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Stargate Universe: Trapped (8) (Fanfiction)

Trapped (8)

Artist: easytheregenius
Word Count: ~ 22.100
Summary: When a member of the crew goes missing, most of the stranded point their fingers at the obvious suspect who keeps claiming to be innocent. The crew is forced to work together and surprising alliances are forged to get Eli back.
Characters: Eli Wallace, Nicholas Rush, Everett Young, Camile Wray, Ronald Greer, Matthew Scott, Tamara Johansen, Chloe Armstrong, Sgt. Spencer, Adam Brody, Vanessa James, Dale Volker, Jeremy Franklin, Lisa Park, Airman Becker, Marian Wallace, OCs
Pairing: Chloe/Matt
Rating: PG-13
Spoiler: Air, Darkness, Earth, Time, Life, Human
Setting: Season 1 – after Life
Warnings: Violence, language
Beta: elaiel, who took on the task of beta reading the English version of this. artemis_neith who looked at the very first German version of this years ago – thanks for that and for the criticism that made the story better than it was before.
Disclaimer: I’m not making money with this fanfic. The tv-show Stargate Universe and the characters appearing within it belong to their producers and creators. Any similarities to living or dead persons are purely coincidental and not intended.

Chapter 7
Trapped Masterlist



The wonderful artwork for this story was created by easytheregenius. Please drop a comment for the coverart and banners.

***
***


8.



Compared to Eli's quarters, his laptop was very neat. After Eli had decided to accompany them to Icarus, Nicholas and he had made one more trip to Earth for Eli to pack. Aside from clothes, Eli's laptop had found its way into his bag and thus, onto Destiny. Now, Nicholas was using Eli's laptop to look through the Kino footage of the last few days. There was little chance that Eli's disappearance had anything to do with something Nicholas would find on his laptop but he was ready to take the chance. He was alone in the control room. Most of the others had gathered to eat or were resting. Nicholas had overheard Young and Scott talking about how only a few were still believing that Eli would be found. That made him even more determined. He opened a folder labeled Kinos and found a lot of video files. They had different lengths and Nicholas assumed that Eli just hadn't decided yet if he should put them into his documentary.

He opened one file and saw Dale Volker in the dark, only illuminated by a torch.

"Uh ... Dr. Dale Volker. I'm thirty-four years old. And, uh, despite what you may or may not have heard from … a certain Scottish person, I like to think that I'm a pretty fine astrophysicist. I mean, they don't send you to work on solving the mysteries of the universe on other planets if you're a hack, right? So … that's all I have to say. And we can't all be Mozarts, right? Some of us are … Salieris. Not that ..."

Shaking his head, Nicholas closed the file and opened a few others. Doctor Park, Chloe and Scott introduced themselves to the Kino – the files were unimportant. He closed the folder and gave up on his idea. He should focus on getting the heat detectors online. He was about to close the laptop when a video file in the corner of the desktop caught his attention. It was the only one not in a specified folder, it didn't have a name and Nicholas was curious.

He opened it. Eli looked into the camera.

"Hey, mom, it's the thirty-fourth day on Destiny and ... I knew you had an appointment with the doctor today. I hope you're all right. Maybe you can afford better medication now that the Air Force is paying. I mean, they do, right?"

Nicholas fast-forwarded a few minutes.

"… is okay. I don't know. Sometimes I think I'm kind of bothering him. Okay, I'm pretty sure I'm bothering him." Eli smiled. "Nothing new there, right, mom?" He shook his head. "I thought I could finally do something. You know? Something important. Come to think of it, kinda stupid. The problem is …" He shrugged. "I made a mistake again. Rush and Colonel Young ... I should've never have taken part in their fight. Doesn't matter what I do, it's wrong."

Nicholas narrowed his eyes, focusing on the recording.

"I think you'd be disappointed in me. I'm …"

Someone snapped the lid shut and Nicholas raised his head to look at Chloe's angry face. "That's private, don't you think?" she asked, taking the laptop. "Who do you think you are?" The pressed the computer against her chest and folded her arms.

"Miss Armstrong-"

"You have no right to do this," she interrupted him.

"I was looking for recordings helping us-"

"That this footage won't help you was obvious. That's Eli's private file." With that, she turned away and left the control room.

Nicholas massaged his forehead and brushed a hand through his long hair. A peep coming from the apple core drew him back to his screen to see why the ship was warning him.

***

"Wait."

The red light stopped blinking and Eli activated the radio. "No. Keep doing what you're doing."

One moment later, the door lit up on the screen.

"I think I found where you are. The door is flashing red."

Matt's voice sounded impatient. "Can you open it from there?“


Eli startled awake. "The door," he muttered, an escape idea forming. He wanted to get up, moved too fast and groaned when his ribs protested. Exhaustion overwhelmed him and Eli leaned against the wall and closed his eyes.

He'd almost fallen back asleep when he shook his head and got up cautiously. He shoved his freezing hands in his jacket pockets and clenched his teeth when his ribs protested any movement. He reached the door and pulled his sleeves over his hands before pressing them against the cold metal. Then he put all his energy into trying to open the door by hand. It didn't move but it didn't have to. Eli pushed on, ignoring the pounding headache and the exhaustion. He held his breath as if that would help him to push harder. Finally, he let go of the door and gasped for air. His ribs protested the deep gulps for breath, forcing him to take more shallow breaths. He felt as if he couldn't breathe at all and dark spots were dancing in the dimly-lit room. Eli shook his head and let exhaustion win out. He collapsed into darkness.

***

"The door," Nicholas muttered and looked at the screen with a frown. The light vanished and Nicholas was just about to reach for his radio when another sign lit up on the screen. The energy source was back. Nicholas grabbed his radio with one hand, his other gathered up his note pad and and a torch. "Lt. Scott, I need you and Sgt. Greer now."

"We're in the mess."

"Wait for me."

***

Ronald nodded at Matt and he opened the door. With their weapons at the ready, they entered the room. Ronald grabbed Rush with one arm when he tried to duck past him through the door. "Careful, Doctor."

"There's nothing dangerous here," Rush answered, irritated.

Ronald shrugged.

Matt said, "Not exactly dangerous, no."

Ronald and Rush stared in surprise at what Matt's torch was illuminating.

"Man, that's weird," Ronald said.

Rush replied, "Maybe it's time to inform Colonel Young."

***

Everett looked at Scott. "That's a cooking plate."

Rush crossed his arms. "Yes, Colonel. We can see that."

Camile frowned. "Does it belong to us?"

Scott nodded. "That's one of ours, ma'am. We brought one or two with us from Icarus. When we entered the room, it was switched on."

Rush said, "It's a very small energy source and it showed up on Destiny's systems since a few days."

Camile asked, "What does that mean?"

Ronald answered from his place next to the door, "That means that someone came here to eat stolen rations."

Rush added, "I noticed the energy source even before Eli went missing."

Camile shook her head. "We always eat our soup cold."

Scott nodded. "Practical reasons. We can't cook for eighty people on only two cooking plates and we don't have any pots. But the protein soup can be eaten warm as well."

Rush took out his note pad. "Sgt. Becker should check our rations. We have to see how much was stolen."

"It can't have been too much or we would have noticed."

Camile put her hands on her hips. "We have to find whoever is responsible."

Rush nodded. "Of course. That would be good if we want to find Eli."

Everett and Camile looked at him questioningly.

Scott crossed his arms over his weapon. "Sir, ma'am, Greer thinks that whoever used this plate is responsible for Eli's disappearance. Maybe Eli caught him. Doctor Rush and I agree."

Everett rubbed his forehead. "The cooking plate's here ... where's the thief?"

Rush said, "Maybe on his way to steal something or he already ate, and went to get something. In which case he'll already have seen us and won't return."

Everett's lips thinned. "This is becoming a nightmare. If we tell everyone that someone is stealing from us …"

"I doubt that you have another choice, Colonel."

Everett sighed. "Me, too."

***

Sitting in the mess hall, Harry rubbed his chin, pretending to read. He'd just switched the cooking plate on when Becker had called him over the radio. When he'd been on his way back to his hiding place, some rations in his pocket, he'd seen Young and Wray take the same route. Only a few minutes later, his suspicion had been confirmed. They knew now that someone was stealing food. He tried to figure out what they would do next. If they wanted to search the quarters, he didn't have to fear a thing. He wasn't as stupid as Spencer and left his stolen goods lying around. He only took what he needed. He was safe. They wouldn't find out it had been him and that meant they wouldn't find Wallace.

"Jennings," someone startled him out of his thoughts and raised his head to look at Becker. "What's going on with you, man? We'll have to give out rations in a few minutes and you're just sitting here, day-dreaming."

Airman Harry Jennings nodded. "Sure. Sorry." He gifted Becker with a small smile and got up.

***

Chloe switched off her iPod and leaned back in the chair standing near the window in a corner of the observation platform. Lisa Park was sitting at one of the tables, working. They were the only ones here. Chloe stared at the shadows the FTL travel was painting across the floor and sighed deeply. Thirty-one hours were too long. She startled when suddenly, Young's voice boomed through the ship, "This is Young. I wanna see everybody in the 'Gate room. ASAP."

Lisa looked at Chloe, her eyebrows raised questioningly. "What's going on?"

"I don't know," she answered, getting up.

***

"We know now that someone here spent his team stealing food," Everett announced from his place on the stairs leading down towards the Stargate, and watched the present people breaking out into hushed conversations. Greer and Scott were standing at the bottom of the stairs, their hands on their weapons but the rifles pointed at the floor. Young didn't think that anybody would be stupid enough to make a run for it – where would they go? - but Camile and he agreed that they should be more aggressive. Camile glanced at him from her place beside Rush who was engrossed in his notes. Lieutenant James and TJ were standing near them. Everett added, "And we assume that Eli's disappearance has something to do with it."

Camile's gaze wandered through the room. Everett knew that she was good at reading people. If someone would act weird, she was bound to see it.

"I offer you to speak up and reveal yourself. I'll be in my quarters for the next hour. If someone should feel the need to come and talk with me about it, I'll consider a lighter punishment." He looked around warningly. "And I want everyone here to know one thing – if Eli's hurt and won't get the help he needs because someone is acting cowardly and egoistical, the consequences will be hard. Because we will find out who's responsible." He let the words hang in the air. The 'Gate room was deathly silent. "One hour," Everett repeated, descending the stairs. Nodding at Rush and Camile, he left the 'Gate room.


Chapter 9
Trapped Masterlist

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