Life on the Waves (HH/Life on Mars Crossover)
`My name is DCI Gene Hunt I was top of my game in 1973 till some bastard who couldn't
drive to save his life knocked me down. Next thing I knew I woke up in 1799 on a ship in
the middle of the ocean and everyone is calling me Hobbs. Have I travelled back in time, or
am I nuts or lying in a coma? Maybe if I figure out why I'm here I can find out how to get
home. Why am I speaking to myself like this? It's not like this is a TV show or anything.'
`I woke up lying in a stinking hammock wearing some poncey fancy dress with some
pillock bellowing at me to shake a leg `cause I'm wanted on deck. So I says to him…'
"Go get stuffed! I'm not going anywhere. I give the orders round here."
"No you don't, sir. The captain gives the orders. Now will you kindly go on deck?"
"Nope." `Then the coward goes running off.' "Go crying to your mum then! Pansy!"
`When he came back there was this burly bloke in a similar uniform accompanying the
"Mr Hobbs," growled the uniformed bloke.
"My name aint Hobbs, it's Hunt."
"Sir-," the officer prompted.
"You will show respect for a superior officer."
"Who do you think you are then?"
"You know who I am `obbs."
"Refresh my memory…sir."
"This is insubordination. I will inform Captain Sawyer of this and have you clapped in
"Lieutenant Wolfe, sir," cried a voice through the hatchway. "There's a French sail three
points to starboard."
"I'll deal with you later. Do your duty and you might be shown some mercy."
`A Flogging! I'll bloody flog that weasel myself next time I see him. See how he bleedin
likes it having the flesh from his back torn out. Oooh, that canes. The todying whatsit is
going to get what he deserves. If there's one thing I know it's if you get in with the boss
things get a whole lot easier. Especially if you can get some dirt on him.'
`Getting caught up in a full blown battle is not my idea of a fun, give me a bottle of Jack
Daniels instead any day. But the cogs in my head have been turning. I've worked out how
I'm going to get home. If this is a dream than if I get knocked out or killed then I'll wake
up in some nice cosy bed with some bird in a nurses outfit tending to my every whim.'
`I didn't ask for this. This is not bloody fair. All the heat, noise and the blood…and I had a
corpse, no you couldn't even call it a corpse the state it was in, came flying past and
knocked me down. I've never seen the like before and I've seen plenty of horrific things in
my career. Half the crew strewn across the deck till it was a pool of blood.' He ran his
fingers through his hair as he tried not to let his hand shake. Voices in my head, lots of
voices all speaking at once. He's tachycardic…life signs spiking. It's like he's preparing to
fight. `I was bricking It, but Gene Hunt doesn't get scared, he just doesn't…he can't…he
won't…There I go again speaking in the third person. Why do I do that? My head,' increase
the dosage…but doctor…do it!
`The shaking has stopped but I'm not taking any chances. It's a blumin tragedy. I'm not a
pansy with soppy feelings. This is not my world. I want to get back where I belong, now!'
"Gene Hunt does not wear poncey stockings like a big girls blouse," he growled to himself,
hitting his fist against the wooden sides of the ship.
"The Captain wants to see you," said the Midshipman from just out of reach of a good
"Piss Off! The Gene Genie does not take orders from spotty oiks not yet out of short
"Bite me," snapped Hunt stepping forward as if he were going to strike the midshipman,
but at the last minute restraining himself. "You're not worth it. Break too easily."
"I'll report you to the captain. Striking an officer is a court martial offence."
"Court Marshal my arse."
"Hello," said the little woman standing beside his hammock. `Strange thing is she looks
like the figurehead.'
"Hello, luv. You fancy a bit of the Gene Genie?"
"Dear, me. You're still full of crap aren't you? All mouth and no trousers."
"That can be arranged."
"Take a look at yourself…and consider what you are, what you are becoming. Once you
figure out your true self, then-,"
`She started to move back with the walls further and further away.'
"Hey! Where you going? You didn't finish what you were saying! Come back! Come back,
that's an order!"
`Hauled up in front of the big guy…not that big guy, I mean the captain. An owl-like old
codger with eyes that darted about like `e were afraid. Allo, I thought, he's got some thing
"Mr Hobbs," growled Captain Sawyer. "Idle hands are - in a coma. There's nothing we can
do - Has the cat got your tongue?"
`What? I was sure I heard him talking with another voice for a moment. Don't have a clue
what the old duffer is on about.'
"Responsibility that's what you need to keep you out of trouble. Guv, Guv, can you hear
`It's that winy Tyler's voice. What the blummin eck is going on? My head is pounding like
I've drunk a whole party seven all to myself. The pounding like a drum beat…argh!'
"Are you still with us? I won't have an imbecile on my crew!"
"Sorry, sir," I mumbled. "Did you hear…oh, it doesn't matter-,"
"Spit it out! No need to be shy."
"I can hear voices, sir."
"You too...we must stick together you and I, against them."
"Against who? The Voices?"
"No. The backstabbers who masquerade as officers. Your name Hobbs isn't it?
"Yeah, like the biscuits…sir."
"I have a proposition for you."
`Ay-up this sounds a bit suspect. I'm not going to be no cabin boy.'
"I…I can't be everywhere and they're always plotting. I need a spy, someone to keep an
eye out for me. If you can be my eyes and ears I'll see you right."
"You watch my back and I'll watch yours, sir."
`Captain Sawyer paced the deck in front of me a mad look in his eye accentuated by the
blood dripping from his forehead. I've quite taken to the position of gunner…involves
blowing lots of things up and waving around a cutlass and pistol. Ha.'
"Should we go get `em, sir?"
"Pursue the dogs to the end of the world if necessary."
`Were getting a new compliment of crew…well…if you call them a crew. My lot at CID
would have a better clue about how to behave than this bunch of ingrates.'
"I said wait for my order before you hoist it you numpty," bellowed Hunt, at the sailors
trying to sway up the net full of provisions. "Handsomely, now, handsomely." `Can't
believe I'm using that phrase.' "Woah!"
`The net suddenly took on a life of its own, swinging across the deck almost flattening the
idiot standing in its path. Then the blummin lieutenant had the cheek to try and blame
`I try to sleep…but I can't. Every night, laying back listening to the creaking if the hull and
the sound of waves crashing always seemed to be punctuated by the sound of a ventilator.
It's bloody annoying. And this lack of sleep is getting on my wick. I've definitely been
thrown into a lions den, with backstabbers and arse kissing. Its like eating an egg mayo
sandwich from the station cafeteria, risky but if it's the only sarnie left and your stomachs
doing the Edinborough Tattoo your only option.'
"I must have the crew on my side," grumbled Captain Sawyer. "Any ideas Hobbs?"
`I have to remember not to correct him.'
"Well, I'm parched, sir."
"Excellent idea!"`Eh? I was only hinting I wanted a whisky from his drinks cabinet.' "Extra
tot of rum for everyone."
`Not what I wanted, you tight git, but it's better than nothing I suppose.'
"Oy! Mate, watch it!" `Took at a swipe at some bastard that thought he could shove past
"You watch it, damn your eyes man," the sailor yelled, spitting with anger.
"I'll give you something to worry about."
"You throwing a hissy fit Styles?" said Matthews placing a restraining hand on his friends
shoulder. "It's not worth it mate. Just get back to work or you'll be in trouble."
"No use wasting me precious time on this scum," growled Styles.
`Now we could have parted as enemies with pride intact but that great big idiot spat in my
face. Well I don't put up with that kind of disrespect.'
"You're asking for a hiding you are."
"Why don't you-,"
"Styles, don't do anything stupid."
"Yeah, be a good lackey and do as you're told. Don't do anything stupid." `Tyler said that
we should keep talking to you. So here's today's newspaper. Oooh, look City won-,' "Chris
you ruddy pillock!"
"Sir?" asked Matthews, a little disconcerted. "Are you feeling alright?"
"Of course, I'm fit as a bloody fiddle," snapped Hunt, storming off down the gangway.
`Why, oh, why, oh, why? Why me? Why this place and why can't I just wake up?' He closed
his eyes, wishing himself back home.
"You can if you want to," said a voice.
`The figurehead woman again. What does she want?'
"Back again so soon. We've got to stop meeting like this."
"Always the sarcasm but its really just hiding the frustration, the loneliness of command,
"I don't need no shrink."
"All your friends visit you, but your wife she hasn't come to see you even once. I wonder
why that is?"
"You keep my Mrs out of this. She's a cracking bit of skirt and a diamond to put up with
the likes of me alright. And no one bad mouths her, except me, understand?"
"You can threaten all you want but it won't get you anywhere."
"Not hit rock bottom yet? When you do you'll be able to lay on your back, look up and see
who you are."
"I don't have a ruddy clue what you're on about!"
"What motivates you Gene Hunt?"
"I'm not taking advice from some watery tart who talks in riddles!"
The bell marking the time pierced the night air as the woman disappeared like a puff of
smoke. `That reminds me I'm dying for a ciggy, wonder if the captain of the marines has a
"The first one to speak did it. Mark my words…Hunt's Law," Gene mumbled to one of the
marines, as he looked up from where he crouched beside the prone captain. `If only I had
Tyler's poncey forensics. Just have to investigate the old fashioned way. It was one of them
the middy is my chief suspect but I'm sure that one of the lieutenants is behind it. Hello
Guv, I'm brought some music thought you might like. Cartwright? What's that bird doing
"Mr Hobbs," called down Hornblower. "Are you still with us?"
"Aye, sir." `Stupid jumped up toff. You see I used to say that out loud till I found out what
stroke from the cat'o'ninetails was like. Learned to keep my mouth shut and focus all my
frustration into one killer look. I also get to fire a big gun…so not all bad then. No
mutinous officer is going to stop me getting back home. I borrowed one of Sam's tapes,
made a little compilation. `fraid its recorded of the radio so you might get a bit of chat on
the end of the songs. Cartwright, you know medical stuff get me out of here…wake me
`I have to stand by and watch him be treated like an invalid by the very ones that put him
in that condition. He is the only one that believes me and he was trying to help me till they
put a stop to it. Gene Hunt is loyal and he seeks the truth...sort of. At least I can do my job
and investigate an attempted murder. That's why I couldn't leave with Randal and the
deserters. I would be abandoning my only escape. Maybe this is what will send me back to
my proper time. Heads up, here comes trouble.'
"You still hanging around like a bad smell Hobbs?" sneered Styles.
"Remember to watch your tongue Styles or I may have to ensure you remember," he said
stepping forward menacingly. "You see you're not safe from my wrath."
"Hobbs! Styles! Get up here immediately!" called down a voice.
`The action against the fort was a success…just about. That pipsqueak Hornblower
throwing about orders as if he was the captain. Abandoned Lieutenant Bush because of a
hunch. Of course I had to follow orders, no matter how stupid I think they are. Carrying
the barrels of gunpowder in search of a secret tunnel.'
`The marine sergeant eyes me up as he sits back smoking a pipe, the lazy sod, thinking
bad of me because at least I'm loyal to the captain.'
"It's alright sergeant I'll take care of the captain from here."
"If you're sure Mr Hobbs?"
"Oh, I'm sure." `You lazy oik. Why don't you piss off and do something useful.'
`Yeah, that's right go, and shut the door on your way out. He's not mad, the captain. He
said they were mutineers and that's what they've done, taken control of the ship by
twisting the facts. I have a good mind to plant some evidence, but a hanging would be too
good for them,'
"What are the up to those lieutenants? My own ship, my own men."
"The usual sir, just playing at command."
"You must help me…you must help me stop them."
"How, sir?" `I asked picking up the razor which the steward had been using previously to
shave the captain. I hope I never have to suffer that indignity, being treated like an
Guv? Can you hear me? We got the guy that knocked you down…he was driving while
under the influence drugged up to the eyeballs.
"But I have my orders, sir." `I rather like my neck, don't want it stretched thank you.'
"And now you have a new order, from your captain. Release me at once!"
"Can't or won't? You haven't become one of them have you?"
"Then untie me, that is an order."
"If you insist." `If he wants to play it this way, let's see if we can't give the nonce a heart
Hunt untied the straightjacket. "Don't move, sir. We must have the element of surprise."
"Hmm? Oh, quite right, but give me the razor."
"Give it to me!"
`Now, with the amount of laudanum Dr Clive had poured down the captain's throat I'm not
sure it is the best idea.'
Too late the captain snatched the razor away just as hurried footsteps could be heard
approaching. The door flew open and in rushed Lieutenant Hornblower.
`Just look nonchalant.'
"On deck if you please Mr Hobbs," ordered Hornblower.
`Make me you bastard.'
"Off came the cage out leapt the tiger. I'm going on deck now, stand aside," said the
captain, razor held like a dagger.
"Mr Hobbs the captain will be confined to quarters," he insisted.
`Don't speak as if the captain ain't there. It's not polite. Now he's spouting some namby-
pamby nonsense. I don't believe this.' Hunt noticed what the captain had done with the
razor now it wasn't pointing at the lieutenant. `It seems I was wrong…but I'm never wrong.
He's not well.'
"Sir-," `Taking the razor from his now bleeding hand where he had gripped it so tightly I
feel…guilt. The second time in my life I've blindly followed a superior and not noticed that
they were ill or corrupt. If I had spotted it earlier something could have been ruddy done.
Is this what I'll become some poor misguided wreck?'
Hunt watched as the sailors set up the winch on the cliffs to hoist up the cannon.
`Another one of Mr Hornblower's plans. Ha. I will do right by the captain and find out what
bastard pushed him down the hold…once and for all. The Gene Genie doesn't give up. I'm
a good copper and I always get my man.'
"Forgive me sir. I've yet to congratulate you for your fine work in the tunnels," said Hunt to
Mr Wellard with more than a trace of sarcasm. `Time to interrogate one of the chief
suspects. Put the fear of god into the snotty nosed mummy's boy.'
"Thank you, sir."
"Though the way you held that gun it's was like you'd never held a gun in your life."
"Well, it had a light trigger."
"Have you...ever shot a man?"
"You might find a knife easier…stab a man…in the back, that's an easy one. Or just push
him down the hold. You little snot…"
"I did not push him." `You liar.'
"You were so high on laudanum you wouldn't know if you did." `Junkie.' "Watch yourself
`There's no better way to let off steam than firing pot shots at enemy ships. What is not
tickittyboo is being ambushed by rebels and being left to spike the gun. Noticed none of
the poncey lieutenants volunteered.'
`That guy has more lives than a cat. Bloody hell, he should have died, at least that's what
Buckland was planning on. But all three lieutenants survived. For that he gets some
begrudged respect. What pisses me off is what he did to the captain. Now, I'll see if I can
jog his memory-,'
"Captain, sir…why don't you come for a walk with me, get some fresh air."
Hunt lay back in his hammock…still dressed, contemplating his next move.
`Its no use he's lost his mind. The laudanum has done its work, taken what lucidity he had.
I only have to hope my bluff works and one of them breaks. My money is on the little snot
"Have you found it yet?" `The figurehead woman again.'
"Can't you go irritate someone else?"
"You figured it out yet, why you are here?"
"No! And I don't care. Unless you are here to take me home I'm not interested."
"Only you can do that."
"Quit talking in riddles!"
`Shouting…a cry to arms. We're being attacked! It's the bloody prisoners! What idiot let
them out? The captain, he's vulnerable.'
`They hate me. And now the noose mocks me. I could ruin them all with one word…before
I wouldn't have hesitated but now…I've changed. Learned to control my temper which
helped me sharpen my wits and be a better detective. Maybe Tyler was right. That
courtroom is just a witch hunt, whoever I name will die, but I can't grass them up without
ruining everything. The captain is dead. He was a leader of men and died in battle like a
good leader and I'm the only one who knows the truth, but is it worth it though. Is it really
justice or am I a Judas?'
`Gene Hunt, it's your moment…what are you going to do?'
"He was as good as Nelson in my books-,"
"Do you know who pushed Captain Sawyer into the hold?"
"He was a leader of men and he died in battle…but I cannot tell you who pushed him."
`Relief. It's done now. Still have to wait for a verdict though. Hopefully the real culprit will
confess. I'm no grass. Eh-up, what's going on here? MrKennedy?'
"I confess," said Lieutenant Kennedy, looking very unwell. "I and I alone pushed the captain
down the hold."
`This can't be happening. Quick! Come quick! I heard him say something! You must be
mistaken Mrs Hunt.'
"I'm here! I'm here love! Get me home! Look I'll do anything, click my heels together and
say there's no place like home, please!"
`He's coming round.'
"Yours is not the ugly mug I want to wake up to," grumbled Hunt, as he lay in the hospital
bed. "What happened to my Mrs?"
"She's powdering her nose," replied Sam, with a grin. "You feeling better then Guv?"
"Ready for action Sammy boy," he said rubbing his hands together. "What have I missed?"
"You've been in a coma for two months."
"Ballsed it up haven't you? Can't wait for me to comeback-,"
"Actually, it's been running quite smoothly without your input."
"Well, you might not have missed me but I bet my loyal subjects have. What's the matter
with you? You look like a guy with something to say-,"
"Spit it out or I'll leave my sick bed to beat it out of you!"
"Did…while you were in the coma…do you remember anything?"
"Don't have a clue what you're on about son. Don't even start with all that psychobabble,
I'm not interested. Now go fetch the Mrs. I said now!"