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I Almost Told Him Today

Categories: Angst, Romance, Thoughts
Rating: PG
Content Warning: Mild Profanity
Spoilers: Children of the Gods, Fire and Water, Secrets, Holiday, Forever in a Day, A Hundred Days, Maternal Instinct, Scorched Earth, Meridian, Fallen, Lifeboat
Author's Notes: The idea for this story came to me after reading one in which it was Daniel who almost told Sam several times that he loved her.

I almost told him today.

We all thought that he was dead, burned to death right before our eyes.  We didn't know that it had all been a trick, false memories planted in our minds by an alien bent on learning the fate of his mate from Daniel.  I don't want to think about what would have happened if we hadn't realized the truth.  Even if the alien had let Daniel leave, he wouldn't have been able to come home since he had no radio and no way to tell us it was him when he dialed the gate.

During those awful days that we thought he was dead, I felt like something inside me was dead, too.  Except for the death of my mom, no pain I've felt in my life was as bad as that.  I couldn't count the hours I spent crying.  By the time we held the memorial service at the base and then the wake, I had no more tears to cry.

When I saw him alive and well, albeit drenched to the skin, I wanted to throw my arms around him and hug him till his eyes popped out.  It took a lot to keep myself from doing that.  I held off until later, after we were all home safe and sound, the debriefing was done, and Daniel had been given a clean bill of health.  Then I went to his office, wrapped my arms around him, and told him how glad I was that he was okay.  I almost cried again at that point, but I held in the tears.  I also held in the words that were burning in my mind, words that I knew he would not welcome, the words, "I love you."

When did I fall in love with Daniel?  I fell in love with his brilliant mind before I even met him.  Catherine had told me about him, but, because I thought he was dead, killed on that first mission through the gate, I never bothered to find out more about him.  After I learned that he wasn't dead after all, I did some digging into his academic records and was amazed at what I read.  I knew before I even met him that I'd like him.

And then I did meet him, and hoo boy.  Daniel has no idea how turned on I was in that cartouche room as he and I clicked like two pieces of a puzzle, our minds totally in sync.  It was thrilling and so stimulating.  They say that smart is sexy, and that is so true, especially when the guy has beautiful blue eyes, a gorgeous face, and a really nice body, although I couldn't tell about that third thing until the first time I saw him in a T-shirt.

Unfortunately, there was a big problem, one with glorious black hair, a figure many women would kill for, and the unwavering love of her husband.  Daniel was married, totally off-limits.  And so I ignored the things I was feeling, shoved them way down deep inside.  He was my friend and teammate and nothing more.  That's all he could ever be.

Since that first day, I've come to love Daniel in so many ways.  He has become such a good friend to me, one who shares my passion for knowledge and never ceases to amaze me with his intellect and dizzying leaps of logic.  I love working with him, combining our knowledge and skills on projects.  I feel very comfortable in our friendship, the relationship we share, and I'm pretty sure that Daniel does, too.  It would probably shock the hell out of him if he ever found out that I love him as more than just a friend.

For over six months I've succeeded in keeping those deeper feelings locked up inside me, until today when they grew so strong that they just burst right out, almost into the open.  But Daniel is still married, so I need to put those feelings back where they were.  I have my friend back, and that's what matters most.

I almost told him today.

God, what an awful day this has been.  I found out that Dad has cancer.  He and I haven't been close in years, but to find out that I might lose him was devastating.  What hurt just as much was seeing his disappointment in me when I turned down his offer to get me into NASA.  He wanted to do that for me before he died, and being unable to tell him the real reason why I said no is tearing me apart.  I want to tell him the truth so badly.  I want him to be proud of me, to see how important what I'm doing is, not just for Earth but for the whole galaxy.

It was an awful day for Daniel, too.  I can't even imagine how he feels, knowing that Apophis fathered a child with his wife, getting his wife back for a few short hours only to lose her again to the Goa'uld inside her.

After we were all back at the SGC, and all the post-mission stuff was dealt with, Daniel could tell that I was upset about something.  At first, I didn't want to talk about it, but when he looked at me with those caring eyes of his, I broke down and told him.  He sat with me for I don't know how long as I cried and shared with him things about me and my dad.  Daniel had just suffered a horribly painful day of his own, yet there he was, giving me comfort and trying to make me feel better.  Nobody could have a better friend than him.

As we sat together, I came so close to blurting out the words I'd held inside and telling him how I really felt about him.  But, of course, I didn't.  Sha're is still out there, and Daniel is more determined than ever to save her.  I hope he succeeds.  Yes, it will mean that I'll never be with him like I want to be, but he'll be happy, and that's more important.

I almost told him today.

As he lay dying inside Ma'chello's body, I begged him to hold on, not to leave me.  The words "I love you" were burning on my tongue like a firebrand.  How I managed to keep them in is a mystery to me.

It scares me to think about how close we came to losing him.  When the heart of the body he was in stopped, I swear that my own heart stopped, too.  All the time that Janet was giving him CPR, I could barely breathe.  I was praying like I haven't prayed in more years than I can remember.

After Ma'chello finally realized that what he was doing was wrong, and I'd managed to figure out how I could get Daniel's consciousness back into his own body, Ma'chello expressed his regret that he wouldn't survive to give us what we'd need to break the code he'd used to write all the instructions for his weapons against the Goa'uld.  I tossed his words aside, telling him hurriedly that I'd figure it out.  I didn't care about the damn code or all that technology.  All I cared about was saving Daniel before it was too late.

Ironically, as much as this drove home to me how much I care about Daniel, it also drove home how much he loves his wife.  The determination in his voice and the tears he shed as he vowed that he would find her were heartbreaking, even more so considering the fact that they were nearly the last words he ever spoke.

So, here I am, still in the same position as before, in love with a man who can't be mine.  Why couldn't I have fallen for a guy who was available?  It just isn't fair.  I really need to get over these feelings for him and move on.

I almost told him today.

Sha're is dead, as is Daniel's dream of saving her.  The memorial service was today.  It was held on Abydos, and it was a beautiful service.  I don't know how Daniel held it together as he spoke the words and performed the ceremony of weighing Sha're's heart against a feather.  I could see the pain in his eyes, the desolation.

I'm afraid that we're going to lose him, too.  A couple of years ago, he told me that when he got Sha're back, he'd be leaving the program since his search for her was the reason why he stayed.  Now that she is dead, will he see no reason to remain?  Could he continue going through the gate on missions knowing that his primary reason for doing so can never be fulfilled?  If he does decide to quit, what can we say to make him stay?  If he decides to leave, I am determined to do all I can to change his mind.  That determination isn't born just from my own desire to keep him with us but also from the knowledge that we need him, that Earth and the Stargate Program need him.  He is too important to lose.

Shortly before the service began, Daniel said something that puzzled me.  He said that Sha're asked him to find her son.  I don't understand how she could have asked him anything.  Amaunet was in control the entire time as she tried to kill him.  It was only at the very end that, with her dying breath, Sha're spoke, telling Daniel that she loved him.  I think that Daniel saying the words back to her after she was already gone, caressing her face so tenderly, was one of the most heartbreaking things I've ever seen.

Since then, I've wanted to hold him, to cradle him in my arms and tell him that it's okay to cry.  But he's holding his pain deep inside, not wanting anyone to see it.  Daniel once told me that it was okay to feel, that you didn't have to be tough all the time.  He's trying to be tough now, and I want to tell him that he doesn't need to be.  I so want to tell him how much I love him and that I will be there for him.  But I really can't do that, now can I.  The man just lost his wife, the woman he adored.  I'd feel like a complete jerk to drop that bombshell on him.  Of course, there's also the fact that he wouldn't welcome the revelation.

I know that it's going to take Daniel a long time to get over Sha're.  He loved her so much.  Until he's ready to move on and love again, I can't let him know how I feel.  So, I need to keep my feelings for him buried inside.  After all this time, I've gotten good at that.  Sometimes, I can even forget that I feel that way about him.  Not often, but sometimes.

I almost told him today.

I am so proud of him and how he came up with the solution to the problem with the Gadmeer and Enkarrans.  The rest of us saw no way out that would save both the Gadmeer civilization and the people we had brought to this planet, but Daniel refused to give up on finding a resolution.  He nearly sacrificed his life in his efforts to turn was seemed to be a hopeless situation into one that would work for everyone.

I'm still a little angry at Colonel O'Neill for what he did, and I'm betting that General Hammond will be angry, too.  There will likely be hell to pay when we get back home.  Right now, though, I can't stop smiling.  The Gadmeer civilization will be reborn, and the Enkarrans will be going home to be reunited with their people.  Daniel looks happy.  I see that so rarely nowadays.  It's wonderful to see him smile, to see his eyes bright with satisfaction.  It made me want to hug him and just blurt right out those words I've been holding inside me for so long.  But it certainly isn't the time or place for that.

I'm beginning to wonder if there ever will be a right time or place.  It's been a year since Sha're was killed, and the shadow of her death still looms large over Daniel.  When he thinks that nobody's looking, I see the grief in his eyes, the sorrow on his face.  He still loves her so much.

A few months ago, I worried again that he was going to leave us.  Finding Sha're's son meant that Daniel no longer had a specific purpose for staying with the program and SG-1.  For days after the alien Oma Desala left Kheb with the boy, I dreaded what might come, the resignation that Daniel might give to General Hammond, as he did in the vision that Sha're gave to him through the ribbon device.  But, for some reason known only to him, Daniel decided to stay with us, something for which I am so grateful.

I have to admit that I'm more than a little confused about things these days.  Sometimes, what I feel for Daniel is so strong that I'm sure that I won't be able to hold it in any longer, but, lately, I've also been feeling things for someone else, another man I can't have.

It was when Colonel O'Neill was trapped on Eudora that I started feeling something.  I thought that I was just upset that I couldn't find a way to get him home and that I was missing him as a friend.  But when I saw him kiss Laira, it hurt.  I was jealous, which shocked the hell out of me.  Those feelings haven't gone away in the months that have passed since then.  And I know with certainty that he feels the same way about me.  We had no choice but to confess that we had feelings for each other during the Zatarc test.  Neither of us actually used the 'L' word, though.

Feeling like this for my commanding officer is one of the stupidest things I've ever done and just as painful and frustrating as falling in love with a married man.  What is it with me and developing feelings for guys who can't be mine?  The thing with Narim wasn't real love, though.  More than anything, I was touched and flattered by how he felt about me.  On top of that, he is a terrific guy.  He reminds me of Daniel in many ways, which may be another reason why I came to care about him like I did.  As for Martouf, though I had deep feelings for him and it hurt terribly when I had no choice but to kill him, I recognize that the main reason for those feelings was what Jolinar left behind in me.  The love for him was hers, not mine.

So, here I am in the impossible position of having romantic feelings for two men.  I can't help but think of the Mary MacGregor song "Torn Between Two Lovers", except that neither of these men is my lover, and I have my doubts that either of them ever will be.  The colonel certainly never will be as long as we are in the same chain of command.  As for Daniel, I still keep watching for some sign that he's ready to have a relationship with someone else.  I still have dreams of being with him.  Sometimes, like today, I feel like shouting from some rooftop how much I love, admire and respect him.

Though I cannot let myself hope that the colonel and I have a chance at romance, that hope in regards to Daniel is still alive.  I just need to be patient and give him more time.

I almost told him today.

Daniel is dying.  I am going to lose the man I have loved for five years.  God, this hurts so much.  I feel like someone has ripped open my heart.  I can't bear this pain.  It's killing me.

As I sat at his bedside, I tried to convey what he means to me, how he has changed me, made me a better person.  I thought about the love for him that I never expressed, all the things inside me that I felt for him, the hopes and dreams that now will never come true.  As my tears came, the words almost did, too, those three words I've nearly spoken to him on so many occasions in the past.  But I didn't say them, and, now, it's too late.  Daniel is in a coma and will likely never awaken.  He should already be dead.  Janet doesn't know how he's managed to hold on for so long.

What am I going to do without him?  How am I going to keep going through the Stargate?  How can I keep coming to this place knowing that I will never see Daniel again?  I don't know if I can.  Just the mere thought of working here day to day with the memories of Daniel everywhere I look is too much to bear.  I wish it had been me.  I wish that I was the one lying there, dying.  If I could, I'd trade places with him.  I already feel like I'm dying.  Can a person die inside yet still be alive on the outside?  I think I'm going to find out because, once Daniel is gone, I don't think I'll ever truly be alive again.

I almost told him today.

Daniel is back, a real, flesh and blood Daniel.  I cannot express in words the joy I felt when I laid eyes upon him as he came down those stairs.  I wanted to dash up to him, throw my arms around him, and hug him forever.  The knowledge that he has complete amnesia really put the brakes on.  I have to admit that it hurt a little when he stopped me from touching him and looked at me like I was a total stranger.

In his tent, I said everything I could think of to convince him to come back with us.  I told him about himself, about the wonderful, brilliant, selfless person I knew him to be.  I wanted to say a lot more, but I was afraid of overdoing it.

It was when I was leaving that he said what almost made me confess my feelings for him.

"Was there ever anything between us?"

Those words nearly bowled me over.  How I managed to remain calm on the outside is a mystery to me, considering the state I was in on the inside.  I don't think I've ever come closer to telling him that I love him than I did at that moment.  I was almost shaking with the desire to utter the words.  But I was afraid to do so, and so, instead, I told him what was technically true, that we had never been more than friends.

This past year without Daniel has been so lonely.  Not a day went by that I didn't think about him, that I didn't wish he was with us.  The things I feel for him have never faded.  On some days, especially in the beginning, I had a hard time coping and wanted to just go somewhere far away and never come back.  Every time we got a new man on the team, deep inside, I resented him being there, in Daniel's place.  I resented Jonas Quinn, too, for quite a while, feeling that it should have been he who pulled the core out of the Naquadria bomb rather than Daniel.  If Daniel had died rather than ascended, I don't think I could ever have forgiven Jonas or his people.  But knowing that Daniel was alive and well somewhere out in the universe made everything easier to bear.  It still hurt; I still ached for him every day, but I could live with the pain and even be happy once in a while.

Daniel is back on Earth now, having chosen to come home, which is a good thing since I'm not the only person who wouldn't have accepted him choosing not to come back.  One way or another, Colonel O'Neill would have gotten Daniel back to Earth, even if he had to knock Daniel out and drag him through the gate.  I'd have helped.

I'm not sure what's going to happen now.  Will Daniel get his memories back or are they gone forever?  If they never come back, can I really hope to someday have a life with him, the life I still want so badly?  Maybe we could start fresh.  He could get to know me all over again, without the memories of his beloved wife getting in the way.  Does that sound petty and selfish, that I like the idea of Daniel never getting back those memories of Sha're so that her ghost can't come between us?  I really shouldn't think that way.  Besides, if he never remembers Sha're, he will also never remember our years of friendship, and I want him to remember.  I want my friend back.

One thing's for sure.  Finding Daniel has killed the last traces of the feelings I used to have for Colonel O'Neill.  Daniel's 'death' and ascension got rid of most of them.  Suffering through the pain of losing Daniel made me realize that what I felt for him was so much more than what I could ever feel for the colonel.  Truthfully, I think that what I experienced for the colonel was just infatuation.  It was never real love, not like what I feel for Daniel.

Now that Daniel is back, maybe we can finally be more than friends.  I just need to give him time and space to adjust and, hopefully, get his memories back.  I am certain, now, that, someday, I'm going to tell him that I love him.  It's just a matter of time.

I almost told him today.

It was supposed to be just another day spent on yet another mission.  How were we to know that we'd almost lose Daniel again, and in a way that I could never have imagined?

Daniel's mind could have been irretrievably lost when Pharren downloaded the consciousness of twelve people into his brain.  He was no longer our Daniel.  He was Martice, the arrogant sovereign of Talthus.  He was Tryan, the noble crew member of the sleeper ship Stromos.  He was Keenin, the scared little boy who'd had to leave his mother behind on a planet doomed to destruction.  As I did everything I could to make Pharren reverse what he'd done, I feared that we would be unable to get Daniel back.

I was holding my breath as the transference was going on from Daniel's brain to Pharren's, scared to death that his consciousness would be lost or that it would still be there in his body but psychologically damaged.  I knew that I should check to make sure that everything was working all right with the Naquadah generator that was hooked up to supply the ship with power, but I didn't want to leave Daniel's side.  When he woke up and started to talk, I wanted to shout for joy, which his poor, aching head would not have appreciated.

He was slipping in and out of consciousness on the way back to the Stargate and was taken straight to the infirmary.  I didn't want to leave him, but there were things to be dealt with, like post-mission exams and the debriefing.  As soon as all those things were taken care of, I was right back in the infirmary, sitting at Daniel's bedside.  He looked pale, and I was worried about him even though Janet said that he was okay and just needed rest and some time to recuperate.

I think I'd been sitting there for around two hours when Daniel woke up.  I smiled down at him and said hi.  I told him that I'd been really worried about him and that he was going to be okay.  I came oh so close to following that up with a declaration of love, but I held it back.

But then something incredible happened.  Daniel looked up at me with sleepy blue eyes, the eyes that I love so well, and said, "I love you."

I was so stunned that I forgot how to speak.  I just gaped at him like a complete dunce.  By the time I got over the shock and thought to say the words back to him, he was asleep again.

I just sat and stared at him after that, my mind all awhirl.  For all these years, I have wanted to say those very words to him, and he had beaten me to the punch.  Daniel loves me?  Oh my God.  Can it really be true?  Can he really feel the same way for me that I do for him?

I am on cloud nine, more than nine.  Is there a cloud ten?  A cloud one hundred?  Whatever the highest number is, that's where I am.  Daniel loves me!

It's just a couple of minutes before midnight now, and Daniel is still asleep.  I didn't tell him today that I love him, but I will tomorrow and every day after that for the rest of my life.  My wanting and waiting are finally over, and my new life with Daniel is about to begin.


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