"Honestly, we're fine sleeping here." Tish protested as her sister tried to figure out arrangements, "Really, bunk beds are fantastic after the last few months." She continued eyeing the door to the JIC room enviously.
"Where have you been sleeping?" Martha asked, not having thought of it before.
"A horrible mattress or the wardrobe room. Didn't you notice the nests?" she said absently daydreaming about an actual bed.
"I'm not entering that war zone while two tech geeks are prancing about, giddy about fixing things." Martha said, looking towards the TARDIS with distrust, "I swear I saw Sarah Jane giggling about wielding equipment. How do you stand it?" she tapped her sister on the shoulder sympathetically.
"He put a hole in our apartment...flat's," Tish corrected herself, "roof with a stove. We're still not sure how it worked." She smiled at the memory now, remembering how she had yelled.
"What? Seriously?" she giggled.
"Mhmm. He said he was trying to make me a birthday cake, but Amy said he was playing with fireworks." Tish laughed.
"That's...Why am I not surprised?" Martha asked.
"You travelled with him too." Tish laughed, "You want horror stories though? Ask Sarah Jane or try that boss of yours." Tish shook her head, "I heard no less than five stories involving the Brigadier, Sarah Jane or Dr. Sullivan while I was with him this time. Amy's bedtime stories are more often than not about former companions. I've heard some tales about you too, Miss 'I don't know happy primes'." She teased.
"Shut up," Martha rolled her eyes, "Anyway, I've got a spare room but...it's not exactly liveable unless you want to sleep on a couch." Martha offered.
"Oh my God, you've done it. You turned your spare room into a games room, didn't you?" Tish laughed and Martha shrugged. "Does mum know?"
"No. And if she finds out I'll tell her it's all my husband's fault we've got a room full of game stations, dozens of games and posters of alien things or video game characters." Martha smiled.
"Why do you blame everything on your husband?" Tish laughed.
"That's the fun bit of getting married!" Gwen said, coming up the stairs and into the main hub, "What are we talking about?" she said smiling at them.
"Where Tish and Rory are going to stay." Martha said.
"Oh, with us of course. Unlike some people, our guest room really is a guest room." Gwen teased. "Beyond that, Rhys has been trying to find ways to spend more time with his brother." She admitted.
Tish tried not to laugh, "He's plotting ways to bond with his baby brother?" she said smiling.
"Yes." Gwen nodded, "sometimes I think he's got the pregnancy brain, not me. I'm sure if I tell him Rory's staying at our home he'd be plotting movies, board games and junk food. There might even be footie pyjamas." She said failing to hide the laugh bubbling up inside her.
"Right, so Tish and Rory get to go home with you and Rhys, Sarah Jane and Luke always stay at Jack's flat, that just leaves the Doctor to figure out." Martha listed.
"Oh, good luck getting him to go anywhere." Tish scoffed, "He's not ever leaving that girl's side. I once heard him say, 'If I can't hear your heart beat, you're too far away'. Now, I'm not sure if he meant that literally or if he meant if she's out of the receiver's reach, which is quite a ways, but still." Tish smiled.
"Okay. I'm sure if he needs sleep he'll either sleep on one of the bunks or I'll set him up on one of the other beds." Martha agreed. "It can't be that hard. I'll probably stay overnight again, but send Mickey and Amidala home." She said looking over to where Mickey and Amidala were sitting, Amidala sleeping at Mickey's feet.
"Sure...That'll happen." Gwen said sarcastically.
"What? I can send him home." Martha insisted
"He can't sleep without you and you can't sleep without him." Tish teased her sister, "I doubt he'll go anywhere." She smirked.
Three days later
"We're not trying to buy out the whole store, Luke." Tish giggled as he added two more DVD's to their cart. "Just entertain her till she's well enough to move around more." She said looking at the large pile of dvd's Luke had put in the cart.
"I know, but it gets boring when you're stuck still." Luke whined.
"Oh, I know, trust me." Tish looked over some of the titles Luke had picked and had to laugh again to herself. All he'd chosen were fantasy stories or Disney Princess movies. She'd have to remember to keep the Doctor from watching 'Peter Pan' or 'Alice in Wonderland', both versions of the movie that Luke had added to the cart'. "We've got ten...You can choose two more, that's it." Tish warned him, smiling at his sulky look. "Then you can look at computer games." She smiled.
Luke smiled brightly at that, "Really?" he said happily bouncing.
"Yes. I need your help setting up something." Tish said her smile growing as she thought of the surprise.
"What?" Luke asked excitedly.
"I missed Rory's birthday, when we were separated, and if people keep referring to him as my toy boy I might have to use the term to his benefit." She said smiling.
"What's that mean?" Luke questioned both the term and her statement.
"It means I'm about to spend copious amounts of money on him for my own entertainment." Tish told him. "That man can't let anyone help him and he's been working without a laptop for his schooling." She explained honestly.
"How's he manage that?" Luke asked confused.
"He handwrites essays and types them up at the library to print." She said shrugging.
"Ew." Luke made a face, "That sucks." He said frowning
"I know, right?" Tish laughed, "So I'm going to get him a laptop, that way he's not stuck in the dark ages." She continued smiling at him.
"What about you and Amy?" Luke asked.
"What do you mean?" Tish asked
"Don't you have one?" Luke asked.
"Yes, but it mostly stays at my flat." She said honestly.
"Why not take it with you? Then you can email and skype us on Earth." Luke told her, "Send photos in ways other than your phone." he enticed.
"Is this your way of making sure you can talk to Amy all the time?" Tish asked knowingly.
"Maybe." Luke admitted, not looking the least bit embarrassed he'd been caught out.
"I don't think she needs one quite like Rory's..." Tish paused, thinking over what she still had in her savings and realizing this wouldn't really scratch it overall, "Why not?" she shrugged
Luke grinned, "Think we can get her some of my games?" he asked.
"You're a horrible influence, Luke Smith, and I'm beginning to see why they accuse the Doctor of being your father." Tish said laughing.
He looked at her curiously, "Is that supposed to be an insult?" he asked, genuinely unsure.
"Maybe." Tish smiled sweetly.
"Oh, please, I wasn't that bad!" the Doctor complained, swinging his little swing back and forth, kicking with his shoes to move it.
"You were horrible." Sarah Jane shook her head and ducked out from under the console, "Really. Poor Harry's been traumatized ever since he travelled with us." She said shaking her head.
"That might be purely due to your fashion choices or the trauma of our wedding...which you caused!"
He watched curiously as she leaned out and with one very greasy hand drew on the glass floor in the fluid. After a moment he recognized the circular pattern forming as Gallifreyan and snorted when he could read the finished phrase, "Very mature, Sarah." He said shaking his head.
"I stand by the written statement." Sarah Jane replied, going back to her work.
"I still can't believe you've got everyone around here convinced you're completely sweet, innocent and would never curse." the Doctor toyed with a spanner before turning back to his set of wires. "It's like they don't know you at all." He said in amazement.
Sarah Jane didn't speak in reply, only leaned out and tapped the glass again where she'd written.
After a few minutes of silence bar working noises there was a clicking noise and a woosh.
"Did we do it?" the Doctor yelped, jerking backwards from the now whirling gears inside and the wires that had righted themselves.
"We have power!" Sarah Jane laughed, moving out from under the console and standing up, "Welcome back, girl." She said gently touching the console.
The Doctor grinned brightly, sliding out of his swing and taking the stairs two at a time. "We've got her back!" he said excitedly, "Hello, Sexy! Welcome Back!"
Amy twitched on the bed, trying to rearrange and get comfortable. She was getting really bored. She was well enough to sit up for long periods of time and she wasn't sleeping nearly enough, but Martha told her she couldn't leave the bed other than to use the loo until she was no longer coughing. She got more stuff injected through her IV every few hours and she had to keep the weird oxygen tubes up her nose, despite how aggravating they could be.
Mostly everyone had been in to visit or sit in with her, except for Jack's other friend Gwen and Rory's brother. Gwen wasn't allowed in because Amy could make her sick and she was pregnant and Rhys worked most the day and Martha kept him out for some reason.
It might be neat to see Rhys again, just to see how he'd grown up. Amy's memories of him involved a teenager with weird hair that stuck up, baggy trousers and a football jersey that Henry had mocked.
With a sigh she shifted on the bed again.
Martha looked up from her laptop and Amy blushed, "Getting restless?" she asked smiling softly at the little girl.
"Yes." Amy said.
"I know the feeling." Martha told her, "When I was a bit younger than you my brother pushed me off of a swing, I fell and broke my arm. They called an ambulance and everything. Well, I got to the hospital, they put a plaster cast on but about the time they did that I started having issues breathing and started turning red." Martha hit a button on her laptop and Amy watched the screen change to a photo with a writing box underneath it. She walked over and sat on the edge of Amy's bed to talk eye to eye. "I had a really bad allergic reaction to the morphine they'd given me for pain. I couldn't breathe or anything for a bit. I got stuck in the ICU for a week as they watched me to make sure I was fine." Martha shook her head, "It sucked but Leo felt horrible. He wasn't a brat for a whole two weeks!" she said laughing now at the memory.
Amy laughed, "Is that why you became a Doctor?" she asked
"Yup. It was fascinating to watch them do their jobs. I'm specialized in emergency medicine, but I don't get much call to use it anymore." She said honestly.
"You got to fix Rory," Amy said proudly, "You brought him to life again and you saved me!" she said smiling up at Martha.
"I guess I did." She smiled back.
"Twice." Amy turned her arm over and pointed to the scars on the underside, "Plus you helped break us out of a dream, right?" she asked her smile growing.
"Yes," Martha nodded, "But I don't think that qualifies under 'medicine'," Martha laughed.
"I know... Dad said you got stuck in the past before." Amy said, "When we were?" she said looking up.
"Oh, I got stuck twice. Once we ended up staying at his first ever companion's house for a few months in 1969 and another time I ended up working as a maid in 1913." She joked.
"We were in 1913," Amy told Martha seriously, "Tish didn't work though, Dad didn't let her. He fixed things, Mum...got fired. But I worked! I was a tutor..."Amy froze and frowned, saddened by the thought, "Martha?" she asked quietly.
"Yes?" Martha responded at the girl's questioning tone.
"You...Do you know how to find someone from long ago?" Amy asked timidly.
"Yes." Martha nodded, "Is there someone you want me to look up?"
"Yes." Amy fiddled absently with the edge of her blanket, "Could you help me find my friend? He was in 1913 but..." she trailed off looking at the floor.
"I'll see what I can do." Martha promised.
"Hey, Mickey?" Martha left the med wing and located her husband working at his computer. "Can you do me a favour?" Martha asked in a tone that made it not a request.
"Whatcha need, love?" Mickey asked, spinning his chair to face her.
She tried not to laugh at the game of space invaders he had paused. "I need you to locate someone for me. Friend of Amy's." Martha said.
"You want me to stalk a nine year old?" Mickey asked in confusion.
Martha did laugh that time, "No. Well, he was seven but given he was born in 1906 I doubt he's still that old." She said.
"Oh...Right, past, future...Yeah, I'll give it a go. What've you got." Mickey said turning back to the computer.
"Robert Henry O'Connor, born 1906, sometime in November." Martha listed, "Parents named Thomas and Eileen. Immigrated to the United States from Ireland sometime before 1906, lived in Pennsylvania."
"Isn't that where they chucked all the tea into the harbour?" Mickey frowned in thought as he typed up the information into his search program, minimizing his paused game for now. Typing was so much easier than handwriting for him, and he was normally faster at it than any of them.
"No, that would be Boston." Martha tried not to laugh again, "Thus 'the Boston Tea Party'."
Mickey looked a little embarrassed, "Okay, I might have mixed those up. Anything else you know?"
"They ran a shop." Martha shrugged. "She's almost nine, what do you expect?" she asked looking at him.
"She knew his full name." Mickey countered, telling the search to run and sitting back in his seat.
"She's almost nine," Martha repeated, "Full names are yelled occasionally by upset parents."
"Ooh, point." Mickey grinned suddenly and checked his watch, "So...How long till you told her you'd be back." Mickey asked, tapping his fingers on his forearm and watching her with a smirk.
"Not nearly long enough for that. Keep dreaming, dear." Martha replied, walking away from her husband and back to her 'office'.
"Damn." Mickey replied, eyes fixed on her as she left.
"Martha! Need your help." the Doctor entered the med wing, something small in one arm and his other hand pulling Sarah Jane behind him by her wrist.
"What's up?" Martha asked looking at them.
"Nothing!" Sarah Jane protested.
The Doctor held up Sarah Jane's hand hat he held and indicated her upper arm where red was slowly staining the shirt under a small rip. "She's hurt herself." He tattled.
"Youch." Martha motioned for Sarah Jane to sit down on her exam table.
"I'm fine." Sarah Jane protested as the Doctor left her side and moved to Amy.
"Hey, we got power back mostly." the Doctor told her with a smile, sitting down on the chair next to the bed carefully, trying to keep from smearing grease or anything else anywhere in Martha's sterile environment.
"The TARDIS is okay?" Amy asked eagerly, "She's fine?" she asked excitedly.
"She'll be fine." the Doctor acknowledged, "She's healing like you are...but, I did manage to unlock a few rooms." He said smiling.
"What ones?" Amy sat up a little more on her bed to listen.
"Well, the kitchen which means I now have my sonic back and..." he moved his arm and held up a very familiar toy, "Your room." He said waving the toy in front of her.
"My bear!" Amy exclaimed, reaching for the five eyed bright orange teddy she'd gotten long ago. "You found him!" she said grabbing the bear from him.
"He was still tucked in bed." the Doctor assured her as she hugged it close. "I'm almost certain Dygan is in the Library where we made our blanket fort, I'll try and find him next." He promised.
"Thank you, dad." Amy reached out and pulled him into a hug, ignoring the mess of his shirt.
"You're welcome, Pond." He smiled, holding her tight and relishing the fact she was getting well again. He pulled back after a moment and looked over when Martha made an impressed noise. "What's the diagnosis, Doc?" he asked cheekily, getting up and walking over to see Sarah Jane's arm.
"I can fix it myself." Sarah Jane protested again even as Martha pulled off her gloves and gathered materials. It was a small cut, only about two inches long and not quite deep enough to need stitches, but just deep enough Martha would feel better making sure it stayed together with a 'butterfly'.
"Yourself? Wait, how would you normally fix this?" Martha asked, setting down her things and getting a new pair of gloves. She still remembered vividly Mickey's attempt at fixing himself with super glue.
"Dermal glue, ace bandage and whatever I have in my kit that would speed along healing...Wine." Sarah Jane added as an afterthought.
Martha just stared at her, "How long have you been doing your own medical treatments?" she asked evenly trying to keep her temper.
"Since the 70's. It's that or go to Harry – I'm not allowed to go to normal hospitals due to the scare I give them with my records and with the excess of radiation I've been exposed to," Sarah Jane explained for Martha's benefit as the Doctor looked faintly embarrassed. "And if I go to Harry he lectures me." She shrugged then waved her hand, dispelling that thought, "I do fine on my own."
"How are you still alive and in one piece?" Martha demanded.
"Lots of intervention." the Doctor said tiredly.
"Hey, Martha?" Rhys gave a half wave of hello as he entered the med wing.
Martha's eyes darted between Rhys and the little girl who had just sat up in bed, placing her book aside with a look of wonder at the new man. This wasn't good. Not remotely good. She'd had the Doctor disable the perception filter on Amy until she was well again, afraid it might interfere with anything medical or hide symptoms. "Rhys, what are you doing in here?" She stood from her seat and closed her laptop screen with a slight click.
He held his hand up, showing off a cut on the end of his finger, "Need a plaster and as per Doctor orders, I'm not allowed to get one myself." He said with a fake sad tone.
Martha nodded and hurried to the cupboard that held all the plasters and things that went with them. "Just take a seat on the table, please." God, please don't let him see Amy. Please let Amy know enough to hide her face...
"Can do. Was just mucking about with Mickey and got my hand on the desk..." Rhys' voice trailed off and Martha winced, eyes closed tight and shoulders hunched before she even turned around.
Sure enough he was now silent and turning pale, eyes locked on the little girl in the bed.
"Hi." Amy smiled and waved, teddy bear under her right arm and Yumo sprawled across her lap.
"No." Rhys said shortly.
"Now, Rhys...Be careful what you-" Martha started internally sighing.
"FUCK THAT!" Rhys roared, whirling to face Martha and pointing accusingly at Amy's bed, "Who the fuck is that?" he yelled.
"I think you know the answer to that...Rhys, we-" Martha said trying to calm the man.
"No. That's not possible. Not even remotely because someone would have told me. That's not right. There's no fucking way I know who that is!" He yelled, fists clenched so tight his scratch started bleeding harder.
"Okay, that's it. We're NOT doing this here." Martha declared and grabbed him by his arm, hauling him towards the doors. "Amy, Sweetheart, we'll be right back, okay?" she said sweetly to the little girl.
Amy nodded, looking scared as Yumo growled, eyes fixed on them.
"It's not that bad, actually." Rory said, walking with Gwen, her arm tucked through his, "I mean...I've got school, work and on occasion I'm running for my life but...There's also all these amazing things that not many people will ever get to see. I've seen the sun set on a plan that hosts three suns, I saw a lunar eclipse from a planet that's made of diamond...I got to ice skate on a planet frozen solid... Well, I fell on my bum a lot on a planet frozen solid." he admitted, making Gwen laugh, "And I already know I'll really be a Doctor." He said smiling.
"How so?" Gwen asked. The two had volunteered to go out and get coffees – or hot chocolate in three cases – for everyone while the others worked.
"Amy's mum is from our future, I'm sure you heard that grumbling match." at her nod he continued, "Well, she slipped up the first time we met and called me 'Dr. Williams'." He grinned brightly, "Can't wait for that." He said bouncing a little.
"You're going to be an amazing doctor, Rory." Gwen patted his upper arm with her left hand, leaving her right arm linked through his left. "I've no doubt about it." She said honestly.
"I'm glad you think so...Gwen, do you hear that?" Rory asked, frowning and looking around.
Gwen tilted her head slightly, "I don't...I don't hear anything, just silence, why?" she asked quietly.
"We're in the middle of a street full of traffic and people and yet nothing is heard but silence." Rory said softly, hoping it wasn't what he was thinking, even as he looked around.
"YOU LIED TO US!" Rhys screamed, gesturing angrily towards the glass doors and sending blood droplets off of his hand and onto the floor. "You said you didn't know!" he growled.
"To be fair, I wrote that book several years ago." Sarah Jane said weakly.
"It's not any of your business anyway." the Doctor glared at Rhys, stepping far too protectively in front of Sarah Jane." The action causing Rory to turn his attention to him.
"Not any of my business? Are you fucking kidding me?" Rhys looked incredulously at him then at Martha, "He's just...He's got brain damage, hasn't he?" he asked in amazement.
"OI!" the Doctor yelled angrily.
"Don't insult him!" Martha snapped.
Mickey let out a piercing whistle, silencing the room. "Two things." He said, holding up two fingers. "Sarah Jane's Amelia?" He jerked his thumb towards the med wing.
"Rory's, but yes." Martha nodded, crossing her arms over her chest.
Mickey dropped one finger and then pointed at himself, gestured to Martha and said simply, "Why?"
"Doctor-patient stuff. Illegal." Martha shrugged and smiled semi apologetically at her husband.
"Ah." Mickey nodded, "Proceed." he gestured for them to continue their fight and sat back on the couch to watch. He reached up and tugged Sarah Jane down to sit next to him when she paced past and just motioned for her to remain quiet and let Rhys rant.
"My life was ruined! My brother's life was ruined." Rhys continued, "He went through four therapists, too many medications to count and a lifetime of people blaming him! JACK RETCONED HIM!" he yelled again his anger evident to everyone who saw him.
"In Jack's defense, the retcon didn't work because Rory has a life threatening allergy to it." the Doctor tilted his head in thought, "Though I guess that means he technically poisoned him instead..." he trailed off sending a worried glance Rhys' way.
"Why is it quiet?" Gwen asked, reaching over and placing her hand on her gun, switching sides with Rory so her right hand was free.
"I think...It's got to be a crack." Rory said, eyes wide as he hurried her down the street, watching everything around him for something that wasn't right. Something...Cracks. It had to be.
The Doctor had told them about Venice, about silence falling with the Saturnine race. Silence and the end of all things.
"A crack? What's that mean?" Gwen asked looking concerned.
"A crack is a piece of space and time that shouldn't have touched." Rory told her, holding her hand tight and keeping her close protectively. "They merge the universe in a way they shouldn't and they eat away at the universe until something stops it." He continued looking around.
"How do you know this?" Gwen asked grabbing his arm to stop him.
"We've encountered several." Rory said turning to look at her so she could see the fear in his eyes.
"And you didn't think it necessary to tell an alien agency that DEALS with weird aliens things?" Gwen demanded.
"According to the Doctor your agency doesn't have tact, decorum or the intelligence to deal with it." Rory paused, "That being said, I think he hasn't told Sarah Jane either." He said shrugging.
"I haven't been able to talk to my brother in years! I hadn't seen him since he was a child because everyone thought I was a murderer!" Rhys fisted his hands, trying to keep from pacing or hitting anything. "And you just waltzed away with her without a bloody thought to us!" he continued his yells having quieted some since Martha had told him little Amy could probably hear him.
"I had a few thoughts, and I didn't waltz." the Doctor said sulkily, "I crash landed twice and stole some clothing before going to steal Luke." He admitted sheepishly.
"Oh my God." Gwen whispered in shock when her eyes finally caught what looked like pure light down the end of an alleyway. Rory had dashed to check the other side, leaving her on her own. It felt...like it was calling her, pulling her in. Something waiting and before she knew it her feet were moving of their own accord, pulling her forward and closer.
"Gwen!" Rory screamed, running hard across the road, barely avoiding a car heading down the road. "GWEN STAY BACK!" Rory yelled running towards her.
"THAT DOESN'T MAKE IT BETTER!" Rhys pulled at his own hair lightly in frustration, "You ruined lives! You tried to keep it hidden still!" his tirade continued, despite the guilty look on the Doctor's face.
"I've already apologized-" the Doctor started.
"NOT TO ME!" Rhys screamed again.
"GWEN!" Rory screamed as he got closer.
Soft...warm...why was it calling her forward? Why...
"GWEN!" Rory screamed again, running much too fast to stop as he grabbed hold of the back of her jacket and yanked her back and away from the crack.
The momentum was too much.
He couldn't stop.
As he threw all his weight into pulling her away from the crack, he threw himself forward.
"God knows what that bitch needed from the store anyway." Rhys growled out, "But of course I had to do her bidding. Fucking woman...I was accused as a murderer! What normal teen hangs out with little kids?" Rhys ranted.
"The kind with siblings who babysit." the Doctor offered, aware he'd done something and not sure how to make it up. He watched with shock as Rhys, Martha and Sarah Jane all seemed to close their eyes at the same time, Rhys jolting in place as if hit by a strong wind. It came at the same time something electrical buzzed at his brain, something wrong.
"I don't have any siblings." Rhys yelled, "Why the hell...What is wrong with him?" Rhys demanded of Martha. "Stop trying to get out of this. You took Amelia and nearly sent me to prison several times!" he yelled.
"What do you mean no siblings?" the Doctor felt panic shoot through him as he moved forward.
"I'm an only child." Rhys enunciated. "For the love of God." He growled.
"What?" Mickey looked confused, "What about Rory?" he asked looking at Rhys worriedly.
"Who the hell is that?" Rhys snapped.
"Tish?" Luke looked up at Tish in confusion. She'd just froze in place, halfway in putting her purchases in the car. "Tish, are you okay?" He asked quickly.
"'M fine. Why?" Tish mumbled.
"You're crying." Luke pointed out.
Tish reached up and wiped at her face with her fingers, staring in fear and fascination when her fingers came back wet.
[AN: Yes, it is possible to mistake the Boston Tea Party for having happened in Pennsylvanian. She did it, and she's an American! In my defense, I meant the Declaration being signed. Yes, but you didn't say that. Oh, and regarding what Sarah Jane wrote...let's just say it's the written equivalent of a rude gesture. Rory's gone! I'm like crying now. I know but it's been plotted since like chapter three. Of course I'm also crying over 'Once upon a time'. ONE FANDOM AT A TIME! Says the person writing about twenty fics in six fandoms. Bite me.]