Previous Episode << >> Next Episode
Not long after returning to England, James joins Lena and the others in the abandoned city of Manchester.
27th April, 8th & 9th May 2004
20th, 29th - 31st May & 4th June 2004
A shuttle landed in the fields nearby a quiet housing estate. Only metres away were houses that had mostly collapsed, nearby them was piles of debris. Right next to that was a steep drop with no bottom in sight.
Several men started getting off the shuttle that had landed, Stephen and James were among them. Stephen glanced back at some of the guys, "I'm not looking forward to this. I lived in the Tanfield village for years."
One guy groaned, "it is always harder to look at remains of a place you lived in. We've all done this before."
Stephen stopped to let most of the guys walk ahead of him. "Maybe you can give the Slayer a grand tour of the hole, he should love that," another guy sneered.
James came up beside Stephen, "did I miss an insult?"
"Yes but it's the usual, they're running out of material," Stephen groaned in response. He and James walked closer to the edge carefully avoiding the worst of the debris. "According to the boss this was the largest game since the Manchester one. It took out most of Tanfield, including the primary school, half of good old Tanfield Comp."
"All I can say about the comprehensive school is finally," James said.
"Good thing it was empty at the time. Some of Tantobie got pulled down as you can see," Stephen said. He and James got to the edge, all they could see was a huge square shaped crater spanning a mile. "Worst of all, because of the numerous hills the Game left a very deep square shaped hole."
"Uh huh," James said uneasily. "When did this happen?"
A few of the other guys headed over to them. "Just on Saturday. Speaking of which, how was your trip to Voyager anyway?" one guy bitterly asked. He walked off, the others followed him.
"Don't let them get to you, they're just idiots. I doubt you would have been able to stop it in time," Stephen said.
"Right, tell that to everyone who lived here," James muttered. He followed the others away from the sight.
Another shuttle clumsily landed nearby the other one. Meanwhile a couple of the men were trying to lift a large bit of metal.
"I think we have a problem," one guy groaned.
"Ok guys put it down," the biggest guy said. The others dropped it back down on the debris below it.
The shuttle door opened, Lena stepped out of it and headed in their general direction. "Hey, have you seen..." she started to say.
One of the men walked up to her, "ok honey before you ask, we don't let anybody work here. I don't think this is for you sweetheart."
"Don't scare her off, I'm sure she could pick up the tiles that fell off roofs," another guy said.
Lena just looked amused, "really, you read my mind. I was thinking of picking them all up and throwing them at you."
The two guys glanced at each other, grinning. "Well honey if you were a little bigger we'd think about letting you work here. Right David?"
The other guy smiled, "oh I dunno, maybe we should keep her. Looking at debris and holes in the ground is an eyesore."
Lena shook her head, "what are you having problems with?"
"Nothing that you can handle," David replied.
Lena smiled as she walked over to the large bit of metal. She easily lifted it up, "where do you want it?"
All the guys stared at her in shock. "Oh she must be the Slayer's sis," one guy muttered.
"I sure hope so," David grumbled as he pointed at a large skip nearby. Lena came back over to them after dumping the metal.
"Now have you seen James?" she asked.
David glanced at his partner, "uh, partially inside one of those houses."
"Partially?" Lena said.
David shrugged, "half of the house collapsed."
"Oh," Lena said as she walked towards one of the houses.
James came up to her from the collapsed house, "what was that all about?"
"Oh nothing, I just wanted to show up some pigs," Lena replied.
"It's fun isn't it?" James said. Lena just grinned in response. "Doesn't shut them up though."
"Well I could smack a few of them while I'm here. It's not against the rules is it?" Lena said sweetly.
"Do what you want," James said.
Lena glanced over in the crater's direction, "Sandi and Kevin were very close to stopping that."
"Oh, what happened?" James asked.
Lena sighed, "Daniel told them about it, rushed into a shuttle but weren't exactly sure where to go. They only knew when they saw the cube, by the time they landed it was too late."
"Well I'm getting stick for going to Voyager on the same day as this," James said.
Lena shrugged, "well I was on the Enterprise, remember?"
The large guy came passed, "talk to the girl later, you've got work to do."
James rolled his eyes, "whatever it is Lena, it'll have to be quick."
"We do need your help with something. There's a nest somewhere, well we think so as the number of vampires isn't going down. We could do with someone who knows the area," Lena said.
"I'd love to but I don't have time. I can't get away from this job and it takes up most of the time I have," James said.
"Right, different timezones throw you off. Well they know you're a Slayer right, they'll let you off if you tell them," Lena said.
"Actually no they won't. I have to be punished first you see," James muttered.
Lena groaned, "do they not trust you or something?"
"It's not that, they just don't like me," James replied.
Lena raised her eyebrow, "is this because you've been absent from Earth for ten years. They know who I am now and there's been no attitude since they found out."
"I dunno, maybe they know you can beat them up without making things worse," James said.
"Maybe. What about the weekend?" Lena asked.
"Definitely not. Jessie wasn't happy that I left last weekend, I promised I wouldn't do anything this weekend," James replied.
"I get the idea. Gee now we both know why you can't mix a Slayer life with anything else," Lena muttered.
"I'll try and come down whenever I can. I'll need one hell of a good excuse to get out of work for one day, or just half a day. I can't say I'm going to Manchester after all," James said.
"Well I'm sure you'll come up with something, you were always the skiver," Lena said.
"Great thanks," James muttered.
Lena headed back towards the shuttle, "just give me a call when you can come."
Stephen walked over to James once Lena went inside her shuttle. "She was cute, who was she?"
James didn't look too happy, "my sister."
"Oh, if she's the Slayer I'll not bother," Stephen muttered.
"I really wish you would," James said.
Stephen grinned, then he got it, "oh hey!"
"Relax, I'm kidding," James muttered as he walked away.
Stephen opened up a tricorder, it started beeping, "hmm, is that you?" James stopped and turned around, Stephen pointed the tricorder at him, the beeping got louder. "Oh must be."
James came back over to him, "let me see that." Stephen looked confused as he passed the tricorder to him. He walked closer to a large pile of debris inside the house itself. "Can't be."
"What?" Stephen stuttered.
"Someone's alive under there," James replied.
Stephen stepped backwards, "guys we need a doctor or something!" A few of the guys rushed over.
"What's going on?" one asked.
"Oh god," James stuttered as he looked at the other side of the debris. A head of a very young girl was sticking out of the bottom of the debris. "There's a kid under here."
"You heard him, get a bloody ambulance here or something," Stephen snapped at the two guys. They both rushed back the way they came. Stephen rushed over to the pile itself, "the rescue crews always get survivors, how did they miss the kid?"
"I don't know, here," James replied. Stephen took the tricorder back off him, then put it in his pocket. They both started to pull off the debris.
The larger guy came by, "somebody called for an ambulance, what's wrong?"
James groaned, "there's a little girl buried under this!"
"Ok ok, don't take that tone with me," the guy grumbled. He headed over to help.
They managed to clear the debris off the girl. James and Stephen knelt down nearby her, Stephen opened up the tricorder he had again. Just then the girl opened up her eyes.
David walked into the house, "an ambulance will be here in five minutes."
The little girl looked up at the guys. "What... what's going on?" she asked weakly.
"Uh, there was an accident, but we're getting help," Stephen replied nervously.
"I can't move," the girl muttered.
"Probably a good thing," Stephen whispered to the bigger guy.
"For god's sake, give her some space and let me talk to her," James muttered.
"Why and why you?" David asked.
"Someone has to keep her mind off this, and I know how to talk to kids," James replied.
"Fine," David muttered. The others backed away.
"Ok sweetheart, what's your name?" James asked.
The girl looked around before looking up at him, "Kim."
"Ok Kim, a few people are coming to make you feel better. Do you think you can put up with this lot until then?" James said.
Kim giggled, "yeah."
"Charming," David muttered.
"So how old are you?" James asked.
"I'm two," Kim replied. "Who are all of you?"
"I haven't learned all the names yet so I may get it wrong," James replied as he looked up at the guys. "The guy with dark hair is Stephen, the tall stupid looking one is David. That big guy is Matt."
"At least I'm tall unlike someone," David muttered.
"But who are you? Mummy told me not to talk to strangers," Kim asked.
"Well we call him Slayer, idiot, jackass, but only Slayer when he's around," David replied.
"That's a funny name," Kim said.
James groaned, "it's not my name. It's James."
"Oh ok," Kim said quietly.
Matt pressed his commbadge, "Johnny, status."
In: "The ambulance is still coming, god."
"Hey, do you want to be fired?" Matt snapped.
In: "No sir, Johnny out."
"So do you all live here?" Kim asked.
"No, we're just working here. You obviously live here," James replied.
"Uh huh, me and mummy just moved here," Kim said.
"Bad timing," Stephen muttered.
"Keep quiet Stephen," James said. Stephen smiled innocently. "Ok have you made any friends here yet?"
"No, do any of you have kids? None here are nice," Kim asked. She closed her eyes for a few seconds, "oh I'm tired."
Stephen opened up the tricorder, Matt walked over to his side to look at it. "That ambulance better hurry up," he said quietly.
David knelt down nearby Kim and James. "I think we should quit with the useless trivia."
"What he means is that he doesn't have any kids," James muttered, glaring at him.
"How did you know that?" David asked.
"It was rather obvious," James replied.
Matt sighed, "I had a daughter but she died."
"Why?" Kim asked.
"Uh, I'd rather not talk about it," Matt said, glancing at Stephen.
"Oh, I don't, not yet," Stephen said.
Kim looked in James' direction with tired eyes. He sighed, "I have two, my daughter's a similar age to you."
Kim managed a weak smile, "cool, can I meet her?"
In: "Ambulance has arrived sir."
Matt tapped his commbadge, "thank god, tell them to hurry."
"Um, we do live in America, but I'll see what I can do," James replied as he looked up at the others.
Matt stepped closer to them, "somebody's coming now."
"Good," James said. He looked back down at Kim, her eyes were closed again.
"Oh," Stephen muttered. Everyone looked at him, "I think she's dead."
David stood up slowly, "talk about bad timing."
that day, Indiana:
"I'm sorry but it's all the time, you've got to do something about it," Jessie said.
Gretchen folded her arms, "all the time?"
Jessie nodded, "that's what I said, what kind of tea bags do you get?"
"I replicate plain ones," Gretchen replied.
"Fine, but you should cut down," Jessie said.
Duncan walked into the room, "hi mum."
"Hey Dunc, how was school?" Jessie asked.
"Meh," Duncan replied, he sat down in front of the TV. "I got maths homework and I didn't do anything wrong."
"Duncan everyone gets homework," Gretchen said.
"Oh, I thought it was a punishment," Duncan said.
Jessie smiled, "yeah I used to think so too. Your dad can help you with it, back at primary he was good at maths."
"So he'll tell me the answers, cool," Duncan said.
"Not exactly," Jessie said. She looked towards the door, "where is your dad?"
"I dunno, he was in a bad mood the whole way home," Duncan replied.
"Monday blues I guess," Gretchen commented. She walked into the kitchen.
James walked into the living room, "hey."
"Hey," Jessie said, she pulled herself up from the sofa. "What's up?"
"I just had one of those days that really suck," James replied.
"Yeah me too," Duncan muttered, flicking through a maths book.
Jessie laughed briefly, "what happened?"
"We were sent to a new Game site today," James replied.
"A new one? There hasn't been a new one for a while," Jessie said.
"Oh there was at the weekend. Guess where," James said.
"It wasn't New Manchester was it?" Jessie questioned.
"Nope, guess again," James sighed.
"Shield Row, Tanfield," Jessie said.
"Yep, Tanfield slash Tantobie," James muttered, he sat down on the sofa.
"Oh, I know this sounds insensitive but did the game get rid of our old school?" Jessie asked.
"A bit of it yeah," James replied.
"Oh," Jessie groaned. She sat down next to him. "So, what else happened?"
"How did you know there was something else?" James asked.
Jessie shrugged, "instinct."
"We found a survivor, a two year old girl," James said.
"That's odd, wouldn't the mother or father have reported her missing or something?" Jessie questioned.
"She never mentioned her dad. My guess is she only lived with her mum, and she's too dead to notice she was missing," James replied.
"Oh," Jessie said. "How is the girl?"
"Well let's just say if I'm right about her mum, we don't have to worry about how she'll take the news," James replied.
"Oh right," Jessie muttered.
"Like I said, bad day," James said.
Jessie nodded, looking uncomfortable, "Duncan got maths homework."
Duncan however wasn't listening, he was frowning at a page in the book. "What the, we only got up to the ten times table, how do I times by fifty six. I knew that cow of a teacher hated me."
Jessie tried not to laugh, "I think he's stuck already."
"I'll help him," James said. He got off the sofa, "Dunc, why don't we both work on that upstairs."
"Why, I like it here?" Duncan moaned.
"TV and long multiplication, not a good combination," James replied.
"Oh," Duncan groaned.
"Watch TV afterwards," James said, heading for the other door.
Duncan climbed back onto his feet with the book in his hands. "Fifty six, I can't even times that by two, stupid cow." He followed James out of the room.
Jessie shook her head as Gretchen came back in the room with a cup of tea. "That didn't last long then?"
Gretchen looked at her cup, "no."
"Can I ask you a question?" Jessie asked.
"As long as it isn't about tea addictivity," Gretchen replied. She sat down in another chair.
"It's not," Jessie said. "That job of James' isn't good for him, he's getting more and more depressed every day. I don't know what to do, so what would you do?"
"Hmm, I noticed too but you obviously know him better than me," Gretchen sighed. "He's a Slayer so he's supposed to prevent the messes he has to clean up every day. It might be getting to him because he somehow feels responsible for it."
"But he's not though," Jessie said.
"I know, that's not the point. Besides he's getting up early hours of the morning, working twelve hour shifts at a job he probably hates. He brings his oldest child home from school, spends one or two hours with you and the kids and has to go to bed very early to catch up on sleep," Gretchen said. "The problem is that this is a punishment, there's nothing any of us can do about it, unless..."
"Unless, unless what?" Jessie questioned.
"The job probably seems more demanding and it takes up more of his time, because he works in a different timezone to where he lives. Maybe if you moved to England, that may help," Gretchen replied.
Jessie sighed, "we discussed that already. There's only one place we can go over there, but I can't stand the woman who owns the place, we fell out years ago. Most of all she's not going to welcome me back with open arms when she sees James with me."
"I don't understand," Gretchen said.
"She was my foster mum. For a brief time she had adopted James, so in a way he was my foster brother for a while," Jessie said. "She went nuts when she found out about two kisses we shared when we were teens. Imagine what her reaction will be when she sees us with two kids, a wedding ring on our fingers and, well me pregnant with a third kid."
"I see," Gretchen said.
"I want to help him but I'd rather move in with the vampires in Manchester than go back there," Jessie said.
"His sister got a flat in New Manchester. Can't you do the same?" Gretchen questioned.
"No, they're not big enough for families," Jessie replied.
"And there's nowhere else to go, are you sure?" Gretchen asked.
Jessie groaned, "no, because of the Games destroying parts of that country it is hard to find a place to live there."
"Ok well it's simple," Gretchen said. Jessie glanced at her. "If you love and care about James enough, you'll be willing to grit your teeth and live there until you can find a new place."
"It isn't that simple, you have no idea what this woman was like," Jessie muttered.
Gretchen smiled, "Jessie this isn't exactly a new problem to me, my husband was a Starfleet admiral. I was obviously married longer than you've been to James so far, so let me tell you something. A marriage won't work if you're not willing to make sacrifices, I'm sure he'd do the same for you if the roles were reversed."
"And you said you don't know him well," Jessie said, raising her eyebrow.
"I'm right I take it," Gretchen said.
"Dead right, he would do the same for me. I'll go and talk to him," Jessie said. She pulled herself off the sofa, and headed out of the room.
"I don't get it," Duncan pouted.
"I know it's hard at first. You don't times that number by fifty six, you times that number with fifty and six separately, then add them like I showed you," James said.
"But, I don't know the fifty times table," Duncan moaned.
"You don't need to, you know the five times table right?" James questioned.
"Uh huh," Duncan replied.
"Well what's five times six?" James asked.
Duncan looked up at the ceiling as he thought about it, "thirty, why?"
"Well add a zero the end of that number," James replied.
"Three hundred, that's not right," Duncan muttered.
"I know but that's all you do to times fifty by six," James said.
Duncan looked confused for a moment, "oh, I get what she was talking about now."
"Yeah teachers have a tendency to not explain things right. Maybe I should be one," James said.
"Yeah then you could slap all the other ones," Duncan grinned.
James shook his head, "whatever. So you've got three hundred for one, so what's six times six?"
Jessie walked into the room, "hey how's he doing?"
"We're still doing the first question," James replied.
"Thirty six right?" Duncan replied.
"Yeh good," James said. He wrote something on a bit of paper. "I trust the cow of a teacher told you how to add numbers this big."
"Yeah she did," Duncan said.
"Ok you add those two together and you'll get the answer. Try the second one on your own and I'll check it for you," James said.
"Ok," Duncan said. James gave him the pen, he started to write on the paper.
Jessie smiled, "you're quite the maths teacher still."
"Um yeah right," James muttered as he stood up. "Next time you're helping him."
"No way, you're the smart one," Jessie said.
"Since when?" James asked.
Jessie rolled her eyes, "whatever. I need to talk to you outside."
"Ok, Duncan I'll be right back," James said. He and Jessie headed outside.
Duncan pouted, "ok, seventy two times three, that teacher has to be fired."
James closed the door behind him, "I hope he doesn't call the teacher a cow in person."
"Well it's better than him insulting her," Jessie said, folding her arms.
"I only did that cos the teachers rudely interrupted arguments with other people," James muttered.
Jessie smiled, "they're supposed to do that remember."
"Yeah and they're supposed to put the ones who started it on detention," James said.
"Well it was always you insulting the teachers, you had it coming," Jessie said.
"Fine, is this what you wanted to talk about?" James asked.
"No, um I was thinking about moving to England. It wouldn't be a bad idea," Jessie replied.
"But what about your quarrel with Sarah?" James questioned.
"Well I was more concerned about it because if she knew we were married before moving in, she might not let us," Jessie replied.
"I don't get it, why would she be against us being married?" James muttered.
"Because in her perfect world we're brother and sister," Jessie replied.
"Is that it? This was your big quarrel?" James questioned.
Jessie narrowed her eyes, "there was more to it than that."
"Ok, sorry Jess," James said. He put his right arm around her and kissed her forehead.
Jessie smiled, "so, do you still want to move?"
"Well it would make things easier if we lived there. Of course we'd have to enrol Duncan at another school, and I'll have to arrange my break times to pick him up," James replied. "But if you have problems with Sarah, it's not going to work."
"I dunno maybe she'll be ok with it now, it was nearly thirteen years ago," Jessie said.
"I could visit her tomorrow and ask about moving, I'll find out if she's ok with it without you getting really involved," James said.
Jessie shook her head, "no don't do that. I appreciate it but no. Try and avoid telling her, I want to give her a shock."
"We're not trying to kill her, are we?" James asked slowly.
"No," Jessie sweetly replied. "She may not be over it and I don't want her mouthing off at you. I want to see her reaction for myself."
"All right, one question," James said.
"Ok what?" Jessie shrugged.
"Which primary school should we take Duncan too?" James asked.
"Uh I don't know, we should at least get him out of his current one," Jessie replied.
"I'll contact you after I find out if we're moving or not, you can get him out of that one and I'll find a decent primary school in the area. Is that fair?" James asked.
"Yep, just don't send him to that old run down school at East Stanley," Jessie replied.
"Jess, what makes you think that I hate Duncan?" James muttered.
Jessie smiled sweetly, "I'm sorry, it was just in case."
James nodded, "ok, should he still do his homework?"
"Well yes, just in case we don't move," James replied. He opened the door again, "I think we should keep him off tomorrow anyway."
"Good idea," Jessie said.
next day, Tantobie:
Matt headed towards the shuttle while keeping an eye on some of the workers. "You've got five minutes boys, hurry it up."
James dumped a few things in the skip, he started to follow Matt. "Can I talk to you?"
Matt sighed, "yeah fine, what is it Stuart?"
"Well there's a chance that I'm moving to England and... wait did you call me by my name?" James questioned.
"Yes I did. You did a good job yesterday," Matt replied.
"I did the same thing I do every day," James said.
"I mean with the little girl. The other guys would have freaked her out or just scared her," Matt said.
"Oh I see," James said.
"What did you want to talk about?" Matt asked.
"Well I may be moving to England, I'll be needing at least half a day off to do that, unless it's at the weekend," James replied.
Matt sighed, "I see, you are aware that this is a punishment not a job?"
"Yeah I am but I do need to move, and my wife's seven months pregnant. You know I could work for one day on a weekend to make up for it," James replied.
"Yes I suppose you could. When are you moving?" Matt asked.
"I don't know. I need to see if I can first," James replied.
"Ok, you will let me know when, when you find out," Matt said.
"I'll let you know when I come back to work, I'm going to find out during dinner," James said.
"Right, we'll discuss this further when you get back," Matt said.
"There are a few other things," James said.
"Ok," Matt muttered.
"Is it possible if I can rearrange my breaks. If I do move I'll need to pick up my son from school. I could just have one long break in the afternoon instead of the two short ones," James said.
Matt sighed, "very well, if Starfleet find out I'm doing this they won't be happy, but ok."
"Then there's no chance that you'll talk to the others?" James questioned.
Matt frowned, "about what?"
"Well usually I can put up with petty insults and stuff, but the guys are making it difficult for me to work with them," James replied.
"I see, you're used to hitting people who insult you?" Matt smirked.
James looked uncomfortable, "yeah exactly."
"Fine, I'll have a word with them on your day off. If you don't get one, I'll talk to them tomorrow," Matt said.
Stephen walked over to the two, "I hope you're not complaining about me."
"No I can put up with you," James said.
Stephen smiled, "cool, you still want that shuttle ride to Shield Row?"
"Well yeah, I only asked you an hour ago," James replied.
"I know, just checking," Stephen grinned. He walked off.
"He didn't notice I was lying, did he?" James questioned. Matt smirked again, he walked off himself.
Stephen's shuttle landed in the middle of a quiet housing estate. Most of the houses were vandalised and empty, the ones that weren't empty were not damaged.
James and Stephen headed out of the shuttle, Stephen stopped just outside it. "Are you sure you don't want a lift back? It'll take a while to walk back, you'd have to detour around the crater, and that will add an extra ten minutes to your walk."
"Fine, ten to one?" James sighed. Stephen nodded his head. "Thanks, see you then."
Stephen headed back into the shuttle, the door closed behind him. James headed towards one of the undamaged houses, once he got there he knocked on the door. Not long later a middle aged woman answered it. She glanced at him looking suspicious, "yes, what can I do for you?"
"Uh well, wait you don't recognise me?" James stuttered.
"No but I rarely speak to men. Are you sure you got the right house?" the woman grumbled.
"Now I am," James muttered to himself. "I don't get why you don't recognise me."
"It's probably because we haven't met before," the woman said.
"We have, I guess it has been sixteen years," James said.
"Sixteen, hmm," the woman frowned. "Back then my two daughters weren't even married, the only male I knew was... No you're not him."
"Only two got married? I bet one was Ali, right?" James commented.
The woman stared at him in shock, "oh god, you can't be James."
"Well that's what my birth certificate says, so I've heard. Too bad I don't have it," James said.
The woman smiled, still in shock, "my goodness, you've changed since I last saw you."
"I wish I knew that earlier," James muttered.
The woman, for goodness sake let's call her Sarah, got out of the way of the door, "come on in."
Jessie walked down the stairs looking like she had just gotten out of bed. She heard a loud knock on the door, she groaned while picking up some speed, not much though. Eventually she reached the door and opened it. "Lena, do you have any idea what time it is!?"
Lena shrugged, "twelve." She walked into the house, "you know you're supposed to get out of bed while it's still morning."
Jessie closed the door, "it is morning here."
"Huh?" Lena muttered. It then hit her, "oh right, Indiana's five hours behind us. Sorry."
"I guess it doesn't matter, I'll have to get used to your timezone anyway," Jessie grumbled, heading for the living room.
Lena followed her, "oh are you moving?"
"Maybe, it depends whether we're allowed to move into our old family home," Jessie replied. She sat down on the sofa.
"Oh, ok that narrows it down to the ones in Durham and old Manchester. I wouldn't recommend the second one," Lena said.
"Believe me, if I didn't have kids I'd be already living there," Jessie muttered.
"Durham's not that bad, is it?" Lena questioned as she sat down next to her.
"No, the place is great, mostly, it's the last remaining family member in the house," Jessie replied.
"Oh yeah, she kicked you out of it, didn't she?" Lena said.
"Kinda, I knew she would so in a way I kicked myself out, I was looking for a way to escape for years," Jessie said.
Lena looked confused, "but in your story you said you moved cos you had no choice."
"I also said that James' first words to me were something like 'what is this school like'. I think that was it. Oh and I also said that once James was in Manchester I was on my own," Jessie said.
"Oh yeah, Danny. Didn't notice that," Lena said.
"She moved there before I did, but I still put up with her for a while," Jessie said.
"So what were James' first words to you?" Lena asked.
Jessie quietly laughed, "if I tell you, you'll never leave him alone about it. I don't hate him."
"Hey, I wouldn't. He was about four so I wouldn't," Lena said innocently. Jessie glanced at her with a raised eyebrow. "Depends what it is."
"You can ask him yourself. What I said he said in the story, that was the third thing he said to me," Jessie said.
Lena started to laugh, "oh, so does that mean you were lying about stabbing that girl?"
"Nope," Jessie replied.
Lena stopped laughing, "oh wow."
"The whole fight was accurate Lena. It may seem bad to you but you've got to understand, I was bullied for about two years non stop. I did give them the silence treatment for that long you know," Jessie said.
"Ok ok, I did think that part was pretty cool," Lena said.
"Good," Jessie sighed, she sat back.
"So, what are you doing this weekend?" Lena asked.
"James promised we'd go out somewhere, the whole family. Well you know, the four of us," Jessie replied.
Lena glanced down at her hands, "oh right."
"I'm sure he wouldn't mind if you came too," Jessie said.
"No it's not that, we just need help in Manchester," Lena said.
"Oh. We're hoping to move as soon as possible. Once we're in England I'd imagine he'd be off to Manchester with you some nights," Jessie said.
Lena nodded, "yeah but how soon? We think there's a nest somewhere, not one of us is familiar enough with the city and it's huge. James used to live there so he would know."
"Hmm really, when I talked to him the one time while we were separated, he mentioned he kept getting lost," Jessie said.
"Ugh typical," Lena groaned.
"Well after that he was there for another six years, he probably stopped getting lost after I left," Jessie said.
"Let's hope so, or he'll be just an extra person to cover a part of the city," Lena muttered.
Sarah walked into a large living room holding two cups, she handed one to James. "I hope this stuff doesn't have the same affect on you as it did when you were a kid."
"Uh why?" James questioned.
Sarah sat down next to him on the sofa. "Well I suppose I'm not going to give you an entire jar of the stuff. We're probably ok."
"I had an entire jar once?" James asked slowly.
Sarah tried to keep a straight face, "you were six or something, we had to take you to the doctor after two days to get sedatives."
James pouted angrily, "great, don't tell that to anyone else."
"Well a few of my friends know about it. I can promise not to tell them again if you want," Sarah said.
"Yes please," James muttered, he had a sip of the coffee.
"So, any big news I need to know?" Sarah questioned.
"You first. Which two got married?" James asked.
Sarah sighed, "Alison and Zoe. Zoe told me about Ali, we haven't talked for ages so I haven't met her husband. I know she has two sons though."
"I thought you would have banned them from getting married or something," James said.
Sarah rolled her eyes, "ohno, I just warned Zoe about it before she made a date for the wedding. Of course I haven't seen Ali for thirteen years."
"What about Trisha?" James asked.
"Ah, she followed my example and remained single. She's a member of Starfleet now you know," Sarah replied, smiling proudly.
"No I didn't know, that's good," James said.
Sarah looked uneasy, "I'm surprised those three were the first you asked about. I thought Jessie was your favourite."
"Uh yeah well um..." James stuttered, also looking uneasy. "You asked about me didn't you?"
Sarah frowned, "yes, yes I did."
"Well I am beating both Zoe and Ali, and was catching up with Trisha for a while," James said.
"You, Starfleet? Who'd have thought," Sarah said, giggling slightly.
"Thanks but Susy made me join the prep college. I joined the Marquis when she died, and ended up on Voyager," James muttered.
"Ah I see, that's why you haven't made contact until now," Sarah sighed. "You called your 'mum' Susy, I'm guessing you found out the truth about her."
"Yeah I did, but not that long ago," James replied.
"It came up a few times during the custody trials we kept having. Have you met your mother yet?" Sarah asked.
"She was Voyager's Captain," James replied.
"But I thought a Captain Janeway was in charge, your mother was Kathy Williams," Sarah said, looking confused.
"Fake name," James said.
"Oh that explains why it was difficult to get in contact with her," Sarah said.
"So how many Kathy Williams were bothered during those trials?" James asked.
Sarah rolled her eyes, "ok ok, probably a few. That doesn't matter, what I want to know about is the wife and kids. You said you were beating Zoe and Ali."
"Ok, well my wife's pregnant with our third child. We already have one son and one daughter," James said.
Sarah sighed, "oh that's another boy I'm going to have to get used to. Apart from being pregnant, what is the wife like?"
James looked rather uncomfortable, "um well..."
that day, Indiana:
"No I'm not watching that cheesy crap again!" Duncan snapped, he grabbed the remote off Sasha.
"But mummy said I could watch it," Sasha pouted.
"I don't care, I'm sick of that damn dog family singing about maths. I've done enough maths ok," Duncan grumbled. He used the remote to put Pokémon on.
"What's this?" Sasha asked as she watched the TV.
"Duh, it's Pokémon," Duncan rolled his eyes. A smile appeared on his face, "oh yeah, there's a lot of cute animals in it."
"Ooh," Sasha's eyes lit up. "Let's watch this." She sat down in front of the TV.
Duncan grinned, "heh I win." He sat down next to her.
Jessie walked into the room, "you two aren't fighting again are you?"
"No mum," they both replied.
"Must be hearing things," Jessie muttered, she went over to the sofa to sit down.
The door to the living room opened, James walked in. "I come bearing good and bad news."
Jessie climbed back onto her feet, "bad first."
"Sarah decided to make it harder for me to hide the fact that I'm married to you. Plus she hasn't changed a bit. She still hates men, her and Ali haven't made up yet and I doubt she'll be happy about us being married at all," James said.
Jessie groaned, "great. What's the good news?"
"Well since I had to lie to her we can move in tomorrow if we wanted to," James replied.
"That's the only good news?" Jessie questioned.
"Oh sorry, I managed to get half a day off plus I can pick up Duncan no problem from school," James replied.
Duncan groaned, "damn it."
James glanced over at him. "Oh I'm sorry," he muttered sarcastically.
Jessie shook her head, "don't take it personally, he was hoping that he wouldn't have to go to school."
"I doubt that would happen," James said. "Oh, Ali and Zoe got married."
"Really? How did their husbands avoid a brutal slaughtering from mummy dearest?" Jessie asked.
"Ali hasn't seen her in thirteen years and Zoe's husband, I don't know, maybe he's tough," James replied.
"Thirteen years ago? That's when I last saw her, I least I have an excuse," Jessie said.
"Yeah well," James said. "So, what do you think?"
"What makes you think she'll not be happy about us being married? It's not like you just asked her," Jessie asked.
"It maybe just me being paranoid but she seemed a bit uneasy every time she mentioned you," James replied.
Jessie groaned, "well that's just great." She sat back down on the sofa.
"Jess we should just move there. There's plenty of houses around our old place that's abandoned and run down, we can get a few people to fix one of them up. At least then we won't have to wait long for a new place," James said. "It's not really her business what we do now anyway, I've been separate from her since I was fourteen, and you were seventeen when you left."
Jessie rolled her eyes, "I know that, but she'll still give us a hard time. She might change her mind."
"She won't. She's agreed to it now, besides if she does we can go evil, kill her and take the house anyway," James said jokingly.
Jessie's eyes lit up, "ooh really?"
"No it was a joke," James replied.
"Don't get my hopes up like that again," Jessie pouted.
next day, Stephen's shuttle:
"I wish I'd thought this through," James muttered. He had Duncan on his knee, asleep.
Jessie yawned, "yeah, it would have been a good idea." She had Sasha on hers.
James carefully leaned over to press a few buttons on the console. "I should have booked the afternoon off, it still would have been early for you guys though."
"It's ok, we can get this over with quicker," Jessie sighed. "How did you convince Stephen to let you borrow his shuttle?"
"Convince? I didn't," James said.
Jessie groaned, "you didn't threaten him did you?"
"Not the usual way no," James replied.
"Fine, I'm too tired to be bothered," Jessie muttered.
The console started beeping, "getting ready to land now."
"Already?" Jessie said, yawning.
"Yeah, if you look to the right you'll see what's left of Tanfield and Tantobie," James said.
"Great," Jessie sarcastically said, she looked anyway.
The shuttle landed nearby the house again. Sarah was waiting outside the door, she headed towards the shuttle as the doors opened. James stepped out of it on his own. "You're early," Sarah commented.
"A little too early, the kids are asleep," James said.
Duncan followed him out of the shuttle, yawning, "why is it so bright here?"
"I told you, it's late morning here," James replied.
"Oh yeah," Duncan yawned.
"Ok Duncan while you're awake, this is Sarah," James said as he glanced over at Sarah.
She smiled, "hello there." She glanced back at James. "Did you just clone yourself?"
James frowned, "no."
"Well he looks a bit like you when you were eight," Sarah said.
"Don't insult my son like that," James grumbled.
Sarah laughed, "you haven't changed a bit."
"Can you make up your mind about that?" James muttered as he headed back into the shuttle. Sarah followed him shaking her head.
Jessie stood up holding Sasha, "I don't suppose you'll need a hand right?"
"No it's fine," James replied.
"That remains to be seen," Sarah muttered. James and Jessie turned to look at her.
****TO BE CONTINUED****
Previous Episode << >> Next Part