Note that the last chapter has two versions, one that is NC-17 and one that is PG-13.
Chapter 8 summary: The Tok'ra and the Tau'ri undertake a joint mission to save Egeria.
[ Chapter 1: A New Reality | Chapter 2: Old Friends, New Friends | Chapter 3: Jolinar | Chapter 4: Getting Acquainted | Chapter 5: The NID | Chapter 6: Cimmeria | Chapter 7: The Tok'ra | Chapter 8: Mission with the Tok'ra | Chapter 9, version I: Together Again (NC-17) | Chapter 9, version II: Together Again (PG-13) ]
Then came the day of the first joint mission between the Tok'ra and the Tau'ri. They had arrived on Pangar when it was early morning there, making sure to bring large enough forces that bloodshed could hopefully be avoided. SG-1 was there, together with 9 other SG-teams, 8 Tok'ra, and Janet. After the Pangarans had received the ultimatum, they were still not quite ready to do as the Tok'ra and the Tau'ri had hoped. Apparently, the Pangarans were convinced they would be able to take on a couple of Goa'uld, should any show up. Annoyed, Jolinar got an idea to further entice the Pangarans into cooperating. She discussed it briefly with Sam, who reluctantly agreed to use the threat, since that was all it was. Jolinar addressed the Pangaran delegation.
"If you do not cooperate; then, in the unlikely event that the Goa'uld do not wipe you out and enslave the few survivors as an example to the rest of the Galaxy, we will engineer a plague and distribute it across your world. A plague which will make your 'Great Death' of 140 years ago seem as gentle as the common cold. It is an alternative you do not wish to explore." She said with a cold conviction.
While this was not something they had agreed upon beforehand, it turned out to be a very effective threat. The Pangarans believed Jolinar to be in earnest. They quickly backed down and agreed to the ultimatum. To be honest, they also had to admit the deal was not a bad one. Their people would be cured of their tretonin-addiction and they would receive medicine, supplies, and other assistance from Earth.
Finally, the Tok'ra healers and Janet were allowed to examine Egeria thoroughly. They would need to prepare a special tank for her to be moved to the Tok'ra base in. Meanwhile, the rest of the Tok'ra and five of the SG-teams - two teams guarded the healers and two were was stationed near the gate - waited in a luxurious room provided by the Pangarans. There were several bowls of fruit and many plates with various delicacies on the table.
When everyone had been sitting there for some time without eating anything, O'Neill decided the fruit was probably harmless. He grabbed one of the apples and was just about to take a bite from it when Lantash snatched it from him and put it back.
"Hey! What are you doing!"
"We do not know it is safe to eat - and the Pangarans have not actually told us we could do so. It could be a trap."
"Aren't you supposed to encourage me to eat it?"
Sam gave O'Neill a quick kick over his leg, making Lantash send them a strange look.
"I will explain it later." Sam said.
About an hour later, the Tok'ra healers and Janet came into the room. The others turned expectantly to them, eager to hear news of Egeria.
"That was fast! So, how did it go?" O'Neill wondered.
"Is Egeria going to be all right?" Lantash asked, then immediately got a funny expression on his face.
The other Tok'ra who had been waiting in the room quickly came to the same realization as Lantash.
"What's up?" O'Neill asked. "Why is nobody saying anything?"
"Janet?" Sam looked at her friend.
Janet nodded slowly. "Yes. There was no other way."
"What are you talking about? Will someone please tell me what is going in?" O'Neill said, beginning to get annoyed.
Janet turned to him. "It became necessary to find a host for Egeria and there were no other available females. One of the Tok'ra wanted to sacrifice herself for Egeria, but I couldn't let her do that. Not when there was another option."
"Yes. I am Egeria's host."
"Are you out of your mind? Weren't they supposed to just stick her in one of those healing tanks - or whatever they call them?"
"Yes, that was the plan. However..."
"I apologize, but we do not have time for this!" One of the Tok'ra healers said, then turned to O'Neill. "One of the SG-teams that was guarding the chaapa'ai returned with information that there was military activity in the area. They suspect Pangaran soldiers are being stationed - and more are arriving constantly. If we wait much longer we cannot get out safely, at least not while carrying a large healing tank. Moving Egeria to such a tank will take a long time to do, if it is to be done without too much danger. Now, however, that is not a problem as Egeria is safely in Doctor Janet Fraiser. We need some of you to accompany her through the chaapa'ai - officially to get some needed equipment. Then, later the rest of us can follow with a tank containing what appears to be a symbiote. If the Pangarans wishes to attack it then, they can, without any risk of harming Egeria."
Janet nodded. "There is also the matter of making the improved tretonin for the Pangarans. While we have the version that works for Jaffa, a good deal of changes need to be made before it can be used to cure the Pangarans. Egeria knows how to do this, but it is far easier when she is able to help directly, than just telling us how to from her tank. Now she can."
O'Neill sighed, but conceded. It was obvious they had thought it through and that it had been the right call for Janet to become host to Egeria, even though he could not say he was exactly pleased to have her become a host as well.
"May we talk briefly to Egeria? Is she well?" Lantash wondered.
"She is well, but she is currently weak from healing and need to rest before she takes control. However, when she has had a good nights sleep she will be well enough to talk to you." Janet got a blank look as she listened to Egeria. "She asks me to tell you all that she is very proud of what her children have achieved and that she looks forward to being together with you all again."
"All right, enough talk for now." O'Neill said. "I assume your 'escort' need to look innocent - they're just supposed to help you carry stuff, after all. Carter, you and Daniel...and one or two Tok'ra - Martouf? and...uh...I don't remember your name..." O'Neill said, pointing at Aldwin.
"My name is Aldwin. I would be honoured to escort our Queen."
"As will I." Martouf said.
"Good. Hurry on." O'Neill said, sitting down again. "Take good care of the Doctor - and Egeria, of course."
The little group went to the Stargate and walked leisurely through, talking about nothing in particular. They informed the SG-teams near the gate - loudly - that they had to go pick up some things for use when transferring Egeria. All went well, and they arrived safely on Earth.
As soon as the SG-teams guarding the gate had reported Janet/Egeria and the others were safely through, the rest of the people from the SGC and the Tok'ra left for the gate, carrying a partially transparent tank with a mock-up of a symbiote. When they approached the area near the Stargate, they noticed movement in the forest close by. Suddenly a single shot was fired, followed by some commotion. Moments later large numbers of Pangaran soldiers began appearing among the trees.
"O'Neill to all troops. We're under attack!" O'Neill shouted into his radio.
All the SG-teams lifted their P-90's and prepared to defend themselves. The Tok'ra, apparently deciding zat'nik'tels were not enough, pulled out hand devices from bags and pockets and put them on. They all ran for cover among the trees, as fast as possible.
O'Neill and three others were hiding behind the roots of a large, fallen tree. One of them, the Tok'ra called Malek, stuck his head out for a moment and checked on their attackers.
"A group of 9 or 10 Pangaran soldiers are approaching from our left. They are about 50 feet away." He reported, back in safety again.
"All right. On my mark, all of you fire at them at once. Lieutenant Jones, take the far left. You..." he pointed at Malek. "Take the guys on the right. Teal'c and I are hitting the middle of the group." He waited a few moment more to give the enemy time to come a little closer, then gave his signal. They all jumped up and fired several rounds at the enemies before they took cover again. The Pangarans dove for protection as well.
"Report!" O'Neill ordered.
"I got one." Jones reported.
"Two men were hit by my shock wave. They will not be getting up again for a long time, if ever."
"Keep it short!" O'Neill turned to Teal'c. "You?"
"Two as well."
"I hit one - that leaves 3 or 4." O'Neill half-rose and risked a peek. "They've started approaching again - there's 4 of'em."
"Same strategy as last time?" Teal'c asked.
"You got it."
They again jumped up and started firing. When one more of the Pangarans fell, the three others in his group fled. However, O'Neill and his people did not have time to relax, because another group of enemy soldiers showed up only moments after the first had left. When this one came under fire, they immediately ran for cover behind the trees and bushes, not to show up again.
"You think they ran away?" O'Neill asked of no one in particular, when the Pangarans did not show up again after several minutes.
"Perhaps..." Teal'c began. Before he could complete the sentence, Malek yelled at them. He had heard a twig snap and turned in time to see the same group of soldiers from before, approaching from behind.
"Take cover! Behind you!" Seeing one of the soldiers take aim, Malek grabbed O'Neill and pulled him aside.
O'Neill cried out, as the bullet that had been about to hit him in the back of the head now struck his upper left leg.
Letting go of O'Neill, Malek raised his hand device and shot a shock wave towards the attackers, at the same time as Teal'c and Jones opened fire. Soon three of the enemy soldiers were lying on the ground and the others were in retreat.
"Did you get the bastard who shot me?" O'Neill clutched his leg, trying to sit.
"We got him, O'Neill." Teal'c said.
"Good." He turned to Malek. "Thanks - I don't want to think about were that bullet would have hit, if you hadn't pulled me aside."
Malek smiled briefly. "It was fortunate I heard their approach soon enough."
They waited a little longer, keeping a wary eye on their surroundings. Soon it was obvious all the enemy troops were fleeing. Sure enough, shortly after they got a message on the radio that the SG-teams at the stargate had called for reinforcements. This had been too much for the Pangarans and their leader - Commander Tegar - had surrendered. He had been in control of the renegade troops - the government had not.
Teal'c and Malek helped O'Neill back to the stargate and soon all personnel were safely back at the SGC.
In the infirmary. O'Neill was half-sitting, half-lying on one of the examination beds. The rest of SG-1, as well as Lantash and Malek were standing nearby, talking.
"Damn! Those Pangarans are a bit much, don't ya think?" O'Neill exclaimed. "Here we come, to help them - give them a cure for their own stupidity, and offer aid and stuff...and what do with get in return? They attack us!" He indicated his leg. "I say we fire bomb the whole planet! Toss napalm over the place!That'll teach'em!"
"What is napalm?" Lantash wondered.
"Gasoline thickened with various coagulants, traditionally naphthenic and palmitic acids..." Sam began.
"Burns hot as hell and sticks to the skin and everything else. Generally pretty nasty stuff." O'Neill said, still looking like he wanted to use it on the Pangarans.
Lantash nodded. "I see. I can understand why you think it suitable. The Pangarans will regret their treason. Never again shall they try to kill or torture our queen - or our allies!" His eyes flashed in anger.
"I concur." Malek said.
"No! You will not do something like that!" The voice of a symbiote demanded from behind them. They all turned to see Egeria, having taken control despite her fatigue. "They do not all deserve such a fate, just to punish a few who were led astray by this Commander Telgar . Nor should they suffer and die when the faulty tretonin is depleted. I will help make a cure, and then we will keep our word and aid the Pangarans ." She stopped looking angry and smiled a little at them. "I cannot long be angry at you. My children...I know you only wish to avenge my suffering, but there is no need. Forgive them. This is how I wish them to know the Tok'ra...and the Tau'ri."
Everyone looked a little ashamed, and quickly conceded. Janet took control again, allowing Egeria to relax. She insisted on examining O'Neill's wound before one of the Tok'ra healers used a healing device to repair the damage. The few other wounded were treated likewise, before Janet and Egeria agreed to retire to their quarters. They would not be allowed to leave the base for reasons of security, but they would take a few days off to recuperate. After that they would help make a cure for the defective tretonin many of the Pangarans were dependent on, before moving to a maximally secure Tok'ra base. Several Tok'ra would stay to help her, while she was on Earth. They would also be part of preparing a temporary treaty between the Tok'ra and the Tau'ri, until an alliance could be formed. In connection with this, SGC would begin to look into the best ways for finding people who might be interested in becoming Tok'ra hosts.
The Tok'ra had also agreed to remove Amaunet from Sha're as soon as the child was born. This was expected to happen at around the same time Sam was to get her medal in Washington. Until then, Sha're would continue to stay at the SGC.
Since there were still almost 2 weeks until Sam had to be in Washington for the ceremony, she was allowed to take that time off and be with the Tok'ra. She and Jolinar were looking forward to spending some time with Martouf and Lantash, so they could get to know Sam and she them.
Next chapter is the NC-17 version of the last chapter. If this is not your cup of tea, jump past that to get to the PG-13 version of the last chapter.