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21 May 2009 @ 06:28 pm
Doctor Who - Ten/Rose, Eight/Charley - Twist of Fate (PG, 9/20)  
Title: Twist of Fate (9/20)
Author: Liz/surrexi
Fandom/Pairings: Doctor Who (new series + Big Finish Audios) | Ten/Rose, Eight/Charley
Rating: PG
Spoilers/Timeline: New series: set after Voyage of the Damned; Big Finish Audios: set after The Girl Who Never Was
Word Count: 1419 (this chapter)
Summary: The Eighth Doctor unexpectedly lands in a parallel world and a blonde unlocks his front door; the Tenth Doctor answers a distress call and finds an old friend on a deserted beach. When an old enemy brings the four of them together, can they save the universe in time to sort out their own timelines?
Notes/Disclaimer: This fic would have been impossible without the encouragement and input of my invaluable beta, unbrokensky. I own nothing, everyone belongs to the BBC and/or Big Finish. Also, please note that this chapter does pick up slightly earlier than the last one left off.

chapter one | chapter two | chapter three | chapter four | chapter five | chapter six | chapter seven | chapter eight | chapter nine | chapter ten | chapter eleven

Rose stared mutely at the TARDIS that had just materialized in front of her and the Doctor. She tried to tell herself that it could be any version of the Doctor, at any point in his life. She reminded herself that she’d already run to the TARDIS once today and found someone she wasn’t expecting. She was so busy staring at the blue box and trying to keep herself from getting her hopes up too high that she almost didn’t notice when the lights went out.

Then the emergency lights kicked on and she realized that the gentle whooshing of the time rotor had nearly ceased. She tore her gaze away from the TARDIS in the corner and looked at the Doctor, who for his part had turned back to the console.

“What happened?” Rose asked, coming up behind the Doctor and peering over his shoulder at gauges and readouts of which she had only the vaguest of understanding. What little she did understand was thanks to the fact that before she’d been trapped on the parallel world, the Doctor had started to teach her how to help him pilot the TARDIS. But the console had looked – or was it “would look?” – very different then, so Rose was even less sure of what she was looking at than she might have been otherwise.

The Doctor shook his head. “Whatever it is, it’s not good.” He glanced up at the monitor hanging above their heads. “It’s something to do with Vortex energy,” he muttered.

Rose shuddered delicately. She knew how much damage that could do when used incorrectly. “What about Vortex energy?”

The Doctor called up more data on the monitor and scratched his chin thoughtfully. “It’s being looped through my TARDIS – both versions – and…” he said, pausing as though weighing his words. “I think through someone else’s.”

“Someone… else’s?” Rose said incredulously.

“Mmm,” the Doctor said distractedly. “Could be the Master, I suppose. He always seems to pop back up. Morbius? The Black Guardian?” He looked up suddenly and turned back to face the TARDIS. “Dear Lord, I hope it’s not the Valeyard.”

Rose gaped at him, struggling to keep from blurting out how impossible it would be for it to be any other Time Lord. Once again she found herself trying to wrap her mind around how it could be possible for her to visit a part of the timeline that her Doctor had assured her was locked in place by the end of the Time War. For the Doctor she stood next to right now, the Time Lords still existed, Gallifrey still hung in the heavens. For her, they didn’t – not only that, they never had, not as far as she was concerned. She shook her head to clear it.

“You don’t remember this?” she asked, though she was sure she already knew the answer. He’d told her he was in his eighth regeneration, and she knew when she had met him he’d been in his ninth. If he didn’t remember this, then maybe it was a later version of him in that box. Maybe it was her Doctor. She struggled to keep from getting her hopes up too high.

“Not at all,” he replied immediately. “Not even a little.” He shrugged. “Of course, it could still be an earlier version of me in there. If it is, I just haven’t reached the point where it’s okay to remember yet.”

They stood there silently for a moment, gazing at the silent blue box just a few feet away from them, waiting.

“What should we do?” Rose finally asked. “I mean, do we knock? Should I try my key?”

The Doctor was saved from replying by the door bursting open. For the space of a heartbeat or two, Rose was frozen, unable to do anything but stare at the one face she had been longing to see above all others for an entire year. The one face she had thought she would never see again until just a few hours ago. In that tiny space of frozen time, she took in his suit with its beloved pale blue pinstripes against chocolate-brown wool, his battered trainers, his messy hair.

“Doctor,” she whispered, sounding almost reverent in the silence of the powered-down console room.

When he spoke, his voice was low, guttural with emotion and terrified hope. “Rose.”

As if the sound of her name on his lips had released her from chains, she raced across the short distance between them, made even shorter by the fact that her movement spurred his own, so they met in the middle in a tangle of limbs and incomprehensible words that left them both breathless.

Rose’s hands found their way to his face, and she stroked her fingers down his sideburns and her thumbs along his cheekbones. “It’s you,” she said wonderingly. “My God, it’s really you. My Doctor.”

His fingers were already tangled in her hair, and she wondered if he’d noticed the slight difference in color, and he lowered his forehead to hers as if he were just soaking in everything she was. She felt something at the edge of her awareness, like his mind was brushing against hers without actually trying to get in, just seeking out her soothing presence, gone for so long. “Rose,” he said again. “My Rose.”

He tugged gently on her hair, tilting her head back ever so slightly. Gazing into her eyes, he slowly touched his mouth to hers, and she slid her hands into his hair, her fingers making fists in the spikes, like she dimly remembered doing when Cassandra had been in control of her body on New Earth. This, she thought, was much better. Much better.

A discreet cough broke through the haze of joy Rose had been engulfed in the moment her Doctor had stepped out of the second TARDIS. Her TARDIS, she thought giddily, with its coral and its uncomfortable bench and narrow hallways. She forced herself to focus on the crisis at hand and take time to celebrate properly later. After all, possible universe-endangering Vortex problems were slightly more pressing than long-overdue snogging from the Doctor. Slightly.

Rose pulled back slightly from her Doctor to look over at the other Doctor, who was watching them with a slightly gobsmacked expression on his face.

He coughed again. “Well, that was a bit unexpected,” he said calmly.

“It’s you!” her Doctor exclaimed brightly, striding away from Rose and towards his counterpart. “Oh, you’re one of my favorites, you are.” He looked around the console room, a huge grin on his face. “I always did like this particular look. The armchair was a nice touch, if I do say so myself. Good for having a cuppa between trips. And you did like your tea, didn’t you?”

Rose couldn’t help but smile at the bemused expression on the other Doctor’s face.

“I see I wasn’t at a loss for words when you were with me,” he said calmly to Rose, who stifled a laugh and shook her head.

“Not usually, no,” she said.

“Doctor,” he said, addressing her version of him. “Did you have any particular reason for landing in my TARDIS? You did save me the trouble of trying to find you to deliver Miss Tyler here to you, but all the same, it hasn’t exactly gone smoothly, has it?”

“Oh, I didn’t do this,” her Doctor replied, sobering instantly. “There’s something very wrong going on.”

“I was thinking perhaps the Master?” the Doctor said, stroking his chin again. “Or some other renegade Time Lord. I think there’s another TARDIS in the Vortex loop.”

Her Doctor shook his head. “I don’t understand how that can be,” he muttered, and Rose crossed the small distance between them to lace her fingers with his in a silent gesture of support. He squeezed her hand in response.

“Oh, my God,” said a woman’s voice from somewhere behind them.

Rose whipped her head around to look over her shoulder to see where the voice had come from and found herself looking at a young woman close to her age standing in the doorway to her Doctor’s TARDIS.

“It’s you,” she said, in much the same tone as Rose had used just a few minutes earlier. The woman stayed motionless in the doorway, staring at the other Doctor. “He said we never saw each other again, but it’s you.”

“Charley,” he said, and he strode purposefully past Rose and her Doctor, a smile plastered across his face.
mitamitashade on May 22nd, 2009 12:57 am (UTC)
Eeeeeeeeeeee! REUNION!


*sits patiently for next chapter*
mitamitashade on May 22nd, 2009 12:57 am (UTC)
Yay first!
Emily64Cooperemily64cooper on May 22nd, 2009 01:11 am (UTC)
I've waited for that for so long.
Very, excellent.

Next please?
wiggiemomsi: 8-Rosewiggiemomsi on May 22nd, 2009 01:19 am (UTC)
Ohboyohboyohboy; another chapter!!

Now, when are the Doctors going to decide to exchange companions??

faiencefaience on May 22nd, 2009 03:11 am (UTC)
Hooray! It's that happy moment where everyone gets to hang out and have fun right before they figure out how to save the universe from certain destruction. I love this bit. :D
clocketpatch: Eightclocketpatch on May 22nd, 2009 04:49 am (UTC)
Eeee! Finally started reading (don't know what took me so long what with the character list of awesome and all). Now I can't wait for the next bit!
Beka: DW: Ten/Rose monitor cutenessautumnjoy on May 22nd, 2009 05:41 am (UTC)
AWWWWWWWW! *is happy*

And you made having two Doctors in one scene completely readable and non-confusing. :)
Lily of Shalott: Eight/Rose (by tinuvielberen)lilyofshalott on May 22nd, 2009 07:39 am (UTC)
Yay reunions! Sure, there may be a possibility the universe might go "FOOM" or suchlike, but REUNIONS! ^_^

And I loved this line:

After all, possible universe-endangering Vortex problems were slightly more pressing than long-overdue snogging from the Doctor. Slightly.

I'll be over here in my little corner, gleeing, ^_^
sunnytyler001sunnytyler001 on May 22nd, 2009 08:23 am (UTC)
Squuueeee!!! Lovely reunions!
avantgardenismavantgardenism on May 22nd, 2009 12:05 pm (UTC)

*dies of lovely*
Not meant to be taken seriously.: ship warsmaypanic on May 22nd, 2009 03:15 pm (UTC)
Still enjoying this story, so much.
Twillingvangor: Mr gruff is SO HAPPYfalconsoko on May 22nd, 2009 04:48 pm (UTC)
SQUEE! and nobody got shot in the middle!!! For half a minute I totally forgot about Charley and thought Romana was going to wander in from the other TARDIS. I think 8 and 10 might actually get along with them selves too.
werefox61werefox61 on May 23rd, 2009 04:53 pm (UTC)
I totally agree with the web master's comment. I forgot I was reading too. David Tennant and Paul McGann should have done a 2 doctors episode before he left.