Snapshots in the Life of a Time Traveller
Disclaimer: What you recognise from the TV show is obviously not mine. Anna is. Don't know what – or who – else I lay claim to yet.
A/N: I couldn't resist the pun. This is also one of the main reasons why I tossed this in the Torchwood category, so the people who read it will get the joke in the title.
Chapter Two: When Everything Changes (494 words)
Jack knew right away something wasn't right. Anna acted much more lethargic than he expected her to at this age, and her normal daring had all but disappeared. God, she still looked and acted like a teenage when she was this young, which six simple bracelets proved to be only twenty-five. It was back at the flat that he was temporarily calling home, after a failed attempt to draw her out of the foetal position on the bed with a promise of fresh strawberries, that he finally confronted her about it.
He sat down in the space between her head and thighs, directly in her line of sigh. She blinked herself out of space, then twisted her head to look up at his. "What's wrong, Anna?" She sighed, and he was surprised to see the last of the sun's rays glinting on the tracks silent tears had made down her cheeks.
"Three months ago," she started, her voice hitching a little. "Three months ago, my time, we got into this argument. And I – I ran," she admitted, tears falling freely now. "It was bloody stupid of me, but I did."
"Oh, Anna, I forgive you," Jack murmured, stroking her hair comfortingly.
"Of course you do," she answered with a perverse smile. "We haven't even had the bloody argument yet." She sighed, but didn't go on.
"Is that it?"
"No," she whispered, the tears running harder now. "I ran, and I ran to this bar, and I met this guy, and – Jack, I'm pregnant." The last three words she said in a rush before completely dissolving into tears. Jack turned and gathered her in his arms. As he rocked her gently to calm her down a bit, his mind calculated millions of possibilities. When she was no longer crying, he stopped planning Anna's future – and her child's – without her.
He kissed her forehead. Her eyes, which had drifted shut, sprung open. She gave him a half-hearted smile. "What do you want to do with it?" he asked.
"It?" She looked confused. "Oh, her."
"Her? You know it's a girl?" Anna gave a little smile and a slight nod.
"That was the second thing I found out. Oh no, I'm going to have to name her!" She sighed yet again. "I'm no good at choosing names.
"You're keeping it – her, then?" She nodded vigorously.
"Wouldn't dream of anything else. It's just..."
"This life – my life, anyway – isn't the sort of life that's meant for children." Jack nodded, knowing this better than Anna suspected.
"We have all of time and space at our disposal. She can grow up anywhere." Anna thought about this.
"The twenty-first century."
"I want her to grow up in the twenty-first century," she explained, thinking of how she'd always wished she could experience the history in the making. "When everything changes."
"Right," Jack said, thinking of all that the twenty-first century had been. "When everything changes."