This came to me after having my mother-in-law over for dinner and reflecting on family. Sometimes they're a nuisance, but they are precious to have.
"Come on, Sam," said Daniel. "This is important."
"What could be so important?" asked Samantha Carter, wearily. It had been a long week since her dad had died. And she wasn't up to company.
"It'll just be us," persisted Daniel. "Me, Teal'c and Jack..... and you, of course."
Sam sighed. She knew Daniel would just keep at it until she gave in. And this company she could stand to have with her.
"Okay. But just for a couple of hours...." she asked.
"Sure," agreed Daniel. A bit too readily, she thought. "We'll be there at 8. And don't do anything, we'll bring everything we need."
What do they need to bring? Sam wondered... but forgot as she tidied the house. The guys wouldn't expect a lot this soon after Jacob died, but she needed to keep busy and cleaning would help.
At exactly 8 o'clock, there was a knock on the door, and Sam welcomed the rest of SG-1 into her home. Daniel and Teal'c had bags of food and drink, Jack brought up the rear.
"Make yourself at home," said Sam. "You know where everything is.... Sir, what do you need to do with that?" She pointed at the box in his hands.
"I think in the living room," he shrugged. "I don't quite know what's in here myself." At Sam's puzzled look, he went on, "Daniel and Teal'c organized everything -- this is their idea."
"Oh. Okay, then. Put it wherever..." Sam said. "I'll see if Daniel and Teal'c need any help."
Sam went into the kitchen and stopped in amazement. "What did you do? Buy out a supermarket?" Daniel and Teal'c had almost every kind of her favorite foods spread out on all the available counter space and Daniel was just putting what looked like that special Ben and Jerry's ice cream she adored in her freezer.
"Tonight is special. And it is about you, Samantha," said Teal'c. "And food is an important part of what we need to do."
"What is going on?" Sam demanded.
"In a minute. Take, ummm, here take the wine and this plate of cheese and crackers into the living room and sit!" commanded Daniel.
Giving in to the inevitable, Sam did as she was told and joined Jack in the living room. "Want some?" she offered.
"Hmmm.... I haven't eaten, so I'll see if Daniel brought any beer and join you while they set up." Actually, Jack's assignment from Daniel and Teal'c was to keep Sam out of the kitchen while they set everything up. He knew in a vague way they were being thoughtful, but really didn't quite know what was going on.
Jack got his beer and another platter of munchies and joined Sam in the living room. They nibbled at the food in a comfortable silence for a short while.
Daniel and Teal'c came in with more food and another bottle of wine. They brought out at least a dozen candles from the box Jack had brought in. They lit the candles and turned off the lights. The candlelight made the room more intimate and peaceful. Peacefulness wasn't something Sam had a lot of recently, so this felt good.
"Okay, Sam. It's time. Ummm.... Let's sit around her. Jack, sit next to Sam – Teal'c on the other side," directed Daniel.
Jack joined Sam on the couch and his warm presence was very comforting. Teal'c sat in the armchair just to her left.
"I think we are ready, Daniel," said Teal'c solemnly. "Let us join hands."
Not something that Jack would normally go along with, he trusted that Daniel and Teal'c knew what they were doing. And a chance to hold Sam's hand was worth doing anything they could think up. The four of them linked hands in a circle.
Daniel looked into Sam's eyes, and said, "Sam, I don't think you realize how much we all have envied you Jacob. He was more than an ally to us, he was family. He was your dad." Daniel paused to take a deep breath. "The rest of us haven't had much in the way of family for a long time and in many ways we now are a family. But you were lucky enough to have a father. Your real dad."
Sam didn't realize at what point the tears started to flow. She was grateful for the firm grasp of hands on either side of her and the warm presence of Jack O'Neill close by her side.
Daniel continued, "None of the rest of us has had that kind of family for a long time. Longer than I can remember, for me."
Teal'c added, "My parents have been dead for many years. My mother died on Chulak and my father died at the hand of Cronus."
After a moment of silence Jack said quietly, "It's been a very long time...." His voice trailed off.
They sat together, comfortable in the silence. Daniel said, "It's an unfortunate occasion that comes to most of us at some point. But we are now all officially orphans. It's not an organization that we choose to belong to, but one that chooses us."
"It's a sad group to belong to, this society of orphans, but welcome to the club, Sam."