A Little Help
Cue road trip fic: canon start.
Road scene: strip club, Oxnard California.
Load Scene: Xander called to stage to replace injured dancer.
“I can do this,” Xander told himself just before he vanished in a flash of light.
The owner sighed when she couldn't find him and sent the suddenly healed dancer up on stage; she'd really been looking forward to seeing him strip.
Finding himself in a tube staring out at a Roswell gray Xander said the first thing that came to mind, “Thank you!”
0oOo0One week later …
SG1 moved forward quietly, they had sensor blocking gear on they were testing for Anise so they had no idea if it was effective or not.
“Are you sure we have these things on right?” Jack whispered to Sam.
“Probably sir,” Sam replied with a shrug, they'd put them on themselves and she'd had to guess about the proper connections in several cases.
Testing … stealing … errr borrowing, it all amounted to the same thing in Jack's opinion.
Danny slid up to the door and began rapidly entering a series of codes Thor had given them to no effect.
Teal'c pushed on the door and it swung open.
Daniel blushed as Teal'c raised an eyebrow in that way he did when he found something amusing.
Loki checked his instruments again and found everything to be proceeding as expected.
A naked human male floated inside an upright tube in the center of the lab, most of his form shrouded in white mist.
Loki hit a button and there was a slight hissing noise as the tube slowly bled off pressure, filling the lab with fog.
SG1 slipped into the lab completely unnoticed as Loki was absorbed in examining the data.
“Freeze!” Jack ordered.
Finding himself covered by four different weapons Loki raised his hands.
“Loki?” Jack asked cautiously as the fog thinned out and he found himself staring at a slender naked man with black hair.
“Yes?” Loki asked politely but with a trace of a smirk on his lips.
SG1 stared, they'd been expecting Loki to look just like he had the last time they'd seen him. Just like any other Asgardian – like a midget Roswell gray with a bigger head.
This Loki, while still gray skinned, looked significantly different; he was just over five feet tall with a full head of raven hair and noticeable muscles, his head still looked a bit large for his body and his eyes were large pools of black that wouldn't have looked out of place on an anime character.
“You did it!” Sam said stunned, “you actually managed to fix the cellular degeneration problem.”
“That still doesn't excuse you for kidnapping someone to use as a guinea pig!” Jack quickly broke in, having been one of Loki's unwilling test subjects himself and still a bit pissed about it.
The tube in the center of the room retracted into the ceiling, leaving a naked Xander to blink sleep from his eyes.
“Kid, you okay?” Jack called out, not moving his gun from Loki.
“Fine but confused,” Xander replied as he looked around the lab.
“He kept you unconscious the entire time, huh?” Jack asked.
Xander's brow wrinkled in confusion. “What I'm confused about is the sudden appearance of a bunch of armed US soldiers when I know for a fact we're nowhere near Earth. Well, that and how the bald guy got a solid gold tattoo on his forehead. Bet that hurt like hell.”
“You weren't kidnapped?” Daniel asked.
“Well he's still an escaped prisoner,” Jack declared firmly.
“Considering he's turned over a new leaf and solved his people's biggest problem by doing so I doubt that'll be the case for long as he has no reason to return to that behavior.”
SG1 relaxed but kept their weapons out.
“We still have to take him into custody and return you home,” Jack said.
“May I ask why you are both naked?” Sam spoke up before Xander could say anything.
“Don't ask, don't tell,” Xander replied with a grin.
Loki sighed. “If only your sense of humor had evolved with the rest of you.”
Xander laughed and Jack had to force himself not to join in.
“Seriously, why aren't you wearing clothes?” Daniel asked.
“My people have evolved beyond the need for clothes,” Loki said.
“That was before the return of external genitalia,” Jack deadpanned, “do you mind putting something on?”
Loki concentrated for a minute and SG1 stared as he suddenly became as genderless as a manikin.
“Ummm,” Sam said, not exactly sure how to phrase what she wanted to ask.
“We Asgardian's can change sex at will, often taking a neutral form for when we wish to concentrate on a problem,” Loki explained.
Everyone switched their gaze to Xander.
“I am the King of No Pants,” Xander replied solemnly, crossing his arms across his chest.
“Why couldn't he be the King of Pants?” Jack muttered as he went through the Star Gate.
“I feel like I just got flushed down the universe's toilet,” Xander said, looking a little pale as he stumbled down the ramp.
“You get used to it,” Jack replied.
“I don't wanna get used to it, I wanna never do it again,” Xander replied, ignoring the number of armed soldiers with weapons half raised scattered around the gate room.
“Is there a reason you've brought a pair of naked people through the gate?” General Hammond asked.
“Loki says he's evolved beyond the need for clothes,” Jack replied, “and his majesty insists he's the King of No Pants.”
General Hammond began rubbing his temples.
“We've never made a big deal about Asgardian's being nude before and Loki was kind enough to shift to a gender neutral form,” Sam pointed out.
“And the King?” Hammond asked.
“Has no clothes,” Xander replied, “I was naked when I was kidnapped.”
“I thought Loki didn't kidnap you?” Jack asked intently.
“He didn't, you did.”
“A bunch of armed people burst into the lab and say we're coming with them, tell me how that's not kidnapping.”
“We couldn't just abandon someone from Earth in one of Loki's labs,” Jack protested.
“And when did anyone ask where I was from? Just because I know a lot about Earth and have chosen a Californian accent doesn't mean I'm from there. Have you even bothered to ask what species I am?” Xander asked, his pupils lengthening until it looked like he had cat's eyes.
Several of the guards nervously raised their weapons.
“Stand down,” Hammond ordered them. “I'm sorry for the mix up, your majesty. Is there any way we can make it up to you?”
“Mistakes happen,” Xander admitted. “I'd like to stay until my friend is picked up by his people if you don't mind, not because I don't trust you'll deliver him unharmed to his people, but because he is my friend.”
“I don't have a problem with it, but we do have security concerns and I doubt our guest quarters are up to your standards,” Hammond warned.
“I don't expect to find a null gravity bedchamber and personal atmosphere controls, a cot and whatever food is common here is fine. I didn't earn my title by being weak after all,” Xander said, deciding to play a role from one of the many legends Loki had told him of.
“Delphi,” Anise breathed as she stared at Xander in shock.
“You know of our guest?” Hammond asked.
“Legends and rumors, very little concrete knowledge,” Anise said, never taking her eyes off Xander.
“I've heard they prefer their own company for the most part, and they try to blend in with local cultures when their paths do cross,” Xander explained.
“They prefer space to planets and have modified their own DNA and continue to do so each year, if a ship disappears completely with no trace ever found it’s said to have been taken by them,” Anise explained.
“Pirates?” Jack asked.
“Hardly,” Xander snorted, “but if someone attacks them they give no quarter or mercy. They never forget an insult or injury, but neither do they forget a favor done them or ignore a call for help. Anyone they help get back to port knows the cost is silence about their presence and to help others if they're ever in a position to do so.”
“And you claim to be the King of No Pants?” Jack asked.
Xander nodded to Anise rather than answer.
“Is there a King of Pants?” she asked intently trying to fit the legends to the man in front of her.
Xander didn't answer but his smile grew.
“The quality of your ships and genetic manipulation abilities are supposed to be unmatched, but you don't seek control over others and even in the legends your people are noted for being quite light hearted. The King of Pants would be the Chief Engineer for your people. While the King of No Pants would be the Chief Geneticist...” her voice trailed off.
“And who better to help Loki solve his people's genetic problem,” Sam finished.
“Of course the morals of his people would mean the person asking for help would have to test it on himself and by doing so would become someone they respect,” Daniel said thoughtfully, “as he'd be following the ways of their people.”
“And if one were to accept a portion of the hypothetical person's DNA to be grafted into the person as their own?” Xander asked, neither confirming nor denying anything.
“A culture like described …” Daniel said thoughtfully, “it'd be like adoption at most, blood brothers at the very least.”
“Blood brother probably means a lot more to me than it does to you,” Xander said thoughtfully, “but like I said they try and blend in, they prefer there be no records of their presence or so I hear.”
“I suppose we can skip guesses of who you are in the records,” Jack said, “since you've gone out of your way to neither confirm nor deny anything.”
Xander just smiled, amused at how thoroughly they'd spun their own story out of an offhand joke of his and a whiff of a legend.
“Have I thanked you lately?” Loki asked as they ate stew in the cafeteria.
“For being able to eat stew?” Xander replied with a grin, since Loki was really enjoying how his new body handled human cooking.
“That too,” Loki agreed, “I mean for trusting me when you had no reason to and helping to save my entire race from extinction.”
“Several times, but I'm sure you'd have found the answer within three to five years on your own.”
“To the degeneration problem yes, but you also provided the solution to the replicator problem.”
“More like my almost identical twin did.”
“Still if it hadn't been for your ideas we wouldn't be where we are today.”
“Locked up?” Xander asked innocently.
Loki chuckled.AN: This is actually another part of 4play from a bit further down the timeline.
AN2: And typing by Godogma who does good work, when not giggling like a lunatic.