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XSGCOM: Terra from the Deep

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This story is No. 2 in the series "XSGCOM Series: SG-1 meets X-COM". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: SG-1/X-COM Crossover - As old enemies fall by the wayside new ones appear to challenge the Tau'ri and their allies.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Stargate > Non-BtVS/AtS Stories(Current Donor)HotpointFR1819149,39741295131,2323 Jan 103 May 11No

Chapter Fourteen

I own neither Stargate nor the X-COM franchise. No infringement is intended, no profit is to be made and I'm just not worth the hassle of suing anyway unless you want a share of the wages of an underpaid Civil Servant.

Atlantis – Pegasus Galaxy – February 2005

'Doctor Beckett. What exactly do you mean when you say that there is no point in interrogating the majority of the prisoners we took?' Colonel Vaselov asked the expeditions chief medical officer who was sat a few places to his left around the conference room.

'What I'm saying Colonel is that we seem to have accidentally lobotomised most of the Aquatoids we captured on Latira' Beckett replied. 'Specifically those which were struck by zat'nik'tel discharges' he explained. 'The pair which were disabled by Wraith Stunners seem perfectly okay, and the one which was struck by the Tollan weapon appears to be gradually recovering, but the rest have severely impaired higher functions.'

'Since when does a zat cause that kind of damage?' Major Sheppard asked in confusion. 'We've used them against several different species without ever seeing that kind of effect' he noted.

'None of the races we've employed zats against before had a device implanted in their brains like these Aquatoids do' Beckett replied. 'My autopsy found one inside the skull of every alien corpse I dissected and an MRI scan confirms their presence in all of the prisoners as well' he continued. 'Rodney has examined the ones I removed from the cadavers and knows more' he said.

McKay nodded. 'It's a very interesting piece of technology really' he said. 'Basically an partially organic computer-chip which is connected to several different centres of the Aquatoid brain and which probably allows a sort of artificial version of telepathy amongst other functions we'll need to determine' he said.

'Artificial telepathy?' Elizabeth Weir queried.

'They don't naturally possess any psionic abilities' McKay replied. 'We know from records we've retrieved concerning the Alteran/Aquatoid war that this disadvantage was one of the reasons they lost so my guess would be that the Aquatoids that fled to Pegasus were working on a way to replicate through technology the abilities which the Alterans had begun to evolve naturally.'

'We know they genetically engineered the Wraith to have psionics' Beckett noted. 'Two parallel lines of research perhaps?' he theorised.

'We didn't come under psionic attack on Latira' Sheppard pointed out.

'And I have not felt their presence as I sometimes do those of the Wraith prisoners' Teyla added.

'For most of them their abilities might not amount to much more than a certain degree of resistance to psionics' McKay explained. 'The Aquatoid we think was the leader might have been stronger on the psi-power scale but one of the troopers fried out his chip with a zat'nik'tel discharge so that's just an educated guess' he said. 'It's possible that he was shot right at the start of the fighting so he never got a chance to do much more than think "That hurts" before his brain implant shorted out and instantly lobotomised him.'

'It would have been more humane to just kill them' Weir observed, she didn't like the idea of turning sapient creatures into vegetables, even if only by accident.

'Perhaps, but I am far more annoyed by all the valuable intelligence we have likely lost' Vaselov said bitterly. 'Can we expect to obtain much information from the prisoners who were not subjected to zat fire?' he asked McKay.

'Some, but not much' McKay told him. 'We also lost the opportunity to interrogate the aliens we think were the ships engineer and navigator because Sheppard there turned them into smears on the submersible's bridge with his drones.'

'Hey don't blame me because drones don't have a stun-setting' Sheppard defended himself. 'You said to avoid blowing up the part that looked like the engines and I needed to stop it getting away somehow.'

Weir wasn't in the mood to hear them start bickering so she gave Sheppard a look that told him so before turning to McKay. 'Have you made any progress examining the craft yet?' she asked.

'Hey we're good but we're going to need more than a couple of days to get to grips with a whole new set of technology Elizabeth' McKay replied. 'We're still bringing back sections of the hull and I will say that judging by how difficult it was to carve the thing up into chunks small enough to fit through the stargate we'll definitely want to replicate the material they build from' he said.

'Yellow plastic?' Sheppard queried.

'It's a ceramic polymer' McKay responded, rolling his eyes. 'Based on preliminary tests of its properties the number of possible applications for the stuff is just staggering' he gushed enthusiastically.

'Military applications?' Vaselov asked.

'Well for one, if our next-generation of armour plate isn't a laminate of this ceramic polymer with our existing trinium/cydonium alloy I'll eat my weight in citrus fruit' McKay replied. 'It's incredibly strong for its weight.'

'Could our budget actually stretch to that much citrus fruit?' Sheppard asked deadpan.

'We'd have to cut back on the order for F-302 spares I'd think' Beckett played along.

'Oh, har de har har' McKay responded sarcastically, crossing his arms. 'You're not exactly skinny yourself Carson' he pointed out in retaliation.

'My BMI is better than yours and also in my own defence I do come from the country which invented the fried Mars Bar' Beckett replied sadly. The Scottish diet was largely responsible for them having the world's second highest obesity rate after the United States.

'And golf' Sheppard added. 'Not that that's at all relevant it's just that I've been trying to improve my drive recently' he said.

'Yes, one of my people thought you were launching the golf-balls off the tower into the sea as some kind of ritual sacrifice' Teyla told him. 'They also said you seemed quite devoted' she added.

'They should see me practice my putting' Sheppard replied, miming his golf grip in front of him and putting an imaginary ball.

'How goes the research into the enemy's sonic weaponry?' Vaselov asked McKay.

'We've hit a minor stumbling block there' McKay replied with a shrug.

'Which is?' Weir queried.

'The power source for their technology' McKay answered. 'It's... weird' he said.

'Weird?' Sheppard repeated.

McKay sighed. 'The Aquatoids don't seem to use naquadah, or elerium, or nuclear fusion or anything remotely conventional to power their devices' he said. 'All their technology seems to be based on a very strange alloy which radiates energy.'

'You mean like a radioisotope thermoelectric generator?' Vaselov asked. 'The Soviet Union developed several types for the space program and other projects' he explained to Weir.

'No, it's not fission' McKay replied. 'To be honest I haven't got a clue as yet why it generates power it just does' he admitted. 'We determined that gold of all things makes up the majority of the substance, along with some kind of organic matter, but beyond that we're scratching our heads and hoping that the Tollan or maybe the Asgard can figure it out' he continued. 'In terms of power-output it's roughly an order of magnitude above a fission reactor the same size which isn't too shabby at all.'

'What does Travoc think?' Weir asked.

'He thinks the Tollan might need to modify their laws of physics again in order to fit Zrbrite into them' McKay replied. 'Oh yeah, forgot to tell you. We're calling it Zrbrite now' he told the others. 'Zelenka called heads when we flipped for who got to name it which is why it's not McKaybrium.'

'So their engines run on this stuff too I guess?' Sheppard reasoned.

'Right' McKay confirmed. 'We've got a better idea on how they work than we do on Zrbrite at least' he said. 'They're not completely different in principle to a Hebridan Ion Engine, just adapted to effectively propel a craft underwater too' he continued. 'The sub that Major Sheppard knocked out had eight of these Ion Beam Accelerators and it's a good job we didn't try and catch one underwater because it would leave a puddle-jumper or any Earth built submarine standing.'

'You're sure these things can fly too?' Sheppard checked.

'Yes, I'd estimate the vessel we recovered could reach hypersonic speeds in the atmosphere' McKay told him. 'It probably wouldn't handle as well as an aircraft which was better optimised to atmospheric flight but you'd need an F-302 to chase it down.'

'Armament?' Vaselov wanted to know.

'It carried what appears to be a very, very large version of one of the sonic weapons their infantry use' McKay replied. 'I suspect it would do horrible, horrible things to anything you fired it at from a fair range but we'll need to get to grips with the technology before we could think to test it.'

'Sounds like you're going to be busy for a while' Weir observed.

'Too busy' McKay replied. 'The science personnel were already at full stretch dealing with the Ancient technology we were studying' he said, 'we just don't have the resources to throw at the Aquatoid research as well, not if you want results any time soon.'

'You're requesting more staff?' Vaselov responded.

'We've got plenty of room to house them and I doubt you'll have too much trouble finding volunteers back on Earth' McKay replied.

'That won't be necessary Rodney' Weir told him. 'The Tollan have decided they are going to send a ship here to Pegasus bringing a gate-capacitor with them now despite the Wraith and Aquatoid threat' she announced. 'We'll be able to send things back to Earth for study there very shortly' she told them. 'And go home for vacations too' she added, smiling.

'You kept that news quiet Elizabeth' Beckett responded, smiling himself.

'I wanted it to be a surprise' Weir explained. 'The Tollan Cruiser Sher-Mal arrives in six days.'

'They sticking around long?' Sheppard wondered.

'I'm hoping at least until the Daedalus is finished and on its way' Weir replied. 'The last update said it was nearing completion and would be assigned to us.'

'Thought they'd want to keep the first 304 Class ship close to home' Sheppard remarked.

'They have Prometheus, Atlas and Kuznetsov already to keep the goa'uld away from Earth with Odyssey already under construction in the second ship yard on Mars' Vaselov pointed out. 'Once Daedalus is completed and launched then they plan to immediately start work on the Iliad also.'

'Then after Odyssey is launched freeing up her bay they're going to start on Aeniad according to the plan' Weir interjected. 'We'll soon have quite the navy... assuming we don't bankrupt the planet first' she added.

'It's the research and development costs that kill you, not the production' McKay pointed out. 'If we keep producing 304 Class ships one after another the price per unit drops fast' he said. 'Most of what we had to plough into Daedalus isn't actually lost and we'll be able to refine manufacturing techniques and make incremental improvements to each ship in turn.'

'Thinking in the shorter term we still have a problem on Latira' Weir reminded everyone. 'What are we going to do about the Aquatoids there?' she asked.

'I've got a suggestion' McKay said, raising his hand. 'We could give the Aquatoids some of their polymer ceramic back.'

'You've lost me, and even earlier than normal I'm afraid to say' Weir responded.

McKay smiled evilly. 'The stuff is just ideal for resisting pressure which is probably why they make their submersibles from it' he said. 'I could build you one hell of a depth charge with a couple of hundred kilos of it and a Mark VIII warhead' he suggested. 'Assuming we can find their base on Latira and it's not on a geological fault line...'

'Boom' Sheppard finished for him, this time mining a large explosion with his hands.

Weir looked at them askance. 'Nuclear weapons are not my preferred solution to every problem we ever encounter in the Pegasus Galaxy' she stated.

'But we've done so well with them so far' McKay protested as Teyla wondered not for the first time if the Ancestors had really known what they were doing when they created these people.

Arkhan's World – Milky Way Galaxy – November 1787

Wishing his overloaded rucksack wasn't so heavy because the strap was already digging into his shoulders Janus turned back towards the gateship for likely the last time and sighed. He had known all along he couldn't continue to go tearing around time and the stargate network forever because no matter how careful he was not to mess with the timeline one day he was going to really screw up and might not be able to fix it. The ability of the small craft to become totally invisible and undetectable to almost all sensor technologies had enabled him to surreptitiously observe the development of societies and cultures throughout the galaxy, jumping back and forth in time to monitor their progress, but the incident with the Furlings was a clear indication it was now time to call it a day.

An isolationist race that enjoyed their privacy even more than the Nox, the Furlings had nearly shot Janus down when he had underestimated the effectiveness of their scanners and it was only decloaking and transmitting a panicked cry of "I'm an Ancient. Please don't kill me" on the subspace frequencies they used which had saved him. After the Lantean scientist delivered a sheepish apology the Furling authorities had eventually let Janus and his gateship go, albeit with a stern rebuke, and he had decided then give up his adventures and rejoin his people.

Everyone Janus had known growing up was now either long dead or had ascended. As he walked away from the gateship towards the stargate itself, intending to travel to Kheb seeking help in his own much prevaricated upon ascension, he knew from already travelling to the future of this world that the ship would be recovered in the future by humans and he wondered what they'd be like. It was clear by their possession of the gene required to operate the ship that one of them at least was likely to be the descendant of someone he had known personally on Atlantis and he idly wondered how many of the Lanteans who decided to stay on Earth had ended up getting intimate with the locals. 'Maybe Moros had a fetish for girls wearing smelly animal skins?' he theorised, chuckling to himself.

Janus decided that before leaving forever it might be nice to say hello and a final goodbye to his friend the stonemason. He had employed the man to carve the future history of this world into the columns of what was currently the largest settlement on the planet, a town near the old goa'uld naquadah mine, and had become quite fond of him and his family during their association. Janus knew that the town itself would be abandoned in a few decades, the population moving further from what had been the site of their enslavement, but the legacy cut into the marble would remain long afterwards as a testimony to what a bored Lantean genius looking for something to occupy his time with would end up doing as a hobby.

Reaching the town Janus was more than a little surprised to find that his friend was back at work carving additional text into one of the columns and it wasn't anything he had ever written out for him to reproduce. The Lantean was about to ask what was going on when he was confronted by a young woman wearing a uniform with insignia on it he had seen before and carrying a weapon of some kind.

'We have been waiting for you to get here' the woman told Janus. 'Brigadier-General O'Neill is probably in the tavern, we should fetch him and be on our way' she continued, looking the Lantean up and down. 'If that is not your only luggage I can collect the rest of it for you' she offered.

'You're one of Elizabeth Weir's people' Janus managed to say, getting over his shock at the situation.

'Yes we are but how do you know Doctor Weir?' a man wearing the same uniform queried, joining them. 'I'm sorry we should probably introduce ourselves properly first' he said. 'I'm Doctor Daniel Jackson, this is Sergeant Lyudmila Andianov and we've come from the future to find you using the ship you left behind' he said. 'Ours is parked near the stargate, I mean the astria porta.'

'You looked younger in your picture' Andianov commented to the Lantean.

'My picture?' Janus repeated, confused.

'Yes we've got a picture of you downloaded from the Atlantis database' Daniel explained. 'So how long has it been since you evacuated to Earth, I mean Terra?' he asked curiously, noting the Lanteans greying hair. 'That is in your own subjective years of course, not the ten thousand years it's been since you abandoned Pegasus.'

Janus blinked as his mind attempted to put all of this together into something that made more sense. 'I don't suppose you could explain what's going on could you?' he requested hopefully, not normally caught quite so unawares by events. Even the unexpected incident with the Furlings had been more terrifying than mystifying.

'Oh right' Daniel responded. 'Like I said before, we found your time-machine and we've travelled back to when we knew you'd left it here so we could go through with the mission we found written on the column... in the future.'

'What mission' Janus asked, still largely none the wiser for that explanation.

'The one we paid the guy over there to carve into the column' Daniel replied then shrugged. 'I think we've both got half the story and we're not really going to understand everything until we compare notes to be honest' he said. 'For a start I think you can tell us where we can find a charged potentia' he added, using the Ancient term for a ZPM.

Janus frowned. 'I thought you called them Zero Point Modules?' he replied.

'How do you know that?' Daniel responded, nonplussed.

Andianov looked from one to the other. 'If this conversation is going to take as long as I think it will I am going to join Brigadier-General O'Neill and Colonel Carter in the tavern' she said, turning on her heels and marching off.

'Radio Teal'c and tell him he doesn't have to watch the gate any more' Daniel called after her. 'We didn't know for sure where you were going to go after leaving the Puddle Jumper so we left someone watching the astria porta' he told Janus before breaking out into a broad smile. 'It's really a pleasure to meet you by the way' he told the Lantean. 'Should have mentioned that earlier' he apologised. 'After this is all over we'll drop you off at the planet and time-period of your choice by the way' he promised.

Janus decided to just go with the flow. 'I was going to Kheb if you know where that is?' he replied.

'Been there' Daniel told him, nodding. 'I guess you're looking to ascend then?' he asked rhetorically. 'Say Hi to Oma from me and remember not to interfere with the mortal planes once you do ascend because they'll kick you out on your ass if you do' he warned from experience. 'Come on, I'll introduce you to the others and we'll chat over lunch.'

Janus stood there for a moment while the human led off. 'Wasn't really looking forward to retiring and becoming incorporeal yet anyway' he said eventually, laughing as he began to follow.

Five hours later Janus found himself in the co-pilots seat of the gateship the humans had brought with them and as they lurched into the sky and then performed an excessively jerky correction to their rate of ascent he decided to take the risk of provoking the Terran leader and make a suggestion. 'Are you sure you don't want me to drive?' he asked again.

'I'm getting the hang of it' O'Neill replied curtly, bringing the puddle-jumper to a halt hovering a few hundred feet up.

'You should have seen him try and take off the first time' Daniel commented from the back, earning a scowl from O'Neill who had turned around in his seat to do so.

'I got us through the gate to the SGC and then flew this baby up the old missile shaft, got her all the way to Area 51 and then all the way back again after the refit didn't I?' O'Neill responded, annoyed at the slight to his piloting skills. He didn't go on to mention their trip through time once they returned to this planet in the now upgraded craft, it had been very anticlimactic, one second they were in 2005 and in the blink of an eye it was the eighteenth century.

Andianov and Teal'c looked at each other, along with Daniel Jackson they had both got out in the gateroom rather than "enjoy" the experience of being in the back of the ship while O'Neill hurtled nose-first up the shaft which wasn't really that much wider than the jumper. Lieutenant-Colonel Carter had stayed with O'Neill but had confessed to squeezing her eyes shut during the ascent.

Janus looked around the cockpit, the humans had added some additional instrumentation as well as the larger devices he had seen installed in the back of the craft. 'What does this do?' he asked, pointing to a large and conspicuous new display panel.

'Shield and reactor control' Carter explained. 'We added a naquadah generator so we could improve the jumpers defensive capabilities' she said.

'More firepower too' O'Neill noted as he put the ship into a shallow dive and prepared to cloak her and dial the gate address Janus had suggested.

'Rapid-fire plasma weapons fitted inside the drone bays' Carter told Janus. 'They're compact enough that they don't interfere with launching the drones.'

'There were only two drones remaining when I left this craft' Janus recalled.

'We re-filled the magazines with drones taken from your old defence platform in Antarctica' O'Neill told him. 'They were at least five million years old and they were still the same type as you were using against the Wraith only a few thousand years ago.'

'They worked, why change them' Janus asked rhetorically. 'Until we encountered the Wraith we hadn't fought a major war with anyone since before the primitive mammals we started playing with to produce you started climbing trees' he pointed out.

'Tens of millions of years of peace just isn't good for military R&D budgets I guess' O'Neill reasoned as they neared the gate, the ship now just off the ground and moving slowly so he could neatly thread the needle. 'I've cloaked the ship, you want to punch in the symbols?' he asked Janus who reached over and began keying in the gate address for the planet in this galaxy he considered the most likely to still have a ZPM.

'To which world are we going?' Teal'c asked. He hadn't yet reached the tavern in his walk from the stargate when this had been discussed earlier.

'It's a planet on the outskirts of the territory that belongs to Camulus' Carter told him. 'The Ancients had a research station operating there before they left the Milky Way for Pegasus and Janus thinks the ZPM is likely still in place' she said.

Janus turned to the Jaffa and nodded. 'I know of the facility because I once read about the experiments in high-energy physics that were being conducted there when my civilisation was at its height' he told Teal'c. 'It might not be fully charged but the program was abandoned before they could have completely drained the potentia' he said.

'And if it is not there?' Andianov asked.

'My only other suggestion in this galaxy was Proclarush Taonas but you say you've already recovered that one' Janus replied. 'Or at least you will in the future.'

'There must have been more surely?' Carter questioned him.

'Yes I'm sure there likely are other potentia to be found but you've got to remember that I was born on Atlantis millions of years after my people left this galaxy' Janus reminded her. 'I was taught about Proclarush Taonas at school, it's not like I ever went there or had even visited this galaxy before we ran away from the Wraith.'

'It's not like even the Ascended Ancients are actually omniscient either' Daniel agreed as they flew into the event horizon of the wormhole.

Some years afterwards Camulus would himself discover the Ancient facility but finding it lacked a power source, and completely unable to fathom out the rest of the technology, he buried it. He did however boast to the other System Lords during a meeting at Hasara Base about discovering what he told them was an extremely valuable piece of leftover Ancient equipment while trying to impress Ra who was always interested to hear about such discoveries.

Atlantis – Pegasus Galaxy – March 2005

Elizabeth Weir and the other senior staff of the expedition still hadn't adjusted to the arrival of SG-1 in a puddle jumper ahead of the latest supply shipment from Earth, but the notion that they had not only brought a ZPM with them but were accompanied by the Lantean scientist Janus was more than a little hard to take. On the other hand however, compared to what Janus had just told them the rest of it didn't really seem quite so implausible.

The Tollan Cruiser Shar-Mal had arrived only a few days before and the engineering team they had arrived with had still been in the process of installing the stargate capacitor which would enable Atlantis to open a wormhole to Earth once a week when SG-1's arrival with a ZPM holding a fifty-percent charge meant they could open one at will. Initially Weir had wondered if it was even worth finishing the capacitor but McKay had pointed out that it would be best not to use any of the power from the Zero Point Module in dialling the Milky because it couldn't ever be recharged whereas the naquadah-generators used to charge the Tollan gate-capacitor were easily replaced when depleted.

'Ten thousand years ago' Weir queried, looking at Janus doubtfully as the man smiled at her reaction. 'You met me ten thousand years ago?' she asked.

'From my perspective it was only fifteen years ago but essentially yes' Janus confirmed, looking around the conference room. The city was essentially much like it had been when he lived there millennia before although the Terrans and their friends had made a few notable alterations including the trio of large and unsightly Heavy Ion Cannon positioned at the end of three of the piers and the various other weapon emplacements they had seen fit to despoil the cities clean lines with.

'By which you mean you met another, alternate Doctor Weir?' Colonel Vaselov queried, wondering how Brigadier O'Neill sat next to him could take this kind of thing so easily in his stride. Lieutenant-Colonel Carter was present also but Daniel Jackson and the other two members of the team were touring the city since they already knew the situation and in Jackson's case he was almost beside himself with excitement at being on Atlantis.

'Right' Janus confirmed, reaching for a glass of water and taking a sip. 'Based on what she told me, when you originally sent a team to Atlantis from Terra your presence activated all the automatic systems thus very rapidly depleting what power was left in the three potentia and causing the shield to fail catastrophically while the city was still submerged' he said.

'And we all drowned' Major Sheppard asked, none too pleased at that idea.

'Most of you at least' Janus replied, 'some of you managed to escape in the gateships you discovered in the hanger above us' he said, pointing up with his free hand. 'One of them held my prototype time-machine' he continued his story, 'and the pilot must have inadvertently activated the device and ended up back during the Wraith siege of Atlantis, just prior to our evacuation to your homeworld' he told them, taking another sip of water. 'The gateship was shot down almost as soon as it arrived but I managed to save one of the people aboard, specifically Elizabeth Weir which is of course why I know this chain of events' he explained.

McKay shook his head. 'When we got here there were still at least a few days worth of power left in the ZPM' he said. 'Plus there's a safety feature that brings the city to the surface when the shield is about to fail' he added.

'That safety only exists only because I programmed the city's computer to do that after hearing Elizabeth's story' Janus told him.

'And the additional power?' Samantha Carter asked, curiously.

Janus sighed. 'That was the reason Elizabeth needed to stay behind when the rest of us left' he responded sadly. 'I determined that if only one of the potentia was connected to the power grid when we left, the second being plugged in to the cities power system before the first was entirely depleted just over three thousand years later and then the third in turn another three thousand years after that then there would be a greater reserve left by the time you arrived.'

'So running the ZPM's in sequence is more efficient than doing so in parallel?' McKay asked.

'Yes but only marginally' Janus told him, 'just enough so that after ten thousand years there would be days of power left as opposed to minutes' he said.

'So the other me had to stay behind to plug in the next ZPM every few thousand years' Weir interjected, 'using one of the stasis chambers to accomplish that.'

'Correct' Janus told her. 'Although you do still age gradually in the chambers it should have extended your life long enough to enable you to accomplish the task' he said. 'A very praiseworthy act of self-sacrifice for the people you were responsible for' he continued. 'I was very impressed' he told Weir honestly. Janus had come to like Elizabeth quite a lot during their brief association ten millennia before. She was quite unlike most of his own people who basically at best merely tolerated his distinctly un-Lantean ways, Doctor Weir actually seemed to like his rebellious streak and had become for an all-too-brief time almost his muse as well as a friend.

'It wasn't actually me though' Weir replied. 'Not me me at least' she said, hoping that made sense.

'Perhaps not, but you are fundamentally the same person so you would have done the same' Janus told her before his attention shifted to Teyla who had been studying him intently ever since he arrived and the Athosian had learned his identity. 'Am I really that interesting?' he asked wryly causing her to blush with embarrassment.

'I am sorry if I have been bothering you it is simply that you are the first of the Ancestors I have met' Teyla told him sheepishly. 'At least the first who was not ascended' she corrected herself remembering Chaya. 'My people and many of the others in this galaxy have long revered you.'

'Must be like meeting Elvis in the flesh after thinking he'd been dead since 77' O'Neill observed to Colonel Vaselov.

Janus looked embarrassed now himself, the Pegasus humans of his own era hadn't regarded the Lanteans that way. Teyla sounded almost worshipful and the last living Lantean knew his people weren't deserving of that, certainly not after their complete failure to protect both themselves and their creations from the Wraith anyway. 'I'm surprised you think of us in positive terms after we lost the war and abandoned you' he told Teyla.

'It was no shame of yours to lose merely because you were not as murderous or skilled at slaughter as your enemy' Teyla replied. 'Which is not to say that being highly skilled at slaughter means that you are automatically bad people' she added quickly when she remembered that she was in a room full of Terrans who might have taken exception to such a sweeping generalisation given their own genetic proclivities in that direction.

McKay coughed. 'There's one glaring issue with your story' he said. 'We checked out all the stasis chambers in the city ages ago looking fore leftover Ancients and there wasn't anybody in any of them' he pointed out.

'Which is actually why we're here' Brigadier O'Neill spoke up. 'We're going to use the time-machine to go back and rescue Doctor Weir just before she went into the stasis the first time' he explained. 'Then we'll jump forward three thousand years, plug in the next ZPM and then do it again before making the final jump home' he said.

'There are also a few dangerous experiments and possible hazards in the city which I never had the time or opportunity to render safe before the Lantean High Council ordered the evacuation' Janus told them. 'Since I'm getting another chance at it I might as well do the job right' he said.

'Just for the record we never found a jumper with a time-machine in it either' Sheppard noted.

'The High Council made me dismantle my prototype' Janus explained regretfully. 'I wanted to use the thing to go back and defeat the Wraith, or at least bring Doctor Weir home, but they regarded time-travel as being simply too dangerous' he said. 'To be fair a few of previous experiments did end badly' he admitted. If it hadn't been for the war and the desperate need to have their brightest and best working on ways to beat the Wraith Janus knew he would have never been able to get away with half the things the Council knew he'd done. For that matter with less on their plate they would have had a greater ability to monitor his activities and discover all his secret projects they didn't know anything about at all.

'They did have a point regarding time-travel' Carter observed, McKay nodded his agreement, causality was not something you should play with lightly. 'If it wasn't for the fact that it seems like our current timeline is the result of our going back and making these changes I would have advised against this course of action' she said. 'The butterfly effect means that time-travel is inherently risky and unpredictable' she noted.

'Exactly how do we know for certain you went back and rescued the other Doctor Weir?' Colonel Vaselov asked. 'Without proof is it something we should do?' he added sagely.

O'Neill chuckled as an idea occurred to him. 'Elizabeth could you do me a favour and look at the underside of the table just where you're sitting' he requested.

Weir looked at him for a moment in puzzlement then pushing back her chair she got down under the table and had a look for a moment before emerging again, now smiling herself. 'Couldn't you have come up with something better than "Jack O'Neill was here" scratched into the table' she asked.

'Well not now I can't because if I scratch anything else there with my penknife when we go back I'll have changed history' O'Neill replied. 'Right Carter?' he checked with the commanding officer of SG-1.

'Right Sir' Carter confirmed.

John Sheppard frowned. 'But if you bring back the other Elizabeth won't that mean we'll have two of them?' he asked.

Weir raised her eyebrows. 'That could be awkward' she observed. For that matter which of them was the "real" one, or were they both equally real in this timeline? What would the other Elizabeth Weir actually do anyway?

'Confusing too, unless one of you goes back to dyeing her hair blond' O'Neill suggested. 'If it's alright by you we'll round up Daniel and be on our way' he said.

Feeling uncomfortable about making the request but considering it her duty as a leader of her people Teyla decided to broach something with Janus before he left. 'Rumours of your arrival have likely already spread to all the Athosians living here on Atlantis' she told him. 'Could you spare some time to meet with them?' she requested. 'It would mean a great deal to us' she said as the walls of the conference room opened so Janus and SG-1 could leave.

'I wouldn't know what to say' Janus replied, inwardly appalled by the idea. He had been well known among the Lanteans of his generation and was used to a certain level of fame and the respect of his peers, albeit sometimes grudging, but this was more like being an object of veneration. Being confronted by that Tollan engineer earlier who had a long list of questions about various city systems and was now going through the database trying to figure out what the answers meant had been a much more enjoyable experience by comparison despite the mans less than friendly or collegiate manner.

'Well think fast because it looks like they've already gathered' Sheppard told him, realising that the open space in front of the stargate now held a growing throng of Athosians all desperate to catch a glimpse or perhaps hear a few words from the Ancestor who had returned to them. 'There's a multitude out there.'

'I hope you can turn water into wine, or feed everyone in the city with five loaves and two fishes because if not they're going to be very disappointed' McKay observed sardonically.

'They think I'm here to deliver them from the Wraith or something' Janus complained. 'I'm just a scientist, I'm not a very good public speaker either' he admitted nervously. 'The Lantean High Council didn't even consider me a particularly good citizen ' he continued honestly. 'I'm a terrible representative of my people' he told Teyla earnestly. 'In peacetime I'd have probably been ostracised and banished from the city as a destabilising influence and a possible threat to the public good' he added.

'Just smile a lot, say a few well-meaning platitudes and denigrate the Wraith and they'll love you I'm sure' Elizabeth Weir advised, entertained by his very human-like reaction to an entirely unfamiliar situation he was deeply uncomfortable with.

Sheppard got up off his chair. 'Don't worry' he told Janus. 'I'll handle this' he promised, walking over to the balcony where he could address the Athosians. 'He's not the Messiah. He's a very naughty boy' he said loudly.

'Lieutenant Colonel' O'Neill addressed Carter, 'we're getting outta here right now before this turns into a discussion about what have the Ancients ever done for us' he told her seriously.

'They built the stargate network' McKay said before anyone else could.

Note from the Author:

The aliens in X-COM: Terror from the Deep had implants in their brains which gave them psionic like abilities. Having the things burned out by zat'nik'tel discharges (and consequently frying the brains of the Aquatoid concerned) seemed like like a nice irony after XSGCOM made such an effort to capture so many alive for interrogation. Aqua Plastics is the material of choice for the Aquatoids and their associated races. Interestingly in SG-1 a Ceramic Polymer was developed for body armour that would resist staff-weapon fire. Zrbrite is the power-source for alien technology in TFTD and it is very weird stuff! Aquatoid submersibles use Ion Beam Accelerators as their engines. Having these akin to Hebridan Ion Drives is just me trying to keep the merged canons together really by having them share another technology.In SG-1 episode 7:07 Enemy Mine it appears that one of the major bottlenecks for production of Earth warships is a shortage of naquadah. Since XSGCOM Earth has no such shortage, is also stretching out its Trinium supply with Cydonium and has the Martian shipyards, having considerably more 304 Class ships being produced doesn't seem too unreasonable (hope you like the names)

When the Lanteans abandoned Atlantis for Earth some stayed there to try and help the humans of 10,000BC develop civilisation, others opted to seek ascension and a few more headed back out through the stargate to go elsewhere. We don't really know what Janus (and his Time Jumper) got up to in the Milky Way, or when for the most part, but I can easily see him spending the next few years after leaving Earth basically bumming around while he prevaricated about taking the next step and ascending. Kheb was a world known to the Jaffa through legend where the Ascended Ancient Oma Desala who aid others to ascend. SG-1 visited it in episode 3:20 Maternal Instinct. We learn in episode 8:04 Zero Hour that at some point Camulus discovered a ZPM powered Ancient Device. He couldn't figure out how to make it work so he sabotaged the thing instead, leaving it as a trap for other goa'uld (the ZPM was rigged to explode, the result of that detonation being at least planet-shattering). Here it's SG-1 that recover the ZPM first... and why not I say!

We learn in SGA episode 1:15 Before I Sleep that when the Atlantis Expedition first came to Pegasus it went very badly and the only reason why the timeline ended up as canon was because of time-travel, Elizabeth Weir's loyalty to her people and Janus not being the type to do as he was told. Stranded ten thousand years in the past Elizabeth Weir went into a Stasis Pod, the system programmed to wake her every three millennia in order to plug in another ZPM. In the series the Atlantis team found a year aged Weir who told them the story before dying of old age. Here SG-1 and Janus use his time machine to go back and solve the problem differently. Although with a 50% charged ZPM Atlantis can now dial Earth at will it does make more sense to use the Tollan Gate-Capacitor to power inter-galactic wormholes instead because Zero Point Modules (AKA "Potentia") are irreplaceable. Although each capacitor requires a week to charge by staggering the connections they can now communicate every few days rotating personnel and sending equipment back and forth. The Athosians and most other groups of Pegasus humans appear to worship, or at least revere the Lantean Ancients. Teyla and her people would likely regard the return of a living Ancient to their old city as some kind of sign or portent but the thought of Janus being critically embarrassed about the whole thing just struck me as funny (as did the Monty Python's Life of Brian references at the end there)
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