|Echoes Of Goodbye
Author: Funky In Fishnet PM
After saving the world with the Doctor, Kate Stewart goes to visit her father's grave.Rated: Fiction K - English - Family - Kate S. - Words: 910 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 8 - Published: 12-07-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8772893
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
Author Notes: Kate Stewart appeared in the Eleventh Doctor episode 'The Power Of Three'. Written because I was so affected by Nicholas Courtney's death and loved the Brigadier. I loved Kate and wanted to explore her a little more. Enjoy.
ECHOES OF GOODBYE
Crocuses lined the grave in smart military rows. Kate half-smiled, brushing her hair back behind her ears, and murmured, "At ease, boys," before crouching down to clear long grass away from the headstone. It had been too long since she'd last visited.
"No rest for the wicked, or for UNIT," she muttered. She sent an amused look towards the headstone. "I know, a scientist talking to a grave, whatever next."
She could just see his amused smile, while he said something droll about scientists not usually making a habit of arguing with the dead. She smiled back and got rid of the last of the obstructive grass. There, now the stone was clear.
"It's not military standards but it'll do," she decided, giving the stone a final pat before getting to her feet.
The marker was simple – grey granite adorned only with her father's name and his birth and death dates. Doris, his second wife, had pointed out that if they listed his military honours, they'd need more than one stone.
Kate unscrewed the lid of her flask and drank down a wonderfully warming shot of whiskey. There would be tea later and sandwiches and cake, Victoria sponge probably. But for now, there was whiskey and the cold wind whipping past her cheeks, leaving them rosy.
"Well, Dad, you always said he turned up in odd places. This time it was a suburban house belonging to a travel writer and a male nurse who wasn't wearing any trousers. Your boys got very excited about making a grand entrance. They don't get enough exercise these days."
She smiled, thinking of the UNIT men so enthusiastically breaking down the Ponds' front door. Really, there'd been no need for quite so many troops but Captain Bracken had been terribly keen. Her Dad would probably have agreed with Bracken, though he might have told a few of the men to wait outside to cover all the exits.
He would have guessed that the man in the tweed coat and bow-tie was the Doctor. Who else could it have been?
Kate wondered if she'd see that face again. Her Dad had met so many different ones.
"He really does create a lot of paperwork," she mused aloud. "Then of course he disappears without helping with any of it."
That much hadn't changed. Still, Kate had given Brian Williams her personal phone number and her assurances that she would answer all of his questions and concerns. His son and daughter-in-law were wrapped up in the Doctor's life now so Brian would be too. He also had a keen eye for the unusual occurring. UNIT could use all the help it could get.
Kate took another swallow of whiskey. Funny how she and her Dad had only really begun connecting just before it was far too late. A military career was rarely easy on a marriage and once Kate's mother had had enough, the Brigadier was not often in the picture. He'd had aliens to battle and Doctors to corral. It had taken Kate a great many years to truly understand it all.
Science leads. He'd learned a lot over the years too. The Doctor had been part of that process, and so had she.
"Dinner at Mum's tomorrow. Roast dinner, I'm told, and there may even be treacle tart if Peter remembers to put it in the oven."
Kate checked her watch. She really should go and see Doris today, to let her know about the Doctor and the fact that he had so fondly remembered her husband. It would make her so happy.
If Kate closed her eyes, she could see the green of her Dad's uniform, his peaked cap, and the daydreams she used to have about his job. She'd had no idea. She remembered unwrapping toffees with him and making tea and the disappointment of seeing him less and less until her Mum had moved them to Chichester. God, it had taken a long time for Kate to find out exactly what her Father had been doing all those years.
She remembered her Mother's tears and the long car journey and the years of silence.
She remembered a care home room, enough brandy for two, starched cotton uniforms, and her father's laugh.
Sarah-Jane Smith and her family. Jo Jones and the former Sergeant Benton and Captain Yates. Family visits.
She raised her flask to the grave and drank. Then she pocketed the silverware and briskly clapped her hands together. Her eyes lingered on the headstone. Dinner was waiting. There'd be crispy roast potatoes and her mother's homemade gravy. There were new stories to tell and a toast to give.
There was so much to remember.
She gave a wave that could have almost been a casual salute. She'd used to greet him that way, before kissing his whiskery cheek.
Now there was only her footsteps to and from a well-visited grave.
Somewhere in the distance though there would always be the sound of guns.