Will You Care Her?
Disclaimer: Lots of people own Buffy and Stargate. I, alas, am not counted in that fortunate number.
Hammond looked down from the contol room. A unit of SFs were taking their places in the Gateroom. The iris stubbornly refused to close despite Major Carter's best efforts. The general heard his second in command enter the room.
“Unauthorized gate activation. The iris malfunctioned.”
The pair watched as three figures came through the gate. A fourth, indistinct figure seemed caught in the wormhole.
“This is General George Hammond...”
“I know. Will you care for her?” the woman with white hair and black eyes asked.
“What the...” O'Neill realized that the small bundle that the man with the eye patch carried was moving.
“The child. Will you care for her?”
“Oh, stop with the blood cryptic already.” The Billy Idol wannabe looked up. “She's supposed to be dead. If she stays in our reality, she'll destroy it.”
“But you don't mind if she does the same here?”
“This isn't her reality so she never died here. She won't upset the balance. You'll be safe, she'll be safe, everyone will safe.”
“Sir, she'll suffer from entroscopic...”
The woman in the gate room finished the sentence, “...cascade failure. No, she won't. She never existed in your world and we've changed her so that she can survive in your reality.”
The second man finally spoke. “Please, will you take her? We can't bring her back without killing her.”
O'Neill exchanged a look with his superior. Hammond nodded and his 2IC left the control room.
“Place her on the ramp and step back.”
Eye-patch complied. The trio stepped back as O'Neill entered the room.
“What's her name?”
And with that the figures withdrew through the wormhole, confounding Carter and every other astrophysist that later reviewed the morning's event. The gate shut down. All that was left were a few drops of blood.
The Air Force colonel stooped down and picked up the squirming bundle. He adjusted the blanket and got his first good look at his new baby daughter. “So, Buffy is it? What the heck was your mama thinking?”
“Want Daddy,” a childish wail could be heard in the corridor.
Daniel Jackson followed General Hammond into the infirmary where he proceeded to retrieve the three year old from a frazzled nurse. He tried calming her but Buffy kept crying for her her daddy.
“General? Is Jack okay?” he asked rubbed the girl's back.
“That's what I need you to help me determine. At 0700 a boy was apprehended at the front gate. He had the colonel's ID and Buffy,” Hammond said raising his voice to so that he could be heard over the hysterical child. “We tried calling his home but there has been no answer. Major Carter contacted the sitter but when Miss McClay arrived at O'Neill's residence this morning there was a note on the door saying that he was bringing Buffy here for the day.”
“So, I'm guessing that the loud, grating voice is learned rather that genetic,” the linguist who might now have a ruptured eardrum said to no one in particular.
“No,” Colonel Jack O'Neill tried staring down Mini-Me.
“Not a chance,” the teen replied returning the glare.
“And just how am I supposed to explain you?”
“Distant relative? Defective condom?”
“I wonder if I can return you to Thor?”
“Look at it this way, you can save on babysitting fees while you're on duty.”
The colonel knew he would probably regret it but he didn't really have it in him to separate his clone from Buffy. Of course, he wasn't going to be too easy on the little twerp.
“Oh, I don't think so,” an evil glint entered O'Neill's eye. “I'm not going to be accused of neglecting your education. The deal is this, you have to agree to attend high school and generally live as fifteen year old. No car, no beer and Tara will be in charge when I'm not home.”
A moment later, Jack had his first regret.
“Ya know, teenagers date, Dad,” Jack Junior said. “Can I date Carter?”
“Why you little...”
Daniel had timed his arrival to coincide with the arrival of JJ's school bus. He waited at end of the driveway for the teen to make his way down the street.
“Daniel,” JJ greeted him.
“JJ,” he acknowledged.
“The old man?”
“He's in a stasis pod but we can't contact Thor to fix him. The 'Gate has been shut down pending negotiations.”
“Let's go inside. Tara will need to be told. I'll fill in the rest of the details later.”
- - -
Tara returned from the kitchen with a cup of coffee which she handed to Daniel.
“Jack's taken a turn for the worse. We don't know how long he'll be be in the hospital. Sam and Murray are trying to bring some specialists in but they are running into some bureaucratic red tape.”
“I understand,” Tara murmured.
“Until the situation changes Sam and I will take turns staying here when we are not on duty.” Daniel took a sip of his coffee. “Sam will be over later tonight.”
“Tara,” JJ spoke up. “I'll tell Buffy when she wakes up from her nap.”
- - - -
JJ sat on couch holding Buffy on his lap.
“Yeah, Daddy's sick.”
“He get better?”
“I hope so sweetheart. I hope so. Until then, Uncle Daniel and Aunt Sam will take care of us.”
“General? You're going to be the Man?” JJ slumped on the couch with his morning cup of coffee, one of the few concessions to his mental age. “What the heck are they thinking?”
“You're just jealous.”
“Right, I want to sit on my fat elderly ass at Hammond's desk while my team goes through the gate.”
“The body attached to that elderly ass can still kick your scrawny ass.”
“Yeah, if you can catch me. My knees are still in mint condition.”
“Rub it in.”
“Just doing my job. It was your idea that I relive the Wonder Years.”
“I didn't mouth off to my father back in the '60s.”
“Memory loss in addition to bad knees.” JJ took a sip of coffee. “Nice to know everything will fall apart at the same time.”
A blonde tornado raced into the room, nearly toppling her father over.
“Can we go now Daddy?”
“You betcha squirt.”
Jack O'Neill was a great tactician. He knew when the battle was lost, even if he hated to admit it. She had out maneuvered him less than ten minutes after arriving at the shelter.
He had filled out the paperwork the previous week. Every kid needed a dog and Buffy was finally old enough to have one. He thought she'd pick out a cute little puppy. He'd have to stock up on antihistamines for Daniel's visits.
“I hear you kid,” JJ came into the living room. He could see Buffy holding a little ball of black fur. “So, what did you bring home?”
Buffy raced over to him and pushed the fur ball towards him.
“You got a kitten.”
“Uh, huh. Guess what her name is?”
“No silly. This is Miss Kitty Fantas, Fantas,” she scrunched up her nose before continuing triumphantly, “Fantastico!”
“Miss Kitty Fantastico,” JJ cringed inwardly. “Wow, that's an impressive name. Can we call her Kitty for short?”
“I guess so.” She pulled the kitten back towards her chest.
“So where's Dad?”
“He's in the backyard with your surprise,” she said before heading off toward her room.
JJ stepped out the back door and saw Jack with a large, yellow dog of indeterminate breeding.
“So, this one's mine?”
“Please tell me Buffy didn't name him,” he pleaded.
“I see you've met Miss Kitty.” Jack smirked.
“Going to warn him?”
“So, what's his name?”
“Don't worry. It's a good name.”
“Son, meet Spike.”
“So who's coming?” JJ asked as he turned off the lawn mower.
“Weir, Sumner, and McKay.”
“You had to invite McKay?”
“He's the lead scientist on the project,” Jack said as scrubbed the grill on the back patio
“You mean the head geek.” There were times when JJ gloried in his teenage persona. This was one of them. “You know he's going to make puppy eyes at Auntie Sam. He might even drool.”
“Carter's not coming.” Jack put a little more muscle into the job at hand. “The cop's in town for the weekend.”
“Buffy's going to be disappointed.”
“She won't miss Shanahan though.”
“Yeah.” JJ pulled his t-shirt over his head and used it to wipe the sweat off of his face. “You know she's got a new name for him this week.”
He hated to ask but it was the only way JJ was going tell him. “What is it?”
“Mr. Poopyhead, and no, I had nothing to do with this one. I'd have called him Mr. Sh..” at the warning look on Jack's face he stopped. “Little pitchers, huh?”
- - -
Rodney McKay never cared much for social events and was honest enough to acknowledge that he was not a social animal. The general's informal barbecue was something of a surprise. A BDU-clad blonde with pink hair ribbons had all but attached herself to him for most of the afternoon and into the evening.
That blonde was now firmly ensconced in his lap, glaring at Colonel Sumner, the Atlantis Expedition's ranking military officer.
Sumner was at a loss at how do deal with the General's little terror, especially with her older brother silently egging her on. Sumner then made a fatal error. He suggested that perhaps Buffy was tired and that maybe she should head to bed.
Her eyes narrowed. She gave McKay a quick peck on the cheek, slid off his lap and left the room.
McKay silently watched as she snuck back into the room carrying some string. Buffy moved close behind Colonel Sumner and dropped out of his visual range. When she popped back up, she winked and scooted back out of the room sans string.
Half an hour later, the evening ended with a bang as Sumner stood up and tripped, crashing into the table.
- - -
The first members of the Atlantis Expedition, a small squad of military personnel led by Colonel Sumner and Dr. Weir, exited the gate. They were followed by additional military personnel, supply pallets and civilian scientists. As the last member of the expedition came through the gate, two additional items came through the wormhole before it shut down.
Dr. Weir picked up the bottle of champagne and a teddy bear with big bow and handmade card. As she read the card she had a difficult time keeping a straight face.
“Rodney, the bear's for you. A gift from your new girlfriend.”
So, Teal'c,” Daniel asked his friend and teammate as they sat down in the base cafeteria, “do you need a ride to the mall?”
The Jaffa inclined his head towards the archaeologist as he replied, “I do not.”
“You already have her present?”
“I hadn't realized you had gone off base.” Daniel pushed the rather unappetizing mystery meat off to the side before stabbing at some of the mystery vegetables on his plate. “I was kind of hoping for some company.”
“I did not go off base.”
“So the internet? Amazon?”
“Sgt. Remington in supply was most helpful.”
“Teal'c you didn't get her a weapon?” Daniel sounded somewhat frightened. “She's only five.”
“I did not.”
Buffy wasn't really enjoying her second birthday party. The kiddie party earlier in the day had scored her eight new Barbies, two teddy bears, and a tiara. The presents from the adult party weren't quite as much fun.
Daddy had gotten her a new bike but forgot to put the training wheels on it. Hello. Five.
The Simpson's t-shirt that JJ got her was SO not her.
Auntie Sam had done better with a really nice bike helmet. Practical but stylish.
Uncle Danny's present was book on ancient Egypt. Mummies, yuck. She just knew Rodney would have gotten her something better but he hadn't been able to come.
She opened Uncle T's present last. She was not hopeful.
“Cool,” Buffy's eyes widened as she realized what was int the box. “Can I try them on now Daddy?”
She grabbed the box and fled before Jack could reply.
“Teal'c?” Jack questioned after his daughter left the room. “BDUs for Christmas and now these?”
“I believe that she would make an excellent warrior O'Neill.”
“She's five years old for crying out loud.”
“And yet she has already managed to lay low a more powerful opponent,” Teal'c said calmly.
“What are you talking about?”
“DanielJackson told me of the incident involving Colonel Sumner.”
Sam and JJ snorted in amusement as Jack sputtered.
Once in her bedroom, Buffy quickly stripped down and changed into her newest, and coolest, outfit.
Black turtleneck. Black cargo pants. Black socks. Black high top sneakers.
She looked in her mirror and realized that something wasn't quite right.
She looked like a soldier. Just like she thought Auntie Sam might look. Except for one thing...
“Uh, 'Dad'?” JJ interrupted the discussion between Jack and the members of SG-1. “It's been almost a half-hour. There's no way that it took her that long to change.”
“It's been a long a long day for her,” Daniel interjected. “Maybe she fell asleep.”
“Yeah, right. You go right on living in your dream world Danny boy,” Jack said. “JJ, go find out what our little princess is up to.”
When JJ finally caught up with her, Buffy was in Jack's bathroom.
JJ was caught between outrage and absolute hysteria.
Buffy's lower lip trembled.
He looked over the damage before he held his hand out towards her.
“Okay, let's fix this.”
The adults were being to become concerned as it was another fifteen minutes before JJ came back to the living room.
“So, did she fall asleep?” Daniel asked.
“Nope.” JJ said. “Come on in Buffy.”
Buffy gingerly entered the room.
Teal'c smiled serenely.
Buffy O'Neill looked like a mini-Samantha Carter.
“Buffy! What did you do to your hair?”
“So, Fran, what do you know about the new neighbors?” Kay watched as a moving van turned into the driveway of the old Webster house. “Oh, don't give me that innocent look. Your cousin has been trying to unload that place for months.”
“Divorced, military, two kids,” Fran offered.
“She must have gotten one hell of a settlement to afford that place.”
“Is the word out yet?” Kay asked.
“Not really. Janice wants first crack so she's keep it close the vest.”
“She let it slip on the third margarita. Apparently, the general is a silver fox.”
“General? Oh man, let the hunt begin,” Kay grinned.
“And may the best woman win!”
“Daddy,” Buffy ran to her bedroom door and called out. “Incoming!”
Downstairs, Jack groaned while Jay and Daniel snickered. In the last three days, no less than seven of the local ladies had stopped by with a housewarming gift. Two pans of lasagna, a tuna casserole, plus cookies and pies had made their way into the O'Neill kitchen. And while Jack appreciated the pies, the attention was getting to be a bit much. As Jack went to answer the doorbell, Jay and Daniel retreated to the safety of the backyard with Spike.
“So what do you think it will be this time,” Daniel asked as he threw a stick for Spike to fetch.
“Jack's sanity,” Jay replied.
“He still has it?”
“Very funny Uncle Daniel. You know, they're scoping you out too.”
“Yeah, it was like dealing with Anise again.”
Both man and teenager lapsed into silence at the memory of the predatory Tok'ra scientist.
Spike brought the stick back to Jay who threw it again.
A few minutes later, Jack joined them.
“We've been invited to a little get together tomorrow afternoon to meet the neighbors,” he said.
“You mean there are more,” Jay asked in mock horror.
She knew she was supposed to be on her best behavior. Dad, Jay, and Uncle Daniel were all keeping an eye on her as if she couldn't be trusted. But if just one more lady said what a sweet little girl she was, Buffy was going to hurl. Hello, like could it be any more obvious that they were trying to use her to get to her dad? Even a couple of older girls were trying that routine. Oh, you're so cute and what school is Jay going to? Gag.
It was only when she overheard a couple of women whispering about Dad and Uncle Daniel that she got the idea. Buffy had read the book Heather Has Two Mommies so she knew exactly what the women had meant. It was too perfect.
She moved closer to the women. Buffy sniffed as if she were about to cry and stuck her lip out. Yep, that got their attention.
“Oh sweetie, what's wrong?” the lady a blue dress asked. Buffy thought her name was Kay.
“I miss Sam.” Buffy even managed a tear.
“Who is Sam?” the other woman asked.
“Sam's Daddy's friend back in Colorado. They are going to get married after Daddy retires.”
Later that night, after Buffy was sent of to bed, Jay and the older two men sat in the living room drinking coffee.
“Okay, that was one weird group of neighbors you have Jack. One minute every unattached woman over thirty was hovering around you, the next just a couple of guys.”
“Just a couple of gay guys Daniel,” Jay emphasized.
“What?” Jack turned to the boy.
“Since neither of you seemed interested in any of the women, some of them thought the two of you were together,” Jay snickered. “Buffy heard two women speculating about it and tried to help.”
“And just how did she try to help,” Jack asked.
“She told them that you and Daniel weren't a couple.” He paused for a moment for dramatic effect. “You and Sam were.”