Jackfic Archive Story

 

The Blood - Part 8 of 'An Education'

by Gumnut

Disclaimer: Stargate SG-1 and its characters are the property of Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, and Gekko Productions. I have written this story for entertainment purposes only and no money whatsoever has exchanged hands. No copyright infringement is intended. The original characters, situations, and story are the property of the author(s).


Cassie answered the door the moment Daniel raised his hand to knock. The young girl's eyes were swollen and red from crying, and she practically flew into his arms, her hands gripping the material of his jacket as if her life depended upon it.

She was trembling.

Sam gave him a worried smile, caught by duty, and he smiled back in reassurance as she barrelled past him in search of her commanding officer, Teal'c, and an army of medics and SFs hard on her heels. Her sudden intake of breath alerted him to the fact they had discovered something. Daniel was almost reluctant to find out what.

"Cassie?"

The girl continued to cling to him, but he had to know. He pushed the swinging front door aside and waited for his eyes to adjust to the darkness within.

Sam and Teal'c huddled at the other end of the hallway, and the medics, unpacking equipment, were spouting off vital statistics. Sam had a phone to her ear and was practically yelling into it.

There was blood on the carpet.

A great deal of blood.

Oh god, what had happened here?

The General had only said that Cassie had rung and the Colonel was injured badly at Janet's home. They hadn't been able to jump into transport fast enough. Jack had been sent home on medical leave. He was supposed to be home, in bed, asleep. Why the hell was he here, and where was Janet? Cassie still in his arms, he edged down the corridor desperate to ascertain Jack's condition, but dreading the possible answer.

"Goa'uld!"

"Shit! Everyone back off!"

"Damnit, sir, we don't have time!"

The argument was suddenly halted by a yell of `CLEAR' and the horrid zap of electrical stimulation.

Oh, shit, oh, shit, oh, shit.

Teal'c stood up, suddenly wary, his zat appearing from his pocket as he mapped the hall with his eyes.

As he shifted, Daniel finally saw Jack.

He had been moved by the medics, that much was apparent from the stamp of blood on the carpet, the colours of what remained of his clothes were now a uniform dark red, stiff in places, wet in others. His chest had been bared for examination, blood- stained bandages holding him together. His feet lay awkwardly, as if his anklebones had been removed. A slip of a bandage proved that they might as well have been. Bile rose in his throat.

But it was the shallow rise and fall of his chest that caught his eye the most. He was breathing, he was alive.

Then who....?

"Cassie?" She had to snap out of it; she had to tell him what was going on. Cassie shook her head, her face white, her mouth opening as if to say something, but nothing came out.

"Damnit! CLEAR!" The thud and crackle of the heart stimulator once again raked across his nerves. "I don't care, sir, if I don't help her, she will die!"

A splash of red that wasn't blood. Janet?

"That's got it, we have a pulse. Grab the stretcher, we have to get moving, now!"

Daniel suddenly became aware of the thud-thud-thud of rotor blades above the house, moments before an Air Force chopper landed in the playground across the road. Neighbours suddenly appeared, some feigning disinterest, others blatantly sticking their noses over fences.

A gurney sped past him, a mop of red hair contrasting with pale skin drawing a desperate cry from Cassie. He held her back, letting the medics do their job.

He watched as another stretcher was hurried down the narrow hallway, and Jack lifted on to it. The unconscious man didn't stir at the sudden movement.

Sam's eyes said everything as she passed him; their moisture reflected the light in the dim hallway causing them to sparkle. She followed the stretcher out the door as if she was chained to it. Only Teal'c's voice called her back.

"MajorCarter, I believe we should secure the area."

She turned back, and Daniel could see the reluctance in her stance. She desperately needed to go with the chopper, but there was something Captain Ferguson and his SFs couldn't detect. She was needed here.

"Sam, I'll go. Cassie needs to be with her Mom. We'll go." She looked at him with both gratitude and worry mingling in her expression.

She didn't answer verbally, but her quiet nod as she turned towards Teal'c had him out the door behind Jack's gurney with an armful of Cassie.

The downdraft of idling rotor blades tossed his hair around and grabbed at his uniform. As he helped Cassie into the tightly packed cabin, the throb of the engines increased in speed, and before he was even seated, the helicopter left the ground taking his stomach with it.

**********

Jack O'Neill woke to the sound of a screaming wind and the beating of chopper blades. Air buffeted his face, flapping the sheet wrapped around his chest.

"Uncle Danny?" The voice was trembling, wavering in horror. "What have I done?"

Cassie. God.

He opened his eyes, desperately attempting to peer above the flapping material at his neck without making any obvious moves. The last he had seen of Cassie, her eyes had been glowing.

As expected by the engine noise, he was in a chopper. Medivac. The whistling wind tearing at his sheet was from a gaping hole in the side of the craft. Cassie was crouched at the far end of the cabin, one hand encased in a hand device, a look of absolute terror on her face.

Daniel stood at the other. One of the lenses of his glasses was cracked and blood ran down the side of his face from a cut above his left eye. He held up a hand.

"Cassie, take it off."

Her eyes flickered to her upheld hand, widening with sudden shock. "No, no, no." She burst into tears.

Jack quietly reached for the straps holding him to the stretcher. There was an absence of medical personnel, and his eyes tracked back to the view of the ground below through the easily man-sized hole. An ache not of his injuries thrummed in his bones.

A second soft click of plastic buckle releasing.

Daniel took a step closer to Cassie. "Cassie." His voice was strained. "I can-"

He didn't get the next word out as a single gunshot shattered the tension and slammed into the young girl spinning her around.

"NO!!"

Daniel was across the floor and collecting her into his arms before Jack managed to unclip the last restraint. He turned, his body protesting loudly, to see the co-pilot peering out from behind her seat, a gun in her shaking hand. The pilot shot an equally terrified look over his shoulder. Oh, god, Cassie. He didn't want to look, he really didn't.

"Daniel?" The archaeologist's head darted up and his horrified eyes caught Jack's.

"Jack!"

"Is she...?" He couldn't say it.

Daniel swallowed, holding her close. "Her arm, Jack, just her arm, she hit her head." His hand was wrapped firmly around the young girl's bicep, and he reached for the stash of medical supplies behind him.

Thank god. But there was still the other to consider.

"Daniel, move away from her."

"Jack-" He didn't get to finish his protest.

A hand wrapped around his throat. Jack saw Cassie look up at Daniel, a confident, slimy smile on her face not of her own making. White flickered in her eyes.

Daniel choked.

"You are exactly the fool I thought you were."

A sound from the co-pilot's seat.

Cassie's response was immediate, she didn't give any chance. Daniel was thrust away, and her hand came up.

Orange shattered the air as Jack ducked and rolled off the stretcher. The co-pilot didn't have a chance to scream as the back of her chair shattered and was forced through the front window behind her, taking her with it. Metal groaned, the tinkling of glass drummed out by the yell of the pilot as the craft suddenly fell sideways, spinning, rolling Jack across the deck.

He had a sudden view of the suburbs below through the hole where the door used to be. His hands sought purchase, his nails scrabbling on metal.

They found nothing.

**********


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