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It's a Lie That Tells the Truth

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The day had been one grand disaster. Daniel stared at the monitor in front of him watching Jack and Teal’c crawling through a Russian submarine infested with replicators. He hated being stuck in the temporary command center with Davis and Siler when he wanted to be with his team. After losing two men in a first unsuccessful attempt to destroy the nasty metal bugs, Jack and Teal’c had gone in alone. They had killed ‘Mom,’ the replicator that had incorporated the bug from Thor’s ship, and the reason why they hadn’t been able to simply blow it up. But from then on things had gone shockingly wrong. The replicators had blocked off all the exits and there was no way for Jack and Teal’c to get clear of the sub.

And in this moment Jack ordered, “Prepare to go ahead and blow this thing.” He looked tired and overwhelmed when he said it, but although the replicators were advancing from everywhere there was no panic in voice.

‘No!’ Daniel wanted to shout. Jack couldn’t accept defeat that easily. It … it couldn’t end like this. There were still so many unresolved things between them.

A bit over a week ago they had parted in anger, and because of his appendicitis, the mission to Thor’s ship, and the week Jack, Sam and Teal’c had been stranded on P4X234, there hadn’t been time to settle their differences. While he had been waiting for news from the team, Daniel had had enough time to regret his harsh words. It seemed Jack had also used last week to think a few things through because he had greeted him with a broad smile and a joke after coming back through the gate. But the big reconciliation scene – hopefully with lots of hot make-up sex, Daniel thought ruefully – had still to take place.

Therefore it was absolutely impossible that this should be the end. Daniel answered in a much more light-hearted tone than he felt, “That's not exactly a positive attitude, Jack.” He wasn’t able to see Jack’s reaction to his words because Teal’c’s camera was pointed at another part of the ship.

But then Jack removed his helmet and turned it so Daniel was able to see his face, and said very adamantly, “Listen to me. We are not getting out of here. Mission accomplished. Blow it!”

“Jack!“

Why did Jack force him of all people to give this order? For a second Daniel was furious with Jack. Wasn’t the colonel’s first rule that nobody got left behind? Why make an exception for him? But then Daniel remembered that he had been able to persuade Jack to leave him alone on Klorel’s ship for the sake of the mission. Daniel sighed. How often had he discussed with Jack if Mr. Spock was right that the interests of the many outweigh the interests of the few? They had never come to a satisfying conclusion and he remembered Jack’s frustration vividly.

Daniel took a long look at Jack and his irrational anger evaporated quickly, leaving behind a wave of nauseous despair. He … he couldn’t say the words! They had discussed the possibility of a situation where it would be more merciful to kill someone than to prolong his agony. But not like this! Not in giving an order to fire a torpedo. They had always thought that it would be a very personal act, having eye contact, touching, holding hands. Some sort of comfort. Like on Klorel’s ship. But this?

Daniel gulped visibly, nibbled on his bottom lip and tried to think of a solution. Any solution. A last straw. A quick glance at Major Davis showed him that the Major would be no help because he was also waiting for his orders. All the responsibility lay with him.

“Daniel, please!” Jack was imploring him.

There was crackling in the static, the chirping and rattling of the replicators was deadly loud on the otherwise silent submarine, a constant reminder what death looked like. The seconds seemed to freeze and to accelerate at the same time. Not enough time to find a solution but too much time to torment himself with indecision.

The colonel’s voice tore him back to the present. “Before I get eaten alive by these … damn bugs!”

Jack looked directly at him, begging Daniel to save him from this fate. When Jack added, “Davis, give the order!” Daniel knew that Jack was offering him a way out. But at the same second he knew that it had to be his decision. Jack was his team, his friend – and what nobody knew, his … lover. They had never given a name to their relationship and therefore he was at a loss now to get his semantics right. Not so great, for a linguist. Jack would have loved the irony.

Daniel still hesitated. He felt that Jack’s life was slipping through his fingers, and he was unable to stop the inexorable catastrophe. But Jack was counting on him, trusting him, and suddenly he realized that this wasn’t a situation where the “Spock-dilemma’ – save mankind or save the love of your live – was applicable. Even if he wouldn’t admit it, Jack and Teal’c were as good as dead. The only thing left for him to do was to choose the way they would die; hopefully quick in the explosion of the torpedoes rather than slowly eaten alive by the bugs.
He made up his mind and blurted out, “Okay, okay.” That was all he was able to say, he couldn’t repeat the final order word by word.

Major Davis did it for him, and a few moments later Siler announced, “Dallas is firing torpedoes! Eight seconds to impact," then he counted down.

Daniel didn’t really hear him because he was watching Jack who had fallen to the floor and was overrun by the metal bugs. These were Jack’s last seconds, and as last seconds they sucked. There was no time to say goodbye, no time for apologies, no time to tell Jack how much he cared for him.

Just when he had made up his mind and thought “screw your rules,” Jack reached for the helmet to switch off the camera so that nobody had to watch him and Teal’c die. Daniel tried to burn this last picture of Jack into his mind when a very characteristic flash of bright light enveloped the two men and they disappeared before the screen went black.

It took Daniel’s brain only a fraction of a second to realize what that meant. “They're okay…“ He didn’t howl in triumph, he only whispered the words, superstitiously afraid to spook their good luck.

“What?” Davis looked up from cradling his head in his hands not to witness the death of O’Neill and Teal’c.

Waving madly at the screen, Daniel was once again at a loss for words. Happiness and gratitude bubbled to the surface trying to escape, and at the same time he was struggling to explain what had happened. This type of multitasking proved to be too difficult right now, and so he was stammering, grinning like a loon, and pointing upwards, “The …The … They’re…they're okay!” Inwardly he was chanting, ‘yes, yes, yes’, ‘thank you’ and ‘Jack’s alive’ in a never-ending loop.

Daniel felt Paul putting a hand on his shoulder and squeezing, and when he looked at him, the Major mirrored the same goofy grin that he surely also wore.
In this moment all guards were down and when Paul asked him hesitantly, “You love them, don’t you?”
Daniel was so caught up in his happiness, that he whispered, “Yes, I love him.” Without noticing his faux-pas, he continued, “They’re like family to me.” And from the depths of his heart he added, “I’m so happy they made it.”

The next second, when everybody finally understood what had happened, chaos broke loose. Everyone was shouting, congratulating and clapping each other on the shoulder. And when the confirmation from the SGC reached them that Sam, Jack and Teal’c were indeed back at the Mountain, alive and kicking, it continued for a few minutes more. Then, in a whirlwind of activities, the temporary command center was packed together and all the personnel flew back in a military plane to Peterson Airbase at Colorado Springs.

General Hammond was waiting for them at the base, congratulating them and telling them the debriefing was postponed until the next day to give the bureaucrats time to come up with the correct wording for this “incident”.

With a pleased smile he told Daniel, “Go home and try to sleep a bit. I’ll see you tomorrow.” He draped a fatherly arm around his shoulder and added, “You did well, son. Jack will be proud of you. You and Major Davis made the right decision at a difficult moment and I know how much it cost you.”

Daniel returned the smile while those horrible minutes played through his memory again. They were burned into his brain in all their crystal clear harshness. Every. Single. Word.
And with an inward groan he suddenly became aware what exactly he had said, that he had accidentally outed them to Major Davis! Daniel closed his eyes. No, no, no! That wasn’t possible! And it had taken him more than three hours to realize it! Crap! Jack was right; there were days you’d be better off staying in bed! He would have liked to bang his head against a hard surface or disappear to an unknown place where nobody would find him. Sticking his head in the sand suddenly sounded very alluring.

But unfortunately that was out of question. Damage control was called for. He frantically searched for the Major, but he was already gone. After asking around, he was able to find an airman who told him that Major Davis had taken a taxi to the Esplanade Hotel. Daniel called for the next cab.

----------------------------------------

After Thor had dropped them off at the SGC, Jack decided to go home. After a shower and a nap he’d be almost as good as new. And he needed that. He still felt the pesky critters crawling over him. Their metal legs had felt cold on his skin, his neck, his face and. For one moment he had thought that this was it. But in the last second Thor had beamed them on board – sans bugs – it had been such a relief after such a close call.

Jack tossed and turned in his bed and tried to wrestle the pillow into a comfortable shape, but the dearly needed sleep wouldn’t come. But it wasn’t the replicators that kept him awake anymore, it was Daniel. He had very nearly lost him. And they hadn’t had time to make up yet. Daniel’s stammering when he had invited him to the cabin had made clear that Daniel hadn’t understood the peace offer. And this invitation being the central point of Jack’s reconciliation-strategy … There was still a lot of convincing to do.

They had fought over telling Sam and Teal’c about their relationship. Daniel – the great expert on understanding mankind – had voted for the truth. Sure. Because of course everybody else shared Dr. Jackson’s generous views. Jack sighed deeply. In this regard the archaeologist hadn’t learned much in the last years. He still overestimated people, while Jack had no problem admitting that he underestimated them. At least this way he wasn’t disappointed so often.

It wasn’t the first time they had argued about this. But during their last discussion a lot of un-nice words had been said and Daniel had been uncharacteristically pig-headed, being much more short-tempered and less diplomatic than usual. Only in hindsight had Jack realized that Daniel had been already afflicted by his appendicitis. But by then the hurtful words had already been said and couldn’t be taken back. You didn’t get away with calling your friend and lover ‘naive’ and telling him he had no common sense at all, especially when he had proven throughout the last three years that he could be relied on. Well, he had only called him that after Daniel had called him a ‘military-shithead’ and ‘doom-monger’. But then Daniel had his impending appendicitis as an excuse. Jack didn’t have that excuse, in fact, he had *no* excuse, and that made him feel like a complete ass.

Jack switched on the light and sat up grumpily. Crap, until he hadn’t talked to Daniel he wouldn’t be able to sleep. He called the SGC to find out if the plane had already landed. When he learned that they had reached Peterson Airbase a few minutes ago he tried to contact Daniel on his phone, but was only connected to the mailbox.

He was a bit puzzled; usually the first thing Daniel did when he was ‘home’, was to call him and tell him about the mission. He sighed. This was doubtlessly the lingering consequences of their last argument. It was really important that they got over it. So Jack overcame his hatred for the stupid machine and talked to Daniel’s mailbox. “Daniel, call me as soon as you listen to this. We have to talk.” Then he wondered if that sounded too much like a command and added a “Please” as an afterthought. He went to the kitchen and started brewing a pot of coffee.

------------------------------------------

Twenty minutes later Daniel arrived at the hotel and felt like puking. And that had nothing to do with the cab driver who obviously thought he was Michael Schumacher, but everything to do with the fact that this felt like he was waiting for a verdict. He should be used to it by now because there were always aliens who wanted to judge them for acts they had done – or more often – not done. But this was different. This was personal, it could destroy Jack’s future, and it was his fault. His fault alone, he couldn’t blame anybody else.

The lady at the reception called up to Major Davis and within minutes Daniel was standing in front of room 42. How appropriate, Daniel thought bitterly. Behind this door were waiting the answers to his questions. And the most important question of all: had he ruined Jack’s career?

On the way to the hotel he had called himself a dumbass, castigating himself with ‘What-if? - scenarios. Only in a few more optimistic moments, had he tried to persuade himself that Paul hadn’t registered his answer at all, or attributed it to a simple mispronunciation.

But mostly he was convinced that nobody could have missed his lapse. What if Paul was a stickler to rules and had already informed General Hammond? Well, the last dealings with him made this unlikely, but you never knew when things like DADT were involved. Suddenly nice people could have the most backward and intolerant opinions of why the US military would be doomed if there were openly gay people serving.

Somehow he had to find out how much Paul had heard and then try to shoulder the blame, taking Jack out of the line of fire. As plans went this one wasn’t glorious, but it had to work.
Just when Daniel was again rubbing his sweaty palms on his trousers, and feeling as if there was lead in his stomach, Major Davis opened the door.

“Hi, Daniel.” The Major smiled, but raised his eyebrows inquiringly.

“Hi, Paul.”

“Come in. What can I do for you?” he asked politely.

Daniel pulled himself together and followed Paul. The Major offered him the only chair in the small room and fetched two bottles of water from the mini-bar, giving one to Daniel before sitting down on the bed.

“I hope no new problems with the replicators have arisen?” The concern in his voice was obvious.

“No.” Daniel shook his head. “This time the problem is ... home-made.” Daniel sighed, picking absentmindedly at the label on this water bottle.

Major Davis waited.

There was no sense in delaying the inevitable. Daniel straightened in his seat and asked, “How much do you remember from the conversation we had directly after the rescue of Teal’c and the Colonel?”

The Major took a sip from his bottle then he answered very deliberately, “I remember as much as you want me to remember.”

Daniel blinked, surprised. “Oh.” His mind raced. Was this Paul’s way of saying that he wouldn’t talk with anybody about this, or was this some sort of invitation to bargain for a price to keep silent? A deep frown appeared on his forehead. Either way the ball was in his court and Paul was surely waiting for more than an astonished ‘oh’.

“I won’t be blackmailed,” Daniel stated firmly.

“Huh?“ Now it was Paul’s turn to look at Daniel in complete confusion. “Why should I …?” He waved his hand dismissively after he had followed Daniel’s train of thought. “Oh, I see. No, no, you’ve got it all wrong! I tried – unsuccessfully it seems – to tell you it is fine with me to forget we ever had this conversation or to talk about it with you. Whatever you prefer.” He nodded vehemently to confirm the honesty and truthfulness of his words.

“I’m sorry.” If Paul had never thought about blackmail this wasn’t a very nice allegation. “It … was the first thing that popped into my head. Please accept my apology.” Daniel took a deep breath. “When I realized what I’d said … what I revealed, well … I’ve been pretty frantic with worry ever since.”

Paul waved the apology away. “Never mind.”

“Thank you.” Daniel was relieved and felt the knot in his stomach gradually dissolving. “Let’s attribute my answer to a high level of stress and a moment of … of … utter relief, and never ever talk about it again.”

“Done and done.” The Major nodded.

“And you won’t tell anybody?“ Daniel needed the reassurance.

“You would have been the only one I ever talked about this,” Paul said with a placating smile.

“Thank you.” Daniel hoped that the Major never would get in a situation where he had to reconsider his promise. “I’ll take your word for it.” There was nothing else he could do. This was the second best outcome, after his childish wish, that Paul hadn’t listened to his babbling, hadn’t been fulfilled.

“Don’t torment yourself,” Paul chided.

“It’s easier said than done,” Daniel shrugged his shoulders in a resigned way.

“And this is still the easy part.” Paul gave him a lopsided grin. “Think about what you’re going to tell him.”

If this was a try to cheer him up, it failed miserably. Daniel had to admit to himself that he hadn’t thought beyond this conversation with Paul. All his thoughts had circulated about the question how much the Major knew and if he had already talked to someone. Therefore he had totally pushed to the background the fact that there was still another talk waiting for him after this one. And Jack, who wasn’t sitting in front of Paul now, who couldn’t see his eyes, couldn’t read his body language, would be very difficult to persuade that his lapse didn’t have dire consequences.

In the future Jack would have to work with Major Davis, and he wouldn’t be very thrilled to learn that Paul now knew about the direction his love life had taken. Of course, no details. Daniel hadn’t even confirmed that Jack also loved him. But already the mere fact that Daniel had admitted to loving him would make Jack nervous. This knowledge in the wrong hands could cause a lot of harm.

Obviously, he looked so crestfallen that Paul gently laid his hand on Daniel’s knee and repeated insistently, “I swear, I won’t talk to anybody.”

“I believe you, but …” It wasn’t necessary that Daniel finished the sentence, Paul understood him only too well. For a moment nobody talked then Daniel forced a little smile on his face and said, “I’ve made my bed, now I must lie in it.” He got up and put the bottle back on the desk. He had torn the label to shreds but hadn’t drunk from it.

Paul also got up. When Daniel already had the door knob in his hand he said hesitantly, “As a last resort, when nothing else works, you can tell … him that I won’t talk because for a year and a half there’s … Brendan in my life, and nobody knows about him.”

Daniel’s eyes got big and round behind his glasses. Paul served his career up on a silver platter to him so Jack wouldn’t bite his head off! If Jack could be convinced by anything then it would be the power that came from that knowledge. Quid pro quo. There was no better guarantee for silence.

“Wow!“ Daniel pulled himself together. “I mean … uh ...” Searching for words he scratched his head. “Uhm … it seems ‘wow’ is insufficient to describe my feelings.” He finished the sentence with a grin.

“Perhaps not,” Paul confirmed with a nervous little laugh.

“Thank you, Paul.” Daniel offered his hand.

Paul took it, shaking it vigorously. “Good luck, Daniel.”

“You, too, Paul. See you.” Daniel got up and walked to the door that his host had opened for him.

“Bye.”

After Daniel had left the hotel he looked up to Paul’s window and waved his hand, Paul waved back. Daniel called a taxi to head home. He wouldn’t rush things. It was always a good idea to have a night’s sleep when confronted with a difficult situation. And Jack would be in a better mood if he didn’t interrupt his slumber.

While waiting for the cab he found Jack’s message. “Call me as soon as you listen to this. We have to talk. … Please.” Daniel exhaled deeply. Okay, he’d do that once he got home.

----------------------------------------------------

When Daniel still hadn’t returned the call after half an hour and Jack was once again connected to the mailbox, he called Peterson, to find out if there had been some sort of delay. Eventually he learned that Dr. Jackson had taken a taxi and followed Major Davis to the hotel because they still had to clear up some important details on the mission.
Jack thanked the airman and hung up. What? They had had all the time during the flight to talk about these hyper important questions. Why did Daniel follow Davis to his hotel? Jack felt a hot spike of jealousy. No!

He had to talk to Daniel immediately. Grabbing his car keys, Jack rushed to his car and was quickly on his way to the hotel. When he had to wait at a red light, his fingers drumming a nervous tattoo on the steering wheel, he had time to contemplate a good opening line for the slimy Major. And he came up with zip, nada, not a damn thing.

He was a fool. He couldn’t storm into Major Davis’ hotel room and cause a scene. What better way to arouse suspicions? Jack took a deep, steadying breath. Daniel wouldn’t betray him like this. But already the fear of losing Daniel hurt so much that it made him act like an idiot. He shook his head to clear the lingering effects of his jealous panic attack.

The car behind him honked like crazy. Jack flipped the driver the bird and headed back home. Once there, he flopped down on the sofa and left another message. “When you’re done with Major Davis, call me, okay?” If that didn’t bring Daniel to his house …

Fifteen minutes later, Jack heard a knock at the door. He opened it and found Daniel – as predicted – at his front door.

“Hey, you appeared in person. That’s way better than the phone.”

As soon as the door closed behind Daniel, Jack pulled him into his arms. He buried his nose in the crook of Daniel’s neck and inhaled deeply. “So good to have you back,” he mumbled and kissed the skin behind Daniel’s ear and on his chin before he claimed Daniel’s mouth impatiently. For a second Daniel was hesitant but then he melted in his arms and answered the kiss with abandon, his hands roaming over Jack’s back.

Nearly at the same time they both stopped the kiss and Jack said, “We have to talk”, while Daniel said, “I have to talk to you.”

When Daniel tried to go to the sofa, Jack steered him determinedly to the bedroom. “You’re exhausted and you’re cold, so we better relocate this whole apologizing thing to bed. Any objections?”

Daniel said ‘no’ while thinking ‘yes.’ He wasn’t really convinced that Jack would still want him in his bed after he had heard about the outing. He could easily understand if Jack was so disappointed and hurt that he wanted some sort of distance between them. If that happened Daniel hoped that it would be only temporary but then again perhaps Jack would be so pissed that it would take a long time before he trusted him once more.

In mutual agreement they kept on their boxer shorts and climbed into bed together. Jack propped a pillow behind his head and turned to Daniel. Better to get it over with as long as he still felt like apologizing and not pouncing on his lover who looked so delectable with his mussed up hair and the constant nibbling on his bottom lip.

“I’m sorry for what I said during our last … encounter,” he plunged forward. “If you want to tell Sam and Teal’c about our relationship because you’re worried it will otherwise tear the team apart – do it. I’m still convinced that it would be easier for Carter to know nothing. No conflict of loyalty if everything goes down the drain. But I can understand that the constant half-truths are getting on your nerves. So, if you want to update her, go ahead. I’ll survive it somehow.” He gave Daniel an apologetic grin.

When Daniel wanted to reply, Jack shushed him and continued. “Let me finish, as long as I’m in the swing of things. I’m also sorry for leaving you with the order to fire the torpedo. I shouldn’t have done that. It was a military decision and therefore Major Davis’ responsibility.”
Which brought him back much too early to the accursed major. “Okay, so your turn. Spill. What was so super important between you and the Major that it couldn’t wait until tomorrow?”

Daniel couldn’t miss the irritated tone of the question and answered with a pitiful sigh, “You’re not going to like it …” He was totally unaware that with these words he confirmed Jack’s worst fears.

Jack grabbed Daniel’s arm and squeezed it tightly, bitterness rang in his voice. “So tell me, you and Davis, what has this slimly little bastard got that I don’t? I can’t imagine you’ve got a crush on that glorified errand boy from Washington. Agreed, sometimes I’m a bit too sarcastic but …”

“Jack!”

“But …”

“Jack, stop. Listen to me, before you continue to insult the Major.” Daniel was kneeling in front of Jack now and put his hand on Jack’s mouth so he couldn’t say more. “It isn’t what you think it is. I would never start anything with someone, then climb into bed with you and tell you about it. You can’t really believe that, can you?”

Jack’s eyes still were still throwing out sparks, but he shook his head.

Daniel removed his hand from Jack’s lips and put on his glasses because he needed to see Jack’s expression when he said his next words. “Fine. Now for the hard part. I visited Major Davis because I had … I had … accidentally outed us to him and …“

“Accidentally?” Jack couldn’t have looked more surprised if Daniel had told him that Hammond was hiding under the bed. “How is that possible? I can’t imagine a conversation with a fellow officer where I suddenly say, ‘Oh, by the way, did I already mention it? I’m fucking my archaeologist.’ Can you – please – explain to me how to do that ‘accidentally?’”

“Yes, I can explain. If your … lover is saved in the last moment from certain death, it is possible that your brain is totally offline and fixated on only one thing. In my case that was you. And when Davis asked me, ‘Do you love them?’ I heard what I wanted to hear and said ‘Yes, I love him.’ And … please, let me continue,” Daniel begged when Jack was about to interrupt him. “I only remembered the exact words after we had landed and I re-played the conversation in my head.”

“Three hours later?”

“I’m not proud about this – but yes, it took me three hours. I’m really, really sorry, Jack. And if I could make it un-said with the help of Asgard technology, I would do it. I …”

“Crap, Daniel. I wouldn’t tell Teal’c, my big warrior friend, and now this little … folder-pusher from the Pentagon knows it.” Jack rubbed both his hands over his face.

“He won’t tell anybody. And even if you don’t hold my knowledge of human nature in high esteem right now, and even if you think I’m too credulous, I believe him.”

“Ha!” Jack laughed bitterly. “Even if he doesn’t blackmail me openly, he’ll have requests I can’t deny.”

“No, he won’t.” Daniel desperately wanted to touch Jack but decided against it. He wrapped his arms protectively around his own body, and begging for understanding he repeated, “He won’t betray us. I can’t change the fact that you’ll feel awkward when you’ll see him next time, but we are safe.”

Jack tried to reign in his anger and his disappointment when he declared tersely, “Power corrupts, Daniel. And when he has to, he’ll use this knowledge against me, against us.” He pushed back the duvet and was getting up when Daniel held him back, grabbing his elbow.

“I don’t think so. In return he told me one of his secrets.” Somehow he had to convince Jack that there were still honest people and that Paul was one of them.

Jack sneered. “Dannyboy, we aren’t in the kindergarten anymore. You can’t be so … so …” Jack searched for a word that didn’t bring back their last argument.

Daniel helped him.. “To be so naïve? That’s what you wanted to say, isn’t it?”

Jack’s lips were only a thin line when he nodded, “Yes, that’s the word I was looking for.”

“Fine. Perhaps, I deserve it,” Daniel acknowledged to Jack’s surprise. “Even if I still think that ‘naïve’ is a bit too negative. It would be better …”

“No lecture on the history of ‘naïve’. I’m really fed up with you at the moment.” Man, even Daniel had to understand that this was knowledge nobody would keep to himself. If he ever found out that Maybourne or Kinsey was involved with alcohol or drugs or other illegal machinations, he’d try to get them dismissed.

“Okay, I can understand that. I’m rather fed up with myself, too.”

“Nice that we found at least one point to agree upon. And now I’m going to get myself a drink. Do you want one?”

“No, thank you.” They should both keep a clear head. For a second he struggled with himself, but when Jack got up, he said quickly, “Paul allowed me – as a last resort – to tell you that he won’t talk because he’s in a relationship with a man named Brendan.”

“What?!” Jack plunged back on the mattress with an audible thud.

“I think that’s a plausible reason for trust, don’t you?” Daniel begged Jack to understand. He couldn’t have betrayed Paul’s confidence for nothing.

“Brendan who?”

“I don’t know and I didn’t ask.”

“Damn, Daniel. You are the only person I know, who is able to let two officers stumble over DADT in only three hours.” Jack crawled under the blankets again and leaned against the headboard. “Tell me how do you make someone you only have a nodding acquaintance with share such secrets with you?” Jack was really impressed.

“I don’t know. I think I looked so dejected that he wanted to help me.” In hindsight he had to agree with Jack. That had been an immensely generous gesture.

Jack suspected Paul had a very soft spot in his heart for Daniel – Brendan or not. But he wouldn’t dwell on it because Daniel would certainly deny it. “Fine. I believe you, and also willy-nilly Major Davis, that nobody will ever learn about this. And I will have to live with the knowledge that not only my team but also another person knows about us.” He gave Daniel a very lopsided grin.

“Uhm … Paul will be the only one. I don’t feel like going through this again. The uncertainty whether I had destroyed your career or not has been horrible. I was in a cold sweat and felt nauseous when I stood waiting in front of Paul’s door. I don’t want to relive those minutes again. What if Sam or Teal’c react differently than I assume? What if they are okay with us but don’t want to be on the team anymore because they can’t live with breaking the rules every day? No, there are too many loose ends that can’t be controled, so at this point I don’t want to tell them.”

“Oh. Well, then …” Jack wasn’t really opposed to this decision, in fact, he liked it.

“Then there is still the ‘military shithead’ and ‘doom-monger’ … I want to apologize for those.” Daniel laid hesitantly a hand on Jack’s arm.

“No, no. I didn’t take back ‘naïve’ so you’re allowed to stick to one of those.”

“Idiot.” There was a tentative smile on Daniel’s lips.

“Hey, this isn’t a permit for new insults!” Jack complained laughingly and pulled Daniel against him.

Daniel went willingly. He was utterly relieved that Jack had taken this whole thing with Paul relatively calmly. And after he had nearly lost Jack on the submarine, the reason for their argument seemed rather inane. Fear of death could shift a perspective dramatically.

Jack rolled him on his back and bent over him. Daniel felt small kisses first on his neck, then trailing down his collarbone until Jack bit playfully into his left nipple. Daniel moaned and that was invitation enough for Jack to bite a bit harder. A warm wave of desire flooded Daniel’s whole body. He pushed the thought that he came very close to losing this, far away. He whispered, “Harder,” and Jack complied. Perhaps he understood the motivation behind the order, perhaps he wanted to simply follow Daniel’s wishes.

A few moments later Jack disappeared under the blankets while his lips were gliding down over his lover’s body. Daniel wanted to complain when Jack stopped, but then he noticed that Jack got rid of the blankets, pushing them impatiently to the floor.

“I want to be able to see you,” Jack whispered and added grinningly, “Besides, it got too hot under the blanket.”

Daniel writhed before Jack’s eyes and savoured the hungry glances that where following each of his movements. Then he felt Jack’s hand at the waistband of his boxers.

“Can I see your scar?” Jack asked, both were aware that he has asked exactly the same question only a few days ago. But this time Daniel agreed and pushed up his hips from the mattress so that Jack could pull down his shorts.

“Why did you ask Sam if she wanted to go fishing with you?” Daniel blurted out.

“Urgh. Geeze. Daniel! I think we had a common agreement not to take Carter with us to bed,” Jack complained and caressed tenderly the insides of Daniel’s thighs until he felt goose-bumps rising on Daniel’s skin. “But as you will insist on an answer: It was a red herring. I knew she would say no, so I asked her. After that I told Teal’c about monster mosquitoes and in the same breath asked him too if he wanted to go. He declined. So if you accept my invitation, you are the hero in the eyes of the SGC because you’re the only one that dares to accompany the cranky Colonel to the Minnesota wilderness. A clever plan, isn’t it?” Jack beamed.

Daniel laughed. “Fantastic. So that means the invitation is still open?”

“Whenever you want,” Jack assured him and breathed a kiss on the appendectomy scar. “The scar looks good – and it seems you are cleared for all sorts of activities.”

“Oh, yes. Janet cleared me for work – so then I’m also cleared for sex.” Daniel’s voice got a hoarse undertone. “You can do whatever you like. I … I want ... to feel it intensely. Don’t be too careful; only as much prep as absolutely necessary.” Daniel was breathing more rapidly, now after letting Jack in on his unusual desires. More often than not, he was the more active partner. And extensive reading provided him with a lot of new ideas to try out with and on Jack.

“Okay.” Jack was perfectly fine with Daniel’s wishes for the evening. Generally, he liked to be pampered by Daniel, to submit to him, and to not have to make the ultimate decisions. He had had a few relationships where his partners had expected him to act the resolute military man in bed also, and that had made him miss the much needed distance between work and leisure. When Daniel indulged him with tenderness, he was the private person and not the Colonel, and that was totally relaxing. But today he wanted to erase ten days of uncertainty, death threats and a sharp stab of jealousy. Yep, today he owned Daniel’s ass…and he was going to nail it to the mattress.

He pressed another soft kiss to Daniel’s scar, got quickly rid of his own shorts and turned to Daniel’s dick which lay half-hard directly in front of his lips. Jack set to the task to make it hard and leaking. He loved that. It showed how much Daniel trusted him – everybody else would have wanted to impress him with hard cock, but Daniel was comfortable enough to let him see it in an unaroused state.

He let his tongue glide over the tender skin, up and down, teased the glans and licked through the small slit. He was rewarded with a whimper, and only then did Jack close his lips around Daniel’s dick. With his hand he massaged the base while he sucked more forcefully at the top. Oh my god! How much he had missed this! He didn’t want to think how close it had been this time. He felt Daniel growing steadily under his hands and his lips until he filled his mouth perfectly. Daniel was his and Jack blew him with all the finesse and force he could.

Yes, like that. Daniel struggled not to move his hips. Not to ram his dick into Jack’s mouth until he choked on it, although everything in him cried to do just that. To reaffirm in that very primordial way that they were both alive and Jack was still with him. Instead he spread his legs, offered himself to Jack, eager to fulfil his promise that it was Jack who called the shots this evening. Jack obviously had understood his silent offer, because he laid his hand on the insides of Daniel’s thighs, pressed them a bit farther apart. There was no need for that, there was enough space for Jack between his legs, but Daniel got that Jack wanted to show him he was at his mercy. Daniel answered with a consenting moan.

Jack was pleased by Daniel’s surrender. He put some more weight on his hands, so that Daniel was forced to pull his knees a bit higher until he was totally open to him. Jack had to take a deep breath when Daniel lifted his arms over his head to push against the headboard with his hands. This picture of Daniel was going straight to his head, and the satisfying thought ‘he’s mine,’ ran through his brain provoking a deep and urgent vibration in Jack’s whole body.

When Jack sat up to admire Daniel in his vulnerability, he felt how his own dick was standing straight from his body and his balls hung heavily between his legs. He touched himself but when he noticed that Daniel was observing each of his movements closely through half-lidded eyes, he snagged his hand away. No, he wouldn’t come over his lover’s delectable body – as tempting as it was. He had other plans. “Turn around. Hands and knees,” he said. It came out breathlessly and sounded more like an order than he had intended.

Daniel’s hectic gulps showed him that his friend was fighting an inner battle to obey or not. He had promised, ‘you can do whatever you like,’ hadn’t he? For a few seconds Daniel doubted if this had been a good idea. But then he saw that Jack’s military tone came from his impatience and hadn’t been meant to sound that harsh. Okay, he could live with that, even if following orders had never been his forte.

He turned on his stomach and got onto his hands and knees. Jack knew that he preferred to have eye contact while having sex – but tonight he would do whatever Jack wanted. Daniel spread his legs wider, went down to his elbows and pressed his forehead to the mattress. In for a penny, in for a pound. And he loved to surprise Jack.

“Holy cow!” Seeing Daniel acquiesce to his command, Jack almost lost it. His higher brain functions were only doing a half-assed job of maintaining control and he muttered, “This won’t work,” causing his lover to snicker and shake his ass invitingly. Jack gave him a warning slap and complained, “Stop it!” With his other hand he fumbled for the lube in the drawer of the nightstand.

A few seconds later Daniel felt Jack’s slick fingers caressing him from his balls to his hole and bringing with them a trace of burning craving and lust. Warm ripples of longing shot from his toes to his head and he squeezed his eyes shut. Jack massaged this sensitive spot again and again, and when Daniel was only a second away from imploring Jack to stop teasing him, he felt one finger breach him.

‘Yes, make-up sex should always be like this.’ Daniel didn’t know where these words came from, but he knew that they were right. And Jack had really listened to him because in the next moment there was more than Jack’s finger. With the minimal preparation Daniel felt every inch of Jack’s dick intruding into him, always balancing precariously between lust and ‘too much, too fast’. But Jack knew his body intimately and was able to interpret each of his reactions perfectly. Jack took possession of his body, there was no doubt, and that was exactly what Daniel needed. He exhaled after holding his breath for too long without noticing.

When Jack heard that, he pushed the last inches into Daniel even harder until he bottomed out. His right hand was gliding over Daniel’s back and he caressed the short hair on Daniel’s neck. Daniel answered with another groan and whispered, “Hold me down.”

Jack, who had closed his eyes dreamingly, opened them abruptly. Oh man! Daniel didn’t do things by halves! He couldn’t remember the last time Daniel had placed himself so unconditionally in his hands. Applying a bit more strength, he let Daniel feel that he would hold him in this position and hew saw Daniel nodding faintly. Jack started to move in earnest and hoped that with the sensory overload he was experiencing right now, he would be able to last at least a few minutes.

This felt right, Daniel thought, and let himself fall into the pace Jack set. Later he might wonder what had brought him to this position, but in this moment he experienced a wild mixture of rightness, desire and the wish to please Jack. There were a few feelings of guilt mixed in but also a lot of ease. And the wonderful feeling of not being alone, of having somebody so special in his life, somebody who knew him so well that he was able to give him exactly what he needed. When he felt Jack’s other hand touching his oversensitive dick, only a few strokes were necessary and Daniel sensed his world condensing into two points: Jack’s dick which kept hitting his prostrate with every stroke, and Jack’s hand which so knowingly brought him higher and higher with just the right amount of pressure.

Yes, Daniel was nearly there. Jack knew all the indications that guaranteed they would indeed reach their orgasms together. This was the only clear thought left in his brain; otherwise he listened to the demands of his body. He fell into a harsh rhythm, accompanying each stroke and push with a gasp. Perfect. He was alive and everything had turned out well. With a sense of utter ecstasy Jack spilled his seed into Daniel. And he was proud when he felt when he felt Daniel come at the same moment over his hand, while Daniel’s inner muscles were clenching his dick tightly. Each contraction prolonged his climax for a few seconds and in return he held Daniel another moment on the crest of the wave, united with him in the best possible way.

When Daniel felt Jack wanted to pull out, he asked, “Stay? Do you think we can manage to turn onto our sides?”

“Sure.” Jack would have tried anything to please Daniel.

Jack wrapped his arm firmly around Daniel’s waist and they maneuvered carefully to a position where Jack was spooning behind him. Daniel squeezed Jack’s arm lying on his stomach and pressed his sweaty body against Jack’s.

For a few minutes neither spoke, then Daniel said in a low voice, “I’m looking forward to spending some time with you in your cabin. What do you think, how many days can we stay there without rousing suspicion?”

“A week? It’s been an eternity since my last vacation. And the same is true for you. But before we go there we should have a little talk with our friend Thor. No beaming out during ... delicate moments.”

Daniel laughed. “Euh, I didn’t really need that image in my head.” He pressed his behind once more against Jack’s groin and added sleepily, but totally content, “One week of sex.”

“Yep. And fishing.”

“I think I’ll be able to distract you from fishing.”

Somehow Jack was convinced that Daniel was right...

--------THE END ----

©Antares, September 2011