So again I don't own either series...SG-1 is kinda out of canon/season in that I keep General Hammond and Dr. Frasier...while I bump Jack and Sam back to Colonel and Major respectively. NCIS is set just after the events in Season Five's "DogTags" episode...and if you actually do like the way Abby treated Tim in that episode, please do us both a favor and stop reading now.
Written in the Stars 2
Jack O'Neill watches as his son sleeps. Okay so Tim McGee isn't actually his son, but he was Sara's and the kid had asked him if it would be okay if Tim called him Dad. Tim had called from D.C. a few weeks ago asking if he could use his summer vacation and spend time with Jack and his team. Jack loves the extra time with Tim; the young man is just as exuberant and excitable as Sara used to be. Tonight however, there's a difference in him that's making Jack worry. He's been more subdued and now, he's sure that there's something on the kid's mind. It's the way he's sleeping that bothers Jack. It's almost as if he's on edge, as if Tim is expecting to be woken at anytime and yelled at for not getting something done.
"You okay, Jack?"
Daniel Jackson's question makes O'Neill shake his head.
"Something's wrong, Daniel. Something just…look at him." Jack points at the sleeping man and Daniel peers around the doorway. At first, Daniel smiles when he sees the way Tim clutches his pillow, holding it tight to his body. Daniel observes him for a few more minutes and has to agree with Jack that someone or something is bothering Tim even in his dreams. Daniel finally turns away and motions for Jack to follow him away from the fitfully sleeping figure.
"That's a death-grip Jack. Admittedly my doctorates are in archeology but I think Janet would agree with me that something is troubling your son even in his sleep."
Both men can hear Tim murmuring something incomprehensible in his sleep and head back inside. Jack lightly reaches down and touches Tim's hand producing an effect neither member of SG-1 is expecting.
"I'm sorry, boss! It's not my…why won't you listen…I…" Tim's ramblings fade away and Jack finds himself frowning as he contemplates just what exactly Tim's mutterings could have meant. Daniel's face also holds the pinched look of concern linked to what those few words revealed. Then Tim turns over, and both men stare in shocked disbelief at the blood spotted bandages on his neck and wrist.
"Tim…Danny, go get Doc Frasier." Jack sits beside Tim on the bed, wondering now how his son had come to be injured and why he hadn't noticed the bandages when Tim had arrived.
Daniel's already sprinting down the corridor and bursts into the medical facility at full sprint. Janet jumps in surprise and stands gaping with shock at what had just happened.
"Daniel! You…what's wrong?"
"Tim's got wounds on his neck and wrist that we didn't know about. He started having a nightmare and I think he's torn some stitches open."
"I'll grab my bag."
Back in Tim's room, Jack listens as his son's nightmare starts again. He watches as Tim's left arm comes up, pulling an invisible trigger while simultaneously trying to protect his throat and neck from some unseen attacker. It's obvious to Jack, that the boy is reliving whatever it was, that caused his injuries.
"Not my…she used my…why am I bad...he attacked me first…."
Jack thinks back to when Tim had arrived earlier that day. He'd been tired and quiet, but Jack had put it down to the long flight from DC to Colorado Springs and then the subsequent drive out to the Mountain. Which brings Jack's thoughts to yet another topic; something that had been bugging him since the kid met him at the airport.
Where was Tim's new coat? He'd been so proud when he'd told Jack about it a few weeks ago. Jack had thought with the current cool temperatures that Tim would have the coat with him if he wasn't wearing it. So where was it? Janet steps into the room drawing Jack out of his musings. He offers her a small smile and makes room for her to check on Tim.
Janet is swift and efficient as she cleans Tim's wounds and covers them with fresh bandages. Motioning for Jack to follow her, she steps back out into the hallway and takes a deep breath before asking the question that has been burning in the back of her mind since seeing the injuries.
"Just what has he been doing Colonel? Those aren't minor scratches, those are dog bites. Admittedly, they are healing and someone did a good job of stitching him up, but that's …and he keeps muttering about keeping the dog. They didn't make him do that, did they?"
Janet's concern is nothing to Jack's suddenly rising anger. The fact that her concern is so deep rooted exacerbates this and makes his temper bubble dangerously below the surface. He remembers Tim calling him two days ago, asking permission to come out earlier than they had originally planned and thinking back, there had been a slight tremor in the younger man's voice, almost as if he had been afraid Jack would say no. The relief in Tim's reply when Jack had said "Of course, come on out and spend the week if you can," had been almost palpable.
"Thanks Ja-Dad, I'll see if I can take some time off, we've been pretty –," Tim had been interrupted by someone shouting at him from across what Jack had guessed to be the office.
"McGee, quit talking to the girlfriend and get me those bank card records!"
"Yes Boss!…bye Dad."
Jack had called Tim back that night and they'd made their plans for Jack to pick him up on Friday evening. When they'd arrived at the Mountain, Tim had claimed exhaustion and requested permission to go to bed before meeting with the team in the morning. It's not right! Everything is off with Tim at the moment and he doesn't like it. Jack watches Tim for a few more minutes then asks Daniel to stay with him while he goes and talks with General Hammond.
The gruff yet kindly older man is pouring over some paperwork and looks up as Jack knocks once and closes the door behind him.
"Jack what are you doing here? Didn't your son come in tonight?"
"That's what I need to talk to you about General."
Hammond closes the file he'd been looking at and motions for Jack to sit down. Instead, Jack starts pacing the office as though trying work off whatever frustration he was harboring at the moment. Hammond watches him for a full minute before asking Jack what is wrong.
Before Jack can answer Daniel is beating on the door. "Jack! Get back here! Janet needs your assistance!"
Jack's tearing the door open and Hammond is hot on both men's heels. As they re-enter Tim's room Jack can hear sobbing and knows that something or someone has severely traumatized his son. Pushing down the rage that keeps threatening to boil over, Jack pulls Tim into his arms, cradling him close.
First star I see tonight
I wish I may I wish I might
Have the wish I wish tonight.
The poem, old and ancient as it is, calms Tim down like nothing has so far tonight. He feels his son's body relax and remembers the nights when he held Charlie close and nursed him through his nightmares with the very same words. Jack keeps his arms around Tim, reassuring the younger man of his presence. His voice low and steady Jack recites the poem until he feels Tim's heartbeat slow to that of a natural rhythm. It's steady thrumming signaling the end of the nightmare that has him locked in the terror that he feels.
Running his hand over Tim's head Jack frowns at the warmth emanating from the younger man.
"I'm here Colonel. Good job calming him down, sir. He has a low grade fever that could have been brought on by the nightmare. I'll double check his bandages, but there's no redness or excess heat from the wounds so I don't think it's an infection."
Janet looks again at her patient, and then at the man holding him so gently in his arms. A lump forms in her throat at the love and caring that is on Jack's face; expressions that are rarely seen by anyone outside of this room.
George Hammond watches as Jack tenderly lays Tim back down. He's grown fond of the young man as well and can see something in the way that Jack is with Tim that the others may have missed. He watches Jack carefully ruffle the boy's hair and sees the warring emotions on Tim's face dissipate. They're subtle, but they're there...extreme tension, exhaustion, fear and trepidation are all fading slowly at the soothing, soft voice that Jack is using.
Once everyone is satisfied that Tim McGee is sleeping Hammond motions for Jack and Daniel to follow him. Glancing back inside, he watches as Janet takes Tim's pulse looking for any other signs of illness or infection. When the doctor glances back at him and shows her satisfaction at how Tim is doing, he turns to the two men.
"I don't know the particulars, but gentlemen your mission is a go. Dr. Jackson a quick word if you please."
Putting an arm around Daniel's shoulders, Hammond leads him back down to his office.
"Knowing Colonel O'Neill he'll overlook one vital thing."
George hands over the file he'd been perusing before Jack had come in just a short time ago. Daniel flips through it, and stops when he sees who it's actually on. His startled blue eyes full of questions he looks at the General for confirmation of what he's reading.
"Yes, he's asking to transfer. I know that's it's not the type of research that you normally do, but find out why son, if you can." George turns away and starts to make his way to his chair but pauses as another thought flitters through his mind. He finds himself turning back to Daniel, who is still standing in the same spot holding the file. "Oh and Dr. Jackson? Do try to keep Jack from killing anyone."