WE'RE REALLY PARENTS
Just a week before Sam's due date, the O'Neills found themselves at the SGC once again.
They'd been summoned separately to a briefing led by Colonel Mitchell and the current SG1 on the recent Ori incursions. As long as they were needed at the mountain, Sam was more than happy to take advantage of one last profession visit with Janet, the only doctor she really trusted with her pre-natal exams. Truth be told, Janet was the only one she really wanted to deliver these babies.
The "briefing" dragged on for nearly three hours. Mitchell and Vala shared detailed information regarding the effectiveness of the improved weapons arrays Sam had developed at the NID lab. Mitchell reported promising results from their first field trial of the weapons and despite her fatigue, Sam was encouraged. Once Cam finished his presentation, Daniel offered in depth data on the anthropomorphic changes which had apparently influenced the Ori to break with the original Alterans (the current Ancients) in the first place.
Jack, never one to appreciate the intricacies of these meetings or to feign interest when he was really bored, stifled more than a few yawns as Daniel droned on. He earned a couple of less than gentle kicks under the table from his wife when she felt he was becoming too obvious. After all, he was the highest ranking officer present and needed to look the part. She knew from long experience that he was paying attention, but the newer staff might rightly take offense and feel less than appreciated.
Finally the briefing ended as General Landry announced a plan to monitor the growth of the Ori fleet and develop a more effective defense grid for Earth should the fight extend into the Milky Way. Jack's responsibility was to sell this plan and its financial commitments to the Pentagon.
Once he and Sam were alone, holding his head in his hands, Jack exclaimed, "Thank God that's over! I love Daniel like a brother and all, but if he says one more word to me about the significance of the rock formations on P3X-129, I will not be responsible for my actions!"
Sam rolled her eyes and giggled softly before reaching out to take his hand. "Well, let's move on to our next stop. I want to find out when the twins are planning to make their appearance."
"Good idea, I can listen to Janet talk about our kids all day."
They'd walked most of the way to the infirmary when suddenly Sam doubled over in pain, grasping her abdomen. Jack, walking just beside her, quickly wrapped his arm around her and was about to call for a medical team.
"Jack, just walk me to the infirmary. It was a pretty strong contraction and I wasn't ready for it."
"Contraction? When did this start?"
"About fifteen minutes ago."
"When were you going to say something?"
"We were talking about the fate of the world as we know it. The twins are going to be in here for awhile yet. I thought it could wait."
"Very funny. Are you sure you're okay?"
"Yes, Jack, I'm fine," she said, reassuringly patting the hand that had found its way around her. She leaned slightly into him, happy for his emotional and physical support as they continued on their way.
They made it to the infirmary without further excitement. When Janet saw Sam come in, leaning on Jack for support, she was concerned.
"Hey guys, what's happening?"
"I think the twins are anxious to meet their Aunt Janet. They started trying to get out about an hour ago." Sam replied with a grin.
"You're having contractions. How far apart are they?"
"Five minutes apart for the last fifteen minutes."
"What? Come on, let's get you on the exam table and see what these kids are doing. Jack, are you up for all of this?"
"Undomesticated equines, Doc. Wild horses couldn't keep me away." He said, gently squeezing Sam's shoulder as she prepared for the exam.
Janet was surprised by the rapid progression of Sam's labor. First babies were famous for taking their time. But these two seemed in a big hurry right from the beginning. Within another hour, Sam was being transferred to the surgical suite, the closest the SGC had to a delivery room.
Jack remained by her side throughout the entire labor and delivery. Holding her hand, rubbing her back, whispering in soothing tones to her while she struggled valiantly to control her breathing and manage the pain without medication, Jack was exactly the strength she knew he would be throughout the experience.
Looking into his eyes after their first child, a daughter, was born, Sam was moved to see tears streaming down her husband's face. Exhausted, she smiled at him radiantly just before the next contraction reminded her that the little girl's brother was ready to meet his parents as well. Within ten minutes, a second child, their little boy, made his way into the world with cries guaranteed to wake either of them from the soundest sleep. As she caught her breath and looked up at her adoring husband, smoothing back the hair from her forehead, all she could say was "I love you."
Just thirty minutes later Sam and Jack were alone in the observation room, each holding a newborn baby in their arms.
"This is incredible, look at them, look what we've done." Sam said, her voice quavering slightly.
"More incredible than blowing up a sun?" Jack asked, a smile on his face.
"More impressive than blowing up three Goa'uld motherships?"
"How about killing lots of snakeheads, or riding cargo ships through the planet?"
"More than any of that, Jack. We made two beautiful babies. It's a miracle. They're miracles. Actually, you know, these miracles need names."
"True enough. We decided to decide after they were born, didn't we."
"Your idea if I remember correctly, Sir."
"Am I in trouble here?"
"No way, Daddy."
"Good. In that case, how about we name our little girl first?"
"I've been thinking about our little girl. I'd like to name her after my friend Grace. She would have been so happy for us." Sam said with a touch of sadness.
"I never got to know Grace. I think I would have liked her from what you tell me."
"I know you two would have been friends. I really miss her, Jack. Sometimes when I'm thinking about how happy we are I can't help but think of all that Grace missed out on." Sam leaned into Jack's embrace as bittersweet memories of her friend began to mix with the euphoria of the birth.
"Grace is a beautiful name, Sam. I'd be proud to have my daughter named after someone so important to her mother. More than that, I have a feeling she will be a true grace in our lives and the lives of many others." Jack reached around Sam with one arm and slipped his smallest finger between the tiny fingers of his daughter as he kissed the baby's forehead. He was already enchanted by Grace and by her twin brother, now sleeping so peacefully in his other arm.
"And what about the little guy? Jack Jr.?" Sam suggested tentatively.
"No son of mine is going to be a junior. Actually I was thinking of naming him after one of the bravest men I've known to serve this country. He'd be very proud of all of us today. Especially you, Sam. Jacob would have been thrilled today."
"All he really wanted was to see me happy, Jack. And I am, completely happy. You'd really name our son after my father?"
"I'd be honored to name him after Jacob. Can't do much better. He'll make your dad proud, Sam."
Jack looked up from his son to meet his wife's eyes once again. She'd fallen asleep, not surprising after the exertions of the past few hours. He gently took Grace from her arms and laid the little girl in the basinet and her quietly sleeping brother in the nearby crib.
You look so peaceful, little ones, not a care in the world. I'll do everything in my power to keep you safe. You and your mother mean everything to me. I know we'll have some tough times, but your mom and I will be there, always. You can count on both of us, no matter what happens. We will love you both forever.
A/N: Thank you to everyone who has persevered in reading this story. I'm especially grateful to the reviewers, those of you who took the time to give me feedback. All of your comments were important to me and helped me want to continue the story.
And continue it I will! I'm making a break here as it seems to be getting quite long. The next segment of what is now a saga, will focus on the growth of the O'Neill family as they start to raise their children. Titled And The Greatest of These is Love, the first chapter will be appearing soon and I hope that you will look for it. Threads, or "plot bunnies" as a faithful reviewer called them, will be continued from Backstory.
I'm planning to wait a week or two before starting, but since I love writing these stories, not sure how long I can wait!