So, Hobo!Nick reminds me of someone...
And now I have to write it...
AU: What if Mini!Jack were nine instead of fifteen?
Jack stopped the truck in front of the elementary school and looked over at the kid in the passenger seat. 'Hard to believe he's my clone.' "So, this is what you want? It's really what you want?"
"Y...yeah." The boy looked up at him with wide determined eyes. Blue eyes. Yet another difference. Of course, the whole age thing was pretty big, so eye color wasn't that much of a deal. It was just that...he reminded him of... "I'm already kinda starting to lose some of my memory."
"But you won't forget everything."
"I--I know." The kid scrunched his face up. "It's weird."
"Oh believe me, kid, I know."
"No, that's not what I mean. I mean...two days ago, I woke up and knew who I was. I was you. And now..now I'm not. Sort of...I mean..."
Jack put his hand on the kid's shoulder. "Okay okay, don't hurt yourself. Look. Just...think of yourself as...as...what was that name they gave you?"
"Ph--Phoenix. Phoenix Wright."
Jack stared at the kid. "That is the dumbest name I have ever heard."
"Yeah well, you're the one who told them my name couldn't be traced back to you in any way, shape or form." The kid--now known as Phoenix--crossed his arms and pouted.
"Yeah. But Phoenix? Why not something simple like...Miles. Or Larry."
Phoenix sighed. "Didn't you even look at the forms you sig--oh wait. No, you didn't. You wouldn't. Because I wouldn't. I think."
There was an awkward silence, filled only with tiny 'pings' as the engine of the truck cooled off. Then--
"Maybe this isn't such a good idea--"
"Oh right, what I was trying to say before being rudely interrupted--"
"That's not what I meant!"
"Look, what I'm trying to say is, you just think of yourself as Phoenix Wright. Okay? Today, you get to figure out what he likes and what he doesn't like...and all the other stuff. And even if you remember things only Jack O'Neil should be able to recall...well, that's just a part of what makes you unique. And everyone's unique. Even the damn Goa'uld."
"Wow. That was...deep."
"Just don't tell Daniel or Carter. They might have heart attacks and then where would I be?"
Phoenix laughed. Then his face grew pensive and he looked Jack directly in the eye. "I guess we'll never see each other again, huh?"
Shifting uncomfortably in his seat, Jack looked away a moment. Once again, he reminded him of...
"It's okay. I get it. It makes you uncomfortable, what the Asgard did."
"And that's exactly what makes me uncomfortable," Jack said turning back to face the boy, "The fact that you DO understand. It really freaks me out."
He caught the hurt on Phoenix's face and remembered what Janet had told him. "He's reverting to the mental state of a nine year old. A coping tactic I suppose. Now that he knows he's going to live...he's go to live with himself."
"But that's not the reason," Jack found himself saying, "at least, not the only reason," he quickly interjected at the doubt in those serious blue eyes. "Part of it is for your own safety. And, I'm sure I don't have to explain what I mean by that."
Before Phoenix could answer, a bell rang and a crowd of overeager youngsters flooded past the truck, talking and giggling.
"I--I guess it's...time."
"Guess so. Well, Phoenix Wright? You're gonna wow them all right? I mean, not too much, Carter might get suspicious and try to pick my brain."
Phoenix laughed again, before undoing his seatbelt and opening the door. Before he slid out and walked away, he tilted his head and said, "I think we'll meet again sometime. Maybe play a few hands of poker?" And then he was gone, lost among the sea of grade-schoolers."
Jack shook his and started off for home, where he intended to drink beer and watch that Simpson's marathon.
Twenty-four years later.
The club was freezing cold. He scowled over at Daniel who shrugged helplessly back.
"I'm an old man now, you know, my bones can't take this kind of treatment."
"You don't look like an old man, Jack," his younger friend countered with a heavy sigh after running a hand through his greying locks.
"Not my fault the Asgard didn't warn us about that whole side effect to downloading the Anicents' Database. And I'm still old."
"So why are we here anyway," Jack quickly changed the subject as his eyes scanned the room, "it doesn't exactly scream "Archaeological Meet Place" or even "Old Friends Meet over a bowl of Borscht"."
"Actually, that's what the sign out front says Jack."
"What, that this is an Archaeological meeting place?"
"Oh God, please no."
The two of them stopped their argument and looked at each other. "Did you say that?"
Daniel shook his head and Jack looked over in the direction of the piano. A man sat with his back to them, a light blue ski cap covering his head. Since he was the only other person in here besides the cute little waitress, and the voice had been male...
"Something the matter?" Jack asked the pianist, "Forget where 'middle c' was or something?"
The man turned to face them, and Daniel groaned. "Oh no."
Jack just stared. He had a bad feeling about this. "You?"
"Yep. It's me. Your...uh..." his eyes darted to the doorway and then back, "son?"
Jack snorted. "Right. And I'm the Easter bunny. Which makes Daniel Santa Clause."
"Really? You two don't look like Santa Clause and the Easter Bunny," a cheerful voice chirrped from behind them. "Are you really Daddy's Daddy?"
"Something like that," Jack said as Daniel started choking. He smiled at the teenaged girl in the magicians outfit. "And you are?"
"Trucy. I guess that means your my Grandpa." She grinned widely and practically bounced in place.
The man on the piano stool seemed to be having trouble breathing as much as Daniel, only for a different reason. Jack scowled at him. "Find something amusing...son?"
"Nope. Not a thing. Dad." The same wide grin that his daughter was wearing was plastered on his face. It grew wider. "So, up for a hand of poker?