Disclaimer: Nope, Got nothin

'Threads' of Whispered Confessions

by Linda Bindner

A/N: A brief synopsis so far: The 'Threads' Communication Series:

story one - Mark and Carter have a conversation on the phone

story two - Mark and Jack have a conversation on the phone

story three - a Jack and Sam e-mail conversation with very

unusual consequences

story four - Carter receives a concussion when she interrupts a

meeting between Jack, the VP (Kinsey), et all. She then

spends time in ICU while Jack anxiously waits for her to

wake up

story five - Carter learns secrets - from Mark and Daniel, and

from Jack - and on a side note, someone is trying to kill

her - but who?

story six - codes, letters, and more secrets

story seven - What every man dreams of, but rarely gets - a

cliché in the making

Now, on with the series...

Jack slowly grew aware of the facts that he was lying on top of his bed for some reason, totally naked, something was resting on top of him, and he was downright cold.

He turned his immediate and sleepfilled attention onto the one thing that was uppermost in his mind, trying hard to puzzle it out - Why was he so cold? Had he fallen asleep and left the window open again?

Jack tried to shake away the sleepiness that still clung to his mind as he at last was able to blink his eyes open and gaze around.

The first thing he noticed was that it was dark in his bedroom, and he couldn't really see anything besides shapes. The lamp that he had flicked on in the living room when he came home that evening wasn't enough to penetrate the darkness shrouding his bedroom in gloom.

But there didn't appear to be much of anything to see... he could just discern the outline of the window - a closed window - so no, he hadn't left his window open again - that wasn't the reason why he was so cold. He could just make out the rumpled blob that was the cover from his bed. He turned his head to try to ascertain more of his surroundings, and that was when he became better aware of the soft something that was still lying on top of him.

Blonde hair tickled his nose when he turned his head, and that woke him up more completely. With a whoosh that rivaled the Stargate in sound effects that went straight to his brain, he suddenly recalled the happenings of the last half hour of his life - or at least, he assumed that only a half hour had passed - he guessed that he should know better by now than to assume anything in his life one way or the other, but he couldn't help assuming anyway.

Jack carefully cradled the form of the... something (he wasn't completely certain yet that the last half hour wasn't just the product of a really nice dream.) Whatever it was - he thought it was Carter lying on top of him, but again, he wasn't 100% certain of that - it was now sleeping on top of him, not just lying there. He turned his head even further to stare at the digital alarm clock that he had resting on the nightstand beside his bed. The illuminated numbers registered that it was now 2031. Jack gave a jerk of his head - a tad bit more time than half an hour had elapsed while he slept!

Which was odd... Jack usually had trouble sleeping, and never bothered to lay down for naps. But he had just woken from an impromptu nap feeling more refreshed than he had in ages.

Jack turned back to again take in the form on top of him that was just now beginning to stir awake. He couldn't help it - her stirrings again reminded him of the evening's earlier events, and he couldn't quite repress the satisfied sigh that issued from deep inside him.

Slowly, as if she had been drugged, Samantha Carter blinked awake. There was just enough light to see her by. She turned what must have been a sore neck (sore because she'd once again fallen asleep with her head lying at a screwy angle) and gazed at him out of eyes that had gone dark in the ebony room. A second later, she smiled at him, that blow-through-his-guts smile, the one that always caught him by surprise, happening when he least expected it to occur. There was no doubt now - she too remembered everything that had happened earlier that evening, and best yet, she definitely seemed to be happy that it had happened in the first place. Jack half expected her to pull a 'thiswasamistakeitneverhappened' card out of her butt, as would have been very like the Carter of his past experiences. But now she just smiled down at him, as if she wasn't going to deny the evening's entertainment, and didn't want to deny that occurrence anyway.

Which suited Jack just fine - more than fine, actually! He felt great, and wanted to claim that feeling, and to share it. Hi there, beautiful girl, he whispered. Fancy seeing you here... on top of me... naked... and naked... Did I say that we're both naked? And did I say that I love that?

Sam grinned at his words. Carter's grin was infectious, and Jack grinned even more back at her. His arms tightened around her waist as his smile grew. It delighted him even more that she tightened her hold on him as well.

Jack's whisper again broke the silence that had fallen over the room. Not that I really don't appreciate what happened here earlier... and would like to repeat those events... endlessly... He stared at her with a quizzical puckering of his forehead. But I'm wondering... What prompted this... really... nice distraction?

Carter grinned at him as she met his gaze (at any rate, he thought she met his gaze - it was too dark in the room to tell for sure just where she was looking). She softly kissed his chin and snuggled even closer to him as she replied, her voice also as low as his, I'm glad that you liked it so well.

Liked it? Jack mock-whispered back to her. I hope to do that again... and again... and again... And that's just tonight. But, I repeat, what brought you to my... well, I know what brought you to my door - but - what brought you to my bed? Not that I mind that you're here, of course, he hastened to add.

Sam blew a breathe of air out of pursed lips as she considered his question. I guess, she hesitantly told him in a quiet voice, I guess... I was... tired.

Jack snorted at her reply. Tired? he echoed in soft incredulity. At her nod, he asked, Tired of what?

Again came the puff of air as she thought about her answer. I guess... she pensively said. I was tired... of...

She sounded as if she didn't even know. Jack had suspected that the Sam Carter that he knew and loved would have thought this whole seduction scenario through to death before she even showed up in his room. But now she seemed as if she needed more prompting. Yes?

Again came Sam's brilliant, happy smile blazing out of her face. In a much firmer, though still quiet, voice, she said, I wanted 'it' out. I didn't know if you did or not, but I figured that I have nothing to lose at this point. How did I do?

Jack snorted again, this time in appreciation. You did amazingly well, he told her. You can want 'it' out all the time as far as I'm concerned.

Once more came her breathtaking smile. I admit that I hoped that you would say that. She planted her elbows on the bed beside him and rose up so that she could see his face as she continued, Consider 'it' out of the room, out of the closet, out in the open... just plain out.

But Jack had that pucker between his brows again, the one that he knew showed his confusion. What if I hadn't agreed with you, though? What if I had thought that there was no 'it' anymore to come out... of anywhere.

A grimace replaced the smile on Carter's face. I wouldn't have blamed you for thinking that. She sighed a sad sound that echoed in the quiet room. I told myself that if that were to happen, then I would officially be the most stupid person in the whole world, and that I would never bother you again. She gave a halfhearted shrug and in strangely nonchalant words, given their topic of discussion, told him, My heart would have been broken, but... The shrug downplayed the importance of the possible outcome of the earlier scene in the bedroom. I would have left quietly, if you wanted me to go.

Jack gazed at her, still in question. Why didn't you ever say something before, if this is how you feel?

Why didn't you? she quietly countered.

Jack didn't immediately know what to say to her challenge, and when he didn't know what to say, he always made a joke, or said something insignificant, instead of staying quiet, or saying something profound. Because I'm a bigger fool than you are, he instantly said.

Another Sam-smile filtered down to him on the bed. Do you want to be fools together? she asked in a lilting voice.

Jack couldn't stop the grin that met her smile. Oh yeah, he said, agreeing with her wholeheartedly. He leaned up for a lingering kiss that abruptly turned into something more, that ended that annoying feeling of coldness that had descended on him.

They made love once more. They ate a dinner of (you guessed it) takeout. They pretended to watch a movie while making love on Jack's living room couch. Then at 2300 hours, they retired to bed again, where they did not make love, but snuggled together (under the blankets this time) and quickly fell asleep.

When they woke the next morning, it was to the bittersweet knowledge that Carter's eye doctor appointment was later that morning, and that she would be leaving the very next day. That only gave them a day to be together, give or take a few hours, and after eight years of ignoring the 'time' issue, it suddenly seemed to both of them that 'time' was definitely of the essence.

Good morning, gorgeous, Sam whispered into Jack's ear as she gave an inviting stretch against his warm side.

Jack wasn't oblivious to what she might possibly be trying to communicate with that stretch of hers, but all he did was to quietly reply, Good morning yourself. He kissed her on the cheek and nuzzled her neck. I think I should protest the idea that the word 'gorgeous' should only be attributed to me, though.

Sam smiled, her eyes still puffy with sleep. What - you've acquired a pet that you also wish to be considered 'gorgeous?'

Jack snorted in sarcasm. If I do, he playfully said, and ran his fingers gently down her cheek as he spoke, I want a dog, and I want to name it 'Daniel.'

It was Sam's turn to give a snort at what he said. Jack grinned even more, then explained himself as his caresses of her face continued. No, I mean it, was his further protest. Think about it - if it weren't for Daniel...

... and Mark, she said with a swift kiss to each of his fingers.

Jack conceded, And Mark... We wouldn't be here... naked... in my bed... He shrugged his disarming shrug when she mockingly narrowed her eyes at him in inquiry. That's a 'gorgeous' thing in my book, he continued.

The momentary narrowness of her eyes cleared away as she grinned again at him. Okay, she agreed. We'll name the dog 'Daniel,' but can you promise never to tell him? Then she gave a groan. The dubious honor of naming a pet after him might go straight to his head.

Jack's quiet whisper continued, even as his expression of inquiry returned. You sound as if there's a part of this 'getting together' equation that I'm missing: 'We'll' name the dog 'Daniel?'

Oh, yeah, that's right, Sam softly said, clearly just now remembering something that was very important, something to explain his 'we' question. I can't believe that I forgot this part, she said as a muttered aside. She then turned onto her side, replaced her glasses on her face ("I don't want to not wear them, and end up getting sick in your bed"), and promptly pulled open the drawer of his nightstand as if she knew precisely what she would find there.

But Jack wasn't quite ready to tell her of the drawer's contents. Don't! he breathed in warning.

The drawer, however, was already gaping open, and Sam held the single item in the drawer in her hand. 'Don't?' she whispered back to him. Jack, you sound as if you don't want me to see this, she continued in a chiding voice. Isn't it yours? And isn't it for me? She held up a small, deep blue velvet jewelry box for his inspection.

After another anxious moment where she held aloft the tiny box in shaking fingers, and he gazed at it, his heart in his throat, he gave in to her seemingly impetuous action, and his fear disappeared to be replaced with a wry expression. He whispered to her, How did you find that so quickly?

Sam's expression was far more guilty than Jack's. I... um... might have already known about this... for years, she confessed with a grimace.

This statement confused Jack, who wasn't expecting to hear such a thing. You knew about it - for years? he asked in a voice of soft incredulity.

Sam nodded in confirmation. I found it one team night at your house when I was looking for paper for a game of Spades that we were playing. Now she shook her head, the morning light glinting off the lenses in her glasses. I didn't mean to snoop, honest, and I didn't look inside the box. She held up two fingers, then placed them over her heart. Please believe me, Jack, I didn't look, I swear.

Jack eyed her as if he were thinking about what she had said, but didn't say that he didn't believe her, and didn't say that he did. He remained quiet, his eyebrows cocked in question, and just stared at her.

Carter took this silence as an invitation to go on. At first, I played at being dense, and I thought it was some kind of jewelry for Cassie. She sighed then. But over the years, I kept checking for it, and kept finding it. And you never gave it to Cassie. Then she shrugged once more. But you never gave it to me, either, she said. I didn't know what to think. Then she added, And I still don't know for sure what it is, but I've always had my suspicions.

Slowly Jack took the small jeweler's box out of Carter's fingers and regarded it without opening it. I was going to give this to you when the time was right, he quietly told her after a moment of reflection went by. His following sigh of distress echoed in the room. It just never seemed like the right time, he told her.

Sam's own look of distress adorned her features. I figured that was the problem - though you never said as much, she went on. Her own sigh spilled through the room. And then, I got tired of waiting for you to give this to me, and... Her distress deepened. I got another one from someone else who would give one to me, she continued, refusing now to meet his eyes, as if she were ashamed of the reality that she had forced him and her to recently live through.

Jack winced, knowing that she was referring to Pete and his lifetime offering, but she hadn't exactly said it, and he didn't exactly say the words now, either. What's in the past is in the past, he firmly said. What's done is done.

Carter's brow puckered in the same way that his had earlier. Do you think so? she asked, sounding as if she fervently hoped that he meant what he said, but knew better than to hope so much at the same time. I admit that I've always wanted you to think that I hadn't screwed up so much that I...

Jack interrupted her to place a calming finger on her lips in a signal for quiet. Shh, he encouraged. We both 'screwed up,' he quoted. I didn't say anything to stop you from taking that ring of his, after all, he pointed out. I just have been worried that I waited too long to give this to you, that when I finally got up the nerve to say something, you wouldn't want it anymore.

Sam's eyes now glinted in the sunlight streaming through the window. I'm not tired of waiting now - I just needed a break from the waiting, she insisted. She smiled at him, another gut-wrenching grin. I'm still waiting, she hinted. I'd really like to see if that box holds what I think it holds. And... maybe... it's the right time... to do that... right now, she tentatively suggested.

Jack didn't say anything to that, only looked at her with thoughtful brown eyes as she lay beside him in his bed.

Suddenly, with the quickness of a summer storm, he came to a decision. He didn't say what that decision was, but he did clear his throat, as if in preparation for saying something else, something important.

Sam waited for him to speak. But he didn't say anything. He simply rested the palm of his hand against one of her cheeks in a gentle hold that said 'I love you' without him actually having to say anything. He leaned forward and kissed her in a wonderful show of affection that left Carter humming. I like this already, she whispered into his ear as they parted from the kiss.

Jack smiled a little more at her words.

Then, without a word spoken as a way of explanation, or a query, or a comment, Jack flipped the box open.

The box held a ring, a circle of flat sapphire stones that now winked in the sunlight slanting across the bed.

Carter breathed out a breath that she wasn't aware that she'd been holding. She cocked her head, smiling as well. Yep. It's definitely what I had always thought it was. She expectantly stared at him when he still didn't say anything. I'm still waiting.

Jack's lips curved in a smile to finish off the half grin of Carter's. He still didn't say anything, but did pull the ring out of the box, and slowly slip it onto the fourth finger of her left hand. He gave her shoulder an affectionate rub on his hand's way back to the covers on his bed.

Sam studied the ring, breathless again as she watched the blue stones winking in the not-so-early morning light. The ring of stones completely encased her finger, and it didn't matter which side was pointing up - there was no up, no down, no right, no wrong. It's a flat band, too, she noted.

Jack said the first thing that he'd said since opening the box. It's a flat band so it won't get caught on your doohickeys. He grinned a soft grin.

Carter smiled in appreciation, too. You know me well, she said, still studying the piece of jewelry.

It gets better, Jack told her, his voice still low. This is an eternity ring, a band that basically means 'yours till infinity.' Then his face reddened in a blush. It's sappy, I know, but I also know that 'infinity' is your favorite symbol, so I knew that you'd like it. Sam grinned again. But Jack went on, Infinity - Always - Forever, he insisted, adding a kiss to the ring as he spoke. Then he gazed straight at her and softly said, It's true, no matter if you keep this ring or not, even if I never see you again - I'll always be there when you need me.

Crap! He was making her cry!

Sam sniffed once, and couldn't help the laugh that bubbled out of her in spite of the tears. I hope that we'll both be around together... for as long as this ring lasts.

Jack smiled at her comment. That's a going to be a long time, he remarked. The ring is made out of titanium - long life guarantee.

Sam sniffed again, nodded, and grinned. Long life is right - or at least, I hope it is, she said. And then she hugged him so wildly, he worried that they might tumble off the bed together.

He thought about saying that he understood her action to be a positive response to his unasked question, but by then she was too busy kissing him for Jack to say anything.

And that was all that was said about Carter's sudden and unexpected appearance in his bed... naked. In fact, as Jack and Sam disappeared beneath the blankets of that bed, enjoying the idea of the ring that now adorned her finger, he decided that he wouldn't mind if they both stayed wonderfully naked for the rest of his life.

His contented sigh again split through the room. Life was definitely getting... very... good!

The End - sequel Invasion 'Threads'

Back to [Stargate SG-1 Stories]. Send comments to linda.bindner@gmail.com.

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