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A Bit of Lint

by Katrina and Christi


Daniel sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose, placing an artifact on his desk. Picking up his pen to jot down some notes, he glanced at the clock. Damn, was it lunchtime already? Just goes to show that time flies when you’re studying alien pottery. Quickly finishing his thoughts, he stood and stretched his neck. Maybe he’d stop by the infirmary to visit Jack while he was at it. Lunchtime was usually the smartest time to visit him as he was usually slightly less irritable after being fed.

"Jack." Daniel greeted after stepping through the doorway.


"How you feeling?"

"I'm okay. Bored."

Daniel cringed. Not a good sign. "Yeah."

"Hey, do you have a lint roller handy?"

"A lint roller?"

"Yes. Fly paper that rolls."

"Not on me, no."

"But on base?"

"Jack, what's going on?"



"It's everywhere."


"Driving me nuts." Daniel sighed and stepped backwards. "I'm not having this conversation anymore."

Jack adjusted himself, looking to the left and the right before leaning slightly in Daniel’s direction, "Underneath my hospital gown, I keep finding orange fuzz."

"So the meds Doctor Fraiser has you on, those are treating you well."

"Daniel!" Jack barked, "Get me a damn lint roller or get out."

"Well," Daniel half-scoffed, "It's good to know you're feeling better."

"Look, I'm serious.” Jack grumbled, “I'm stuck here, bored out of my mind, wasting hours of my life. And I keep finding random bits of orange fuzz."

"Orange fuzz?"

"Oh, yeah."

"Well, I'll see what I can find, okay?" If for no other reason than it would get him out of this room and away from this conversation.

"Thank you."


Sometimes Daniel didn’t know why he was so easily talked into participating in Jack’s antics. His life was weird enough without traipsing around a secret military facility, searching for a lint roller. Luckily, he knew exactly where to go to perform his first lint roller acquisition. Daniel smiled to himself as he exited the elevator. Orange fuzz, indeed.

"Hey, Daniel," Sam greeted, as he walked into her lab.

"Hey, Sam,” Daniel replied innocently. He couldn’t wait to have this conversation, “So, do you have a lint roller?"

Sam’s head popped up from her work, a frown on her face. “Um, I don't think so."

As expected. “All right, thanks."

"Out of curiosity, why?"

Shrugging innocuously, Daniel waved his hand, "Something Jack asked me to find for him."

Sam’s eyebrows furrowed, “A lint roller? That’s…different.”

"Something about finding orange fuzz and it making him crazy…er." Wait for it….

"Oh." She paused, wrinkling her nose before saying more. "Nope." Another pause. "No lint roller." Yet another pause, during which she tried to look wide-eyed and innocent. Of course, Sam really couldn’t pull that sort of look off. She was more the outwit, outsmart, and outgun type. "What about the laundry room in the private quarters? Have you been there yet?”

Daniel smirked, and headed for the doorway, “Right, that makes sense. I’ll head there next. Thanks.”


Daniel held the lint roller limply, just out of Jacks’ reach, amused at the way Jacks’ face had lit up when his eyes had landed on the desired object.

"Does it itch or something? I don't see any orange. You make it sound like it's everywhere."

"No.” Jack shook his head, holding his hand out, “It's just annoying."


"And I’ve been told that orange is not my color."

Daniel shifted his weight, not dignifying that with a response as he handed Jack the roller.

"And Daniel, remind me to write a memo about new hypothermia blankets."

"What? Hypothermia blankets?"

"Hey, this fuzz is ridiculous. I don't think the next guy to nearly freeze his ass off should have to deal with it."

"Jack. The hypothermia blankets aren't fuzzy. Or orange."


Daniel nodded slowly, enjoying the build up.

"Well then, what in the…"

"Colonel, really!" Janet interjected as her head appeared, poking around the privacy curtain. "Why does it matter? You were stripped down and re-clothed and covered."

"With something orange and fuzzy? Since when does an Al Kesh come complete with orange, fuzzy clothes?"

Janet scoffed and held up a sweater. An orange sweater. "It doesn't. I'm pretty sure Sam grabbed whatever she could think of when they got to you."

"Wait a minute. Carter put me in the orange sweater? THAT orange sweater?"

Daniel sighed. He should have known that this game would get old before Jack caught on. “It's not like the Tok'ra would keep them on hand, so I'd say it's a safe bet, Jack.”

"Carter wouldn't do that!"

"Yeah, because the Tok'ra are prone to dressing in fuzzy attire.” Weird, occasionally shiny attire, yes. Fuzzy? No.

"Besides, I look terrible in orange."

"So you mentioned." Daniel muttered.

"Oh, get out of here."

"I'll be back."

"I'm sure you will." Daniel turned to leave, but was almost immediately stopped. "Hey, Daniel?"

He didn’t bother to turn around all the way, simply responding with a slightly bored “Mmmhmm?"

"If I…gave you something, could you slip it in Carter’s locker for me?”

"Oh, no."

"Why not?”

"Well, for starters, I already found the lint roller. I'm not your errand boy! Second? We’re not in elementary school. If you want to thank Sam for saving your ass, yet again, just be a grown up and say it, would you? This whole sock subtext has got to be getting expensive. Not to mention ridiculous."

Jack blinked a couple times before looking down and picking at the hospital blanket.

Daniel raised his eyebrows at Jack’s sudden silence and headed for the door, “Yeah. That’s what I thought. Good night, Jack.”


Hours later, Daniel rounded the door to Doctor Janet Fraiser’s office, dinner in tow. "I bring Chinese food," Daniel proclaimed.

The doctor looked considerably more frazzled than usual. "Bless you, Daniel."

"I aim to please," he retorted, passing out chopsticks and divvying up the sweet and sour chicken. "How's life in the Infirmary?"

"The same as it always is when Jack O'Neill is in residence – strained."

"Understandable. He's like a two year old."

"Daniel!" Janet chided with a grin. "That's just insulting. He’s at least a nine-year-old-boy."

"Fair point," Daniel conceded with a smile. "What's his problem, anyway? None of us like being in here, but after awhile you become sort of…accustomed."

"You would know," Janet teased around a mouth full of egg roll.

Daniel’s smile widened, “Well, we could trade jobs if you'd like. You could see how the other side feels.”

“Oh no,” Janet shook her chopsticks teasingly, gesturing toward herself, “I prefer to be on this side of the needle, thank you very much.”

Daniel’s eyebrows rose, “Even with the strained company?”

“Well, save the colonel, it's actually nice to get to see some of the faces I don't normally run into otherwise.”

“Yeah, not too many lines to see how the infirmary's holding up if someone's not broken or fighting off death are there?”

A pained expression rippled through Janet’s eyes briefly before she shook her head and smiled, “How are you doing, Daniel?”

Daniel shrugged and bobbed his head as he finished chewing, “Apart from the lint roller mission from crazy-land, today has been quite productive. The artifacts we brought back are ama—“ Daniel stopped mid sentence, his head cocked to the side “Was that --“

"-- laughing?" Janet finished for him.

Sure enough, a loud, healthy chuckle that Daniel had only heard a handful of times was emanating from the next room, followed by another giggling voice hushing the first.

The two doctors shared a look before simultaneously creeping to the door of Janet's office, peering around the edge to see Jack grinning up at Sam, who was perched half on a chair next to his bed and half actually on it, trying to quiet his mirth with her own giggles.

"I didn't know he could do that," Janet said wonderingly.

"It's rare. Very rare," Daniel retorted as they watched their friends playing and laughing. It was so unusual, and so nice to see them both so damn happy that Daniel could only feel the knot of dread in his stomach. "This is going to be a huge mess, isn't it?"

"Oh, definitely."

He sighed. "Well, damn."

We’re playing a little with style in this one. ‘Cuz we can.

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