Staring out the window of the news van, Daniel Jackson contemplated his life. Several years ago, he had been laughed out of academia for his theories on Ancient Egypt and he had been looking at a life of teaching instead of discovery. That was, however, until a television show that documented archaeological finds by ordinary people offered him a job. It wasn’t his life’s dream but it was sometimes interesting, and it paid the rent.
Right now, he was on his way to interview a family who had discovered several Viking artefacts on their property in Minnesota. It was further proof that the Vikings had explored America but the commercial channels wouldn’t touch the story - too controversial, apparently. Which was why Daniel was covering the story.
The van pulled up near the cabin and the crew piled out. Daniel slowly followed them, taking in the view as he did so. It was a lovely place - rustic log cabin, plenty of trees, a nice lake with a dock extending out a small way. Daniel smiled; it was an unlikely place to find archaeological artefacts but he couldn’t help envying the owner a little.
Speaking of which…
Daniel turned towards the cabin as the owner, one Jack O’Neill, stepped out. The background check had listed the man’s former career in the Air Force and the fact that his wife had left him and their son eight years ago but they hadn’t noted how handsome he was. Short ash-blonde hair, warn brown eyes, a lean body… Daniel shook his head. He wasn’t there to size up the man as a date, he was there to interview him. That was it. The last thing Daniel needed was any complications to his life.
Jack had watched as the news crew pulled up. He wasn’t too pleased with the fact they were invading his home but he begrudgingly accepted it because it would make his son Charlie happy.
His thirteen-year-old boy had been out exploring when he had come across a sharp stone poking out of the ground. Because of its unusual shape, Charlie had carefully dug it out of the ground and found that it was a dagger. Excited, he had dug some more and found several more daggers, plus some other artefacts. When he had come back to the cabin, full of excitement at his find, Jack couldn’t refuse Charlie’s request to see if they were anything important. After a few inquiries, the producers from Backyard Treasures had called and set up an interview. Jack had been reluctant but Charlie wanted to be on television.
And now the reporter was here. In order to find out a little more about the show, Jack had watched several episodes online. Despite the fact they were on a not-often-watched channel, the show was well put-together and they interspersed the interviews with historical background. The reporters were very knowledgeable and Jack had to give them credit for making dull subject matter actually interesting.
He recognised the reporter. Jack had to admit that Daniel Jackson, though geeky in appearance with his shaggy brown hair and wire-rimmed glasses, had a certain appeal. Ever since Sarah, his wife, had left him, Jack had had occasion to explore his attraction to men but it was never anything serious. Something about the reporter drew him in, however, and Jack was in the unusual situation of not knowing how to proceed.
Still, there was no time to worry about that now. He had to go out and greet the crew, and get the interview done. By that time, he would know whether Jackson would be someone he wanted to get to know better.
Daniel headed over to O’Neill and held his hand out. “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Mr. O’Neill. I’m Daniel Jackson.”
“Please, call me Jack,” came the reply as the older man shook hands. As his son came bounding up beside him, Jack continued, “And this bundle of energy is Charlie.”
“Ah, the budding archaeologist,” Daniel said with a smile that hid the shock of pleasure he had received at Jack’s touch. He shook Charlie’s hand as well, treating the teenager as an adult. “Can you show me the artefacts you found?”
“Sure!” Charlie headed back to the house at a run
“Slowly!” Jack yelled after him.
The pace barely slowed as Charlie shouted back, “Yes, Dad!”
Jack turned his head towards Daniel and gave him a half-grin. “He’ll be there before he realises that you’re not with him.”
Daniel shared the amusement, liking the way Jack’s eyes radiated affection for his son. “I’d better go after him then. I’ll talk to you later?” The irrational part of him wanted to know more about Jack and so far, that part of him was winning.
“Definitely.” Jack watched Daniel walk towards the house and sighed. Yep, parts of him were most definitely interested. The hard part - no pun intended - was going to be getting time to talk to Daniel alone and see whether the feeling was mutual.
It wasn’t until a few hours later, when the interviews had been done, that Jack and Daniel finally had another chance to talk. The camera crew headed off with Charlie to get some extra footage, leaving the two men alone by the cabin.
“Charlie seems like a good kid,” Daniel commented sincerely, breaking the slightly awkward silence.
“He’s the best,” Jack agreed. “Sometimes too impulsive but what kid isn’t?”
Daniel chuckled. “True.” He could remember plenty of scrapes from his childhood years that came from poor planning. He paused, wondering whether to say anything about the absence of Charlie’s mother, and then decided to go ahead. “You’ve done a wonderful job in raising him.”
“I hope so.” Jack had his moments of doubt sometimes. He looked briefly away, then brought his gaze back to Daniel’s. “You got any kids?”
“No, I don’t,” Daniel replied. He saw the curiosity in Jack’s brown eyes and elaborated. “I’m gay, so…”
“Right.” Yes! Jack silently shouted for joy. “Seeing anyone at the moment?” he decided to be bold and ask. Jack knew if he didn’t, Daniel would go out of his life and he would never know if they were meant to be together or not.
“No. You?” Daniel queried, hoping that the reason Jack was asking was because he was interested in him. During the course of the day, Daniel’s internal arguments against getting involved with someone had disappeared, especially when he watched Jack interact with Charlie.
“Nope. You wanna go out with me sometime?” And stay in afterwards, Jack mentally added. Despite the geekish clothes, he could tell that Daniel had a nice body and Jack couldn’t wait to see it.
“I’d love to,” Daniel replied, his thoughts similar to Jack’s. “We’re staying in town tonight. Are there any good restaurants around?”
There weren’t too many to choose from; the downside to living in a small community. There was also only one hotel in town. “The best one is ‘Tracey’s’, just two streets down from the hotel. I’ll pick you up at say, seven?”
Daniel smiled; Jack certainly worked fast. “What about Charlie?”
“He wants to spend tonight at a friend’s place and brag about today,” Jack stated with a grin. “So I’ve got the whole house to myself.”
“Let’s see how dinner goes before making other plans,” Daniel flirted, though a part of him liked the idea of coming back to Jack’s place for the night. He looked over to see one of the crew returning; time to return to business. “I’ll meet you out the front of the hotel at seven.”
“Looking forward to it.” And if all went well, as he suspected it would, Jack would have to remember to get Charlie a thank-you gift for finding the artefacts and bringing Daniel into his life.
|Genres:||Alternate Universe, Pre-Slash|
|Summary:||When Daniel, an archaeological reporter, interviews Jack about the artefacts in his backyard, it is the start of something special.|
Written for the prompt 'talk/news show' on au_bingo.