2910leiv - Then came Janto with a baby carriage

Chapter 15 In-between places


Orion found himself in a strange land; there were no discernable landmarks; no buildings or trees; no rivers or valleys. Just a rolling thick fog covering the ground as far as he could see. The fog was bluish in colour, but it didn’t feel damp, as fog was want to do. It didn’t feel cold or warm either. It was just a pleasant state of being. He looked around and at first he saw nothing but the fog. But then shapes appeared in it. He looked at them in wonder. He laughed. There was the shape of an apple and over there was seagull. A tree, a large dragonfly, a train, a toilet, the Torchwood SUV. For some reason he found all of them funny.


A shape appeared by his hand and he gently scooped it up; cupping it in his hand. It became a spider with great big eyes all blinking up at him. He smiled delightedly. The spider sat in his hands for a moment, and then it scurried to the tip of his fingers. It wove a thread and secured it there. The spider turned and looked back up at him, winked and dived off his fingers, like a bungee jumper. He laughed heartily as the spider dove down back into the mist where it disappeared. The thread dissolved into mist.


Then he heard a sound. It was beautiful. Like the sound of shooting star or a unicorn’s laughter or something equally impossible. He looked around to see if he could spot the cause of it. But there was nothing. Just the random appearances of all the various shapes. Then he became aware of a blue light in the distance. The sound seemed to come from there. It seemed to beckon him; calling him to it. He smiled and moved toward it.


But he could not get near it. There was something holding him back. He could feel it; like a rope stretched taught, preventing him. He turned and looked at his tether. It was invisible to normal sight, but when he used his other-sight on it, he could see it clearly. A thin shining golden bond going off into the distance. His bonded would be at the other end somewhere. A deep longing filled him. He wanted to go to his bonded; but it was too soon. They were not yet ready. He looked over his shoulder at the blue light. It was still calling for him. But his bonded would not let him go. As he watched he became aware of another sound; reverberating along the bond. Like striking a chord on an instrument. Fear. His bonded was afraid for him. Terrified that he would leave them all alone. With a sigh and a look of longing he turned away from the beautiful light.




Far away on another world a small child sat bolt upright in bed. A single tear flowed down its cheek and a smile adorned its face.




Rhiannon stood by the kitchen sink absentmindedly drying off a cup with a dishtowel. She stared out of the window, not really noticing the small drama going on in the street. The Carlton’s from two houses down were loading their two youngest children into an army ambulance. Both of them sported the now so familiar purple spots. Luckily the oldest child was an adolescent and as such was not infected.


Her thoughts moved to her own children upstairs. They were hooked up to IV’s and what not. She had never before seen half of the equipment the grumpy doctor had brought in to her house. Some of it seemed decidedly alien, though she couldn’t actually be sure. Sometimes she cursed her lack of education. Maybe if she had studied harder and gone on to higher education, she wouldn’t feel so out of her depths now. Ianto had assured her that the kids wouldn’t come to any harm and that Dr. Harper knew what he was doing. She had reluctantly accepted it. After all Ianto trusted the man with his own son’s life.


It wasn’t safe to keep Orion in the same room as Mica. He was still making everything fly around the room, though now he seemed to limit it to the room he was in; once the small ghettoblaster had whizzed past Mica coming very close to hitting her. That’s when they decided to empty David’s room and put Orion in there and to put David in with Mica. Ianto had been very understanding of their concerns and had helped without objections.


She thought of her younger brother. She had tried prying him away from the bedside for just a few hours, but he wouldn’t budge. Her lips curled up slightly. He was just as stubborn as she was. ‘Must be a family trait.’ He had eventually fallen asleep in the chair, his hand still holding onto Orion’s.




Orion sat down on the trunk of a fallen tree. It seemed he had willed the tree into existence. He had seen it in his mind and then it was there. He decided to try another thing. He stared at a patch of fog swirling around him and his tree, and he envisioned a pigeon. It wasn’t that he particularly liked pigeons; it was just that he had seen so many of them in Cardiff. Moments later a pigeon swirled into being out of the fog. It shook its wings, as if to ruffle its feathers into place and then it took flight. He watched it fly off as he laughed in delight. This was a fun place. Where ever he was.




By the late afternoon Jack came back to check how things were going. Johnny had handed him a coffee and patted him sympathetically on the back. Johnny had seen to the clearing out of David’s things. That had been too much of a reminder of what would happen if the children didn’t make it. It had suddenly become way too real for his liking. So he had helped a neighbour with some chores, just to get away for awhile and had been taking care of the household, freeing up Rhiannon to focus on the kids. Still he was finding it hard to cope.


Jack looked to be fairing no better. He was rather rumpled looking and had dark lines under his eyes. His face was a hard mask covering a deep rooted anxiety. Johnny knew there was little he could do to help. That sort of thing was more Rhiannon’s department than his. So he just offered his presence and sent the man up the stairs.


Jack stopped in the doorway, watching the scene in front of him. Ianto was sleeping in the chair. His chin resting on his chest. ‘He’ll have a sore neck when he wakes up’ Jack thought. Orion seemed to be resting calmly at the moment. The IV’s had been taped to the wall by the head of the bed; to prevent them from flying around the room. A strange device was taped to the mattress next to Orion’s pillow. It blinked with small lights, but didn’t do anything else that he could tell. ‘Must be one of Owen’s toys.’


Rhiannon softly approached him and put her arm around his waist. He was touched by her gesture and smiled gently at her, before looking back at his family.


“Orion’s doing a little better now.” She whispered. “At least he’s not thrashing around like he did before.” Jack nodded. He could see the improvement, but he didn’t dare hope yet.


“Ianto hasn’t left his side, since we moved him in here.” She sighed. “I tried to get him to take a nap in our room but he refused.” Jack smiled. That was so like his Ianto. “Go on, I’ll bring you an extra chair.” She said and gave him a slight push into the room. He smiled at her and went over to the bed. He smiled down at Ianto as he put his greatcoat over him like a blanket. Then he looked down at his son. Orion was stirring a little, but was still deeply unconscious. He bent down and kissed his forehead and sat down on the floor where he could reach both of them. He put his head on the mattress and thought of the events of the last few days.


Bringing in Martha Jones and UNIT had proved a stroke of luck. Their vast resources had really helped with dealing with this crisis. If Torchwood had been the sole agency on the job; they wouldn’t have stood a chance. UNIT had quickly set up treatment centres around Cardiff. Anyone suffering from normal injuries and illnesses was sent there. The weather was too cold to allow the sick children to be treated in the tents. Instead they were filling up the hospitals; in some cases the local gyms had also been drafted into service. Medical personnel saw to the IV’s and tubes. The parents were given the job of tending to their children’s needs where no medical skills were required. Such as changing diapers, maintaining hygiene and preventing bedsores.


It had been UNIT that had discovered the source of the infection. Both Torchwood and UNIT had investigated all sorts of possible sources. They had turned the city upside down, leaving not so much as a sewer unchecked. Samples taken from the Cardiff Waterworks showed that the virus had been found in the water in an abundantly high concentration. It seemed almost certain that someone had deliberately planted it there. ‘Why would someone do something like that? And who?’ he pondered the matter even as his eyes closed and he drifted off to sleep.


When Rhiannon returned with the chair, she just smiled, set the chair down in the hall and softly closed the door.




Orion didn’t know how long he had been in that strange place, but it seemed a long time. He had grown tired of creating things out the fog and the blue light seemed to be taunting him now. He wished he could leave that strange place and just go home. He wanted his Tad and his Daddy; and he wanted Myfanwy and Rhiannon and all the others. He drew his legs up, wrapped his arms around them and cried.


He had fallen asleep at some point, but when he woke up he was still there at the strange place. It wasn’t funny anymore. He wanted his Daddy to hold him and his Tad to tell him that everything would be okay. That he would be safe. He cried himself to sleep again; dreaming of being lost in the fog and of flying Christmas trees.


His own scream wakened him. He sat up and felt his heart pounding in his chest. Gradually a form of calmness returned. But he was still afraid and lonely. He reached out with his awareness and was astonished at what he found. Instead of the pale blue fog he was surrounded by a myriad of colours; a sight more glorious than he had ever imagined. They were shining beautifully; ever changing. Their beauty brought tears to his eyes. As he looked he noticed the bonds to his loved ones. As he spotted them, he became aware of their love and concern for him. They wanted him back just as much as he wanted to be back. Silent tears ran down his cheeks.


“Please. I just want to go home. Please.”




On the planet Hallow IV, in the sacred city of Travesty, a stately woman snapped out of her meditation quite suddenly. She had heard a whisper on the Web of Blood. Another child of her line had need of her. With a flourish of her hand she summoned an assistant.




Don’t worry. Things will be looking better soon. Sorry about the shortness of this chapter, but there are things to come that just wouldn’t fit into this chapter.

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