by nanda (firstname.lastname@example.org)
"Colonel O'Neill! Colonel Carter!" The voice was surprised, female, rushed, and almost directly beside them. They'd been meandering back towards the car after dinner, window shopping a little in Old Colorado City, and had stopped in front of a closed antique store to admire some old maps of the Rockies. Tourists and locals passed them in a steady stream,
"Oh, hi, sergeant. How are you?" Jack said as he turned. Sam felt him try to pull his hand away, but held his fingers fast. She also caught the quick look he shot her and managed not to laugh.
"Sergeant Flores." Sam smiled at the young woman, who'd only been stationed at the SGC for a year. "Shopping after work?"
The sergeant looked down at the bags in her hand, and the cool fall wind rustled the tissue paper peeking out from the top of one. "My daughter's birthday this weekend. There's this great little toy shop on the corner of 26th."
"I know the place," Jack said. "Tell her we said happy birthday. How old will she be?"
"Six. Just started kindergarten. I'll tell her, thank you. And good luck at the Academy, sir."
Sam felt him shuffle a little nervously. "Thanks," he said. It ultimately hadn't been his choice to leave the SGC -- his left knee had finally given out for good. Sam had been there, had heard the grinding pop as he'd dived sideways, had covered him for the rest of the firefight despite his order to get back to the gate.
Flores was politely inching away. "Sorry, I have to go drive the babysitter home. See you tomorrow, Colonel Carter. Goodnight, Colonel O'Neill."
When they'd said goodbye and watched Flores turn the corner, Jack backed Sam up against the darkened window of the antique store. He pulled their hands, still joined, up between his face and hers. "Geez, Carter," he teased. "It's only been five days since I left! You ever hear of discretion?"
"Please. Most of the base is convinced we went home together after your going-away party."
She would not roll her eyes. She would not -- oh, screw it. Men. Completely clueless. Even the tall, beautiful one standing in front of her, whose hips were not quite close enough for comfort.
"You mean," he said, pressing a little closer, "they all think I already got lucky?"
She narrowly avoided a smile. "Some of them probably think you got lucky years ago."
His other hand came up to touch her cheek and she watched his eyes crinkle. "True. So, Carter." God, he was such a flirt -- she'd somehow managed to forget (repress?) that over the last few years. "Any thoughts on when I will get lucky?"
"Well," she very consciously flirted right back, "we did agree to take it slowly."
"Five days isn't slow?"
"Three dates is kinda fast."
"Seven years is a long time."
She tilted her head, considering this. Their hands had fallen onto his chest and he was rubbing her skin with his thumb. "Hmmm. You bring up a good point. Well, if you play your cards right ..."
Okay, she was really going to have to learn not to laugh at his terrible jokes. Really. She was. Someday. It only encouraged him. Of course, encouraging him had worked pretty much in her favor so far.
She dropped a quick kiss on his lips, to hide her laugh, then tugged him toward the car -- slowly, because he still walked with a limp. "I'll kick your ass at poker and you know it."
He was wearing what was, without a doubt, the goofiest O'Neill grin she had ever seen. "Can't wait."