Actions

Work Header

Smile!

Chapter Text

Alec Hardy had finally redeemed himself, despite being ill and had taken a cab to the nearest train station and gone back to Sandbrook, finally being able to face the locals after locking up two killers and an accomplice. He doubted Claire would stay quiet and would protest her innocence and say it was all Lee's idea but her husband would take her down with him.

He got through the trial, thankful the three of them didn't get the same defence team as Joe Miller and started making his peace with his sixteen year old daughter, who was almost seventeen and due to start at the local college in September. He had found a small studio flat near his new station, not the same one where Tess worked as he couldn't face her and Dave all the time but his new chief had accepted him and he'd kept his rank.

So one Saturday lunch time, he was meeting Daisy in the town as he'd promised she could start staying on his sofa bed and see how they got on overnight. She was waiting outside a fast-food restaurant, not his favourite but it was marginally better than most and at least the chicken didn't have fancy names.

Daisy was checking her phone, leaning on the window.

"How many times have me and your mum told you not to do that?" Alec asked her as she took her earphones out. "I could have been anyone and snatched the phone from you," he complained.

Daisy reached to kiss his cheek, wishing he'd get rid of his scruff permanently but no amount of dropping hints had worked so far.

"I saw you Dad, stop going on. Who'd want this phone?" she smiled, holding up the phone in a pink plastic cover.

"They could take it out," Alec huffed back.

"It's old Dad, why do you think I keep it in the case?" Daisy asked him. "Can I get a new one?" she asked cheekily as they went inside, Alec thinking it wasn't a good idea as kids were climbing everywhere.

He indicated to a quiet corner and went to claim a seat.

"How long have you had that phone?" he asked, putting his specs on and peering at the board on the side of the counter as Daisy took a seat. He already knew what she wanted.

"I've had it almost a year Dad," she replied.

"Then think yourself lucky it's not on a 36 month contract and no, you can wait for your birthday, if your mother agrees," he told her firmly as he went off to join the queue.

"So, how's school?" he asked as he put the what he called 'tacky' tray on the table almost ten minutes later.

"I'm in the sixth-form Dad," she reminded him. "I wish you'd not made me stay on."

"You could have applied for college, if you'd got your grades," he reminded her.

"You promised you'd drop that," she told him.

"Well concentrate this time and now you're away from that crowd, you'll do better."

"They were my friends Dad, I hardly see them now and when I do, they won't let me hang out with them," she told him sadly.

"Daisy, you don't need friends like that. What would you have done if your mother had not bailed you out?" he asked as he stirred his tea.

"Yeah, well she did and they got into trouble, why do you think they don't want anything to do with me? Now you know why I don't want to go to college."

Alec thought he may as well give up.

"Well I will qualify for a transfer soon, think about going with me eh?" he asked hopefully.

"Where to?" she asked.

"Anywhere, make a fresh start? We could go back to Broadchurch, now the dust has settled. No-one will know you there and they will have forgotten about me, well hopefully."

"What about that woman who you worked with Dad? You left without telling her, she'll hardly be happy if you go back, will she?" Daisy smiled. "Mum said it wasn't true, what that defence team said about the two of you. She said having met her, you argued with your DS more than you did with her."

Alec would rather forget about that.

"Yes, well, she had to live there and she did not need me there. Have you nearly finished?" he asked, trying not to be reminded of being accused of a non-existent affair.

He didn't even know what had happened to Miller, she could have finally got that promotion, it had been almost two years.

Daisy dragged him around a few shops, to see what he would buy her then they went back to his apartment, Daisy inspecting it.

"Your mother has already approved," Alec told her as Daisy put her overnight bag on the sofa.

"I never said anything Dad," Daisy smiled.

"Well you did not have to, the look on your face says it all. Is there something you want to tell me?" he asked.

"Should there be Dad?" Daisy answered defensively.

He moved her holdall and motioned for her to sit down.

"This is me, not your mum so if something is bothering you, tell me. I want to help you," he told her, taking her hand. "I know things were difficult but those friends, they were not really friends if they encouraged you to get into trouble. You do know that?"

"I've not made many new ones, some of those in the sixth form know the others. It's not easy Dad."

"I know love, then think about going back to Broadchurch with me then? Get your exams prepared for, you could always take them when we move, I can arrange for that. The school have been very good about it and how the others got to stay in college is a miracle. If I'd been in charge, I would have thrown them out."

"Yeah, I know you would Dad," she managed to smile. "I think it was because they were older than me, sorry I caused all that trouble."

"Never mind. When you go back tomorrow, I will talk to your mum, see what she thinks?" he asked.

Daisy moved away. Alec knew there was something neither she or Tess were telling him.

"Can we watch TV?" she asked, trying to sit back.

While they had been eating and discussing the finer points of Daisy's 'friends', Rose Tyler was just finishing setting up her photography studio with the help of her old boyfriend, who had driven her down.

"Think yourself lucky your mother didn't want to inspect the place," Mickey Smith grinned.

"She saw the photos," Rose grinned back.

"Yeah, well she'd probably think it was tacky enough to get away with. So when are you opening then?" he asked, picking up an album of some of her work back in London where she'd learned under a professional photographer who had told her she couldn't teach her any more and she was ready to go out on her own.

He looked around at the red brick walls, the red leather sofa and a small drinks fridge, wishing it had some bottles of lager in it, he'd have to tell her when he took her shopping. There was a silver backdrop and some white lights above it and she had just set up the camera that had cost her a fortune on the tripod and her laptop was open.

"I hope those business cards arrive on Monday, then I can take some around, pin some to notice boards and I've still got those postcards to print out," she told him, since he'd just set up the printer for her. "I'd better be able to pay for all this lot."

"Chill Rose, you'll do fine. I said I'd help for a few days next week, we can go online and put small ads in the local classifieds section of the papers. You said there were only a couple of other studios in the town. This place has parking, it's an advantage when there are screaming kids in cars who don't want their picture taken."

"Yeah, just what I need thanks Mickey, screaming kids. I hope I've made the right decision? I mean I have to make a go of it, I have that business loan to pay back. Good thing there's a studio flat above though."

"Yeah, you got a good deal and since everything's included. Why did that other bloke want to get out in such a hurry?" Mickey asked.

"I dread to think, I hope he wasn't into nude photography, I don't want teenagers turning up asking for him."

Mickey laughed. "Come on then, we'll go shopping since there's no lager or coffee," he suggested.

As Rose was just starting to get a few bookings a week later, Alec had talked Daisy into telling him what was wrong and he and Tess had been arguing again when he'd taken her back the following Sunday evening, since her house was nearer to the school.

"Why did you never tell me Tess?" he asked angrily.

"Like you would have done anything about it Alec," Tess argued back.

"I would have, had I known at the time. So you thought you would leave it and let it all die down?"

"It has, more or less," Tess told him.

"Not for Daisy it hasn't. I wanted to talk to you anyway, since you were out last Sunday when I brought her back. She needs a fresh start Tess, somewhere where she's not known. I was thinking of asking for my old job back in Broadchurch. I spoke to my boss, it'll be another month or so but he said he would ask. They have a new chief there now."

"Your old one probably got thrown out for allowing you to use her booking facilities for your old case," Tess smiled.

"That's not fair Tess. Daisy's studying for her exams, I know that but if I can get the high school in Broadchurch to agree to let her take them there? Then she can come back the odd weekend and holidays," he suggested.

"You mean turn the tables on me?" Tess wanted to know.

"This time's different Tess. She needs this and she told me you don't have much sympathy for her situation. It still bothers her you know?" he asked her.

"What do you want me to do Alec? She was with me after you left here and it never bothered you," Tess argued.

"Who ran off with another man eh? You think that helped? I'm through arguing and Daisy is over sixteen, she can choose who she wants to live with and this is what she wants. Don't make things difficult Tess."

"I'm not being difficult Alec. If that's what she wants? Try and keep her out of trouble there then."

"Is that all you have to say about it?" Alec dared ask.

"Well if you're taking her off, do me a favour and go have some nice photos taken of her, professionally, not from your camera phone and printed at the supermarket. I want them suitably framed, well cardboard ones I can put into a glass one and some smaller ones I can give to my mother and one to put on my desk. Can you do that? I heard there is a new photography studio opened, not far from where you are and they have a special opening offer. I picked up a card somewhere."

Tess went into her handbag and produced what to Alec looked like it was a little fancy for a new photo studio. He took it and squinted at the print. One side had red roses with silver lettering 'Red Rose Photography' plus the address and phone number and the other side giving the proprietor's name – Rose Tyler and the business hours.

"I will call and make an appointment then, I expect even with opening offers it will be expensive and some woman will expect a big order to qualify giving a discount," he huffed.

"Yes, well you can hardly blame anyone when they have a new business Alec. Make it for next Friday afternoon after school or Saturday morning, Daisy can meet you there, I'll drop her off," she offered.

Alec shouted goodbye to his daughter, hoping she would agree to her mother's wishes of having her photo taken and not take it the wrong way that it was some kind of photo shoot to become a model. He also hoped the studio owner, a Rose Tyler wasn't either old and would come onto him or too young to know what she was doing. He made his mind up to call the number the next morning and hope for the best.