Assault on Langara
Daniel had to admit, after spending the last couple of days fighting to stay awake for fear he'd never wake up, it was a relief to be back at work after a good night's sleep, without any insomnia-related issues to deal with into the bargain; he supposed the fact that they'd never actually fallen asleep helped in that regard, as they hadn't actually experienced what would happen to them if they'd passed out…
"Well, rise and shine," Landry said as he walked into the briefing room, smiling at the combined SG-1/SG-M teams sitting casually around the table. "How are you all feeling?"
"Rested and raring to go, sir," Mitchell said with a smile.
"I assume Dr. Lam got you up to speed?" Landry asked, as he sat down at the table himself.
"Yes, sir," Sam said, nodding in confirmation. "Between the sample they collected from Teal'c and Lupin's team, and the research Doctor Reimer, Minister Granger and I conducted, they were able to produce a serum that effectively isolated the parasite and starved it out."
"Simple, but effective," Hermione said with a smile.
"And I really have to thank you for that," Mitchell said, looking over at her with a warm smile. "If you guys and your magic hadn't been there, we'd probably have been hanging around there until we were hallucinating from sleep deprivation until we managed to catch that thing, assuming we ever even saw it…"
He sighed in frustration. "Still, probably wouldn't have made much difference in the end; the cave was a dead end. We went through all that for nothing…"
"Actually, I wouldn't say that just yet," Daniel said, looking reassuringly at the rest of the team. "I did find one reference in the library that might be useful; Atlantis."
"Atlantis?" Hagrid said, looking at Daniel in surprise. "Ye mean… the alien city yeh tol' us abou'?"
"Exactly," Daniel said, nodding at the gamekeeper. "It might have a history in our world, but I'm guessing that was just a new city they built in homage of the original; the original Atlantis is thousands of years old and was relocated to another galaxy centuries ago."
"You think the location of Merlin's weapon is hidden in the Atlantis database?" Sam asked.
"I think it's worth checking out," Daniel said, before he looked over at Hermione with a smile. "And you're welcome to come along, naturally."
?" Hermione said, looking eagerly at Daniel. "You're serious
"Well, we've only found out so much about what's in their databanks after over two years of research, but given what you've found in the past-" Daniel began, only for further conversation to be cut short as the Stargate suddenly began to dial, followed by the familiar alarms indicating an unscheduled offworld activation.
"What?" Hermione said, looking anxiously at the Stargate through the observation window as the chevrons began to light up, thoughts of Atlantis forgotten. "What's going on?"
"I don't know; nobody's scheduled to be checking in any time soon…" Landry said, turning to look solemnly at the Stargate as it finished dialling and the familiar 'kawoosh' emerged from the new wormhole. As the iris closed in front of the wormhole, the two teams followed General Landry down to the control room, where Sergeant Harriman was anxiously examining a panel in front of him.
"What is it, Sergeant?" Landry said, looking firmly at the man sitting at the dialling computer.
"It… well, from what I can tell, it's a call for help from Langara," Harriman said, looking back at the rest of the team.
"Langara?" Daniel and Sam said simultaneously, looking anxiously at each other.
"Is it a Prior?" Mitchell asked, ignoring the puzzled stares being exchanged by SG-M; Langara was one topic they hadn't really discussed in detail, considering how complicated it had been for Daniel in particular, but they could worry about getting everyone up-to-date once they'd established the current threat.
"Worse," Harriman said, his expression grim as he turned to look at them. "The message is only text- it sounds like they don't want to waste time setting up a video connection-, but they're describing a large number of figures in black robes carrying small sticks that shot off a variety of energy bursts with varying effects."
…" Daniel said, his usual linguistic knowledge virtually forgotten as he looked anxiously over at Sam and Teal'c. "The Death Eaters are on Langara…"
"But how could they know about it?" Sam asked, looking in confusion at the archaeologist. "They don't exactly advertise the presence of naquadria, and we haven't told-"
"Voldemort," Daniel groaned, slapping his head in frustration.
"Voldemort?" Tonks repeated, looking at Harry in confusion. "What-?"
"When I linked with him to try and find out how he'd come back to life, he must have managed to access some of my
memories," Daniel explained, his expression grim as he looked at the Stargate. "I was trying to focus on getting into his mind, so I might have let down my own mental barriers long enough for him to take a look at my mind; Langara's not exactly something I can easily forget, so it wouldn't have been hard for him to find it."
"We do not need to assume that you are responsible, Daniel Jackson," Teal'c said, looking pointedly at his friend. "There are other explanations for Voldemort's discovery of the value of Langara; we cannot forget that Ba'al was also aware that there was something of interest about that planet, and we have no definitive information regarding the extent of his knowledge, to say nothing of the possibility that he and Voldemort have made contact."
"Ba'al?" Fred said, looking at Teal'c in surprise. "Uh… didn't we kill him already?"
"We have killed two Ba'als since you joined us, but he has created many clones of himself; it is possible that Voldemort captured one of these clones and was able to interrogate him for information," Teal'c corrected the younger wizard.
"Clones?" Hermione said, looking at Teal'c in surprise. "He cloned
"Man's got a big ego and limited options since the System Lords collapsed; we're thinking he created the clones so that he'd have a security measure to carry out as many plans as he wants without having to worry about actually being in danger himself," Mitchell explained.
"Uh… what are 'clones', exactly?" Tonks asked.
"Essentially, an exact duplicate of another being, with all of their memories and mannerisms," Hermione explained, looking over at the metamorphagus. "Muggle science has been working on various cloning experiments, but we've only managed to clone a sheep so far; I'm guessing that alien technology has… gone a bit further?"
"We know an entire race who've survived this long by constantly cloning themselves; transfer their minds into new bodies when they're about to die, things like that," Mitchell confirmed. "Ba'al's not gone that far yet- we're pretty sure each clone's basically independent, even if they seem to follow the original's cue-, but the point still stands."
"Damn…" Fred said, looking over at George. "Making more of yourself… Now that
"We can discuss the cloning thing later; right now, what's interesting about this… Langara that would make the Death Eaters want it?" Hermione asked, even as the curious expression on her face as she looked at Daniel made it clear that she'd have further questions for him later.
"Naquadria," Sam said grimly.
"What's that?" Lupin asked, looking curiously at the astrophysicist.
"Essentially, a more powerful but more unstable form of the naquadah we've more traditionally used as a power source," Sam replied. "It has far more potential power than naquadah, but we've never been able to find a way to use that power safely due to its inability to be safely channelled; it was created by a Goa'uld experiment years ago and the Goa'uld that created it actually blew himself up and nearly destroyed the planet when he attempted it on a large scale, and we've obviously never felt comfortable trying to make it ourselves. We've used it to some degree in some of our prototype generators, and it has some potential as a weapon power source, but the dangers of harvesting it have limited how much we can do."
"So… you're thinking Voldemort wants Langara for this… naquadria stuff?" Fred asked.
"Considering our previous observations on naquadah-magic interaction, that's certainly possible," Sam said. "After all, it is
more powerful than naquadah; maybe if he could figure out the right way to use it-"
"Or at least what he believes
to be the right way to harness it," Daniel pointed out; Voldemort might be intelligent even without the Goa'uld, but Dumbledore had made the point that there were things Voldemort would never understand often enough, even if this wasn't quite the same as the previously-listed points.
"True," Sam said, nodding in acknowledgement of Daniel's point before she continued. "The point is, if Voldemort can channel work out a means of channelling naquadria's energy through his own magic, he could increase his abilities to a power where it would be virtually impossible to stop him, to say nothing of what he could do if he shared that power with the other Death Eaters…"
"How likely is that?" Hermione asked. "I mean, if you've been working on naquadria for a while and been unable to crack how to use it safely when you know
what you're working with-"
"We don't know enough about the genetic memory of Voldemort's Goa'uld to know what it might be capable of, to say nothing of how little we know about Hestia's available Goa'uld," Sam pointed out. "The Goa'uld might be parasites, but they're still not completely stupid; if there's any chance that Voldemort has access to the knowledge he'd need to utilise naquadria, we have to stop it."
"Agreed," Landry said grimly, nodding at his two teams. "SG-1, SG-M, suit up and prepare for departure; you have a go as soon as you've got everything together."
"Good," Daniel said, nodding grimly at the general before he looked over at Harriman. "Tell Langara we're on our way; we'll be there as soon as we can."
Even with magic on their side, Mitchell was impressed at how little time it took him and the rest of their team to get everything together in preparation for their trip to Langara. It seemed like only a couple of minutes had passed before the team were hurrying into the gateroom, those who could find appropriately-sized uniforms dressed in black combat fatigues while Hagrid was wearing his usual attire and carrying two staff weapons in his hands (Mitchell couldn't recall how the guy had done with those during practise, but they weren't exactly useless as close-quarter weapons either).
"All right," he said, walking up to the ramp as Harriman dialled the Stargate, looking around at his expanded team. "We all know what we're up against by now, and we know that they've had time to dig themselves in; best thing for us to do right now is get in there and get these guys out of the picture before anything else goes done."
"In other words, hit them until they stay down," Tonks said, grinning in satisfaction. "Sounds good to me."
"Remember," Daniel said, looking over at the rest of the team with a firm stare, "whatever else happens, Voldemort is mine
"You wish to finish what you failed to complete previously?" Teal'c asked, looking curiously at Daniel.
"Let's just say that, even if I'm not sure about the original prophecy, I'd prefer to be safe rather than sorry," Daniel said grimly, before he turned back to the still-dialling Stargate, a cold glare in his eyes that none of the rest of the team liked much.
Regardless of how long their experience was with Harry or Daniel, everyone present knew one thing for certain; when he looked like that, so cold and intense, something bad was going to happen.
As the Stargate activated, the two teams only waited a moment for General Landry to confirm that they had a go before walking through the wormhole in front of them…
Emerging at the other end in a large room with the Stargate at one end and the DHD close by it, but otherwise indistinguishable from a number of warehouses that they'd encountered over the years.
"Where is this?" Fred asked, looking at their surroundings with a sullen expression.
"The Langaran 'gate room," Sam replied, glancing back at the wizards before she turned her attention back to the room before them; she hadn't been here for a while, but she had to acknowledge that the current warehouse was an improvement over the museum archive that the Langaran Stargate had been kept in previously. The facility was still more basic in design than the SGC's own gateroom- unlike Earth, Langara was too busy focusing on improving its own unstable social structure to have a full Stargate program of its own-, but it was at least devoted exclusively to the Stargate, as well as possessing some some thick-looking doors covering the only visible exit, even if they had been blown off their hinges by some force that Sam didn't want to think about. The damage around the room supported the idea that some kind of fight had taken place here recently, such as chunks blasted out of the walls and a few bodies lying on the ground, but there was nothing to suggest that anyone had stayed around afterwards; they might be cloaked, but Sam was going to assume that the Death Eaters had simply been too arrogant to assume they might be followed.
"Damn…" Mitchell said, looking grimly at the damage around them before looking over at the wizards. "Standard Death Eater practise?"
"Make a lot of noise and do a lot of damage as soon as they arrive on the scene?" Lupin said grimly. "It's fairly standard, yes."
"And they stayed secret
operating like this?" Sam asked, looking at the wizards in surprise. "I mean, I know you covered up your presence, but something like this-"
"They generally focused this kind of attack on wizard-only areas- they preferred to establish themselves before going after the muggles-, and even occasions where they went after wizards who lived in muggle areas focused on just attacking them inside the house; there was never a reason to worry about a large-scale cover-up," Tonks explained, even as the wizards moved into a defensive position around SG-1, wands raised in preparation for whatever might come at them next. "OK, everyone; keep an eye out and be ready to take action if you see anything that even hints
there's a Death Eater out there-!"
"Within reason, of course; no point taking out our allies because we were too quick on the draw," Mitchell pointed out, before glancing over at Daniel. "Should we have you take point, or keep you back?"
"Just one of the group at the moment," Daniel said. "We've already dealt with most of the Death Eaters I knew personally, so hopefully the changes will be enough to keep my identity quiet until we're ready; if we can take Voldemort by surprise, we might be able to end this once and for all."
The fact that Daniel Jackson was so willing to kill might have been disturbing under other circumstances- the guy was practically the Jiminy Cricket of the program, after all-, but after everything he'd heard about the guy they were dealing with and what he'd done to Jackson's life, Mitchell definitely wasn't going to blame him.
AN: To anyone wondering, I'm assuming that the Langaran Stargate facility we saw in 'Stargate: Universe' was designed after the Ori were defeated while the Langarans were rebuilding after the war; since Langara hasn't even been attacked by the Ori yet, they have no reason to have constructed it yet, and are probably relying on the lack of knowledge of naquadria to deter unwanted visitors, even if the current peace allowed them to move the Stargate somewhere more secure.
AN 2: OK, we're on the home stretch now- everything coming up will be leading into the final HarryDaniel-VS-Voldemort showdown-, so if anyone has anything they really want to happen before that happens, make yourselves heard and I'll do what I can to incorporate that.