Title: Getting Ready to Run
Series Order: 2
Banner Art: None
Word Count: 6,107
Summary: I can only pray, to a God I no longer fully believe in, that those people lived through the Ori bombardment and saved as many people as they possibly could. Because it is hard enough to live with myself knowing how many I saved. There are far more that I left to die.
There are a lot of people who get hot under the collar at how we made the choice for the whole planet. Saying that our ethics were so bent that we were playing God and deciding who lived and who died.
They weren’t the ones who had to live with the sight of people being shoved through the stargate, wondering what they would find on the other side and mourning what they were leaving behind. They weren’t the ones who watched good men and women, when given the chance to leave, decide to stay because they believed that their duty was more important than their lives. Even if they did send their families out to us. Since they weren’t there to decide, we had to.
I can only pray, to a God I no longer fully believe in, that those people lived through the Ori bombardment and saved as many people as they possibly could. Because it is hard enough to live with myself knowing how many I saved. There are far more that I left to die.
General Jack O’Neill
“General O’Neill? The Apollo has entered orbit.” Chief Master Sergeant Walter Harriman called out from his post.
“Sweet! Patch them through.” Jack called. He was packing his desk in an effort to keep his hands busy. The President had given them the go ahead to start pushing people through the gate and Danny had beaten the gun by sending the scientists stationed in the Mountain through. Elizabeth was not going to be happy to see the amount of stuff coming her way.
“General O’Neill, this is Colonel Ellis. I am sorry to report the defeat of my ship and the fleet from Earth has been destroyed.”
Jack closed his eyes at the pain in his Colonel’s voice. “I know Abe. And I am sorry. But we have a new mission and there are things that need to be done quickly. How are your transporter arrays?”
The line was quiet for several heartbeats, and then there was the sound of a deep breath. “Evacuation?” the question was breathed out on a horrified exhale.
There were times when Jack devoutly hated command and this was totally one of them. The Apollo and her crew deserved as much downtime as they could get, but there was no time to give. “Yes, Colonel. Evacuation. How are your arrays?”
One more deep audible breath and Abraham pulled it together. “Our arrays are fully functional and our crystal banks are undamaged. Apollo is standing by for orders, sir!”
Eyes closed against the heavy surge of grief, Jack nodded. “Please get in contact with Dr. Jackson to start the process of moving the evac supplies he has prepped up into storage. You do have McKay’s workaround to the transporters to allow them to store their loads, not rematerialize them, right?”
“We have the change hard-wired into the transporter arrays as an option. We were the test-bed and still have the maximum number of blank crystal arrays hooked into the system.” Ellis said. His voice was carefully blank and Jack was aware enough to know that wasn’t a good thing in a ship captain.
“Excellent. All of the families associated with SGC members have been collected and will be sent through the Gate to Atlantis as soon as possible. With Daniel being in charge of the evacuation, he will be sending everyone he can get his hands on at the first opportunity.” Jack scanned the list that Lam’s department had come up with for any Ellis’s. “Colonel, your wife, and kids, with what looks like a cat and a dog are in the second wave to go out. They are holding in the SGC’s mess.”
Pretending that he didn’t hear the sigh of relief that came across the time, Jack packed another box of office supplies. “We’ll need to get some of our acquisition guys up with you so we can get everything that Daniel and his geeks have designated as stealable, but out of reach of the satellites.”
“Yes, sir.” Ellis’s voice sounded a lot lighter, but still like he had been through the wars. Which to be fair, he had been. “Will we have enough room in the crystal memory for everything?”
“McKay designed this thing to allow us to do this. You have the super-sized test version. It’ll work.” Jack reminded the Colonel gently.
“Yes, sir. Apollo is standing by, ready for orders.” Ellis said smoothly.
“Good man.” Jack softly praised. Turning to tap a few keys on his computer, he forwarded the evacuee’s list to the Apollo. They needed the morale boost.
“Dr. Grissom, this is Dr. Carter. I have a message for you.”
Gil Grissom looked at his phone in concern. The last time he had spoken to the lovely lady on the other end of his phone, he had been examining a gorgeous bug the size of a football. The three weeks he had spent at her site had been some of the most fun of his career. At the end of his three weeks, he had been given his pay, an additional NDA to cover all the other stuff he had gotten into and the knowledge that if it came to it he would be getting a very distressing call.
Over the years since, he had done some consulting work for the SGC, but hadn’t had a reason to go back to Colorado Springs, so he hadn’t talked to Dr. Carter in person. “Dr. Carter! It is a pleasure to hear from you.” He said as he reached for the cricket jar to feed his tarantulas. “How can I help you today? Another bug to identify?”
Sad laughter came floating down the line. “I wish, Dr. Grissom. I dearly wish. I am sorry to ruin your night, but we are informing you that your option to be picked up is here. We’ll call back in three hours to collect you and anyone else you have with you. Please pack for forever, doctor. And leave the insects at home.”
Gil sat in silence for a moment before he shook himself out of his shock, “Please tell me this is a joke?”
“I can’t. Three hours Gil.” And the phone went dead.
“Lt. Caine, this is General Jack O’Neill.”
Horatio could feel a headache come roaring up as he remembered where he had met the other man. “Please tell me that there isn’t another person with glowing eyes and an improbable passenger loose in Miami?”
“No. Worse. Remember the doomsday scenario my geeks and your geek played out?”
It was the feel of the blood slowly draining out of his head and leaving him lightheaded that snapped Horatio out of his silence. Speed and O’Neill’s geeks had been talking about the end of the world. “I remember.”
“Well, we didn’t want it to happen, but a variation of it has. Three hours Horatio. Anyone you want to take. Pack accordingly and leave the suits.” O’Neill said grimly and then hung up the phone.
Horatio was moving before the handset had settled into the cradle. Three hours might not be enough time to get everyone. And to make his decision to stay and protect his city or go and protect all that was dear to him.
“Lt. Mac Taylor.”
“Do they teach you guys to answer the phone with just your names when you go through the police academy?” the voice he had been expecting asked.
“No, Jack. We stop being polite when we become supervisors. I heard from Grissom and Horatio. I’ve already got the people I want to go getting ready. I just don’t know if I should. Do you know what is coming?” Mac asked carefully. He wanted to go, but his sense of duty was urging him to stay. Running away from his post, even if it was to another, was an anathema to him.
“You don’t ask the easy questions, do you, Lieutenant? Right. If Earth is lucky, our guests will come in and just ask for humanity to bow down to them and worship them. If we are mildly unlucky, they will be impressive and bomb something spectacular from orbit and then demand worship. If things are bad, they bomb all the major population centers and demand worship from the survivors with the edge of a sword. If we are totally fucked, they carpet bomb the planet and try to wipe humanity off this planet entirely.” O’Neill explained somberly.
Mac was silent while he wrestled with the options, the graduating horrors that his friend had laid out for him. “So by going, we are doing our best to keep humanity going?”
“Yeah. There are humans out there, in the stars Mac. But they aren’t us, the mother world. We are one of the most advanced out there and if we fall, we’re screwed on so many levels. But as to why you should go? Mac, I am shoving over ten thousand people through our escape hatch and as of right now, I have a total of eight cops. I need people who have seen the weird and dealt with it. Please.” Jack was trying not to beg, Mac could tell.
Ten thousand people and only eight cops. Mac realized that Jack couldn’t be counting Grissom and his crew and the Miami group. If he added in the people he had getting ready to his possible count, Jack would have at least fifteen more cops. Not the best ratio, but a good place to start.
“We’ll be there, Jack. All of us.”
“Thank you.” Mac could hear Jack turn away from his phone and start barking orders as he hung up the phone. He didn’t have a lot of time to get everything ready before his time was up.
It was one thing for Daniel to have put forth the option of stealing everything that wasn’t nailed down. But it was another to realize that he was actually doing it. Well, Mitchell was helping by keeping track of the supply lists, because Daniel was trying to make sense of the numbers of people being staged in a warehouse over at Area 51.
Too many people, too many questions that were being thrown at his people, too much stress that they couldn’t bleed off. He had had Nyan write up and print out a quick breakdown of what was happening, what was going to happen and what the people reading the flyer needed to do when they go to their new home. The flyer had cut down on a lot of the muttering coming from his people.
But they were getting ready to start moving people away from Earth. To start the evacuation of as many people as they could, because there was no way that they would be able to evacuate people by ship. Earth had one. One ship that was doing its level best to pick up everyone on the list of the ‘Tagged’, to pick up a planetful of supplies and maybe, if there was any free time, some of Earth’s treasure. Jack had let Vala pick what she thought would be a good thing to take. Daniel was certain she was having a lot of fun.
Tapping his radio, Daniel checked in with Sam to see how she was doing in stripping Area 51 of all the things that the SGC had stored there. “Sam?”
“I know. There are a lot of things here that I am not too comfortable being stored the crystals. That damn mirror for one. And a lot of Ma’chello’s stuff is still here too. We have no idea how that will take being stored as patterns in a buffer. God, were we magpies or what? I have a whole room full of glittery crap from the various Goa’uld we’ve dealt with over the years.” The disgust that laced her voice was stark, and Daniel was briefly amused at the thought of what her face looked like.
“I bet. Make sure that we bring it all. You never know when you need to be really, really gaudy for some diplomatic function. How about the records of stuff that we sent over?” he asked.
There was a frustrated blow of breath as Sam obviously moved onto the next item on her list, “I got those first. Anything that was recent, had to do with the Ori or the Ancients got sent up first, I am poking through the storerooms to see if there are any specific things that need to be taken up separately and stored in the one dangerous vault on the Apollo. Like that damn Quantum mirror.”
“It wasn’t destroyed? I thought General Hammond destroyed that?” Daniel asked. Most of his attention was on the tablet computer in his hands. Nyan had passed it to him with a section highlighted and Daniel was reading through it quickly. Weapons? Weapons were not his forte, but he had handled enough to know that they needed guns and bullets and all sorts of other goodies that he used every day. A quick tap brought up the active email program and he had scrawled a message to Jack asking what would be good to bring along. A further tap sent the note out and he passed the tablet back to his assistant. “Nyan, check with Mitchell to make sure we have everything we need.”
“What are you talking about, Daniel?” Sam asked. “Oh, General Hammond ordered it, but the scientists over here determined that if they did try to destroy that mirror, the amount of naquadah in it would blow a hole the size of Everest in the desert here. Not a good idea, so he had it packed up.”
“Sounds like a good idea, yeah. One of the armory guys is wondering about reloading rigs for our bullet supply. What do you think?” Daniel asked as he ran his finger down the next list on a new tablet.
“I think we will need every advantage we can get, and if reloading is an option, we need to pursue it. Done! Gotta go, Daniel. I need to get the Apollo to clean out these storerooms.” Sam said and then there was a quiet beep as the line closed.
Daniel barely noticed the closing of the line as he immersed himself back into the lists that he had assigned himself. There was too much to do and not enough time to do it.
“Madame Chancellor, Monsieur President, sir, and madames. If you would walk this way?” Daniel asked as he escorted most of the cleared world leaders down to the Stargate. “We will be sending you to our Alpha Site, on the Icarus Base. They are prepared to take this opportunity to show you why we have the base there, what we do and what we are planning to do with it. Also as an added bonus, they have an X-302 program there, so if you ask, you might get one of the pilots to take you up.”
The leader for Germany gave Daniel and sardonic look at the mention of the X-3002. “Dr. Jackson, I have been in jets before. What makes this one different?”
Daniel didn’t break his stride as he continued down to the gate room. “The X-302, Madame, is a hybrid aircraft developed by the US Air Force for use in both air and space. This means that if you do desire to go on a flight, you would be able to take a trip out of the planet’s atmosphere, and into space? If there is time, the pilot might also be able to take you on a tour of the solar system. I am told the Alpha site’s planet is very beautiful from space.”
“That does sound interesting.” The German Chancellor allowed. Daniel could hear several members of the politician herd talking and when he tuned into what they were saying, most of it seemed to be about the beaming process. Good.
The archeologist was quiet as he led the herd of politicians down to the gate level. The route he was taking them on was guarded by the Mountain’s security forces and every door along the way was shut and locked. If worst came to worst, he wanted a way to funnel crowds down and not allow anyone to wander away and get lost. Because while he knew that all the rooms were empty, he did not want the various dignitaries who would be using the route to know how stripped the SGC really was. It just would not be a confidence builder.
The turn into the Gateroom was quiet as the crowd behind him and Daniel swiped his card through the reader to quickly open the blast door. Standing aside, the archeologist waved his hand to get the people following him into the room. As soon as the last politician had walked into the room, Daniel turned his post over to one of the SF’s and let him keep the way open for the other men pushing the mountain of luggage their visitors had brought with them. If the Apollo had been in position to beam everyone, Daniel would have had them do it instead of his people. Oh, well.
Looking up at the control room, Daniel circled a finger at Walter to let him know to ready the dialing computer. Stepping up to the ramp, he looked over the faces of the people before him. “Ladies and gentlemen. You are about to go through the Stargate to another planet. The base there will look a lot like the one here. If you want to go to the surface, just like here, please ask one of the base personnel. They will be happy to take you up and let you explore the surface areas.
“You will feel a bit of cold and be slightly disoriented when you after you exit the wormhole. It will pass quickly. Once you come out of the gate, please move away from it as quickly as possible, no matter how horrible you feel. We have a lot of you to get through the gate and your gear has to follow as well. Do you have any questions?”
One of the US Cabinet members raised a hand and pointed at the Gate. “How does that work and does it hurt?”
Didn’t these people pay attention to their briefings? “The Stargate is an Ancient transport method that produces a stable Lorentzian wormhole that can take you from one side of this galaxy to another. The whole thing takes about eight seconds. The trip doesn’t hurt, but the first few times are disorientating and you might be nauseous. It passes quickly.”
The older man nodded at the information and moved forward as if he wanted to be the first one through. “Sir, I would suggest that you stay behind the yellow line. The backwash from the gate opening can dematerialize you.”
The other man stepped back again, face a bit grey as he made sure to be firmly behind the yellow like. The other people who had been standing close it also moved back and left plenty of room between them and the ramp. As soon as the last person was ‘safe’. Daniel waved at Walter and motioned at him to dial up the Gate. The inner ring started to turn without the normal announcements, but each chevron clanked into place firmly.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, once you go through, please move away from the Gate. There will be people standing by to help. Walter?” The seventh clank of an encoding chevron clicked behind him and the Gate came to life with the familiar toilet bowl effect. From the way the crowd reacted, they had liked the show.
“We have the all-clear from the Alpha Site, Dr. Jackson.” Walter’s voice came over the intercom, bright and clear.
“Understood,” Daniel said with a nod and waved at the SF’s he was sending out with the herd of politicians. All of them were good men, but…. They were much bigger ass-kissers than he could stand and he really did not want to deal with them on a day-to-day basis. For the crowd they would have to deal with though, they would be perfect.
The politicos, their families, guards and whatnots were streaming by now. Each of them was carrying some form of personal bags. The German Chancellor stopped by Daniel and watched everyone go through, and then their supplies. As the last items were positioned for transport, she looked at him and asked, “Why there. Why not Atlantis?”
Daniel looked at her and thought about telling the whole truth, but decided to practice his discretion. “The last person to go through the Gate to Atlantis isn’t scheduled for another twelve or so hours, so we have time to reach a credible conclusion. This means that if we are overreacting to this threat, we will need to get you all back ASAP. If we are not overreacting, after the last person exists Midway, it will be blown so the Ori can’t take the easy route into the Pegasus Galaxy. The Apollo will pass by the Alpha site to pick you all up since you are on the way. Travel to Atlantis by ship takes three weeks by ship. I hope your people have something to read.”
Eyes lighter with understanding, the German Chancellor nodded and then walked up the ramp and through the Gate. Daniel was quiet as he watched the final people and things slated for the Alpha site head on through. Once the last of them had passed through and the power was off, he walked away muttering to himself. If anyone else had been there, they would have heard him saying, “The other reason you are going to visit the Alpha Site is that I couldn’t stand the thought of you all on Atlantis without someone to monitor you.”
The words hadn’t had time to echo through the Gateroom before there was a flash of light and the Stargate was gone. Moved to a warehouse in Nevada, where it would be shuttling the ‘Tagged’ to their new home.
Area 51, Nevada
“You know, when General O’Neill said that he wanted me to get everyone together to leave the planet forever, I didn’t think that forever was going to have a pit stop in here,” Tony complained lightly as he helped escort his fifth group of civilians to the Stargate for transport.
“Well, you made Abby as happy as all hell.” Gibbs agreed dryly. His team had been issued some discreet radios and Gibbs had made certain that he was up on how to use them. They were much easier to use than the standard radios that they had been using for years through NCIS and he was happier with them too. “Horatio, have you got your batch of people ready for transport? This group is moving through a bit quicker than we were expecting.”
“We have them moving.” Horatio agreed. The five groups of police officers had met in a conference room all on their own and hammered out a chain of command. Gibbs had been nominated over his strong protests, but he had been the highest-ranking Federal officer and Horatio, Mac and Grissom had called ‘Not it’ first. No one had even suggested that McGarrett get to try for that.
Mac was his official second with Tony getting the expanded NCIS team, combining the LA and DC teams and putting Hetty in charge of Operations. Horatio had his team still and when they got to Atlantis, would be in charge of the combined labs. There were three major crime labs that were being shipped out and a lot of overlap in skills, so Gibbs was fairly certain that he was going to be in at least one meeting with Hetty, Horatio and Mac to determine where everyone would be. Grissom wasn’t likely to be with them on a daily basis given his specialty, but they would try to keep him. Actually, given how useful many of his people’s skillsets were, he could see a lot of loaning happening in the future.
However, before they could get to that stage, they had to get thousands of people through a giant donut that put out a dangerous backflush every time they turned the damn thing on. The lesson in that had been fairly graphic and the only good thing was it hadn’t involved anything living. Thankfully, none of the civilians had been in the warehouse when the demonstration had happened.
“G, McGee, Speed, Williams? What have you been hearing from the people waiting to come on through?” Gibbs moved on to the next item on his mental checklist. There were a lot of people waiting in various staging areas outside the warehouse and it was too much to hope that they would all be good with what was going on. General O’Neill had been very blunt in his list of possible enemies and their most harmless-looking were wandering in and out of the crowds looking for anybody out of place. So far, they had come up dry, but better safe than sorry.
“Most of the people we are walking through are worried about where they are going and what will be happening here on Earth Gibbs. The few who haven’t been, seem to be the veterans of the program and are talking it up. A lot.” McGee promptly reported.
“Agreed. Lots of nerves and crying kids, Gibbs, but very few incidences of bad behavior.” Williams chimed in.
There was no report from G Callen or Speed and Gibbs turned his attention to the people passing in front of him. Thank goodness for early childhood training, everyone was moving in orderly lines and they were actually quick about it. Horatio had actually dropped his group off before the other two reported. “Gibbs? We may have something for you. Some of the scientists from Japan and China are talking and from the tones, the discussion isn’t amicable,” Speed reported from where he was camped out in with the scientist corps.
“Do we have anyone who understands both languages?” Gibbs asked.
“No.” Speed replied. “I’ll keep an eye on things, but you might want to send me some backup. My shoulder won’t take too much damage and the two groups are eyeing each other like they want to start a new feud.”
“Joy. G? Are you free to head over by Speed?” Gibbs asked.
“Sure. I can head there. Right after I cuff the asshole in front of me. He wasn’t taking ‘no’ for an answer and the lady he was getting fresh with is about to beat him to death.” Callen replied loudly. From the yelp that Gibbs heard through the microphone, he was certain that the ‘asshole’ was taken care of. And if there was someone cuffed and stuffed in a closet somewhere, he wouldn’t cry. There were things that he just didn’t want to deal with and men like that were one.
Overall, the whole evacuation thing was moving along and he was happy. Well, he would have been happier if the Ori had never come to invade, but still. He had a duty to try to keep people safe. And he was going to see it through. Once he got to the other side and had a room assigned to him though, he was going to get very, very drunk. Aliens? What in the ever living hell had DiNozzo gotten them involved in?
“General? The outpost is reporting that the Ori fleet is a bit over four hours out. Do we attack?” John Sheppard asked as he slid into the control Chair. He had managed to get everything he needed to get done in time and when the time for pickup had come, his whole family had been gathered around. They had gone to Nevada while he had been beamed over to the Antarctic Outpost. It was just as cold and unpleasant as he had remembered.
The scenery was a bit better this time though. One of the scientists who was ripping his way through all the information the Outpost had stored was a loud, vicious and very smart Canadian, which was really odd since John had thought that most of the people from that country were actually polite. He apparently had the ATA gene too and was working the Ancient equipment with ease and that was actually pretty cool. John had spent a good twenty minutes watching him decimate the scientists who had been stationed at the Outpost before heading to his duty station.
As soon as he had sat down, the status display came up and John relaxed into the grip of the equipment. The Apollo glowed in his new sight and the glyphs that he had learned meant Asgard flickered and glowed beside it in a repeating pattern. Watching it, John realized that he was watching the transporters working, moving people and then in some cases, aborting in and storing supplies mid-stream. The ZPM that was powering the whole insane thing was still glowing strong at 78%, there was a further, muted glow by the engine room. After each transport, the area glowed a bit brighter and John figured that was where they were storing everything. A quick calculation showed that the ship would have enough power to get out to Pegasus and the supply for the transporter was enough to keep it steady as well.
“Major. My name is Dr. Rodney McKay.” The obnoxious scientist had obviously finished berating his scientists and was now looking for a new something to distract himself.
“Doctor. I would shake your hand, but I am a bit distracted. What can I do for you?” John asked. Most of his attention was on passing the information from the Outpost to the Apollo and reviewing its weapons capabilities.
“Can you show us the schematics of the Outpost in a form that allows us to download the information? And all the information that is stored here about Atlantis?” There was a blur of orange by the main consoles and the sounds of someone tapping away at the Ancient computer.
John drew up the requested information and turned his attention back to the Ori. He didn’t have time to be distracted by a cute ass. Even if it was attached to a really interesting package. “General O’Neill, the Ori are slowing down. ETA is now five hours and counting. Do I engage?”
“Five hours?” General O’Neill asked. From the background sounds, John figured that he was somewhere on the Apollo.
“Yes, sir. I have them within range and from the information I am seeing, I can take out at least six of the battlecruiser class ships.” John reported with a high degree of confidence.
“Hmmm… If they get closer, do you think you can get more?” O’Neill asked.
There was new information streaming across what amounted to Chairs HUD that had to come from the Apollo. It looked like it was a report from the battle they had been in only a few years before. A hasty review and John was certain that he and the Outpost would be able to take advantage of the new insights into the Ori battle strategy.
John nodded as he integrated his new insights into his battle plan. “Yes, sir. If they advance to within another three hours travel, we should be able to take out a good dozen ships and increase the damage on the others to be crippling in most cases. If nothing else, they will require extensive repair times to be useful again.”
“Major, while I have everything downloading, what can I do to help?” came the unexpected offer from the sea of orange.
“McKay? How goes the data harvesting? And what can you do to help?” the General asked.
“It is going about as well as we can expect, General. Thankfully, we have been moving information out of here for the last few years and the Major is letting us get the last few bits out of the main system. As for what I can do to help, I may be able to tweak the guidance program on the drones so the Major can let them do their thing without him needing to pay a lot of attention to them.”
Now that sounded promising. If there was a way that John could do this job and not feel like he was being divided into a billion pieces, he was all for it.
Apparently, the General agreed because all he said was. “Sounds good. Better get moving on that. O’Neill out.”
“Right. Major, think of where we are in the solar system and put a subtle ring around the Ori. I need to see how the system here reacts to aiming drones.” McKay commanded as he turned away.
John did as he was commanded and sank into the Ancient systems. Five more hours on Earth if things went sour. At least his family was safe.
“Daniel! Is everything that you wanted in the databanks?” Jack asked as he ran down to the transporter room with Vala hot on his heels. All the main members of SG1 were already on board, the only people missing were Daniel and Mitchell and they were down at the SGC, doing something.
“We’re clear, Jack. Beam us out of here.” Daniel said calmly.
Goodie. “Ellis? Beam Dr. Jackson and Colonel Mitchell up please.” Jack requested as he turned the last corner to get to the dedicated spot for transports.
There was the normal flash of light, both men appeared, and they looked like shit. Neither looked like they had slept since the whole mess had started and from the trembles, it looked like they had been hitting the stims and coffee way too hard. Jack made his way over to Daniel and started herding him towards the med bay. Vala was right behind him, taking care of Mitchell. Good.
“What were the two of you doing?” Vala asked as the four of them squeezed into one of the elevators.
“Setting traps and arming the Mountain’s self destruct,” Daniel said simply.
Jack wasn’t surprised and nodded. Even if they had stripped out everything useful from the facility, it was still a target and it made sense to use it to get some of their own back.
The background hum of the ship deepened as the four of them made their way into Medical. From the feeling that he was getting, Jack knew that the Apollo was moving and moving quickly. Tapping his earpiece, he moved the open channel away from the inner-ship channel to the battle channel. It took him only a few minutes of listening while Daniel was checked in to come to a realization that was fairly depressing. The Ori were maneuvering to fire on the Outpost, they still had two people down there, and a ZPM that they could not allow to either fall into the hands of the Ori or be destroyed.
“Ellis, patch me through to Sheppard,” Jack demanded. As soon as he heard the hum of an open line, Jack started talking, “Sheppard, I need you to get the hell out of the Chair, set the self destruct, pull that ZPM and get ready for transport. Grab McKay while you are about it.”
“Yes, sir.” The Major responded. His voice was slurred and mostly vacant, but Jack could hear him moving.
“O’Neill, I pulled the ZPM and set up a naquadah generator in its place. It will keep a minimal cloak on this place for another hour or so and the basic shield around the control room. Because the elevator shaft is totally flooded and Antarctica has a new inland ocean. Colonel Ellis, can you beam us up? The Major needs some medical attention.” McKay demanded.
Another flash of light and McKay and Sheppard were standing before him. One irritated Canadian scientist supporting one really tried Air Force Major who was cradling a ZPM. The last of Earth’s official defenders had left. The planet was now on its own.
“Ellis, you have a go. Get us out of here.” Jack said quietly.
Adria, the Orici, leader of the Ori watched as a Tau’ri ship moved out of orbit and then into hyperspace. From their heading, they were fleeing blindly, there was nothing in that direction that was important. Turning her attention to the planet below, she smiled. Time to teach the Tau’ri the power of Origin.