This was written for the usuk lj com's spring work-a-thon event for the prompt: I'd like to see a Doctor Who scenario. Even though the Doctor is British in the series I'd like if the Doctor was America (because I feel his personality fits better), and England becomes his companion. Author can do whatever they wish with them.
So, we have Doctor!America, Companion!England, OC!British Isle brothers/sister, and alien!Hong Kong
Doctor Who-verse wise, America would be either the 12th or 13th regeneration. Also all of the aliens in the story were made up by me so, yeah.
Andrew = Scotland, Charlie = Whales, and Erin = Ireland, fyi.
Arthur finished locking the door to the café he worked at, only part time mind you, and yet he still found himself doing more work than his good-for-nothing boss and lazy co-worker who the good-for-nothing boss just let sleep all day and eat pizza. He leaned his head against the door, thinking about how much better his life would be without Antonio Fernandez and Lovino Vargas in it.
Unfortunately he was stuck with them, working in their god forsaken café serving the biggest idiots in London for minimum wage in the hopes that someday, maybe, if he was lucky, he'd be able to move out of his brothers' place and get a flat of his own. It was a nice dream, but Arthur knew his brothers depended too much on his 'rent' to let him move out.
Still, it was nice to dream.
Arthur pulled away from the door and started the walk home. It was a clear night, and a bit warm too. Maybe if he took the long way home, his brothers would be asleep by the time he got back and he could just go to sleep without any bother, a night with no problems, for once.
As soon as he thought that, a loud, American voice shouted "Get down!" and Arthur was tackled to the ground by a huge blond and red blur. By the time he got his bearings enough to sit up and yell at the man, he was pulled against the man's chest and rolled into a nearby alley. When they stopped, the man grabbed Arthur's hand and dragged him behind a dumpster.
"You okay?" he asked as he peered around the side of the dumpster, "It didn't hit you right?"
"Did what hit me?" Arthur asked, trying to tug his hand out of the man's surprisingly strong grip, "And just who the hell are you?"
He snapped back behind the dumpster just in time to avoid a laser that shot through the alley, "That. I'm The Doctor, by the way, and I think we should run now."
The Doctor started running down the alley, dragging Arthur along by his hand. Eventually they reached a dead end in the form of a brick wall and were forced to stop.
"Well this sucks," the Doctor decided as he glanced around for a way forward. More laser blasts struck the wall just above their heads as Arthur was pulled to the side and slammed against a wall to avoid it.
"Yeah, just so you know I usually have a plan for things like this," the Doctor continued as if Arthur were actually listening, "Actually, that's a lie. I never really have a real plan."
Arthur tried, in vain, to once again free his hand, "Just who the hell are-"
"Hey look!" he pointed across the alley, "A door! Awesome, we have an escape!" Arthur's hand was pulled again as they ran across the alley, dodging the lasers that were shot at them. When they got to the other side, they found the door to be locked.
The Doctor pulled a metal rod out of the pocket of his sweatshirt and fiddled with the door, hand still gripping Arthur's. While he was busy with that, Arthur turned his attention to the front of the alley where a shadowy figure was approaching them.
"Got it!" the Doctor cheered as he shoved his device back in his pocket, kicked open the door, and dragged Arthur through it before slamming it shut and locking it again, "C'mon," he pulled him through the kitchens of what appeared to be a, thankfully closed for the night, restaurant. When they got to the dining area, the Doctor finally let go of Arthur's hand.
"Awesome, I don't think he followed us in here," he laughed, loud and full of energy as he walked around the room. "Where's the light?"
There was some fumbling and cursing in the dark before Arthur heard a slight buzzing sound and the room was filled with light. He found himself staring at a man a bit younger than himself, wearing blue jeans and a red hooded sweatshirt. Bright blue eyes behind a pair of glasses were examining him as well. Suddenly he stepped forward, eyes intense, and lifted a hand to gently touch Arthur's eyebrows.
"Dude, were your eyebrows always about to eat your face or is that a new feature?"
Arthur slapped his hand away and stepped back, crossing his arms, and shot him a glare, "Just who the hell are you anyway? And what on earth is going on?"
"I'll take that as a yes," he smiled easily and slipped his hand in his pocket, "And I told you already, I'm The Doctor."
"Just The Doctor," his grin widened, if that was possible, "And what do they call you, or should I just call you Stuck-Up Eyebrows Guy?"
Arthur intensified his glare, "Arthur Kirkland, if you must know."
"Arthur?" the Doctor started pacing around the room, "Arthur," he repeated a bit slower, "Arthur Kirkland," he drew out the rs this time before turning suddenly to face him, "Does that sound weird to you?"
Arthur scowled, "Most of us prefer legitimate names as opposed to just using titles."
"Not your name, I like your name, Arthur Kirkland, it's nice," Arthur's face tinted pink as he started walking back, "It's the way I'm saying your name. Arthur Kirkland. What's up with my rs?"
"Well, you're American, or at least your accent is," the Doctor stopped his pacing and looked at Arthur as he explained, "All Americans sound like that."
"Ah, American," he nodded, "I thought it sounded familiar. I've never had an American accent before," he laughed, a loud and booming laugh that filled up the whole room, "This should be fun. Hey, Artie-"
"Arthur," he corrected.
The Doctor waved it off, "Whatever. How do I look?"
Arthur gave him a glance over before averting his eyes, "Fine."
"Just fine? A bit more description wouldn't kill you. Like, what color is my hair?" he asked as he ran his hands through it.
"You don't know your own hair color?"
"I didn't really have time to find a mirror," the Doctor explained with a chuckle, "Just grab some clothes and go. My selection wasn't very good, but I dunno," he looked over his shoulder and wiggled his hips, "I kinda like how the jeans make my butt look."
"My sweet ass," he turned and wiggled his hips again for Arthur, "I have a sweet ass now. And a six pack," he turned back and lifted his shirt to show him, causing Arthur's cheeks to turn bright red, "I'm gonna like this one," he lowered his shirt, "So tell me Artie-"
"Arthur," he ground out, "And if you ever call me anything else again-"
"What color is my hair? And eyes. It's weird that I actually need the glasses this time, and I was lucky to even find this pair, but-"
"Blonde," Arthur answered, cutting him off and taking a step towards him, "You're blonde. With blue eyes."
The Doctor sighed, "Damn, still not ginger," he ran his hands through his hair again, "It's not bad though. I mean, I've had worse," his hands found a part of his hair that stood up in the front. After several tries to get it to stay down, he gave up and turned his attention back to Arthur, "So seriously, how do I look?"
Arthur ran his eyes over the Doctor's form, "I, well," up his legs, "You see," across his chest, which, even through the sweatshirt, Arthur could still notice the muscles underneath, "Uh…" and finally up to the Doctor's young face, where he locked with those too blue eyes, "Fine. You look fine."
"Just fine?" he pouted and glanced around the room, "Is there a mirror in here?"
Arthur followed as the Doctor went off to search, "So are you going to explain to me exactly why we're locked in a restaurant after being chased through an alley?"
"Well," he explained as he went behind the cash register and started opening random drawers, "I was passing through the area, and by passing through, I mean running away, when I landed on the other side of town, and by landed, I mean crashed."
"Crashed?" Arthur uncrossed his arms and leaned on the counter, "Are you alright?"
"Yeah, it happens," he pulled a giant rubber snake out of one of the drawers and set it on the counter before he continued his search, "My ship needs some time to cool off though, so I was just sorta," he waved his hand in the air, "wandering around, you know? Of course you know; you were doing it to."
"I was going home," Arthur huffed and turned away, "not wandering around town like some lunatic. I had a specific destination in mind."
"You were meandering around kinda slow for someone going home this late at night," the Doctor remarked as he pulled out a bag of jellybeans and placed them beside the snake while staring right into Arthur's eyes, "There a reason you don't want to go home Artie?"
"It's Arthur," he turned back and glared, ignoring the slight redness in his cheeks from the question, "And why were you being chased if you were just wandering around?"
"Well," he turned back to the drawers, "The Parlthoin that was chasing me before caught up with me. He started chasing, I started running, he stupidly fired at me but his aim sucks so it was going towards you instead, I tackled you to the ground, he started chasing us so we started running, then we ran into here," he closed all the drawers and leaned on the counter towards Arthur, "And here were are. Does that answer all your questions?"
The Doctor smirked, "Didn't think so. And why didn't you tell me there's a giant mirror over there?" he pointed to the far wall before gathering everything on the counter and shoving it into his pocket. He then jumped over the counter and started walking towards the mirror, Arthur following right behind him, "So, is that me?" he asked, pointing at his reflection.
"Yes," Arthur nodded as he stared into the mirror as well.
"And you think I'm just fine?" the Doctor laughed, "Look at me! I'm sexy!" he turned his head and started making faces in the mirror.
"That's…a matter of opinion, I suppose," Arthur cleared his throat, "You still haven't said why you were being chased."
"Huh," the Doctor blinked and caught Arthur's eye in the mirror, "I guess I didn't. I woke up on the Parlthoins' planet butt naked in the middle of one of their biggest cities," he chuckled, "They're a race that worships body hair, and apparently I don't have enough to just lie around naked, so they're now after my head."
"Their… planet?" Arthur asked as he tentatively took a step forward, "As in someplace other than Earth?"
"Yup, it's in the Andromeda galaxy actually," the Doctor smiled and turned his attention back to his face, "Not too far away."
"Do you really expect me to believe you're being chased by aliens?"
"Humans," he shook his head, "They'll believe in fairies and ghosts, but mention something plausible like aliens and all you get is denial."
"Well you've certainly done plenty of things tonight to convince me you're nutters and very few to prove otherwise."
The Doctor pouted and turned to face Arthur, "He was blasting at you too. You seem like a smart guy. You can't tell me you actually think that weapon came from Earth, can you?"
"I, well," Arthur glared and shot back with, "Well what were you doing naked on an alien planet anyway?"
The Doctor's smile fell off his face as his eyes looked away, "That's… another story for another day, Arthur. Anyway," his smile returned in full force, "since we're not being chased anymore you'll probably want to go home now right?"
"I suppose," Arthur answered, still taken aback by the sudden mood shift.
The Doctor walked over to the front doors and pulled out his little device. After a few seconds of fiddling with the door, he had it unlocked and opened.
"What is that thing anyway?" Arthur asked as he walked towards the door.
"Sonic Screwdriver," he waved it in the air before putting it back in his pocket, "Never leave home without one. So which way do you live?"
Arthur blinked, "What, you're coming with me?"
"Well duh," he laughed, "It's not very heroic of me to let you walk home by yourself. I can't have any other random aliens attacking you."
"So you're a hero now?"
This time it was the Doctor's turn to blink, "Yeah. I guess I am."
Arthur rolled his eyes, "Very well then Doctor Hero, it's this way."
They started walking down the street in a comfortable silence, the Doctor fiddling with his screwdriver a bit before putting it back in his sweatshirt pocket.
"So," the Doctor said after a while, "You live alone?"
"Why do you want to know?"
He shrugged, "Just curious is all."
"No," Arthur responded after a pause, "I live with my good-for-nothing brothers."
"Someone's a bit bitter," the Doctor chuckled.
"Not by choice, mind you," Arthur stared down at the ground, "I just have nowhere else to go, so I'm stuck with them," he avoid the Doctor's gaze by staring at the darkened windows from the shops they were passing, "And what about you?"
"What about me?"
"Do you live alone?" he finally made eye contact with him, "Where do you live anyway? You never said."
"I'm sorta homeless right now. I just do a lot of travelling. But I am travelling alone," the Doctor grinned at him, "For now."
"Well," Arthur blushed and turned away, wondering why he had such a reaction to that last statement, "as long as you have fun with that, I suppose."
"I always do," the Doctor winked at him, "So any other family besides your brothers?"
"Just Andrew, Charlie, and me," Arthur sighed, "Well, and Erin, but she's studying in Ireland right now. Why all the questions about my family?"
"I'm just a curious person," the Doctor laughed, "and I find you interesting. What do you and your brothers do for a living?"
"If we're going to be playing this game, I believe it's my turn to ask a question," he nodded, so Arthur continued, "Where are you from?"
"What, some small backwater American town out west?"
"No," he paused and looked up at the stars, "No, it was a planet, a beautiful planet, very far away from here," he looked back at Arthur and kept walking, "But it's gone now."
"Are you trying to tell me you're an alien?" Arthur asked as he jogged to catch up.
"I think it's my turn for a question now," he smirked, "So, what do you and your brothers do for a living?"
"I work in a café all day, Charlie does menial office work, and Andrew throws our money away on things he doesn't need and alcohol."
"Sounds fun," Arthur grimaced, "And your sister? What's she studying?"
"It's my turn for a question."
"Yes, I am an alien. I'm a Time Lord, and yes, some aliens do look human, since that would be your next question right?" Arthur crossed his arms and stared at the shop windows rather than actually respond, so the Doctor went on, "What's your sister studying?"
"Mythology. Gaelic mythology at Trinity," he looked over to see the Doctor still smiling at him, "How old are you then?"
Arthur blinked, "You…don't look much older than 20."
"Perks of being a Time Lord," he laughed, "You?"
"23. Andrew's 29, Charlie's 25, and Erin's 20, since you're going to ask," he glared at the laugh he received.
Arthur stopped in front of the house he shared with his brothers. The Doctor continued walking for a bit before he noticed and stopped as well.
"So, I live here…" he gestured at the building behind him.
"I can see that," the Doctor chuckled, "Looks like I got you home safe and sound. Hero mission accomplished!"
"Yes, well," Arthur blushed for reasons he couldn't quite comprehend and he walked backwards up the stairs, "Good night then, Doctor."
"Good night, Arthur Kirkland," he winked as he turned to leave, "'Til we meet again."
Arthur woke up the next morning and convinced himself that everything that happened on his way home from work was just a hallucination produced by his tired mind.
Aliens, his scoffed, couldn't his mind come up with something a bit more creative than that? And it wasn't even an interesting alien, just a human looking one. Figures, someone taking any sort of interest in him would be from another planet, even in his own mind.
Arthur got up, avoided his brothers as best he could as he got ready, ate breakfast, went to work, and dealt with Lovino and Antonio. All in all, the day was shaping up to be just like any other.
"What can I get you Sir?" he asked the next customer without much enthusiasm.
"Well aren't you perky today Artie?"
Arthur's eyes shot up and found himself staring into the same blue eyes he saw last night.
"You…changed your shirt," was all he could think to say. Instead of the red sweatshirt the Doctor had worn yesterday, he was now in a plain white t-shirt and an American WWII bomber jacket.
"You like?" he asked, fingering the jacket, "I think it suits me better than the hoodie did. Anyway, I need to talk to you."
"Well, I'm working now, so-"
"But it's important!" the Doctor leaned forward, serious look in his eyes, and whispered, "Nothing strange has happened to you since last night has it?"
Arthur raised an eyebrow, "If you're talking about aliens again, then no, nothing like that has happened."
"Good," he smiled, "That's good then."
Arthur rolled his eyes, "Would you like to place an order?"
"You still don't believe me about the alien thing do you?" the Doctor actually had the nerve to look disappointed.
"Considering aliens don't exist, I'd have to say yes."
"What would I have to do to convince you that aliens are real?"
"Actually proof would help."
"Like showing you a real alien?" he waved, "Hello!"
"You're not an alien," Arthur insisted, "Even if you were, you look too human to count."
The Doctor pouted, "You look too Time Lord to count…"
He stared at him for a full second, "That was rather childish and immature of you," he glanced over to see a line had started building up behind him, "Are you going to order anything? I do have a job to do."
"A large coffee to go," he moved to the side to allow the other customers a chance to order, but still hovered in Arthur's general work area.
Arthur was content to simply ignore him as he got the next customer's drink, a double espresso with cream, when the front doors of the café opened with a loud bang, revealing a young Asian man with a piercing stare and eyebrows about as large as Arthur's own, hold a strange looking gun. The vast majority of the customers scrambled to duck behind something as he entered.
"I thought I told you not to follow me!" the Doctor shouted from somewhere on Arthur's left. Arthur, for his part, was frozen in place as soon as he noticed the man was pointing the gun at him.
He stopped in front of the counter, eyes locked onto Arthur's, and Arthur wasn't sure whether we was frozen in place by fear or curiosity about who this man was and why he was so interested in him of all people. He didn't register the faint buzzing noise to his left until the cappuccino machine practically exploded, covering the counter and everyone around it in milk. Arthur felt someone grab his hand and tug him towards the back.
"And we're off running again!" he heard the Doctor laugh, "It's the best part, isn't it?"
The two of them burst into the back room, startling Antonio and Lovino from their compromising position. Arthur was about to call them out on making out in the back when he was dealing with the customers all by himself, but the Doctor interrupted.
"Sorry, just passing through!" he shouted, pointing his screwdriver at the back door and led Arthur through it, adding, "Don't mind us!" as they broke out into a run.
"What the hell are you doing this time?" Arthur shouted as he was pulled up the back alley and onto the main street.
"Uh, saving you last time I checked," the Doctor shouted back.
Arthur rolled his eyes, "Only because you keep putting me in danger! Is this to satisfy your stupid hero kink?"
"What? No, that alien is after you."
He looked around and noticed the Doctor was leading him through a park, "He was after you, last I heard. You keep dragging me into this."
"I do not," he slowed to a stop and turned to face Arthur, "You were in the wrong place at the wrong time last night; I can't control that. And I was only in the café before because I knew he was coming after you."
"And why else would he come after me?" he raised an eyebrow, "The only reason he knows of my existence is because of you!"
"Well," the Doctor bit his lip and looked away, "Yeah, I guess that's sorta true," his eyes snapped back on Arthur's face, "But he would have found out about you anyway! Simply be being on this planet he would have found you."
"Which, may I remind you is, again, your fault," Arthur blinked. Was he actually buying into this madman's ravings about aliens?"
"Well, maybe," the Doctor blushed, "B-but now's not the time to be playing the blame game! Artie, you're in real danger!"
Arthur was taken aback, just a little, at how serious he looked, "What kind of danger?"
"Remember how I said the Parlthoins worshiped body hair?" Arthur nodded, "Well different clans worship different parts of the body, and the one chasing me just happens to be a face worshiper."
"I still don't see what this has to do with-" he was cut off by a hand lightly touching his eyebrows.
"Has anyone ever told you," the Doctor started, "that you have really bushy eyebrows?"
"Sh-shut up!" Arthur slapped his hand away, "They're genetic! I-it runs in the family!"
"I know that. Hell, most intelligent life forms would know that," he pulled his hand back, "But face worshipping Parlthoins have this myth, and well," he looked away and scratched the back of his neck, "The one chasing me kinda thinks your housing his god."
Arthur stared at him, "You're kidding, aren't you? This whole thing is just an elaborate joke right?" Who would ever confuse poor, good for nothing Arthur Kirkland with being a god?
"I wish I was…"
He could feel the laughter starting from somewhere deep down in his gut and slowly make its way up through his chest until it finally burst from his mouth. It took a few moments, during which Arthur had to clutch his stomach with one hand to keep from outright keeling over, to get it under control.
"Me, a god," he chuckled, "That's rich. Well, I certainly don't see the problem."
"He can just take me back to his home planet then. Nothing decent for me on Earth anyway."
"Artie, listen to me-"
"After all my hard work I could use a lifetime of worshipping," he chuckled again.
"Arthur!" the Doctor gripped his shoulders and forced him to pay attention, "I didn't say he thinks you are a god-"
"What, yes you did-"
"No, I said he thinks you're housing one," he loosened his grip by a fraction, "According to his legends, your eyebrows are a sign that you have one of his gods trapped inside of you. In order to get it out, he's going to have to…um…"
"Kill me," Arthur stared blankly at him as it sunk in, "He'll have to kill me, won't he?"
"Yeah," the Doctor released him and let his arms fall to his side, "And it won't be pretty. He'll have to cut off your eyebrows so the god has a way out, probably your hair too, just to be safe."
"Like," he swallowed, "s-scalping?"
"Yeah," he nodded, "Then he'll systematically cut off your appendages, starting with your toes and working up, so you can't be used as a vessel to trap gods again. Well, you'll probably bleed out from the scalping by the time he got to your legs, so-"
"Yes, thank you," Arthur sat down on the nearby park bench and rubbed and hand against his forehead, "I'd rather not get a graphic description of my imminent death if that's alright with you."
"Sorry," the Doctor moved to stand in front of him, "But don't worry Arthur. I'm not going to let him hurt you."
Arthur lowered his hand and saw that the Doctor was looking at him with such determination that he couldn't help but believe him.
"So what's your next plan, Doctor?"
The Doctor grinned and held out his hand, "You're starting to trust me."
Arthur frowned and took it, allowing himself to be pulled to his feet, "Not at all."
The smile didn't waver as the Doctor led him away.
"You want me to hide in an old police box?" Arthur asked with a raised eyebrow.
"It's not a police box, it's my TARDIS," the Doctor explained as he fiddled with his key, "Besides, police boxes are safe, and this one is the safest place in the whole universe."
"They're outdated," he eyed the box, "and what's a TARDIS?"
"Time And Relative Dimension In Space. Basically, it travels through time and space," he looked over and grinned in a way that made Arthur want to smack him as he pushed the door open, "Try not to be too impressed."
Arthur rolled his eyes as he stepped inside the box and tried very hard not to immediately let his jaw drop. Slowly, he backed out through the door and peeked around the side to see that yes, the outside was just your average blue police box that ended after a few meters, and a quick pat on the sides proved them all to be solid wood. Arthur peeked back inside the box, staring at the impossibly large room with its numerous ladders and staircases that seemed to go on forever. At the center of the room was a giant hexagon with a glass tube in the middle. Scattered across the hexagon were several colorful buttons, levers, and all sorts of miscellaneous objects, making Arthur assume the Doctor's junk drawer just exploded on it.
"It's…" Arthur started as he stared up, trying to find the ceiling.
"Bigger on the inside?" the Doctor finished as he shut the door, "Really freakin' impressive? If it's too much for you to handle Artie-"
"Not nearly big enough to hold your ego," Arthur smirked at the Doctor's pout as he strolled over to the center of the room and leaned on a side of the hexagon, "All of time and space and you hide me here?"
"I told you, it's the safest place in the universe," the Doctor answered as he entered and shut the door behind him, "Nothing can get in that door, and believe me, plenty have tried."
"So that's your brilliant plan? We hide in a box?"
"You hide in the most technologically advanced box you've ever seen," the Doctor corrected as he sauntered over to where Arthur was and pulled down a screen, "while I find the Parlthoin and convince him to leave you alone."
"You, armed with, what was that thing again, a screwdriver? Are going to convince a hostile alien that thinks I'm housing his god and who's after your head to just leave us alone all by yourself?"
"Something like that," he hit a few buttons, causing the screen hanging overhead to bleep and light up, "at the very least, I'm going to convince him to leave you alone."
Arthur felt his cheeks tint pink, "A-and, if the only way he'll leave me alone is if he takes you in?"
"Then he takes me in," the Doctor frowned at the screen and hit a few more buttons, "To tell you the truth Artie, right now he's more interested in you than me."
"I see," he cleared his throat and looked the other way, "Thank you. For helping me."
"It's what I do," the Doctor grinned, "Of course you wouldn't need helping if your eyebrows were a normal size."
"I-it's genetic! It runs in the family!" Arthur's eyes widened as he froze like a deer in headlights. He snapped out of it and frantically pulled on the Doctor's sleeve, "My eyebrows, they run in the family!"
"Yes I get," the Doctor brushed him off as he stared at the blinking screen, "It's not your fault you look like a freak."
"No, that's not it," the Doctor raised an eyebrow and looked over at him, "Bushy eyebrows run in the family, so everyone in my family has these eyebrows…"
The Doctor's eyes widened as the monitor beeped loudly. He looked over and cleared his throat, "Uh Artie, one of your brothers doesn't happen to work at Smith & Co. does he?"
"Charlie does…" Arthur slowly lowered his hand, "D-don't tell me…"
"That's where our Parlthoin friend is right now."
Arthur stared blankly at the screen, not understanding nor willing to understand the symbols across it, "We need to get there right away!" He bolted towards the door but was held back by a pair of arms.
"Artie, relax," the Doctor said in his ear, "Didn't I tell you my TARDIS can travel through space and time?"
"My brother is in danger!" Arthur shouted as he struggled to get away, "We don't have time for you to brag about your spaceship!"
"I'm not bragging, I'm just saying that my ship can get us there faster than you can run."
"Oh," Arthur relaxed and was released, "Well then, uh…"
"Yeah, let's go!" the Doctor spun around and started hitting buttons and pulling levers at a frenzied pace, "You might want to hold onto something."
Arthur crossed his arms and pouted, content to ignore that instruction, when suddenly the whole room violently shook, causing him to loose his balance and forcing him to hold on to the nearby railing. He heard the Doctor's laugh as the room continued to shake.
"You still with me Artie?" Arthur managed a nod, "Mind pressing the flashing green button right in front of you for me?" He nodded again and reached over to do as instructed. The sound of a key scraping against a piano wire filled the room, and the shaking stopped as suddenly as it began.
"Well, we're here," the Doctor grinned as he made his way towards the door.
"Wait, so," Arthur shook his head and jogged to catch up with him, "That shaking was us moving?"
"Of course," he pushed open the door with a flourish, "And here we are!"
Arthur poked his head outside to see that they actually had moved to right outside his brother's work. He stepped and looked around as the Doctor shut the door behind him and saw that not one of the people milling about seemed to notice two men emerging from a police box.
"And people don't care that there's a random police box here?"
"Perception filter," the Doctor answered as he stepped forward, "I've found that people don't really notice things if they don't want to. Anyway, we've got a brother to find. Do you know where in the building he works?"
Arthur looked up at the 30 story building and realized he had no clue, "Maybe."
All of a sudden screams filled the air as an endless crowd of people ran out of the building and onto the street.
"Okay, my guess is he's wherever this mob is coming from," the Doctor took Arthur's hand and gently nudged him towards the front entrance, "C'mon, we don't have a lot of time."
Arthur nodded and followed the Doctor inside.
"Hey you," the Doctor stopped someone in the crowd, "We're looking for Charlie Kirkland. Do you know where he is?"
"You're a bit out of luck," came the reply, "Some crazy kid came in here, started shooting the whole place up looking for him. Probably found him by now."
"And you just left him there?" Arthur took a step forward and shouted at him, "You all just fled and left my brother to some crazy-"
"Hey not now Artie," the Doctor pulled him back, "People do what they think is best in this situations. Not everyone's a hero like us," he turned back to the man, "Where would our crazy friend have found Charlie?"
"3rd floor, near the back," and he took off without another word.
The Doctor and Arthur followed his instructions and made their way to the third floor. It was deserted, most people on the upper floors either taking the elevator out or still unaware of what was happening. Sounds of a struggle came from a nearby office, accompanied by shouts that Arthur recognized as his brother's. Arthur let go of the Doctor's hand and ran into the office before he could properly think about what he was doing.
The Parlthoin had a man with short brown hair and the same striking green eyes and bushy brows as Arthur pinned to the floor, knife in hand dangerously close to his head. Charlie, for his part, was fighting the valiant fight of keeping the knife away, but it was clear he couldn't keep it up for much longer. Arthur immediately tackled the Parlthoin, effectively throwing him off his brother while at the same time putting himself in his place.
"Charlie get out of here!" he managed to shout as he grabbed the Parlthoin's wrists to hold him off.
"It matters not," the Parlthoin said in a calm voice, "As soon as I release you, I will merely track him down again and release him too. And when I'm done with that, I'll find the other two and release them as well."
"Oh hell no," Charlie launched himself on top of the Parlthoin and pulled him off of Arthur, "I don't know who you are or what you want with us, but like hell am I going to let you touch anyone in my family!"
Arthur panted and used the desk to pull himself up as Charlie struggled to keep the Parlthoin away from him. A quick elbow to the gut forced him to drop the alien however, and he quickly had Charlie pinned against the wall instead.
"Charlie!" Arthur shouted as he jumped at the Parlthoin again, but was stopped by a hand on his chest and a surprisingly serious pair of blue eyes. The Doctor looked at the knife and raised his screwdriver, causing the knife to spark in the Parlthoin's hand and go crashing to the floor.
"C'mon, we don't really need that do we?" the Doctor asked as the Parlthoin released Charlie, who quickly made his way to Arthur's side near the Doctor, "Let's just talk it over like the civilized beings that we are."
"Arthur," Charlie whispered, "Do you have any idea what's going on?"
"Yeah," Arthur muttered in response, "Just, he's the Doctor. Let him handle it."
"Doctor what?" but Arthur hushed him as the Parlthoin started speaking.
"This matter does not concern you Criminal. Stand aside and let me have the meat sacks."
"They're not meat sacks, they're humans!" the Doctor gestured towards Arthur and Charlie, "Just like all the other humans who live on this planet, they're independently thinking, living, things."
"They are meat puppets created by the Deqoiv during the First War to entrap my Gods and keep them from my people," he reached into a back pocket and pulled out a gun, "My instructions were to return you alive, Criminal, so you can face charges from the High Court, but if I bring them back four Gods, I'm sure they won't forgive me for brining you back as a corpse."
"Kay, few things I don't like about that," he held up a hand and started counting off, "Firstly, the First War is just a myth, I know I was there, and the Deqoiv left peacefully after intense rounds of negotiations with your people and the Arapos over mining and trading rights, I know I led them. Secondly, Arthur's a good guy once you get past the eyebrows and the temper-"
"And the cooking," Charlie supplied, "Never eat his scones." Arthur whacked his brother on the shoulder as the Doctor continued.
"Yeah, but he's really a good guy. And I really haven't met them but I'm sure his brothers and sister are good people too. And I kinda like Arthur, so I'd like it if he wasn't dead, and Arthur kinda likes his family, so I'd like it if they weren't dead either."
"W-what?" Arthur blushed and inched away from his brother, who was giving him that look out of the corner of his eye, "I-I don't like my family. I just put up with them is all and I don't want them scalped. Not because I particularly like them or anything-"
"Yeah, not helping Artie," the Doctor cut him off, "no one in this room is buying that for a second. And thirdly, and this is the most important one," he turned back to the Parlthoin and flashed him a confident grin, "I'm the Doctor. It's going to take more than lil' old you to kill me."
"We shall see about that," he aimed the gun and was ready to fire but was stopped by the sound of chuckling.
"Yeah about that. See, I know a few things right now that you don't. Like right now at this moment," he jumped, landed, and grinned, "We're on planet Earth, and it's about two-thirds water. These," he threw his arms around Arthur and Charlie, tugging them right up to his side, "Are humans. They live here and they are also about two-thirds water, but I think that's just a coincidence."
"I'm well aware where we are and what humans are Criminal," the alien shrugged, "Frankly I'm indifferent to the human race. I'm only after the four. And you, of course."
"Of course," the grin grew on the Doctor's face as he let go of the Kirklands and put a hand in his jacket pocket, "Then what you probably don't know is that humans are tricky little devils and like to make all kinds of things, like these," he pulled out a bag of jelly beans and tossed them between his hands, the Parlthion eyeing them carefully, "Jelly beans. I mean really, who looks at jelly and says 'I wish this was in bean form?' Only the human race. And they make it awesome too," he reached into the bag and pulled out a handful, "They're awesome. I love them, even if they aren't made of jelly. You know what they use instead?" The Parlthion raised an eyebrow but didn't answer, "Sugar. Lots and lots of sugar."
Quick as a flash, the Doctor tossed the handful of jellybeans in the air and aimed his screwdriver at them, causing them to explode in the Parlthion's face. As he dropped his gun, screaming in agony, the Doctor grabbed the two Kirklands' wrists and dragged them out of the office.
"Is… is he dead?" Arthur asked as the Doctor kicked open the door to the stairwell, "Did you kill him?"
"No," he responded as he released the Kirklands, shut the door, and began sonicing it, "No, just burned him a little. See, Parlthion's have this allergy to sugar. He'd have to eat about half a bag of pure sugar to die. Blowing those up in his face was more like, I dunno, getting lemon juice a paper cut about a dozen times."
"Ah, well, that's good then."
"Good?" Charlie raised an eyebrow at his brother, "Art, the guy is trying to carve us up! I'm not sure what's going on, but I'm positive things'll be better if whoever that is was out of the picture."
"He's confused," Arthur insisted, "He a long way from home and he just thinks that we're something we're not. You'd condemn him to death for that?"
"If he's trying to kill you and Andrew and Erin and me, yes," he curled a fist and glared at Arthur, "I'll not have him hurting my family."
"A bit worse than that," the Doctor replied as he lowered his screwdriver and stepped away from the door, "If he does bring back your corpses to the High Court, they'll want to fully investigate this planet for anymore trapped Gods. If the word gets out to the other clans that Gods were found here, and it will, they'll want to send their own investigative teams to check it out. And, well, the investigative process ain't pretty," he scratched the back of his head, "And I'd probably be stuck back on their planet facing charges, so I wouldn't be able to stop it."
"So," Arthur took a step back, "What you're saying is…"
"If you four are killed and your dismembered corpses carted back to the Parlthion's home planet, you'd be responsible for Earth's first intergalactic invasion."
"And you're supposed to stop this with jellybeans?" Charlie said as he crossed his arms and leaned against the wall.
"No," he put his screwdriver back in his pocket and turned to face them, "the jellybeans supposed to distract him long enough for me to get Phase 2 of my plan ready."
"And what, pray tell, is Phase 2?"
"Still working on that part," a loud thud from the door sounded as the Doctor grabbed Arthur's and Charlie's hands again, "We should start running now."
"You have to have thought of something!" Arthur shouted as they ran down the stairs, "you're the Doctor for godsake! You must have some sort of plan!"
"I'm working on it!" was the shouted response.
"Just find more sugar and kill it!" Charlie suggested, "If he's going to start an invasion it's the best way to stop him!"
"Three problems with that," the Doctor kicked open the stairwell door for the second floor and pulled them through it, shutting and sonicing it as he further explained, "One, we're in an office fully equipped with officey things. Sure, there's some sweetener in the coffee room, but that's just not going to be enough to do anything other than give him hives. Two, after that stunt I pulled with the jellybeans, that's the first thing he'll expect. Three, and this is the important one, I don't want to kill him!"
"So you have a plan then," Arthur glanced at the door, "To make him peacefully leave the planet without my family and me?"
"Um, sorta?" The thud sounded against the door again, "No real time to explain it Artie but here," he shoved his screwdriver into Arthur's hands, "Setting 7BG should get the elevator working for you, and this," he handed him a key, "is the TARDIS key. Hide in there for a bit. Call your brother and sister, make sure they're alright and whatever."
Arthur glanced over the gadgets he was given before looking up at the Doctor, "But what about you?"
"Don't worry about me Artie," he smiled and placed a hand on his shoulder, "I'll be alright. You two need to get out of here now."
"But-" Arthur started, but was cut off when Charlie grabbed his arm and nodded. The Doctor gave him a smile and a nod as the door thudded even louder this time. Arthur broke free of his brother's grasp for a moment to reach over and hug the Doctor.
"I'd better see you again," he muttered into his jacket.
"Of course," the Doctor laughed as he returned the gesture, "I'm gonna want my stuff back in one piece."
Arthur nodded as he pulled away and ran with his brother towards the elevators. After a few moments of fiddling with the screwdriver, he managed to summon an elevator just in time to hear the door finally crash open. Arthur risked one last look over his shoulder before Charlie pulled him onto the elevator and got them back to the lobby and safely outside.
"Charlie! You're alive!" Charlie's coworkers came rushing forward and surrounded him, pushing Arthur off to the side as he stared up at the building, clutching the Doctor's screwdriver tight.
"He's…not going to come out, is he?" he asked no one in particular. Arthur glanced back over at his brother, still surrounded by worried coworkers, and gave him a silent apology in his head before he rushed back into the building.
"How did you find him here anyway?" Arthur followed the Doctor's voice through the hallways, "I mean, you knew about Arthur's existence, so he couldn't have been too hard for you to track, but how did you even know he had family?"
"Two men, in the back of the café. They were more than happy to tell me everything I wanted to know about 'Arthur Kirkland.'"
Arthur peeked into the office they were in, the same one he had first found the Parlthion with Charlie. The Doctor was seated at the desk, hands tied behind him around the chair, while the Parlthion was fiddling with something that looked like a pager.
"I can't get a good enough signal on this to get us to my ship," the Parlthion sighed before pushing it across the desk to the Doctor, "You do something with it."
"Uh, I'm a bit tied up at the moment, so unless you want to, like, untie me…"
"For a Time Lord you're quite useless," the Parlthion sighed and looked around, forcing Arthur to duck back behind the door, "You gave your sonic to your little meat puppet I'm guessing? I'll just have to find him then."
"That wasn't part of the deal," Arthur was shocked by the sudden steel in his voice, "You promised to leave this planet alone, Gods and all, if I surrendered peacefully to you and went on trial for all of my crimes, not just the ones against you. Well here I am, going with you towards your ship. I'm keeping up my end of the bargain."
Arthur's eye widened as it sunk in. The Doctor had sacrificed himself to get the Parlthion to leave him and his family, and the Earth, he supposed, alone. And no one but Arthur would ever know.
"I can see that."
"So keep yours, and I won't have to break mine."
"Is that a threat, Doctor?"
Arthur peeked back into the room to see the Parlthion glaring and the Doctor smirking.
"No, just a promise," he looked directly at Arthur and winked, "I'm kinda hungry. I could go for some scones right about now."
Scones? Arthur didn't have the time or the materials to make a batch of scones, and how on earth were scones going to be of any help in their current situation?
"You're my prisoner," the Parlthion went on, "You'll eat what I tell you to, when I tell you to."
"Just saying, even something from the garbage would be good at this point."
Arthur crept over to the garbage can in front of him and peered inside to find that Charlie had thrown out the lunch he'd painstakingly made for him that morning, complete with several scones. Honestly why did he even bother if he was just going to be an ungrateful git, but there were more important things at hand right now. He groped around the trash until he got his hands on the scones and rushed back as quietly as he could to the office door, still wondering how scones were going to help.
"I am sure it would be easier for me to keep my end of the bargain," the Parlthion was saying as he opened the door to reveal Arthur standing there, wide eyed and pale, "if you did not tempt me so. Planning an escape are we?"
"Just picking up lunch," Arthur chuckled as he was grabbed and pulled into the office.
"Indeed," he glanced down at the scones in Arthur's hand before looking at the Doctor, "Since it is now obvious you were planning to break your end of our deal, it is only right that I break my end."
"Yeah, you caught me," the Doctor laughed, "Just let us have a last meal alright? It's only fair."
The Parlthion eyed the scones again before he sighed and gave in, "Very well. Your meat puppet will have to feed you, however. I am not stupid enough to untie you."
"That's cool," the Doctor smiled as Arthur walked over to him and held out one of the scones for him to bite, "It's a bit rude though," he said between bites, "Me eating by myself," he swallowed, "You want one too?"
"If it will get you to shut up," he stomped over and snatched a scone from Arthur's hand, taking a small, careful bite. He chewed it for a moment before going slack and passing out.
"Sheesh Artie," the Doctor chuckled, "You're not supposed to put that much sugar in scones."
"Charlie says that they're bitter. I was just trying to make them sweeter," he shrugged before realizing what just happened, "And you! Mr. 'It's fine Artie I totally have a plan!' What were you thinking?"
"I was thinking no one bought any scones at the café despite it being well into the afternoon," he explained, "and even your brother complained specifically about your scones before, so I figured if he tried one he'd realize you weren't housing anything close to a God and leave you alone," that earned him a whack to the head, "But him passing out works too."
"And what would you have done if I hadn't come back for you?"
"I'd have thought of something. Something awesome, I'm sure," Arthur rolled his eyes, "So are you going to untie me or what?"
"Yes, of course," he walked behind the chair and knelt down to do just that, "Honestly, where would you be without me?"
The Doctor chuckled, "Nowhere pleasant I'm sure," a brief pause, then, "You know, your scone wasn't half bad."
Arthur refused to acknowledge the warmth spreading across his face, "Really?"
"Yeah I don't know why everyone was complaining," the Doctor stood as the ropes came free, stretching his arms to get the feeling back in them. "We should get going Artie," he smiled at him, "Your brother's probably worried about you."
Arthur felt himself nod and smile back.
Both of them had left the building together. Arthur had immediately been swept up into a crowd of people led by a worried Charlie who demanded an explanation of what just happened. Half way through his story, he glanced over and realized the Doctor had vanished without a trace, without a goodbye.
Charlie, after hearing the full story, had Arthur take the rest of the day off and had go home to lie down. Understandable, considering he probably sounded like a raving madman.
Arthur sat on his front stairs, staring up at the stars. Perhaps it had all been a dream, a fantastical adventure his overworked mind had made up as an escape for him. That would have made the most sense.
The silence surrounding him was broken by the sound of a key scraping against a piano wire. Arthur jerked his head up at stared at a spot across the street where a blue police box was materializing out of thin air. Frown firmly set on his face, he stood up and crossed the street, glaring as a figure emerged from the fully materialized box.
"And just where the hell have you been?" Arthur glared as the Doctor smiled.
"Sorry Artie," he smiled easily and leaned on the side of the box, "I had to drop our Parlthion friend off at home. Beside, I figured you'd want to spend some quality time with your family. You didn't think I'd leave you behind, did you?"
"You do have this habit of coming and going when it suits you."
"But I gave you the TARDIS key. I told you I'd be coming back for that."
"Well fine then," Arthur took said key from his pocket and placed it in the Doctor's hand, "There's your key. Now you can just be on your way."
The Doctor looked between Arthur and the key, "I didn't come back for the key, Arthur. I came back for you."
Arthur felt his face grow warm as he stared at the Doctor, who was staring very hard at a nearby tree, "That is, you know, if you, like, want to come with me."
Arthur continued to stare, "Why wouldn't I want to go with you?"
"It's dangerous," he replied, looking straight at Arthur, "There's a strong chance you'll never see home again, never see any of your friends and family, if you choose to travel with me. And even if you do make it out alive," he bit his lip and looked away, "There's a million and one reasons why traveling with me is a bad idea."
Arthur took a cautious step forward and placed a comforting hand on his arm, "Do you want me to go with you?"
"I, yes. I want…" he paused and turned to face Arthur, "traveling by myself is no fun, and I like you enough. But Arthur-"
"Then that matter is settled," he walked over to the door and threw it open, "I'm coming with you."
The Doctor smiled the biggest smile Arthur had seen on his face yet as he entered the TARDIS, "So, Mr. Kirkland, you have all of time and space at your doorstep.
Where do you want to go first?"