<<Previous | Story Intro | Return to Stories | Next >>
Out of the Blue
The klaxons were wailing loudly. Duncan and Jack were waiting at the end of the ramp. When Jacob Carter/Selmak walked through the event horizon, it was plainly written on his face that the visit was not a social call.
"Jacob, Selmak, nice to see you," Duncan said, offering his hand to the man.
"It is pleasant to see you as well," Selmak replied.
The two Gammians exchanged a look. Normally Selmak didn't 'emerge' until they were in the briefing room, or at least she waited until Jacob had greeted them. "So what's up?" Jack asked.
"The Tok'ra resistance, the very existence of the Tok'ra, is in grave danger," Selmak said. "We have come to seek your help."
Jack bit back his retort. The look on Jacob's face was damn near frenzied. Something big…and probably bad…was happening.
"Let's go to my office," Duncan suggested.
With a curt nod, Jacob/Selmak waited for the Tau'ri to lead the way.
"Should I call the team together?" Duncan asked.
"If you wish," was the Tok'ra's reply.
Another look exchanged. Something was definitely wrong. Selmak was never rude, or so…distracted.
It only took a matter of minutes to have SG-1 assembled in Duncan's office.
"We're dying," Selmak said bluntly. "We cannot find enough willing hosts for the symbiotes that wait. Attacks on our facilities have killed many of them. We have less than two dozen waiting for suitable hosts. Willing, permanent hosts."
"And you've come here seeking those hosts," Duncan said.
"Don't look at me," Jack mumbled.
"President MacLeod, we were hoping that perhaps you could let the people of Hope know of our need. Perhaps there are those who would be willing to blend," Selmak continued, ignoring the comment.
"Selmak cured Dad's cancer," Sam said softly. "I'm sure Doctor Montigue would be aware of those who might be in similar circumstances."
"That's a good idea, Sammy," Jacob said.
"Hi, kiddo." Jacob looked at the faces around him. "This really is a desperate time for them. Without suitable hosts, the Tok'ra face extinction. When Egeria died, so died the genetic line of the Tok'ra."
"What about another queen?" Casey asked.
Jacob shook his head. "There are only Goa'uld queens," he replied.
Daniel was frowning, his finger tapping against his lip. "I'm not so sure," he said slowly. All eyes focused on him. "The only queen located, that the Tok'ra know about, was Egeria. How possible is it that she had offspring before being imprisoned by the Pangarians? And how possible is it that among those offspring was another queen?"
"We…we had not thought on this," Selmak responded, somewhat stunned.
"Is there any way to trace Egeria's time as a queen, a mother?" Daniel asked.
"There are sure to be records somewhere," the Tok'ra admitted. "This however, does nothing to eliminate our need at this moment."
"I'll put out the word," Duncan promised. "Just don't be too disappointed if there aren't volunteers lining up at the doors."
"We understand," Selmak said. "Any help you are able to give us is appreciated."
"Is it possible for me to see the records?" Daniel asked. "Maybe I can help track down Egeria's children."
"That The Chosen would be willing to aid the Tok'ra honors us," Selmak responded. "I will arrange for you to visit the archives." She stood. "I apologize for the abruptness of our visit. There are several other worlds where I must make a plea for hosts as well."
"We'll be in touch," Duncan said. "I'll let you know in a couple of days if we have any takers."
"We will be waiting for word from you." With a nod, Selmak hurried from the room.
Casey shook her head. "They're terrified. If they lose the symbiotes they have now, they lose several thousand years of experiences, knowledge. And some of those symbiotes might have the answers that the Tok'ra need to find other children of Egeria."
"Then this is really serious," Duncan said, sitting back in his chair.
"Yes, it is. For the Tok'ra at least," Casey admitted. That there was no love lost between her and the Tok'ra was a well-known fact. She'd suffered too much at their hands to totally trust them. Only one Tok'ra had earned her trust…her respect. Selmak. The only other Tok'ra she knew well was Anise, and her host Freya. And Anise was just way too damned interested in Daniel…still.
"Yeah, well, what goes around," Jack muttered. He wasn't any more fond of the Tok'ra than Casey. He too, had suffered greatly as a direct result of Tok'ra actions.
"Well, I'm going to get the word out. I'll talk to Doctor Montigue," Duncan said, looking up at Sam. "I'm sure that there might be one or two folks willing to make an…equitable…trade."
Daniel looked at Casey. 'We should tell them. They need to know. You aren't going to be going on any missions for awhile.'
'I can go on the easy ones.'
'No. Not as long as that's my baby you're carrying.'
'And if it's not?'
'You're still not going.'
"Uh, care to share?" Jack asked, grinning.
"Yeah, well, as long as we're all here," Daniel said, shifting uncomfortably.
Everyone in the room was instantly alert. "Daniel, what's wrong?" Sam asked, worry reflected in her sapphire blue eyes. Her gaze went from Daniel to Casey and back again.
"She hasn't confirmed this with Doctor Montigue yet," Daniel said. "But Casey is pregnant. At least, we're pretty sure she is."
"You're what?" Jack asked, stunned that she would take the injections and not tell him…or at least tell Sam. He was her CO, for crying out loud! He should have been informed of her intentions to get pregnant!
"Yeah, it's news to me, too," she said glumly.
"I take it that you're not happy about this?" Duncan said. He frowned. If she had been taking the injections, surely pregnancy was what they wanted! Or had it happened sooner than they expected?
"Casey, why didn't you tell me?" Sam demanded.
"I just found out yesterday," Casey replied.
"No, that you were taking the injections!" Sam clarified.
Everyone stared at her. "Okay, if you weren't taking the injections, how in the hell can you be pregnant?" Jack asked
"Good question. As soon as I have an answer, I'll tell you," Casey retorted. "Immaculate Conception is one idea, although Daniel doesn't like it."
He grimaced. They'd discussed the matter over breakfast. Silently. His…hesitation…to fully embrace her condition, and his insistence that something had happened to her, something that she wasn't even aware of, had caused an argument. He knew that it hurt her to know that he doubted that he was the father of this baby. But he couldn't help it. Without taking those injections, there was no way for her to become pregnant…at least, not by him! "It just worries me that it could be true."
"Immaculate Conception?" Duncan choked.
"Hey, considering that she can wander around on and interact with others on the astral plane…anything is possible," Daniel replied. "And we don’t have proof that someone didn't make a little…visit…during one of her dreams."
"We don’t have proof that it happened, either," she pointed out immediately, her voice cool. And shaking. "Look, you all deal with this Tok'ra thing. I'm going to go talk to Doctor Montigue. I have to arrange for a paternity test as soon as possible, if I really am pregnant." She turned on her heel, left the office, her back ramrod straight. Her friends stared after her.
"You're an ass, Daniel," Sam said quietly, turning her attention to the man who leaned against the wall, shoulders slumped forward slightly.
"What?" His eyes went wide.
"She's pregnant, not exactly certain how, and the first thing you do is question whether or not the baby is yours!" Sam declared.
"It's a legitimate question!" he insisted, upset that his suspicions were being met with such opposition - downright hostility - from his close friend.
Sam shook her head, her anger apparent to all. "Casey has got to be scared to death, and all you can think about is the fact that somebody else might have put it to her and gotten her pregnant! As if that could happen, considering you're always with her! And you poke around in her dreams enough to know more about them than she does! And when she's 'wandering around on the astral plane', as you put it, you're right there with her!"
He didn’t want to admit that Sam was right. There was the possibility that someone, somewhere, had…well maybe not put it to her, exactly. Oh, god, he hoped that hadn't happened. He wondered if she'd had a dream, dreamt of making love to someone, of holding him, touching him, letting him touch her, take her, not realizing that it wasn't a dream. His heart tried to grab on to the 'not realizing' part. Pointing out that if it was a dream, she couldn't…shouldn't be held accountable for her actions. His brain continued to insist that if she was pregnant, and she hadn't been getting the needed injections, there was no way the baby could be his.
"You're an ass," Sam repeated. She turned and stalked out of the room. Her best friend deserved to have someone with her when…if…it was confirmed that she was pregnant. If her husband was too damned stubborn to be there, his fragile male ego too damned bruised in a situation that was nothing less than supernatural, given what they knew at the moment, then she would be!
The men in the room looked at one another. "She wasn't taking the injections?" Duncan asked.
"She said she wasn't," Daniel replied.
"You'd think that she'd say something if she was," Jack said.
"Yeah, so you'd think," Daniel snorted. "At this point I don't know what the hell to think."
"Carlotta is convinced that it is the will of the child to be born," Teal'c said calmly. "That this is a time for celebration."
"You knew about this?" Jack asked, his voice rising in pitch.
"I was informed upon my return home last night," the Jaffa replied. "Carlotta was most distressed, concerned for Casey."
"We need to figure out how this happened," Jack said, crossing his arms over his chest.
"No shit!" Daniel spat.
Duncan rubbed the bridge of his nose between his thumb and index finger. Penatil possibly had the notes for the NID immortality experiments, the main 'ingredient' of which was Immortal children, or their blood plasma at least. The Tok'ra were searching for hosts…desperately. Casey Jackson was pregnant, and nobody knew just exactly how the young Immortal had accomplished that feat, or if Daniel was the father. And it wasn't even noon yet. What the hell had possessed him to take this job?
"We'd talked about it," Daniel said softly. "Having another baby. One of the first discussions we had when she came…when she came home. I told her I couldn't deal with it. Pregnancy is hard enough on her, but god, the delivery…she suffers so damned much."
"Epidural," Jack said quickly.
"She always wants to put it off…I don't know why she thinks going through labor without anything is such a noble endeavor," Daniel said. "Then transition hits, it's too late…I can't do it."
"I don't think you have much of a choice," Duncan pointed out.
"Especially if it's not mine," Daniel retorted.
The Highlander shook his head. "I don't think it's possible. Somehow, someway, Casey's Quickening has been affected, yes. That's obvious. I don't think it's possible for the child to be anyone else's."
"I wish I could be so sure," the young archaeologist replied.
Jack studied his best friend. Tried to put himself in the same situation. Knew that he would be just as…suspicious. Especially if Sam had the same abilities as Casey. "I understand how you feel," he said slowly. "Or at least, I think I do," he added, when Daniel rolled his eyes.
"Then please, tell me how I'm supposed to deal with this," Daniel said, his words dripping with sarcasm.
"Love her," Jack said softly. "Be there for her. No matter what. You were willing to take Sha're's baby, raise him. Even knowing that a damned snake was the father. Simply because he was Sha're's son. Doesn't Casey deserve the same…consideration?"
Daniel frowned. It suddenly bothered him to realize he hadn't thought about the boy, Shifu, in…years. He was safe with The Others. Oma had seen to that while she had been Ascended. But he was a part of Sha're, and that should have kept Shifu in his heart! And Jack was right. The baby growing inside that sexy body was part of Casey. For that reason alone he would be able to love it. "I need to get to the infirmary," he said quietly.
None of the men in the room said a word as he hurried out the door.
A A A A A A
Dr. Montigue walked into the room where Casey sat on a bed, holding tightly to Sam's hand, waiting for the test results. "You are indeed pregnant. You say you have no idea how this could have happened?"
"I know how it happened," she said dryly. "What I don't know is how my Quickening was altered to allow it."
The older man bit back a smile. "You said that you merely spotted for a day during your last menses cycle, correct?"
The young Immortal nodded. They'd been so busy with Camulus at the time, that she hadn't even noticed that she hadn't had much of a period that month.
"Well, from what you've told me, I suspect you're nearly two months along," the doctor informed her.
"Two months!" She glanced at Sam, her surprise echoed in her best friend's eyes. Usually she knew within three weeks. She hadn't been sick. Not once. No upset stomach, no heartburn… "Are you sure?"
"I can order an ultrasound," Dr. Montigue replied.
She nodded. "Please do. I also need…" she closed her eyes, willed herself not to cry. "I need to know how soon a paternity test can be performed."
"That won't be necessary," a voice said quietly from the door.
Casey opened her eyes to see Daniel standing there, his eyes begging her forgiveness. "I believe it is," she said softly.
"Not for me," he replied, just as softly. "It's your baby, Case. And that makes it mine as well."
"If you aren't the father, I need to know," she insisted. "I…I'm not sure I can…that I can go through all of it…if this baby isn't part of you," she whispered. She never noticed that Sam had moved to stand at the foot of the bed, making room for Daniel to take his rightful place at her side.
He crossed the room. Put his forehead against hers. "We'll get through it, Angel. You feel that way now, because you're still in shock over the whole thing. This baby," he said, putting his hand on her belly, caressing her gently, "is a part of you. That's all I need to know. That's all that's important."
Wade's face flashed through her mind. "Um…we might not exactly know that, either," she whispered.
He pulled away from her. "What?"
"Think about Wade," she said softly.
"Oh, hell," he murmured.
She began to shake. Could that explain why she hadn't been ill? Was the child nestled in her womb not Daniel's, or hers?
"I suggest, under the circumstances, that I do a full DNA screen as soon as possible," Dr. Montigue said quietly, understanding what Casey was talking about. Wade's…unusual…parentage was well known at the SGC.
"How soon will that be?" Daniel asked.
"I would like to perform an ultrasound. If the baby is at least forty-five days into gestation, I can run the test. Some of the equipment that has been…liberated…from the Goa'uld has very interesting capabilities," the doctor said. "I'll arrange for the ultrasound. If it's feasible, the DNA test can be run today as well."
Casey was clinging to Daniel's hand. And stomping down on the hope that the baby was hers…and his. She refused to admit that she wanted to be pregnant, wanted to be carrying Daniel's child. Just one last time.
<<Previous | Story Intro | Return to Stories | Next >>