Nyan and the Munchkins
Category: Slash, Drama, Romance, Established Relationship
Pairing: Jack/Daniel ... and it's all J/D
Season: Beyond the Series - January 12, 2009
Spoilers: The Broca Divide (minor), New Ground
Written: October 17-19,21-24,27,31, November 1-2, 2005 Revised for consistency: August 12,26, 2007
Summary: Nyan of Bedrosia meets the Munchkins of Colorado Springs.
Disclaimer: Usual disclaimers -- not mine, wish they were, especially Daniel, and Jack, too, but they aren't. A gal can dream though!
1) This fic, in part, is by request of Leo, who wanted a little more background on what Nyan is up to.
2) Sometimes, Jack and Daniel speak almost telepathically. Their “silent” words to each other are indicated by asterisks instead of quotes, such as **Jack, we can't.**
3) Silent, unspoken thoughts by various characters are indicated with ~ in front and behind them, such as ~Where am I?~
4) This fic stands alone, but it does reference my other fic(s), “Modulations”
5) Thanks to my betas who always make my fics better: QuinGem, Claudia, Tove, Patti, Heather, Linda!
Nyan and the Munchkins
Jack tucked in his shirt as he spoke, “Danny, are you sure Nyan is
prepared to deal with the Munchkins?”
“Yes, I'm positive,” Daniel responded, rolling his eyes as he buttoned up his tan and white striped shirt.
This had been the twelfth time in the last twenty-four hours that Jack had asked that question. He was concerned because today, for the first time, Nyan would be caring for the Munchkins. It would only be for an hour or two, and they'd be close by, but the lovers felt it was important to give their triplets time to adjust to Nyan before leaving them alone with him.
The couple wasn't worried about the older children. If they were ever with them at the SGC and something happened to draw Jack and Daniel away, the couple felt confident that both Jennifer and David could handle themselves and take care of their younger siblings, but the more likely situation to occur was for Jack and Daniel to just have the Munchkins with them. Eventually, that might also include the twins, but right now, the two youngest Jackson-O'Neills weren't taken to the SGC with any regularity.
“Maybe we should stick around and ...”
“Jack, we're toying with fire if we wait,” Daniel warned. “There are days when we have to go to the SGC and have to take the Munchkins with us. If something happens while they're there, we need to make sure they will be cared for by someone they, and we, trust.”
“I know, but ...” a somewhat resistant Jack began.
“Jack, we've talked about this over and over again, and you agreed,” Daniel admonished as he combed his hair. “In fact, it was *your* idea.”
The general sighed as he sat down at the foot of the bed, lightly clasping his hands in front of him.
“Yeah, it was,” the older man acknowledged as he thought back on their November conversation.
“I think we need to find someone specific, and anytime we have the brood with us, that person is solely responsible for guarding the kids,” the older man suggested.
“Their own bodyguard: in our offices?”
“Outside the office. I thought we could come up with something to keep them close, so they'd be right there if the alarm sounded or we were called.”
“So out of our hair, but ...” Daniel began.
“There in a flash,” Jack completed.
Nodding, Daniel responded, “I like that, but it has to be someone we trust, Jack.”
“We can talk about that.”
“Jack, I know,” Daniel said excitedly. “What about Nyan?”
Nyan had been on Earth for several years now. He'd helped SG-1 out of a dangerous situation when they'd visited his home world of Bedrosia. He'd subsequently been given refugee status on Earth and had begun working as a research assistant for Daniel almost from the second he'd first arrived through the Stargate. He was an easy going archaeologist who had proven himself to be courageous and open minded.
Daniel continued, “When we bring the kids, he can easily work in the general lab. It's just across from my office and down a few yards. He'd be close by, easily available. Jack, the children would love Nyan.”
Jack nodded, considering it for a moment, and then agreeing, “Hammond would like that; wouldn't pull an SF off their regular routine, and I trust Nyan, too. He's capable, reliable, and ...”
“You trust him.”
“I trust him,” Jack said with a smile. “Little Danny will drive him crazy with questions.”
Daniel laughed and then commented, “And that's why Nyan would be perfect. I think he'd be patient with the children, and we could talk to him about what kind of things they can or can't know.”
“Do you think he'd do it, without being ordered to?”
“Jack,” Daniel spoke almost as if the word had been a chastisement.
“Okay, let's talk to him. Danny, Nyan shares workspace with some of the other civilians, right?”
“Would it be inappropriate to just give him his own workspace; let him use that general lab full time?” Jack asked, thinking their lives would be even easier if they didn't have to go searching for the Bedrosian.
“He'd love that.”
“And what about the others? Jealousy?”
“We move people around all the time, Jack,” Daniel spoke. “Besides, Nyan's due for some recognition. He's really been helpful over the years. I was talking with Margorie last week, and she said they finally found the link between ...”
“Let's not talk shop.”
Daniel smiled and said, “The point is, I feel comfortable making a request for Nyan to get that space; he's earned it.”
“Okay, then,” Jack agreed, kissing his husband.
//End of Flashback//
Smiling sweetly, Daniel sat down next to Jack and took his life partner's right hand. They hadn't needed to implement their new Munchkin protocol until today, which was fortunate since it had taken several weeks to gain both Nyan's and General Hammond's agreement and approval and to get Nyan's new lab situated to handle both his job and the children, if necessary.
After hearing their concerns and discussing the possibilities, Nyan had readily agreed to help Jack and Daniel safeguard the Munchkins, when requested. Nyan loved children and was looking forward to having some of his own one day soon. In the meantime, doing some occasional babysitting for Jack and Daniel seemed like good practice for child rearing.
Jack and Daniel had also talked ad nauseam to the friendly Bedrosian about not underestimating their children.
“They may only be two, Nyan, but all three are ... creative,” Daniel had told Nyan recently.
“We don't talk down to them; we talk to and with them,” Jack had explained, adding, “They have Daniel's brains. I think they're smarter than me already.”
“Jaaaaack!” Daniel had whined, though he inwardly agreed that a slight warning about Little Danny was appropriate, since they had recently discovered the toddler to be a genius-in-the-making.
Nyan had chuckled, certain the Jackson-O'Neill children would be an interesting group of youngsters to get to know.
“They'll love Nyan, Jack, and they'll be safe if something does happen. That's the most important thing, isn't it?” Daniel asked, squeezing Jack's hand gently as the lovers sat on their bed.
“Yes. I don't know why I'm suddenly so unsure,” Jack commented.
“You do?” the older man asked.
Nodding, Daniel explained, “We're their parents, and we're responsible for what happens to them. I know we take the Mountain for granted. I mean, uh, we know it's dangerous, but, to us, it's ... a piece of cake. Now, though, we're bringing our children into it. We've taken some of them through the Stargate and exposed them, not just to other cultures, but to other worlds, worlds that are far, far away. By setting this up with Nyan, we're admitting something could happen and that we might not always be there to protect the Munchkins, or our other children. That's why you're so unsure, Jack. You're scared.”
“Petrified, for them,” Daniel answered.
Jack and Daniel paused their conversation, each with small smiles on their faces as their eyes spoke of their nation of two. They weren't afraid of any part of their future, not even mortality, just as long as they were together.
After a few moments of this silent understanding, Jack took a deep breath and let out a long sigh, letting go of his fears.
“Ready?” Daniel asked with a smile.
The older man nodded, replying, “Let's get the Munchkins.”
“I love you, Jack,” Daniel said, still holding his husband's hand.
“I am so grateful for that, Danny. Every day is better than the last -- every day,” Jack spoke lovingly.
Sharing a tender kiss, the lovers stood and continued on with their day.
Jack and Daniel's real intent in going to the SGC today was to introduce their triplets to Nyan. With General Hammond's blessings, Nyan's morning had been set aside solely for the purpose of getting to know the children. The plan was for the couple to spend an hour in Daniel's office. Nyan would come in, be introduced, and stick around, ostensibly to help Daniel with something, but he'd really to be there for the kids to get used to.
After an hour or so, Jack and Daniel would leave the office, leaving the Munchkins in Nyan's care. They weren't going far, only to Nyan's new office. General Hammond had been pleased to allocate the general lab across from Daniel's office for Nyan's sole use. Sam had set up a monitor in the office so that the couple could watch the interaction between Nyan and their children.
The couple did have a briefing scheduled with Hammond and their teammates that would last about forty-five minutes. It would focus on an upcoming mission to Hedry, paying a courtesy call on the Hedronix, one of the Tau'ri's most trusted and needed allies at the moment.
“Excuse me,” Nyan said shyly as he tapped on the doorframe and then walked a couple of steps into Daniel's office. “Is this a good time?”
“Yes, uh, it is,” Daniel said, setting down the tablet he had been studying. “Jack,” he called out to his lover who was working in the other half of the office.
Looking up, Jack nodded and stood up. He walked over towards the center of the enlarged space that was Daniel's office. On his side of the office sat the portable playpen they called ToddlerTown. Inside, the three children were happily playing with various toys.
“Munchkins, Daddy and I have someone we'd like you to meet,” Jack said as he leaned over to pick Jonny up.
Daniel was just a second behind, picking up Little Danny and then putting him down on the floor. He then reached for Aislinn, pulling her up and out of the playing area. He had intended on putting her down on the floor, too, but she was clinging to him a bit forcefully, so he continued to hold her in his arms.
Jack continued, “Munchkins, this is Nyan. He works at the Mountain with Daddy, studying rocks and things.”
“Jack!” Daniel chastised. Facing Nyan, he added, “Don't mind him.”
“I never do,” Nyan teased, feeling brave in teasing the general today.
“I could have you fired,” Jack retaliated in jest. He'd always told Nyan that humor was a good thing and was needed in the workplace. When Nyan had first begun to work at the SGC, he was very studious and focused on his tasks. He still was, but every time Jack had the chance, he would try and joke with the alien about something and encouraged him to engage in some lighthearted banter, especially when in a casual atmosphere like they were at the moment. ~You've come a long way, Nyan. Well done!~
“Jack!” Daniel warned again, shaking his head.
“Or I could just be quiet,” Jack said, smiling at his son.
“I was just teasing, Sir,” the five-foot-six alien clarified.
Suddenly, a snicker drew the adults' attention.
It was Jonny, laughing, “Dad quiet?”
“Everyone's a critic,” Jack retorted off-handedly; then he smiled at Jonny and gave his son a quick kiss.
“Nyan, that's Jonny,” Daniel said, pointing to the small boy Jack held in his arms. “The one tugging on your pants leg is Little Danny, and this is our little princess,” he said, smiling and bouncing Aislinn once, “Aislinn. We call her Ash.”
“Hello,” Nyan said pleasantly, looking at each of the children and smiling. “*Little* Danny?” he questioned, looking down.
“Lil' 'cause Daddy big Danny,” Little Danny quipped.
“Boy, I'll say. He's so big ...” Jack began, his mind lusting for his husband something fierce.
“JACK!” Daniel said, eyes flashing daggers.
Jack grinned, pleased with himself, although since the children were present, he decided it was best to change the topic of discussion.
Little Danny tugged on Nyan's pants again, and when the alien looked down again, the little boy held up his arms to be held. Obligingly, Nyan picked him up, smiling as he did so.
“You arkgist like Daddy?” Little Danny inquired curiously.
“Archaeologist,” Jack mouthed quietly, though it was unnecessary.
“Yes, I am now. I had a lot of knowledge from the place I was born, but when I arrived here, I had to go back to school, to learn about this place,” Nyan answered. “Actually, my expertise is in Anthropology.”
“That Daddy, too,” Aislinn responded.
“And linkist,” Jonny added, bobbing his head up and down definitively.
“Lingish,” Little Danny corrected.
“Linguist,” Daniel said, correcting both of his sons. “Let's sit down and talk for a while.”
The group moved over to the cot that was against the far wall, the lovers impressed when Nyan sank down to the floor and crossed his legs Indian-style instead of using one of the chairs. Little Danny immediately sat down to Nyan's right, so Jonny sat down on Nyan's left. Aislinn was content to stay in Daniel's arms for the time being.
“Where you from?” Little Danny asked.
“Nyan's from a faraway place. It's a secret,” Daniel stated.
“We keep secrets,” Jonny said.
“Are you sure?” the younger father questioned.
“Daddy!” Aislinn scolded.
With a laugh, Daniel informed, “Nyan is from a place called Bedrosia. You can't talk about it because it's ...”
“... secret,” Jonny completed, a scowl on his face about being doubted.
“Where Bosia?” Aislinn questioned.
“It's someplace very far from here,” Nyan answered.
“What these?” Jonny inquired, getting up on his knees to reach over and touch the side of Nyan's face.
“Sideburns,” Nyan responded, turning his face to the profile, giving the little boy a better chance to feel the hair.
“Long!” Jonny commented about the extra-long sideburns that went well below Nyan's ears.
“We go 'Rosia?” Little Danny asked as he, too, checked out the long sideburns.
“No, you can't,” Nyan answered with a sigh. “My people are at war and have been for a very long time.”
“Why?” Aislinn asked.
“They don't listen to each other,” Nyan answered. “And, each side thinks they're right. They don't want to compromise. Do you know what that means, to compromise?”
Jack and Daniel listened with approval as Nyan gently told the children about his planet, designated P2X-416, though he was careful not to refer to it as another planet, but just as a faraway land. He told them about his 'country' (world) being divided into two 'political powers' (continents), Bedrosia and Optrica, and how a long time ago (roughly two-thousand years ago), Bedrosia went through a period of violent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, which they called the Upheaval.
“Daddy, 'Rosia like Ank'et Egypt?” the Munchkin genius asked.
“Uh, well, in a way, I guess,” Daniel answered, not really sure which way to go in his response.
“It lost, like 'Lantis?” the boy questioned.
“No, Little Danny, it's not lost. It's just someplace we can't go to because of their ... political situation,” Daniel responded.
“My people don't like outsiders,” the alien sighed.
“But why you argue?” Little Danny asked as he untied Nyan's shoelace.
Chuckling at the boy's actions, but not interfering, Nyan replied, “My people, the Bedrosians, believed that life was created by Nefertum. He was our creator.”
“God created us,” Aislinn said softly.
Daniel replied, “Yes, he did, Ash, but different people believe in different things, and some people call God by different names. Nefertum, though, wasn't a real god. We'll talk some more about that later.”
“Okay,” the little girl agreed, leaning her back against Daniel's shoulder.
Nyan continued, “The Optricans didn't believe in Nefertum. They believed that our people had evolved in another 'country' (world) and been brought to Bedrosia by a special device (an interstellar gateway).”
“Plane?” Jonny asked.
“Sounds good,” Jack spoke, trying not to get too far off the beaten track with their little white lies but jumping on anything that sounded simple and also appeased the triplets' curiosity.
“Why fight?” Little Danny asked, scrunching his nose in confusion.
“They fought because both sides wanted to be right, and they weren't happy unless they were right,” Nyan answered. “Even when shown proof that they were wrong, the Bedrosians refused to believe it. They preferred to keep arguing and continue fighting,” he said with acceptance, but longing in his heart.
“What 'bout family?” Aislinn asked, finally scooting down from Daniel's safe haven to kneel down in front of Nyan. “You go visit?”
“No, I can never go home,” Nyan responded.
“That sad,” Aislinn spoke.
“Don't be sad,” Nyan requested. Smiling, he said, “I have a new family now. Everyone at the SGC is my family. Besides, I'm a scientist, and being a scientist means learning new things and exploring new ways. Your father has been a great teacher,” he said, smiling gratefully at Daniel.
Daniel nodded and noted, “Nyan's been a great help here. He's very curious about the universe, and he's open to new things, something that is very important in archaeology and anthropology. In fact, he started out as a research assistant, but he learned so fast that it wasn't long before we promoted him to be a cultural consultant.”
“What that?” Little Danny asked as he looked up at his father.
“He's an expert on different lifestyles,” Daniel explained to the pint-sized genius in the making.
“What that mean?” Aislinn questioned.
“It means he compares how we live here with how people live in Japan, and even how The Simpsons live in Springfield,” Jack teased.
“Who are the Simpsons?” Nyan questioned curiously.
“Homer funny,” Jonny laughed.
“Unfortunately, there was little humor in my 'country',” Nyan informed. “Who's Homer?”
Jonny gasped, “You no know Homer?”
“No, I don't,” Nyan answered.
“But you know Bart,” Aislinn said, nodding as if to will the man to answer 'yes'.
“No, I don't,” Nyan repeated.
Jonny gasped again, got up, and toddled over to Jack, saying, “Dad, hafta show Nyan Homer!”
Jack laughed, tickling his son's abdomen, and suggested, “Maybe the next time you come to the Mountain, we can bring a DVD and show him. How would that be?”
“That good!” Jonny turned around and walked back to his spot, plopping down on the floor. “We show you Homer.”
“I'm sure it will be entertaining,” Nyan responded dryly.
After a few more minutes, Jack and Daniel got up and continued with their work, leaving Nyan to chat with the Munchkins. Aislinn's initial hesitancy had disappeared totally.
The parents covertly watched the interaction until Daniel glanced at his watch and stated, “Jack, we have that meeting to go to.”
“Maybe you ...”
“Jack, we *both* have to go,” Daniel insisted as he stood up.
**But, Danny ...**
**The Munchkins already love Nyan, and he's been great with them. We won't always be here to watch, and, uh, considering we'll be *spying* first ...**
**Okay, okay,** Jack relented.
“Where going?” Aislinn asked her parents.
Jack and Daniel both knelt down as Jack explained, “Daddy and I have a meeting to go to for a couple of hours. While we're gone, Nyan is going to stay with you.”
“Nyan tell more 'bout 'Rosia?” Little Danny asked.
Seeing Nyan looking at them, Daniel answered, “Yes, he can. Munchkins, you be good. Uh, Dad and I need to chat with Nyan for just a minute, so back in ToddlerTown.”
After securing the three children and kissing them goodbye, Jack and Daniel, along with Nyan, went into the corridor.
“Nyan, it's okay to talk in general about Bedrosia, just keep equating it to a country and reiterate that it's faraway. Don't let them back you into a corner,” Daniel stated.
“Nice job, by the way, on what you said about Bedrosia,” Jack praised. “That was good thinking, but you might want to keep some diversionary tactics in your mind. The Munchkins are very inquisitive.”
“I noticed,” Nyan chuckled as he nodded. Glancing through the door at the trio, he commented, “They're happy.”
“And we intend to keep them that way,” Jack replied. “We've already discussed the rules for when they're in ToddlerTown and for when they're running loose in Daniel's office. Don't be afraid to enforce them, and whatever you do, don't turn your back ...”
“On Jonny. He's an escape artist; trust us,” Daniel said, completing Jack's sentence as he stood with his hands in his pockets. “If you let him out of ToddlerTown, watch him like a hawk.”
“He's not afraid to roam the halls of the SGC; we've learned this from experience,” Jack said, wincing slightly from the memory of one of the Munchkins very first visits to the SGC.
“I'll keep an extra eye on him,” Nyan promised.
Jack and Daniel nodded and then headed for Nyan's office. Nyan knew they would be monitoring for a while, and he was fine with that. The brown-haired man returned to the office, going over to the children.
“How would you like to play a game?” Nyan asked the triplets.
“Yay!” all three Munchkins cheered.
Nyan took them out of ToddlerTown and sat them down in a circle. He told them to hold hands and close their eyes.
“Each of you think of your favorite place,” Nyan told them.
“Daddy's arms,” Aislinn said.
In Nyan's office, Jack looked at Daniel and smiled, saying, “Children say the darndest things.”
“Yeah, don't they?” Daniel replied, sighing and leaning in to Jack for just a moment. His heart was singing from Aislinn's words. ~I never knew I'd be this lucky.~
Nyan smiled and patted the little girl gently on the head, saying, “That's a great place, but think of a building or place.” Nyan waited, chuckling at the intensity of the children's concentration, noses scrunched, faces wrinkled, and grunts of effort emanating from all of them. “Now imagine that place on another world, just like when watching a science fiction movie on TV. You meet a stranger, and you have to describe this special place to them. You can't tell them what it is; you can only say how it makes you feel. Who wants to go first?”
There was silence for a minute, but then Little Danny broke the circle, opened his eyes, and raised his hand as he said, “Me!”
“Tell me about this special place,” Nyan said.
“What's it made of?” Nyan asked.
Little Danny looked to the side for a second, and then said, “Like Lincoln Logs -- wood.”
“What are Lincoln Logs?” Nyan asked, having never heard of them before.
Jonny frowned and chastised, “They *Lincoln* Logs.”
“I'll have to research that,” Nyan chuckled.
“That easy; it Bij 'n' Katie's house,” Aislinn said.
“Assssssh! Nyan s'pose guess,” Little Danny whined.
The little girl brought her hands to her mouth and gasped, then exclaimed, “I sorry; forgot!”
Little Danny sighed, but then he smiled and leaned over to hug his sister, saying, “It okay. What you think of?”
“We're very lucky,” Daniel said. “But we also need to get to that briefing.”
“You're right,” Jack agreed, reaching for the remote that turned off the monitor. “Remind me to buy Nyan some Lincoln Logs.”
“I'll do that,” Daniel chuckled as they headed for the briefing.
Nyan smiled at the two children who were currently arguing over the status of an artifact he'd shown them. Jonny was insisting it was a 'rock', and Little Danny was glaring at him saying it was an 'art'fact.' There was no anger in the quarrel, and it simply reminded Nyan who the boys' parents were.
The man smiled and wondered how he'd grown so fond of the little devils in what seemed like minutes.
~They definitely have their parent's charm,~ Nyan thought.
Aislinn was apparently tired of the bickering as she rolled her eyes and said firmly, “It rock and art'fact.”
“Aislinn's right, Boys,” Nyan confirmed, deciding the young girl had the right idea about bringing the argument to an end, especially since he suspected the two boys could argue like this all day.
The group was interrupted by a knock on the door. A Marine came in, carrying a pile of papers.
“This is a translation for Doctor Jackson to take a look at,” the military man said.
Nyan reached out a hand to take the documents just as three irritated voices yelled out, “Jackson-O'Neill.”
The Marine gave the children a disgusted look and sneered at Nyan, “I've heard of sleeping your way to the top, but babysitting your way there is new.”
Careful to keep his tone up-beat so he didn't upset the children, Nyan simply smiled and pointed towards the door as he said, “Goodbye, Carson.”
The Marine left, and Nyan turned to look at the children, hoping the Marine hadn't upset them. It seemed he hadn't as Jonny and Aislinn were now playing with some of their toys. Little Danny, however, was looking at Nyan with a curious expression.
“Nyan, what 'sleeping way to top; mean?” Little Danny asked.
Nyan hesitated, but thinking quickly, came up with what he hoped was a good enough distraction, asking, “Little Danny, are you ticklish? I'm not.”
The little boy's eyes grew wide, and then he squealed with delight at the game that was apparently beginning and ran to hide behind Jonny and Aislinn, who were now giggling as well.
The giggles filled the hall of the SGC as Jack and Daniel headed back to the archaeologist's office.
“Sounds like they're having a good time,” Daniel remarked.
The lovers paused outside of the door, each able to see a glimpse of Nyan and the Munchkins. Nyan was on the floor with Jonny on his chest. Little Danny was on his feet, and Aislinn was fingering through Nyan's wavy hair, giggling.
“Nyan, make us 'Drosia Stew?” Little Danny asked, his stomach growling from sudden hunger as he referred to a food item Nyan had mentioned earlier that was a favorite of his on Bedrosia.
“Maybe we can have it for lunch one day, if your parents agree,” Nyan answered.
“We eat your place?” Jonny asked.
“Maybe,” Nyan replied thoughtfully. “I have a little place not far from here.”
Jonny drew a breath as he rocked back and forth atop Nyan, and then he asked, “You married? Dad 'n' Daddy married.”
“No, I'm not, but I hope to be soon,” Nyan responded candidly.
“Who you marry?” Little Danny asked inquisitively.
“She like your burns?” Aislinn inquired before Nyan could answer Little Danny's question. She leaned over so that her head was practically on the floor to see the side of Nyan's face and added, “Burns very long.”
Laughing, Nyan corrected, “Sideburns, Ash, and, yes, she does.”
“She pretty?” Aislinn asked.
“She is very pretty,” Nyan said, his eyes shining as he thought about his lady love.
“Is she scitist like you 'n' Daddy?” Little Danny asked.
“No, far from it, but she has a beautiful heart,” Nyan responded.
“Jack, did you know Nyan was seeing someone?” Daniel asked quietly.
“It's that girl from the Land of the Light,” Jack explained. Seeing his husband's blank expression, Jack smirked, “Come on, Danny, remember when we went for that feast last year? You couldn't miss their goo goo eyes.”
“Goo goo eyes?” Daniel asked, staring at his lover.
Jack tilted his head slightly and shrugged innocently before saying, “She's the one, though.”
“Oh,” Daniel replied. Chuckling slightly, he observed, “I, uh, guess that's why he's always volunteering to go on the cultural exchanges there.”
“It takes the meaning of a long distance relationship to a whole new level,” Jack smirked.
“It, uh, opens up a lot of questions, too, Jack, like, well, where would they live?” Daniel asked. “Does Nyan ... commute through the Stargate?” he asked, smiling.
“Are you trying to stand in the way of true love, Daniel?” Jack asked.
“Not me, Babe,” Daniel responding lightly, peeking in the office again. “Besides, I'm not the one who would have to arrange for her clearance.”
Jack gave his lover a look, but then shook it off, deciding to let things play out in their own time and way.
“We go to wedding?” Aislinn asked eagerly.
**Rescue time!** Daniel said, moving into his office. “Hey, Munchkins, we're back!”
“Daaaaddy!” the Munchkins cheered. Seeing Jack, a chorus of “Dad!” rang out, too.
The children got up and ran to their parents who knelt down and gave them hugs and kisses.
“Did you have a nice time with Nyan?” Daniel asked.
The children delighted their parents with a rambling discourse of their two hours with Nyan; it was clear that Jack and Daniel had made a sound decision in having Nyan be responsible for the Munchkins whenever they had to be out of the office.
“It's time to go home. Go get your jackets,” Jack ordered, the children running over to the Munchkin-size coat rack that was on Jack's side of the expanded office to do as they were told.
“Were they okay?” Daniel inquired.
“Daniel, they were a lot of fun. I'm glad you asked me to spend some time with them. They're good practice for the future,” Nyan answered.
“Yes, and about that,” Jack said, putting his arm around Nyan's shoulder as he walked him towards the doorway, “When's the wedding to that cutie from the Land of Light?”
As Nyan ducked his head shyly, Daniel called out, “JACK!” in rebuke.
Turning around, Jack shrugged, which seemed to be his answer for most everything today.
“Thank you, Nyan, and seriously, if there's anything I can do to help facilitate things with ...” Jack offered.
Nyan blushed slightly, called out his good-byes to the children, and then hurried back to his office.
“Jack, you're incorrigible!” Daniel told his lover.
“Daddy, Nyan make us stew?” Aislinn said.
“If he'd like to, I think we can arrange that,” Daniel told the Munchkins. “Let's get these jackets on.”
Approaching the first set of elevators they would use to exit Cheyenne Mountain, Daniel was holding both Jonny's and Aislinn's hands while Jack was holding Little Danny's. Nearby, Carson and two others were engaged in conversation.
~I 'member him.~ Seeing the familiar face of the Marine reminded Little Danny of something. As they walked, he asked, “Dad, what mean 'sleeping way to top'?”
In an instant, both parents stopped in shock and exchanged a quick glance.
Kneeling down, Jack questioned, “Where did you hear that expression, Little Danny?”
The little boy looked around and, finding his target, answered, “He say it. He bring Daddy papers.”
“Did he mention any names, Son?” Jack asked nonchalantly.
“No. Dad, Nyan at top?” Little Danny asked innocently.
Jack smiled disarmingly as he asked, “Why?”
“He say Nyan babysitting to top. We not babies!” Little Danny argued.
“Not babies!” Jonny reiterated.
“Daniel, I forgot something. Can you get these ragamuffins to the truck without me?” Jack asked, his eyes conveying his true mission.
“I think we can manage, Jack,” the archaeologist answered. **Don't kill him.**
**That would be too easy.**
“Dad, what it mean?” Little Danny asked again.
“It means getting a good night's sleep so that you can be your best,” Jack answered, twisting the truth slightly.
“No un'erstand,” Little Danny said.
Daniel clarified, “It's just an expression, Little Danny. Adults say silly things sometimes; that's one of them.”
“It bad, huh?” Little Danny deduced.
“It's impolite,” Daniel stated.
Little Danny scrunched his nose, obviously thinking things over. Then his eyes widened as he made a realization.
“Nyan trick me,” the young boy revealed.
Jack and Daniel shared a look, and then Daniel asked curiously, “How did he trick you, Son?”
Little Danny looked impressed with Nyan's sneakiness as he replied, “I ask him what it mean 'n' he 'stract'd me with tickles.”
**That was pretty smart, Jack, managing to distract our little genius with a tickling game.**
**Nyan's a good man ... alien, Danny.**
“We'll see you upstairs,” Daniel told Jack as he hurried the children along.
Once Daniel and the children were in the elevator, Jack put on his general persona and walked up to Carson and the two others.
“Dismissed,” Jack said to the other two Marines, who both made a quick retreat. He smiled at Carson, grinning so much that it made the man nervous. “Marine, I'm only going to say this once. If you ever say anything inappropriate in front of my children again, you'll be building latrines in Asia. Do you understand me?”
“Sir, yes, Sir!” Carson exclaimed.
“Let's make sure of that, shall we, Private?” Jack said as he went to the nearest corridor phone and called Sergeant Walinski, who was in charge of the cleaning detail.
Carson groaned inwardly hearing Jack's orders. He had just ordered Walinski to see to it that Carson cleaned all the bathrooms on the base personally, after he finished his regular duties.
Jack hung up the phone and returned to Carson, warning, “Mess up again, and you'll really be cleaning up the messes. Don't ask me to be more specific because you won't like my answer; and, Marine, no one sleeps their way to the top around here, but you're on a fast track to talking your way out of here. I'd advise you to keep your mouth shut from now on. Dismissed.”
The Marine saluted and made a hasty retreat.
Jack sighed, knowing ignorance and hate would always be a part of their world. He vowed to do his best, though, to keep their children as free of it as possible. It would be a daunting task, but it was vital. One of the keys would be to downplay the importance of people like Carson in favor of positive influences like Nyan.
~Some of the best Tau'ri are aliens,~ Jack thought, shaking his head as he headed for the elevator.
Later that night, as they sat on the roof deck, staring up at the stars, Jack and Daniel smiled. Their circle of trusted friends was growing, and it made both feel warm inside.
“Ash wasn't sure at first,” Daniel commented.
“I noticed, but I think we did the right thing not pushing it,” Jack replied.
Daniel leaned back against Jack's shoulder, his hands atop his lover's. He sighed contently.
“Jack, I think we should ask Nyan if he'd like to make lunch for the children. I mean, the more they trust him and are used to him, the easier it will be if they have to be with him for a longer period of time.”
“I agree. They've already got the rest of the brood curious about him,” the older man observed.
“Yes, Love?” Jack responded.
“Nyan and the Munchkins ...”
“What about them?” Jack asked innocently.
“It sounds like a movie or something,” Daniel laughed.
Jack laughed as he shifted, lowering Daniel to the floor of the roof deck, and said, “Now that's just plain silly.”
“You're right. Kiss me, Silly Man,” Daniel demanded.
With smiles on their faces, the lovers kissed under the watchful eye of the moon, full of love and warmth, and the knowledge that their universe was truly forever.
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