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by AFG
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by afg

Summary: There are places he can never go.
Category: Angst
Episode Related: 801 New Order
Season: Season 8
Pairing: Sam/Pete
Rating: FAM
Warnings: adult themes, sexual situations
Disclaimer: Stargate SG-1 and its characters are the property of Showtime/Viacom, MGM/UA, Double Secret Productions, and Gekko Productions. This story was created for entertainment purposes only. No copyright infringement is intended. The original characters, situations, and story are the property of the author(s).
Archived on: 04/04/06

He's not sure what wakes him up until he turns to the woman in bed beside him. She is dreaming. Sam dreams a lot, she often talks in her sleep. They've not spent that many nights together but Pete remembers the majority of them have included slurred scientific gobbledygook during some part of the night. He watches her; he still can't believe his luck. Men like him don't get brilliant, beautiful women like Sam. He's been a joker all his life; she makes him want to be a poet.
A part of him knows that this is a fragile thing. Not just that their careers keep them apart for much of the time, which is hard enough; it's more than that. He's tried not to ask about what she does or where she goes but more and more he's arrived at her house to find her dopey with painkillers or struggling with crutches. Her body carries more scars than anyone he knows. He wants to hear the story of every one of them and sometimes he thinks she wants to tell him. He knows he's rushing her too much, but he can't help himself. He has a feeling that if he doesn't keep the momentum going he'll lose her and she'll figure out that a short cop with receding hair is not a good bet.
Lately things have changed. They've lost something...no, she's lost something. He's still doing what he always does but he can't seem to engage with her in the same way. She still laughs with him and makes love with him but even that has changed. There is something a little desperate about the sex. It's still great but it seems less about connecting and more about forgetting these days.
Last night she'd scared him. She'd come back from wherever she'd been, looking pale and tired. He'd been so damn happy to see her. They'd eaten take out and spent the evening watching an old movie, 'Now Voyager' with Bette Davis. He'd passed her the tissues, well accustomed to her predilection for black and white weepies. Then they'd gone to bed. It wasn't until he'd had her on his lap, watching her as she rose and fell, her pale skin slicked with a sheen of sweat, that he'd realised that she hadn't really looked at him all evening. She'd looked at her food, at the washing up, at the movie, but not him. Even while she'd loved him, she'd had her eyes screwed shut, a look of intense concentration on her face.
She'd shaken her head slightly and increased her pace. Her fingers had dug into his shoulders so hard that it had hurt.
"Sam, honey...look at me."
Her thighs had trembled around his waist and she'd shaken her head again, biting her lip.
"Please...Sam, stop a minute."
She'd tried to press her self to him but he'd gripped her shoulders to prevent her. So she'd tried to increase the pace again but he'd held her waist to try and slow her down a little
"Open your eyes, look at me." He'd cupped her cheek in his palm feeling the clench of her jaw muscles. "Baby, please, tell me what's going on?" She'd pushed his hand off her face and gripped the headboard behind him trying to move on him again, but he'd shifted his hands to her hips and held her against him. "Sam, for Christ's sake, look at me!"
What had happened next was a bit of a blur. He'd heard her cry out and then she was pushing hard against his shoulders. She'd shot off the bed, her hip catching the side of the dressing table as she'd backed in to the corner of the room. She still hadn't opened her eyes.
He'd been left on the bed, his mouth hanging open in shock. It wasn't until she'd slid down the wall and pulled her knees to her chest that he'd recovered enough to go over to her. She must have heard his approach because she'd put her hand up palm forward in a 'stop' gesture.
"Sam...it's okay, it's me, Pete." He'd approached her cautiously, hunkering down as he got nearer. "Look Sam, look. It's me, it's Pete." He'd reached out and touched her knee; she'd jerked at the contact, her hand still trying to warn him off.
He'd thought briefly of calling Janet Fraiser until he remembered that she was dead. He didn't want to call the SGC because he knew they'd whisk her off to Cheyenne Mountain and he'd be left on the outside yet again. Sam had begun to rock gently her face pressed to her knees as if she was trying to make herself as small as possible.
"Sam, honey if you would just open your eyes you'll see you're safe... I'm not going to hurt you, Please Sam, come on, just try for me, okay?"
"What if you're not?"
Pete almost hadn't heard her; her voice was so small.
"What if I'm not what, Sam?"
He'd had no clue what she was talking about. Calling the SGC was looking more like an option by the minute. "Sam, I'm real, I promise. Come on, would any other guy order you pizza with pineapple, garlic and anchovies and help you eat it? Come on baby, just look and you'll see...I'll let you smell my fish breath."
Finally she'd lifted her head and her eyes had opened. He'd knelt before her his hands held by his sides and tried to look as harmless as a naked man with a half-mast erection possibly could.
His heart had ached at the desperate hope he'd heard in her voice. "Yeah, Sam, it's me...it's me."
He touched her then and brought her into his arms. She'd not resisted but she'd been stiff and tense. He'd tilted her face up and gently kissed her.
"See, doesn't that feel real?" He'd looked at her, smoothing her hair off her forehead he hadn't understood the look in her eyes at all "What, baby...what is it?"
"You said that last time."
He'd not recalled ever saying that to her. "Okay, come on. Let's get you back into bed you're getting cold." He'd helped her to her feet and coaxed her back into bed where he'd pulled her to him. It had felt like cuddling an ironing board until exhaustion had claimed her and she'd slept and, eventually, so had he.
Now, as he watched her twitch in her dreams, he wondered if he would ever know what had happened to her while she'd been away. He thought probably not. Could he live with that, could he live this half life with her never knowing what she was doing whether she was safe or hurt or worse?
Her voice broke into his thoughts. "Hey, you." He touched her cheek with his fingertips. "Feeling better?"
He watched as a pink flush spread over her face and neck.
"I'm sorry I freaked out on you."
Pete nodded "I don't suppose you want to tell me what all that was about?"
Her eyes closed and she sighed. "I was alone for a while and I had a bit of a bad time, but I'm okay." She looked at him, her eyes moist with burgeoning tears that she blinked away. "I was wiped last night and things just got on top of me a little, but I'm okay, I promise."
"Okay." He knew better than to push her, he'd got more of an explanation than he'd expected as it was. "Tell you what, how about I cook you breakfast?" He felt her whole body tense at his words he could see her making a conscious effort to relax. "What did I say?"
"Nothing...I'm sorry." She pulled him to her and rested her cheek over his heart. "Can we just lie here for a while, then I'll cook you breakfast."
"Shall I get the bunting out?"
"Funny, funny man."
"Okay I'll risk it, you can cook breakfast."
"You're a good man."
He felt her kiss his chest, her arm tightening around him. He wanted to believe that he was going to be good enough, but he wasn't quite sure. He tightened his hold on the woman in his arms and just hoped.
The end
End notes: Rowan is entirely to blame for this story, as she mentioned in a Topic of the Week discussion, that she thought Sam and Pete had not seemed as close when he'd proposed as they were at the beginning of their relationship. I thought that there could have been several reasons for that...this is just one.

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