The Incidences of The Blippy Dohickey 16: Sometimes You Can Tell, And Show.

"Sir," one of the Marines said, walking into John's office.  John looked up at him, his pen being put down.  "Can I have a quiet administrative talk with you?"

"Sure."  John closed the doors.  "What's up?"  He leaned back.

"I know the spore thing created some strange...relationships for lack of a better word."  John nodded at that.  "The same as I know that Don't Ask, Don't Tell is in force for us.  But, some people do tell.  Or it's very obvious.  Some of the guys aren't real comfortable with that."

"Which one?"


"Harris isn't under DADT."

"Why not?"

"He's not military.  He's a civilian contractor."

"So are the scientists and they're not that flaming."

"A few are," he admitted.  "But Harris isn't like them either.  See, Harris... he ran into things that he shouldn't have."

"Oh, shit, they conscripted," he said, sitting down.

"Yeah, basically.  It was here or UNIT."

"Eww.  I'm sorry for the kid."

"Also, the kid, spent a hell of a lot of time traveling."

"We guessed at that part.  Especially with who brought him back to heal him after that one battle," he admitted.

"Xander informed General O'Neill when he went to sign him up that he was very bi, wasn't going to hide it, and will only hit on those he knows are appreciative or who need the torment to loosen up."

"Which we don't all mind, but today, he's been glowing and bouncy, and well...kinda disturbing.  A lot of guys are spreading rumors about who he was spored with."

"I don't want any talk about anyone on that matter."

"Some guys were comparing and they think that maybe...  Let's just say some guys are staring at Major Lorne a bit funny today, sir."

"Got names?"

"I'd hate to be beaten," he offered.  "I like Major Lorne, but it was clear what he got wasn't normal."

"Corporal, whoever he wants to sleep with, he's allowed.  If they're military, I'm not going to ask.  I don't want them to tell me.  I don't care who anyone on this project sleeps with as long as they're consenting adults or species."

"Okay," he said quietly.  "So those of us who're uncomfortable?"

"Most of us who're tolerant or who have gay friends, have long ago decided that that's your point of view and you're entitled to it.  But if you make someone miserable or cause problems then they're going to go diva on you.  Before you ask, yes I do know a number of gay pilots in the Air Force."

"Oh."  He considered that.  "So we should basically quit speculating?"

"I'd do that, yes."

"And the fact that Doctor Zelenka came down from the aerie this morning?"

"He and Xander were playing video games.  He, Evan Lorne, and Xander all get together to play video games."


"Yeah.  He even bought the hockey game so Jon Tyler-O'Neill could come play on his system."  He smiled.  "While it's speculation, I do not want anyone to go for confirmation."

"Do you think he'd let more of us play them on our downtime?" he asked.

"I think, and I have confirmation from Ellis, that he bought us our own system so no one would have to carry his tv down the stairs ever again."  The corporal grinned at that.  "Though, and I will stress this, I don't want to know if anything more is going on.  If they were spored together then what I said holds true.  I don't care who it was unless it was non-consensual."  He was frantically pushing back the memories he had of his time up there with them.  Before he started to grin in a goofy, got laid manner again.  It tended to freak out some of the Marines.

"I get that, sir."  He cleared his throat.  "Perhaps you should make note that we're a tolerant project?  I know a few are ...worried to put it nicely that they're going to be infected."

John grimaced.  "I can definitely point that out.  I can also point out that there's only twenty women on the base for over a hundred men.  I personally don't care what they get out of the closet, or what they do in their downtime as long as it's not *criminal*."

"That can be."

"No, it won't be.  Because I will not take any DADT complaints.  I don't care.  Woolsey won't take them either.  The same as Weir wouldn't have taken them.  We have enough shit on our plates out here with the wraith and the replicators to deal with people who're homophobes.  You can quote me if you like."

"I can understand that, sir.  So...if someone is?"

"Then as long as they're keeping it subtle and quiet, I'm good with that.  If I see a domestic argument in the mess hall, then we'd have problems.  From any sort of couple."

"Gotcha.  I think it would be a good idea if you made that point clear, sir."  He stood up.  "Personally I don't care if Major Lorne is all but singing and can't sit."

"Corporal, even if what you think happened did, what makes you think he was on the bottom?  I know he can't sit.  He slid down the stairs earlier.  He's got some wonderful bruises and Doctor Keller excused him from sitting duties for the next two days."

"Oh.  I didn't hear that gossip."

"That's fine.  I'll make that noted today."

"Thank you, sir."  He left once the doors opened.

John groaned, rubbing over his face.  He went to talk to Woolsey, who was writing a report.  "On Nila?"

"No.  On the spores in case they hit somewhere else."  John got his own and let him see it.  "General Landry wanted that sort of detail?"

"He said to make a blunt report."

"I guess that's reasonable."  He looked at him.  "Problems?"

"Some of the soldiers are going to complain about the spore happenings and who they ended up with."

He sighed.  "I don't care."

"My feeling was as long as it was consensual and a species that was compatible neither did I.  I wanted to warn you that someone may try to make complaints.  Especially about our video game trio."

Woolsey smiled.  "It's nice to see him bouncy for a good reason.  What happened to Major Lorne today?  He was fine then limping."

"He slid down some stairs."

"Ow.  Poor man."


"Even worse.  I personally don't care."

"Good.  I'm going to make sure that is known and that I don't care as long as it's subtle.  I don't want to see any domestic arguments but I don't care.  It appears we may have gotten a few homophobes in the last trip as well," he said more quietly.

"The military is your job, Colonel.  Make sure you have someone to cover for them if you have to correct them too strongly."

"Thank you."  He smirked.  "I'll do that today during mandatory training time."  He left, going to put that note on everyone's calendar.  Though he had said no PT this week.  So he made it tomorrow.  That was the next week.  And only a few were going to be in practice.  He went to walk the halls and listen to the gossip.  He ran into Evan limping and paused by him.  "You may want to complain more loudly about that injury," he said in his ear.

"I've been complaining since I got out of the infirmary, sir.  I think it's highly unfair I'm the one who slipped and fell on my ass down those stairs with how many have run down them before."   He looked around then at him.  "Why?"

"DADT rumors," he said quietly.


"Yes, they think you are," he admitted.  "I don't care if you are."

"Thank you," he said with a small smile.

"Not a problem.  Don't make him go diva during a fight."

"Gotcha and not an issue."

"Good."  He walked off, hearing the complaining people in the gym.  For once, it wasn't the Marines.  It was the Army guys that had just been transferred in.  They still had to do sparring practice too.  How sweet.  He went to talk to Ronon about that problem.  He could scowl anyone into fleeing for their lives, but Xander.  Then he went to talk to Teyla.  Then Faith because she was the youngest woman on base and the most vulnerable to that sort of issue.  He found her in the weight and equipment gym hanging up the heavy bag and walked her off.  "There's been thoughts by some of the new guys that they have the right to say how things go, no matter who might think that," he told her quietly.  "If you have *any* problems, you do not take shit, you tell me.  Even if you have to kick their ass and then call me.  Got it?" he told her.

"Sure," she agreed.  "I did that earlier and handed him to the nurse for pinching my ass.  That's why I'm putting back up the heavy bag."  She smiled.

"Good.  I want to know anyone who does that but I'll be correcting some assumptions tomorrow.  During sparring, and no you're not immune to that practice time.  At least twice a week, Faith.  Me, Xander, Ronon, Teyla, whoever."

"Got it."

"Good."  He smiled.  "Who?"

"One of the dweeby Rangers."

"I'll go find out.  Let me know.  Make sure the other women know to let me know.  Some of the scientists aren't all that tough bitch like you are."

She nodded.  "I can help there too probably."

He grinned.  "Thanks."  He walked off, going to the infirmary.  "Which dweeby Ranger got it for trying to pinch Faith?"  The nurse handed over the folder.  He read it and smiled.  "Thank you.  We're sparring tomorrow."

"I'll make sure we have more bandages out."

He walked off to find that person.  He was off duty but easily found complaining to the other Rangers.  "Let's talk," he said, walking him off by force.


"Because the women on this base are here to do a job, the same as you are, and they're not here to get a date, or a boyfriend, and sure as hell won't put up with any disrespect.  No one will."  He walked him up to Woolsey's office and shoved him inside then walked in and closed the door.


Xander walked into the gym.  "Yeah, Colonel?"

"It's time for sparring.  Some of these guys still need tested.  You and Cam do them?"

"I can do that," he promised, taking off his shirt to put it aside.  "Sticks or hand-to-hand?"

"You're weaker in hand-to-hand.  If they beat you, send them at Ronon."  Xander nodded and walked his newbies off.  John had specially separated them.   They were about to meet one of the toughest gay men in existence.  Pity about their asses being handed to them.  He worked over his crew.  Ronon made a few of his cry.  So did Teyla.  So did Cam.  Xander was making them sorry for their birth's today.  At least until one of them started to get pissed that he was being beaten by a gay man and shouted that he was cheating because no fag would ever be able to beat him.  Then he pulled a gun.  Cam was closer but Teyla had a knife that she threw to try to disarm him.  Cam tackled him just after the knife hit.  The gun still went off and Xander yelped but held his side.

Xander put pressure on it, not looking pleased.  "Get off him.  If he thinks he can beat me, let him up, Cam.  Now."  Cam knew that tone of voice.  That wasn't Xander.  That was Tias Diamalan, the time traveler.  John almost winced as he walked over.  "No, back," he ordered.  "Him and his little pack, if they think they can beat me, let them.  Clearly their view of their skills is highly overrated."  The man on the floor growled and came at him without his gun.  Xander hit him then spun kicked him into a wall, making him slide down it whimpering at his newly broke jaw.  "Any of the rest of you?" he asked that pack.  They backed up.

"Please calm down," Cam said calmly.  "Please, Xander?  Let us look at the wound?  It's bleeding."

"It's fine," he said firmly, staring at him.  Then at the idiot.  "Well?  You still think you can handle it?  C'mon."  The guy started to cry, shaking his head.  He looked at the others.  "Which one of you thinks the same way?"  One rushed him, he had picked up one of the dropped Bantos sticks.  Xander blocked his hit with it, broke his wrist to disarm him, then used the stick on his back to knock him into his buddy on the floor.  The stick cracked over his back and even Ronon had to wince at that.  He looked at it and tossed it aside.

"C'mon, you thought you could take it.  Own up to it or shut the fuck up.  Because no one here wants to hear your shit.  You might want to fuck gorillas or horses or whatever; we don't care.  No one on this base cares.  For that matter, the universal truth of the universe is that they don't care who you fuck as long as it's consensual, done for a power relationship, or it's really fun."  He stared them down, walking over there.  "Now, are you done with your girlish hissy fits?   Because I know some teenage girls you just put to shame."

The one with the newest injuries got up and Xander beat him a little bit.  Enough to make him remember it.  Then he knocked him down again.  He stared down at him.  "Got some more?"  He was sobbing in pain over his wrist, which he had landed on.  Someone tried to attack Xander from the back.  They went crunch into the wall.  Xander just stared at them then turned around.  "Not very sporting."

"Shit," Cam muttered.  He stepped in front of Xander.  "Enough."  Xander stared at him.  "I need to look at your injury, Xander.  It's bleeding a lot and I'm going to start hissing in sympathy."


"The wound," he said, putting a hand over it.  "It's bleeding.  Heavily."

"It's fine.  I can't really feel it."

"Xander, that's battle rage," John said, moving closer.  "Remember, that's not a nice thing in sparring."  He looked at the wound.  "That does look like it needs stitches.  C'mon, I'll walk you down there."

Xander stared at him.  "Why give them to me?" he asked too calmly.

"Because I thought you should correct their assumptions on what you can do since they've been calling you weak all day," he said honestly.  "That's your right and only you could do that, even if I lectured."

Xander nodded.  "I appreciate that."  He looked at his hands.  "Who's bleeding?"

"You are," Cam said.  He looked around.  "Get me a fucking bandage!" he snapped.  "Don't just stand there!"

"I'm okay.  I've probably had worse," Xander said with a small shrug and a wince.  "Ow."  He looked down.  "I've had worse."

"I don't care!" Cam told him.  "You still got shot!"  He took the bandage and put it over the injury.  Doctor Keller ran in.  "Thank you, whoever called her.  Doc, he was shot in the side."

She looked.  "Walk him to the infirmary.  What happened to them."

"The one with the broken jaw shot him," John told her.  "The one holding his wrist and crying tried to stick up for the first's gay bashing ways.  By then Xander was down and the third attacked him from behind."

"Fine.  Walk him down there."  John nodded.  "Ronon, make them do something useful since they're standing there stupidly.

Ronon touched the nearest one's comm earpiece.  "McKay to the gym," he ordered.  "For lecture duty."  He let it go with a smirk for her at her laugh.  Rodney stomped in.  "Xander was given the group of Army people who thought they were better than a gay man.  Xander lost his temper after being shot in the side.  These ones mostly stared in horror."

Rodney glared and most of the smart ones backed up.  The rest....well, not even reports would do that tirade justice.  By the time his throat was sore, Xander would be well onto healing.


Landry looked at the people in his office a few days after those Rangers had been sent back as defective.  "Okay," he said bluntly to stop the glaring.  "Colonel Sheppard, what the hell happened?"

"It was brought to my attention that some of the last set of people we were sent were disturbed that the spores had made some people find a way to deal with the gender imbalance on base.  Those same people went after Civilian Specialist Harris's reputation and tried to get him written up on charges.  Since he was the majority of the complaints by the gay bashing Rangers, I decided some sparring time was in order."

John tweaked his formal uniform jacket some.  "As you know, Civilian Specialist Harris is very well trained in self defense.  I thought it would be beneficial to show them exactly how competent he was so their problematic thoughts could be fixed.  Perhaps it was a bit mean," he added when the Army general opened his mouth.  "But I find it works well on the Marines who have such minor issues at the start.  It was going well, and Xander probably had a good idea why he had gotten that group since some of them had been spreading rumors all day about him, when one was dissatisfied that Civilian Specialist Harris beat him in a hand-to-hand match."

Landry nodded.  "How dissatisfied did he become?"

"He pulled out his sidearm and shot at Xander.  Also, he is a crap shot.  I thought Rangers were supposed to be better shots but he only hit him on the side."  He tossed over that medical report.  "As some people know, Harris does have a battle rage issue."

"I've seen that in the past," Landry agreed.

"This time, the same as last time was set off by a graze, he lost it.  Rightly so in my opinion.  That one he challenged to do it again.  Bleeding heavily I might add.  He then kicked him and broke his jaw during their next match.  One of his friends attacked with a single bantos stick that had been dropped when people rushed to stop the problem Ranger.  He got it taken from him, which was from his wrist being broken during the disarming process.  Then he got tossed at his buddy."

John shifted.  "The third decided to attack Civilian Specialist Harris from behind while he was talking down to the first two.  He got a very nice shoulder throw into the wall which made him fracture his skull and broke the guy's shoulder upon impact."  Landry winced.  He handed over the DVD.  "The tape from the gym, General."

Landry put it on his system, letting them all see what had happened.  The Army general winced at the shot, and then moaned at Xander's later conduct.  Landry looked at that general, who outranked him admittedly.  "Yes, he's the same one who got a medal for going into that same stage and killing a few other enemies with a sword," he said quietly.

"Battle axe, sir," John corrected.  "Colonel Mitchell's report said he used a battle axe."

The Army general looked at him. "Why did he have one of those on a mission?" he demanded.

"Because he favors them," John said honestly.  "That one has been with him in a lot of battles.  It's like a good luck charm of sorts."

"So he's like one of those ancient berserkers you hear stories about?"

"It's under better control since that earlier fight," John told him.  "We've had him take some specialist training from some people who could help him be more reasonable than just lost during it, sir.  I was there during it.  So was Colonel Mitchell.  He's now much harder to get into that state and much more clear minded during it.  In that earlier fight, as you saw, he attacked some of his teammates trying to get him down."

"I see."  He considered it.  "What position does he play in this organization of yours, Landry?"

"He's actually a wonderful linguist, General Hawthorne.  He knows many languages, brought in some exceptional knowledge beyond that, and he's been a credit to the base since he got here.  He's also got a strong inclination toward strange botany."

"That spore I heard about?"

"No, that was found by another team.  Harris tends to like things that like to kill people."

"I see."  He considered it.  "I could use a person like that."

"With all due respect, sir, he won't work for anyone but us," John told him.  "He's had others use him for his skills and he's very exhausted from it.  He's got severe battle fatigue now."  The general moaned at that.  "That's why mostly what he does now is translate things.  There's very few military people he trusts.  He's still not sure if he's mad at me for giving him that group."

"Hmm.  So he's of use here?"

"He's of great use here," Landry assured him.  "We send him on digs for his linguistics skills.  He's wonderful backup on his team.  He's got field medic skills that have helped us keep allies."

"Even some we're not really allies with respect him," John added.

"I know about your project, Colonel."

"Xander has been instrumental in bringing us at least ten new treaties and making the Genii leave us alone for a bit, sir.  They all think he's scary but nice and efficient because he saved a few during a wraith attack.  Earlier he had taken care of some of their injuries, which gave him access to check for concealed weapons."

"Interesting method."

"Xander's so well liked that some planets want to keep him," Landry told him.

"I would like to see how he did with real training."

"Um, no," John said, sighing at the end.  "I'm sorry, General, but Xander will disappear before it ever comes to that."

"With his status...." he started.

John held up a hand.  "He's had the experience of Sunnydale, General.  He was on the team that took down the Initiative."  The general gave him a horrified look.  "That same Harris, yes.  He will not work for anyone in the military but us.  He's assured us of it and he has escape plans if necessary."  The general opened his mouth.  "Sir, Xander was alone for a long time, that same time that caused the battle fatigue.  He doesn't really respect the rest of the military because he knows that they can be ordered to start a similar project at any time.  He might respect the guys he's on a team with, maybe, if they're good at things and don't pick on him or anything.  He does not respect the higher ups for letting that go that far."

"He can't choose," he sneered.

"He can choose," Xander said from behind him.

"You brought him, Colonel?" he asked dryly.

"No."  Xander teleported across the room, making the General flinch.  "He didn't."  He stared at him.  "No, you're not getting me.  I don't give a fuck how much you want me, how wet you are to get me under your yoke, or how much you think I can go kill people for you.  No.  Right now, I'm about an inch from leaving this whole damned country behind.  I have other offers.  I have enough money in the bank to set myself up nicely anywhere I want.  And they won't know who I am.  If you try to make me, I'll send my friends here postcards."

"You're in the military.  That means you signed up, Harris."

"No, I got conscripted for my language skills," he said dryly.  "I'm under contract with the SGC, not with the military.  I'm a civilian specialist.  Not military."

"I can correct that."

"No you can't because I won't hide my flaming bi nature any longer," he said bluntly.  "O'Neill knew that."

"We all agree that it's better for him to be himself since he is a civilian and he's always acted appropriately toward those who are straight," Landry assured him.

"Not that I care about anyone's whiny assed opinion about where my dick goes," Xander finished dryly, staring him down.  "Sir, I have the knowledge now to bring down *your* people as well as these people and the IOA.  Do you really want to send me into crisis and apocalypse mode?  Considering what I pulled the last time?"  The general shuddered.  "I'm sorry as hell your boys never learned how to suck it up and accept people as different.  Apparently someone did something wrong to make them bigots.  Maybe it was your people, maybe it was their parents, no clue.  Don't care."  He shrugged.  "I really don't care about any of you.  For all I care, I can go build a nuclear weapon right now."  He smiled sweetly.  "I did learn how."

"How..." he spluttered.

Xander shrugged but was grinning.  "I don't care.  I can save my plants, my pet, and me.  I can hatch a plan to save up to twelve people.  Or more if I just do it down here and then leave Atlantis alone."  The general shuddered.  "You're trying to put me into a corner and I don't like it.  I do have claws.  I do bite.  And I'm not going on any special black ops missions.  Never.   So get over it and find someone else to lust after."

"You injured my men."

"One shot me!" he sneered.  "He's damn lucky he's such a shitty shot.  I thought you guys were trained better than that.  Goddess knows the Marines and Air Force guys are.  Hell, even our science geeks can hit a target better than your people!"  The general got up and stomped out.  "Good!  Leave my ass alone!  I'm where I want to be and I will bite next time!" he shouted after him.  He kicked the door shut, looking at John.  "Yes, I'm still pissed at you."

"I thought you wouldn't mind, Xander.  You usually don't."

"I was in a good mood that day."

"I know."  He pulled him closer to hug him.  "I'm sorry."

"It's all right, I guess.  Next time, warn me."

"I thought I had."  He smiled.  "Please?" he asked quietly.

Xander nodded.  "Nila would kill you all if I left," he sighed.  He sat down in the empty chair, looking at his general.  "Do I have to go kill him now?"

"I really would rather you not," he admitted.

"Fine."  He picked up the phone and called someone.  "It's Xander."  He smiled.  "Nice to hear you too, sweetie.  No, some Army bigwig just tried grab me from here.  Hawthorne?"  He smirked.  "I thought you might know it.  Yeah, wanted me to black ops after I trashed some gay bashers.  No thank you.  Thanks, man."  He hung up, seeing the curious looks.  "One of the guys helping Buffy in Sunnydale who used to be Army."

"Ah," Landry said.  "What can he do?"

"His last name is Perkins."

"As in Admiral?" Landry sighed.

"As in Admiral, his godfather's the Joint Chief, two other uncles are high up....  And one's a weapon's designer," he finished with a grin.

"Okay," Landry said, sending that film from the gym to that Admiral.  With a note saying he'd probably need it after he talked to his son in Sunnydale.  He got back a grouse ten minutes later and smiled.  "Yes, his son did call immediately.  His son also told him why he couldn't steal you for black ops work either.  He's agreed, they weren't any good and Ranger standards have fallen drastically."  His red phone rang and he sighed.  "Damn it."  He picked it up.  "Yes, sir?"  He listened and nodded a few times.  "Yes, sir.  That is what happened.  Gay bashers, yes sir.  They shot him, sir.  Of course he took them on.  Yes, sir, the same one with the battle axe, sir."  He sighed.  "Of course, sir.  When?  Of course I can have him there."  He looked at Xander's clothes.  "He's not very appropriately dressed, sir.  Yes, sir, within the hour, sir."

Xander sighed and stood up.  "Be right there."  He disappeared, landing in the Oval Office.  "Sir, you wanted to see me?"  He threw the Secret Service guard that tried to pounce him.  "Shitty form, dude."

The president looked him over.  "Hank, was he wearing leather pants and a t-shirt?"  He nodded.  "Thank you.  Yes, please do forward that directly to me."  He hung up the red phone.  "Harris?"

"Yes, sir."

"You don't salute?"

"I'm not military and I didn't vote for you," he said bluntly.  He looked at the other guard inching his way.  "Sit!" he ordered and the guy sat.   He looked at the President once the guard realized he had done that.  "So, you wanted to chat about me beating the gay bashers, sir?"

"I did, Mr. Harris."  He stared at him.  "We do have a policy in place."

"Sir, I don't care and I'm not military."

"You're on a military base."

"I've been on plenty of military bases, Mr. President, and I'm not going to hide who I am.  I don't hit on the stupid ones like them.  Anything I do recreationally is nothing but subtle."

"I've heard you have two special friends?"

"No, I have two people I play video games with after hours."  The president moaned.  "Which was their problem.  Frankly, their problem became mine when one of them shot at me.  Then yes, the same thing that happened with that battle axe, happened again."

"Are you even sorry?  You could have killed them."

"That one that shot me could've killed me and I'm a hell of a lot more useful than another grunt who can't even hit a target less than a hundred feet from him."

"You're sounding like McKay," he complained.

"I like and respect Rodney.  I have since I met him.  He respects me back.  I find that fairly rare among today's people and especially among the military.  I don't care if you don't like me but I do expect respect for what I've done, what I've been through, and how badly I can fuck people up when they piss me off."

"Was that a threat?" the guard on the ground asked as he stood up.  He had his smaller gun from his ankle holster in his hand.  It was more subtle and easier to hide until he needed it.

"No, it's a statement of fact since I'm dealing with the IOA idiots who think they own me," he said dryly.  He looked at him.  "You're a bit dusty."  He helped him dust off then smiled.  "I'm perfectly nice, sociable, get along well with others most of the time, until you disrespect me or you try to hurt me.  After all, I saw plenty of that in Sunnydale," he told the president.

"I forgot you were from there," he said.  The file was transferred in and he got into it. Watching it silently.  He did wince at the shot.  "We apparently coddle you, Harris."  He turned it off.  "You have a special office?"

"No, I have an office I magically expanded."

"Magic?" he snorted.

"Did it look like I beamed in, sir?"

The president gaped.  "You can't be serious."  Xander teleported back against the walls.  "How in the hell did you do that!" he shouted.

"I told you that," he said, walking back.  "That's also how I got here."  He stared at him.  "So, no, that's not a perk.  I expanded my office so I had all my books.  I expanded my bedroom so I had a bed I could actually sleep on.  The only perk I get is my pet.  Though he's useful when I go on diplomatic missions because most everyone likes him."

The president stared.  "Pet?" he sneered.  Xander pulled out a wallet and showed him a picture.  "What is that?  A mutant iguana?"

"No, he's a baby dragon."  He smirked and put it back.  "The wraith are scared to death of him as well, and the kids like him on diplomatic missions.  It puts their parents at ease to see that we keep pets and we're decent people.  The same as me treating field injuries does."

"I suppose that's useful," he decided.  "I should throw you in the brig."

"Then I'd leave, take all my experience and knowledge with me, move somewhere nicer to me, and set up shop there without letting the locals know a thing."  He stared at him.  "I have an open invitation to my apartment in Cardiff.  Or my one in London."  The president gaped.  "And if I get really bored, well, there's more things I can translate with the money I have to travel to them."  He shrugged.  "Plus no one there will mind a bit about who I flirt with when I'm off duty.  Or even who I play video games with."

The president sneered.  "You can't do that."

"You won't find me to bring me back," he said dryly.  "And there's other places I can work with, including UNIT.   Watch me go to Doctor Jones.  She's an old friend."

The president swallowed.  "Your file doesn't state that, Harris."

"Why would it?"

"It should," he sneered.

"No, it shouldn't.  The same as you shouldn't know.  Because I don't want you to know."  He smirked.  "Though I will say, that at least O'Neill and Landry run an operation that I could have seen myself running in any of the battles I've been in."  Jack was let in.  "Hi."  He looked at the president again.  "They shot me.  That makes me the victim.  Why are you yelling at me for their stupidity?"

"You nearly killed two of them," he said firmly.

"Did I make them attack me?  No.  Did I make that one shoot me?  No.  That's their own choices.  It's pitiful that personal responsibility has left this country.  I didn't ask to be shot.  I may have dared them but they knew I was going to kick their asses and they did it anyway.  Then they whined like teenage girls.  They got what they deserved."

"One may not be fully capable of resuming duty."

"He attacked me from behind, sir.  What would *your* people do?"

Jack coughed.  "After a review of the footage, NCIS and CID both agreed that no charges should be brought, sir.  JAG was also consulted and said that they'd only charge the people who attacked him, especially the one who shot him.  That Xander was in no way at fault, even if they were sent to him to be broken because they were gay bashing and he's known to be bisexual."

"Any port in a storm?" the president sneered.

"No, I like personality," Xander sneered back.  "Funny, sweet, caring, likes oral sex."  He shrugged.  "They're hard to find these days."

The president looked at them.  "I can change my mind about Lehane's placement."

"I'd like to see you get cops up there to arrest her," Xander said dryly.  "Since they'd have to go through the stargate and it's classified."  He stared him down.  "And for that matter, I can take her with me."

"Did you know he had escape plans, O'Neill?" the president asked him.

"Of course he does.  He's generaled in at least six different wars and operated in at least ten others.  If he didn't, I'd be looking for suicidal thoughts."  He looked at Xander.  "I saw that nice apartment in London."

Xander grinned.  "Thank you.  I thought it'd be a nice place to stay for a while."

"Definitely nice.  Killer bathroom, kid."

"I like water."

"I know."  He patted him on the back.  "Calm down. "

"I am calm.  I just hate people trying to back me into a corner."  He stared at the president.  "It's up to you, sir.  I can easily go out half the IOA as being part of a secret society that believes in demon hunting.  Especially since they'd like to kill me."

The president moaned.  "That would endanger your project when they asked what the IOA was."

Xander shrugged.  "That's not my issue.  For that matter, I don't even have to mention the IOA to do it."

"Xander, please," Jack said quietly.

"No.  I'm tired of being the bitch here.  This bitch bites when he's attacked.  Or backed into a corner.  Or being put down.  I put up with enough of this shit from my family and friends.  I'll be damned now.  And if I have to go into diva mode, so be it," he told the agent moving closer to him.  "I'm not even armed, junior."

"I'm older than you, sir."

"I've spent over seven thousand years alive.  You're barely an ovum."  The guard winced.  "So back the fuck off."  He did that.  He looked at the president again.  "At least you're surrounded by cute guard dogs."

The president smirked.  "I hate you."

"I don't care.  Why would I care?"

"There's a senator that wants to destroy your project."

"Yeah and I've had enough of him too.  Pity about his mistress going to the press today."  The president gaped.  Xander stared back.  He took the remote control from the desk and turned it to a local news station.  "I told her to go to a non-frustrated news person who could use the hugest story ever.  She thinks this weatherman is cute.  It should be soon since she's not a morning person."

She walked up to where one was doing his hourly weather report and tapped him on the shoulder.  "My lover is disrespecting me and he's a senator.  I like your anchors so I'll talk to you," she said smoothly then smiled.

"Why come out now?" he asked, putting the microphone in her face.

"Because he's being an ass, taking bribes from certain secret society sorts, and then he decided to try to screw my fifteen-year-old maid."

The weather person smiled.  "What's his name?"

"Kinsey.  Senator Kinsey."  She smiled at the camera.  "I won't be disrespected by something so close to a creature that crawled from the ooze."

He nodded.  "I can fully understand that," he promised her.  "No one should ever treat their girlfriend, mistress, or wife that way."

She beamed.  "I knew I liked you for a reason."  She pinched him on the cheek.  "You have morals."  She put his arm through his.  "I have notes from him in the car, film and tapes he's sent me of disgusting things, and some things marked classified that he showed me and kept in my office that I'm not supposed to see."

The president made a call quickly while the secret service guys did the same through their communication person.

Xander smiled at Jack.  "Five hundred thou," he said quietly.  "Plus she'll get to keep or sell the house he bought her, the Jaguar, and the jewelry."

"Not a bad bargain," he agreed.  "Is she?"  Xander smirked and nodded.  "The classified stuff?"

"No clue, didn't know about it."  He turned off the tv when cars with lights in the front windshield showed up.  Then he put the remote on the desk.  He smiled at the president. "She mentioned someone named Miss Betty I should also meet in town.  That she might like the same sort of deal.  She said something about the VP."  He shrugged and looked at Jack.  "I need chocolate."

"You need less sweets, not more, Xander."

"I'm having a good day.  I found the rest of my ex's private journals and decoded them.  He moped for ten years about me and it kept him from ascending for a time."

Jack gave him a pat on the back.  "I love it when you get evil on your ex's.  How are the plants doing?"

"Ooh, you didn't hear?"  He pulled out his wallet to open to the new picture.  "That's Wednesday and Pugsley.  He's more like his daddy and she's got her momma's vines but her daddy's teeth."

"S'cute," he said with a grin back.  "Are they both man eaters?"

"Yeah.  Wednesday's got little flytrap like mouths on her vines instead of suckers.  Pugsley's got a few vines at his base and a slimmer head.  He's too young to smoke though."

"No Pubert yet?" he asked with a smile.

Xander flipped pictures.  "Yup.  The one in Botany on the base sprouted him.  He's bright green due to the food they've been feeding him."  He let Jack take it to look at.

"Definitely his momma's tentacles," he agreed.  He handed it back, letting him put it up.  "How's Armand?"

"He's good.  He's got scale itch from the spores.  He's done nothing but soak for the past three days."

"Poor guy."

"I need to have him expand and scrub him in the main showers again.  I will but I'll have to make sure the spores don't spread."

"Please.  Last time was bad enough."

"Did they get it from Jack?"

"We have.  Dawn was pouting because it didn't give her any special lusts."

"She's too young."

"She's getting close to sixteen."

"I know.  She's still too young and I expect Jack to at least taze anyone who tries to get panty points with her."

"I think that's Ianto's job," he admitted.

"Maybe, but he is nice."

"Very."  He patted him again, giving him a direct order look.  Xander grimaced but almost shrugged, getting a smile back.  He could quit showing his ass now.  He looked at the president.  "So, sir," Jack said.  "Is there a problem with him and the Army?"

"No," he decided.  "No more beating up on people, Harris."

"I'm on to train some of the newbies, sir.  How else are they going to learn and if I'm the toughest thing they run up against, good for them."  The president grimaced.  "I don't drop into that state every day.  I'm actually quite well trained to defend myself and others.  If I can make sure that they live through their tour of Atlantis, wonderful.  The same as Ronon does.  I'm not as tough to beat up as a wraith usually.  They need the skills but I won't put up with bitchiness.

"You want to be a bitch, I know a place where you can rent the dog costume and all that.  For that matter, earlier in the day, one of them had made it to the infirmary for pinching one of the female civilians when she didn't want him to."  The president groaned, shaking his head as he leaned back in his special chair.  "The Marines don't do that.  The Air Force guys don't do that.  The Army had better not do that because some of the females can't fight for themselves and I will.  Or Ronon will or Colonel Sheppard will.  Or even Rodney McKay will.  He chewed them a new one for us that day for at least two hours."

"So I heard," he admitted dryly.  "Are you content to stay there?"

"For now."

"Good.  O'Neill, can you make sure he's not going to be in any danger that might make him drop into that state again?"

"Not unless I lock him in a lab and half the linguists on base decide to do more of their own work, sir.  A few have tried to poison him when he protested them sloughing their work off on him and Doctor Jackson.  Fortunately he's immune to a lot of them."

"Can't you straighten them out?"

"We did.  We fired the whole damn lot of 'em."  He shrugged.  "There's still some dissatisfied people no matter what you do."

"A lot of them don't have personal responsibility either," Xander told him.  "It's epidemic I think.  If I fuck up, I take responsibility.  If they do, they whine and make excuses.  Then they try to hurt my pet or my plants or my books.  Which means I get to bite."

"Yes you do," Jack agreed.  "That's part of his contract, sir."

"Fine."  He waved a hand.  "Do whatever you did to get here and go.  I'll tell the head of the Army it's his own people's fault."

"It was," Xander pointed out.  "Even middle school kids know not to go at the really pissed off kid that just trashed another one.  Or to bring guns to gym class."

"Good point," one of the agents muttered.  Xander grinned at him.  "You're very forceful."

"Son, I fought Nazis, other aliens on their worlds during civil wars, in our civil war, a few wars in Rome, and a bunch of other times.  Yeah, I'm this way now."  He patted him on the shoulder.  "But I'm nice if you don't fuck with me.  People forget all about all that most of the time until they fuck with me and then they remember the really bad things and decide that I'm not the nice, sweet, fluffy sort that I usually am.  For the next month, everyone on Atlantis is going to be *real* nice to me just in case my temper comes back.  Even though it's not likely.  The same as I'm very good at what I do and when I have to do the bad things to protect others; sometimes people flinch for weeks because they don't understand that.  Most agents do."

"I do," he agreed.  "Work is one thing and if you have to fire in the line of duty, then you have to without hesitation and you'd better be the best you can be at it."

"Exactly," Xander agreed.  "While I'm a linguist most of the time, sometimes I have to go into the field and fire in the line of duty.  These guys, they fired on me first."  He shrugged. "Literally."

"I get that," he agreed.  "Thank you."

"Not a problem."

"I meant for that service."

"I'm a white knight, kid.  I can't see people suffering without stepping in.  Or a fight for a good reason without helping."

"I understand that urge fully, sir.  My brother is one and he's in Iraq."

"Then I hope he's okay and he comes home mentally and physically okay as well."  He shook the other agent's hand.  "Are you okay?"

"I'm fine, sir."

"Good.  I didn't want to hurt you and I know it's your job, but I can't take people grabbing me anymore."  He looked at Jack.  "Beaming or blipping?"

"Beaming.  Blipping isn't safe."  He beamed them back to his office to chew him a new one in private then took him back to the mountain.  "Senator Kinsey's mistress is on tv," he announced once they landed.

John cackled, coming back in with a salute and a grin.  "I saw that.  How much?" he asked Xander.

"Five hundred thou and it meant she could keep everything he got her."

"The classified stuff?" Jack asked.

"No clue.  Honestly no clue.  Ask whichever agency got to her first."  The vision hit and he moaned, holding his forehead.

"Shit, Xander," John said, making him sit down and rubbing his shoulder until he could refocus.  "Something bad?"

"The FBI agent who got there first is going to be fired because someone's going to overreact.  He had personal files on you guys and the IOA."  He blinked a few times, wiping the tears off his cheeks.  "I hate those."  He gave John a weak smile.  "Thanks."

"Welcome.  What's with the FBI guy?"

"If he's fired, he's going to become vindictive and he's seen enough to start researching as a private person.  When Travers, the watcher moron, hears somehow he'll have him killed and all that will be outed by his partner.  It'll be like Mulder and Scully went public with proof."

"Walter, get Harris some soda please," Landry called.  He picked up the red phone to tell him what he had heard.  That way he could stop it.  "Will he not out it?"

"No clue," Xander admitted.  "Talk to the man."

"I can do that," Jack agreed.  "Whose did he see?"

"Yours, Anise?  Two of the lesser IOA and Woolsey's.  Travers'."

"I'll go," Jack promised.  Walter brought in a cup of soda.  "Thank you, Walter."

"Not a problem, sir."  He left again.  He had no idea why Xander had that pinched, headache look on his face.  He stepped back in a few minutes later.  "The mess is wanting to know if they can prepare for a party later since the main bane of the base is now in ruins, sir," he told Landry.

"I think it'd be rude," he said dryly.  "Keep all parties private, Walter."

"Yes, sir."  He walked back to his seat to call and tell them that.  Then to start the gossip chain.

Jack beamed back to DC, getting the identity from his 'secretary'.  Who was former Initiative and decent even with that black mark on his soul.  He drove over there, getting out and walking up to the agent's door, knocking on it.  The disgruntled agent glared when he opened the door.  "Agent Peers, General Jack O'Neill."  The man gaped.  "I need to talk to you about those folders."

"Why?" he demanded.

"Let me in and I'll tell you."

"You can tell me out here," he said firmly.

"What did you see of mine, Agent Peers?"

"Enough to know that the government is keeping secrets."

"Quite a few," he agreed.  "Do you really want to see people become paranoid about it?"  Peers let him in and he let him ask questions.  Within reason.  This man could be very dangerous to them.  He did tell him gleefully about Travers.  He hated the council.  Just as much as Xander did.  He hated to deal with IOA asshole Travers on anything.  So that, that was sweet.  The man mentioned a battle and he sighed, nodding to agree it had happened.  The man slumped down in his seat, drinking from a bottle of beer.

They talked about why he couldn't out the project.  Humanity wasn't ready yet and they couldn't do what they needed to do, yet, if they were more open.  Someday but not today.  Probably in their lifetimes though.  He did pass on a warning about Travers being vicious enough to have him taken out then he left, leaving him to sulk and do more background work on that.  Buffy wouldn't mind if the Council was brought down, right?


Buffy looked at the tv her mom was watching.  "Hey, um, Mom?" she called since Joyce was getting a snack.  "First a senator and somehow that led back to the Council."  She called Giles.  "Turn on CNN right now, Giles.  Because they're profiling the abuses of the Watchers Council."  He choked and dropped the phone while rushing for his tv.  She could hear it come on.  They both watched it and sighed.  She hung up and called the tip line.  "Listen," she said.  "Some of their work was necessary.  I know that for a fact.  I'm not one but I'm kinda one of their charges.  Yeah, the head people suck for many and varied reasons, but not all of them are bad.  Some of them were actually fired for being good."  She hung up and leaned back.  This was horrible!


Xander came out of the stargate with John, shaking his head.  "And still, no applause for us."

"What took you so long?" Woolsey demanded.  "Armand has bene moping around McKay for days."

Xander grimaced.  "We kinda got called into a Senate hearing after Kinsey's mistress outed him.  Then the FBI agent that confiscated the classified files he had, including yours, somehow got slightly outed on the Watchers front.  Congress was not pleased with Sunnydale or the Council."  Woolsey gaped, looking ready to cry.  "You weren't outed.  The IOA wasn't outed.  The Council is... well, deep shit is putting it mildly.  Buffy was *so* pissed.  She had to save some reporter that followed her on patrol and everything."

Woolsey whimpered.  "Why?" he asked.

"It got Kinsey out of our panties," he said.  "I had no idea he had classified files."

Woolsey sighed, shaking his head.  "What is the IOA doing?"

"Mostly cowering," John told him.  "It's fine, Woolsey.  They focused on the Council.  Anyone who needed to know about you guys does."

"Good point."  He went to find something for his stomach.  He hated this point in his life.  "Harris, Nila has been pouting for days as well," he called as he walked off.

"Going," he promised.  "Nila, I'm back," he called, bringing Armand running and leaping at him.  "Oof, heavy ass dragon," he complained, cuddling him.  "I should've brought you with me.  Buffy could've petted you for days."  He walked out to Nila, finding her pouting at him.  "Don't do that.  I had to free some of the pressure off the program."

"Why?" she asked quietly.

"Because the guy was trying to climb into our panties with us and it wasn't comfy with them trying to claim top."  She gave him a confused look then accessed his files to find the meaning.  She burst out giggling, patting them both on the head.  "I'm glad to be back."

"I'm glad you're back too.  Some grumpy female scientist tried to board me and I just would not have it.  She was rude."

"I'm sure she was.  Did anyone tell you who she was?"

"Carter something."

"Sam?"  She nodded.  "She's part of Cam's team and the top scientist on the main base right now.  I can introduce you formally if you want."

"She didn't listen to me.  Acted like I wasn't here."

"She's not always aware of what's around her.  Like Rodney when he's walking, eating, and mumbling over whatever he's reading."

"Oh, that.  I still don't like her.  Can't I keep Rodney and Miko?"

"That's between you guys and John."

"I'll ask him then."  She smiled and appeared to him in the office, ignoring the ranting woman.  "Can't I keep Miko as mine?  I like her.  She treats me well and very courteously."

"She does, and I like that about her," John promised with a smile.  "But Rodney might need her."

"I won't be leaving for a while so would that be a problem?  I like Xander's family.  They respect me."

He nodded.  "I know.  You're going to be seeing a lot of them during the retrofitting.  Has Rodney gone over his ideas with you?"

"Yes and I'm quite pleased.  He's giving me a wonderful bathroom," she said happily.  "It was very odd seeing them taking breathing equipment to the pier to pee into space through a minor break in the shield created at the end of a funnel."

"I'm sure it was," he agreed.  "It would've freaked me out a lot."

"I understand that saying," she said proudly.  "Was the bad person defeated?"

"Oh, so defeated and some others too.  That's what made us late.  His downfall led to others."

"It usually does.  People with power gather people around to kiss their hiney's."

"Who taught you that?" he asked with a smirk.

"Radek.  He's very good at explaining.  Faith said it first though."

"That sounded just like her.  We'll see what we can do.  Now, have you met Colonel Sam Carter yet?"

"I have and she was rude.  She acted like I was only a hologram."  She disappeared.

John looked at her.  "Nila is very sensitive, Sam.  She's been alone for a long time.  We all respect Nila, and treat her with respect," he said firmly.  "Xander and Rodney both pat her now and then too.  She's very sentient."

"She's a program!"

"Actually, she's a merge of five programs," Rodney said as he walked in.  "Senate hearings?"

"The Watchers Council fell from Kinsey's personal notes."

"Ah."  He beamed.  "Good."  He handed over something.  "Personnel problems."

"Woolsey?" he asked with a point.  "He's technically over the scientists."

"Not them.  Some of your neanderthals."

"What now," he complained.  He read over the report and sighed.  "They broke one of the stored ones on purpose?"  Rodney nodded.  "At least it was empty."

"They didn't seem to see that point when I lectured them but I'm not sure how they're functioning with only a brain stem active."  He crossed his arms, staring at him.   "I asked Ronon to beat them because they could've blown us all up.  They were being malicious on purpose.  Then they trashed chemistry and tried in Botany but they had the two baby plants in there to suck up to them.  Pugsley nearly ate his first Marine.  Wednesday has attached herself quite firmly to the new botanist.  Sucks on her all the time."


"In there," he said with a point.  John downloaded it and handed the laptop back.  "Thank you," he said as he walked off.

"Hold on," John called.  Rodney came back.  "Nila likes Miko and Radek to keep working on her."

"That's not a problem.  Radek is more than eager to work on her fittings and the bathroom.  Miko as well.  She considers Nila just as beautiful as Atlantis is, and I can see that point of view myself," he said, noticing the projector was active so one of them was listening in.  He smiled at John.  "I'll keep the stupid people off her anyway.  Miko and Radek can be in charge."  John smiled and nodded.  "Thank you for letting me know."

"Not a problem.  She likes you too."

Rodney smirked.  "She's smart enough to know true genius when she meets it."  He strolled off.

John looked at Sam.  "You have to treat both AI's with respect, Sam.  They're not dumb.  They're very human.  They're very advanced, and they're very kind.  Even if now and then they do eject people into the ocean for some reason."  She huffed off to Woolsey's office.  He sighed, looking at the projector.  "Hi," he said quietly.

Nila appeared.  "I don't like her for many reasons, beyond her being rude."

"I know."

"She acts worse than Rodney does on a bad day without coffee."

"I know.  She's the head scientist so she gets to boss him around."

Nila snorted.  "He has more skills."

"She's very skilled," he corrected.

"Rodney was teaching me Ancient's math.  From before my people."

"He learned that from Xander," he said with a grin.

"It's very helpful and now I understand that ugly little power supply box."

"I think he's planning on putting a cloaking device on it or something."

"It still hums."

"I know.  If I had another place to have put it, I would have."  She smiled and nodded.  "I'm making out orders back to Earth.  Do you need anything material wise?"

"Can I have a few sleeping rooms put in so those who work themselves to sleep can?  It's cute seeing them sleeping in corners but probably not good for them.  I can beam them onto a cot."

He smiled.  "I can put bedrolls on you for them.  Then they can find a better spot."

"That would be acceptable.  And something to eat?  They keep forgetting to eat.  I had to eject Daniel this morning for that because he refused to listen to Cam."

"I can have some stuff put out there in a closet for them."  She beamed and patted him on the head before leaving.  He made notes for that, sending them to supply.

Woosley walked in.  "She won't accept Carter?"

"Carter sees her as a machine.  She said she was rude to her," he said, looking at him.  "She likes Miko and Radek.  They're quiet, respectful, talk to her like she's a person, all that.  Sam apparently pushed past her like she was a hologram."

"I know.  I saw," he sighed.  "Can we fix it?"

"I'll see if Xander or Cam can."

"That's fine.  I'll talk to them myself.  Anything else that she wanted?"

"She wanted to keep Miko and Radek.  She wanted to keep Daniel.  She likes Daniel but had to eject him when he refused to listen and go eat.  She asked for some stuff so they could sleep more comfortably when they fell asleep out there while working.  Plus some food stores."

"That's reasonable."

"She's very excited she's getting a bathroom.  Said it was a bit strange when they had to put on breathing gear to go to the end of the pier and pee."

"I don't even want to think about how nasty that must be," he decided, walking off.  He walked out to the dock.  "Nila, can I come talk to you please?"  She appeared and nodded.  He walked down the stairs and looked at her.  "They would like you to give Sam Carter a chance.  She's very brilliant and she's been learning from Ancient tech too," he said quietly.

"She's rude."

"I'm sure you've noticed some of the scientists on Atlantis see you the same way.  That's a common problem among scientists.  If it's not walking on two legs, without body fur, and firm to the touch they don't believe it has true sentience."

"In your case you're not corporeal enough for her," Xander added as he joined them.  "She doesn't understand that you can be just as smart as she is, and just as great as Rodney is."  She beamed at that compliment.  "Because she's kinda anything but human-phobic."

"She had been a Tok'ra host," Woolsey told him.

"They're still human based, Woolsey.  What would she do if she ran into a talking furry people race?  Or even the Ewok's?"  Radek snickered at that.  "She'd probably treat them like they're not really human too.  It's a common problem," he agreed, "but one she can overcome."

"I might like her but she pokes too hard and she didn't listen to me.  She was talking to herself about what something did and I told her but she ignored me."

"You notice the really smart ones often don't listen to anyone?" Xander asked her.  She smiled and nodded.  "She's got that problem too.  Just like Rodney does."

"I noticed but he is still nicer to me.  He talks to me, not about me most of the time."

"Which we love about him," he promised with a smile.  "But they would like her to take over the chief scientist spot when you get to earth.  She's part of Cam's team and he hates breaking in new scientists."

"Can't I keep Miko and Radek?"

"I don't know," Xander admitted.  "We can ask the generals."  She beamed at him for that.  "I'll make sure John sends that off in the next data packet for you."  She kissed him on the cheek then patted Woolsey on the head before disappearing again.  He looked at Woolsey.  "She does treat her like a thing," he said quietly.  "I like Sam, I liked working with her, but it's a blind spot of hers."

"I agree.  Nila is too sentient to not be seen as such.  I'll make sure they hear about the amended rotation she wanted."  He left.  He felt sorry for the city.  She had been alone and sentient for a very long time.  Millions of years.  Of course she got to be a bit picky and not wanting mean or boring people or even rude people on her.

Xander went back to the work area Daniel had created.  "Hey, Cam, what do you think about her wanting Miko or Radek for her CSO spot?"  He sat down in front of his computer again.

He considered it.  "I know Radek's been in the field a few times but I'd want someone who I knew could handle it if something broke during a situation or an attack.   She won't take Sam?"

"Have you noticed Sam doesn't consider anyone not human human enough?"

"Yeah, I have," he admitted.  Daniel nodded from his seat across from him, looking up.  "Plus Nila said she was muttering to herself about what she was looking at and when Nila told her what it was for, she ignored her and poked really hard."

"You cannot poke her.  Some of the wires are fragile from water damage and age," Radek told him.  "I thought her smarter."  Miko smiled at that.  "I can channel Rodney."

She giggled.  "I almost miss him snarking all the time."  Cam looked at her and she blushed.  "He's been nicer this last week because there's donuts and coffee again."

"I'd hate to see him without coffee too," Daniel said dryly.  "He drinks more than I do."

"Those days, I share my caffeine pills," Xander said dryly.  They all giggled at that.  "There's days when I feel like a pirate, out here on the floating city."

"Not _Water World_?" Daniel teased with a smirk.

"No, it was crappy."  They all laughed and nodded.  "So, Radek, while I was gone, did you get the Excel Saga DVDs?"

"I did and we all went mindless from that.  It is a happy mental drug," he said.

"Vala said she'd join their movement," Cam said dryly.

"Some day I've got to go to an anime con and bring her with me," he said with a sigh at the end.  "I'm sure I can get her to go as a schoolgirl and she likes pigtails already."

"She'd think it'd be more like porn," Daniel said dryly.

"I got her to watch Inuyasha.  She wanted to be Kagome for a bit."

"A school girl with powers?" Miko asked.  Xander smiled and nodded.  "Some of that one is for sappy girls."

"Yes it is," Xander agreed dryly.  "But he's a bad boy wannabe so they like it for him too."

"Exactly, for sappy girls," she said with a smile at him.  She said something in Japanese, making Daniel snicker.  Xander shot back and she cackled, falling onto her side since she was sitting on the stairs.  Daniel snickered at that too.  He grinned.  She shook her head.  "So bad, Xander."

"I try sometimes."  He got back to work on the journals Daniel had put in his list.  "Weren't a few of these yours, Daniel?"  He looked over at him with a grin.  "Did those lazy linguists give you bad ideas?" he taunted.

"Quite, but I'm nearly done for the day or she'll send me into the water again."

"Thank god the spores are gone," Cam quipped.

"Yeah but the baby plants are all on the main base," Xander said dryly.  "I checked, they're not in quarantine yet."  They all moaned.  He grinned.  "I'm staying up here because some of those guys there."  He shuddered.  "Eww."

"Very," Cam agreed.  Rodney came stomping back.  "What now?"

"Problems."  He looked at Xander.  "Landry said that Travers saved himself by handing up the IOA."

"Who didn't talk or had him killed?"

"They tried to have him killed.  There's some very curious journalists."

"I had no idea he had classified files, people.  Sorry, no idea.  I had the vision so they'd know how bad it would be if that agent had outed more things."

"Fine."  He shook his head, telling John that.  John relayed that the generals, who complained but apparently it was fine for now.  He shrugged.  "They're dealing with it but no one in the IOA has mentioned the project yet."

"More hearings?" he guessed.

"Yes.  Unfortunately we think."

"Damn it.  I just got back."

"Bring Armand this time.  Maybe he'll scare them since they are soul sucking too," Radek offered.

"I made sure the reporters didn't follow us back to the base," Xander told him.  "Or else they'd be asking more questions."

Rodney smiled.  "Landry said thank you for that."

Xander grimaced.  "It'll be fine.  You guys will be fine.  Even if not, there's been other alien invasion attempts," he pointed out.  They stared at him.  "At least in England."

"So us being covert doing that probably won't be seen as too bad," Rodney decided, walking off talking to John about that idea.  Landry apparently liked it too.

Xander shook his head.  "If I had known, I would've had her hand over the files first."

"We know," Cam promised, patting him on the back.

"Xander, I am picking up a subspace fluctuation like you had at home," Nila reported.

"Hellmouth here?" he demanded.  "Why?"  She showed up and pointed.  He looked.  There was a bright spot twinkling and getting bigger.  It could only have one cause and only two people could probably pull it off.  "Oh, shit, catch her."  Nila caught Dawn and pulled her gently onto the deck.  "What the fuck!" he demanded.

"Mom will soap your mouth, Xander," she said, hands on her hips.

He stared at her.  "What are you doing here?  In another galaxy?"


"Ah, shit."  Cam was already calling John to warn him.  "Why?" he asked, looking resigned.

"She was trying to protect me because someone started to ask if Torchwood knew anything about the Council.  Ianto called Buffy to warn her.  Gwen called her back to tell her I wasn't safe because reporters were sniffing around.  So Willow sent me somewhere safe.  To you."

"I'm not in Colorado."

"I noticed there's sunlight and water and air."  She gave him a sheepish look and he sighed, getting up to hug her.  She sank into his arms with a sigh of relief.

"We'll deal with it."

"Thanks, big brother."

"You're welcome.  You know that."  Woolsey came stomping in.  "Richard Woolsey, IOA, meet Dawn Summers, my successor and Daniel's protégé."

He stopped to stare at her.  "I heard someone complaining about you to the Council members on the IOA."

She looked over Xander's shoulder at him.  "Are you one of them?"  He shook his head.  "Good then I won't kick your ass."  She went back to her cuddle.  Armand bleeted so she picked him up to cuddle too.  "Hi, Armand."

"Your egg?" he asked.

"Safely in my bra, like usual."  She floated it out to show him.

He checked.  "Nice job so far."  He let her tuck it back under there.  "Okay, we'll figure it out.  You know Daniel and Cam, right?"  She smiled and nodded, wiggling her fingers at them.  "These are Miko and Radek, part of the science team.  Rodney's second and third, the ones he doesn't often yell at."

She smiled.  "Hi.  Sorry.  Willow *way* overreacted."

"Just a bit," John said dryly.

"This is John Sheppard, he's our military head here," Xander told her.

She smiled.  "Xander said you were young and a hotshot pilot.  So are you as gay as _Top Gun_ too?"

He burst out laughing while Cam moaned and shook his head.  "No.  Sorry."

"Damn.  But hey, like them barely legal?" she asked with a happy grin.


"Well, shoot, the hot ones never hit on me so I had to start flirting."

Xander shook his head.  "You're not quite old enough for that yet."

"Buffy had Angel by my age."

"Yeah and look how that turned out."

"I've got a bunch of emo guys in my school so I'm bored shitless with the selection."

"Get Spike to go eat some then."

"Don't tempt me.  He really and truly freaked out Jack and Ianto.  Gwen just stared in horrified shock.  Jack had a real, long rant at God about why him.  He said he finally understood what you meant about him being an offspring."  Xander beamed.  "I know, it was cute to watch.  He swore at you for nearly an hour."

"Yay."  She giggled, hugging him again.  Armand got squished between them but he liked it like that apparently.  "So, guys, any word on if Willow is presently being beaten to death by someone?"

"Jack told me he told her he'd feed her to our pterodactyl," Dawn said with a happy smile.  "Or leave her on the planet with the sludge geysers."

"That's almost cruel," Xander said with an evil smirk.  He even let out an evil chuckle.  "Did she learn?"

"Yeah, Miss Martha kinda retcon'd her enough that she decided Tara was a saint and Jack was Satan when he showed up."

"He can be if you piss him off.  The Doctor too."

"He showed up to recharge and said hi."

"That's cool.  How is he?"

"Doing better.  New cute companion that reminds me of you."  She shrugged.  "Anyway."  She poked him on the chest.  "Where's Faith?"

"Faith to Nila for a visitor from home," he called over the comm.  He went back to holding her.  He had missed her.

She hopped down, looking curious until she got a squealing, wiggling armful of girl and dragon.  "Red?" she guessed.

"Yeah, Gwen convinced her I might be in danger.  It wasn't even Tuesday," she quipped, waving a hand.  Armand snatched it with his tail and put it back around him.  "Aww, did you miss me, Armand?" she cooed.  She beamed at Faith.  "Hey, I'm nearly your size now."

"Nearly," she agreed.  "X?"

"Going to chew Gwen first and then Willow?  Sure.  I can do that.  Armand, want to go with?  We'll see Jack and Ianto."  He hopped down and came over to climb up his daddy so they could go.  He pulled out his bracelet and popped down to earth.  He stared at Jack, who was growling at Spike.  He bopped Spike on the head.

"Oi!" he complained, turning to look at him.  "You," he said with a light sneer.

"Yeah, because Willow just sent Dawnie to me because Gwen convinced Willow that she was in danger."

Jack moaned, shaking his head.  "No," he moaned.  That made more sense than Spike taking her.

"Yeah," Xander said dryly.  Armand spotted Ianto and hopped down, going to nuzzle him.  "Hi, Ianto."

"Xander.  Can you take the undead clone there before Jack has flashbacks?"

Xander looked at him.  "Scram until Dawn comes back?"

"No fun here anyway," he muttered.  "They don't even scream."

"Spike, are weevils demons?" he asked.

"Nah, not quite.  Nasty little trans-dim shits who take all the good prey and don't even play kitten poker."  He lit up.  "You sure she's fine?"

"I left her with my big brothers and mean uncle.  Plus Faith."  Spike choked.  He grinned.  "Shoo."  He huffed but left through the sewer entrance.

"Let me get a torch to seal that," Ianto said, walking off petting the dragon.

Jack looked at Xander.  "I love Dawn.  She's like a mini-you some days, kid."

"Yeah, she can be."  He shrugged.  "Nearly time."

"I know."  He straightened up.  "Gwen, go home for the night so he has to hunt."

"I love me some hunting," he said with an evil grin at her.  She fled.  He looked at Jack, then shrugged.  "She nearly landed in the water too."

"That would've gotten a very loud shriek," he complained.

"Yup."  He smirked.  "So, how is she doing?"

"She hates all the emo boys.  She's crap at flirting but I'm working on it for when she's of age."

"As long as she's legal," Xander pointed out.

"By our standards, she is."  He smirked.  "I've met one of her schoolmates and he's a sad example of manhood.  Those files?"

"No idea she had them," Xander sighed.

"Pity but cute work."

"They threatened to kill me again."  He grinned.  "So, anything else we need to exchange for a bit?"

"I'm taken."

"I'm...casual."  He shrugged.  "It's nice."

"Good.  You need more of that and less emo time yourself."

"They play video games with me."

"Ah."  He came down to give the boy a hug.  "Send her back when the squealing causes migraines."  He clapped im on the back.  "The Doctor's new companion?  Almost exactly like you only perky breasts."

"I don't think I ever did that," he said, considering it.  Jack gave him a head nudge and a grin.  "So, Willow?"

"Oh, so mine," he promised.

"You know, if I was being bad, we could make an herbal viagra knockoff from the spores and then run a spa from the geysers of mud.  We'd make millions to fund our other work."

"He'd kill us both."

"Probably, which is what's stopping me."  He grinned at Ianto, taking his dragon back.  Armand leaned over to nuzzle Jack's neck a few times then cuddled the daddy again.  "Let me go back to Miss Squeal.  Let Buffy know I have her?"

"I can do that when I go kick in Willow's door."

"Spank Gwen for me?"

"She'd like it," he said blandly.

"Let the Doctor spank Gwen for us?"

"Don't tempt me.  He liked Dawn.  Called her plucky and fun but tragically too young to travel.  Said he reminded her of Rose."

"Rose reminded me of Buffy."

"Yeah, kind of."  He shook that thought off.  "Anyway, go watch over your own sister for a bit.  I'll get her excused from school for a few days."

"Thanks, Jack.  Let me know if you need stuff."

"I could use a generator," he said with a smirk.

"For that, talk to Landry or Rodney."  He and Armand disappeared.

Jack took the torch and turned it on, lighting it easily.  He sealed the sewer entrance and went to find any others they had.  He did *not* want Spike in the hub ever again.


Xander reappeared, getting an armful of Dawn.  "Jack will get you an excused absence, will tell your sister where you are, and then will kick Willow around for a bit.  And I sent Spike away."

She grinned.  "They are *so* big brothers."

"Mine too," he promised.  "And Mean Uncle Rodney too."  He pointed.  She smiled and waved.  "So," he told John.  "Anything?"

"Let her work with you as a mini test," John ordered, but he was smiling.  "She can sleep in your office or in Faith's room."  He left them alone to send that update back.  This was going to be interesting.

"Hey, no demons," she said.

"Spike said weevils aren't.  They're trans-dim sorts."

"Yeah, which sucks.  I'd like to stake 'em all.  Jack said that's mean since it won't kill 'em."


"Does work like a charm," she admitted, taking his arm and sitting down in his spot to go over what Daniel was working on.  She smiled and started to type.  She was getting much better at Ancient.  Xander only had to correct a few words on her.

Xander smiled at Radek, who winked.  He'd invite Xander down for some ...tea later on.

Dawn looked at him.  "If you like him that way, Radek, I'm cool with it," she assured him.  "I'm all sorts of cool with it since Jack and Ianto are pretty much in the sort of gooey minded love that it makes me sigh because I no longer need to read books."  She went back to it while he cackled and Xander blushed.

"You're still conjugating Is strangely," Xander noted.  "The one after it is a name.  Apparently she was cheating and a ho."

Daniel snickered.  "I ran into that mention a few times too."

"What's a ho?" Nila asked, appearing.

Dawn stared at her, head tipped to the side.  "Wow, I want to do that when I die."  She beamed at the ghost.  "Hi, I'm Dawn, I'm like Xander's little sister."

"This is Nila and she's the AI for the city," Daniel told her.

"That's very cool, cooler than being a ghost, Nila."  Nila smiled at her.  "Don't worry, I babble.  I'm at that age, ya know?  So has Xander been good?  Because if he's not, I'll find someone to spank him."

"No you won't," Xander assured her.

"Jack said that's why he's my big brother.  So he can paddle me if I show that bad of taste in my boys."  She stuck her tongue out at him.  "I don't know why he didn't like the sporty type."

"Ah, the future rapist.  Yeah, heard about him."  He patted her on the back.  "I'm having you married off to someone I respect."

"Fine."  She smiled at Nila.  "Never, ever get big brothers like him.  He's *totally* overprotective and won't let me date or have the sex."  She smirked at the guy coming in wearing just sweat pants and a pair of sneakers.  "Hi, Little Jon."

"Not cute, Summers, and still not going to put on a free show for you."

"Shoot.  Vala agreed it would be cute."

"Vala likes watching us spar more," he shot back with an evil look.  "Speaking of, Xander and Cam."

"We can take a break for that," Daniel agreed.  "Nila, want to come watch with us?"

"I may," she promised.  "I don't like seeing you boys hurt each other though."

"Each whack means you get faster and better," Dawn told her.  "It means you learn to duck or avoid too.  Jack's mean about that stuff.  Teal'c too."

"Wait until you see Ronon," Jon taunted.  Armand's head popped over the edge of the table from her lap.  "Of course you can come watch.  Don't try to join in though.  We don't want to hurt you by accident, dragon."  He walked off and they followed.  Even Miko.  She was trying hard not to drool over them.  Her calendar was not this informative.  Jon waved Dawn in.  "Dawn, this is Teyla and Ronon.  They're natives to around here."

She smiled and shook Teyla's hand.  "I've heard you were really good and I should get you to finish my self defense training."  She looked at Ronon, who was shirtless, of course.  The universe was clearly laughing at her.  "Do you like younger women?" she asked with a shy grin.

"He's a widow," Xander said patiently.  "Though he is one of the few I'd consider acceptable to date you."  She bounced back to a seat near Miko and Nila, cuddling the dragon.  "Yeah, she's that Dawnie," he told them.

Ronon shook his head.  "She's very...bouncy."

"She squeals and asks all pilots if they're gay too," Jon told him.  "Staffs or rods?"

"Rods," everyone else agreed.

"Good, I could use more work," Jon decided.  He tossed their favored sets out.  Teyla took hers and smiled.  "I know, we'll be perfect gentlemen since you're joining in today," he quipped.  She swatted him.  "Hey!"

"Hush," she ordered with a smirk.  "You are not that mannerly no matter what you claim.  I have seen you eat."  She changed rods with Xander.  Then again with Jon.  That was better.  Xander changed with Jon and it was better for him, a bit heavier.  He and Ronon changed then changed back.  John changed with him and it was all good.  Teyla looked at them.  "On four?"  They nodded and Dawn called out 'four'.  They attacked.

Dawn stared, mouth slightly open.  "Wow, Xander has really trained a lot.  I remember my sister saying he tripped before."

"That was probably growth spurts or something," Miko said quietly.  Vala plopped down behind her with Doctor Keller.  Armand crawled up Dawn's chest to meep at them, getting head pets.  Then he settled back into his girl's lap.  She was the daddy's sister so of course she was his aunt.  He meeped and growled at one blow that seemed to send Xander back.

"Relax, Armand.  It's sparring," he called out.  He dove back in, getting Jon out this time for that unkind blow to the ear.  Jon fell with a groan and Teyla joined him after a few more minutes with him and Ronon ganging up on her.  John was holding steady.  Cam was starting to pant.  "Cam, you need more practice," he teased.  "You're not in shape."

"Bullshit," he countered and got Xander on an unguarded part while he was attacking John.  "Sometimes you gotta be sneaky."

Xander smirked and tripped him then blew a kiss.  "You look hot that way."

Cam snickered but made himself get back up and join in after catching his breath.  Jon too.  The only way you built stamina was to push it.  Xander ducked under a blow of Ronon's and did a flying kick to knock him down and out.  "Hey, no fair learning off ninja movies!" Cam complained.

"Really," Jon agreed.  He got Xander from behind and Xander got him back then Cam and John.  He was giving them an evil smirk too.  "New plans?" he taunted.

"Yup, sure am."  He ducked one attack by John but Jon muscled in to get him when he was more vulnerable, making him grimace.  "Really, Jon, playing with my balls that way is just unkind if you're not doing it for real."  The women watching all cackled at that.  He got them both back and this time John won.  Barely.   They were all sweaty and panting hard.

"No pictures," John ordered.  A few women groaned.  Xander and Jon gave him a curious look.  "The underground smut railroad made a male and female calendar.  We're all in there and there's a group sparring shot too."

Xander shrugged.  "I can be someone's fantasy but they can only touch if they ask nicely and I like them."  He wiped down and put up his weapons then walked over to Dawn, pulling her up to hug her.

"Eww, sweaty and not like I have other clothes!" she complained, pushing at him.  "Eww!"

He grinned.  "This, for those who don't know, is my kinda little sister Dawn Summers.  She's going to be following Daniel and I."  They all waved and smiled.  "As you can see, Armand thinks she's very snuggly but if anyone disrespects her I get to beat an ass grandly."  He walked her out.  "C'mon, let me shower and we'll get back to work."

"K.  Is Jack going to go alien mediaeval on Willow?"

"Yup, sure will."

"Cool.  I want film."  He took her up to his room so she could call and tell him that.  She wandered around cuddling Armand while babbling at Jack, especially about the sparring.  Sweaty men were nice as long as they didn't make her sweaty without her consent.  "Xander, Jack said to quit teaching me to go for jocks."

Xander looked out at her.  "I don't care about jocks.  Some of my favorite people are military."  He ducked back into his shower.  "Thank god I don't have minutes," he called.

She giggled and told him that so he hung up and went to set up a camera so Dawn could share his disgust at Willow's current problem.  And how he was going to get Gwen too.  With her gone it meant he had to do more paperwork and listen to Gwen complain more often.

Xander came out in a towel, grabbing some pants to put on in the bathroom.

Dawn turned while pacing and talking to her mother, finding someone at the door.  "So that noise was the doorbell?" she guessed.  She shrugged and went back to babbling.  She finally had to hang up when Xander took the phone from her and blew a kiss before hanging up.  "Who's he?" she asked with a nod at the guy in the doorway.

"Hi," he said with a wave.  "What's up?"

"Um, Harris, who's she?  And does the Colonel know you snuck up someone underage?"

"She's my little sister, not a hooker, and yes, he's seen her.  He was there a few minutes after she appeared.  Woolsey too."

"Oh, okay.  Um, there's a fight in the mess and we can't get it stopped.  Can you come be your scary, badass self?  They wouldn't even listen to the colonels."

"Sure."  They walked down there with him.  He walked in and Armand hopped down, growing big suddenly.  He picked the two idiots up and shook them.  Xander stared at them.  "Good afternoon!" he said loudly, making them flinch.  "I'm told *someone* is not playing nicely?"  He smiled.  "Who might that be I wonder."

"Please let the dragon eat us," one of them begged.  "Please?  I don't think I can take sparring with you, Harris."

Dawn snickered.  "You know, he's not the mean one in the family.  That's my sister on PMS."

"You hired the colonel a hooker for his birthday?" one pouted.  "I need to go up in rank."

"She's my sister," Xander said dryly, glaring at him.

"Oh, please, let the dragon eat me instead of him," he begged, looking at Armand.  "I'm tasty and I dripped sauce on me earlier."  Armand licked the sauce but unfortunately didn't eat him too.  He started to cry.  "Please don't maim us, Harris!"

"Geez, wooses much?" Dawn asked him.  "You're not that scary."

Xander grinned.  "I am now."  Colonel Mitchell strolled in.  "These two want to be eaten, Cam."

"I head about the fight and John getting pushed into a doorway and nearly off the balcony."

"I thought she was a birthday present for Colonel Sheppard," one of the guys said.  "The dragon won't eat me.  Please?" he begged.

"I don't eat people.  I don't want to start a bad trend.  Teal'c might be too stringy and Daniel would taste like coffee."  Sam snickered. "She'd taste like blue jell-o."

"I would, of course, be soft, tender, and delectable," Vala said smugly.

"Sure, if we have to eat someone to survive, we'll cook you," Cam assured her.  He looked at the two idiots.  "I'd go confess right now to Woolsey."  They ran for it.  He patted Armand.  "Thanks, big one."  He snuffled his hair then shrank and walked beside Dawn through the food line.

Xander looked at Cam.  "You took my fun."

"You can beat them up later."  They got their own food and sat down to chat with the hyperactive mouth of doom Dawn.  Armand was trying to hold her down by sitting on her head since she was in the sun.  It worked for them apparently.

Woolsey stomped in.  "Harris, no more using the dragon to threaten them.  Even if they did want to rent your sister."  He got some milk and went back to the office.  More idiots, it just made his week.

Xander shrugged.  "Wasn't part of the plan, he did it on his own.  He's clearly very protective of you."

"That's because he has good taste."

"Yes he does," Vala agreed, coming over to join them.  "Hi, Armand."  He gave her a sleepy meep then stretched before getting comfy again.

Dawn looked up.  "You're a bit heavy."

"Sorry," Xander said.  "Armand, hit the railing.  Like you do with Jon."  Armand groaned but moved down to stretch out in his own patch of sunlight on the floor.  "Fine.  Don't let yourself be stepped on."  He dug into his food.  "Why are we having this?  Eww."  He put down his fork.  "We should riot over this.  What is this?" he called toward the line.

"Stew!" one of the lunch ladies called back.  "Shut up and eat it, Harris.  Or you won't be strong enough to make women pant while you spar!"

"Eww."  He ate everything else.  That stew was toxic looking.   He walked up there to get a piece of fruit.  "Did you make it from the toxic bunny that gave Armand heartburn?" he asked as he grabbed an apple.  Rodney took it from his hand.  "Hey!"  He got a banana instead and went back to his seat.  Rodney was eating very fast so he stole his fork.  "Slow down before you choke and I have to do CPR.  I'm not sure if I'll make another scientist be called or not," he said dryly.  He handed the fork back and peeled his banana while Dawn choked and laughed.

"I'm fine and I doubt you doing CPR could create another great scientist such as I am," he complained.

"Why not, it made a second slayer," he said dryly, stuffing his mouth.  Rodney gave him an odd look so he grinned.  "Kendra."

"I forgot about that.  Though I'm sure there's no list of potentials to be called if something happens to me."  He stuffed his mouth again.

Dawn took it this time.  "My mom would swat you majorly for gulping like you're at the breast, dude.  Slow down and enjoy the food.  Even the toxic bunny stew."

"Is it?" he asked.

"I don't know but I wouldn't eat it."  He ate another bite of banana, glancing at Armand then around.  "Okay, something's got to be going on somewhere.  I'm feeling twitchy."  His cellphone rang.

"I want that calling plan," she sighed.

He smirked and stuck his tongue out while he pulled it out of his pocket.  "Magic.  You can learn it too.  Hey, General Jack, what's up?"  Jon's head popped up from his seat with the pilots.  "Really?  Let me put you on speaker."   He did that.  "Okay, I've got Rodney, Cam, and Dawn here with me.  Plus Vala.  JOHN!" he shouted.  "Jon!"  He waved him over and Evan came too.  John came jogging in.  "Okay, we're all here, go for it."

"I do not know how you brought down a boil on our asses and uncovered a multi-planetary terrorist organization, Harris.  I have no idea how you did it, but damn it, I didn't need the extra work."

"Woolsey to the caf, now, for an emergency briefing," John called, then let go of his earpiece.  "How bad, General?"

"How did I uncover the intergalactic version of Al Queda?" Xander asked.  Woolsey walked in quickly and he waved him over.

"In Kinsey's crapload of files he shouldn't have had was a good few files on people called The Trust.  It's apparently a group that wants the tech for themselves for business purposes."

"Jack, my Jack, got me away from them when they came to try to sway Gwen," Dawn told the phone.  "They wanted what Torchwood had stored too.  Jack blew him off and had him arrested for something."

"I can ask him about that, Dawn.  Thank you.  Why are you up there?"


"I talked to her Jack, he's going to chew her a new one for us," Xander told him.  "Beyond that, she's getting a lot of Daniel time in so she can be his protégé of doom."

"That's fine, kids.  I knew she'd do that someday," he sighed.  He sounded tired.  "All right, all we know right now is that some of these idiots are former NID.  Fired for being violent idiots.  There's apparently a higher council that's business people.  Xander, Dawn, Travers was part of that."

"Fuck," Xander said.  Then he ate the rest of his banana.

"Eww, him?" Dawn asked.

"Hell no!"  He swatted at her.  "Behave.  Is he down?"

"Yes.  The Brits have the Council in custody and are not happy with them.   We do have one scientist here that's trying to expose things but that's a whole different problem."  He cleared his throat.  "Then we have the gou'ald that's helping these violent idiots.  They do not play nicely.  They believe in shoring up their viewpoints by assassination.  They're all for questioning at gunpoint and with torture.  Dawn, I want you to stay safe.  Xander, they've went after Buffy once; Riley Finn heard and got her evacuated in time.  She's in their guest room at the moment."

"Okay.  I'm sure his wife isn't liking that," he said dryly.  "What can we do to help?"

"We have got to find the other members.  I know you have some strange contacts.  I've already called UNIT to warn them that they want future and alien tech.  Martha Jones said she'd call Torchwood herself.  We're on base lockdown today because of that."

"Okay," Xander agreed.  "I can call some people I know."

"General, is Tunny involved?" Rodney asked.

"No, he's not.  Another of your level of genius is but he's a minor issue wanting to out things."

"Remind him of the prime directive," Xander said dryly.  "And how people will fucking panic.  Though, they've seen other harmful aliens."

"I know.  We're going to have a small conference to talk about this issue.  I need you to attend, kid.  Since you're the source of future tech outside of Harkness."

"Gotcha," he agreed.  He looked up.  "John?"

"I can watch Dawn for you and squash any rumors about my birthday that we're not celebrating."

Xander snorted.  "Sure we're not."

"I said we're not," he told him.

Xander stared at him.  "Didn't I say that and you guys got me an ice cream cake and stuff?"

"Yeah," he sighed.  "Nothing too huge?"

"I'll see."  He looked at his phone again.  "When?"


"Be there soon," Xander promised.  He hung up and looked at them.  "Okay, apparently we need to ferret out the little bastards and make them realize how fucking dumb they are."

"Oooh, demon snot bomb?" Dawn asked him with a happy, manic grin.

Xander smirked.  "I love your filthy mind, Dawnie.  Never change."  He leaned over to kiss the tip of her nose.  "C'mon, Armand, we're going to DC to talk to Jack and General Jack."  Armand got up with a groan.  "Let me go get a few things out of the office.  Dawn, take my bed tonight."

"Yes, big brother."

"And no having anyone in it either," he said dryly.  "The only one getting some in my bed is me."

"Yes, Xander," she said, giving him a dirty look.  He smirked back.  "Whatever."

"Good."  He looked at Woolsey.  "Anything?"

"Not a thing that I've ever heard of," he admitted quietly.

"Okay, you have contacts."

"I'll send emails out tonight," he promised, walking off thinking about it.

Xander looked at Rodney.  "I'll send you guys an email with tonight's load of stuff."  That got a nod and Xander got up, heading up to his office with the dragon following him.  He got into a box that he hadn't gotten into since he had been in the eighties the second time.  Armand gave him a strange look so he smiled.  "It's cool, Armand," he said quietly.  He grabbed a few more things.  "Let's get some clothes."  Armand nosed a closed trunk.

"You're right, that is in there."  He got into it and pulled out some more things.  He touched his comm.  "Dawn, feed the plants tonight please.  They might eat the stew but they might plant puke too, not real sure."  He let it go and grabbed a backpack.  His mission backpack.  It had a lot of what he might need.  He grabbed a few more things, including his tool kit for emergencies, and hesitated over one thing then stuffed it in there too.  He looked at his dragon.  "Let me change," he promised.

He stripped off, dropping the clean clothes on his desk chair then grabbing two things from the same trunk before kicking it closed.  The pants were soft, moved with him, and were so much future tech it wasn't funny.  He kept it willed to look like black silk.  The shirt he willed the same.  He ran a hand through his hair and changed his shoes to his boots then grabbed Armand and his pack, then his other bag and left.  He landed in Jack's office.  "Okay, we're here."

"You made good time," he joked.  He looked him over.  "Fancy.  Date too?"

"Nah, favorite hunting outfit."  He put Armand into a chair, put his pack on better, and the other bag over his shoulder.  "Meeting?"

"In about two hours.  You can go find someone for some short fun if you want."

"Nah.  I have someone I need to talk to later."  That got a nod and a smirk.  "Not that way.  Though one guy did ask if Dawn was Sheppard's birthday present."

Jack burst out laughing.  "That's so evil."

"Armand and I had just broken up their fight.  When I said little sister he begged Armand to eat him."  Armand meeped, waving his tail around.  "I know, you have better taste than dumb Marines."  He sat down, looking at him.  "Do we have anything new yet?"

"No, I've called others and they have no idea either."

"How multi-planet is this?"

"Very with the gou'ald involved.  They had control of most of this galaxy before we kicked their butts."

Xander nodded.  "Good to know.  Okay, I'll talk to some of my contacts after the meeting."  Jack nodded.  "Including maybe... if I can find the bastard, Ba'al."

Jack smirked.  "You hate him."

"Yeah, I do.  But I'll let him flirt if he'll give me info.  I won't smack him around this time."

"Fine.  If you're comfy."

"I won't bare it for him but I'll let him try to talk me into it."

"Hmm.  If you're comfy.  I won't even suggest it unless it's vital, Xander."

"I know, Jack.  I like that about you."  Landry and Harkness both landed behind him.  Armand roared and leapt over to cuddle Jack.

"Hi, precious."  He petted him, getting nuzzled.  "You smell like Dawn."

"He's so protective of her," Xander assured him with a grin.  "We holding it here?"

"Martha's coming the normal way," Jack said with a smirk.

"Cool.  Let's go have lunch, Jack?"

"Sure."  He nodded at the two military guys.  Xander took his stuff and Jack kept the cuddly dragon since he wanted to snuggle him instead for a bit.

"Do we have any idea what he's up to?" Landry asked quietly.

"No," he admitted.  Jack smiled.  "But it'll hopefully be helpful."

"I can't believe we have another one."  He sat down.  "What about that other person?"

"I sent McKay a fact file on him so we can call him down to discourage the guy."

"They might be after him too," Landry said.

"He has security.  I'm going to send the kid to talk to him.  He's the best advocate we have for keeping to the prime directive as he put it."

"He is," Landry agreed.  "Get a drink too?"

"I could use a beer," Jack agreed, leading him down to the officer's club so they could have one before the meeting.


Xander looked at Jack then around the private restaurant they were in, then back at his friend.  "Okay, I need some help."


"Because I'm going to end up pulling out future skills I've never admitted to," he said quietly, glancing around.  "Rodney's going to kick my ass."

Jack smiled.  "Is that a desired outcome?"

"We have clones," he murmured.

Jack moaned.  "Why?"


"Aw, shit," he complained quietly.  Armand snuffled so he petted him again.  "On your side or against?"

"On but someone else has it and he's an enemy and possibly involved or will know."

"Great.  What do we think is going to happen?"

"I have some clone-be-gone that I'm not willing to admit that I made," he offered.  "And I have some fraquint made that might come in handy too."  Jack nodded at that.  "Though I agree, people are ready for *some* information since they all know about the stuff you helped handle."

"True.  I'm not thrilled but a careful one might help.  What else do you have?"

"If I have to, do you really think they can black ops it?" he asked.

"Your general, yeah.  O'Neill is known for it on his missions here and there."

"Yeah but he's getting older, and this is going to come down to us because the Doc is going to throw a fit if he hears."

"Yeah, he will," he admitted, sipping his water.  "That's an interesting aftertaste."

Xander sniffed then waved their waiter over.  He grinned.  "Can you please tell whoever slipped the drugs in our drinks we're immune."  He beamed.  The waiter gave him a horrified look.  "Better yet, just take me see the bastard.  Jack, can you watch that?  I'll be right back.  I know who owns this place in secret."

"Sure, have fun."  He petted the dragon.  "Bring me a good ale?"  The waiter nodded.  "Undrugged this time."  He hurried off, taking Xander to the office then getting the scary man a proper ale.

Xander strolled into the office, staring at the arrogant bastard behind the desk.  "You tried to drug us?  How dumb are you, Ba'al?"

"Xander," he said with a smirk.  "What brings you here?"

"Meeting."  He strolled over.  "I was going to come see you anyway.  Someone asked me to find some information on a new group that you've probably been watching."

"What would be in it for me?"

"Well....  I won't smack you into the ground the next time you try to flirt but I won't give in," he said dryly.  "Beyond that, they're probably in your way too."

"Which group?" he asked, looking Xander over.  "That is not normal fabric."

"No, it's not."  He smirked, sitting on the edge of the desk.  "The Trust?  It came out in some of Kinsey's crap.  If I had known his mistress had those files I would've asked for them before she went on the air."

"You....  Oh, you are so evil."

"He was in my way," he said with a grin.

"Hmm."  He stared at him.  "I do know of them but I don't think the incentive is good enough."

Xander leaned down.  "I have clone-be-gone."  Ba'al laughed.  "A nice little retrovirus that reacts to the energy signature in cloned cells."  Ba'al quit laughing.  "It got so bad that we had to make sure Mini Jack was out of the way on Atlantis."

Ba'al hissed.  "You wouldn't."

"Try me, baby.  You know I would."  He smiled.  "I can be nicer and not give what I have over."

Ba'al stretched back.  "I don't believe you.  Beyond that, I'm enjoying what my people do."

Xander hummed.  "Pity.  But good to know."  He stabbed him with the dagger that had been on his wrist.  "I'll get the clones later."  He blew a kiss as the asshole died, getting his symbiot when it tried to escape the dying body.  He called Jack.  "I got Ba'al.  Promised before he went insane and tried to entice me to join him again that I'd get his clones.  His office is a wealth of shit since he was in charge.  Club Nara."  He hung up and looked around, finding the file he needed.  Jack would need it but it wasn't a problem.  He felt comfy enough to deal with this committee thing.  It'd be a good birthday present to Sheppard since they apparently wanted his ATA gene one way or another according to the file.  Someone knocked and walked in.  He smiled at the man who was staring at the dead body.  "I'm Xander."  Ba'al had a hard-on for him so his people would know.

"Lord Xander," he said, bowing to him, not looking directly at him.  "I know Lord Ba'al talked about you often."

"Yes and it's a pity he pissed me off.  I'll transplant him into a better, prettier host."  The man nodded.  "I'm expecting guests."

"They are here."



"Show him in.  Ignore us."  He bowed again and left.  Xander smiled.  "They want to kidnap John to work for them."  He held up the file.  "I'll handle this group of morons?"

Jack took it to look over, then nodded.  "You sure?"

"Yeah and I think I know someone who was working on something that might help with his many other bodies," he said dryly.  "He told me they were his people."

"We'll raid," Jack promised.  "Go have lunch, kid.  You didn't sound too happy with dinner."

"It was toxic bunny stew.  It was gross."  He walked out with the folder, sitting down next to Jack and his dragon again.  "Ba'al really was a pain in my ass," he said.

Jack nodded.  "I've had a few of those.  Ex?"

"Not hardly.  I have taste.  Si was at least *pretty*."

Jack smirked.  "I love hearing about your ex's and how much they mope.  The Doctor said that another one moped at him about not having you anymore."

"Hmm.  Which one?"

"The one on Ilendin."

"Ah, him.  Yeah, Rodney told him off for only liking me for my ass's effect on him and for ignoring everything else I could've given him.  Told him he respected me for my mind, not my body.  He was totally shocked at the concept."

"We don't like people like you here," one of the other patrons called.

"Idiot, I'm worth more than you, I can make you fucking miserable and beg me to let you commit suicide if I want.  I'm talking to a friend.  If you don't like it, don't eavesdrop."  He turned around, bright pink.  "Ah, narrow minds."

"You could move to the apartment you're letting Dawn use," Jack pointed out.

"I told the president if he didn't quit pissing me off I was going to.  Or the one in London."

"That is a pretty place.  We borrowed it on a case recently."

"I heard.  It's cool.  How did you like the bathroom redo?"

"Ianto loved it.  He went into hedonistic glee fits."  He grinned.  "Gwen slept on the couch."

"Did you put a slipcover on it?" he asked dryly.

"She's not that bad."

"She's snarked at Dawn a lot."

"Yes she has but she's getting more used to her.  Gwen thinks she's too young."

"Dawn may be young but she's not really, not with the family and group history or with hers."

"I understand that but Rhys is making her a bit conservative recently.  She did protect Dawn when these morons showed up."

Xander nodded.  "I like that about her but someone I know sent me an email saying that they had to lock Dawn's trust away from Gwen's hacking attempt."

Jack grimaced.  "She's hopefully trying to protect it."

"I don't care.  I'm not going to be rude to her, but damn, Jack."

"She would never hurt her."  He cleared his throat.  "I'm fairly certain she overheard Dawn and Ianto talking.  She was filling him in about how she got a paper cut and something happened."  Xander winced.  "So she's not seeing her as something other than a case."

"Can you cure it?"

"I can," he promised.  "We've talked a few times."

"I noticed she was jealous of Ianto too."

He groaned.  "I'm not doing that."

"I don't blame you."  He patted him.  "He's napping on you?"

"Apparently I smell like Ianto since this is his shirt."  He grinned.  Xander grinned back.  "Anyone up there?"

"Friends.  It's nice to have friends again."

"That's a start."

"Casual friends."

"Even better.  You could still use your own version of a companion."  Xander moaned, holding his head.  "I had no idea you had those too," he said, stroking over his hair.  "Bad?"

Xander blinked at him, sipping Jack's ale.  "Yeah.  We have stupid scientists and they're going to try to turn Nila into a Tardis."  He called the phone he had left on John's desk, getting Woolsey.  "Get me McKay please.  I just has a vision about Nila."  Woolsey summoned him and it was clearly put on speaker.  "Rodney, I had a vision about Nila.  The idiot wannabe is going to be looking over crystal resonance energy."  He listened.

"Yeah, for that cause.  He's looking at it to help Nila."  He heard the babble and winced.  "No, like she'll need to be a police box, Rodney.  Soon.  And we'll be trapped on her going around like pirates since I don't know how to pilot one of those.  About when I get back.  Please stop him?  Yes, him."  He sighed, rubbing his forehead and taking another drink.  The waiter came back with their lunches and another two bottles of good ale.  "Thank you," he said.

"You are most welcome, Lord Xander, and the one responsible earlier is quite sorry already.  Let us know if you need anything else please."  He bowed and left.

Xander listened to Rodney think.  "Yeah, that guy, Rodney."  He sipped his own ale, grimacing.  "Middle ages beer, all right," he sighed.  He took another sip and then checked his food before digging in.  "Well, I'd stock food this time," he said dryly, "and finish the bathroom quicker."  He took a bite.  "Exactly.  Thanks, man."  He hung up and tossed the phone back into his laptop bag.  "I do not want to hear the fit if he sees a small city traveling that way," he said quietly.

Jack burst out laughing, shaking his head.  "I can't even imagine his face if he saw it, Xander."

"I'm thinking I'd better run and hide even if it's not my fault."

"You, me, Martha, all his remaining companions had better hide.  Oh, we would be so screwed."

"Yup and he wants to do it.  Oh, god, I'm going to be so dead if he does it anyway.  And there's no bathroom right now."

"You'll be fine.  Remember to tell him you're trying to bring it back, you did not cause the problem, and hand him the guy who did."

"Yeah, definitely!  I'm not taking that beating alone.  Or the trip to the sludge planet.  You know, if we went and got a lot of that and the crystal serum goo from that other place, we could set up a killer spa."

"You know better," Jack taunted with an evil smirk.

"You think he'd really mind?"

"Yeah, I do.  I suggested letting people have some of it for mud baths.  His reaction wasn't pretty."


"I'd say he would, yes."

"Fine."  He stuffed his mouth, watching Jack and Landry carry out files.  He waved and they got waved off so they went back to eating for now.


Xander opened the door to the meeting of this committee bullshit with a kick and strolled in looking like he owned the place.  "Gentlemen, I do believe we have forgotten something important.  I'm here to correct that."

"Why?" one sneered.

"Because I know things that can make you boys drool over the tech, but you guys forgot the prime directive.  Do not give a race technology they can't handle yet.  Including the greedy ones."  He put something down on the table.  "You completely and totally forgot that there's those of us who've fought for a while too.  Pity.  Congrats on your death day." He walked off.  Behind him the bomb went off, vaporizing the carbon life forms.  Xander shook his head, leaving a message behind.  They were that stupid and it was annoying.  He went to see the scientist who was being a pain in the ass.  He got an interview fairly quickly on name alone.  He stared at him.  "Listen, I'm who I am, and I'm the nice one."

"Going to threaten me?" he asked sarcastically.

"No, I'm here to have a logical discussion.  The Trust assholes aren't that nice and they're coming too.  So I'm also a warning.  Because they're formerly NID."

The scientist across from him shuddered.  "I've heard."

"Good.  So let's talk.  Because, I do agree with some of your points, but not all of them."

"You're from them though."  He looked confused.  "You're Harris, right?"

"Yeah, a linguist and other stuff."  He smiled.  "They didn't send me.  They were going to send General O'Neill but he's a bit busy since the Trust is partially off-worlders."  The scientist moaned, shuddering.  "Exactly.  They're going to kill you.  I'm here to talk.  Because like I said, I agree on some points."  He sat down in the chair facing the desk.  "But not all of them and I think we can work something out."

"You do?"

"I do.  And that'll leave you to negotiate with the right people."

"Who would that be?"

"You know how much and you don't know who's in charge?" he asked dryly.

"Of course I do.  Do you know what you're hogging?  There's untold medical and scientific discoveries that are being kept secret!"

"Yes, but think about what the knowledge will do to the rest of humanity," Xander said quietly.  "Yeah, I agree, they already know some about aliens.  Knowing that there are friendly ones might ease some worries and stop some cults.  But... and this is a big but, there's ones that aren't friendly and they're coming our way first."

"They are?"

"Two.  One's like crazed right wing fundies that've destroyed *hundreds* of planets for not converting."  He tossed over something.  "Their book of converted planets."  He looked through it, giving him a horrified look.  "They want this galaxy as well as their own.  They're trying really hard and we're fighting them.  Plus the project I'm on has a race of beings that think of us like cows.  We have to fight them first.  I agree, we should be slowly getting people ready.  Especially with what's happened in England," he finished dryly.  "I know some of them and they agree.  People have to be prepared.  There's more things coming on our heads every year the more we explore."

"But the discoveries could help," he told Xander.

"Not really.  The Trust started out as assholes who wanted the tech for themselves to make loads of money."

"I don't."

"And that's why we're talking instead of someone having to be louder and yelling.  Or threatening.  I agree, some of it should be let out slowly.  But remember the prime directive.  Humanity isn't ready for wormholes.  They're ready for some alternative power sources or even some of the medical discoveries, though most of those take a specific gene to operate and that's found in less than one percent of the population."

He considered that.  "I understand that worry."

"Thank you."  He stood up.  "Right now," he said, taking the book back.  "It's not the right time.  Some, yes.  Work that out when Rodney McKay shows up or O'Neill or Landry or Sam Carter.  Yeah, the people are ready for some things.  They're going to freak and it'll change humanity too much at this point in time to learn too much.  We'll go militant, we'll destroy whole wonderful civilizations because they're different.  Not to mention the fundie backlash against this new stuff.  If they don't like the internet they definitely won't like faster than light communications or weapons that can protect us."

He swallowed.  "I can agree to that point but it's time for some of it to come out."

"So talk to the people.  Bring a concrete set of ideas that humanity is ready for.  That we can handle, it'll make life better, people won't panic about."  He heard a door open behind him and looked  "Hey, Rodney."  He nodded him in.  "We've been talking about the prime directive."

Rodney smiled.  This was an interesting turn since Xander was the main 'no, it's too future tech' complainer on their base.  "It is important."

"He's right, we may not be ready for everything but some things surely.  You're a scientist.  Surely you want to expand our field and our art."

"I do," he agreed.  He put down a folder.  "Which is why some of us are going to start announcing some things in this next year."  Xander beamed.  "They got the point.  Speaking of," he said, looking at him.  "There are some people who're panicking right now."

"The higher ups know," Xander told him.  "I guess it never trickled down yet?"

"Possibly.  The general wanted to see you."

"Greatly in a few."  He looked at the guy.  "Make small steps.  We don't want a hunt for scientists or gene carriers."

"No, I agree that would be bad," he said.  He nodded at the book.  "How long?"

"We're working on it now.  We're doing everything we can to keep them somewhere else.  Maybe three years if we can't stop them."

He nodded.  "What about space defenses?"

"We are working on that," Rodney assured him.  He looked at Xander.  "What's that?"

"The Book of Conversion."

"Our copy?"

"I kinda lifted it from that fleet commander's home during that mission."

"Good, hand it over," he ordered.  He looked at the scientist.  "He's a linguist."

Xander grinned.  "Did we stop him?"

"God I hope so.  He'd beat us all if he caught the idiot doing that.  Go.  That's an order."

"Yes, Rodney."  He gave the other guy a comical look.  "He's a slavedriver," he hissed then disappeared.   He handed the book to Jack.  "Didn't I give you guys that?"

"No, what is it?"

"The Book of Conversion."

Jack smiled.  "Sweet, thank you."

"Come with me to the people who actually know?"

"Sure."  He got up and locked the book in his safe before taking Xander over there.  "Same outfit, kid?"

"Special camo material that I can't tell you about."

"Uh-huh.  Useful?"

"Damn useful.  My favorite hunting outfit."  He changed it so it looked better and grinned.  Jack moaned.  "Way too future tech."

"I guess.  Some day?"


"Fine."  He turned on the radio, making the kid relax.  This was a mess.  He wouldn't yell at the kid for it, he had understood why, but it was a huge ass mess.  Though it had solved a lot of problems.  They got to the Secret Service office and were let in to see the director based on who Jack was.  Jack smiled and shook his hand.  "Thank you for seeing us."

"Not a problem.  Is there a problem with this young man's security?"

Xander shook his head.  "No, the problem is that many people know I went to do something helpful but not legal, and the lower ones are throwing up a panic in the press because no one told them."

"That situation," he sighed.  He waved at the seats and sat in his own chair.  "We would rather that it be unsolved forever."

"I realize why," Jack said.  "But Xander is a citizen of earth and this country."

"I understand that.  I have no problem with what he did.  Especially not after I saw the things that they were doing.  That being in Club Nara?"

"Classified," Jack said.  "One of our projects is involved."

"I would've beamed him into space but I wasn't sure if someone was around," Xander muttered in his ear.  "And the others too."

Jack nodded.  "I might've done that too, kid.  So, what's the best in this situation?"

"I think in this situation, that we'd rather let it be known that they were an industrial espionage and semi-terrorist organization," he said.  "The director of the FBI agrees with me since they were."  They nodded at that.  "We will eventually put out that it was a covert operation to take out the cell that was going to bring down parts of industry and technology."

"Actually," Jack sighed.  "With the people in charge of them, they were going to use it to take over the world."  Xander squeezed his wrist.  "What?"

"Huh?"  Jack gave a pointed look at his hand.  "Sorry.  Rough briefings recently with Jon."  He removed it.

"S'okay, kid.  I know you and Jon work well together and I like that about you guys.  That's why I let you corrupt him away from hockey."  He smiled at the director.  "He's actually one of my linguists."

The director stared at them.   "I've heard some very strange rumors about your project, O'Neill."

"Still classified."

"I understand."  He wet his lips.  "How bad is it going to be?"

"Maybe three, maybe five years before it's blatant and UNIT is going to have work to do," Xander told him.


"Basically," Xander admitted.  "We're working on it though.  We've done shitloads so far."

"Thank you."  Jack grinned at him for that.  "So, do we have a plan to subtly introduce the topic before people have to panic?"

"I think England's doing a good job of it," Jack admitted.

"I've seen.  Even I panicked, gentlemen.  What can we do to protect the normal and the more important people?"

"The president already has plans in place," Jack told him.

"We do more than guard the president."

Jack nodded.  "Most of them can follow the same plan," he pointed out.

"I think the scientist dude did have a point," Xander admitted.  "We need to slowly up the level of the sciences.  Who knows where the next super geek might come from if they're allowed baseline access.  Especially if they can take stuff Sam and Rodney were doing a few years ago and then work up from there."

"I'm not against that point, Xander.  The IOA is."

"Because it keeps them in power," Xander said.  "Which we all hate because they're power hungry assholes.  That's why Woolsey isn't reporting about Nila."

"He isn't?"

"No.  He saw the point of not talking about her when John pointed out what had happened to her and all that.   He does wish she'd learn to like Sam Carter but Nila's so down on her that Dawn said she's only calling her the rude one.  She *really* likes Miko and Radek though."

"That's something we can work through later on," Jack decided.  "You've tried introductions?"

"Yeah, Sam's still seeing her as a program.  She even ignored her when she told her what she wanted to know."

"Crap.  I hate her in those moods," he sighed.

"Nila hates her period.  She keeps throwing her in the ocean."

"Good.  Any idea which base would integrate?"

Xander beamed.  "Boston."

"Shit, that's hers."

"She'll like the lab down in Antarctica better."

"There's a lab?" Jack asked bluntly.

"Yup."  He beamed.  "A full, working, with generators and all that lab.  For the weapons and theory stuff."

"She'll hate me for suggesting it."

"It's what she wants."

"True."  He considered it.  "I like Radek.  He's a good guy and he's put up with McKay for years."

"Miko's quiet but she's got steel and Rodney does treat her like he does Radek.  She's only walked off crying once that I've seen and then Rodney found himself without his passwords for a day."

"Ah, I heard about that.  Yeah, she's a little tigress."  He nodded  "I'll consider it, kid.  Will that bother you?  If Radek's there?"

"Jack, Atlantis is going to have to come back this way sometime."

"Good point.  Yeah, so we'll work on that."  He looked at the stunned director.  "That's years away."

"The other problem, beyond the ones that I deal with weekly, are like fundamentalist assholes who destroy cultures and people who don't convert and agree with them."

"Oh, crap," he muttered.

"We've been fighting them for over a year," Jack assured him, shooting the kid a glare.

"The Ori are more likely to get here first, Jack.  Even that missionary troupe."

"Good point."

"And they'd have to start with someone who had control.  I read the latest mission reports and they have been focusing on people in control to convert.  Like in the days of old, if a king or a queen converts, the whole country converts."

"True.  That's a future problem, probably at the range of two or three years."

"I want to know the *minute* they get here if they get here," he ordered.  "My successor will as well if I'm not sitting here."  Jack nodded.  "Thank you for that warning.  The other?"

"See us like cows," Xander said bluntly.  "We're tasty."

"Brain eating like on the movies?"

"Life force sucking.  Directly from you."

"Eww.  Okay.  The minute, please?"

"Gladly," Jack agreed.  "We're going to need help."  He looked at Xander.  "Since you're idea boy today.  Where are we starting with the leak of sciences?"

"The energy stuff can be dangerous but what about the chemical stuff?  The extra elements?  Say we found them in comets?  Provide proof.  Or the lower level energy stuff or even theoretical wormholes."

"I'll get McKay and Sam into a room to argue about that," Jack decided.  "Anything else you want to share?"

"Rodney has a clone-be-gone?" he said quietly.  Yeah, it was a lie.  He didn't want them to know that about him.  Rodney would scream and rant at him but oh well.

"As in...."



"I promised to use it on Ba'al."

"Please.  That's annoying the crap out of me."

"Sure.  How many more does he have?"

"Sixteen left."

"I can do that.  I also think there's a way we could seed clouds with things like 'prior-be-gone' crystals."

"I hadn't thought about that.  Below a bomb I don't usually."

"Making it rain and making them melt will make a hell of an impression on the people they're freaking out and killing."

"Yeah, it will."  He patted him on the shoulder.  "Good idea."  Xander beamed.  They smiled at the head of the Secret Service.  "Still classified."

"I realized that.  We'll help however we can, General.  We want this planet to be just as safe as you do."

"We'll work on it," Jack promised.  "We're hampered by the IOA."

"Some of which were arrested," Xander said happily.  "For being fucking Watchers."

"Language," Jack ordered.

The director stared at him.  "You know about them?"

"I backed up Buffy for three and a half years."

"Oh, damn."

Xander smirked and nodded.  "Yeah, basically."  He stood up.  "So, are you going to help the lower guys quit going on CNN?  It's freaking me out, dude."

"I'll work on making that flow more subtle, Mr. Harris."  He smiled as they left then had his panic attack.  He had no idea how to handle this stuff!


Rodney smiled at Jack as they came out of the wormhole.  "Everything fixed?"

"Mostly.  We need to slowly leak some of the science stuff."

"I've already decided what can go.  Sam likes half of it.  She hates a few of the ideas because it could prove to be dangerous if a new super genius shows up."

"They do show up in odd places," Xander pointed out.  "Hell, we had three in our school that can build fully human looking robots that're voice responsive and lifelike."

"I'm destroying your town," Jack assured him.  "Names?"

"Andrew, Jonathan, and Warren, who the last I heard was going a bit psycho.  Ask your guys, Jack."

"I will.  Then we'll be doing something to that hellhole."  Rodney beamed at him for that.  "You made clone-be-gone?"

Rodney blinked.  "I've been working on the formula for years," he said slowly.  He looked at Xander.  "I noticed a tester vial was missing from my lab."  They were *so* having a screaming fit in a few minutes.

Xander shrugged.  "I went to go pick on Ba'al."

"Ah."  He smiled at the general.  "Did it work well enough?"

"Very well.  Harkness had someone who could reproduce it quickly for us too."  He smiled.  "I'm sure you want to tell him how Dawn did."

"She and Daniel have all but camped on Nila to get the journals done."  He smiled at Armand.  "Hello, dragon."  He steamed at him.  "No, the plants are in the office."  Armand hopped off Xander's back and walked off to go check on his family.  He nodded at the exit.  "They're on Nila, General."

"Thanks, McKay.  You two have a good talk.  I don't wanna know what you and the boy are going to get into next.  Super geeks scare me."  He walked off happier.

Rodney smiled at Xander.  Who disappeared.  "That won't save you," he called, looking up.  "You can't make it to the mainland because you don't know what it looks like."  He went to find him in his office or his bedroom or on Nila.  He found him hugging Dawn and walked over to pull him off by his collar.  "What is this?"

"Advanced camo.  Don't rip it," he complained.

"I think we should have a talk about that vial."  He smiled at Dawn.  "You can have him later."  He walked Xander off by force, taking him to his office.  He never used it.  He kicked the door shut behind them and stared at the boy.  "Clone-be-gone?" he asked dryly.

"Yeah," Xander said cautiously.  "Why?"

"I don't remember working on that formula."

"Um.... really?  I'm sure you did it."

Rodney pulled him closer.  "I want to know *exactly* what you can do, Xander," he said slowly and clearly.  "Future crap and all."

"I still can't do physics or math."

"I don't care!"  He let him go so he could grab something off Radek's desk then a few other things and walked into his office, stopping Xander from sneaking out.  "Oh, no!"  He put them on his desk and pointed.  "Sit."  Xander made a whining noise.  "I don't care!  You showed other skills we didn't know!"

"I don't want anyone to know," he complained.

"I don't care!" he shouted.  "At the very least *I* will know!  How dare you try this weak minded crap on me of all people!"

Xander slumped down. "Yes, Rodney," he said quietly, looking down.

"Good!"  He opened the books and pointed.  "Do those."

Xander looked then at him.  "They're math.  You're still fighting me on geometry."

He huffed and flipped them.  "There."  Xander sighed but picked up a pencil and a notepad to do the problems he selected.  Rodney paced, watching him.  He saw what he skipped and what he apparently knew a lot of.  "Engineering, not surprising with your past in construction and the love of it."

"Chemistry's the same way," Xander muttered into his test.  "You have to build things solidly, but it's different building materials."

"Yes it is."  He paused to stare at him.  "Chemical engineering?"

"No, chemical screwing around."  He pouted.  "Please?"

"Hell no!"  Someone tapped and walked in.  "Radek, did you know that Xander was hiding skills from us?" he asked once he was in and the door was shut.

"Yes.  I've seen hints of chemistry and building theory now and then," he said blandly.  He looked at the boy.  "Blew your cover?"

"I let Rodney take credit for the clone-be-gone."

"Ah."  He kissed him on the top of the head.  "What else did you do?"

"The last time I'm going to black ops anything forever and ever?"

Radek sighed.  "You did not have to."

"Yes I did.  They wanted to violate the prime directive."

Rodney huffed at that.  "Work.  Coo later."

"Shut up."  Radek glared at him. "You're putting too much pressure.  He did not want anyone to know."

"I can't talk about it if I don't have the notes," Rodney said firmly.

"I'll give you the notes," Xander promised.  He looked at Radek.  "They're not a problem and I got Ba'al again."

"I'm proud but there is no need for you to be doing that.  You are a language person, not a SEAL."  He smiled at him.  "Be a geek for now.  Let him know what you can do because he will be impressed and not yell for a few hours," he said with a wink.  "Then we will have dinner on Nila with Dawn?"

"I'd like that."

"Good.  Finish that.  I will hear from your lips later when we talk during games."  He left, going back to check and see what everyone else was doing.  He got to be the meany of the labs since Rodney was creating hell with Xander.

"If you had warned me," Rodney said, kicking the door shut again.

"I thought Jack would've mentioned it before now."

"I'm not in the habit of taking credit for things I didn't make."

Xander shrugged.  "I don't want to admit I know it.  You guys will expect too much out of me."

Rodney sighed, sitting down.  "No, even if you test out at Nobel level of chemical genius, you're a linguist, Xander.  I don't want a reluctant person in my lab, but it would let me come to you for emergencies when my own people are stunned dumb."


"I know," Rodney admitted.  "I've seen the self esteem problems you have.  More than most people I've recognized where they came from.  You don't get to be me without interacting with people who're scared of their own brains and have been terrorized in school for years.  Half the geniuses I worked with were like you."  He stared the boy down.  "Now, finish that so I know what you can really do."  Xander sighed and pulled out his backup computer, getting into a few files to let him see them.  He sat down to read them over.  "Not very elegant but sturdy."

"It was screwing around."

"I can tell.  Whoever taught you chemistry had a good hand at it."

"The Doctor asked me to fascinate him so he couldn't build something dangerous that way."  He sighed and handed it over.  "Anything else?"

Rodney gave him an evil smirk.  "Confession."

"I'm not catholic."

"I don't care.  Every.  Little.  Thing.  Mechanical, chemical, biological, and medical if you have any."  He stared him down.  "I will not out you," he said firmly but quietly.  "Though I think you did out yourself with O'Neill since I had no clue and got ambushed with that knowledge.  I won't let anyone else know about it but I need to know what I can count on you to do when it's a crisis and everyone else is down."

"You saw...."

"I apparently missed some things," he said dryly.  Xander groaned.  "So let's go over them.  Now."

"It's in there," Xander said with a point.

Jack knocked and leaned in.  "Ask him how he created the bomb that didn't leave any signs of remains and didn't touch the furniture."  He walked off, letting the door close behind him.

"What did you use?" Rodney asked, looking bemused.

"Way too future."

Rodney held up a hand.  "I know, Xander.  I don't care!"

Xander ducked his head.  "I can't.  I'll get my ass kicked."

"Xander, I could probably figure it out on my own anyway."

"But I can't."

"I don't care," he said bluntly.  "It's not like I haven't already seen some of it."  Xander groaned.  "I can get you permission if you want."

"He'll kill me."

"Xander, you, me, Harkness, Faith, and a few others are in a rare group of being exposed to things outside our own timeline," he said impatiently.  "We, more than anyone else, can use what we have to help others."  Xander nodded, looking miserable.  "Even weapons.  I will not let it get farther than I am."  Xander stared at him.  "Really, I won't.  The math things got a bit out of my hands but no one else understood it anyway.  I'm not going to let it go but perhaps I can use the principle to make something that can help us against the wraith or Ori."

"But if I tell you and it gets out, then I'm in deep shit with the Doctor.  He'll beat my ass for that thing anyway."

Rodney stared at him.  "He knows about me.  He....  Cellphone," he snapped.  Xander gave him a clueless look but dug it out to hand over.  He looked, finding a number for someone.  "Martha Jones, Rodney McKay.  Yes I know I'm on Xander's cellphone.  No, I need to let him talk to someone who can convince him that telling me things is not going to get him into trouble.  That would be fine.  Thank you."  He waited while she used the special cellphone to call the Doctor.  It was handy he had one.  "Yes."  She connected them and he walked off to talk to him in a more private spot.   Including why and what he already knew.  He was already eons beyond most scientists and he could use the building blocks to learn his own things.  He came back and handed Xander the phone.

"Hi," Xander said, sounding tired.  He listened to the ass chewing the Doctor was giving with a wince.  "They were using future tech to try to take over the world, Doc.  Yeah, that's what I did.  The Trust."  He smiled.  "Yeah, that's what I did.  And the clone-be-gone."  He nodded.  "I'm letting Rodney....  Yeah, that's why.  Yes, him."

He grinned.  "He remembers you."  He listened.  "Exactly.  Which is what he wants me to do, Doc."   He listened to him.  "Well, I did have that one guy you wanted me to get into.  And then Jarol."  He nodded, making notes.  "That's what Rodney wants and I know he can't spread it beyond him.  Well, yeah but he's like an uncle kinda thing.  Well, I do like Radek, but that's... yeah, that's Radek."

He grinned a goofy grin.  "The other?  Oh, talked to Jack.  Evan Lorne."  He nodded.  He made another note.  "Are you sure?"  He nodded.  "That's what they're talking about.  Yeah."  He made another note.  "That's not a bad idea.  Thank you, Doc.  How's the new companion doing?"  He beamed.  "Good!  No, I'm here and so is Dawn since they tried to get near her and Gwen, Jack's coworker, convinced Willow to send her up to me.  Yup, up here.  Thanks, Doc.  I know, I'm a problem...."

He listened to his kinder, more peaceful words.  "Really?" he asked quietly.  "Thanks, Obi."  He beamed and hung up.  "You can't release this," he said with a point. "There's a super geek that can turn it into a weapon that he doesn't want to see."  Rodney nodded.  "The rest I'm allowed to tell you or Radek if I stay with him."

Rodney stared at him, smiling some.  "That's more than good enough.  Is the bomb part of that? " Xander pointed.  "The clone-be-gone?"  Xander pointed.  "Good.  When did you get this one?"

"A while back.  There was a program through the school so we could do our homework.  Willow signed me up and totally arranged everything then told me afterward because she wanted me to be connected.  Though she told me she didn't know what I'd do with it but it would hopefully help me do homework.  It embarrassed the hell out of me."

Rodney snorted.   "I'd still like to see her back on that burning pole."  He patted the boy on the head.  "Let me have those and we'll go over them later.  He liked you with Radek?"

"Jack told him and Doc said he remembered them, they were both very nice when he showed up to check on me.  But I can only do it if I'm staying with them."

"I understand why.  You did major in dangerous things."

Xander shrugged, looking tired.  "I can't teach you weapons at all.  But if I make one that's fine as long as it's used or destroyed.  I can't even let you watch me build them."

"I understand," he assured him.  "That's dangerous and could make him come kill us both."  He patted him on the head.  "Let's start on the first one."  Xander handed over a spare vial of clone-be-gone.  "What's this?"

"Anti clone."

"Shit," he said, putting it into a better sealed environment.  "It might hurt Jon."

"Has to be within ten feet."

"I'll make sure of it."  He walked it out there, finding Jon complaining.  "You can't get near this."

"Jack told me about the clone-be-gone," he said dryly.  "That it?"  Rodney nodded, letting him look at the outside of the vial.  "Now I know what it looks like so I'll let you guys go over that nasty shit.  Tell Xander we're doing team exercises tomorrow."

"I can do that."

"Good.  And Jack said he wanted to know about the stuff he's wearing.  It changes and it's like invisible cloth at times?"  He left.

He put the vial down in front of Miko, staring at her.  "It's a retrovirus against clones."

"I will keep it safe," she promised.  "It will not hurt him."

"Good."  He looked at Radek.  "C'mon.  You can help me with this strange new fabric he called camo fabric."  Radek grinned, going in there with him.

"Radek, the Doctor said I can't tell you anything about future tech really.  Not beyond this level.  He's making me go by the prime directive unless we're together for a good, long time.  I can't even teach Rodney that much."  He gave him a miserable look.  "Though he did say he liked you and you were nice.  That if I wanted to make a go of it with you that he'd celebrate you or Evan."

Radek stroked over his hair.  "He is quite right to do so.  What are you going to be showing Rodney?"  He saw the list and moaned.  "I would like to know some things."  He pointed.  "Those are in my fields."

"That one leads to weapons," Xander admitted with a grim look.

"Like the carbon destroying bomb he used the other day," Rodney told him.

"Dear God," he muttered in Czech.  He patted Xander.  "I will not pry.  I'm not like that."  The boy beamed at him.  "Though I will be working on chemistry with you if you want."

"Doc wanted me to go flirt with the guy because he was creating biological problems."

"Stupid of him.  You deserve better."  Xander beamed at him for that.  "Even if it was important.  Send Harkness.  You are too pretty to be a prize."  He stroked over his head.  "Now, off with the shirt.  I am going to confiscate this stuff so we can look it over."  He smirked.  "Then we can talk about that later, over games and movies."  Xander took off his shirt.  "Let me test it."

"In my office is a trunk of clothes that're special to me.  It came from in there and the label and info packet was in there."

"That will help.  You will show me later?"

Xander nodded.  "I can do that."

"Excellent."  He walked the shirt off, going up there to look at the trunk.  He found Faith in there moving things around.  "What are you doing?"

"I got told to put some of this stuff into the small storage area.  That it looked cluttered."

"No.  Leave Xander's office alone.  Who told you so I can make someone go scream at them?"


"Screw him," he said in Czech, making her laugh.  "All safe?"

"Of course.  I'd never hurt X ever again."

"Good.  Let me go yell at him."  She smiled.  "The plants are fine?"

"They woke up earlier to eat for D."

"Good.  What storage area?"  She opened the door and he sighed.  "No.  Pull it back out please, Faith.  That's not something he constructed.  I have no idea where it came from."  She nodded, pulling everything out with his help.  The door disappeared.  He smirked at her.  "Want to help me yell at someone?"

"Nah.  X," she called over the comm.  "The sudden door just appeared then disappeared again.  Thankfully all your stuff was out of it."  He appeared a minute later, looking around then at the spot.  He glared and fixed it.  He looked up and muttered something.  Rodney came jogging in a minute later to see what had happened.

"A suddenly appearing door?" Rodney demanded.

"Woolsey said to pick up his office's clutter and put it in there.  It only ate a pillow from a chair."

Xander grimaced and pulled out his spare blippy.  His main one was feeling a bit tired.  He accidentally brought them with him to bitch out the coven.  They decided he had passed everything and were going to leave him alone after his rant, then Radek's rant, then Faith growling at one that tried to knock her out.  Then Rodney let them have it when they tried to be mean to Xander with Radek.  Xander nearly sniffled.  He hugged Radek and got a pet back.  Faith went 'aw' and it was nice.  They left them alone and told Xander he was officially not under their training anymore but to come back if he had problems.

While they were there, Faith wandered off to look at a pretty stone garden they had against a wall.  She realized they were like Dawn's baby egg that she kept in her bra to keep it warm.  "X, is this where Armand came from?"

"Yup."  He came over to point.  "That's going to probably be the same species as Dawn's.  Those are bigger species.  And that one's like Armand's was."

Rodney came over to look, letting Radek do a grand impersonation of him.  He had coveted the dragon.  He had nearly kidnaped it a few times when it had come to cuddle him because he had been in a foul mood.  He missed his cat.  He had been very comforting when he needed to do something or sit and think.  He looked over the display, because it clearly was.  "They're all going to hatch?"

"Sometime," Xander told him.  "Most of the time, the eggs will glow to react to someone that they'd fit well with and then it'll depend on how old they are.  Some might hatch that day, some might hatch in months like Dawn's."   He looked then pointed.  "I nearly got that one.  It liked me too."

Radek looked but didn't get nearer to them.  He wasn't really the sort to nurture the sacred egg like Dawn did.  "It is pretty.  Are the lights special?"

"They're holding the eggs as eggs.  That way they don't suffer without a special person."  He turned away.  "Armand does beat a cat or a dog."

"Cats are nice," Rodney said.

"They're also particular, opinionated, and don't like me," Xander told him.

"There is that."  He looked it over again but turned away.  He wasn't magical, none of them would ever accept him.

"Um," Faith said.  "I heard a crack."

Xander looked it over, shaking his head.  "I don't see one."

"Let me move before I get a pet," Radek said.  "I'm much more used to vicarious pet ownership."

"You don't like my pet?" Xander asked him.

"I like Armand fine, but I have never wanted to own my own pet beyond raising pigeons."

Xander shrugged.  "I can understand that.  Armand was a surprise to me."

Faith backed away.  "I don't need a scared egg.  Thanks."  She stood behind Radek.  That way if something was coming it'd impress on him first.

Rodney shook his head.  Those two were strange.  Their brother/sister relationship was strange to him too.  He might never understand them.  He saw a bookcase and went to look at that.

Radek gasped when he saw the little thing.  "Xander," he said, waving him over.

Xander came back to look at it.  "Wow.  I haven't seen one of those yet."  He petted the soft nose.  It had soft, short, dark sable hair and large, tufted ears but it was the same overall shape as Armand.  Except it had wings.  "Sweetheart, I don't think you were supposed to hatch," he told it.  It sniffed at him then moved around to sniff at the other people.  She found her people and climbed up him, making him stiffen until she nuzzled the underside of his chin.  "I think it likes you."

Rodney carefully moved it with Xander's help so he could look it over.  "You're beautiful, what are you?"

"It's a crossbreed by the same people who made Armand's species."  He petted it after Rodney did.  The thing purred.  "It really does like you."

Rodney looked at it, then at the underside.  "Is it a girl?"

Xander looked under the tail, earning a hiss.  "He wanted to know if you're a girl.  Yup."  He petted her to calm her back down with her daddy.

Rodney smiled.  "I don't think I could keep her."

"Rodney, you've saved the universe," he pointed out.

"I know."  He let her snuggle into his arms and purr at him while he scratched her soft fur.  "Do you think she'll be able to fly?"

"I think so."  He scratched her ears, making her a happy cat dragon.  He looked around.  "Desmira?" he called quietly.  She came out of her rooms.  "Cat dragon?"  He pointed.

"When did that hatch?"  She hurried over to check the others.  "They're all fine.  Were they touched?"

"No," Faith said.  "I heard a crack and we all backed off fully.  She hatched and sniffled then found a human feeding slave."  Rodney glared at her for that description.

She looked then at him.  "Hmm.  Well, you're interesting."  She walked off and came back with some papers.  "Here, on the species from the people who created them."  She smiled.  "How is your egg, Xander?"

"Armand's wonderful.  Everyone loves him.  Hey, question.  Since I know that these little guys were created by the Dorsians, did they know anything about pre-human cultures?"

"Some.  Why?"

"Nila.  Furlings."

"Oh."  She nodded, finding him a few books.  "Here, but I want them back."

"I'll do that."  He smiled and kissed her on the cheek.  "No more fussing, right?"

"No, we won't."

"Good."  He gathered everyone and took them back with him.  Usually he couldn't do more than three but to the coven he could do more.  Armand leapt on him and climbed up, leaning over to sniff the new beast.  They both snuffled and that one purred, liking the daddy.  Armand nibbled her ear and snuggled his own daddy.  Xander smiled.  "Jealous?" Armand meeped and snuggled in better.  "I know.  You're not the only baby.  We'll get you used to it."  Armand purred, the new baby purred.  "So, what're we calling her?"

"I don't know yet," Rodney admitted.  He took the books and walked off with them and her.

Woolsey stomped his way.  "What are you doing?"

"Shut up!"  He walked past him and went to the lab.

Radek smiled at Xander.  "It is nice he got something to be fussy over.  Might leave us alone."  He took a quick kiss.  "Behave and come make him drool over other things."

"Maybe later."

"Hmm.  Then we'll play the new game?"

"I didn't get to pick up any," he admitted.  He looked at himself.  "You still have my shirt."

"You have no reason to hide behind a shirt, X," Faith said, walking off.  "Hi, Woolsey."

Xander looked at Woolsey as he stomped in.  "What?"

"What is that thing McKay is carrying around?"

"It hatched and decided it owned him."  He looked.  "Someone spelled you badly, dude.  Want me to remove it?"

"No!  The only one around her who can is you!"

"No, because the coven I trained with was just trying to screw with me."

"How did they get up here!"

"They're everywhere.  The planet where I had the assignment with Cam?  There were three there."  He growled and moved closer.  Xander handed Armand off and froze him then walked around him removing spells.  Lots and lots of spells.  He took the last one and unfroze him, watching him pant and look around in confusion.  "Yeah, some of the people that they trained went rogue," he said dryly.  "They don't often like me because of where I was born.  They were trying to fuck with me using you.  They can't do that now."

"You're an incredible amount of trouble."

"Yeah, well, my risks outweigh my benefit," he snapped back, making Woolsey stomp off.

"I like trouble," Radek said gently, moving closer.  "Was there anything they could have stolen when it was in there?"  Xander gave him a horrified look and dug, coming out grimacing.  "What?"

"Two spell books and a picture.  He apparently doesn't like Willow either."  He summoned them back and put them on his desk with a slam.  The person who had done it was now very sorry.  It had interrupted his spell.  Pity.  He took Armand back to cuddle him.  "Stupid sorcerer idiots," he muttered.  Radek gave him a stroke down the arm.  "It's fine, Radek.  Thank you for considering that.

"Someone always wants to bring down someone better than them."  He smiled at Evan when he walked in.  "We must make Woolsey sorry."

"I'm all for that, but why now?"

"He told him he's too much trouble."

"Bullshit," he said dryly.  He came in and smiled at Armand and Xander, giving him a gentle hug.  "You're not trouble at all.  You're fun and bring excitement."  Xander relaxed.  "Now, let's go talk about McKay's new pet before Sheppard gets back from the mainland."

"It hatched without him being near it and went right for him," Radek said.

"That's good."  He listened to the report.  "Let's go.  He's started on him."

Xander popped them down there.  "Is handy but nauseous making," Radek complained quietly.  "We walk more often?"  Xander grinned and handed off Armand.  "Yes, I will keep him."

"Those were sacred and holy gifts by a culture that predated the Ancients," Xander said as he walked over to them.  Woolsey stiffened.  "No one can predict who they will bond to, just that they do tend to bond to those who have a relationship with power flows mostly or with time lords.  Half the eggs wanted Doc the one time he saw them.  He recognized the egg I had and told me more about them than the coven had."  He stared at Woolsey.  "No, you can't get rid of her.  Even if you wanted to she's bound to him.  By her own choice.  She picked him and it's like imprinting a dragon on Pern.  I don't care what you like, or who likes it, but no, he could not have prevented it."

"He shouldn't have been there," he said firmly.

"Watch me knock you on your ass," Xander offered.  "Do not take that tone of voice with me or I'll lock your ass out of this city for good!"  Woolsey sneered.  Xander looked up.  "Atlantis?"  Her hologram appeared.  "Would you please make sure Mr. Woolsey gets to somewhere he can calm down before we both lose our temper?"

"Yes, Xander."  She bowed slightly.

"Don't do that to him!" Woolsey yelled, pointing at Xander.  "He's just a linguist!"

"There have been subroutines in my system since he left after the war to protect and honor him because he would be back," she told him simply.  Woolsey glared at her.  "According to our systems' files, he is our version of a Chosen One."  She smiled at the pet.  "Aww, a Sabra."  She scanned over it. "She is adorable.  One of us found the records and made his own.  I can release those records to you, Doctor McKay."

"Please," he agreed.  "Does she eat meat?"

"Yes.   She'll eat about what Armand does."  She smiled at Radek then at Woolsey.  "The Ancients knew Xander would be back some day and made appropriate plans.  Though they did not want him using magic on the city, I can understand why he does.  He needs his office and his bedroom.  Other than that, the city is a haven according to the mission profiles."

"Whoa!" Jack called, walking out to them.  "Problem is?"  Rodney shifted.  "Awww.  What is it?"

"A Sabra, child Jack.  A mythical creature that was created by a prior race," Atlantis told him.  "She is every bit like a furry dragon in some regards to put it simply since our files state that you prefer things that way."

"One of the sacred eggs hatched and she decided on Rodney," Xander told him.  "You can't change that.  No one can change her choice.  She's imprinted on him."

"Like a baby duck?"

"Closer to what Armand and I have."

"Okay," he agreed.  "And the problem is?"

"I took off a shitload of spells from Woolsey from the coven I trained with," Xander told him.  "He called me names then came down here to attack Rodney."

"Okay," Jack said.  "Woolsey, why are you attacking McKay over being chosen by a slightly empathic pet?"

"We don't need pets here!  They're a distraction, they're dangerous, and if something happens like another food shortage, they're in danger."

"Armand doesn't eat Marines," Xander said dryly.  "And if we run into a food shortage, I'm pretty sure at least some of us could solve it.  Maybe even by farming."  Woolsey's face went red.  "We know unclaimed places.  We could set up a farm for the city.  It's not that hard.  The botanists might even agree to it."

One of the botanists nodded.  "We'd like that.  It'd mean less gross dinners."

"That's a plan I don't see a problem with," Jack agreed.  "It'd let you guys store food for thinner times too.  I can get that cleared," Jack promised.  Woolsey glared at him.  He stared him down.  "It's practical."

"It's a distraction!  We can't be off..." he waved a hand, "farming when the wraith attack!"

"Technically, we might be able to ask the Athosians to help us with that, giving them part of it.  Like a barter and trade system," one of the social scientists said.  "They would like the extra things and the botanists can easily go over there whenever needed."  The botanist who had spoken up nodded quickly.  "Doctor McKay?"

"I would see that as a good use of time and it would mean better dinners at least half the year."  They all smiled at him.  "I do like salads now and then."  His pet shifted so he smiled at her.  "This is General Jack O'Neill," he said like Xander had taught Armand.

The sabra raised her head, sniffed a few times, then let out a bleeting noise.

Jack scratched her ears.  "You're cute.  Furry too."

"I used to have a cat," Rodney told him.

"I remember.  A huge fluffy thing that put enough fur on you to make half of Area 51 sneeze some days."  He smirked.  "Harris, no chance of stopping it?"

"No.  She wasn't supposed to be able to hatch."

"She?" Jack asked.  Xander nodded.  "Cross-breeding?"

"No clue.  So far Armand's only humped a dragon statue."

"McKay, find that out before we have baby furry dragons.  Will she fly?"

"Yes, we think so," Xander said.

"Have Sheppard help her to make sure she doesn't hurt herself.  Have him finish Lehane's and Harris's flight training too so they can use the chair better.  Woolsey, let's go talk since you're about to stroke out."  He walked him off.  When he started to complain, Jack made sure he walked off.  Maybe even a sedative was in order.

Xander looked at Rodney.  "I took everything I found off."

"Could someone do something that you wouldn't find?" Rodney asked.

"No.  Things like that leave a trace.  Unless it's chemical."  He considered it.  "There are drugs that can do that and with a suggestion planted...."

Rodney snapped his fingers at someone.  "Go take blood and search.  See if Keller can scan his brain too.  Most of those leave traces."

Xander smiled at the sabra.  Armand leapt over and curled up around his neck to coo at her too.  "She's a little, tiny one, Armand.  You used to be that young."

"Please don't," Rodney moaned.  "My mother told me the same thing about my sister."  He walked off.  "Xander, heel."  He pointed at his left.  "Radek, join him!"  He walked off shaking his head.  "And someone get me something to eat?  Traveling by blippy makes me nauseous."

"Yes, Doctor McKay," Miko said.  She pointed at one.  "Get it some light fruit and maybe some hamburger.  Armand will eat both of those."  That one ran off.  Her word was law when Rodney and Radek were missing.  She went to get some cooing time.  It was a very cute pet.  She wanted one so badly.

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