SGA 1.17 "Letters From Pegasus" Transcript

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1.17 "Letters From Pegasus"

Episode Guide

SGA 1.17 "Letters From Pegasus" Episode Guide

Précis

Having learned that the entire Wraith armada is headed towards the city, the team decides to use their remaining power to send Stargate Command a message containing information about the Wraith threat and the well-being of everyone on Atlantis. As most of the team are recording messages to their loves ones, Sheppard and Teyla embark on a mission that takes them directly to the Wraith army!

Guide | Transcript

Transcript

PREVIOUSLY ON STARGATE ATLANTIS

[Scenes from 1.16 The Brotherhood are shown.]

TEASER

EXT—ATLANTIS, DAY

INT—ATLANTIS BRIEFING ROOM

WEIR
Well, we knew they were coming. At least now we know when.
SHEPPARD
That's something.
MCKAY
That's something?
SHEPPARD
It means there's still time, Rodney. There's no reason to panic…yet.
TEYLA
Where there is time, there's hope.
WEIR
Agreed. So, recommendations?
BECKETT
Other than panic?
WEIR
Other than panic, yes.
FORD
I realize this might not be cool, but we should consider M7G-677.
WEIR
As a possible evacuation site?
FORD
No, ma'am. I'm suggesting we take their ZPM.
WEIR
Their only means of protection from the Wraith? A planet populated mostly by children?
MCKAY
He raises a valid point. We've already established that the ZPM is nearly depleted, but it could be of some limited use to us.
FORD
You asked for suggestions. It's a matter of survival.
WEIR
I see. Well, we're not quite there yet, and as long as I'm in charge, we will never be there.
TEYLA
I agree, Dr. Weir. If this is to be our end, it is best we face it with both dignity and honor.
MCKAY
To that end, I actually have an idea…in addition to panic.
SHEPPARD
Let's hear it.
MCKAY
It's really a long shot, but I think it's most likely worth the effort. Of course, it'll mostly be my effort, so—
SHEPPARD
What is it?
MCKAY
I think we can send a message back to Earth through the Stargate.
BECKETT
Excuse me?
WEIR
I thought we didn't have enough power.
MCKAY
Not to send a person, no. We'd never be able to maintain the wormhole long enough… But I think if we were able to tie together all of our power generating capabilities, we might—and I emphasize might—be able to establish a wormhole long enough to send a message.
SHEPPARD
How much time are we talking about?
MCKAY
Well, approximately 1.3 seconds, give or take.
BECKETT
That's not much time.
FORD
Time enough to say S.O.S.
MCKAY
Don't be so analog. 1.3 seconds is more than enough time to send a message if it's in the form of a high compression data burst. Now, I helped refine the encoding for the U.S. Air Force a few years back. Colonel Carter should be able to decipher it on the other side.
SHEPPARD
You're suggesting this now?
MCKAY
Because it probably won't work, and there's a very good chance it could overload our naquadah generators in the process.
SHEPPARD
Well, then we can't take the risk. No power, we won't have a chance in hell.
MCKAY
There are three Wraith hive ships on the way, Major. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Besides, I've spent the last few days working out ways of minimizing the risk.
WEIR
Assuming it's possible, how much information could we send?
MCKAY
Everything. I mean, mission reports from all the senior staff, a ton of stuff on Atlantis, things we've learned in Pegasus…
FORD
All that. One second?
SHEPPARD
1.3.
MCKAY
You jest, but if I can finesse the compression ratios, you'll be looking for things to add.
WEIR
Do it.
MCKAY
Doing it.

[The leave the briefing room.]

INT—GATE ROOM

[Sheppard stops Weir.]

SHEPPARD
Elizabeth, you realize that if Stargate Command was able to send help—
WEIR
I know. They would have. But still, we have a responsibility to report what we've learned here, about Atlantis about the Ancients.
SHEPPARD
The Wraith.
WEIR
Exactly. We have to warn Earth.
SHEPPARD
Even if it's the last thing we do?
WEIR
Especially if it's the last thing we do.

END TEASER

OPENING CREDITS

EXT—ATLANTIS, DAY

INT—CONTROL ROOM

[Zelenka briefs the situation at a large screen.]

WEIR
They don't seem threatening as dots on a screen, do they?
SHEPPARD
Which is why we need to do recon and see what we're up against first hand.
WEIR
How?
ZELENKA
I've been tracking their progress. The Wraith ships apparently go in and out of hyperspace periodically, either because their hyperspace technology is limited, or—
SHEPPARD
Or they're stopping to feed along the way.
ZELENKA

(indicating on screen)

The point is, the pattern is predictable. I can guess with some certainty that they'll be making stops here, here, and here.
WEIR
Even so, those ships are light years away. How do you expect to reach them by puddle jumper?
SHEPPARD
We fly to a Stargate on a route that Zelenka thinks they're going to drop out of hyperspace and we watch them pass by.
WEIR
That's good.
SHEPPARD
You know, I have my moments. Teyla and I were just deciding which planet to go to.
TEYLA

(indicating on screen)

I am familiar with the people of this world. Their Stargate is in the open and so accessible by ship.
WEIR
And you think you can remain undetected by the Wraith as they go by your position?
SHEPPARD
Stealth mode. They won't even know we're there.
WEIR
Okay, go, get what intel you can, and get back before Rodney sends his message. I need the both of you here.
SHEPPARD
Won't even stop at the duty free.

[Sheppard and Teyla leave.]

INT—GATE ROOM

[The Stargate opens. The Jumper Bay opens, and a Jumper descends into the Gate room.]

WEIR

(into comms)

In the off chance you get the idea to take the Wraith ships on yourself, Major, I am hereby ordering you not to.

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

SHEPPARD

(into comms)

Believe me, you don't have to.
WEIR

(over comms)

Still…
SHEPPARD

(into comms)

Don't take on an alien armada singlehandedly. Understood.

INT—GATE ROOM

[The Jumper goes through the Gate.]

EXT—FIELD ON ORIN'S PLANET, DAY

[Villagers work in the dirt with wooden tools. A young boy runs up to an older man.]

ORIN'S SON
Father, Teyla's here!

[They see Teyla and Sheppard walking toward them accompanied by other villagers.]

ORIN

(happily)

Teyla!
TEYLA
Orin…it has been many days.
ORIN
Too many. Look at you. You're so different.
TEYLA
Much has changed since my last visit. This is Major John Sheppard. And Orin.
SHEPPARD
Pleased to meet you.
ORIN
The harvest is still months away.
TEYLA
Yes, I know. We have not come to trade, but to deliver a warning. We have reason to believe the Wraith may be on their way.

[Orin is alarmed.]

SHEPPARD
We don't know that for a fact but we're about to go and find out.
ORIN
Yes. It seems they're awakening everywhere.
TEYLA
You should tell your people to take precautions in case they do come.
ORIN
I will, but you know as well as I do, Teyla, that the Wraith will track us down wherever we go. There will be no escape.
SHEPPARD
What about through the Stargate?
ORIN
The cullings are taking place on many worlds. None are safe. Even we have taken in refugees.

[He puts his arm around the young boy who called him Father.]

TEYLA
If they do come, stay far from the Stargate. Take your family to the far tree line there and wait for us.
SHEPPARD
Teyla…
TEYLA
One family, Major. That is all I ask.
SHEPPARD
I'm sorry, Orin, I can't make that promise.
TEYLA
It will be the very least we can do.
SHEPPARD
If there's time.
TEYLA
Then we must hurry.

[Sheppard and Teyla leave.]

ORIN
Children, we must prepare.

INT—BRIEFING ROOM

WEIR
All right, we have our city specs, mission reports, and tactical assessments all ready to go. What else?
MCKAY
Well, I've included a ton of data that we've been able to decipher from the Ancient database.
WEIR
Really? That is incredible!
MCKAY
Well, the algorithm I've devised is extraordinarily efficient… Yes.
BECKETT
Oh, please.
WEIR
It must be in order to fit all that data into 1.3 seconds.
MCKAY
.3 seconds, actually.
WEIR
We have a whole extra second to fill?
MCKAY
Mm, a whole extra one, yes.
WEIR
Is it enough to include personal messages?
MCKAY
Uh…sure. I mean, several hours of video. Much more if it was strictly audio.
WEIR
I think it'd do wonders for morale. Especially now.
FORD
I could tell my grandma what I've been up to all this time.
WEIR
Well, if your grandmother had security clearance, yes, you could. But for now, you can tell her that you're well and that you miss her.
MCKAY
This is all very charming, but I have work to do. Shouldn't I, um…
WEIR

(to Ford)

Lieutenant… Maybe you'd like to handle this. Give everybody a few minutes on camera to send a personal message to their loved ones.
FORD
I'd love to, ma'am.
WEIR
Off you go.

[Everyone gets up.]

MCKAY

(to Weir)

As soon as Zelenka and I can get Jumper Four's engines tied into the grid, we should be able to do low power dry run.
WEIR
Good. Rodney?
MCKAY
Mm?
WEIR
You don't want to send a message to anyone?
MCKAY
You know what? Maybe with all my spare time, I'll just record a message myself… Hmm? You?
WEIR
Yes.
MCKAY
Good, good.

EXT—SPACE ABOVE ORIN'S PLANET

[The Puddle Jumper flies around the planet and cloaks itself.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

SHEPPARD
This wasn't supposed to be a rescue mission.
TEYLA
Orin was a good friend of my father.
SHEPPARD
And I agreed to warn him.
TEYLA
If someone close to your family, a dear friend, was in danger of being taken by the Wraith, would you have not done the same?
SHEPPARD
Not if it jeopardized the mission.
TEYLA
So in fighting the Wraith, we are to give up that which makes us different from them?
SHEPPARD
I agreed to stop and pick him up if there was time, but only if there was time. I'd like to be saving everyone in the damn galaxy if we could.
TEYLA
One man and his children are not every person.
SHEPPARD
I agreed to help if there was time. You can only fight the battles you can win.

[In front of the, a hyperspace window opens, and two Wraith hive ships emerge. They fly over the Jumper.]

SHEPPARD
Whoa.

EXT—SPACE ABOVE ORIN'S PLANET

[More cruisers drop out of hyperspace and move slowly toward the planet.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

SHEPPARD
Let me get this thing turned around.

EXT—SPACE ABOVE ORIN'S PLANET

[Darts leave the cruisers in large numbers.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

TEYLA

(alarmed)

They're heading for the planet.

EXT—ATLANTIS, DAY

INT—ATLANTIS MEETING ROOM

[Ford tries to get the video recorder working.]

FORD
Okay, recording. Plenty of battery. So why am I not seeing anything? Oh…stupid.

[He removes the lens cap and sits in front of the camera.]

FORD
Okay. Hi, Grandma, Grandpa. It's me, Aiden, obviously. I'm talking to you from a place far, far from home. I'm good, though. You don't have to worry. Life here is pretty routine.

[He flashes back to various violent occurrences he's witnessed.]

FORD
I'm hoping that I'll be able to get home sometime soon. But, you know, if I'm stuck here a while, I want you to know that I'm good. I'm doing things, I'm seeing things I never thought I'd see.

[He flashes back to Dart attacks and other events.]

FORD

I wish I could tell you all about it. Who knows? One day, maybe I'll be able to, but I want you both to know…
(tapping his heart)

that you're right here. Always. All the time.

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[Sheppard is piloting the Jumper down the surface.]

SHEPPARD
I'm sorry, Teyla. Even flying full out, we're just ahead of the armada. I can't risk putting down for Orin or his family.
TEYLA
I see.
SHEPPARD
I'll take us out of stealth mode for the pass through. Dial the gate.

[Teyla starts to dial the DHD for the planet-side Stargate, which is dead ahead. The Stargate activates early.]

SHEPPARD
Hang on. Incoming wormhole.

EXT—FIELD ON ORIN'S PLANET, DAY

[The Puddle Jumper turns away from the Stargate at the last moment, speeding past it.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

TEYLA
I have heard stories of the Wraith dialing in to prevent their victims from using the Stargate as a means of escape.
SHEPPARD
So we're stuck here.
TEYLA
Once the ship is rendered invisible again, we will be perfectly safe.
SHEPPARD
I'm worried about getting the intel about the Wraith fleet back to Atlantis.
TEYLA
They will keep dialing in through the night at the very least. But if we wait in the location I told Orin and his family to meet us, then—
SHEPPARD
That's where I'm headed.

EXT—ATLANTIS, DAY

INT—ATLANTIS MEETING ROOM

[Ford prepares to film Beckett.]

BECKETT
I must warn you, I'm not very good at this sort of thing.
FORD
Well, don't worry. The only people to see it is going to be your family.
BECKETT
Aye, and you, and the U.S. military.
FORD
Well, give it a shot.
BECKETT
What shall I say?
FORD
Uh…"I miss you. I wish you were here."
BECKETT
I wish who was here?
FORD
I don't know. Who do you wish was here?
BECKETT
Nobody. I wish I wasn't bloody here!
FORD
Doc, I've got a lot of people I've got to get to.
BECKETT
All right, uh…I suppose I could say hello to my mother.
FORD
Good. There you go. All right, you ready?
BECKETT
Okay, go. Hello, Mum. I hope this message finds you well. I trust your petunias are in full bloom by now. Oh, and I do hope you're keeping up with the ointment I gave you. If you've adhered to the regime, the fungus should have cleared up by now.

[Ford looks disgusted.]

BECKETT
What's wrong?
FORD
Dude. Fungus?
BECKETT
On her toenails. I thought you said no one would watch this except my family.
FORD
Yeah, but—but fungus?
BECKETT
What, then, shall I talk about?
FORD
I don't know. It's your mother. Tell her you love her.
BECKETT
No, no, I can't do that. I go all emotional.
FORD
So?
BECKETT
She's very delicate, my mother. As sweet a soul as you'll ever meet. As pure as the driven snow. If I get upset, then she'll get upset, and I can't have that.
FORD
It's not like we're live, Doc. I mean, if you don't like what we put on tape the first time, we can always do it again.
BECKETT
We can?
FORD
Sure.
BECKETT
Oh. Well, I suppose I could do that, then.
FORD
All right… Here we go.
BECKETT
Um…Mum? I miss you terribly.

[He starts crying..]

BECKETT
I can't do this!

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, NIGHT

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[The Jumper sets down in sight of the village. Sheppard looks through his binoculars.]

SHEPPARD

(sighing)

Come on, Orin, show up.

[Teyla stares at him.]

SHEPPARD
What?
TEYLA
Not long ago, you would have blithely left him behind.
SHEPPARD
Well, the situation has changed.
TEYLA

(tearing up)

Earlier today, Lieutenant Ford suggested we steal from a community of children.
SHEPPARD
It's because they have a ZPM, and we could bring them back.
TEYLA
Only to face death in Atlantis?
SHEPPARD
Look, Ford and I are military. We've spent a lot of our lives training how to survive.
TEYLA
I have spent my life surviving the Wraith.
SHEPPARD
Part of that training is knowing who you can save and who you can't.
TEYLA
And that decision is yours alone?
SHEPPARD
I said that I'd wait for your friend if there was time. Now there's time. What else do you want from me?
TEYLA
Too much, I fear.
SHEPPARD
It's going to be a long night.

[Looking through his binoculars again, he sees Darts flying over the village, their culling beams active.]

INT—ATLANTIS MEETING ROOM

[Zelenka is recording his message.]

ZELENKA

(gesturing furiously)

Speaks Czech. Failsafe. Speaks Czech.

[As he speaks, he remembers the city rising from beneath the sea when they first arrived. The scene switches between "Rising" and Zelenka explaining it in Czech with great drama. He ends with great joy as the city settles on the surface of the ocean.]

FORD
You didn't say anything that would require security clearance, did you?
ZELENKA
Security clearance?

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, NIGHT

[Many Darts buzz over the village with their culling beams active. There are scattered fires among the buildings.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

SHEPPARD
This is hard to sit and watch.
TEYLA
There is nothing we can do.
SHEPPARD

(emotional)

Oh, we could do a lot. It would just be the last thing we ever do.
TEYLA

(moved)

We are far outnumbered, and the gate is still inaccessible. But if we save Orin and his family, we will have done something.
SHEPPARD
Something.

INT—ATLANTIS MEETING ROOM

[Bates is speaking to the camera.]

BATES
I'm going to miss you, kiddo. I can't wait to get back home and take you to a basketball game and watch Kobe and Shaq take another title home for the Lakers… That's it.
FORD
That's it?
BATES
What else am I going to say to the kid?
FORD
He's your little brother, Sergeant.
BATES
And I'm probably never going to see him again. Why make it worse than it has to be?
FORD
That's not what this is about, man.
BATES
That's exactly what this is about… Don't sweat it, Lieutenant. I'm happy I got the chance to say goodbye.
FORD
Yeah, but you didn't say it.
BATES
Not in so many words.

[Bates gets up and leaves.]

INT—ATLANTIS CORRIDOR

[Ford walks with his video equipment. McKay sees him.]

MCKAY
Lieutenant Ford…
FORD
Ah, you ready to record your message?
MCKAY
Already done. Actually, I took the liberty of doing mine in private. Now, it may require some editing.

[He holds up a digital tape cassette.]

FORD
Editing?
MCKAY
Yeah, I went on a bit. Actually I used the entire tape.
FORD
You talked for an hour?
MCKAY
See, I found it rather therapeutic, actually. Now, I'm fairly confident I've come up with several valuable insights. In fact, I'm sure of it, but I've only slept six hours in the last few days, so, um…

[He wiggles his fingers next to his head.]

FORD
Who's it for?
MCKAY
Humanity in general, my sister. Look, I don't expect you to cut it down to just a few minutes. I mean, there is gold in here. So just make sure mine's last, and that way, if it gets cut off, fine, but if the gate holds the connection a few extra milliseconds, then we won't have wasted the time.
FORD
Well, I'll look forward to it.

[McKay gives Ford the tape.]

MCKAY
Well…enjoy.
FORD
Gold…

INT—MCKAY'S LAB

[Ford watches the footage, which was shot in McKay's lab. McKay fusses with his hair before starting.]

MCKAY

(strongly and awkwardly)
And in five…four…three… This is Dr. Rodney McKay speaking to you from my base of operations in the lost city of Atlantis, located deep within the Pegasus galaxy. I record this message on the eve of our darkest hour. As I speak, an alien armada of Biblical proportions is on its way, bent—dare I say hell bent, in keeping with the metaphor—on our destruction. We will do our best to stave off their attack, but I am afraid that defeat is all but inevitable. I and the other members of my team face the most horrific deaths imaginable as our very lives are-are sucked from our chests in a-in a…a horrific…okay, um…
(uncertainly)

Okay, starting again, starting again. Um, Ford, just cut that, all right? What about, uh…

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, NIGHT

[A beam hits the ground in front of the village from space.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

SHEPPARD
What is that?
TEYLA
I've never seen such a thing.
SHEPPARD
I'm going to go check it out.
TEYLA
You may be discovered.
SHEPPARD
I'll make a point not to.
TEYLA
Major—
SHEPPARD
I just want to see what—whatever that is. Just stay here until Orin and his family show up.

[He grabs a P-90, opens the rear hatch, and steps out.]

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, NIGHT

[Sheppard emerges from the cloaked Jumper. He holds up a scanner as he jogs toward the beam.]

INT—MCKAY'S LAB

[McKay's footage continues.]

MCKAY

And in five, four, three…
(smiling and confident)

My friends, I'm Dr. Rodney McKay of the Atlantis Expedition, and as the facts of our heroic struggle against the Wraith and our untimely demise are already known to you, in that light, I'd like to pass along some final thoughts. Now, my extensive education, training, and firsthand experience in the field of astrophysics has given me a unique perspective that few on Earth—or, well, on any other planet, for that matter—can match. I'd like to take a few moments now to pass along that perspective to you. I'll begin with a few observations on a subject that is both near and dear to my heart. Leadership.

[He holds up a stack of note cards and takes one to begin.]

INT—WEIR'S OFFICE

[Ford films Weir's message in her office. Her speech is interspersed with scenes of the deaths of the people she is speaking about. The video jumps in a montage style, without showing the complete message.]

WEIR
Mr. and Mrs. Markham, my name is Dr. Elizabeth Weir, and your son was a member of my expedition team. It is with deep regret that I have to inform you that he was killed in the line of duty just a few days ago. He died in the defense of others, and his sacrifice may have saved many lives… …And her keen curiosity are just some of the qualities that your daughter displayed during her duties as scientist on my team. She and several of her colleagues died suddenly just a few weeks ago. I am not at liberty to reveal the cause of her death, but I can tell you that during her time here, Dr. Dumais was a part of something very profound. She saw and did things she never would have dreamed of before… You can be proud of your son, knowing that he died bravely, while defending others. I confess, I didn't know him as well as I could have, but I do know he was well liked and very well respected among his peers, and I was told of how often he spoke of his family. I do wish I could tell you more. I'm sure you understand, as a military family.
FORD
Are you done, ma'am?
WEIR
Just give me a moment, please, Lieutenant.

INT—MCKAY'S LAB

[Wearing glasses, Miko speaks into the camera.]

MIKO
I am keeping busy with my job. I work hard, like everyone else, to ensure the success of this expedition, and also to please the leader of our science team—

[As she speaks, she flashes back to McKay yelling at two scientists.]

MCKAY
No, no, no, no, no. This sequence first, and then the secondary code. Unless you're intentionally trying to blow us up, in which case, excellent work.

[She speaks into the camera.]

MIKO
He does not always remember my name, but I have enjoyed working for him very much.

[She remembers McKay taking a bite of a sandwich and spitting it out.]

MCKAY
What is this? What is this? Kiwi? Who made this? Did you make this?
MIKO
He's a very honorable and brave man.

[She remembers McKay getting a leg cramp and jumping around the lab in pain, as she chases him, trying to help.]

MCKAY
Ow! Ow! Okay, cramp, cramp, cramp, cramp, cramp…
MIKO
Until then…I will continue to serve at his pleasure.

INT—MCKAY'S LAB

[Ford watches more of McKay's tape.]

MCKAY
I once caught mono kissing a girl in Algebra Club. I missed an entire month of school. Still, the kiss was, uh, something, so it was probably worth it. April Bingham. Cute blonde. God, see, I love blondes. Especially with the, uh, the short hair. Mm…Samantha Carter, if you're watching…the torch is still burning. Sadly, soon to be extinguished.. But, you know, you should know I think you are just so…well, you're great, you're really, really great. And I would go so far as saying that you're the hottest scientist I've ever worked with. In fact, there's probably not a night that goes by that I don't find myself, uh…okay, Ford, let's lose that, and let's get back to, uh…leadership.

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[Teyla goes to the rear compartment and starts pulling out survival supplies. There is much screaming from outside. She senses something and looks up to see a Wraith drone soldier walking by the open rear hatch. It looks right at her. She look at her P-90 but doesn't move.]

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, NIGHT

[The drone sees nothing but an empty field where the Jumper sits. It continues its patrol.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[Teyla breathes hard with adrenalin.]

INT—ATLANTIS BRIEFING ROOM

[Sitting in front of his laptop, Kavanagh prepares to film his message.]

KAVANAGH
Who all will be watching this?
FORD
Uh, anyone you're sending it to. Family, friends, loved ones.
KAVANAGH
Will anyone from Atlantis be viewing this?
FORD
No, messages are private. You can get as mushy as you want.
KAVANAGH

(reading from his computer)

All right. Uh, this is a message is for General Jack O'Neill of Stargate Command. I feel it is my duty to inform you of what I consider to be serious errors in judgment among the leaders of this expedition, most notably, Dr. Elizabeth Weir. Her actions have repeatedly and recklessly exposed the people of this expedition to extreme danger, leading us directly to the grave situation we currently find ourselves in.
FORD
You know what? How about I leave the room, and let you record your whining in private?
KAVANAGH
Fine.

[Ford leaves.]

KAVANAGH
I've been keeping a record of Dr. Weir's questionable activities, which I would like to detail for you now.

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, NIGHT

[Sheppard moves through the woods then stops to look at the beam through his binoculars. He sees a Dart pass overhead and retreats.]

INT—MCKAY'S LAB

[McKay is now sitting casually against a lab bench.]

MCKAY
Never cared for dogs. Too much work, too needy, too unpredictable. I mean, you leave one door open, the tiniest little cracks, and they're gone. You look for them, you put up flyers, it's no use. And since your father refused to pay for a license, the animal shelter has no way of tracking him. You know, God knows what happened to that little guy. Now, cats…now, that's a whole different story. I mean, cats are self-sufficient, they're dependable, you shake the box, they come running. The cynic would say it's because of the food, but my cat, see, I truly believe he enjoys my company. There's something very comforting about coming home from work at the end of the day and having a familiar face waiting for you, you know? Still, I digress. Where was I? Uh…right. Leadership.

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[Teyla hears screaming all around. She sees a family of four running toward the Jumper. She pushes the control to un-cloak.]

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, night

[The family sees the Jumper appear. Teyla comes out the rear hatch.]

TEYLA
Over here! It is all right. I am a friend. Please, hurry. This way. Hurry. This way.

[She ushers them into the Jumper and re-cloaks it.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

TEYLA
How many of you are remaining?
ARJA
I don't know. The Wraith are everywhere.
TEYLA

(giving a canteen to the child)

Here, drink this. It is water. Orin, have you seen him?

[She gives another canteen to the man.]

ARJA
Not since before the Wraith arrived. Thank you. We must go now. The Wraith will find us.
TEYLA
No, they will not. Our ship has a shield which makes it invisible to them. You are safe here. Just rest. We will leave soon.

[She settles them down onto the bench.]

INT—WEIR'S OFFICE

[Weir continues her recording.]

WEIR
Finally, I would like to say something to the families of every member of this expedition. I wish I could tell you more about what your loved ones are doing, and someday, I hope you find out, because you will be amazed. But I will tell you that I could not be more proud of each and every one of them. Their heroism has amazed me.

[She recalls many moments of heroism, by McKay, Sheppard, and others.]

WEIR
Their resourcefulness has staggered me.

[She remembers scenes of last-minute victory.]

WEIR
We face a terrible enemy and an uncertain future. But if we are never heard from again, know that your loved ones did not face that uncertainty alone. We are facing our future together.

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[Teyla looks outside through binoculars. People are still screaming outside. She sees Sheppard running toward the Jumper. She meets him at the rear hatch.]

TEYLA
Major…
SHEPPARD
It's pretty ugly out there. Is this Orin's family?
TEYLA
No. They have not seen Orin since the culling began.
SHEPPARD
Well, the village is pretty much wiped out.

[He walks to the cockpit and looks through binoculars.]

SHEPPARD
The gate just shut off. We should be able to dial up and get out of here before the Wraith can do anything about it.
TEYLA
Please, Major. Give Orin more time.
SHEPPARD
If he was able to get here, he would be here by now. We've got to get back.
TEYLA
Then go. I will stay and search in the daylight. You can return for me later.
SHEPPARD
You can't do that.
TEYLA
I consider Orin as family, Major. I am sorry if you do not understand what that means—
SHEPPARD
I understand it, Teyla, but that's not the point I'm trying—
TEYLA
With you or without you, I am staying.
SHEPPARD
You won't make it.
TEYLA
Then I ask that you stay as well, just a little longer. Allow something good to come of this.
SHEPPARD
All right. We'll give it a little more time.

EXT—ATLANTIS, NIGHT

INT—INFIRMARY

[Beckett records his message.]

BECKETT
I know you worry about me, Mum. But somehow, we've found a way to rise to each challenge, so I wouldn't fret about my safety. It's the people here, from dozens of countries, all connected by a single bond—we represent the people of Earth. And if there's one thing I've discovered about we Earthlings, we're a scrappy bunch. I wouldn't be surprised if I bring—
FORD
Doc, you can't say "Earthlings." Your mother doesn't have security clearance.
BECKETT
She knows I'm from Earth, son. It's not a bloody secret.
FORD
Oh, right.
BECKETT
Sorry, Mum. Anyhow…

INT—BRIEFING ROOM

[Kavanagh continues his recording.]

KAVANAGH
Authorized using a prisoner to test an experimental drug, in clear violation of the Geneva Convention Authorized lowering the Stargate shield when the authenticity of the incoming travelers was clearly in question.

INT—MCKAY'S LAB

[McKay has taken off his jacket and is slouching, his head now not even completely in the frame.]

MCKAY
That's another sight I'll die without having seen. See, to be fair, when you've traveled as much as I've traveled, you'd think that missing Niagara Falls would be no big deal. But you know what, it gnaws at you. There's a lot of movies I wish I'd seen. Won't see now. Never saw Grease, even though I had a thing for Olivia Newton-John when I was a kid. Always wanted to see Gandhi. Only saw the first half of The Sixth Sense. Always wondered how that ended.

[He sits up with renewed attention.]

MCKAY
My sister… Ford, if you cut everything else, just-just, um, keep this part, okay? Jeannie, it's your brother, Rodney. Obviously. I want to say, um… I want to say something, uh… Family is important. I've come to realize that, because the people here have become a sort of a-a surrogate family to me. Now, I know what you're thinking. I've never really been the poster child for that kind of sentiment, but when one's contemplating one's own demise, one tends to see things more clearly. I really do wish you the best, you know, and I'm sorry we weren't closer. Perhaps, um… If by chance, I make it out of this, perhaps one day we can be. And I would like that. Now, if there's time, I'd like to go back to the subject of leadership.

[The screen goes to static.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[Sheppard sees a group of people approaching the Jumper.]

SHEPPARD
Someone's coming.

[He hands the binoculars to Teyla. She smiles and runs out the rear hatch, as does Sheppard.]

EXT—ORIN'S PLANET, NIGHT

[Teyla and Sheppard rush toward Orin and seven others.]

TEYLA
Orin! Orin…
SHEPPARD
How big is his family?
TEYLA
He must have met up with others along the way.
SHEPPARD
That's going to be a problem.
ORIN
I didn't think you'd still be here.
TEYLA
We would not have gone without you.
ORIN
We found others on the way, and even more further behind.
SHEPPARD
How many more?
ORIN
Twelve, perhaps more.

[A large group runs out of the woods towards them.]

ORIN
In here!
ARJA
This way! Quickly!
SHEPPARD
Wait, wait, wait, wait!

[Darts fly toward them with their beams activated.]

SHEPPARD
All right, we'll fit as many people as we can!
TEYLA
Hurry. Come on.

[They run to the Jumper and start to go in.]

TEYLA
Hurry.
ORIN
Come on! Run!
TEYLA
It's all right. It is all right.

[All but the last three make it inside the Jumper.]

INT—PUDDLE JUMPER

[Holding a child, Sheppard dodges the beam and falls onto the ramp.]

SHEPPARD
Get down!

[The Jumper is full of people, and they listen to the screams and culling beams outside. There is no one left outside the Jumper. Sheppard rushes to the pilot seat and dials the Stargate.]

TEYLA
Are you all right?
ORIN
Yes. I'm fine.

[Teyla sits beside Sheppard and looks at him, but he doesn't look back.]

EXT—ATLANTIS, DAY

INT—BRIEFING ROOM

[Weir walks in.]

WEIR
Are our guests comfortably settled in?
TEYLA
Yes.
WEIR
Good. So tell me. How bad is it?
SHEPPARD
Bad. Each hive ship acts like a carrier group, with cruisers and hundreds of Darts escorting it. Grodin's downloading the sensor readings right now.
TEYLA
I have never witnessed a culling that took so many.
SHEPPARD
We saved a few. That's worth something.
WEIR
Rodney, are we ready to send our message?
MCKAY
When you are.
WEIR
Okay.

[McKay leaves.]

MCKAY
Lieutenant Ford is just finishing recording personal messages from all the team members. If you'd like—
SHEPPARD
I'm good.
WEIR
Okay. Well then, along with a short note of my own, I took the liberty of recording messages to the families of the people we've lost.
SHEPPARD
That's a good idea.
WEIR
But there's one in particular… I thought maybe you'd like to do yourself.

INT—ATLANTIS MEETING ROOM

[Sheppard is recording his message.]

FORD
Okay, whenever you're ready, Sir, go ahead.
SHEPPARD
I'm not sure if Colonel Sumner's parents are still alive. I'm not sure he even has a family back there. Not all of us do, but if he does have family, they should know that he died with honor and courage in the performance of his duty. He carried the burden of a leader, and he carried it well. I didn't get the chance to know him well, but I know this… Considering the type of man he was and what we're up against, yeah, I wish he was still here.

INT—WEIR'S OFFICE

[Weir speaks into the camera.]

WEIR
Not a day goes by that I don't think of you, Simon. There's so much I want to tell you and share with you, but I can't. I know this is unfair. So much you don't know, and putting your life on hold for me… So don't. All I ask is you take care of yourself, and know that, wherever you are, my heart is looking after you.

[Members of Atlantis say final words into the camera.]

BECKETT
So take care of yourself, lots of sleep, remember your daily walks, and keep up with your prescription. Well, that's about it. I'll say goodbye now, and, Mum? I do love you.
FORD
Bye, Grandma, Grandpa. I miss you.
BATES
Goodbye, bro.
MIKO
Goodbye.
WEIR
Goodbye, Simon.
SHEPPARD
Goodbye.

EXT—WORMHOLE

INT—SGC GATE CONTROL ROOM

[A wormhole is dialing in.]

TECHNICIAN
We have unscheduled off-world activation!

[Carter sits down at the next terminal.]

TECHNICIAN
Receiving transmission.

[The wormhole shuts down. Carter studies the monitor.]

TECHNICIAN
Who's it from?
CARTER

(surprised)

Atlantis.

FADE OUT

END CREDITS

Transcribed for Solutions by Michelle, March, 2011.

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--Michelle 19:02, 19 March 2011 (UTC)