|Compromising Positions | Into the Black | Contact|
Naming NamesNotes:It was just a topic that I felt needed to be addressed in some way – no matter how wrong it is, there is a greater than 80% that someone like Daniel (i.e. kinda pretty and definitely perceived as weak) would have been the target of some form of abuse on a military base. Big thanks to dirty_diana for the beta.
Jack is sitting in the commissary, pushing the last piece of his apple pie around his plate, when the white noise of multiple conversations suddenly clarifies and he hears the words: Jackson, infirmary, black eye. He’s up out of his seat and halfway down the hall before he’s even consciously aware of moving.
He barges into the infirmary and stalks through the medics, following the sound of Janet’s voice to one of the examination areas, and he pulls the curtain back. He stops dead in his tracks when he sees Daniel’s face. It’s one hell of a lot more than just a black eye, it looks like someone took a boot to his face.
“Colonel! You can’t just barge in…” Janet exclaims furiously.
“What the hell happened?” Jack roars at Daniel, who looks an awful lot like a deer caught in the headlights.
Daniel opens his mouth to speak, but Jack interrupts him.
“And don’t even think about telling me you bumped into a goddamn wall!”
Daniel closes his mouth.
Jack turns to Janet. “How many times?”
“What?” she asks, put off-balance by the sudden question.
“How many times has he been in here, with an injury that you didn’t tell me about?”
“Colonel, you know I’m not going to tell you that,” Janet replies, crossing her arms. “And I’d thank you to remove yourself from my infirmary if you’re going to continue yelling at me and my patient.”
“Jack,” Daniel says quietly, brushing his hair out of his eyes. “I’m fine.”
“Doctor, could I have a few minutes alone with your patient?” Jack says, talking over Daniel’s words.
“I’m not sure that I should,” Janet says, giving him a stern look. “Are you going to keep yelling?”
“I haven’t decided yet,” Jack says. “It depends on how stubborn certain people are planning on being.”
“Colonel,” Janet begins, putting her hands on her hips. Jack waves his hand at her and interrupts her. “Okay, okay, spare me the lecture. No more yelling. Satisfied?” Jack asks.
“Not really, but it will have to do,” she says, and then touches Daniel lightly on the shoulder. “Don’t leave. I want to give you some pain meds before you go, okay?”
Jack waits until Janet’s gone, and then he closes the curtains around them. He stands in front of Daniel and crosses his arms.
“Names, Daniel. I want names.”
“Jack, I’m fine,” Daniel says heatedly. “It was just a misunderstanding. I’m handling it.”
“You are not handling it, Daniel,” Jack says. “Let me guess. It started with a few dirty looks and then a few bumps in the hall, easily dismissed as clumsiness, but now it’s escalating, a punch in the ribs every now and again, and now this, right? Am I right?”
Daniel nods reluctantly, his arms curling around his waist.
“Just be glad we have our own locker room,” Jack pauses long enough to let his words sink in. He knows they have when Daniel goes pale. “Now, Daniel. Names.”
“No, Jack,” Daniel insists, frowning, and then wincing as it pulls at the bruise on his face. “How’s it going to look if you start defending me? Right now they only assume I’m gay, based on some ridiculous stereotype their barbarian brains have latched onto. You go out there and start cracking heads and they’re going to just assume you’re…” Daniel pauses, but then continues, making a moue of distaste at the crude word, “…fucking me, giving them all the so-called proof they need, no matter how absurd or wrong it is.”
“Daniel,” Jack says, and places his fingertips on Daniel’s knee for a moment to focus him. “I’d rather they think that, than think you’re fair game.”
Daniel gapes at him.
Jack rests his hand on Daniel’s shoulder and squeezes gently. “Names, Daniel.”
Daniel closes his eyes in defeat, and starts naming names.