Disclaimer: Stargate is not mine, and I stake no claims to it whatsoever. No copyright infringement intended.
Timeframe: So we have a little bit of a timeskip here. This is after SE06 EP02: Redemption Part 2, but before EP03
A/N: Sooo...I decided I wanted to have a little something else on the end - you know, wrap some stuff up. So here we go...I hope it's as good as the first chapter. Please read, review, and please enjoy :)
"You know, I'm really surprised they even let us back in here," Jack commented off-handedly, leaning back in his chair, deigning to not even look at the menu.
"Oh really? Why wouldn't they?" Jonas asked innocently, all the while examining the carefully printed lists of food.
"A couple of years ago Daniel, Colonel O'Neill, and I got into a bit of a fight here," Sam explained, grinning impishly at the memory.
"Ah ah ahhh," Jack reprimanded jovially. "It was a mere scuffle. If it had been a full out fight we woulda killed someone," he finished smugly.
"All of our physical capabilities had been enhanced thanks to alien devices that we were wearing," Sam explained to the obviously baffled Kelownan.
"Oh," he murmured, nodding his head affably.
"What can I get for you?" a young woman asked, coming to stand beside the table. Sam looked up, and she noticed the woman start visibly. The waitress was rather short, with shoulder length reddish hair pulled back into a ponytail at the nape of her neck. Although she was older, and her hair was longer, there was no denying the fact that she had been the one to serve them during that noteworthy visit to O'Malley's.
"One of your steaks, rare, with french-fries and a beer," Jack told her matter-of-factly.
"Um, that's all?" the woman asked, clearly a little confused, doing a double take.
"For me," O'Neill informed her.
"I would like the same, except a baked potato with mine and a diet Pepsi," Sam told the waitress. The girl wrote the order down, glancing back up at the other two.
"And what can I get for you?" she asked Teal'c and Jonas.
Teal'c was the next to place his order. "I would like the bison steak, well done, with both french-fries and a baked potato with water as my beverage."
"Ummmm…" Jonas deliberated, still scanning the menu, looking extremely indecisive. "I suppose I'll just go with a steak and french-fries and a baked potato, potato salad, green beans, garlic rolls, and chili," he said innocently. "And Coke," he added, grinning like a little kid.
After a few minutes, their drinks all arrived, the pensive waitress placing them on the table while never taking her eyes off of her customers.
"Remind me to give her a big tip," O'Neill said as she left, taking a long draught of his Guinness. He sighed as he swallowed, glancing around at the restaurant.
"Wow!" Jonas's surprised exclamation brought all of their attentions to the young alien. "It's…fizzing!"
"That's because it's carbonated," Sam told him laughing.
"Don't ask," Jack warned, "Or we'll be here the rest of the night while Carter explains exactly what effervescence is."
Sam and Teal'c looked at the leader of SG-1 in surprise. Noticing their slightly awed facial expressions, he shrugged nonchalantly, saying, "What? I paid attention in chemistry…sometimes," he amended.
Teal'c shared a small eyebrow raise with Sam, who grinned in response. Jonas, who was busy taking another large drink of his soda, didn't see anything.
A few minutes of pointless chatter later, their food arrived, steaming deliciously on the plates. Jonas immediately dug in, chewing with great gusto.
"Oh, how I love being able to eat my steak in peace, without the fate of the galaxy hanging over my head. Either that or an overly-hyper alien talking practically non-stop. Carter, remind me to never let Jonas have caffeine again, understand?"
Sam chuckled darkly, finishing her meal and choosing to merely nod in agreement as said alien returned to the table, bearing a milkshake in one hand, a piece of lemon meringue pie in the other.
"So is it true that Dr. McKay is deathly allergic to citrus?" Jonas asked, placing a large forkful of the creamy desert into his mouth.
"Indeed it is," Teal'c told the much younger man. "Perhaps you should have chosen to threaten him with a piece of citrus fruit instead of striking him, Major Carter," Teal'c informed Sam unexpectedly, a devilish gleam in his eyes.
Both Jonas and Jack looked up at Sam sharply as she ducked her head, her cheeks turning pink slightly.
"Carter?" O'Neill asked, "Do you mean to tell me what I thought was a hallucination was actually real?"
"Uh, I'm not sure, Sir, seeing as I don't know what your supposed hallucination was," Sam responded, blushing a little deeper.
"You punched McKay in the face and broke his nose. Then Teal'c grabbed you. Am I right?" Jack got his answer as Sam's blush continued to deepen.
"Yes sir," she answered, looking up and meeting her CO's eyes.
"Good for you Carter," Jack told her, shooting her one of his rarest smiles. One of which, although he would have fervently denied had he been told, only a certain Samantha Carter could draw out of him.
"Wow, Sam, my awe of you has just increased. And when was this?" Jonas asked, leaning forward, all the while looking impressed.
"During our stay at Area 51 during the duration of the work being done on Project Hellfire," Teal'c informed the newest member of the team.
"Ya know, I always said that project was bound to be a failure. I mean, seriously, with a name like 'Hellfire', as well as the fact that it was being directed by Rodney McKay? I'm glad we got out of there before something really did explode."
Teal'c grinned, Jonas and Sam's chuckles filling the air.
"So what's this game, Pool, all about?" Jonas asked, changing the subject as he finished the last drink of his milkshake.
"I can show you, if you like," Sam announced. His enthusiastic grin was all the answer she needed, and she stood, beginning to explain the rules as they went to find a vacant table.
"Ten bucks says Carter wins," O'Neill stated, turning to Teal'c.
The Jaffa looked solemnly at O'Neill, then said, "This is not a fair wager. I do not accept."
"Aw, come on T," Jack wheedled, standing to follow the two scientists.
As the two of them left, the waitress returned, beginning to clean up after the four of them. She glanced at their retreating backs and, once again, her mind flitted back to that one night, almost two full years ago.
"Um, three of the biggest steaks you've got, with everything. Rare. Baked potato."
"You got it." She had begun to collect the menus when the oldest man cut her off.
"'Scuse me…that was for me," and he had given her a pointed look.
And that had only been the beginning of the craziest night of her life.
Just as she was moving a dirty plate onto her tray, she caught sight of a crisp, twenty-dollar bill lying on the table. She picked it up, surprised at such a hefty tip, but thankful nonetheless.
Once again, she glanced at the four clients. They were standing around a pool table, the woman showing the younger man how to hold the pool stick. The waitress had never seen him before, and at the same time, she noticed that one of the men that usually was part of the group was missing – the one with shaggy brown hair and glasses – and she could only hope he was okay.
As she watched the four of them interact, she could almost feel a certain sadness that hung over the small group, the feeling more pronounced in the blonde woman and the oldest man. And yet, as she watched, the gray haired man said something, and the rest of them smiled, the woman's laughter audible over the dull murmur that filled the restaurant.
While being completely honest with herself, she rather liked the odd group of people that occasionally ate at the restaurant. She also had a strange sense of respect for the group. Perhaps, in another life, they saved Earth or something she thought to herself, chuckling as she lifted the tray full of dirty dishes away from the table, the laughter from the small group still ringing in her ears. And despite the last encounter with them, what with the brawl and everything, they were still some of her favorite customers.
Sam retreated from the pool table, leaning against the bar beside her CO as they watched Jonas practice his Billiard skills. A comfortable silence descended between the two of them as they watched the proceedings, both merely reveling in each other's company.
"You know, you shouldn't have punched him," O'Neill said, finally breaking the silence.
"I know," Carter sighed, flicking a glance up so she could gauge the mood of the man standing beside her. "Permission to speak freely, sir?"
"But of course, Major," Jack said eloquently.
"Honestly, it felt good, Sir," Sam said, laughing. "The only thing that could ever rival the feeling was when I beat Turghan, or if I had ever managed to land a punch on Apophis…or Hathor. Either of them would have been more satisfying." O'Neill chuckled.
"Hopefully you never get the chance," he said, smiling "Now, what do you say we go play some pool?" he asked, realizing, deep down inside, that he was about to get his butt beaten into the ground.
"But of course," Sam echoed him, a wicked taunt in her tone.
Something in the group seemed to shift, almost as if the world had tilted on its axis a little bit. Although everything around them looked the same, but the way that Sam and Jack both saw the world had abruptly changed. No longer was it a world full of grays and despairs, but instead it was a world where laughter abounded, and where, although you may have lost someone, they were never truly gone. It was a world where you could punch a man and he would respect you.
Looking up as Sam sent the cue ball slamming into the loose triangle of balls, Jack grinned to himself, sighing in contentment. All was right with the world, and life was good.