Sam and Janet went to the room where Janet had set up the equipment for ultrasound. One of her staff who had been trained in the technique joined her. Sam changed into the paper gown and lay down on the examining table. Warm gel was smeared on her abdomen and the woman began to move something around on her mid-section as pictures appeared on a monitor. Janet provided a running commentary to Sam as to what they were looking at and what it meant.
Almost immediately, she made a soft exclamation. "Will you look at that!"
"What," Sam asked, afraid that Janet had seen babies with tentacles or extra limbs.
"You're carrying twins, Sam. See the two separate sacs?" Janet pointed on the monitor. Sam could indeed see two separate sacs with little creatures inside of them. Sam was overcome with so many overwhelming emotions she gave up trying to sort them out. She wanted to laugh and she wanted to cry. The rest of the process was a blur but the outcome was that Janet concluded that she was probably about 4 months pregnant.
"I don't have the equipment or the expertise to try to do the amnio," Janet said, "although we can do the DNA analysis here once we get the fluid. Remember I told you it'll be 2 or 3 weeks before we know anything. I've made an appointment for you at Presbyterian. Here's the information," and she handed Sam a card. "I called in a favor and they can do it this afternoon. Do you want me to go with you?"
"That's sweet, Janet, but I'll be okay." She started to leave, tucking the card in her pocket but turned back for a moment. "What was going on with Daniel, really, when I came in? You wouldn't have told him anything?" Sam sounded very apologetic for the question but still clearly needed to be reassured.
"It really had nothing to do with your condition, Sam," Janet obliged her by saying. Janet seemed to hesitate and then said, "Sam, we've talked about Daniel and you've always said you could not think about him romantically any more than you could your brother Mark. You've been encouraging me for months to make a move in his direction. Let's say he was your baby's father. Would you be thinking about marrying him? Would it matter if he was involved with someone else, well, like me?"
Sam was preoccupied with her own problems and not really in the mood for this discussion which presumed Daniel would be the father before she had even had the tests. But Janet was a good friend and she deserved an answer. "I'd want Daniel involved in our child's life but marrying someone you don't love, not romantically anyway, just because you're having a baby together doesn't make sense. Sooner or later one of you will meet someone you do love and there'll be hell to pay." She thought to herself about her fantasies about marrying Daniel and having a houseful of children but they had only been fantasies to pass the time in captivity and to keep from getting too into the idea of being married to Jack, right?
Janet said, "That makes sense to me. Good luck at the hospital." Sam nodded absently, her mind already on the tests, and went on.
After Sam finished with the procedure at Presbyterian Hospital, she noticed the hospital chapel on the way out. On a whim, she slipped inside and sat in the simple but beautifully appointed little room. Prayer had made the difference in dealing with her fears for her teammates in captivity. They had all escaped and she hadn't yet said thank you. She left the hospital a half an hour later, feeling just a little less alone.
The next two weeks were like running an obstacle course. Daniel and Jack were the obstacles. She didn't want to talk to either one of them if she could avoid it. The level of difficulty increased as they began actively trying to find her. Inevitably there were occasions when she found herself forced to talk with one or the other or the both of them but she managed not to give anything away. She also managed to really worry both of them. It was plain from the expressions on their faces and the too patient "I'm talking to a sick person" tone of voice they used even when she as an absolute bitch.
Through great force of will, Sam avoided crying at work but that was the only time she wasn't at least sniffling. She knew with some sort of completely unfounded precognition that the babies would belong to either Daniel or Jack. It would be a huge problem, ruin her friendships probably with both men, and possibly torpedo her career. Then there was what would happen when her father heard about this. That thought was truly chilling.
Two weeks and two days after the test -- Sam knew exactly how long since she was definitely counting -- she got a phone call from Janet. As luck would have it, both Daniel and Jack had cornered her in her lab when she picked up.
Janet said, "Sam, I've got the test results. Do you want to come down and talk about them?" Janet's voice was flat and gave nothing away.
Sam didn't know if she could will her body to go to the infirmary. It was as if she had to strike now before she had any time to think about it and lose her courage. "Just tell me. Please."
"Sam, wouldn't it be easier in person?"
Sam looked at Daniel and Jack who didn't look particularly interested in her end of the conversation. She had to know now. "Wouldn't change anything would it?"
Janet sighed. "Okay. Sam, you are carrying fraternal twins, both boys. You're the mother. They have different fathers. One is Jack's and one is Daniel's."
Suddenly Daniel and Jack became intensely interested in her conversation as Sam's eyes rolled up in her head and she fainted, only missing cracking her head on her desk because Jack moved unbelievably fast. When she came to, she was stretched out on the cot at the back of her lab with Janet leaning over her. Daniel and Jack were hovering behind her. Sam was overwhelming tired and just wanted a fast trip to an alternate reality. Instead she levered herself to a sitting position.
Janet began checking her over despite her protests. "Sam, you need to take care of yourself and you absolutely need to see a doctor if you have anything like this happen again. There are complications that could be indicated. I think you should come down to the infirmary with me."
Sam shook her head vigorously. "Not now, Janet. I can't. Not now."
Janet looked at the two men quickly and then back at Sam. "You don't want to stay here, do you?"
The two men looked at each other. Sam could tell that they knew she and Janet were speaking in code somehow. "It'll be okay. Daniel and Jack'll stay here with me. I need to talk to them, anyway."
Janet looked mildly surprised which made Sam realize she probably thought Sam was planning on telling them about the babies now when all she meant was finishing up the work related conversation they had been having when Janet called. There was no way to correct the misunderstanding easily so she just let it go and made a mental note to clear it up with her later.
After they finished their discussion with Sam, Jack and Daniel walked a short distance down the hall, and stopped to talk. Daniel leaned back against the wall and stated the obvious, "Sam's got to be having some sort of continuing medical problem from when we were captives."
"I'm so glad you spelled that out for the little people, Danny," Jack said.
"I hate leaving her alone," Daniel added.
"Wake up and smell the rejection, Daniel," Jack said, moving to lean back next to Daniel. "She's been avoiding us pretty hard. Right now, she shooed us out of there like she had a hot date showing up momentarily." He slapped Daniel on the arm. "Let's talk about something more upbeat. It's time for my daily progress report. You got an answer from Janet yet?"
"I told you, Jack," Daniel responded patiently, "she said wait a couple of weeks."
"A couple of weeks it has been, young Padwan learner," Jack said.
"You've been talking to Teal'c, haven't you?" He's been ODing on "Star Trek" and "Star Wars" ever since we came back."
"The question you have not answered," Jack continued without a let up.
"Okay, okay. If you'll drop the Yoda imitation, I'll go talk to her," Daniel conceded.
"If it will make it easier, why don't you two join Sara and me for dinner at Scampi's?" Jack suggested.
"Let's see if she'll go out with me at all before we worry about that," Daniel said.
As he went to the infirmary, he couldn't help but think about Sam's mysterious problem. As a result, he walked into Janet's office looking pretty upset. Janet saw his face and developed an expression of instant sympathy. "I hate what Sam's going through," Daniel said without preamble and dropped into Janet's guest chair.
"What are you going to do?" Janet asked.
"I can't do anything, really. I mean she wants it to be her problem and she doesn't want to let Jack or me help her." They sat in silence for a moment. Then Daniel straightened up, determined not to stay down. He was free after all and would never eat mush again. "Look, Janet, when we talked a couple of weeks ago about, you know, dating, you said ask again in a couple of weeks." She was staring at him absolutely amazed. Daniel suddenly thought maybe he had misread the signals. "I'm sorry. I guess maybe you were just trying to let me down easy. I'll just go."
"Daniel, you are more trouble to keep in a conversation. You just keep trying to bolt," Janet said sounding a little amused. "If my reaction is strange, I just wasn't expecting you to still be interested. I thought you would be tied up with Sam's situation."
Daniel refused to let himself get irritated about this continual attempt to pair him with Sam. "Janet, I will always be there for Sam but I can only do what she will let me do. She loves me but she doesn't love me. You know? I've got my own life."
"And you don't think she'd be upset by you going out with me given her situation?" Janet stated it more like confirmation of something she believed to be true than a question.
"Huh?" was all that Daniel could come up with.
"Then okay. Let's try a date and see how it feels."
Daniel could see he had true missionary work ahead of him getting the image of Daniel pining away for Sam out of Janet's head but she looked so adorable and pixyish at that moment that he was willing to do the time. "Great. Jack suggested we join him and Sara for dinner. Would you like that? She's a really fun lady."
"Sara, as in his ex-wife?" Janet asked.
Daniel nodded. "Is that a problem?" he said a little surprised.
"Of course not," she said. "I just didn't know." She changed the subject quickly to get past the awkward moment. "You want to pick me up or meet at the restaurant?"
"I'll pick you up. Let's say at 7:00. I'll make sure of the time with Jack and let you know right away if it's off." He smiled, suddenly a little shy, and said, "I'm really looking forward to it."
After he left, Janet tried to call Sam, sure that she needed someone to talk to after the experience of announcing two of her closet friends that she was having their child. She didn't answer. SG-15 came back through the gate a few minutes later with several wounded, two gravely. Janet barely was able to leave in time for her date and never had time to call Sam back.
In all the years she had been at Cheyenne Mountain, Sam had never left work once in a fit of pique. She felt she had built up a whole bank account of self-pampering moments that she should be entitled to use if she could ever quell her workaholic nature long enough to do it. As she watched Jack and Daniel go out her lab door she just knew she couldn't stay there a moment longer. It was time to dip into her account.
She went to the Mall first and spent a young fortune in a Bath and Body Works on creams, lotions, bath products, and candles in the aromatherapy line. She went for things that were supposed to induce calm and serenity. Then she stopped at a video store and got a sack of DVDs for all her favorite comedies, heavy on the Kevin Kline films. She stopped in a bookstore, initially looking for good escapist fiction but found she was drawn to the books for expectant mothers. She was a scientist. If something was happening to her body, she should understand it from a scientific point of view. She noted with great curiosity that she was having far less problem with crying than before she received the test results. It was easier now that she actually knew for sure. She could begin to do something rather than just dread what she might have to do. Sam knew that the first thing she had to do was tell the fathers but it should be done right. This was the beginning of two children's whole lives, of their relationships with their dads.
After months of feeling queasy, Sam's appetite had picked up in the last couple of weeks. She had found that she craved Italian food in particular. In one of her rare conversations with Jack and Daniel over the past few weeks, Jack had mentioned a new Italian restaurant he had become quite fond of, Scampi's. She called them and ordered a big Italian meal for pick up to go with the aromatherapy and the DVDs. She was waiting patiently off to one side for them to bring her food out to the front when the door opened and two laughing couples came in. She looked through some ferns to see Jack and Daniel. Jack had his arm around Sara, his ex-wife. Sam couldn't believe it. She had no idea he was even seeing her. Sara was convulsed by something he was whispering in her ear. Daniel was with Janet. While Sam watched, Daniel leaned over and tucked a lock of hair behind her ear. Janet murmured something and Daniel grinned at her affectionately. They vanished from view, immediately ushered to their reserved table. Sam cautiously ventured out of her alcove, virtually snatched the food out of the hostess' hands and fled into the night.
By the time she got home, she was crying great shuddering sobs, and barely able to keep the car on the road. She hadn't chosen to get pregnant but she was. She had been sick as a dog for months. Her life was about to be turned upside down and her babies' fathers were out on the town with other women, never mind that she had given one of them her blessing. She dropped the food on the counter and saw the stack of drawings from her captivity. The contrast with her fantasies was crushing. She picked up the drawings and crammed them into the fireplace. The smoke carried her dreams up the chimney and the warmth fled her body and her heart as the ashes cooled and grew cold.
Then something wonderful happened. Her babies moved. Butterfly flutters tapped at her abdomen. She rested her hand on her stomach and said, gently, "Hello babies." That was too impersonal. On the spot she named them. They might have nothing else of their fathers so they were entitled to their names. "Hello Danny. Hello Jacky." It wasn't Sam alone. It was the three of them together. Then she realized that in addition to the company of the two unseen babies there was the presence of the unseen God who had been with her in her prison cell. Her heart slowly warmed and she sat for a long time in an embrace with unseen love.