woke up with a headache and managed to stumble into the infirmary; I
had let my migraine medication run out again. I blinked at the
seemingly harsh light, and waived noncommittally at Daniel as he
noticed me walking to the quiet, darker end of the ward.
What was Daniel doing here in the infirmary? I peaked around the curtain and noticed he was talking to Carolyn. They were talking in hushed voices, Daniel gesturing half his words. What was he so excited about at - I glanced down - 0749 in the morning? I let the curtain fall as a wave of nausea hit me. My dad would always cluck his tongue and say, "A brilliant thought is boiling your brain," as he would hand me a washcloth and some aspirin. I would walk carefully back to my room, letting the darkness surround me as I slept.
"Hey," Daniel's soft voice said. I opened my eyes and looked at him. He handed me a washcloth and, without the words of my father, helped me turn so I could lie on my back. "Dr. Lam is filling your order; she will be by shortly it looks like SG3 just came back from their mission. Need anything?"
I adjusted the washcloth and brought my legs up, resting my feet flat on the bed. "No, maybe a blanket but really it's ok."
"Blanket coming up," Daniel said. He left and produced a blanket, laid it beside me, fluffed my pillow as best as he could and smiled down at me. I drifted into a fitful, head-aching sleep at that smile.
* * *
By the time I was better, half the day was gone. Cam had come by to see where I was, Teal'c had brought some jell-o and Daniel had come back with a book. I glanced around my office and decided really I could not do much but catch up on signatures and recommendations. I needed fresh, unfiltered air, first and grabbed my nonmilitary jacket and went up topside. I rummaged from my keys and walked over to my car, ready to pick up a few more presents for my Valentine.
I waved to the Guards and sped into Colorado Springs. I looked at my quick list of things that I wanted to get while I was out: more chocolate (can't have enough), lighter fluid (for next weeks cold mission), books (one on roses, and a couple for Daniel) and a poster for Cam. I knew I could find a poster that would reflect his love of the singing teddy bear.
I pulled into the mall parking lot, and since it was still before the evening rush, I got a great parking spot. I walked in and decided the bookstore would be the best place to start looking. I found the gardening section fairly quickly and started to look at "Roses for Dummies." I don't feel bad for picking this book up; you know even Daniel has a few from the series. He says that they are great resources for quick and general knowledge. Really how much do I need to know about roses anyway? With my plant thumb it�s lucky to live for the next few days.
Dodging a few teenagers, I made my way to the Literature and Poetry section. Admittedly this is one of my personal favorite places in bookstores. The great writers like Dickens, Fitzgerald and Poe lined my own walls at home. My favorite author, and the one I put as "one book I don't own," was a new anthology on Hemingway. I had several of his poems, short stories and even a few of his novels that Dad had given me through the years, some were original prints and limited editions, so I figured a new book would go quite nicely in the collection.
I pulled myself away from the Hemingway section and went to the T.S. Elliott row, searching my brain if Daniel owned one or two of them.
After three hours, I was back on base, sitting in my office, signing and approving files. A knock on my door caused me to pause and look up.
"Cam, come in."
"Have you been by the mailboxes?" he asked, sitting on the stool across from me. I shook my head; I still needed to figure out which ones to give, not to mention wrap Cam's poster. "Carolyn got a hanging plant. Really pretty. And the card said - and I quote - "My heart is like the flowers, pure red. Thanks for the last infusion of blood - Secret Admirer.'"
I smiled. "Really? That's sweet. But that does not narrow the list of who it cloud be."
"I just thought it was interesting," he shrugged. "So I guess you really haven't been by to see your box."
"No,� I said slowly. "Do I need to be worried?"
"Um ... just as long as you remember which one you are, I think you can find it." Cam flashed another secretive smile and got up to leave. "Well, I'll see ya in the morning - team breakfast!"
I bit my lip and smiled. Sometimes Cam could be really too chipper about things. I picked up my pen and tapped it on the side of the desk, thoughtlessly flipping another file. Gah, now I had to look. I gathered the signed files and quickly signed the last three, scooping them all up and walked to the departmental boxes. Nothing was in the one on this floor, and I figured whoever it was was going to put his stuff in the Team mailbox. It got very confusing sometimes where to send mail since as SG teams we had a general box, but since we also held our own offices in various departments, we had departmental mailboxes.
As I rode the elevator to my room, I decided I would put Daniel's things in his departmental box, change it up a bit. Finally tucking the last of the mauve (Daniel's least favorite color) tissue paper in the cyan (his favorite color) bag, I opened the door and dashed to the elevator. I felt like a little kid not wanting to be caught, and really I was. As I got to Daniel's department, I suddenly remembered I was not really sure where the boxes were located. Sure I had followed Daniel as he checked his mail, but I think we were talking and really not paying attention. I sighed and decided to go over to his office, hopefully from that starting point I could find it.
His light was on, and he was bent over some stone. He ran his fingers in his short hair and even I heard him sigh. I smiled as I walked down the hall, looking down the corridors to see if one looked familiar. This floors layout was different from mine, and so I made a few wrong turns to get to the mailroom. I gripped the bag and quickly looked around, making sure no one, especially one named Daniel, was coming. Confident I was alone I dropped the bag beside the box that had 'Dr. D. Jackson' on it and turned around.
"Colonel Carter," Dr. Bill Lee said.
He startled me and all I could do was give a small wave and slip past him. I ran down the hall like it was a national emergency that I needed to get to the elevators. I did not take a deep breath until the doors shut. I needed to call Cassie and tell her that this was beyond good for my health; I was acting like a teenager.
* * *
Cam was not joking. My box, I supposed it was mine since it stood between 'Lt. Col. Mitchell' and 'Dr. Jackson' since about last June, was covered with plastic roses, pink candy hearts and a heart doily. I looked at it for a second and time seemed to stand still. Where they glued on? If so I would be having a very interesting box cover for a long time. I gingerly touched one of the roses, and it pulled off. Double side stick tape. Thank Gawd. I replaced it with a smile. Let the others see how lucky I am. Cassie would sure be laughing and gushing when I told her about this. Opening the box was a single rose and a bright pink envelope. I looked at the handwriting, but that did not give me any clues. I opened it as after I closed the door and was walking to the elevators. I leaned against the wall, a foot propped up against it, and read:
We heard a small sparrow say,
You suffered a headache today.
You should know that we were so blue,
Because we did not know what to do.
I smiled and opened the card:
Get well soon, sorry to hear about the headache. Remember all that paperwork is due sometime. Love Secret Admirer
I turned it back over and looked at the two blue sparrows sitting on a limb. It was a very cute card and I felt a small blush rise in my cheeks. Cassie's words rang through my head as I took another look at my covered locker. I dare you to enjoy being admired. I could get used to this.
* * *
I was surprised to see I was the first one to the commissary the next morning. I had already gotten a plate and drunken two cups of coffee as I saw the boys hit the doors. They were in their work out cloths and I saw no fewer then five other women wide eyed in wonder as they walked through the line. Yup, they know how to make an impression. Teal'c had a muscle shirt on, showing of his oh-so-not-human sized biceps. Daniel had a short-sleeved shirt on, but seemed to be molded to his body; even his nice six pak was shown off. Cam was also in a muscle shirt, his arms flexing every time he lifted the tray. I do not feel an ounce of guilt as I watch them; I am after all a woman, and have noticed for a long time that each of them is very male.
"So what's with the getups?" I asked as Cam set down his tray.
"Basketball. Two on two," Cam answered as he forked some pancakes in his mouth. "You may want to change."
"Maybe some of us have work," I said. I smiled back at Cam as he grinned.
"No, no, Carter this is basketball day."
"Indeed," Teal'c said, grinning. "ColonelMitchell has said Saturdays should be spent on our 'downtime' skills."
"Ah. Well I have to spend some time on my promoting skills," I said wearily, pushing my eggs around.
"Come on Sam, you need some time away from all that paper too," Daniel said, nudging my arm lightly.
I sighed. Hot, hunky, teammates of men were telling me to ditch work and play all day. Why was it so hard to just relax? After all, hadn't I just told Daniel that I needed some downtime? "Ok, ok ... two on two," I said, nodding.
"Sweet. And after Teal'c and I beat you two," Cam said, indicating Daniel and I with his fork, "we'll be nice and you can treat us to dinner."
"You think you could beat us," Daniel asked, humor tinting his voice.
"Ya, why not?" Cam replied.
"You know who you are playing against right? Two brilliant scientists who can calculate how much distance and force is needed to score a point. You really think you can beat us?" I asked, matching Cam's cockiness.
"We'll see won't we?" Cam smiled.
"I think this is most unwise," Teal'c said. Ah the gentle voice of reason.
* * *
Daniel and I grinned as Cam pulled out his wallet. Oh winning was such bliss, and by the look on Cam's face he knew he was going to fail far sooner than he wanted to admit. Teal'c sat quietly as Cam once more voiced how "unfair advantage" Daniel and I had. I shrugged and Daniel reminded him that I had warned him.
Returning to the base we all made our way to the mailboxes. Before I had gone to breakfast, I had placed a box of chocolates in Daniel's box and the poster by Cam's. I hadn't seen anything in mine, and figured whoever he was, was not an early riser.
"Oh look, cupid has arrived," Cam said in a happy voice. His secret admirer hadn't given him any more singing bears, but he did get a singing card while were on our mission. It was easy to shut off: don't open the card. Teal'c looked very disappointed. "What's this? Maybe a picture of my lady love?"
I looked at him and shook my head slightly. "Cam, I'm still a bit queasy, mind keeping it down?"
"Oh come on, how bad could it be?" Cam asked as he unrolled the poster. "Oh."
The look on his face was priceless, and Teal'c's bellowing laughter summed it all up. Daniel stared at it and I smirked. In his hands was a poster that had the oh-so-popular 'Happy Bunny' on it, with the words 'Not that evil, not that good either' in red stood against the black background and the red bunny had this wicked looking grin on it.
"It seems like who ever is your admirer heard about your cruelty to animals," Daniel said. Cam nodded and quickly rolled the poster up. He left, grabbing the other gifts - a box of Cracker Jacks and a tin of boot shine.
"Well I can't wait to see who has him," Daniel said. I looked over to Teal'c who was still laughing.
"Well, at least it is entertaining Teal'c," I said helpfully. I smiled as Daniel oohed and ahhed over the box of chocolate and small book of Mesopotamian art.
Days 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 down. Two more till V-Day.
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