Fandom: Warehouse 13
Characters: Artie Nielsen. Mentions Pete, Myka, Claudia, Mrs Frederic, H.G. Wells, Walter Sykes.
Word Count: 777
Spoilers: Series 4, Episode 1: A New Hope
Summary: Artie knows there was no other choice but to use the failsafe.
Content Notes: None needed.
Written For: Challenge 204: 24 Hours at fan_flashworks.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Warehouse 13, or the characters. They belong to their creators.
A/N: My first (and not very good) attempt at writing Warehouse 13. Not particularly happy with it, but I figured I'd post it anyway.
Artie hadn’t had any other choice, he knew that, but it still didn’t make him feel any better about what he’d done. He had no idea what the consequences of using Magellan’s Astrolabe would be, just that whatever happened as a result would be very bad, an evil of his own making, according to what the monk had said just before he died. So be it. He’d acted out of necessity and he’d deal with the fallout when the time came. If there’d been any other option he would have taken it in a heartbeat, but he’d known all along there wasn’t; it was the failsafe or nothing. It had been absolutely vital that the warehouse be restored, along with all the artefacts it housed.
The world could have gone on quite happily without most of what was stored in Warehouse 13, but Pandora’s Box had been the deal breaker. If it had survived, protected within the ytterbium chamber, they could have moved on, rebuilt, and continued their work. But the blast had been so strong that even the chamber had been utterly destroyed, despite being made of the hardest metal on earth. With it had gone Pandora’s Box, hope had been let loose, and without hope…
Without hope nobody on earth had a chance.
The only way out was to rewind time, take everything back to how it had been twenty-four hours previously, and hope that the bomb could be neutralised before it went off. All they needed was a chance to make things right, and the astrolabe was the only artefact Artie knew of that could give them that. They’d only get the one chance though, so they couldn’t afford to fail; the whole world was depending on them. Literally.
Now here they were, back where they’d started what felt like an eternity ago, the warehouse intact around them. Pete was alive again, Myka was safe, and somewhere out there were Mrs Frederic and Claudia, both of them just as they had been. Artie even felt relieved to see H.G. standing there, in one piece even though a day ago she’d sacrificed her life to save him, and Pete, and Myka. He felt a surge of elation, it had worked, but there was no time to celebrate, no time for anything but to deal with the bomb, and that brought up a whole other set of complications. He couldn’t explain to his friends about the failsafe and what they’d done to track it down without putting them in grave danger. That in turn meant he couldn’t tell them how he knew there was a bomb in Sykes’ wheelchair, never mind explain how he’d come up with a solution to the threat it posed, apparently without doing any research whatsoever.
None of that mattered right now, because if they failed this time, then even though no one else remembered any of it, everything they had all been through over the last twenty-four hours in order to get this second chance would be for nothing, and that didn’t bear thinking about.
As it was, they almost didn’t figure things out in time. Gandhi’s dhoti didn’t stop the bomb, although in theory it seemed that it should have. Using an artefact that was imbued with peace and love to counteract one that was infused with hatred and rage seemed to make perfect sense, and yet draping the dhoti over the deadly piece of masonry had no effect. It took them precious moments to realise their reasoning had been slightly faulty. Yes, they needed to neutralise the hate that was powering the bomb, but the bomb wasn’t responsible for generating it; Walter Sykes was, so he was the one the dhoti needed to be used on. Once it was cut off from the source of the hate, the bomb went back being just a piece of masonry; still an artefact, but one that was no longer in imminent danger of exploding and causing widespread destruction.
It was over, and yet at the same time it wasn’t. The Warehouse was saved, and hope was once more tucked away safely where it belonged, behind multiple layers of the best protection humanity had been able to devise. But an unknown evil had been unleashed in the process, and there was no way of knowing whether or not it would outweigh the good that had been achieved.
Artie sighed; whatever happened now was ultimately his responsibility. He’d made the decision to track down the failsafe, and he’d been the one to use it. How high a price the world might have to pay as a result of his actions, only time would tell.