Daniel thought it was like watching a master artisan at work. The native man next to him held the long stem brush at its highest point as he liberally applied the black liquid to Jack’s fingernails. The colour bled from the brush onto Jack’s soft pink nails. Daniel had never really taken the time to study Jack’s hands before, but his gaze now fell on Jack’s long fingers and well kept nails.
The man couldn’t possibly manicure…could he?
Jack on the other hand was not nearly so interested in whatever alien muck was being painted on his nails in this little ‘let’s all bless the leader of the newcomers’ ceremony. No, he was too busy keeping his eye on all the other natives who had, like Daniel, gathered around to watch him have his day at the beauty parlour. Particularly the ones who were staring at the wrong hand…the one that held his gun.
If they thought they could lead him into a false sense of security by appealing to his vanity? ego? they had another thing coming. Plus Jack didn’t really think black was his colour.
The native man bent forward to gently blow on the painted nails in order to help dry them, and Jack shot Daniel yet another ‘get me out of here!’ look. His drawn brow and wide eyes meant Daniel was going to get it for talking him into going along with this.
The man then gestured for his other hand, and Jack gently passed his P-90 from hand to hand, careful not to let his freshly painted nails scrape on the metal and get ruined. Jack rolled his eyes at what he’d just done before they came to rest on the sight of his hand resting against his weapon. What a sight. You’d never see Sam handling her gun with such pampered nails. He was not going to hear the end of this for some time. He caught Daniel looking also and gave him a quick scowl. It did not remove Daniel’s amused grin.
The work was slow and even. Dip, wipe, brush. The bristles flew along Jack’s nails and tickled his cuticles, but never once left any colour on his skin. With time, natives came and left, and the crowd got smaller and smaller. When the man was finished, there was only Daniel and a few children milling around, too young to have seen the ceremony before.
Once again the man blew on Jack’s nails, and this time Jack blew out some air of his own. “We done here?” he sighed.
Daniel’s smile was sickly sweet; the little shit. “Yep! You’re now a blessed leader who will be forever welcome among the Agnai people.”
“Sweet” Jack replied sarcastically. He rose slowly from his seated position; arching his back and loosening cramped muscles. He and Daniel bowed towards the man as was the custom and the crowd gave a short cheer.
Jack made sure to use the pads of his fingers to hit the receiver on his radio, “Carter, Teal’c, we’re done with the festivities and all, heading for the gate now. ETA five minutes. Be ready to step through when we get there.”
“Yes Sir” came Sam’s short reply. Very short. Daniel couldn’t have possibly slipped away for a few moments to tell her what the ceremony entailed could he? Damn.
Jack and Daniel said their goodbyes to the natives with the promise to meet again soon for trade and headed for the gate. Daniel was blissfully silent for the most part; he also seemed to be trying to sneak glimpses of Jack’s hands. Jack left him to it, they weren’t being followed, and there were no signs of any lions, tigers or bears.
Jack did however hold out an arm to pull him up short, just before they came within visual range of the gate. Daniel looked down questioningly at the arm across his chest, but Jack said nothing. He unloaded his pack before unzipping it and digging through its contents for a moment. “Aww, crap” he whispered to himself.
“What?” Daniel piped up, obviously curious.
“I forgot to pack my gloves.”
“Oh” Daniel laughed, finding the whole thing funny again. “Don’t worry about it Jack, they look fine.” He finished with a grin, still staring at Jack’s hands.
Jack sighed again and pulled his pack up onto his shoulders.
Of course as soon as they met up with Sam and Teal’c neither tried to hide their immediate attention to Jack’s fingers. Teal’c’s eyes darted away moment later, Sam offered Jack a quick ‘cute’ and marched off to the DHD.
And what do you know; General Hammond was in the gate room to greet them as they stepped through. Jack, having no time to hide his hands without looking suspicious in manner decided to just grin and bare it. He waved hello to the General as he stepped off the ramp. “We’re back from planet make over,” he announced, wiggling his painted nails under Hammond’s nose. “I did ask for fire engine red, but this was all they had.”
Hammond’s flicker of surprise disappeared lickety-split. “I assume you were able to complete the ceremony then Colonel? And that we’re now able to open negotiations for trade?”
“Yes Sir. Even got my eye on some lipstick for Fraiser’s birthday…I mean; she will be the one wearing it of course…Sir.” Jack mentally kicked himself. Hammond’s eyebrows rose a little before he just shook his head and walked away. “Briefing at 1800” he threw over his shoulder.
At 1755 the rest of SG-1 walked into the briefing room to find Jack picking furiously at his nails. “Damn stuff won’t even chip off. It’s supposed to chip off right?” Daniel gave Sam a sympathetic shrug and took his seat, she was supposedly the most qualified to answer the question after all. “Ah, usually depends on the quality Sir. That, and we don’t even know what it’s made of, although, Janet doesn’t seem too worried at this point.”
Jack hadn’t really thought of that. Fraiser, after complimenting him on his fantastic nails ‘the colour is so you Sir’ had said she would take a sample for analysis if needed.
“You could try nail polish remover”
Jack’s ears perked up at that. “There’s a remover?”
Sam went to reply, but rose instead as Hammond walked in.
After the briefing, Jack headed straight for the locker room where he promptly pulled on a pair of gloves, which he had left in his locker. “Boy scout, my ass” he muttered to himself.
When Daniel walked in moments later, his eyes went immediately to Jack’s now covered hands. Jack rolled his eyes, what was the big fascination? Daniel had been sneaking glances at his fingers since the ceremony. It’s not like there was anything written on them, it was solid black. No tribal designs, nothing. And it would all be gone as soon as he got his hands on some remover.
Jack threw his jacket on and stuffed his beanie over his head before slamming his locker closed. “Later Daniel” he said his goodbyes.
There was no one else in the drug store but for the spaced out kid behind the counter. Long black hair, piercings, oh; and black nails, just like Jack’s. Jack scoured the aisles before finally picking up a bottle of nail polish remover from the nail care section – who knew there was a nail care section? He took his purchase to the counter. The goth kid managed to flip his hair out of his eyes long enough to see what he was ringing up and gave Jack a quizzical look. Jack felt a little uncomfortable and slightly embarrassed so he threw in a packet of condoms and a few candy bars and coughed.
“You know most of the other trudes from the club use the other brand,” the kid said as he bagged Jack’s goods.
“Club?” Jack asked, not even wanting to know what a trude was.
The kid ignored his question, “The other brand is better at getting off that sparkly glitter crap they put in the polish”, he gestured to Jack’s still gloved hands.
Jack tried his best to look confused, and it helped that he genuinely was. “Ah, the polish remover is for my girlfriend” he lied, “and she doesn’t have any glittery stuff… that I’m aware of.
“Whatever dude”, it seemed the kid had already lost interest as soon as Jack had handed over his money.
Jack shook his head and left the store.
Half an hour and a headache later there was a knock at his door. Jack answered to find Daniel holding a pizza. His stomach rumbled at the sight, reminding him that he hadn’t even eaten yet. “You’re an angel!” Jack exclaimed as he pulled Daniel and the pizza inside, he could have been referring to either…
Daniel spotted the nail polish remover next to the drug store bag on the dining room table and went over to pick it up. Obviously Jack hadn’t gotten around to using it yet as his nails were still black, and Daniel couldn’t help but stare.
“I was actually just trying to figure out how to use that stuff, the fumes were making me a bit woozy” Jack said as he opened the pizza box.
“What, you never saw Sara…?”
“Nah, she wasn’t exactly a glam it up kinda gal, she threw on a bit of make up if we went somewhere nice, otherwise she was au naturale.” Jack smiled at the memory.
Something inside Daniel’s chest tightened for a moment, then it was gone.
“Well I think you just dab some of it on a tissue or cotton ball and rub it on the polish”
“Like buffing a car? Wax on, wax off? I’m not a Ferrari, Daniel.”
“I was thinking more a Pontiac” Daniel smirked to himself.
Jack shoved pizza in his mouth and gave Daniel a dirty look. “So why’d you come over anyway?”
Honestly? Daniel didn’t really know himself. He just wanted to see Jack and those black nails again for some reason. Was he turning into a fetishist? Why did Jack suddenly become more appealing now that he had those slick black nails? Not that Jack hadn’t been appealing before, the man was a looker in Daniel’s book, but there was a difference in noticing another man’s looks for what they were and wanting something else – a closeness of physical proximity if you will, and more…
“Err, game!…There’s a game on isn’t there?”
Jack laughed, “There’s always a game on! Just let me get this gunk off my hands first”. Jack finished with the pizza and cleaned himself up before reaching for the remover bottle. Daniel sat idle and watched Jack’s hands roll the bottle around as he read the instructions. He caught Jack catching him staring again and looked away. Picking at the drug store bag, Daniel actually looked at its contents this time. His eyebrows rose. “Plans tonight?”
Jack looked at the bag. “Nah…the kid in the store was asking questions, I guess he figured something was up when I was wearing gloves in the middle of spring.”
“And condoms were the way to throw him off the scent?”
Jack looked quizzically at the condoms for a second, then shrugged. This made Daniel laugh. Jack joined in too as he reached for some tissues. He was just about to dab some of the remover onto it.
“Wait!” Daniel chocked out, his voice suddenly uneven and croaky.
Jack looked up at him again to find him staring at the fingernails. “What’s up with you? It’s like you’ve been fixated on this stuff since we got back. It’s just nail polish.”
Daniel’s eyes met Jack’s. “I know that, they just…it looks good…on you.” He swallowed. Jack studied him for a moment. Daniel was holding back, Jack could see it written all over his face. Daniel was sometimes too much of an open book, and it often got him into trouble…but it also got him out of it too.
Jack placed a hand on Daniel’s arm “Hey, you can tell me, whatever it is”. Daniel exhaled sharply. He looked lost, unsure of what to do next.
Eventually, Daniel lifted his other arm and placed his other hand over Jack’s. He squeezed a little – which Jack could have taken as a thankyou. Daniel slowly raised his hand again, hovering over Jack’s and bit the bullet, trailing his own fingertips over Jack’s hand and along his fingers, coming to rest over the painted nails. He bit his lip and once again raised his eyes to meet Jack’s. Jack hadn’t moved a muscle.
“Is it the polish?”
“How do you know? It could be some alien thing.”
“I woke up this morning feeling like this…and quite a few mornings before this one too.”
Daniel looked like he was about to bolt at any second. Jack would have to play this carefully. He couldn’t say he hadn’t thought about what Daniel was bringing to the table here. He had. But the fact was that due to their positions, and who they were, the ball had always been in Daniel’s park. At least, that’s what he told himself.
Daniel ducked his head, “Look, I should…”
“I feel it too,” Jack admitted. “Sans the nail stuff of course, but it’s there.
“’Fraid so” Jack replied, keeping his eyes focused on their hands. Similar size, his were a little more tanned, slightly longer fingers. Daniel’s had a light dusting of freckles, souvenirs from many a day spent digging for the past in the desert sun.
They stayed like that for a while, hands resting atop one another, stealing glances at each other’s faces, looking away shyly when they caught the other’s eyes. This was so ridiculous; they were acting like twelve year olds. It was any wonder neither of them were blushing.
Then Daniel started to move a finger, ever so slightly, letting the pad rub over one of Jack’s panted nails, tracing the contour, following the edges along the cuticle. He looked up at Jack and Jack nodded for him to continue. Daniel explored Jack’s hands further while Jack sat patiently and let him. He felt the warm skin on the back of his hand, the sparse hairs near his wrist before working his way down once again to Jack’s fingers, running the tips of his over the knuckles.
By the time he had finished and met Jack’s gaze, his pupils were dilated and his breathing shallow. Daniel licked his lips. Jack was both shit scared and hard as hell. He gripped Daniel’s hand, stilling his movements and leaned forward. Daniel understood his intention and shifted also, keeping his hands to himself when Jack finally freed them. They were batshit crazy, both of them for going along with this, for letting this happen. Neither cared.
Jack’s arms reached out, one on Daniel’s shoulder, the other on the back of his neck, bringing him forward, closer. Their lips brushed once, twice. “I want…” Jack whispered before claiming Daniel’s lips. He had no idea kissing Daniel would be like this. He’d always imagined, but it paled in comparison to the real thing. He got in a few moments of leisurely ‘getting to know you’ kissing, before Daniel progressed onto ‘need you, have to have you, going to take you now’ kisses. Jack let himself be taken there.
Daniel’s hands found their way to Jack’s shoulders, then down and along the front of his shirt, fiddling with the buttons there before finally undoing them. His mouth soon followed suit, tracing a pattern down Jack’s neck and chest, skin bared when necessary. Once Jack’s shirt was off, he made his way down Jack’s arm, nipping lightly at his inner elbow, kissing his wrist, causing Jack to shiver slightly. He held Jack’s hand in his own, inches away from his mouth, soft puffs of air drifting over Jack’s skin. “They’re exquisite” Daniel’s lips spoke against the tips of Jack’s fingers as if he were talking about some ancient find.
He slowly took a digit into his mouth; swirling his tongue over the soft callouses and slick polish feeling their contrast. Then another finger, rubbing the fingertips with his tongue, lightly scraping the knuckles with his teeth. Jack was drinking in the sight of Daniel swallowing his fingers, in and out, sucking lightly on the skin.
He needed more of Daniel, now. Jack reached down, trailing his other hand down Daniel's stomach and to his pants, flicking the button open and unzipping him to uncover the heat inside.
Daniel moaned around his fingers when Jack brushed against his dick, sending the vibration right down to his own. The wetness, the heat from Daniel's mouth was burning him, and Jack was falling happily into the flames.
Daniel could tell Jack was about to go to his knees seconds before he went to. Not wanting him to have to kneel on the hard tiled floor, Daniel instead began to rise, releasing Jack's fingers and standing before him with his crotch level with Jack's face. If Jack looked up at him, Daniel was sure he'd come in his pants. But Jack was fixated on the sight in front of him. The distended fabric of Daniel's boxers, peeking just outside of his open fly. Jack had the urge to mouth the cloth, moisten it with his tongue, as if he could somehow suck the flavour through from behind it.
Instead he slowly pulled Daniel's pants down as far as they would go, before removing his boxers, careful of the erection bobbing towards him. Daniel's eyes glazed over as puffs of Jack's breath hit his bare flesh. Jack gently took a hold of Daniel's penis, a firm warm grip and Daniel looked down to see Jack's perfectly painted fingernails wrapped around him.
So concentrated was he on Jack's polished nails, that he was taken completely by surprise when Jack gave him a few tentative licks. Jack then enveloped him, suckling lightly on the head and getting a feel for the weight of it on his tongue. He tried to take in more and breathed deep in order to relax and just let go. He had known he'd wanted Daniel, he just didn't know that he needed him, until now.
Daniel was enthralled with the sight of Jack going down on him, lips stretched around his cock, moving back and forth, reaching closer and closer toward the fingers at the base. The shiny black nail polish on Jack's fingernails, such a contrast between the slick polish and the warm fingers. He watched Jack's eyes close as he concentrated on his task, eyelashes fluttering against his cheeks as he brought Daniel near completion. Daniel couldn't hold back, this was something Jack was willing to give, and he was willing to take. He exploded in Jack's mouth, his hands sitting in Jack's hair, not forcing, but guiding him on his cock. Jack swallowed what he could. He let the salty taste of Daniel wash around his mouth, and trail down his lips and chin.
Daniel's knees were getting weak so he pulled out of Jack's mouth and re-took his seat. Jack closed his eyes and leaned forward, head in his hands. He was silent but for his ragged breath, willing his body to calm.
"You ok?" Daniel asked.
"Yeah" Jack breathed out, "Just, wow..."
Daniel could tell he was grinning from the sound of his voice. He leaned forward also, sliding an arm under Jack's head and let it rest on his shoulder, wrapping his other arm around Jack's back. "I came in my pants!" Jack exclaimed into his shoulder.
The remover bottle sat unopened until the next morning.