Chapter 27 summary: Rosha becomes Jolinar's new host.
[ Chapter 1: Goodbyes | Chapter 2: An Audience | Chapter 3: A Conspiracy | Chapter 4: Promotion | Chapter 5: Minor System Lord | Chapter 6: An Old Acquaintance | Chapter 7: Diversions | Chapter 8: Plans | Chapter 9: Happy Moments | Chapter 10: Culmination | Chapter 11: Complications | Chapter 12: Daily Life | Chapter 13: Exposed | Chapter 14: A New Host - and a New Master | Chapter 15: New Challenges | Chapter 16: A Necessary Sacrifice | Chapter 17: Information Gathering | Chapter 18: A Surprise Visit | Chapter 19: Bad News | Chapter 20: War and Power | Chapter 21: Emergencies | Chapter 22: Found Out | Chapter 23: In the Tunnels | Chapter 24: Undercover at Bastet's Court | Chapter 25: Discovered! | Chapter 26: Rosha | Chapter 27: Host | Chapter 28: Getting Along | Chapter 29: Safe | Chapter 30: Lantash | Chapter 31: Shared Missions | Chapter 32: Taking A Chance | Chapter 33: Danger and Betrayal | Chapter 34: Some Realizations | Chapter 35: Hiding | Chapter 36: Time for the Truth | Chapter 37: Home | Chapter 38: Together | Chapter 39: Martouf ]
"I shall be that new host. It would be my honour." She looked unsure. "Now, what must I do?"
"Open...your mouth...and do as if...as if you would kiss me. Hu...hurry. There is no...more time." Her eyes closed, as Lisha no longer had the strength to keep them open. *Goodbye, my...Jolinar...* She became unconscious.
Rosha quickly did as she was told, without thinking further about the consequences.
*Goodbye, my dear Lisha.* Jolinar gave her host a last 'hug', before withdrawing her tendrils and other connections.
Moments later, she felt cold air against her body, before she quickly slid over Rosha's lips and burrowed through the soft tissue at the back of her new host's throat. She moved as fast as possible, making new connections and sending out tendrils, then soothing the pain Rosha was feeling. She felt control of the host body automatically transferred to her, and Rosha momentarily blacking out.
There was no time for a proper blending, or even an explanation. She felt her new host come to, and sent her a warm feeling, doing her best to suppress her grief. Rosha did not need to deal with that right now.
Jolinar leaned over her dear Lisha, now dead. She felt tears threaten behind her eyes, but forced them back. Later, she promised herself. She gently closed Lisha's eyes.
"Goodbye, dear friend."
She felt Rosha's confusion - and rising panic, at her body moving, talking, without she giving the command to do so. When her body also did not obey her - but continued to obey Jolinar, Rosha's panic increased.
Jolinar sent calming, warm feelings towards Rosha as she picked up the zat'nik'tel. Promising she would explain, later, when there was time. That Rosha would be able to control her own body again. She fired three times at Lisha and the body disappeared. Rosha felt a surge of grief from Jolinar, which was quickly blocked.
Getting up, Jolinar ran silently to the door. She carefully peeked out and looked around. No one was there and she hurried outside. She began walking through the empty alleys, quickly, but quietly. From time to time she stopped and listened.
For a long time Rosha was so scared of the Jaffa finding them, that this feeling far outweighed her panic at not being able to control anything.
Then, suddenly, a new thought formed. She began to wonder why the Jaffa had been attacking Jolinar. Why were they still attacking her, if indeed they were? Had it been a test before? Perhaps she, Rosha, had not yet proven herself satisfactorily? Or were the Jaffa failing their test?
However, Rosha believed she sensed real fear from Jolinar... It was all so confusing! Nothing made any sense to her. She tried to lift a hand to the pendant she was carrying around her neck - as she usually would for good luck - and found she could not. That was when it truly hit her that Jolinar was the one controlling her body and not her. She panicked completely.
Fortunately, Rosha's panic attack had not happened while they were running from Jaffa. Jolinar had by now gotten them out of the labyrinth of narrow alleyways and into the undergrowth and bushes in the part of the forest that lay closest to the western part of the village. She was lying on the ground, observing the Jaffa as they torched the last standing parts of the town.
Rosha suddenly felt as if she was being embraced, and she began to relax as Jolinar released calming chemicals into her bloodstream.
*I am so very sorry, Rosha, but there was no time to explain before. I am very sorry that I had to remain in control for so long, this soon after you became my host, but it was necessary. I needed to get us away from that place before the Jaffa returned.*
*I understand, my Lord. My body is yours to command. I humbly apologize for panicking and pray that you will forgive me.*
Jolinar sighed. This was going to be difficult. She should not have taken this poor woman as her host, but it had been Lisha's last wish, and Rosha had agreed to the blending. Even if she clearly did not understand what it meant.
*Rosha, please understand. I am not a Goa'uld and I do not wish to be addressed as 'Lord'. I hope we will become good friends when you learn to trust me. You will of course be allowed to use your body. I am indebted to you for sharing your body. I am Tok'ra and we do not suppress our hosts.*
*But you are a god! Just like Tipana. You have the voice - and light shines from your eyes.*
*The Tok'ra and the Goa'uld are the same species, yes, but we are not gods. The Goa'uld merely pretend to be. You will understand better once we are fully blended.*
Rosha was quiet. Unsure if she could...dared believe this...god? But why would she lie to her? It was not as if Rosha could take control and tell anyone, against Jolinar's wish, was it?
Jolinar sighed. *No, you cannot. Unfortunately, this relationship can never be completely equal in that way. If I wanted to, I could keep control against your will, impersonate you, even. And there would be nothing you could do. However, I am Tok'ra, and we do not believe in doing so.*
*You can read my mind!*
*Yes...I try not to, but it is hard when you are thinking so loudly. I will show you how to keep your thoughts private, when you wish to do so.*
*Then you will not be able to read my mind?*
*Yes...but I would not do so. Doing that would be against all we believe in...*
Rosha still felt confused, unsure.
*I believe you...My Lord*, she added, a little more quietly - she thought perhaps Jolinar did not hear it.
Jolinar sighed again, deciding to try another tactic.
*If I were a god, I would be insulted - and hurt - by you lying to me, when you are not really trying to hide your thoughts and feelings. As it is, I am merely hurt you do not trust me and believe me. For this to work, I need you to be honest with me. For both our sakes.*
*I apologize. You are very kind.* Rosha - while still not certain what to believe - had to admit that this...god...or whatever she was...seemed willing to allow her existence, and to talk to her. She would be grateful for that. However, there was one thing she needed to know. *Jolinar...*
*Have I proven myself to you? Will you now bring back my family, my people?*
Jolinar groaned mentally. *Rosha...I am sorry. Did you think I would make your family alive again if you became my host?*
*Yes...* Rosha suddenly felt foolish. *I had...I had hoped...if I pleased you, my Lord.*
*Rosha...I cannot do that.*
*Then what must I do? Tell me, is there anything more I can do to prove myself to you? I ask for nothing for myself. I will gladly be quiet and never ask for control, if you will just allow my parents and siblings to live again. Please, my Lord...I...*
Jolinar hated this situation even more! She should never have taken this woman as her host! Though - the woman would probably have been caught and killed by the Jaffa, just as she, Jolinar would have died. Jolinar sighed. Perhaps this was better - if she could just get the poor young woman to understand. Maybe it would be better to find another host, leave Rosha...but this woman's entire world had just been turned upside down, everyone she ever knew, killed. It was...difficult.
*Please listen to me...Rosha...I would bring your family and friends back to life, make all of this so it had never happened, if I only could. However, I cannot. I have no complaints about you, in fact, I am deeply grateful for you becoming my host and saving my life. I dearly wish I could fulfill your wish, but I have no such powers. I am not a god. I am a mortal being, just like yourself.*
*But...you are the same as Tipana. As...as...Bastet.*
*Yes. They are also not gods. What appear as magic, is just technology.*
*Lies!* Rosha refused to believe her. *You have tricked me!*
*Such was not my intention. I am sorry if it appears that way. If you do not wish to remain my host, I will look for another, and leave you.*
*That will not change what has happened - and I have no where to go, have I? No one left - but me. I wish you had never saved me - if I had been killed by those...those Jaffa then I would have been spared much suffering...*
*Rosha! Do not say that! There are other worlds you can go to. I shall find a place you will be welcome. Now, we must think of escaping from this place - there will be time to think of the future later. How far is the chaapa'ai?*
*I do not know what that is.*
*The place where you brought the naquadah to, for Tipana's Jaffa to pick up.*
*The 'Ring of Tipana'.*
*Yes. How far?*
*At least four hours walk. Jolinar, can we go back and see what happened to my family first? My parents, my younger siblings.*
*I am sorry, but no. The Jaffa will still be there, and they would capture us. We cannot go back.* Jolinar told her, truthfully. She did not mention that even if they could have gone back, she would have insisted they did not. She would spare Rosha from seeing what the Jaffa had done to her family.
Rosha just accepted it, mutely.
*Rosha - we will go as close as we can to the chaapa'ai, and see how heavily it is guarded. We will most likely not be able to get through it while the Jaffa are here, though, so we must hide until then. Do you know of a place?*
*There are caves in the mountains, but it is a long journey. More than a day through the forest, before we even reach the foothills, and I am still weary from my journey. How long will the Jaffa stay?*
*Normally, for a very very long time. Bastet would not give up easily, but in this case she may have to. I was pretending to be a Goa'uld at her court, and have hidden a computer virus in Bastet's computer systems. It will lay passive for as long as it receives a signal from me every 7 days. When it does not, it will wreck much havoc on her systems, and she will have no other option than to return and take care of it. Especially since her mothership will signal all nearby Goa'uld where she is - and that she has only one ha'tak with her. It has been 2 days since I last sent the signal, so in another 5 days she must leave. That is how long we must wait before we get a chance to escape.*
*I do not understand what you talk of.* Rosha sounded completely confused.
Jolinar felt like hitting herself over the head - how could she have been so stupid? Of course, Rosha would not know what a computer was!
*I am sorry. I am a fool. For now, all you need to know is that I have sabotaged Bastet's ship - among other things - and made so that her enemies will learn of her presence here, and that she is vulnerable, because she has few military forces with her. She will leave - with her Jaffa. Believe me. It will happen when my sabotage takes effect, which is in 5 days.*
*Then you can do magic!* Rosha sounded awed. *You can control what will happen in the future!*
*No - again just technology. Think of an analogy like this; imagine you have been told to protect a house from the rush of water in the spring. You make a dam over the waterway, but since the owner of the house is your enemy, you make it of soft sand. It will block the water at first, but in time, the sand will be washed away and the water will come through and wash away what was protected before. It is the same idea.*
*My enemy would be stupid not to see the dam was made of soft sand!* Rosha exclaimed, then thought it over. *But I do see what you mean. Is Bastet stupid?*
Jolinar laughed. *In a way. In fact, she is very very intelligent and cunning. Frighteningly so, actually, but she does not know to look for this sabotage, because it is made in a way she does not suspect, and which is not easily seen. It is invisible - unless you know it is there - until it activates.*
*Then you are more intelligent than her.*
*I would like to think so.* Jolinar smiled. She really hoped that was the case. Hoped that Bastet had not - somehow - found her computer virus and deactivated it. She was suspicious, as well as clever.
*Would you like control until we reach the chaapa'ai...the Ring of Tipana?* Jolinar felt Rosha's constant battle not to fret - or outright panic - at the situation.
*You are wise - I am not yet able to suppress my desire for control of the body which was once mine. I promise I shall soon learn.*
*The body is still yours - and it will be ours if you agree to remain my host. When you know enough about me and the Tok'ra cause to make an honest decision. I have neither the right, nor the desire, to maintain control permanently. You will learn to feel less uneasy during the times I have control, but for now, you should keep control whenever there is no threat.*
Jolinar 'stepped back' mentally, and 'pushed' Rosha fore.
Surprised, elated - and grateful, the young woman flexed her fingers and took a deep breath, enjoying it all before she began walking.
*Thank you...Jolinar.* She smiled, relieved. *I had not thought I would ever be allowed to control my body again.*
They continued walking in silence for some time, making good speed. It was not quite four hours later, when they reached the outskirts of the forest, just before the Stargate.
Fortunately, they could overlook the area without being seen, especially now, when it was still very dark night. Jolinar estimated it was around midnight, and only one moon - the smallest - was up. It would provide enough light for them to see any guards in the open area around the Stargate, but would hide them against the darker forest.
*There - a guard. Do you see him?* Jolinar focused her attention on the Jaffa she had spotted. In effect, she 'pointed' at him, mentally.
*Yes, yes I do! There are three more with him.*
*Good catch! You are correct.* Jolinar sighed. *So it is guarded. Knowing Bastet, there will be four guards at the chaapa'ai - those we have now spotted - and an additional twelve guards in a small guards post, at most 50 feet away...yes, there. You see? Beside that group of trees. They will work in shifts of 2 hours each - Bastet is careful, and will not dare letting them get tired, and so risk me getting through the chaapa'ai.*
*Can we kill those four without the twelve noticing?*
Jolinar weighed their possibilities. *Yes, perhaps. However, we would not be able to activate the chaapa'ai quickly enough to escape from the twelve others. It makes an unfortunate amount of noise.* She sighed.
*We will go to the mountains and find one of those caves you mentioned, and lay low there until Bastet leaves in 5 days.*
Chapter 28: Getting Along