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What Fools These Mortals Be
by dinkydow

graphic by JoleneB

They leaned toward each other, tentatively touching hands, and then entwining fingers in a slow caress. One gray-haired male stared hungrily with brown eyes that were almost black in their seriousness. The blonde-haired female couldn't take her blue eyes off his face. What they were about to do was forbidden. All their memories shouted it, but they had finally decided to throw all the rules and regulations out the window. After all, what would he do? Bend their dog tags? Throw them out of the Air Force?

That thought caused the male's face to crinkle up with laughter as a dry chuckle came bubbling out of this throat and found its way past his lips. The female cocked her head sideways in question of his unusual response.

"I was just thinking about why we haven't done this before, that's all," he explained with another chuckle.

She smiled in response and licked her lips nervously. "You've got to admit that those rules hardly apply to us anymore, Sir." Even after their new commander had given his blessing to their union, they were finding it hard to override all their conditioning and rules.

"Ack, stop it with the 'Sir' thing," he protested. "You sure you want to do this?"

Her answering smile was all the answer he needed. Slowly, they bent their heads toward each other, and then touched. A dizzying kaleidoscope of images flashed before their eyes of past events shared and suffered. Past the feelings they'd confessed to but never acted on, until now. Clenching their teeth against the storm of feelings and sensation, they both resolved to ride this out. It felt overpowering in its intensity, but they'd waited too long for this to stop it now.

The memory of their first meeting all those years ago when the brash and confident Captain Samantha Carter had walked into the Briefing Room, one hip at a time, and challenged Colonel Jack O'Neill to an arm-wrestling match was reviewed. Following closely was the frightening scenes of that cavern in the Antarctic when they'd both almost died. The moment was too intense, and they jerked apart, panting slightly from the strength of their shared memories.

"It's always been an honor serving with you, S... I mean Jack," she confessed. "Do you remember when we were tested by that za'tarc device from the Tok'ra?"

"Ya think? How could I forget? Thanks to that thingy, I had to 'fess up' to my feelings for you. In front of Hammond, God, and everyone. Come to think of it, though, maybe that wasn't such a bad thing after all."

"I suppose not. After all, it just confirmed what we both already knew. Didn't it? Even if we had to keep it in that room and never act on it, we always knew it was there," she admitted with another smile that dazzled him with its brilliance. "Are you sure no one knows we're here? What I'm trying to say is, I kind of wanted our first time to be, you know...private and special."

"Yeah, I'm sure. The boss is gone, the phone is switched off, and no one knows about this place. I'm sure of it. It's times like this that my special ops training really comes in handy, ya know." He waggled his brownish gray eyebrows at her suggestively as they lowered themselves to sit upon the ground.

It was true, the spot was secluded, and she couldn't remember seeing it before. Nothing else was visible for as far as her eyes could see. That made her feel a little bolder about what they were about to do. She licked dry lips again and drew a shaky breath.

"Too bad we can't get drunk. It would make things easier, I suppose," she mused. "Then again, that wouldn't work, would it?"

"No, it most definitely would not, Sam," he agreed with a smile and a slight shake of his head. They loosened their hands, and he scooted over closer to sit next to her. She leaned up against his shoulder and cuddled her head against his chest with a sigh as he draped an arm around her. The additional contact made them feel almost dizzy with the added sensations that threatened to overload their developing senses.

"I guess it's now or never. Right?" she asked again.

"Jeez, Sam. Why don't you sound a little more confident about this thing, will ya?" he groused good-naturedly.

"I suppose I'm just nervous, that's all. It's one thing to think about it, but another thing entirely to actually..." she paused.

"Do it? Is that what you're saying?" She nodded and wriggled, settling her body against his in an effort to get more comfortable.

"There, that better?" he asked as he gazed down into her upturned face. He noted absently that she returned his look of hunger as he bent his head to meet hers.

"Uh, huh," she replied as she closed her eyes in the hopes that this would cut down on the overload she'd experienced earlier.

"Good," he breathed as their lips met.

Immediately their worlds and minds exploded as all their thoughts, past and present merged to join them as one, urging them on to complete their act of union. When it came, their joining felt like a fountain that shot ever higher, until, just when they felt like it couldn't become any stronger than it already was, it burst, and then they both fell over the cliff into mind-numbing ecstasy.

Later, they both lay wrapped in each other's arms, marinating in the afterglow, still too spent to speak.

"Was it good for you?" he asked, smiling at the cliché. She nodded shyly and ran her fingers along his arm.

"Yeah, for me too, but then I guess you'd know that. Wouldn't you?"

"You know that I do, Jack. Now that we've merged with each other, I know everything that you do," she answered. They jumped apart when their commander appeared suddenly beside them.

"Your education is progressing quite well," stated Fifth soberly. Now you understand the importance of merging and sharing information with our smaller brothers. By reliving their memories and sharing this information, we shall discover the means to defeat those who seek to destroy us."

"Yes, Sir," they both replied as they stood and faced their commander and teacher.

"Now you both are ready to share my memories," Fifth told them, exulting silently when he saw the looks of raw unadulterated hunger and anticipation mirrored on the faces of his two students. He stretched out both hands toward them.

"Take my hands, my students, and I will teach you about the beginnings of our brethren," he directed them with an encouraging smile. Without hesitation, they obeyed his instructions and formed a triangle of three seemingly human bodies. When he closed his eyes, they again followed his lead.

Slowly the boundaries between their joined hands began to melt, as they merged with each other. 'What better way to learn than to totally immerse oneself in one's subject?' Fifth thought humorlessly.

The End?

Original Header Information:

Title: "What Fool's These Mortals Be"
Author: dinkydow
Category: Romance. Now that I've seen the season 8 opener, I'll have to classify this as Alternate Universe.
Rating: PG-13
Season: Season 8
Spoilers: New Order Part 2, minor ones from Season one, and it helps to have a familiarity with Season 6, 7, and 8.
Warnings: Ship, it's my first try at this genre, so please be gentle.
Summary: Jack and Sam finally throw caution to the winds and express their feelings for each other. Or do they?
Disclaimer: Nope, still don't own any of them. Couldn't afford to if I did and don't have a mountain to hide them in. Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, Gekko Productions do. I wrote this for entertainment and won't be making any money for it, so please don't sue. (Heavy sigh). Don't have any money if you did.
Author's Notes: Blame this one on brandifer. It was her challenge that got this started. Thanks to Alice and Jolene for reading this one over so quickly.