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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.

/=/=/=/=/=/

Previously...

Episode Eight. Part Three: From Pillar To Post

Chloe Latimer's phone went off. She had it out already, checking Twitter for news, not that any of the Hardys were one for Twitter. She knew that much, but someone else might post something. She opened the text, sent from Ellie.

Her instant squeal startled Christopher, sitting in the kitchen with Liz. He began crying at once.

“Chloe!” Beth and Mark scolded, stepping into the living room to remind Chloe of their home's rules.

But she almost jumped into her mother's arms, shrieking with joy. “DI Hardy got custody!”

Beth gasped and grabbed the phone to see for herself. Mark plucked it up so he could see, too. When their eyes confirmed it they joined Chloe's cries as they clutched each other in relief. At once they were bouncing for joy.

This was the happiest, the best news they had had for a long time. Within seconds, each was on their phones, dialling and sharing the news with other friends. Liz, who did not need much to calm Christopher now that he could see his family was happy, smiled on the verge of tears.

/=/=/=/=/

On the far side of town, outside a house in a quiet street in Broadchurch, the temporary foster home given to her while she waited for the chance to safely return home, Hailey Bridgewater heard her phone buzz with a text. She opened it and read it silently.

Within moments her face broke into a beaming smile almost identical to the one on Chloe's face. Finally, something had gone completely right! She thrust both hands high into the air.

“Yes!!” she yelled.

Neither she nor Chloe knew that Lara Daniels was also shouting for joy. Hardy had won the Children’s Services case conference and custody. And many others across the sleepy town on the Dorset coast.

“What is it? What’s happened?” a voice called worriedly from the door.

Hailey turned to grin at her temporary foster carer. “It’s ok, Mrs. Jenkinson,” she assured her. “DI Hardy’s won custody.”

/=/=/=/=/

The doctor gave a final check of Ben’s vital signs and injuries' status and made notes to the paperwork on the bed. He then carefully removed the IV, which had already been turned off, placing a little superman plaster where the tube had been inserted.

Adjusting the oxygen fed on the gauge attached to a portable tank, he slotted the unit into a compartment under a wheelchair.

“All’s set,” he said at length.

At last, the nurses gently moved Ben into the wheelchair, checked the nasal tube, and explained the setting to his big sister standing beside it. He and Daisy were being released today. He had been in the hospital for two months, she for a little less to find and manage a correct treatment regimen, and to wait for legal advice on where to send them. They were both ready for a change from this sterile yet safe environment.

But what change would it be? The social worker was not saying, just that they were being discharged today. So it could be practically anything, and the lack on confirmation was not making either feel any better.

Daisy walked beside Ben, holding his hand as he was wheeled out. She stared straight ahead. No one was telling her anything other than medical things.

Ben looked up at the social worker. “Where are we going?” he asked again.

“You'll know soon enough,” she said, her face guarded even as she gave them both a smile.

Daisy feared what her words could mean. Would they ever see their dad again? At least not until Ben was aged out of care? She was strictly too old, but she refused to be parted from her brother. She still wondered if they would grant that.

Some minutes later they were seated in the back of an Audi. The car seat Ben had used on the way down to Broadchurch was now holding him as they were driven to wherever they were supposed to go.

Aside from letting them consult on her decision about the baby, Daisy had not seen her key worker, her dad or her cool step-mum since the day her mother and Bruce were arrested. It was not an encouraging picture she saw being painted before her. She wondered if this seemingly nice lady was really another one of those monsters who separated families. She’d heard about them.

They all worked for the Social Services, Daisy had painfully realised. That, in theory, made them powerful and unrivalled. Some had abused that power in the past. She vaguely remembered her dad and someone else quietly grumbling about that when they thought she was asleep. She was sure she was no older than ten at the time.

The journey from the hospital was taking a very long time, Daisy thought. She frowned at the countryside flying by. How far was it to her dad’s house? That was where they were going, wasn’t it? It was a full ten minutes before she began to see many houses again, but it felt like a different town entirely.

In fact, she distinctly recognised it.

“Uhm... excuse me, Mrs. Troup? This isn’t Broadchurch. This is Weymouth.”

“I know,” the woman replied airily as she parked the car outside a terraced row of Victorian houses.

Daisy kept her uncertainty hidden. Had her dad moved again? Or had her mum lied about where he lived?

She unbuckled her seatbelt and turned to do the same for Ben.

“I’ll do that,” Mrs. Troup cautioned her in the same tone. “It’s not your job now,” she said not unkindly. “Someone else will be taking care of him now so you can be a sister and not a mother to Ben.”

Daisy silently agreed with that. But still, where were they?

She got out of the car and followed Mrs. Troup into the house. Their clothes, all hand-me-downs given to them by Mrs. Troup, were in black bags by the front door. Nice house. Very quiet inside after the raucous mob of seagulls outside. But in the living room stood not her dad and his family. But two strangers.

“Here they are,” Mrs. Troup announced. “We’ll be in touch as son as we have a permanent placement for Ben. Here’s my card, should you need to contact me. The Children’s Services, Sandbrook Office, will be handling the case from now on.”

The couple thanked her and Daisy suddenly felt the need to run. But she would not leave her brother.

“Welcome to our home,” the man said. “I’m Greg and this is Molly. We’ll show you to your rooms. Your room is upstairs, Daisy, and Ben, your room is downstairs in the extension. You have your own bathroom. How about that?”

They were nice, on first impressions. Genuine people, but Daisy was just a little alarmed.

“What’s going on?” she asked, numb with shock.

Greg blinked. “I’m sorry?”

“We were supposed to be going to our dad’s house. He’s expecting us.”

Greg and Molly shared an awkward glance.

“Sorry, Daisy, I mean no offence, sweetheart,” Molly replied. “But you need a safe and loving environment.”

“My brother needs a pacemaker more than anything else,” Daisy replied. “And where’s his wheelchair? Where’s his oxygen canister? There’s been a terrible mistake in bringing us here. We were supposed to be going home.”

Greg spoke up. “From what we’ve heard, going back to your parents is out of the question. Why would you want to go back to someone who hurt you?”

“Why are you lying about our dad?” Daisy responded angrily. “Our dad never hurt us! Our mum and her stupid boyfriend hurt us! Call Mrs. Troup, call anyone. I want to go home!”

Greg looked less than impressed. “I’ll show you to your room. Once you’ve settled in you’ll feel much better.

Daisy stared at them in silent and growing horror. Ben trembled beside her.

/=/=/=/=/

Hardy arrived at the hospital almost at the same time as the doctor who had been at the case conference that morning. They spoke a little on the way up to the ward, Hardy’s family buzzing with excitement at the prospect of Daisy and Ben coming home.

“Given your close proximity to the hospital I think they can both go home today,” the Doctor announced. “Ben, I’m afraid, will be reliant on oxygen until he has the pacemaker fitted. I’ll show you how to use it.”

“Thanks.”

They walked into the ward and Hardy instantly noticed that Ben’s room was empty. He wondered if that meant he was well enough to be moved into the general ward. But the four beds in the general ward were all occupied.

“Where’s my son?” he asked. “Where’s Ben? Has he been moved to another bed?”

A nurse looked up at him blankly. He did not recognise her. “Which bed was he in?”

“This one,” he pointed to the observation room behind the nurse’s station. “Is he with Daisy? Or playing somewhere, perhaps? We’re here to take them home.”

Then he noticed his doctor’s face turn white.

“What’s happened?” Hardy asked. He felt a swell of panic. “Oh god. Did he take a turn for the worse? Has he died? Tell me!”

/=/=/=/=/

Hardy lay on the sofa, his eyes open but dead. It was all he could do to hold his babies in his lap, one in his arm, falling asleep, and one on his shoulder. It was all he could do to take a breath. All he wanted to do was die.

The hole he had sunk into was wretched and dark. He did not remember the sedative they had given him, beyond the sharp scratch to his thigh. He didn’t remember anything of the journey home. He did not remember the kids crying. He did not remember dinner.

His mind was a jumble of unreal thoughts and half-imagined voices. He could not even find the dividing line between awake and asleep.

At some point he realised the twins were no longer there. A pair of hands had given him Fred to cuddle, but after a while he was gone, too. And by his side, sat Tom. He had felt his concerned eyes on him at least once, but he could not turn his head. Could not take his eyes from the blankness of his life. Ben could be dead in weeks, and he was gone. He didn’t know where. He did not know who had authorised Ben’s removal from hospital. He did not know where his children had been taken or who had taken them. He did not know how to get them back.

He vaguely recalled Ellie shouting into her phone at someone, possibly called Helen Jolt. But he had no idea who that was now. And frankly he did not care. He just wanted his children home.

Some time later, his meal untouched and his tea ignored, Ellie curled into his side. She said nothing, just stroked his shoulders and chest, soothing the knots in his muscles. But she wondered how much of a balm she was against the rest of the pain.

Eventually the sedative began to wear off. At that moment, he broke down and cried. Ellie held him, crying with him. She made vows to fight on. She would kick up so much stink. Whoever had done this, she would make them pay. This was putting him under tremendous mental trauma.

Her husband had a pacemaker. But what did Ben have? Where was he sleeping that night? Did he and Daisy even know how close they had been to coming home? Something told her they didn’t even know. Something told her that Ben was not doing as well as his dad.

ĐĐ

To be continued...

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
diane_dme
Jan. 6th, 2015 06:52 pm (UTC)
Moley!! I detect your hand in these harrowing scenes! You had better not kill off little Ben!!

Don't worry - I love you really. :D :D
tkel_paris
Jan. 6th, 2015 11:05 pm (UTC)
How did you guess?

Well, it had to be a certain length, and so I went along with it. Besides, aren't harrowing twists consistent with Broadchurch? :)
diane_dme
Jan. 7th, 2015 06:46 pm (UTC)
True, true! :D
tkel_paris
Jan. 7th, 2015 06:51 pm (UTC)
And did you read 8.4? Wasn't parts of that really satisfying...? ;D
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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