Bastet brandished a pain stick and scowled. Her Jaffa cringed in fear. The Sholva, Teal’c, had been rescued from their custody and someone was going to suffer for that loss.
A troop of Jaffa marched into the throne room hustling a prisoner along between them. Bastet’s First Prime saluted his goddess. “Good news, Lord Bastet,” he announced. “We have captured one of the other members of SG-1 as they attempted to escape with the Sholva.”
Bastet stared at the small, grey-furred, Tau’ri. “I recognize this one not,” she said.
“This is Skippy, my Lord,” the First Prime informed her, “the replacement for Daniel Jackson.”
The System Lord raised an eyebrow. “A strange and alien being,” she said. “Skippy of SG-1, kneel before your goddess.”
Skippy gesticulated with her paws, although her movements were hampered by the grips of two muscular Jaffa, and made chittering noises.
“What is that you say, Skippy?” Bastet asked.
“I will translate,” the First Prime offered. “As closely as I can interpret, she says ‘Stone the bleeding crows, you daft Sheila, look at my legs. Not a bloody knee in sight.’ Her language is disrespectful, Highness, but she does have a point.”
Skippy chittered some more.
“She offers to go down on all fours as an alternative to kneeling,” the First Prime translated.
“That would be acceptable,” Bastet conceded.
Skippy bent forward and touched the ground with her front paws. In the process the Jaffa holding her arms were compelled to let go. The moment she was free Skippy took off in a giant leap. She soared over a line of Jaffa, changed direction, and made a rapid hop sideways just as they turned round and opened fire. Skippy jinked, twisted, and dodged, in a series of lightning-fast short hops, weaving in and out of the confused Jaffa. Several fell to friendly staff blasts and zat charges. With a sudden reversal of direction Skippy threw their aim off totally, made it clear of the Jaffa altogether, and hopped out through the ha’tak’s Death Glider launching bay onto the planet’s surface.
“After her!” Bastet shouted. The Jaffa rushed to obey.
Skippy ducked down behind a bush. When she came up she was holding her P-90 in her paws. She sprayed the Jaffa with a burst of fire, forcing them to dive for cover, and then took off again at top speed. She made for the Chapa’ai, traveling faster than any Jaffa could run, and was out of sight before anyone could even climb into the cockpit of a Death Glider.
“We have to go back for Skippy, sir,” Sam said.
“Indeed,” Teal’c agreed. “The marsupial was most valiant in rescuing me from captivity. To leave her in the hands of Bastet would not be honorable.”
“Right,” said Jack. “We don’t leave anyone behind.”
“I’ll organize a rescue operation,” General Hammond said. “If Bastet has a ha’tak there, and presumably a full complement of assault troops, we can’t match her in strength. It’ll have to be a small group, using stealth, but with as much heavy weaponry as we can muster. SG-3, of course, and SG-12, plus yourselves.”
“Unauthorized Gate activation!” The alarm sounded as the Stargate’s chevrons locked into place and the event horizon formed. The Security detail rushed to their positions.
“Receiving IDC, sir,” a technician reported. “It’s… sir, it’s Skippy!”
“Open the iris,” Hammond ordered. He headed for the Gate room, SG-1 at his heels, and made it there just in time to see the missing kangaroo hop through the Gate onto the ramp.
“Welcome back, Skippy,” Hammond greeted. “Report. How did you get free?”
Skippy sat back on her haunches, gesticulated, and chittered.
“What’s that you say, Skippy?” Hammond asked.
“She says ‘No dramas, General, cobber. I wasn’t going to be beaten by that Goa’uld Bastet’,” Jack translated.
“You are mistaken, O’Neill,” Teal’c corrected him. “The marsupial Skippy did not, in fact, say ‘Bastet’.”