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Title: Broadchurch: Sins Of The Father

Date of commencement: September 22 2013

Date of completion: December 24 2014

Series: Broadchurch, a sequel to the original, and following on from Life Without Joe

Rating: M

Authors: tkel_paris and tardis_mole

Summary: Two years after Danny's death, life is slowly getting back to normal in Broadchurch. But Hardy's happy life is about to be turned upside down by a spectre from the past he had hoped had been laid to rest. Someone from his past wants to talk to him, someone wants revenge, someone wants to see him ruined. But it's not one 'someone'. But first, he must face the girl in his garden.

Disclaimer: We own nothing, but this is based on Broadchurch by Chris Chibnal, with added clues from the novel by Erin Kelly. We gain nor financial benefit nor gratuities, only the enjoyment from writing and working together on this epic journey, shared for the enjoyment of others.

Dedication: Chris Chibnal, long time friend. bas_math_girl, for her beta. And each other for hopefully not ruining each other's lives for too long during the writing part.

Warning: If you have not watched Broadchurch in its entirety, do not read this. We mean it. You will be spoiled. Stop and go back. Now. Ideally you have seen the entire show, not just what was aired on BBC America if you live on that side of the pond, but this is understandable in either case. Also, if you have not read tardis_mole's Life Without Joe, that's okay. It's possible to read this without reading that, if you're not on Moley's approved list. You'll probably find this makes a little more sense if you have read it, but you should be fine without it. Take the time to read Erin Kelly’s novelization, if you can, as it provided certain details that helped with writing this. Though you won’t need to rely on it.

Authors' Notes: See Episode One, Part One. They're a bit long to include in each post.

(Updated at 16:47 on Jan 2, 2015 to correct one oversight.)

/=/=/=/=/=/

Previously...

Episode Six, Part Eight: Waiting Room

“I failed them both,” Hardy realised. “I could have done something!” He slammed both fists into the table, almost rattling it to pieces.

“Stop it,” snapped Ellie, significantly gentler than her usual habit, while SOCO removed the letter for further study. “It's Tess's doing, and Bruce's, and this Godfrey. You didn't cause any of it.”

“If I'd fought harder for her, if I hadn't insisted that Ben wasn't mine, they might be living here with me! Safe and out of reach of this predator and that brute!”

“Alec,” Ellie spoke, cutting into his rant. “Fuck the rules,” she grumbled and hugged her husband, and tacked a ‘sir’ on the end.

Neither Sandra or Elaine made any comment.

Elaine was the first to speak. “Is Ben going into care?”

Hardy shook his head and let go of Ellie, giving her arm a grateful squeeze. “The staff at the hospital already found unexplained injuries. They have been in contact with Children’s Services. I spoke to Mrs. Henshaw. She told me that they had no grounds to remove Daisy or Ben from their mother, but would pass on my concerns to the local office in Sandbrook. I wish I’d had this note to show her; it might have gone differently. At the hospital, neither Tess nor Bruce Stratton have been permitted to be alone with either child.”

Ellie had to voice her thought, but she whispered it. “Daisy mentioned Hailey, and Hailey mentioned Daisy had been a target, and now Connelly has listed several more girls. Don't grooming rings usually seduce the girls they lure in?”

Sandra sucked in a deep breath. “If this Godfrey and his cohorts have worked with the same pattern we have seen in other cases, I'm afraid it’s a strong possibility.”

They were not quiet enough to keep Hardy from overhearing, and he let out a cry.

Ellie knelt beside him and murmured into his ear for a long moment. Finally she turned it into real words. “We're going to find Daisy. There was no blood in her room other than on the sanitary pads. She got out of that room alive. If she was attacked, they didn't succeed. She'll turn up alive and we'll get her away from her dangerous situation. Sandbrook are on the verge of breaking that ring. The danger will end. You'll have you daughter back.”

He choked as he clutched her back. “What if Social Services thinks I can't handle them? Money is already tight.”

“They don't split families based on income. And you've got a record of being a great dad. Tess's word is the only thing against you, and hers has been shown to be full of lies. Maggie and Olly are on the way to proving that she was at fault at Sandbrook, not you. And then nothing will stand in the way. It's going to happen.”

“If we get Daisy back alive,” he sobbed. “If she's...” He couldn't finish the thought.

So she stayed put. He needed her. She would trust that their team would manage without them for a bit. They had to find something to help them.

Suddenly someone came in. “Sarge? You're not going to believe this. Nigel Carter drove up to the hospital. His passenger was Daisy Hardy.”

Hardy gasped and bolted to upright sitting. “You sure?”

“Positive. She was in good health. They let her visit her brother.”

“Did she look injured?”

“Aside from the cuts due to tripping up in the dark, no. But she was bleeding heavily, feminine bleeding. She was faint and dizzy, but otherwise she was fine.”

Hardy burst to his feet.

“Wait!” cried Ellie, running after him. “You're not driving! I am! And someone release Connelly!” she added over her shoulder as an afterthought. Now that they knew where Daisy was there was no need to keep him locked up.

He did not make a motion of acknowledgement, but he did let her get behind the wheel. He knew enough to know that he would not be able to focus, and she knew the streets at night far better than he did. She also used the siren, she had never had the opportunity to since becoming CID - one of the perks not given to plain clothes - to ensure that they got there as fast as possible.

Even after being in the glove compartment for six years, it worked a dream. Not that there was much traffic to move out of the way at 1am.

/=/=/=/=/

“Brian, what did you find?” Elaine asked as people began to fetch coffee and gear up for the next phase.

“Several full prints, and an overlap of several others,” Brian replied. “I’m waiting for the computer to separate them. One was DI Hardy’s, one was Daisy Hardy’s, in fact there are several of hers. I found one that I can’t identify, but I also found one of a Maureen Harvey.”

“Who’s Maureen Harvey?”

“She’s a nurse up at the hospital, Children’s Ward. She had her car stolen last year and her prints were taken to eliminate her from the crime scene.”

“And we still have her IDENT1?”

“Standard procedure to keep the records, indefinitely if needed,” he explained. “Mrs. Harvey hasn’t requested their removal. In fact, I recall her telling me to leave it in the PNC, just in case her ex got to her and we could only identify her by her fingerprints.”

“Charming.”

“So was he,” Brian intoned. “He’s serving life for aggravated assault and battery, along with attempted murder.”

Elaine nodded. “Good point. So we can assume Daisy got these pieces of paper from the nurse to write the letter to her father.”

“We can ask,” he suggested. The screen came up with another match. “Got it. The fourth print belongs to Chloe Latimer. I think we’ve established provenance.”

“Good work.”

/=/=/=/=/

“Daisy!”

She looked up at the welcome sound. “Dad!”

They kept their voices quiet in the dimly lit ward. Ben had been moved to a room behind the nurse’s station. Hardy pushed passed the two nurses on duty and clutched his daughter to him. “Thank god!”

She cried, returning the embrace just as tightly and breathing in the smells that she had almost forgotten how to describe. “Dad,” she choked.

He barely drew back enough to look her in the eyes. “Daisy, were you attacked?”

She slowly shook her head. “This bloke broke into the hotel room and warned me to leave. He said someone was coming to hurt me. I told him I could look after myself. If anyone tried anything, they wouldn’t get very far. I’d knocked him out. I remembered those self-defence moves you taught me.”

He found a small smile of relief and cupped her face in his hands. “Good girl. The man who broke in is in custody. But why are you fighting the staff in A&E? You need to be examined.”

“Dad, it's just my-”

She cut herself off as she moaned suddenly.

He eyed her carefully, watching her face turn increasingly grey. “Daisy? Whatever's wrong is a bit more serious than some simple disease. You know that.”

“I'm fine, I'm just... tired... and needed to see Ben. I have to watch out for him. No one else will...”

And with that she passed out in her father's arms. Only his grip on her kept her from hitting the floor.

“Daisy!” he cried out. “God, no! Stay with me,” he coaxed.

The nurses crowed in and gently pushed him out of the way. One of them hit the night alarm, turning a string of red lights flashing through the hospital and an alarm in the Crash unit in A&E. A doctor appeared within seconds and then another, and behind him came a porter with an empty trolley.

Hardy stood frozen to the spot hearing phrases he vaguely remembered from when he lay dying; low BP and bradycardia. But there were others; haemorrhaging and vascular crash. Daisy had internal bleeding? Suddenly his mind conjured an image of the body of Luiz Gotleib. And he could see blood begin to pool around Daisy’s lower body.

He watched them lift his now lifeless daughter into the trolley and wheel her away. They had left the blood. A pool of it. Her blood. Her life. All over the floor. He suddenly felt faint. Stepping back against the wall, he sank into his special place, culled up like a foetus, where he was safe. His breaths sobbed ineffectually in and out of his mouth.

Without warning, Ellie was in his field of vision, asking him if he was ok, but the blood rushing in his ears was making it hard to hear her. After a moment, the darkness that had crowded in began to dissipate and the pounding in his ears lessened. The blood on the floor had been cleaned up and there was no sign of it.

Alec uncurled his arms a little as he stared at her with tears in his eyes. “Please,” he whispered. “Please, don't let it be too late. I can't lose her. Not now.”

No one answered him.

/=/=/=/=/

Chief Super Elaine Jenkinson was on the phone. She, Hardy and Ellie were all standing in her office. They were waiting for her to finish her call with her superiors, while Hardy was waiting for word on his daughter’s condition. Secretly, he would rather they just left him at the hospital to wait no matter how long.

“We're good...? Thank you, sir. That's a relief to everyone concerned.” She hung up and met Hardy's gaze. “DI, we're now officially clear to bring you back on the cases.”

“Wait a minute. You told me this last night.”

Elaine looked uncomfortable. “That was unofficially,” she admitted. She paused for a moment, still holding his gaze. “The truth is that we cleared you several days ago.”

Alec turned a glare on Ellie. “And why wasn't I told?!”

“Think about it, Alec. Whoever killed Sarah Wallace, Luiz Gotlieb and Louise Dusk went out of their way to make you look guilty, to tie these cases to your time in Sandbrook. I was concerned that if we let it out too soon that we knew you were innocent then the killer would either flee or we'd have another dead girl on our hands. So as much as I hated to do it, I recommended by then that you remain out of the loop so if the killer was watching your movements, there wouldn't be anything to suggest you knew you were no longer under suspicion. I'm sorry, but I believed it was the best choice.”

He looked at her in pain for a long moment, but slowly let it go on a loud exhale. His lips tightened for a moment before he relaxed. “You're right. I'm sorry.”

“Not you fault. It’s part of the reason I slept at my desk. I hate lying to you and I can’t do it for long, because you’re too bloody good. I felt like I was in an impossible situation and was dragging you further into it.”

Jenkinson cleared her throat. “We're now hoping you might be able to piece together some information we haven't figured out the connections yet.”

Alec shifted instantly into DI mode. “What do I need to know about the case? I’d only got half way through when the team was called in.”

Ellie folded her arms. “The connection is the girls’ friendship from years ago. It created an instant impression that you might be tied to the murders. But we're dealing with more than one killer.”

“I thought that was obvious,” Hardy spoke. “The cause of death was very different.”

“It gets worse.”

Hardy closed his eyes.

ĐĐ

To be continued...

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