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Aberrant: Stargate Universe - Orb of Attraction [Complete]

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October 14

Day One

“I hoped I’d find you here,” Daniel said, entering the ‘library’ as Olivia looked up from the mission report she was reading.

“Yep, you found me,” Olivia said, giving him a warm smile. She was cringing inside though; she had struggled with her hair this morning and she wasn’t sure she looked her best. “What can I do for you?” Thank you brain for not making a classic Freudian and saying ‘do to you’.

Daniel seemed uninterested in her appearance, which was a mixed blessing if there ever was one. “I could use a hand with something, if you have a moment.”

“For you, I always have time,” Olivia said, standing up and putting the mission report back where it belonged. She followed him out of the room, asking, “What’s up?”

As they walked together, Daniel said, “I have some items that SG-16 brought from some ruins on PX9-003. We think they’re Ancient- What’s wrong?” He looked concerned as Olivia shook her head and stopped.

“I haven’t been allowed to touch any artifacts since I caused an invasion of Earth,” Olivia said. Daniel started to laugh, but when she didn’t, he stopped. “I mean, I stopped it,” she added, “but that doesn’t change the fact that I started it, too.”

“Well, you can wear gloves,” he said, then smiled. “I could really use your help. We’ve gotten a lot of stuff coming in lately, and we’re behind, and Jack’s riding me about it.”

It was the smile. Olivia felt herself smile in return, and then she sighed and said, “Ok, ok… I'll help.”

“Thanks,” Daniel said, rewarding her with a wider smile. “I’ll owe you.”

“No, I already owed you one,” Olivia said, quirking an eyebrow at him.

“Did you?” Daniel asked. “I’m pretty sure that you paid me back for everything…”

“No, no… I know that I owe you…”

They argued about it all the way down the hall, Daniel sure that he was right, and Olivia knew that he wasn’t but was unwilling to whip out the ‘but I’m a Specialist’ card on Daniel. Their ‘argument’ was quickly forgotten when Olivia saw the treasures there. “Daniel, did I ever tell you that you’re my best friend?”

“You just did,” he said, grinning at her. “Come on, here’s your gloves. You start at that end, and I’ll get on this one, and we should meet in the middle by dinner.”

It took a little longer than expected; they got delayed when they realized that Olivia was accurately measuring everything with a single glance. Testing her was unquestioned, and that took time. Still, there was no doubt; Olivia could give a fairly accurate measurement of anything she saw. It made them late, and Olivia was rushing to catalog the last thing, a small sphere about the size of a baseball, when the dinner hour arrived. “You got this?” Daniel asked, looking at his watch.

“Yep,” Olivia said, nodding. “If you have to go, go.”

“Thanks,” he said, smiling as he shrugged into his jacket. “I’m having dinner with the team. You know, get together and talk about the good old days while forgetting how bad they were.”

Olivia laughed. “Have fun,” she said, giving him a wave. Then he was gone, and she could focus on her work. This was the most interesting of the artifacts; it appeared to be a puzzle. It was make of intersecting ribbons of metal with writing on them, in Ancient. Carefully, Olivia copied what she could see, even though she had no idea what it said. Olivia peered at it closely through the magnifying glass and realized that one word disappeared under a ribbon. Another moment of study led her to believe that it would move. She tried to give it a little turn; nothing happened.

Frowning, she looked at the parts carefully. “Ah ha,” she said, twisting it in a slightly different direction. Not only did that reveal some more text, which she copied, but it freed up some of the other ribbons, letting them twist. Fascinated, she started to work on the puzzle in earnest. Daniel could translate this for her, later.

A knock on the door interrupted her concentration. Frowning, Olivia looked up to see Daniel. “Are you still here?” he asked, frowning.

“Yeah,” she said. “I was going to catalog this, and I noticed that there was this text. See?”

Daniel came over and looked at the notebook. “This is Ancient, and… it appears to be a story, or… some history. Hard to tell, with so little of it.”

“There’s more,” Olivia said, clearly excited as she stared at the sphere. “I’m going to keep working on it, until I have it all.”

Daniel reached out and plucked it from her hands. “Maybe you should do that in the morning,” he said.

“Morning?” Olivia asked. “But I’ve got hours left this evening.”

Daniel chuckled. “Wow, you did lose time. It’s almost midnight.” She stared at him in shock and he showed her his watch.

“Crap! My team is looking for me by now!” she gasped, hopping to her feet. “Say, can I take this with me?”

“I’d rather you didn’t,” Daniel said. “Not that I don’t trust you, but I’d hate for it to do something to you while you’re sleeping.”

“Oh, I’m sure it’s harmless.” She smiled as she said, clearly believing that.

“Then it can wait until tomorrow,” he said firmly.

She nodded, without really looking disappointed. “Alright. Goodnight, Daniel.”

“Goodnight,” he called, then set the sphere back in the packing box. “I wish everyone had that kind of enthusiasm,” he sighed, then shut out the lights and went home.

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October 15

Day Two

Olivia woke up, and her first thought was the exciting work she was doing on the puzzle. If Daniel was right, then it was important information about the people who had inhabited the ruins, maybe even a summary of their history! There was no telling how much that ball contained, and she couldn’t wait to get back to it.

She raced through her shower and gained fifteen minutes. She went to Daniel’s office, but he wasn’t there. Irritated, Olivia went on to breakfast. She was in the cafeteria before she remembered that she was supposed to call one of her teammates for an escort. Being baby-sat everywhere she went was starting to get on her nerves, but she still called her CO and let him know that she was at breakfast. He wasn’t amused that she was there without an usher, but Olivia was fine and didn’t really want to deal with a fussy Caine. She quickly apologized and promised to never forget again.

The rest of the day’s routine took forever, and Olivia was practically jumping out of her skin by the time she dismissed her lecture. Each hour spent doing something else was time that she couldn’t work on the puzzle. Still, there were things that need to be done, important things, and she knew that the puzzle was secondary. She still itched to work on it, and it was a relief when she finished her lecture and was able to slip back to it.

Daniel smiled at her when she arrived; he’d been translating what she had found, and it was just as fascinating as they had believed. Sadly, the puzzle had started her in the middle, which meant that she was going to have to find the beginning. “I think they wanted us to figure it out,” Olivia said brightly, her hands already curling around the sphere. “We’ll find the start.”

“I think so, too,” Daniel said, nodding.

Both of the historians were quiet as they went to work. Olivia was vaguely aware of Daniel leaving and asking her to lock his door when she left. On she worked, her focus bent to her task.

“Livy?” Declan’s voice broke her out of her reverie and she looked up to see him in the door. Since last night, Daniel’s office had been added to the list of places to look for Olivia if she couldn’t be found. “You missed supper,” he said, lifting the plate he was holding. “And you weren’t in your room. For our session.”

“Oh, god, I lost track of time,” she gasped, her face flushing. Setting the puzzle back in its box, she took the plate from him and inhaled. “Oh, you’re a godsend.”

He smiled at her. “No problem. Want me to walk with you back to your room?”

“Of course,” she said. “We have a session.” Smiling, she locked the lab and left with her teammate, picking at the food he’d brought her.

But as she worked with him, her mind remained on the puzzle.

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October 16

Day Three

Olivia woke up thinking about the puzzle. She knew Daniel wouldn’t be in his office, so she didn’t hurry to get showered. If I took it with me overnight, she thought suddenly, I could get a lot more work done on it. But Daniel had already said no, and Olivia knew that he wasn’t likely to change his mind.

The day dragged again. Her concentration was for crap; her head felt muddled. She didn’t really stop to think about it; she had more important things to do, like work on the puzzle. Her performance in the lecture was particularly poor, but she muddled through it. When Damien asked her, she thought fast and said she was distracted by the puzzle. Then she talked to him about it puzzle until, eyes glazed, he excused himself and let her get to it.

Daniel was happy to see her, as always; he’d been working on the translations all morning and almost had caught up. “Unfortunately, SG-1 is being called out on mission this afternoon,” he told her. “I’ll probably be gone for a day or two, so if you want to move this to the artifacts room where you’ll have access to it without me, go ahead.”

“Thanks,” she said, smiling. “That’ll be a great help.” After he was gone, she set her alarm so she wouldn’t be late for dinner. When it went off, it was an intrusion that she didn’t welcome, but she still put the sphere in her sweater pocket, gathered her notebooks and went to dinner. Everyone was happy to see her, though there was general disappointment when she had to push through dinner and get back to work. Though she didn’t realize it, all she talked about was the sphere, though she didn’t show anyone she had it. She wanted to keep it to herself for now, though she couldn’t have said why. Her friends noted that she seemed withdrawn and subdued.

In the Alien Artifact room, Olivia settled in to work some more. She set her alarm so that she wouldn’t miss her appointment with Declan. But people kept coming in and out of the room, breaking her concentration. By the time her alarm rang, she was very frustrated. She kept her appointment with Declan, then went to bed, strangely tired.

She didn’t realize that she still had the sphere on her.

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October 17

Day Four

Olivia swore she’d been dreaming about the sphere. She dragged herself through her shower and morning routine, clearly tired and fuzzy-headed. Damien was worried about her and made her go to the infirmary. Janet gave her a diagnosis of stress, noting that her stress levels were through the roof, especially her adrenaline and cortisol. “I don’t know what you’ve been doing, but you need to stop,” Dr. Fraiser told her. “Your body is holding up well, at least to this point, because you’re a Specialist. But no one’s body can operate like this forever. I’m putting you on medical leave for three days. Go off base, get a nice hotel room and don’t do any work.”

“Vacation,” Olivia said. “Got it.”

Three days wasn’t enough time to fly home, but it was enough time to drive to a small resort town in the mountains called Estes Park. Olivia had heard it was lovely, but it didn’t meet expectations – it exceeded them. The area was gorgeous, and Olivia choose to stay in the Stanley, hoping that the novelty of ‘ghosts’ would distract her from her almost overwhelming desire to drive back to SGC and get the sphere.

Sighing, she went to unpack, noting an odd weight in her sweater pocket. Blinking, she pulled out the orb and broke into a grin. She had it on her! Olivia couldn’t believe her luck. Sure, Dr. Fraiser had said no work, but the puzzle wasn’t work, it was fun. Setting it on the table, she ran down to the corner convenience store and bought a stack of notebooks. Grinning happily, she sat down and got to work.

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October 20

Day Seven

“General, you have a phone call,” Walter said, knocking discreetly on the door. He looked nervous, as one should look when he found him flirting with a pretty red-headed CIA liaison. O’Neill looked at the Sergeant, glad for Walter’s well-known discretion; the flirting had been going very well.

“Can it wait?” he asked, looking at the very lovely Kerry Johnson and then giving Walter a clear guy-look.

“Sir, it’s Estes Park Medical Center and they say that they have Dr. Jenings-Izumi in their care,” Walter said, his voice concerned. “They want to talk to the doctor’s usual provider.”

The specialist was due back from medical leave today, O’Neill recalled. Must not have helped. “Put them through,” O’Neill ordered, then turned to Kerry after Walter had ducked out. “Sorry, duty calls.”

“No problem,” she said, already moving toward the exit. “I’ll catch you later. Oh, and hey… I hope your doctor is ok.”

“Thank you,” O’Neill said sincerely. His attention was taken by his phone buzzing, but he did get a quick look at her nice ass as she walked away. “Possibilities,” he muttered, then picked up his phone. “General Jack O’Neill,” he said as a greeting, then added, “The Jenings-whatever you have – is her first name Olivia?”

“Yes. I’m Dr. Corday here in EPMC. I’m her attending. We’re sure she’s yours because of the emergency contact card in her purse,” a woman told him, her voice competent and assured.

“She didn’t tell you?” O’Neill asked. “What’s her status?”

“We’re not sure-”

“Not sure?” O’Neill echoed, not liking the clench in his gut.

“No, which is why we were hoping for previous medical records,” Dr. Corday replied, sounding a bit annoyed.

“That’s not possible,” O’Neill said, knowing that any Specialist’s medical records were unavailable. They were damned lucky that Dr. Ji was so damned normal. “Prep her for transport. We’ll be bringing her back to Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Base for treatment. Do you guys have a helipad?”

“Of course, but I don’t recommend-”

“I’m sorry, but we have to insist. Her medical provider will be with the chopper so don’t worry about us killing her in-route,” O’Neill interrupted. He actually heard her inhale a breath in irritation and hold it for the start of a count; he quickly added, “I’m transferring you to Dr. Janet Fraiser now so that you can give her all the medical details and she can properly prep.”

He punched it through as Dr. Corday started to argue, then leaned over toward the door and shouted, “Walter!”

“Sir, I’ve had an air ambulance prepped for medivac from Estes Park,” Walter told him, poking his head into his room.

O’Neill was getting used to the effectiveness of his own personal Radar and simply nodded. “Thank you, Walter,” he said. “Dr. Fraiser and her team should be ready to go soon. Have them go as soon as she’s ready.” Walter nodded and scurried off, leaving O’Neill with one more unpleasant task.

Sighing, he dialed Major Caine’s office. “Major, please come to my office immediately,” he said and hung up with his acknowledgment. O’Neill knew Caine, knew what kind of leader and man he was, and knew that he wasn’t going to take this well.

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Dr. Fraiser didn’t like this. She was used to unusual happenings around the SGC, but the specialists had been mercifully free of such things. In fact, she’d always feared the day when a specialist got sick like this. She wasn’t sure that they were treatable, and she knew some were difficult to treat. Dr. Jenings-Izumi wasn’t one of the hard ones, so Janet had caught a break, in a morbid way. She had a chance to treat a specialist without having to deal with some of the more extreme cases.

“Damn it,” she muttered, looking over the data that the pissed Dr. Corday had given her. The steel-haired doctor had been angry at O’Neill and the situation, but her care of Dr. Jenings-Izumi hadn’t faltered. None of this made any sense; low blood sugar, dehydration, erratic pulse and a high blood pressure – and her adrenaline and cortisol were still way too high. And of course, the medications were having a reduced effect. At least she didn’t seem to be rejecting the saline.

The patient was still unconscious, riding on the gurney in the middle of the air ambulance. The young doctor looked to be in bad shape; her eyes and cheeks were sunken. Part of that was from dehydration. But it had only been three days. Janet wondered if her higher metabolism was responsible for her state, but that would mean that Olivia hadn’t eaten in a while. She was on vacation, for God’s sake! What had happened?

She toggled the headset on her helmet and said to the pilot, “Please call SGC and have Dr. Sierra waiting in the isolation room. I’d like her consulting on this; grant her permission to pull and review Dr. Olivia Sachi Jenings-Izumi’s medical file.”

“Dr. Fraiser!” Janet looked at the nurse who had been going through Olivia’s admission bag, looking for a sign of what was wrong. He was holding something up for Janet to see. Normally, if something useful was found, it was a drug, not a golden sphere covered in Ancient writing.

Janet cursed, then toggled the switch again. “And Lieutenant, please ask Dr. Sierra to research a golden ball, made of interlaced strips of metal, covered in Ancient writing. Tell her it was on Dr. Jenings-Izumi’s person when she was admitted for unknown medical issues. She'll understand why that's important.” I hope.

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Yseult had been taking a hot bath after another bout of grueling sparring when she got the call about a medical emergency concerning Olivia. She was to collect Olivia's medical file and any files concerning an Artifact that Olivia had been working on, then head to Isolation immediately. Olivia was being flown in from Estes Park Medical Center.

With a curse Yseult jumped out of the tub and dried herself roughly; still mostly wet, her clothes began to literally fly on as she pulled her hair into a wet ponytail. She was still putting on her shoes as she ran out the door. She may not have liked being rushed in her work, but she wouldn't fail on her first serious case since being released from Isolation.

She got to the lift, but when it took too long to arrive, she ran to the stairs, barely stopping to tell the guard that there was a medical emergency. She had dashed up only one flight of stairs when she smiled grimly, then left the ground supported only by her own telekinetic might.

Swiftly, Yseult flew up to sublevel 18, then recieved a startled look from the guard at the door when he saw her fly out and around the corner to the Artifact room. She was disappointed when she didn't see Daniel there, but wasted no time in looking through the log book. She quickly found out what Olivia had been working on last, but it took her a few precious minutes to find the file. For some reason, Daniel and Olivia didn't seem to file them in any logical order that would make sense to a rational scientist. She wrote a note for Daniel, and called in a firm request for Daniel to go the Isolation room.

Yseult's walk to the lift was just short of a run. She use the time getting there and to the Isolation room on sublevel 21 to quickly scan the file. Hmmm, found on PX9-003, probable Ancient origin. A golden, metal sphere made of interlocking ribbons forming a puzzle. Covered in Ancient writing, possibly relating History/Story/Folktale. This isn't helping!

She needed more help with the PX9-003 artifact, especially if she was going to have to spend more time on Olivia's medical file. She sent out a PA while waiting for the lift.

"This is Dr. Yseult requesting Col. Cam Mitchell, Specialist Gwyn Jones, and Specialist Steven Courier to come to Isolation Room Two immediately for a medical emergency. Bring any tools and equipment you will need to study an Ancient Artifact."

She swept into the medical bay, and seeing a nurse holding out Olivia's medical file, pulled them to her hand with a burst of will and continued on to the Isolation Room.

She paced the room waiting for Dr. Frasier and Olivia to arrive. She poured over the charts, trying to determine what could have caused Olivia's condition, absorbing the updates the nurse kept giving her from Dr. Frasier. As she read Olivia's file, her sympathy and respect for the dark historian grew. She has suffered so much, yet seems to be holding up well. Until now.

Yseult's eyes kept coming back to the incident in Area 51. A black pentagon found at a Grecian (?) dig in Connecticut had caused Olivia to suffer some sort of seizure with associated psychosomatic effects, resultiing in permanent brain damage. Her exposure to the Ancient Artifact had repaired some of the damage, and rerouted other functions into a greatly enhanced whole. Tapping her lips in thought with a finger, Yseult ordered the cat-scan and eeg machines to be put on stand-by.

So far, the only thing that seemed to be related to Olivia's symptoms was her exposure to the Artifact from PX9-003, but others had had exposure to it, such as Daniel Jackson, and as far as she knew, he was in fine health. However, only Olivia had spent time deciphering the information written on the golden sphere.

Can knowledge lead to deteriorating health? Health problems leading from lack of water and nutrition, along with exhaustion. That is characteristic of obsessive behaviour. Where else have you seen knowledge leading to altered mental activity? Jack O'Neill! He had a built in response to the overload of information from the Ancient's Repository of Knowledge. If she is stuck in some manner of fight or flight response, that could also explain the heightened adrenaline and cortisol readings.

This was the best conjecture Yseult could come up with on short notice and without running any tests: the golden sphere acted like a version of a Repository of Knowledge, but Olivia's previous brain damage from another artifact as well as altered brain functions from the Ascension Device were causing massive interference in its use, resulting in the trauma Olivia was experiencing.

Dr. Frasier came rushing in with Olivia on a gurney being pushed by two airforcement and an attending nurse. Yseult gasped at seeing the condition that Olivia was in, but other stroking her hair in sympathy, wasted no time in ushering them to the cat-scan machine.

"Janet, I have a theory..."

We are going to make you well Olivie!

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Major Johnny Thelen of SG-19 hated small towns, and hated small tourist towns most of all. That was one of the good things about being at Cheyenne; Colorado Springs was actually a pretty decent-sized town. "I've got the paperwork right here, he said patiently for the third time.

The deputy 'helping' him squinted at him suspiciously and then peered at the papers again. "This looks legit-"

"Great, then can I have the doctor's possessions?"

"-but I'm going to need to ask Duke about it."

"Duke?" Coondog or the sheriff. Too bad no one's here to take the bet.

"Chief Duke Davidson, o'course."

"Of course," Thelen ground. He pulled out his cell phone. "What's the number here?"

"Why fer?"

"Because, I'm about to call my general, and he's about to raise holy hell unless I get Dr. Jenings-Izumi's possessions. Now." Jesus Christ, why did she have to fall to freak syphilis off-base and create this giant hassle?

"No need to be rude, son," the deputy said. "The detectives are just lookin' over things right now."

So many red flags went up in Thelen's mind that he was temporarily blinded by waving, red cloth. "Thank you," he said to the deputy, "because I no longer need to wait. By my authority as an Air Force officer, I need to verify that your detectives aren't reading classified information. In fact, now they need to come to Cheyenne Air Force Base for debriefing and to determine if they've broken any Federal laws." Thelen pushed behind the desk, pulling out his radio. "Guys, they've been looking through her things. Kyle, could you bring your team in here, too, please?"

"Roger that," Captain Kyle Flowers of SG-17 replied. "On our way."

Thelen shoved into the back room to find two men pouring over notebooks. Every page was covered with hand-written Ancient. A woman stood at the copy machine, running copies from another notebook. "Detectives and ma'am, I'm Major John Thelen of the Air Force, and you, you lucky fellas, are reading classified information, which means you've won a free trip to Colorado Springs, courtesy of Uncle Sam." Behind him, the rest of his team and SG-17 walked in, all their Air Force Blues. "Pack it up, people included, and be sure you grab the copies off the copier."

"Sir," Thad Winters, his team-geek chirped up, "we should probably check the copier and make sure that the buffer doesn't have anything in it."

"Good catch," Thelen nodded. "That's your job, and the copies. Oh, and once you find her keys, you and Rocki are driving her car back, so you might as well put her personal items in there, too. No point in flying it all back when we have to get the car anyway."

As the others packed up the people and personal effects, Thelen grabbed the notebooks. There were six of them, a hundred pages each, all with Ancient scrawled on the pages. What the hell was that bitch up to?

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Gwyn had already heard from Major Caine that Olivia was in some kind of medical problem, and the two of them were already waiting down in the medical wing when Yseult's PA went out. Swearing under his breath Gwyn sprinted the short distance to Isolation 2 at great speed [OOC: About 75m/turn ~90kph].

Finding Yseault just before Olivia arrived, he had to wait while she watched Olivia wheeled in before he could get her attention. "Hi Doc, what have you got on this artifact? No point bringing any kit until I know what might be relevant."

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Cam was in his quarters reading up on more of the background material he needed to learn to be effective around here when he heard the call over the PA. "Crap!" He grabbed the alien data terminal that was newly repaired and ran for the infirmary. He arrived to find Dr. Yseult, Gwyn and Major Caine already ahead of him. "I got here as fast as I could, what's the situation?"

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If he had anything to do with this, I swear Declan and I will find a way to bury this guy ... in pieces ... so the animals can scavenge the remains. I swear.

Sure, it was a selfish thought, but it was the one he spared himself to spend even one moment away from the worry of what had happened to his team mate. She was supposed to be safe here, but wasn't. Something had found a way to claw it's way into her life and turn it upside down again. Whatever it was had made an enemy.

Three questions came up:

Where had she been?

Who had she been with?

What had she been working on?

When he walked into the observation room, which was as close as his non-medical status would allow him, Damien waited on data. He taped the communicator on the wall.

"This is Major Caine. When the retrieval team comes in, please inform me immediately."

He had to do something.

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Dr. Fraiser nodded to Yseult as she said she had a theory. But to the others, she said, “Please join Major Caine in the observation chamber. You can confer with Dr. Sierra through the intercom. I’ll have the artifact brought up to you so you can work on that.” She was very firm on this point, and the nurse brought the golden sphere to the observation room with Damien.

After they had left, Dr. Fraiser said, “She regained consciousness right as we landed.” As Yseult looked to the very still specialist, her eyes questioning, Janet added, “She demanded to be given that sphere, and when I refused, she became… violent is the wrong word, but she was very physical and insistent. I sedated her so she wouldn’t hurt herself.”

Janet drew a breath and asked, “What’s your theory?”

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While watching the results of the cat-scan on the monitor, Yseult told Cam, Damien, and Gwyn, by intercom, what she knew, discerning eyes never leaving the monitor. Yseult got a nurse to hand Cam the log on the Artifact from PX9-003. She also made sure they got the notebooks that Olivia had in her possession.

"Olivie left on medical leave in Estes Park three days ago. She was brought in just now with signs of dehydration, malnourishment, and exhaustion, as well as hightened adrenaline and cortisol counts. The only link I can find is the Artifact from PX9-003. Her seeming obsession with the artifact lends credence to this assumption." Yseult's soprano was cool, almost cold, her accent mild. With changing tone, she emphatically included Dr. Frasier in her report about her theory.

"I believe that the artifact may be in some ways similar to the Ancient's Repository of Knowledge and it is having an adverse affect on Olivie due to her altered brain functions and previous cerebral damage from exposure to another artifact from a dig in Connecticut. I called for the log on that, but it will take time to get here from Area 51." Yseult's voice tightened at the mention of the delay. "I should also note that Jack O'Neill also experienced a imprinted response to the Repository, this artifact may have been trying something similar to Olivie."

"We need to know what this artifact is. gentlemen. Unless any of you know Ancient, Daniel better get here soon. You may handle the device through the Isolation chamber with the attached hand protection. And try to avoid examining the writing on it, it may have an adverse affect on those with 'Specialist' physiologies."

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Gwyn nodded at Yseult's theory, "She has been obsessed with this artofact since she first started work on it, distracted when having to do other things and wanting to talk about it all the time as well. It must be working on her like a drug or something, so perhaps she hasn't eaten or drunk anything while she has been away for those 3 days. Would that account for the bulk of her condition, given her heightened need for food as a Specialist?"

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"Hell, we were all altered by the Ancient 'table' Device. Could this Orb be mistaking her for an Ancient and interacting with her on a level of cerebral activity that the Ancients maintained. It could literally be sucking her brain in and using it up."

"Once she gets stabilized, some means of breaking that addiction must be found. Dr. Sierra, don't let Dr. Jenings-Izumi touch you, or she may bring the object to herself. None of us should contact her until we know she's more in control of herself. Someof us have heightened metabolisms and could rapidly work through the sedatives. Others could break the bonds holding her down. No speicalist should get close."

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Gwyn nods at Damien's assessment, "I have to second that Dr Sierra, Dr Frasier, no Specialist should be allowed in the same room with her. Also we need to talk to Dr Jackson as soon as possible, as he was also working on the artifact, apparently without this effect."

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"Except for the heightened adrenaline and cortisol, yes Gwyn, we do believe her symptoms are a result of her obsessive behaviour. Why it caused her to act this way, we do not know yet. I'm counting on you, Cam, and anyone else we have studying the artifact to find out. I will consult with any information I find here." Yseult's tone was unchanged, her eyes pouring over the incoming data.

"Adrian we will be running a full series of tests to see if we can find any substance that can explain her symptoms as well, so we can treat it. At this moment, I tend to favour that the device is 'downloading' rather than 'uploading', but hopefully we will know soon."

"I had not taken her imprinting ability into account. Janet, I will have to stay back, and let you perform any treatments that are necessary. I will be able to assist you with my telekinetic ability if needed. Those of you examining the artifact, if you have any method to see if it reacts to the energy that our 'specialist abilities' use, that would be good to know as well. Gwyn, I do believe that the artifact is having an effect purely on those with 'specialist' physiologies, so be careful in examining it."

"And where is Daniel Jackson? Those notebooks need to be translated!"

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Originally Posted By: Yseult Sierra
She sent out a PA while waiting for the lift.

"This is Dr. Yseult requesting Col. Cam Mitchell, Specialist Gwyn Jones, and Specialist Steven Courier to come to Isolation Room Two immediately for a medical emergency. Bring any tools and equipment you will need to study an Ancient Artifact."
Steve heard the PA and dithered for a moment... *Ancient Artifact sounds good, but Isolation doesn't and 'medical emergency' even less so.*


*Do you really want to explain this in two days? Right, I didn't think so.*

Steve went down to Iso-2 with a brisk stride and said, "Courier here, what's going on?"
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“Dr. Jackson is on-mission,” Janet said. “He was supposed to be back a couple of days ago, but his mission was extended by the General.” She looked up at the observation room. “Someone should talk to him about that, if we really need Dr. Jackson.”

She glanced at Yseult. “I’ll draw the blood, you start the tests?” At Yseult’s nod, Janet turned to her task. After a moment, she said, “The heightened stress markers are still a concern of mine. They could be a symptom, if they’re placing stress on her body. However, if there’s any reason we should eliminate them for another reason, I need to know that.” She looked up at the observation room again, then back at her patient.

As the men above began to struggle with the orb, the medical team below worked on the patient. A feeding tube was inserted to begin returning nourishment. A saline drip had already started to rehydrate her. Her presumed exhaustion was being handled right now, though sedation. Her symptoms were being treated, but they were a long way from knowing the cause.

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Cam nodded to Steve, "Good you're here. Olivia has gotten on the wrong side of this alien thingy." He pointed to the orb inside the isolation chamber. "According to what Dr. Frasier and Yseult said, she seems to have obsessed on the artifact and it's causing physical problems. Not sure if it's just a reaction to not eating or sleeping, or if it is actually draining her in some way, but she's in pretty bad shape. I advise against trying to read the actual text on the surface."

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Steve frowned. *I like and respect Olivia, and besides, she is useful. But... if there was some alien thing capable of taking out her, then what would it do to me?*

*Oh, right. Silly me. Let's just take it reacting to me off the table.*

Steve glanced at his shadow which obligingly vanished. {Fade On}

Steve said, "OK, let's just take a look at what's going on..." For show Steve took a deep breath and narrowed his eyes in concentration to make it look like this was a real effort.

{Use Cyber-K on the Orb to see if it's active and reachable. If so, let's go in and see what's going on.}

EDIT: Steve's Roll

Click to reveal..
First die is mega.

7d10.hits(7) [10,7,4,4,10,4,8] = 6 sux


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Steve says, "That's... odd. It's draining energy of some sort from her. It's built to do this but I don't see what it's supposed to DO with it. Why is it... Naquadah?"

Steve said loudly, "SHIT!!! IT'S A NUKE! This thing is an atomic hand grenade! OK, I'll just... No!"

Steve turned to look at the others, "I can't disarm this thing. It's already got too much energy. I think... if I just turn it off it will detonate."

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Cam sucked in a quick breath when he heard Steve's words. Perhaps he could gather more detail now that Steve had discovered it's purpose...

Click to reveal..

First die is mega

Spending 1 willpower for an auto success

(12:44:28) ChatBot: (Cam) rolls 7d10 and gets 7,9,4,3,1,5,9.

5 successes total

Unlike Steve, the powers that be weren't aware that Cam could interface with computers and alien tech and he wanted to keep it that way so he pretended to hook up the alien data terminal in order to supposedly run diagnostics. In reality he set the terminal to display what he was seeing from inside the orb.

It was difficult to make much sense of the thing as alien as it was, but with his previous experience with the Ascension device and with Steve's description of it's purpose he was able to make a little progress. He was pretty sure that the device could be shut off, but not disarmed. It did not yet have enough energy to explode, but it wasn't far from that point. He was also able to detect several 'triggers'. If it were to be separated from Olivia by more than a certain distance it would detonate using the energy it had already stored. It wouldn' be a full power blast, but would still be plenty to destroy the SGC. Another trigger was the stargate. If it detected too close of a proximity to a gate it would also detonate with unforeseeable results. As he worked his way through the device he pointed out what he was finding on the data-terminal screen. That way Gwyn and possibly Yseult could put their own computer skills and knowledge of Alien devices to work. Cam would remain linked with the device for now so that they could have access via the data terminal. It might afford Steve a better window on the thing too for that matter.

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(Investigative Prodigy On)

Steve kept inside the artifact to learn as much as he could and try to calculate how long they have.

Click to reveal..
7d10.hits(7) [4,6,9,2,5,9,6] = (2) 2 Succ.


Steve said, "Build up is pretty slow. I think we still have hours but it's hard to judge. It could be days."

Steve walked over to the screen and watched for a minute, talking out loud, "Blows up if they're separated. Blows up if it goes through the Star Gate. No, correction. Blows up 'before' it goes through the gate. That was my next idea. This is looking more and more like a deliberate trap."

"Nuclear is hit or miss, right? If it's below a certain point it's a boom but not a nuclear boom? So we... gamble that we're not at that point yet and put it at the bottom of a lake and sail away?"

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Only a slight frown marred Yseult's focused concentration, as she heard Steve's dire statement. It wasn't the worst the SGC had seen, but it was certainly troubling. We'll find the way to fix this, and to fix Olivie!

Click to reveal..
Int + Computer (Willpower spent)

1d10=1, 1d10=6, 1d10=9, 1d10=1, 1d10=4, 1d10=9, 1d10=7, 1d10=7, 1d10=9 + 1 = 6 successes

Int + Medicine (Willpower spent)

1d10=4, 1d10=6, 1d10=9, 1d10=5, 1d10=5, 1d10=3, 1d10=9, 1d10=2, 1d10=7 + 1 = 4 successes

She studied the results of her and Dr. Frasier's medical tests and the diagnostics displayed by the alien data terminal that Cam had connected to the PX9-003 Artifact. Her progress was deliberate, almost unhurried. She would not rush and make a mistake, nor leap to conclusions.

It took three hours to set-up a viable method of monitoring the link between the artifact and Olivia. Yseult was able to determine the artifact was siphoning the energies that powered the specialist abilities from the dark librarian, leeching her of her vitality, resulting in mass organ failure. Unfortunately, much to her disgust, Yseult was unable to find out how the link was established, nor could she figure out how to sever it. Yet.

"Okay, I have find a way to monitor the artifact's draining of Olivie, and how long it will to reach the critical point for detonation. We have twelve hours to find a safe way to turn off or neutralize the device and sever the link between the device and Olivie."

Yseult's voice was professional and unwavering, only a slight tightening of the mouth and around her eyes betraying her concern, detracting in no way from her beauty.

[12:00 to detontation]

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Caine remains there stoicly, right elbow in left hand and right hand on chin. Except for his eyes moving and blinking, he doesn't seem to move. His mind studies and computes. As data comes in, he processes it. As options and discarded, he gathers them in a reverse investigative process. Every bit of information has its purpose. All he had to do is figure out what that is.

"Can we tell if the count is accelerated, or decelerated by her presence?"

It is cold reasoning, but very much like Livy.

"For that matter, is there we could reverse the effect and cause her to siphon from the device ... once we figure out what the process is?"

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Steve looked at the half dead Olivia and said, "Wait, why do we need Olivia? Any way to siphon the device would do it, right? All we need is something to steal it's energy."

"So, liquid Nitrogen Bath? I'm unclear on their tech, would that lock something up or something?"

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Cam frowned, "I think that might trigger it." His fingers flew over the alien keyboard on the alien data terminal and new images appeared on the screen. "Look at this right here, I think this means if it detects it's energy begin to deplete it will go boom."

Click to reveal..

(15:22:14) ChatBot: (Cam) rolls 7d10 and gets 4,7,9,6,2,5,7.

3 successes

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Gwyn begins analysing the information as fast as it is presented to him, trying to find a weakness in the way the device works, a way to shut it down. In the meantime he comments to cover while he processes, "Goes off like a nuke huh? That was my job before I came here, disarming or disabling nukes. Hang on, something like this has happend before, but they were traps put or built into people by one or more Goa'uld. Dr Fasier, didn't Cassandra have something like this when she first arrived?"

He turns to Cam and Steve, "What triggered it? What made it start this process when Olivia came into contact with it and not when Dr Jackson did? Perhaps we could find a way of resetting it?"

Hang in there Doc, we'll find a way out of this for you.

Click to reveal..

Analyse Weakness on the design of the device to find a away to safely shut it down.

INT 5 + M-Int 1 = 6 dice, first Mega

(03:31:57) ChatBot: (Gwyn) rolls 6d10 and gets 5,6,4,9,10,4.

Demolitions to disarm

INT + M-INT + Demolitions (Nukes) + 2 from Analysis = 5+1+3+2 = 11 dice, first Mega, plus a Willpowerfor an Auto sux

(03:37:29) ChatBot: (Gwyn) rolls 11d10 and gets 3,9,6,7,8,8,2,1,9,5,5.

= 5 sux + Auto = 6 sux

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Dr. Frasier blinked in surprise, "Um, yes, she did. I don't think this is quite the same though. In this case we can't just throw the device into the wormhole as it manifests. If we get it even close to a stargate it will explode."

Cam raised an eyebrow at the thought, but dismissed it as quickly as it came. So far they hadn't be able to find any way to disable the draining effect. Maybe if they figured out how it started, what armed the thing then they could figure out how to turn it off. "Let's see if we can figure it out."

((Steve you are welcome to make another CyberK roll if you wish.))

Click to reveal..

(00:01:01) ChatBot: (Cam) rolls 7d10 and gets 3,9,4,8,4,3,7.

3 successes I'll hold off posting till Steve has had a chance to roll.

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He turns to Cam and Steve, "What triggered it? What made it start this process when Olivia came into contact with it and not when Dr Jackson did? Perhaps we could find a way of resetting it?"
Steve said, "Donno what started it. Presumably she did or is something he didn't or isn't. I don't think it's as simple as resetting it. It's gone past the initial trigger."

Steve frowned, then brightened and said, "Wait, that sensor monitoring the power level. In theory I could take control and order it to believe the power level is increasing no matter what it's actually doing."

"Then we could discharge it, maybe with that nitrogen bath. Eventually I'd have to let go and it'd go off, but with no juice."

Click to reveal..
7d10.hits(7) [1,5,5,9,2,8,10] = (3)
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"What about putting this thing in high orbit? Specialist Jones can do that. He also has the skills to handle it and can fall back if it heads toward a critical level. There is the added advantage of getting it away from Doctor Jenings-Izumi."

They were reaching at straws now, but their fall back positions were fading fast and their resident experts were stymied, or unconcious. They needed a Jackson to figure out ...

"What is the decive supposed to do? I mean, what was Olivia doing with it in the first place? The answer may already be in front of us, we just need to translate it. What do the symbols on the device mean and were are Dr. Jackson's and Jenings-Izumi notes on this."

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"Damien, we cannot separate the device from Olivie, or it will explode. Cam should have Olivie's notes that she deciphered from the device, but it is written in Ancient. Does anyone here speak Ancient? Where--Tarbarnaque!--is Daniel Jackson?" A single note of frustration entered Yseult's calm voice.

"That is a good idea Steve, trying to trick the device. Another thing I would like to know, will Olivie's death break the link to the device? And what will the device do in such an event? If the link breaks with no ill effects, we may be able to trick the device into believing that Olivie is dead, or we can induce cardiac arrest, then resuscitate her." Yseult said this with total aplomb, the note of frustration gone.

Click to reveal..
If needed

Int + Computers (5d10 + 4d10)

1d10=3, 1d10=6, 1d10=3, 1d10=4, 1d10=3, 1d10=10, 1d10=1, 1d10=4, 1d10=8 = 2 Successes

1d10=3 = 0 Successes (if Int-Discerning applies)

Total Successes = 2

Int + Med (5d10 + 4d10)

1d10=3, 1d10=7, 1d10=10, 1d10=4, 1d10=4, 1d10=10, 1d10=4, 1d10=10, 1d10=6 = 4 Successes

1d10=7, 1d10=2, 1d10=6 = 1 Success (if Int-Discerning applies)

Total Successes = 5 (or 4)

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Kill Olivia? That seemed pretty drastic, but they were on a time crunch here, nine hours and counting.

Cam delved into the device with both his ability and with just plain computer skills. Of course those skills were largely borrowed thanks to the Ascension machine, but Cam wasn't about to look a gift horse in the mouth.

Click to reveal..

(16:26:43) ChatBot: (Cam) rolls 7d10 and gets 4,1,7,10,5,8,1.

3 successes for CyberK

(16:26:56) ChatBot: (Cam) rolls 11d10 and gets 6,9,6,10,10,4,5,9,5,9,7.

6 successes for computer roll.

He couldn't be completely sure, but he couldn't find any subroutines or triggers that would cause the device to detonate if Olivia died prematurely. Of course if it had already absorbed too much energy it might still explode anyway, but there was no immediate trigger he could find. They might have some time to work with.

"Dr. Yseult, I'd like Steve and Gwyn to verify my results but I think you might be right. Olivia's death might just sever the link without a detonation and give us a little breathing room to get rid of it. Of course now that it's armed I think proximity to a gate would still set it off, but we might be able to take it out and up into orbit or something. Steve's suggestion might also work, but would be more risky. Perhaps a combination of the two would be best."

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Gwyn raises an eyebrow at Yseult's suggestion, but nods as Cam chips in, then gets to work to try to find out if that is possible.

Click to reveal..

INT+Demolitions = 5+1+3 = 9dice

(01:38:14) ChatBot: (Gwyn) rolls 9d10 and gets 7,1,4,9,6,8,3,6,6.

3 sux

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Steve says, "That sounds pretty harsh. Couldn't we just send her through the wormhole? Have we used the gate since this thing turned on? And... I doubt my range is all that great when it comes to nukes. I think our plans might be either-or."

Steve mentally checked to see what would happen if they kill Olivia. It wasn't his first option, but it would beat getting a really good view of a nuclear explosion.

Click to reveal..
7d10.hits(7) [5,1,4,3,7,1,10] = (2)


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"Well, I'm not sure one way or the other, but on the basis that it would work I'll start getting things set up to get that thing as far away as fast as possible not using the Stargate." he says looking at the two computer experts.

Turning to Damien he continues, "Quickest way I can think of to get this thing out of here would be to clear a route to the surface so I can fly it out, and have a 302 overhead. I grab hold and it boosts for space ASAP. Once in space we head for the sun and I throw it in that general direction. What do you think Major, and can you get the General to ok the 302?"

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"I'll call the General and set it up. Colonel, can you get a 302 up and ready ... and how fast?"

"Damn, covering up a high altitude nuclear blast is going to be tough. In case it doesn't detonate it, we need to attach some kind of tracing device on it, so we can know were it is and be aware if anyone else grabs it - as far fetched as that is, we don't want any kind of Ancient tech floating above us unmonitored."

Damien picks up the phone and hesitates,

"Actually colonel, you are the ranking man here. Do you want to make this call. She's no my team and I'm more than willing to endorse this plan to save her life and all of ours as well."

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Cam looked up from the display, "No, you make it Major, she's under your command and I'm sure the General knows you are monitoring the situation. As for the 302, it would take hours to get to one and get airborne, there are other good pilots who are on standby and can get a bird in the air quickly. Maybe if the Prometheus weren't enroute to the Pegasus galaxy we could just beam this thing into space, but then if it weren't gone then we'd have Daniel and Colonel Carter here to help figure this thing out." It was plain that Cam wasn't happy about that. "To tell the truth, I won't be very comfortable until we have a fleet of ships ready to defend us and available for things like this. Having more than one sure would have made the Anubis situation easier."

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