Wrote this a long, long time ago. Basically, the Pandorica Opens and the Big Bang episodes never happened.

Loads more to come...


CHAPTER 1

Last night, like every other night, she had dreamt of a blue box: a blue box whirling through the vast expanses of time and space. Though she did not recall ever seeing such a contraption, she could not escape the inexorable pull of familiarity, of recognition. However hard she would try to stay dreaming, she could never be there long enough to meet the box's owner. She did not speak of it, and rarely thought about the dreams when she wasn't tucked up in the comfort of her bedcovers. She did not want people to think she was crazier than they already did.

Ella Pond was not unpopular, but it was fair to say that she was perceived as an odd character by most of her classmates. She was not shy, far from it, but did not share in the raucous jokes of the boys, nor find much interest in the incessant gossiping of the girls. She had her boyfriend, Zac, an insider-outsider like herself. They were friends with the popular people, but never quite made it themselves. Even her mother remarked in frequent measure upon her daughter's atypical personality, which bordered on downright insane at times. Nevertheless, it would not be fair to say that Amy Pond was anything less than devoted to her daughter. Ella was her only child, and she herself Ella's only parent – and that was the way it had always been.

If there was one thing that Amy and Ella did not discuss – aside from the bizarre dreams – was the identity of Ella's father. If Amy knew, she did not say, and ever since Ella's first curiosity, aged five, the subject had become insignificant in the Pond household. Nobody knew, apart from Amy herself, and that was that. Ella had always been a Pond, her mother's maiden name, and didn't like to think of herself as anything else. Despite the smallness of her family, Ella was not a lonely girl growing up. She was forever in the presence of adults – friends of her mother's, her great-aunt Sharon – and had her friends at school, but it was clear to Amy, Ella, and those who knew them well, that the company they preferred best was each other's.

Saturdays were a blessing at the Ponds' – a blissful lie-in (punctuated occasionally by fitful bursts of blue-box dreaming from Ella's bedroom), breakfast at the café round the corner, and a day of no-homework, no-housework freedom. This morning, however, felt different. Ella started awake, and found herself sitting bolt upright. The clock by her bedside flashed 7:00, and Ella remained still, listening out for the thing that had awoken her. There was nothing there – the house was silent. Passing it off as nothing, Ella settled down into the cave of duvet and pillows, determined to finish the rest of her dream. She had dreamt of the blue box again, and tonight she felt closer to it than ever. For the first time, she had gotten near enough to it to see the small white letters on the side: "POLICE BOX". She had also managed to make out several other characteristics of the mysterious flying box, such as its windows and door. What would such a "police box" be doing, soaring through space (for she assumed that the deep black of the surroundings was nothing like the Earth's own atmosphere)? Nevertheless, Ella was determined to find out more.

"Ella Amelia Pond, do you want me to drag you out of bed?" Ella was once again shocked out of sleep. This time, however, the source of the noise was clear. Amy Pond was Scottish, and living in London for the past fifteen years hadn't smothered the distinctive rhotic accent. After Ella had managed to stumble out of bed, she slipped on her dressing gown and made her way towards the hallway. A quick glance at the clock made Ella start. It now read 6:00. The clock had gone back an hour whilst she was sleeping.

"Ella!" Amy yelled again, so loudly that Ella had to cover her ears to muffle the sound.

"Alright, I'm up!" she yelled back, hurrying down the stairs. She had absolutely no idea of what she might find when she reached her mother in the kitchen, but she didn't want to wait to find out. Amy was known for her lack of skills in the culinary department, and Ella was starving. She would prefer a bowl of cereal than to be forced to sit through one of Amy's cooked offerings. "What's the matter?"

Ella let out an inward sigh of relief to see the kitchen still in one piece, with no smoke pouring from any of the appliances. Amy was already dressed, and rifling through a pile of letters. She looked up as Ella entered the room.

"Have you seen the time? What have you been doing up there?"

"Sleeping, it's what most people do on Saturday mornings," Ella replied hotly. Why was this day any different from most? She quickly ran through her mental calendar – no birthdays, appointments, visits…nothing she could remember, anyway. "Why are you up so early? I usually have to drag you out of bed."

"Not at twelve o'clock, you don't," Amy said, pointing at the clock that hung above the kitchen door.

Surprised, Ella stared at the hands of the clock, which were definitely pointed at twelve. "Mine must be broken," she said, heading towards the fridge. "It says six." Amy shrugged.

"We'll have to get some new batteries for it, then."

Ella nodded, then smirked. "It's like in my room, time's literally going backwards. Like a time machine." She snorted a laugh, and poured out a bowl of milk for cereal, her mind immediately on the warmed croissant at the café, which could have been the more delectable alternative to Cheerio's, had she not woken up so late. She did not notice her mother's face turn white, a remembrance and yearning cloud her eyes. She was not there to witness the clock in her room click back another hour.