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ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: 10x15 Bounty
Sam found a vacant stool in the curve of the bar, her back to the main room and facing a wall of liquor. She motioned to the bartender for a glass of beer, house brand would do, and tried to ignore all the geek groupies hanging around. There seemed to be three hot women for every scientist at the conference, all of them hanging from their designated Poindexter like he was Brad Pitt. Sam was happy some people still appreciated brains in the Paris Hilton era, but would it hurt for one of them to throw some attention her way?
Sure, there were male groupies, but most of them weren't exactly her type. She remembered the time she brought Pete to the convention and he'd mock-hung himself with his tie as soon as he got back to the hotel room. "I'm sorry, hon," he'd said as he undid his tie, "but I don't know how you deal with places like this."
She smiled her thanks to the bartender as he placed a glass in front of her. "Here's how," she muttered as she took a sip.
"You've got that right."
She glanced to her right. The woman sitting next to her was turned on her stool, facing the rest of the room. Her elbows were hooked on the bar rail. She had long black hair, bright blue eyes and a sardonic smile played on her lips as she scanned the bar. Sam glanced down at the lapel of the woman's jacket. "Guest - Dr. Lauren Landon."
Lauren saw she had Sam's attention and gestured at the rest of the room. "I assume you're here to escape the crush of your adoring public? I gave a presentation of a defense shield generator and, as soon as I left the stage, I was swamped. You'd think I was offering a fool-proof acne eliminator."
Sam smiled politely. "Defense shield generator, huh?"
"I know. I admit, I watched Star Trek as a kid. We have communicators and phasers, why not shields?"
Sam nodded. She always felt bad when conversations veered this way. "Hi, I've dedicated my life to perfecting a science that you could give us any time you wanted. I can't wait until you swoop down and gather all the credit and render all of my research moot." Another reason to hide out in the bar at these conferences.
"Colonel Carter?" Landon asked. "Did I... oh, God, you're not working on a shield generator, are you?"
"No," Sam said. Not this month... "No, uh... good luck with your research."
"What are you presenting?"
"Mm, talk about Star Trek."
Sam laughed. "Yeah, well..."
"I have to admit, I probably would've poured my drink over your head if you said you were researching shield technology. You're Colonel Samantha Carter! You, uh... well. One of my colleagues was working on holographic technology. When he heard you were presenting research on the same thing this weekend, he pretty much shut down shop."
She winced. "I'm sorry to hear that."
"Eh, what are you gonna do? Stop being a genius?"
Sam twirled the straw in her drink. She was smart enough on her own, damn it. Presenting dumbed-down technology that the Asgard and Ancients had perfected and receiving praise for it made her feel like a fraud. She finished her drink and fished for her wallet. "Well, sorry to drink and run..."
"No, please," Landon said. "I'm begging you. As long as we're together, the pocket protector set is staying well clear of me. And you. So... you know, mutually beneficial that we stay together."
Sam hesitated but then shrugged and slipped off her stool. "Why not. Come on."
Some people had to learn the hard way. Some people assumed blonde, plus woman, plus a badge for the technology conference equaled easy mark. When Sam walked away from the pool table, fifty dollars richer and just a little buzzed with the thrill of beating three guys at their own game, she and Lauren had already been together four hours. Sam returned to her stool and handed Lauren a twenty.
"What's this for?" Lauren asked.
"So you'll remember me fondly when I introduce flawless shield technology two weeks before you finish your research."
Lauren laughed. "I'll need more than twenty bucks."
"I'll buy you a drink, too."
"Ten years of research, twenty bucks and a beer. Yeah, it about evens out."
They laughed and Sam checked her watch. "Damn. I have to be up at seven tomorrow..."
"I thought your presentation wasn't until noon?"
"I'm going to lend a hand to Dr. Lee. Bill Lee?"
She nodded. "Laser weapons. Like I said... Star Trek is the modern scientist's cheat sheet."
Sam laughed and tapped her glass against Lauren's.
"So, you and Lee. I wouldn't have pictured..."
"Oh, no," Sam said. "God no. No offense to him, but... not exactly my type."
Lauren smiled. "I'm glad to hear that."
"Why?" Sam said. "R'you planning on fixing me up with someone?"
Lauren laughed and looked at Sam for a moment. She waved off the bartender and said, "Let's get you out of here, Colonel."
Sam finished her beer and followed Lauren to the door. The hotel was a block away, so they hadn't bothered to take either of their cars. Just as they were leaving the parking lot, the bar door slammed open and a loud voice called out to them. Sam turned and saw one of the men she'd hustled storming after them. He was completely bald, sleeves of his shirt stretched tight across oversized biceps. "Aw, man," she sighed.
The man pointed a finger at her and took up a spread-legged stance in front of her. "I don't like being made fun of."
"Then stop playing pool," Sam said. "Quick."
"I want my money back."
Lauren began fumbling in her purse for the twenty Sam had given her. Sam, on the other hand, said, "No. Good night. Maybe next time you'll think before spending your Rogaine money."
"Sam," Lauren said softly.
"Listen to your friend, Sam," the man said.
Sam shook her head and looked at Lauren. "Put your money away." She hooked her hand around Lauren's elbow and turned to walk back to the hotel.
The man dropped his hand on Sam's shoulder and squeezed. "I was talking to you, bitch."
Sam, immediately sober, reached up and slipped her fingers between his thumb and forefinger. She dropped her body away from him as she pinched the web of flesh there. As soon as his hand was off of her, she twisted and pinned the man's arm behind his back. He howled in pain as his shoulder popped. "You were talking to me. Now you're done. I thought we were clear on that."
"Y-yeah," he groaned. "We're clear, real clear..."
"I let you go, you run back into the bar. My friend and I won't contradict whatever you tell them happened to your shoulder. I think that's worth fifty bucks. If you don't agree, I could walk you back in there like this..."
"No, no," he said. "We got a deal. Let me go!"
Sam smiled. "Let me go..."
He growled. "Please. Ma'am."
Sam released his hand and stepped back. "Have a nice night. Hope your luck at the pool table improves."
They waited until he'd hurried back into the bar before they turned and continued to the hotel. Lauren hooked her hand around Sam's elbow and looked back at the bar door. No sign of Baldy or his friends. She smiled and said, "My hero."
There were still a few stragglers hanging out in the lobby. Sam waved to a couple of scientists she recognized and walked with Lauren to the elevator. She pressed three for her floor and then let her finger hover over the keypad. "What floor?"
"I'll just get off on three," Lauren said. "Walk you to your door. Just in case someone tries to rough you up again."
Sam smiled and let the doors close. "You'll protect me?"
Sam leaned against the wall and rubbed the back of her neck. She looked at Lauren, innocent, attractive, young... again, she felt a stab of regret. Pretty soon, the IOA would declassify some shield technology. When that happened, she or Dr. Lee or Felger would be back at this conference and demonstrate technology light years ahead of whatever Lauren Landon had come up with.
"Lauren," she said.
The elevator doors opened and Sam sighed. There was nothing she could say that wouldn't compromise the Stargate program. "Nothing. Well? Aren't you my escort?"
"Right." Lauren stepped out into the corridor, made a show of looking both ways, and then motioned that it was safe for Sam to exit. They walked together down the hall and Sam pulled out her key card. "This is me; 314."
"Three plus one equals four," Lauren said. "I'm in four minus three. That's kind of cool."
Sam laughed. "I think you're drunk."
"I think you're right," Lauren said.
"Are you sure you're okay to get back to your room?"
"Three floors," she said. She paused and said, "Sam, I... think I know what you were going to say back in the elevator."
Sam winced. "Oh?"
"Yeah," Lauren said. She stepped forward and kissed Sam's lips. Sam was too shocked to reciprocate, her hands at her sides and her eyes wide open. When Lauren pulled back, she sucked her bottom lip and said, "I've been wanting to kiss you good-night since I saw you in the bar."
Sam raised her hand to her bottom lip and said, "Lauren, I... I-I'm not... I thought we were just hanging out."
Lauren's face fell. "Oh. You're not..."
"No," Sam said. "No, I'm... I'm sorry."
Lauren covered her eyes with her hand and smiled. "God. I feel like... such an idiot. I'm so sorry, Sam."
Sam shook her head. "Don't worry about it."
"I'll see you tomorrow... at your presentation?"
"Yeah. Stop by and... say hello."
"I will. Sorry again about the, uh..."
"Don't even worry about it," Sam said.
Sam watched Lauren slink back to the elevator and ran her card through the door. When she looked again, Lauren was gone. She pushed open the door to her room, slipped inside and kicked off her shoes. She didn't bother turning on the light and moved toward the bed. She sat on the edge of the mattress and stared at the dark square of her window.
Lauren was someone she'd had a nice time with, someone she found attractive and who was interested in her. They were at a conference, thousands of miles from anyone she knew (other than Dr. Lee, of course). She had once confided to Janet that it had always been her fantasy to be with another woman, but she'd never had the courage to approach anyone.
Well, now someone had approached her. It could be a no strings attached, one-time only, mostly anonymous night of sex. She picked up her shoes and walked quickly to the door.
Her hands shook the entire way up. Lauren had said her room was "four minus three," so Sam knocked on 431. She waited for an answer and then kicked herself. What if Lauren had gone down to the bar and picked up another woman? God, if she was interrupting...
The door opened and Lauren blinked at her from the darkness of her hotel room. She was wearing an oversized t-shirt, her legs and feet bare. Her hair was mussed from the pillow, but she didn't seem bleary in a 'just-woke-up' way. "Sam," she said. "What are you doing here?"
Sam blushed. "I... reconsidered."
Lauren blinked. "Really?"
Sam nodded and looked down the hallway. "Can I..."
"Oh, yeah, come in. Please."
Sam brushed by Lauren and stepped into the room. It was identical to her room, but reversed since it was on the opposite side of the building. There was a bedside lamp on and the sheets were pulled back. "Oh, God. I did wake you..."
"No, you didn't," Lauren said as she returned to the main room. "You saw me five minutes ago."
Sam smiled. "Right..."
"Are you sure about this, Sam? I would hate for you to wake up in the morning and realize this was a drunken mistake..."
"I'm sober enough to realize what I'm doing," Sam assured her.
"Have you ever..."
"No," Sam said. "Well..." She blushed and walked across the room. She chuckled and rubbed the back of her neck. "A friend of mine... Janet... we were kind of..."
Lauren said, "Kind of?"
"Intimate," Sam said. "We never slept together, never even kissed. But every now and then we would..."
Sam exhaled a shaky breath. "Yeah."
"I've done that," Lauren said. She walked back to the bed and pushed the covers back. She sat down and leaned against the headboard. "It can be incredibly hot. Did you do it together in the same room or just call one another on the phone?"
Sam took a seat in the armchair. "Both. It started on the phone. I called her late one night and we were talking. And before long, there were these... pauses in the conversation. And her breathing changed. It turned me on. Before long, we were telling each other what we were doing."
Lauren's hands had moved to the inside of her thighs and she said, "Sam?"
"Remember when I said you hadn't woken me up...?"
Sam nodded, then looked down at Lauren's lap. "Oh," she whispered.
"Go on," Lauren said. "How did your relationship with Janet escalate?"
"It was a... weekend away. At the lake." Sam undid her belt and slid down in the chair. She bit her bottom lip and toyed with the waistband of her trousers. "We were staying down the hall from one another, so it didn't really make sense to call each other. She came into my room and she was wearing this... little silk nightie. God, she looked good..."
Lauren closed her eyes and pressed her hand between her legs.
"She kissed my cheek and walked across the room. Sat down, faced me, and spread her legs. It was the first time I'd ever seen her... h-her..." She swallowed. "So I pushed back the blankets and I was just wearing boxer shorts..."
Sam undid the button on her pants and slipped her fingers inside.
"Did you ever take it further?"
Sam shook her head. "I was scared. Scared of being... labeled." She pulled her hand free and lifted her hips. She shimmied her pants down her thighs and cupped herself through her panties. "I was already madly in lust with her. I think if we'd gone further, I would have... I think it would've been bad..."
"You would have fallen in love," Lauren said.
Sam nodded. She rested her head on the back of the chair and finally pushed aside her underwear. She circled herself with her fingertip and sighed. She opened her eyes and focused on Lauren. She had one foot planted on the blankets, the other dangling over the side of the bed. She had pulled up her nightshirt to reveal she wasn't wearing anything underneath. The sight of her thick, dark pubic hair shot Sam back in time...
"It's okay," Janet whispered, her features blurred by shadows and moonlight. "I want you to look. Look at me, Sam..."
"She'd talk to me," Sam said. "Tell me to look at her. Tell me how good it felt..."
"Were you always this far apart?"
"Will you come closer for me?" Lauren asked. Her voice was plaintive, her eyes opening to stare an entreaty to Sam.
Sam hesitated only briefly. She stood, her pants sliding down to the floor as she walked to the bed. She stopped and kicked off the pants before she sat on the opposite side of the bed. Lauren looked over at her and Sam pushed her panties down. Lauren moaned and said, "I was hoping for this... when I met you in the bar..."
"Really?" Sam said.
"Well," Lauren smiled. "Maybe not... exactly this."
Sam smiled. She cupped herself with her hand and pressed her middle finger against her pussy lips. She moaned and leaned towards Lauren. "I want..."
Lauren turned her head and lightly brushed her lips across Sam's. "Are you sure?" she whispered.
Sam put her free hand on Lauren's shoulder and pulled her in. They kissed gently, with no demands and no expectations. When Lauren pressed her tongue to Sam's mouth, Sam parted her lips and let it in. Sam moaned into the kiss and scooted closer, her thigh pressed against Lauren's. Just as Sam realized this was no longer masturbation, Lauren's hand covered hers between her legs.
Lauren leaned back and kissed the corner of Sam's mouth. "Is this all right?"
"Yes," Sam whispered. Her eyes were closed and she spread her legs, withdrawing her hand so Lauren could touch her unencumbered. Lauren spread Sam's lips apart with two fingers and circled a third over the sensitive flesh. Sam arched her back into the caress and put her hand on Lauren's breast.
Sam wasn't sure what was happening, exactly. Was she tingling this way because a woman was touching her? Or just because it felt different? It definitely felt good; already it was maybe one of the best she'd ever had. Men didn't do hand jobs. Men touched once or twice, maybe circled a few times and then went to town. Lauren didn't seem in any particular hurry, her knuckles brushing Sam's pussy lips and her fingertips casually searching for what made Sam gasp, what made her tense, what made her eyes close.
Lauren bowed her head and kissed Sam's neck. She moved her thigh between Sam's legs and moved her hand to the outside curve of Sam's hip. "What...?" Sam whispered.
"Shh," Lauren said. She brushed Sam's hair out of her face and lightly kissed her lips. She drew Sam forward, onto her thigh, and began to rock her hips forward.
Sam rolled with Lauren's movement and ended up on top of her. She gripped Lauren's thighs with her own and began to rock her hips forward. Lauren moved her hands to Sam's ass and guided her. By the time Sam came, they were both crying out loud enough for the people next door to overhear.
Sam trembled with her orgasm, clutched handfuls of Lauren's shirt and pulled her up for a bruising kiss. Lauren worked at Sam's buttons as they kissed, Sam's tongue now confidently dueling with her own. When Sam's shirt was off, she reached behind her back to undo her bra. The kiss broke and Lauren took the opportunity to shed her t-shirt completely.
Sam ran her hands down Lauren's chest, circled her nipples and watched as they hardened under her thumbs. She looked into Lauren's blue eyes, so vivid even in the darkness, and pushed her hips forward again. Lauren groaned and held tight to Sam. They moved together slowly, Sam pushing her thigh against Lauren with each upward stroke. Lauren buried her face against Sam's bare breast, rolling her tongue across Sam's pale breasts and dark nipples and moved a hand to her clit.
She playfully bit the curve of Sam's breast as she came, her body going slack. She pulled Sam down on top of her and they shared lazy kisses as their bodies cooled down, their legs still entwined. Sam was almost dripping with sweat, her shoulder and forehead glistening in the darkness.
Lauren brushed Sam's face, touched her bottom lip and said, "This was amazing."
"Was it?" she asked.
Lauren kissed Sam's lips, letting the touch linger. When they parted, Lauren spoke against Sam's mouth. "It was amazing. You were amazing."
Sam nuzzled her face against Lauren's cheek and said, "I should go back to my room."
"You don't have to..."
"I know," Sam said. "But... if I don't, I won't get any sleep whatsoever."
"And you have to get up early for..."
"Dr. Lee," Sam sighed. "But thank you for this."
Lauren smiled. "It was my pleasure. I'll see you after your demonstration?"
"Yeah," Sam said. "We'll pick up where we left off."
Lauren brushed the back of her hand over Sam's breast. "I can't wait."
Twenty-four hours later, Sam and the rest of SG-1 were crashing a high school reunion somewhere in Kansas. By the time the Air Force covered up everything they had done and Sam was given permission to return to the hotel, Dr. Lauren Landon had already checked out. There were no messages for her at the front desk, no phone messages left for her room.
Lauren probably had figured Sam reconsidered. That was that. She had no idea where Lauren worked, whether she was civilian or worked for a government project... nothing. She supposed she could investigate, see who was working on shield technology and seek out any Dr. Landon's working there. But it seemed like a moot point. If I slept with someone and they disappeared without a word the very next day, I know what I would be thinking.
Sam packed up her hotel room and reluctantly headed for the airport. In the end, it was probably for the best. Some avenues were best left unexplored. Besides, she was already kicking herself for going to Lauren's room at all. Not because of the sex, the sex was great. After she learned how Daniel was almost captured by a bounty hunter, she realized how easily she could have been captured. If Lauren had been lying about who she was...
She'd made it out safely this time. She decided she should take it as a warning; next time she might not be so lucky. Keep your eyes open, watch your back, don't go into hotel rooms with strange women.
Next time, go into a hotel room with a woman you know very well.
A few weeks later, Sam was in the commissary when Cameron breezed through. He leaned down, one arm on the back of her chair and the other on the table, boxing her in. "I took her to my high school reunion," he said. He pointed a finger at her. "It's your turn." He patted her on the shoulder and high-tailed it out of the room through a different exit.
While Sam was still trying to figure out what the hell had just happened, Vala came in. "Ah," Sam said.
Vala saw her and smiled. "Sam! Did Cameron come through here?"
"Yeah," Sam said. "But give the guy a break." She used her foot to push out the chair opposite her. "Take a seat."
Vala turned the seat around and straddled it, resting her arms across the back. "So. What are we planning for tonight?"
Sam paused with her spoon halfway to the bowl. She looked across the table at Vala. The attractive, effervescent, up for anything, if-it's-kinky-to-you-I've-probably-already-done-it-three-times Vala. And in regards to her new rule... she'd known Vala for almost a year. She definitely counted as 'safe.' Relatively speaking. Sam lowered the spoon to her pudding, laced her fingers together and shrugged. "I don't know. How'd you feel about watching something with me?"
Vala's smile widened and she shrugged her shoulders. "Watching something? Like a movie?"
Sam returned the smile. "Not exactly."
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