TITLE: The Mess Hall Reviews
AUTHOR: Roeskva
CATEGORY: Humour, short story
DISCLAIMER: All publicly recognisable characters and places are the property of MGM, World Gekko Corp and Double Secret Productions. This piece of fan fiction was created for entertainment only and not monetary purposes and no infringement on copyrights or trademarks was intended. Any similarity to real persons, living or dead, is coincidental and not intended by the author.
SUMMARY: Malek and his host Johan experiences Tau'ri food.
STATUS: Complete
AUTHORS NOTES: * denotes thoughts or host/symbiote communication.

*So, what would you like to try, Malek?*

*All of it. They told us we could have what we wanted, and I am very hungry after helping SG-1 set up that research station on P2X-5...something. Why can't they give their planets real names? We're people, not machines!*

*I don't know. The Tau'ri are strange.* Johan sent soothing feelings towards his agitated symbiote. Not that he could blame him for feeling that way. The line ahead of them was still very long and they were very hungry. He hoped this place had edible food. Selmak had been spreading rumours about how bad some Tau'ri food was, but she could often be a little touchy if things were not exactly as she was used to. Come to think of...her current host was the same. It was just too bad they were generally used to different things. It had resulted in a fair amount of entertaining episodes between Selmak and her host. Johan grinned a little to himself.

While Johan had been thinking, they had moved forward and had by now picked up a tray.



*There is almost no food left!* Malek complained. He quickly snatched some sort of fillet covered with what might be breadcrumbs. Looking around he spotted something undefinable - a very finely pureed vegetable, perhaps? He secured himself a large helping of it, and finished by pouring a thick gravy over it all.

*That looks absolutely disgusting!*

*I am not denying that, but looks can be deceiving. Besides, the others are eating it, so it must be edible.* Malek discovered a salad and some bread which he added to the tray as well. Seeing the strange blue gelatinous dessert Sam usually ate, he decided to try it as well. Finally he took a glass of milk and a cup of coffee, before he decided it would have to be enough.

Looking around the room, he found a free space in the corner, where he could sit undisturbed. He hurried over there and put his tray on the table, sitting down tiredly on the chair.

*Why did you take the blue stuff? It looks toxic! Food is not supposed to be blue!* Johan sounded appalled.

*Martouf told us Samantha Carter likes it very much, don't you remember? I trust her opinion and wanted to see if I appreciate the dessert as well.*

*He also told us he thinks it is a bit too sweet - and that Lantash says it contains artificial colour and flavour, among other things. All of which he disapproves of Martouf ingesting. Do you really wish to eat something like I that?*

*Lantash always overreacts when it comes to food. Poor Martouf never gets to eat anything interesting. Now, let us be adventurous and try these Tau'ri food stuffs!*

Johan sighed to himself as Malek shoveled a large amount of the pale yellowish puree, covered with the brown gravy, into his mouth. For a moment he just sat there, feeling as if the food grew in his mouth - immediately regretting his adventurous spirit. Malek felt like spitting it all out, but decided against it. It would be too embarrassing.

He felt Johan hide and block himself off from any further sensory input as well as he could, while Malek forced the offending food down.


*What was that?* Johan asked, ignoring the comment.

*I think the puree is mostly potato, but there is so much butter - and other fat in it - that it hides much of the taste. The gravy...well, I can give you a chemical analysis if you really want it, but...*

*No, thank you! Enjoy your food!* Johan went back to hiding.

Malek sighed. At least neither of it was directly harmful - in moderate amounts, at least. He could eat it and at least feel full. He cut out a small piece of the strange block with what appeared to be breadcrumbs on it. It looked like some sort of white meat, perhaps chicken. He tasted it carefully. Yes, it was indeed chicken, though very dry...and the bread, fat, and egg it was rolled in did not enhance the taste. He sighed again and slowly began eating the food, ignoring the taste as well as he could. At least the chicken could be cut in small pieces and swallowed with the milk. Except for tasting as if it had been cooked, the milk was relatively inoffensive, as was the salad. He finally managed to eat it all. Now he was ready for the dessert. Or perhaps he should try the coffee first.

*Johan? Would you like to try the coffee or the blue gelatinous dessert?*

*No, thank you. You can have it.*

Malek took a sip from the coffee. He made a face, realising Selmak had been correct. It taste vile. Very bitter. On to the dessert. He was feeling less optimistic by now, but at least that meant he was not going to be disappointed.

He slowly chewed on a small amount. *It is actually...good.* Malek sounded surprised. *There is a somewhat chemical taste to it, and it is very sweet, just as Martouf says...but oddly enough...I like it!*

*Really?* Johan cautiously agreed to taste as well. *You are quite right. It is delicious! Malek - we need to try the other colours as well! I saw there were four kinds! Hurry, before they are sold out!*

Malek concurred and stormed up to the serving counter. There he quickly grabbed one of each of the four different types of Jello left - to the shock and entertainment of everyone else. It was not every day you saw a Tok'ra behave like that!