Taking Turns
by Suz suzvoy@tesco.net

Disclaimer - MGM/Gekko/Double Secret own them.

These last four days have been so unbelievably busy you wouldn’t believe it; I’ve had no time to stop and think about the more in-depth stories. However, I did have a spare thirty minutes today where I typed this baby out...Sam’s turn at confessing, in D&C.


Anise began to stand, obviously intending to free the Colonel personally.

Sam stepped in front of her; this was something she was most definitely doing herself. A little unsure but with hands that were surprisingly steady, she first pulled the head strap up and off of his head, sending that typically unruly hair into a greater variety of directions.

Even now, in the middle of these circumstances, she almost smiled.

Leaning across his body, she deftly freed his left hand – well aware that he was staring at her neck in an attempt not to stare at anything else – and then she quickly leant back and began working on his right hand. That, too, was done in mere moments, and then she...

Didn’t move.

She didn’t move. She honestly didn’t know if it was subconsciously intentional (and wasn’t that an oxymoron, anyway?), but she undid the strap around his wrist, shifted her right hand until it was pressed against the armrest, and didn’t move.

Personal space dictated that she should have, at least, leant away a few inches.

She didn’t.

Placing his hands on the armrests for support, the Colonel pushed himself up to his feet. Quickly stepping away he cleared his throat, kept his head bowed, murmured her name – "Carter," – and gestured towards the chair.

It was the first word that had been spoken since she’d given the order for her own re-testing.

With her hand still clamped firmly onto the armrest she simply swivelled to her left, taking a few steps backwards. Feeling the seat of the chair make contact with the back of her knees, she quietly sat down.

He went for the restraints in the same order she did. Grabbing the head strap he pulled it down over her head, and began tightening so it would fit snugly. Before it did – and again, this was something she would never be sure of – it felt like a rogue finger brushed a strand of hair behind her ear.

Sam realised that staring at the neck really was a very good idea.

With the head strap secure, he quickly tightened the strap around her left wrist, before moving to her right. Securing it immediately, his hand brushed against hers; smooth, rough, unbelievably gentle.

Feigning difficulty with the strap he kept his head lowered, but his eyes slid up until his gaze reached her face, the attention dragging her own gaze away from his neck.

Nodding minutely, he grasped the back of her hand and pulled its death grip from the armrest. He might as well have been speaking for how subtle it was:

"You don’t have to do that. This isn’t the end of the world."

Maybe not. But it was definitely close.

Giving the strap a good yank for effect, he stood up straight and immediately moved until he was matching her earlier position; behind Anise, looking vaguely uncomfortable.

She hadn’t realised how intimidating this perspective was. When she’d been tested before she hadn’t been in the least bit worried. As far as she’d been concerned, she’d had nothing to fear.

Now...knowing what she knew, admitting what she knew, facing down the Colonel and Anise as she was about to ask her exactly what she’d been feeling when *that* happened...

He’d managed it. So could she.

It was almost easy to forget that Janet and Teal’c were there in the background, silently observing. Sam made a point of looking at them. Janet nodded once with a tight, almost invisible smile, and Teal’c wore the expression of a man who hadn’t been surprised by anything he’d heard in the last few minutes.

The infuriating expression that proved they’d failed spectacularly at keeping it hidden.

Exhaling, Sam focused her attention on the orange light she was supposed to be looking at. Anise began talking, leading Sam up the moment when she’d woken up on the opposite side of the force shield.

She asked the question. She asked how she felt when he wouldn’t leave her. She looked at him, then Teal’c, then Janet, then back at the orange light. Surrounded by family and friends, about to admit to something that she shouldn’t, about to voice something that shouldn’t even exist...

He was standing there, rocking on the balls of his feet, quietly confident that it was only him who had something to worry about.

Having no idea.

This would change nothing. What she was about to say would change absolutely nothing, but he’d been right in one way. This didn’t feel like the end of the world.

This felt like finally facing up to the world.

Blinking, concentrating on the flashing orange light, Sam Carter began to speak.


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