A/N: Sorry, have to put this first, so excited, September 1st! Series 7 starts! Yay!
"Doctor?" Jack asked, "Did you Lin..."
"No," the Doctor answered, looking down at Evy as she struggled to hold off the regeneration as long as possible, "But it doesn't matter, Linked or not, we're compatible…completely compatible…regeneration energy and all…" his eyes started to widen, "Compatible? Compatible! Jack! The hand!"
Jack ran over and picked up the hand, setting it down where the Doctor was pointing, just by Evy's head. As soon as he stepped back, Evy twisted over on her side, reaching out and slamming her hand onto the top of the container, pushing all the regeneration energy out of her and into it.
Moments later the golden-orange energy died down, leaving her heaving and slumped over from the exertion. Jack knelt at her side, the Doctor having backed up, "You ok Eves?"
She took a few deep breaths and nodded, pushing herself to sit up a bit more, "Fine."
"Evy…" Jack began, quietly.
Evy frowned at the concerned tone in his voice and looked up at him, only to see him looking down at her Filter. She looked down as well, her eyes widening in horror as she saw it was completely destroyed. Her eyes snapped up at the Doctor who was staring at her with a curious expression on his face.
Gwen and Ianto shot at the Daleks, raging, but then they noticed something strange and stopped. They walked forward, cautiously, to see their bullets hanging in the air, stopped by an invisible wall and stuck there. Gwen reached out slowly to touch it, but couldn't as her finger made a ripple in the air.
"What the hell..." she gasped
"You're the same!" Donna shouted, rushing forward and hugging Evy to her before the woman could get a word in to the Doctor.
"Um…used the regeneration energy to heal myself," Evy mumbled, her eyes still on the Doctor. She was blocking her thoughts and so was he apparently, "As soon as I was fine, I siphoned the rest of it into a bio-compatible receptacle, the Doctor's hand," she smiled softly at Donna, "I'm still me."
She glanced back at the Doctor, he had closed his eyes and she knew, from experience, he was trying to sort through her rampant memories. The smile on his face...she recognized it as well, he was feeling the connection, the power of it, the overwhelming sense of being that completely connected to another person. She looked over at Rose who was staring straight at her in shock of her being a Time Lady.
She looked down, frowning, this was what she was trying to avoid.
Gwen and Ianto were working on the computer, trying to figure out what stopped the bullets and the Daleks.
Ianto clicked on a small icon of an hourglass and suddenly Evy's previous face popped up. It was a video about halfway through, as though she were explaining something.
"…a time-lock," she said, "The ultimate defense program. If you get it up and running the Hub will be sealed in a time bubble, nothing can get in. But be careful, because that also means nothing can get out. Only use it as a last resort," she finished seriously, "I'm leaving you the instructions and schematics Tosh, I know you guys will be able to figure it out."
"We're trapped inside," Ianto sighed, thankful that, for now, they were safe, "It's all up to Jack now."
Evy pushed herself off the floor, stumbling a bit, but Jack caught her and steadied her. She smiled at him in thanks, when the power suddenly cut out.
The Doctor and Evy immediately turned to the console, flipping switches and buttons, trying to figure out what had happened, "They've got us," Evy breathed in shock.
"Power's gone..." the Doctor mumbled, "Some kind of…"
"Chronon loop!" they shouted together.
Then there was a crash, throwing them all to the side violently. Evy and the Doctor managed to hold on just enough to see that they were being pulled towards a Dalek ship on the monitor.
"There's a massive Dalek ship at the center of the planets," Jack commented, pulling himself up as well, "They're calling it the Crucible. Guess that's our destination."
"You said these planets were like an engine," Donna said, looking at the Doctor who was staring across the console at Evy, who was trying her best to avoid looking at him, "But what for?"
The Doctor frowned a moment before he suddenly spun to face Rose, "Rose!" Rose looked up, startled, this was the first time the Doctor had spoken to her since she found him, "You've been in a parallel world, that world's running ahead of this Universe, you've seen the future, what was it?"
She frowned, that was not what she was hoping his first words to her would be, "It's the darkness."
"The stars were going out," Donna nodded, remembering what the other Evy had said, what she had seen in the alternate world.
"One by one. We looked up at the sky and they were just dying. Basically, we've been building this um...this travel machine, this...uh...Dimension Cannon, so I could...well, so I could..." she trailed off, looking down. She couldn't look at him, at the Doctor, standing there, staring at her with his gaze just...missing...something.
"What?" he asked, raising an eyebrow at her hesitation.
"So I could come back!" she shouted as though it should be obvious.
The Doctor just looked at her blankly for a moment before nodding his head slowly in understanding, many of his companions looked towards a day when they might travel with him again.
"Anyway…" she looked away, frowning, "Suddenly, it started to work. And the dimensions started to collapse. Not just in our world, not just in yours, but the whole of reality, even the Void was dead. Something is...destroying everything."
"In that parallel world..." Donna began, thinking on something, trying to remember it, "...you said something about me."
"The Dimension Cannon could measure timelines, and it's...it's weird, Donna," Rose said, smiling softly at the woman, "But they all seem to converge on you."
"But why me? I mean...what have I ever done? I'm a temp from Chiswick!"
"You're amazing," Evy called, drawing her attention back to the Time Lady, "I told you, you are special Super Temp," she smiled softly at Donna, earning a smile in return. She would get Donna to believe that if it were the last thing she did, even if it meant having to make the ginger an entire super hero outfit instead of just a cape.
The computer beeped and Evy looked back over at it, "The Dalek Crucible."
The Doctor walked around the console, about to lean over Evy's shoulder when she stepped back to give him space, "All aboard..." he mumbled, his hearts breaking at how she kept pulling away from him. Her thoughts were guarded, as were his, he couldn't tell just why she was doing it.
"Brace yourselves!" Jack shouted as the TARDIS landed with a mighty crash.
"The TARDIS is secured!" they could hear a Dalek shout from outside the doors. Evy tensed, still not having the best reaction to Daleks. The Doctor moved to take her hand, but she turned away, looking back at the console. He frowned, something that didn't go unnoticed by any in the room.
"Doctor!" another Dalek called, "You and the Time Lady will step forth or die!"
"We'll have to go out," the Doctor said, glancing at Evy, pain clearly evident in his eyes at her less than favorable reactions to him, "'Cos if we don't, they'll get in."
"You told me nothing could get through those doors!" Rose turned to him, alarmed and more than a bit hurt that he seemed to be focusing so much on the woman and no one else.
"You've got extrapolator shielding," Jack agreed.
"The last time you three faced the Daleks, they were mad, hybrid, scavengers," Evy said, not looking at anyone in the room, "But this...this is a fully fledged Dalek Empire...it's at the height of its power, experts in fighting TARDISes, those things out there...they can do anything."
Rose gasped with fear as Jack stiffened.
"Right now, that wooden door..." the Doctor looked over at it, "Is just wood."
Evy frowned a moment when she realized Donna hadn't said anything. She looked up to see Donna looking down, a distant look on her face. She stepped over to the woman, putting a hand on her shoulder, shaking her out of her thoughts.
"What about your Dimension Jump?" Jack tried.
"It needs another twenty minutes, and anyway, I'm not leaving," Rose declared.
"What about your teleport?" the Doctor turned to Jack.
"Went down with the power loss," Jack replied.
"Ok, so," Evy nodded, "All of us together then..." she looked over at Donna who was drifting again, "Donna?"
But the red haired woman made no move to show she'd heard Evy. Evy frowned and focused on the woman, concentrating on reading her mind. Moments later a faint heartbeat filtered through her mind.
"Donna," she said a bit more firmly, giving her a little shake.
"Yeah," Donna looked over at her.
"I'm sorry," the Doctor said, drawing their attention to him, but his gaze was focused on Evy who, for the first time since her near death, kept his gaze, "There's nothing else we can do."
She nodded, "I know."
The Doctor stared at her one moment longer, nodding and mouthing 'ok' before turning to the door.
"Surrender, Doctor, and face your Dalek masters," the Supreme Dalek shouted.
"Crucible on maximum alert!" another Dalek reported.
The Doctor took a breath before slowly opening the door to the TARDIS.
"Daleks," Rose laughed nervously, staring at them, "Heh!"
"Oh, God!" Jack groaned.
They both laughed tensely, watching the Doctor face the Daleks as though he were absolutely certain that he would figure something out.
"It's been good, though, hasn't it?" he glanced back to ask them. Donna smiled, "All of us...all of it...everything we did..." he looked over at Donna, "You were brilliant," he turned to Jack, "And you were brilliant," and then to Rose, "And you were brilliant," and then to Evy, "And you…" he couldn't seem to muster the words to describe it, but Evy seemed to know despite the fact his thoughts were still guarded.
"You as well," she smiled at him as Rose's smile slowly faded into a sad one watching the looks on their faces, she could tell, even from those looks, this Evy woman wasn't just a Time Lady, not to the Doctor.
"Blimey," he breathed before turning to the door, resigned, and walking out.
"Daleks reign supreme!" the Supreme Dalek called as the Doctor stepped out followed by Rose and Jack, "All hail the Daleks!"
"You ready?" Evy asked Donna quietly. The ginger nodded and began to walk towards the door, just making it a few feet before she slowed, the heartbeat back, "Donna?"
"Daleks reign supreme!" the Daleks called, "All hail the Daleks! Daleks reign supreme! All hail the Daleks!"
Evy looked up to see a huge ship just outside the doors of the TARDIS, the air thick with Daleks chanting.
"Behold, Doctor," the Supreme Dalek began, "Behold the might of the true Dalek Race."
Evy's attention was drawn away from the Daleks by Donna who had turned around to stare back at the console, confused, "Donna what is it?"
"I dunno," Donna breathed, shaking her head.
The Doctor squared his shoulders, ready to face anything with Evy at his side…he turned around to see her and Donna still inside the TARDIS, "Donna? Evy? It's no safer in there…"
"Come on," Evy said gently, nudging Donna.
Donna shook herself and gave her friend a smile before turning back to the door with her…just as it slammed shut.
The Doctor spun around at the sound of a slam to see the TARDIS shut with Evy and Donna still inside. He dashed back to it as banging came from inside.
"Doctor?" Evy shouted, banging on the door as Donna rattled the handle, "What've you done?"
"It wasn't me, I didn't do anything!" he called back to them, banging on the door as well.
"Oi!" Donna yelled, "Oi, I'm not staying behind!"
"What did you do?" he demanded, spinning around to face the Supreme Dalek, his face set in a furious glare. All he knew, all he could feel, was that his Link was trapped inside the TARDIS and, right now, in the TARDIS was not a safe place to be. He was not very happy.
"This is not of Dalek origin," the Supreme Dalek remarked.
"Doctor!" Evy shouted, pulling the Doctor's attention back to the door. He looked at it, his expression morphing to desperate concern before turning to the Dalek.
"Stop it!" he shouted, "That's my friend and my Link in there. Now, open the door and let them out!"
"This is Time Lord treachery!" the Supreme Dalek replied.
"Me? The door just closed on its own!"
"Nevertheless, the TARDIS is a weapon and it will be destroyed," the Supreme Dalek said just before a hole opened in the floor and the TARDIS fell through it.
"NO!" he shouted, about to lunge down it had Jack not grabbed a hold of him and pulled him back.
He could only watch in horror as the TARDIS fell away, taking Donna and Evy with it.
Evy and Donna were thrown to the side as the TARDIS fell, jostling about as it spun and flipped.
"Let me go!" the Doctor struggled in Jack's grip, desperate to get to Evy. He turned to face the Dalek, "What're you doing? Bring it back!"
Evy grabbed onto the railing, holding it for dear life as she grabbed Donna and pulled her to the railing as well.
"Doctor!" Donna called, as though he could still hear them.
"What've you done?!" the Doctor asked, panicking, as the TARDIS fell out of sight, "Where's it going?"
"The Crucible has a heart of Z-Neutrino Energy," the Supreme Dalek replied, "The TARDIS will be deposited into the core."
"But you can't!" he shouted in horror, his breath hitching as his mind realized just what had been said…the TARDIS was about to be destroyed, with Evy inside it, "You've taken the defenses down! It'll be torn apart!"
Evy and Donna were thrown into the wall as the TARDIS crashed into something. Immediately the lights on the console began to smash and fires began to spring out all around them. Donna screamed as Evy looked around in horror.
"But Donna's still in there!" Rose shouted, advancing on the Dalek.
"Evy too!" Jack glared at him, "Let them go!"
"Get down!" Evy shouted, pushing Donna over to the console and trying her best to shield her friend and herself from the small explosions and sparks flying around them.
"The females and the TARDIS will perish together!" the Supreme Dalek replied, "Observe," a holographic screen appeared above them, the Doctor approaching it with fear and dread as he watched the TARDIS bobbing in the core energy, "The last children of Gallifrey are powerless."
The Doctor felt like he could barely breathe as he watched the TARDIS fight to remain whole, to protect the precious cargo she carried within her.
Sparks were flying everywhere, glass smashed all around them, the smoke filling the room was choking the two women who fought desperately to get steady enough to do something.
Tears were forming in the Doctor's eyes. He couldn't feel Evy, she was blocking her feelings, something Time Lords only did when there was something they didn't want their Link to feel as well…like impending death. It happend often during the war, Linked pairs would keep their feelings buried if they were in danger of dying so as not to distract their Link in the middle of battle. Once they died, of course, it was the end for the other Link, but till then, every second counted.
"Please," he turned to the Supreme Dalek, desperation in his voice which cracked with emotion, "I'm begging you, I'll do anything!" he looked back at the screen and swallowed hard, "Put me in her place," he said softly, meaning every word. He would do anything for Evy, to save her, even if it meant giving himself up, "You can do anything to me, I don't care, just get her out of there!"
Rose frowned just a bit…the Doctor had stopped referring to the two women in the TARDIS and she could feel it in her bones, the her he was talking about was Evy.
Evy managed to pull herself to her feet just enough to grab onto the console, trying to get some sort of instruction keyed in to get them out of there, but it would take two people at least to work that as quickly as she needed and Donna was in no state. She glanced down at the ginger to see her on her hands and knees beside the console, coughing and panting from the smoke. She was about to drop to her knees beside the woman when something caught her attention.
The hand was glowing, even more so than when she'd put her regeneration energy in it…and Donna was staring right at it. Her eyes widened in horror as she saw Donna reach out towards the jar. Her mind immediately realized what would happen if Donna touched it, two-way biological meta-crisis could be damaging, even deadly, for those not of the species of the main biology.
"Donna no!" Evy shouted but it was too late, Donna had touched the jar. The orange-gold regeneration energy began to swirl out of the jar and towards Donna, engulfing her. Evy dropped to her knees and grabbed Donna's hand that was on the jar. She scrunched her eyes closed and focused as much as she could on pulling as much of the Time Lord biological energy back into herself. If Donna got the wrong part of her or the Doctor it could mean death for her favorite ginger, and she was not about to let Donna die for her.
It was painful to say the least, to pull all the leftover energy back into herself, but she would do it for Donna.
The jar smashed.
The Doctor grit his teeth, watching as the TARDIS continued to struggle, he could the distress of the box through the psychic connection shared with the pilot. His breathing became deep and labored as he trembled, watching, praying that Evy would find a way to get her and Donna out.
"You are connected to the TARDIS," the Supreme Dalek said, "Now, feel it die."
A sweat began to break out on his forehead as he could feel the strain on the Link. Evy was in terrible danger and pain.
"Donna!" Evy called as Donna fell back onto the floor of the TARDIS. She scrambled to her friend's side and reached out to her, helping her sit up. Donna looked strangely calm even though the TARDIS was still being destroyed around them.
"What is that?" Donna breathed.
Evy looked over her shoulder to see the hand lying on the floor, the fingers twitching. They both watched in awe as the energy spread around the hand outwards and into the shape of a man. As soon as the energy had formed fully it jolted up into a sitting position, shaking off the energy as it went to reveal the Doctor! Evy almost laughed, not exactly the Doctor, but close.
The new Doctor stared at them, eyes wide.
"It's you!" Donna exclaimed.
"Oh, yes," the New Doctor agreed.
Donna glanced down at him and then looked away quickly. The New Doctor gave them a confused look, "You're naked," Evy said, this time she did laugh.
"Oh, yes," he agreed again.
"Total TARDIS destruction in ten rels!" a Dalek announced.
The Doctor paled considerably, his eyes focused on the screen, unwilling to believe that he might lose both his TARDIS and his Link in just ten seconds, and be completely powerless to stop it.
Rose stepped forward reaching out to take the Doctor's hand, but his hands curled into fists, shaking with rage, not even noticing her. She flinched at the rejection of her comfort but stood by him nonetheless.
"Nine!" the Daleks counted down, "Eight! Seven! Six! Five!"
"A little help!" Evy shouted to the New Doctor as she pulled herself back to the console, standing on the other side and beginning the instructions for teleportation.
The New Doctor reached out and pushed a button on the console near him, his teeth gritted and eyes wild. He pulled himself up and began to help her pilot the TARDIS.
"Four! Three! Two! One!"
The Doctor fell to the ground as the TARDIS faded away. It was gone…everything was gone…Evy was gone…
"The TARDIS has been destroyed along with your Link," the Supreme Dalek noted, "Now, tell me, Doctor...what do you feel?"
He felt numb, closing himself off, trying to block the emotions, the pain, he knew was coming and not all stemming from the Link. He felt worthless. How much of a Doctor could he be if he couldn't save the one person who meant the Universe to him? He felt empty. Void. He felt like there wasn't anything left for him anymore…without Evy…he just…it hurt. It hurt so much...
"Anger?" the Supreme Dalek asked, "Sorrow? Despair?"
Not so much. But the more he thought about it. Yes. He did feel that. Anger at the Daleks. Sorrow for the loss of Evy. And despair at the prospect of a life he knew he couldn't live without her. He could feel the despair consuming him. Whenever he was melancholy, just Evy's smile would brighten him up. But now…
"Yeah," he whispered brokenly.
Rose knelt down next to him, putting an arm around him, but he made no move to show he even knew she was still there, so lost in his own thoughts.
"Then, if emotions are so important, surely we have enhanced you," the Supreme Dalek suggested.
"Yeah?" Jack glared at the Dalek, unlike the Doctor, who he could see was now a broken shell of a man, he was full of rage, "Feel this!" he turned and shot the Supreme Dalek, the blast bouncing off him.
"Exterminate!" the Supreme Dalek shouted, sending a shot at Jack. He screamed and fell to the floor, dead.
The Doctor didn't even flinch.
"Jack!" Rose shouted, turning and scrambling to his side, "Oh, my God, oh, no…"
The Doctor didn't even look over, his eyes still focused on the screen of the energy.
"They killed him…" Rose whispered, checking him.
"Escort them to the Vault," the Supreme Dalek ordered, "They are the playthings of Davros now."
The Daleks moved, nudging Rose away from Jack. The Doctor didn't even struggle as they moved him out of the room, if he was going to be killed, all the better. He didn't look back, not even as Jack awoke with a gasp.
As Evy worked on raising the TARDIS's psychic shields to keep them undetected from the Daleks, the New Doctor, wearing a blue suit with a red top, was just finishing up fixing the TARDIS door, jumping off the railing and pulling on his jacket, "All repaired! Lovely. Shh! No one knows we're here. Gotta keep quiet," Evy looked up, amused, as the New Doctor walked around the console, Donna following him. He must have picked up more traits from Donna than she originally thought, he was far too hyper, "Silent running, like on submarines when they can't even drop a spanner. Don't drop a spanner," he turned suddenly to face them, "I like blue, what do you think?"
"You. Are. Bonkers!" Donna stated.
"I second that," Evy grinned, leaning against the console to watch them.
"Why?" he frowned, "What's wrong with blue?"
"Is that what Time Lords do?" Donna asked, looking between them, "Lop a bit off, grow another one? You're like worms!"
"No, no, no, no, no, I'm unique. Never been another like me! Because all Evy's regeneration energy went into the hand, look at my hand, I love that hand..." he grinned, wiggling his fingers, "But then you touched it…WHAM!" Donna jumped, about to scream, "Shh...instantaneous biological meta-crisis. I grew...out of you," he looked her over, "Still, could be worse."
"Oi!" Donna called, "Watch it, spaceman."
"Oi!" he matched her, "Watch it, Earthgirl."
And then he realized what he had done, "Oh…"
They stared at each other as Evy doubled over in laughter at the console, they were both staring at each other with identical 'oh' looks on their faces, it was hysterical.
"I sound like you!" the New Doctor stared at Donna, "I sound all...all sort of, rough."
"Oi!" Donna glared.
"Spanners, shh!" he warned her. Donna pursed her lips, glaring at him more intensely, "Must've picked up a bit of your voice, that's all. Is it? Did I? No. Oh!"
"Oh my God," Evy gasped as she actually fell to the floor with laughter.
"You are kidding me," the New Doctor said a moment later, his eyes wide in shock, "No WAY. One heart..." he felt his chest, "I've got one heart! This body...has got only one heart!"
"What?" Donna asked, completely gob-smacked, placing a hand on his chest as well, "What, like...you're human?"
"Oh, that's disgusting," he grimaced.
"Oi!" Donna shouted, offended.
"Oi!" he mimicked.
"Stop it!" she stamped her foot.
"No, wait, I'm..." he trailed, still not believing it.
"Part Time Lord, part Human," Evy answered, gathering herself again, they looked at her, "Biological meta-crisis," she looked at the New Doctor, "The hand was touched by a human, therefore, human DNA mixed with Time Lord DNA and we get you."
"Well, isn't that wizard?" he said in thought, smiling.
Evy rolled her eyes and pulled herself back up. Donna looked between them startled, they weren't bickering like the Doctor and Evy usually did, it was more a playful banter, almost sibling-like.
She shook her head, "I kept hearing that noise…"
"A heartbeat," Evy answered.
"Oh, that was me," the New Doctor agreed, a bit distracted still, "My single heart…" he shook his head and walked over to join Evy at the console, "'Cos I'm a…complicated event in time and space, must've rippled back. Converging on you."
"But why me?" Donna frowned.
"Because you're special, because you're brilliant, because you're amazing," Evy shook her head at the woman, "I keep telling you that."
"And I keep telling you I'm not."
"No, but you are," the New Doctor agreed, "You..." he paused, realizing something, "Oh...you really don't believe that, do you?" he frowned, "I can see, Donna...what you're thinking. All that attitude, all that lip, 'cos all this time...you think you're not worth it."
"Shouting at the world 'cos no one's listening. Well...why should they?"
"Doctor," Evy said gently, but firmly, he looked at her, "Stop it," he frowned, sad by what he'd said, but Evy turned to Donna and walked over to her, taking her hands in her own, "Just look at what you did Donna..." she said, smiling proudly at the woman, "Him?" she nodded back at the New Doctor, "No, it's more than just that, it's like..." she smiled wider, realizing something as well, "We were always heading for this. Remember, you came to the TARDIS..."
"And you found me again," the New Doctor added, thinking about all the signs as well, "Your granddad…your car…Donna, your car! You parked your car right where the TARDIS was gonna land, that's not coincidence at all!" Donna looked at Evy in question, she never could understand the Doctor's thought process.
"Wait for it," Evy grinned.
The New Doctor spun on the spot, his fingers at his temple, "We've been blind! Something's been drawing us together for such a long time."
"But you're talking like...destiny," Donna breathed, "But there's no such thing...is there?"
"It's not finished yet," Evy said, confirming that there was, in fact, destiny, "Whatever is meant to happen...it's not complete. There are still things that have to fall in place."
"But heading for what?" Donna asked, starting to follow along.
"Activate the holding cells," Davros commanded as spotlights of energy appeared over the Doctor and Rose. Rose kept glancing at the Doctor who had yet to look up from the ground. She was starting to get extremely worried about his lack of response to anything.
He didn't even move as Davros wheeled over to him, "Excellent. Even when powerless and broken, a Time Lord is best contained."
"Still scared of me then?" he asked, looking up finally, but his words were not as confident as usual, it sounded almost tired, drained, hopeless. He reached out and pressed his palm against the light, but it rippled with a blue light.
"It is time we talked, Doctor, after so very long…"
Suddenly something in the Doctor snapped and he glared at the Dalek creator, "No. We're not doing the nostalgia tour. I want to know what's happening right here, right now, 'cos the Supreme Dalek said 'vault,' yeah?" the more he could learn about where he was the better, he was going to make sure each and every Dalek was destroyed before the day was out.
They killed Evy, he'd kill them or die trying.
He was blocking everything out so he could survive long enough to do just that, "As in, dungeon. Cellar. Prison. You're not in charge of the Daleks, are you? They've got you locked away down here in the basement, like, what, a servant? Slave? Court jester?"
Rose looked up, startled, she could tell he was trying to bait Davros.
"We have...an arrangement," Davros replied.
The Doctor laughed mockingly, a small tinge of hysteria lining the sound, "No, no, no, no, no, no, no. I've got the word. You're the Dalek's pet!"
"Doctor!" Rose shouted, the last thing she wanted was for him to get exterminated.
Unfortunately her outburst drew Davros's attention to her. He wheeled over to face her, "So very full of fire, is he not? And to think, you crossed entire Universes, striding parallel to parallel to find him again, only to find him in the arms of another…how does that feel? It shouldn't matter, she's gone after all…"
"Leave her out of this," the Doctor spat in cold anger. He would be damned if he let Davros even speak of Evy.
"But this one," Davros ignored him, "She is mine. To do as I please."
"Then why am I still alive?" Rose demanded.
She was hurt to realize the Doctor hadn't just been speaking of her, telling Davros to leave her alone, but to not mention Evy. What had happened? She couldn't have been gone so long that he'd already moved on! Not after she'd tried so hard, worked so long, focused everything, all that time, on getting back to him.
"You must be here. It was foretold. Even the Supreme Dalek would not dare to contradict the prophesies of Dalek Caan."
He pressed a button on his control panel and a light turned on behind him, revealing Dalek Caan, sitting on a platform, "So cold and dark," he sang, "Fire is coming...the endless flames..."
"What is that thing?" Rose asked the Doctor, but he was glaring so forcefully at Davros still.
"The last of the Cult of Skaro," Davros answered instead, "He flew into the Time War, unprotected, but did more than that. He saw Time. Its infinite complexity and majesty raging through his mind. And...he saw you. Both of you."
Rose glanced at the Doctor.
"This I have foreseen in the wild and the wind," Caan shouted, "The Doctor will be here, as witness, at the end of everything. To the end of his world. The Doctor and his precious Children of Time!" he giggled, "And one of them will die!"
The Doctor's hands tightened into fists, a Child of Time had already died. He turned to face Caan, barely able to hold back his rage, "Was it you, Caan? Did you kill Evy? Why did the TARDIS door close? Tell me!"
"Oh, that's it," Davros exclaimed, delight in his words, "The end, the fire, the rage of a Time Lord who butchered millions only for them to take revenge and murder the only one you hold so dear," the Doctor closed his eyes.
Rose swallowed hard, she may not be a super-intelligent alien, but she could work it out. Davros seemed fond of gloating about it, to get to her, as he did of gloating of what he'd done to anger the Doctor. Evy...the Doctor loved her. But how? Why? He knew how she felt about him, she'd told him on the beach! How could he just...he was going to say it too, she knew he was. So what if he loved this Evy woman, he loved her too, he'd loved her longer, and even with their parting he had to love her still...he had to.
"There he is," Davros laughed, "Why so shy? Show your companion...show her your true self…as you did for the Child of Gallifrey…" he smirked, "See what that has led to?" the Doctor flinched, "Dalek Caan has promised me that, too."
"I have seen it," Caan trilled, "At the time of ending, the Doctor's soul will be revealed."
"What does that mean?" Rose asked him, but he didn't answer. She frowned as she saw his shoulders heaving, as though he were trying and failing to keep his emotions in check.
"We will discover it together..." Davros spoke, "Our final journey. Because the ending approaches. The testing begins."
"Testing of what?" the Doctor breathed.
"The Reality Bomb."
"Testing calibration of Reality Bomb," the Supreme Dalek announced, "Firing in ten rels, nine, eight, seven..."
"Behold...the apotheosis of my genius," Davros remarked, using his control panel to activate another holographic screen, displaying a number of people standing in the testing chamber.
"...two, one, zero…activate planetary alignment field!"
The TARDIS shuddered, throwing the group to the side. As soon as it was steady, Donna, Evy, and the New Doctor were at the monitor of the console, "It's the planets," the New Doctor said, "The 27 planets."
The Doctor's eyes widened in horror as he stared at the screen, "But that's Z-Neutrino Energy. Flattened by the alignment of the planets into a single stream. No…" he spun to face Davros, panic exuding from his entire being, "Davros. Davros, you can't! You CAN'T! NO!"
He'd lost Evy, he couldn't lose anyone else.
"Ah!" Evy winced, rubbing her head.
"What is it?" Donna asked, concerned.
"It's the Doctor…something's wrong," she mumbled. She was trying to get through to him, trying to get to his mind which he'd blocked off as heavily as he could, to make him see she was still alive. She could feel everything he was feeling, the despair, the panic, the hopelessness. It was crushing. But he was a stubborn ass most of the time, she really needed to focus everything she had just to break through his mental barriers and call out to him.
"Single-stream Z-Neutrinos compressed into..." the New Doctor mumbled as he stared at the screen, oblivious to the women. He faltered when he realized what was about to happen, "No. No way..."
The girls looked up as a bright flash of light emitted from the screen, "What is it?" Donna asked, rushing over, "Doctor? What did it do?"
The New Doctor couldn't speak, completely shocked by the lengths the Daleks were going to.
"Reality bomb," Evy mumbled, "It destroys everything, literally makes it all fall apart."
Donna gasped in shock.
"Doctor?" Rose asked, terribly shaken by what they'd just seen, a group of people disintegrate in golden energy, "What happened?"
But the Doctor could do nothing but stare at the screen.
"Electrical energy, Miss Tyler," Davros explained, "Every atom in existence is bound by an electrical field. The Reality Bomb cancels it out, structure falls apart. That test was focused on the prisoners alone. Full transmission will dissolve every form of matter."
"The stars are going out..."
"The 27 planets..." the Doctor said quietly, "They become one vast transmitter. Blasting that wavelength..."
"Across the entire Universe," Davros agreed, "Never stopping. Never faltering. Never fading. People and planets and stars will become dust. And the dust will become atoms and the atoms will become...nothing. And the wavelength will continue, breaking through the rift at the heart of the Medusa Cascade into every dimension, every parallel, every single corner of creation," he let out a manic laugh, "This is my ultimate victory, Doctor! The destruction of reality itself!"
The New Doctor was staring at the screen, Evy leaning over his shoulder before she jumped back and began running around the TARDIS, gathering different items. She tore some apart and began to piece them together.
"So…" Donna began, watching her, "What is this thing?"
"A Z-Neutrino biological inversion catalyzer…" Evy began.
"You're making one?" the New Doctor turned to her, shocked.
"Um, yeah…" Donna trailed, "Earthgirl, remember?"
"Davros told us that he made those Daleks from himself," Evy explained, screwing a few pieces together, "That means his genetic code runs through all of the Daleks out there. If I can get a sample of the transmission that Davros has tuned himself into and lock the Crucible's power to it..."
"It destroys the Daleks?" Donna asked, eyes wide.
"Biggest backfire in history," the New Doctor grinned.
"Let's hope we don't have to use it," Evy muttered. She didn't like the idea of genocide any more than the Doctor did.
The holographic screen turned on once more, Martha appearing before them, "This message is for the Dalek Crucible. Repeat: can you hear me?"
"It begins as Dalek Caan foretold," Davros grinned.
"The Children of Time will gather...and one of them will die!" Caan laughed.
"Doctor!" Martha called as they were put through to her, "I'm sorry. I had to."
"Oh!" Davros laughed, "But the Doctor is powerless, my prisoner. State your intent."
Martha held up a black square key, "I've got the Osterhagen Key. Leave this planet and its people alone or I'll use it."
"Osterhagen what?" the Doctor frowned, he was trying to make sense of it all, but he was having a hard time focusing on anything, it was all too much, he hadn't realized just how much he'd come to rely on Evy to ground him, to keep him calm and focused, without her...it was hard just to breathe, "What's an Osterhagen Key?"
"There's a chain of 25 nuclear warheads placed in strategic points beneath the Earth's crust. If I use the key, they detonate and the Earth gets ripped apart."
That made it through.
"What?" he gaped at her, completely stunned by what she was planning, "Who invented that? Well, someone called Osterhagen, I suppose, but Martha, are you insane?"
"The Osterhagen Key is to be used if the suffering of the human race is so great, so without hope...that this becomes the final option."
"That's NEVER an option," the Doctor replied firmly.
But he knew she wouldn't listen to him…she only ever seemed to listen to Evy…
"Don't argue with me, Doctor," she snapped, "'Cos there's more than that. Now, I reckon the Daleks need these 27 planets for something, but what if it becomes 26? What happens then? Daleks? Would you risk it?"
"She's good!" Rose grinned, impressed.
The Doctor's head snapped to stare at her, his expression just as stunned as with Martha but mixed with a grim sort of disbelief. He'd felt the first stirrings of the revelation now blooming in his mind when Donna had spoken of the parallel world, of how she'd managed to fix it, of the blonde woman who had told her she had to die. Rose.
"Who's that?" Martha asked.
"My name's Rose," she answered, "Rose Tyler."
"Oh, my God..." Martha breathed, her eyes widening as she realized something, "Doctor…where's Evy?"
The Doctor looked away, back down at the ground, too overcome to speak. Martha could feel tears collecting in her eyes, his reaction said it all.
Just then, another holographic screen appeared beside Martha, this one with Jack standing there, very much alive, holding something connected to a few wires with Jackie and Mickey and Jackie and Sarah Jane standing beside him.
"Captain Jack Harkness calling all Dalek boys and girls!" Jack grinned, "Are you receiving me? Don't send in your goons or I'll set this thing off."
"He's still alive!" Rose gasped, amazed, "Oh, my God, that's…that's my mum!"
"Captain, what are you doing?" the Doctor looked up, shaking, praying to the stars that the necklace in Jack's hand wasn't what he thought it was.
"I've got a Warp Star wired into the mainframe," Jack said, confirming the Doctor's worst fears, "I break the shell...the entire Crucible goes up."
The Doctor couldn't believe what was happening, "You can't! Where did you get a Warp Star?"
How had it all gone so wrong? Hadn't traveling with him taught them anything? He supposed one thing Martha and Jack at least had learned, give them a choice...but these consequences were too extreme. Everything he'd ever done had been to protect the Earth, the Universe, but here were his companions, one threatening to destroy the planet, the other threatening to destroy the only thing that could return the planets to where they'd been.
"From me," Sarah Jane stepped up, "We had no choice, we saw what happened to the prisoners."
"Impossible," Davros gaped, seeing Sarah Jane, "That face...after all these years..."
Sarah Jane's eyes widened, "Davros…" she whispered, before growing angry, "That's been quite a while. Sarah Jane Smith. Remember?"
"Oh, this is meant to be," Davros grinned, quite happy that everything was coming together, "The Circle of Time is closing. You were there on Skaro at the very beginning of my creation."
"And I've learned how to fight since then. You let the Doctor go or this Warp Star, it gets opened!"
The Doctor looked down, he just couldn't bear to look at them. This was his fault. Everything was his fault. The Daleks, his companions…Evy…
"I'll do it," Jack threatened, tweaking the necklace, "Don't imagine I wouldn't."
Rose laughed, "Now, that's what I call a ransom," the Doctor flinched, something she noticed, her grin fell as she saw him, "Doctor?"
"And the prophesy unfolds," Davros was beaming now.
"The Doctor's soul is revealed!" Caan cackled, "See him! See the heart of him!"
Everyone's eyes were on the Doctor as he stared down at the floor, alone, practically sagging from unbearable guilt and despair.
"The man who abhors violence, never carrying a gun," Davros began, "But this is the truth, Doctor, you take ordinary people and you fashion THEM into weapons. Behold your Children of Time transformed into murderers. I made the Daleks, Doctor. You made this."
"They're trying to help," he said quietly, trying to convince himself more than anyone, but failing.
"God!" Evy fell to the floor, holding her hand against her hearts this time.
"What's wrong?" the New Doctor asked, kneeling next to her as Donna knelt on her other side.
"The guilt…it's crushing him," she gasped, "The pain, the despair…he's blaming himself…" she looked up at the New Doctor, "Can you finish this?" he nodded, getting to work on the device as she stood up and walked over to the wall of the TARDIS, "Please," she whispered to the TARDIS, laying her forehead against the cool wall, "I need help to get through to him."
The TARDIS hummed.
Evy scrunched her eyes shut, focusing with all her might on the Doctor. She almost crumpled to the ground under the full weight of his pain. His companions were preparing to blow themselves up to stop the Daleks, Davros was mocking him, and worse than that…she could see he still thought she was dead. He was so deep in his despair that he'd closed himself off, thinking if he were receptive to anything else he wouldn't be able to handle it. He was forcing himself not to feel her, oblivious to the fact that that wouldn't have saved him from the pain of the death of his Link. It just made it all the more difficult to reach him.
She pushed against his mind and soon she could hear him.
"…I have seen them sacrifice today for their beloved Doctor," Davros was saying, "The Earth woman who fell opening the subwave network."
"Who was that?" the Doctor asked.
"Harriet Jones," Rose replied.
Evy winced, the burden just increased. Someone else had died for him in his mind.
"She gave her life to get you here," Rose continued, not helping to ease his guilt in the slightest.
"How many more?" Davros asked, "Just think. How many have died in your name?"
Evy bit her lip as the Doctor remembered all those he'd met who had either died for him, died helping him, or died because of him. He was barely holding it together, she could feel herself trembling as he was. He was on the verge of being utterly broken.
'Don't you dare,' she hissed, forcing her way past the last of his mental walls and into his mind. She could feel him immediately respond to her presence, 'Don't you dare Doctor.'
She could sense him shutting his eyes from where he stood to focus more on her, 'Evy?' he whispered back, hope in his hearts, 'You're alive?'
'Course I am. You're not on the ground in crippling pain and excruciating agony are you?'
'No…' he whispered, still a bit in shock. She could feel him reaching out for her in her mind and smiled.
'Remember all those you saved,' she told him, pushing images into his mind. She forced him to relive the hundreds of thousands of millions of people he'd helped in his considerably long life, knowing full well about all of them.
She could hear Davros in the background, still trying to break the Doctor, thinking his silence and shut eyes were his surrender, "The Doctor...the man who keeps running, never looking back, because he dare not, out of shame. This is my final victory, Doctor. I have shown you...yourself."
'No, I have shown you yourself,' she corrected in the Doctor's mind just as the last of the images faded, 'You make people better,' she whispered to him, her mind caressing his own with all the love and faith she had in him, she could feel his hearts lifting, 'You give them the power to survive, the strength to go on. You give them the ability to help. You make them into healers…into doctors.'
He smiled gently at her reassurances, his hearts already soaring at just the fact that she was alive. The cold and the guilt and the despair faded as though it had never been there as he felt her presence in his hearts and soul, the Link and his mind telling him this was real, she was alive.
'Thank you,' he whispered to her.
He would survive this…otherwise Evy would kill him.
Rose stared at the Doctor in concern. Halfway through Davros's speech he had shut his eyes and seemed like he was about to cry, only to smile softly as though everything was right with the world. She was worried that he'd finally snapped, that he might try something drastic or stupid.
"Enough," the Supreme Dalek ordered, "Engage defense zero-five."
"It's the Crucible...or the Earth," Martha threatened, holding up the key.
But suddenly there was a light that struck Martha as well as Jack, Sarah Jane, Mickey, and Jackie, forcing them to drop their weapons to the ground as they found themselves transported to the vault of the Crucible.
Jack pushed himself up before rushing over to Martha to help her up, "Martha! I've got you, it's alright…"
"Don't move!" the Doctor shouted, snapping his eyes open and sounding very much like his usual self, startling everyone, especially Martha and Jack, who knew full well that he should have been torn up with Evy's death, Linked or not, as she was the last of his people, "All of you! Stay still!"
"Guard them!" Davros ordered as Sarah Jane, Mickey, and Jackie began to advance, "On your knees, all of you. Surrender!"
"Do as he says."
The Daleks glided around them as they stood there unmoving for only a moment before kneeling down with their hands behind their heads.
"Mum, I told you not to!" Rose hissed to her mother.
"Yeah, but I couldn't leave you," Jackie replied.
"The final prophesy is in place," Davros smirked, "The Doctor and his children all gathered as witnesses. Supreme Dalek...the time has come! Now...detonate the Reality Bomb!"
"Activate planetary alignment field!" the Supreme Dalek ordered as the planets began to glow, "Universal reality detonation in 200 rels!"
Davros pointed a shaking finger upwards, an evil grin on his face.
Everyone looked at the Doctor to see what he would do, only to find him rocking back and forth on the balls of his feet, a smile on his face.
"Nothing can stop the detonation!" Davros shouted gleefully, "Nothing! And no one!"
The Doctor's grin just widened, "Wanna bet?"
'Any day now,' the Doctor's voice drifted into Evy's head.
"Ready!" the New Doctor shouted, finishing the device and tossing it to Donna as Evy typed away at the console.
"Maximum power!" Evy grinned, flipping a lever upwards as the New Doctor pulled another one down, tilting the TARDIS sideways.
The familiar whirring of the TARDIS filled the room moments before it began to materialize.
"But that's…" Jack said in shock as Dalek Caan giggled. Rose and Martha's mouths dropped open.
"Impossible," Davros's eyes widened as the TARDIS fully materialized, light shinning from the windows.
"No," the Doctor smirked as the doors began to open, "That's Evy."
Evy's head popped out, grinning widely at everyone. She looked over at the Doctor, "Told you I'm just as resilient as you," he just nodded and grinned, "Oh…got a surprise for you too."
She stepped aside as the New Doctor stepped out.
"Brilliant!" Jack laughed.
The Doctor's mouth dropped open in disbelief.
Davros wheeled backwards, staring in fear at the New Doctor and Evy…he was safe from one furious Time Lord, but not from an even angrier Time Lady.
The New Doctor glared at Davros for a moment before rushing at him with a gun shaped device in his hands.
"Don't!" the Doctor shouted just before the New Doctor was hit with a bolt of electricity from Davros and sent flying backwards, luckily only winded.
"I told him not to do that," Evy remarked, calmly leaning against the TARDIS, before walking forwards, "He listens to me almost as much as you do," she shot a grin at the Doctor as she moved to pick up the device.
"No!" Davros shouted, seeing her reach for the device. He made to blast her as well only to have the bolt hit what seemed like an invisible wall and fly back at him.
Donna poked her head out of the TARDIS, seeing Davros pushed back.
"Donna," Evy called, wiping her nose, "Come on!"
Donna ran out, clutching something to her chest, and over to her friend's side.
Davros, seeing that, managed to fire another shot at the still fallen device, destroying it. He cackled, "I was wrong about your warriors, Doctor. They are pathetic."
"How comes there're two of you?" Rose asked in shock.
"Human biological meta-crisis," the Doctor answered, half waving off her question as he turned to face Evy, "Never mind that, now you've gone and destroyed the only way of stopping the Reality Bomb! That was your plan?"
"Detonation in twenty rels!" the Supreme Dalek announced, "Nineteen..."
"Oh, you think so?" Evy smirked, opening her mind for him to see their true plans, half of which had already been accomplished.
"Stand witness, Time Lords," Davros grinned, "Stand witness, humans," he activated the holographic screen showing the 27 planets, "Your strategies have failed, your weapons are useless, and...oh, the end of the Universe is come!"
Everyone but the Doctor, Donna, Evy, and the New Doctor braced for impact, but the bomb just powered down, the screen going dead moments before an alarm sounded.
"You really think we'd leave the device out in the open?" Donna smirked, wiggling a different device in front of her, one that looked like a small box with a single blue electrical line flickering across a small screen. The small bolt that Davros had sent at the gun, which had a transmitter to their device in it, contained just enough of his biological signature along with the transmission frequency that Davros had tuned himself into for the device to pick up on and replicate. Donna linked arms with Evy as the two women walked over to the control panel.
Evy took the device and plugged it into the system, tapped a few buttons, smiling as she glanced up at the group now staring at her in confusion, "Oh...I hacked into the Crucible's controls on the TARDIS," she explained, "Closed all Z-Neutrino relay loops using an internalized synchronous back-feed reversal loop!" she looked down at the panel, "That button there!" she nodded at Donna who flipped a switch.
"System in shutdown!" a Dalek announced.
"Detonation negative!" another called.
"Explain," the Supreme Dalek demanded, "Explain! EXPLAIN!"
The Doctor watched, bemused, as Evy and Donna got to work shutting down the rest of the Crucible, Evy giving a few instructions here and there and Donna typing away as instructed, "Donna, you can't even change a plug!"
"Do you wanna bet, time boy?" Donna grinned, suddenly feeling more confident than she ever had before. Everything Evy was telling her to do seemed to make sense.
"You will suffer for this," Davros threatened.
"Really?" Donna tilted her head to the side before glancing at Evy who flicked a switch, electrocuting Davros's arm.
"Bioelectric dampening field with a retrogressive arc inversion," Evy laughed.
"Exterminate them!" Davros ordered, furious.
"Exterminate!" the Daleks called, "Exterminate!"
The Doctor's breath hitched as he watched the Daleks advance on both Donna and Evy, but the girls didn't seem fazed in the slightest, Evy just pushed another few buttons and Donna flicked a switch and…
The Daleks began to power down, their laser arms twitching uncontrollably.
"Weapons non-functional!" a Dalek reported.
"What?" Evy smirked, "Macro transmission of a K-filter wavelength…"
"Blocking Dalek weaponry in a self-replicating energy blindfold matrix?" Donna finished for her.
"How did you work that out?" the Doctor looked up at Donna, impressed.
"Time Lord," the New Doctor answered, "Part Time Lord."
"Part Human!" Donna agreed, loving it, "Oh, yes!"
The Doctor looked at Evy, confused, "There was a small three-way biological meta-crisis…"
"Half Doctor," Donna grinned, "Half Donna! With just a little pinch of Evy!"
The Doctor's eyes widened as Evy nodded, "It's the Eve of the Doctor-Donna...just like the Ood said, remember?"
"They saw it coming!" the Doctor realized, he'd thought they had just been getting Evy's name wrong, but they'd said it, in the end. That they would sing of the Eve, of the Doctor-Donna, the eve of the Doctor-Donna, "The Eve of the Doctor-Donna."
"Holding cells deactivated," Donna announced as she flipped a few switches, turning off the lights surrounding the Doctors and Rose.
"And seal the Vault," Evy added, locks clicking into place.
The women looked up to see both Doctors staring at them, Donna rolled her eyes "Well, don't just stand there, you skinny boys in suits, get to work!"
That seemed to snap them out of it. The Doctors jumped up and ran to help out at the control panel.
"Stop them!" Davros shouted, "Get them away from the controls!"
"And…spin," Evy muttered, flipping a switch, causing the advancing Daleks to spin in circles, much to the amusement of the others in the room.
"And…the other way!" Donna laughed, flicking another switch.
"What did you do?" the New Doctor asked them, amused.
"Trip-stitch circuit-breaker in the psycho-kinetic threshold manipulator," Evy answered.
"But that's brilliant!"
"That's Evy!" the Doctor laughed, reaching out to hug her from the side.
"Why did we never think of that?"
"Because you two...are just Time Lords!" Evy grinned, when she'd sucked the energy back into her, just a tiny bit of Donna got to her as well, the best part, her human nature, just enough to inspire the inspired part of her, "Donna's got that little bit of human…"
"That gut instinct that goes hand-in-hand with planet Earth," Donna finished, "I could think of ideas that you two couldn't dream of in a million years! Ah, the Universe has been waiting for me!" Evy grinned widely, happy her friend was finally seeing just how amazing she was, "Now...let's send that trip-stitch all over the ship. Did I ever tell you…" she gestured to herself, "Best temp in Chiswick?" she wiggled her fingers at Evy, "A hundred words per minute!"
The quartet laughed amongst themselves, oblivious to the Daleks still rolling around uncontrollably or the group of humans watching them in amazement.
"Come on then boys," Evy stepped away from the Doctor to get more in front of another set of keyboards, "We've got 27 planets to send home. Activate magnetron."
"Stop it at once!" Davros demanded.
Jack ran into the TARDIS and grabbed his and Rose's guns, carrying them out with him to face the Daleks, "Mickey!" he called, chucking a gun at him.
"You will desist!"
Mickey just got in front of Davros, gun pointed in his face, "Just stay where you are Mister."
"Out of the way!" Jack yelled, kicking the Daleks out of the way and spinning down another corridor to be pushed on by Rose and Sarah Jane.
"Ready?" Donna called to the trio around her, "And reverse!"
They all hit a few coordinates and commands and soon the planets were all disappearing in flashes of light.
"Off you go, Clom," the Doctor grinned.
"Back home, Adipose 3!" the New Doctor added.
Donna clicked two switches while Evy hit one that was just out of reach for her.
"Shallacatop!" Evy called.
"Pyrovillia!" Donna added.
"The Lost Moon of Poosh."
"We need more power..." the Doctor said suddenly as he and Evy moved towards one console to begin siphoning off energy from around the Crucible to help.
"Is anyone gonna tell us what's going on?" Rose asked, stepping up with Martha, her mother, and Sarah Jane. She was more than a little confused, what was a Link? Davros had said it a number of times, that was Evy, she knew, but what did that mean for the Doctor? What did it mean for her and the Doctor?
Donna, either not realizing what Rose was asking or ignoring it, gestured instead to Evy, "She poured all her regeneration energy…" then nodded at the Doctor, "Into his spare hand, I touched the hand, Evy grabbed me," she gestured to the New Doctor, "He grew out of that. Evy tried to suction off as much of it as she could but some of that fed into me. Took a little while but with all the excitement the synapses got that little extra kick and sprang into life. Part human...part Time Lord. And I got the best bit of them," she grinned as the New Doctor raised an eyebrow, "Their minds."
"So there's FOUR of you?" Sarah Jane breathed, she was so ecstatic to hear that the Doctor had found his Link, he wouldn't be alone anymore.
"Three Doctors?" Rose asked slowly, "And…one Time Lady?"
"I can't tell you what I'm thinking right now," Jack shook his head.
"I don't think we'd want to know Jack," Evy called over.
"You're so unique that the timelines were converging on you," the Doctor turned to Donna, "Human being with a Time Lord brain."
"But you promised me, Dalek Caan," Davros called out, drawing their attention to the Dalek creator, "Why did you not foresee this?"
Dalek Caan just giggled.
"Can't you see, he did," Evy said seriously, "Something was manipulating the timelines for quite some time...working to get Donna to the right place at the right time."
"This would always have happened," Caan stated, "I only helped."
"You...betrayed the Daleks?" Davros gasped.
"I saw the Daleks. What we have done throughout time and space. I saw the truth of us, Creator, and I decreed 'no more.'"
Evy smiled gently at that. She never thought she would see Daleks evolving into semi-understanding beings. But then she'd met Dalek Sek, and never thought it would happen again, and now with Dalek Caan. Maybe it was possible that they could change.
"I will descend to the Vault!" the Supreme Dalek announced.
"Head's up!" Jack called as the Supreme Dalek began to lower himself down.
"Davros, you have betrayed us."
"It was Dalek Caan!" Davros defended.
"The Vault will be purged! You will all be exterminated!"
Or maybe not, Evy thought.
The Supreme Dalek sent out a rally of laser blasts around the room, making them all duck for cover, as the lasers struck the central column of the controls repeatedly, causing sparks to fly.
"Like I was saying, feel this!" Jack fired his gun at the Supreme Dalek, blasting it in half.
"We've lost the magnetron!" Evy shouted, examining the central column.
"And there's only one planet left…" the Doctor began before laughing, "Guess which one," Evy rolled her eyes, "Look, we can use the TARDIS!"
He ran back towards the box and began pressing various buttons as Evy, Donna, and the New Doctor worked on trying to do something from the Vault.
"No…" Evy whispered quietly, but Donna and the New Doctor heard her.
"What's wrong?" Donna asked, moving over to her, next to the column with the New Doctor to talk without the others hearing.
"This here," Evy pointed to a circuit sparking, "It's fused with the magnetron…it's going to overheat before the Doctor can get the TARDIS prepared to get the Earth home!" she ran to the controls, beginning to quickly punch in some instructions.
"There's got to be some way to stop it," the New Doctor mumbled, watching her in confusion.
Evy sighed, "There is. It's a complex sort of configuration," she looked down at the panel she was working on, "But…it has to be continuously put in in order to hold it off even a few moments. I'm putting it in now."
"No! You'd have to stay here in order to do that!"
"The whole place would blow with you in it," Donna agreed.
"Look," she snapped, "It's already started overheating. The Doctor won't be able to get everyone in the TARDIS and out in time. This will buy us enough of it."
"I'll stay," the New Doctor said, reaching over about to push her out of the way, "I'll do it."
"If I stop this place blows in an instant," she warned him, he backed up a bit, "Once it's been put in, it has to be maintained, I stop and we all die. And you don't know the configuration. Even if we could switch places safely it would take too long to give it to you, even in the crudest way."
The New Doctor ran a hand through his hair.
"There's got to be something we can do," Donna mumbled.
"Promise me," Evy began, "You'll get the Doctor out."
"But you're his Link! If you die…he's…he can't…"
"Rose healed him once. She can heal him again."
She was trying to convince herself that if she died, the Doctor wouldn't follow after her. But even she couldn't make herself believe that.
"There's no healing from something like that," the New Doctor stated.
Evy flinched, she knew that. She could remember how the her in Donna's alternate world felt. But the Doctor…he was stronger than her…he hadn't been Linked too long, there might be a chance that he'd survive…
"Please," she whispered, "I just want him safe."
Donna frowned, but somehow she could sense that if they didn't agree, Evy would do something drastic to make them all go whether they liked it or not, "Ok."
"Donna," the New Doctor began.
But before Donna could defend herself Evy spoke, "You need to prepare the Earth for transport."
The New Doctor sighed and went to the other side of the controls, "Holding Earth stability...maintaining atmospheric shell…" he mumbled, flicking switches, glancing up at Evy who was frantically typing.
"The prophesy must complete," Caan shrieked at them.
"Don't listen to him," Evy mumbled.
"I have seen the end of everything Dalek. And you must make it happen, Doctor."
The New Doctor looked up, struck by his words, "He's right. Because with or without a Reality Bomb, this Dalek Empire's big enough to slaughter the cosmos. They've got to be stopped!"
"No!" Evy shouted. That was genocide!
"Just…just wait for the Doctor," Donna tried to reason.
"I am the Doctor," he said seriously before getting to work, "Maximizing Dalekanium power feeds."
"No!" Evy called, she wanted desperately to rush to him and pull him away from the controls, but she'd already put in the configuration, she couldn't stop now.
"Blasting them BACK!" he flipped the device she'd made on.
And then the Daleks exploded, one by one, each screaming in agony.
"What have you done?" Evy breathed, staring in horror, "I didn't rig that device to kill them! Only to incapacitate them!"
The New Doctor looked up at her, "I upgraded it while you contacted the Doctor."
"What've you done?" the Doctor demanded as well, rushing out of the TARDIS.
"Fulfilling the prophesy."
The ship jolted, sending everyone but Evy, who had half thrown herself onto the controls to keep typing, flying while the New Doctor just observed with a wild expression in his eyes.
"Do you know what you've done?" the Doctor demanded furiously, "Now, get in the TARDIS!" the New Doctor hesitated a moment, before going to stand next to the TARDIS doors, sending a meaningful glance at Donna and Evy. The Doctor turned to face the rest of them, "Everyone! All of you inside, run! In, in, in, in, in!"
Evy watched as they ran to the TARDIS, the Doctor following close behind, assuming she was following him. She saw Donna rush past the door and into the TARDIS, straight to the controls while the New Doctor nodded at her. She nodded as well just before he shut the TARDIS doors.
She continued to punch in the configuration, trying in vain to block the Link just enough to not feel the Doctor's impending rage…she failed…
As soon as the door slammed shut the Doctor knew something was wrong. He turned around to see everyone but Evy standing inside the TARDIS.
"No!" he shouted, rushing for the door, only to be intercepted by the New Doctor who grabbed him and pulled him, struggling, away from the door. He could hear Donna behind him punching in some coordinates just before the TARDIS began to activate.
"No!" he shouted again as they were all thrown to the floor, "Evy!" he ran to the door, but it was too late, the TARDIS had taken off, leaving Evy stranded there, "What have you done?" he demanded, turning to face the New Doctor and Donna.
"She knew you'd never make it off before the Crucible blew," the New Doctor replied, "Even just seconds to spare."
"She's working on an algorithm to keep it from blowing long enough for us to get away from it," Donna added.
"We're going back," he stated, stalking over to the controls, he wouldn't lose her again.
"I've locked the coordinates," Donna replied solemnly, "We can't go back."
The Doctor looked frantic at that, he turned to Mickey and Rose, "You're transporters…"
"Need to power up," Mickey frowned, "Still got another 10 minutes."
The Doctor ran a hand through his hair, "Transporters…teleporters…" he placed a hand on one of his hearts where he could feel the warmth of the Emergency Spatial Shifter Evy had made for him, "Shifter!"
He ran to the console and began punching in some instructions. He had to hope Evy's Shifter hadn't been damaged in the near regeneration before. He slammed his hand down on a button just as a large explosion appeared outside the TARDIS.
For one brief moment his hearts stopped beating.
And then a figure went flying through the air, slamming into the wall of the TARDIS and fell to the ground. Evy.
He ran over to her side, pulling her into his arms as he checked her. She was a bit battered, her clothes burned, and she would have a horrible bruise on her back from where she'd hit the wall, but she was alive, if unconscious. But the Link assured him, she was very much alive.
He let out a breath of relief before burying his face in her shoulder as he cradled her to him. His mind racing a mile a minute, but one prevalent thought striking the forefront, never again. He would never ever put her in a position where it was her life for others. Never again.
"Is he alright?" Mickey asked the group quietly, watching as the Doctor sat almost curled in a ball with Evy on his lap, just stroking her hair.
Donna smiled gently, "He's just thinking."
Donna glanced at them sadly, "He's praying he never has to make a decision where it's her or the Earth."
"Why?" Rose asked, her heart breaking as she watched the Doctor. Davros's words came back to her, he truly was in the arms of another. And it wasn't fair.
"Because I don't think I could pick the Earth," the Doctor mumbled, so quietly they almost didn't hear him, "Not now…"
They were silent.
It was one thing for them to be willing to destroy the Earth but it was quite another for the Doctor to agree to it, especially given how often he saved it.
"You would," a voice mumbled, a bit hoarse. He looked down to see Evy's eyes fluttering open, "I would make you," he grinned down at her as she smiled up at him, "The Earth is far too amazing to just let it go in anything but the expansion of the sun in 5 billion years."
"Um…speaking of the Earth," Sarah Jane interrupted, smiling though at the Doctor's display of affection, "It's stuck in the wrong part of space!"
"I'm on it," he got up, but not before moving Evy so she was sitting against the wall, "You. Stay," he pointed a warning finger at her before he walked over to the monitor, punching in some coordinates, "Torchwood Hub, this is the Doctor. Are you receiving me?"
"Loud and clear," Gwen appeared on screen, grinning, with Ianto, "Is Jack there?"
"And Evy?" Ianto added.
"Can't get rid of him," he glanced at Jack, before smiling softly, "And Evy's just fine," but then he paused, a thought coming to him, he turned to Jack, "Jack, what's her name?"
"Gwen Cooper," Evy called, answering for them, "Hi Gwen! Ianto!"
"Hi!" Gwen waved, not able to see Evy though from the crowd in front of the monitor.
"Tell me, Gwen Cooper, are you from an old Cardiff family?" the Doctor asked.
Evy rolled her eyes, she'd already looked into that.
"Yes," Gwen answered slowly, unsure where this was going, "All the way back to the 1800s."
"Hmm, thought so!" he grinned before looking at Rose, who wasn't quite smiling as widely as she normally did, "Spatial genetic multiplicity…"
"Oh," she faltered, "Yeah."
"Yeah, yeah!" he said, excited, not noticing Rose's lack of enthusiasm, "It's a funny old world!" but then he shook himself out of it, getting down to business, "Now, Torchwood, I want you to open up that Rift Manipulator, send all the power to me."
"Doing it now, sir," Ianto called.
"What's that for?" Martha asked.
"It's a towrope," Evy answered again, her eyes closed and her head resting on the TARDIS's wall.
"Right," the Doctor grinned and turned to Sarah Jane, "Now then, Sarah, what was your son's name?"
"Luke, he's called Luke," Sarah Jane said, excited, "And the computer's called Mr. Smith."
"Calling Luke and Mr. Smith!" the Doctor turned to the monitor, "Come on, Luke, shake a leg!"
"Is mum there?" Luke appeared on screen.
"Oh, she's fine and dandy."
"Yes!" Sarah Jane laughed, seeing her son was alright as well, "Yes!"
"Now, Mr. Smith, I want you to harness the Rift power and loop it round the TARDIS, you got that?"
"I regret I will need remote access to TARDIS base code numerals," Mr. Smith replied.
"Oh, blimey," he ran a hand through his hair, "That's gonna take a while."
"No, no, no," Sarah Jane called, darting around to the monitor, "Let me! K9, out you come!"
The Doctor grinned as K9 scooted onto the screen.
"Affirmative, mistress!" K9 answered.
"Oh, good dog!" the Doctor laughed, "K9, give Mr. Smith the base code!"
"Master," K9 greeted, getting to work, "TARDIS base code now being transferred," the base codes appeared on the screen, "The process is simple."
Evy snorted, "Figures…" Donna looked at her curiously as she moved to sit down next to her, "His dog's ego is as big as his!"
The Doctor rolled his eyes and turned back to the monitor, "Now then, you lot…" he tugged Sarah Jane around to where she had been standing, "Sarah, hold that. And Mickey, you hold that. Because, you know why this TARDIS is always rattling about the place?"
"You're a horrible driver?" Evy supplied, already knowing why it was so bad.
"Ha ha," the Doctor replied sarcastically, still positioning people, "Rose, that there. It was designed to have six pilots and I have to do it single handed…" Evy coughed, "I mean, Evy and I have to do it by ourselves," he flashed her a grin, "Martha, keep that level. But not anymore! Jack, there you go, steady that. Now we can fly this thing…" he turned to see Jackie standing there and hesitated, "No, Jackie. No, no. Not you," he patted her shoulder, "Don't touch anything, just...stand back…" he spun around to look at the console again, "Like it's meant to be flown! We've got the Torchwood Rift looped around the TARDIS by Mr. Smith. We're gonna fly planet Earth back home," he moved over to his place at the console, "Right, then! Off we go."
He pulled a lever and they were off, actually flying smoothly as the TARDIS pulled the Earth along. Donna laughed as they flew, the New Doctor coming over to lean against the wall beside them, just watching, though Evy could see his eyes were trained on Rose. She smiled softly to herself.
"Rose," the Doctor gestured to a button which she pushed. Jack pumped a lever, Sarah Jane pushed another lever down, as the trio watched.
"That's really good, Jack," Donna called, "I think you're the best."
"Oi!" Evy nudged her friend in the arm, "Stop it! You're just as bad as him!"
Donna just laughed.
Moments later the Earth was back to its original position. Everyone cheered and hugged each other in happiness. Donna jumped up and ran towards the hug fest, pulling Sarah Jane away from Jack and hugging him herself.
Evy laughed, getting up as the New Doctor walked forward, but her grin faded when she noticed Rose standing there, off to the side, frowning as the Doctor gave her a simple high-five and moved on to high-five Martha as well.
The TARDIS materialized in front of Sarah Jane's house, everyone stepping out for a moment to look around and enjoy the sunlight as the Doctor said goodbye to his former companion.
"You know...you act like such a lonely man," Sarah Jane commented, "But look at you! You've got the biggest family on Earth!" she smirked, teasing him, "And you've found your Link to boot!"
The Doctor's smile became somewhat dreamy as he glanced back to see Evy standing there, talking with Donna as the two walked back into the TARDIS. Just the thought of it, being Linked, it was something he'd dreamed of on Gallifrey but never thought he'd ever get to have. Now…he couldn't explain how amazing it felt. To know he wasn't alone, to have a constant reminder of that, to be so completely connected to another person the way he was, the warm feeling in the pit of his chest which he knew was the Link's way of telling him Evy was safe and happy…
He turned back as Sarah Jane held her arms out to him and pulled him into a tight hug.
She let go of him suddenly, remembering something, "Gotta go! He's only fourteen! It's a long story. And thank you!"
The Doctor laughed before waving her off as she turned to leave, running down the path towards her house.
Evy watched as the Doctor spoke to Sarah Jane before heading into the TARDIS with Donna who walked off, getting a call from her mother.
She looked around, seeing Martha, Jack, and the New Doctor talking, while Mickey and Jackie sat next to each other on the captain's chair. Rose was off to the side, standing at the console, looking down at it sadly.
Evy frowned and walked over to her. Rose didn't look up, for a moment it was silent, but then Rose spoke, "I imagined this so differently," she commented quietly, "That I'd come back, and the Doctor would sweep me off my feet, and we'd just be together but…he's so different."
"I'm sorry," Evy looked down at the console as well, "It's my fault."
Rose looked up at her, confused. A small part of her did blame Evy, but Evy also knew she had no idea just how large the situation actually was.
She sighed, "On Gallifrey, there's a thing called Linking. It's…it's when you meet the Time Lord that is perfectly compatible to you, not just in your current regeneration but in all others. The Link creates a mental and emotional bond to the other person and…and often, that sort of deep connection and understanding, leads to something more. I wore a Perception Filter," she dangled it, scoffing to herself, "It's useless now, the near regeneration destroyed what was left of it…it was the only thing keeping the Doctor from forming a Link with me."
"So you mean…" Rose trailed, tears collecting in her eyes.
Evy nodded solemnly, "The Link was completed," she looked up sadly, truly feeling regret for what had happened. She watched as Rose looked down, her heart breaking, "I'm so sorry," she whispered, "I tried so hard to keep it from happening, but it did anyway."
"So…he doesn't love me anymore?" Rose breathed.
"Of course he does," Evy reassured her, "He will always love you, the way he loves all his previous companions, they are his greatest friends and..."
Rose frowned at the thought, shaking her head, "No, no, I don't believe that. What I had with the Doctor…what we've been through…feelings like that don't just go away."
"They didn't," Evy swallowed, "But things have changed Rose, feelings can change. His did."
Rose glared at her, "Because of you," she half spat.
She knew she needed to calm down, that she had no right to act this way. She had been gone for years now, she hadn't had any sort of claim on the Doctor before she left either. She hadn't been the first companion, she wouldn't have been the last, Martha and Donna's involvement had proved that, she wasn't a Time Lord, she wasn't even the same age as him! She had no right to expect him to not move on at some point, knowing that he thought she'd be trapped in Pete's world forever. She should have been happy that he'd managed to find love again, that he was happy...but damn it! She couldn't!
She didn't know if it was because Evy was a Time Lady or his Link or what, but she just...didn't want him to be with HER. If he'd fallen for anyone, another human, she wouldn't have felt so...she didn't know the word. If he loved a human then that meant he truly had loved her as well at some point, that he would have told her it on the beach too. But to find he had fallen for a Time Lady, one of his people who should have been dead...how could she compete with that? She should have been thrilled he wasn't alone any longer, but to know that she'd never be able to share things with him like a Time Lady could...it hurt. A Time Lady would have survived/fought in the war, faced Daleks, attended the same schools, learned the same lessons, share the same weaknesses and strengths as the Doctor, understood...something she knew she would never be able to do, not entirely.
Evy glared at her, "Don't you dare Rose Tyler," she hissed at the girl.
She had tried to be kind, to explain it as gently as she could. Rose had no idea the hell she'd put herself through trying to keep the Doctor from Linking to her. She had tried to respect Rose's memory, the things Rose had done for the Doctor, by not pushing him, by not letting him jump into a relationship he wasn't ready for. She'd given him time to grieve for the loss of this human, time to mourn, heal, move on. She'd kept her distance as much as it killed her to do so, to honor Rose...and here was this...human...having the audacity to get angry at her?
"It's all your fault!" Rose nearly shouted, managing to keep it to a loud whisper.
Evy's hand clenched at her sides, she could feel the urge to smack Rose rising but she'd rather have her hand touch the Doctor and not soiled with Rose's cheek.
"Rose, I am just trying to explain..."
"Don't say it," Rose snapped, glaring at her, "It's not true. He loves me and I love him!"
"You love him do you?" Evy's lifted an eyebrow at her.
Rose huffed, "Yes."
"What's his greatest fear?" she asked. Rose's eyes widened and she blinked. Evy could see it, she didn't know, "What was his favorite past time as a child? What's his favorite thing to eat? His favorite color?" Rose floundered for answers, "What's his name?"
Rose's jaw tensed, "Daleks," she answered, "Adventures, bananas, brown, the Doctor."
Evy let out a little laugh, shaking her head, "Losing the people he cares most dearly about, standing on the beaches and watching the stars and imagining flying out among them, Jelly Babies, burnt orange, and do you really think anyone would name their child 'Doctor?'"
Rose stiffened, trying to hear any sort of falseness in Evy's voice that would tell her the woman was just making up wrong answers...but there was nothing. She crossed her arms, "You don't have to know all that about someone to love them."
"No," she conceeded, "You just have to actually care about them and not what they represent."
Rose gasped, her mouth hanging open at Evy's implication, "How dare..."
"You killed Donna," she cut in. Rose's eyes widened as she tried to defend herself, but Evy wouldn't let her, "I know all about it Rose. She tried to tell us, but the dream had started to fade. But I saw it."
She had. When she'd absorbed the memories of her other self, her parallel self, she'd also seen what Donna had experienced in the other world even if Donna hadn't remembered much of it. She'd seen Rose, what she'd done, how she'd manipulated Donna into thinking she had to die.
"What on Earth would make you think the Doctor would ever be ok with anyone trying to manipulate someone into dying?" she asked, her voice a cold whisper, "Do you know what that would do to him? And you, the woman who claims to love him, willingly and knowingly manipulated Donna into thinking she HAD to die? Just to get you out of another parallel world?" Rose opened her mouth again, but Evy was on a roll, "You know as well as I do that anything could have gotten the parallel Donna to turn left, it didn't have to mean my Donna's death. You could have given her a mobile, a bomb for the roadway, hell even a bike to get there in time, you didn't. There were dozens of ways you could have stopped Donna turning left but you took the easy way, the quickest way. And that way would have killed the Doctor to do. How could you possibly claim to care even a lick about him if you're willing to murder his best friend to get back to him? What, did you think he'd thank you for that?"
Rose swallowed hard.
"And you went about making everyone think you knew anything about time travel just because you'd done it with him?" Evy shook her head, "Rose you could have caused more damage than ever. You gave them access to the TARDIS! Don't think that just because the Doctor died that the doors magically opened. Someone gave UNIT the key, someone gave humans access to time travel technology before they were meant to even know it was possible! And you cannibalized her! You tore her apart to make some rickety smoke and mirror trick that could have just as easily killed Donna to send her back in. You didn't think, at all, about the consequences. You just wanted, what you wanted, damn the consequences."
"I didn't..." Rose began.
Evy cut her off once more, "The Doctor is an amazing man, and he's easy to fall in love with," she smiled a bit, putting a hand to her chest, "Believe me I know, but Rose..." she looked at her, "You don't know him. You don't know anything about him."
"And you do?" Rose had to ask, had to try and get one jibe in there...
"Yes," she nodded, "I do. And I love him, not for who he is now, but for who he always was," she eyed Rose a moment, "I think he did love you once, in some way, Rose Tyler," Rose looked up, "But things, people, and feelings can change given time, and he's a TIME Lord. I've seen them changing, even before the Filter stopped working."
And with that, she turned and moved around the console just as the Doctor strode back in, a happy grin on his face, oblivious to the tense discussion that had just gone down, as he walked over to her and began to help prepare the box to take the rest of the group to Torchwood.
Evy glanced up to see Rose had walked off to go stand with her mother. She sighed, that had not gone as well as she had hoped. But it needed to be said, Rose had to hear it. She had seen a change in the Doctor for a while now...but she'd tried to act like she hadn't...she didn't want to encourage his feelings, but let them happen naturally. She didn't want to influence them, so she tried not to see it, tried not to get excited by how he looked at her with more and more care and...and love...in his eyes as time had gone by.
"I TOLD you, no teleport," the Doctor said as he soniced Jack's Manipulator again, he looked over at Evy meaningfully, telling her not to undo what he had done again, "And Martha, get rid of that Osterhagen thing, eh? Save the world one more time."
"Consider it done," Martha grinned.
Jack saluted the Doctor, then Martha, and turned to salute Evy who glared at him for the action. He hesitated before grinning and scooping her into a bear hug.
Martha laughed as she just barely heard the Doctor growl and glare at Jack. As soon as Jack pulled away she stepped forward and hugged the woman as well.
They turned and walked off when Mickey appeared behind them.
"Oi!" the Doctor called, seeing him, "Where are you going?"
"Well, I'm not stupid, I can work out what happens next," he replied, "And hey, I had a good time in that parallel world but my Gran passed away. Nice and peaceful. Spent her last years living in a mansion. There's nothing there for me, now. Certainly not Rose."
He wouldn't tell them, but he'd heard everything Evy had said to Rose in the TARDIS. He had to applaud the girl's guts, telling Rose exactly what she deserved to hear. He knew Rose needed to hear just how much she'd changed, but he also knew that, despite what Evy had said, Rose wouldn't be getting over the Doctor any time soon. He'd had to spend ages waiting for Rose when she'd gone off to travel with the Doctor, then he'd had to spend years waiting for her to get over the fact they were in a parallel world and competing with the memory of the man. He wasn't going to waste any more time secretly hoping that something would begin especially when it had ended long ago. He realized that now.
"What will you do?" Evy asked, grinning as his gaze flickered to Martha. She'd seen the looks he'd been shooting her on the way back and she knew things hadn't worked out with Tom, meaning her dear Martha Jones was, as she had once called Donna, single and sexy.
"Anything!" Mickey grinned, "Brand new life. Just you watch," he knocked fists with the Doctor, "See you, boss," and nodded at Evy, "Ma'am," Evy rolled her eyes at him as he winked at her and turned to catch up with Martha and Jack, "Hey you two!"
The Doctor smiled as he and Evy headed back to the TARDIS, they only had one more stop to make.
The TARDIS materialized on the sand of the beach of Bad Wolf Bay, the sun in the sky. Jackie stepped out first, followed by the New Doctor, and then Rose.
"Ugh, fat lot of good this is!" Jackie commented, looking around, "Back of beyond, bloody Norway! I'm gonna have to phone your father. He's on the nursery run."
Rose just looked around, confused as to why she was back here again.
"I was pregnant," Jackie continued, turning to the New Doctor, "Do you remember? Had a baby boy!"
The Doctor, Donna, and Evy stepped out of the TARDIS. The Doctor had his hands in his pockets, but he kept glancing at Evy who stood on the other side of Donna. He could sense that if he tried to take her hand like he wanted, she would put more distance between them.
"Ah, brilliant!" the New Doctor grinned, "What did you call him?"
"Doctor," Jackie answered.
"…really?" the New Doctor asked, not quite sure what to say. Who in their right mind would ever name a baby 'Doctor?'
"No, you plum. He's called Tony!"
"Hold on," Rose interrupted, turning around to face the trio by the TARDIS, "This is the parallel Universe, right?"
"You're back home," the Doctor nodded.
"The walls of the world are closing again..." Evy began.
"Now that the Reality Bomb never happened," Donna finished, "It's dimension retro closure," she grinned as the New Doctor did as well, "See, I really get that stuff now."
Rose shook her head, close to tears, looking at the Doctor, she was not about to let Evy's words deter her, "No, but I spent all that time trying to find you, I'm not going back now!"
"But you've got to," the Doctor said, stepping forward with Donna and Evy, "Because we saved the Universe, but at a cost. And the cost is him," he nodded at the New Doctor.
"In destroying the Daleks," Evy added quietly, "He committed genocide. He's just too dangerous to be left to his own devices."
"You made me!" the New Doctor exclaimed angrily, looking between the trio. All three of them had had a hand in his creation, the Doctor's hand, Evy's regeneration energy, Donna's DNA, and there they were, seeming like they wanted nothing to do with him.
"Exactly," the Doctor agreed, "You were born in battle, full of blood and anger and revenge," he looked at Rose, "Remind you of someone?"
Rose frowned, she knew who it was.
"That's me," the Doctor continued, "When we first met. And you made me better. And now you can do the same for him."
"You healed him once," Evy mumbled, repeating what she'd said to Donna only moments ago, "You can heal him again."
She hadn't exactly meant it in this context at the time.
"But he's not you," Rose said, tears in her eyes, frustrated.
"He needs you," the Doctor shook his head, "That was very me."
Rose flinched at the past tense.
The TARDIS made a grinding noise, drawing all their attention to it, "We've gotta go," Donna announced.
"This reality's sealing itself off," the Doctor said, "Forever."
He turned, about to head back to the TARDIS, when Rose ran forward, "You can't just leave me here!" the Doctor turned round to face her, "Please Doctor…I…I need you…"
"And he needs you," the Doctor nodded at his doppelganger again.
Rose shook her head frantically, trying to make him see what she was saying. Suddenly, an idea came to her, "When I last stood on this beach on the worst day of my life...what was the last thing you said to me?" she prayed that this would be just the jolt to his hearts that she needed, bring back the part of him that seemed so clearly and entirely lost to her now, "Go on, say it."
Evy frowned, seeing what Rose was trying to do. Bring back some semblance of the Doctor who left her on the beach years ago, the one who didn't want to be without her. But that was a different Doctor, much like the Rose before them was a different Rose than the one who stood on the beach before as well. The only one who didn't seem to realize that was Rose. She sighed, she knew…this would hurt Rose more than anything. It always hurt to have one's last hope crushed.
"I said, 'Rose Tyler,'" he answered.
"Yeah, and how was that sentence going to end?" she looked at him expectantly, she had guessed what it was going to be, but if he said it…if he confirmed it…if he just said that he loved her...
The Doctor frowned, growing just a bit uncomfortable with how Rose was pratically demanding this of him, "Does it need saying?" he asked, just a little confused as well.
He would have said he loved her. He still did, but not in the way she wanted, he couldn't love her in that way, not anymore. He loved all his companions in his own way and most of them he never said it to. But Evy...everything changed when she'd come into his life.
At first, he hadn't wanted to replace his first human companion after the war with anyone, not Martha, not Evy when he'd thought she was human. But...even when he'd thought that, he knew Evy was different than Rose in some way he couldn't place. When he'd discovered she was a Time Lady...it was easier to be around Evy, knowing she couldn't take the place of a human companion, she wasn't human. He'd still felt a bit like he was dishonoring the memory of Rose and all she'd done for him, she was a dear companion, but Evy wasn't her. Evy was different, she was a Time Lady...he just...had to let himself care for her as that. River's words had jolted him, it was alright to care for her in that way, in a way he knew he could never come to care for any human who might travel with him, he couldn't ever let himself fall completely in love with them knowing how fragile the human life was. He'd never truly cared for another of his species before either, loved them, he hadn't known then that he'd fallen in love with Evy. Once he'd let himself feel what he'd been holding back on, it just kept growing. He couldn't say those words to Rose, not now, not in the way she wanted, because there was only one person that he felt that way about, that he loved truly and completely and naturally, and that was Evy.
He smiled softly, he loved her.
He really did.
And he wouldn't hurt her, even if that meant Rose would be hurting in the process.
Rose let out a breath, her heart finally breaking into pieces. She turned around, stunned, and walked off to a line of rocks that jutted into the sea.
The Doctor looked around, confused and a bit concerned, he'd hoped that he'd said that gently enough to not hurt her too badly, "Did I do something wrong?"
Evy took a breath and shook her head, despite what Rose had said and done, she couldn't leave any of the Doctor's companions like that, "Let me talk to her. I'll sort it out."
"Just be quick," Donna added as Evy walked off motioning for the New Doctor to join her, "The dimensions close to closing."
Evy nodded and walked over to Rose.
"I didn't want to believe it," Rose said to herself, sensing Evy approaching. She turned around, tears streaming from her eyes, "But he looks at me…like I'm just a companion again…like everything we've been through didn't mean anything."
"I know," Evy nodded sadly, "He doesn't look at you like you're special anymore."
She recalled the last time she had said something like that, to Nurse Redfern when the Doctor had been human. She turned to the New Doctor, gesturing for him to step up and stand next to her.
"But there is someone who does," she continued. Rose looked up to see the second Doctor standing there, "I tried to keep the Doctor from Linking to me because I knew you Rose Tyler, through the Doctor's memories of you…I had no doubt you would try and find your way back to him…and I didn't want to be the thing that stood in the way of the two of you being together…if you made the Doctor happy," she looked down at her broken Filter, "But Fate had other ideas," she shook her head, "I know how much the Doctor cared for you Rose, before the parallel world sealed…I know how much this must be hurting you now…I'd like to make up for it."
"How?" Rose asked, her voice breaking. She felt a shame rise in her. She'd been so angry at the woman before her for seeming to have taken the Doctor's hearts, and here she was, trying to offer her solace.
"Tell her," Evy said to the New Doctor, "Go on."
"I look like him and I think like him..." the New Doctor began, "Same memories, same thoughts, same everything. Except…" he smiled, "I've only got one heart."
"Which means?" Rose asked, not daring to get her hope up.
"He's part human," Evy answered, "Specifically the aging part."
"I'll grow old and never regenerate," he nodded, "I've only got one life...Rose Tyler. I could spend it with you. If you want."
"You'll grow…grow old at the same time as me?" Rose swallowed.
"Together," he smiled.
Rose shook her head, "But if he's the same as the Doctor…" she looked at Evy, "Then he loves you too. He's Linked to you and..."
Evy smiled softly, "The Link only works on one person. I once told Donna, if the Doctor had a twin, who was exactly like him in every way, same thoughts, same looks, same personality, same mannerisms, same everything…I would still only love the Doctor and the Link..." she shook her head, "Rose, it's not like we Link and fall in love. I'll admit it happens more often than not, but it's not instant. It takes time, to sort through everything, the memories, thoughts, feelings, the connection of the Link. It's just an instant connection, not an instant love," she looked at the New Doctor, "And besides…he sprang from my regeneration energy and Donna's DNA…makes him more like my brother than anything."
She stepped forward and gently took Rose's arm, tugging her to stand before the New Doctor. She lifted Rose's arm and placed her hand on his chest so she could feel his single heart beating.
He smiled softly at Rose, "Would you like to hear how I would have ended that sentence?" he asked her. Rose looked up at him as he leaned down and whispered something in ear. Evy's smile widened as Rose leaned back, pulled the New Doctor to her by his lapels, and kissed him.
She nodded at her work before walking back towards the TARDIS as the New Doctor and Rose continued to kiss passionately on the beach.
"Was it something I said?" the Doctor asked as she approached, still concerned he'd said something to upset Rose before.
Evy looked back at the kissing couple and grinned, "Oh yes."
The Doctor frowned, but Evy just took his arm and led him back into the TARDIS, shutting the door behind them.
As the TARDIS dematerialized Rose and the New Doctor separated and looked over to watch the blue box disappear. Rose frowned for a moment but then an arm wound its way around her waist and she was pulled back against a chest, a grin slowly formed on her face.
The Doctor was leaning against the wall of the TARDIS as Donna and Evy fiddled with the controls, just watching them silently.
"I thought we could try the planet Felspoon..." Donna mentioned, "Just 'cos. What a good name, 'Felspoon.'"
"It's got mountains that sway in the breeze," Evy nodded, "Mountains that move. What do you think of that?"
"And how do you know about Felspoon?" the Doctor frowned, eyeing Donna, recalling that a biological meta-crisis had occurred…knowing what that could mean for Donna.
Donna paused, frowning, "I…I'm not sure…"
"That was my fault," Evy replied, stopping her actions as well.
The Doctor frowned this time, "What do you mean? How was it your fault?"
"The meta-crisis," she sighed, coming around to lean on the console next to Donna, "When Donna touched the hand, the regeneration energy started to go to her, but I grabbed her and tried to siphon the energy back into me. A bit of the energies and DNA got mixed up…" she rubbed her head, "Donna got a bit of us…mostly your confidence," she grinned at the Doctor, "And a bit of my inspiration…" she looked at Donna, "You see things now, don't you? Things that didn't make sense before you get now."
"Uh, yeah," Donna nodded.
"The Time Lord mind is allowing you to understand things that confused you before. It sort of gave us a connection, I can feed you information, like in the Vault, and it makes sense to you."
"But…" Donna began, sensing something coming.
"There's never been a Human-Time Lord meta-crisis before now," the Doctor answered sadly, "You got very lucky that Evy was able to pull some of it back from you…" if she hadn't, Donna's mind would have overloaded, they would have had to wipe it clean of all talk of aliens and their adventures, and that would have killed him, "But she didn't pull enough of it."
"What do you mean?" she frowned, not willing to believe what her mind was telling her.
"You said before that the excitement fired up your synapses," Evy replied, "The more excitement, the more danger, you face, the faster they'll fire…but if they fire too fast…it'll damage your mind, it could kill you Donna."
"It's not safe to travel with us anymore," the Doctor sighed, "I can't say we won't find ourselves in a predicament worse than that at some point, and I…"
"We," Evy cut in.
"We," the Doctor amended, "Would never forgive ourselves if something happened to you because of us."
"I want to stay," she whispered, tears in her eyes.
"But you can't."
"I was gonna be with you two forever. The rest of my life...travelling...in the TARDIS…"
"But that's just it," Evy smiled a bit, "You can live out the rest of your life, just on Earth. You have no idea how amazing and special the human life is, and you get to experience it," she reached out and took Donna's hands in her own, "You can live your life anyway you want…and I can't wait to see what you do with it. Because I know…" she grinned widely, "It'll be amazing, like you."
Donna sniffled and forced a smile, "You better be around to see my amazing life," she told her, looking between her and the Doctor, "The both of you."
The Doctor smiled sadly, "Wouldn't miss it."
Donna nodded and turned to the console, punching in the coordinates for her house and flipping a lever.
"But…I don't understand," Wilf said as he and Sylvia sat with Donna on the sofa as the Doctor and Evy sat on a chair across from them.
"She took our minds into her own head," Evy repeated the story to Donna's family, "I managed to pull enough of it out but not enough for her to be safe travelling with us. And Donna's far too special to risk."
Donna smiled lightly at her friend. One thing still remained from the crisis, her confidence and belief in herself, apparently Evy's firm belief that she was special and amazing had carried over too.
The Doctor frowned when he saw a look on Sylvia's face, one he'd often seen when it came to Donna, "I just want you to know that there are worlds out there, safe in the sky, because of her," the Doctor added, speaking more to Sylvia than anyone, "That there are people living in the light, singing songs of Donna Noble, a thousand million light-years away...they will never forget her…" he smiled at Donna, "And for one moment...one shining moment...she was the most important woman in the whole wide Universe."
"She still is," Sylvia replied shortly, cross with how the Doctor was speaking to her, as though she didn't know how truly remarkable her daughter was, "She's my daughter."
Donna's smile widened considerably as she heard her mother's words. She knew her mother loved her, but hearing it, it made her day.
Evy grinned at Sylvia's words, the Doctor as well. He stood, sensing the family had much to talk about and held out a hand for Evy. She took it, allowing the Doctor to pull her off the arm of the chair. They bid farewell to Donna, Evy sonicing her phone so she could call the TARDIS whenever she wanted, and left the house.
It was dark and pouring rain, thunder rumbling in the distance, but the Doctor and Evy just smiled, stepping into it.
"Ah...you'll have quite a bit of this," the Doctor remarked, staring up at the sky, "Atmospheric disturbance."
Evy laughed, "It'll pass though. Everything does eventually."
Wilf came up behind them, watching as they stared at the sky before turning to him, "Bye then, Wilfred!" the Doctor said as Evy nodded.
"What about you, now?" Wilf called after them, "Who've you got? I mean, all those friends of yours..."
"They've all got someone else," the Doctor shrugged, "Still, that's fine. I'm fine."
"We're fine," Evy corrected, taking his hand, "You've got someone too."
The Doctor smiled down at her, warmth filling his hearts at her words, seeing she seemed to have gotten past whatever had affected her after she'd nearly regenerated. He squeezed her hand gently.
Wilf smiled as well at the display of affection, he had seen it before when the Doctor and Evy had come to their house during the whole ATMOS debacle. But now, it just seemed stronger.
"Every night," Wilf promised them, "When it gets dark...and the stars come out...I'll look up, we all will, up at the sky and think of you two."
"Thank you," the Doctor breathed before turning around and walking off to the TARDIS with Evy.
The Doctor leaned against a Y-beam, watching Evy as he had before they'd taken Donna home, a small frown on his face. As soon as they'd gotten inside the TARDIS she'd gone off to the console. Her thoughts were still guarded, as they had been since they'd Linked, and he didn't like it. But then again…his own thoughts were guarded as well, but he wanted to wait for her to react to the completed Link first before he lowered his mental shields.
"I'm sorry," she said after quite a bit of him staring at her.
"What for?" his frown deepened.
"For Rose. For the Link triggering just as you found her again. It wasn't fair, to either of you."
He blinked, realizing something. That was why she'd acted the way she had, distant, when they'd Linked. Rose had been there, and they both knew how Rose felt about him. It would have hurt the girl much more than back on the beach to see him trying to be so close to someone else. Evy had been distant out of respect for Rose's feelings, not because he had seemingly accidently Linked to her.
He sighed, he'd sensed that and seen it in her mind the moment he'd Linked, how frightened she'd been that it happened because of her near regeneration. He walked over to her, taking her hands in his own, halting her movements, "There's something I need to tell you," he stated, pulling her attention away from the console, "You were worried that I would Link to you before I was ready to let go and move on, yeah?" she nodded, frowning, unsure of where this was going, "I was ready to Link to you, and I mean consciously ready to Link to you, after Midnight."
Her eyes widened in shock, "What?"
"Just before you woke up on the TARDIS, I was about to take off the Filter."
Her hand reached for the necklace she still wore despite the fact it was utterly destroyed, the small glass shattered, the sand having run out. He reached out as well and traced it, he'd have to get her a new necklace, he just couldn't picture her without one.
"But…" she began, but the Doctor interrupted.
"I didn't want to lose you," he told her, "God, how I didn't want to lose you," he took a breath, "It forced me to realize quite a few things about how I felt about you though and I realized, I love you, so much, the only thing I wanted was to see you happy, to be the cause of your happiness, to see you safe, to love you, to be Linked to you forever."
She let out a breath, actually falling back onto the captain's chair as he knelt down to continue speaking to her.
"I actually tried to take the Filter off a few times in Shan Shen," he admitted with a grin, "Guess I'm not that good at being sneaky yet."
She laughed, before shaking her head, "But…Rose…"
He sighed, "I was happy to see her. As happy as I am to see any other companion of mine…maybe a bit more. But there's something else I need you to understand," Evy looked at him, "When I was in the Vault, and Martha and Jack were on screen ready and willing to blow up everything…" he shook his head, on the verge of being disgusted but unable to muster such an emotion against his companions, "She was impressed with them, she was as willing as they were…and I realized then…Rose, she wasn't the same Rose I remembered, she was different…"
Evy opened her mouth to argue but the Doctor held up his hand.
"It wasn't the connection of the Link influencing me," he assured her, "It was a fact. I know how I thought of Rose, how I remembered her, and what I remembered didn't match up with what was before me or with what Donna told us about in the parallel world, what she'd gotten Donna to do. It's like…" he trailed, trying to find the words, "It's like having a friend who moves away, and you remember all the great aspects of them, and when you meet again, it's different, they're different, you're different. I think…I think I idealized Rose in my mind when she left, I remembered only the best parts of her, the great things she did for me, how human she was…but that's just it. She was human, will all their flaws and weaknesses. She couldn't see the big picture of destroying the Earth," he smiled up at her, "Not like you could. You told me, when I was saying I couldn't choose the Earth over you, that you would make me pick the Earth, you could no more see it destroyed than I could. You couldn't even destroy the Daleks, like I couldn't. Humans…they're all rash and guns blazing and ignorant of how amazing they are."
He squeezed her hands, "They are amazing. Rose was amazing too. But she wasn't the same Rose I cared for and I realized that then," he reached forward and rested his head against her's, opening his mind to her, showing her exactly what he'd realized at that moment when Martha and Jack had made their threats.
He was telling the truth. He realized that Rose was different than how he remembered, but that so was he. He took her to the moment he saw Rose again, realizing at the sight of her, that he'd moved on and let go quite a while ago and that, while happy to know Rose was alive and well, he hadn't felt the way he felt before. And that was before the Link.
Evy opened her eyes, looking straight into the Doctor's, seeing all the love he had for her shining through at her. She could feel the Link humming between them, fully reciprocated, finally, she could feel what he felt for her. He truly had fallen in love with her before the Link had even been established, all it had done, was solidify his feelings, make them stronger, connect them on a more intimate level. She felt her breath catch in her throat, he felt the same way as her, he loved her. He really did.
She reached out, laying a hand on his cheek, he leaned into her palm, still looking straight at her.
"All your companions promise you forever," she said quietly, afraid that speaking louder would ruin the moment, "But they always leave…" she smiled softly, leaning forward, "But I'm not just a companion, and I won't ever leave you…for forever."
And with that she pressed her lips to his, dropping her mental barriers as she did.
The stories were wrong.
The first kiss between those Linked was far more amazing.
To be continued...in...Together At Last!
A/N: Woo! FINALLY! Right? The Doctor finally Links to Evy! And it's a romantic one! Yay!
I'm just going to say this before my A/N really gets going...since I've been posting 1 chapter per episode for 2-parter episodes I'm NOT going to post Together At Last today like I did with the end of THLOT and this one. I originally meant for each chapter to be a half of an episode, so it would be like the end/start of the series would be equal to one full episode. Since we have one full episode (and it's like twice as long as some of my whole chapters lol) I'm going to hold off on the start of TAL. It will definitely be up tomorrow with the start of The Next Doctor though, give you some time to recover from this uber long chappy :)
On with the A/N:
I've slowly been making the Doctor more and more ok with Rose being trapped in the parallel world. Evy, in a way, is healing him from that loss much like Rose healed the 9th Doctor from the war. And, much like with 9, he's slowly been falling for her in the process. This series was about building a foundation for a relationship between the two outside the Link. Almost like it's proving to Evy that it isn't the Link making him love her, but just him, the Link just makes them more connected. I honestly don't know if there would be a case on Gallifrey where a partial Link was in place for so long as well as having the un-Linked party able to get to know their Link before Linking. Oh Doctor and Evy, you never play by the rules do you? lol. This idea of love before Link will actually come up again...oh in Series 6? :)
I hope it was believable how the Doctor reacted to Rose. He does love her in a way, but as a companion, like Sarah Jane. He's really been slowly realizing that nothing could have really happened with Rose, being human, and that the understanding and the empathy he shares with Evy he'd never have had with Rose. Evy understands the laws of time, the pain of their losses from the war, the difficulty of the responsibility the last Time Lords have. I doubt that, even if Rose had become an old woman with the Doctor, she would have been able to understand even a fraction of that. If she stayed with the Doctor, her family would be gone in the parallel world, but her people, the humans, and her planet, the Earth, would still be there. She'd never seen war, destruction, death on that scale. She'd never be able to grip a true understanding of the complexities of time and fixed points the way the Doctor could.
I hope the little twist with Evy staying in the Crucible was believable. In the episode, I think the magnatron was only hit once, but here it was hit quite a bit, which would make it more damaged than in the episode, and that would have more severe and quicker consequences than in the show. And of course, you have to have just a little terror and angst when in a relationship with the Doctor eh? I also hope that the twist with Evy's regeneration energy being the thing that creates meta-Doctor was ok too. I've mentioned it when talking of the Link that it means the Time Lords are compatible, doesn't just mean in mind or personality. In a way, it's even more of a connection that the Time Lords who are Linked are the only ones who can bear the regeneration energy, be there with you, at your side, as you're dying and regenerating. So the energy had to be compatible as well.
And woo! Evy put Rose in her place! It definitely wasn't as dark/angry as the Doctor vs. Rose in the Academic Series, but I think Evy did alright, using her words and common sense about the Doctor to make Rose realize that she really wasn't doing anything for love, at least not because the Doctor loved her or even her 'love' for him. She was doing it because she wanted to, not because she thought the Doctor would. The Doctor clearly wanted her to stay with her family but Rose came back, he clearly wouldn't have wanted Donna to die for him, Rose had no qualms with it. She needed to point out to Rose that she loved what the Doctor offered her and not the Doctor himself. Once she realized that, she got the Doctor without the adventure, the human-Doctor :)