Title- What's In A Name?
Characters/Pairings- 11, III.5
Summary- "Call me Fred. Well, my name's Winifred, but that's way too long and I hate it." May of 1940, Paris. The Germans are invading, and the Doctor makes a new/old friend. Short little oneshot.
She ran into him- literally- in the midst of the Nazi invasion of Paris. As she apologized for knocking him over, something about her struck him as... odd. He was sure he'd never seen her before in his life, with her black, pin-curled hair and bright hazel eyes, but she smiled at him with scarlet-painted lips and babbled apologies and he could have sworn he knew her.
Her accent was strange, as well. It sounded a little too much like... but that was impossible.
"You're not French," he said bluntly. "What's that accent?"
"Welsh. I was traveling when the war broke out, and I haven't been able to get back home."
He nodded. Her accent did sound sort of Welsh-ish... with a little something else. But he didn't have time to worry about that. The sound of marching German feet was growing closer, and there was fear in her face. So he did what any self-respecting time traveler would do. He grabbed her by the hand and ran like hell.
They wound up panting in an alley as the Nazi war machine paraded past, smiling, at the city's unconditional surrender. "What's your name?" he asked.
"Call me Fred," she suggested, then grimaced. "Well, my name's Winifred, but that's way too long and I hate it. So I go by Fred."
"Right, Fred, I'm the Doctor. Now, there's something very, very bad going on behind the scenes here, and since my TARDIS is currently in the possession of the German army, I'm trapped until I can find out what and get it back." He didn't notice the spark of confused recognition in her eyes when he said 'TARDIS,' and even if he had, he wouldn't have dwelled on it. "You can stay here, or you can come with me. Up to you."
She shrugged. "I suppose I'd better come with you, then," she said. "You seem very well-informed and very mad."
He grinned and straightened his bow tie.
"Come on then, Fred, let's go!"
She hung from a strut on the upper levels Eiffel Tower, throwing snarky and insulting comments his way at the top of her lungs as he tried to reach a hand down to grab hers. He supposed she had a right to be a bit miffed- after all, it was sort of partially his fault that she was in this predicament- but did she really have to be so vocal about it?
Fred dropped one hand from the piece of metal she was clutching, and for a moment, he honestly thought she was going to fall. But to his surprise, she swung her body to build momentum, then used the swing to give her just enough lift to reach his grasping hand with her free one. He gave a good haul, and she slid upwards a few inches, feet kicking at the air.
And then, from the inside pocket of her blue jacket, fell an ornate silver watch on a chain.
Time all but stood still for the Doctor. If Fred hadn't been holding on so tightly, he probably would have lost his grip, staring. Written in high Gallifreyan on the back of the watch was a name. A familiar name, one with far more syllables than the much-detested Winifred...
"Come on, then, pull me up!"
The spell was broken, and he heaved her up onto the safety of the platform. They both slumped back, out of breath. Their eyes caught, hazel and green, and almost simultaneously, they started laughing. They laughed until their sides hurt and their previous state of breathlessness seemed insignificant.
Then the Doctor stood up. "Well, Fred, what do you say to another adventure?"
"Depends," she said. "Is it always this mad?"
"Well..." he flashed her a cheeky grin. "Not always."
Fred smiled back. "Alright then," she agreed quickly.
"Excellent. Now, tell me, have you ever heard of a planet called Ribos?"
At the sparkle of something half-remembered in her compelling eyes, he knew he was right.