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This story is No. 3 in the series "The Child of Balime". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: It's all about trust, as Torchwood struggles to face down a villain from Buffy's past, and Seo and Ianto must deal with their past mistakes.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Dr. Who/Torchwood > Buffy-CenteredShoshiFR749,0910112,85616 Apr 1318 Apr 13Yes

Chapter Four

Author's Note: So... I looked over "the Prophecy of Harkness", and decided that it needed more work than I'd thought, before. Which means I'm just going to skip it, and move on to the next story in the series, which comes after "Judgment", called "A Scooby of Her Own." That story is wonderful. It does involve mostly original characters, so I'll include a preview at the bottom of this story, just so you'll be guaranteed to know that it's a good story, despite not knowing the characters.

Seo acts very Doctor in that story, or at least, I think so.

But with her own unique twist to it.

In the meantime, enjoy the tail end of "Judgment"!

"Looks like Ianto and Seo are not going to be a problem," said Jack, with a grin, seeing the two of them talking together, in hushed voices, in the kitchen. His grin fell, a little, looking over at Buffy. She seemed drained, a little frazzled and frantic. "You all right?"

Buffy sighed, hand against her head. "I've… been thinking," she said. "Through this whole adventure. Thinking… pretty hard."

Jack nodded.

"Just before I came here, I… got an offer," Buffy confessed to him. "A job offer. Apparently, Giles has been talking me up at his work, and… it went up and up the ladder… and… I guess Saxon heard it. Because I've been offered this… super high position. Working directly under Saxon, himself. In charge of all sorts of military alien-fighting things." She laughed. "I've been headhunted. By… Harold Saxon!"

Jack clapped her on the back. "Hey, good going! Top of the chain!"

"Yeah, it's kind of a big deal," Buffy agreed. "Great money. In London, so no three hour commute. And, you know, it's still major alien invasion central, there, so they probably need me."

Jack tried to smother his own sorrow at losing her deep down inside. This was so clearly the chance of a lifetime — it was no wonder she was jumping on it. Maybe… he'd still see her, every so often. If he was lucky. Get a chance to catch up with her.

"Well, we'll miss you, here," said Jack. "But I know you'll do great. Saxon's lucky to get you. And—"

"I've decided to turn it down," Buffy told him.

Jack stared at her. For a few moments, a little dumbfounded. Then seemed to understand, and nodded. "You… don't like politics."

(She'd told him, once before, that politicians gave her 'serious Mayor flashbacks.' Whatever that meant.)

Buffy sighed, a thoughtful expression still fixed on her face. Then her eyes flicked over to Jack, and she raised her eyebrows. The hint of a smile tugging at her lips. "It's not about how I feel. It's about… her," said Buffy. Her eyes fixed back on Seo, in the kitchen. A deep love spreading through her as she regarded her daughter, still talking with Ianto. "You're… a good influence on her, Jack. That means a lot to me. Really. A lot."

Jack was touched.

Buffy turned on him. A cringe on her face. "Except… I kind of told Seo that you'd ground her for a few centuries, after I'm dead and buried, if she did something stupid. That's… okay, right? I mean, I know it's not part of the Torchwood Child Care Package, but…"

Jack laughed. "Three centuries for opening the rift. Two for ending the world." He winked. "Count on me."

Buffy's face broke into a smile. "Thanks."

Jack turned back to the kitchen. "Good kid you got, there," he told her. His eyes fixed on Seo and Ianto. Okay, if he was going to be honest — not Seo so much. "Definitely like her taste in people."

Buffy was about to say something to this, when Suzie pushed past them, in a huff, gauntlet under her arm. She burst into the kitchen area, shouting, waving the gauntlet in their faces.

"Suzie's never going to let Seo hear the end of this," Buffy sighed.

"Nope," Jack agreed.

Seo leaned over her cup of coffee, a somber expression on her face, as she spoke to Ianto. Alone. In the kitchen.

"Was it… Lisa?" she asked. "That you lost?"

Ianto didn't answer. Didn't have to.

"She… tried to help me," Seo offered. "When I first arrived at Torchwood London. She was the only one who ever tried to help, that whole time." She looked down at the coffee, swirling it around. "I'm sorry. Really. For my part in what happened. I wish…" She swallowed. "I wish there was something I could do."

For a few moments, neither said anything.

"About… what you told me," Ianto ventured, at last. "Doing anything to save someone. Taking any risk. I… I mean, Lisa… she's…"

But that was when Suzie barged into the room, shouting at Seo for screwing up her resurrection gauntlet, because it was now all mis-calibrated, and what the hell was she thinking — you don't shove it on someone's chest, you're supposed to put it behind their head, and Seo had pumped way too much psychic energy into it, anyways, and…!

Seo tried to tune her out.

But when she looked back at Ianto, she discovered he'd gone.

The End.

Next time, in The Child of Balime: "A Scooby of Her Own."


The problem wasn't that Alison's parents were suddenly rich.

It was that, for some reason, they believed this made them suddenly posh.

The news had come completely unexpectedly. One of their distant relatives, on Alison's mother's side, had been an insanely rich old American bachelor, who was planning to leave his fortune to his favorite dog. Then, after one night, when he'd started chatting up some attractive, dashing blond girl, who looked about 50 years younger than himself, he apparently had a sudden change of heart, and had altered his will. Selecting one of his relatives — seemingly at random — and leaving his entire fortune to her.

Later that night, he'd had a heart attack. And died.

Alison's mum had been the sole beneficiary of the old bachelor's entire fortune.

Which meant that Alison's parents had become extremely rich. Overnight. For no apparent reason other than pure dumb luck.

The next morning, they put their house up for sale. And moved to London.

"We are a respectable family, now," Alison's dad had explained to her, when they were house-hunting in London. "And a respectable, upper-class family requires a respectable, upper-class home."

"Dad," Alison reminded him, "you work in sewage management."

They bought a six bedroom house in Chelsea Park Gardens, complete with gabled windows and ivy lining the brickwork and potted trees outside the front door. It was more the kind of house you'd buy to impress someone than the kind you'd actually want to live in.

"And this room," Alison's mum explained, "is the movie theater room. And when you turn out the lights…" She did so, and pointed at the ceiling, where tiny pinprick light bulbs flickered. "See? They look like stars!"

"Wouldn't that be really annoying, if you're watching a movie?" Alison asked.

But no one paid much attention to her. Particularly not Alison's mum or dad. They were busily spending their newly gained money, trying to join country clubs and show off to the neighbors, trying to create a brand new life for themselves.

"Not for ourselves," Mum told Alison. "For you and David. Our children. We're giving you a future you never thought you could have."

"A future… as a snooty posh kid," Alison checked.

"Think of it as an opportunity," said Dad. "A chance to pursue whatever interest you like, and not need to worry, financially."

Alison nodded, slowly. Yeah. Sure she wouldn't.

Because, apparently, her parents now believed that it rained hundred pound notes on Sundays and, therefore, there was no point in saving anything for the future.

"David appreciates our spending policies," Mum pointed out. She smiled down at him, now surrounded by nice, shiny new toys. "Look at how happy he is."

"So… we're taking financial advice," Alison clarified, "from my five year old baby brother." She sighed. "Course. That makes perfect sense, Mum."

The thing her parents didn't seem to realize was — Alison didn't really want money. Didn't want to be the posh kid at school with the new designer jackets and perfectly styled hair.

She wanted… oh, she didn't even know!

"Well, we can't buy it for you if you don't know what it is," Dad told her.

"It's not something you can buy, Dad," Alison replied.

It was… just… this feeling Alison got, when she was wandering around on the streets. Like… there had to be something more than this. Had to be something else to life other than money or 'high-society' or school or work or any of that!

She wanted the more. She wanted the purpose. A larger goal. A greater challenge.
Her parents certainly didn't understand that. At all.

"But what do you really want for your future, Alison?" Mum asked. "Career-wise. You'll be off at university in a year. You have to begin planning ahead."

"Well," Alison said, "I was planning to live in a tent on the M4, selling gourds to passing motorists. But now that we've moved into Posh-town, London, I've completely changed my life goals and am now striving to become Prime Minister of Great Britain."

Mum gave her a stern look.

"That," Alison continued. "Or to work in sewage management. I honestly can't decide."

The End

You have reached the end of "Judgment". This story is complete.

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