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I Am Clever

alec_towser


A Fine Line - Between Chaos and Creation

Everybody seems to think I'm lazy; I don't mind, I think they're crazy...


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UNIT!100 - 098. Writer's Choice (Betrayed).
I Am Clever
alec_towser
Title: Like a Knife
Fandom: Doctor Who
Characters: Mike Yates, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart
Prompt: 098. Writer’s Choice. (Betrayed)
Word Count: 868
Rating: K
Summary: It hurt him more than he cared to admit.
Disclaimer: I own nothing but my own OCs, should I create any for these stories.
Author’s Note: Mentions of circumstances from the audio drama The Rings of Ikiria and the serial Invasion of the Dinosaurs, but should be able to stand on its own.

———

Mike Yates hadn’t been with UNIT for very long, having just transferred out of his previous regiment several months earlier, but he had quickly fallen into a routine of sorts. The people at UNIT had made the newly-appointed Captain feel welcome, and he soon felt right at home - more so than he ever had before. He trusted them all implicitly, especially the Brigadier, who Mike looked up to.

What was that saying about trust, though - “Years to build, seconds to break”? It certainly felt that way, as he was receiving a spectacular dressing-down from the Brigadier. The Brigadier hadn’t seemed to regard any of his opinions as valid during this entire affair with the alien being known as Ikiria, dismissing him as simply “blathering on” and his concerns as “little fantasies”. While it was rather unusual behaviour for the man, and Mike was relatively certain that he was being controlled by the ring he had received from Ikiria, he couldn’t deny that those declarations had stung.

It didn’t get any better, either - the Brigadier’s full wrath was now being turned on him, and Mike couldn’t understand why. The Brig was the one who was clearly disregarding all proper protocol and not listening to any of his concerns.

“Brigadier, I appreciate things don’t look good-”

“Don’t look good?!?! You certainly have a knack for understatement, Captain. Now, I want you to relax all the perimeters surrounding Ikiria’s ship, and to redirect all available resources to look for the Doctor.”

“But the Doctor can look after himself! Brigadier, things are happening here, and we’re not adequately investigating the most obvious developments! With the imminent arrival of members of the British Government, the last thing we should be doing is relaxing our hold over Ikiria. Particularly while she’s continuing to hand out these rings…”


Then things had really all gone downhill. The Brigadier had rounded on him, barking, telling Mike that he was delusional and that maybe being attached to UNIT wasn’t the best thing for him. Then he had taken the metaphorical knife that had just been stuck into the Captain’s gut and twisted it, saying he would promptly be RTU’d - sent back to his previous regiment up at Fort George in Inverness.

Mike could only stand there in stunned silence as the Brigadier had made the arrangements for his immediate departure, feeling like he was being banished. UNIT was his home; he couldn’t really be sent away from it, could he?

And yet, as he was escorted to the UNIT helicopter to be transported away from the investigation and his life at UNIT, all he could see were the impassive faces of his former troops, uncaring that he was leaving. In particular, Sergeant Benton had sported the slightest trace of a sneer on his face, as if to say “Good riddance”. That reaction had hurt; he had thought the friendly Sergeant was his friend.

As the helicopter lifted off to take him back to London, all Mike could think of was the fact that he was now powerless to stop what was going on: he had no authority anymore, and no way of contacting anyone who did. He could see the Brigadier’s scowl in his mind, telling him that his word wasn’t good enough, and therefore not worth keeping around. And that betrayal had hurt more than he cared to admit.

———

Operation Golden Age had just been stopped, and UNIT was cleaning up the mess. The Brigadier sighed as he sat in his office. He was not looking forward to having to file the paperwork on this one - not only had General Finch been in on the plan, but one of his own men had been involved as well.

He rubbed his forehead, feeling a headache coming on. What could you say in a report about your second-in-command turning traitor, especially when you had never had any problems like this before? This was so much more serious than simple insubordination; this was a clear breach of trust. Captain Yates had betrayed UNIT and sabotaged their efforts to stop this project, all because he thought it was in the world’s best interests.

He didn’t want to see Yates court-martialled, but it looked as though there were no choice, given his actions in the matter. The Doctor had determined that he hadn’t been brainwashed or under any kind of alien influence - the Captain had wholeheartedly believed that what the Golden Age conspirators were up to was the right thing to do.

While he may not have spearheaded the plan, the Captain had still been a willing accomplice, even going so far as to hold himself, the Doctor, and Sergeant Benton at gunpoint to ensure their compliance. The only difference between him and any other villain that UNIT had dealt with in the past was that this attack had come from the inside, from a man that he respected and worked with closely.

He put his pen down, unable to find the words to write on the report. To have one of his men casually betraying him like that, and essentially throwing the trust he had been given back into his face…that hurt the Brigadier far more than he would ever admit.


X-posted to FF.net, Teaspoon, AO3, and unit_family.