What If

Author:  Orrymain
Category:  Slash, Missing Scene/Epilogue, Established Relationship
Pairing:  Jack/Daniel ... and it's all J/D
Rating:  PG-13
Season:  4 - November 30, 2000
Spoilers:  Chain Reaction (minor), 2010
Size:  19kb, ficlet
Written:  December 5-7,9-10,19,21, 2007
Summary:  When the klaxons blare and a bloodied note is tossed through the Stargate, SG-1 begin to wonder, what if.
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:  Tonya, Melissa, Linda, Claudia!

What If
by Orrymain

“Jack, why don't you get shot this time?” Daniel proposed as he sat alongside their teammates at the conference table in the briefing room.

“I'm the colonel,” Jack replied with a bit of a smirk, facing his lover from the opposite side of the table.

“All the more reason for you to be the one who gets shot,” Daniel argued.

“Why's that?” the older man asked curiously.

“You're the leader; you're supposed to be out front.”

“Abandoned by my team,” Jack said, looking away as he rolled his eyes.

“Only for the day,” the archaeologist quipped, a closed smile and bright eyes highlighting his facial features as he spoke.

“How's it going?” Major General George Hammond inquired as he walked into the briefing room from his office.

Standing, Sam answered, “There's a bit of a debate over who to shoot this time, Sir.”

“I was thinking Daniel,” Jack spoke as he stood as well.

“Doctor Jackson?” Hammond asked.

“Well, if the purpose of the training scenarios are to evaluate how the recruits respond in unique and unexpected circumstances, then it seems to me that it would be prudent to give them a prime target,” Daniel spoke.

“What he means, General, is that he wants that target to be on my back,” Jack said, looking at the major general and then giving his lover a look of reproach.

“Let Teal'c be the hero this time,” Daniel suggested.

The alien simply cocked his head and stared at the archaeologist.

“What?” Daniel questioned.

“I am a Jaffa,” Teal'c stated.

Senseing his lover didn't comprehend their friend's meaning, Jack translated, “I think he's saying he's already a hero.”

Teal'c nodded gratefully at his brother-in-arms.

“I don't mind being the hero,” Sam stated.  “It would be a pleasure to shoot you, Sir,” she said, looking over at her commanding officer.  As he glared, she stammered, “I, ah, well, I just meant, in the spirit of the scenario, of course.

“Of course,” Jack said lightly.

“Figure it out, people.  We do have other things to do today,” Hammond admonished lightly.

“Yes, Sir,” Jack acknowledged.  “Okay, Carter can shoot me.”

“I wanted to do that,” Daniel objected.

~Sometimes, they remind me of my grandchildren,~ Hammond thought as he shook his head and headed back towards his office, leaving SG-1 to continue finalizing the details of the latest training scenario.

“General,” Doctor Fraiser called out.  “Do you have a moment?”

“Of course.  My office,” Hammond invited, extending his right arm towards his office.

Before the two had a chance to move, however, the klaxons began to blare, causing Hammond, the SGC physician, and SG-1 to all head for the control room.

“Incoming traveler,” Sergeant Davis announced.

“Who is it?” Hammond asked.

“It's ... SG-1, Sir,” the confused technician responded.

“Hello,” Jack stated.  ~Ah, *we're* SG-1, and we're all present and accounted for.~

“How can that be?” Janet asked curiously.

“Let's find out,” Hammond replied.  “Defense teams stand by.  Open the iris.”

~Our incoming traveler is paper?~ Daniel queried internally, watching as a crumpled piece of paper passed through the event horizon and landed at the top of the metal ramp in the gate room.

Jack and Hammond exchanged a curious look, and then the colonel headed out of the control room, with Hammond and the others following.  As Jack entered the gate room, approaching the ramp, one of the Special Forces personnel stepped back, giving him room to pass.

As the colonel hurried up the ramp, Hammond ordered the Marines to, “Stand down.”  He stopped at the foot of the ramp, waiting to find out what the paper was.  Seeing Jack pick up the paper and read it, the general queried, “What is it?”

Jack didn't immediately answer the question.  Instead, he continued to stare at the paper with a slightly puzzled and very curious expression.  He raised his eyebrows as he began to walk down the ramp, his hands still holding the note that he was looking at.  He flipped it over a couple of times, examining it closely.

“Well?” the archaeologist questioned when Jack reached the end of the ramp and stopped.

Handing the note to his lover, Jack stated, “You tell me,” and then sat down on the railing on the right side of the metal ramp.

Daniel read the note out loud: “'Under no circumstances go to P4C-970.  Colonel Jack O'Neill.'”  He looked at Jack and noted, “That looks like your handwriting.”

“That is my handwriting; and it's my signature,” the colonel acknowledged, taking the note back from his lover.

“Though you sent no such note,” Teal'c pointed out.

“Nope,” Jack confirmed.

“Sir, may I?” Janet requested, taking the note from the colonel.  “That looks like blood, Sir,” she said, looking at the general.

“Have it analyzed,” Hammond ordered.

As Janet left the room, Jack asked, “General, wasn't 970 on our mission list?”

“It was; not anymore,” the bald-headed man answered.  “I'm not taking any chances.”  He turned and called out to the sergeant in the control room, “I want P4C-970 removed from the dialing computer immediately.  Dismissed,” he said and then exited the large room.

“I wonder why you sent it,” Sam spoke.  She quickly added, “I wonder when.”

“Yeah.  You gotta wonder,” Jack stated.

“Well, we know we can go back and forth in time,” Sam stated.  “1969,” she reminded, as if her colleagues might have forgotten and getting nods of agreement from Jack and Daniel.

“You believe the note to be from our future, MajorCarter,” Teal'c stated.

“It makes sense.”

“What if it's from an alternate reality?” Daniel asked.

“I don't think so, Daniel,” Sam replied.

“Why not?”

As Sam shrugged, Jack teased, “Woman's intuition,” and stood up, leading the way out of the gate room.

“Okay, so let's say it was the future,” Daniel suggested, gesturing with his right hand as he and Sam walked side-by-side in the corridor towards the steps that would take them up to the twenty-sixth level of the SGC where the briefing room was located.  “When?”

“Perhaps it was during our mission there,” Teal'c put forth.

“Just a few weeks from now?” Jack asked.  “What fun is that?”

“The note didn't sound like it was fun,” Daniel stated.

Reaching the top of the stairs, the colonel looked back at his teammates and said, “Especially if that was my blood.”

“Maybe you died a hero,” Daniel smirked with flapping eyelashes, thinking about their training scenario, the notes from which were still spread out on the conference table.

“Daniel, I'm beginning to think you have a hero complex,” Jack said as he sat down in his chair.

“No.  Just curious why the Jack O'Neill of the future sent through a note that was all crumpled like that and with your blood on it.”

“Maybe it's not my blood,” Jack said, cocking his head to the side.

Daniel refilled his coffee mug and held up the pot towards the others in case any of his teammates wanted a fresh cup.  Sam nodded, so he walked over and filled up her cup before returning the pot to its spot at the rear of the room and then sitting down in his seat.

“It could be mine,” Sam stated.

“Over my dead body,” Jack said in his 'I'm the colonel, so I'm the hero' tone of voice.

“Possibly,” Daniel acknowledged with a bob of his head.  “Or ... it could be mine.”

“Yours?” Jack asked, giving his lover an 'I don't think so' look.

“I can be a hero,” the archaeologist spoke.

“Yes, but ...” Jack began.

“Sure, you can, but we're military and ...” Sam began at the same time as Jack was speaking.

“I think I've shown that ...” Daniel began, joining in to form a three-way mouth fest that had the three all talking at the same time without really listening to what either of them was saying.

Teal'c listened with fascination, his head held high.  He never said a word as the verbal debate raged on, something which the others eventually became aware of.

“Teal'c, why aren't you arguing to be the hero?” Sam asked.

“I am a Jaffa,” the alien answered.

“Already a hero,” Daniel spoke dryly.

“Let's say ten years,” Jack said.

“What?” Daniel asked.

“What if I sent the note from ten years from now?” Jack asked.

“The real question is, why would you have to?” Daniel replied, looking at his soulmate.

“And why is there blood on it?”

“I'd say there's something about 970 that's not so nice,” Jack guessed.

“Obviously, the Stargate Program is still active,” Sam stated.

“Maybe,” Daniel replied.  “Or maybe Jack was just able to activate it.”

“Alone?” Sam asked.

Daniel looked at his lover and then Sam before replying, “Whatever the reason, we'd be together.”

“Why?”

“Why?” Daniel asked incredulously.

“No, Daniel, I mean ... why would the note need to be sent?” Sam asked.

“That's obvious: 970 is full of nasty bad guys,” Jack stated with a cock of his head while his fingers tapped lightly on the tabletop.

“Not necessarily,” the younger man refuted.

“Then what?” Jack asked, gesturing with his hands, his palms facing upward.

“I don't know.  Maybe ... maybe ...”

“Any time, Daniel,” Jack said smugly.

“Maybe we met somebody on 970 that we shouldn't have.”

“I wonder what we'll be like in ten years,” Sam stated, changing gears slightly.

“My knees will be completely shot,” Jack whined.

“The Jaffa will be free,” Teal'c stated confidently.

“You could be the leader of the new Jaffa government, Big Guy,” Jack spoke proudly, reaching over to pat the man's back.

“Master Bra'tac would make a fine leader for the Jaffa, and he has earned the right to lead us into our new world of freedom,” Teal'c spoke with unusual passion and resolve.

“Well, make sure he doesn't burn any bridges.”  Seeing Teal'c's stare and knowing he had no idea what Jack was talking about, the colonel elaborated, “It's politics.  You never burn a bridge in ... never mind.”

“Maybe I'll have long hair,” Sam interjected, causing all three males in the room to look at her.  She shrugged, saying, “I've always liked long hair.  I admit it's not practical in the field, but in ten years ...”

“Long hair?” Jack questioned, nodding his head as he tried to picture his second-in-command with long, blonde hair.  “Maybe you could wear it in a bun.”

“Maybe I'll keep it short,” Sam said, not liking that particular image.

“Maybe you should talk to your husband about that,” Jack put forth.

“Husband?” Sam asked, gulping.  “Oh, I don't think so, Sir.  I'm not sure I'm wife material.”

“Of course, you are, Sam,” the archaeologist stated supportively.

“You are a woman any Jaffa would be proud to marry,” Teal'c stated.

“Really?” Sam asked, almost disbelieving of the compliment.

“Yeah, Carter.  You could help Teal'c lead the new Jaffa nation,” Jack teased.

“Nothing personal, Teal'c, but I think I'd rather stay on Earth.”

Teal'c nodded in acceptance and looked at the archaeologist while asking, “What about you, DanielJackson?”

“I have *no* idea,” Daniel stated.

“You'll own a museum somewhere,” Jack teased.

“Maybe you could be a professor at a university,” Sam suggested.

“Oh, no, I think I ... I'm done with Academia, as far as ... teaching goes,” Daniel stated.  “Maybe the Stargate will be public in ten years.”

“It could happen,” Sam agreed.

“Not with the politicians we have in place now,” Jack disagreed with a groan. “They'd mess it up.”  Suddenly with a bit of vim and vigor, he raised his right hand, snapping his fingers as he said, “That's probably what happened.  The crappin' politicians got hold of the Stargate and made some alliance with the people on 970, and, bang, disaster.”

“Oh, gawd,” Sam suddenly laughed in despair.

“What?”

“What if Kinsey's the President?” Sam asked.

“We're not that stupid,” Jack said.  He looked at Daniel and asked, “Are we?”

“He is running for the office,” Daniel reminded.

“I'm trying to forget,” Jack sighed, having been present when Senator Robert Kinsey had recently announced to the media that he intended to run for the Presidency of the United States.

“Actually, it's your fault he's already announced his candidacy,” Daniel reminded.

“You would have preferred the alternative?” Jack questioned, knowing that the call he'd placed to the media, bringing them to Kinsey's house, had been the diversion he and Harry Maybourne had needed to safely leave the home after confronting the senator with his part in trying to gain more control of the SGC.

“Well, maybe then Sam would get to lead the team,” Daniel teased.

“Like anyone could lead you,” Jack countered.

Daniel just looked away as innocently as he could without replying to the comment.

“You know, Sir, whatever the reason for that note, I think it's clear you gave your life to send it here, to us, now, so it had to have been important,” Sam stated seriously.

“Carter, I wasn't alone,” Jack replied.

“O'Neill is correct.  We are a team,” Teal'c declared.

Nodding, Daniel said, “Whatever it was, we were all there.”

“And we probably all died,” Sam theorized.

“Cheery thought,” Jack spoke with a bit of sarcasm.  After a poignant pause, he added, “I think I'll buy a boat when I retire; go fishing.  He smiled as he supposed, “Live at the cabin.”  ~With Danny, of course.~

“What if the Stargate Program ended?” Daniel suddenly asked.  “What if we stopped going to other worlds?  Wha...what if a ... a friend became an enemy.”

“Aren't you being Mister Negative there, Dannyboy?” Jack questioned pointedly.

“No, I'm just wondering why you sent the note, and when,” Daniel answered.

“What if you suddenly started wearing designer clothing and wearing little rectangular glasses?” Jack asked.

Sam stuck her head out over the table and turned to stare at the archaeologist, trying to picture the look on her friend.

“Or contacts,” the blonde mused.

“Let's try and keep this realistic,” Daniel answered, primarily addressing his lover's remarks.  “I'm not exactly an Armani guy.”

“No, you're more of a plaid one,” Jack responded wryly.  **But as long as it's blue plaid, I don't really mind.**

**Gawd,** Daniel expressed, suddenly dropping his head to the top of the conference table.

“Daniel, are you okay?” Sam queried, not understanding the man's sudden slump.

“Oh, yeah, uh, sorry,” Daniel spoke with a smile.  “Pain in the neck,” he explained, rubbing his neck to give credence to his story, though his eyes were glued onto his partner's.

“Perhaps the Goa'uld have enslaved the people of P4C 970,” Teal'c put forth.

“I should have said more in my note,” Jack stated.

“No, Sir,” Sam stated.

“Jack, you couldn't,” Daniel said at the same time, glancing over at Sam.  “You couldn't tell us anything too specific without risking our timeline.”

“Daniel's correct.”

“Would've been nice to know who will win the Super Bowl this year.  That couldn't have hurt,” Jack griped.

“Yes, it could have,” Sam and Daniel said in perfect unison.

“Carter, stop stepping on my act,” Jack warned, reserving the 'speaking in unison' bit for he and his lover.

“Sorry, Sir,” the woman said with an apologetic smile.  Seriously, she said, “The truth is, we'll probably never know about the note.”

“We know enough,” Daniel stated.  He looked at each one of his teammates and said, “It doesn't matter whose blood was on it.  I ... I know we were together, and we did whatever we had to do to make things right.”

“I agree,” Sam said, nodding.

“As do I,” Teal'c added.

“Yeah, me, too,” Jack spoke in a soft voice.  “Okay, Kids, back to work.”

“Actually, Sir, I'm hungry,” Sam stated.

“As am I,” Teal'c added.

“Me, too,” Daniel said.

“Lunch!” Jack called out, standing.  “We'll finish this after we eat.”

Sam and Teal'c walked out of the briefing room, with Jack and Daniel lagging behind.

Softly, Daniel asked, “Jack, what if whenever you sent that note, things were different.”

“What things?” Jack asked.

“You know ... things,” Daniel said, trying not to say anything that could be overheard.

“Oh,” Jack responded.  “They have to be.  Ten years is a long time.  We have to be out of the dark ages by then.”

“It would be nice,” Daniel replied quietly.

**Danny, I love you, now, next year, and ten years from now ... and beyond: that won't change,** Jack communicated while they walked behind their teammates.

**I love you, too, Jack.**

“Hey,” Jack called out so that Sam and Teal'c could hear, too.  “What if 'The Simpsons' was canceled?”

“I think it will have to be, sooner or later ... Sir,” Sam responded nervously after seeing Jack's face tense with her comment.

“Homer will never be canceled,” Jack spoke confidently.

“It's okay, Jack.  Maybe they'll immortalize Homer in a theatrical movie,” Daniel said with a chuckle.

“Right, Daniel,” Jack responded with a sigh.  “I was just laying out some possibilities; but that's crazy; not that it wouldn't be fun, but it'll never happen, not in a million years.”

“Yeah,” Daniel agreed.

SG-1 continued on to the commissary, the rest of their day filled with training scenario outlines, a mission briefing, and more occasional ponderings over the strange note that had been tossed through the Stargate.  It was a mystery they wished they could solve, but feared they never would.  The one thing all four did agree on, was that whatever had happened, they'd been together.  SG-1, in some way, would always be united.  They were a team; more than that, they were a family.

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