From Freezer to Table
Disclaimer: Stargate SG-1 and its characters are the property of Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, and Gekko Productions. I have written this story for entertainment purposes only and no money whatsoever has exchanged hands. No copyright infringement is intended. The original characters, situations, and story are the property of the author(s).
From Freezer to Table
He was huddled on his side in the corner of the large room and curled up into as small
a space as possible for a man of his size.
I thought he was dead.
Teal'c stayed at the door, keeping the locals back, while Daniel and I hurried to check
on the Colonel.
His skin was grey, bordering on blue, and he wasn't moving, not even reacting when
we knelt beside him. I put my fingers on the carotid artery in his neck and waited,
hoping. It seemed minutes before I felt a faint and very slow throb.
Daniel was watching me anxiously and I nodded. "He's alive."
"Jack?" Daniel's fear showed in his voice as he put a hand on O'Neill's rigid
shoulder. "He's freezing."
He began to turn him and I shouted, knowing I had to stop him.
"No!" He paused, looking at me in shock and I hurried on. "Don't move him." I
pointed to his side and legs where his skin was a raw red color. "The cold is burning
him." Already I could feel the chill through the cloth of my uniform. "Don't let any
more of his skin touch the floor than it already has." Pulling my pack from my back, I
began removing my sleeping bag and unfurling it, laying it on the floor as near to
Colonel O'Neill as I could. "We have to be very careful and move him as gently as
I stood, knowing we had to move the Colonel off the freezing floor as quickly as
possible, but also knowing the risks of moving a person with severe hypothermia.
Even the slightest movement could stop his already stressed heart.
A flash of light accompanied the sound of a staff weapon discharge and I moved
rapidly to the doorway, my weapon at the ready.
"They attempted to advance on my position, Major Carter. I dissuaded them. I do not
think they will do so again."
The body lying in the hallway, a large hole smouldering in its chest was evidence of
my teammate's rather drastic method of persuasion. I felt no inclination to criticise.
We had all seen the kitchen.
And the chopping board.
I'm warm. That's the first thing I notice, then the dull ache of numbed injuries.
This time, for a change, I actually remember why I'm lying flat on my back on this
Damn natives tried to turn me into an ice sculpture.
I open my eyes, not able to do more, hoping against hope that I'm not still in that
dungeon and that they haven't just decided to turn on the furnace.
A masked face looks down at me and I blink.
Definitely not one of the locals.
It's Doc Fraiser and her mouth is moving but I can't hear anything as I drift away.
The first few days pass in a blur of soft voices and quiet footsteps. I'm cocooned, not
just in blankets but in the nurses' professional concern. I think I scared them this time
and I also think I know why. I'm a graduate of the SERE wilderness survival training.
I know I'm lucky to be alive.
Warm air wafts around me, soothing my burning skin, while machines chug and beep
and needles pull gently at my veins.
And I coast through the days, gradually warming up.
My first visitors, other than Janet and her staff, creep timidly into the room. I manage
a faint welcome and reach for the water to wet my dry throat, only to have it held so I
can drink. I nod my thanks to Daniel and rest my head back on the pillow after a few
sips, already tired, the multitude of healing cuts covering my body sending messages
of protest at even the smallest movement.
"You're looking better, sir."
I didn't doubt it, so I smile. "Thanks to you guys. Saved by the skin of my teeth this
time, I hear."
But I left a great deal of said skin back on that planet - fortunately only a thin layer,
but the healing spots were as itchy as hell.
"You gave us quite a scare."
Daniel has moved around the side of the bed and I watch as he peers at all the
equipment still attached to me, his head cocked to one side as he looks at the various
readouts. Goodness knows what he expects to learn, and he obviously comes to the
same conclusion I did days ago - that most of them are just there to look impressive -
because he soon walks back to stand next to Teal'c.
He's staring at me now, looking me up and down as if I'm one of his artefacts.
"What?" I admit it comes out a little sharper than I intended.
He gives an affronted sigh. "No need to get huffy, Jack."
For some reason my team seems to find this extremely amusing, even Teal'c gives a
quickly stifled snigger.
I can't muster the energy to protest or to even keep my eyes open to glare at them.
There are some muttered admonishments and then Carter's voice comes from close to
my ear as if she is bending near to me.
"We'll come back tomorrow, Colonel." She drops her voice to a whisper and I feel her
breath flutter against my cheek. "I always thought you were good enough to eat, sir."
Totally confused, I snuggle back under the covers, relishing the warmth.
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