Disclaimer: I, unfortunately, own nothing. If I owned anything this fic would be unnecessary, because Doomsday would never have happened.
A/N: Sorry this one took a bit longer, but it's longer than the last three, so hopefully that makes up for it :-) Thanx for reviews go to: Renegade.Ranger, Moonflower '93, Hawkstra, Horsemaniac, and the last TimeLord - keep reading and reviewing!
He stepped out of the Tardis and turned to look. He had landed slightly outside of London, and in the distance behind the Tardis he could see the sprawling city, but more than that. Above it was the most fantastic thing...
Zeppelins! Dozens of them, flying slowly over the city, the one he'd heard headed lazily in his direction.
He quickly ran back inside and grabbed his coat, shrugging it on as he made his way back out. Locking the Tardis swiftly he then took off at a run for the city.
Once he reached the outskirts he began casting his eyes about for a taxi. Something niggled faintly at the back of his mind, but he pushed it quickly aside as he spotted an idling taxi over the road. He raced over and jumped in, quickly giving the driver the address.
His mind spun as he allowed himself to wonder what would happen when he arrived. He winced slightly as he envisioned Jackie's inevitable reaction, his hand reaching up to rub his jaw. He was here to take her daughter away – this one was really going to smart. 'But it'll be worth it!' he thought smilingly.
As he poured over the different scenarios and reactions he barely noticed the world passing him by outside the taxi.
They pulled up outside the mansion about half an hour later, and the Doctor was brought back to reality by the deep, scratchy voice of the taxi driver asking for his money.
He quickly reached into his pocket and drew out a note much larger than the necessary, and told the driver he could keep the change as he quickly stepped out of the taxi. The driver sped off before the generous but obviously mad stranger could change his mind.
The Doctor turned to the large imposing gates and frowned a little as he noticed the padlock holding them shut. 'Well, that's hardly practical now, is it?' The security booth next to the gates was dark and empty. The strange niggling feeling was back again, but once again he shoved it aside. Drawing out his sonic screwdriver he made short work of the locked gates.
As he walked up the long driveway he glanced around curiously. 'Looks like someone needs to have words with the gardener...it's completely over-grown!'
Finally he reached the house, and rang the door bell. Then he rang it again, just to make sure they heard. After ten minutes he decided that actually, maybe no-one was home. He began to wonder just where they could all be – after all, Pete had staff didn't he? Surely someone should be here. When it began to rain he finally decided he'd waited long enough.
Bringing out his sonic screwdriver again he quickly let himself in, and locked the door behind him. Turning, he frowned. The vast entryway looked...wrong somehow – too big, too vast, too...
"Empty..." his softly spoken word echoed harshly through the house. He quickly raced from room to room, each one confirming his suspicions – the whole house was empty. It all made a little more sense now – the untended gardens, chained gates, empty security booth...
Despair at not finding her threatened, but he quickly shook it off, and stirred himself to action. He left the house, locking the door behind him, and made his way down the drive. He slipped out through the gates, and re-chained them securely behind him. His taxi was long gone, so he took off down the road at a run, this time casting his eyes about for someone, anyone, who might be able to tell him where they'd gone.
He stopped a young man out walking his dog a few minutes later.
"Hi, terribly sorry to bother you, but do you live around here? Do you know how long the Tyler mansion's been empty? Or where they moved to?"
The man looked a little bewildered by the stranger's odd manner and rapid questioning. "I'm sorry, I'm new to the neighbourhood, don't know any Tylers though."
The Doctor watched the man walk off, then took off again. After about five minutes he saw a news-stand, and decided to double check he'd got the right date.He quickly purchased a paper, and glanced at the front.
"Okay, right date, so what's going on? Why'd they move?" he muttered quietly to himself as he quickly scanned the rest of the paper looking for any clues. Nothing even remotely strange had happened lately
Running a hand through his hair, he dropped the paper in a nearby bin. 'What now? Didn't occur to me that they'd move house, did it? Now how do I find her?'
He wandered around for a while, trying to come up with a plan. He discarded dozens before he finally lit on a vaguely workable one, and quickly made his way to a small internet cafe. He paid what he thought was quite probably an extortionate amount of money for half an hour of internet usage, and went to find an empty terminal.
Wasting no time at all, he found a web-site which allowed you to browse through the electoral register of London (again, for an extortionate fee, but a little discrete zap with the sonic screwdriver convinced the company's own computers that it had already been paid in full).
To say he was a little bewildered when a search for the name Tyler brought up no results would be to understate the matter. Had they moved out of London then? He decided on a whim to try and find Mickey, since he wouldn't necessarily have gone with them. 'I wonder how many M Smiths there are in london? Or R Smiths for that matter – I wonder which he's going by these days?'
Twenty three minutes later the Doctor left the little cafe, his hand clutching a list of the ten most-likely-to-be-Mickey Smiths. 'Time for the 'domestic' touch,' he thought with a slight grimace – he had to go door-to-door now.
'Seven down, three to go,' he thought, slightly discouraged by his so far apparently rotten luck. He hopped back into the taxi he had found, and gave him the next address.
"No luck here either mate? Who're you looking for anyways?"
"An old friend – well, an old friend of an old friend really, I suppose... Never did get on to well with Mickey myself, but I'm hoping he'll know where my friend's moved to – If I ever find him that is."
They drove on in silence for about fifteen or twenty minutes, then slowed to a stop on a quiet looking street with white picket-fenced gardens.
"Well, here we are anyway, 47 Warwick Avenue, maybe this'll be the one, heh?"
"Maybe..." the Doctor replied faintly, climbing out of the taxi. He had gotten no-where so far, and far from feeling energetic and excited, he now felt morose and fed-up – utterly fed-up.
He walked up the small path to the front door, noting the pretty plants in over-sized pots framing the front door – he very quickly resigned himself to being disappointed again. Mickey had never exactly struck him as the garden ornament type. 'Still, best to check and all that...' he thought as he reached up and rang the doorbell.
Within a few moments the door was opening, and the Doctor quickly pasted a smile across his face and looked up ready to explain that, sorry, he seemed to have gotten the wrong house.
The words froze in his throat as he saw Mickey standing there expectantly.
"Rickey my boy! Good to s..."
"It's Mickey, actually. Can I help you?"
The Doctor was thrown off-guard slightly...sure he knew Mickey hated him getting his name wrong – that was why he did it so often, after all – but he didn't sound annoyed. He didn't sound happy to see him, didn't sound angry, didn't sound anything really, other than vaguely polite. He had to know why the Doctor had come, so why didn't he seem to care?
Before the Doctor could reply another voice rang out from within the house.
"Mickey honey, who is it?"
The voice made all the blood drain from the Doctor's face, leaving him pale as a ghost. Before he had even fully processed what he'd heard and what it meant, a figure moved into sight in the hall behind Mickey.
Rose, complete with a young baby sat squarely on her right hip, looked at him blankly, before repeating – the Doctor quickly glanced at their hands – her husband's question.
His brain shut down, not quite able to comprehend what was happening. He began to step backwards, trying to get away from this terrible scene, when the Earth literally fell away beneath his feet as he tripped over a discarded umbrella on the porch, and he felt a dull thud as his head collided heavily with one of the over-sized ceramic pots he'd spotted on his way there. Before he lost conciousness one final thought flicked through his mind.
'Well, certainly didn't see this one coming...'
A/N 2: Okay, so the Doctor didn't see it coming, did any of you? As always, review to read more! Hugs xx