Regulations for the Brave and Harried

Author:  Orrymain
Category:  Slash, Drama, Romance, Established Relationship
Pairing:  Jack/Daniel ... and it's all J/D
Rating:  PG-13
Season:  4 - October 10, 2000
Spoilers:  Scorched Earth (minor)
Size:  23kb, ficlet
Written:  December 31, 2017, January 6-7, 2018
Summary:  Hammond's had enough and he orders Jack to handle the situation.
Disclaimer:  Usual disclaimers -- not mine, wish they were, especially Daniel, and Jack, too, but they aren't.  A gal can dream though!
Notes:  
1) 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.**
2) Silent, unspoken thoughts by various characters are indicated with ~ in front and behind them, such as ~Where am I?~

Regulations for the Brave and Harried
by Orrymain

“Finally, people, I see a feast on your schedule for tomorrow?” Hammond questioned with a slight smile.

“Yes, Sir.  Just a little thank you from the Enkarans,” Jack elaborated.

“They're very grateful that we were able to find them a new home, Sir,” Sam added.

“Bring me back a bone,” Hammond teased as the briefing with SG-1 came to a conclusion.

“We'll do better than that, General.  We'll bring you back a fruit basket.”

The team chuckled as they stood and headed for the exit.

“Colonel, a word,” the major general beckoned before walking into his office that adjoined the briefing room.

Jack grabbed a quick hold of his lover and suggested, “Lunch in fifteen?”

“You think you'll be out of there that quick?  General Hammond had that serious look.”

“He always has that look.  Fifteen, in the mess.”

Daniel nodded and made his way out of the briefing room while Jack headed into Hammond's office.

“Have a seat, Colonel,” Hammond ordered as he closed both of his office doors for more privacy.

~And then again, maybe this will take longer than I thought,~ Jack pondered while sitting down and wishing there were something he could fidget with during the meeting.  He coughed, a nervous distraction he often did for no reason other than to shift his consciousness away from whatever situation was looming that didn't seem to be a positive one.  “General, did someone die?”

Hammond let out a small laugh as he sat down, but then his face once again expressed a more somber tone.

“Colonel, we have a situation.”

“The Goa'uld?”

“No, something here on the base.”

“With one of our teams, Sir?”

“Yes.”

“Which one?”

“Yours.”

“SG-1?  Uh, General, we just had a full briefing.  If there was a problem, why not mention it then?”

“Because I'm the commander of this base and that gives me certain ... benefits.”

“As in ... passing the buck ... Sir?”

Ignoring the question, Hammond stated, “Jack, as you know our security here is top drawer and we monitor everything.”

~Am I about to retire?~  All Jack could think of was that somehow his relationship with Daniel had been discovered.  He thought back to yesterday in his office when he and Daniel had full-out sex.  ~Sorry, Danny.  I might just be retiring, again.~

“I've used our footage to select a few examples of the problem,” Hammond announced as he placed in front of Jack a handful of captures from the security tapes.  “What do you see?”

Wary, Jack leaned forward and felt both relieved and confused as the images came into view.  He was relieved because the pictures were not of he and his lover having their way with each other.  He was confused because of who actually was in the photographs.

“Carter, Sir?”

“Use your powers of observation, Colonel.  *What* do you see?”

“I see Major Carter,” Jack answered.  “I don't know what you want me to say, General.”

“Take a closer look.”

“I see ...” Jack's eyes left the photos to look at his commanding officer, “... hair, Sir?”

“I'm glad to see you still have your powers of observations.  Colonel, I realize that you and Major Carter had it tough saving the world from the Replicators not that long ago and it took you a week or so to find your way back to Earth, but how a woman can grow that much hair that fast is beyond me.”  Hammond tapped his fingers on another picture.  “Look at this.  I have no objections to longer hair on Air Force female personnel, but, Jack, on my base, they're going to use a hairbrush or a comb.”

“Yeah, it's a bit ... scraggly, Sir,” Jack conceded as he starred at a photo of Sam taken in the gate room upon the arrival of the Tok'ra, Anise.  ~Hard to look at Carter when that Frizee, Frazee, whatever her name is, showed up.~

“Jack, Major Carter is a good looking woman, and I admit women's hair styles are not my area of expertise, but the Air Force is.  I've been lenient in many ways in this command.  You people face unimaginable dangers.  My personal feelings are to give you all a little leeway considering the jobs you do here, for the nation and the universe, but I have to draw a line somewhere.  I thought this would be a temporary thing, but Major Carter continues to ignore the regulations.  She's a leader, Jack.  She needs to get in line.”

“And you want me to put her there.”

“You're her CO, and she's your second-in-command.  It's your responsibility.”  Hammond stared sternly at his 2IC and ordered, “Get it done.  I'm not demanding she go back to this,” he showed the flagship team leader another picture of Sam from her first day at Stargate Command where she was the mirror image of what a woman in the military should look like, per the regulations, “but I expect her to her to pull it back and find her hairbrush.  Understood?”

“Yes, Sir.”  Jack stood and headed for the door.  He turned back and asked, “When you say 'get it done', do you mean now, next year, this month ...”

“Jack, get it done.  Dismissed.”

Jack nodded and slowly walked out the door.  It was easier for him to kick a recruit out of the Program, to transfer a lieutenant to some lousy assignment in the middle of nowhere, or to eat spinach that he hated, than it was to face his 2IC and tell her to get a haircut, but that's what he was about to do.

~First, Danny.~

====

“What's wrong?” Daniel asked as he sat across from his soulmate at a table in the mess hall.  “Jack, you're picking at your food.  Either you're sick or something's wrong.”

“I have to tell Carter to comb her hair.”

“Excuse me?”

“Hammond ordered me to order Carter to get her hair back to regs, or at least closer to it.”

“Oh.”

“It is a little ... off the norm.”

“I think she's just rebelling a little,” the archaeologist opined.

“Rebelling against what?”

“I don't know.”

“That's a big help.”

“Jack, just tell her.”

“You think this is going to be easy?”

“It's not like you're taking her off the team or taking away her lab.”

“If it's so easy, you tell her,” Jack suggested with a flip of his right hand.

“No, no, I, uh, no.”

“Coward.”

“I'm a civilian,” Daniel chuckled.

“Daniel, I'd rather go up against the Goa'uld than tell Carter to cut her hair.”  Jack sighed in reflection.  “It was when we were stuck out there waiting for the Gate to be installed.  She didn't have any of her girlie stuff with her.”

“Girlie stuff?” Daniel echoed, trying not to laugh.

“Look, Danny, you know as well as I do that Carter sneaks in some lipstick and all that crap when we go off-world.  It's not regs, but I get it.  Women like that stuff and if it makes her happy, who am I to argue?”

“Yes, especially when you bring balls, maybe a yo-yo, some cards ...”

“You can stop anytime.”

“I'm sorry, Jack, but this is a little, uh ...”

“Funny?”

“Amusing,” Daniel agreed.  “Seriously, Jack, get it over with.  The longer you wait, the harder it will be.”

“I think Hammond's worried about the Brass.”

“Why?”

“We're about ready to test the X-301 Interceptor and I know we'll be having visitors.  I just don't know who.”

“So, if Sam's not looking more ... normal Air Force, it could look bad for General Hammond.”

“It's not that he cares, not really.”  Jack paused and opined, “It's a respect thing.”  He cocked his head and admitted, “He does let us ...”

“... get away with a lot?” Daniel mused.

“I hate to think of it that way.  Daniel, what we do here is on the unique side.  Look, I'm not downplaying how it is out there for the folks doing what I used to do out there on a regular basis, or the ones on the ground having to fight an unpopular fight, but this is a different world.  Yeah, he lets us get away with a lot more than he would if this command weren't secret and hidden under a mountain.”

“I'm sure Sam will understand.”

Jack let the fork he'd been holding drop to his plate and, as he stood up, spoke, “Wish me luck.”

“Luck,” Daniel said with a smile as he watched his lover walk away.  ~Glad I'm a civilian.~

====

“Carter!” Jack called out as he entered her lab.

“Sir?” Sam responded with a higher voice since she was surprised and couldn't think of a reason why the colonel would be in her office at the moment.

“Having fun?”

Sam looked at the device she was working on and answered, “Yes, Sir.  Did you want to help?”

“Not a chance,” Jack responded truthfully.

Sam watched as Jack ambled about her lab, staring at items he wasn't really even looking at.  Her curiosity was triggered, but she wasn't sure if she should inquire about his reason for being in her lab or not.

Grimacing, Jack turned to face his 2IC and advised, “We need to talk.”

“Yes, Sir.”

A minute passed and then another.

“Sir?”

“Oh, for crying out loud.  Carter, get a haircut, or at least find your hairbrush and use it ... on your hair.”

“A haircut?” a stunned Sam questioned.

“Come on, Carter, you have to admit that your hair has been a little ...” Jack waved his hand in a couple of small circles with one finger pointing at Sam's blonde locks, “... you know.”

“No, Sir, I don't.”

“Come on,” Jack coaxed.

“What's wrong with my hair?”

“You're not going to make this easy, are you?” the colonel questioned somewhat playfully, sensing he was being played by the major.

“I don't know what you're talking about,” Sam replied innocently.

“I'm thinking Elmendorf.”

“Are you going on vacation?”

Jack let out an unhappy cackle at the realization that his 2IC was going to make him say what he didn't want to say.  There was no way out.  He was going to have to talk about hair, which was not one of his favorite topics.

“Have it your way.”  Jack waited a beat and then explained, “Carter, I don't care squat about your hair.  I don't even notice your hair.”  Jack grimaced.  ~Maybe that wasn't the right thing to say.  Women can be so persnickety about their hair.~  He swallowed as he regrouped.  “What I meant to say is that I don't care if your hair is blonde or pink, long or short, but the Air Force does.”

“And we care what the Air Force thinks?” the woman challenged.

“Hammond does.”

“Oh,” Sam responded.  “I guess I've let it grow a little too long.”

“I don't know that's it's the length or if it's the ...”  Again, Jack gestured with his hands.  Then he sighed.  “I'm no good with this stuff.  My ex-wife always made it easy on me.  She kept her hair short.  She said it was safer when she worked on the car.”  After a few seconds, the colonel stated, “Carter, if I have to, I'll make this an order.  Are you going to make me order you to get your hair in line with policy?”

“No, Sir.  I know what the regulations are.”

Jack suddenly felt more at ease and remarked, “Daniel thinks you're rebelling.”

“That's an interesting proposition,” the blonde responded thoughtfully.

“Are you?”

“I'm not sure, Sir,” Sam answered cryptically as she smiled.  “Sir, have you noticed that out there in the universe we've met a lot of very beautiful women?”

“Have we?” Jack responded as nonchalantly as he could.  ~That would be affirm.~

“Yes, Sir, we have.”

“Are you trying to tell me you're ... jealous of those women?”

“No.  I'm just asking if you've noticed.”

“Okay, I've noticed, but you know where my heart goes.”

With a little laugh, Sam replied, “I do.”

“Okay, maybe I'm being dense here.  It wouldn't be the first time.  What do alien women have to do with your messy ... ah, scraggly ... ah, what does that have to do with your hair?”

“Nothing,” Sam conceded.  “I'm just having some fun with you, Sir.”

“Fun?  Is that what you call it?”

Sam laughed, “You've been nervous from the minute you entered my lab.  A second doesn't get an opportunity like this very often.”

“That's because most seconds would have been ordered to cut their hair and keep it well groomed long, long, *long* ago,” the colonel returned strongly.

“That's probably true, Sir.”

“Listen, Carter, we've all had a tough year.”

“To be honest, Colonel, I think every year since we opened the Stargate has been a tough year.”

“Ya got me there, but my point is, if you need some time away from here to regroup or ...”

“Thank you, Sir, but I'm okay.  I think I just ... I'm not sure, Sir, but I'll handle it.”

“Soon.”

“Soon.  Um, I don't think I'll have time before the feast tomorrow.”

“Carter, just get it done soon.”

“You mean before we have visitors for the X-301 tests.”

“I knew you'd understand.”

“General Vanderkamp is a sticker for regulations,” Sam stated about one of the potential observers for the upcoming test drive.

“I'm hoping he stays home, but I think we owe it to Hammond not to risk it.”

Sam smiled in complete understanding.  She didn't want the major general to have to explain her appearance.  She respected and admired the man.

“You're right, Sir.  I'll ... de-scraggle as soon as I get a chance.”

“Thank you, Carter.”

Jack left the lab and headed for his lover's office, figuring Daniel would be finished with lunch and be back at work.

====

Entering Daniel's office, Jack quickly picked up a cylinder that looked like a gold bar.  He began examining it, turning it all around to get a good look.

“I wouldn't do that, if I were you,” Daniel called out.

“Why?  Looks like gold bar.”

“It's not gold.”

“What is it?”

“Excrement.”

“Wha...what?” the colonel responded, dropping the bar onto the rectangular worktable.  “What are you talking about, Daniel?”

The archaeologist chuckled and admitted, “Sometimes, Jack, you're so easy.”

With a groan, Jack replied, “It is a gold bar.”

“No, it's not gold.  It's ... actually, we don't know what it is ... yet, but it's all over Landervile.”

“Landervile?”

“Uh, yes, P3R-139.”

“SG-7's mission last week.”

“Yes,” Daniel affirmed.  “Whatever that is, it's spread all over the planet.  The inhabitants say it gives them strength.”

“Right,” Jack responded, not concerned about Landervile and whatever the gold bar really was.  “So, I think Carter's pulling my leg.”

“Oh, her hair.”

“She claims she's not rebelling.”

“You don't believe her?”

“Daniel, I think she wants to be noticed.”

“Noticed?  We ... notice her.”

“That's not what she wants.”  Jack paused before continuing.  “Sara always preferred short hair, but she let her hair grow out a couple of times, when she wanted my attention and didn't think she was getting it.  That was usually when I was involved with ... things I can't talk about that went on for a while.  I needed time to decompress.  She understood that, but a couple of times, it went on longer than it should have.  She got my attention with her hair.  Sounds silly, but it worked.  I always noticed.”

“I don't think I need to hear more specifics about that.”

“Wasn't planning on telling you,” Jack laughed as he inwardly recalled some very awesome times with his ex-wife.  “What I'm saying is BDUs aren't flattering and even though she denied it, I think she's just wanted to stand out and be noticed.”

“So, it's not the hair, it's noticing the hair, good or bad.”

“That's my guess.  Am I wrong?”

“Probably not, especially not since Martouf died.  She's, uh, trying hard to put that behind her, and we all know that's not easy, especially when she won't talk about it.”

“Anything we can do about that?”

“About not talking?  No.  About noticing her?  You just did.  It sounds silly, Jack, but in some situations, just knowing someone's watching is enough.  Maybe Sam just needed to know we were watching and noticing.”

After a moment of considering his lover's remarks, Jack nodded and then inquired, “Okay, any reason we can't get out of here on schedule?”

“No,” Daniel responded with a smile.

“Let's keep it that way.  I have plans for us tonight, Doctor Jackson.”

“I'll look forward to that, Colonel O'Neill.”

“Tomorrow, we feast on awesome food provided by the Enkarans, and tonight, Danny, we feast on each other.”

“I'm holding you to that.”

“Stay on schedule.”  Jack smiled and communicated privately, **I love you.**

**I love you, too.**

As he left the office, Jack whistled a happy tune.  He was happy because he was in love, madly and completely in love with his archaeologist.  Tonight the two would enjoy a romantic and lustful night together and that's all that mattered to him.  Knowing what this evening and others like it held made it easier to handle the day-to-day craziness of Stargate Command, especially trivial things like Sam's hair and Air Force regulations regarding appearance.  Tomorrow was another day and with a feast planned in SG-1's honor, they were sure nothing could go wrong.

For Jack and Daniel, the day couldn't end fast enough.  Passion was in the air and they were eager to build upon it in their own special way.  Life was good for the lovers and each prayed it would continue forever.  

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

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