She couldn't stand outside the door for much longer holding the Styrofoam box without looking suspicious. Enough people had already passed her in the hall that she was starting to get more than a little nervous. Finally, her grumbling stomach made the decision and she knocked. 'Please god let him be anywhere else.'

"Come in."

Damn. Double damn. Damn it! She turned the knob and opened to door to find him looking through a stack of folders. She decided to wait until he noticed it was her before saying anything. She didn't really know what to say, or what she was even doing here. Well, she knew what she was doing here, but why she was doing it...

Still engrossed in finding whatever it was he was looking for, it took him a minute to realize someone was standing in his office. Not letting go of his place in the stack of paper, he barked, "What?!"

Somewhat amused at his lack of organization, she replied with a bit of laughter creeping into her voice, "I can come back later if you're busy, Sir."

His fingers lost their place in the folders he had been sorting through as he turned in his chair to find her standing there with the box. She had come. He matched the laughter he found in her eyes, "Do you find something funny here, Major?"

She took a few steps closer and set the box down on a table just in time to catch a stack of files that had been leaning precariously toward the floor. As they landed in her arms with a 'thump' she let out a laugh, "Yes, as a matter of fact, I do." At exactly that moment, another leaning stack lost its balance and spread all over the top of his desk that had already been covered in papers to begin with.

He groaned. Trying to file his files was a mistake from the beginning. And trying to concentrate on anything while she was in the room was definitely a mistake. The only reason he managed to do it off-world was because he knew one misstep could cost them their lives. But on earth, it was an entirely different matter. Gesturing to his desk, but meaning more than that, he asked, "Is it hopeless?"

She thought for a moment and then said with a quiet seriousness, "Nothing is hopeless."

It was sinking in. She had actually come with the cake. He hadn't really expected her to, but at the same time, he hoped she would. There was that word again- 'hope.' It was like 'faith' or a 'belief' of some kind. Words and ideas like those were outside of his black and white existence. But there wasn't anything black or white about her- she was golden and blue and cream and light. A very bright light. Maybe that was hope after all. "Hungry?" He nodded toward the box.

A small, nervous smile held her lips, "I think so." But she couldn't move. It was everything she wanted and everything she feared all waiting for her in the shape of a triangular piece of cheesecake.

Realizing the filing wasn't going anywhere fast anytime soon, he wiped a few more onto the floor and cleared a space for the box. He could feel her indecision from across the room, 'Sam, we don't have to do this now. I don't want you to feel pressured. I just wanted you to know that I was willing-"

"If not now, when?" She wasn't trying to be funny or dramatic, but it was true. If not right here and right now, then when would they? It was never going to get easier. It was never going to not be against regulations. She was never going to not be in love with him. She moved closer to him, forgetting the cheesecake.

His eyes locked with hers as she came closer. He stood waiting for her to reach him.

Inches apart, breathing strained, both unsure, both wanting. Then it happened. Her stomach rumbled. Not a little, not quietly. But loudly, and long. Her hands immediately covered her tummy as if that could stop the noise. Her face flushed, and she couldn't help but giggle.

"Skipped breakfast, did you?" He cracked a huge grin.

"Sorry." She was a little glad that the moment had been broken. It felt too intense- the timing was off, and the place couldn't have been more wrong.

He reached for the box, and opened it. Handing her a fork, "Ladies first."

"Thanks." She took a bite and looked up to see him smiling at her. "What?" She took another bite.

"You have to admit it's kind of funny." He sat back down in his chair. "Doesn't it feel sometimes like everything is against us?"

"Sometimes?!?!" She put the box down and swallowed her bite. "When has it ever felt any other way?"

"I guess you're right. Maybe that should tell us something?"

Was he changing his mind? "Is it telling you something?"

"Yeah, I guess it is."

She could actually feel her heart breaking. "Oh."

"I think it means we must really have something worth fighting for."

"Oh." The pieces of her heart reconnected as she processed what he was telling her. She smiled, "I think so, too."

"Maybe we should try this somewhere else. After you've eaten."

She had a feeling he was never going to let her forget her untimely stomach growl, "That would be nice." She picked up the box and headed for the door.

"Hey! You were supposed to share that, you know!" He couldn't even pretend to be angry at her. His smile spread across his whole face.

She turned around and was caught off guard at the sight of her normally very reserved CO really smiling. Not a half-assed, lop-sided grin or a sarcastic smirk, but an actually happy smile. Had she really put that there? Her stomach was doing flips, and not just because it was still hungry. "Sorry, Sir., but you wouldn't want to deprive me of the most important meal of the day now would you?"

"I would hardly consider cheesecake an important source of vitamins and minerals, Major."

"But think of the calcium- very important for a woman my age."

"Whatever. See if I bring you anymore desserts to 'share'."

"Don't worry. Next time, I'll provide the dessert." She winked and walked down the hall.

He *so* couldn't wait for 'next time.'

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