Coming Out

First Published:October 16th, 2003
Rating: PG13
Pairing: Benton Fraser/Ray Kowalski
Word Count: 37kb

Summary: They guys decide to 'come out' to their friends and the reactions are.... varied.

"I can't let you go Jack. This facility needs you more today than it ever did. The threat from the..."

"General, with all due respect, I think Daniel and I have done our fair share. There are plenty of other qualified personnel out there to take over from us."

Hammond stared at the pile of paperwork on his desk and sighed.

"Arguably there are any number of colonels who could do your job Jack, but Dr Jackson's unique skills are irreplaceable. Without his continued support of this project, the security of this planet is at serious risk."

 

Jack got up and began to pace the tiny office. He'd been through this with Daniel several times already but the archaeologist would not budge. The moment they had finally admitted how they felt about each other, Daniel had insisted on resigning before taking things any further, knowing that there were certain rules Jack just couldn't break.

Jack argued that if anyone should be leaving, it was he. He could ask for early retirement, go up to the cabin, spend his days fishing and waiting for Daniel to return from his missions, hoping that his replacement would be as good at keeping 'absent-minded' archaeologist alive as he had been. But Daniel had been adamant. If Jack went, he went. This morning, two neatly typed letters had appeared in General Hammond's in tray.

"He won't stay on without me General. I'm sorry." Jack's voice was filled with genuine regret. He knew how much the Stargate Project meant to Daniel, and how much his friend would be missed, but he also knew how much 'Jack O'Neill' meant to him. There had been no contest. Hammond watched the colonel begin pacing again. He had come to respect this man more than he would have thought possible over the years and he would not lose him without a fight.

"So you're saying that in order to retain his services, I am forced to overlook your 'relationship' with Dr Jackson and ignore Air Force policy and regulations?"

Jack's head whipped round in shock. He most certainly was NOT suggesting any such thing. That would be blackmail and although the thought had fleetingly crossed his mind, that wasn't his style, especially with a commander he respected and liked as much as Hammond. But the General didn't look in the slightest bit angry, in fact he was smiling! Jack immediately caught on but the small smile he offered his CO didn't quite reach his eyes.

"I appreciate what your trying to do George, but it's not just you. I'm tired of hiding the way I feel. I'm not ashamed of loving him."

"And neither you should be. Look son, life is short but the threat to Earth is real. If I have to break a few rules to keep my flagship team together, then so be it. I'm asking you to compromise too Jack. Can you at least discuss it with Dr Jackson?"

Jack shoved his hands into his pockets and leant against the door.

"Sure, but even if he agrees, there could be problems with the rest of the team. He's gonna insist we tell them. What if they want to transfer off the team?"

"I doubt that will happen Jack, but I agree they have to be informed. Dr Fraiser will also need to know. If you like, I could do that."

"Fraiser? Why?"

Hammond went a little pink around the gills but managed to grin sheepishly at his 2IC never the less.

"Think about it Jack – she conducts your physicals."

"Ah – right. I...um...I see what you mean now sir."

Jack felt himself blush from head to foot and decided it was time to make a hasty exit. He and Daniel hadn't taken their relationship to a physical level yet and it had not occurred to Jack that doing so would leave certain...evidence. Excusing himself, he headed straight for Daniel's office.

~~<<*>>~~

"How did it go?"

Jack carefully closed the door behind him and slumped into the guest chair. He took a deep breath and shrugged his shoulders. "George is willing to overlook our relationship if we agree to stay on. Seems he feels that keeping SG1 together is more important to him than his career. What a guy!"

Daniel got up and came around the desk, kneeling on the floor beside Jack, he took his hand and squeezed it hard. "What do you want to do Jack?"

Jack bit his lower lip, an inner battle being played out in his eyes for any that knew him well enough to see it. Then came the sudden 'whoosh' of expelled breath he hadn't been aware he was holding.

"I want to have my cake and eat it! This team, this whole project gives me a reason to get up every morning Danny, but you give me a reason to get into bed in the first place. I love my team, but I love you more. Can I have it all? Am I asking too much?"

Daniel squeezed Jack's hand reassuringly again before getting to his feet and heading for the office door. "You're only asking for what you deserve Jack. Now, we have to go tell the others. Do you want Teal'c or Sam?"

Jack got up and followed his friend out of the office. "Toss ya for it," he grinned routing about in his pocket for a coin and hoping that he would win because he sure as hell didn't want to be the one facing Cater across the barrel of her P-90.

~~<<*>>~~

"Carter, can I have a word?" Sam switched of the welding torch she had been using and eyed her CO through the smoky safety visor. He looked nervous as hell. It wasn't appraisal time again was it?

"Er sure, I was about to go up to the commissary and get some fresh coffee. Do you want to come with?"

Jack shook his head and taking Carter by the elbow, led her towards the lift. "Actually Carter, this conversation would be best done off base."

A few minutes later, Sam found herself changed into civvies and waiting for Jack to emerge from the male locker room. She was really worried by now. Their relationship of late was blooming; Jack was actually making a concerted effort to spend more time with her off duty. She enjoyed their twice monthly trip to the track to watch the dirt bikes, enjoyed the occasional pizza, beer and a video shared with Teal'c, who's constant questions about the strangeness of Tauri culture always had them both in fits of giggles. She had even enjoyed the day she had been persuaded to attend a hockey match with him, even though she wasn't really a fan of the sport. Watching Jack cut loose and enjoy himself had been reward enough. That side of Jack, she didn't get to see nearly enough of.

Yes she had enjoyed spending time with Jack, and if she were honest, had wondered if his feelings for her were still platonic. She found her CO extremely attractive, and if they were not working together, not on the same team, she might have been tempted to try to take the relationship further. She shook herself mentally. There was no point in letting her libido go down that road. Jack might be the most desirable man on the earth, but he was out of bounds as far as her military career went. She refused to think about it. Jack's emergence from the locker room dressed in a black leather Jacket and black jeans gave her libido a vindictive prod.

"Ready?" he asked unnecessarily. She nodded and fell into step beside him for the final elevator ride to the surface.

Less that an hour later, they were sitting in a secluded booth in O'Malley's, nursing a frosted glass of Bud each, and talking about everything under the sun. Everything, that was, except about what was eating Jack. As Sam swallowed the last dregs of her beer, she caught the look of uncertainty in her CO's eyes and that feeling of panic began to rise again. He had something big to tell her. Maybe he had been thinking about taking their relationship further too. Maybe he had decided that now was the time to ask, or perhaps he already felt they were too close and was looking for some space? She licked her lips and decided to cut straight to the chase.

"Colonel – Jack - is there something bothering you?"

Jack placed his glass very carefully down on the table, his eyes tracking a drop of condensation trickling down the side as if it were the most important thing in the world. Finally he sighed and raised his eyes to meet hers.

"Yeah. I have something to tell you. Its about Daniel and me." He watched her face intently, perhaps looking for any sign that she might already be aware of the problem. She remained totally impassive.

So this was about Daniel? Things were not that great between the colonel and Daniel at the moment. Sam had tried to figure out when the easy, snarky relationship the two friends had shared had become one endless round of verbally caustic fights. She thought perhaps the Tollan/Asgard sting operation was the beginning but it was difficult to pin down. That whole episode had certainly left her with more questions than it had answered. Questions like; how she had managed to completely misread this man.

She had prided herself on her tactical instincts, yet she had wholeheartedly bought his cover story, crying herself to seep at night over the loss of a good friend to the stresses of the job. She had been embarrassed more than anything when Jack had revealed his part in the sting operation. And a little hurt too, if she was honest, but Daniel; Daniel had seemed devastated. Jack was speaking again.

"We've been having a few problems lately, not quite seeing eye to eye..." Sam snorted at this understatement, and Jack smiled, bobbing his head in agreement. Yeah, it was the understatement of the year. He took another quick sip of beer and watched her over the rim of the glass.

"Well we sorted it all out."

"I'm glad sir, it was getting harder to stay impartial."

Jack nodded and put his glass down again. There was obviously more he had to say. He didn't bring her way up here to tell her that he and Daniel were best buds again. She shrugged out of her jacket and waited patiently while Jack gazed into the glass as thought it held all the answers to all the mysteries of the Universe.

Suddenly, his eyes snapped up to meet hers and she knew he was about to hit her with something profound. "You know I care about you, right Sam?"

Sam's lips parted a little in shock. Despite having imagined this very scenario, she had never honestly thought Jack would ever willingly talk about the 'thing' between them, whatever it was. She nodded, refusing to drop her gaze under such blazing honesty.

"I admire you more than just about anyone I know Sam. You're beautiful, *way* more intelligent than me, you can kick Goa'uld ass with the best of them and you care about the team."

She smiled a little woodenly, hoping that he wasn't about to declare his undying love, because she couldn't bear to hurt this man, and she might have to do just that. She could never lie to him. She loved him too much to do that, but not enough to pretend she was IN love with him.

"The team is what matters. I don't want to do anything to damage my team Sam."

Then the panic was back. What was he saying? That he was going to have her transferred because he couldn't bear to work beside her? Damn but she would NOT accept that. He must have seen the confusion in here eyes because he quickly reached out and covered her hands with his.

"I tried to hand in my resignation but George wouldn't accept it. Or Daniels."

"Dan…?" a frown creased Sam's brow as she tried to jump back onto the conversational train. Somewhere along the line, she had gotten off track! What did any of this have to do with...? Oh! Finally she understood. This wasn't about her at all.

"You and Daniel are…?" She couldn't finish the sentence. She didn't need to. It was all there in his eyes; the sadness, the regret, the pain, and oh yeah, the love. He was in love with Daniel.

"When I finally got my head outta my ass long enough to admit to my feelings, I panicked and started pushing him away. This isn't exactly the way I saw my life going."

Sam lent back against the cold leatherette bench seat, ignoring his attempt at levity, trying unconsciously to put some distance between them. She couldn't believe she was hearing this. She didn't want to be hearing it! But relentlessly, he continued on.

"I really hurt him in an attempt to deny my feelings. I won't do that to him anymore, I'm sorry if you feel you can't work with us because of this, but I wont hide the way I feel about him any longer. Sam…? Say something."

Sam had been staring at a point just over his shoulder. She took a deep breath, reached for he jacket then got to her feet.

"You want my blessing, is that it Jack?" She rammed her hands into the sleeves of her Jacket angrily. "Well fuck you!"

It was more embarrassment and damaged pride that fuelled her words than shock. If she were honest, the signs had been right there in front of her for years. But like Jack, she just hadn't realised what she was seeing. Right now however, her ego ruled her mouth. The wounded look on his face as she left did a lot to cool her rage, and by the time she reached the parking lot, the tears streaking down her cheeks were tears of regret.

~~<<*>>~~

Jack watched Sam weave her way out of the bar and swore under his breath. He had NOT handled that well. Getting to his feet, he dropped a handful of notes onto the table to pay for their beer, too many notes actually but he didn't care.

The air outside was cold and burned his lungs as he made his way towards his truck. He had been tempted to stay and get really drunk, but then he would have had to leave his truck in the lot overnight, and get Daniel to come pick him up. A drunk and morose colonel was probably not what Daniel needed tonight, so he opted for going home and rewriting his resignation instead. If Carter couldn't accept Daniel as his partner, then he was leaving the team. No question.

~~<<*>>~~

She drove for over an hour, thoughts tumbling through her mind, fingers white on the steering wheel. Finally, she pulled off the road and let her head drop onto her hands. The embarrassment of earlier had gone, replaced with a kind of relief. She no longer had to worry about Jack's feelings for her, or for having to turn him down. Actually her biggest worry now was making sure she watched Jack's six very carefully or Daniel would kill her. She laughed in the silence of her car at the ridiculous thought.

How had it happened? How had two healthy heterosexual men found love in each other's arms? Sam was an Air Force brat, brought up with a military outlook on life. She wasn't homophobic, but neither had she had much contact with the gay community. She found the whole thing uncomfortable. But at the same time, she *was* truly happy for them, really she was.

If they could only find what they needed with each other, then good luck to them. Now that she knew, she would do her level best to help them through whatever came next. Jack said he had tried to resign but Hammond had refused both his and Daniel's request. Strictly speaking, he couldn't do that. Especially with Daniel being a civilian, so she assumed that the general had done nothing more than buy himself a little time while the two men really thought about what they wanted to do.

Obviously, Jack and Daniel needed the approval of the people closest to them, or at the very least, their acceptance. Jack had said it himself in the bar; he would do nothing to damage the team. And she had reacted very, very badly. Now shame washed over her as she sat in the quiet car. He had definitely not deserved that. Her ego had been bruised, but she had already come to realise that a relationship with Jack was not what she wanted.

Sam ran her fingers though her hair, locking them behind her head. The urge to just bang her head against the steering wheel a few times was almost too strong to resist.

Stupid, stupid, stupid!

She started the engine and turned the car round.

~~<<*>>~~

Jack sighed in frustration and crumpled the piece of paper he was writing on into a ball. He tossed it in the general direction of the trashcan where several other similar balls of paper were strewn across the floor. Basketball was not Jack's sport of choice. He pulled another sheet of notepaper from the desk drawer and took a cleansing breath. How hard could it be to write a letter of resignation? It wouldn't be the first time he had done this but hopefully it would be the last time.

He had let Daniel compose the last one, unable to face the task himself. He had read the words over before signing, but beyond the fact that it was a very well written piece of prose, he could remember none of it. He hesitated, pen poised over the clean sheet of paper. This time, Hammond would have to accept it.

Come on Jack, it doesn't have to be top of the best seller list

He tried again.

It is with deep regret that must formally tender my letter of resignation dated 18th October 2000. My reasons for resigning are personal in nature and ...

He sighed and scrunched up this piece of paper too. He didn't want to commit his relationship with Daniel to paper, to reduce it to a few lines of ink. What he felt could not be summarised, bullet pointed, or documented. It couldn't be filed away in some dusty old archive box under, 'O'Neill, Conduct Unbecoming.'

The doorbell roused him from his dark thoughts. Expecting to find Daniel lurking on his porch, seeing Carter standing there instead came as a shock. She smiled a little hesitantly and glanced past him towards the living room.

"Can I come in?"

He took an automatic step backwards. Part of him didn't want to face her again but part of him wanted another chance to try and explain. Carter stepped down into the living room and toed the balls of paper curiously. It didn't take a genius to guess what Jack had spent the last hour trying and (by the evidence littering the floor) failing to do.

She turned as he came to stand behind her, taking in the neutrality of his eyes and his wary stance. He looked tired, on edge, but ready to do battle if necessary. Feeling the guilt rise again, she took a deep breath.

"I was out of line Jack. I'm sorry."

It wasn't what he'd been expecting. He took a hesitant step towards her; hope finally re-igniting the sparkle in his eyes.

"Carter?"

"I'm sorry I shouted at you Jack. I want you to know that I'm happy for you both. I really am."

Her eyes were unusually bright, her voice wavered slightly and Jack felt the tears begin to well in his own eyes as he pulled her in to a bear hug. "Thank you Sam. God thank you!"

~~<<*>>~~

Daniel had spent many hours in this room. Teal'c had never managed to convince any of the other members of his team that Kel-noreem could be beneficial to them, but Daniel had been willing to give it a shot. And Teal'c had not been wrong. If nothing else, it allowed Daniel to relax for a few hours and think of nothing at all.

Tonight though, he couldn't relax. Teal'c seemed to sense his unease and after a few minutes, he opened his eyes and watched the Tauri's struggle to find peace. He had come to be quite an expert over the years at reading DanielJackson's moods. He waited patiently. Daniel rubbed a hand over his tired eyes and replaced his glasses on the bridge of his nose. Letting his eyes flutter open, he realised that Teal'c was watching him.

"Damn, I'm disturbing you aren't I?"

The big Jaffa inclined his head but said nothing to confirm or deny it. Daniel stretched out his legs and tried to concentrate on the candle flickering before him, but it was not good. He hadn't come here to meditate, and the longer he put it off, the harder it was going to get. He took a deep breath.

"Teal'c may I ask you something?"

"You may ask me anything DanielJackson. If I have the answer, I will give it to you."

Daniel smiled and crossed his legs, sitting Indian style with his hands draped loosely over his knees. As an anthropologist, Daniel had done some research into the society on Chulak and knew enough not to make any glaring faux Pas, but he was still a little unclear on the 'warrior code' that they lived by. There were no written records, for the same reasons that there had been a ban on writing on Abydos. Most of his information came from simple observation or by asking questions. He had no idea how his friend was going to react to his *this* question. He cleared his throat nervously, trying for the thousandth time to figure out how best to phrase this.

"Thank you Teal'c. I know you will. I was wondering if you could answer a question about relationships of a personal nature within the ranks of the Jaffa?"

"Ah - you refer to the Brotherhood of the Warrior. A close friendship forged in the heat of battle like the one I share with O'Neill and Master Bra-tac?"

"Not really, no." Daniel watched Teal'c's eyebrow disappear off the top of his head. This was infinitely more difficult than he had ever imagined. "I'm referring to um...relationships of a...well 'sexual' nature between warriors." Daniel squeezed his eyes shut as if expecting a blow to the face.

"Ah – Kel-Tovac, the Sharing of Physical Pleasure after a Victory. What of it?"

It was Daniel's turn to look surprised. The Jaffa had a WORD for this? He shifted uncomfortably on the hard floor, focusing on the candle rather than Teal'c's inquisitive face. "Right – yes. Kel-To-vac? Um, so can you tell me about it, at all, maybe?"

Teal'c inclined his head and began talking without the slightest hint of embarrassment. "Kel-Tovac is considered one of the highest honour a warrior can bestow upon a fellow warrior. In most cases, Kel-Tovac occurs between close friends, men that have fought many battles at each others side, but among the higher ranking officers, it can be offered as a mark of respect or as a formal acknowledgement of a treaty or agreement. The practice of Kel-Tovac is commonplace in our society."

"Have *you* ever...sorry, don't answer that, that was too personal!" Daniel's face reddened at his own audacity. He wasn't sure he even wanted to know the answer.

"Do not apologise DanielJackson. I understand that among the Tauri, such practices are frowned upon. Although I do not pretend to understand your culture fully, I am aware of the great risk you and O'Neill are taking by honouring each other in this manner. I offer my support and my continuing silence. From one warrior to another."

Daniel gulped and reached over to meet Teal'c's outstretched arm in a warriors' embrace. "That means a lot to me Teal'c. Thank you."

"I must warn you however, that as O'Neill's Brother Warrior and friend, I will be forced to disembowel you should you hurt him in any way."

Daniel's eyes grew wide, realising that the big Jaffa wasn't joking. He nodded solemnly. "You have my word Teal'c. I would die before I hurt him." Daniel felt powerful fingers squeeze his arm in affirmation, then he was released and got to his feet. He walked to the door wondering how Jack was faring in his own disclosure mission, but as his hand closed around the door handle, Teal'c's deep baritone halted him.

"DanielJackson."

"Yes?"

"Please inform O'Neill that the threat of disembowelment applies to him also."

Daniel couldn't keep the huge grin from splitting his face in two as he quietly slipped into the corridor, closing the door behind him.

~~<<*>>~~

General Hammond gathered up the pile of reports littering his desk and tossed them into a drawer. The day he finally reached the bottom of this pile was the day he would voluntarily retire. He smiled at the thought. Maybe that's what had kept him at the SGC all these years, unfinished paperwork.

Good excuse George but fine you know it's the thrill of the chase that keeps you sitting at this desk.

He locked the drawer and got painfully to his feet, checking his watch before heading to the infirmary. It was late, and the infirmary was devoid of patients for once. George knocked on the office door, knowing that Dr Fraiser would still be here. Sometimes he wondered if she ever left. Now that Cassandra was 16, there was less reason for her to hurry home he supposed, but still, the woman worked too damned hard. He shook himself and sighed.

So do we all.

His knock was answered by a tired female voice. "Take two aspirin and come back in the morning."

Smiling, he opened the door and peered round. Janet sat slumped at her desk, head pillowed on her hands, her normally immaculate hair, cascading all over the desk. Hearing the door open, she forced her weary head up, ready to tear a strip off whoever had disturbed her, only to bolt up even straighter when she saw who her visitor was. "At ease doctor." Hammond grinned, stepping into the tiny, cramped office but refusing the seat she pointed at. "I was just wondering if you were in a hurry to get home tonight. There's a little something I have to discus with you."

Janet tried to stuff her hair back into the clips that had worked lose and finally gave up, running her fingers thought the unruly mop until it settled about her shoulders. Hammond blinked several times but said nothing.

"Of course sir. My door is always open. What was it you needed?"

Hammond cleared his throat nervously and glanced over his shoulder at the security camera blinking above the door. "Can I buy you dinner?"

Janet's mouth dropped open. Those were five words she had never expected to hear from her CO. She followed his eyes to the camera and nodded, realising that whatever he wanted to discuss, it was not something he was happy talking about on the record. She got to her feet, stripping of the omnipresent white lab coat and replacing it with a blue jumper.

"Why Sure, if you're payin' suga'" she drawled in an exaggerated Texan accent. Hammond smiled and held the door open, following her into the corridor.

And hour later they were seated in an exclusive French Restaurant in the 'uptown' quarter of Colorado Springs. Janet was impressed. Most people had to book a table here at least two weeks in advance. Hammond ordered a bottle of wine and once the waiter had left, he raised his glass.

"To the finest team I ever had the privilege of commanding." He beamed. Janet clinked her glass against his, knowing exactly who he was referring to, and so adding a toast of her own.

"And that I had the privilege of patching up." They drank in silence for a moment until finally Janet couldn't stand it any longer.

"General, what's this all about?"

"Off duty doctor – its George, and can't I take my chief Medial Officer out for a meal to show how much I appreciate all the good work she does?"

Janet fiddled with her knife, wondering how honest she should be. After all, this man wasn't just her immediate superior; he was the base commander, the man at the top. She licked her lips and decided to go for honestly. Anything less just wasn't her style.

"I've been your CMO for nearly four years and this is the first dinner invitation I've received."

Hammond's eyebrows shot up but he recovered quickly and smiled at his CMO. "Ya got me." He grinned taking another sip of the expensive wine, his eyes sparkling merrily. Janet smiled back, thinking that in his youth, the general must have been a good-looking man. Then she immediately shelved that line of thinking as totally inappropriate. Hammond was talking again and she had to force herself to concentrate.

"I do have an ulterior motive for getting you off the base. You see I want to gauge your reaction to a 'situation' that has arisen that could potentially cause unfortunate..."

"George, enough with the BS - just tell me the problem."

Hammond sighed and placed the crystal goblet carefully on the tablecloth. He steepled his fingers and rested his chin on them.

"Doctor Fraiser..."

"Janet."

"Janet, thank you. I always wondered how a doctor could balance the Hippocratic oath with Air Force duty. It can't be easy."

She took a sip of her wine, watching her CO over the rim as he stared back at her. "You're right sir. I take my Oath to my country very seriously, but I am a doctor first and a soldier second. When I swore to 'do no harm' I promised to put that oath above all others."

"So if you believed that a direct order would cause a patient harm, you would ignore that order?" Janet bit her lip. They both knew that she had come very close to resigning on more than one occasion when pushed on that matter. The truth was, that she had finally come to trust and respect the general and the men and women he relied on for guidance. She shrugged her shoulders noncommittally and smiled.

"Not a direct order from you sir."

He leaned closer across the table.

"Now who's bullshitting? How about a policy dictate then? If you felt a policy was harming a patient, would you ignore it?"

Janet got the distinct impression that this was the million-dollar question. It was vague, but she could almost see where he was going with it. She decided it was time to see some cards lying on the table.

"Are we talking about the fraternisation regs here?"

Hammond fixed pale blue eyes, as sharp as diamonds onto her and all traces of humour left his face.

"I'm talking about 'don't ask, don't tell' here Janet. If you knew two of our people were perusing a relationship that fell under the title of 'conduct unbecoming to an officer', would you report it to your CO?"

Finally it all became clear. Janet Fraiser was no fool and she had eyes in her head. She was well aware of which two people the general referred. Had been aware for quite some time now. Oh she was sure nothing had happened between them, she would have found evidence of that. But she knew just how many hours each man has kept vigil at the other's side after another mission where they had been lucky to get out alive. Janet smiled at her CO, knowing what he was asking of her.

"Not much point if he already knows about it sir." She grinned. Hammond grinned back and raised his glass. Janet mirrored his actions.

"To SG1." He said softly. And they drained their glasses.

~~<<*>>~~

Jack parked and flicked off the headlights, making sure that he could see a light on before pushing open the lobby doors. Donald the doorman politely tapped his hat in greeting. "Evenin' colonel."

Jack tossed off a salute as he passed the young man heading towards the elevator. Over his shoulder he asked, "Dr Jackson is home I take it?"

Without having to check his security log, the young man offered Jack a thumbs up. "Came home about an hour ago sir. Should have the bed nice and warm by now."

Jack nearly ran into a wall. He whirled around but Donald had already turned to face the double doors. Jack felt his face flush red. Part of him wanted to march right over there and demand what the hell that comment was supposed to mean, another part of him wanted to run like hell in the opposite direction. He settled for glaring at the young man's back whilst stabbing the lift call buttons.

He was still a little unnerved by the comment when he arrived outside Daniel's door. They had agreed to meet up here after their respective missions, partly because it was midway between the base and the town, and partly, Jack suspected, because Daniel had a bed the size of a small continent.

He raised his hand to knock, but the door flew open and Daniel's hand shot out to grab him by the shirtfront and haul him across the threshold. He was shoved roughly up against the door by his bare-chested friend, and kissed within an inch of his life, until the need to breath forced him to disentangle himself from the octopus that was Daniel.

"Missed me huh?" he managed to say before Daniel's questing mouth found his again. That was really the only answer he needed, but he had planned on making love to Daniel for the first time in that big bed, not on the hall floor, so unless he wanted to add carpet burns to his list of ailments, he had to start them off in the right direction.

"Can I at least take my coat off?" he managed as Daniel peppered his jaw with tiny nibbling kisses, pressing one denim-clad thigh between Jack's legs.

"No." growled Daniel against the base of Jack's throat. Delightful though this was, Jack's knees were beginning to complain about the added stress of holding up 180 pounds of panting archaeologist so he twisted in Daniel's arms, grabbed a handful of muscular forearm and made for the bedroom with all haste, kicking off his shoes as he went. He absently noted that Daniel was already barefoot as well as bare-chested and wondered just how long he had been waiting for Jack to arrive. Judging by his more than warm welcome, it had been a while.

But halfway down the hall, Jack paused, pulling Daniel close. He gently ran his hair through the short spiky hair and smiled.

"How did it go with the big guy?"

Daniel grinned, slipping his hands under the black leather jacket and pushing it off Jack's shoulders. "He knew about us already. Seemed to approve too. Oh, and if we hurt each other in any way, he sees it as his duty as our friend to kill us both. And no, he wasn't joking."

Jack touched his forehead to Daniel's and draped his arms over his shoulders. He wasn't that surprised to learn that Teal'c had already worked it out. The big Jaffa often surprised them with the depth of his understanding. Jack watched as his friend's fingers made short work of his shirt buttons.

"How about Sam? Was she upset?" asked Daniel

Jack licked his lips, wondering if he should be honest about Sam's initial reaction. It would kill Daniel to think that he had even inadvertently caused his 'big sis' any pain. Finally he opted for a sanitised version.

"Yeah, a little, at first but she soon came round. She's happy for us now."

Daniel sighed in obvious relief. He pushed Jack's shirt over his shoulders and nuzzled the sensitive skin at the base of Jack's neck until the other man was quivering.

"I can hardly believe this Jack. Is it possible that we might actually be getting our hearts desire? Quick, pinch me to see if it's a dream."

Obligingly Jack slipped his hands up Daniel's chest and tweaked both his nipples, eliciting a sharply indrawn breath from Daniel. He hastily bent and kissed them better, causing Daniel to arch his back like a cat stretching in the late afternoon sunlight.

Jack slipped his hands behind Daniel, lifted him by the ass and began walking towards the bedroom again. Daniel had no option but to wrap his legs around Jack's waist and hold on tight to the broad shoulders.

"Where are we going Jack?" he whispered in his soon-to-be-lover's ear. Jack bounced off a few walls but made it to the bedroom relatively unscathed.

"Everywhere." He answered softly.

And it was a promise, because tonight Jack would take Daniel places he had never even dreamed before then in the morning, there would still be the stargate; the possibilities were endless.

 

 

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