Appreciate all the thoughts, ideas, etc, but looks like jacking into the soundcard IS the only option at this point. To answer other folks questions and such:
Creative Labs Live 5.1
8X8X DVD Burner
(At least the parts thta should apply<g>)
Windows XP Professional
No worries about offending me with "possible" ideas, years of being called in to fix other folks issues, and of slapping myself in the head with ahearty "Doh!" over ones of my own have taught me: ANYONE can (and often will) overlook the simplest answer.
CDBurner, 2 years old.
DVD Burner 2 days old <g>.
Both are installed and functioning with zero probelms (excepting of course this whole headphone thing).
CDRom is master, DVD is slave.
Both have audio cables firmly attached to themselves and to the board.
Disabled digital functions on each of them, and also changed settings in Media Player to analog (even though I never use that program (I'm a WinAmp kinda guy)).
Methinks I am just hosed for anything other than soundcard jack at this point. *shrug*
Thanks again for all the tips and ideas though.
Have a great day tomorrow everyone!