Summary: Two friends happen to meet up in front of a movie screen
Rating: PG13
Author: wanderingsmith
Disclaimer: I ain't got no money, and nobody'd be daft enough to pay me for this.

AN: This is part of a verse that I am not posting to fanfic dot net called Sam and her boys. But since Siler needs more fic and this works stand-alone... :)

Munching contentedly on a handful of very-bad-for-him, buttery popcorn, Jack walked all the way up the stairs, stopping at the end of the last row in surprise.

Curious but happy enough with the seeming coincidence, Jack eased himself to the centre of the row and, with a slight smile, looked at the man sitting there in rarely-seen civilian gear, "Siler?"

The sergeant looked up impassively, nodding a completely casual hello, "General."

Jack took that as acceptance of his presence and sat down next to him, dropping his drink in the holder and shrugging out of his leather jacket one arm at a time as he passed his bag of junk food back and forth, "What are you doing here?"

"Came to watch a movie, sir"

The general rolled his eyes, wondering how George had always managed to keep smiling when *he'd* pulled those comments. "Funny, sergeant. How have you managed never to get written up for insolence?"

If Jack hadn't been giving him a mock-hard look, he'd never have seen his minute quirk of the lips in response, "No idea what you're talking about, sir."

Shaking his head with a genuine smile, Jack looked back at the screen, enjoying the reminder of his old life. A job he could sometimes actually get satisfaction from; people who had a sense of humour. "So what are you doing in Washington?"

"General Landry lent me to Doc Lee to setup some tech for a presentation to the Joint Chiefs."

Jack could all too easily picture the annoying scientist who found more ways to screw up than Siler did to hurt himself and winced, glad he didn't have to be present. "..Good luck with that."

"Thank you, sir."

Unsurprised by the laconic tone, Jack huffed a quick laugh, lounging back with a happy sigh. They listened to the crappy music and watched the quiz questions, frowning at the teeny-bopper subject-matters and grunting when they missed the more serious ones they expect themselves to know.

Annoyed at missing one too many, Jack's mind wandered and he frowned in odd thought. "So Siler."

The sergeant turned his head and raised a brow at the idly leading tone, "Sir."

Jack nodded, still staring at the screen, "I've had the strangest few days."

Siler shrugged, munching more popcorn, "You *do* work with deep-space radar telemetry, sir. Strange seems the new normal."

"Not *this* kind of strange. I kept encountering experienced, no-nonsense non-coms when I expected to have to deal with annoying two-bit pencil-pushers."

Out the corner of his eyes, Jack saw the sergeant nod seriously, "Really. Sounds terrible."

He snorted his response to the sarcasm, "So what possible plague could cause all the people I have to deal with to be replaced with men and women who are the soul of efficiency? To the point that I'm actually *ahead* of my to-do pile..."

"Can't imagine, sir."

A friendly master sergeant mysteriously in Washington and a legion of NCOs apparently at his service. It didn't take an astro-physicist to do the math. Though the question of *why* his old snarky lead sergeant would do such a thing... could indeed take an astro-physicist to solve for.

Damn. Jack grinned to himself; he knew he loved that woman for a reason.

By the time the production company clip finally heralded the start of The Simpsons movie, Jack stared at his so-sensibly small but now *empty* popcorn bag in accusation, unaware of the wide grin that flashed over Siler's face and was gone before he wordlessly offered his bucket.

####

The unmarked boxed set of the last 10 seasons of the Simpsons appeared in his mailbox with a D.C. post stamp the same day he got an email from Sam, just returned from a month-long deep-space mission on the Apollo.

~Hey Siler,
I can't thank you enough for running interference for Jack; he still grins every time the subject comes up! I knew you'd get him to that theatre.. but I never imagined you'd put him in such a good mood in the doing! You never cease to amaze me, my old friend. I meant what I said, you can ask me for anything and I'll do anything to get it for you. For that matter, I'm pretty sure Jack suspects -and is grateful-, so if you ever need anything from him...

Take care of yourself,
your friend, always. Sam~