Title: Barista 49 -- Veritas
Season: 5
Spoilers: Could be
Category: I'm sure it's categorical
Rating: Somewhere between G and R.

Author's Notes: I will tell you this much – don't try to read this while ingesting food or drink. And you might not want to be in a public place. If you are, bring something for muffling purposes. Trust me on this.

For Kelly whose baby is due any day now (I made it, hon!) and Tes who shares not only my same birthday day, but the same year as well (scary!) Happy B-day! And thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who continues to read these.

Previously, on The Barista...

"See you." Daniel pushes the off button and stares at his phone; shaking his head slightly back and forth. He sighs and gives me a resigned look.

"Jack is on his way."

"Jack is on his way?" Is it just me, or does this seem odd?

"Yes," Daniel confirms, sighing again. "Your team, your disclosure," he mumbles just loud enough for me to hear. Huh? He ponders the situation for a moment and then glances at his watch and smiles. "Well, unless Jack has actually camped out at the coffee shop across the street," Daniel says optimistically, "I think we have some time." Um...time for what?

If I wasn't nervous before, I certainly am now. I abruptly put down my wine glass and head into Daniel's kitchen. I open a cupboard at random and surprise myself by finding what I am looking for on the first try.

"Kira, you need any help in there?" Daniel calls from the living room. I can hear him shuffling papers. Those papers are really starting to make me nervous.

"Just getting some water!" I yell back. I pull down a water glass and automatically open the refrigerator, forgetting for a moment that I'm not at home. I might keep filtered water in my fridge, but this doesn't mean Daniel will. Still, seeing as the fridge is open and all that, I'm curious as to what Daniel likes to eat. I peer inside.

Apparently, not much.

I balk a little as I spy a forlorn box of Arm & Hammer baking soda on the top shelf and assorted condiments interspersed with a few bottles of beer in the side baskets. Wow. Daniel wasn't kidding when he said he hadn't gone shopping. But then again, there's "shopping" and then there is "completely stocking my near empty refrigerator". Well, he had been gone for a few weeks, I reason. Trying not to think about it too much, I head to the sink and fill my glass with tap water. One of the perks of living in the Rockies; great tasting tap water.

"You really need to do some shopping, Daniel," I say, returning to the living room.

"Tomorrow," Daniel replies absently, not sounding even remotely concerned. "Kira, come sit over here," Daniel asks, patting the seat cushion next to him and picking up a manila folder. "I want to ask you something." I sit down expectantly, and take a small sip of the cool water. I don't think Daniel has any idea how confused all of this is making me. I know my face must show my mounting bewilderment as Daniel abruptly puts down that mysterious stack of papers.

"I'm really messing this up, aren't I?" I would agree with him, but seeing how I don't have a clue what he is talking about, I can only shrug noncommittally.

"Kira, I don't want you to work for the CIA," Daniel says with conviction.

"You kinda hinted at that before," I reply tentatively. "What do you have against the CIA?" Daniel shakes his head.

"It isn't that I have anything specifically against them Kira, it's just I can't really see you working for them."

"And why is that?" I reply defensively. I might not be as smart as Daniel, but I can hold my own. Does he really think I'll fail? Or is it that...

"Kira, whatever you are thinking right now, just stop," Daniel says, interrupting me. Sheepishly, I do just that.

"Why don't you want me to work for the CIA, Daniel?" I ask, as my palms begin to sweat. The air is filled with so much tension; I wouldn't be surprised if tendrils of electricity sprout up between us!

"Kira, ask me again what I do for a living," Daniel says abruptly. Huh? If Daniel were like a baseball game, I think this would be called, ‘a change up'.

"Excuse me?"

"Ask me what I do for a living," Daniel repeats. "No wait," Daniel says interrupting himself, as he stands up excitedly. "Kira, do you remember one day several years ago, when I found you sleeping in a library?" He is positively bursting to tell me something, but for the life of me, I don't have a clue what!

"I was working late, and you had a key..." I begin.

"Yes, yes," Daniel says, urging me to continue with little hand movements.

"We chatted for a bit at the library; went out to eat; and then you drove me home," I conclude.

"You forgot the middle part!" Daniel huffs in exasperation. I feel like an actor who just forgot her line - in a script that isn't even written yet! I know I'm looking more than a little frustrated now. Daniel, would you just TELL ME what the hell is going on?!

"Okay," Daniel says talking quickly. "You don't remember all the details, that's perfectly understandable." Gee, thank you for saying so. "You were doing some research on Babylon and I picked up your book and said something to you..." He waves his hand expectantly, hoping I can fill in the details. I stare at him blankly. "I said," Daniel begins, "how one day you and I are going to have a nice long conversation..."

"We've had lots of nice long conversations, Daniel," I reply, still bewildered.

"I said," Daniel repeats, still waving his hands as he begins to talk faster and faster. "That one day you and I were going to have a nice long conversation, even if I have to ask the President for permission." Ah! In a complete Road Runner cartoon moment, a light bulb appears above my head. I give Daniel a big smile. I might not remember the specifics, but that line I totally remember.

"Right!" I reply, laughing as I shake my head in disbelief – that was ages ago! "Forgive me for being a little slow, Daniel, but that was a long time ago."

"Perfectly understandable!" Daniel replies magnanimously.

"So has the President given you permission to have a nice long conversation with me?" I ask jokingly.

"Yes," Daniel replies with finality, splaying his hands happily outwards in a universal ‘eureka' way.

I blink.

"The President of the United States has given you permission to talk to me." If I wasn't sitting down already, I'm pretty sure I'd need to be about now.

"A sub-committee of the Joint Chiefs actually, but that's pretty close," Daniel replies offhandedly. He's obviously thrilled to be able to talk to me about this, and sits down next to me. Once again I do my gaping fish impression.

"Someone in our government has given you permission to talk with me," I repeat.

"Yes," Daniel says nodding.

"About what?" I ask.

"Ah, and that's the hundred thousand dollar question!" Daniel replies happily. I am now even more confused, but seeing Daniel sitting next to me, smiling as if he is about to fill me in on the biggest secret in the world – well, whatever it is, it can't be all that bad if it has Daniel so excited.

"Can you just tell me the answer first?" I ask hopefully.

"You just say yes, Kira," Daniel replies seriously. "Yes, there are some papers to sign, and yes, there are a thousand questions you will want answers to, but all I need for you to do at this very moment is to tell me yes."


Daniel Jackson is asking me to marry him.

Before I can even think of how to respond to all of this, we hear pounding on Daniel's front door. Loud pounding. "Great timing, Jack," Daniel grumbles, giving my icy hands a little squeeze as he stands up to answer the door. I'm left sitting on the couch, my brain racing a million miles a minute.

This makes no sense at all.

"Hi kids," Jack says jovially as Daniel opens the door. "Having fun?"

"As always Jack, you do seem to have impeccable timing." I'm certain Daniel must have flashed Jack one of those, ‘I'm really annoyed with you' looks, but I'm too busy doing my guppy impression to pay it any attention.

"Be nice, Daniel," Jack admonishes. "I come baring gifts." My mind is still on other things, so I don't see the freezer bag he waves in front of Daniel's face.

"Hi Kira," Jack greets, completely oblivious to my sheer and utter bewilderment. He walks right pass me and into Daniel's kitchen. He quickly sticks the ice cream in the freezer and then opens the fridge and helps himself to a beer. I hear the clink-hiss as the bottle loses its cap.

"Go ahead and help yourself to a beer, Jack," Daniel remarks drolly.

"That's why I put ‘em there, Danny," Jack replies, as he takes a drink. "Damn, that's good," he says reverently as he walks back into the living room and plops down next to me, taking another long swallow.

"You haven't had a beer yet?" Daniel sounds quite surprised by this.

"Came straight from the mountain," Jack answers. "No drinking and driving for this flyboy," Jack says proudly. He turns his attention back to me, "So Kira, how goes it? Daniel tell you anything interesting yet?" This time I catch the daggers that Daniel shoots his way. I count to three.

"You mean besides asking me to marry him?" It's a good thing Jack had just swallowed his beer; otherwise I'm certain I would have been showered with the stuff.

"WHAT?!" he sputters looking back and forth between Daniel and me.

"I did WHAT?!"

"You asked me to marry you," I reply, wrinkling my forehead in consternation. Didn't he?

"Daniel," Jack growls, looking every inch like a dad who wants to eviscerate a potential suitor.

"Jack, Kira just misunderstood me," Daniel explains, talking rapidly. "Kira," he says, turning towards me, "I don't want to marry you." My eyes fill with tears.

"You don't want to marry me," I repeat softly.

"Great, Daniel," Jack says handing me a handkerchief. "You made Kira cry." He puts his arm around me. "Whatever Daniel said Kira, he didn't mean it," Jacks says trying to comfort me.

"It's the wine," I insist, dabbing my eyes with Jack's handkerchief. "I just misunderstood." I'm in babble mode before I even know what's happening. "Daniel wanted to tell me something, and then he started with one thing, but then changed to something else, until I finally told him to cut to the chase and just tell me the bottom line, and that's when he told me I should just say yes, and then..."

"Kira, will you come work for me?" Daniel blurts out, interrupting me before I can ramble further. It takes several moments before his words sink in.

"What?" I ask turning to look at him. I'm certain I must look like one of those inane kewpie dolls, all wide eyed and hopeful.

"I want you to work for me." He says this seriously, but his lips are curled ever so slightly in a smile and his eyes are bright blue with emotion. "That is if you want too."

"You want me to work for you," I repeat, trying to keep my voice from cracking. Oh My God – this is like a dream come true!

"Yes," Daniel says with a nod. "I didn't want you to accept the job at the CIA , because I want you to work for me."

"Doing what?" I ask.

"What you've been trained to do, Kira," Daniel explains. "A lot of linguistic research, some cataloging of new languages and perhaps a few translation projects."

"What languages?"

"Whatever languages we find," Daniel replies, shrugging.

"Daniel, that doesn't make sense!" I say stubbornly. I might be thrilled nearly beyond words at what Daniel is offering me, but I still need at least a few details.

"I know you have questions, Kira," Daniel explains, but first I need you to do something for me."

"What's that?"

"We need you to sign a few papers."

I wrinkle my nose. "Why do I need to sign those?" I ask, eyeing the thick manila folder on the side of the table. I can understand one or two pages – maybe even a dozen or so, but that file over there is thick! Just when I thought I had everything figured out, Daniel has to go and throw me a curve ball again.

I really hate baseball.

"And unfortunately, we kind of need you to sign them before I can tell you any specific details about what it is you'll be doing." Daniel shrugs apologetically, as he (finally) hands over the thick packet of papers in the heavyweight manila folder. I open the folder up and am greeted with huge red letters stamped across the top of the page:


Silently I skim the first few pages, before looking back up at Jack and Daniel, completely and utterly confused. Confidential? And once signed, and my background checked out, I'll be cleared for SECRET and potentially TOP SECRET information? What kind of translating gig is this?!

"Don't worry, you've been cleared for most of it already," Daniel says as I flip through the many, many pages of questions.

"No she hasn't, Daniel," Jack replies in a sing-song voice.

"But I thought you had said..." Daniel begins; Jack just shrugs.

"Oh, I'm certain Kira will pass with flying colors, but all I did was the most cursory of background checks on her – the kind of thing anyone with half a brain could do via the Internet." He gives Daniel one of those enigmatic Colonel looks I can never figure out. "I know you think the military, and the CIA for that matter is shifty, but we really do try and do things by the book whenever possible." He gives me an apologetic look. "We'll probably grant you probationary clearance in less than a month, but you won't be allowed to see any classified files until you've been cleared through all channels." Jack gives me a very pointed look. "Although you just happen to know the 2IC of the base, so I'm going to make sure you see the Big Stuff on the first day."

My head is starting to hurt. 2IC? Big Stuff? "I'm confused, guys," I say after Jack had finished confusing the heck out of me with all the security check stuff. "Jack's Air Force, right?" Jack nods. "Daniel, are you Air Force, too?"

"No," Daniel says quickly. "I'm civilian. I just work for the Air Force. You would be doing the same thing."

"What does the Air Force have to do with archaeology and linguistics?"

"May I, Daniel?" Jack asks solicitously. He actually doesn't sound like he's mocking Daniel at all. "I said it was your gig, and it is, but if you'd like some help on this..."

"Go right ahead," Daniel says sitting down and pouring himself a glass of wine. "I'm curious too, Jack," Daniel says with a little smile. "Just what does the Air Force have to do with archaeology and linguistics?" Jack gives him another one of those "looks" and begins.

"A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away..."

"Jack!" Daniel admonishes.

"That was entirely Teal'c's doing," Jack mumbles, looking abashed.

"Teal'c?" I ask.

"You know him as Murray ," Jack explains.

" Murray is Teal'c?" What kind of name is Teal'c?

"Believe me Kira, after you visit the mountain, the fact that one guy has two names will be the least of your concerns."

"Way to make her feel better, Jack!"

"I'm just saying..."

"What happened in a galaxy far, far away, Jack?" I ask curiously. I actually put my water down and take another sip of wine. Stories are best told with either milk and cookies or barring the good stuff, alcoholic beverages.

"Well you see there was this guy," Jack begins, "who didn't quite see eye to eye with the rest of the world."

"Although he was right," Daniel adds, sounding ever so smug.

"But this didn't help him from standing up before a group of his peers and saying a whole lot of stuff they didn't want to hear," Jack continues. In the back of my mind, I feel a huge oak door slowly opening – this sounded eerily familiar.

"So the guy says a bunch of stuff that no one believes and the next thing you know he's disappeared off the face of the earth and..."


Jack's voice fades as a rush of memories come roaring back to me. I still see Jack's mouth moving, but no sound reaches my ears. With a calmness I certainly don't feel, I set my wine glass down and stand up.

"Excuse me a moment," I say politely. Without hearing Jack or Daniel reply, I walk over to where I left my purse by the front door. I pick it up and walk to the dining room table before unceremoniously dumping the contents out. Wordlessly I pull out a very well worn piece of paper. I stare at it for several long moments. It really does not look like a poorly drawn stick figure any longer.

"Kira, are you all right?" Daniel calls out. I'm thankful my ears seem to be working again. I'm still facing away from them, and it is all I can do to shake my head slowly back and forth. No, Daniel. I am not. I hear both of them stand up and walk over to me.

"Kira?" Jack asks, laying a hand against my back. Absently I realize I've started to shake. Wordlessly, I hand Daniel my drawing.

"It isn't a stick figure," I explain inanely. "All this time, I thought it was a really bad drawing, but for the life of me I just couldn't throw it away."

"Daniel?" Jack asks. He hasn't seen the picture yet.

"Kira, you need to sit down," Daniel says softly, as he passes Jack the picture. He gently takes my arm and leads me over to the couch.

"This might be a problem," Jack says absently, holding the drawing up to the light.

"Kira, where did you get this?"

"Jack, would you let the girl catch her breath?!" Daniel sounds angry. Although come to think of it, I'm really not doing very well, am I? Daniel hands me the glass of water. I take a sip as Jack picks up his own beer.

I look solemnly at the two men before mustering up enough courage to finally ask the question that has been haunting me (albeit only in my dreams) for the past year,

"Daniel, are you really an alien archaeologist with Jack and Sam as your body guards?" This time Jack can't help the beer that comes spraying out of his mouth. He begins to laugh. Loudly.

"It definitely feels like it sometimes, Kira!" Jack finally replies after several seconds of chuckling to himself. He wipes his eyes with the back of his hand before turning to face me. "Now where did you possibly get that idea?" Okay, I'm confused again. For a second there, I thought I was right; that everything I discovered during my drunken Internet search was right and Daniel really did discover that aliens invented the pyramids. But Jack's reaction... Oh God, am I making a complete fool out of myself?!

"It's a long story," I mumble, feeling very, very embarrassed. Can I screw this up any more than I already have? Absently, I urge myself to take the thought back; of course it can get worse!

"We have the day off tomorrow," Jack says amiably. "Share." In halting words, I fill Jack and Daniel in on my bad date (without the gruesome details). I explain how in a drunken haze I had started doing research on Daniel.

"Why Daniel?" Jack asks with interest. I try not to roll my eyes. Why does everyone always assume I have the hots for Daniel! I mean, he's my friend for crying out loud!

"I was drunk," I mumble. "Who can say why drunk girls do the things they do?" I really would have pulled that off better if I could have kept from blushing. Jack just grins and gives Daniel a nudge.

"She was drunk."

"Jack, you aren't helping matters here." I can tell that Daniel is not particularly thrilled with how all of this is going. He looks frustrated with Jack's presence.

I proceed to explain how I scoured first the public search engines and then proprietary databases in search of information on Daniel. "I found a transcript of a talk you made before a group of archaeological scholars back in '95." It is not my imagination; Daniel winces.

"It's on the INTERNET, Daniel?" Jack asks incredulously.

"Dozens of people heard me make that speech, Jack," Daniel explains in exasperation. "If someone wanted to transcribe the damn thing, it wasn't like I was actually around to tell them to stop."

"So it's true," I say quietly. "Aliens did build the pyramids." Jack and Daniel do one of those ‘whole-conversations-without-speaking' things.

"Kira, will you sign each and every one of these papers?" Jack asks seriously, holding up the thick packet.

"In order to work with Daniel?" I ask. Jack nods and smiles.


"She did say she'd sign the papers."

"But what about..." Daniel lowers his voice. "Security?"

"Your place was swept the morning we returned," Jack replies matter-of-factly. Daniel does not look happy with this information.

"Gee, way to trust your co-worker, Jack."

"I'm not the one who tends to write down complete mission details in public diaries," Jack begins.

"The diaries aren't meant to be public, Jack."

"Um, can we focus on alien pyramids, here?" I say, interrupting them before they get too carried away. Usually I love ‘the Jack and Daniel show', but not tonight.

"Yes Kira, aliens did build the pyramids," Daniel explains.

"And Danny-boy here figured it out," Jack says proudly.

"But there's more to it than just that," Daniel interjects. "And you seriously need to see it to believe it."

"Not all the aliens are nice, are they?" I ask suddenly feeling very small.

"No," Jack answers succinctly. "Some are most assuredly not nice."

"Were you really kidnapped by aliens and cryogenically frozen?" I ask Daniel. He nods.

"And yes, they did indeed give me my first haircut in over three years."

"Ah, you were looking way too pretty before that, Daniel."

"Thanks Jack."

"Your wife," I say suddenly making a connection. "Your wife is an alien!"

"My wife was human, Kira," Daniel says carefully. "There are hundreds, if not thousands of human colonies throughout the galaxy." Wait a minute. Galaxy?

"Do the laws of physics not exist in space?" I ask seriously. "Because, unless you guys know how to travel faster than light, than I don't see how..." my voice trails off as they both nod.

"We can travel faster than light, Kira," Jack explains. "It's actually pretty cool, and I bet you'll love it once you see it." It? Without warning, the enormity of everything they have told me begins to sink in. Years. Jack and Daniel have been visiting aliens for years. And then apparently heading back to Earth for a cup of coffee. This is real.

The room seems to tilt all funny as I feel my heart race and it becomes more and more difficult to catch my breath. I begin to shiver for no good reason.

"Kira?" Daniel asks worriedly. Damn. And here I thought I was taking all of this so well.

"You know in hindsight, we really shouldn't have been quite so glib," Jack says, as he gently lays a hand on my back. "Just concentrate on taking slow, deep breaths, Kira."

"Kira," Daniel repeats, taking a hold of my hands (I swear, they've become blocks of ice) and kneeling down next to me. If I weren't in the midst of some serious freaking out here, I'd make a joke about Daniel proposing to me. Again! I begin to giggle to myself hysterically. Twice in one night, Daniel has asked me to marry him! I laugh until I'm suddenly gasping for breath.

"Jack?" Daniel asks worriedly, as he watches me turn a lovely hue of blue. Okay, so maybe I'm imagining that, but I really am having some problems catching my breath.

"Panic attack," Jack replies succinctly. "Kira, you aren't going nuts here – everything Daniel and I have so inarticulately said is true." It takes a moment for his words to sink in. True. Everything they have told me is true. So if all of this is true, why am I panicking? "Don't sweat it, munchkin," he says fondly, rubbing my back in calming circles. "If I have a dollar for everyone who ‘freaked out' a little when told that aliens are real, I'd be a rich man!" I laugh weakly, as I feel my heart rate decrease and my breathing become more controlled. It takes a few minutes, but I finally get myself pulled back together. Daniel gives me some more water, while Jack plods over to the kitchen to dish us up some ice cream.

"You ready to do this, Kira?" Daniel asks, holding out a beautiful dark blue Waterman pen. I accept the pen gratefully and open the folder to the first page.

"Daniel?" I ask sometime later. My hand is now cramped nearly beyond recognition, but I manage to initial the final page and sign my name with a sweeping flourish. Tired, but happy, I close the folder. I'm going to work with Daniel up at Cheyenne mountain!

"Yes?" Daniel answers in a hushed voice. Beside him, Jack is quietly snoring, having long since given up on watching Daniel's National Geographic special. It was a calming distraction in the background and I'm thankful that even those who apparently talk to aliens on a weekly basis, still seem to like T.V. I look over at Daniel and smile.

"Do I get my own office?"

Author's Notes: So...?! Was it everything you had hoped for? Was it worth the wait? Does it makes sense? Please let me know! This story was all about Kira, but I tried to add what I could with Daniel as well. He's going to go all glowy soon (not saying when) and I'm trying to establish that things are at least a little strained between he and Jack - Daniel isn't really acting like the Strong Sexy Daniel of Season 4 and Jack is just...Jack. Er..at least I'm trying to convey that. Please let me know what you thought. I think this has been one of the most anticipated Baristas to date (my fault for giving you all those damn cliffhangers). I'm fairly certain I'm going to be adding another paragraph or two to the ending (just to flesh it out a bit), but the gist of all is there!

Er...and speaking of waits...I have to unhappily tell you that there will be no new Baristas until after I hand in my final graduate project. Well, unless there is an Autumnal miracle and I manage to do all my course work, complete my portfolio, hold down a full time job and install new windows in the next month. I'm guessing this won't happen and wanted to prepare you for the inevitable wait. Still, you never know. A wicked plot bunny might hold me ransom and INSIST I write something. Just don't count on it, okay? I'm guestimating a mid-October posting {ducks} I did warn you that this might happen! Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Completed Sept 10, 2005

Home |Series Home | Previous Chapter | Next Chapter

Email me

Web Counter by TrafficFile.com