Title- Untempered
Characters/Pairings- Jenny, 10, no distinct pairings
Rating- K+ until further notice
Summary- Far out on the edge of the universe, something is wrong in Time, and the Doctor is nowhere to be found. The problem, and the fate of a small colony, is left in the hands of a girl with two hearts. But is she up to the challenge?

A/N- This probably won't be continued until I find the time to finish my other ongoing story. I just wanted to give you a taste of what I'm working on. Very short little prologue to get the ball rolling, so to speak. As with most of the prologues I write, it's in the present tense. Subsequent chapters will likely be past-tense, but for some reason I just like present-tense prologues.

Also, anyone who can guess what the last line is referencing gets infinite kudos points, because I don't think *I* would get it if I didn't know already. Let's just leave it that I'm drawing heavily on Tom Baker's era here.


Prologue

"It's in your head, keep moving on.
Become your dad.
Live unquestioned."
-Jimmy Eat World


It is seven terran years to the day- at least as far as she can tell- since she was born in a progenation chamber on Messaline. She's not one hundred percent sure about that, of course. Five of those years ago, she... acquired... a time agent's vortex manipulator. From what she can tell, it's only right that she have a way to travel through time. From what she can tell, that's her inheritance.

But as with everything... it's just from what she can tell.

She has no concrete evidence. No facts. All she really knows is what she's read in books, and there are precious few of those on the subject of Gallifrey. Most of what was written about the Time Lords- her people, by proxy- was written by Time Lords, and those books are remarkably difficult to come across. Only a handful exist in the universe anymore, and they are all in the ancient language of Gallifrey, impossible for her or anyone else to decipher, and only useful as relics, gathering dust in some collector's vault. She managed to get her hands on one for a few hours as payment of a favor owed her by the Duke of Cellibor, but it didn't do her much good.

What she knows, though, is that she has a right, more than anyone but her father, to travel freely through time. The vortex manipulator is rudimentary compared to the technology that was rumored to be built on Gallifrey, but she can only work with what she has.

She also knows that the Time Lords are gone. No one is really sure what happened; there are whispers, if you learn how to listen, of a great war. She can confirm that; she's a direct product of the only known survivor. But she doesn't know the details. No one does. All anyone knows is that one minute Gallifrey was there, prosperous as ever, and the next... nothing. Like it had just stepped outside of reality and never came back. This is her inheritance, then: a mysterious, powerful, and nearly extinct race that no one really knew much about but whom everyone respected (and maybe a little bit feared?), and a huge gaping hole in history that can't be explained.

It leaves a little to be desired, to say the least. She'd give anything to learn about the culture, the people, anything, everything. But there's only one person in the universe who could tell her that, and no matter how often she catches a rumor of him and races off in pursuit, she's always just days- or even mere hours- too late.

She came so close on the day the twenty-four planets vanished. She managed to track them as far as the Medusa Cascade, trying to find a way she could help, but there was nothing there. For about half a second, she could've sworn she picked up some kind of signal resonating through the vacuum of space. She even thought she might've caught a glimpse of something shining blue in the nebula-glow. It was all to faint to be sure, though, and it all vanished before she could verify anything.

The planets were all back home only hours later, and on every single one there was talk of a wonderful woman, the DoctorDonna, the fierce and burning savior whose echoes had seared across the Cascade throughout the stolen worlds as she saved them. She wondered. She theorized. She read transcripts of the Daleks' broadcasts across the stolen worlds. But all she could gather was that Donna Noble, the human woman she had met on Messaline, had for a moment become something so much more.

The universe sang of the DoctorDonna, and Jenny Without A Home listened. But she could never quite catch up with the man in the blue box or his legendary friend.

But back to today. It's her seventh birthday.

To celebrate, she's decided to pay a visit to one of the human colonies in A1689-zD1 (better known as the Erimus Galaxy, in human terminology). It's at the farthest edge of the universe known to man, a galaxy so very far away from human origin that it's only in the sixty-third century that human starships are able to reach the SBO-type cluster. As far as she's aware, only one planet has been colonized in the year she's aiming for: Arius-5. It's supposed to be gorgeous. No atmosphere, just the unending expanse of brilliant sky above, visible through the six feet of transparent quartz that make up the bio-domes, and the multi-layered, brilliantly colored silicate that makes up the planet's crust.

It sounds like exactly where she feels like being, today. And so she pilots her little ship- a tinkered up version of the shuttle she stole from Messaline, now with some very advanced warp-shunt technology (which really wasn't compatible with the original engines, but she made friends with a funny little android on Tara with some very advanced engineering skills and he gave her a hand with the ins and outs of blending the two technologies)- to the proper coordinates, then hooks the vortex manipulator into the main drive and prepares to make the time-jump. Three thousand years is guaranteed to be rough. She braces herself and punches the accelerator

And out in the blackness, in the gap between the vortex and the void, someone is laughing...