<<Previous | Story Intro | Return to Stories | Next >>
"...My head is poundin' as I'm sittin' here
And my mind's not workin' like it should..."
"Whiskey Night" by REO SpeedWagon
Daniel stood leaning against the doorframe of the open double French doors, his arms crossed over his chest. Watching. He couldn't resist standing there, watching her. She was wearing a pair of jeans that were so faded as to be nearly white and hugged her slender hips and ass like a second skin. At that particular moment that fine ass was up in the air as she leaned over, on her hands and knees, one hand supporting her, the other spreading peat from the bag beside her. The sight was enough to send a dozen different lustful thoughts skittering across his brain.
She was working in her garden, carefully mulching the rosebushes she'd just cut down to eight inch stalks. Getting them ready for winter, she'd told him. A flat of autumn annuals that she'd picked up earlier in the day waited by her feet. Pink New England Asters, gold African Daisies, and several red and gold Pot Marigold plants awaited her loving attention. Those particular plants, she'd said, would keep the garden 'colorful' until the first snowfall.
She sat back on her feet, wiped her forehead with the back of her arm, then leaned over to scoop more of the mulch around the plants. When she picked up the garden trowel, he knew she was ready to plant her flowers. Which meant that she'd be finished within the hour. He hadn't believed that it was possible to plant flowers in late October. But a trip to the local nursery with her had proven him wrong. She'd decided to do the gardening today because he needed to...and had been...working on several translations that would be required by several teams Monday morning. With all of the tension over locating Tem, and trying to find a way to take the snaky bastard out, he'd been somewhat distracted. And in the meantime, the work, the needed translations, had piled up. He sighed. At the moment, all they could do regarding their newest threat was wait to see what SG-3, the team that would be sent to South America to scout out the island the Goa'uld was living on, could find. If what they'd heard was true, getting to him was going to be next to impossible.
He shook his head to dispel the disquieting thoughts. Right now, all he wanted to think about was her. He grinned when she glanced over her shoulder, saw him standing here. "Hey, Angel."
"Hey, yourself. I thought you were working."
"Nope. Just out here taking in the view." His eyes went over her hips and ass again.
"I'm telling you, babe, the view is spectacular from here."
She couldn't help it, she burst into giggles. Daniel had way of making her feel as if she were the most beautiful, sexiest woman in the world. A look, even a quick glance could fill those beautiful blue eyes with desire, and set her heart hammering against her ribs. "I won't be much longer," she said.
"Whatever. Dinner smells good."
She smiled again. She'd stuck a pot roast into the slow cooker, tossed in new potatoes, carrots, parsnips and onion quarters, just before she'd left the house to run errands. "It won't be ready for at least two more hours."
"Still smells good," he replied. He'd stepped out onto the deck, was leaning over, his arms resting on the wooden railing, his fingers linked loosely in front of him.
"Well, I see you're doing a bit of gardening today," a voice called. Emma Hanks, their feisty, elderly neighbor, stood beside the fence.
"Hi, Emma! Yeah, thought I'd better take care of my rose bushes while I have the chance, and I saw the ad in the paper for the sale at Broderick's, so I picked up a few plants. Just for a bit of color," Casey replied.
"They're lovely," the older woman nodded approvingly. She looked up at Daniel. "Hello there, Handsome."
He grinned. The woman was old enough to be his grandmother. And an incorrigible flirt. "Hi, Emma."
"So are you getting back into the swing of things after your vacation?" Emma asked.
"Unfortunately," Casey grumbled.
The elderly woman laughed. "Yeah, sometimes we need a vacation to recover from our vacations!"
Casey shook her blonde head. "I was all nice and relaxed. Then I had to go back to work."
"Well, the Holidays are coming up. You'll get a break here and there," Emma replied.
She couldn't help but giggle. "Some break...I'll spend my days off cooking and cleaning!"
"Piggly Wiggly deli and paper plates," Emma responded immediately. "And if they don't like dust bunnies, send 'em home!"
The giggle became a full throated laugh. "I like the way you think!"
"Took years for me to figure it out," Emma winked. "I'll leave you to your gardening, and Handsome over there to his gawking."
"Gawking? Me?" Daniel asked, feigning innocence.
"You've been watching her for the past twenty minutes," the old woman huffed. "Not that I can blame you," she said, winking again.
Casey looked over at him. He grinned unabashedly. She shook her head, unable to hide her smile.
"I'll talk you kids later," Emma said. "Have a nice evening."
"You too, Emma," Casey replied.
"See you later, Emma," Daniel said, watching the old woman walk back toward her house.
"Twenty minutes, huh?"
"She's exaggerating," he grinned.
"I doubt it."
"Hey, I told you I'm out here for the view."
She smiled. "It will only cause you problems."
His grin broadened. "Yeah, probably. But you're always so willing to help me out with all of my...problems."
"Yes, I am, aren't I?" A flash of mischief filled her eyes. "I'm such a good, dutiful little wife."
Daniel laughed out loud. "Dutiful? Oh, I don't think so!"
"Excuse me? I most certainly am!"
"Are not. You argue with me about everything!"
"I don't either!"
"Oh, you so do!"
"Oh, I so do not!" She was standing now, her hands on her hips, her eyes flashing. When she realized what he'd done, watched him laugh even harder, she picked up a handful of mulch and threw it in his direction. "Oh! You!"
"Love ya, babe," he chuckled.
She giggled. "Love you, too." She knelt back down, began to dig holes for the waiting plants.
He walked down the steps from the deck to the soft grass. It was still green, proof that so far autumn had been mild in Silver Springs. Which probably meant they were in for one hell of a cold winter. He settled on the ground beside her, content to watch her as she dumped each plant from its plastic container into her hand, gently broke the soil loose, then placed it into the waiting hole, carefully scooping the dirt around it.
She hadn't 'seen' anything since the night during their 'road trip', when information about Kinsey and his condition had been 'dumped' on her, as she often referred to the sudden influx of images and emotions. She continued to 'search' each pending mission report that was filed, before any of the teams embarked. Four had been scrubbed altogether, due to what she'd seen. Five others had been put on hold for the same reason. She hadn't seen any danger for SG-3 and their 'fishing trip'. She hadn't had much hope of them learning anything, either.
"We'll get him, sooner or later," she said softly.
A smile tugged at his lips. Did she read his mind, or was she just so 'in tune' with him that it was easy to guess what he was thinking? "Hopefully sooner than later," he replied.
"Hopefully. I just don't understand what he's waiting for," she sighed. "If it's true about his Giant Jaffa, what's keeping him from just showing up here, and forcing his way in?"
"They might be big, but they're still susceptible to bullets. Armor piercing bullets can, and will, take them down. The SGC is set up so that it's possible to contain an attacker on a single level, in one section. If he has Kinsey, he knows that," Daniel replied. The idea of 'giant' Jaffa was still a bit unnerving. The Jaffa were already...big. Tall...muscular...big. Just how much 'bigger' were these guys?
"So he must be looking for an easier way to get in. A...key..." she said. Frowned slightly as the word passed her lips. Key?
"Probably." He noticed the frown, but said nothing. If she 'saw' something, he'd be the first to know.
For days she'd tried to see anything connected to Tem, around him. Hadn't been able to see...or feel...or hear anything. A visit with Miss Eloise assured her that her gift was still as strong as ever; in fact, the old seer insisted that she grew stronger every day. And had ascertained that there were no...barriers...that shielded him from her 'view'. There was, the old woman had said, nothing new for her to see. She sighed. "It would help if we could find his weakness."
Daniel was well aware of her attempts to search for any information about the Goa'uld. He couldn't say that he was at all pleased about them. It was bad enough when images came spontaneously. For her to be actively searching for what could be, probably would be very disturbing sights, made him uneasy. What she'd learned about Kinsey still gave her nightmares. "We'll find it. Just the fact that he never leaves the shelter of his building, or his villa, lets us know he's afraid of something."
"Yeah, dying," she replied.
He'd been unable to locate any information about a sarcophagus being taken from anywhere in the Cascade Mountains. Which led him to believe that it had been moved long before anyone who would keep records of such things arrived. But Casey hadn't been able to answer definitively whether or not he had it, or if it even functioned. He frowned slightly. "If he is, there's a reason."
"If we could find that sarcophagus, it would help," she said.
"Yeah, it would." He glanced up at the clear, blue sky. "Let's not talk about him."
She looked over her shoulder at him. "All right."
"Let's talk about what you want for Christmas."
Casey sighed. Since Daniel had come into her life, she'd been given more in nine and a half months than she had in her entire lifetime. "I have everything I want. I have a beautiful home. Filled with everything my heart could desire. More importantly, I have you. There's nothing left that I could possibly want," she replied softly.
Again his lips curved upward. Giving things to her, spoiling her, was just so damned fun, even more so if she fought him. She'd told him what Christmas had been like for her as a child. He had determined that every gift would be wrapped in the shiniest paper that was made, and the biggest bows he could find would be on top of them. "Nothing? Jewelry, maybe?"
She glanced at him again. "I have the most beautiful rings in the world on my finger. And diamond earrings. I don't need anything else."
Sam and Janet had told him that he couldn't go wrong getting her a diamond heart pendant. Or a diamond tennis bracelet. Or both. But he wanted to get her more than just those two things. Oh, he'd found a few books he was certain she'd enjoy. And he for damned sure was going to get a teddy or two...although he'd readily admit those were more for him than for her. "Come on, Case, help me out, here," he said softly. "I want our first Christmas together to memorable."
She stopped what she was doing, sat back and looked at him. "Oh, Daniel, don't you understand? Just being with you will make it perfect! And the fact that it will be our first Christmas will make it memorable."
"I'm going to the mall, and I'm going to buy every damned thing I see, unless you give me a clue!" he threatened.
She giggled. "Now that could be interesting!"
He reached out, lightly ran his hand up and down her back. Couldn't help but smile inwardly as her body arched toward his touch...just like it always did. "Whatever you want, Angel," he whispered.
There it was. The phrase he uttered so often. That always made her heart race with emotions...excitement, love, wonder. "A new robe would be nice," she admitted, after a few minutes of silence.
Finally! Bring out the hallelujah chorus, she'd at last given him a straight, serious answer! "Okay. That's doable."
Once again those green eyes flickered in his direction. "I've always..." she broke off, shook her head. He was so generous - she'd learned early in their relationship to be very careful about what she said in front of him...to mention that she 'needed' anything resulted in it winding up in her hands within days. If she simply 'wanted' something, the same thing happened. She understood that Daniel enjoyed 'spoiling' her. Sam and Janet had admonished her to let him, that it gave him so much joy to give her gifts. But it still made her uncomfortable most of the time; she still worried about taking advantage of that generosity. The deep-seated fear that things would take the place of his love was never far away.
"You've always...?" he coaxed gently.
"I've always wanted a nice pair of high-heeled suede boots."
He grinned. He'd have to sneak into her closet and determine what size she'd need. Sam would have an idea as to what color would be best. "Also doable."
"What about you? What would you like for Christmas?" She'd become quite skillful at turning the conversation away from herself when he was probing too deeply.
Okay, a robe and boots. And the books. Definitely the jewelry - just to watch her eyes light up. He felt like a kid again, like he had when his parents had been alive, anxious for Christmas to arrive, only this time, it was because he was excited about giving...to the woman who held his very soul in her soft hands. "Haven't given it much thought."
Like Daniel had decided to do for her, she'd determined to buy books for him. After entering into the social services system, he had focused on his school work, and little else, he'd told her. He'd never been encouraged to read for enjoyment, although he'd always found refuge in books, especially history books; no doubt a love fostered by his parents before they'd been killed. But no one had steered him in the direction of the classics: Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, Oliver Twist, Moby Dick, Treasure Island, Robinson Crusoe. She'd located a set online, leather bound, in a bookshop in Chicago. She'd placed the order, put the charge on her credit card, and was having them delivered to Janet's house. "There has to be something you'd like to have," she said softly.
"Let's see...Angel of my own, have it...most beautiful woman in the world, got it...home of my own, yep, have that too, nope can't think of a thing," he grinned.
She sat back on her heels. "Wait a minute! You push and prod for me to tell you what I want, but then give me the same answer when I ask you? I suppose that's perfectly fine?"
"Absolutely," he replied, his grin nearly splitting his face.
Her eyes narrowed. "One of these days I'm going to go gold-digger on you!"
He laughed out loud. "Fat chance!"
When the last marigold plant had been tucked into place, she gathered her tools, the empty containers and the cardboard flat box they'd been packed in, and headed for the garage. Daniel followed. She wiped the tools carefully, put them away in the bin that she'd found at a local home improvement store. Tossed the empty containers into the trash, broke down the cardboard for recycling, then pulled the cotton gloves from her hands. "I have an idea or two for your gift," she told him.
"Oh, really. Like what?"
She smiled up at him. "You'll just have to wait and see."
There hadn't been a Christmas since his parents had been killed that had been anticipated. Now, he couldn't wait! "Just a hint?"
"Well...there's you..." She wrapped her arms around his waist.
"Me, uh huh..." he said, lowering his head, nuzzling her cheek.
"And me," she said softly, one hand moving over his hip, to his ass, the other sliding up his chest.
"You...yeah," he murmured.
She pressed a kiss against the skin exposed by the open top button of his flannel shirt.
"What else?" He was placing tiny kisses over her jaw, working his way to her throat.
"Mmm..." It was hard to concentrate when he was kissing her like...that! "Bed," she mumbled.
"Oh, I...like...the...sound...of that," he replied in between the kisses and nibbles he was lavishing on the soft, fragrant skin of her neck.
"I thought you might," she replied breathlessly.
"Clothes involved?" He'd pulled away slightly, his fingers tugging on the buttons of her sweater.
"Absolutely not," she replied, unbuttoning his shirt, pushing the material open, exposing his strong chest. She moaned softly when his hands slid beneath her sweater, over the lace of her bra.
"Wanna do something?" he asked, his breath coming faster, her fingers setting fire to his skin as she caressed him.
"I thought that's what we were doing," she replied, just before she lowered her head an licked a hard, brown nipple.
He gasped slightly. "Backseat."
She looked up at him, cast a glance at the Jeep. "Backseat?"
"Whatever you want," she whispered. She cocked her head sideways.
He groaned. No! Not now! Of all the damned times for something to 'come through'! "Later," he whispered. "Whatever it is, we'll deal with it later."
"No, we won't," she whispered in reply. "We need to head for the base. We have another problem."
"Aw, hell," he muttered. He caressed her breasts gently. "Ten minutes."
She giggled. "Daniel, you can't make love in ten minutes. It takes you at least thirty."
"We wait until they call," he responded.
She shook her head. "This is important."
He dropped his head forward, his chin resting on his chest. "No fair," he grumbled.
"You're telling me?" She was quickly re-buttoning her sweater.
Daniel smiled. He knew...understood...that she was burning just as hot as he was. He also knew that if she was insisting that they head for the base, there was a reason. Even if she didn't know exactly what it was at the moment. "We have to get our ID's," he said.
She nodded. "I'm sorry."
He dropped a kiss onto those sweet lips. "So am I, Angel. Later. We'll finish what we started."
"That's a promise," she replied.
Clothes adjusted, they hurried into the house. Casey turned off the slow cooker, wrapped a tea towel around the ceramic insert, and sat it in the refrigerator. Daniel took the time to call Jack, knowing that he was with Sam. The older man promised to call Teal'c, and cut the connection. Daniel opened the lock box where anything to do with the SGC was kept, pulled out their ID tags, and stuffed them into his hip pocket.
"Leave the lamp on," he said, grabbing his boots.
Casey turned on the lamp that sat on the sofa table. Without a doubt it would be late, and dark, when they returned home. She slid her feet into her shoes, followed him out the door.
A A A A A A
Twenty minutes later the team was assembled in the conference room, still wearing their civilian clothes. General Hammond had been called in a mere ten minutes before Casey had 'felt' that something was wrong. "SG-12 was sent to P9X 794," he said without preamble, as soon as the team had taken their seats.
"And this is where, sir?" Jack asked, frowning slightly.
"Where we believe Tem is hiding his fleet," the general replied.
"Right," Jack nodded.
"We received a message about thirty minutes ago. SG-12 has been doing reconnaissance, staying out of sight of the villagers, and the Jaffa who occupy a nearby..." the general shuffled through his notes, "what they describe as a castle."
"And the message, sir?" Sam asked.
"It seems that a Goa'uld has shown up," Hammond said, watching the faces of his premier team.
"Oy!" Jack said softly.
"We're sure it's not Tem?" Daniel asked immediately. If Tem had a means to get back and forth without the Stargate, it would explain his seeming hesitation in attacking the SGC to gain control of the Ancient device. It would mean that he wasn't hesitant, he didn't need it!
The general nodded. "Major Anderson reports that the tattoo that the Jaffa who have accompanied this Goa'uld are different than those of the local Jaffa."
"Could this be a good thing?" Jack asked. "If this Goa'uld takes over Tem's fleet, then we don't have to worry about that snake getting it."
"That is a possibility that I'd like to consider," the general said. "However, if this so far unnamed Goa'uld is already powerful enough to attempt to take the fleet, adding more ships to his inventory is not something I want happening."
"I'm sending SG-2 and -6 with you. I 'd like to see that Goa'uld taken out. And Tem's fleet destroyed, or at least knocked down to size," was the reply.
"In fifteen minutes. I've had to call both teams to the base," Hammond responded.
"Let's get geared up, campers," Jack said, then glanced at his commanding officer.
"Go. Back here in fifteen."
"Yes, sir," Jack replied.
A A A A A A
Daniel stripped off his clothes, pulled on the BDU pants that waited in his locker. "Damn it...friggin' damned snakes!" he muttered. He wadded his flannel shirt into a ball and hurled it into the locker, shook his head when it bounced off of the back and fell to the floor. "Damn it!" He picked it up, shook it out, draped it over a hook.
"Get interrupted, Danny?" Jack asked, a grin on his face.
"Not only that, Casey had made a pot roast, with vegetables and everything," the younger man grumbled.
"Well, that's the way it goes."
He glanced over at his friend. "What about you?"
Jack grimaced. "Not exactly."
Instantly concerned, knowing what his relationship with Sam meant to Jack, Daniel turned to face his best friend. "Is everything all right?"
"Yeah. We just...well, we had an argument.
"Argue? You? I don't believe it," Daniel teased.
"Yeah, well believe it," Jack retorted. "I don't see what the big deal is about me watching my hockey games. She knows I like hockey."
"You like hockey. You love Sam. See the difference?" Daniel asked.
"Hey, it's the beginning of the season," the older man complained.
"Sam wouldn't be upset about you watching the games, unless she had other plans," Daniel pointed out.
"She said she didn't."
"When did she say that?"
"When I asked her what she had planned for the day."
"And when did you ask?"
"This morning. After we made love."
"Uh huh. So you make love, roll over, ask her if she has any plans, she says no, and you head straight for the television," Daniel said.
"It wasn't like that...exactly."
Daniel grinned. "They never mean it when they say they don't have plans, you know."
"Yeah? Where the hell was this information this morning? And why can't they just say what they mean? If she wanted to do something, why didn't she just say so?"
The young archaeologist shrugged. "They're women, Jack. Don't ask me to explain them. I don't have a clue."
"You knew about the plan thing," Jack pointed out. Sara had always told him what she wanted to do. The fact that he'd been home so sporadically for years, so that when he was there his wife tried to cram everything she could into those days, evaded him.
"I've also been married for eight months. Case and I have had a few arguments over the subject. If I ask, and she says she doesn't have anything planned, well, I wait about an hour, and suggest something. That's when I find out exactly what she does have in mind. Usually," he added, a frown on his face. There had been the Saturday when she'd said she didn't have anything planned, although, had he picked up on it immediately, he would've realized she was upset by his question. He'd gone into his den to work, only to emerge two hours later to the cold shoulder and silent treatment. It had taken the remainder of the weekend to get her to finally admit that she'd wanted to go for a picnic on Pike's Peak. Something she claimed to have told him about several times during the week, and the night before. He was most certain that she hadn't.
"Why can't women be more like us? Just say what the hell they're thinking, instead of trying to drive us nuts?"
"Because we wouldn't be happy then, either," Daniel grinned.
"Hmmph!" Jack snorted. "Try me!"
A A A A A A
"So then he flops down on the couch, and starts watching his hockey game," Sam said. "I spent an hour just trying to get his attention to find out if he wanted breakfast!"
"Men can be so clueless," Casey nodded. "If they'd just listen to what we're saying, they'd understand what we want. I had this beautiful Saturday all planned last summer. I'd been hinting about it all week, mentioning it every chance I could, building it up, letting him know that we were going to have a wonderful time, and he gets up, drinks his coffee, and asks me if I have any plans! Well, duh! I figured if he didn't know, even after I'd told him the night before that I had the picnic basket ready, then I wasn't going to spell it out for him! So he disappeared into his office for two freaking hours. And then gave me the sad puppy dog eyes and the 'what's wrong whine' when he finally figured out I was pissed!"
"I know what you mean! After that damned game was off, he walks into the bedroom...I was lying on the bed reading a book...stretches out beside me, and thinks it's playtime! Then he gets all pissy when I want to finish my book!" Sam declared.
"Men...gotta love 'em, cause they won't let us shoot 'em," Casey grinned.
Sam shook her head, giggled softly. "I don't mind when Jack wants to watch a game. But, I just thought it would be nice to spend the day in bed, not doing anything necessarily, but just...be together. I even told him that. Before we went to sleep I told him that being in bed with him, just cuddling, sounded like a great way to spend the day."
"Was he still awake?" Casey asked dryly.
"I guess not," Sam replied.
"Well, we can leave all of our domestic tribulations behind for awhile," Casey said, reaching for her vest.
"To be honest, I'd rather stay home and fight with Jack. Making up is such fun," Sam grinned.
"Oh, yeah!" Casey agreed, her eyes full of laughter.
Still laughing, the women left the locker room, caught up with the male members of the team, and headed back down to the briefing room. Their giggles had the men exchanging nervous glances. The laughter died as they sat down, joining the members of the two teams who'd be going with them on a mission to take out an unknown Goa'uld, and try to prevent the one on Earth from having the ability to attack the defenseless planet.
<<Previous | Story Intro | Return to Stories | Next >>