(Welcome to my episodic crossover fic. This is episode six, and while you can start reading here, you might want to visit my profile to get the whole story with Episode One: Frozen in Time)
Back to the Doctor
Restart Part 1
As the robot was concentrating on the Doctor and River, he didn't notice Marty McFly and a little girl sneaking up behind him. Marty pushed the little girl away, hiding her behind a boulder, then grabbed a rock the size of a bowling ball off the ground.
"Subject acquired," came the robot's electronic voice.
"Not this time!" The Doctor yelled as he threw his rock and River opened fire, aiming for the robot's eyes. Marty kept low during the onslaught as, much to Marty's surprise, the robot flinched slightly and Marty realized with great relish that one of River's bullets had hit it right in the eye.
"Subject acquired," the robot regained its ground, taking a step forward and aiming its weapon once more.
"Time to get a new catchphrase!" Marty yelled at the great robot, jumping up from behind and bringing the heavy rock down on its shiny metal skull as hard as he could.
The robot stuttered a moment and both River and the Doctor took the opening to grab large rocks themselves and all three of them bashed the robot's head in unison.
A spark leapt from the robot's broken eye socket, and its remaining eye dimmed. The robot stopped moving.
"Is it dead?" Marty's breath was ragged.
"Don't be silly, you can't kill a robot," River brought her rock down on its head again for good measure. She wasn't certain three measly humans with rocks could stop a robot for good. It probably just needed to reboot.
The little girl popped her head out from her hiding place.
"Is it okay now Mr. Marty?" She asked in her quiet voice.
"Who's this?" The Doctor asked as the little girl ran out and wrapped her arms around Marty, looking at the two adults with uncertainty in her eyes.
"The sister, am I right?" River looked the girl over. There was no mistaking her resemblance to her brother, the same eyes, the same jaw-line.
Marty looked back at the robot. "We should probably get out of here."
"I agree," the Doctor said and started down the only hallway open to them.
Marty picked up the little girl, he turned on River's flashlight and handed it to the little girl so she could carry it. She had been so enamored by the electric torch that Marty couldn't keep it away from her.
"How did you find us?" River asked as they hurried down the hall, if that robot restarted and came after them nothing they did would be able to stop it again.
"By accident. She brought me down a pathway after I found her. I thought I'd use my spare time to get to know these caves a little better."
"How can you have spare time when we're working on a schedule?" River gave him a harsh look.
"What River meant to say is: Thank you Marty, we weren't sure what would happen if that thing froze us and appreciate you helping us escape."
"Yeah, well you're really going to thank me in a second," Marty smiled.
"Oh?" River's eyes softened at him.
"Tell them about what you showed me," Marty looked at the little girl.
"Up above, there was a white crack."
"A crack?" The Doctor raised his eyebrows.
"A crack of light, just floating in the air. Any thoughts?"
"Well I won't know anything about it until I see it for myself. How far is it?"
"Too far," River interrupted. "Any second now everything is going to restart."
"When it restarts, what will happen to her?" Marty looked at the little girl, feeling strangely protective of her. He didn't want her to be alone in the dark again. If he didn't let go of her, would she go back to the entrance with them?
"Well-" River began.
Marty blinked, and suddenly he was standing in the entrance, the Doctor by his side, River standing on the other side of the room, her back to them. His arms, empty, his pain, gone. It was like the last hour simply hadn't happened at all. Marty felt strange, like he had just woken up from a dream and gotten off a roller roaster at the same time. He felt sick.
Then River turned around, just as she had when they had entered the time loop the first time and smiled widely at them, her face positively beaming to see the Doctor standing before her.
"Hello sweetie," her voice was like honey.
Marty stared at her in confusion. It wasn't just the disorientation messing with his senses, there was something strange in River's eyes. She was wearing the exact same expression as when she had first seen them.
"You sure took your sweet time getting here," she continued, noticing nothing out of the ordinary herself.
"That's what you said last time," Marty narrowed his eyes.
"Hm, who's this?" River purred. "Not your usual carry-on luggage."
"Ha! That's what she said last time," Marty smiled and River's face dropped in confusion.
The Doctor's face was scrunched up in that familiar look of concentration as his mind raced. He looked hard at River.
"This complicates things."
"Something's wrong here," even River was catching on. "Has this happened before? Have you already been here?"
"You don't remember what we just went through?"
She looked uncertain. "I don't remember you."
"I thought our memories didn't get reset," Marty protested as he turned to the Doctor. "Why doesn't she remember us being here before?"
"Because we're the new variable. Us entering the loop has changed things. Our memories haven't been reset, but River's has because she's become part of an updated template."
"What are you trying to tell me? That if anyone else walks through the entrance our brains will get reset every time as well?"
"Well…" The Doctor looked back and forth between the two confused faced, shrugging in defeat. "Yes."
To Be Continued…
(It seems right that I'm returning from a hiatus with an episode called Restart. This break of mine wasn't planned, I hadn't meant to leave you guys on a cliffhanger for over a month and I do apologize. To make up for the hiatus, I give you: two complete episodes, a chapter uploaded once a day! That's right, folks: Two full weeks of glorious Back to the Doctor! I really enjoyed reading all the reviews while taking my break, it really helped me get back into the groove when I finally decided to sit down and start up again. Even more excitingly all the episodes together have gotten over 88 reviews! I'm really pleasantly surprised by the support I've gotten for this story, so thank you to all my fans who have given me reviews. There are too many of you to give thanks to everyone personally – which in itself is incredible – but I just want you guys to know that you make me want to work harder and make this the best story I can.)