Stargate Horizons


As SG-1 headed down the road toward the city, Daniel was busy adjusting to the here and now.  It was so strange to look across the fields and see wild grass, brush and weeds instead of crops and livestock, to see piles of rubble where stone cottages and houses that he recently passed had stood.

When they reached the city, Daniel's stared at the buildings that, only a short while ago, he saw whole and undamaged.  It saddened him that this city that Egeria loved so well had been reduced to this.

Their path through the city did not take them past the gallery that he helped to build, something for which Daniel was glad.  He didn't want to see the structure that was Aulus' pride and joy in ruins.

When they drew abreast of the palace, Daniel could not help but stop and look at it.  His eyes went to the left, to where the east garden used to be, and he thought about all the conversations he'd had there with Egeria.  His gaze then went to the west side of the palace, to where his garden had been, the one that was destroyed then created anew especially for him.

Daniel felt a soft hand placed upon his shoulder.  He turned to see Sam looking at him in concern.

"Daniel, are you all right?" she asked, searching his eyes.

The archeologist took a deep breath and let it out.  "Yeah.  Yeah, I'm all right."

Just then, the wind shifted, and he caught a very faint scent on the air, one that made him smile in surprise.

"Do you smell that?" he asked.

Sam drew in a deep breath.  "Yeah.  It's wonderful.  Is it some kind of flower?"

"Let's check it out."

"Oh, for cryin' out loud," Jack complained.  "You want to detour to go look at a flower?"

"It'll only take a few minutes, Jack.  Besides, it'll give me a chance to take a closer look at the palace."

Mumbling something unintelligible, Jack reluctantly followed Daniel and Sam, Teal'c taking up the rear.  The archeologist headed unerringly toward the west side of the palace, not needing his nose to tell him where he'd find the flowers that were producing that scent.

There was not much left of the wall that had surrounded the garden.  SG-1 found a place where there was a huge gap blasted all the way through it and stepped into the remains of what used to be the west garden.  Daniel turned toward the palace . . . and almost gasped.  Most of the entryway he'd created and the walls coming off it were gone, turned to a pile of rubble, but the wisteria-like vine has survived the destruction.  It had covered the debris and spread to the remains of the palace's west wall.  It was enormous and bursting with flowers, a blazing display of the deepest, most intense royal blue.

"Holy Hannah," Sam murmured, clearly awed by the incredible floral display.  "That color is amazing."

"Yeah, it's really something else," Daniel murmured, remembering so clearly the day he and Egeria discovered the vine.

"Hey!  Look what I found!" Jack exclaimed.

Daniel turned to him and looked at what was in his hands.  Oh, God.  Why, why, why of all things in this whole city did that have to be something that survived?!

"Don't you think it kind of looks like Daniel?" Jack asked, grinning.

Sam studied the statue.  "You're right, sir, it does.  Actually, the resemblance is uncanny."

"I don't have that many muscles," Daniel mumbled, wanting so desperately to disappear right into the ground.

"True," Jack agreed.  "It is closer to Teal'c in that regard than you, but the face is almost spot on.  Hey, maybe it was a relative of yours who posed for it."

"Oh, sure, Jack, a cousin a hundred or so times removed."

The colonel tucked the statue under his arm.

"What are you doing?" Daniel asked.

"I'm taking it with me as a souvenir."

"No, you're not."

"Yes, I am."


"Are too."  Jack smiled smugly.  "Just try and stop me."

Daniel turned his back on the man and strode out of the ruins of the garden.  "This is not amusing," he muttered.

"Yes, it is!" Jack crowed.

Daniel decided that he was right before.  The Fates did exist, and they were having fun toying with him.

Studiously ignoring Jack and the object he was carrying, Daniel traveled the rest of the way to the gate with his team.  As he dialed the address for Earth, he bid a silent farewell to Egeria's city.

The shower Daniel took in the locker room felt incredible.  He wanted to just stand under the spray and soak it in.  Never again would he take hot showers for granted, not after months of bathing in a river.

Daniel was in the midst of putting on his shoes when Jack said something that made him freeze.

"That's an odd tan line.  I don't recall seeing that before."

Daniel looked down at his right wrist.  A faint tan line was visible where the slave bracelet had been.

The archeologist did some quick thinking.  "Um . . . I probably got that last weekend.  I was out in the sun a lot and had, uh, something wrapped around my wrist."

Jack studied him.  "Yeah, now that I'm paying attention, you do look like you got a wee bit of a tan."  He frowned.  "Have you let your hair grow out a little?"

Daniel touched his hair.  He hadn't had time to have it cut in a while.  He'd hoped that no one would notice.

"A bit," he replied.

Jack turned back to the task of getting dressed.  "You know, I'm thinking that statue just wouldn't work well for my place.  Not my style, you know.  It occurs to me that I really should give it to the Archeology Department.  After all, it is an artifact.  They could put it on display in that room where some of the other artifact things are."

Daniel glared at Jack, seeing the little smirk hovering around his lips.

"You wouldn't."

"What's the matter, Daniel?  You have something against statuary?"

"Jack, I'm warning you.  If that statue ends up being displayed anywhere, I'll tell everyone about that time you got drunk on the beer brewed by the inhabitants of M5D-810 and made a pass at the hundred-ten-year-old great-great-grandmother of the chieftain."

Jack's eyes narrowed.  "Oh, now that's a low blow, Daniel.  I had one mug!  How was I to know that the stuff was at least two hundred proof?  And she didn't look that old!"

Daniel was unmoved by his complaint.  "It's up to you, Jack."

The colonel stewed for a few seconds longer, then reached under the bench and very reluctantly handed the statue over to Daniel.

"You have absolutely no sense of humor," he grumbled.  "So, what are you going to do with it?"

Daniel promptly stuffed it in his locker and buried it under a pile of socks.  "That looks like a good place for it."

Several times during the debriefing, Daniel almost told everyone what happened, but every time he started to open his mouth to say the words, he thought about what he'd decided and remained silent.  If he was in the military, it would be his duty to report what happened.  That was one advantage of being a civilian; he didn't have to worry about being court-martialed for keeping secrets.

As he got dressed into his civvies that evening, Daniel's eyes kept going to the pile of socks on the bottom shelf.  He finally pushed them away to reveal what was underneath.  Glancing about to make sure no one was around, he pulled the statue out and stared at it.  He thought about how much it had embarrassed him when he first saw it and the matching one.  Then he thought about what inspired Egeria to have them sculpted.  He ran a finger over the chipped and cracked surface, amazed that it had sustained so little damage.

Deciding that it wouldn't be right for this symbol of Egeria's regard for him to be buried under a pile of socks, Daniel made room for it in the box that contained the vase, which the general had said that he could keep.

Once Daniel got to his apartment, he removed the vase from the box, then put the box, with the statue still inside, up in his closet.  After that, he rearranged some things in his display case to make room for the vase.  He then stood and stared at it for a long time.

Did his trip back in time change anything?  Did his actions alter history in any way?  How much longer did it take Egeria to decide on her own to make her break from the Goa'uld when he wasn't there to nudge her in that direction?  Could it be that, because of his interference, Egeria was able to spawn a few more Tok'ra?

There really was only one way that he could find out.  He'd have to go back to the Tok'ra and study the records he did before, look for any differences from last time.  But the Tok'ra would want to know why he was looking at the records again.  Perhaps it would be best just to forget it.

As he kept staring at the vase, Daniel was suddenly filled with regret.  He should have told Egeria that he forgave her.  He should have said that he couldn't hold against her something that had happened accidentally and without her knowledge.  She'd made a mistake, lost control and let her desire take over, but it was a mistake that many people made.  She wasn't perfect, and even the strongest of people could sometimes falter.

With a sigh, Daniel turned away from the case and headed off to bed.

The days that followed passed uneventfully.  In the beginning, Daniel felt a little guilty about keeping the secret from his friends, but he decided that they'd agree that keeping the device out of the hands of the rogue NID was of utmost importance.

Unwilling to keep hidden all the work he'd done on learning the Furling language in case they ever needed it in the future, Daniel decided to say that, while in the ruins, he'd videotaped all the writing.  That would allow him to pretend to go through the process of learning the language over the next few months.  He copied all the stuff he had on the language and put it in a password-protected file, then destroyed the papers.

It was two weeks after Daniel's return from his trip back in time that the SGC was contacted by the Tok'ra.  They had just learned some important information about the Goa'uld that might require a joint mission with an SG team, and the High Council wanted to discuss it.  Because the entire council could not come to Earth, it was decided that SG-1 and General Hammond would go to the Tok'ra base.

The meeting lasted for three hours, at the end of which it was decided that SG-1 would go on the mission with a small force of Tok'ra.  Since they would be leaving first thing in the morning, SG-1 would be staying on the base overnight rather than going back to Earth, then returning.

For about an hour after General Hammond had left, Daniel wandered around the base, trying to fight his curiosity about the historical records.  Finally, he couldn't take it anymore and asked someone if he could take a look at their records on Egeria and the beginnings of the Tok'ra.  It was not the person who'd helped him the other time, so he was hoping that no one would find out that he was looking at them again.

Daniel was given a crystal with the information he wanted and was led to a computer terminal.  For the next two hours, he scoured the records, looking for differences, some small way that history had been changed, but he couldn't find anything.  Everything appeared to be exactly the same as what he recalled reading the first time.  Daniel was relieved that his presence hadn't negatively messed with the timeline.

He was just about to call it quits when something jumped out at him.  It was a copy of something written by Egeria that was discovered in the building in which she had been hiding when Ra found her.  Egeria, knowing that she was living on borrowed time and would likely soon be found and killed, had talked about how she did not regret what she had done.  Daniel recalled reading it when he was there before.  At the time, he had wondered about the last few sentences.  Those sentences now riveted his attention.

"I still think of my dearest friend and wonder about the life he had after we said goodbye.  Did he find happiness with someone and have children?  Are his descendants out there in the galaxy somewhere?  After all these years, I still miss him.  If there is some kind of life after death, I hope that I will meet him there."

Daniel's heart rate began to increase.  There could be no doubt in his mind who Egeria's words were talking about, who that dearest friend was.  But if he was right, it meant that. . . .

"Oh my God," he whispered.

"Daniel, are you all right?"

The archeologist started violently and turned to look at Jacob.

"You looked like you just received a big shock," Sam's father said.  "Is something wrong?"

Daniel calmed himself with an effort.  "I-I . . . no.  Everything's fine."

Jacob came up to him.  "I just found out from Genrah that you were here taking a look at the records on Egeria and the start of the Tok'ra movement.  Didn't you look at those several months ago?"

Crap.  Daniel's eyes darted away from Jacob.  "Um . . . yeah.  I needed to . . . to check something."

Jacob sat beside him, an amused smile on his face.  "You know, you really should work on improving your ability not to show it when you're trying to hide something."

Daniel sighed.  Busted.

"So, care to share?" Jacob asked.

Daniel looked at him.  "I'd like to, Jacob, but it involves a . . . really big secret."

"Does this have something to do with the SGC?"

"No, it's . . . personal."

"Personal?  And this personal issue has something to do with the history of the Tok'ra?"

Daniel studied Jacob.  Should he tell him?  If he did, the Tok'ra would probably want to retrieve the time device.  In their hands at least it would be safe from the rogue NID.  And he wouldn't have to worry about them using it.  They'd know it would be foolish to mess with the timeline enough to make a difference in their fight.

One thing's for sure.  It would be quite a shock to all of them.  Actually, Daniel wasn't sure if he'd want all the Tok'ra to know.  That could be pretty embarrassing.  Not only that, but there would be the danger that some spy in their ranks would find out.  Speaking of spies, what if Tanith found out?  They were using the man to unwittingly pass on false information to the Goa'uld, but something this big would be hard to keep secret from him.

"Ummm . . . how good are you and Selmak at keeping secrets?" Daniel asked.

"Daniel, the entire Tok'ra movement is founded upon secrecy, and, as a general, I had to keep my fair share of secrets as well."

"Yes, but I'm talking about keeping a secret from everyone, the other Tok'ra, Stargate Command, everybody."

Jacob frowned.  "Okay, Daniel, tell me what's going on."

"I can't, Jacob, not unless it can stay between you and me.  A lot is riding on this.  I'm not exaggerating when I say that, if the wrong people found out, the fate of the whole galaxy could be put on the line."

The Tok'ra studied Daniel closely.  "You're not kidding, are you."  Jacob was silent for a moment.  "All right.  Selmak says that, if it turns out to really be that important, we won't tell anyone."

"Fair enough.  Is there someplace we can talk in private?"

"We can go to my quarters.  It has no door, but it's about as private as we can get short of leaving the tunnels."

Daniel thought about some Tok'ra passing by Jacob's quarters and overhearing something that was said.

"Um, what time of the day is it here?  Is there still a lot of daylight left?"

Jacob smiled slightly.  "I'm guessing that question means that my quarters aren't private enough.  Okay, there is another option.  We have a cloaked Tel'tak hiding on the surface.  It's the one we'll be using on the mission tomorrow.  Will that be private enough?"

"Yes, that should do."

They went topside and traveled the short distance to the ship.  Once inside, they took a seat in the cockpit.

"Okay, Daniel.  The floor's all yours."

"Two weeks ago, we went on a mission to a planet that turned out to be where Egeria lived two thousand years ago, at the time that she rebelled against the Goa'uld."

"Estrania.  Selmak was born there."

"Um . . . yeah.  There's not much left of the place."

"No, there wouldn't be.  After Egeria was declared an enemy of Ra and the rest of the Goa'uld, Ra sent ships to Estrania to level the place.  There wasn't anyone there, though.  Egeria had been planning her trip to Earth for years.  She knew that there was a very good chance that, regardless of whether or not she succeeded in stopping the taking of people from Earth, the Goa'uld would learn that she was behind it.  She sent hundreds of builders to another planet, one that she believed would be safe, and had them build thousands of houses and shelters for Estrania's human inhabitants, enough to contain the entire population, though it would be far from luxurious accommodations.  She also had crops planted, livestock brought over, and everything else that would be needed to sustain the population.  It took quite a while before it was ready.  Once all the people had been moved there, she told them that they needed to bury the gate, that it was the only way they would be safe.  The planet was beyond the edge of Goa'uld-controlled space at that time and had no Naquadah, so there would have been no reason for the Goa'uld to travel there by ship."

Daniel wasn't surprised.  The woman he knew wouldn't have left her subjects to suffer because of her actions.

He then had a thought.  "What was the planet's address?"

"I don't know what the SGC's designation would be, but I could give you the symbols."  Using the ship's computer, he generated the address.  Daniel smiled upon seeing it.

"You know it?" Jacob asked, seeing the smile.

"Yeah, I know it."  It was Egeria's "flower" planet, the one with the Ancient ruins.  Daniel had to wonder if the descendants of Egeria's people were still living there.  Maybe, someday, he'd find out.

Daniel continued with his narrative.  "While we were on Estrania, we found some ruins west of the city that were a great deal older than it."

Jacob nodded.  "Selmak remembers them.  They're what's left of a civilization that lived on the planet before Egeria arrived.  The Tok'ra never found out who they were or what happened to them."

"I know who they were.  It was the Furlings.  I recognized the language."

Jacob blinked.  "Wow.  That's news.  I wonder why they abandoned the place."

"That I don't know."  Daniel paused a moment.  "Did Selmak ever go inside?"

"Sure.  He's no archeologist, but he was naturally curious about the place."

"Does he recall the thing that sits in a room off the front chamber?  It was made of metal and is kind of similar to a DHD, except that the top isn't tilted at an angle and doesn't have the big orange thing in the middle."

Jacob nodded.  "He says that he has a vague memory of it.  Why do you ask?"

"Because it sent me back in time over two thousand years."

The Tok'ra blinked and stared at Daniel.

Daniel continued.  "At first, I thought that maybe I'd hit my head and was dreaming or hallucinating or something.  But it wasn't a dream or a hallucination.  It was real, and I can prove it to you.  How well does Selmak remember Egeria's palace?"

Jacob's head bowed for a moment.  When it lifted, it was Selmak who spoke.

"I remember it well.  My first host enjoyed the gardens and sitting out on the balconies.  Her favorite garden was the one on the north side because most of it was shady and cool in the heat of summer."

Daniel nodded.  "There was a fountain in the center with the figure of a rearing horse.  The water came out of its mouth.  All around the fountain were cobblestones, and white marble benches were positioned on four sides.  There were flowering bushes that looked a little like small rhododendrons, and a tree that looked a lot like a miniature version of an oak.  The colors of the flowers were mostly yellows, oranges and pinks."

Selmak was gaping at him.  "You are right.  That is as I remember it.  Though it is possible that something remains of the fountain and the benches to this day, you could not have known about what grew there unless. . . ."

"Someone told me or I was there two thousand years ago and saw it for myself.  I can tell you more.  Ask me questions about the throne room, the kitchen, the library . . . the small room off a side corridor that held the sarcophagus.  There wasn't much of the palace that I didn't see.  And, if that's still not enough, I've got videos back on Earth.  I had my video camera with me."

It was Jacob who spoke next.  "Daniel, this is incredible.  Selmak is having me do the talking because he wants to devote all his attention to absorbing this.  You were actually there, two thousand years ago when Egeria was there?  Exactly what time period?"

"It was before, Jacob.  When I arrived, Egeria was still a Goa'uld."

"Oh, boy."

"Yeah.  Not long after I arrived, I was grabbed by some Jaffa.  I thought my goose was cooked when I was brought before the Goa'uld.  When she told me her name, I almost shouted."

Jacob leaned forward.  "What happened then?"

"I made up a story that I was a traveler from another world and had come through the Stargate.  I'd noticed that there were some comings and goings through the gate, so I hoped that it would be a plausible story."

Jacob's head nodded.  "Egeria welcomed merchants and traders to come and barter with her and her subjects.  A lot of things on Estrania were quite different from other Goa'uld worlds.  Even before she started the Tok'ra movement, Egeria believed that giving her people a large measure of freedom and the ability to enjoy their lives would make them worship her out of respect and love rather than fear."

"Yeah, well, I screwed up.  I'd gone into the temple without an offering, which was considered an act of offense and insult against Egeria.  After I apologized profusely and explained that I didn't know the laws, she decided to be lenient.  Instead of a harsher punishment, she chose to make me a slave for one year."


Daniel told Jacob about his escape attempt, then went on to recount how, after being there almost a month, Egeria decided to make him a palace slave.

"I wondered about when it was that she would start seeing the light, so to speak," he said.  "I was able to calculate that it was going to be pretty soon, within a few years.  I kept thinking that, if it happened while I was there, she'd let me go free."

Daniel's mind went back to the true beginnings of his relationship with the Goa'uld queen.  "Much to my surprise, Egeria and I began developing a friendship.  Even at the beginning, she was a lot different from every other Goa'uld I've met or heard about.  As more time passed, and the more our friendship developed, the greater those differences became."  Daniel paused for a moment.  "I'd been there for around three and a half Earth months when Egeria told me that she thought of me as one of the only true friends she'd ever had."


"Yeah.  I was pretty blown away."  He paused again.  "That was the day I got my idea."

"What idea?"

"I decided that it couldn't hurt if I started to, um, sort of . . . steer her in the right direction."

Jacob stared at him.  "Daniel, are you saying that you tried to get Egeria to change her thinking regarding the host and symbiote relationship?"


"That was awfully dangerous.  Most Goa'uld would have had you killed for even suggesting something like that."

"I know, but I knew that, eventually, she was going to think that way, so I figured it was worth the risk.  And . . . and it worked."

"What?"  There was surprise in Jacob's voice.

"It worked."

Daniel told Jacob about the things he said to Egeria in his efforts to get her to talk to her host.  He recounted when she finally took the step and decided that it was not an unpleasant experience.  He then went on to tell the rest of the story, leaving out the most personal things, like Egeria's love for him, her request that he provide the DNA for the symbiotes, his death, and the night that she did get the DNA.  He ended his account with the birth of the first Tok'ra and her setting him free.

As he fell silent, Jacob simply stared at him for a very long time.  When the silence was finally broken, it was by Selmak.

"Daniel, if what you say is true, then, in this version of history, the Tok'ra owe in large part their existence to you."

Daniel's gaze dropped to the hands he had folded in his lap.  "There's . . . there's more."


"If you weren't already sitting down, I'd tell you to do so now."  Daniel took a deep breath.  "It . . . it was my DNA that Egeria used for the first batches of larvae.  I don't know how many she got out of it, but she said that, at the very least, it would be several hundred."

"Holy Hannah!"

Daniel almost laughed at hearing those words spoken with Selmak's voice.

Jacob took over from Selmak, who was reeling from the news.  "Daniel, this is. . . .  Selmak has no words, and I'm struggling for ones, too.  Do you realize that Selmak was one of the first Tok'ra spawned by Egeria?  It means that your DNA is within him.  It is also a part of several others who still live, including High Councillor Per'sus."

Daniel had been wondering if Selmak was among the Tok'ra spawned with his DNA.  Wow, that was so . . . mind-blowing, that the symbiote inside the man before him contained his genetic code and might even be one of the symbiotes he saw in that tank.  He thought about the especially curious one that played with his hand.  Could it be?  No, that would probably be too much of a coincidence.

"There's one more thing," he said.  "I'm assuming Selmak has read the copy of the things that Egeria wrote just before Ra captured her."


"Does he recall the last few sentences?"

"I am afraid not.  It has been centuries since he read it."

Daniel quoted the words from memory.  "She was talking about me, Jacob.  Selmak probably doesn't remember this, but, in the west garden, there was a statue of a scholar.  The inscription on it was in an ancient form of the Etruscan language and said, 'To my dearest, most trusted friend.'  That dedication was to me.  The thing is that that quote in your records was already there when I came here and read the history the first time, before I went back in time.  Now, I don't pretend to know much about time travel, but I can't think of anything else that would mean except that I didn't alter history when I went back, I repeated it, like . . . like some kind of gigantic loop in time.  I did it all before, went back in time, met Egeria, and guided her into creating the Tok'ra."

Selmak took over.  "If you are right, Daniel, it means that if it were not for you going back in time and making the decision to guide Egeria, the Tok'ra would never have come to be."

Daniel shook her head.  "I don't think so, Selmak.  I think that, eventually, Egeria would have done it on her own.  It would have happened a bit later in history, but I really think it would have happened even without me."

"That could be, Daniel, but love can be a great motivator.  It can make us do things that we never would have done otherwise."  Selmak paused.  "She was in love with you, wasn't she."

Daniel's gaze fell to the floor.  He let out a soft sigh.  "Yeah."

The Tok'ra nodded.  "There are things I've wondered about that make sense to me now.  You know how, sometimes, a parent can have a favorite among their children?  Well, from as far back as I can recall, Egeria always treated the first ones of us just a little differently, especially the ones she spawned on that first day, which she said marked both one of the brightest and one of the saddest moments of her life."

Selmak's last words upset Daniel.  It hurt to think of Egeria looking upon that day that should have been one of triumph and celebration as one also of sorrow.

"She once said something else that really puzzled me," Selmak told him.  "She said that she could see our father in some of us."

That made Daniel blush brightly.  "Selmak, I-I'm not your father."

The Tok'ra smiled.  "I do know that, Daniel.  I am aware of how it works."  He became serious again.  "But I do think that, in Egeria's eyes, you were.  Of course, she knew better than anyone that, technically, that's not true, but we did carry a part of your DNA, just like a human son or daughter, and, metaphorically speaking, you could say that you are our father in the same way that some man who brings about the creation of some object or concept is called its father."

Daniel recalled what Egeria had said about the Tok'ra being his children as much as they were hers.

When the Tok'ra spoke again a few seconds later, it was with Jacob's voice.  "So, why didn't you tell the SGC about this?  This is a big deal, something that people involved in the Stargate Program would definitely want to know."

"I didn't say anything because of that time travel device.  You do know about the trouble we had with rogue members of the NID stealing alien technology, don't you?"

"Yes.  As you are aware since you were one of the lead diplomats, that was disclosed during the Earth/Tok'ra treaty discussions."

"Well, we haven't caught them all.  In fact, we probably barely scratched the surface with Makepiece, Maybourne and the others.  Think about what people like that would do with a device that could send them back to any time in history."

"I am, and it's a scary thought."

"Yeah.  I decided that I couldn't take the chance that, even if we hid it away somewhere, they'd get their hands on it."

Jacob nodded.  "I have to agree.  It would be too big of a risk."

Daniel stared closely at Selmak.  "It's also too big of a risk for the Tok'ra to know about it.  You've had trouble in the past with spies in your ranks, and you've got one here right now."

"Tanith.  He was sent out on a bogus assignment to keep him from finding out about this mission."

"Well, what if he found out about that thing?  What if some spy you don't know about found out?  What would a Goa'uld do to get hold of a device that they could use to go back in time and arrange things so that they achieved ultimate power?"

"I don't think there's anything that they wouldn't do."


Jacob frowned deeply.  "You're right, Daniel.  This is something that no one can know about."  The frown deepened even more.  "That device needs to be destroyed."

"I thought about that.  Of course, at the time, I had no idea how I could sneak back to the planet to do it.  But then I thought about what the future might bring.  What if some horrible calamity struck, like the Goa'uld attacking Earth?"

"You're thinking that the device could be used to go back and undo it."


"That may not be possible.  As you said yourself, your trip back in time didn't change history; you were just repeating what you'd already done before."

"Yeah, we sort of did that once before when we went back to 1969.  We'd obviously been there previously since General Hammond knew to give Sam that note so that his past self would get it and help us.  Sam and I talked about it afterwards, and she said that there must have been a first time, a beginning of the loop, when we didn't get any help from Hammond.  So, wouldn't the same thing apply this time, too?"

Jacob smiled.  "I'm afraid that the whole time travel thing gives me a headache.  Unlike SG-1, the Tok'ra have no experience with it."

"Yes, well, it's starting to become a habit for us.  First, there was the trip back to 1969, then that incident with the time loop caused by that Ancient device on P4X-639, and, now, this.  I have to wonder what's next on the time travel agenda."

Jacob let out a little chuckle.  "The point I was going to make was that it may not be possible to make big changes to the timeline."

"But you can make little ones?  Like changing things so that someone helps us get home from 1969?  Not to sound conceited or anything, but if we never got back home, I can think of a few pretty big things that would have happened a lot differently, like, for example, the Replicator problem."

The Tok'ra nodded.  "Point taken.  I suppose I'm just trying to make a case for destroying that thing.  Leaving it there to be stumbled upon by a Goa'uld or some other person who happens to go there makes me really nervous, although it's been sitting there for several thousand years without being discovered . . . except by you."

Daniel thought about it.  It did make him a bit nervous, too, especially since, apparently, the Goa'uld sensor no longer worked.  But to destroy it would also destroy their ability to reverse some calamitous event that might take place in the future.

"What if we took it apart?" he suddenly asked.

"Took it apart?"

"Yeah, dismantled it and hid the pieces here and there."

"Hmm.  That could work, that is if there's a way to take it apart without damaging it."

"Well, I guess the only way to know would be to go there and look at it."

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