[identity profile] scarlet-gryphon.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] sga_flashfic
Title: Crossing the Rubicon
Author: [livejournal.com profile] scarlet_gryphon
Word Count: ~2843
Rating: PG-13/T
Notes: Set in my Stars Above (Sentient!Atlantis) 'Verse. Contains spoilers for Season Five of Atlantis, but mostly for "Enemy at the Gate".

Summary: Never Give Up. Never Surrender.

It was three weeks after Atlantis landed on Earth that the senior members of the Expedition learned that the IOA had, in its infinite wisdom, decided not to send Atlantis back to the Pegasus Galaxy, but would rather move it to a secure location off the coast of Alaska, and then eventually off-world to a neutral planet. There was, of course, the expected initial outcry of anger against said decision, but eventually it simmered down to the occasional muttering against the IOA and the Powers that Be. Two days after the announcement went out, the four members of Atlantis' premiere Gate team met in a secluded room deep in the lower levels of the under-city.

Once all were present, a soft shimmer of lights announced the arrival of Miranda, the City's resident semi-Ascended Ancient Guardian. She waved one hand idly and the Ancient version of a white-noise generator kicked on, but this one also blocked any electronic surveillance that might be directed towards the room. It was a slim chance, but no one in the room was willing to risk it. Miranda looked around the room, which had once been a recreational area, and then sighed.

'Shall we begin?' she asked, taking a seat at a small round table set up in one corner of the room. The others followed her example, Rodney settling with a small huff of annoyance that was quickly cut off when John gave him a look.

'Very well,' Miranda continued on. 'As we all know, your IOA has decided not to allow Atlantis to return to Pegasus. This cannot be allowed to happen. The work that has been done there must continue to go on. I was worried this might occur, so I've come up with a plan that I hope you will agree with.' She paused, looking at each of the team's faces before activating a holo-display set into the table. 'Before the Daedalus came at the end of the Siege, I know some people talked about setting up Atlantis as a sort of colony, independent of Earth.'

'Well, yes, but that was purely hypothetical,' Rodney said, frowning slightly. 'What are you proposing?'

'That we enact that plan,' Miranda replied, the display shifting from a general diagram of the City to a list of the personnel who came on the original Expedition, minus, of course, those who had died within that first year away from Earth. 'Atlantis was never meant to stay on Earth; that's why there's an outpost in Antarctica. Oh, there would be the occasional visit, but once Atlantis came to Pegasus, the Ancients decided that was where the City was meant to be.'

'Okay, but how are you gonna get Atlantis back to Pegasus?' Ronon asked.

Miranda gave him a small smile. 'Well, that part's easy. The hard part is finding a planet to have a base on. We can't return to New or Old Lantea, but we need a planet that doesn't have a population on it. If it has a Stargate, the City's Stargate will overrule that one, so there's no need to worry about that. Obviously, we cannot just take the City and go to any planet without checking it over. That's where you four come in.' The hologram changed once more, showing a Jumper and what looked like the Gate in Atlantis. 'For as long as Atlantis is on Earth, the City's Gate will supersede the one in Cheyenne Mountain, as you all know. Well, I plan on taking advantage of that.

'I will simply take over the control systems of the Stargate, locking out anyone trying to dial in or out. You four will use a Jumper and go through the Gate to Pegasus, since we have the power to do so.' She held up a hand to stop Rodney from speaking. 'No, it won't drain too much power; since Atlantis uses a Pegasus-style Gate, it costs less energy.'

'Oh, like calling someone who has the same cell company as you,' John said in understanding. Miranda gave him a slightly nonplussed look, but nodded anyways.

'Sure. The Jumper will be stocked with as many supplies as it can hold, but once those are gone, you'll have to barter for your own food with the inhabitants of Pegasus.' Miranda told them. 'When you find a suitable planet, contact me using this.' She handed Teyla an odd looking box. It seemed to be made out of translucent crystal, much like that used in most of the Ancients' technology, with a series of small buttons on one side. 'This is a locator and secure radio, as well as a compact power source so you may dial Earth. It can only be tracked by specialized sensors here in the City. Once activated, it'll tell me your coordinates. I'll put those into the hyperdrive, and then leave Earth behind for good.'

'Okay, so you've told us how you're going to get Atlantis off of Earth, but what about the people who might want to go back to Pegasus?' Rodney asked. 'I mean, I'm all for getting back, but I'm not the only one who can run the City, as much as I hate to say it.'

'That's the second part of my plan,' Miranda said. 'Once you four are safely in the Pegasus Galaxy and I have made my announcement, I will shut down all systems save for the cloak and life support. If I remember correctly, Generals O'Neill and Landry, as well as key members of the IOA, are to arrive in the City tomorrow. Once they're all in one room, I'll announce the independence of Atlantis, and then tell them my terms. After all, if they can't do anything with the City, why keep it around?'

'This plan sounds good,' Teyla began hesitantly, 'but what of those who have families here on Earth?'

'It's a free choice,' Miranda said. 'Those who want to can come and bring their families if they like, and if anyone tries to stop them from doing so against their will, I have a plan for that as well.'

'Which would be?'

Miranda smiled. 'A woman must have some secrets, Doctor McKay. Trust me when I say I've got it covered. Now then, shall we get started?'


'What do you mean, "Sheppard and his team have gone off in a Jumper"?!' General Landry barked, startling the young lieutenant who had been chosen to relay the news.

'That's just it, sir,' the lieutenant replied, trying to keep the nervous squeak out of his voice and failing miserably. 'Reports from the personnel in Atlantis said that the Colonel and his team commandeered a Jumper and went through the Gate. They, um-' here the lieutenant gulped nervously. 'They had painted "Wraith Hunter" on the sides of the Jumper, sir. Er, according to the reports, anyways.'

'The IOA is going to have a field day with this one,' Landry sighed, wearily rubbing at his temples with both hands. 'Dismissed, lieutenant.' The lieutenant saluted and then hightailed it as quickly as decorum allowed, shutting the door behind him, leaving Landry to his thoughts.

Hank sighed and picked up the phone, hitting the speed dial.

'Jack? We've got a problem.'


The assembled representatives of the IOA milled around the large meeting room that had been set aside for them, some idly eating a few of the pastries and fresh fruits that had been set out for them. Jack and Hank watched them for a little bit before biting the bullet and entering into the fray. The second the two generals cleared the doorway, all entrances to the room closed with a finality that neither Air Force man liked.

'What's going on?' demanded Quentin Fairfield, one of the representatives from Great Britain. 'Why are we being held here?'

'Don't look at me,' Jack said mildly. 'I didn't do anything.'

'No, I did.'

There were a few startled gasps at the voice coming from all around the room, and then several more when Miranda appeared. She wore long white robes with flowing sleeves, into which she had tucked her hands. 'Please, sit down,' she said, gesturing briefly at the long table in the center of the room before taking a seat at its head.

With a few nervous looks from a few of the IOA members, the assembled representatives from Earth found their seats. 'Who are you?' Fairfield demanded, still looking rather perturbed at their current situation. 'And how and why did you lock us in this room?'

Miranda smiled tightly. 'I am Miranda, Guardian of Atlantis,' she told them. 'As for one of your other questions, I've locked the doors because I need to talk to all of you about something, and I didn't want any of you leaving abruptly before I could finish speaking with you.'

'Would any of this have to do with Colonel Sheppard and his team vanishing through the Gate with a Jumper yesterday?'

Miranda gave Jack a slight smile. 'Yes, it does,' she replied. 'As of right now, I declare the City of Atlantis to be completely independent of Earth's control.' As she spoke, the lights flickered and dimmed for a moment and then returned to full strength once more. 'I have now taken full control of all of the systems in the City. The City will be returning permanently to the Pegasus Galaxy as soon as those who wish to go with it are back within its walls and a home planet has been found.'

A cacophony of angry shouts and yells rose up at this pronouncement, but Miranda seemed completely composed to the two Generals. After the hubbub died down, Hank spoke up.

'Assuming we allow this-'

'There's no assumption, General Landry,' Miranda said, a steely tone in her voice. 'I'm afraid your governments have no choice in this decision. A message has been sent out to all members of the Atlantis Expedition, both former and current, inviting them to join us. Should any be denied this invitation by means of force, it will not go well.'

'You can't do this!'

Miranda turned to Fairfield, who had somehow been elected the spokesperson of the IOA representatives, a cold smile on her face that reminded Jack all too well of some of the more dangerous Goa'uld System Lords. Fairfield seemed to wrapped up in his indignation to notice this, and didn't take heed of his fellow IOA members and continued on with his rant.

'You can't just force people to come with you,' Fairfield snapped. 'These people have lives that you can't control and-'

'Just like your IOA has forced the people of Atlantis to stay on Earth, even though they wish to return to the home and the allies they've made?' Miranda countered, a dangerous edge to her voice. She stood up, her chair moving back as she got to her feet. 'And I'm not forcing anyone to come. It is merely an invitation to continue the work that you, as a people, started. The choice is entirely their own free will. If they want to bring their families with them, then that is their decision. Once we are settled in Pegasus, we will contact Earth. Do not bother in attempting to trace our location; any and all devices with tracking capabilities will not be of use to you.

'Should we choose to, we will open negotiations for trade for various items and perhaps even information. After all, quite a few of your recent scientific and medical advances have come from the information in the Atlantis database and planets in the Pegasus Galaxy. I will transfer control of Stargate operations to Cheyenne Mountain until all teams that are off-world return. Once the last team is back, I will take control of all Gate operations until Colonel Sheppard and his team contact me. That's all I have to say to the IOA; please feel free to relay this information to your governments. I will return you to your teleportation safe-house in San Francisco now. Have a good day.'

With a nonchalant wave of her hand, Miranda teleported the members of the IOA to San Francisco, keeping Hank and Jack behind, as she wanted to continue speaking with them.

'Now, about those members of your military who may want to rejoin us in the Pegasus Galaxy...'


'Okay, honestly, this is like the fifteenth planet we've checked out.' Rodney griped before the Jumper entered the Gate on the planet the team was using as a temporary base until they found a suitable new home. The resident population of the planet lived some way away from the Gate and they didn't tend to visit it very often, so the team wasn't really in any danger of being discovered. John had cloaked the Jumper before they left base camp, so the small ship wasn't visible to the naked eye.

This turned out to not really matter much, as the only land-based lifeforms that the Jumper's scanners picked up were no larger than a housecat, and there weren't any signs of civilization. They'd found the planet's address in the Jumper's database; Rodney had told the others that he thought Miranda must've put the list into the Jumper's computer. When asked, he said that he didn't recognize any of the addresses, so they must've been hidden away in the Atlantis database until Miranda had uploaded them.

'So far, so good,' John commented, pulling up a general area map on the HUD. 'I'm going to fly higher to see if there's any- Wait a minute.'

The map shifted and a stream of Ancient scrolled across the top as what seemed to be just the beginning of a coastline started to the east. John maneuvered towards it, the indicator on the map moving along with the Jumper it represented. Ahead of them, the sun shone brightly down on a blue-gray ocean, the tips of the waves crashing against the shore shimmering vibrantly in the light. The trees on the rapidly receding mainland reminded Rodney strongly of pine trees, making him recall the Pacific Northwest and the small town in British Columbia where he'd grown up. Of course, quite a few of the planets in both the Pegasus and Milky Way Galaxies had similar environments because of the Ancients and their terraforming habits, but still, it was nice to see something familiar.

'Any energy readings?'

John's voice tore Rodney from his contemplation of the Ancients' science, making him look around briefly before he called up the appropriate display. 'No, there aren't. According to the information that was with the address, no one's ever lived here, not even when the Ancients were in Atlantis. They put the Gate here because they thought it might be useful someday.'

'Looks like they were right,' Ronon commented with an approving nod. 'It looks good. Lots of open water and land.'

'We should inform Miranda that we have found our new home, then,' Teyla said. 'Hopefully, she has gathered all those who wished to return and is ready to join us.'

'Let's hope so,' John replied, turning the Jumper back towards the mainland and the Gate.


The Gate activated with its customary roar like a giant clearing its throat, the kawoosh spilling out and then settling back into its normal quiescent state. Miranda looked up from her conversation with Carson, who had been among the first to return her message, saying that he'd be more than willing to join the Lantean colonists. There'd been a few scientists who'd had troubles getting to San Francisco, as well as some soldiers, but Miranda had taken care of that by simply teleporting them and who or whatever they'd wanted to come with them, targeting them with the City's sensors and then bringing them to Atlantis.

'Sheppard to Atlantis. Repeat, Sheppard to Atlantis. Come in, Atlantis.'

'We're here, Colonel. Go ahead.' Miranda replied, a smile lighting up her face as she heard John's voice.

'We've found our new home. Ready to come join us? We've picked out the curtains and everything.'

'How thoughtful,' Miranda said with a laugh. 'Feel free to send the coordinates whenever you're ready.'


A beep sounded from one of the consoles, telling Miranda that the coordinates had been received.

'Information received. We'll see you soon, Colonel. Hold tight.'

'Will do. Sheppard out.'

Miranda smiled as the Gate deactivated and then she activated the city-wide PA system.

'Attention all Lanteans. We are about to activate the intergalactic hyperdrive. Please go to your assigned stations and prepare for takeoff. Thank you for your swift compliance. Section leaders, please radio when your assigned groups are ready.'

She waited until all of the section leaders had reported in, and then activated the City's engines. With a rumble, the City lifted off, its cloak swapped out for the shield. The fact that the governments of Earth probably didn't want Atlantis' existence to be known wasn't lost on the newly proclaimed colonists, but honestly, not one of them cared. They were going home at last.


Stargate Atlantis Flashfiction

April 2017


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