A/n Remember the press release about the shut down for the Nevada observatory, where they said it was not aliens who caused the shut down? In my world it was Merlin.
"I can't believe you brought the dog." Sam scolds him. She's sorting the damaged equipment on her lab table. Jack grins internally. Just like old times. Him bugging Carter in her lab.
Jack looks wounded. "He missed you." Indeed Merlin has stuck to her since he and Jack got out of the car. Merlin looks up happily at Sam. He barks once and noses her arm for a petting.
"You got me in trouble," Sam hisses at them. "Do you know what dog hair does to some of this equipment?" Not to mention the fact that his tail wagging hit a few of the instruments in her lab. Some were knocked over, one ended up on the floor. It's going to take weeks to get back up and running. Even the non broken things have to be cleaned and retested.
"You could have at least asked for permission, General." The commander of the facility steps into the lab. Merlin holds out his paw for a shake. The CO chuckles and shakes the dog's paw. Jack smirks at his wife.
Sam glares at him. Jack hurries on defending his dog "He's usually very well behaved. I had no idea he'd get so excited to see Carter."
"No, that's Jester." Sam admits. Even after years of being the Siler dog, Jester still adores Sam.
Her temporary CO looks confused. "A few years ago, General O'Neill found a dog with puppies and adopted them. Merlin is the only pup he kept." Sam leans down and strokes Merlin's head. "The other three, Jester, Mab, and Aria were adopted by friends of ours." Sam explains. Merlin's tail thumps on the ground as Sam pets him.
"Jester bonded to Col Carter here and gets all excited when he sees her." He winces as he remembers one incident where Jester knocked over the telescope.
"Runs in the family, I see." The CO drawls. "And if I knew you were bringing a dog we could have made arrangements." He studies the two legendary Air Force officers. "Our day care would have been happy to have Merlin visit."
Jack recognizes a rebuke when he hears it. Even if it's a lesser ranking officer. He nods. "I'll take Merlin down to the day care," He stands. Merlin sits on Sam's foot.
"C'mon, pup," Jack says. Merlin leans on Sam. "Oh, no way." He hooks the leash onto the dog's collar and tugs. Merlin digs in.
Sam and her temporary CO are treated to the entertaining site of a three star general dragging his black and white dog out of the office. Merlin whines and cries trying to stay with Sam.
Sam takes pity on her husband. She rubs Merlin's ears. "I'll see you soon, buddy," Sam hunkers down and he licks her face. "Go with Jack."
O'Neill glares back at her when Merlin pops to his feet and trots along at Jack's side. Sam smiles at him. Merlin looks back and barks at her.
"Never a dull moment, Colonel?" The brigidier general smiles.
Sam chuckles, "Why would we want dull?" She knows the General has two kids and two dogs himself.
"Ain't that the truth." He agrees.
The trip to the day care is smoother and gives O'Neill a chance to soothe his dignity. He looks down at his dog. "I'm telling your mother about this, you know."
Merlin stares at the elevator doors. He hustles out of the car as soon as the doors open. His leash gets yanked out of Jack's hand. "Hey!" Jack winces as he jogs after the dog. Snagging the leash he nominally gains control of Merlin. "You could wait for me, you know," he grumbles. Jack's not really worried about Merlin. He enrolled him in therapy training after his littermates got adopted, but Merlin refused to leave Jack. He and Merlin visit hospitals, senior centers, long term care wards, and the occasional school. Merlin can handle anything. It's everyone else he's worried about.
"It could be worse, I suppose. It could be aliens," he mumbles.
The scientists who pass him give him an odd look as he follows Merlin to the day care center.