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When Destiny Calls
Jack was leaning against one of the support pillars, Sam beside him, Teal'c standing in his normal manner, arms behind him, about a foot to the other side. They watched as Daniel paced small circles, his hands shoved into the pockets of his jeans. Then the length of the carousel, and back again. "You'd think he was excited or something," he said jokingly.
Sam smiled. "He's in love, sir. I've never seen him this happy, or excited."
"Yeah, not even his rocks make him this annoying," Jack replied. The twinkle in his brown eyes belied the gruffness of his voice.
When the first group of passengers flooded through the passageway, Daniel was looking - searching for that sweet, beautiful face.
She followed the crowd, unable to do anything else. She was already straining to see if he was waiting for her. She saw him just seconds before his eyes met hers. The grin on his face made her heart feel as if it were about burst with happiness. She pushed past two men, businessmen her mind thought fleetingly, completely oblivious to the looks of annoyance and then interest.
There she was! God, she was so beautiful! His arms were already open and waiting for her when she rushed into them. When she locked her arms around his neck he gave in to the urge and buried his face against hers, pulled her as close as he could without hurting her. "Hi, Angel."
"Hi, Stud Muffin," she whispered.
He swayed back and forth gently, breathing deeply of her sweet scent, wanting nothing more than to be alone with her.
Daniel looked over at Jack. Who was grinning ear to ear. "Casey, I'd like for you to meet my teammates…friends," he said, pulling slowly away from her. He kept one arm around her shoulders, held her tightly against his side. "Casey, this is Colonel Jack O'Neill, Major Doctor Samantha Carter and Teal'c. Guys, this is Casey Webster."
Casey smiled, shook each hand, then snuggled against Daniel's side, one arm around his waist, the other hand on his chest. "It's nice to meet all of you," she said softly.
Jack couldn't help but notice the way she was clinging to Daniel, as if she were afraid he'd disappear. The same way Daniel was holding onto her. There was no missing the love in their eyes when they looked at one another, either. "Daniel tells us that you knew we were in trouble before the folks at…" he glanced around, "at home did."
She shrugged slightly. "I just…felt it."
Sam smiled. "We're certainly glad that you did! If Daniel hadn't arrived when he did…" She shivered slightly.
Casey looked over at Teal'c, cocked her head slightly. "You are so far from home," she said softly. She could also sense the…duality...that seemed to flow around him. As if there were two entities in one body. She'd ask Daniel about it later.
The large man smiled, inclined his head. "Indeed."
Jack raised an eyebrow, looked at Daniel.
"Not a word, Jack, I swear," Daniel replied. He looked at Casey. "Let's get your luggage. Then I'll bet you're hungry, right?"
She smiled. "A little bit," she admitted. She walked with him toward the carousel, pointed out her bags as they came close enough. He grabbed both, held the straps with one hand, kept the other arm around her.
Jack swept in and took the luggage from Daniel's hand. "Okay, campers, where do we go for lunch?"
"Anywhere is good with me," Sam replied. "Just as long as it's soon. I’m starving!"
The conversation on the way to the parking garage was filled with suggestions of restaurants that were either quickly vetoed by one person or the other, or tossed into the maybe category. Casey remained silent, content to just listen to Daniel and his friends banter playfully back and forth.
Jack turned to Casey. "Do you like Mexican?"
She smiled. "I love Mexican."
"Good. You're gonna love Cazadores!" he exclaimed. He nudged her shoulder with his. "Margaritas?"
She nudged back. "Lime or Strawberry?"
"Strawberry? That's sacrilege!"
She giggled. "Have you ever tried one?"
"Try one. Trust me, it's an entirely new religious experience!"
Jack chuckled. "I'll think about it."
Sam crossed her arms over her chest. "Excuse me. I thought we'd narrowed it down to Italian or seafood. Sir," she added, her sapphire blue eyes twinkling.
The grin that Jack flashed made Casey giggle again. "Well, I say that Casey should get to choose, since she's new to our little group. And she chose Cazadores!"
"She did not!" Daniel exclaimed.
"Sure she did."
"I agree with Daniel Jackson, O'Neill. Casey Webster did not 'choose' the establishment of which you speak," Teal'c said.
"Look, Jack, just because you want to eat greasy Mexican food doesn't mean the rest of us do. You always do this. Why even ask where we want to eat? You never listen anyway," Daniel complained.
"Daniel, that is not true. We always decide democratically. Just because you're a sore loser when your favorite place isn't chosen is no reason to throw a temper tantrum," Jack argued.
"I am not throwing a temper tantrum. I do not throw temper tantrums," Daniel replied.
Jack slid his sunglasses on his face. "You can follow me."
Daniel snorted. "Last time you said that we were lost for three hours."
"We were not lost. I was merely showing you a section of the country you'd never seen before," Jack retorted.
"Yeah. Over and over and over. For three hours."
Casey had been watching the two men with a growing smile on her face. "Do they do this a lot?" she asked Sam.
"All the time," the tall blonde replied.
"They're like an old married couple!" Casey giggled.
"What?" the two men said in unison, turning to stare at her.
"You two are behaving like an old married couple." She saw the horrified looks the two men exchanged. "Oh, please! Two people can behave that way without sharing a bed and swapping bodily fluids!"
Sam burst into laughter, first from the expressions on the faces of the two men, and then at Casey's colorful explanation. Teal'c began to laugh as well, a deep rumble that seemed to vibrate the air around them.
Daniel watched the Jaffa laughing; he'd never seen - nor heard - him laugh so heartily before. Couldn't help but grin. Casey had that effect on people. Making them happy. Her sense of humor making them laugh.
"We do not behave like…like…like that!" Jack said, cutting the air with both hands in a quick chopping motion, the bags swinging dangerously around him.
"Sure you do. It comes from being so close. You two are best friends," Casey replied easily. She cocked her head sideways. "No, closer. More like…brothers. Yep. Brothers."
Jack and Daniel looked at one another. Acknowledged in that look that she was right, that the feelings had almost always been there, even if neither had admitted to them before. "She's annoying when she does that," Jack muttered.
"You aren't going to have to try to keep birthday and Christmas presents a secret from her," Daniel retorted.
"Look, if you two siblings are finished squabbling now, can we go eat?" Sam asked, traces of the tears she'd laughed still in her eyes.
"Okay, Cazadores, here we come!" Jack declared.
"Ja-ack!" Daniel said, that one word a full sentence of complaint.
The older man grinned. "Casey picked it."
"She did not."
"She did so."
"Ahem." Casey stood, her arms crossed over her chest, tapping the pointed toe of one black shoe. "I would like to eat sometime today. Jack, you did sort of steamroller this onto them. The choices were Italian and seafood. Personally, I like either."
"Ha!" Daniel said triumphantly.
"But since you two can't agree on anything, Sam, Teal'c and I will decide."
"You go, girl!" Sam said approvingly.
"That is so not fair," Jack complained. "And I have never 'steamrollered' anyone in my life!"
Casey rolled her eyes, put her fingers on Daniel's lips before he could respond. "We have about three seconds before these two are at it again," she said, looking over at Sam and Teal'c.
"Italian?" Sam asked.
"I concur," Teal' said.
"Good, me too. Do they have Olive Garden around here?"
Sam put her arm around Casey's shoulders and hugged her. "We are going to get along so well!" she declared.
"Now that is not fair!" Jack complained loudly.
"You said I could pick because I'm new to the group," Casey reminded him.
"Yeah, that was when you were picking Cazadores!"
She giggled. "Sam, do you know where the closest Olive Garden is?"
"Not really," the woman admitted.
Daniel sighed. "There's one just down the street from the hotel where we're spending the night." A tidbit of information he'd gleaned from the hotel webpage.
"Okay, you lead," Jack said.
Daniel nodded, took the bags from the older man's hands, and walked toward the bronze-colored Jeep Renegade parked just three stalls from Jack's Ford F250. He tossed them into the back of the vehicle, then reached out and pulled Casey into his embrace. "I missed you," he whispered.
"I missed you, too," she replied.
He nuzzled her cheek, then claimed her lips with his own. Oh, yeah! Sweet and warm and she tastes like heaven, and she feels like heaven, and dear god let me make it through lunch! He worked the combination that granted him access to that sweet mouth: running his tongue over her lips lightly, then with a bit more pressure, then just the tip on her lower lip...and Open Sesame! He stroked her tongue eagerly with his own…reaching, tasting, touching her.
She felt the effects of the kiss move from the top of her head to the tips of her toes, warming all points in between. When he slowly withdrew his tongue from her mouth, she followed, eagerly…shyly…needing to taste him, touch him as he'd done with her. Her hands were in his hair, holding him close. She pressed her body closer to his, felt his arms tighten around her. So safe…so completely safe and loved…would she ever become accustomed to this incredible feeling of happiness? Goddess, don't ever let me take it for granted, she prayed silently.
If he didn't back away right now he wasn't even going to make it out of the parking lot! Slowly, and certainly with reluctance, he began to pull away. He planted tiny kisses all around her lips before raising his head and looking at her. Her eyes were still closed, her lips swollen and dark pink. And that so turned him on!
She opened her eyes slowly. "I hope you aren't planning on staying for dessert," she said softly.
Daniel chuckled. "The dessert I want isn't on any menu," he whispered in her ear. Grinned at the shiver that moved over the slender body in his arms.
"Hey, you two think you could give it a rest long enough to eat?" a familiar voice called. Jack had backed up, the pickup sitting directly behind the jeep now.
"Bite me, Jack," Daniel grumped. But he turned loose of Casey, walked her to the passenger door, held it open while she climbed in. Enjoyed the flash of inner thigh as she slid onto the seat. Knew exactly what lay between those beautiful legs. And groaned mentally. He was not going to make it. He was going to keel over dead with need before he could get her to that room!
By the time they arrived at the restaurant, it was almost one p.m. The lunch crowd was beginning to thin out. Which meant that they didn't have to wait for a table, a blessing for which Daniel was extremely thankful.
"Wow, awesome tat, man!" one of the busboys said to Teal'c, motioning to the gold emblem on his forehead. "It's symbolic, right?"
"Indeed. A symbol of my former slavery," Teal'c replied.
"I can relate, my brother," the young man said.
"I am not your brother," the Jaffa said.
"I think it's just a form of agreement," Casey whispered, standing next to the huge man.
"Indeed," Teal'c said. He raised an eyebrow at the young man. Who suddenly seemed to find himself speechless as he looked from Casey to Sam and back again, staring at each woman appreciatively.
Jack gave the busboy his best 'angry colonel' look, which had the young man scampering toward the kitchen. "Bet he's hitched high now," he mumbled.
Daniel snickered. "Probably."
"I do not understand, O'Neill," Teal'c said, as he sat down between Jack and Casey. "What does it mean if one is 'hitched high'?"
Jack glanced at the two ladies sitting at the table. "I'll explain later, Teal'c," he said.
Casey leaned toward the Jaffa. "When he does, explain it to me, will you?"
"I will be most happy to do so," Teal'c replied.
Sam lost the battle to control the urge to laugh. She began to giggle. "You might as well just explain it, sir."
The older man looked over his menu at her. "I don't think so. Not in mixed company."
Now Casey began to frown, examining the phrase carefully, in conjunction with the conversation and what had happened. Began to blush brightly when the answer formed her mind. She leaned toward Teal'c again. "I'm not sure, but I think it means he has an erection," she whispered.
"Why would that young man have an erection at his place of employment? What would stimulate him in such a way?" the Jaffa asked quietly.
Daniel nearly burst trying not to laugh. The two of them sounded so damned innocent! "I think, Teal'c, it was probably caused by what he thought about when he was looking at Casey and Sam."
"And what would he be thinking that would cause such a…" the large man frowned. Comprehension dawned in his dark features. "I believe I understand."
Casey was hiding behind her menu, absolutely certain that the red from her cheeks was reflecting off the shiny paper. She peeked over the top of the open menu. Sam and Daniel were laughing. Jack was blushing, but grinning. Teal'c was looking…she wasn't quite sure. Perplexed maybe. She felt Daniel's hand on her knee. He wasn't trying to grope her, just offer reassurance. She wrapped her fingers around his, he squeezed lightly, then pulled his hand away from hers.
"Oh, before we forget," Daniel said, pulling the prescription bottle from his jacket pocket. He opened it, handed one of the pills to her, then took her purse from the back of her chair and dropped it inside, sliding the strap back where it had been. "You will be able to find that later, right?"
She looked at him, scrunched up her nose. "Ha ha. I'll have you know I don't have half of my…stuff…with me right now. Because of security at the airport."
He grinned at her, winked, and then signaled to one of the waitresses. "Can we get a glass of water, please?"
"Sure, would you all like water?" she asked, receiving nods from everyone at the table. "I'll be right back."
A discussion on what sounded good began, everyone agreeing that the choice wasn't easy, as everything on the menu was appealing. The waitress returned with the water, took their drink orders.
Casey took the pill. Glanced at Daniel. Felt her temperature rising. She wanted to be in his arms so badly! She thought about the special purchase she'd made while at the mall picking up their wedding bands. Hoped that he would like it. Smiled mischievously. Was pretty sure that he would.
Daniel saw that smile, the gleam that filled her eyes for just a few seconds. Barely suppressed the shudder of excitement that filled him. "So what are you having, babe?"
Jack glanced up, then looked at Sam. "Babe?" he mouthed in disbelief.
Sam just grinned and shook her head slightly.
"I think I'd like the Chicken Alfredo," she replied softly.
"Would you like an appetizer?" he asked.
She shook her head. "The meal comes with salad and bread sticks," she replied.
Daniel nodded. The room had a small refrigerator and a microwave. She could take any leftovers and eat them later. She'd certainly be hungry when he was finished! Another thought that threatened to drive him insane.
"Oh!" Casey exclaimed. "Is there a phone here? I promised to call Kelley as soon as I landed."
"I think there's one by the door," Jack replied.
She nodded, looked at Daniel. "Would you mind ordering for me?"
"Nope. Coffee, iced tea…wine?"
"Whatever you're having," she said. She slid from her chair, glanced at his friends, then decided to give in to her impulse anyway. She leaned over, kissed the top of his head, then hurried toward the entrance. She was quite sure they would be discussing her while she was letting Kelley know that she'd arrived in Denver.
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