Chapter Twenty-nine Summary - When Sam and Daniel reach his room, Kataya appears to be fine and she is studying what appears to be a blueprint. Sam and Kat discuss Bastet/Morgasha, the upcoming battle, and the prophecy. Sam finds out a little more about herself as a Furling and her relationship to Artereos. Daniel and Kataya spend an evening at their home and Daniel remembers some painful things from the past and makes some unsettling discoveries about the present.
Igisadonis – Beloved Sevesh Lok Twin – A Rite of Release Amat Wyn – My Love Caruswyn – Dear One, Dearest One Carusawyn – My dear one, My Dearest One Coeurawyn – My Heart Sevesh’en Twine Coeuramator – Entwining of the Heartmates Amata Tu, Semper – I Love You, Always Et Aevum – For/Into Eternity “Italics” – Symbiote-Host or Telepathic communication
Daniel burst into their quarters, with Sam close behind him, and skidded to a halt.
“Daniel? What is wrong? Has something happened?” Kataya asked anxiously, as she looked up from where she sat studying what looked like a blueprint.
Daniel gasped to catch his breath. “Nothing is wrong. Sam told me that you talked to Lantash, and I was concerned that is all.”
“I am fine, Daniel. We received the plans for Bastet’s stronghold, and I have been studying them. Lantash and I came to an understanding, Beloved. He will go through the Sevesh Lok Twin in a few days,” she said placidly, obviously not concerned in any way.
“Days? Kataya you do not have days,” Daniel blurted out anxiously. “How can he expect that of you? Besides that, how can you allow him to wait that long?”
“I will have to have days, Daniel. Merdwin and I will work on it, so, please do not worry so.” She stood up from her chair, and walking over to him, she kissed him briefly.
Turning to Samantha, she asked, “Has Lantash spoken to you about our discussion, Sam? I hope he is not so upset now?” It was very obvious that she was concerned about his reaction.
“He told me about it, Kat. He didn’t understand how I could be so accepting, but I explained about what I learned during our link, and I think he is more accepting of everything. I don’t think it will be very long before he can bring himself to go through with the Sevesh Lok Twin with you,” Sam told her quietly, reassuring her that she understood what occurred between them.
“I am glad. I have not yet had time to talk to Daniel about the link; I had planned to do so this evening, at his home. I am looking forward to my first evening there,” Kataya responded relieved and now seemingly serene about the entire situation.
“Our home,” Daniel corrected, as he broke into their conversation. “I need to look at a few things for Sam, and then I will be ready to leave for our home. Are you about ready to go?” He asked, after emphasizing and conveying his feelings on the subject of what he considered “their” home now.
“I will be ready to go to our home whenever you come for me, Amat Wyn,” she stated, stressing the possessive just as he had, so that he would know that she understood and agreed with him.
Nodding his own acknowledgement, Daniel smiled at her once more before leaving the room, and Kat turned to Samantha. “Lantash felt guilty for what he considered a betrayal of you, of course. I should have thought of that and attempted to mitigate it.”
“It is all right, Kat. I think he understands better now. I am glad he has agreed to the Sevesh Lok Twin. It will not be very long before both of you become ill. He is experiencing chest pain.”
“I have no doubt that he is. Lantash must be working at keeping it minimized, but he will not be able to control it much longer,” Kataya explained briefly, before telling her, “Samantha, I am sorry I did not have more strength today. I should have been more prepared and less willing to give in to Lantash.” She smiled sadly, thinking that today had been the first time she had ever denied him.
“I do understand, Kat. This entire thing is hard on all of us. Lantash needs to go through the Sevesh Lok Twin. We both know that, and we both know what a strain this is placing on you both. Don’t forget that I shared your emotions; I know what you are feeling. Even now, I can feel them, and I don’t know how the two of you stopped when you did,” Sam said softly.
“I believe, Carusawyn, that much as Lantash and I love one another, we also have a deeper love, which neither of us is truly willing to betray. I was not willing to do that to Daniel, and Lantash was not willing to do that to you. For that matter, neither was I, Samantha.” Kataya laughed a little, her voice shaky, and confessed, “I have to admit that I wished to have him though. It is the first time I ever denied him access to my body, Sam. It was—hard and—painful. Thank the Universe, once the Sevesh Lok Twin is performed and our blood is no longer tied, the passionate part of our love will basically be gone, and the loving friendship will take its place.”
Sam nodded, stating, “I am not sure I could have stopped in your place, as strong as the passion is between the two of you. In one way, it is really hard knowing that exists between you, but it also allows me to accept what is happening and gives me more patience with him. It must be terrible for him, too. You, at least, have had months to realize it would need to take place, if he was nearby. He has barely had a couple of days really to think about it. I truly do understand and sympathize, Kat. I will be glad when it is over, too.”
Sam frowned in thought, before saying slowly, “I am not sure that I understand what the Sevesh Lok Twin will do, Kat. I mean, wasn’t there passion between the…the three of you before you went through the Sevesh’en Twine Coeuramator? How can cutting the ties remove that?”
Kataya smiled wryly, before saying, “I wondered how long it would be before someone realized that and began to question the results of, and hence the reason for, the Sevesh; however, I thought it would be Daniel.” She waved her hand through the air before her, as if brushing something aside, before she continued, “To answer your questions, Sam. Yes, there was a great deal of passion prior to the Sevesh’en Twine Coeuramator. How the Sevesh Lok Twin removes it is a simple matter to explain, not so easily lived through.” Her voice was sardonic as she murmured the last statement. “The Sevesh’en does not engender the passion. The entwining of the blood binds the passion for all time unless removed, just as the entwining of the auras binds the love and commitment one to the other.”
She paused once more, nibbling her bottom lip, as she considered how to explain the process. It was neither complicated nor particularly difficult to explain, however, she was not sure where to start the explanation. Remembering the mind-link, she realized that Sam would already know what took place during the Sevesh’en, but possibly not exactly what the different events meant. “I believe you took part in the Sevesh’en during our link, yes? Therefore, you know what occurs. During the Entwining, each lover’s blood leaves their bodies and seeks its mate’s blood. You know that it reenters both of them. The blood carries the mate’s passion within it, and it now resides within the mate. As long as they remain together, they will always feel the tie between them. If they should part, as we were forced to do, it becomes…quiescent, dormant, in a way, although the mates will still yearn for the physical aspect, as well as the love, just as any other loving mates would. Remember, I said that it did not cause the passion between the lovers.”
Once more, she paused, weighing her words, before continuing, “The answer to your question, though, lies with Daniel and you. The tie between Lantash and I is very strong, as you know. However, my tie to Daniel is stronger, and it is the pulling of the two ties that is causing the problem now. I want both, because both are near to me. The same applies to Lantash. His tie to you is the stronger; therefore, his tie to me is causing him to feel the pain as they pull him in different directions. It is why I am bleeding, Sam. For a Furling, this tug of war between the ties is literally causing tears in my heart, in my very being. Once we sever the ties of the blood, then the seeking of its mate and home will cease. The passion is still there, but it no longer pulls one to the other and ignoring it is very easy. That, of course, is because the stronger of the ties now takes its rightful place, and pushes that lesser passion out of the way, until it is as if it no longer exists. Does that explain well enough, Sam? If not, I will be more than happy to explain in more detail,” Kat assured her.
Sam frowned as she thought it through, and then she asked, “But doesn’t that mean that you will still want to, well, to make love to Lantash? If it is still there, then…”
Kataya nodded her head, as she replied, “Yes, of course, there will be the occasional longing to join with him.” She paused, before adding, “Just as there is the occasional longing that you feel to join with Daniel, and that, no doubt, Daniel feels toward you. Even though you have a platonic bond this living, does not mean that you do not wish to have more. You discussed becoming lovers, Sam. You would not have considered it, was there not passion between you. It is nothing to be ashamed or concerned about; it is simply a fact of life,” Kataya assured her, as she watched Sam’s face heat to a fairly intense red.
Sam cleared her throat before telling her in a voice that was slightly more than a whisper, “I—I, I don’t know what to say, Kat. I guess I have been denying it to myself.” Drawing a deep breath, she affirmed, “You are right. It is there, but covered by the passion I feel for Martouf and Lantash. It is not something I would ever act on, even if—when I do feel it. I understand what you are saying. Thank you, Kat,” she added quietly.
Kataya bowed her head in acceptance of Sam’s words, and added, “There is one more thing about severing the blood tie, Sam. While it will leave the passion in place, even when it flares to life, it will be muted and most of the time, it will be channeled into the type of deep loving friendship that you usually feel for Daniel. And that, Carusawyn, is a wondrous thing to have between you. It will always be with you, into eternity.”
Sam nodded again and then gave her a somewhat shaky smile. “You are correct. That is what I feel most of the time, and it is a wonderful feeling. Thank you again. It seems as if you are always leading me away from an emotional precipice, when I am about to leap into the chasm.” Deciding a change of topic might be best, she walked toward the table where the plans lay. “Wow, this place is huge.” She frowned, as she looked at it. “What is this symbol?” She asked, as she pointed to what looked like a crown and sword.
“Why?” Surprised, Sam looked up from the area she was studying.
Kataya hesitated for a slight moment before reminding her, “It is part of the prophecy. The blood of the Dragons must be shed on soil.”
“Of course,” Sam murmured, as she returned to perusing the layout in front of her, “I had forgotten.” Then her head jerked up, and she looked intently at Kataya. “You said the blood of the Dragons. Plural.”
Kataya looked back at her, and there was a wealth of meaning in her tone, as she replied with one word, “Yes.”
As the two women stared at one another, Kataya said, “Do you wish to change your mind, Samantha?”
Sam frowned and answered slowly as she gave the situation some serious thought, “No, but I don’t think we should tell anyone. I am actually surprised that Daniel has not realized it yet.”
“Merdwin already knows, Sam.”
Sam shook her head, and waved her hand as if brushing something aside as she answered her, “I meant any of the SGC or the Tok’Ra. There is no reason to worry them when it is not necessary.”
After a slight pause, Kataya seemed to come to a decision. “I believe I agree with you. It would cause them unnecessary anxiety. We do not know the outcome with any certainty. Both Merdwin and Artereos believe the outcome can be one of many, but in each, she will be dead. Remember, we will be extremely powerful once we join, Samantha. We must assume the best, not the worst. At the very least, we must shed her blood upon the soil. It would be foolish in the extreme, to think that we could battle such a powerful being, and remain unscathed. I think we should fully expect that.”
Leaning forward, she continued, earnestly, “Sam, every precaution to safeguard us will be taken, I assure you. Although Merdwin cannot take part in the battle, he will be as close as he can be without her detecting him. His powers are immense, I assure you; do not allow his dilettante air to fool you into believing otherwise.”
Sam nodded grimly. “I believe you and I agree. Besides, worrying about the battle is pointless. We need to be well prepared, and the rest will take care of itself.”
Sam paused, and it was obvious that something was preying on her mind. It had been bothering her since she linked with Kataya, and this was the first chance she had to question her. Kataya waited patiently, sensing that whatever the problem was, Sam would soon bring it out and into the open. She was correct.
“There is a different matter that I would like to discuss with you, though, if you would not mind?” She finally asked, somewhat hesitantly.
“What is troubling you, Carusawyn?”
Kataya lifted an eyebrow in an inquiring gesture. “What is it you wish to know of Artereos?”
“Well, if I am the off-spring of his wife and her lover, how will he feel about me? I understood from our link that he knew it had to be this way, and he didn’t blame her, but, well, that doesn’t mean he will want to be reminded of what happened by being around her child.” Sam flushed slightly. “I didn’t mean that in a derogatory way, Kat. The lover part I mean, for some reason it just came out that way.”
“Llancellon is a wonderful man, Sam. Furthermore, he was her lover, just as Lantash was mine, and that is what my people called him, as did I. He was also my mate, just as Llancellon was my mother’s mate. To us, the term is descriptive and not in a derogatory way.”
She paused in thought, before continuing, “Artereos looks forward to meeting you, Samantha. As you say, he understood what took place, and Llancellon was and still is a great friend of his. They spend time together, often, just as they always have. You will like Artereos, and I believe you will understand better, what a truly great heart he has, as you come to know him. Although he can be an implacable enemy, he is a truly forgiving, understanding, loving man.” Then, she added softly, “Besides all of that; even if none of that existed or was true, the most important thing is still there and always will be: you are the daughter of Artereos, as I am.”
Sam stared at Kataya in surprise. “I can’t be his daughter. I am your half-sister; he is not my father,” she gasped.
Kataya smiled, slightly, “It is complicated, is it not? Actually, you are both my half-sister and my spirit twin. You contain threads of my soul and therefore his, and in that way; you are the daughter of Artereos. He will greet you gladly and lovingly, Samantha, for you are the daughter of his soul.”
“I see. I am glad to know that. I was worried that he might resent me. I am relieved that is not how it will be.”
“It will not be,” Kat assured her, and then it was her turn to change the subject.
“Tell me, Caruswyn, what do you think of Jocasta and Daur’rin? I have the impression that your father may be asking you for your feelings about her before long.”
Sam grinned and her blue eyes sparkled. “Yeah, and I am going to make him sweat a little before I give my approval. He did it often enough to me. It will be good for him.” She chuckled for a moment, thinking of her dad squirming, as she asked some pointed questions about what he was up to with this woman.
Kataya laughed with her before suggesting, “You should be sure to ask about his intentions and the fact that he is sleeping with her before they are bonded. It will shake him up and make him think. You can point out that at least you and Martouf bonded by the private Furling joining ceremony. For you did, you know. I am quite sure Lantash insisted on it before consummating your relationship, did he not?”
Sam flushed and then laughed, before sobering, to say, “He did. I didn’t realize at the time exactly what he meant but now, of course, I do. It was a beautiful moment,” she added quietly.
She gazed at Kat even more seriously for a moment, and stated, “As for my dad, I should thank you for my attitude, actually. I know that if I had not been through all of this, I would not have realized that I was being selfish if I resented her, and now, there is not a chance in hell that I would resist my dad finding a new mate. He deserves to be happy. I know he loved my mom, and he has been alone for a long time. I will be happy for him if it works out. I like what I saw of her.” A thought struck her.
“Do you know her?”
“As a matter of fact, I do. She is a very nice person. They both are. Daur’rin is gentle, shy, and very quiet for a Tok’Ra, and I liked her very much. I think you will, too.”
“I think I will seek her out tomorrow and get to know her,” Sam decided.
“I believe that is an excellent idea, Samantha.” Kataya looked at her and smiled a sweet smile, one that said she was remembering something.
“What?” Sam asked. “You are looking at me oddly.”
“I was remembering you during your first living. You were a loving, giving child then also, Samantha. You were a beautiful child, who grew into a beautiful woman. I have missed you, and I am glad to finally have you back.”
Sam grinned back, and said, “I am glad to be here, too. So are you saying I wasn’t the least bit annoying as a little sister?”
Kataya laughed, as she said, “I did not say you were not annoying, Samantha, only that you were beautiful, giving, and loving. Those things do not preclude annoying. You were always around when I wished to be alone with Dayillon.” She paused and then sighed theatrically, as she said, “Some things never change.”
Sam gasped, and then said as she, too, laughed, “In that case, I think that if you don’t mind, I will go check on Daniel and then take Martouf and Lantash home.”
“By all means, do so. If Daniel can be pried away from the inscriptions, send him back to me, please.”
“Will do, and if he balks, I will tell him you are really feeling tired.”
“Which is not exactly a lie. I do wish to go to bed,” Kataya responded saucily.
Sam was still laughing as she left the room. They had the evening to spend with their mates. She did a little half skip and bounce, as she headed down the hall. It was going to be another great night in Colorado Springs.
Daniel watched her as she walked slowly around the living room of their home. Every step or so she stopped, smiled softly, and gently touched some artifact, book, or piece of furniture. She ran her hand along the back of the couch and read the titles on the spines of his books. When she came to the group of his journals, she took the one from the first trip to Abydos and opened it to a random page. As she read, she chuckled softly for a moment, and then closed the book and replaced it before she continued her slow perusal of her new home. She closed her eyes and breathed in the scent of the room, a slight smile upon her lips. Finally, she turned her attention to him. “I should not have read your journal without first asking your permission to do so. May I read your journals, Beloved, or are they too personal?”
“You can read anything of mine that you want to, Kataya. Sometimes, I think you know more about me than I know about myself.”
She nodded slightly, and then said, “You could very well be correct in that statement, for I know you very well indeed, Coeurawyn.” Her eyes seemed to glow with happiness as they swept the room once again. “I am so pleased to be here.”
“I am glad. I have wanted to see you here since the day you walked through the gate.”
“Surely not, Daniel. I had the distinct impression you would rather I had simply gone away. I think that you were glad to see me only on a very deep level.”
Daniel nodded, as honesty forced him to admit, “I believe you are right, Kataya. I was very confused at the time. I am glad I realized who you are, and I only wish I had done so more quickly.” He stood relaxed, and absorbed her obvious enjoyment of her new home.
They arrived home a couple of hours ago, and while they were waiting for the delivery of their meal, they showered and changed. The food arrived, they ate, and now Kataya was finally getting the chance to look around the house.
It was obvious that it delighted her. Daniel bought the house several months ago for some reason he had never understood. Until now. While his home was not a castle by any stretch of the imagination, it was two stories. It had a vaulted ceiling in the living and dining room area and a turret room, which he had made into a circular library, at the corner of the living room. It shared the open floor plan, so it was a loft like structure, open to the living room, yet with a second floor. It had a wrought iron staircase, which was both practical and decorative, that wound up to the second story, near the joining of the living room and library on one side of the room.
The elongated windows added to the medieval look of the room, and they contained window seats that added to its charm. A fireplace, which stretched into both the living room and the library, across from the staircase, had been part of the enchantment he felt when he purchased the house. It was obvious that Kataya also felt drawn to the area, as she kept going back to it.
Seeing her standing there in one of the gowns she favored, the deep vee of the sleeves sweeping the floor, the circlet glowing softly, and the unicorn pendant falling to lie just above the swell of her breasts, he caught his breath. He wished suddenly that he could paint, for in the glorious violet gown, with her eyes glowing to rival the glow of the stones in the circlet, she would have made a breathtaking portrait. “I wish I had a portrait of you standing there in that gown, Kataya. You look so very beautiful.” He stopped speaking suddenly, and then said, “Don’t move, all right?”
Smiling indulgently, she said, “As you wish.”
He was back shortly with his digital camera, and he began to take pictures of her. “It is not the same as a portrait, but it is the next best thing. Go ahead and finish looking around,” he encouraged her, as he continued to catch her image, while she explored more of the room. He stopped, after she had chosen the journal of his first experience of the Stargate and Abydos, and seated herself in a large overstuffed armchair with a high back. He seated himself in its mate. It was a cozy scene; the man and woman seated in chairs in front of the fireplace, a small antique table, and lamp between them. He watched her as she stroked the journal she held in her hands, but did not open it.
Finally, she turned to him. “She was a wonderful Heartmate for you, was she not? She loved you greatly. You were her Dan’yel, and you opened a completely new world for her. She felt as if she was special in your eyes and, of course, she was. You thought she was truly wonderful to love you so completely. You have never understood how very lovable you are, Daniel.”
Daniel’s eyes had widened as Kataya had continued to speak of Sha’uri. “How did you know that? How could you know those things?” He asked, stunned.
“Sha’uri visited me in a dream, not long after I started watching SG-1. I knew you were the Soulmate, Daniel, as soon as I touched your mind for the first time.”
“At the Temple of the Dragon of the Fire. You were there, weren’t you? We felt you, but didn’t know what it was, of course. The cats were there as the guardians of the temple, but you sent them to Sam and I. Furthermore, you were giving me the words from the wall.”
“While it is true that was our first contact, I did not give you the words, Daniel. You did remember them yourself. No doubt, today, you could read more of it than you could then. I sent the cats knowing you would recognize them from our time there, even if you did not realize it on a conscious level. You would know you were safe, and that they were protecting you,” she replied. “I had to observe the team. I wished to start to get to know you in a relaxed atmosphere. I left the tablet to lure you there and proceeded to set the, ah,” she cleared her throat, “links to you and the others.”
“You linked to us? Isn’t that against your laws? That is what you told us.”
“No. Reading your minds, would be against the law, in a normal situation, but what was asked of us by Thor, put you into a separate category called, ah, risk assessment and determination. I had to have some way of knowing, for sure, where you were going. I am afraid Artereos determined your plan to go to the planet where you found the tablet. That was the most invasive thing we did, but we had to find out where you were going, so we could find you. I am sorry we had to do so, Daniel. However, in a war, some of the things that must be done are unpleasant and somewhat underhanded.”
“I assure you, Amat Wyn, once the link was set all I had to do was sense it to find you. Other than the original time, when we needed to know where you were going, there was no invasion of anyone’s thoughts. I always arrived and left by ship, so as not to alarm you by activating the gate.” She smiled briefly. “I never truly probed any of your minds. I only let you know when I had done something that needed a response from you to conclude a situation. And once, I helped Samantha find you.”
“I see. I cannot believe none of us wondered how you even found us to watch and report on us to Artereos. I mean, we should have realized something was weird about that. I did realize about the Temple when Merdwin told us of the Prophecy.” He shook his head and smiled, wryly, “I am not upset, Kataya, just amazed that none of us even considered that question. It makes me feel very stupid.” His eyes narrowed, “What did you and Merdwin do, my love? You calmed any questions in some way, didn’t you?”
“Well, Merdwin, might, perhaps, possibly, have defused any questions anyone at the SGC might have had.” She said quietly, peeking at him through her lashes as she pleated her skirt. She really hated doing things in an underhanded way, but there was no point in getting everyone upset over such a little thing. She hoped.
Daniel smiled at her, again shaking his head, “I am very glad that you are on our side, Kataya. It was a temporary thing, and by the time it wore off, no one thought about it anymore, but if they thought about it now, they would start asking questions, wouldn’t they?”
“Well, yes, and it would be so very awkward, Daniel.”
“All right, I will agree not to ask you, or Merdwin, anymore awkward questions, Kataya, at least concerning that, but, I would like to know what you mean about dreaming of Sha’ uri. What,” he cleared his throat, “what did Sha’uri say in your dream?”
Relieved to be back on the subject she had originally wished to broach to him, she replied, “She told me of your time together, how much she loved you, and how you had cherished her for the short time that the two of you were together. She spoke of how much love you had always given to her, as well as how you had protected her and honored her. She told me how she was honored amongst her people because of the way you treated her, and she told me of the goodness in you, and the beauty she had found in your soul.”
“She told me of how glad she was that we would finally be together again, for she thought that, although you were not aware of it, you searched for me still. She was joyful that you would again be with your Soulmate, and she wished you to know that she never blamed you for what happened to her. She was so very proud of you and your abilities; as well as what you knew about the Chaappa’ai.”
“She also wanted you to know something else. It will be hard for you to believe, or understand, but I believe you deserve to know it, for it might mitigate some of the guilt you feel about what you believe her life was like with Apophis."
Daniel straightened and sat stiffly looking at Kataya. “What?”
“He loved her, Daniel. Not only the symbiote inside of her, but her, Sha’uri. While it was unpleasant for her, Amaunet did not torture her. While she did not ask what her wishes were, neither was she deliberately cruel to her. She wanted you to know that the worst part was being separated from you and knowing that they wished to destroy the Tau’ri. She was lucky in that he cared for her beauty, at first, and then for her. Amaunet had to sleep during the pregnancy, and he came to love Sha’uri more deeply during that time, before he had to hide her away, so she was not in as bad a position as you imagined, and for that you must be grateful.”
“I never thought I would be happy about anything to do with the Goa’uld, but you are right, and I should be glad that they didn’t hurt her as much as I feared. Thank you for telling me, Kataya. Why didn’t she tell me herself?”
“When she visited you? Because her time with you was limited. Her time with me was not. My training as a priestess of the All, allowed me to remain in the needed state longer than a simple dream allows. Sha’uri is well, Daniel. You must not worry about her. She is quite happy and content now.”
“I am glad to know that. Did she tell you I dreamed about her?” He asked quietly.
“She told me she visited you, yes.”
“Are you saying it wasn’t a dream?” He asked her, his voice hushed.
“It was a dream, but she was there. She wished to tell you to let her go, so that you could go forward with your life. She wanted you to know it was all right for you to do so.”
He nodded and then said, “She told me that you were the mate, the woman. She was right.” He smiled at her and rested his head on the back of his chair, as they sat in a companionable silence. He was glad she had told him about Sha’uri. It was a comfort, to know her life had not been a living hell the entire time she was with Apophis as his queen.
He watched Kataya as she became engrossed in the journal she had picked out. Her profile, the curve of her cheek, and the lashes that swept down and back up over her exotic violet eyes, mesmerized him, and his eyes slowly drifted shut. He was unaware of the sound of the journal closing, and he did not feel the light cover that she placed over him. He was unaware that she had taken his camera and the large amethyst that she used for communication over to the table and was using it to contact her father.
“I give you greetings, Daughter. You received the plans to Morgasha’s stronghold?” her father asked, as the link joined their minds.
“Yes, Father. Thank you, they are very detailed. The information the agent sent about her daily routine will be helpful, also. We will be able to plan our attack at her most vulnerable time,” Kataya responded, obviously pleased at the thought.
“Good.” He paused, and then said to her. “How are you, my Daughter?” She could feel the anxiety he was trying to hide from her.
“I spoke with Lantash. He will do the Sevesh Lok Twin in a few days,” She tried to assure him.
His frown was thunderous. “A few days will be too long.”
“I will wait. I manifested today, and that helped,” She tried once again to reassure him.
“I have spoken to Merdwin. You then had a practice session, two of them,” he said disapprovingly.
Kataya sighed in exasperation. “Yes, we did, and I am fine.”
“You forget that I can feel your heart, Kataya. You are not fine. The time grows short. Tomorrow, the next day at the latest, you must do the Sevesh Lok Twin.” Artereos’s voice was firm, and she knew he was very aware of how badly affected she was.
“I am aware. I will not force him before he is completely reconciled and agreeable. You are as aware as I am that to do so would damage him seriously physically. I will do everything within my power to see to it that he bears none of the pain for this. I will not be the instrument that harms him,” she told him, her resolve showing in her tone of voice.
Her father sighed, as he contemplated the problem. “Yes, I am aware, and I do understand your feelings.” Changing the subject, he asked, “How is Dayillon?”
“He is exhausted with worry. He does not get enough rest. I think he is staying awake at night. I believe he is afraid that I will,” she paused in her thought, before continuing, “leave him while he sleeps. He fears that I will not take the necessary steps to insure that I survive. I am sure he does not realize that he is feeling thus, but I believe that is why I awaken to see him watching me.”
“Dayillon always worried about you, Kataya, and we were all aware of it, though he sought to hide it,” her father reminded her.
“I know. And I also know I cannot stop him from doing so,” she replied, softly.
She turned their conversation in another direction. “I have contacted you with a request.”
He laughed gently; “Somehow, I suspected you had not contacted me for the second time in one day, simply to hear my voice, my dear. What is it that you wish for that I may be able to accomplish for you?” He asked indulgently.
Smiling at him, she said, “I am going to send you some images. Please pick one of them and have a portrait made. One that will fit above a fireplace, or on a bedroom wall. I will send images of the areas in which he might hang one, as well as the images themselves. Daniel has made known to me that he wishes for one, and he took images from which you can choose. Try to choose the one which you feel he would most cherish, please, my Father,” So saying, she began to look at the images and send them to her father.
“Go back to the third or fourth image, Kataya. Yes, I believe this one for Dayillon, and I will choose one of the others for myself.”
Kataya looked more closely at the image her father had chosen. One of the first he had taken, after telling her not to move, she was standing near the window seat, with one of Daniel’s journals in her hand. The rays of the evening sun filtered through the long window casting a golden halo behind and above her, enhancing the gold of her skin. Her eyes were deeply violet, as was the dress she wore; the jewels glowed softly in her circlet. The unicorn pendant and the amethyst and diamond ring were clearly visible. Most importantly though, love shone from her eyes and seemed to transform her face. It should have been captioned, A Medieval Lady gazing at her Lover. “Yes,” she whispered, to her father. “I, too, believe that is the one.”
Abruptly, she changed the tone and direction of their discussion. “I expect to see you in a few days. I am looking forward to it. I am also looking forward to seeing my youngest kits. They and Gwennetha will arrive soon, will they not?”
“Yes, although I do not know if it will be tomorrow; it will be quite soon. I have chosen a few more Katteri to inform, but I am waiting on you and Merdwin before I make my final choices. Do you have anyone you wish for me to consider ahead of our meeting?”
“Yes, besides Gwennetha, I wish for Seraphynara and Rosawyn, Caliswyna, Desrynara, and Garwynthia. All are the highest rank of priestess and are capable of extended periods of sustaining and infusion. I know Gwennetha has not held the ability long, but she is of the highest rank now. I have talked to her, but I wish you to do so also, Father, for their mission is somewhat different from the others. You will need to assure Gwennetha that she is capable of the added responsibility. She is quite confident of her abilities as a Warrior, it is only this added assignment…” Her voice trailed off.
“They are excellent choices, my daughter, and I will speak to Gwennetha. They sustained you before…”
She interrupted his thought. “Yes, and they have grown even more powerful since then. I know Merdwin will be near, if needed.”
“Yes. He will be as close as we can safely put him, I promise you.”
She became aware of Daniel stirring in his chair. “I must go now. Daniel fell asleep, but he is beginning to awaken.”
“I will talk to you later, my daughter. Do not do as Dayillon fears and wait to long to go to Avilion.”
“I have Merdwin, but I will also be careful.” She smiled at him, as she sent to him waves of love, and she felt his response as the link shut down.
She replaced the camera and the amethyst, then made her way back to her chair and settled herself, so that she could watch her Daniel, as he slowly awoke. As his lashes swept upwards to reveal his wonderful blue eyes, she smiled at him.
“You did not sleep long, but perhaps you slept well, Beloved?”
Scrunching up his eyes and forehead in the dim light of the lamp, as he looked blearily around the room, he said, “Um, yeah. I guess I did.”
“Shall we make our way to the bedroom now, so that you can get some more rest?”
“No, um, no, that is alright, I am, uh, not sleepy now.” He frowned slightly. “I am in a chair in our house. I remember now.” He looked over at her and smiled. “I am sorry. When I first woke up, I expected to be on base still. I am very glad I am not. I think I will get some coffee. Want some?” He asked, as he wandered off toward the kitchen. Once there, he leaned around to door to ask. “Do you want anything at all?”
“Yes, actually, I would like some port, please.” She smiled, when he returned after a few minutes carrying a tray, with both coffee and port on it. Pouring some coffee into a cup, he added a measure of port and offered it to her. “It is actually very good, really,” he said, as he smiled engagingly at her.
“All right, I will try it.” Sitting with the cup in her hands, she stared into its contents. It was good, but that was not the reason she was staring into it. Finally, she sighed, and set the cup aside.
“Daniel, there is something I must tell you,” she sighed again, knowing that what she was about to say could possibly hurt him.
“Something about the talk you had with Lantash?” As usual, Daniel’s mind made the intuitive leap from one thing to the other.
“You made love with him.”
Kataya gasped, “No, I did not.”
“Good. So, what did happen?” Now that he knew the worst had not happened, he could hear the rest with, he hoped, equanimity.
“Well, first promise me you will do nothing.” It had suddenly occurred to her that confessing this might send Daniel out to call Lantash to answer for his actions. The human Tau’ri male…her thought trailed off, as she realized that Daniel had answered her and was waiting for her to speak.
“I said, I can’t promise you I will do nothing, but I will promise not to try to kill him, something I couldn’t do without a weapon, anyway,” Daniel repeated, again reading her mind in his usual way.
“Well, I do not think it would be worth killing either of us over, but if you must, then kill me, for I am as much to blame as he,” she suggested ruefully.
“Kataya, just tell me,” Daniel urged gently.
“Lantash kissed me, and I kissed him back,” her words came out in a rush.
Daniel looked surprised. “That is it?”
“Well, um, yes. More or less,” she hedged a little.
“Is it more, or less?” Daniel asked, at her somewhat evasive reply.
“More,” she said, as she glanced at him from the corner of her eyes.
“How much more?” He wanted to know.
She looked him in the eyes, as she said softly, “It was an extremely passionate kiss. Well, two kisses, actually. I fell completely under their spell for a short while. When I realized what was happening, I finally began to protest, but if he had not listened to his host, and me, I would have given in and gone to him, Daniel. I am sorry.”
“By that, I assume you protested. Evidently, somewhat vehemently.”
“Not at first, but very soon, yes. If he had not stopped, I do not know how long I could have held out against the tie between us, Daniel,” she said, quietly.
Daniel got up from his chair and came to kneel beside her. “But, you did resist, and you did attempt to stop him. Moreover, he stopped. Nothing really happened. That is what is important, not the what if’s,” he assured her.
Reaching out to touch his face, she said softly, “You are such a gentle, understanding man, my mate. I love you, so.” With Daniel looking up at her from the floor so earnestly, she added, “This does prove how deep is his love for Samantha.”
“How so?” Daniel frowned, not making the connection this time.
“As you pointed out, the ties between Lantash and I are very strong. The fact that he listened to Martouf and I, shows that he loves her deeply. He could have overcome both of our protests, had he truly wished too. Do not forget that Martouf shares his feelings; he too, would have succumbed to the feelings engendered by the Sevesh’en Twine Coeuramator, the Entwining of the Heartmates,” she reminded him, as she looked at him steadily.
Daniel sighed, “I will just be glad when you have finally managed to get the rite performed, but in the meantime, you should rest, and don’t worry about my reaction. I am not upset with you, and I will not go looking for him to ‘call him to account for his actions’.” He grinned up at her as he said that, but then sobered as he added, “I have to admit that I really don’t understand why you don’t insist he go through it now. He has agreed to do it, why not just get it over with?” Daniel asked, obviously frustrated.
Placing her hands on either side of his face, she said, “Daniel, Beloved, I will not force Lantash to go through the Sevesh Lok Twin. I will not take the chance of injuring him. He does not deserve that, and Martouf certainly does not. To go through the Sevesh Lok Twin is difficult enough if both agree. To do so when only one wishes it is dangerous in the extreme and can cause serious injury or death.” Her voice was soft, but it contained an underlying element of steel.
Rising from the floor where he knelt beside her, Daniel stood and walked to the nearby desk. Leaning back against it, he rubbed his face briskly and then pinched the bridge of his nose in a familiar gesture. Using his hands for emphasis, as he always did when seriously agitated, he said, “Kataya, are you telling me that Lantash, and therefore Martouf, could die if they are not completely reconciled to going through with the Sevesh Lok Twin? That is why you have been so adamant that you will wait for them to agree? Crap! I didn’t realize or understand that. All right. Okay. So, I understand now why you can’t tell them, or do it without their full agreement, but what happens if they don’t ever agree? What then? Do you just go as far away as possible and hope it goes away?
“Yes, that is correct, Amat Wyn, that is what I am saying. They could die or be badly injured. If they do not agree, then I will have to leave and hope that with time spent at Avilion it will eventually heal. However, that is not going to happen, Daniel. He has agreed, and it is only a matter of time until he sees his way clear to do the Sevesh Lok Twin. He knows that it must be done and soon.”
“Does Sam know? Is she aware of what could happen?”
“I believe she does, Daniel. She would have that knowledge from our link. That is an assumption on my part, actually, since I do not know for sure what she accessed and what she did not. But, things that are important to me are what she would have seen.”
“And you, Kataya? How difficult is this going to be on you? You are weakening every hour, aren’t you? It is why you manifested today. You really should not have used your sword today,” he said. Then he asked, “How long? How long before it causes your death? Because if you stay near the two of us, it will do that, won’t it?”
Standing, she walked to him and placed her hands on his shoulders, “Daniel, I wish I could tell you. I do not know. I was telling you the truth when I told you that Merdwin and I will work on it.” She quietly admitted, “Artereos says I have a day, two at the most, before it becomes critical that I do something. You are in excellent company, my love, he also, is extremely upset with my actions today, although he, also, knows that it was necessary.”
Sighing, she returned to her chair and seated herself. “I believe that Lantash will agree soon, Daniel. So does Samantha. As for how hard it will be on me, it will depend on many things that are irrelevant at the moment. I will be able to tell you more the closer we come to actually doing it. The practice session today was also important in that we needed a base line of Samantha’s abilities, now, just after the link. It was also important that she see Merdwin and I, now, before we take things farther. I did not do these things on a whim. Please, Daniel…” her voice trailed off, and she allowed her head to fall back against the chair back.
She felt him come to kneel beside her again and gently caress her cheek, “I am sorry, Kataya. I am not being very supportive, am I? Please, forgive me.”
Smiling softly, she said, “Forgive you for what, Coeurawyn? For loving me? For worrying yourself into exhaustion? There is nothing for which you need forgiven. Tell me, are you sleepy yet, or do you think we could relax and talk, perhaps, in our bedroom?”
Rising from the floor where he knelt beside her, he said. “I think that would be a very interesting place to sit and, ah, talk,” he agreed.
He held out his hand to her, and she slowly placed hers into it. As he clasped her fingers, she felt the desire he always invoked cause her body to tremble. As she felt the answering tremor in him, she heard him gasp softly. She looked up into his face. As his hand urged her to stand, she brought their bodies close together and heard him breathe, “Dear god, the desire I have for you is ever present. It smolders between us, and only a spark sets it ablaze.”
As he lowered his mouth to hers, he heard her answer him, “Yes.”
The kiss was long and sweet. As they explored each other’s lips, Daniel heard Kataya whisper, “My sweet and wonderful, Dayillon. How I have missed you.”
“I am here now, my love, and I am so sorry I was so foolish.” Daniel drew in his breath sharply and straightened. Suddenly, images were flashing through his mind. His eyes opened wide, and he stared at her.
“What is it, Daniel? What have you remembered?”
Daniel was reliving a particularly unpleasant memory. Speaking softly, he said, “The kits. You lost the kits, and it was my fault.”
Kataya shook her head, “No, Daniel, it was not your fault. It was the fault of Col’tek, who was behind the attack.”
“Oh, no, no, no. I was the one, me. I was not paying attention and they ambushed us. If I hadn’t been looking at the pictographs on the rocks, we would have been better prepared, more alert.”
“Daniel, that is not true. We had no reason to believe that we were in any danger.”
Turning from her, he laughed harshly. “We barely made it out alive, and you lost our babies because of the injuries you suffered; the injuries you suffered protecting me,” he said, his self-disgust apparent.
“Daniel, stop this. It was not your fault. I am a Warrior, a trained Katteri-enti, and if either should take the blame, it is I, but the truth is that neither of us could have known. You could say that because I am a trained Katteri-enti, I should have sensed it, known it, but I did not. If I refuse to take or place blame, other than on Col’tek, then so should you.” Kataya sighed, as she rubbed her chest. “Daniel, I told you then, and I tell you now, that it was meant to be. Look at yourself. Do you not see what you have become?”
“I know what I am, all right. I am a damned academic, just as I was then. I could not protect you then, and I cannot protect you now.”
“You are a truly brilliant man, and yes, you are an academic, but, Daniel, look at yourself. You are also a soldier. Have you never wondered why in the universe you agreed to come to work for the military? Has it never occurred to you that there was a deeper meaning than just a thirst for knowledge? You have always known that someday, you would need these skills that you have learned.”
Challenging him, she said, “Do not try to tell me that you are not a Warrior, Daniel Jackson, for it would be a blatant lie. Do you really believe that Jack O’Neill would continue to put his team in jeopardy, if you were truly as useless as you wish to insist that you are? Well, do you? An honest answer, Daniel.”
Suddenly, the tension drained out of him. “No, he would not. Nevertheless, that is now, Kataya, and we are not really discussing now. I still feel responsible for the loss of our children. We waited so long.”
“Yes, we did. Daniel, we can have other children. We were not restricted from having others then, nor are we now. Once this battle is over, there will be no reason I cannot take the few short months it takes to have kits.”
“Why did you go with me that day, Kataya? Why did you not make me listen to you about waiting for a better time to go after them?”
She shook her head. “I do not know for sure.” She hedged.
As he frowned at her, a light seemed to come on for him. “Yes, you do. Tell me, please.” Daniel spoke again, “I will be your echo, Kataya. The truth, please.”
She sighed. “There were three reasons. First, I do not believe you would have listened to me; I do not think I could have made you. Second, I wanted revenge, too, just as you did. Third, I was depressed, and I was frightened that you would die and not come back, if I did not follow you.” She paused, and then continued, “As it turned out,” she said softly, “I was correct, and it happened anyway.”
She turned away from him, as she fought for control of her voice. “You left me alone, to live with the death of not only my kits, but of the light that was the warmth and comfort of my soul. My reason for being was gone, and for the first time in all of my livings, I could not bear the grief. I was so lost without you, my Beloved, that I could not survive. I, too, left the world we had known and was reborn.”
“I thought, and hoped, that you would be there waiting for me, but you were not. Moreover, I have searched for you ever since. For over five hundred years have I searched for you, my love, and now that I have found you, I wish for my heart to be glad and rejoice with you, not be torn apart again, by reliving that which I cannot change.”
Daniel closed his eyes in anguish and regret. Now that he remembered, he knew he would always feel responsible for the loss of their kits, but he realized that she was correct, too. Their time together should be joyful, not full of sorrow and regret. He was too aware of how brief their livings together sometimes were. He also knew that never before had he been gone so long from her. Over five hundred years. Never again, he swore to himself, would he put her through that. Nor would he continue now, to make her relive that very painful part of their past.
“I am sorry, Kataya. I can promise you that never again will I leave you like that. Instead of punishing myself; I punished you. I see that now, and I am truly sorry for putting you through that.” He dragged in a deep breath before continuing, “Never again, I swear. I will always feel the guilt of causing their deaths, but I won’t allow that to color our time together.”
Kataya shook her head before turning back to him, and saying softly, "Amat Wyn, if you had not done so, if you had not left me, then I would not have met and entwined with Lantash and Dominic. They were meant to be my formally bonded, entwined Heartmates, Daniel; I feel this very strongly. Without that event, if you had not left me, if I had not lost our kits, then nothing of the prophecy would be coming to pass now, and Morgasha would not be about to meet her end. She would have continued to kill and harm for, perhaps, centuries more, before circumstances could again fall into place so that we could find and assassinate her. There is no point in blaming yourself for something that was, in all probability, predestined. There are few truly predestined events, my love; however, I believe that this was one of those few. Father calls them imperatives because they must come to pass in some form at some time. I truly believe that the events we lived through were true imperatives, Daniel, and nothing we could have done would have changed that, not indefinitely."
She shrugged before adding. "I realize that if that particular window of opportunity had passed that there would have been another one, but something, some other event," she stressed, "would have occurred at some point in time, to separate us for an extended period. I believe that I was meant to meet and love Lantash and Dominic because that event was important in allowing the prophecy to take place. Please, Igisadonis. Please, stop blaming yourself for something over which I honestly believe you had no control."
“Remember my mother and my father, Coeurawyn. My mother has allowed a predestined event to part them, and soon she will realize that and come back to my father. We have given Morgasha five hundred of our years. Let us give her no more because of false guilt. I do not believe I could bear to live through it yet again.”
Daniel stood still, staring at her, as his nimble mind went over everything she had said. She was right. Completely, absolutely. Had they followed any other path, they might not be here today getting ready to remove a monster from the universe. He felt the relief flow through him. “Yes. Yes, I agree, my love. Dear Goddess, Kataya, it makes sense, but I still promise I will never leave you for that amount of time again. That, at least, was not necessary. Not the entire five hundred years.”
Kataya smiled slightly. “We do not know that, Carusawyn. It is occurring, when and as it is occurring, because it is meant to do so. Perhaps you could have returned to me in the interim. We will never know, and at this moment, I do not care. You are here, now, Beloved. That is what is important. For this space of time, it is the only thing that is important.”
Coming up behind her, as she gazed, unseeing, out the window, he placed his hands on her shoulders in a gesture very reminiscent of the first time he had asked her to become his mate. He smiled softly, as he remembered that day. He could almost smell the scent of the roses blooming overhead. It was her skin, of course, and it brought many lovely memories tumbling into his mind, pushing the other, darker ones, back into the recesses, where they belonged.
He realized that there was something he had not yet done this living. He had not yet declared himself to her in the way of the Soulmate. It was a moment in time she always loved to relive, and it was time he made his feelings official. The room was mellow and beautiful with the last few rays of the setting sun. They would add another lovely setting to the other memories they had of this moment. Furthermore, it would take both of their minds away from the pain of a past that could not be changed, and bring them into a present that could be making loving and beautiful memories, instead.
As he caressed her shoulders, he lowered his voice, and said huskily, “Kataya, my love, my blood burns in my veins with a fire and passion for you that I cannot deny. My heart and my soul are incomplete without you. You are the woman, the mate. It is my wish that you become mine for eternity. My most ardent desire is for our souls and hearts to entwine and join and for you to become my eternal mate. I have such love for thee, Blood of my Heart. Come to me, join me, and walk with me into eternity.”
He heard her catch her breath on a tiny sob, and then she turned to him and reached up to touch his face, as she said, “Daniel, my love; you are the Beloved of my Soul. You are the other half of my soul and my heart. You are the man, the mate. It is my wish that you become mine for eternity. I, too, ardently desire that we entwine our hearts and souls, and that I join you as your eternal mate. I, too, have such love for thee, Beloved of my Soul. I will come to you, join you, and walk with you into eternity.”
Daniel slowly lowered his lips to hers. The kiss was long, deep, and said many things. Many more, all speaking of things they had known and would know again, about each other followed it. When at last they ended them, Kataya looked at her Daniel’s face and smiled. He was lost to this world, befuddled, and bemused, adrift in a sensual haze.
The room had grown dark, for the sun had set some time ago now. The scene that they had started while the sun was still up, would end differently this time than it had the first time he had said those words to her so many millennia ago.
Taking his hand, she led him toward the bedroom. Once there, she stopped just inside the door, and he seemed to awaken. Looking at her, he smiled and reached out his hand to divest her of her gown. A lovely garment, but it was in the way. So were his own clothes, he realized. It was time to get rid of them, too.
They stood before one another, hiding nothing. Daniel walked to the bed and pulled the bedclothes down. The light of the newly risen moon shone into the room, turning everything to silver. He walked back to where she stood watching him, enjoying the sensuality of his nakedness.
As he had so often in the past, he leaned down and swept her up into his arms. It was several steps to the bed, but he carried her there anyway. Stopping beside it, he looked at it and laughed softly. He had bought it recently without really knowing why. At the time, he had thought it fit the house and the huge bedroom. Large and ornate the bed had two steps leading up to it. Once at the top, he laid her gently onto the satin sheets, yet another of his recent impulse buys. Lying down beside her, he looked at the velvet and brocade hangings draping the bed.
The team had laughed at it, but now Daniel knew exactly why he had bought it and the accoutrements that went with it. Lying in the middle of the sumptuousness was his perfect Medieval Lady, and she certainly belonged here. She belonged here in every way, he thought, as he lowered his lips to claim hers once more. Soon, he was lost in the silken softness of her skin, the scent that was Kataya, and the taste that he knew he would remember for the rest of his life. She was fire and ice, moonbeams and mists, fantasy and reality. She was the beginning and the end. And she was his. His lips found the softness of her throat and feathered kissed from there to the lushness of her breasts. He found them and suckled until she moaned in need.
Her hands explored his body, loving him and learning him as if she had never touched him before and must learn everything about him. Her nails left trails of fire on his back, over his buttocks to the tops of his thighs. He moaned her name, an entreaty, and a promise.
His fingers found the heat, the wetness of her center, and the nub that would bring her to release, as she found the stiffness of his shaft and began a sensual stroking of it. He shuddered as she came to her knees beside him and took his manhood in her mouth to give it the attention for which it begged. Spreading her legs so that he still had access to her, while she pleasured him, she allowed him to stoke the fire that already burned there, so that it raged higher.
He felt her juices bathe his fingers and he knew that he was not going to be able to wait for long to have her. The simple feel of those juices running onto his hand, was causing him to ache to be buried in that hot moistness. As he moaned her name, she heard the underlying urgency, the longing and yearning that was in that one word. By the Fire of the Stars, she loved this man. Loved him, wanted him, and could not bear to hear that entreaty in his voice and not respond to it.
She allowed him to leave her mouth and rolled away from his hand. Before he could discern her intention, she returned and straddled his body impaling herself on his stiffened shaft. Burying it in herself to the hilt, she allowed her muscles to massage him as she sat atop him and worked them, milking him internally. Moaning again, Daniel began to move his hips, unable to lie still.
She brought his hands to her breasts, but Daniel had other ideas. Bringing her toward him, he raised his head and suckled as his hands clasped her waist and began a rhythm that soon had him nearing the edge. “Kataya, I can’t, can’t stop,” he gasped, suddenly.
“Now, my love; I am ready, now,” she panted, as she joined him in the spiral of their climax. A blaze burned within a whirlwind of emotion. They clung to each other as they rode out the storm.
She collapsed onto his chest and rested there, breathing heavily. His arms came around her, cradling her, as his shaft soaked in their juices. Leaning sideways, he managed to nab a corner of the sheet, and he brought it up to cover them. She straightened her legs, but did not leave his chest, as he wrapped his arms around her indicating his wish that she remain. “I love you, Kataya, Et Aevum.”
“Amata Tu, Semper, Daniel,” she replied softly. Wrapped in each other’s arms, sated, they slept.
Outside the night cooled, a soft breeze rustled the trees, and the moon looked on turning the landscape to silver and shadows.