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Author's Chapter Notes: Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to Stargate Atlantis or the characters. If I did Atlantis would be still on the air and Elizabeth back as leader.

Author's note: A huge thank you as always to my beta Sue (Iratus), for her hard work and patience. As always any mistakes are my own.


Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to Stargate Atlantis or the characters. If I did Atlantis would be still on the air and Elizabeth back as leader.

Author's note: A huge thank you as always to my beta Sue (Iratus), for her hard work and patience. As always any mistakes are my own.

Chapter 11

Sheppard and his team strolled into the gateroom, closely followed by Major Lorne and his men. John looking upwards as he heard footsteps on the walkway above him. His lips parted into a smile as he acknowledged Colonel Carter. The smile however didn't reach his eyes, as he though back to earlier. To when he'd first told her of his plan.

Carter's reaction had both surprised and angered him. She had been initially unshakable in her belief that Sheppard's personal involvement, ruled him out of taking any part in the capture of Kolya. The reason. He'd endanger not only himself, but his team as well, by being blinkered to everything else but the need for revenge.

She'd been adamant that Lorne and his team would head the mission accompanied by the rest of Sheppard's team.

Sheppard had been beyond annoyed, he'd been furious. However, it seemed some of Elizabeth's diplomacy had rubbed off on him.

He'd kept a tight rein on his anger. Vocalizing his fury would simply add fuel to the fire, and prove she was right. Instead, he'd calmly pointed out why Carter would be making a mistake, if she stopped him from taking charge of the mission. His main argument being, he and his team had more dealings than any other team. They had a better understanding of how Kolya's thought process worked.

In the end she'd agreed, all be it reluctantly. As he left Carter's office he couldn't help the smirk that spread across his face. Elizabeth, if she were alive, would have been shocked, but pleased with the way he'd manipulated Carter.

However a felling of unease still hung over him. It wouldn't take much for Carter to change her mind, and until they were at the point of no return, he'd remain in edge.

He came back to the present with a bang as he realised Carter was given him an odd look. Aware that he was sloughing he straightened his posture and gave his boss his undivided attention. "Have we a go Ma'am?"

Carter leaned forward, resting her hands on the railing overlooking the gateroom. Sheppard didn't miss the way her eyes narrowed as she looked down upon both teams. He drew in an anxious breath as Carter momentarily hesitated, before finally acknowledging the request with a single nod.

Her words were for her Military Commander alone. "You're clear to head out. However Colonel..."

Sheppard looked at her warily.

"No heroics or unnecessary risk taking."

Sheppard winced. The intense look, along with the clipped tone, were a subtle warning, come home with as much as a scratch and you'll be in big trouble. He groaned. It wasn't enough that he'd Carson to contend with, now he'd Carter as well.

Mind you, he could've told her there was nothing to worry about. Not after the promise he'd made on Spyros. A promise he'd made with unwavering certainty. He wanted and needed revenge, but not at the expense of his own life. That didn't mean he was going to let Kolya walk away unscathed. But he didn't say any of this to Carter. Instead he plastered a smirk on his face. "What… it's not as if I do anything to provoke trouble. It just seems to follow me."

Carter shook her head in disbelief "Colonel Sheppard, you and your team give me more paperwork than all the other teams put together."

He pouted then whined, "That's because we always get the missions where people want to shoot us."

Carter shook her head, why did I accept this position again? "Oh... and Colonel. Don't you think you'd better wait for Commander Radim to make an appearance?"

His eyebrows puckered into a frown, As if I could leave without him. Didn't she know they needed Radim to lead them to his informant?

Chuck's timely interruption however dispersed the need for further discussion.

"It's Commander Radim's IDC, Ma'am."

"Okay Chuck, retract the shield," replied Carter

Within a matter of seconds Radim and his men were standing in the gateroom. The Genii Commander's attention fell firstly on Carter, who was in the process of negotiating the flight of stairs that lead to the gateroom.

Walking up to him, Carter's lips spread into a smile and she held out her hand. "Commander Radim, welcome once again to Atlantis."

Radim grasped her hand in a firm handshake. "Thank you Colonel Carter. I hope I have not delayed you." He turned his head slightly so he could speak with both Carter and Sheppard. "Something came up as I was about to depart. I felt it warranted my attention sooner rather than later."

Ignoring the barely audible grumblings from her second in command, Carter shook her head. "No, your timing couldn't be better. We only finished with the briefing a short while ago and I'm sure Colonel Sheppard has been glad of the extra time to check last minute details.

She turned to her Second in Command who by now stood to her left. "Colonel Sheppard, will you show Commander Radim to the jumper bay."

Before additional distractions could delay them further, Sheppard gave the order for both his team, along with Lorne's, to head immediately for the jumper bay. He then signalled for Radim and his men to follow.

On the way to the jumper bay, Sheppard appeared oblivious to the conversation going on around him. Something far more important occupied his brainpower. The impending mission, and the comprehension that finally, Kolya was going to be his.

A short while later the Jumpers gently dropped down into the gateroom, and after a brief farewell to Carter, they disappeared through the activated stargate.

Both cloaked jumpers arrived on Aragon a short while later.

In the brief time it had taken them to get from Atlantis to Aragon, Sheppard had been aware of an uncomfortable tension in the pit of his stomach. The palms of his hands were sweaty and he'd been incessantly pulling at the collar of his shirt in an attempt to stop it chaffing with the heat.

He sighed. His insides were in turmoil. He'd waited so long for this. Why then, couldn't he shake of this feeling of apprehension? Everything up till now had gone without a hitch. And there lay the true reason for his present misgivings. Everything was flowing along just that bit too calmly, too easily. Unlike like past dealings with Kolya. It was still early though, still plenty of time for things to change, and he'd no doubt it would. It was inevitable.

However whatever happened, Sheppard had no intention of leaving. Not until he'd accomplished what he set out to do. To get the revenge he'd promised. For Elizabeth and for Connor.

After landing in a small valley, they cautiously disembarked from the jumpers. Both teams scanned the area for signs of trouble, leaving Sheppard to question Radim further

"So where do we meet this informant of yours?"

"Not far from our present location. Brackow has given me detailed directions, so it should not take us any longer than ten minutes." Radim answered.

Sheppard gave a sharp nod of his head "Well... what are we waiting for, let's head out. Radim you take point, I'll follow just behind." He turned to Lorne would had now joined them. "Lorne, you and the remainder of your team take the rear, and everyone... keep your eyes peeled. We can't afford the risk of early detection."

They proceeded in silence. John scanned the area as far as his eyes could see. Aragon, it appeared, consisted of rocks and forests with only the occasional shrub. The reason for the jumper's present location. Anywhere else would have given them major problems when landing. Also, they had the added advantage of being near the gate.

A fine mist hung over most of the planet causing a penetrating coldness. The Atlanteans pulled the edges of their collar tight, in an attempt to contain what little warmth their body exuded. No sound could be detected, other than the constant noise of their own footsteps scuffing against the stony track that drew out before them.

Ronon was the first to detect, the faint but distinct sound of twigs cracking underfoot. "Sheppard!"

Sheppard nodded "I heard it. His hand fell to his side, ready to reach for his gun if the need arose. He knew the others did likewise. The hairs on his neck rose further, as a man stepped out from behind a clump of trees, just a few feet in front of them. His height almost equalled Ronon's. Sheppard glanced to his left as he heard movement, not surprised to find the Satedan taking a protective stance between him and the newcomer.

Radim however, without any signs of reservation, strode forward until he stood face to face with the stranger. The two men shook hands, before embracing.

"Brackow, how have you been? You're looking well. Your family asked me to tell you, they have missed you." Radim turned to Sheppard with a smile. "Colonel this is Luan Brackow, the soldier I spoke to you off. He will be able to tell you anything you wish to know regarding Kolya, and his present location. I vouch for both his integrity and loyalty."

Brackow, if aware of the mistrust shown by the Atlanteans, ignored it. Instead he returned Radim's smile. "Commander Radim, it is good to see you again. It has been quite some time."

As the two Genii' soldiers updated one another, Sheppard took the time to scrutinise Brackow. The Genii soldier appeared to be confident, but more importantly, Sheppard couldn't detect any deceitfulness in his manner. However, previous experiences had shown him that appearances can be deceptive.

So, although on the surface, Sheppard appeared to be relaxed, anyone looking close enough would notice the tension in his muscles, the rigidity of his posture. Whilst his left hand relinquished its grip on his gun, his finger tips continued to caress its surface. His eyes too were constantly on the move, watchful for any signs of an ambush.

He knew he wasn't the only one reacting in this manner. He could almost feel the tension oozing from Ronon, who remained vigilant at Sheppard's side. From past experiences he deduced the Satedan's fingers were itching at the trigger.

Despite all this, Sheppard appreciated they'd no option. To guarantee success they had to take a chance with Brackow. Only he could divulge the information needed to secure Kolya.

On hearing the mention his own name Sheppard's attention returned sharply to the two Genii soldiers. "Well once this matter has been dealt with, your work here will be done. I am sure Colonel Sheppard..." Radim glanced fleetingly towards Sheppard, "will find no objection, if you wish to return with us."

Sheppard glared in disapproval. What was Radim playing at? He could just see Carter's face if he walked out from the jumper, with Brackow in tow. No security clearance, nothing, only Radim's word that Brackow could be trusted. On the other hand... if say... Brackow did deliver what he promised and helped get rid of Kolya, maybe... just maybe, Carter could be coaxed.

So instead of responding with the retort he'd intended, Sheppard stepped forward and accepted the hand of the Genii soldier.

Brackow spoke first. "Colonel Sheppard, Radim has explained your need to track down and confront Commander Kolya. He has also explained the reason why. For a long time now I have suspected Acastus Kolya of overstepping the boundary of humanity. If you will accept my assistance, then together I believe we can rid the galaxy of the evil his presence exudes."

After answering the Genii with a curt nod, Sheppard cocked his head in the direction of what appeared to be a large cluster of dwellings. It was hard to tell for sure from this distance. "Would that happen to be the village?"

That is where Minister Tinselly resides and is the only village to exist on Aragon. Kolya however, is residing for the duration of his stay in alternative accommodation. That in its self will likely work to our advantage. Due to the remoteness of the site allocated to Kolya, the villagers are not inclined to venture anywhere near it. Therefore it is highly unlikely they will become involved in your confrontation with Kolya."

"I hope so, our fight isn't with these people," replied Sheppard. Murmurs of agreement came from behind Sheppard.

"Has Kolya shown any signs of increased activity today?" asked Teyla.

Sheppard raised his left eyebrow unaware, until now, that Teyla had come to stand on his opposite side.

"No" Brackow's eyebrows creased into a frown "Though... I feel you have made a wise decision in not delaying. Even by one day. Negotiations between Kolya, and Minister Tinselly, do not appear to be progressing as well as initially predicted. The reason for this I have not heard

Sheppard's eyes darkened, there's no way he's getting away. Not this time. "We need to get this done. Now!"

"We're going to be able to do that from here... how?" grumbled McKay.

"There is a reason for meeting you here, rather than somewhere nearer," replied Brackow, ignoring McKay's irritation. "Here you will find the quickest and most direct route to Kolya. One that also ensures you will remain a safe distance from the village. To go by any other, would have greatly reduced your chances of remaining undetected. Unfortunately, as much as I'd like to be a part of your attacking force, and to see the shock on Kolya's face, I'm afraid I cannot. I will need to return to the village soon. Before my absence is detected. I feel I will be of greater value to you there anyway. It will give me the chance to hear first hand of any changes to Kolya's plans. Although it will not be easy, I can try and find a way of getting this information to you."

The lines on Sheppard's forehead deepened as an idea came to him. "Lorne, do you still have that spare radio."

"Yes I do. I thought Commander Radim may need it."

Sheppard shook his head, "No. Teyla saw to that earlier." He turned to the Athosian with a grin. Teyla was always one step ahead of them. He returned his attention to Brackow. "You could keep in contact by radio. Make things a lot easier."

Brackow grinned, "A perfect solution." A frown replaced his previous smile. "If I can decipher how it works."

"That's the easy part," Sheppard smirked. "Lorne will give you a demonstration."

Lorne came forward with the radio and a few minutes were spent showing Brackow how to operate it. When he felt confident with how it operated, Brackow secured it in an inner pocket, ensuring its invisibility from prying eyes.

McKay rolled his eyes and sighed impatiently "Okay now we've got that out the way, do you think you can show us this great route you've planned. At this rate I wouldn't be surprised if we find Kolya is long gone."

Sheppard sighed, but kept his mouth shut. He realised it was just McKay's way of displaying his anxiety. Also he did have a point. They couldn't afford to waste any more time. "Anything else we need to sort out, can be discussed whilst we walk.

After nodding his agreement Brackow lifted his hand. "Come I will show you the route."

He headed up a steep incline, his long legs tackling the troublesome boulders that were scattered around with agility that none of the others, apart from Ronon, appeared gifted with.

"Oh... and how do you suppose we're ever going to be able to move quickly, when these infernal stones keep hampering us every step we take," glowered McKay.

Brackow merely raised an eyebrow, before replying calmly. "The ground gets easier on the foot as we get closer to the village. There is much more vegetation and fewer boulders and rocks."

"I hope you're right because at this rate I'm going to need new boots... Ouch..." McKay hopped about holding one of his legs, having kicked one of the offending boulders in a moment of lost concentration. "See... what did I tell you... I'm going to be crippled."

The rest of them looked at McKay with a mixture of exasperation and amusement.

"McKay... we could always leave you behind," Sheppard warned.

Opening his mouth to retaliate, McKay saw the glint in Sheppard's eyes and quickly changed his mind.

It was a relief for everyone, when Brackow eventually came to a halt beside a crumbling stone wall. And true to Brackow's words instead of the annoying stones, a large rectangular field lay ahead of them, dotted with an overgrown purple shrub.

It was towards the far end of this field that Brackow pointed. "If you look to the bottom of the field, you will see it is bordered by a forest of thickset trees. That is where we are headed. The trees encircle all but one side of the dwelling where Kolya is residing. Unfortunately this is where the risk of discovery will be the greatest. For not only is it without the cover of the trees, it is also where Kolya's men travel to and from the village. It will be necessary to guard this track closely, whilst also taking care to avoid detection. It is also the track I will travel along when I leave you, to return to the village."

Lorne looked at him a puzzled question on his face "Won't they question why you are walking along an almost deserted track,"

Brackow shook his head firmly "I frequent it at least daily, delivering messages. Sometimes it can be as much as three or four times in the one day. It depends on the flow of communication between the Minister and Kolya. " He turned his head to the side until he had Sheppard in his vision. "It will give me the chance to detect how many of Kolya's men are out with the confines of their present location." He patted his chest where the radio was hidden. "It may also give me the chance to get acquainted with this here device at the same time."

The teams spoke in hushed whispers, painstakingly made their way through the overgrown alien plant life. McKay almost drove everyone to despair. He constantly moaned of how the strange plant was being detrimental to his health, or exacerbates his allergies. For the most part however they managed to ignore him.

A direct line across the field to the trees would have proven extremely difficult if it weren't for Ronon and Brackow. The depth of the shrub exceeded everyone's height by far, with the exception of the tall Satedan and Genii. It was their directions everyone relied on.

Sheppard for the most of it, although alert as always, was immersed in his own thoughts. What would happen when he'd gotten what he came for? Would he really find the peace he so desperately sought? At least he'd get retribution for Elizabeth. First though, they needed this to succeed, and to do so, they needed to ensure Kolya was apprehended, or killed if necessity called for it. He'd given his word to Carter that Kolya would be captured alive if possible. However, if at any time it looked like Kolya was about to skip through the net, then he wouldn't hesitate in firing the shot, fatal or otherwise.

He'd been aware of Ronon's subtle glances. It wasn't exactly a surprise therefore when he heard the Satedan's voice.

"Kolya won't get away Sheppard. Not this time."

Sheppard didn't reply, he knew Ronon didn't expect him to.

They reached the dense forest not long after, and edged their way through in silence. Even McKay whining had ceased, silenced by the eerie stillness that hung over the forest. Sheppard eventually signalled with his hand for them to halt. The trees had thinned out slightly and he crouched down to observe the lay of the land. About twenty feet in front of them stood the small holding, and hopefully Kolya.

Brackow came to crouch beside Sheppard. "If you look over to the left you will see the roof of one building. However there is another, just slightly in front and to the side of this one. The one presently hidden from view is where you will find Kolya. He has men patrolling the area. Whether he truly fears an ambush, or it is simply routine is hard to tell."

"Whatever the reason, we'll need to deal with them first." Sheppard paused again to scrutinize the land. He'd hoped the buildings would be nearer. They'd need to get closer and without being detected.

"Colonel Sheppard I am afraid this is where I must leave you," Brackow said.

Sheppard nodded, gratitude evident in his eyes "Thanks for your help and if you do need a lift you'll be more than welcome."

The initial misgivings Sheppard had felt for Brackow were gradually fading. He'd come to the realization that placing trust in this man may not be a bad thing after all.

"I may take you up on that offer Colonel. I hope everything goes as planned, and that Kolya reign of terror will come to an end, once and for all. I will be in touch if I hear anything you need to know."

After Brackow left, Sheppard issued orders to everyone. They'd precede one team at a time, and hopefully reduce the risk of their movements being detected.

Lorne and his men would be taking up positions along the side of the track that had very little camouflage. There were however less men in his team and once in position they'd have a clear view of the track it's self.

Radim and his men were to take up position to the side of the building and report any movement from the guards patrolling the ground.

Sheppard's team would be taking the greatest risk. They would be observing the front of the building. They were also going to attempt to get to the second building, where they could take cover, but still have the added advantage of being able to observe the Genii whilst close by. Sheppard hoped that from this position they'd get a glimpse of Kolya.

Getting from where they were to their designated observation points however, proved to be painstakingly slow. They had to crawl most of the way, to avoid detection. Finally though, they were in position.

Sheppard and his team lay on their stomachs, scrutinizing the Genii camp. The second building certainly looked like it would provide an advantage for them. First though, they had to get there, and not before immobilizing the security detail.

"Once we've taken care of the guards, we'll need to somehow draw the rest of them into the open," John whispered.

"With What?" Ronon queried.

Sheppard shrugged his shoulders." I don't know... Thought you'd have something up your sleeve."

"Well... we could just shoot them all," replied Ronon, his eyes demonstrating he wasn't been flippant.

Sheppard's eyebrows shot up and he released an exasperated groan, "May be Teyla or even McKay, will have a better idea.

""How do we get rid of the guards," asked Rodney, his eyebrows creased in a worried frown.

"Don't fret McKay, I think that is something for Teyla and Ronon." replied Sheppard.

Ronon grinned, and Teyla gave a nod of acceptance.

"It is best if we go now. I have been observing them closely and they appear to be quite relaxed," said Teyla. "I feel they will not expect us."

"Okay, but be careful. We need you in one piece. When they've been taken care of, check out the building. If everything looks okay, signal to McKay and myself. We'll then join you."

Teyla and Ronon left leaving Sheppard alone with McKay. Sheppard contacted Lorne first, then Radim. They didn't have anything to report and Lorne told him so far there didn't appear to be any sign of activity on the section of track they could see.

Sheppard had only just hung up on Radim when his radio bleeped. He frowned, why's Brackow calling so soon? It couldn't be much more than a half an hour since he left.

Sheppard flipped the switch and waited for Brackow to speak. If Brackow had been compromised he didn't want to give anything away.

When Brackow spoke, there was marked agitation in his voice. "Colonel Sheppard I have just spoken with some of Kolya's men. They'll be near your location soon. One of them told me they have been recalled back to camp. It seems the minister paid Kolya a visit earlier this morning. By the time he left, the alliance had broken down irreparably.

"If the minister has called a halt to the talks... why would the Genii discuss this with you?"

"Their tongues are loosened with alcohol and I think secretly, they are relieved. Many of them are restless and wanted only to be on their way."

"Why now though... just as we arrive." The lines on Sheppard's forehead deepened into a frown of suspicion "Something doesn't sit right with me."

"I assure you Colonel they remain unaware of your presence. They were boasting about their illicit dealings and how many of the worlds they'd visited, feared them. I imagine the Minister has gotten wind of this. He is a fair leader and does not believe that one world should seek to rule another. If he has found out about Kolya treatment of previous allies, he will not allow him and his men to remain.

"Okay, if what they've told you is true, we can make it work to our advantage."

"Do you want me to return and assist you," Brackow asked.

"No, it's best if you confirm what you've heard with the minister. And Brackow, try to deter anyone who suddenly take a notion for kicking Kolya and his men of the planet. As I said earlier, my fight isn't with them, but inevitably some of them will be injured... or worse... if they get mixed up in the conflict."

His conversation with Brackow at an end, Sheppard once again updated Lorne, and Radim. Lorne would take care of the returning Genii allowing Sheppard to continue with his original plan.

He noticed a couple of the guards were already missing from their look out points. With only a few guards left, it shouldn't take Ronon and Teyla long to dispose of the remaining ones. For the time being he and McKay waited for their signal.

However it took Ronon and Teyla longer than Sheppard anticipated. Sheppard felt a knot of anxiety building up in his stomach, and the more time that passed, the bigger it became. Eventually he'd had enough and reached for his radio, ignoring McKay comments about how it was his idea to maintain radio silence.

Just as Sheppard went to activate it, McKay thrust an elbow into his side. He turned to glare at the astrophysicist "What the hell McKay!"

McKay remained oblivious to the glare, his attention instead, focused in something else. "Look... I take it that's them?"

Looking in the direction McKay pointed, Sheppard let out an instant sigh of relief. Teyla stood signalling to them, only to be joined by Ronon a few seconds later.

Sheppard glanced at McKay and smirked "Are you ready for this?"

"Sure... I'm always prepared to get my butt blown off," McKay grumbled.

"I've been telling you for ages your brains are up your arse, McKay."

"What... He spluttered. That's not what I meant. Can we just get this done, like yesterday?"

The two men edged forward, whilst remaining alert for any sign of the Genii. Finally they were within a couple of feet of the court yard. Hiding behind what appeared to be a large bale of foul smelling hay, they discovered both buildings to be only a short distance in front of them. They'd only one problem. Getting to Ronon and Teyla, without being seen.

"Now seems as good a chance as ever," whispered Sheppard. "There doesn't seem to be any of Kolya's men lurking about. Thankfully neither did the building, that housed Kolya and his men, have anything that resembled a window.

Luck unfortunately didn't appear to be on Sheppard's side. At the same time the two men stepped from behind the hay, so too did a group of Genii, step out from the doorway. For a moment both sides froze. Sheppard the first to react, pushed McKay roughly back behind the safety of the hay bale.

"Oh heck, how'd I guess this would happen," groaned Sheppard as he joined McKay,

He'd just time to radio Lorne before all hell broke loose.

The Genii started firing at them which caused Ronon and Teyla to return fire. For a few moments it looked like Sheppard and McKay were sitting ducks. They vainly fought of the Genii, who were fortunate enough to escape injury from Ronon or Teyla's gun.

Recognising voices behind him, Sheppard didn't try and hide his sigh of relief. Both Lorne and Radim had joined them.

Although the Genii outnumbered the Atlantean's it appeared they weren't as well armed. Within a surprisingly short time the Atlanteans had gained the upper hand.

Sheppard noticed the last of the Genii were attempting to retreat back into the confines of building they'd not long left. Recognising Sheppard's hand signals, Lorne's men quickly cut them off.

Although caught in the midst of the battle Sheppard remained vigilant for any sign of Kolya. He'd thought he caught a glimpse of him earlier, but had been prevented from checking it out by a couple of Genii who had been set on taking Sheppard down. By the time he's successfully disillusioned them, there seemed to be no sign Kolya once again.

Momentarily distracted by his need to find Kolya, Sheppard didn't notice the Genii rise from behind the remains of an old trailer. He turned his head in surprise as heard Ronon shout out to him. At first he didn't feel the burning in his side, nor the blood seeping through from just below his tac vest. It was as he felt himself being thrown to the ground that the pain struck.

Disoriented, he struggled for breath, whilst at the same time trying to ward of the threatening darkness. Gritting his teeth he forced himself to look up, although still pinned to the ground by something big and heavy.

As his vision cleared his eyes faltered on the eyes of another. Eyes that sneered back at him but at the same time appeared smug. Kolya's eyes. Sheppard's voice betrayed him as Kolya turned and walked passed him, his footsteps gradually becoming fainter as this distance between them grew larger until they were no more.

Sheppard heard shots fired from somewhere above him, but not in the direction he hoped. He tried to speak, to shout, but his lungs were fit for bursting. Then it was over. The weight gone and much needed air rushed into his lungs causing him to gulp a breath greedily.

"Sheppard, you okay."

Although his ears were ringing Sheppard could still here the concern in McKay's voice. Clutching at his side he managed to roll on to his back and recognised the identity of his attacker, Ronon.

"What the hell?" As he struggled to sit up, the pain in his side intensified and he looked down to see the blood stain growing. Okay... it wasn't just Carson that would kill him this time. Carter would have a shot at it herself.

"My god Sheppard why is it always you that ends up with a bullet." said Rodney. "If it hadn't been for goliath here you'd be a lot worse off."

Despite McKay's grumbling, Sheppard could see the worry and concern in his friend's eyes.

Understanding dawned on him. Obviously aware of what was about to happen, Ronon had shielded him whilst taking out the culprit. The shots he'd heard had come from Ronon's gun. His gut somersaulted, he come that close to not making it back, to leaving Connor without any of his parents then he remembered the reason for this. Kolya. Kolya is escaping, He needed to stop him.

He looked around desperately. Although most of the action had diminished, with the remainder of the Genii' surrendering, there was no sign of Kolya. "Kolya, where's Kolya."

By now Teyla too had joined them. They frantically scanned the area for Kolya, and just when they thought they'd lost him, Teyla spotted him.

"He's headed for the trees, just over there." She pointed out to where Kolya could be clearly seen making a bee line for the trees.

Unfortunately his escape route appeared to be a mere few feet in front of him. Even if they managed to get a clear shot, the distance had become too great.

Sheppard immediately grabbed his gun, ignoring the throbbing in his side.

"John you can't go, your bleeding. Let Ronon and I go after him," pleaded Teyla

""I need to do this. Alone"

Sheppard, became angered when he felt a strong grip on his shoulder. He furiously shrugged it off.

"Easy Sheppard. Teyla's right," replied Ronon.

Sheppard gave Ronon a cold hard look. "I've fought with much worse than a simple flesh wound. Now let go. You're wasting valuable time"

"Sheppard, okay... take the risk if that's what you want, but at least let us come with you," pleaded McKay. "We're all in it, and have been from the very start. We all want this... for Elizabeth. Any road." He glowered slightly, "If you think I'm going back to face Sam alone, you can think again fly boy. Have you seen how scary she gets when she's mad?"

Teyla laid a hand on his back "If you must go, at least let my try and contain the bleeding."

Sheppard sighed as he took in the grim determination on the faces of his friends. He knew Teyla was right. He'd struggle if the bleeding continued as it was. Hopefully with a bit of pressure applied, it would slow it down until he'd dealt with Kolya. Dealing with Carson afterwards would be fun, but what the hell.

He looked at Teyla and nodded, "Okay do what you need to do, but make it quick. He's not slipping through our fingers a second time."


Chapter End Notes: What to know what happens next, well go ahead push that button. Because the more reviews the happier the plot bunnies are and the harder they'll work. Don't leave it until later you know you'll only forget. And as always thanks for reading.

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