Torchwood 1913: Jack be Nimble

by JJPOR [Reviews - 66]

Printer Chapter or Story
  • Teen
  • Explicit Violence, Swearing
  • Action/Adventure, Drama, General, Horror, Mystery, Series

1. Chapter 1 [Reviews - 8] (1608 words)
Retro-Torchwood! I half-wrote this one back around Christmas time, when I was going through a major Gerald and Harriet fic kick, but this rewritten version was inspired by my buddy Clocketpatch; thanks for inflicting that particular plot bunny upon me! A lot of the backstory and characters here are my personal fanon, but some of it is based on the fluff piece they did on the Torchwood website back when To the Last Man aired; I have actually seen something of the Torchwood Archives book in the meantime, and it offers significantly different background on Gerald, in particular, but sorry, I'm sticking to the original version, muttering darkly about disinformation as I go... Oh, and I certainly don't own Doctor Who or Torchwood or anything pertaining to them.

2. Chapter 2 [Reviews - 2] (2350 words)
Back to the Institute; Gerald still isn't any happier than he was last time we saw him. Enderby and Caldicott and all of those OCs from the original Torchwood 1907 fic are still oozing about the place, and a bit of 1910s casual racism, so be warned. Charles Gaskell is a canonical character, having been on screen for about a minute in Exit Wounds, and Dr Quinn and Lydia are sort-of-maybe-possibly canon, allegedly being two of the five people in the old photo in To the Last Man. Cambridge Circus is where John Le Carre's eponymously-nicknamed version of MI6 is based in the Smiley novels.

3. Chapter 3 [Reviews - 4] (1635 words)
While Gerald's away, the mice will...well, Jack and co are keeping busy in Cardiff. Lydia Childs and Dr Charles Quinn are, according to the old Torchwood website, two of the other people in the TW 1918 photo. Quinn's relationship with Charles Gaskell from Exit Wounds is obscure; for some reason I have them as two different characters. Sorry for lowering the tone in this part, but Jack seems to be something of an innuendo magnet whenever I write him.

4. Chapter 4 [Reviews - 4] (2246 words)
The next ripping instalment! More silly Torchwood office politicking. It seems obvious that in that era Torchwood would have offices in the various parts of the British Empire; Torchwood India is mentioned in the audio The Golden Age. And some bonus Lovecraft references. Professor Townsend is John Sealy Townsend, a real life physicist of the era and a bit of an "interesting" character.

5. Chapter 5 [Reviews - 1] (3053 words)
The next exciting part, where we meet Harriet at long last, and so does Gerald. Rutherford, Moseley, Townsend, Bohr and Merton are all real-life early-20th Century physicists, Rutherford and Bohr obviously being the best known. Moseley, maybe the best and brightest of his generation, was killed at Gallipoli during WW1. Kneale is given as Gerald's actual surname in the Torchwood Archives book instead of Carter, so it amused me to use it here as his nom de guerre.

6. Chapter 6 [Reviews - 1] (3544 words)
The next instalment! Gerald makes his recruitment pitch to Harriet, and she takes it all very well, considering. Just talking this part, but hopefully we are now at the point where we can get back to the plot and hijinks can ensue. Oh, and Philips the porter was right about the weather; people like him usually are...

7. Chapter 7 [Reviews - 3] (2763 words)
Back to Cardiff, this part, and back to the plot. References here to a couple of "real-life" Victorian-era tales of the supernatural; you may know which ones. "Bwcibo", Google informs me, is a Welsh name for the devil, apologies to any Welsh speakers if this is incorrect, and apologies for Mr Evans's weird phonetic dialect...

8. Chapter 8 [Reviews - 2] (3045 words)
Retro-Torchwood is back! I hadn't really forgotten about this one, really... Introductions as Harriet meets the rest of Team Torchwood, and immediately sticks her foot in her mouth. I don't know whether Charles's resigned acceptance of 1910s-era racism is a good thing, exactly, but feels right for the era. And if you're wondering what the deuce Gerald is going on about at the end of this part, check out my earlier story "Torchwood 1908: Scareship". Now, how's that for shameless self-advertising? ;D

9. Chapter 9 [Reviews - 4] (2773 words)
The next topping instalment! Mostly talking, this part, as Lydia reveals that the "devil" sighting may just be the tip of the iceberg. Spring Heeled Jack and the Devon "Devil's Footprints" are (allegedly) "genuine" Victorian-era unexplained mysteries. And Team Torchwood's male contingent act like idiots. More references to my other story "Scareship" at the start - I'll try to stop doing that...

10. Chapter 10 [Reviews - 2] (2582 words)
The ripping yarn continues! Talking again, but just to set the scene - there will be action shortly. All of the Spring Heeled Jack sightings mentioned here are (allegedly!) genuine, by the way; I go past William Henry Street in Liverpool, site of the alleged last ever sighting of Jack (to date!) in 1904 every day on my way to and from work; my minor claim to fame. :)

11. Chapter 11 [Reviews - 4] (4008 words)
The next thrilling instalment! Gerald, Harriet and Jack spring into action, so you know what to expect; gunplay, stiff upper lips, wisecracking banter and rampant UST! Well, gunplay and stiff upper lips at any rate... Of course, magic doesn't really exist in the Whoniverse - it's sufficiently advanced technology, and I leave it up to the reader to decide what relationship, if any, exists between the pre-WW1 Inspector Davidson and the modern-day PC Andy.

12. Chapter 12 [Reviews - 3] (2726 words)
So, Gerald Harriet and Jack begin to investigate that old black magic, not that there's any such thing as magic in the Whoniverse, as I try to explain with a bit of meaningless technobabble. :D Gerald worries about Harriet, but being Gerald his attempts to show concern tend to fail a bit and are generally as irresponsible as you might expect.

13. Chapter 13 [Reviews - 3] (3990 words)
The next part, in which we meet the infamous Olyver Blaycke, in which he spouts various off-colour innuendos at our heroes (and heroine), and in which Jack and Gerald manage to good-cop, bad-cop him almost in spite of themselves. Some of the half-baked philosophy Blaycke spouts is my best effort at paraphrasing the teachings of his real-life alter ego Aleister Crowley, and Jack just had to go proving Godwin's Law at the end there, didn't he?

14. Chapter 14 [Reviews - 2] (3114 words)
The gang go back to the Hub to regroup - wackiness ensues. More Lydia POV stuff, and some of her thoughts on Gerald. Gerald meanwhile, finds out just what Jack and the rest of them were up to while he was in London, and is not best pleased. And Harriet wonders just what she has got herself into... Oh, and Lydia probably should have copyrighted that line she comes out with at the end...

15. Chapter 15 [Reviews - 3] (2991 words)
The next bit! The plot doesn't advance very much (again!), but hopefully that will end after this part. The main plottiness here is sort of foreshadowing for future retro-TW fics that I will probably never write (useful, then!) and will probably mean more if you've seen the S2 ep To The Last Man. References also to my previous fic "Scareship", so yeah... The creepy tarot-reading little girl, of course, appears in the S2 eps Dead Man Walking and Fragments.

16. Chapter 16 [Reviews - 3] (2431 words)
The next spiffing instalment! In which Gerald muses about things and joins Jack in fondling some weapons; in which Lydia improves her mind; in which Harriet technobabbles with the best of them, and in which Charles draws some pretty pictures. And then everybody stops sitting around and gets back to the plot! :D I know nothing about multidimensional geometry by the way that isn't in Wikipedia!

17. Chapter 17 [Reviews - 3] (2827 words)
The tale rumbles on! We're in the home stretch now...I hope... Our heroes arrive at the scene, Harriet and Lydia exchange thoughts on the subjects of firearms and class divisions, and Gerald discovers that the women of Team Torchwood are not to be trifled with, even if he probably does misguidedly think that he's doing them a favour...

18. Chapter 18 [Reviews - 4] (3617 words)
In which Team Torchwood spring into action, Jack dices with death as only he can, Gerald gives us the dubious pleasure of some more of his unreconstructed views on gender roles, and frolicking Satanic cultists frolic Satanically! No chickens were harmed in the writing of this chapter, and the evil Latin chanting is kind of robbed from the theme tune to The Omen...

19. Chapter 19 [Reviews - 3] (3135 words)
In which Gerald lays down the law, Jack demonstrates how to make a dramatic entrance, and shooty, punchy action ensues! I hope Harriet doesn't come across as too pathetic in the latter part of the chapter, but I thought it was a reasonable response from her in the circumstances. Oh, and they probably should have mentioned Jack's little...condition to her before, don't you think? :D

20. Chapter 20 [Reviews - 2] (2967 words)
Nearly finished...nearly... The next spiffing instalment, in which Gerald sees off the frolicking Satanists, Inspector Davidson worries about his career prospects, Lydia and Jack talk revolution and Harriet and Charles settle down with a good book. Or possibly an evil book, in this particular instance. And some meaningless technobabble, if you're into that.

21. Chapter 21 [Reviews - 2] (3706 words)
The next to last part! Actually, I think I could end it here, but there's a fluffy little epilogue bit still to come. The notorious Olyver Blaycke makes a reappearance in this part, and as for the rest of it, as Paul Daniels might once have said, it's magic! And interestingly enough, Cardiff really was one of the first places in Britain outside of London to have Indian restaurants - I looked it up.

22. Chapter 22 [Reviews - 3] (3794 words)
The end - and not before time! Well, this story has been going on for quite some time now (about eight months, I think!), and wouldn't have been finished without the encouragement of those of you who've been following it, so thanks! Just a bit of fluffy epilogue to go - any similarities between the last section and the Jack/Gwen gun-fondling scene early in S1 of Torchwood are purely coincidental (honest!)