part One, Two.
Prompt(s): Beginning of Series 3: Sarah is the new girl in town, and she notices Connor's better qualities right away.
Becker appreciates Sarah's more disciplined approach to science... and other things.
note: the early drafts were more Sarah-centric…Connor took over in the rewrites.
Pairing/Characters: Connor Temple, Mary Tremayne, Sarah Page, Ditzy, Lacey, Mitts, O’Keefe, Cutter, Abraham Farr.
faint Connor/Sarah. Mentions of possible Connor/Mary in the past.
Spoilers: 3.01, 3.10, and gleanings of series 2.
Summary: Connor and Mary return from the past…to the British Museum in a world where Helen Cutter had never existed.
Notes: Timeline 1 – series 1. Timeline 2 – series 2 & 3. Timeline 3 – branching off from the s3 finale.
Creatures: Incognitum (Proboscidae), Pristichampsus (Crocodilia), Raptor (?).
Warnings: use of sharp prickly plants as weapons.
The Characters were created by, as follows: Connor & Sarah & Abby & Cutter & Leek (the show's creators & writers). Tanya Lacey (Reggietate). Dave "Ditzy" Owen (Fredbassett). Finn (Fredbassett). Mary Tremayne (Rodlox). Abraham Farr (Rodlox). "Mitts" (Rodlox). O'Keefe (Rodlox).
Disclaimer: I own none of the canon characters. I have asked permission of the OFCs’ owners to place the OFCs in this fic. I own my own OFCs, but am willing to share them.
‘That difference not only indicated that Siberian mammoths and the incognitum were separate species, it also led some anatomists to regard the latter as a flesh-eating monster.’ –April 2010 issue of Smithsonian magazine.
“Actually, I got a question,” Connor said after he is asked ‘more than a few things’ in his opinion…and after Mary is disarmed and placed under arrest, kept watch over by a few soldiers Connor doesn’t recognize. “Doctor Page?” Connor asks.
“Yes?” she asks.
“Why’d you say it looked like Ammut? Why not like Tawaret or like Sobek?”
Sarah was about to answer, when a new sound erupted through the halls and pipes of the Museum.
Sarah Page looked in the direction of the noise. “Was that an elephant?” she asked.
“Sounded like one,” Becker said. “Lacey, Finn, you two go check it out.” They nodded and complied.
“There weren’t elephants,” Connor said.
“Where’s that then ?” Ditzy asked.
“Here,” Connor said. “The last time – the first time this happened. There was just a Pristichampsus.”
“Just a Pristichampsus,” Becker repeated.
“Maybe this is level two, then, Temple,” Ditzy suggested.
“Maybe,” Connor said, finding that as good a theory as any so far. “Speaking of, I… wait. Where’s Lt Tremayne? I mean, not her,” pointing to Mary, “but there should be one right here.” Though there should also be one of me here too.
“Like you don’t know,” Ditzy said. I don’t like what she did, not one bit, Temple, but comments like that’re salt in it.
“I don’t,” Connor said. “Honest.”
Adding up that and the comment about the last time and first time, Tom said, “So, not so much Groundhog Day as Phillidelphia Experiment II?”
Connor nodded. This isn’t the reality I came from. A neighbor, maybe.
“Like what Dr Cutter said he experienced,” Duncan said.
Ditzy groaned. This means Connor’s going to be calling someone for months by the wrong name?
“You’re questioning her,” O’Keefe told Connor. “Right now, in one of Sir James’ queerer ideas of drama.”
“I told you no good could come of American telly crossing over,” Duncan said.
“Aye, you did.” To Connor, he asked, “So how’d you get here?”
“The ARC’s probably got a spare anomaly,” Ditzy said, hoping that that was the case, as the alternative seemed to be that they would have two Connors on their hands.
“It doesn’t,” Connor said. “Christine Johnson’s got one, though.” Seeing how the SFs were looking at him, “I didn’t use hers.” Not entirely, (anyway).
“Johnson?” Becker asked. “Ministry of Defense Johnson?”
Before Connor could do more than nod, Finn said over the radio, “They found us. Channel elephants, by the look of them.”
Pony-sized, Ditzy reckoned. “A herd?” he asked.
“Three adult males and – a baby?”
“Males? You sure?”
Lacey answered: “They’re leaking.”
“Out the foreheads and eyes,” Finn clarified.
“Musth,” Sarah said. “It makes them more aggressive.”
“That explains they’re charging now!” Lacey declared. “We’ll keep’em off your backsides til you’re ready.”
“Appreciate it,” Ditzy said.
Connor said, “Um, before I say anything else that’ll make everyone look at me funny, I have a question for Dr. Page.”
“Okay,” Sarah said cautiously, not sure what he was going to ask her.
“How do I get rid of a curse?” Connor asked.
“What sort of curse?” Sarah asked.
“Well, you told me that anybody who touches the Sun Cage is cursed.”
Everyone looked at O’Keefe, who snorted at the idea of curses.
“Oh…that,” Sarah said. I never told him that. “It’s not easy, but -”
“It’ll have to wait,” Becker said. “At least until we have the situation under control.”
“Can we go see the elephant now?” Duncan asked.
Ditzy chuckled. “I’ll keep an eye on these two,” he told Becker, referring to Mary and Connor.
Becker nodded, grateful – and glad that at least Ditzy didn’t think he was replacing the recently departed Captain Ryan.
Standing right outside the east bathrooms, “Nice of you to join us,” Lacey said to Becker, O’Keefe, Page, and Duncan.
“We were held up,” Becker said. Connor started to ramble about time loops and a sky raining glass. And after a call to the ARC, Becker had learned that Temple and Tremayne were still there. Lester wants answers. And so do I. “Where are the creatures?”
“Are they really elephants?” Dr Page asks.
“Why, is there an elephant god too?” O’Keefe asks.
“In Ancient Egypt, no.”
“They’re definitely elephants,” Lacey said. “With stumpy, pointy tusks, and an unusual end of the trunk, but definitely elephants.”
“We locked them in the Reading Room,” Finn said, pointing a thumb at the circular room in the center of the Museum. The circle that Becker had walked around to go from the Ancient Egyptian hall, to this bathroom entrance.
“That sounds foreboding,” Duncan said.
“So it’s not just me who thinks so?” Sarah asked.
“The situation is completely,” Lacey said, pointedly ignoring Duncan saying it with her. Unfortunately, before she could say ‘under control,’ the Reading Room door was torn asunder, a few bits of splinters even reaching them.
“See how expensive the good conspiracies are?” Duncan jokingly asked.
“Stuff it,” O’Keefe told him. To his fellow soldiers, “Does he ever shut up?”
“No,” Lacey said.
“Sure he does,” Finn said.
“When Duncan’s gone quiet, you know you’re in deep shite.”
While all that was happening; in the room with the Sun Cage, Connor was telling Ditzy all he, Connor Temple, knew. Everything about when he had first met Sarah and Abraham, the whole mess with Caroline and Leek and Helen - And how can they not know who Helen is? - and Eve and, yes, Christine of the MOD.
“It’s a nice story,” said the one Ditzy called ‘Mitts.’ “But how can we be sure you’re telling the whole truth?”
“Didn’t Becker already say I’m at the ARC right this very instant?” Connor asked.
“We’ve seen Leek double back in time.”
“I’m positive you’re you,” Tom said.
“Thanks, mate,” Connor said.
“What do you know that our Connor doesn’t?” Ditzy asked.
“He can shut down an anomaly,” Mary volunteered.
“This true?” Ditzy asked.
“Well go on.”
“Right,” Connor said to himself, standing up and looking around for the lamp he’d used last time around. Lifting it up, he asked, “Can you shoot it? Nonono!” Connor said, one hand out. “Not yet. Just a minute,” as he brought it to the Sun Cage and stuck the torch end in the anomaly. “Now,” he asked Ditzy. “Aim for the glass.”
Electricity arced through – in – about the anomaly.
The anomaly snapped shut.
“That’s familiar,” Connor said, looking at the pruned pole. Looking at Ditzy, “Do you believe us now?”
“Let’s say you bought yourself some credibility,” Ditzy said. “Anything else?”
“Not bad, Doctor,” Becker aid, looking at the now-dead incognitum before them.
“Thanks,” Sarah said. “It was nothing, really. You just have to know how elephants are put together.” Though she didn’t want to know how much it would cost to repair this audio station.
“Nothing? You’re definitely modest. That was quick thinking, very clever.”
You’re about to start tripping over yourself, Captain, Lacey thought.
Just then, Becker’s walkie-talkie went off. “Captain Becker?” Cutter said.
“Here, over,” Becker said.
“The Pristichampsus is on its way back to the Museum. Let it leave through the anomaly.”
Its coming back? Becker thought. This keeps getting better and better.
Ditzy returned to the end of the Sun Cage’s room where his fellow soldiers – and Duncan – were keeping an eye on Mary Tremayne. “I just had a word with our other guest,” Ditzy told her, taking a lean against one of the storage crates. “He confirms your story about Leek keeping him prisoner in other epochs.”
Mary said nothing, for there was nothing to add to that.
“He also mentioned that there was someone else back then. Man by the name of Quinn.”
“Not a policeman by the name of Danny Quinn, was he?” Mary asked. Just how lost did that man become, when he was chasing Helen?
“No, a different first name. Definitely a Quinn, though.”
“So, what will become of me?”
“We’ll return Mr Farr to when he comes from,” Ditzy said.
“Thank you,” Mary said.
“Aside from that, I don’t know.”
Duncan spoke up now, “In your favor, you kept records of everything Leek had you do.”
Mary groaned in fear of what was coming: “Typed, yes?” hoping that this was the case.
“Nope, that would’ve made a paper-pusher like Leek suspicious. No, you documented everything by hand.”
“No wonder I’m doomed.”
“Could be worse – you might’ve done it all in cursive.”
“Or code,” Ditzy added.
“That’s what I said,” Duncan said.
And on the other side of the room…
“I’ve got a question,” Connor said.
“Sure,” Mitts said.
“What do you think of Doctor Page?”
“Clever, wholesome, good diction, likes you, and has a steady job.”
“But doesn’t have the best of luck,” Tom said.
How did I not remember that? Connor wondered as he remembered him and Tom and Duncan reading about an archeological team – Dr Page among them – being banned from a country…that’d been four months before the gorgonopsid in the paper. I could’ve said something to her.
“Like you,” Mitts added.
‘Likes you’ Connor remembered from moments ago. Really? he asked himself. Then again, I wouldn’t have noticed it the last time around anyway. After the fiasco with Caroline, Connor had resolved not to be pulled in two directions ever again – so he had thereafter focused his attentions and efforts at Abby. “You think she’s seeing anyone?” Connor asked.
“Go for it,” Tom said, encouraging his mate.
“What about you and Tremayne?” Mitts asked. “Not the other you and the other her – the you and her here, I mean.”
“What’re you talking about?” Connor asked. “Her job’s to keep things from eating me. She doesn’t even like me.”
Tom was trying to work in his head how this mysterious ‘Helen’ person Connor kept talking about, was responsible for keeping Connor and Lt Tremayne from having a relationship – even a faux one. “Then go talk to Dr. Page. Maybe don’t ask for an autograph on the first date?”
“That sounds about right,” Connor agreed.
By the time Cutter and Abby returned to the British Museum, the littlest of the predatory pachyderms had died in a fall down the stairwell when it had tried to head up to the Human Origins exhibit.
But when those trunks caught a whiff of the returning crocodile, they focused their attentions on killing it.
The crocodilian flexibility of the Pristichampsus was working against the best efforts of the two remaining incognitums’ hunting strategies. One would distract it while the other would try to stamp the reptile – a strategy which likely work(s/ed) better with more participants on the trampling side. Given how the Pristichampsus keeps curling and lashing (out), it’s just as well the incognitums don’t stab with their tusks – they’d get snapped off like a sabertoothed cat who bit wrong.
In the end, the incognitums had won. The Pristichampsus lay dead and vanquished.
Mitts and Becker raised their rifles to finish what the Eocene croc had started: to kill the bleeding, crippled pachyderms.
“No!” Cutter said.
“Where do you suggest we send them, Professor?” Mitts asked.
“They belong in the…” trailing off when he realized the incognitums were feasting upon the Pristichampsus. “I don’t understand.”
“Wait til we tell you about your wife,” Mitts said, right before firing the few shots needed to end the trunked beasts.
My what? Cutter thought.
After they finished searching for the second anomaly…and never found where the incognitums had come through – and after Connor had told Cutter about how the Sun Cage could contain anomalies, they headed for the vans which would take them all back to the ARC.
“Just a moment,” Connor said to Duncan and the others, and walked over to where Sarah was looking at the van she was being asked to board. ‘Dr Page?”
Abby didn’t believe what she was seeing.
“Please, call me Sarah,” Sarah asked Connor.
“After they have you sign the Official Secrets Act,” Connor said, “would you like to… I can answer any questions you might have about all of this. If you’d like, I mean.”
“I’d like that,” Sarah said. Though I was starting to think you’d never ask. Thank you for proving me wrong.
Connor grinned happily, something Sarah joined him in.
“Oi, you lot, in the car,” Mitts barked at the two of them.
“I was starting to think they’d never get together,” Mary remarked.