From a self-confessed 5-Things addict: 5 Kisses Sam had under the Mistletoe
Thanks to for the speedy beta! (I figured I didn't need to put any categories since it's all about kissing.*g* )
Five Kisses under the Mistletoe
1. It wasn't actually mistletoe, per se, but it was green and had berries and was hanging over their heads. Since they'd just slid down the bluff in a graceless Jack-and-Jill imitation, Jack figured he could always blame his actions on a concussion. He'd gotten away with far flimsier excuses in the past. It wasn't like Carter was rushing to get off him either.
In fact, she wasn't moving at all. And since she was looking right at him, Jack was pretty sure she wasn't unconscious. So this could only play out one of two ways. Either she was going to bring that knee that was currently resting between his thighs just high enough to let him know he was completely out of line before she rolled off and stalked away. Or she would kiss him back. He was seriously hoping for option two as he brushed his fingers along her cheek and traced the top of her ear.
There was the tiniest moment of hesitation before Carter leaned down and brought her lips to his. It was slow and sweet and everything Jack had imagined it would be. And when she pulled back slightly, it was too soon.
"Merry Christmas," she breathed against his cheek before rolling off and getting to her feet. He could hear Daniel's voice calling to find out if they were okay. Jack reached up and broke off a piece from the branch above his head and tucked it in his pocket for luck.
2. It was Jonas' questions about the Earth's holiday traditions that reminded Sam again how much she missed Daniel.
Teal'c had taken Jonas under his wing like a mother goose with her gosling and was explaining the symbolism behind the decorations, the tree, and the Holy family. Teal'c had always loved the rituals behind the different religious traditions of Earth and Sam figured that being able to freely and openly practice them makes him feel connected to his son and his people.
She's leaning against the door frame watching Cassie trying to goad the Colonel into helping her put the star on the top of the tree when Jonas stops beside her.
"Major," he greets her. "I noticed that you're standing under the mistletoe. Teal'c was just telling me-"
She kisses him chastely on the cheek like an old acquaintance after a long separation and it leaves him standing there with his mouth open in an 'O' of surprise. It reminds her of the time she'd kissed Daniel under the mistletoe on that first Christmas they were together as SG-1. She'd wondered then if Daniel had been more shocked by the impromptu kiss, or if it was his inclusion in their team's last minute celebration at Janet's house that had thrown him off guard after so many years of not celebrating at all.
Sam smiles. "It's okay," she reassures Jonas when he finally blinks away the look of surprise. "It's tradition, after all."
3. If she would have known that it would have been his last Christmas, Sam might have held the embrace just a little bit tighter. She might have savored the feel of her father's rough cheek against her own just a little bit longer. She might have made it up to Mark's place for the holidays just a little bit sooner.
Instead, she'd stayed at work until the last minute, telling her father to go on ahead. She'd take the first flight out in the morning and catch up with him later.
Looking back, she thinks that he must have known on some level that it would be his last visit. She had usually been the one to suggest the visits to San Francisco, but this time it was Jacob who brought it up. When he opened the front door at her quiet knock, he'd looked almost wistful as he took her carry-on bag from her hand.
Pointing up at the greenery hanging above them from the front hall light, he'd asked, "You got a kiss for the old man?"
She should have held him tighter.
4. Sam knew she was in trouble when Vala caught her eye and gave her a wink. It was Vala's hands that took her completely by surprise. The one on her shoulder drawing her in while the one on her neck pulled her close. Or maybe it was her lips that made her pull in a breath, the ones with the bubble gum lip gloss pressing against her own delicately at first and then with purpose. No, it was definitely her own mouth that gave her a shock when it started kissing back. Or her own hands finding their way to Vala's cheek and chin.
This probably wasn't what Cam had in mind when he suggested that a Christmas party would be a good team-building exercise.
Somewhere in the background she heard Daniel's "Um. Okay. That's not what I pictured when Teal'c said we needed mistletoe at the party." She could hear him stammer and she knew he would be blushing. She felt Vala grin.
The sound of glass shattering as it hit her kitchen floor broke the kiss. Sam turned to see Jack standing open -mouthed and open-handed, the remnants of his beer bottle scattered around his feet. After sending a silent 'thank you' to Vala, Sam shot him a cheeky grin.
Jack coughed and recovered his voice. "Well that was worth the flight from DC."
5. Once Jack retired, he finally got around to insulating the cabin so it could be used year-round. This was the first year they were going to be able to spend time there at Christmas. He'd thrown the battered shoe box in the back seat of the truck on a whim.
Sam had grabbed it when she was unloading their provisions and brought it inside, not paying it much attention until she accidentally knocked the lid loose when she set it on the table. The glitter and macaroni caught her eye and, upon further scrutiny, she realizes that the box is full of homemade decorations, all with the signature touches made famous by preschoolers and elementary students everywhere.
She's about to carefully close the lid when Jack walks into the room, arms laden with kindling for the fire.
"Oh good, you brought that in."
"Sorry. I didn't mean to look. The lid came off." She feels she needs to apologize for snooping in such a personal piece of his past. There's always been that unspoken boundary between them when it came to prior loves and losses.
Jack takes the box and brings it under the brighter lights in the kitchen. He pulls a Popsicle-stick Christmas tree out of the tangle of decorations and holds it up, dangling it by a knot of golden thread for her inspection. "It's going to be pretty hard to decorate the tree with your eyes closed."
She's never pegged him as the sentimental type, but from the taped and scuffed condition of the box, she can see that it hasn't spent the last twelve years sitting safely in the back of a closet. It's been taken out and shuffled through, unpacked and repacked, moved from house to temporary apartment to house again. It's been cherished.
"I didn't realize we were decorating," she answers. Sam can't remember ever seeing decorations around Jack's house over the years. Mind you, there had been many years where SG-1 had spent the time running up to the holidays off-world or otherwise too occupied to find time for more than a cursory celebration in somebody's lab or office with a meager selection of commissary snacks.
Jack returns the stick tree to the box. "I figured with the gang coming up here for a visit we could, I don't know," he waves an arm like a game show host revealing the grand prize. "Spruce the place up a bit? Teal'c always did like the Christmas bling." He rummages some more until he finds what he's looking for and holds it up with a triumphant smile.
At first Sam isn't sure what he's trying to show her, but from the expectant look on his face, she thinks she might be forgetting something important. The leaves are shriveled and browned and the three remaining berries could be miniature raisins for all she knows. Then something clicks and she remembers back to a time when they were Colonel and Major, instead of Jack and Sam. The snow-filled gully on a planet far, far away. She can't believe he kept it. Part of her appreciates the sentiment, but another part of her is incredulous.
"I can't believe you brought that back," she exclaims. "Do you realize the potential bio-hazard you've been carrying around? Of all people, you should-"
Jacks cuts her off with a kiss. If he intended to hold the branch over their heads in tradition, it's soon forgotten when she gives in and kisses him back. She barely has the presence of mind to take the shoe box from his hand and shove it on to the table before he's got his hands through her hair and she's pulling him closer. The last of the berries falls off the twig when it hits the floor, but neither of them notices.