Disclaimer: Not mine. I'm just playing. I'll put'em back when I'm done.

Rating: G

Synopsis: Some secrets are just impossible to keep.

"The infant I carry, Crichton."

John stopped short, his back to Commandant Grayza, the at present most powerful Peacekeeper he knew of, and he did so in spite of himself. Most of all he wanted to keep on walking, to just put distance between himself and her and get the hell off her damned command carrier, but the twinge of guilt, the vague stirring of beginning realization when he had laid eyes on her voluptuous belly, made him stop and wait for what came next.

He had agreed to meet with her, to explain in more detail how dangerous the wormhole weapons were. She had not demanded his presence, but had merely asked that he help her understand. Obviously, she wanted to make certain that she had all the facts before she met with whoever was in charge back home and told them the whole thing.

Aeryn had been suspicious. Chiana had scoffed the idea and so had Rygel. But John had decided to go, to give as much information as he could so these morons would never even think about wormhole weapons again. He had left out the small detail that he was no longer able to create said weapons, that there was a blank spot in his mind where the technology had once resided.

Now, however, he assumed that the good Commandant was going to give him a piece of information he really didn't want. "What about it?" he asked when she did not continue. He still refused to turn around again to face her.

"It's yours," she said calmly.

John closed his eyes and swallowed. Of course! Just when he thought that nothing bad could touch them any more, he was hit by another barrage of badness. And this particular piece of crap hit a little too close to home. He turned around, shoulders hunched, hands clenched into fists, and stared at her. "I thought it was the Grand Chancellor's. Wasn't that what Braca said?"

"'Captain' Braca," she said with emphasis on the title, "knows no better. I had previously ... entertained the good Chancellor and since I am not a carrier-born Sebacean ..." Here she paused and he saw the slight twitch of her lips, which made him realize that she thought of herself as something other or more than Sebacean, "my gestation period is quite a bit longer than any Peacekeeper female's." She rubbed her belly with both hands and despite it all she had that maternal glow on her otherwise pale cheeks. "I had it tested. It is part Human. The results of that test have been destroyed to keep the child safe once it is born, but I thought you should know."

All John could think of doing was to stare at her. This changed everything and nothing. "So ... that's what you hoped for when you ... 'seduced' me?" he asked quietly, using the term 'seduce' lightly.

With both hands still on her bulging belly, she smiled. "Imagine what power this child will give me once it is old enough. The galaxy will know this child to be yours in time, John Crichton."

He wished desperately that she hadn't said this, that she had decided to keep the child's parentage a secret. "How do you think Scorpius is going to respond to that one?" he countered.

Her eyes narrowed. "Scorpius will not matter at that point. My power is growing as we speak. Soon I will be able to command his execution. By then, the child will be born. I will make certain that it has all the advantages that any privileged child could have. I just wanted you to know that this child binds us together on a whole new level." She smiled narrowly at the obvious expression of concern on his face. "No need to worry. I want nothing from you any more, Crichton. Everything I ever wanted from you," she added and glanced down at her belly, "I have right here."

John eyed her belly for a moment while he chewed helplessly on his lower lip. Three kids. He was going to leave behind three kids at least in this part of the universe, three kids of which he would probably never see the two. How the hell had that ever happen? Then he raised his gaze to her peculiar eyes again. "Just promise me one thing," he said. "If it's a girl, don't give her a hepple gland."

Grayza obviously considered that to be humorous, because she let out a snorted laugh. "I would never subject my child to that," she said. "Besides, she won't need that kind of persuasive powers. She will not have to start at the bottom like her mother did."

"So ... you know it's a girl?" he asked quietly. Grayza nodded once. With a sigh, John took one step back. "Just ... treat her right," he said, turned around and strode out. This revelation presented a whole new pile of trouble; first and foremost that he would have to tell Aeryn about Arnessk now. The question was just... how would she take that bit of news? He almost couldn't bear to think of a possibly negative outcome. Damn all those secrets to hell.

The End