.

He looked at the screen of the laptop where he was writing the AAR for the mission. The screen saver had come up. Again. The SGC symbol swirled mockingly on the screen.

"There has to be some way to get the MALP to test for xenophobia," Jack groused, stabbing at the keys of the keyboard to bring the report he had been working on back.

"Hey! Easy on the keyboard!" Daniel protested as he walked into the room. "If you break it, you have to explain to Siler why you need a new one."

Jack leaned back, pushing the laptop toward Daniel. "You probably should write it up, anyway." Jack gestured at the cast on his leg. "I was unconscious for most of it."

Daniel held up a hand. "You'd never let anyone else out of it," he pointed out. Completely unreasonably, Jack thought.

"Dann-ny..." Jack whined. He tried to look pathetic.

"No, Jack," Daniel said firmly.

Jack sighed dramatically. "Okay, I guess," Jack said.

Daniel pulled out a slim case from his messenger bag and waggled it about. "Finish the report and we can play!"

"LEGO Jurassic World? Sweet!" Jack's eyes lit up a the X-Box game. He held out a hand and made gimme motions.

"You have to finish the mission report first." Daniel moved the case further out of reach. "You're the only one who hasn't written their part."

Jack frowned. "Even Teal'c?" Teal's detested writing mission reports.

"Yes, even Teal'c is done." Daniel grinned.

"Damn." Jack sighed.

"Write fast!" Daniel wiggled the game, like a prize.

"All right, all right." Jack pulled the laptop toward him. He actually had most of the report written, he just needed to proof-read it and send it in.

"Want something to drink? Or a snack?" Daniel asked. "I'll go get it."

"Coffee, I guess," Jack requested. Then brightened. "Pie, if there's any this time of day!"

"Be right back." Daniel wandered out of the room. He took the game with him, Jack noted.

Jack focused on the report and hit Send just as Daniel came back with a tray. There was a large carafe, mugs, a plate of cookies and -- bonus! -- blueberry pie.

"Done!" Jack reported, pointing to the computer.

Daniel poured them both coffee, and handed Jack his pie. As Jack snitched a cookie off the plate, Daniel set up the X-Box. He handed Jack one of the controllers.

"Let's get us some Velociraptors!" Daniel said, settling into the chair next to Jack's bed.

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Y is for Yesterday and Tomorrow
by [profile] annieb1955

Jack finds the letters again quite by accident one day when he’s moving boxes around in the attic with the full intention of getting rid of all the detritus of his previous life that he no longer needs. Intention is one thing though and action another and as he looks around the attic to take stock of his progress he’s made painfully aware that the “dump pile” is still significantly smaller than the “keep pile”. He grins as he remembers his teasing Daniel about a tendency towards hoarding when Catherine Langford died and left her not inconsiderable collection of artifacts to Daniel. “You’d have a field day teasing me back if you could see this now, Daniel,” he says out loud then urges himself mentally to be a little stricter about what he actually *needs* to keep rather than what he *wants* to keep. But then he opens just one more box before consigning the rest of the clearing out to the next morning or more likely maybe the next week and he finds the letters. They’re wrapped in a neat pile with a heavy elastic band. The pages are yellowed and ever so faintly musty and for a moment he can’t believe he’d forgotten about them but then he reminds himself that he forgets more than he remembers these days. On that note, he decides that rereading them now will be like reading them for the very first time, and his back and knees are aching and he really could use a beer so he picks up the letters and leaves the “to dump pile” and the “to keep pile” and the myriad still to be explored boxes behind for now and makes his way carefully down the steps to the kitchen.

Daniel had started writing letters to him whenever circumstances kept them apart for a long stretch of time. He’d given the first batch to Jack when they’d arrived back on Earth after returning from Chulak, leaving Sha’re and Skaa’ra missing in the vastness of the galaxy. Jack had asked him, with a small grin, why the hell he’d chosen to write letters he couldn’t post to a man he wasn’t even sure of seeing again and Daniel had replied that it had been a way of helping him to stay connected to normalcy. Writing was a big part of his work, had been for years, and writing to Jack had seemed somehow more comforting when he was in the early, unsure days of his life on Abydos than writing in a diary would have been. Jack had known even in those early days of their friendship that Daniel didn’t exactly have a lot of friends or family to keep in touch with.

Jack sits down at the table after pulling a beer from the fridge. He checks the time and decides he has plenty of time to do a little reading and reminiscing before his company arrives. He removes the band on the first batch of letters and opens the first one, smoothing out the yellow notebook paper. Daniel had told him he’d actually rationed his notebooks and when he inevitably ran out of those he used the blank pages of the books he’d carted across the galaxy with him. When his pens ran out, he made ink from a beet like plant on the planet and fashioned quills from the chicken-like animals the Abydonians raised. That referencing memory made Jack laugh out loud but he pushed the memories of being on Abydos the first time to the back of his mind for now and focused on the letter.

Dear Jack

Well, it’s been a couple of days since you and Feretti and the other guys left Abydos and I’m still having a little trouble believing I’m here for good. Don’t get me wrong! There’s nowhere else I want to be but while as an archaeologist I was used to traveling all over the world, I never expected to find myself across the other side of the known galaxy! It’s kind of daunting in a way knowing that this is my life now, that there’s no going back to Earth and my old life even if I wanted to.

The people here have been nothing but kind and welcoming and Sha’re gets more beautiful with every day we’re together. Skaara keeps us all laughing with his antics and the tricks he plays on everyone (especially on me). Kasuf is kind of like the father I never really had. He insists I call him ‘good father’, which is considered a high honor among Abydonians to allow such a liberty to a stranger so you can tell I’m in good hands and finally have the family I always really wanted. Hopefully in the not too distant future Sha’re and I will have children of our own too and that will make me feel as Abydonian as if I’d been born here. Sha’re says if we have a boy we will name him “Jack” because not only did you save her people from slavery but you brought me to her from beyond the stars. Yeah, Jack, I can hear you laughing as you read that.

Anyway, I have no way to send these to you. Pretty sure there’s no intergalactic postal service on Abydos but hey, when I write to you I feel as though my connection with Earth isn’t completely severed and it’s kinda cool for a nerd like me to be writing to a tough guy like you, and feeling like we’re friends. We are, aren’t we?

Sha’re’s calling me. She’s going to teach me to grind flour. I hope they’re not relying on me to keep the village in flour. We’ll all starve at that rate. Gotta go, Jack. You know what they say, “Happy wife, happy life”.

Oh, I found something really cool this morning but I’ll tell you about that next time I write.

Bye
Daniel


Of course once Jack led the first mission back to Abydos they soon found out what the something cool was. Daniel’s discovery that there were possibly hundreds of stargates linked throughout the known galaxy and maybe even beyond had changed both his and Jack’s lives forever. It had also led to Daniel losing both Sha’re and any chance of having those children with her that he’d seem to want so much. Jack tamps down the guilt he still feels over that. If only they hadn’t gone back to Abydos, if only, if only… He folds the letter up carefully and puts it to one side. His life is made up of too many if onlys and Carter would tell him there’s a reason for that if she was here. All those parallel and alternate universes… He’d been kinda happy to know that at least one of them included him living a life on the seas, as a charter boat captain.

He makes himself a grilled cheese sandwich and grabs a bag of chips and a second beer to accompany it then sits down at the table again and pulls out another letter, at random this time. He opens it up, smooths the pages and reads the opening lines. Ah yes, he remembers this one and the reason for it only too well. It’s the one he both hates and loves to remember.

Dear Jack

This is probably the hardest letter I’ve ever written to anyone. Don’t think there’s gonna be any miracle pulling me back from the brink of death this time. And to be honest the pain’s enough even now that I don’t think I want there to be. I’m tired and I want nothing more than to just sleep.

This is a letter to say the things you and I never seem to say to each other. Either there’s never enough time or the time isn’t right or maybe it’s just that you and I aren’t the sort of people who say these kinds of things to each other, at least not out loud.

You’re my best friend, Jack. I think you know that already but what you might not know is how much this friendship of ours, as rough and bumpy as it’s been at times, has changed my life and my world. I’m a different man from the one you met all those years ago when I was just that annoying geek trying to translate that tablet and open the stargate. You’ve let me see wonders I’d never have believed could exist, you’ve saved me and helped me save others from unimaginable evil, you’ve been there for me when I felt I had no one left in the world who cared about me. You’ve been my friend and I just want to say thank you.


The last line is smudged with what Jack thinks are tearstains and he traces the line gently with his finger then takes a hearty swig of his beer and pushes the letter to one side. You were the one who saved me, Daniel, he thinks. Over and over again, when even I’d given up on myself.
He gives himself a firm inward shake and reminds himself that Daniel did come back. Yes, he’d ascended for a time and Jack had missed him fiercely but somehow he’d always known Daniel was still out there just waiting for the right time to come home. “And you did that way too many times, Daniel,” he says out loud. “I’m surprised I didn’t keel over years ago from a heart attack with all the worry you put me through.”

He glances at the clock above the stove and realizes he’s wasted more time than he should have, sitting here reminiscing over the letters. He picks up the letters and folds them all and puts the rubber band back around them. He takes them into his bedroom and puts them in the top drawer of his bureau next to Charlie’s baseball cap and the last photo of him and Sara and Charlie together. He gives the letters a final pat. He’s got all the time in the world to read them again now, he tells himself but today he needs to get his skates on if he’s not going to be late. He gives a rueful grin at that and rolls his eyes as he imagines the bollocking he’ll cop from Carter if he’s even 5 minutes late for this occasion. Truth be told he’s not sure he even wants to go. It’s somehow too final for him. He’s not sure he wants to admit that after all this time it’s really over.

“It’s not really the end, you know.” The voice startles him and he only just pulls his fingers out of the way of the closing drawer when he jumps.

“Thanks, Daniel,” he grouses. “Almost lost a couple of fingers.”

“You must be slipping, Jack. I never used to be able to sneak up on you like that.” Daniel grins and Jack feels unaccountably annoyed that despite his now greying hair and a few extra wrinkles around his eyes, Daniel looks much the same as he has for the past twenty years.

“Yeah, well, just remember, everything you know about sneaking up on people you learned from me, big fella.” Jack grabs his suit from the closet and wiggles his fingers at Daniel. Go grab yourself a beer while you’re waiting for me. I got sidetracked cleaning out the attic.”

“You know, Sam’s gonna kill us if we’re late for this,” Daniel says.

“Yeah, yeah, I’ll be quick. Hey,” he calls out as he goes into the bathroom and turns on the shower, “when did she start thinking it was okay to start bossing me around. I used to be her boss, the man, the big cheese.”

“used to be being the operative words,” Daniel calls out over the noise of the water. “She’s a Colonel and you’re just a retired General now.”

“Good point,” Jack calls back.

A half hour later they’re in Daniel’s car on their way to the SGC.

“So,” Jack asks, “you ready for this?”

“Retirement?” Daniel replies. “Not really but I figure it’s time. There’s a lot I want to do and see while I’m still physically able and more or less mentally alert.”

“And there’s fishing,” Jack says hopefully.

“Yes, and there’s fishing,” Daniel says with a grin. “Do you like being retired?”

“Beats the hell out of almost being killed 5 days a week,” Jack says. “Or in your case, being killed. Hey, did we ever work out how many times you actually died?”

“Sam did once but I don’t remember now.”

Jack nods. “Yeah, not something I particularly like remembering either. So, what are your plans for your first day of retirement?”

“Well, you’ve practically ordered me to go fishing with you so I’ll start with that.” Daniel hands their IDs to the guard at the gate and they’re waved through. He finds his park and pulls the car in then turns and looks at Jack. “So fishing then a trip to Egypt, couple of dig sites I’ve been invited to look at.”

Jack nods. “Sounds good. Just don’t forget to write, okay?”

“Okay. Thanks, Jack. For everything.”

“Hey, this isn’t the end of anything, you know. It’s just another beginning.”
“I like the sound of that, Jack.”

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Z is for Zodiac
by [profile] madders_ahatter

Grunting, Daniel squinted against the bright light above his bed. He heard a rustling of paper.

“Hey, sunshine, you’re awake!” Jack’s cheery voice sounded way too loud.

“Jack?” Daniel forced his eyes into focus, but it made his head throb. He tried to raise his left arm to rub at his forehead, but found it tethered by an IV tube. His right was supported in a sling to protect his broken bones. The cast on his leg felt like it weighed a ton.

“How you doin?”

“Stupidest question in the world, Jack.” Daniel decided. “I’m on top of the world, can’t you tell?”

“Well, you should be,” Colonel O’Neill announced with a chuckle.

“How’d you figure that?” Daniel knew he was concussed, but he was pretty sure that getting trampled by a great hulking alien bullock wasn’t conducive to anyone’s wellbeing.

“Says so right here,” Jack held up the copy of the Sunday supplement he’d been reading while he waited for Daniel to come round.

“Huh?” SG-1 was a top-secret government taskforce, or so he thought. Since when did their exploits make the Sunday papers?

Jack tapped the horoscope section, turning it round for Daniel to read.

Daniel frowned.

“You are a Cancer, aren’t you? Zodiac sign for July 8th?”

Daniel nodded, but instantly regretted it.

“Well, there you are then.” Jack looked smug. “Right here, listen.” He turned it back so he could read aloud, “Cancer should be bold today. Take the bull by the horns and you’re bound to come out on top of the world.”

Daniel groaned, “I wish somebody had told the bull.”

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