Vicky (vickyocean) wrote in gateverse_remix,
Vicky
vickyocean
gateverse_remix

The Junkie (Naquadah is a Girl's Best Friend remix)

Title: The Junkie (Naquadah is a Girl's Best Friend remix)
Author: vickyocean
Fandom: SG1
Rating: PG
Original Story: Cabbages and Kings- Part the Forth Ficlet by grav_ity
Characters: Jack O'Neill, Teal'c, Janet Frasier, General Hammond, Sam Carter.
Summary: Gen. After the events of The Curse, Jack realizes why Carter doesn't like to get away.

----

 
Jack wasn’t as ignorant as Carter seemed to think him to be. It may have taken him quite a while to figure out exactly what was going on with her, but he had been noticing the signs that something was definitely awry.

Carter was far from being an open book, even to those who knew her best. She was almost as good at faking everything was just dandy as he was. As an extremely private person himself, he was loath to go delving into her personal life. He would only pry if whatever was going on became a problem and therefore became his business.

He understood workaholics far better than he’d like to. In fact, he’d always been something of one himself. But Jack also knew there was a point where you needed a break- needed to get away. Carter never wanted to get away.

Okay, so he understood why she wouldn’t want to go away to Minnesota with him. Not that he hadn’t been just a tad bit hurt that she continually declined. She was after all the first person he had invited to his sanctuary since before his son died. At any rate, he really did understand. It wasn’t really appropriate to ask her at all, but she’d been through so much in the last couple of years. He had hoped that she might be able to find a little bit of the peace he found there. Not to mention it would be nice to spend time with her as couple of friends (or more) without all the rules, ranks, and war weighing down on them.

It didn’t escape Jack’s notice that Carter began to get a little freaked out at the thought of traveling very far from Colorado. She absolutely despised the quarterly trips she had to take to brief the big shots in Washington on the science-y aspects of the Stargate Program. She hadn’t always been like that either. During the early days of the program she used to enjoy her trips to DC, where she got the chance to catch up with her friends that still lived there.

It was only after the incident with Daniel’s ex becoming a Goa’uld and Carter, Daniel, and Doctor Fraiser had following her to Egypt that all the pieces finally came together. He and Teal’c had been in Minnesota when the whole thing went down. They’d made it back to Colorado Springs a day or so after the others had returned from Egypt.

His first day he’d been back on duty, Jack had gone to see her in her lab. Carter had seemed a little twitchy and irritable, but he’d put it down to jet lag and maybe a little too much coffee. Later, during the briefing on the Osiris incident, she’d almost completely zoned out, staring out the window overlooking the Gate Room. General Hammond had to prompt her when it came time for her to give her analysis of the situation. She quickly recovered out of her stupor and as always spoke insightfully, but Jack and Teal’c shared a look and a raised eyebrow at her faux pas.

Carter quickly fled the briefing room after they were dismissed, but she didn’t go far. When Jack ambled out, he found her sitting in the control room next to Walter. Her fingers were poised over the keyboard, but her attention was focused on the Stargate below. She was absolutely transfixed.

“Carter, you okay?” She didn’t respond, so he said a little louder. “Carter?”

She glanced over her shoulder at him, “Sir?”

“You okay?”

“Of course, sir. Why wouldn’t I be?”

Jack managed to refrain from rolling his eyes. “I dunno. You seem a little spaced out.”

“I’m okay, sir. Just a little jet lagged.”

“Why don’t you go home and get some rest?”

“I will, sir. I just need to run this Gate diagnostic.”

“Walter can do it, can’t he?”

Walter slid a slightly fearful glance at Carter, before returning his attention to his monitor and studiously ignoring them both.

Carter looked back at Jack, the glint in her eye bordering on rebellious and desperate. “I need to do this, sir.”

Jack paused, considering his options. There was definitely something up with Carter, but he didn’t want to push her too far, not yet. “Okay, Carter, just get some rest when you’re done.”

“Yes, sir.” With that Carter started typing furiously, leaving Jack with the feeling that he’d just been dismissed.

---

Jack slumped onto the couch in Teal’c’s quarters. “What’s up with Carter?”

“I am uncertain, O’Neill.”

“But you did notice she’s a little off, right?”

“Indeed. Perhaps she is merely weary from her journey.”

“You know she gets like this whenever she has to go on a long trip.”

“I have observed Major Carter becomes irritable when she must travel to your capital.”

“She used to not be that way. And when she gets back she’ll sit in the Control Room and run diagnostics on the Gate all night long, like if she’s away from it for five minutes it might all go haywire.”

“Major Carter has devoted much of herself to the SGC.”

“But this fixation with the Gate is not healthy.”

“Indeed,” Teal’c acknowledged with a nod.

“But I don’t know what to do about it.”

They were both silent for a long while as they contemplated what could be upsetting Carter. Jack was so wrapped up in his own thoughts that he was a bit startled when Teal’c spoke again.

“Major Carter only began to behave in this manner after she was possessed by the Tok’ra Jolinar.”

“You think that damned snake is still affecting her somehow?”

“I do.”

“What, like she’s nervous without a close escape route through the Gate?”

“In Minnesota, I was far from the Stargate and anyone who had carried a symbiote. It was most strange not to sense the presence of naquadah.”

It took a while for Jack to process what Teal’c had just said, but then comprehension struck him like a lightening bolt. “You think Carter’s addicted to naquadah?”

---

Jack and Teal’c soon found themselves in the infirmary explaining their theory to Doctor Fraiser.

“Well, it’s certainly possible. Major Carter is in close proximity to a Stargate on a daily basis. Not only ours, but when she’s offworld. And if SG-1 strays very far from the Gate, Teal’c is normally there. She’s grown so used to continually sensing the presence of naquadah that when it’s suddenly no longer there, she seems to grow agitated. Much like an addict.” Fraiser looked astounded. “Why hasn’t she ever said anything about this before?”

“Well, you know Carter, she doesn’t exactly go around babbling about herself and problems.”

“No, she doesn’t. We need to get her in here and test this.”

“Whoa, hold on a sec,” Jack held up a hand forestalling the doctor’s obvious fascination with Carter’s ‘addiction’. “Carter obviously realizes what a liability this could be for her if word got out. Let’s see if we can fix it ourselves. Quietly.”

“Of course. You’re right, sir. But what can we do?”

“Teal’c and I have an idea.”

---

Jack knocked on the doorjamb before leaning through General Hammond’s open door. “General, do you have a moment?”

“Of course, Colonel. Come in.”

Jack came fully into the office. Teal’c and Doctor Fraiser filed in after him. Hammond eyed them all with interest.

“What can I you?”

“Sir, we need to talk to you off the record. About Carter.”

The General studied them for a moment before nodding. “Alright, Jack, what seems to be the problem?”

“Well, it’s only a tiny one really.”

“And is it?”

“Carter’s a naquadah junkie,” Jack blurted out.

Fraiser glared at him and with Teal’c’s occasional input she explained their theory much more incisively than he’d ever be able to do himself.

Hammond leaned back in his chair considering what had just been presented to him. “What do you suggest be done?”

“We just need a little naquadah.”

---

Several days later, Sam entered her lab and found something odd on her workbench. It was a small box wrapped in what appeared to be white printer paper. She looked around suspiciously wondering if someone was playing a joke on her. Seeing no one hiding, she carefully unwrapped the paper to reveal an ordinary white cardboard jewelry box. As she dropped the paper she noticed there was something printed on it. Typed in the center of the page were the words: Hope this helps you get away.

Overcome by more curiosity than common sense, Sam opened the box. Lying onto of the cotton was small disk of dark, iridescent metal engraved with the earth glyph and strung on silver chain.

A naquadha pendant.

Something that she could wear and feel the same resonance she felt around Teal’c and the Stargate.

She fastened the necklace around her neck and tucked it under her shirt.

It was strange. She felt almost as if she had shed shackles she hadn’t even quit realized she’d been bound by and she could roam at will.

Sam smiled. She didn’t have to guess that her team were likely responsible for this gift.

Maybe she’s take her bike out this weekend and see where the road took her. Get away for a little bit.

The End
 
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