OK this one is for darkbunnyrabbit, in honor of her trousers icon : )
Title: In Season
Disclaimer: Standard disclaimers apply. They're like little dolls you can dress up and play
Beta: Thankyaverymuch Rosesbud for the beta happiness
A/N: This is part of the Doors series (this is #11—the rest are numbered in my profile) which was a Doomsday Fixerupper (Fixerupper ID #177805). I know I totally should have stopped, don't know where this came from, but I apologize. Apparently some folks need a recap, so here goes--
Our Story: Rose has Violet in Pete's universe, when she's a child, sometimes comes for her and Bad Wolf forces her through the Void, which has opened up just a tiny bit, due to there now being two Time Lords in the universes to hold it open. Violet is mostly raised by the Doctor, but due to some Torchwoodiness, she, the Doctor and their current companion end up in Pete's universe, Violet forces the Doctor and Rose back to the Doctor's universe, ten years pass with the void being completely closed thanks to the Doctor, before she finds a way back through. The Doctor, Violet and Jack go on a happy little adventure with a rather unhappy little ending, and that's where we're at now.
Torchwood/DW crossover with a smattering of alt!verse. Yes it all sounds very lame when I say it that way, hope it doesn't actually suck that bad in real life. The previous stories were a functional doomsday fixerupper, this one's simply for fun, but I do get the hint it's wearing out it's welcome so don't worry—the masturbatory AU/OC festival will be ending soon. And as always—if it ya don't like it, or it's not your thing, click off of it. I won't be heart broken—I have things that aren't my thing too.
Jack looked down at the Doctor, then to Violet, then back to the Doctor, lying on the grill floor of the ship, extremely unconscious. "We could, like, call Owen."
Prodding the Doctor's side with her boot, she shrugged, her thin, angular face scrunching. "Well, I guess. If ya haven't dissected him by now…"
One hand on the console, Jack leaned over the Doctor, maintaining a casual tone to his conversation. Same sh…stuff, different day. "You are obsessed with dissection. I'll have you know, I am the Name Keeper of those two little imps in the Hub conference room, which means if the Doctor and your mother shuffle off the ole mortal coil, I become their guardian, under Gallifreyan law."
Violet snorted. "Yeah, I'd like you to show me where that's written down. Or better yet—a governing body to enforce it."
Snapping his fingers next to the Doctor's ear, Jack sighed when he got no reaction. "Seriously. First we need to get this thing back to the hub then he needs someone to look him over."
There was that whole part where the alien ship they were on was trembling as it rumbled apart in the Earth's atmosphere. Briefly, Violet wondered who had jurisdiction of space debris that crashed around the poles. Well, she supposed she was about to find out.
She and her grandfather had brokered a deal the year before she'd left Earth whereby UNIT had first dibs on all wreckage not specifically within a territory or border. There had been a lot of griping from within the other Earth's Torchwood at that deal, but it saved on the fighting and near-wars caused by scavenging attempts. Her grandfather was the business man in that partnership—she'd just tried to look out for the long-term good of the Universe.
Sighing with the weight of memories that weren't very old, she began setting dials and started priming the space locator. Slamming the lever back and forth, she noted dully that a headache was building up at the base of her skull. Maybe it hadn't been a knock to the head that had put the Doctor out on the grill floor. Of course, there may have been nothing malicious about the headache at all--maybe it was just the weight of the troubles she knew were coming this Torchwood's way if the crash they were about to skate out of became public knowledge.
Trying to explain in a closed session to a bunch of military leaders and professional politicians that you saw only possibilities ending in annihilation if a compromise wasn't reached really didn't fly too well. At first they'd been trying to keep her…alienness on the low-down. After that had come out of the closet, as it were, it became readily apparent that no one was going to take the word of an alien over the manipulations of a businessman. Her grandfather had worked his mojo in those circumstances, and the world became a bit safer for a bit longer. She'd left Earth just before his bid for the presidency—it wasn't pretty, but she understood politics, and she understood how her presence would kill any chance he had of doing any more good on a larger scale.
The day she and Greg left, her grandmother had cried, the angels wept, and two international organisations dealing with off-world activities threw parties. Sometimes…she liked being hated. As long as she was being hated by the right people.
The TARDIS lurched as she dematerialised and the Doctor's head lolled back and forth but he didn't stir. "We're about thirty seconds out of the hub. If you want to call your people, fine. But don't get my mother worked up over something that might be nothing."
Legs spread shoulder's width apart, Jack held onto the edge of the console, trying not to land on top of the Doctor. "Can't, then—she'll be on the same channel as everyone else. And I'm SURE they're all at the office by now." Gritting his teeth, he looked back towards the door leading into the rest of the ship. "What's taking your other half so long?"
Rushing to another set of controls, Violet set the ship to the task of rematerialising. "I'm sure he wanted to change after he got himself all stitched up." It hadn't been a bad cut, but it had been messy. Neither of them fancied explaining things to people now days, so it was just easier for him to slip off to the wardrobe, find something suitable, and be changed and done with it before they got back to Jack's secret clubhouse.
A minute later, when they opened the TARDIS door, they were greeted with three rather unhappy looking people. Jack was a bit surprised that one of them was Ianto. One would have thought he'd be in the conference room, running after the two demonically possessed children who were no doubt tearing the place to shreds. Ianto was just anal like that. Of course, Ianto might just be saving himself the mental strain at that point—and Jack was an easier target. Owen and Tosh were a given, though.
"Guys!" Stepping out of the ship, Jack spread his arms, smiling at his team. "Good morning!"
Owen looked about as irritated as could be; his thin lips were pulled back, nose flared like a dragon. "Nice of you to call us and let us know we're being invaded."
Violet bumped Jack out of the way with her hip, holding out a hand. "Hi, Violet Tyler. Sorry for usurping your glorious leader. Just wanted one more romp with 'Uncle Jack' for old time's sake. Hope you don't mind…"
Toshiko looked from the girl's extended hand to Jack. "Uhh huh."
Ianto adjusted his tie, face frozen in a stony impassiveness. "Great. We have a family reunion on our hands."
Growing suddenly very uninterested with Jack's people, Violet ducked back behind the door, shaking her head. "Oh whatever. I am so done with Torchwood's idea of 'fieldtrips,'" she muttered, then headed back toward the control column and crouched next to the Doctor. "No offence or anything, Captain Jack, but your people suck at gratitude." She put a hand on the side of the Doctor's head. "You'd think they'd have enjoyed sleeping in this morning."
Closing her eyes, she reached into the Doctor's mind, trying to wake him. Poking and prodding, she tried to avoid memories and repetitive thoughts, and just head straight for his subconscious to nudge him awake.
He must have been really out cold, however. Even the subconscious barriers were down, and she was flooded with images before she could block them out. His last decade also hadn't been without adventure or trouble. Her mind practically exploded in the second it took her to throw up a mental barrier. She tried once more to prod him awake, and was almost invaded by things he was too unconscious to control.
Pulling her hand away, she retreated quickly and opened her eyes. "Ohhkay. That's full of not-good." Leaning back on her heels, she looked up at Jack and Greg, who'd apparently come to join them at some point in her little trek through the Doctor's head. "He's…messed up."
Sighing, the man with the close-cropped hair and the thin, muppetesque lips clomped up the ramp and to the console. He grabbed both of the Doctor's wrists, checking for a pulse, she supposed. "What happened?"
Raising her arms in a hands-off gesture, Violet stood. "There's so much love going on here, I almost can't stand it. I don't know—he was unconscious by the time we got back to the TARDIS. His mind's all…mucked up. His barriers are down, his mind's like walking into an unlocked vault right now—but HE isn't there. Or something. I don't know."
The man did the whole pulling back the eyelids thing and the general once-over. "Getting him off the floor could help. Lets get him out of here and into the infirmary if I'm going to be forced to treat him…"
Why was Greg leaning against the railing, watching her like that? "Right, like you can work anything in the TARDIS medbay. You're not taking him off the ship—I think the TARDIS is the only thing preventing him completely blasting the psychic airwaves, as it were." Lord, that was rude and snooty, and… oh look, stupid human, I'm better than you. But… well, that bloke had it coming. He was…a prick. And probably the one her mother had punched in the face, if she had to venture a guess.
Looking to Jack and Greg, she gestured for them to help. "If we can get him out of here, I can look him over in the medbay. If he's OK, we might just want to move him to the Zero Room and hope for the best."
The other two members of Jack's team were just inside the door, watching the display as casual observers. Obviously they were familiar with the TARDIS, the whole dimensional properties weren't interesting to them in the least. Which was a shame—she kind of enjoyed shocking people.
They both also moved right out of the way when her mother came waddling through, without her having to ask. God, she was… HUGE. The size of a small Latin American country, even. She rolled the sleeves of her brown canvas jacket up past her elbows. "What's he gotten himself into now?"
Violet had to bite both of her lips, holding back a smile. She'd been worried about upsetting her mother, but she should have known that Rose Tyler was better than that. "I don't know. He's rather unconscious." Ok, that was an understatement, but she really didn't have the words for it. Why was Greg still looking at her like that? Didn't he have anything better to do?
Groaning, her mother placed her hands on her back, behind her hips, as if she could reinforce support for her middle section. "Alright. So what did those things do to him?"
Jack looked to his team. "Tosh--"
Violet stopped listening when he started giving orders. She was too busy staring at her other half and soul-mate, trying to figure out why he had a half a grin plastered across his chocolate-coloured face, one eyebrow arched, and something twinkling in his dark brown eyes.
She slid next to him and away from the uncomfortably large gathering of people. Deciding that she liked the dark green jumper he'd found, she inspected the rest of him—all cleaned up, smelling quite fine, and hair slightly damp from bathing. He was trying to seduce her with soap…and it was working. "What?" she whispered, pinching his arm.
He leaned in, chin almost resting on her shoulder. "We've been back here what? Three hours? Can't stay out of trouble for a minute, you."
She shrugged gesturing to her mother and the lump on the floor. "Look who I get my genetic material from. I'm at a severe disadvantage when it comes to playing it safe."
Branden tried the whole pitching a fit on the floor thing, and Rom made a mad dash for the door, but Gwen was on to them. Completely and utterly. She spun around, slammed her hand against the metal frame and leaned against it just as the older boy grabbed the handle, attempting to yank the door opened.
The husky lad of eight moaned, his shoulders rising and falling in defeat. "Awwwww." He dragged it out like a cry of torture. "All the stuff's happening out there!"
Sighing, Gwen made her opinion quite clear by sitting on the floor, leaning against the door, jean-clad legs splayed in front of her. "We're going to stay in here where it's safe." She had no idea what sort of bad parenting the Doctor and Rose Tyler engaged in when they were outside of this base, but she wasn't going to allow these adorable (if a bit of a handful) children run roughshod in the Hub and kill themselves, be eaten by the pterodactyl or dash off into whatever danger they'd started the day with.
She wondered if there was a universal form of child protection services when the youngest one, a scrawny blonde cutie of the tender age of four began with some weird sort of sniffly whiny moany thing while kicking the glass window. "Want mum. Want Captain Jack."
Huffing, Gwen blew her raven bangs off of her forehead and looked up at the ceiling for divine intervention. "What about the Doctor?"
Rom shrugged and pulled his brother away from the glass. "Captain Jack's way better. He's got guns, and a dinosaur, and he's a captain. And, like--always stuck with the Doctor. 'Sides, he's like all…woosh." The child made a gesture like a bomb crashing into his temple, then stuck out his tongue and blew. "And like, moof. Splish. And then his brains come pouring out his ears."
Gwen liked kids. She had none of her own—her life at Torchwood was too complicated for that—but she enjoyed her boyfriend's nephews and her other opportunities to spend time with children. But she had to say…Rose Tyler's boys were…unique. "What's that mean, sweetheart?"
The younger boy, Branden, slumped against the glass dramatically, and then kicked off his shoes and socks. "His brain's all wiggly and the TARDIS says he's broken." Wriggling for a few moments, the boy eventually slid out of his shirt, leaving him in nothing but a pair of khaki shorts. "It makes me itchy."
Gwen tried not to be resentful of the team's part time assistant. Rose was extremely helpful during her times with them, but she came and went, and the duration of her employment was always the length of her pregnancy and perhaps a short time after. A lot of projects that often built up due to lack of time to do them got done, and it was helpful to have an extra set of hands in the field, which was possible if she was in the hub coordinating, in addition to her own field contributions when Jack deemed it 'acceptable.' So really—Rose Tyler was pulling her fair share. It was just…Gwen was a tad bitter about the other woman's charmed life. Granted she had seen her daughter a total of once in the last nineteen years, not to mention the things she'd been through with her family before returning to this universe, or the things she went through when she was 'out there,' in the blue police box.
And Rose was genuinely a nice, caring person. Which made Gwen feel even worse for the things that often crept into her head regarding Jack's…friends. But Gwen had seemingly put her personal life on hold for this place… and Rose Tyler only played at Torchwood, when she was putting her own life on hold—the one that consisted of being out there, in the universe—being one of the things Torchwood worked to guard against.
Picking up the boy's shirt, she tried to persuade him to put it back on. "Now…you can't run around naked."
Branden continued to writhe on the floor, seeming to use the texture of the carpet to scratch every inch of his exposed body. "Don't like…clothes any more."
Rom watched his brother, shifting back and forth from one foot to the other, wiping his hands against his jeans. "Mum's worried, and the Doctor's all mixed up."
The boy said it so seriously that she felt even more guilty for her resentment. Both children had a destiny that had been chosen for them by merit of their heritage. Jack doted upon them and pretended like they were normal children—but their games and instruction seemed to consist of things well beyond the children's years, not to mention the difficult lessons the universe had to teach.
Pulling the younger boy to her, she held up the shirt. "If you put your clothes back on, we can go see everyone."
His pale skin seemed to be breaking out in hives. Perhaps a physical reaction to whatever the boys were sensing? The other one was scratching his palms nervously, and looked as though he were about to break out in a cold sweat.
Getting Branden redressed, she made sure she had both of their hands firmly before escorting them out of the partially wrecked conference room. Two unsupervised kids could do a lot of damage very quickly—especially these two. She almost felt bad for the Doctor, having to deal with them on his own during Rose's pregnancies. Almost.
The younger boy began twisting in her grasp once they got to the bottom of the steps. She had to practically drag him across the hub. "Walk nicely," she tried to encourage, doing her best to keep her voice even. He was four—he didn't understand that he was tearing her arm out of the socket.
Rom's curly brown hair flopped back and forth as the boy shook his head. "I'm itchy too. I don't wanna go. But I wanna go." The boy made a face, his round, full cheeks bunching up near his eyes, hiding them. "Oh it's yucky. It makes my feet itch."
Gwen stopped, inspecting the uncomfortable, fidgeting children, not sure what to do. "What's making your feet itchy?" Did she go on, or did she take them back to the conference room? How had she gotten stuck on child-duty?
Rom looked to his brother. "I dunno. It's all… yucky. His brain's like… everywhere. Ugh." The boy squirmed. "The TARDIS is tryin' ta hold it all inside. But it's all…wohh… and like… and…stuff."
Making the only decision that seemed to make any sense, Gwen pressed onward with the unhappy boys. "Alright. To the police box it is. But if someone says you have to go back to the conference room, then I hope you'll go without a fuss."
The boy looked up at her with such solemn round eyes, she was fairly sure that sending them away would not help out with whatever was happening.