Jmas Fan Fiction

 

T

Checkmate

by Jmas

 

A danger to himself or others? Daniel?

Jack wondered if that head doctor realized how ludicrous that sounded. The greatest danger Daniel posed to himself was forgetting to eat or sleep when he got too wrapped up in studying his latest rock. The other members of SG-1 had come to understand and accept that facet of Daniel's personality and had developed their own habit of checking up on the young scientist; taking him food or sometimes, literally, dragging him off to bed.

Not exactly normal behavior, Jack conceded, but that doesn't make him nuts, it's just normal for Daniel. And nothing anyone could ever say would convince Jack that Daniel could be a danger to his teammates.

Jack found himself watching Daniel's face as the younger man concentrated on their chess game, just as intent on it as he would be on one of his stone tablets. Daniel didn't do things halfway, he poured all of his energy into the task at hand.

The doctors had decided that Daniel needed to be isolated until he either got better or manifested more symptoms. Jack could see the apprehension in his friend's eyes when Dr. MacKenzie, the military psychiatrist that General Hammond had called in, had impassively delivered his diagnosis. Oh, yeah, Jack thought, We're just locking you up because you hear things the rest of us don't. Even with that, nothing would convince Jack that this was anything more than stress. God knew they all had gone through more than their share of that lately.

Not that Jack had ever really told Daniel, but he had a lot of respect and admiration for Daniel's seemingly endless store of knowledge. More than once, Jack had felt like a hopelessly dim schoolboy under Daniel's rapid-fire delivery of obscure facts. Now as Jack watched Daniel's brow furrowing, it seemed that he was working harder at this chess game than he usually had to.

Probably the medication, Jack thought. Daniel hated the thought of taking as much as an aspirin if wasn't absolutely neccessary. It hadn't taken Jack long to make Daniel realize that it was a choice between the pills or Mackenzie carting him off to the rubber room right then and there. Between the pain medication for the migraines and that anti-delusional junk that Daniel had protested taking the most, it was a wonder Daniel was even functioning.

Jack made a move that placed Daniel's queen in check, which was closer than he'd ever gotten to winning at chess with Daniel and any other time he'd be enjoying it. Right now, I'd be happier if he creamed me in the usual 20 minutes, Jack thought glumly.

Daniel looked up at Jack in surprise and Jack could see the worry in his friend's eyes. Daniel was usually so confident in his proven abilities, it was as if that confidence had been shaken to the core by the things that had been happening since they'd entered that Linvris chamber. Wormholes in the closet? Jack had to admit it did sound a little nuts, but he knew his friend and if Daniel said it happened, then there had to be some kind of logical explanation for it.

Jack watched as Daniel moved to checkmate his queen, complaining that he could have done it two moves ago. Jack was sure of that, but was oddly comforted by the words. As Daniel looked up at him again, those expressive blue eyes seemed to speak volumes. He appreciated Jack being there...once again standing by him in troubled times.

So much pain and responsibility rested on those slim young shoulders that sometimes Jack wondered how Daniel had held it together through it all. But Jack also knew that Daniel possessed a core of strength that rivaled, if not surpassed, his own and God knew Jack had come closer than he would ever admit to that dark edge of madness. Daniel had helped him through many troubled times with his compassion, quick wit and enormously caring heart. Sometimes Jack envied Daniel that ability to take things into his own heart and soul without fear. Now he just hoped that Daniel hadn't taken on one thing too many.

Whatever happened, Jack silently promised his friend, they would get through it together. At that moment Daniel caught his eyes again and the promise passed silently between them. Jack saw the understanding and gratitude shine brightly in Daniel's eyes for a moment, before the moment passed. Jack deflected any comments with a gruff suggestion that they play gin; Daniel stunk at gin. Daniel reminded his friend of that, but got up to get the cards.

As Jack watched his friend's tense back, he renewed the vow. Whatever happened, Daniel would not go through it alone.

The End

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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