Myths of Avalon VI


Author: Nu-klear <nu_klear[at]>

Category: Crossover

Rating: PG-13

Keywords: None

Legalese: All characters with their respective rights, properties, and copyrights are the property of their respective creators, authors, owners, producers, and agencies. These characters are used without permission. No copyright infringement is intended or meant, and no money will be made from this story. This story may be copied in its entirety, and may be distributed as long as all copyright information remains.

A/N: I would like to thank Kyle for his help on this one.

Summery: How to kill time while trapped in space in a fighter that's over 10,000 years old and a wingman that is nearly as old.

Dragan sighed as the rest of Angel Flight vanished into the distance on their way back to Earth to trash some left over Goa'uld. Shaking his head he watched the earth slowly coming into view. "Well this is gonna be a long trip but at least there's nice scenery..."

"You say something, kid?"

Dragan scowled both because he had forgotten his comm was on and at being referred to as a kid. "Not really; just commenting on the scenery, Angel Three."

"Yeah, it sure is beautiful out here." Colonel Austin chuckled. "Given the situation I think we can forego the call signs. You can just call me Steve."

"Whatever you say, Angel." Dragan sighed and rolled his eyes "Steve."

"That's better," Austin glanced on the side of the canopy at the other fighter keeping pace beside him and chuckled. "The way I see it, kid, we can either sit here silently going stir crazy or we can talk, and seeing as I've never been a big fan of sitting around doing nothing. I vote for talking."

"Whatever you say," Dragan said as he checked his instruments. "It's not like either of us are going anywhere for awhile."

"That about sums it up." Austin said with a chuckle. "So, what kind of name is Dragan?"

"Slavic, actually; but it's not my real name." Dragan said absently as he studied what he could see of the surface of the moon. "One of my employers stuck me with it so no one would realize who I was. It wouldn't have been good for his reputation to be associated with me."

"Employers.?" Austin frowned. "Aren't you part of that 'Knighthood' that Harris was talking about?"

"What?" Dragan asked incredulously, then began to chuckle. "What in the hell gave you that idea?"

"Well for starters, you seem to know a lot more about what was going on then the rest of us." Austin began in a confused and annoyed tone. "You weren't very surprised by the kind of tech Xander had access to or by Avalon for that matter. Not to mention that your 'little friend' and Merlin knew each other, or your reaction to finding out about Teal'c. What else would you believe?"

Dragan thought about it a moment then nodded "Okay, I see where you would think that. but that doesn't mean its right."

"Okay," Austin rolled his eyes in amusement, "so how did you get into this mess then?"

"I'm just paying off some debts, trying to get on Harris' good side," Dragan shrugged. "And making sure those snakeheads stay off my planet and out of my life."

"Your planet." Austin's amusement was clear in his voice. "A little full of ourselves, aren't we? Last I heard there were five billion humans living there."

"Yeah," Dragan snorted in amusement, "I really should get the place fumigated."

If looks could kill, Dragan's fighter would have been a hunk of burning debris. "That wasn't very funny, kid."

"If you say so." Dragan trailed off as he realized how he must have sounded to his wingman, shook his head and sighed wearily. "Sorry if I offended you, Steve. I guess I've just seen way too much of the dark side of human nature to believe any one of them would pick the light on their own anymore."

Austin was silent for a long moment as he thought over what Dragan had said. "Hell kid, anyone in this line of work would get jaded after a while. Want to talk about it?"

"I don't think so, Steve." Dragan's voice sounded much older than Steve thought it had any right to be. "Unless you like the idea of almost never sleeping more then three hours without waking up with cold sweats or jumping out of your skin and pulling a weapon at any unexpected noise."

"Ah, come on, kid." Austin said as he looked at his bionic hand. "I bet I've heard or even seen worse, myself."

"I really doubt that, Steve;" Dragan chuckled. "I have seen things that would make most people curl up in fear and die. I've seen things that *you've* only seen in your nightmares, spit in their eye or at least whatever passed for it anyway, and lived to tell about it."

"Okay," Steve's disbelief and amusement at what he obviously thought was an empty boast was coming through clearly over the radio, "tell me about one of them."

"Okay, since you are so interested in my past, I'll make you a deal; I'll trade you secret for secret, answer for answer and story for story." Dragan felt his lips curl into a cruel smile at the challenge. "However, I will only tell you a secret equal to the one you tell me, Steve, so you go first and please don't make stuff up."

"This is kind of childish, don't ya think?" Austin asked in amusement.

"Steve," Dragan's voice was filled with amusement, "if you were in my place, would you be willing to give an OSI operative info freely without reservation or restrictions, even if they are your wingman?"

Steve was silent for a long moment before answering, this time with a voice filled with caution. "I guess not. what insurances do I have that you will answer, and answer truthfully?"

"Only my word; I swear that I will tell the truth, and not reveal any of your secrets so long as you keep mine." Dragan said in serious tone. "I have never willingly broken my word and that is a fact that Merlin can confirm, along with the truthfulness of many of my secrets if you feel my word is insufficient."

Steve was silent for a several moments before speaking. "I'll have to pass; most of my secrets are matters of national security, and I can't and won't violate my oath."

"Okay, if that's the way you want it, Steve." Dragan's grin could be clearly heard over the radio. "What would you like to know?"

"You can't be serious, kid?" Steve asked in disbelief.

"Yes I am; if you had agreed to tell me your secrets, I would know I couldn't trust you with mine." Dragan said with a chuckle. "Now at least I know you're somewhat trustworthy, so as long as you give me your word, I'll trust you to keep them. It's funny really; you're the first person to ever get past that one."

"You're nuts, kid!" Steve stared out his window at the other man's fighter in disbelief. "You're absolutely certifiable, you know that?"

"Maybe I am," Dragan laughed lightly, "then again maybe not. Either way, does it really matter? We've spent the last month fighting off an alien invasion with ten thousand year old fighters left over from the fall of how does anyone know what's insane anymore?"

"I was talking about your reasoning," Austin said in a huff. "Just because someone won't betray their country doesn't mean they will keep their word to you or keep your secrets."

"You're right," Dragan smirked, "but it does show that they can keep their word and it got us talking about another subject, didn't it?"

"Huh?" Steve blinked, as his mind shifted gears and then started chuckling. "Okay, you got me there, kid."

"Why do you keep calling me, kid?" Dragan asked in annoyance.

"Well compared to me, you probably are." Steve said nonchalantly "You're what, in your mid-twenties?"

"Sorry to tell you this but you not even close." Dragan snorted in amusement.

"So what, you're saying you're in your teens?" Steve frowned.

"Wrong direction," Dragan said with an amused smile. "I look a lot younger then I am."

"That sounds familiar," Steve said as he chuckled. "You absolutely sure you and Harris aren't from the same group?"

"Smartass! Yes, I am." Dragan shook his head at the irony of the situation. "*Very* sure."

<Guess I touched a nerve.> Steve considered the slight hesitation in Dragan's response, finally deciding to push for at least one straight answer. "Alright, I give, how old are you?

"Over ten thousand years," Dragan said with a shrug. "I don't know exactly, cause I quit keeping count when I was about two thousand."

"Yeah, right.!" Austin said with a chuckle.

"Hey, if you didn't want to know you shouldn't have asked." Dragan's smirk came through clearly over the comm. "It's not like I had to answer you!"

"You're serious?!" Steve asked in disbelief. "Now I know you're crazy! It's impossible for a human to live that long!"

"Wanna bet?" Dragan chuckled. "Anyway, what has that go to do with how old I am?"

'So, what, you're saying is that you're not human?" Steve said in a confused tone.

"Sorry, Steve," Dragan's amusement came through clearly over the radio, "but I'm afraid I'm gonna have to plead the fifth."

"Now who's being the smartass?" Steve shook his head and gave a pained sighed. "Then what are you?"

"Ah, ah, ah.! I've answered one of your questions, now it's your turn. " Dragan admonished good naturedly. "Let's see. I know, do you have a digital clock?"

"Huh?" Steve blinked in confusion at the absurdity of the question. "Yeah, my alarm clock I use back home is digital."

"No," Dragan sighed in amused annoyance. "I meant do you have a digital clock. installed, if you know what I mean?"

<What did Rudy do, take out a full page ad in Weirdoes Weekly? What is the point of something being classified if everybody and their twin sister knows about it!> Steve was silent for several moments before answering. "You know, that has to be the most asinine question anyone has ever asked me!"

"Is that a no?" Dragan asked his voice perfectly innocent.

Steve shook his head. "I'm not even gonna dignify that with a response!"

"Hey, I told you my age," Dragan said indignant tone, "and I didn't ask anything even close to violating your oath."

"For one thing, I fail to see what that has to do with anything;" Steve growled, "and for another it has to be the stupidest question anyone every asked me!"

"Fine," Dragan snickered. "Would you rather I had asked if all of your lower limbs are artificial?"

Steve sputtered unintelligently for several moments before he could to respond. "Fine, yes I have a digital clock; are you happy now? Good; and if you even *think* of asking me the other question you might just find out if my weapons are down or not."

"Okay, grouchy," Dragan chuckled, "it's your turn."

"How do you know so much about their tech, if you're not part of this Knighthood?"

"No big deal," Dragan shrugged. "When I was a kid this kind of tech was all over the place. Hell, I knew how to use several light hand weapons before I could dress myself properly."

Austin raised an eyebrow amusement. "Grew up in a rough neighborhood, did we?"

"Not really," Drag snorted and shook his head. "For most of my 'childhood' Earth was little more than a war zone. So basically if you wanted to survive you had the choice of fighting, running, or hiding and I have always been very good at surviving."

"And you don't think of that as rough?" Austin asked with a frown.

"Not when compared to some of the places I've been..." Dragan chuckled. "So, what were you doing, before whatever happened to get you involved in this mess?

"Spending a weekend with my wife actually," Austin's wistful smile came through clearly over the radio, and the next few moments past in silence. "So, what about you; what were you up to when you got pulled into this?"

"Actually," Dragan's voice was strained as memories of the contents of the file he had been reviewing and updating in preparation for the *mission* he had had to hand off to the Hunt so that he could be here, played out in his mind. "I was just going over some paperwork when Herc called me about this."

"That sucks!" Austin picked up on his wingman's stress, read between the lines and decided to follow that line of questioning in hopes of finding out a bit more about Dragan. "What kind of paperwork?"

"Hey, we've been over this, I answered your question; now you can just hold your horses, it's my turn." Dragan quickly objected, mentally cursing as he racked his brain for a question that would make Austin forget his question. Finally he settled on gambling on a topic that if he was correct should have the desired results. "So, do you have any kids, Steve?"

"Yes, I do. Michael was in the Air Force Academy until he was in a crash a few years ago. After he recovered from. the accident and completed his physical therapy he was offered an opportunity to work for OSI. " Steve said with a smile his fatherly pride bubbling to the surface, even though he reminded that Dragan was trying to distract him. "What about you, you have any kids?"

"Yeah, I do." Dragan said distractedly as he silently thanked whatever deity that was listening that Steve was a typical human parent.

"You do?" Steve said as he blinked in surprise. "I wouldn't think that you and Cles would be compatible..."

"Whoa, back it up a minute, buddy." Dragan's nervous voice quickly cut him off. "I said I have kids, I didn't say that Cles and I have kids! Cles and I have only been 'together' for about half a year and only really been 'mates' for the last couple of months of that. Even if I wasn't taking precautions that would be way too soon to *even*think of having kids!"

"You take precautions.? That's not what I heard from Warbird, they told me about the, ah, 'memory lapse' with your flight suit; Palmer said that it was quite clear that you 'don't swim with a raincoat' so to speak." Austin smirked sadly at the memory of the fallen flyer and then chuckled at the shocked sputtering coming over the line. After a moment Steve found his curiosity piqued by Dragan's reaction to his assumption that he and Cles had children. "Anyway, why would it be too soon for you two to have kids or. is it something about *her* having your kids?"

Steve's eyebrows went up as his Hammerhead's warning systems came to life, buzzing out in warning of a lock on his fighter for an eternity of a split second before going silent. After a moment of silence his wingman's voice came over the radio thick with emotion. "Steve, do *NOT* insinuate anything like that again. I have known Cles, both as a friend and then as more than a friend, for over a century; and I would nearly guarantee that she will make a wonderful parent!"

"Then what's the problem, Dragan?" Steve asked his wingman cautiously after silently debating the sanity of continuing the current line of discussion with his curiosity and losing. "If you know she will make a good parent and you care for each other. why not?"

"Not that it's any of your business, Steve," Dragan growled belligerently, "but I'd like the relationship I have with Cles to last quite a while."

"Okay, you lost me." Steve looked over at his wingman's Hammerhead with a confused expression.

"It's quite simple, Steve," Dragan sighed and rolled his eyes "I've never had a 'normal relationship' last more than two years after the birth of a child. I have no 'earthly' idea of why it happens but it always does! So you'll have to excuse me, if after be Cles' friend for as long as I have been, I would prefer to have a romantic relationship with her last longer than a two or three years."

"You know, that would have to be the lamest excuse I have ever heard for not wanting to have kids." Steve shook his head "Just because a few of them left you..."

"First off, not all of them left, some of them died," Dragan said curtly. "And secondly, I do not count more than a hundred different mates as a few!"

"Over a hundred." Steve shook his head and snorted in disbelief. "Right. So what happens?"

"You name it and it's happened. and with that it is now my turn to ask a question." Dragan said with an air of finality. "How did you meet your wife?"

"At a charity tennis event of all things," Steve said with a chuckle. "First time I met a woman that wasn't overawed by the fact that I was an astronaut."

"That's always a plus in a potential mate," Dragan snorted in amusement. "Trust me, when I say that I know where you're coming from, those 'groupie' types get old fast really fast."

"Just what are you trying to imply?" Steve asked indignantly.

"I wasn't implying anything about anyone, I was just stating a simple fact," Dragan stated defensively "having groupies may be fun at first but they quickly begin to grate on your nerves! Now if you're through beating your chest it's my turn."

"*Humph* you don't seem the type that would have groupies..." Steve muttered, trailing off and frowning as what Dragan had said registered. "Hey, wait a minute, it's my turn! You just asked how I met my wife."

"Yeah, and then you asked what I was implying." Dragan pointed out sarcastically.

"Hey, that doesn't count and you know it!" Steve growled "Otherwise we've both been getting a lot of free questions!"

"Fine, it's your turn," Dragan rolled his eyes and sighed, "just hurry up."

"What is the story between you and Harris? I mean, you said that one of the reasons you were here was to get on his good side; so why do would you want to be on Harris' good side?" Steve asked after a few moments of thought.

"I'm pretty sure you wouldn't want to hear most of the answer to that, Steve." Dragan finally answered "Even if it was any of your business."

"Okay." Steve frowned at the at his wingman's Hammerhead. "Why not?"

"Well, for three reasons, Steve," Dragan finally said, his voice almost void of emotion. "First off, it's because I can almost guarantee that if I answered that question you would not feel so comfortable about being alone up here with me. Secondly, it's none of your business because it's either personal or it's between me and the Knighthood, so it doesn't really concern you. And finally, because I find it hard to believe someone with a record like yours couldn't understand why anyone would want to be on the good side of someone with as much power as Harris now has."

"In other words, you're not going to tell me." Steve shook his head and glared at his wingman's fighter. "You know I'm beginning to think you need a good swift kick in the ass."

"You're not the first person to say it or try it, Steve." Dragan shook his head and chuckled. "However, I would like to suggest that you wait until after we get back to Earth before trying it. cause I just know Harris would make me clean you out of the inside of that cockpit."

"Real funny, kid," Steve grumbled. "Keep it up and I just might have to take you down a peg or two when we get back to base!"

Dragan shrugged. "Whatever turns your crank, Steve."

Austin frowned and shook his head. "You mind if I ask you a question, kid?"

Dragan snorted in amusement. "Seeing as you just did, it wouldn't matter if I did."

"Alright, smart ass," Austin rolled his eyes. "What do you got against the rest of us?"

Dragan blinked, his face going blank. "Huh?"

"You never hang out with the rest of us; we've been on Avalon nearly a month and the only time you seem to interact with anyone is on missions or at briefings. Hell, I can count the number of times you've even spoken to me outside a fighter on one hand." Austin shrugged. "Can't help wondering what the problem is."

Dragan was silent for a moment as he thought over his wingman's statement; sighing, he decided he should give the other man an explanation. "I don't like letting people get to close to me. Especially if I'm not sure how long they're gonna be allies."

Austin frowned and looked over at the other fighter with an annoyed expression. "What do you mean by that?"

"Give me a break, Steve. You can't honestly tell me that you think this battle will end once the Goa'uld are gone?" Dragan chuckled dryly. "Once they're no longer an immediate threat, every government on the planet is gonna do everything in their power to get their hands on Avalon or make sure no one else does."

<Just my luck, I get to have a conspiracy nut as a wingman.> Austin snorted. "Look, contrary to what you may have seen on TV and the movies, the government is not out to get everyone!"

<Man, I wish I could be that na<ve.> Dragan thought as he smiled and shook his head. "So it would surprise you if SG1 tried to get Xander to let them bring some military pilots to Avalon?"

"No," Austin said after a moment's hesitation. "It makes sense to have these birds manned and ready to fly when the Goa'uld return."

"That's true," Dragan admitted. "But if the military has a force in control of Avalon it gives them all the time in the world to pick apart Avalon's tech piece by piece. Not to mention the fact that I doubt they will feel that they should let Xander on the base, let alone hand control back to him, ever."

Steve didn't like the implication of what his wingman was suggesting "I think that if the President orders them too they will walk away without a second thought. I'm not na<ve Drag, I've seen the dirty underside of human nature, but I've also experienced the bright side as well."

"Look Steve, Avalon is just too tempting a target. You can bet that if 'someone' has control over it there are gonna be others that will try and take it away from them, Sadly that's the way of the world. You can bet that Merlin has more than one trick up his sleeve to make sure that doesn't happen and honestly, if the US or anyone tries to take control of Avalon I will help the old bastard defend the base." Dragan shook his head and muttered low enough his radio barely picked it up. "I can live without the nightmare of humans having the technology that Avalon possesses."

"That's just wrong," Steve went sullenly silent.

Silence ruled between the two Hammerheads, leaving each of the pilots with their own thoughts. After a few minutes of deafening silence Dragan offered an olive branch. "Sure is some pretty scenery up here."


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