Author's Note: I'm sorry for the delay. I wasn't expecting as many final projects as I had assigned, and when they were finally finished writing was the last thing I wanted to do. I'm wading back into the waters, so to speak, and I promised several of you an update. Thank you for the interest and the kind messages of encouragement (and a few of begging, which still made me smile and shake my head simultaneously). This is a very short filler chapter and not at all satisfying, but it was still kind of fun to write and it's a preamble to adventures to come. This might last a little longer than originally planned, mostly because I don't remember everything I originally planned. Here's to an adventure!
"I think he was a field medic or something, but I know he fought. He said he killed people. I suppose his side won because he's alive, but I don't really know the details. He wasn't very eager to talk about it. I guess it was a bittersweet kind of victory," Jenny said matter-of-factly.
"He wasn't a field medic. At least, not in the way you're thinking. He fixes things. Saves people. He's got a bit of a hero complex," Jack said in a slightly strained voice. "That's why he's called the Doctor."
Jenny screwed her face up in thought as his words sank in. "But—you know him?"
"There aren't a lot of Time Lords left," Jack said drily. He removed his hand from her back and wiped his mouth. "You're his…"
"His daughter," Jenny said, puffing herself up a little bit before cringing. "Ow."
"Bruised ribs. One fractured. Not too shabby, all things considered. What happened?"
"The crash," Jenny asked. "I guess I didn't watch the monitors closely enough and—"
"Not with the crash. Tosh can figure out what went wrong there when she does a scan of the computers," Jack said impatiently. "The Doctor. Why aren't you with him, if you're his daughter?" He paused and then added, "And who's your mother, anyway?"
"Don't have one," Jenny said as though this was the most natural, obvious thing in the world. "But he left before I woke up. Blokes back home said they—he—thought I was dead for good. But I wasn't, and I'm not, and here I am, I guess."
"And here you are," Jack echoed back. His brow was still knit together. "No mother, though. How's that?"
"The Machine," Jenny said simply. It appeared as though she thought everyone ought to have one, for she looked at Jack with quite a pitying look when he shrugged his shoulders and shook his head to indicate that the words meant nothing to him. "That's my mother, I suppose. It takes DNA samples and creates, well—"
"You. People like you," Jack finished for her.
"Children of the Machine. Everyone from back home is one. They do sample collections every morning."
Jack laughed, although Jenny didn't understand why. She pouted in offense while he said, "Your mother's a machine. That makes much more sense now."
"Why's that," Jenny demanded sharply, still looking wounded by his reaction. Jack shook his head, wiping a fake tear of laughter from the corner of his eye.
"Because I can't picture that man with anyone but—" He cut off suddenly, the laughter fading from his face. "Well, let's just say your father's no Playboy. Trust me, I've offered a great game." He winked, trying to bring the laughter back.
"Playboy," Jenny frowned.
"Local term," Jack said airily, waving his hand in front of his face as though to erase the word from the conversation. "Unimportant. The question is, what're we going to do now, Blondie?"
"Jenny," she corrected automatically. She was rather fond of her name. "What about Donna? Do you know her? If you know Father, you must know her. They were thick as thieves when I saw them. Is she still traveling with Father? I'd like to see her. I liked her."
"Donna," Jack said slowly. "No, no. I don't think I've met her." But there was something in his voice that wasn't completely truthful. Jenny scowled at him, but he averted his eyes and changed the subject. "But your father… I guess we should figure out a way to send him a message, huh? I imagine he'd be pretty thrilled to find out you're really okay. Might pop in for a visit. It's been too quiet around here without him," he said with a reminiscent smile.
"I don't like quiet," Jenny said thoughtfully. It was a throw-away comment, really. It meant nothing. But Jack smirked.
"Neither do I," he said. "It's not in my blood."
"Mine either, apparently," she replied. She was watching him curiously. He appeared to be thinking.
"What do you think, Bl—Jenny," he corrected quickly at the irate look that darkened her features. "We can't do much until Tosh finishes the computer scans. And you're still healing some, although we've got ways of speeding that up to a matter of days rather than weeks," he said, eying her carefully. "There's some phone calls to make, but those won't take that much time—and they can't be made until the rest is done, anyway."
"Okay," Jenny said carefully. She wasn't sure what she was agreeing to—if anything. Only that he was saying a bunch of things that she was pretty sure he had said before, things that involved her but did not include her. She was not needed for daily business to go per usual in Torchwood Tower. "So?"
"So," Jack said dramatically. He had a flair for dramatics, she had noticed, with his long pauses and winks and mischievous grins like a scheming child with a handful of mud and grass. "What do you say to making us some hell of a noise?"