He'd always managed to keep his temper from her. At least until two days after her seventeenth birthday. It was then that she went jogging on her own for a bit when she couldn't raise him on the comms system and, as she jogged past his room, stopped to see if he was around.
He'd just finished trashing the room and she furrowed her brow at the broken bits of model plane and the slats of his bed on the ground.
"Get out of here, Hattie," he growled at her.
She'd been fingering the piece of wing that she'd picked up from the ground by the door when he raised his voice and to hide the fact that he'd hurt her feelings, she tossed it toward the broken bed with a curt, "Who's the biggest idiot you know?" before turning and jogging off.
It was her own mistake, she would readily admit (to herself), going back a couple hours later. It had bothered her seeing him so beaten down. So, she headed back in that direction after a session with Teal'c and as the door slid open again, she saw Cam picking up what was left of the room.
"Didn't I tell you to get lost?" His tone hadn't changed much, and it still stung.
"Have you always been a jerk?"
This time, she didn't have anything to throw, but it didn't matter. She flashed him a dirty look he didn't see and walked away.
Six weeks later, they were jogging and he made a quip about her glasses, she remarked back about his shoes, he commented rudely on her hair and she stopped in the middle of the hall to ask, "Who picks out your clothes?"
"What's wrong with my clothes?"
"Ever think about picking something that doesn't say US Air Force on it?" She raised an eyebrow and moved the tones from teasing into derisive.
"I'm IN the US Air Force," he reminded her, his tone also changing. His, however, bypassed derision and went straight into, 'not kidding'.
She resumed her jog and wasn't entirely surprised when he didn't join her again for almost three weeks.
"What makes YOU so special?" She was standing there with her arms crossed, the glare she'd inherited straight from her mother firmly on her face.
Hattie faltered, and it showed, but only for a second. "I said, what makes YOU so special?"
Cam took two steps in her direction, and Hattie stopped breathing. He gave her a long look and said, "I'm still Colonel on board this ship and you'd do well to remember that, Catherine Hatshepsut Jackson. You're not your momma to be sneakin' around here."
At his pointed finger, she gave a small huff and spun on her heel.
It was New Year's and the entire ship had decided that it was going to be a semi-formal affair, the core producing outfits for everyone. She had chosen a dress that wouldn't cause her father to have a heart attack, but looked nice and accentuated the curves she'd come to notice on her body.
She headed down the hall and accepted Teal'c compliment with a quiet grace and a polite, "Thank you."
Her dad had kissed her cheek and spun her in a circle telling her that he was proud of her, but that she needed to go to bed early because it was going to be an early morning.
Grandpa Hank had said he wanted the first dance, Sam had said she liked how Hattie had done her hair and just then, Cam arrived.
"Hey, Cam," she said, refusing to admit to herself, much less anyone else, that his opinion mattered most. "Whatcha think?"
"Yeah, it's nice. Looks okay on you."
Hattie glared as the rest of the group started eating and ignoring the two of them, off in their own little corner. "What about you, CAMERON? You call THAT sexy?"
"Wasn't trying to impress you," he snarked back before heading in the direction of the food table.
This time, her feelings really WERE hurt. Who ELSE did he have to look nice for? Landry!?
It was up to her to ignore him and she did, taking turns dancing with Landry, her father and then Teal'c, who was nothing but gentlemanly toward her. Constantly and unwaveringly. He spun her around the dance floor and she laughed, totally enjoying herself. A faster paced tune picked up and she let go of Teal'c to move independently while still standing close. He, too, moved to the beat and the two of them laughed and smiled, enjoying each other's company. When the music ended, she placed a hand against her chest as a sign of fatigue and Teal'c took the hint, bowing slightly and moving back to the party.
Nearby, a voice came low and sardonic from the shadows. "That was dancing, not a fit, right?"
Hattie exhaled and rolled her eyes toward the sound. "As long as it was 'nice', what do you care?"
Shaking her head in exasperation, she stalked past him, completely unprepared for the hand that grabbed her elbow to stop her. The snarl made her heart drop into her stomach and for a moment she couldn't breathe as his voice came at her again.
Months passed and they ran in silence, with that only being broken if and when Cam asked if Sam had made any progress with the core technology. It meant that Hattie had stopped working with Sam just so she could tell Cam so and he'd stop asking. One day, she arrived for their jog and he wasn't there. She shrugged and swiped her card for the level they ran on and her card didn't work.
With frustration, she went from one transport to another her passkey refusing to work on any of them, effectively confining her to Level 14.
He didn't come to dinner, he wasn't in his quarters. She didn't want to tell her father or any of the others about any of the problems the two of them had been having because when she talked them out, it sounded so... petty. Worse, it sounded like some kind of... spat, and she hated that.
Finally, sometime in the middle of the night, with Hattie sprawled on the ground outside his quarters, he came back to his room.
When he swiped his card and his door didn't open he glanced down at the figure on the floor. He nudged her with his foot and she practically jumped to her feet.
"What's the matter, Colonel Mitchell? Can't get in?"
"Fix it now, Hattie."
"No. Not until you fix my passkey."
"Who died and put you in charge?" Came her snapped retort and he paused, for a moment, flustered.
"I AM in charge, after Landry," he pointed out.
"I didn't go to Landry because this is STUPID. You're acting like a kid. I want my access back," she told him.
"There are things on this ship that aren't safe," he told her, pulling things out of his ass. Her eyes got wide.
"I've been on this ship since before I was TWO and now there are things on it that can hurt me? You want to try it again? WHAT can hurt me, Cam?" He stayed silent and she moved closer, poking him hard in his cotton covered chest. "WHAT can hurt me? TELL ME!"
"ME!" He finally shouted back. "I can hurt you. I can hurt you, Hattie. Me." With a groan, he pulled her close and kissed her, his mouth coming down on hers as if he'd never wanted to kiss anyone like that in his life.
For her, it was a dream come true. When he deepened the kiss, she followed his lead, completely unaware of what to do. It was her first kiss and she was at a loss. He wasn't pulling away, though, which meant she had to be doing something right. After another minute, he finally shoved her away.
"Go to bed, Hattie."
She blinked. "What?"
"Are you serious?" She was breathing hard and her face was hot and he was telling her to GO AWAY?! Was he out of his mind?
"I'm serious. We'll talk tomorrow, but right now-?" He shook his head and held up his hand and motioned at his door. "Fix this first."
Dazed, she reached over and swiped her card, then watched as he walked into his quarters alone. As his door swished shut behind him, she reached up to touch her lips. A smile crossed them and she felt a hot blush come over her again.
He was definitely in charge.