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16 October 2011 @ 02:48 pm
Fic: 5 Times Jack Saw Sam in Everyday Life  
Title: Five Times Jack Saw Sam in Everyday Life
Author: Magickmoons
Fandom: SG-1
Genre/Pairing: Gen, Sam/Jack UST, Sam/Pete
Rating: T
Summary: Off-base, onworld, in civvies
Notes: Takes place at various points up through Season 8.  References to specific events in Seasons 7/8
Disclaimer: Not mine, not even in an alternate universe :(
1.  Liftoff
He had never really thought about what Captain Carter did in her spare time, mostly because ‘spare time’ was an almost laughable concept for his team.  However, she apparently had it and was filling it.  He was taking advantage of the crisp fall day with a walk in the local park when he saw a knot of pre-teens gathered in a large open field.  And there in the middle of them was Carter.  He could hear her voice in the cool air as she handed a small remote to a girl standing next to her. 
“Okay, Megan.  This is your project.  You do the honors.”
The excited girl did her best to project a grown-up look as she solemnly pushed a button on the remote.  The kids all squealed in excitement as a small rocket zoomed up from the ground at the center of the circle.  Jack looked at the kids, their faces elated, eyes wide with wonder, remembering his first time.  Then he looked at Carter, her eyes tracing the path of the rocket, the wonder and excitement written on her face nearly as great as the kids gathered around her. 
As the rocket finished its ascent and started a graceful arc to return to the ground, the kids around her started clamoring.  Jack wanted to go over and say something to her, but he wasn’t sure what: congratulate her on being so productive, share the excitement of exposing these kids to the wonders of flight?  But the kids were shouting questions at her and she was doing her best to answer, so he shook his head and continued on his walk.  She had to put up with him at the SGC; she certainly didn’t need him intruding on her down-time. 
Sam listened to a dozen questions shouted at once and tried her best to answer in some coherent manner, but she couldn’t shake the feeling that she was being watched.  She glanced around to try to identify the source, but most everyone in the immediate vicinity had noticed their little show.  She shrugged it off, returning her focus to the kids and the science and the freedom of flight.

2.  Best Seats in the House
Jack picked his way carefully along the edge of the field, trying to block out the sights and sounds of the families having fun.  He mentally kicked himself.  Why had he thought it was a good idea to come up here today?  Because he thought it would help.  Charlie had always loved going to Fourth of July celebrations.  Jack hadn’t been able to bring himself to attend one since his death.  But for some reason today, he decided to try it.  He had thought maybe he could feel some connection again, feel less alone.  But all the smiling, happy families just made him feel more isolated than ever.
He was about to turn around and head back home when he picked up voices calling “Colonel O’Neill!” and a younger, more strident voice yelling, “Hey, Jack!”  Scanning the crowd, he quickly located Major Carter, Janet Fraiser, and Cassandra.  Forcing a smile onto his face, he threaded his way through picnicking groups as he made his way over to their location.  A couple of blankets, a picnic basket and cooler, and three very happy females greeted him, the two women with welcoming smiles but Cassie practically jumped into his arms.
“Jack, did you come to watch the fireworks with us?” she asked as she released him.
Janet cautioned, “Cassie, I’m sure he has other plans.”
He hemmed and hawed.  “Actually, I was just walking around.  I was thinking about heading back home.”  Out of the corner of his eye, he noticed Carter giving him a pensive look. 
“Oh, stay, Jack, please!  We’ve got food and drinks and we’re going to have the best view in the park.  Sam did all the calculations.”  Cassie was looking pleadingly up at him and he knew he was a goner.
Carter cleared her throat, embarrassed.  “I didn’t really...  I mean, well...”
The smile coming a little more naturally now, Jack told Cassie, “I’d love to stay and watch the show with you guys.”  And then in a low voice, he asked Carter, “You really did do the calculations, didn’t you?”
Her face flushed and she smiled sheepishly.  “Yes, Sir.  I did.”
He rubbed his hands together, grinning.  “Excellent.  Now, what did you say about food, young lady?”
After darkness fell, they stretched out on the blankets, watching the colors bursting in the sky above them.  He was sandwiched between Carter and Cassie, who was oohing and aahing at each new design. Yet more proof to never doubt Carter’s math, Jack thought.  It felt like they were in the middle of a kaleidoscope.  He glanced over to his side to find her watching him. 
She held his gaze for a minute, smiling warmly.  “Happy Fourth of July, Sir.”
“You too,” he said.  “And Carter?”
She had started to watch the sky again but turned her head back toward him.  “Sir?”
“These really are the best seats in the house.”
3.  Options
Jack turned down the aisle and stopped short.  There was Carter with that look on her face that meant she was deep in thought puzzling out an intricate problem.  He walked down and stood next to her looking at the products.
She glanced up as she realized someone was standing next to her.  “Oh, hello, Sir.”
He smiled at her.  “Hello, Major.  You look like you’re having some difficulty.”
She looked back at the shelf.  “Well, there are a lot of options.  I have to consider speed and function and optional attachments.”  She trailed off, bending down to look closer at one box. 
He rolled his eyes.  “You do realize that we’re supposed to have a team night in an hour, right?”
“Yes, Sir,” she absentmindedly responded, now comparing two different models.
“And you are hosting said team night?  At your house?  In an hour?”
“Mmm hmm.”
“Oh for crying out loud, Carter.”  He grabbed a box off the shelf and pressed it into her arms.  “It’s a blender.  They blend.  Just go buy it.”
She glanced down at the one he had picked out and then up into his exasperated face and stifled her objections.  “Yes, Sir.  But don’t blame me if the margaritas are all mushy tonight,” she threw back over her shoulder.
4.  Holidays
As Jack wandered through the festively decorated mall reviewing his mental list of presents to buy, he stopped short.  Standing on the other side of the food court was none other than Lt. Col. Samantha Carter.  Her face was flushed and slightly irritated as she tried to juggle several packages into a more comfortable carrying position.  Jack’s lips quirked in a smile as he started toward her.  But he was brought up short again as someone else caught the package that decided to desert its precarious position and topple off the pile.  He saw her face light up as Pete started placing the extraneous packages on a nearby table so that he could put his arms around her, lean in to kiss her.
Jack felt like ice water was spreading through his body.  He straightened, turned, and walked purposefully toward the exit.  He didn’t see the smile on Sam’s face fall as she spied his silver hair above the crowd heading away from her.  He didn’t see her nodding absently as Pete whispered playfully into her ear.  He didn’t see the smile that she quickly plastered across her face as she felt Pete pull back to look at her as she dragged her eyes away from his retreating form; the smile that Jack always knew meant that “I’m fine” was not the real answer.
Sam let Pete carry half of the packages as he slung an arm around her shoulders.  As they left the mall, she thought she caught a glimpse of Jack’s truck pulling out of the parking lot.  She forced herself to listen intently to Pete’s plans for the upcoming holiday and tried to ignore the aching emptiness inside.
5.  No Matter the Cost
Jack watched the gray sky as he picked his way along the gravel path.  The lack of sun seemed appropriate.  He didn’t do this for all SGC personnel; he couldn’t, they had lost too many.  But Dr. Fraiser was different.  It had been like losing a member of his own team.  She had brought them all back from the brink so many times.  It was hard to believe that it had been a year since she had been killed. 
As he neared her grave, he saw that he wasn’t the only here today.  Sitting on the cold ground, a colorful bouquet of flowers in front of her, was Carter, talking softly.  He could hear her voice carried on the wind, although the words were lost.  Not lost was the grief and loneliness and tears on her face. 
Jack chewed his lip for a minute.  He didn’t want to intrude, but he couldn’t just walk away when she was so upset.  He looked around to make sure they were alone before walking up to the grave.  He placed the small wreath of red, white, and blue flowers next to the headstone and took a seat next to her.
She looked up, trying to wipe away the tears with the sleeve of her sweater.  “You remembered, Sir.”
“Of course I remembered, Colonel.  I’d imagine Daniel and Teal’c will be by sometime today too.”
She sniffed a little, still trying to control the tears.  “I think Daniel’s already been here.” She pointed to the small set of scales resting on the headstone base.  They were silent for a while, thinking back to Sha’re’s funeral and the many, too many, others they had attended over the years. 
It was Sam who broke the silence first.  “God, I miss her,” she said as the tears started again. 
Jack leaned over and pulled her close, gently stroking her hair as she cried.  Even after her tears subsided, she continued to lean into him, hiding in comfort and safety he always offered.  The worst part of all of this was that it only served to remind Sam why she was particularly missing her best friend these days.  She no longer had anyone to talk to about the mess she was making of her life: why she had made up an excuse for Pete about being busy today rather than sharing her pain with him; why the General holding her now felt so right despite every rulebook, and the ring on her finger, telling them it was wrong. 
After a while, Jack shifted next to her.  He did not want to disturb the moment but the cold ground and wind were not being kind to him.  Sam pulled back.
“Carter, your lips are turning blue and my joints have just about frozen solid.  I think we’d better get someplace warm.”
She nodded and he helped her up.  Snowflakes began to float gently through the air as they headed slowly for the parking lot, side by side, close enough that their hands brushed every few steps.  They neared their cars and Sam slowed her pace, wanting to draw out this in-between time as long as possible, where they weren’t afraid of every touch and silence wasn’t awkward.
 It had been a long time since they’d been here. 
But the silence was broken by Jack’s phone ringing.  Rolling his eyes at the universe’s timing, he fished it out of his pocket just as Sam’s started to ring.  As she answered her phone, she nodded to Jack, already talking as he unlocked his truck.  “I’ll meet you there, Sir.” 
He paused a moment to look back at her, wanting to say something more, but the spell was broken.  She was Lt. Col. Carter and he was Brig. Gen. O’Neill and they were going to save the world.  Again.  No matter the cost.

I'm at: home
I feel: sickflu-y
I'm enjoying: sg1
Ami Ven: Alwaysami_ven on October 16th, 2011 10:36 pm (UTC)
These are all great, but I think I like #2 best.
magickmoonsmagickmoons on October 17th, 2011 02:35 am (UTC)
Thanks. #2 was a fun one to write.
Ardvari: Black wingsardvari on October 17th, 2011 01:35 am (UTC)
“Oh for crying out loud, Carter.” He grabbed a box off the shelf and pressed it into her arms. “It’s a blender. They blend. Just go buy it.”

Loved that line, heehee. My sister has blender- issues, too, so I've been in this same exact position.

I think overall #5 was my favorite. The mood was perfect.
magickmoonsmagickmoons on October 17th, 2011 02:38 am (UTC)
Thanks. I personally can take up to 15 minutes just to pick out what type of pen I want, much less something with actual options!

#5 was probably the hardest to write. I'm glad to hear that it comes across well.
rdamel: jack and samrdamel on October 17th, 2011 01:49 pm (UTC)
All good, thanks for sharing!
magickmoonsmagickmoons on October 17th, 2011 10:28 pm (UTC)
Thanks, I'm glad you liked 'em!
majorsamfan: Sam-Jack hugmajorsamfan on October 17th, 2011 09:53 pm (UTC)
Loved them all.

but she couldn’t shake the feeling that she was being watched. Sam has spidey sense where it comes to Jack. *nods*

And then in a low voice, he asked Carter, “You really did do the calculations, didn’t you?” Of course, she did! LOL

“I’ll meet you there, Sir.”

magickmoonsmagickmoons on October 18th, 2011 01:30 am (UTC)

I got a kick out of picturing Sam working all the numbers to find the optimal viewing location :) She never does anything halfway, does she?

“I’ll meet you there, Sir.”

Yeah, I played with this one lots of ways. I was hoping to leave it on an up note, but this is where insisted on going.