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Title: A Solid Foundation
Author name: Icarus
Author email: email@example.com
Pairing: Jack/Daniel, or Jack and Daniel
Summary: Carter asks some personal questions. Vignette set in season one.
DISCLAIMER: The characters and universe contained in this story are Copyright MGM, Showtime, Gekko, Double Secret. No infringement on their copyright is implied, and the author relinquishes all right to litigation should a future storyline coincide with this story in any way (and in fact I would be quick pleased if the Jack and Daniel relationship developed in this way - though I doubt the Air Force would be happy). Copyright © 2004 by Icarus Ancalion. All rights reserved. This story may not be reproduced in whole or part without the author's explicit permission. Ask, guys. I'm easy to reach and usually quite generous.
Author notes: Completely unbeta'd.
A Solid Foundation
"What is there between you and Daniel?"
Carter's deep blue eyes were full of concern, and the question seemed odd and out of place in the noisy sports bar. But no one was listening here. Her beer was virtually untouched, while Jack studied the ring of foam clinging to the bottom of his glass. He set it down with a clunk on the table.
He sighed into his hands, rubbed his temples, and decided, All right. If Daniel won't tell her.
"I was at the end of the line."
He huffed a breath. It was hard to continue.
"I know about... Charlie," she prompted, sparing him that part. About his son. "And the mission to Abydos." The slight crack in her voice told him she knew the real mission. The bomb, and Jack not coming back.
He nodded. "Yeah."
After a pause to gather his thoughts, Jack finally said, "Daniel asked me why. On Abydos.
"When I told him... he didn't argue. He didn't tell me I shouldn't, or that it was wrong or any of that shit. Nothing about how life'll get better, blah, blah, blah." Jack wrinkled his nose. "He just accepted I was... that I wanted out. He never questioned that right to decide. Not once." Jack studied the glass in his hands. "He just insisted I didn't have the right to take everyone else with me.
"And he was right." Jack pulled a few bills out of his wallet and tossed them on the table. They stuck to a damp ring left by the glass. He stood and slung his jacket over his shoulders, saying as he adjusted his sleeves, "I'm a soldier. My life's been saved a lotta times." He met her eyes. "But there aren't many people you can trust to let you die."
Jack turned and waved a little as he left, giving her an ironic smile. "See ya around, Carter."