Mordant

Title: Mordant
Series: Daniel and Atlantis Series
Year: Future Time
Category: Drama, Crossover (Stargate: Atlantis), Hurt/Comfort, Angst, Alternate Universe, Sad,
Ratings: PG
Pairings: None
Spoilers: 9.09 Prototype, 3.03 Irresistible,
Summary: Daniel starts to feel bitter and mad about how everyone comes to him for help. Jack is not helping since his own life is conflicting with his time with Daniel.
Words: 5,058
Notes: None
Warnings: None

Radek paced around Daniel’s office, trying to think. He didn’t know what to do. He paced back and forth in the office trying to figure out how to tell Jack about Daniel disappearing. He thought the young boy would come back after an hour to two, but it had been five since the nine-year-old boy ran out of his office.

Finally, he decided to go find Jack to tell him what happened.

xXxXxXx

Jack and Elizabeth sat in her office trying to work out a peaceful solution to the NID wanting Daniel. They’d been trying to figure it out for over a year. The NID never put any thought to the fact he might have slipped off to Atlantis with Jack, but they soon would. Hermiod told the NID that no one got aboard the ship without him knowing. He had rigged the sensors so that they didn’t detect Daniel.

You gave us sanctuary and this place was just made a ‘colony’ of Earth. Now I’ve been talking to China and Canada. They both would take us as citizens with no other motives. They agree that Daniel is better off here where he can do the most good.”

Have you talked to Daniel about this?” Elizabeth asked. Jack shook his head. “Why?”

He’s so busy doing other things. I try to get him to stop, but he just talks about how he has to get it done. He’s a nine-year-old kid that works for a living. If he didn’t go nuts because the information in his head, I would make him stop.”

Yes, we remember well what happened when you made Daniel stay in his room and not work for a few days. I don’t suggest you do it again. Not until he has better control of the information in his head. He can’t control it yet.”

Who knew that Sheree would act against us,” Jack said with a sheepish grin on his face, they had all forgot that Sheree would protect Daniel. Elizabeth opened her mouth to talk just as Radek knocked on the door and entered. Jack tipped his head back. When he saw it was Radek, he jumped up out of the chair. “Zelenka?”

He ran from the lab. A few people asked for his help. He blew up at them. Mostly yelling in language none of us knew. He reminds me of Rodney. I recognized the Czech word for incompetent. I had hoped he would come back. That was five hours ago. I’m becoming worried.”

Have you tried reaching him on the comms?” Elizabeth asked. Radek nodded.

What about that damn cat of his? Seen it around?”

No, no one has. I checked your personal rooms. Nothing. He’s a rather resourceful child isn’t he?”

He can be. I swear that when he was littled they didn’t get rid off all that is Daniel Jackson. He’s still as stubborn and as bull headed as he used to be,” Jack said as he started out of Elizabeth’s office.

Don’t yell at him too much.” Jack waved his acknowledgement. He wandered along the halls checking everyone of Daniel’s favorite hiding spots. The last place he had checked was the Navas bay. Daniel was sitting atop his personal Navas. That particular Navas had imprinted itself on Daniel. No one else could fly it.

Hey, Danny,” Jack said. Daniel didn’t answer him. He didn’t even turn around. Jack didn’t approach him. He didn’t want to scare him in case some new power had developed. Daniel had scared them all with the last power that had developed. Jack remembered a year ago, when the kid had found something in the system. He had started jumping around. Seconds later, all the papers in the room had started flying around. When Daniel had calmed down, the papers stopped flying around. Since then no other powers had cropped up, but Jack was scared to find out. Jack remembered a file Elizabeth had received that talked about the powers that a clone of Anubis had, healing, telepathy, telekinesis, among others.

Jack wait a few minutes and when Daniel didn’t acknowledge him, he stepped closer.

Danny?”

I’m fine, Jack. I just want to be alone.”

Zelenka is worried about you.”

So? I don’t care. I’m sick of working. I just want a break.”

I’m sure Halling wouldn’t mind you going for a visit?”

I’m sure. Can I go?”

Yes, you can. I’ll talk to Elizabeth. Why don’t you go find some dinner?”

Sure, Jack. I’ll see you later.” Jack watched Daniel move down from the top of the Navas then head out the door. Jack shook his head. He was just glad that Daniel was able to have his mornings and evenings free.

xXxXxXx

Don’t you even care?” Daniel asked as he sat on the balcony of one of the spires in the city. Jack was standing behind him. It was only a week later and Daniel hated that Jack had found him again when he wanted to be alone. “You don’t talk to me anymore. You don’t care.”

I care, Danny. I love you,” Jack said. Daniel snorted and pulled his knees to his chest.

They act like they can’t live without me.”

You are our expert on the technology around this place.”

I also want to do other things.”

Listen, I have to go. There’s a meeting I need to be a part of. Daniel, you have your mornings and evenings free. What more do you want?” Jack didn’t wait for an answer. He just left. Daniel huffed and pulled his knees closer.

I don’t have my mornings anymore and half my evening is spent answering questions over the radio, Jack. Not that you care. Or even want to care.”

xXxXxXx

Jack, what did you do?” Daniel asked as the machine in front of him powered down. He turned around and saw that Jack was looking sheepish. He sighed turned back around and tried to turn on the machine again. It didn’t work. “Jack!”

What? I was thinking about Earth. I remembered Carter and Teal’c.” Daniel looked at Jack and set down the data pad in his hand. He knew what had happened. Jack had been thinking about Earth and his friends, and that caused a surge in his mind. That caused the gene to affect the Ancient equipment in the area.

The Odyssey is doing an extra supply run this month. Some scientific equipment that we need. You can step through the ‘gate and then come back with it.

I am not leaving you, Daniel.”

I’m safe here, Jack. You miss home. Go back for a while.” He turned back around to look at the device. He muttered under his breath, “Or stay there.”

We still don’t know if there are NID agents waiting here for you to be alone and vulnerable.”

You don’t think I can be protected by John, Ronon, Teyla, and Aiden?”

No, I think that you still run off and can get into trouble. No way, Daniel.” Daniel just shrugged and started working again. Jack sat back in the small workroom. Daniel had asked for his help, but it seemed he didn’t want it anymore. After a few minutes, he decided to leave Daniel to his work.

Jack wandered around the city. He didn’t know what was wrong with Daniel. The kid worked less than he did. He spent hours in the morning playing with Ronon and Aiden. Finally, Jack went for dinner. He didn’t see Daniel in a corner of the mess hall with a group of scientists around him. Or the machine in front of the boy with his half eaten food tray shoved to the side.

xXxXxXx

You are a little brat. You know that?” Jack screamed at Daniel. He had come back to their quarters and found the doors locked. Daniel knew better than to lock him out of their rooms. When Jack finally found a way in the rooms, Daniel was just sitting on the couch working. Jack immediately screamed at him and the fight had started.

I didn’t lock the doors, Jack. I was sitting here typing. Why would I lock them?”

Then you had Sheree do it.”

No, I didn’t, Jack. She doesn’t do everything I ask of her. She has to think of the city and its people first.” Jack just growled and stalked closer to Daniel. Daniel pushed his laptop from his lap and stood up to meet him, all four feet three inches of Daniel standing in front of Jack’s height of six feet two inches.

Is that it? Sheree knows more about the people of the city and she doesn’t need you as much? You miss the attention that much so you are acting out.” Jack stepped closer so that Daniel had to tip his head back to see Jack’s face. “Maybe that’s why your parents came back to America. So that they could put you in school and get the bratiness out of you.”

Jack?”

Oh, that’s right. You can’t remember that. You can’t remember the last thirty years of your life. You know I am getting sick of dealing with your attitude. You’re a little kid that can’t accept when he’s not the center of attention. I came by to tell you that the Asgard need me. Thor doesn’t want to risk you getting hurt so you can’t go. I don’t know how long I will be gone.” Jack turned from Daniel and went to the door. He opened it and left with no words to Daniel. Jack walked to the control room. He wanted to calm down from talking to Daniel so he decided to pace for a few minutes. To any one it would seem like he was upset about having to go with the Asgard.

Jack?” Elizabeth asked. Jack was pacing in the control room. Elizabeth didn’t know why he was in the ‘gate room. Finally, Jack stopped pacing and he looked at her.

Thor contacted me a little while ago. He needs my help with something. I have no clue how long I will be gone. I’ve already talked to Daniel. He’s fine with this,” Jack said. He waved at Elizabeth as an Asgard beam enveloped him. Elizabeth stared in shock. She had never known Jack to be that curt with anyone. Over the past couple of months, Jack seemed to anger quickly, but he never lashed out so no one paid any attention. Maybe they should have.

Elizabeth was just about to ask someone to find Daniel when he came running into the ‘gate room. His face was tear-streaked, and he was out of breath. When he saw that the ‘gate was shut down, he started crying again. He turned around and fled the room. He ran into Rodney in the hall and fell down. He shrugged out of Rodney’s helping hands as they tried to right him and took off. Rodney looked confused. Daniel had never cried in public before. Rodney looked up at Elizabeth.

Elizabeth?”

I don’t know.”

Doctor Weir, where is General O’Neill?” Sheree asked over the speakers.

He just left with Thor. We have no idea when he will be back.”

Oh, dear. I cannot find Daniel. He is hiding himself from me. General O’Neill said a few things to him. I do not wish to play them back to everyone.”

Why didn’t you stop General O’Neill?” Rodney asked.

I do not monitor their rooms all the time. Daniel and General O’Neill both wanted privacy. Then General O’Neill disappeared, followed by Daniel. I played back the recording device in their room. It is most disturbing.”

Doctor Weir, this is Teyla. Ronon and I were sparring and Daniel came running into the room. He is crying and inconsolable. Do you know what is wrong?”

Not yet. Sheree was just explaining everything to us. I’ll let you know.”

I will wait.”

Sheree why don’t we go to my office? Rodney, call John have him meet us there now.” Rodney nodded and clicked his radio. Twenty minutes later, Rodney, John, and Elizabeth were seated around the desk in Elizabeth’s office.

I shall play back what General O’Neill and Daniel said to each other.”

They listened to the play back intently. Rodney’s reaction was the strongest. He wanted to rip Jack’s head off for what he had said to Daniel. John was right behind him, but he was more worried about why Jack had said what he had. Elizabeth showed almost no reactions and thought about the idea that she and Carson had been thinking about for the mood swing of Jack. She knew that his reactions and actions weren’t enough for her to make him do anything that he didn’t want to do, but she wanted to. She wanted to get Daniel totally away from Jack and safely under the care of someone else.

What is most disturbing is that his heart rate was normal. He wasn’t excited at all. He was calm and collected. Yet, his words…I guess I am not used to humans from Earth.” Sheree made a sound like a sigh and then there was nothing from her.

My god,” Elizabeth gasped. John looked at Rodney and Elizabeth in shock.

I’ll find Seshat and take her to him.” Rodney stood up and left the office. John stood up as well.

I’ll go see how he’s doing.”

And I’ll try contact Thor or Hermiod. Hopefully before they are out of range.” Elizabeth went to the control room and had the tech open a channel to the Asgard frequency. The ship could have left the galaxy by then. She didn’t know which one they had been using.

Calling the Asgard ship, I need to talk to General O’Neill immediately. It’s a matter of great importance. Asgard ship, please respond.” Elizabeth waited and repeated the message every few minutes. When twenty went by with no reply, she had them shut down the link. Elizabeth sighed.

Ma’am?” A voice queried.

I think that we are going to have some problems.”

What is going on?” Chuck asked.

General O’Neill left on a mission with the Asgard. In his place, he left a very distraught Daniel and a mess to be cleaned up. Please tell Carson that when General O’Neill gets back, he has free rein with him. I want his body scanned for everything. This isn’t like him.”

Yes, Ma’am.”

I’ll be with Colonel Sheppard and his team. They are trying to calm Daniel down.”

I’ll make sure that no one bothers your team unless it’s an emergency.”

Thank you.”

Ma’am, what did General O’Neill say to Doctor Jackson?”

He called him a brat and said that he was sick of Daniel.”

That doesn’t sound like him, Ma’am. Maybe there is an explanation?”

No, it doesn’t, but it’s what he said. Daniel has been more prone to disappearing from the labs lately. I think it’s because he misses General O’Neill. From what I understand, he hasn’t been around their living quarters as much.” Elizabeth nodded at the tech, and she walked out of the control room. She moved to the closest transporter and made her way to the sparring room. When she entered, she found Rodney, John, and Teyla sitting in a half circle around Daniel and Ronon. Daniel was sitting in Ronon’s lap. His face buried in Ronon’s neck. She could hear the sobs from the doorway. Seshat was sitting beside Daniel, rubbing her face in his side. John looked up and saw her. He stood up.

He’s not doing too well. We can’t get him to talk or anything. He just sits there and cries. He hasn’t acknowledged anyone but Ronon, and he is scaring us.” John turned back to look at the child and watched as he slowly cried himself to sleep. “Ronon wants to take him to the mainland. Ford’s there helping with some things on assignment. I said I would fly them.”

Go ahead. Whomever he attaches himself to will be grounded. We still need ZPMs, and your team is best at finding them.”

Yes, Ma’am. I think that it will be Ronon.”

I think so as well. You can leave when you are ready. I want Ronon to keep an eye on him. He’s almost ten pounds under weight for his age. If he doesn’t eat, he needs to be brought back so that he can be given supplements through an IV.”

Yes, Ma’am. I think we will leave immediately.”

Good luck.”

Thanks.” John walked over to Ronon and talked to him for a few seconds. Ronon nodded and stood up. Seshat jumped to Rodney. Elizabeth frowned. She couldn’t wait to give General O’Neill a piece of her mind.

xXxXxXx

Daniel woke up in a small tent, and he didn’t know where he was. He rolled over and saw Ronon sitting at the front of the tent. Ronon looked at him and smiled. Daniel smiled back. A cup was handed to him. Daniel smelled the freshly made coffee in it. Daniel smiled at Ronon and took a sip. He remembered the fight that he had got into with Doctor Lam on Earth and then Doctor Beckett on Atlantis about his coffee drinking. In the end, he won out. He was allowed three cups a day until he was fifteen, and then he would be allowed as much as he wanted. Of course, during the day he drank more than three. No one monitored how much he drank, and sometimes when he was upset, people gave him a lot more without caring.

Feeling better?” Ronon asked once Daniel had drunk most of the cup. Daniel nodded. Ronon smiled.

Sheppard left us here with Ford for a few days.”

I don’t want to be here on the mainland. I want to go back to Atlantis,” Daniel said. Ronon frowned.

I think you’ll be better off here on the mainland.”

I don’t care. I want to go back to Atlantis. You are not my father! My father is dead!” Daniel screamed the last parts and stood up. He pushed past Ronon on his way out of the tent. Aiden started towards him, but Daniel just went the other direction. Aiden frowned at him and stopped walking. Ronon exited the tent as Daniel stopped at the edge of the clearing. He knew that he wasn’t allowed to go past there. Even thought that part of the mainland was settled, there were still strange creatures that could harm him.

Daniel, I sent a message to Atlantis. In four hours, a jumper will come to get you,” Ronon called. Daniel nodded so that Ronon knew he heard. He just wanted to go back to Atlantis and work. He wanted to forget.

xXxXxXx

Two days later, Daniel was sitting in his room on his bed when a knock came at his door. He thought the door open and Elizabeth stepped into the room.

Hermiod was finally able to track down General O’Neill…”

I don’t care,” Daniel interrupted. Elizabeth frowned but continued on.

General O’Neill refuses to speak with anyone on Atlantis, until his mission is done.”

I see. I’m sure that he will make it back in due time. I bet you can’t wait for him to get back so that he can help you with the mission works ups.”

Don’t you miss him, Daniel?”

No.” Daniel stood up from his bed and walked over to his desk. He opened up his laptop and started typing. Elizabeth exited the room. She didn’t know how to fix what had happened between the man and this small boy. She made her way back to her office. She left a message with Thor but had yet to hear back from him.

When she dialed Earth for a check in, she found out the life support system on the Daedalus needed an overhaul, and it wouldn’t be back to Atlantis for two weeks, that meant that the few things that Daniel wanted from Earth wouldn’t get there and help his spirits. Elizabeth sighed and asked John, Aiden, Rodney, Teyla, and Ronon to come to her office. She knew that Daniel wouldn’t react to the news, but an eye would have to be kept on him.

Two Weeks Later:

Do you know how often I told people not to bother me during the mornings? I may have Ancient knowledge in my head, but I want to do things for myself. Every one of the scientists who asked for my help said that it was only going to take a few minutes then he would be gone. Then there were the ones who said that I had enough time playing and I was needed at that instant to do things. I tried to tell Jack, but he wouldn’t listen. He doesn’t even spend any time with me. He was always doing other things. I don’t have alone time anymore. I haven’t read a book fully through in three months. I get a few pages read, and then a crisis develops in the lab.” Elizabeth sat back in her chair. Daniel stood up from his seat and turned away from her. “Rodney and Radek try, but they can’t control everyone. I haven’t eaten a meal without someone asking for my help in weeks.”

Daniel, I’m sorry. I didn’t know.”

No, because no one cares. Ronon has scared off a few, but he can’t be there every second of the day. Anytime I say ‘no’ to them, they say that I’m a little brat who doesn’t do his job. When I tell them that I’ve been working for seven hours straight with no rest, they just tell me to suck it up. The Wraith are out there, and we need to defeat them. Not all of the scientists are like this. Now, I am taking Seshat and Ronon and we are going in my Navas. I would rather go alone, but I know that it won’t be allowed. Ronon will give me the space I need.”

Go, I’m sure by the time that you get back, General O’Neill will be back on Atlantis.”

Rodney, Radek, and I want permission to start on the ‘gate project that was denied last year. With the problems Daedalus had, we think that your approval will go a long way with the IOA. We need supply lines between Earth and Atlantis.”

This is the project where Rodney wants to harvest unused ‘gates from all over the galaxy and take them to planets between Earth and Atlantis?” Elizabeth asked. Daniel nodded.

Rodney thinks the whole trip can be made in half an hour, much easier for personnel transfer and smaller supply runs. And Atlantis wouldn’t have to lose its leader if the IOA wants to talk to you in person.”

The IOA doesn’t want to lose our teams that are out there looking for ways to defeat the Wraith.”

We won’t have to. Rodney and his team will be out there, but most of the time the planet is a bust. There is nothing there. Those ‘gates can be harvested by a team of scientists and a few soldiers. I can fly the jumper.”

They sent you to do this because they think I’ll agree because of what’s happened to you.”

No, they think that I am the best to pitch it. Rodney and I thought it up. Rodney also thinks that the scientists will get their own feet under them if I have a project taking up all my time. This project would take all of my time and make it so that if I say ‘no’ they have to take it for an answer. I never asked to be treated as an adult. I never asked to be treated as a child. I wanted to be treated with respect.”

Daniel, I’ll talk to them.”

It won’t help. Rodney, Ronon, and Radek have all done it. It doesn’t help.” Daniel stood up from his seat and moved to the door. As he left, Elizabeth followed him.

Daniel, why don’t you stay here? You can make your request to the IOA yourself.” Daniel nodded and stepped up to the control consol. After Elizabeth went through the normal procedure, Daniel stood in the background, waiting for Elizabeth to finish. “General, is Mr. Woolsey there?”

He can be here in a minute. I’m sending Walter to look for him.”

Thank you, General,” Elizabeth said into the comm. She turned to Daniel and motioned for him to step up. A few minutes later, Woolsey’s voice was heard over the comm.

Doctor Weir, you can go ahead.”

Actually it’s one of our science members who wishes to talk to you.” Daniel started laying out the plan again, revised a little from the last time it had been brought before the IOA. When Daniel was finished, Woolsey started speaking.

Who is this?”

Daniel Jackson, Mr. Woolsey.”

Oh, I see. I’ll bring this before the IOA and will send our answer the next time that Doctor Weir checks in.”

Thank you.”

Now there is someone else who would like to talk to you, Daniel.”

Daniel?” Jack asked over the comm. Daniel just turned and walked away. “Daniel?”

General, he left.”

Dammit! Elizabeth, please get him to come back.”

I won’t make him do something that he doesn’t want to do. He’s made his opinion on you clear. After hearing what you said to him, I’m not sure I would accept an apology if I were him anyway. And how are you on Earth?”

They didn’t feel like transporting me all the way back. When Thor found out that the Daedalus was leaving, they dropped me on Earth. Just tell him that I am sorry. I acted like an ass.”

Why?”

Why what?”

Why did you act like an ass?”

You really want me to say it in front of everyone?”

Yes.”

Fine. I resented him a little bit. My life here on Earth was over the moment I fled to Atlantis. I couldn’t just go back to it. I couldn’t just leave him and we can’t come back to Earth. The NID are still out there, even in small numbers. The ones responsible are gone but who knows who else is after him. There’s also the Trust.”

I see. He never asked you to do anything that you did. All you had to do was ship him off here. Hermiod said that he could have made sure that Daniel was fed and cared for on his trip here.”

He’s Daniel Jackson. He was my best friend for over eight years. I couldn’t just leave him, and I never should have done it in a fit of rage. No matter what the reasons I actually left.”

I’m glad you’ve acknowledged that, but what about Daniel? If he doesn’t want you here and can’t stand being around you. I won’t let you back on Atlantis.”

I know. I just want to talk to him. Let me talk to him.” Elizabeth looked up and saw Daniel standing a few feet away.

He can come back if he wants. As long as he stays away from me.”

I am your adopted father, Daniel. You can’t tell me what to do. Let’s not fight, Danny. I am so sorry. I don’t know why I said what I said. It just came out.”

No, you are not my adopted father. You are someone who adopted me. It’s no different from what happened to the other Daniel. I’ve read what happened to him. If you can leave me so easily, I don’t want you anymore. You did what every one of his foster parents did. Once you got sick of me, you tossed me away.”

Daniel, I’m sorry.”

Say it a few more times, Jack. Maybe someone will believe you. I want proof, not words, Jack.” Daniel nodded at Weir before he left the control room again.

Is he still there?” Jack asked.

No. He left. Jack, I’m worried about him. He really needs something good to happen. Try to make sure the IOA approves the ‘gate harvesting plan. He needs it.”

I’ll do my best. I’ll try to get Carter to explain it though. She would do much better than I.”

That’s fine. How is Colonel Carter?”

She and her new husband are just fine. Shanahan and she made up a short while after her father’s death.”

That’s good to hear.”

Yes, she’s also taking time off. They want a kid. It’ll be good for her.”

I must go, General. I have other matters to attend to.”

See you soon, Elizabeth.”

Try to think of a way to say you’re sorry that he will believe. I’d hate to see you lose him and him lose you.”

I will.”

Eighteen Days Later:
When Jack returned to Atlantis, he didn’t get the greeting in the ‘gate room he was used to. He didn’t feel the joy of hearing his kid running to him or see his kid jumping into his arms. He was met with the noise of normal operations for the ‘gate and control rooms. Elizabeth stepped forward. She was the only one there to meet him. There wasn’t a kid waiting for him. Even to watch him come home.

Welcome home, General. Report to Doctor Beckett, you’ve been gone a while and need a checkup.”
The End

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