Title: Primeval InterSeason - Predestination Paradox
Sequel to: Primeval Season Two
Universe: Time Child Series
Characters: Chloe/Ben, Dr. Lindsay Jenkins
Disclaimer: Don't own
Summary: After emerging from the mysterious anomaly that rescued her from a grisly fate in the cage room, Chloe finds she has traveled back three years into the past. She's alone, injured, scared, and not sure what to do. Then she runs into Ben.
Chloe awoke to the scent of eggs, bacon, and coffee.
Obviously she'd died and gone to heaven.
Groaning, the blonde stretched as she opened her eyes, yawning. For a split second she froze in terror, wondering where she was, and then the events of the night before returned to her like the memory of a movie, and as she gazed around the bedroom she could only guess that Ben had moved her there after she'd conked out. She pulled the sheet from her body, seeing herself dressed in the same dirty clothes from the day before, and cringing at the dirt accumulated on the once pristine sheets. He really should have just left her sleeping on the sofa. She doubted he'd be able to get the mess out of these sheets. Then again, she could have dirtied up his sofa as well, and it was easier to buy new sheets instead of a new sofa.
Taking in a deep breath, Chloe turned to slip out of bed, finding a glass of water and a teacup with two pills in it over a note. Intrigued she reached for the note, sliding it from under the teacup, Ben's scribble informing her that she was to take the pills at the hour specified. And if she woke up on her own to take them. Her gaze went to the clock, finding it only ten minutes from the time specified, and figured a few minutes couldn't do much harm. She took the pills and put back down the glass of water, pausing when she noticed a book on the other side of the night table. It seemed old and quite worn.
Reaching for it, Chloe paused at the title.
The Time Traveler's Wife.
She blinked in surprise, thumbing through the pages, realizing that this book had seen its wear. Some of the pages had been bent back, while parts of the text had been softly underlined in pencil. It was all quite intriguing, especially since she couldn't see Ben as the science-fiction type.
There were more and more layers to this timeline's Ben that fascinated Chloe.
A knock sounded on the door. "Are you awake?"
"Yeah!" Chloe turned towards the door.
It opened, Ben peeking his head in before entering, holding a tray that smelled too heavenly to be fair. "How are you feeling?"
"Better, thank you." Chloe smiled up at him, running her fingers through her hair self-consciously, knowing she looked like a mess. "You really didn't have to give up your bed."
He didn't answer that, instead reaching down to place the tray on her lap. "Uncle Lindsay is coming over in a little to see how your foot is, and he'll bring some crutches so you can get around."
"He didn't have to do that-you don't either." And yet her mouth salivated at the breakfast served her.
"I left a change of clothes that should fit you in the bathroom." He surprised her by saying.
She kept her gaze on her food as she raised her fork. "You sure your girlfriend won't mind me using her clothes?"
There was silence before Ben cleared his throat. "She left."
And yet he'd kept the clothes?
Chloe fought the jealousy curling in her throat, reminding herself that this wasn't her Ben, she didn't have any right over him.
Eating silently, Chloe barely noticed when Ben slipped out to give her some privacy. She ate the food, barely tasting it, before finally putting the tray on the table and hobbling towards the bathroom. The bath did wonders to her, making her feel somewhat more human and less of a street rat, and when she slipped into the jeans and shirt left for her she found they were definitely her size. Chloe gazed at herself in the mirror, wondering what Ben's ex had looked like. A snide, horrible side of her hoped that she wasn't as attractive as Chloe herself, but considering that the blonde had never considered herself a great beauty she doubted it.
The image of a Lana Lang look-alike taunted her brain.
Closing her eyes, Chloe took in a deep breath before letting it out, opening her eyes. She had to go in there, thank Ben for all he'd done for her, and then she had to leave. Already she'd spent way too much time with him in the past. A chance meeting with a woman in the street he might forget, but this had gone beyond that. There was no way that the Ben in her time wouldn't remember her now, and that would add to too many questions. Only the gods knew whatever had changed in the future now thanks to her weakness in accepting help from him. She needed to butch up and find a way back to her own time. She wasn't sure how exactly, but she needed to think of something, to stop dallying and letting herself be taken care of. She needed to be strong, needed to be like her father, and in a sense, like her mother.
Helen Cutter would know what to do had she been in her situation, and that rankled Chloe. She would not let an insane woman get the best of her. She was going to outsmart her mother at what could possibly be a game, and find a way back home. That anomaly which had brought her here had been too exact, too quick, to be a mere coincidence, and it'd taken her to the cage room when others took people to other times and places and-.
Chloe's eyes widened.
The cage room!
The anomaly that'd brought her could reopen-and if it did it would reopen in the cage room.
How had she been so dumb as to not think about it before?
She needed to get to the place and-.
But it was day...and the place was obviously in the middle of construction-which meant that there would be workers there during the day. The best chance she had of getting back there undetected was to go at night. And wait as long as she had to.
Relieved that she at least had a semblance of a plan, Chloe made it out of the bathroom and bedroom, pausing in the doorway as she noticed Ben and really looked at him without the distraction of heavenly food. He wore a loose, sleeveless muscleshirt, jogging pants, and his hair was tousled, completely messy. He sat at the small table and drank what smelt like coffee while reading the newspaper. Everything about him as a man called to everything female in her body, the shock of the intensity nearly crippling her as her hand reached out to grab the bedroom's doorknob for something to hold onto.
For a moment she was transported back to time, shocked stiff by the sensation of being in the right timeline, before the anomalies ruined everything. How many times had she emerged from the bedroom to find a scene like this one? Ben would always wake up before her and be back from his morning jog by the time she got up. He'd be drinking coffee, reading the newspaper, and commenting to himself about whatever caught his fancy in the print that day. He'd then smile when he noticed her and she'd slip into his lap, kissing the taste of coffee from his lips before finally sliding away to get some of her own which would always be waiting for her.
Ben's dark gaze rose to her, the cup of coffee to his lips, the newspaper still covering a portion of his face.
"Hey." He quickly lowered the newspaper and coffee, standing, almost as if to attention, as he gazed at her.
"I forgot the tray in the bedroom." She suddenly remembered, turning to go back.
"That's fine, I got it while you were bathing." He replied, stopping her hasty retreat. "How are you feeling?"
"A little sore, but it's a lot better than it was last night." Chloe leaned against the wall, keeping her weight off of her injured foot. "I should be out of your hair in no time, don't worry."
Instead of being pleased, a look of disappointment flashed over his face as he clasped his hands behind his back and stood in a stance so military it shocked her. "I'm not worried. It's not a bother."
"Surely you'll have to go to work soon."
"I'm on leave for a couple of days." He replied, his gaze lowering before he raised it to eye her. "It started yesterday, actually."
Of all the coincidences.
Chloe's eyes narrowed slightly as she eyed him, asking him the one thing she'd promised she wouldn't because she didn't want him asking her. "What do you do?"
Ben eyed her before smirking, for some reason terribly amused. "Accounting."
Chloe gasped, eyes widening.
For a second she felt deja vu as once more their conversation seemed to parallel one she'd had with him in the original timeline.
"Oh?" Her voice trembled and she cleared it, trying to keep her heart from racing so terribly, her breathing from accelerating as she recited her lines. "How terribly...exciting."
He shrugged. "Keeps the bills paid. Keeps me busy too. This is the first vacation I've taken."
She brought a hand to her chest, her control on herself slowly slipping from her fingers as that sense of deja vu grew as he responded like her own Ben had responded, word for word. "So...what does an accountant do on his free time?"
There was a moment before Ben relaxed from his tense position, a smile starting to creep onto his features as he gazed at her intently. "Would you like to have dinner with me tonight and find out?"
Chloe couldn't look away from him, her breathing erratic, tears prickling at her eyes as false hope began to tease her. "Dinner
"Yes. Dinner." Ben replied, taking a step towards her, reaching out and softly brushing a strand of hair out of her face and behind her ear. "You can pick the place, and just give me directions."
The tears welled up in her eyes as she looked up at him, confusion growing, choking her, leaving her unable to speak as the tears now silently made their way down her cheek.
He gazed deep into her eyes, his hand cupping her jaw, his thumb brushing away a tear.
Suddenly a knock at the door broke into the atmosphere, breaking into the moment, drawing them apart.
Chloe nearly plastered herself against the wall, confused and scared and hating herself for her stupid hope.
Ben turned towards the door and gave a little growl as he walked towards it, peering through the peephole before deactivating an alarm and opening the door to his uncle. "You're early."
"Morning to you too sunshine." Dr. Lindsay Jenkins snorted, breezing past his nephew, gaze finding Chloe. "Good. You look much better. The rest did wonders for your colors."
There was still that sensation that she knew this man from somewhere, but Chloe pushed it away and smiled at him. "Hey doc. I love your meds."
He smiled. "Humor. Always a good sign." He motioned to the crutches he was carrying. "Have these. I broke my leg some years back and I've been trying to find a way of getting rid of them without just dumping them in the garbage."
"Thank you." Chloe smiled, accepting the crutches with a smile, leaning against them. "How are you this morning?"
"Fine, my shift doesn't begin until later so I wanted to come over and see how your ankle's doing." Without any preamble he motioned to the sofa. "Shall we?"
Nodding, Chloe made her way to the sofa and with his help sat down, watching the doctor as he sat on an ottoman and examined her ankle.
"The swelling is still there but it's gone down somewhat. Your fever has also broken thankfully. How does this feel?"
"Thought so. You're still very tender." He hummed, examining her foot, before frowning slightly when his beeper went off. Lindsay checked it, sighing. "Have to go, there's been an emergency and they need me."
"Of course." Chloe straightened as he stood and left her foot elevated and resting on the ottoman. "Thank you again."
"No problem dear. Just keep that foot elevated." He replied, heading towards the door. "See you Ben."
The door closed.
Chloe gazed at her foot, desperate to keep things from that murky, torturous confusion it'd been before. "You know, I forgot to ask, where does your uncle work?"
"Uncle Lindsay?" Ben locked the door behind the man. "He's a doctor at the Royal London Hospital."
"Royal London Hospital?" Chloe wondered why that sounded so familiar, and then she remembered, smiling. "I've been there before!"
"You have?" He asked curiously.
"Yes." She nodded with a smile. "Stephen and I were in an accident and-."
"Stephen?" Ben froze by the door.
Chloe gulped, lowering her gaze to her foot as she thought about Stephen, feeling horribly guilty that he must be mourning with her father over her supposed death while she was here salivating over Ben. She was a terrible, selfish person. "We were in an accident..." with Ben.
Her eyes widened as she realized that.
That was where she'd first seen the Ben from this universe/timeline.
At Royal London Hospital.
"Who's Stephen?" Ben asked softly.
Chloe's heart raced.
Royal London Hospital.
That's where she'd met Ben.
That-that was where she'd met Lindsay!
He'd been the ER doctor who'd tended to her!
Dr. Lindsay Jenkins had tended to her!
Chloe's eyes widened. "Oh my god