Part 8: Spirits of Protection
Kuk sat on his throne, brooding. The headaches were getting worse. Those stupid slaves were chattering away like a sky full of screeching seagulls. Why couldn’t they be silent? What was wrong with him? He couldn’t even sit still because his silk robes scratched against his skin. He knew from Ellison’s memories that he’d had these problems when his senses first emerged. But how had the detective gained control? There were parts of Ellison’s mind that were closed to him. This had never happened before. Everything in his mind should be available to Kuk. He could almost hear the man laughing inside his head.
Kuk was startled by a movement out of the corner of his eye. He turned with a jerk to see a large black cat staring at him with its teeth bared. He held out his hand to kill it with a blast of energy. The energy went through it like it wasn’t there. The creature swatted at his leg. He felt a searing pain as if he’d been scratched, but there were no marks on him. Then the black cat began to circle him with a murderous, mocking glare. “Guards! Guards!”
Two men rushed into the room. “Yes, Master?”
“Kill it! Quickly!”
“Kill what, Great Kuk?”
“That black monster right there!”
“But…there’s nothing there, Master.”
“You call me liar? Is this some plot to make me look foolish?” He reached out his hand. The guard trembled violently for several minutes before he fell to the floor in great pain—hurt, but alive.
Jim felt stronger somehow in the presence of his spirit guide. He reached out, making contact with Kuk inside his mind. “If you think I’m going to let you use my body to kill people, you’ve got another thing coming.”
Kuk put up his hands in a protective gesture. “Who are you?”
“I’m your very own personal ghost, Kuk. And I’ll be haunting you every step of the way until you turn yourself in or get out of my body!”
“This can’t be! You shouldn’t even exist anymore!” He noticed the guards staring strangely at him. He raised his hand to punish them, but found he couldn’t activate the weapon. “Get out of my site! Both of you!” The two men scurried out of the room.
Kuk retired to his bed chamber, hoping to rest and calm his nerves.
“Pleasant dreams, Kuk. I’ll be watching.”
The large black cat appeared in the corner. It lay down and proceeded to groom itself, never taking its eyes from Kuk. The God of Darkness didn’t sleep that night.
Jim was soon pleased to discover he could talk directly to Kuk and had at least a small measure of control over what Kuk did with his body. He could see from the alien’s thoughts that this was unusual—like a few other things about their joining. When Goa’uld took hosts, the host’s personality was subjugated. The Goa’uld would then have total access to the host’s memories. Even if Kuk had joined with him in a symbiotic relationship, they should have been able to completely share each other’s thoughts. There were parts of Kuk’s mind he couldn’t reach, just as there were parts of his own mind that Kuk couldn’t touch. When Jim first discovered this, he retreated to that barricaded area in his mind, surprised to find that it looked very much like the Peruvian jungle.
At first he could do nothing but watch as Kuk used his body to harm others. Jim had tried everything to get back into control, but it was as if he were on a tight leash. He’d almost given himself over to despair when the jaguar showed up. It infused him with the strength to pull at the leash until it stretched far enough for him to make trouble for Kuk. Ever since then he’d been studying his enemy’s defenses, exploiting his weaknesses. He now knew just what Kuk feared the most. Betrayal. Jim understood that very well. It had been his own greatest fear, one it took him years and heavy doses of the Sandburg antidote to cure. Blair had taught him trust. Jim’s knowledge of Blair was one of the things in Jim’s mind Kuk couldn’t touch. And it seemed Kuk didn’t know about the spirit guides, either. All the better.
The next morning, Jim and his spirit guide continued with a vengeance. The jaguar followed Kuk everywhere, snarling and pawing at him. Kuk tried to ignore him at first, but he became so persistently annoying that on several occasions Kuk yelled at him and called for his guards. They, of course, could see nothing, which only made Kuk even more frustrated. Jim wasn’t helping.
“You know that you’re men don’t really believe you’re a god, don’t you? Listen to them talk about you. They think you’re losing it. I bet a few of them are even planning to get rid of you and take over.”
At first Kuk refused to listen. But then he would stretch out his hearing out of curiosity.
Jim knew he’d pick up on some negative comments eventually. A lot of Kuk’s men really were loyal, but Jim could tell by looking at some of the other cons that they weren’t the type to bow and scrape to a nutcase for long. He was right. Kuk picked up a few disrespectful, even treasonous conversations. Jim didn’t let up. “They know you’re an alien. You’ve proven that to them already. But they certainly don’t believe you’re a god. Do you think they’ll tolerate some alien freak ruling over them? Think what they could do with this place, with that mirror gate, if they got rid of you. Several of them were convicted of drug trafficking. This would be the perfect place for a drug lab. The cops would never be able to touch it. They could make the stuff here then take it to earth to sell. They could use the mirror to live or hide out anywhere. And they’ve got built in workers. You’ve set everything up for them so well. They’re just waiting for the chance to get rid of you.”
Every day Jim and the spirit guide worked on Kuk until the alien was exhausted. He wasn’t eating or sleeping. He didn’t trust anyone and would keep himself locked up in his chambers most of the time. His bizarre behavior only fueled the grumblings against him—grumblings Jim made sure Kuk listened to with Sentinel hearing.
Sometime Jim would even trick Kuk into going into a zone-out on something Jim had learned control over long ago. Jim found he could bring Kuk out of the zone whenever he wanted because he was always perfectly conscious in his little jungle hideout. It made Kuk crazy to know he didn’t have complete control. He could never figure out how Jim was doing it, either. In as little as a week, Jim had turned a crazy, dangerous God of Darkness into an incoherent, paranoid wreck.
Cheyenne Mt., CO
Jack pulled his gun, the two guards rushing in behind him. “Put down the gun, mister! NOW!”
Blair moved closer to the general. “I think you’re forgetting something here, Colonel. I have a hostage. Unless you want to work for ‘General Swiss Cheese’, you put down your gun! And tell those two goons to take a hike.”
“Go on.” The two men looked at him for a minute.
“Go. We’ll handle this.” The guards left. Jack slowly backed away, but he didn’t put his gun down. “If you hurt him, there’s no way you’re leaving this base. If you give yourself up now…”
Blair snorted in disbelief. “I’ll get to leave the base? Oh, come on! I’m not that stupid. I know too much. Either way, you’re not going to let me leave.”
Daniel noticed the look of resolve on Jack’s face—he was thinking of ways to shoot Blair without endangering General Hammond. Daniel purposely moved between Jack and Blair.
“Jack. Let me talk to him. Blair. This isn’t you. We weren’t best friends or anything, but I remember the things you dreamed of doing, the ideas you talked about. I can’t believe you’d change that much.”
“That was a long time ago. You’re not the guy I remember, either.”
“Whatever problem you have here, we can talk about it without threatening people. Give me the gun. Please.”
“Why are you talking to me with that tone of voice—like I’m a nutcase or something?”
Jack rolled his eyes. “If the shoe fits…”
“Jack!” Daniel rubbed the back of his neck uncomfortably. “Well, you are holding a gun on an Air Force general in a top-secret base. What are we supposed to think?”
“Well, yeah. I guess it does look bad. I don’t know if I can trust you. The old Daniel—the scientist-dreamer? He was someone I could trust. But I don’t know about the secret-keeping, Air Force Daniel. I want to know what happened to Jim Ellison. I know you guys know where he is.”
“We’ve been investigating his disappearance…”
“Don’t give me that crap! I know what goes on here! I know about the aliens, and the Stargate, and the Goa’uld!” He pointed his gun at the generals’ head. “WHERE IS MY PARTNER? WHERE DID KUK TAKE HIM WITH THAT MIRROR GATE?”
Daniel put his hands up in a calm-down gesture. “Well, it seems you know our secrets, but you’re keeping a pretty spectacular one yourself.”
“What are you talking about?” Please let it not be about Sentinels.
“The fact that you friend is a Sentinel. That he can see, smell, hear, taste, and feel things way better than the average human.”
Jack shook his head. Not the Sentinel thing again!
Blair tried his best to look shocked. “That’s crazy! Sure, they were myths about guys like that in lots of cultures, but I could never find a real one. Don’t you watch the news? I made up that stuff in my dissertation. It was all a lie.”
“The press conference was a lie. That must have been hard for you—to throw away your future for Jim. He must be a great guy.”
“He’s my best friend, my brother.”
“I’ve seen him.”
“He’s here? Is he ok? So help me, if the military has hurt him in any way…”
“We don’t have him.” He looked to the general for confirmation. The general nodded, giving him the go ahead. “In fact, he’s not even on earth. But that’s not the worst of it. How much do you know about the Goa’uld and what they do to humans?”
“They were here on earth a long time ago. They used humans for slave labor and sometimes for hosts…” He saw the look of pity on Daniel’s face. “No! Not Jim! Please, no.” Blair didn’t even realize he’d dropped his gun. He slumped down to the floor in a daze.
Jack quickly picked up the gun and was ready to haul Blair away. Daniel went over to Blair, looking back at Jack and shaking his head. Jack backed off and let Daniel do his thing.