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Title: Fools Can Dream
Author name: Icarus
Author email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sub Category: Drama
Summary: Jack thought it would be cool to have the wedding in space. (Yes, yes, a marriage fic, but I promise it's not cloying.)
DISCLAIMER: The characters and universe contained in this story are Copyright MGM, Showtime, Gekko, Double Secret. No infringement on their copyright is implied.
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 generous.
Author notes: Unbeta'd, yet again. I shall be flogged with a dozen wet noodles shortly. Written in celebration of the first marriage of two servicemen in Canada.
Fools Can Dream
A blue haze encircled the surface of the Earth below, swirled with bright white above the familiar continents. There was Africa. Jack scanned, looking for Egypt.
He had been in orbit often enough now that it was as normal as watching the square patches sweep by from an airline window, but it didn't make it any less of a sight. He tapped on the window experimentally and got an annoyed glance from one of the young SGC techs who was studying read-outs, on the alert for, oh, he didn't know, Goa'uld motherships or whatever Hammond had them doing. Busywork probably, just an excuse to be up in the air today.
One thing about being in orbit: you could guarantee the weather would be perfect.
Jack looked around at the decorations, ribbons, blue banners, flags and flowers stuck to the dull grey walls of the Prometheus. Tacky, but Jack liked it.
He tugged at the collar of his dress uniform. The extra brass on it still felt uncomfortable; he'd been a colonel far longer than he'd been a major and it definitely took some getting used to. Daniel was wearing navy blue as well, matching Jack - very symbolic of him, Jack thought. He stood with a cluster of people chatting, welcoming, and smiling his tight 'oh-shit-please-let's-get-this-over-with' smile. He caught Jack's eye and looked away quickly.
Yep. Terrified. Which was S.O.P.
Daniel had never really had a wedding before, and Jack had promised him they would be completely miserable. And boy, were they ever. Sam had taken charge of the arrangements with her usual efficiency and forced them to make decisions on things neither of them gave a damn about, yet couldn't agree on either.
Jack cringed, and hoped she was still speaking to them.
A reflection of a familiar uniform appeared in the window in front of him. Jack didn't turn around, but nodded to General Hammond's reflection.
"You've got to know this is pushing the envelop a bit, Jack."
A bit. Jack smirked at the understatement. He took a breath and said, "I've given the Air Force a lot. It's time they gave me something back."
"And by that you mean Doctor Jackson."
"Yes sir," Jack said matter-of-factly.
He wished George would go away, because up until now he'd managed to forget the whole… wedding thing. He'd kept the idea at arm's length as an abstract that might happen at some point in the future, but maybe never.
George never did develop ESP. He shook his head. "I never thought it would happen in my lifetime."
Jack snorted. "Hell, I never thought it would happen at all."
"You sure about this?" Hammond hefted a thick black book and Jack's mouth went dry.
He took a deep breath and said, "No…" in a shaky voice, with a look that was probably more of a grimace.
The general smiled, patted his shoulder reassuringly, then moved to the center of the bridge, his captain's chair and the whole earth behind him.
The small group clustered on the bridge of the Prometheus quieted. They'd invited just the crew and a few close friends. Teal'c stood slightly behind and to the left of Jack, a solid, real presence. Daniel filtered his way through the crowd, still not looking at Jack, his face a little pink. He bit his lower lip and folded his hands in front of his lap like a choirboy that had been very, very bad, and stood beside Jack. Jack wanted to tell him to quit being nervous, but since he couldn't really breathe at the moment he thought the better of it, rocking back on his heels before standing at strict attention.
It couldn't be any worse than being yelled at. Or at least, not much.
Hammond cleared his throat. "Well, we have a few precedents today.
"First is one of the few marriages of its kind in the U.S. Armed forces, as well as the first marriage between two members of the SGC: two men I've known, and have been proud to know, since the inception of this program." Jack tried hard to stand still. "In addition, this is the first time any marriage has been consecrated on the bridge of a U.S. Air Force spacecraft."
"Two points for originality," Jack quipped, then mentally berated himself. He could almost feel Carter giving him the death glare.
Daniel murmured under his breath, "At least we didn't write our own vows..."
"Yes. Always cringe-worthy," Jack agreed, also very quietly, cutting his eyes at Daniel, who was trying not to laugh. Yep, no doubt Carter was mentally sinking the knife into both of them. She had worked so hard at making this nice.
Hammond ignored them. "I can't say how honored I am to have the privilege that has been bestowed upon ship's captains throughout history, and to also be the first person to continue that tradition now that we have set forth into space.
"I've always been a plain-spoken man. I like to say, politely, just exactly what's on my mind. And I have to say I am astounded that you two managed to keep such a secret directly under my nose."
"You had no idea, sir?" Jack asked, perplexed.
"Sorry," Daniel said.
"No apologies necessary, son." Hammond continued, "That said, I cannot think of two individuals who deserve each other more." There was a brief uncomfortable silence. Jack and Daniel glanced at each other. Someone coughed. "And I mean that in best sense of the word."
"Ah. Good." Jack flexed his shoulders nervously. He almost thought he heard a shssh from behind him.
"I can't say 'in sickness and in health'… you have already been together in sickness and in health - and more than a few deaths I might add." Someone chuckled, while Jack rolled his eyes at the SGC cliché. The general peered at them over his bible. "'To honor and cherish' is also redundant, as it is amply clear that you already do. I shall leave out 'obey' as this is Doctor Jackson after all…."
There was soft laughter from their friends. Daniel gave a broad, beaming grin.
"You have stuck by each other for better or for worse, through a kind of worse that most people could never imagine. And I don't think any marriage could ask for more."
Embarrassed, Jack tucked his chin in and prayed for it to be over, please, please, just get to the ring. He focused on the sound of one of the techs suddenly clicking away on his keyboard, just over Hammond's shoulder. Jack lifted his chin and saw the kid stare fixedly at his instruments then cast a glance out the window.
"Today I feel less like I am officiating at the beginning of a marriage, and more like I'm witnessing one that already exists."
Guilty, Jack returned his attention to George.
"Now many of you are aware that I was against this new military policy. Initially." This caught Jack's attention. He knew Hammond's views, but couldn't imagine anyone mentioning them now. "I felt that some changes ought not to be attempted overnight, new political policies or no. The military wasn't ready for such a drastic about-face.
"But I have to say now that seeing the two of you, together, has changed my mind. There are some things that are better for, and belong, in the clear light of day.
"I won't say that you don't have a rocky road ahead of you. You most certainly do. But I am confident that this marriage - more than many others I have seen - can and will weather the storm."
Jack saw Daniel stand a little straighter, and his own throat felt tight.
"Do you have the rings?"
Jack made a quick nervous motion, casting about blindly, but Teal'c was already there, both rings in hand. Daniel shuffled forward to face Jack. Oh God, he had to look at Daniel now. Fuck, fuck, fuck, he wanted this over. But Daniel's eyes were saucer-sized, which made Jack feel a lot better. He looked so much worse.
"Do you, Jonathan 'Jack' O'Neill, take this man…" There was only the slightest pause there, well done, George, "…to be your lawfully wedded husband, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, until death do you part?"
"I do." It came out as a croak, but would have to do. Jack shut his eyes briefly. Why did the rehearsals always go better?
"And do you, Daniel Jackson, take this man -"
"Sir-!" The young tech spoke up. "I'm sorry to interrupt, sir, but we have two Goa'uld motherships on our long-range sensors."
"Oh crap!" Jack swore, spinning towards the windows.
"I do-!" Daniel quickly raised his hand like a student in class.
"Then I now pronounce you man and… husband." That was less smooth, but the general snapped his bible shut, all military now. "Let's go people! It looks like it's a good thing we're out here after all."
But the crew of the Prometheus had already sprung into action. Decorations were quickly swiped off panels as airmen adjusted chairs and headsets, a business-like excited chatter between them, repeating system checks and counter-checks.
Hammond paused to squeeze Jack's shoulder. "I'm sorry, Jack."
"It's not you. It's the damned Goa'uld."
Several airmen bushed past Daniel who was only inches away now. Jack vaguely recalled that some planter or something had collapsed when he married Sara. These things never went right.
"I suppose I should, um," Daniel's thumb pointed casually to one of the stations, "monitor transmissions, maybe figure out what they're saying to each other…"
"Oh no, you don't."
A look of confusion crossed Daniel's face as Jack dragged him forward by the belt, then sealed his hands on either side of Daniel's face, kissing him firmly, long and slow, lips sliding. They parted with a sharp breath; then Jack went deeper, lost in Daniel's surprised responsiveness. He was just catching on that they could do this. In the background, Jack could hear more chatter, and sense the startled, quick glances and raised eyebrows - the change of footsteps as crew members changed course around them.
Jack finally ran out of air and took a shuddering breath. "I wanted our first public kiss to be a doozy. Been planning that."
Daniel wiped his mouth. "Yeah."
Then Jack turned towards the rest of the crew… who were carefully not looking at him, though he'd expected that. He stood behind Hammond's chair, leaning on it, affecting calm when he was anything but.
"Let's get those bastards." He pointed at the screen. "I intend to hold a serious grudge against whoever's out there."
Jack blinked over at Daniel in surprise. Weddings were the last thing on his mind right now.
"Put this on." Daniel fumbled the wedding ring into his hand.
And sliding that smooth, slightly sweaty surface on his ring finger felt… right. Like he'd put this on every day for his entire life, even though he hadn't worn one since Sara. Later he'd explain to Daniel he didn't wear it in the field. Nothing personal, he just didn't take anything he valued on missions. But for now… yeah.
They stared at each other, wide-eyed and slightly shell-shocked.
"Son of a bitch, we really did it." It sounded stupid the moment it came out of his mouth, but Daniel was already agreeing.
Prometheus received a steady crackle of orders from Stargate Command, still real-time this close to the planet. The blue curve of Earth was sliding away to their left as they came about to face the stars.
"Yeah." Daniel nodded, also watching the screen. His voice was wry. "We're completely out of our minds."