Major General Jack O'Neill looked at his desk phone for the hundredth time. It still refused to ring. He glanced back at the laptop open on the desk before him. The clock in the corner of the screen told him it was just after 1300 Hours and he knew if he rolled his cursor over the time the date would come up. Since he was feeling rather sorry for himself at the moment, and allowing himself to wallow in the emotion a bit, he did so.

"October Twentieth," he murmured under his breath, "Fabulous!" He could hear the sarcasm in his own voice; the phone was not ringing.

Jack positioned his fingers on the keyboard. Maybe reports would distract him. "Ha!" he said aloud to no one in particular.

After several long minutes pretending to read the reports on his screen, the phone actually did begin to ring. His heart racing, hoping, Jack grabbed for it. "General O'Neill…"

"Jack!" Damn. It was only the President.

"Good afternoon, sir."

"Same to you. Just calling to wish you a Happy Birthday, Jack."

"Yes, thank you, Mr. President." Jack tried to keep the disappointment out of his voice, but he couldn't help wishing it really was a happy birthday. Unfortunately, phone calls from the President were no longer that exciting, and this was definitely not who Jack had been hoping would call.

"No problem. I know how much we all owe you. Speaking of which, since there is, fortunately, no immediate crisis in need of your attention, and in honor of your birthday, I was calling to suggest you take the rest of the afternoon off."

Great, just what he needed: an entire afternoon free to feel sorry for himself. There were some things you couldn't say, though, especially not to the President of the United States. "Thank you sir, I appreciate that."

'My pleasure." Damn the man if Jack couldn't hear him smiling. He hated happy people! "Oh, and Jack?"

"Yes sir?"

"I sent you a little something for your birthday. It should be waiting for you at home. I hope you like it…"


A short while later, Jack O'Neill arrived home. His dark mood had not been significantly improved by leaving work, nor by the promise of having the President's 'famous' fruit basket waiting for him at home. At least it would add some nutritional value to the Guiness he'd picked up at the local Kwiki Mart.

Happy Birthday to me, he thought bitterly as he stepped into the kitchen of his newly renovated farmhouse, and froze in surprise. The expected fruit-basket was present, of course, sitting on the kitchen table, but next to it… Samantha Carter turned to look up at him, her smile seeming to light up the room as surely as it lit the darkened corners of his soul.

"Hi, Jack."

He knew he was standing there grinning like an imbecile, but he couldn't care less. "Carter!"

Still smiling, she explained, "We just got back this morning, and General Landry and the President though you might like something 'special' for your birthday, and there was an empty seat on a flight to DC from Peterson…"

Jack really didn't care. Four weeks was an awfully long time, especially during what could only be described as all-out-war against the Ori. He stepped towards her, and she stepped forward to meet him half-way. Pulling her into his arms, he lowered his mouth to hers.

Their lips pressed roughly together, mutual hunger driving away all gentleness. His tongue thrust forward and she opened her mouth to him, twisting against him to increase their contact, her body soft and welcoming against his urgent need. Fingers fumbled with clothing between them, and suddenly he was pressing her against the wall, her long legs wrapped around his waist. One thrust buried him deeply inside her, his mouth never releasing hers, tasting her with his tongue as he claimed her with his body.

Four thrusts and it was over, her body convulsing around him, pulling him still deeper even as he exploded inside her. Only then did he break-off the kiss, lowering his forehead to hers as her feet slid back to the floor. They stood for long moments in each others arms, forehead-to-forehead, body-to-body, lost in each others eyes, panting for breath.

Finally able to speak again, Sam chuckled against his lips, "Happy Birthday, General."

He laughed in response and, slipping his arm around her, led her upstairs to their bedroom. Only much later, hungry from activity, did they remember the fruit basket at which time Jack concluded that, under the right circumstances, fruit baskets could actually be better than birthday cake.