Setting: Post-season 4 for Ten, waaaaay after Chosen for Dawn.
Characters: The Tenth Doctor, Dawn and a couple of OC’s later.
Word count: 520 and 965
Disclaimer: They’re not mine. They’re not Morag’s either.
Summary: Dawn, the Doctor, and the rest of our merry band discover even more hazards of traveling in the TARDIS when you're also the Key to all worlds.
The third in the A Girl and Her Time Lord series.
Author's Notes: Yet again, written by myself and moragmacpherson cliffhanger style, desperately trying to stump each other. She does the first part in each post, I do the second.
Part 5 - Doors and What Lurks Behind Them
“I feel ridiculouth,” said Clark, his serpentine head now topped with a berry-colored beret. “How in the world thith ith thupothed to theem macho ith beyond me.”
Dawn smiled. “Let’s just hope we don’t run into the guy who your uniform is supposed to fit. They’re growing them tall in Britain these days, I guess.” She rolled up the sleeves on her new uniform.
“At leatht they’re making them out of cotton. Cotton breatheth.” He strapped his gun belt around his waist. “Tho, fearleth leader, where to next?”
“Well, I’ve got a brand new sonic screwdriver and piece of psychic paper. Then again, I also have a bowel disruptor.” Dawn sighed. “Much as I’d like to test the bowel disruptor on Martha, I suppose we should find a computer terminal for me to gather information from first.”
Dawn peeked out the door first, then Clark followed. Around the corner there was a large door guarded by two stern-looking UNIT soldiers. Probably top men. Dawn chose to deal with this by ignoring them completely and striding straight through the doorway. She did this so well that by the time Clark was passing through the soldiers had saluted her passage. He used his tail to slam the door shut behind them. “Well done, Dawn,” he said.
Dawn smirked. “It’s a good thing that the schools aren’t as good here as they are in Mbatanoss.” She sat herself down in front of the main computer terminal. “Now, let’s see what’s up with the Daleks and Cybermen.”
There weren’t nearly as many soldiers crowding this portion of the UNIT facility, the Doctor noted. The corridors themselves seemed darker and poorly lit in comparison, just enough to give him the willies*.
Captain John was either oblivious or an excellent actor, blithely conversing with Martha about the weather and relative fit of the UNIT uniform on her ample curves. Martha didn’t seem to react to any of his digs, which notched up the willies to 1.5** “Doctor, you shouldn’t,” was her only response as she guided them down the hall.
John held back a few steps and to fall in line with the Doctor. “You’re right. There’s definitely something wrong here,” he whispered. “I should have her phone number by now.”
“Don’t give anything away, just keep up the banter, would you?” hissed the Doctor. He swatted John on the butt for good measure, and the Time Agent scurried back to the lead position with Martha.
“So where is this machine room you mentioned?” he asked.
Martha turned and grinned. “Right through here, Doctor.” She pushed the adjacent door open.
Both the Doctor and Captain John peered in. “Oh, shit,” said the Doctor, “I was really hoping it wouldn’t be that.”
*A mere 1.2 on the Doctor’s personal scale of the willies, where 1 willie represents finding a pair of his companion’s discarded panties dangling from the railings, and a 10 represents Davros attempting to give him a tongue kiss.
** Jack Harkness announcing he’s discovered a new use for any piece of hardware on the TARDIS.
Part 6 - In Which the Tone Lowers Even More
It was big, it was orange and it looked like a pile of faceted dull crystals connected together by roots and ganglia. It sat there in the middle of the room on a bare table, almost staring banefully at the three humanoids in the doorway.
“I hope you’re up on your organic crystallography, ‘Doctor’,” said ‘John Smith’ with a certain amount of relish. “That much I can recognise, but the details are way beyond me.”
John Hart flashed him a grin of triumph. “Fifth year University course, mate. Studied under Professor Jerusalem himself.” His face fell slightly as he flicked one of the crystals with his fingernail, and a dull tone rang out flatly. “Huh,” he eventually said, examining the connections to the ganglia. “That’s well and truly buggered, ain’t it?”
Momentarily, Martha’s face flickered into an expression of horror, before rapidly returning to normal. “But you can repair it, Doctor? I’m sure we can obtain any parts you require.”
“Honestly? I’m not even sure what it’s meant to do in the first place, luv. You might be better off junking it totally.”
“No!” said Martha quickly, “We’re fairly sure it’s got something to do with the Daleks and Cybermen ghosts, so we’d prefer it to be repaired.”
“Good point,” said the Doctor thoughtfully, and bent down to look closely at the blob before him. Pushing his glasses back up his nose, he bent forward to prod one ganglia in particular, only to jump back as a spark of electricity leapt forward, stinging his fingers.
“Careful, Freckles,” smirked John, taking out the sonic screwdriver from his pockets and waving it around above the orange thing.
The Doctor stared at him, then began franticly patting down the pockets in his brown suit. “Hey! The sonic screwdriver..!”
John raised one eyebrow in his direction, sighed very loudly, and offered the screwdriver back to the Doctor. “What do you think of these readings, Mr Smith?”
The Doctor almost snatched it back, but remembered Martha was standing by the door just in time. “You have no idea what you’re doing with it at all, do you?” he muttered, starting his own scans.
“Quite right, Mr Smith,” boomed John cheerfully, “I do believe that to be the case.” He waggled his eyebrows enticingly in Martha’s direction, which she ignored. The Doctor’s willies went up to 2.2*.
“At a rough guess, I’d say it was some kind of postbiological enviromental network integrated system, probably connected to a warp drive of some kind which again probably crashed, leaving the vortex intermittently connecting through to our world. If you could reactivate it and reset it to local coordinates, it might stop.”
“That’s a pretty exact rough guess, Freckles,” said John, impressed. “Wait…., did you just say ‘Postbiological Enviromental Network Integrated System’?”
The Doctor nodded absently, and continued looking closely at the crystals before him, completely missing the expression on John’s face. “And how… how would you reset it?” John managed to get out in a strangled tone.
“Oh, some sort of Local Integrated Co-ordinates Knowledge unit should be easy enough to create.”
Captain John Hart lost it completely at that point.
~ + ~
“That’s funny,” said Dawn thoughtfully, fingers flying across the keyboard. Her search of the local UNIT files had produced tons of information, but not quite what she was looking for.
“What ith?” rumbled Clark from where he was keeping watch by the door.
“I’m getting different readings across all the different scientists’ reports as they’re studying the temporal phantoms. Probably nothing, but it’s still nagging me…”
“Well, how are you thearching their findingth?”
Dawn frowned. “Alphabetically, of course. Start with Professor Abbot, read all his reports, move on to Dr Carter. Why?”
“Jutht thinking out loud. The quicker we get thith over with, the quicker I can remove thith thupid berry thing.”
“Beret, not berry,” Dawn said absently and returned to her searches. “Maybe I’m thinking too 3-D this time. Maybe I should take it one step further…”
An idea hit her, and she typed away furiously on the keyboard for a moment. Her face turned white as she stared at the results. “Oh god,” she whispered, “It’s just a matter of time.”
She felt Clark’s reassuring presence beside her, but couldn’t take her eyes away from the screen. “I put all the data together, but this time in chronological order. The loop… the loop is failing…. Some point soon, the intervals between the appearances of the Daleks and Cybermen will get smaller and smaller until they achieve a one-to-one ratio with our timeline.”
“You mean they’ll be actually phythically prethcent here?”
“And then all that killing and dying we see, will be us instead.”
~ + ~
In a hidden control room, the watching figure turned away from the viewscreen where Captain John was still rolling about on the floor, laughing hysterically.
“Bah!” he hissed, before turning to his companion. Raising his claw-like hand, he pointed at the two humanoids on the screen. “I trust this Doctor very little. This Smith may come in useful, but the Doctor may well be too dangerous to let live for long.”
His companion studied the screen intently. “Yes, I have memories of his resourcefulness.”
“Find this TARDIS of his and secure it elsewhere. I feel it is best that we have another threat to use if he should choose not to repair our equipment. Those companions of his remaining within should prove sufficient inducement.”
“I obey, leader,” saluted Captain Erisa Magambo, the British UNIT commander, and left.
2.2 on the Doctor’s willie scale of course, being the point where he’s introduced to his companion’s mother for the first time, rising to 2.3 if their arm shows any sign of twitchiness.
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