Spoilers: Well season ten's 'unending' springs to mind.
A/N: I can't believe I did this. I actually wrote a fic about a season ten episode, which isn't supposed to exist in my mind seeing as for me the show ended with the team sitting together by Jack's pond.
I haven't actually seen the episode so there may be some errors here, but we'll call it artistic licence : )
This idea actually sprang from some of the episode tags I've read lately and from some of the vids I accidentally came across on You Tube. I've decided I might actually watch this episode, though not the end, I don't like seeing Mitchell walk through that 'gate.
Oh and I refuse to believe that Jack and Sam are not together after season eight, so I must have been having a moment when I was forced to write this. Now maybe it'll leave me alone.
Revelations of a Lifetime
Episode tag to season ten's 'Unending'
Jack watched her as she sat in the large lounge chair reading some geeky science thing to do with the Asgard technology on the 'Odyssey.' She'd printed it out from the ship's computers so she could study it while SG-1 were on a short vacation. He would never have let her if he'd known, but she failed to mention it, knowing full well he would have forbidden it – at least she hadn't tried to sneak her laptop over this time.
Daniel had seated himself on one end of the couch, gazing into the fire that crackled away merrily, as if lost in thought. Teal'c must have gone to the bathroom or something Jack thought as he sat himself down on the opposite end of the couch. Hank and SG-1 had just returned on the 'Odyssey' with a bizarre tail – even for them – of time bubble thingies where apparently they had lived fifty years alone together on the ship. He had managed to convince his old team and closest friends to come up to the cabin with him for a few days.
Sam shifted in her seat, drawing both her legs up under herself but didn't remove her eyes from the paper. He continued to watch her out of the corner of his eye; he was well practiced at it. The firelight cast an orange shimmering hue over her features, making her eyes shimmer, the reading lamp behind lighting up her blonde hair. God she was beautiful! He found himself wondering what she would have looked like in fifty years. Teal'c, who was the only one with any memory of it, looked the same as ever except for that one stipe of silver along the side of his head. Jack had noticed the difference in Teal'c's behaviour, he was much more talkative and he smiled way more than he used to. When they'd arrived at the cabin, Jack came out to greet them and help with their gear, he was a little taken aback by the intense gaze Teal'c held on him, then found himself crushed in a Jaffa bear hug. When Teal'c finally released him he planted his hands on his shoulders and murmured, "It is good to see you again my brother." If Jack was actually capable of blushing, he might have at Teal'c's heart felt intonation, but then Jack figured for Teal'c it had been fifty years since they'd seen each other.
His thoughts lead to the inevitable, what had happened between his friends while they were stuck on that ship? Fifty years is a long time to live in close quarters with six people, only two of which were women. He knew it was more than likely Sam had hooked up with one of them. He shook his head to clear his mind of the thoughts as his gut clenched at the images his treacherous mind assailed him with. Sam and Mitchell; Sam and Daniel; Sam and…
"Come up with any profound answers as to the nature of the universe yet Daniel?" He asked sarcastically.
Daniel blinked, startled and turned his eyes to Jack, "What?"
Jack smirked, "Nothin'"
"You've been staring into the ire for ten minutes Daniel." Sam said, including herself in the conversation.
"Oh, I was just thinking you know, about what Teal'c's told us about the time dilation bubble. It's, well, amazing I guess. We lived fifty years we have no memory of."
"Well technically we never actually lived those fifty years, only Teal'c did." Sam replied.
Jack sat back, content to listen to Carter and Daniel bandy back and forth about something, it was like old times, he'd missed it.
Teal'c's voice boomed over to them from the kitchen. "Would anyone wish for a hot beverage?"
The three friends glanced at each other in astonishment before answering.
"Nah I'm good T'" Came Jack's reply as he held up his bottle of Guinness.
"No thanks." Said Daniel.
Sam spoke rather hesitantly, Teal'c had never made coffees and things before "Thanks Teal'c, I'll have a…"
"Hot Chocolate." Teal'c finished for her.
"Ah, yeah." Sam confirmed. She glanced over at General O'Neill and he raised an eyebrow at her. She shrugged and returned to her technological notes.
A few minutes later Teal'c strode into the living room carrying a tray laden with two mugs - Teal'c never used to drink hot drinks Jack thought to himself – and a packet of Sam's favourite chocolate biscuits. Jack had brought them especially for her. He set Sam's drink and biscuits down on the small lamp table next to her.
"Thanks Teal'c." She said, "These are my favourites." She glanced over at Jack and gave him an appreciative smile, letting him know that she knew he had bought them. He found himself unable to stop the smirk as that familiar warm feeling infused his chest.
Jack watched Teal'c look around as if deciding where to sit and was blindsided when Teal'c took a position on the floor…directly in front of Sam!…leaning his back on Sam's chair! Her eyes shifted up to momentarily settle on the back of Teal'c's head before she continued reading non-plussed. What the hell?! Jack thought.
Sam's face screwed up, "Teal'c I don't suppose you can help with this stuff?"
Teal'c shifted his position enough so that he could look at her over his shoulder. "I cannot."
"Because you're not supposed to or…?" Sam asked good naturedly, a small smile touching her lips.
"I have not the knowledge ColonelCarter." He answered.
"So you didn't pick anything up over the fifty years I was working on this?"
"You did not allow any one to enter the laboratory and disturb your work, even General Landry was forbidden from entering." Teal'c was determined that he would never divulge important information, but he had decided that there were some things that really didn't matter in the grander scheme of things. The truth was carrying these memories was a heavy burden for Teal'c and discussing these sorts of trivial matters with his friends helped ease that burden considerably.
Sam smirked at him, "I was sulking then was I?"
Teal'c grinned widely at her, shocking his friends, "Indeed." He rumbled, before changing position again to lean comfortably on Sam's chair.
Sam held her hot chocolate in one hand and with her eyes still on her work she reached over with the other to take a biscuit. Teal'c reached up, over his shoulder and did the same; both friends dunking their biscuit in their hot drink and then proceeding to suck the melted chocolate off before repeating their actions.
Jack and Daniel spared an astonished glance at each other before turning their regard back to Sam and Teal'c. Sam felt their eyes on her and looked up, creasing her eyebrows at them with a 'What?' expression. Jack tilted his head indicating Teal'c and she leaned over a little so she could see him better. She nearly choked on her biscuit as she watched Teal'c not only eating a chocolate biscuit, but eating it in the same way she does.
"So Teal'c, enjoyin' those biscuits are ya?" Jack queried.
Teal'c looked up taking in the surprise on the faces of his friends, "Indeed, ColonelCarter and I spent many evenings enjoying hot chocolate and various deserts. I was dubious at first O'Neill, however I was soon convinced of the merits of 'dunking'"
Sam giggled, she couldn't help it and Teal'c shot her another smile, affection lighting his face. Teal'c had looked at her like that before, they were very close Teal'c and Sam especially after Daniel ascended, but Jack thought it was somehow more evident now.
Jack frowned, he thought maybe he just had an answer to his earlier, disturbing musings. His chest tightened until it hurt.
"Makes sense, we probably spent a lot of time together over the fifty years. Wow Teal'c, you must know things about us that we don't know about ourselves," Daniel said excitedly. "I mean you watched us grow old and…hey is there anything we should know about Mitchell and Vala?" He smiled mischievously; Jack was rubbing off on him.
"Indeed DanielJackson, we spent much of our days in one another's company, however," Teal'c took on a sad expression that did not go unnoticed by the others. "ColonelMitchell quickly became frustrated and eventually withdrew himself from our companionship. General Landry grew old and died when his natural lifespan came to an end."
No one spoke at Teal'c's words, they couldn't even fathom what their poor friend had gone through and he remembered it.
Teal'c glanced at Jack and allowed a slight smirk to twitch at his lip, "ColonelCarter and I spent much of our days together." He noted the sudden tension in Jack's eyes and felt a small measure of satisfaction; he had a plan for his friend.
"What about me?" Daniel said in a hurt tone.
"That I cannot discuss." Teal'c said with finality and went back to dunking another biscuit.
Daniel scowled at him.
Jack's gaze shifted from Teal'c to Carter and he found her studying the back of Teal'c head as if he were a piece of alien technology, she was trying to work something out. Her gaze shifted to his as she sensed his eyes on her, he knew she could always feel it when he looked at her. He registered the shocked expression on her face when he stood abruptly. He couldn't sit here right now and watch Teal'c sitting so close to her when he was certain now that something had happened between them. Carter might not remember it but Teal'c sure as hell did.
He clamped down on the insane jealousy and sense of betrayal he was feeling as he stalked to his bedroom, he had no right, he had no claim on her. He hadn't done anything to advance their relationship since that first trip to the cabin and worse he'd accepted the position in Washington. A position that not only took him away from her but kept them both in the same chain of command. He knew though that he could have gotten around that if he'd tried but he hadn't, he was a coward and Carter was…Carter…she deserved so much better then him. There was no way she could feel for him anything remotely close to what he felt for her. So he'd left, hoping the distance would help him get over it. What a fool, all the distance had done was make him long for her even more. At least when they worked together, he could see her everyday; see her smile; hear her lilting voice as she techno-babbled; watch her eat her blue Jell-O. So the four original members of SG-1 had gotten together practically every day off they had. Jack was surprised when, once he'd told them he couldn't get away from Washington, they'd turned up at his house. So whenever they all had leave at the same time and he had made sure they always did, there were perks to his position after all, they went down to the cabin. He missed them all, but really he just so desperately wanted to see her. She had been fairly cool toward him since he went to Washington, but she always came. He wondered now if it was just to hang out with Daniel and Teal'c that she came along.
He heard the footsteps outside the door, knew who they belonged to before the nock came. "O'Neill, may I enter." Came Teal'c's rumble from the other side.
Jack sighed and ran his hands through his hair before scrubbing at his face. This was gonna be the 'may I have your blessing to woo Carter' speech he just knew it.
"Yeah Teal'c, come in." He said and watched Teal'c step through the door and close it behind him.
"What can I do for you Teal'c?" He asked.
"I wish to discuss ColonelCarter."
Here we go! Jack closed his eyes for a moment. "Look Teal'c, it's really none of my business…"
"O'Neill," Teal'c interrupted. "I have come to know ColonelCarter extremely well over the time we spent aboard the Odyssey together…"
"Yeah I got that."
"You still harbour strong romantic feelings for her." It was a statement.
Jack couldn't believe they were having this conversation, "Teal'c listen, you're my friend ok and Carter…look just whatever makes you happy is fine by me…I'll even come to the wedding." He tried to smirk but was pretty sure he didn't pull it off.
"I believe you have misunderstood our relationship during that time O'Neill." Jack looked at him confused. "I confess, this was my intention. However I did not lie to you O'Neill. I cannot reveal much, but whilst the others either shunned company or sought the company of others, ColonelCarter and I were left together."
"Teal'c, buddy, what are you trying to tell me here?"
"ColonelCarter divulged to me that she was writing letters." Teal'c reached into his pocket and carefully withdrew some folded pieces of paper. He held them almost reverently. "I took these from her quarters without her knowledge for I knew she would not have allowed it. There were many, many more O'Neill. Many hundreds in fact. I regret that I invaded ColonelCarter's privacy in this way, however she had allowed me to read some of them over the years, and I believe perhaps I am doing her a service. They are all addressed to you O'Neill. One is from twenty years into our confinement, the other written only a few days before the end." He handed them carefully over to Jack. "ColonelCarter is my sister O'Neill, as of my own blood. I can no longer stand by and allow her heart-ache to continue. Read them O'Neill and perhaps you can decide on a course of action." He bowed slightly and left the room, the door clicking quietly as he shut it.
Jack let his eyes fall to the two papers held gently in his hand. One of them still looked fairly crisp; the other was browning around the edges and felt thin and fragile. Each folded letter had 'Major General Jack O'Neill' scrawled on them in Carter's familiar writing.
He sat down heavily on the bed, opening the older looking letter, he began to read.
'Jack!' I bet you never knew that I always called you that in my head. I never said it out loud though did I? I wish I had. But then you would probably never have let me.
It's been twenty years on this godforsaken ship now. Twenty years, one month, five days, 8 hours and twenty seven minutes since I last saw you.
I haven't written to you in a few days I know. Not much has changed here. I'm still playing my Cello, I'm pretty good you know.
God I miss you! I was so stupid Jack for so long, I should never have let you go to Washington, I should never have let you leave. But then who was I to take away such a career opportunity for you. No! I should have quit, quit everything, I should have followed you to Washington and kissed you and begged you to let me stay.
But I didn't because I was scared, afraid you would never speak to me again, that things would become so uncomfortable for you that you couldn't stand to have me around anymore, and that just was not an acceptable risk for me. Because I guess I never really knew, if you loved me, at least not in the way I loved you, and now I'll never know.
And I so much wish you were here. I'm grateful for Daniel and Teal'c, but I can't shake this empty pit in my stomach where you should be.
Am I pathetic Jack? Pining for one man, a man that was never mine, for twenty years, no thirty?
Did I tell you Hank died? He grew old Jack, we all are, except maybe Teal'c. I was with him. It hurt.
They all say they don't blame me, but they can't blame me more than I blame myself. It's my fault we're stuck here, without you. I lock myself up in the lab every day trying to figure a way out of this. Teal'c comes by every meal time to make me eat, just like you used to remember. He says you would be 'most displeased' if he didn't. Sometimes he makes me take the whole day off.
I told Teal'c about these letters the other day, showed him some. He says he misses Ishta and Ry'ac. Teal'c is suffering too. I'm so selfish, feeling sorry for myself.
I synthesised a beer omelette yesterday. It wasn't the same, it didn't taste right. I wish you would make me your world famous omelette Jack.
I miss your handsome face and those cheeky smirks. I remember each and every one of them, so rare, and rarer still the full smile from you. I miss your gravelly voice, sometimes I think I can hear it. I used to long for the times you would say my given name in that gruff voice of yours. You only ever said it when you thought I might die. But now, I'd give anything just to hear you say 'Carter' again – who'd a thunk it?
I wish I had told you, bit the bullet and spilled the beans (too cliché Jack?), "I love you Jack." I should have said. "I'm in love with you, I have been all along." That's what I should have said. Maybe you would have tried to let me down easy or maybe you would have kissed me.
So I'll say it now – Twenty years later - I'm still in love with you and I wish I could have known what it was like to kiss you and for you to kiss me back.
I dream sometimes that we're at you're cabin in Minnesota, sitting by the fire with your arms around me. Or sometimes your on the ship, you walk into my room and cup my cheeks in your glorious hands and you kiss me.
I look forward to sleeping.
Jack sat frozen to the bed. He swallowed convulsively at the giant fist that had lodged itself in his throat as he read the letter. She said she loved him, that she was in love with him…Carter…Sam! Twenty years on that ship and she was still in love with him. He smirked a little as his eyes fixed on a few words – she thought he was handsome. His smile faded as his attention shifted to the paper itself. Several words were blurred where the ink had run slightly as if…tears!
Jack carefully folded the old paper and with a deep breath opened the next letter, he noticed immediately that the writing itself was messier, less controlled; there were no ink blots though. He read.
I can't play the Cello anymore, my fingers won't do what they're told. What would you say, oh yes, Dang! or Doh!
I'm old Jack and I still miss you every day. I've lived with this whole in my chest so long I don't remember what it was like not to have it.
You know I thought after so many years I would forget your face. A part of me hoped I would another part dreaded it. But I haven't forgotten Jack. I can still see your face as if it were yesterday. I know every line, every expression, every light in your eye. I remember your weak spot – the scar on your eyebrow. I always wanted to run a finger over it.
I remember that adorable cleft between your eyebrow and the way it would deepen when you scowled at me. I wonder what you would say if I told you how much I loved it when you scowled. I remember the dimples in your cheeks and the way they too would deepen when you smiled, I loved that even more. I remember that lopsided cocky smirk you would get sometimes, God! I always wished you would smile more.
I did it Jack.
I won't bore you with the details but I finally found a way to send someone back, so maybe we can stop this from happening.
It's going to have to be Teal'c, the rest of us are too old now. I feel bad for him, how can he and Daniel forgive me so easily?
You should see us Jack! I can imagine how you would tease Daniel if you could see him now, it makes me laugh.
Writing is becoming hard for me Jack. But it doesn't matter, if my plan works, I'll be releasing us from this bubble in a couple of days and we'll all get blown up, except for Teal'c who'll be going back.
I don't care, I've had enough. I want to see you again so badly, if it works, maybe I'll summon the courage to kiss you. If it doesn't, I'll be dead and maybe this pain in my chest will go away.
And maybe I'll see you in heaven some day.
I love you.
Hell! Jack dropped his hands into his lap and stared out of the window, into the dark night. These letters…and Teal'c said she wrote more, lots more. All to him. They weren't for him though, she'd never intended him to see them, which Jack knew was the only reason she could be so explicit in them. It was her way of coping. He stood and walked over to the window, gazing up at the stars twinkling away in the clear night sky. Fifty years and she'd never forgotten him, fifty years and she'd never hooked up with any of the others even though he was sure Mitchell had a bit of a crush on her. Fifty years and she still claimed to be in love with him.
The reality hit him like a staff blast and he nearly fell to his knees from the intensity of it. She did love him like he loved her, he'd known for a long time now that he would never lover any one else, and Sam…sitting in his Minnesota living room right now was as committed to him as any married couple could be. And she had no idea how he felt for her. Jack O'Neill was a man of action, and, he decided, it was high time he acted. Right. God. Damn. Now.
He hid the letters in the safest and most secure place he could find and went to find her.
Jack strode purposely into the living area; he was a man on a mission. He didn't even care that Teal'c and Daniel were here. He stopped short. Where were Teal'c and Daniel? Sam was still seated on the lounge chair, though her legs were now back on the floor, but the other two were gone.
He stepped by the couch, "Carter…" His voice crackled and he had to clear his throat. "Carter, where are the guys?"
She looked up at him and furrowed her eyebrows, "Um, sir, didn't you…Teal'c said you asked him and Daniel to head into town for some urgent supplies."
"At this time of night?" Jack asked incredulously.
"That's what I said sir, but Teal'c insisted." She stood up, a look of worry on her face. "Maybe I should call Daniel's cell."
Teal'c, the sly son of a…a smile spread across his face. "No Carter, the kids are all grown up now, they can take care of themselves.
"Sir?" Her confusion written all over her face and in her large eyes.
Jack's smile faded as his heart rate shot up at the thought of what he was about to do.
He gazed at her for a long moment with the most tender eyes she'd ever seen, his whole face suddenly radiated affection and she couldn't have looked away if she'd wanted to, and she didn't.
He moved toward her, she stood paralysed. When he came within a foot of her, he raised his hands and cupped her smooth cheeks. His right thumb grazed her lips and they parted with her hitched breath. He closed the rest of the distance, feeling her soft body against his and kissed her.
He pored everything he felt for her into that long, deep kiss and she responded, running her hands up the sides of his torso.
When there lips eventually parted, he didn't release her. He laid his forehead against hers, gazing into her eyes which seemed a deeper blue than usual and felt the rapid rise and fall of her breasts against his chest.
"Sam," He said huskily. "I love you."
She blinked and he saw her eyes blur for a moment before the biggest and brightest Carter smile spread slowly across her face. She moved her own hands to mirror his, cupping his rough cheeks. "I love you too Jack." She said breathlessly.
"Yeah?" He said giving her that lopsided smirk.
Her eyes glittered, "Yeah."
"Jack?" His heart constricted in the sweetest pain at the sound of his name on her lips.
"Are you going to kiss me again?"
"I was thinkin' 'bout it."
"Sam." He just had to get her to keep saying it.
"Kiss me again."
"Why yes Ma'am," He drawled, "On one condition."
Her brows drew together, "What?"
He leant in to whisper in her ear, "Say it again?"
She shivered at the feeling of his breath tickling her ear, he felt it. "What?"
"Say my name."
He felt the smile against his cheek, and her lips tilted up to get closer to his own ear, "Jack." She breathed.
It was the sexiest damn thing he'd ever heard in his life.
He kissed her. They slowly sank to the floor tangled in each others limbs and lips still locked and he vowed right there that he would never ever stop kissing her, ever.
A/N: Please review and let me know what you think, I'm off to make a huge batch of blue Jell-O for all of you. Hmm, I'll make some red too. Thanks for reading!!