Summary: This is the 'action' part of the Lizzie!Whump fic I've undertaken. Previous four parts are linked.
Disclaimer: Not mine.
A/N: Thanks to alianne for betaing so wonderfully. And sorry this took so long. The muse is a fickle bitch sometimes. *slaps her* And she's not very good at the 'actiony' parts of things.
The 'already done' parts:
Nearly two months after their initial find, rescue was imminent. Tracking Elizabeth’s whereabouts proved more frustrating than productive. Despite the hundreds of planets in their database and four years of living in the Pegasus galaxy, their limitations were making themselves apparent. Emotion ran high and patience wore thin.
More than once John had snapped at any given person translating the various messages left behind by Elizabeth, each one a different language. Her clues were no doubt unrecognisable by either the Wraith or Kolya’s men due to the fact that their pursuit was turning into a rescue.
The expedition looked to John in faith. If he believed Elizabeth was alive, they did. If he believed they were close, they worked harder. If he doubted in his ability to find her, they wavered. His desperation was bridled only by Elizabeth’s trust in him to find her.
Her conviction was about to be tested.
A local magistrate had been easy enough to bribe for information. They had also been ordered to use whatever force necessary to recover Doctor Weir alive, which left no guilty conscience when the bribe turned into physical coercion for a location and timeframe. The tricky obstacle to overcome was the conglomerate of Wraith and an unknown number of armed men. Skill was needed.
“Shoot at anything that moves,” Ronon instructed as he took point.
The Colonel and Teyla followed formation as Lorne covered their six. A few steps into the complex and two men were over and done with by Ronon’s blasts. As they descended flights of stairs that led deeper into the earth more of Kolya’s men were taken out.
“Left,” John guided from the shabby schematic provided by the magistrate.
“Wraith,” Ronon hissed back as he pulled himself flush against the wall.
“So that’s where they’ve been hiding,” John murmured. “How many?” He asked.
“Two covering each side, one on the door.”
“Sir, we are in position,” cackled over Lorne’s earpiece.
“Ten four, Lieutenant. Med teams are standing by, sir,” Lorne relayed to Sheppard.
By no means was he going to let this moment pass.
“Cover me,” John ordered.
Ronon stepped out firing with deadly accuracy on the Wraith as John laid down suppressive fire and bolted for cover at the opposite end of the hallway. Heavy footsteps were echoing nearer as Ronon withdrew to his position of safety narrowly missing a stunner blast. A second later John signaled for Lorne to make his way across. Both Ronon and John fired around their corners to allow the Major safe passage.
“Two down three to go,” he informed the Colonel as he joined him.
“For somebody shooting blind around the corner,” Lorne nodded in Ronon’s direction, “he’s got killer aim.”
It was something John was relying on. The Wraith wouldn’t take long to reconfigure their coverage of the door. It was time to advance. Teyla and Lorne crouched down synchronically on opposite ends. Wraith tactics weren’t exactly based on strategic planning and their drones could only see a target at eyelevel.
The approaching drone squatted down to see Lorne’s newfound position. But Teyla was their trump card. The Wraith wouldn’t have expected to be attacked from below on both sides. On Sheppard’s signal Teyla opened fire at the foot soldier looking in Lorne’s direction as the Major targeted its head.
No sooner had the guard dropped the Major and Colonel pulled the pins from their flash bangs and hurled them down the hall. They ignited on impact and stunned the two remaining guards who were scrambling to compensate for their thinning ranks. Ronon advanced quickly delivering a kill shot to each creature.
On either side of the door Lorne and Teyla attached small explosives opposite the hinges and lock. They were quickly imploded. The door fell with a resonating thud.
As smoke cleared the room, a body strung up by its wrists came into view. John had to fight the urge to run towards it. He reminded himself that the room had to be secured first. Fanning out his team to inspect every nook and cranny for signs of another presence, he advanced on the hanging figure.
“Elizabeth?” he breathed.
“Clear,” came from three distant voices.
Almost a year of searching came to this. She was gaunt, weak and barely breathing. He tried rousing her again by voice.
She attempted to lift her head.
“Yeah,” he sighed in relief. “Yeah, it’s me. Hold on. I’m gonna get you out of here.”
John supported her body weight.
“Ronon,” he called.
The Satedan understood without further prompting what to do. He unshackled the manacles upon her wrists. John lowered her to the floor.
“You found me,” she managed a tired smile.
“Yeah, I did.” He didn’t know whether to cry or laugh, so his body opted for something in between. “Sorry I’m late.”
“Actually,” a voice from the doorway interrupted, “you are right on time.”
Kolya blocked their exit with his body mass.
With the team distracted by Kolya’s announcement Elizabeth sprung to life from John’s arms and knocked him backwards with strength impossible. Focusing her attention on Ronon she swiftly took him down with a kick to the groin and a jab to the throat.
Confused and unsure about what was happening, Lorne’s head was smashed into a wall before he had the chance to defend himself. He fell into an unconscious heap on the floor. Teyla remained the last one standing in a face off with her leader and friend.
“Elizabeth, what is happening?” She feared the answer as a familiar tingle crawled its way down her spine. “Michael?”
Teyla looked intently at Elizabeth with wonder.
“Yes,” Kolya recalled fondly. “You were always the one to sense the Wraith, were you not?”
Kolya forced Teyla to split her focus on the enemy at the door and the threat in front of her when he advanced deeper into the room. The act made way for his cohort to join them.
“What have you done to her?” Teyla asked of Michael.
A smile of triumph and pride spread across Michael’s face.
“Doctor Weir has become my perfect creation. You see, due to her resilience to physical coercions we needed to find an effective interrogation method.”
John had recovered by now and grit his teeth at that admission.
“I was able to meld your doctor’s genetic and cerebral structure to my own,” Michael continued with aplomb. “You now see standing before you my servant. She bends to my will, attacks at my command. She reads my thoughts as I do hers. As of this moment she wants nothing more than to rip my throat out, but as you can observe, her actions are controlled.”
“Michael,” Teyla tried to plead with reason. “You must let her go. Can you not see how frail she has become?”
“A frail being would not be able to do this.”
Elizabeth suddenly threw a punch at Teyla. The Athosian’s reflexes were faster than her opponents attack. She stepped to the side of the hit and used the momentum to send her crashing into the wall.
Using the distraction John bowled Kolya over with a running start as Ronon did the same to Michael.
Teyla became quickly engaged in her own struggle against an empowered Elizabeth. Her advances were quick and inhuman causing the Athosian to call upon skills she had not needed to employ in quite some time. Teyla found room to adjust her defence so as not to cause any more harm to her friend or exhaust her own reserves. In the course of dodging and deflecting, Teyla realised her battle with Elizabeth would end sooner if her connection to Michael had been severed.
“Ronon,” she yelled over blocking Doctor Weir’s assaulting fists. “Stop him!”
His tacit understanding immediately took over his building rage. This moment had been a long time coming for Ronon Dex. Summoning his hatred for those that destroyed his former life, vengeance roared from his throat as he intensified his offensive upon Michael.
Ronon had pummeled his enemy back into the hallway with blows to his head and torso. The Wraith tripped backwards to the ground over one of the dead guards and struggled to regain his stance. Towering over the fallen tormentor Ronon pulled Michael up by the front of his garments and delivered a head butt. Stunned and still within his powerful grip the Wraith was turned outward and with the precision of a killing machine the Satedan snapped his neck.
Simultaneously Teyla’s defence turned into a cradle of safety as Elizabeth was liberated from control.
In the frenzy neither had noticed John exacting revenge upon Kolya. It was an unfair fight to say the least. The Colonel had the former Commander’s arms pinned as he rained down upon Kolya’s face his pounding fists. The defeated man was nearing death if Sheppard was not stopped.
“John!” Elizabeth rasped as she took notice of his actions.
Hatred blazed in John’s eyes. His breathing was rapid and deep as her voice brought him back to his senses. He took a handful of Kolya’s hair to raise his head slightly off the ground.
“It’s not over,” he growled into the bleeding man’s face and unceremoniously let it drop to the ground.
John stood and staggered over to Elizabeth still in Teyla’s supported hold.
“I got her,” he said as he neared them. He ordered Teyla to check on Lorne.
“You okay?” he asked as he brushed some errant hair out of her face and took her weight into his arms again. His hands, in contrast to beating a man close to death mere seconds ago, were gentle in this embrace.
“I am now,” was her fragile answer.
“Let’s get you home.”
The mention of home finally cracked her determination to be unbreakable in the course of her entire ordeal. She gave into the release her mind and body needed.
John scooped her up in his arms carefully as she held fast to him for tangible confirmation of her rescue.
Ronon indicated Kolya.
“We’ll take care of it,” he assured as John carried Elizabeth to safety.