Escape

Daughter of the Gods: Escape
by Lisa Beth Darling

Chapter One

Maybe I forgot all the things I miss
Oh somehow I know there’s more to life
than this,

I said it too many times
and I still stand firm

You get what
you put in and people get what they
deserve,

still I ain’t seen mine
No I ain’t seen mine
I’ve been giving just ain’t been gettin’
I’ve been walking down that line

Only God Knows Why
Kid Rock

Thor’s ship was a lot bigger and faster than Kanan’s. All in all the people aboard spent the last weeks in hyper-space trying to catch up to Kanan’s last known position and hopefully beat them to the Dega-Bah system. Several times Daniel asked Thor and Ares just who was in the Dega-Bah system and why they wanted Calla but received no answer. Both of them were holding out on him, he could just feel it. They knew who wanted her, where they were going and why they just didn’t want to tell him.

When he wasn’t pacing around the ship Ares spent most of his time sequestered in his quarters and smoldering. Doubtlessly plotting, planning and strategizing just what he was going to do with Kanan and wondering what new and interesting ways he could come up with to torture the man to death. No big loss there. Daniel was more than willing to help Ares when it came to that.

So far away from home and lost in the blackness of space Daniel had plenty of time to wonder how his children were and if they were behaving themselves for Jack and Sam. He didn’t have to worry about that, Colleen adored her Uncle Jack and Nicholas would just about die if Sam asked him to do anything so he was sure they were all getting along just fine. Well, so long as the two of them weren’t fighting with each other that was, in that case Jack and Sam had their hands full. Daniel laughed a little to himself as he stared out into space.

All around him the stars slowed down and Daniel began to get that sick feeling in his stomach, you know the one you sometimes get when the elevator comes to a stop and your equilibrium is knocked off for a few seconds. They were coming out of hyper-space.

“Are we here?” Daniel asked as he came out of his daze and made his way over to Thor.

“No, we are not.” Thor replied. “That is the outpost where Kanan and Omar were last seen.” He pointed a thin finger at the viewing screen. “I thought you might like to question the locals while the engines cool and recharge.” Thor suggested.

“Why have we stopped?” Ares stormed out of his quarters.

Daniel relayed Thor’s suggestion to him. It was possible they could pick up some new information and they had a little time to kill. Maybe getting off the ship would do them good. Ares, Daniel and Teal’c transported to the planet below while Thor stayed behind.

A heavy rain was falling on the planet, all around merchants scrambled to pull down awnings and cover their goods. Customers were dodging for cover from the droplets they headed either into what looked like the local tavern or off on their way to wherever they were going. Teal’c gathered information in the marketplace while Ares and Daniel went into the bar.

Inside the crude tavern was dark and dingy. The aroma of stale alcohol, old smoke and old sex hung thick in the air. A long wood bar stood off to the right and to the left, were assorted tables filled with assorted ruffians and worn haggard women schlepped drinks in high-heels and skimpy outfits. A few people were playing games of chance and off in the far corner a few drunks were singing some tune that neither of them knew but it was probably well off-key. Aliens, outcasts from every conceivable race, gathered here to plot, plan, play and re-supply.

“After you.” Lord Ares said and held his hand out before him indicating that Daniel should pass first.

“Thanks.” Looking around more with his ears than his eyes Daniel tried to pick out the beings speaking English or at least a language he understood. The bartender seemed the likely choice. “Hi,” he said nervously as he sidled up to the bar. “We’re, ah, we’re looking for a friend of ours.” Daniel smiled warmly. “I was wondering if you’d seen him.”

“Maybe.” Came the rough reply.

“His name is Kanan and he’s with a man named Omar……”

The bartender snorted at Omar’s name. “That rat bastard, he was here a while back.” Someone at the bar caught his attention; he walked away from Daniel and took an order. After filling a glass with some dark liquid and handing it over the bartender returned. “Son of a bitch still owes me money.” He grumbled. “He was with a big guy, I don’t know who he was but they had a couple of honeys with ‘em.”

“A couple?” Ares asked.

“Yeah, slick little red head but she didn’t look so good. Later they came back with a brunette beauty, she looked real good.” The bartender remarked with a sly smile. “Hey, neither one of you happens to be Daniel, do ya?”

“I’m Daniel. Why?”

The bartender reached under the bar and came back with a closed fist. “This yours?” He opened it and Calla’s wedding ring lay on the bar. “The redhead left it.”

“Did she?” Daniel picked up the familiar gold band and read the inscription; To my beautiful wife with all my love, Daniel. He handed it over to Ares with a glimmer of hope rising in his chest.

“Yep,” another customer another order and then he came back. “She’s pretty slick that one.” He remarked with a heavy snort. “I saw her drop it under the table just before they took off outta here.”

Daniel put the ring in his pocket. DePeter said she looked at him as though she knew that either he or the camera were there. “You’re sure she dropped it? I mean, you know, purposefully?”

“Well, either way, it fell off’a her finger.” He looked at them with a quizzical expression. “Well, can I get you gentlemen a drink or are ya just gonna pump me for info?”

“Ah, yeah, whatever.” Daniel said shaking his head.

From behind him Ares let out a low growl. “Here.” He handed over a large coin. “Keep the drinks. Where are they going?”

The bartender thought about it for a moment while he slipped the gold into his pants pocket. “Don’t know but I heard the brunette say something about Heckie or Hickey or something like that…..”

“Hecate?” Ares asked.

“Yeah, that was it.” The bartender snapped his fingers. “Yep, Hec-a-tay.”

Doing all he could to keep his reserve Ares leaned across the bar and looked the bartender directly in the eye. “Where?”

“Heard something about Yo-em-bay.” He said nervously and took a step back from the man with the flaring nostrils and smoking eyes. “Other than that I don’t know nothin’.”

“You’ve been very helpful.” Ares dropped another gold coin on the bar. “Let’s get out of here.” He said to Daniel and started to walk to the door. “One more thing,” he turned around to the bartender. “What kind of ship are they on?”

“Didn’t see it but the brunette said it was a rust-bucket.”

Emerging out into the marketplace once more the rain began to cease and Teal’c came over to greet them. In his own travels he’d found out Kanan and Omar were on a Gesh’Tah ship which Ares seemed pleased about. He said the Gesh’Tah was poor craftsmen and their ships were slow compared to Thor’s. Other people saw the brunette woman in the marketplace but didn’t know her name. Satisfied with the information he’d gathered, Ares sent the signal and they were transported back onboard the ship.

“OK, I’ve had about enough.” Daniel told Ares as they made their way from the transport room to the control room. “I know Hecate, she’s an ancient underworld Goddess. She wants Calla? For what?” Ares wasn’t inclined to pay Daniel any mind at the moment and he just kept walking. “What is Yo-em-bay? Is that where Kanan’s taking her?” His voice began to rise as their pace quickening. “Damn it, Ares! Answer me!” Daniel reached out and was able to get his hand halfway around Ares’ bicep to turn him around. “I want to know what’s going on.”

“Yohimbe, it’s a planet.” He sneered. “In the Dega-bah system, in fact it’s the only inhabitable planet within several systems. It has no Stargate and Hecate has no ships. She was abandoned there centuries ago left to rot and be forgotten.”

“Looks she didn’t rot and she’s tired of being forgotten.”

“So she is. She believes Callestah will give her a new life and that Kanan’s ship will take her away from the planet but it’s not true. No matter what form Hecate takes she can’t leave!”

“Lord Ares?” Thor asked in a voice that was not as level as it usually was. “Something is wrong?”

“No, all is just as I feared.” Ares grumbled. “Kanan’s ship is slow. We will get to Yohimbe ahead of him and lay in wait.”

“Don’t you think we should stop him before he gets there?” Daniel huffed.

“Since I don’t know exactly where he is but I do know where he’s going I believe this is the best option.” Ares sneered. “Of course, if you have a better plan, Jackson, we’re all ears.”

“I can’t come up with a plan if I don’t know the whole story. Who is Hecate really? Who abandoned her on that planet? How does she even know about Calla and what the fuck does she plan to do with my wife?!”

“My Father abandoned her on Yohimbe, a barren planet. She is a sneaky, conniving, wicked, underhanded BITCH who deserves to rot in HELL!”

“Lord Ares,” Thor interjected thoughtfully, “perhaps you should attempt to calm yourself. You will not do Callestah any good this way.”

Ares’ upper lip curled at the little alien. “Don’t you understand? Hecate believes if takes over Callestah she can leave the planet because Callestah is Olympian. Zeus would never strand one of his own with the likes of her. Hecate may be right; maybe she can leave the planet in Callestah’s body….”

A sudden harsh light dawned in the mind of Daniel Jackson. “She’s a fucking Goa’Uld???”

“Yes, Doctor Jackson and a most powerful one at that.” Thor told him. “A Queen.”

“Hecate is going to take over my daughter’s body, she will gain all of Callestah’s knowledge and power.” Ares looked down at Daniel and smiled wickedly. “Zeus didn’t leave her a sarcophagus, I imagine she’s feeling the bite by now. She will use Callestah to heal her, as Kanan obviously did and then she will discard her like a piece of trash.” Ares railed.

“Why? Why get rid of her?” Teal’c asked.

“Because Callestah’s body won’t please Hecate.” Ares said with a smirk. “She is too small, too thin, her breasts too puny.” The smile disappeared from his face. “Hecate has always chosen female hosts that are dark haired and eyed, ones you would consider to be…. voluptuous. Red hair, white skin, green eyes, no that will not do.”

Another light dawned on the good doctor but thankfully this one wasn’t as blinding. “The brunette, she’s a second host. A permanent one.” And it’s Rowan. Was the thought which flitted through his mind but he couldn’t bring himself to give it voice. Nicky was adamant that Rowan had been the woman in Calla’s dreams and he had no reason to doubt his son. She had something to do with this of that Daniel had no doubts.

“Aren’t you the intelligent one?” Ares asked and looked across the room at the large view screen and the planets and stars flying by. “She has to be sure that Callestah’s body will allow her to leave the planet,” he turned to look at Daniel. “God help everyone if that happens. The first place she’ll head is Earth where you new Xeranium stores will be making my kind weaker and yours all the more vulnerable to her attack.”

Ares comment brought him around to a query he’d wanted to ask months ago but thought better of. “This Xeranium, it makes you weak, powerless and the Mohun planet is full of it but Calla said she felt the same way on Tiberia sometimes…..”

“Hum, yes,” Ares eyes narrowed on Daniel, “solar flares, I bet Kanan loved those nights.” He sighed. “The Tiberian sun tosses Xeranium into the planets’ atmosphere from time to time and it had the same effect on Callestah as it did on the planet.” Ares explained.

More questions he’s always wanted to ask and never did. “How many?” Daniel asked.

“How many what?”

“How many of your kind are there back on Earth?”

Ares tossed his head back and let out a small laugh. “Not just the Olympians, Jackson. ALL of us who are native to Earth will be affected. Those that remain from Maeve’s lines, those that remain from Shiva’s lines, those that remain from Ka’s lines, and Wotan’s. A few more I suppose.” The tone of his voice was mournful but the look on the good doctor’s face was priceless. “All in all, Jackson, somewhere near three thousand of us remain.”

“Are living on planet Earth?”

“Among you every day, yes some of us are.” He whispered. “Others hide in the shadows and in far away places. They’re frightened of you Mortals but there are still there. Each with their own unique powers and knowledge.”

“We had allies right under our noses.” Astonished he turned to look at Teal’c who shrugged his shoulders in return.

“Hasn’t my daughter yet chastised you for chasing after the stars?” Ares asked. “Humans always too busy trying to do something else, to be somewhere else, and to be someone else; they never see their world for what it is because they’re too busy trying to make it into something it’s not.”

A question Daniel asked earlier still remained unanswered. If Hecate had been stranded on Yohimbe for centuries; “How does she even know Calla exists?”

“I don’t know.” Ares told him. “But you can bet your buddy Omar had a hand in that as well. If I had to guess it went something like this; Omar told Hecate about Callestah and then went to retrieve her from Kanan. Omar found Kanan in rather bad condition,” Ares said thoughtfully, “A common goal or a common vendetta can bind people together. Kanan and Omar made a pact and went searching for Callestah. Kanan would be made whole again, he’d get his time to play with her—as I’m sure Omar is doing as well—then they would hand her over and collect their pay. A pay which I’m sure is considerable.” Ares looked down at the little gray alien at the controls. “Sound about right to you?”

“I’m sorry to say but yes it does.” Thor agreed. “We must stop her from leaving the planet.”

“And so,” Ares turned his eyes back to Daniel. “We will beat them there and we will wait for them. Now that you have been ‘filled in’, do you have a better plan, Jackson?”

“No.” Getting Calla back was still his primary concern and he was certain it was Ares’ concern as well. The situation did just get vastly larger. If Hecate had such a huge axe to grind and was as powerful as Thor and Ares said she was, then no, she couldn’t be allowed to leave Yohimbe.

Chapter Two

Several weeks passed by or so it seemed to Calla, she didn’t really know just how many days or weeks it had been since Kanan recaptured his manhood and took her back to his bed. In that time, however long it was, Calla did her level best to be good and cooperative and compliant—not that she had much choice with the chains holding her. Whatever Naganti Kanan wanted she gave him without question or hesitation. She tried to stay conscious of herself while she led him into the illusion she was trying to create for him and being very, very careful not to fall into the abyss. It wasn’t an easy trick but, so far, her plan appeared to be working.

On the nights when Kanan allowed her sleep in his bed—that number was increasing with each passing day–Kanan left the chains off of her. He decided that he liked to have sex with her without them more than he did with them. Kanan wasn’t a kind lover by anyone’s estimation he still bound her wrists to the bed when he felt like it. Sometimes, on those nights when she’d been very, very good he let her sleep in the bed. It was nice to lie in the warm soft bed rather than freeze on the cold floor. Of course he slept with half of his body tossed over her so that she couldn’t move or escape him while he slept. One of his legs alone must weigh 75 pounds and he’d toss it over her mid-section just below the rib cage and leave it there throughout the night. Although it was hard to breathe and getting comfortable wasn’t really an option at least the chains weren’t binding her and she could think as she lay awake in the dark listening to him snore. That was, if she weren’t so tired that she fell off to sleep beside him.

With the chains off, in short and erratic bursts her powers came back but then were gone again as soon he slapped them back on when he woke. Even if she could regain her powers what was she going to do? Teleport off the ship and into open space? Even she needed to breathe and to feed. Wait for the ship to come close enough to a suitable planet and then make the attempt to escape? Well, that was just another can of worms, wasn’t it? She could end up in a better place or she could find herself wishing for Kanan’s aid and company. Naganti Kanan had her. Chains or no chains, he had her locked up her tight and he knew it.

Over the last few weeks, Kanan had grown increasingly kind—well for Kanan—but it was all just bait and nothing more. Naganti Kanan used to love these types of ‘Chess Games’ with her; giving her a little slack, each one trying to get the other to hang themselves with it. Along with sometimes freeing of the chains at night, he allowed her to dress, to shower, gave her food on a regular basis and even allowed her walk around the ship from time to time—on his arm of course, never alone. Although he never removed the chastity belt until he was ready to take her, she no longer had to sit on her knees facing the wall when he was out of his chamber, he allowed her to roam the two room suite without him. (Nice guy, huh? Of course, the pictures of Daniel and Rowan although crinkled and slightly faded, still hung in the corner where she was once forced to sit.) Kanan said these basic things were rewards for her good behavior and if she continued to be demur and complacent he would reward her further.

Calla tried to be very, very good. Facing the reality of her situation long ago she knew she had no place to go. There was no where to run to even if she regained all of her strength and power. She couldn’t get back to Earth and Daniel wouldn’t want her anyway. She could try and get back to Ares and her children, he would always welcome her with open arms and a wide smile, but the journey was too long and arduous. By now Ares had become accustomed to her absence.

Daniel was nothing but a bitter distant memory. The only solace she took there was the fact that she had given Ares two grandchildren, two chances to keep his race alive. Calla didn’t really care if she ever saw his face again. She was here because she tried to protect him, to keep him safe, so that their children would not grow up orphans and as soon as he could, he’d taken Rowan to their bed. Well, that wasn’t anything new now was it? No. He’d taken Rowan several times while she was still on Earth living under his roof and wearing his ring. In her eyes he didn’t deserve her, Kanan was right, he was the only man in her entire life that had never lied to her and never betrayed her. That’s not to say that he was nice to her in anyway but at least he had those two things going for him. In her heart Calla hoped Ares had taken the children away from their father and that he was raising them on the island. Daniel didn’t deserve them either. In the end that was probably fine and dandy with Daniel, Calla was coming to believe more and more that she and the twins were never anything but an unwanted obligation. If Ares had let him live—which was doubtful—then Daniel was certainly living the high life with his current pump and doing it in their new house.

Fine.

Whatever.

It didn’t matter anymore.

The truth was, in the end, she was the one who had been a fool to think she could live and be wanted in Daniel’s world. He was a good man with a kind heart who had gotten himself stuck in a bad situation. That was over for him now and if he was alive then she should try and be happy that he was with someone he actually chose to be with. At least she’d saved him the obligation of charging after her once more. After all, it was her idea that Daniel and the rest should believe her dead.

Although she did her best to kill it, Calla did hold one hope for herself; the idea that one day she might see her children again. Oh, she missed them! Everyday she wondered how they were and what they were doing. If they missed her, cried for her. More than anything she wanted to still be their mother, to see them grow, to guide them, help them, love them. She missed the echoing sound of their laughter and even the way they fought with each other. As she lay with Kanan at night she would conjure up images of them in her mind and play out little scenarios; being at the park or the zoo, the arboretum, baking cookies or just laying around watching Thomas the Tank Engine. In those cold lonely hours it was exceeding difficult not to break down and cry. To just let go and weep in the dark and grieve for all that she had lost.

Everywhere she looked there was nothing for her, except in Kanan’s eyes. The Naganti had kept his word and kept the crew far away from her. Oh, well, not that far. Kanan did like to allow them to watch but he never once let them touch her and Omar had not been invited back to the Master’s chamber. Naveen, the youngest of Kanan’s Shankuk guards seemed to be the popular favorite as of late. He was invited into the chamber often to watch Kanan put it to her and take in the very wonderful and interesting things she could do. Naveen would sit in the chair beating his meat like it owned him money. Unlike Omar never once did he try to cross Kanan.

That was just fine with Kanan who seemed intent on keeping her all to himself, well, at least until they reached their destination. How much longer that would be she had no idea. She still didn’t know where they were going or why. Calla tried to ask him about it several times but the cold stare in his eyes told her to be quiet and she did. Wherever they were going and whatever his and Omar’s ultimate plan for her was, Naganti Kanan did not wish to discuss it. In fact, it didn’t seem to please him in the slightest.

The door to Kanan’s chamber slid open behind her, Calla turned expecting to see her Master coming into the room but it was Omar who stood in the doorway and then walked to her.

“You think you can turn him around, Cha’Dech? You think that if you’re good enough to him he won’t go through with our plan?” The anger in his voice was as clear as it was in his gray-silver eyes.

“Co,” she said quietly.

“Co is right.” From his pocket he produced a gold key on a long gold chain. “Look what he’s given me, Cha’Dech.” He held it up for her to see. “You know what this means?”

Yes, it meant that somewhere along the line, without knowing it or meaning it, she had displeased Naganti Kanan and in return he gave the key to the chastity belt to Omar so he could do what he wanted with her. “Hei.”

“Get over here, don’t make me come get you, you little bitch.” No, Kanan hadn’t given him the key but she didn’t know that. Last week the clasp on Kanan’s chain broke and the key had fallen off his neck right outside the door to his chamber. Omar found it, picked it up, copied it and gave it back to him. Of course he left the copy part out. Omar was tired of waiting for Kanan to return to himself and stop being smitten with the little tramp. When they started this journey and Kanan appeared to be a much older and fragile man than he did today, Kanan was all in favor of raking her over the coals and making as much money as possible in the process. It was lucky for Kanan that Omar knew someone who wanted her desperately. So desperately in fact they were willing to pay any price to get their hands on her. However, before that happened and while Kanan was busy entertaining their special visitor, Omar was going to get his own share of her and then some.

Chapter Three

Lost in his thoughts, Daniel sat near one of the large force-field ‘windows’ of the ship staring out into space as the glimmering lights shot past. None of it made any sense and he should be used to that by now. The only times things made any sense in times like this were when they were over and he could look back at the whole picture. A shadow loomed over him and Daniel, still in his daze looked up. “Hey, Teal’c.”

“You appear lost, is there something you wish to talk about?” Teal’c asked and moved to sit across from his friend.

“I don’t know.” Daniel mumbled to himself and pushed his glasses up on the bridge of his nose. “It’s just none of it makes any sense. Where did this Hecate come from and, I know what Ares said, but why does she want my wife?”

“According to Jaffa legend, Hecate was a very powerful and sinister Goa’uld Queen, she ruled many planets with forced labor camps and chambers of unspeakable terrors.”

“Well, what happened to her?”

“Our legends do not mention Zeus but it does say that a Great Force came forward to banish Hecate from the land of the Tau’ri many centuries ago. She and her guard were banished to a far away land never to be heard from again.” Teal’c finished.

“So she hasn’t been alone all these years.” Daniel wondered aloud and then quietly leaned in to tell Teal’c about Rowan’s sudden reappearance and the idea that it was she who was the second host.

“Have you told Ares of this?”

“No, I’m afraid he won’t believe me or worse yet he’ll flip his lid.” Daniel rubbed a hand across his rough cheek and let out a sigh. “The legends say anything about Hecate having a special attendant or anything?” In frustration his hands opened and closed into fists. “I mean, she’s not just Rowan.” Daniel said in almost a whisper. “It’s more than just ‘a woman scorned’. She’s got more to do with this than being my ex-mistress, I know she does. ”

“I do not believe the legends say anything like that.” Teal’c said in a thoughtful voice. “If you’re right, then this woman may have a personal grudge against you or Callestah. So who would hold such a grudge?”

“I dunno,” Daniel stretched his tired body back against the wall behind him. “We’ve pissed a lot of people off over the years.” He remarked with a sad smile. “Could be anybody I suppose.” Sad but true. “It’s obvious Hecate has a huge grudge against the Olympians, I can see why she’d want to use Calla. Then she’d have all of Calla’s knowledge and whatever’s left of her power, what better tool to go back and kick some Olympian ass with?”

“Then perhaps has allied with someone who has the same goal.”

“What are we talking about?” Ares asked as he came out of the shadows. Daniel remained silent for a long moment with his eyes locked to Ares’. Ares did not like what he saw there. “We are on the same side, Jackson.” He reminded Daniel. “If you know something spill it.”

“It’s all just conjecture…” Daniel began as he tried to find a delicate way to broach the subject of his one-time mistress with his father in-law. Ares liked things straight up and straight out; there was little sense in beating around the bush. “You remember Rowan….”

Ares growled instantly, his nostrils flared to the side and his upper lip curled.

“I see you do.” Daniel stammered. “Yeah, well……” In a very shaking voice and a body that was ready to jump out of the way at any second, Daniel filled Ares in on his theory regarding Rowan MacNeal. “So the question is do you know anyone who has as big a grudge against the Olympians as Hecate seems to have?”

“A mortal…..oh fuck it,” Ares said in disgust, “you wouldn’t know if she was mortal or not, would you?”

The thought that Rowan was Immortal was a new thought. “How would I know?”

“Well, if she were an Olympian—which I doubt—she would feel the same way in your arms as Callestah did.” Ares said sharply and waited for a reply.

“No.”

“If she were one of the others native to Earth, she might have sparkled a bit brighter.” Ares said in a dark tone.

“No.” Daniel’s lips were tight as a nasty thought crossed his mind. “But she doesn’t have to be Olympian or from one of the other Families to be Immortal, does she?”

Ares didn’t like the direction the conversation suddenly took and it showed on his face.

“Because Eros’ wife was Mortal,” Daniel prodded, “but she became Immortal.”

“Psyche is dead, I killed her myself.”

“Yeah, well, Eros thought he killed Kanan too. Ooops.”

“You don’t understand, I know she’s dead, I’ve seen her in Hades.”

“And there’s no way back?” Daniel asked quickly.

“Getting across the River Styx is difficult with Hades’ permission and he would never give it.” Ares told him flatly.

“But it is possible.” Teal’c interjected. “Psyche would have as big of a grudge against the Olympian,” he looked directly at Ares, “against you and Callestah as Hecate does.”

“You bet your ass.” Daniel said. “That’s why everyone went to so much trouble to make us all believe she was dead. They both want their revenge and both feel it’s a dish best served cold.”

“You’re both mad!” Ares roared. “Callestah would have recognized Psyche, she would have told you who Rowan really was.” He pointed at Daniel. “She certainly would have told me!”

Well now there was a good point. Daniel stood up and started pacing around with his thumb between his lips. Yes, she would have told one or both of them if she knew Rowan was Psyche. “What if she didn’t? I mean, what did Psyche look like?”

“Blonde, blue eyes, slender hips, pointed nose,” Ares said. “Not what Hecate is looking for in a host.” He reminded Daniel.

“No, she’s not.” Daniel shook his finger at Ares. “What if she didn’t cross the River Styx in her body, I mean she couldn’t right? You are using her skeleton as a foot stool.”

“What are you getting at?” Teal’c asked.

“What if just her soul crossed the river? What if she took over someone else’s body?”

“Callestah would not recognize her it would be the perfect disguise. Psyche could torment her all she wanted and Callestah would never be the wiser.” Teal’c returned.

“That’s what she did!” Daniel said excitedly as he thought about all the phone calls Rowan made to the house when he was seeing her the first time and the way she’d tormented Calla after he broke it off with her the last time. The damn woman would call at all hours and just blurt out things he’d done in with bed with her, some of them were true and some of them weren’t. He’d intercepted a few letters Rowan had written to Calla they were hateful and filled with lies. “It’s her. I’m telling you, Rowan is Psyche.” He looked up at Ares. “Who else would have that kind of ax to grind with you? Not to mention against Calla?” Daniel rubbed his hands together in frustration. “Who else would have known about Hephaestus’s chains and told Hecate or Omar or the fuck ever? Who the hell else would have known where to find them?”

Ares stroked the beard at his chin. “Tell me something, Jackson. If what you say turns out to be true,” The God of War looked down the bridge of his nose at Daniel. “How does it feel to fuck the woman who cursed your wife and made her life a living hell?”

Daniel lunged at Ares without thinking. Teal’cs strong arms held him back. “This will accomplish nothing.”

“Talk about betrayal, Jackson.” Ares sneered. “Do you think she’ll ever forgive you for that? I mean fucking the bitch is one thing but there was all that aftermath.”

Daniel squirmed and jumped in Teal’c hold. “Let me go! Teal’c!”

“Yes, please by all means, let him go!” Ares said to Teal’c but Teal’c did not comply. “You’re good at betraying her, aren’t you?” Ares asked. “You even let your own brother have his way with her…while he was in YOUR body.” Ares shook his head. “You’re unfaithful. You’re a coward! You’re absent from her life more than you are in it! You can’t protect her even when the enemy is within you.” He snarled. “You can’t even recognize them when they’re surrounding you. Yet, she forgives you. Somehow she either finds the strength to go forward with you or….” His voice dropped low….”or she just tells herself it doesn’t matter, pushes it down and debases herself to the level of mortal housewife just to stay at your side.” Ares raised a knowing eyebrow while he stroked his chin, shook his head and smiled. “But when she finds out Rowan’s true identity it’s over you’ve lost her.” Ares turned and walked away.

“She won’t come to you!” Daniel shouted after him. “I won’t lose her!”

“Yes, she will.” Ares called back as he disappeared around the corner. “She’ll never forgive you for this, Jackson.”

Chapter Four

“Kanan, for gods’ sake! How much longer do you intend to keep me locked up in this room?” Rowan bitched. “I’m going stir crazy.”

“You roam the ship freely.” He reminded her. “Just so long as you don’t cross her path, I don’t care where you go. The ship is small I can’t help that.”

“Yes, well I think it’s about time she knows I’m here.” Rowan huffed and sat down on the bed. She batted her big dark eyes at the big dark man. “Really this could be much more entertaining for both of us.” Rowan invited and patted the mattress beside her. “Besides, you did promise me I could have a little fun with her before we reached Yohimbe and we’re almost there.”

“I’ll give you something to help you pass the time.” He smiled and pushed her down on the bed.

Rowan let him lay her down but stopped him soon after. “Promise me.” She said with stern eyes. “I’ve waited a long time for this.”

“And you will not be disappointed.” Kanan told her and slid his hand up her dress. “Neither will I.”

Passing by in the corridor outside, Steffen Omar hear Kanan’s voice coming from Rowan’s quarters and stopped to press his ear to the door. It seemed like they were just about to become heavily engaged good for them. Good for him too. Yes, now that Kanan’s dick was working again it seemed he couldn’t stop using it. With a light step he made his way to Kanan’s chamber where the little Cha’Dech was all alone.

Not for long.

Kanan was very gracious at sharing the Rowan woman and she was a decent fuck but Omar much preferred Callestah over Rowan and Kanan still wasn’t sharing on that one. But trained and conditioned as well as she was Omar was certain the little whore believed him when he came to her and said Kanan gave him permission. Doubly certain she hadn’t mentioned any of their encounters to her Master.

“Um, no, not again.” Calla shook her head swiftly from side to side and tried to hold her hands out in front of her but the chains were too short. “Omar go away, leave me alone.”

Dangling the gold key in front of her eyes Omar told her to get down on her knees but she didn’t want to comply. Kanan must be leaving those chains off her most often than he thought, she seemed to have a bit of freewill. Omar reached out with an aged hand, yanked harshly on the gold chains and Calla crashed to her knees before him. “Do it!”

Calla’s mouth clamped shut and she tried with all her might to pull away from him. A flowing sea of auburn floated around her as she shook her head from side to side. This was the seventh time he’d come to her when Kanan was away. Omar’s touch had always made her skin crawl the way those silvery-gray eyes stared at her without any pupils, without any soul behind them.

“Got a little spirit today.” Omar said through clenched teeth. “I’ll have to talk to him about that. I’m sure Kanan will not be pleased with you.” He threatened and pulled her closer to his crotch. “Do it!” Still she continued to resist. Omar brought an open palm down on the side of her head with a loud crack. Calla fell backwards and he dragged her to the bed by the gold chains. Old but still able, Omar reached down and lifted her from the ground. He tossed her feathery body onto the mattress. “I bet you don’t tell him ‘no’, do you?”

“Please just go away.” She begged quietly.

“Co.” Omar pulled up her black velvet dress and unlocked the heavy metal belt around her waist. Calla kicked at him but it only made him angrier, he shoved her leg down to the bed and knelt upon the inner portion of her knees. Kanan, good old Kanan, he kept two strands of rope tied to the bedposts at the head of the bed. Omar reached up and pulled them out from behind the headboard to reveal the ends already made into slip-knots. Carefully he looped them around her already bound wrists securing her below him. Slowly he took down the gray silk pants around his waist and freed his aged cock from its prison. Her thighs spread wide under him Omar saw the tender flesh surrounding the entrance he was seeking. The skin there was tattered and torn. It looked like someone had been fucking her with a jackhammer. Her inner thighs were covered with bruises and knife marks. “Look at you whore,” he whispered, “how can you buck against my entrance? Everyone on this ship has had you.” Omar reached down into his pocket while he took his slacks the rest of the way off. “I almost forgot,” he said lightly, “I brought my favorite tool.”

“Co!” She cried out in a sorrowful moan. “Please don’t.” No matter how much begged or beseeched it would do her no good. The silver ball was dancing in Omar’s hand now he was bringing it to her, pushing it inside her. Calla let out a small rush of air as it went in. The ball was about the size of your average ping-pong ball it was made of a heavy silver metal and it was always cold when he put it in her. Two fingers rudely shoved it all the way into her, Calla’s back arched below him and she looked away trying to detach from what was coming.

“You be good now,” Omar warned and followed the silver ball inside her. “Come on you little bitch, fuck me.” He demanded from above her. Without passion and desire her hips rose to greet him. “Come on more, don’t be afraid.” Omar encouraged with those unholy eyes leering down at her.

She could either let it happen or force him to use the little remote control device which went with the little silver ball currently banging up against her cervix. Calla tried to relax but she knew that when she did the ball would activate and while Omar loved the electrical shock and vibration it produced, Calla was not so enamored with it. “Don’t…..”

Omar’s thumb pushed down on his favorite little button. The force of the electric shock sent Calla’s body arcing off the bed as it ran through her making her nipples hard and rattling her teeth. Bound hands fought against its bite pulling down on the knots and cinching her in place while the gold around her neck and wrists echoed it endlessly. His old cock grew harder and he thrust it faster. He eased up on the button and soon she was falling back to the sheets. “Fuck me.” Omar demanded again. She had been dry before but she was wet now, the jolt had seen to that and he slid in and out of her with zealous maneuvers. Her juice activated the device sending small electrical shocks through her and over him in heated waves. “I want to put it in your ass.” He whispered.

Calla’s eyes flew open and she bucked under him just as he wanted. Omar zapped her again. “Yeah, that’s what I want to do, shove it in your ass.” The more he talked the more she became afraid the more she became afraid the harder she struggled to get away from him. The more she struggled the more voltage the little ball put out until her little body was twisting and contorting below him on the mattress like some circus freak. “Then, after it gets up there good and tight, I’m gonna ram my cock up there after it.”

“N-n-no,” Calla pled in a hushed voice while Omar ravaged her and the ball savagely sent it out shock waves. His cock was growing harder and longer, the ball wasn’t just pushing up against her cervix any longer it was trying to bust right through it as it zapped her. The wounds inside her would never heal so long as he kept doing this to her.

Omar was too old to be able to make good on his threat. He couldn’t hold out any longer and with two final jolts from the ball he came inside her.

When he finished with her, Omar unbound her hands and dropped the ropes behind the headboard. He slipped the metal belt back on her and pulled her dress down. After that he just left, no words no glance back, nothing but the swooshing sound of the door as it slid open and then shut.

Not long after, sated and satisfied, Kanan strolled into his chamber to find his prized Cha’Dech sitting on her knees in the corner facing the wall and the pictures of Daniel and Rowan. Her dress was slightly askew and her hair was messy. Since she’d learned how to use the brush again she’d been very conscious of combing her hair once more. “Come to me.” Kanan settled himself in one of the winged chairs. Calla looked over her shoulder at him briefly and then lowered her head as she rose. Crossing the room slowly without a sound she settled on the floor at his feet as he always wanted her to do and rested her heavy tired head against his knee. “What troubles you?”

“Nothing, My Lord.” Was her faint reply. “What may I do for you?”

Naganti Kanan reached down a large dark hand and turned her face to look at him. “Don’t lie to me,” he warned, “I know you better than that. What are you plotting?” His dark hand pushed the hair away from her face to reveal a bruise about the size and shape of a hand. It had been a few days, a week even perhaps, since he struck her and the bruises she bore were all old and fading this one was not.

“Nothing, My Lord.” Now her tone was no longer faint but quivered with surprise. “I would not plot against you.” She began to shake. Is that why Kanan sent Omar, because he thought she was plotting against him? “I only want to please you.” Reaching up with tentative fingers she looped her hand into his. “You know this, don’t you My Lord?”

“Callestah, I want you to tell me what is going on right now.” Kanan demanded. “Who’s been at you?”

Callestah? Had he called her by her NAME? That certainly couldn’t be right. “I have tried to be good and to serve you well…..” her voice trailed off for a moment while she searched for the right words.

“Hei,” he agreed with suspicion.

With just her eyes she looked up at her Master from her place on the floor at his feet. “Why do you send Omar to me?”

Kanan stood up and in the process knocked her to ground without meaning to. “Omar! Omar was here?”

“Hei,” Understanding that this was news to her Master, Calla rose to stand next to him. From the look on Kanan’s face it was clear that Omar did not have permission to come to her, he had lied. “He had your key.” She pointed to the gold hanging around his ebony neck. “Omar said you sent him to me.”

“And you took him?”

“He had your key!” She cried.

“We’ll see about that.” Kanan huffed and grabbed by the upper arm. He dragged her out of the room down the small corridor and to Omar’s quarters.

Omar was surprised to see Kanan standing there like a Brahma Bull ready to explode. “Did you do it?” He was demanding to know.

“Kanan, I can explain…” Omar stuttered. “She tempted me; she’s plotting against you and wanted to use me.” Omar pointed sheepishly to himself. “I would never go along with such a wicked plot but, she is very tempting…”

“I did not!” Calla cried and looked up at Kanan with frightened eyes. “All I have done My Lord, all I have endured, it is all for you. I would never take another man, not one you did not send to me!” She dropped to her knees at his feet.

“Little bitch,” Omar muttered.

“She tells me you have a key.”

“I do not,” Omar protested in what tried to sound like an honest voice. “She does.”

“No!” Calla cried out. “I have no key! It’s in his pocket!”

Above her Kanan let out a loud growl. “Empty your pockets, Omar.”

“Kanan, really. Are you going to take the word of that little slut over mine?”

“Yes! Now empty your pockets!”

The older man did as requested, he turned his pockets inside out to show he had nothing. Nothing but the key he palmed while turning his pockets out. “See? Nothing.”

“My Lord!” Calla cried out. “My Master! Please believe me; I would never betray you so!” She buried her head at Kanan’s feet. “Please he lied to me, I don’t want him, and I never did.” Knowing the punishment waiting for her if Kanan should believe Omar, Calla began to weep.

“Open your hand,” Kanan commanded through tight lips.

“Oh, really, Kanan please…” Omar tried to toss off Kanan’s request. “The little bitch has got you wound up, that’s all.”

“Maen! Byan!” Kanan fumed back. “Open them!”

No choice left to him but to fess up, Omar turned his hands upward and opened them. In the right palm was a gold key on a gold chain.

“Hasho, Naganti Kanan, ginan cohenza fratril gin!” (I told you, Master Kanan, I would never betray you.)

“Go back to my chamber, Cha’Dech.” Kanan kicked her away from his feet. “Maen!”

Calla scrambled away without looking back.

“You rotten bastard,” Kanan spat as he walked forward. “You just couldn’t wait, could you? You just had to have her.”

“Now, Kanan, I can explain….”

“Explain to God.” Naganti Kanan drew a blade from his belt. “Maybe He’ll even believe you.”

“Kanan! She’s a goddamn whore!” Omar yelled as he held his hands out in front of him, the key fell away from his grasp. “Please, I swear to you she begged me for it!”

“I don’t believe you.” With a forceful shove Kanan planted the knife in Omar’s aging heart. “You put your wrinkled old cock inside of her,” he said as he watched the life drain out of the older man’s body. “That pathetic tool of yours. I hope you got it good, Omar, obviously it’s your last.”

Disbelief was plain on the older man’s face. “Kanan, surely, you can’t believe her.” He muttered though the agony. “We have a deal….Hecate….”

“Had a deal.” Naganti Kanan corrected the dying man. “I think I might keep her.” Omar sank to his knees with the blade in his chest. Kanan brought a big boot up to Omar’s shoulder and kicked the older man back against the wall while he held onto the hilt of the blade. Omar slumped against the floor with his head resting on the wall blood oozing and spurting from his ceasing heart.

“The woman…..” Omar muttered almost incoherently and reached to clasp his wrinkled hands to his wrinkled chest.

“I might keep her too.” Kanan whispered. “Die well old man. You should have known better than to cross me.” Kanan turned on his heels and walked out of the chamber.

Naveen, Kanan’s youngest crew member, was walking down the corridor when Kanan exited Omar’s chamber. “Clean that up.” Kanan ordered and pointed inside. “Get it out of my sight and off my ship.”

“Hei, Naganti Kanan.” Naveen replied as he looked inside to see Kanan’s partner dead on the floor. As his Master commanded, Naveen hoisted Omar’s dead body from the floor of the room and carried it down to the airlock. Naveen closed the inner door, opened the outer one and off Omar floated into the dark emptiness of space. Going back to the door to clean up the blood on the floor Naveen noticed a gold key on a gold chain lying where Omar’s body had been. He picked it up and put it in his pocket.

Ropes of course black hair flew behind him as Kanan sprinted down the corridor to his own chamber where Calla, full of fear but trying to be brave, waited for him. The fresh kill left his adrenaline pumping sending the rich red blood coursing through his waves in heated streams.

“Naganti Kanan,” she whispered seeing the look on his face and the blood on his hands, “ najate gin.” (don’t hurt me.)

The look in his eye and the purpose in his stride struck fear in her heart. “Naganti Kanan, gin waytak.” (Master Kanan, I will be good.) “Gin byan.” (I won’t argue.)

“You’d better not. And you’d better not be lying to me! Omar’s dead. I killed him for you.” Kanan grabbed the back of her head and brought her mouth forward. “Pleasure me.” He ordered. “Maen!” Calla remained on her knees while he stood, her lips wrapped around him and she began sucking him off. Omar was dead. That rat bastard didn’t deserve to live as long as he’d had! No big loss there. Kanan pushed deeper into her mouth. What to do with her now? He could keep her or collect the reward and not split it with anyone. Rid himself of the Cha’Dech and the visitor with no one any the wiser, hell he’d even emerged from it with change in his pocket. Sounded like a plan to him.

Except Calla’s tongue was dancing around and working it’s magick on him now. Giving that up wouldn’t be much fun, not at any price. What to do? A soft but chilly hand cupped his balls while the other embraced his shaft and began to pump.

Looking up at Kanan whose eyes were closed she saw the blood on his hands and on his shirt. Omar was dead. Kanan believed her and why shouldn’t he? She was telling the truth. One down, eight more to go. Omar was the most important one after Kanan and Calla hadn’t had to do anything to bring about his end, no his greed and his lust had done that for him. All she had to do was sit back and let it happen. As she let Kanan’s cock slide down her throat without gagging on it. Maybe now she had a better chance to get out of here. Calla put more gusto in to pleasing the man over her. Course pubic hair rubbed against her nose and Calla caught the scent of something darkly familiar.

A woman.

Other than her, was aboard this ship. Kanan had her hidden somewhere. Other than the musky female scent she knew that particular aroma from the one she had once called her husband.

Rowan was here and Kanan, like Daniel on so many occasions, was fresh from her bed.

Lions and Tigers and Bears…Oh My! Do the surprises never stop? Is Daniel here as well? Is that how Kanan got the photographs?

The troubles of Kanan’s day were fading away from him now, his knees were bending deeply and he seemed to be losing his sense of—well—‘togetherness’ as he sank down trying to fight giving in completely to the pleasure he’d demanded of her. Calla’s mouth left his hard shaft but only for an instant while she turned herself around on the floor below him. This way she could pump his shaft and lap her tongue around the entrance to his ass. Kanan liked that. All men did she supposed but Calla hated it and she’d never once done it for Daniel. If he’d asked her to that would have been different, of course she would have done it, but he never did. Her tongue ranged that sensitive area between his asshole, down over his balls and up the shaft of his hard ebony cock to the tip and then back again until Kanan thought he was going to lose his mind. Higher and higher she brought him while she held back the ultimate release, dancing it in front of his eyes and then dragging it slowly away, making him want more.

Calla finally stopped playing with it and sank her index finger in his greased ass as her mouth gobbled down his entire shaft. Her tonsils banging against the back of her throat and breathing and swallowing normally as best she could to extend the gag reflex, her lips clamped down around him. Her tongue danced and her mouth sucked.

Kanan shoved her head into his lower belly as his knees tried to give out from under him. The force of his thrusts rattled her teeth and made her jaw ache as pulsating throbbing cock he dumped a hot salted load of cum into her.

“You’ve always been so fucking good at that.” Kanan said breathlessly above her. Ever since he got his dick back in working order it seemed he just couldn’t stop using it. Rowan wasn’t anywhere near as good of a lover as Callestah but she’d do in a pinch, he could understand what Daniel saw in the dark haired beauty but he’d cast Callestah aside in favor of Rowan and that was beyond Kanan’s comprehension.

“I am glad I am able to please you, My Lord.” Calla said in a soft demur tone and wiped the remainder of him from her lips with the tip of her tongue. “Is there anything else I may do?”

“I’m sure I can think of something.” Kanan brought her to her feet and covered the sapphires on the chains releasing her from their hold for the night. “You desire to keep yourself only for me?”

“Hei.”

“Then I want everyone to know it.” Kanan lead her out of the chamber and to the bridge of the ship where four Shankuk guards were busy running the controls keeping them flying through space. Kanan and his seven guards were the last of the Shankuk tribe. There might be a few still scattered in the hillsides of Tiberia but these were the only ones he’d found before Omar came, the only men who stood by him through his troubles and strife. “Jadge nangonan!” (My people!) Kanan bellowed. “Steffen Omar answaz!” (Steffen Omar is dead!) “Gin answaz ch’tok!” (I killed the bastard!) Kanan tossed Calla into the Captain’s chair and pointed at her. “Kedesi gin!” (This is mine!) “ B’ok tar hesta Cha’Dech?” (Does anyone want to challenge me for her?)

“Co!” Was the unanimous reply from the four brawny mahogany skinned men. A few months ago one or two of them might have taken Kanan up on his challenge but not now that he was whole and strong again. They all remembered her when she was still in the Master’s Court. She was nothing but trouble then and she’d be nothing but trouble now, although on the occasion Kanan invited one or two to his bedroom, if he had asked them, they would not have refused.

Grabbing her by the shoulders and roughly turning her around to face the opposite way in the Captain’s chair Kanan made his declaration one more time. “Kedesi gin!” Calla knew what was coming and braced herself for it. She grabbed the back of the chair with both arms as she felt him hike up the back of her dress. Though she was still aching and bleeding from Omar and his little electrical toy, behind her Kanan pushed her further into the chair and he entered her in one cruel stroke while the crew looked on.

Naveen and the others watched intently as their Lord put it to his little redheaded whore. Only Naveen could see her face from where he stood. She looked up at him only for a moment, her eyes begged relief, freedom, and any type of release would do for her now. He wrapped his fist around the gold key in his pocket. He wouldn’t challenge Kanan for her but if he got his opportunity he might just take it.

**

Later that night Kanan made her sleep in the corner with the chains firmly around her while he tossed and turned in the big comfortable bed. All night long he tossed and snorted and tossed some more. Omar was dead by his hand and they had a long, prosperous and sordid history. His jealousy over her made him kill Omar. Kanan’s plan was rapidly going down hill and he didn’t know what to do next. Should he keep going and collect the reward? The crew deserved their cut and so did he. With Omar dead his options opened and he could take her back to Tiberia and the Rowan woman too. Ah, the beginnings of a new harem. That sounded about right to him. But still…..

Perhaps Omar was right and he was becoming smitten with the little bitch. She was most agreeable when she wanted something and what she wanted was freedom. Her agreeability made it difficult to abuse her and keep his head straight.

What to do? What to do? He wondered as he tossed and turned.

Calla closed her eyes and pretended to sleep when she saw him turn towards her hoping he would leave her alone for the rest of the night. There had to be some way off this ship and if she didn’t find it soon she never would. Wherever they were going she couldn’t allow them to make it to their final destination, she had to escape before that. Omar was dead and that left her a little breathing space. Of course the really good indications there were that not only did Kanan believe her but was willing to go to great lengths to keep her. Maybe he wouldn’t be so anxious to turn her over to whomever after all. And Rowan. What was she doing here? When did Kanan plan on dropping that little bomb? Through the force-field windows the star light shone in and lit up the pictures on the wall in front of her. Daniel certainly looked happy kissing her good-bye in the morning light. It was the photograph of Daniel alone on the porch, cup of coffee in hand and staring off into the distance that she kept coming back to. He didn’t look so happy there, he looked lost and confused. She wondered what order the photographs had been taken in, if he had that particular expression before or after she left. If taken after then maybe his sadness was only because he missed his lover already.

Calla didn’t want to miss him anymore. She didn’t want to hurt over him anymore. She didn’t want to love Daniel anymore. With a mournful sigh she told herself that it was no matter how easily he’d forgotten about her. No, no matter at all because he’d never loved her anyway.

Calla turned away from the pictures. Maybe Rowan was here simply to be sure that Calla got where they were going and never returned to upset her life with Daniel. Yeah, that was probably what he wanted but he was just too cowardly to do it himself.

Chapter Five

Somewhere around what we think of as five am the alarms in Kanan’s ship began going off and roused from his unrestful sleep. Tossing off the blankets he was hit by the cold in his chambers and realized he could see his own breath. Naganti Kanan liked the chill but this was a little too much. He grabbed for a long robe and threw it on before getting Calla out of her corner. “Light!” He demanded from the computer. Looking down her eyes were closed and her lips were blue. Through the intercom Naveen was calling for him to come to bridge immediately. “Get up!” He heaved a rough foot into her side. Calla’s eyes opened but her frozen body remained where it was. Grabbing her by the chains, still naked and shivering, Kanan hauled her onto the bridge with him.

“We’re losing power.” Naveen told him as he and those around him frantically worked the controls. “Life support is going down.”

“The engines are failing!” J’quinn, Kanan’s Captain of the Guard shouted out from his post.

“Get it fixed!” Naganti Kanan ordered as though they weren’t already trying to do just that.

“Nothing’s working!” Naveen answered. “We have to find a place to land or we’re going to be dead in space.”

“Cha’Dech?” His eyes turned a cold stare to her. “What have you done?”

Calla dropped to her knees. “I have nothing to do with this, My Lord.” She told him. “I swear! I know nothing of ships and engines.”

The outpost where they picked up supplies a few weeks back was one of the last inhabitable planets before reaching the Dega-Bah system and Yohimbe which was still two weeks away. “Do you know of some place we can land?”

“No,” she mumbled with her head bent low, “but if you take these off me,” she held her wrists as high as the chains would allow, “I might find one.”

“Life support is dropping!” Naveen shouted.

“The stabilizers are giving out.” J’quinn informed Kanan. The ship began to rock and sway unsteadily.

Left with little options grudgingly, Kanan released Calla from the chains. “Do something!” He shouted at her. “Can’t you find anything on the scanners?!”

Naveen went to work at his controls searching space for a suitable place to land the space ship.

The chains gone Calla looked around inside of herself and tried to decide if it was better than they should just die a slow death in space, suffocating from a lack of oxygen or if she should try and find a safe place to land. Surprisingly enough, Calla found she wasn’t ready to give up just yet. Zeus shared he knowledge of the stars with her but Grandfather was gone now. Searching deep inside she hoped his information still remained. In her mind she saw the same stars as were shown on the view screen in front of them. Nearby there was a very small and relatively unknown planetary system it had three planets and five moons. All of the planets were dead and so were four moons but one could sustain life. It was a long shot but…. “Naganti Kanan,” she whispered. “Fifteen degrees hard to port, twenty minutes, twenty-eight degrees starboard ten minutes and we will find a moon.”

Over half an hour. “Can we make it that long?”

“We’re going to have to.” Naveen replied and followed her marks with the long range scanners. Sure enough there was a very small moon with an oxygen atmosphere.

“Go!” Kanan shouted and the ship took a hard turn to the port side. Everyone on the ship stumbled under the force of it. “You better be right.”

“Or what?” She asked with a smile. “You’ll kill me?”

Kanan’s upper lip curled and he growled at her but he didn’t have the time to take care of her right now that would have to wait for later.

All around them the ship was failing and everyone held their breath and held out to the nearest secured object hoping to make it out of this alive. After fifteen minutes the moon displayed on the view screen, a faint and distant blip in the night. Ten minutes later it grew bigger and the stabilizers were down to 40%, the ship tossed and rocked as though it were in a hurricane. Kanan barked orders trying to keep his ship steering straight and on course and the men hustled around with the same intention.

“Life support is still failing, down to 30%!” Naveen shouted out.

“Come on,” Kanan muttered under his breath. Behind him the engine panel exploded, sparks flew wildly around the bridge and a fire sprung up. “Put it out!” Kanan shouted to J’quinn. But J’quinn was not very lucky today. The panel exploded directly in his face, taking his head off his shoulders. His dead torso lay slumped over the exploding panel feeding the electrical fire with blood.

Two down. Calla thought as she held onto the Captain’s Chair gazing down at the man who had once delighted in helping Kanan torture her. Good riddance.

“We’re going in! Grab on to something!” Naveen shouted as the small ship broke the moon’s atmosphere. “The stabilizers and engines are gone, this going to be rough!”

On the screen the small moon loomed larger and larger by the second. Calla felt a rough hand on her upper arm and suddenly she was falling to the floor. Kanan wedged the two of them between the Captain’s Chair and the engine control station behind it. His huge arms wrapped tightly around to hold her in place. The ship made a horrible whirring noise as it bumped and crashed in the waves of space.

Impact was hard. The ship took a nose dive into the moon’s surface and then skidded along like a flat stone on the water’s surface. Pieces of the ship broke up and fell off as the occupants were tossed about like dry leaves on a windy autumn night.

When all was said and done and the ship finally rested quietly the only survivors of the crash were Calla, Kanan, Naveen and Rowan MacNeal. For the time being, Kanan’s worries about what to do with the Cha’Dech were over. The ship wasn’t going anywhere and neither were they. However Kanan’s troubles and worries regarding just how to keep the Cha’Dech and Rowan from killing each other had just begun.

The moon they crash landed upon was as the Cha’Dech described it; small, roughly ¼ the size of Earth, but with an oxygen atmosphere and probably animal and plant life. It was night now and too dark too see they would have to wait until morning to assess their surroundings. The ship, however, was a different story. There were holes in it large enough to fit a wild boar through, it wasn’t good for anything now but whatever supplies they could scavenge from it and as temporary shelter.

Calla, Kanan and Naveen exited the ship together just to have a small peek at their immediate surroundings. Calla stood there in the dark with Kanan holding onto her chains hoping the crash killed Rowan but she didn’t get that lucky. A few minutes after they walked out the main hatch Rowan followed them. She was battered and bruised and it even looked as though she might have broken her arm but she was alive and starting to run her mouth.

“Well, look what we have here.” Rowan cooed and reached out a slender finger to flick the chains around Calla’s wrists. “The little cuckolded house frau all chained up and ready for fun.”

“Back off, Rowan.” Kanan ordered. “I think we have bigger problems at the moment.”

“I’m not your little bitch; you don’t order me around big boy.” Rowan told him. “Now that you’ve gotten me stuck on this rock how do you plan to get me off?”

“Shut her up.” Kanan told Naveen. A big right hand crashed down on Rowan’s pretty face. “You could take a few lessons from her,” Kanan tossed his head in Calla’s direction, “learn to keep your place.”

Kanan turned his back and Calla stuck her tongue out at Rowan. This less than adult gesture was accompanied by not one but two, One-Fingered Salutes.

“Get back inside.” Kanan told them. At least the ship came to rest on its belly and they would still have some place to keep them sheltered for a while. “Let’s get a look at the communications and see if we can send a distress call.”

The lock on Kanan’s door still worked and he sequestered Calla inside while he and Naveen went to see if they could repair the communications system and find whatever they could salvage from the ship. Rowan was left outside alone where she couldn’t do much damage. The only thing she could do was…..

Tap. Tap. Tap.

Torment the imprisoned woman through her Master’s Chamber Door.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

Rowan’s long finger nail wrapped against the metal door. “I know you’re in there,” she cooed in a sing-song voice, “I know you can hear me you little trollop.”

Tap. Tap. Tap.

“Don’t think this means you’re not going to Hecate, I’ll get you to her if it’s the last thing I ever do.” Rowan hissed. “David was a better lay than that sappy husband of yours any day of the week. What do you think, my dear? After all you had both of them as well. And Eros, how do you think he rated as a lover?”

Eros? Hecate? What did Rowan know of these things?

Tap. Tap. Tap. “Do you like the photographs? I brought them just for you.” Rowan taunted through the safety of the closed door. “It’s only fair I suppose,’” she sighed, “you seduced my husband so I seduced yours. It wasn’t hard, Daniel is easily lead astray.” She cooed. “What about Eros? Was he so easy to bed?”

Kanan came around the corner to see Rowan outside his door. “Get away from there!” He demanded. “Go back to your own quarters.”

Calla heard her Master’s voice and knew the door was about to open. She just couldn’t help herself.

Beep. Blip. Bloop. Beep. Kanan was punching in the combination on the panel. The door slid open and a red-headed hurricane flew at Psyche. “You fucking bitch!” Calla screamed as she tackled the unsuspecting woman knocking her to the floor of the ship and pouncing on top of her. The chains at her wrists wouldn’t let her fits fly the want she wanted too and they wouldn’t let her use her powers to turn the wicked bitch into dust but that didn’t stop her from doing as much damage as she could before Kanan wrestled her off her.

**

With only his fatigues to cover him Daniel came running into the control room of Thor’s ship. “Slow down!” He shouted. “You’ve got to slow down. She’s here somewhere.”

“Lord Ares said to…..”

“I don’t give a damn what Ares said!” Spit flew from his mouth. “I can hear her. She’s around here somewhere. Stop… this… god…. Damn…. ship.”

**

“You turned my brother against me!” Calla shouted and landed a small fist on Psyche’s jaw. “Bed my husband!” Another blow.

“It’s not like he wasn’t willing!” Psyche screamed back and landed a strike across Calla’s face. “He couldn’t wait to have someone other than a slut like you!”

“Lying wench! How did you cross the River?” Calla reached out to embrace Psyche’s throat with her hands.

“I have high friends in low places.” The woman below her spat and blocked Calla’s bound hands from her tender neck.

“Get off!” Kanan demanded as he pulled at the small woman but Calla would not let go. Her thighs were firmly clamped down on the woman’s hips and each time he pulled Rowan came with her. “Maen, Cha’Dech! Byan ginan Naganti!”

“Co!” Calla screamed back as she reached for the woman below her once more, her fingers turned into talons they ripped at the flesh of Psyche’s face. Psyche’s cheeks tore open in four perfectly spaced lines. “Rak She Heta Mok!” She yelled at Kanan.

“What did you say?” He shouted back and finally pulled her off the battered woman.

“You made me Cha’Dech,” she said defiantly and looked up at her Master’s face. “I have rights.” She asserted. “I claim my right to Vengeance!” Her little fits beat against his huge chest. “Do you know who she is???? Do you know what she’s done to me??? Rak She Heta Mok!” Calla tugged at the chains holding her back. “Release me.”

Now he was in a fine pickle. Callestah was right, as Cha’Dech she did have certain privileges and rights one of which being claiming the right to right a wrong done to her.

“You were born a whore! All I did was to recognize it first.” Psyche returned with contempt. “You turned my husband’s heart against me….”

“Eros had thousands of lovers before and after you!” Calla spat and tried to get out of Kanan’s hold. “My brother loved me! You set his mind and heart against me! You did it to all of them!” Seething she looked up at Kanan. “I’ve never asked you for anything but my freedom. Let me go, I deserve this!”

“Who the hell are you?” Kanan asked as his hold on her tightened. “Answer me!”

“Don’t know who you’re in bed with, Naganti Kanan?” Calla said through tight lips. “This is my sister in-law, Psyche. The one who cursed me and turned my entire family against me.” Calla let out a high laugh. “Perhaps you should thank her after all it is because of her that Ares sent met to you!”

Wiping the blood away from her chin, Psyche rose to her feet. “Hecate is going to drain you of all that are you.” She threatened in a low whisper. “Then she will join with me and we will lay waste to every single Olympian left on Earth, including those bastard children of yours!” Psyche tried to lean in closer but Kanan held out one arm to keep her at bay. “Daniel always knew my identity he couldn’t wait to make love with me.” She taunted. “He wanted to leave you and come away with me because you’re so damn filthy! You’ve had more pricks than a pin cushion! Daniel never wanted you he only pitied you.”

“No!” Calla strained against Kanan’s hold. “Release me! I’m going to kill her!”

“Get back to your quarters, now!” Kanan shouted and shoved Calla through the open door of his chamber. It slid firmly into place behind him.

“You may hold me prisoner the rest of my life,” she said firmly to Kanan, “you may turn me over to Hecate and have her end my life. I will never give up my claim to vengeance against her.” Calla took one daring step forward. “You owe me.” She told him.

“Getting a little brazen, aren’t we?” Kanan asked her.

“Rape me, beat me, kill me, I don’t give a fucking damn! I want my piece of that bitch!” She screamed. “No matter what you do or say I’m going to get it.” Calla stormed over to the pictures on the wall and ripped them down. “I want my piece of him as well.” She muttered and tore them to shreds. “Take these damn chains off of me!”

The little Cha’Dech was lost in a sea of rage and nothing he did would soothe it or sway it. He could hit her, beat her, tie her down and the only purpose it would serve would be to fuel her anger. Her Father’s daughter to be sure. When she got like this—which was not often thank all the gods! — All anyone could do was hope to get out of the way in time. Even if he didn’t let her, sooner or later and one way or another she would get her revenge on Psyche. “Lay down in your corner!” Naganti Kanan demanded. “Seethe all you want but you will have no vengeance tonight.”

Calla stood defiantly with her arms crossed and her lips pursed staring at him.

“Don’t bite off more than you can chew, little girl.” Kanan warned. “Pick up your mess and then lay down in your corner!”

**

Thor’s ship slowed at Daniel’s request and the little benign alien turned his unblinking attention to the lights flashing on his control screen.

“Why are we stopping?” Ares demanded as he flew from around the corner still bare-chested from sleeping.

“Doctor Jackson said….”

“I don’t give a shit what that little worm said,” Ares interjected, “keep going!”

Thor and Daniel ignored him. “Anything?”

“Yes, Doctor Jackson.” Thor said in a surprised voice. “Long range scanners are picking up debris, it appears as though a ship has recently had massive trouble in the vicinity.”

“What?” Ares asked and came closer.

“From the looks of it I’d say it was a Gesh’Tah ship.” Thor informed them. “There isn’t enough debris to account for the entire ship so it must be somewhere.”

Come on, come on, just fucking come on! Daniel thought. “Is there a planet, something anything, nearby that will support life?”

“Checking now.” Thor worked his controls while a long and insufferable moment passed by. “There is a small moon, it’s possible they made it there and landed.”

“S’go!” Daniel shouted. “Now.”

“You don’t give the orders around here, Jackson.” Ares threatened.

“I do now.” Daniel told him. “Get going. She’s there. I know she is.” And man oh man-a-schevitz! Was she pissed the hell off! There were three emotions that Calla never had any problem communicating to him; love, fear and those few and far between moments when she was so incredibly enraged all she could do was scream. Right now she was having one of those latter moments. Daniel couldn’t help but laugh a little as he wondered how Kanan was handling that little do. “I’m comin’ Kitty, just hold on.” Daniel prayed out loud. “Daddy’s comin’.”

“Yes, he is.” Ares said from behind him.

Chapter Six

When morning came the four strandees made their way from their wrecked ship with Kanan firmly holding on to Calla and Naveen keeping a strong hold on Rowan. The men surveyed the ship and damage in the new light of day while the women sniped at each other and hurled insults.

The food and water supplies on the ship were destroyed in the crash and the small troop wandered away from the crash site in search of the basic necessities of life; food, water and a new shelter. Walking for hours they finally came upon a lake with fresh water. Fish jumped out of the blue water so that helped to ease their empty stomachs. Every few moments Kanan found himself tugging on the chain which was pulling in his hands as Callestah tried to grab for the Rowan-woman.

“Nice water, remind you of anything?” Psyche called out. “I should have drowned you that stupid mother of yours got in my way.”

By the lake, Kanan settled Calla down on a rock near the shore. “I’ve had about all I can take of this bickering and back stabbing.” He told her in a frustrated voice. “You want your revenge, Cha’Dech?”

“Hei.” Calla said strongly.

“Naveen and I require amusement anyway.”

“You’re not going to take those chains off her, Kanan.” Psyche said in a worried voice. “You can’t, we have an agreement.”

“As I told Omar, before I killed him, we had an agreement.” Kanan corrected her. “Seeing as how we’re stuck here I think the agreement has gone straight out the window.” With a sparkle in his eye Kanan covered the wrist cuffs on her hands. Naganti Kanan was accustomed to several things in life but two of his utmost favorites were Order and Silence. This was nothing but a loud frenzied dissonance, it made the hair on the back of neck stand up and the muscles there tighten to their limit. An annoying tingling crawled up and down his spine as their voices rose and their tones descended.

If this was the way it was going to be every single day they were stranded here, well, it just wasn’t wroth the aggravation and he just couldn’t take it. Nope, not one more second of the two women’s shrill voices raised and them backbiting each other. Today was the day Naganti Kanan learned just how vile and viscous the ‘fairer sex’ could be to its own. This was intolerable as far as he was concerned and it just had to end. “Don’t worry, Rowan, Psyche whatever the hell your name is. I want it to be a fair fight. You don’t have any magickal power or you would have used them already.” The gold cuffs opened and then fell away. “She doesn’t, does she?” Kanan asked in a hush. Calla could have lied and said ‘yes’ and he probably would have believed her but she too wanted a fair fight. In this moment, more than anything else, Callestah was just grateful to have this opportunity dropped into her lap and as such she head shook from side to side. “The collar stays.” He said to Psyche. Kanan held both Callas’ wrists tightly in one hand and leaned into her again. “Go on, Cha’Dech, kick her ass. Go get what’s coming to you.”

Calla did not need to be told twice! Her mind raced and her heart pumped fire through her veins. No, she couldn’t use her abilities to fight Psyche but Kanan had been so kind as to leave the collar and wrist cuffs off her that she could still think even though she was still partially bound. Everything in her was ready to do just as Naganti Kanan ordered. Oh, so willing to go along and bring him some of that amusement he was looking for. Naveen let go his hold on Psyche and Calla charged at her.

Kanan thought it wise to shout out a bit of advice. “She wasn’t just my whore, you know? Callestah was part of my guard.” He turned and looked happily at Naveen as he settled on the sand to watch the women duke it out. “It’s why she always walked in front of me instead of behind,” he explained to Naveen. “Watch out, there Rowan-Pysche, the girl can kick butt.” With that Calla’s free fist connected with Psyche’s jaw. Her teeth gnashed together and her lip split open. “Oh,” Kanan cringed. “Bet that hurt.” He called out and handed a slab of hot freshly roasted fish over to Naveen. Both of the men looked very happy at the moment, the fish might as well have been popcorn and they might as well have been sitting ring-side at a championship match. They cheered and jeered as blows were landed, hair was yanked and teeth clamped down on flesh.

Psyche, the larger of the two women by far, managed to get her weight on top of Calla she began landing left and rights on the smaller woman’s jaw. Calla didn’t seem to notice them, with a great push she shoved her feet against the ground, her legs whipped forward toward her head and her knees secured around Psyche’s throat. Catching her off guard gave Calla the advantage and she used the rest of her momentum to sit up and pinned the woman to the ground by her shoulders.

“She always was a good grappler.” Kanan complimented in a loud voice and popped another piece of fish into his mouth.

“You’re a fucking whore just like your mother before you.” Psyche choked and reached out for Calla’s throat. “You never good for anything.”

“Are you gonna take that from her?” Naveen goaded and the two men laughed. They must be stuck here on this moon for the foreseeable future but they were having fun now.

Calla reached down to the sand at her sides, grabbed a handful of it and rubbed it in Psyche’s eyes. The woman below her screamed out in pain and Calla scurried away from her. “Come on,” she encouraged. “Let’s see what you’ve got.”

Half blind from sand and rage Psyche lunged in Calla’s general direction and got lucky. As she came down for what could have been a hard landing her hand caught one of Calla’s ankles. The smaller woman’s legs gave out from under her with the jolt and cushioned the larger woman’s fall. Sharp talons sunk through the torn velvet as Psyche clawed her way up Calla’s body. “You destroyed my life!” Psyche spat. “Your Father killed me! Aphrodite never wanted you! That’s why she left you with Mave.” Psyche landed another blow to Calla’s face and her cheek burst open. “Eros was my husband! He loved me! Wanted only me!” She brought Calla up to her face by the chains around the collar and then slammed it down into the sand once more. “You took him from me so I took yours from you.”

As she writhed and wrestled with Psyche on the ground at her throat Calla felt a strange sensation beneath the collar. Ares mark was glowing. The rest of them could not see it by her Father was close by. New hope surged through her as she tossed Psyche off and pounded her repeatedly with a closed fist. Until this very moment the Lady Callestah had never realized how angry she was. No, she’d always thought of herself as a rather peaceful and peace-loving individual. Albeit one with heavy baggage but not what would call angry.

She was angry. The Lady Callestah had kept that anger and rage stuffed down inside of her all of her life. She thought she’d gotten rid of it or perhaps she’d convinced herself that she had nothing to be angry about that she deserved everything that happened to her.

She didn’t.

One hand pounding away at Psyche’s face the other fell upon a rock as she grappled for balance. Seizing it in her hot little hand she brought the heavy stone on the side of Psyche’s head. The woman below her stopped struggling.

“Nice shot!” Naganti Kanan called out and seeing the woman TKO’d thought the fight to be over. He was wrong.

The Lady Callestah stood above her victim and grabbed a handful of brown hair. She looked longingly at the lake for but a second before dragging her off toward the water. Dragging the woman as though she were fresh kill, Calla gave a cold stare at Kanan who was beginning to rise. For the first time in his life he was afraid of her. She was a woman on a mission and nothing was going to get in her way. Kanan sat down.

Heart pumping in her chest and breath hitching hot and raspy in her lungs The Lady Callestah picked up the body of the unconscious woman in her arms as though she were nothing more than a sack of sugar, though Psyche outweighed her by a good fifty pounds.

Psyche woke with a frightful start as she breathed in a lungful of cold water. Above her Calla’s hands were ruthless around the back of her neck. The woman’s knee was planted in her back and every time Psyche struggled to free herself she found herself face first in the silt at the bottom of the lake trying to breath in mud and sand along with the cold water.

At the water line The Lady Callestah held no expression on her face or in her eyes as she held the woman under the water. It was no effort at all to keep her there, no Calla felt as though she were holding down nothing more than a feather beneath her hand. Psyche bucked and kicked and jumped and struggled to be free. The Lady was viscous and held no mercy in heart for the woman fighting for her life.

Long after the water was still and the woman stopped bucking she still stood there holding her down just to be sure. When she finally did let go, Psyche’s body did not rise to float on the water but sunk just below it and was carried away by the small current.

“Nice work.” Said a deep and familiar voice. “Do you feel better, daughter?”

The Lady looked up to see her Father standing on the riverbank. Kanan and Naveen were both taken by surprise, both reached for their weapons only to find them turned to a licorice-like substance. “Get those off my daughter.” Ares demanded of Kanan. At Ares demand Kanan rose to his feet.

Callestah was trotting out of the water running with open arms to Ares. This nightmare was over! Kanan was coming toward her to free of the chains and this would soon be nothing but a bad memory. Rather than free her, Kanan grabbed her and used her as a shield. Ares magick may work on guns but he’d forgotten about the knife in Kanan’s belt. One foot planted in front of one hers, his body behind her, one arm wrenching his favorite one behind her back he had her firmly secure while the other hand held the knife just above the collar line to her throat, Kanan smiled. “I don’t think so.”

“You think you can take me on?” Ares asked. “I’d think about that if I were you.”

“What does it matter?” Kanan asked. “You’re going to kill me as soon as I take these off her anyway.”

Naveen grabbed for a throwing weapon and was hit by a blast from an unseen staff weapon. Wounded but not yet dead he fell over onto his side. Teal’c emerged from his hiding place in the underbrush. “Let her go.”

“You’ve brought company.” Naganti Kanan remarked.

“Not that I need it.” Ares reminded him and shot a fireball over the big ebony man’s shoulder.

“You won’t risk hitting her.” Kanan dared and another one went past him, closer this time. They were landing in the water behind him with a loud hissing sound. “You have a ship you’re going to take us off this moon.”

“Am I?” Ares asked.

“Yes. Get me out of here and I’ll give her back to you.”

The weight behind her shifted dramatically, the blade nicked her throat as Kanan’s hands fell away from her. Once free she ran to Ares.

The missing person in the little three-man party snuck up behind Naganti Kanan while he was distracted by Ares and Teal’c. In one fluid movement, Daniel wrapped his hand around the long thick braids of Kanan’s and the other grabbed at the hand holding the knife to her throat. With all the strength and weight her had, Daniel threw himself backward so Calla could make her escape.

Caught by surprise Kanan stumbled around on the ground for a moment reaching for the woman who had been in his arms. He saw her sprinting away and to the waiting arms of her Father. Turning around to gaze upon what caused this sudden turn of events he saw Daniel Jackson with a working gun in his hand. Like Calla a few moments ago, Daniel’s expression was blank and he didn’t say a word as he emptied the chamber into Kanan’s chest.

“By the Gods, Jackson! You killed him!” Ares roared and scooped up the body of his shaking daughter. “How are we going to get this off now?” He rattled the chains on the collar still around her throat.

Daniel didn’t care about that at the moment as he ran over to her. “Calla? Honey.” He reached out for her as he neared them. “Kitty, are you all right?”

Callestah cringed in her Father’s arms. “Don’t you touch me.” She cried in a small voice.

“Calla,” Daniel whispered in astonishment and stopped in his tracks. “Kitty, I love you. I’ve been searching for you.”

“No,” she cuddled against the warmth of Ares’ chest. “You never loved me.”

“Forget love,” Ares seethed, “we have to get this off!”

Teal’c rolled Naveen over as he came forward. The man was still breathing and moaning in pain. “Perhaps he can help.”

“Kanan has to take them off.” Ares groused. “He can’t do that now can he?” Though he was looking off at the dead body of Naganti Kanan, movement from his left caught Ares’ eye. The wounded guard was waving for him to bring Callestah over to him. Ares walked over to where the man lay dying and knelt with his daughter in his arms.

Naveen reached out and covered the stone in the center of the collar. “Release.” He said in a death rattle. The back of the collar split in two. Ares ripped it off of her and threw it to the ground. Looking down at the young man whose life was fading away he watched as the man produced a gold key on a gold chain from his pocket. He dropped it in Ares’ waiting hand and then reached out to touch the frightened face of the woman cowering in the big man’s arms. “He lied about you.” Naveen gasped. “So many years, he lied.” His hand fell away from her face as the last of his life faded from his body.

Chapter Seven

They spent a week on Thor’s ship until they reached the Outpost where they departed and used the Stargate to get back to Earth. Ares told Thor his debt was wiped clean and that seemed to make the little guy pretty happy. Thor called ahead to the SGC to let them know their friends were on their way home.

In that week Calla said nothing to Daniel in fact she hardly looked at him and did her best to avoid him whenever possible. It was a strange wonder to her just why he was here. He should have been with Psyche, shouldn’t he? Perhaps he was. Perhaps he wasn’t trying to ride to her rescue but to the rescue of his lover and failed and now he felt stuck with her all over again. Whatever his reasons for being here, they didn’t matter to her. Calla spent most of the time with Ares in his quarters and not taking company.

Daniel couldn’t sleep, couldn’t eat, he couldn’t even think. All he could do was wonder what they were doing behind that closed door. No matter how much he tried to talk to her she pushed him away. Once he tried to tell her about Nicholas and Colleen, she actually listened for a while. She didn’t say anything to him but she didn’t walk away either. As soon as the conversation turned in another direction she was gone. He tried to tell her that he wanted to help her and that if she’d just let him he could make the physical pain she was suffering through go away. She didn’t want to listen and she certainly didn’t want to get within arms reach of him.

Ares was right. Calla knew Rowan’s true identity and she wasn’t about to forgive him for taking her as mistress. Yeah, well, if he were her then he probably wouldn’t forgive himself for that one either. Come to think of it, he wasn’t her and he probably wouldn’t forgive himself for it.

Their arrival at the SGC was small but very joyous. Jack and Sam were waiting with the children. Sam rushed to pick them up and tell them the good news the moment she heard Calla was with them. The children were excited and relieved to know their mother wasn’t dead and that she was coming home to them.

The woman who stepped through the Stargate, the one with the bewildered eyes and shaking hands was not the same one who’d left them so many months prior. Something in her changed somehow, it…shifted…and she would never be that woman again.

Still reeling from everything that had transpired and the effects of wearing the chains so long Calla didn’t know what to do when the children ran to her. So long she held the secret hope of this moment and now that it was here she was lost. All she could do was hold them tightly to her breasts, cover them with kisses and tell them how much she loved them. Tearfully they made her promise that she would never go away again.

Though she knew it was cruel to do to the children, Calla expressed a desire to go and stay with her Father for a while. She had many things to sort out and didn’t feel she could do that with Daniel around. Calla wanted the children to come with her and they wanted to go.

“Stay with me.” Daniel pled as they stood alone in his office. He convinced her to come and talk with him, just for a moments, before Ares took the three of them away from him for good. He knew if she left she was never coming back. Ares would have her right where he wanted her and, in truth, it was where part of her wanted to be. However, Daniel wasn’t ready to give up so easily, not without one last try. “Kitty, please don’t do this.” Daniel reached for her hand but she wouldn’t let him take it. “I love you.” He confessed. “I’ll do anything you want, baby, please just stay with me. Don’t go.”

“Love me? I am nothing more than a burdensome obligation to you, Daniel.”

“What would make you say something like that? You’re not a burden and you’re not an obligation, Calla. I don’t have to be with you, I want to be with you. You don’t believe me, do you?”

“Did you love her?” Calla asked.

“Who? Rowan?” Daniel was shocked by the question. They had gone over this, even though neither of them knew who she really was he had already told her…”no, I never loved her. Look at me.” He put his hand under her chin to tilt her face up. “I never said I would leave you. I never told her I loved her.”

“David? Did you let him say these things to her?”

Daniel thought and thought and as he did her eyes turned colder. “I don’t know.” He said finally in an exasperated tone. “Where is all of this coming from? You know I only love you.”

“You had her in our new house. In our bed.” She accused.

“I never…”

“You did.” She insisted. “I saw the pictures of you kissing on the front porch.”

“She kissed me.” Daniel contended and felt her pull away. “She was never in our house and she was never in our bed.” His heart was already breaking as he stood and listened to her and Daniel felt for sure that she would never come back to him now. So, that was why Rowan showed up at the house that day. She wanted to make her photographs look good so she could persecute Calla with them. “I didn’t invite her to our home, she just showed up that day. I was standing there on the porch thinking about you, missing you and there she was.”

The image of the photograph of Daniel by himself looking lost and forlorn as he stared out over the horizon came to her. Maybe he was telling the truth. “It’s not that you were unfaithful or even who you did it with,” she said. “I can live with that, it’s just sex, right? It doesn’t mean anything, right?” Her voice was soft but her eyes were full of derision. “Stay with you? I thought you loved me. I went with Kanan so you would be safe, I tried to protect you. How could you forget me so quickly?”

“I never forgot you.” Daniel reached out again and when she tried to get away he didn’t let her. “Not for a single second, I swear.” His arms embraced her. “I could never forget you.” Daniel kissed the side of her head. “We’ll work this out.” He promised. “I know we will. We can’t do that if we’re not together.” Daniel pulled his face away to look at her. “So just stay with me, please, Kitty. I love you more than anything.”

“I don’t want to love you anymore. The price is too high.”

Yeah, between David and Rowan/Psyche he’d done a lot of shitty things to her over the last four years. Not to mention all the time he spent away from her and his family. Husband of The Year material he wasn’t. He could and would do better if she just gave him the chance. “But you do love me.” He smiled at her. “Don’t you?”

“I have always loved you even when you were not with me.” Calla sighed and let them warmth of his embrace begin to wash over her.

“If I swear never to hurt you again, will you stay with me?” Daniel pressed his lips to her finger tips. “Will you give me one more chance? If you do, I swear I will spend the rest of my life making this up to you.”

“I don’t know if I can do this anymore, I don’t belong in your world, Daniel.” She shook her head and lowered her eyes. “I don’t belong in mine.”

“You belong with me,” he brushed the hair away from her bruised face, “with Nicky and Cole. We’ll take it one step at a time, I promise. I know you’ve been through a lot,” Daniel stopped talking not wanting to think of the ‘lot of things’ she’d been through just recently. He enveloped in his arms and felt her relax against him. “I love you. Don’t leave me, please, Kitty, don’t leave.”

Naganti Kanan had wanted her to make love with him the same way she once made love with Daniel. Why? Because he was jealous of what he’d seen in the mirror. Looking up into those heavenly blue eyes she found that some part of her still wanted to make love with him like that. There was still trust here, tattered and frayed about the edges but it was still there. The life she wanted for herself was still within reach. Thomas Wolfe said you can never go home again. There was a great deal of truth to that statement. But she was willing to try.

“I love you, Daniel. I don’t know if I can be your wife again but I don’t want to leave you.”

“You don’t have to share my bed. Just stay in my life. I’m begging you, please, don’t go with Ares.”

Against her better judgment, Calla found her arms wrapping themselves around his waist and she was pulling herself closer to him. He was soft and warm and he smelled so good, she’d almost forgotten what it was like to be close to him and feel his heart beating against her. “One step at a time?”

“Yeah, little baby ones, I promise.”

“I will stay with you.” It would be a long road back to the place they left off but as long as they stayed together anything was possible.

Aside | This entry was posted in Romantic Novel. Bookmark the permalink.

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