Disclaimer: Kudos to Kudos, the Beeb and the amazing actors and actresses who brought such a wonderful time and place to life!
A.N: In some ways, a continuation of my story Backways of Eternity, and definitely a continuation of the final episode of Ashes to Ashes...I still can't believe that it's over...
He sighed, memories from a forgotten dream whirling through his head as the new DI, whatever his name was crashed around the outside office, even after the stern talking to he'd been subjected to mere minutes before. With a grimace, his eyes drank in the pictures that were now taking up his desk, Sam and Annie, Chris and Shaz, Ray with Viv, and then Alex...
He sighed, swirling the scotch around his glass.
He nearly choked on his mouthful as the words echoed through his head once again, the single syllable on repeat as it had been since she'd brushed the fleshless bone of his skull, even if from a different life. And yet, he still sat in his office, Bolly-less and with memories it'd taken him long enough to suppress the first bloody time. At least he'd managed to knock a few of Keets' teeth out when he'd got rid of the scummy bastard. And in the end, it was all for the best.
"WHAT!" he roared at the tap on the glass door, eyes barrelling up from the golden sea that was ironically the only constant in his life...after life...
A deep throaty chuckle echoed through the office, "I can't say I'm surprised, Gene."
His eyes widened to the size of saucers, "Bolls?"
Her hair was curled from the rain he hadn't realised was falling outside, the beaten leather jacket he'd missed so badly since it had disappeared with the dawn of eighty three, coupled with a tight set of jeans and leather boots that were splattered with mud.
"I would've expected a better greeting than that!" She grumbled, even as she sauntered towards him, pulling him gently to his feet.
His eyes widened, "You're actually here?"
She shrugged, "Heaven's not all it's cracked up to be, especially not when you're stuck here."
"I'm not!" He mock grumbled, "Ain't nobody that can bloody keep the Gene Genie down!"
With an affectionate roll of her eyes she wrapped her arms around him, "Damn, I missed you."
"How long...?" He murmured, half terrified of her answer.
"Less than a day." She carefully reassured, "It didn't seem right without you. On the positive side, Nelson's promised to keep a bottle of his best scotch ready for us, for when we're ready."
"You absolutely certain?" He checked.
"Yes." She stated firmly, the words echoing with the weight of eternity.
He grinned, the young boy he still was shining through as he declared, "Right then, Bolls, first thing is to break in the lousy git who's tramping around my patch like a bear with a sore paw!"
Less than three months later, the pair stood and watched as Bear (The name had stuck since his first night in CID) ambled through the door of the Railway Arms, an Asian girl running out to pull him in, not hesitating a second in crashing her lips to him.
"As much as I like the bloke, can't say I'm sad to see th' back of 'im." Gene declared.
Alex chuckled, "He turned out all right in the end."
Gene shrugged, "You ready to head home, wife?"
She sighed dramatically, "I suppose, husband."
He chuckled in delight, looping his arm around hers.
"Oh, and by the way, I'm pregnant." She lightly mentioned.
Stopping, shocked, he blinked.
"Gene?" She prompted.
His grin returned with a vengeance, "Blimey, Bolls! How did two stiffs such as ourselves manage a feat like that?"
Alex shrugged, "Beats me. Talk to me again in nine months."
"Holy-!" Molly Drake stumbled into CID behind her partner Jack Tyler.
"Hey, who're you?" demanded one of the chain smoking DC's from the back of the room.
"DI's Drake and Tyler." She stated firmly, her gaze drinking in the surroundings, landing on the name on the DCI's door, "Gene Hunt?" She whispered.
Another man laughed heartily, "Not in today, sweetheart. Off with 'is wife, she went into labour this morning. And that's DCI Hunt to you, missy."
Memories of the day she'd lost her mum ricocheted around her head, the file she'd been reading before her world had been turned completely upside down for the first time, "His wife?"
"And your boss, Assistant DCI Alex Hunt." He nodded.
A snort came from another corner of the room, "Maybe one day they'll get around to replacing her name plate."
"Drake?" Tyler asked incredulously, eyeing the desk's plate, "Wasn't that your-"
"Mum!" She shouted, terrified and excited all at once, "Which hospital?"
"Fenchurch, course." One said, confusedly.
Grabbing Jack's hand, she bolted out the doors, sprinting into the night.
"DAMN YOU GENE BLOODY HUNT!" Thundered a voice through the corridors that Molly hadn't heard in nearly ten years.
"Bloody hell..." Jack stated, "Hope you're not that loud when I eventually get you knocked up."
"I'm Molly Drake, Alex's daughter." She told the nurse on the door, receiving a nod from the barely conscious woman. She dragged Jack through the door, barely pausing at the scene before her.
The disgruntled midwife marched out at the sight of the pair marching in with hastily stolen scrubs on, "Thank God you're here! I'm fed up with the bloody pair of them. Twenty four hours of listening to their whinging without so much as a cuppa tea, let alone a break! I dunno how anyone could scream that long." She muttered as she marched out, "Should've become a typist."
"Gene!" Her mother moaned, barely looking a day older than when she'd pulled the sheet over her vacant face.
"Get down the end, catch the baby, Gene." She ordered, moving to grasp the hand of her mother.
He blinked at the intrusion, "Who the bloody hell are you?"
"Molly!" Alex said in shock, moaning as another contraction washed over her.
Her face burst into a massive grin, "It's me, mum."
"You're Bolls' Molly?" He demanded incredulously, "And who are you?"
"Jack Tyler, Sir." The utterly confused man said.
"Any relation to a Sam of Manchester?" Gene asked, "I c'n see hair, Molls."
"Push on the next contraction." Molly ordered her mum.
"I'm bloody well trying!" She snarled.
"Yeah, His grandson." Jack confirmed.
"Welcom' to the family!" He shouted.
"Gene?" the two women demanded.
He glanced up at his wife, rubbing her stomach to relieve some of her pain, "You've got th' head out, sweet'eart."
"One more push, Mum." Molly encouraged.
Her scream was joined by another, higher wail, and Gene's roar, "It's a GIRL!"
Molly laughed in delight, kissing her mother's cheek as Gene handed her sister into Alex's trembling arms.
"Wow!" Alex blubbered, "Wow!"
Gene chuckled, coming around to wrap an arm around his family, "Yeah, Bolls. Our little miracle."
Still in shock, she placed her head against Gene's.
With a grin on her face at the scene before her, she turned to Jack, "Make sure no-one comes in. Heaven knows no-one here will have realised that a nursery's no place for a newborn."
He nodded, surreptitiously blocking the doorway.
"She's perfect..." Alex murmured, brushing the proffered cloth over the child's still messy face, her eyes widening as her second daughter snuffled at the contact.
"Damn good job, Bolls." Gene proudly murmured, hands gently stroking his daughter's head.
Her eyes drifted for a moment to Molly, a hint of sadness passing over her face, "What happened?"
"Bomb." Jack stated shortly, coming to stand beside his partner, "And we woke up in the same seedy hotel, the phone ringing telling us that we were to report into Fenchurch East."
Molly nodded, a grin breaking over her face, "Is this heaven?"
Alex beamed, her gaze gravitating once more down to the baby, "For me, at least, yes."
Sharon Samantha Hunt tore raucously through CID, her father chasing behind her with a huge grin on his face, and her niece Evie babbling happily from her sister's desk. She was swooped up into a pair of strong arms, her giggles growing as she was twirled around.
Fondly, Alex rolled her eyes at her family, turning to the last report from their most recent passer through and running her pen over the last signature box, the fifth since she'd returned from maternity leave.
"We still on fer the picnic this weekend?" Gene asked Molly and Jack, dropping Sharon into her mother's embrace.
"As long as we catch this bastard..." Molly agreed, idly bouncing Evie's seat, smiling as she babbled cheerfully.
"That's Daniel Marks..." Came a voice from behind them, "He looks..."
"What?" Gene demanded, shifting from the doting father into the Manc Lion in an instant, "Ugly? That's coz he's a scummy bastard. And considerin' I've yet to learn your moniker, I'm considering thinking the same thing of you..."
"Edward...DC Edward Mitchell...And my son Charlie." He said, letting the small boy come out from behind him.
When her eyes caught sight of the boy, Sharon wriggled down, toddling over and grabbing his hand before declaring, "Mine."
When Sharon Hunt became Sharon Mitchell, her twin brothers managed to unplug the sound system and sing the Wedding of Figgaro in an off key voice. Her father gave her away, and her mother sniffed proudly. Nobody cared about her massive girth, considering that she'd been engaged to Charlie since they were ten, and their soon to arrive triplets were a welcome surprise, and the cheesy eighties music at the reception filled the room with groans.
Unlike her mother, her labour barely lasted three hours, and on the dance floor of their parents' wedding, the triplets, two boys and girl arrived, screaming loudly even as the guests cheered heartily.
At the end of the night, Edward went to the pub.
Gene and Alex didn't.
Christine Edwina Hunt Mitchell wandered lazily along a silent London street beneath the impossibly star speckled sky, her brand new DC badge tucked into her tweed pants beside her iPhone, and her grandparents slowly shuffling along beside her.
"You both ready?" She asked, managing to hold back the tears that threatened to spill over her face.
Wrapped around each other, they smiled at her, eyes sparkling from their weathered faces, and nodded.
She dropped one last kiss on each wrinkly cheek, before pulling open the door of the Railway Arms, a smile crossing her face as the clinking scotch bottle washed the years off the faces of the pair. Together, they stepped purposefully across the threshold, and the door quietly shut behind them, leaving the street empty once again.
"Are you?" Asked a weasly voice from behind her.
She turned to face him, snorting at his outdated glasses, the battered shoes and ill-fitting suit. With her grandfather's bright blue eyes, she challenged, "Bring. It. On."
A.N: Many thanks to Mage and Beckles for their first fics, which prompted me to put this down on paper!