DISCLAIMER: I only borrowed them for a while. MGM and whoever can
have them back whenever they want.
SERIES: The fifteenth in a series of vignettes from those close to Sam/Janet.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author
Outside Looking In:
"I think Dr Fraiser likes me."
Why didn't she just tell me to shut up? I would have, honest. Not everyone likes to talk whilst they drive. I respected Major Carter's opinion a lot. Of course I had to go and compound it by saying: "No, I mean she really likes me. Nurse Phillips told me that Dr Fraiser thinks I'm cute."
I wonder how close I came to just being tossed out of the car? Especially after my next comment. "You're her friend, Sam. Do you know if she's seeing anyone at the moment?"
I wondered why her hands were clutching the steering wheel quite so tightly but all she said was "Let's get some lunch."
I had begun to realise that Sam used invitations to eat as a misdirection when I strayed too close to things she wasn't quite ready to discuss. Never one to pass up the opportunity to sample American cuisine I followed her into the diner. She ordered a black coffee and a piece of something white and hard that she told me was shortbread. I ordered a burger with all the trimmings.
I wondered if I should let her know I was on to her tactic. "So, is Dr Fraiser seeing anyone?" She frowned at me, then looked away. Oops. Was Dr Fraiser seeing someone that Major Carter also liked? Or perhaps she didn't like him and they had argued about his suitability. On Kelnownan, the opinion of your friends about the suitability of your lover was given great consideration.
"Yes, she's been in a pretty serious relationship for the past four years," she said at last.
Wow. That was unexpected. I certainly hadn't seen any signs that she was involved with anyone. When did she find the time? But then I'd only known her a few months. Four years – the relationship had had time to settle. To become if not routine then an established part of your life. I was jealous. Longest relationship I'd had lasted three months. "Really?" I paused. "Anyone I know? I figure it's got to be someone on the base. It would be too difficult to be anyone from outside what with the secrecy thing…"
I paused. She had the strangest expression on her face. The Colonel had threatened to shoot me on several occasions. I was beginning to believe that I had reached that point with Major Carter. I truly didn't mean to be annoying. It was just, well I was interested. I was also beginning to realise that there were secrets, and there were secrets. And maybe I had just stumbled into one of those.
Colonel O'Neill had told me that he knew hundreds of ways to kill someone. I wondered how many ways Major Carter knew. The last thing I expected was to hear here say, her voice low was "It's me, Jonas. Janet and I are together. We have been for the past four years."
What could I say to that? "Really." I concentrated on my burger for a while to give myself time to think. I knew military regulations. I had read them. I knew that what the Major had just told me went way beyond them. And she was trusting me with the information. Me! The alien. The one who had got Dr Jackson killed.
"So, you and Dr Fraiser have been… together… for the past four years. Isn't that sort of against regulations?"
"Yes. But we keep it off base and those who need to know, know that. Come on, Jonas, if I hadn't told you, would you ever have guessed?"
Certain things I had seen or thought I had seen when we were stuck in Antarctica were making a lot more sense suddenly. I had put it down to being delirious. But it wouldn't do for Sam to know that. I decided to play dumb. "I got to admit, Sam, I would never have guessed. So you and Dr Fraiser are…" Which was the best term to use? There were so many, most of them unflattering. I definitely did not want to get on the wrong side of this woman. Either woman for that matter. I genuinely liked both her and the doc. Both of them had gone out of their way to make me feel welcome on Earth. If they were together and happy then I was happy for them. And being on their good side could do me no harm either.
"So you and Dr Fraiser are…"
"Life Partners, Lesbians, Significant Others," Sam shrugged. "We're together and for both of us that's the most important thing in our lives. As I said, a few people such as General Hammond, the Colonel, Teal'c and Cassie of course know the truth and they are all happy for us. We're careful because we know that it could mean the end of our careers if the wrong people found out. I'm trusting you with this, Jonas."
"I appreciate that, Sam." I looked at the woman appraisingly, her candid blue eyes betraying her slight unease. "I would never betray your confidence, believe me. On my world relationships like yours weren't easy, either. My cousin, Tayla. She was a teacher until… well, she lost her job and her house. Because of her beliefs and her lifestyle she was judged by our government to be a poor influence on children and wasn't allowed to work with them any more. She and Miketi had to move to another city. She works in an office now. At least I hope she still does." There had been no word from Kelnowa since the civil war hotted up. I knew my people well. I was not hopeful.
The silence grew uncomfortable. Remarkably, I had lost my appetite. I glanced at his watch. "Hey, we'd better get a move on. Vernon Sharp could be anywhere by now. Hopefully his grandmother will have some clue as to where he's hiding out." Sam reached for her purse but I gainstayed her. "On me. I don't have much opportunity to spend money."
"Okay. Thank you," Sam smiled at me. It was the kind of smile that I had seen her bestow on O'Neill and Teal'c before, but rarely on me. Until today. It was a genuine smile of trust, respect. It was something worth seeing. Better than the critters anyhow. And Dr Fraiser was definitely a lucky woman.
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