Stir in Col Jack O'Neill
P4C-962 was a rocky, deserted little orb. It was smaller than Earth, but due to an interesting phenomenon of the planet's mass and composition it had an almost equal gravity. At least, Sam thought it was an interesting phenomenon. Jack thought it was just another rock, not very different from the billions of others hurtling around in the galaxy. It was a miserable place to be, he decided, a whole minute and a half from setting his foot on its lifeless soil.
It was however heaven for Daniel, and for that reason alone Jack would endure it for the fourteen days ahead. It had been a rough time for Daniel lately, what with the water alien guy sucking memories of obscure text out of his brain and Hathor… well, Jack didn't really want to think of what she had done to him. Not to mention that behind it all loomed the loss of Sha're. Jack knew the hope that rose in his friend's heart each time they stepped onto a new world. The hope that maybe here there would be a clue to find her. And no matter how well Daniel hid it, he knew the disappointment he felt when it wasn't so.
At least Daniel had adjusted surprisingly well to the military setting of the SGC. On second thought, 'adjusted' might not really be the best word. Accepted, perhaps, though it could not be said he had resigned to it. Jack had already stopped counting the times he'd found his friend on the front line of a conflict of military and scientific interests, and he was sad to say he had almost as often found himself on the other side of said conflict. Daniel never backed down – he wasn't the kind to – but Jack suspected it must be pretty exhausting to keep fighting all the time.
Yeah, Daniel had earned this little archaeological excursion. It would be a chance for him to unwind while burying himself for a few days in doing the things he loved the most. And Jack would watch his back so he really could relax. Daniel had told him that he didn't need to come, and even had the General agreeing, but he had turned a deaf ear on both of them. Watching over Daniel on this trip, and letting it take as long as it did, was his way of making up for what he'd had to do the last time they had found something he'd been this eager to explore.
It had broken Jack's heart to tear Daniel away from Ernest's 'meaning-of-life stuff', but as far as he was concerned all the secrets in the universe meant nothing if you weren't alive. This time there would be no castle on the verge of collapsing into the sea – mainly because there was no sea at all on this dust ball of a planet. There would be nothing to interrupt Daniel. He would make sure of it.