Subtitle: Because They'd Been Having Them All Along
Dream #1: Chuck
Spoilers: 4.04 Doppleganger
Wordcount: 800 (P1)
Warnings: Dark themes.
Summary: What is Chuck's greatest fear?
Chuck woke to the sound of screaming.
He was in his uniform, out his door and running towards the sound of gunfire before he woke up enough to realise he should really be running away from the bullets. By then it was already too late: he'd reached the gate room and a scene straight out of hell.
The gateroom was a shambles. Wires streamed from fire-blasted walls, tangling about each other like overcooked spaghetti. Smoke billowed in through shattered windows, and shards of the heavy ancient glass thickly littered the floor. Fire licked the ceiling.
A bloody and disheveled Sam Carter stood at the top of the steps, demanding the citywide channel. Doctor McKay raced from console to console behind her, shouting into his radio, hair standing straight up and blood wine-red on his collar. Chuck felt himself pale at the frantic pitch of McKay's voice. Even before Colonel Carter's voice boomed through the city, he knew what was going to be said.
"Attention all personnel. This is Colonel Carter speaking."
Chuck sprinted up the stairs and threw himself into the gate tech chair, ignoring the gore splattered across the DHD. He'd spare a thought for the tech from the previous shift later. For now...
"The Wraith are in the city. Repeat, the Wraith are in the city. All personnel fall back to the gate room for immediate evacuation." Colonel Carter's voice didn't even tremble, despite the blood dripping from her temple. Her hair was coming loose.
Chuck lifted his hand over the DHD, waiting.
People started flowing raggedly into the gateroom, shepherded by the Marines.
"Chuck," Colonel Carter turned, flashed a quick smile to see him there. "Please dial Earth. Rodney." She captured Doctor McKay's arm as he went to slide past her. "Set the self-destruct."
Doctor McKay looked as though he wanted to argue. People continued to run into the gateroom, screams rising over the sounds of the fighting coming closer. He glanced over the railing into the increasingly packed gateroom, his mouth compressing with fury, but he nodded and started typing viciously into the nearest working tablet. Chuck pressed the keys, the hum of the gate a reassuring buzz as each co-ordinate was pressed. The eighth chevron locked and the gate flared into life. Chuck sent the Atlantis IDC and started sending people through.
"Oh, no." Doctor McKay's voice reached new levels of freaking out. "The self-destruct is damaged. I can't trigger it."
"Maybe I could..."
"Sam! I'm telling you it's useless." Doctor McKay's face was hard and cold. "I can't." He paused, and Chuck could almost hear the gears grinding to a halt in his head. When he spoke again his voice was flat. "We need to get to the gate."
Colonel Carter closed her eyes in defeat.
Major Lorne spilled into the room, a Wraith riding him down, firing desperately into its chest. The Wraith laughed and slammed its hand into the major's chest. More Wraith flooded into the gateroom after them. Doctor McKay grabbed Colonel Carter's arm and hauled her towards the gate, driven by fear. They were still feet away when the Wraith reached them. Doctor McKay tried to block Colonel Carter with his body, shoving her toward the gate. It was a futile gesture. Chuck shrank back as their screams joined those of the rest of the humans in the room. His back hit something warm and he spun in place, finding Colonel Sheppard standing behind him, a naquadah generator held snugly under his arm. He looked ... exhilarated.
A shout of triumph had Chuck looking back at the gate. The Wraith had gained the gate platform and were beginning to pour through the gate, barely slowed by the final useless resistance of the handful of remaining Marines. He tore his eyes away, sobbing out loud in denial.
"Don't worry, Campbell," Sheppard said, stepping closer and grabbing his hand, placing it on the now frantically beeping generator. "It'll hurt them more than it will hurt you." He paused, madness and joy reflected in his eyes. "Though it will hurt. A lot." HIs fingers tightened on Chuck's, crushing them against the metal skin of the generator whose unleashed power would make a standard warhead look like a cookfire. Sheppard grinned at him maniacally as the last screams faded into gurgles, as Chuck's foot slipped in what was left of the other gate tech. Chuck's heart felt like it was about to beat right out of his chest.
Sheppard pressed the button.
Chuck woke to the sound of his alarm.
Dream #2: Radek
Spoilers: 4.04 Doppleganger
Wordcount: 800 (P2)
Warnings: Dark themes.
Summary:Radek's nightmares are as complicated as he is.
"They're dying. They're dying." Doctor Keller chanted, her eyes blank and unfocussed. Radek grasped her face, trying to gain her attention.
"Who, Jennifer? Who is dying?"
Her eyes snapped to his face with an absolute intensity that had him backing away. "All of them," she hissed, madness edging her voice. "All of the gene carriers. Dead."
Radek stumbled back from her, tripping over his own feet. "Ho... How?"
Doctor Keller wrapped her arms around her body and began to rock. Rodney was on the gurney beside her, and Radek suddenly realised he wasn't sleeping. "It's Atlantis," she sobbed at him. "Atlantis has turned on us."
She screamed, and Radek turned and ran.
Colonel Sheppard was suddenly at his shoulder, pulling him through the corridors urgently. "Come on Radek. We need to get you out of here before she finds you."
"B.. but I don't have the gene!" Radek twisted in the Colonel's grip, not really trying to get away but unable to keep himself from struggling.
"I know," Colonel Sheppard said brusquely, "that's why we have to get you away. You can't even work the equipment, for christ's sake. What chance would you have without the gene carriers?"
Radek pictured it; himself striking futilely at consoles, wasting away as Atlantis refused to answer. Suddenly he had no desire at all to fight, and he started running beside Colonel Sheppard towards the jumper bay.
"How are you alive?"
Colonel Sheppard somehow managed a shrug even at an outright run. "Atlantis likes me," he finally said.
They passed bodies in the hallways, were joined by other non-carriers. As a group they raced up the stairs, having decided that taking the transporters would be suicide after seeing the remains of one expedition member oozing from under the doors. Radek's imagination filled in the blanks all too well and he fought to keep his stomach from betraying him as they burst into the jumper bay and pounded straight into Jumper Two.
Radek hated flying with every fibre of his body. Even in the slick puddlejumpers with their inertial dampeners he would find himself sweating and cursing steadily under his breath, hands trembling as he tried desperately to focus on anything else. Colonel Sheppard had taken the pilot's seat and was driving them desperately into the atmosphere. The tiny remaining contingent of people they had managed to crowd into the small ship jostled each other, packed in like sardines in a can. Radek closed his eyes and fervently hoped that the jumper hadn't been suborned by whatever evil had taken Atlantis. The puddlejumper shuddered and dipped as the Colonel twisted the controls, doing his best to stop Atlantis from blowing them out of the sky and compelling Radek to open his eyes. A drone whipped past the viewscreen, and Radek ducked reflexively. Luckily, it missed.
Even as the thought crossed his mind there was deafening boom and the panel over the passengers blew spectacularly, showering the civilians crammed in the back with sparks and flaming chunks of crystal.
Colonel Sheppard drew his hands away from the controls, turned to look at Radek. He didn't look frightened or worried. Instead, incongruously, he looked... excited. Thrilled.
"The hit damaged main power and the drive systems," Colonel Sheppard told him, almost cheerfully. "You need to fix it."
Radek looked down frantically at his tablet, where lights flashed red alarms. "I... I.. I can't," he said, horror crawling through him. "There is too much damage. I can not fix this here."
"McKay could," Colonel Sheppard told him gleefully. "But I guess you're no Rodney McKay."
The jumper fell from the sky.
Radek screamed as the inertial dampeners failed, pinning him to the ceiling. Colonel Sheppard looked up at him from his seat in the pilot's chair, shaking his head sadly. "But then, McKay also realised Atlantis wasn't the problem."
The Colonel turned to more fully look at Radek as the jumper spiraled towards the water. Light glinted off the seam of liquid metal that suddenly appeared along the line of his jaw, spreading in fast forward over the side of the Colonel's face. "I am."
Colonel Sheppard opened his mouth and exhaled a cloud of nanites that immediately dissipated into the air of the ship. Almost instantly, the screaming started. The jumper continued to fall, the spin holding Radek pinned to the roof of the cabin as his people in the rear died and the ocean got closer by the second and the replicator that was John Sheppard laughed and lau...
Radek sat bolt upright, heart pounding in his chest, and counted himself lucky that the entity had not yet invaded his dreams.