Chapter 22

"Yes, Daniel, how do we get to Kobol?'' asked O'Neill.

"There was a series of gate addresses in with Saturn's research notes. It was buried in the middle of a long, boring section on salmon genetics, so no one had read it before. I was looking for any information on genetic modification, and I accidentally stumbled upon it. There were one hundred fifty three gate addresses. One hundred forty two of them were in the database we've collected over the years. The remaining one must be Kobol's.''

Carter was explaining what a gate address was to Roslin. When she finished, the President said, "well, then, how do we get to your Stargate?''

"We can show you the way,'' said O'Neill, "If you don't mind, I'd like to have Teal'c and Mitchell join us. We may need them in combat, and they have experience fighting Goa'uld, which you don't.''

Adama nodded, and O'Neill radioed the planet for the rest of his team. He turned back to Adama. "You've been very accomodating about this.''

Adama paused for a second before answering. "Before we found you, we really had no hope of escaping the Cylons. With your capabilities we can fight the Cylons, and possibly beat them.''

"But?'' O'Neill prompted.

"But you obviously have other enemies, otherwise you wouldn't have the military resources I've heard you talk about. Those enemies will take precedence over the Cylons and our 50,000 people. Right now, though, you consider this system under threat of Cylon attack, so you're willing to turn your attention to them. Given that, I'm willing to send a couple of my men to help you.''

O'Neill nodded.

"Bring them back, O'Neill,'' Adama continued, nodding towards Apollo and Starbuck. "They are all the family I have left.''

O'Neill nodded again, and turned towards Apollo and Starbuck. "So, are you two kids brother and sister?'' he asked, in what he thought of as his "bright'' tone.

Starbuck answered back, "It's complicated. Lee will tell you all about it on the trip to your Stargate.''


Teal'c and Mitchell arrived an hour later via rings. With them were the Galactica guards, looking somewhat hungover, Valerii, and Baltar.

"Why did you bring them along, Teal'c?'' asked O'Neill.

"They insisted, O'Neill. Lieutenant Valerii says that her presence will greatly aid us in our endeavor.''

"It will aid your capture!'' shouted Tigh, "it's a trap!''

"Well, now, Colonel,'' drawled Mitchell, "she's convinced us otherwise.''

"I know about Saturn,'' said Valerii, "all of the Cylons do. Most of them call him God. I know Saturn is not a god - and I know that I do not want Saturn to have this child, but the only thing that will keep you from being immediately destroyed is if I am there - Saturn will not have me killed, at least until the baby is born. I have to go along. If I'm killed, at least Saturn won't get my baby.''

O'Neill rarely relied on gut feelings, but this time he thought he should. He did a quick pole of his team. All seemed in favor, even Carter. If it was a trap, well then the odds weren't much different than they would have been if they went in without Valerii as a shield. "OK, we'll take you, if Adama and President Roslin agree.''

Roslin looked at Adama, who shrugged. He wasn't going along, anyway. "I agree, General. However, I'm going along with you. I had a dream of talking with the Cylon God, and I think I should follow up on that.''

"President Roslin's dreams have been pretty prophetic, General,'' said Adama, "take her along. You can have Apollo and Starbuck as well. They have experience fighting Cylons, which you lack.''

O'Neill thought about it for a minute. The younger Adama was obviously a fighter, and he didn't doubt Starbuck's ability. They could at least protect Roslin and Valerii while his team found Saturn.

Which left one loose end. "What about him?'' he said, pointing to Baltar, "why is he here?''

"I'm here under protest, General,'' said Baltar, "you have not yet ruled on my request for asylum, and now you've dragged me back to the Galactica.''

"Oh, quiet,'' said Valerii, "you're here because you'll be of help. You understand the Cylon warriors better than anyone. After all, your grandfather helped Saturn design the original Cylons.''

"What? He did no such thing. I never knew my grandfather, my father was an orphan.''

"He was after Saturn killed your grandfather. And rewired the genetic code of your father's offspring. Don't you wonder why you see Six? She's in your brain.''

Baltar looked extremely shocked. He thought about denying it, but realized he wouldn't be believed. "How did you know?''

"I didn't, until we came aboard,'' said Valerii, "the more we talk about Saturn the more I remember. He and your father created the Cylons to be used as slave labor for the Colonies. Saturn set it up so that the mechanical Cylons would be driven off, and then he would have a chance to modify them to produce humanoid Cylons, fulfilling his plan. He'd been trying cross-breeding schemes ever since he got to Kobol. I think the reason that Karl and I were able to conceive was because he'd tinkered with the Agathon line at some point.'' She looked at Starbuck. "That's why the baby farms you saw on Caprica never worked - not the right genetic match. Karl and I were perfect.''

"But how-why do I see Six?'' asked Baltar.

"Saturn knew that the Cylons would need help to eventually overcome the Colonials, so he wired you to feed you information to make you a computer genius, and to be susceptible to her attentions when the time came. Why do you think you fell so easily?''

"I've been manipulated by Saturn?''

"All of your life.'' Valerii turned to O'Neill, "somewhere inside of that thick skull is information on how to control the mechanical Cylons. Put him in a life-threatening position and it will come out.''

O'Neill and Adama went to one side of the room and put their heads together. Tigh tried to join in, but O'Neill blocked him off. After a few minutes, they rejoined the group.

Adama spoke, "General O'Neill and I both think that having Valerii and Baltar along will increase the chances of success. General O'Neill will lead the team, along with his SG-1. Captain Adama, Lieutenant Thrace, and President Roslin will accompany them. I'd like to send more, but we need to scout around first. Reinforcements will be sent, if needed, and if we can. Now,'' he turned to O'Neill, "how do we get to your Stargate?''

"Find the gas giant in this system. It has a heavily armed moon,'' answered O'Neill.

"The one that my Vipers were going to investigate ...''

"Until I called them off,'' finished Roslin.

"I'd better call ahead,'' said O'Neill, "after the fight, they might be a little trigger happy.''

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Russell W. Quong (
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