herlady_ain (herlady_ain) wrote,

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Part Five, "To Err Is Human..."

Well, here it is!  The end of my massive story.  Thank you for reading if you've come this far, hallo to all of my RL and Eljay friends who are here because what I was doing was outed to them and their curiosity got the best of them!  Thank you

talkingtoatwigfor working so hard and getting this done so fast!  I couldn't have done it without you.  I hope I've done the 4 or 5 women who inspired "Reggie" justice.  =)
Previous Bits:
Takeaway Girl
Dire Consequences
A Very Bad Idea

Death by Torchwood

The scene at the Hub was a nightmare. There were people with little-to-no security clearance everywhere. After one of the medical staff checked on Tosh they ordered a third ambulance. Ianto’s head wound made him Priority 1 and he was rushed out on a gurney within seconds of the team arriving with Jack in tow. This time Owen’s gunshot wound was more serious, plus he had a lot of other scrapes and bruises from earlier that needed cleaning or stitching. He was loaded up next.
Reggie, Tosh, and Gwen sat amongst the rubble and waited for the last ambulance crew to arrive. No one said a word and even the ambient noises of the Hub seemed hushed, the room was silent. Torchwood Emergency Protocol 7 dispatched the ambulances without sirens, and cancelled the dispatch of any police investigators.
When the final team arrived Tosh was examined and loaded up with a concussion, and a probable fracture of left wrist. Surprisingly, Gwen had emerged nearly unscathed. She had a split lip, and some minor bruising on her throat, but otherwise she was unharmed. She refused any medical assistance. Despite Reggie’s protestations they refused to leave without checking her status. She was deemed in deep shock, despite the lack of wounds on her body; they insisted on taking her along with Tosh. Gwen watched as Reggie was helped into the lift. Then she was alone. She initialized the process of shutting down the Hub.
TEP7 established a secure area at Cardiff A & E. All other patients and unauthorized personnel were relocated to other parts of the hospital. All members of hospital staff interacting with people brought in under TEP7 were forbidden from asking any questions not absolutely critical to care. Each patient was assigned a number. Within 20 minutes of arrival, Patient 1 was in surgery- a CT scan indicated swelling in his brain and a ruptured spleen. The spleen was removed and a shunt was inserted into the head. Patient 2 had deep lacerations on his right hand, a partially dislocated elbow, and a gunshot wound requiring the removal of two bullet fragments. All objects removed from a patient brought in under TEP 7 were to be immediately turned over to ranking Torchwood staff. Patient 3 had a concussion and a hairline fracture of the left wrist; the wrist was set in plaster and the patient would remain overnight for observation. Patient 4 had no visible external injuries. Further examination to search for internal injuries was not allowed by patient. Patient 4 exhibited signs of severe shock; patient received an intravenous saline drip to stabilize blood pressure and a sedative.
Gwen arrived just as they had finished sedating Reggie.   She checked that she and Tosh were resting and went to find the others. She found Owen and Ianto at the opposite end of the hallway. Owen was bound to the bed using cross body restraints so as not to risk damage to either of his arms. He pale and sickly looking, and covered in bruises. The staff had been instructed to keep him sedated.
She glanced over to where Jack had pulled a chair right up next to Ianto’s bed and lowered the railing on one side. Jack’s hand was entwined with Ianto’s and he was resting his head on the edge of the bed. Ianto’s head was heavily bandaged, and he looked much older than his 25 years. Gwen pulled a chair up next to Owen’s bed. She kissed him on the forehead and settled in for the night- she held his hand.
Clean Up:
On Saturday morning Reggie stood on the roof of Cardiff A & E and watched the sun rise for the first time in almost two months. She was smoking a cigarette, which was unfortunate because it was a habit she certainly didn’t have before she met Doctor Owen Harper.
“Your mother would kill you if she saw that.” 
“Hullo Jack.” She put out the rest of the cigarette on the masonry.
Jack handed her a folio with the Torchwood logo on the front and the word ‘CLASSIFIED’ in bold letters across the seal. “Inside you’ll find security codes, protocols, and passwords, the location of the office. There should also be a key to your new flat, a driver’s license, a passport, bank and credit cards, and a bus pass. Everything you need to start a whole new life.” He also handed her the same pistol from days earlier.
Reggie took another cigarette out and went to light it. At the last minute she thought better and chucked the whole pack off the roof. “My mother survived sleeping with Owen Harper only to die from those things; I’ll not suffer the same fate.” She smiled at Jack, and ran her hands over the dark cold metal of the gun. “Gwen thought you brought this to shoot me. Tosh figured it was so I could shoot myself.”
“What’d you tell them?” He looked at her curiously.
“Not a thing.” She squinted against the quickly increasing daylight. 
“That’s my girl.” He flashed her a proud smile. “Torchwood 2 has no idea what they’re getting.”
“No, no, I think he’s expecting a nice little tea-girl/assistant, somebody like Ianto.” She watched Jack out of the corner of her eye to see if he’d react. “How is he?”
“Doing well, felt spry enough this morning to smart off when I sexually harassed him. He’ll be temporarily moving in to your old room. I guess I’ll be taking over Owen’s cot.” He chuckled.
“How is Owen?”
“He was none too pleased to hear who’d shot him…”
“Yeah… I thought he’d be upset about that.”
“I told him you owed it to him for all the trouble he caused you.”
Reggie sighed. “Yeah.”
“He’s going to be ok. God knows I wanted to kill him, after what he did to Ianto…” Jack’s voiced faded out.   “But, Gwen and Tosh were convinced that something else was going on and wanted to run additional tests. Tosh thinks we’re seeing the first ever evidence of long term side effects from a Weevil bite. She’s very excited. I still think we’re seeing the long term side effects of him being a narcissistic asshole.”
“Can you give him something for me?” She asked tentatively.
“What is it?”
“Just a letter. Nothing important… Goodbye, stuff like that.”
“I’ll have to read it first.” 
“Knock yourself out.” She withdrew a folded sheet of paper from her pocket and handed it to Jack. He opened it and read it in silence.
“You’re sure you want me to give this to him? It’s awfully nice.”
“Yeah, I’m sure. What will you tell them?”
“A lie- Something about Central coming to get you and assigning you a new life without telling me… I haven’t got it exactly thought out yet. All information regarding your new identity and location will be put in secure archives, along with anything left over from your previous life. Poof, you disappear. Harry Houdini would be jealous.”
“Well, that’s neat and tidy.” She cleared her throat. “I guess this is the end, Jack. Please give my love and say goodbye to everyone.” She wiped a couple of stray tears from her eyes. “I’m really going to miss you all; I hope we don’t meet again.”
“Good luck Reggie.” He said without looking at her; she turned and left. 
Loose Ends:
Jack had insisted on archiving Reggie’s belongings himself, a prospect which worried Ianto for many reasons but he was really in no condition to argue. Gwen had kindly boxed and stored all of the books and notes, and random belongings that had been abandoned as they fled from the Hub three weeks ago.
What was left over was Jack’s responsibility: a mobile phone, and wallet containing her driver’s license, credit and bank cards, an expired gym membership, and a couple of student Ids, her passport and international documents- the entirety of her existence. To the container Jack added all the medical reports and analyses regarding her. The last remaining item on his desk was a faded and brittle envelope addressed to Doctor Owen Harper, at Torchwood’s cover address, in neat even type. For the third time since his arrival at Torchwood 3, Jack opened the envelope and removed the single sheet of paper within:
My Dear Owen,
             Yesterday was the celebration of my daughter Regina’s 4th Birthday, and today I found out that I have terminal cancer. You were right; I smoked too much. I had foolishly hoped, when I found myself in the 1970’s, that I would be able to bide my time, and find you again, with a whole life of new adventures of which to tell you. It seems now that life has played yet another cruel trick on me…
Jack skimmed to the bottom of the page.
I love you Owen Harper; I hope you can forgive me.
Mrs. Diane Holmes-Martelli
Jack refolded the letter and gently slid it back into the envelope. He placed the envelope on top of the other documents in the archive box, secured the lid with the special padlock and slid it into the safe. The intercom buzzed.
“Yes Ianto?”
“The clock is ticking, it’s your move.”
Jack smirked and stifled the urge to saw something lewd; after all, Ianto was still recovering, and Jack would simply have to be satisfied with games of chess. “I’m on my way.”
Owen sat on the couch in his flat, his right arm in a sling. In his left hand he held the piece of paper that Jack had given him that morning. It was a letter from Reggie. He had memorized what it said hours ago, but he couldn’t stop reading it.
Dear Owen,
             I have to apologize for shooting you. I didn’t want to- probably why I missed the first time- but I had no choice. I hope you understand that when you go to work each day. 
            I’m sorry I left without saying goodbye. It simply was not allowed. I’m afraid this letter will have to do that job; it seems the women in my family are always leaving you like this. I would have loved for us to have more time together- I wish I could say I knew the man who my mother fell in love with, but the truth is, after all that’s happened I hardly know you at all. Maybe that’s what’s best for both of us. 
I hope that one day you’ll stop feeling miserable when you think about my mother. Thank you for saving my life and for the lovely night out. Take care of the others for me, and be nice to them. I’d ask you to do it as a tribute to my mother, but truth is you owe them that courtesy. As long as I’m allowed to keep my memories, I’ll never forget you.
             I forgive you~ REM
Owen set the letter on the table and picked up the glass of whiskey he’d poured himself when he got home.   He set it back down without taking a drink, rested his head on the back of the couch, and watched the sun rise.
~~**~~            ~~**~~            ~~**~~            ~~**~~            ~~**~~

Last but no least: Thank you to

kimmi_87, libbyalice, bryoney, lady_kirroyale, sunstar77, tiggerbrasilf, and  darklady7for all your encouraging comments throughout!
Tags: death by torchwood, fic, owen harper, to err is human, torchwood
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