Title: The Object of Hate
Author: Patricia (‘Tricia’) Byrne
Category: Sam & Jack Angst
CONTENT LEVEL : 13+
Content Warning: minor language
Season/Sequel info: End of Season 5, Sequel/Companion piece to Hate.
Summary: Sam goes through a much needed emotional breakdown after Daniel’s “death”.
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters and places are the property of MGM, World Gekko Corp and Double Secret productions. This piece of fan fiction was created for entertainment not monetary purposes and no infringement on copyrights or trademarks was intended. Previously unrecognized characters and places, and this story, are copyrighted to the author. Any similarity to real persons, living or deceased, is coincidental and not intended by the author.
Author’s notes: Ok, Hate was the culmination of a long, horrible train ride, no sleep for Tricia L, and the incessant desire to kill someone or just have them die… This one came about thanks to some pushy, er… ‘friendly nudges’ from friends.
Thanks go out to: Aud, Susan, AJ, and Ruth who all took the time to look this over and give opinions. Special thanks, as always to Dee (the other half of my brain) for her role as my ‘wonderbeta’ J You’re great!!
Copyright © Patricia M. Byrne, 2003
‘The Object of Hate’
Jack O’Neill could tell by her eyes that she hated him. She hated every fiber of his being. Hated what he’d done, hated who he was, hated his position in life and in the military. In the past five plus years he had come to know her well and it was extremely clear that Major Samantha Carter was supremely pissed. And her anger and hatred was directed at no one else but him, Colonel Jack O’Neill.
He sat there and stared at the beer bottle in his hand. Without much effort, he could come up with plenty of reasons of why she could hate him. Hell, the list could go on for miles if he really put his mind to it. The fact that he’d had to shoot her, very nearly killing her, when that energy being thing had taken control of her body. The way he’d acted around her when he finally got home from Edora after she’d spent three months trying to save his sorry ass. The way he’d been so damned blind to their feelings up until the time when the confessions needed to be made with the whole Xanax thing, and of course Anise just had to be there. The way he’d hidden from them the secret mission he’d been sent on when he retired, again. The way he’d been so callous and made that Dorothy crack after she’d killed Seth. The way he’d turned away from her on so many occasions, with Orlin, after they’d gotten their memories back and no longer thought they were Jonah and Thera…the list could go on and on. The way he bottled everything up, including this—including letting Danny go.
Damn, he’d been such an ass. An ass to all of them, but even more of an ass to her.
He knew that she probably blamed herself as well. She’d think that since she was the scientist she was the one that should have been there. She should have been observing their experiment. Daniel, being the archeologist, would have had loads of other things that he could have been doing. But Daniel was the one who had fought to stay, who had insisted that Sam was needed elsewhere. The decision had been easy.
He knew Daniel wasn’t really dead. Not really. He had ascended, glowed into non-existence. But he hadn’t come back. Hadn’t shown himself to anyone after asking, no begging, Jack to let him go. He hadn’t even bothered to say goodbye to anyone else. Not Teal’c, not Sam, not Janet, no one. He was gone, and he was never coming back. So, for all intents and purposes, he was dead. And for that, if nothing else, she would hate him.
He glanced over at her, out of the corner of his eye. Watching her staring at the empty beer bottle in her hand. They had all had several more than usual today. The day had, well, sucked. But after everything was done there had been a virtual understanding among them. It was something that everyone just knew. No words needed to be spoken. So, they had converged on his house. Sam, Teal’c, Janet, and even General Hammond and ‘Dad’ had made a brief appearance at the makeshift wake, arriving with beer. Lots and lots of beer. And still hardly a word had been uttered the whole night.
The most that had been said was when the general and the senior Carter had left. Moving around the room making their goodbyes, sharing condolences, and giving each other “time”. But time wasn’t what they needed. Wasn’t what she needed. She’d need, no, she’d want answers. Answers from him about why. Why let him go? Why let him die? Why give up on him? Give up on them and their ability to help him? Answers he wasn’t sure that he could give…
Everyone had done their best. Janet had done more than anyone would have initially thought possible. Sam had attempted to help using the Goa’uld healing device. Even ‘Dad’ and Selmak had tried, done all they could. But the damage was too extensive… if they’d only gotten there sooner, if she’d been able to help with the device, if he hadn’t let Daniel go… But this was what Daniel wanted. Daniel had asked, had begged him to let him go. Had asked him to make the others understand and do the same. Something Jack knew, just by the look in her eyes, he had failed at miserably.
Sam stood up and walked, as best she could, into the kitchen. He could hear her throwing yet another empty bottle into the bin and opening the fridge door to fetch a new one. Listening intently he heard her swiftly open it and make her way back to the entrance of his living room.
Standing in the doorway, he watched her as she took everyone in. Teal’c, was looking stoic as always, could have been kel-no-reeming for all he knew. Janet, well, the good doctor looked as though she might have passed out. Jack could only wish that sleep would come that easily for her.
And then there was him. He sat there, going back and forth between staring at his beer bottle and staring at her. He felt as though he’d lost his best friend, but more than just Daniel, her.
He saw himself, sitting there, almost as if he was seeing himself through her eyes. He wanted to cry, almost as much as he’d cried when he’d lost his son, but he wouldn’t. He wanted, no needed, to be comforted. Wanted to have her tell him that everything was ok, that it wasn’t his fault. But he couldn’t. Couldn’t do that, couldn’t ask that of her.
“I hate you, Jack.” She stated evenly.
His initial reaction was to look up and meet her in the eyes, surprised that she would address him by his first name. She never called him Jack.
At that statement though, everyone had turned to turned to look at them. Teal’c with his normally stoic expression only slightly altered to include the familiarly raised eyebrow. Janet, on the other hand, looked shocked and appalled by Sam’s statement, her red, puffy eyes wide and teary.
He felt the emotions pass over his face almost as quickly as they came. Hurt, anger, annoyance, but mostly understanding must have been all clear in his brown eyes. She was hurting. Of course she needed someone to blame. And of course, that person would be him. He’d just been waiting for the outburst.
This was how it always was. How it had been with Sara after Charlie had died. How it would always be with him and the people he cared for. He just wished he didn’t have to lose her too.
“I really hate you, Jack.” She pushed herself a step closer to him.
Janet sat fully upright and went to stand, “Sam, I –“
Sam put her hand up to stop her. “No, Janet. No.” She paused, and he could see her trying to blink back the tears that threatened to fall. “I need to say this. Need to get this all out.”
She turned back to him, and he watched her expression become as clear to him as ever. Showing him the conflicting emotions that he brought out in the otherwise strong, no nonsense, military woman.
“I hate you, Jack.”
His eyes closed briefly as the words hit home and stung.
“I hate how you’ve always covered your feelings for anyone that you’ve ever cared about. I hate how you let him stay there. Let Danny stay there. I hate how you would ALWAYS let him go on the foolhardy missions no matter how many times he got himself hurt or nearly killed. I hate how you were able to let him go, in the end.” She was crying now and anyone could tell that it was about so much more than Daniel. He said a silent prayer thanking whatever god had allowed her to keep her composure until after General Hammond and her father had left.
“I hate how you hide everything, as if the whole world is one huge Black Ops… thing… and you need to protect yourself. I hate how you expect everyone else to act the same damned way.” Jack stood warily and closed the remaining distance between them. Janet and Teal’c could have melted into the woodwork and neither he nor Sam would have noticed. “I hate the way you look, the way you smell, the way you feel….” She was sobbing uncontrollably now. “But more than anything else I hate the way you make me feel when I’m around you.”
He pulled her into his arms and buried his head in her hair, as her tears wet his shirt, echoing those that he shed inside. She grabbed onto his shirt, clutching at his chest as she finally released all of the pent up frustration, hostility, and sadness of losing loved ones that had probably been with her since her childhood.
She cried for what seemed like hours and probably was. Not knowing what else to do, but realizing that they weren’t going to get her disentangled from him very easily, Janet and Teal’c had helped him move her into the bedroom where they could both be more comfortable. Then, they had taken their leave. Janet placing a light, comforting, mother-like kiss on Sam’s head before turning to vacate the room.
At least, perhaps, crying herself to sleep would bring her some comfort. All he knew was that he couldn’t let go. Nothing would allow him to let go of her now, when he was sure she needed the comfort of his presence the most. He knew she had experienced way too much loss in her life, and even more since joining the SGC, she needed him, and he had every intention on being here for her.
Eventually, he’d felt her settle and relax. Finally, sleep had overtaken her. Shifting her slightly, he settled in with her nestled comfortably in his embrace, and welcomed the small amount of sleep that would come to him.
Several hours later, he awoke with the faint scent of lavender assaulting his nostrils, along with a few stray blonde hairs. He blinked a few times and wiggled his nose a little, hoping that he wouldn’t sneeze and disturb her. Sneezing was much more Daniel’s thing anyway.
Jack watched her sleep. She seemed so much more content than she had seemed the night before. He hoped that her breakdown, as unusual and infrequent as they were for her, had been exactly what she’d needed. And once again he sent up a silent prayer that Teal’c and Janet, their two closest friends left, had been the only two witnesses.
He felt her begin to stir. Watched her as she fought to open her eyes. Snuggling into him slightly before she finally looked up into his face. The smile that greeted her had been there for several minutes already.
She nodded. Then slowly, she moved her head, and he could tell she was taking in their surroundings. They were in bed. A huge comfy bed with a fluffy down comforter covering them and big fluffy pillows underneath them. Her head carefully and comfortably nestled in the crook of his arm, resting lightly on his shoulder.
He felt the need to explain, seeing the confused look that crossed her face as she looked around. “Sam, you were in NO condition to drive home last night and there was no way we were going to be able to pry you off of me, so I…”
“It’s okay.” She interrupted. He could tell that she had no desire to relive the events of her emotional breakdown the night before. Realizing just how much trouble she could be in, she quickly added, “Sir.”
He laughed, not a full laugh, but a laugh nonetheless. “Sir? Don’t you think formalities are a bit overdue, Samantha?”
She blushed and smiled slightly. “Yeah, I guess so.” She shifted and moved to the edge of the bed. “I should probably be going.”
Jack sat up and moved over to her side. “You don’t have to, Sam. Now that you’re feeling better, lay back and get some real sleep. I’ll flop on the couch for a bit and then make us some breakfast.”
She smiled and relented to his touch as he eased her back into the bed. She snuggled down and closed her eyes. He wasn’t sure what made him do it, but he couldn’t resist the urge to place a feather light kiss on her cheek as she appeared to be drifting off to sleep.
When he awoke the next time, it was due to the insistent rumblings in his stomach and a more annoying feeling slightly lower. Quickly heading to his hall bathroom to remedy one problem, he decided that a nice big breakfast was just what the doctor ordered the morning after an emotional breakdown, and swiftly set himself about to prepare one.
As he was flipping the last of the pancakes he heard the master bath’s sink start running, signaling that his guest was awake. Moments later, he was only slightly aware of her entering the kitchen, but chose to ignore it for the moment.
“Do you do this sort of thing every morning or just on mornings after a woman has a nervous breakdown in your living room?”
He turned around and smiled at her standing there, leaning against the doorframe with that slightly embarrassed smile, in her jeans and rumpled T-shirt from the night before. “Come on, Sam. There’s no reason to be embarrassed about that. We were all upset over Daniel; you just needed to lash out. The beer definitely didn’t help to reign in your feelings.”
She stepped toward him. “Jack, about the things I said last night…”
He once again closed the distance between them, bringing a single finger up to rest on her lips. “Sam. Don’t. You don’t need to.” He let his finger drop. “Just know this, no matter what, my feelings for you haven’t changed. You seemed to need to hear that last night.”
She smiled, softly. “I know, Jack… My feelings haven’t changed either. It’s just, well; sometimes it’s easier to hate you out loud, than love you in silence….”