DISCLAIMER: Stargate SG-1 and its characters are the property of MGM, Showtime, Gekko etc. No infringement intended.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Written as part of the 31 Aspects meme. Prompt from Geonn.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author
The iris closed and the troops wearily stomped down the ramp. Thick mud caked their boots and tiny splatters mingled with the camouflage to give their uniforms an authentic look. The members of SG-1 skulked at the back of the group, their faces hidden and voices silent, as if they could fade into the background.
Janet leaned forward and peered down at the assembled group. None of them looked injured, which was always a bonus, but she couldn't rule out viral infections and other parasites. The crowd's demeanour certainly left much to be desired and she began to wonder if the four day mission had produced unforeseen psychological affects.
Teal'c was the first member of SG-1 to emerge from the group, his muscular form easily recognisable even amongst the sea of camouflage. His dark features were obscured by a thin layer of red clay, the circles around his eyes giving the only indication of his true colouring. He looked like a clay statue come to life.
An aborted laugh wrestled Janet's attention away from Teal'c and toward the figure loitering at his shoulder. It took her a moment to associate the sullen and silent figure with that of the normally verbose Jack O'Neill but, once she had, a smile lit her face and left her fighting against the urge to laugh.
By the time Janet recovered, General Hammond had descended from the control booth and was quietly speaking with Jack O'Neill. His back was to her but Janet was convinced he was sporting a barely restrained smile.
Within minutes the troops had dispersed and Janet go her first good look at the final two members of SG-1. Daniel looked, somewhat, normal. His clothes were no less soiled than his companions' but the clay that had reduced Jack to a silent brick had left Daniel as dazed and introspective as ever, as if he'd just returned from a particularly trying dig and couldn't wait to get into his lab and start translating.
Sam was the final figure to emerge; her blonde hair clogged with red and a white-toothed grin highlighting her darkened face. A small trickle of black liquid worked its way down her throat, smeared into the clay by an impatient hand. Even from twenty feet away Janet knew that it was blood.
Sam squirmed as she sat on the gurney, her clothes stuck to both her body and the thin paper sheet covering the nylon. All the other teams and the remainder of SG-1 had been allowed to shower and change into their BDUs before being subjected to their post-mission physical. Sam hadn't been so lucky.
"It's just a scratch," she reassured her friend.
Janet used a sodden sponge to gently wipe away the blood-saturated mud. The thick substance danced and smeared before finally revealing the pale skin beneath. Sam was right: it was just a scratch, but that didn't mean it wouldn't become infected.
"I need you to slip off your clothes and jump in the shower."
A clay eyebrow rose and Sam's pearly white teeth made another appearance. She would never normally allow herself the luxury of innuendo but there was something liberating about being covered in mud: a camouflage against knowing eyes.
"Or I could always give you a sponge bath?"
Sam squirmed, the squelch of clay intruding on her embarrassment and prompting her eyes to drop.
"Why don't you join me?"
Janet cocked her head to the side, a smile on her face. "In a sponge bath?"
"In the shower," Sam mumbled.
Janet picked up her clipboard and motioned Sam towards the tiny en-suite shower that was nestled in the corner of the office. The offhand motion reassured Sam that her slip had either been overlooked or dismissed out of hand.
Sam discarded her jacket and quickly began to disrobe, her mud-encrusted clothes falling in a heap at the entrance to the shower room; her pale body disappeared into the stall and the curtains swished closed in her wake.
The water crashed against Sam's face and fought to dislodge the clay from her skin. The thick, red mess proved a tenacious opponent and only reluctantly released its hold on Sam's body; the brown sludge grudgingly circled the drain before disappearing forever amidst a crowning of froth.
The curtains parted. "You've missed a bit."
"Jan-et?" Sam's voice hitched. "Wha'?"
"It's rude to ignore an invitation," Janet mumbled as she stepped into the stall and gently placed her hands on the curve of Sam's back. "You did invite me, didn't you?"
Sam couldn't speak, her stomach was in knots and all she could think about were the hands slowly caressing her skin. She'd rehearsed this moment a thousand times but not once had this particular scenario even entered her mind.
"I -" Sam turned, her eyes wide and mind blank. "- invited you?"
Janet's gaze travelled down the length of Sam's body, the not unfamiliar sight taking on a whole new meaning as she discarded her physician's detachment and looked with a lover's appreciation.
"You're beautiful," Janet whispered.
Shaking her head in disagreement, Sam allowed her fingers to slowly trace the contours of Janet's face, the sun-tanned skin velvety soft and slick from the shower.
"I've dreamt -"
Janet consumed the words with a kiss. Their bodies pressed together in a slippery dance of discovery; moans of delight wrought from hungry lips, kisses were exchanged and bodies quivered with both need and release.
The remnants of foreign soil forgotten as they lost themselves in each other.
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