What would I become?

A/N: This is most definitely an AU story. The idea came when I had watched about half of "The Next Doctor." I thought for sure the story was going to end with the (next) Doctor dying, and this is the fic that came as a result of that thought.


"You've never actually been up?"

"I can depart in the TARDIS once London is safe…but finally when I'm up there-think of it John. Time and space..." His voice trails off wistfully.

The Doctor turns his head to look at him, a strange look in his eyes. "The perfect escape."

And for a moment they stand together, gazing at the stars.

But then the Doctor breaks the silence. "Do you ever wonder what you're escaping from?"

His face darkens. "With every moment."


And so the Doctor tells him.

Oh how he tells him.


"…But I am the Doctor."

He says it simply.

He says it without hope.


"I am nothing but a lie."


...


The Doctor stands there. Thinking.

About what he would be if you took away his TARDIS.

And his sonic screwdriver.

His psychic paper.

All his tools and treasures, lovingly carried through the years…

What would I become?

All he would have left was his name. It wasn't even real…

But…still…

It reminded him of who he was. Who he wanted to be.

And the Doctor thinks…What if they took away my name?

What would he be then?

Nothing.

He would be nothing.

And the Doctor suddenly shudders, standing in the street, looking at the man sprawled across the ground.


"He's dead. Jackson Lake is dead."