Rating: NC-17 This story contains sex - don't say you didn't know! Disclaimer: The characters and situations of the TV program "SPACE: Above and Beyond" are the creations of Glen Morgan and James Wong, Fox Broadcasting and Hard Eight Productions, and have been used without permission. No copyright infringement is intended. Dylan Mackenzie belongs to me.

Once again - MANY THANKS to Karen, she's the bestest beta ever, and Vasalysa - who showed me the dark side!

Comments are always welcome at Geek




Chapter 1

Moira sat in an old comfortable wicker chair in the shade, watching her grandsons sleep in their buggy. She had taken them for a walk by the loch soon after Dylan had left to take her driving test. Moira hoped for Dill's sake that she passed, she'd been so determined to do it. Iona, Dill's best friend, had been helping her practise driving around the estate. Of course, getting around with these two monsters was becoming harder and harder, especially now that they'd both finally found their feet.

Moira smiled to herself. Hamish had run her ragged this afternoon. He had, of course, been the first, at 9 months, to walk. She suspected he was going to be early with a lot of his development. Hamish was a loud, talkative little soul, easy to make laugh and easy to tears - usually of frustration, when he didn't get what he wanted. Cameron, on the other hand, remained a placid soul. Smaller than his energetic brother, he'd taken his first steps a week ago. Now, at just over 11 months, he was a watcher. He took in everything around him, and Moira was convinced that when he finally spoke he'd surprise them all with real words, not the baby chatter of his brother.

Of course the pair of them were the image of their father, Lt. Colonel TC McQueen, commander of the 58th Squadron, USMC Space Aviator 5th Cavalry. They had beautiful blond curls, which to Moira's disgust, Dill kept cut short. They also had striking blue eyes that varied in shade according to their moods. Moira sighed, hating the fact that her daughter had the effrontery to fall in love with and marry a tank. After her own experiences with Dill's father, she considered all artificially gestated men to be the tank scum they were. How could anyone who spent their entire first eighteen years in a tank know anything about love and commitment?

However, looking over at the sleeping boys again, she had to admit that he and Dill had beautiful children. And they knew exactly how to get grandma to do whatever they wanted. Glad as she was that McQueen wasn't around, Moira almost hoped he wouldn't come back from this war and she'd be able to keep the boys forever. It was a mean and spiteful hope, and she knew it would break Dill's heart if that happened. But it was Moira's greatest fear that McQueen'd turn up one day and take Dill and the babies away with him. The only word Hamish could say clearly was Daddy. Dill had been coaching him for weeks, ever since she realised he was saying da.

Moira shook her head. The boys wouldn't know their father when he finally showed up anyway. She smiled gleefully at that thought. It'd take McQueen down a peg or two to realise his children loved her and had no idea who he was.

At the sound of footsteps, she turned.

"I passed!" Dylan yelled at her, running up the path waving excitedly. "I was so scared, but I did it. I can't wait to tell Ty. He told me I could do it. He'll be so proud."

"Shhh… the boys are asleep." Moira scolded. "I walked them up to the loch and back. You really must think about teaching them to swim, Dylan. Hamish nearly went in so many times, I think the boy's half fish!" She gave Dylan a sly look. "Mind you, it probably has more to do with his father being used to immersion in water than anything else."

"Mother! That's another dig at Ty being an invitro and I want you to stop right now. I already know how you feel. Ty does too. But I will not have you saying such things in front of his children! It's hard enough as it is, without you making comments like that. I want them to hear good things, so they'll look forward to seeing him." Dylan sighed. Why did she let her mother get to her so much? She knew that her mother adored the babies, and they adored her. She just prayed that they'd at least smile at Ty when he finally got some leave and came to see them. She missed him so much. It had been 9 months since she'd last seen him, when the babies had been born on the USS Saratoga. Despite the problems her turning up had caused, she was glad he'd been able to see his sons born.

Moira stood. "Well, Dylan, I knew you could do it too, and I have a present for you. It's on the counter in the kitchen. Put the kettle on while you're there - I could do with some tea."

"A present? Mother, you really didn't need to." Dylan said, giving her a hug. "Thank you."

"Wait until you've seen what it is before you thank me." her mother said, bending over the sleeping children, checking on them. "You know, I think I wore them out. Hamish walked the whole way there and back. Cameron, of course, decided it was easier to be pushed." Moira looked up and realised she was talking to herself.

A squeal came from inside and she smiled. Dylan had found the present, obviously. She followed her daughter into the house.

"Mother, a car! You've bought me a car!" Dylan bounced in place, beaming, waving the keys she'd found. "Thank you so much! I'm so excited!"

"Don't thank me, not really." Moira said, sitting down at the kitchen table between the two highchairs. "Remember that trust fund your grandfather left you?" At Dylan's nod, she smiled. "Well, although the money's not yours until your 30th birthday, as a trustee, I felt you needed a car now. It's parked behind my house, complete with two seats for the boys."

Dylan was almost jumping up and down. "A Range Rover!" She stopped for a moment, a frown on her usually cheerful face. "Will my feet reach the pedals?"

"You've been out in mine, haven't you? Your feet reached those pedals easily enough. Of course you'll be able to drive it. It's top of the line, with plenty of room for the boys and the buggy too. There's no point getting anything that doesn't have four wheel drive up here. You know what…" her words were drowned out by the anguished wail coming from outside.

Together they went to look. Hamish, on awakening, had decided that he was going to wake Cameron too, and was in the process of pulling out what little hair his brother had. Despite the fact that it was his hair being pulled though, Cameron wasn't the one wailing. It was Hamish, who had taken exception to Cameron sharpening his one tooth on his arm.

Moira laughed. It was always the same. Hamish would bite, hit, or just generally abuse Cameron, who took it all placidly, but the moment his brother retaliated, Hamish screamed. Dylan ran forward. "Hamish, no!" she told him, prying his fingers loose. "Cameron, no!" she told her other son, removing Hamish's arm from his mouth.

Unbuckling them, she allowed Hamish to toddle to his grandmother while she picked up and cuddled Cameron, rubbing his fair hair where Hamish had been pulling it. "This is why I keep their hair short, mother." she grinned. "Hamish gets less of a handful. Now then, let's try that car out for size, shall we?"

Moira picked up Hamish, sniffing. "Let's just do some nappy changing first. This one smells a little ripe." she laughed. Tickling the boy under his chin, she told him, "And daddy gets to miss all the stinky jobs, doesn't he? Lucky daddy."

Dylan smiled proudly as Hamish responded perfectly. "Daddy" he said, with a huge smile.

With both boys changed and freshened up, and after struggling to get Hamish strapped in, for he hated restraints of any kind, they set off for a drive in Dylan's new car. As they drove along the side of the loch, Dylan grinned. "You know, mother, this is possibly the best thing you've ever given me."

"I'm sure that's not true." her mother sighed, not wanting to argue about it.

"I think it is." Dylan whispered, glancing in the mirror to check on the boys. They seemed to be enjoying themselves, she thought. Hamish was gaily banging his cup against the window, chattering to himself, while Cameron had nodded off again.

They sat in silence for a while, until Hamish started saying his only clear word, over and over again. Dylan smiled. She just hoped he'd actually say "Daddy" when he saw Ty.

"Dylan, how do you think they'll react when they finally see him?"

With a quick glance at her mother, Dylan murmured. "I'm hoping they'll recognise him and at least smile at him."

"Recognise him? What do you do, flash pictures of him at them?" her mother laughed.

"No, not exactly." Dill frowned. "You won't like this, mother, so please don't start shouting in front of the boys." At her mother's stern look, she carried on. "I have an optical disc player. I send Ty children's books and he reads them out loud to the boys. I use them as bedtime stories, or a way to keep them amused for a little while. They can see him and hear his voice. Of course I send him discs of the boys as well - in the bath, having their breakfast, asleep in their cots, crawling, walking, just being themselves… I don't want him to feel left out."

Her mother was silent for a while, then, "Dylan, you know how I feel about that. It seems to me that ever since you met him, you've flouted all the rules of the Community. You go outside the grounds almost everyday, when you have no need to… you sneak in optical disc players… what else do you do?"

"Nothing, I swear." Dill smiled at her mother. "But the boys really need to be able to see their father. You can't deny them that, surely. And no matter how much you hate him, he deserves to be able to see his children."

"I don't hate him, Dylan." Ignoring her daughters disbelieving look, Moira continued. "It's just that I really didn't want you getting involved with a tank. Why the hell do you think I started this place? I didn't want you called a tank brat, nor have to suffer the bigotry that goes with it. Now look at you… not only married to a tank, but with tank brats of your own!" She shook her head to dissipate her rising anger. "I despair of you."

"Mother, it's your own fault. You sent me off to the Saratoga. With, I might add, no warning about where I was going, nor why I was going there. Can you blame me for falling for the handsome marine I found there?" Dill smiled

"Yes, I can. There were plenty of others on board that ship. You could have fallen for one of them. But you didn't have to fall for anyone at all!" Moira told her, keeping her voice low.

"I had NO idea about invitros, mother. Ty was so angry with me at first." Dill fell silent, remembering what he'd told her when she asked him to explain.

"Invitro's are a race of artificially gestated humans." At her blank look he'd carried on. "We were 'grown' in a tank. That's why people call us tanks. Created to do the jobs no natural borns wanted to do."

She'd put out her hand to stop him. "Natural borns?"

"That's you." he'd nodded at her angrily. "Born naturally with real live parents. Tanks don't have parents; we're decanted at the age of 18. Into indentured jobs, often at the place we're expected to work - usually until we die."

Dill shivered at the memory of Ty's voice; it had been harsh, and filled with anger.

"You should have told me, mother - you really should have. I felt such a fool! Still, it worked out for the best. I mean, I met Ty, and I have two beautiful sons… what more do I need to say?" Dill smiled contentedly at the thought of her little family.

Moira shook her head. "Well, you certainly have that. But I wanted so much more for you, Dylan. I've always blamed your lack of ambition on your invitro genes." Her mother sighed.

"More, mother? I'm perfectly happy with what I have. The only thing that would make me happier is having this war end and Ty come home to me permanently. Though goodness knows what he'd do with himself. I really can't see him as anything other than a soldier. I guess he'd be based at Loxley or somewhere."

"That's what I'm dreading." Moira said softly. "The day he comes to take you and the boys away from me."

Dylan looked at her mother. She could hardly believe what she'd just heard. "The boys mean that much to you?" she whispered.

"Of course they do! They're my grandchildren, after all, and I've watched them grow up, just like I watched you. You're my daughter, and however much I may hate your father, I don't blame you for his actions. Just as I don't blame the boys for who their father is. I do have to admit though, he has damn beautiful children."

"Make the most of them mother - I doubt I'll have any more!" Dylan laughed.

"Goodness, Dylan, I should hope not! Two is enough for anyone!"

"Oh, I don't know." Dylan replied, wistfully. "I wouldn't mind another one or two. Of course, Ty would have to agree. But then, we might not get lucky again."

"After the hell you went through with these two, you'd be willing to do it again? Goodness, Dylan, have you taken leave of your senses?"

At that point Hamish started to cry, as his cup hit the floor. He woke Cameron, who also started crying. The noise was unbearable.

"And you'd like more?" Moira grinned.

"They're hungry, I expect. Let's take them home and feed them." Dylan laughed. "And yes, mother, I'd love to have more babies. Lots and lots of them. A whole horde of little blonde mini-Ty's."

At her mothers sour look, Dill just laughed more.

Next : Chapter Two
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