"Rose River" AU
Chapter Twenty Two
- Surprise -
A/N: I don't own squat, except what I write.
This part of the story is something that I'm doing my damnedest to not plagiarize from the Symbolon series by Jenrose. While I did get the idea from there, the happenings are drastically different.
World War Three was just diverted, thanks to Mickey the Idiot and his well placed hacking of a missile. The Doctor was on the phone with Rose, and had just 'tantalized' her with the Horse Head Nebula Storm. Still though. Too many things didn't make sense. After telling her it'd be two hours, he rang off and got to thinking while he was manufacturing a program to wipe anything to do with him off the global networks.
After he burned the disc and placed it in a jewel case, he was in a full brood. "I landed thirty three seconds from the moment I took off, after going round the bend for two months. How in the name of everything did I get it off by a year?" he shouted.
Completely frustrated, he called Rose again. ~"Almost done packin'. Gimme a few, yeah? Down in ten minutes."~ Rose said instead of saying hello.
"Good, but that's not why I'm callin'," he started.
~"You're Not Leaving Me Behind!"~
"Never dream of it. Listen. I'm concerned about why the TARDIS was off by a year. I don't want that 'appenin' again. I need to go round the block with the old girl, and check the temporal stabilizers. Might be nothin', but I'm … I don't want that 'appenin' to your mother again. Slaps are one thing, but I can't imagine not knowing what's goin' on with you for three hundred and sixty five standard days. I'm not 'avin' it, so I'm gonna do an end run 'round Pluto without the time circuits on."
~"Not to sound stupid or anythin', but wont you need them on to check them out?"~
The Doctor cringed. Too smart, he thought. "I say not on, but what I mean is in standby and runnin' in parallel. If the sequences don't match up right, then it'd be like watching the VCR with the sound bein' five minutes late."
~"Bet it's worse with a DVD player, yeah?"~ she teased him.
"Ah. Yeah. Back in … forty five minutes. Takes that long to get out there and back in normal flight."
~"Come back,"~ she said, her voice sounding a bit small.
His hearts twinged at that. "I promise. If it's nothin' big, then we can be off and fix it on the fly. If not, then you can spend the night while I bang out what's wrong." His voice dropped. "I don't wanna do that to you again."
~"Okay. See you soon."~
He could swear he heard her smiling. "Soon," he agreed with a grin and rang off. Tapping his fingers on his arm, he checked himself. "Five days," he murmured. "One hundred and twenty two hours, and seventeen minutes. That's all it's been, and I don't want to disappoint her." Shaking himself out of it, he went around the console.
Once he was in the vortex, he backtracked a year and tried to see if there were any burps or hiccups that might have caused him to bounce off the location. Coming up with nothing, he was about to go back when a bleeping grabbed his attention.
Angling the monitor up, he flicked the screen through several scans and frowned. "Tha' … That is not supposed to happen," he enunciated with a scowl. Setting the coordinates, he made to land.
Exiting the TARDIS on the roof of the building, the Doctor stumbled a bit when he felt three new minds register in his head. One was very familiar, but the other two weren't. One of those two didn't feel right at all, but also felt so right all at the same time. "What the hell's goin' on?"
He pulled out his sonic and did a cursory scan, and was interrupted when he saw that his ship had graffiti on the side of it. "Bad Wolf," he read with a frown. "Find that little blighter later," he muttered.
Coming down the stairs, he double checked his sonic at the door of Rose's flat. A small debate over knocking went by the wayside, as he unlocked it without really thinking about it. It was quiet, but the sound of a TARDIS was beckoning him. Sounded like his TARDIS, but a hell of a lot stronger.
Exiting the small hall, his eyeballs nearly popped out of their sockets when he saw the ship. The top of it was actually embedded into the ceiling. "This … Is wrong." No one should be messing with this flat, and the fact that three Time Lords were inside had him confounded. He didn't feel an echo of himself anywhere, but this was his ship. Newer looking paint, and that ambulance logo was on the door again. The shape of the shell was close, but didn't exactly match any of the previous ones.
He paused, thinking that this might be something he'd be doing in the future. But, the fact remained that there were three other Time Lords in there while he wasn't. One of them he could literally tell how she was feeling. And it was definitely a she, and she was extremely happy.
Setting himself, he unlocked the door and went inside. Laughter from further in the now massive console vestibule ceased when the door creaked rather loudly. His mouth dropped open when he saw the console. It was the same, but much improved. The entire place was spotless and near to shining.
The voice he heard wasn't expected at all, because it was Rose's. "Oh, SHIT!"
"Language," the Doctor complained, then paused. The happy female mind was now in a state of panic, and felt so strong. He'd never felt a mind that powerful before.
"You're not supposed to be here!" Rose hissed loudly.
Stepping around the console, the Doctor saw Rose, Jackie, some blond girl, and… a plethora of Gallifreyan oaths and swears came out of his mouth when he saw her. Mouth completely agape, the Doctor wobbled on his feet. "M … muh … Mother?"
Celeste stood and made her way over to him. Jenny looked to her mother and commented, "That's why you're pissed at John? I don't understand." Rose waved her down with a shushing noise.
Jackie recognised him and her mouth dropped open. "He's too old for you!" she hissed at Rose.
Jenny swapped seats and put her hand over Jackie's mouth. Mouth to her ear, Jenny made her displeasure known. "That's my father you're talking about, now shut it while we deal with this disaster. It's too soon for him, and I've never seen him with that face before."
The Doctor's eyes never left Celeste as she came up to him. Her soft smile made his stomach drop. "Son, we're out of synch. Calm now. Breathe."
"Before or after?" he whispered.
Knowing what he meant, she smiled. "After, darling. I'm so proud of you."
A small sound leapt out of his throat, and the Doctor bent down to hug her close. Celeste held onto him tightly, while the Doctor started to literally vibrate with emotion. His throat started working again, and the sound grew from a small moan to a loud howling.
Hearing that out of her husband, she could feel the anguish coming off of him in waves. The sight of him shaking in loud sobs had her off the sofa, and over to the pair of them quicker than her body liked. Before anyone realised what was happening, she was holding on to him from the back while he cried.
Jackie pulled Jenny's hand from her mouth and wiped the tears off her granddaughter's face. "Swee'hear', tell me what's goin' on. Why's he actin' like that?"
Sniffing, Jenny tried to explain. "There was a war, and dad was the only survivor for a long long time. It's only been recently that we were able to save two more: A close friend, and Grammie Celeste."
"I don't understand," Jackie whispered. "War where, and why was she involved?"
Jenny looked at her. "Grams, we're in a time machine, yeah? Our people had dominion over Time itself. The war encompassed everything, especially dad's home planet. It was destroyed."
Only just now realising that Jenny was part alien, Jackie paused to look back over at the Doctor. She remembered uncle Lou from when he came back from that Falklands Conflict, and he'd never been the same since. Thinking about that, she worried over Rose being involved with someone with that kind of horror in their past, but she couldn't help feeling sorry for the man.
The Doctor couldn't help it. His mother was alive and the tears wouldn't stop. He could feel his ship's matrix caressing his mind comfortingly. Wait, that's not right. His breath was stuck in chuffing hiccups, and he realised that mental embrace was coming from Rose. Becoming aware of his surroundings again, he relaxed his grip on his mother and felt Rose hugging him from behind.
Wiping his face, he stood up straight and looked over his shoulder. "Wha?"
Celeste rubbed his cheek and stepped back. "Son, may I introduce you to your wife?"
Looking down a bit, Rose's cheeks were just as wet as his were. "You … How?"
"Hello," Rose said quietly with a watery smile, not letting go of him. "Uhm, surprise?"
"You," he stuttered. "You're mind. I," he swallowed as she wiped his eyes. "How is this possible?" he rasped.
Swallowing herself, Rose bit her lip. "Where are you now? When?"
"I lied and said I was doing a calibration run around Pluto."
A half giggle breathed out of her. "Five days. It's only been five days for you. Oh my God." Blinking, she pushed his coat apart and hugged him from inside it. "Ohhh, this is too much, yeah? I'm sorry."
Standing there, the Doctor was completely gobsmacked. Didn't stop him from returning the hug though, and he put his face in her hair. Her scent flooded his nose, and the sigh that came out of him surprised her. "I lied," he whispered.
"'Bout what?" she mumbled into his jumper.
"That 'for a human' bit was a dodge. Didn't realize I was talkin' till my mouth closed."
Rose giggled. "Love doin' that to ya," she said quietly, then her head popped back to look at him. "Hold on. That was day two. You felt it then?"
His face was sheepish. "Yeah," he grinned.
She smiled wide. "Good." Reaching up with her left hand, she pulled him down and snogged him.
Feeling something nudging his lower stomach, the Doctor felt down to her waist. His brow arched when he felt the bump of her pregnancy. "Mine?" he thought to her, still reeling that he could do that and have her hear him.
"Yeah," she answered drunkenly in his head, while her tongue was doing lazy circles in his mouth.
"How?" he asked. "I'm supposed to be sterile."
"Tell you later," she complained. "Now shut it and kiss me dammit!" Once he focussed on what he was doing, Rose melted completely and relied on him to keep her standing.
"I should put a stop to this," Jackie mumbled.
Jenny glared at her. "You do, and I'll slap you into next Thursday," she growled. "Leave them alone. How would you feel if your parents disrupted you and Granddad?"
"He's dead, so it doesn't matter," she snapped.
Jenny got a hold of her jaw and forced her to look her in the eye. "The reason we're here, is because you are in a parallel world in our present, married to Granddad's counterpart, with uncle Tony and aunt Laura. You keep this up, and I'll wipe your mind of this whole event right now. I don't care if your my grandmother or not. Leave. Them. Alone."
Blinking at that and not completely understanding anything she said, Jackie looked back over to her daughter, and saw Celeste scowling at her. Frowning and not liking it, Jackie clamped her mouth shut.
"I don't think your mum likes me," the Doctor said, causing Rose to giggle in his mind.
"She got over it. Gave her blessing years ago."
"You stay with me that long?"
"We're bound. I wanted forever; meant it; and made it happen. Relax, would you?" Dear God, Rose thought to herself, I want him screaming for God and mean me.
The Doctor broke the kiss finally, a bit shocked. "I heard that," he whispered. "Had the same thought about you once or twice."
"More than a couple, I imagine," Rose said, blushing scarlet through her smile.
"You could say that," he grinned.
Toeing the floor, Rose twisted and bit her lip with her head tilted to the side. "Want to meet your daughter?" she asked quietly.
He glanced down at her stomach, then back up to her in surprise. Looking over his shoulder, he saw that girl sitting next to a very peeved Jackie.
Jenny grinned and waved a finger at him. "Hi dad."
Blinking, the Doctor gave the room the once over. His mother was alive, he was apparently married to Rose, and their daughter was being cheeky. "I need to sit down."
After getting him on the couch, Jackie couldn't hold it in any longer. "You're too old for her!"
He gave her a dry look. "I'm too old for anyone on the planet. Now is that what your problem is, or is this about me turning you down?"
Rose gaped at her. "You hit on my husband?"
"He wasn't at the time!" Jackie complained. "You're still to old for her."
"Jackie, I'm well over a thousand years old. Just whom do you think I should dance with?" he snarked.
Baulking at him, Jackie looked at Celeste, who nodded. "And I'm way older than that, my dear. After so long, it doesn't pay to keep track of it."
"So, what. You gonna watch my daughter grow old?" Jackie half shouted.
"Not so much, no," Rose snapped. "The reason I feel so cold to you, is because I'm like him."
"Don't be stupid," Jackie said in disgust.
"Would you like to check my heart?" Rose asked, pointing to the right side of her chest. "Or, would you rather check the other one?" she snarked while pointing at the left side of her chest.
The Doctor's head snapped to look at her in shock. "How did that happen?"
Pausing, Rose looked at Celeste. "How much can I tell him? Can you fix him too?"
"Could do it meself," the Doctor said. "Might be better if she'd do it though. I'd wanna keep too much."
Nodding, Rose took a deep breath. "We were facing Daleks," she paused as he stiffened in alarm. "Yeah, sorry. But, you tricked me into the TARDIS and sent me home, expecting to die. I wasn't having it, and opened the console with mum's help. Our dear and I had a mental conference; vortex energy spun in my brain; I saved your life; ensured Jenny would be born in the future; spun my DNA into triple helices; and pretty much was damned fantastic about it."
"You should've died," the Doctor breathed in outright shock. "That much power would kill anyone."
"I helped you?" Jackie asked. "Why would I do that?"
"Because you realized that I loved him with everything I am, and the thought of him dying was killing me." Pausing to let herself calm down, she realized that some of that was false, but couldn't figure out which part. Blowing out a breath, she leaned against the Doctor. He responded by putting his arm around her. "Too much," she muttered.
"Too much." Turning her head into the Doctor's shoulder, she thought to him. "Hold me." Despite everything, Rose was deliriously happy at that moment. She had her husband, her daughter, and her mother in the same room. Sure it wasn't exactly right, but she didn't care.
"You're the same in every way that matters," Rose thought to him again. "I don't care what you look like. You're mine, and I love you."
As for the Doctor, he just sat there in awe of what was going on. Sure, Jackie was a right pill, but that didn't matter. He had a family: A real family. Not knowing what else to do, he simply ran his fingers through Rose's hair, marvelling over everything he just learned.
Still though, something glittering caught his eye. Glancing over, he saw diamond ring on Jenny's hand. "You're engaged?"