"You will bow to my awesome power. There is nothing that can stop
the destruction I bring upon you. Prepare to meet your doom!"
Anubis, Redemption, Part 1
"Anybody want to wish me luck?"
Colonel Jack O'Neill, Redemption, Part 2
Jack cocked his head as
Carter's voice came through his headset. She sounded excited. 'That's
my girl,' Jack chortled to himself. 'You pulled a solution out of
your butt again - and saved our asses to boot.'
across the void in her words. It was clear to him that she needed time to
get it all set up, and that was up to him to find her
"Alright, well, in the meantime, I'll
just... keep falling." Jack knew Carter wouldn't let him down; she
never had and never would.
As he waited, Jack winced and blinked
sweat out of his eyes. A little refrigeration would be welcome right now,
and he wished they hadn't pulled so much of the life support systems out,
especially the temperature control part. Sweat trickled down across his
ribs and he could feel his fingers slipping around inside his flight
gloves making maintaining his tight grip on the stick take more focus then
he cared for.
The fact that the gate didn't look
white-hot didn't mean it wasn't turning his ride into a flying toaster
oven. And the idea that it was positioned squarely under his butt gave
Jack an almost irrational desire for an old-fashioned chicken plate. The
men who crewed Huey copters in Vietnam were in the habit of installing
thick steel plates under their seats to protect their assets - the family
jewels - from stray ordinance. Though the 'chicken plates' were more
psychological than physical protection, he wished he had something similar
between him and his explosively dangerous cargo - like about
three-gazillion miles of crowded vacuum.
Instrument readouts, what there was
left of the flight instruments that is, jumped and juddered as the ship
and 'gate fell. Jack could feel every molecule of air in the resultant
jolt of teeth against teeth.
on. Carter,' Jack projected,
hoping for her voice sooner rather than later. His forearms burned with
his efforts to keep the craft under control and he was beginning to
realize just what a soup bone endured in the pot.
"We're done! Uploading the
new program, sir. All you'll have to do now is activate the generator."
Jack nodded. "Roger that."
"You won't have much time,"
she cautioned. Did he hear some worry in her voice? On the heels of his
mental query came his dismissal of it as a factor. Whether she was worried
or not was moot at this stage of the operation. Now it was in his hands -
quite literally - yep, no pressure there.
"I know," he acknowledged.
"Sir," she paused. "If this works..."
"Sir," Sam added.
"What?" Jack snapped and then regretted it.
"Good luck." She sounded
apologetic, and for that, he didn't growl a reply. She of all people knew
what would/could happen. Heck, she'd probably already calculated his rate
of decent. That is if their current plan worked. And it had all been going
so well, hadn't it?
To distract himself, Jack
pulled his visor over his eyes, and let himself sink into the relative
calm and comfort of his training. "Activating Hyperspace generator," he
intoned as his long fingers flipped the toggles. "Now..."
His eyes widened as the
misty hyperspace window appeared in front of him. Unlike the last time,
the X-302 arrowed straight for the middle of the murky opening that led to
god only knew where. Not that it mattered, as long as it took his aircraft
and its deadly cargo far far away.
Jack reached upwards and
wrapped his fingers around the twin levers on either side of his head,
grasped them and pulled firmly. Then he bent his head forward and squeezed
his eyes shut, held his breath and expelled it when he heard and felt the
popping sound of the explosives firing that would separate and propel his
command module away from the body of the X-302.
The screech of protesting
metal set his teeth on edge as his module protested his actions. Its rapid
and then aborted surge upwards had his stomach climbing up his throat.
'Oh, so not good!' He swallowed
bile and muttered. "Come on you son of a bitch, you can do it."
With one last
eardrum-shattering screech, the module and X-302 parted company. Suddenly
free of the weight of the stargate and aircraft, the command module bucked
upward and then away. Jack opened his eyes and chanced a look around him.
Then he heard a loud bang, as he was jerked to one side, so hard that he
bit the inside of his mouth, his vision filled with an incandescent
If he could have screamed
he would have, but his lungs wouldn't work. Nothing worked, except for his
nerves. Oh, but they worked all right. Pain coursed along them, his body
riddled with white hot threads pulsing with blue fire until he reached an
orgasm-like peak, then darkness flooded across his consciousness.
In what felt like the next
instant bursting bubbles of light erupted behind his eyeballs, followed
closely by his body being violently thrown into the safety straps. His
ears were assailed with the scream of atmosphere against ceramic hull
plate and Plexiglas canopy. Through the light show the world beyond the
clear canopy oscillated between black and blue.
Instinct thrust out Jack's
arm to ground himself against the inner hull of what was now nothing more
than a composite box dangling from a blossom of parachutes. His throbbing
head did the math; he'd lost a couple of minutes back there somewhere.
He'd judged the loss a small price to pay; he'd come way too close to
taking that one-way trip 'with' the gate. Absently sucking on his lip, he
tasted the tang of his own blood, not entirely sure just why it was
Afterimages of jagged blue
lightening overlaid his vision, and he tingled in the most annoying way,
his sense of touch so muted he doubted that he had contact with anything,
let alone the flight seat he was firmly strapped into.
Just as he began to fear
that way too much had been pulled from the X-302 he finally found the dim
flashing red telltale of the capsule's beacon. At least they would be able
to track him down; because there was no way that he was going to get a
message out. That portion of the control panel was sending up lazy curls
of smoke, fouling the air with the acrid taste of burnt metal and
Like any good pilot his
hands automatically sought out the fire extinguisher for just such
emergencies, only his gloved hands - after a frustrating search because of
the still lingering numbness - found only the bracket that it should have
been mounted in.
Jack nearly had to claw the
smoldering panel up with his hands, reaching in he was able to wrap gloved
fingers over the short before the increase in oxygen caused the smoke to
flare to open flame and smothered it. He sighed with relief. This ride was
way beyond an E ticket.
No sooner had that problem
been solved than his whole body was violently slammed down into his seat,
almost stunning him.
'Splashdown. Now that's a first for me.' He grinned.
The rebound of the capsule
bobbing up from the water slammed him upwards into his straps. He just
knew that he was gonna have some great bruises as reminders of this latest
There was a half a dozen
nearly as brain-jarring lurches from one side to another, coming from no
set direction as sea and buoyant foreign object sought their
reconciliation. Jack was just along for the ride. He was immediately
reminded that this was why he was Air Force; he turned green as the swell
of the ocean transmitted itself through the singed hull that enclosed
Fumbling with the straps
that held him in place he managed to coat his boots with the contents of
his stomach rather than his lap. Thank God for small favors. He knew he
shouldn't have had that cake.
Free of his bonds and his
oh so sweet confection, Jack knew that seeing the horizon was - at the
moment - the most important goal he had. Gingerly, so as to not slip in
the steaming slime he'd just created, he stood to un-dog the hatch, one
shoulder planted against the low ceiling of the cabin against its
That was when he discovered that his neck hurt like the dickens.
'Oh, for crying out loud, is there
such a thing as 'splashdown whiplash?' ' he thought as he rubbed it with
one hand before he attacked the hatch again.
With the heavy fasteners
removed all he had to do was fire the explosive bolts. Even though they
were small and vented entirely to the other side of the hatch, Jack
pressed himself to one side as far as possible before slamming his hand
down on the large button. Thankfully, that too hadn't fallen victim to the
drastic weight-reduction program. His hand hit the edge of the inner hull
instead and he yelped. Dang, it felt like he'd broken a finger with that
clumsy move. Cursing the ocean, the hatch and the designers of said hatch,
he tried and succeeded the second time.
The hatch wrang-ed out a
half an inch in a roar, then with an ear-splitting not-quite-metallic
screech it disappeared entirely. So fast that Jack couldn't tell what
direction it had gone.
The smell of the sea
invaded the acrid air of the X-302's capsule and ignited Jack's stomach
into another spasm. His head just clearing the edge of the opening he
christened his odd boat with strings of phlegmy discharge that the wind
immediately blew back into his face. This was so not his day.
Spitting and scrubbing at
his face with his hands he lunged upwards into the salt spray to the
sounds of approaching jets and the low whump-whump of helicopters. Both
arms sprang upwards to block the spray, the too bright sun and
incidentally to help improve his unsteady balance.
He felt pathetic, but at
this stage he didn't give a damn. Jack counted himself lucky that this
little mission had been as smooth as glass - sort of. He could have been
killed if anything had really gone wrong - like landing anywhere other
than the ocean.
Please someone, just pick
him up and put him in a nice steady aircraft.
Unsteadily he waved his sliver-clad arms most enthusiastically.
The helicopter slowly
lowered itself over him and what was left of the X-302, legs dangled from
the open hatch of the sleek airship, another figure couched behind the
orange clad man sat there. Jack watched as at a slap from the second man
the first slipped out feet first to plunge into the heaving waves.
This was the swimmer part
of the rescue team - his ticket to freedom. These men risked their lives
plucking hapless flyboys like him from the ocean. In just moments the
swimmer jutted up out of the gunmetal colored water to salute the
helicopter. Jack saw the rescue basket already occupied the open hatch
above him, and as he watched it slipped free into space buoyed up by a
"Sir, I'm here to help you."
He'd been so occupied
watching what was happening above that he missed the approach of the
swimmer entirely and flinched in reaction to a voice so close in the
crashing of waves against the capsule.
Jack shook himself. He was
getting way too old for this and needed to pay better attention.
"Just tell me what you want
me to do."
"Are you injured, sir?"
Jack shook his head. "No,
just a bit shook up is all. Other than that I'm fine."
"I'm not surprised, sir.
Whumping into the ocean like you did has a tendency to do that," the
swimmer chuckled while he treaded water.
"Ya think?" Jack smiled. He
liked this guy. What's more, he felt he could trust him with his life,
which was a very good thing because that was exactly what he was about to
In short order Jack was in
the ocean, passively allowing the swimmer to tow him to the rescue basket
floating on its two large orange floats not far from them. The moment he
slipped into the water, seawater seeped through his silver pressure G-suit
and chilled him to the bone. He distracted himself by watching the
hovering helicopter and the man in the black scuba suit.
As the waves swirled around
him, whipped into frothy tips by the hovering helicopter, he inadvertently
got a mouthful of salt water. He spat it out, and then winced as the sores
in his mouth burned from the salt.
As they both swooped up and
down in the swells he could glimpse the larger helicopter that stood
station well out of the way, it was here to recover the command capsule,
couldn't have that fall into anyone's hands - like the Russians. Jack
inwardly snickered at the thought; the very idea that his life-long
enemies had blue prints, but still might want the hardware too. Would
wonders never cease?
Jack followed the kid's
instructions and let him do all the work of getting him into the basket.
At a raised fist from his savior he and the basket sluggishly popped from
the waves and into the air. He had to shut his eyes from the vertigo
induced as the cage twirled in a couple of swift circles in one direction
and then another.
When it banged into
something his eyes shot open - before him was the helicopter. Appearing
like a huge hummingbird in a stiff blow, it made his stomach clench.
Normally this wouldn't bother him but that damned ocean had started
something that only a good solid stay on land could cure.
He and the rescue basket
were carefully and swiftly pulled inside the open hatch of the copter.
Jack found himself propped against the far wall cushioned on blankets with
another one wrapped around his shoulders.
The basket was stowed aft
of him and tied down. The swimmer was already there swaying before the
hatch as his teammate hauled him inside. Jack wasn't paying any attention
to the corpsman who tried and failed to get his attention.
"I'm okay," Jack shouted to be heard above the prop noise.
"Positive," Jack answered
firmly but shivered despite the warm blanket. "I could use some dry
"We'll get you something to
change into once we've landed," assured the corpsman.
He caught the attention of
the swimmer and leaned forward to push out his hand. Immediately it was
grasped by the smiling young man and shaken firmly.
"Just doing my job, sir."
"Thanks, just the same."
The flight lasted only
minutes, not enough time for Jack to get acquainted with the swimmer,
whose name was Ben. He never got the rest of their names, but he did have
their smiles and the feel of a job well done that each and every one of
The pilot put the
whumping-bird down like it had never left, so light was his touchdown.
Jack wasn't too happy about being helped from the craft, but tolerated it.
But when that gurney arrived he put his foot down. It squished seawater
when he did, but he put it down nonetheless. A mule had nothing on him.
The medic ended up pushing
the gurney back with him and acted as his escort as Jack limped and
squished across the deck toward the indicated hatch. Behind him the helo
and its crew slowly disappeared straight down as the deck turned lift
lowered it into the dark sunless storage bays until it was needed
At least the motion of the
ocean wasn't as bad here on the carrier. But his little problem with that
was minor compared to this desire to return to the SGC. Jack hoped he
could get a swift ride back as he wondered just what else was down in the
dark yearning to see the light and feel the freedom of the air under its
wings - as did he.
"We really need to check
you out, sir," the medic objected once they'd stepped through the open
Jack stopped and turned
around, nailing the hapless Navy medic with his full glare, the one he
reserved for times like this. "Does the word no mean nothing to you? I'm
fine - wet but fine."
"My orders state you're to
have a full exam," the medic paused and then added, "sir."
"Doesn't it say colonel on
my uniform?" He fingered the sodden collar of his soggy pressure suit and
"No, sir, it doesn't."
"Well it should."
"No exam, I'm fine."
"Then why are you limping?"
"That's an old injury and
if I told you how I got it, I'd have to shoot ya."
The medic's eyes widened and Jack sighed.
"That was a joke." Jack
paused and shivered. "Look, if you must do something, get me some dry
clothes. I feel like I soaked up half the danged ocean."
He flinched as a cold trickle of water seeped under his collar and ran
down his back. The flinch turned into a spasm of pain
that ripped along his spine and up to the top of his head. His hand
automatically rose to massage the back of his neck, but when Jack realized
his actions had caught the attention of the medic, he switched targets and
swept his long fingers through his short hair with irritation, leaving
behind tufts that stuck up at odd angles.
"Is there a problem here?"
Jack sighed. "No, there
isn't. This corpsman was just getting me some dry clothes," He turned to
the corpsman and nailed him with a glare. "Weren't you?"
The corpsman frowned and
addressed his words to the Navy officer who stood behind Jack. "Sir, I was
attempting to escort Colonel O'Neill to sick bay but he has refused."
"Colonel Jack O'Neill? I'm
Lieutenant Commander Sam Thompson, the Enterprise's XO. My boss sent me to
bring you to his cabin. He'd like to meet the jet jockey that's so
important that his ship was diverted to scoop him up out of the drink."
Jack smiled. "Glad to meet
you, Thompson, but if it's all the same to you, I'd rather skip all the
chitchat and fly back home. I've got a heck of a debrief waiting for me,
and the sooner I get there, the sooner I can get some downtime."
"Shucks, sir. Are you gonna
turn down the Navy's hospitality?" The office drawled. "Where I come from
it's not polite to turn down an invite from the boss."
"And where would that be?"
Jack couldn't help it, he was cold, tired, and just wanted to go home -
certainly in no mood to make nice with the squids from the Navy.
"Galveston, in the great state of Texas."
Jack grimaced, "I should have known. You wouldn't know my CO, would
you? You sound just like him."
When Thompson opened his
mouth, Jack waved his hand. "No, don't answer that, I'd have to shoot ya
too if I told you his name, and I hate the paperwork when that
"Then you might as well
come with me, Colonel. My boss doesn't like to be kept waiting."
"So... no Tomcat?"
The XO shook his head. "No
Tomcat. Your ride will be here in about an hour. Just enough time to pay
my boss a visit and change into something dry."
"For crying out loud, the
things I do..." Jack muttered under his breath but followed the Navy
officer. At this point, he could do little else, or risk being shipped
back to the SGC in irons, which would not sit well with Hammond - even if
he had saved his planet... again.
Thompson turned to the
medic, "You're dismissed, corpsman. I'll take it from here."
"Yes, sir. Thank you, sir."
"Yes, thanks but no thanks," Jack muttered and ignored the look of
disapproval he received from the medic.
"Tell me, Colonel. Are you
always this good-natured? Or is this a special gift of yours?"
"What?" Jack feigned a look of confused innocence. "Oh, that?"
"Let's just say that I get
cranky when I'm tired and leave it at that."
"Whatever you say, sir."
The Navy officer looked like he didn't believe his excuse and continued.
"If you'll come with me? You can change into a poop suit before you meet
the Skipper. He doesn't like it when people drip all over his deck."
Jack stopped in his tracks. "A what?"
"A poop suit," the XO
turned and smirked. "What you flyboys call a flight suit."
Jack rolled his eyes. "It
figures." He shook his head and muttered to himself. "And this is the
thanks I get..."
"Did you say something,
Colonel?" The XO looked far too innocent for Jack's taste, but he refused
to rise to the bait.
"Naw, just squishing along."
The colonel pasted a smile
on his face and waved his hand. "So this is the Enterprise? And the
captain would be James T. Kirk?" he smirked.
"No, he would not. And if
you know what's good for you, you won't say that to the captain. You have
no idea how many times we've heard that particular line."
Jack smiled and tried to
like it, really he did. But his bum knee hurt, his neck hurt, his mouth
felt like he's chewed a hole in the side of it, and his stomach still
wouldn't quiet down. Not to mention the headache that was getting worse by
the second. At least the aircraft carrier was large enough that the effect
of the ocean waves was negated... mostly. Other than that, he was fine...
just fine. Or would be once he was back safely back on dry land.
"You can change in here,
and then I'll escort you to see the skipper," the XO indicated an open
door that led into a small compartment. Jack stepped inside and looked
around. When he saw the flight suit laid out on the bunk, he raised an
"Your poops suit awaits,"
the XO clearly thought he was being hilarious.
"Of course it does," Jack
grimaced. "Don't quit your day job," he muttered to himself. Who was that
guy trying to kid? 'Don't try to
teach this old dog to suck eggs, squid. I can out-do your pithy attempt
and acting the innocent bit without half trying.'
Although the bunk behind
him looked very inviting, he ignored it and concentrated on peeling off
the silvery pressure suit that seemed to have adhered most unpleasantly to
Stepping out of it, one leg
at a time, he braced one arm against the wall to keep his balance. Once
the garment released its grip on his ankles, he flung it into a corner and
picked up the dry clothing. His attention was drawn to his mottled chest.
Looking more closely, he noted his chest and legs had a light coating of
white that itched like crazy but flaked off and drifted to the floor when
he scrubbed at it.
Even he had to admit that
he looked like hell and was glad he had turned down the corpsman's
invitation to be examined. From the looks of the bruises that covered his
chest and shoulders, not to mention how the muscles in his back corded and
rippled every time he moved, he'd had one bumpy ride.
Jack leaned closer to the
mirror in front of him and noted the bruising followed the exact outlines
of his harness from the X-302. Yep, it had been one bumpy ride all right.
And he would have a time keeping out of Doc's hands once he made it back
to the SGC. While he had been able to bull his way out of a medical exam
on the Enterprise, Fraiser knew him - and his tricks - and would not be so
easily fooled. Crap.
But at least he felt warmer
once he'd stepped into the dry flight suit and zipped it up. It did
wonders for his sour mood and he felt ready to face almost anything as he
stepped into the corridor - even a captain from Texas.
Authors: DinkyJo; [a synthesis of Dinkydow and JoleneB]
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; and/or email@example.com
Category: Missing Scene, drama
Content Level: 18+
Season: Season 6
Spoilers: Redemption, Parts 1 and 2
Warnings: Wet Jack ahead, but nothing explicit.
Summary: That splashdown wasn't as simple as it looked.
Disclaimer: Nope, still don't own any of them. Couldn't afford
to if I did and don't have a mountain to hide them in. Showtime/Viacom,
MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, Gekko Productions do. I wrote this for
entertainment and won't be making any money for it, so please don't sue.
But, if you guys want any help with scripts, or Jack, just give me a
Author's Notes - Dinkydow: I couldn't help but wonder what was
going on inside the command module after Jack ejected from the X302.
Here's our take on it. My thanks to my hubby who used the "chicken
plate" - mostly successfully - in Vietnam. I'd also like to thank my
friend, Linda, for her expertise in "Navy-speak."
Author's Notes - JoleneB: Dinky's idea was very interesting cause
it appears no one has taken advantage of this rather large time gap so
full of possibilities. Just hope we filled it with the proper mixture
of action and whump; but I'm sure you'll let us know. EG