Title: Barista 46 -- Crossing the Rubicon
Season: 5
Spoilers: I'm Not Saying
Category Stop asking. I'm not going to tell you.
Rating: See above. Why am I being so enigmatic? See here

Author's Notes: This one isn't written like a traditional Barista (Kira, first person), and reads pretty much like an everyday Stargate story (third person, team). I honestly can't recall if I've done one like this before. Regardless, this one is fun and a wee bit pivotal. (Damn. That was a hint, wasn't it?) Hope you enjoy reading as much as I did writing it.

"Good morning, campers!" Jack O'Neill said jovially, as he sauntered into the gate room promptly at 0600. "Everyone ready for a fun-filled day on P7X-…" he looked at Major Carter expectantly.

"431 sir," Sam replied with a smile before continuing. "It's approximately 0900 on the planet, and we should have between four and a half and five hours of sunlight in order to reach our destination and set up camp." She was fairly certain the Colonel knew exactly where they were going, and why they needed to leave so early (elliptically speaking, the planet was incredible!), but if he liked to play the bumbling colonel every now and then, she wouldn't call his bluff. This was of course what a good 2IC did.

"I was just about to say that, Carter," Jack said with a wave of his hand. He adjusted the brim of his cap and seeing that his team was present and accounted for, gave Walter the signal to dial it up.

"Sleep well, Teal'c?" Jack asked conversationally as the gate began to move.

"I successfully kelnoreemed, O'Neill," Teal'c replied in his usual even tone. After all these years, Jack O'Neill was still somewhat of an enigma to Teal'c. He could remain on watch for hours without scarcely moving, yet seldom could stay still (or quiet) for the sixteen seconds the gate took to lock onto an address. Curious.

"One of these days, I'll give that another go," Jack remarked as the third chevron locked. He leaned in slightly towards Teal'c. "I don't have to shave my head, right?"

Daniel listened to the morning banter dispassionately and concentrated hard on not yawning. It really was unfair how chipper Jack O'Neill was at 6 AM. Jack had this uncanny ability to not only come instantly awake no matter what the hour, but usually to do so in a good mood. Well, that is unless there was a very good reason for him not to be in a good mood. Say, waking up in a Goa'uld cell, or meeting the Tok'ra (especially Anise) – these tended to make Jack a little grumpy. No, Jack O'Neill was definitely a morning person.

Daniel Jackson on the other hand, was not.

Oh sure, he had worked on many digs. Often due to the location and extreme temperatures, Daniel usually had to be up with the sun (if not before). Many times, Daniel completely forgot about the early hour because he was so excited to get started on his work. However, that didn't make him necessarily a morning person. No, in order for him to be a true morning person, Daniel needed coffee - preferably a double tall Americano from Victors. Making his own using the French Press Sam had gotten him all those years ago was good – but it just wasn't the same.

And he never had enough refills.

Daniel sighed and mentally crossed his fingers that the mission would go smoothly and they would be back by Wednesday; he really needed to talk to Kira. Daniel frowned slightly as he felt the outlines of a single piece of paper in his front jacket pocket. On second thought, he really needed to talk to Jack.

The bad news was that the source of the naquadah readings was a good 15 kilometers from the gate and the solar day ended in less than six hours. The good news was that it was a beautiful day.

Jack idly thumbed the safety of his P90 and wondered what was going on with Daniel. Yeah, sure this mission wasn't archaeological in nature, but Daniel usually had plenty to say about the planet. He hadn't spoken more than a few words to either Sam or Teal'c, and hadn't said anything to Jack except to indicated when he needed to pee.

Something was going on, and as leader of SG-1 (not to mention Daniel's friend), it was up to Jack to figure it out. He slowed down his pace until he and Daniel were walking side by side.

"Nice day," Jack said conversationally. He grimaced even as the words came out of this mouth; he so sucked at small talk.

"Yeah, it is," Daniel replied sullenly, as he continued walking straight ahead. He was too lost in his own thoughts to really pay any attention to Jack. Jack was slightly surprised (and more than a little proud) to see that although Daniel's thoughts seemed to be a million miles away, he was holding his weapon correctly and his eyes really did appear to be tracking the terrain ahead.

Wow. He really does know what he's doing these days.

Deciding to forego small talk completely, Jack stopped short and turned to face Daniel. "You wanna tell me what's going on?" Daniel frowned.

"Well, I was walking…" Daniel began.

"Oh, cut the crap, Daniel," Jack interrupted good-naturedly. Daniel might be in a foul mood, but Jack felt just fine. "Something has been bugging you since we left the SGC – and it's more than the fact that we left too early for you to get a decent cup of coffee." In spite of himself, Daniel half-smiled. Jack knew about that, did he?

"You couldn't convince Hammond to let us leave just thirty minutes later?" Daniel whined, trying to keep the topic off of him. He had actually forgotten all about his missed coffee, but now that Jack had brought it up…

"Hey, it was Carter's call," Jack backpedaled, holding up a hand in defense. Okay, so technically it was his call because he was CO, but it was Carter who had told him about the three-hour "gate lag" between worlds. Not to mention the fact that each "day" on this world was just sixteen hours long; six hours of sunlight and ten hours of darkness. Was it his fault that it made the most sense to get an early start?

"Yeah, I know," Daniel replied, having already forgotten the pain of foregoing his morning coffee.

"So, what's up?" Daniel stared into his friend's eyes and knew he couldn't wait any longer. After three hours of walking, he was pretty certain the planet was Goa'uld- free and there didn't seem to be any human colonies close to the gate. No major predators, no sentient vines… now was as good a time as any. Daniel reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out a piece of paper. An extremely well-read piece of paper.

"Do you know what this is, Jack?" Daniel asked, waving the paper in his friend's face.

"No Daniel, I can't say that I do," Jack replied calmly. Jack's first reaction was ‘divorce papers', but of course that couldn't be it. Funny what comes back to a guy after six years…

"At first I thought it was a joke," Daniel began as he started pacing up and down the mossy floor of the forest. "I mean, it had to be a joke…" Daniel's voice trailed off as he glanced down at the paper in his hands.

"Daniel, what does the letter say?" Jack asked gently. Whatever it was, it was obviously making Daniel very upset. Ipso facto - Jack was now upset

"It's from the CIA." Jack's brain froze for a moment as he did a mental double take. Well that was unexpected.

"The CIA wrote you a letter?" Jack asked, needing clarification. It was bad enough having the NID breathing down their necks, if his team was being harassed by the Central Intelligence Agency (although what the hell would those spooks want with them?), Jack needed to know.

"Yeah," Daniel answered morosely, glancing down at the paper again. "Jack, they even had my current address!" Considering how many times Daniel had moved or been declared dead, this was actually quite impressive.

"What does the letter say, Daniel?" Jack repeated, looking at his friend expectantly.

"It's a reference check," Daniel replied darkly as he started walking again.

"A reference check," Jack repeated matching Daniel's pace.


"Someone you know is looking to work for the CIA?" Daniel had oodles of scientists working under him. While Jack couldn't imagine anyone quitting a job at the SGC in order to work for the CIA, stranger things had happened. Say aliens building the pyramids for example.

"Someone we both know," Daniel clarified. He gave Jack a quick glance as he continued to walk forward. For the life of him, Jack could not think of anyone they both knew (at least someone close) who would ever want to work for the CIA – especially someone who would ask Daniel for a reference check before himself. Unless it was a scientist…

"Dr. Lee!" Jack said, snapping his fingers. "You didn't give him that raise he asked for and…"

"It wasn't Bill, Jack," Daniel scoffed in reply. "Besides, I did give him a 6% raise. He deserved it."

"You did?"


"I think Lee makes more than me," Jack mused aloud.

"I still make more than Bill, Jack."

"So, only you make more than me, then." Jack clarified.

"Well, I did decipher the Stargate after all…" This was a familiar game for the two men. Daniel actually did make more than Jack – but he didn't have a military pension nearly as good. Neither of the men were materialistic, and neither spent even half the money they earned (saving the world usually resulted in a hefty Christmas bonus), so the slight discrpency in pay wasn't a big deal.

"I give up Daniel," Jack said after thinking about it for a few more seconds. "Who do we both know that is applying to the CIA?"



"Kira," Daniel affirmed with a nod.

"Our Kira?" Jack repeated, still not believing what Daniel was telling him.

"Yeah." Both men walked in silence for several moments.

"Intelligence Officer?" Jack asked, curiosity piqued.

"It doesn't say," Daniel replied holding up the letter to read for the thirty-second time. "I don't think so."

"Well, we'll just assume no on that one, shall we?" Jack added. "After all, she has known us for nearly five years and I'd hate to think we were some kind of test…"

"Jack, you're missing the point!" Daniel cried, stopping again as he faced his friend. "Kira wants to work for the CIA!"

"And you don't want Kira to work for the CIA," Jack clarified.

"God, of course not!" Daniel replied vehemently. "Do you?"

"Daniel," Jack answered patiently. "If I remember correctly, you also didn't want her to work for the Air Force or any branch of the military service."

"It's a post 9/11 world, Jack!" Daniel replied in a loud voice. "Of course, I don't want her working for the military!"

"She's going to graduate soon, Daniel," Jack continued, in a rational voice. "She'll need to do more with her life than make a damn fine cup of coffee."

"I know that!" Daniel cried angrily. He just didn't know what to do about it. Or rather he did…

"Where do you see her working, Daniel?" Jack asked softly. Being the smart guy that he was, Jack had a fairly good idea of what Daniel was going to say next.

"Here, Jack." Daniel let out a long sigh and stopped moving.

"P7X-431?" Jack knew it was the wrong thing to say, but he just couldn't resist.

"Jack, would you be serious!" Daniel was in no mood for games. "I see her working with us. Here. Earth-here, that is. At the SGC." Jack nodded and looked thoughtful. He took a moment to look around. Ah trees...

"Carter, Teal'c you copy?" Jack asked as he keyed his mike.

"We copy, sir," Sam replied.

"I am here, O'Neill."

"We're going to stop here for the night. Why don't you and Teal'c do a perimeter sweep while Daniel and I get the tents set up?" Sam was a very good 2IC; she completely understood the Colonel's veiled order. He wanted to talk to Daniel. Alone.

"Understood, sir," she replied. "Teal'c and I will circle around and come back to you from the south. I anticipate it will take us twenty minutes."

"I believe it will be closer to thirty minutes, MajorCarter," Teal'c added. Jack looked away so Daniel couldn't see his lips twist upwards in a small smile – his team rocked! Daniel meanwhile had taken off his backpack and had begun to rummage around in search of the elusive tent.

"That would be great, T'. Yell if you need anything – O'Neill out."

"I think Teal'c has the tents," Daniel said, as he looked up from his half-open backpack. "I have the stove and fuel, Sam has the food, you have the.."


"Well, you have to have one of the tents," Daniel corrected. "Because Teal'c shouldn't be carrying both of them…"



"Come here." Jack waved his friend over to a "clean" bit of a log. "Pull up a stump." Daniel's shoulders slumped as he allowed his pack to fall over and plopped down next to Jack on a mossy bit of wood.

"You want Kira to work for the SGC," Jack repeated.

"Yes." Daniel picked up a broken stick and began to dig in the dirt like a petulant child.

"You want Kira to work for you at the SGC." It was best if Jack fully understood the situation at hand.

"Yes." More digging. Had Daniel not been so intent on his digging, he would have seen Jack break into a very large and sincere grin.

"Well, it's about frickin' time!" Jack declared, slapping Daniel on the back. The jolt, combined with Jack's words caused Daniel to nearly fall of his log.

"What did you say?"

"You heard me," Jack replied, eyes dancing with merriment.

"You want Kira to work for the SGC?" Daniel knew Jack liked Kira, but he never imagined that he would agree to this.

"Daniel, I knew I wanted Kira to work at the SGC since the day your appendix decided to give up the ghost and Kira was there to save your ass." Jack grinned. "And not for the first time, I might add." Daniel was speechless.

"You've wanted Kira at the SGC for over a year?!"


"And you never said anything?" Jack chuckled as he shook his head.

"Daniel, I take it you want her with you – your team, I mean." Jack was 99.9% certain that Daniel and Kira's friendship was platonic, but there was that very strange day after Shifu…

"Of course I want her on my team!" Daniel cried, not catching any of Jack's innuendos. "She's brilliant, Jack! She has this amazing ability to look at a new language and figure out how to not just speak it – but organize it. Catalog it – make it available for others. I need someone like that on my team."

"Then she's yours," Jack said simply. "I mean, if she agrees that is."

"That's it?" Daniel was stunned at how easy this was.

"Daniel," Jack said with a sigh, "I did a cursory background on Kira two years ago."

"What?!" Instantly, Daniel was on edge.

"Hold on – hold on, let me explain."

"Please do." Now this sounded like the Jack he knew.

"When the hell did you lose your trust, Daniel?" Jack asked, completely taken back. He knew that Daniel had been thrown a curve ball here, but seriously, there was something going on with young Doc Jackson. Jack made a mental note to try to figure it out in the next couple of weeks. He knew it couldn't possibly be all about Kira. Jack tried a different tack.

"Daniel," he started in a sincere voice. "It isn't unusual at all for me, or anyone in the higher ranks of the military, to run background checks on civilians that are spending a lot of time with our people."


"Really," Jack affirmed with a nod. "Remember last year when that that new guy, Collins I think his name was, left the SGC without notice?" Daniel vaguely remembered the incident. Gary Collins was a civilian contractor who had worked in biomedical. He nodded at Jack to continue.

"Well, it turned out that he was having a relationship with a cocktail waitress across town." Daniel looked at him expectantly. "She wasn't a cocktail waitress, Daniel."



"Kira, is not NID, Jack."

"Of course she isn't, Daniel! I'm just making a point here."

"Your point being that you check up on people?"


"You just randomly decided to do a background check on our Kira?"

"God, Daniel! You can be so damn dense sometimes!" Jack cried in exasperation. "I wanted her to work for the SGC!"

"You did?"

"Of course, I did! I knew right away that she wouldn't be interested in the military, but I was sure hoping she'd continue studying languages. And do you know how long those background checks can take…"

"Well then why didn't you tell me, Jack?!" Daniel was pissed. Pissed that Jack had run a check on Kira. Pissed that he hadn't told Daniel about it. Pissed that…

"Because Daniel, I knew she'd be your employee."

"So?" Daniel simmered with belligerence and hurt.

"Daniel," Jack said taking his friends by both shoulders and roughly turning him towards himself. "She would be working for you. I couldn't very well tell you whom to hire."

"Since when has that…" Daniel's voice suddenly lost all traces of anger and animosity as he realized that Jack was right. "You've never told me who I can or can't hire." Daniel stated quietly.


"In fact, you've never bothered me at all about my staff." Realization hit Daniel like a pail of cold water.

"Uh uh," Jack agreed shaking his head. "I might have annoyed you about everything else under God's green earth, but never that."

"No," Daniel said nearly inaudibly. "You never have." A great whoosh of air whistled through his teeth as his head dropped heavily towards his hands. "I'm such an ass."

"Occasionally," Jack agreed amicably.

"So, let me get this straight, Jack," Daniel began. "You ran a check on Kira two years ago."


"And you've been waiting all this time for me to come to you and say I wanted her on my team?"

"Pretty much," Jack said shrugging. "I was curious which direction she would go with graduate school, but after she went to Egypt, I knew it was pretty much a foregone conclusion that she'd have to work for us."


"You really didn't become a Colonel because of your looks, did you Jack?"

"Well, it didn't hurt.." Jack replied smiling, mentally sighing with the knowledge that everything was going to be okay. At least today anyhow. Off in the distance they could hear Teal'c and Sam returning. He helped Daniel to his feet as Teal'c appeared through the trees.

"Everything all right?" Sam asked worriedly. Something had obviously been bothering Daniel for a while, and Sam hoped he and the Colonel had talked about it.

"I believe so," Jack replied. "We good, Daniel?" He looked a little uncertainly at his friend.

"We're good," Daniel replied with an affirmative nod. He looked down at the crumpled paper in his hand.

"So, what are you going to do?" Jack asked. Now that Daniel knew that he wanted Kira at the SGC as well, Daniel had some decisions to make. Daniel looked at his team, eyes twinkling with delight.

"Make her a better offer."

So are you smiling? Grinning even? My goal here is to have each and every one of you positively bouncing up and down in happiness (I figure if I am, it's only fair you are too). Ah, but how is Daniel going to tell her? And what will our girl say? These, and other questions will be answered in the next exciting installment of.. The Barista! (Lol. Sorry - I couldn't resist!) Please let me know what you thought of this - there were so many ways this could have played out, and I really want to know if this worked for you. And if you have time - please sign my guestbook! It's shiny new and makes me happy. *g*

Thank you to Flatkatsi, Redbyrd and Shado for their pre-posting advice and a very special thank you to Louise who was with me all those months ago when the idea for this one struck. Thanks for the unflagging support Lou!

And just in case you're curious as to the title, here's the definition: The Rubicon is a river in Italy and (so the saying goes) the one that Julius Caesar led his army over the river and thus began a civil war. In common vernacular, the phrase is used to mean "take the decisive step", "bite the bullet", or "make one's move". Now does it make sense?

Completed August 12, 2005

Home |Series Home | Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Email me

Web Counter by TrafficFile.com