Squabble

Author:  Orrymain
Category:  Slash, Drama, Romance, Established Relationship
Pairing:  Jack/Daniel ... and it's all J/D
Rating:  PG-13
Season:  6 - April 17, 2002
Spoilers:  None
Size:  18kb, ficlet
Written:  November 5-9, 2006  Revised for consistency:  February 14,17, 2007  Revised for timeline:  March 25, May 1, 2008
Summary:  Jack's Mr. Jealousy exacerbates a small squabble with his lover.  Will rationality win, or will the Air Force colonel face a very cold night?
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?~
3) Thanks to my betas who always make my fics better:  Linda, Claudia, Jodi, QuinGem!

Squabble
by Orrymain

“Looking forward to it,” Daniel spoke over the phone, which he had scrunched between his right ear and shoulder, while he simultaneously tried to find the passage he was looking for in his reference book.  “Okay, see you then.  Bye.”

The archaeologist let the phone fall to the desktop as he continued to flip through the pages.

“Come on!” Daniel spoke in exasperation, unable to find what he wanted.

“Problems?” Jack asked as he walked into Daniel's SGC corner office, standing a couple of feet away from his lover's desk.

“No,” the younger man sighed, slamming the book shut and finally putting the phone back onto the cradle.  “I was looking for something, but couldn't find it.  What are you doing here?” he asked a bit gruffly.

“Wake up on the wrong side of the bed, did we?” Jack asked a bit pointedly.

“Yes, and I was *alone*,” Daniel groused.  He hadn't been happy when he'd awoken at 7 a.m. to find his soulmate had already gotten up and had, in fact, left the apartment where the two had spent the night.  ~I keep telling him I don't like that.~

“Daniel,” Jack began, walking two steps forward and twisting around to make sure no one was lurking near the open doorways.  “I left you a note.”

“Thanks.  That was so nice of you,” Daniel snapped.  Waking up alone was one of his pet peeves that stemmed from his insecurities over years of abandonment as a foster child.  ~Maybe he'll finally get that after today.~

“I told you.  I forgot my ...”

“You'd forget your brain if it wasn't in your head, already attached to the rest of your body,” Daniel snarked back, standing up, brushing by his lover, and going to one of his bookshelves.

“You're in good form,” Jack replied snarkily at his lover's comments as he turned around, his left hand in his pocket, and his right hand picking up a paperweight and fidgeting with it.

Daniel snorted, “Like you'd know.”

Jack scowled as he looked over at his angry lover.  Leaving early hadn't been his original intention, but after they had gone to sleep, he had realized that he had left his favorite baseball cap at home.  It was his current 'good luck' cap, and he wanted it for SG-1's recon this afternoon.  Not wanting to disturb his already sleep-deprived lover, he woke up early, left Daniel a note, and covertly left the apartment.  Then he swung by home to get the cap before making it back to the Mountain just in time for their mission briefing at 0800 hours.

“Yes, I know, and I *intend* to know it again to...night,” Jack spoke, frowning down at what had just snagged his attention.  He put down the paperweight, instead picking up the envelope that now held his full attention.  ~Paul?  PAUL DAVIS?~  In a huff, Jack tossed it down, then stormed from one side of the office to the other, shutting the doors and locking them.

“Jack, what are you doing?” Daniel queried, looking up from the book he had been looking through in his quest to find the elusive information he'd been seeking.  “Jack?”

The colonel said nothing as he turned off the security camera, walked to the desk, and picked up the festively decorated envelope.  With hand-drawn balloons and a smiley face after the recipient's name, the item emanated warmth and caring.  Jack held the object out towards the other man, his entire demeanor accusatory.  

“Okay.  You've got me,” Daniel remarked sarcastically.  “It's an envelope.”

“Paul?” Mr. Jealousy growled, referring to the name embossed at the center of the envelope, complete with a wavy line beneath it.


Daniel rolled his eyes, slammed the book shut, and walked back to his desk, yanking the envelope from his lover as he passed.

“Get a grip, Jack,” the archaeologist advised as he sat down, lying the thick book down and placing the blue envelope on top of it.

“What is *that*?” the colonel barked.

Daniel closed his eyes, silently counting to ten as a way of not exploding at his green-eyed soulmate.

“DANIEL!”

“Jack, stop shouting and jumping to conclusions!” the younger man requested.  He paused for just a few moments before explaining, “Friday is Paul's birthday, and he's going to be in town for the weekend, so tomorrow we're having lunch and ...”

“*Lunch*?” Jack questioned demandingly, his ire having doubled in all of two seconds.

“Jack, calm down!” Daniel ordered as he crossed his arms over his chest.

“I'll calm down when you explain *that*,” Jack seethed, pointing at the envelope.

“It's a card,” the archaeologist answered flatly.

“I can see that, Daniel.  I want to know why you are giving that traitor a card!” Jack demanded.

“First of all, Paul isn't a traitor.”

“He's supposed to be a brother-in-arms, Daniel.  He's cheating!” the colonel accused.

“Cheating?” Daniel mused incredulously.

“We're in the service, and he should honor that,” Jack spoke.

“Putting aside for just a moment that you're crazy, Paul isn't cheating on you or anyone.  He doesn't know about us, Jack, and will you calm down?  Your neck veins are bulging,” the younger man pointed out.  “Brother-in-arms,” he snorted.  “You never talk like that.”

“Daniel, what's this balloon-infested card for?” Jack inquired harshly, his jealousy completely controlling his irate mind.

“I already told you.  Paul's birthday is on Friday, and he's going to be in town for a couple of days, so, yes, we're having lunch tomorrow, and, you, Colonel, are going to behave.”

“I don't *want* to behave,” Jack irrationally replied.

“He's a grown up,” Daniel muttered about his life partner, looking down at his desk.  “I know he is.  He's even older than me ... in chronological years, anyway.”

“Daniel!”

“What?”

“Why are you giving the captain a card?” Jack questioned harshly.

“Don't start that,” Daniel responded.  “Paul is a major, and he's staying a major.”

“Not if I have anything to say about it,” Jack spat, his hands gripping the edge of the desk as he leaned forward aggressively.

“For the proverbial fifth time, Colonel, it's just a lunch.  Paul's a friend, and ...”

“I'll kill him!” Mr. Jealousy threatened.  “He's after you, and *you* know it!” he accused, his right arm jutting outward, pointing at the younger man for a quick second.

“Gawd!” Daniel exclaimed, closing his eyes as he let his head fall backwards.

“You are *not* having lunch with that ... that ...”

“Friend?” Daniel challenged, giving his lover a tiny nod.  “Really?  Because you say so?”

“*Yes*!  I forbid it, Daniel,” Jack ordered, sounding very much like Daniel's owner instead of his lover.
 
Standing up again, Daniel leaned over the desk slightly, eyes flashing, and said, “I'll have lunch with anyone I want to, Jack, and I want to have lunch with Paul.”

“He's a homewrecker, breaking up happy homes!”

“Really?  Whose home is he wrecking?” Daniel questioned.

“Ours, if he gets his way.  I remember how he touched you when my back was turned,” Jack accused.

“I don't believe this,” Daniel sighed, shaking his head.  “You were about to be blown up into a million pieces, Jack.  He knew we were friends, and he was trying to comfort me.”

“IN FRONT OF THE ENTIRE BASE?”

“You've lost your mind, Jack.  It wasn't on base, if you recall, and you weren't there to see anything,” Daniel reminded.

“I have my sources,” the colonel refuted smugly.

“Yes, I know, and Paul paid the price for that already,” the archaeologist scolded.

“He got transferred, Daniel.  Air Force personnel get transferred every day,” Jack retaliated.

“Not because of a hissy fit thrown by a child in adult's clothing!” Daniel argued, his calm demeanor all-but-gone at this point.

Jack hunched further over the desk, as did his lover.  The two men were glaring at each other, their faces close together.

Finally, in a forced nonchalant tone, the older man asked, “Are you saying I'm a child, Daniel?”

“Sometimes.”

“Sometimes,” Jack repeated.  “And you know this *how*?”

“I think it's the temper tantrums,” Daniel answered, nodding at the same time.

“How old is he?”

“He's ...” Daniel began, pausing at the sound of the ringing phone, then snatching it up while still glaring at his lover.  “Hello ... uh, okay ... sure ... no, no problem.”

“Who was that?” Jack asked, as soon as the phone was back in the cradle.

“None of your business, Jack.”

“*It was him*!” the colonel accused boisterously.

“Jack, calm down,” Daniel requested with a sigh.  “Look, do you really want to fight over Paul?”

“He wants your body,” Jack replied a bit childishly.

“Well, if he wants it, he's out of luck,” the younger man stated quietly.  “It doesn't belong to him, and I have no intention of giving it to him, either.”

“Danny ...”

“Jack, you *have* to get over this.  I ... Listen, I'm sorry because I ... well, when you walked in here, I ...”

“Wasn't in a good mood?” Jack guessed.

“And do you know why?”

“Because I didn't wake you up,” the older man answered.

“Well, yes, but ... not entirely,” Daniel spoke in a near whisper.  “Jack, I ... everyday, I ...” he stammered, trying to say words that were sometimes surprisingly difficult.  Taking a deep breath, he moved to stand within a foot of his soulmate and said, “I count on you.  There are ... things that make me think, sometimes, that ... maybe the future won't be as bad as ...”  He blinked, smiling softly when the older man reached out to caress his cheek.  “Our being together gives me hope.  Waking up with you makes me feel like ... like my life has some stability.  I don't like waking up alone.”

“It reminds you of the bad times,” Jack surmised.

“Yes, so I was upset.  Paul's a friend, Jack, not my lover.  You -- you're my friend *and* my lover, and that's how I want it.  How about you?” the archaeologist questioned.

“I'm sorry, Danny.  I guess I felt a little guilty,” Jack confessed.  He put his hands on his lover's upper arms and took a step closer.  “I wanted my lucky cap, and the only way to get it was to leave.  I just knew you didn't get much sleep last night, and I didn't want to wake you.”

“I know,” Daniel admitted.  “But next time, please, let me know you're going, no matter how much sleep I've gotten, or not gotten.  And Jack, about Paul ...”

“He makes my blood boil, Daniel.  I can't help it,” Jack replied.

“Yes, you can.  You just need to remember this,” the younger man said, demonstrating his comments with a passionate kiss.  “Lunch is sharing a meal.  Giving someone a card is common courtesy for people you like and respect.  Maybe you don't like him, Jack, but you know Paul does his best to keep the Pentagon off our backs.  For the record, he suggested dinner first, since lunch has to be quick because of his schedule.  *I* said 'no', because my nights belong to you, and being with you is much more important to me than giving Paul a card.  Do you understand?”

“Yeah, I'm a little slow on the uptake, Danny, but I do get it,” Jack said softly.

“I hope so.”

“I love you, Danny.”

“I love you, too.  Uh ... how about you show me,” the younger man requested with a smile.

The lovers kissed for several minutes, then just held each other, their hands warming each other's backs and, occasionally, reaching down to lovingly caress each other's buttocks.

“Okay, lunch,” Jack stated more firmly, as if just coming to terms with his partner's plans for the next day.

“And then us,” Daniel affirmed, kissing his lover one more time.  “Just us.”

Jack chuckled as the two parted physically, preparing to return to a more professional mindset as they continued with their workdays.

“So, ... squabble over?” Jack asked.

Daniel chuckled, “Squabble over.”

“Our place or yours?” the older man asked about their plans for that night.

The archaeologist smiled.  Jack had called his country-style home 'ours' for years, something that inwardly made Daniel happy.  He truly wished he could say the word without reservation, leaving behind those fears that the relationship would end one day.

~No, we're forever.  We are.  I know we are,~ Daniel told himself firmly.  “Ours,” he answered, receiving a huge grin from Jack in response.

Still grinning, Jack turned the security equipment back on and opened the doors, pausing for just a moment to give a passerby an intimidating look when the airman looked at him quizzically.  The smile back on his face, the colonel glanced at Daniel and nodded.

“Don't forget -- mission's at 1330,” Jack spoke.  “Later.”

“Later,” Daniel responded, feeling warm inside.

Sitting back down at his desk, the archaeologist picked up the envelope and studied it for a moment.  With a tiny shake of his head, he opened it and removed the card.  Then he reached inside one of his desk drawers and pulled out another envelope, this one white and without any decoration.  He took the card and put it in the new envelope, sealing it and writing a simple 'Paul' on the front.  With a sly smile on his face, Daniel crumbled up the balloon-adorned envelope and threw it into the waste basket.

Thinking about his lover, Daniel thought, ~Sorry, Babe, but all's fair in love and war!~

Shrugging, the conniving scholar returned to his work, having achieved his desired goal -- one contrite Jack O'Neill and what he was sure would be one great round of make-up sex that night.

“Oh!” Daniel exclaimed, quickly getting up and heading for Sam's lab.  Chuckling, the scientist made his way through the corridors, having almost forgotten her phone call of a few minutes ago requesting his assistance.  ~An occasional squabble is good for ... me,~ he laughed as he walked into the elevator.  ~I'll tell Jack the truth -- one day,~ he thought as he left the planned squabble behind and ventured forth with the day's schedule.

Life was good for the archaeologist and for the unsuspecting colonel of his heart, and tonight would be even better!

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