Running his hand over the rough surface of the mine wall, Frederick Wells sighed. He hadn't found a thing in this mine for weeks now. No more diamonds were left, he was sure of it, or if there were, he wasn't going to be the one to find them. Out of the corner of his eye, his torch caught his discarded watch. It was late now, time he got himself home, back to his family, though he knew his wife would complain anyway, always saying he spent too much time at work, not enough with her and their children. He rolled down his sleeves, picking up his watch and strapping it on. The second hand didn't work, it was stuck hovering above the 6, but the watch itself was still working perfectly. Frederick ran a finger over the face. It was a little scratched through years of wear and tear, and the gold paint around the edges was slowly peeling away, but it was his father's watch, he didn't plan on getting rid of it anytime soon. He made his way up the mine, towards the exit, the air becoming clearer, lighter with every step. The warm January air hit his face as he reached the outdoors. It was already dark out, and the sky was glittered with a million stars. Frederick inhaled deeply, glad to be out of the dusty mines in which he spent most of his day. As superintendent, he found he arrived earlier, and left later than all his miners but he didn't really mind. It was a job. It paid pretty well. He set off walking home, it was only ten minutes down the road, after all, just as a pink streak flashed across the sky, falling to earth. A large ship, mistaken by the locals as an asteroid, crash landed ten miles from the nearest civilisation.
"DOCTOR!" Donna Noble's voice boomed over the TARDIS intercom, causing the Doctor to roll his eyes.
"Donna! I'm busy!" he continued fiddling about with the wires in his hands, placing his sonic screwdriver in his mouth.
"DOCTOR, GET IN HERE! NOW!" Donna yelled. The Doctor rolled his eyes once more, dropped the wires, and transferred the sonic screwdriver from his mouth to his hand. Donna did have a habit of making him roll his eyes.
"What is it? This better be important" The Doctor made his way along the TARDIS corridor, stopping next to the second room on the right. The door was open and he stepped inside, glancing around. In the far corner of the room, Donna Noble was hanging from the ceiling, her foot caught in an old rope.
"Get. Me. Down. Spaceman!" she growled, attempting to rotate her body to face him. The Doctor pursed his lips, trying to hide his laughter. It didn't last long and he burst out laughing, walking the distance of the room in three strides.
"Oi!" Donna growled, frowning, as the Doctor pressed his sonic screwdrivers to the rope wrapped around her leg
"Sorry Donna, but that was just very, very funny" he grinned as she dropped onto a pile of pillows that he'd placed below her.
"I'll show you funny.." she picked herself up, dusting herself down. The TARDIS lurched, shuddering gently. Donna grabbed hold of the rope she had just been hanging from, trying to stop herself falling.
"Donna! Quick!" The Doctor yelled, grabbing her hand and running with her into the console room.
"What? What is it?" Donna asked before the TARDIS lurched again, throwing her towards the jump seat. She threw out her hands, clinging to the old, battered chair, as the Doctor struggled to reach the console.
"I don't know..." he pulled himself around the console, flicking switches, pulling levers and pressing buttons at the speed of light while Donna continued to cling to the jump seat. With a gentle growl, the TARDIS threw Donna off the chair and onto the floor.
"OW!" she exclaimed, pulling herself to her feet as the TARDIS landed "What happened?"
"A disturbance of some sort.. Can't work out what... but we're.. somewhere" he glanced to Donna before his concerned look turned to one of excitement and he pulled on his brown coat, striding towards the door. Donna dusted herself down, looking slightly annoyed and made her way, a little more slowly than the Doctor, to the exit.
"I won't" Zina stared at her father, a determined look in her eye. No way in hell was she going to go through with it.
"You will or you're on your own" Her father sat in a beaten old armchair in the corner of the room, glaring over at his daughter. Zina thought about this threat, her jet black hair clinging to her face and cascading down her back, brushing against her waist. At fourteen years old, she was still quite small for her age, reaching only 5'1. To strangers, she looked frail and weak, but those in the neighbourhood, the boys especially, knew she could run and jump and fight just as hard as they could, or maybe, on a good day, even better than them. Her large brown eyes stared at her father, Ohin, as he rose from his feet, gripped her by the shoulders and gave her a gentle shake
"We NEED this" he hissed, his face inches from hers. She inwardly flinched, but remained determined on the surface. She wasn't going to be bullied by her father.
"Why not?" he gave her another shake, a little more firm than the previous, his fingers digging into the flesh on her bony arm.
"I don't love him"
"What's love got to do with anything?" he growled at her, forcing her up against the wall so hard that her body made a sound against it.
"You loved Momma.." she fought to keep the tears from her eyes, "Anyway, he's an old man!"
"So he'll be dead within a few years and you'll inherit it all!" her father's fingers dug into her shoulders, painfully, and Zina winced "All he wants is a pretty little wife who won't answer back for the rest of his days. You can do that"
"NO!" Zina struggled to pull from his grip. Who was her father kidding? Not answer back? Her?
"Yes you will! Now get to bed" he let go of her, almost violently. "You're going to him tomorrow, so get a good nights sleep!" he growled at her, walking into his bedroom and slamming the door. Zina rubbed her arms. A bruise had already begun to form on her dark skin, and it already hurt. She blinked, a single tear rolling down her cheek, as she sank to the floor.
"Where ARE we?" Donna asked for what seemed to her to be the millionth time. The Doctor seemed to refuse to answer her as he glanced around, his hands deep inside the pockets of his suit trousers. "I think we're in Africa..."
"Africa?" Donna looked around "So where are the lions?"
"And tigers and bears? Come on, Donna.. Africa isn't covered in lions, you know.."
"Alright, space boy... Why did we crash land in Africa?"
"We didn't crash land.. we merely... bumped"
"Bumped? Technical term for crashed?"
"No, a technical term for..." the Doctor swallowed "bumped." Donna rolled her eyes
"So is there a reason we.. bumped?"
"I don't know.." he turned and looked at the TARDIS door, running a hand gently over the wooden opening. "What is it? What's wrong?"
"Do you two want a minute?" Donna asked sarcastically, frowning at the Doctor. "Do you expect her to answer you?"
"She usually does" the Doctor stepped away from the TARDIS, walking along a stone path which lead towards a small village in the distance.
"What? Really?" the Doctor didn't answer, he just continued to walk towards this village. Donna sighed, walking quickly to try and catch up to him. "Doctor!"
"Come on, slow coach" the Doctor turned, grinning at her, walking backwards for a few steps before turning around. Donna caught up to him, linking her arm through his. "'Bout time..."
It was dark when she slipped outside, but she knew the way like the back of her hand. Making her way along the stone path, slowly, her sandaled feet padded lightly on the dry earth, Zina walked the long walk to the house of the only man who ever understood her. Salah, her beloved Salah, he'd help her, save her from this cruel twisted game her father was playing. He had to. She didn't know how to do it without him. She glanced down at the dust which lay on the path, each step leaving a trail of dusty footprints. Her father would be able to follow her, though in honesty, she knew he'd know where she had gone anyway. Even he was not that foolish. She continued walking, her eyes scanning the expanding darkness that lay before her. Complete darkness.. except.. there was something glowing just on the horizon.