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When Destiny Calls
Casey had pulled on her bikini panties and a bra as soon as she'd finished putting lotion on her body, something that Daniel had watched her do with a wicked little smile on his face. He offered to help her, but she giggled and refused, telling him that she was hungry, he was hungry, and if they were going to eat any time soon, he needed to stay on his side of the room. He'd laughed, and dropped the towel that had been around his waist. He wasn't completely hard, but she knew that one touch from her would make him that way. A thought that had made her giddy with excitement.
Daniel had located the coffeemaker for the room, and was brewing what would be two very small cups of coffee. When the small carafe was full, he poured the dark liquid into the plastic cups provided. They both sipped from the cups as they continued with their morning routines. It would be enough to hold them until they got to Denny's, he thought. He pulled on clean boxers and jeans, then stood in front of the sink and lathered his face to shave. Glanced over to see that she was sitting cross-legged on the bed watching him.
"That is so sexy," she murmured, slowly unwinding the cord of her hairdryer.
"A man in just blue jeans, shaving," she replied.
He grinned behind the foam on his face, and tucked that little tidbit of information away for later use. He watched in the mirror as she plugged in the dryer and then bent over, tossing her long hair forward as she began to dry it. The curve of her hip, the way those perfect, tantalizing breasts moved as she brushed and dried her hair was enough to make him hard, and to make him nick his throat. He grinned again. Note to self, he thought, don't try to shave and watch her at the same time.
They giggled as they brushed their teeth, playfully trying to push one another away from the sink. When Daniel managed to block her completely, Casey went into the bathroom and spit into the toilet. He'd laughed while she carefully wiped her face on the towel, then rinsed the toothbrush in the tub. She flicked it at him as she walked by, grabbing her toiletries bag to put it back into.
She was amazed by the fact that she felt no embarrassment in letting him see her running around in just her underwear. Which would be rather silly, her brain told her, considering the man has seen you naked, up close and personal. A thought which made her shiver with delight, as images of what they'd done together danced across her mind. She pulled on socks, then her jeans. Following what was habit for her, as soon as he was finished at the sink, she grabbed her make-up bag. She was accustomed to taking turns with Kelley, and always tried to hurry so as not to 'hog' the bathroom in the morning as the two women made themselves ready for work.
He watched her put on her make-up while he pulled on his socks and sneakers. She used very little. She put some sort of lotion on her face. He grinned when she waved her hands over her skin to dry it. A bit of blush. Eye shadow, just at the very edges of her eyelids. A touch of mascara. Lip gloss. She looked fantastic.
Casey grabbed the soft sweater that she'd packed, one of her favorites, the light pink a compliment to her cheeks, tugged it on, made sure that her hair was pulled from inside the collar. She watched as Daniel pulled a gray pullover onto his broad shoulders, down over that wide chest. She pushed her feet into her Reeboks. "I'm ready," she said softly, fluffing her hair one last time with her hands.
He grabbed her wrist when she came close enough to the side of the bed where he was sitting. "You are the most beautiful woman I've ever seen," he said softly.
She blushed, shook her head slightly. "I doubt that. But it's a sweet thought."
He frowned slightly. That adoptive mother of hers had done one hell of a number on her. He wondered briefly where the father had been in all of this. Then pushed the thought aside. The damage was done, regardless of who had done it, or how, or why. He could only hope to ease that hurt, undo some of that damage. "As far as I'm concerned, you are the most beautiful woman in the world. Universe, even." He stood up, pulled her into his arms.
"As long as I please you," she whispered, "that's all I need."
"You please me, Angel," he said softly. "So very much."
She leaned up and kissed him gently, then rubbed the gloss from his lips with her thumb. "Good."
He held her coat while she slipped her arms into the sleeves, grabbed his windbreaker and the room key, put the "Maid Service Requested" sign on the door, and pulled it closed. It hit him at that moment that he'd spent the night with her, the woman who was his Destiny. He couldn't stop grinning.
A A A A A A
The restaurant wasn't busy by the time Casey and Daniel arrived for breakfast. The waitress took them to a booth in the corner, left them with menus and a promise for the requested pot of coffee.
"So," Daniel said, looking over his menu at her, "shall we do some sight-seeing today?"
She glanced out the window. The sun was shining. Which was perfect, she thought. It reflected how happy she was. She explored that feeling for a few seconds. Realized that it was a relatively new experience for her. She'd been…not unhappy…but never had she felt like this before. Not since the first few minutes after she'd learned that she'd been adopted. Life immediately took a turn for the worse for her as soon as she'd been taken from the orphanage. And had not improved until she'd opened the apartment door the night before to find Doctor Daniel Jackson standing there. "That sounds like fun," she said.
He watched her eyes. Had already figured out that he'd learn much more about what she was feeling, thinking, from those limpid green pools than what she'd tell him. She was…happy. He could see it. The thought that he might possibly have something to do with that happiness made his chest swell with love. And not a little pride. "Okay, so where do you want to start?"
She frowned slightly, pursed her lips in thought. Had no idea the effect it was having on the man sitting across from her. "Since the sun is shining, could we go to the top of the Space Needle?"
He grinned. "Whatever you want to do, Casey. We'll start there. Work our way back down to earth?"
She giggled. "Okay. Maybe we could walk on the piers. I haven't done that in ages."
The waitress put a carafe of coffee on the table, glanced at Casey with a smirk of impatience, then smiled at Daniel. "What can I get for you, Handsome?"
Daniel glanced at Casey. Saw the way she lowered her eyes, seemed to shrink in on herself, as if she were trying to disappear, her slender shoulders hunched forward, her arms around her waist. "What sounds good to you, babe?"
She looked up at him. Saw the look of love that filled those incredible blue eyes. "I was just going to have a bowl of oatmeal," she said softly.
"You're sure that's all you want?"
She nodded. "Maybe a glass of orange juice."
He looked up at the waitress. "My Wife would like oatmeal, and a large OJ. I'll take the Grand Slam."
The waitress had the decency to blush slightly. She hadn't seen rings, but she wasn't about to say anything! "How would you like your eggs?"
"Over easy. Hash browns. I'll take a large glass of OJ as well." With a nod, the woman walked away. He looked at Casey. Was damned glad the waitress hadn't! Her eyes were as big as saucers.
He shrugged. Gave her a shy smile. "You will be, as soon as I can arrange it," he replied.
She shook her head, then began to giggle. "Think the next time you could ask first?"
"We're gonna get married more than once?" Her giggle turned into a full-throated laugh. It was the first time he'd heard it. It was as beautiful as her giggle. And that sexy, sweet little whimper she gave just before she came and cried out his name. He tamped down on that thought, struggled to maintain control over his body. "We should make one stop before we go to the Space Needle," he said quietly.
"Jewelry store. I want my ring on your finger as soon as possible," he replied. He calmly filled her coffee cup, then his.
She was staring at him again. How could he sit there so cool…after that? Rings? Wife? Marriage? Was he serious? If she were honest with herself, and most of the time she was, she wanted the security of marriage. But she hadn't expected it to happen so soon, that he'd be so…eager…to have her, take her as his wife!
He glanced at her. Oh, hell! She was crying! He hadn't meant to make her cry! Oh god, what if she didn't want to marry him? "Case?"
"You say the sweetest things…just what I need to hear, right when I need to hear it," she whispered. "I love you so much it hurts!"
He grinned. Took her hand, rubbed his thumb over her knuckles. "I love you, too, Angel. So much it hurts." He leaned across the table, wiped the tear from her cheek. "Now, about that jewelry store?"
"I think there are a couple of them in the mall," she said slowly. "I don't need anything fancy. Just a plain band will be fine."
That simple statement told him volumes about her, and her life as a child. "I want you to have the biggest, brightest, shiniest diamond I can afford. I have a little money put back. So I should be able to get you a decent ring," he said quietly, firmly.
She shook her head. "We'll see," she murmured softly.
He frowned slightly. "Casey, look at me," he said gently. Waited for those green eyes to meet his. "I want to give you everything. The best of everything. I'm here now. I'm going to take care of you."
Casey shivered, his words going straight to her heart. If she hadn't already been in love with him, those simple declarations would have guaranteed that she'd have fallen deeply. At no time in her life had she ever felt as if there was any person willing to take care of her, protect her. Grandma Rose had done what she could, the best that she could, for the years she'd been alive. But even her love hadn't offered this warmth...certainly she'd never felt so safe. "You…you don't have to," she whispered.
"Yes, I do. Because I love you. I can't do any less for you," he replied.
Another shiver moved over her slender frame. "You can't be real," she said softly. "This is too good…too perfect…it can't be real."
He gripped her fingers tighter. "Do you feel that, Angel?"
"It's real, I promise."
"If you're just a dream, please don't ever let me wake up," she whispered.
"I'm not a dream, Casey." He had a feeling that it would be some time before she could fully accept what was happening to her…to them…as special, as wonderful as it was. Somehow knew that 'special', and 'wonderful', were not words that could ever describe events in her life. A thought that brought a stabbing pain to his heart. Made him all the more determined to protect her, to give her the best, make her happy.
The waitress returned with their breakfast, setting the bowl of oatmeal down in front of Casey with unnecessary force. She couldn't do so with the OJ, not if she didn't want to spill it. A glance at the woman's face told Casey all she needed to know.
Daniel frowned, watched the woman walk away. "She can kiss her tip goodbye," he muttered.
"She's upset, Daniel. She wanted to flirt with you. You shot her down, painfully," Casey said softly.
"Yeah, I'm sitting here with my Wife, and she wants to flirt!"
Casey cleared her throat, then burst into giggles. "Technically, Stud Muffin, I'm not your wife," she said.
He grinned at her. "According to the customs and mores of nearly a dozen civilizations that I can name, after last night you most certainly are!"
She shook her head stubbornly. "There was no ceremony, no gods were invoked to bless the union. No dowry was given or received. No vows or promises exchanged."
"Excuse me, but that was you in my bed last night, wasn't it?" Daniel asked, one eyebrow raised slightly. Her observations poked at his brain. Sounded vaguely…familiar.
"Yes, it was," she replied, blushing.
"Did you tell me that you love me?"
"Did I tell you that I love you?"
"Do you believe that I love you?"
She nodded again.
"Well, then, I'd say those were vows exchanged," he declared gleefully.
She giggled again. "You really hate to lose an argument, don't you?"
He chuckled. "Yep. Don't lose often, either."
"Only because your logic is so convoluted it's hard to follow," she muttered, her eyes dancing with laughter.
"I'd accuse you of hanging around Jack too much, but you don't even know him," Daniel replied.
"I like Jack," she teased. "I think I'll have an ally in him."
"Ally? So you're going to gang up against me?"
"Only if you need ganging up on," she retorted.
"You're supposed to be on my side," he complained.
"I kinda prefer being on your front," she said, lowering her eyes quickly.
He nearly choked on the mouthful of pancake he'd just taken. Began to laugh. "Oh, you are such a wiseass."
"Confucius say, man who marry wiseass, not so dumb," she grinned.
"Confucius also says that woman who doesn't let husband eat breakfast gets no shiny baubles."
She giggled. "Who's stopping you from eating? And the shiny bauble was your idea. Now, if you said no more nookie, well, then I'd be quiet as a little church mouse."
Daniel put down his fork, sat back and let loose with a belly laugh. He hadn't laughed this hard, this much in years. He looked at her, his eyes still crinkled with laughter. "I love you, Angel," he said softly.
"I love you too, Sweetheart," she replied.
Once again his heart did flip-flops. Maybe someday he'd tell her just how much that meant to him. He began to eat, able to finish his breakfast quickly as a result of learning to eat with Marines and SFs on various missions with them. He watched her as she took a few bites, then pushed the remainder of the cereal around in the bowl. "Is it cold? Does it need to be warmed up? Do you want something else?" he asked quietly.
She jerked slightly, looked up at him, shook her head. "It's…it's a lot of oatmeal," she said softly.
He frowned. It was a rather small bowl, he thought. "Are you okay? Not upset…or nervous…or scared?"
She shook her head again. "I'm fine, Daniel, really. It's just…more than I can eat. I'll pay for it," she added, so softly he barely heard the words.
"No, you won't."
"I'm wasting food, I didn't…I should have just ordered a piece of toast," she said.
Her arms went around her waist again. Defensive posture. Protecting herself. From what? Did she expect him to be angry? "Honey, talk to me. Tell me what's wrong."
She smiled. "Nothing is wrong. I just-"
"You don't eat enough to keep a bird alive," he told her.
Her smile widened. "Actually, birds eat about twice their body weight every day."
He shook his head. "Discovery channel?"
"Animal Planet. I never had much of a life," she replied with a shrug.
"Well, you need to eat more," he said.
"I can't," she said softly.
She shrugged again.
"I…when I was little, if I did something…bad…I was sent to my room, locked in for the night. Even if it was…during the day."
His heart fell. "Oh, god," he murmured. "How often?"
"Two, three times a week, I guess. I was a pretty bad kid, I suppose," she replied.
"Bullshit." He knew instinctively that she'd been a shy child, wondered if she been as full of sunshine as she was now. Suspected that she had been. "So, you didn't eat while you were in college, either, huh?"
"When I was at Western it was hard to find time to go to the cafeteria when it was open…I mean I worked twelve hours a week at the library, about thirty at Stuart Anderson's Steak House, I had to pay half for any meals I ate there, so I didn't eat there often, and then there were classes, and lab work to do, and homework…" she shrugged again.
"What was your major?" her mention of lab work making him curious.
She looked out the window, sighed softly. "Anthropology."
His heart skipped a beat. That was why her comments about their 'marriage' sounded so familiar! She was interested in the same things he was, had chosen a career path that would make her the perfect assistant! "You can still get that degree, Angel. Any time you want to."
She smiled. "Maybe someday."
"And now that you're working?"
He wasn't going to let this go, she thought worriedly. When he found out that she was…flawed, damaged, he certainly wasn't going to want her! "I only skip lunch when I need money for my half of the electric bill, or car insurance," she admitted.
"Oh, god, Casey!" The forlorn look in her eyes was a warning, he knew it. Something was wrong, something that she thought would make him walk away. He already knew her well enough to see…feel…that coming. "There's more, isn't there?"
She nodded, the misery in her eyes cutting him to the quick. "I…I had an ulcer, a bad one, last year. The doctor did all the usual tests, and he…um…he said that the MRI showed scars that were at least fifteen years old. He said I've had at least one ulcer all the time since I was about eleven. That's why whenever I get nervous or upset I throw up. I used to do that a lot. He said…he said there are scars on my esophagus from that as well. My stomach isn't…well …it's not the right size, not for a healthy adult, he said. He said that he didn't think it ever would be."
Daniel leaned back in the seat, closed his eyes. Willed himself to remain calm, for her. "I am so sorry, Angel," he said softly.
She fought back the tears. "I understand," she whispered.
He opened his eyes, saw the look of pain in those beautiful green eyes. She expected him to walk away. "Good. I'm glad. As soon as we get home, I want Janet Fraiser to take a look at you. She's a great doctor. Great person. I know you'll like her. Now, I'm guessing that the doctor prescribed something for you, didn't he?"
Her eyes went wide. "Home?"
"Yes. Home. Our home. If you think for one second that something like this is going to get rid of me, you have another think coming. You're stuck with me, Casey. I refuse to let you walk away from me! You are my Destiny! I am not letting you go!" His eyes were full of fire, and determination. Her smile nearly blinded him. He reached across the table and took her hand. "Did the doctor give you a prescription?"
She nodded, because she didn't dare try to speak yet. He loved her! He really did love her!
"Any refills left?" The look of love in her eyes had his heart pounding again.
"I guess. I only filled it once, I couldn’t afford it," she replied softly.
"Well, I guess a couple more days without them will be okay," he said, frowning slightly. "I don't suppose you know what it was?"
She opened her purse, began to dig inside it. Pulled out her wallet and sat it on the table. And a travel sewing kit. A bottle of water. A small notebook, that looked as if almost all of the pages had been written on. A newer notebook. An address book.
Daniel began to chuckle. "Any chance of finding a kitchen sink in that thing?"
"Ha ha. Kelley makes comments too, but I'm always the one people run to when they need something," she replied, putting a miniature tool kit and pocketknife on the table beside the small flashlight and can of Mace. "Here," she said, handing the prescription bottle to him, and scooping all of the items back into the bag.
"Ranitidine," he murmured. He grabbed his cell phone and dialed. Winked at her. "Hey, Walter. Do me a favor, get Doctor Fraiser on the line, will ya? Thanks."
"Hang on, Angel. I'm going to see if…Janet? Hi. Yeah, it's me. Look, Casey needs a prescription refilled, and I was wondering if you could do it?…Aw, come on, just this once? I promise, as soon as we get there I'll bring her in, you can take a look at her. In fact, I insist on it…yep…With all my heart…Ranitidine…long story, and I'll let her tell you when we get there…Thanks, Janet!…Okay, I just go to the base?…Great. Thanks…Yep, talk to you soon." He closed the phone, put it back in his pocket. "Okay, we have to run to McChord first. Janet said she'd fax the script there and insist that it be ready for pick up in an hour."
"You are amazing," she said softly, her eyes wide with awe, with love.
"Wait until you see me on a dig. That's amazing!" Her giggle made him smile. "Ready to go?"
"One more cup of coffee?"
"Ah, a woman after my own heart."
They had one last cup of coffee, then Daniel paid the bill. And left a tip, at Casey's insistence. Something that he made sure the waitress knew. Very few people knew how vindictive Daniel Jackson could be when someone he loved was hurt. No matter how slight that hurt might be.
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