“Sanzo’s usually accurate within a half mile,” Hakkai observed. “Beyond that, it depends in part on how many people are grouped together.”
“Now see, that would’ve been nice to know,” Jack said dryly.
“What’s the point of telling you anything if you’re not going to believe it?” Gojyo eyed him, not at all friendly.
“Zombie uprising?” Carter sputtered. “Who’s supposed to believe that? Dead – doesn’t move, it doesn’t-”
“It’s psychokinetic,” Hakkai said gently, and pointed toward the dead youkai. “One of them was the controller. Possibly both. They used chi to stimulate the muscles. It’s why… the bodies need to be reasonably fresh.”
“H-how can you…?” Carter turned away, trying not to throw up.
“There are a lot of Earth legends that refer to the dead walking,” Daniel said quietly. “Some folklorists believe the Grim Reaper was supposed to be a comforting figure. Sort of. Because dry bones can’t hurt you. But a dead body….” He gestured toward the fine ashes sinking into mud.
“Indeed,” Teal’c agreed. “If your enemy serves a false god, it is not sufficient to kill him. The body must be destroyed, or you may face him again, at a time of his choosing.”
Okay, Jack told himself, breathing slowly. Those two can handle this, time for the Air Force to hold up its end. And time for him to think, really think about their so-called local help.
After all, given Sanzo was lighting up yet another cigarette, he probably had a good few minutes before this planet tried to drive him crazy again.
“All right. Zombies.” Jack shook his head. “Okay, point. I wouldn’t have believed it without seeing it.” And how I’m going to explain this to the general – ouch. “So. Now are you guys willing to give us a straight story?” He didn’t – quite – point at Sanzo. “You can scare an NID guy into a faint, slow down bleeding, hide us… what else can you do?”
“What, you planning to tell us the ‘Gate security protocols?” Sanzo said dryly.
“That’s classified-” Carter started.
Sanzo smirked. “So am I.”
“You’re serious,” Daniel said after a moment.
“Sanzo is the highest rank of spellcasting priest,” Hakkai said frankly. “There are only four or five at a time. Even if an heir should start as an acolyte, his training in the temples only goes so far. The master handles the rest.”
“Kanzeon and the Sanbutsushin know what a Sanzo can do with the sutra,” Sanzo said levelly. “Everyone else, does not need to know.”
But your team’s got a good idea, Jack thought. They didn’t flinch, even when you crispy-fried a village-worth of bodies. They knew.
We’re traveling with a walking WMD. A WMD a Goa’uld Queen wants.