Title: Barista 24-- Comfort Food
Season: Season 3
Spoilers: Forever In A Day
Rating: PG
Category: General, Angst

Author's Notes: You guys know how I like to shake things up every now and then right? Well for this little Barista, we're going to try a little third person POV. Kira and her usual 1st person observations will return next time.

Sam parked her bike a few blocks from the shop and pulled off her helmet. Running a hand through her hair, she secured her bike and stashed her helmet in the lock box. Feeling a little uncomfortable walking across a crowded arcade dressed in leather, Sam skirted the public square and walked down a back alley towards Victor's coffee shop.

She was still more than a little irked at Janet for making her leave base last night. So what if she had been hovering around Daniel's side for the last 72 hours? Her plants had once survived almost 2 weeks without water, they could survive a couple of days. Why'd she have to leave and not the Colonel? And what about Teal'c? Sam was certain Janet would never ask Teal'c to leave.

Teal'c. She had tried talking to Teal'c several times in the last few days but he remained as stoic as ever- maybe even more so. He would sit for endless hours staring at Daniel in silent mediation. Sam couldn't tell if he was kel'no'reeming or simply thinking. She knew she couldn't possibly imagine how Sha're's death must be effecting him. Hopefully the Colonel had been able to get him to talk. "Right." Sam muttered audibly to herself shaking her head. As if the Colonel was Mr. Communication himself. No, talking about issues and feelings was something Daniel did. And it scared the hell out of her that he wasn't doing so now.

Sam looked at her watch and determined that she still had two hours to kill before Janet would allow her on base. That should be plenty of time to pick up what was needed. Comfort food. Lots and lots of comfort food. And in Daniel's case comfort food was not comfort food without coffee- specifically, Kira's coffee. Sam couldn't think of anything Daniel might like better than a nice bag of freshly ground coffee from his favorite coffee shop.

As she stepped through the front door, Sam suddenly frowned in realization. What had she thinking? Coffee and chocolate walnut cookies couldn't possibly offer Daniel any semblance of comfort! Nothing could alter the reason why Daniel was stuck in the infirmary with a large blistering burn etched into his forehead and an impossible weight upon his heart. This was ridiculous! Sam turned to leave.

"Hey Sam!" Kira called out cheerfully, catching sight of the tall blonde major walking through the front door.

"Almost made it." Sam muttered to herself as she did her best to appear happy to see the young Barista.

"Hi Kira." Sam said flatly. Try as she might, she couldn't sound carefree and happy in her greeting. Kira picked up on Sam's mood straight away.

"Sam, what's wrong?" Not only was Sam not smiling, but she looked like she had just lost her best friend. Instantly Kira paled. Ohmygod. Daniel! Where was Daniel? She glanced outside to confirm that Daniel really wasn't with her.

"It's about Daniel isn't it?" Kira asked softly trying to quell the feeling of dread pooling in her stomach. Sam nodded and clenched her jaw tightly to keep the tears that threatened to fall at bay. She was not going to lose it in a coffee shop!

"I'll be right back Sam." Kira said in a rush as she walked briskly towards the back room blinking rapidly. She had no idea what was going on, so it was no good to get all upset now. She did know that there was no way she was going to talk to Sam while she was slated to work the espresso machine.

"Louise!" Kira called out as she spied her friend crouched down on her knees counting coffee cups. "Can you come out and cover the bar for a few minutes?" Louise took one look at her friend's pinched face and nodded.

"Just let me wash my hands." Louise said heading towards a small sink in the corner.

"Thanks Louise." Kira said to her friend as she untied her apron and headed back towards the store. "I'll come in on Saturday and finish up the inventory." She called out behind her as she made her way towards Sam. Her voice sounded so calm and normal and Kira marveled at her ability to remain rationale when inside she was ready to burst.

"Don't worry about it Kree." Louise said as she walked towards the register. It didn't escape Kira's notice that Sam visibly tensed at the sound of Kira's nickname. What the hell was with these military sorts and ‘kree' anyhow? "Take all the time you need."

"Would you like anything to drink?" Kira asked leading Sam to a quiet table in the back of the store. She suddenly felt the need to delay the discussion with Sam. God. What if Daniel had died? He couldn't have died, right?


"I'm fine Kira." Sam said shaking her head no.

"No Sam, you're not." Kira said shaking her head. Something was seriously wrong and she needed to find out what. But first…

"Well, I need something to drink, can I bring you something as well?"

"Sure." Sam agreed recognizing the need for Kira to do something. "A cup of coffee would be great." Kira turned around to stand up only to have Louise set down a cup of both tea and coffee in front of them.

"It's just black." Louise explained to Sam as she pushed the cup towards her. "I knew what Kree here would want and I just assumed that you weren't one of those weird people who don't like coffee."

"I'm not weird." Kira said absently cupping the warm drink with both hands.

"Sure you're not Kree." Louise said rolling her eyes. "Being Assistant Manager of a coffee shop and not drinking coffee is perfectly normal…" She said under her breath as she walked back to the register.

"When did you become Assistant Manager Kira?" Sam asked taking the opportunity to make small talk.

"Sometime last year." Kira said off handedly as she sipped her tea. "Sam," Kira said looking up and meeting Sam's eyes, "What happened to Daniel? Did he have another accident?"

"Kind of." Sam said looking down at her coffee. Kira resisted the urge to make another smart-ass comment about government agencies and their weird secrecy issues. The look on Sam's face was enough to convince her to just let that little bit of intrigue go for the moment.

"Is he in the hospital?" Kira asked trying to keep calm; Sam nodded.

"Is it serious?" Sam bit her lip considering what to tell the obviously distraught young woman. Suddenly a voice was heard across the room,

"Carter, what the hell are you doing here?" Jack O'Neill boomed out from the front of the store.

Sam whipped her head around and stared in disbelief at her disheviled CO still dressed in base attire.


"Carter?" Jack asked still confused as hell at seeing her sitting with Kira. This place wasn't anywhere near where Sam lived.

And, hold on, was she wearing leather?

"Who's with Daniel?" Sam said standing up suddenly and swaying slightly at the sudden movement. She couldn't bear the thought of her friend waking up alone. She really hoped the Colonel had missed her little wobble. Sam made a mental note to grab an apple or something. She hated the fact that her body seemed to have something against low blood sugar.

"T..Murray." Jack said quietly grabbing a seat neat to the two women. He hadn't missed how crappy Sam looked (leather pants not withstanding) and hoped the little woozy spell there was simply from standing up too quickly. "What are you doing here Sam?" Jack asked gently, completely ignoring Kira for the moment. "Have you eaten today? Didn't Fraiser order you to head on home?"

"I did go home Sir." Sam said scrupulously, completely ignoring the Colonel's first comment.

"To change apparently." Jack said with a slight cock of his head as he gave Sam a quick once over; Sam had the good graces to blush.

"I just felt so useless Sir." Sam explained. "I needed to process everything that had happened."

"And you felt the need to do that in leather Carter?" Jack asked smiling slightly.

"Motorcycle Sir." Sam explained.


Kira had patiently listened as Sam and Jack talked, but now she was growing anxious. "What the hell happened with Daniel?" She asked more sharply then she intended.

"Carter?" Jack queried.

"I haven't really said anything yet Sir."

"Would you guys just stop and tell me what's going on!" Kira said angrily. "Daniel is obviously hurt, now can you guys tell me how badly?!" Jack exchanged glances with Sam and silently agreed to be the one to fill her in.

"You knew that Daniel was married, right?" Jack asked. Kira nodded.

"Three days ago Daniel's wife Sha're was killed." He explained softly. Sam closed her eyes at the unwanted vision of Daniel lying curled up on his side, reaching out towards the still body of his wife.

Kira blinked not quite comprehending what Jack was saying. "Daniel's wife was killed." She repeated, still confused. What had Daniel's wife had to do with Daniel's injury?

"I don't understand," Kira said looking first from Jack and then back to Sam. "If Daniel's wife was killed, how did Daniel end up hurt?"

"He was there Kira." Jack explained patiently. "He…Things happened that were out of Daniel's control and while Daniel was…" Jack growled in frustration- he so hadn't planned on having to explain this to someone not affiliated with the SGC. He unhappily played his trump card. "What happened is classified Kira." Jack said with another sigh watching the look of hurt and frustration flash across Kira's face. "Just know that Daniel was seriously injured while trying to get his wife back." That was the honest to god truth. The fact that he was trying to get his wife back from the Goa'uld enslaving her body was something he just couldn't explain.

"Is he going to be all right?" Kira asked in a small voice looking down at her tea.

"Yes, he is." Jack said pointedly looking at both Kira and Sam. "In the meantime," He continued trying to put a positive spin on the day's events, "it looks like Major Carter had the same idea I had with bringing Daniel some of your coffee."

"It won't bring Sha're back Sir." Sam said sadly shaking her head.

"No, it won't Carter." Jack agreed seriously. "But it might make Danny smile a little- even if it's just for a moment. And that's all we can hope for right now."

"Yes Sir." Sam said with another sigh. All of this was just too messed up. Teal'c shooting Sha're? How had Daniel been able to forgive him so completely?

"You sure he's ok?" Kira asked again needing to hear it again from Jack.
"He'll be fine Kira." Jack said resting a hand on the young woman's shoulder.

"I'll go get you some coffee then." Kira said standing up and heading towards a very confused looking Louise.

"Better make it decaf!" Jack shouted over his shoulder.

"Colonel Jack," Kira called out as she looked up from a large bin of coffee beans. "Daniel has been injured at least four times since I've known him. Don't you think I know by now what he can and can't drink after an injury?" She gave Jack a small smirk and dug back into the bin.

"Carter, there is something fundamentally wrong with a Barista knowing about Daniel's medical conditions." Jack griped stealing a sip of Sam's coffee.

"Damn, that's good." Jack said taking another large gulp.

"Sir!" Sam chastised.

"Don't think I missed how you neglected to answer my question about food Major." Jack said handing back the nearly empty cup to Sam.

"No Sir." Sam said resisting the urge to slouch down in her chair like a truant schoolgirl.

"Carter, you need to eat."

"And you need to shower." Sam said in return. Seeing the look of shock on her CO's face, Sam added, "Sir."

"Excuse me Major?" Jack said bristling.

"Colonel," Sam said gently running through the 10 sure-fire ways to disarm an angry CO. "It's obvious that Janet sent you home for a rest as well. Judging from your attire, you left in a bit of a hurry that's all."

"All she said was that I'd feel better after I spent some time at home." Jack paused and looked at Sam was a twinkle in his eye. "I had planned to go home, shower and change and then head straight back."

"Very sneaky Sir." Sam said with a small smile. She seriously doubted whether Janet would let Jack back into the infirmary if he returned so quickly.

"Here you go!" Kira said suddenly surprising both Jack and Sam. "1/4 pound freshly ground decaf Sumatra/Columbian and a little packet of those chocolate covered espresso beans Daniel likes so much." Her voice drops to a whisper as she leans her head in. "They aren't decaf, so hide them from Doctor Janet."

"Will do Kira!" Jack says affectionately as he gathers up the small bundles.

"I got here first, Sir." Sam says as she reached into her jacket pocket for her wallet.

"Yeah, but I just drank all your coffee Carter." Jack said pulling out his own wallet and handing Kira a $20 bill. "Keep the change Kira."

"Thanks Jack." Kira said giving him a small smile as she walked the officers out. "Tell Daniel to get better soon, ok?"

"I'm sure he'll be by as soon as Fraiser and her goons release him Kira." Jack said as he opened the door for Sam and himself.

"So Carter," Jack said as they walked down the alleyway towards Sam's bike. "What do you say to meeting up for a bite of lunch before heading back to the SGC?"

"Only after you take a shower," Sam said with a twinkle in her eye resisting the urge to wrinkle her nose. "Sir."

A/N: This might be it for a while kids. The whole school thing has started again in earnest and I'm a little dismayed (read: Freaked Out) at the amount of reading. On the plus side, the class in Social Ethics looks mighty interesting and I'm certain I'll be able to (successfully) argue why I think the U.S. PATRIOT Act sucks eggs when I'm through.

Completed January 10, 2004

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