A/N: I've had a reviewer say that they don't like when authors leave the translations at the end of a chapter. Therefore, this chapter will have the translations right after as an experiment. Let me know which you guys prefer. Also, this story has had a complete change in plot that occurred overnight, so I apologize for the delay in updates (as though I haven't had one of those before…eek!)
Chapter 8- The Plan
Once the destination was set for Londinium, everyone moved to the kitchen to make plans for how they were going to get the ship back and return River to her true consciousness as Hana. Inara was making tea when everyone bustled in. Kaylee, now in the loop and feeling a little better, got Inara clued in to everything that had been going on.
Mal went and got Jayne, who really didn't want to be in the same room as them aliens. When he was told in no uncertain terms that he would have to be there for the planning of the newest suicide mission, he made sure to sit as far away from those two as possible.
"The first thing that we have to do is find out where Hana's ship is on the planet." Drash said. He came in from the TARDIS. He got all the information he could get on Londinium and potential buildings Hana's ship could be stored in.
"Is there a way for us to figure that out before landing? We have to register and be cleared for landing on Londinium and there is no way the Alliance will let this ship land. They would shoot us before we got anywhere near planet side." Zoe said.
"Get us as close as we can to Londinium and I should be able to use the TARDIS to locate the ship." The Doctor replied.
"And once we do? Launching an assault on an Alliance building is plain suicide. We're going to get ourselves killed before we even see the front door." Jayne said.
"I might be able to create a distraction depending on what building it is." Inara said. "Seeing as I'm the most respectable person here."
"I can bypass a lot of the security with my psychic paper. That way we don't have to fight anyone. I just won't be able to bring you in to pilot the ship, Drash. You're a fugitive now."
"Psychic paper? You have a paper that can read my mind?" Jayne asked. He backed even farther from The Doctor, which was apparently possible.
"Well, it's one thing to have psychic paper. It's quite another to have a gun in a man's face. That's got more authority, I think." Mal stated. The Doctor frowned at him. Sensing an argument, Inara got up and moved away from the men and Zoe. Donna, Martha, and Kaylee followed. Zoe watched them and laughed inwardly. She got ready to intervene if needed.
"I would just prefer to not have any bloodshed if we can help it."
"Me neither, but I'm not going to have false hope that this ain't gonna get bloody."
"I suppose. But we should keep the bloodshed at a minimum."
"No more than necessary."
"Ok, I can live with that."
"You know, I would have expected a giant testosterone fight between the two of them, but they seem to be compromising just fine." Inara stated.
"Well, you wouldn't see one regardless. My species don't produce testosterone, so that chemical won't play in to any arguments." Drash said as he walked up to the spectators. Kaylee smiled at him and he smiled back.
"So, then this thing between you and him has nothing to do with testosterone?" Martha asked.
"Thing? There is not a 'thing' going on between us. We don't get along and honestly he's the last person that I want around me. We parted ways a long time ago."
"We may not have that 'Time Lord' brain you lot keep going on about, but I know when someone's arguing in circles, mate." Donna said. Drash narrowed his eyes at her with a look of…distaste? Anger? Donna couldn't really tell. Both her and Martha were having a hard time reading Drash.
"We haven't spoken in over 200 years. If I weren't dependant on him helping me save Hana, I would be more than happy to have kept the record going."
"But the rest of your species is dead. Shouldn't that change things? Doesn't that make you want to put water under the bridge?" Martha asked.
"I'm going to assume that putting water under some bridge is a human colloquialism for relationships somehow. But where do you come off, telling me how my relationship with him should be? Exactly how long have you known me? Exactly what do you know about relationships between my people? When was the last time your entire species died out? Oh, no wait. It hasn't. Don't stand there and make me the bad guy because my father is your friend."
"Is it because of your daughter?" Donna asked.
"Well, yes and no. Exactly how much do you know about my father? About his life on Gallifrey?"
"That's what I thought. Maybe we shouldn't be having this conversation. You don't know anything about what kind of father he was or what kind of person he is."
"Drash, maybe you should consider mending things. He's your father. You only get one. Right? You only have one father, zheng di (right)?" Kaylee asked. Drash smiled.
"Yes, I only have one father. I also had a mother. It's only by chance, I suppose. Our species didn't produce children naturally so sexes didn't matter where parents are concerned."
"What was your mother like?" Kaylee asked.
"She was a good mother. I had everything I needed as a child. We got along pretty well."
"Did your parents get on as well?" Martha asked. Drash laughed.
"Are you kidding? Why do you think he ran from our planet? The Council took him from the mate he chose for himself and forced him into another marriage with my mother because they thought she would be more suited for him."
"That's not why she was chosen for me." The Doctor said. He looked up at the group that suddenly looked incredibly guilty. Everyone was listening to Drash's story instead of making up a plan at this point anyway.
"Oh? Then, please enlighten us." Drash said sarcastically. Donna could definitely pick out sarcasm.
"She was chosen for me because of Hana. Hana is too powerful of a telepath. I would have a guess that she was one of the strongest telepaths that Gallifrey has ever seen. They figured if we were to have more children like her, that together we would all overthrow the rest of the Time Lords and rule the planet. So, they handed me over to your mother to settle me down and remind me of my place."
"What happened to your…" Donna started. A dark look from The Doctor stopped that sentence dead. She may have seen The Doctor look scary before, but she had never seen a look like that directed at her before. It was terrifying.
"I want to know what happened between the two of you." Martha interrupted. Drash and The Doctor glared at each other for a moment. They seemed to be arguing in their heads, before The Doctor gestured for Drash to speak.
"When I graduated from the Time Lord Academy, I wanted to be on the Council. It's the political government of Gallifrey. I was qualified, but I couldn't get a chair on the Council. When I was up for review after 50 consecutive years of being denied, I was told that my relationship with him was affecting my success."
"Why would The Doctor be bad for your success? He's your father. What did he do?"
"He was considered a renegade. He stole that TARDIS and was exiled. Then he kidnapped my daughter."
"I didn't kidnap her! She stowed aboard!" The Doctor exclaimed.
"She was a child! You should have brought her back."
"I was exiled. I couldn't go back!"
"Oi! How about you two calm down!" Donna yelled. The two were nose to nose. Jayne tried to come between them, but he wasn't strong enough.
"You ruined my life! Your name blacklisted our entire family! Why did you shame our family by breaking every rule that you learned?" Drash exclaimed.
"There was a human philosopher named Parker Palmer. He said that no punishment could be worse than the one we inflict on ourselves by living a divided life. I couldn't just sit there and be one of them. That's not who I am. That's not who I wanted to be. All they wanted was to sit back and watch the universe flow by instead of going out and embracing it. They couldn't be a part of it. They could only be outside of it. It's no way to live."
"And you couldn't stand to let anyone else in your family be accepted either! I kept getting denied because I had 'bad blood.' They figured that at least one of my regenerations would be like you. I cut ties with you and still they wanted nothing to do with me! Hana sided with you and look what it got her? She got kicked out of the Time Lord Academy and ended up a broken, insane human." Drash threw up his hands and walked out of the room. Kaylee followed after him. Everyone turned to look at The Doctor. He looked heartbroken for a moment before turning back to look at the map of Londinium. He got his glasses out for a closer look.
"If the Alliance has even a small clue on what the ship is, it's going to be in one of these five buildings. Each is a military building. The ship will be camouflaged so they may not even really know what it is. If Hana kept the door closed, they cannot get in."
~`~`~ Change of Scene ~`~`~
River had a blessed few minutes of sleep before waking up suddenly. She wasn't sure what had happened, but she felt better rested. She stretched before getting up. Slowly she made her way to the bridge. This was her area. She sat down at the helm and watched the stars pass by. The stars were always soothing. Sighing, she put her feet up on the helm (making sure not to push any buttons that would bring the crew to certain doom) and rubbed her locket. Then, she smiled and turned around to see Donna making her way up to her.
"Hello, Donna. Why aren't you with the others? What time is it?" Donna smiled in response and sat down near her. River felt her eyes move to the locket she was still caressing and proceeded to let go of it.
"What, and hear them making all the plans? No thanks. It's late. Don't you have a watch?"
"I don't like watches. There are too many rules of time for me to memorize, so I don't wear a watch. Everyone else wears a watch, so I can always ask." River replied with a dreamy tone.
"Is that a locket?" River swiveled in her chair to face Donna.
"Yes. It has a picture of Simon and me in it from before."
"Why were you rubbing it?" Donna asked. She had a suspicious tone in her voice that River didn't like.
"It's nothing. A nervous habit. A pattern of action that is acquired from a psychological trauma and is hard to break. When Simon saved me, he had it in his possession and I was so happy to have it and the other trinkets he managed to take." While Donna seemed to accept the answer, River didn't like the way she continued to stare at it.
"Can I see the picture?" She asked. River tensed up and wrapped her hand around the locket.
"No. It's mine. It's all I have that is only for me, and you can't have it. They took everything from me, but this is mine alone. You shouldn't be here. Gei wo yigeren. (Leave me alone)"
"Love, is it…broken?" Donna asked. She put her hand on River's leg. River grabbed the hand and shoved it away from her. She stood up and put her hands in the air.
"Why does it have to be broken for it to be mine? Everything is broken. My locket is not broken. It opens. Even if it didn't, it wouldn't have to open for me to know what it contains. Wo dapo liao.(I'm broken). I have fought so long for my mind. The voices cannot have it! How do you get unbroken, Donna? You did it. You loved that man, the man who was going to marry you. You barely knew him, but you loved him. When he betrayed you, you broke. What do you do?" She threw herself on her knees, tears falling down her face. She cried into her hands. Donna got up and cradled River, shushing her like she would a child. While it scared her to no end that this girl just read her mind, she felt it best to comfort her.
"I don't know how everyone gets unbroken, sweetheart. Some cry, some drink, some throw themselves into more trouble to ignore it all. As for me, I got angry. I spent a month in a gym beating a punching bag until I was able to cry. Then, I realized how dumb I was in turning The Doctor down. After that, I spent all my time trying to find him until I did."
"Can't get the voices to stop. They quiet down sometimes, but they never stop. Like your friend. He stops for nothing. Even when you stop, he will continue on." River stated. Donna gasped.
"What do you see?" River straightened up, anger flashing in her eyes.
"You can't just turn it on and stick me full of stuff and ask me what I see! I'm not an experiment! There is no hypothesis and no data…"
"Oi, calm down! I'm not pumping you full of anything! I just asked, is all. No need to go all Crazy Girl on me." River giggled at Donna's grumbling.
"You and The Doctor make a good match."
"We're not a couple."
"I never said that you were. So sad, the things that will come to pass…"
~`~`~`~ Change of scene ~`~`~`~
"So, how are we going to get your spaceship off Serenity in order for you to fly it to Londinum? For that matter, how are you going to get the Tardic to Londinium without the proper clearance?" Jayne asked.
"TARDIS. It's called the T-A-R-D-I-S. Honestly, I thought humans got smarter as time goes on." The Doctor sniffed, honestly offended. Martha stifled a laugh. It was fun to see his reaction to them mispronouncing the name.
"Are you saying that we are re-TARDIS?" Mal asked. The Doctor scowled while everyone else burst out laughing.
"Change of subject. We won't have to get the TARDIS off your ship. Stop it!" He said to Mal and Jayne, who started laughing when he said TARDIS. "To oversimplify how it works, my ship disappears here and reappears there. It's superior to whatever your Alliance has, so it shouldn't show up on any radar. It may get noticed if there are people around."
"How long will it take for your ship to 'reappear?' How fast does it go?" Zoe asked. She was still looking through some blueprints for a plan of attack.
"There is no delay. It travels in time as well." Zoe's head snapped up and a strange look took over her face.
"A time machine? You're telling me that not only do you have an alien spaceship, but that it is also a time machine?" Mal asked.
"Yes. I'm from Earth. The 21st century. I'm a military doctor from England. Hence my accent." Martha replied. She rifled through her pocket and pulled out her identification, showing it to Mal.
"You're from Earth-That-Was?" Jayne asked. "The Earth-That-Was?"
"It's just Earth in my day, but yes." Martha replied.
"So, all we have to do is land your ship wherever they crash landed before the feds took it away, right? Why worry about the Alliance at all?" Mal smiled at his brilliant plan. Well, until The Doctor frowned at him.
"We can't do that. We are part of events now."
"What's the point of a spaceship that travels through time if you can't travel through time?" Mal asked.
"It's hard to explain why I can't do that. I know what I can meddle with and what I cannot. It's just what I am."
"Just what you are? Sounds like a load of fel hua (bull shit) to me. You just don't want to reveal to us the 'magic' of time travel." Jayne replied.
"Some things can change. Some things cannot. That's all there is to it. We can't do it. End of story. We can, however, get back to this plan…" The Doctor went back to look at the schematics of a military building. Martha gently tapped his shoulder. He looked over at her.
"Now I'm worried about you. Seriously." Martha said.
"You just let an opportunity to talk about science slip through your fingers."
The Doctor just frowned again as Martha chuckled.
A/N: Again, let me know which way you prefer the translations. I can do it either way! :)