McKay and Phaze stood about ten feet from the lab entrance, just around the corner. It was McKay who had looked around a moment ago and had spied two Jaffa standing guard. “Why guard the lab?” he whispered angrily.
“Maybe they know what did this,” Phaze suggested as she moved around McKay and took a peek herself. “It’s just the two. We could easily stun them.”
“I hate this,” McKay muttered.
“I’ll get the far one,” she said as she moved slightly, getting ready to take the further step from the wall. “Count of three?”
McKay nodded to her, looking quite nervous as he gripped his Zat a little tighter. “One, Two, Three,” she counted and then stepped out from the wall to about halfway into the hallway. McKay moved up to her spot and aimed and fired. Phaze fired a split second later. Both of the Jaffa were taken off guard and they quickly crumpled to the floor.
“That wasn’t so bad,” McKay said rather surprised. But of course he spoke a moment too soon. Suddenly two more Jaffa came out of the lab to see what the noise had been. They spotted the two and quickly had their staff weapons primed and aimed at them. The first fired right at where McKay had been a moment before but he was just quick enough to duck behind the corner again. Phaze dropped to the floor as another bolt of energy sizzled over top of her head.
McKay had crouched down as he took cover and saw Phaze lying exposed in the middle of the hall. Without thinking, he reached out and grabbed her hand and pulled, sliding her along the floor to behind the corner with him even as another bolt blasted the cement from the edge of the corner.
“Thanks,” Phaze breathed as she joined McKay in a crouch.
“Don’t mention it,” he replied automatically. He reached around the corner with his Zat and fired wildly a few times. Surprisingly, from the sound of armor hitting the floor, he actually took one down.
The firing ceased for a moment and Phaze and McKay exchanged a look before she asked, “Now what?”
McKay shrugged and slowly stood up, keeping the corner between him and the remaining Jaffa. Phaze followed his example and stood beside him. “We have to do something before he calls in more help,” Phaze muttered.
“I know that,” McKay snapped. He stood against the wall, breathing heavily before he said, “Alright, I’m going to take a look.”
He poked his head around the corner and quickly ducked back. He stood there a second with Phaze staring at him. “Well?” she prompted.
“No one’s there,” he said, more than a little confused.
“You got them all?” she asked.
“No. There are still the three unconscious ones, but the other one is gone.”
“Where’d he go?”
“How should I know?”
Phaze sighed at him and stepped away from the wall. She took a look for herself and saw that McKay was right. Three Jaffa lay crumpled on the floor but there was no sign of the fourth. With a shrug she walked past McKay and headed on towards the lab, walking close to the wall with her Zat up as she went. McKay followed behind her.
When she reached the lab entrance, she carefully peered around the corner. The lab was empty. “Strange,” she said as she entered the lab and made a beeline for the device sitting on the workbench.
“He couldn’t have just disappeared,” McKay said as he followed her inside. He stopped at the threshold and turned around and looked down at the three Jaffa. He took aim at them with his Zat.
“What are you doing!?” she snapped at him as she quickly returned to his side and grabbed his arm. “Doesn’t the second shot from one of these things kill?”
“What’s it look like,” he said confused. “I’m making sure they don’t wake up and kill us while we’re working on the machine!”
“That’s murder!” she cried.
“They’re Jaffa!” he retorted as if that should make all the difference.
“You are not going to murder them, not while I’m here. That makes you no better than one of them.”
“Then what do you suggest?”
Phaze looked at them and then went to the one that was still partway in the doorway. She dragged him the short distance outside and then came back in. “Close the door. I’m sure you can come up with a way to lock it so they can’t open it from their side.”
He glared at her for a moment, but she returned his gaze. “I can. But I won’t be to do anything about them cutting through the metal.”
“That will take some time. We should have this done by then, as long as you hurry up and get that door locked!”
McKay let out an exasperated sigh but quickly went over to the door controls. The door slid shut and latched. He continued to mess with the controls for a moment before he declared that he had locked them out.
“Good, now, let’s see what can be done here,” she said, going over to look at the machine.
“My Lord Yu,” Oshu said as he bowed and then quickly turned to face the Doctor and Kenshin. “I found these two prisoners in here and was about to escort them back to their cell.”
As he spoke, four more Jaffa filed in behind Yu into the room. Yu remained silent for a moment before he said, “kill them.”
“My Lord,” Oshu said, turning back towards his master. “Did you not decide before that they may be more valuable alive?”
“No, I did not. It was you who believed so,” Yu replied. “I see no reason to keep them, kill them now or I shall have you killed along with them.”
“My Lord,” Oshu said as he bowed slowly to the Goa’uld. As he did, he charged his staff weapon. Quickly, dropping to one knee, he took aim and fired at the first of the other Jaffa beside Yu. Even as the Jaffa fell, Kenshin had drawn his sword and rushed forward. Yu, stepped back through his Jaffa and took cover behind the remaining three.
As Kenshin approached, the Jaffa closest took aim and fired at him. He dodged the first blast but as the second came, he was too close and used his sword to deflect the fireball. It seemed to reflect right off of the surface and hit harmlessly into the cement in the ceiling. Two more steps were all it took for Kenshin to engage and bring the Jaffa down.
Oshu quickly had engaged in a firefight with a third Jaffa and had drawn him away from the rest of the fight. The Doctor had rushed in behind Kenshin and had managed to get a hold of the fourth Jaffa’s staff before he was able to take aim at him with it. They were in the midst of struggling for the weapon when Yu stepped forward again. Kenshin had turned to face the Goa’uld but was caught in mid step as Yu raised his hand. He wore a Goa’uld hand device that he activated and now caught Kenshin in the beam of light that came from it.
Oshu had finally managed to bring down the other Jaffa and turned and looked as Kenshin cried out in pain. “My Lord, please stop!” Oshu called as he brought his staff to train on his god.
The Doctor was still struggling with the other Jaffa. The Jaffa had managed to get the Doctor in a strangle hold with his staff and was slowly choking the Time Lord. “Shoot him, Oshu,” the Doctor gasped. “He’ll kill…. Kenshin.”
“He’s my god!” Oshu replied as he wavered.
“And he will be…” the Doctor gasped again, forcing the staff away from his throat for a moment. “Once we put the timeline back!”
Kenshin cried out in pain again as he fell to his knees, still caught in the beam. Oshu closed his eyes and whispered, “Forgive me master,” and then fired.
Yu jerked back with the force of the blast and fell to the floor. As he fell, the Doctor finally managed to slip out of the Jaffa’s hold and wrested the staff away. He swung it and connected with the Jaffa’s head, knocking him out cold.
Oshu stood and slowly walked over to his fallen lord. As he stood over him, Yu looked up with the last of his strength. His eyes flashed as he said, “You have betrayed your god.”
“No, I am trying to save him. I will see you soon, master,” Oshu replied as the light in the Goa’uld’s eyes faded and Yu exhaled a final breath.
As Oshu said his goodbyes to Yu, the Doctor staggered over to Kenshin who was sprawled on the floor. “Kenshin,” the Doctor rasped to him as he knelt beside the samurai. Kenshin moaned slightly before struggling to sit up. “No, lay still for a moment. Those hand devices can really do a number on you,” the Doctor said as he allowed himself a sigh of relief that Kenshin was still all right.
“The headache is not too bad,” Kenshin replied as he managed to sit up. Oshu was turning towards them at this point. “Thank you,” Kenshin said as he bowed his head towards the First Prime.
“I did it so that he might live in the right timeline,” Oshu said coldly. “Now, let’s make sure that that happens.”
The Doctor agreed and stood up first, offering his hand to Kenshin. Kenshin took it and stood up quickly beside him. “What do you think may have delayed Miss Phaze and McKay?” Kenshin asked the Doctor.
“I don’t know. But let’s hope that it’s something that I’ll be able to figure out,” the Doctor said as he followed after Oshu. They quickly swept through the halls. They encountered a few Jaffa, but they just stepped aside and bowed as Oshu swept past them with the Doctor and Kenshin following behind. “Doctor,” Oshu asked as they continued to walk. “You will be able to put the timeline back, won’t you?”
“I certainly hope so,” he replied. “If things had been a little more contained with just Earth, it might not have been such a huge problem, though I would still want to put it right. But with the Goa’uld intervention, and a system lord at that, everything in this galaxy has been thrown off. Time is stretched to her breaking point and if she isn’t returned to her natural course, she could snap.”
“And what would happen then?” Oshu asked.
“The end of everything,” Kenshin replied, remembering what the Doctor had said to him earlier.
“Then we better hurry,” Oshu said and put on a little more speed.
The Doctor remembered his radio at that point and pulled it out. “Rodney? How is it going?”
They continued to walk as they waited for a reply. Finally McKay’s voice came through, “oh, just great. I can’t figure out what’s wrong with this stupid thing and we’re locked inside the lab with a bunch of Jaffa outside, cutting their way through. Things couldn’t be better!”
“Calm down Rodney. We’ll be there soon.”
In a few minutes they were standing outside the lab door where four other Jaffa were attempting to cut through the door. “Jaffa, Kree!” Oshu yelled. The Jaffa stopped what they were doing immediately and stood to face their First Prime. “Our Lord has been slain,” he announced. “Take him to the mother ship immediately and place him in the sarcophagus, I shall attend to these intruders,” he told them.
They all bowed as one and then quickly left to do as Oshu instructed. When they had gone, the Doctor took out the radio as he walked up to the door. “Rodney. It’s just us now. You can open the door.”
They waited a few moments before the door slid open. “Doctor!” Phaze cried and jumped at him, wrapping her arms around him. As he hugged her back he realized that her grip had changed more to a frightened gasp. She whispered in his ear, “There is a Jaffa behind you,”
The Doctor chuckled and gently pried her away. “Oshu here is going to help us. He sent the other Jaffa away.”
“I know it’s not the first time that I’ve seen a Jaffa change sides,” McKay said as he stepped into the doorway. “But it’s rare and I can’t say I entirely trust it. Why?” he asked
“I have not… changed sides,” Oshu said stiffly.
“It’s a long story,” the Doctor replied. “Suffice to say, he will be helping us to put things back in order and we can trust him till then. Now, what have you two accomplished so far?” The Doctor pushed past McKay and Phaze and entered the lab in a hurry.
“Unfortunately, not much,” Phaze replied as she followed after the Doctor. He was intently studying the device as McKay continued on his explanation.
“You see, what I had taken for there being no power, was actually an error in the system. I’ve been trying to figure out what went wrong but I’m beginning to wonder if maybe this thing never really worked correctly in the first place.”
“I think you might be right,” the Doctor said pulled out his sonic screwdriver and began to tinker.
“What, you can tell after only looking at it for a second?” McKay scoffed.
“Yes I can,” he said matter of factly. “Time travel and so time altering devices are literally a part of my nature. This device has the ability to alter time, but it does not have the ability to continue to monitor and hold on to the original timeline.”
“Meaning?” Phaze asked.
“It means that once the thing makes a change, it doesn’t know how to reverse it because the old timeline no longer exists,” McKay replied. “It can’t be undone.”
“Doctor?” Kenshin asked.
“No, that’s not entirely true,” the Doctor replied. “This device might not know what was supposed to happen, but my TARDIS does.”
“Your what?” McKay asked.
“His time ship,” Phaze replied and then turned back to the Doctor. “If that is where my other self is right now, I can’t go with you.”
“Yes, I know,” the Doctor answered as he fiddled around in his pockets. Not finding what he was looking for he glanced around the room and noticed a note pad with a pen sitting on top in the corner. “Ah,” he exclaimed and went over to it. “I’m afraid that we are not going to have a chance for our little chat, Phaze. But I hope that this will settle things,” he spoke while he furiously scratched something out on the note. He folded it and handed it to her. “Don’t read this until everything is back to normal, promise?” he said.
She nodded as she took it, “I promise.”
“Ok, with that settled,” he said as he whirled around to face the others again. “We need to move this device into my TARDIS.” Suddenly a blast of staff weapon fire slammed into Oshu who was standing just outside the door, looking down the opposite direction of the hallway. They all stared at the Jaffa as a look of stunned surprise crossed his face before everything went slack and he collapsed to the floor.
“Rodney! The door!” the Doctor shouted even as McKay had already reached the controls and had the door close right in the face of an oncoming Jaffa. They all heard the fire of the staff weapons hitting the door on the outside.
“Now what?” McKay said, looking at the others in the room. No one seemed to have an answer for him.