What Remains by Rudesmom
Summary: Decades later the Tok'ra return to Earth. WIP
Categories: Jack/Sam Characters: Daniel Jackson, Other Characters, Samantha Carter
Episode Related: 0818 Threads
Genres: Alternate Universe, Angst, Future Story
Holiday: None
Season: Future Season
Warnings: character death, rape/non consensual sex
Crossovers: None
Challenges:
Series: None
Chapters: 4 Completed: No Word count: 5774 Read: 10463 Published: 2007.08.05 Updated: 2007.08.18
Story Notes:

Disclaimer: I don't own Stargate or any of its related properties. If I did, Jack would be retired and be married to Sam.

Having admitted to being a shipper, I'm not sure this story really qualifies as Jack/Sam. This a story about broken people and opportunities lost. It may have a semi-happy ending but don't count on it.

1. Chapter 1 by Rudesmom

2. Chapter 2 by Rudesmom

3. Chapter 3 by Rudesmom

4. Chapter 4 by Rudesmom

Chapter 1 by Rudesmom

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Garshaw of Belote

It had been nearly a half-century since the last time she visited Earth. Her host had been uncomfortable with the idea but eventually had agreed that it was time.

The Tok'ra alliance with Earth had been an uneasy one at best. Neither side truly trusting the other. She couldn't find it within herself to blame them anymore. The Tok'ra had been fixated on the destruction of the System Lords for millenia. Nothing else had mattered. Everything was dedicated to the Cause. The Tau'ri lacked that level of commitment, or so the Tok'ra thought. In the early years, Jacob/Selmac had been able to smooth over many things. His relationship with SG-1 and Stargate Command had provided the foundation for the alliance. His death had proved that the foundation was built on sand.

The alliance began crumbling almost immediately. The High Council decided that Anise/Freya would replace Jacob/Selmac as liaison. SG-1 and General O'Neill couldn't stand them, especially Anise. If Garshaw had known all of the details surrounding Anise's experiments the armbands, she would have demanded that the Council chose another Tok'ra. She found out much too late and the mistrust had deepened.

The final blow to the alliance was the loss of SG-1. Acting on information provided by the Tok'ra, they had walked straight into a trap. Only Daniel Jackson had made to back to the SGC, more dead than alive. By the time the Council realized the enormity of their error and Garshaw went so far as to lead a rescue mission herself, it was too late.

The Tau'ri placed their hopes on their alliance with the Jaffa rebellion despite the lost of Teal'c. It had been a wise choice. The Jaffa provided a fifth column, valuable intelligence, and numbers. The Tau'ri provided coordination, supplies, and strike teams. The Tau'ri also worked to open diplomatic relations with other worlds, something that the Jaffa, and the Tok'ra, usually had great difficulty with. The Tau'ri continued to benefit from their relationship with the Asgard, bringing advanced technology to the fight.

The Tok'ra were relegated to minor players in the war that they had begun so long ago. From time to time, the Tok'ra provided assistance to the Tau'ri or Jaffa, trying to rebuild what had been lost. The war had ended before the old wounds healed.

Now, as she waited for the finally chevrons to be encoded, she wondered what she would find on the other side.

Jack O'Neill

He really, really, didn't want to be here. Damn brass insisted. Oh, wait, he was one of the damned brass. Major General Jack O'Neill, Jr., at your service. Although in this case, maybe it should be at your disservice.

He would have retired if he thought it would get him out of this. But no, the remaining brass would have dragged his sorry ass back for this historic occasion anyway. Just like they dragged back everyone else they could track down from the original SGC. Despite advances in medicine over that last half century, there weren't that many left though. Hell, he wasn't even a member of the original SGC. That had been the other Jack O'Neill. He was just the clone for crying out loud. Why did he have to be there?

There had been many things that he had missed while waiting to rejoin the SGC— commissary jello, Carter's technobabble, Carter... The Tok'ra, apart from Jacob, he did not miss. If they were sending Anise, he'd shoot her, consequences be damned. She had been the source of the intel that cost them SG-1.

Neither O'Neill recovered from the loss. They both went through the motions, continuing on with their lives. According to Cassie, the wedding to Kerry went off right on schedule. Jack still couldn't understand why O'Neill had been engaged to her in the first place. They had been in love with Carter. Yes, the regulations stood in the way for one and a massive age difference for the other but still... O'Neill's second marriage had ended in divorce within a year and he ended his days in Minnesota, fishing in a pond without fish. Jack didn't make the same mistake. Oh, he had relationships over the years but he didn't kid himself. He had loved two women in his life, Sara and Carter, and even though they were both gone now, he wasn't going to settle for second best.

He looked up from his desk as his aide entered the office.

“I guess we'd better head to the gateroom.”

Sam Carter

She still didn't think it was a good idea but Garshaw and the Council were adamant. It was time. But for her, there were too many bad memories associated with their destination. Twenty-eight stories beneath a mountain, the SGC only represented pain and loss. It had become crypt for all of her hopes and dreams. She had lost too many over the years. Martouf, Narim, Janet, her father, Daniel, Teal'c, and O'Neill. Funny how the only one who didn't actually die on her was the one that still hurt the most.

She had made a terrible mistake turning to Pete all those years ago. She knew it and broken it off within a few months but it was too late. Jack had found somebody else. She thought she had died and gone to hell it hurt so much.

Then came the mission from hell. Despite assurances from Anise, the Ancient ruins were not deserted. The team had been separated when they had fallen under heavy fire. Her 2iC was killed immediately and she was mortally wounded. Teal'c and Daniel were trying to make it back to the gate when they were strafed by a death glider. The Goa'uld who had set up the ambush used a sarcophagus to revive her. She spent the next year in his not so tender care before Garshaw rescued her.

She declined to return to the SGC and joined the Tok'ra. With her team dead, there wasn't anybody other than Cassie to return to. She became a host a few years later. Now, decades later, she was returning to where it all began. She wondered if anyone would recognize Garshaw's host as the late Lt. Colonel Samantha Carter.

She stepped through the stargate.
Chapter 2 by Rudesmom
Jennifer Haley

She had spent most of her military career in the mountain. With the loss of Lt. Colonel Carter, she had quickly become the leading expert on the Stargate. Her only serious competition, the incredibly annoying Rodney McKay, had been on the Atlantis team. Her rise through the ranks had been slower than she would have liked but she wouldn't have traded her posting for anything. It had been the job of a lifetime. It still was. After her retirement two years earlier as a full colonel, she had signed on as a civilian consultant.

She looked around at the other old-timers gathered in the gateroom for today's “festivities.” Damn, she hated the Pentagon PR department for bringing a film crew to this event. Have some coffee, go to makeup, spill your guts in front of the camera please. The important stuff was still classified so their questions were inane at best. The science portion didn't make for good sound bites and the rest? How do you describe over four decades of war? How do you describe over four decades of war in family-friendly way? The loss of countless colleagues and friends?

She, like her late mentor, never married. She had watched her fellow officers struggle with trying to balance family life with the secret war being waged from the mountain. Even the first General O'Neill had failed to make it work, despite his wife having clearance. This was a posting for the single, the widowed, the divorced. The mountain claimed too many lives for it to be otherwise.

She didn't see Jack yet which wasn't much of a surprise. This had to be even more painful for him than for her. She had made friends with the younger O'Neill when he arrived to the SGC as a newly minted lieutenant. He had cut his ties to his former teammates when he decided to return to high school as keeping contact would have just been “too weird.” The elder Jack never told him about SG-1. No one had. He had shown up at the mountain expecting to see his old team. She was the one that had to tell him. He still hadn't forgiven the Tok'ra, or the other Jack. Now he was under orders to make nice and smile for the cameras. Oh yeah, he was probably still hiding in his office.

JD

As he followed Anise through the stargate, he felt a sense of trepidation. He had petitioned the High Council for permission to accompany Garshaw and was somewhat surprised when they agreed. This was the first direct contact with his mother's homeworld in many years and he was, after all, a mere infant by their standards.

He had been an infant by just about everyone's standards when the final breakdown of the Tok'ra alliance with Earth occurred. Direct contact had been cut off shortly after the loss of SG-1. Since then, the Tok'ra had managed to feed critical information to the SGC through various third parties. Earth had wanted no part of the Tok'ra at the time and his mother and aunt had been instrumental in setting up a series of fronts to obscure the source of the information. The tensions had eased over time but the mistrust remained.

He didn't know much about Earth. The sadness that shadowed his mother only became deeper when she spoke of Earth so he learned at an early age that it was a topic best left alone. “Aunt” Anise and her host had been more forthcoming although their knowledge of the Tau'ri homeworld was fairly limited. They were to able to tell him about the men whose names he bore. As he grew older, he realized that Anise had been more than fond of one of them. He knew his mother was unhappy with the council's decision to send Garshaw to Earth. That was why, beyond curiosity, he had to come.

Daniel Jackson

He still didn't believe he had agreed to come back. He still didn't believe that the Pentagon had bothered to find him. After the loss of rest of his team, he left the SGC. Not immediately, but soon after. He had been badly wounded and knew he would never go through the gate again. After more than a year of physical therapy, he could walk after a fashion but he would never regain his old mobility. He had accepted that, just as he had accepted the loss of his teammates. What he couldn't accept, and what finally made him leave the SGC, was Jack's behavior afterwards.

The SG-1 had been friends for years. They had gone through bad patches but at the end of the day, Daniel had always thought that they were friends, family even. It was after his promotion to general that Jack began to distance himself from them. Sam said it was the military way. Maybe it was, but after that last mission, Jack acted as though he barely remembered, or ever cared about, his old team. Daniel thought that they could work through it. He had been wrong.

In the weeks preceding that final, ill-fated mission, something had been wrong at the SGC. There was nothing he could put a finger on at the time. Strange silences when SG-1 entered a room, the odd look in the hallway. Sam had become increasingly tense. At the time, he thought it was due to her father's death and her breakup with the cop. During the early days of his recovery, before being moved from the SGC infirmary to a nursing home for physical therapy, he found out that there were rumors making the rounds about Sam and how she came by her promotions. Talk that she wasn't fit to command SG-1 and was going to be transferred out of the SGC altogether. Nothing blatant, just a hint here, a look there. There had been enough new personnel, as well as a few jealous colleagues, that the gossip found fertile ground. Even with Sam dead, the talk didn't stop. It was as if someone wanted to make sure her reputation was dead as well.

He tried to talk to Jack about what was happening. Jack shut him out. Daniel resigned from the SGC before completing PT. The Pentagon, loathe to lose their favorite archaeologist, convinced him to work at Area 51. He spent a few years there before finding a teaching position at a small college on the east coast. While he kept in contact with some of his old friends at the SGC, he never saw or spoke to Jack again.

Now he was back and once again there was a Jack O'Neill in charge of the SGC if his escort was to be believed. He shouldn't have been surprised. He had known the clone was destined for the Academy with an eye to getting him back into the SGC. He hoped this one wasn't the complete ass that the other had become.

Bringing his mind back to the present, he watched the iris open and the first of the Tok'ra delegation arrive. Lovely, they sent Anise. He didn't recognize the second figure through the gate. The third and final figure was quite a shock. The hair was too dark but he would have recognized that face anywhere. He just never expected to see it again. After all, Sam Carter was supposed to be dead.
Chapter 3 by Rudesmom
Daniel watched as the last of the Tok'ra hesitated for a moment on the ramp. He might be old but he wasn't senile. The third Tok'ra, that was Sam. What the hell had happened on P5X-719?

Sam heard the gate shut down behind her and looked around the gateroom. It hadn't changed much. The actual gateroom that is. Security, on the other hand, was certainly lax these days. The System Lords might be defeated but there were there were too many non-essential personnel in the gateroom. What kind of idiot would allow it? If the team of SFs on hand needed to open fire they were going to have a problem with friendly fire. Somehow, she didn't think that the gray heads in the crowd would be able to get down fast enough. And what was it with all the number of old...

Holy Hannah! Was that elderly man Paul Davis? Her eyes swept over the crowd. She thought she saw Haley and the tall man with a stoop in the back row, could that be Siler?

/Garshaw, please take over. I can't do this./

/Sam/

/That's Paul Davis. They must have brought him out of retirement. I think that they brought a lot of people back. I can't do this. Not yet./

Sam dipped her head as Garshaw took control.

JD turned back when he failed to hear his mother follow him down the ramp. Her body language was wrong. He moved back up the ramp and quietly asked, “Garshaw?”

“Yes. It seems as if the Tau'ri have arranged for a reunion of the original SGC. Sam was not expecting it.”

“Is she alright?”

“She will be. She's stronger than she knows.”

“Do you think that they will recognize her?”

“She has changed much since I first met her. And, in truth, they have thought her dead for nearly forty of their years.”

JD smiled slightly. Maybe that was part of the problem between the Tok'ra and the Tau'ri. Never give a direct answer when indirect would suffice. He offered his arm to Garshaw and escorted her down the ramp and to a small stage to his right.

Daniel watched the interplay between the two with interest. Her hair was longer, darker, and her face was noticeably thinner, but it was Sam. The other Tok'ra seemed vaguely familiar but he couldn't place him. There was definitely something between the pair, or at least between their symbiotes. Was he the reason Sam let everyone believe she was dead? Had the Tok'ra prevented her from contacting the SGC? Had it been her choice? His speculation continued as the pair approached him on their way to the ceremonial stage.

There was a small disturbance at the back of the crowd as General O'Neill entered the gateroom with his aide following close behind. The general's progress came an abrupt halt as he recognized Anise climbing the steps to the stage.

“God damn snakes. They just had to send her didn't they?”

“Sir?” His worried aide nearly collided with him.

“Don't worry Mitchell. I'll behave,” O'Neill growled. “Let's just get this over with before I'm overcome with the desire to shoot to kill. I'd hate to upset the PR flaks. And what the hell were they thinking to put this many people in the gateroom anyway?”

“Hoping to cut the pension rolls if anything went wrong, Sir?”

“Let's hope the SFs know to shoot the reporters first.”

O'Neill worked his way through the crowd and failed to get a good look at the other two Tok'ra. The Tok'ra came to an abrupt stop just before the steps. The female Tok'ra reached out a hand to an elderly man on crutches.

As Garshaw and JD walked towards the stage, Sam watched from the background. She thought she recognized a couple of scientists from the SGC and then Garshaw's eyes fell on the face of man they both thought long dead.

/Garshaw? Please, let me out./

Garshaw came to a halt and allowed Sam to resume control.

“Daniel?” She whispered, tears beginning to pool in her eyes. Her hand brushed his face.

“Sam?”

“Oh God, Daniel. I was told you were dead, that you were all killed.”

“Teal'c and Trainor were. I survived.” He used his head to indicate his crutches. “Barely. And you? Jack said you were killed.”

“I'm sure he did. We need to talk, but not here.”

Daniel had agree to the wisdom of that and so did the other Tok'ra if his nod was any indication. Several people near them were watching with undisguised curiosity. Fortunately, not one of them appeared to recognize her but it was unlikely that that would continue. He had spoken with Siler and Davis earlier that day. Those two, at least, should be able to figure out who she was. General O'Neill might recognize her, but then again, considering how the original had apparently forgotten her existence, maybe not.

“Later then.”

Sam smiled her first real smile in years. A misty eyed Daniel returned it.

Garshaw retook control and she and her escort continued towards the stage. They climbed the short staircase and turned to face the crowd.

General O'Neill reached the first step. All he needed to do was make a quick speech. He walked across the stage. He was already planning to follow it with a hasty retreat. He pulled out his notes. There was no way he was going to spend one more second than absolutely necessary in Anise's company. Maybe he would get lucky and the Asgard would beam him out and he wouldn't have to even give his speech. He didn't look at the Tok'ra, in fact, he avoided it.

The Tok'ra, however, did look at the general. They had been told that following the conclusion of the war, a civilian had been given command of the SGC. None of them expected to see O'Neill. Anise and Garshaw were stunned at his youthful appearance, he had to be nearly ninety yet looked much as he had some forty years earlier. A cold rage filled Sam, nearly overcoming Garshaw. It took several moments before she remembered that it couldn't be Jack. The clone, it had to be the clone. Her fury subsided to a low burn but with Garshaw in control, no one was any the wiser.

O'Neill's speech was brief, much to the disappointment of the PR department. As he stepped away from the podium, Garshaw stepped up to it. She introduced herself and congratulated them on their victory over their mutual enemy. At the sound of an oddly familiar voice, O'Neill turned to look at Garshaw.
Chapter 4 by Rudesmom
O'Neill stared at Garshaw's host. It couldn't be Sam. Sam was dead. Sam was alive. Sam was a host. He didn't know if he was glad that she was alive. Garshaw finished her speech and stepped back from the microphone, but he hadn't heard a word of it. As the shock wore off, his anger began to mount. The Tok'ra had made her a god-damned host. He pulled himself together and moved back towards the podium for the question and answer period that followed.

The general managed to hold on to his temper and behave in a somewhat civilized fashion while fielding questions from the reporters. Garshaw also answered a few questions. Then, one reporter asked the indelicate question that had been in O'Neill's mind for the last half hour.

“What is the difference between the Goa'uld and the Tok'ra?”

Not much, Jack thought.

“The Goa'uld take hosts by force, the Tok'ra do not. Ours is a voluntary blending. The host gains the knowledge of the symbiote and an increased lifespan in return for sharing their body.”

“Can I ask your host a question?”

/Sam/

/I'll do it./

Sam's head dropped as she took over control.

“What is your question?”

“Why did you chose to become a host?”

“Garshaw and Yosuuf, her previous host, had been friends of my family for years. When Yosuuf was fatally injured, I volunteered to serve as Garshaw's host.”

“And how does your family feel about it?”

Sam looked at Daniel as she answered. “I lost most of my family in a Goa'uld attack several years before I blended with Garshaw. However, my father had been a host so I think he would have approved.”

O'Neill followed Sam's gaze stopping as they reached an old man with bright blue eyes. A remnant of Jack's memory surfaced. Daniel, I hardly recognized you with hair. He still had hair, but it was a far cry from what he had sported during his first trip through the gate. Had Daniel known that Sam was alive? Had Jack? He forced himself to listen as a follow up question was asked.

“We've been introduced to Garshaw but not to you. That hardly sounds like an equal relationship. What is your name?”

“You have forgotten that our companions not were introduced either. Garshaw is a member of the High Council of the Tok'ra. In diplomatic matters, she is in charge. If this were a scientific conference, either Anise/Freya or myself would have been introduced.”

/Sam.../

/Well it's the truth./

/Part of it. You're sounding more and more like a Tok'ra./

/After all this time, it would be a surprise if I didn't. Besides, it would hardly be diplomatic for me to say that I am under orders to be here. Sounds too much like the Goa'uld./

O'Neill didn't want to hear how Sam would identify herself. He used the pause to end the question and answer period. After thanking the distinguished guests, he tried to escort Sam off the podium only to be intercepted by the male Tok'ra.

“General O'Neill, may I ask you a question?”

O'Neill watched in frustration as Sam left the podium and walked over to Daniel. “Can it wait?”

“Of course.”

The Tok'ra stepped aside to allow him to pass but it was too late, Sam had reached Daniel and disappeared into the crowd. O'Neill scowled and went to look for the pair.

“Anise, wasn't Mother's commanding officer named O'Neill?”

“Yes. He looks like the same O'Neill but it can't be. He is much too young.”

“His son perhaps?”

“General O'Neill was betrothed when your mother was captured. This could be his son although he appears not to have aged as well as his father.”

“The Tau'ri have an alliance with Asgard. Maybe they cloned him.”

“Thor was fond of O'Neill. You may be correct. For now, I think we should find your mother.”


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After a quick consultation with one the day's coordinators, Sam and Daniel found themselves alone in a small office. After sitting down, Daniel leaned his crutches against the desk. Sam pulled up a second chair.
“I saw you die. What happened?”

“A sarcophagus, what else?” Sam replied. “I was revived and held prisoner. The Tok'ra eventually found out and mounted a rescue operation.”

“They didn't contact the SGC?”

“They contacted the SGC with evidence that I was being held prisoner.” Sam said bitterly. “General O'Neill's response was that Lt. Colonel Samantha Carter, along with the rest of SG-1, had been killed in action thanks to the Tok'ra.”

“Wait a sec, the rest of SG-1?”

“You do look rather good for someone who supposedly died forty years ago.”

“Although not as good as you.” Daniel replied. “So the Tok'ra rescued you. Isn't that a bit, um, out of character for them?”

“It was, but Garshaw had a soft spot of my father and Selmac. She wasn't, isn't, as cold blooded as some on the High Council.”

“But why didn't you come home?”

“To what Daniel? My team was dead. The SGC had declared me dead so I didn't even have Mark and his family to return to.” Sam stared at Daniel. “You know how bad things had gotten here. My career was pretty much shot to hell before the mission.”

“I know you Sam. You would have come back despite that. Was it because of Jack and Kerry?”

“My decision had nothing to do with that. It hurt to see them together but I stayed offworld because it was safer.” Sam looked straight into Daniel's eyes. “My team was gone, I didn't have anyone on this planet that I could trust to watch my six.”

“And you didn't trust Jack.” It was a statement, not a question.

“How could I? I tried to talk to him about what was happening in the weeks leading up to the mission. He refused to listen. He left me behind enemy lines after receiving information that I was still alive. Jack,” she spat, “knew which Goa'uld was holding me prisoner. It was Ba'al, Daniel. Jack knew and he still let me rot.”

“No, he wouldn't have,” Daniel was horrified.

“I share Garshaw's memories. She told him. He didn't give a damn.”

“There's got to be something else. You said it was safer offworld. How? I mean, there was a war going on. There wasn't a System Lord out there that wouldn't have wanted to get their hands on a member of SG-1.”

“When I was rescued, I was pregnant. There was no way in hell I was going to allow my child to fall into the hands of the NID or the Trust. My team was gone and I sure as hell wasn't going to trust my CO.”

“Why would they want your child?”

“Because there was a possibility that he would be harsesis.”

“His father,” Daniel's voice trailed off as he realized why the third Tok'ra looked familiar.

Sam completed his sentence, “was Ba'al.”
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