Episode Seven- Home Again, Part One- Chapter Eight

(My pardon that this wasn’t posted last Friday, but there was a death in my family and I quite simply wanted to be with my family.)

Chapter Eight

A distant rumble draws Kenmore’s attention away from Ronon. She looks in the direction she thinks it’s coming from, as though she could see through the door’s wall. There’s another explosion. Then more. Suddenly they stop. Kenmore’s head snaps back to Ronon.

“Lay down,” she begs him.

“Go get the gun and help them,” Ronon grates.

“Right now what they need is not another gun. They need both of us out of here.”

“How does that help them?”

“McKay can’t use us as bait anymore. Now lay down!”

Another explosion goes off. Ronon stares down Kenmore. Then another explosion.

“Specialist, I’m not going to let them die, but I refuse to be the stupidity that lets them down,” she snaps.

Ronon would stare her down more, longer, but his friends’ time was running out. Reluctantly he makes as deep an inhale as he possibly can and begins to inch his shoulders to his right, tipping the top half of his body over. He hisses with ever move, grimacing through the pain. Kenmore puts a hand on the side of his neck and scoots back, giving him plenty of room. His tipping becomes a steady slide faster than Kenmore would like. She slides her hand against the descending side of his body and helps him fall to the floor as gently as possible. Once on the ground, she checks his wound.

“Looks like the initial movement caused more blood to come out, but the flow’s returned to normal now. The tourniquet is working.”

Again, she looks him in the eye and puts a hand against his cheek, rubbing it kindly with her thumb. And for a moment the pain wasn’t the first thing on his mind…

“How are you doing,” she asks him.

Ronon nods his head stiffly. He wasn’t sure he liked her being like this. It’s… uncomfortable. She’s too close, too personal… too personable.

“Fine,” he grunts.

“Okay. You can’t straighten your legs at this angle because they’ll run into the shield guarding my gear, okay?”

Ronon nods at her.

“So we’ll have to move you so that you can straighten them.”

Kenmore looks at Ronon. Even her eyes said she wasn’t entirely certain about this. He nods anyway. Then takes in another inhale as deep as he can manage and begins to inch his body back and forth, moving it slowly even with Kenmore putting a hand on his back and the other against his chest helping him move. There’s another explosion. Kenmore and Ronon freeze waiting to hear a second blast… but no other blast comes.

“Why isn’t there another one,” Ronon demands anxiously through his gritted teeth.

Kenmore looks down at his face. He’s sweating profusely.

“You have enough room to lay back,” she tells him. They had to get a move on. She agreed, the silence is a bad sign.

“Go get the gun… and help them,” he has trouble ordering her even more adamantly than before. The pain… if he grits his teeth much more, they’ll break. He’s sure of it.

“Lay back.”

“Help—“

“Specialist Dex, lay back,” she stops him.

Ronon doesn’t move. He just keeps eyeing her.

“Do it,” she begs him. “You’re causing more damage if you don’t.”

Ronon doesn’t move. Kenmore leans in closer to him and lowers her voice to an urgent, entirely unneeded whisper.

“What are you trying to do? Kill yourself,” she accuses him.

“If I’m dead, then you have to go help them.”

Kenmore shoots back up, shocked, “That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard.”

Ronon eyes her. Suddenly they hear McKay yell. Kenmore looks back at the door; okay so maybe that silence before hadn’t been such a bad sign. It’s when McKay goes quiet that Kenmore returns her attention back to Ronon.

“Lay back,” Kenmore orders him urgently; she grabs his jacket collar and desperately bares down on him, “Please, please just lay back!”

Ronon doesn’t respond. Taking advantage of his situation and no longer caring about how much damage she would do to him, Kenmore shoves against Ronon’s chest. He tries to fight her. He tenses up his body in the semi-fetal position he had it in but Kenmore’s push and the excruciating pain are enough to overtax his strength. Practically screaming groans and spitting at her in both his rage and agony, Ronon’s body breaks and he collapses onto his back. Kenmore tries to check his wound again, but Ronon starts moving again, fighting her still. He was down, but he was not out.

“Stop,” Kenmore begs him.

He keeps fighting her.

“Stop. Please stop.”

Through his roars and her pleading, they can’t hear the door open. McKay walks in, walks right over to Kenmore, and viciously slams the butt of his pistol across the back of her head. Kenmore yelps. Ronon stops moving. She clenches her eyes shut and gasps as she grabs the back of her head. After a moment, she opens her eyes and glares at Ronon.

“Laugh it up Wookiee, you aught to be lovin’ this. You had to pick a fight with me now of all times. You couldn’t do it, could you? You couldn’t do what I told you to do for once? Oh no, it was so much more important to piss off the new girl!

McKay levels his gun at the back of her head. The cold of the dark gray metal piercing against the heat of the injury.

“Pick him up,” he orders her.

“I can’t.”

McKay aims his gun at Ronon’s face.

“I will kill him.”

“That’s what he wants you to do,” she tells him.

McKay aims his gun back at Kenmore.

“And do you want me to kill you?”

Kenmore looks into Ronon’s eyes, “No, I do not intend to leave my son without a mother.”

Ronon stares at her. Suddenly silent.

“Pick him up,” McKay orders again.

Kenmore grabs onto the bicep of Ronon’s left arm, reaches under his neck, and pulls him up as best she can. To her surprise Ronon shifts his body in ways to help her lift him back up to sit back against the wall.

McKay turns back to the main computer panel and puts the gun underneath his waistband behind his back. He types on the Goa’uld buttons and stares at its screens. All he sees is white noise. McKay slams his hands on the panel in frustration.

“No.”

*                      *                      *

Teyla crawls on her elbows through the ceiling duct as fast as she can. Her radio receiving the same transmission from Kenmore’s radio that Sheppard’s was. She can hear Kenmore begging Ronon.

“Lay back. Please, please just lay back!”

“Ronon,” Teyla begged under her breath.

Teyla’s been listening long enough that she’s actually started to root for Lieutenant Kenmore. She hears Ronon’s all too familiar screaming groans of agony and figures that the Lieutenant has, as Teyla has come to understand the SGC soldier, taken control of the situation in her usual way. More than likely forcing Ronon to do what she wanted him to do no matter the damage done, but Teyla had been listening to the Lieutenant give care to him. In a strange way she hears her own voice in Lieutenant Kenmore’s in those moments and can’t imagine anymore that the woman would do Ronon harm without checking the damage done. Teyla can hear rustling and Ronon starts his groaning again. She has known her comrade and friend long enough to know what it sounds like when he’s still fighting even though wounded and down. Desperation covers her face as she crawls to a junction, takes the left turn, and shortly arrives on another junction. She goes left again. Lieutenant Kenmore starts to beg Ronon, her pleas echoing the ones in Teyla’s own mind, the ones silently spread across her face…

“Stop,” Kenmore pleads with him.

Their volumes competing.

“Stop. Please stop,” the Lieutenant begs.

Teyla can feel tears threatening her eyes. She can’t bare anymore. Her whole body becomes desperate, her crawl, her breathing. Now is not the time, Ronon.

“Please Ronon,” Teyla begs on her stomach.

Not even she can hear the door in the computer room opening through the turmoil over her radio and the turmoil she hears in herself. Suddenly Kenmore yelps. There’s silence over the radio except for the Lieutenant’s gasping, although Teyla can’t really tell whether or not they are Lieutenant Kenmore’s gasps or her own. The Athosian’s desperate scramble is rewarded by another fast approach to a junction. Teyla takes the right this time.

“Laugh it up Wookiee, you aught to be lovin’ this. You had to pick a fight with me now of all times. You couldn’t do it, could you? You couldn’t do what I told you to do for once? Oh no, it was so much more important to piss off the new girl!

She can hear the frustration and anger in Kenmore’s voice that a part of Teyla feels as well. Ronon’s stubbornness had become reckless. A danger he could not see coming. Or perhaps he did? Is his hatred of the Lieutenant so overwhelming that he must act this dangerously? To himself? To them, his friends of many years?

“Pick him up,” she hears the Goa’uld inside of Rodney order.

“I can’t,” the Lieutenant tells him.

“I will kill him,” he tells her.

“That’s what he wants you to do,” the Lieutenant informs him.

Teyla could feel her blood boiling at Ronon. How could he? How could he be this reckless when the situation was already so dire? How dare he? Teyla reaches the junction General Carter had told her about before they started this plan. She urgently crawls out of the duct and stands in the middle of another laddered crawlspace: the maintenance duct. A duct stretching far up into the rest of the ship with a ladder running up one side and the rest of its round circumference dotted with holes leading into the other ceiling ducts of the other levels of the ship. She’s gasping, her heart’s pounding. She reaches for the ladder and her hands grip firmly around the rung at her eye level.

“And do you want me to kill you,” the Goa’uld asks.

Teyla freezes. Her eyes wide. Waiting.

“No,” came the Lieutenant’s voice firmly, “I do not intend to leave my son without a mother.”

Teyla’s face temporarily contorts in the painful fear she has held ever since she learned of Torren’s conception now uttered so boldly by another mother who shares the uniform Teyla wears. The tears that had previously threatened to stream down her face now threaten to pour. Eyes brimming. Gasping, Teyla pulls herself together, pulls herself up onto the ladder, and starts to climb up.

“I’m coming for you,” she whispers determindedly over and over to herself, to Kenmore, and to a little boy planets away.

She stops what must be a level up, reaches out, and crawls into the hole in the wall closest to her on her left.

“Pick him up,” the Goa’uld inside of Rodney orders again.

It was only a few feet further that Teyla comes upon the air vent in the ceiling she needed to get to. Teyla folds her body and, putting all her emotion into force, slams her feet at the grate. The metal easily gives way. Teyla slides forward and drops down into the corridor below.

*                      *                      *

Sheppard slowly stalks down a hallway. Suddenly a vent in the ceiling a few feet behind him hits the floor, Sheppard immediately turns around, P-90 at the ready, and sees Teyla drop down out of the ceiling. She looks like hell.

“Are you alright,” Sheppard lowers his gun, concerned. He really didn’t need Teyla losing it too right now.

Teyla nods her head vigorously and takes back up her own P-90 clipped to the front of her tactical vest.

“I am coming for them,” she breathes.

“Okay,” Sheppard says slowly while nodding his head, not really understanding but if she was holding it together as much as she possibly could right now with those words, then he was going to take that and run with it as fast as he possibly can and not argue with her determination.

They run up the hallway together. At the end, they meet up with Jacob Carter messing with the wiring and crystal slats of a ripped open wall panel.

“Almost there,” he tells them and gently but quickly pulls out another sapphire blue-edged clear crystal slat.

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