Turning the Page

by The Grrrl

Title: Turning the Page

Author: The Grrrl

Author's email: thegrrrl2002@gmail.com

Author's URL: http://thegrrrl2002.slashcity.org/

Archive: Ask first.

Fandom: Stargate SG-1

Rating: PG

Pairings: Sam/Pete, Jack/Daniel

Summary: A glimpse into one possible future for SG-1.

"Here, let me take that, sir," she says, reaching for Jack's empty plate.

Jack holds it just out of her reach. "Jack," he says, enunciating carefully. "Jaaaaack."

"Jack," she repeats with a smile. It's been months now, but she's still not used it and the reminder makes her feel oddly self-conscious. "Hand over the plate," she demands with mock severity, covering her discomfort.

"And no one gets hurt?" Daniel suggests.

Jack adds, "Pete, you're rubbing off on her." He allows her to take the plate.

Everyone laughs, and the moment is past.

She has kept an eye on the two of them throughout the dinner, looking for a sign, some kind of evidence, but they have behaved much the same as always, exchanging glances, finishing one another's sentences, sometimes while making identical gestures. Nothing seems to have changed between them, except maybe they are more relaxed.

She shakes her head. Her mind doesn't need to go there, even though the thought of it makes her want to laugh, what with the bickering and all.

Pete helps her gather up the empty plates. As she lifts the serving platter, Teal'c expertly spears the last slice of pot roast. "The SGC suffers from your absence, O'Neill," he says, not for the first time.

"Absence? What absence?" Daniel asks. "For someone who is supposedly retired, he's constantly underfoot, 'consulting'". He makes little quotation marks in the air with his fingers as he speaks.

"More wine?" Pete has the bottle in his hand, and Daniel eagerly lifts his glass. His cheeks are flushed, and Sam is sure he's already had several glasses. Pete seems to be aware of this, because he only gives Daniel a half a glass. Daniel doesn't notice.

Teal'c nods gravely, and Pete refills his wineglass, too. "O'Neill has much wisdom to impart, due to his many, many years in the service of his country."

"Hey, are you calling me old?" Jack straightens in his chair, the very picture of wounded dignity.

Before Teal'c can answer, Daniel cuts in. "Wise? Are you calling him wise?"

Jack frowns at Daniel, but Daniel only grins. It's a self-satisfied grin, wide enough to make his nose wrinkle. Sam thinks he's being particularly silly and sweet. And so does Jack, apparently. His expression grows warmer, his eyes soften, full of affection and yes, love. She wonders if, had they been alone, Jack would have kissed him. Because, by God, he looks as if he wants to.

She looks away, face growing warm, embarrassed by her curiosity and fascination. She hears Pete ask Jack how many years he's served, and Daniel begins chattering with Teal'c. The conversations grow loud, and then blur together. She can't follow either one, it's as if her brain isn't working right. She realizes once more how much she misses Janet, misses her friendship, her warm smile, her sly humor. There is so much she wants to share with her, so much she needs to tell her. Because Janet would have understand. All these changes—SG-1 disbanded, Jack retired, the whole Daniel and Jack living together thing (they would have a marvelous giggle over that), and now they won't even let her go through the gate.

Sam grabs the stack of plates and heads toward the kitchen, because her eyes are filling, and she doesn't want to cry, not again. She puts the dishes in the sink, and, eyes closed, takes a deep breath.

"Sam?"

She opens her eyes. "Yes, Daniel?" She's fine. She's not crying. No. Not at all.

"I was going to, uh, make some coffee?" Daniel waves a hand at the coffee pot, then looks at her searchingly. "You okay?"

Pasting on a smile, she tells Daniel, "Just fine." Her voice wavers, giving her away. "Maybe a little emotional. Hormones, you know."

Daniel's brows rise. "Really? Oh." He reaches a hand to her still-flat belly, then hesitates and pulls it away. "At least you have a good excuse."

He smiles again, and Sam can't resist taking his hand and kissing his cheek, because he looks so eager and happy for her. "Go sit down. I'll make the coffee," she says.

"Take her with you." Pete is in the kitchen now, making little shooing motions. "Come on now, I told you I'd take care of everything. The pies are warming in the oven, and I'll get the coffee going. Nice and strong," he says, with a nod to Daniel.

"Pete, I can—"

"Go on, Sammy," he says over his shoulder, "I've got everything under control." He's already scooping coffee beans into the grinder.

Sam lets Daniel lead her back to the table. She wants to protest that she's not an invalid, she's only pregnant, for heaven's sake. There are cells deep in her gut that share Pete's DNA, that are dividing, differentiating, becoming another human being without any input from her. But she doesn't say anything, because Pete just wants to take care of her and that's not such a bad thing, not really. It took her a while to learn to let him do that, just like it took her a while to learn how to share a house with another person.

Now there was going to be one more person.

When she sits back down at the table, she fusses with her napkin, shaking it out, folding it, then unfolding it again, as if it were time and space itself. Teal'c refills her water glass and she listens to Pete banging around in the kitchen while Daniel and Jack bicker over who spilled all that gravy on the nice tablecloth.

"Carter?" Jack is leaning forward on his elbows, calling her name.

She looks up, startled. "Huh?"

"What's with the whole deer in the headlights thing?"

Jack, still looking after his team.

"Who, me? I'm—I'm—" I'm pregnant, she thinks. I've got another life growing in my belly, and I have no idea what on earth I'm going to do with it. I'm a scientist, I'm a soldier, I'm not a mother, I'm not prepared. I want my mother, I want Janet, I want to be going through the gate again with Daniel and Teal'c. "I'm okay," she insists.

"You'll do just fine, Carter. Believe me." From his expression, Sam sees that he honestly thinks she can do it.

"I don't know, sir." She realizes what she's said, but he doesn't correct her this time.

"Hey, now, you've got us to help out, you know," Daniel tells her. He reaches across the table to pat her hand.

"I also have knowledge of child-rearing," Teal'c says. "I will be more than happy to assist in any way I can."

She hears Janet's voice in her head. "Listen, the kid's going to grow up with a gay couple and an alien as uncles, not to mention a grandfather with a snake in his neck. Things are going to turn out just fine, honey." The laughter bubbles up out of her, and once she starts, she can't stop. She feels Pete's arms slide around her, and he squeezes her tightly, holding her until it's over.

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