Two Birds With One Stone
Disclaimer: Stargate SG-1 and its characters are the property of Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, and Gekko Productions. I have written this story for entertainment purposes only and no money whatsoever has exchanged hands. No copyright infringement is intended. The original characters, situations, and story are the property of the author(s).
I look at him and cannot help but grieve. I have lost two friends, not just one. To have this happen to Sam is like a kick in the gut, and I am saddened beyond all comprehension. But, Jesus, to have to deal with Jack like this again. I don't know if I can do it. I don't know if I can bring him back again. General Hammond and Teal'c don't know Jack like I know Jack. Even Sam, I think, was clueless about Jack O'Neill pre-SGC. Jack O'Neill that went to Abydos with me. The one who didn't care if he lived or died, and really didn't much care about anything else, either. I met that Jack. That is my Jack. I know him. I know him very well, and I like to forget about him whenever I can. He rears his ugly head from time to time, but mostly the Jack we now know is not that Jack. I can see him coming on with a vengeance today, though. Jack O'Neill is shutting down. Totally and completely. Sealing himself off from the rest of the world with multiple layers of security. I don't think we can stop it. A meltdown is in full force.
You would have to be a blithering idiot to not see what Sam meant to Jack. I don't even think he knows entirely how he feels about her, but there is definitely something there that I don't need a Zatarc detector to tell me about. Jack cares for Sam. More than as a teammate. I like to think we all care about each other as family. I know I do. Jack, Sam, and Teal'c are like the family taken from me. I would do anything for them. But Jack and Sam, well, for reasons that are completely beyond me, they just fit. Jack is one lucky bastard. I was too busy grieving Sha're to notice her at first, but come on, Samantha Carter is a hell of a catch. Add her brains to the looks, and, well...damn. I never entertained the notion of she and I, though, because, well, we're just friends. Really. I mean, stranger things have happened, but almost from the beginning, it was obvious that she and Jack, well, had a thing. Neither would act on it, of course. Far too professional and all that. But it was there. No question. At least not for me.
So, obviously, the events of the last, what-few hours?-are devastating Jack. If this goes down like I think it will, I think SG-1 is toast. Really. Jack will totally lose it. And Sam is gone. I can't go on without them. The loss of one, maybe, but both...I don't think I can do it. And, rest assured, it is both that are lost to us. It's even worse because I have to watch Jack slip from us like so much water through my fingers. I know Jack and I have our moments, but he is like a brother and best friend to me. I don't want to do this without him. I don't think I can. As for Teal'c, well, I don't think he will stick around without Jack, either. I know he pledged his loyalty to Earth, but really it's to Jack. And, well, I think Jack, as we know him, is gone. The entity took him with it when it took Sam from us.
Jack doesn't let anyone in easily. He knows it makes him vulnerable, and that is somewhere he doesn't want to be. Always the warrior, Jack. Always looking for the upper hand, the advantage. Doesn't want to be put into a compromised position. So, he doesn't let himself care easily. But, oh, when he does. It is deep and unfathomable. The loss of Charlie nearly killed him. There is a limit to what a man can be expected to take in this life. This, well, I just don't know.....
The entity called him on it. Even a computer based life form can see how we all care for Sam, but especially Jack. It said he wouldn't kill her body. Oh, I don't think you know him. I think he can, and he will if he has to. He isn't here anymore, and he will do what he thinks he has to do to make things right again. Oh, please, whatever you are, don't push him.
They let me talk to it. I thought things were going well, but dammit, Jack had to step in. I never should have allowed him in here for this. Not that I could have stopped him. He hasn't left here since the download, or whatever you want to call it, happened. Nothing short of a nuke would have kept him out of here. But dammit, why now, Jack? Why did you have to lose your temper now?
What the hell are you doing? God, you are such a jackass. No pun intended. Seriously, I see what you are trying to do, but why can't you just be peaceful for once? Why does it always have to be so hard with you? Oh, right, Jack O'Neill is hurting so he has to hurt others back. Lash out like the frightened child that he is. It was just trying to survive, Jack. Like you wouldn't do what you had to do to live. But it took Sam from you. It took the one thing you can't live without. The one thing you can't even acknowledge that you can't live without. And that scares the ever loving shit out of you, doesn't it? You're scared, because you let someone in so close that she hurt you. Again. And when you hurt, you hurt back. Well done, Jack.
Well, Hammond, military man that he is, seemed to go along with your strategy, such as it is, but I know what you are doing, Jack. This may seem like a nice tactical plan to get what we need, but I know it is all you. There is no cunning ruse here. This is just you, trying to scare it like it scared you. But, I'll give you this, it seems to be working. And I'll take that. Anything to get her, and you, back.
You shot her. With a zat. Twice. Jesus, Jack, you didn't have to. I would have done it. I know you think I am soft and weak, but I would have done it. We had to. The Sam we knew was long gone, anyway, and it was what had to be done. But you didn't have to. I would have done it. I don't think I am alone in this, but all I can say is that I would have done it. Really. You didn't have to. Shit, shit, shit. I can't believe this. I lose Sam, and now I have no doubt that I have lost you, too. How am I supposed to grieve for one friend when I can't seek comfort from another? From my closest friend in the world? From the most important person in my world? Yes, I said it. You may be an ass, but I love you, Jack O'Neill. You are the only one who has been with me since the beginning. You knew me before I was a soldier boy, so to speak. When I really was a geek. I need you to get through this. I need my friend to help me. And I want to help him. And I know that I won't be able to. I know you will shut me out. Like you always do.
We could get through this together, but alone, I just don't know. I'll be ok, but I know you, Jack. I know how appealing a bullet can be for you sometimes. I'm worried. Why did you have to do it yourself, you self-centered bastard? I would have done it. Then you could have blamed me and not yourself. You could have been angry with me instead of swallowing it all inside and letting it smolder until you are consumed with a grief and a guilt so profound that you can't even function.
I see you at her bedside. A shell of who you were. You try to act big, but you aren't fooling anyone, least of all me. I can see it in the set of your shoulders and in your eyes. Dead Jack is back. Hello again. I didn't miss you.
*******what the hell?********um...ok, then*********oh, please, please, please*********
Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you. Thank you, Sam. Thank you, Janet. Thank you, Teal'c, for being the protective one this time. And thank you to whoever else is listening. To whatever Gods are really out there. Sam is back with us. I don't even want to think about how this is possible, but I don't care. SG-1 is plus one Major Samantha Carter again. I will take it anyway I can get it. I need my friends back. And by saving Sam, I get Jack, too. I'll take it...anyway I can get it.
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