Author's Note: I was watching Singularity, and I was wondering what might have happened if Sam had made it back to the top, and then realized that the bomb wasn't going to go off. This is my take on how Daniel, Jack, and Teal'c would have reacted to find a broken-down Sam in the elevator. And, of course, there will be slightly over-the-top references to Sam/Jack.
Disclaimer: Don't own it.
Sam slammed her hands into the elevator door. She felt her breath catch as the tears rolled down her face. She kicked the door angrily as a sob ripped from her throat. She turned around and hit the other wall with balled-up fists and slumped down, balling herself up into the corner as she continued to sob.
She reached the top sometime later. The elevator doors opened, but she couldn't bring herself to move from her spot in the corner. She couldn't bring herself to stop the tears from flowing freely.
Jack, Daniel, and Teal'c watched with shocked looks on their faces as the elevator doors opened to reveal a sobbing Sam Carter.
Her knees were pulled up to her chest, her arms wrapped around them, her face hidden by her arms and knees. She was crying, and her body was shaking. None of the three men knew what to do until they heard her whimper. All three of them moved at once.
Daniel was the first to get there. He dropped down next to her and put his hands on either side of her face. He whispered soothing words to her, eventually getting her to stand. When she did, Daniel pulled her into his arms and hugged her tightly.
Sam cried freely into his shoulder, knowing that she had nothing to hide from him. Her sobs quieted, and Daniel squeezed her once before letting go of her.
She felt Teal'c's large hand drop to her shoulder, and she wiped her slowing tears away. She tried not to think about the little girl she had left down there, so many floors under the ground. She knew that it would start a fresh wave of tears that she didn't need her team to see. She just wanted to leave so she could cry in the privacy of her own home.
She looked up at Jack, and he just looked into her eyes. Sam's breath caught once again as she saw the pain roiling in his eyes. The emotions on his face were laid-bare for her to see. He knew what it was like to lose a child. He knew what she was going through—he knew it more than she did. She hadn't lost a child that was hers. She had just lost a child she had grown too attached to.
Her lip began to quiver and she looked away from him. He made as if to move towards her, lifting his arm; to do what, Sam didn't know. Instead, he looked down at his watch.
"If you guys want to get out of here…"
So they were nearing the time. Sam wanted nothing more than to leave, but she knew that her feet wouldn't move. She didn't even bother trying. It was as if she was bolted to the cement floor.
Jack's gentle voice reached her ears, and she looked up at him.
"If you want to leave…"
She just looked blankly at him. He nodded his head.
Sam stood there, dreading the rumble that she would feel, the boom that would reach her. It would make it final, and she wasn't sure if that was something she could handle.
Jack watched his second-in-command shake, and he fought to get a handle on his own emotions. According to Daniel, Sam had become quite attached to the girl they had found. Personally, he didn't blame her.
Daniel had told him that she had been great with her, giving up meetings and lab time just to spend time with her.
Jack knew that Sam was beginning to think of Cassandra as her own, based on those facts alone. If they weren't off-world, Sam was in her lab. Nothing could pull her away from there. In fact, the only time she left was when one of her teammates, or Janet, reminded her that she had to eat and sleep.
To know that this little girl had the ability to make Sam forget about her lab made Jack wonder if Sam wanted to be a mother. She had given up a lot to be with the SGC. He knew that she had been engaged at one time, but, other than that, he didn't know much about her personal life.
She would make a great mom. He wished that he could have been there to see her interact with the girl.
She was a little older than Charlie.
Thinking about him brought back memories, both good and bad. Jack closed his eyes for a moment, once again fighting his emotions. He didn't even really now the little girl, but the thought of losing another child made his heart clench. Under his closed eyelids, he felt tears come to his eyes.
Opening them again, he found himself staring into Sam's blue eyes. Her eyes were tear-filled as well, and he wondered how he must look to her.
He heard Daniel clear his throat. "We're gonna… go… ah… check on the driver," he said. He tugged on Teal'c's arm, trying to pull the bigger man away from their emotional teammates.
"I do not see why we must check on the driver," Teal'c said.
"We just… we just have to." He looked pointedly at Sam and Jack, making it even more obvious than he had before.
Teal'c looked at Sam and Jack before inclining his head. He folded his arms behind his back and followed Daniel back towards the entrance.
"Subtle, Daniel," Jack muttered.
Sam gave a watery chuckle. "Subtly has always been Daniel's strong suit," she said softly. She bit her bottom lip and chewed on it for a few moments before speaking again. "I'm sorry."
"Sorry?" Jack asked, well aware that he was still close to completely breaking down. He imagined that Sam wasn't too far from that again, as well, as the way she had begun shaking again was any indication.
"This… this must be…" She seemed to struggle with the words. "Difficult, for you."
"I'm not going to lie to you, Carter," Jack said softly. "It is. But… you have to know… I'll be… there… for you… if you really need me."
Sam looked up at him, her shaking becoming less controllable. The tears brimmed at her eyelids as she thought about all of the pain he had suffered through, all of the loss that he had to endure.
"Maybe… maybe someone should be there for you… Sir," she added as an after-thought.
He scrubbed a hand over his face. "Carter…" He trailed off, at a loss for words. A moment later, he touched her arm, making her turn to face him. "C'mere."
To his surprise, she didn't even give him a second look as she curled into his chest. He wrapped both of his arms securely around her as his chin came to rest on her forehead. Her sobs broke the silence as his own silent tears rolled down his cheeks.
He just held her. That was all they needed.
Daniel and Teal'c could only stay away for so long. When they heard their approaching footsteps, Sam and Jack slowly pulled apart.
Sam looked up at Jack, surprised to find that he had tears of his own on his face. Biting her lip again, she reached up to wipe his tears gently off of his face. He looked at her, his chocolate eyes wide with surprise.
Still staring into her eyes, he cupped her face with one hand, brushing his thumb across her cheek.
This small moment was all that they would be allowed. They knew that they couldn't do this. But in this moment, they needed each other. In this moment, they were facing loss… all they could do was offer each other comfort.
"The driver is fine," Daniel said, looking everywhere but at Sam and Jack.
Jack, despite himself, chuckled lightly and shook his head. He turned to Sam, but her eyes had widened again. Jack put a hand on her shoulder.
"Carter," he said. "Are you okay?"
Sam didn't look at him. "Yeah," she said. She shrugged his hand off and sprinted towards the elevator, pressing the down button. She slid into the elevator as soon as the doors opened enough and hit the 'close' button.
Jack ran after her, his fingers slipping on the doors as he tried to stop them from closing. He pulled them away just in time as it snapped closed.
"Carter!" he yelled, slamming his fists against the doors. "Damn it!"
"What do we do?" Daniel asked in panicked voice.
"Captain Carter will want to go back to the child," Teal'c said.
"I know that!" Jack snapped. He closed his eyes and raked his hand through his hair. "I'm sorry, T," he said. He looked at Daniel. "We wait."
Sam ignored Jack's voice as it came over the intercom. She bounced impatiently from one foot to another as she neared the lowest floor.
She couldn't believe she had missed this. She had been so caught up in her grief that she hadn't even realized… She shook her head. She would think about this later. Right now, her only concern was getting to Cassandra.
The elevator doors opened, and she rushed to the heavy door. She turned the lock as fast as she could. Finally, she felt it click as it unlocked and she yanked the door open.
"Sam?" Cassie cried.
"I'm here," Sam said as her watch began to beep. Cassie ran into her arms and she held her tightly, closing her eyes. "I'm here."
"Carter!" Jack yelled into the intercom again, his voice becoming impatient. He watched as the numbers climbed higher. She finally reached the bottom floor, and he could see her running out of the elevator, towards the door that she had locked the girl in. "Carter!"
"Daniel! I don't want to hear it!" Jack yelled. He jammed his finger on the intercom again. "Carter, come in, damn it!"
His watch began to beep. His heart pounded uncontrollably as he reached for the intercom once more.
"Sam," he said, his voice gentle.
He paused, waiting a few moments. He could practically feel Daniel and Teal'c waiting behind him.
"I'm here." Sam's voice came through the intercom. "I'm fine, Cassie is fine, we're both fine."
Jack felt relief flood through him. He dropped his forehead to the intercom and closed his eyes.
Daniel nudged Jack aside, pressing his own finger to the intercom button. "How did you know?" he asked, ignoring the annoyed look Jack gave him.
"I finally realized that when she woke up in the elevator, it was because we had taken her far enough away from the Stargate."
"So…" Daniel looked at Jack and Teal'c, his eyes alight with hope. "So, she won't…" he trailed off.
"No," Sam said, relief in her voice. "She won't."
Jack pushed Daniel aside. "Bring her up, Carter," he said. "We'll be waiting."
When the elevator doors opened again, they revealed a very different Sam Carter.
This one had a bright smile on her face and had a girl wrapped in blanket cradled in her arms. She was so happy that she was crying again, but they were not the heavy sobs that she had had before.
"So… what happens now?" Daniel asked.
"It will be absorbed into her bloodstream," Sam said.
"How did you know that she would be okay?" Jack asked.
"Mother's intuition, perhaps?" Teal'c said.
Sam smiled slightly. "We'll see."
Jack watched as Sam pushed Cassie on the swings. He crossed his arms and leaned against the tree he had tied the dog to. Daniel came up next to him, his hands in his pockets.
"She would make a great mom," Daniel said.
"Yeah, I know," Jack agreed.
"It's a shame that she can't adopt Cassie."
Jack sighed, knowing all too well why Sam couldn't adopt Cassie. He looked at Daniel, who was also watching Sam and Cassie. Jack did a quick scan of the park for Teal'c, and he found him juggling several ice cream cones.
"Well, she doesn't want to put Cassie through our disappearances," Jack said quietly. "The long absences begin to take its toll."
"Sam told me that it was better for Janet to take Cassie," Daniel said in the same quiet voice. "She also told me that she shouldn't be attached."
"Now she can. Janet is her mother, and now she can be attached to her."
"It's not fair," Daniel said quietly. He looked at Jack, then at Sam, then back at Jack. "None of it is."
Jack looked at Daniel. He couldn't get into what Daniel was suggesting. He shook his head slightly, wishing that Daniel could understand more than he did.
"Why don't you go help Teal'c with the ice cream?"
"He looks like he might drop some."
Daniel shook his head at Jack. He was closing up again. He knew that, for right now, at least, Jack would try and build the walls again.
He also knew that he, Sam, and Teal'c would break down those walls again.
"Alright." He cast a hesitant smile at Jack, and Jack returned the smile. Satisfied with their progress, Daniel turned towards Teal'c, offering to help him with the ice cream.
Jack turned to look at Sam and Cassie again. Sam had sat on the swing next to Cassie and was now kicking occasionally at the ground. Cassie was swinging high in the air, shrieking with delight. She waved to Jack with one hand as she dragged her feet against the ground, causing her to stop.
"Come on, Jack!" she exclaimed. "Come push me and Sam!"
With a smile, Jack bounded towards Cassie and Sam, giving them each a push. Daniel and Teal'c had arrived as well, offering their many choices of ice cream to Cassie.
They were his family, and that was all he needed.
Author's Note: Well, I hope you all liked this. Review, please?