"I spy with my little eye, something beginning with... T."
There was silence at the other end of the radio for a moment, until it crackled and Teal'c's voice came over it to say, "Tent", with confidence.
"Got it in one." Jack sighed. "Again."
"You have chosen that word before, O'Neill."
"We're in tents and outside is a thunderstorm. There's not a lot here to see." After Daniel had kept them guessing far longer than was interesting, he'd made a ruling against coming up with crazy ways to describe things. What was the point of playing I Spy if something beginning with D was 'drab olive nylon'? Especially because he hadn't thought of it first.
"Let's play something else," Carter said, to forestall the argument. And, given the look she gave him, probably also because she was sharing a tent with Jack and didn't want him to be grouchy at her all evening.
"This is just like old times," Jack said with sarcasm, stoking the fire to convince it to stay lit in the steady rain that had started as they were putting the tents up. Daniel and Carter had tag-teamed him in convincing him to stay the night, despite the oncoming storm. Teal'c had remained neutral, but looked as if he was amused by the whole thing.
"Look on the bright side," Daniel said, "at least we're not being shot at."
Jack glared at him. Didn't Daniel know that was a statement guaranteed to make the previously friendly locals decide to start shooting? Just as soon as they developed guns, that is.
Daniel still seemed determined to look on the non-existent bright side. "It hasn't rained every time we've camped."
"It has rained on over half of the occasions in which we have spent a night in a tent," Teal'c put in.
Jack scowled at him. "Has the water boiled yet?"
"I'm starving," Daniel said. "It must be hot enough by now."
"Those clouds are getting darker." Carter was looking up at the sky, hand shading her eyes from the rain. "We might not have time for it to boil unless you'd like to eat out in a thunderstorm."
"I don't," Jack said firmly. "Let's eat now."
Jack lay in his sleeping bag, half-dressed while his jacket and pants dried, Carter having hung them up, since she was sensible and he was wet. The smell of damp pervaded the tent, but that was the least of their problems. The rain drumming on the roof of the tent, sounded almost like bullets. If he ever got to sleep Jack would probably dream of gunfire.
At least the wind had down enough that the tent wasn't in danger of being blown away. Occasional flashes of lightning illuminated the flashlight-lit space, although there wasn't anything to see, since Carter was also lying in her sleeping bag. Sometimes, between the thunder, when the rain let up a little, he could hear Teal'c and Daniel's conversation, but never clearly enough to hear the words.
"Have you decided what you're going to do about SG-1?" Carter asked, into the silence between them.
Jack turned his head to look over at her. "What about it?"
She was gazing at him intensely. "I mean, if you're going to add another person and who's going to be in charge."
"Oh, I've thought about that." He smiled at her, rather than answer.
"And what did you decide?" Carter asked, then added "sir" a little belatedly.
He turned on his side, propping himself up on his elbow so he could see her properly, and she did the same. It was almost like bedroom talk between a married couple, except they weren't a couple and were in separate beds, even if there wasn't much space between them, the tent not being very big. "There is one person who is perfect for the job." If Dr. Weir could tease him about being given command of the SGC, he could tease Carter too.
She frowned. "Who?"
He shook his head. "You're clever, Carter, you tell me."
She considered the possibilities. "Well, it can't be Simmons because his wife just had a baby and he requested to spend less time off-world. It can't be Masuda because she doesn't have enough experience..."
Jack lay back and tuned her out. Carter carried on, being used to him giving the appearance of not listening. He hadn't considered any of the people she was naming - he hadn't needed to and he was surprised Carter hadn't come to the same conclusion he had. Not thinking of herself for the position would have given him second thoughts if he hadn't had the same reaction to being offered command of the SGC himself.
After a while he grew tired of listening to her recite names and broke in. "I'm not bringing anyone new onto the team." She blinked and he spelled it out for her. "It's you, Carter."
"Me?" She looked surprised.
He sighed and closed his eyes briefly. "Yeah. Why not?"
She was quiet for a moment. Just as he was wondering if she was going to answer the question at all, she said, "I guess I just assumed you'd want to bring someone else in."
He shook his head. "Why mix up a good thing? And if there's only three of you I can justify coming along from time to time."
Despite the wave of his hand and the fact she should know him better by now she still looked worried. "You're not coming on all of SG-1's missions, are you?"
"Worried I'll be checking up on you?" he asked lightly.
She shook her head. For someone who didn't appear to have any confidence in her leadership abilities earlier, she did seem to now. "The SGC needs its commander there, not off on some distant planet. Not all the time anyway."
"Don't worry. I don't plan to accompany you on every mission. Just from time to time. When I get bored."
She looked even more worried and he chuckled. He knew he couldn't push it, of course, and it would be once in a blue moon that he could get away with going off-world, but it was fun to tease her. "Get some sleep," he said, settling himself down further into his sleeping bag.
In the morning their camp site had turned into a mud bath, although at least the sun was starting to harden it.
"I've been thinking," Daniel began, as they dismantled the tents. "I don't think you can assume all Egyptian Pharaohs were Goa'uld."
"Daniel." Jack winced as he straightened up and threw the tent pegs to one side. "It was just Twenty Questions. Don't be such a sore loser."
"I'm not." Despite being a veteran of camping, Daniel picked up a pole and managed to nearly collapse the tent on himself. Once Jack had rescued him he was unperturbed and carried on. "I'm just saying. Teal'c and I were discussing it last night."
Jack shook his head and started pulling out poles, passing them to Daniel to fold. "You two have such fascinating conversations."
Daniel shrugged. "So what did you and Sam talk about?"
He wasn't ready to disclose that. He wanted to announce it, make a big thing of it, as well as promote Carter, and he was keeping that last bit a surprise. So he shrugged. "Stuff."
"Right," Daniel said, disbelievingly.
"And we played twister." He grinned, knowing Daniel wouldn't believe that either, but when the wind had gotten up last night, holding the tent down had reminded him of twister. They'd even called out to each other when something needed holding.
Daniel shook his head. "Never mind."
"I think we need a new tent." Carter held up a pole from the tent she and Teal'c were dismantling. It was bent in a place where it shouldn't bend.
"You order one, I'll authorise it." Jack and Carter shared a smile that caused Daniel to raise his eyebrows.
"I believe you know something we do not." Teal'c paused in stuffing the tent into a pack to look up at them.
Jack smiled. "You'll find out."
"Something to do with your promotion," Daniel guessed.
He grin broadened. "I couldn't possibly say."
Daniel looked thoughtfully at him. "I'll get it out of you before we get home."
Jack said nothing, but even Daniel's needling guesses, getting ever closer to the truth, didn't make him want to get back to Earth any faster. The four of them going through the gate and staying over on an unfamiliar planet was just how he liked it. Even though his boots still sloshed when he walked, after he'd tipped the water out.