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Unread Feb 18th, 2018, 03:01 PM   #26
the listener
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Ardon had to wait another week before things began to really roll into motion but he didn’t mind, there was a delighted excitement that he radiated out.
Finally there was a call for them to meet Sanders and a new member of their ever growing group.
Ardon and Jack had made their way to Sander’s officer where they saw the man standing with another behind the frosted glass doors.
"Commander Harkness, Ardon this is Nick Bennett, he has been responsible for dismantle the Torchwood organisation on behalf of the EA," Sanders said as Jack and Ardon entered the office.
Ardon secretly beamed at the use of his Attilu’s new title. He approved greatly. The gold said hello as well as he was also introduced.
Nick was a shorter man, stocky with a thick auburn beard. In contrast, ruddy hair was thinning atop his head. Chestnut brown eyes looked out from creased lines that etched his face. Looking to be in his early fifties, the man seemed friendly enough, through professional. After further introduction they learned that Nick, while never having been on Kilara, knew all about the failed mission there and had been part of an elite team that had gone about containing any knowledge of the planet and Torchwood from the outside world after the facility had been raided. The cleanup had been a huge process with many legal proceedings done out of the public eye.
The man leaned forward, and offered his hand, “It’s good to meet you, Commander Harkenss I’ll be going through the base with you and I will hopefully be able to offer any answers you may have moving forward.”
"Thank you, I am hoping to bring this place up to code and online as soon as possible," Jack said to Nick.
The man looked at Ardon with a certain familiarity instead of the outward awe that left most people stunned. Having worked so closely with the Kilara Project it was understandable that he knew of dragons, “We’ve already gotten a hold of some staff that are in the process of getting the base in livable order. It’s been neglected the past few years since the takedown. A bit dusty to say the very least. A little elbow grease and a lot of credits will get it looking much less shabby. There is a lot of work to do, and most of it not the renovation kind of work. We’ll get you situated and give you the rundown of the base.”
Ardon looked cheery at this, excited to get going and see what Jack would soon be in command of. The little dragon had spoken so proudly of his Attilu becoming a ‘commander’ even though he didn’t know the work involved with such a title. He was just absurdly pleased with the whole situation.
After a few more minutes of general chatter colonel Sanders seemed to usher them to get underway. There was much to be done.
"Good luck you two, I’m sure you will accomplish great things, I be in touch" Sanders said shaking Jacks hand.
"Thanks for everything, Sanders, take care" Jack said with a smile.
“Thank you, sir!” Ardon pipped up before Nick led them to the back of the ship where their shuttle waited.
Ardon climbed aboard, a little warily of the smaller space at first but then settled on the floor as Jack and Nick took their seats on either side. Soon enough the shuttle rumbled to life and they were airborne, flying out over the countryside.
Ardon had gotten up and paced to and fro the two windows, interrupted any sort of important conversation between Jack and Neck with his intent staring out the window. He would swing around and race to the other to see town and human structures in the distance, making small noises that declared his delight at the scenery.
“You’ve got your hands full already, it looks like,” said Nick as Ardon passed for the hundredth time it seemed.
"Just calm it down, we have a lot of work ahead of us Ardon, getting this base up to code and allowing Dr. Baxter to begin building this portal" Jack said to the gold.
Ardon sat down but continued to stare out the window, paying Jack little mind as he was enthralled with the world around him, finally seeing a bit more. He sang softly to himself under his breath as he watched the world go by, a new habit that he had picked up living on the ship.
Now that Ardon was quieter and stopped moving about the cabin so much, Nick could finally speak.
“This is going to be an…. Extensive undertaking, I hope you understand, Commander Harkness,” said Nick, his voice not mocking but instead, concerned. His brown eyes reflected years of weary toll after having to deal with the blowback from the events on Kilara and the realization of what the original Torchwood had done.
"I understand Nick, it is going to be a lot of work, but still, we got something to work with here," Jack replied.
The short man nodded, “We certainly do. Admittedly the EA was in panic mode when you were rescued but after the initial proposal and a lot of tweaking, they are really taking the reins and realizing that this can be a great benefit to them. There will be a lot of rules to follow and the EA will expect you to toe the line and follow direction to the t.”
The older man seemed to be warning Jack in a gentle way, giving him the heads-up for what to expect on this exceptional endeavor.
"I expected as much, I know we are on a leash so I ensure we are good servants." Jack replied back.
“I’m not a servant” snorted Ardon, overhearing only the last bit.
Nick smiled and chuckled lightly, “Servants to the greater good of the world, young dragon.”
“Oh, okay. I guess I’m alright with that. As long as I am not being made to wash floors and scrub dishes.”
Jack laughed shaking his head, "Oh Ardon, trust you" he said.
Nick chuckled again. A few minutes later the shuttle began to slow, drawing everyone’s attention.
“Ah, here we are,” said Nick.
“I don’t see anything,” said Ardon, looking at a large track of land below as the ship began to descend.
“’It’s underground. Easier to keep the place secret, you see,” explained Mr. Bennett.
“Oh, how big is it?” he inquired.
“Well,” said the man, standing up and moving to the window. He tapped his tablet pen against the glass, “See that spindly tree there? The base runs from about there all the way to that stand of shrubs way over here.”
“Woah,” marvelled Ardon as he tried to imagine such a large place underground.
“It was quite the base back when we first shut it down. I’m sure we can getting up to top shape soon enough.”
Ardon watched as the ground opened up beneath them as a door slid open. The shuttle dropped into the hangar and landed, powering down as dust was blown up around the ship.
“Welcome to your new home,” said Nick, pressing the button to open the shuttle doors.
Ardon sprang out of the doors the moment they opened and trotted down the lowered ramp.
The hangar was a massive room and smelled damp and dusty with disuse.
“Here is the main hangar. There is an additional small one on the north side of the base for smaller craft,” explained Nick and he and Jack followed Ardon down the ramp. “You will be given passcodes and such once we get the systems operational,” he said, leading them through the doors. The hall they entered was far brighter and cleaner, the smell of cleaning solution fresh in the air.
“Let’s give you the tour, shall we?” said Nick, leading the way.
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Unread Feb 19th, 2018, 11:26 AM   #27
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“Please lead the way” Jack said to Nick as they left the hanger and went for a tour round the facility, Jack could see this place had potential but needed bringing up to code, for the purpose of what they needed it for.
Nick guided Jack and Ardon through long narrow corridors, the lighting was dim in places as the base seemed very much to be mothballed up, not allot of activity here, not many staff and no cleaners as dust had accumulated in the corners Jack noticed.
“I assume the base is this dim as its been taken out of service?” Jack asked Nick as they walked along the narrow corridors.
"Yes. It's just running on minimum power right now while teams get things underway," nodded Nick.
Jack nodded as they continued, approaching a large space which was locked up, it seemed to open up from the lifeless corridors they had been walking round.
"Here," said nick, opening a set of doors, "was the space that has been a rather extensive lab. We converted it to storage after the takedown."
Ardon walked past and looked around at all the old odds and ends that had been converted with sheets and tarps.
Jack looked around and marvelled at the size of it, it was indeed a great size and the ceiling was high enough to allow Ardon to get in and out.
“I do like how big it is, plenty of room for lab equipment and analysis machines” Jack commented, his voice echoing around.
"I like how much space there is too!" Ardon shouted so that he could hear his voice bounce around the half empty pace.
Bennett smiled, "We can set you up with some of the confiscated equipment but it will need some updating."
Jack nodded lightly as he looked around.
“We take it, lets do what we can to keep costs down but Torchwood 5 needs modern equipment if we are to fulfil our purpose” Jack said to Nick.
The other man nodded, "We will make sure the needs of your facility will be met the best we can. The computer systems and equipment are some of the larger assets here so you will be set there."
Jack smiled and nodded as they left the labs, Jack hoped whoever they got would love the great expanse to work with.
“I think labs and medical bay all in one will work there for us, whoever we hire will be happy with the space I am sure” Jack said to Nick as they moved onto other parts of the base.
"We can make some recommendations for your team, but final decision lies with you," said Nick, leading the way.
“I understand, so far we can work with what we got here” Jack said as they continued their tour, visiting the other parts of the facility, the post room and security areas like the bases weapons arsenal.
Nick took them down a few corridors, showing off a rather impressive room that would be restored to the command centre, workers already hooking up screens and displays.
Leading them around to another space Ardon trotted ahead and asked, "What's this place?"
"The mess hall, or canteen. They had a fairly small kitchen set up but it can easy be expanded," explained Bennett.
Jack inspected it and guessed it would needed to be expanded up, if they were to fit dragons here. Despite it being a biggish place, it would be a snug fit.
“Ok, I think we need to expand it, considering the dragon here, he wont stay small forever” the man said to Nick as he looked around.
"Yes," nodded nick as he watched Ardon trot about merrily investigating his new home, "he'll be one of the larger ones then?"
“Very much so, I think he grow very big, is there living quarters on site?” Jack asked Nick.
"Yes, 15 rooms. This way. Two can be converted to larger spaces that can accommodate Ardon," said nick, pointing.
Jack followed the man into one room which was big, with a large divider in it, Jack smiled this room would be perfect for them.
“Very nice, like the divider, allowing me and Ardon to live here, I think we should claim this room, what you reckon Ardon” Jack asked the gold.
"I like it!" Grinned Ardon enthusiastically.
"Great. Good choice," smiled nick.
Jack seemed pleased with the choice, they utilize the space, allowing Ardon to have his own space and privacy but still see Jack.
“We need some improvements done in regards know lavatory facilities and a large enough shower room for his highness there” Jack said to Nick.
Nick smiled at that, "that should be easy enough to do," he said, "I'll get you in contact with the renovation team and you can put in the requests you need."
Jack was pleased with this.
“Thank you, Nick, best to instruct them to get a big waster tank, I imagine he will want hot showers and the pressure as well” Jack suggested as he looked at Ardon exploring.
“Which part do you want Ardy” he asked.
"Thiiiiis part," said the dragon, spinning around and fanning his wings so it took up a good section of the space.
Nick chuckled, "Good luck sharing, commander."
Jack laughed lightly at the dragons silly antics, indeed it would be allot of luck but the base had potential and it would grow under his command.
“I appreciate the tour Nick, this place has potential, how many people worked on this facility in total” he asked.
"Before the takedown there were around 45-70 depending on projects and missions we're guessing. The building can accommodate more if needed though I don't expect you to be hiring that many people right off the bat hm?"
Jack shook his head.
“No, but is there people on Torchwood’s books, Id like them to be rehired under this branch, once we are ready, they can all come back, be new policies and secret acts to sign, do they have parking facilities” he asked.
"You might have some hoops to jump through with the EA in hiring ex Torchwood personnel. They'll likely push their own associates. As for parking there certainly is. Parking garage is to the left of the entry hall we passed earlier.
“I can make a case as well as their own, can you show us the parking, I am sure Torchwood had vehicles, right?” Jack asked Nick.
"Yes there were a number of vehicles. Most of them are impounded at a lot just outside of London. I think there is one left here, perhaps," he said, opening the door to the garage for them to look in.
Nick had led them to the underground car park where the staff would park up, Jack could see closed, reinforced doors obviously leading to the outside world.
"Ah it's still here," said nick, gesturing to the vehicle, "the ramp over there leads to a hidden entrance that begins just at the edge of the property between a few rows of trees. Helps maintain the secrecy of the base."
Ardon was only half listening as he approached the vehicle, looking at it with interest.
“Excellent, that concludes the tour I guess, would you be able to contact the relevant people and get dates and times, I like to make a start on things, me and Ardy will take a wander round and meet you in the command centre” Jack said to Nick.
The man nodded, "alright. Give me half an hour. See you there," Nick said before walking off to fetch the resources needed.
Jack thanked the man and walked over to the vehicle that Ardon was interested in, this would be new as there were never any vehicles like this deployed on Kilara.
“It is a motor vehicle Ardon, a specific type, Land Rover Discovery, big UK brand name here, these are what our agents will use, plus they are 4x4 which means it can go in cities and off road as well” Jack explained to the golden dragon.
"It's much smaller than the big vehicles they used on kilara. Did you ever have one of these?" He asked.
Jack smiled lightly.
“No, I liked my smaller cars Ardon, despite it being impressive, built well and can go off roading, they cost allot to run, I be looking to upgrade our fleet but it is still in good nick I can see, apart from a bit of dust on the paint” Jack replied.
Ardon unfurled his wings and beat them, sending a cloud of dust flying off the SUV. He coughed, "there, a tiny bit better."
Jack coughed as the dust flew everywhere, shaking his head at the dragon antics.
“Great, could of warned me, I reckon you could squeeze in there if I put the seats down and grab some takeaway as well…but you have to earn it” Jack said with a sly smile appearing on his face, the dragon would sense competition and challenge.
"I got you back to earth... kinda. I think I earned it," grinned Ardon.
Jack chuckled lightly.
“Yes you did indeed, but we have to go exploring another time, Nick will give us an update on the progress of things, let’s head there” Jack said gesturing to the golden dragon.
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Unread Feb 21st, 2018, 10:02 AM   #28
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"What do you think of this place?" asked Ardon as he trotted alongside Jack as they headed back to the command center. "I like it but..." he paused, tilting his head as if thinking.
"It will do our needs nicely, will need work obviously but it will do, what you thinking?” asked the man to the gold.
“It feels a bit like being underground in the mines. I can… I feel…. A little weird being under all the dirt above us,” he said, struggling to explain the strange sense the building gave him. He shook out his wings slightly and the shiver ran down the length of his spine to his tail as if that would help rid himself of the feeling.
Jack listened and nodded lightly.
"You won’t be trapped here Ardon, you and me will go for flights outside and all, to make that feeling go away" Jack explained.
Ardon nodded and smiled, evidently not too put off by the weight of the world above him. His curiosity seemed to outweigh instinct at the moment in any case. He inquired about the function and purpose and design of different things he saw and found, making their return back to the meeting area rather delayed.
Still when they had finally gotten back to the command center it was empty, Nick having not returned yet.
Ardon trotted around, inspecting the stacks of desks and computers that would soon be reassembled. He heard the sound of footsteps before Jack did and soon enough Nick appeared in the doorway with a tablet tucked under his arm.
“Sorry for the delay, Commander. I wanted to make sure that I had everything for you,” said the man as the three of them approached one of the clutter free tables, He dusted it off with a swipe of his hand but the grit clung to his palm. With a frown he wiped it on the side of his jacket.
“This place will certainly need a good dusting,” he commented, turning on the tablet, “This can be yours for the meantime. I have gotten some of the information you’ll need to get started here,” he explained.
Ardon looked over their shoulders to the tablet. He had seen similar before but still the small screen enthralled him, able to conjure up pictures and information out of nowhere.
“Here is a compiled list of possible new hires for you to go through. These are the ones that the EA will most likely encourage you to bring aboard. You may go through at your leisure. Every possible new employee will need to be strictly vetted as I’m sure you can guess. Your program will be under great secrecy so ensuring that the proper staff is at your disposal will be a key concern for the EA. I have starred a few of my own personal suggestions here and here.”
"We got a good choice of candidates here, some good skills to use, I know we got Dr. Baxter coming over to our ranks," Jack commented.
Nick nodded, “Yes, from what I hear he’s a bright one. Hang onto him if you can,” said the man as he opened up other files and gave a half wry smile, “Here is the starting budget that the EA is granting you.”
"Holy ****! That is an obscene amount, you sure he didn’t add too many zeros" Jack said stunned, not really realising Ardon would be listening in.
Ardon started slightly at Jack’s reaction, not realizing what the numbers had meant.
Nick smiled, “No, sir, all those zeros are yours,” he replied, “Keep in mind that everything, and I mean everything will have to be approved by them, at least in the beginning. Prepare for a bit of a struggle commander.”
"I figured, but we need to put a cost plan for improvements and expansion as well as upgrading security" Jack said to Nick.
Mr. Bennett nodded, “That certainly is so. Now, here is the contacts for approved contractors for upgrades and getting them place put back in order…”
Ardon had lost interest in the numbers and boring chatter of procedures and had gone back to exploring the command center while the men talked. Still being rather young, his attention span for such things was lacking.
He looked under sheets to find ever more monitors and screens, dust bunnies rolling away with the movement. As he walked down the opposite side of the room, towards a hall that lead to a secondary entrance, his wing caught on a large sheet that had been hanging from the ceiling. The white drapery was pulled down on top of him, cascading with a waterfall on dust along with it. He coughed and shook off the sheet, looking up to see his reflection staring at him.
Ardon had seen bits of his reflection before, in still water and small pieces of human engineering. On the Apollo he could see his reflection in a proper mirror but it had only been his face. With the entire hall a mirror he could see all of himself nose to tail.
On the other side of the command center Nick had lapsed into more serious conversation regarding the intense security that would soon be in place and the highest level of secrecy that would soon shroud the organization from most of the world.
“Any contact with family and friends is prohibited for now. The EA needs to come up with an adequate cover story for your return. You are listed as deceased in all public records as it stands,” said Nick apologetically knowing it must be terribly difficult not being able to tell his loved ones that he had returned after all this time, “So until the EA has marked it alright for contact after your cover story briefing you are under strict orders not to not get in touch with anyone from your life before Kilara.”
"That will be fine, there will be no issues here, we don’t exist," Jack said in a neutral tone of voice.
Nick nodded somberly carrying on with the next point.
“There were extensive numbers of crews on Kilara. While a devastating number of individuals were lost in the… events that took place on the planet and the two ships that were lost in the evacuation, there are still people on earth who have seen that world, seen these sentient creatures and know of their existence. I know Colonel Sanders and the others may have said that Ardon might one day be made public, I wouldn’t bank on that happening any time soon. The EA has to tread very carefully now that you have returned with Ardon in tow. Any of these people can be a danger to you or Ardon as well as the integrity of the EA. So,” he said, casting a look over to the dragon who seemed to be inspecting his reflection in the mirrored hallway, “I’m afraid you will have to keep your gold spark there under close eye.”
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Unread Feb 21st, 2018, 03:47 PM   #29
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Jack and Nick spent the rest of the afternoon and into the early evening discussing many things to do with the base, staffing and drawing up a cost priced plan to bring this facility up to code and how to restructure the Torchwood organization.
Nick explained that Torchwood 13 had gone rogue and was lost when EA forces went to apprehend the leader, Nick said everyone perished in what appeared to be a freak experiment gone wrong.
Torchwood 5 would become the defacto HQ for the organization and would work very closely with the EA.
Jack had decided the stay on the base and a small bed was brought into the bare bones quarters that would be theirs, aslong with a table and a chair, Jack and Ardon ate the rations provided as Jack looked at his tablet with a lamp providing additional light.
Sadly the young golden dragon yearned for adventure and exploring, not stuck in a cold, bare room watching cob webs and hearing a drip of water from a tap in the bathroom.
Finally the boredom got to unbearable levels for the gold.
"Could we go above ground," asked Ardon, nosing Jacks elbow with his snout. "Fly, run or do something?"
Jack frowned lightly after Ardon nudged him.
"You are a pest, have you not heard the saying, work before play?" Jack asked the gold, still focused on the tablets he was working on, having to re read a sentence.
The gold wasn’t amused.
"No that's boring. Play first then work or else you turn into forge!" Said Ardon.
Jack laughed lightly, putting down the tablet, "Ok young dragon, what do you suggest" Jack asked.
The gold smiled wryly, eyes sparkling, "I want to see a city."
Jack had a feeling he would ask such a question, the dragon had never seen a city before and he wanted to see, it also came with its own risks.
"Which city Ardon, we got lots of them and how do you propose not being seen" Jack asked the gold.
"Any city. I don't know what they're called. No one could see me if we flew high?" Asked Ardon.
Jack had a think scratching his head.
“Or..we can squeeze you into that Land Rover and get closer" Jack suggested.
Ardon's eyes lit up,
"really?" He asked, unable to keep the excitement from his voice.
Jack nodded his head lightly.
“I think you can fit in, be a squeeze plus your not too heavy yet to travel, I grab some blankets from the storage area’s to hide you, put the seats down and you can see, can get closer too” Jack offered to the golden dragon.
Ardon's glee was tangible, "oh I can't wait to see a city!"
Jack smiled, feeling the dragon’s excitement through their bond, it was strange but the boundless youthful excitement Ardon had was catching.
“Come on, I grab the keys, you get blankets, meet me in the car park” Jack said to the gold getting up.
Ardon followed after him, trotting, "what will it look like? Which city are we going to? How many humans live there?"
Jack smiled lightly.
“We wont go to the Capital, we go to a smaller city known as Swindon, there is I think over a million people living there” Jack explained as he went to the control room and opened up the locker and found the Land Rover Keys.
"A million!" Exclaimed Ardon , surprised. "How are there so many in one place?"
Jack chuckled lightly.
“People live in houses or flats which hold allot of people in them, people live in cities to work, to socialise, to eat out, have entertainment and excellent transport links” Jack said trying to explain everything to the gold, it was going to blow his mind.
"Let's go see then," said Ardon excitedly, waving his tail back and forth.
“Blankets? I done my bit, you need to do yours” Jack said gesturing to the blankets before them.
Ardon grabbed them and threw them over his shoulder, "these should be enough."
Jack nodded lightly.
“Yes, I think so, let’s go” Jack said as they walked back to the land rover in the car park, the sound of talons and footsteps echoed in this place, Jack pressed a button and yello0w lights flashed and unlocked the vehicle.
Jack opened the boot and opened the rear door as wide as it could go and then he put the seats down in the back.
Using one Blanket he put it covering the floor, to protect the seats from Ardon’s claws and to make it comfortable, once he done this, he put another blanket down for comfort, luckily the windows were tinted black and it had privacy glass.
“Right Ardon, car is all ready, hop in, slowly since your quite big” Jack said gesturing to the open boot and blankets on the floor.
Ardon stepped onto the vehicle, pulling his wings right against his back so that they wouldn't catch. On the tight quarters he slowly spun around so that his tail followed in after him before laying down.
"There. All limbs in I think," he laughed, putting his chin on the armrest.
Jack smiled as he used the other blankets over the dragon to hide him from others, the privacy glass would help but it be better to be safe than sorry as Jack shut the back.
Then he got back into the driver’s seat and closed the door.
“You comfy there?, the blankets over you will provide some cover as well as the privacy glass, no to remember how to drive manual” he said starting the car up.
Ardon made sure the blankets covered up most of his gold scales, his head popping out under the sheet, the fabric making him a dark hood.
"I'm comfy." He declared, "let's go!"
Jack laughed as he put the car in gear and turned the lights on, the man smiled as the vehicle moved, Jack had opened the locked gates and soon they were travelling down a dark tunnel, it wasn’t long till they were outside, clear skies as the vehicle left the seemingly empty field and towards the main road.
“Do you mind if I turn the radio on, it’s a human thing that plays music, informs us of news and other stuff” Jack explained.
The dragon tilted his head curiously, "yeah sure."
Jack switched the radio on and it locked onto a DAB signal for BBC radio and soon a voice could be heard.
“Good evening everyone, welcome to the late show with Mike Goldstar and I be playing you hits from the 90’s and early 2000’s so keep listening for a chance to win a trip to Bermuda” the man said over the radio.
Ardon perked up at the sound of the man's voice, "Oh! Can he hear us? Hello!" Ardon said rather loudly back to the radio but then music began to play. Such a strange sound to the dragon's ears. He knew of singing of this music was something completely different.
Jack chuckled lightly.
“No Ardon, he cannot hear us, this is music, a human thing, bit of culture, got different types of music, or different styles as it were, some got more of a beat, others are slow and others loud, some songs tell a story, happy, sad, a way to express emotion” Jack said trying to explain this concept to the dragon.
"Well, I like it," Ardon said. "You can listen any time? Press that button and there's music?"
Jack nodded.
“Yes and we can listen to different radio stations, lets listen to another” Jack said using the AI on board as it cycled through the radio stations until it found one.
“Good evening London!, this is dragon radio, playing all the best hits from the 80’s 90’s and now, keep tuned into Dragon radio, up next Lisa Lougheed with run with us” came the voice over the radio.
"Dragon radio?" Asked Ardon, a grin spreading across his face. "They can't have dragons songs can they?"
Jack shook his head.
“No Ardon, I do not think growls and keens would sell many hits, its just names of the stations, doesn’t usually mean anything Ardy, just listen and enjoy the music” Jack said.
Ardon found himself liking human music as his tail twitched to the tune of the beat of the song while he looked out the windows.
Jack drove onto them motorway as they head towards Swindon.
“Least it is quiet so we be able to go into the city centre and perhaps grab something to eat, experience, just remember to keep hidden” Jack suggested to the gold.
"I know, I know. I'm hiding," Ardon. Assured him, "we can go to a place where you are given food and not have to hunt for it?" He asked excitedly.
Jack nodded his head.
“Basically, got to pay for it in the form of credits, to gain credits you work and earn them, it is then used in exchange for goods, services and entertainment, it funds allot of things, its how humans conduct themselves, think of it as a trade, like Forge did with the rock” Jack said trying to keep things as simple as possible.
Ardon frowned briefly, remembering the rock. This disruption of his good mood didn't last long though, "so I will work to get credits to eat? What will I have to do?"
Jack shook his head.
“You wont be working, we pay for everything for you, feeding, accommodation, you wont have to worry, what Torchwood needs is a mascot and a guardian to put your plan into action” Jack said as he looked ahead at a sign.
“Well your about to see your first city in the distance, this is Swindon2 Jack said as a few buildings came into view.
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Unread Feb 23rd, 2018, 09:13 AM   #30
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“Hey! That says Swindon! We’re almost there,” said Ardon, reading a sign. Jack had told him the purpose of some of the many signs they saw. He was very pleased with his current level of reading comprehension and read different signs as they passed whenever he wasn’t listening to the radio.
Ardon’s energy was electric when more cars appeared on the road, seeing people and buildings and more conventional human houses. Yards, fences, paths and everything else that dotted the world around him.
"Oh, oh what's that?" Asked Ardon as they approached the city.
"That, Ardon, are buildings, we are now in city limits of Swindon, you see all sorts of buildings, different sizes and heights" Jack said.
“And people live in them?” asked the dragon to which Jack nodded.
"Wow," said Ardon, his head swiveling back and forth, trying to take it all in as Jack drove slowly past markets, parks and residential areas. "Look at all the cars! Look! Oh! See all those people over there!"
Jack smiled.
"Yes, obviously people going about their evening, seeing films, shopping for food, drinking coffees" Jack said as they travelled through the city centre.
"So many of them. Everyone is dressed differently," he noticed after having seen nothing much other than uniforms since he first encountered humans. Hats, dresses, different outerwear were all catching his attention. Such bright colours compared to the dull ones that Jack had worn on Kilara.
"They are civilians, no uniforms, people wear clothes to keep warm, but we humans like to look smart or trendy, the clothes developed into fashion items, some clothes can be used to enhance a persons look," Jack explained.
“I see,” murmured Ardon, leaning closer to watch someone walk by with a very flowy flower print dress.
“Oh wow,” said Ardon as a fire truck roared past, lights flashing and sirens blaring. He leaned over into Jack’s space to watch it disappear down the road.
Jack chuckled, "Hey watch it Goldie," Jack said pushing his head back.
"I need to drive still," Jack added.
“Sorry,” said Ardon, moving back over to the other side to watch a few children ride bikes down the road.
It was nearly overwhelming for the dragon but he was delighted at being able to see such a different world.
“What is that place?” asked Ardon as they stopped at a light. A number of people were sitting at a table shaded by an awning at the corner of the street.
"That is a coffee shop, basically people go there to drink hot beverages, maybe have cake and talk, socializing and meeting up, the shops are used to buy food or services, its how humanity operates," Jack explained the best he could for the young gold.
At the mention of food there was a hungry gurgle from the back seat.
Jack looked back at the gold hearing his stomach rumble.
"I think food is a good bet, I order us something on the go, cant have you being seen" Jack said as he indicated off the main road towards a big out of town shopping place.
"Where are we going to get food?" Asked Ardon as Jack pulled off the main road. "Greggs? What's that?" he inquired, seeing the sign before the man answered.

"You like it, I wonder if they still do steak bakes, I don’t think one will sort you out, just keep out of sight," Jack said pulling up.
Ardon hunkered down under the blankets, peeking out to watch Jack order as he pulled up to the menu board and speaker.
"Ahh good evening, I'd like to make a pretty big order please, lots of staff doing overtime," he told a white lie.
"What can we get for you today?" crackled a voice from the menu board speaker.
“Well, 100 steak bakes, 100 chicken bakes and 50 iced fondant donuts please.. oh and a bacon sandwich," he ordered.
The speaker was silent for a moment, “Oh..oh… that IS rather a large order.”
Ardon had been reading the menu, peeking out from the blanket.
"And a large soft drink," ordered Ardon over Jacks shoulder.
"Um, Coke for you ,sir?" Inquired the voice.
"Uh, yes?" He said, looking at Jack.
"And a large coke please...make it a zero sugar since were taxing sugar right?" he asked.
“No, full sugar,” corrected Ardon with a grin, “I want to know what it tastes like.”
“Alright, give me a moment here…. Pull up and we will sort this out. It may take a little while.”
Ardon gave a very quiet yet happy thrum while the woman calculated the order. As they pulled up the inside of the kitchen was alive with hurried employees trying to get together such a massive order.
The woman who had taken their order finally approached the window, opening it as she handed over the large cup of pop.
"So that will be..." said the woman but she stopped when she didn't see another person in the car, and looked puzzled, "I could have sworn I heard someone else on the speaker..." she said, holding out her hand for Jack's card.
"Ah, my mobile, was doing a voice call, friend wanted a coke," Jack said handing over his card.
The woman nodded and swiped his card, still looking a little confused.
“Give us a moment to get everything together…”

Soon enough the car was filled to the brim with hot food and they were off driving back on the main road. Ardon had dived into one of the many bags and had at first eaten an item with the paper wrapped and all before being informed that this portion was not intended to be ingested.
His incessant questions had stopped, replaced with the sound of contented chewing with the occasional thrum thrown into the mix.
"So Ardon, what you think?" the man asked hearing the dragon munching away.
"Mm!" Mumbled the dragon happily through a mouth full of food. He finished another round before testing out the he drink he got. He took off the lid and straw and took a sip. Surprised by the carbonation he shook his head vigorously snorting at the weird sensation, "what is that!"
Jack laughed lightly.
"Its fizzy, don’t go gulping it all at one young dragon, sip it" Jack instructed as he took a drink of a coffee.
The rest of their little trip was less interrupted with questions. Ardon busied himself eating while Jack simply acted as tour guide, telling him all about the world about him. Soon enough they returned back to the facility. Ardon was dead tired from such an eventful day and finally gave Jack a break to get work done. Building Torchwood back up, crafting it to their very own design. This would mark a new era for the man and dragon and the world in which they now resided…..

To be continued.
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