The Argument for Tau

The Adventures of Nerdy Carter and First Sergeant O'Neill: Episode III

Based upon Stargate: SG-1

Continuation of Chapter V of "Alternatives" and "The Feynman Lectures on Physics."

Okay, I'm calling this "Episode III" because while "Redecorating" wasn't really part of the series, it was the catalyst for the idea, so it counts. "Feynman" is a large story in terms of timeline, but it only counts as 1 part. We will probably see more of these stories in the future, I hope you enjoy them.

I love to hear both feedback and ideas.

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Jack watched his wife from the doorway of their bedroom. She lay on her stomach, with a pillow under her chest, with her face buried in a large textbook. She was laying on top of the covers, her knees bent and her feet wiggling in the air. She was so cute sometimes. He had been standing there for a few minutes and she had given to indication that she knew he was there.

She let out an interested and high pitched "hm" and turned the page. She shifted her position and shoved the pillow a little further under her chest, creating a little more distance between her and her book. He noticed her glasses were sitting on the nightstand.

He finally entered their room and started to get ready for bed. His wife, once again, was completely oblivious.

Emerging from the bathroom, he ran his tongue over his teeth. He had brushed and flossed. Whenever he went to the dentist as a kid, they always praised him for doing a good job. He was proud to learn that they were always surprised that he was a regular flosser. Apparently, most people just didn't. That surprised him. It wasn't like it was too much of a chore. Keep the floss right next to the toothpaste and it's all there, one stop shopping (as Sam liked to call it).

Again, Jack watched his wife from the doorway. She was still reading her textbook, but she had moved. She had slid under the blankets, and consequently her feet were no longer sticking up in the air. He smiled, she left him the perfect alley of attack. He wondered if she did that on purpose.

Well, maybe she had just gotten cold. It was a little chilly in the room and she was in shorts and a tank top, which was what she usually slept in; even in the winter when they broke out the flannel sheets.

Sam let out another sound. This time it was more of a long, low, contemplative "hmmmm."

He smiled and approached her. Slipping under the covers and crawling around on the bed a little until he settled half on top of her, one of his legs between hers, but leaning on the opposite forearm. "What are you reading about?" he asked, nuzzling into her neck. He trailed his other arm down hers and settled it between her own arm and her body.

"Tau," she answered, trying to sound absentminded. He knew she was no longer reading, being too distracted by the feel of his body on hers.

"What's tau?"

"Two pi," she replied.

"Two pies?" he asked, invoking the obvious play on words. They had talked about pi(e) before. He seemed to remember a discussion in mid-March which involved copious amounts of redi-whip. "Why that is so much better than just one."

She chuckled and reached back to tangle her fingers in his hair a second before turning the page. He was willing to bet a million dollars that she hadn't actually finished the page, but was just maintaining her rouse of continuing to read and ignore his advances.

"See I'm not so sure. There is a small movement to replace pi with tau. I'm not sure how I feel about it."

"Tell me about it," he said, running his nose across her neck, following it by several kisses. "Maybe I can help you decide." The arm that had been innocently settled between her arm and her body suddenly became not-so-innocent. She stifled a gasp.

"Well, tau would make radians more intuitive. A whole circle would be one tau and a half circle would be one half tau. A circle is two pi, so half a circle is a pi, it's off by a factor of two."

"Okay," he responded, moving his lips just enough for her to make out his words. "Chalk one up for tau."

"The circumference formula makes about the same sense. While circumference is related to the diameter by pi, it is related to radius by tau."

"Okay, call it a draw." He took the liberty of sneaking down her back a little bit. She twitched her shoulder blades under his touch.

"Euler's Identity works for pi, but it's only a little different for tau."

"What's that?"

"'E' to the 'I' pi is negative one. Well, 'E' to the 'I' tau is one."

"I think tau wins that one."

Her body, which had been relaxing under him, tightened. She turned her head to him. "Why?" she asked with genuine curiosity.

He moved his lips from her skin and met her gaze in a brief moment of seriousness. "Positives are easier than negatives. This way an absolute value won't change the identity."

She smiled at him. She was proud of how she'd actually taught him something over their time together. His not-so-innocent hand got a little mischievous again and redirected her attention.

"People would have to learn a new unit circle. That would be a pain."

"Okay, chalk one up for pi," he said, feeling her body quickly relax again.

He heard her snap her book shut and it thud as she pushed it to the floor. She turned in his arms, bringing her mouth to his ear. "What do you think? Pi or tau?"

He kissed his way back up to her lips, leaving a trail of moisture. "Tau, definitely tau," he said as her innocent hands became not-so-innocent.

"Why's that?" she asked, biting her bottom lip playfully.

"Because," he released her just long enough to turn off the lamp on the night stand, "it's waaaay better to make two things one thing then leave them separate." He flashed her a grin in the dim light. "Don't you agree, Doctor Carter?"

- . - FIN - . -