Disclaimer: I don't in any way own the series Doctor Who . Those are the sole property of the BBC.

Return to Satellite 5 AU: "Bad Wolf", "The Parting of the Ways" and "Born Again".

Chapter Eighteen: Apart But Not Separate

Four hundred and forty-three levels up from the observation deck, Jack and the rest of the rag tag group of defenders ready themselves for the attack they knew would be coming. The Dalek race had been thought long gone from the universe, for the small band of fighters they sincerely wished the monsters had stayed that way.

Jack stationed his people up and down the wide corridor, partially hidden behind wall supports. "Alright everyone follow my orders and don't give any ground. The best of luck to all of you."

"Pavel, did your team managed fix that extra surprise?" Jack inquired of the male tech, who handed off a large gun to the Hindi woman.

Datvich's gaze stayed steady on the dark skinned woman's face. He had hoped at one time they might get together, shaking his head Pavel answered. "Yes, Captain it's all sorted."

Lynda watched the monitor transfixed. The display clearly showed the Daleks descending on the Game Station. The metal menace's glided directly to the closest unimpeded airlock.

Lynda swallowed down the fright that had taken over her vocal cords. "Doctor. Jack, you guys were spot on. They're going for floor four hundred ninety fourth. They're trying to force it open."

The Doctor rushed about even faster as Lynda's words seemed to echo throughout the chamber. His hands flew plugging in cables, tapping keys on the computer panel and using the sonic screwdriver to sync everything. He worked so quickly that he made the massive satellite shake violently, it caused the stranded humans to grab something to keep themselves from crashing onto the floor.

The Daleks were undeterred by the disturbance, they continued to glide effortlessly, not even breaking their formation, into the opening they'd made on the four hundred ninety fourth floor.

Rose stood in front of the TRADIS' console and time rotor, she leaned over inhaling great lungs fulls of air as she attempted to catch her breath after the long run back. "Why didn't I think of it before, she just needed to reverse. The TARDIS is clever she could do it. Yeah."

"Well, maybe but how do we get it… Her to do it." Mickey replied sarcastically.

Rose ignored Mickey's comment. "The Doctor always said the TARDIS is telepathic. This ship is can listen. The Doctor would constantly go on about the fact the TARDIS gets in your head translating languages all the time, you know telepathically. Cause she's alive, really a living being."

"You lot, go on about this blue box being alive... and... and calling it a she. Well it... she is certainly acting like one right now yeah. She's not listening. Typical female." Mickey muttered still not complete sure what Rose meant.

Rose gazed down at the TARDIS console considering the bizarre controls. "But that's the thing, she is telepathic. I need to get inside. The last time I saw you in Cardiff with the whole Blon Fel Fotch Slitheen…" Rose taped the metal door on the side of the console. "This opened." Rose remembered the blinding light had shone even through her closed eyelids. The Doctor had been adamant when he'd shouted at her and Jack not to look at it, and Rose had been very tempted, but she'd followed the Doctor's orders. She'd been extremely glad afterward since the bright light had reduced the big green alien back into an egg.

"It holds a powerful warm light, that the Doctor called the heart of the TARDIS. I know that if we can get it open, I could connect with her. Hopefully reason with her to take me back." Rose concluded without mentioning Margaret the Slitheen's fate or that the Doctor had also said he hadn't known what looking directly into the TARDIS' heart would do to anyone else.

Mickey gave his ex-girlfriend a worried glance. "Rose are you sure that's a good idea?"

"Mm? What do you mean?" Rose asked distractedly. She clenched her hand tightly around the locket involuntarily.

"If this doesn't do something bad ta ya. You'll be goin' back just to die with them." said Mickey morosely.

Rose gave Mickey a sad smile but spoke with utter conviction. "You're not truly living if you don't take risks. The Doctor needs me. Besides, there really isn't anything for me here."

Mickey's face clouded over with stunned hurt. "Your mum and me are nothing?" The young black man asked indignantly.

Rose inwardly sighed as she hurried to explain. "Mickey you and mum don't need me not like the Doctor. You'll miss me sure but both of you have lives of your own, yeah." She looked away not wanting to see the pain she ultimately caused and most likely would continue to do so, but in the grand scheme of things it was better to be honest.

Mickey didn't speak for a few moments. The dark eyed man didn't totally get the Doctor's appeal but he'd always been in love with Rose Tyler and wanted her to be happy. Mickey knew immediately he would regret his decision to help. "Well ifna that's what you really want… let's bust this hatchet open." 'I'll be prayin' that you make it back again.'

The TARDIS sat silent throughout the two human's conversation. Their time seemed to slow as the timelines slimmed down until only one path lay before them. The TARDIS desired to help the humans but she still had the Doctor's last program running through her systems. She eagerly awaited the moment that the pink and yellow human opened up her heart… their heart. Surprises were in store not only for the Doctor but many more.

The giant slim structure of the Space Station rotated slowly, the space around it filled with the saucer shaped ships of the Dalek fleet.

Lynda bit at her thumb nail, as she focused on the monitor, the blinking red lights that indicated the encroaching Dalek army.

"Jack, their on board." Her voice quavered. "Their headed up like you said."

Troop upon troop of Dalek's entered and glided quickly down the deserted corridors at least until they came upon the very small band of volunteers. The pepper pots advanced swiftly on the pitiful group.

"Now initiate the laser field." Jack's voice rang out of the comm device strong but urgent. "This should slow them down."

The pink and blue haired assistant from 'Ballroom X' quickly tapped a sequence on a keypad before activating the next stage by clapping her hand on the scanner pad.

In Lynda's lone vigil from the observation deck, she could hear the systems being engaged as it reverberated throughout the spacious room. All too soon her monitor made a bleating noise of those same defensive systems being powered down.

Lynda's voice shook with nervous fright. "They've overridden the internal and external defenses. Everything's been unlocked."

Without the defenses in place, the volunteers timorously held guns from their concealed positions behind the Stations structured outcroppings. The Daleks came towards them single file since the corridors were too narrow to allow more. One frightened individual fired instigating the other three to automatically start shooting as well.

To the group's terrified horror, the munitions stopped meters away from the pepper pots armored casings. The projectiles vaporized instantly at the Daleks protective barrier.

"Captain! What do we do? The bastic bullets aren't working!" The assistant manager shouted, frantically hysterical into her comm unit. She continued firing at the oncoming danger.

The lead Dalek finally returned fire on the volunteers. It's beam caught the dual-color haired woman square in the chest, followed by her fellow defenders.

Their cries of pain echoed up and down the hall, and through the comm unit that still worked. The four figures bodies lite up like a x-ray before slumping to the floor motionless.

In the alleyway where the TARDIS remained parked, a yellow Volkswagen bug sat engine running, with the boot towards the open doors while Mickey Smith finished attaching a thick, strong chain to the bumper.

The idea was completely daft, Mickey shook his head as he gave the chain a final tug before heading to the driver's side door. The young black man climbed into the small vehicle even through his misgivings about the whole business a look of determination sets over his features, as he released the handbrake and put his Beetle into gear.

Rose had watched silently as her ex set up the chain to his car so as to yank the console compartment door open. She rushed back when Mickey started his vehicle pulling on the chain. Unconsciously, she worried the locket she still held, the warmth it radiated soothed Rose's anxiety.

Mickey growled jamming his foot down on the accelerator to gain an advantage over the console door. A few minutes later smoke billowed out from under the car, without moving a centimeter. Mickey leaned forward in a vain attempt to get more leverage.

"Come on, you stupid thing! Give already!" Mickey cried out in frustrated fury. The wheels of the Volkswagen spun futilely, gaining no traction on the hard black pavement.

Rose's spirit strained the longer it went on. "Mickey, it's not budging!"

Mickey snarled not giving up as if sheer force of will could make the panel open. He pressed both feet down on the pedal, giving the motor all the petrol he could. The chain tensed under the pressure, neither side gave a degree of ground.

Rose covered her mouth, with moist hands, her bottom lip clamped firmly between sharp teeth, with a heighten sense of anticipation. Rose could see the chain rigid under the stress of two opposing obstacles, without any warning the steel snapped in two.

Rose gasped out in pain and vexation, the chain hadn't worked and she'd bitten her lip so hard that the blonde woman could taste the blood. In her infuriated disappointment Rose kicked the console panel before collapsing over the TARDIS controls, to scream and pummel it until she subsided into sobs. She needed to go back to the Doctor but it was as if the universe were testing her.

Jack's calm voice broke over the comm unit. "You all right Lynda?"

"Yeah, sorry. The first troops of Daleks are now on floor four hundred ninety-five." Lynda stood resolutely in front of the observation deck monitor. Her insides quivered with fear, the pigtailed blonde's mind struggled to forget the echoing cries of agony from the first casualties of battle.

The Doctor's steading northern accent followed. "Jack, how's the next step?"

One floor below the Doctor, Captain Jack Harkness looked over to where Pavel stationed himself. The programmer gave the 51st century a nod indicating that phase two was ready.

Jack spoke into his wrist unit to reply. "All set to go. Four hundred ninety-five gotta love that number."

The Daleks crowded onto the main corridor, which held more than the other narrow passageways. A proximity alarm blared out alerting the advancing army of armed aggressors. The lead Dalek cried out commandingly. "Identify yourself! Identify!"

Two droids smoothly drifted down, towards the confused pepper potts. The male designed robot intoned, "It is time to say farewell. You have been eliminated." The female, the Anne Droid from the 'Weakest Link', cried out her signature parting line. Both fired destroying the first three Daleks instantly.

It didn't take long before other Daleks came replacing those which were disintegrated. The new lead Dalek quickly fires before the droids could speak. It's first targeted the Anne Droid's head blew clear off her man made shoulders. The power draining from the Anne Droid caused to lurch forward blocking the Dalek's next attack on the Len-bot. The second shot from the Dalek tossed the female droid back then onto her side.

The Len-bot shot the fourth Dalek disintegrating it before the new foe take it out.

"We advance on to!"

The Dalek's words were cut off as two more droids swept down the corridor firing their lasers. The Daleks turned their eyestalks on newest obstacle; they had to take extra time crushing the additional attackers as more Droids revealed themselves.

Jack's group waited, hoping that the distraction would last. Precious minutes were gained but inevitably the Daleks defeated the second wave of resistance.

With all the Droids destroyed, the Dalek's glided onto their next target. "Proceed to the next level!"

"Everyone, they're on the move again, they're using the main ventilation shafts! They're flying up!" Lynda announced, her blue eyes tracked the red blips that represented their adversaries. Suddenly those red indicator lights broke apart, some were heading up, but the rest dropped down rapidly. "They weren't supposed to do that! Jack… They're heading for the bottom floor. Oh… no… no… no!"

The Daleks swiftly glided towards their objective to exterminate all humans on board the satellite.

The abandoned contestants huddle close together. They had been that way since the violent tremor had rattled the large structure. None wanted to believe the blue eyed man when he'd spouted outrageous nonsense that Earth was about to be taken over by a race of beings told about in children's stories to make them obey. The Daleks were the monster in the closet, the boogeyman under the bed, the Freddy Krueger of nightmares.

Rick had been the most vocal about his skepticism. In his mind the small group was a bunch of terrorists. He figured that it was all a ruse to gain political control of Earth. The dancer had no doubts, but his surety on the matter fled as golden armored pepper potts emerged from the doorway.

"Exterminate! Exterminate!"

Dozens of the metal covered beings shouted. They struck with cold accuracy. The remaining humans desperately tried escaping some deliberately hid behind others and others attempted to hide behind storage containers. The air filled with a cacophony of cries from both sides.

Rick's mind still didn't want to comprehend stuck in a state of denial. "You're not real! You can exist!"

"This is not right! I've already escaped death once! No, I have a second chance!" Rick's declarations were easily ignored by the emotionless Dalek that raised it's weapon and fired. The dancer's body collapsed amongst the pawns, they in the end saw who their real lords and masters were.

The screams and cries from floor zero, unnerved Lynda so much that with a trembling hand she switched off the communication. The sounds had been far worse than those who'd been defending the four hundred ninety-fourth floor, at least they could fight back. She flicked the comm unit on again once she'd managed to regain semblance of composure. Tears continued to stream down as Lynda gave the remaining people on board a mournful report in a croaky voice. "Floor zero is gone. They're all dead. Doctor, whatever you have to do to get rid of 'em you better make it soon."

Jackie walked into the TARDIS, the size still astonished her, it being merely the second time she'd been inside. She couldn't fathom the how and where fores that made the time machine inside so large but Jackie supposed that's what made it so alien. The blonde woman walked over to her daughter. The girl's head hung low and Jackie could see that she'd been through an emotional roller coaster. It raised the older woman's suspicions again about the Doctor's motives for sending Rose home.

"Please, sweetheart, just give up. It's not gonna work. The Doctor wanted you here safe with us. He knew this is where you needed to be." Jackie said gently, she ran a comforting hand up and down Rose's arm to ease the sting of her words. Jackie wanted her daughter to accept the fact that there would be no more crazy alien adventures.

Rose lifted her gaze to her mother's pleading face. She understood that her mum had been scared for her the minute she'd found out that her only child had gone off with an older man… a nine hundred year old alien man of all things, with a predilection for danger and didn't do domestics. "Really, you Jackie Tyler, raised a quitter? You want me to just give in?"

"Yes, this isn't your fight. Sweetheart you need to leave this behind. Just walk away and lock this box up like he said." Jackie didn't like the defeat on her daughter's face, but sometimes that's what life dealt you.

"Dad wouldn't have said that. He wouldn't have me just give up." Rose didn't know why she brought up her dad, Pete Tyler, she'd spent only one day with him. The blonde hadn't even told her mum about it.

Jackie sighed shaking her head. Obviously, the stories that she'd told Rose about her dad had the poor girl had given her the impression that she knew the dead man. "He went and died on us. So we won't know what he'd have said will we?"

Mother and daughter stared at each other with warring emotions. The silence seemed to deepen the longer neither spoke. Jackie broke the silent stalemate, "And ifin' he had been here for: one we wouldn't be havin' this conversation and two he'd be tellin' you the same thing."

"I don't believe you mum. You can't know that, and I know Dad wouldn't want me to give up." Rose huffed, annoyed that her Mum, suggested that Pete Tyler, her dad, would've told her to quit.

Jackie looked away to hide the pain and sorrow her daughter's words caused.

Unaware of her mother's distress, Rose pressed on. "He wouldn't just be telling me, he'd be helping me to think of a way to get back. He'd encourage me to try everything I could to save not only the Doctor but anyone who's life was in danger."

"You don't know. You have no idea that your Dad would've done or said anything of the kind. "Jackie erupted preferring to be angry rather than deal with unbearable sadness. "'Cos he's not here."

"That doesn't matter. I met him in the past." Rose shouted back.

"No, you couldn't have, stop talkin' rubbish."

Rose bolted up right on the jump seat. "I did though. The Doctor… he took me to when you got married… and then to the day Dad died."

"Will you stop!" Jackie tried to think back, knowing she would've remembered her blonde haired daughter and the big eared alien git.

"No Mum. We were there. You remember there was someone by his side." Rose's voice broke with the weight of emotions she held inside. "A young woman and she knelt beside him holding his hand."

Jackie couldn't reply her mind kept spinning with images of that horrible day. There'd been a girl but it couldn't have been her daughter.

Once again tears were running down Rose's cheeks. She felt a headache forming from all the crying but ignored it, she had to make her mother understand. "Come on Mum you saw! Maybe it was from a distance but you did see! A blonde girl! That girl was me. You saw…"

"Stop. Just stop it." Jackie cut off the rest of Rose's words. She didn't want to listen to anymore; her late husband death was touchy subject. She couldn't believe that Rose would use that for her argument even if she did remember a girl.

Rose couldn't stop, she had to make her mother see, that the past, present and future were all possible with the Doctor. "That's the point Mum; the Doctor can make those things happen."

"Stop talking nonsense!" Jackie frustrated and out of sorts shouted back at her daughter, the older woman's feelings were in such turmoil she needed to get away. Without another word she turned a fled from not only her daughter, the time-space machine but also her painful past.

Rose collapsed sobbing onto the grating, leaning into the TARDIS's console; she drew her legs up holding them tightly as she began to rock. She alienated her mum and ex-boyfriend, with no way to return to the Doctor and there wasn't even the comforting hum of the TARDIS as if the ship also were against her. Now, Rose knew she was completely alone.