Title: Within Reason (1/1)
Category: S/J, romance
Disclaimer: Stargate SG-1 belongs to MGM, World Gekko Corporation and Double Secret Productions. I make no profit from this story.
Spoilers: Season 8 (New Order 2, Affinity, Threads, Moebius 2)
Content warning: None
Summary: Jack and Sam have a talk at his cabin.
AN: This is an episode tag to Moebius 2. Takes place at Jack's cabin. Very sappy.
Big thanks go to Vegas Barbie for beta reading:)
Feedback is welcome and hoped (begged) for but please be gentle.
Copyright (c) 2006 Sunstar
"You'll be in charge. You can do whatever you want."
"I'll be able to do whatever I want…"
"Within reason… Sir."
The conversation had been plaguing Jack ever since it happened. Daniel had been right. He really could do anything he wanted. He was The Man, a Brigadier General, and his first order of business had been to promote Carter to Lieutenant Colonel, a fact he was still proud of. Her promotion had been well within reason. She had deserved it and so much more.
Jack had many other ideas he would like to do as well while being The Man, but he wasn't sure if they were, as Carter had said, within reason. Sure he had ordered every Monday to be a jello day and every Friday to be a chocolate cake day, but he couldn't change the one thing he wanted to change the most. The regulations. The fraternizing regulations to be exact. He had yet to find a way around those.
So much had happened since his promotion that without meaning to he had pushed the most important person in his life away, out of reach. Samantha Carter. She had gotten engaged to Pete and to hide from his pain Jack had started a relationship with Kerry Johnson. Then Carter's dad had died, she broke up with Pete and Kerry broke up with him. Even she had seen no one could take Samantha Carter's place in his heart. She had told him not to let rules and regulations stand in his way, and following her advice he had asked her to the cabin, again.
"Come fishing with me? Please. I'll invite the guys along as well." He had quietly asked her.
"Okay." Had been her just as quiet and slightly timid answer.
Her agreement to finally come fishing had been followed by a second of stunned silence and eye contact until a true, unguarded smile had spread on his face. Since her father had died she seemed closer to him and Jack wanted nothing more than to stay close to her and find out what she had wanted to tell him that day Kerry was at his house. Whatever it was it had been important based on the nervous and somewhat desperate look on her face and Jack wished Kerry had not been there. But she had and the conversation had been interrupted leaving Sam looking crushed and embarrassed. The call from the base had saved her from the awkward moment only to crush her again with the bad news about her father. Now, a few weeks after it all had happened, she seemed to be back to her old self. Still sad for her father of course, and a bit reserved around him, but her smile was back and that made Jack smile as well.
So now, here he was, with her and the guys at his cabin, sitting on his dock, pondering what to do next. Daniel being Daniel was, as usual, rambling on about some ruins and rocks he saw on another planet.
"You know, Daniel" Jack interrupted his friend's babbling "There are actually some old ruins here too, a couple of miles away."
"What, really? There are? What kind of ruins?" Daniel asked leaning forward in his chair suddenly interested.
"Oh, I dunno. Some village, a few hundred years old and some underground tunnels." Jack answered with a dismissive wave of his hand. "They have been searched of course, but nothing much was found. Now the place is pretty much forgotten."
"Nevertheless Jack, that sounds interesting! Why haven't you told me about this before when I've been here?" Daniel said sounding enthusiastic and annoyed at the same time.
Jack just shrugged. "Guess it never crossed my mind before. I've seen enough ruins off- world. I don't think about them during my time off. Like some people I know…" He added in a loud whisper making Sam giggle and Daniel roll his eyes.
"Ha ha, very funny, Jack! Now where did you say these ruins are? I'd like to go take a look, just for fun if for nothing else. Fishing is more your thing than mine."
"Fun, right!" Jack snorted, but got up anyway. "Knock yourself out, Danny boy! The ruins are about 2 miles in that direction." Jack said pointing to the forest. "I'll go get you a map."
"I think it would be wise if I were to accompany Daniel Jackson on this trip." Teal'c said when Jack returned with the map and a compass pointing the location to Daniel. "Ruins can be unstable."
"You're right, T. Someone needs to keep Danny out of trouble. Take some food and flashlights with you, the tunnels are dark. And try to return before sunset. Wouldn't want you to get lost!"
"I will make sure we return safely, O'Neill. You do not need to worry. You can relax and … fish." Teal'c answered with a tilt of his head and a slight raise of an eyebrow.
And then there were two.
- - - - -
After Daniel and Teal'c left to hunt for treasures in the forgotten ruins Jack and Sam continued to fish. After a while Sam put down her fishing gear, got up from her chair and went to sit at the end of the dock letting her legs dangle over the edge. Jack just watched her for a while before silently joining her.
"It's so beautiful here, so calm and peaceful." Sam whispered not wanting to disturb the tranquillity.
"I know. That's why I love coming up here. There's much more room to think and breathe." He said just as quietly and slowly turned to look at her. "I'm glad you came, Sam."
"I'm glad too. I've wanted to come for a long time, but…" Her words trailed off not knowing how the finish the sentence.
"I know. It's okay, I understand."
"No! It's not okay." She shook her head. "I… It's just not fair…"
"Sam" He interrupted her and lightly touched her hand. She turned to look at him.
"I'd like to ask you something, to know something."
"That day at my house… "Jack began carefully. "When you came to talk to me… I'm sorry we got interrupted…"
Sam looked down and swallowed.
"…what did you want to tell me?" He finished quietly both dreading and looking forward to her answer.
"Sir… Jack…" She gave a nervous laugh, her eyes darting around, focusing on anything but him. "You know, I haven't had that ten minutes sitting in my car on your drive way this time."
The corner of Jack's mouth moved up to form a small smile, acknowledging her joke about her nerves.
"I don't think you need that now." He said letting his thumb caress her hand where his rested on top of hers calming her. "There's no one but us here now. No one's going to interrupt this time."
She lifted her eyes back to his and Jack could see the uncertainty and quiet desperation reflected in their depths.
"You said there was a reason why you had second thoughts about your marriage." He said gently trying to help her along.
She took a deep breath. "Yeah, I…felt like I was making a big mistake. I knew I couldn't marry him."
"Because I didn't love him, not enough. I cared about him, but I wasn't in love with him." She replied, letting her eyes fall back to her lap again.
"Sounds to me like you did the right thing then. Marriage should be based on love."
His voice was calm and tender, and his thumb rubbing her hand was sending shivers up her spine.
"Still" His voice turned careful and apprehensive. "It doesn't explain how you ended up in my backyard. Why you came to see me…"
"We're friends, aren't we?" She said her eyes darting to his, suddenly looking scared and needing confirmation.
"Of course, always! Never doubt that." He confirmed his eyes serious. "But I don't think that was the only reason you came, was it?" He offered her a small encouraging smile.
"No." She whispered and closed her eyes. "It wasn't. There was another reason."
"Which was?" Jack softly prompted.
Sam took a deep shuddering breath and looked straight into his eyes. "You."
Jack's eyes widened and his heart skipped a beat but he didn't dare say anything nor look away from her intense gaze.
"Jack…" She began and turned her hand so she could hold his. "I don't want to make another mistake. I… I need to know how you feel about me."
He swallowed slowly, trying to find his voice.
"I care about you, Sam. I always have. A lot more than I'm supposed to."
Her eyes became glassy after his confession and she turned her head away, suddenly looking defeated.
"Sam, what is it? He asked alarmed, moving his free hand to cup her face.
"Jack" She pleaded. "You don't understand. You said yourself it's not enough. Caring, is not enough!" She blinked and one tear escaped despite her effort to stop it. She quickly wiped it away. "If that's all you feel for me then…"
"Shh, Sam, no no! That's not what I meant at all." He panicked and pulled her into a tight hug to reassure her.
"You know I'm not good with words. I never know what to say and I'm scared of making mistakes and getting hurt. Just like you or anyone else."
"I know, Jack. I'm sorry. I just really need to know how you feel." She said and pulled back enough to see his face again. "The truth, please, Jack."
He looked into her blue eyes lifted his hand to stroke an errant curl of hair back behind her ear and caress her neck.
"Not only do I care about you, Sam, but I also love you, very much." He said steadily and clearly. "I could not imagine my life without you."
Gradually a brilliant smile spread over her face and this time Sam let the tears fall freely.
She pulled him close again and buried her face in his neck.
"I love you too, Jack."
"Good." Was all he managed to reply without letting all the emotions currently churning inside him take over, so for a moment he just held her tight and let himself enjoy the feeling of finally having the woman he loved pressed against him.
A few minutes later they reluctantly separated a little without breaking the embrace, and looked at each other.
"Now what?" Sam asked still smiling.
"Now, we'll do whatever we want!" Jack answered with a typical grin of his and a wag of the eyebrows. "I came to fish and I caught my fish, so now I'm gonna enjoy it!"
Sam rolled her eyes.
"Jack! It's not that simple and you know it! What about the regs? You're still my commanding officer."
"I don't know, Sam. I really don't know." He sighed getting serious again. "But right now, with you here in my arms, I really don't care!"
"We'll figure something out, I promise. I'll resign, get a new job, call the President or whoever it takes, but I'm not letting you go anymore! Can't we just enjoy this moment for a while? Please?" He begged and before she had time to realize what was happening, he leaned in to kiss her.
If she hadn't already been sitting down her knees would have definitely wobbled and made her collapse. It felt like an electric current had passed through her body. She shivered and wound her arms tighter around his neck. Her body melted against his and she kissed him back with all the pent up desire she had stored deep in her heart.
A couple of minutes, an hour, or an eternity later they broke apart for air.
"Wow!" Sam gasped.
"You can say that again!" Jack grinned and swiftly kissed her again. "We're good together."
"Yes, we are, Jack." She smiled. "But we still need to deal with the regs."
"You don't give up, do you?" Jack laughed and stroked her hair. "Don't worry, Sam. We'll find a way to make this work. I'm in charge." He boastfully said and pulled her down to lie on top of him on the dock. "I can do anything I want!"
Sam giggled. "Within reason… Sir." and kissed the smirk right off his face.
- - - - -
As they had promised, Daniel and Teal'c returned from the ruins when the sun was setting. Both had their arms laden with several golden objects.
"Oh, man, I can't wait for Jack and Sam to see all this!" Daniel gushed. "I'm sure my catch is way bigger than any fish Jack has caught!"
"It was indeed fortunate we were able to translate the writings on the wall and find the hidden chamber in one of the tunnels." Teal'c said with a nod. "I'm sure O'Neill will be most impressed."
"Or not." Daniel stopped dead in his tracks causing one of the objects he was carrying to fall to the grass at his feet.
Teal'c raised his head and looked to where Daniel was staring his mouth hanging open, and saw Jack and Sam sleeping in each others arms on the dock.
With a slight raise of an eyebrow he observed the scene silently for a moment.
"It looks like O'Neill and Colonel Carter have found something better to do than fishing while we were away."
"It looks like Jack has caught the biggest fish of his life… It's about time!!"