Summary: Martha has a favourite statue. And it's about to change her life.
Spoilers: Um, this will probably make more sense if you've read The Stone Rose. But it's not vital.
Author's Notes: It's a stream of conscience, done in an hour story. Judge accordingly. Hell, just judge. I love useful reviews.
Disclaimer: I don't own the rights to Doctor Who, whether in the TV form or the (barely hinted at) novels.
Martha had a favourite statue. It wasn't grand, or spectacular or really very remarkable to anyone but her. It was of the Roman goddess Fortuna, and was beyond a doubt the most detailed statue she had ever seen. Every detail was painstakingly copied, every line recreated onto the marble. A mystery, one only she knew about. And so, for years, it had been her favourite. On bad days, she would visit it. Sit beside it, try to imagine the the story of the model's life. And she supposed, in some tangential way, the devotion she had inspired in the sculptor.
Today had been one of those days, and so Martha found herself navigating the familiar path to her Fortuna. For it was hers, in its way; few gave the statue a passing glance. They favoured other pieces, famous pieces.
And so she pulled up short when she found a man standing in front of Fortuna, studying her intently. He was running his hand across her face, and Martha was almost certain she heard his words.
I'm sorry. So sorry.
"The model must have been very beautiful," she said, trying to be friendly. And maybe (just a little) trying to judge the stranger's interest in her statue.
He turned. His piercing eyes left her breathless. The look was a strange juxtaposition of a lost little boy and a world weary man.
"To... to inspire such devotion. So much attention to detail."
Her words sounded shallow, her tongue tripping over itself in an attempt to form some coherant sentence.
"She was. She was the sculptor's good luck charm."
The certainty with which he spoke comforted Martha. It told her that she was not alone in her fascination, that somebody else had speculated. Been captivated by the mystery. It gave her the courage to take the last few steps towards him, to study the statue by his side.
"Her smile is so... warm? Like she really has the power to bring luck. I used to sit beside her when I was little and talk. Didn't matter what about, it was like she listened."
"She had that affect on people," he replied. "She could draw a confession from anybody, if she tried hard enough. And they'd feel better about it. She was... fantastic. Spectacular."
Martha nodded. Silence ensued, both of them distracted by the marble figure.
"He made it from memory, you know," the brown-suited man finally said.
"How- how do you know that?" asked Martha, desperately trying to understand why she believed him. It was completely illogical.
"I knew the sculptor."
The man raked a hand through his hair, sighed and turned away. He was almost out of the room when Martha found her voice.
"Who made it?"
Oh, it was crazy. He couldn't know this any more than he could know the purpose of Stonehenge.
He was joking. He had to be. Right?
But she knew he wasn't.
He had turned and started walking again.
"Wait!" she called out, running after him.
He didn't slow, but she quickly caught up to him. There were a million questions she wanted to ask: who was he? What was he? How? But he was looking at her, tears in his eyes and an entire universe hidden in them, and she knew. Deep down, she knew enough.
She shifted under his intense scrutiny.
"She had to do it one more time," he muttered, broodingly. Then his expression lightened. "What's your name?"
"Martha. Martha Jones."
"Well then, Martha Jones. Let's go. Time waits for no man. Except me, of course."
And he left. Martha took a deep breath, squelched the niggling feeling she was making a mistake, and went after him. After all, Fortuna wouldn't let her down.