DISCLAIMER: Stargate SG-1 and its characters are the property of MGM, Showtime, Gekko etc. No infringement intended.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: A special thanks goes out again to atfm for sticking with me through these many days.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

The Ninth Day of Christmas
By Ann


A ray of sun peeked through the curtain's opening and made its way across the room towards the bed's only occupant; the light finally coming to rest on the sleeping woman's face. The beautiful face frowned, slowly wakening at the unwanted intrusion. She reached for her lover, but her hand came up empty.

"Sam?" The raspy, sleep-filled voice was met with silence. Janet eased her head from the pillow and looked around the room. A soft sound from just outside the window gained her attention and drew her from the bed.

Easing the curtain back, Janet squinted into the bright sunlight as she watched a figure walk across the yard. She shielded her eyes from the rays and focused on Sam, frowning at the odd design of string which decorated her yard. She knew her lover would never be able to keep still during her down time, but she'd hoped that today, Christmas Eve, Sam would be content to just relax and enjoy the next two days.

Janet watched as Sam grabbed a notepad and began to scribble something across the page. She'd seen that look of concentration; Sam was working on some sort of calculation. Janet moved across the room and snatched her robe from the chair. She slid into the silky material as she headed towards the door.

By the time Janet had made it outside, Sam was driving another stake into the ground and fastening the string around its top. Janet struggled to make out the design, but she'd never seen anything quite like it. She called out to her lover.

"Sam? What are you doing?"

Sam wiped the moisture from the knee of her pants and stood. She smiled as she made her way over to Janet, stealing a quick kiss before she explained herself.

"I'm working on your flowerbed design."

Janet leaned into her lover and looked back at the string. She would definitely have the most uniquely shaped flowerbed anybody had ever seen.

"I thought we decided to hire the work done."

"Oh, I'm just mapping out the shape."

Janet once again studied the pattern. "Um, Sam? I wanted a circular bed."

Sam nodded. "I know, that's why I'm putting down the stakes. The contractors will just have to dig out where I've marked."

"Sam, honey," Janet gently rubbed her lover's lower back, "don't take this the wrong way, but," she gestured towards the string, "that isn't a circle."

"Not yet, but when I'm finished it'll be the most perfect circle ever. I'm using the nine-point circle model."

"Nine points?"

"See, Janet, you take a triangle, and then find the perpendicular feet dropped from the vertices to the opposite sides. The circle will pass through those points as well as the midpoints of each side of the triangle. Euler is responsible for that particular discovery."

Janet frowned. "Isn't that just six points?"

"Oh, you're paying attention." Sam grinned widely.

"Hey, I always pay attention when you explain things; I just don't understand most of the time."

Sam chuckled. "It's not my fault I'm a geek."

"You're not a geek, Samantha Carter." Janet lightly hit her lover on the shoulder. "It's just that no one else is intelligent enough to understand all your technical mumbo jumbo. Now, where do the other three points come from?"

"Well, Feuerbach added to Euler's circle by plotting the orthocenter where the three perpendicular segments intersect and from there calculating the midpoints of the lines from each vertex to the orthocenter. The circle contains these three points as well." Sam smiled, adding, "It's actually orthogonal to the Stevanovic circle. The nine-point circle bisects any line from the orthocenter to a point on the circumcircle which can be found . . ."

"Whoa, whoa," Janet interrupted her lover before she moved past the point of no return. Pulling her robe's sash tight, she pecked her lover on the cheek and turned to go inside, calling over her shoulder as she reached the door, "You really are a geek, Sam, but I do love you."

With a goofy grin, Sam headed back to plot more points.

"I can't believe you let Cassie go skiing this week." Sam sipped from her glass of wine and leaned her head against the back of the couch.

"She needed this, Sam; we'll have Christmas when she returns."

"Yeah, but it just isn't the same without her."

Janet reached over and moved a strand of blonde hair off her lover's face. "I know, but at least we're together."

"Yeah, that's a very good thing." Sam slid her hand into Janet's. "So, I guess we have to wait until Cassie gets back to open our presents, huh?"

"I promised Cassie that we would."

Sam stuck out her lower lip. "Not even one?"

"Not even one." Janet swooped down and latched onto the lip before it could retreat. She released her captive just as quickly.

"Hey," Sam protested, "you stopped just when it was getting good."

Janet grinned and pushed to her feet. She offered her hand to her pouting lover. "C'mon, the lasagna should be ready. If you're a good little girl, I'll see about finding something that you can unwrap."

Sam leapt to her feet and pulled a laughing Janet into the kitchen.

An hour later, the two women stood side by side, cleaning up the mess.

"I hate washing cheese-coated dishes." Sam grimaced as she practically rubbed the design off the dinnerware.

"Well, you certainly didn't mind shoveling that same cheese into your mouth." Janet dried the glasses and placed them back in the cabinet.

"It was excellent." Sam turned towards her lover. "Besides, I knew the faster we ate, the faster I'd get to unwrap my present. By the way, where'd you hide them this year?"

"Uh-uh, I'm not telling. You're worse than a kid; you'll be feeling the box's shape and shaking it back and forth."

"Oh, c'mon, Janet, you're taking all the fun out of Christmas."

"I can promise you, Sam, the gift I've chosen will be well worth you waiting for the rest of them."

Sam stuck her hands in the soapy water and started on the next plate. She was just about positive that whatever Janet had intended for her to open wouldn't quench her thirst for what the other gifts would bring.

So intent on her washing, Sam never noticed that Janet had left the room. She'd washed and rinsed the rest of the dishes before she finally realized that she was alone.

"Why that little sneak; she knew I'd get lost in my thoughts and go through the washing routine without thinking. I've been tricked." Sam quickly dried her hands and went in search of her lover. She nearly fell on her face when she reached the darkened den, but the near fall wasn't caused by the poor lighting.

There, in front of the soft lights of the tree, stood Janet, wearing a sheer teddy, a very sheer teddy. Sam walked forward as if she were in a trance.

"Wow," was the only word Sam could manage.

"Ready to unwrap your gift?" Janet struck the sexiest pose Sam had ever seen. Sam nodded her head and kept moving forward, stopping just short of her prize.

"Oh, Janet, I am so taking my time unwrapping you."

True to her word, Sam took hours getting inside her present.

Janet awoke once again to the sun in her eyes, and once again, she found herself alone. She smiled at the sight of her robe lying across the end of the bed, and reaching for the covering, she slipped it on and headed for the den to find her lover.

Coming up empty, she moved into the kitchen with the same result. A movement in the backyard had her stepping to the door and peering outside. The string art was now in the shape of a circle. Janet reached for the knob and stepped outside.

Sam stood outside the string with her hands on her hips, surveying her work. She'd awakened hours ago and had decided to complete her work from the day before. After a few more calculations, she'd managed to plot all nine points and had moved the stakes to their proper positions, tying the string tightly to the top of each stake. She was quite pleased with the results.

"Oh, Sam, you were right; this has to be the most perfect circle I've ever seen."

Sam reached a hand out and pulled Janet into her side.

"You're the one who's perfect, Jan."

Janet burrowed into Sam's chest, grateful that they'd taken the risk to be together. Her career would be nothing without the woman standing by her side.

The couple stood outside the circle, eyeing the string, looking for any sign of imperfection. No matter where they moved their gaze, they couldn't find any.

The circle was truly perfect; a perfect circle of love.

The End

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