|you can buy her things now but she'll never be bought
Daniel breaks; in the hope that she'll stop talking for an hour and let him finish the translation he's working on, Ori prophecies that have been handed down in something that looks like Ancient but isn't, he buys Vala an iPod and a set of headphones so big that they make her look like Princess Leia.
(He tells her so, and all it earns him is repetitions 398 through 404 of don't make cultural allusions that I don't understand, so he borrows Teal'c's DVDs, and makes him and Cameron and Sam all sit in his apartment and watch the original three Star Wars movies with him and her on their day off. When the movies are done, Cameron drags a sleeping Sam upright and out to his car, and Teal'c makes polite good-byes and follows, and Vala sits cross-legged on the other end of his couch and fingers the headphones, hanging around her neck because she goes nowhere without her new toy these days, and says, "I see what you meant, Daniel."
And then she says, "Thank you," and kisses him on the cheek and follows the other three out to Cam's car, because Cam's her ride back to the Mountain, when he drops Teal'c off, and it's hard enough to get her clearance to leave without her going AWOL on them out in the world, and she knows it, so for once Vala actually behaves. She leaves Daniel shell-shocked and rubbing his face and weirdly turned-on. He doesn't fall asleep until well past 4 a.m., the press of her lips burning on his face.
Given everything you can say about Vala - she's a petty, self-centered, manipulative thief, to start - you can't say that she isn't smart. The double negative makes Daniel's head hurt every time she does something clever on a mission, unofficial fifth on SG-1, but it's the best way he has to explain it, and for some reason he feels like he needs to explain it.
She's a pain in the ass, but somewhere along the way she got to be his pain in the ass.)
He doesn't teach her how to use any of the download clients, and he deletes his credit card information from the iTunes music store, but three days after she rips the square white packaging open, his hard drive is full of *NSYNC albums and he opens his office door to find her sitting at his desk, watching illegally ripped episodes of Battlestar Galactica on the tiny video screen.
"Their faster than light drive is amazing," she says. "We should get one."
He hates to explain that television isn't real, that Helo and Boomer and the Chief aren't really out in the galaxy somewhere she's never been, but he stops Cameron in the hallway before their next briefing, and when Vala swaggers into the 'gate room before the mission, covering up the fact that Daniel knows she's still not quite sure she's really allowed to go with them, Cameron bumps her with his hip and calls her Starbuck.
She smiles, huge and genuinely happy, and something in Daniel's chest clenches tightly, like it hasn't since Sha're died. It hurts, and it feels good, and he has to turn his head and smile at Sam instead, because he knows that otherwise, he'd stare, and he's trying not to let whatever this is, what it is that Vala makes him feel - he's trying not to let it show. He's trying not to let it happen.
The mission goes to hell, like the missions always do (less often now, than before, but still, odds are, if Daniel goes through a 'gate, something bad or embarrassing or flat-out weird is going to happen, and he's used to it), but somehow having Vala, fifth man on the team and he knows she knows she's not really part of the team, gets them out of it a little less worse for the wear than usual.
Dr. Lam insists on poking the bruise on Daniel's ribs for what feels like an eternity, even though he keeps telling her that yes, it hurts, and no, nothing's broken, and really, Vala broke his fall into the side of the DHD while they were running for their lives. Vala comes over and hops up on the table beside him, swinging her legs, and pats him on the knee. "I'm healthy," she announces.
"Physically, maybe," Daniel mutters.
Vala smirks, and runs her hand up his thigh, leans in a little too close for his comfort. "Are you casting aspersions on my mental health, Daniel?" she purrs. "That's not very nice at all."
Dr. Lam taps him on the chest with her stethoscope. "Your pulse is racing, Dr. Jackson," she says. "Are you sure you're feeling fine?"
"Yes," Daniel says, through gritted teeth, prying Vala's hand off his thigh. "Absolutely. 100%. Just the bruise, that's all," and with Vala's hand determinedly crawling back toward his zipper, "would you stop that right now?"
Vala smirks and hops off the table. Dr. Lam covers her mouth with one hand and snickers, staring over Daniel's shoulder. Daniel heaves a great sigh and concentrates on lowering his pulse, slowing his heartbeat, forgetting the warm, spicy scent of Vala pressed close to him. By the time Dr. Lam is finished with his post-mission exam, he's still half-hard in his pants, but his heart's not racing and she lets him go without much of a fight.
"Daniel," Dr. Lam says, after he's tugged his t-shirt back on and laced his boots back up.
He's halfway out the door, thinking about his mission report and the translation of the Ori prophecies that he still hasn't finished, because Vala hasn't given him the chance despite the iPod and the two seasons of Battlestar Galactica, and he has to turn, twisting around and his bruise aches under his skin when he does, to look at her. "Yes?"
Dr. Lam's smiling, sort of wistful and kind of far away, an expression that Daniel can't read at all. She says, "Oh, nothing," and Daniel leaves the infirmary thinking about Vala, for no reason at all, where he'd been thinking about work just a minute before. He shakes his head in the elevator, going back down to the locker room to clean up, trying to clear her out of his head, and - not for the first time in the last six months - he can't.
He takes his time in the locker room, washing blood and dirt off his skin, and changing into his street clothes. Vala's still knocking around in his brain when he takes the elevator back up to his office, and he can't get her out from under his skin.
He especially can't, because she's sitting in his office when he opens the door, at his desk, feet propped up while she flips through one of his journals, upside down and clearly not reading it. Daniel has to do a double take, though, because she's not wearing her customary at-home-in-the-Mountain leather, or her black off-world camo, either - she's in jeans, and a black turtleneck that he thinks used to belong to Sam, and her hair in those pigtails and her headphones hanging around her neck. When she looks over her shoulder at him standing in the doorway, she almost looks ... like someone normal, like someone from Earth, like someone who isn't a colossal, epic, alien pain in his ass.
(He's been alone for a long time, now; he misses Sha're every day, and he still loves her, and he has SG-1, in whatever its format and its personnel. The team has always been better than a family. Even at the worst moments, when he was frightened or lost or so angry and broken-hearted that he genuinely wanted to walk away from them, from SGC, from all of it, SG-1 was better than a family.
But he's been alone for a long time, and he is sometimes so tired of going home to an empty apartment.
On Abydos, late at night, early in the year he spent there, he would sometimes tell Sha're about life on Earth - customs, and cultures. Clothing, music, language. The things he remembers, the things he studied. She would press her face against his neck, and laugh, and tell him that she wanted to go to Earth with him, and see all these things for herself. See his home.
He would wrap his arms around her and kiss and tell her, "You're my home, now."
Daniel could never picture Sha're in street clothes, the jeans and t-shirts that Daniel wore when he was digging, or sitting in his tiny kitchen reading. She belonged to Abydos and nowhere else, and eventually he stopped telling her about Earth, because it wasn't home anymore.
He misses her every day.)
Vala looks perfectly at home in Sam's cast-offs, grinning at him over her shoulder. She tosses the journal down on his desk, scattering papers and stands up. "Like my new look?" she says, spinning in a circle. "Sam said I couldn't leave the mountain in my leather anymore, because people stare too much."
He's staring, he knows it, but he's thinking of Sha're and being alone and how fantastic Vala's ass looks in those jeans, and he can't tear his eyes off her and he feels overwhelmed by sadness and by lust, in equal parts. It's what Vala always makes him feel - when she's not making him grit his teeth in irritation - and he should be used to it, be past it by now, and he isn't.
Daniel knows that it isn't a betrayal to Sha're to want someone else now; she would never have wanted him to be alone for all these years. But he had always thought that he would come back to Earth after she died, and find someone here, someone normal, someone who didn't know that there was a Stargate buried underneath the Mountain. Someone who wasn't alien - someone who didn't know the horrors of the Goa'uld.
Not someone like Vala, who knew it all and probably more.
She is nothing like what he had expected to want, and yet he wants her anyway.
Daniel blinks, and Vala is suddenly in his personal space, pressed up against him with her fingers hooked in his beltloops, and she says, pouting. "You're not paying attention to me." Then she wriggles, pressing against his dick, which is still half-hard and getting harder, and smiles at him again, the slow burn I-know-what-you're-up-to smile that unnerves him so much.
"So are you going to leave the Mountain, then?" Daniel says, pushing her away and sinking into his chair. He puts the journal she dropped back into the right pile, straightens the papers she had her feet on, and boots up his laptop. He doesn't look at her, even when she props a hip on the desk and drums her fingers on his keyboard.
"You owe me dinner," she says.
"I do not," Daniel says. He opens a new mission report template, cuts and pastes his pre-mission notes into their space, and closes his eyes to think, banishing Vala from his line of vision.
Her mouth is so close to his ear that he feels her speak as much as he hears her. "You do, too," she says. Her breath is warm, and he's pretty sure that she'd just licked her lips. "I saved your life today, you owe me dinner. Sam told me that's how it works."
Daniel sighs, and closes the laptop. He opens his eyes and finds himself nose to nose with Vala. "Sam perpetuates a lot of rumors at my expense," Daniel says.
"Sam said," Vala says, and there's something genuinely hurt in her voice, underneath the little girl pout. Daniel watches her move across the room and slump into his extra chair, and realizes that she's hurt that he'd rather stay here and write a mission report than go and have dinner with her. Realizes that he'd rather have dinner with her than write the report.
"Well, if Samantha Carter, PhD, said so," Daniel says, and Vala actually jumps to her feet, grabbing a leather jacket that he thinks used to be Cameron's - used to be as in it was Cameron's until about three hours ago - from the back of the chair and shrugging it on. "Come on."
He shoves the laptop in his bag and takes his time sifting the photocopied articles and journals crowding his desk while Vala bounces at the door. By the time he shrugs on his coat, she's practically vibrating with excitement, and he thinks, a little guiltily, that she's even more trapped here than Teal'c was, early on, and they should really make an effort to take her out, sometimes. He slings the laptop across his chest and says, "Okay. But no stealing anything, okay?"
"Okay," she says, nodding hard and smiling up at him, really smiling, not her I-want-something smiles or her I'm-trying-to-use-my-breasts-to-distract-you smile.
"Promise me," Daniel says.
"Oh, I'll promise you more than that, darling," Vala says, and presses up against him even closer. Daniel steps backwards, almost loses his balance, and has to grab her arm to steady himself. Vala laughs, and tucks her arm through his.
She leaves her arm tucked against while he signs her out of the Mountain, pausing by the checkbox that says Overnight clearance, before he draws an X next to it. Not if I can help it, he thinks, but with Vala, you can never be too careful. The Marine on guard duty says, "Have a good night, Dr. Jackson," and then winks at him, a gesture Vala doesn't miss.
Standing in the elevator, riding up to the surface with a couple of xenobiologists and one of the Marines who works the control room, she says, "That Marine thought that you were going to sleep with me."
The biologists all snicker. Daniel glares at her, and Vala is wearing her best who, me? expression, except that the corner of her mouth is twitching, like she wants to laugh. "Yes," he says, because what else can he say? That's what the Marine thought - that's probably what all three biologists and the Marine in the elevator think. Daniel's been at SGC long enough to know that the rumor mill beneath the Mountain is more powerful than one of Sam's naquadah bombs, and he's given up trying to stop any of them a long time ago.
The one about Teal'c, Jack and the jar of peanut butter was just too funny to stop, anyway.
"He's terribly unimaginative," Vala says, pulling Daniel out of his head and a terrifying list of things that they might be saying about his relationship with Vala. He blinks at her, and one of the biologists starts to choke. Daniel tries to keep his face neutral, raising his eyebrows at Vala and ignoring the commotion. "I'm sure you're going to do much more than just sleep with me."
Daniel is relieved when the elevator opens at the top of the Mountain; he signs Vala out there, as well, and glares at the sergeant who smirks at him (and leers at Vala) before Daniel grabs Vala's elbow and frog-marches her out to the parking. September in Colorado is gorgeous, it always has been, and the sun's already set when they finally get to Daniel's old beater of a car, but the moon is rising above the mountains, framed against a sky paling from orange to a deep blue. "Earth is very pretty," Vala says, turning her face up to the last of the sunshine, and she looks, for one single moment, honestly normal and innocent.
Then she climbs into the passenger seat of his car, props her feet on the dashboard, and says, "So, where are we going?"
He drives them down into Colorado Springs - after one more knowing look from the guard on duty at the lot checkpoint - and to an Italian restaurant he hasn't been to in years. Jack took him there, once, after Sha're died, and Daniel hasn't been back since, but when he thinks about it, it reminds him of comfort, and the way Jack took care of him, then, after he came back. Daniel doesn't feel that fragile anymore, but somehow Vala makes him feel almost that unguarded, and when the memory of Jack and a bottle of wine and this restaurant floats into his head, it seems like the right place to go.
It's a Tuesday, and the place is almost empty because it's well past normal dinner hours; the maitre'd seats them at a tiny out of the way table and lights the candle that's stuck into an empty wine bottle. When he comes back with menus, he brings a bottle of red wine, on the house, and calls Vala bellissima and winks at Daniel, like Daniel is lucky to be here with her.
He looks across the table at her, frowning, focused on the menu, and while he's watching her, a lock of hair falls down into her eyes. She huffs, trying to blow it back into place, and Daniel reaches out, tucking it behind her ear, before he even realizes that he's moved. Vala looks up, surprised, and she says, "Thank you," the same way she'd said it when he'd shown her Star Wars, like she really means it.
His hand is still on her cheek, and she turns her head and kisses the inside of his wrist; it's a strangely gentle, entirely un-Vala-like thing to do, and Daniel knows that she knows it. She drops her head, flushes, and says, "I'm sorry."
"Don't be," he tells her.
(Daniel was the one to make the final case for Vala being added to SGC payroll, though they're not really paying her much. Her psych evaluations and her apparently genuine enthusiasm helped, but Daniel sat with General Landry in Daniel's office, drinking bitter coffee from the commissary, and Daniel made his case.
She's smart, he told Landry, and more than that, she's clever. She's gotten into some trouble, but she knows how to get out of it, as well. She's traveled to all sorts of places we haven't been, yet, and she's lived among the Goa'uld and the Ori. We could learn from her, and wouldn't you rather have her on our side than theirs?
He didn't say, I think she's wounded, sir, and I think that she needs this chance as much as, or maybe more than we need her. He didn't say, I've been where she is, and she knows that no one trusts her, that no one would have her back. He didn't say, That's what happens when you're alone for as long as she's been. As I've been.
He didn't say, We have to trust her before she'll trust us.
Landry listened, and agreed, and Vala stayed. Underneath the seductive exterior, Daniel recognizes more about her than he would have thought. In more than one way, she's very much like him.)
Vala looks back down at the menu. "What's veal?" she asks.
"Baby cow," Daniel tells her, and folds his menu down. The wine is still open, untouched, on the table; he pours a glass for Vala, and then, after a moment's hesitation, one for himself as well. Either he'll get drunk, cart Vala back to the base in a cab, and come back for his car tomorrow, or he ... won't.
"Oooh," she says happily. "I'll have that, then."
"Murderer," he says, and she scans his face for evidence of the joke before she smiles.
"Am not," she says, sticking her tongue out, and then, serious, "Daniel."
"That's my name." They're interrupted by the waiter, who takes their order - veal scaloppini for Vala, the house specialty, which is something involving a lot of cheese and mushrooms, for Daniel - and drifts away to deliver a check to the only other couple in the restaurant. Vala's quiet when the waiter leaves, and Daniel watches the other couple, college kids, settle their bill and drift outside, so involved in each other that they hardly notice anything else.
He remembers that; being so in love he couldn't think of anything else. Being so consumed by grief that he could hardly get out of bed. Two sides to the same coin, and he hates that he knows that. He turns back to Vala, who's watching him with interest, slightly predatory interest, barely concealed on her face. "Thank you," she says again, "for taking me out."
Daniel shrugs. The waiters are all clustered together at the bar, watching them curiously. Daniel knows that they look like two people on a date, two normal people with glasses and leather jackets and no secrets at all between them, except for the things that haven't been said yet. Not that Daniel has dated much, but he knows how it works - people on a date like this one are still strangers to each other, with life stories left to tell.
They're not like Daniel and Vala, who have shared secrets that are more important than lost lovers and childhood wounds.
Daniel looks across the table at Vala and thinks, I do not know this woman at all, and yet I do. It's a strange thought, and it makes him feel off-balance. Standard operating procedure, same as always with Vala. Even when everything is strange and awkward, it's all the same with Vala.
She taps her fingers on her wine glass, drumming her fingernails against the bowl, and then she picks it up, sniffs it carefully, and downs the whole glass in one go. "That's good," she says, and Daniel tastes it. It is; it's a mid-range bottle, a little sweet, a little spicy, and it's warm going down his throat.
"So," he says.
She's staring at him, with an expression that's half hungry and half curious, and a touch of something sad behind her eyes. Daniel lifts his glass and drains it - he's out of his depth, here, he hasn't dated in years and especially hasn't dated an intergalactic seductress with a shady past and more secrets than he could know.
"Tell me something desperately interesting," Vala says. She reaches across the table and pours herself another glass of wine, fills Daniel's glass when he tilts it toward her, and leans back in her chair, watching him.
"Define desperately," Daniel says. "Define interesting."
"Tell me about the first time you had sex," Vala says.
Daniel chokes on a mouthful of wine, and ducks his head, coughing into a napkin and trying to find a polite answer to that demand. Finally he says, "No."
"You're no fun," Vala says, pouting at him, and, "I'll tell you mine if you'll tell me yours."
"No," Daniel says, but now he's thinking about it, thinking about Marie in college and being terrified that he was going to do something wrong. It ended up being sweet and hot and more intimate than he'd ever imagined, though, and Marie was a warm, smart woman. "Her name was Marie," he says. "I was ... oh, 17 or 18. My second year of college."
"And?" Vala says. "Was it good?"
"I was 18, Vala," he says. "It was sex. Of course it was good - at 18, any sex is good."
"Any sex is good at any age," she says, and winks at him.
"That's not true."
"Well," she says. "Any sex with me is good sex."
"I'll take your word for it," Daniel says, and Vala leans across the table and runs her fingers up the inside of his arm. He shudders a little, against his better judgment, and Vala smirks.
"You don't have to take my word for it," she says. "You can have a first-hand demonstration, if you'd like."
Daniel is saved from having to respond by the approach of the waiter with their food. Vala takes two bites of the veal and chews slowly, washes it down with the rest of her glass of wine, and declares it the third - no, the second - best dead baby animal she's ever eaten, and pours herself another glass of wine. The waiter turns back up with another bottle of wine, and Daniel isn't sure if he's paying or it's still on the house, but Vala's making pleased noises around her dinner and Daniel's half-hard in his pants, again, so he pours himself another glass and resigns the evening to a cab ride back to the Mountain.
The food is good; Vala is quiet while she's eating, and Daniel is starting to feel fuzzy and warm from all the wine. By the time the waiter delivers one plate of tiramisu - and two forks - along with the check, Daniel is drunk, and Vala looks beautiful, face shadowed in the candlelight as she tastes the dessert and hums happily.
He lets her eat all of it, and pays the check at the register. Vala stretches languorously beside at the register, showing a stripe of firm, flat stomach between her jeans and the edge of her top, and leans heavily against him while they wait on the sidewalk for the cab the matire'd has called. "I was engaged, once," she murmurs against his shoulder, and he wraps an arm around her without thinking. She looks up at him and says, "You don't like me very much."
"I find you immensely irritating," Daniel says. "There's a difference."
"You like Samantha, and Teal'c, and Mitchell," she says. "You tolerate me."
"I both liked and tolerated General O'Neill. It's possible."
Vala leans back, hands fisted in Daniel's t-shirt, and looks up at him. She blinks slowly, twice, and then she kisses him. She's tried this before, of course, a dozen times over half a dozen months, and he's always pushed her away. But Daniel is drunk, and Vala tastes like cinnamon and coffee liqueur, and she is warm and soft and willing underneath his hands.
She's manipulative and she lies, and Daniel knows that she's manipulating him even now, though she's drunk and pliant in his arms. He likes Vala, though, despite what he says, and he would miss her if she left, and he is tired of being alone.
He kisses her back, wraps his hands around her waist and she sighs, sinking against him and opening her mouth. He's overcome with a wave of lust so strong he feels 16 again, and when Vala presses a thigh against his erection, he nearly comes right there, standing on the sidewalk in downtown Colorado Springs, kissing an alien and waiting for a taxi.
He gives the cab driver his address, instead of the Mountain; he follows Vala into the back seat, and hesitates. She answers Daniel's question for him, curling against his side - against the bruise from the mission, which shoots a brief spark of pain through Daniel's ribs while she settles - and tucking her head against his shoulder. His ribs are throbbing again, and it's a sudden shot of real life through an entirely dream-like even. "Vala," he says.
"Yes, darling, of course I'm going to put out," she says.
"You're leaning on my bruise," he says, through gritted teeth, because she's put an elbow right in the center of it, and the pain is radiating out in spikes. And Daniel's still frantically turned on; between the lust and the pain and Vala, who's licking the hollow of his throat, he can hardly think.
"Oh!" she says, sitting up, "I'll just," and then she swings a leg over his lap, straddling him, tilting his mouth up to meet hers again. Daniel's ribs still hurt, but Vala is sitting squarely on his dick, squirming a little, sending pleasant jolts of desire up Daniel's spine.
When they pull up in front of Daniel's apartment, Vala wriggles out of the cab headfirst, showing off her ass, and then she turns and winks at the cab driver, before sashaying up the sidewalk to the front door. Daniel feels himself flush and then pays the driver, who winks at Daniel, and he has a brief, fierce desire to tape the eyelids of everyone who's winked at him tonight open for all eternity.
While he's looking for his keys, Vala shoves her hands into the back pockets of his jeans and presses her breasts against his back; it takes him twice as long as normal to find his keys under all the papers in his laptop bag because she's licking the back of his neck and squeezing his ass. He eventually gets the door open and Vala follows him into the apartment, idly wandering around the living room while he drops his keys on the end table and the laptop in the dining room.
Seeing her, standing in his home, knowing that he is intending to take this alien to bed with him, he feels suddenly nervous and a little freaked out, so he says, "Another glass of wine?"
"Certainly, darling," and she's staring at the photos on his bookshelves, pictures of Sam and Teal'c in silver frames, wedged between artifacts and tacky knick-knacks that Jack insists on giving to Daniel, even though Daniel hates them, that Daniel keeps, even though he hates them.
He had a bottle open already, and he pours two glasses. When he comes back to the living room, Vala is holding a photo of SG-1, the photo that someone took on the first anniversary of Daniel's return from Abydos. He knows that picture well, because it's one of the few he has where they're all there, and they're all happy. Even Teal'c mouth is curved, just a little at one corner, and Sam is beaming at the camera, Jack's arm around her shoulders. Daniel is smiling at Jack, and Jack is laughing, head thrown back, at one of his own jokes.
Daniel knows that photo well.
Vala puts the picture back in its place before she takes a glass from his hand. "You miss the ways things used to be," she says, tapping on the frame with a finger.
"No," Daniel says. Vala raises an eyebrow and sips from her glass. "Yes," he says. "I don't want to go back to the way it was, but I miss it."
"You prefer General O'Neill to Cameron and me," she says.
"No," Daniel says, and he doesn't want to have this conversation now, he doesn't want to have it at all, because Daniel knows better than anyone that you can't go back to the way it used to be. He's gone and come back, and it's never been the same after as it was before. Ten years, and all Daniel's learned from Jack and Sam and Teal'c, from Oma, from dying and ascending and falling again, is that the only thing you can do is live now. "No, I don't," he says, and he takes her wine glass from her, sets them both on the bookcase bracketing the photo, and pulls her against him.
"Mmm," Vala says. "Distracting me from my point. Well done, Daniel."
"Shut up," Daniel says. He's going to go to bed with Vala Mal Doran, intergalactic thief and liar and seductress, and he doesn't want to talk anymore. Vala is warm, and alive, under his hands, and she slides against him like a cat when he runs his hands underneath her shirt. He strokes his hands up her back, and says, "Bedroom."
"Don't you want to do it standing up, darling?" Vala says, shoving her hands into the back pockets of his jeans and squeezing his ass.
"All right," she pouts, and as she kisses him again, she pushes him backwards, walking him across the living room.
Daniel steers her around, putting her on the right path to the bedroom, but he's lost in Vala's mouth, and they end up pressed against the hallway wall, Vala squirming underneath him and sliding her fingers under the waistband of his jeans. He runs his hands up Vala's sides, cupping a breast - no bra, he thinks, which means she knew that she was going to get what she wanted, and I've been played and I don't care - and stroking a thumb across her nipple. It hardens under his touch and Vala shivers, sighing against his mouth, and Daniel suddenly needs to see everything.
He pulls back, stripping his own shirt over his head before tugging hers off. He drops them in the hallways and runs his hands over her breasts again, circling a nipple and listening to Vala groan. He kisses her again, hand still on her breast, and Vala's fingers, clever fingers, inch around to thumb open the button on his jeans. "Bedroom," he says again, "now."
"Oh, yes, sir," Vala says, in a breathy parody of Sam, and Daniel laughs, squeezes the breast in his hand and she shudders, fingers tucked down into his boxers, and follows when he pulls away again from her and starts down the hallway.
Vala sprawls out on the bed as soon as she walks in, chest bare, and opens her own jeans, tugging down the zipper to reveal a pale pink triangle of silk. "Coming?" she says.
"Not yet," Daniel says, kicking off his shoes and sinking to the floor in front of her to unlace her boots.
Vala struggles up to her elbows and watches him. "Just where I like my men," she says. "On their knees."
He tosses her boots into a corner and stands up, bracing a knee between her legs on the bed and staring down at her. "Where do you hear this stuff?" he says, and she doesn't get to answer, because Daniel kisses her again, sinking down against her skin and sliding his fingers along her jaw. Vala laughs again, and tugs his jeans and boxers down to his thighs.
"Nice," she says against his kiss. She wraps her fingers around his dick and Daniel jerks against her, her fingers warm and tight. She strokes experimentally and he shudders, fighting down the urge to come right then and there. "Very nice," and she wriggles out of his grasp, sliding down between his thighs and wrapping her mouth around his cock without any notice.
"Oh, God," Daniel says, trying to balance himself on the bed and not collapse on Vala's face, but when she cups a hand around his balls, sliding two fingers back to stroke behind them, he very nearly loses the battles. He looks down, Vala's warm, wet mouth stretched pink around his cock, her tongue stroking the sensitive spot behind the head as she swallows up and down, and wraps a hand around her shoulder, tugging her up and off.
She sits between his legs, wiping the back of her mouth, and Daniel climbs off the bed, stripping the rest of his clothing off and then pulling her jeans and underwear down. The clothing goes in a heap on the floor and Vala squirms backward, propping herself on his pillows with an expression that says, well, what are you waiting for?
He's not waiting for anything anymore. He climbs on the bed, rolls over onto her, covering her with his body. She's warm, and alive, underneath him, and she kisses like she's drowning and looking for air in his lungs. "Oh, Vala," Daniel says. "Oh."
He slides a hand between them, stroking his thumb between her thighs and finding her clit. She twists against him, pushing down toward his hand, and when he slides two fingers inside her, she's wet and hot. Daniel doesn't fall into bed easily, but he doesn't want to wait, and he pulls the hand that's tangled in her hair free, reaching for the bedside table. He kisses her the whole time he's struggling to find a condom in all the other junk he tosses into that drawer, his other hand still moving between her thighs.
He has to move to slide the condom on, and when he sits back on his heels, Vala reaches out and strokes his dick, slowly, twice up and down, and then reaches out and takes the condom from his hand. "What's this?" she says, curiously.
"It's a condom," Daniel says, taking it back and tearing the wrapper open. She squeezes his cock and he shivers, biting down on his lip. "I thought we'd skip having another unexpected baby this year."
"That stops babies?" Vala says.
"No more talking," Daniel says, because a lesson in sex ed on Earth is not what he's thinking of, now, not with her fingers curled around his dick, her thumb rubbing against the head. He nudges her hand off of him, shivers at the loss, and rolls the condom down, slowly, carefully, trying not to come like a teenager from wanting her.
He kisses her, sliding between her thighs, and she hooks her ankle around his waist, pulling him closer. Daniel sinks into her, and Vala clenches around him. He presses his face against her neck, mouth against her pulse point, her breasts pressed against his chest, and stays still for a long moment.
Then he pulls back and thrusts, and Vala writhes underneath him, digging her heel into the small of his back, and Daniel lets go completely. He digs his fingers into her hips, straining his neck to kiss her while he thrusts, and she rises up to meet every thrust with a groan, a moan, a delicious wriggle. "Oh, Daniel," she says against his mouth, her hands skating down his back. "Oh." She grabs his ass, tilting her hips up to meet him, and Daniel is sweaty and shaking and when he comes, Vala clenches around him, shuddering and moaning. She bites his neck and Daniel collapses on top of her, face in her hair. He kisses her ear and she runs her fingers down his back, a gentle touch that makes him twitch like he's being tickled.
He levers himself up onto an elbow and pulls out, slowly, one hand on the condom. He rolls off Vala, who's sprawled in the middle of his bed breathing heavily, one arm flung across her eyes, and tosses the condom in the trashcan. When he settles back onto the bed, she rolls over, propping her chin on a fist on his chest, and traces the edge of his collarbone with one finger.
"So," she says, and pauses.
Daniel waits, for was it as good as you expected, or I told you so, and it doesn't come. He wraps a hand behind her neck and pulls her up, halfway across his chest, and kisses her. Slowly, and with intent - trying to convey everything he's thought since she showed up in his life. When he pulls away, he reaches over and turns off the bedside lamp, before tugging the covers up over them and wrapping an arm around her waist. "Go to sleep, Vala," he says.
"You're not the boss of me," Vala says sleepily, pressing back against his chest.
"No," Daniel agrees, sinking down into sleep. "I'm not."
author's notes: my otp did beta duty. the old 97s provided the title and summary.