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[personal profile] daylight_darknight
Ok, this is the second fic in my We'll Meet Again series and my favourite thing I've written for Legends so far. I'm posting this so soon because I finished the first fic a couple weeks ago and then didn't get around to editing or posting it until after I finished the second. The third fic in the series will take awhile longer especially if I go and try to finish this other thing I'm trying to write instead. Anyway, you can probably see why this got separated into several fics because this one is written in a completely different style than the first.

Title: Don't Know Where, Don't Know When
Characters: Rip, Baby Martin, Baby Snart, Baby Jax, Young Mick, Young Sara, Lewis Snart, Quentin Lance, Jax's Mother
Rating/Warnings: G
Genre: Angst, Family, Friendship, Missing Scene
Word Count: 2300
Spoilers: Set during season 1 finale
Summary: Rip takes the team's younger selves home.

Rip picks them up from the Refuge only a few hours after they left them there, the two teenagers and the three babies.

Young Mick spent most of those hours wandering sullenly around the house's expansive grounds. At some point, he started a bonfire in a far corner of the property. It wasn't in any danger of spreading so Rip's mother let him do what he wanted though she wasn't too happy about everything that ended up in the fire.

Young Sara spent most of her time following after young Mick though she insisted on several occasions that she found him both disturbing and disgusting. Mick wasn't too pleased about this but nothing he said seemed to deter her. After a couple hours, she was also adding things to the bonfire.

The three babies spent their time doing the sort of things babies always do.

After some words with his mother, Rip loads all five into the Waverider. It isn't long before the teenagers start complaining and the babies start crying and it threatens to try what is left of Rip's patience, but he somehow manages to get them all strapped in and takes off into the time stream.

He takes Martin back first, his timeline having already shown signs of starting to set.

Rip arrives in Ivy Town in 1950, dons the same clothes he'd worn before, and takes baby Martin to the hospital just as he'd told Martin's father he would. He cradles the baby gently in his arms and tries not to remember how it felt to hold his own newborn son as he carries Martin into the building. The nurse at reception takes Rip's story at face value when he tells her of coming across the Steins at the side of the road and even believes him when he tells her he's a new ambulance driver she hasn't had the chance to meet yet.

The 1950s truly are a more innocent time.

Baby Martin seems to gaze at him with sleepy confusion as Rip hands him over and Rip can't help reaching out and stroking a comforting hand across the top of his head.

The nurse smiles at him as she cradles the baby. “He's certainly a gorgeous one,” she says. “It's going to get him into a lot of trouble with the ladies when he's older.”

Rip smiles back, a small lopsided smile. “Oh, I think it's his brains that are going to get him into the most trouble.”

The nurse frowns at him.

“There's an intelligent look in his eyes,” Rip says as way of explanation.

He stays just long enough to ensure Martin and his parents are reunited. It doesn't take long for the Steins to arrive. They enter the hospital with anxious, yet joyous, faces, Mr. Stein supporting his tired wife. The nurse at reception immediately comes to their aid helping Mrs. Stein into a wheelchair and fetching their baby. Rip watches from a hidden corner as Martin's father gets the chance to hold his son once more. There's a familiar look of awe and terror on the man's face, awe at the incredible new life he has created, terror at the fact this new life is now his responsibility.

Rip leaves the hospital with a hollow ache in his chest.

He takes Snart back next. Doing things chronologically is after all the easiest way.

Little Leonard seems so small and fragile. He starts crying when Rip picks him up, but after Rip lightly rocks him and whispers a few soothing words, he falls back asleep. Even for an experienced Time Master, there is something eerie about holding a newborn life that has only just begun when not so long ago you'd just seen it end. It is both poetic and horrific.

He pretends to be an orderly this time as he sneaks into the hospital in Central City in 1972. Not wanting Snart's absence to be noticed, he keeps the timing close, almost too close. He has to duck into a closet to avoid Sara and Kendra seeing him as they walk out cooing over baby Snart. He watches as they disappear down the corridor.

Sneaking into the nursery, Rip places Snart back in his hospital cot beside all the other babies. Baby Leonard wakes as he puts him down and screws up his face ready to cry once more.

“Shh, shh, shh,” Rip whispers, gently stroking the baby's cheek.

Leonard makes a couple mewling noises, and then settles back down.

Rip stays there a moment just watching him, the dozing newborn swaddled in dark blue.

“I'm sorry,” is all he says.

On his way out of the nursery, Rip almost runs into another man.

“There something wrong with him?” the man asks.

The lines deepen on Rip's forehead as he tries to figure out what the man is talking about.

“That's my boy,” says the man, pointing through the nursery window at Snart. “The doctor find something wrong with him or what?”

“No at all,” says Rip, shaking his head. “In fact, he's in excellent health. You have a very fine boy there.”

Seeming unconvinced, Snart's father only gives a grunt in reply and stares through the glass at his newborn son as if he were some kind of strange object he couldn't quite decide what to do with.

Rip finds his teeth gritting and his hands clenching into fists, and quickly leaves before he can give in to the urge to punch the man in the face.

The next one is Mick.

Unlike the babies, the teenagers need to take amnesia pills to ensure they won't remember the recent events.

“I'm not taking any pill,” says young Mick, a look of disgust on his face.

Rip can't say he's surprised. In fact, he's so unsurprised the moment Mick says no Rip's already reaching for the stun gun hidden in his coat.

With a flash of light, Mick crumples to the floor.

Thankfully, the substance in the pills can also be injected and Rip has a syringe prepared. The dose is carefully calculated to take away only the memories from after Mick escaped the fire that took his parents. There is a temptation there to go further back, to take away the memory of how Mick had been the one to set the fire in the first place, but what right does Rip have to take that from him. Memories make you who you are, both the good and the bad.

The Waverider arrives in Central City in 1990 several minutes after young Mick was originally rescued. The Waverider crew is gone and the Pilgrim too, but the firefighters are still there fighting the uncontrollable flames which are devouring what was once Mick's home.

Rip carries Mick to where he was before, carefully setting him down among the tall grass a couple dozen feet from the burning house. He sits nearby somewhere he's unlikely to be seen but where he can still keep an eye on the sleeping Mick. He can see the fire from there too as it continues its destructive course. There is something memorizing about the flames he admits, but he knows he'll never see the same beauty in them that Mick does.

Ten minutes pass before a couple of firefighters finally spot Mick.

They rush towards him, one tearing off his gloves and falling to his knees beside Mick.

“Goddamn,” he says as he feels the pulse at his neck. “He's alive.”

“Must have gotten out earlier and passed out from the smoke,” says the other.

The first firefighter shakes his head. “Poor kid. Both his parents are goners. I hope he's got someone left to look after him.”

He doesn't. Rip knows this. He knows that Mick's grandparents will refuse to take him in and he'll spent the rest of his teenage years in and out of foster homes and juvie.

The firefighters carry Mick away and Rip leaves the smouldering house behind him.

It's Jax's turn next.

Rip dresses in blue scrubs hoping that, though rare, a male nurse won't seem too unusual when he returns to the Central City hospital in 1993. Baby Jax is restless and squirms several times in Rip's arms despite Rip's efforts to calm him. He hopes to drop the baby off in the nursery just like he had with Snart, but he spots the Pilgrim prowling around and knows it isn't safe yet. There's only one other place he can leave the baby so he asks a passing nurse if she knows what room Mrs. Jackson is in.

Jax's mother lies tired and crumpled in her hospital bed but her whole face lights up when she sees Rip enter with her baby.

“There's my little Jefferson,” she says.

Baby Jax starts squirming even more at the sound of his mother's voice.

She laughs in delight. “Look at him go.”

“It seems you're going to have quite the fighter on your hands,” says Rip as he hands the baby over.

“Just like his father,” says Mrs. Jackson smiling fondly, her son finally settling down now that he's cradled in her arms.

Rip's expression wavers and he swallows back the lump that suddenly appears in his throat.

“I hope you don't mind me bringing him,” he says. “I... I just thought he could use his mother.”

Mrs. Jackson shakes her head. “Not at all,” she says. “Not at all. Truthfully, I was already starting to miss the little guy.”

“Well, then,” says Rip and he turns to leave.

Jax's mother reaches out and catches his arm before he can go.

“Thanks for bringing my baby back to me,” she says.

Rip's expression threatens to falter once more but he manages to keep the polite smile on his face as he says, “You're welcome.”

He has brought her baby safely back to her, twice in fact, though it would mean more if it wasn't his fault her son had been in danger in the first place.

He leaves Mrs. Jackson swept up in the love for her newborn son and with no idea that she will be a widow in less than two weeks

Last of all is Sara.

Unlike Mick, young Sara actually takes the amnesia pill willingly though she gazes warily at it before she does so.

“As long as this helps get me home,” she says before she swallows the pill.

That's the easy part.

Unfortunately, the uproar the Pilgrim caused at the Starling City police station in 2007 makes it impossible to sneak back inside. The building and the area surrounding it are swarming with armed police desperately seeking the child of one of their own and the mysterious woman who attacked them.

The amnesia pill also has a sedative effect and it isn't long before Rip is carrying young Sara too. This makes her the fifth member of his team that he's carried in his arms over the course of a few hours.

Former team, he reminds himself.

Unwilling to abandon the unconscious Sara somewhere and unable to come up with a better plan, Rip decides to go for the direct approach. He runs towards the police station clutching Sara in his arms and yelling for help.

Every police officer and detective in hearing range immediately rushes towards him.

Rip does his best to put forth the air of a panicked and bewildered civilian. “I found her down the street,” he says switching to an American accent to be on the safe side. “I think she passed out or something.”

It doesn't take long for word to get through to Detective Lance. He emerges from the police station with the familiar look of a terrified father on his face.

“Oh, my baby,” he cries. “My poor baby.” He takes her from Rip demanding to know what happened.

Rip shrugs and shakes his head keeping up the look of wide-eyed confusion. “I don't know,” he says. “I just found her.”

“Thank you,” says Sara's father gazing up at him. “Thank you.”

The sudden desire to run away courses through Rip because this is the third parent-child reunion he's seen recently and it's making the aching pit in his chest feel like it's about to swallow him whole.

Detective Lance starts to ask where Rip found her when Sara stirs and his attention goes back to his daughter.

“Daddy?” she says as she opens her eyes, her sleepy voice full of confusion. “What...?”

“Shhh,” her father says. “It's okay now. You're safe. I've got you.”

The other police officers ask Rip where he found Sara and whether he saw the woman who attacked them. Rip makes up a story of coming across Sara's fallen form in an alley and of seeing a woman matching the Pilgrim's description walking away. Almost half the police force takes off in the direction he points them. The other half are mostly concerned with Sara so none of them notice when Rip quietly slips away.

The Waverider seems much too quiet when Rip returns and his footsteps echo much too loudly as he walks down the empty corridors. He's sure the ship never used to be quite so big either, or so cold. When he reaches the bridge, he stands there staring at the semi-circle of empty chairs, the silence an oppressive force surrounding him.

“Gideon,” he says after a moment, his voice cracking, the noise like a gunshot in the silence.

“Yes, Captain,” the A.I. replies, her cheerful tone a sharp contrast to his.

Taking a deep breath, Rip lets his eyes fall shut; then he shakes his head and opens them once more. “It's nothing,” he says. “We need to get back to work.”

“Of course, Captain.”

He takes his seat at the front of the room and places his hand on the piloting controls. Behind him the empty chairs loom coldly, sharp reminders of what once had been, as he jumps the ship into the time stream.

We'll meet again
Don't know where
Don't know when
But I know we'll meet again some sunny day
Page generated Sep. 25th, 2017 06:53 pm
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