Characters: Donna/Ten, Rose, OCs
Dark_fest prompt: I loved him so much I couldn't let him live without me
Summary: Donna's job description just got more complicated.
Disclaimer: I do not own any part of these characters, although I share a few letters of their names.
A/N: the dark_fest prompt list was suggested by joelthecat, and my angst will be eternally grateful.
A/N2: writing this was a pure experiment, not helped by the fact my laptop died and I completely lost the first draft. I hope it was worth the effort.
A/N3: Please heed this WARNING! Rose lovers might want leave via the exits here... here... and here. This really isn't for you.
The Girl From Beyond
Donna stood on top of a pile of rubble, panting heavily from the exertion and finally crying with the sheer effort of just standing there. The blooded dagger in her left hand fell from her grasp and hit the bricks and mortar beneath her feet.
The taste of dust in her mouth made her spit to the side. What wouldn't she give for a proper drink of water? She was on the verge of being prepared to sell anything, even her body.
She looked down at the body that once gained her so much unwanted attention. Lifting up a stick thin arm she grimaced at the state she was currently in. Hadn't she once abused someone for being a long streak of nothing? That had seemed such a long time ago. It fact it was a whole lifetime ago; and she knew exactly who's life to measure it by.
A loud noise to her left roused her from her reflective thoughts. It startled her but she knew from experience it would cause her no harm. They were merely trying to flush people out. Too late, buster! She was already standing in an unguarded place, and all because of that stupid girl…
Except she wasn't a girl anymore; had long since passed being able to earn the label of girl. She'd also lost the label of being a real blonde, but that was by the by. The reason Donna now stood on top of the rubble was because she hated Rose Tyler with every ounce of her being.
Rose may be considered an absolute darling by someone, but it wasn't ever likely to be her. Not after everything that had happened to young Tamis. Yet again Donna bit down on the overwhelming urge to just give in and shout at the world; this world, that was no part of her official life. This was only her home by proxy. She'd earned the right to fight for this place, to gouge out a niche for herself to hide in and possess when the need presented itself. Fortunately that need had not occurred very often.
The wind suddenly picked up and blew tendrils of her hair across her face, blotting out her ability to see very far. Frantically she lifted up a hand to sweep the offending hair out of her eyes, and then she gasped.
Standing only five metres away stood Rose Tyler, looking the very picture of innocence as she changed position in order to retain her footing. Donna glared at her, unwilling to break the silence between them; knowing that to do so would make her appear weak in this woman's eyes. Not that she was aware that Rose cared about her beyond using her to gain information and reach her goal. Her goal had always been the same: to get to the Doctor.
Donna watched several emotions flit over Rose's face as she obviously warred with herself how best to ask her question. She even tried a little bit of sticking her tongue between her teeth in what was evidently a tried and tested method of getting whatever she wanted. Well it wasn't going to work on Donna Noble. If the blonde hair had no effect on her what on earth made Rose think the teeth thing would? Donna almost shook her head in wonder; but still she waited, wanting to know what this woman would decide could possibly work in order to wheedle information out of her.
Eventually Rose made her move. "Hello, Donna," she greeted her in as cheery a voice as she could muster. "Do you remember me?"
"Just about," Donna stated evenly, loathe to show any emotion apart from detached interest.
With a florid movement, Rose brought the arm she'd been holding behind her body to the fore; and Donna was completely unsurprised to see a gun in her hand. "Good. Then I won't have to introduce myself again. I think you know what I want," Rose stated.
All sorts of snippy replies flittered through Donna's mind; all of them pithy enough to amuse her without doing anything more than twist the corner of her mouth. "Do you?" she answered sarcastically instead.
A frown immediately appeared on Rose's face as she did her best impression of the Oncoming Storm. "Yes! Don't play your silly games with me, Donna. Just tell me. Where is he?" she demanded with as much menace as she could gather.
"If I did know… which I don't… why would I tell you?" Donna asked in return.
"Because I've got a fucking big gun pointing at your head, you stubborn ginger bitch!" Rose almost spat at her as she raised her gun to aim straight at the centre of Donna's head.
Well, Donna assumed that was where she was trying to aim. It was the logical place after all. The insult didn't worry her, since it wasn't the first time she had heard it, although it might be the last. She raised her hands very slightly in surrender; one of the oddities of travelling with the Doctor was that you quickly learned how to surrender whilst remaining pissed off about it. "That's true," she stated.
"What is?" Rose was very clearly confused by the answer.
So Donna carefully enunciated, "It is true that I am a stubborn ginger bitch." She then waited to see if Rose would pull the trigger out of spitefulness or if she'd try again.
Trying again won out. "Donna, do yourself a favour and tell me where he is," Rose yelled out.
"Surely I'd be doing myself a favour by not telling you, because then you'd be forced to keep me alive in case I do know," Donna argued as the wind picked up again and debris started to be thrown about. Any second now, she told herself…
Rose moved both hands to hold the gun steady and glared intently at Donna, as various possible scenarios worked their way through her mind. She cocked the trigger. "Tell me now!"
At that precise moment a large piece of broken tree branch hit Rose on the left-hand side of her back, causing her to spin in shock; and Donna dropped to her haunches in order to pick up the blade she had earlier dropped. A shot rang out and a bullet ricocheted off what remained of a once impressive brick wall. Donna used the distraction to throw the blade at Rose, catching her on her right hand; and she instantly winced with the pain.
"You got me!" she cried out in shock. "You've sliced my hand!"
"You'll heal," Donna retorted without much compassion. "The TARDIS is still good for something."
Rose gasped. "You can still hear her! Why can you do that but I can't?"
"I have no idea. Perhaps I'm the designated emergency driver," Donna drily replied. "Does it really matter?"
"What do you mean 'designated emergency driver'? Are you saying you can drive the TARDIS?" Rose stood incensed with emotion before her, holding her wounded hand close to her stomach.
"Well, d'uh!" Donna drew out the syllables. "Somebody else needs to know how to pilot her." And then she realised what this meant and she wanted to laugh loudly. His precious Rose had no idea how to pilot his beloved TARDIS! Wasn't that a turn up for the books? It was no good, she couldn't hold in her mirth at the irony of it, and she swivelled on the spot to laugh heartedly.
"It isn't funny!" Rose protested petulantly. "I need to get back to him; he needs me."
Donna quirked a disbelieving eyebrow at Rose as she stopped giggling. "Obviously," she remarked. "That's why you brought the Q'Larkons with you to rip the town apart. He needed you to kill all these people."
"It wasn't like that! They were coming here to deal with rebellious troublemakers, and they offered me a ride," Rose defended herself, fighting back her tears of frustration.
"You mean those freedom fighters we were helping out to shake off the yoke of oppression, who took us in and treated us like we were their own? Yes I bet they were trouble." Donna practically sneered at Rose and her naivety when faced with the prospect of getting back to the Doctor. She then glanced towards the smoke that still pinpointed where Tamis had been waiting, hoping he had been killed instantly rather than suffered a long and lingering death. "I'm sorry Tamis," she murmured.
"Who's Tamis?" Rose unexpectedly asked.
Donna was startled out of her thoughts. "He's our… he was our… He was just a little boy I knew," she admitted. "Gone now." No wonder the Doctor had said that nothing could replace the people he had loved and lost, that there would forever be a hole where they once resided in his hearts. She understood that clearly now, and she regretted that she had forced him to accept Jenny.
"What did he look like?" Rose astounded her by asking.
Why the hell did she care? Was this another ruse to get her to talk? Donna reluctantly held out a hand and said, "About this tall. Cheeky grin and smiling eyes."
"Sounds like he was nice," Rose replied sympathetically.
Donna answered simply, "Yes." She could feel a storm building as she contemplated her next move. "We need to seek shelter."
"I was holed up over there," Rose told her, pointing towards what looked like a pile of corrugated roofing.
"Then that's where we'll go," Donna replied; and waited for Rose to lead the way.
Donna looked up over the hilltop away from the setting sun. Her eyes squinted as she looked for evidence they were coming back. To her relief, the horizon was empty.
Crawling back down again, she smiled at her young companion. "Shall we go and get something to eat, Tamis?" she asked.
"Yes please," he replied. His stomach growled to emphasise his words. His little face twisted in concentration as he fought the inevitable question.
"I wonder what goodies we'll be able to find," she pondered. God only knew where she would find something other than dry biscuits. It hadn't occurred to her to bring anything else.
It had been a strange day. In some ways it was not out of the ordinary, but in others, it was. She didn't, for example, normally end up looking after a small boy. A big over-grown boy, yes. A small boy, no. And the strangest thing of all was that she was beginning to like this pseudo-motherhood.
"Donna!" Tamis called out in fear, and he gripped her arm tightly. "Something is happening!"
She sought to reassure him, hugging him closely. "We'll be alright; we're always alright…"
That was when the shells started landing, ripping their hidey-hole to shreds and the small boy within it, leaving her grasping at nothing more than bloody pieces of cloth.
Donna shook herself awake with a loud sob, frantically seeking out the boy who was no longer there.
"Let go of my sleeve!" yelled out Rose. "What are you playing at, you daft cow!"
"Sorry; bad dream," she excused herself, mortified to find she had grabbed Rose defensively in her sleep. She then took the bull by the horns and asked the question she'd been dying to ask. "What happens next, Rose; if you find him?"
Rose beamed with confidence back at her. "I leave with him, and we live happily ever after."
Feeling like playing devil's advocate, Donna asked, "What happens if he says no?"
"Then I shall make sure he can never say no," Rose said with determination.
Donna snorted her scorn. "What, you're going to remove the word completely from his mind?"
Rose fixed her gaze fairly and squarely on her. "No, I shall make sure he can never say another word." She hugged her retrieved gun to her chest in emphasis.
'Oh shit!' thought Donna, and tried to ease herself away from the madness. Could being thrown through the Void do such a thing to a person, even if they volunteered to do so? If she ever got the chance to ask him, she mentally put that question at the top of the list to run passed the Doctor.
It was beginning to feel like an increasingly big 'if'.
Donna knew as she sat looking at Rose's gun that, if push came to shove, she would take that bullet for him; there was no doubt in her mind. The universe couldn't do without the Doctor, but it could do without Donna Noble quite easily.
Squaring her shoulders, Donna slapped her knees as she stood up, and announced, "Come on then. Let's see if we can find him." She really hoped luck was on her side.