Reposted! 12-5-11 I have reposted this chapter now that I have a Beta reader. Thank you Whitewolf200056.
Authors Notes: This is not my first story, but it is for Terra Nova. As many others out there, the idea of Mark and Maddy has caught my attention. Not only because the way that Mark acts towards Maddy, but the fact that everything seems like a true fairytale on the surface, nothing is what it seems. If you have read some of my other stories, you know that I like to get to the heart of characters, and find out what makes them who we see on the show, and maybe fill in some holes that have us all wondering why they act/do some things.
Because we don't know a whole lot about Mark Reynolds, I'm making this story out to be a bit AU. I will admit that I am a few episodes behind (last one I watches was 'Runaway') but I kind of know what happens in those that I have yet to watch, so please understand that anything that happens in the story that differs from the main show is because that is the way it needs to happen for the plot line to play out right. This story is set after 'What Remains'.
Even though this is going to focus on Mark and Maddy, the other characters are also going to play a large role in the plot as well.
As always, I love feedback. I am not, however, one of those authors who relies on it in order to update, or continue. I'm not really sure how long this story is going to turn out to be; right now it's planed out for ten chapters. That is subject to change as I start to write. (I have a habit of turning a short story into a long epic tale.)
As a reminder, this is a 'Mature' rated story, so there are going to be some harsh subject matters and violence. Please do not read if this bothers you.
Now that I have all that out of the way, I hope that you all enjoy the story!
Pushing the burning stinging discomfort, which was coursing though his arm and shoulder muscles out of his mind, Corporal Mark Reynolds focused on reaching his self appointed goal of finishing his ten repetition work out. From pushups, crunches and pull ups, he was pushing himself more than the others. He always prided himself on trying to be the best that he could be, to be the top of his class, and to be able to handle anything and everything that would be thrown at him.
Keeping count in his head, he looked at his digital data watch, which he had set out on the floor in front of him. The white numbers flashed on the soft blue background, counting down, informing him that he only had a few more minutes before his time was up. Sweat dripped from his brow and trailed down his tone cheek as it made its way to his smooth chin, only to land on the floor of his bunk room floor.
He only had one more set to complete before his last two minutes were up. Once counting out his fiftieth pushup he forced his body to leap up using his leg muscles, and made his way over to the doorjamb where there was a pull-up bar build in. Wasting no time he took hold of the bar, his large callous hands gripping tight. Lifting up his legs and crossing his ankles together, he began to pull himself up only to lower himself and repeat the exercise. He could feel the burning in his core, his abs and shoulders as he lifted his weight, but forced it out of his mind. Keeping his breathing calm he counted to twenty, only to release the bar to make his way over to the next part of his own work out course.
Taking his spot on the floor once more, he sat down, bringing his knees up and continued with his crunches. The sound of the timer going off right as he completed his last crunch was a well received sound that filled the small room. Reaching out for the watch that still lay on the floor, he turned off the timer, and took a moment to relax, focusing on his breathing. He had been able to complete his own hellish workout now for the last two weeks within the time limit.
'Perhaps it's time to up it again,' he thought to himself as he made his way over to the foot locker at the end of his bed, pulling out a fresh pair of boxer briefs, pants, his towel, and shower bag. He then made his way to the bathroom.
Unlike so many of his fellow soldiers, who thought that as long as they passed the PFT they were good, Mark always sought out ways to push himself. Even if it meant working out three times a day, every day. Once he found the standers too easy for him, he had gone to Commander Taylor to see if he knew of anything that would give him a challenge.
He could still recall the smile on the older man's face as he looked over his should to his second in command, Lieutenant Washington. When he had asked for a challenge, they sure as hell gave him one. They had pulled up an old archive of workouts, telling him that the old 'Navy SEAL Fitness' training should keep him busy for a while. It had been a brutal training course that had been long outdated due to the poor air conditions and the lack of proper nutrition available.
It hadn't taken Mark long to read up on the standers, and found himself working up to matching each one. The idea of being able to do one hundred push-ups plus in two minutes, along with sit-ups, was something that he couldn't stop thinking about. But it didn't end there; he would also have to be able to reach twenty pull-ups straight, without touching the ground or breaking, as well as run one and a half miles in less than nine minutes. There was a swimming standard as well, but there hadn't been any place that was safe enough to be able to swim the five hundred yards in nine minutes. The idea that there had been men who had been able to accomplish these goals was something that drove Mark to try and match them.
The few friends that he had, told him not to even bother with it, to just give up and let it be. But he couldn't. He wasn't a quitter. They hadn't thought that the young twenty year old would be able to reach the unbelievable goal. That had been two years ago, and even though it did take him twenty four months to work up to it, he had. For the last two weeks he had been able to accomplish the challenge without fault. He knew that it was only going to be a matter of time before he wasn't feeling the burn of reaching his physical limits.
The only ones who had words of encouragement had been Lt. Washington and Commander Taylor. They checked in with him often, and would even observe him while he would run around the compound in the early mornings or late evenings. He had long ago given up working out with the others, knowing that they just couldn't keep up with him anymore. And in truth, he didn't want to hear their criticism.
He had been truly surprised the first time that the Commander had fallen into step right alongside him one morning. No words had been spoken, but Mark had been appreciative of the small act of support. He had thought that it was just a onetime thing, the Commander doing his part to lift the spirit of one of his soldiers, letting him know that he approved of his dedication.
It wasn't a onetime thing however.
Every morning, Mark would find his right side occupied by a man who he had come to hold a great amount of respect for. The Commander had told him that he was greatly impressed that he had been able to accomplish such a feat, and that it was refreshing to see the young man push himself to the limits. 'You remind me of my younger self,' the Commander had told him. To receive such a commit form the highly respected man had been an honor that Mark held dear, knowing that he never offered anything that he didn't mean.
His comrades however hadn't been too happy about it. To them, he was trying to show them up, trying to show off and look good in the eyes of their commanding officers. They couldn't have been further from the truth.
It wasn't a competition to him. It wasn't about who could do the most push-ups, or who could complete the most pull-ups. It wasn't even about who could run the fastest. It wasn't just about being able to push his own weight up and down with ease, but to be able to pick himself off the ground. It wasn't about the strength in his arms to lift his body, but the fact that if he needed to, he could reach higher ground and safety. Nor was it about the coiling mussels in his legs that could run the mile and a half in under nine minutes, but the fact that he would be able to run to the aid of those who needed him, should disaster strike.
Everything he did wasn't for himself, but for those around him. He would gladly push himself over the limit if that meant that others would be safe. It was that simple to him, and it was that mindset that had brought him to Terra Nova in the first place.
Turning on the water in the shower stall and waiting for it to warm up, Mark couldn't help but think back to the life he left behind. He never thought when he was little, that he would be living in a world such as this. Sure he had played with toy dinosaurs when he was little, what little boy didn't? However, he never thought that he would have been chosen to cross the time fracture in order to live in a time and place where they would roam around freely. Sometimes it still felt like a dream, and any moment he would wake up in his bed still living with his loving mother and stepfather at a young and tender age.
Stepping under the cascading water, he couldn't help but think of his family. His father had died when he had been only a young boy. He had been killed in a robbery when someone was trying to take his re-breather from him in the substation on his way home. They had said that it hadn't been the shot that killed him, but the pollution in his lungs.
He could recall the tears that his mother shed in her grief, thinking that nothing would ever make her smile again. He had done everything that he knew how to make sure she wouldn't fall into a depression. It was years later when she started to date again, and as much as he wanted to hate the other man, he couldn't when he saw the smile he put on his mothers face.
They had gotten married when he was fourteen, and Robert had done everything in his power to make sure that Mark knew that he wasn't trying to take his mother away from him, but joining the family that they already had. For three years things had been as good as they could have been for them, until they found out that his mother was pregnant with twins.
The fear on their faces was still etched into Mark's memory. They had been at a loss of what to do, a family was four, it was the law. The doctor who had learned of the double pregnancy had given them a few days to come to terms with the news before he reported them to the Population Control office. In case such as these, there were only two options. One was to terminate the pregnancy; the other was to give up one child, once born, for adoption to a family who could not conceive.
For three nights he had to listen to his mother's heartfelt cries. It was against their beliefs to end the small little lives growing inside of her, but he knew that it would be much too painful for her to have to choose which one was to stay, and which one to give up.
He had spent the time researching, trying to see if there was another way, a third option. He wouldn't settle for them taking his baby siblings away from each other, let alone his mother. It had been a long shot, but he had found out about the military training program. He had brought it to his mother and step father, telling him that if this worked out, they would be able to keep both babies.
The program was to help enlist young men from the ages of eighteen to twenty-three for the placement within the military. The only set back had been that he was only sixteen at the time. Together they all went and talked to the recruiter, and learned that as long as he had graduated high school and had his parents' consent, then there was nothing stopping him from joining the program. Once he was signed up and within the program, he would be under the protection of the government, no longer under the care of his mother and step father. It was a loop-hole that they had found and one that they planned to take full advantage of.
It had been difficult in the beginning, being one of the youngest, but he never let that stop him. It only took him two years to grow within the ranks, and to prove that he may be young, but he was able to accomplish anything that was put in front of him. He needed to be strong, he couldn't afford to be let go and discharged before he was a legal adult. His two baby twin sisters had needed him to stay strong so that they could grow up within the loving family that they had, in the loving arms of his mother, and under the watchful eyes of his step father.
When he had turned eighteen, he had undergone multiple tests both mental and physical, and was shocked to learn that he had been chosen to take a place on the Fifth Pilgrimage through the time fracture.
He hadn't chosen to accept the spot until he talked to his mother, knowing that the trip was one way. He'd been torn between staying and going, but when he heard his mother's kind words of understanding and encouragement, he knew that it was alright to cross over.
"You have grown into such a wonderful man, Mark," she had said to him with her kind loving smile. "We will always be your family, and you will always been in our hearts, but it's time that you grown into the strong, brave man I know you are. You won't, you can't do that here. Your future is only going to be what you want it to be if you leave for the past."
That was all he needed to hear. He had needed to know that they wouldn't blame him for leaving, and they didn't. They'd been excited for him and the opportunity that was offered to him. It had been hard to leave them, he wasn't above admitting that he shed a few tears, and he still felt a pinch in his chest every time he thought of them, not knowing what was to come of them. Not being able to be around for his sisters, or being able to see them grow up. Before he left, he wrote letters to both of them to read as they got older, knowing that there wasn't any other way for them to know who he was other then what their mother would tell them. He felt like it was the least he could do for them before he left.
Feeling the heat of the water begin to chill, he shut it off and grabbed his towel he had hung over the stall door. Once dry he stepped out, he wrapped the damp towel around his narrow hips and whipped his hand over one of the two mirrors removing the steam that clung to it. Pulling out his deodorant, he lifted his arm to apply it, taking note of the changes in his body. He wasn't the small scrawny kind who had joined the MTP, not knowing a thing about combat or survival. That boy had been replaced with a very capable man, who was not only trained in hand to hand combat, but also long range marksmen ship, survival, search and rescue, and field medical care. There wasn't just one thing that he exceeded in, but many.
His body reflected that.
His shoulders were strong from carrying heavy packs, his chest and abs cut and chiseled from the hard workouts, his hands were hard and callous from holding a firearm, and from all the volunteer work he put into helping around the colony. Even though he was strong, he was also fast, knowing that it was speed and quick reflexes that he would rely on more than brute strength.
To others, mostly the female population, they saw an incredible young man with a youthful and strong body. He had heard all the talk, about how many of the women in the colony would love to show their thanks for his service, knowing full well what they had in mind. Did the thought cross his mind to take them up on the offer? Sure it did, he was a male after all, and there wasn't a guy out there who would turn down the opportunity at getting attention from a woman.
However, Mark wasn't that type of man. He held physical intimacy in a higher regard than most others. For him it wasn't about just getting off, he liked to think of it as something special to share with some who held his heart. It was just one more thing that the guys gave him a hard time about, but it never made him waver. He knew that when he found the right one, someone who truly understood him for who he was, who saw him for who he was and not what he looked like, that it would be worth it. It was something the others would never understand, and it was something he knew they never would.
The sound of the bunk room door opening and slamming shut, alerted him to the fact that two of his bunkmates had returned from their shift. Pushing the thoughts of his family and future away, he reached out for his clothing to get dressed. Pulling on his relaxed camo printed cargo pants, he walked out of the bathroom to see what the others were up to.
"Fuck, man it smells like a jockstrap in here," he heard Jason complain. The younger man had enlisted while in Terra Nova. He had come over while still very young with his family, and as he grew up he had shown an interest in becoming a member of the security team. He had only been seventeen when he joined, and only allowed to take shifts that allowed him to remain inside the colony. He wouldn't be able to patrol till he was eighteen and passed his PFT and survival test.
"Sure it's not you?" Mark replied with a smile. It wasn't the first time that the others would complain about the smell as they walked into the room, it's what you got when you had four young men living in a small bunk together. Unlike the new housing units that had been build for the families, their bunks had just enough room for two bunk beds, four foot lockers, and a small duel bathroom. It was easy for the stench of dirty clothing and uniforms to overpower the air. Needless to say, they left the windows open as much as they could to vent out the stale crud smelling air.
"You were working out again weren't you?" Troy asked as he pulled off his gear and armor, placing it on his bunk. If anything, Mark would have to say Troy was one of the only men who he really got along with. He was older than Mark by five years, but he was one of the few who didn't dog on him for his work out habits and choices in life.
"Do you even have to ask him that?" Jason muttered. "It's all the guy does," he said with a hint of bitterness in his voice. "He gets up, works out, eats, works out again, goes on shift, works out one last time, showers and then goes to bed." he went on with a shake of his head. "You so need to get laid man. It helps release all that built up stress," he said with a cocky grin. "I'm sure that girl you're always around wouldn't mind helping you out with that." Jason added before thinking.
The air in the room quickly changed. It held a charge to it that felt like there was an electric storm rolling within the four walls. There weren't many things that upset Mark, but talking about Maddy Shannon like she was one of the other loose girls within the colony was one thing that was sure to get him seeing red.
Before he could connect his clinching, white knuckled fist with Jason's jaw, Troy stepped between them. "Jason shut up," he said calling back to the other man. "That's Jim Shannon's daughter you talking about," he added, trying to clue in the younger man of whom he was talking about. It was a well known fact that Mark wasn't someone to piss off, he was more than capable to handle himself in a fight, but they all shared a common fear/respect for Jim Shannon.
Mark was glad to see fear creep onto Jason's face once he realized that it wasn't just a random girl he had brought up. There weren't many who didn't know who Jim Shannon was, he was admired by those inside the colony and those outside. Many looked up to him as they did the Commander.
He shouldn't have even been in Terra Nova, rumor had it that he had been in prison and had been serving a six year sentence for backing the law. It wasn't hard for many to learn the truth, the Shannon family had been found guilty for breaking the 'family is four' law. The fact that he had managed to get out and smuggle their third child, his youngest daughter, through the time fracture was testimony enough to show what he would do to keep his family safe and together. Deep down inside, Mark would like to think that he would have done the same thing.
Family was everything.
It had only taken Jim one day to gain the guarded respect of their fearless leader and gain a new title within the colony. Going from stow away/child smuggler to a trusted member of the colonies protection and defense team. It was also common knowledge that the Commander and the colony's only Sheriff were becoming close friends.
It was easy for Mark to look up to Jim, he was smart and his instincts unmatched. Mark could only hope that he could someday be as loving a father and husband as he was. The man had no problem showing his love, care and affection to his family, nor did he hold back when they were in danger. It made him a force to be reckoned with, and it didn't take long for him to gain a place within the Commanders inner circle of trusted men.
"Shit man," Jason said as he held up his hands trying to show Mark that he didn't mean any offence. "I didn't know."
"Then let this be a lesson on why you shouldn't open your mouth when you don't know what you're talking about," Mark said in a calm voice, trying to reign in his anger.
It wasn't a secret that he was attracted to Maddy, but he knew right now there wasn't much he could do about it. She was only fifteen years old, and as much as he would admit that she was beyond smart and mature for her age, there were some lines that he wasn't about to cross. He would be perfectly content with being her friend and keeping her safe, while working to build trust with her father, and family. Once she turned sixteen, he would approach Jim and ask him if he could court her. It hadn't taken him long to see that there was something special about Maddy Shannon, something that he had never found in any other women, and it was because of that, he couldn't even think of any other women in the same way he did her.
He respected her and her family far too much to try and go behind their back and force something that Maddy may not be ready for. If there was anything that he had learned over the last four years it was to be calm, focused, and have a goal in mind. He knew that if he waited and took his time that it would be worth it in the end. He wasn't about to do anything that would end up hurting her, or come in-between her and her family.
He was pulled out of his thoughts as a loud, piercing alarm screamed in the evening air. Without sparing another look at Jason, Mark wasted no time in putting on his full gear and heading out to see what the alert was for. Double checking his firearm, he made his way to Lt. Washington's side.
"Sixers," was all the Lieutenant said. With a firm nod, he took his position alongside her, and the other as they waited for the Commander to give orders. As much as he had been looking forward to a good night's rest, it was moments like these that he trained for.
Authors Note: Well there you have the first chapter and the foundation of who Mark Reynolds is going to be. The whole 'Navy SEAL training' is real. All the stats and standards that I wrote into this chapter are what they must pass to become a US Navy SEAL.
Also, I'm sorry if some of you have a problem with Mark being twenty two and Maddy being only fifteen. I did a lot of research and math and this is what is most believable.
Again, feedback would be great. I'm hoping to get the next chapter out within a few days.
Thank you all for reading, and I hoped that you enjoyed it.