TITLE: Christmas Gifts For Aliens
AUTHOR: Matt, December 2005
SUMMARY: Sam's having problems deciding what to get her alien friends for Christmas.
SEASON: Present (season 9) or future
RATING: PG
DISCLAIMER: Characters portrayed are not mine. They are the property of MGM et al.
NOTE: It's difficult to know how to classify this one, so I'll say it's a Christmas novelty with minor hints of ship. If you know me, you'll have a fair idea of which het pairings are mentioned in passing.
NOTE 2: This came to me during a slow sales night at the mall.
NOTE 3: All calendars described can be bought at your local friendly mall calendar kiosk, provided we've not sold out!
THANKS: To Allie for the beta.


The problem was simple, Sam decided. What do you get aliens for Christmas? Unfortunately, the answer was more difficult.

Teal'c had already ruined things by purchasing Episode III of Star Wars the day it was released. He'd also braved the day after Thanksgiving sales to buy additional items for his ever-increasing collection of Star Wars memorabilia.

Sam smothered a laugh when Cameron had first laid eyes on the collection. While it was understandable that Ish'ta had been confused at her lover's hobby, Cam's eyes had literally bulged. "You have to be kidding me!" he'd gasped.

"Indeed, I do not, Colonel Mitchell," had been the response.

One could only imagine how the Jaffa Council might react.

No other science fiction production's merchandise would do for Teal'c. Jack gave him the Wormhole X-Treme box set one year which had proven to be a big mistake. The disks had been exchanged before the year was out. Star Trek was also a no-no. "It is not a realistic representation of Earth," was the reason given.

Sam had already gone halfway down the length of the mall before any ideas began to form. Two stalls were positioned next to each other; one sold T-shirts and the other calendars. She looked from one to the other and back again, possibilities sliding into her brain.

Jonas would be easy if she shopped here. A T-shirt would easily fit into the pack of whoever was next going to Kelowna. Sam thought he might appreciate the one of a bandit snowman pointing a hairdryer at another snow figure that had its stick arms in the air. The caption read, "Freeze!" Then again, maybe he'd like the black shirt with the wolf on it. Or how about the eagle and the American flag?

Maybe Jonas wasn't so easy after all.

How about a calendar? Then he'd know what date it was on Earth. He'd often commented that he lost track. But there were so many kinds to choose from. Would he like cars, or one of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Editions? Baseball? Hawaiian beaches? How about dogs or astronomy? There was origami and Batman, planes and puzzles.

Oh, wait. Star Wars. She grabbed at the title. That would do Teal'c. She didn't recall seeing a Star Wars calendar in his room.

But there was a golf title, several golf titles. Would Teal'c prefer one of those? No, she'd stick with Star Wars and get a golf desk one for Jack. If Teal'c preferred the golf title, she could always get Jack something else.

Sam decided she might as well try to find something for Vala while she was here. But there was another difficult person to buy for. On the surface, Vala was all about sex and fashion, but in reality she was much more complex.

Besides, if Sam got Vala a calendar of nearly naked men, she'd never hear the end of it from Daniel. His girlfriend would be constantly comparing him to the model of the month and, even if it was in jest, Sam knew he'd only be able to take it for so long.

With the noise of the mall encircling her, Sam didn't immediately realize it was her cell phone that was ringing. By the time she did, it had already gone through a complete rendition of The Simpsons theme and she found herself silently cursing Jack O'Neill. The man might enjoy playing dumb, but sometimes he was too smart for his own good. Had he not been her commanding officer at the time, he might have suffered death - or worse - for downloading and programming that piece of music to be her cell's ring tone.

Of course, Sam wasn't going to dwell on the fact she'd not reprogrammed it more to her liking. Instead, she flipped it open and answered it. "Carter."

"Hey, where are you?"

Speak of the devil… "Hi Daniel," she said with a smile. "At the mall."

"Ouch. Poor you." Daniel hated shopping and had already bought everything online, or so he claimed. So far, he'd managed to avoid taking Vala to the mall, but Sam had a feeling he'd wear down soon.

Speaking of which… "I'm at this stand that sells calendars. Do you think Vala would like one?"

"A calendar?"

"Yes."

"If it had naked men on it," Daniel retorted. "But please don't get her one of those."

"Don't worry. How about naked women instead?"

Her friend laughed. "I think that might be a better one for Jonas."

Done. She grabbed the smaller of the Sports Illustrated titles and added it to her collection.

"Chocolate? Tropical beaches?"

"Chocolate sounds good."

"Thanks." She shuffled the four calendars in her hand. "Just Cassie now."

"No problem. If there's something with Orlando Bloom on it get that."

Sam stared at the entertainment shelf. "Help," she croaked, feeling overwhelmed.

"What's up?"

"Do I get her Lord of the Rings, Pirates of the Caribbean or just Orlando."

There was laughter from the other end of the line. "Go for just Orlando. Get one of the others and she'd whine that there wasn't enough of him."

"Okay." Sam reached out to get one. As she did so, she lost her grip on the calendars she already held.

Instantly, a sales associate was at her side. "Let me take these for you," she said with a smile that didn't quite reach her eyes. Sam could sympathise; the mall could get nasty at this time of year.

"Daniel, I'm going to have to call you back."

"Sure. Jack around?"

"Try his office. He claimed paperwork as a reason not to come with me."

"He must be really wanting to avoid shopping."

"He'll do it Christmas Eve."

"As usual. Okay, I'll talk to you later. Bye."

Sam put away her phone and turned to the associate. "I think I'm done," she said feeling relieved.

An hour later, as Sam was leaving the Washington area mall, it occurred to her that somehow she had to get her purchases back to Colorado. They weren't all going to fit in her overnight bag.

Oh well, maybe the Prometheus or Daedalus was in orbit and she could utilise the Asgaard beaming technology on board. If they weren't, Jack would just have to play pack horse and bring them with him when he came home for Christmas.

FINIS