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Apparently there is an APB out for a Y entry for Jonas Alphabet Soup, so here is my take. Those of you who find the title a tad...*ahem*...negative, I would urge you to read it before you decide.

Title: Y is for Yes Man
Season: Six
Spoilers: Meridian, Redemption, Frozen
Synopsis: Jonas is trying hard to please his new boss. It's not going too well.



Y is for Yes Men



Jonas had been surprised when Colonel O’Neill had come into Dr. Jackson’s office to seek him out. Since leaving Kelowna, it had seemed that the Colonel had been strenuously attempting to avoid him. It was easy to see that he associated Jonas with the loss of his friend, and while that loss was still fresh, Jonas had no trouble understanding that just the sight of him would be painful. The Colonel did not discuss such things, but both his anger and his pain had shone through during that last discussion he’d had with O’Neill on Kelowna, when O’Neill had tried to warn of the dangers of proceeding with the construction of the bomb. But here he was, in Dr. Jackson’s office, asking if Jonas had a moment to speak with him.

Jonas smiled, invitingly of course, and offered the Colonel a seat. The Colonel declined, and when his gaze fell upon the nearby desk, he had moved swiftly to gather up a pottery bowl, a coffee mug, and a pair of glasses that were there, placing them carefully on one of the higher shelves nearby.

“Some of these things need to be packed up for storage,” he said somewhat stiffly. “Let’s go to my office for this.”

So Jonas trailed him down to his office, where O’Neill had told him that both Teal’c and Major Carter had put in a good word for him, and suggested him for the open position on SG-1. Carter had said he was a genius with an unparalleled ability to digest and retain new material, and that he was already familiar with most of the contents of Daniel’s journals. He was offering him the spot on the team. That is, if he wanted it?

Jonas had assured him immediately that yes, yes he would be honored, and that he still regretted his actions on Kelowna in not standing up for Dr. Jackson’s reputation, and that he would be delighted to be in a position to make a difference.

“Okay, then,” Jack said, and that was all the dismissal Jonas got. After a rather protracted and pointed silence, Jonas had gotten the hint and left, returning to Dr. Jackson’s office with only two wrong turns on the way.

He had hoped that the invitation to join the team would be a turning point in his relationship with Colonel O’Neill, or at least somewhat of a fresh start. But while the Colonel had been polite, and surprisingly patient with most of Jonas’ questions, and careful to give thanks for Jonas’ help, he still seemed to be avoiding him when he could. During briefings it even seemed that the more positive and helpful Jonas was, the heavier the Colonel’s displeasure. Why should agreeing with the Colonel’s point of view and offering data to back it up disturb the man? Jonas pondered this for a while, but having seen no clear answer, he decided it was time for some outside input, and Major Carter seemed to be the best choice for a source. She was, after all, a native of the planet, and seemed to navigate the Colonel’s moods where Teal’c rose above them or let them crash around him, depending on how one looked at it.

When he found her in the commissary, she was addressing herself to an orange, some toast, and a mug of coffee. It was late for breakfast, but Jonas understood that eating together was as sociable here as it was back home, so he got himself a serving of fruit salad, a banana, and a coffee as a mid-afternoon snack. The Major was very excited about an unusual discovery that she had learned of just that morning from a researcher down in Antarctica which she would be proposing that SG-1 fly down and take a look at when they met with General Hammond that afternoon. After they had gone over the salient facts about the find, so that Jonas could bone up on what he might need to know, he was finally able to bring up his quandary.

“Major Carter?” he began.

“Sam,” she reminded him.

“Right. Sam.”

He grinned. It was nice to be treated as a friend, and fortunately Teal’c had explained to him that unlike on Kelowna, a woman offering to be on a first name basis was not an invitation to more than simple friendship. Otherwise it might have led to awkward misunderstandings. Jonas paused for a moment to make sure what he had to say would be clear and not phrased in a way that might lead Major Carter – Sam – to think he was complaining, and asked her for her advice.

“The more I try to please the man, the unhappier it seems to make him,” he finished, forcing a smile to mask his unhappiness with the state of affairs.

Sam listened attentively, and then looked down at the table for a moment with the slight frown that usually indicated that she was solving a puzzle. When she looked up again, her eyes and her voice were gentle.

“The Colonel hates a yes man, Jonas,” she said. “I think it’s important with him to tell him what you really think. Sometimes he’s not going to like that, but it’s what he needs to make the right decisions in the field.”

Jonas looked up. Colonel O’Neill was standing in the doorway. He had been focused on Sam’s reaction and advice, and he had no idea how long he had been there or how much he had heard. He was coming towards them. This was awkward. Jonas placed his empty mug on the plate with the fruit rind, and gathering up the plate and the as yet untouched banana, he hastily excused himself, and returned to Dr. Jackson’s – no, his! – office to think over what Sam had said.

Really, there was some justice to the suggestion that he was a yes man. Initially he’d been stung by the term. He tried to be pleasant, and he liked to please, but he had argued hard after the tragic explosion of the prototype for the end of the bomb building project, and when that had failed, he had tried to impress upon the government the utmost importance that the bomb remain just a deterrent, never to be actually used. Colonel O’Neill had not been there to see that, though, and if he were honest with himself, his efforts came too late for Dr. Jackson and his fellow Kelownan scientists, and long after he himself had begun to have misgivings about the whole project. And there had been a few times when he’d soft pedaled something or failed to speak up for fear of the Colonel’s displeasure. Little things, to be sure, nothing that really mattered, but still… Jonas tried on the label, and found it fit, and found that he didn’t like it. Well, there was nothing he could do about the past, but he resolved to learn from this, and make changes for the future, and with that, realizing that it was time for the briefing, he gathered the relevant reports and headed for the briefing room.

At the briefing, after General Hammond had opened the floor, Sam was the first to speak, detailing her communications with Dr. Michaels, and urging that SG-1 be allowed to go down to follow up on the find and determine whether the base would likely be a continued source of fruitful discoveries, thus warranting continued funding beyond this season. She made what seemed to Jonas to be a pretty good case for the mission, and he was expecting Colonel O’Neill to agree with her analysis, as he usually did so when she seemed as enthusiastic about something as this.

“Oh, please, General!” he said. “Antarctica. I can’t say I care for the place!”

Did he actually shiver?

“And it takes like a zillion hours to fly down there. Couldn’t we just wait for them to upload the information to us here, and Carter can look it over in her nice warm office. If she really feels she needs some ice to get the full experience, I’d be glad to fetch some from the commissary!”

Jonas couldn’t believe his ears. This find was interesting. This find was important. It might have implications for their entire understanding of the history of Earth, the Goa’uld, and the stargates on this planet. This went to the core of the scientific portion of the SGC’s mission. Couldn’t he see that? Science was not just facts and theories and dry data. Science was a hands-on practical thing too, and one without the other was not whole! Jonas just could not stand by and watch this happen!”

“No, Colonel! You’re wrong! We need to go down there! We need to see this! Major Carter needs to look this over in person!”

Jonas was just about to open his mouth again to continue, when Colonel O’Neill interrupted him by making a strange, fisted pumping motion with both his arms.

“Yessssss!” he said. Then looking at Jonas, who was staring with some confusion, he cocked his head slightly to one side, and somewhat ruefully explained, “It’s different!”

“O’Neill was expressing approbation of your action, not agreeing to the sentiment,” Teal’c elucidated.

Oh!, thought Jonas. So he did hear.

Still, it was the first time he’d seen such whole-hearted approval for anything he’d said in a briefing from Colonel O’Neill. Jonas smiled.

Find the rest of the Jonas Alphabet Soup here at LJ or here at DW, which has longer allowable comment lengths

I look forward to reading others' takes on Y!

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
ziparumpazoo
Apr. 8th, 2010 04:07 pm (UTC)
I really like this. Jonas didn't realize how much he was limiting his potential by trying too hard, and yet the team has the patience to help him find his footing.
rachel500
Apr. 11th, 2010 10:10 am (UTC)
Nice look into Jonas finding his feet on the team. It did take him a while on screen to start to argue with Jack.
sg_fignewton
Apr. 11th, 2010 08:15 pm (UTC)
This is wonderful - tying Jonas' desire to be liked by Jack to their initial clash when Jack only saw the man who wouldn't defend Daniel, and then Jack's pleasure when Jonas finally speaks his mind. Fantastic!

Thanks again for your extra contribution. :)
artaxastra
Jun. 19th, 2010 10:44 pm (UTC)
Oh Jonas! Earth is baffling, and Jack doubly so!
thothmes
Jun. 20th, 2010 12:54 am (UTC)
However, fortunately for Jonas, Sam can give him a bit of a running start on the enigma that is Jack, and Teal'c can probably give him the equivalent of Earth and Its Inhabitants for Dummies.
sg_fignewton
Dec. 19th, 2011 05:21 pm (UTC)
Just recced this, whee! :)
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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