Mickey the Genius

By Kate Carter

Disclaimer: "Doctor Who" and all that jazz are the BBC's, not mine. Unless you're talking about the song "All That Jazz" which belongs to whoever owns the rights to "Chicago" and somehow I highly doubt it's the BBC.

Mickey Smith was dying.

And he was all right with it.

After all, dying is what one did at the end of one's life. And what a life it had been. All one hundred and thirty-two years of it.

"Gramps, did you see the Liberation Day parade? They were talking all 'bout you and Jake and the Doctor and Mr. Tyler and Rose and such." Amelia, his fifteen-year-old great-great-granddaughter said, bouncing into the hospital room. He took her hand as she stood by his bed.

"No, love, I didn't. Was it a good one this year?" he asked, smiling at her enthusiasm. Even as a teenager, she still liked parades.

"Yeah, it was. Louis and his school's band were in it," she said, referring to her seventeen-year-old cousin.

"I think he may have mentioned that to me, yeah," Mickey said.

Her face grew serious, and Mickey was reminded again that she was growing up, from a child into a young woman. She'd always been one of his favorites, having been born on his hundred and seventeenth birthday. It saddened him that he wouldn't get to see her grow up, but he'd gotten to see her father, Timothy, his mother, Marie, and her father, Peter, grow up. It had to end at some point.

He wondered what it was like for the Doctor. When he had met the Time Lord, he'd been over nine hundred years old. All the people he must have seen come and gone.

To be honest, it embarrassed Mickey to remember what he was back then. When he had first met the Doctor…well, it hadn't been one of his finer moments. What had Rose ever seen in him? It was only many years later that he realized he was a rebound for Rose, the childhood friend she could fall back on and trust after her teenage heart was broken by Jimmy Stone.

He wondered what had become of Rose. Two years after her universe was closed to her, the familiar blue box had reappeared. Mickey was there when it happened, eating breakfast with the Tyler family as he often did on the weekends.

He'd been slicing an apple up for Lily, as Jackie had fed Violet, Rose's eighteen-months and three-weeks old sisters respectively. Rose and Pete had been chatting about the President's latest speech and vague references to "budget cutbacks" and what it would mean to Torchwood, when that familiar sound of the TARDIS was heard outside. Time seemed to freeze for a moment, then with a wild cry of happiness Rose had raced outside. Stopping only to grab Lily and cram a piece of apple into her hands, Mickey, Pete, and Jackie had followed.

They had gotten outside to see the doors to the TARDIS burst open and Rose fall into the Doctor's arms, sobbing. He buried his face in her hair, and while he never knew exactly what he told her, Mickey had a pretty good idea. After several minutes, the sobbing finally stopped, Rose pulled herself off just enough that the Doctor could move, and the Doctor had walked over to where the rest were standing.

"Hello," he said, grinning at them. His smile faded nearly as quickly as it came, and he looked at them with troubled eyes. "I'm afraid I've come to take Rose back with me."

They had been standing there, in shock at the very fact that he was standing in front of them. "But…but why?" Jackie finally blurted out. Violet began to fuss and Jackie mechanically rocked her. "You're here, can't you stay here? Can't she stay?"

The Doctor shook his head. "No, Jackie, I'm afraid not," he said sadly. "I've got to return to my own universe. And I've got to take Rose with me. I've discovered enough about the future by accident to know that both of these have to happen."

Jackie let out a sob. Then, thrusting Violet into Pete's arms, she tackled her daughter into a hug. "Oh Rose! I'm- I'm going to miss you!" she cried.

Tears were starting to stream down Rose's face again. "I'm going to miss you too, Mum," she said, burrowing her face into her mother's shoulder. The two women held each other for a moment as they cried. Then Jackie pulled back from the embrace, sniffling and wiping her eyes. Rose turned to Pete.

"Dad," she said simply, and, Violet still in one arm, Pete gave her a careful hug. He squeezed her as tightly as he could. "Rose, you're fantastic, and I'm so sorry I never got the chance to be around while you were growing up," he said. "Thank you for letting me have the chance to be a dad, and to be your dad. I love you."

She clutched him as tightly as she could. "I love you too, Dad," she said, trying to keep herself from continuing to sob. She took Violet carefully, using one finger to trace her tiny sister's delicate features before she kissed her forehead softly. "Grow up to be an absolutely wonderful person, Vi," she said, before handing her back to Pete.

Next she came over to Mickey and Lily. She held out her arms, and Lily was all too happy to go into them. "Wose?" she asked, knowing something was wrong but not sure what. Rose tried to smile.

"I've got to go away, yeah Lils? I've got to go away, and I won't get to see you again. But you're going to grow up, and you'll be absolutely fantastic, and you're going to make Mum and Dad proud, right?" Rose said, trying to avoid a complete breakdown. She hugged and kissed her little sister. "You're going to be the oldest now, so you need to look after Violet, all right?" Lily nodded her head, not really comprehending but willing to give the impression that she did.

Rose handed Lily to Jackie before she flung her arms around Mickey's neck. "I'm gonna miss you, Mickey," she said, clutching to him for a moment. "I'm so proud of you, I'm so proud of all you've done and been doing. Never forget, you're not Mickey the Idiot, you're Mickey the Genius." She released him and stepped back. "Take care of them for me, will you?" she whispered.

Mickey reached for her hand and squeezed it. "I will. Always," he said, meaning it with all his heart. "And Rose…have a good life for me, yeah?"

A smile blossomed across her face, even through her tears. "Yeah," she said simply, before she turned and walked back to the Doctor. He wrapped his arm around her shoulder, holding her to him for a moment before he looked at the others. "I'll take care of her," he said, and there was an honest openness to his face that Mickey had never seen before. "And I'm sorry. I'm so sorry."

And they turned, and walked into the TARDIS, and were gone.

That had been a hundred and four years ago. Lily and Violet had grown into lovely young women. Lily had Rose's looks, and Violet had her personality. They had married men that Mickey approved of; he had taken on a role somewhat akin to "adopted big brother" since their sister had left. Lily had become a doctor, working to help those in need. Violet, with Rose's adventurous spirit, had joined Torchwood and worked with the alien first-contact team. Both were expected to live to at least 150 years, thanks to all the medical technology that had been discovered, the same technology that had increased Mickey's life by at least fifty years of what it would have been had he remained on his own Earth.

As for Mickey himself, he had gone down in the history books of this world as a hero. He had been a member of the team that had combed the Earth for five years after the Cybermen, looking for the ones who were still out there. When that was done, he'd accepted a job at Torchwood, gotten married to a lovely young woman named Tish Jones, and had three kids, ten grandkids, thirty-three great-grandkids, and was currently at fifty-eight great-great-grandkids; although it could be up to sixty at this point, he wasn't sure if Clarice had had her twins yet.

When Pete had a stroke and passed away, he became head of the Torchwood Institute. He dealt with aliens on a routine basis; from some Slitheen who had established a drug cartel to some lost Pakhar who had gotten their directions turned around. When he finally retired, passing Torchwood on to Violet Tyler, he had enjoyed twenty years with his family.

But now, it was at an end. And Mickey wasn't unhappy about it. It was time.

He'd come a long way from the boy who'd had no thought of life outside of his planet, and had been turned into a quivering mass of fear when he'd encountered it. Rose's softly whispered words rang through his head as if she'd just said them.

"Never forget, you're not Mickey the Idiot, you're Mickey the Genius."

Yeah. Maybe he was.

"Gramps?" Amelia was watching him carefully.

"I'm sorry, Amelia. I'm just tired. Perhaps you'd better go on home," he said. She squeezed his hand, then impulsively leaned over and hugged him. "All right, Gramps. I'll see you later. I love you," she said, face muffled against his chest. He stroked her hair gently. "I love you too," he told her. She gave him one last smile and left the room. He sighed and closed his eyes.

Two hours later…

"Mr. Smith? This is Dr. Taylor, from Royal Hope Hospital. I'm sorry to inform you that your father has passed away."

A/N: Wow. This wasn't really intended to be a reunion fic in any way; it was meant to show how much Mickey had changed. But it got away from me…was that good? Bad? Let me know, leave me a review!