Title: Coming through
Disclaimer: Neither the show nor the characters belong to me, they belong to ITV1. Nonetheless, I love to borrow them from time to time. The idea of the story as well as the story itself – including all possible pre- or sequels published afterwards – are mine.
Summary: This was a dream, it had to be. This wasn’t supposed to happen, not here, not to her, not like this. Yet, here she was, trapped in the Early Jurassic, surrounded by dinosaurs considering her as nothing but food.
Warnings: once again not beta-read
AN:Okay, it's late, and I'm honestly not sure about the language issue this time. But I promised to update, and usually, I'm keeping my promises. :)
Lester was drumming his fingers on his desk. After the Security Service had questioned him for almost two hours, he was now sitting around doing nothing, trapped in his office because the Security Service didn’t want him to ‘interfere’ with whatever it was they still had to do at his facility.
Looking at the ADD, he watched Connor and the man from Security Service working on the computers. It was strange, but even after two weeks he still saw Jess sitting in this chair turning to him to give him one of her radiant smiles whenever he looked at the ADD.
If she’d been here, the ADD would be up and running by now. Connor didn’t seem to be able to fix it – and the Security Agent wasn’t helping him one bit. Two hours, and they hadn’t been able to fix whatever glitch there was in the system. Or maybe they hadn’t really tried…
The alert had gone off indicating an anomaly in Jess Parker’s apartment. There was only one rational explanation for this, except for the glitch. He didn’t believe in the glitch, though. It was too much of a coincidence. They had reopened the anomaly to get Jess back – and Connor was here to cover up for them.
They should have been allowed to send a team in search for Jess right after she had disappeared through the anomaly. It shouldn’t have been two damn weeks. He should have covered up for them to help them get Jess back.
But he had known the Security Service would investigate Jess’ disappearance – and he had known the minister would never approve any attempt to search for her. If he’d allowed his team to reopen the anomaly at the ARC, the Security Agents would have prevented the mission by now.
He saw Connor discussing with the agent and frowned. They seemed to be close to solving the problem – and certainly causing another one.
“Connor, my office,” Lester called from the door. The he turned to the other man. “Don’t touch anything without his supervision! Go, get yourself a coffee.”
Swearing silently, Connor abandoned his work on the ADD and walked up to Lester’s office. It always made him feel a little like being called to the headmaster. “Sir?” he asked carefully as he entered the room.
“Close the door,” Lester said.
Connor did as he was told. He watched the Security Service guys walk through the ADD supervising the repair.
“So, you reopened the anomaly leading back to the Early Jurassic in Jess’ apartment,” he stated rather than asked.
Connor didn’t blink. He wasn’t sure what to reply to that, anyway.
“I take it at first only you, Abby and Becker were in,” Lester continued. “Becker went through the anomaly to search for Jess, and for your sake I hope Abby stayed behind to lock the damn thing and make sure nothing comes through except for people belonging to this time.”
Lester looked at the ADD, then back at Connor. “And your task was to disable the detection system so that no one found out about the anomaly,” he finished.
Connor swallowed, still refusing to answer his boss’ questions.
Raising an eyebrow at him, Lester asked, “Did I leave anything out?”
Weighing his options, Connor decided to go with the truth. It would be hard to explain to him how Jess came back if they didn’t tell him. If she came back, that was.
“You rebuild the prototype to open the anomaly?” Lester offered when Connor kept refusing to say anything.
Connor nodded slowly.
“So, the reason why there was a locking device and an EMD missing was because you took them to Jess’ apartment,” Lester went on.
Again, Connor nodded in response. Realising that he was about to turn Abby and Becker in, he quickly said, “But it was entirely my idea, really.”
Lester raised an eyebrow at him. “And you forced Becker to join in,” he said. “How exactly did you manage to do that? Did you kidnap his favourite weapon and threatened to dismantle it if he didn’t join in?”
Connor opened his mouth to reply, but honestly couldn’t think of a credible explanation.
“You’re all in,” Lester said. “I’m rather sure also Matt and Emily are by now, even if they didn’t know about it at first. Cling together, swing together.”
The comment made Connor swallow again. They were all going to get fired, he was sure they were. But if Jess was back, it was worth it.
“Why weren’t they involved anyway?” Lester questioned, eying Connor up.
“Well… The less people know the littler the risk,” Connor replied. “Besides, we all knew we were risking our jobs.” He swallowed again. He shouldn’t have said that.
“You’re downright stupid,” Lester told him. “No, wait, I’m rather sure it was Becker’s brilliant idea to go through the anomaly alone.”
Connor nodded once again. Sometimes, it really scared him how well Lester seemed to know all of them. Maybe he was a mind reader – or he had bugged their apartments. More likely.
“So, how much longer will the ADD be out of work?” Lester wanted to know.
Checking his watch, Connor said, “I gave them two hours to leave the anomaly open. I wasn’t sure the prototype would work much longer. The time is up in two minutes.”
Lester looked at his watch and then sighed. How was he supposed to come up with a credible explanation for Jess’ return – if she returned.
“I hope for all your jobs’ sake that Becker will bring her back,” Lester told him. “Now, I want you to go back down there, fix the ADD when it’s time and then you’ll drive me to Jess’ apartment so I can give all of you a piece of my mind about this.”
Connor swallowed again, and then nodded. This certainly wasn’t going to end well, for none of them. Well, except for Jess, maybe. Technically, she wasn’t involved in this. There was no way she could have known what they’d been up to. Besides, Lester seemed to like her.
He couldn’t help but wonder if Lester would really fire them, or maybe just force them to leave for a couple of days, or weeks… or maybe months?
“What are you waiting for?” Lester asked annoyed when Connor didn’t stir. “I didn’t fire you yet. So I suppose I just gave you a direct order. Chop, chop!”
“Yes, Sir,” Connor said, bowing out. He couldn’t escape the feeling that his boss had just bought them a little more time.
He went back to fixing the computer system, all the time feeling Lester’s gaze in his back.
Connor’s watch beeped, and he turned to look at his boss. With a quick nod he went back to work, this time really trying to fix the glitch in the ADD. He just hoped that everything would go well.
At the same time, the alert on Abby’s watch finally went off as well, and she unlocked the anomaly immediately.
They were standing in front of the entity of flying crystals, waiting for something – or hopefully somebody – to come through. Matt was flanked by Abby and Emily, all of them holding an EMD ready to shoot if what came through was another raptor.
But there was nothing.
Abby’s heart started to beat faster. They weren’t coming through. Something was wrong. She should go through to help them.
“How long can you keep it open?” Matt asked, the tension clearly audible in his voice.
“To be honest, I have no idea,” Abby replied. “Not even Connor was sure how long this thing would work.”
“We should go through,” Emily stated. “Maybe they need help.”
“No one’s going through an anomaly,” Matt grumbled.
“Oh, save it!” she almost shouted at him. “You went through, Abby went through, Becker went through… We don’t leave anyone behind, do we?”
“We’ll wait another five minutes,” Matt stated. “Then I’ll go through.”
“Oh, no, you’re not pulling that one on me again,” she said, snorting slightly. “We’re both going through, period.”
“Guys, could you postpone your fight until after they’re back?” Abby asked with a sigh.
The anomaly flickered dangerously.
“That’s enough, I’m going through,” Emily stated, already stepping forward.
“Give them another minute,” Matt said, holding her back by blocking her way with his EMD.
“But…” Emily wanted to argue.
“We don’t know what’s going on at the other side,” he said. As much as he wanted to go through and get both Jess and Becker back, he knew that if he went through Emily would follow him – and he couldn’t risk that.
For a few seconds that seemed like days, they were standing in Jess’ apartment staring at the open anomaly. It flickered again, and all of them raised their EMDs. But once again nothing was coming through.
“How long?” Matt wanted to know.
“Two minutes, fifty-four seconds,” Abby told him.
“Damn it, Becker, what’s taking you so long,” Matt grumbled.
“Matt,” Emily said, the tone in her voice speaking volumes to him.
He swore silently. “I know.”
The anomaly flickered again.
“It’s getting unstable,” Abby told them. “I’m not sure how long it will remain open.”
“You stay here,” Matt told the two women. “I’ll go through and bring them back.”
“Matt…” Emily tried once more.
“I’m going alone,” he insisted. “That’s not debatable.”
“Wait, there’s something coming through,” Abby shouted.
Only a second later two figures came more or less flying through the anomaly.
Becker landed hard on his back, having Jess caught protectively in his arms. “Shut it down, shut it down!” he shouted.
He rolled them both to the side over the floor, escaping the upcoming attack and covering Jess’ body protectively with his.
Two raptors were jumping through the anomaly, but the surges from Emily and Matt’s EMD tossed them back to their own time. Only a second later the anomaly disappeared as Abby switched off Connor’s prototype.
Emily’s eyes widened at the sight in front of her. Jess’ face was buried in Becker’s chest. They were both breathing heavily, and the signs of the recent fight were clearly visible on their bodies.
“What on earth took you so long?” Matt asked with a grin as he reached down to help his two colleagues up.
“We need the medics,” Becker told them ignoring the comment. “Jess’ ankle is inflamed.”
“I’m fine,” she objected, as he let Matt help her to her feet. She hissed when she tried to put weight on her wounded ankle, though. Looking at the faces of her three friends staring at her in relief and disbelief, she smiled, adding, “I just really need a bath.”
Abby was the first to step forward, throwing her arms around Jess. “You survived,” she whispered. “I knew you would make it.”
“I learned from the best, I guess,” she replied with a smile.
Grinning, Emily told her, “I always knew you were going to be back.” She stepped forward to hug Jess as well.
“I’ll run you a bath,” Becker offered, not even waiting for her approval before he scooped her up in his arms.
“I can walk on my own,” she protested.
“You shouldn’t put too much weight on your ankle,” he told her, looking at Matt again. “Call the medics, will you?”
“Already done,” he said with a grin as he watched Becker carry the still protesting Jess into her bathroom. As a matter of fact, she didn’t seem to mind Becker carrying her as much as she pretended to.
Becker gently let her down to lean against the sink while he turned on the water and searched for a bath additive. He opted for vanilla, checked the temperature, and then turned to smile at Jess. “Um… do you need any help getting into the tub?”
“No,” she near enough shouted, and then blushed. “I mean… I…”
Realising how his question must have sounded to her, Becker hurried to explain, “Oh, no, I didn’t mean… I… I just wanted to know if you want me to call Abby or Emily to help you.”
“Oh,” Jess said, blushing even more. “No, thanks, I… I’ll be fine.”
He nodded, slowly bowing out of the bathroom. He knew he needed to give her some private time, but every ounce of him refused to leave her side.
“You know, there’s a smaller bathroom at the end of the corridor,” she mumbled. “In case you… want to take a shower.”
Nodding, he mumbled a thanks and – giving her a smile – closed the door behind him. He opened it again only a second later. “Um… I’ll tell Abby to get you some fresh clothes.”
“Thanks,” she replied with a smile.
Sighing, Jess got rid of her dirty clothes. Examining them, she unwillingly decided to throw them away. They weren’t only covered with dirt, after their recent fight to get back home, they were completely ripped.
Smiling, she let herself sink into the hot bath. It felt like heaven to be able to take a proper bath again. Her ankle hurt pretty badly, but she ignored the pain, wanting to clean the wound at least a little.
There was a gentle knock on the door before Abby stepped in. “Here’s your fresh clothes,” she said with a smile, carefully placing them on the cabinet. “I bet you don’t mind a short skirt.”
Jess turned her head to glare at her. “Thanks,” she mumbled.
Grinning, Abby sat down at the rim of the bathtub. “Is there anything else you need – except for a certain army captain to wash your back?”
No matter how hard she fought it, Jess wasn’t able to stop the flush from spreading over her neck and cheeks. “Stop it,” she mumbled.
Abby sighed. “You know why he went after you, don’t you?” She didn’t wait for Jess’ answer. She just left.
However, Abby couldn’t help but turn in the doorway. “I’ll send him over.”
“Don’t you dare,” Jess exclaimed, and it was only her bad ankle that kept her from immediately jumping out of the bathtub.
Abby giggled, and then closed the door behind her.