Part I: Getting There Is Half the Trouble


"Are we there yet?" Jenny asked. She sat atop the brass rail that encircled the control area. She rocked back and forth, hands gripping the rail to keep from falling. The slender girl with long blonde hair was clad in a paramilitary uniform.

"No. I'm... looking at something," the Doctor said. He flipped back and forth through charts on the monitor. He wore his usual Cambridge professor outfit.

"What your father means," River Song said, "is that he's lost." She sat cross-legged on the floor. A silicone cloth was spread before her and the pieces of her field-stripped alpha meson blaster were laid out on it. She was clad in a Little Black Dress and high leather boots. She tossed her thick, curly hair back and peered through the barrel of the blaster.

"I am not lost," the Doctor snapped. He paused on a chart, stared at it for a moment, then flipped to a different chart.

"So, where are we, sweetie?" River asked.

"We're right... here," the Doctor finished. He waved his hands around to indicate the general expanse of time and space.

River gave Jenny a knowing look, and mouthed, "Lost."

"You know," Jenny said, "if you had stolen a newer model TARDIS, instead of this old heap, the navigation systems might work better."

"Sexy... er, she... is not an 'old heap,'" the Doctor said, with a glare. "And I didn't steal her. I borrowed her."

"So," Jenny said, "planning on taking it back, soon?"

"Well, Gallifrey is time-locked, so I can't exactly drop by and return her, can I?"

Jenny gave River a knowing look, and mouthed, "Stolen."

"I'm hungry," Susan Foreman said as she walked into the control room. The brunette was clad in a moddish sixties dress and sandals.

The Doctor said, "It would be a lot easier for me to figure out where and when we are, I mean, figure out the best route to take, we're not lost, don't worry, just... misplaced... but it would be a lot easier to figure it out if everyone didn't keep interrupting me."

"But I'm hungry," Susan said. "Can we get some food?"

"Go to the galley and make something, if you're hungry," the Doctor grumped.

"Oh, I'm sick of galley food," Susan said.

"So am I," River and Jenny said in unison.

"Can't we just stop somewhere?" Susan asked.

"We can't stop somewhere," River said, "because your grandfather doesn't know where we are."

"Yes I do! We are not lost!"

"We're lost," River and Jenny said in unison.

"Look," the Doctor said. He straightened up and glared at the three women. "I am this close to turning the TARDIS around and going home."

"You can't," Susan said, "Gallifrey is time-locked."

"I did not mean literally!"

"Oh, for God's sake," River said. She assembled the pieces of her blaster with a deft and rapid hand. Then she stood and holstered it on her hip. "I will take care of this."

"Shooting dad might be a little excessive," Jenny said.

"I'm not going to shoot him," she said. She crossed to the hexagonal panel and began to work the controls.

"Hey, hey," the Doctor said. He pointed a finger at River's back. "You do not play with a man's controls without asking!"

"Ew," Jenny and Susan said in unison.

"That's not what you said last night, sweetie," River said, giving him a sly grin over her shoulder.

"Eeewww," Jenny and Susan said in unison.

"There!" River announced after a few minutes of work. "We're here." She pointed a finger at a spot on a three-dimensional chart that rotated on the monitor display.

"That's what I said," the Doctor objected.

"No," River told him, "you said we were 'here.'" She imitated his earlier waving hands gesture.

"Semantics!" he objected.

River rolled her eyes. "Now we just need to get to our destination."

"Oh, can I drive?" Jenny asked. She hopped off the rail and dashed to the console.

"No," the Doctor said.

"I want to, as well," Susan said. She ran over to the console as well.

"No!" the Doctor said.

"I do think it's time they learned to drive," River said with a saccharine smile.

"I strenuously object to this whole exercise," the Doctor said. He crossed his arms, leaned back against the rail, and glared into the distance.

"Why don't you go do something quiet somewhere, sweetie?" River suggested. "Maybe sort your instant custard collection, or something."

Jenny and Susan found places at the console. "Can we stop and get something to eat?" Susan asked.

"You know what would be great?" Jenny said, "A nice thick steak! With a side of fettuccine alfredo.

"You do all realize we're on our way to dinner," the Doctor said.

"Oh, or a nice big antipasto salad and garlic bread," Susan added.

"A big, fancy dinner..." the Doctor said.

"Yes," River said, "but we can stop somewhere and eat now, and maybe find something to do to help us digest..."

"Something interesting," Susan said.

"Trouble," the Doctor said.

"An adventure," Jenny said.

"Big trouble," the Doctor said.

"Come along, girls. I know a really nice little place in 23rd century Italy. They have steak and pasta and antipasto salad and garlic bread. And," she said, with a wide smile, "if I recall correctly, there were rumors at the time, of a zombie problem in that area of Rome."

"Yes!" Jenny said. She punched a fist into the air.

"Let's go," Susan added with a smile.

"This is the last time I go on a family vacation," the Doctor complained.


"Rory, can you get the door?" Amy Pond shouted. "I'm having... turkey issues."

"Is it a cyber-turkey?" Rory Williams asked as he passed the kitchen.

"No, but it is definitely displaying a bad attitude," she called, "I think it's a zombie turkey, and I... oh, fire!"

Rory stepped back to glance into the kitchen. "Do you need me to..."

"No, no, get the door, I've got the fire extinguisher."

"Getting the door," He straightened his cardigan, ignored the whoosh of a fire extinguisher going off, and opened the front door. "Ignoring the zombie turkey," he muttered. "River!" he said, pleased.

"Dad!"

"Come in, come in, um, all of you." He stepped back and ran a nervous hand through his dark hair.

"How are you doing?" River hugged him.

"Good. We weren't sure you would make it in time for dinner," he said, then asked, "why do you smell like smoke?"

"There was a little fire." The sound of a cast iron skillet striking a turkey over and over rang from the kitchen. "Is mom okay?"

"There's a little fire," Rory said. "Doctor!"

"Rory the Roman!" The Doctor threw his arms around Rory's upper body. "I'm so glad to see you!"

"Um." Rory managed to pat the Doctor on the back with one hand.

"Sorry," the Doctor said, "I'm just so glad to be alive."

"Oh... kay," Rory said. "Why do you have a black eye?"

"There was a fight."

"Die, you bastard, die!" came from the kitchen.

"There's a fight," Rory said, before the Doctor could speak.

"Grandpa!" Jenny hugged Rory.

"Erm," Rory said, wide-eyed. He pointed a finger at her. "Is she..."

"Oh, yes," River said, "dad, this is Jenny, she's the Doctor's genetically extracted, acceleratedly-grown, daughter." She smiled. "Which makes her my step-daughter, and your step-granddaughter."

"Oh. Well, that's... are you wearing a bullet-proof vest?"

"There was some shooting."

"Haha, I've got you now!" issued from the kitchen.

"What's that?" Jenny asked.

"There may be some shooting." Rory held up a finger. "Can you hold on just a minute? I think I might need to go and help Amy a moment."

"Hi!" Susan said as she came in. "Great-grandpa!" She hugged Rory.

"Gaaah," he said.

"The Doctor's granddaughter, so my step-granddaughter, so your step-great-granddaughter. He thought she was trapped in the time-lock on Gallifrey with the rest of the Time Lords, but it turned out she wasn't."

"Is that a bloodstain on your dress?" Rory asked Susan.

"There were zombies," Susan said.

"I think it's going around," Rory told her.

"I have you now!" came from the kitchen. "Eat falchion, you sneaky..." Things went silent.

They all turned toward the kitchen. Amy strode out, long red hair a mess around her face. She wore a stained apron over her clothes. In one hand was a mutilated turkey carcass, in the other, a 17th century falchion. Her shoulders heaved with heavy breaths. "I got it!" she said and raised the turkey into the air. Half of the carcass fell to the floor. She looked down at it, then back up. "River! Doctor!" She dropped the turkey and the sword. Rory winced as the falchion imbedded tip-first in the floorboards. Amy ran up and hugged River and the Doctor with a wide embrace.

"Mom," River said and kissed her on the cheek.

Hello," the Doctor said.

Amy stepped back and said, blank, "And... other women who I don't know."

Rory gestured to Jenny. "Jenny, the Doctor's genetically..." He glanced at River.

"Genetically extracted, acceleratedly-grown, daughter," she supplied.

"River's step-daughter, our step-granddaughter." He gestured to Susan. "And this is Susan. The Doctor's granddaughter, River's step-granddaughter, our step-great-granddaughter."

"Wow," Amy said, "okay." She embraced the two girls. "So, little issue with the turkey," she said as they parted. "Also, the cranberry sauce, yams, um..."

"What happened?" the Doctor asked.

"There was a fire, a fight, almost some shooting, zombie turkey. You know."

"What are we going to do for Christmas dinner, then?" Rory asked.

"I know this great place in 23rd century Italy," River suggested. 'They have steak and pasta and antipasto salad and garlic bread."

"But!" Jenny said with a finger in the air, "No fires, fights, shooting, or anything like that."

"And they're fresh out of zombies," Susan said.

"It's in Rome," the Doctor said, "which oddly enough, is still standing."

"What do you say, mom?" River asked Amy.

"Oh, sure." She took off the apron and dropped it onto the turkey. "It's absolutely better than the alternative, believe me."

"I'll drive," the Doctor said with a firm voice.

"He's just jealous because we're better at it," River told Rory and Amy.

"Come along, then, Ponds," the Doctor said.