A/n: Hello, happy late mother's day to all! I do not have anything to say in this note so I'm going to tell you a little story, about my AP Bio exam yesterday.
So, the last essay question (there's four) was about the carbon cycle. I'm all good on that, but when it gets to the last subset letter (c), it wants me to name two ways humans contribute to high carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere. I put car exhaust for the first, then couldn't remember anything for the second. I should've put deforestation, I even thought of putting 'throwing carbon in the air!', but instead, to amuse myself, I put 'excessive breathing' because we breath out Carbon dioxide because of respiration (if anyone didn't know). Technically, that's correct. So they can't say I was wrong. Moral of the story: Creativity and B.S. can only get you so far, but it's fun to try.
To Kiss and Tell…Jack
I scanned the horizon in front of me, gripping on to the tree branch rough beneath my fingers with one hand and holding my laser gun at the ready in my other hand. I hadn't meant to upset the Zarbi chief this time. Honest. But, really, what's a girl to do when someone - even a big slightly temperamental alien man- locks her in a rain chamber and ruins her hair? (Seriously- a rain chamber? Who thought of that? It's only a punishment if the prisoner has hair that tends to frizz like a mother. Like me!)
It was meant as punishment for being caught trespassing on their lands. And you see, that is not my fault either. I was following a lead a, um…friend (whom I may or may not have stunned after the conversation's end) who told me that the Zarbi are the ones to talk if I wanted to find the Caliks 5. Normally, I'm not very interested in interplanetary cops whose idea of fun is arresting people for no reason. But you see, they'd charged me with something ridiculous that I absolutely did not do. Well, not at the time that they are accusing me of doing it. They claim that I stole Queen Krositch of Glango's prized jewels. Which I suppose isn't as ridiculous as I've lead you to believe…..but that was 5 years ago, and I gave them back!...Eventually. He made me. It's irritatingly hard to say 'no' to him when he gets that look, the one that resembles a righteously angry five year old.
Anyway, now I have to track them down and…negotiate with them before they report my supposed 'crime' to the Storm Cage guards. I'm getting out soon-finally done enough pardons- and I don't want those stupid alien thugs to ruin my chances.
Back to the Zarbi matter-not my fault. Mostly. I suppose I shouldn't have told the King that he was a 'dim-witted pig who tortures his people by enslaving them and making them look at his ugly face', but if you'd seen what I did, you would've said the same thing. Well, he didn't quite agree with me on that point so when I tried to flee he decided to send his even uglier beasty after me. Damn giant lizard followed me through the Vortex.
I heard a sudden rustling below me, a twig snapped, and I could detect faint voices getting nearer. Oh bloody hell. Some hikers are going to come through here and give away my position. I was glaring down at the direction they were coming from, when two women and a man cleared through the leaves of the shrubs below. One of the women was pale, dark hair and brown eyes that were smiling at the other two as they laughed. The other, a coffee-skinned women with a strong look on her face, was smirking at the man as he seemed to be trying to defend himself.
Said man said, "Martha, why won't you two believe me? Ianto came over to work on the case. That's all. We were trying to see if there was anything we missed. Honest!"
The man didn't even look like he believed his own tale. He had a mega watt grin and a very handsome face.
"Truly Jack, we don't buy it."
As amusing as this was, I had to roll my eyes. We'd all be dead if they didn't hush up.
"Oi! You three, zip it! May as well be screaming 'Over here lizard face!'"Lord I'm starting to sound like my mother.
All three pairs of eyes shot upwards to me, the women in the tree.
The man grinned, "Not that I don't like the view from down here, but why are you in that tree?"
"Excuse me, you can't be here. This is a closed off Torchwood crime scene."
I rolled my eyes, again, and just stared at her.
The other women spoke up, the one with skin a little darker than mine, "She's serious. You could be seriously injured; we picked up signs of two alien life forms in the area."
"Not to mention the Vortex disturbance signals…." The first women mumbled.
"You weren't supposed to mention it to civilians, Gwen."
The woman spoke with a Welsh accent as she glared at him, "Calm down, Jack."
If there was any way to slap people that were five feet away from you, I would have. I slap.
"Yes, I'm well aware of that alien life form, seeing as it followed me here and is trying to chase me down and char me to death." And the other alien lifeform happens to be me….
"I'm sorry…did you say it followed you here?" Jack raised his eyebrows and looked at me, half questioning my sanity, "From where?"
Even when dubious, he's a good at his job. I laughed. My idiot was right.
"From Zarbis. Fifth planet in the Metracolis system. Beautiful planet, just happens to have a very violent race of natives who send giant lizards after you when you call the King ugly….."
"You…called an alien King…ugly?"
"Why, yes, Gwen, what else should I do when he tortures his people and makes my hair frizz? And he does have a rather lopsided face."
The man burst out laughing, "I like you," he smirked and eyed me carefully, "So what exactly were you doing on Zarbis?"
"…..I don't see how it concerns you, but I was tracking down a lead. Need to find the Caliks 5."
"What are they Martha?"
The Martha women gasped. She looked like she'd just remembered something, "It's just….I've met the Caliks 5," she turned towards the other two, "Back when I was traveling with the Doctor, we ran into them a lot," she gave Jack a conspiring look, "Those guys probably have the Doctor for multiple counts of planetary distress, stolen artifacts, and 'causing things to accidentally blow up'."
I snorted, amused and irritated at the same time, a feeling that I've come to associate with my mad man, "Accidentally my arse; he always pretends to do it on accident, but in the end, the blowing up normally ends in his favor."
Again, all three pairs of eyes looked at me like I was a three eyed monkey. I've seen one of those, actually. That was some date.
"Wait….." Gwen started.
"You know…." Martha stared at me carefully.
"Doctor….." Jack breathed.
I sighed and rolled my eyes at their awe of my husband. Don't get me wrong, he's very impressive. He can actually scare me sometimes, when he gets that ever so old and dark look in his eyes. And he amazes me even more often. But still, I've lived with the man. I've seen him climb upside down under the console to retrieve a jammy dodger he'd dropped. I don't react to him the same way anymore. I'm not and never was one of his 'companions'.
I stared at them again. I've found that the easiest way to get people to accept something is to just be silent and let it soak in. That and I really don't feel like explaining.
"How do you know the Doctor?" Jack was the one who chose to speak, sounding reverent.
I threw in a wink. For fun. One of my favorite things to do is make awkward silences more awkward. And no, I am not sane.
I laughed at their faces ranging from horrified to confused, "Oh, come on you lot, stop gaping and hide somewhere so I can kill Old Lizard Breath. I'm not technically supposed to have been gone this long…." Stormcage only granted me two days to investigate the accusations….I've been gone four, meaning I will need to call him for a lift…a backward-in-time-kind of lift…
"For some unknown reason, I trust you to be able to kill this thing-you look deadly enough-so fine, we'll stay out of the way. But when that thing's dead you will climb down here and tell us just how you know the Doctor and just what the hell is going on," Jack's angry voice cut through my thoughts and I held back a laugh at how serious he is about the Doctor. Not that I don't find the Doctor to be worthy of that level of seriousness, it's just….I see the man, I see my husband, I don't see the legend of the Doctor that most do.
"Can do, Captain," I winked at him as I turned my head to scan the forest floor for any sign of movement. A couple seconds later I saw a rustle in the leaves out of the corner of my eye, "Gotcha," I whispered right before I shot my alpha mason laser gun-a new one by way; Theta's birthday present to me- a few feet above where I saw the leaves moves. The monster suddenly appeared out from behind the trees as it fell forward with a searing whole in the middle of it's chest. It fell to the ground with an ominous thump. I grinned at the sound and hopped down from the tree as lithely as I could in heels.
"So, would you like to take this conversation to a more appropriate, preferably air-conditioned, place or would you all just prefer to stare at this dead beasty a little more?"
"Direct hit," Martha said quietly, "You hit him straight in the heart. Great shot."
I laughed, "Thank you very much, Martha Jones, but I'm afraid that specie's heart is actually in their stomachs, not their chests." I gave her a look that hopefully conveyed to her that I wasn't trying to be rude.
She smiled back a little before she seemed to realize something, "Hold on. None of us ever said my last name. How did you know my full name?" she looked at me like she was afraid I was going to turn the gun on her. Funny how often I get that look. Not totally unwarranted though.
I smiled genuinely, "I know a lot of things about you, Mrs. Smith."
Her eyes lit up with an angry flare as the other woman, Gwen , stepped up to put a hand on her shoulder, "We should really take this back to the base, Martha."
Martha nodded, "And you will tell me how you know me."
We all seemed to agree and I noticed Jack had stayed silent, looking at me with a calculating expression on his handsome face.
We walked into the office and I spotted a man with a short, civilized hair cut and kind eyes sitting at the front desk, "Well, this is a pretty nice place you've got here. Could do with a little more color, but you know, alien catching bases and all, best not to be conspicuous I guess."
Gwen looked like she wasn't sure if she wanted to be curious or pissed off. Martha had already decided that she was cautious of me and currently-angry. Jack was still gazing at me like I was a puzzle he really wanted to solve, but was afraid of how it'd turn out ; he'd been doing that since I mentioned the Doctor actually.
"Spill," he said simply, with an impish slash cautious look in his eyes.
"Starting with how you know so much about me. Who told you my name? Who told you my husband's name?"
I grinned at her, unaffected by her mood, "Mickey Mouse. Wonderful man. Very protective, or so I'm told."
"He told you," Martha surmised wisely , nodding. She was used to the craziness by now, so she didn't hold on to her anger, she simply accepted it.
I smiled; the Doctor was right about her being sharp, "He tells me about all of you. Every single one. Although, after the first few sentences he just starts ranting about old adventures, by which time I stop listening."
They all looked at me like I sprouted another head of curly hair, "Please, don't look at me like that, you'd tune him out too."
Jack blinked, "How do you know the Doctor? You never answered that question, which was actually our first question."
Jack seemed to be getting impatient so I sighed, "If you'll remember, I did answer your question."
Jack glared at me, "Intimately. Yes I remember. I assumed you were joking or trying to freak us out."
I looked at him straight in the face, "No to the first-I do not joke about sex with my husband- and yes to the second."
It's a subject I take very seriously and put a lot of time and thought into.
"Your who now?" Jack couldn't decide if he wanted to be extremely amused, shocked, or jealous. So he settled for a strange mix of all three.
I rolled my eyes, "My husband, he-" my phone going off suddenly interrupted me.
I chuckled when I recognized the ringtone he'd set for himself; the words 'Doctor, Doctor, gimme the news, I got a bad case of loving you' blared out from my cellular, "-is currently interrupting me."
"This better be important, Theta, I was in the middle of something. Since when do you use your phone anyway? Oh, and another thing, stop changing my ringtones!"
All three onlookers stared at me in amusement and shock.
"It's cool. Admit it. The song is cool. And why can't I call you? What's wrong with calling my wife? I thought that was what you humans do…"
His voice on the other end made me smile automatically, like something warm and horribly corny had bursted inside my chest, "Oh, shut up, you great idiot, you know I'm not human. Just tell me why you called."
"Not human?" Jack burst out, ever so tactful, looking like he wanted to like my alieness, but was too cautious to.
"Was….was that…Jack? River why are you….wait, River-that's Jack! Back away. Back away from the Harkness! Do not let him flirt with you! Or touch you… or look at you…."
I had switched the phone to speaker, for my own personal amusement, after I picked up and the two women in the room burst into a fit of side-holding laughter as Jack raised his eyebrows and looked offended, "Hey! I'm not that bad..." he gave me a sideways glance, looking me over head to toe, "Actually, on second thought…." He grinned as he took a step closer to me.
"You're on speaker, Sweetie."
I saw Jack and Martha look towards each other and mouth 'Sweetie?' like I'd just said something incomprehensible.
"Yes, I surmised that, Dear! Now, you, Harkness! Back away from my wife!"
"Wait, so she was telling the truth?" I feared if Martha raised her eyebrows any higher, they'd jump off her face.
"Well, not usually."
"If I could slap you, Theta, I would."
"Oh, I know."
"You love it."
"Not to interrupt this whole bantering thing you've got going on," Gwen cut in, her anger seemed to cause her accent to become, if possible, more Welsh, "But I for one, have no idea what's going on here and would very much like to address the whole matter of a civilian being brought into Torchwood matters. Oh and the whole Vortex disturbance thing."
I cleared my throat and nodded, getting back on track, "Right. We should sort this out-"
"Hang on, did she say 'vortex disturbance'?" Oooh, I was hoping he wouldn't notice that.
"Yeah, which is why we should really be investigatin-"
"River!" he growled over the phone, causing me to wince a little as I smirked-it was a very odd expression, "How many times have I told you not to use that blasted thing?"
"….72…but it was an emergency!"
"You could've called me."
"Well, actually Sweetie, it was rather the 'I should do it alone' type of emergency," I answered his angry tone with a -what I hoped- was a calm voice. I looked around at all the looks I was getting, ranging from Jack's jealous, yet intrigued look from Martha's deadpan to Gwen's clueless annoyance. Well this is certainly getting uncomfortable.
"And by that you mean that it was a mission you didn't want to tell me about because you knew I would disapprove."
I laughed nervously, "Spot on, Sweetie."
"As much as we are all enjoying this conversation," Jack grinned, still looking shocked and confused, "Could we please, I don't know, explain what the hell is going on. Starting with when and HOW did you get him to marry you and ending with why you were looking for the Caliks Five."
Then suddenly, an irritatingly fimilar whirring sound eminated from the corner of the room. Jack forgot his question as everyone turned towards the corner.
I groaned and muttered under my breath, "He always leaves the damn breaks on."
Then he was here. The wonderful blue box appeared, same as ever, and that ridiculous husband of mine, complete with floppy hair and bowtie, opened the door of his Sexy and leaned against the side, grinning, "Thought you might need a ride, Dear," he patted the side of the TARDIS as all eyes were glued to him.
"That WAS why I called, could of told you that if you didn't go off on one of your tangents again," I smiled at him as he walked-excuse me, strode- towards me, grin of a child on his face.
"You distracted me," he smirked, seeming to forget we weren't the only ones in this room, "Always do."
That is when he decided it was a good time to lean down and snog me. Any time is good for that actually. I'm not complaining. I smiled into the kiss as I fiddled with his bowtie.
I forced my voice to not come out as a purr, "I try, Sweetie."
A throat cleared behind us, Martha I believe. I quickly popped the bubble I had made with him and turned around, quick on my toes, "Sorry, Martha dear, you see…he does that. Forget his manners and all."
The Doctor however was not so casual; in fact, he was red, "Martha! S-sorry about that…entrance. How are you?" he beamed like a kid in a candy store…well, this IS what he looked like the ONE time I took him to a candy store.
She only blinked at him. For a minute, the room was engulfed in the most awkward silence known to man and several species of frogs…then she laughed, humorlessly, once, "Doctor…." She shook her head, "You really don't change."
He looked offronted, as he was grinning…if that's possible, "Yes, I do! Did you not notice the new face?" with that, he slapped both hands on his own cheeks, "A bit longer in the chin area than my last, but cool hair!" he gushed exuberantly, pulling on locks of light brown from his head until he realized it hurt, at which point he made a face and rubbed his head.
She grinned despite herself. I knew Theta had done some stupid things during Martha's time with him, but I had a feeling she still cared for him deeply, just in a different way, "No, Doctor," she walked up to him, "I didn't mean the face. The face isn't who you are. It never was," she finished more serious-faced than she started, but she still held a small smile on her face.
He grinned back, a more grave look in his eyes, "Thank you, Martha Jones," he gave her a quick hug before he hopped on his feet and spun around .
"Jack!" he shouted, "Knew you were here," he shook his head.
Jack walked up to him quietly, stopped a foot in front of him, looked him straight in the eye and seemed to think something over, very focused, for a moment. Then one of the biggest grins I've ever seen broke out onto his face and he winked, barely containing his laughter, "Daft old man keeps getting younger. Must say, I'm enjoying the new look," he pulled the Doctor into a bear hug that made Theta's arms flail a bit.
"Hey! I'm eleven hundred and eighty nine now, thank you very much!"
Jack raised an eyebrow, "I was referring to your face this time, Doc."
The Doctor backtracked, "Oh. Right, right. So…" he looked around, "This is Torchwood, on the inside."
"On the inside?" Gwen finally spoke, looking at the Doctor a little like he was a time-bomb, "What do you mean?"
The Doctor got that old expression on his face-the one that reminds me of a grandfather smiling upon his children, "I've been watching you all. Never interfering. Can't most times. But I have been keeping tabs. I've seen what you've done for this world when I was too busy somewhere else….and I'd like to thank you. You've done good."
Jack swallowed, getting a dark look in his eye, "It's been...hard. It was very bad at one time….Miracle Day, lives lost…." He coughed, covering up a crack in his words, "But this is our world. We've all learned Doctor that you can't always be there," he didn't look resentful at this, more that now he understood all the angry questions he used to want to ask the Doctor.
Theta only nodded, giving him a look, straight in the eye, that acknowledged him, and from the look on Jack and Martha's faces, that's all they ever wanted from him.
Some time later, we were all sitting around a wooden, black rimmed table in the Torchwood lower levels, drinking tea and scotch and talking about nothing. It was wonderful. Theta laughed at some story of Jack's about how he almost got arrested for not marrying whatever planet he was on's queen.
Theta threw an arm around my shoulders, sitting in the chair beside me.
"You never did say…how do you guys know each other?" Gwen asked, looking between the two of us.
He smiled, "I took a husband and wife aboard the TARDIS this last time. Ponds. Two of the most loyal and brave people I've ever met, and that's saying a lot. Well, as always, I put them in danger. Amy was kidnapped when she was pregnant. She didn't even know she was. Kidnapped that is. Or pregnant. Well, it's a long story, but in the end, we find Amy but her baby was taken. Trained by a religious order called the Silence. Trained to be a weapon. I found her, little Melody Pond, much later than I should have. When she was all grown up. Ponds and I were in Berlin, 1940, the eve of war. That's where we met Mels again. Long story short, that baby that I couldn't save was….River. Daughter of Ponds," he grinned stupidly, looking at me with open fondness.
"Wait so….somebody finally did it in the TARDIS-besides me when I snuck in all those girls- and from that your wife was born, and kidnapped as a baby?" Jack looked like he was trying to do calculus in his head.
"Yep," I grinned, popping the 'p'
"Wait…he said you were trained as a weapon. A weapon to do what?" Martha looked at me, sympathetic and curious.
"To kill the Doctor. I think you wanted to know how we got married, right? Well I kissed him, then killed him. Twice. And he lived. Both times."
I could only laugh at the horrified and confused faces in front of me. Strange how often I'm on the receiving end of those kinds of looks.
Martha suddenly got a shrewd look in her eyes as I was turning to go through the lovely blue doors of my home, "Wait…we never figured out….what was the other alien life form?"
The Doctor busted out laughing, chuckling so hard he had to hold his sides as his cheeks turned red, "Oh, Martha," he sighed and looked over at me conspiringly, then smirked, "Haven't you figured that out yet?"
Martha's mouth fell open and Jack's eyes grew wide.
He gasped as his eyes lit up, "You…?" he looked like the wrapping of the Christmas present he'd been trying to see through for days had just been ripped off.
I only smirked wider, "So that's how you got him to-"
I cut him off, laughing to myself, "Oh, no, Jack. I didn't get him to marry me by telling him I was Gallifreyan. He married me for my humanity….you know better than anyone, Jack-the Doctor has always been in love with the human race."
A/n: So this took longer than it should have, and it's still not as good as I wanted it to be. Anyway, still review! I love you all. Mwah! (That's me throwing air kisses. Yes, weird, I know) –Pixie 3
Oh and I thought you might enjoy this. Outtake with the Doctor and River:
"I haven't been caught for a crime in 5 years."
"What crime was that?"
"…..fornicating…in public," smirk, "Actually, that one was his idea. Sort of."
"It wasn't my IDEA-you coerced me….very pleasantly."