[Stargate] Of Memory (The Poker Face Remix)
Monday 31st May 2010
Beta: Selenay, Alicambs and hhertzof
Summary: Daniel remembers. Jack wishes he didn't.
Notes: Remix of Someone to Watch Over Me and Nw Nxnt by MelayneSeahawk
Teal'c was winning at poker again. He'd won nearly every round they'd played tonight. The only one he hadn't had been when Carter had grinned widely at her cards and everyone had folded in the face of what they thought was a winning hand. Despite that, she was now losing as much as the rest of them and Teal'c now sat behind a pile of bills and assorted coins with a distinct glint in his eye. Beyond that he'd hardly shown any other expressions all evening and it was impossible to tell if he was bluffing no matter how much he and Carter baited him. Daniel, on the other hand, hadn't said much. Jack had been sneaking glances at him, but he wasn't telepathic and he learned as little from Daniel's expression as he did from Teal'c's.
Now it was Daniel's bet and he'd zoned out again. Jack and Carter exchanged a glance over their cards.
"That's what, the second time he's done that?" Jack commented.
"Third," Teal'c put in.
Carter looked more worried and called Daniel's name softly, but there was no response.
"Daniel," Jack said, louder, and waved a hand in front of Daniel's face.
Daniel jumped and the creases in his face smoothed out as he focused on Jack for a moment, before looking round at the identical concerned expressions on Carter and Teal'c's faces. "Jack?"
"You zoned out again," he explained, a mixture of worry and fear in his voice. "For five minutes this time."
"Sorry." Daniel frowned, but didn't volunteer any more details of what he'd been remembering.
Jack hesitated to ask again. The last time this had happened they'd been on P2X 445 two days ago and despite Daniel looking like he'd been in pain when he'd come out of it, he'd refused to tell Jack what it had all been about, beyond it being a memory from when he was Ascended. Jack had been sure Daniel knew more than that, but he hadn't said anything, giving Daniel the chance to volunteer more information himself. When nothing had been forthcoming he'd hoped their weekly team night would help, what with being off the base and at Jack's house. Daniel had felt comfortable here once.
Teal'c broke the lengthening silence. "It is your bet, Daniel Jackson."
"Ah, right." Daniel straightened up and considered his cards. "I'll call." He added some more cash to the pile in the center of the table.
Jack was unsurprised to find that merely added to Teal'c's win and he was glad to hear the doorbell announcing the arrival of the pizza.
"I'll help you," Carter said, following him to the door. That last round had cleaned her out too and Jack wondered just how long Daniel could hold out against the might of Teal'c. Especially since Daniel had drunk over half of his beer.
Carter took the pizzas while Jack paid for them out of the money he'd been keeping back for the purpose. "What are we going to do about Daniel, sir?" she asked quietly, as the door closed.
Jack sighed. "Let him finish that bottle of beer?" he suggested, half-seriously, putting his change back in his pocket.
"I think you should talk to him."
He frowned and tried to take the pizzas from Carter, but she held on tightly to them. "Why me?" Jack had been very careful to keep his real feelings for Daniel hidden from Carter and Teal'c. If she had known what had gone on between them before Daniel Ascended, she'd never so much as hinted at it before.
"Have you seen the way he keeps looking at you?"
Even if he was sure she didn't mean in that way, his heart skipped a beat anyway. He was careful not to change his expression and Carter carried on without waiting for an answer.
"It's that same protective look you get about him sometimes. Whatever he's remembering from when he was Ascended, I'm sure it has something to do with you."
There was one thing it could be, but since it was something Jack didn't like to think about at all, he wasn't keen to discuss it with Daniel. "Then I'm the last person he should talk to." To forestall her argument, he snatched the pizzas off her and took them into the living room, where Teal'c had just won the last of Daniel's money.
Daniel smiled at the sight of the pizzas and they all dug in, while Teal'c explained just what he'd done to his Wii Fit to necessitate buying a new one with all the money he'd won tonight. Jack ignored Carter's pointed looks at him and told Teal'c he was banned from future poker games. At the rate he was going Teal'c would end up having to pay Jack's mortgage within a year.
Fortunately, Daniel suggested a game called senet, which he and Teal'c then waxed enthusiastically about for a good ten minutes. Jack established from their conversation that it was a game Teal'c had played as a child and Sha're taught to Daniel on Abydos. Apparently Daniel was sure he knew where he could get hold of a set and Jack ended up agreeing to play it at their next team night.
Jack allowed Daniel to finish his beer without comment, even though he had pointedly taken it away from him earlier in the evening. Daniel didn't even notice how warm it had gotten, which wasn't a good sign, even though he hadn't zoned out at all since they started eating.
Afterwards Teal'c suggested a game of Rock Band on the Wii he'd brought with him. Jack didn't remember who had first shown Teal'c the Wii, but he would bet anything it was now Teal'c's favorite thing about Earth. It had been a slippery slope from beating everyone at boxing and bowling, to Teal'c and Carter's arguments over who was better at Rock Band. Jack hadn't even known Carter was that musical, but that was typical Carter, being good at everything. Jack and Daniel were usually happy to just watch and not make fools of themselves. Jack knew this would be the perfect time to talk to Daniel even without the pointed looks Carter gave him as Teal'c set the game up.
Daniel sat in the corner of the couch, right where he used to sit before he Ascended. It was the first time Jack had seen him sit there since he came back and he couldn't help smiling at the sight before he settled back beside him, another beer in his hand.
Under cover of the song Teal'c and Carter were playing to, Jack turned to Daniel and, keeping his voice quiet enough not to be heard by the other two, said, "So, what is it?"
"Mm?" Daniel frowned and sounded like he was concentrating more on the game than on Jack.
"What you've been remembering," he clarified.
Daniel didn't say anything, just blinked, but Jack knew Daniel knew what he was talking about. When he still said nothing, Jack decided to up the ante a little. "You keep zoning out. I can't take someone off world who might not be concentrating when there are people are trying to kill us."
"I remembered Ba'al torturing you," Daniel said all of a sudden.
As much as Jack knew that it would help Daniel to talk about what he had been remembering, he just couldn't do it. "I've been trying not to," he said and turn his attention back to the television screen. The song came to an end with a new high score and Jack jumped up before Teal'c could click on 'Play again'. "How about a game of baseball," he suggested, and picked Wii Sports out of the pile of Teal'c's games.
"I will beat you, O'Neill."
Jack smiled at the challenge. "Don't count on it."
Carter sighed. "I'll sit this one out." She took Jack's place on the couch next to Daniel, who hadn't said anything. Jack didn't expect him to either.
Since it was Teal'c's game, Jack let him bat first. It was easier to eavesdrop on Carter and Daniel's conversation while he pitched. It wasn't that he didn't care what Daniel had gone through, it was more that he didn't want to dream about it tonight.
"Ba'al tortured Jack," Daniel said. Carter hadn't even had to ask anything.
"I know," Carter replied, almost too quietly for Jack to hear. "He spent a day in the infirmary when he got back."
Jack had spent half that day asleep and the other half trying to get Dr. Fraiser to let him out.
Teal'c scored a run and the Wii crowd went wild. Carter and Daniel said nothing and Jack wasn't sure if that was because they were used to Teal'c being good at all the Wii games or because they weren't really watching. He wasn't going to turn round to find out.
"I couldn't do anything to stop him." Daniel sounded frustrated. "The only thing I could do was to take away some of Jack's pain."
"And that's what you were remembering?"
Daniel must have nodded, because they were both quiet while Teal'c finished his turn at bat and Jack was up.
"There's something else important I'm forgetting. From before I was Ascended."
Jack completely failed to swing his bat, he was so busy listening to what Daniel might say next.
"Are you ready O'Neill?"
Jack nodded and this time he hit the ball far enough to get a double.
"I'm going to get some water," Carter said. "Playing guitar is thirsty work."
"I'll come with you," Daniel said, and Jack heard them both go off to the kitchen. Which at least meant he'd equalled Teal'c's score by the time the inning ended.
He could hear their low voices carrying over the sound of the game. He wasn't sure if he was glad or annoyed not to be able to hear the words. If they were talking about what Daniel had been remembering when he was zoning out, then Jack thought it was probably just as well they were in another room. It was in the past and he'd prefer not to know any more details now.
In the end, Teal'c did beat him. It was only because he was distracted, but he wasn't going to tell Teal'c the reason why, so he didn't offer it as an excuse.
As Teal'c packed up, Carter came back into the living room and gave him a sympathetic look. She'd been worried about him at the time, he got that, but he didn't want any of them to be reliving it now. She turned it into a smile when she noticed he was watching her.
Daniel followed her, looking happier, so that was something. Except that he frowned at the couch and stood there, unmoving, looking at the spot he'd been sitting in earlier.
"Something wrong with my couch?" Jack kept his tone jokey, wanting Daniel to relax enough to tell him what he was thinking.
"No," Daniel replied, slowly. "Just something I've forgotten."
Jack wondered if it was the same thing Daniel had mentioned to Carter earlier. He wanted to ask Daniel if he remembered anything about his feelings for Jack before he'd Ascended, but Carter and Teal'c were only in the hall and it wasn't a conversation he wanted to have with them listening. So instead he said, "If it's important, it'll come back to you."
Daniel nodded and smiled.
Jack was tempted to touch him, to help him remember, but he could wait. The moment would be so much sweeter when Daniel had all of his memories back of the time when he and Jack had been together. For now, Jack had to let him go and hope that the next time Daniel zoned out it was because of a memory from before he Ascended, rather than during.
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