Chapter 7 - Once Bitten

Jack managed to claw around the shower cubical long enough to find that his towel was in fact where he'd left it and that had been over the top of the tap handles. Wrapping it around his waist without worrying about his dripping hair, Jack looked down at his bare chest. It wasn't really a pretty sight. Scars were splattered around like a child's painting, only not as colourful. His back was in just as bad a state, if not worse. As that small fact entered his mind, he began to feel more uncomfortable than before. There was nothing more he could do about it. Carter would probably be horrified - at least in the Infirmary bandages hid away the ugly sight. Don't think about it, Jack told himself, just don't think about it.

Sam watched her CO approach her, reprimanding herself for allowing her eyes to wander. Stop it! Sam nearly said aloud, that's pathetic, Sam. CO, say that to yourself, huh? Commanding Officer! Military! Regulations, Jesus. Get a grip.

"I'm sorry fo - " Sam held in the choking sound she almost made, as her Colonel got close enough for her to see the state of his body. It wasn't as though she hadn't known it would look.but she just never expected what she was looking at. "I'm sorry, Colonel, it's just.Janet told me that Kayla was looking for you and that you might be here. I - well I probably shouldn't have done this, but, it's women's locker room now. I didn't think you would know that since the times were changed just before you got back from.well they were changed not long ago."

Jack nodded, noticing that Carter's eyes continued to wander, then snap back to his face. He watched her looking away from him, uncomfortably directing her eyes to the left, then up, then to the floor. She was uneasy; Jack could feel it. "Well, I better get out of here then," he said, also looking away from the woman in front of him.

Tension seemed to grow and they both began to feel further discomfort. "If you don't mind - "

"No, I'll just go, Sir, and let Kayla know I found you," Sam interrupted, knowing that she was standing around without a reason.

"Yeah, ok," Jack agreed.

Sam nodded. "Ok," she repeated, beginning to leave when she stopped and turned back.

"Colonel," she said, waiting for him to look up at her, "I'm sorry."