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5. Team Building

"All right, can you tell me anything new?" Gibbs asked, when they were all gathered in the squad room.

"Not much, unfortunately. Your prisoners are pretty stubborn," O'Neill said.

"If you let me talk to them alone, I can get them to tell me everything they know," Teal'c said.

"Ah, thanks, Teal'c. I don't think we need that. Not yet, anyway," O'Neill said, smiling a little. "Do we have anything on Selkhet?"

"Not really. No one has seen her," McGee said. "We got the tape from another external surveillance video sent over just an hour ago, but the quality is bad, so it is going to need some work."

"Just go work on it, probie," Gibbs ordered.

"Carter, you can help him with that," O'Neill said.

"Yes, sir," Sam answered, getting up.

"Do you need my help?" Abby quickly stood also.

"I need you to help with something else, Abby," Gibbs said.

"Of course, Gibbs," Abby said, throwing a quick look in the direction of where Sam and McGee were sitting, working together at the computer.

"Did you pull any fingerprints off the artefact?" Gibbs asked.

"Only those from the prisoners - and one of the dead guys. Our main suspect - 'miss Selkhet' - doesn't appear to have touched it."

"You won't get anything from running her fingerprints anyway. Or those of the others. They're not in any database," Daniel said.

"They're too, ah, sneaky to end up there," O'Neill said, quickly. "And too well connected."

"Just let us handle that," Gibbs insisted.

"I thought I could find you here!" Ducky said, as soon as he stepped out of the elevator and into the squad room.

"Ducky. Got anything for me?" Gibbs asked.

"Maybe. I did another examination of the two dead guys with the pouches, and I found definite signs that those symbiotic creatures can attach themselves in there. I've got no idea how, but there is an area where their nerve- and blood systems are exposed, and I think that's where the creatures connect and somehow can influence their hosts systems. And probably gets nutrients from that as well." He shook his head. "I did some more tests on their living brethren this morning, and their injures are gone! The bullet wounds were superficial, yes, but they are just gone, with only small red areas to show they were ever there."

"That's incredible!" Tony said.

"Not really. That is, after all, the idea. They were created in order to be stronger and better warriors," Freya said.

"They were?" Ducky asked. "What do you know of them?"

"They're super soldiers?" Tony said. "Cool!"

Freya frowned. "Super soldiers?"

"Yeah, you know? Like in the X-Files! Unkillable soldiers with super powers!" Tony grinned and held out his hands dramatically.

"While I do not know what this 'X-Files' is, I find your suggestion unlikely, and you cannot truly believe so yourself. For one thing, you have two dead 'super soldiers' in your morgue," Freya observed, drily.

"Ah, come one! Just run with it! Besides - who knows? Maybe they'll wake up again!" He winked at her. "I have several seasons of X-Files on tape - if you want, I would be happy to watch them with you!"

Freya raised an eyebrow, but just shook her head, smiling a little at him.

"Hey, we've got something here!" McGee called to them.

"You fixed the tape?" Gibbs asked.

"Partially," Sam admitted. "We've got some pictures of the... thieves as they are arriving at the museum."

"The first usable shots still have some damage, and the frames before that is missing, so it looks almost as if they appear out of thin air, in a kind of flash," McGee warned them as he began playing it for them on the big screen.

"What are those dark lines that moves over their faces just at the beginning?" Tony asked.

Sam was grateful that they had only been able to pull frames at the end of where the Goa'uld and Jaffa arrived with transportation rings, when the rings had mostly disappeared. Otherwise it might have been a problem.

"Visual artefacts, caused by overuse of the tape, we think," she said, hoping they believed it.

They all watched as Selkhet and the four Jaffa walked up to entrance where they found the door locked. They took a few steps back, and then one of the Jaffa shot the lock with his staff weapon, blasting a hole so they could easily open the door.

They had only just stepped inside when Lieutenant Commander Paul Simpson came running up to the open entrance, clearly shouting something. Moments later he was hit by a plasma shot coming from inside, then two more shots, throwing him back. He fell down and did not move. Another shot came from inside, but then all turned white and then it was just noise.

"The camera was hit," McGee told them. "This was all we could get off the tape."

"Well, it confirms what we had assumed," Ducky said.

"All right, did anyone have anything else?" O'Neill asked. "Because otherwise I suggest we have some lunch. It's after noon and I haven't eaten since morning."

"I know a great place to eat," Tony told Freya, then turned to Sam. "Why don't you come with me and I'll show you." He smiled at them.

"I will come as well," Martouf said, giving Tony a less-than happy look.

"We'll all go together," O'Neill decided.

"I didn't say anyone could leave for lunch!" Gibbs told them.

"Why is no one hitting on me?" Abby suddenly complained. "All these hot guys, and no one pays any attention to me!" She sent a slightly jealous look at Sam and Freya/Anise.

"What does it mean, to 'hit on'?" Martouf asked, confused. "We are not hitting anyone."

"Coming on to. Showing interest in - romantic and or sexual," Daniel explained, helpfully.

Martouf nodded. "I see. Your language is very difficult." He turned to Abby. "I apologize for not showing you interest in this manner. Where I not committed to the pursuit of a third party, I assure you, I would 'hit' on you."

"As would I," Teal'c added.

Abby smiled widely. "Aww, that's so cute of you!" She ran to Martouf and hugged him, then did the same to Teal'c. "Thank you, both of you!"

Sam's cheeks flushed a light red as Martouf sent her a charming smile.

"All right, I guess it is lunch time anyway," Gibbs said, sighing.


"Anyone know where Freya is?" O'Neill asked upon their return to NCIS. "Didn't she go with you?"

"Yes, uh, she went with Abby - for some shopping," Daniel said. "Clothes."

"Gah!" O'Neill exclaimed, desperately hoping she would not do something to blow their cover. He should not have let her and Daniel ride in the same car as Kate, Tony, and McGee, but there had been no way for all of them to fit in a normal car.

"They'll be back in an hour or so, and we can't really move the case along right now anyway, so what's the rush?" Tony asked, shrugging.

They entered the building, and had only just done so when Gibbs approached them. "What took you so long? The prisoners have escaped!"

"What? How?" O'Neill exclaimed. "What happened?"

"The Metro PD Sergeant - Peterson - had gone in to interview the prisoners while we were at lunch, and the clumsy fool got himself knocked out! That is what happened!" Gibbs grumbled. "The prisoners have disappeared. All exits were guarded, so they must still be on the premises."

"How could that happen? Weren't there guards by the interrogation room?" O'Neill asked.

"Of course there were guards!" Gibbs sighed and shook his head. "Somehow the prisoners got their hands on weapons and got away."

"Was anyone hurt?" Sam asked.

"Several of the guards got bumps and bruises, and one got a flesh wound. Sergeant Peterson has got a concussion, apparently, according to Ducky." Gibbs scoffed. "Suits him for not being on guard - and going in there alone!"

"Ah, he's pretty young and inexperienced, Gibbs," Kate began.

"Why did you let him do it, DiNozzo?"

"Um, Gibbs, I did talk to him, but he said you had given him permission..."

"Me? That's crazy!" Gibbs hesitated. "I think we better talk to him - immediately."

"Where do you keep the zat'nik'tels?" Martouf suddenly asked.

"The what?" Gibbs stared at him.

"The stun weapons you took from the prisoners," O'Neill explained, throwing Martouf a warning look. "If we're taking down the prisoners, they might be useful. You know, so we can still talk to them."

"Agreed. We'll pick them up on the way to Sergeant Peterson. Ducky said he'd taken him to an office with a couch so he could rest for a little while before he went home."

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