Chaper Three - The Mistress of the Gates
A/N: See chapter 1 for disclaimer, author’s notes, etc.
Colonel Jack O’Neill dove to the floor and slid across the fancy-schmancy marble tiles until he was covered behind the remains of an overturned marble table. He rolled twice, so he was at the other side of the table, and he brought his P-90 to bear. Two carefully-aimed headshots, two Jaffa down, and he was rolling back behind the cover of the table. He watched his 2IC pop up from behind that big ol’ altar and snap off a nice little three-shot grouping that took down two more Jaffa and forced three more to take cover.
As soon as Carter ducked back down, Teal’c rose on the other side of the room and took out two more Jaffa with blasts from his staff weapon. Then he took cover, while more Jaffa targeted him. Danny took the opportunity to snap off a couple shots with his zat, and even hit one of the Jaffa.
Yeah, it all sounded just swell so far. But he knew it was temporary. They were trapped in a room with no other exit. Not even a nice air vent to crawl through like in the movies. There were maybe thirty Jaffa in the corridor, and more on the way. It was only a matter of time before someone tossed in one of those damn sonic grenades and took all of them out. Then they were going to be in big, big trouble.
It should have been a simple mission. P6X-947 was supposed to be a peaceful farming community. Who knew they had that whole Stephen King ‘Children of the Corn’ thing going for them? Less than an hour after SG-1 made contact with the elders and were led to this temple, the snakes were pouring through the Stargate and SG-1 was about to become sacrifices to these morons’ ‘god’. Another damn snakehead, of course. And if the pictograms on the altar were right, Jack and Danny would end up having their hearts hacked out of their still-living bodies. And Sam would get something far worse than that. He had to get his people out of here! Somehow. He just didn’t have a ‘how’ worked out yet.
And that was when the wall behind Carter began to wobble and warp, in a really disturbing way. He bellowed, “Carter! Your six!”
* * * * *
Major Samantha Carter hated being behind the altar. Okay, it was the sturdiest place in the room, and most of the Jaffa didn’t want to shoot in her direction for fear of damaging their god’s altar. But the pictographs on the altar were decidedly graphic. So she knew what was facing her if they caught her alive. Being raped and sodomized nearly to death – or possibly well past death several times in a row, given that there might be a sarcophagus around here – and then getting snaked. Getting snaked? Worse than death. She’d rather make a suicide run with a satchel full of C-4.
“Carter! Your six!” There was no mistaking the colonel’s bellow, or his concern. She spun around, P-90 leveled.
The air in front of the wall was apparently twisting about, as if some sort of heat effect were occurring in a nine-foot annulus. She didn’t know what it was, but she was sure it wasn’t a Goua’uld device. That didn’t mean it couldn’t be an Ancient device that some snakehead had stolen or modified.
She slid several feet to her right, so she wasn’t directly in front of the circle. She maintained a bead on the center of the circle and waited. She was expecting a stream of heavily-armed Jaffa, or some smarmy snakehead in the usual over-the-top costume.
She was absolutely not expecting a twenty-ish girl in a knit top and blue jeans, who was wielding… a little stick?
The girl looked around at the Jaffa and the firefight. Sam knew from the girl’s reaction that she had seen combat before. And Sam really didn’t want to know how a girl who looked about twenty could be that experienced.
The girl pointed the stick at the doorway and murmured, “Protego!” She flicked her little stick, and a jet of red light shot out. Suddenly there was an energy barrier screening them from the squad of Jaffa. Sam watched as the energy barrier stood up to a staff weapon and several zats. That was one tough barrier. Had the girl really created that with a stick?
The girl stepped on through the portal and said in a sophisticated English accent, “That won’t hold forever.”
Jack moved stealthily across the floor, keeping his P-90 trained on the doorway but not ignoring the possible threat over by his 2IC. He slid behind the altar and said, “Nice force field, Sabrina. Got any other tricks up your… umm… stick?”
The girl kept her eyes on the Jaffa in the corridor, who were still firing staff weapons and zats at the energy barrier. She said, “Nice to meet you too,” in that distinct English accent. “Are they really using ray guns?”
Jack snarked, “Says the girl wielding a magic wand.” Sam just knew Jack couldn’t resist a line like that.
Daniel rushed over and asked, “Excuse me, but are you one of the Ancients?”
The girl glared at him. “I’m not ancient! I’m only twenty-one!”
“Way to go, Danny,” muttered Jack.
Daniel held up his hands in a gesture of apology. “No no, I’m not saying you’re old. I’m asking if you’re one of a race that we usually call the Ancients.”
Jack kept an eye on the force field and muttered, “Danny, we’ve seen energy walls before.”
Daniel glared at Jack. “She said ‘protego.’ That’s clearly Latin or a Latinate derivative language, which means she could speak Ancient.”
The girl snapped, “No. I’m English. It’s just a spell. Any competent fifth-year ought to be able to do it.”
Jack looked at Sam and mouthed, ‘a spell?’ Well, she had been fairly sure he would.
Daniel persisted, just as she had known he would. “But the language of the spell is clearly Latin-based, and…”
The girl said, “It’s traditional. Some of the African and Asian witches and wizards use spells in other languages, but it’s always variants based on an extinct predecessor language. At least, that’s what I’ve read.” She glanced at the wavering barrier. “I think we need to get out of here.”
Jack smirked, “Is this where you say…” He dropped into bass tones and affected a bad Austrian accent. “Come with me if you want to live.”
The girl giggled, which told Sam that she got Jack’s reference. Was she from their world, or perhaps an alternate reality Earth? Then the girl frowned, “This really isn’t the time or the place. You’re worse than Ron. Or his brothers.” She flicked her wand at the wall behind her, and the portal re-opened.
Jack glanced at the barrier and said, “Not that we don’t appreciate all your help and everything, but where does that lead?”
She said, “Back to my dimension. I’m really hoping one of you is the person I came for.”
Jack casually said, “You came from another dimension just for little ol’ us?”
The girl said, “It’s a prophecy. I came for ‘the mistress of the gates, not a minor but major.’ I’m assuming it’s you.” She pointed a finger at Sam.
Daniel said, “That would make a lot of sense. Sam is the person who figured out how to use the Stargate system, and she designed her own dialing system. Plus, she’s not a minor, but she is a major.”
The girl raised an eyebrow, and Sam said, “Major Samantha Carter, U.S.A.F.”
The girl nodded slightly. “Hermione Granger.”
Jack said, “Not to be a party pooper, but is there any chance you could take us back to our base and meet with us, before you shanghai our highly-valuable astrophysicist?”
The girl nodded, “I think so.” She stepped forward and put a hand on Sam’s forehead. She said, “Concentrate on exactly where we need to go, and how to get there from here.” Then she flicked her wand oddly and whispered, “Legilimens.”
Daniel frantically whispered, “Jack!”
“Jack, she said ‘legilimens’! That has to mean it’s a mind-reading spell!”
“Oh great, so much for national security.”
After a few seconds, the girl nodded. “Okay, I got that.” She concentrated for long seconds. As a new portal opened, she said to Jack, “Come on. Or do you want to click your heels and say ‘there’s no place like home’ a couple times?”
Jack laughed out loud. “You know, anybody who quotes ‘The Wizard of Oz’ is okay in my book.” He stepped through the new portal, followed by the rest of the team.
Disclaimer: Stargate SG-1 is still not owned by me, no matter how many alternate realities I jump into.
Spoilers: This is set in the middle of the seasons while Sam was still a Major. Assume it’s around the middle of Season 5, after they defeated Apophis and before Daniel Ascended.