Once upon a time, Harriet Jones had a legacy. She was the architect of Britain's Golden Age, a visionary leader respected by all – especially the good burghers of Flydale North, who had never expected to be electing a Prime Minister. When she was sitting in the comfortable lounge of Number 10 at the end of a long, busy, but worthwhile day, Harriet sometimes looked upwards and mentally thanked a man with impressive ears and an even more impressive intellect.
And then the aliens came. Harriet was one of the few aware that this was not the Earth's first invasion, and nor would it be the last. She was in control – mostly – but she was devoutly grateful to see a figure whose face she did not know. A man she'd hoped beyond hope to see again.
But he stripped her of her legacy with a few, quick, cutting, well-chosen words. For countermanding him. For defending her planet. For killing invaders ready to kill. Harriet Jones was no longer the great leader, but a fallen nobody. She retired quietly to Flydale North, to her old cottage, and watched from a distance as men squabbled over her old position and Harold Saxon built up his campaign out of nowhere. Saxon worried her; she mentioned him to Torchwood but since Canary Wharf they'd had other things to occupy their time.
So Harriet herself went underground. She talked to people. She'd always been good at talking to people, and she found it was easier now she was someone they recognised. She drank tea and ate cakes and talked. She spent hours, deep into the nights, trawling the internet for trails; spent quite some time chatting to a journalist called Rook about her findings. There was more than one sort of power, and Harriet became adept at wielding what power was left to her.
She did not vote for Harold Saxon, and was entirely unsurprised when the Valiant affair went down. Through her UNIT contacts she heard rumours that far more had happened aboard that ship, but the rumours were so vague and mixed up with her own dreams that Harriet did not spend too long attempting to dissect them.
Instead, she turned her attention to the aftermath of the near-crash of the Titanic at Christmas. She suspected she had Torchwood and the infuriatingly charming Captain Harkness to thank for her new neighbour, the buyer of the spacious cottage across the street that had been lying empty for a few months. Mr Cropper, it turned out, was rich, generous and rather a long way from home, and he appreciated cups of tea and a friendly ear. Harriet suggested he invest some of his unexpected cash in useful causes, and began to work.
The network took time to build, but she rather enjoyed herself doing it. There was something invigorating about working in secret, acquiring the necessary parts and the information she needed. She wished she could have tested it. She hoped she'd never have to use it. He'd brought her down, but she wanted the Doctor to turn up, in the nick of time, as he'd always done. Mr Cropper told her of the man who'd saved the Titanic, and she'd nodded and smiled and remembered his face full of fury as he turned on her.
But when the Earth moved, when all turned into nightmares and the world shifted, Harriet Jones – former Prime Minister – was ready. She knew who she would turn to. She knew how it would end.
She knew who the world needed. It had always needed him. And if the world ended up with one less ex-MP, so be it. For the Doctor, her life was a small price to pay.
When the dust settled, Harriet Jones's legacy was greater than ever, and her name resonated across the stars. They all knew, then, who she was.