Michael held his temper until the door to the townhouse shut, only then whirling on Daniel in a fit of anger. “I swear if you –“
“Will you just calm down and let me explain?” Daniel’s voice rose with frustration. “I’m about to spill classified government secrets – the least you could do is just listen to me for five minutes.”
“Fine,” Michael snapped. “You’ve got five minutes before I march in there and take Liz and Is as far away from here as possible. I will –not- let them get hurt by some goons in lab coats.”
The other man nodded slowly. “You understand that five minutes was a figure of speech. This story is sort of long –“
”Summarize. And your time’s already started.”
It made him feel a little better to see Daniel put so off balance, to watch him try to struggle for what Michael could only assume were the ‘right words’. Fuck that. He didn’t want the right words, just the truth. It figured that the first time he ever made an active decision to tell not just one person, but an entire group of people, their secrets – this type of thing happened.
Maxwell was going to kill him. Royal decree or some bullshit.
“So, okay,” Daniel paused, taking a deep breath of air. “We have this portal…thing… called a Stargate, that lets us travel to different planets. You’re not the first alien that I’ve met. Not even the first one on this planet.”
Michael blinked, something very similar to shock working its way through him. He’d heard what Daniel had said, all babbling aside, but the meaning was taking a moment to dawn on him fully.
And when it did he felt like he’d been hit by a ton of bricks.
“Wait – you have a portal, and it takes you to other planets? Magic?”
“No,” Daniel shook his head. “It’s a type of technology created by a race of people much older and, um, wiser than us, unfortunately. One of my teammates, Sam, can explain it to you in detail if that’s what you want.”
It wasn’t. Michael could have cared less about the details. He believed Daniel. How could he not? The story was too wild to have just been made up on the spot and, given the other man’s reaction upon finding out they were aliens, it all made perfect sense.
Which didn’t necessarily equate to trust.
“And why do you go to these other planets?”
“To learn,” Daniel shrugged. “Basically the story goes like this – however many thousands of years ago a race of creatures called the Goa’uld came to Earth. Now, the Goa’uld are parasites. They take over the body of their host completely. That’s why they came to Earth – to get more hosts. They herded humans on their ships and flew them off to all parts of the galaxy. They settled, bred, and created societies much like you see in history books.”
“So… all the aliens you’ve met have been human? Except for these Goa’uld things?” Michael felt his hope of finding his home planet fly out the window. There was sentient life in the universe – and it had all come from Earth. Whoopty-fucking-do.
“Well… no. Not entirely. And some of the races we’ve met we’re sure were human at some point – they just evolved into something else.”
Okay, that was a little more promising.
“You ever been to Antar?”
Daniel sighed and shook his head. “Which doesn’t mean that we won’t one day find it… or that none of our allies have heard of it. But before I can even put the word out to start looking, I would have to tell my superiors about you guys.”
There was the crux of it. Michael had been sure it was there somewhere. He sighed and shoved his hands in his pockets. “Your story is crazy. You know that right? The government going off into space to explore different planets.”
The corner of Daniel’s smile tilted upward. “I know what you mean. If I didn’t go through the ‘gate on a regular basis, I’m not sure I’d believe me myself. But, if you think about it, this is no crazier than the idea of a group of high school kids being reincarnated alien rulers.”
Michael smirked, nodding. “Or vampires and witches, right?”
Daniel was looking at him expectantly and it took Michael several long moments to figure out why.
He was expecting some kind of decision.
“Okay, I believe you aren’t going to try to dissect us,” he shrugged.
“And I can tell my superiors?”
That brought Michael up short. He got the reason Daniel had brought him out here for their little talk. Spilling state secrets to one person was different than doing it in a room full of people.
But all that meant, really, was that now he was being put on the spot to make a decision for all of them. As a group.
“If you tell them… and anyone tries anything –“
“They won’t,” Daniel protested. “If anything, we can help protect you and make sure no one finds out.”
Michael frowned. The reassurance was nice, but not what he wanted in the least. “Like I was saying – if anyone tries anything. If Liz or Is or –any- of us, our friends or family, get hurt – I will personally make you very, very sorry.” He paused for effect. “And then I’ll kill you.”
Oddly enough, the threat didn’t really seem to faze the other man too much. In fact, he took it in stride, as if he dealt with death threats everyday.
Then again, maybe he did.
Daniel glanced down at his watch. They’ll be here in a couple hours. I want to call the General first… so that he can keep Jack from killing me for spilling state secrets.”
A glimmer of movement in the window caught Michael’s attention and he turned in time to see both Liz and Willow duck their heads back behind the curtain. Great. Just great. He was going to have to keep this from both Liz and Isabel until Daniel was done talking to that General. Just perfect. Even if he got Liz to speak to him again, it was doubtful the same could be said of Isabel.
He’d best just stay out here until Daniel finished speaking to the General. Just to make sure of what was being said, of course.
Yeah, right. He was hiding from the two most important women in his life and he wasn’t afraid to admit it.
Speaking of admitting things to important women. “Don’t suppose your girl already knew about your secret, did she?”
Daniel looked up from the cell phone he’d been fiddling with. “No, why?”
Michael smirked. At least he wouldn’t be the only one in the doghouse.
“Could you hear anything?”
Liz shook her head. “But Michael didn’t look so wired anymore.”
Which was definitely a good thing. She’d been pretty surprised to look outside and see the two of them having what appeared to be a civil conversation. Too bad super hearing wasn’t one of the powers she’d picked up along the way.
“Well, that’s good, right?”
Liz nodded, biting her lower lip as she looked around the living room. Giles was putting a large bandage on Buffy’s wound. It looked better than it had before Isabel had tried to heal her, Liz had to admit it.
But that wasn’t saying much. Isabel wasn’t good at healing.
Only Max was.
“We need him,” she whispered more to herself than Isabel, finding herself almost startled when the other woman spoke.
“Max,” Liz sighed, rubbing a hand over her tired eyes. Was this day ever going to end? “We need a healer… and he’s it.”
“He hasn’t been answering his phone,” Isabel muttered.
“We could leave him a message, explain what’s going on,” Liz hurried to get the words out of her mouth. “Look, you know I have as much reason as anyone to want to keep him away. Me, him, and Michael being in the same room together hurts all three of us. But… we need him, Is. Before someone else gets hurt. Someone that can’t go to the emergency room.”
Like her, or Isabel, or Michael.
“Fine, I’ll call him,” Isabel sighed explosively. “He still might not come, though.”
Liz smiled sadly, shaking her head. If there was one thing she was sure of in life, it was Max Evans’ dependability when it came to his family. If Isabel said she needed him, he’d come. Even for her or Michael he’d come, though it might tear his heart apart. Her lips pressed together in a biter line.