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Fic, Stargate SG-1, Invasion, NC-17, 15/21

15. Learning About the Aliens


They were currently landed on the surface of the Moon, and was working inside the teltac's cargo deck.

Lantash went to pick up a Tok'ra scanning device. He spent some moments adjusting it. "Try running through the same range of frequencies again. Perhaps we can detect some reaction when we hit the right frequency."

Sam again went through all the frequencies close to the tone that had previously disrupted the mimetic device, while Lantash scanned the alien. The alien itself stoically ignored them, clearly well aware it could not escape the fastenings that held it when the stasis chamber was not activated.

"Anything?"

He hesitated, then shook his head. "Yes and no. There is a very faint signal, almost so faint that it could just be noise. There seemed to be a small fluctuation, but... I can't be sure. Could you run through those frequencies again, and increase the intensity?"

"Sure. Ready?"


"This isn't working, and my ears are starting to hurt from all this noise!" Sam complained. She threw a look at the alien. "I think the smug son of a bitch is laughing at us!"

"I, too, would appreciate a break from this," Lantash admitted. "I do think we are on the right track. Whenever your disruption device hits one of a small number of frequencies, there are small fluctuations in that faint signal coming from the alien."

"Very faint. It could just be random noise," Sam said.

"Yes, but I do not believe that to be the case. I will feed this data to the computer, and then let it analyze it. We should go and get something to eat meanwhile."

Sam sighed, but nodded. "Agreed." She flipped the switch that activated the stasis chamber again, and the alien became immobile.

Lantash connected the scanner to a small computer with a holographic screen, and typed in a few commands. "The data will transfer and I have set up the analysis."

They grabbed a couple sandwiches and a bottle of water each, then went to the flight deck and sat down.

For a while they ate in silence, with Martouf and Lantash clearly discussing something amongst themselves, and Sam looking at the scenery outside.

"You know, it is strange being here," she said.

"I am sorry?" Martouf asked, clearly not having paid attention.

"On the Moon. While growing up, and later too - actually until I got involved with the Stargate project - I wanted to be an astronaut."

Martouf nodded. "Yes, I remember Jacob telling me. People from your world who travel to space."

"Yes. Well, at most the Moon, as things currently stand." She smiled. "Anyway, I've travelled much further than that, but it's still, well, nice to actually have made it here too."

He smiled back. "I understand." His eyes became unfocused for a moment, as he talked something over with Lantash. "Would you like to take a short walk on the surface?"

"You mean, outside?"

"Yes. There are usually a couple spacesuits - for the eventuality of someone needing to go outside for a repair job."

"Wow." She grinned. "Yeah, sure. I'd like that." Her expression turned serious. "But we ought to continue working on the device."

"It - and the alien - will go no where. We will just be gone for a short time."

She nodded slowly. "Yes. Let's do it!"


Sam took a careful step out of the teltac. As soon as she left the vessel, the artificial gravity was no longer affecting her, and she found herself in the 0.17 G.

She walked a few steps, then made a small jump, landing slower and softer than she would have on Earth. She then made a long jump, almost tumbling, but righting herself at the last moment. She grinned. "This is awesome!"

Martouf smiled when her words came through the communication device in his suit. He took a few springy steps, then made an experimental jump. "Neither Lantash nor I have tried this before either. It is certainly... different."

Sam had jumped ahead with long, jumpy strides. He tried to move faster to catch up with her, but only succeeded in almost falling. He gave Lantash control, when the symbiote insisted he could do better.

Lantash made a few careful steps, then instead started moving with a sort of jumping walk, like Sam did. He quickly caught up with her. "As Martouf said, this is different!" He smiled. "And fun!"

Sam laughed. "Very fun! Your spacesuits are much lighter than ours, making this a lot easier!" She gave him an awkward hug. "Thank you so much for suggesting this, guys!"


When they returned to the teltac, the computer had long since finished the analysis.

"What does it say?" Sam asked, sitting down beside Lantash who was typing something.

"There is in fact a very faint shield around the alien, probably created by their suit. It has been adapted to send out a signal that blocks the frequencies that interferes with their mimicking device. It only becomes active when it is needed, and otherwise lies dormant. That is one of the reasons we didn't discover it - that and the very low energy output."

"Great! Then we can maybe disrupt the shield?"

"It should certainly be possible, we just need to know more about it." He got up to fetch the scanner he had used before, as well as one of another type. He set up one of them so it pointed towards the stasis chamber, then handed the other to Sam after making a small adjustment to its settings. "I am going to try and interfere with the shield. Could you scan it while I do so? The other scanner will send data about the mimetic device to the computer, which we can use to compare with later."

"Sure. Why don't we set up the disruption device to send out the exact tone that should stop the mimetic device from working? Then we can immediately see what's going on too."

Lantash nodded. "We can do that, but I don't expect to have enough success in interfering with the shield yet. Not so much that the tone will get through, so it will merely be a, ah, nuisance."

Sam gave him a wry smile. "The sound is getting on your nerves? Mine too, so let's wait with that."

He gave her a warm smile. "Thank you." He picked up a small device. "Let's get started?"

"Absolutely. Ready when you are."


"All right, so with more power, that should overload the shield," Sam concluded.

"Yes. I will attempt to boost the power with one of the liquid naquadah power cells," Martouf said.

A low buzzing was heard from the communicator lying on the table where they were working.

Sam grabbed it. "Hello?"

"What are you doing? Food has been ready for more than an hour!" O'Neill's annoyed voice sounded from the communicator.

Sam checked the time. "Oops, looks like we forgot the time. Listen, we just want to run one more test, then we'll be back. One hour. Tops!"

"You've been at it since morning. Get back here now, Sam!" Jacob's voice sounded in the communicator as he took it from O'Neill.

Sam rolled her eyes. "Hi dad. We've had some success. We'd just like to see if our finding will work in practicality."

"We will return very soon, Jacob," Martouf said. "The aliens are using a modified forceshield to block the frequencies which disrupts the mimetic device, and we believe we have found a way to interfere with the shields ability to..."

"Not another egghead!" O'Neill complained. "Fine! Finish whatever you're doing, but don't complain that the food is bad! O'Neill out."

"He is angry with us?" Martouf asked. "Egghead?"

"Another word for scientists. Not a nice one." She shook her head. "Never mind, he's always like that. He'll be happy when we get it to work."


"Yes! The shield shuts down!" Sam exclaimed, when Martouf made the third attempt, and activated the small device he was holding. "Wait, I need to try sending the disruption signal also."

"Hurry up! This will not last long!" Martouf warned, looking at the jury rigged interference device.

Sam flipped the switch and a loud tone filled the room. The image of Ferretti flickered for a moment, then disappeared, only to be replaced by the image of the alien, as it looked normally.

"Yes! Success!" Sam said, throwing her arms around Martouf and giving him a tight hug.

Surprised, it took a few moments for Martouf to react, but then he raised his arms to embrace her too. Before he could do so, he let out a low cry and threw the device he had been holding to the ground.

"Ouch!"

"Sorry!" Sam said, embarrassed. "What happened?"

Martouf was looking at his hand, and then at the device on the ground. He sighed. "The device overloaded and became too hot for me to hold. Don't worry - the injury was small, and will quickly heal." He picked up the device, protecting his hand with his sleeve. He looked at it for a moment, then put it down on the table. "It's cooling already."

"We'll worry about the device later. Let me see your hand," Sam said, worried.

"There truly is no reason for concern, Samantha." He held up his hand so she could see.

The palm and fingers were an angry red colour, but except for in one place, the skin was not broken.

Sam let out a sigh of relief. "Let's get something cold for that." She grabbed some napkins and went out to the bathroom and poured cold water over them, then returned.

Martouf had reactivated the stasis chamber, and was studying the small device he had used to overload the forceshield. "I believe the damage can be easily repaired, but we need some other way of shutting down their forceshields - we cannot capture every person we want to test, which is necessary when it has such a short range."

"I'm sure we'll figure something out. Hold out your hand!"

He did, obediently. "Your concern is appreciated, of course."

Sam nodded, gently holding the cold, wet paper towels against his hand. "Better?"

He dipped his head, and Lantash answered. "The cold helps against the pain. I can easily control it, but not having to do so means I can focus on healing." He smiled. "Thank you, Samantha."

She smiled at him, then her gaze went to the alien in the stasis chamber. "Do you think it can understand us when it's not connected via mindlink to a human?"

Lantash considered it, then nodded. "Yes. No doubt it has learned our language from the mindlink."

Sam nodded. "Martouf mentioned you thought they used telepathy to communicate, at least partially. Do you think they can read our minds?"

"No, if they could do that, we would all have been caught long ago."

"You're right." She lifted the wet napkins from Lantash's hand. "I better go pour cold water on these again."

"It is not necessary, Samantha. The wound is almost gone."

She looked down at his hand, where only a slight redness indicated the burn had ever been there.

"Wow! You're incredible at healing!"

"It was a very small injury," Lantash said, but he looked pleased at both the praise and her concern.

She gave his arm a squeeze. "We should return to Earth and get something to eat, before the Colonel calls again."


"Malek and Selmak feels they can take the prototype we made yesterday and make it more effective, hopefully getting it to work across longer distances," Martouf said. "We should attempt to learn more about the alien telepathy while they do that."

"Agreed. Do you have any ideas how to do that? I mean, it's not like we know what to scan for, do we? How much do you guys know about telepathy?" Sam asked, sitting down beside the pilot's seat in the teltac.

It was early morning, not long before sunrise. It had been agreed on that they would not take off or land during daytime, hoping to cut down on the risk of being discovered.

Martouf re-cloaked the ship and they lifted off. "A good deal. As you probably know, much Goa'uld technology is actually partially or wholly thought-controlled."

"Right, I know that, I just didn't think of it. Even the ships are partially controlled that way, especially the ha'tak and the alkesh, correct?"

"Yes. Also, the healing device, the kara'kesh, and the hara'kesh are all thought-controlled - the two latter even has some mind-altering possibilities. Particularly the hara'kesh, which is sometimes used to make someone forget what has transpired, for instance."

Sam nodded. "Yes, I remember the ashrak who was sent after Jolinar, he used his hara'kesh to confuse and make people forget they had seen him. Also, I think Sha're managed to send some sort of communication through the ribbon device - the kara'kesh - that Amaunet used to torture Daniel with."

"So you know these things already. Good, I should have expected you to." Martouf smiled at her before adjusting some of the controls as they sped through the upper part of the atmosphere. "Then you will not be surprised to hear that we also have the technology to scan for telepathic signals. Yes, the frequency will probably be different for these Targs, but that should not be a problem."

"How will we get the, the Targ to send out a telepathic signal? If we're outside of the range of their telepathy, I mean."

Martouf nodded. "Very true. He has no reason to send out the signal." He sighed. "Well, we will scan for it, and if we find nothing, we will have to take the teltac to some place nearer their facilities, and take the alien out of stasis. It is risky, but if we are cloaked and only does so for a short time, we should be able to get away before we are discovered. Hopefully."


"No luck?" Sam asked.

Lantash shook his head. "No. I'm afraid we'll have to risk taking the teltac closer to your planet."

Sam nodded. "Okay. Let's do it."

Lantash activated the stasis chamber again, and they made sure all the tools and instruments they would need were easily accessible and at hand.

"Do you know how to fly a teltac?" he asked. "If we need to get out of here quickly, it might be best if one of us is ready by the controls."

Sam was quiet for a little while before answering, "You know, I was about to say yes, but actually... I don't know if I know." She shook her head.

"You had the ability in the alien simulation?"

She nodded. "Yes, but I don't think I have in reality."

"Perhaps you do. It is very likely that you remembered it, from Jolinar, and that it was the reason why you knew it there."

"Maybe..." Sam said, hesitantly.

"Would you like to try? I promise I will help you."

"Sure, but I fear it'll take a long time to learn it."

"Not if you already know how, but just doesn't actively remember. In any case, I can set most controls to automatic. It will not be difficult for you to learn enough to fly the ship like that, and it could be very useful."

Sam thought for a moment, then smiled at him. "All right. Let me try." She walked to the flight deck and sat down in the pilot's seat. "Let's see... what do I do..." She looked at the various controls, switches, buttons, and other instruments and panels. Uncertain, she touched one of the switches.

"Just relax and don't think about what you are doing. Allow the memories to guide you."

Sam took a deep breath and nodded, then flipped a switch, pushed a button, then moved a lever, before placing her hands on the steering controls. The teltac came to life, and lifted off.

"Wow!" Sam exclaimed.

"Very good!" Lantash said. "Now raise the shields... increase the power... yes, then adjust the angle..."

The teltac slowly rose above the Moon and straightened up. It was soon high above the surface.

"This is great!" Sam grinned.

Lantash smiled at her. "Now activate the cloak."

"How...?" Sam wondered.

He pointed to a switch. "It was added later, so the control for it is somewhat incongruous."

They flew around for a little while, Sam handling most of the piloting without problems.

"Could we try jumping to hyperspace, just for a moment?" she asked.

"Certainly. However, before doing so you must make sure the field is stable."

Sam studied the readout, then slowly turned a tuning dial with one hand, while steering the vessel with the other. "It's difficult... it keeps fluctuating."

"Turn it slowly, allowing it to adjust." He placed a hand over hers, guiding her. The field stabilized. Lantash threw a quick glance at the readout. "Go to hyperspeed now."

One moment the teltac was flying smoothly, then suddenly there was the abrupt jump as they went to hyperspace.

"Yes!" Sam exclaimed. "I can do this!" She gave him a warm smile.

"Of course you can, Samantha. I was never in doubt." Lantash smiled.

They flew on for a few moments without trouble, then turned around and soon took the teltac out of hyperspace.

"Fifteen minutes until we have to decelerate to enter Earth's atmosphere. That's correct, right?" Sam asked, looking at the readout.

"It is," Lantash confirmed. He hit a couple buttons. "The ship is now on autopilot. It will warn us five minutes before we reach the planet. We should go and check that all is ready for our tests."

Sam nodded. "Coming." She got up from the chair, then turned to hug Lantash. "Thank you for helping me fly the teltac!"

"You're welcome." He happily returned her embrace. "It was my pleasure," he murmured against her hair.

Sam pulled back enough that she could look into his eyes. Reacting to what she saw, she kissed him, moving her mouth slowly against his. He returned the kiss after only a moment's hesitation.

A short while later, Sam let go. "Um, sorry. I..."

Lantash frowned. "You have nothing to be sorry for. I was merely caught by surprise. That is why I did not react faster."

"Oh! Um, that's, that's good. I was worried you might not be interested here. In reality, I mean, ah..."

"I assure you, if you fantasized that I wanted you, then you were most certainly correct!" Lantash smiled wryly. "Martouf is admonishing me for being so direct, but it is the truth!" He pulled her close again, his expression turning seductive. "May I kiss you again?"

Instead of answering, Sam wrapped her arms around him again and kissed him. The kiss started out soft and slow, but quickly became more passionate. Lantash pushed his tongue against her lips, and she parted them immediately, tangling her tongue with his.

After some moments, the kiss changed subtly, and Sam realized Martouf was now the one holding her.

Much too short a time later, they were interrupted by the ship's computer, warning them that they were approaching Earth and should go to manual control.

"Damn!" Sam grumbled, reluctantly letting go of Martouf/Lantash.

"Too bad we didn't travel further away from your world before," Martouf observed, going to handle the controls. He sent her a smile. "Ah, I hope you will be amenable to continue this later?"

"Absolutely," Sam said, her cheeks flushing a little.


"I've got it!" Martouf announced. He quickly activated the stasis chamber, stopping the alien from sending any further information to his people.

"Great!"

The teltac had been sitting in a synchronous orbit above Cheyenne Mountain. Sam now piloted the ship upwards, taking it away from Earth.

"Let's hope the Targs did not learn too much about us." He sighed. "It is regrettable that we cannot tell what he said," Martouf observed.

"Well, maybe they didn't hear him at all... wait..." Sam leaned forward to check one of the readouts. "If I am reading this correct, someone just sent up a few fighters from Peterson!"

"That is the airport near Stargate Command, correct?"

"Yes."

"I assume we can take that as proof that our prisoner was heard - and that he sent some information about us." Martouf sighed.

"Well, unless they modded those fighters, there should be no way for them to detect us cloaked." She checked the altitude. "Besides, we're almost out of the atmosphere, so they can't follow us."

"Agreed. The alien also has no way of knowing where our base is, so we are quite safe. Still, I would have preferred we did not have to let them know of the presence of Tok'ra here."

"Not a lot they can do about it." Sam steered the teltac towards the Moon, and they soon reached it. "Are we waiting behind the Moon until the sun sets in Idaho?"

"Yes. That should be soon, I believe?"

She checked the clock. "About one hour. Enough time to get a quick look at that data you gathered. Do you want to take over for the landing?"

"Certainly. However, if you want to, I can teach you?"

"I'd like that - and it's probably a good idea, but not now." She smiled, getting up from the seat. "Maybe when we get the telepathic scrambler to work?"

"Yes, let us do that." Martouf sat down and took over the controls, landing the ship.


"So now we know the frequency the aliens use for their telepathy," Sam concluded.

"Telepathy which is enhanced through a resonator that is built into their suits," Martouf added.

"Okay, so what does that mean? We can block the Targs from communicating?" O'Neill asked.

"Yes - as soon as we build a scrambler we can set up," Sam said.

Jacob nodded. "Sounds good. With your data we've had good success on making a disruption device that works despite the forceshield-block you found."

"Good, and what about that info-leak you talked about?" O'Neill asked.

"Regrettable, but unavoidable. It should not cause us problems," Martouf said.

"I agree," Sam added. "The Targ doesn't know where our base is, and it's not like they didn't already know we're against them, and that they want to catch us."

"True," O'Neill admitted.

"If the aliens are telepathic, could we tap their communication?" Daniel asked.

"Theoretically, but we don't know their language," Malek said.

"What about using those memory recall thingies?" O'Neill suggested. "You guys said you also had some other stuff that works with thought-control."

"True, but..." Martouf shook his head. "The aliens have very different brains, compared to humans - and symbiotes - and their thoughts and telepathy is on a different frequency. None of our technology works with them as it is, though it may be possible to change that. Using some sort of adapter, perhaps, but it will not be a quick change."

"Humans and symbiotes have minds that work the same way?" Daniel asked.

"Of course. Otherwise it would be very difficult for our neural systems to connect, or for us to talk internally," Martouf said.

"The mindlinks - how can they use those if their minds are so different?" Sam suddenly said.

"You are correct. Those devices must have an adapter, which we can possibly use to create one that works in the other direction," Martouf agreed.

"You can play with that later. For now you should just focus on blocking their telepathic signals, and on creating a device that can disrupt those mimicking devices," O'Neill said.

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