Title: Barista 23-- Bar Talk
Season: Season 3
Spoilers: Point Of View
Rating: PG
Category: General, Humor

Author's Notes: This is a Point Of View story, so there is a tiny bit of implied shippiness. I swear it is very, very subtle so don't let that stop you from reading further, ok?

I know this type of thing happens all the time, but I really never thought it would happen to me- at least not at the still nubile age of 21.

I've been stood up.

I swirl the watery cream remaining in my white russian and contemplate heading home. Ever sat by yourself in a semi-crowded bar? Give it a shot sometime and see how much of a loser you feel like. I self-consciously straighten my knee length black dress and vow to never go on a blind date again. Or at least not one arranged by a casual acquaintance.

I sigh again and look around the comfortably furnished room. Well at least he picked a good bar. I can't help but smile to myself as I recall the last time I had been to O'Malleys. I seriously doubt I'll ever have another birthday party that will top that one! Hey! Maybe I'll get lucky and run into Daniel? I blush as I remember that rather fabulous dip and kiss he gave me last year. Daniel and I never really talked about it but apparently Stefan has the photos to prove it wasn't just an alcohol-induced fantasy. He only showed them to me once before tucking them into his back pocket and telling me I'll get them all later. Tease. Big, fat, faggy tease! Wonder how his boyfriends put up with him? I'm sure the fact that Stefan is in fact gorgeous, thin and has a smile that would melt icecaps has something to do with it. Bastard.

I shake myself out of Daniel memory number 21 and wonder if maybe I'll see Jack or Sam? Heck, I'll even take their friend Murray right about now.


Like they have nothing better to do than hang out at O'Malleys on a Wednesday night. I sigh and signal the barman for my tab. He's been looking at me a little funny all evening and I wonder if he thinks I'm underage or something. Nope. Not this time buddy. I sigh and chew on my remaining ice cubes.

God, I hate dating.

I had just bent down to get my purse when I hear them.

"We're not going to talk about it Daniel." Jack?

"Talk about what Jack?" Daniel!

"Exactly." Jack says with a finality that prohibits further discussion.

"Colonel. Dr. Jackson." The bartender says noticing Jack and Daniel. Wow. Guess the guys come in here more often than I thought. I debate whether I should make my presence known, but I'm kind of getting a kick out of seeing the ‘Jack and Daniel Show' in secret. Besides, I'm a good 4 stools down and a rather amorous (and tall) couple is sitting next to me blocking any real view Jack and Daniel might have of me. Plus there's the fact that I'm all dressed up and the guys aren't probably expecting to see their barista at 10 pm at their local haunt.

"Hey John." Jack says amicably as he and Daniel sit down at the edge of the bar.

"Your usual?" John asks.

Jack must have nodded. "Yeah- and some Bushmills on ice."

"Whiskey, Jack?" Daniel asks.

"You have a problem with that Daniel?" Jack counters.

"I'll be right back with your drinks Colonel. Daniel, you want a cider?"

"Sissy girly drink." Jack mutters under his breath. I can't be sure, but I think Daniel shoots Jack a dirty look.

"I'll have a glass of whatever amber you have on tap."

"Way to be a man, Daniel!" Jack declares. "Before you know it, you'll have chest hair and everything!" I snort loudly and quickly look down just in case they glance my way. I knew Jack had a sense of humor, but I never realized it was this evil. He and Stefan really should talk.

"Shut up Jack." Daniel says as if he's heard all of this before. "At least here I can count on some decent beer here and not that crap that you usually drink at home."

"Budweiser is not crap." Jack states authoritatively. "It's a good honest American beer.."

"That tastes like camel piss." Daniel finishes.

Before Jack can counter with what I'm sure would have been another zinger, the bartender returns with their drinks. I quietly order another one of my own and sit back and listen in.

"So." Daniel says taking a small sip of his beer and giving Jack a sideways look. "Dr. Carter."

Dr. Carter? Is he talking about Sam? But wouldn't he have said ‘Sam' or ‘Major Carter'?

"Daniel." Jack says in that scary quiet voice of his taking a sip of his whiskey.

"Yes, Jack?" Daniel replies clearly not deterred.

"We're not going there." He gives Daniel a very pointed look and I can almost imagine Jack holding up a finger or two in admonishment.

"Going where, Jack?" Daniel questions innocently. Even I can tell he is just being a smart ass.

"God, I hate it when you do that!" Jack declares loudly with a huff. He lowers his voice again. "There is nothing to discuss Daniel, so can you just drop it." Idly Jack grabs a handful of peanuts from the bar and dumps them on a napkin. He places two side by side and then flicks one quite soundly in Daniel's direction where it bounces off of his right cheek.

"Dammit Jack, that hurt." Daniel says testily rubbing his cheek.

Jack sounds contrite. "Sorry Daniel. I forgot." I steal another glance in their direction and am surprised to see a rather nasty looking abrasion on the side of Daniel's face. Man, being an archaeologist is rough! It looks like Daniel has been in an accident of some kind. Well, actually, it kind of looks like he was in a fight.

And I don't think Daniel won.

"You really need to learn to duck." Jack says affectionately eyeing Daniel's face as he takes another drink of his beer.

"Against 12?" Daniel counters.

"Couldn't have hurt."

"Right. I'm sure that would have made all the difference." Daniel says wryly.

"At least they didn't break your glasses this time." Jack continues. Daniel chuckles and then grimaces slightly as it obviously caused his face discomfort. Wonder what happened?

"You should hear my optometrist Jack! He thinks I'm the clumsiest guy on the planet!"

"You mean you aren't?" Jack counters obviously enjoying the little Dr. Jackson ribbing session.

"Not on purpose!" Daniel says whining a bit. "Is it my fault it seems to be a galactic rule to pick on the guy with glasses?"

"You could wear your contacts more often?" Jack offers helpfully.

"Jack, I'm an archaeologist- sticking a piece of plastic in my eye and then running around in the very gritty elements is just not my idea of a good time."

"So, what is your idea of a good time Dr. Jackson?" Jack asks with a grin. I can see that Daniel is now starting to get annoyed.

"Doctor. Carter." Daniel says enunciating the title and looking at Jack triumphantly as he takes another swig of his beer. Who the hell is this Dr. Carter person?! Jack is obviously annoyed that Daniel chose to bring back this topic of conversation.

"Drop it Daniel." Jack says looking down and swirling the ice around his glass.

"I'm just saying Jack that you didn't exactly pull away."

"Daniel, we are not going to discuss it." Jack replies clearly meaning every word. Whoever this Dr. Carter is or was, Jack clearly is uncomfortable talking about him.

Or her.

"Jack, have you at least talked to Sam about it?" Hmm. Now this is getting interesting.

Jack guffawed. "Right Daniel. ‘Hey Carter- listen, about that kiss I shared with your Doppelganger..' I'm sure that would go over really well." WHAT? Doppelganger? Does Sam have a twin sister or something? Wait a second, did Jack just say kiss?

"This is hard for her too Jack."

"Daniel," Jack says turning around in his stool to face his friend head on. I resist the urge to duck knowing that he can't possibly see me through the other couple. "What Carter and I have to deal with is absolutely nothing compared to what Dr. Carter went through. What Dr. Carter is going through right now."

"So you're saying it was a pity kiss?" Daniel probed.

"She kissed me Daniel." Jack says in exasperation.

"And you didn't exactly pull away Jack."

"For crying out loud Daniel, the woman just lost her entire…" He pauses considering his words. His voice softens noticeably. "She had just lost everything Daniel, I wasn't going to make it harder than it already was." Daniel ponders this for several seconds and nods.

"So what did you and the General talk about?" Daniel asks causally. Jack shoots Daniel a look that would wither lesser men and attempts to change the subject.

"Hockey scores."

"Uh huh." They sit for several moments in compatible silence.

"I seriously don't see Carter that way Daniel." Jack says finally.

"You sure?" Daniel asks without a hint of sarcasm. Jack sighs.

"Yes, I'm sure." Jack says sincerely. "I really am Daniel. I think I convinced Hammond but you'll need to talk to Carter and make sure she's ok with the whole thing."

"You can't?"

"I'm a Colonel Daniel- I delegate." Daniel rolls his eyes. Even from across the bar I could see him roll his eyes.

"This isn't something you should delegate Jack."

"This is something I totally need to delegate Daniel." Jack counters. "It's creepy enough as it is without getting Carter all weirded out…"

"I think we're a little too late for that Jack."

"Yeah." Jack agrees finishing his scotch and starting on his beer.

I stay at the bar for another 30 minutes or so catching snippets of their conversation as I try to ignore the rather blatant pick up lines that are coming at me from all sides. If the guys weren't old enough to be my father I might have been flattered.


I decide it's time to go when I notice that Romeo and Juliet (the couple on my left) are getting ready to leave as well. I don't want to risk having Jack and Daniel see me, so I pay my bill and gather my things. My back is turned away from the bar as I put on my sweater and catch one final snippet of conversation.

"Jack?" Daniel asks in a tone of voice that indicates he is seriously going for the jugular. It's that voice that says ‘I'm going to say something you really aren't going to like and there's nothing you can say to stop me.'

"Yes, Daniel?" Jack replies cautiously.

"Obviously you prefer blondes." Daniel states matter of factly.

"Daniel…" Jack begins tiredly. I take it we're back to that woman Jack kissed. Oops- sorry Jack. I mean the woman who kissed Jack.

"And of course, it's also blatantly apparent that you like tall blondes…" Blatantly apparent?

"Shut up Daniel."

"Outside of Kynthia of course, but there was definitely an extenuating circumstance surrounding that."

"Shut *up* Daniel." Jack tries again.

"But what I really want to know," Daniel continues pausing only long enough to insure he has Jack's complete attention. "Is whether you prefer her with long or short hair?"

"Check!" Jack shouts as I open the door and exit the bar.

Author's Musings (the extended version): For those unfamiliar, Bushmills is indeed a pretty good whiskey. (If you actually like whiskey) And an amber is a type of beer somewhat between a lager and a stout. I guess a bitter would be a pretty good approximation. Only a good tasting bitter!

I promised this series wouldn't get shippy, and I think I managed to remain true to the show (Roxie, you just let me know, ok?) BUT I *am* a shameless shipper and after watching this episode again, I realized that this is really where it all began. Sure Jack got an eyeful when SG-1 was captured by Hathor at the end of Season 2- but he was pretty much just being a guy oogling at a semi-clothed woman. The hug shared by those two in "Into the Fire" was pretty impressive, but I'll chock that up (if a non-shipper forces me to) to the fact that Jack had just risen from the dead and emotions were a bit…er…high.

But everything changed with this episode (IMO). Jack truly was confused about the possibility of him and Sam being together. You can totally see it on his face throughout the ep. And after the cat was let out of the bag with Kawalsky's "You think I would let my best friend's wife go back alone?" crack? Oh yeah. Now we have Sam completely confused as well and both of them are now considering the possibility. One alternate reality was a fluke, but two...? This is my attempt at playing with that. I seriously thought Jack needed to talk about what happened after this episode and Kira just happened to be the little lady to overhear a bit of it. *G*

Completed December 25, 2003

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