Chapter Eight Summary:  Martouf and Lantash announce that they are now bonded to Samantha
and she to them.  Jorlin/Kristen, Malek, and Lieutenant Donovan go off world to a bazaar and buy the
clothing they will need for the mission.
 

“Italics” –
Symbiote-Host Communication












Sam finished her breakfast and realized that Martouf had said very little, since they
entered the cafeteria, and that he wasn’t really eating his meal.  It was obvious that
something was on his mind, so it didn’t surprise her when he turned to her, and said,
“Samantha, I must ask you once more to be very sure.  Even though we declared last
night, neither Lantash nor I will hold you to what was said with the heat of passion
perhaps holding sway.  Do you still wish to be our bond-mate?  If so, then we must make
our declaration to the Tok’Ra that are here, as soon as they come in.”

Sam’s eyes widened.  “Martouf, I told you last night that I wanted to become bonded mates
with you and Lantash.  Passion aside, I meant what I said, and I want us to marry as
well.”  She frowned slightly picking up on his nervousness.  “This declaration thing.  What
is it?  I mean, what does it entail?  You seem kind of nervous for something that is no
more than informing people that we are bonded.”

“Yes, I suppose I am.  It is the formal declaration of intent, and it should be done at once,
so that all will know that I now consider you my mate.  It tells everyone that I will protect
you and stand by you as such.”  

He paused slightly before adding, “It is also one of the times that objections can be raised
to the pairing.  Lantash tells me that he has known that to happen only a few times and
only one of those was upheld at the time.  It was revoked later when the situation was
straightened out.  I do not believe that there will be any legitimate objections in this
instance, as I can not think of anything that could be claimed against you or I that would
prevent our bonding.”  

He smiled a bit wryly as he continued, stating, “It will also, I believe, relieve your father’s
mind.  He will be worrying that I have seduced you without taking you as my formal
mate.  This way, it will both reassure him that I did not simply use your body with no
intention of joining with you, and it will make our relationship a formal bond.  The actual
ceremony must wait until we are back in the tunnels.  I suppose Malek, as a base
commander, could officiate, but normally, it is a holder of the ceremonial bindings or a
high councilor that performs the ceremony.”  He frowned, obviously thinking.

“You requested that we become your husbands.  There is a ceremony is there not?”

Sam looked startled for a moment, before saying, “Let’s get through one thing at a time
and finish discussing this declaration that needs to be done.  Is this part of the entire
process?  You mentioned last night that we had to declare ourselves, to accept one
another, and we did that.  Then, you mentioned this announcement, and I thought that
you meant that we would just tell everyone that we had made a decision to become bond-
mates, and, you know, go through a ceremony.  I take it that it’s a little more than just
informing people we are going to be mates?”

“Yes, it is.  First, there is the personal declaration and the joining of the bodies, which we
did last night.  Then, there is the formal declaration, which tells our people we intend to
become bond-mates, a bonded, joined couple, by the bonding ceremony.  Then, there is
the actual ceremony that completes the bonding.”  

“Please do not misunderstand, Samantha, even though we would not force you to remain
so, if you did not wish it, we are joined, and it is binding on us, for we declared to one
another.  Those things that are left to be done are formalities that most choose to go
through.  And even though they are not absolutely necessary, in a way, they do serve a
purpose.  If there are objections, you know of them and what they are, although you can
choose to ignore them.  If there were objections and they were upheld, the Tok’Ra would
accept only that the couple considers themselves bonded, but it is not a sanctioned
union.  There are no penalties or anything like that, and, in fact some do not bother to do
this part.  Once we have declared ourselves, then our people will expect us to accept the
bonding words and declare them to one another.”

“Once I have managed to accumulate what I need to do so, I will acquire a necklace of gold
for you, which we will choose together.  You may give me one, also, if you wish.”

“Are there certain words that we use for this declaration?”  Sam asked, beginning to feel
nervous about the entire thing, now that she had a better idea of what it actually meant.  

Martouf shook his head.  “Not exactly.  At least not that you need to know.  I will declare to
the Tok’Ra, and you will simply tell them that you have become joined to us, and that you
agree to become our bonded mate when they ask you.  As the eldest, Selmak is the one to
which we will declare.  Lantash and I must both make our intentions known, however.”

Sam smiled at him slightly, before saying, “It almost sounds like our engagement, except
that for us, supposedly anyway, the engagement and the wedding come first.  Then the
sex.  The wedding is the formal joining ceremony.  That is when you will become my
husbands, and I will become your wife.  That is also the time when objections can be
made.”

“Yes, Samantha explained it to us, but did not wish to go through the ceremony at the
time, when we first joined and bonded.  I have always wondered why.  She said that it was
unnecessary, but I have often wondered if Lantash was correct, and she did not wish to
bond with us at that time.  Later, we talked of it again, and had, in fact, decided to go
through the Tau’ri ceremony, but she was killed before we could do so.”

Sam reached out and touched Martouf on the arm as he stared at his plate, lost in the
past.  “Martouf, look at me, please,” she told him softly.  Once he turned to look into her
eyes, she said gently, “I don’t believe for one minute that I didn’t love you in your old
reality.  It simply isn’t possible.  If I, - Sam, decided to go through the ceremony with you,
it was for you, not for her.  She probably knew you wondered and hoped it would put your
mind at rest.  After what Lantash said last night about always wondering if she was
pressured into bonding, I’m quite sure of it.”

“How can you be so sure, my Samantha?  How can you know?”

Sam smiled at him, “Because she is me and I am her.  Just as you are Martouf and he
was you.  The truth is that I don’t feel a need to marry you.  And from what you said, she
felt the same.  I wish to join with you by our ceremony for you, so that you will always
know in your hearts that I was sure that I wanted to bond with you.  I never want you to
wonder if I truly wanted to be your mate.  So, we will go through both ceremonies.”

Martouf smiled his sweetest smile, and Sam’s heart melted again, as it did each time that
he gave her that special smile.  “Thank you, Samantha.  I find your words very comforting,
and Lantash wishes me to add his thanks as well.  He also feels comforted by your words.”

Leaning over she kissed him softly, not caring who saw her.  “If it helped, I’m glad.  Now,
eat your breakfast.”

“Yes, dear,” Martouf said meekly, before grinning at her and returning to his food.

They looked up as Jacob and the other Tok’Ra entered the cafeteria.  After they filled their
trays, Martouf indicated through gestures that they should join them.  Sam realized that
Selmak had control.  No doubt, her dad was sputtering about his little girl being with
Martouf overnight.  She sighed.  She really would have to see if the General would do a
civil ceremony for them right away.  At least her dad would feel better.  She wondered how
the other Jacob had felt about that.

As the Tok’Ra seated themselves around the table and surrounded them, Martouf turned
so that he faced Selmak, but could address the entire group.  Raising his voice slightly,
since Selmak was seated two seats away, he said, “Selmak, I say to you that, I, Martouf of
the Tok’Ra, have declared and joined with Samantha of the Tau’ri.  Let it be known
throughout the ranks of the Tok’Ra, that she is now my mate in thought, heart, and deed.  
We will soon take one another as mates by the ceremony of bonding, as we have already
taken one another by the joining of our bodies and our hearts.”

Sam realized that it had become completely quiet in the cafeteria.  Not even silverware
was rattling.  The Tok’Ra sat quietly and waited, as did Martouf.  Selmak turned to
Samantha, and said, “Samantha of the Tau’ri, have you taken Martouf of the Tok’Ra by
the joining of your heart and body?”

“Yes, I have,” Sam said, blushing.

“Is it your intention to take part in the Tok’Ra bonding ceremony and join with Martouf of
the Tok’Ra by the bonding words?”

“Yes, it is.  I also plan to join with him in the Tau’ri marriage ceremony,” she added firmly.

“It is witnessed by all here present that you have agreed and that you and Martouf have
both declared your intentions.  The ranks of the Tok’Ra shall be so informed, and we now
accept you as mates one to the other.”

Sam watched as Martouf's eyes flared and Lantash came forward to speak, “Selmak, I say
to you that, I, Lantash of the Tok’Ra, have declared and joined with Samantha of the Tau’
ri.  Let it be known throughout the ranks of the Tok’Ra, that she is now my mate in
thought, heart, and deed.  We will soon take one another as mates by the ceremony of
bonding, as we have already taken one another by the joining of our bodies and our
hearts.”

Again, Selmak waited, and then turned to Samantha, and said, “Samantha of the Tau’ri,
have you taken Lantash of the Tok’Ra by the joining of your heart and body?”

“Yes, I have,” Sam said, and this time being more prepared, she didn’t even blush.

“Is it your intention to take part in the Tok’Ra bonding ceremony and join with Lantash of
the Tok’Ra by the bonding words?”

“Yes, it is.  I also plan to join with him in the Tau’ri marriage ceremony.”

“It is witnessed by all here present that you have agreed and that you and Lantash have
both declared your intentions.  The ranks of the Tok’Ra shall be so informed, and we now
accept you as mates one to the other.”

Lantash visibly relaxed and Selmak smiled at them, saying, “I told Jacob that you would
be a joined pair by morning.  It is always satisfactory to be proven correct.”

Jacob took over and smiled at his daughter, “I’m happy for you, Sam.  Have you talked to
George about the ceremony?”

Sam shook her head, and realizing that the entire commissary was still very quiet, she
said, loudly enough that everyone would know so that there would be no speculation, “Not
yet.  I’d like to do a simple civil ceremony as soon as possible.  I’ll talk to him as soon as I
can.”

Jacob nodded, saying, “I’ll go with you and Martouf after we eat.  I don’t see a problem
with it.”

“Thank you, Jacob.  We appreciate it,” Lantash grinned at him, knowing that Jacob
wanted the entire thing wrapped up so he would feel his daughter was
married.  The other
Jacob had never said anything, but when they had finally decided on the ceremony, he
had been patently relieved.  Therefore, he knew this was already making this Jacob feel
better about his
little girl.

SG-1 had come in shortly after the Tok’Ra and had been getting their food when Martouf
started his declaration.  They, too, had stopped what they were doing to listen.  

Janet had been right behind them.  Now that the more formal statements were obviously
at an end, she came over and hugged Sam.  “I’m really happy for you, Sam,” she
whispered.  “I think this is the best thing you could possibly do.  Congratulations.”

Daniel, Teal’c, and Jack followed her lead, and each offered congratulations and best
wishes to both Sam and Martouf and Lantash.  As others stood, came over to them, and
offered their congratulations and comments, Martouf began to look bemused and
confused.  As everyone finally managed to talk to them and things began to quiet down,
he turned to Sam, who smiled at him.

“Remember I mentioned that it sounded like our engagements?  Well, in many Tau’ri
cultures there is a period that we call the engagement or betrothal.  When an engagement
is announced, the couple’s friends and acquaintances congratulate them and wish them
well.  So, basically, in our culture, you just announced our engagement and everyone is
telling us that they are happy for us.  The engagement period is the time between the
decision to marry and the actual marriage.”

“And that is when the woman is presented with a ring, is she not?  A circle which is the
symbol of eternal devotion with no beginning and no end?  I do not now have a ring for
you, Samantha, but I will eventually be able to purchase one.  It will take time, I am
afraid.  I have nothing in your reality.”

“Don’t worry about it, Martouf.  We’ll take care of the ring later if we decide that we want
one.  We’ll work on the necklaces first, as that is what your people use,” Sam said, as she
realized that what Martouf said was true.  He literally had nothing in their reality.  It didn’
t matter, as he would soon have.  The Tok’Ra were communal to a point and tended to
share much of what they had.  Not that they didn’t have personal belongings or wealth.  
They did, but they also shared amongst themselves.

“Actually, the necklace is the custom from the Tok’Ra.  My people give a circlet of gold and
stones that one wears on the head.  It would thread through your hair and the stone
would set in the center of your forehead.  They are very lovely.  Perhaps, someday, I will
get one for you.  I do not know if the things that we left behind were ever found or not.  We
abandoned them when we left on our last mission.  We hoped to be able to retrieve them
after it was over,” Martouf said, his voice getting husky as he thought of the belongings
that he would never see again.  His mother’s circlet was there.  He had given it to
Samantha.

Jacob’s eyes flared, and Selmak came forward to say.  “We have Martouf and Lantash’s
belongings still.  Most of the clothing has been used, of course, but some of his personal
things, I have kept.  There is a circlet such as you describe.  I have it still.”

“Does it have blue stones?”

“Yes.  It does.”

“I will not know until I see it, but I believe that it was my mother’s.  I had given it to
Samantha.”

Selmak nodded.  “I have it, so you may have it back, when we return to the tunnels.”

“Thank you, Selmak.  That is very much appreciated,” Martouf’s smile widened, and it
was obvious that he was very happy at this news.  He had his joining circlet to give to his
mate.

“You are most welcome.  You should also know that I also have the necklaces that you and
Lantash, and Rosha and Jolinar wore, if you wish to have them.  I would suggest that, if
you do not mind doing it, you have them melted down and made into a new design for the
two of you.”

Lantash came forward, and said quietly, “I have no objection to doing that, Selmak.  
Thank you for thinking of it.  We will have it done as soon as we return to the tunnels.”

“Well, if you two are ready, we should go talk to General Hammond.  Jacob,” Selmak
stated stoically, “is very anxious to have this completed.”

Sam smiled wryly before responding, “Yeah, I just bet he is.”

Selmak grinned at her.

“What did she mean by that, Sel?”  Jacob asked.

“She meant that she knows her father very well, Jacob.  Very well, indeed.”  Selmak sent a
mental smile at his host as he added,
“And that she loves him very much, anyway.”

“Well, of course, she…hey, wait a minute!  What do you mean, anyway?”

Selmak hugged him.  
“I love you, anyway, too, Jacob,” he chuckled as they headed for the
general’s office.




“Jorlin, what do you think about this?  Major Carter was very specific in what her
costumes were supposed to be like.  We all talked it over and agreed that they are all
supposed to be the same.  Kathryn blushed slightly as she looked at the garment in her
hands.  It was a dream come true, that was for sure.  Made of deep blue silk and a chiffon
type material, it was straight out of the Arabian Nights or I Dream of Jeannie.  There were
several of them here in their sizes, in all colors and combinations of colors of the rainbow.  

“I would say, Lieutenant, er, Kathryn, that if you and the Major wear those, we should find
both Malek and Lantash in little puddles on the floor where they have melted, or perhaps,
we will just find black charred places where they have simply overheated and
spontaneously burst into flames.  If that is your intention, then, by all means, get them,
for they are most appropriate as lo’tar garments.”

“We’ll also need cloaks to wear over them.  I’m assuming that we will wear them under our
uniforms and change once we reach the planet where the mirror is.  The Major wouldn’t
be caught dead in this on base, unless she couldn’t help it, and frankly, neither would I.  
However, they will serve their purpose for this assignment, and then find a permanent
home in the Halloween costume storage box.  And, as I said, all of us agreed to wear these,
so it won’t be just the Major and I.  Alice wants some, and so does Capt. Adams.  Needless
to say, they have, ah, their own agendas, too, as I’m sure you’ve figured out by now.”

Jorlin laughed softly.  “I’ll be sure to find something for Sergeant Richards that Sergeant
Wayman will appreciate.”

Kathryn laughed with her, and then said, “Yes, by all means, let’s keep the guys’ clothes
in the realm of fantasy, as well.  I’m sure Anise will appreciate it as much as the rest of
us.  Any excuse that gets Dr. Jackson stripped to the waist, or at least shows off the bod,
will have all of our votes.  He really is hot.”  She sighed, before continuing, “so, what else
do we need?  Shoes?  Bracelets?  Head gear?  I’m not too up on the finer points of fantasy
wear, but somehow I just can’t see these outfits going well with combat boots.”

Jorlin looked down at the boots she was wearing and then at the outfit in her hands.  She
giggled at the incongruousness of the picture that it presented.  Kathryn was correct; the
boots would make the entire ensemble ridiculous.

Beginning to get into the spirit of the quest, Jorlin proved to be a fount of information.  
She stopped and cocked her head for a moment listening to her host.  “Kristin says that
since we do not know how long this mission will take, and we do not know what type of
cleansing facilities we will find along the way, we should get at least three apiece and then
also some things that would be warmer if we end up somewhere that is too cool for those.  
The ones you have here will take up very little packing area as there is very little material
to them, and what little there is will compress.  She suggests some of those robes over
there,” she said with a nod toward some gowns that were made of heavier fabrics.  

Katherine took one look and fell in love with them.  Made of a velvet-like material, the
sleeves were long and fitted, but had flowing over-sleeves.  The necklines varied, some
rounded, some squared, and some veed.  They all swept the floor and were made to look
as if they were two gowns, an under and an over skirt, but they were actually one piece.  
Some hugged the body with dropped waists, giving a very medieval look; others were more
in the Chinese fashion, and straighter, still others had a Regency flair to them with high
waists and mini trains.  She purchased three for each of the women.  Luckily, these would
fit all of them with a taking up of a hem, or from what she could tell the taking out of the
tucks, they could be enlarged.  These were meant to fit people of different sizes with minor
alterations.  They were great and they would be warm.  

It didn’t take long to outfit both Anise and Jorlin, as well, for some of these in the more
sumptuous fabrics were perfect for the female satellites.

By the time they finished their shopping for all the slaves, both male and female, she and
Jorlin were very good friends.  Seeing that Malek was waiting patiently for them to
accompany him to find clothing for the men playing the parts of System Lord and
satellites, they set to with a will.  In very little time, they had the three men suited in a
manner to turn any woman’s head, or have them fit in at Mardi Gras, Kathryn wasn’t sure
which.  

That wasn’t a fair statement, actually.  She and Jorlin had gone out of their way to
purchase things that would accent the respective men’s assets.  Personally, she couldn’t
wait to see Malek and Dev in the things they had purchased for him, and she was sure
that Major Carter was going to be very pleased with Martouf’s new clothing.  Even General
Carter was going to look pretty darned ‘hot’.  Sergeant Wayman and Capt. Adams wouldn’t
have any room for complaint.  She hoped that Malek was over being miffed by later this
evening.  He needed to teach her how to serve things, and what was acceptable and what
wasn’t.  

He was being just a tad snappish with her today.  Devlin, thank goodness, didn’t seem to
share his symbiote’s less than congenial mood.  She had a feeling that Malek’s problem
was something other than what
had not happened between them, though.  She’d be sure
to find out later.  

And if it was that she hadn’t dropped into bed with him at the nod of his rather arrogant
head, then he’d just have to learn to live with it.  She was a long way from being a prude;
however, on the other hand, she didn’t bed-hop either.  If Malek expected her to hop into
bed with him before she knew him and had built some kind of relationship, he was in for
a surprise, because she didn’t bed a guy unless she cared on some level.  They were
working on forming a caring friendship, but it wasn’t there yet.  It wasn’t that she wanted
some big lifetime commitment from him.  She didn’t expect happily ever after, but she did
expect respect and some type of emotional bond, even if it was only deep and caring
friendship.  

There was definitely sexual tension and attraction between them, and she liked both of
them.  She liked them a lot, enough, in fact, to take them to her bed.  She just wasn’t
quite ready to do that.  She shivered slightly and smiled to herself.  It wouldn’t be long
before she was willing to, though.  They really were delicious.  Mm.   

Then thinking of how Malek had been acting today, she sighed slightly.  She supposed
that she would have to discuss it with him.  They couldn’t go through this mission with
him acting as if he had a poker up his butt.   

She and Jorlin had purchased what passed for carryalls for the clothing and other
accoutrements.  They were basically just large bags made from a material similar to
burlap, with straps, and were long enough that a P
-90 and the accompanying ammunition
would fit well in them, along with other needs.  There were several sizes and they would
be able to put the necessary things out of their packs in them.  

Traveling with the Tok’Ra, they wouldn’t need a lot of medical supplies, but they would
still need their personal items; combs, soap, and such.  The carryalls would work fine.  
The outfits that they had settled on for the
slaves wouldn’t allow anything but a knife to
be concealed, however, each outfit had a matching waist carryall for traveling that was
just right for a few personal things and a zat to fit in.  The cloaks had inside pockets as
well as outside ones.  They would be able to use those to conceal weapons, if it was cool
enough to wear them.  Kathryn was glad that the Major had insisted that they be armed
in some way.  

They had no idea what the climate was like on the planet that they were heading for.  
They had been told that it was Pangara and Major Carter said that when they were there,
it was pleasant, but somewhat cool.

She wondered when the Major and Martouf and Lantash would get married.  Probably
before the mission.  And that reminded her.  Dr. Fraiser had said to look for something
that Major Carter could wear to get married in.  She didn’t want white, feeling that the
color made her looked washed out, but if they found something that looked like it would
work, to get it.  They could always use it for something else if it wasn’t suitable.  

Turning to Jorlin and Malek, she said, “I need to go back to the shop that we got the
costumes from.  I think that there might be a gown there that would be perfect for Major
Carter to get married in.”

Jorlin agreed, and Malek hefted what seemed to be dozens of the bags that he was
carrying and followed morosely.  The two women were also carrying some bags, but
somehow, he seemed to have the majority of them.  He sighed.  He hated shopping, and
Selmak knew it.  He sent them because of it, Malek had insisted to Dev.  He sighed again,
as he watched Kathryn walk.  He was getting hot.  

“You would not be getting hot, if you were not looking where you are,” Devlin chided him.

“Thank you for your commentary, Devlin, but when I desire your opinion, I will ask for it,”
Malek said tartly.

“Hah!  Little snappish, are we?  Why are you being so cool to Kathryn?  You have barely
spoken to her.”


“I do not know.  I did not sleep well.  You slept as one dead.”

“Yes, I slept quite well, thank you.  But then, I was not upset because a woman we are just
beginning to know did not fall at our feet and worship us by becoming our bedmate.”


“I do not expect her to worship me, Devlin,” Malek said quietly, obviously hurt by the
words.  
“That is unfair of you.”

Devlin sighed.  That was true.  Malek really did not expect that, and he was not in the
mood to take things lightly.  
“You are right.  That was an unfair and undeserved
statement.  I am sorry.”


“I realized that we will be acting as if we are her master for the duration of this mission.  
We cannot ask her to go to bed with us, while that is the case.  She might feel as if she
could not refuse us, and that would be unfair.”


Devlin sighed.  
“Malek.  Dear one, she will not be our slave, and we will not be her master.  
We are acting.  Yes, it must appear to others that she obeys us, but once our door is shut,
she will not be subservient to us.  That will pertain only in front of others.  Why would you
think that she would feel otherwise?”
 He wanted to know.

He felt the surprise that entered Malek.  
“I did not really think she would, but that she
might.  I do not wish to force her to do something that she does not wish to do.  If we ever
have a physical relationship with her, I do not wish to forever wonder if she felt she had no
choice, but to do as we asked.”


“If this truly bothers you, Malek, then it is something that you should bring out into the
open and discuss with her.  I believe that you will find that she will be surprised that you
would even consider that she might feel pressured into mating with us.  We will be equals
when the door closes at night, and I feel sure that will be her attitude.”


Suddenly Malek felt cheerier.  
“You are correct.  I do not know why I did not realize that
myself, but I did not.  I suppose I was thinking of the fact that we will not be able to let our
guard down.  She will have to be able to immediately drop back into her role, if something
happens, and I suppose I thought she might immerse herself in it to the point where she
would truly feel as if she was our slave.  I will discuss it with her to be very sure, though,
for my own piece of mind.  Thank you, Devlin.”


Devlin felt his relief and laughed, saying,
“You are welcome and I do understand.  You are
too used to the Tok’Ra and how we immerse ourselves in our roles when we play one.  We
have no choice, for to make a mistake could mean our death.  While I do not think that the
Tau’ri will become our slaves, I do believe that they will play their parts well.  And now that
you have decided to talk it over with her, why do you not try being a little nicer.  Otherwise,
she is liable to knock you up side the head with her P-90 when we get back.”

Malek laughed with his host.
 “I will, Devlin.  I promise.”

Jorlin looked at the dress that Kathryn was holding up.  “What do you think, Jorlin?” she
was saying.

“I think it is beautiful and she will be lovely in it.  The deep blue will make her eyes
bluer.  It is very elegant and simple.  I think that she will like it, as well.”

“It has this little head piece that goes with it that would work instead of a veil,” Kathryn
said as she looked at the dress again.  Simply cut, it was a dark blue brocade, rich in
texture and look.  It had long tight sleeves, a fitted waist, and a skirt with a small train.  It
also had an almost heart shaped neckline that plunged to a rather deep vee, but there
was nothing indecent about it.  There was a golden thread shot through the material here
and there that caught the light and shimmered.  The head piece was layers of lace that
hung down in the back from a tiara like crown.  It really would be a perfect wedding gown
if it fit, and it looked from the measurements that they had as if it would.  

They purchased it and turned to Malek as if to offer the package to him.  He smiled at
Kathryn and said somewhat sardonically, as he again attempted to keep a strap on one of
the bags from sliding off his shoulder, “I suppose I could carry it in my teeth.”  

Realizing what they had done to him, the women laughingly started to unburden and
share with him the many packages.  After a more equitable dispersal of their items, they
headed for the Chaappa’ai.  

“Thank the universe that this is over, at last,” Malek sighed to Devlin as they again fell
behind the women.  Watching the hips swinging in front of them, he grinned.

Devlin grinned back,
"Well, maybe it is not so very bad.  At least we have something
enticing to look at.  And now we know what Jacob meant when he said that Kathryn kept
falling behind us because she was admiring the view.  I am becoming rather partial to this
view myself.”


“I must agree, Devlin.  Yes, I do most certainly agree.”

Kathryn sent the code and they stepped into the event horizon.  She would remember this
place.  Shopping was really fun there.




Stepping out on the other side, they were surprised to see red, white, and blue bunting
everywhere.  What was going on?

“Hey, Siler, what’s up with all the bunting?  Surely we aren’t having dignitaries now?”  
Kathryn asked.

Sergeant Siler shook his head, saying, “No, but it’s all we had.  Major Carter and Martouf
and Lantash are getting married in a few hours, and the General said to make it as festive
as possible at such short notice.”

“We’ve sent out for flowers and stuff… a cake and whatever else women think is essential
to get married, I guess.”  He shrugged his denial of responsibility.

“Well, use lots of blue ‘cause it’ll match her dress.  Jorlin and I found the perfect thing.  
Oh!”  She turned to Jorlin, excitedly, “Jorlin, remember that really fancy, gorgeously
embroidered white shirt and the black suede pants that we found?  Didn’t we get that for
Martouf?  It’s fancy enough for a wedding, don’t you think?  And there was a cummerbund
type of thing that came with it, and the jacket.  Come on, we need to take this stuff to the
people they belong to and then get the dress and Martouf’s outfit to Janet.  Come along,
our trusty steed and carry our belongings just a few steps farther,” She threw over her
shoulder to Malek.

He grumbled, groaned, sighed, and obediently followed them down the hall.  
“It is more
likely that we will end up falling to our knees and worshiping her, Devlin,”
he groused.

“I am aware, dear one, but the rewards will be worth it.”

Once more watching her walk, Malek had to agree.

TBC





                       
Chapter Seven                    Home                    Chapter Nine             

                                                     
    Table of Contents

Where Destiny Leads

Chapter Eight

Formal Declaration of Intent