Category: Romance, Angst
Pairings: Sam/Jack; slight Sam/Pete
Season: Set during Season 8 before Threads
Spoilers: Slight ones for In the Line of Duty, Fair Game, Red Sky, Smoke and Mirrors, Disclosure, Fragile Balance, Affinity, and Endgame.
Summary: Sam makes an eventful decision to save Earth and is forced to pay the price.
Author's Notes: This is the very first story that I have posted, so any constructive criticism is appreciated. It has taken me months to work up the nerve to actually post it – and I still think the story needs work. It was written before the end of Season 8 aired. Therefore, I guess you could say it is AU since it ignores what happened in Threads. I also need to point out that I did do research on international law and I have taken many, many liberties with it to make the story work. In other words, the legal information in this story is not really accurate – it's the product of my imagination!
Many thanks go out to my betas on this. Nat and Renee – thank you so much for your help and encouragement. This is a much better story because of your suggestions!
The commissary was humming with the sound of SGC personnel conversing over their midday meals. Much like any other day, most of the tables were occupied by a diverse array of officers, scientists, and enlisted personnel.
At the far end of the room, Lieutenant Colonel Samantha Carter was carefully balancing a great glob of blue jell-o on a spoon, guiding it gingerly into her open mouth. Her teammate and resident SGC archaeologist, Dr. Daniel Jackson, sat across from his friend smirking in amusement as he watched her savor her favorite dessert.
"You know, Sam, you are the only person I know who absolutely loves jell-o. I know many people who like jell-o, and many who hate it, but very few who truly love it."
"What can I say, Daniel? I like being different. Besides, jell-o is one of the most highly underrated desserts on the planet. And blue jell-o is probably the most underrated of all the jell-o flavors."
She smiled playfully as she guided the last heaping spoonful into her mouth, her face lighting up in utter bliss as she savored the taste. Her spoon clinked against the now empty bowl as she lowered it.
Checking her watch quickly, she muttered, "We better get going, Daniel. We have a briefing in ten minutes." Both stood to leave, picking up their lunch trays. Still absorbed in light lunchtime banter, they turned towards the door in curiosity as they heard the sounds of steady, strong steps entering the room.
The noise emanated from a small group of SFs entering the commissary and marching with determination towards them. One of the SFs, the apparent leader of the group, moved to stand at attention in front of the Lieutenant Colonel. Daniel immediately turned to Sam, questioning her with his eyes. She merely shrugged to let him know that she no idea about what was going on.
By this time, the others occupying the room had ceased their conversations and turned towards the scene unfolding before them. Through the uncomfortable silence, every occupant of the room strained to hear what was being said between the newest arrivals and the Lieutenant Colonel.
The SF in front of Sam cleared his throat and announced almost nervously, "I'm sorry ma'am, but we need to take you into custody."
Daniel looked from the airman to Sam, surprised when he saw an almost imperceptible trace of worry and guilt grace his friend's features as she questioned the SF.
"What's going on here, Sergeant Johnson?" Sam asked hesitantly, questioningly.
Sergeant Johnson squared his shoulders as he looked at the Colonel apologetically. He cleared his throat yet again and explained, "I have been ordered to escort you to a holding cell, Colonel Carter."
Daniel's mouth immediately flew open in shock, primed and ready to defend his friend. "Why?" he demanded.
Johnson shook his head, "I don't know, sir. I'm just following orders." The young man then removed a pair of handcuffs from his side and moved to place them on Sam.
"Are those really necessary?" Daniel eyed the handcuffs with suspicion.
Sam looked at Daniel and reassured him with a slight smile, silently asking him to back off. It was sweet of him, wanting to defend her, but she knew that she was perfectly capable of taking care of herself. She faced the SF head-on and entreated him, "You know me, Johnson. I promise to go quietly. There really is no need for the handcuffs."
The young man looked at the Colonel briefly and then nodded slightly as he put the cuffs away. "If you would follow me, ma'am." He motioned for her to go first and instructed the other three SFs to follow behind.
Within seconds, the group of SFs and Sam disappeared from the room leaving an extremely befuddled archeologist still holding his lunch tray filled with empty plates and bowls standing in the middle of the commissary, now bustling with the chatter of gossip.