|The Heroine and the Hatter
Author: ArdelliaBlade PM
Finally!" Yes, awesome line Hatter, but we wanted to know more. What happened next? A look at what might happen after Hatter finds himself in the world of the Oysters. Alice/HatterRated: Fiction T - English - Romance - Alice H. & Hatter - Chapters: 41 - Words: 56,053 - Reviews: 680 - Favs: 173 - Follows: 242 - Updated: 01-26-10 - Published: 12-17-09 - id: 5588403
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: Syfy owns everything that I want in this world. Alice is included in that list.
Softening the Blow
Alice was relieved. After a few hours in the saddle, her mother seemed to perk up. Carol started asking questions about the world around them, and Alice told her a more detailed version of what had happened during her time in Wonderland.
"This Queen isn't still around, is she?" asked Carol once Alice had finished her story.
Come to think of it, Jack never had actually told Alice what happened to his mother. Judging by what she had seen of Wonderland's legal system, she didn't want to venture a guess.
"I doubt it. Jack might be an idiot, but he isn't that stupid." She hoped that the former Queen was locked away in some small closet somewhere. Or better yet, in one of those damned boxes that Alice had fallen out of when being transported by the Scarab.
"I suppose I was a bit unfair to Hatter." It was nice to hear her mother admit that. In Alice's experience, her mother didn't admit when she was wrong, but blaming Hatter for Robert's death had been extreme. Alice knew her mother didn't usually jump to conclusions, which was probably the only reason that Alice could find it in herself to forgive Carol so quickly.
"You might want to tell Hatter that when we get back. He'll be happy to know that his future mother-in-law doesn't hate his guts." The words were out before Alice could stop them. She really needed to learn how to prevent herself from saying things when she didn't mean for people to hear them.
Carol's horse drew up beside Alice's. Apparently her mother had a bit more experience with the animals than Alice remembered from her few, childhood pony rides.
"You're engaged? Where's the ring?" The questions were predictable, and were definitely a nice change from her mother's earlier dislike of anything having to do with Hatter.
Alice blushed slightly, and hid her hand. There was no ring there to show off; Hatter hadn't even asked her yet. She didn't even know if Hatter even liked the idea of marriage. Some people didn't think it was necessary, but after seeing how her mother had felt about her father, Alice knew that marriage was something that she wanted in her future. She just had to convince Hatter that he wanted it too.
"Well, we haven't really talked about it. But, I don't think I'd be happy with anyone else. They wouldn't understand this." Alice gestured around her with one hand, careful to keep the other on the reins. No matter if Alice had good or bad memories of Wonderland, it was a place that was now part of her. She couldn't change that fact. A person who hadn't been to this world could never hope to understand her.
But of course, that wasn't the only reason that she was with Hatter. She let herself imagine briefly what it would be like to wake up next to him every morning. But the feel of her mother's questioning gaze quickly squashed that fantasy.
"I suppose that I can understand that." They didn't say anything more until they came to the Casino.
It was a ruin. Alice remembered how it had looked when it fell, but the damage looked even greater now. Collapsed buildings tended to settle, to break further in the days that followed a disaster, Alice knew that from living in New York.
Pieces of armor and old bones lay scattered about the lawns. It was all that remained of Charlie's army of Knights. Alice wondered why no one had come and gathered them up to give them some sort of final resting place. Their bodies deserved that much after what had happened to them in life and how they had been used in death.
Then her eyes went back to the building.
"He was shot. Mom, he died making sure that he corrected some of what he got wrong." Alice wasn't even sure that her father had completely remembered her before his death. She would never know exactly how much of his attempt to save them had been based on his sense of duty, and how much of it had been because he loved her.
Alice hadn't allowed herself to mourn properly after her father's death. She had thrown herself into working on things with Hatter. But now, as the two women knelt in the rubble, with only a Suit to watch over them, both of them were finally able to let go.
"What do you mean 'they've gone'?" asked Hatter, worry tingeing his voice. His hat was in his hands and the brim was getting slightly bent by the pressure that he was exerting on it. Duchess had met him at the doors of cROOKed with this little piece of news.
"Alice and Carol went through the Glass. I'm not exactly sure why, but neither of them looked happy." Duchess didn't look happy either. Her hands were once again in the defensive position over her belly, and Hatter wondered if she was thinking of the baby's father.
Hatter sighed with exasperation and shoved his hat back on his head.
"Why does she have to keep running off like this?" He knew the answer. When Alice had a plan, she followed it whole heartedly, it was kind of cute, in an it's-going-to-get-her-killed-someday type of way.
"Well, I guess you're in charge here then. I can't have them off gallivanting around Wonderland without someone to make sure they don't get into trouble." Even if he wasn't on speaking terms with Carol right now, he understood that there were dangers in Wonderland that neither of the women knew of.
The first thing that he was going to do when he got to the other side was get a gun. One never knew when they would come in handy when chasing down Alice on one of her adventures.
He looked around. It would be foolish to bring anyone else with him, even if he wouldn't mind having Hart and Fowler at his back during a fight.
"Everything's to go normally while I'm gone." He ordered, hoping that for once Duchess would obey.
She nodded, looking just as concerned as he felt.
"Just hurry up and find them. And, if you see Jack, tell him I expect some kind of support for this baby." Duchess's comment had the desired effect of lightening both their moods.
Hatter went into his office and closed the door, locking it behind him. The Looking Glass stood just where it always did, looking slightly foreboding despite all of his attempts to make it blend into the décor.
He stepped through the mirror, feeling the strange sensation of liquid glass sliding over his skin.
Ok. Alice, Hatter and Carol are all back in Wonderland, leaving Duchess to run cROOKed. I'm going to have to start doing Duchess point of view to keep us updated on what's happening in our world, while everyone else runs around.
I'm having way too much fun with this fic. Can't you tell?
I'm looking forward to hearing what you all have to say about this chapter.