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"Trying to make sense of this puzzle
But feeling like the pieces are scattered all around this room
Climbing the fence of my trouble
Falling down once again to try and get there soon
Oh but could I stand and wait for You
Instead of running from this black to find my blue
Oh and when will I just listen to the truth
That the pieces of this puzzle just don't fit without You…
I have found that I can find
My completeness only in You, in You…"
Steven Speaks "Puzzle Pieces"
She stared into her mug of coffee. Much better than watching...them. What she saw when she did occasionally glance up had her cringing inside. White. That damned white glow! It completely surrounded them. The first time she’d ever seen that glow, it had surrounded Janet and her dad. Now...
Soft laughter reached her ears. Her eyes moved automatically...unintentionally... toward the sound. He was smiling, even from this distance she could see the mirth in his dark eyes.
Unable to stand the display any longer, Casey shoved her chair backwards, fled the commissary, passing her teammates and Husband as she raced out the door, not even recognizing them in her haste to escape.
"Casey?" Daniel said, watching his Wife's retreating figure.
Jack frowned, glanced around the room. "Okay, I give up. What was that about?"
"I have no idea," Daniel murmured. Casey was standing in front of the elevator, her arms around her narrow waist, her head down. She was hiding. He heaved a mental sigh. Something was wrong. She’d been unusually quiet...she’d become almost sullen since the ‘family get-together’ the night before, a celebration for Jack’s return to them, safe and sound. Casey had spent the majority of the evening staring at Janet, or Teal'c, a small frown tugging at those perfectly arched eyebrows. "I suppose I'd better find out what's going on."
"She was upset when I had a chance to talk to her alone last night," Sam said.
He started slightly...was left to wonder if his teammate and best friend's thoughts were following the same path as his own. "Did she say anything?"
Sam shook her head. "I had the feeling that she wanted to say something...but then she just...pulled back."
Daniel's frown deepened. Gary had politely declined the invitation to join them for dinner, claiming that he needed to fly to Kansas City to deal with a problem that had occurred at Franklin Enterprises. He hadn’t thought anything about it at the time, until Casey had mentioned that it had been odd that her father hadn’t begged off until he’d learned that Janet was going to be present. "I think something this might have something to do with Gary...and Janet."
"Maybe they had a fight," Jack offered.
"That's possible," Sam agreed.
"And that would have her torn up," Daniel sighed audibly. "Feeling guilty because she'd want to be there for her best friend, and at the same time, be on her father's 'side' of the issue."
"Poor kid," Jack muttered. "Just so you know, Danny-boy, if Sam and I fight, it's perfectly acceptable for you to be on my side."
Sam lightly punched the colonel's arm. "That is so sexist!"
"What?" Jack asked, rubbing his bicep. "It's expected that a man's best friend stand beside him!"
"Daniel is my friend too!" Sam exclaimed.
"Guys, if you two fight, I'm staying out of it," Daniel retorted. "I have to find out what's wrong. Talk to you later."
With matching nods, his teammates watched him walk toward his wife, his hands shoved into the pockets of his BDU pants.
"I should have you up on charges," Jack said, turning his attention to Sam. "Striking a superior officer."
"Higher ranking, maybe," Sam retorted, before turning on her heel and entering the commissary.
"That's insubordination, major," Jack growled.
"So, write me up."
His cheek twitched. "I should, ya know. I mean, if I let you get by with hitting me, the next thing you know, Childers over there will be smacking the crap out of Anderson, and Walter will be poking the general! Discipline will completely break down."
"Like I said, write up the report," Sam grinned.
"And get kicked out of your bed? Not gonna happen, major."
With a chuckle, Sam walked into the commissary. Waved a greeting to Janet, who had looked up as she and Jack entered. The fact that the petite doctor was sitting with Teal'c never even registered. Janet had become a part of SG-1 when Jack's sister had visited. She'd always been friends with the individual members of the team. But her actions, her willingness to put her own career on the line for one of those members had changed that relationship. It was a subtle change, but one recognized by all parties involved, nonetheless.
Daniel stopped beside his wife. "Hey."
"Hey," she replied softly.
"Need to talk?"
Casey glanced up at him. He was watching the light above the elevator door. Could she voice her...fears? Would he find the situation - if that's what it could be called - as disturbing as she did? Or would his ability to accept the...view points...of others have him shrugging his shoulders over her concerns? For the moment, all she had were suspicions. "No," she replied finally.
"Are you sure? You seem...upset."
She sighed. "I am. But for the moment, it's my problem to deal with."
Oh, he so hated being shut out! Even more difficult when this was the second time in three days. Whatever was bothering her, he wanted to fix it. And that, pal, is probably the very reason she's not telling you a thing. Casey had an independent streak...all that had been left to her after an abusive childhood. She had her own way of dealing with problems. Often, she refused to even discuss what bothered her until she'd worked through it herself. "I'm here when you're ready to talk."
His quiet, gentle strength enabled her to reach out, to be so much stronger than she'd ever suspected she could be. His willingness to let her work through problems on her own, always there when she needed him, was one facet of his personality that endeared him to her heart all the more. She slid her arm around his waist, rested her head on his shoulder. "Thanks," she said softly.
He dropped a kiss on the top of her head. "Did you eat lunch?"
"Well, I was going to, but then-" she shook her head slightly.
"Let's go to Sonic," he suggested quietly.
"I like the way you think," she sighed. She happened to look toward the commissary when the door opened. The two people she’d been trying to ignore were directly in her line of site.
Janet was laughing again, reached out to touch Teal’c’s arm. As she did so, the light that seemed to surround the two 'flared', and Casey barely bit back her gasp. Unbidden, the words of the alternate Ferretti echoed in her mind...
"Well, let your Ferretti know that he doesn't know what he's missing."
Remembering some of the things that Janet had shared with her and Sam on their infrequent 'girl's night out' excursions, Casey's eyes widened slightly. Watched as Teal'c smiled down at her best friend. Okay, there had to be a logical explanation. They aren’t getting kinky with dad…they just aren’t! That white light had only been around Dad and Janet…okay, obviously there was something going on between these two, but still…the three of them?
There’s a perfectly logical explanation, she assured herself for the second time in as many minutes.
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