Author's Notes: Once again, heavy reliance on the transcript for Avalon, part 1, at Gatenoise. Oh, and one naughty word. Also, I've decided that Marks holds the rank of captain rather than lieutenant.
Near Glastonbury Tor
“You're kidding,” Willow said.
She looked at the pale gray robes in Nelly's arms. Nelly was the one of the younger members of the Devon coven. Unfortunately, she was not the type to joke, being far tweedier than Giles ever was.
“Willow, this is the traditional clothing of the Guardian of the Treasure,” Nelly replied.
The choice of the American witch as Guardian was a decidedly dubious one to Nelly's mind. Willow, being mostly self-taught, had little appreciation of tradition. That Willow had been named as the Guardian spoke volumes about her raw power but Nelly knew where that power had taken the redhead in the past. She hoped that the leaders of the Coven knew what they were doing.
“Of course it is,” Willow echoed. She sighed and started to strip down. “Let's hear it for tradition.”
- - -Colorado Springs
Buffy and Jay piled the last of the dishes into the dishwasher. The dinner for two had been a success. Jay was right, the steak was just perfect. The chocolate cake with almond frosting that she had made earlier in the day was almost gone. Buffy's Slayer metabolism guaranteed that she wouldn't gain an ounce but she couldn't figure out why Jay was such a beanpole.
“How about a movie,” she asked as they left the kitchen.
“Sounds good,” Jay replied and began to walk towards the living room.
“You know, Jay,” Buffy gave him the 'look,' hoping that she hadn't misread his signals. “I've got a DVD player in my room.”
“Sounds even better.” He shoots, he scores.
The pair headed upstairs.
- - -Earth Orbit over England
“So what do you think the range of these things is?” Mitchell asked Daniel as he passed him a vest from a storage locker in the Prometheus'
“Well, Dr. Lee seems to think we need to stay within 100 feet or so of each other…more than half an hour outside that boundary we'll begin to feel the effects.”
“You know if we do find something I'm thinking…maybe just Teal'c and I should check it out.”
“If we find a secret ancient base I'm going.”
“It means we have to take her
with us,” Mitchell commented.
“Look,” the sole member of SG-1 said. “I want you there. You know that. I'm just thinking we could stay in radio contact.”
A voice came of the ship's intercom system. “Lt. Colonel Mitchell please report to auxiliary control room two.”
- - -
Mitchell and Daniel entered the control room to find that Teal'c and Vala were already in residence.
“Ah, now this brings back memories,” Vala said with a leer.
“How's that?” Daniel responded.
“Isn't this where I beat you up?”
“No?” Vala drawled. “I'm pretty sure that right there is where I crushed your...”
“Alright, excuse me kids.” Mitchell walked between the pair on his way to the computer where the captain was working. “Marks, what have you got?”
“Well thanks to the Asgard sensors,” he gestured to the other computer, “we were able to map around the energy distortion that would have normally fooled deep ground sonar. I was able to define a large main cavern, a network of tunnels, and some smaller caves.”
“Well done,” Mitchell complimented.
Vala leaned in towards Marks. “Can you see what's in there….say large piles of precious metals?”
Daniel pulled her away from Marks. His hand lingered on her shoulder for a moment before he realized where it was and quickly yanked it away.
Marks shook his head. “Like I said, we could only map the exterior of the structure.”
“Can you get us in there,” Mitchell asked.
“Well it's almost a half mile underground and there's no visible access on the surface...” Marks paused in thought.
“Asgard beams,” Daniel suggested.
“Tried that. Doesn't seem to penetrate whatever sort of energy field is disguising the caves.”
“Ring,” Vala said. When the others looked at her she elaborated. “The Ancients were the gate builders right? And they invented the rings too. Look, they had to get in there some how and I know this ship has rings, it's how I…”
“Yeah, yeah, yeah, good times.” It killed him to admit it but Daniel added, “she's right though.”
“If there are rings down there, we should be able to lock on. But your radios won't work,” Marks warned.
“Looks like we're all going,” Mitchell said as he patted Daniel's shoulder. He then gestured to Vala, “ladies first.”
Not one to turn down such an obvious opening, Vala turned to Daniel. “Well then, after you.”
Refusing to acknowledge the dig, Daniel left the room followed by Vala.
As Mitchell headed out the door with Teal'c, he turned to the Jaffa and said, “Come on. This is fun. Right?”
- - -Washington, DC
Most of his staff had gone home hours ago but O'Neill was still at his desk when he heard a knock at the door. He looked up to see Lt. Col. Davis standing in the doorway.
“Paul, any word from Summers?” Jack asked as he motioned his subordinate to enter and take a seat.
“Yes, sir. She finally returned my call.” Davis eased himself into the chair opposite the general's desk.
“Will she try to talk to her contacts?”
“No, sir?” Jack raised an eyebrow. “Care to explain?”
“Since I couldn't tell her why we needed access to the site, she wasn't going to cancel her plans for tonight. She did say she would try to make inquiries on our behalf. On Monday.”
“Monday? That's the best you could get from her?” He shook his head. “I think you are losing your touch, Paul. Call her back and try again.”
“She told me that she was turning off her phone before she hung up.”
“What do you mean she hung up?” O'Neill leaned back in his chair and ran his hand over his hair.
“She said she had a hot date.”
Jack wondered if it would be beneath the dignity of a two-star general to bang his head on his desk. Deciding that it would be, especially if done in front of a witness, he picked up the telephone and placed a call to General Landry.
- - -Beneath Glastonbury Tor
The room had been undisturbed for centuries. The last intrusion had occurred in the mid-seventeenth century. The Guardian sent by the Coven to stop the Royalist treasure hunters in 1647 had ensured that there were no survivors. The Coven, fearing for its own long-term survival in Cromwell's Commonwealth, had expended much of their resources in strengthening Myrddin's wards. That none had gained entry since then was a testament to their sacrifice. The room remained silent, waiting.
A flash of light accompanied the sight of series of rings. The rings disappeared, leaving behind four individuals.
“Wicked,” Mitchell looked around the room. “…and empty.”
Vala sighed. “I haven't been this disappointed since Daniel and I had sex.”
Teal'c stopped and looked at Jackson. Daniel rolled his eyes.
The quartet walked towards a pedestal. As they neared it, a light illuminated it and a sword embedded in a stone appeared.
“The sword in the stone,” Mitchell murmured.
“What's that suppose to mean,” Vala asked in annoyance.
“Well…King Arthur once pulled a sword from the stone as proof of his righteousness and royalty.”
Feeling the need to expand upon Daniel's explanation, Mitchell added “Excalibur.”
Daniel disagreed. “Actually, that's a common misconception. See 'Excalibur' was forged by the Lady of the Lake at Avalon but it wasn't given to King Arthur until after the sword he pulled from the stone was broken in battle.”
Laughing, Mitchell stepped forward and after rubbing his hands together, gripped the sword and tried to pull it out of the stone.
“Give a try, Muscles,” Vala whispered to Teal'c. “I'll give you half.”
After struggling for a minute or two, Mitchell gave up. “It's in there pretty good.”
Daniel moved closer and read the inscription on the side of stone. “Welcome, Knights of the Round Table. Men of honor. Followers of the path of righteousness. Only those with wealth of knowledge and truth of spirit shall be given access to the underworld, the storehouse of riches of Ambrosias Coriolanus. Prove ye worthy and all shall be revealed.”
“So, how do we prove 'ye worthy' and get all to be revealed?” Vala asked.
“I have no idea but something tells me truth of spirit might be a problem for you,” Daniel snarked.
She pulled gingerly on the sword. “You
know nothing about me.”
“That's because everything that comes out of your mouth is a lie.”
“Don't make me separate you two.” Mitchell said trying to put an end to their sniping.
In an effort to distract Daniel and Vala, Teal'c added “perhaps there is something in these tunnels.”
- - -Washington, DC
“What do you mean they've left, Hank?” O'Neill barked. “The British are still refusing to let us look for it.”
Paul watched as O'Neill listened to his counterpart at the SGC. From the storm clouds gathering on the general's face, he figured that the shit was probably about to hit the fan. Five minutes later, he was certain it was.