Hi! Some of you know me, some of you don't, but as I've been hanging out
at this board for more than the occassional peek lately, I figured I'd go
ahead and put my stories here, too... They're already on the archives and
some of them are on Christina's page and a few on Kat's, so they're
getting around. But, I figured I'd go ahead and put 'em here as well for
anyone who's interested. Any comments (good or bad) are more than welcome
and I respond to all e-mail. BTW, I made up this very first character
before I "met" Christina so it has no bearing on anything. ;-) Also, sorry
you Sam fans...I'm a die-hard Al-coholic. So...in many of my stories Sam
not only takes a while to show up, he may not have a crucial part. But
just hang on..he's here... Enjoy.

January, 1997
Los Angeles, CA

  Christina Meth sat back from her desk and rubbed her eyes. She had been
sitting there fiddling with equations, deriving, converting, and computing
for almost five hours now. The one thing she wanted more than anything was a
massage. If there was anyone remaining in the building at this hour, she
would have sought them out to get one, but all people on normal hours had
long since left for home. The dark, dank feel of the room she was in began to
irritate her and she walked abandoned it to go outside into the cool air. A
strong wind lifted her hair and swirled it around her face, obscuring her
vision. She closed her eyes and breathed in the fresh scent of the out of
doors. It was an incredible thing, she reflected, when Los Angeles air seemed
fresh and clean, a sure sign that she was spending too much time in the
office again.
  She had a meeting tomorrow. Something about finances, no doubt. Her
apprentice did all the corresponding with her sponsors; she let the woman do
her job without taking any particular interest in it herself. Her
apprentice....she ought to be in the building still. She rarely left before
Christina herself did. Employee loyalties, she presumed, not that she was all
that familiar with the concept. Her own employers were infrequent visitors in
her labs.
  Christina entered the building again and looked into the small room
adjoining her office. A figure lay slumped over her desk, supposedly asleep.
Christina didn't have the heart to wake her. Every so often, the scientist
did come up for air and notice what was going on around her, contrary to
popular belief. Besides, she was going to find something worthwhile to do,
something that would make a difference. And once she did, there would be no
need for people to look down on her. What good was it to be a genius if you
didn't use your talents to help other people?
  She abandoned the plainly exhaused woman and returned to her own sorry
excuse of an office. She sat down at her desk and pulled out a magazine from
the top drawer. Pushing aside pages of figures, she spread out the magazine
on the desk top. Despite her care in handling it, it still showed creases
from common usage and she smoothed them gently. Several other articles fell
from the pages: newspaper clippings, print outs, and pictures. She pushed
them out of the way and read the magazine again. Here was something to aspire
to, really. She wasn't certain her sponsors agreed, but she was hoping to
persuade them to see it her way. You couldn't take without giving something
back. That is, if the man eventually had. The article was a little vague on
that point, as all of the articles were. Her hands sifted through the
newspaper clippings until she found the one she wanted. It seemed that Dr.
Samuel Beckett disappeared off the face of the earth in early March, 1995.
Almost two years ago. What was really odd was that Dr. Beckett's colleague
and friend Admiral Albert Calavicci could not be reached for comment.
  She had her own set of theories on the matter, not the least of which was
that he was doing what he had set out to do in the first place. How exactly
what he was doing was benefiting anyone was one of the many matters on which
she and her sponsors differed. Perhaps he had been silenced or perhaps he had
given up on the prospect and was working on something else not nearly
spectacular enough to catch the public eye, but she doubted it. She may be
dense, but no-one was _that_  dense.
  Christina pushed the articles back into the drawer and closed it softly.
She really didn't care about what had happened to him in the long run. She
supposed the same thing happened to him that would happen to any man of his
intellect: either he was contolling the government or they were controlling
him. But it wasn't her concern. She was more interested in his fascination
with time travel. She had years ago read everything of his there was to read
on the topic, but she could never quite get it. Unlike he, she had limited
her talents to one area: quantum physics. She would spend hours upon hours
trying to figure out his equations, but he often performed incredible leaps
of logic that were difficult to follow. He apparantly didn't write down what
was obvious to him. In other words, there was a lot he didn't write down.
  A noise from behind her caused her to turn in her chair.
  "Still here?" her accomplice asked, rubbing her eyes. She slipped on a coat
and headed for the door. "Well, I am going to do the unthinkable and leave
while you're still here, if you don't mind. Four days in a row of this is
just too much."
  Christina laughed softly. "Of course. There's really no need for you to
stay, especially if you're just going to fall asleep on the job."
  The words were light and teasing, but the woman heard the underlying
seriousness Christina could never seem to shake. It unnerved her and made it
very difficult to be around the scientist. "Sorry," she felt compelled to
say. "I'll see you on Monday? I hope you don't need me this weekend. Oh, I'm
assuming you're working." It was a statement, not a question.
  "Naturally. So much to do so little....time," she responded anyhow.
  The woman was slowly edging her way out the door. "Right. Well, see you
  "Sure," Christina said to empty air. "See you then."

September, 2000
Stallions Gate, NM

  Al Calavicci walked the halls of the project slowly. He was feeling a
little run-down as of late and then last thing he was in the mood to do was
to hear the proposal for another dead-end retrieval program. But he'd said
time and time again that he wanted to hear as soon as anyone got anything and
he couldn't change his mind now. Besides, he really did want to know, he just
didn't want to trudge through the administrative drugery to get the funds and
personel to test the theory.
  He rounded the corner and almost ran into Tina, which was a pleasant
surprise. "Where are you going in such a hurry, Al?" she asked in smooth,
silky tones.
  He slid an arm around her waist in comfortable familiarity. "Aw, Sammy Jo
has a new theory she wants to run by me. Sam landed yet?"
  She snuggled a bit closer. "Nah. He's only been gone for about two days.
Hopefully we've got a couple days left."
  He kissed her lightly and released her. "Well....I had better go. I've got
some paperwork to get out of the way, but are we clear for dinner?"
  "Sure. I made us reservations at some classy restaruant in town. Can't
remember the name, but it's supposed to have a nice dance floor." She looked
at him wistfully. "It's been a while since you took me dancing."
  He grinned, pulling out a cigar. "Well, we'll have to do something about
that. Talk to you later honey."
  She walked away and he paused a moment to offer an appreciative glance
before lighting his cigar and taking off in the opposite direction.
  Al always felt faintly uncomfortable talking to Sammy Jo. He spent an
unusual amount of time with Donna, though, and knew her well enough that he
had made the decision to keep Sam's secret from the both of them. Now, he
listened patiently as Sam's daughter outlined her new theory. He had to
admit, as he listened, that it was certainly the most plausable solution he'd
heard so far, but it was still, in part, way over his head. He gave nods
where he thought appropriate, supporting her desire to get Sam home if
nothing else.
  "Well? When can we get started?" she asked breathlessly, having finished
her explanation.
  "I'll get the paperwork filled out in the morning and we can hopefully
start within the week," he responded.
  She smiled and he was about to rattle off a list of forms he needed her
signature for when Ziggy interruped with her usual lack of consideration.
  "Admiral? There was a message left for you in your office. I think you
ought to see it. It sounds serious."
  "What kind of message, Ziggy?"
  There was a small pause. "Well, if I didn't know better, I'd say it was
almost a ransom note. Is there something that _I_ don't know about?" she
asked in a manner that clearly indicated her disgust that he could be
involved in something of which she was clueless.
  "Ransom?!" he asked, startled onto his feet. Sammy Jo moved uneasily at his
elbow. "What do you mean ransom?"
  "I do believe you need your ears cleaned out. Or do I need to repeat it
again?" Ziggy's voice sounded superior and injured.
  Al knew better. "No, Ziggy, you need to repeat that about as much as you
need to be more assertive with your opinions. I'm on my way up to my office.
We can talk again there." He gave a little sigh and turned to Sam's daughter.
"Sammy Jo, we'll talk later, okay? And I'll still see about getting that
stuff filled out tomorrow. I don't know what this is all about, but it is
obviously someone's sick idea of a practical joke, or a case of mistaken
identity." He patted her lightly on the shoulder.
  "No problem. There's always bugs to be worked out in the theory, and I'll
just work on that. I have a good feeling about this one." He smiled but
didn't comment; she said that every time.
  Up in his office, Al examined the computer print-out of the message Ziggy
had taken. He sat down in his chair and frowned.

    Admiral Albert Calavicci: You will meet us at the warehouse off of
Plantation Drive in Santa Fe at exactly 11:00 PM tomorrow night. You will
enter the building alone and unarmed. We have a hostage and she will be
executed in the case of deciet. Thank you for your time.

  "'Thank you for your time'?" he mouthed in utter amazement. Had it not been
such a serious security breach, he might have laughed. And then, aloud,
"Ziggy, what the heck _is_ this?"
  "Admiral, I informed you earlier that it is a ransome note. The message was
recieved through a fax and the call could not be traced. That is all I know."
  The first thought that ran through his mind, aside from the obvious, was
that he had no idea who could possibly want to speak with him so badly that
they thought a hostage was necessary. Had somebody got wind of their project?
And if they had, why all the fuss? He realized with a start that he also
didn't know what they wanted him for. He shook his head and stared at the
wall. "Ziggy? Put a call through to Admiral Payne. I don't know why I was
sent this note, but I certainly can't ignore it. And I also can't just go to
a warehouse to help a potentially non-existant hostage for no apparant
reason." He sighed. "Let's just wait and see if she has any ideas."