General George Hammond (retired) looked at the two suits hanging on his wardrobe
door. One was a nice navy blue, a plain suit, with a tie. The second was also blue, but
more uncomfortable, yet more familiar.

He smiled and pulled down the navy suit. What was the point of being retired if he
couldn't be comfortable at weddings?


When the car pulled up outside the house where the wedding was to be held, Hammond
remained in his seat, looking up at the building now surrounded by parked cars. Though
the decorations on the house were small, it still looked much different than when he'd last
been here. That had been for a wake, now a wedding.

"Sir?" The driver prompted. Hammond nodded his thanks to the young man and climbed
out of the car. Hammond headed around to the back of the house.


Twenty minutes later Hammond took his seat in front of the thirty or so people gathered in
the garden. As he watched the ceremony unfold his eyes strayed to Daniel Jackson, the man
had looked nervous throughout, his eyes constantly straying to the woman who was his opposite
number in this. She in turn, kept giving him huge beaming smiles, making him shake his head
slightly and face front once more.

When the ceremony was over the chairs were cleared away and food was laid on. Hammond grabbed
himself a drink and some of the – really quite good – food and headed off in search of the happy couple.

He found them, unsurprisingly surrounded by well wishers, most of whom he knew. Flanking them
were the four people he had expected. He walked over to the four. Mitchell greeted him with a salute.

Hammond smiled, "I'm retired, Colonel."

"Of course, sir." Mitchell said, not quite losing the officer-on-deck posture.

"You'll have to excuse, Mitchell, George. He can't help it." Jack's voice drawled from behind Hammond.
The retired General turned.

Jack had somehow managed to extract himself from the congratulatory process, leaving Sam to speak
to the long queue of people, which she seemed to be doing admirably, looking genuinely pleased to speak
to each one, even if she did shoot looks of annoyance at the back of Jack's head every now and then.

They stood in silence, a small circle of people. Vala Mal Doran, Hammond noticed, was still giving Dr Jackson
huge smiles every time she caught him looking at her.

Apparently Jack had noticed this too, "So when are you two gonna-"

"Jack," Daniel said warningly.

"Daniel?" Jack asked, the feigned innocence fooling no one. "I was just going to ask Vala here when-"

"Took you long enough," Jackson muttered into his drink, cutting his friend off.

Jack gave a crooked smile and looked over his shoulder at Sam. "Well, I had to do somethin' before she
escapes to Atlantis."

"Escapes?" Sam asked, moving over to join them.

"So, Vala… you and Daniel?" Jack asked, earning himself a glare from Daniel and a nudge in the ribs
from Sam.

Sam turned to Hammond and hugged him before saying, "Its good to see you. I'm glad you could make it."

"Yeah," Jack interjected, "all that free time must be tiring. Seriously, if you ever want your old job back…"

"Nice try, Jack," Hammond said, smiling. He looked at Sam, "And I couldn't miss this, Sam. I'm actually
surprised you all managed to get time off together."

Sam nodded, "It was difficult. Luckily I know the boss," she looked up at Jack, whose attention appeared
to be elsewhere.

"I think they want us to go cut the cake, Sam," he said, his attention – as always – attuned to his favourite

"Jack, its our wedding, we say when we cut the cake," she pointed out.

"Okay, then I want us to go cut the cake, okay, Carter?"

She smiled up at him and took his arm as they headed off in the direction of the cake.

"She kept her name?" Vala asked.

"Indeed," Teal'c said, his expression one that Hammond could only describe as a smirk.

"Sam didn't want to unleash another Colonel O'Neill onto the universe." Daniel said, also smirking.

Hammond smiled as they all turned to watch the cutting of the cake. Looking at Sam and Jack, he couldn't recall
seeing them both so relaxed, so happy. His decision to help them had been a good one. Of course, it had taken
three years to get here, but after all, Hammond thought, accepting a slice of cake from his former second
in command, it was best not to dwell.