We're walking down the main hall when I suddenly feel a hard cramp. I stop dead and hold my breath.
"My One?" Teal'c stops too, and cocks his head at me.
Another cramp hits, and I want to double over. "I think . . . oh damn . . . Home, please tell Janet to find us."
And with a pop, my doctor is by my side. "Jack! Oh boy, is it time?"
"Ow-w-w," I give up trying to stay cool, and hold onto Teal'c's arm hard enough to leave bruises. "Oh yeah, it's time. Sebal'c is impatient all of a sudden."
"Okay, remember the breathing we've been doing?" Janet takes my other arm, and we head towards the cavern holding our favorite waterfall and pool. "I want you to practice those nice deep breaths for me."
So I do, and it helps just long enough for another cramp to seize my belly, and take all my breath away. Teal'c's other arm is around my waist now, and its warmth is something I can focus on through the pain.
"Janet, I take back everything I ever said that was even remotely humorous about giving birth." Gritting my teeth, I wait through another contraction before resuming our walk down the suddenly long corridor.
"On behalf of women everywhere, I appreciate that, Jack." Her smile is wide, and I chuckle. "We should digitally record your birth for prosperity."
"Wrong, Janet, that's just so wrong," I grimace again, and wonder why the cramps seem to be speeding up. "Why is this happening so fast? Shouldn't there be more time between contractions?"
"You're writing a whole new chapter, my friend." Janet triggers the door, and the warmer air lets me relax a little. "The sooner you dilate, the sooner Sebal'c will come out. I'm going to check you the moment we're in the water, Jack. Hold on and don't go in too deep. I'll be on my knees at some point."
This time, my whole body seizes, and I just want to curl up and die. My panting isn't getting enough oxygen into my lungs. That contraction ends, and almost immediately another one starts. Teal'c strips me quickly, guiding me into the warm waters of the pool. That helps a little, and I float in the water for almost a minute before the cramps hit again. Janet is between my legs now, and her fingers are sliding into me without any trouble at all.
"Whoa, you've widened significantly. The membrane is beginning to tear." She keeps us informed of the changes while I pant through the continuous contractions. "I can feel his head, sweetheart."
I'm panting and seizing up while Teal'c holds me safe and keeps me afloat. There's definitely a tearing feeling now like nothing I've ever felt before. It hurts worse than the knife wound I got on P4S36. A cloud of blood suddenly blooms in the water, and I can feel our son shift down a little further.
"Okay, Jack, you're doing great." Janet puts her hand back up my channel. "His head is almost all the way through the membrane. He's got hair."
I have to laugh although it's a poor thing. "Well . . . we . . . know . . . he's . . . got a . . . little human . . . in him."
"My One," Teal'c has tears in his eyes when they gaze down at me. "You are the bravest man I have ever met."
"Argh!" I'm too busy spasming all over to acknowledge his compliment. Right about now I should be yelling at him but I only have enough energy to pant. The head must be finally through because I have this urge to push really hard.
"Wait, Jack, no pushing just yet. His shoulders have to slip through first or the tearing will be even worse." Janet has both hands inside of me now and that should hurt but damned if I can feel it at all amongst the other pain. "He's doing great, Jack, and so are you."
The pain is in waves now, washing over me like a high tide and swamping me in a morass of red-hot lava. My skin is prickling all over as if to let steam escape through my pores. My hands are clutching my belly, and it feels like the baby is going to explode out of my belly button. There's just pain and more pain and I can feel myself go gray around the edges.
"Almost there, Jack, when I say push, go for it." Janet's voice is soothing. "I know it hurts, but you're doing great. Let yourself move with the contractions. He's almost ready."
Time doesn't have any meaning at the moment. It feels like I've been torn in two for hours now. I'm whimpering almost continuously while Teal'c holds me close, and says my name in a deep whisper that helps keep me focused.
"Okay, Jack, it's time to push." Janet's hands do something inside of me, and I gather my energy to push.
********* Teal'c *********
O'Neill pushes so hard, he almost slips from my grasp. His face is a mask of pain, and I wish with all my heart I could take it from him. But he collapses back into my arms, and continues panting.
Janet is on her knees between his legs with both hands inside my mate. "Good one, Jack. A couple more of those, and Sebal'c will be screaming up a storm. Push again for me, sweetheart. And let go of that yell you've been holding onto."
So O'Neill gathers his strength for another push. This time he screams out loud, and the sound echoes through the still air, drowning out even the waterfall. His whole body convulses, and the mound that is his stomach begins to deflate.
"Yeah!" Janet's shout of triumph is good to hear. "It's a boy."
But even better is the sight of our son, covered in blood and birthing fluid. She holds him up, laying him on O'Neill's stomach. My mate gathers him close, and begins to clean away the fluid from his face. His fingers look so big next to his tiny form. Janet is talking to Home about bringing her some instruments but I can concentrate on nothing but my mate and our child.
"Welcome to the world, Sebal'c." O'Neill's voice is hoarse. "We're awfully glad you're here."
Out of the corner of my eye, I see Terry arrive and hand Janet something metallic. Then I watch as the doctor cuts the umbilical cord, and ties it in a knot near Sebal'c's stomach. "There we go, angel. Jack, do you want to deliver the afterbirth here or on dry land?"
"Here's good, Janet." My mate looks up long enough to smile at her. "You did a great job, my friend."
"You did all the work, Jack. Two hours of hard labor isn't bad for a Jaffa birth." She smiles at us both.
"Thank you, Janet, for helping us through this ordeal." I go back to feasting my eyes on our son.
"Is that all it was - two hours? Oh," O'Neill grimaces, and shivers deeply in my arms. "Okay, that feels weird."
Something bloody exits his body, and Janet quickly asks Home to transport it to her lab. "Just the afterbirth, Jack. Your membrane is going to seal itself now, and slowly your body will tighten up all over. No love making for two weeks, gentlemen. Everything needs some time to heal."
O'Neill nods distractedly, his attention back on our son. "Sure, we'll be careful. Oh, Teal'c, look he has your eyes."
Our son is blinking, and his eyes are indeed the same brown as mine. "But his hair is yours, my One."
"He's beautiful, guys. You make great babies." Terry congratulates us.
My smile shall not cease for some time, I fear. "Thank you both for your support. Soon it will be our turn to support you."
Terry wrinkles her nose. "I'm hoping for only two hours of labor, too."
Janet chuckles and kisses her mate on the lips. They are well matched, and I am glad we could help them create a family for their own.
"Oh, he's going to sleep, Teal'c." O'Neill's whisper brings my attention back to him.
"I think we should probably leave the water now, guys. He needs to get measured, weighed, and dressed. He's tired, and so are you, Jack. After your nap, we'll introduce him to the rest of our colony." Janet's practicality is just what I need to begin moving.
Gathering O'Neill into my arms, I wade out of the warm waters that welcomed our son. "Home, please move us to our rooms."
//new light// she is humming happily, and does as I request
The temperature is higher than normal, and I am glad when O'Neill shivers in my arms. I grab the robe at the foot of the bed to dry him off before I lay him down gently, and cover him up. His eyes close almost as quickly as our son's did. I deftly take our son from his grasp, and hand him to Janet so she can do what she has to do. Taking off my wet shorts, I dry myself quickly and redress hastily.
"Here you go, Teal'c. Sit down by Jack." Janet hands me Sebal'c after I'm seated on the side of the bed. "He's fifteen inches long, and weighs 4 and a half pounds. That's long for a Jaffa baby and a good weight for his size. When he wakes up, he'll probably want to nurse. If Jack has any problems, let me know. But I think the three of you will do just fine."
She drops a kiss on my head and leaves. I marvel at the small being cradled in my hands. His skin is a beautiful shade of gold like O'Neill's. He's like a miniature doll but I can feel his heart beating. He is dressed in one of the small outfits Terry sewed out of flannel, and the warmth of the material must feel good to him since he is stretching and wiggling. I feel my mate awaken.
"He's so small." O'Neill blinks and pushes himself up higher on the pillows. Holding out his arms, he accepts our son with a look of awe. "He felt one hell of a lot bigger coming out."
"Your body had never experienced birth before." I crawl under the blanket with him, and cradle them both in my arms. "Perhaps one child is enough for us to raise."
His chuckle wakes up our son, and big brown eyes gaze up in wonder at us. His little arms wave and his lips purse twice while we watch. O'Neill takes a deep breath, and switches his position so the baby's mouth is right over his nipple.
"Oh," my mate sighs when Sebal'c latches onto him. "That feels so good. He's a ferocious eater like his papa."
I have tears in my eyes again. Nothing is more beautiful than our son nursing at his mother's breast. "Jaffa appetites are well known throughout the galaxy. If he keeps this up, he'll grow big before the month is out."
He chuckles again, and leans his head against my chest. "I'm still holding out for six, Teal'c. Each one will be a little easier to birth. And except for the last month or so, I loved being pregnant. Thank god I fell in love with you, the only man who could give me my heart's desire."
"My One," I hold him close. "We are the luckiest men in the galaxy."
********* Gibbs *********
It's good to hear Jack's voice on the phone. "Gibbs, can we meet? I've got a lot to tell you."
"When and where?" I reach to turn off my computer.
"We're already at your place. I see you still don't believe in locking your doors." He sounds distracted. "There are three of us. Anyone from your team coming?"
I look up and see a quizzical look from across the bull pen. "My second in command, DiNozzo."
"Oh yeah, the sexy one," Jack's voice teases me.
"None of that, boyo," I use my Marine voice, and he just laughs.
"An hour, Jethro, I've got a surprise for you." Then he hangs up.
I snort, he always has to have the last word. "DiNozzo, you're with me. McGee, find me a way into the perp's bank account or his email server. He had to talk about the crime or pay for it."
Hesitating, I pull my gun and holster it. Better safe than sorry. Tony does the same across from me, and he's at my side when I stride towards the elevator. The sexy one, yeah, Tony is definitely that. Now if I only had the courage to do something about it. I've dithered for two years now, and nothing gives me the shove I need, not even almost losing him to the plague.
"This the friend who maybe has some answers?" His voice is neutral, and that bothers me.
"Hopefully. He said he has a surprise." I wait until we're in my car. "He works or worked for a secret government agency. We've known each other for a long time and five years back . . ." I pull out of my parking slot and head towards home. "Well, let's just say I saw some pretty weird things that I can't explain. If ever there was someone who could explain the arrival of 316 sailors to a beach in Miami, it's him."
I smile nostalgically, thinking about the weirdness. "He's a close friend."
Tony wrinkles his nose, and looks sideways at me. "How close is . . . close?"
"We tell each other the truth or we don't talk at all." I do a little looking of my own.
"I see." He nods slowly but that little wrinkle between his eyes stays there.
What I wouldn't give to smooth it out, and trace the slightly pursed lips with my tongue. Putting my attention back on my driving, I race home. The sooner we get there, the sooner I can get some answers. And the sooner I can make a decent pot of coffee. The shit at work is truly awful. There are days when even I can't drink it.
There's no car in front of my house. But when I turn off the motor, Jack's figure appears at my front door. He looks good - really good, and I wonder at his tan and youthful look. All the lines of worry are gone, and he practically glows. He gathers me into a hug the minute he's close enough, and his strength surprises me.
"Long time, no see, Jethro. And this must be Tony," Jack holds out his hand, and shakes DiNozzo's. "Good to finally meet you. I put the coffee on, and it should be ready about now." He turns around, heading inside, and raises his voice. "Teal'c, they're here."
A tall, husky black man with a gold tattooed forehead stands in the kitchen doorway, holding a baby in his arms. I blink, I thought he'd have that scientist, Jackson, or maybe a member of his team with him. Jack joins him, and takes the baby expertly into his arms. "Gibbs and DiNozzo, meet my mate, Teal'c."
Teal'c bows to us and I manage a nod while Tony returns the bow. My subordinate is finally smiling. "From Chulak, I presume? It's a pleasure to meet you both. What the hell happened to the Stargate?"
Stargate? My gaze goes back and forth between them. "What is going on, Jack?"
My old friend's eyes are crinkling up. "Tony, you've got family or friends in the program?"
"Team 14, my cousin Tom Bartolini is a member." Tony nods. "The coffee smells ready. Why don't we sit down and have some? I'm betting the explanation is going to be a long one."
"Yep, it certainly is. Come on, Jethro, we'll explain all the cryptic stuff for you." Jack winks at me.
Sitting around my kitchen table, I listen spellbound to the tallest tale I've ever heard. But to top off the saga, Jack actually unbuttons his shirt and nurses the baby. The baby he carried for six months for his mate. Who also unbuttons to show me his pouch holding a baby snake. I need liquor and I need it now. Tony seems to understand, and gets up to get the bottle of bourbon from the cupboard by the sink.
How did he know where I keep it? I'll ask him later. Right now, I'm trying to come to terms with all Jack has told us. The first sip goes down smooth, and I begin to relax a little. "Okay, I've got a few questions. Our planet is now sentient? She took action against some kind of alien invasion? And the suicides we've been investigating are most likely alien clones or something?"
Jack is burping the baby so Teal'c answers. "This is mostly correct, Gibbs. We think there were some actual aliens involved but also mind control of humans."
"Otherwise, Ducky would have noticed an alien on his autopsy table." Tony nods his head, and sips his coffee. "So Cheyenne mountain is gone and the Stargate is unworkable. How are the teams who were out-planet going to get home?"
Jack grimaces. "We're working on that. Some of them want to stay where they are if their families can join them. Most of the civilizations they've been studying have offered them sanctuary. Some want to come home to Earth. We'd like to offer some of them a place on our planet."
"My cousin will want to come home - to Earth. His big Italian family will be devastated if he doesn't," Tony says quietly, and I wonder why that wistful look crosses his face. "I'd love to see Home. She sounds like a sweet lady."
I freeze with my coffee cup halfway to my mouth. He wants to leave me?
Jack grins at me. "We'll arrange a trip for the two of you. I'll even show you the beach where Teal'c and I fell in love. Maybe you can finally do something about the love you're both hiding from each other."
"Both?" Tony's voice is a squeak but the hopeful look in his eyes when they turn to me makes my heart start beating again. "Boss?"
I gulp hard and take a chance. "Yeah, Tony, I've been love with you for the last two years."
"Me, too," his yearning look has me setting down my coffee cup so I can reach for him instead.
As first kisses go, it's a doozy. His heat and light mix together with the sweetest taste I've ever known. His little moan or maybe it's mine rises between us, and I need more.
********* Jack *********
My nose for arousal never fails these days. Leaning into Teal'c's shoulder, I watch one of my oldest friends finally take a chance. Three failed marriages had only taught him caution. Now maybe he can learn joy. Sebal'c is dozing against my skin, my nipple still in his mouth.
He's a voracious eater, and takes all meals extremely seriously. But the month since his birth has seen him add three inches and one pound, so I am happy with his progress. Every day is a joy since he was born. From almost the very beginning, he slept the night through so I am a bit smug about how good he is. Of course, with our enhanced senses, Teal'c and I would hear him two rooms away if he did awake. We spend almost every moment of the day with him.
Soft lips at my temple bring my eyes up to my beautiful mate. His smile brightens this kitchen before he takes my lips in our own fervent kiss. Thank all the gods we can make love again. Janet checked at our two week checkup and my membrane had healed from the tearing. We'd gone right home to celebrate. I was going crazy without my big Jaffa coming inside of me. Oral sex is great but it just doesn't satisfy all my cravings for his strong body.
Damned if it didn't feel like the first time all over again. I was so tight we'd literally had to go through the whole stretching thing again. But that was fun too, and I promised him I'd become a virgin for him again after every baby. He thanked me sincerely before tickling me into coming.
Just thinking about making love was making me leak into my boxers. I hadn't worn this many layers in months. But Jethro and Tony have broken apart to breathe, and it's time to finish up this first talk. "Guys, we're happy for you. How about you take the rest of today to fuck like bunnies? We'll come back tomorrow to answer more questions."
Gibbs is actually blushing. I want to snicker so badly but I heroically hold it in. He manages a nod while Tony just beams at everybody. Oh yeah, bunnies it is.
"Good luck, guys. Don't do anything we wouldn't do." I wink at them and with a thought, Home brings us to our favorite cove. "Thanks, Home. Could you see if maybe Mother Earth would talk with them? She's busy, I know, but it would go a long way to reconciling Gibbs to such a big paradigm shift."
//I'll see// her thoughts are always so warm and welcoming.
Settling Sebal'c into the soft nest we created for him with some cushions lining a big wooden bowl, I make sure he's fast asleep before casting a wicked look at my Jaffa. "First one in has to fuck me."
His chuckle is silent so as not to wake our son but then he's swiftly discarding the clothes hiding his body. I slow my own disrobing, lost in each new revelation of his golden flesh. My hands itch to touch and caress it. My tongue misses his taste.
"My One," his voice flows over me like the sweetest honey. "Do you require aid in removing your clothes?"
Kicking off my shoes, I shove my pants out of the way. "Nope, big guy, but I do need a little help with this terrible itch I've got. It's deep inside of me and only you can soothe it."
His eyes light up and his hands pull me close. "I shall investigate this itch at once, my One. Perhaps we should enter the water to see if that will help?"
I manage a nod before he sweeps me into his arms and carries me down to the water's edge. The waters feel like home to us, welcoming us back to where we belong. After we dunk ourselves so we're wet all over, I flutter kisses all over his beautiful face. His fingers are opening me for him, and I catch my breath when they ghost over my membrane.
"Tony DiNozzo wishes to have Jethro Gibbs' child. His scent changed when he realized you carried our Sebal'c inside of you." Teal'c finally has me stretched enough and I go down on all fours to welcome him in.
The burn feels so good, I moan softly while he slides in. When he pauses, I relax a little more. "I wondered what that scent meant. Is there a way for a symbiont to bite him so he can start the change?"
He begins rocking in and out while holding my hips still. "I do not know, my One. Becoming mates is what triggered Junior's bite for us. I would not know how to question him to see if he would do so for a stranger."
I grin and push back as much as he'll let me. I am heating up nicely. "Maybe we should ask Earth if she'd go for a modification in the human male? That way, every guy in a loving relationship could have their own child."
"It is an interesting thought, O'Neill." His chuckle makes me smile even harder. "Home, is this something possible for you?"
//study bright lights more// she sounds excited at learning something new
"Let us know, Home." I can feel myself begin to leak into the warm waters of the cove. "Harder, Teal'c, make me really feel you for an hour or so until I can entice you back into bed."
"My One." He slams in hard and I writhe beneath him.
And just like that, I release into the surf while he floods me with warmth. His seed races through my bowels, and I smile at the thought that when Sebal'c is two, we'll be creating a little brother for him just like this.
I can hardly wait.
The end of part ten