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26 December 2006 @ 02:36 pm
Fic: What's Simple is True, 2/10 (SG1, 12A/PG-13)  
What’s Simple is True
By Kyizi

Disclaimer:
Stargate: SG1 and all related items do not belong to me. Only the story and all original characters therein are mine. No copyright infringement intended.

All notes etc in Chapter One


Previous Chapters

| Part One |


* * *

Part Two

* * *



He was smiling at her. That was the way she liked to remember him. He always seemed to be happy, in varying degrees, but he was always happy. He could make her smile whenever she was sad, whenever she missed her family, or her friends, or any part of her old life. There were times when all she had wanted was to see her father or her visit her brother and his family or…anyone else from before. She knew those times showed on her face and she knew that they scared her children, especially Liam, scared them because the children knew nothing of her old life, of who she really was, or who their father was. They knew nothing about her past and now she had to introduce them to it.

Sam stared at the photograph one last time, before placing it into the bag. She was trying to economise, trying to take as little as possible with her, but there were photographs she could not live without, memories that she had to take. She picked up the last of her clothes and placed them on the top of her bag, hoping that it would close. She had packed the girl’s things, but allowed Liam to take his own. It made him feel a little more grown up and there was no room in her case as it was.

There was a thump against the wall as Liam closed his cabinet with a lot more force than was necessary and she closed her eyes. She had no idea how to explain this to him. How could she tell her eleven year old son that his father was an alien with magical powers, which meant that he was half alien and that he seemed to have some powers as well? She knew he had wanted to be superman when he was younger, but she doubted this was what he had in mind, it certainly hadn’t been her plan for his life. She wanted answers about this, but more than anything she just wanted to keep him safe and that made her question her decision.

She was terrified. As much as she wanted to go back to a lot of things in her past, there was a lot that scared her, and the safety of her children was the biggest fear. She knew that the government would try to take them to perform tests and she was not about to let that happen. But she needed to find out more.

She had no idea what had been going on at the SGC over the last fourteen or so years, but she hoped that Daniel might have some answers. She prayed that Sha’uri’s son might have returned to them at some point and that he would be able to help her understand what was happening to Liam. He had been taken and raised by one of Orlin's people and that gave her hope, even if it was just a small amount.

She glanced at her clock and her stomach twisted. It was almost time to pick up the twins from school. “Liam, are you packed?” When there was no reply, Sam sighed and picked up her case before going to his room. “Liam, are you ready to go?” He still didn’t reply and Sam sat next to him on the bed. His case was at their feet and it was closed, but Sam didn’t reach for it, instead she placed hers next to it.

“I know you’re scared, honey, but it’ll be okay. We’re going on a trip and we’ll find out what’s been happening to you.” Liam made no indication that he had heard her and he made no move to answer. Sam put her arm around him and pulled him close, kissing the top of his head. “We’ll get through this, I promise.” She leaned down and picked up their bags. She reached for him and pulled him to his feet, leading him out of the house.

The drive back to the school was quiet and Sam kept glancing to the passenger seat, making sure that Liam was… what she didn’t know, but she kept checking on him all the same. She made a quick call to her work, Isabelle had already gone but Sam left a message telling her that she had a family emergency and she would be in touch soon.

She parked outside the school gates just as children began to stream out of the building. It didn’t take the girls long to spot her and they hurried into the back seats, quickly fastening their seatbelts.

“Hey, guess what,” Sam said, leaning between the front seats to look at her daughters. “We’re going on a little trip.”

“Yeay!” Alice bounced in her seat, but Sarah was frowning at her.

“What is it, honey?”

“Some people at school were calling Liam names.”

Sam tried to keep her façade in place as she falsely smiled at them. “Don’t you worry about that, we’re going on a plane and we’re going to have a nice holiday, okay?” Alice grinned and nodded enthusiastically, but her sister seemed rather reluctant. Sam squeezed Sarah’s knee before turning back to the steering wheel. She let out a breath and checked her mirrors, aware that there were people staring at them through the windows, and glanced at Liam who barely seemed aware of anything, he certainly hadn’t acknowledged Alice and Sarah, and he was still as silent as the moment she had seen him in the school office.

She started the engine and pulled away from the school, wanting nothing more than to be on the plane. She had no idea what lay in store for her at the SGC, but she suddenly had the feeling that there was nowhere else she would rather be. All she had to do was hope that there would be a warm reception waiting for her when she got there.


* * *


It hadn't taken as long to fly as Sam had hoped, and nine hours later she was sitting in the hotel room, unpacking their cases. For what seemed like a lifetime away, very little seemed to have changed, at least so far. The city remained the same, most of the housing estates they had driven through, while the numbers had increased, were no different. It was almost like walking through a memory and a large part of her was just waiting until she woke up to find it had been a surreal dream, that she would wake up and Orlin would smile at her and tell her that everything was fine.

"Momma, I'm tired."

Sam turned to the bed, smiling as Sarah rubbed her eyes with her small fists. Alice had fallen asleep the minute she had lain on the bed, but Sarah, as always, seemed to have too much running through her mind to reach the same dreamland.

"Then close your eyes and go to sleep."

"I tried, it won't work. And Ali keeps kicking me."

Sam smiled and looked at her other daughter at the bottom of the bed. As usual, Alice had taken up most of the bed. She was sprawled all over it and half way down it, so that her feet were more than halfway onto Sarah's half. Sam walked across the room and gently pulled Alice back to the bottom of the bed and tucked her in, before moving to Sarah and doing the same.

"Now then, little bit, let's get you off to sleep."

"Momma, will you sing me a lubaly?"

Sam smiled. "You mean a lullaby?" Sarah stuck out her tongue and Sam ruffled her hair. As much as she saw Orlin in Liam, she couldn't deny that the girls were all her. There was a slightness about their faces that was the same as their fathers, but their identical long blonde curls and sparkling blue eyes were carbon copies of her. Softly she began to sing the whisper of a song, a gentle lullaby that she had heard Orlin singing to them so many times, knowing that Sarah didn’t care that she couldn’t carry the tune well.

"Sleep sweet, little child,
Close your eyes, my precious one
And sleep won't pass you by.
Hold my hand, little child,
The world is far below.
Come and find the dream land in the sky."

Sam continued to hum softly, lulling her daughter into sleep, before sitting quietly over her. For a moment, she just watched as Sarah's breathing slowed and the girl finally fell asleep. She leaned to kiss her daughter's forehead before moving back to the other bed to unpack the rest of their things. When that was done, Sam glanced at the empty bed on the other side of the room and sighed. It was getting late and she desperately wanted to sleep, but she knew she would not be able to until she could be sure that her son was okay.

Walking out onto the balcony, she shivered; glad she had picked up a blanket on her way out. She sat on the chair next to Liam and curled her feet under her. He still hadn't spoken and Sam didn't know what to tell him. She knew that the truth about his father would be too hard to accept at the best of times, but at that moment she knew it would have made him hate Orlin, and that was something she could not handle. Instead, she decided to give him another target.

She reached out and pulled Liam into her side and he didn't resist. She pulled the blanket tight around them both and kissed his head before speaking. "Honey, I know you're confused at the moment and I know you don't understand why I've brought you here, but there's something I need to tell you. I know you always wondered why I was so sad sometimes and I know your dad never told you either. Liam, I'm not…" her voice faltered. How could she tell her son that she had lied to him all his life?

She took a deep breath, "Liam, I used to be a different person. Before you were born, your father and I lived a different life, but it was something we had to run away from, to protect us and to protect you and Alice and Sarah. But these are the only people I know that can help you and I need you to know that things are going to be a little different. I know it's a lot to ask you, honey, but I need you to be strong, I need you to be strong for all of us."


***

"Are we going to the zoo?"

"No, Alice, we're-"

"Are we going to the park?"

"No, we-"

"Are we going to-"

"Can we visit a moosum?"

"Museum, little bit, and no. We're going to visit some old friends of mommy's, okay?"

"Can we go someplace after?"

Sam laughed a little. "We'll see." Alice and Sarah were more excited than she had seen them in a long time. She only wished that Liam could feel the same. She wished that they really were on a family holiday.

The drive to his house seemed to be as much second nature as it had always been, despite the fact that she had spent very little time there. Most of their time together had been on base or off world, but she still felt like she knew everything as well as she always had. She only hoped he still lived there and that he would be at home.

A few minutes later, she stopped outside and took a deep breath. She turned to Liam and touched his shoulder, he didn't speak, but he did turn to look at her. "I need you to stay here and look after the girls, okay?" He nodded and she smiled, squeezing his shoulder before turning to the back seats. "You girls be good, I'll be back in a minute, okay?"

"Okay!" they screeched in unison.

"Girls! Quiet down," she said with a laugh.

Sam stepped out of the car and tapped the window, ensuring that Liam locked the doors, before turning to look at the building. Despite being a little older and slightly more run down, it looked almost exactly as she remembered. She took a deep breath and quickly made her way up the stairs to his doorway, hesitating a little before she knocked.

After what seemed like a long time, she heard movement behind the door and a few seconds later it slowly creaked open. An elderly woman smiled at her, slightly confused.

"Hi, I'm sorry, I'm looking for Dr. Daniel Jackson. He used to live here?"

"Oh! Hello dear. No, no, that lovely Dr. Jackson moved out a long time ago. Must be five or six years now, he and that lovely wife of his moved into a pretty little house in Wallace Road. You know, down by the post office. Lovely couple they are, lovely neighbourhood as well. I swear, if my Bernard were alive, I'd make sure he got me one of them fancy houses too!"

Sam smiled and laughed. "Well, thank you. I'm sorry to bother you."

"No bother. If you wait here, they should be by soon."

"They'll be coming here?" Sam asked, panic suddenly gripping her at the knowledge that she was going to see Daniel. Somehow the fact that he was going to arrive to find her was worse than her knocking on his door.

"Oh, yes! Like I said, lovely couple. They come by every Tuesday with my shopping. I can't make it up the stairs with all those bags. No, they bring them for me. Lovely couple."

"Oh, well, my children are in the car and-"

"Children? Oh, well, you go and get them and I'll have some biscuits all laid out for them."

"I don't want to put you to any trouble, Mrs…"

"Oh, call me Rose, dear, and its no trouble at all, anything for a friend of Daniel." With that Rose moved back into the house, leaving the door slightly ajar, obviously so that Sam could get back in when she returned with the kids.

She headed out to the car, slightly unsure as to exactly what she was doing. She tapped the window and Liam unlocked the door. She leaned in and put a big smile on her face. "Hey guys, come on, lets go up."

"If your friend there?" Alice asked as she unclipped her seatbelt.

"No, not yet, but he should be coming soon to visit the lady that lives there now."

"Do we have to wait for him?" Sarah asked, moving over to Alice's side of the car so that they could get out when Sam opened the door.

"Yes, is that okay?"

"Uh huh, will your friend come to the moosum with us?"

"No, the park!"

Sam laughed and opened the door to let them out, "Sorry, Ali, but I think he'd prefer the museum, but he might be busy. So I don't want you two forcing him into anything, do you hear me?"

The girls nodded and Sam closed the back door, leaning in to the front again. "Come on, Liam."

Five minutes later, they were sitting in Rose's living room and Sam almost laughed at how completely different it looked. The walls, once white, were a rather bright shade of pink, nothing too brash, but bright enough that Sam could see Daniel wincing every time he entered the room. Also, there were vases of flowers dotted here and there, something Sam knew Daniel would never have. He took regular medication to help with his allergies, but his job was dangerous enough without further tempting fate by having flowers in the house. Yes, she was sure Daniel must cringe at the way his old apartment looked now, but at the same time, it seemed to fit Rose perfectly.

The girls were sitting on the floor with some colouring books that Rose had hidden away, and given that they were half full, Sam assumed the woman had grandchildren. Liam, however, was sitting quietly on the chair, holding onto his glass of milk and Sam was almost mortified that he hadn't answered any of Rose's questions with anything more than a nod of the head.

There was a click from the hallway and the voice that followed almost had Sam jumping out of the nearest window. "Rose? Where are you?"

"Oh, we're in the living room, Daniel."

"We?"

Sam turned to the doorway, a half smile on her face as Daniel entered. Just as she had suspected, there was a slight wince on his face as he glanced at the decor. He smiled at her and turned to Rose. He opened his mouth to speak, but stopped, his eyes widening as he turned back to face her, unable to speak.

"Hi, Daniel."

There was a pause. Nobody said a word and the twins had stopped colouring to stare at the 'strange man in the doorway who was moving his mouth like a fish'. The moment was broken only when a voice echoed through the hallway. "Daniel, can you come give me a hand with these, Katie dropped a bag in the hall and she's not moving?"

When Daniel didn't reply, a young brunette entered the room, frowning. "Daniel, didn't you hear me?"

"I, eh, sorry, sure. I'll go get Katie."

The woman glanced at Sam again and a sudden recognition sparked in her eyes. "No, it's okay, I'll go, you stay here and, well, I'll go." She left the room just as the sounds of a child crying floated into the room.

Sam stood up and walked nervously to her friend. "Hi, Daniel," she said again, softer this time.

"Sam." Daniel broke into a grin and pulled her into his arms, holding onto her tightly.

They stood there, holding each other for a long time, not moving until a small voice said, "Who's daddy hugging?" They both pulled apart laughing and looked at the small girl who was staring up at them with the cutest look of confusion Sam had seen on any child. This was definitely Daniel's daughter.

Sam kneeled down beside her and held out her hand. The little girl shook it and Sam smiled. "Hi there, my name's Annie,"

"I'm Katie. Do you know my daddy?"

"I do."

"Eh, Sam?" Sam looked up at him and almost laughed at the look on his face. It was all but identical to the look she had seen on his daughter's face a few moments before. "I know that's been your alias for a long time, but last I checked your real name wasn't actually Annie."

"Oh!" Sam was surprised, having not even given a second thought to what she was saying. She was Annie, but she was also Sam, and to her that wasn't a confusing issue. "Yeah, we have a lot to talk about Daniel."

"Yes, but first can you tell my daughter that you're Sam? She's been waiting a long time to meet her Auntie Sam."

"Auntie Sam?" Katie squealed and threw her arms around Sam.

"Wow!" Sam laughed. "If I'd known I was going to get this reception, I would have said I was Sam right away!"

There was giggling behind her and Sam turned to see the twins staring at her. Alice scrunched up her face. "Momma, Sam's a boy's name! You're Annie."

"Looks like I'm not the only one with a family," Daniel said with a smile and Sam stood up. "Sorry, Sam, this is my wife, Amy. She works at the, well, she works with us at the base."

Sam nodded and turned to Amy, shaking the woman's hand. "It's nice to meet you."

Amy smiled. "Actually, we've met before. You probably don't remember me, though."

Sam frowned and looked at her again. "You do look familiar, but I can't place it."

"I was a member of 7 when you were on the base."

"Of course! You were the young lieutenant that used to run the betting pool!"

Daniel and Amy laughed before the woman replied, "Yeah, that was me. I made a lot of money on that pool. Lost a lot as well."

"Yeah," Daniel said, looking at Sam. "We all did." There was an uncomfortable moment and Sam was sure Daniel was referring to something that involved her, but no one commented on it. There was more giggling from behind her and Sam turned as Daniel smiled again. "So are you going to introduce us, Sam?"

"Oh, sorry! Girls, I want you to come and meet your Uncle Daniel. Daniel, this is Alice and this is Sarah."

"How can you tell them apart?" Daniel asked, laughing as he kneeled down to receive a double hug.

"Trust me, it's not always easy! And this," Sam said turning to indicate her son, "is Liam."

Amy smiled and moved towards him. "Hey there, Liam."

When Liam didn't say anything, Rose spoke for him. "He's a little shy, Amy. Must be all the new people."

"Of course." Amy smiled and sat next to him on the arm of his chair. "We'll talk later."

"So, Sam," Daniel said, sitting on the settee, smiling when the twins sat either side of him and Katie crawled onto his lap. "As much as I'm thrilled to see you, I'm guessing this isn't a social visit. You got my messages I take it."

"Messages?" Sam frowned, suddenly remembering that Isabelle had mentioned a gentleman had been trying to get in touch with her. "That was you? No, with…everything that was happening, I didn't get the chance to listen to your messages."

"Then you don't know about General Hammond?"

Sam sat at the edge of the couch, sure she knew what was coming, but not willing to let herself believe it. "What about General Hammond?"

Daniel gave her a sad smile. "He died last week, Sam."



* * *


Sam walked slowly through the trees, feeling as if she had never left. All around her were names in stone, and she felt so guilty because all her thoughts were on Orlin. She was there to visit Hammond and she had to force herself to remember him and that made her feel even worse. She had so many regrets about her old life, and not keeping in touch had been necessary, but it was her biggest regret. She always remembered their birthdays, any days that were special to them; she always prayed for Jack on the anniversary of Charlie's death. But Jack was someone she definitely did not want to think about at that moment.

Daniel had known that she would want to visit Hammond's grave, and she had been eternally grateful when Amy and Daniel had offered to take the children out somewhere, dropping her at the graveyard along the way. She had crept slowly out of the car, not so much worried about leaving the children with Daniel, as leaving Liam's situation – which she had yet to explain – with them.

Thoughts of her children, however, were soon forced to make way for memories of the past. After hearing the news, Sam had sat in silence, absolutely stunned. Hammond was not that old, and in her eyes he never would be. The image that she retained in her mind was of a man full of life. A family man. A man she had known for so long that he was a part of her family, a part of her life that she had one day hoped to share with her children. And now they would never have that chance to know him. And she would never have that chance to say sorry, to apologise for running away. As memories assaulted her senses, she found herself wishing that same thing she always did; she wished for nothing more than to be with her father.

She wasn't sure when her tears had started, but they continued to flow and she felt so much anger at the situation and at herself. She had been the one who had removed herself from his life, from her life at the SGC and she hated herself for it. But she could never change her decision, even if time itself would bend to her will, she could never change it. If she changed her past, she would erase her children and her life with Orlin. Their lives as Annie and Kevin Walker hadn't been easy, but they had been able to live, even though they carried with them the constant fear that they would be tracked down.

Sighing, she turned up the path, walked by four rows of graves and stopped at the fifth, just as Daniel had told her. She slowly walked past the graves one at a time, reading the names until she reached his; General George Hammond. Daniel had told her on the drive that General Hammond had retired only a year after she had left, so she wasn't surprised that his rank was the same, what she was surprised by was the fact that she was not alone at his grave. She was with the one person she did not want to face.

Slowly, he turned around, his surprise written all over his face. "Sam?"

She took a deep breath, and offered him a nervous smile. "Hi, Jack."


* * *


The silence was almost claustrophobic in its intensity and Sam wasn't sure how long it was before she actually remembered to breathe again. She had not wanted to run into him like that, just out of the blue. There were things that people just needed time to prepare for and this was one of them. So many things from her past had been creeping into her thoughts since Orlin's death, so many things that she had tried to forget that continued to resurface in her mind.

Her memories, although in perfect condition, seemed like dreams; as if they were part of a life she had never lived rather than one she had simply tried to forget. She had held onto everything for so long that it was making her miserable and Orlin had almost left her. Until she had got pregnant with Liam, she had felt as if her life was slipping away from her, as if she had lost her identity among the lies. But Liam had changed that, he had given them both a new reason to keep on fighting. And she had. She had fought until they had forgotten that was what she had been doing. And the people she had left behind had been lost.

Her focus returned to Jack as he stood up, looking at her as if she was about to disappear any second. She studied him, took in every inch of him. He hadn't changed much; his hair was definitely thinning and a lot greyer than she remembered. The lines on his face were etched more into the fabric of his skin and he had a noticeable scar above his left eyebrow that she didn't remember having seen before. He was wearing blue jeans, a white t-shirt and the leather jacket she had always loved to see him in, and she felt as if she had slipped back in time.

He continued to stare at her and after a few more minutes, she began to shift uncomfortably. It wasn't as if she'd never been under his gaze before, in fact, a part of her used to love it when his eyes had seemed to be searching out her soul, but things were different now. She was different now. Everything had changed since that last time she had looked into those eyes and she wasn't so sure that she was ready for him to judge her yet.

"You grew your hair."

Of all the things Sam had expected to hear, that was the last thing on her mind. She allowed the edge of her mouth to quirk into a small smile and nodded, her right hand instinctively reaching up to play with the edge of her hair.

"There was nothing to stop me anymore."

His eyes hardened and she instantly knew that was the wrong thing to say. The Air Force couldn't have stopped her because she had run away from it; she had run away from her old life, she had run away from him. She closed her eyes and tried to think of something to say, anything that could bring some kind of peace to the conversation, but when she opened her eyes again, she didn't have to say anything, because she was standing in front of General Hammond's grave alone.


* * *

Part Three

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