DAMAGE CONTROL PART THREE
NO ONE BUT YOU BY PHOENIX
Daniel involved in a loving and committed relationship, which usually involves
||Season 4 Spoilers for Stargate
the Movie, Fire and Water, TBFTGoF
the most important decision of his life and then
goes to get his man.
Originally completed and posted to the net 17 Sep
just look at him.
know whether to hug him or slug him again. We've barely
hit the ramp and there he is, lying through his teeth to
the general. Doing a pretty good job of it too, spinning
a tale that has Hammond eating out of his hand.
pea-brained, scum-sucking rat bastard who just punched
his face in. For no good reason except I am a pea-brained,
scum-sucking rat bastard and I could.
but you, Danny. No one but you would do something like
this for someone like me. And if I ever figure out a way
to square this with you I swear to God you are never going
to have to do it again.
be carrying me out of here in a pine box before I ever
do anything like this to you again.
yeah, I know, don't say it. Who do you think you're kidding,
Jack? Road to hell, yadda, yadda. The only thing bigger
than your mouth lately has been your temper. And I haven't
exactly spent my life practising being the soul of restraint.
The man I have been wouldn't last a week before something
would set him off and there he'd be, popping off at you
for good intentions.
there. Done that. Don't want to do it any more. Don't want
to be that man any more.
do I do to get from where I am to where I want to be?
here's a thought! Why don't you try apologizing to the
man, for starters? Not something you've had a lot of practice
at lately, but it's a beginning. Start small; work your
way up. One step at a time. 'Cause if he won't forgive
you, all the other stuff is sorta out the window as well,
not going to think about that right now.
is leading Daniel out of the gate room, lending a hand.
Danny wavers a little from time to time, and every time
he does, Teal'c is right there to shore him up.
his Jaffa guts. And his little snake, too.
Fine. Great. Now we're getting really irrational.
I'm thinking right about now it might be better to stop
thinking and just follow along behind. I keep going down
this road and I'm going to be punching everyone out.
seems to be the only thing I'm really good at lately. Other
than being a complete and absolute asshole, that is.
doesn't say a word as she walks beside me. Come to think
of it, nobody is saying much of anything. This has to be
some kind of first. If this was one of our usual post-mission
jaunts to the infirmary either she or Daniel would be yakking
about something. Or both of them at the same time. If the
reason for it wasn't so damned tragic I'd be thinking this
silence was a nice change of pace. Instead of wishing somebody
would say something so I wouldn't have to listen to it.
so long as that somebody isn't me.
I'm thinking again. Surprised my head doesn't explode.
Teal'c would quit looking at me like he's trying to think
of new and interesting things to do with my internal organs.
Once he's come up with an equally interesting way to remove
them from my body.
Daniel would just look at me.
been sitting here trying to think what to do, what to say.
How much to say. Whether to say anything at all. Wondering
if the French Foreign Legion is still looking for a few
that lets me out.
some good news. Daniel is okay. I shook him up a little,
but didn't really hurt him. Not physically, anyway. That,
at least, is a little bit of a load off my mind.
has been giving us all enough funny looks to more than
guarantee I am going to be having a little chat with the
man from Texas once he hears from her. But she lets us
stand this. I have to talk to him. I still don't know what
I'm going to say, but I'm sure going to say something.
got his name out when he cuts me and runs. What really
happened doesn't matter? Forget about it? What the hell
feeling in my gut tells me things are a lot worse than
I thought. I have to do something before what I've already
done can't be fixed.
to hurry after Daniel. Only to run into the six-foot and
then some Jaffa barricade suddenly directly in my path.
Teal'c, standing in the middle of the corridor, arms folded
across his chest, looking as if he'd very much rather be
wrapping them around my neck and twisting my head off.
to self: if by some miracle I manage to talk myself back
into Teal'c's good graces do not, and I repeat do not
ever piss him off again.
speak with DanielJackson," he booms at me. "Then I
will speak with you."
When exactly, did I lose control of this situation? Ah,
I remember. Right about the time my right fist connected
with Daniel's face.
say anything as Teal'c's eyes rake me over. With a parting
glance at Carter no warmer than any he's been firing in
my direction, he turns on his heel and stalks away.
and I just stand there and watch him book. I'm not moving,
she's not moving, alone at last.
Sam, walk out on me too. I know you want to.
you a cup of coffee, sir?" she says suddenly in a voice
trying to be cheerful and failing miserably. "I think we
need to talk."
comisssary is mercifully sparsely populated. While neither
one of us wanted to be somewhere more private I'm still
glad there aren't too many people around while we do this.
Carter looks like she feels the same way.
looks like she's got a much better handle on what it is
we should be talking about than I do. Not that I don't
know, I just don't know where to start.
you an apology, Sir," she starts out briskly, quickly.
A little too quickly. Like she wants to get it all out
before I have a chance to stop her.
there, Carter. Say whatever you want. Talk as long as you
want. Not really in any hurry for it to be my turn.
let you down, Sir," she continues resolutely onward, her
eyes unflinching and and scary-determined. "Lately I
haven't always been as effective a team member as I could
have been, nor has my performance as your second in command
been up to par. One of my primary responsibilities in the
field is make sure you know everything you need to know.
You need to be correctly apprised of all the pertinent
factors relevant to the mission in order to be able to
make informed command decisions. Even when I am not personally
the originator of the theories, observations, facts or
recommendations, if they are accurate and on point you
need to know about them. I've let other considerations
influence me and impair my judgment with respect to my
conduct in this regard."
Carter, easy with that two by four! You whack yourself
on the head with it any harder you'll be unconscious.
officer under your command I am required in the course
of the performance of my duties to suspend my personal
prejudices, beliefs and agendas in favour of that which
will best serve the successful completion of the mission
objectives. It is my duty to offer my full and uncompromising
support to suggested courses of action which will best
accomplish this. I've fallen a little short of the mark
on this count as well."
like what I'm hearing. Don't like what she's saying. Not
that she isn't saying anything I didn't already know. I
just don't like hearing it.
not exactly getting a charge out of saying it, either.
But she's saying it. She's facing it. I've got to give
her credit for that. She's got guts. So glad to see her
finally using them.
hate what I'm hearing but I'm even less fond of what the
two of us have been getting up to as of late. It's time
we both 'fessed up. Keep going, Carter. Let's just get
it all out, right here and now. All the cards on the table.
Facing it now is the only way we're ever going to be able
to face each other later.
knows the way things are looking at the moment we both
might be the only friends we've got left.
at me, a tight, grim set to her mouth. But the fire that
used to be in her eyes, that 'this sucks but I'm not going
to back away from it' tilt to her jaw is back. She's going
all the way to the finish line with this.
missed you, Major. Welcome back. Now all I have to do is
find the man I somehow mislaid along the way again and
we'll both be who we used to be. Before we turned into
whatever the hell it is we've been lately.
something else I haven't been doing," she continues,
smiling suddenly at me with more than a glint in her eye.
"Not simply as your second in command, but as your
friend. I haven't been standing up to you when you've been
full of shit and I've damned well known it. With all due
apologize for letting you down. For letting the team down.
I'll fully understand if you deem it necessary to replace
me, but I want to assure you it's not going to happen any
more. I have every intention of doing my job from now on.
If you'll let me stay on the team, Sir."
going to be a team for you to be on. God, I hope there's
going to be a team for you to be on. The same team you
were on before Colonel Bag of Crap screwed it all up with
his trusty right.
Major," I say to her apprehensive face. "First off,
let me say to you while I appreciate your candor, don't be
quite so hard on yourself. Your less than kind self assessment
aside, I'd be an even bigger shit-head than I already have
been if I raked you over the coals for not being up to
speed lately when I haven't exactly been the poster boy
for the 'Colonel of the Month' club myself. I've done my
own fair share of dropping the ball. If I was kicking anyone
off the team for not being up to scratch I'd have to start
ain't that the truth!
you?" I shrug and beam a high-watt, reassuring
smile at her hitting her stern, self accusing face head on,
making it waver. "The thought hadn't even crossed
my mind. Not only is there no need to, in my opinion - which
is the only one that counts here, by the way - there isn't
another 2IC in the SGC I'd want in your place. Besides,
I wouldn't want to deprive you of getting to tell me I'm
full of shit. I'm sure it'll come up it a lot."
a little and quickly lowers her gaze before catching herself
and making herself look back at me. Her eyes narrow slightly
with determination, and there is this hint of 'the cat
that swallowed the canary' thing happening with her mouth.
hoping I won't have to, but don't think I won't, Sir."
can I say?" I shrug at her. "We both know why my
eyes are brown."
the mouthful of coffee she was in the process of taking
clear across the table. Which means I end up wearing most
of it, but under the circumstances I don't mind.
I wipe off my face and suddenly it just feels….better.
Like a weight has been lifted, the air has cleared.
we're finally starting to be straight with each other for
the first time in a long time.
she says as she throws me a crooked grin. "It felt pretty
good to say all that. I honestly don't know what I've been
thinking, Sir. Being a part of SG-1 is the most important
thing in my life. It's all I want to do with my life right
now. It took doing something really stupid and almost throwing
it away to make me realize it."
The team. I bite back the urge to say, 'what team?' We're
entering the area of the conversation I've been most dreading,
and as it seems as if she's going to do most of the talking
here as well, who am I to stop her?
chickenshit who hopes she's going to make this a lot easier
for me than she should.
being a member of SG-1 is the most important thing
in the world to me, Colonel. I see that now. As briefly
interesting as certain other… possibilities… might have
temporarily seemed, my career comes first. The team
comes first. No question. There's no room in my life right
now for anything which might cause a conflict with my career
or my ability to function as a member of SG-1. Nor does
anything else interest me. At all."
that was pretty clear. Crystal, as a matter of fact, Carter.
That two by four? It's baa-aaack!
soften a little in sympathy as she looks at me. I can see
she really means what she just said, and she's okay. Oh,
more than okay. It's not a question of 'I had to make a
choice and it kills me and consequently my heart is breaking
into little bitty pieces, and sorry to have to tell you
this but you lose.' Nothing like that at all.
more like, 'wow, what the hell was I thinking thank God
I came to my senses just in time, I almost made a huge
mistake. And by the way, you lose.'
exactly how sure how I feel about this. I mean, like, so
it would have been so awful? She can dust me off just like
that and not even blink? I definitely must be slipping
in my old age.
crying out loud, O'Neill, you really are a horse's
ass! Now you're sulking 'cause someone you never
even wanted in the first place and was racking your brains
about trying to figure out a way to let down easy dumped
the sparkle in Carter's eye I'm thinking maybe she's seeing
a little too much just now so I just shrug and try to brazen
have to follow our hearts."
believe I just said that. Crap. She's looking at me funny,
now. This is just so not my day.
sir," she says softly. "We do. I intend to. You
should as well."
the hell is that supposed to mean?
first thing I have to do mend some fences with Daniel,"
she continues in a low voice, that unhappy frown on her
face again. "I've got some things to say to him he might
not want to hear, but if there's any chance he's ever going
to trust me again, I have to tell him what's been going
on. And why."
the good of the team?"
That sounded a little harsh. Not quite sure why I said
that. Also not quite sure why I am suddenly a little ticked
about the thought of her being able to be Daniel's friend
again when maybe… when maybe...
part of it." Her eyes are still saying a lot more than
she is. "But only a small part. I've got to do this for
Daniel. We've got to do this, Sir. He deserves to know
the truth. About everything that happened, and why. About
both of us. From both of us."
what 'truth' would that be, Carter?
fighting with herself. About what else it is she wants
to say to me and whether or not she should go all the way
and say it. Given what she's just said about how important
the team is to her, I can understand why she's having problems.
. 'Cause she must know what the 'truth' could mean for
gets to her feet. Conflict concluded. I guess the team
has won. Then she puts her hands on the table, leans towards
me and shows me I guessed wrong.
your heart, Sir," she says to me with gentle earnestness.
"Nothing is more important than that. Nothing."
Carter, if only it was that simple.
she's gone and I'm still sitting here. With a heart full
of lead and fear, feeling more alone than I've ever felt
in my life.
what my heart has been saying to me all this time. Where
it wants to lead me.
to Daniel's door.
is screaming louder than Heru'ur with his dick in a meat
grinder but I don't know if I should listen, because I
don't know if there's any point any more. I'd bust that
door down in a cold minute on the faintest hope of a prayer
of a ghost of a chance, but I don't know if I even have
the right to knock on it any longer.
know if Danny will even take my calls, never mind take
me back even only just as a friend. Never mind anything
he won't, I don't know what I'm going to do. Because there's
no getting away from the truth.
else matters to me without you. Nothing else matters to
me but you. There isn't anything else for me, Danny.
Or anyone. Nothing. No one.
it really is the truth. I'm nothing without him. I said
it to myself just now like admitting it was no big deal,
and now what I just said hits me. Like a tidal
wave crashing into me, washing me away.
with it everything I ever thought I was and am. A whole
life of lies laid open in an instant.
deal with this. I feel naked, exposed. Like everybody is
looking at me, seeing everything. I have to get out of
of the chair, out of the cafeteria, heading down the hall
heading… I don't know where I'm just going. Like going
anywhere is going to help. Like I can just walk away from
this, walk it off, turn a corner and everything will be
back the way it should be.
in the box, back on track, back where I knew what I was
and who I was, back where everything made sense.
least the kind of sense I wanted it to make.
is nuts. This can't be happening. This wasn't part of the
plan. My name is Jack O'Neill; I am a colonel in the United
States Air Force. Assigned to Stargate Command, the Team
Leader of SG-1. Once husband of Sara, father of Charlie.
This is who I am.
man who's not only admitted he's in love with his best
friend but has also admitted he's ready to chuck the whole
ball of wax in order to 'be' with that friend in a way
that cancels out everything he's ever believed himself
the hell am I? The colonel? The leader? The failed husband?
The one time father? Future best-friend buggerer?
Jack. Those are roles. Definitions. Yeah, but they filled
the spaces and gave me something to be. So I wouldn't have
to work on becoming anything. They are what I am, dammit.
What I've based my life on being. What's been most important
Well, Sara's gone. So is Charlie. You chucked the military
once, too. Almost did it again. If being Joe Colonel is
such a big deal to you, why would you do that?
time was for Sara, right? She left you, but you were going
get her back. You resigned to show her you had really changed,
that you were willing to quit the service to be with her.
Like she'd wanted you to before you left on the Abydos
mission. You were going to go after her and win her back.
On hands and knees if you had to. New start, new page in
the book, new life, new man.
that's what I told myself at the time.
that was true, if that was the real reason why I left,
then why didn't I go after her?
go after her. I never did. I resigned all right, but I
didn't leave. Didn't follow her, beg, plead, and camp at
her doorstep until she took me in. Hell, I didn't try at
all. Barely even spoke to her.
through the motions. Got me a big, fine house, kitted it
out in high style, made a nice and cozy love nest for myself.
A fine place to start making a lot of new, happy memories
needed was someone to start making them with.
go after her. I didn't do anything at all. Except sit there
alone in a place I didn't really need surrounded by a lot
of stuff that didn't mean a damned thing to me. Thinking
nights, up on the roof, staring at the stars. Thinking
about Daniel. Hating myself for coming back to nothing.
Hating him for letting me.
of a bitch. You had some fucking nerve. Getting in my face,
waking me up, giving me a reason to want to start living
again. I was all set to check out and you wouldn't let
me, you fucking bastard. You made me believe again. Believe
in life, and living and there was some hope for happiness
and a reason for going on and getting on with it.
me believe in love again, you prick. You made me believe
what did you do? You lied to me. What you gave with one
hand you turned around and took away with the other. You
left me - for her. Just ditched me, stayed behind and let
me go back to Earth to the big joke of the nothing waiting
for me. You not only ditched me, you had to go and be happy,
too. Bastard! Happy, loved, with her, without me. Rub salt
in the wound, why don't you. You had everything and I came
back to nothing.
to resign. If I'd taken that spot they offered me, if I'd
stayed close to that gate I'd have found a way back through
it. You couldn't have buried it deep enough to have kept
me away. I'd have gone back through, and made you come
back with me. Or I'd have killed you. I hated you that
much. Loved you…
God, where did that come from? Jesus, I'm shaking. Where
the hell am I? Less than a half an hour to the debriefing.
I have to pull myself together. I'm coming apart at the
flips his lid in the halls of the SGC. Film at eleven.'
where I am now. My office is just down the hall. Thank
it to a chair just before my legs give out. The door's
shut and safely locked behind me, it's good and dark in
here, nice and quiet. The earthquake happening inside me
is gathering speed, seismic disturbances registering in
like a fucking leaf.
you, Danny? No, no I don't hate you, but I've been plenty
pissed at you. For a long time, I guess. You keep leaving
me and I know I can't take it 'cause I've already been
through having you die on me three times and it almost
did me in.
time you died you brought me back to life. Charlie going
had almost taken me all the way with him and when I went
after Ra's men I admit it, I was hoping one of them would
finish the job and put me out of my misery. Then I got
my wish, was just about to finally get blasted into oblivion
and damned if you didn't throw yourself in front of me
and take the shot for me.
then as far as I was concerned you weren't even worth the
energy it would have taken to pick on you and there you
were, saving my life and getting yourself killed in the
bargain. Hell of a thing to do for someone you barely knew
who you knew damned well had no use for you - it sure impressed
the crap out of me. Still does. But I never said so then
any more than I do now.
to think of it that rather 'grand gesture' kinda set the
tone for a lot that's happened between us since, hasn't
it, Danny? You're still throwing yourself in front of me
and taking the bullets. It's a wonder you're not a freakin'
sieve by now you've taken so much shit for me, and from
me. I wish I could say it's done as much for me since as
it did then. But then, I haven't let it, now have I?
goons killed you, but you didn't stay dead. Like I said
to you once before, you're surprisingly difficult to kill.
Thank God for that.
time you died I almost walked away from all of this a second
you die. Or - thought I did. The flames, the screams… you
screaming for me. For me…
took you from me, right before my eyes. I couldn't do
anything to stop it, to help you. Couldn't do anything
but watch you die.
And suddenly, nothing made sense any more; nothing meant
anything to me any more. I didn't know what I was going
to do, but I knew I couldn't go through that gate ever
again without you. It was over. Finished. The gate brought
you back to me and now it had taken you away again.
done with it. Done with the Air Force. Done with everything.
Even said so to Hammond.
of it meant a damned thing to me without you. It didn't.
Nothing did. How could I have forgotten that, Danny?
did. I made it all go away. I was mad at myself for letting
you do it to me again. Pissed at you for leaving me and
making me go through all that, thinking you were dead and
you'd gone and booked on me again. I was furious with you
for leaving me. Even though it wasn't your fault and it
wasn't really real after all. 'Cause there you were, alive,
April Fool on O'Neill.
Jackson, Resurrection Boy. And for his next trick, watch
him come back from the dead - again.
myself forget how losing you made me feel because there
was no way I was ever going to let you do it to me again.
did. God, you did. You left me again. Made me leave you
behind to die alone. No mistake this time. I watched the
ship blow up with you on it. But you weren't on it, you
sneaky bastard. You pulled another life out of your hat
and gave me back mine again at the same time.
I have forgotten how good it felt to hold you, to feel
you alive, warm and breathing in my arms after the way
I'd last seen you? The way you looked when I left you.
have nightmares about that moment. Still sometimes see
you lying there, bleeding and dying before my eyes, telling
me you'll watch my back as I turn mine on you and leave
you there. Only in these dreams, you don't make it.
did. God, somehow you did. There you were, coming toward
me, whole and well again - alive - that funny little 'sorry
to mess up your universe but I'm alive' expression on your
face. Like you were almost apologizing for having pulled
your own ass out of the fire.
but you would feel like they had to make excuses for managing
to beat the odds.
but you would make me want to kiss you hard, long and full
in the middle of the gate room not giving a shit who saw
me or what would happen to me if I did.
I want to be kissing you right now, and damn the consequences.
I am so screwed. If I do what the man wants to do, the
colonel is through. But if the colonel turns his back on
what the man wants, then the man is through.
hell am I, the colonel or the man? What is the colonel
without the man? What is the man, without the colonel?
I just answered my own question, here. The colonel has
been trying to get along without the man and hasn't he
just been doing a fine job of things?
Jack O'Neill, the man. I don't need the colonel. He's a
macho prick and he needs to get a life. He's sure never
done me any favours. Once I get what Jack O'Neill needs
sorted I'll see what I can do for the colonel but if I
have to choose between them the man wins.
taking everything I have to stop myself from leaping over
the table, taking Daniel in my arms and trying to tell
him how sorry I am. He looks so tired and worn to the bone
I don't know how he's managing to keep his eyes open. Never
mind being capable of speaking remarkably coherent sentences.
He's so pale he's scaring me. His face is whiter than a
sheet. The part of it, that is, not being overtaken by
the multi-coloured sprawl of the bruise coming up over
most of half of his face.
Teal'c, he looks like hell and yeah, I'm the one who did
it to him. You know it, I know it, he knows it and if you
want to take it outside already I'm more than good to go.
need you to tell me what I've done. I fucking well know
what I've done. Enough already. Beat the crap out of me
if it'll make you feel better, just get out of my face
about it. I'll deal with you and your problems with me
in due course. Daniel comes first.
This is interesting. If I read my Major right she's going
to be taking care of my Teal'c problem for me. Cool. I
can see a plan happening. We are just about through here.
Daniel is going to bolt, that's a given. He won't be going
far, though. Only as far as his bed here on the base. He
won't try driving when he's this tired, and it wouldn't
occur to him to ask anyone to drive him home.
looks like he could use a lift. I'm sure he'd much rather
be at home than crashing here on base. And with any luck,
by the time I get him there he'll rest a lot easier. After
I tell him a few things.
will be good. This will work. With Carter running interference,
keeping Teal'c busy I'll be able to get to Daniel. Finally,
maybe something's going my way, today.
Dammit, George, does it have to be now?
It does. Curses, foiled again.
he goes, first one out of the starting gate. Run For Cover
Boy. Faster than a speeding bullet. He's got a good head
start, but I could have caught him. 'Cause there's Carter,
grabbing a hold of Teal'c's arm, hauling him off for 'a
word'. Just like I figured she was going to.
It woulda worked like a charm.
do you want, General? As if I didn't know.
has to have been the slickest piece of fast-talking I have
done in a long time. Hammond isn't any more enlightened
about the actual situation, but he trusts I will 'take
care of it'. Whatever 'it' is.
on it. Already on my way. There might yet be time to pull
this thing off. As long as Carter is still giving Teal'c
the third degree I just might -
up there had to pick a day to finally get me why did it
have to be today?
Danny. I tried. I really did. It looks like you're going
to have to wait a little longer.
of Doom is closing on me. He's big, but I'm a bigger jerk,
so I figure we're pretty evenly matched. Whatever, I'm
ready for whatever he's got in mind.
we get this over with the sooner I can get to what's on
you wanna talk or punch me out?" We might as well cut
straight to the chase. It saves so much time.
you in a particular hurry to be injured, O'Neill?" Teal'c
rumbles as he reaches my side. "If that is the case, I
can oblige you."
have a choice, I'd rather talk." Well, I would. Only an
idiot asks for as much trouble as Teal'c could give them.
is fortunate," he growls. Still not giving an inch
or showing the slightest sign he's in any mood to be
forgiving. "Had you not been amenable to discussion I
would have had no choice but to have hurt you."
I'm being reasonable and you won't get to?" What did I
just say about idiots? Just can't leave well enough alone,
can you, Jack?
shoots half way up his forehead and I'm suddenly thankful
Teal'c seems to have cultivated a lot more self-restraint
than I have.
day is far from over, O'Neill."
ya. Shutting up now.
me back to his room and we have a little squat down in
the middle of the floor. When he's doing scary, Teal'c
looks even scarier by candle light. He gives me a glance
would send a serial killer crying to his mommy and then
closes his eyes. I guess he wants to mellow out a bit before
he tells me exactly how he's going to kill me. I'll just
sit here and wait. Quietly. Until he gets back to me.
sit. So I wait. Nice room. Not that he's done a lot with
it or anything, but it's, well, him. Maybe I'll just play
around with the candle to kill some time. Daniel must be
asleep by now. I won't bother him. It wouldn't make a lot
of sense to wake him up to offer to drive him home so he
can sleep. I guess talking it out will
have to wait 'til morning. First thing, though. Absolutely
the first thing. He could be still awake. Not very likely,
but it's possible. I'll stop by, look in on him, just to
room. Crap! Burned my finger!
know how Teal'c sits like that for hours at a time. Ten
minutes of O'Neill trying to assume the position and my
knees are screaming.
intends to leave SG-1."
voice sounds so loudly and unexpectedly in the crushing
silence I nearly have to peel myself off the ceiling I
jump so high. While I'm trying to get my heart to start
again I register what he's just said to me.
What? How do you - Did he tell you this?"
still hasn't opened his eyes. His voice sounds calmer,
less cold. "He did not wish to, but he confirmed my suspicions
when I voiced them."
Why? Because I hit him? Shit, well if that's all I'll go
and apologize right now -"
believes he is the cause of the current discontent within
SG-1. He believes if he leaves we will once again be able
to function as a harmonious and cohesive unit."
him? There is no SG-1 without Daniel. No SG-1 I want any
part of, anyway.
does he do that? What is he thinking? That's wrong. He's
wrong. He's not the problem. God, he's the only one who's
been holding us together and getting us through. Daniel's
not the problem. I'm the problem."
pleased to hear you say that, O'Neill." Teal'c is looking
at me at last. Probably just the way the candlelight is
flickering, but I could swear I almost see a hint of warmth
in those dark, formerly extremely frosty eyes. "I feared
you would seek to avoid your responsibility in this matter.
In the past you have not always shown yourself to be especially
disposed toward facing personal truths."
here's another one going on about 'truth.' So, does everyone
know how I feel about Daniel, and if so why didn't they
let me in on it?
of what he just said, you schmuck!
to do something about this. I have to fix this. He can't
leave me. He can't. Not again. Not now.
Teal'c what now? Crap, he's gearing up for
something. The Angel of Death's larger, badder, scarier
older brother? Looking at him right now glaring back at
must restore your honour in this situation by making a full
confession to DanielJackson. O'Neill," Teal'c intones.
" You must ask his forgiveness, and you must tell him the
truth. He cannot be allowed to believe he is at fault.
He has done no one harm, and he must not continue to believe
he has. If he still wishes to leave SG-1, it must be because
he truly feels it is the right thing for him to do. Not
because he wrongly believes he must, in order to spare
those he loves."
what Teal'c is saying and it scares me. I've been so wrapped
up in what Jack O'Neill wants I've forgotten I have no
idea what Daniel thinks of me now.
planning on doing something spontaneous, off the cuff and
insane like rushing down to his
room, throwing the door open and screaming, 'kiss me quick,
I love you.' I must be losing my mind. 'I'm sorry I hit
you, can you forgive me, let's kiss and make up and be
pals again' is nowhere even close to 'I'm sorry I hit you,
can you forgive me let's kiss and make up, by the way I
love you, how do you feel about fucking your best friend?'
can't. I can't tell him everything." I sound like a crazy
man. I'm starting to lose it again as I realize I can't
tell him anything. Can't take the chance he'll hate me
even more than he already does. I'll move heaven and earth
to get him to stay. To keep him close to me. That'll have
to do. Don't know how I'll make it do, but I will.
put a bullet in my brain before I let him leave me again.
So I'll repair the friendship and keep my mouth shut about
the rest of it. Too much to lose to play it any other way.
God I came to my senses before I ruined everything.
wondering when it was that Teal'c became telepathic. The
bastard has been holding out on us. He has to be reading
my mind 'cause what he says next nearly takes me out entirely.
has not turned from you even though he believes you hate
him. Why would you think he would hate you if you tell
him you love him?"
asleep. That can mean a lot of different things. He's got
varying levels of unconsciousness, depending on what condition
he was originally in before he hit the sheets. If he's
wound up, nervous and suffering from caffeine poisoning
a fly landing across the room would wake him up. If he's
worked himself into such a state of exhaustion he's too
stupid to stand up he falls into a coma you couldn't get
him out of if you blew the mountain up around him.
at him tells me I can stay for a while and watch him sleep
and he'll never even know I was here.
down on the bed beside him and reaching over to turn on
the bedside lamp doesn't even make his eyelids twitch.
He's out. He's so out I know I can do a little more than
look at him.
because I've done this before.
him, watching him sleep when he's stayed over. While I've
been watching over him in the infirmary. When we've been
out in the field and I can't sleep, and there he's been,
right beside me, out like a light, never knowing I've been
more than just watching.
down and touch his hair. So soft and fine. Like silk. I've
always loved the way it feels between my fingers. I miss
the long hair he used to have. Can't weave my fingers through
it now, really feel it curling around them the way I used
to. It's darker now, too. But it still feels like silk.
like silk. He has the softest skin. Astonishing how soft
and smooth it is, seeing as how he's a man and he spends
as much time outdoors as he does. But it's soft. God, I
can't believe how soft. I can't get enough of it. My hand
traces the lines of his face, lightly lingering where I
have hurt him, moving on, feeling the smoothness of his
are itching, my throat tightening. He's lying sprawled
before me, splayed all over the bed, only a blanket between
me and everything he is, unconscious and completely unaware
I'm here. Also completely unaware I don't know how I'm
stopping my hand from finding out what his skin feels like…
on his chest is burning. I'm surprised it doesn't leave
a mark where it's been resting when I move it, ever so
slightly, just a little lower.
twitches. He sighs suddenly, deeply, making a low, moaning
noise that sound like, almost like…
to get out of here or I'm not going to be able to control
myself. I want him so much I'm almost coming in my pants
just looking at him. Touching him, feeling him, smelling
say that out loud? God, I think I did.
here - get out of here, Jack. Get out of here, now.
my hand away and bolt for the door. I'm almost there when
he makes another sound, like a sob. Then I hear it.
still sound asleep but he says my name like his heart is
breaking. I look back at him and see a single tear trickling
down his cheek, shining in the soft light bathing his face.
isn't there any way to get this goddamned gate to dial
faster? Give it some gas, will you, Carter? Shake a leg
or something! Jesus Christ, Danny's halfway across the
universe, that bastard is doing God knows what to him and
I'm standing here watching this damned wheel spin in slow
why the hell did I go home last night? Why did I leave?
Stupid, stupid, STUPID! I should have stayed with him,
stayed right where I was, been there when he woke up. Maybe
if I'd been here when that Vomar prick had his little chat
with Hammond I could have stopped all this from happening.
Could have stopped Daniel before that bastard tricked him
into going back.
this is some kind of nightmare. Danny's gone, I don't know
what the hell is happening to him and we never got a chance
to - I never got a chance to say anything to him. To tell
God, it isn't too late. Or whoever the hell is listening,
if anybody is. I know I don't deserve another chance and
there's no reason I should get one but I swear, just one
more chance, that's all I need. I won't jam out this time,
I won't run out on him. I'll tell him, I'll take whatever
contempt he wants to heap on me, hell, I'll even let him
hit me if it makes him feel any better. Just give me a
chance to finally do right by him.
I'm not too pleased with this situation."
yeah, George, that makes two of us. Give me the pep talk
and then get out of my way. I'm outta here.
the turn events have already taken, it's against my better
judgment to allow you to return to P5J-705 unaccompanied.
It doesn't seem wise. His assurances you will be offered
safe conduct notwithstanding, given the Vomar's history
of erratic behaviour we have no guarantee he won't make
you a prisoner as well the second you step through the
willing to take the risk, sir." Damned straight I
am! Not much I wouldn't do for Daniel. "Besides,
I don't see as we have a whole lot of other options. We
don't know for sure where Daniel is being held and we got
a thumbs down on mounting any sort of rescue mission -
large or small scale."
want to do anything that could mess up the treaty, now
do we? Sometimes I really hate this shit.
going through alone is our only shot at getting Daniel back.
The Vomar was pretty specific. Daniel's allowed one witness.
Me and only me. Anyone else comes with me and all bets
are off. The alliance, the treaty, the trinium, never mind
what it would do to our odds of getting Daniel back in
of it can all go fuck itself. That last bit. Getting Danny
back in one piece. That's all I care about.
is looking at me like a man who suddenly knows more than
he is saying. I've been seeing a lot of that look lately.
starting to really piss me off.
suddenly gets kind and sad, and he pats me on the shoulder
like he wishes he could tell me he knew everything was
going to work out okay.
care, Jack. Bring our boy home."
be coming back without him. I mean it. Hammond knows it
too; I can see it written all over his face as he backs
away. I shoot a glance over at Carter and Teal'c, standing
on my other side.
luck, Sir," she says, in a small, brave voice.
Major. I have a feeling I'm going to need it.
will succeed, O'Neill," Teal'c solemnly announces.
"I know you will do what needs to be done."
roll around inside me as I walk forward into the light.
Maybe he knows something I don't know, and I don't fully
get what he was trying to tell me, but somehow hearing
him say it makes me feel suddenly calmer and less crazy.
is probably a much better way to be, all things considered.
welcoming committee is standing there waiting for me when
I walk out the other side of the gate. The head lap dog,
Arlit, I think his name was, doesn't say a word as he pats
me down for weapons. The whole bunch of them keep up the
stone-cold silent routine as we begin the trek from the
gate to the city.
is shining and the road to the city leads through about
five miles of inevitable forest which is actually quite
scenic and tranquil, and under different circumstances
I'd probably allow myself to appreciate it a bit.
is, I wish I had a chainsaw.
with the trees. Take out every single goddamned one of
them. Finish up with the Vomar. Oh look, that's the Big
V. All over.
isn't helping, this isn't helping. I have to get my head
straight, calm down, start thinking. No matter how much
it hurts. Running off at the mouth and giving into my behaviour
patterns of late of shooting first and thinking later aren't
going to help here. There's too much at stake to take the
easy road of falling back on getting stupid.
run it again. What happened? What do we know?
hell of a lot. Hammond and the Vomar have a conversation
during the course of SG-9's routine check-in and something
gets said that causes his royal 'V-ness' to have a hissy
fit. Two hours later SG-9 comes back through the gate saying
they have no idea what is going on but all of a sudden
they are major persona non grata and everyone from Earth
is going to stay that way until Daniel 'presents' himself
and provides an explanation for the insult. What insult,
we don't know, but apparently there is one that has to
be dealt with and Danny is the only one the Vomar will
talk to about the whole thing.
bless him, smells a rat, but a lot's riding on this damned
treaty and Daniel, being Daniel is confident he can handle
the Vomar. He assures Hammond it is probably nothing -
someone has likely inadvertently broken one of their little
taboos, and he'll bow and scrape a little and have it smoothed
over in no time.
let him go. Alone. God, Daniel, why wasn't I here? Hammond
didn't know all of it. He didn't see the way that shit-head
slobbered all over you. No way I would have let you go
back there by yourself. No way I would have let him get
his hands on you. Screw the treaty.
I here? This never would have happened. 'Cause now that
dick-wad is screaming Daniel is the one he's pissed at,
some sort of insult to his 'honour' Daniel has to be punished
for and I'm supposed to show up to watch it happen.
decided the Vomar is going to be getting a language lesson
from Jack O'Neill. He's going to be introduced to a few
choice Earth phrases. Such as: in a pig's eye. When hell
freezes over. That's what you think. And my personal favourite:
over your dead body.
that last one isn't strictly correct usage but I like my
stinking trees! Are we there yet?
city looks like something you'd find squatting in the middle
of a jungle somewhere in South America. Without the jungle.
With indoor plumbing and electricity. It's a little confusing.
Daniel thinks the vReel are a mixture of the original
transplanted humans and a more technologically advanced
civilization who came here to get away from it all and decided
to stay. He was quite fascinated with all the stuff he
was finding out about their history and such.
he looked pretty excited. It wasn't as if he actually tried
to tell me much about it. Because it wasn't as if I gave
him much reason to believe I'd be interested.
dis-honour guard is leading me toward the main pyramid in
the middle of the city. The one I took one look at when
we were here before and declined to climb the one thousand
or so odd steps up to the top in order to be able to stand
around and pretend to be interested in the ceremony we
were invited to witness. Daniel went, of course. Teal'c
went with him. I don't remember what the hell Carter and
I did. It doesn't matter now.
I'm being invited to another 'ceremony'. I'm trying very
hard not to think about what kind as we start up the steps.
to the top and when I see what's going on I'm shifting
pretty quick from apprehensive to actively shitting bricks.
is topped by a wide platform. A few guys kitted out in
early aboriginal, your standard loincloth, hinky feathered
head-dresses and war-paint, standing there looking like
statues with attitude. Backing up the Vomar, who's also
traded in his more overstated threads for the costume du
jour so he'll blend in with the others.
happens to be standing beside a huge stone slab in the
middle of the platform. Looking at the guy stripped down
to next to nothing, painted up and tied up spread-eagled
just got here and I hate it already.
turns his head toward us as soon as he realizes someone
else is here. He sees me, and the look he gives me cuts
me to the quick.
Surprise. Genuine disbelief. He sees I'm here, but he doesn't
believe it. Doesn't believe, honestly didn't believe I
lasts a second, but it's more than enough to make me wish
I'd never even been born. Especially when the surprise
is quickly replaced with another emotion.
Not for himself. For me.
he would need to be afraid for me. I don't get it.
I do. Aw, crap. I know what this is all about. God, God,
God! Still at, it, aren't you, Daniel? Still trying to
save me from myself.
way. This stops here and it stops NOW!
are here," the Vomar booms as he looks up from Daniel and
glares at me. The prick loves to posture. Loves the sound
of his own voice. He's in mighty fine form as he crosses
his arms and puffs out his chest at me.
five minutes alone with you in a dark alley right about
now, you son of a bitch.
O'Neill," the puffed up, lad-de-dah, feather-wearing,
hinkey-looking shit-head spits at me. "You are
responsible for this man and his conduct. Therefore it is
proper for you to be made aware of his dishonourable actions
toward one of your allies and to witness his punishment.
It is important you be informed of his disgraceful acts,
as you will no doubt wish to properly admonish him yourself
once you have learned how he has also dishonoured your
team and your world through his falsehoods."
I definitely know what this is all about, now.
do not wish this incident to cause difficulties between
your people and mine."
right. Pull the other one, Curly.
regret the unfriendly steps I was forced to take in order
to compel him to return to face his punishment, but they
were unfortunately necessary. Our laws are quite specific
in what they require of us and this is a very serious matter.
Honour must be restored before there can be any renewed
friendship between our peoples. This matter must be addressed.
However, I do not wish it said I acted incorrectly or unfairly
in accomplishing this. Or that I punished the wrong man."
at me, his lip curling back from his teeth in a challenging
snarl. Okay, bucko, bring it on.
your beef?" I snap at him. As if I didn't know.
reaches down, grabs Danny by the chin and wrenches his
face around so the bruise on it is facing me like an accusation.
taskek tells your leader I was
responsible for this injury!" V snarls. "Tells your General
Hammond I struck him! This is a lie. He baldly defames
me, insults my honour by insinuating I would treat an honoured
guest and ally so shabbily, and then compounds the offence
by refusing to recant this lie. He will say nothing.
He will not admit he has lied, nor will he divulge the
true circumstances by which he received the injury"
continues his little tirade, smiling smugly at me as he
releases Daniel's chin and languidly trails his fingers
along his jaw, then down his neck. I'm fighting back a
red mist of rip-snorting rage wanting to come screaming
right out of me at the sight of that bastard pawing him
and Daniel's fearless, unflinching endurance of the manhandling.
him once more and if it's the last thing I do I will
kill you. For days....
can be only two reasons for the original falsehood and
his current refusal to defend himself." The Vomar is
still talking and still pawing. Killing him for a week
won't be long enough. "He was struck for behaving
dishonourably and wishes to hide this fact from your General
with this lie. If this is the truth, he deserves to be
doubly punished. He is not an honourable man - scarcely
a man at all, and deserves little better from us than our
Fucking bastard. You have no idea what you're
talking about. Or who.
the one who struck him acted without honour and he is lying
to protect this coward from the consequences of his actions.
If this is the truth, Daniel has my apologies for thinking
ill of him, but his desire to protect this unworthy does
not change what he has done. He must still be punished.
My honour must still be restored. The truth will do this,
but if I cannot have it, there is only one course of action
left to me."
finally takes his slimy paws off Danny and holds out his
hand, at the same time fixing me with a look making me
want to puke. One of the guys behind him steps forward
and gives him a whip.
will bleed until he has bled enough."
Don't!" The protest explodes out of me. "You don't
have to hurt him. You say getting the truth will be enough to
set this right? I'll give it to you."
- don't!" Daniel cries. "You don't understand -"
up, Daniel!" I roar at him.
hit him. Those same, damned words I've said to him too
many times before. To shut him out, to turn him away, to
deliberately hurt him. I see I've done it again by saying
them, as just for a second, he doesn't understand what
I am really saying.
made a career out of doing the right thing, Daniel. More
than had your turn at being the one who gets to do the
'being noble' thing. Keep your damned mouth shut and get
down off the pedestal buddy boy, it's Jack's turn. 'Cause
if I don't come clean about all of this now there's no
way either one of us is ever going to be able to respect
isn't the only one who needs to restore his honour. I've
got a whole lot of catch-up to do and it starts right here.
said another word and yet I can see Danny gets it. He
understands. Jesus. After all this time of getting it wrong
between us we've finally gotten something right.
better already. Just 'cause he knows no matter what happens
next, I'm here. I'm here for him and with him and he's
do you have to tell me, Colonel?" The Vomar looks at me
calmly, expectantly, as he idly tapes the handle of the
whip against Daniel's chest.
the one. I did it. I hit Daniel. You were right. It was
not only a dishonourable thing to have done, by the laws
of my people I should have been severely punished for doing
it. He lied to the general to protect me from this punishment.
He meant no disrespect to you. He was only thinking about
He's smiling that smile again. Looking mighty pleased with
himself. If I thought things were tense before something
tells me they are about to get a whole lot dicier.
also tells me Daniel isn't really the one the Vomar had
the beef with after all. And I've just given his royal
prickness exactly what he wants.
one truth satisfies one point of honour," he gloats.
"And reveals another which needs to be addressed. My
honour is restored by your admission. But the matter is not
Not surprised. Going to have a heart attack and die from
not surprised. Here it comes.
committed this offence while you were still on dUrmir soil,
did you not?"
and smile, you bastard, you know you've got me. Short and
curlies and all.
so. You have violated our laws on our soil; therefore you
are bound by them in the resolution of this matter. You
must answer for what you have done according to our laws
and customs. You must be punished."
with the not surprised. This is what Daniel was trying
to warn me about. This is why he was keeping mum, and intended
to take the beating on my behalf.
okay, Danny, I'm a big boy. I did the crime. I can take
what's coming to me.
offer you the same choice I offered Daniel. You may meet
the requirements of honour by taking the path of truth.
Or you may accept the judgment of the whip. The choice
What truth? What the hell is he talking about? What more
is there to say? I did it. I'm guilty. What more does he
nods at someone behind me. I get swiped and knocked down
to my knees as the man of the hour skirts the slab and
starts to stride toward me. I just stay where I am, waiting
for him to get to me. Daniel's scared for me, looking at
me like he wants to do something, but he's not saying a
have any more of a clue what's going on now than I do.
stands over me, then turns and brandishes the handle of
the whip back in Daniels direction.
struck this man without cause, dishonoured him. You admit
after having dishonoured him you stayed silent and allowed
him to utter a lie which shielded your reprehensible act.
Thereby placing him in a position of compromising his own
honour for your sake and having to suffer grievously for
it. All to hide what you had done."
what happened. But it isn't what I meant. You understand
that, don't you Danny? I wouldn't have let you, I mean,
if I had known, it's what you wanted me to do and yet it
damned well, wasn't, Jack. But that's okay, 'cause I'm
going to make it right. No matter what it takes.
yet you are here now, finally ready to face what you have
done. You claim you are willing to at last answer for what
you should have admitted to in the first place."
remove the stain of your actions against Daniel you must
tell him why you are doing this. Why you are here, why
you have decided to confess to all your transgressions
and be rightly punished in his stead in order to redeem
him. Here and now, tell him the reason for your sudden
decision to finally admit to and answer for what you have
done. Tell him the truth."
a sudden, the Vomar isn't smiling anymore. He no longer
seems like some trumped up martinet drunk on his own power,
either. He's looking very wise, very kind and right out
of the blue I'm looking into the eyes of someone I've never
who's telling me if I don't do the right thing right here
and now I'll lose everything. 'Cause if I back away from
this now I'll never have the guts to do it again.
the right thing' doesn't mean allowing myself to be trussed
up in Daniel's place so I can have the crap whipped out
of a bitch. You set me up.
and look at Daniel. His eyes are wide, I don't think he's
even breathing as he hovers between disbelief and expectation,
waiting for what's going to come out of my mouth. I didn't
really need it, but the expression of painfully naked hope
shimmering in his eyes makes it just a little easier.
Here it comes.
him. I love you, Danny."
is satisfied," the Vomar says in a gentle voice.
"You may take him from this place and go home."
my feet and sprinting toward Daniel. It isn't until I'm
hacking at the ropes holding him I realize I don't remember
how the knife got in my hand.
lying on the slab, staring wide-eyed up at me as I cut
him loose. He's breathing hard like he's scared, and his
face is quite the playground of conflicting emotions. He's
mighty confused right now, and I can't say I blame him.
Even though I've said what I can see he's wanted to hear,
he doesn't quite know why.
really say what I just said? Did I mean it? Or did I just
say it to get him off?
That was one of those 'Freudian slips' if ever I heard
one. Now that he's mine, my mind is heading straight to
Mine. Oh yeah. I like the sound of that.
about thirty seconds away from pounding on my chest and
howling at the moon as I grab him up from the slab and
hug the shit out of him.
not knowing what to do. Wanting to hug me back and yet
still not daring to trust he can.
meant what I said," I tell him as I nuzzle his neck and
squeeze him tighter. With a small sigh of relief he sags
into me and clutches me back.
for coming for me," he whispers as he hugs me.
"Thanks for what you just did."
a lump in my throat. "I didn't do anything. Except be the
jerk that got you in this mess in the first place. I'm
sorry I hit you. I'm sorry for… everything. I didn't mean
it. I'd do anything to be able to take it all back."
know, I know." His voice is as soothing as the hand
stroking the back of my head. I know you didn't mean it. Don't
worry about it. It's forgotten."
He means it. It is. It really is. He's just wiped out the
blot between us in an instant. Cancelled. Gone. Like it
all never happened.
deserve it but I'll take it. Take him too, while I'm at
him off the slab trying very hard not to notice there's
an awful lot of bare, smooth, sweaty skin pressed up against
me. I was hardly in a position to have time to appreciate
so much of Danny on display earlier but I'm finding it
difficult now to keep my hands from doing what they wanted
to do last night.
to concentrate on keeping Mister Happy from getting much
happier until there are a whole lot less people around.
suddenly pushes away from me and shoots an indignant look
at the Vomar. Who's been standing beside us for I don't
know exactly how long, a rather indulgent smile on his
can't go home like this!" he complains as he looks down
at himself. "I'd like my uniform back now, if you
shrugs. "That is impossible, Daniel," he replies
with a slightly doting smile. "Your clothing was burned.
It was a necessary part of the purification ritual."
gapes at him. "You're kidding me, right?" he
shakes his head.
I don't believe this!" he wails.
my boy. Only a couple of minutes ago he was looking at
getting thrashed within an inch of his life and now he's
all bent out of shape because he's only wearing an apron
and he's shy.
I shouldn't mention someone stole the ass-end of his loincloth.
see what he's so upset about. I have no problem with what
he isn't wearing. But on second thought, while I'm enjoying
the view I'm not sure I want the entire SGC getting an
eyeful. That ass is mine.
crazy about the way the Vomar is checking it out, either.
to wonder if maybe I'm the jealous type.
Daniel is looking pretty miserable. He's moved a little
away from me, his face redder than a beet, blinking up
a storm, massive pout alerts happening in lower lip land.
His arms wrapped around himself in that too familiar self-protective
not having a very good time.
to the Vomar. It still feels a bit odd the way things have
gone from freaking serious to buddy buddy, just like that,
but even though he's smiling at the pair of us like an
indulgent parent he's still the one calling the shots
around here. So even though it seems like he likes us again
we still can't do squat until he says so.
yeah, but I should be pretty used to being confused by
have a heart," I ask him, reasonable-like. Guy to
guy. " Do you guys have something he could borrow to
cover up a bit, and maybe he can wash some of the paint off or
is possible," the Vomar nods solemnly, just the faintest
amused gleam in his eye.
melts me with a look of unabashed gratitude that curls
Now I'm a hero. Doesn't take much to please this boy.
doesn't mean he's ever going to get any less than everything
horny toads, I thought we'd never get away from
those guys! The Vomar wanted to throw us a party to celebrate
everybody being friends again, but I managed to beg off.
Without offending anyone in the process.
you not, those vReel are crazier than geese on speed. I
mean, one minute they're threatening to slit your throat
'cause you pissed them off picking a daisy you never knew
you weren't supposed to, but after getting you to pat your
head, spin around in a circle and spit into the wind it's
like nothing ever happened and they want to throw you a
party lasting a week and marry you to their sister in the
the recommendations Daniel made in the debrief was for
our people to keep to ourselves for the most part, not
mingle with the locals and definitely not headquarter in
the city until all personnel attached to dUrmir were brought
up to speed about the way things are done here. He also
stressed the importance of the official liaison becoming
an expert in vReel culture.
all of this I'm going to be adding more than my two cents
of support to those points in my own mission report.
thinking maybe the Vomar really isn't such a prick after
all. He never owned up to deliberately staging the whole
thing in order to pull one over on us, but if I didn't
know any better I'd swear he put two and two together and
set the whole thing up. I don't know why. I know he's more
than fond of Daniel. Maybe he just likes happy endings,
even though he isn't going to be the one who gets to go
walking into the sunset with him.
his reasons, one thing I can say for the guy, he's sure
a much more gracious loser than I could ever be, if our
positions were reversed. Gotta respect him for that.
also got a hell of a sense of humour. The only thing he
was willing to provide Daniel in the way of a 'cover up'
was a pair of sandals and this cape deal barely big enough
to do the job.
the paint came off. Well, most of it, anyway.
said our good-byes and now we're tromping through the trees.
Daniel's holding onto that cape for dear life and he's
got it wound so tightly around himself I'm surprised he
can breathe. He's not saying a word. Skittish. Head lowered
so I can't see what's going on behind his eyes as he walks
I know what he's chewing on. Putting it in technical terms,
he's well and truly freaked. I just took everything he
though he knew and understood about Jack O'Neill and shot
a lot of big, freaking holes through it. He thought he
had me pegged and now he's trying to deal with finding
out everything he thought he knew is out the window. He
hasn't got a clue what to do or say and it's driving him
be driving him nuts in a completely different way. Besides,
if he thinks we are going to just stroll back to the gate
and walk through it like nothing happened back there he's
got another thing coming.
for your thoughts," I say to him as I grab his ass.
so bad his hands fly all over the place, making him lose
his grip on that damned cape. He makes a grab for it as
it falls away and drops to the ground but I get a hold
of him first.
you want to know what I'm thinking about?" I growl at him
as I pull him into me. His eyes widen and he hitches in
his breath as he feels how hard I am.
hello to my little friend," I leer.
is quickening, pupils dilating. He licks his lips nervously
as he tries not to look at me closing on him.
so little, Jack," he grins nervously, trying for casual
and just not making it. At all.
an overachiever. He grows on you."
gulps and tries to push away from me. I grab his ass with
both hands and pull him back in tighter. He gasps as our
groins reconnect with a vengeance. Aha. Just as I thought.
Your mouth might be trying to say no, but parts of you
are definitely saying yes, oh yes.
he pants as he continues to struggle weakly against me.
"Don't! Uh… I… we - we shouldn't. You shouldn't. We
have to… have to think… think about…"
him crushed to me, caged by my arms, hands imprisoned against
my chest. "What are you saying to me?" I breathe
into him as I lick his neck. "You don't want to?"
he moans as he lifts his head to let me get at more skin.
He shudders as I devour his throat, like he's going to
shake apart. "I mean, yes! I mean, I - I want to, but we
- we can't. Have to think… your… your career…"
don't you let me worry about that and just kiss me?" I
tell him as I take his mouth.
fantasized about this moment, wondered about it a lot in
the last couple of days. What would he feel like, what
would he taste like? What would it be like? Would it be
weird? Would it be okay? Would it freak me out? Could I
actually even do it?
I can do it. Of all the things I wondered I'd feel the
first time I kissed Daniel what I never expected is what's
happening right now.
mouth fits into mine like it was custom made. Perfect fit,
perfect match, perfectly comfortable, perfectly wonderful.
It feels so damned right and so damned good I know damned
well I'm going to be kissing this mouth for the rest of
as I can get him to stop fighting me long enough to let
it!" he cries as he pulls out of the kiss. Tears are
stinging in his eyes it's killing him so much to try and
fight what he wants. Dammit, I don't believe this, but
he's still trying to fling himself on that sacrificial
pyre in order to protect me.
wish he would quit it, already. I know what I'm doing.
I know what it means. I also know what I want.
else for it. I guess I'm just going to have to keep kissing
him 'til I kiss all the fight out of him.
you stop it!" Kiss him again.
throwing yourself on every moral land mine in my path.
Stop trying to save me from myself." Diving back down into
lip lock heaven.
I do not!"
too. Cut it out." Kiss, kiss, kiss.
god, do… not…"
too." Kissing me back, he's starting to kiss me back.
it, that's the way, talk dirty to me. Makes me all hot
when you make with the smut. Tell me more…" His mouth is
boiling, chest heaving, he's moaning and twitching and
rubbing up against me and driving me so crazy I can hardly
you want more? How about this, Danny, how does this
asshole…Oh! Oh! Oh God, oh GOD! Jack! JACK!"
is hot, thick, slick and throbbing in my hand. I barely
have time to feel it, stroke it, when his legs give way
and he pulls me over. We tumble to the ground, still locked
together and the second we hit he's on me. Frantically
kissing me, clawing at my clothes, heaving, groaning and
shuddering as he thrusts wildly against me like a crazy
I've finally brought him around to my way of thinking.
Time to go a little mental myself.
my pants are down around my ankles but I don't much care
'cause right now I'm in heaven. Daniel is on top of me
sobbing my name as he rams into me like a humping express
train. I'm so close to coming, just from what he feels
like sliding over me. Again and again and again. He's so
hard and so hot and every time he hits me I feel a jolt
splitting me from one end to the other. It can't get any
better and then he screams, grabs me and jerks me hard
and I'm going off like it's the fourth of July.
he's howling he's doing a 21-gun salute.
on top of me and I try to hold on to him as best I can,
but it's not easy, 'cause I'm still seeing stars for several
minutes after the main event. He shakes for a long time.
I don't know if it's because he's crying or because he's
trying not to, but he's not making a sound and I'm hoping
it's because he's too happy to breathe.
he says finally, in a mournful voice. "What have we
Danny. Don't spoil it.
I don't know about you but I've just had the best sex of
my life with the man I love." This day has been all about
truth. I see no reason to change the theme now. "And I'm
really hoping we're both on the same page, here."
back to look at me. Not crying. Not yet. But so damned
close it's not going to take much to push him over the
know how he feels.
sorry," he quavers. "I've ruined your life."
love me?" I demand as I pull him closer.
confused. "What - what does that matter now?"
answer the question!"
he says lowly, looking away as if he's just confessed to
said to you, screw everything, let's just get up, walk
over to that gate, go through it and take off to wherever
we damned well want to, would you do it? Would you come
are definitely pooling. Any second we will achieve overflow.
you want to go."
hesitation, no regrets, no doubts?"
we have lift-off. A tear the size of Texas plummets down
his cheek. I reach out my hand to capture it on my finger
and then touch it to my lips.
I just want to be where you are."
all that matters, Danny. All the rest of it was just something
we both did before we both figured out what was really
important. You. Me. Us. This. This is what I want more than
anything. This and - and you.
too." He says in a voice so small I can hardly hear it.
"It's all I want. It's all I've ever wanted. For a long
and lays his head back down on my chest. I close my eyes
and drink in the smell of his hair as it tickles my nose.
I feel so damned happy I could split something.
loves me. He loves me, and he wants to be with me. Anything
bad which might happen back home as a result of what we've
just done, I don't give a damn. Because I know what is
really important to me is secure.
about the team? What about your career? The Air Force?
What about all of that? What are we going to do?"
this 'being on the same wavelength' thing is feeling natural
don't know, what do you want to do? Do you want to chuck
it right here and now, or do you want to go back? What
do you think?"
quiet for a long time. He's actually thinking about it,
considering walking out on the SGC as a viable option.
That makes me pretty happy. Damned happy, as a matter of
fact. Tells me just about everything I need to know.
we go back?"
be 'us' you mean.
not impossible. Probably not smart. We'd have to be careful.
And we'd have to find out if we can still get the job done
without placing Sam or Teal'c or anyone else at risk."
if we can't?"
we're gone. You and me. Together."
- selfish somehow," Daniel sighs.
I laugh. "Blowing off saving the world for blowing each
other? How is that selfish? You're saying we haven't already
done enough for the world already? That we don't deserve
to find a little happiness before one or both of us gets
ourselves blown to bits?"
I am." I can hear the frown in his voice as he wrestles
then, guess again," I reply stubbornly. "I've given
my life to serving my country. And gotten precious little
back in return. The 'warm glow' of a job well done is pretty
cold comfort when you're alone. What's the point of getting
clapped on the back for saving the world when there's no
one to share it with? Or no one waiting for you when you
get home from a hard day at the office?"
not moving, not saying a word. That means he's listening.
That's good, because I've never said anything more important
in my life. Or tried to tell him anything I'm more dead
tired of it, Danny. Tired of being alone. Worn out from
fighting and killing and only having myself helping me try
and hold what's left of me all together. I'll serve if
they'll let me. I'll do what I can for them if you still
want to try, but if they ask me to give you up in order
to keep on doing it the answer is no. I can't. I won't.
And I'm not sorry about it, either."
I said it. Meant every word of it too.
what do you want to do?" he asks after he's given himself
a little time to take in what I've just said.
I asked you first."
did," he laughs as he moves up on me and plants a big,
long, wet one on me. "I'm not sure. I think I need to do
a little more research. In order to be able to clearly
understand my options."
is good," I gasp just before he plunges his tongue into
my mouth. "I like the way you think. What are you coming
know yet. But I'm expecting things will firm up soon."
I'll take that bet.
reaming my mouth out like he's looking for buried treasure.
With his tongue. Family jewels are a little lower. Oh yeah,
right… right there…"
in any hurry for me to make up my mind?" I didn't know
Daniel could make his voice sound so dirty.
Little dickens, he's full of surprises. I can't wait to
find out what else he can do with that mouth.
Me? No, not me - aw… sonofabitch, that feels good! Take
all the time you want…"
all the time you want. All the time in the world. Take
the rest of my life. Take whatever you want, just make
sure you take me with you.
and by the way," Daniel says between kisses, "I do
- Ow! Geez, easy with the equipment! Standard issue is
one per customer. Got to make this one last a long time."
going to argue with a man who's got his hand around your
dick?" That is one filthy, filthy smile. More surprises.
thinking it over. Move your hand up and down while you're
waiting, will ya? It'll give you something to do. Faster.
Oh God, you keep getting this good at following directions
I'm definitely keeping you."
so," Daniel's eyes are shining as he leans toward me.
"I plan on letting you."
melts into mine and I'm in heaven again. Flat on my back
in a forest billions of miles from home being kissed within
an inch of my life while I'm being jerked off by the man
of my dreams. Now I ask you, does it get any better than
on letting me keep you? I should be so lucky you'll plan
on keeping me. I sure hope you do 'cause there's
no one anywhere like you and now I've finally figured this
out I'm not letting anything or anyone come between us.
Ever. We go back, we take off, it's all the same to me.
As long as you're with me.
much of a bargain, Danny, but for what little I'm worth,
here I am. Come what may, no matter what happens, you come
first and you get the best I can be. I know it's not much,
but it's all I have and it's all for you.
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