Title: “The Date”
Status: Complete – part of series
Sequel/Series Info: “Strength and Courage”
CONTENT LEVEL: 13+
Content Warnings: none
Summary: The title is self-evident. Jack and Janet go on their first “real” date.
Disclaimer: Stargate SG-1 and its characters are the property of Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, and Gekko Productions This story has been written for entertainment purposes only and no money whatsoever has exchanged hands. No copyright infringement is intended. All original characters are my own - yada yada yada - In other words - I don't own these guys. I never will....I just like to play with them now and then.
Feedback: Yes Please. Constructive Criticism to improve my craft is appreciated. Flames are not.
File Size: 43 kb
Archive: Please ask
Author’s Notes: This story takes place about 4 weeks after the events of the previous stories in the series, “Realization” and “Consequences”.
My thanks, as always, to Wendy for her beta-read and help.
Just a reminder that the title of this series comes from a quote by by Lao Tzu.
"Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength,
While loving someone deeply gives you courage."
Janet Fraiser sat in the audience of the symphony, her eyes riveted on the stage where the musicians were playing a selection from Hans Schumann. Janet had been surprised to find one more thing she Jack O’Neill had in common; they both loved classical music. Jack had purchased tickets this performance of the touring Venetian Symphony months ago. The performance was already sold out when Janet had tried to get tickets, so she had been thrilled to be invited to enjoy the symphony is his company
Ordinarily Jack O’Neill would have been spell-bound by the music, but he was paying very little attention to the performers. Jack’s eyes were focussed on the profile of his date, and his thoughts were far away from the ‘Venetian Symphony.’ Over the past few weeks, O’Neill had started spending friendly evenings with Doctor Janet Fraiser. General Hammond might have thought that a slow friendship was in the works, but Jack O’Neill was beginning to recognize that the last time he had felt this way about someone he had been very close to asking Sara to marry him. He was scared that time, but with Janet there was no fear. O’Neill realized that Janet Fraiser made him feel complete. Though his date’s attention was focused on the stage, Jack’s attention was focussed solely on her.
Doctor Janet Fraiser loved the symphony. As a child her home had been filled with music. Janet’s parents had both been classical musicians, and had a dream that their children would follow in their footsteps and take their place in the world of music. Janet had been forced to take violin classes. She had the skill to play, and her parents dream was that she become first violinist in an orchestra. That was not Janet’s dream. The truth was that as much as she loved music, she played the instrument only to please her parents Janet loved the outdoors, and loved to play with the other kids in the neighbourhood. It wasn’t easy for her. While other children in area played baseball or basketball, her family would not allow her to take part. ‘You must protect your hands at all times’ they insisted. This was anathema for the energetic dynamo that Janet Fraiser was. She was happier outside, a tomboy who loved climbing trees and games of tag with the other kids. To please her parents Janet spent the required hours practicing violin, but her heart knew that this was not her dream. She was given her reprieve in the first year of high school when her parents were told bluntly that Janet did not have the “hands” to ever be first violinist. She had applied for Julliard at their insistence, and been turned down.
Janet’s parents had been devastated, but not Janet. Although she tried to disguise it from them, all Janet felt was relief. She now had the time and permission to focus her energy on the things that interested her. She joined Venturers, began to volunteer at a local hospital, and she excelled in her studies. Janet had realized long ago that the dream of being a violinist had not been hers. She was now free to pursue her dream with a vengeance. Janet Fraiser wanted to be a doctor.
Janet focussed all the energy that had been reluctantly spent on the violin onto her new passion, not realizing that her parents encouraged it only because they thought that she was devastated by the destruction of their dream. They did not realize that this new dream would hold even greater passion and fulfillment than would ever have been available otherwise. Janet Fraiser had a capable mind, an ability to care for others compassionately, and an inner drive to make life better for people. Those parts of her would never have been satisfied by the performance of a symphony. But that didn’t stop her from enjoying the music, and she was lost in the beauty of the arrangement.
As Jack O’Neill sat in the symphony he gazed at the woman next to him. His heart was full of joy. An idea began to form in the back of his mind. Over the last few weeks they had spent a lot of time together as friends. They had decided that they wanted to be sure that however this relationship worked out they would be able to remain friends. They did not want to lose that. This was the first outing that had not included Cassie or members of SG1 – It was the first evening that could even remotely be called ‘a date.’ Jack closed his eyes for a moment, taking a deep breath of Janet’s perfume. O’Neill knew that this had already gone far beyond “just friendship” for him.
Jack made himself a promise to do whatever it took to get to know Dr. Janet Fraiser a lot better. There was something about her that made him a better person just by being with her. He opened his eyes again, and focussed on the stage, reaching over to grasp Janet’s small hand within his own.
Janet’s attention was drawn away from the symphony by the Colonel’s touch. She looked down at the hand covering hers, and smiled. Then she turned to gaze at Jack. He was watching the orchestra intently. It gave her a moment to think about things. Jack was so different than her ex-husband, Bob, who had insisted that his needs take priority over hers in everything. Janet’s career was important to her. She knew Jack O’Neill understood that. He would not make her choose between her military career and her relationship with him. He understood the dedication she had to her job, and the responsibility she felt for the health of those she served with. Yet, he saw past all of that to the woman she was beneath. Janet Fraiser was a dichotomy of woman and warrior doctor; Jack O’Neill understood that, and was willing to accept her that way. It made her think of the possibility of sharing more of her life with him.
Lately she had been aware that there were other officers at the mountain that were able to serve their country completely without it destroying their marriage. Doctor Warner had a wife and 4 children. She had been over at their house. She knew how much they really loved each other. The more she thought about it, the more she thought she could do this.
Spending time with Jack these past few weeks had been wonderful. It was already a better relationship than she had ever had with Bob. Jack O’Neill cared about every aspect of her life. He wanted to be friends, and more. Janet Fraiser knew that if there was any chance, she wanted this particular person in her life on a long term basis.
Jack looked over, and caught Janet staring at him. He leaned over and kissed her forehead. “Are you enjoying the performance Jan?” he whispered. Janet nodded. She leaned closer to him. She rested her head against his shoulder as they both turned to observe the final movements of the symphony.
After the performance was over Jack helped Janet on with her coat. Would you like to grab something to eat?” he asked, not wanting the evening to end. “I would love that.” Janet answered. “I hear that “Le Chocolatarie” offers a great dessert package for the after theatre crowd. Why don’t we head there?” Janet asked. Jack grinned broadly, glad that the evening was not ending. “That sounds like a great idea!” he said eagerly.
The two soldiers lingered over their food, talking easily with one another. It was a beautiful spring evening, and they ate out on the patio. They talked and laughed, enjoying each others company. The time sped by. A while later Jack and Janet heard a waiter make a slightly impatient sound. They looked around to realize that they were the last patrons at the restaurant. They had talked until closing time. Janet looked at her watch in shock. They had been there for over two hours, and it had seemed to pass in a flash. “I need to get home, Jack.” She said. “I have a staff meeting scheduled for first thing in the morning.”
Jack nodded, glancing at his own watch – “and you promised the Major you’d be home before .” He said, reluctantly. “I’d better get you there before you turn into a pumpkin.”
Jack’s attention was on the road, but his awareness was focussed on Janet as her drove her home. Jack knew that he had to let her know where he stood tonight. As he pulled into her driveway, he said. “Wait, Janet. We need to talk.” It had gone beyond friendship for him. He had to know if this could work.
Jack took a deep breath, and looked over at his companion. “Janet, I’ve loved going out as your friend. But what I feel for you goes a lot deeper than friendship.” Janet began to interrupt, but Jack held up one finger in an “Ah gesture that was familiar, and said, “let me finish.” He took a deep breath. “These past few months have been wonderful. I really care for you, and I want to spend more and more time with you. This isn’t a game to me.” Jack said quietly.
O’Neill took a deep breath, and continued. “You KNOW how I feel about you. If there isn’t a chance, I need to know. Janet, I don’t want my heart to be broken again. I can walk away now, if you want me to. We can just be friends. We won’t ever lose that – but I have to tell my heart not to move closer if you don’t want this.” Jack looked down his hands, clenched on the steering wheel. He looked back at her, letting every emotion he felt show on his face. “I want you to know where I stand.” Jack said candidly He chuckled sheepishly as he continued, “Janet, the only thing that comes to mind seems so fifties. Will you go steady with me?”
Janet looked up at Jack. He caught his breath when he looked into her eyes and saw the depth of love there. He reached out one hand to hers, and carefully moved into her space. “Jack, I think we both have a second chance.” she said, taking his hand. “We’ve both been thinking about this - a lot” she admitted. “I don’t want my heart to be broken either. But I think you’re right. We talked once about taking a chance. But it’s not a chance with you and me – it’s reality. If going steady means going out with one person exclusively –we’ve already been doing that for a long time. You’re the only man that I’ve ever really wanted to spend this amount of time with. I think we’ve been going steady already, haven’t we?” Janet smiled.
They got out of the truck, and Jack walked Janet to her front door. Jack leaned over to kiss the top of her head. Janet tilted her face up and caught his lips in a promise of better things to come. “Jack,” she said simply. “We’ve done what the General asked. We have moved cautiously. I think the time has come to tell our friends about that our friendship has turned into a relationship. Are you ready for that?”
Jack’s face beamed his answer. “Hell, Yeah!” he exploded, with a grin. “We’ll have them over to a barbecue at my place on Saturday. We’ll let them know then.”
Janet’s face was radiant with joy. She and stood on her tip-toes to kiss Jack’s cheek. This time he moved his face and kissed her lips tenderly – for a moment, and then hungrily, as if afraid that this evening was all a dream and this kiss would make it real. Janet responded with increasing ardour. Their first kiss had been a tentative exploration of their new relationship. It had been wonderful, but in paled in comparison to this one. This kiss was an earth-shattering and sensual expression of commitment and passion. It involved the understanding that whatever happened - this relationship would be explored. When they parted each felt that they had had a glimpse into the others soul. Janet and Jack knew that this was only the first step on a journey that they hoped would last forever. Janet felt she had finally found a man who would let her be the intelligent independent strong woman she was. Jack felt that Janet would be the soul-mate who would journey with him along the paths of life. They both knew that they had found the person of their dreams, and they felt totally at ease with one another. That, in itself, was rare enough that the whole evening seemed unforgettable.
Janet turned and opened her door, clasping Jack’s hand one last time. He raised her hand to face, and grazed her knuckles with his lips. “Saturday,” she said gently. Jack smiled, and nodded as the door shut behind her. Then he couldn’t help himself. He punched the air, and grunted “Hoo-Rah” in his best military fashion, before turning and walking down the steps with a bounce in his step and grin so wide that it would have surprised any of the young airmen under his command. Colonel Jack O’Neill looked almost – happy. He felt happier than he had felt anytime since the death of Charlie so many years before. Jack knew that this time he was going to do things right. This was going to be forever. Jack drove home, filled with hope for the future. He knew what he wanted. He knew she wanted it too. This time he would do it right. All they had to do was get General Hammond to agree.