Warnings: Rated M™© for sexual innuendo.
Categories: Ship, Het, Fluff, Vignette, Humor
Characters: Daniel Jackson (primary), Vala Mal Doran
Spoilers: Set in season ten, but no real spoilers.
Credits: Beta Anne Rose. References include A Short Course in Akkadian Cuneiform by John Heise and a bit of Gaelic I found scribbled on an index card on my desk.
Disclaimer: MGM owns lots of cool stuff, but I only borrow the very best.
Daniel bent over the translation spread across his desk. He recognized 'bíonn fear feasach fuinnmhí' as a gaelic proverb, literally meaning 'a knowledgeable man does be powerful,' but considering the context, Daniel's own knowledge only deepened the mystery, because the rest of the inscription was written in Akkadian, which didn't even use the same alphabet, and the age of the tablet itself precluded --
"I knew I'd find you here." Vala sauntered into his office. Or rather, she failed to saunter in her usual manner, and that made Daniel give her a second glance. She shuffled over to him, and he looked down at her feet.
"Aren't they cute?" She leaned back against his desk and held up one foot, proudly displaying a fuzzy pink bunny slipper with googly eyes and long, floppy ears.
Daniel found this odd enough that it distracted him from the translation for almost thirty seconds, and then Vala gave a little flourish with her ankle, making the googly eyes rattle, and Daniel caught his eyes drifting up her bare leg to her nightshirt, now sliding dangerously up her thigh.
So that was the game.
"Vala -- "
She hopped up onto his desk to sit mere inches from the tablet, her bare legs swinging back and forth, the bunny ears swaying with the motion. "It's far too late to be working, darling. Come watch a movie with me."
He ignored the rhythmic swinging of her legs. "I really need to finish this translation. If the tablet originated on P4X -- "
"Yes, darling, I'm sure it will reveal the most important thing in the universe." Vala made a show out of her feigned boredom, and while Daniel had a fair bit of practice in ignoring that kind of thing, his eyes did wander to the swaying bunny ears.
She sensed his weakness, and nudged his shoulder with her knee. Her bare knee. And now one of the bunny slippers was flirting with the edge of his chair. If she dared --
Vala grinned at him, and the bunny slipper brushed the outside of his thigh. Terrific. Now he'd spend the next week fighting impure thoughts about bunny slippers.
"Vala!" He glared at her until the slipper retreated.
Only the vast amount of experience Daniel had in ignoring that sort of thing allowed him to return to his translation. The Celtic branch of the Indo-European language family had migrated west to the British Isles six hundred years after Akkadian had fallen from use. The two languages quite simply did not belong on the same --
Vala's thigh shifted, and Daniel closed his eyes as he fought the urge to touch her leg. He would not let her win at this little game, and he really wished she would channel her energy into something productive, rather than constantly teasing him. It was inappropriate, and . . . and the muscle in her thigh rippled beneath her skin as she stuck both feet out in front of herself and pretended to admire her bunny slippers.
"Where did you get those things?" Daniel hadn't meant to ask that. The origin of the tablet, not the origin of the bunny slippers, held the key to . . . he swallowed, and tried not to imagine sliding his hand up Vala's thigh, her skin shivering beneath his fingertips.
In yanking his eyes away from her leg, he got caught up in her smile.
"Sam gave them to me," Vala said.
He refused to ask why, and focused on the tablet.
Vala twisted enough to maneuver a bunny slipper up onto the edge of his chair. The little plastic bunny nose poked his thigh. Her knee brushed his arm.
Completely inappropriate images flickered though Daniel's imagination, and he failed in his rather desperate attempt to avoid imagining Vala wearing nothing except the bunny slippers. A sigh escaped, and he tried to blame the translation. "Akkadian was a dead language well before Gaelic arose, which makes this tablet impossible. Nobody would know both languages."
"You know both languages," Vala said.
"Yeah," Daniel said. "Good point. Perhaps the Akkadian served as a code, which might explain what appears to be the incorrect use of the construct state . . . "
The little plastic bunny nose wandered up his thigh, and Daniel redoubled his efforts to ignore it. It wasn't as if Vala would actually put her foot in his --
She slid her foot into his lap.
"Vala!" Daniel shoved his chair back from the desk.
A grin spread across her face and she slipped off the desk to stand between him and the tablet. Her nightshirt rode up a few more inches as the back of it got trapped between the edge of the desk and her -- yeah.
Daniel turned away from her and went to get a book. Not that he actually needed one. He selected one at random as Vala padded up behind him.
She reached around him, the heat of her body radiating against his back as she plucked the book from his hands. "Legends of Feudal Japan?"
It crossed his mind to lie about the book's relevance, but he knew that despite Vala's quite vocal disinterest for his work, she paid it more than enough attention to know that feudal Japan was just about the last place one might look to explain a connection between ancient Babylon and the British Isles, and besides, her tone of voice made it clear that she knew she'd gotten to him.
He skimmed the titles on his shelf, and ignored Vala's Cheshire cat grin, which he knew she was wearing even though he refused to look at her. He kept staring at the shelf as she moved around him and slipped the book on Japan back onto the shelf.
"Try this one." She held out a slender volume on cuneiform. "At least it's the right alphabet."
Despite his best efforts, he liked that she knew that, but she looked pleased enough with herself for the both of them, so he kept his face carefully neutral.
Vala sauntered over to the lab table, an effect that the floppy-eared bunny slippers really should have spoiled, but for some reason almost certainly unique to Vala, she pulled it off, moving with a casual grace that owned the room, despite the stuffed toys on her feet. Then she hopped up onto the table, sprawled across it in a way that made her particularly hard to ignore, propped herself up on her elbows, and began flipping through the magazine she'd left behind earlier.
The bunny slippers began a dance that had absolutely no business qualifying as alluring, but went right ahead and managed it against all logic, and Daniel found himself watching Vala read a magazine.
"Go ahead, darling, finish your work."
He tore his eyes away from her legs and stared instead at the book in his hands. Cuneiform. "I think I've got it." He returned to his desk without lifting his eyes from the book, and shuffled eagerly through the papers on his desk. "It's these noun constructs, if I just translate those into -- that's it. It's a gate address."
Vala swung gracefully off the table and grinned at him. "Now can we watch the movie?"
The eagerness in her voice made him smile back. If he slept on base instead of driving to his apartment, he'd make up the sleep. Not that he ever bothered to leave the base these days. The glint in Vala's eye raised his suspicions a bit. "What movie?"
Vala, of course, chose to interpret his question as agreement, and she took his arm to lead him out of his office. "Cameron loaned it to me," she said. "He said it's a classic."
He was doomed. "What movie?"
"It's called Who Framed Roger Rabbit."
This transformative work constitutes a fair use of any copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Stargate™©, Stargate SG-1™©, and related properties are Registered Trademarks of MGM Studios. No copyright infringement intended. No profits made here. © Spiletta42, October 2007.