BLIND SPOT BY PHOENIX
the close friendship between Jack and Daniel.
Scene, Episode Tag for 'Enemies'.
spoilers for Enemies, obviously.
References to CoTG, Enemy Within, Crossroads,
AP, Fair Game, Exodus, FIAD, Bloodlines,
Pretence, Stargate the Movie and I'm sure one or two
others I've missed.
to accept Jack's statement his best 'wasn't good enough'.
Originally completed and posted to the net 15 Jul 01.
"I should have seen
Jack's voice sounds
so tired, and full of defeat. We've lost Teal'c - probably for good this
time and of course, Jack is blaming himself for letting it happen.
I know how he feels.
I should have seen this coming as well. I think - I think I did, I just
didn't want to see what I was…seeing.
But enough of that.
Jack's actually talking about what happened on Vorash. I wasn't sure
if he would, when I first asked him if he wanted to. But he is. And he's
saying exactly what I expected him to. Mea culpa. All my fault. He's consistent.
Dead wrong, in this case, but consistent.
I might not have
known anything about the actual events on Vorash until Jack started telling
me, but I've had some time to think about how they ended up there. Plenty
of time to worry and agonise about little else since he radioed us to tell
us they weren't on the way back to the ship like they were supposed to be.
I've had too much time to ponder the price of obsession and Jaffa revenge
after that Mayday and then silence - nothing - knowing only that they were
going down, but not if either one of them was still alive.
I've run through
the whole thing over and over in my head and I do know something for sure.
What happened on Vorash - that they were even there at all - it wasn't Jack's
fault. He doesn't believe that, of course. All he can see is a member of
his team, his friend, got taken out while he was on Jack's watch, and even
though last time I looked he wasn't omniscient - his claims to the contrary
- even though there was no possible way he could have anticipated or prevented
what happened, he still thinks he should have been able to. He should have
known, should have seen it coming, shouldn't have let it happen.
That's just not right.
Jack did everything he could, considering they shouldn't even have been there
in the first place. The wonder is we didn't lose both of them. Stupid, the
whole thing was just so stupid. So damned unnecessary. Jack's nowhere
near being able to see this, so I'm going to have to take it a little slow,
here. Try and break it to him gently.
"But isn't the point
of a good ambush that you don't see it coming?" I reply.
Well, that was clever.
Not exactly overwhelming Jack with my insight, here. He's not with me. Try
"Okay, the point
I'm trying to make here is I'm sure you did your best."
Silence. I haven't
once looked at him since I sat down here beside him, but I don't need to.
I can feel the despair and grief rolling from him in waves. He's not cutting
himself any slack about this. He's to blame, end of story - he's not going
to see it any other way without a little help. I don't have to look at him
to know how he's feeling and why, the same way I know the next words out
of his mouth are going to be along the lines of 'well, it wasn't good enough,
was it?' Or something like that.
"Apparently, my best
wasn't good enough," he softly, bleakly mutters.
Close enough. He's
perched on the brink of that slippery slope that'll shoot him straight down
into self-pitysville. Sorry, Jack, not today. I'm cancelling your trip.
I know how much this hurts, it's tearing me up as well, but dammit, I'm not
going to let you take the rap for the results of a selfish, pointless, deliberate,
wilful act that probably got Teal'c killed and maybe will be the end of us
as well. I'm sorry about Teal'c, I am, but I'm also so angry with him. I'm
sorry he's - he's - gone - but if he'd taken you with him…
Besides, if anything,
I'm just as much to blame for this - maybe, maybe more, even, because I've
known - but I didn't want to believe it. I didn't warn Jack and I should
have. Oh God, I should have warned Jack. Why didn't I say something!
Well, I'm going to
say something now. Jack might hate me for it, but I'm going to tell him the
truth. We can't change what happened, we can't help Teal'c now, maybe we
can't even help ourselves. There's a very good chance none of us are going
to be alive much longer so it's likely he won't have long to stew about it
if I say nothing, but I'll be damned if I'm going to let Jack hurt himself
over this. I just wish I hadn't left my own head in the sand for so long
about Teal'c, that I'd said something, especially after what Teal'c
told me back on Vorash, everything that's happened, what I know… The signs
have all been there for so long. I should have faced it, should have said,
maybe if I'd made Jack listen to me, forced him to look at the blind spot
he has about Teal'c….
The one we all have.
"Whatever you say,
Jack," I begin roughly. "But if we're talking butt-kicking time here, move
over. I want a piece of the action. No reason why you should have all the
fun. You're not the only one who needs their ass booted into the middle
of next week."
Jack starts, not
just at what I've said, but the way I've said it. Oh yeah, you heard right.
I'm angry. I'm not just angry at Teal'c, I'm angry at myself. I should
have seen this coming. I didn't want to believe Teal'c could really do something
like this. To Jack. To - to us. I guess none of us wanted to see it. Not
me. Especially not Jack.
"Hey." Jack says
gently as he bangs his leg against my shoulder. "What's this all about?"
He's instantly responded to my abrupt change of mood. Puzzled, concerned
for me, forgetting all about his own misery of the moment. He cares. That's
why he's Jack.
Next time I will
not be capable of such restraint.
Teal'c voice is like
a death knell in my head. And an accusation. You told me right there, didn't
you Teal'c? You warned me. I just wasn't listening. You sat there and
told me the next time you had the chance you weren't going to let Tanith
get away. No matter what it took to get to him. Or who you took with you.
I heard you. I just
is about is who is really to blame for - for -" I wave a hand in the air,
"the mess we're all in. I'll see your 'I should have seen it coming' and
raise you an 'I should have said something'. I talked to Teal'c on Vorash.
After you came back from searching on the surface for Tanith. He said some
things I should have taken a little more seriously - I should have - "
"Crap, Daniel," Jack
grumbles, the defensive edge I was waiting to hear already in his voice.
'You're not starting with the Shan'auc garbage again, are you? I told you
before there was nothing to worry about."
Ouch! Jack still
can't say her name without getting his back up. The fact that Teal'c - his
'brother', chose Shan'auc over him - that hurt Jack. Teal'c might not have
meant for Jack to take it personally, but he did. When he stood there and
told us he was leaving the SGC all Jack heard was Teal'c was leaving him.
And when I tried to talk to him about it later, ask him if maybe we shouldn't
be a little concerned about the implications of Teal'c's resignation - he
vented all over me, then shut me out and refused to talk about it.
He still doesn't
get it. He wasn't angry about Shan'auc. She wasn't the problem, she was
only a symptom. A very alarming reminder of a pre-existing, longstanding
- problem. A problem none of us wanted to acknowledge or look at, and because
we didn't - look where it's gotten us.
"Jack," I sigh. "What
I'm trying to tell you - it has everything to do with Shan'auc. Or rather,
what she represents. It goes to the heart of who Teal'c is. What we wouldn't
see about him - believe about him. He chose her over us once and we brushed
it aside like it didn't happen. He was going to leave us, Jack! The
only reason he didn't is because Shan'auc was murdered."
"I know that's what
he said, but he wouldn't have gone through with it," Jack mutters stubbornly.
"He was just, a little - you know - but we would have talked him out of it.
He wouldn't have walked out on us."
Even Jack doesn't
really believe what he's saying. I can hear it in his voice. He wants to.
He really wants to. Jack might not want admit it, especially to himself,
but he has quite an investment in Teal'c. Jack's the man who scored a big
one on Apophis. He's the guy who said the word and turned his First Prime
from the dark side. Just like that. Jack called and Teal'c answered. Jack's
pretty proud of that. Teal'c is Jack's 'discovery'. His protégé. His
pride and joy. He found him, converted him, vouched for him, and sponsored
him. Jack's got a lot riding on Teal'c being everything Jack thinks he is.
His need for Teal'c to be his noble, unimpeachably loyal 'brother in arms'
has made him turn a bit of a blind eye to some of the 'blips' along the way
- subtle, troublesome indications there are things in Teal'c none of us
want to believe are there, and yet, considering who and what he has been
- how could they not be?
"Yes, Jack, he would
have," I counter. It comes out a little harsher than I intended, but Jack
needs to hear this. Almost as much as I finally need to say it. "He would
have left us for Shan'auc, the same way he would have left us for Rya'c if
the general hadn't given us permission to go to Chulak. The same way he's
left, and threatened to leave when he didn't think our means suited his ends.
I know when he first came to us he swore to you and Hammond he would pledge
his full allegiance to the Earth and the SGC, but there's always been a certain
conditional - aspect - to his dedication. He hasn't always been straight
with us, Jack. I'm not saying he's lied to us, but he hasn't always been
completely honest with us either. He's withheld information and he's had
an agenda from the very beginning. One he's never strayed from, for all
he swore he going with our program."
Jack's not moving,
not saying a word. Which is actually a good thing. It means he's listening.
Not happy about what he's hearing, but he's listening. We've been down this
road before, although we didn't get nearly this far. The last time I tried
to broach this subject with Jack he froze me out with an 'I'm not listening'
stare and when I persisted he called me a few names I'd never heard before
and haven't heard since and stomped away from me.
He's neither insulting
me nor walking away. I'm going for pushing my luck.
"Jack," I begin.
"Have you ever wondered why Teal'c broke with Apophis and saved us
on Chulak? I mean, really? He didn't know at the time, we were the Tau'ri
- that the Earth was the first world, he didn't find that out until later.
I know how it happened. I saw it - I was there. I also know what he told
us later. But why, Jack? Why did he really do it?"
I've never really
seen it this way before, but suddenly, the whole scenario, everything that
happened on Chulak, how utterly implausible it sounds… We accepted the validity
of what seemed to be the instantaneous conversion of someone we had every
reason to believe was a merciless enemy and nothing more, but then we weren't
about to question our good fortune at the time and afterwards - he'd saved
our lives. Hard to ignore that as a character reference, for starters.
He proved himself again by stopping Kawalsky. He swore his goals were the
same, his loyalty, his allegiance was now to the Earth. And we believed
him. Took him at his word.
Were we wrong to
so readily place such faith in him? Naïve to be so trusting? Foolishly
optimistic to believe someone who's had the power and influence Teal'c has
enjoyed would be content to be SG-1's third banana and Colonel Jack O'Neill's
personal reclamation project?
"I didn't have to
wonder," Jack responds quickly. "I know what I saw. All I needed to know.
Just like I told him."
"But what did we
see, Jack?" I gently ask him. "The man as he truly was, or the way we wanted
him to be?"
One mistake all of
us made was assuming any of us were capable of truly understanding him.
We've got no frame of reference for any of his experience. No way to know
or even begin to grasp the forces that have shaped him. We can try to imagine,
but we can never know. And we sure haven't got a prayer of being able to
unravel his motivations or the true imperatives that drive his actions
"What's your point?"
"I'm not saying we
shouldn't have trusted Teal'c, only that we shouldn't have assumed…"
This is hard to say.
Almost as hard as it is to finally admit it. "If we've learned anything
from going out there - from coming into contact with people like the Nox
- just for starters - you can't judge by appearances. It's a mistake to
assume what we know or understand applies in every situation and to everyone
we meet. Our rules aren't everyone else's rules. And certain concepts
we consider to be absolutes, the way we define them - mean entirely different
things to different peoples and cultures depending on who and what defined
them - for them."
We've had our very
own object lesson in the danger of making assumptions under our noses all
this time, but we didn't get it. We looked, thought we saw, believed we
understood. We thought we knew him. And the truth was, we knew nothing.
Even with everything
that's happened I have no doubt that right down to the core of his being
Teal'c is an honourable man. What I am no longer sure of, however, is if
his definition of honour is the same as mine.
Or if it ever has
"What you're saying
is Teal'c has been playing by a different set of rules the whole time he's
been with us. His rules. That he's been… I - don't buy it," Jack finishes
bitterly. "I can't believe he lied to us."
what I'm saying, Jack," I hasten to assure him. "If anything, it's exactly
the opposite. He is a man of honour and always has been. But what that means
to him - his terms of reference - the mistake we made was assuming
concepts like honour mean the same thing to him as they do to us. We haven't
always lost out when he's experienced a conflict of interest. He's played
by our rules and postponed his revenge before, not just over Shan'auc, but
his father as well. But he wasn't going to do it this time. He wasn't going
to let anything stop him from getting to Tanith, and yet he warned me.
"If he wasn't our
friend and someone we could trust, he wouldn't have done that. He could
have lied to me when I confronted him on Vorash. If his need for revenge
was truly all that mattered to him - if the only reason why he came back
to the SGC was to get another shot at avenging Shan'auc's murder, then he
would have needed to do everything he could to hide that fact. He would
have lied to me, tried to keep his true intentions hidden, not told me exactly
what he was going to do in case I - "
"Ratted him out?"
"Yeah," I nod. "He
told me, Jack. He sat there and told me he was going after Tanith the next
chance he got. He didn't try to hide it. That's - that's got to count for
Yeah. It does. It
does count for something.
"Crap," Jack expels
a weary sigh and taps his balled fist against my shoulder. Slowly, rhythmically,
like he's counting time to a melody only he can hear or tapping out a message.
"What a freaking mess. How the hell did we get here, Danny? What the hell
happened to all of us, anyway? When did we all start coming unglued? I
stopped listening, you stopped talking, Carter just never stopped and Teal'c
of Jack as his hero?
There was a time
it was painfully obvious Teal'c had Jack on a pretty high pedestal. Worshipped
the ground he walked on, not to put too fine a point on it.
It's been wearing
a little thin, lately. Teal'c's been watching all of us, very closely for
the past four years, but no one as closely as the man he once idolized.
It shouldn't have come as a surprise Teal'c would regard Jack with the same
kind of reverence he once gave Apophis - what other frame of reference did
he have for service that didn't include veneration of and fanatical devotion
to a figure that was slightly 'larger than life'? Jack fit the bill for
awhile, but guess what, he's only human after all. He's made mistakes.
Teal'c's noticed. Lately the interaction between them has been a lot less
'dutiful' and a lot more Alpha male confrontational. Teal'c has been pushing
and Jack has been venting. They've been butting heads ever since Jack and
I both closed our eyes to the danger he was trying to bring to our attention
during the Triad and chose Skaara over the Tollans. After Teal'c did something
he's never done before. Went behind Jack's back and saved the day
after Jack ordered him not to.
That's when it started,
the doubts, the cracks appearing in the absolute certainty Jack had of Teal'c's
unconditional loyalty. And as much as he's tried to close his mind to it,
that niggling little voice has been there, eating at Jack for months now.
The business with Shan'auc did drive a wedge between them, whether Jack wants
to face up to it or not. He welcomed Teal'c back with open arms, made a big
deal of showing Teal'c nothing had changed, but it had.
Jack started to lose
his faith that Teal'c would continue to be content to follow him.
I tried to get him
to face what he didn't want to see - but I guess he wasn't ready. Who am
I kidding, I wasn't exactly facing up to the cold hard facts myself. We've
all done a lot of running around and avoiding over the past few months.
Once again, look where it's gotten us.
This could all be
moot in a few hours once we come out from behind the sun and possibly get
atomized, but if this really is, finally - it - I want to leave this life
with as few things left undone weighing me down as possible. It's an opportunity
to balance the books not many people get.
Jack's my friend.
I don't want him to go with any more baggage than he needs to carry either.
Jack gives my shoulder
one final, emphatic tap and then takes his hand away. "This has been fun,
Daniel," he growls in a voice conveying anything but amusement. "But it
still doesn't change the fact I screwed up."
"Didn't," I fire
right back at him.
"Daniel, I don't
want to spoil what might be the end of an otherwise perfect friendship by
punching you in the nose, but you're starting to get on my nerves. You weren't
there," he grates. "You don't know what happened."
"No, Jack, you're
right, I wasn't there," I shrug. "I don't know what went on between the
two of you but it doesn't matter. Whether you did your best or not, whether
I should have told you what I knew - it's all irrelevant. There's only one
person ultimately responsible for Teal'c's present predicament - ours too,
for that matter. The person who made a deliberate decision to set himself
on a course of action he wouldn't let anything or anyone turn him from."
"I still could have
- " Jack starts to protest.
"It shouldn't even
have happened, Jack," I cut him off at the knees. "Neither one of you should
have been on Vorash in the first place." I'm trying to keep my voice calm
but it isn't easy. I'm starting to get angry all over again. Teal'c's loss
is devastating, tragic, but dammit, it didn't have to happen. All
of this - so fucking unnecessary - not only is Teal'c lost, but the way it
happened - so senseless. Pointless. And for what?
have taken off like that. He shouldn't have stranded them on Vorash. Tanith
was going to get his. Teal'c knew that. But it wasn't enough. He had to
make it personal, just had to - Well, he shouldn't have. He shouldn't
have placed Jack in that position - shouldn't have - taken off, shouldn't
Shouldn't have put
his need for revenge before all of our lives.
"Jack, correct me
if I'm wrong here, but who was the one flying that Death-glider?"
Jack doesn't say
anything, but he's gone very still. Not fidgeting or protesting, just lying
there very quietly behind me. He's listening.
"If you had
been flying that glider, would we even be having this conversation? Or be
stranded in a crippled ship so far from home if we don't get blown to smithereens
the moment we come out of hiding Jacob is going to be the only one who'll
live long enough to see home again?"
"Ahhhh, God!" The
slightly muffled sound of Jack's frustrated groan tells me he's talking through
the hands scrubbing his face. He's not happy, but he's hearing what I'm
"No," he admits in
a tone heavy with what it's costing him to finally face the truth. "We'd
be on our way home, now."
I wait a beat for
him to say the rest of it. He doesn't. I hear him moving behind me as he
turns on his side toward me and drops his hand on my shoulder.
"All of us." I say
it for him. "Teal'c too. We'd all be safe and well and on our way home
because you would have broken off and come back to the ship when the one
attacking us took off for Vorash and we'd have gotten out of there well before
Apophis showed up and the sun blew up. You wouldn't have gone after Tanith,
making us come back for you, crash-landed on Vorash - "
"I get it," Jack
says sorrowfully as he pats my shoulder. "We were screwed as soon as Teal'c
realised where the ship was going and why. Nothing else mattered to him.
Going after Tanith like that was nuts; especially when he knew the damned
snake was going to go up with the whole freaking system anyway. I tried
to get him to break off and return to the ship. He wouldn't listen - wouldn't
let it go. It was like talking to a…."
"A man completely
obsessed with revenge at the exclusion of everything else?" I finish for
"Yeah," I can barely
hear Jack, he's talking so quietly. "Just like that. He was cold, Danny.
Like a stranger. I couldn't reach him - couldn't make him give it up."
in his voice, the way it suddenly catches. There's something more, something
he's not telling me about what went on in that glider. He doesn't have to.
I heard what he said on the radio, and what he didn't say. I won't make
him admit it to me now. There's no point. It's still not his fault. Even
if Jack had pushed and pulled rank on Teal'c, it wouldn't have made the slightest
bit of difference. I know that, and I think Jack does too, but it's something
else he doesn't want to face.
"No one could have,
Jack," I tell him fervently, Maybe I wasn't there, but I know just the
same. I did see - other times, too many times, more than enough
to know I'm telling Jack the absolute truth. "Teal'c made his choice. He
sealed his own fate. No one is responsible for what happened to him but Teal'c.
I can forgive him for that - for going off half-cocked and getting himself…captured,
for needing his goddamned revenge so badly he was willing to throw his own
life away but he had no right to take you with him. If you'd - if you'd
died down there because of some stupid, dumb-ass Jaffa revenge - "
I can't finish.
I understand now, how stupid and pointless hate is. I've got Shifu to thank
for that. There was a time when I would have given Teal'c a very different
answer to his question about Apophis. The one he was expecting. There was
a time when I cheerfully would have squeezed the life out of Apophis with
my bare hands, savoured every moment of throttling him slowly to death.
I would have snuffed him out without hesitation or a single qualm and laughed
while I was doing it.
That's a part of
myself I never want to see again.
I know a little bit
about hate, and wanting revenge. I also saw, far too clearly, what living
for it does to you. It solves nothing, restores nothing, soothes nothing,
just eats you alive and destroys you bit by bit.
Or all at once, when
needing it beyond all hope of reason makes you too stupid to live.
Jack squeezes my
shoulder. "It's okay," he says awkwardly. "I know this looks bad, but we've
had worse. We'll get out of this, you'll see. Carter and Jacob will pull
some sort of scientific - thingee - out of their hats. They just blew up
a sun, for crying out loud. How hard can it be to fix a hyperdrive and find
a way to shave a few years off our transit time? I betcha we'll be home for
Christmas," he finishes with bleak bravado.
"I hope he's dead."
I hang my head as I say the words we've both been avoiding. Really dead.
Finally and completely. The alternative, the most probable future Teal'c
has ahead of him, until Apophis tires of the sport - endless torture, death
and resurrection. Please, please, please, don't let this be happening to
Teal'c. No one deserves to have such suffering inflicted upon them. Not
even Apophis. And certainly not our friend.
What makes it even
worse, we'll never know. He's beyond our help, beyond our knowledge, lost
to us. We can't help him, can't save him. Please let him be dead. Better
that than what Apophis will do to him, for God knows how long.
"Me too," Jack echoes
quietly, his tone as empty of any hope it could actually be so as I feel.
I might not understand
who Teal'c is anymore - maybe I never knew him, only thought I did. But
I do know this. He let this need to avenge Shan'auc rule him to the exclusion
of everything else, but he never meant - he never meant us any harm. Never
meant any of this to happen to us. I wish I could tell him though I don't
understand why he forgot about us I know he didn't abandon or betray us.
"Uhhhh, got any gum?"
Jack suddenly grunts the spectacular non-sequiter.
"What?" I shake
my head, not quite sure I've heard right.
"I said - got any
gum?" Jack leans forward and whispers into my ear.
"No," I turn toward
him as he pulls back again, seeing his face for the first time. An odd smile
is quirking at his mouth. "You know I don't - why would you think I'd have
"What?" I just stare
at him. Looking for further evidence of his obvious mental breakdown.
"Well, what good
are you, then?" he scowls at me.
"I've got a gun,"
I scowl right back at him.
“Size isn’t important,
Jack, it’s what you do with it.”
I can't help it,
what he's said is just so absurd, I'm chortling uncontrollably even though
laughter was the furthest thing from my mind a few short seconds ago. There's
a slightly hysterical edge to the sound, but I'm still laughing. And Jack
is laughing as well as he scoots around and thuds down onto the step beside
I'm still shaking
my head and snorting as he screws up his face and peers sideways at me.
"So, no gum, huh?" He scratches his nose and sighs heavily. "Poor planning.
Definitely shoulda brought more snacks. I'll bet there isn't a 7-11 within
a hundred and twenty five years of here."
I wipe my eyes with
the heel of my hand and reach into my pocket for my notebook. Jack bumps
against me and watches me scrawl BRING SNACKS in huge letters across the
"You spelled 'snacks'
wrong," he accuses as he jabs a finger at the page.
"Did NOT!" I bristle
as I check what I've written.
"Made you look!"
I snarl and rip the
page out of the book, crumpling it in my hand. I turn to him, fully intending
to make him eat it, when the sudden wave of grief transforming his face…
"He's a good man,"
Jack tells me in a slightly trembling voice. "He was - my friend.
"Yeah, he was," I
answer him. "Mine too."
That much was always
true. It still is. In spite of everything that's happened, I don't doubt
it. Whatever he might have done, whatever truths he withheld from us,
whatever 'agenda' Teal'c was pursuing when he came to us and stayed with
us - he was our friend.
He was a friend.
A damned good one. And neither one of us is going to let the way he left
us change the way we feel about him, or what he meant to us.
"We'll get that damned
bastard Apophis," Jack's face is dark and cold with determination. "I don't
care how long it takes or what it takes but we'll get him. We'll fry his
snaky ass good. We'll get him. And this time he'll stay dead."
Oh God, it never
stops, does it? Isn't this the way - isn't this how all of this started?
"Jack.." I can't
say anything else, I just look at him, touch his arm and shake my head.
I've already lost
one friend to hate. I don't want to lose another.
He stops speaking
as he hears the sound of my voice, his breath catching as he sees my face.
The colour drains from his and his eyes widen as he understands exactly what
I haven't said.
"Crap," he groans
as he shudders and closes his eyes. "Deja View."
"Vu," I gently amend.
"Voo?" he echoes
sceptically. "Not 'view'? That doesn't make any sense."
"It's French, Jack.
It means already seen."
"That's what I said.
"No you didn't."
"Didn't. You said
view, not vu. Not only is it bad French it's even more incorrect English."
"I like it my way."
"But it's wrong."
"Do you think Apophis
would have any gum?"
I'm suddenly aware
I'm still clenching the wadded up ball of paper in my hand so I decide to
get rid of it. By bouncing it off his forehead. All I will say in my own
defence is I was provoked. And I sincerely hope he'll keep pissing me off
for many more years to come.
Years I also hope
we'll actually get to have. No way to know that right now. Right now, we
wait, we hope, and we -
This story is a companion piece and prequel to
Biblio's 'Silence Speaks'.