Hello, everybody, long time no see! I do sincerely apologize for my extended absence ever since I permanently migrated over to Archive of Our Own. Honestly, I simply got lazy of having to publish everything on two different sites, in addition to the fact that I personally much prefer AO3. Hopefully you can forgive me now that I've decided to return, for a while at least, and give you all the stories that I've written throughout the past few years! These stories are included in my main collection of "13 Paternoster Row Oneshots" on AO3, but in this case I figured it would be more efficient if I just publish them separately on here.
As always, please remember to leave a review and tell me if I should continue or not! Thanks!
Over the course of her twelve year career at Scotland Yard, Vastra have made quite a formidable reputation for herself as the Great Detective. With over a thousand cases solved and just as many criminals locked away in jail, it was no wonder that those in London's notorious underground realm wanted her dead once and for all. Therefore, it wasn't unusual for Vastra to encounter an assassin every so often, who would try-and fail most miserably-to kill her.
Assault by a single thug in a dark alley was one thing, but launching a brazen attack on her place of residence? Now that is something else entirely! Vastra and Jenny were expecting to settle in the sitting room and spend a quiet evening together, when their home was invaded by a group of masked intruders. They both rushed to grab their weapons before taking their stances side-by-side each other, ready for battle against the unknown intruders. Jenny was still dressed in her servant's uniform, so one could imagine the intruders' confusion at a seemingly harmless looking maid brandishing a sword, while a fire seemed to dance within her eyes. If those low-life crooks thought that it was going to be any easier threatening Vastra inside her own home, then they were sorely mistaken.
Vastra's tongue flicked out to methodically taste the air, leading her to calculate that there were at least ten assassins.
Oh my, what a lot of fun this will be, thought a rather delighted Vastra, who couldn't deny the thrilling sensation that overcame her entire body, just before she and Jenny fell down upon their prey.
Although they were able to effectively stand their ground against the attackers, it soon became clear that whoever sent them was going to great lengths to ensure that they wouldn't fail; These assassins were armed with better weapons, and had been evidently trained in some kind of fighting technique unlike those other inexperienced vagabonds from off the streets. Even in the intense heat of battle, Jenny could still feel an ice cold sense of dread crawl up her spine when she caught sight of an intruder sneaking behind Vastra and watched as he drew out a knife. Seeing that knife suddenly transported Jenny back in time again as images from the past appeared before her mind's eye.
Images of a man whose face is impossibly red with anger….of Jenny's younger siblings all cowering in fear behind her skirt…..of Jenny herself standing as a defensive wall in between her siblings and the man….of the man pulling out a crude looking knife from his belt….and finally, the man charges.
Jenny was brought back to reality right at that moment, just in time to see the assailant lunge toward Vastra, his blade aimed to deliver a potentially killing blow.
No! Not my Vastra, you bastard!
Jenny's body was already moving before her brain could even fully process the whole situation, and she was able to intercept the attack by jumping in front of the assailant, his knife cutting through the fabric of her sleeve and creating a nasty gash on her arm. Jenny barely noticed the pain, however, as she took advantage of the assassin's bewildered state to swiftly bring her own blade up against his neck, applying ample pressure but not enough to draw blood just yet.
"Don't. You. Dare. Touch. Her." Spat Jenny pointedly through gritted teeth.
Jenny watched the man's pupils dilate with genuine panic, mere seconds before she ultimately sliced his head clean off his body in a sudden burst of violent rage.
Thus, blood had been shed that night in the household of 13 Paternoster Row, which now left ten dead slain bodies scattered all across the sitting room floor. Vastra and Jenny themselves emerged from the conflict without receiving any serious damage; Though, the same couldn't be said for their various china and other properties that had been broken during the fighting. Vastra then figured that there was no reason for them to go bother the people in Scotland Yard at such a late hour, as they had actually done them a great service by eliminating these dangerous convicts. Granted, the cunning Silurian did have an ulterior motive to not report this incident to Scotland Yard, considering the fact that those ten fresh human bodies would be more than enough to feed her for at least a week. It was justice well served, indeed!
After hauling all of the corpses down to the basement for storage, Vastra returned to the sitting room where she found an exhausted Jenny sitting slumped back against a chair with her blood-stained sword still held loosely in her hand, and a somewhat distant, faraway expression on her face. Vastra decided that it would be best to inquire Jenny about that later, knowing that Jenny's wound on her arm needed immediate medical attention first.
Jenny's hands gripped the arms of the chair, and she released a sharp hiss upon the alcohol soaked cotton wad making contact with her bleeding cut.
Vastra quickly moved her hand away, asking,"I'm sorry…does that hurt you?"
"Ti's nothing that I can't handle, ma'am," reassured Jenny while giving Vastra a small fixed smile, once she saw the genuine concern and worry present in her soft blue eyes. Vastra accepted her answer as an invitation to resume doing what she was before.
It was a rather odd reversal of roles, between the two of them, since Vastra was usually the one most prone to doing something reckless that would result in her getting injured, and all for Jenny's sake. Their line of work came with many dangers and risks, which made them immensely grateful to be living next door to Dr. Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, who was part of a rare species of female doctors in Britain. Even though Vastra was a proud, full-bred Silurian, she was still occasionally capable of appreciating successful "apes" and admiring their achievements, such as those of Miss Anderson, who was currently making breakthroughs in the heavily male dominated field of medicine. Miss Anderson had helped to save their lives countless of times already, so it was only natural for the three of them to develop such a strong bond of friendship with each other. It was Miss Anderson who also taught them everything they needed to know about medical care, just in case of situations exactly like this one, since it was important for them to be somewhat self-sufficient.
"You are lucky that the assailant's aim was off, for his blade could've easily struck you in a more fatal area….such as your heart,"observed Vastra as she continued to carefully clean Jenny's wound like Dr. Anderson showed her. She then proceeded to ask the question, which had been tugging in the back of her head, "What prompted you to jump in between me and him in the first place?"
"You were in danger, Vastra," scoffed Jenny in response, her eyes growing wide with disbelief that Vastra would even ask such a question," how could I possibly just stand there and let you get hurt…or even worse. I-I love you too much for that, Vastra."
Vastra couldn't help the amused chuckle that escaped her lips, as she thought about how Jenny would scold her relentlessly for getting herself hurt doing the same thing, which was in contrast to their current situation. Regardless of that, to hear Jenny say those words so tenderly and lovingly as ever, was still enough to make her heart soar.
Goddess, the stupid things we do all in the name of love, Vastra silently mused to herself.
Once she was satisfied that the cut has been thoroughly cleansed, Vastra next reached to pick up a roll of white gauze bandages. While doing so, she spoke, "My people valued those who were not afraid to show bravery by making sacrifices for the greater cause." Vastra then caught Jenny's eyes with her own, her lips forming a delightfully thankful smile ."You, Jenny, have proven yourself to be the absolute bravest person I've ever known. I shall forever be grateful for what you did tonight on my behalf." Her expression suddenly morphed to that of deep thoughtfulness when she delicately inquired, "However….I still can't help but think, that it might also have something to do with those flashbacks you experienced earlier."
"F-Flashbacks, ma'am?" Jenny's eyebrows furrowed in puzzlement, and her heart started racing faster as she wondered how Vastra could've possibly known about that.
Unbeknownst to Jenny, Vastra was in fact, able to witness those images at the exact same moment as her due to their shared telepathic connection. Vastra had initially found them to be highly alarming, and she was determined to get to the bottom of this matter. It all depended on Jenny's willingness to cooperate, however.
"Yes, flashbacks, since it would seem that tonight's events has triggered some unresolved trauma linking all the way back to your childhood,"said Vastra, before moving her hand to clasp Jenny's smaller one in a comforting gesture. She could see how much pain and anguish that keeping these memories buried was causing Jenny, and only wanted to help her be relieved of them in any way she can. "You are, of course, under no such obligation to disclose that personal information to me…..but perhaps talking about it could help to lessen the burden imposed on your heart?"
Jenny dropped her head down to avoid Vastra's gaze, not knowing what there was to say. Jenny bit her bottom lip and squeezed her eyes shut; Those visions were currently giving her more trouble than even the gash on her arm. She very badly desired to be rid of them somehow, but she just wasn't sure if she was mentally prepared to confront them now, even with Vastra there to support her. A period of grim silence followed as Jenny contemplated her course of action.
"It's because of me father,"Jenny finally began in earnest, summoning all the willpower she possibly could, "….who was an abusive drunkard. Most days he'd come home from work stark mad and raving with the devil's fury. My Ma and siblings were all afraid of him, while I was the only one who ever dared to stand up to him. I would always shield them from his wrath, no matter how much I got beat for it. I did what I had to do in order to protect my loved ones." A large lump got lodged in Jenny's throat, but she forcefully swallowed it down. She continued to speak anyway, albeit rather shakily, "Though things may be different now, and I'm not there to help them anymore….I'll be damned if I let anything happen to you,Vastra! You're all that I have!"
Jenny's entire body trembled as tremors produced by her powerful emotional catharsis washed over her. She didn't even realize that she was crying until she felt Vastra's finger gently wiping away the tears on her face. Strong Silurian arms pulled her into a tight, benevolent embrace where Jenny proceeded to sob against Vastra's chest, the one person that she could trust during this time of distress.
Vastra, meanwhile, was trying to console her weeping angel by cooing, "Hush now, my love, there's no need for tears. For what it's worth, I hereby promise to never leave your side and will always be with you til my very last dying breath. Part of a Silurian warrior's code is that we stand together united as one, we fall together united as one." Vastra placed a finger underneath Jenny's chin to uplift her face toward her own, before solemnly declaring, "We shall never go down without first putting up a fight."
"You got that bloody right!" Affirmed Jenny in between sniveling gasps. She was also able to provide a bittersweet, watery smile that greatly pleased Vastra.
The two of them laughed freely at Jenny's zealous statement, which resulted in their lips meeting in a perfectly sweet kiss that drove out all of Jenny's remaining fears and heartache forever.
Once that was over, a quick warm soak in the bath was exactly what they both needed to wash away all the blood and grime from earlier. Goddess knows they've had a really long and eventful night. Then later, with Vastra sleeping soundly in her arms, Jenny concluded that no wound was ever too big of a risk, if it meant that her beloved lizard would be safe. She soon fell calmly into a blissful sleep, her mind at complete ease with the knowledge that whatever the universe wants to throw at them next, she and Vastra will always got each other's backs.
Btw did anybody manage to catch that little Harry Potter reference I included in there? Hehe