Since I am a poor chickadee with no wealth to speak of, I think it's safe to say that neither BtVS nor Torchwood are mine. ^^;Written for: TtH August Fic A Day ChallengeSummary: A shaken Joyce calls on Jack when Buffy doesn't come back.Author's Note:
Set immediately post 'Becoming Part 2' for BtVS, pre-series for Torchwood. Prequel to my short story 'Broken
"Jack... she's gone...
His heart stopped beating in his chest, and yet he lived still.
"Gone?" His voice was low, deep, as he echoed the word back, his grip tightening on the phone in his hand. Control took over, evening his tone, clipping his words. "What do you mean? Joyce, what happened? Where did she go?"
"She- oh god, Jack. I- I messed up, and we fought. I told her that if she left, to never come back. And she's gone. Her things- she's taken a bag, and she's not coming home. I don't know where she is, or where she's going!
" Joyce, so calm and collected, except when it came to their daughter. And she was crying. As close to panicked as she ever came. Jack's jaw set as he began to move, to find a private area where no one else could overhear the conversation. There were too many prying eyes and ears in Torchwood, and he stepped toward the lift.
"You need to tell me the whole story. Why
did you tell her not to come back? Why was she leaving to begin with? Is she in any danger?" Beneath him, the lift started to rise, Jack a firm fixture atop it as he left Torchwood behind him. On the other end of the line, he could hear her compose herself, and he could almost see her in his mind; eyes red and shot with blood, lips crinkling white with stress as she pressed them together to silence her tears. Moments later, when she spoke once more, he was well on his way down the street, mixing with the crowd easily.
"There was a girl murdered at her school, and her friends were hurt. The police came by looking for Buffy.
"Did you tell them anything?"
"No; I thought- I thought she might be in trouble. But when she came home...
" Joyce quieted again, and he knew she was fighting with her emotions. Fighting to remain as under control as he himself was. "There was a man with her, and we were attacked by-
" A more abrupt cut off, this time, mid sentence. Jack's brows furrowed, his eyes darkening as he continued to walk.
"Attacked by who? Or what?
" There shouldn't be any alien activity in Sunnydale, he'd made sure of it when Joyce and Buffy had moved. He had always worried about the unusually high death rate, however. And the explanations for the deaths... they were worse than some of the stories here in Cardiff.
"Is there anything such as a vampire?
" She was hesitant and afraid. Inwardly, he tensed. It couldn't be...
"Yes. You were attacked by a vampire?"
"I- I think so. Buffy and her friend killed it- right in front of me. She told me that she's a vampire slayer.
Jack stopped. In the middle of the crowd, continuing to flow around him, he froze, and his head skipped a beat once more. His daughter was a vampire slayer. And the woman he'd once loved- still loved, although he would never burden her with that again- had reacted- poorly. There was a long moment of silence, and driven by guilt, Joyce spoke again.
"I thought she would be normal- she wasn't supposed to have any of your issues, Jack. That's why I went with Hank, and why we didn't tell her for so long. How did this happen?
"This isn't one of 'my' issues, Joyce,' he clipped out, his voice colder than he intended, but he didn't take it back. He loved Joyce... but if forced to choose between she and their daughter, his answer would always be Buffy. "This has nothing to do with me. But I'll find her. And I'll let you know when I do."
He didn't say 'if,' because he would
find her. Jack would call in every favor he'd ever owned, use every resource at his command, to find and bring back his daughter. She'd already been abandoned by her adoptive father, and now by her mother, and he refused to abandon her as well. His phone clicked shut, without waiting for a response from Joyce, and he turned quickly. He wouldn't rest until he'd found her.