Here we are in the final chapter of Episode 1! If you're still sticking with this, thanks for sticking with this! I've got episode 2 nearly completed and ready to post, so if this story gets a positive response at finish I'll put that one up and then finish up all of Series 6! So seriously review review review - I love nothing more, and I love you guys!
"Okay. Find the creature, close the anomaly, save the city. We totally got this," Connor said as Eric drove crazily through downtown London. He was crammed in the backseat between Alex, Peter, and Sam while Emily sat up front next to Eric looking out the window and tracking the creature.
"We've had worse before," Emily said, and Connor could have sworn she was smiling despite herself… until Alex spoke up.
"We haven't," he said. Sam elbowed him in the ribs and Emily's smile faltered a little bit as she thought back on how she'd been so unceremoniously demoted. Connor tried to get things back on track.
"How close are we getting? We're only going to have one shot at taking it down," Connor said. He looked at Sam, who held out the EMD Net Launcher. He looked it over and turned a few of the dials. "Looks good. Can you take it down?" Sam nodded and took it back from her.
"Alright, here's the plan," Eric said from the front seat, barely missing hitting the side of an SUV. "Sam and I will take down the creature. Emily, you and Peter need to get everyone in the plant out safely. Connor and Alex, you're going to do what you two do best: be the bait." Emily couldn't help but giggle at this, and Connor gave her shoulder a punch between the seats.
"Oi, why am I always the bait?" Alex asked. Connor had learned by not not to ask that question anymore.
Without warning Eric wrenched the wheel sharply to the left and turned down a side street, slamming on the accelerator as they flew down the road in pursuit of the creature. He screeched to a stop in front of a high metal fence and everyone quickly piled out, catching a glimpse of the creature as it descended onto the roof of the building and began trying to tear it apart.
"If it reaches the reactor it's game over," Connor said.
"Well then don't let it reach the reactor," Eric cut in. He pulled a pair of large metal cutters out of the backseat and snapped the lock on the fence. They were in. "Everyone got their assignments?"
"Roger, dodger," Alex said, and Connor almost died of secondhand embarrassment. Hard to believe that he'd been just the same only a few short years ago.
Eric kicked the fence in and the six ran through, branching off into their teams of two. Connor led Alex around the side of the facility to where a ladder ran up the outer wall straight to the roof. Bait, he thought. I'm always the bait. Alex came up after him and soon enough they were rolling over the side of the roof… straight into the Terreteledont's jaws. Connor kicked it in the head hard enough for him to be able to escape, and he and Alex scrambled to the opposite side of the roof. He'd forgotten how much he hated being bait.
"Everybody out!" Emily shouted. She and Peter ran into the control room of the power plant, a dozen bewildered scientists and engineers looking up at them. None of them moved to leave.
"Look, a prehistoric sky beast is about to rain hell down on this place, so either you go or you die!" Peter yelled. Emily gave him a stern look, but it did the trick; they all started to pack up. Emily noted that the one positive of having the anomalies as common knowledge was that no one looked at you like you were crazy when you said you were under attack from a "prehistoric sky beast".
"You're from the ARC?" a young woman in a lab coat asked. She was about six inches shorter than Emily, though her four inch heels made up much of the difference. Not practical, Emily thought, but fashionable for the day and age.
"Yes, and since we'd like to be alive to do our jobs we'd love it if everyone got out of here now," Peter said, impatient. He brandished his EMD at her, though it seemed to do little to intimidate her. She continued talking to Emily as though nothing had changed.
"I can't leave until I've diverted the power to our auxiliary station. If there's a chance this place could blow I can't go knowing that people are going to die because of it."
"A second generator that's off site. We can't afford to lose all power in the city, so we have it ready to boot up just in case." Emily looked nervously at the ceiling. She could hear the creature banging around on top of it… hear the metal creaking and starting to give way.
"It's too risky. We can't waste the time. It's my job to get you safely out of here."
"Look, I have a son at home whose father died a year ago. I'm not going to leave him an orphan, but I'm also not going to leave this city to fall into chaos. I have to do this." Emily considered for a moment.
"How long will it take?"
"Give me three minutes."
"You've got two."
Sam was finding it difficult to get a clean shot at the thing… though the way it was bouncing around, one could hardly blame her. Still, Eric's foot tapping in the background was sending the clear message that she'd better do something soon or the whole damn mess would be blamed on her.
"Could you just give me a second?" she snapped at her boss, surprising him. He stopped tapping momentarily as she lined up another shot. The net launcher only had two shots at a time… not a lot of room for error. She stood next to Eric on the roof of their truck, meaning she was making the shot at a hundred yards. Not impossible, but not easy either. Finally, as Connor scampered across the roof, barely evading the creature's jaws, she took the first shot.
It hit Alex.
"Shit," she cursed, hoping Eric hadn't seen. He had.
"You'll be paying the medical bill."
"Oh, shut up." She refocused, watching as the creature began to flap its wings.
"Not to alarm you, but it looks like it's getting ready to make a getaway." Sam knew it was now or never… she just didn't know how much more damage would be done if it was "never".
"How much more time?" Dr. Isabelle Grayson had been through a lot during her time at the power plant, but a devil bird from the past was certainly a new one. She punched a few more buttons before answering the impatient ARC employee behind her.
"Fifteen seconds." True to her word, Dr. Grayson smashed the last button down and turned the dial that would switch over power to the backup generator a mile down the road. The lights began to flicker as the power was diverted to the fiber optic cables running between the two sites, transferring the computer data. "Done."
"Then let's get the hell out of here," Emily said. She grabbed Isabelle by the arm and the three ran for their lives.
Connor pulled Alex to his feet as the great creature began to rise into the air, the wind from its wings threatening to blow him off the room. He looked between the best, Alex, and Sam, peering at the latter just in time to see her pull the trigger on her EMD Launcher for the second time. He watched nervously as it arced through the air. The creature bellowed one final time as the net ensnared it, the electric pulse shocking the creature into submission. Connor breathed a sigh of relief as it tumbled back onto the roof, landing with a thud that made the whole building shake… and the roof begin to crack.
"Time to go," Connor said, heaving Alex over his shoulder - he honestly hadn't known he was quite that strong - and looking for an exit. Typical of Connor's life, there wasn't one. "Oh, God help me," he said as he looked over the edge. The very ground beneath him falling away, Connor pushed Alex over the edge of the roof and jumped after him. The last thing he remembered was the ground rushing up to smash him in the face.
Eric watched in horror as Connor and Alex tumbled over the side of the building, landing in the grass thirty feet below. He ran to help them, though the sound of breaking glass and metal stopped him in his tracks. The creature wasn't on the roof anymore. It had been too heavy. It had fallen into the generator.
The world around him seemed to slow and Eric took in everything that happened next: Emily, Peter, and another woman rushed out of the facility. The creature let out one final cry as it smashed into the generator, breaking it into pieces. The metal walls of the building cracked like an egg as flames shot out the sides and transformed the power plant into a ball of fire and ash.
He looked to Sam for support, but she simply stood still on top of the Jeep, seeing things in the same surreal way he was. As Emily picked up Alex and Connor and helped them escape the burning rubble, Eric couldn't help but wonder just what the hell they'd gotten themselves in to.
"She's got five minutes, then we go." Becker was feeling… well, he didn't totally know what he was feeling. In truth, he tried not to feel too much anymore. After the horror of Convergence and Jess nearly dying and the subsequent awkwardness between them and now a freaking helicopter crash in a prehistoric jungle hell, he was just feeling done. He'd been at the ARC for almost five years now and in that time he'd lost Sarah, Cutter, Jenny, Danny, and…
...and right now wasn't the time to be thinking about any of that. Right now he had a job to do.
"We can't just leave Abby," Matt argued, resting against the co-pilots chair. Even as he said the words Jo was sitting next to him checking instruments and getting things ready to go.
"Matt, she said to leave after an hour and I'm going to honor that. She's got five minutes." Becker had never expected himself to be the one hard-lining about leaving a teammate behind, but here he was. Matt, he knew, would never do it and Ryan was in the back trying to calm a hysterical woman, so it fell to him to do it. To be strong. But that didn't mean he didn't hate it. "Four minutes now," he said, steeling himself. "Are we ready, Jo?"
"We're ready. But now that I've started her up there's no going back. If we don't get this bird up soon there won't be enough fuel to make it back home, and if I shut her down the aux power might not be strong enough to get her back on. This is our only shot."
"Then let's not waste it," Becker said. He looked out the front window for Abby, feeling, oddly enough, like crying. Becker hadn't cried in years. Maybe the job really was getting to him. Or, maybe he just needed to spend some time not in a freaking jungle. "Two minutes."
He left the cockpit then, moving through the aisles to wear Ryan was sitting with the woman. She seemed to be calmer now.
"Are we ready? Is Abby back yet?" Hunt asked, standing to face Becker.
"No, not yet. But listen, if we want to get out of here we have to go now, and I'm worried Matt my try to stop that. I need to know you're willing to help me hold him down if… if it comes to that."
"But Matt's on our team."
"And so is Abby. But when you work for the ARC you have to put regular people first, and Matt forgets that."
"And maybe that's not a bad thing," Hunt challenged, reminding Becker that, for better or for worse, he was team leader now.
"Or maybe that's the kind of thinking that gets people killed." Hunt was about to open his mouth - no doubt to yell at Becker - when they heard something pounding on the door of the plane.
"Creature?" Becker asked, moving to look out the small window.
"Dammit Becker, it's me. Open the door." Abby Maitland. Becker, almost gleefully, pushed the door open to let Abby and four other men back onto the plane. She collapsed in his arms, cuts running up and down her arms and legs. She looked exhausted.
"It's OK Abby, you're here now. You did it. You did good." Becker held her in his arms silently, looking to Hunt to take control.
"Alright!" Hunt shouted to the front. "Jo, take us home!"
"Well, you lot have managed to destroy half the airport, leave the rubble of a helicopter scattered in the past, and blow up a power plant, all in less than four hours." Lester had given the team's less than an hour of downtime before calling for a meeting where he could thoroughly berate them.
"All in a days work," Hunt quipped, earning smiles from some of the team. Lester knew it didn't mean they accepted him - hell, he himself didn't accept him yet - but at least it was a start. If blowing up half the city was the price he paid for a functioning team, then he'd take it.
"Yes, well, the minister will have some words for our two team leaders, but the rest of you are free to go. And Matt, see to it that you're leg is looked at. If it falls off I'll have to assign you to desk duty and we all know how you do with computers."
With that the team members dispersed, leaving only Lester, Hunt, and Reddington behind.
"I thought that actually went pretty well," Eric said, looking to Lester for approval.
He got none.
"Connor and Alex are unconscious in the hospital and you blew up a creature. I'd hardly say that's a 'job well done', would you?" Erc had the good sense not to answer. "Didn't think so. Now go wait in my office for the minister's call."
Eric wandered off, leaving the other two men alone.
"First day all it was cracked up to be?" Lester asked. Hunt grimaced.
"Not exactly. I didn't expect to… nearly die so many times. Or for everyone to hate me."
"Well, don't take it too personally. They hate everyone at first. Give it time."
"Yes, sir." Hunt waited awkwardly for a moment. "Well, you're dismissed. Please go now and leave me to clean up the royally huge mess the ARC has made… yet again." Hunt couldn't hide his smile as he walked away, leaving Lester finally alone.
"Matt, there's something I need to talk to you about." Matt couldn't say he was all surprised to see Abby walk into the ARC's infirmary in search of him. They'd been like two ships passing in the night for months now. Still, she looked more beat than usual and he knew she hadn't been to sleep since saving the men in the past. Whatever it was must be urgent.
"Look, I didn't tell the team this, but when I was off on my own in the past, I saw… something."
"What was it?"
"Well it was… it was you, but not you." Matt couldn't hide the strange face he made from Abby… he had a bad feeling he knew what was coming.
"Well, there was this freaky military compound where the pilots and the other men were being held prisoner and as we were escaping they tried to kill me but… but you saved me. I think. Does that make any sense?"
"More than you know. Listen, Abby, something happened to me a few months ago, when that train derailed, that I haven't told anyone about…"
And right then and there Matt came clean to Abby on the other version of himself he'd seen and how he'd hidden it from everyone.
"So… it sounds like this guy is going to pop up again," Abby said once he had finished.
"That's what I'm afraid of." Abby thought for a moment before answering.
"Look, we've been through our fair share of weirdness in the last few years. What's one more thing on the list? We'll figure this out Matt, OK? For now, just rest."
With that Abby left him to go see to Connor, who had finally woken up. As Matt laid there in the bed, however, he found himself unable to rest. He sensed that Abby was more uneasy about the encounter than she'd seemed… that things were far worse than either of them cared to admit. So no, he wouldn't rest; he couldn't. Not when he had the distinct feeling that things were about to get so much worse.
"So, how was your first day with our little team?" Emily was surprised to find that, in a strange way, she liked Sam a lot; sure, she had a propensity towards shooting before asking questions, but that only seemed to add to her charm.
"It was… different," Emily said, grabbing two sodas out of the work fridge - modern technology was still sort of amazing to her - and handing one to Sam. "I think it's just… it's just going to take some time to adjust." Even as she said the words Emily glanced through the glass door at Eric, who was talking to Peter and laughing. She thought of Matt, and then of Eric, and then the whole bloody mess she'd gotten herself into since coming to the ARC.
"Well," Sam said, popping her drink open and drawing Emily back to reality. "I guess… here's to new beginnings." She held out her drink and Emily, for once knowing what to do, clinked her glass to it.
"To new beginnings."
Bleary eyed and exhausted from his day, Hunt returned home that night and kicked off his shoes, popped open a beer, and dialed the phone.
"Mission one was a success. They don't totally trust me yet, but they will. I do worry though… they're more of a handful than you made them out to be."
His boss's voice came over the other end of the line, sharp and clear.
"Yes, I know what's at stake. Don't worry; I said they were a handful, not that I couldn't handle it. Give me four months, maybe five, and you'll have what you need." With that Hunt hung up his phone and tossed it onto the couch next to him. All in a day's work, he thought. All in a day's work.
"I saw you on TV today, mommy." Dr. Grayson had been put through the ringer after barely escaping a fiery death at the power plant: she'd been put through medical testing, debriefing with the ARC, and a live television interview to commemorate her harrowing experience. She guessed the latter was where her son had seen her.
"Mommy had quite the day today," she said, flopping down on the couch next to her seven-year-old son, Trevor. She kicked her heels off and watched absentmindedly as he sketched in his notebook. Since her husband had died a year ago she'd been worried about Trevor, who'd taken, increasingly, to spending all his time doodling in that old, ragged notebook.
"I saw the dinosaur that blew up your job," he said, his eyes never looking away from the paper.
"You did, did you?" It occurred to her that just a few months ago a sentence like that would have sounded insane. Now, she supposed, dinosaur attacks were just another hazard of the world she lived in, like car accidents or botched plastic surgery.
"Yup. But the nice people saved you," he continued, his pencil flying in wild loops around the page.
"Yes, they did, honey. Now, Mommy's tired and you have school tomorrow, so what do you say we hit the sack? Should I hang your drawing on the fridge first?" Trevor nodded at his mother, tearing the page out of his notebook. As he did so, Dr. Grayson felt the world begin to shift around her and her thoughts begin to cloud. Memories seemed to slip away in an instant, and the harder she tried to cling to them the further they flew from her. In an instant the sensation was over, a faint buzzing at the back of her mind telling her something, maybe, could be off, but that it most likely wasn't.
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw her husband walk around the corner from the bedroom wearing his pajamas.
"Came home early today?" Dr. Grayson asked her husband, Kyle… though she didn't feel as though she herself was in control of her words. It felt odd to her, talking to him now, despite the fact that she did it every day. It somehow felt unreal, almost like… but that was ridiculous. This was her husband, her Kyle, the father of her child, and he'd never been gone for more than a few days on business. She shoved her doubts down into the darkest corners of her mind and remembered her appointed task: hanging her son's drawing.
As she went to stick it to the fridge, she finally saw what it was that had been sketched onto the paper: a flying creature, like the one that had attacked her, clutching a machine gun in its jaws.
Next time on Primeval:
Emily and Eric make a shocking discovery while doing a follow-up interview that could have dangerous repercussions for the ARC; meanwhile, Jess takes a day off so she can take her brother and niece to the museum, but her vacation takes a turn for the worse when an anomaly opens. Soon, a high-tech security system has trapped Jess, her family, and the ARC team inside. With raptors on the loose, fatalities piling up, and Connor and Becker locked outside, Abby must crack the code to lift the lockdown and save the day... before it's too late.