DISCLAIMER: I don’t own Janet Frasier, Major Carter or any aspect of the programme Stargate:Sg1. I am not making any profit from this, so pweese pweese don’t sue me. Sg1 belongs to…well, I don’t know who it belongs to, but it’s not me.
WARNING: None, really, one bad word.
‘Oof!’ Carter had to let her breath out in an uncontrolled rush as the man barrelled into her.
‘Sorry Major!’ He called, carrying on his way.
She sighed; it always seemed like people were moving around her like water these days; flowing past her, unstoppable in their need to get to where they where going, do what they needed to do and get onto the next thing.
Sam, one the other hand, was feeling the strain of a transient lifestyle. She felt lonely, and even though she had gained the camaraderie of SG-1, she still felt a little like an outsider. Especially now they were off-world and she was stuck here with her stupid injury! One stupid mistake and it had lumbered her with a pointless injury!
Her inner outburst had distracted her for a moment; long enough for her to be in the way of another person, and suffer another knock to her injured side. Groaning, she tottered on her way and almost fell into the infirmary.
‘Major! Sam? Are you ok?’ Dr Frasier led her to a bed and sat her down on it. She wanted to examine the Major but Sam waved her off.
‘I’m fine, Janet.’ Sam smiled, her white teeth showing, ‘honestly. Some guy just ran into me, that’s all.’
‘Well, they should have been more careful.’ Frasier almost spat the words out, staring furiously at the open door. Carter’s smile slowly faded.
‘Are you ok?’ She asked softly.
‘What?’ Janet shook her head, bringing herself back. ‘Yeah, oh, yeah, I’m fine. Why do you ask?’
‘Well, you seemed a little…grumpy?’ Carter tried, trying to search Janet’s face for a reaction.
The Doctor lowered her gaze and sighed. ‘No, I’m fine, really.’ She said, offering up a wane smile.
‘No offence, Janet, but you don’t look it. Is something troubling you?’
‘Ye…No. I said, everything is fine.’ Carter was slightly taken aback by Janet’s sharp tone, and she hopped off the bed.
‘Ok, well if you’re sure, I’m going to get back to-’ ‘Work? I don’t think so, Sam.’ Janet was smiling slightly now. ‘What did I tell you, no work for at least a week?’ Carter nodded, embarrassed. That was indeed what the doc had told her. ‘In fact, I’m surprised you’re even on the base.’
‘Well, you should take the opportunity, get out and have some fun.’
‘What am I supposed to do for a week?!’ Carter threw up her hands in mock exasperation and then winced as she pulled at her side.
‘You see…’ The doctor admonished as Carter returned to sitting, ‘You’re trying to pretend like you don’t even have an injury. I bet you’ve been running around these past two days repairing things and examining-'
‘Woah, woah…’ Carter held up her hands placating, a grin plastered across her face. ‘Ok, ok, I get your point.’
‘Well…ok then.’ The doctor conceded, looking a little sulky. ‘Just don’t do anything that’ll get you hurt.’ She spoke softly, and Sam hopped off the bed, catching Janet’s forearm.
‘Look…’ She smiled at the floor nervously … ‘Do you want to go catch a bite in the mess-hall? Then you can tell me all about it.’
Janet gave up trying to deny anything was wrong then; she sighed and shook her head. ‘Sam, I’m sorry, I’d love too I really would but I have to finish these tests before the materials are corrupted by overexposure.’
‘I understand.’ Carter backed off a little, smiling. ‘If you need anything, it doesn’t look like I’m going to be doing anything for the rest of the week….’ She grinned, ‘So, tonight I’m staying at the base, other than that I’ll be at home, ok? Drop by if you need anything.’
‘Ok,’ Janet nodded. Carter nodded in return and then headed out the door, stopping at the threshold to peer back. Then she was gone. Janet sighed and calmed the queasy feeling in her stomach; that had been close.
Major Carter gingerly picked up the knife, sucking her finger voraciously. The doorbell had sounded, interrupting her meditative thought as she was cutting up carrot for a salad. Still sucking her finger, she headed over to the door, swinging it wide open as a disenchanted scowl settled on her features.
‘Hi Sam.’ A quiet voice said. Carter looked up, surprised.
‘hungmph…I mean, hi.’ Carter said, remembering to take the finger out of her mouth as she waved Janet inside. It had been two days since they had last spoken, and Sam felt a weight lift out of her chest at the fact the Janet had decided to come and see her.
The doctor giggled, but declined to come inside. ‘Actually, I was wondering if you had eaten yet?’ When Sam shook her head negative, Janet smiled, ‘good…I was hoping you might like to come for a picnic.’
‘Oh, sure, absolutely.’ Carter enthused, grabbing her coat. As they headed out to the car, she asked ‘Where are we going?’
‘Oh, it’s one of my favourite spots, I think you’ll like it.’
When Janet didn’t say any more, Sam said, ‘oh, a surprise?’ Janet nodded.
Carter was surprised when Janet turned her car off the road and onto a track that was so overgrown, Sam hadn’t even seen it. She was also surprised that the doctors car was taking it so well, although she didn’t say so. She kept quiet even as they wound their way up and up, finally stopping near a cluster of trees.
Janet led the way forward, and even though they didn’t go far from the car it seemed like much further, the trees and scrub partially blocking their view.
Sam broke her silence as the emerged in a clearing, sun dappled leaves swaying quietly over a patch of greener than green grass, warm and slightly bouncy as they set out the blanket. Carter disengaged herself from the activity for a minute as she noticed the view. Through a break in the trees, she caught a glimpse of a panoramic vista, spread out before her in Technicolor green and brown, the viscous slashes of colour caused by a nearby river catching her eye.
‘Wow…’ She breathed, taking deep breaths of the sweet, clear air.
‘Isn’t it?’ Janet asked. Carter jumped; she hadn’t heard the doctor approached, fixated as she was with the view.
‘Yeah…I can see why you would like it up here.’
After a while in silence, they headed back to the blanket. Carter slowly got herself down, being careful of her injury – ‘I’m taking your advice: taking it easy.’ She grinned, when Janet shot her a questioning look – and gratefully took the beer that Frasier handed her.
‘I hope you like the food, I packed some stuff you might like.’
Carter sneaked a peak in the hamper, and her eyes widened, ‘Some stuff?! This looks more like a banquet than a picnic!’ She started reaching in, pulling out strawberries and French bread and numerous other bits. With her blonde hair tousled and her eyes wide and curios, she reminded Janet of a child; she had seemingly boundless curiosity as she pulled foodstuffs from the hamper, exclaiming at each new find.
‘So, do you come out here a lot?’ Sam asked when they had settled down to eat.
‘Yeah, I find it’s just so peaceful…it helps me relax when work and…things are getting me down.’
The Major noted her hesitation and her eyes narrowed thoughtfully, her natural need to help sending her bluntness to the fore. ‘What’s the matter Janet?’ She asked, pronouncing the doctor’s name as reassuringly as she could. ‘I’ve noticed something’s been bothering you lately, you’ve been a bit…jumpy.’
‘Noticed? You noticed me? Jumpy? Me?’ Janet seemed to flit from one thing after the other as she spoke; she suddenly felt very, very isolated up there with Sam.
‘That’s an odd question,’ The military woman chuckled, ‘Of course I noticed you, I see you everyday,’ her tone turned sincere, ‘and I worry when you act like this. If you want you can talk to me, you know that.’
The sweet gesture from the Major was enough to break down Janet’s carefully constructed professional boundaries. She lowered her gaze and bit her lower lip as it started to quiver.
‘Want to tell me what it is?’
The doctor nodded. Slowly, she took deep breaths and regained a measure of her confidence. Lifting her gaze slightly, and playing nervously with a corner of the rug, she said. ‘You.’
It was almost inaudible; Carter’s in-drawn breath was louder. ‘Oh Janet, did I do something to upset you or offend you in some way-’
‘No, quite the opposite in fact.’ Janet spoke up, giving the Major pause for thought.
She stayed silent until it hit her in the pit of her stomach, forcing her mouth into an understanding oh, and her eyes widening. ‘Oohhhh,’ She said, letting it out with a breath she didn’t even know she’d been holding.
Janet looked down at the mutely coloured rug, her cheeks flushing bright red and tears threatening to form in the corners of her eyes. She was expecting the worst; she was expecting Sam to get up and walk off, or attack her verbally, or even slap her. She’d been blown off, just like that.
The silence dragged on and on, and inside Janet’s mind she was slowly retreating into a private world of might have beens and would have dones, her eyes showing her only what she wanted to see. She didn’t even attempt to return until she realised something was being forced into her clenched hand. A wine glass.
‘Well, that’s wonderful news!’ Carter enthused, pouring the wine generously.
‘Of course! How many more excuses can I have to spend time in the infirmary?’ Her tone was softly mocking, and she unleashed one of her famous bright smiles.
The doctor worked her jaw, but coherent sound had deserted her. Inside, a part of her was singing, and she smiled back. She felt overwhelmed, like someone who thinks their house has been knocked down, only to find out they’d had a key to a mansion all along, they just hadn’t known how to find it.
Carter was rejoicing inside; loneliness didn’t seem like much of an issue anymore, and she felt like a whole new world had opened up to her inside the SGC. Leaning forward, she gently pressed her lips against those of the doctors’ wet with wine, and Janet was so shocked she nearly didn’t respond.
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