Collision in the Sky

Author:  Orrymain
Category:  Slash, Action/Adventure, Drama, Romance, Established Relationship
Pairing:  Jack/Daniel ... and it's all J/D
Rating:  PG-13
Season:  Beyond the Season - April 29, 2015
Spoilers:  None
Size:  33kb, short story
Written:  August 15,17,19-21 2009 Revised for Consistency: January 19, 2015
Summary:  Daniel and two of the children face unexpected danger on a business trip to Louisiana.
Disclaimer:  Usual disclaimers -- not mine, wish they were, especially Daniel, and Jack, too, but they aren't.  A gal can dream though!
Notes:  
1) Silent, unspoken thoughts by various characters are indicated with ~ in front and behind them, such as ~Where am I?~
2) Thanks to my betas who always make my fics better:  Navi, Becca, Ali, Irina!

Collision in the Sky
by Orrymain

“Daddy, are we going to get to dig for artifacts?” eight-year-old Jonny asked from his spot in the co-pilot's seat.  Dressed in blue jeans, a red T-shirt, and comfortable sneakers, he was ready for this special day with his father.  ~I hope we can.~

“I'm not sure, Jonny,” Daniel answered.  “This is just a quick check in.  Bibi was having some problems with the local representative about what we're doing.  It's, uh, made operations a bit ... rough.”

“And you're going to un-rough it, aren't you, Daddy?” Jonny assumed.

~Un-rough it?~ the archaeologist mused silently.  “I hope so.”

“You will,” Jenny sounded off from the backseat.  She was settled in wearing black tights, a long white and blue striped shirt, and black ballerina shoes.  “Daddy, can we set up a grid?  I want to practice measuring.”

“Well, we can pretend to set up a grid and you can measure.  How does that sound?” Daniel asked.

“Okay,” the seven-year-old redhead agreed, happy to have the chance to section off an area, even if it wouldn't be used as part of the actual dig.

Daniel and the two children were heading to a remote Louisiana location in Jo, the family's Meyers 200A aircraft.  The plan was to take care of business and then to spend some quality time together.

Jonny and Jenny had been selected for the one-day outing via a vote from the brood.  Previously, Jack and Daniel used a secret selection process, a box full of their kids' pictures on key chains to randomly draw names.  However, the process wasn't as impartial as they allowed themselves to think and after the kids discovered the box's existence, it was agreed that the children would have a larger voice in deciding who went on these special trips.

====

With Jo parked at the closest airport, Daniel and the children were now driving towards the dig site in one of J-O Enterprises' jeeps.  They'd been met at the airport by Bibreanay Appleton, one of J-O's original employees.  Bibreanay was trusted and respected.  While she was the company's bone expert, on this project she was doing much more in her role as a lead archaeologist.

“Daniel, he just won't listen to me,” Bibreanay complained as she drove.  “I've shown him all the papers and releases, and he acts like he's not hearing me.”

“Any idea why?”

“No, none,” Bibreanay answered with a shake of her head.  Glancing in the rear view mirror, she saw the children watching the scenery roll by.  “Kids, you okay back there?”

“We're fine, Bibi,” Jenny answered.

“It's going to get bumpier in the next few minutes, so hold on tight,” the woman warned.

“We can handle it,” Jonny returned, making a point to keep an extra eye on Jenny as a precaution.  ~She acts tough, but she's not always tough.~

“Did he read the permissions?” Daniel inquired.

“He looks at them and then he tells me I'm violating some code, but he won't show me anything in writing or even give me the details,” the lady archaeologist responded.  “I've talked with Miles, and he's assured me that we're not breaking any regulations, and Dora's double-checked the filings.  Daniel, we're not violating anything.  Everything is okay.”

“He must have an agenda,” Daniel surmised.  He'd already checked with J-O's legal department and with their procedures and protocols personnel himself.  As Bibreanay stated, everything had been checked and double-checked.  “Did he present his credentials?”

“Yes, and I made a photocopy and faxed it to Miles.  He says it's legit.”

“Well, something is bothering him about us being here,” Daniel sighed.

“He's hanging around all the time, Daniel.  It's almost like he's waiting for us to do something wrong so he can write us up.”

“We don't cheat,” Jonny interjected loudly, his voice raised in order to be heard.

“You're right, Jonny.  We go above and beyond in our procedures,” Bibreanay returned.  “He's got a bee under his bonnet for some reason, though.”

“Honey,” Jenny shouted.

“Honey?” Daniel questioned, glancing back.

“If he's got bees, Daddy, maybe he just wants some honey,” Jenny suggested.

“Honey,” the archaeologist muttered, his eyelids blinking a few times as he thought things out.

For the rest of the way, Daniel was quiet as he attempted to work out the puzzle in his mind.

====

“It's just up ahead,” Bibreanay pointed out when the site was a mile or so ahead of the travelers.

“Pull over.”

“What?”

“Bibi, please pull over,” Daniel ordered.  “Give me a minute,” he requested, getting out of jeep and pacing back and forth just a few feet away.

“What is he doing?” Bibreanay asked from her driver's spot in the jeep.

“He's solving the problem,” Jonny answered proudly.  “When Daddy paces, his mind is working.”  He chuckled, “Working harder, like on full speed.”

“It's the honey,” Jenny added with a smile, earning her a stare from her brother.

Bibreanay and the children watched until Daniel stopped his pacing and drew out his cell phone.  It was a long call, lasting almost twenty minutes.  When he was done, he walked towards the jeep, prompting Jenny to climb back to her seat.  For the last several minutes, she'd been a victim of the Bone Monster, one of Bibreanay's creations from years back.  She'd created the Bone Monster to entertain the children whenever she was essentially babysitting them at the original 'hoffice'.  Hoffice was the term Jack had coined for the house that Daniel bought which was later converted to be J-O's office.

With Jenny still giggling and re-secured in her seat, Daniel slid smoothly into his seat.

“Daniel?” the lady archaeologist questioned as she re-adjusted her hat that had become loose from her transformation to the Bone Monster.

“Let's go,” the company owner instructed with a confident smile.

“This is gonna be fun,” Jonny opined, knowing what the stern and determined look on his Daddy's face meant.

“Yeah,” Jenny giggled.

Bibreanay wasn't sure what to make of that, glancing between the children and Daniel.

~Kids see humor in the craziest things,~ the woman told herself.

====

“Daniel, this is Mister Reid Skinner,” Bibreanay introduced.  “Mister Skinner, Doctor Daniel Jackson-O'Neill, the co-owner of J-O Enterprises.”

The man in front of Daniel and Bibreanay was five-feet, eight-inches tall and was wearing black slacks and a loose white button-down shirt.  His hazel eyes kept shifting, assessing the new situation.

Daniel extended out his hand, but it wasn't taken in the customary handshake among associates.  Instead, Skinner's hands remained in his pockets.

~Okay, let's get down to business then,~ Daniel thought confidently.

“Your company is violating code, O'Neill,” the liaison accused.

“Jackson-O'Neill,” Jonny and Jenny sing-songed in reprimand.

The children smiled and high-fived each other when their father didn't rebuke their correction.  That meant one thing -- Reid Skinner was on the 'bad' list.

“Daddy's gonna nail him,” Jonny whispered to Jenny.

“He's gonna sting the bee,” Jenny agreed.

“Skinner, we're not violating any regulations or codes,” Daniel refuted.  “My company never breaks the rules or the laws at any location.  My associate, Ms. Appleton, has shown you our documents, and I've *personally* verified that everything we're doing isn't violating any code of this region.”

Skinner wasn't deterred.  He proceeded to give the archaeologist a list of what were essentially bogus complaints.  He concluded his list by saying he realized that his interference was slowing the progress of J-O's work and thereby costing the archaeological firm money.  With a smile, he then made Daniel the offer that Daniel had been expecting.

“Mister Skinner, if I were you, I'd start looking for a new line of work.”

“I was just trying to make it easy on you.”

With a smug smile, Daniel pulled out his cell phone and without doing anything else spoke into it, asking, “Did you get all that?”  He smiled and acknowledged, “Thank you.  I'd appreciate that.”  He saw Skinner's confused expression and then he heard Skinner's phone go off.  “Uh, that's for you.”

Daniel walked away, smiling at his children as he moved closer to them.

“You bugged him!” Jonny surmised.

“Well, I cell-phoned him,” Daniel admitted.

“Way to go, Daddy!” Jenny exclaimed, jumping up and down excitedly.

A minute later, Skinner kicked a trash can near where he was standing and then glared over at Daniel.

When the man made a step towards him, Daniel immediately walked in front of his kids, his strong touch on their shoulders ordering them to stay where they were.  He continued forward until he was standing within inches of the man's personal space.

“Stop!” Daniel called out.  When he reached the man, he stated as strongly as possible, “I realize it's a cliché, but you've been caught with your hand in the till, Mister Skinner.  My hunch is that when the state contacts other companies, they'll find that you've been taking in the honey.”

“Honey?”

“Never mind,” Daniel replied.  “Get out of here and don't come back.”

Foiled at his extortion attempt, Skinner glanced over at the children, only his view was brief when Daniel moved over to block the view.

“Listen to me,” the archaeologist stated calmly.  “Right now, all you have going against you is bribery.  That's bad enough.  Don't even look at my children, or I promise you, bribery will be the least of your problems.”

As he stood with his hands on his hips, Daniel's stare was so intense that Skinner stepped back.  His brief thought about threatening the children dissipated almost as fast as it had formed.  In fact, the archaeologist's stare was so intense that Skinner was beginning to feel as if his life was in jeopardy.  He couldn't turn and run fast enough.

“Good choice!” Daniel called out.  Then he let out a whiff of air and shook his head.  ~Gawd.  Sometimes I scare myself when I pretend to be Jack.~  He cocked his head for a second and added, ~As long as the Skinners of the world are scared, too, I can handle it.~

“Rah, Rah, Daddy!” Jenny cheered as she and Jonny ran over to their father.

“That's the way to tell him, Daddy!” Jonny praised.

“Who was on the phone?” Bibreanay asked.

“The commissioner,” Daniel answered.  “As it turns out, they've had complaints about Skinner, but they've never been able to prove it.  This was risky, but they recorded it.  If nothing else, it'll get him fired.”

“Back to work,” Bibreanay said with a pleased smile.  “Are you staying?”

“Just for a little while,” Daniel answered, his hands on his children's shoulders. “Uh, did you need something?”

“Well, Skinner put us behind schedule.  Della had a hunch about an area we haven't touched yet.”

“Daddy!” Jenny exclaimed anxiously, sensing what was coming.

“We'll handle it,” Daniel stated.  “Just point us in the right direction.”

====

“That was fun,” Jenny opined that afternoon as she took her seat in Jo.

“Little Danny's gonna be jealous,” Jonny laughed as his father made sure he was secure in his seat before checking on Jenny.

“Dad called a while ago,” Daniel began, trying not to smile.  “Little Danny hit the winning home run in the ball game today.”

“He did?” Jonny responded, his smugness at doing something his brother treasured doing so much ebbing and now turning onto himself envying his brother.

“It was a grand slam,” Daniel added, smiling as he backed away.  ~Sorry, Jonny.~

Jonny sighed, frustrated over the envy game having changed.  By the time Daniel had Jo started, though, Jonny was bursting out in a smile.

“Daddy, did Little Danny really hit a grand slam?”

“He sure did.”

“Yes!” Jonny exclaimed, pumping his fists in support and glee from his fellow Munchkin's success.

“Did Dad record it?” Jenny asked.  “I want to see it when we get home.”

“He was getting ready to put it on the computer when he called.  He said your brother was grinning bigger than ever.”  After a pause, Daniel added, “While Dad was on the phone, Little Danny walked in, and Dad told him about you making and working the grid.  Just so you know, he was thrilled and wants to know all the details.”

Jonny sighed, having been caught once again trying to have some fun, only to be deflated in the process.

Daniel rolled Jo into position and checked with the tower for takeoff instructions.  He had one small Cessna in front of him.

As the plane idled, Daniel looked over at Jonny and questioned, “Jonny, tell me the truth.  Would you have rather been at the game today instead of Little Danny?”

Jonny grinned and shook his head, answering, “I can play baseball any day, Daddy, but I don't get to play in the dirt with you that much.  This was way more fun.”

“Play in the dirt?” Daniel echoed, amused by the Jack-like expression.

“I had a great time, Daddy,” Jonny added, the seriousness and honesty in his eyes genuine.

“I did, too.”

“Me, too, not that you asked,” Jenny chuckled.

Daniel laughed, as did Jonny, and then it was time to hit the sky and head home.

====

Daniel, Jonny, and Jenny were singing songs as they grew closer to Colorado in their Meyers aircraft.

All of a sudden, Jenny pointed and called out, “Daddy, the birds!”

An unusual flock of birds filled the sky, and they were flying straight for the blue airplane.  Quickly, Daniel made a flight correction, turning the plane to its left.  It was a sharp turn, and worse, it took the plane into a high level of turbulence.  Unprepared for the wild ride Jo was now taking, Daniel was tossed to his side and hit his head, falling into unconsciousness.

“Daddy!” Jenny cried out.

With Jo bumping up and down, Jonny reached over to shake his father, but got nothing but a groan in response.  For several seconds, the kids tried to rouse Daniel, but he was out for the count.

“We have to move Daddy,” Jonny instructed.

“Why?”

“Because I don't know how to fly from the co-pilot's seat,” Jonny answered.

“Me, neither,” Jenny responded.

The Meyers 200A wasn't a large craft by any means and moving their daddy was not going to be easy.  Silently, they hoped that Daniel might wake up in the process, but he didn't.  Running on the strength and energy which their adrenaline provided, Jonny and Jenny managed to get Daniel spread out in the back of the plane.

“Jonny, he's bleeding,” Jenny told her brother.  “I don't know how to stop it.”

“I do,” Jonny stated, reaching for the first aid kit.  “Jenny, fly the plane.  We have to get out of the turbulence.”

“Okay,” Jenny acknowledged, settling into the pilot's seat and gently putting her hands on the wheel.  ~Okay, I've seen Dad and Daddy do this lots.~  Replaying the visuals in her mind, the determined redhead gently steered Jo higher into the sky until the bumpy ride ebbed.  “Jonny, I think some of those birds hit us.  Jo feels funny.”

“Just a sec, Jenny,” Jonny responded, placing a bandage over the cut that was on the side of his father's forehead.  “Jenny, can you reach the pedals?”

“Na-huh.  I'll bet you can, though, Jonny.  You're taller than me.”

“Daddy, please wake up!” Jonny implored, shaking Daniel one more time.  “Oh, crap!”

“Jonny!”

“Move over, Jenny,” Jonny ordered, getting into the pilot's seat as quickly as he could.  He was a bit taller than average for his age, and that turned out to be a blessing.  He could just tap the pedals, but that wasn't enough.  Just to do that much, he had to lean way down.  He wouldn't be able to hold the wheel correctly or see properly outside the plane.  He just wasn't tall enough yet.  “You'll have to help me, Jenny.”

“I can do it,” Jenny assured.

“Get on the radio.  I need to concentrate,” Jonny instructed.

Jenny reached for the radio and called out, “Hello?  Tower?  Any tower, come in please.  This is Jo.”  She paused and asked, “Jonny, what's our call sign?  I don't remember.”

Jonny was nervous, and he knew Jenny was, too.  Otherwise, she'd remember the plane's numbering.  He relayed the information to his sister, who sighed, knowing she shouldn't have needed to ask the question.

“Calm down, Jenny,” the redhead ordered herself before giving the information over the radio.  “Did you get that, Tower?  Tower, we need help!”

“Meyers 200A aircraft, this is Denver.  What's your status?”

“My name is Jenny Jackson-O'Neill.  I'm seven, and my brother, Jonny, is eight. He's flying the plane.  We got attacked by birds, and Daddy's hurt.  Can you get our dad?”

Confused, the air traffic controller questioned, “You said your dad was injured.”

“No, Denver, that's our daddy.  Our dad is General Jack Jackson-O'Neill.  He worked at Cheyenne Mountain.  We know the President.  Please get my dad so he can save us.”

“We'll save ourselves, Jenny,” Jonny assured, although he was secretly happy at his sister's request.  ~Dad can tell me what to do.~

“Okay, kids.  What's the condition of your plane?”

“Sluggish,” Jenny answered.  “Daddy tried to avoid the birds, but I think some of them hit us.”

“Jenny, is your engine sputtering?”

“No, Jo's doing good,” Jenny answered.

“Jenny, who is Jo?”

“That's our plane.  We call her Jo,” Jenny explained to the satisfaction of the controller.

“Is your brother on mic?” the controller asked.

“He can hear you,” Jenny answered.

“Jonny, this is Denver,” the controller began.

~I know that,~ the sandy-haired boy sighed sarcastically, rolling his eyes.

“I need to know some of the instrument readings,” the man over the radio advised.  “Now there's a small ...”

“What readings do you want to know?” Jonny shouted out.  “We know the controls.  We're not dumb.”

There was a small pause and then the air traffic controller returned, “Of course, you're not.  I need your flight speed first.”

For the next couple of minutes, Jonny and Jenny both read off the readings, surprising the controller with their knowledge, which he hoped was accurate.

“Okay, kids, there's nothing to worry about.  I'm going to talk you through everything and get you down safely at Denver.  I need you to ...”

“No!” Jonny rebuffed loudly.  “We wanna land at COS,” he quickly advised, feeling more confident about flying into the Colorado Springs airport.  “We know it.  That's where we always go.”

“We live there.  Did you call our Dad yet?”

“Hold one,” the controller responded.

“They'd better call Dad now, or he and Daddy are gonna kick their butts,” Jenny told her brother.

“Yeah!” Jonny agreed.  “We told them we know the President.”

“I don't think they believe us,” Jenny responded, looking back at Daniel.  “Daddy?  Daddy, can you hear me?” she called out loudly and then sighed when there was no response.

“Jonny, we'd prefer you land at Denver.  We have you on radar, and it's the closest.  We want to get you on the ground as soon as possible.”

Jonny looked at Jenny, who shook her head 'no'.  He agreed with her.  He was confident they'd get down okay, but he didn't want to land in Denver.  The majority of their family trips were from the Colorado Springs Airport.  He knew it well.

“Negative, Denver.  We're going to COS,” Jonny advised stubbornly.  “And did you get Dad yet?”

“We're working it on it, Jonny,” the flight controller responded.  Off-mic, he looked at a co-worker and stated, “These kids sound like they're generals themselves.”

“You think they really know the President?” the co-worker asked.  “That's a weird thing to say during an emergency.”

“I don't know,” the flight controller replied.  He sighed, “I don't like the idea of them going all the way to COS.”

“Mike, the Air Force is taking over,” the control tower supervisor advised as he approached.

“Air Force?”

“I don't know who these kids are, but whoever they are, they're connected.  Cheyenne Mountain is handling it directly with COS.”

The flight controller and his co-worker shared a look of 'Wow' and then returned to their duties.

====

“Patch me in,” Jack ordered from his spot inside the Air Force helicopter.  Once he got the nod, he called out, “Jonny, Jenny, this is Dad.  Come in, please.”

“Dad!” Jenny called out.  “Birds hit Jo, and Daddy turned away, but then we got into turbulence, and Daddy hit his head.  He won't wake up,” she cried, having lost all of her composure at the sound of her father's voice.

“Red, it's okay.  Daddy probably just has another one of his famous concussions.  Those are a dime a dozen,” Jack attempted to reassure, praying that he was right and there was nothing severely wrong with his soulmate.  “Who's flying Jo?”

“Jonny is most of the time.  I did at first, but I can't reach the pedals,” Jenny answered.

“Jonny, how's it going?”

“Piece of cake, Dad, except Daddy's hurt, and I think Jo is, too.  Dad, we don't want to land in Denver.  We want to go home.  We know COS.”

“That's where you're going.  Give me the readings,” Jack instructed calmly, though his heart was pounding and his pulse racing from his inner fears.  After his son gave him the desired information quickly and calmly, Jack praised, “Good job.  Jonny, I need you to make a slight turn to your right.”

For the next several minutes, Jack's helicopter remained in flight as he verbally guided the Meyers 200A craft towards its home airport.  Airspace had been cleared and COS was prepping for an emergency landing.

“General!” the helicopter pilot called out, nodding in the distance.

“That's her!” Jack affirmed.  “Jonny, Jenny, two o'clock.”  He waited a few seconds.  “See me?  I'm the one with the whirlybird hat.”

“Dad!  We see you, Dad!” Jenny called out, now reassured and ready to do whatever her dad asked of her.

“I'm going to lead you in.  You have to do everything I say, just how I say it.  Jonny, let Jenny control the brakes.”

====

The children were five minutes out from COS when Jonny looked over at Jenny and proclaimed confidently, “Jenny, I know you're strong.  We can do this.”

“A piece of cake,” Jenny acknowledged, using one of her older father's favorite catchphrases to make the ordeal manageable.

“Kids, you've watched Daddy and me land Jo a hundred times.  This time, you're in control.  Focus.  Jonny, you're the man.  Bring Jo home.  Jenny, he can't do it without you.  Watch those pretty red hairs and hold those brakes down when I tell you to do so.  It's time for your approach.  Are you ready?”

“Ready, Dad!” Jonny and Jenny both responded.

“I love you and I'll see you on the ground,” Jack said as the helicopter pilot hung back, staying clear of the Meyers flight path.  “Here we go,” he advised from his prime vantage point.

Jack was holding his breath, but he had confidence in his children.  He was grateful for all the times that he'd broken the rules and let his children fly the plane.  He was thankful for all the questions he'd answered and sometimes repeatedly, from the moment the children could talk.  All of the kids knew Jo. They'd had both mechanical and flight lessons as well.

~Come on, Son.~

As Jo descended, Jack thought his heart was going to jump out of his chest.  His husband was on the plane, and his children were piloting the vintage craft. Still, from his calm, steady voice, no one would ever know there was the least bit of anxiety stirring within the general.

“You're right on, Jonny,” Jack observed.  “It's okay if she bounces a couple of times.  That's normal for beginners.  It happens all the time.”

The tension was thick in the air.  Fire engines were ready to roll and two ambulances were right beside them.  More comforting for Jack, Janet had responded to his call and was right there with the medical crew.

~Thanks, Doc.~

“Nose down!” Jack called out.  When the craft touched the ground, “Jenny, brakes!  *Hard!  Hard!  Hard!  Steady, Jonny!  Brake*!”  Jack's eyes were intent as he watched the plane speeding down the runway.  ~That's it!~  “Jonny, it's okay if she veers right.  You've got lots of room, just hold that wheel.  Good job, Jenny.  A little more.  Give it all you got, Red!  *Brake*!”

Finally, it was over.

“Get this thing on the ground,” the general ordered, exiting the helicopter as soon as he could.  He ran faster than he'd run in a long time.  He did well, but the emergency crews were there long before him.  “Jonny?  Jenny?”

“Dad!”

The kids broke away from the medical crew trying to tend to them and ran to their silver-haired father.

“You did it,” Jack declared emotionally.  He held the children close, soaking them in and grateful for their lives.  “Are you okay?”

“We're okay, Dad.  Daddy woke up.”

“He did?” Jack asked, taking that as a good sign.

Jack and the children returned to the center of the action.

“Daniel, you've got a ...” the petite physician began.

“Don't say it, Janet,” Daniel sighed, refusing to lie down.

“... a concussion,” Janet completed.

“Thank you,” Daniel replied a bit snarkily.  ~That word should be expunged from the English language.~

“Danny?”

“Hey, Jack,” the archaeologist greeted with a lilt in his voice.  “Jo needs an engine overhaul.”

“I got that idea,” Jack responded, smiling at his lover.

“Uh, Jonny and Jenny need licenses.  For all intents and purposes, they just soloed,” Daniel noted, taking the children into his arms when they ran to his side.

“Doc?”

“You know the routine, General,” Janet responded.  “We need to clear things here and then it's ...”

“Can't I just go home?” Daniel begged.  “I hate concussions.”

“If I had a dollar for every one of your concussions, Daniel, I'd be able to fly to Paris,” Janet teased.  “First class.”

“I’m not that bad,” Daniel refuted.  “Anymore,” he added at the last second.

“Okay, business class,” the physician amended with a grin.

====

“Wow!” Ricky exclaimed, hugging Jenny.  “I love you, Jenny.”

The family was back together, all safe and sound.  Daniel was still bandaged, but he'd undergone the usual battery of tests at the Mountain and been cleared, with the usual notes to watch for any abnormalities.  In the old days, Janet might have required an overnight stay, but these days, she knew that with Jack and twelve children, Daniel would be well looked after.

Jonny and Jenny told their stories several times, not just about their emergency landing but about their experience in Louisiana.  Little Danny shared his baseball success, too.  In fact, the whole clan relayed their adventures of their day.

When it was time for the children to go to bed, they'd all done so reluctantly.

“How's the head?” Jack asked his lover, joining Daniel on the patio porch and dropping a kiss atop the slightly shaggy mane of hair near the injury.

“Fine,” the younger man sighed.  “Gawd, I'm so sick and tired of concussions.”

“It could have been a whole lot worse, Love.  You and the kids were lucky,” Jack asserted as he wrapped his hands around Daniel and soaked in his scent. ~Can't live without this.~

“We'll need to take a good look at Jo tomorrow,” Daniel stated.

“The FAA is still checking her out, but once they're done, we'll get her back in shape,” Jack assured.  “She didn't look hurt.”

“Jonny and Jenny were great,” Daniel remarked with a proud smile.  “I came to right as the plane was landing.  I heard you, Babe, encouraging them, showing confidence in them to land Jo.”

“I never had a doubt.”

“No?” Daniel inquired.

“Fears, but no doubts,” Jack mused lightly.

“What did you think of Ash's request?”

“It's against the law, but I'm for it,” Jack answered about the youngest Munchkin's request to fly Jo the next time they went up.  Like Jenny, she still wasn't able to reach the brakes which made flying a bit of a no-no at this point. “Danny, I've let Jonny fly before.”

“I have, too,” Daniel admitted, clarifying by adding, “If they've asked and we're in clear space.”  He let out a sigh and noted, “Jack, we were in clear space today.  What happened was totally unexpected.”

“Flying lessons,” Jack suggested.  “Danny, I've got an idea.”

“Why am I worried?” Daniel laughed.

“Look, we've taught them a lot of the basics ourselves.  We've had lessons; they've eaten it up, all of them,” Jack noted.  “Agreed?”

“Agreed.”

“Carter can set it up at the Mountain.  We'll have our own private flight school,” Jack put forth.  “Look, they can't solo.  The little ones aren't tall enough, but we can let them really learn the flight instruments and experience different flying conditions.  Carter can rig the pedals so they can reach them.  By the time they can really go to flight school and solo, they'll be experts.”

“You don't think that'll raise a few eyebrows?”

“What are they gonna do?  Call the FAA and complain that a group of kids are expert pilots before they walk in the door?  Who's gonna believe that?”

Daniel laughed and nodded.

“I can call Carter?” Jack asked hopefully, fully prepared to follow through once his husband agreed.

“Yeah,” Daniel concurred as he turned around.  “Make sure Sam sets something up for JD, Babe.  I don't want him to feel left out.”

“A mini, mini flight console,” Jack teased.  Suddenly, the mood changed.  Love was emoting from both men, and their close call jumped to the forefront of their minds.  Their eyes locked on each other and then they kissed, a kiss that said so much more than words.  It was a reminder of their need and desire, and of their pact.  There was no life for either man without the other.  “I love you, Angel, so friggin' much.”

“I love you, too.”

With their bodies intent on a passionate reunion as soon as they hit their bedroom, the lovers kissed their way inside the house, locking it up for the night.  Then they kissed and fondled their way up the stairs.  They almost fell into their room, ready to romp instantly.

“Jack?”

“Danny?”

“I don't think we're alone,” Daniel stated, his face turned towards the bed and his lips still on his husband's.

“Daddy, come here,” Jenny ordered.  “Aunt Janet said you needed to rest.”

“We want to make sure you get your forty winks,” Jonny laughed.

“Oh,” Daniel replied, sharing a deflated look with Jack.  “Uh, be right back,” he said before going into the bathroom with his pajamas.

“Kids, you know that I can look after Daddy,” Jack asserted. ~Come on!  Give your old man a break and scram!~

None of the children moved, causing Jack to let out a small groan.  He picked up his pajamas and headed to the bathroom so he could change.

“Daddy's in there,” Aislinn interrupted with a coy smile on her face.  “Daddy's supposed to rest.”

“Yes, I know,” Jack responded dryly.  ~This wasn't what I'd planned.~

====

Minutes later, Jack and Daniel were lying in bed, surrounded by almost all of their children.  Though Jonny and Jenny had been the first, Aislinn and Little Danny had quickly followed.  Not long after that, Ricky wandered in.  The latest additions were Chenoa and Lulu.  All of them were peacefully snuggled together in the large bed.  Jenny was leaning on Jack and was almost asleep.

“Dad?”

“Yes, Red.”

“I knew you'd talk us down.  We just had to get you on the radio, and then I knew we'd be okay.  I kept telling that man to call you.”

“He did, Princess,” Jack replied.  “It just took a little time, and then I had to call General Hank,” he said, referring to General Hank Landry.

“He got the helicopter?”

“Yep.  He had me up in the air in no time flat,” Jack informed quietly, his fingers massaging Jenny's head.  “I'm very proud of you, Jenny.”

“Dad, was it okay that I was scared?” Jenny asked quietly.  The little girl was seldom scared of anything, but today she'd truly been frightened.  She wondered if that meant she was weak.  ~I didn't like being scared.~

“Jenny, I was scared, too.  Being afraid is not a bad thing.  It usually saves your life.”

“I was scared, too, Jenny,” Jonny reminded from his spot, which was practically on top of Daniel.

“I don't think I've ever been scared before, not like that,” Jenny responded.  “I think it was because Daddy was asleep.  I wouldn't have been scared if he'd been awake.”

“Sorry, Jenny,” Daniel replied, reaching over and stroking her arm.

“I love you, Daddy.”

“I love you, too, Sweetie.”

Jack and Daniel shared a look.  Their kids were tired, but apparently, they all still had a need to talk and relive what had happened.  That was fine with them. They'd do whatever was necessary to keep their brood feeling secure.  The couple shared a smile and then rejoined the conversation.  Tomorrow, the family would be even more tired than they were now, but that was okay.  They were together, happy, healthy, and alive in their very special Colorado Springs home.

~~Finis - Finished - Done - The End - But is it ever Really?~~

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