Title: Watching Me Sleep (Sequel to: 'Watching Him Sleep')

Chapter: 1 of 1

Email: She watches me sleep.

Category: Romance/Fluff

Rating: Suitable for all.

Pairing: S/J

Season: 8/9

Spoilers: Threads spoilers. Vague spoilers up 'til the end of season 8. Season 9 speculation.

Content Warnings: None.

Archive: SJFic: Yes

My site: Yes

Anywhere else: Yes

Disclaimer: Not mine. Shame really, think of the possibilities…

Author's Note: Jack's POV.

Please feed the starving artist. ;-)

She watches me sleep.

She thinks I don't know. That I haven't noticed. But I've always known.

It's kinda cute, really.

Most of the time she's real sly about it. She's become an expert at watching me out of the corner of her eye.

When she's worried it shows in the way she watches.

She stares, her eyes never leaving my (apparently) sleeping form.

At first I thought it was a team thing.

But she doesn't watch Daniel or Teal'c so… intensely.

Then I thought maybe it was the fact that I was her CO. Y'know… keeping an eye on the boss.

But it isn't.

The moment we. both finally realised what all the watching was about, she was begging me to leave her to die and save myself.

I couldn't.

Not wouldn't. I wouldn't leave anyone to die.

But I couldn't leave Carter

And we both knew. Long before a barely-clothed Tok'ra and her fancy lie-detector made us admit it aloud.

She still watched me after she started seeing Pete.

It made her feel guilty; I could see it in her face. In the way she tried not to watch me.

Then, after almost nine years of me secretly watching her secretly watching me, we went fishing.

When she came up to my cabin, after Jacob died, I gave her my bed and slept on the couch. Teal'c and the newly re-descended Dr Jackson took the guest room.

At about 04:00 one morning, I woke up and saw her sitting in the chair opposite the couch, watching me.

So I very carefully pretended to be still asleep, like I always have. She looked like she was working something out and I didn't want to disturb her.

After that, things changed very quickly. I'm leaving the SGC. Still doesn't sound right.

But I'm not retiring again, so I guess that's something.

Instead, General George Hammond is retiring and standing down as head of Homeworld Security in favour of one General Jonathan O'Neill. Me.

I swear I have to find a way of eradicating the name 'Jonathan' from my records. It never suited me anyway.

I'm lying on my side, facing away from her. I wasn't awake until I felt her run a finger over my back, it tickles.

Still feigning sleep, I roll onto my back.

She's watching me again, I can almost hear her massive brain ticking over.

It's five in the morning. We're both absolutely exhausted, for which we have no one to blame but ourselves, and she's watching me.

I leave for DC in a week, maybe she's trying to get as much watching in between now and then as possible, store it all up until next time we're together.

Maybe she's just nuts.

Come to think of it, I've never been able to pin down exactly why she watches me. I know the general reason, the whole caring-more-than-you're-supposed-to thing, but why does she still do it? I mean, we're allowed to do whatever we want now, so what's with the watching?

Time to find out, I think.

"Why do you still do that?"

"Do what?" She sounds startled; I can't believe that after nine years she still can't tell when I'm faking sleep.

"The watching thing."

"Oh." She thinks for a moment. "I don't know." She says, sounding puzzled herself.

"Uh huh."

She sends me a look that can only be described as 'sheepish'. "How long've you known?"

"How long have you been doing it?" I counter, smirking sleepily at her.

"Damn." She says, returning the smirk with a smile.

"Yeah. Time to get some sleep, you think?"

She nods and snuggles into me, her head resting on my shoulder.

"Sorry." She says.

"Don't sweat it." I pause, knowing she's gonna hate what I say next. "It's kinda cute, actually."

On cue she digs her fingers into my ribs, just there, making me squirm slightly. I grab her fingers, stopping her from doing it again. "I am not cute." She assures me.

"'Course not."

I feel her nod sleepily and she drifts off into sleep, her fingers tightly twisted in mine.

I watch her sleep.