Actions

Work Header

Wowbagger's Quest

Chapter Text

Mistaken Identity

 

 

During Return of the Sith, Anakin Skywalker encounters a strange, rude being on his way to join the Jedi in confronting Supreme Chancellor Palpatine.

 

A Star Wars Episode III/Hitchhiker’s Guide To the Galaxy Crossover:

 

 

It is said that, theoretically, history can be altered by the mere flip of a coin, which will in turn create a parallel universe. If that is indeed the case, the Universe as a whole must be an even crazier place than many first surmised. Considering the vast numbers of odd species, hokey religions, and ancient weapons out there, that would make the Universe a pretty crazy place indeed, a place where anything can happen at any time. Here’s a time when it did:

 

Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker angrily paced the hangar bay, glowering at the engines of the dropship bearing the Jedi Masters to arrest Supreme Chancellor Palpatine. His friend, his mentor in the arena of politics, and a Sith Lord.

 

The only one who can save Padme`.

 

He didn’t trust the Jedi to take him in alive, and began to stalk over to his airspeeder, to go after them and do…something, when Fate farted, and the fate of a tiny, insignificant galaxy changed.

 

A small, saucer-shaped ship descended over the landing pad and began to hover, extending spindly landing gear. In a stunning display of wealth, it was solid chrome all over. To Anakin, this chrome so reminiscent of the Naboo ships meant one thing-Padme`wants to see me.

 

He knew she was still back at her apartment, but this ship could be here to deliver a message too personal for the comm. system. Using the brilliant foresight and good judgment *Cough* that he had displayed several times before, Anakin jogged over to the ship he had never seen before with a grin on his face. He was going to hear from Padme.

 

Imagine, if you will, his surprise, when instead of a human in Naboo livery, he watched a tall, thin alien with gray skin, in a gray robe descend the ramp.

 

It looked at a datapad, “Anakin Skywalker?” it asked, with a face suggesting extreme malevolence.

 

“That’s right,” said Anakin, in a petulant tone, “What do you have for me?”

 

The alien paged through the datapad, and nodded, letting it drop to his side, and giving a nasty grin.

 

“Anakin Skywalker, you smell. You’re a semi-evolved putrescent simian with disgustingly pathetic delusions of adequacy.”

 

Our hero was dumbstruck. “Excuse me?”

 

The gray alien looked at him quizzically,

 

“You are Anakin Skywalker?”

 

“Err- Yes?” he stammered.

 

“Anakin Renk Skywalker formerly of Distina?”

Anakin’s eyes narrowed. “Anakin Skywalker, formerly of Tatooine.”

 

The alien turned a paler shade of gray “Oh. Terribly sorry. In that case, I believe I was going to…” it checked the datapad, “Ah, yes. Call you a know-nothing nerf herder with no fashion sense. ”

 

It turned to go back up the ramp.

 

Anakin felt his anger rise again, and viciously clamped down on it. After all, to be fair, Jar-Jar was more aggravating.

 

He unclipped his lightsaber from his belt, but left it unlit. “Just a minute!”

 

“What now?” sighed the alien.

 

“I think you owe me an explanation for insulting me-twice!”

 

It made a rude noise, and continued walking.”

 

How dare this, this nothing insult me.

 

His blade lit with a Snap-hiss, and the alien turned, an eye ridge raised.

 

Anakin was dangerously close to losing it, but he decided to give the Light Side of the Force one final chance and apply secret Jedi negotiating techniques-Translation: Guilt tripping worse than a Chandrilan mother. In a measured, controlled voice, he continued,

“Perhaps I deserve an explanation because you fouled up on insulting me the first time and I'm really worried about something already?”

 

“Oh, very well.” drawled the alien, and Anakin extinguished his blade.

 

“I am Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged,” it said, bowing elegantly.

 

“Infinitely Prolonged? What does that mean?” asked Anakin, suddenly a bit more attentive.

 

“It means I'm immortal, you twit,” it replied, “Thanks to an accident with an irrational particle accelerator, a pair of rubber bands and a liquid lunch. Nothing spectacular-Even a monkey like you ought to be able to duplicate the circumstances.”

 

The alien then saw the pathetically eager expression on the young Jedi's face, and his estimation of Humanity's intelligence dropped even further.

 

“Chosen One my hairless gray arse.” It muttered under its breath, “Wouldn’t recommend it though, those who tried it after me had some nasty side effects, and those that have it, and supposedly know how to handle immortality are a load of serene bastards.”

 

“But wait,” Anakin pressed, “What did you do with your immortality?”

 

“Well, going to funerals of acquaintances got old after a while, so I decided to keep busy by insulting every living being in the galaxy-alphabetically. Then some idiot named Mckay opened a trans-universal bridge so now I have a whole series of universes to insult now. Gives me something to do I suppose.”

 

“I…see.” Anakin mumbled .

 

“Take it from me,” said Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged, in a world-weary tone, “Immortality’s great for the first thousand years, but after that, it gets bloody boring.”

 

“You’ve lived longer than Master Yoda, what do you recommend instead?”

 

Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged scratched its chin, “Find a cute girl, have a few drinks, and figure out the rest later.”

 

Anakin grinned, “Well, I’ve got the girl. I even married her.”

 

Wowbagger nodded, “Idiot. I suppose you're starting a family too,”

 

The blond Jedi nodded eagerly.

 

“Anakin!” The voice of Mace Windu cut through the conversation like a lightsaber through butter. (Why one would want to cut butter with a lightsaber is beyond me, but it makes a nice metaphor in this instance.)

 

The tall, dark skinned Jedi was dragging a very angry-looking Supreme Chancellor Palpatine along at saber-point by the scruff of his neck.

 

“You’re married?” He said, incredulously.

 

His grin widened to face splitting levels, “Yup, and I’ve got a kid on the way. Now I’m gonna go home to the wife, have a drink to celebrate a new Skywalker, and watch some smashball.”

 

 

He looked at Palpatine, “Sorry Chancellor, but I’m going to have to refuse your offer to betray the Jedi in order to save my wife from dying in childbirth. Now that I’ve had some time to think about it, the timing of those ‘visions’ was a bit too convenient.”

 

Wowbagger nodded approvingly, “Maybe you're not quite the moron I first suspected. If you keep that up, you might even live to see thirty.”

 

Palpatine and Windu’s eyes widened.

 

“Bye, Wowbagger, thanks for the advice. Good luck insulting the Galaxy.” With that, Anakin turned and walked to the airspeeder, to his family, and away from a creepy old man in dark robes and a pretty badass Jedi Master.

 

“Hope your wife's smarter than you are or your children are in a lot of trouble.” Wowbagger said by way of goodbye.

 

Palpatine turned, glanced at the stranger again, and spoke

 

“If you have the power to aid my escape you will be handsomely-” He broke off, did a double-take, and stared at the gray alien with a glint of recognition entering his yellow eyes.

 

“You…..” he hissed


“Chancellor Palpatine, you-Oh, I’ve done you before, haven’t I?”

 

Wowbagger turned to the Jedi Master.

 

“Mace Windu?”

 

“Yes?”

 

“Nothing. See you in thirty years.” With that, Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged turned, marched up the ramp of his ship, and blasted off.

Chapter Text

Your HALO's Crooked

 

The Master Chief, alternatively known as Spartan 117, The Demon, That Hyperthyroid Green Dude With All Those Guns (Coined by an uninformed day shift manager of the Central New Mombasa Qwik Stop just moments ago,) and John to his few surviving comrades, swore foully.

 

 

As foully as someone kidnapped from elementary school and raised by Navy CPO's can. Which was pretty foul.

 

The Covenant had invaded Earth, and he was currently occupying a desolate stretch of road in New Mombasa, surrounded by Elites, outnumbered, outgunned, and out of time.

 

 

Worse still, the Covenant Invasion had ensured that the immense soldier had missed lunch in the Cairo Station Mess on Thai Food Day. He and Sgt. Johnson had been looking forward to it for a week.

 

His eyes narrowed.

 

Those Covenant bastards would pay for keeping them from their Chicken Satay. And for the whole “Invading Earth Thing” too.

 

“Chief!” Cortana hissed into his brain as the Elites closed in, “Pay attention, are you trying to get us both killed?”

 

Always with the Chief, Chief, Chief, stuff. I wonder what it would take for her to call me John. She really hasn't been the same since that Windows 25 Update. All eccentric and harping. It's like being in a sexless relationship with a crazy person. Not that the UNSC gave me a chance at the earlier bit...

 

Thinking about being raised to protect people who had an opportunity for happiness that he didn't made John mad. He used it, muttering;

 

Okay, You fight the face-tearing aliens next time, and I'll backseat drive.” to Cortana, while conducting a millisecond-long check of his weapons, noticing two frag grenades still riding his belt, which didn't seem to explode as well as they did on HALO, a Battle Rifle – all but useless against multiple Elites at close quarters, and the final “weapon,” a Submachine gun.

 

Actually, calling it a weapon was an insult to all the other weapons. Even terrible ones like the still-infamous Chauchat machine gun from the First World War that he and all the other Spartans had learned about by the age of ten, instead of how to be kids.

 

At least the Chauchat hurt something it hit when it occasionally fired, the Chief thought. Unlike the much derided “Staple-Machine Gun.” (an uncomplimentary name derived from the approximate projectile size and commensurate stopping power) offered by its ammunition.

 

And the damn thing still has the recoil of a howitzer. John mused. Probably just more unscrupulous military contractors taking advantage of the goddamned alien invasion to bribe the bribe-able and ram high-cost, low-quality weapons into production while they dodge taxes. Actually that probably explains why damn near every USNC base and ship has different weapons.

 

As the Elites moved ever closer, The Master Chief spoke calmly a low, dangerous tone of voice,

 

Cortana, take a memo: If we live through this, and it gets bad enough for penal battalions, the committee members who designed this abortion, and the stockholders who pushed it on Appropriations are getting conscripted and handed this piece of crap to fight with.”

 

A light chuckle at the back of his subconscious made John reconsider his previously negative assessment of Cortana's changes as he drew the SMG and prepared for the fight of his life.

 

***********

 

 

As he wound up and threw the SMG at the head of the nearest approaching Elite with the best muscles that experimental procedures conducted on children could buy, the cheap plastic frame shattered on impact. It did managed to knock the alien out though, and gave the Chief a chance to grab its plasma rifle to double-tap it before staring down the next-closest elites.

 

However, the battle was interrupted by a flying chrome saucer straight out of a low-budget science fiction movie parking on the nearest two alien soldiers with the light touch, grace and brotherly feeling that would be displayed by an inebriated Russian tank driver who had been given the opportunity to motor his vehicle through one of Hitler's birthday parties.

 

Blue blood spattered the immaculate chrome plating, the other Elites checked their advance, and a ramp descended impossibly from the smooth underbelly of the craft, with somebody on it.

 

The Chief took a moment to asses his new visitor, who was t aller than a Grunt by far, yet skinnier than an Elite, with gray skin, bland gray robes, and whose motile facial features resembled a human male, and which were currently arranged in what looked like a very comfortable expression of absolute derision for all and sundry.

 

Was this some sort of new Covenant Species? The Chief thought, It seems like I meet to or three new ones each time they launch a new campaign. At least that keeps things interesting...

 

However, in acknowledgment of the fact that he had fewer enemies to fight because of the newcomer's choice of parking spots, John decided to keep his weapon aimed at the Elites instead.

 

It was a good decision.

 

The Covenant forces on the other hand decided that the intruder who had flattened two of their comrades warranted a killing. Plasma rifles and energy swords held in large alien hands shifted their aimpoints to bracket the new stranger, who looked remarkably unconcerned.

 

Hey all of you!” it shouted to the Elites in an impeccably British accent, “Your names are nearly impossible to pronounce, so I'll just say you look like Predator on an off day, smell worse than a Hutt's colonic, and your Creche-Mothers were the most fun I've ever had in weekend!”

 

The aliens shrugged and looked at each other, muttering in their strange tongue. The gray alien muttered something uncomplimentary and produced a small remote which barked out a phrase in their language, presumably the same thing he just said in English.

 

The Chief waited for him to be vaporized, but his face just grew a nasty, twisted grin as he pressed a button on the small remote in his hand.

 

Several blurs shot out of one of the small spacecraft's legs, each one curving around the Chief to slam with tremendous velocity into the faces of the gathered Covenant troopers, dropping them all.

 

The Master Chief inspected one of the downed Covenant troopers, . It looked like a pie? looked behind him.

 

Flabbergasted by the incredulity of it all, he took a moment to orient on the alien and ask, “Is-is that-”

 

Pie? Yes, Banana Cream,” It muttered. “I can't say much for you earthers, but your Three Stooges – Classic.”

 

You have something to tell me?” The Chief asked, bluntly as usual, “Or are you here to help us fight them?” he indicated the downed Elites.

 

The gray alien smiled beautifically, “No John. Can I call you John?” It asked, “I'm not here to help you.”

 

I go by John to my friends.” Like Cortana. He thought, glaring at the alien (which was rendered surprisingly ineffective by the fact that he was glaring through a reflective visor.You get to call me Master Chief, and you get to tell me why you're here and how you know my name.”

 

The gray Alien shrugged. “I'm checking off a little list of mine. I had to do that lot-”
he jerked his head at the prostrate, pie-bespattered Elites, “-all in one go, but I've got a bit of time set aside for you.”

 

Me?” The Chief asked.

 

You.” the alien replied, “You're a mess, Chief. You're a miserable bugger. No life outside the military, no boy or girlfriend, and the closest you've come to getting laid is fantasizing about the computer program that lives in your head.”

 

Chief?” Cortana asked, “Anything you want to tell me.”

 

We'll talk about it later.” Growled John. He stared back at the alien, “Any reason you wanted to tell me all this?”

 

Like I said,” The other being replied, “I'm checking off a list. Insulting the Multiverse. Honestly I'm a bit disappointed in your lack of reaction. Really kills it for me.”

 

I know what I am.” The Chief shrugged, “And you didn't make me miss Thai food night, so I can't get too mad. Watch yourself around Sgt. Johnson though, he might just shove that ship up your ass.”

 

Point noted.” said the gray stranger, “Well, I'm off. Have a lovely invasion.” It bowed elegantly, and the Chief, smiling in spite of himself returned it.

 

Then, the alien walked up the ramp, sealed it, and as abruptly as it was there, the silver ship was gone, leaving behind a striped towel with a note on it:

 

This may come in handy some day.

 

The Chief reached down and grabbed it, noticing some Covenant dropships heading toward the waterfront district.

 

John?” Cortana asked, “What sort of fantasies was he talking about.”

 

We'll talk about it later.” the Chief said, draping the towel over his shoulders and hefting the Battle rifle, “I promise. In the meantime, since we have some unruly guests to take care of, and I have a new towel, how would you like to throw a beach party.”

 

Cortana's laugh was music in John's ears as they moved towards the next battle.

 

Chapter Text

Sticks and Stones

 

It was not an ordinary day for SG-1. They were exploring an alien planet, and nothing had happened to them yet. No strange ruins, no System Lords trying to capture them, and no dangerous foliage was trying to eat them.

 

Even the weather was nice, so they had stopped for a lunch break, digging into their MRE's with the same enthusiasm that would be felt by a Goa'uld parasite if it had somehow been transported to the ingredients section of a cut-rate sushi bar, until Teal'c produced a massive bottle of hot sauce for the bland meal and Jack pulled out some Twinkies. They ravaged the plastic-y pastries with gusto while scanning the horizon unceasingly, and waiting for something to go horribly, horribly wrong.

 

The flagship team of the SGC hadn't survived this long without gaining a firm grasp on the principles of narrative causality which appeared to run their lives. Clearly, something dangerous was just around the corner.

 

Lurking.

 

The first sign they had that something had gone wrong was when the scheduled check-in period had passed and they had received nothing. Carter noticed that the MALP telemetry was down. Evidently the probe could no longer relay the SGC's radio signal.

 

“Oy,” kvetched O'Neill, “All right everyone, lock and load. We're going back to the gate to check it out.”

 

Grumbling, SG-1 shouldered their packs and readied their weapons.

 

“You know, Jack, it could be nothing.” Daniel said in an obnoxiously optimistic voice as the other three team members turned and glared at him.

 

“You know Daniel,” Jack said in an nasally imitation, “If you didn't get the crap beaten out of you every time these things went wrong, you'd be absolutely insufferable. With as many times as that's happened, I'm amazed you can be so upbeat about everything.”

 

“Indeed.” Teal'c added, “It is most peculiar DanielJackson.”

“Oh,” said the archaeologist, brightly, as he stubbed his toe on a well-hidden rock, and resumed moving at a hobble, “That's easy to explain. The allergy pills I take induce mild euphoria as a side effect.”

 

“Any other side effects we should be aware of?” asked Carter worriedly.

 

 

“Not much,” he said evenly “Only slight homicidal tendencies when confronted with the color orange, a covert fascination with kitchen plumbing, and irritable bowel-”

 

 

“Thank you, Daniel,” Jack interrupted, “I think I've heard enough.”

 

 

“I think we've all heard enough,” Carter agreed emphatically, “and look,” she said, pointing to a familiar hill that they remembered from earlier in the day, “we're almost there.”

 

 

“Okay campers,” Jack said, “We'll split up. Teal'c and I will go right around the hill, Carter and Daniel will go left, and we'll see what's up. Daniel, try not to shoot us.”

 

 

 

He paused and rolled his eyes, “You know, again.”

 

 

“It was just the one time.” Daniel hissed, “And I rubbed up against a hallucinogenic plant that looked like a rock. I thought you were all zombies.” He scrunched up his face, and tried to remember, “At least I think it was zombies. Anyway, I said I was sorry.”

 

“We know,” said the team in unison.

 

“That's not important right now.” Carter said, “Let's just edge around the hill nice and slow.”

 

Jack nodded, “Sounds like a plan. Next time, I'll probably be the one who goes all psycho-Woodstock on you guys. It is my turn after all.”

 

The rest of the team regarded him warily for a moment, and then shook their heads and chuckled quietly as they moved out.

 

Despite being veteran intergalactic travelers, SG-1 was unprepared for what they saw when they edged nervously around the hill.

“Holy Ed Wood.” Muttered O'Neill. It was the first thing that came into his head. A chrome flying saucer straight out of a fifties B-movie was parked on top of their probe, (which didn't look like a probe anymore,) balanced awkwardly on two of four legs,

 

Jack rode a wave of “Earth vs Flying Saucers” nostalgia as he looked over to see Carter practically salivating at the chance to poke around in some more alien doodads.

 

That meant they overlooked the ship's sole occupant, who straightened up from behind the destroyed MALP and cleared its throat.

 

“Hem.”

 

The team snapped their weapons. Shocked out of their momentary complacency and left trigger happy by the lack of anything happening all mission, this new grey interloper was left staring down the barrels of two P-90 Personal defense weapons, a Beretta M9, and the business end of a Zat-nikitel, or “Zat” gun.

 

It shrugged and raised the object in its hand, which resulted in Jack quickly nodding to Teal'c and the Zat being promptly discharged into the alien's face.

 

As electric-blue energy that could knock a Rhino on its rear wreathed the interloper, the team was surprised by a distinct lack of their present target falling over and going “thud.”

 

This was bad. Then it got worse. A closer inspection of the creature's hand revealed that it was holding a Sharpie. Not just any marker, but an actual, brand name Sharpie marker straight from office supply closets and the nightmares of teachers with brand-new whiteboards.

 

“Tickles” Said the Alien in a toneless voice. Its facial expression did not alter one iota.

 

“Colonel Jack O'Neill?” it asked, glancing down to check a hand-held computer, and then looking back up, “With two L's?”

 

“Yah,” Jack said in his best Minnesota bland, “That's me. Who's asking?”

 

“I'm Wowbagger, the Infinitely Prolonged, but that's not important right now. What is important is that you're a bore O'Neill, an absolute nod-offer from one of the more spectacularly boring regions of your tiny little dust speck, whose frantic attempts to find humor in depressing situations are less funny than your pathetic attempts to fish.”


“Kaaay” Jack said, nonplussed. “Well, that's just like, your opinion, man.”

 

The alien reached into its pocket in and pulled out a clipboard with a massive wad of paper clamped in it, that couldn't have possibly fit inside the pocket. As Carter's eyes bulged even more than they were already, it opened the Sharpie and wrote something on the clipboard.


“Right, that's you done then” It said to O'Neill, then proceeded to engage in a silent staring contest with Teal'c for about two minutes, circling each other while probing one another for signs of weakness.

 

Each came to a conclusion about the other, and each made an economical hand gesture encouraging the other to go first. Finally Wowbagger spoke;

 

“You're a contradiction, Teal'c and the eye makeup paired with your shaved head makes you look like a Bhudda in drag. I'm surprised no one's sent you back to Chulak in tears yet.”

 

The former First Prime bowed his head in acknowledgment of a point scored,

 

“In-deed.” he rumbled “I would have undergone much ridicule to look as magnificent as I do now, but no one dares taunt me.” He smiled serenely. “I have removed spleens for less. However, your tragic misapplication of color theory only serves to highlight your insecurity relating to your appearance and concurrent petulant state. An olive or brown blazer, close-cut would do much to contrast your bland skin tone and render you more intriguing and intimidating.”

 

At this, the team lowered their guns and their heads whipped around and focused on the Jaffa Warrior, who simply gave a vulpine smile, “I have found many of your reality television programs insightful into not only your American culture, but of the egocentric and appearance-driven nature of the Goa'uld System Lords we are engaged in legendary combat with. I also now know that the appropriate rug is an overlooked feature in that really ties a room together, and how to say “Yes to this dress” – Dre'yauc was pleased with my return from the expedition to the House of Nordstrom in the recent Yuletide season.”

 

“Olive?” Said the alien? “Really?”

 

Teal'c nodded. “Indeed.”

 

“Huh. Hey, if you don't mind me asking, how come you're not all mad at me for insulting you? Or at least crashing on your robot-probe thingy?”

“MALP!” Interjected Carter, “It stands for-” She trailed off as the rest of the team shook their heads. “Well fine. If you want to know, it's because despite the creepiness of you knowing who we are, you insulted Jack first.”

O'Neill just shrugged, “You haven't tried to kill us or butchered the beautiful and in no way nonsensically crazy English language.”

 

“We remain unincarcerated” Teal'c said.

 

“Ooh. OOOH!” Daniel exclaimed “And you haven't tortured us yet! That's a big one. Wait. Who are you anyway.”

 

The alien pulled a tiny silver tube, no bigger than a lipstick applicator out of its pocket, cleared its throat, and pressed a button. Its voice now emanated from the tube in even more of a monotone:

 

“This is the 34,146th time this function has been activated. I am Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged,” the device said flatly, as the alien bowed sarcastically, if such a thing was possible,

 

“Thanks to an accident with an irrational particle accelerator, a pair of rubber bands and a liquid lunch, I'm immortal. Yaaaaaay.”

 

The device paused, played a tinny fanfare, and released a single, limp firework that plopped onto the ground. Before picking up with the audio,

 

“Going to funerals of acquaintances got old after a while, so I decided to keep busy by insulting every living being in the galaxy-alphabetically. Then some idiot named McKay opened a trans-universal bridge so now I have a whole series of universes to insult now. Gives me something to do, but it's become a minor compulsion at this point. I can stop if I want to. Probably.”

 

“Rodney McKay?” Carter asked, as the team waved at Wowbagger, “He's a physicist of some renown back on earth!”

 

“Different McKay,” Wowbagger said, a knowing glint in his eye, “I think this one's name was Meredith. Anyway. You all seem like fairly froody individuals, but I still have to get on with this thing. And then find a way to fix my ship. I generally don't try to land on robots. Crazy tentacle-mouth alien samurai are more my flavor.”

“Not a problem,” Jack said. “We lose one of those every ep-I mean every mission. We replace them out of the Air Force toilet seat budget. Why else would the damn things be so expensive?”

 

“And I can help fix your ship!” Carter said in a cheerful kid-jumping-up-and-down-outside-of-a-candy-store kind of way.

 

“You'd better let her,” Jack said, “She loves new space thingies and she might strain something if you don't let her take a look.”

 

“Fine.” Wowbagger said, “Autotranslating manual's on the left of the pilot's seat. I never read the damn thing, but even if you are Captain-Doctor Carter I doubt you're smart enough to figure it out anyway, you approval hungry-90s boxticked feminist caricature, (I will say you've come a long way from those early insecure missions though,) I doubt you're smart enough to fix it anyway.”

Carter gave him a death glare that would have blown up a sun and started walking over to him. “Listen here you gray-scaled sonofabitch. First you don't read the instruction manual. Then you call me stupid! Now admittedly the reproductive organs bit was a poor choice of catchphrase and-”

Wowbagger ticked his clipboard.

“Oh.” Carter said, stopping in her tracks. “Compulsion. Right. I suppose that's me done then.”

Wowbagger nodded. “You don't want to punch him?” asked Jack.

“Nossir,” Carter replied, hauling a wrench and micrometer out of her vest. “It's SPACEHIP TIME!” and bolted for the hatch.

 

“Incidentally,” said Wowbagger, “Thanks for not shooting guns at me. Those sorta hurt.”

 

“Oh, that's ok,” Daniel piped up, “I'm not hopped up on alien serums right now. Just lots and lots of Benadryl.” He looked down at his feet and muttered, “I suppose you've got to do me now, might as well get it over with.”

 

Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged consulted his clipboard.


“Dr. Daniel Jackson. Um. Lessee, regarded as a fraud for most of your professional career, and can't be vindicated due to the secrecy of the program you enabled, parents dead, wife abducted by a parasite and killed. Ex-girlfriend abducted by a different parasite...” He trailed off as Jackson grew progressively more downcast.

“I've nothing worse than life's already given you. I'd tell you that round glasses look bad and you need to update your look, but Teal'c's probably about to.” The Jaffa nodded solemnly.

 

“Damn. Okay, um. Wow. I feel like a bit of an arse now, honestly.” said Wowbagger, and walked over to pat the archaeologist on the head with a stiff motion, like a housgest interacting with an unknown dog, “There there. Everything's going to be all-right.”

 

 

“DON'T SAY THAT!” All the team members shouted simultaneously, even Carter, from inside the hatch.

 

 

“It just makes things worse.” Daniel murmured quietly, “It was a nice thought though.”

 

“Oh.” Said the alien. “Mars Bar?”

 

“Yeah, ok. Thank you.” Daniel took a bite, and Carter?

 

Carter blew up a small mountain range with an orange beam that shot from the front of the saucer and went “fzzzzzt.” Then the silver craft began to give a slight hum and hover above the ground an inch or two.


As she walked down the ramp, lava started to emerge from the new crater in the distance and flow towards them.

 

“Thanks for fixing the ship.” Wowbagger said to Sam, “What was wrong with it, anyway?”

 

“If you'd bothered to read the instruction manual,” Carter said in a superior tone, “You'd know that the Neutrino Collector needs to be cleaned out every quintillion light years.”

 

“Oh yeah.” he said. “I always forget about that thing.” He looked out at the lava field. “You should all get home before the floor becomes lava for real. Take a break. Maybe try to bore yourself to death with some fishing or something.”

 

 

“You know, fishing isn't as boring as you think it is.” Jack said as Carter quickly stowed her tools and data reader.

 

Wowbagger was amused to see the rest of the team, who were standing behind him, shake their heads vehemently. The Colonel must have noticed something in his expression, and he whipped around before Carter, Daniel and Teal'c could stop their heads from moving.

 

The look of betrayal on his face was delicious. It would keep Wowbagger entertained for weeks.

 

“There's the beer,” said the Colonel, Desperately reaching, “Don't forget the beer. Beer makes everything better.”

 

“I think this is my queue to leave. It's actually been sort of not-terrible. Good luck not dying. Jackson.”


With that, Wowbagger the Infinitely Prolonged spun on his heel, marched back into his ship, and blasted off as SG-1 ran to the gate.

“So,” Daniel huffed, “Do we report this?”

 

Samantha Carter, Captain-by-the-book just shrugged. “Who'd believe us. We'll just say that the planet was unstable and exploded and I'll try not to blow up anything bigger, like a sun or something.”


Labored murmurs of assent were heard, and no-one asked Daniel why he had returned with a Mars Bar wrapper that he hadn't left with, why Carter had a new spaceship design on her computer, or why Teal'c had ditched the eyeshadow.

 

The next time Jack went on leave at his small Montana cabin, he found a gray alien standing on the dock with a six-pack of Quetzalon VII microbrew and a fishing rod.

 

“You know there are no fish in this pond, right Jack?” Wowbagger asked.

 

“That's not the point.” said O'Neill, before accepting a beer and casting his line.