Disclaimer: Don't own anything, no money earned.
A/N: This is a Shipmas present for JackandSamAddict over at GW, the quote is her favorite and I tried to make a story out of it.
A/N2: hugs Becca for betaing this! B! You're awesome!
Love is like Pi
"Love is like Pi… natural, irrational and very important" ~Lisa Hoffman
Sam always loved snow, especially on Christmas Eve. For some reason it gave her comfort. In reality, it was the memory of her mother tucking her in a blanket in front of a fireplace and telling stories that gave her that warm feeling… but when her mother died, she transferred the sentiment to the snow.
She knew where Jack would be for Christmas. Where he always went - his cabin. So, in a spur of a moment, she booked a flight to Minnesota, rented a car… and there she was.
Though, if she wanted to be honest with herself, she'd admit the real reason for coming to this place laid in the anger from his refusal.
Almost six mouths have passed since that fishing trip. Jack transferred, she moved, they started addressing each other by first names. Well, Jack still called her Carter, but he gave such a soft tone to it, very… endearing. Of course, all the 'name calling' and other interesting conversation happened over the phone.
Two days ago Sam took a risk, a huge one at that. She invited Jack to spend Christmas with her in San Diego, in her brother's house. What did he do? The General had the grace to refuse, which made one blond Colonel very, very sad. He just HAD to go to the cabin.
After the initial disappointment has passed, anger took over.
She parked the car down the road, deciding not to give Jack a chance of hearing her, almost feeling like she would ambush him coming like this. Maybe she was, but it made no difference, she just wanted to clear the air once and for all.
They were always good at vague, even after the famous fishing trip and hundreds of phone calls, hints were dropped but nothing concrete, and that was turning into a problem for her, since she would very much liked to move this, this, this 'thing' to the next level or be done with it.
Walking down the road, Sam enjoyed the feel of snow flakes on her skin, hair and fingers. A smirk came across her face when she saw the house, but then she took in the whole scene. A few cars were parked in front, noise and laughter coming from inside.
She took a few uncertain steps, but then stopped. All the hints over these few months, all implications that they actually stood a chance at a relationship fell into water with the feminine voice ranging in her ears.
How long she stood there, Sam had no idea, but when the front door opened, she realized in horrible fascination that she's looking forward to seeing who exactly made the General so eager to come here. She couldn't help but wonder why her legs wouldn't take her somewhere to hide; she has done so in numerous situations far worse than this.
What came out surprised her. A girl, five years old, tops, brown curly hair, all dressed up in pink, right down to her fluffy sleepers. However, the thing that happened next surprised her more. She usually didn't have that effect on children.
"AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!" the girl's loud scream was followed by commotion from inside.
"Brooke?" a panicked woman's voice questioned.
Sam only winced at the piercing sound, but stayed frozen to her spot.
By the time the grownups showed up, Brooke had stopped screaming and started grinning widely. Apparently, it wasn't a scared scream, but a happy one.
"Mommy! Mommy!" she called out to the woman that appeared on the door, followed by two men, one of which was Jack. "Look, it's an angel!!!" she said joyfully, leaving the relative safety of the porch and running towards Sam.
"Brooke!" the man Sam didn't know yelled after the girl, but she paid no attention to him and in a matter of seconds found herself in 'the angels' arms.
For Sam's part, all she could think of while the little one ran was that the girl's going to catch a cold wearing nothing but a thin shirt and pants. Not to mention those fluffy monsters on her feet, so she instinctively picked her up.
"Hi," Brooke greeted with her brightest smile that showed one missing tooth.
Sam giggled, casting a look to Jack who assured the girls parents she was no threat. "Hi."
"Are you an angel?"
With all the snow flakes on her Sam supposed she could look like one, but it still made her giggle again. "No. I'm not." She thought she heard Jack say 'that's a matter of opinion," but it could have been just the wind playing with her mind.
The girl looked at her in wonder. "Are you sure?"
"Yes," she nodded. "Very sure."
Brooke took hold of Sam's shoulders, leaning over her back. "Huh," she returned to face Sam, "you ain't got no wings."
"I told you."
"Than who are you?"
Before she could answer, Jack jumped in. "That's Carter, and I suggest we go inside before we freeze our a…uhm, before we freeze," he rubbed his hands making his point.
Sam and Brook laughed at Jack's unfortunate slip while Sam handed the girl back to her mother.
"I'm Amy, and this is my husband, Mike," the woman pointed to her left.
"Nice to meet you, I'm Sam," she shook Mike's hand, and nodded to Amy.
As they walked back Jack tugged Sam by the arm telling her with the simple movement to slow down.
Feeling like an intruder Sam had no idea what to think, what to say. "Sir, I'm so sor…"
Jack raised an eyebrow 'a la Teal'c' and cut her off. "Sir? Hey let's not go back to the old habits, huh?"
She inhaled and released a sigh. "I mean Jack…"
"That's more like it," he grinned.
"I'm sorry, it's just hard when other people are there, and…" Sam had her eyes glued to the ground and it was obvious she grew more uncomfortable by the minute.
He took her hands into his, and it was the first time she actually looked at him. Jack seemed relaxed, happy even.
"I know," he said. "That's why we practiced in front of Daniel and Teal'c."
She smiled at his attempt to make her more comfortable, but still wanted to apologize for intruding, to explain why she'd come, but again Jack wouldn't let her.
"Look, Carter," he squeezed her hands noticing how cold they felt since she had no glows. "I would've invited you to come, but I didn't think you'd be ready…" unsteadily he looked back at the hose, front door still opened.
"Ready for what?"
"To meet my family," he finished awkwardly.
A family? Sam hazily remembered Daniel mentioning how Jack had a family, but it was so long ago. She had forgotten about it as the time passed and the four of them became each others family.
She noticed how nervous he seemed, and it almost brought tears to her eyes. After all these years, Jack still had no idea how much she wanted to be with him. How much she wanted to be in his life. "I didn't realize you actually had a large family, or a traditional family Christmas…none of us did. I didn't know," she said quietly.
"I wanted to tell you guys but… it never came up. We all had different plans for Christmas… And I'm not very good at…"
"Talking?" Sam finished for him.
She smiled warmly.
"You're here now… and if you don't mind," Jack pointed to the house, waiting with anticipation.
"Okay," she said with confidence she didn't feel.
Sam turned to him and all uncertainty left her. He would always be there for her. She nodded to his question, but neither moved. Of all clichés, Sam thought she liked this one the best. Snow falling, the warm feel from the house which was full and yet she felt as if they were the only people there, it was almost like magic.
Jack leaned slightly, still holding her eyes, smiling.
"Jonathan! Come on in side, mom wants to meet 'the angel,'" Amy yelled teasingly from inside, making them jump.
"Mom?" there was a hint of panic in Sam's voice, while Jack cursed his fate. If it wasn't Daniel interrupting or embarrassing, it had to be his baby sister.
"Oh, yeah. Dad too, and you already met Amy, she's the youngest," he said putting a hand over her shoulder, leading her back into the house, trying to calm her nerves.
"How many siblings do you have?"
"Four. Two sisters and two brothers," Jack gave her a side ways look and realized how nervous she must have felt. "Don't worry, you'll do fine," he assured. "Just don't slip with the Sir or the General, because they'll make fun of you."
Sam nodded. "Okay, anything else I need to know?" she sounded as if going to a battle.
"Oh, plenty… just not enough time to clue you in." Jack chuckled at the look on her face. "Come on," he led her inside and all conversation died as they entered.
There was an insane number of people in what now seemed a very small living room. Children of all ages seated on the floor, people looking at the newcomer with open curiosity.
"Hello darling," an elderly woman stood up, approaching Sam with a warm smile. "I'm Maggie, John's mother."
A small blush threatened to appear on Sam's fair skin, but she solemnly refused to feel embarrassed. Maggie gave her a small hug, and introduced her husband, Jack's father, and Sam saw from whom he inherited those expressional brown eyes.
The fact that she missed teasing Jack about his name gave him an idea of just how on edge she seemed to be. However, no matter how awkward Sam felt, he continued to watch her as she was introduced to all the people, bravely stepping into the unknown, because families were the unknown to her.
A place for Sam was made – with people moving about, children pulled up on laps, relatives scooting closer together - and, oh, the wonder, right next to him, for which Jack felt incredibly grateful to his family. Pretty soon they were joined by Brooke, who approached Sam and without words asked to be placed in her lap.
During the night, both of them felt euphoric. Jack didn't mind when his family began telling all the embarrassing things he's done since he's been a boy throughout his youth, because Sam laughed so hard. Like he never heard her laugh so freely. His mother even promised to show Sam very compromising pictures next time they saw each other, to which Jack grunted, seemingly offended.
As the night passed, Jack's two siblings and their families left for a hotel near by, while his youngest sister, her husband, Brook, and Jack and Amy's parents stayed. It was decided, with much protest from Sam that she would sleep in Jack's room, while he took the couch.
The only thing that still bothered Sam was the fact she hadn't had the alone moment with Jack. She still felt guilty for intruding and kept wondering why he didn't ask her what propelled her to come. Maybe he already knew. The motive might have been born out of anger, but it grew into something entirely different.
Sam woke up about 2 a.m. already feeling rested. The ability to sleep for short periods of time and actually get some quality rest out of it was something she developed working on the Stargate program, and something that saved up a lot of time. This time, it wasn't the excitement of a new experiment that kept her from sleeping, but a scent of Jack all around her. His shirt that he loaned her to sleep in, his pillow, his sheets… his room… very surreal, and thrilling.
She got up aiming for the kitchen and some water, but stopped when she heard a hushed voice coming from the living room. Moving in to investigate, Sam nearly released an 'awww' sound, seeing Jack with one hand over Brooke, reading what she supposed to be the Cinderella story. The scene was too cute for words.
"…and they lived happily ever after. The end," placing the book on his lap, Jack tilted his head a little and realized the child had fallen asleep. "You enjoyed the story?" he asked quietly.
It took Sam a second to take in that he spoke to her. "Yes," she smiled softly, and he finally turned, looking at her from an odd angle. "You gonna stand there all night?"
She snorted a little at his attempt to bring her closer, but still found herself sitting next to Jack, pulling a blanket over herself. "So? You do this often?"
"Brooke's sometimes afraid of the dark…and it helps if you read her a story," he said as if prepping her for the future.
The silence that followed didn't feel uncomfortable, not any more, never again. Neither wanted to look the other way, they were allowed to feel this, to be here, to look at each other without feeling like they're breaking some universal law.
"Why did you come?" Jack broke the silence, but the question wasn't one of reprimand, but more of the need to know, for sure, no misunderstandings, no vagueness. Clarity.
Sam never felt a question be as right as this one. "I came… to stay." She said, and searched his eyes for rejection but found none. It was their time, the right moment, a 'someday' that had finally arrived.
Jack leaned forward and Sam met him half way. An innocent kiss, light as a feather, but they felt it as if they were kissing each other their whole lives.
Brooke stirred a little, and the magic was over. "Does this mean I get to call you Aunt Sam?"
They looked at each other with amusement. Of course they would be interrupted, it was the nature of all things related to them, but for the first time, they didn't seem to mind.
"Yes, it does," Jack answered ruffling the girl's hair.
"Okay…" the sleepy voice replied. "Aunt Sam?"
The title seemed to agree with her. "Yes?"
"Can I have a baby sister for Christmas? I already asked mum and dad and they said no…" big puppy dog eyes pleaded with her. "But can't you and Uncle Jack give me a sister for Christmas so I would have someone to play with?"
Shocked, Sam looked at Jack in panic. "Uhm… ahm…" she tried but nothing coherent would come out.
Jack just chuckled. "Maybe for next Christmas."
"Yeah, yeah," Brooke returned to her pillow aka Jack's chest, "that's what ya all say…"
"Come on squirt, you're going to bed." He picked the girl up and carried her out of the room.
Within minutes Jack was back, settling on the couch with Sam. It didn't take them long to fall asleep in each others arms as they were talking and making plans for their future.
Peaceful, relaxed and comfortable they didn't hear a thing in the morning when the whole family gathered around them.