Title: Lessons

Author: DagniroVanaliel

Summary: The Doctor takes on another companion. She's sixteen, hates the world, and would really

rather not be there. But she has nowhere else to go, and an important lesson to learn...

Disclaimer: Doctor Who and everything related to it belongs to the BBC and... well, let's just say it doesn't belong to me.

Feedback: Any and all, please.


Chapter One


There's this girl, right? This perfectly ordinary sixteen-year-old girl. Yeah, I know what you're thinking. It's one of those stories--typical human girl finds out about a larger world and goes off to have some wonderful adventures, meet lots of new friends, and save the universe from time to time.

Wrong. That's not one of those stories.

Anyway, I was this perfectly ordinary sixteen-year-old girl from Nowheresville, Kansas. I had a couple friends, a crap life, and a talent for getting out of trouble. Getting into trouble, that's the easy part; anyone can do it. It takes a certain finesse to not get caught or, conversely, get caught and not have anything happen to you.

I constantly cut school, shoplifted, graffitied buildings, did all sorts of stupid teenage misdemeanors. It wasn't even an escape from homelife. Because I think that, compared with my friends (or at least the people I hung out with) I had it pretty good. My mom and dad cared about me and my brother annoyed me. Come to think of it, everyone annoyed me.

I was not the happiest person in the world.

So it came as a real shock one day when I woke up and... everything was gone. My family, my friends, everyone who had ever acknowledged my existance and cared (namely my family and the three people who ran from the cops with me) had been wiped off the face of the Earth. Those who still existed couldn't see me.

And then I saw it.

A blue box.

Yeah. Here's the part of the story where our heroine is swept away into the magical world of space travel and time travel and aliens and life-or-death and she falls in love and saves the world. And in the end she is regarded as this great hero who saved so many lives and taught so many people the meaning of living life to the fullest, until she sadly departs...

Wow, you really suck at this, don't you? Because that's still not me, and that's still not my story.

This is actually the part where a tall, slim man in a pinstripe suit steps out and says his first word to me:

"Oops."

He's got a sort of British accent.

From there I learn that there was a paradox centred around me, and if he hadn't intervened I would have died. Instead, he jerked me out of this reality and into another and I could never see my friends or family again and I was probably going to die anyway so d'you want to come with me?

By this point my entire head was spinning. Everything... was gone. Gone, like that. Everything I'd ever known was gone, and I realized that I hadn't really hated my life and now I felt like a terrible person. But since no one can see me or notice my presence, and since I realized I didn't really want to die after all, and since I was sixteen and had no money or anywhere else to go, I agreed.

I told him I was eighteen. He still doesn't know it was a lie.

So he takes me with him in his spaceship, because it is a spaceship, bigger on the inside than the outside and for some reason that doesn't really bother me. He says his name is the Doctor and he's an alien and that doesn't really bother me either. And he introduces me to his two friends, an American man called Captain Jack Harkness and a black girl from London named Martha Jones.

"Hi," I say, feeling kind of stupid. "I'm Katie." Because my name really is Katie and I don't feel like giving my last name. I never use it anyway.

They smile, kind of thin-lipped. Who is this interloper? I can almost hear them thinking.

"Katie's the girl I was telling you about," the Doctor says. I wonder what he was saying about me, but then decide it doesn't really matter.

I see them exchange a glance, and I'm pretty sure no one's ever reacted like this to the Doctor and his ship. He calls it the TARDIS. I wonder briefly what that stands for, then shake my head as I figure it might not stand for anything after all and asking might be an insult.

And then I wonder why I care.

"Er... right. There's a room down that way you can have," the Doctor says nervously. "Jack, will you show her...?"

And the man called Captain Jack nods and leads me out. And I wonder again why I can't be more stunned and amazed and thrilled with it all, but I'm not, and for some reason that worries me.