Almost half an hour had passed. Now and then they had heard distant shouting, but Ren'tash had not showed up.
"What if Ren'tash is dead? Or captured?" Daniel asked. "I mean, they have got to have become suspicious! What if Ren'tash is being tortured?"
"He could end up giving us up. I agree. We shouldn't stay here much longer," O'Neill said.
"Ren'tash would never give us up!" Lantash exclaimed.
"Even so - what if he's dead? We've got a better chance of making it out of here while there's still chaos, and Ba'al's out playing Bocce," O'Neill insisted.
"What?" Lantash frowned, not understanding him. He sighed, then shook his head. "You may be correct. We should attempt to make our escape."
"Could we keep an eye out for that... sarcophagus you mentioned before?" Argent asked.
"Ren'tash!" Lantash exclaimed, running to his brother and fellow Tok'ra, who was lying on the floor in a pool of blood.
Many Jaffa lay around him, most of them bearing marks of having been thrown by a hand device. They were all dead. It had obviously been an intense battle.
Ren'tash moved a little, the coughed, blood seeping from his mouth. "Lantash. You... you need to get out... before Ba'al comes back. Joh'nar... had suspected me... and Ba'al's First Prime... found out I am a Tok'ra." He coughed violently.
"Shh... be quiet!" Lantash said. "We've got a healing device."
Ren'tash shook his head. "No... I'm too badly wounded. Lantash... the First Prime... he contacted Ba'al... you can get out now. If you hurry."
"What about a sarcophagus?" Sam asked. "I mean, I know you don't normally use them, but..."
"No. It is... I destroyed it. So... so they could not use it to bring back Joh'nar... The things he has done to the humans!" Ren'tash suddenly became quiet.
"Ren'tash!" Lantash sounded pained, fearing his brother was dead. He quickly checked on the other man, then got a look of relief when he found he was still alive. Remembering what they had discussed a day or so ago, he suddenly turned to Argent. "If you become his host, it's very likely the transformation has not gone too far for him to reverse."
"What!" Argent stared at him in disbelief.
"Actually, that may be true... but it would have to be very soon for it to work," Jacob said. He looked at Ren'tash. "For other reasons as well, of course."
"You're crazy! You can't expect me to do that! Let an alien lifeform live inside me, share my mind and body!"
Lantash gave Martouf control. "As it is with Lantash and I. I understand your hesitation, but have I not convinced you blending can - and almost always is - wonderful and rewarding? Do you really feel the whole idea is more abhorrent to you than becoming a werewolf? As I understand it, that is something you hate."
"But I'd have to leave Earth, my family!"
"Not necessarily. It might be a good idea to have someone here on Earth, representing the Tok'ra. You could work with Stargate Command," Jacob suggested. "Don't you think they'd permit that?" He looked to O'Neill.
"Normally not, but after this whole fiasco with Ba'al infiltrating everything, then I don't think they'd put up much of a fight. Of course, that's only if we succeed in cleaning up this mess!"
"I need a moment to think," Argent said.
"Do so - but do not take too long." Martouf gave Ren'tash a worried look.
Argent was quiet for several moments, then he nodded. "Yes. I will do it."
"Argent?" Martouf wondered, worriedly. "Are the two of you all right?"
"Yes... but this is so strange..." Argent said, sitting up. "I mean..."
"We don't have time for this!" O'Neill exclaimed. "You were out for several minutes!"
"Ren'tash... was weakened from trying to keep Wirran alive." Argent got up.
"Of course... Are you still a werewolf?" Martouf asked.
"Ren'tash is working on reversing the changes. It had almost been too long, but he assures me he will be successful." Argent smiled.
"That's great - now let's get out of here before Ba'al returns!" Jacob said.
"There are still many loyal Jaffa in this place - Ren'tash will guide me so we follow the safest route," Argent told them. "He blocked off part of the compound earlier, by shutting some electronic safety doors, trapping most of the Jaffa, but he doesn't think it will be long before they figure out how to overload it. The First Prime is pretty smart, unfortunately."
"Well, what are waiting for, then?" O'Neill said.
They were hurrying through an underground escape tunnel, which Ba'al had ordered built, but which almost no one else knew existed. Ren'tash had found some mention of it one time he was snooping in Ba'al's records, and after some dedicated searching, he had found it.
"The tunnel should exit just inside a small forest, some 600 feet south of the compound," Argent said. He suddenly stopped.
"What is it? Something wrong?" O'Neill asked, warily.
"No... it's just... Ren'tash was looking through some of my memories." Argent grimassed a little, still not completely comfortable with the idea. "He just now realized that we have obtained proof of who is working with Ba'al, and who else cannot be trusted."
"Yes?" Martouf said.
Argent sighed, then steeled himself. "I'll let him explain." He hesitantly bowed his head, as Ren'tash directed him to, and as he had seen the other Tok'ra do.
Ren'tash took control, promising Argent he would be quick. "The lack of proof, and the lack of a list of people involved, is the reason we have not been able to move against Ba'al. I have contact to a small group of people formerly employed by Stargate Command. With the information you have obtained, we will be able to expose and capture those involved. We need to contact them, as fast as possible, so we can detain Ba'al and the people working with him at Stargate Command."
"Not to be a spoilsport, but why would anyone believe you?" O'Neill asked. "You're a Tok'ra, and they probably left in disgrace - I mean, if they're not working for the current leaders at the SGC."
"With the lists of people involved, we can contact those higher up in command in your Air Force. Before we could not even know if the person we approached was involved," Ren'tash explained.
"Of course. And with proof, they can then move on the people involved, and capture Ba'al and whomever else." O'Neill smiled. "That's great!"
Ren'tash gave Argent control again.
He took a deep breath, and flexed his fingers, clearly glad to have control again. "That's going to take a while getting used to!" He smiled, looking a bit embarrassed. "Let's get to a phone. I need to contact my sister, and have her bring us the stuff we found. Ren'tash says we can hide in the homes of some of the former SG team members... we just need to convince them he is Ren'tash."
"My sister will be here tomorrow morning," Argent told them, having called her.
"Great, then let's go see if Colonel Dixon has been able to get hold of those he can thrust," Jacob said. "I got the impression you know him?" He looked at O'Neill.
"Yeah, Dave is an okay guy. I trust him."
Jacob nodded. "Good. Let's get going, then."
"Where did the others go?" Argent asked.
"They went to pick up some food and stuff," Daniel told him, smiling.
"Of course. I was just thinking that there's probably a lot of people in this city that are loyal to Ba'al or the current leaders at Stargate Command - most of them probably without knowing what those people are planning. In any case, some of them will probably have been given descriptions of us. Right now anyone we meet could be an informer, so we should be careful."
"Relax - we know what we're doing. Besides, Carter and Martouf have got Teal'c with them," O'Neill said. "Let's get to Dixon's place. There should be several people there I know - I look forward to seeing their faces when they realize I've returned from the dead!"
Sam, Martouf/Lantash, and Teal'c had arrived shortly after O'Neill and the others, bringing the food. After they had eaten, they sat down with Dixon and his group, to discuss and plan what they were going to do.
"All right, then we're agreed. Tomorrow, when we have the lists in hand, we'll contact whatever General that's trustworthy, and show him the proof. We'll then move on Stargate Command and Ba'al's compound, hopefully capturing all the leaders," Dixon said.
"Only problem is that they'll more than likely suspect we're coming - Ba'al will, at any rate," Jacob pointed out. "As for the leaders at Stargate Command? We don't even know if General Jenkins - or whatever his name was - is still there. Ba'al may well have killed him."
"That's a problem for later. We have no way of knowing right now, so we can just as well go to sleep," O'Neill decided, yawning. "It's almost 11PM - why don't we get a good long night's sleep, for once?"