Tag to Line in the Sand

By StarnightSam

Summary: Jack/Sam – He promised always, he meant it.

Disclaimer: Not mine, even though I feel related. No money or infringement intended.

Jack watched at she stumbled out of bed. He could tell she was hurting. She stubbed her toe against the bed and let go a sting of expletives. He loved being in such an intimate setting with her. He didn't think he would ever get used to it or take it for granted. He'd waited a long, long time to be in bed with her, to watch over her. Even though he knew she'd hate that idea.

She stumbled into the bathroom, slowly. He could tell she was hurting. He'd watched her in pain over the years. He knew well the evidence. But he also knew unless she asked, he'd better stay where he was.

He waited for her return, thinking of all the things that had gone down and how lucky he was that she was on the mend. He had come so close to losing her this time. Maybe closer than ever, if you didn't count the times that she'd actually died.

He just knew that his heart had stopped when Daniel had called his office in DC and left that message with his secretary. He'd been in a meeting with the Joint Chiefs and the President. His secretary had interrupted the meeting. And Jack knew the minute he'd walked in, that something was wrong. Bad wrong. He knew too it was Sam. He didn't start breathing until he talked to Daniel.

He looked at the clock by the bed. She'd been in the bathroom for over 20 minutes. Something was wrong. What should he do?

He got out of bed wearing nothing, the way he loved to sleep now days, even if he couldn't make love to her. He loved the feel of her skin on his naked body.

He waited for a short while outside the bathroom, just listening. He could hear her softly crying. Something Sam never did. All Jack could think was--bad. Before he thought, he burst through the doors and stopped as suddenly as he'd entered.

She sat on the floor, legs spread out over the floor, her back leaning against the tub. Tears were streaming down her face. She looked up as he entered and their eyes locked. That's what had stopped Jack dead in his tracks. She looks so.. .. unlike Sam. She actually looked vulnerable, maybe even scared.

"Baby, what's wrong?" Jack asked softly as if she was an infant as he lowered his lanky body to the floor and reached for her face, kissed her on the forehead and sat beside her. He wrapped his arm around her shoulders and waited for her to answer.

"I.. uh…." More crying and tears followed. He waited. Sam looked up at him again, this time with a look of adoration. "You always know just when to leave me alone and just when I need you the most."

His eyes softened and his look changed from fear to one of total love. "I do?"

"Yes." She whispered. The look she had for Jack was one of total worship. It always amazed her how well he knew her. She studied his expression for a few minutes saying nothing, just reading his face.

"I can't get up. It hurts too much to move," she finally admitted. He watched as her expression changed yet again. This one was familiar. It said with no words how much she adored him and how much she needed him. Something she'd never let anyone know before him.

"I've gotcha, Sam. Always."

End

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