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Another Day

Title: Another Day
Fandom: Stargate SG-1
Pairing: Jack/Daniel
Summary: When you're stuck in an infinite loop, it can be nice to not have consequenses. Except that, always, the stuff without consequenses lasts only as long as the loop does. Written for the Two Lines Challenge. (S)


cause it's just another day
you will lose it anyway
-air, another day



#

Somewhere around the 37th loop, Jack told himself to stop counting. It didn't work.

Somewhere around the 123rd loop, Daniel said a very dangerous thing: "I mean, if you know in advance that everything is always going to go back to the way it was, then... you could do anything, for as long as you want, without having to worry about the consequences."

Somewhere around the 197th loop, something finally occurred to Jack that (he thought) should have occurred to him a long time before.

#
197:

"I'm going to kiss you," Jack said cheerfully, and Daniel gaped at him.

"Ja-- wha-- y--"

Jack grinned. For half a moment he considered teasing Daniel -- see, there are things called words, and they can be used to communicate; you're a linguist, you should've figured that out by now -- but there were more important things to deal with. "I'm going to kiss you," he said again, patiently. "Unless you don't want me to."

Jack stepped forward, and Daniel didn't step back out of his way. Good sign. "If you say no," Jack continued, reaching forward to gently lift Daniel's glasses off, "I'll stop. Right now. Promise."

Daniel blinked at him, eyes wide without the glasses. "Jack," he whispered, "what..." but his voice trailed off, and his eyes were dark and hungry. Better sign. Jack ran light fingers along his jawline, nudging his face up.

For a moment, they didn't move, and Jack thought: I could stay like this forever. But a sudden burst of warning klaxons reminded him that he couldn't. /Unscheduled offworld activation.../

Daniel twitched at the sound; Jack didn't. He leaned forward and kissed Daniel, and then after a moment Daniel was kissing him back, and Jack wanted to stay like that forever. He closed his eyes, and then everything went white.

For a strange moment, Jack existed in both times at once, and Daniel's mouth tasted of fruit loops, but then he was back in the commissary, and Daniel asked him, for the thousandth time, "What do you think?"

"Oh, you're absolutely right." Jack smiled at Daniel's startled expression, pushed the cereal bowl away, and walked off, whistling, the taste of fruit loops lingering in his mouth.

#
198:

"Hey, Daniel," Jack said, with a casualness that didn't fool either of them.

"Jack," Daniel said neutrally. "Missed you at the briefing."

"I didn't see much point in going."

Daniel's gaze flicked up, sharp and curious, but he didn't address that directly. "Teal'c said some interesting things."

"I bet he did." Jack perched on the corner of Daniel's desk and picked up one of the artifacts sitting there, a strange sort-of-spherical object card out of a dark wood. It was tagged as being from a world they'd visited a few weeks before. Jack idly began tossing it from hand to hand.

"Hey!" Daniel grabbed the artifact and put it out of Jack's reach, with an exasperated look in his direction. "So is it true?"

"What?

"What Teal'c said."

Jack considered the things they'd been doing over the past few loops. He wouldn't put anything past Teal'c at this point. "Mayyyybe," he said. "What was it?"

Daniel told him, and Jack nodded, half disappointed that Teal'c had actually been straightforward. Well, sort of. "Yeah, that's pretty much true," he said. "The bit about the time loop is. The crocodiles, not so much."

"So what are you going to do?"

"The same thing I did last time."

"Try to figure out what's going on?"

"Mmm, no."

Daniel shook his head, blinking in confusion. "What, then?"

"This," Jack said, and the advantage of starting earlier in the day was that Daniel didn't end up tasting like fruit loops when they finished kissing.

Daniel's eyes were dark and his cheeks were slightly flushed and his breath was coming in quick little pants, but he said, "Jack," in a sort of voice that generally preceded a lecture.

Jack touched Daniel's lips with one finger to silence him. "Don't."

Daniel's breath puffed hot against Jack's fingertip. "But--"

"Look," Jack said impatiently. "You were the same person you were yesterday. I mean, today. I mean, the other today. Whatever. At any rate, you didn't mind it then."

"Ah."

Jack waited, but nothing more seemed forthcoming. "Ah?" he prompted. "Ah good? Ah bad? Ah choo?"

"Ah you've done this before." Daniel's voice was tight. "Let me guess: as soon as the day repeats, you'll do it again."

Jack frowned. "Well, yeah."

"And you're doing this because the day's repeating. Because I won't remember."

"Yes. No. Christ, Daniel, can't we just..." Jack made a vague gesture with his hands.

"No, we can't just. Am I a game to you? Is that what it is? Or a toy, something to be thrown away afterwards?"

"This is only the second time!" Jack yelled at him. "Hell, the first time was just to see if you even wanted it; I barely did anything. And now you're, what, accusing me of cheating on you? With yourself? When we haven't even done anything yet?"

"I haven't done anything. You, apparently, have."

Jack stared at him for a long moment; Daniel stared back, eyes narrowed in anger. "Oh, this is going well," he said finally, and stalked out of Daniel's office, slamming the door behind him.

The fifty-four minutes before the next reset were very long, and filled with far too many cups of the blackish sludge that was theoretically coffee.

#
200:

"Hey, Jack, I was thinking--"

"Don't."

"Huh?"

"Don't think," Jack said. "Daniel, are you attracted to me?"

Daniel's mouth opened, closed, opened, closed, and twisted into a bizarre expression. "What kind of a question is that?"

"A damn good one."

"What happens if I say yes?"

"Good things."

"And if I say no?"

"Then I'd have to kill you, of course." Jack grinned at him, and thumbed the elevator button without looking. "Stop stalling. Are you?"

Daniel opened his mouth, closed his mouth, and then he crossed his arms and said, "I don't see what relevance this has to anything."

The elevator came, and Jack made an after-you gesture. "It isn't relevant to much," he said, following Daniel in, "except that I'm going to kiss you, and I'd like you to first admit that you want it.

Daniel flushed a little, and said, "Oh." He licked his lips. "Yes."

"Good," Jack said, and whacked the emergency stop button with the heel of one hand as the other hand guided Daniel's face to his. The elevator hissed to a stop.

A few minutes later, the elevator's intercom crackled, and someone, probably one of the airmen on security duty, said, "Is there a problem in there?"

Jack fumbled for the reply button, and then broke away from Daniel long enough to say, "No, just having a-- discussion."

"That's what meeting rooms are for, sir," the airman said, mildly, and Jack ignored it in favor of Daniel.

"We shouldn't be doing this," Daniel said.

Jack sucked at a spot on Daniel's neck, and he gasped and tilted his head back. "I can stop..." He scraped his fingernails lightly down the front of Daniel's shirt, eliciting another quiet gasp. "...if you want me to."

"Jack--" There was very little protest in his voice.

"It doesn't matter," Jack said, and he braced one hand against the elevator wall next to Daniel's shoulder, the other hand sliding behind his head as Jack leaned in for another kiss. Daniel gripped Jack's face and seemed intent on inhaling him.

"Trust me," Jack said a while later, the words murmured into Daniel's mouth.

"God, yes," Daniel gasped.

#
204:

"Hey, Jack--"

Jack caught Daniel's wrist and pulled him close. "Why hello, Daniel," he said with a wolfish grin. "What a surprise."

"Jack," Daniel said, "I was--" but Jack stopped the rest of the words by kissing him.

"We shouldn't," Daniel said, not quite pulling away. "Not here."

"Why not?" Jack took two steps forwards so that Daniel was backed up against the wall-- one stretch of corridor that was exactly like all the others, nothing special about it except that it was where they were-- and Jack was pressed close, so that he could feel the heat of Daniel's body. "I want this," he said in a low voice. "I've wanted this for a long time."

"But--"

"Trust me," Jack said, impatient, and Daniel, after a moment, did.

One of these times, Jack thought, it would be nice to have proper Stuff going on, not just stolen moments-- but that would take longer than the hours he had in the loop, probably, and that meant dealing with it in real time, and he didn't want that. So instead, they were here, and Jack dropped one hand to Daniel's groin, to the growing hardness that leaped under his touch like a trapped animal. Daniel groaned and arched, and his grip on Jack's shoulders tightened.

"Jack..." Daniel's voice cracked on his name. "If they see--"

Jack nuzzled Daniel's throat, and growled into his hair, quietly fierce: "Let them."

"Oh," Daniel said, and there was a sudden dampness under Jack's touch.

#
212:

"I know what you are doing with Daniel Jackson," Teal'c said.

Jack eyed him warily. "Been spying on us?"

"You have not been being exactly inconspicuous, O'Neill," Teal'c observed. His voice was solemn, but his expression had subtle shades of amusement.

"No, you're right." Jack shifted, feeling an uncomfortable need to defend himself. "But anyway, he's the one that suggested it."

Teal'c's eyebrow inched up.

"Er, not suggested that, but suggested, you know, doing things that we wouldn't otherwise."

"So this is not something that you would want to do normally?" It was a question, but something in Teal'c's expression said he already suspected the answer.

Jack thought, I do not want to be having this conversation right now, but he said, "Want to, maybe. But I wouldn't. Couldn't. Not outside of this stupid Groundhog Day loop. It's not something I can have. Which reminds me, I can't order you to forget, but don't mention this ever."

Teal'c frowned, obviously baffled.

"We have rules," Jack said. "About people getting involved with people under their command, and also with people getting involved with, uh, people of the same gender. Daniel's both. Doesn't matter what I wan't, I can't touch him, not when there are consequences."

"I understand. I will not speak of this." Teal'c's expression shifted into the 'humans are crazy' look he got sometimes. "Both types of relationships are common on Chulak, sometimes even expected. In fact, Bra'tac and I--"

Jack clamped his hands over his ears and gave Teal'c a look of mock disgust. "I don't want to hear it," he said, because honestly, the thought of Bra'tac in any sort of sexual situation did not give the best mental images...

Teal'c smirked, but didn't finish what he was saying.

#
225:

"Jack, you're in my chair."

"Yep." Jack, legs propped up on Daniel's desk, beamed at him. "So I was thinking maybe a formal wedding... we'd have to figure out which one of us wears the dress, of course, but Teal'c as bridesmaid and Sam as best man; it'd work, dontcha think?"

Daniel stared at him like he'd lost his mind. "What are you talking about?"

"Would you rather elope?" Jack asked, all innocence. "'Cause really, I could do that too."

Daniel stared at him some more. "Uh. Jack," he said, in the sort of voice you used for little children or crazy people. "Are you feeling all right?"

"Just wonderful," Jack informed him cheerfully. "Today's just been a really long day."

"I see," Daniel said, in the sort of voice that meant he didn't. "Uh, do you maybe want to..." He gestured over his shoulder. "...go visit Doctor Fraiser? Just in case?"

"Tomorrow," Jack said breezily.

#
228:

"I've spoken to Hammond," Jack said, lying cheerfully. "He's giving us the day off tomorrow."

"Oh," Daniel said, and blinked, puzzled. "Why?"

"Tell you tomorrow."

"Okay," Daniel said, sounding extremely doubtful. "So why are you telling me this?"

Jack kicked Daniel's office door shut and all but leered at him. "Because," he said, advancing on Daniel, "you're coming over to my place right now, and staying for dinner. Tomorrow."

"I am?"

"Yes," Jack said, and he proceeded to tell Daniel exactly what they would do in the time in between. Some of it, at least. Daniel's gaze never left his face. "And there could be other things," Jack finished in a low voice.

"Like?" Daniel prompted.

"Like this," Jack said, and brushed his lips against Daniel's. "Or more."

"Jack," Daniel said, and his hands went to Jack's chest, palms flat. Not pushing, just keeping space between them.

"I know what I'm doing," Jack said. "I know what I want. I know what you want. We've done this before."

"We have?"

"Sort of. Trust me," Jack said, as always, and as always, Daniel did after a moment's wary hesitation.

"What do you want, Jack?" he asked.

"What do you think I want?"

Daniel's mouth quirke. "I can think of a few things," he said lightly, and then the smile vanished. He rested one hand lightly, hesitantly, on the back of Jack's neck. "Are you sure about this?"

"Always," Jack said. Daniel's touch on his neck sent shivers down his spine. Taking the gesture as an answer of sorts to the proposal, Jack asked, "Are you?"

"I think so," Daniel said. "Ask me tomorrow. I'll be more sure then."

#
230:

"Tomorrow," Jack promised.

"There are only twenty-four hours in a day, Jack," Daniel said, half teasing.

Jack thought, Not always.

#
233:

"We should probably begin to break the loop, O'Neill," Teal'c said quietly.

"Yes," Jack said. "Tomorrow."

"There will be no tomorrow while we are stuck like this. Only today."

Jack gave a faint smile. "You're the first person that's pointed that out."

"Indeed."

#
236:

"Daniel."

"Yes, Jack?"

I love you.

I want to keep today going forever.

"Nothing."

#
236.9:

Jack said nothing for a long time, and Teal'c waited in companionable silence.

"The loop's about to start again."

"Yes," Teal'c said, "it is."

"Next time..." Jack closed his eyes, feeling suddenly tired. It had been far too long since he'd slept. "Next time, we work on ending this damn thing. I want to go home."

After a long moment, Teal'c inclined his head.

#

Somewhere around the 237th loop, they went back to P4X 639, and Jack said, "Let her go."

There was no 238th loop. But there would, finally, be a tomorrow.

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