Title: Infirmed

Rating: PG

Spoilers: minor spoilers for s9

Summary: Vala spends some time in the infirmary

Author's Note: Birthday fic for windandthestars. Happy birthday!

Date: 13/11/09

Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.


There were certain truths Carolyn Lam had learnt in her time, however short, at the SGC. The first thing she had learnt – that, she suspected, they had all learnt – was that nothing was impossible. The second was that no matter how many assistants you assigned him, no matter how strict an isolation she put him in, Siler would invariably manage to injure himself in one way or another at least once a day. And the third, perhaps the most critical, was that if SG-1 was quiet – expect trouble. This is why, when the unexpected silence of the infirmary registered with her, she left her work to go investigate.

Vala was, surprisingly, exactly where she'd left her: resting on one of the infirmary beds, sprained ankle wrapped and elevated. When Carolyn had left her she had been surrounded by her teammates, basking in their attentive pampering. Now she was alone, but her friends had left plenty to keep her occupied. Teal'c had appropriated what seemed like every pillow on base, propping her up securely on her throne of bedding. Daniel had left her a staggering pile of reports – no doubt her own that needed to be completed – but had tempered his 'gift' with a sugary drink from her favourite off-base coffee shop. Sam had provided several glossy magazines – one of which sat open on the mattress beside her, collecting crumbs from the pie Cam had smuggled out of the mess. All in all a perfectly normal scene of an injured SG-1 member, except that Vala had gone just that one step further in making herself a little more at home.

The bandage wrapped around her ankle, which had once been a pristine white, was now decorated in florescent yellow swirls – and the highlighter that had previously been neatly clipped to the patient file now laid discarded on the floor. Part of Carolyn – the doctor who was well used to working with difficult patients and disciplined officers – wanted to sit Vala upright, and tell her that her behaviour wasn't exactly appropriate for a military base. But another part – the part that saw how Vala had lit up earlier under her friend's attention – merely smiled as she crossed the room to confiscate the iodine Vala was using to stain her fingernails.

"I was using that, you know," Vala said, though not seeming all too upset (or surprised) at having her toy removed.

Iodine salvaged, she placed it out of reach of the invalid. "I'm sure there's something more productive you could be doing with your down time."

"It wouldn't be down time if I was working," Vala said dismissively, picking up her magazine and spilling crumbs everywhere before placing it down once more. "You'll just have to entertain me, doctor."

Carolyn looked over at her patient. She had interacted with the woman on several occasions now – it was hard not to with SG-1 having the track record they did – but still she didn't know her very well. The truth was, she didn't really know anyone on base all that well yet, her father aside (and even that was questionable). Vala's words could have been an offhand comment, but just as easy could have been an earnest appeal for company – she just didn't know.

"After all," Vala continued. "Daniel was telling me just the other day that entertainment is the best medicine."

"I think you mean 'laughter', laughter is the best medicine."

"Well, if you entertain me I will be laughing, won't I?" There wasn't really much Carolyn could say to argue with that, and Vala wasn't planning on giving her the chance. Turning on her bed, Vala rearranged the mound of pillows so she could lounge across them as she stared at her doctor, waiting for her entertainment to start.

Vala didn't really know Carolyn Lam all that well. She trusted doctors well enough to patch her up after a fight, but didn't really spend a lot of time thinking about them afterwards – they'd already done their job, what more did she need from them? But this doctor at the SGC intrigued her in a way she didn't really understand. Perhaps it was because she was so young, so unlike most of the doctors she had been attended by in the past. Possibly it was because she refused to acknowledge the favour her father's position could afford her, while Vala questioned if she could ever ignore it in her shoes. Or maybe it was simply that she recognised in her a familiar awkwardness – a desire to prove herself to these people so tight knit it was near impossible to break through.

Scrunching the pillow tighter under her chin Vala fixed Carolyn with a cheeky grin. "Come now Doctor, surely we can find something to entertain us."