I still can't believe we managed to capture that snake, Apophis. It was like a dream come true. I mean there we all were just sitting around doing nothing waiting for the Tok'Ra to show up when all of a sudden this Death Glider comes in low, about to crash on our heads. Who should it contain, but our old friend the Snake Head.
It was when he started to beg for help that I nearly laughed. Teal'c was ready to kill him there and then, to tell you the truth so was I but the voice of reason, Captain Samantha Carter, told me to take him back with us.
General Hammond was not too pleased, I can tell you, but he realized the strategic value of holding him. As he was carted off by the medics to the infirmary, I turned to look at my team. The expressions that I saw did not please me. Teal'c looked as if he were about to do bodily harm to someone, Sam was nearly as bad. The one that worried me the most, however, was Daniel. His face was void of all emotion, he just looked off into space. This was not the reaction I expected from him, you would have thought that he would be happy that we had captured the man responsible for ripping apart his family and taking him away from the best home he has ever known. Instead he just looked bemused and walked off to the locker room to change.
It was like that for the rest of the debriefing, he seemed almost too detached when Carter was talking about the Ashrak torture device and when we were up in the conference room he was actually defending the rights of that snake! I mean here was me relishing the fact that he was going to die and then there is Daniel and Carter telling me that we should be respecting the rights of the host as well. I could have kicked myself though when I came out with that line about how much of the host was still around.As soon as I'd said it I could see Daniel's face turn to stone, from the corner of my eye, it passed quickly though. I couldn't believe tha General was asking us to protect that evil SOB. I knew I should' a shot him, and I was right.
Now don't get me wrong I'm not the kind of person that normally enjoys watching people suffer, but there was something decidedly pleasing about seeing Apophis lying in that bed with metal pins sticking out of his legs. It felt really good to tell him to go to hell when he asked me for a new host. Things, however, started to fall apart from then on. As soon as he mentioned the name, Sokar. He had set us up, even though he was dying he was still able to try and destroy our world.
Things just went from bad to worse. We all congregated down in that little hole that Daniel likes to call his office. I personally find that place creepy, I mean the guy has skulls and other stuff that had come out of the past on every spare inch of space. But there is something in there that is so essentially Daniel that I tend not to notice it when he's in there as well. I suppose it serves as a reminder to me of what he was really supposed to be doing to earn his living. Robbing various graves and digging around in library's for ancient texts, not gating all over the galaxy running into aliens that only ever seem to want to kill him. I was, however, reminded of why he was on the team, just by being in the room. Daniel was our only hope of finding out about the more obscure references to the Goauld, from within Earth's ancient history.
I could tell something was bugging him though, when he was referring to Sokar he began to babble. Whether this was just the subject matter, having just discovered that the original Satan was about to come knocking at our door was not a cheery thought, or if the whole situation was beginning to get to him, I couldn't tell. It was then that we all heard the alarms coming from the gate room, signaling an incoming wormhole.
"This is it," I thought to myself, "This is where it all begins."
It was obvious that there was nothing that I could do to help Carter find out who, or what had hit the Iris, so the General ordered me back to the interrogation. That was when I got one of the biggest surprises of the day. Daniel asked to talk to him. General Hammond looked to me at this point, I don't know why but I nodded my approval. Throughout this Daniel would not look either of us in the eye. That was what probably set the warning bells off in my mind. It had been some time now since Daniel had been so nervous around the General or even myself that he would not look at us when he suggested something, it was as if he had gone back to fearing our reaction. It was hen that I made up my mind to try and watch out for him when he went to talk to Apophis.
I kept telling myself, "I am not spying on him. I am just here incase he gets into trouble." It still felt wrong though. I watched silently and unobserved from the observation gallery above the heavily guarded room where Apophis was situated. As Daniel walked into the room I watched Apophis wake up. He summoned my friend to his bedside, calling him by name. My rage started to boil again as he taunted Daniel, saying how beautiful Amonette was, how superior she was to Sha're.
I watched as Daniel just stood there and calmly defended himself to the Snake Head. Then Daniel did something that made my blood run cold. All of a sudden it was if something inside of him just snapped, I looked closely at his face and saw the look of pure hatred that had taken residence there. That was the moment that the Daniel Jackson that I have come to know well disappeared right in front of my eyes.
The man I was watching talking to Apophis began talking of the child he had delivered on Abydos, using that fact to taunt the self proclaimed God into telling where his wife was Daniel had managed to stop Apophis in his tracks. He was stunned , the thought that the Tau'ri could have taken away his new host was almost ludicrous. He had to go back to taunting the scientist about his wife. Daniel then whispered in a deadly voice, that made me shiver, " If you don't tell me where she is, I'll kill you right here." Apophis dismissed him saying he did not have the will, but at that moment I considered Daniel to be more deadly than the most hardened soldier. I can tell you now that it was a sight I never wanted to see again. I was just about to go down there and stop the whole thing when Sam beet me to it.
It took me a while to recover from what I had seen in the medical room. Never in a million years would I have ever thought to see Daniel, peace loving gentle scientist who wouldn't handle a gun unless it was absolutely necessary Daniel, actually threaten to kill someone in cold blood, even though he was the man who had kidnapped his wife and turned her into an alien queen. I hurried up to the control room, in time to get there before Daniel and Carter and make it look as if I'd been there a while.
After the Tok'Ra had arrived I didn't get a lot of time to think about the effect that Apophis had had on Daniel. They had asked to see him, after they had failed to pursued us to hand him over to Sokar. Unfortunately he was not very lucid, he kept calling for Amonette. I saw Daniel's face, pain and anger was all that I saw there this time, not the hatred that I had seen when he was interrogating him. Even that look disappeared when the host emerged. Then all Hell broke loose. Sokar gave us a call.
Things were beginning to get pretty hot when Daniel came up with his brilliant idea to dial out to stop Sokar getting a wormhole through to us. Everyone was down to t-shirts, taking off their over shirts due to the heat. All except Daniel and Carter. Carter looked hot though, but Daniel wasn't even sweating much. Now that I think about it it was probably due to the fact that he had lived on Abydos for a year, from what I remember it could get pretty hot there.
General Hammond ordered me to continue the interrogation but when I got down there I found myself talking to an ancient Egyptian, the host was out again. I ordered the guard to bring Daniel down, I was hoping that he could help him. This time when Daniel spoke to the man lying on the bed it was with compassion, all trace of the hatred from earlier gone. I wondered how he was so able to separate the two beings so easily, I must admit I was still having trouble. I watched as the host began speaking to Daniel in the soft fluid language of ancient Egypt, the same language spoken by the people of Abydos. Daniel would translate perfectly as the man spoke, when he had finished Daniel surprised both me and Dr Frasier by speaking back to him, in a soft calming voice that seemed to calm the poor wretch that had lived for thousands of years without having any control on his body.
By the time Daniel had finished he had promised a religious ceremony for the dying man. Now I'm not generally religious by nature but some how I couldn't feel grateful for what my friend was going to do for the man. By the time Daniel had come back though, the Goauld had died and all that was left was the shell. I recognized the little statue he carried in his hand as he came back in. It had been sat on one of the shelves in his office, he was also carrying some kind of blanket.
Daniel began the ceremony, speaking softly in the native language, translating for us along the way. I have said to Daniel before that I am constantly amazed by his many talents, I mean it, I got a chance to see another one that day. Priest of ancient cultures extrordinaire.
Teal'c was not as forgiving as Daniel had been. He still saw the tyrant that had ruled his life for so long, and who can blame him. I felt almost relieved when we sent the body back through the 'gate. But when Martoof told us about the sarcophagus in Sokar's posetion, I couldn't help but feel something for the scribe who had thought that his nightmare had ended, but it was really about to begin again.
Finally it was over for another day, I couldn't help but think if we gained anything from the whole encounter.On the upside we managed to get a rapid dialing device for the computers and a way of contacting the Tok'Ra, but other than that I can't think of anything else. On the downside we managed to make yet another enemy, we managed to just about cook the entire facility and I saw a side of a friend that I never thought could exist. I drove Daniel home that night.
The journey was made in silence. When we got to his building I pulled up at the curb and was about to say something but I stopped myself. Daniel is normally very private when it comes to his feelings and I didn't think he would appreciate me prying into a side of him that almost never sees the light of day, one that he would never show to his friends. He thanked me and got out of the car.
As he reached the building I wound down my window and said to him "Hey Danny! If you need to talk, just pick up the phone."
He just nodded and went inside. I don' t know what made me say that, I don't like to talk about feelings either but this was one time that I'll make an exception.