Not too bad for a follow-up update. Certainly better than the last gap between updates. I actually wrote the vast majority of this in one sitting, other than around 500 words. As I'm certain I've said before though, it's late now, I've been writing for too long, I'm sick of this chapter and I want to upload, so I can't be all that bothered to proof read :) The computer spelling and grammar check will have to do!
Day of the Moon: Part Three
The four of them sat in the warehouse, doing their own thing. Alex sat, cross-legged on one of the crates, half-watching the on-going space-launch programme, half-staring into space. The Doctor and River continued to tinker around in the Astronaut suit. Rory stood in the corner, motionless, with Amy's whimpers filling their ears.
Alex glanced down towards the sound of the beeping noise. River's communicator was signalling that it had received a message.
"Message from Canton," Alex called, chucking the machine towards the Doctor, who caught it and opened the message.
"You should kill us all on sight!" said a horrendous, monstrous voice.
"The bloody hell was that?" Alex asked in shock.
"A plan," the Doctor grinned.
"Doctor," River called before Alex could respond to him. "A unit like this… would it ever be able to move without an occupant?"
"Why?" he asked, leaning over the suit and looking inside.
"Well the little girl said the Spaceman was coming to eat her. Maybe that's exactly what happened…"
"I love you," said a voice. The three of them realised that it was coming from Amy's nano-recorder. "I know you think it ought to be him. But it's not. It's you. And when I see you again, I'm gonna tell you properly. Just to see your stupid face… My life was so boring before you just… dropped out of the sky… Just get your stupid face where I can see it, okay?"
The Doctor wandered over awkwardly and took a seat on the dirt-covered floor next to Rory, who looked distraught. "She'll be safe for now," the Doctor assured him. "No point in a dead hostage,"
Alex rolled his eyes at the Doctor's attempt to be comforting. River smiled at him sadly and continued working on the suit. Alex slowly made his way a little closer to where the two men were talking, to better hear what they were saying. It may have been a private conversation, Alex thought, but it's not like he could help River with the suit. Besides, the television programme had finished.
"…and then what do I do?" the Doctor was asking. "This isn't an alien invasion; they live here! This is their empire. This is kicking the Romans out of Rome."
"Rome fell," Rory reminded the Doctor determinedly.
"I know… I was there…"
"So was I."
The Doctor smirked at Rory. "Personal question…?"
"Seriously? You?" Rory asked sarcastically.
He nodded slowly. "Do you ever remember it? Two thousand years, waiting for Amy? The Last Centurion?"
Alex waited for the response with baited breath. Rory seemed to be taking his own good time in responding.
"Are you lying?"
"Of course I'm lying," he admitted.
"Of course you are. Not the sort of thing anyone forgets…"
"But I don't remember it all the time. It's like there's a door in my head. I can keep it shut…"
The Doctor, evidently satisfied, got to his feet and turned his head to Alex surreptitiously, apparently having known about his presence all along. He raised an eyebrow as if to say 'Wow!'. He then clapped his hands together and seized River's communicator from a crate. He typed a few buttons on it and disappeared into the TARDIS. He re-emerged a few minutes later with an odd, black device in his hands, around the size of an average brick.
"Right then, you three, in you get. Let's go and kick the Romans out of Rome!"
Surprised at the Doctor's sudden change of attitude, the three of them abandoned what they were doing and piled into the TARDIS.
"Rory, put the nano-recorder into the pod below the helmic regulator," the Doctor ordered. Rory stared at the console blankly. River smirked and pointed it out to him. "Now, let's track that signal," he grinned, typing on the typewriter and selecting options on the scanner. After a few seconds, he clapped again. "Gotcha! Found her. Now, just got to make one quick pit-stop, then we'll be off,"
He landed the TARDIS and ran towards the door, holding the brick object. He opened it and met Canton on the other side. He handed him the object and had a quick, murmured conversation with him. They shook hands, and the Doctor closed the door again. He set the TARDIS back into motion once again. This time, since they were tracing a signal, the ride was considerably less smooth than the previous one, especially as the TARDIS had to break through the defences of the Silent ship. Eventually however, they succeeded.
"Amy's out there?" Rory asked nervously once the TARDIS had landed.
"Let's go and find out," the Doctor grinned. He led the way towards the door and flung them open. "Oh!" he said in surprise as he stepped outside. "Interesting. Very Aickman Road, seen one of these before..."
River followed the Doctor out, gun in hand. Alex in turn followed her. He found himself in an unusual ship. It was similar to a TARDIS, with a sort of central console in a circular room. Memories came flooding back as Alex noticed who and what was piloting the ship.
"Abandoned. Wonder how that happened... Ah well, suppose I'm about to find out," he shrugged and turned to face Alex, River and Rory. "You three, keep one Silent in eye-shot at all times. Oh! Hello!" the Doctor turned back to the Silents. "Were you in the middle of something? Just had to say though, have you seen what's on the telly? Oh, hello Amy!" Alex noticed Amy behind the console, strapped to a chair. The Doctor was carrying the small television, which he placed on top of the console. "You alright? Wanna watch some television? Ah! Stay where you are," he muttered as the Silent Alex was looking at began to make its way towards the Doctor. "Because look at me. I'm confident. You wanna watch that. Me when I'm confident. Oh, and this is my friend River," he noticed River aiming her gun at each Silent in turn, slowly making her way around the room. "Nice hair, clever, has own gun. And unlike me, she really doesn't mind shooting people. I shouldn't like that. Kinda do a bit."
"Thank you sweetie," River smiled, standing back-to-back with the Doctor.
"I know you're team-players and everything, but she'll definitely kill the first three of you!"
"Oh, the first seven, easily,"
"Oh, eight for you honey,"
"Oh stop it!"
"Yeah well, maybe I will,"
"Is this really important flirting?" Amy interrupted, still strapped to the chair and flanked by two Silents. "Because I feel like I should be higher on the list right now,"
"Come on," Alex muttered to Rory. They made their way towards Amy, eyes shifting from one Silent to another. Not one Silent tried to stop them. They simply stood there, staring, not making a sound.
"As I was saying," the Doctor said, diverting attention away from Alex and Rory regardless. "My naughty friend here is going to kill the first three of you to attack, plus him behind. So maybe you wanna draw lots, or have a quiz,"
"What's he got?" Amy asked Alex and Rory as they arrived at her and scrabbled at the strange red thread binding her arms and legs to the chair.
"Something, I hope," Rory murmured.
"'Course he has, he always has," Alex assured them both. Amy smiled weakly.
"...All I really want to do," the Doctor announced, walking the perimeter of the room, "is accept your total surrender, and then I'll let you go in peace," he said with a flourish of the arms. "Yes, you've been interfering in human history for thousands of years! Yes, people have suffered and died, but what's the point in two hearts if you can't be a bit forgiving now and then?" The Silent he was talking to bore down on him, the height difference between it and the Doctor strikingly obvious. "Ooh. The Silence. You guys take that seriously, don't you? Okay, you got me, I'm lying, I'm not really gonna let you go that easily. Nice thought, but it's not Christmas,"
"What is this stuff?" Alex grunted as he yanked Amy's bindings to no avail.
"We need the Sonic,"
"First! You tell me about the girl. Who is she? Why's she important? What's she for?"
The television fired up. A black and white, grainy image appeared on it, distracting Alex, Rory and Amy for a moment. As Alex's eyes accustomed to the old technology, and he remembered the year, he realised that it was footage of the moon landing of 1969.
"Aren't you proud?" the Doctor asked the Silents, pulling up the antennae of the television, improving the picture quality. "Because you helped! Now. D'you know how many people are watching this, live on the telly?" he patted the television, smiling. "Half a billion! And that's nothing, because the Human Race will spread out among the stars and you just watch them fly. Billions and billions of them, for billions and billions of years. And every single one of them, at some point in their lives, will look back at this man," he pointed to the screen, which showed a grainy, terrible image of Neil Armstrong descending the ladder of the lunar pod, "taking that very first step and they will never, ever, forget it."
"Okay, I'm about to step off the ladder now," said Armstrong's patchy, interference-stricken voice.
"Oh, but they'll forget this bit," the Doctor said suddenly. He took out his radio and placed it to his mouth. "Ready?"
"Here we go," Armstrong said. Alex turned his eyes back to the screen, stomach aflutter in anticipation of he didn't know what. "That's one small step for man!"
A black-and-white image of a Silent flashed up on the screen. "You should kill us all on sight!"
"You've given the order for your own execution," the Doctor told them.
"You should kill us all on sight!"
"And the whole planet just heard you."
"You should kill us all on sight!"
"One giant leap for mankind!" Armstrong finished, reappearing on the screen.
"And one whacking great kick up the backside for the Silence!" the Doctor shouted in triumph. "You just raised an army against yourself! And now, for a thousand generations, you're going to be ordering them to destroy you every day. How fast can you run?"
The Silent that the Doctor was talking to began to approach him slowly, menacingly, venomously.
"Because today's the day the Human Race throw you off their planet," the Doctor went on undeterred. "They won't even know they're doing it! I think, quite possibly, the word you're looking for right now is 'oops!' Run!" The Silents began to growl and snarl, slowly raising their long fingers. "Guys, I mean us! Run!"
The Silents attacked. They seemed to draw electrical energy from the very air around them and directed it into bolts of electricity, which they fired at the group. River drew a gun and began to fire mercilessly at the creatures, far exceeding her target of three, and quickly approaching her promise of eight.
Alex, Rory and Amy continued to fight Amy's bindings, having to both attempt to break them and avoid the Silents' attacks at the same time. Fortunately, they seemed to be concentrating their efforts on River and the Doctor, and seemed to have forgotten about their prisoner.
"They won't budge!" Rory cried in frustration, yanking at the odd rope as hard as he could. He shouted out in anger. A Silent nearby noticed the three of them and looked directly at Rory, slowly making its way towards the three of them.
Alex acted almost on instinct. He had seen River holster a second pistol to her boot back in the TARDIS. He spun on the spot, reached down, and pulled it out of River's shoe-holster, who was standing conveniently close. Alex turned back around and opened fire on the approaching Silent, stopping it, quite literally, dead in its tracks
"When did you learn to fire a gun like that?" River shouted, impressed, as she took out two more of the creatures.
"You don't spend time with Jack Harkness without picking up a thing or two," Alex grinned, taking out another Silent of his own.
"Sounds like my kind of guy," River called back.
"What are you doing?" Suddenly, the Doctor was by Alex's side, visibly shocked and surprised. He yanked the gun out of Alex's hands.
"Oi! I was helping!"
"I'm not having you be any more of a murderer than you already are. Get them back to the TARDIS!" He pushed Alex towards Amy, who was finally out of the chair, and Rory, who was supporting her. "Don't let them build to full power!" he called to River as they left.
"I know! There's a reason why I'm shooting, honey!"
Staying low to the ground, the three of them fought their way towards the sanctuary of the TARDIS and dove inside. Alex quickly ran to the monitor and turned it on, giving the three of them a view of what was taking place outside. The Doctor appeared to be disabling any electronic equipment on the ship, limiting the electrical energy the Silents were able to draw. River was then taking advantage of their weakened state, mercilessly firing upon each and every one. As they watched in awe, the doors to the TARDIS opened once more, with the Doctor fighting his way inside. He joined them at the monitor and watched as River skilfully, ruthlessly and near-singlehandedly destroyed every single creature in the ship, until she was alone. Sparks and steam fell from the ceiling, half-concealing the many dead Silent bodies.
"So we're safe again!" Nixon chuckled, heartily shaking the Doctor's hand. The Doctor had landed in the Oval Office back in Washington once more. The President had greeted them warmly and called in Canton for what they called the 'debrief'. Grudgingly, the Doctor had 'debriefed' the two of them, informing them of the on-going situation.
"Safe?" the Doctor asked incredulously. "No! Of course you're not safe; there's about a billion other things out there just waiting to burn your whole world. But, if you want to pretend you're safe, just so you can sleep at night, okay, you're safe. But you're not really."
Nixon was speechless. His face had become less and less comfortable over the past few seconds, and now looked as though his brain was near melting. Fortunately for him, the Doctor turned to Canton, giving Nixon an excuse not to reply.
"Canton. 'Till the next one, eh?"
"Looking forward to it," Canton replied.
"Canton just wants to get married," the Doctor reminded Nixon, turning back to him. "Hell of a reason to kick him out of the FBI."
"Well I'm sure something can be arranged," Nixon smiled.
"I'm counting on you." The Doctor turned to leave, but was stopped by Nixon.
"Uhh, Doctor. Canton here tells me you're, uh… you're from the future. Hardly seems possible, but… I was wondering-"
"Should warn you," the Doctor interrupted. "I don't answer a lot of questions."
"But I'm a President at the beginning of his time! Dare I ask? Will I be remembered?"
The Doctor chuckled. "Oh Dicky. Tricky Dicky. They're never going to forget you," he assured Nixon. He then turned on his feel and marched back towards the TARDIS. The others followed suit. "Say hi to David Frost for me," the Doctor added as he closed the doors.
"I'll miss Canton, y'know," Alex mused as he leaned back in one of the TARDIS chairs. "He was a good guy. I mean, you meet a lot of FBI and CIA and MI6 guys, and they're cocky, know-it-all, Mr-I'm-Amazing. But Canton wasn't. He's a good man."
"Yeah," Rory agreed. "I meet a lot of FBI and CIA and MI6 guys."
"You know what I mean," Alex rolled his eyes. He picked himself up from the chair and headed towards the door to see what was taking the Doctor so long. They had landed back in Stormcage to drop River off. He pulled open the door and stuck his head out. His eyes widened and he withdrew it again. "Check this out," he called to Amy and Rory, sprinting towards the monitor and switching it on once again.
The screen showed a dank corridor, devoid of all colour, and thunder, lightning and heavy rain pounding at the window of the cell. The really interesting things however, were the Doctor and River; they were kissing. Passionately. Alex and Amy began to giggle like schoolchildren. Alex had seen the Doctor act mildly romantically in his time, but that had been almost exclusively in his previous body, and even then not this passionately. The two of them broke apart. After a short conversation, the Doctor practically ran back to the TARDIS and slammed the doors behind him. Alex hurriedly switched off the monitor and threw himself back into the chair. Amy and Rory delved deep into an imaginary conversation.
"You alright?" Alex asked as the Doctor climbed the steps to the console, looking slightly uneven on his feet.
The Doctor nodded. He readied the TARDIS for take-off again, switching on the scanner as he did so. He took note of where was on the screen, and his eyes visibly widened. Alex heard a stifled snort of laughter from Amy's vicinity.
"Rory, I'm going to need thermo-couplings. The green ones and the blue ones," the Doctor told Rory, returning to the console room.
"Okay," Rory nodded as he left to look for the couplings. "Hold on."
"Oh… red ones as well…" the Doctor muttered. "Alex, could you-?"
"On it," Alex replied, already out of the room. He soon caught up to Rory, who was standing bolt up-right, nowhere near where the thermo-couplings were stored. Amy's voice filled the echoing corridor, despite Alex having seen her in the console room just seconds before. He realised Rory was listening to Amy and the Doctor's conversation through the nano-recorder. He couldn't exactly reprimand Rory for eavesdropping. Alex himself had done the same thing a short time previously.
"Because I was! I mean I, I thought I was. Turns out, I wasn't!"
"No, why did you tell us?" the Doctor's voice then asked.
"Because you're my friends. You're my best friends. I've known you both since I was seven years old."
"Did you tell Rory?"
A pause. Then: "No."
"Amy, why tell us and not Rory?"
"Why d'you think? I travelled with you in this TARDIS for so long… All that time. If I was pregnant for some of it, wouldn't it have had an effect? I don't want to tell Rory his baby might have three heads, or like a Time Head, or something…"
The Doctor chuckled. "What's a Time Head?"
"I don't know, but what if it had one?"
"A Time Head?" the Doctor laughed.
"Shut up all right?" Amy laughed too. "Oi, Stupid Face!"
Rory stiffened up. He turned around to see Alex watching him from behind, smirking. "Uh, yeah?" he asked, making his way back from the corridor, past Alex to the console room. "Hello!" he said shakily to Amy and the Doctor. The Doctor waved cheerily.
"Taking that away from you if you're gonna listen in all the time!" Amy warned him.
"Okay. Okay, that's a fair point. But you should've told me that you thought you were pregnant!" No-one replied. "I'm a nurse, I'm good with pregnancy!" he continued.
"Not, as it turns out, that good," Amy said cheekily. "So would you stop being stupid?" she asked, wrapping her arms around his neck.
"Uhh, no. I'm never, ever going to stop being stupid!" Rory cried, picking Amy up playfully and making her shriek.
"So, this little girl, it's all about her, who was she?" the Doctor asked, pulling the screen around to his side of the console as Alex retook his seat. He pressed a few controls. "Or, we could just go off and have some adventures. Anyone in the mood for that, adventures? 'Cos I am! You only live once! Whose turn to pick where we go? Who has a coin to flip?"