Author: WhoNewbie PM
What if Martha realized she was fighting a losing battle with the Doctor just as he was realizing she was what he needed in his life? A slightly AU version of seasons 3&4 set after the events of Human Nature/Family of Blood.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Angst - Martha J. & 10th Doctor - Chapters: 23 - Words: 62,186 - Reviews: 215 - Favs: 60 - Follows: 91 - Updated: 12-14-12 - Published: 06-17-11 - Status: Complete - id: 7091790
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N: This chapter took me a little longer because I was trying to expresss my sense of the Doctor/Martha/Rose thing. First, I do not hate Rose. I just liked Martha more and so I hope what I have written doesn't come off as Rose bashing. I simply wanted to convey the differences in the relationships both women have with the Doctor. Anyhow, let me know what you think and as always thanks for continuing to read and review. I appreciate each one of you.
Chapter17 . . .
Martha was still trying to wrap her mind around the fact that the Earth was gone. Who the hell had the power to steal an entire planet? One second they were jetting through the time vortex to check out the warning they had received only to find everything in tact on her home planet, the next they were knocked from their feet back on the TARDIS and looking out into space. The Doctor tried to explain that they had not changed location but the Earth had. She had seen many illogical things, to her mind, since knowing the Doctor but this one took the cake. The Earth was gone from its orbit—an orbit it needed to survive. What the hell were they going to do? What about their families? Donna, too, carried her look of worry and even questioned the Time Lord about it but he appeared just as stumped as them. A realization that sent a cold chill through her.
He doodled with the console for a few moments before finally breaking both women from their stupors by announcing, "We need some help and the best place for something like this is the Shadow Proclamation."
Neither knew exactly what that was but if they could help explain things they weren't about to object. The Doctor quickly set the coordinates and they arrived shortly thereafter. He led them out and they were immediately accosted by a familiar foe to both he and Martha.
Donna's eyes widened with shock, "What the!"
"Judoon," Martha uneasily whispered to Donna's startled gasp.
The aliens shouted commands in their native tongue to which the Doctor replied in kind before the small group of soldiers lowered their guns and a ghost white woman with red eyes stepped out from behind them and introduced herself as the Shadow Architect.
After navigating the Architects rudeness, the group finally got down to the business of figuring out what happened to the Earth. It turned out Earth was only one of twenty plus planets snatched from its orbit. The Doctor did some calculating and discovered that the planets stolen were being used as some sort of energy conductor. It though wasn't until Donna mentioned something about bees disappearing that the Doctor figured out how to track the missing planets. The trio then ditched the Proclamation and set off to follow a faint trail that stopped at the Medusa Cascade.
Despair soon filled the TARDIS as the Doctor seemed to be out of ideas and both Martha and Donna were beyond concerned for their families' well-being. But it was just as helplessness was beginning to settle in that Martha's cell phone began to ring. All three started at the sudden intrusion before Martha checked the id. Never in her life had she been happier to see her familiar family number appear on her phone.
"Mum!" she shouted thankfully.
But her enthusiasm soon turned to confusion as she was greeted not with the relieved voice of her mother but with what sounded like static with a steady tone imbedded in it. She glanced at her two shipmates before placing her focus squarely on the intense Time Lord.
"I don't know what is happening. It could be a signal," she offered as she passed the phone to him.
He took the device from her and listened for a long moment to the sound before deducing a similar idea, "Sounds like an SOS of sorts."
Both women's faces brightened as Donna asked, "Is it from Earth? Can you get a position from it?"
The Doctor gave his first grin since their ordeal began as he whipped out his stethoscope and placed it on the phone, "Just watch me."
And with that he somehow used the phone to lock the ship onto the signal and they were whipping through time and space. The TARDIS briefly felt as though it would shake apart only to hold its own and stop with a shudder as the missing planets slowly began to come into view.
As the trio looked over the wayward spheres, which looked no worse for the wear, each sighed a brief moment of relief.
"Someone was really clever about all of this. They moved all the planets just a second out of sequence with the rest of time," he quietly mused.
"Someone who knew you'd be the one searching for the missing planets," Martha added a bit ominously.
Donna, ever the optimist, quipped to break the tension this newest revelation brought, "Good thing you're not easily thrown then isn't it?"
He gave a faint smile before the moment and their view of the planets was interrupted by static and then pictures beginning to come up on screen. First Jack popped up, followed by another former companion, Sarah Jane, and finally was Martha's mother. They all began speaking at once. Francine concerned about Martha's welfare, while Sarah Jane tried to ask if the Doctor knew what was happening but Jack's voice overcame all the commotion with a boisterous declaration, "It's about bloody time!" The American gave his most striking and relieved smile before adding, "Doctor, it's the Daleks. They've attacked Earth."
Again both Martha and the Doctor's faces went pale. Martha was shaking her head while asking, "How can that be? There was only on left when we left New York. No way that one of them could do all of this, right?"
Before the Doctor could come up with a proper response, the screen began to flicker and go to static again. Then as if they were shuttled back into a time warp, an old and familiar voice and face for the Doctor broke into the transmission.
"How indeed? Let's just say the Daleks are more resilient than you ever gave them credit for, Doctor."
The Doctor tensed before coolly replying, "Darvos? This can't be. I watched you die. I watched as your ship flew right into the mouth of the Nightmare Child. I even tried to save you but couldn't. How . . .?"
"Arrogant as always, Doctor. All it took was one stronger than you. A Dalek. Dalek Caan to be specific. He was able to succeed where you failed, reaching back through time to rescue me and by proxy securing the future of the Daleks."
It was then that Martha and Donna were chilled to the bone by a singsong voice that sounded more than a bit mad in the back ground. It was almost gaily recounting the Time War and what he had seen in his quest. Martha, who recalled Dalek Caan from their time in New York, glanced at the Doctor who looked near as ashen as his two companions. But before she could seek further information about what was being said, the creepy creator spoke once more.
"Sure he lost his mind in the process but his sacrifice will be the reason you will stand witness to the Daleks greatest triumph. He accomplished something even you, a Time Lord, could not."
The Doctor gave the character on the screen a steely glare before responding, "After everything we both lost . . . I only have one thing to say to you." He then paused and glanced over at his mesmerized companions before looking back at his nemesis and jovially stating, "Bye!"
And with that he sent the TARDIS hurdling back towards Earth. Once they landed the trio stepped out and onto a darkened nearly abandoned street.
All three glanced around at the eeriness of the scene before the Doctor finally broke the unnatural silence, "Where is everyone? It looks as if they've abandoned the streets."
"Maybe not everyone," Donna replied as she pointed towards the lone figure making its way towards them from the other end. As the Doctor and Martha turned to see what, or who, their friend had noticed, the alien was for the first time either could recall stunned into inaction. His gaze soon fell upon a face he was sure he would never see again. Rose Tyler beamed as she came closer to their cluster. When she was in better visual range, she dropped the weapon she had been carrying and began to hurriedly make her way towards the Time Lord. The Doctor was momentarily overwhelmed with memories. Her smile, her laugh, the way she looked at him as though he hung the moon . . . all their times together, traversing the universe. Rose—his Rose was back. Eventually, he managed to gather himself enough to begin towards her as well, his two current companions temporarily unnoticed. Donna and Martha could only stand by and watch the inevitable reunion.
Martha felt her heart constrict as she got her first proper look at the woman whose very essence had caused so much angst for both the Doctor and her. As her gaze raked over the younger woman, the medic could not seem to stop herself from instantly comparing herself to the blonde. Here before her stood the biggest barrier between her and the Doctor and now she could see why she'd been so hard for the alien to let go. She was physically attractive, yes, but she also exuded the kind of energy that seemed to scream "Doctor" to Martha. The other seemed to mirror back the Doctor's own liveliness. Now she was back and Martha was completely unprepared for how she felt about it. How could she compete with that? And did she want to?
The truth was she and the Doctor were still really nothing more than friends but for some reason seeing Rose made her feel as though she was losing something far more significant than a friend. Rose had returned and in Martha's mind she knew what that meant for her—what it had always meant.
Her thoughts were interrupted by a comforting hand on her shoulder. She glanced over to see Donna giving her a small smile and her arm a light squeeze. Martha forced herself to return the small beam. No matter her inner turmoil at the scene before her, the last thing Martha wanted or need was pity from anyone, even her well-meaning friend. She had walked into this with her eyes wide open. In her mind, there was always a real chance it would end up no better than the last time. Her mother's words began to echo in her mind and she realized she had no one to blame but herself for being back in this situation. She knew despite all the "progress" they had made, the Doctor would always have a place in his hearts reserved for the blonde in front of her and it appeared it remained a significant part.
Martha sighed inwardly as she observed the two wayward mates nearly reach each other. This, too, she knew would pass. No longer the naïve young woman she once was, Martha vowed to hold her head up high and be the woman she had grown into thanks to her previous time with the Doctor. She would not give any of them—the Doctor, Rose or her mother—the satisfaction of seeing her fall apart. So with a stoic demeanor firmly in place she watched silently with Donna as the pair prepared to close the last few inches between them. The lot of them, though, were unexpectedly startled out of their focus by a familiar and chilling refrain.
Before anyone could properly react the Doctor was illuminated like a Christmas tree and then collapsed to the ground. All three women cried out in unison at the scene prompting the Dalek to prepare to fire again when a blast from behind them torn the machine apart. They all turned to see Captain Jack Harkness toting a canon like gun similar to the one Rose abandoned. He had apparently teleported in and quickly joined the others at the Doctor's side. Rose was kneeling beside the fallen alien, propping his head up. He attempted to give them all a reassuring smile as he noticed each woman was near tears at his current condition. Jack, though, took control knowing the best place for the Doctor now was inside his ship.
"Alright, Ladies, we need to get him inside of the TARDIS now," he firmly commanded.
His tone snapped them all out of their stupor and each companion took a limb to gently carry him back inside. Once inside, the Doctor began faintly apologizing just before his entire body began to glow gold.
Jack rounded up the women and began ushering them to the other side of the ship.
"Everyone needs to back up and allow the Doctor to do his thing."
"His thing?" Donna questioned as her gaze remained focused on the alien.
Rose broke in, "Yeah, when he's mortally wounded he regenerates into a new body."
She looked as though she was losing her best friend even though she had just explained he would not die. Martha watched the other woman closely and noticed she was trembling fiercely. She thought for a moment to try and comfort her but it was lost when the blonde opened her mouth again and said something that bristled the young medic.
"Please, Doctor, don't do this. Don't change. We just found each other again," the young woman quietly sobbed.
Martha stilled for a moment before looking from the distraught woman to the distressed alien. It was clear this was a process that had to occur for him to survive so was the girl so selfish that she would rather see him dead than as someone different? Maybe, Martha thought, she was simply overreacting to Rose's hysterical words. Yet as she studied her predecessor it was clear the loss of this particular Doctor might be more devastating to her.
And though Martha, too, would miss this visage of the Time Lord, if he did not regenerate, just like the Master, he would perish. What did it matter what countenance he came in as long as he was there? If he did what needed to be done he would still be alive . . . still be the Doctor. As her agitation at the other woman's response rose with each of her thoughts, she was brought back from the brink of saying something that would probably be considered catty by the Doctor's gaze suddenly locking on her. He seemed to be looking to her for something. Maybe it was comfort or maybe strength to do what he must but whatever it was Martha knew she had to give him what she could. So putting aside her own frustrations and worries she nodded her assurance and gave him a warm smile that he barely got the chance to return before the glow completely overtook him.
As it appeared the light would consume him, he suddenly shift and the energy was leaving his body through his arms and being directed into the hand Jack had brought aboard the ship during their time at the end of the universe. When he turned back to the group he was still the same gangly manic Doctor they all knew and Rose who had been crying moments before bounded over to him and wrapped him in a deep embrace as she squealed like a school girl.
"You're still you. Thank God!"
The Doctor returned the hold, though, not with as much enthusiasm and blandly joked, "Well I did quite enjoy this face and wasn't ready to give it up."
He looked over at his other companions and explained, "I only used the energy I needed to heal and stored the rest of it away in handy over there."
They nodded as he finally broke free of Rose and moved over to Jack, who gave him a warm hug as well and then Donna who eyed him wearily as she said, "Are you sure you're still you? That process didn't addle your brain did it?"
"You know me . . . it takes more than trigger happy Dalek to keep me down," he returned with a cheeky grin. She returned it before he turned his attention to Martha who stood watching each of the exchanges. He held her gaze for a long moment before joking again, "It really is still me."
She gave him a light smile, "I know . . . I'm just stunned."
He nodded before leaning in and giving her a warm hug which she reciprocated. Their embrace lingered a bit before Martha slowly began to pull back, conscious of the audience they had. Yet before she could completely disengage the Doctor whispered against her ear, "Thank you."
When she did finally pull away, her gaze was locked into his serious one. She instantly knew he was thanking her for her response to the situation. Her smile brightened, "Of course. I'm really glad you're ok."
The pair shared a lingering smile that was abruptly interrupted by the TARDIS jolting, knocking everyone within the ship off their feet and they again found themselves pulled through space.