"One thing I still don't get about this whole thing."
"And that is?" Jack lazily stroked Daniel's flank with one warm, lingering hand.
"This whole 'no consequences' thing. I really said that to you?" Daniel propped himself up on one elbow, looking genuinely aghast at the idea. Jack was stung.
"Yeee-aaah. Your point?"
"To you? I specifically used the phrase 'no consequences' in a conversation with you when you were stuck in a time loop which nobody else could remember?"
"Nobody but Teal'c and me," Jack corrected gently. "And of course you did. That's what gave me the idea."
A muttered, "Christ, what was I thinking?" did nothing for Jack's sense of self-worth. Not that, strictly speaking, it needed a lot of anything done to it: Daniel's gratifying enthusiasm some twenty minutes previously had buoyed it up quite nicely in the short term.
"Do I detect a slight overtone of perplexity? Just a smidgeon of 'what the fuck'?" Jack's tone was very slightly wounded.
Daniel had the grace to look shamefaced - for a fraction of a second. He shrugged and said, "Sorry. Just -- it's pretty much like asking Bonnie and Clyde to watch the bank for you while you run an errand..." His voice tailed off and he stared into space over Jack's shoulder.
"Daniel? I'm not getting a great sense of feeling complimented here. This isn't big on the warm fuzzies, I haveta tell ya."
Daniel pulled himself together with a theatrically (in Jack's opinion) obvious effort. "I'm sorry, Jack. But - I've known you now for what, five years?" Daniel shook his head. "I really said that to you? When I've known you for five years?" His brow furrowed and he skewered Jack with a sharp glance as he thought it all through again. "And naturally, you took it as a challenge."
Jack preened. "Naturally. And may I say, so did you, in the later loops - once we'd gotten that whole 'I'm in a time loop' thing down to a fine art. It was your idea to give Hammond the candy that turned his piss green. And to Saran Wrap the john that Carter uses. So you've no call to purse your lips like that."
"My idea? Really?"
"Yours," Jack confirmed.
"Are you sure? That just seems a little, you know," Daniel waved one vague hand in the air, "out there, for me."
"I'm certain. Your inner child was having a ball."
"Oh." The decision to shelve any juvenile sense of humour issues vis-à-vis Jack O'Neill and lack of consequences was really quite remarkably cut and dried when it came right down to it, Daniel realised. He changed tack abruptly. "This morning, when we were in the Commissary, you smirked. Yeah, just like that."
"Like what?" Jack's attempt to pull his smirk into an expression of injured innocence didn't quite come off.
"That," said Daniel severely. "It was a definite smirk." He paused for a moment then said with a twitch of his brows, "About?"
"Something else that happened during the loop. Something I haven't told you about yet."
"There's more?" Daniel scooted up the bed to lean against the headboard and began to tick points off on his fingers one by one. Jack settled back comfortably, hands laced behind his head. "So, you rode a bicycle through the corridors; you drove a golf shot through the wormhole - or would have, if General Hammond hadn't interrupted you --"
"Don't worry," Jack interjected, "he only put me off my third drive. I'd already shot a couple of sweet ones a gazillion light years, straight as a die."
Daniel's eyebrows rose but he made no comment, although Jack got the distinct impression that he hadn't been worrying about it, exactly.
"You made some pots, learned Latin --"
"Oh yeah," Jack sighed heavily. "And I have to tell ya, that grammarian, what's his name? Mousey? Maloney?"
"Yeah him. No sense of bringing the subject alive at all. That tome was dry as dust. Couldn't make it entertaining to save his life. 'His rebus perfectis Caesar transivit flumen'? What's with that?" Jack's voice vibrated with disgust.
"As an illustration of the ablative absolute it's pretty damn good."
"Pfft! I can think of better right off the top of my head - how about 'Amatore constricto per culcitam pedicavi'? Or, 'Amatore anhelite et mentula palpitante incepimus pedicare'? You see? Instantly memorable because they have relevance."
Daniel snorted with laughter. "Yep, pretty memorable. Pretty relevant too, especially the double whammy in the second one. I'm not sure they'd be entirely suitable for the Doctor's intended audience though." A sudden thought occurred to him and he added, "Tell me, does this mean that next time we fuck, we're going to do it in Latin?"
"Depends. Is that a particular kink of yours?"
"Dunno. I've never tried it before. I've never been to bed with anyone who was that fluent."
Jack's eyes sparked as his hand cupped Daniel's groin. "Fluent, eh? Mihi irruma et te pedicabo. And I'll take that little twitch thing you've got going on there as a yes."
"That's, uh, that's fluent, all right." Daniel cleared his throat as Jack grinned up at him. "But let's not change the subject. Let's see now... you kissed Sam."
"You did too. We were both wasted, don't forget. It was a hazing thing."
Daniel looked regretful. "But I have forgotten. I wish I hadn't, although I guess I'm glad Sam has. Was it any good?"
Jack reached up, smiling, and ruffled Daniel's hair. "Not so good as you. Winner and still champion."
Daniel smiled briefly in return before returning to his bullet point summary. "You ate a ton of Froot Loops."
"No, not exactly," Jack closed his eyes and shuddered. "I ate the same Froot Loops a ton of times. There's a difference."
After a brief moment of consideration, Daniel had to agree. "I hear what you're saying. Definite philosophical difference there." He looked down. "So, have I missed anything?"
"Nope. That's it, as far as you know."
"So, what's with the smirk?"
"You really wanna know?"
"Okay, okay. You blew me on the briefing room table." Jack counted Daniel's dropped jaw as a point for his side. "I returned the favor in the 'gate room."
Daniel swallowed hard. "Damn, I wish I could remember that!"
"Yeah," Jack said happily, "it was hot."
Both men shared a moment of silent contemplation before, "What about Teal'c?" Daniel almost yelped as the thought occurred to him.
Jack considered for a moment, chewing on his bottom lip. "No, you definitely didn't blow him. I'd've remembered that."
That earned him a snort and a roll of Daniel's eyes. "Asshole. You know what I mean. Where was Teal'c when this was going down? Sorry, no pun intended; but does he know about this?"
"Nope. He was away doing some Jaffa tension relief thing." At Daniel's enquiring look, he added, "I'm not sure, but I think it involved massage, lots of candles and that cute little nurse on the graveyard shift. He wasn't telling and I didn't ask. Anyway, that's what gave us the ideal window."
"Couldn't you at least have saved the security tape?"
Jack chuckled at the mixture of relief and wistfulness on Daniel's face and shook his head. "Oh, I tried, believe me, I tried. But the only thing that survived the reset thing was my memories. Tell ya what though - I ever get promoted to head honcho in this place? I could stand to do that one loop one more time. And we'd definitely save the tape."
Back to Catspaw's Home