Category: Slash, Drama, Romance, Missing Scene/Epilogue, Established Relationship
Pairing: Jack/Daniel ... and it's all J/D
Season: 2 - October 18, 1998
Spoilers: Thor's Chariot
Written: March 28,30-31, April 1-2,24-25,27, 2021
Summary: SG-1 returns to Cimmeria to set a wrong right
Disclaimer: Usual disclaimers -- not mine, wish they were, especially Daniel, and Jack, too, but they aren't. A gal can dream though!
1) Silent, unspoken thoughts by various characters are indicated with ~ in front and behind them, such as ~Where am I?~
2) This fic stands alone, but it does reference my other fic(s): "Developing Daniel" and "Rubber Duckies"
Eager for her scheduled demonstration to take place, Sam walked quickly down the corridor.
"Hey, Carter," Jack greeted.
"Hi, Sam," Daniel spoke with a smile.
"Wow, you two look happy," Sam observed from the happy expressions and carefree demeanor of her teammates.
"Good night," Jack explained simply as he led the way to their destination. "Rubber Ducky, joy of joys," he sing-songed.
Sam's eyes widened from the unusual song choice and the mere fact there was a song being sung at all. She glanced back at Daniel, who was about a foot behind her now, and noticed his arms folded across his chest, his head was lowered, and his face was beet red.
~Be quiet, Sam. You don't want to know,~ Sam told herself. She opted to say something guaranteed to change the subject. "I'm very excited about the new Seeker Project."
"Isn't that why we're going where we're going, for you to explain this new project of yours?" Jack asked.
"Carter, do you like Laurel and Hardy?"
"I've seen a few of their movies."
"You should see more. They're very funny."
"I'll rent a couple of movies the next time I have an evening free."
Jack nodded and kept walking.
Several minutes later and using a chart map in the control room, Sam began her demonstration to General Hammond and her teammates and stated, "P5C-629 is located directly in the corridor the Goa'ulds used to reach our solar system. This is our best platform for the Seeker Project. Now, the theory is that a Goa'uld ship of that magnitude should leave a footprint, even at thrust beyond light speed. So, we're using the technology we already possess. We can determine ..."
The blaring klaxons stopped Sam's words and instantly led to concern since none of the off-world teams were due back on this date.The iris was immediately closed as there was no identification as to who the incoming traveler was. In the control room, Hammond and SG-1 waited to see who or what would appear, only the Stargate shutdown without the appearance of friend or foe. Hammond ordered Sam to investigate and uncover any clue as to where the traveler was coming from. ==== "What do you think?" Daniel asked as he stood to Jack's left, the two staring out the large conference room window at the Stargate. "Someone was knocking on our door." "I wonder why they didn't come through." "Next time, Gentlemen, they might knock and find the door locked," Hammond interjected as he joined the two. "Captain Carter says she found something of interest." As she walked in, Sam affirmed, "I did, Sir." Hammond walked over to the window and glanced out briefly. As he did so, the team automatically shifted over towards the table. When the general turned, he motioned for Sam to give her report. "There was no organic residue, but they did pick up a faint nuclear signature. Traces of iridium," Sam stated as she and the others sat down at the table. "Iridium. That's the radioactive stuff we put in the Sagan Institute box we left on Cimmeria," Daniel recalled. "You got it. I wanted it there so it would leave a very recognizable signature and ..." "Same stuff?" "Yeah." Jack questioned, "Weren't the locals supposed to give that box to ... Thor, whoever, whatever he is?" "We assume he's a member of the Asgard, an extremely advanced culture," Teal'c stated. "The fact of the matter is, we really don't know," the colonel put forward. "The Asgard must've gotten the box and sent an answer. General, we have to respond before they leave," Daniel asserted eagerly. "Um, you all know I take great pride in my title as Mister Positive. However, we did destroy their de-Goa'ulding thing. Might not they look unkindly on that?" Jack asked. "We did that to save Teal'c. I'm sure the Asgards didn't anticipate they would trap a Jaffa who isn't an enemy. I'm sure they'd understand," Daniel answered. "All right," Hammond began. "I'll tell you what. We'll send a probe though at 1300 hours. If everything checks out, you have a go." ==== Jack and Daniel met for lunch in the mess hall. Jack selected a burger and fries, while Daniel went with soup and a salad. Both had coffee. "Danny, why aren't you wearing your glasses?" Jack questioned curiously. "I am." "They don't help you when they've been on top of your head all morning." Daniel sighed as he slipped the glasses into place. He wiggled his nose and attempted to adjust the item to a proper fit. "This is one of the new pairs I got after, uh, drugging out in the sarcophagus," Daniel advised. "There's something wrong, though. The alignment is off slightly." "The other pairs are ..." Jack prompted. "In my apartment." "... where they are of no help at all," the older man surmised. "Can you see? Daniel, if we need to go to Cimmeria ..." "I can see," Daniel insisted. "They just aren't that ..." "Comfy?" "Yeah." Daniel ate more of his tomato soup and then asked, "Any thoughts on Sam's project?" "It sounds interesting, but I still don't know enough about it. It has promise, from the little we heard." "Advance warning of Goa'uld ships heading for Earth could be really important." "I'm sure Hammond will approve it." Jack finished off his hamburger and asked, "How's SG-6 coming along?" "Good. They're, uh ... gelling, and they're bringing back valuable information," Daniel answered about the team that was now a full time archaeological field unit under his direction. "I ..." Hearing the hesitation, Jack prompted, "You what?" "I thought I'd speak with General Hammond about the assignments, though." "Why?" "Jack, SG-3 thinks SG-6 is a joke. They've, uh, returned with some ... questionable items." "Not true relics from days gone by?" "Maybe I shouldn't say anything." "No, you need to tell me. I'll talk to Hammond," Jack stated strongly. ~And maybe have a little discussion with SG-3 myself.~ "We need to get back," Daniel said as he looked at the clock. "But I'll tell you about it later." "I'll be listening," Jack responded as he scooted his chair back and stood to leave. ==== SG-1 stood in the control room with the base commander as the MALP was sent through the Stargate. When the camera activated, it showed several dead Cimmerians lying on the ground, apparently killed from staff weapon blasts. An image of a woman as the camera panned the area caught Daniel's attention. "Whoa! Pan right." The woman became clear. She couldn't be heard, but she was crying as she held a dead man in her arms. She appeared to be pleading to the camera. "That's Gairwyn: the woman who showed us around. She's saying something," Daniel observed. The volume was increased and Gairwyn was heard saying the Etins have come and then begging for help. Walking up the stairs from the control room to the briefing room, Daniel advised, "Cimmerians use the word Etin for Goa'ulds. Gairwyn said the Etins are there. For a thousand years, Cimmeria was safe from Goa'uld attack, and then we show up and screw up Thor's technology." Teal'c avouched, "DanielJackson is correct. The Goa'uld usually send an advance scout though the Stargate to determine a planet's worth and vulnerability. If none of the scouts reports back, it is a deterrent to invasion." "The point is, Sir, the Goa'uld are there, and the locals aren't exactly much of a match for them," Sam pointed out. Jack spoke next, saying, "General, if we did screw up their world, we should take a little responsibility for fixing it, don't you think?" "I understand that, but let me play devil's advocate for a moment here. It's not our world. Is it really any of our concern?" the major general queried. Teal'c answered, "The destruction of the hammer device to save my life may have caused this." He stepped forward and stated, "If so, I am responsible." Following the Jaffa's lead, Jack, too, stepped forward and claimed, "General, I gave the order." Immediately after his lover, Daniel moved forward as well and reminded, "And I fired the staff at the machine." Not wanting to be left out, Sam walked forward and somewhat shyly added, "And I ... was there." Hammond felt as if a mutiny was occurring. He looked at his flagship team with some exasperation. "To answer your question, Sir, yes, I think we should be concerned," Jack stated. "All right, but keep your heads up on this one," Hammond strongly advised. Not wasting any time, the team immediately headed for the locker area. "So, it wasn't the Asgard who sent the message," Jack surmised. "Apparently not." "Maybe the Asgard wouldn't take the Sagan box," Sam offered. "It would appear the woman Gairwyn opened the Stargate," Teal'c put forth. "So, what happened to the Asgard?" Daniel asked. "I mean, why wouldn't they take the box?" "Who knows, but that's not our problem right now," Jack returned. ==== Soon, the teammates were in the locker room so they could change into their off-world attire and then collect their gear. It was unusually quiet, though, as each felt a sense of responsibility for whatever had happened to those on Cimmeria. As they changed, they silently recalled the first trip to the Viking-like world. SG-1 was on a normal recon roughly a year earlier. Things went bad quickly. Jack was alarmed when the locals began laughing at them and shouting. He decided to return to Earth, but before Daniel could dial the Gate, a flash occurred, and Jack and Teal'c vanished, leaving Daniel and Sam unsure of the fate of their teammates. Ultimately, Daniel and Sam met Kendra, who was once a host to a Goa'uld. She was freed by Thor's Hammer, which was the tall device that lit up Jack and Teal'c before they disappeared. Daniel was naturally fascinated by Kendra. She proved to him that something of the host remains and, more than that, a host can be freed and go on to live their life once again. This is what he desperately wanted for his wife, Sha're, who was host to Amaunet, the mate of Apophis. Jack and Teal'c, meanwhile, had to fight off an Unas, the original hosts of the Goa'uld, as they sought to find a way out of the massive labyrinth in which they were imprisoned. Fortunately, Kendra led Daniel and Sam to the labyrinth's exit where the team was eventually reunited. There was a pivotal moment afterward when Jack ordered Daniel to use Teal'c's staff weapon to destroy Thor's Hammer. At the time, it caused a bit of a rift between the friends. The guilt was high among the teammates. Teal'c believed the current situation was his fault simply because he was a Jaffa and had to have the hammer device destroyed so it wouldn't attack him again. Daniel blamed himself for firing the shot that actually did destroy the object. Jack initiated the hammer's end and, in retrospect, believed his decision was wrong based on Gairwyn's emotional plea. Sam was just Sam and while not directly responsible for the destruction of the powerful device, she was part of SG-1 and therefore shared in the blame. As he laced his boots, Jack was aware of the overwhelming guilt in the room. "Okay, kids. We leave it here," the colonel spoke. "We have a mission to go on, and we can't help them, if we're wallowing in the mess we created. Let it go, and let's fix it." ==== Armed and at the ready, SG-1 cautiously emerged through the Stargate. They looked around the area, checking on some of the dead bodies, and Daniel walked over to what was left of Thor's Hammer. As he looked into the distance, Jack noticed a pyramid being built just over the rise. ~That's not good,~ the colonel told himself. "Kids," he called out, prompting Daniel, Sam, and Teal'c to walk towards him. "Now that is no weekend hunting lodge." Just then, Gairwyn approached and happily stated, "You returned! Kendra said you'd come. She never doubted it." "What happened?" Sam asked. "We thought it was Ragnorock." Daniel translated, "That's the Norse Armageddon, the end of the world." Gairwyn expounded, "There was fire in the heavens, five or six bursts in the sky in a straight line, but no sound. Then we heard an evil thunder, and a great metal point came through the clouds." "A Goa'uld Ha'tak," Teal'c surmised. Seeing Jack's clueless expression, he explained, "A pyramid ship." "Ah." Gairwyn continued, "Kendra knew it was the Etins, even before the burning and the killing started. Our village is gone and most of our farms." "You said Kendra knew we'd come. How?" Daniel inquired. "She gave me a box. She said to fly it through the portal. She said you'd know what it meant. The cost of sending it was great." "The men who died here?" Sam asked. "My husband and his brothers," Gairwyn answered emotionally. "I'm sorry," Sam returned quietly. Suddenly, SG-1 came under fire by Jaffa. Daniel and Sam grabbed Gairwyn and ran deeper into the forest, while Jack and Teal'c took a position to fight off the attackers. After Jack tossed a grenade, the two also ran deeper into the forest, seeking out cover. They finally lost the Jaffa after hiding behind a large, dead tree. A couple of minutes later, the team and Gairwyn met up at a clearing, relieved to see that everyone was safe. Daniel suggested their next move: find Kendra. Gairwyn agreed to take them to her, though the colonel noted a slight pause in the woman's reaction. ~What was that about?~ Jack wondered. ~For that matter, why didn't Kendra send the Sagan Institute box through the Stargate herself?~ The colonel let go of his questions and followed Gairwyn and his team onward. ==== Daniel was eager to see Kendra again. She represented his hopes for rescuing Sha're. Even though the hammer was destroyed, he wondered if there was another way to free Sha're from her internal captor. He remained lost in his thoughts for the entire trek through the forest. ~I still have hope for Sha're. She shouldn't be in this mess, a host, a, a slave to the Goa'uld. It's my fault. I have to save her, but I destroyed the hammer. Why'd I listen to Jack? I didn't want to do it, but I did, so that's my fault, too. Maybe Kendra knows of another way. I hope she does.~ Jack, meanwhile, was still trailing his teammates as they followed the Cimmerian woman. He remained concerned at the carnage he'd already seen when coming through the Stargate and the enemy encountered in the earlier firefight. Mostly, the pyramid being built disturbed him greatly. He suspected the planet was now overrun with Jaffa, and he wasn't sure how to turn things around. ~Four against what ... a hundred? Two hundred? Just how many stinkin' Jaffa are on this planet right now? Maybe the locals will help, but, crap, how many locals are here? We never did a count. This is on me. I ordered Daniel to blast that thing into kingdom come. Yeah, I had my reasons for that, but they don't seem so important right now. Never leave a man behind, and never take a safe world and make it unsafe.~ Sam's focus as she walked was on Gairwyn, who was impressive to her. Though the Cimmerians were definitely more primitive than present-day humans, she showed bravery and the willingness to lead. The captain pondered what it might have been like for her, had she been born in another era, one in which women were not given the opportunities they were in today's world. The blonde's thoughts were pushed aside when she realized her CO caught up and actually passed her. She smiled quietly, knowing the colonel liked to be in the lead, to face danger head on himself, and not be a follower to his teammates. ~I used to think about crossing the plains on a wagon train and how tough that would have been. Women and children walking mile after mile across the prairies, through the desert, making do as best they could. That wasn't an easy life. I don't know much about Viking women, but Gairwyn carries a sword at her side. She must know how to fight. Is that because the Goa'uld are here, or was she trained to fight before?~ Teal'c, meanwhile, had one thought and one thought only flowing through him. The changes on this world were of his making, a result of his presence. The honorable thing to do was to fight, to return the world to its safety before SG-1 took out the hammer. He didn't know how to do that, but he vowed to fight to the death for the residents of the world. ~If I had never come to Cimmeria, Thor's hammer would have continued to protect this world. I did not destroy it, but it was destroyed because of me. It is my responsibility, my duty, to save these people, no matter the cost. I will remain on this planet indefinitely until I know they are safe again.~ ==== ~Okay, I wasn't exactly expecting this,~ the colonel thought as the group arrived at their destination. ~Maybe this explains her hesitation earlier.~ Within the forest was a clearing that looked like a memorial or burial site with several ceremonial adornments in the area. "Kendra and her family reside here. Hopefully, she is now with Thor," the woman told the team. As Gairwyn walked over and stood by Kendra's final resting place, Daniel and Sam followed, though Jack and Teal'c stayed back and began to check out the perimeter. "My dearest friend. Kendra used her knowledge only to heal, and this was her reward. They've already killed over half of our people." Daniel and Sam sat down, both studying the grave and items they were surprised to see atop it. Gairwyn explained, "It's customary to leave a person's favorite items outside their grave to take with them on their journey to Thor. These items are of no use now to any of us. They belong with Kendra." Sam was drawn to a ribbon device. She put it on, something that concerned Daniel. The device activated, startling everyone. "You possess the power!" Gairwyn exclaimed excitedly. "What?" Sam asked. As he moved closer, Daniel surmised, "Well, that would make sense, wouldn't it?" "Why?" "Well, Kendra retained the ability to use Goa'uld technology because she was a host to a Goa'uld. You must retain the ability because you were a host to Jolinar." "Yeah, but ... I, I have no control over this," Sam claimed. Gairwyn interjected, "Kendra said it took her years to master the magic of the power." When Jack approached after his mini-recon, Daniel informed, "Uh ... little discovery here. Carter seems to have the ability to use Goa'uld technology." "Really? Let's see," the colonel requested. "Well, it seems to have a mind of its own, Sir." "Concentrate," Gairwyn advised. Sam gave it a try, and suddenly, a blast blew, creating a hole in the ground. "Hey! Hey! Watch where you're pointin' that thing!" Jack ordered when he saw the powerful palm of the device unintentionally pointed in his direction. "Sorry," Sam responded. "Well, you realize what this means?" Daniel began. "Sam could use one of these ribbon devices to help us fight the Goa'uld! She could use one of those healing devices we saw Kendra use." He watched his teammate put on the healing device. "Just ... concentrate, like you did with the other thing." When nothing happened, Gairwyn urged, "You mustn't give up. You must strive to master control of the power. It takes time." "Yeah, well, that's going to have to wait. Why don't you bring that stuff with you? We should find a place that's a little less public," Jack suggested. Gairwyn then offered, "Let me show you where my people hide." ==== Gairwyn led the team to a cave and took them inside where other Cimmerians were hiding. Torches lit the interior. Kettles for cooking were visible, indicating the locals were truly living inside the cave. "Olaf, these are friends. They came to us through the ring," Gairwyn told the leader of the men. Upset at the presence of SG-1 who he recognized, Olaf returned angrily, "These are the dogs of Midgard. Thor has abandoned us to the Etins because of them, because they destroyed Thor's hammer! It is these that have brought this down on us!" Midgard was the name the Cimmerians used for Earth. It was believed that was where the Cimmerians were taken by the Asgard and relocated to Cimmeria in ancient times. "And it is these who can save us! With their help, we can still summon the power of Thor." "Don't you understand, woman? Thor has abandoned us because of their evil." "For crying out loud," Jack spoke. "Don't you understand that this woman is right? We can help you, if you'll let us." "How?" "We've fought the Goa'uld before, and we've beaten them," Sam stated. "And I will remain here to do battle with you until the Goa'uld are driven from this land," Teal'c promised. "Of course, we have to know what we're up against first. You willing to help us on that one?" Jack asked. "I know a way around the patrols. I'll take you," a less incensed Olaf stated. "Good." ==== As he waited in the cave, Daniel put his glasses atop his head with his boonie covering them for now. The misaligned frames were perturbing and made his nose feel funny. Though this meant he couldn't see as clearly as when he wore them, he figured his eyesight didn't need to be perfect while inside the cave. The archaeologist perked up when Gairwyn mentioned the Hall of Thor's Might. He asked her about it and she explained it was a place where Thor placed all his powers to help the Cimmerians defend themselves. "That may signify as some sort of Asgard weapon, or weapons," Daniel stated. "You think they kept weapons hidden here somewhere?" Sam asked. "Where is this ... Hall of Thor's Might?" the archaeologist questioned. "It is in the woods. I can show you," Gairwyn answered. "Yes, please, but, uh, we should wait for Jack to come back. He might find something while he's out." Gairwyn nodded and went over to where some her women friends were gathered. "She's, uh, impressive," Daniel opined to Sam. "She was sure ready to fight out there." The teammates recalled the moment when they split up from Jack and Teal'c after the firefight with the Jaffa. Suddenly, they'd heard a noise approaching and all three of them prepared to fight the enemy. Gairwyn had pulled out her sword and was about to lunge after the Jaffa, only it turned out to be Jack and Teal'c. "Yeah, she withdrew her sword easily. I couldn't do that." "Well, she's probably been trained for that for her entire life, Daniel. We'd both need to take lots of classes to do it half as well as Gairwyn." "You're right." ==== Meanwhile, Olaf led Jack and Teal'c to where they could see partially built pyramid ships in the distance. Troops of Jaffa were all around. Ordering Olaf to wait, Jack and Teal'c moved closer. Peering through his binoculars, Jack noted, "They look like those guys who used to be with Ra back on Abydos." Teal'c informed, "They are Horus. They guard the family of Ra. These probably guard the Goa'uld, Heru'ur." "And he'd be Ra's what? Cousin? Uncle? What?" "He is the son of Ra ... and of Hathor." "Nice pedigree," the colonel sarcastically quipped. "He is a very powerful System Lord; much feared, even among Goa'uld. He is a conqueror. He eliminates all who dare tread in his shadow, including other Goa'uld." Unfortunately, the observations were interrupted when Olaf was discovered by the Jaffa. In fact, it was Heru'ur threatening the Cimmerian, ordering him to kneel. Olaf argued, maintaining his only god was Thor, and proclaiming, "He taught us to stand as equals!" When Olaf refused to tell him about the visitors who came through the Stargate, Heru'ur used the ribbon device on him. As soon as the device activated, Jack and Teal'c opened fire, striking many of the Jaffa. Heru'ur, however, turned on his personal shield, saving him from injury. Miraculously, Jack and Teal'c were able to grab Olaf and head for the cave and safety while Heru'ur simply watched their retreat. ==== "What happened? Did you run into Apophis?" Daniel asked when Jack returned to the cave and he saw a weary Olaf. "Not exactly." "It was the Goa'uld called Heru'ur," Teal'c explained. "You're kidding!" "Friend of yours?" Jack asked. Daniel explained, "Horus, the Elder, ancient Egyptian god. Pretty mean one, especially considering his parents were Ra and Hathor." Jack advised that he was certain they could blow up the pyramids, as long as they had enough artillery. On the down side, the Gate was heavily guarded. "Which means we can't evacuate the Cimmerians," Sam noted. "Well, I guess we'll just have to hold up in here awhile till things calm down," Daniel stated. "Things will not calm down, DanielJackson. They will, in fact, calm up," the Jaffa corrected. "He means things will escalate, of course," Jack spoke, translating for his friend's lack of understanding of the English language. "The new pyramids in the valley are landing pedestals for the Goa'uld mother ships. They will most likely arrive very soon and contain large numbers of death gliders," Teal'c advised. "I'm afraid we're on our own, kids," Jack opined. "If we can use C-4 to blow up a Goa'uld ship, couldn't we use it to blow up the camp?" Sam queried. "Well, it's a small practical problem. If we use all the C-4 to blow the camps now, what do we use when the ships and gliders show up later?" the colonel wondered. "Guys, there's a, a ... there's a third option here we might want to consider," Daniel began. "There's a legend around here about a Hall of Thor's Might. "Daniel ... there's a time and place for mythology." "Ah, with all due respect, Sir, we thought Thor's Hammer was a myth until we proved it was real," Sam reminded in support of her fellow scientist. "Jack, I think Thor's Might may refer to, uh, uh, an alien weapon or weapons that have been hidden away for centuries," Daniel elaborated. "We could certainly use the firepower, Sir." "And Gairwyn said she'd take us there." "Well, as much as I hate to admit it, it sounds like our old buddy Thor is our best bet. Why don't you two try to find this ... weapon ... whatever it is. Teal'c and I will lay some explosives, see if we can slow the attack." "Yes, Sir." "Good luck," Jack called out. A moment later, he stood up and started to walk away with Teal'c and Olaf, but then he stopped, turned, and hurried to the cave exit. "Daniel!" "Huh?" "Glasses!" "Oh, uh, yeah. Thanks," Daniel replied, putting his glasses back in place so he could more easily see. ~Geez,~ Jack sighed with an incredulous shake of his head. ~Without his glasses, he'd probably think that hall was a restroom.~ ==== Gairwyn led Daniel and Sam to a place in the forest where amid the trees was a tall monument similar to Thor's Hammer. "This is the Hall of Might?" Daniel questioned. "You were expecting something different?" the local female asked. "Well ... uh ... maybe a hall?" "I don't see anything that could be a weapon," Sam noted. "I'm sure this is it," Gairwyn advised. Daniel replied, "Well, maybe this will send us somewhere else, like the obelisk sent Jack and Teal'c to Thor's Hammer." When the archaeologist moved closer to the monument and raised his hand to touch it, Gairwyn immediately warned, "It is forbidden to touch the stone." ~Why? Let's find out.~ With some hesitancy, but believing it was the thing to do, Daniel reached up and touched the stone, which lit up. After that, a bright light enveloped the three, and they were transported to a place of darkness. "Daniel?" Sam asked. "Wow! What a ride!" "Where are we?" Daniel turned on his flashlight to light up the area and answered, "Well, this is a step in the right direction. At least it fits the definition of the word hall," he noted. He looked around, his confusion obvious. "I don't understand. No inscriptions, no alien devices, and no visible way out." Sam's attention went to a monument against the wall. A center stone began to glow. The whole place shook for a moment, and then a Viking in full dress and helmet appeared. "I am Thor. You are brave to come before me." "O mighty Thor, we need your help," Gairwyn spoke reverently as she kneeled in front of the image. "However, only the worthy may witness Thor's might." Gairwyn asked, "Do you not think me worthy?" When the image vanished, she questioned, "Why has he forsaken me?" Sam explained, "It's just a holographic recording. It's being projected through that hole in the ceiling." "Oh, yeah, if you say so," Daniel responded. "So ... what does it mean?" Sam asked. "I'm not sure. Maybe somehow we have to prove that we're worthy before he'll trust us with his might." "Which you still think is a weapon." "I'm hoping so, at this point." "How can we prove our worth?" Gairwyn queried. "Well, given that the rest of the room is empty, I assume it has something to do with this stone," Daniel said, touching it and setting off a new round of room shaking. Moments later, much of the floor crumbled into a pit below. A narrow strip not much wider than a gymnastic balance beam served as a bridge from the trio to the monument. "Oh, this is ... this is definitely a test." It was clear the three were supposed to cross the narrow path, prompting Daniel to add, "I don't suppose this is the best time to bring up my problem with heights." He drew a breath. ~I didn't think so.~ Sam crossed over first, followed by Gairwyn, only the ground shook again, causing the woman to fall onto the beam. She'd only gotten halfway across, leaving her in a perilous position. ~I have to do this. It's dumb for Sam to ... retreat. Don't look down.~ Daniel called out that he'd help Gairwyn. Cautiously, he walked slowly to the woman's location. "I'm right behind you now. Almost there." The man who was afraid of heights reached Gairwyn and quietly explained their next move. She tried to raise herself up when the beam fell apart, prompting her to lose her balance and fall. Daniel fell after her. Sam was alarmed, only her fear turned to stunning shock as inexplicably, the floor became solid, and Daniel and Gairwyn were simply lying on it. "Are you guys okay? Okay. So ... uh ... what was that all about?" Sam asked. All of a sudden, the Viking reappeared, during which time the three rose to their feet and faced the image. "You have shown true selflessness and bravery. Willingness to sacrifice oneself to save another is an honorable trait. I salute you. Now you must add wisdom to courage. Solve the riddle of the runes, and I will show you my true might." Daniel was surprised the hologram knew what happened. It didn't make sense that some type of computer image could actually know what occurred. Sam suggested perhaps there were sensors in the room, but the archaeologist had a hard time believing it. "Now what?" the blonde queried. A moment later, there was another bright flash of light, after which the trio found themselves in another room, prompting Daniel to respond, "Now we try to solve the riddle of the runes." ==== ~Why can't I figure this out?~ For quite a while, Daniel struggled to solve the riddle to no avail. ~It doesn't seem like this should be so hard. I must be missing something, but ... what?~ "Is Thor testing us?" Gairwyn asked. "I figure it's some sort of safeguard. He wants to be sure that whoever finds the weapons is smart enough to understand the technology and use it wisely. It's like he wants to be sure his children have grown up enough before he, uh ... hands 'em the keys to the armory, which might not have been a bad idea if we'd done the same thing on Earth." "Well, it doesn't make sense that he would waste time when the planet's under attack," Sam countered. "Well, remember, he thinks this is a protected planet, that his anti-Goa'uld devices are infallible. I mean, he couldn't know there'd be any hurry to find whatever Thor's might is." "Well, there is a hurry. Can, can you solve this?" Sam inquired. Sighing, the linguist responded, "Uh ... Okay. Um ... They aren't letters or words. Originally, runes were ideographic." "So, each rune stands for an idea," Sam surmised. "Right. Now the first one is associated with Thor's protective power." "That could mean anything. It could be the Goa'uld detector they put up at the Gate or even the hammer device." Daniel walked along the wall and replied, "Uh ... This last one represents a wagon, but it was also called Thor's Chariot. Now, that could be a ... spaceship." "Great. What about the middle two?" the captain asked. "Um ... One is a dice cup, or fate. The other is a horse or ... movement." "What does that tell us?" Sam queried. "I have no idea," the archaeologist admitted. He stared at the representations, desperately trying to piece together the message they were depicting. ~Maybe riddles just aren't my thing.~ ==== More time passed, but Daniel was still perplexed, unable to make sense out of the runes. "Daniel, can you figure this out?" Sam asked. "Of course, I can ... with time." "Well, we don't have a lot of time." "I know that Sam. Jack's depending on me, and I'm stuck on the same page. None of this makes sense to me." "Keep focusing. The answer has to be here." ==== In the forest, Jack and Teal'c planted Claymore mines, while Olaf watched and served as a lookout. Eventually, Jaffa were seen approaching. Jack waited for the the Jaffa to be in the right spot and when they were, he triggered the mines, one after another. Many were injured or killed. Then, he and Teal'c moved in closer, opening fire on yet more Jaffa who were coming towards them. At last, all of the Jaffa were harmed or dead. "Thunder and fire! You do possess Thor's might," Olaf put forth. Without warning, he tossed his axe between the two teammates, who ducked, and shouted, "Hyaaaaaa!" ~What the heck was that? Some sort of ritual or something? He could have killed us.~ Looking behind them, Jack and Teal'c were stunned. They didn't see the lone Jaffa closing in on them from their backside. Fortunately, Olaf saw the attacker. His axe impaled the Jaffa in his chest, causing him to fall. ~Oooookay. He just saved our lives,~ the colonel acknowledged. "Now we are matched," Olaf proclaimed as he patted Jack on the back. "Thanks." The three warriors left the area and soon heard the sounds of horns. "What's going on, Teal'c?" "They are signaling their position. They will close into an interlaced pattern. They will sweep in and corner us. It is an old Jaffa technique," Teal'c advised. ~We need that weapon!~ Quietly, Jack urged, "Come on, Daniel." ==== In the Hall of Thor's Might, Daniel was still puzzled. He was frustrated by his failure to solve the riddle. Jack was counting on him to return with a powerful weapon, and right now, the archaeologist didn't even know where he was for sure. "I've never seen simple geometric shapes in any runes. I have no idea what these are about." "Well, if we don't come up with an answer soon, we'll have to find a way out of here. The colonel will need our help," Sam pointed out. Gairwyn noticed paintings on another wall with symbols and other writing and asked, "Daniel, could the answer be here?" Daniel walked over and reviewed the items, replying, "No. Those aren't runes. They're pictographs." He sighed. "Okay. One wall has runes; one has pictographs; and one has simple geometric shapes." He looked cluelessly at the walls and admitted, "I have no idea what he wants us to do." The Viking appeared and said, "There is no shame. Perhaps in more time you will have come of age." Daniel stepped up anxiously and called out, "Uh ... excuse me." He held up his finger. "Could you, uh ... Could you, uh ... please just ... one second?" When the Viking essentially froze, the linguist turned. "Okay. Norse runes were ideas, but in later years they became letters; but they were also numbers." He walked the wall of runes and noted, "Three ... fourteen ... fifteen ... nine. It's no use. It, it, it doesn't mean anything." "Yes, it does," Sam refuted. "3.14159. It's pi!" "It's pi?" "Pi!" Sam affirmed. Daniel looked at the Viking and said, "It's pi? It ... is ... that's what you wanted us to figure out?" He looked at Sam. "Right. Pi is an Earth term. We have to depict it somehow ..." His mind was working full force. "... on the geometric shapes." He walked over to the appropriate wall and felt the circle. "The inside of the circle is soft like sand." Sam stated, "Pi is used to find the circumference of a circle by measuring the radius." "The radius." Daniel used his finger to draw a line from the center of the circle to the bottom. "That's it?" After Daniel reached forward and pushed the stone, the trio became aware of a light beam behind them. They turned and saw the Viking image disappear. In its place was a small gray alien with large black eyes. ~Wow!~ Daniel exclaimed silently. "I am the actual one ... whom you know as Thor," the alien introduced. ==== At this point, Jack, Teal'c, and Olaf made it safely back to the cave where the Cimmerians were hiding. As Teal'c remained outside as a guard, Jack ordered Olaf to get the people as far back into the cave as possible and to put out the fires. When Teal'c went inside to tell Jack the Jaffa were coming, Jack sighed and repeated his quiet mantra, saying, "Come on, Daniel." The colonel was worried. ~Thor's weapon may be our only way to save these people, not to mention ourselves.~ ==== Daniel, however, was currently in awe of the gray alien in front of him. He wasn't even thinking about weapons at this moment. "Daniel, this is uncanny. It looks just like the descriptions of the Roswell Grays back home," Sam observed. "I guess there's some truth to those stories after all," Daniel replied with a smile. ~Maybe I should have read more about them in the past, but I figured it was just a lot of ... imaginations at work.~ "You think the Asgards may have visited Earth?" "Why not?" "I am the supreme commander of the Asgard fleet," Thor announced. "How can this be?" Gairwyn asked with wonder. Thor answered, "In the ten-span since I created this world you, are the first to reach this level of contact. You've finally grown wise enough to see me in my true form." Pointing to Daniel and Sam, Gairwyn spoke, "These are the wise ones. I would never have come this far without their help." "Gairwyn, it's a hologram. It was probably recorded a thousand years ago. It can't hear you," Sam stated. "On the contrary, my image is a living transmission. I am communicating to you from my quarters aboard the Asgard ship, Biliskner," Thor advised. Daniel walked forward in amazement and stammered, "You mean, you're the real ... Thor?" Daniel asked. ~Wow.~ He saw Thor blink. "This is, this is ... This is great." Then his mission returned to the forefront of his mind. "Um ... We need your help. The Goa'uld are, are here." "Impossible. Cimmeria is a safe world," Thor negated. "Yeah. We sorta messed that up," Daniel admitted. "Oh, Daniel. Careful," Sam urged. "Look, if we want them to be our friends, we have to show them that they can trust us," Daniel told Sam. He looked back at Thor. "You, you see, we came here about a year ago to meet you and your people to make an alliance against the Goa'uld. One of our party, a Jaffa, was trapped in your labyrinth." "The Jaffa serve the Goa'uld," Thor stated. "This one does not. He stands with them, and now with us to fight the Etins," Gairwyn put forward. Daniel claimed, "You see, so we had no choice but to destroy the hammer to free our friend." "And by doing so, you have opened Cimmeria to attack by the Goa'uld." "Yeah, apparently." Sam requested, "So, uh ... if you have any weapons that might be of help, we would really like to set things straight." "Weapons?" the Asgard echoed. "Isn't that what all those tests were here to protect?" Daniel queried. "The tests were designed to tell us when the Cimmerians would be advanced enough to see us as we really are. We did not anticipate outside interference." "Well, you see, we didn't mean to interfere," Daniel returned, only to have Thor disappear. "No, wait!" Suddenly, Daniel and Sam were back outside in the forest, standing near the monument. "Where's Gairwyn?" Sam responded, "Good question." The captain tapped Daniel, indicating the two should head back for the cave. They began walking. "The colonel's going to be disappointed when we show up without any weapons." "Yeah, I guess," Daniel agreed as he trailed after his friend by a few steps. ~Gawd, Sam's right. Jack's going to kill me for not returning with some big gun or something for him to use.~ Daniel wondered about the stories he'd heard growing up about the aliens who supposedly crashed in Roswell, New Mexico. Could they have been Asgard? He recalled rumors about alien survivors taken to Area 51. Was there any chance that was real? He thought perhaps he should inquire about that once back on Earth. Certainly, if the aliens were Asgard, and some have been imprisoned for decades, then forging an alliance with this race might prove difficult. Morally, though, he decided he should bring it up to General Hammond at some point. ~Or maybe it was all some kind of hallucination. I mean, there wasn't a weapon, and Thor just left us. Well, we don't know what happened to Gairwyn. All I know is the Asgard aren't very happy with us, or at least with me.~ ==== Jack was happy to see his teammates return to the cave. "Well, that's timing for you. The party's about to begin," the colonel advised. "They're getting pretty close. How many are out there?" Sam asked. "We are outnumbered approximately twenty to one," Teal'c answered. "Daniel, you look suspiciously empty-handed," Jack observed, walking by his teammate and then turning to face him. With a roll of his eyes, Daniel admitted, "Yea ... yeah." "Yea, yea, yeah what?" "There's nothing, Jack." "Nothing?" "Well, we did meet the real Thor," Sam revealed. ~We think,~ Daniel thought silently. "Did you now?" Jack responded sarcastically. "Nice fella?" The sound of an explosion drew the team's attention. "All right. Here we go," the colonel stated, leading his team outside where they took cover behind rocks and shrubs. A cannon blast roared past the team, destroying a tree behind them. One of the Horus warriors shouted, "Intruders from the Chaapa'ai! Throw down your weapons! Surrender now, and the slaves of this world will be allowed to live and serve Heru'ur! Fight, and they will all die!" Sam advised, "Colonel, we don't have enough weapons to go around." "They will all be killed, O'Neill, women and children included." Daniel looked at his lover and stated, "If we are responsible for this invasion, we can't allow that to happen." Jack looked back at the innocent Cimmerians, now in danger because SG-1 destroyed Thor's Hammer. Many were already dead. He saw a child holding on tightly to a man's leg. His heart broke. He couldn't fight, knowing the Cimmerians would be killed. The colonel raised his gun in the air to signal surrender, with Daniel and Sam quickly doing the same. All placed their weapons on the ground. Reluctantly, Teal'c put down his staff weapon as well. "Take care of your people," Jack told Olaf, who shook the colonel's hand. ==== Now under heavy guard, SG-1 walked away from the cave and followed their captors towards the Goa'uld encampment and probable torture and death. "So, this Thor guy isn't going to help?" Jack questioned. "He was, uh, upset with us for destroying the hammer." "At the time, we didn't have a choice." "Jack, we always have a choice. We just didn't know enough back then to make the right choice." "We had to protect Teal'c." "Maybe there was a way to get Teal'c through the Stargate before the hammer was activated," Sam put forth. "When we came through last year, it didn't start right away." "We couldn't take the risk," the colonel insisted. "But we didn't even try," Daniel pointed out. "Okay, that's on me," Jack stated. "The sad point is we're about to die, and Thor has apparently deserted the Cimmerians. Teal'c, do you think this Heru'ur dude will follow through and leave them alone since he has us now?" "Heru'ur will most likely kill them after he kills us," the Jaffa opined. Jack sighed, "I knew you'd say that, but surrendering was the right thing." "Yes, Sir. They would killed the Cimmerians right then and there, if we hadn't." The conversation ended, each of the four left to their private thoughts as they continued walking. The silence remained for several minutes, until the team's linguist surprised his friends with his current thought. "Before they rode into battle, the Sioux used to say, 'This is a good day to die'," Daniel stated out of the blue, prompting Jack to lightly backhand his Love on the arm. A thunderous sound was heard, drawing looks to the sky. "Then again, maybe not." Daniel noticed a break in the sky and anxiously tapped Jack on the back since the colonel was looking in the opposite direction. Immediately, the colonel turned. He removed his sunglasses in surprise at the sight that was becoming clearer with each second. Stunned and awed, SG-1 looked skyward where a black cloud churned. Slowly, the Biliskner leveled off and was visible to all. "Ladies and gentlemen, I think this is ... Thor's chariot," Daniel proclaimed. "An Asgard mother ship," Teal'c stated. "I've heard them described in Jaffa legend." With a screech and multiple blasts of light, the Jaffa disappeared, and the pyramids were destroyed. By the Stargate, Heru'ur watched the destruction with resignation and managed to escape. Happily, that's when Gairwyn appeared in a beam of light. She approached, a big grin on her face. "The Etins are gone. Thor sends his thanks. It was your help that made this possible." "Well, to be honest with you, I think we got kinda lucky," Daniel replied. "He told me to give you a message to satisfy your curiosity. I'm to tell you he's a member of a species who have visited your world often. They are a friend to all, protector of all, except the Goa'uld, with whom they are at war." "Well, that's very nice, but I'd still like to meet the old guy," Jack returned. "Well, he said that, like us, you're still much too young," Gairwyn explained. "For us, there is still much to rebuild. Thor has promised to leave an Asgard teacher behind to help us." "Then Cimmeria will be a safe world again. That is good," Teal'c stated. Gairwyn agreed, "Yes, it is. I'm to tell you that Thor's new hammer will make an exception for the one called Teal'c. You are welcome here anytime." "That's a big ship," Jack noted as he looked up into the sky, watching as the Biliskner moved upward into the clouds. "I'd like to see it one day," Daniel commented. "I mean, the inside, and not just up in the sky." "Gairwyn, can we help you rebuild?" Jack questioned. "Is there anything we can do for you right now?" "No, we will do it, and the Asgard teacher will guide us. We will always be grateful to the Sons of Midgard." "Take care, Gairwyn," Sam expressed. "Listen, if you need us again, do the same thing you did before," Daniel told the woman. "Oh," he stammered, realizing the box was destroyed when Gairwyn tossed it through the Gate earlier. "Um, we'll send you a new Sagan box very soon," Sam added. Gairwyn nodded. "Goodbye, Gairwyn," Daniel said with a smile as he joined Jack to return to the Stargate. Sam and Teal'c nodded and joined their teammates, all eager to return to Earth. ==== Upon returning to Earth, Hammond decided to save the debriefing until the following day. He dismissed SG-1 to conclude any outstanding duties they needed to perform on shift before leaving the base. Teal'c simply headed for his quarters, while Sam eagerly returned to her lab, wanting to spend an hour or two working on the Seeker Project. She believed in the project deeply and just needed to convince the general of its worth, both in her time and the cost to research it further and make it a reality. Daniel, who briefly thought about talking to Hammond about the Roswell incident before deciding it should at least wait until after the briefing, went to his lab to continue reviewing mission reports and items brought back by various teams, while Jack wanted to check in on a few of the new recruits. Not long thereafter, as he walked down the SGC corridors, Jack passed the current leader of SG-3, Colonel Robert Makepeace. "O'Neill." "Makepeace." Jack paused and made a turn, calling out, "Makepeace. Hold on a second." He approached the Marine. "I understand your team is playing games with artifacts and relics." Makepeace sneered, "Maybe a little joke here and there." "Make another one and you won't be third in command around here much longer. The study of ancient civilizations through these artifacts and relics is key to our understanding of cultures we meet." "Didn't you choke just now trying to get that out," Makepeace spat. "You don't care about that junk any more than I do." "I don't care what you think I care or don't care about. I'm giving you an order, Makepeace. Play it fair, or you'll be out." Jack glared at his verbal opponent and then turned. He was walking away when he heard the unit commander call out spitefully. "It's not the relics you care about, O'Neill. It's that long-haired geek. He's your woman." Jack didn't even pause. He wasn't about to get into a fight with Makepeace on the base. ~A little Intel will find out where he hangs out.~ ==== "Hey, Love," Jack greeted as he closed the door behind him and made sure it was secured. "Hi, Babe," Daniel replied as he approached for a hello kiss. The fact that his life partner was two hours later than expected prompted him to inquire, "Where have you been?" "I had something to take care of," Jack answered with a smile. "What have you been doing?" "Changing out my glasses," the younger man replied, removing them briefly and putting them back on. "I'll just throw the other pair away." "Take it back," Jack urged. "That eye doc of yours makes a bundle off of you. He should fix them or provide a replacement pair." "It's not a big deal." "I guess not, but ..." "Well, maybe I'll take them in one day and see what he says. Oh, and I've been thinking about the Asgard; uh, Thor. I mean, it's exciting," Daniel spoke energetically. "I don't think he's very happy with Earth, or maybe just not with me, but the way he had Cimmeria set up is ... intriguing. Think about it, Jack. He created a world the Cimmerians could understand and let them visualize him as a Viking. It's amazing." "By the way, if there weren't any weapons in that hall, what was in there?" "Riddles and ... manipulation, or hallucinations, or ... well, I'm not sure what it was. First, we proved our bravery when the floor crumbled and then we had to prove we knew pi." "Pie?" "As in the dimension, not chocolate cream or apple," Daniel clarified. "I didn't think I could solve it. Actually, I didn't. I mean, I said the numbers, but Sam realized what the numbers meant." "So, what was the point?" Jack asked. "Apparently, the idea was that at some point in their evolution, the Cimmerians would enter the hall. That would prove something, though I'm not sure what exactly. Then they'd be tested." "For bravery?" "Well, that's what we had to do." "Just what happened in there?" "Um," Daniel responded, not really wanting to think about it much. "The floor sort of ... went away, and there was this path, a, a very narrow path that we were supposed to cross. Sam made it, but when Gairwyn was about halfway, she fell, but I think that was because Thor made the whole place shake. I, uh, well, I went to Gairwyn to help her up." "Daniel, you'd do that for anyone." "Yes, but there's one thing you don't know." "What's that?" "I hate heights." "How come?" "I have no idea, but I've never liked being up high and looking down," Daniel admitted. "I said that out loud before Sam went across." "You're thinking Thor heard that and made it your test of courage." "Maybe," Daniel returned. "Anyway, after that, we had to solve a riddle." "Pi?" "Yes." "It's kinda crazy," Jack opined. "So, the idea was the Cimmerians would one day show their bravery and be smart enough to understand pi?" "I think so. He wasn't very happy when we told him we destroyed the hammer," Daniel stated. "Not surprised." Changing the topic slightly, Jack queried, "What did this exciting alien look like anyway?" "Well, to be honest, he looked like one of the aliens from Roswell."
"He was very small, even fragile looking. Uh, he didn't wear any clothes, either."
"A naked alien saved our butts?" Jack questioned.
"If you get down to it, naked is a cultural concept. I doubt Thor thinks of himself as being naked."
"Tell that to Hammond tomorrow at the briefing," Jack sighed as he sat down on the sofa in the living room. He yawned since the day was long and taxing. "Come over here."
Daniel willingly sat down next to his lover and leaned in against him.
"Oh, you wanted me to tell you about about SG-3."
"I've already taken care of it."
"What did you do?"
"I had a little discussion with Makepeace before leaving the base," Jack answered. "You shouldn't have any issues from SG-3 from now on."
That's when Daniel turned his head to face his colonel and noticed the discoloring on his face.
"Jack, you, uh, have a little ... bruise on your jaw."
The general grinned and replied, "You should see the other guy. Hey, I'm starving. How about pizza?"
Daniel nodded. He felt conflicted. Obviously, Jack engaged in a physical fight with Makepeace on his behalf. While he disliked the mere idea of physical altercations, there was a piece of him that felt oddly at peace about the fisticuffs. After all, Jack was protecting him. To have anyone willing to fight for him or protect him in any way was something very new to the archaeologist. The only people to have ever done that before were his parents, and they died when he was only eight. Thus, Daniel decided to accept his lover's actions and enjoy the rest of the evening.
Jack placed the call, ordering a large supreme pizza to be delivered to Daniel's apartment. He purchased soda as well, since he had a hunch his soulmate's fridge was devoid of soft drinks at the moment.
As the lovers waited for dinner, they snuggled together on the couch, quietly reflecting on their day.
"I'd like to go back to Cimmeria one day and see how they've progressed," Daniel put forth.
"Me, too. I want to meet Thor. You can take me to that hall."
"Well, the truth is that we were transported inside by Thor. I don't think there's a way in otherwise."
"The real shame was Kendra being killed, and the other Cimmerians."
"She was one brave woman," Jack opined. "You spent more time with her than me, but what I observed was a woman with a lot of courage."
"She was brave. She died for her people, Jack. What more could anyone want from a leader?"
"You're right about that. Hey, do you think Carter can learn how to use all those Goa'uld gizmos we brought back?"
"Probably. She just needs to put her mind to it. I mean, I think it's a little scary to think about, using some power left behind by Jolinar to use a ribbon device."
"Yeah. Part of me just wants to have that thing destroyed."
"No, we need to see what we can learn from it. Sam's the right person to check that out. It'll take time. Even Gairwyn said it took Kendra a long time to master them."
"Gotta love time, especially our time."
Jack kissed his lover, which led to more kisses that were rudely interrupted by the sound of the doorbell and a voice calling out that their pizza was here.With a groan, Jack pulled back and stood to retrieve the food and drinks.
The couple enjoyed their meal, listened to a bit of soothing music on the radio for a while, and then resumed their kissing, which led to a wondrous union of their bodies. The intense togetherness threw aside all thoughts of Cimmeria, Vikings, Roswell, the Asgard, and missions as a whole. All that mattered was the coupling between the two men.
The day was a full one, with surprises around every turn, but at the end of it, the lovers were together, at home, and completely in love. For Jack and Daniel of Colorado Springs, it was another happy ending to a satisfying day. What more could they ask for?
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