Title: The Strange Case of John Sheppard and Elizabeth Weir
Disclaimer: Don't own 'em! Ain't makin' money.
Recipient: Holly, who wanted John and Liz switching bodies. Er. Done!
Notes: All mistakes are my own, but love to Amanda and Lyss who beat it up right good.
Summary: Temporal hooji thingies don't just happen in the Milky Way galaxy.
Elizabeth really should have expected this. She'd known it was possible. She vaguely remembered something like it from somewhere around the second week of her SGC-report-reading-orgy.
The then-Colonel O'Neill, Dr. Jackson, Teal'c, and an off-worlder named Ma'chello had switched consciousnesses by means of some device that Ma'chello had built to fight the Goa'uld. Everyone had ended up in the proper bodies in time for Ma'chello to conveniently die.
At the time, she'd made herself a note that lots of SG-1's adventures seemed to be built for episodic television. These days, her life seems just as... epic.
She flexed John Sheppard's fingers and then waggled them at her bathroom mirror. John's image waggled fingers back. "I should have expected this."
It was John's voice too.
She raised an eyebrow at 'her' reflection. She needed coffee to deal with this. Lots of it. Or tequila.
She turned, doing her best to compensate for her suddenly higher center of balance, and moved out into her main room. Her headset was on her night table, just where she'd left it the night before. Pity her body hadn't gotten the memo.
"Peter? We have a problem."
It was really freaking her out to be staring at herself across the conference table. It was slightly worse to be staring at herself with John having been the one responsible for doing her hair.
The man apparently had no idea what to do with a comb.
It was sticking up in the front. And fluffy. Best not to dwell on whether or not he'd used conditioner.
"So, you two just woke up like this?" Rodney was doing a really, really bad job of not laughing.
Her body grunted and glowered and basically looked really intimidating at the scientist. "For the fiftieth time, McKay, YES. Well. I woke up when Beckett came storming in on me, in my room, with needles."
Elizabeth sighed and tried not to push her cuticles down. It was a nervous habit that she wasn't sure John would appreciate while she was borrowing his body. Although, good lord, did the man need a manicure.
It was nearing noon, and they – being Rodney, Carson, Peter, John, Elizabeth, and Bates – had been going around on this since almost seven. Beckett had run nearly every test possible. Blood had been drawn, brains had been scanned, and she'd even gotten to make a navigation chair sparkle and do fun holographic things. And for all the tests and discussion, it basically boiled down to the fact that she'd woken up, in her own bed, inside of John Sheppard. And John had woken up, in his own bed, inside of the body of Elizabeth Weir.
Tequila. Definitely needed the tequila.
"Well, Carson tells me there's nothing actually wrong with either of... your bodies," Rodney was tiling through something on his computer. He flipped it around to show them a full-color chart with two sets of brain scans. "These are the MRI's that we took three months ago as the standard physical. Elizabeth, yours is the one on the top left, John, yours is on the bottom left. John, from what Carson tells me, you're obviously more left-brained here. See the activity? Elizabeth, you're more equally balanced between the lobes.
"Now, on the right are the new scans that we've done. Elizabeth, your body now shows decidedly more left-brain activity, and John your body is more... well, you get my point. You ARE actually in each other's bodies!"
Huh. Elizabeth tilted her head. Okay, so she was kind of scary when she glared like that.
Rodney stopped and blinked at John. "What?"
"We knew all of this." John waved a hand indicating himself and Elizabeth. "We told you all of this already."
Rodney just shrugged. "Yes, well, now we have physical proof."
"Great. Rodney, thank you. But how do we fix it?" Letting Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dumb fight it out wasn't getting them anywhere.
"See, that's the bigger problem."
John and Elizabeth groaned.
"What? Are you two sure you didn't touch anything that might have done this? No weird electrical shocks? Strange devices?"
Rodney looked frustrated. To be fair, everyone looked frustrated. It would have been really convenient if she and John had done something as straightforward as poke a button wrong. But they'd barely even seen each other the previous day. John and his team had returned from a routine scout mission just before dinner, and Elizabeth had spent most of the day in her office doing reports and secretly perfecting her Tetris game. She was up to level fifty-seven.
"Rodney, look. We didn't do anything yesterday. At least not out of the ordinary! And you were with Teyla and Ford and John all day yesterday. You didn't notice anything strange, right?"
The other man sighed. "Okay, Elizabeth? Listening to your words coming out of John Sheppard is more than a little freaky-"
"But you have a point," he continued, ignoring his team leader's annoyed squawk. "Look, maybe this is just all a dream. One or both of you is asleep and having a really vivid nightmare."
"One of us is asleep?"
"Well excuse me for having no idea how you two ended up switching bodies. I mean, could we have weirder lives?"
Elizabeth winced and sighed. "Enough. Both of you."
Both men eyed her cautiously, but stopped talking.
"Look," she said. "Rodney? If one, or both, of us are asleep, how would we get out of this... lucid dream?"
He shrugged. "Wake up?"
"So you're advice is to just wake up?" Elizabeth blinked at him a lot. This was the best they could do?
"I didn't say it was good advice."
It was so silly she had to laugh. It came from deep in her belly, and even as she dropped her head into John's hands, she noted that he had a nice laugh when he – or she, as the case happened to be – let go. But really, they didn't have many better options.
When she finally finished giggling, her eyes misted with amused tears, she just shook her head and said,
"Well, I guess it's worth a try."
If nothing else, the twin reactions of shock were worth the entire escapade.
He walked her to his quarters.
On any other occasion, this would have been noteworthy. As it stood, both Carson and Rodney and Minears – their temporal theoretician – had agreed that they should probably spend the night in their body's quarters. That way, even though the bodies had managed to swap themselves out the night before, there'd be less of a chance of disorientation in the morning.
Elizabeth had just bitten her tongue and eaten another energy bar. Being in a guy's body was hungry work, or so it seemed.
"Um. Forgive the dirty laundry. I didn't really expect to have a woman in my quarters." John scuffed along – it seemed that he was having the same center of gravity problems she was – beside her, picking at his sleeve.
She snorted. "Don't worry. Two brothers. I think I can cope."
"Yep. I'm the middle child."
"No." He shrugged, looking a bit pensive. "Just not what I expected."
"We wake up in each other's bodies and you're okay, if a little confused, and you're weirded out by the fact that I have brothers?"
He grinned then, stopping in front of his door and gesturing for her to toggle the lock. "Well, you know. Strange alien hooji things are kind of mundane after five months here. But you, actually sharing personal information? Let's just say it's going in my calendar."
She glared and swatted him on the shoulder. "You don't have a calendar."
"Hey, hey! Watch it! You're just beating up yourself, you know."
"Yeah, yeah." She'd have stuck her tongue out at him, but that would have been silly. Not as weird as the earlier bathroom trips, but still freaky. "I'm going in now."
"Aren't you going to walk me to my door? After all, I'm the girl."
She snorted and hit the lock, moving into his quarters. Just before she crossed the threshold, she was stopped by a hand on her shoulder. It felt good. Elizabeth turned to look at him, having to adjust her headtilt slightly down. "Yes, John?"
She smiled at him, shyly. Not for the first time that day wondering if it was weird for him to watch himself smile at... well. Himself. "You too, John."
She slipped into his quarters, the door closing firmly behind her.
The morning sun was bright and insistent across the side of her face.
Elizabeth opened her eyes. Yep. Her ceiling.
It had just been a dream. Thank GOD. Although, strangely, she could still really go for that phantom tequila.
Grunting softly, she flipped over and curled around herself. What a freaky dream. Waking up in Sheppard's body. How... silly. She snuggled down in her sheets just a little bit and squinted at her hands. Yep. Her nails. And hands.
She had almost drifted back to sleep when her earpiece beeped insistently. She made a blind grab for it and stuck it in, flopping on her back and sitting up a little. "What?"
"See... Here's the thing. It's not actually Rodney."