The End of Time (Part Two)
The Doctor and Evy had been overpowered by the sheer number of Masters in the room. They'd been surrounded and pulled away to an office where the Doctor had been strapped to a sort of wheeled chair, gag over his mouth, another strap holding his head back as well as his arms and legs, bound everywhere. Evy had been pulled to a simple chair, tied with ropes, her mouth unbound though her arms had been pulled behind her. She was in a similar state as Wilf, sitting on the other end of the room. Evy looked around, the Doctor was to her left, Wilf to her right and her brother standing across from her, leaning against a desk.
"Now then, I've got a planet to run," the Master grinned at the Doctor before turning look around at his duplicates, "Is everybody ready?"
"6,727,949,338 versions of us awaiting orders," the Master/Joshua replied.
The Master looked impressed with his own skills, smirking at the Doctor and Evy.
"This is Washington," the Master/President reported, "As President of the United States, I can transfer all the United Nations protocols to you immediately, putting you in charge of all the Earth's defenses."
"Unit H.Q. Geneva reporting," the Master/UNIT announced, grinning, "All under your command, sir."
"And this is the Central Military Commission here in Beijing, sir!" the Master/Chinese General replied. The Master winked at Wilf who looked startled, "With over 2.5 million soldiers, sir! Present arms!"
A video of Masters in Chinese military uniforms came up, all standing in front of the Forbidden City, all presenting arms.
"Enough soldiers and weapons to turn this planet into a warship," the Master exclaimed, "Nothing to say?" he looked at the Doctor with mock concern, "Doctor? What's that?" he moved over to him as though worried, "Pardon? Sorry?"
"Leave him alone!" Evy called.
"You let him go, you swine!" Wilf shouted, angry.
The Master sighed, "Oh, your dad's still kicking up a fuss," he nodded over at Wilf.
"Yeah?" Wilf glared, defiant, "Well, I'd be proud if I was!"
The Master held a finger to his lips, "Hush now! Listen to your Master!" he glared at Wilf threateningly and turned away, when a phone rang. He stiffened, looking at the Doctor questioningly, only to notice he was staring at Wilf. He turned around to look at the old man, stunned, "But that's a mobile!"
Wilf chucked awkwardly, "Yeah, it's mine. Let me turn it off."
"No, no, no, no, no, no," he walked over to him, "I don't think you understand. Everybody on this planet is me. And I'm not phoning you, so who the hell is that?"
"Nobody, I tell you, it's nothing, it's probably one of them ring back calls," Wilf tried to persuade him as the man pawed through Wilf's coat.
"Ooh, look at this!" the Master held up a gun to show the Doctor, who looked startled, before turning to Wilf, "Good man!" he tossed the gun away and continued to go through Wilf's pockets, trying to find the phone. He whipped it out, staring down at the name, "'Donna.' Who's Donna?"
"Leave her alone," Evy hissed at him.
The Master just smirked at her and activated the phone, holding it up, "Gramps, don't hang up, you've gotta help me!" Donna's voice came over the line, tearful and terrified, "I ran out! Everyone was changing!"
"Who is she?" the Master asked quietly, "Why didn't she change?"
"Gramps, I can't hear you."
"Well, it was this thing that happened on one of their adventures," Wilf nodded at them, "The meta-crisis."
"Oh, he loves playing with Earth girls!" the Master glared at the Doctor disdainfully as the Doctor stared aback, anxious.
"Are you there?" Donna asked, "Can you still hear me?"
"Find her!" the Master ordered to the other hims, "Trace the call!"
"Trace the call!" the Master/Joshua called.
"Are you still there?" Donna gasped.
Evy scrunched her eyes closed, 'Donna!' she called, following the thin connection that had formed between her mind and Donna's from the meta-crisis.
"Can you hear me?" Donna wept.
'Donna!' she shouted, connecting, 'Hang up the phone!'
The Master turned the phone to speaker and held it up to Wilf, "Say goodbye to the freak, granddad!"
Wilf opened his mouth to speak when…
"Evy?" Donna gasped, "Is that you? Where are you?"
The three men looked over to see Evy sitting with her head bowed, face scrunched in pain as she forced her brainwaves into a different pattern, 'Donna, you need to get out of there!'
The Master glared at her, striding over, his hand raised to stop her. The Doctor's eyes widened as he struggled in his restraints, fearing the man might hit her, but then the Master curled his hand into a fist, lowering his arm…he wouldn't strike her, not again, never again.
"She's on Wessex Lane, Chiswick," the Master/Joshua called, "Everyone on Wessex Lane, red alert."
'Donna you've got to run,' she called urgently, 'They're after you!'
"What do I do?" Donna shouted over the phone.
Donna gasped over the phone, "There's more of them! They're everywhere!"
'Donna, I can help, but I need access to your mind.'
"What do I do?" Donna cried.
'I can connect. I can use the meta-crisis connectino and work through you, I can save you. But you need to let me in!'
"Do it!" Donna shouted over the phone.
Evy reached out touching her mind to Donna's, sending a pulse through their connection. A pulse of golden energy flew out of Donna, knocking out not only her…but all the Masters who had surrounded her.
Evy slumped over in her seat, spent.
The Doctor jolted, wanting to go to her despite the Link telling him she was alright. He'd followed her plans in her mind, it was dangerous, it was risky, it could have killed both her and Donna…if it had been anyone but Evy attempting it, he would have been afraid. But not her, she seemed to regularly do the impossible.
The Master jumped up and ran to Evy's side, taking her head in his hands, trying to see if she was alright, all he knew was that she was alive.
"What was that?" Wilf asked, eyeing the woman, concerned not only for her but for Donna who had gone silent over the phone.
The Master turned to glare at the Doctor, who just sat there obviously grinning, pride in his eyes as he looked at Evy. He strode over to his rival and yanked the gag off, "That's better!" the Doctor grinned, "Hello! But really, did you think Evy would leave our best friend without a defense mechanism?" he raised an eyebrow and stared at the Master, "She's your sister, you should know by now she's very good at backup plans."
The Master sneered at him. He should have known, it seemed that ability hadn't changed despite her regenerations, even as a child she always had a way to get out of trouble, always taking into consideration things that could go wrong.
The Doctor nearly laughed, adding one final touch, "It was a 3-way meta-crisis," he nodded over at Evy as the Master's eyes widened, looking at his sister in concern.
"Doctor?" Wilf asked, "What happened?"
"She's alright. She's fine, they both are. Promise, Evy just put her to sleep for a bit."
"Tell me, where's your TARDIS?" the Master demanded softly.
"You could be so wonderful," the Doctor commented lightly.
"Where is it?"
The Doctor just shook his head, "You're a genius. Stone cold brilliant, you are. I swear, you really are! But you could be so much more…" he sighed, almost longing, for a better future for his one-time friend, for his Link's brother, "You can be beautiful with a mind like that. We can travel the stars. You, me, and Evy. It would be my honor. 'Cos you don't need to own the Universe, just see it. To have the privilege of seeing all of time and space...that's ownership enough."
The Master hesitated, swallowing hard, tempted, "Would it stop then? The noise in my head?"
"I can help. Evy and I, we can both help…oh the remarkable things we've done together…I don't doubt we could help."
He shook his head, eyes filled with tears, sounding almost scared now, "Don't know what I'd be without that noise."
"My brother again," Evy's voice called over to them. They looked over to see her awake, pale from the strain, but awake.
The Master smiled a bit at her, going over to stand by her, hesitating before he put a hand on her shoulder.
The Doctor looked at them, thoughtful, "I wonder what I'd be without you…" he looked at the Master, but they could both tell he meant Evy as well.
It was almost scary to think…if he'd never known the Master, he'd never have had half his adventures, he'd never have known his Link existed…Evy would have never met him…he never would have met Evy…and if he'd never met her...he shuddered to think about how cold, hard, and possibly monstrous he could be right now if he hadn't had Evy to ground him or pull him back, to save him all those times…
"Yeah," the Master nodded, sniffling.
"What does he mean?" Wilf asked after a moment, "What noise?"
The Master turned, walking slowly towards Wilf, none of the madness that had been present moments ago there, it was almost like he was Terrin again, "It began on Gallifrey…" he told the man, "As children. Not that you'd call it childhood!" he walked over to look out the window, the Doctor and Evy looking at each other wich concern, before he turned and sat on the desk, "More a life of duty," he glanced at Evy, knowing that, as one of the inspired, she was more attuned to the Vortex, more ruled by the laws of Gallifrey. He looked back at Wilf, "Eight years old. I was taken for initiation. To stare into the Untempered Schism."
"What does that mean?"
"It's a gap in the fabric of reality," the Doctor sighed, "You can see into the Time Vortex itself."
"And it hurts," Evy breathed, both Time Lords looked over at her sorrowfully for a moment, those who were inspired, their bodies and minds had to attune to the Vortex…it literally could twist their mind to merge with it…it hurt like hell.
The Master looked away, angry and bitter at how his family had had to suffer for the Vortex, for the traditions of their people. He had been driven mad, his sister had been in pain for weeks after seeing the Vortex…
"They took me there," the Master nearly spat, his thoughts turning dark again, "In the dark. We looked into time, old man. And I heard it. Calling to me. Drums. The never-ending drums," Evy didn't bother to tell him he'd claimed it was a heartbeat before he'd died…if what she'd heard echoing in the Doctor's head was anything to go by, it was a deafening drumbeat by now, so much worse than before, "Listen to it…" he looked over at Evy, who watched him sadly, to the Doctor, who eyed him with one eyebrow raised, "Listen!"
"Then let's find it," the Doctor said hopefully, "You and me and Evy."
"Except…" he began, realization lighting up his eyes, "Oh. Oh, wait a minute! Oh, yes! Oh, that's good!"
"What?" Evy asked, now very worried.
"What is?" the Doctor eyed him.
"The noise exists within my head," the Master grinned, "And now within six billion heads! Everyone on Earth can hear it! Imagine…oh! Oh, yes!" he began laughing as the two of them watched him, concerned about this bout of insanity. His face flashed to a blue skeletal figure before he sank to his knees.
"The Gate wasn't enough!" Evy cried, struggling in her seat, "You're dying!"
"This body was born out of death. All it can do is die," he straightened up, something striking him, "But what did you say to me? Back in the wasteland? You said the end of time."
"We said something is returning," the Doctor said pleadingly, the slim hope of breaking through to him shining in his eyes, "We were shown a prophecy. That's why we need your help!"
The Master just pointed at himself, "What if I'm part of it? Don't you see? The drumbeat is calling from so far away! From the end of time itself! And now it's been amplified six billion times! Triangulate all those signals! I could find its source! Oh, that's what your prophecy was…me!"
Evy frowned, watching him, sounding more utterly insane than he ever had before, even if he might have had a point. He was just so desperate…
"Where's the TARDIS?" the Master threatened again.
"Just stop," the Doctor begged, "Just think!"
"Kill him!" the Master ordered, pointing at Wilf.
A guard stepped forward, clicking the safety off his gun as he marched over to Wilf, the Master following the guard till he got to Wilf's side.
"I need that technology, Doctor!" the Master shouted, "Tell me where it is, or the old man is dead."
"Don't tell him!" Wilf shouted defiantly.
'Doctor,' Evy called to him quietly, 'That guard…he's taller than the Master.'
The Doctor eyed the guard critically as the Master shouted, "I'll kill him right now!"
Wilf tensed, staring at the Master, but the Doctor just smiled, seeing Evy was correct, oh he loved how she noticed these things, "Actually, the most impressive thing about you is that, after all this time, you're still bone dead stupid."
Evy barely managed to hide her snort, but not her smile.
The Master rolled his neck, staring at the Doctor, "Take aim."
The Doctor rolled his eyes, "You've got six billion pairs of eyes, but you still can't see the obvious, can you?"
"Like what?" the Master sneered.
"If everyone is you, exactly like you," Evy replied, "Then why's that guard taller?"
The Master turned back sharply to look at the guard who just swung the rifle butt against him, knocking him out.
The guard pulled off his helmet to reveal the tall alien from before, "Oh my God, I hit him! I've never hit anyone in my life!"
The door to the room flew open as Addams ran in, "Well, come on!" she ran to Wilf's chair and pulled out a knife to cut the bonds, "We need to get out of here fast!"
The second alien ran over to Evy, snapping the ropes around her hands and running to the Doctor, leaving her to pull the rest of the ropes off.
"God bless the Cactuses," Wilf breathed.
"That's Cacti!" the Doctor called.
"That's racist!" the second alien replied, struggling with the bonds that held the Doctor.
"This prophecy of yours, Doctor," one of the Master's voices came over the video, "Where did it come from? Doctor?"
"Come on!" Addams shouted, pulling the last of Wilf's ropes off, "We've got to get out!"
"There's too many buckles and straps!" the other alien called, struggling as the Doctor did as well.
"No!" the Doctor shouted as the other alien followed the orders, "No! No! Get me out! No! Don't! Don't!"
The aliens ignored him as they pushed him past the Master and also in front of the camera just as Evy got her ropes off.
"What's going on?" a Master on screen called, "Doctor!"
They rolled him out into the hall and down it, "Which way?" the other alien shouted.
"This way!" Addams strode ahead of them, leading the way.
"Oh, no, no, no, no, no!" the Doctor shouted, "The other way! Other way! Back to my TARDIS!"
"I know what I'm doing!"
"No, no, no, no. Just…just listen to me!"
And then they came to the stairs.
"Not the stairs," he mumbled, "Not the stairs!"
Addams ran down the stairs with the other alien pushing the Doctor down, Wilf bringing up the rear with Evy who couldn't push her way close enough to the Doctor to sonic him free.
"No!" he jolted in pain as he hit the stairs repeatedly, "Worst rescue ever!"
"Oh be quiet!" Evy shouted up to him, "At least it is a rescue!"
"Just…just stop and listen to me!" the Doctor called as they reached the basement. They wheeled him into the lab just as the Master/guards rushed in on opposite sides, trapping them. They prepared to fire as the Master appeared, grinning.
"Gotcha!" he laughed.
"You think so?" Addams smirked, bringing up her watch and pressing it even as the Doctor protested.
They were transported up into the Vinvocci ship, the Doctor still strapped to the chair, bouncing and struggling to get himself free.
"Now get me out of this thing!" the Doctor shouted as Evy ran forward to the teleport controls, knowing it was far more important to disable them and keep the Master from following than freeing the Doctor at the moment.
"Don't say thanks, will you?" Addams asked, annoyed.
"The Master won't let us go!" Evy shouted back, flashing her sonic, trying to disable the controls.
"Just hurry up and get me out!" the Doctor yelled. Wilf looked around, completely stunned at the sight of the Earth out the window, "Come on!"
"Oh, my goodness me!" Wilf breathed, "We're in space!"
"Get me out!"
"Alright!" Addams rolled her eyes and moved to help her partner.
"Get a move on!" the bonds loosened and he pulled himself out.
"Almost…" Evy stepped back and flashing the sonic, sending off a shower of sparks within the controls.
"Brilliant!" the Doctor ran over to her, picking her up in a hug to spin her around a moment before turning back to the aliens, "Where's your flight deck?"
"But we're safe!" Addams shook her head, "We're a hundred thousand miles above the Earth!"
"That doesn't matter when every single missile on Earth is ready to fire at us!" Evy countered.
Addams's eyes widened in shock, not having thought of that, "Good point!" she ran off, leading them to the flight deck. Evy stopped short, turning back to grab Wilf and tug him out of the room.
"But we're in space!" he muttered weakly, pointing at the window.
"Yeah," Evy nodded.
Wilf chuckled and followed her out of the room, running along till they caught up with the Doctor and the aliens, running through the ship.
"We've got to close it down!" the Doctor shouted as they reached the control room.
The second alien ran to the computers, "No chance, mate. We're going home!"
"We're just a salvage team!" Addams argued, "Local politics has got nothing to with us. Not unless it's a carnival. The sooner we get back to Vinvocci space, the better."
The Doctor glanced over his shoulder at them, "We're not leaving!" he aimed his sonic at the computer which exploded, sending the entire ship lurching backwards as the power died down with an electronic whine. The lights began to turn off rapidly along with the engines.
The Doctor put away his sonic, standing very still before putting his finger to his lips, "Shh, shh, shh, shh, shh, shh, shh, shh, shh, shh."
Everyone looked around, tense, hoping that they wouldn't be discovered. A few moments later, when they were sure they were safe, the Doctor breathed a sigh of relief.
The second alien ran to the controls, flicking the switches, but the machine remained dead.
Addams looked out the window a moment before turning back to them all, "No sign of any missiles. No sign of anything! You've wrecked the place!"
"The engines are burned out," the other one called, "All we've got is auxiliary lights…" he turned them on, "Everything else is kaput. We can't move. We're stuck in orbit."
Addams turned to the Doctor and Evy, glaring at them, "Thanks to you. You idiots!"
Evy blinked as the woman stormed off and looked over at the Doctor, a bit amused, "Well that's a first…no one really calls me the idiot."
Wilf stepped up to them, "Yeah, I know you two, though. I bet you've got a plan, haven't you?"
Evy smiled gently at the man, "Oh Wilf, there's never a plan with him."
He chuckled and turned to the Doctor, "But you've always got a trick up your sleeve! A nice little bit of the ol' 'Doctor flim-flam ha ha' sort of thing! Hey?" he frowned, seeing the Doctor's hopeless look, "Oh blimey."
"Well," Evy brushed her hands together, "Then it's my turn is it?" the men looked at her, confused, she just smiled, "I've yet to come across something you've broken that I couldn't fix."
He smiled at her, "What about that one toaster in 1969?"
She laughed, "You obliterated that one, nothing left of it to fix but this…" she looked around, "I do love me a challenge," she walked over to the controls, kneeling down and sliding under them to get to work.
The Doctor just smiled after her, watching her, always lifting his spirits when he needed her to most. He laughed softly to himself before turning and getting to work on some wires by the navigation system in the center of the room.
Wilf looked around, seeing he wouldn't be of much use and decided he was going to walk around, finally explore an alien ship!
The two Time Lords had worked in easy silence for a while, both asking opinions of the other when they came to a tricky bit of work.
The Doctor sighed as he fiddled with various wires and cables, glancing at the Earth every so often as though to reassure himself that it was still there, when something caught his eye…
"Evy?" he called, standing up and walking over to the window.
"Yeah?" she popped her head up.
She frowned, seeing a streak in the sky as she moved around the system and over to his side, "What is it?"
"I don't know," he shook his head, "But I think we'd best get back to Earth, quickly."
She nodded and they both ran back to their self appointed stations, getting to work.
The door slid open only minutes later as Wilf hesitantly walked in, "Aye aye. Got this old tub mended?"
"Just trying to fix the heating," the Doctor replied, nodding over his shoulder, "Evy's doing all the hard stuff."
Wilf chuckled, sitting down near the Doctor but he could see Evy lying underneath the computer controls from there, "I've always dreamt of a view like that," he commented, waving at the window. They glanced over at Wilf, smiling a little as he celebrated where he was, "He he! I'm an astronaut!" he pointed down at the planet, "There's dawn over England, look! Brand new day…" he paused, his smile fading, "My wife's buried down there. I might never visit her again now," Wilf turned to them, "D'you think he changed them? In their graves?"
The Doctor looked away, regret in his voice, "I'm sorry."
Wilf shook his head, "No, not your fault."
"Isn't it?" he sighed.
But then he felt someone sit down beside him. He looked over to see Evy there, leaning against him, her head on his shoulder as she reached out and took his hand, "If you're going to do that…I'm going to say it's OUR fault you know," he opened his mouth to say something when she spoke again, "And don't bother arguing...women are always right. Eh Wilf?"
Wilf smiled fondly at the young woman, "That they are," he laughed, tears in his eyes, "Never once won an argument against my wife, not once," he looked back at the Earth, getting lost in his thoughts, "1948, I was over there. End of the mandate in Palestine. Private Mott. Skinny little idiot I was. Stood on this rooftop…" the Doctor pulled off his specs, a sad look on his face as the story brought up his own recollections of Gallifrey, of the war, but Evy just squeezed his hand again, "In the middle of a skirmish. Like a blizzard, all them bullets in the air. The world gone mad. Heh. Yeah, you don't wanna listen to an old man's tales, do you?"
"We're older than you," Evy told him.
"Get away," he waved them off.
"I'm 906," the Doctor told him, calmly, amused.
"What really though?" Wilf's eyes widened.
"I'm 882," Evy added.
"Eight hundr…nine hundred years! We must look like insects to you."
"We think you look like giants," the Doctor replied, truth in his eyes. Humans really were the most incredible species.
Wilf reached into his pocket, pulling out his gun, holding it out to the Doctor, "Listen, I…I want you to have this. I kept it all this time, and I thought…"
The Doctor folded his arms, drawing back into Evy's warmth, shaking his head, "No."
"No but…if you take it, you could…"
"No," he said firmly.
Wilf lowered the gun and stared at it.
"I saw you with that in the mansion," Evy commented, understanding, "You had the chance to shoot the Master, but you didn't."
"Too scared, I s'pose," Wilf admitted, almost embarrassed.
"That, Wilfred, is nothing to be ashamed of."
The Doctor looked at Wilf seriously, "I'd be proud."
"Of what?" Wilf asked, confused.
"If you were my dad," the Doctor answered, teary eyed.
Evy smiled softly at them, squeezing the Doctor's arm. She knew the Doctor's father on Gallifrey, he wasn't the most understanding, supportive father in the world. He was a rather rigid figure, a typical Time Lord, lived and breathed their laws. He always gave the impression he was embarrassed by the Doctor, by his adventures and disregard for the rules…if he could only see him now…see all the amazing things he'd done…
"Now come on," Wilf began as the Doctor and Evy smiled at him, "Don't start…" he pressed a finger to his mouth, thinking hard, "But you said…you were told 'he will knock four times' and then you die. Well, that's him, isn't it? The Master? The noise," he tapped his head, "In his head. The Master is gonna kill you."
Evy flinched at the thought of her brother killing her Link and the Doctor tightened his grip on her hand.
"Yeah," the Doctor sighed, almost accepting.
"Then kill him first," Wilf offered him the gun.
"That's how he started," Evy whispered, voice thick with emotion.
Wilf lowered the gun, recalling that the Master was Evy's brother…how hard this situation must be on her…either her brother, half mad, would try to take over the world and kill a man she obviously loved, or her love would kill her brother…either way…she would lose.
"It's not like we're innocent," the Doctor began, holding onto Evy, "We've both taken lives," he swallowed hard, tears in his own, "But I got worse, I got clever…manipulated people into taking their own…"
Evy reached out and hugged him, resting her head against the side of his face, reassuring him.
"Sometimes I think the Time Lord lives too long," he sighed, feeling the warmth and love radiating from Evy, soothing him. He looked at the gun and shook his head, "I can't, I just can't."
"If the Master dies, what happens to all the people?" Wilf asked, helpless.
"I don't know."
"Doctor, what happens?"
"The template would snap," Evy replied.
"What, they go back to being human?" Wilf looked at them as they nodded, "They're alive? And human? Then don't you dare!" he cried, suddenly furious and bitter, "Don't you dare put him before them! Now you take this. That's an order, Doctor. Take the gun. You take the gun and save your life," he held the gun out, pressing it into the Doctor's hand, tearfully, "And please don't die, you're the most wonderful man on Earth. I don't want you to die."
"Neither do I," Evy whispered softly, tears in her eyes as well, but she looked at the Doctor meaningfully, "Any part of you."
The Doctor looked at Evy sharply, seeing the understanding in her eyes. If he killed, if he took a life like that, a part of him would die, something that made him who he was would be destroyed. He looked back at Wilf, sympathy in his eyes, but pushed the gun away, "Never."
And then the Master's voice spoke through the ship.
"A star fell from the sky," he spoke. Wilf gasped in shock as Evy and the Doctor looked up, not very surprised to hear him, it was only a matter of time before the Master thought to broadcast on any and all frequencies, "Don't you want to know where from? Because now it makes sense. The whole of my life, my destiny. The star was a diamond. And the diamond is a Whitepoint Star!" the Doctor and Evy stiffened, disturbed and distressed by that little fact, "And I have worked all night to sanctify that gift. Now the Star is mine. I can increase the signal. And use it as a lifeline! D'you get it now? D'you see? Keep watching. This should be spectacular! Over and out."
The Doctor was breathing heavily, strain on his face, his eyes wide with fear while Evy just looked pale and stunned and terribly frightened as they both realize what the Master was planning.
"What's he on about?" Wilf stuttered, "What's he doing? What does that mean?!"
"The Whitepoint Star is only found on one planet," the Doctor swallowed hard, "Gallifrey! Which means…"
"It's the Time Lords," Evy gasped, "The Time Lords are returning!"
"Well, I mean that's good, isn't it?" Wilf asked eagerly, "I mean, that's your people!"
The Doctor reached forward, grabbing the gun, his finger on the trigger, staring at it a moment before leaping to his feet. He slid the gun into his pocket, running for the door with Evy and through the ship to get back to the observation deck just as an echo sounded over the speakers, the four beats, very high-pitched.
"What's that?" Addams asked as the second alien ran for the computers.
"Coming from Earth," the alien told them, "It's on every single wavelength."
They turned to stare at the Earth, the Doctor and Evy breathing heavily, afraid. They waited only a moment more before the shock wore off and they began running back to the control room, trying desperately to fix everything.
"But you said your people were dead!" Wilf called, following them, "Past tense!"
"Yes but inside the Time War," Evy replied, "And the war was time-locked."
"Like sealed in a time bubble," the Doctor added, "It's not a bubble, but just think of a bubble. Nothing can get in or get out of the Time Lock. Don't you see, nothing can get in or get out..."
"Except what was already there," Evy breathed.
"The signal!" Wilf gasped, "Since he was a kid!"
"If they manage to follow the signal, to connect to it, then they can escape just before they die!"
"Well, then, big reunion!" Wilf smiled, "We'll have a party!"
"There will be no party!" the Doctor replied grimly.
Wilf frowned, confused, "But I've heard you talk about your people like they're wonderful!"
"That's how we've chosen to remember them," Evy shook her head, "The Time Lords of old."
"But then they went to war!" the Doctor grimaced, "An endless war! And it changed them. Right to the core. You've seen our enemies, Wilf. The Time Lords are more dangerous than any of them!"
"Time Lords?" Addams asked dismissively, "What Lords? Anyone want to explain?"
"Right, yes, you," he pointed at Addams, "This is a salvage ship, yes? You're trawling the asteroid field for junk?"
"Yeah, what about it?"
"It means you've got asteroid lasers!" Evy shouted as she ran over to a control she'd been working on.
"Yeah, but they're all frazzled," the second alien frowned.
"Not anymore!" she threw a switch and suddenly the doors that led to the lasers flew open.
"You there, what's your name?" the Doctor pointed at Addams again, "We're going to need you on navigation! And you…" he pointed at the second alien, "Get in the laser pod!"
The second alien moved but Addams just stood there. The Doctor lunged at Wilf as Evy worked on bringing up more power in the controls.
"Laser number two," the Doctor told him, "The old soldier's got one more battle."
Wilf tapped his arm and moved to get up, a faint hint of a smile on his face.
"This ship can't move," Addams rolled her eyes, "It's dead."
"Did I forget to mention?" the Doctor turned to her, grinning, "My Link is a genius!"
Evy flipped another switch, two massive ones. The lights turned on with a hum, the engines starting once again.
"But now they can see us!" Addams cried.
"Oh, yes!" the Doctor smiled at Evy who just winked back at him. He ran over to the steering controls, taking hold of it.
"This is my ship and you're not moving it! Step away from the wheel!"
"There's an old Earth saying, Captain," the Doctor countered, making no move to leave, "A phrase of great power and wisdom and consolation to the soul in times of need."
"What's that then?" she rolled her eyes.
"Allons-y!" he shouted, pulling back on the controls. The ship suddenly took off, throwing the aliens and Wilf back as it sped towards Earth, the Doctor fighting with the controls, "Come on!"
The windows glowed gold as they entered the atmosphere of the Earth.
"Look at what you've done!" Addams shouted, "You're…flipping mad!"
"You two, what'd I say?" the Doctor shouted back to Wilf and the alien, "Lasers!"
"What for?" the other alien asked.
"For the missiles!" Evy yelled. The second alien leapt forward and headed for the lasers, leading Wilf with him, "The five of us have to fight the entire planet!"
As though hearing her words, out of nowhere, a score of missiles was picked up on the monitors, "We've got incoming!" Addams shouted.
"You two, open fire!"
The Doctor turned the ship wildly to the right, avoiding the missiles as the two below fought to destroy them.
"Open fire!" she repeated.
"And there's more!" Addams called, "Sixteen of them! Oh! And another sixteen!"
"Then go to the rear gun lasers!" the Doctor yelled back at her. Addams ran from the room to follow the orders, "You two, open fire! Now!"
The lasers fired as the Doctor veered the ship from side-to-side, just managing to avoid the missiles, "No you don't!" he shouted, turning the ship upside down in a full circle as they flew.
"Fire!" Evy called again as two missiles crashed into each other just in front of them. The windows smashed, the glass flying into the room as the Doctor tried to protect himself behind the steering mechanism while Evy ducked behind the controls, "Lock the navigation!"
"On to what?" Addams replied, rushing back to it.
"England! Naismith mansion!"
The Doctor struggled to control the ship as it went speeding over the land, "Destination?" he called back.
"Fifty kliks and rising," Addams reported, "We've locked onto the house! We are going to stop, though?" the Doctor didn't reply, "Doctor? We are going to stop?"
"Doctor?" Wilf called, struggling back into the ship, "Doctor, you said you were gonna die!"
"He said what!"
"But is that all of us? I won't stop you, sir, but is this it?"
Evy pulled herself over to them as the Doctor didn't reply, his expression bitter and sad as he flew the shaking ship. Evy put a hand on Wilf's shoulder, "It's never you," she told him, "Not if we can help it," she smiled, pushing him back so she could stand beside the Doctor as he pushed the ship faster. She put her hands on his, him looking at her. A small smile made its way onto his face as she looked up at him. At the very last second she pulled the controls back with him, flying the ship right up.
Evy knelt on the floor, pulling up a covering from an exit, as the Doctor pulled out the gun. They looked up at Wilf for a long moment before Evy took the Doctor's hand and they jumped out of the ship. They fell through the air, crashing through a glass domed ceiling in the Naismith mansion, landing heavily on the floor between the Master and the newly resurrected Time Lords, a small group of five. There were two guards in the back, two weeping women before them, with President Rassilon himself standing before all.
The Doctor groaned as he landed on his stomach, Evy hissed in pain as she fell onto her back, her head hitting the floor hard.
The Master uncovered his face, looking stunned and disbelieving at the sight of the Doctor and his sister on the ground before him. He quickly turned to his duplicates, "Get her!"
Three Master/guards ran over and hauled Evy to her feet, ignoring her cries of pain from the sudden movement, pulling her back from the Doctor who was reaching weakly for her. They half dragged her across the room, pulling out a set of handcuffs and locking both her arms above her around a piece of equipment, keeping her tied there, away from the Doctor.
The Doctor winced in agony as he tried to reach for Evy again, only to drop from the effort. He took a breath, curling his fingers round the gun, trying to raise his arm at the Lord President of Gallifrey, but he couldn't hold his arm up, it fell down as he almost collapsed, gasping for breath.
He could feel Evy's pain radiating in him from the fall as he was sure his own had reached her, but so far, she was safe and alive and that was enough reassurance for him to get his bearings and gather his strength.
"My Lord Doctor," the President stepped forward, glaring at the Doctor scornfully, "My Lord Master," he smiled at the Master before his gaze hardened, landing on Evy, "My Lady Evelyn," he sneered, "We are gathered for the end."
The Doctor and Evy looked over at the President with agony and misery, helpless in their pain as the Master looked on, proud. The Doctor struggled to get up, his face cut and bleeding, his suit in tatters. He glanced back at Evy to see her just as bad as him, her beautiful face cut and her arms bruised from the fall, her dress torn, her knees scrapped, her lip bleeding. He turned back to the President, crying out desperately, "Listen to me! You can't!"
"It is a fitting paradox that our salvation comes at the hand of our most infamous child!" the President replied, ignoring the Doctor.
"Oh, he's not saving you!" Evy called, her voice hoarse from pain as her brother smirked, "Can't you see what he's doing?"
"Hey, no, hey!" the Master turned to point at her disapprovingly, no one was going to tell his surprise but him, "That's mine! Hush!" he held a finger to his lip to silence her before throwing his arms out wide as he turned to the President, "Look around you. I've transplanted myself into every single human being. Who wants a mongrel little species like them? Because now I can transplant myself into every single Time Lord," he sneered, "Oh, yes, Mr. President, sir! Standing there all noble and resplendent and decrepit. Think how much better you're gonna look as me!"
The Doctor and Evy watched in silence as the President merely raised his left hand, cloaked in a gauntlet that started to glow. The smile vanished from the Master's face as the President opened his hand and released a glow of blue, all the humans began shaking their heads quickly as they had done when turning into the Master.
"No, don't!" the Master called, almost childishly, "No, no, no, stop it, no! No! No, no, no, don't!"
He glared at the President who watched him calmly as every human returned to normal. Evy winced as she twisted to move and look around the room at the humans now standing as themselves again.
"On your knees, mankind!" the President ordered.
Everyone obediently dropped to their knees in fear.
"That…that's fine, that's good, because you said 'salvation,'" the Master turned to the President, almost desperate, "I still saved you! Don't forget that!"
The room began to shake as the President grinned, "The approach begins!"
"The approach of what?" the Master frowned, looking over at the Doctor for answers.
"Something is returning, don't you ever listen?" the Doctor shouted through clenched teeth, "That was the prophecy, not someone, something!"
"What is it?"
"They're not just bringing back our people," Evy shouted, furious with him, he looked sharply over at her, surprised at the level of her anger, "It's Gallifrey! They're restoring the planet!"
The Master's eyes widened at that bit of information.
The Earth shook.
Everyone in the room began to panic and run away as the President watched, a smile on his face. The Doctor pushed himself to his knees, still hunched on the floor in pain, as the Master fell to his own, though his face was alight with victory.
"Aha!" the Master laughed, "I did this! I get the credit! I'm on your side!"
"Go on, get out of the way, get out of the way!" they heard Wilf call as he ran into the room. Someone began pounding on a wall, a scientist still trapped inside one side of the radiation booth.
"Let me out of here!" the scientist called, "Quick! Somebody, please!"
Wilf ran over to him, "Alright! I've got you, mate! I've got you!"
"Wilf, don't!" Evy shouted
"Don't!" the Doctor called.
But Wilf didn't listen, he stepped into the box, hitting the release button, locking himself in as the scientist fled the room. The Doctor dropped his head helplessly, almost in tears, Wilf was trapped.
The room began to shake even more violently as the Master turned to the President, watching Gallifrey appear through the broken glass ceiling, "But this is fantastic, isn't it?" he asked, as though trying to be positive, but both the Doctor and Evy could sense the fear behind his words. He looked down at the Doctor who glared at him, "The Time Lords restored!"
"You weren't there in the final days of the war!" Evy shouted bitterly, he spun to look at her, watching him with tears in her eyes, "You never saw what was born," she broke down into sobs, "You weren't there…" the Master's eyes widened at the sight of his sister reduced to tears because of him, "You left me there to fight alone…you didn't see what happened…who fought, who died, who we lost…"
She looked up at him, straight into his eyes, and showed him her memories of the war. He could see her fighting in the front lines, the death, the destruction…her memory of being called to the Canyons of Eternity, where another platoon had been attacked, to look for survivors they knew they wouldn't find, only to stumble upon the body of their baby cousin Leda…only 107 years old, barely old enough to fight…
He stumbled back, pulling himself from the memories, not wanting to see any more.
"If the time-lock's broken then everything's coming through," the Doctor added, "Not just the Daleks, but the Skaro of Degradations, the Horde of Travesties, the Nightmare Child, the Could-Have-Been-King with his Army of Mean-Whiles and Never-Weres…"
"The war turning to hell!" Evy finished.
The Master looked between them, actually looking startled at the news.
"And that's what you've opened," the Doctor told him, "Right above the Earth. Hell is descending."
The Master smirked, "My kind of world!"
"Just listen! 'Cos even the Time Lords can't survive that!"
"They were planning the final sanction!" Evy shouted, the Master's head snapped to her, eyes wide in horror. She looked up at him sadly, "I had to…" she whispered.
Another set of memories filtered through his mind.
He could see her, being removed from battle after getting word that he'd 'disappeared' after a bombing, assumed dead. He saw her in the general council room, having taken the place of their father, when Rassilon announced his plans for ending the war, for ending all of creation. He saw her telling this to their father, one of the former Presidents. He saw their father showing her 'The Moment' which he'd stolen from one of the Temples where it'd been guarded. He saw her hiding but watching as their father gave 'The Moment' to the Doctor, helpless to stop them from setting their plan to seal the planet in a time-lock in action. He watched, his hearts breaking, as their parents rushed her from her room, escaping the house as Daleks attacked and knowing it was only minutes until the Doctor activated 'The Moment.' He saw through her eyes as their father fell to the Daleks, giving them time to run. He saw their mother, crying, as she led Evy to the Untempered Schism and pushed her through it a moment before she herself was taken down by a Dalek...Evy falling to the Earth...landing with a terrible crash...
He gasped, falling on all fours as the onslaught of memories ceased. His sister had been a part of the time-lock, his own family had helped, had given up everything, to put it in place…and he'd just tarnished their memory by breaking through it…what had he done?
"The end of time will come at my hand!" the President continued, unaware of what had just transpired, what had been revealed, "The rupture will continue until it rips the Time Vortex apart!"
"That's suicide!" the Master said sharply, realizing the madness his family and the Doctor had saved the planet from, what he'd just unleashed.
"We will ascend!" the President threw his arms out, "To become creatures of consciousness alone. Free of these bodies!"
The Doctor looked over at Evy sorrowfully, all their work, all their sacrifices were for nothing…he knew of her hand in the creation of the time-lock plan, he'd seen it when they first Linked…she'd lost everything to save the planet, to help him stop the war, and now…
"Free of time and cause and effect. And where creation itself ceases to be!"
"You see now?" Evy breathed heavily, looking at her brother, "Do you see? That's what they were planning in the final days of the war."
"We had to stop them!" the Doctor shouted, furious.
"Then…take me with you!" the Master begged, tears in his eyes, "Lord President, let me ascend into glory!" it was his last chance to escape, to live…he was right, one day his sister would come to hate him, that day was today…he couldn't bear to see her look at him like that, to know how she felt…he needed to get out!
"You are diseased!" the President sneered, "Albeit a disease of our own making. No more!" the President raised his gloved hand, aiming it, as if about to strike the Master down.
"No!" Evy struggled in her chains, trying to break free. Despite how angry she was with her brother, he was still her brother, she didn't ever want to see him die! Not again...
There was a loud click as the Doctor pushed himself to his feet and pointed the gun at the President, his finger on the trigger, trying to protect the man who had once been his best friend, the man who was his Link's brother.
Evy and Wilf stared at the Doctor, horrified at seeing him with the gun. Evy struggled harder, his mind was in chaos, he didn't know what to do, what he would do, she needed to get to him!
"Choose your enemy well," the President threatened, "We are many. The Master is but one."
"But he's the President!" the Master smirked, "Kill him and Gallifrey could be yours!"
The Doctor turned suddenly, aiming the gun at the Maser instead. Evy gasped, her eyes wide seeing her Link aiming for her brother.
The President slowly lowered his glove.
"He's to blame, not me!" the Master shouted, before realizing something, "Oh! The link is inside my head! Kill me, the link gets broken, they go back," the Doctor tensed, agreeing that this was an option. The Master shifted, meeting his gaze, "You never would, you coward!" they remained locked, staring at each other, the certainty on the Master's face faltering, fear actually creeping into him. He tensed, realizing one more thing…the Doctor was Linked, he would do anything to protect his Link, even if it meant killing him, "Go on then. Do it!"
"Terrin!" Evy chastised him.
The Doctor blinked, Evy's voice breaking through his rampant thoughts. This was still her brother, his Link's brother...he couldn't...
He turned and aimed the gun at the President.
"Exactly!" the Master laughed, "It's not just me, it's him! He's the link! Kill him!"
"Terrin stop it!" Evy shouted.
"The final act of your life is murder!" the President sneered, "But of which one of us?"
The Doctor's breathing hardened as his thoughts shifted rapidly…he didn't want to kill either of them…but what could he do?
A slight movement behind and to the right of the President drew his attention…one of the women lowered her hands, revealing her face. His eyes widened as his entire expression morphed to one of sadness and regret as he watched a tear slip down the woman's face.
Evy gasped quietly, her eyes on the woman as well…oh God. She looked between the Doctor and the woman, watching the silent interaction, forcing herself not to listen to his thoughts as he spoke silently with his mother.
The Doctor spun around again, his gun aimed on the Master who looked suddenly lost and terrified. He could feel his mother and Evy's eyes on him as he stared down the Master.
"Get out of the way," he growled at the Master.
The Master stared at him a moment before he half smiled and dove to his left, landing right by his sister, just as the Doctor fired a shot at the machine producing the link that pulled Gallifrey and the Time Lords to Earth. The machine exploded in a ball of fire as the Master covered Evy from it.
The Doctor spun to face the President, "The link is broken!" he shouted triumphantly, "Back into the Time War, Rassilon! Back into hell!"
"Terrin," Evy gasped. He looked down at her, afraid she'd been hurt more, only to see her staring at the Time Lords, her eyes wide in shock. He followed her gaze to see the second weeping woman on the left had lowered her hands…their mother…and she was looking at them with pride.
The Master felt tears well in his eyes at seeing her once more. She looked right at him, sad, but proud. So, so proud.
"You die with me, Doctor!" the President shouted, raising his glove to destroy him.
Evy whimpered, "No…" she breathed, struggling with her chains.
"I know," the Doctor said calmly.
The Master looked down at her, seeing the tears streaming from her eyes as she fought her restraints. He looked back at the second woman, their mother, who just gave him the briefest of nods.
The Master took Evy's head in his hands, kissing her forehead one last time before standing up behind the Doctor.
He could do this...for her.
"Get out of the way," he demanded calmly, rubbing his hands together.
The Doctor spun around to look sharply at the Master and then jumped to the right as the Master fired a bolt of power right at the President's chest, forcing him to stagger back.
"You did this to me!" the Master roared at the President, "All of my life!" he fired another bolt, "You made me! One!" his skeleton flickered into view as he fired another bolt, sending one as he counted them off, "Two! Three! Four!"
With the last bolt a bright light filled the room as the Time Lords and the Master were dragged away, into the whiteness of the void. The Doctor scrambled to Evy's side, protecting her from the gusts as Gallifrey disappeared.
The Doctor awoke with a gasp, lying on the floor of Naismith mansion beside Evy, who was slumped against the equipment, still handcuffed. He looked over at the space where the Time Lords had stood moments ago, only to see them gone.
There was shuffle next to him and he looked over to see Evy waking up as well. He struggled to her side as her eyes fluttered and she looked at him, eyes wide, "You're alive…" she breathed.
"I'm alive!" he shouted, grabbing her face and kissing her hard, "I'm still alive!" he laughed, one that was a cross between laugh and sob, hugging Evy when suddenly…
Four knocks broke through their celebrations.
The Doctor stiffened as did Evy.
There were four more knocks, a hand tapping on glass.
He pulled back, staring into Evy's tear filled eyes, devastated.
Four more knocks.
He looked up to see Wilf standing in the booth, still trapped, waving weakly.
"They gone then?" he asked them, "Yeah, good-o. If you could, er, let me out."
The Doctor nodded sadly, "Yeah…" he said softly.
Evy let out a shuddering breath as the Doctor kissed her head and slowly stood.
"I mean, this thing seems to be making a bit of a noise," Wilf added anxiously as the box made a few clangs.
"The Master…" he began, "Left the nuclear bolt running. It's gone into overload."
"And that's bad, is it?"
"No. 'Cos all the excess radiation gets vented," he nodded at the glass booth, "Inside there…Vinvocci glass contains it. All 500,000 rads about to flood that thing."
"Oh. Well, you'd better let me out then."
"Except it's gone critical," the Doctor continued, Wilf's face fell, "Touch one control and its floods…" he pulled out his sonic, "Even this would set it off."
"I'm sorry…look, just leave me."
The Doctor smiled bitterly, putting the sonic back, "Ok, right then, I will. 'Cos you had to go in there, didn't you? You had to go and get stuck, oh yes!" he swallowed hard, realizing something, "'Cos that's who you are, Wilfred. You were always this. Waiting for me, all this time."
"No, really, just leave me," Wilf said, tears in his voice, "I'm an old man, Doctor. I've had my time."
"Well, exactly, look at you! Not remotely important! But me? I could do so much more! So much more! But this is what I get. My reward. And it's not fair!" he shoved a stack of papers off the desk near him as a sob rang out.
He looked back to see Evy, still handcuffed to the equipment, and he could feel his eyes filling with tears, knowing what he had to do. He didn't want to leave her, God he didn't want to leave her…he looked back at the booth, but he wouldn't be him if he didn't do this…he wouldn't be the man she loved if he didn't…
"I have to do this," he said softly, looking straight at her.
She twisted and looked up at him, tears streaming down her face as she struggled against the restraints. She didn't know where the keys were, she'd tried her powers but she couldn't get them to unlock the cuffs as she couldn't see the locks, and her sonic was in her back pocket, she couldn't reach it or see it…and she knew the Doctor wouldn't unlock her because he knew she'd try to stop him, take his place, as she had promised so long ago…
"No," Wilf shook his head as the Doctor walked towards the booth, "No, no, please! Please don't. No! Don't! Don't! Please. Don't. Please."
'You can't die Theta,' Evy's voice whispered to him, 'You can't die. I've only just found you again…I can't lose you now…'
'Then I won't,' he promised her, 'I'll fight it. I won't die, I'll just…change…' he winced, 'I'll survive this, for you. I swear.'
He paused by the door, resting his hand on the handle and looked over at Wilf, "Wilfred, it's my honor," he took a breath, "Better be quick!" he stepped into the booth, "Three," he pushed the button to release Wilf, "Two," Wilf rushed out.
"Wilf!" Evy shouted, "Get me out! Get my sonic!" she nodded at her back pocket
Wilf ran over to the young woman as the Doctor pushed the last button, "One."
Wilf nearly sobbed as Evy tensed and cried out in pain at the same time as the Doctor. He grabbed the metallic wand from her back pocket and just hit a button, aiming it at the cuffs. They snapped open as the Doctor fell to his knees. Evy pushed herself away, half running, half crawling over to the booth.
"Doctor!" she sobbed as he fell to the floor in agony, collapsing in on himself, covering his head with his hands, "Doctor…" she whispered, placing her hand on the glass, resting her forehead against it as he convulsed with pain.
The lights went off as the power died down.
Evy could feel her hearts stop as he remained motionless, the Link was still there…he had to be…
His fingers twitched.
She let out a breath of relief as he began to move. He twisted, looking through the glass, right at her. She moved her hand on the glass, as he did, both just breathing a moment before he pulled himself up to sit.
"Hello," Wilf breathed, relieved to see him the same.
The Doctor let out a humorless laugh, "Hi," he said hoarsely.
"Still with us?" Wilf asked as the Doctor tiredly pushed himself to his feet.
"System's dead," he said as Evy stepped back, waiting till he stood completely, "I absorbed it all. Whole thing's kaput."
As soon as he was standing, Evy threw the door open and leapt at him, pulling him into a desperate kiss. He was a bit stunned at the sudden move, but kissed her back nonetheless. He almost smiled into the kiss as he could feel himself start to feel better…but then frowned when he realized he was feeling better and not worse, which should have happened with 500,000 rads of radiation filtering through him.
He pulled away quickly, staring at her strained face, scrunching in pain. His eye widened, "What did you do?"
"You have so much you still want to do," she said, wincing, "You deserve your reward, but you wouldn't have had enough time unless I helped. The radiation was just fresh enough to..."
His eyes searched hers, "You absorbed it from me!"
"230,000 out of 500,000," she replied, just enough to be a leathal dose for the both of them, "It should give you enough time…"
He could feel tears pooling in his eyes as he realized she'd basically condemned herself to die as well, contaminated herself with the radiation to the point where she would surely die with him, "Why would you do that?"
"You're not going anywhere without me…" she smiled tensely at him, "Neither of us are walking off with someone else now."
He let out a shuddering breath and pulled her into a tight hug…she'd chosen to end her life, to be with him…
She pulled back a bit later and turned to Wilf, "You alright Wilf?"
He nodded, watching them, "Safe and sound…" but then pointed at them, "Mind you, you're both in a hell of a state. You've got some battle scars there."
The Doctor buried his face in his hands, wiping his fingers down his skin as though wiping away the injuries, to reveal a clean face, all healed up. He looked down at Evy to see her own cuts and bruises starting to fade as he reached out and stroked her face till they were gone completely.
Wilf gasped in shock, seeing them better, "But they've…your faces! How did you do that?"
Evy reached out and took the Doctor's hand, looking down at them, now unmarked, "It's started," she commented.
They headed back to Donna's house, not only to drop off Wilf, but to check on Donna. It could be a hard experience to have a Time Lord work through your mind, Evy had been careful not to excite her mind too much, sending it straight to sleep afterwards so it wouldn't be damaged. But she still wanted to make sure the ginger was alright.
They walked into the sitting room to see Donna lying, unconscious, on a sofa, covered in a blanket, Shaun sitting next to her with Sylvia kneeling beside her.
"Donna?" they heard Shaun ask, "Can you hear me? Donna?"
Sylvia looked up to see Evy and the Doctor walk in with Wilf, "Oh thank God!" she exclaimed, standing and rushing to them, "Can you help her? She won't wake up! What happened to her?"
Evy just laid a reassuring hand on the woman's shoulder and stepped past her, to kneel beside Donna.
"Donna," she called gently, reaching out to lay a hand on her forehead, "It's alright, you can wake up now."
Donna's eyes fluttered, her mind having recognized Evy's voice and letting her wake up. She frowned, looking up, "But…I was…what happened?" she looked over to see Evy smiling down at her, "Evy?" and the Doctor "Doctor? What happened?"
"You were amazing," Evy smiled, reaching forward to hug her friend.
Donna pulled back, concernerd, she could just tell something was off, "What's wrong?"
The Doctor stepped forward and hugged her as well, "Nothing," he pulled back, "We've got to be off though…"
"Will you stop by again?" Donna frowned, there was something they weren't telling her.
"Oh you'll see us again," Evy nodded, pushing herself up and walking out with the Doctor.
They got to the TARDIS when Wilf came running out after them.
"Where're you going?" Wilf frowned.
The Doctor swallowed hard, squeezing Evy's hand, "To get my reward."
They stepped into the TARDIS, shutting the door and taking off.
The first person they had to see after leaving Donna's was Martha. They appeared in a warehouse and just had to follow the gunshots. They could see Martha and what looked like Mickey Smith standing, huddled behind a wall on a lower level, looking at a map, unaware of the Sontaran standing on a nearby platform, aiming his gun at them. The Doctor ran into the TARDIS and pulled out his trusty mallet, walking over to the Sontaran, determined, whacking him straight in the probic vent, knocking him out.
Evy ran over to him, stepping around the Sontaran to lean against him, the two just watching Martha and Mickey look around.
"She broke it off with Tom," she said gently to the Doctor as they watched, recalling the last time she'd spoken to the woman, "He was offered a place in Africa, and Martha couldn't bring herself to leave England…she and Mickey were hitting it off last I spoke to them."
"They look happy," the Doctor smiled, squeezing her close to him as Martha and Mickey seemed to catch sight of them. They looked up, staring straight at them in shock.
"Hey!" Mickey shouted up at them, both of them jumping and waving.
Evy laughed, raising a hand to wave back as the Doctor nodded and turned to lead her away.
Next came Sarah Jane. They materialized on a street, the Doctor heading over to the house to check if she was home when…
'Doctor!' Evy shouted.
He spun around to see Luke strolling across the street, talking on his mobile, unaware of the car driving towards him.
The Doctor sprang into action, being closer than Evy was, running and barreling into him, pushing him out of danger and across to the other side of the street. As the car drove past, Evy ran over to them.
"It's you!" Luke gasped in shock, seeing the Doctor again.
"You need to be more careful Luke," Evy smiled, jogging over.
"And you!" his eyes grew wide as he stared at the two of them.
The Doctor smiled and walked back to the TARDIS with Evy as Luke called back, "Mum!" he ran across the street, looking carefully both ways, and over to his mother as she headed down her drive.
"What?" Sarah Jane asked, "What is it?"
"It's them!" Luke pointed over at them, "It's the Doctor! And Evy!"
Sarah Jane looked over, seeing the TARDIS with Evy and the Doctor standing before it. They glanced back over at her, both of them waving at her before stepping in.
They ended up in a bar next, where a variety of aliens were gathered. There were Raxicoricofallipatorians, Hath, Judoon, Graskes, a Sycorax, even an Adipose, among others.
But the man they were there for was Captain Jack, sitting at the middle of the bar. Evy was standing by the bartender, jotting down something on a note the Doctor had made on the back of a napkin and nodding over at the Captain.
The bartender walked over and passed him the note, "From those two over there."
He moved aside for Jack to see Evy and the Doctor standing there, near the back of the bar. He stared at them in surprise, when the Doctor nodded at the note. He looked down, opening it only to read 'His name is Alonso…' in the Doctor's scrawl. He looked back up, bewildered, when a young shipman slumped onto the stool next to him. He glanced at the man and then back to the duo, Evy made a twisting motion with her hand and he turned the note over to see her message 'Pretend you're psychic or something…'
He laughed, looking up as they gave him a small salute, which he returned, before they wandered off.
Next they ended up in a bookstore…not really on purpose. They were walking around, trying to find their way to UNIT to ask about the Brigadier when they saw a book signing going on, 'A Journal of Impossible Things,' and paused.
They walked in to see a woman who looked very much like Joan Redfern, the nurse from 1913, signing books. She was currently explaining the book to a fan, "No, it's not just a story, no. Every word of it's true. I found my great-grandmother's diary in the loft. And she was a nurse in 1913 and she fell in love with this man called John Smith. Except he was a visitor from another world travelling with two other women. She fell in love with a man from the stars but he loved someone else. And she…wrote it all down."
She handed the book over to the customer and got ready to sign the next one, which was put in front of her, the Doctor sliding it over as Evy stood beside him.
"And who's it for?" the woman asked.
"The Doctor and Evy," the Doctor replied.
She sighed, "'To the Doctor and Evy,' funny, those are the names he and Ms. Daniels used…" she stopped suddenly and slowly looked up at them.
The Doctor frowned, "Ms. Daniels?"
"Yes…" she answered slowly, seeing the resemblance of him to the man in the book, "Evelyn Daniels, the woman John Smith fell in love with, a traveler just like him even though he didn't know it…" she flipped open to a page in the book and held it up to show a sketch of the woman, Evy's previous incarnation, "The diary said she never had a chance once John saw her."
"Was she happy?" the Doctor asked, stunned, as he glanced at Evy who looked down, a bit bashful. She'd never told him about his time as John in relation to her, and now he was racing through the memories he'd seen when he'd Linked to her to find that particular adventure, "In the end?"
"I think she was," Evy said before the woman could answer, which didn't seem likely as she looked quiet stunned, "She's proof of that," she nodded at her.
"Yes," she answered, smiling at the thought that her existence meant her great-grandmother had been happy, "She was," she looked at him, memorizing the features of the man from the book, taking relief in knowing the fantastic story was true, "Were you?"
The Doctor just smiled and took Evy's hand. That was all the answer she needed.
Evy smiled down at the woman, picking up the signed book before she and the Doctor turned and walked out. The Doctor was focusing on Evy's memories of 1913. When he'd gained all her memories, he sort of flew through them, hadn't really had time to truly enjoy them as the Daleks were trying to break down the door. He hadn't really given a thought to the ones pertaining to 1913 as he thought Martha had told him everything…apparently not.
But then he smiled as well, he could see from her memories, John Smith had known that, deep down, he had loved Evy, even before he realized it.
They'd missed the ceremony. Donna would kill them, they were sure, but they were there for the small reception gathering outside the church. They stood a bit to the side, watching as Donna and Shaun kissed and got ready for the pictures.
"Right then, come on then, you lot…" Donna commanded, getting them in order, "Get in! This photo is just with friends! Come on and I want all of you in it. Come on, that's it! Well, friends, and Nerys! Oh, I'm only joking! Oh, look at her!"
"Well, you made me wear peach!" the woman, Nerys, replied.
"That's 'cos you are a peach!" Donna laughed, "Furry skin, stone inside, going off!"
"Ok, smile!" the photographer called, snapping the picture.
As the flash cleared, something caught Donna's eyes and they widened. She quickly whispered something to Shaun, before rushing down the steps, past her mother and granddad, and over to the blue box behind the gate.
"Evy!" she shouted, hugging the woman, "Doctor!" and him as well, "You made it!"
"Wouldn't miss it," Evy laughed as Wilf and Sylvia came to join them.
"We just wanted to pop in and give you our gifts," the Doctor smiled, happy to see Donna so happy. Evy handed her a small box and the Doctor an envelope. Donna looked around, wondering what to do with them when Evy led her away, as the Doctor was hounded by Sylvia and Wilf.
"Open it," Evy nudged her.
Donna looked down excitedly and pulled the ribbon off the box Evy had given her, pulling it open to see a pink piece of cloth. She pulled it out, gasping when she saw a 'Mini Temp' written on a little pair of baby pajamas, "I'm gonna be a mum?" she breathed, stunned.
"One day," Evy assured her, happy, "And she's beautiful Donna."
Donna stared at the fabric in shock before wiping her tears away and putting it back in the box. She went to open the gift from the Doctor when Evy stopped her, "The Doctor wants you to wait till we're gone," she smiled, "I just couldn't wait to see your reaction to mine."
Donna pouted but Evy laughed and led her back to the TARDIS as the Doctor was explaining his gift, "Thing is I never carry money, so I just popped back in time. Borrowed a quid off a really lovely man," he smiled at the Nobles as Evy walked over to his side, "Geoffrey Noble, his name was."
Sylvia's eyes widened as her hand went to her mouth, Donna's eyes filled with tears as she looked down at the little envelope, it was something of a gift from her dad as well then.
"'Have it,' he said," Evy smiled at them, taking the Doctor's hand, "'Have that on me.'"
The Doctor nodded at them before tugging Evy over to the TARDIS. They paused at the door, seeming to discuss something, when he sighed and turned, nodding at Donna, at the envelope.
Donna ripped it open to see a lottery ticket. She looked up at them, eyes wide, mouth open in shock, the Doctor just winked at her and stepped into the TARDIS with Evy.
Evy walked over to the console and began putting in instructions.
"What are you doing?" the Doctor frowned.
She looked up at him, "We've got, or rather you've got, one more trip to make."
"It's a stretch. It's a huge stretch, but it should work…"
She flipped a switch and the TARDIS was off, materializing moments later on a sidewalk in the middle of a small neighborhood, in the snow, at night.
The Doctor stepped out, looking around, confused. Evy led him to the middle of the street, waiting for him to realize where they were, when voices drifted over to them. He pulled her over to an alley, as two women slowly drew nearer.
"Too late now, I've missed it," the Doctor's eyes widened as he looked back at a smiling Evy, recognizing Rose's voice, "Midnight. Mickey's going to be calling me every minute. This is your fault!"
"No, it is not!" came Jackie's indignant response, "It's Jimbo! He said he was gonna give us a lift and then he said his axle's broke! I can't help it!"
"Get rid of him, mum! He's useless!"
"Listen to you! With a mechanic! Be fair though. In my time of life, I'm not gonna do much better."
"Don't be like that," Rose stopped her just outside the mouth of the alley, giving the Time Lords view of them, "Never know, there could be someone out there."
"Maybe. One day. Happy New Year!"
"Happy New Year!" Rose smiled as she hugged her mother, "Don't stay out all night!"
"Try and stop me!" Jackie hurried away.
The Doctor slowly walked to the edge of the alley as Rose walked on, a pain struck him and he grimaced, groaning. Evy forced herself to remain where she was, further in the alley, she couldn't let Rose see her, this was something the Doctor had to do.
Rose turned around, "You alright, mate?"
"Yeah," he nodded, trying to rein in the regeneration's beginnings.
"Too much to drink?" she smiled.
"Something like that."
"Maybe it's time you went home."
"Anyway, Happy New Year!" she said cheerily.
"And you!" he grinned. She turned to walk away and head inside when he called out once more, "What year is this?"
"Blimey, how much have you had?" she laughed as he shrugged, "2005. January the first."
"2005," he repeated thoughtfully, "Tell you what…" he swallowed, "I bet you're gonna have a really great year!"
"Yeah?" she asked, amused, he smiled, "See ya!" she waved at him and ran off to her home. The Doctor watched her go, smiling softly to himself. He turned and Evy walked over to him. He pulled her into his arms and hugged her tightly, planting a kiss on top of her head.
"Thank you," he whispered to her.
She smiled and nodded.
He suddenly groaned in pain and fell back against the wall. Evy sunk with him, her own regeneration pains starting as well. He was breathing heavily as he tried to stagger out of the shadows of the alley and over to the TARDIS, Evy running to his side and trying to support him as she struggled too. He collapsed to the ground, taking Evy with him, his eyes closed in agony.
"Doctor," she whispered, "Listen…"
They looked up to see Ood Sigma standing in the snow.
"We will sing to you, Doctor," he said, "And to you Evy. The Universe will sing you to your sleep."
The Ood song became clearer, filling them with the strength they needed to stand and stumble back to the TARDIS.
"This song is ending, but the story never ends," Sigma said as they reached the door.
Evy forced it open, helping the Doctor in as they struggled up the ramp, using the rails to support themselves. He pulled off his coat, throwing it over a beam before looking at his right hand which was glowing with the energy of regeneration. He looked over at Evy to see her hands glowing as well.
He reached out and took her hands, pulling her to stand with him by the console, hitting a lever and sending them off into space.
He looked down at Evy, tears in his eyes, "I don't wanna go," he whispered to her.
She gave him a sad smile, tears in her eyes as well, squeezing his hand, "We'll go together."
He pulled her to him and into his arms, both of them breathing heavily, golden energy swirling around them as they clung to each other. They threw their heads back as the regeneration hit them full force, still not letting go of the other even as fires began to spring up around them.
Moments later the energy died down and they stumbled away from each other, gasping as they looked down at each other.
Evy gave herself a quick glance over before looking up at the Doctor in amusement, he was enthusiastically checking himself over.
"Legs!" he shouted, grabbing his legs, "I've still got legs!" he then proceeded to kiss his knees in thankfulness, "Good!" and then patted his chest, "Arms!" and he noticed his hands, "Hands! Ooh, fingers! Lots of fingers!" and from there he moved over to his face, "Ears! Yes, eyes, two. Nose. Ooh, I've had worse. Chin!" he looked up at her, grinning widely, just taking in her new appearance, "Blimey..."
She was blonde now, her hair just a bit curly and shorter than before, down just an inch past her shoulders. Her eyes were hazel, the perfect mix of green and brown swirls, and her nose was button shaped. She was a bit shorter than her last incarnation, a bit shorter than the previous one as well, probably only half a foot taller than five feet, but then again, he felt like he might be a bit shorter as well. A strand of her hair seemed intent to fall over the side of her, just at the edge of her right eye.
He stepped up to her and brushed the strand behind her ear, "You're still beautiful," he whispered to her.
She smiled, reaching out to run her hands through his longer, if a bit floppy, hair, "And you're still not ginger," she giggled as he grabbed his hair and pulled it down to see for himself.
He grinned at her laugh, it sounded like tinkling bells, before pulling her to him for a kiss. They were only like that a moment before the TARDIS jolted violently with a massive explosion. They jumped apart, the Doctor looking at the console as though just realizing the damage their dual regeneration had done.
"Right, yeah," he muttered, "Probably not the best time to do that…"
She rolled her eyes at him, sharing a meaningful look with him before they both dashed to the console, "We're crashing," she shouted above the explosions.
The Doctor looked at her, grinning broadly, "Geronimo!"
They both held onto the console as it flew back towards the Earth.
To be continued...in...Linked Through Time!
A/N: Woo! Regeneration, a new beginning. Believe me, for those of you who are fans of the Academic Series, if you thought Keta was bad in the flirting department...watch out for...um...Luta? Thena? Thuna? Leta? Dovy? Hmmm...I have no idea. BUT! River once said that she'd never seen them so distant as she had in the Library, we'll definitely start to see just how distant they were then because they are going to be uber close now that they've regenerated Linked. No more doubts, no more hesitations, no more holding back. They are on the same page, almost like the regeneration reset them, tuned them even more in to each other, this will be the first bodies that they are both Linked from the start in. I can't wait!
Also cannot wait for Series 7! I hope everyone enjoys it and gets to see it relatively soon. I know I won't be able to till probably Sunday, I don't have ANY of the BBC channels, not even BBC America and I'm IN America, AND, for some reason, I can never get the videos to work on the BBC site! Grrr. So I pretty much barricade myself in my room and surf the web for hours on end till I find the first posting of the episode on some tv website or another. Oh well, I'll see it eventually!
As for the new Evy, I picture her as being similar to the actress Emilie de Ravin, but with hazel eyes, not blue. I'm so excited for you to see what this new Evy is like.
Since this was a 1-episode/1-chapter chapter, I'm going to post the beginning of Linked Through Time tomorrow, but thankfully we have Asylum of the Daleks to make up for not posting today eh? ^-^
One final note, thanks for pointing out that the Gate is actually Hipocci! I was going off the transcripts and wiki pages, but when I listened to that part too I went back and corrected that. So thanks! :)
I really want to thank everyone for your reviews as well, you guys are great!