Champions Gate
By Elizabeth Carter

Chapter Fourteen

Entertain the Devil

Samantha Carter rubbed the bridge of her nose and puffed out her cheeks in an exhale of air as she read the roster, not of the soldiers under her command, but in fact those that headed all the guilds. Guild, title and name were listed.

Janet sat across from her lover watching with interest as she had the same list in front of her. "We have a High Tiler." The smaller woman said. "He's the Guildmaster of Tilers and Roofwrights."

"Kilnmaster Clay, Guildmaster of Potters," Sam said. "I'd like to get to know them." It was a very secret Zen for Samantha Carter but she enjoyed pottery.

"How about this for a title?" Janet said. "Keeper of the Threads."

"What does she do?" Sam asked.

"Guildmaster of Embroiderers." Janet quirked a crooked smile.

"People who embroider have their own guild?" Sam blinked.

"Every trade, Sammy." The petite doctor grinned.

Sam shook her head. Thinking of the other titles she had read through: Master Tailor, City Lampmaster, Warden of Keys, Lord Taverner who of course was Guildmaster of the Guild of Hospitality. And there were a score of others. Armorer-in-Chief, Swordmaster Champion, Master roper, High-Baker…the list went on and on.

"Check this one out." Sam said. "Page seven, paragraph nine."

Janet looked. "Master-General of Medicus; Liege Healer Janet Fraiser." Janet dropped the thick pamphlet. "Oh my God." She looked to her wife. "Since when did I become Guildmaster of Healers?"

"Since we met the Malakim, I am thinking."

"Well what about you, Madam Prime Minister?"

"Oh, don't be ridiculous." Sam scoffed.

"Samantha, we both know that is exactly what you've become. You are the second most powerful woman in the Malakim Empire. You are in command of the Grigori Stargate Command, you are, in effect, in charge of this entire province of that same government, and if you look, it's an entire planet." Janet leaned forward emphasizing her point.

Sam could only stare. As the reality suddenly hit her, just how much power she actually had. "Holy Hannah!"

"Hon." Janet saw the complete unrest in her wife's face. Instantly, she was at her side. "Listen, Novalis said that we would have this sort of position. She said, more or less, that we were figureheads. Especially you. Sam, these people look up to you, my God they made you into an iconic hero."

"I didn't…" She paused. "I didn't look for this, Janet. I don't mind telling you that to command an offworld SGC is an opportunity of a lifetime; one I'd jump at. One I did jump at. This I can do. I've been a colonel in command of the flagship team of Earth's SGC, I can handle commanding a military base. I am good at that. But this… this is larger then I am."

"No Sam, it isn't. 200,000 people will follow you. Think of it like you're the Mayor of a large city."

"When you say it like that it isn't so bad." The blonde said. She flashed a smile. "So Deputy Mayor, who do we appoint as our Cabinet?"

"I am thinking the Blue Wing will handle things nicely."

"The Cabinet, as well as the Flagship team of GSGC?" Sam raised an eyebrow

"Good point." Janet said. "Perhaps it's time to call the Queen?"

"Good idea. I knew there was a reason I married you." Sam kissed her wife.

"Besides, I think it's a good policy to be on very good terms with the Queen, since it's her Empire we are representing with the Grigori Stargate Command," continued Janet.

Sam looked at her beloved and was amazed. "How come you're not overwhelmed with your role?"

"Sammy, I am CMO, or was CMO of the SGC, Chief of Staff of NORAD and Chief Virologist at the Airforce Academy Hospital. Being Chief of Staff here on Grigori won't be that much of a stretch."

That's true. The paper work and administration won't be that different."

"Not really, no. I doubt it. Like Boudicca said about paperwork, it's all pretty much the same." Janet didn't mention the fact that she was relieved that her wife was now in administration and lab-work. But the doctor knew her lover also enjoyed fieldwork, how long would it be before Sam decided to head the Flagship team? If, and when, Samantha decided to go back into the field, Janet would support her as she had for the past fifteen years.

"I think its time to call the Guildmasters and the heads of law enforcement together., and call a meeting with our senior officers of the GSGC. After that, I want us to inspect all the troops. It's imperative to see what divisions we have and what we have to work with. And whom we are working with. I want to establish confidence in them as their new CO. I know I don't have to tell you to meet with your staff and your junior officers, Hon, but once you have established the Infirmary I want to meet with your senior officers as well."

Janet smiled. "See, I knew you could handle it. '

"I guess handling a city would be like handling a well-oiled military base. Keep everything functioning and pull a few Hammonds. Let the troops know you will do what ever you can for them, but never be a push over. General Hammond taught me a lot about how to take command, how to handle the troops. There wasn't a solider in the SGC under his command that wouldn't lay down their life for him. I try to follow his example."

"Sam, you're a great commander, you know how many soldiers back at the SGC wanted to be in SG1, because YOU took command?"

Sam rolled her eyes. "Janet, SG1 is its own entity, its reputation is bigger then her members. My goal here is to make every Wing as celebrated as SG1. I hope this academy brings out brilliant minds and sturdy soliders. Think what we can do to expand exploration, all that we can learn out there. Astrophysics, stellar cartography, medicine, Quantum Physics, Anthropology, Archeology, the things we can learn are endless." There was a great glow to Sam's eyes thinking of all the knowledge that could be discovered, learned and shared.

"And just think, we don't have to deal with the NID, Kinsey jr. or the Pentagon." Janet said. "Novalis and the Malakim seem to be as eager to explore on a more academic level than a military faction." Janet added.

"Well, if you can summon up Hurricane Andrew on a whim or cause the entire earth to tremble, and have extremely powerful starships, military ordnance isn't the prime objective. It leaves a great deal of freedom to explore on an scientific level," Sam smiled.

The Grigori Stargate program wasn't under scrutiny as Earth's and thus there was a greater freedom to explore, what Sam and her people discovered she could send along to the SGC back home.

"Jan… I need you to be my conscience. I don't want to fall into corruption, I am scared to death of it."

"Sam?" Janet took her wife's hands into her own and held them. Brown eyes looked into blue. "What troubles you?"

"What… what if I become Gou'ld-ish? All jokes aside, or Napoleonic or...or…" the blonde stopped, sighed, and started once more. "I have a lot of power. Like you said the second most powerful woman in the Malakim Empire."

"Samantha, you question your self now with ethics, conciseness and the rightness of it all. Maybe you are walking on a razor's edge of power, slip but a little and you will fall, but you have always had such a high moral code. Use that, let it guide you Sammy. You never set out to find power, you never thought yourself in the same light as the Goa'uld or this Usiel character.

"You've measured yourself through your mother's eyes and through Hammond's, even mine. You sought to overcome, not people my love, but science. The greatest quest in your life despite the military has been science and to unlock its secrets, not for power, but because the mystery of it intrigues you. This was what pulled you into the Stargate Program in the first place because it held you enthralled of what was possible.

"Hon, you are the perfect blend of military and intellect. Somehow you are able to balance science and the military equally, and you do so with an exceptionally high moral fiber. Maybe, because your mother was a philosopher and a Scientist you have such an outlook on life. Your dad and Hammond are military leaders, thus giving you military strength. You have this to draw on and guide you as you always have done. Now isn't any different. So, what if you are the second most powerful woman in the Empire of the Malakim, right now you have the charge of 200, 000 souls, that is your concern."

200,000 and four, Babe," Sam smiled. "You forgot the three most important people in my life." She kissed her wife "And I am responsible for myself as well."

Janet smiled. "If President Zoë Bartlet can handle the States and King William can handle the UK, I think you can handle Grigori without being all Goa'uld-ish." Janet smiled. "After all it's only one small planet."

Sam flashed a brilliant smile. "Only one problem… I really hate paperwork."

"I'll be your conscience, Hon, not your secretary." Janet smirked.

"Awww come on…." Sam pouted.

"Nope." Janet said. "And no cute pouting either. If Becky can't get away with it, her Mama sure as hell can't." Janet kissed the blonde's lips. "Come, its time to greet the troops.

Usiel watched, almost bored, as the drilling of the Jaffa continued hour after monotonous hour. Finally, he moved from his chair, having made a decision. Stretching his black wings, he wandered to the control center of the Hok'tar.

His words of greeting to the blonde female lounging upon the command seat on the Pel'tak of the Cheops class warship were, "This is a stupid waste of ground troops. You can't defeat the Malakim by brute force."

"My Jaffa are worthy warriors," Osiris said, almost defensively, as she shifted upright.

The Jaffa pilot, Ga'rak, listened with a careful ear but continued his task of navigating the large mothership, patrolling the badlands between the Malakim Empire and Goa'uld territories.

"Sure they are, but not against my race. You've been told my people don't use archetypal weaponry. We use the elements and the ecosystems. Killing us is very hard to do. You have to remove the heart! And your Jaffa will not get close enough to do that. I tell you now, sending shock troops is completely asinine. You cannot kill us so easily. There are better ways to stop a Malakim."

"Three times with a zatnicitel and I believe that will put an end to your boasting," Osiris commented dryly and nodded.

The Jaffa piloting the ship spun round on the balls of his feet and fired his zat-gun, as he read his master's unvoiced order.

Usiel roared as the blue electrical charge rippled through his body. His Black wings flared out in his pain. A second shot of the gun and Usiel fell, into a pile of limp bone and feathers. The third shot was absorbed within his body rather then disintegrating. Still Usiel fell.

Osiris's face lit up with brilliant smile. She stepped off the dais, laughing as she kicked the prone body of the fallen dark angel. She started to walk away when her foot was grabbed.

Her blue eyes flared in glowing white-gold at the sudden touch. Shocked, fear ran the course of Osiris's mind, as she realized her enemy wasn't dead. A jerk of the hand that held her leg prisoner and the System Lord landed on her backside and none too softly.

"I told YOU, to kill one of us, you have to remove the heart! You tell them over and over and they never listen." Usiel was now on his feet. His ruffled black feathers settling against his body.

Osiris screamed her frustration. Humiliated before her insubordinates, shamed that she was so easily taken, the Goa'uld raised her hand causing the Ribbon Device to flare to life. With all of her rage she struck Usiel in the chest.

The angelic went flying across the bridge, his back slamming so hard against the bulkhead it should have snapped, killing him.

"Shoot him! Osiris snarled at two Jaffa entering, their staff weapons poised in the defence. Both large warriors complied and fired. Golden flares of energy struck their target with precision. Usiel, bombarded with weapons, fell as a puppet with its strings cut.

A moment later the angel rose unfurled his obsidian wings and settled. "Once again, you are not removing my heart. Shooting me in the chest doesn't count. Oh yes…. That HURTS!" the Fallen snapped. "Not a pleasant experience. Just because we are hard to kill doesn't mean we don't feel pain. Now knock it off." He grumbled. "I am trying to advise you, you knuckle dragging parasitical troglodyte. Now if you would just listen!"

The Jaffa stared. The staff weapons had been discharged in a head and chest shot. Anyone else would have died. He should be dead. But he wasn't. Usiel didn't need the use of a sarcophagus to bring him back from the grip of near-death. Too often they had seen their gods need the sarcophagus to bring them back from death. But this winged warrior shook off the fire of a zatnicitel, Ribbon Device and staff weapons. … Was this not was it was to be a god?

Those that had traveled with Usiel knew what he was capable of. Even the wind bent to his will. This too was the power of a god. He didn't need a host to live; he didn't need Jaffa to survive in…. He was truly a god.

What had happened on the Pel'tak rippled through the underbelly of the ship. Until all the off duty Jaffa were speaking of it.

"He can defeat any of the System Lord." Ga'rak said. "I was there, I saw everything. He is as powerful as the Ancients, as powerful as Anubis. He is the mark of a god, not the Goa'uld."

"You speak treason, Ga'rak." An old Jaffa warrior said. His left cheek, eye and ear were horribly scarred.

"I speak of what I saw, Ka'anor. No matter what Lord Osiris did, Usiel survived. I shot him three times with a Zatnicitel. The last had no effect on him, he did not disintegrate as he should have."

"Haku'sho and I fired our staff weapons, the shots would have killed any Jaffa, any slave, and it would have caused a god to go into a sarcophagus. Usiel rose up, on his own power. He admitted to pain but he lives still." A young redheaded youth stated in awe of what he had seen on the bridge. The lad's name was Ken'shn and he was full of zest to prove himself. It was often the dream of young Jaffa to go against not another System Lord's First Prime, but the leader of SG1, the Tau'ri warriors. To finally defeat them would be a coup for any Jaffa. What Ken'shn saw upon the Pel'tak brought a realization to the boy just how he could do this. But he could not if he served a weak god.

The lad wasn't the only one to start rethinking their positions. A young man to his left was nodding his head. Rurouni was a lean male that could have, if on Earth, the linage of Korean-Latino. "The Shol'va Teal'c and Bra'tac lead a revolution of free Jaffa. Who among us hasn't thought of Freedom from the Goa'uld? As we have seen they are not gods. If they are gods, why does Lord Osiris fear the Tau'ri female, Samantha Carter?"

"Samantha Carter is a formidable warrior, worthy of opposition." Haku'sho finally stated. "I have faced her in battle several times and was nearly destroyed each time because of it. Even Usiel has some fear of her. I have heard his arguments with Lord Osiris. He called her a Nephalim. I do not know what this is but it's stirred some unrest in Lord Anubis."

"I have heard Usiel and Lord Osiris speak. The winged one says a Nephalim is a child of Devine fornication," old Ka'anor said reaching for a lump of bread that was on the table. "All the Goa'uld claim such."

"This is different." Haku'sho argued. "A Nephalim is a child of a Malakim and a Tau'ri. And we do know that Selmac is Samantha Carter's father, then it's reasonable to assume that her mother was one of the winged females."

"How is this relevant? This does not buy our freedom." Rurouni said, his hands were around a tankard of hot tea.

"Yes, Rurouni, it does." Ga'rak insisted. "I say we press our advantage now while Usiel and Lord Osiris are at odds. We give our support to him; he can easily defeat Lord Osiris and possibly Anubis. If he can not defeat Lord Anubis, Samantha Carter can."

"You mean to switch loyalties from our Lord to Usiel, then again, once Usiel overcomes Osiris, to Samantha Carter?" Ka'anor wanted confirmation of what was being discussed.

"Yes. Too many times have I seen my brothers and sisters fall because of Goa'uld oppression. What I have seen today on the Pel'tak confirms the Goa'ulds are false gods. Usiel has proven who has the true power. We can have our freedom brothers if we but take the courage of Teal'c and Maser Bra'tac and stand against their oppression."

"And all the better, Ga'rak, to use them as they have used the Jaffa for countless years." Ka'anor finally relented. "Spread the word brothers, for the time being we will give Usiel our loyalties."

"And how do we become free of him?" Young Ken'shn asked.

"As Master Bra'tac would say that bridge we cross when we come to it. For now we entertain the devil." Haku'sho commented. "Besides he wages war with Samantha Carter and more of his kind, if fortune be with us, they will solve our problem for us."

Five hands clasped together in a union of brotherhood and common oath. They would have freedom.

At the rap of a knuckle upon the wood at his door Jack looked up and saw Walter Davis standing there.

"Sir, the Contingency of the Malakim Guild of Alien Affaires has commended their notice that they are arriving." Captain Davis said.

"Alright Captain, bring them to the briefing room."

"Yes sir." The thin man bowed his head and went to do as ordered.

"Jack," Daniel started, "Um… the thing about the Minister of the AAG, she's a bit more formal the Queen Novalis." The man rubbed the bridge of his nose as he did when he was nervous. "She ah…sounds different then any other Malakim we have dealt with. She stands on the old formality of…"

"Daniel!" Jack said sharply as he was losing patience with anyone who beat around the bush. "If you're asking me if you can be present when they come, I am sorry. The Minister's aid gave clear instruction you were not to be there."

Daniel faltered, as if someone had dumped a bucket of ice water down his pants. "Wha…what did they say ?"

Jack winced; he didn't like to see his friends hurt, "I am sorry. The minister preferred Jonas Quinn." He wouldn't tell the archeologist that the Malakim were suspicious of Daniel concerning his demeanor.

"Oh." Daniel took off his glasses and pinched the bridge of his nose once more as if to ward off a headache. "Well then, I think you're in good hands. Jonas has a talent for making friends…."

"Yeah, it's that puppy-face, no one really likes to kick it." Jack shrugged. "He smiles too much if you ask me."

Daniel knew the general was trying to cheer him up. "Well then, if you need me I'll be in the labs going over some of the findings Razeal and I found at the Exiles Gate." Daniel sighed. "Any word from Sam?" A quick change of subjects.

"Nothing yet." Jack said. "But she's never failed the SGC, Carter will report."

"Right… " Daniel shoved his hands in to the pockets of his trousers and sighed. "Well, I know you have a lot on your plate, what with the testing for the Zataarc."

"Yeah." Jack rubbed a hand through his silver hair. He watched Daniel leave the office and for the moment Jack allowed himself a moment of peace that he hadn't known for a long time. Now, behind his desk, his dark eyes fell on the portrait of himself and his goddaughter taken at Six-Flags.

He couldn't help the smile that found his lips. He adored the tiny girl. A miracle to be sure. "Carter's daughter…. Little-Bit, she could almost pass for mine…" But it was Janet, not Sam, who gave birth to her. She had the perfect blend of both women right down to the doe shaped eyes. So unique, half blue half brown. Her mind too was of both women. Sometimes her intelligence frightened the old General.

And he remembered:

On one of those rare days Jack had off from the SGC, he leisured in the company of his adopted niece / goddaughter. He positively fawned over the tiny girl and loved to spoil her rotten. Of course he wasn't the only one to do so. There were four other gentle men that adored the little one. Daniel, Teal'c, Jonas Quinn and of course former General George Hammond loved to indulge the girl. Christmas was huge with her and her 'six-pack' of uncles even if there was only five.

Jack was sitting on the ground helping Rebecca strap on her purple Fisher-Price inline skates. She was already wearing the various pads over her knees, elbows, and wrists and of course a helmet.

"And you whack the ball into the net right?" Rebecca said looking at her neon blue plastic hockey stick and Nurf wiffleball.

"Right" Jack smiled. "But see, there is a goalie who will try to stop the ball or, on ice, the puck from getting into the net."

The girl with unique eyes studied the net. "Uncle Jack, there isn't a keeper."

"Ah, well see, normally there would be but we're just practicing," He tapped the top of the girl's helmet. "Tell you what, you be the keeper and so will I."

"That's not how they do it in Harry Potter," Rebecca quibbled.

"Ugh, not Potter again," Jack mockingly teased. "We're talking Wayne Gretsky."

"Who?" Rebecca frowned not reckoning the famous Canadian hockey player.

"Kids these days," The General shock his head. "I bet you know who Einstein, Copernicus and Newton were don't you."

"Oh yes," The strawberry blonde nodded enthusiastically.

"That Schroeder fellow?" up went a silver eyebrow.

"It's Schrodinger, Uncle Jack," Rebecca corrected shaking her head disappointingly.

"Madam Curie?"

"Oh yes!" another enthusiastic nod

"The Doctors Mayo?"


So, if you're so smart, how come you don't know who Wayne Gretsky is?" Jack pinned the little girl with a teasing smile.

"Well, did he do anything important?"

Jack blanched. "He's only the greatest hockey player of all time!"

"Oh, well I bet Harry Potter is better. He doesn't play hockey but he's the best seeker."

"Science geeks and Harry Potter as heroes… sheesh kiddo, someone has to teach you about the important guys," Jack grinned.

"Oh, they aren't my heroes," Rebecca said as she climbed up on wobbly-skated feet and leaned close to Jack. Her tiny hands covering his ear so she could whisper. "SG1 are my heroes and Mommy too, she's the bestest doctor. Even 'owies' don't hurt so bad when she fixes them. I only pretend Harry Potter is my hero for the other kids. But my Mama and Mommy rock."

"Yeah, they do," Jack winked. Getting up on his own black inline skates Jack took up his hockey stick. "Okay, now this is pretty easy, all you have to do is get the ball into the net and get more points then me. Now, since I am quite a bit bigger then you are, I am going to spot you 47 points. And we'll play until fifty okay?"

"Okay," Rebecca flashed the 'Carter Cheshire grin'. "But Uncle Jack you are sooo going to lose."

The wiffleball wasn't as easy to navigate as a puck of course and, when you had a five year old who enjoyed miniature golf, trying to get her not to swing the hockey stick wasn't easy. She had a difficult time remembering which stick you could raise and swing and which you used to scoot the ball along.

She did pretty well on the overly large wheels of the kiddy-skates that Rebecca could easily walk in them as much as skate. She zipped along chucking the wiffleball in to the net.

48 / 5

Rebecca decided Uncle Jack didn't skate well at all as he fell down a lot. She found herself giggling so hard at her godfather that she could scarily concentrate on playing.

48 / 35

They skated about the driveway chasing the ball to and fro. At one point Rebecca decided to keep it away from her uncle by picking the ball up and scooting away with it.

"Hey, that's cheating!" Jack yelped.

"You never said it's like soccer, and we couldn't touch it! You said we had to hit it with a stick" Rebecca zipped to the net, put the ball down and whacked it as hard as she could making a goal.

49 / 45

"I'll give you that one on a technicality," Jack quibbled, gently tapping the top of the girl's helmet.

They skated in circles zipping and zagging this way and that, O'Neill taking a few tumbles just when he was gaining quite a bit of headway. Rebecca darted in (as fast as slow moving wheels would take her) stole the wiffleball away from her godfather and made a goal.

"Whoohoo!" Rebecca clapped. "Yeah! I won!"

"You sure did, but give your old uncle a break, I think I am going to have a heart attack." Jack was wheezing hard.

"Well, my Mommy will fix you up." Rebecca patted Jacks sweaty chest.

"Oh good." Jack plumped down on the cement driveway.

Rebecca decided to plop down upon Jack's lap, with a woof of air expelling from his lungs with the slight impact of her tiny body.

"Hey, how about ice cream, Little bit?"


Once inside, Rebecca removed the pads and helmet but kept the skates on, all because Jack O'Neill, hardcore general of the SGC, couldn't resist the charming, melt your heart smile the child flashed when she asked if she could keep them on.

Jack was amazed at the child's brilliance. "I bet you know all about wormholes and how they work, don't you Miss Carter?" he started to get the chocolate ice cream out of the freezer.

"Sort of. Mama knows way more," Becca commented, her unique eyes a field of blue and a horizon of deepest brown, watching intently as her uncle poured on thick hot fudge. "My Mama pin…pine..." she screwed up her blonde brows in concentration, "… Pioneered wormhole physics way way way more then Schrodinger did with quantum physics."

Jack didn't really know who Schrodinger was beyond a large ginger cat, though some vague part of his mind told him the man was a scientist, but don't ask him when the guy ran around.

"Ok Smarty, tell me about how it's supposed to work."

Rebecca bit her lower lip, thought for a moment, then her duo-color eyes sparked as an idea struck her. She leaned over and took a sheet of paper that was by the phone and a pen. "Okay…um… well here…" She drew two dots about twelve inches apart. "Two points, right? And…and the shortest distance between two points is a straight line."

"Right." Jack leaned over ice cream forgotten.

"Not necessarily so, if you account for the tesseract variable. Then a straight line is an awfully long way. So, the shortest distance is not to have a distance at all."

Jack stared. "Wh…what?" his ever predominate question with the elder Carter was now asked to the blonde colonel's daughter.

The child sighed. "Mama says space isn't three dimensions. Wormhole physics travels in five dimensions, okay? Uncle Jack, you're not as dumb as you pretend to be," Rebecca scolded. "You can get this," She cocked her head in a very Carter way. "What is the first dimension?"

"Jack sighed. "Well, a line."

"Okay good, and the second?"

"A line squared."

"Yes! A flat square would be the second dimension. And the third?"

"I guess you would square the square." Jack said, "As you did with the first two."

Rebecca was drawing the corresponding diagrams, which now depicted a cube. "Right! This isn't a square but a cube, with six sides. So then the fourth dimension would be you square the cube." She gestured hopelessly to the drawing. "I can't draw that, but it is done with E=mc2. The fourth dimension is time. Now that you get the fourth dimension, the fifth is you square the fourth. You square E=Mc2. That is tesseract time."

"Folding space."

"Yes and no. More like pinching space. The whole thing is put into Euclid." She took a coin from the counter top and showed it to her uncle. "You aren't folding space you are pinching it until two sides become one side."

Jack stared totally agog.

"What about the hole in the apple thing?"

"Well yeah, you're making a hole go right through space and time and you do that by pinching two ends together."

By this time the ice cream, both in the bowls and the Boston Robbins container, was fast melting into chocolate puddles.

"Little-bit, you don't seriously understand all of this?"

"Sure. I asked Mama tons of questions and stuff. Mama is a quantum physi'is'cist for the Airforce; but you know that. She explains things about deep space and junk because she's really good at astrophysi'is'icks too, but Mama says there are two different things. Like knowing stuff Mommy does about the heart and knowing stuff abut viruses."

The last time Jack O'Neill was shocked by a child's level of intelligence was when he had met Merrin, the girl who had taught Carter how to build a naquaada reactor. He, at one time, had made a joke about Earth's IQ going up with two Carters on the planet. Rebecca Marjorie Fraiser-Carter was indeed Samantha's daughter.

"And do you even know what E=mc2 means?" Jack frowned a little.

Rebecca shrugged, "Einstein's equation."

"Okay what does the E stand for?"



"Mass," Rebecca shrugged once more.


"The square of the velocity in centimeters per second."

"Tell me this isn't fun for you." Jack almost whined.

"Oh, sure it is. Mama, Mommy and I play games all the time and I ask her tones of questions 'cus I like knowing things. And we play at the park all the time and with Sassy's dogs Abby and Bodie. They like to chase balls and Frisbees. Mommy taught me and Mama how to rollerblade. We have a lot of fun outside and we play inside games too like Playstation. I like Barbie Adventure. It's kinda like Tomb Raider only little kids can play it. Oh and there are no guns. I can't play games with guns in them. But I can play Gex the Gecko"

"Well, thank God fun isn't cooped up in a lab, I'd worry." Jack shivered.

"Mommy and Mama said I should just have lots of fun and play and if I want to know something they teach me. But I shouldn't grow up too fast because being an adult lasts lots longer then being a kid. I think they are worried because I am kinda smarter then the other kids at school. I told them not to worry. I can pretend not to know how to read because then the other kids won't hate me for being smart. But that made my moms sad. I hate it when they get sad."

"Other kids tease you?"

"No, not any more," Rebecca commented. "They used to cus' my eyes are way different and the other stuff," again another shrug. "I think it's best if they think I am not very bright at school then they don't hate me quite so much. I think that, if others think I am an idiot it gives them something to feel smug about. Why should I disillusion them?"

"Little-bit…do your mothers know about the teasing?" Jack came around the counter and took his goddaughter/ niece into his arms and held her.

"Oh yeah, about my eyes they do. Gosh, they got super mad at the other kids and their parents, and it made them cry too. I didn't want my moms to cry but they did. They felt it was something they did and they got all super protective and they decided to pull me out of school and get private tutors. Mama really, really hates it when people say things about me being way too smart for my own good, and something about being wise beyond my years."

Jack winced. He was always giving Carter and Doc Fraiser a hard time about Rebecca being a genius; he had always figured they took it as a compliment. Now he gathered Carter's abysmal lack of social skills was due to the fact she too was teased about her intelligence, making it rough on her growing up and therefore she became an introvert. Carter and Fraiser would want a relatively normal life for their daughter. But on the other hand, Jack knew his 2IC and CMO would never squash a child's potential.

Most of the time Rebecca's intelligence and comprehension tended to scare adults; it also puzzled them when this same genius child liked to watch kiddy shows on Nick-Junior and Disney cartoons. The child was typical of the old cliché '5 going on 30.' It was no wonder that Carter and Doc Fraiser insisted upon Rebecca exploring the fields of being silly: buying white tennis shows just to paint them different colors, planting jellybeans in the garden so there might be a jellybean tree, going to the cinema in sleepers, hugging a tree, jumping in piled leaves, snowball fights, blowing bubbles, making mud pies, creating bizarre snowmen, sledding and stomping in mud puddles. All of these things were part of Rebecca's growing up.

Whenever SG1 and he gathered together, Jack O'Neill would watch Carter, Fraiser and the kids doing absolutely the silliest, giggling things. It was hard to imagine the tough Sam Carter getting into a tickle fight with her kids and the Napoleonic Power Monger, but she did.

Both women encouraged as much silliness and imaginative play in Rebecca as possible to counter balance the incredible intelligence and comprehension of things typically beyond the ken of a child of five years. While most parents tended to be concerned that their child learns learning games, Carter and Fraiser were concerned that their child wouldn't be a child. So they played often, and instructed and taught Rebecca whenever the insatiable curious child became mentally inquisitive.

"I am sure going to miss you, Little-Bit. But you're going to be safe, and that's what matters." He swallowed hard. "No parent should ever out live their babies… I pray Sam and Janet never have to know that kinda pain, ever. Live with the angels, Little-Bit, and be safe kiddo. Your Uncle Jack will always be there when you need him."

Straightening his white dress shirt and putting on the blue jacket with brackets of ribbons Jack O'Neill made his way to the briefing room, privately wishing he could wear his BDUs. Unlike General Hammond, Jack had decided that he would dress like all of his troops save for very official occasions. He knew he had to distance himself from them as he was now the CO of the SGC, but he wanted to be, like Hammond, an approachable commander and, for Jack, that meant you dress like the troops. Of course, his uniform had a bit more starch in it then the typical SF or Field team. Still, he would not allow anyone to forget he was the CO of SG1 once upon a time. He knew what it was to be out in the field as it was to pilot a desk. And the troops respected him for it. It was this respect he wanted to shine when the visiting delegates of the Malakim Empire came for the conferences.

"Liege Commander on Deck!" Boudicca heralded as she laid eyes upon Colonel Carter and Doctor Janet Fraiser entering the great compound of the Academy.

The thud of a thousands warrior feet stamping into rigid attention caused the earth to tremble under the young colonel's feet. In one single motion all 180 thousand of Malakim warriors knelt and slammed their fists against their breastplates like a crack of thunder.

When Sam heard that 200,000 Malakim had come as the new Eighth Choir, a part of her believed that the vast majority of them would be civilians, townsfolk, wanting to be a part of the legend. She was not prepared to see the opposite was true. So many warriors had heard the song of the Grigori and answered it

"Oh my God…." She whispered under her breath.

The SGC had fifty officers in the field units, another four hundred and fifty as support staff, including medical personal, and one- hundred SFs troops. Here, tens of thousands of winged troops had fashioned themselves into tight formations. This was indeed greater then the SCG. Samantha Carter was the Commander-in-Chief of an entire army, and the idea suddenly struck her with awe.

"At Ease." Sam ordered. The acoustics of the compound carried her voice so that the troops the furthest from her heard their Liege Commander as clearly as those at her feet. In unison, all rose to their feet in orderly precision, their hands clasped under their wings behind them at parade rest. Many voices, one sound, this was the way of the Malakim.

Venerable Samantha seemed to their eyes, even to Janet and Cassandra who accompanied the blonde saw what radiance was within the woman they loved

Janet leaned close so that none may hear her speak, "They are going to expect you to say something great."

"What, repeat the St. Crispian speech of Henry V or maybe something Patton said?" Sam murmured. "Can't I just give a lecture on Quantum Physics, that stuff is easy."

"'Fraid not love," Janet whispered back. "Just be a little more inspiring then former General Bauer."

Sam rolled her blue eyes at the thought of a man that should never been given access to the Stargate, because of his gun-ho-ness he nearly destroyed earth and he did destroy an entire planet with Naquaada reserves. "I think I can do better then that quack of a CO." Sam smiled and thought of all her literary heroes as a teenager, all her equal rights activist heroes as a young woman, all her military heroes as a young officer, and of beloved retired General George Hammond of what they might have to say at such a moment. Sucking in an air of breath Colonel Samantha Carter addressed her army.

"Warriors of Grigori, it is my honor and privilege to be here with you. This is a new journey for new beginnings. Not only for a new Stargate Command, but for a new alliance between the Malakim Empire and Mortal-kind, but also for the birth of the Grigori."

This must have impressed the angelics for all 180,000 wings flared up in exuberance, as did their voices.

"It is my hope that the Grigori Stargate Command will become a vast archive of knowledge, learning and achievements of unparalleled scholarships. But we are now at the brink of a great war, and we stand to confront the System Lords and the power they wield over the galaxies. We will not fall back nor will we fail. It is a hard fight to be clear , but I have seen the stout hearts of the Malakim in battle, I know we shall overcome the Goa'uld.

"They come to destroy and to enslave freedom. For fifteen years I have fought against them, longer still the Malakim have stood against their tyranny. We must push Anubis, and Usiel to their last. We must make them call upon their hidden strength, so that they shall empty their hands of all their weapons. We must fly out and meet them; we must make ourselves a fortification of will, heart and determination. We must shake the very foundation of Goa'uld power. In their greed and pride for dominion they will lash out and we will crush them. We must make them overreach their strength, so that they teeter and fall. We must, with courage and wide eyes, go forward and take our stand."

180,000 troops roared their approval and jubilation for the speech they had heard. Their hearts were fired with the passion stoked by their beloved Liege. Sam was pleased. She wanted to be the sort of commander that people stood proud when they said her name. Throughout the annals of history warriors have said such things. 'I served with Nelson, I served with Patton, I served with Truman, I served with Master Bra'tac, I served with Hammond… I served with Carter.'

Sam wanted to a the sort of Commander that had the respect of the troops because they knew deep down to the soles of their boots that she would do anything to protect them. She wanted to be like George Hammond, well respected because that respect was earned. Hammond went to the line for his people, even mixing words with the President, the Joint Chiefs, the Pentagon and the Chairman of Appropriations. Sam would tolerate nothing less in herself.

Sam wanted her soldiers to know she too would go to the line for them. She wanted to measure up; she wanted Hammond to be proud of her. And even though the old man was now retired he was the plumbline Sam Carter measured everything against. Her smile deepened thinking that he would indeed be proud of her. She would expect the absolute best out each and every one of her people because she gave them her absolute best. After all her icon of military leadership would accept no less.

Osiris moved serpentine like into Usiel's private chambers. The tall black winged angelic was nude, so that he might tend to his wounds as they had opened up once more. Osiris was to say the least impressed with bruises and angry welts spread across the winged beings torso.

The side of his head, where one of the staff weapons had hit him was glistening red with blood and tissue. The plasma burns on his chest was chard black and gooey from coagulated blood. His entire back was one massive purple-green black bruise. It had to be pure agony every time he moved his massive wings. Osiris had to smile at that as she had hurt him. The System Lord also admired the constitution of the warrior.

For a moment the Goa'uld had wished for his mate to have lived so that this great specimen could impregnate her with his seed, thus providing a bridge between a new spawn of larva Goa'uld and a new breed of host. Despite the outward appearance of the host, Osiris still considered itself male. As he was not a Queen, the seeding of the female host would prove fruitless. It was a shame Hathor was dead as well… still there were other queens to bargain with, once the battle with the Malakim commenced. It might prove worthy to harvest male angelics for slaves for the very purpose of being studded out to a queen. Baal was not in error in the thought of having the Malakim as hosts. Perhaps, when all this was over Usiel would find himself host to Osiris…

"You ruined one of my favored tabards you know," Usiel said as a way of greeting his guest. His angular face pouting as he threw the bloody chard remains of his clothing to the middle of the floor.

Osiris continued to watch as the wounds were cleaned and dressed for a third time that day.

"I must give my gratitude to you however." The ebony mane bowed. "You helped me prove a point."

The blonde System Lord kept her tongue.

"Seeing that destroying me with out a greater expenditure of energy is not possible will maybe make you listen?" Usiel was now clothed as he found a chair and spread his arms over the back of the sofa, and waited for an answer.

"What do you have to say?" Osiris finally asked.

"Oh, now we get to the meat of the subject." He shivered in excitement. "Those Deathgliders will definitely hurt a Malakim enough to send them into torpor for a very long time. One of those large glider cannons may even rip a hole through the chest of the Malakim, thus removing her heart. I will also say, if you want to win against Malakim, you must do so with space born battles. Ground shock troops are impotent, but in space, the Malakim are weaker."

"And your plans for the Tau'ri genocide?" Osiris prompted.

"Oh." Usiel snapped his fingers, "I nearly forgot about that one. Well, yes, we do want to wipe them out. See, I played another card. Aboard the Malakim Flagship, within the Guild of Alien Affairs I have an operative.' He flashed a messily toothy grin. "You see the Goa'uld are not the only ones to be loathsome, underhanded and sneaky."

Osiris's gold eyes flared in the hearing of the insult.

"Take pride in that, Osiris. I mean come, come, if you were truly noble you wouldn't be agreeing with me to evoke genocide on a race more or less weaker then you. There is no honor in conquering the weak. Not noble, fun, but not noble. It is so liberating not to worry about morality. You see, you worry about noble this; honorable that, and you will end up doing something very stupid to save a bunch of ingratiates. This Samantha Carter and her ragtag teammates are always doing something stupid to save people. Not very gratifying when you can't even brag about it all. The whole idea of self-sacrifice without great glory sickens me, nearly as much as wasting resources. Which incidentally you would be doing sending ground troops to fight against the Malakim."

Osiris learned that Usiel loved to bait her and so she would not bite this time. "You said you have an operative within the Malakim?"

"Yes. There are a few who believe as I do. We want the World Symphony back the way it was, not a lot to ask for. But this whole Nephalim thingy it's got to go. Now, to bait the Nephalim, we must pull her out of hiding. She is close, I can feel it, but the danger to her team, the others of SG1, on Earth will cause her to act."

"Then close the net around her," Osiris concluded. "Magnificent. Usiel if you are so confident, then lead the charge. And it will be me laughing when you fail."

"Well you won't be laughing very much will you?" Usiel cracked a mirthful grin. "I will be more then pleased to reveal the power of the Remnants." He gave another smile as he snapped his fingers. "I know what you are thinking, you back-stabbing megalomaniac…and there will be no blending with me. Nope. Not going to happen, no way no how. No snaky-thingy in my noodle. I mean, seriously, I don't even know where you've been!"

Black wings lifted in a shrug followed by a grunt of pain. "Oh, still hurting. Next time I am shooting you. It's my turn again."

Osiris glowered. "What makes you so confident there shall be a next time, winged rat?"

"Hey… not membrane here." Usiel pointed to the black feathers. "Oh, wait did you mean pigeon?" He laughed. "Oh, that was funny. You're a real riot, you know that your lordy-ship? Pigeon…ha!" The smile grew wider. "There will beeee a next time because you like me."

"You are mad." Osiris's voice dropped an octave, barely containing the anger boiling within her.

"Maybe. But you still like me. I am a very likeable person." The angelic pointed with both hands to his scarred chest, with a smile.

Osiris had just about had enough of the impetuous madness, she made to rise but Usiel barred her way.

"Now, just because you have a pet name for me…Pigeon and all, doesn't mean you can get all seductive and try to kiss me. No kisses…no hopping from that body into mine, by that mouth to mouth thingy. No kissing…" he stuck out his tongue as if he had eaten something rancid.

Osiris knew if she rose to the bait, once more Usiel would have won and proven her the fool. She left his chambers and the grating laughter behind, quietly wishing someone would take a zatnicitel to her head twice just so she wouldn't have to deal with the insane fallen Malakim. Osiris also decided that she wanted to destroy Anubis for inflicting Usiel upon her. Usiel was almost enough to make one become a Tok'ra, just to get away from the insanity.

Part 15

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