SG1 walked down from the 'gate platform of the newest planet to see what it had to offer.
"Ah, look," O'Neill remarked, pointing around him and gaining the attention of his teammates. "Trees. Never seen those before." Daniel and Carter attempted to hide their laughter at his sarcasm.
"Sir, you could be more positive," Sam commented. Jack's eyebrows raised at this.
"Is that so, captain?"
"Yeah, Jack. I mean, who knows what lies within that forest," the anthropologist replied.
"More trees?" the colonel replied, gaining a snicker from his junior officer. He threw her a smile of appreciation, which disappeared when he looked behind her. "Or maybe not." All of them made their weapons ready and turned to face the forest. What they saw were several women in gauzy robes that barely hid their... attributes.
"Stand down," O'Neill ordered, "but keep your eyes open, just in case."
"My Lords. We had not realized that you would be coming so soon," one of the women said, sounding penitent.
"Um, we're not..." Daniel began, but was quickly cut off by another woman who had advanced on Sam.
"You have brought a tribute with you, and dressed as you are. How strange are the ways of the gods!" All eyes fell on Carter at the woman's comments.
"What do you mean by 'tribute'?" she asked.
"And she speaks without being told to! Never have I seen this with a new tribute. It is a good thing you brought her to us, my Lords, we will make her a more fitting tribute."
"Wait a minute!" Sam exclaimed as she was unceremoniously led off by a few of the women. Her teammates went to stop them, but the remaining women surrounded them.
"Come, my Lords, we will bring you to a more comfortable place. Do not worry, we will not harm the new tribute. That is for you to decide," the first woman told them. The three men looked at each other, then decided that they had no choice. They certainly weren't going to hurt these women, and the women didn't seem likely to hurt them, or Carter, so they might as well go along with this. For now.
Sam had to admit, it hadn't been all that bad. They had cleaned her up so nicely she felt like she was at a spa. A spa that tried to indoctrinate women into being better 'tributes', but a spa all the same. She regretted her original thoughts of cracking heads, but they had gotten her defenses up by hauling her off like they had. Maybe being a 'tribute' mightn't be such a bad thing.
She glanced to the door as someone entered the room, and her thoughts turned to the worse as she was what the woman held in her hands.
"You have *got* to be kidding me," she stated.
"Ya know, sometimes this Stargate travel isn't so bad," Jack commented as he was fed another piece of fruit by one of the *very* attentive women.
"Jack, aren't you in the least bit curious what they meant by Sam being a 'tribute'? I mean, for all we know they're looking sacrifice her!" Daniel proclaimed, trying to politely fend off the fawning women.
"I do not believe they will do such a thing," Teal'c stated, surprising his teammates by speaking for the first time since they had arrived on the planet.
"And why's that?" Jack queried. "I have heard of such planets, kept by various System Lords as a means of... 'recreation'." The two humans looked rather astonished at Teal'c's statement.
"So, this planet is basically like a... brothel?" Daniel wondered.
"'Brothel'?" Teal'c repeated, confused.
"A place where women perform... 'favors' in exchange for payment of some sort. In this case, perhaps it is simply to live peaceably." Teal'c nodded his understanding. He went to speak, but stopped as the door to the room opened, admitting the second woman who had spoken earlier, and seconds later, a prodded in Samantha Carter. All three men seemed to straighten up as soon as they saw their teammate. She looked uninjured, but most definitely annoyed and mildly embarrassed. And that was most likely due to what she was wearing. Or barely wearing.
Capt. Samantha Carter was dressed in a very unmilitary-like outfit. The dress from Simarka didn't hold a candle to the gauzy, midriff baring number she wore now.
"My Lords, we have brought you the tribute. We hope that you are pleased with our efforts," the woman said, bowing her head.
"Uh, yeah, it's great," Jack commented, the other two at a loss for words. Sam shot him a look that would have killed a lesser man. The woman who had brought her in did not miss the look.
"Dare you look so at your gods?" she questioned, appalled. Sam turned to face the woman.
"Look it, I've been nice up 'til now..." Sam's words were cut off with a slap to her face. Her eyes went wide in anger.
"How dare you be so impudent! The gods treat us well, you should be happy to be a tribute! And you should treat those who are your betters with respect!" Carter looked to be on the verge of causing very permanent damage to this woman, so the colonel jumped up and grabbed her arm, just to be on the safe side. Sam looked at his hand, then at his face. His expression basically told her to cool it.
"Don't worry about this, uh, 'tribute'. We'll deal with her," Jack told the woman.
"Of course my Lord. We shall leave you to do what is necessary." All the women were led out, and then the woman who had spoken shut the door behind them, leaving SG1 alone.
"Are you going to let go of my arm, or do I have to help you remove it, *sir*?" Carter queried when O'Neill hadn't removed his hand from her arm. He did as he was asked, then moved back to sit down.
"Can you believe this place? It seems like it's some sort of..."
"'Brothel'. Yeah, Teal'c told us about it," O'Neill replied. Sam looked at the Jaffa in surprise.
"I have heard of such places, but never have I seen one until this day," he explained. Sam nodded in comprehension.
"So, when are we getting out of here?" she asked.
"Well, there's still some exploring to do," Daniel replied.
"What!? What is there to explore in this... this... 'place'."
"C'mon, Carter, it's not that bad."
"If you're a guy, sure, it's great!" The three men sighed, knowing she was right.
"And one of them did say when we arrived that they hadn't been expecting their 'gods' so soon. That could mean that they are expecting some Goa'uld visitors. And I for one don't want to be here when they come visiting." Realization dawned on the other three's faces. They certainly couldn't handle any Goa'ulds with their limited firepower. Maybe it would be a good idea to get going. The colonel stood up again, grabbing his gear.
"Alright Captain, you win. Let's get a move on. We don't know how long until these Goa'ulds will show up." Daniel and Teal'c got up and put their gear on, heading to the door with Jack where Sam waited. Jack reached to open the door, but Sam stopped him.
"Sir, I wouldn't mind getting my uniform back," she said, indicating her outfit.
"We'll see what we can do, but if they're expecting visitors..."
"Understood, sir. I just feel a little... lacking in clothing." Jack couldn't stop a smile, which didn't go unnoticed by the others. He put his gear down and undid his jacket, taking it off and handing it to the captain. She took it from him, giving him a grateful look. Once she had it on, O'Neill opened the door. they were greeted with the expectant faces of several women.
"My Lords?" the first woman wondered.
"We need to go," Jack replied.
"So soon? Have we displeased you? Or is it this tribute that has caused your displeasure?" she asked, mildly confused.
"Uh, no, no, nothing like that. We only meant to stay briefly, until we had to return to battle," Daniel explained. The women nodded in understanding, but had expressions of disappointment.
"We will take care of this tribute while you are away, making her more fitting," another woman commented, moving towards Carter. Jack stepped in front of the captain.
"No, that's okay, we're taking her with us."
"As a ploy, to fool our enemies. It will teach her a lesson," Teal'c interjected, gaining surprised looks from his colleagues, but the women nodded in fear. Obviously this was not an unusual punishment.
"We wish you well, my Lords, and a safe journey into battle," the first woman said.
After getting Carter's clothes and gear, and with a final chorus of thank yous, SG1 left the building they had been led to and made their way to the Stargate.
"Dismissed," General Hammond declared. SG1 got up as a group and left the conference room, Sam and Jack in front, and Teal'c and Daniel right behind them. They had just finished debriefing about their visit to P4Z 323, a somewhat dull, yet mildly intriguing planet. At least for the male members of the team it was intriguing. Sam was just happy to be back in her uniform and would rather not think of the place again. It was not one of her more shining moments, as far as she was concerned. Unfortunately for her, 'the boys' kept discussing it.
"I wonder if it was a brothel in the truest sense of the word?" Daniel mused aloud.
"Daniel, you dog! And here I thought you were all pure and chaste!" Jack joked. Sam groaned, gaining the colonel's attention.
"You have something to add, Sam?" he queried, a smile playing on his lips.
"Aw, c'mon, I know you're dying to saying something," he goaded.
"I don't know about 'dying'..."
"It's just... when you said 'pure and chaste', it made me think of those women and how they dressed. Sort of like the vestal virgins..." she trailed off as she saw huge grins appear on Daniel and Jack's faces. Teal'c looked curious, but said nothing.
"So you think they are...?" Daniel began.
"I don't... I mean, I didn't exactly *ask*, but by the way they dressed, it just made me think of that."
"Guess you could've taught them a thing or two as a 'tribute', eh?" Jack grinned even wider, if that was possible, putting his right arm across Sam's shoulders as they entered the computer lab. Sam suddenly noticed that Daniel and Teal'c had disappeared from behind them. She looked at Jack suspiciously, but his expression seemed guileless.
"Seems we lost Teal'c and Daniel," Sam pointed out. Jack looked behind, then looked back at her.
"Guess so." Sam watched him for a moment again. He still seemed sincere, and he kept his arm across her shoulders in an almost companionable way. She couldn't help but feel her guard going down.
"You never did answer my question," Jack stated. Up went her guard again.
"About..." she started, pretending to be uninformed. Jack smiled, leaning in closer.
"You know," he said, barely above a whisper. Her guard was slipping once again. Sam felt herself drawn in by his eyes. She had never really notice until this moment what a beautiful shade of brown they were.
"I suppose I could," she replied before she could stop herself. In a way she was answering both his previous question and his statement. But from the smile on Jack's face, it was obvious he interpreted as the former. He kept smiling, but this time there was no longer mischief in his eyes. There was a more serious look to them.
Jack began to test his limits with Sam even more as he slowly pulled her toward him. Sam didn't resist, she actually leaned into him.
Jack's expression softened. He almost stopped himself when he started to feel like he was taking advantage of Sam, but before he knew it, her lips met his, sending electric shocks through his system. Jack went to deepen the kiss, but he felt Sam starting to shake, then she finally pulled away from the kiss, giggling.
"I'm sorry," she apologized in between giggles. Jack moved away from her, crossing his arms in front of his chest.
"Kissing me amuses you?" he asked, trying not to sound hurt. He failed. Sam stopped giggling, giving him a placating look.
"Sir," she began, her tone mothering, "it's not that at all."
"Then what is it." Almost an order, definitely not a question. Sam considered it for a moment before answering.
"It's just that... I guess the situation seemed... not exactly real to me. I certainly never expected to... you know, after..." Sam sighed. This should be easy, she thought. But no, she had to sound like a babbling moron. "What I'm trying to say is that even though the thought *may* have crossed my mind, I never really thought it would happen after previous, um, events. And for some reason I... got the giggles because of that." As she finished talking, the smile that had been on Jack's face earlier returned.
"So, you've thought about kissing me?" He sounded like a giddy child. His change in attitude gave her a boost.
"In passing," she replied, teasing. She moved past him and he followed as she headed out the door.
"How many times?"
Sam stopped briefly, smiling mysteriously, then continued on her way, leaving O'Neill momentarily behind.
"Daring me to find out, eh? We'll have to see about that," Jack thought aloud. He quickly followed after the retreating captain, eager to take on this new challenge.