Characters: Tosh, Mary, Team.
Spoilers: Greeks Bearing Gifts.
Summary: Tosh berates herself over being so easily taken in by Mary.
Word Count: 819
Written For: davincis_girl’s prompt ‘any, any, she feels the ice spread out from her heart,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
The whole disastrous situation had only come about because Tosh had wanted to help another woman out of a jam. That had been her first mistake, and her errors of judgement had piled up one on top of another from that point on, leading unerringly to this moment and a painful realisation. She’d thought Mary genuinely cared about her, maybe even loved her, but as her alien lover pressed a knife to her throat, the razor-sharp blade cutting into her delicate skin, Tosh felt a sensation like ice spreading out from her heart.
It had all been a sham, right from the beginning. Mary had never cared for her at all, had seen her as nothing more than a convenient means to an end. The only thing she’d ever wanted was a way into Torchwood, so she could retrieve the transporter, and poor lonely Tosh, so desperate for affection, for someone to see her and make her feel wanted, had proved herself a pitifully easy mark.
In truth, Mary could just as well have targeted any member of the team, with the possible exception of Jack, and it hit Tosh almost like a physical blow to realise she’d merely been considered the most easily manipulated. How could she have been so blind?
That question was easily answered too. She hadn’t seen, at least in part, because she hadn’t wanted to see. Mary had found her at her most vulnerable and given her everything Tosh had thought she wanted; attention, a connection with another person, someone to talk to… And then there’d been the pendant, letting her read her colleagues’ minds, leaving her disillusioned and feeling like an outsider among the people she’d always thought of as her friends, as close to her as family, maybe closer.
She felt dirty now, and used, sullied by this woman who had killed so many humans since being exiled from her home world. She couldn’t even say who she was most disgusted with; Mary for lying and tricking her, or herself for being so gullible as to believe the other woman’s lies. Too late for it to change anything, Tosh realised she was nowhere near as good a judge of character as she’d always thought.
‘Weak, and pathetic, and needy, that’s what I am,’ she berated herself bitterly. ‘No wonder I was such an easy target. It would serve me right if she killed me right now. I deserve it. I’ve betrayed my friends and everything I believe in, and for what? A bit of affection that wasn’t even genuine!’
And yet despite everything, she couldn’t bring herself to hate Mary the way she probably should. How could she after everything they’d shared, and what Mary had shown her? Tosh didn’t mean what the pendant had allowed her to hear, but what she’d seen with her own eyes, the beauty and awe-inspiring wonder of Mary’s true form. She still felt privileged for having been allowed that glimpse of a truly alien being from another world. If only Mary had been as beautiful on the inside.
Held immobile, Tosh couldn’t help but wonder if the series of events she’d been an unwitting participant in had been inevitable. If Mary had come to them openly for help, might things have been different? Might Jack have been willing to help her return home? Probably not, because whatever else she might be, Mary was most definitely a murderer, many times over. Tosh doubted the alien’s life would have been spared, let alone that she would have been allowed the freedom to leave earth.
‘But what will become of me now? Am I going to die here, condemned as a traitor again? I never meant anyone any harm.’ Tosh remained as still as she could and waited, knife still held to her throat, to see how the cards would fall.
Later, when it was over, when Mary was gone, transported into the middle of the sun, Tosh still didn’t know how to feel about any of it. Amidst the tangled knot of emotions that sat like a lead weight on her poor, abused heart, there was guilt over her betrayal of her friends, especially Jack, who had shown her nothing but trust and kindness since rescuing her from the UNIT prison and bringing her to Cardiff. On top of that there was regret over Mary’s ultimate fate, shame over her own behaviour, not to mention her stupidity, and grief at the loss of someone she thought she might almost have loved, if only for a short while.
There was only one thing she knew for certain; the pretty little pendant Mary had given her was a curse and would only bring trouble to anyone who used it. As she ground it to dust beneath the heel of her shoe, Tosh thought that simple act might be the one thing in the whole sorry affair that she’d done right.