Stargate SG1 is somebody else's, probably MGM/Gekko Corp/Sci-fi, and I freely admit that whoever's it is, I'm borrowing their show and they retain all rights, etc

Author's Note: Sam/Jack so please turn away now if you're not that way inclined. It does contain mild spoilers for the first eight seasons of SG1 as each chapter is a short scene from each year.

In the Moonlight

Year One

There was nothing like the sound of the night; the quiet and the hush of the darkness that permeated the air. The way the silence was underscored by nature; the quiet ripples of water, the rustle of shivering leaves in the trees; the flurry of a passing creature through the grass.

Jack O'Neill watched the dark with a solemn intensity from his position just outside the camp the team had made earlier. The log wasn't comfortable but it was better than the ground and its position by an old weathered tree allowed him to fade into the scenery. He tugged his cap down further over his brown hair and let his gaze travel over the clearing with a practiced eye.

There was no sign of trouble.

Nothing stirred.

He shifted imperceptibly trying to ease the ache that had settled into his left buttock and checked the time. The figures glowed luminously up at him. Another couple of hours and his watch would be over. He looked towards where Captain Samantha Carter slept. There was only the hunched lump of a sleeping bag visible next to another he knew belonged to Daniel Jackson. Teal'c was in a meditative state by their side. Sam would relieve him and she would be a few minutes early, she always was. He almost smiled.

The young blonde Air Force Captain had proven to be an asset to the team; brilliant in a way only a super-genius could be, a good soldier, a compassionate friend and one helluva sexy woman…he cut the thought off abruptly.

He had no right going down that road, Jack reminded himself briskly. He was her commanding officer. It wasn't as though he hadn't always been aware of the fact that Carter was an attractive woman. Heck, he'd noticed the moment she'd walked into the briefing room; the blue dress uniform actually enhanced everything about her instead of cloaking her in anonymity. There had been a multitude of moments since then that had driven it home to him; a certain Mongolian dress, her lips on his when she had been under the influence of an alien virus, the way his belly had tightened when she had examined him after the sarcophagus had eliminated Hathor's handiwork, the feel of her body snuggled up to him in a cave of ice. The last was the moment that lingered in his memory; it was the most recent.

It was probably also the reason why he had found himself thinking about Carter more than he should. They had been stuck together alone for so long while they had tried to dig out the DHD, to find a way home little realising that they were already on Earth. It was an experience that had bonded them. Carter had been incredible; she had tirelessly worked to get them home; patched him up and kept him alive even though she had been scared. He couldn't help but admire her for that. And how was he supposed to ignore how hot she was when she snuggled up to him even if it was to keep them both warm and alive? Even the BDUs couldn't disguise her trim figure; the womanly curves, the legs that went on forever.

Jack swore under his breath and got to his feet. He should do a perimeter check, he thought determinedly pushing his less than regulation thoughts about Carter out of his mind. He silently made his way through the trees, checking for any signs that someone was creeping up on them; spying on them. He moved stealthily, ensuring his clothes didn't catch on branches; that his feet didn't snap any twigs. His training allowed him to make the circuit without disturbing a single thing. The log beckoned and he stopped as he realised Carter sat there waiting.

He didn't mask his approach and the sound of his boots walking over the mossy forest floor had her turning toward him. He sat down beside her, careful to keep an appropriate distance between them. He checked his watch.

'You're early.' Jack noted in a low voice.

Sam shrugged easily and pointed up at the sky. 'Isn't it incredible?'

Jack looked up. The purple was dotted with bright pinpricks of stars in constellations that differed wildly from Earth. No Big Dipper or Orion's Belt. The stars were spread out in an altogether different pattern that stirred the astronomer in Jack. The stars were not the main attraction though as unusual as they were. The planet had two moons and they loomed closely in the sky; the first an orangey-red that shimmered and the second, a white circle. They were definitely not in Kansas anymore.

He glanced toward Carter. She was staring up at the moons captivated and the moonlight streamed down on her as though in recognition of her adoration, turning her messy blonde hair to a rumpled gold, her pale skin to a luminous cream and her eyes, a fathomless deep blue. For a moment, he forgot to breathe.

Sam turned suddenly to smile at him ruefully. 'Sorry, sir.'

'Don't apologise, Captain.' Jack waved her words away. He picked out a cluster of stars in the left of the night sky. 'Those kind of remind me of a small dog.'

'Really?' Sam peered into the distance. 'It looks more like a bear.'

'A bear?' He shook his head. 'No way. See the two on the right are the paws, and those two at the top are ears and…' he stopped as he realised she was smiling at him indulgently. He pulled a face at her obvious amusement.

'Really, sir.' Sam said teasingly. 'Go on. I'm beginning to see the dog.'

'Funny, Carter.' Jack muttered, poking her arm gently. 'Very funny.'

She kept on smiling and he found his own lips curving upwards in response. She'd been so formal with him when they had first started working together that he would never have imagined she would have loosened up enough to tease him. He was pleased that she felt she could. They fell into a companionable silence.

Jack refused to over-think it; refused to examine why it mattered to him more closely. He simply enjoyed the moment and how right it felt, sitting under the stars in the moonlight with Carter at his side.

To be continued in Year Two