Pleas and Threats
A/N: I don’t do a lot of these but I got a request so here it goes. This story, the first seven chapters or so were written as one very long 100+ page version of my ideas and then it slowly took shape of a feasible story. But I realized (after I had divided all the chapters out into shorter words docs) that my usual 15-30 page chapters weren’t coming together. So if some of these ‘suspense’ places seem a little unkind – for once they aren’t intentional.
A/N2: Alexandria “Lexi” Martin is a nearly 13 year old Slayer, within her resides parts of the souls of Charlie O’Neill and the Slayer India (who died to activate Buffy). Her birthday is June 29th, she has curly blonde hair, and true gray eyes. Her family was killed just after she became a Slayer (at age 8), she is one of the youngest activated. She has been dreaming of the Ancient city of Atlantis for as long as she can remember – her playmate in those dreams was Candrima. Her unique Slayer ability is to work out puzzles and problems by watching and studying, she often uses these to find an opponent’s weakness in a fight.
Disclaimer: See Chapter 1
Chapter 3: Pleas and Threats
Telik frowned at Dawn, “what’s wrong?” he whispered.
“What do you mean?”
He pointed to where her hand was rubbing her sternum, “you’ve done that three times in the last hour.”
“I think Ronon was knocked out… or he’s blocking me…” she told him.
“Which is more likely?” Henderson asked as they stopped in the small clearing that was about two hundred yards from the ‘Gate.
“I don’t know,” she frowned.
“Are you blocking him?” Lorne suggested.
“I can’t, he can lock me out but if he’s broadcasting I get all of it,” she shook her head.
“Well we’re on our way back,” Telik pointed, “so twenty minutes and you’ll know.”
She nodded. They had been able to communicate with the locals and invited to participate in a ritual of new friends. They had gathered a bit of information and a solid idea of how their society stood politically, socially, in technology, and Wraith defenses. A few minutes of walking passed before Dawn grabbed Brian’s wrist and twisted until she could read his watch. 1515 hours.
“I would have told you,” the lieutenant told her as he took back his arm.
“Sorry,” she said as she resisted the urge to leave the guys behind and run for the Stargate. It was the why of it all that made her feel off.
“Dawn,” Lorne said as he looked at her, “go.”
She barely spared him a glance as she took off at a flat out run. She punched in the address and waited as the ‘Gate engaged, she sent her IDC through. Only the knowledge that running through she’d be shot slowed her pace. She arrived just in time to see Woolsey and Sheppard enter the conference room.
“Where is Major Lorne?” Banks asked.
“They’re a six minutes behind me,” she told the tech. But she didn’t stop as she ordered Candrima to open to the doors.
“What happened?” she demanded walking through, only then noticing Glinda had caught up since running off the moment they arrived off-world.
“Dawn,” Teyla said quietly, “Ronon joined Lexi and me on M4R-973. On our way back to the ‘Gate we were going to help an unconscious cloaked figure… it was really Tyre.”
“The traitor?” Dawn asked, remembering one of the memories from Ronon’s past, a nightmare she’d had a few times on Earth. Woolsey looked surprised at her choice of words.
“Sit down Dawn,” John said quietly.
“Don’t try to handle me John,” she said.
“I’m not,” he said, “but if you want to know what we have you’re going to have to let this meeting continue.”
Grudgingly she moved from the door way and leaned against the wall.
Woolsey continued to look at her, but John just made a gesture to ignore her.
“The Daedalus confirms the results of your preliminary search,” the bespectacled man said. “There’s no sign of Ronon’s subcutaneous transmitter anywhere on 973.”
“He’s still alive,” John told the room. At Woolsey’s look he explained, “If Ronon was dead,” he pointed to Dawn, “she would be too.”
“There would be nothing,” she said eerily.
John looked at her a long moment.
“He didn’t kill me or Lexi,” Teyla said, “it would have been safer to leave no witnesses. Perhaps he still possesses his Satedan sense of honor.”
“Didn’t stop him from ambushing you,” McKay argued.
“Solen Sincha,” Dawn said with a look at Teyla.
“Who?” Woolsey asked.
“A survivor of the attack on Sateda,” the Athosian explained. “Ronon and I encountered him on a trade mission to Belkan two years ago.”
“What are the chances he’s still there?” McKay asked.
“Only one way to find out,” he rose, along with Teyla and Rodney. Dawn straightened and made her way towards the door.
John turned back as Woolsey cleared his throat. “Mr. Woolsey permission to go off-world?”
“Granted,” he said after a paused.
“Great!” And John headed out again.
“Ms Summers,” Woolsey addressed her, “I’m expecting your team’s debriefing, in ten minutes.”
Dawn’s eyes went cold. It was Lexi, who had been at the door, who stepped in.
“Of all the things you’ve ever said Mr. Woolsey,” the young girl said strictly, “that was by far the most uncalled for. This isn’t just about Dawn’s husband or their teammate,” she gesture where Sheppard had stopped outside the doors, “this is about Ronon Dex who has taken bullets for this city and them, and nearly been killed on a dozen occasions since he joined this expedition. If he dies, Dawn does too, along with Glinda and a part of Candrima, this city. You want to flaunt your authority, feel free, any other time.”
Lexi shoved Dawn out of the conference leaving Woolsey and John’s team struck silent. They watched as the door slats slammed shut. Lorne and his team were standing at the top of the stairs.
“Go,” Lexi said.
John nodded once. Quickly and quietly Dawn and Teyla explained the situation to Lorne, Henderson, and Telik. Dawn felt her heart race and her knees drop as Ronon awoke in her head.
‘Teyla! Lexi!’ his voice reverberated.
‘They’re fine,’ Dawn assured him. ‘Where are you?’
‘Pixie? I don’t know. But Tyre is here.’
“What’s wrong with her?” McKay asked.
“Nothing,” Henderson said remembering when they were onboard the hive ship months ago. “Ronon woke up.”
Dawn looked up, “we need to leave. Tyre plans on feeding him to the Wraith to get his reward.”
The Stargate engaged. “Go!” Lexi told them, “We’ll deal with things here.”
Dawn nodded once and took off through the ‘Gate, John, Rodney, and Teyla right behind her. Teyla led the way through the village asking after Solen.
When they finally found him he smelled solely of booze.
“Solen Sincha?” Teyla asked.
“Go away,” he man groaned, “Can’t you see I’m trying to sleep?”
Dawn pulled out the knife she had, on two occasions, stabbed Ronon with. She used enough force to stab it through the table, two inches from Solen’s head.
“We need your help,” John said as he sat down.
“Ronon Dex is in trouble,” Rodney explained.
“Ronon Dex is always in trouble,” the man sat up straight looking at the group.
“His life is in danger,” the scientist tried again.
“Again, what else is new?” Solen studied Dawn’s frozen eyes. “What kind of trouble has he gotten himself into this time?”
“Tyre,” Dawn said the word slowly, darkly.
“The former Wraith worshipper,” Solen nodded, “disappointed his masters and now isn’t getting any of the goods. Anyone I know would kill him on sight. It’s just a matter of time.”
“He was once a proud Satedan,” Teyla argued kindly, “not unlike yourself. He was subjected to unimaginable torture. Perhaps he had no choice.”
“There’s always a choice. He could have chosen death like a true Satedan,” Solen hissed.
“Any idea where we can find him?” John asked.
“If I knew he’d be dead.”
“Let’s say you contact us when you hear something?” he offered, “We’ll save you the trip.”
“All right,” he raised his bottle in toast as Dawn pulled her knife from the table. Another look at Dawn made him pause, “what’s that?”
John looked at the Key and frowned. He stood, “Dawn?”
“What?” she said carefully.
“What is this?” he touched the left of her neck, just above her necklace.
“It looks like Ronon’s,” Rodney commented.
“It wasn’t there a moment ago,” Solen told them. “It’s a Satedan military rank.”
“The same as my husband’s?” she asked John uncertainly.
“Identical,” Teyla nodded.
“Husband?” Solen looked at her. “You married Ronon Dex?” He paused, “Ronon Dex married?”
“A few months ago,” Rodney explained. “Their life forces are tied together. If Ronon dies so does his wife.”
Solen Sincha stood, “I will see what I can find.”
Dawn fiddled with the spot on her neck as they walked out of the tavern.
“What is that all about?” Rodney asked.
“This isn’t the first time you’ve done this,” John told Dawn. “You took on his injury.”
“But why would you make a mark identical to his?” Teyla asked.
Dawn shrugged, rubbing the tattoo in thought.
“Is there anything more we can do?” Rodney looked at the team as he dialed the ‘Gate.
“We don’t have anymore contacts with these kinds of connections,” John said.
Dawn followed them through the Stargate. She stopped at the bottom of the stairs. “Wraith…”
“What?” Teyla asked.
“Tyre called the Wraith in to turn Ro – AHHHHHHHHHHH!” the ear-piercing scream took everyone’s attention. How the young woman managed to stay upright was impossible to determine.
Woolsey and Lorne’s team came out from the conference room. Lexi and Jennifer appeared from the infirmary. A lot of people covered their ears or took a few steps back.
“What is going on?” Woolsey yelled.
“Something is wrong with Ronon,” John yelled back.
“And she’s screaming because she can’t block out his pain,” Telik told them.
“I could sedate her,” Jennifer approached with a needle.
“No!” Lexi yelled, “You can’t!”
“She’s in pain!” Rodney argued.
“No, Ronon is,” Teyla explained.
“If you knock her out she won’t be able to keep him intact,” Lexi told them. “If she’s unconscious she can’t communicate with him.”
“It sounds like she’s being murdered,” Henderson said.
“Ronon is,” John said. “Let’s move her.”
“Where?” Lorne asked.
“An isolation room,” Jennifer suggested. The men nodded.
“Dawn,” John said in her ear, “we’re going to move you. Lorne and I, okay?”
Dawn’s eyes were closed, her head tilted towards the ceiling. Her only response was to squeeze John’s arm.
When they reached the room Lorne ordered Dawn to sit. She complied. Then suddenly her screams stopped. There were tears on her face as she lowered her head. She looked at John. “No drugs,” she told him, “no restraints. They aren’t going to stop.”
‘Ronon,’ she said, ‘where are you?’
‘Stay out Pixie,’ he ordered sharply and blocked her. It was like shutting the door on everything. Normally she could still feel his surface thoughts and if he was physically hurt.
‘Ronon?’ she asked again, the connection in her soul as still there in the barest form.
“He’s blocking me,” she told them, “completely.” She flinched, “they’ve started again.”
“Why wasn’t he blocking you before?”
“He couldn’t get to our connection fast enough,” she told him. “He didn’t realize I’d feel it so… fully.”
“Are you going to be okay?” Lorne asked slowly.
“They won’t kill him,” she stated. “They’re going to torture him until he breaks, or until they determine he’s too much trouble.”
“Any more screaming?” John asked.
“No, not if he keeps this up.”
Lorne nodded, “you okay to talk?”
“I’ll listen,” she said.
“No,” John shook his head, “you’re going to go back to your room and sleep.”
“Not going to happen,” Dawn told him. “Not now, not until he’s safe.”
“This isn’t going to help him,” Lorne said.
“And nightmares aren’t going to help me,” she looked at both men, “I can’t stick my head in the sand.”
John looked at Lorne, who just nodded at Dawn’s words.
“Come on,” Lorne stood and offered her a hand.
“Just keep me far away from Woolsey,” she warned. “I’m likely to kill him without laying a finger on him.”
“Promise,” Lorne assured her.
“Anybody know where Lexi learned to talk to Woolsey like that?” John asked.
“Who can guilt a man better than a child?” the Key replied mysteriously.
Throughout the night, different members of the expedition kept Dawn out on the mess hall balcony. First Telik and Henderson until Teyla joined them. Teyla retired when Jennifer and Lorne appeared. Rodney excused himself early in the evening. Lorne and Jennifer fell asleep leaning against each other around 3:30 in the morning. Dawn looked at them and gave a smile, but she let them sleep on.
At five Lexi joined them. She sat down next to Dawn as the moons sank into the horizon.
“How long have they been here?” she asked.
“Two or so, they’ve been like that the last two hours.”
“I’m sorry,” Lexi said after a few minutes.
“I ran…” was the barely audible response. “I could have stopped Tyre from taking him, but I ran…”
Dawn sighed, “Tyre would have just stunned you.” She looked at the girl, “what did your instincts say to do?”
“Run,” she said, “hope that he gave chase and I could find a weapon.”
“Then you did exactly as you’ve been taught,” Dawn told her, “Exactly what we would want you to do. ‘Cause if you ask anybody around here, getting stunned sucks.”
“But he hit me,” she said, “at least once.”
“Hurt, didn’t it?”
“No,” Lexi shook her head, “felt like I had static charge. Like walking across carpet with socks on, it made my hairs stand on end…”
Dawn frowned, “are you sure?”
“Blue energy hit me as I turned to run.”
“And you didn’t feel a thing?”
“Nothing,” Dawn said and looked back at the lightening sky.
“Have you slept at all?”
“No,” she shook her head, “he’s blocking me but the feeding and reviving has gone on and off all night.”
“I’m going to grab some food,” the girl stood. “And you’re going to eat whatever I bring back.”
Dawn nodded absently.
Rodney joined John the next morning inside the mess hall.
“You’re up early,” Rodney commented.
“It’s nearly ten,” John frowned at him.
“Why are you eating in here?”
“Dawn and Lexi fell asleep early this morning out on the balcony,” he ate a fruit piece.
“I didn’t sleep at all,” he complained, “Spent all night thinking about the Ronon situation.”
“You got anything?”
“Nothing. I tried everything,” he shook his head, “we need a fresh perspective. Let’s go over what we know.”
“According to Solen, Tyre’s on the run. He is alone otherwise there would have been more in on the ambush.”
“I can think of at least two hundred planets great for hiding,” he sniped, “Where’d you like to start?”
“How about Sarif Sur?” Lorne suggested.
“What?” John looked at him
“Solen sent a message. He heard Tyre and Ronon are hold up on a planet called Sarif Sur,” Lorne gave a small smile.
“Major, get your team and gear up,” the Colonel ordered.
Dawn watched as Tyre crouched in front of Ronon. Her husband was tied to the chair, exhausted.
“There’s no point in holding on,” Tyre tells him. “You’re just putting off the inevitable. It’s better if you just accept it.”
“Better for you,” Ronon spat. “The Wraith cut you off and this is your way back in… me as a sacrifice.”
“No,” the traitor said with a shake of his head.
“You are not the man I risked my life for,” his pain and tears made Dawn move forward. “You are a traitor to the memory of our people. You have no honor!”
Dawn kneeled down next to Ronon. She reached out and wiped a tear away from his face. He looked up at her, “Pixie?”
The door slammed open to reveal a Wraith.
Dawn gasped as she sat up straight in the chair. She was out on the balcony, Lexi next to her asleep. She moved quickly around the table and out of the mess. She raced for the ‘Gate room just in time to see Lorne and Sheppard’s teams exit the armory.
“Sarif Sur,” she told them.
“We know,” John said, “how did you know?”
“Dream? Astral projection?” she shook her head, “I’m not sure. You weren’t going to tell me?”
“We tried to wake you and Lexi,” John defended, “neither of you budged.”
Dawn could see no deception, “are we going?”
“Now,” Telik confirmed.
“Good,” she looked at her various knives still in their proper places. She took her lock picks out and deftly took down and redid her hair.
The ‘Gate activated and she followed Sheppard and Lorne through. They arrived on the outside of the village. Dawn looked around, “he’s not here.”
“Are you sure?” Rodney asked, “You said he blocked you out.”
“I can’t find him like he finds me,” she confirmed, “but there is only one life-force here and it’s not Ronon’s.”
“Where is it?” John asked.
Dawn pointed, “This way.” She led them to where a small house was. The door stood open. Lorne moved forward and checked Tyre’s pulse.
“Barely there,” he reported, “we need to move or lose him.”
“Where’s Ronon?” Rodney asked.
“Good question,” John said.
The Key moved forward and healed Tyre. But the wounds were superficial the problem was deeper.
“Dawn?” John said uneasily, “you can’t kill him.”
She ignored him and lifted the man like a sack of potatoes. “Only he knows where Ronon is.”
“Don’t you think…” Rodney was cut off by Henderson.
“I’ll go to the ‘Gate and dial Atlantis,” he said, “have Keller ready for a new patient.”
Dawn nodded and headed for the door, where everyone was standing.
“What?” she asked.
“Isn’t he heavy?” Teyla asked.
“No,” she said her back straight, feet braced. “We need to go, now.”
The teams moved.
“Is it bad that I want to beat him to a pulp?” Lexi asked from the entrance to the infirmary.
“Depends,” Dawn replied, “Is it the girl or the Slayer who wants it?”
“Both,” the girl replied instantly, “violently.”
“Still bad but understandable.”
“I want it worse,” she admitted Ronon’s heartbroken face replaying in her mind.
“But Brian said you healed him.”
“He’s our only clue. He dies and so do our chances of finding Ronon…”
“But the chemical withdrawal isn’t helping,” the girl guessed.
“No, it’s not,” she turned, “but it serves him right.” She walked away.
Lexi shook her head and entered the infirmary. Jennifer is standing looking at the screen.
“Staring at that won’t speed up his detox,” she told the doctor.
“I know,” she watched it anyway.
Lexi studied the once-warrior, “you need to move him.”
“What?” Jennifer turned to her.
“Besides the fact that there are a few Slayers that want him dead?” she told her, “He’s going to break those bindings. You need to isolate him and get better restraints, like you’d use on Ronon.”
Jennifer looked unsure.
“It’s the only way Dr. Keller.”
“Please! You’re killing me! PLEASE!” Tyre yelled from the isolation room.
“Can’t we give him something for the pain?” Woolsey asked.
“He’d be more comfortable but the recovery would slow,” Jennifer told them.
“No,” John said, “this needs to be over as quickly as possible.”
In the mess he saw Dawn out on the balcony. She was quiet but tears ran down her face.
“I’m losing him John,” she said blankly.
“No,” she choked, “he’s giving over.”
“He’d never do that,” John told her sternly.
“Neither would three of his comrades,” she stated darkly.
John looked out at the ocean. When he looked back he noticed her arm, “When did those come in?”
“A few hours ago,” she looked at the bands of triangles along her left forearm.
“Can you reach him?”
“No,” she shook her head, “something, more than just him, is blocking me.”
“When was the last time you ate?” John changed subjects.
He sighed heavily and stood. Five minutes later he returned with a loaded tray of food. He sat down right next to her. “Eat,” he ordered.
She didn’t look away from the ocean as she grabbed a fruit and sank her teeth into it. For nearly an hour John sat there watching as she made her way through the tray of food. When she was done he just sat there with her, watching, waiting, for something…
That ‘something’ came nearly four days later when Tyre requested an audience with him.
“He’s been awake for ten minutes,” Jennifer explained. “He said he wants to talk to you.”
They walked into the isolation room. Dawn was sitting in a chair at the end of Tyre’s bed.
“Dawn?” John asked.
“He’s gone,” she told him, “swallowed by the black… nothing left.”
The Colonel swallowed and looked at Tyre.
“I know where they’ve taken Ronon,” the weak patient announced.
“Can you give us a ‘Gate address?”
“Better: I’ll lead you right into the heart of the facility,” Tyre told him.
“You’re still recovering,” he said uncertainly.
“Colonel, please!” he pleaded. “Let me help you get Ronon back.”
John and Woolsey argued in the hall. Dawn stood listening to them without any reaction.
“He seems rational,” John told the man. “Says he wants to help us.”
“I say we trust him only as much as we have to. Use his intel,” Woolsey determined, “but he stays here, under guard.”
“Must go,” Dawn said. “The w’amitre must go,” she repeated.
“Summers?” John asked.
“Take him, don’t have to trust. Just take,” she replied to him unseeingly. “Remain here and all die.”
John nodded, “see.”
“She’s raving,” Woolsey argued.
Dawn moved forward hauling Woolsey up by the neck, “see things, feel things, dying… only thing left is darkness. Take or die.”
“Let him go,” John said gently from behind her.
She let him go, “no paperwork.”
“Thank you,” he said. Looking at where Woolsey landed. “I trust her with our lives,” he declared, “even if I don’t trust Tyre she just gave me the answers.”
“Fine,” Woolsey said. “Lorne’s team will be accompanying you.”
“Good,” he started walking away. Dawn followed him through the City to the ‘Gate room and the armory. Both teams loaded up but Dawn sat on the bench. She pulled the picks from her hair and let it fall down.
“Dawn?” Telik asked when she clipped them through the wrist protector on her right wrist.
“No Kenny,” she answered.
“What do you mean?” McKay looked at her.
“I stay, he can find me,” she looked at them, “risk. Target. Beacon.”
“Can’t block,” she said.
Teyla nodded, “she’s right John.”
“Stay. Wait,” she promised. “Not kill idiot.”
“Idiot?” Lorne asked.
“She means Woolsey,” John explained. “Let’s get moving.”
Dawn followed them out to where marines were waiting with Tyre. She walked to stand in front of him, Telik beside her.
“We understand,” she said. She offered her arm in Satedan tradition.
Tyre looked at her, amazed, he looked at the tattoos. “They’re just like Ronon’s.”
“Husband,” she said.
“Lucky him,” Tyre took her arm.
Dawn pulled him close so she could whisper in his ear, “you are forgiven sa’wrent.” When she let him go there was shock in his face, and the first traces of pride.
“I’ll bring him back,” Tyre said quietly, “on my honor.”
Dawn nodded once and walked from the room.
“What was that?” Lorne asked Telik.
“I don’t know,” the lieutenant replied, “but I think it was good.”
Lexi followed Dawn around a few hours later.
“Shadow Slayer,” the Key accused quietly.
“Well I’m worried about you,” Lexi admitted.
“Well it could be your amazing language skills, or the threats to Woolsey,” she shrugged. “Or it could be that you may die at any moment and I’d like to know so we don’t spend a month looking for you.”
“No dying today,” she replied, “except w’amitre.”
“Just one,” she said.
“You are mixing languages again,” Lexi told her back, “it’s not Ancient.”
“Satedan,” Dawn offered.
“Of course,” the girl rolled her eyes.
“They’re coming back,” Dawn turned abruptly barely avoiding a collision with Lexi.
“Okay I know you’re all mystic, but your cryptic seer stuff sucks.”
Dawn didn’t pay her any mind as she made her way to the Stargate. She stopped at the door as the Jumper appeared and headed into the Jumper Bay.
“Shall we follow?” Lexi suggested.
“End,” she told her and again headed elsewhere.
They ended up on the observation deck overlooking the isolation room. The nurses where making some preparations. Dawn sat down at the perfect angle to see the bed, but hide from anyone in the observation room.
Lexi watched as Ronon was wheeled in, he was unconscious. They transferred him to the bed, restraining him as they went. Dawn grabbed Lexi’s leg, gesturing for her to sit. She did. It was nearly three hours before anyone entered the observation room.
“What kind of time frame are we looking at?” Woolsey asked Jennifer.
“I can’t tell you,” she apologized. “There is so much of the enzyme running through him that his body can’t process it. When it does he’s going to come down, hard.”
“SHEPPARD!” Ronon hollered.
Dawn watched the pain around the Colonel, “I’m going to talk to him.” All three exited the observation room. A few minutes later John entered the isolation room.
“There he is,” Ronon grinned and sat up in his restraints. “Hey, buddy.”
“‘Buddy’?” Sheppard asked.
“How long are you planning on keeping me prisoner?”
“Until your head is clear.”
“I am clear.”
“It’s going to get rough,” John told him. “But we’re going to get your through this.
“It’s not going to work,” Ronon growled. “Either kill me, or let me go. I won’t come after you. Or Atlantis. Tell Tyre I’ll leave him alone.
John shook his head, “Tyre’s dead. He sacrificed himself to take out the Wraith lab.”
“Yeah, he was a traitor.”
“No,” Sheppard said sadly, “he was a good friend. We all are. You’ll realize soon enough.” He headed for the door.
“Kill me or set me free,” he yelled at the soldier’s back. “Sheppard! You kill me or set me free! SHEPPARD!” As the door shut he swung his gaze towards the observation room. “Dawn,” he screamed.
The Key shot a hand out at the glass sealing in Ronon’s screams, even while the emotions echoed in her head and her heart.
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