Chapter Five

Everyone was busy working when they arrived at the theatre. Carlisle was up a ladder replacing broken light bulbs, the Doctor was at the lighting board, testing each one as they were replaced and Tosh was dragging a table, a podium and a chair onto the stage from the props cupboard.

"The cavalry's here! What can we do?" Jack called from the back of the auditorium.

"You can take over from us," the Doctor called. "Oh, and I need to borrow your vortex manipulator."

Jack took the manipulator off his wrist and handed it over. "Any reason?"

"You'll see."

Carlisle climbed down the ladder to exchange jobs with Martha.

"You okay?" he asked, concerned.

"I'm fine."

"You don't look it." Martha didn't answer. "I'm sorry if I got you in trouble."

"It's fine."

"Come on!" the Doctor called to Peter from the back of the auditorium. "We've got work to do."

"You're getting on okay then?"

"Yeah, he's not a bad guy."

Martha smiled and climbed up the ladder as Carlisle turned to join the Doctor.


The rest of the Torchwood team arrived back in Cardiff and joined in, helping prepare things.

No one was quite sure what the Doctor and Peter were doing, running around the theatre with a lot of wires, but no one had time to ask.

The broken lights were replaced, the isles cleaned of debris, the broken chairs mended, refreshments set up and the certificate of authenticity placed in the lobby under unbreakable glass.

"We're all done, Doctor," Jack called up into the stalls.

The Doctors head appeared over one of the stalls. "Good man. Now go back to base and start letting people know where this thing is. We're nearly done here, we'll join you soon."


By five that evening everything was ready and the aliens had arrived and were milling around, There was an air of anticipation in the air and a few fights had been broken up. The statur stood on the stage, covered in a sheet and guarded by Ianto and Gwen, both holding nasty looking guns.

Jack took to the stage and asked for quiet, immediately the theatre quietened and everyone listened intently.

"Good evening, Ladies, Gentlemen, Unisex, Multisex and Variforms. I'd like to welcome you to Cardiff and our little auction. You've had time to study the certificate of authenticity by now, I trust you're happy that what we have is genuine."

In the wings Martha, Peter and the Doctor were waiting just inside the TARDIS doors. Owen and Tosh were just outside, watching Jack.

"Ready?" the Doctor asked. Martha grimaced but nodded, Peter nodded.

The Doctor took Jacks Vortex Manipulator, which now had a variety if wirers connecting it to the TARDIS, the Extrapolator and the theatre itself.

"Here we go!" Carlise saw a blinding flash of light, then felt his head being pulled with such force he thought it might be ripped from his shoulders. But the force descended to grip his shoulders as another force grabbed his legs. He literally felt like he was being pulled apart.

And then he fell, landing hard on the floor of the TARDIS.

"Everyone okay?" the Doctor asked.

Carlisle did a quick check, he seemed to be in one piece. He saw Martha getting to her feet and rushed to help her.

They looked outside the TARDIS and saw the area full of the theatres occupants, only now they were in the desert, looking confused and disorientated.

"If I could have your attention!" Jack shouted. "Thank you. You've all been coming here, running around, treating this planet and its people like your own personal playthings. That stops now! For those of you who are more peacefully inclined, there's a town about a days walk that way," he pointed. "Those of you who are more interested in the statue, it's all yours."

Jack and the rest of the Torchwood team ran into the TARDIS, where the Doctor was frantically disconnecting wires from Jack's vortex manipulator. Once finished, he closed the doors and headed around the console to watch the screen.

Most of the aliens were walking away, in the direction Jack had pointed, but about a quarter of them were fighting over the statue, clawing, punching, shooting and stabbing to get closer to it.

"Live by the sword," Jack said.

"Exactly," the Doctor agreed. "Time we were going, I think." He set the controls and the central column flared into life. They landed with a bump. Only Martha Jack and the Doctor managed to stay upright.

"Right," said Jack, rubbing his hands together. "The drinks are on me! Doctor, will you join us?"

"Well, I suppose one drink can't hurt." "Right then, off we go," Jack herded his team out, none of whom had said a word since entering the TARDIS.

Carlisle held Martha back as the others headed across the Roald Dahl Plass.

"Can we take a walk?" he asked.


They headed around the square, towards the shops.

"Martha, I've never met anyone like you before. The moment I saw you, I thought you were special. Moment I met you, I knew you were." He took her hand but she was stiff and uncomfortable. "I'd resigned myself to a lifetime of being alone. I was happy on my own. Then you charged into my life and… I can't stop thinking about you. When I'm not with you, I can't wait for the moment when I see you again. It's like you've stolen a piece of me, and I'm not whole unless you're around. I don't want to be on my own anymore."

"It's not as easy as that."

"Look," he grabbed her arm and turned her to face him. "I'm not your first choice, I get that. And that's OK. If things had been different we'd both be happy living with other people. And I know it's frightening. I've been married twice, Martha, and I've had my heart broken twice. But maybe that's a good thing.

"Because we won't ever take each other for granted, we won't ever wonder if there's anything better out there, because we already know. You can spend your life looking back, wondering what might have been, or you can look forward, make what we have extraordinary.

"We're the luckiest people alive. We've been given a second chance. I'm not going to blow that, and I wont let you blow it either."

"I just need time to think." She told him.

"Don't think, feel."

"I don't work like that. Please, just give me some time."

"Fine. I'm going to book in at the hotel round the corner, you can find me there when you've made a decision. But I don't think you're a coward, Martha. I'm begging you, don't run away from this."


As Martha headed back to the Torchwood base, she noticed the TARDIS still sanding outside the Millennium Centre.

"I'm surprised you're still here." Martha said, letting herself in.

"Thought I'd recharge the TARDIS from while I was here but the rift hasn't been active for a while, takes a bit longer.

Martha sat on his chair, looking miserable.

The Doctor watched her covertly, but didn't say anything.

Finally she spoke up. "Doctor, how do you know when you've found the right person?"

He didn't need to ask what she meant. "You don't."

She looked crestfallen.

"Love isn't that easy, life isn't that easy. But that's what's so wonderful, Martha. Taking a chance, that leap of faith into the unknown, uncharted territory. It's as terrifying as it is brilliant."

"What if I can't?"

"No such thing. You only get one lifetime, Martha. Do you really want to spend your later years wondering 'what if', just because you were too scared to take a chance?"


Peter was getting out of the showering when there was a knock on his door. He called out that he was coming and pulled some clothes on as fast as he could. Opening the door he saw a man standing there.

"Delivery for you, sir. It was left at reception and marked urgent, I thought I'd better bring it up."

Peter rummaged for a tip and thanked the man, taking the parcel from him. It was a small white box, like a broach might come in, and bound with green ribbon. Opening it, he found a card resting on tissue paper. He took it out for a closer look and saw a note below.

'Go to the tourist information centre on the bay'

Carlisle looked at the card. It had his photo and a Torchwood logo. But what the hell did that have to do with a tourist office?


Carlisle entered the tourist office and saw one of the Torchwood Team behind the counter. Carlisle tried to remember, it had been a strange name. Ianto?

Ianto smiled and pointed at the credit card machine on the desk. Carlisle took the ID card he'd been sent and inserted it in the slot. A light blinked and he heard the door lock behind him. Then a book case behind the information desk swung forward.

Ianto gestured for him to pass through. He then found himself I a stone corridor and headed towards what looked like a lift at the end. As soon as he entered, the doors closed and the lift began to decent, without him pressing anything.

When they opened, she was there, casually leaning against the wall of the hub, smiling. He smiled too and before either could say anything they were kissing.


Carlisle stopped reluctantly.

"Do that on your own time!" Martha turned to Jack. Despite his stern words Jack expression was more exasperated than upset.

"Aren't I owed some holiday time?" she asked.

"And I still work for the police, right?"

"Wrong. But there's not much happening here. Take the rest of the week off, we'll page you if we need you."

They didn't need telling twice. Martha and Carlisle turned to the lift.

"Oh, and Carlisle!"

He turned back to Jack.

"Welcome to Torchwood."