The Scourge

Transcript

Summary | Analysis | Notes | Questions | Production | Transcript

A tour of an off-world research base for a group of foreign diplomats turns dangerous when an insidious insect species gets loose.

EPISODE #917
ORIGINAL AIR DATE: 02.17.06
SYNDICATION AIR DATE: 04.23.07
DVD DISC: Season 9, Disc 5
WRITTEN BY: Joseph Mallozzi & Paul Mullie
DIRECTED BY: Ken Girotti
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Transcript by Jane Harrison

S.G.C. - CORRIDOR. SG-1 stride down the corridor on their way to the Gate Room. They are kitted up for a mission.

MITCHELL: I'm just a glass half full kind of guy! We found the cure for the Prior's plague and we got it out to the planets that needed it.

TEAL'C: And it has been some time since the last reported outbreak.

MITCHELL: That's right, so I'm chalking that one up to the 'win' column.

DANIEL: Look, all I'm saying is let's not get carried away. Yes, we stopped them this time but you can be damn sure they're already thinking up some other way of spreading fear and destruction through this galaxy.

The team enter the Gate Room and take their P90's from the soldiers who await them at the base of the ramp. The chevrons of the gate are locking into place.

MITCHELL: Yeah, that's why we call them the bad guys.

DANIEL: By the looks of things, the next one's going to be something big. Priors are already starting to step up the rhetoric with all this talk of Doomsday when all shall witness the final battle between light and darkness.

MITCHELL: That's what they said about Tyson/Holyfield -- there's always a rematch.

They step forward and face the gate as the wormhole connects.

MITCHELL: All right, let's move out. These Ancient ruins aren't going to explore themselves.

He and Carter lead Daniel and Teal'c up the ramp.

LANDRY: (over speaker) Hold up, SG-1.

They turn to look up at the General through the Control Room's window.

Walter sits in his post, regarding Landry quizzically.

LANDRY: (to Walter) Shut it down.

The power to the gate is cut.

LANDRY: (to SG-1) Your mission has been scrapped.

DANIEL: Why?

LANDRY: Because you're needed elsewhere.

The team look confused as they walk back down the ramp.


S.G.C. - BRIEFING ROOM. The team walk up the stairs from the Control Room and enter the Briefing Room, where Landry awaits them.

DANIEL: General, what's going on?

LANDRY: A team of representatives from the International Oversight Advisory are going on a tour of the Gamma site. Pentagon wants SG-1 to accompany them as their official escort.

As SG-1 come to stop in front of the table, their faces reflect their opinions about this suggestion.

TEAL'C: That is a most unusual request.

LANDRY: It will be I.O.A.'s first time off-world, the President wants to make sure it goes off without a hitch. He figured: who better to ensure that than our top team?

Mitchell leans over the backs of two chairs, his fingers laced.

MITCHELL: Sir, I don't mean to gripe ...

LANDRY: Permission to gripe granted.

MITCHELL: We're being put on babysitting duty?

LANDRY: Don't underestimate the importance of this mission. This is the I.O.A.! These people carry a lot of influence with the Stargate Program, how it's run, how it's funded. You should feel honoured!

Mitchell grimaces.

LANDRY: Just don't keep them up past ten and remember to read them a bed-time story before tucking them in for the night.

Landry saunters out of the room and back to his office.

The team exchange bemused glances.

Daniel clears his throat.


S.G.C. - GATE ROOM. SG-1 take their weapons from the S.F.s once more, this time with less enthusiasm. The chevrons of the gate lock into place.

Landry, Richard Woolsey and three I.O.A. delegates -- Shen Xiaoyi (China), LaPierre (France) and Chapman (U.K.) enter the room. They wear suits and carry briefcases.

They all pause and gaze up at the Stargate.

CHAPMAN: It's, er, it's much bigger than I imagined.

LANDRY: We get that a lot.

The delegates stare up at the impressive gate as Woolsey walks behind them.

WOOLSEY: Chapman, Mr. LaPierre, Ms. Shen. I'd like you to meet our escort to the Gamma Site, SG-1. Lieutenant Colonel Cameron Mitchell, Lieutenant Colonel Samantha Carter, Teal'c ...

Each member of SG-1 nods as they are introduced.

SHEN: ... And Doctor Daniel Jackson. PhD in archaeology, anthropology and philology, the man who solved the riddle of the Stargate.

DANIEL: Shen Xiaoyi, directed at Beijing Foreign Studies university and the London School of Economics and Political Science. Former attaché to the Chinese mission in the United States.

He smiles.

SHEN: (in Mandarin) How's your Mandarin?

DANIEL: (in Mandarin) Not as good as your English.

SHEN: (in Mandarin) It shows. (about Mitchell) You're bringing him along?

DANIEL: (in Mandarin) We have to baby-sit him.

Shen laughs appreciatively and Daniel smiles back at her.

MITCHELL: Yeah, that's very funny. (in Mandarin) Screw you!

Daniel does a quick double take and everyone looks at Mitchell, surprised.

WALTER: (OS) Chevron seven locked!

The group turn away from the introductions to watch the gate as it kawooshes.

LaPierre steps back slightly with awe.

Carter steps up onto the ramp.

CARTER: The Gamma Site is twenty-four thousand light years from here but once we step through the event horizon it will take us less than one second to get there.

Mitchell leans in to speak to Shen.

MITCHELL: After you.

The delegates step forward, full of wonder and make their way up the ramp.

As they pass through the gate followed by SG-1, Woolsey and Carter hang back.

WOOLSEY: Just to clarify; I'm going to be disassembled at the molecular level, then reassembled on the other side.

He looks at her, nervously.

CARTER: That's right.

WOOLSEY: And the chances of my being reassembled incorrectly ...

CARTER: Highly unlikely.

She takes his arm and leads him further up the ramp.

WOOLSEY: But not impossible.

CARTER: That's a word I stopped using nine years ago when I joined the Stargate Program.

Woolsey nods, has a final glance up at the event horizon and then cautiously steps through.

Carter follows.

WORMHOLE TRANSITION.


GAMMA SITE. Grey military buildings are nestled in a clearing amidst the lush green vegetation of the planet.

COMPOUND - CORRIDOR. Carter and Colonel Pearson, the leader of the base, show the delegates around.

CARTER: This planet was chosen for several reasons, including its unique radioactive ionosphere which makes it difficult to lock onto surface targets from orbit.

CHAPMAN: So no one can steal the Stargate.

CARTER: Can't be too careful these days.

PEARSON: I have over thirty scientists engaged in ongoing projects here at any given time.

The group rounds another corner and comes to a halt outside a lab. Inside the lab, two doctors in white coats are at work. One sits at a computer whilst the second, Doctor Myers, stands before a containment unit with a clipboard in hand.

The contingent enters the room.

PEARSON: (indicating) This is Doctor Myers, our lead entomologist. Doctor, would you mind telling us a little bit about your research?

MYERS: Yes. I'm studying an asexual fast reproducing insect, responsible for the devastation of numerous off-world crops.

LAPIERRE: A space bug.

MYERS: (disappointed) Right, space bugs. However, for the purposes of my research I refer to them as R-75. Now the fact that these insects have only manifested themselves on planets recently visited by Priors makes their analysis a top priority.

WOOLSEY: Is there anything to indicate that this is more than mere coincidence?

MYERS: No, not yet. Now our initial research proved incredibly challenging due to the short life spans of the R-75 specimens, until we succeeded in dramatically increasing their life cycles by depriving them of sustenance.

LaPierre walks over to peer through the protective glass at the bugs.

There are about two dozen of the black, stag beetle-like creatures in the containment unit. They slowly move around, not responding when LaPierre begins to tap on the glass with a pen.

MYERS: They feed and they die within a matter of hours, they starve and they live. So far it's been three days and counting.

LaPierre continues to tap at the glass.

MYERS: (irritated) Would you stop that please?

LaPierre steps away.

CHAPMAN: Bit lethargic, aren't they?

Myers signals to his laboratory assistant who leaves his post and flicks a light switch, plunging the room into darkness.

The bugs begin to move quickly, small noises can be heard.

SHEN: They're nocturnal.

MYERS: No. They function during the daylight, they just prefer the darkness. They spend most of their time burrowing underground consuming crops from the roots. Now, R-75 also displays a rather interesting defense mechanism which we're still in the process of studying. Observe.

Myers slips his hands into the protective gloves that are fitted to the tank and begins to wave his arms about in the air above the bugs.

The bugs scatter when his hands pass over them.

CARTER: Echolocation.

MYERS: Exactly. I theorize they use it to detect their enemies such as birds, for instance ...

PEARSON: All right. Thank you Doctor Myers, let's move on.

MYERS: Well, er, I'm not done yet.

PEARSON: We get the idea, thanks. Our next stop is Doctor Sharmer, our lead botanist.

The group files out the room to continue their tour, leaving a slightly put out Myers alone with his bugs.


CORRIDOR. Mitchell, Teal'c and Daniel walk briskly, having seemingly escaped the tour group.

MITCHELL: Seriously, what are we doing here?

DANIEL: Honest answer? P.R. for the Stargate Program.

MITCHELL: I'm telling you, today it's escorting foreign delegates on off-world tours, tomorrow it's calling at conventions and supermarket openings.

DANIEL: I know how you feel but if we can somehow reassure the I.O.A. of the job Stargate Command is doing then ...

MITCHELL: Daniel Jackson, the problem is not the I.O.A.

DANIEL: Okay, if we can somehow reassure the Chinese government.

MITCHELL: Oh, I think they're looking for more than reassurances.

The three turn a corner.

DANIEL: Well can you blame them? I mean, three years ago we promised to share all off-world technology.

MITCHELL: Of a none military nature.

DANIEL: That wasn't in the original wording of the agreement.

MITCHELL: Look, I don't want to argue about this. I'm right; we'll leave it at that.

DANIEL: Compelling argument! Teal'c, what do you think?

TEAL'C: I think I should have remained with the tour.


LAB. Doctor Myers inputs data on a computer as his assistant, Pullman, enters the room.

PULLMAN: Science fair's over. Looks like Doctor Tushiaki's magnetic resonance field study was the crowd favorite.

MYERS: How wonderful for him.

Myers lifts a fork from a nearby plate and shovels some food into his mouth. He immediately returns to his work as he chews.

PULLMAN: What's for lunch?

MYERS: (mouth full) Meatloaf.

PULLMAN: Monday. Do you mind if I go grab something?

MYERS: Take your time; I'm going to run some tests.

Myers does not look up from the computer as Pullman leaves the room.

He then sighs, picks up a container of leaves and then carries it over to the bugs after turning the main light out.

The bugs begin to move faster, the noise of their movement restarts.

Myers holds out a leaf.

MYERS: Come and get it.

He drops the small leaf into the containment unit. The bugs ignore it.

MYERS: Not hungry?

He returns to his computer and types rapidly for a moment before his attention is caught by the piece of meatloaf on his plate and fork.

Myers looks thoughtfully from the meatloaf to the bugs.

He walks slowly over to the containment unit, meatloaf in hand. He carefully turns the opening at the top of the unit and drops the meatloaf through the exposed opening.

MYERS: You can't possibly have a taste for ...

He closes the dispenser.

The noise emanating from the bugs grows louder and Myers stares at them, surprised.

The bugs swarm over the meatloaf piece, moving faster than before.

MYERS: ... Meatloaf.


COMMISSARY. The delegates and SG-1 sit around one table as Teal'c grabs a stack of corn dogs and joins them.

Shen, however, is sat separately at the next table.

She makes notes in a book as Daniel chooses his own food and crosses over to her, thoughtfully.

He stands next to her table.

DANIEL: Don't feel like joining us at the other table?

Shen looks up at him.

SHEN: I'm just in the middle of ...

DANIEL: (cheerfully) Okay! Don't mind if I do.

He sits down opposite her.

Shen moves her briefcase to one side.

DANIEL: Sorry if you were just in the middle of something.

He tucks into his food.

SHEN: Taking notes on my visit here, while the details are still fresh on my mind. This tour has provided me some wonderful insight into tedious off-world research and the lunch menu here on your Gamma site.

DANIEL: (swallowing) Well, believe it or not, the, uh ...

SHEN: Is this where you tell me the S.G.C. has no choice but to maintain its air of secrecy surrounding its operations? That, as an outsider, I could never appreciate or understand the work you all do, saving our planet time and again?

DANIEL: Well, actually I was going to say: believe it or not, the meatloaf's pretty good.

There is a pause.

SHEN: In the three years since our nations signed the Gate Alliance treaty your government has made great strides in the field of military technology but left us out in the cold.

DANIEL: Well, I hate to say it but as long as the U.S. military's running the show, that's just the way it's going to be.

SHEN: Perhaps it's time that changed.

DANIEL: There's no way the American military will ever give up control of the Stargate Program.

SHEN: Maybe it won't have a choice in the matter.

They stare at each other across the charged atmosphere.


CORRIDOR. Myers strides down the corridor towards his lab as Pullman scurries after him.

PULLMAN: So, what did the tests say?

MYERS: I don't know, I was called in to help Santiago with his mealworm situation. You know, if I wasn't such a patient man, I swear.

They enter the lab. Pullman looks towards the containment unit and freezes.

PULLMAN: Oh my god!

Myers turns to see that the bugs have reproduced, massively. They now fill the unit, jammed in, active and making noise.

The two scientists step forward, fascinated.

Suddenly, the pressure of the bugs proves too much and doors of the armholes burst open.

Bugs flood across the floor, skittering quickly.

Myers and Pullman leap backwards out of the room.

Myers slams his fist on the door control, sealing the bugs in.


LAB. Biohazard vents release inside the lab and the bugs are sucked away.


CORRIDOR. Myer and Pullman breathlessly wait as a siren wails.

A thud signifies the end of the containment procedure and Pullman nervously pulls a swipe-card from his pocket.

PULLMAN: All clear.

Myers reaches to take the card from him but suddenly jerks. A bug is on his arm. Myers frantically shakes it off and squashes it underneath his shoe.

MYERS: Damn thing bit me!

He snatches the card from Pullman and uses it to open the door. All the bugs have been cleared away -- the lab is deserted.


CORRIDOR. Colonel Pearson leads the delegates and Woolsey around the compound.

CHAPMAN: I must say Colonel, the scope of the facility has surpassed my expectations.

LAPIERRE: Yes. Quite remarkable.

SHEN: For my part, I'm somewhat disappointed. I was hoping the tour would be a little more thorough.

PEARSON: The Gamma site is a U.S. facility, Ms. Shen. Access to some of the more sensitive areas is restricted.

As they continue to walk, Doctor Myers staggers slowly across the corridor in front of them. He is groaning and in obvious discomfort.

He stumbles and supports his weight on a table, sweating profusely.

Pearson steps forward, arms outstretched.

PEARSON: Doctor Myers, are you okay?

Myers reaches out to Pearson, who supports him as the scientist drops to the floor, unconscious.

The delegates worriedly look on.


GAMMA SITE - GATE ROOM. Mitchell, Carter and Pearson turn to Myers' assistant for answers as they stand in front of the gate.

PULLMAN: R-75 breached containment and we had to exercise a disposal protocol. Doctor Myers was bitten but he went to the infirmary to get checked out and they didn't find anything wrong with him.

PEARSON: How the hell did the bugs breach containment?

PULLMAN: Well, Doctor Myers thinks he may have triggered a massive reproductive cycle after feeding them a piece of meatloaf.

CARTER: Wait a minute. R-75 is omnivorous?

PULLMAN: Carnivorous actually. They seem to have lost their taste for plants.

Woolsey enters the room, purposefully.

WOOLSEY: (to Pearson) The representatives are getting a little anxious. I'm afraid that I'm going to have to insist that we be permitted to return to Earth, as scheduled.

PEARSON: I'm sorry Mr. Woolsey, no one's going anywhere. This base is in lockdown until we can establish the source of Doctor Myers' condition.

Soldiers wheel Myers, who is contained in a coffin-like hazmat pod, into the gate room on a stretcher.

Myers is unconscious, completely unresponsive.

WOOLSEY: Where's he going?

PEARSON: Back to Earth, where he'll be quarantined.

WOOLSEY: He gets to go back?!

Carter shakes her head at his reaction.

PEARSON: We don't have the medical facilities for this. If we don't send him back, he could die.

WOOLSEY: I'm sorry, this is totally unacceptable! The Pentagon will be hearing from the I.O.A. about this and you can be certain your name will be mentioned, Colonel.

The soldiers carefully lift Myers from the stretcher and begin to carry him over to the gate.

As they ascend the first steps a squeak sounds from inside the unit. A bug emerges from Myers' mouth, causing the soldiers to drop the scientist.

The pod bursts open.

Bugs swarm from Myers' mouth as the others look on. They swarm over his head, covering it.

Carter levels her weapon as the bugs begin to swarm out of the unit and into the gate room.

MITCHELL: Whoa, carnivorous. Move, now!

The personnel flee the room.


CORRIDOR. Daniel and Teal'c walk the delegates towards the gate room.

LAPIERRE: This is outrageous. Mr. Woolsey assured me that we would be leaving on schedule!

The facility's sirens begin to wail as Carter, Mitchell and Woolsey appear at the other end of the corridor.

MITCHELL: Back in the elevator, we're going upstairs.

SHEN: What's going on?

MITCHELL: We have a bit of a bug problem.

White coated personnel follow behind them as machine gun fire rings out.

MITCHELL: You don't want to be last.


GAMMA SITE - BRIEFING ROOM. The representatives and SG-1 await news. Chapman paces whilst the others are seated at the table.

Carter and Woolsey stand to one side.

WOOLSEY: I don't understand, what happened to him?

CARTER: Well, I can't say for sure but my guess is the bug must have laid its eggs in him. They incubated and when they hatched–well, we know they eat meat.

WOOLSEY: I'm sorry I asked.

He returns to the delegates as Carter turns to the rest of her team.

DANIEL: Well, I think we're past the point of coincidence; it's no question that these bugs were the Priors' follow up to the virus.

TEAL'C: And it appears that they were designed to circumvent any attempt to forestall their destructive nature.

Carter nods, grimly.

CARTER: Deny them crops and their physiology adapts to an alternate food source.

DANIEL: Yeah, us.

Mitchell sighs and activates his radio.

MITCHELL: Colonel Pearson. Colonel, do you read?

The lights in the room begin to flicker. The delegates stand, looking concerned.

WOOLSEY: (reassuringly) It's all right, I'm sure it's just a little power fluctuation. Nothing to worry about.

The room is plunged into darkness.

WOOLSEY: Oh, damnit.

MITCHELL: That's enough of this.

He strides over to the door and flings it open.

Colonel Pearson marches into the room, accompanied by a S.F. with a flashlight.

MITCHELL: Colonel. What's the situation?

PEARSON: Not good. There are thousands of those things in the pod. They killed one of my men before we retreated.

DANIEL: You lost the Gate Room?

PEARSON: We need to take it back.

MITCHELL: Sounds like a plan.

Pearson walks further into the room and approaches the I.O.A. representatives.

PEARSON: Mr. Woolsey, my man will escort you and your people to the surface. Get you to a safe location. Get you as far away from here as possible until this situation is contained.

He turns to leave.

WOOLSEY: I don't think so.

The military personnel look at him, as one.

PEARSON: Excuse me?

WOOLSEY: SG-1 will escort us out. They're here to ensure the safety of this delegation.

MITCHELL: You understand that no one gets off this planet until the gate is retaken.

WOOLSEY: And I'm sure Colonel Pearson and his people will do everything to ensure that happens. In the meantime, you will take us to the surface. You will protect us, as per your orders from the Pentagon.

Mitchell and Pearson exchange a frustrated look.

PEARSON: All right. Get them out of here.

Pearson leaves.

Mitchell watches Woolsey with disgust as he signals to the delegates, who stand and then follow the team out of the room.


OUTSIDE GAMMA BASE. The group walk away from the base in a line headed by one of Pearson's airmen, Walker.

FOREST. Woolsey pushes his way towards the front of the group.

WOOLSEY: Excuse me. (to Walker) Surely we could have taken a jeep?

WALKER: We're headed to an unmanned research station. It's located approximately ten clicks from here, through dense forest.

Walker hands Carter a map.

WOOLSEY: Then I have to ask if this is really necessary. I mean, couldn't we just wait here until Colonel Pearson gives us the all clear?

MITCHELL: Our orders were to take you to the research station -- that's where we're going.

The group continues walking but Teal'c, at the back with Daniel and the second airman, slows to a halt. He stares at the ground, concentrating.

DANIEL: Teal'c?

Mitchell turns to notice that they are not following and signals to the group to stop.

He takes his weapon from his shoulder, preparing for action.

A muffled humming and scuttling sound can be heard all around them.

Walker tightens his grip on his weapon.

WALKER: What is that?

The group listens intently.

CARTER: It's the bugs.

The sounds become clearer as the bugs squeak beneath the ground.

The second airman looks down at his feet, panicked.

AIRMAN 2: What's happening?

Thousands of bugs erupt from beneath him, flowing up his legs like a deadly flood. He falls to the floor, crying out as they devour him.

The rest of the group stare in horror as the bugs disperse -- there is nothing of the airman left.

MITCHELL: We have to move, now!

The group sprints away, running along the top of a cliff.

They enter thicker vegetation and Mitchell skids to a halt, holding up his hands.

Everyone stops, panting for breath.

MITCHELL: Hold on, hold on.

CHAPMAN: I think we can assume the bugs got off the base.

CARTER: They must be using their echolocation as a means to hunt their prey.

DANIEL: Us. She means us.

LAPIERRE: Where can we go? They move underground.

MITCHELL: (to Carter) We need rocky terrain, somewhere difficult for them to move.

Carter nods.

WALKER: We could try the caves. This way.

Mitchell signals his assent and the group set off running once more.

CAVES. As they race to the caves, Carter and Walker step to one side to usher in the I.O.A. representatives.

CARTER: Get them inside.

Walker leads the civilians further into the cave as SG-1 stand at the entrance, their weapons pointed at the softer ground.

There is a moment of silence.

A squeaking, scratching and rumbling sound increases in volume.

MITCHELL: They're coming.

Carter has an idea.

CARTER: They're highly sensitive to sound -- the concussive force of our weapons should be enough to drive them back.

MITCHELL: Are you serious?

She nods.

Mitchell turns to face the oncoming plague of insects.

MITCHELL: Fine. Where do we shoot?

CARTER: Just fire at the ground.

Woolsey and the others in the cave cover their ears as SG-1 discharge their weapons.

The spray of bullets kicks up dust from the soil and the air is filled with harsh gunfire.

SG-1 cease fire. The noise of the bugs has died down; they are no longer just outside the cave.

The team wait for a moment and then Mitchell turns to Carter.

MITCHELL: Very nice.

He steps deeper into the cave.

MITCHELL: All right folks, listen up. We're surrounded by rock here so there's no way the bugs are digging in. We've got the entrance covered -- everything's going to be fine.

Woolsey nods but none of the delegates look reassured.

Mitchell returns to his team.

DANIEL: Until we run out of bullets.

Mitchell just looks at him.

DANIEL: Bullets.

MITCHELL: Yeah.

The team look out of the cave, unsure when the next attack will come.


S.G.C. - BRIEFING ROOM. Walter stands at a computer, typing in information.

Landry enters, looking worried.

LANDRY: What do you have for me, Chief?

WALTER: Sir, we were unable to acquire a video feed from the surveillance cameras in the Gamma site Gate Room but, I've managed to pick up motion sensor telemetry.

Landry stares at the computer screen as the telemetry is shown. The Gamma site Gate Room is overrun with the R-75 bugs. They are grouped on the gate, up the walls and there are many on the embarkation steps.

Walter zooms in on one section which depicts just how many bugs they are facing.

Landry exhales, loudly.


S.G.C. - LAB. Landry strides into the lab, where Doctor Lee is stood in front of a computer terminal.

LANDRY: What have you found out?

LEE: Well, I learned that bugs still creep me out.

Lee walks around to stand at the opposite side of the desk to Landry.

LEE: It all started when I was a kid and my parents took me on this picnic and this bug crawled up on me ...

Lee walks his fingers up his chest to demonstrate but stops as he realizes that Landry is not impressed.

LEE: Maybe you'd prefer to hear this story another time.

LANDRY: I doubt it.

Lee misunderstands and resumes his stance.

Landry walks around the desk to stand next to him.

LEE: Well, I ... (realizing) Oh. Ah. After careful analysis of the telemetry we got back from the Gamma site Gate Room, I have determined that this is our culprit. R-75.

He presses a key and an image of the bug that is plaguing the Gamma site appears.

LANDRY: The Prior bugs.

LEE: Yeah, well, that connection is yet to be determined but, y'know, we were originally investigating this pesky little crop killer as a possible weapon against the addictive kassa harvest being produced and distributed by the Lucian Alliance and the various specimens we got off several off-world locations were incredibly voracious. So voracious that they would literally eat themselves to death but when deprived of nourishment these insects underwent some kind of trans ...

LANDRY: Fascinating. How do we kill them?

Lee fumbles for a moment, jolted from his explanation.

LEE: Well, I mean given the updated data I should be able to whip something up.

LANDRY: Very well. As per protocol CR-91, we'll be sending the Odyssey to deliver the payload from planetary orbit.

LEE: CR-91? Uh, Sir? The toxin will be lethal to humans as well. I mean, we'll have to be sure that the Gamma site is evacuated before we deploy it.

LANDRY: That's assuming there's anyone left to evacuate.

Lee opens his mouth to say something, but Landry's steely determination stops him.

The General stalks from the room.


GAMMA SITE - PLANET CAVES (NIGHT). A nocturnal bird hoots and bushes outside the cave rustle, startling Walker as he crouches on guard.

In the cave, Daniel takes two power bars and moves to sit down on a rock near Shen, who sits separate from the others.

SHEN: On the bright side, I was worried that my report would make for a boring read.

He passes her a bar.

DANIEL: So I'm guessing we're going to lose points for this little incident?

SHEN: To be honest with you, my report is a mere formality. Ultimately, it will have no bearing on my government's plan of action in regard to the Stargate Program.

DANIEL: What exactly should we be expecting down the line?

SHEN: Doctor Jackson ...

DANIEL: Daniel.

She smiles.

SHEN: Daniel. Maybe now is not the right time to be having this conversation.

DANIEL: When would be a good time?

SHEN: Perhaps when we're all back on Earth and not having to worry about being eaten alive by alien insects.

DANIEL: Look, I understand your government has issues with Stargate Command but you cannot deny the accomplishments, or the significant ...

SHEN: That has nothing to do with it.

Daniel looks at her, sharply.

SHEN: Daniel, let me ask you something. If, nine years ago, it had been my country and not the United States military that had given you the opportunity to travel to the stars, would it have made a difference to you? Would you have turned us down?

DANIEL: No, of course not. So long as the priority remained off-world exploration that could benefit Earth, I would have gladly accepted the offer.

SHEN: I may hold you that someday.

Daniel slowly blinks, confused.


CAVE ENTRANCE. Mitchell makes his way by torchlight to the entrance of the cave to check on Walker.

Walker scrambles to his feet as he sees Mitchell approach.

MITCHELL: At ease.

Mitchell steps outside of the cave, shining his flashlight into the trees. He activates his radio.

MITCHELL: (into radio) Colonel Pearson, come in. (beat) Pearson, come in.

Static is the only reply.

MITCHELL: (into radio) Gamma site, do you read?

He waits for a moment and then switches off his radio.

MITCHELL: Damnit.

WALKER: They'd have answered by now.

MITCHELL: Yeah, I know.

Mitchell re-enters the cave's entrance.

MITCHELL: You okay?

WALKER: Yes Sir, I'm fine. I'm just a little bit rattled, is all.

Mitchell pats the soldier on the arm and moves back into the main cave.

The airman nervously scans the tree-line, rubbing his neck.

He scratches at his neck briefly, as the outline of one of the bugs can be seen moving under his skin there.


CAVES (MORNING). Mitchell chomps on a quick breakfast bar as he, Carter and Teal'c review the situation. The delegates sit nearby, listening in.

TEAL'C: We have heard nothing from the Gamma site since we left. I fear we must assume the worst and plan accordingly.

MITCHELL: Yeah, I was thinking the same thing.

TEAL'C: We cannot stay here indefinitely. Eventually, this position will be overrun.

MITCHELL: Yeah, we need to get as far away as possible.

CARTER: Well, given the rate these bugs are multiplying, it's doubtful that we could outpace them on foot.

TEAL'C: We must return for the F-302's.

Mitchell gives a nod of agreement, chewing thoughtfully.

Rushing footsteps make them look up as Daniel runs into the cave.

DANIEL: He's gone! Airman Walker's missing. I just went to the front to check on him -- he's not there anymore.

CHAPMAN: Perhaps he's just stepped out to relieve himself.

Mitchell and Teal'c gather their weapons and head to the front of the cave.

Daniel shines his flashlight at the delegate, incredulous, and then follows his team-mates.

MITCHELL: We'll be back.

Carter is left with the frightened civilians.


GAMMA SITE - FOREST. Mitchell, Daniel and Teal'c stalk carefully through the vegetation.

Mitchell activates his radio.

MITCHELL: (into radio) Walker.

Mitchell holds up his fist to stop the other two men and then indicates that they should spread out in separate directions.

The three search for Walker, ducking for low branches and stepping over the smaller shrubs that litter the forest floor.

Daniel pushes a branch out of the way, noticing something in front of him as he steps past it.

DANIEL: (into radio) I think I got something.

MITCHELL: (into radio) Coming to you.

Mitchell quickens his pace, jogging through the forest to Daniel's position.

Teal'c pushes past a tree to rejoin his team.

In a small clearing, Daniel stands over the body of Airman Walker.

He winces at the loss as Mitchell and Teal'c arrive.

DANIEL: We're too late.

Suddenly, Walker's leg twitches.

Mitchell kneels down and lays a hand on the airman's chest, offering assistance.

MITCHELL: Walker, take it easy.

But the movement was not caused by Walker. Mitchell leaps back as the younger man's chest begins to ripple.

The bugs break out from his chest and swarm over the fresh meat.

Daniel and Teal'c prepare to fire but Mitchell stops them with a warning hand.

MITCHELL: Wait, don't move.

The bugs burrow beneath the ground and disappear from sight.

The three men survey the ground beneath their feet warily.

MITCHELL: (whispering) Jackson, why don't you go back to the cave, tell Carter Teal'c and I are going back for the 302's?

DANIEL: Where are you planning on landing them?

MITCHELL: We'll do an aerial surveillance and find some place, then we'll come back and get everyone and ferry them to a safe location.

DANIEL: Okay, where would that be?

MITCHELL: Far away from here.

DANIEL: Right, okay. Well -- good luck.

Daniel backs away from Mitchell and Teal'c, planting his feet carefully on the ground.

Mitchell and Teal'c head off towards the Gamma site compound.


FOREST. Mitchell and Teal'c carefully walk side by side, weapons at the ready.

MITCHELL: Let me ask you a question. All those years you were fighting the Goa'uld, did you ever just step back and say 'sooner or later our luck's going to run out and we're gonna get our asses kicked'?

TEAL'C: Never.

MITCHELL: Never, not once. Even though you were vastly outnumbered fighting an opponent with superior technology and firepower.

TEAL'C: They may have had the superior forces and resources but we possessed something far greater.

MITCHELL: Which was?

TEAL'C: A just cause. I had no doubt the Goa'uld would be defeated. Perhaps not in my lifetime but I knew eventually they would fall and I have no doubt the same fate awaits the Ori.

MITCHELL: You see that's what I like about you, you're always positive. Hell, you've probably already passed this bug situation and are thinking about what movie you want to watch tomorrow night.

TEAL'C: I was considering "Old School."

Mitchell grins.

MITCHELL: My boy blue!

An explosion suddenly rumbles through the forest.


CAVE. The ground shakes and dust falls from the roof.

The delegates jump.

WOOLSEY: What was that?

Carter silences him with a gesture.

CARTER: Wait here.

She rushes to the entrance of the cave, where Daniel has just arrived.

They both activate their radios.

CARTER: (into radio) Teal'c, Cameron, what's your status?


FOREST. Teal'c and Mitchell crest the cliff-top they ran across earlier and look out over the clearing towards the Gamma site base.

Mitchell responds on his radio.

MITCHELL: We're okay Carter.

DANIEL: (OS) What happened?

MITCHELL: Looks like the base self-destruct triggered.

CAVE. Carter's face falls. She and Daniel look at each other, bleakly.

FOREST. Mitchell and Teal'c stare at the compound. It is little more than a pile of smoking rubble.

MITCHELL: (into radio) Gamma site's gone.

CAVE. Carter and Daniel take in this bad news.


LATER. Daniel sits at the cave entrance, on guard. Inside, Carter fields questions from the terrified I.O.A. representatives.

CHAPMAN: How could the self-destruct have been triggered?

CARTER: The bugs must have gotten into the system.

LaPierre angrily steps forward.

LAPIERRE: What difference does it make now? The base has been destroyed!

Woolsey walks over to him, his hand outstretched diplomatically.

Shen looks on, silently.

WOOLSEY: Please calm down.

LAPIERRE: Don't tell me to calm down! If we had been allowed to leave on schedule ...

CARTER: Please, keep your voice down.

LAPIERRE: I am sick of being told what to do. Why should I listen to you? Why should any of us listen to you?!

CARTER: (pointedly) Because you are alerting the bugs to our presence.

LaPierre stomps to the other side of the cave and sits down.

WOOLSEY: Colonel, a word.

They step away from the others.

WOOLSEY: I understand you're doing everything in your power to help us and I appreciate that but I think you're being a bit insensitive to our needs right now. All I'm asking is for a little reassurance, a few words to let them know that everything is going to be okay. I don't think it's too much to ask, all things considered.

Carter smiles dangerously -- she is getting fed up of this.

CARTER: Mr. Woolsey, if I could go back in time -- which, admittedly is an opportunity I am occasionally presented with -- I would have made sure that we left the base as scheduled but the reality is for the time being we are stuck here, trapped in this cave, surrounded by predatory insects with no way to get to the Stargate. Now I'm sorry but I'm going to have a hard time mustering up a convincing pep-talk, all things considered.

WOOLSEY: I see. In that case, I'd just like to point out that this routine off-world excursion has turned into a disaster and the ramifications for Stargate Command will be enormous. Saving our lives would go a long way to minimizing the damage.

CARTER: (dangerous whisper) I'll keep that in mind.

Woolsey heads back over to the representatives.

WOOLSEY: Don't worry, she said everything is going to be okay.

In the foreground, Carter closes her eyes and exhales her anger.


FOREST. Mitchell and Teal'c make their way through the foliage.

MITCHELL: I'm telling you, it's time you got your own place.

TEAL'C: I endeavored to establish a life off-base last year; I even went so far as to acquire my own apartment. Unfortunately, it did not work out.

MITCHELL: Yeah, you got framed for murder but you can't let one bad experience put you off. Hell, the first time I moved out, I got next door to a guy who practiced drum solos all night long. (beat) When we get back, I'm going to help you find your own place.

TEAL'C: That will be unnecessary.

MITCHELL: Dude, what are friends for?

TEAL'C: For listening when they are told that will be unnecessary.

A deep rumbling sounds from beneath the ground.

Teal'c holds up his fist and they both freeze to the spot.

The chirruping of the bugs grows louder and the very earth begins to shake beneath the two men's feet.

Mitchell aims his weapon at the ground.

The ground stops moving as the wave of insects seemingly passes them by.

Teal'c and Mitchell remain motionless and silent.


CAVE. Carter steps out to join Daniel where he leans at the cave's entrance.

DANIEL: What the hell is taking them?


FOREST. Mitchell and Teal'c look around themselves, cautiously.

Mitchell deliberately lifts up his foot and tentatively places it on the ground.

The rumbling returns.

DANIEL: (OS) Where are you guys?

Mitchell quickly activates his radio.

MITCHELL: (whispering into radio) Requesting radio silence!

Another wave of insects can be heard passing beneath the dirt.

CAVE. Daniel and Carter exchange an uncomfortable glance.

FOREST. Mitchell and Teal'c stare at the ground. All is quiet.

MITCHELL: (whispering) I think we're good to go.

He makes to leave but Teal'c grabs his arm.

TEAL'C: Perhaps we should keep any unnecessary conversation to a minimum.

Mitchell nods.

MITCHELL: Okay.

They try to tread lightly as they move away from the clearing.


S.G.C. - LANDRY'S OFFICE. Landry is studying the star map with a frown when Walter taps on the open door.

WALTER: Sir, we just received a sub-space transmission from the Odyssey. The E.T.A. is five hours and the Pentagon's on line two.

Landry sighs and walks over to his desk.

LANDRY: Thank you, Chief.

Walter backs out of the room as Landry picks up his phone.

LANDRY: (into phone) Landry here.


GAMMA SITE - CAVE. Woolsey is reassuring LaPierre with a hand on his shoulder.

Carter watches for a moment then turns when she hears approaching footsteps.

Mitchell, Teal'c and Daniel enter the cave.

MITCHELL: Hi. Scratch plan B.

CHAPMAN: What do we do now? If the gate is buried, they won't be able to send a rescue team.

MITCHELL: Which means they'll send the Odyssey. In fact, it's probably already on its way here, so all you've got to do is sit back, relax -- everything's going to be fine.

Mitchell sits down on a rock and folds his arms across his chest.

CARTER: Theoretically.

Everyone looks at her.

MITCHELL: Theoretically?

CARTER: Theoretically, yes, the Odyssey could come and beam us off the planet's surface.

WOOLSEY: But?

Shen steps forward behind him.

CARTER: Look, I'm sorry but there's no point sugar-coating this. If Stargate Command is operating on the assumption that the base has been lost, they'll enact protocol CR-91.

Mitchell rubs his eyes.

SHEN: What's that?

CARTER: Once in orbit the Odyssey will launch a payload, probably a neurotoxin that will wipe out R-75. That will allow Stargate Command to mount a salvage operation of the Gamma site.

DANIEL: But they'll beam us out of here first.

CARTER: Our transmitters won't work because of the interference in the atmosphere.

DANIEL: What about our life signs?

CARTER: Because the bugs are multiplying at an alarming rate and because of the fact that we are completely surrounded, the Odyssey won't be able to pick up our individual readings inside a sea of life signs.

LaPierre stands, suddenly.

LAPIERRE: My god!

SHEN: What you're saying is that they're coming out all this way but instead of rescuing us, they're going to kill us with poison gas?

CARTER: Because they have no way of knowing that we're still here.

LAPIERRE: Then we're going to die on this planet, twenty-five thousand light years from Earth.

MITCHELL: Hey, relax! For starters, it's only twenty-four thousand light years.

LaPierre looks away in disgust.

MITCHELL: (to Carter, quietly) What's your E.T.A. for Odyssey?

CARTER: I have no way of knowing exactly when it was sent but given the approximate time that Stargate Command lost contact with the Gamma site and allowing for the production of the toxin, I'd say inside of a few hours.

There is a pause as the severity of the situation sets in.

TEAL'C: We must find a way to get in contact with the Odyssey to let the crew know that we are in fact alive.

MITCHELL: Except our only way of communicating with that ship went up with the Gamma base.

DANIEL: Maybe not. The research station. It must have some kind of communication array that lets it transmit data back to the Gamma site.

TEAL'C: But is it capable of reaching a ship in planetary orbit?

CARTER: It could, if I had some time to work on it.

WOOLSEY: Then all we have to do is get to the research station.

MITCHELL: Right. And the only thing between us and it is five miles of forest and a whole lotta bugs.

Carter and Daniel give grim smiles.

The delegates shuffle, uncomfortably.

MITCHELL: Piece of cake.


FOREST. The group briskly walk towards the research station, keeping just outside of the tree-line.

LaPierre leans forward with his hands on his knees as he tiredly pants for air.

Mitchell gives him a light push as he passes him.

MITCHELL: Keep moving.

LAPIERRE: I cannot.

Carter and Daniel, who are up ahead, stop. Carter walks towards the exhausted Frenchman.

CARTER: We're almost there.

LAPIERRE: That is what you said almost half an hour ago!

Carter shares a frustrated glance with Mitchell.

CARTER: (through gritted teeth) The transmission we'll be sending will enable the Odyssey to triangulate our position and pick up our individual life signs but we all have to be within the target area.

LaPierre sits down on a rock.

LAPIERRE: We've been walking for hours.

MITCHELL: Hey, we don't have time to sit around!

Woolsey places a hand on LaPierre's shoulder.

LAPIERRE: We are in violent agreement.

MITCHELL: You know what? Sit here.

He takes out his sidearm and hands it to LaPierre, his temper fraying.

LaPierre takes the gun, confused.

MITCHELL: You cover our six but stay alert. You'll here the bugs coming but tree ferrets give no warning.

Mitchell makes to walk off.

LAPIERRE: Tree ferrets?

MITCHELL: Yeah, nasty buggers. Swoop down and separate a man's head from his torso before he can blink.

Carter tries not to smile.

Woolsey quickly rejoins the group.

LAPIERRE: You're, you're lying.

Mitchell says nothing and the group starts walking once more.

LaPierre sits for a moment before jumping up.

LAPIERRE: Wait!

He runs to catch up, falling into step with Carter.

CARTER: We're almost there.

LAPIERRE: Stop saying that.


SPACE. The Odyssey travels through hyperspace towards the Gamma Site's planet.


GAMMA SITE. Through binoculars, Mitchell looks at the research station. It is an innocuous military building, camouflaged amongst the trees and rocks.

MITCHELL: There it is. Let's pick up the pace.

The group set off at a jog, leaping down a rocky hill.

Shen slips as she attempts to slide down and her ankle twists awkwardly beneath her.

SHEN: (in Mandarin) What horrendous luck!

She rubs her ankle, clearly in pain.

As Daniel bends to help her, Mitchell holds his finger to his lips.

It is too late. The noises of the bugs return as Shen's cry gives away the whereabouts of the group.

Daniel wraps an arm around the Chinese delegate to support her and the group rush forward with renewed vigour.

Woolsey sprints towards the station, his arms pumping.

Daniel and Shen are further behind as the others burst into the research station. Shen hobbles quickly.

Teal'c and Mitchell take up positions outside the hut as Carter, once inside, sets immediately about her task.

Teal'c fires at the ground as Mitchell ushers Shen and Daniel into the relative safety of the building.

DANIEL: Look out, look out.

He pushes past a panting LaPierre and sets Shen down in a chair before racing back outside to help his team-mates keep the bugs at bay.

The communications array whirs as Carter attempts to boost the signal.

LAPIERRE: Can you do it?

Carter ignores him and carries on working.

LaPierre moves to kneel by Carter's side.

LAPIERRE: Is it working?

CHAPMAN: It's too late. We're too late!

SHEN: They're right outside.

LAPIERRE: Is it going to work? Do you think you can make it work in time?

Woolsey rushes forward and grabs LaPierre.

WOOLSEY: Shut up, shut up, shut up! Let her do her work!

The representatives look shocked.

CARTER: Thank you, Mr. Woolsey.

WOOLSEY: You're welcome.


Outside, the machine gun fire continues to rage. Teal'c and Daniel pause to change their magazines as Mitchell rushes to stick his head around the research station's door.

MITCHELL: How's it going?

CARTER: I need to significantly boost the power in order to penetrate the radioactivity in the ionosphere.

MITCHELL: All right, boost it already!

He ducks back outside.

CARTER: Yeah, I think I'm good.

She flicks one last switch and the array whirs as it powers up.


Outside, Mitchell changes his clip and Teal'c fires at the ground. The noise from the insects dramatically increases.

As Teal'c and Daniel fire with little effect, Mitchell rushes back over to the station and pops his head around the door again.

He simply looks at Carter.

CARTER: The vibrations being generated by the communications array must be attracting the bugs. Think you can hold them off?

MITCHELL: Is this a bad time to tell you we're almost out of ammo?

He returns to the fight, leaving Carter to look up, panicked.

LaPierre covers his face with his hands.


Outside, the other three members of SG-1 get a brief rest -- the bugs have fallen silent.

Mitchell surveys the ground.

MITCHELL: It's time to improvise.

In the shelter, Carter glances at her watch. The look on her face reveals how close they are cutting it.


OUTSIDE. Mitchell, Daniel and Teal'c pass each other blocks of C4 and detonators as they hurriedly execute their plan.

They push the charges into the plastic explosive and bury them at various points around the research station, covering them loosely with soil.

As Mitchell and Daniel return to the front of the building, Daniel activates his radio.

DANIEL: Okay, go.


INSIDE. Carter nods and turns the communications array back on.

CHAPMAN: How long before they receive the transmission?

CARTER: They should pick it up as soon as they enter orbit. And like I said, we have no way of knowing when that's going to be.

She stands, grabs her weapon and makes her way to the door.

LaPierre blocks her exit.

LAPIERRE: How long can they hold of the bugs?

Carter leaves, not even dignifying him with an answer.


OUTSIDE. Carter joins the line-up with the rest of her team.

The noises made by the bugs surround them.

TEAL'C: They are approaching from the right.

To the right, an explosion bursts out of the ground from the C4.

Carter jumps.

MITCHELL: Well, the motion sensors work!

They turn and begin firing in long bursts at the ground in front of them.

The noises die down momentarily.

MITCHELL: That pushed them back a little.

All too soon, the insects can be heard again. They approach from the opposite direction.

DANIEL: Over here!

A second explosion sends dirt flying and then the team are firing their weapons again, hailing bullets into the soil.

Two more explosions boom at once from behind the team, the bugs are attacking from all directions simultaneously.

Carter and Mitchell swing round to fire upon the second front.


RESEARCH STATION. Inside the station, the delegates cower as the booms echo outside.

Woolsey crouches to the ground, covering his ears.

Another blast and they all flinch.

OUTSIDE. A blast erupts close to the team and they focus all their fire on the area.

MITCHELL: That's the last charge.

The team switch to their handguns, there is no other ammo left.

The insects emerge from beneath the surface, barely intimidated by the lessened gun fire.

SG-1 back up as they squeeze their triggers and all too soon, their weapons are spent.

They all lower their arms.

INSIDE. The cowering I.O.A. representatives are suddenly engulfed in the blue light of the Odyssey's beam. They look up as they disappear.

The insects swarm, mere inches away from the feet of SG-1. As the bugs surge forward, the beam flashes over the team and they are saved in the nick of time.

The R-75 bugs flood over the research outpost. There are seemingly millions of the things.


S.G.C. - BRIEFING ROOM. Landry, Woolsey and SG-1 sit around the table for debriefing.

WOOLSEY: Ms. Shen suffered a broken ankle and has taken an indefinite leave. Mr. LaPierre and Mr. Chapman, meanwhile, have gone back to work none the worse for wear.

LANDRY: What kind of fall out should we be expecting from all of this?

WOOLSEY: Surprisingly minimal. You may face an official reprimand but the I.O.A. recognizes the fact that these were circumstances beyond your control. It may seem like they do an inordinate amount of complaining but off the record, the I.O.A. has nothing but praise for the job you are doing here.

The others around the table do not look convinced by this.

WOOLSEY: Just don't let it go to your heads.

He pushes back in his chair and stands up, fastening his suit jacket.

WOOLSEY: Well, I'm heading back to Washington. Thank you again for the off-world tour, it was -- an eye opening experience.

Carter sympathetically smiles at him.

Landry waits for Woolsey to leave the room before continuing.

LANDRY: While you were gone, we received reports that two more planets had been hit by these bugs. R&D are working on solutions to target these insects without harming other plant and animal life.

Landry takes a deep breath and stands up.

LANDRY: I thought I'd lost you there.

Carter and Mitchell rise with him.

LANDRY: Nice to have you back.

He regards them fondly and then exits the room.

There is a brief pause.

DANIEL: So! Are we, uh, still doing movie night?

CARTER: Yeah, why not?

They all push away from the table.

MITCHELL: Yeah, I've already picked something out.

TEAL'C: Old School.

MITCHELL: Starship Troopers.

TEAL'C: Is it humorous?

MITCHELL: Is it ever.

The smiling team file out of the room.