Chapter Three

"… What did I do? " the original Daniel Jackson asked in the second following Samantha Carter dropping to the floor in a dead fain upon seeing him.

Teal'c, not being aware of such things as love or the absence of restoration of the dead in human culture, remained blank, seeing no reason for Samantha to react the way she did to Daniel's reappearance. Jack look embarrassed. " Uh, last time she saw you, Teal'c killed you. "

Daniel glared at Teal'c, although it made things rather convenient not to have a second of him running around. " What'd you do that for? " he demanded crossly. To be fair, this was a newly-liberated Teal'c and not the Teal'c Daniel had known for eight years, but to kill him? He always got the tough breaks.

" You were a Goa'uld spy, " Teal'c explained.

Daniel shrugged. " Good reason, " he conceded. He'd forgotten how formal Teal'c pronunciation and understanding of English had been – not that the inroads the three of them had made in eight years were considerable, but hearing him now made Daniel sigh at the thought of everything they'd have to teach them again.

Not that he could complain. It was a gift just to see him, Jack and Samantha again. Which brought him back to the unconscious woman on the floor. " OK, so Teal'c killed me and it's a shock to see me again. So why didn't you scream and faint? " he asked Jack. No point in asking Teal'c. the Jaffa rarely responded to anything, and he was used to seeing dead people being alive again. " The Samantha Carter I know was as tough as any of us. "

Jack looked even more embarrassed. The truth was, he didn't like having to admit to this Daniel that the other Daniel and Samantha had been lovers. Made him feel the teensiest bit jealous. Samantha was hot, and smart. He wouldn't have turned down a night in the sack with her. Actually would have welcomed it.

" The thing is… you – well, the other you – and her were lovers. Seemed pretty close, actually, " Jack explained.

There was a look in Daniel's eyes that Jack didn't understand. " You mean… we were together? " Daniel asked.

" I wouldn't call it that exactly, " Jack argued. " You guys only met, like, a week ago – well, in our time, anyway. But you were sleeping together. Being real indiscreet, too. Pissed everyone off. "

Daniel smiled. " Inter-military fraternisation, " he recalled. It was why he and Samantha had never gotten together while they were still in their time, although technically he wasn't military. But the best they could have hoped for was for one of them to be reassigned, and there had always been an unspoken decision that that was unacceptable. " Why did Hammond let us go at all? "

Jack looked guilty. " I insisted, " he confessed. " Don't ask me why, call it momentary insanity. And you got killed for your troubles, although I do admit it's rather convenient, having the four of us here and no doubles running around. "

" Explain to us how the rest of your team got killed, " Teal'c interjected.

" Oh, right, " Daniel remembered, and he explained that even though they'd agreed to stay in Ancient Egypt rather then disrupt the timeline trying to get the ship back, Jack and Teal'c ultimately couldn't stand to watch history unfold without doing anything. So figuring the revolt was going to happen anyway, they'd give it a helping hand – which had resulted in Samantha, Jack and Teal'c being killed, and, from what Daniel had just been told, Ra eventually leaving with the first Stargate.

So much for Sam's theory of causality, Daniel thought, looking at the unconscious woman on the floor. She began to stir. He dropped to the floor and gently pulled her towards him so her head was in his lap.

The movement woke her up completely, and she opened her eyes to be greeted by Daniel's face. Only this Daniel was slimmer and much more built up then her Daniel. She scrambled to her feet, took a long look at Daniel, then ran outside, crying.

Daniel jumped up and ran after her. His own and Samantha's emotions aside, it wasn't a good idea for a woman with short hair and army fatigues to be running around in broad daylight. He had tried to explain that to her a dozen times when she had been alive. When she had been alive. He was already starting to think of this Samantha as a continuation if his Samantha.

" Sam! " he called. " Sam, you gotta come back in the tent. If people see you like that they'll start asking questions and that's the last thing we need. Please. " The tone of his voice and look in his eyes was enough to convince Samantha that Daniel meant no harm. She allowed him to lead her back inside.

With what Jack considered to be a far too familiar hand on her back, given Daniel had met that Samantha all of five minutes ago, Daniel led Samantha to the furthermost corner of the tent where they began talking quietly.

Jack looked at Katep. " What's their deal? " he asked, gesturing to the whispering Samantha and Daniel, meaning the original Samantha and Daniel.

Katep sighed. The situation must come as quite a shock to Daniel. He had just started to get over the death of Samantha and now here she was again. " They were in love, " Katep said. He didn't know the English words to explain how deep their relationship had been, and how devastated he had been when she'd died. " He only just started acting… normally again. "

" Oh, man, you mean Danny-boy ended up with her in this lifetime, too? " Jack complained. " That guy gets all the breaks. " Jack went off to sulk the unfairness of the whole situation and contemplate becoming a history geek because that seemed far more effective in getting women then being a retired Air Force Colonel..

Meanwhile, in their corner of the tent, Samantha was struggling to come to terms with Daniel being real and in front of her – not to mention far more built-up then her Daniel. Not that she was being disloyal to her late lover, but you could hardly not notice this specimen of man in front of her…

" You died… Teal'c killed you… your eyes glowed like a Goa'uld… " Samantha rambled. Her Daniel was dead, but here was a man who looked so much like him ­washimafter a fashion – it was hard to take in.

Daniel was sympathetic. He remembered what it had been like for him, to watch the woman he loved being controlled by a Goa'uld. And he'd had years to get over the fact – this Samantha was struggling to deal with something unbelievable that had happened that day. She was remarkably in control of the situation, some to think.

He took her hands gently. " How do you think I feel? " he asked wryly. " Sam and I – well, it took me a while to get over her. And then you come in here. You look just like her. " Which he supposed was fair enough given that, after a fashion, she was Samantha – although she didn't seem as gung-ho and self-willed as his Samantha. Which wasn't necessarily a bad thing. Samantha had given him some pretty nasty migraines trying to explain to her why a woman in Ancient Egypt couldn't just prance around in men's clothing.

Samantha met Daniel's eyes, and she felt shock along with the usual current of electricity she felt looking into those beautiful blue eyes. They were so much like her Daniel's… " It'll take a while to get used to it, " she said softly.

" We have plenty of that, " Daniel said wryly. It was amazing how simple life got in Ancient Egypt – how much time he'd had to think about Samantha.

He leaned over to kiss her forehead softly. She pulled away for a fraction of a second, then ever-so-slightly she pressed her head into his lips. She was beginning to accept him. With a sigh of relief that the ice was broken, Daniel wrapped his arms around Samantha tightly and kissed her on the cheek. " It's going to be fine, " he said. He could already feel himself relaxing in her presence, and getting used to her 'return'.

There were more pressing issues to deal with then the awkwardness between Daniel and Samantha. Before Samantha, Jack and Teal'c had arrived Daniel had been leading a rebellion that was on the brink of action. That had a vast collection of staff weapons stashed away and a growing number of volunteers that trained when the Goa'uld guards weren't looking.

According to Samantha and Jack's description of the future, it was imperative Ra not be allowed to leave without the Stargate. Oh, yeah, and once they had won, Jack, Samantha and Teal'c would have to live out the rest of their lives in Ancient Egypt.

" What? " Jack protested. " But we have the second ship, which they don't know about. Once they're gone, we can take off too! "

" And run into our future selves? " Daniel pointed out. " We've already made a hash of history. We need to make it right again. "

" You already tried that, and look where it got you, " Jack muttered darkly, but left it at that. The truth was, he had no reason for going pack to present-day earth. And there were some really hot Egyptian women here who had things for rebellion leaders.

So the battle was won, Ra and his Goa'uld affiliates left Earth – without the Stargate, which Daniel and Jack had stolen away with the aid of the second ship and its cloaking device. They buried the Stargate, hopefully to be found when it was originally supposed to be found. " I really hope this works this time, " Daniel said. " I don't know what we'll do with a third lot of us running around. "

" Maybe I'd end up with the third Sam, " Jack mumbled under his death, although he really didn't care about winning Samantha anymore. He had met a woman he really cared for – it was funny how things worked out.

A year had passed since the successful second rebellion. Jack and happily married to an Egyptian girl (Daniel tried not to think about the historical repercussions of having Jack's offspring wandering around in ancient Egypt) and Teal'c was enjoying being free. As the only surviving member of the original SG-1 team, Daniel tried to teach Teal'c how to speak something resembling real English.

And he and Samantha became close.

They were friends these days, good friends. It was just so easy to be friends. It felt like the most natural relationship in the world. They were each other's best friend, much more so then Jack and Teal'c. The camaraderie they had had with their respective partners they shared with each other.

And more then just camaraderie – there was a growing chemistry between them they were both finding hard to ignore. More and more often Samantha found herself looking at Daniel's lips while he spoke, wondering what his kiss would feel like. And more and more often Daniel found himself watching Samantha covertly, the shapeless robes she wore doing little to make him forget how she looked under them.

More then once Jack had sided up to Daniel and asked, with a lascivious grin, " When are you and Carter hooking up? You guys are like dogs circling each other. "

" You know, you're an even bigger ass then the other Jack, " Daniel growled a reply. Then he sighed. " It's complicated. "

Jack snorted. " You're hot for her. She's hot for you. What's complicated? "

Daniel sighed. Trust Jack to not understand. They had both been in love with other people – each other's alternate-timeline double. You couldn't just witness your lover's death – killed for being a Goa'uld spy, killed in an ancient Egyptian rebellion, it was incidental – and then fall in love with their double from another timeline. Jack was madly in love with an Egyptian girl. No way would he understand.

One night they were cuddled up together in front of a fire with a group of rebels that gradually drifted away to go to bed until it was just the two of them. Their physical closeness was something of an amusement in the group – it definitely wasn't commonplace for a man and woman to spend hours in each others arms and not be together. But it felt right to them, so who were they to listen to what anyone else said?

Not to mention there were certain advantages to being thought of as ' Daniel Jackson's woman' – no man came onto her, or whatever the Ancient Egyptian equivalent was. He was quite the hero among the rebels. Chuckling softly at the thought, Samantha snuggled in closer to Daniel.

" What's so funny? " Daniel asked, catching her laughter.

Samantha looked sheepish, and explained. Daniel smirked. " Traitor to the feminist cause, " he teased good-naturedly. " The other Samantha would have run around in her army fatigues telling anyone within earshot that she and I were not together. " But the way he said it made her think that it wasn't nesasarily a good thing.

" She was… very independent, " Daniel said diplomatically. " I get the feeling from what you've said that in your future feminism hasn't made the inroads it has in my future. And Sam was definitely a front line feminist. She'd kick the ass of any man who treated her like she wasn't his equal. That was fine in the future, but here – she got a lot of unwanted attention, by acting like a man. It was kind of ironic seeing's she was the one who said we couldn't mess with the future, and there she was trying to bring emancipation the Ancient Egypt. It could be… hard to deal with sometimes. It wasn't that I didn't love her, just that I wished she would be more aware of the attention she was bringing to herself – and to us. "

" How did you and her get together, if you don't mind me asking? " Samantha inquired.

For a moment Daniel hesitated, thinking about that first night. But he and Samantha were honest with each other, and he wasn't about to stop being honest now.

" She could drive me so crazy sometimes. She preferred to wear her army fatigues, and a woman in this place wearing pants made her quite obvious. She didn't take orders from men very well when she thought she could do it better, and she certainly wasn't going to accept their judgement just because they were men. We had a couple of almighty rows about it. "

He took a deep breath. " One night we really went at it. She had spoken back to a local tribe leader, and he wanted her killed for it. It took all my and Jack's intervention to get him to back down. That night we just screamed at each other. I said she was endangering herself and the rest of us and she said I had no idea what it was like to be a woman in this place.

" We went from trading words to physically fighting, and being so close to her with that much emotion… " he trailed off, embarrassed. " Look, I ended up pinning her to the ground and ripping her clothes off, " he admitted. " It's not exactly something I'm proud of. But she wanted it. " He could still remember the passion of that night as they both sought control of each other while giving into the shared pleasure. She had fought him like a tiger while screaming his name as she climaxed… he found himself blushing. There was something unsettling about sharing those experiences with another Samantha. It was skating dangerously close to his feelings for her. He concentrated on the memories that weren't so provocative.

" We were together for about a year before the rebellion. It was an interesting experience, that was for sure, " he said wryly. " can I – can I let you in on a little secret? "

" Sure. "

" I'm glad you're not as strong-willed as she is. I loved her, and it was fine when we were in our own time, but here… it was just too much for me to deal with. I was always worried about who she might piss off, sometimes I'd be physically sick because of it. I know it sound horrible but – "

" I understand, given the circumstances, " Samantha said. " I don't think she would have been very happy here. "

" No, I don't think she was, " Daniel agreed. " But she loved me, I know that. And I was happy here – am happy here. "

There was a comfortable pause. Then Daniel said, " Alright, I gave you my story, now tell me how you and the other Daniel got together? "

Now it was Samantha's turn to blush. It had been over a year, but she could still feel the electricity in Daniel's kiss when his lips touched her bruised ones. " We got thrown together because of the tape. You're right about feminism not making the same inroads – there was a Doctor there, McKay, who thought he was God's gift to women. He kept hitting on me until one day he went to far… Daniel got involved, and afterwards… well, it happened pretty quickly. I've never jumped into bed with a guy but with Daniel it felt – natural. "

Her voice faltered when she got to Daniel's torture and implantation with the Goa'uld parasite. " I guess he knew what was happening to him, because after he got back, when he would have already had that – that thing inside him, he held me and said no matter what, he loved me. I guess he knew he was… going. "

Daniel wrapped his arms tightly, protectively around Samantha. He of all people knew what it was like to lose a loved one – in spirit and then in body – to the Goa'uld. " It's a pretty crappy thing to witness, " he agreed sagely.

Daniel yawned, and stretched. " I think it's time we went to bed, " he suggested. For her own protection, Samantha shared a tent with Daniel – it was convenient for them to have the other men believe she was his mistress. They left the Mistress of the Hero of the Rebellion alone. He'd actually been working on a way to suggest they get married without her getting the wrong idea.

They made their way to the tent and went to bed in their separate quarters of the tent. Both of them lay awake, pretending to sleep, distracted by each other's story and memories that had been disturbed – and the ever-present reminder of the bond they had together.

Samantha heard Daniel tossing and turning restlessly. So he was getting no more sleep then she was. She couldn't sleep because everytime she closed her eyes, she saw Daniel. Not the Daniel she had made love with and had a brief relationship, but the Daniel she spent every night with platonically. She had visions of him as if he were 'her' Daniel. She imagined what it would be like to kiss him. He would be more sure of himself, she felt, but just as passionate. He would drive her crazy as he ran his mouth over her body, and growl when she ran her fingers over his skin. He would –

" Sam…. " Daniel gave a low groan from the other side of the tent. Samantha looked over attentively. He didn't say anything else, and she realised he must have done it unconsciously. But it was the end of her restrained. She knew he wanted her, and she wanted him. She didn't care what would happen in the morning, just wanted him now.

Rising from bed, Samantha stripped of her bedclothes and crept over to Daniel's semi-conscious body. Lying next to him, scarcely believing she was being so bold but being unable to do anything but follow her desire, she draped one bare leg across his body. Her thigh brushed against his growing hard-on.

She reached one hand underneath his shirt, her fingers running over his rippling muscles. Daniel murmured his appreciation as he gradually became aware of the situation. " What the… !" he said incredulously when he realised that the object of his desire was lying next to him, naked. Without thinking about it, his eyes wandered over her naked body. She was beautiful. " Sam – do you know what you're doing? "

She leaned over to kiss him. " You don't have to fight me like you did with her, " she whispered provocatively. She lowered her hand to his crotch, and murmured her approval.

Daniel growled, just like she'd imagined he would. " Don't… do this… for the… wrong… reasons… " he managed to say. " I can still… stop… if… you… want… to…. Oh, Dear God, " he groaned when Samantha began rubbing him exactly the way he liked it. Idly he wondered if he and the other Daniel had had the same turn-ons because she sure knew what she was doing.

She climbed on top on him and kissed him briefly. " I love you, Daniel Jackson, " she murmured. " Is that a good enough reason? "

He wrapped one arm around her tightly, and flipped them around so she was beneath him. " I love you too, " he replied, and he kissed her as softly as he could given the hormones that was raging inside of him.

He was more sure of himself, but no less passionate. His mouth tasted like she had expected – like her Daniel, but like something else she couldn't name but had anticipated nonetheless. His hands… his hands… Samantha whimpered when one of Daniel's hands slipped between her thighs. Anticipating her reaction, he clamped his free hand over her mouth as she bucked against him involuntarily and squealed when he slipped his fingers inside her. He was pretty sure the muffled sound she made against his hand was his name.

She helped him take off his clothes with a fever that matched his own. By the time he was naked, he couldn't remember being so hot for a woman – at least not since Samantha. " Please, " Samantha begged, parting her legs and reaching her arms out for him. She was just as hot as he was.

Needing no further encouragement, Daniel slid between her legs and almost cried out with exhilaration. She wrapped her legs tightly around him and he began thrusting hard and fast. " I'm sorry, but this'll be quick, " he panted breathlessly after a few minutes, managing to bring her to orgasm moments before he did.

He slumped on top of her, kissing her face lazily. " I'll make it up to you next time, " he promised.

Samantha smiled and kissed him. He probably wouldn't appreciate the comparison, so she didn't say anything, but it was so like what the other Daniel had said after their first time.

They lay in blissful silence together, bodies and hands entwined, for ten minutes before Daniel said, " I've been meaning to bring something up. How would you feel about marrying me? "

Samantha looked at him in astonishment. " What for? " she asked, perplexed. " Everyone already thinks I'm your mistress, so what if now I am? "

" Yeah, that's just it. You'll be treated with a lot more respect if you were my wife. Look, it's stupid, I know, but it's the way it is. I've been meaning to bring it up as a matter of convenience but now… now I really do want you to be my wife. I love you, Samantha Carter. "

" Me? " Samantha asked cautiously. " Or the fact that I look like… her. "

Daniel raised his eyebrows. " I could ask you the same question. "

" I asked you first. "

Daniel sighed. " Sam, I couldn't be with you just because you look like her. " That was the wonderful thing about Egyptian prostitutes. They looked nothing like his blond-haired, blue-eyed love. Hmm, that was something he definitely was not going to mention to her. She might understand the practical need of it, but not from her emotional perspective. He could barely stand the idea of her being with any other man himself. Hell, he could barely stand the idea of her being with the other Daniel.

" You're like her in some ways – and different in others. And I love you as you. And I want to marry you because I love you. "

Samantha smiled. " I feel the same, " she said softly. A pause. " Yes, I'll marry you. "

Daniel's face lit up, and he kissed Samantha passionately. Now that the initial fire was gone, he was able to take things slower without feeling like he would burst. His fingers were gentle, slowly teasing. His mouth explored, wanting to savour the journey rather then look forward to the destination. Pretty soon, his ministration were having a pretty heady effect on her. " Daniel, " she whispered his name. " Daniel… " she reached downward, and he snatched her hand away.

" No way, " he said, smiling adoringly at her. " I told you I'd make it up to you… "