Of Blue-Eyed Blondes and British Brunettes

Stargate:SG-1/Sanctuary Xover. While exploring a planet, Jack O'Neill steps through a portal which leads him to meet a woman who is strikingly familiar, yet completely different.
Implied Sam/Jack, Helen/Will and Jack/Helen.
I wrote this for gayfortinafey for Christmas but I'm (finally) posting it here now because I've got another fic in the works that ties in with this very slightly.
Reviews are appreciated as this is my first attempt at writing a lot of these characters!

"Sir, I don't think this is a good idea." Carter looked worried but O'Neill couldn't see any immediate danger, they had been in situations far more perilous than this. Plus exploring new worlds was part of their job.

He turned to where Teal'c and Daniel were hovering just behind the two of them.

"If I'm not back in half an hour, inform General Hammond and send a rescue team in after me." He informed them, trying to ignore the wary look Sam was still giving him.

The three remaining members of his team watched as O'Neill stepped through the vortex that shimmered blue in the semi-dark cave they had stumbled into. Sam looked across at Daniel and Teal'c once Jack had disappeared, wishing they had supported her. They all knew how stubborn O'Neill could be and he was their superior officer but he might have re-thought his actions if they had formed a united front.

They stood staring at the vortex for some time after Jack had disappeared through it, hoping he would not be gone long.

O'Neill experienced a sensation similar to when he stepped through the Stargate as he passed through the blue light of the vortex. He stumbled a little as he came out the other side, landing awkwardly on one knee hoping he hadn't grazed it on the cold concrete.

He looked around, the bright blue sky hurt his eyes after the dark interior of the cave he had just left. He couldn't see anyone around, in fact that only thing he could really see was a huge granite building as ornate as a cathedral. O'Neill had no idea where he was, but this world looked much less foreign than the one he had left, it actually resembled Earth more than anything.

"Security breach!" He heard someone shout followed by a crackle of static from a radio. The owner of the voice appeared, a good looking man of about thirty with spiky light brown hair dressed in clothes that looked familiar to Jack. "Who are you, and what do you want here?" He asked.

O'Neill raised his hands up in front of him in a surrendering gesture. "My name is Colonel Jack O'Neill of the United States Air Force."

"Air Force, huh?" The man asked. "What are you doing out here? And, for that matter, how did you get in here?" He seemed to be genuinely surprised.

"I, uh, it's complicated." Jack replied, not wanting to give away too much too soon. "I'm not here to do you any harm."

The other man looked at O'Neill for a moment, trying to judge whether the man could be trust. After a moment or two he seemed to make up his mind.

"Come with me, I think Magnus will want to meet you." He quickly radioed through to Magnus to tell her not to worry about the security breach.

"Magnus?" O'Neill asked, following the younger man towards the impressive building.

"Yes, Doctor Helen Magnus, she's in charge here."

"Ah, I see." Jack replied. "And you would be?"

"Doctor Will Zimmerman."

Jack nodded slowly and thoughtfully. "Is this some kind of hospital?" This was just typical, ending up in a medical facility of some sort. He wasn't particularly fond of doctors, save for Janet Frasier of course.

Will smiled for a moment and his amusement annoyed O'Neill. "Not exactly, but I suppose you could call it that. We refer to it as the 'Sanctuary'."

O'Neill sighed, this was becoming worse that he had expected.

Once inside the Sanctuary, Will gestured to a comfortable looking chair in the hallway and went to find Magnus.

"Come in!" Helen Magnus called in her crisp British accent when Will tapped on her door.

He strode into the office and didn't bother with any preamble.

"The man I found in the grounds, he says his name is Colonel Jack O'Neill of the US Air Force. I thought you'd want to meet with him."

Helen looked intrigued, big blue eyes sparkling beneath thick lashes. "Did he say how he got in?"
"He said it was 'complicated' but he genuinely seems not to know nothing about the Sanctuary, I think he thinks it's some sort of mental facility or something."

Helen raised an eyebrow. "Sometimes he might not be that far off the mark." She smirked, her eyes glittering further still. "Send him in, please Will."

Will went out into the corridor to find O'Neill again who seemed to be deep in conversation with Henry. He couldn't stop the smile that crept over his facial features when he approached the Colonel.

"Dr. Magnus will see you now." He said, escorting O'Neill to the office door.

Jack knocked briefly too, poking his head around the door. He was not at all prepared for what he saw. It wasn't often that Jack O'Neill was surprised, he had seen more things in his life than people could even imagine in their wildest fantasies but the woman before him knocked him for six.

"Carter?" He asked, feeling somewhat stupid and suddenly feeling like perhaps this was a dream after all.

Magnus looked puzzled. "Um no, I'm Dr. Helen Magnus and I'm in charge of the Sanctuary."

"You just look..." Whoa, he thought. Even the Carter in the most erotic of his fantasies had never taken on this form. He had never imagined her not being blonde and for a moment he was transfixed by the nearly black curls that cascaded over her shoulders. Carter was beautiful, he would be a blind fool not to notice that but this Magnus woman was something else entirely. She looked exactly the same as Carter, save for the hair of course and he had never seen Sam wear anything like this. When she looked at him there was still the same twinkle in her bright blue eyes it was disconcerting. He had to clear his throat in order to be able to focus at all.

"Dr. Zimmerman tells me he found you in the grounds but not how you got here." Helen continued, pretending not to acknowledge O'Neill probing glance which almost bordered on being indecent.

"I can't tell you much of it, I'm prevented by the government but I'd like to know where exactly I am before I tell you how I got here."

"Fine," Magnus replied simply. "This is the Canadian branch of the Sanctuary network, myself and my team work with abnormals, keeping them safe and helping them back into their natural environment when possible."

"And by 'abnormal'?..."

Helen smiled, picking up the old fashioned looking telephone from her desk and asked someone for some tea.

"You haven't answered my..." He stalled as the Bigfoot came into the office setting a tray of tea things down in front of Magnus on the desk.

"Ah," O'Neill responded as he looked up at the Big guy, maybe he didn't have to hide anything from the Sam Carter look-a-like after all.

"Not necessarily the reaction I was expecting from you," Helen said, pouring out two cups of tea once they were alone again.

"Would it surprise you if I said I'd seen things much more extraordinary than that?" O'Neill asked, taking a sip of tea and trying not to pull a face.

Helen saw the look of mild disgust as Jack drank and smirked. When he saw her, Jack felt something clench inside; the expression had been so like the way Sam often looked at him when he had done or said something amusing. He took a breath, beginning to wish this had been camomile tea to stop the erratic beating of his heart.

"Not at all," Helen replied, composing herself although her eyes still danced with blue sparks. "You look like a man who's seen the world."

"And more besides." He added.

"So how exactly did you get here?"

"My team and I were exploring a planet," He didn't bother to hide anything now, he was sure Helen would believe him and that she could be trusted. "And we came across a vortex in one of the caves on said planet, and I decided to see where it led." With a sudden realisation, O'Neill looked at his watch though he doubted it would help him at all. "Talking of my team, I should get back to them. I told them that if I wasn't back in half an hour, to call our boss or send someone after me." Although part of him would have loved to see Sam come face to face with Helen. He had to stop his train of thought before it tumbled off the tracks straight into the territory of the gutter.

O'Neill stood up and Helen did the same. "So, where exactly am I?"

"We're in Canada?" Magnus repeated, missing his point.

"No...where in 'when'?" He asked, confusing even himself now.

"The same time you came from, I assume." Helen replied, not making things any clearer for Jack. "From what I can tell the vortex you stepped through was a portal between realities."

O'Neill groaned, not alternate realities again, he was beginning to get sick of them. He wondered idly if he and Carter were married, engaged or if he was dead in this particular reality.

"And people just wander from wherever they came from into your grounds all time?" He asked.

"Not often, it must be said. Not for the last hundred years I don't think." Helen replied thoughtfully.

"And I suppose you remember that very well." Jack joked, causing Helen to smirk but she didn't bother to correct him, she already seemed to be throwing him off as it was.

She walked him out of her office and out into the grounds.

"It was nice of you to stop by," Helen smiled ironically as O'Neill headed towards the area he had arrived in. "If you're ever in this particular reality again, feel free to visit, you'd be most welcome Colonel O'Neill."

"Call me Jack, and thank you." He replied. Helen's offer was very tempting but he knew he could never come here again, not without suffering a severe heart attack anyway.

He found the correct bush that the vortex hid behind and looked at the glowing blue light. Part of him was having second thoughts, wanting to stay here with this woman who was so familiar let so mysterious at the same time but he had to get back to his team; they needed him and he needed them.

"Goodbye Jack." Helen smiled, giving him a little wave as he jumped through the vortex.

She stood there for a few moments before Will approached her.

"Who was that?" He asked incredulously. "And how did he get here?"

They walked back to the Sanctuary together, Will may have been her best protégé but there were still some things that she didn't think he was ready to know about.

Sam was pacing the cave while Daniel slumped against the wall and Teal'c kept guard.

"He's been gone twenty seven minutes now." She said, concern apparent in her voice as well as her anxious mannerisms.

"He'll be okay." Daniel tried to reassured her, but it hadn't worked for the last twenty seven minutes so he doubted it would now.

"I concur." Teal'c added but Sam didn't feel any better.

"See," Daniel said as Jack appeared through the vortex.

"Hey kids." He smiled, looking from Daniel to Teal'c and finally at Sam. He swallowed hard, the image of Helen's face appearing in his face. They really were identical. "It was just another alternate universe, nothing to worry about."

They bombarded him with questions but Jack waved them away. "I'm starving, let's get back to Earth before I die of hunger."

Realising that Jack wasn't going give away any more information they followed him out of the cave towards the Stargate.

Sam and Jack found themselves alone at a table together in the canteen a few hours later, Jack shovelling pie into his mouth while Sam toyed with her blue jell-o.

"Have you ever thought about dying your hair?" Jack asked, he hadn't been able to stop thinking about Helen since he'd arrived back on Earth.

Sam was clearly thrown by the question. "No, uh, have you?"

"I think that maybe brown hair would suit you, Carter."

Subconsciously, Sam's hand went to her short blonde hair. "You do?"

He nodded. "And can you do a British accent?"

She looked even more puzzled now. "Sort of, um, 'how about a cup of tea?'" She said in a faux British accent.

Jack's jaw nearly hit the tabletop, the resemblance was beyond uncanny. Finishing off his pie and his coffee, he excused himself for the table. He knew for certain what he'd be dreaming of tonight.