Hi! So, this is my current fanfiction. The idea kind of popped into my head ready made, and I just developed the details and polished it up a bit. A huge thanks to Kelly/Bolly Keggs, who I discussed every plot idea with, Sian, who was enthusiastic and impatient, and Evie, for being a Wise Old Owl (lol) Lena x

Dust To Dust

Prologue

"Gene!" Alex screamed at the top of her lungs. Harper laughed, and pushed her closer to the edge of the building. Across the asphalt, her boss and partner, DCI Gene Hunt, held up both his hands in mock defeat. She knew him well enough to know that he was calculating a plan. He took a cautious step forwards, and Harper shoved her again. She whimpered. Remembering her psychology training, she tried desperately to reason with him: "I can see you've had a lot of troubles… maybe we could talk about it?" she asked. His only reply was a swift cuff across the cheek. Gene delved into his pocket and drew his pistol, which he aimed at Harper's head with a barely-trembling hand. Alex was impressed – she wished she had the same level of self-control. "OK sunshine," Gene spat. "Here's how this works. You let go of DI Drake here, I put the cuffs on, and we all go home – or in your case, a police cell."

Harper laughed, and Alex felt his hand go into her pocket. She resisted the urge to kick, and a second later, she felt a pistol pressed against her spine. "Gene!" she shouted again, not as loudly this time, and she could see the pain on his face when she said his name. She knew that he knew that they might not both get out of this alive. Harper laughed again, and raising the pistol, he pressed it to Alex's temple. She could just about see it if she squinted sideways.

Gene couldn't ignore such a visible threat to Alex's life, and taking careful aim, he let loose a single shot, which slammed into Harper's shoulder. He swore, and let her go. "Run, Bolls!" Gene shouted, but Alex couldn't move. Her legs were frozen, her torso facing the drop before her. There were more shots behind her, and she heard them clanging off the metal air vents and slicing into the red brick walls. Something dimly registered in her sub-conscious about ricochets, but before she could crouch down, or even protect her head, she felt something thud into her back.

She knew it was a bullet immediately. In normal circumstances, she could have taken the hit, and remained standing. Maybe staggered a little, but overall, she would have been fine. Instead, with a precipitous drop before her, she staggered a single step – in the wrong direction. As she lurched over the edge, she heard Gene scream her name behind her, and desperately, she tried to find a handhold. She needed to see him once more. She needed to tell him she loved him. She needed…

And then she hit the ground, and the only thing she needed, the only thing she wanted, was death.

Assuming Alex

My alarm rang loudly, cutting through the soft, shadowy world of my dreams. "Bolls?" my dad's voice echoed through from the kitchen. "Kettle's on. Going down to the station, you can get yourself off to school OK?"

I murmured an agreement. It seemed to satisfy Dad, who stomped towards the front door. I heard a contemptuous sniff, and I knew he was checking his reflection in the mirror. He'd been endlessly paranoid about looking older since Mum disappeared, way back when I was a tiny baby. I was just dragging my legs out of bed when he shouted again.

"You might want to come down to the station later. Got something planned, for your birthday…"

Crap. I'd forgotten that. The tears welled automatically as I counted silently. My fifteenth birthday without Mum. I sniffed, and Dad realised that now, although I was fifteen, and, in his eyes, "a big, grown-up girl" I was still going to go through the same event that happened every birthday, every Christmas, and worse still, every Mother's Day. He pushed open my bedroom door, and sat next to me awkwardly. He reached out and sort of half-opened his arms, and I leant into them and cried.

A full fifteen minutes later, and I was washed and dressed. The last wheezes from the Quattro had faded into the distance ten minutes ago, and I was applying makeup using the bathroom mirror. I sensed something – or someone – behind me, but spinning sharply on my heel, there was no-one there. Spinning back to the mirror, I noted with irritation the mascara smudged across my cheek, and sighing, knelt down and rubbed the corner of the flannel across it. Standing up, I was bemused to find the mirror steamed up, and wiping my jumper sleeve across it, I bit down on my lip, hard.

Stood behind my reflection was my mother. She looked nothing like the photos I had seen of her, for one thing her hair was scraped back into a sensible bun, and she was wearing a suit, but I knew it was her nonetheless. She looked confused – until she saw me. Her eyes lit up, and she smiled – a smile I was so familiar with, although I could not properly remember it.

"I'm so proud of you," she whispered. "Tell Gene I'll see him soon."

With that, her eyes filled with tears, and the mirror steamed up again. When it cleared, she was gone, and my reflection was alone once more. I screamed in frustration. Furiously, I slammed my fist into the glass, sending an intricate web of cracks running across its surface. Pulling my hand away, I noted with grim satisfaction that my hand was studded with shards of broken mirror, but my triumphant grin turned to a grimace as the pain hit.

Cradling my bleeding hand, I jogged to the kitchen, stumbling over a discarded pair of shoes in the hallway as I went. Automatically, I flung out my injured hand to steady myself, then screamed as it hit the wall, leaving a bloody handprint on the white paint.

Finally reaching the kitchen, I stuck my hand under the cold tap, wrenching it on so hard the aged metal creaked in protest.

The cold water felt good on the gashes in my hand. Several smaller pieces of glass clattered into the sink, and wrapping my good hand in my jumper, I poked them gingerly down the plughole. Gritting my teeth, I readied myself for what was coming next, before yanking out the largest shard of glass – a good 3 inches long – in one swift movement.

The pain was excruciating. A fresh flow of blood poured into the sink, and I screamed again. As I looked at the piece in fascination, there was a flash of hazel and blue that I knew was an eye – but not my own.

Wiping the blood from the end of the piece with my jumper, I saw the other eye, and I knew who it was immediately. "Mum?" I whispered, and the eyes crinkled. I realised she was smiling, and I smiled too. The mirror shard fogged up, and I panicked.

"Don't go! When? When will I see you?" I whispered desperately, but before I could do anything, an "S" had appeared in the steam. I grasped the concept immediately, and waited patiently until the word "SOON" had appeared.

No sooner had I read it than the mirror was clear of steam. Suddenly, I could see all of my mother's face. She was mouthing something, and, concentrated, I realised it was the same three sentences, over and over: "I love you. So proud of you. I'll see your father soon."

And then I was alone again.

The phone rung, loud and long, breaking my trance only slightly. It took me a minute to realise I should answer it, and by then it had stopped. Sighing, I continued pulling out pieces of glass, before ripping a long strip off of the tea towel with my teeth and wrapping it tightly around my hand. I repeated this procedure until there was no tea towel left to rip, and my hand was only a few sizes smaller than a boxing glove. Then I went into the lounge and took down the red box that had sat on the top shelf of the bookcase for as long as I could remember.

The box was lighter than I remembered, or maybe I was getting stronger. I sat in the centre of the carpet, and spread the photographs out in concentric circles around me. They shared a common subject matter. My mother, DI Alex Drake.

She was smiling, laughing, thinking, talking, working, eating, drinking, sleeping, holding me, with my father, with Chris, with Ray, with Shaz. My hand went straight to my favourite. She was stood with my father, wearing the red off-the-shoulder top that appeared in many of the photos. She had on tight blue skinny jeans, tucked into white leather boots, and her famous white leather jacket. She was looking straight at the camera, and smiling, and she seemed to be looking right at me. Taking it carefully in my good hand, I went to the door in the house that was never opened, the door to the room I could not remember, as I had not been inside it since my mother disappeared.

It led to my mother's bedroom, and it was, of course, locked. The simple lock was not an obstacle, and raising a single hand to my head, I pulled a pin from my hair and inserted it into the keyhole. A twist to the right, then to the left, and I was in.

It smelt wonderful. Two walls were red, and two were white, with neither colour touching a wall of the same colour. The furniture was black, to match the woodwork. There was a mirror with a white mosaic frame which I loved instantly, and a black egg chair with a white fluffy cushion on it. On one wall was a huge floor-to-ceiling mirror, with pictures held in place around the edge by little blobs of Blu-Tack. The huge bed was neatly made with a psychedelically swirled black-and-white design, and picking up the pillow, I lifted it to my face and sniffed. It smelt wonderful, of flowers, and wine, and slightly of ink.

Carefully, I placed the pillow back on the bed and slowly moved over to the dressing table. There was a single bottle of perfume resting on the top, and I smiled as I read the name: Kismet. She lived and breathed the force – in every sense of the expression. Spraying a little onto my wrist, I found it smelt of flowers and wine – the same smell as her pillow, without the ink.

Placing the bottle carefully back on the shelf, I turned my attention to the wardrobe in one corner. Pulling it open was incredible. Hung neatly in front of me were the clothes I had only ever seen in pictures: brightly coloured off-the-shoulder tops, silk blouses, scarves, and, at one end, the famous leather jacket. Reaching out a tentative finger, I stroked the soft leather reverently.

I pulled out the top I loved best, the one in the photo I held in my good hand. Slipping off my slightly bloodstained jumper, and wriggling out of my school blouse, I slipped the top over my head.

It was a perfect fit. Carefully, I slid the left shoulder off, so I was wearing it like Mum had, and looked at myself in the mirror. I didn't look right wearing my school skirt, so delving in the drawer under the wardrobe, I found a pair of dark blue skinny jeans and pulled them on, carefully folding my skirt and blouse and placing them on the chair. There were necklaces hanging on a rack above the dressing table, and I picked out a black one.

Next to the bed was a shoe rack, with several pairs of boots and a couple of pairs of heels arranged by colour on it. Taking the white ones, I carefully slid my feet into them, holding my breath as I did so. They fit perfectly, and I smiled as I tucked the jeans inside. Straightening up, I realised something was still wrong. Then I realised. The eyes. She always wore eye makeup, heavy blue eyeshadow, no matter where she was going. Running gingerly back to my room, I rummaged through my makeup bag until I found the right shade.

Returning to Mum's room, I carefully applied the eyeshadow, top and bottom lash lines, and a swirl on the outside of the eye. Turning, I walked towards the wardrobe, carefully sliding the jacket off its hanger and slipping it on. Wearing it, I felt like a different person.

I felt like my mother, and striding over to the mirror with my eyes closed, I posed before looking at myself. Placing one hand on my hip, I tossed my head back over my shoulder and opened my eyes.

I gasped in shock. Staring back at me was Mum. I knew it was me deep down inside, but at the same time, I was no longer me. I was DI Alex Drake, and I was powerful.

Returning to the lounge, I sat in the centre of the photographs once more, my back to the door, a smile caressing my lips. I wasn't Lena Alex Hunt any more. I wasn't that girl whose mum disappeared, or the guv's daughter. I was Alex Drake, smart, sophisticated and sassy. The feeling was incredible, and I laughed out loud. The sound echoed in the empty flat, reminding me of the day's events so far, and it was at that point that my brain finally reacted rationally to the day's events.

And that was when the tears started flowing. And once I had started, I couldn't stop.

"Police! Open up!" my father's voice failed to cut through my reverie. My vaguely sarcastic subconscious told me it was a slightly unnecessary comment, as he blatantly had a key.

A few seconds later, I heard the door open and a single pair of footsteps entered the flat. Good – he was alone.

The lounge was the last door in the hallway, and I could hear him going from room to room, calling.

"Bolls? Lay?" there was a pause, and I realised, dimly, that he had seen the handprint. The volume of the shouting cranked up a notch. "LENA?" There was a brief tinkling noise, and I remembered the bloody glass in the basin. I still didn't move. It was like I'd forgotten how.

"Lena? Please, God, you miserable bastard, let her be in here." And with that the door slammed open, Dad ran inside… and froze. As the photographs flapped in the breeze, I remained immobile.

"Alex? Alex, is it really you?" he whispered, and I realised with a jolt that he thought I was my mother. With my back to him, all he could see was a mane of curly hair and a white leather jacket.

"Alex? Talk to me, Bolls! Why are you here? Where's Lena?" he asked.

Finally, my body unfroze, and I turned to look at him, my face a mask of tears and streaky blue eyeshadow. I acknowledged his presence with a single word: "Dad."

And then he hit me. It was the first time he had struck me, and I remember seeing his hand coming towards me in slow motion. He hit me, hard, on the left cheek, bruising my skin and awakening me from my trance.

I stared up at him in shock, expecting to see the same expression on his face. Instead, I was confronted with a look of utter hatred, an expression I had only ever seen before when he talked about mass murderers and bank robbers. When he spoke, his voice was a harsh snarl: "Take it off. All of it. Put it back."

I shook my head almost invisibly. "No." I whispered. "No, I won't."

"What?" he asked, incredulous.

"I said no. She's coming back. I know it." I repeated.

"Listen. She is not coming back. She left you. She went back to the future, where she came from. She went back to Molly, her other daughter, and her life as a psychiatrist." He paused to draw breath. I didn't dare contradict him. "She didn't want you."

"No," I whispered. "That's not true –"

"Yes it is, Lena." I hated the way he sneered my name. "She never wanted you, and I never wanted you either. You were an accident!"

I was too shocked to speak, and the fight seemed to have gone out of my father. In that instant, my entire view of my mother changed completely. She went from being my role model, someone to miss, to admire, to yearn for, to a person I loathed. The image I held in my head changed from a smart woman dressed in a neat blouse and pressed trousers, sipping wine elegantly, to a drunken woman falling off her barstool, and my father picking her up, kissing her drunkenly, before lurching away with her tucked under his arm.

In that instant, I hated my mother.

"I hate her!" I snarled, "I hate her so much! I'll kill her –" I never finished that sentence, because my father lashed out again, catching the same cheek with his left hand. The stone from his ring slashed at my skin, and the pain was awful. As I toppled to the floor, almost unconscious, he walked towards the kitchen and whispered:

"No you don't, Bolls. Not really."

Vision Of Violence

The vision came from nowhere. One second I was driving along South Bank, minding my own business, and the next, I was in a dark sitting room, staring at myself lying on the floor, immobile, clutching one side of my face with a bandaged hand. I saw Gene walking away from me, and I heard him whisper something to the injured me that I couldn't quite catch, but I got the word "Bolls."

It was at that instant my car smashed through the wall at the side of the road and into the icy water of the Thames.

I never regained consciousness in the future, instead I awoke in 1999.

I realised that the so-called "me" lying prone on the floor was Lena. And I realised what had happened.

"Gene." I spoke only one word, but he turned around instantly. His face registered surprise, confusion and love before his eyes went to Lena, and his face emptied of all emotion. He opened his mouth to speak, but before he could do so I cut in on top of him. "Gene, you really shouldn't have done that."

And with that, I went to my daughter's side and stared down at her beautiful face, so like me, and yet so unique. She looked peaceful, lying there with her eyes closed. Like she was asleep. I couldn't bring myself to touch her, content as I was to simply look at her.

Triggering Truth

As I lay, bleeding carefully onto my bandaged hand, desperate not to enrage my father any further, there was a slight disturbance in the air behind me, and a split-second later, I heard a cut-glass voice say my father's name. He made no response to what she said, and I realised that whoever this person was, my father was in awe of her.

My father came over to me, and knelt on my left. I squeezed my eyes tight shut, and I sensed his hand coming towards me rather than saw it. Flinching away instinctively, I felt something behind me, preventing me from cowering away from my father. Sighing inwardly, I snapped my opens open…

…And for the first time since I was a tiny baby, I stared into the hazel, intelligent eyes of my mother – in the flesh at last. I was amazed, and felt a rush of warm love inside me. Staring around, I caught sight of my father's worried face, and I remembered my hatred.

Screaming, I sat up perfectly straight, and lunging towards my father, I had shoved my hand into his pocket, drawn out his pistol, cocked it, and levelled it at Alex's – I couldn't bring myself to call her Mum – head. "I hate you!" I screamed. "You left me! You went back to Molly, back to the future, and left me here alone. Oh, yes, I know you didn't want me. I know that I was an accident. I hate you! I bloody hate you!" I kept my aim steady, but my hand trembled.

She smiled at me, and I felt my resolve wavering. "You won't shoot me," she whispered. "You could…" she tailed off as she realised what I had said. I pressed the gun closer to her temple, but she continued to reason with me, as calmly as she could: "You won't shoot me, Lena, and the reason that you won't shoot me is that you know that what your father said wasn't true, and you know that we both wanted – and indeed still want you – very much. You want the truth, and for that reason, you won't shoot me."

I knew she had a point, and throwing the gun onto the sofa, where it went off with a loud bang! I fell into my mother's arms, a place that felt both achingly familiar and inexplicably alien.

I could feel her hands rubbing soothing circles on my back, and stroking my hair. She was leant over me protectively, and I was half on, half off her lap. She shifted slightly, and it took a second for me to realise that she was trying to position herself between my father and me. Closing my eyes, I leant into her, and she placed one hand on my good cheek and whispered: "It's OK, sweetheart. It's OK. I'm here. You're safe."

At some point, my father left, and I heard the sound of the Quattro driving away – muffled somewhat by my mother's arms.

Gradually, my tears stopped, and both Mum and I began to look around and at each other properly. The first thing that she noticed was not the circles of photographs, not the bad décor, not even the framed photograph of her and my father on the wall. She didn't comment on the streaked eyeshadow, or the blood on my cheek, or my bandaged hand. Grasping me by the shoulders, sitting me up straight and examining me critically, she asked me, half jokingly: "Lena, why are you wearing my clothes?"