“Is it as bad as it looks?”
Daniel looked up, meeting Sam’s father’s eyes across the briefing room table. “You mean is Jack really nearly dead and Sam in the middle of a nervous breakdown?”
“Yeah,” Jacob snapped. “That’s what I mean.”
“Then yes,” Daniel countered. “It is that bad.”
Jacob sighed, cradling his head in his hands for a moment. In front of him, on the table were the medical reports on Sam and Jack. He’d read the cold, sterile reports on how his daughter had been tortured and raped, on how Jack was barely hanging onto life, suffering from some unknown disease.
"We were hoping that you could be of assistance."
Jacob looked up at Dr. Fraiser. He shook his head. "Jack would never -"
"I don't mean a symbiote," Janet clarified, already having been through this argument with Daniel. "We still have a Tok'ra healing device. We were hoping you could try that."
Jacob looked back to Daniel, well remembering the last time he'd tried to save a member of SG-1. Tried and failed. "I'll do whatever I can," he assured her.
General Hammond nodded. "No time like the present, people."
They all rose from the table in unison, shuffling out of the briefing room and heading down the corridor for the elevator. As they all filed in, Jacob looked again to Daniel. "Sam's reports are pretty vague," he said quietly.
Daniel nodded, unable to meet his friend's father's gaze. "We know what happened," he said. "Not the details, but the big picture stuff. No one has really wanted to press her for the exact whats and whens."
"I understand," Jacob said in a near whisper. And he meant it. He no more wanted to read the exact horror of what had happened to his daughter than he wanted to have his eyes stabbed out. But he couldn't help thinking that there could be some exceedingly important information in what Sam was omitting.
"I'm going to get Sam," Daniel said as soon as the elevator stopped. "I think she would want to be here."
"Good idea, Dr Jackson," General Hammond replied. "We'll meet you in the medical isolation room."
When Daniel arrived in Jack's room with Sam in tow, they were all ready to begin. Jacob looked at his daughter, offering her a small smile before turning his attention back to Jack's unconscious form on the hospital bed.
Sam crept closer, her hand clasping Teal'c's forearm. Biting down on her bottom lip, she watched Jack and her father with a worried expression. The Jaffa smiled tightly at her before once again looking to his friend.
Jacob raised his hands, holding them over Jack's chest. As he closed his eyes in concentration, the healing device began to glow. As the treatment grew in intensity, the muscles in Jack's back pulled taut, his neck straining as his pulse raced audibly on the heart monitor. But all of the reactions were involuntary. He still showed no signs of consciousness.
Jacob worked for what seemed like hours, everyone watching in perfect silence. Sweat beaded on his forehead and his eyes remained shut in concentration. With a great sigh, he finally lowered the healing device, his shoulders slumping in exhaustion.
"That's the best that I can do," he said, fighting for breath.
"But he hasn't regained consciousness," Janet said, her voice rife with frustration.
Jacob shook his head. "And he may not," he told her plainly in Selmack's voice. "A healing device is not a substitute for a sarcophagus. I've repaired the damage as much as I can, hopefully it will revitalize Colonel O'Neill's own immune system enough that he can heal himself. We have no course of action except to wait."
"Wait," Sam repeated softly.
Janet was sitting in the corner of the mess nursing a cup of quickly cooling coffee. She didn't usually come down here, but it was impossible to get any private time in her own office with SGC personnel constantly interrupting. The hours since Colonel O'Neill's treatment had been long and she needed some room to reflect.
"Do you mind?"
Looking up, she met the worried and exhausted countenance of General Carter. "By all means, Sir," she said, sitting up straighter in her chair.
"Relax," he said with a sad smile, taking the seat opposite. "I'm not here as an officer. I'm here as a worried father."
Janet nodded. "Sam's getting better."
"Better?" he said incredulously with a small laugh, toying nervously with his own coffee cup. "Thank god I didn't see her when they brought her in then."
Janet ignored his pathetic attempt at humor. "It was awful, Sir," she said bluntly. She felt for the man, she truly did. She well remembered her own anger at her helplessness when Cassandra was ill from Nirrti's genetic manipulation. She couldn't imagine being forced to watch her child go through something as traumatic as Sam's experience.
Taking a deep breath, Jacob said, "Dr. Fraiser, my daughter is a damn fine officer in the United States Air Force. She knows the score, the dangers - " he abruptly fell silent, seemingly overwhelmed by emotion.
Janet's own eyes pricked with tears and she reached out to rest her hand on top of General Carter's. "But she's still your little girl," she said in a near whisper.
A tear rolled down Jacob's cheek and he looked blindly at the wall. He cleared his throat roughly. "I read your report," he said, his voice hoarse. "She refused your suggestion of a medical abortion."
Janet swallowed thickly and nodded. She hadn't been certain until just now how much of Sam's file General Hammond had allowed General Carter to read.
Jacob's face bunched up with emotion. "Why would she do that?" he asked.
"I honestly don't know, Sir," Janet replied. "I don't think Sam is thinking very clearly right now."
He shook his head, frowning. "She can't honestly mean to have the child of this monster that did this to her."
He spat the word 'monster' with such vehemence that Janet recoiled. "Sam told me she needs time."
Jacob looked at her, his eyes filled with such hopelessness, such pain that it nearly broke her heart. She so badly wanted to put his mind at ease, but she couldn't.
Their quiet moment was interrupted by a klaxon blaring. "Dr. Fraiser to Medical Isolation Room five," the voice said.
"Somebody help me hold him down," Janet ordered as she came jogging into the room. Jack was awake, tearing blindly at the IVs and tubes in his body. Two large orderlies helped her hold him but it only made him thrash more.
"Colonel!" she yelled, holding his face in her hands. His eyes were wide and wild, but they finally settled on her face with recognition. He recognized her. Thank god! "Colonel," she said again, this time more calmly. "Sir, the tube in your throat has been helping you breathe. We're going to take it out now, but you're going to have to relax."
He nodded almost imperceptibly and his body relaxed a bit. With help from one of the nurses, they were able to extubate him. Janet didn't cringe as he gagged and gasped when the tube was removed, coughing harshly. She pushed him back against the bed, pulling an oxygen mask over his face. His initial outburst seemed to have sapped all his strength and he merely lay there for several minutes, breathing. Finally, he lifted his right hand towards her.
"The IVs have to stay in," she informed him flatly, crossing her arms over her chest.
"Sadist," he groused, but let his hand fall back onto the bed.
Satisfied that he was indeed well on the road to recovery, Janet motioned the orderlies away and called one of the SFs inside. "Inform General Hammond that Colonel O'Neill is awake and responsive," she ordered. Turning back to Colonel O'Neill, she stepped closer to the bed. She watched as General Carter did the same.
"Damn good to see you, Jack," Jacob said, reaching out to lay a hand on Jack's shoulder.
Jack looked from Janet to Jacob. "How long have I been out?" he asked, his voice raspy and low.
"You've been unconscious at the SGC for almost three weeks," Janet informed him seriously.
"Before that, you and Sam were gone for eight weeks," Jacob said.
Jack attempted to push himself up into a sitting position. "Where's Cart-"
With a surprising amount of strength, Janet planted her hand in the middle of his chest and pushed him back down on the bed. "Major Carter is here," she said. "She was found in surprisingly better shape than you. Now if you don't stay in that bed, I swear I'm going to strap you to it."
He frowned and gave her a very half-hearted salute with his IV-free hand.
"Jack, do you remember anything?" Jacob asked seriously.
Jack's brow furrowed in thought. He cringed, as if catching a snippet of a particularly bad memory, but quickly shook his head. If possible, he seemed to pale even more. "Not … Not much," he replied.
"Okay, this is enough for now," Janet said firmly. "Colonel O'Neill needs his rest. There will be plenty of time to talk later."
"Really, Jack," Jacob pressed, trying to get in one last thing before Janet booted him out of the room. "Anything at all would be a great help to us. The name of the goa'uld that captured you."
Jack's brow furrowed again.
"Out!" Janet ordered, wrapping her hand around General Carter's arm and pulling him toward the door.
Jacob stopped at the door, taking one last look at Jack.
"Satish," Jack finally rasped.
"Doctor?" General Hammond asked from the head of the table. "Is Colonel O'Neill still unconscious?"
"Sir," Janet said, addressing not only General Hammond, but also Daniel, Teal'c and General Carter, "after initially waking, Colonel O'Neill has been asleep for the last twelve hours, but I think that's a very good sign. It's a natural sleep and I expect he will probably be waking shortly. We've been monitoring his vital signs very closely and I have hope that he'll make a full recovery."
"Jack should be fine."
Hammond looked at Jacob. He had spoken, but the words seemed to come from far away and even now, he looked lost in thought. "I take it that the name Colonel O'Neill gave you meant something."
Finally looking at General Hammond, Jacob nodded.
"Satish," Daniel supplied, "is a Hindu name. It's sometimes associated with Shiva, the god of both destruction and resurrection."
"Jacob," Hammond pressed. "Does this mean anything to you?"
Jacob nodded. "You'll get a full briefing, George. I promise. But first I need to talk to my daughter."
Jacob walked into Sam's lab unannounced. "Jack should be fine," he said.
Startled, she looked up from the mission briefing she was reading and nodded. "That's great," she said softly, hoping he wouldn't notice all of her fingernails bitten down to the quick.
Jacob sighed, shaking his head as he leaned back against the wall. "Which briefing are you reading?" he asked. "The one where Loki tried to clone Jack?"
Sam flushed, startled that her father obviously knew more than she had suspected.
"A significant step forward on the evolutionary path," Jacob said sadly. "That's what Loki said, isn't it?"
"Yes," she confirmed, taking a deep breath.
He closed his eyes tightly. "Oh, god, Sam, I'm so sorry," he said wearily. "I'm so sorry this had to happen to you and Jack."
She opened her mouth to say something, but no words would come. Tears streamed down her cheeks and she snapped her mouth shut again. Jacob stepped forward, intending to hug her, but she danced backward off her stool. He immediately stopped. Frantically, she wiped at her tears with the back of her hands, fighting for composure. "Does he ... ?"
"He's still asleep," Jacob said, trying to ignore how much her running from him hurt. "I spoke to him very briefly. He doesn't remember much right now. Probably won't for a while, but it will come back."
"But we already know that if a goa'uld doesn't want the host to remember anything-" Sam blurted in a rush, grasping at any cover.
"Satish wouldn't have kept anything from Jack," Jacob informed her with finality. "He wants Jack to have those memories. He needs Jack to have those memories. It's what he does. It's the trauma, right now, that's preventing Jack from remembering all of it, but trust me, Sam. When he heals, all of the memories will come back."
She shook her head frantically. "No," she chanted over and over, backing up until her back hit the wall and then sliding down it to huddle on the concrete floor, her arms wrapped tightly around her legs.
Cautiously, Jacob crept nearer until he could crouch down in front of her. "Sam, this is crazy. No one would expect you to do this. Jack would never ask you to do this."
She shook her head, not meeting his gaze as tears still streamed freely down her cheeks. "Physiologically advanced enough to carry and utilize data from the Ancient repository of knowledge," Sam reiterated from memory. "An impossibility for any human being even a generation ago."
Jacob grabbed her arms, shaking her hard. "Sam!" he snapped, finally succeeding in getting her to meet his gaze. "This is insanity. No one. I mean no one expects you to do this. Forget the advancement of the species. We've got that damn clone on the Air Force payroll. Let him worry about it."
She looked at her father's face, at the worry and tension etched on his features and something inside her softened. She smiled gently, one of her hands coming up to touch his cheek. "Satish meant to destroy me. To destroy us," she said quietly. "I can't let him do that."
Jack was awake and watching Jacob very warily as he stepped into the room. Jacob had the most absurd desire to smile. Jack looked like he expected him to strangle him. Obviously he'd gotten a good portion of his memories back. It would have been endearing if it all wasn't so damn horrible.
"It feels real, doesn't it?"
"Come again?" Jack asked, arching an eyebrow.
"The memories," Jacob said, taking a seat on the stool next to Jack's bed. "I have 'em too. From Selmack's previous hosts. I gotta tell you it's a little weird, but I swear I remember being a fifteen year old girl living on Menroth four hundred years ago like it was yesterday."
"Well that's … odd," Jack finally said, completely lost.
"I remember it because Selmack remembers it," Jacob explained. "The memories aren't mine. I wasn't there. I wasn't in charge. But it feels like me."
Jack took a deep breath and started fidgeting with the tape on his IV. "Oh," he said meaningfully. "I guess you must know the whole story then." He looked up, wary again, at the man he respected and cared for like family.
Jacob sighed. "I pieced the story together," he said. "Sam has been pretty short on the details. After you gave me the name of the goa'uld, I was able to get most of it."
Jack was quiet for a long time before he said, "You talk to her?"
Nodding, Jacob said, "She's a mess. Satish has a wicked reputation and it's well earned. He really did a number on the two of you."
Jack sighed. "Yeah."
"She's pregnant," Jacob offered.
Jack's head snapped toward him. "What?" he demanded.
Jacob's lips pursed together. "I'm overstepping my bounds and Sam will be royally pissed at me, but knowing her, the kid would be old enough to drive before she ever mentioned it to you. Unless you strap her down to a chair and slap a Tok'ra memory recall device on her, she isn't real forthcoming with the details."
Jack almost laughed at that, but somehow the corresponding desire to throw up evened it out. Carter was pregnant. "Fuck," he cursed under his breath.
"I didn't want you blindsided with this at a briefing," Jacob told him. "I figured you'd need some time to sort it out."
Jack nodded. "Thanks," he said, almost meaning it. Jacob didn't want him blindsided at a briefing, that meant … "So everyone knows?"
Shaking his head, Jacob said, "It's common knowledge at the SGC that Sam was beat to hell and that you had some sort of disease. George and Dr. Fraiser know that Sam was raped, though I figure Daniel and Teal'c must suspect. Probably Mackenzie too. Only George and Janet know she's pregnant."
Jacob paused and took a deep breath.
"None of them know yet that Satish used your body to do it."
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