Stargate SG1 Fan Fiction / Final Fantasy - All Series Fan Fiction / Stargate: Atlantis Fan Fiction ❯ April Ninth ❯ Chapter Eight ( Chapter 8 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

Well, back to journal format again! Mainly because it's easier, and you guys need a break before the rest of the Stargate crew shows up. And besides, it's fun to write Sheppard being angsty every now and again.
April 22nd, 2006

The Crusaders have been slaughtered. My most optimistic assessment is that they suffered 90 percent casualties. Most of the survivors are just kids, really. The others…
It reminds me of Afghanistan, the aftermath of a Taliban raid on a refugee aid camp the Red Cross set up. I had been flying re-supply missions in. We were actually late due to a fuel line problem on my helo. A few news reporters would later dub us as “luckily tardy”.
Yeah, lucky. Gee, how lucky that there was a first-aid kit for that reporter after his “nasty fall”, huh?
And people wonder why the military hates the media.
Maester Seymour is apparently using this entire incident to put the moves on Yuna. The other Maester, whatever-the-hell-his-name-is, actually looks shattered. Well he'd better.
The biggest thing, however, is that missile strike. No fall-out, so it was a clean weapon. Aside from that, we don't have any clues as to who actually launched it. If I had to bet, I'd say it was launched by a ship in orbit. The way Sin fired a return shot directly up helps the case. If that's so, then the ship was probably destroyed by Sin since it didn't follow up on its last strike. I hope it wasn't an Earth ship… But something tells me there aren't too many other candidates.
Considering that nothing more has come from the sky after Sin returned fire… Good bet that the ship was either disabled, or destroyed. Of course, there is the field that was screwing with my instrumentation too. I'm trying not to think too hard about it.
I wonder if it even matters if I find my 302 or not at this point. A thing like Sin loose on this planet is just… Well, it's kept me from worrying too much about being recovered. Don't get me wrong, I hope I get rescued, what downed pilot doesn't? But as long as I'm here…
“John?” I looked up from the sphere recorder and stared at Yuna. Her fingers were laced in front of her belly, and she was looking, quite frankly, like hell. She had to do a sending ceremony every time someone died, collecting those pyreflies and sending them off who knows where. Heaven, Hell… Having to do that, after every battle, knowing you were handling someone…
She's a mortician. In a pretty dress. With the weight of her world on her shoulders. The rest of the group looks to have sobered up pretty quickly in reaction to… Everything. Good. They'll need to be.
“The sending is complete,” she quietly stated into my brooding. “The Djose Temple is our next stop.” I nodded, before turning to the recorder and hitting the off button. Before the device shut off, it caught my response:
“Got it.”

“From the Daedalus's sensor logs, what we're dealing with is definitely some kind of energy-based lifeform,” Doctor McKay began his lecture, as the rest of Atlantis's command staff listened attentively in the meeting room. The Canadian astrophysicist pressed a few commands on the flat screen, and a wireframe-skeleton of the monster Daedalus had fired upon dominated the display. Aeris, sitting next to Dr. Weir, shivered slightly. Colonel Caldwell noticed, but didn't react further.
“We've seen something similar,” McKay went on. “The System Lord Anubis had life and energy readings very much like what we were seeing from… Well, the whatever-it-is.”
“Sin,” Aeris murmured. McKay blinked and stared with the rest of the assembled staff. Aeris looked up, her eyes eerily blank.
“I was able to catch some impressions when I was talking to the planet,” Aeris explained.
“Establishing a psychic link to the main Ascension control system,” McKay `translated'… Sort of.
“Why did you attempt this?” Weir asked. Aeris regained her focus.
“The energy signatures from the planet are very similar to those of PLANET, and the Lifestream,” Aeris put forth. “I managed to establish a link into something like the Lifestream… But not quite. And the creature is part of it, somehow.” The Cetra looked around the room.
“It's name is Sin.”
“What else did you receive from the link?” Asked Caldwell, suspicion entering his voice. Everyone else mentally rolled their eyes at the colonel's perpetual paranoia.
“Nothing else…” Aeris shrugged. “I think the creature found out what I was doing and shut me out. Just before the missile struck it.”
“Meaning that we could be dealing with another Anubis,” Weir surmised. McKay coughed to get everyone's attention back.
“Only one that's about… ten million, three-hundred and fifty thousand, nine-hundred and forty-two times more powerful.” The gapes McKay received confirmed that his message was indeed getting through.
“Is the creature using the planet's lifestream to power itself?” Caldwell asked Aeris. The Cetra frowned.
“I'm sorry, but I don't know for sure. The most I was able to get from the link were impressions… And an identity. Sin…” Aeris took a deep breath. “It is… If it was human, or an Ancient, it is now reduced to what it does. It maintains a kind of order, along a line of behavior that cannot deviate.” Aeris decided not to mention the mental image of a man in bizarre clothing she'd gotten-She was stressing her credibility as it was.
“Like a computer?” Zelenka asked, his eyes brightening. Finally!
“Yes! It's programmed to carry out a directive of some kind.” Aeris turned to McKay. “Since the world in question has such a low population, and so many ruins, is it possible that Sin is responsible for keeping the people down?” McKay nodded thoughtfully.
“The scans we got were still being distorted by the planet's energy field, but we have cleaned them up enough to determine that this world was once the home of considerably more advanced and numerous peoples.” McKay indicated a few windows of ruins Daedalus had surveyed from orbit. “But, it doesn't look like anything on the surface is responsible for the interference. Is this planet's Lifestream responsible for that too?” Aeris nodded.
“Probably. As for why, and how?” The young woman shook her head. “I haven't the slightest idea. All I know is that Sin is at the heart of whatever is occurring on that world.” Her green eyes narrowed. “I also know that we have to stop it.”
The determination in her usually light and carefree voice was a bit of a shock to the room.
“We must recover Colonel Sheppard,” Teyla interjected. “And allowing such an atrocity to continue unchallenged would leave us no better than the Wraith.” Caldwell nodded, and turned to Weir.
“Dr. Weir, with your permission, I'd like to take the Daedalus back to the planet and begin a full survey. The sooner we figure out what's going on down there, the better.” Caldwell shook his head. “I hate to think what the Wraith would do if they could get their hands on the technology responsible for that monster.” Weir nodded.
“You have a go. In the meantime, Aeris? Rodney? Zelenka? Start working on a way to access the world through the link again. And get Carson on it too-We don't want to risk Sin forcing his way back into Aeris's mind.” Teyla tensed momentarily at this comment, which Aeris noted. The Cetra resolved to speak with the Athosian about this at a later time, as she was naturally curious about the Atlantis expedition as it was.
“In the mean time, we'll see if we can establish a wormhole with the planet,” Weir continued, before smiling slightly. “We're definitely going to need Dr. Jackson if it goes through, Teyla, so you might want to retrieve him from the mainland.”
“I will requisition a pilot immediately,” Teyla promised. Weir nodded.

Dun dun, dah dah dun dunnnnn!
NEXT TIME : Sheppard and the other Guardians continue their journey with Yuna, but will they be able to protect her from what she has planned? Meanwhile, Dr. Jackon bonds with the Athosian people, while McKay, Aeris, and Zelenka uncover new information.
Stay tuned for the next exciting chapter of April Ninth! R&R!