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Title: A Gambit of Queens
Author: tielan
Recipient: shetiger
Pairing: Emmagan/Sheppard
Rating: NC-17
Disclaimer: Stargate: Atlantis, the characters and universe are the property of the Sci-Fi Channel and MGM.
Warnings: violence and graphic sex
Author's Notes: With so much thanks to gaffsie for her beta-ing on the run, and to the tinychat girls and guys for being awesome when the panic set in! Also to the people whose writing has influenced my views on Wraith society and culture - brilliant extrapolation!

Summary: After the events of Enemy At The Gates, corpses are being found drained of life and the team must go hunting Wraith all over the planet. But is this just the work of Wraith opportunists, or is it part of a bigger, long-term plan the Wraith have for Earth?

( A Gambit of Queens )


( 28 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 21st, 2010 02:15 pm (UTC)
Full of awesomeness! I really really enjoyed this very much!
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:03 am (UTC)
I'm glad you did! Thanks for letting me know!
Dec. 21st, 2010 03:12 pm (UTC)
*clicks on cut, sees word count*

Holy crap! Santa, I am already a-gleeing, and settling down to enjoy my story. I'm so excited, eee!
Dec. 21st, 2010 05:02 pm (UTC)
OMGosh. I loved this so much! Thank you, Santa, thank you!

A few notes I started taking while I was reading:

"Lunch," said the white-skinned creature in a voice overlaid with sibilant harmonics, "would be most welcome."

Ahaha! This is so perfectly creepy and yet hilarious at the same time, just that exact blend of Wraith ego from the show!

Bates! I love you, Bates, stick up your ass and all!

"It would be the same were we seeking permission to go through to Genii territory, Ronon."

"I wouldn't ask permission to enter Genii territory."

LOL. This is just a beautiful bit of showing us exactly how Teyla and Ronon are different. They're not just two carbon-copy aliens that came out of the same box. <3

"Your ticket for the guilt trip is not valid." Ahaha Teyla! You are beautiful and I love you! <3


He grabbed at the arm, shoved it away, and it moved without resistance. The Wraith fell to the floor - collapsed, actually. Its compatriots were doing the same, drone and warrior alike, as though they were puppets and their strings had been cut.

"Is an advisory board that has marginal jurisdiction over the way I run my ship." Caldwell was like a steamroller Caldwell! Go you with your bad self!

"All our wars have been against other humans," John said, and couldn't return her smile. *John*

"The things you cooked up that messed with the Wraith? Heard about that."

"It was just one thing. But yes, I cooked it up. In the middle of a fire fight!"

"I'll pat you on the head when I get there."
Oh, this is just precious Rodney & Ronon interaction. <3

...and then I got too caught up in reading to make any more. *g*

I absolutely love the way you wrote John and Teyla together. Their friendship and understanding, and the way they come from clearly different worlds yet work to accept and understand that about each other. And, um, so hot. So very, very hot together.

The Wraith were fabulous, especially the glimpses we got into the Queens' minds. So very cool! I love Teyla kicking Queen ass and coming more and more into her own powers, and learning how to accept what that means.

Oh, and thank you so much for giving great team! Ronon and Rodney were wonderful, and I love the glimpses of all of the other characters that populate the Stargate world. This story is very much not happening in a vacuum, and I loved that.

Just...so, so much love. Thank you!
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:07 am (UTC)
You're very welcome! Thank you for giving me the opportunity to write a big, plotty John/Teyla action-adventure: it's not something that usually comes my way - and having the deadline helps a lot!

There's a lot more I wanted to add in there - lots of little adjustments and 'making it better' things, but I'm so glad you enjoyed all the aspects of the story. (And Ronon and Rodney are my boys, too, but I just love the John/Teyla pairing, so...team + John/Teyla = funtimes!)

Thanks for the lovely, (initially) detailed comment!
Dec. 21st, 2010 04:40 pm (UTC)
Nicely crafted. An intriguing look into the Wraith mind. Well done.
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:07 am (UTC)
Thank you!
Dec. 21st, 2010 05:47 pm (UTC)
A very well crafted, engrossing story. A great Xmas present.
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:08 am (UTC)
I'm glad it hooked you in! Thanks for reading and leaving your lovely comment!
Dec. 21st, 2010 08:09 pm (UTC)
AMAZING!!!! So much here but I love your insight into Teyla.

The only thing that I would probably wonder, is why would John even stay behind on Earth?

But everything was just perfect!!!

Thank you!
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:09 am (UTC)
Well, John is employed by the Air Force, and, as such, is subject to them telling him where he can and can't go, so he has to consider these things!

But yes, he would definitely try to get back to Pegasus - by hook or by crook!

You're welcome, Camy.
Dec. 21st, 2010 09:11 pm (UTC)
I still think this is awesome, and I've read parts of it several times already. ;)

I love your Teyla and her relationship with John, and I adore the way you've utilized characters like Bates and Caldwell.
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:10 am (UTC)
I still secretly believe that Caldwell has a thing for Teyla. And Bates was a wonderful antagonist, even if he couldn't get past his dislike of Teyla.

Thanks for the encouragements when I panicked! I really really needed the petting and you were wonderful!
Dec. 22nd, 2010 07:33 am (UTC)
I loved this all of this story, but I'll admit to a little geographically induced love because you mentioned Brisbane and Toowoomba *glee*
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:12 am (UTC)
Hee! Now I'm wishing I'd written about the Scroungers of Atlantis - this group of Aussie blokes (and a couple of women) from McMurdo who were dragged into the Atlantis expedition by dint of being Really Good At Getting What Was Needed.

I'm glad you enjoyed it! :D
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:53 am (UTC)
Well if you ever do decide to write about them, I'd love to read it :)

Thank you again!
Dec. 23rd, 2010 10:16 am (UTC)
THis was an absolutely fantastic story written superbly. It kept me rivetted to it....in fact I'm now late because I couldn't stop reading it!!! Thanks so much for a really really really great read.

Best wishes for a very Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!

(Now have to run at high speed....but I don't mind if the reason I'm late is reading a great story like this!!)
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:13 am (UTC)
I'm sorry for making you late! (But glad that you enjoyed it so much you couldn't resist reading and leaving a comment!)

Dec. 25th, 2010 08:17 pm (UTC)
Great story! You captured the horror of hunting Wraith on Earth very well, how it´s so fundamentally different from hunting Wraith in Pegasus. I loved your team interactions, the John/Teyla relationship and your Caldwell and Bates.

Yay for Teyla kicking ass! Teyla impersonating a queen, fighting other queens and at the same time having to struggle with her own Wraith heritage was very interesting. "Teyla´s twenty" :)

I also liked your attention to detail: all that annoying background stuff that normally gets ignored (military procedure, fatigue, endless debates, therapy for the hostages etc.) made it feel very realistic.
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:15 am (UTC)
I love Teyla kicking ass, and Teyla kicking ass when people aren't expecting is always fun! I'm glad the extra details gave it a realistic feel for you. Thank you for reading.
Dec. 26th, 2010 10:10 pm (UTC)
Fic Recs...
User jeyla4ever referenced to your post from Fic Recs... saying: [...] A Gambit of Queens (NC-17) [for shetiger] http://community.livejournal.com/sga_santa/316388.html [...]
Dec. 27th, 2010 05:02 am (UTC)
I'm almost 100% sure I know who wrote this. :) I'm sorry I haven't had time to write a detailed response, but I have to say that my favorite sections deal with Teyla's Gift and Wraith telepathy. I always love your descriptions of people's minds (whether it's Teyla's when she probes the minds of Wraiths, or John's when he's wandering through the mind of the city); that's where your writing shines. I love the clarity, concision, and sleekness of your prose in those bits.

I know you wanted to put some more finishing touches on this piece, so I won't critique it as a finished work, but you should be proud of what you did accomplish. There are some really lovely pieces of prose in the middle, especially.

Longer comment in the future (maybe?), but I just wanted you to know that you have fans reading this, and I was very thankful to have a nice, meaty-length SGA story for Christmas time. Just what I wanted! (Someone got me Death Game for Christmas, and I started squee'ing!) I'm always in awe of people who can write stories of this magnitude! Wow, I feel that I'll have to work my way up there; 1,000 words is hard enough. =P

I hope you had a great holiday! ♥ Thank you for treating us John/Teyla fans (and SGA watchers, in general) with this action-adventure fic; your hard work is much appreciated! I know the feedback isn't always there, and it's easy to fall into the trap of gauging your talent through the numbers game (or getting frustrated that less talented writers receive more comments) to the point that you start second-guessing yourself and wondering why you even try, but please don't get discouraged. Please don't buy into the lie that you're not "good enough." You are not your writing. The frivolous factors that determine popularity do not determine your talent or your worth.

You know what impresses me most? Your persistence. "Eighty percent of success is showing up" (Woody Allen), and that is what you do. You keep writing. You're always writing, and that dedication is something to be emulated. You can hold your head up high because I know that will pay off in the future, even if you write more words than readers will actually ever see. I'm hoping for big things in your future; you have the discipline and work ethic to match your aspirations, and that already puts you ahead of most of the pack. Always remember that you have people rooting for you! :) *sends best wishes*
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:19 am (UTC)
LOL. Why, yes. It's me. :)

Thanks for your comment, hon. Praise like yours helps so much when I'm down!

And you know, I'd love to hear that detailed response when you finally have the time. :D
Dec. 27th, 2010 07:04 am (UTC)
wow...just wow...loved it...
loved teyla using her gift and learning from it as well...
loved her relationship wtih john and love Caldwell....and the humor...and the team dynamics...
great story
thanks so much
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:19 am (UTC)
Thank you!
Jan. 2nd, 2011 05:06 pm (UTC)
Oh, this is terrific! Fabulous story, start to finish. Especially love how Teyla finds herself recognizing the Wraith for what they are, rather than just some cardboard monster.
Jan. 3rd, 2011 11:21 am (UTC)
It's a bit of a pity they never went into the question of the Wraith as 'people' in the show: the question of 'by what measure is a person' would have made for some very complex interactions in the show if they'd done it.

Thanks for reading it, though, and for leaving a comment!
Jan. 12th, 2011 12:13 am (UTC)
I really like how you explore Teyla's complicated relationship with the Wraith, especially viz her genetics and the implications of that. I also like the xenophobia members of the IOA display, if only b/c it seems logical that they would. Also like that whilst you include Bates in this, he's not suddenly gung ho about Teyla. I also enjoyed the subtle relationships between everyone in this, especially John and Teyla, and Caldwell and the team.
( 28 comments — Leave a comment )


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