A/N: Yeah, that's right. I wrote a ridiculous, cracky Twilight/Doctor Who crossover. It's horrible and crazy and should be read by no one. At all. Ever.But just in case you do decide, in the spirit of Halloween and all, to give it a try, let me make a few points:
1) While I enjoyed the Twilight series, I also kinda like poking fun at it where warranted. I don't want to offend anyone's fandom sensibilities, so let's just put it this way: if you are in possession of a Team Edward or Team Jacob bumper sticker, this particular story might not be for you.
2) I'd just like to give a quick shout out to the Pacific Northwest, 'cause baby, I can see Forks from my house. (Well, more or less…)
3) HAPPY HALLOWEEN!
"Welcome," said the Doctor grandly as he swung the doors to the TARDIS open, "to the Pacific Northwest of North America. Home to a temperate rainforest, one of the rarest biomes, which covers only a fraction of one percent of the Earth's land surface."
Rose poked her head out as she tugged her jumper on. "Very green," she commented.
It was. In fact, it was fair to say that green was the dominant feature here. From the little curling ferns springing up from the wet ground to the towering fir trees, everything was a brilliant emerald shade. The TARDIS was parked in a small parking lot off the side of a two-lane highway that was weaving its way through the verdant forest.
"And even though it's rare, the temperate rainforest is one of the most productive ecosystems on Earth," the Doctor enthused as he stepped out of his ship. "Huge, burgeoning amounts of biomass."
"S'lovely," said Rose. "But I thought we were headed to the beach. Did the TARDIS decide to skip the sand this time?"
"Nah," said the Doctor. "We're going to hike in—it's part of the experience! The trailhead's just over here. Only about a mile to go, and it's a gorgeous walk." He hefted Rose's red backpack over his shoulders and reached out to take her hand.
He had a point. Since the Doctor had actually managed to land them on a rare sunny day, everything practically sparkled with loveliness. Birds sang, flowers bloomed, breezes breezed…it was sort of like walking through a fairytale.
The trail ended at a small bluff, which afforded them with a spectacular view of the ocean. The beach was bordered by cliffs on all three sides, totally inaccessible by vehicle. There was a narrow stairway carved into the side of the bluff, and they carefully picked their way down.
When they reached the beach, they wandered over to the southern cliff to poke around in the numerous tide pools, each one its own tiny universe. Afterwards, they sat on a driftwood log and ate lunch. Then they indulged in some snogging, honest-to-goodness snogging, because that was something that they did now, ever since that nasty bit of business with the Beast in the pit.
Despite the sun, the ocean water was really too cold for comfortable swimming, and the beach was really too exposed for any…other activities, so they decided to go explore the hiking trails in the woods.
Nearly an hour later, they were quite far from the main path, so it was a surprise to see another hiker up ahead of them—a man, standing silent and still in the shadows.
"Hullo," called the Doctor cheerfully. "Nice day for a walk, isn't it?"
The man didn't answer.
"You alright?" asked Rose, concerned. They were getting closer, and she could see that the man's head was lowered.
The Doctor squeezed her hand in silent warning. Out of the corner of her eye, Rose could see him reaching for the sonic.
Suddenly, the man spoke. "I'm doing just fine," he said in a lovely, ringing voice. Then he raised his head, revealing bright red eyes. "You, on the other hand…" He chuckled evilly and took a step toward them, out of the shadows.
The Doctor and Rose both stopped as the sun's rays bounced off the stranger's skin in a dazzling array of rainbows.
"Huh," said the Doctor. "Now that's not something you see every day."
"Why's he all…shiny?" asked Rose, tilting her head in puzzlement.
"He's a vampire," said the Doctor with a sigh, letting go of her hand so that he could adjust the settings on the sonic. "They sparkle. It's because they have a crystalline cell structure, which makes them very strong, sort of like granite. But, yes, the end result's a bit silly."
"Just a bit, yeah," said Rose with feeling. She tugged at his sleeve with her free hand as a thought occurred. "Hey, d'you think we could stop off at Sarah Jane's later? I could add vampire to my list."
The Doctor thought it over. "Do you suppose she'd make more of those peanut butter cookies?"
Meanwhile, the vampire was beginning to look a bit put out. "I don't think you two understand the situation," he purred. "You're not going anywhere."
The Doctor pulled the sonic out and activated it. "Funny thing about vampires," he said conversationally to Rose. "Extremely powerful and extremely fast. Very difficult to fight. It's on account of that crystalline cell structure, like I said. But the thing about crystal…"
He trailed off, watching as the vampire suddenly crumbled into pieces in front of them. Rose jumped back to avoid a chunk of arm hitting her on the toes.
"Ah, there we are," he continued. "As I was saying, the thing about crystal is that it has a very predictable resonant frequency. Surprisingly susceptible to sonic vibrations." He held up the screwdriver and waggled his eyebrows at her until she laughed.
They gathered up several of the pieces and tucked them in Rose's backpack so that the Doctor could analyze them. The rest, they burned.
The Doctor sighed as he watched the purple smoke curl upwards. "I was going to suggest that we go get some dinner," he said regretfully. "But I suppose we should deal with this whole vampire situation first."
"Probably," agreed Rose as she shouldered the backpack.
Halfway back down the trail, the plot thickened, as plots are wont to do, when the Doctor and Rose ran into a whole family of vampires. After a few we-won't-sonic-you-if-you-won't-bite-us moments, Edward, Carlisle, and Emmett Cullen introduced themselves as non-threatening vampires and explained that they had come to investigate the obvious signs of another vampire's destruction. Their description of the vampiric version of vegetarianism proved fascinating to the Doctor, and he lost no time in questioning Carlisle on the wheres, whys, and hows of his transformation.
Rose was someone less comfortable with the whole 'we're-creatures-that-yearn-to-murder-you-but-don't-worry-we-won't' thing. Still, she told herself that it really wasn't all that different from spending time with, say, the Slitheen. Less stinky, too (but that wasn't saying much), though the vampires did give off a sort of cloying sweet smell with a faintly burning aftertaste.
The Doctor, thoroughly enjoying this adventure so far, had pulled out a tiny magnifying glass and was busily examining the skin on Carlisle's arm. "Imagine, Rose, vampires with a conscience! Amazing!"
"Yeah, it's great," said Rose with slightly less enthusiasm. She took a little step away from Emmett.
"It just goes to show you the marvelous strength of the human character," he enthused. "Capable of overcoming vampirism and the Dalek factor and the Beast and…" He paused. "Who am I forgetting?"
"Nurse-cat-nuns?" she suggested.
The Doctor grinned at her. "Brilliant."
"I'm amazed that you know so much about vampires," said Carlisle, clearly intrigued by the Doctor's talk. "Also," he added with a frown, "I don't want to alarm you, but you seem to have an extremely strange and pronounced cardiac arrhythmia."
The Doctor just shrugged amicably. "I'm sure it's fine."
"What I want to know is why I can't hear you," said Edward, who had been staring at them both in amazement. "Either one of you. You're both just like Bella."
"Who's Bella?" asked Rose. "And what d'you mean, hear us?"
"He's psychic," said the Doctor, tucking away his magnifying glass for the moment and rocking back and forth on his heels. "Hears the thoughts of everyone, human and vampire, in the nearby area. That must just drive you up the wall," he added, looking with some sympathy at the vampire.
Edward smiled a little. "Sometimes. But it can be useful. Still, I don't understand why it doesn't work on either of you."
"Ah," said the Doctor, nodding. "Right. Well, Rose here is shielded by my ship against telepathic infiltration."
She raised an eyebrow. "I am?"
The Doctor tugged on one ear. "Hope that's alright. I did it after the whole Cassandra thing."
"Oh," said Rose. "Well, I guess that's fine. Could have asked though."
"And as for my mind," said the Doctor, ignoring Rose's mutterings about personal autonomy, "well, let's just say I have my own shields." He grinned.
"Why don't you come with us back to our home?" asked Carlisle. "I'd love a chance to compare notes with you, Doctor. And Rose, you could come meet Bella. She's the human member of our family," he added with a kindly smile.
And so it was agreed that the Doctor and Rose would stop by the Cullen household later that afternoon—after they picked up their, uh, mode of transportation.
"Alien virus," announced the Doctor once they were out of hearing distance of the Cullens.
"That's what's causing people to become vampires?"
He nodded. "I'm nearly certain of it. Just need to perform a few tests."
Rose bit her fingernail pensively. "So if it is, then what do we do?"
"Well…" He ruffled a hand over his hair. "I'm not really sure. Maybe we can find a way to make all the vampires turn vegetarian? Or something. We'll see."
Once they were able to pick up the TARDIS, the Doctor parked it near the bottom of the Cullens' driveway, and he and Rose hiked up to the house to meet the rest of the coven. The rest of the Cullen family proved to be just as interesting as Carlisle, Edward, and Emmett.
The Doctor was particularly fascinated by Alice. "Amazing," he remarked enthusiastically. "A time sensitive human. Well, not human anymore, of course, but still." He ran the sonic over her head, and Rose thought that it was fortunate that the vampire girl didn't know what that device could do on the right setting.
Meanwhile, Carlisle and Edward happily dragged out their lab equipment and set up an impromptu laboratory in one of the spacious rooms off the entryway. The Doctor joined them, and in no time at all, they were up to their eyebrows in Science.
After some of the hubbub had died down, someone thought to introduce the two human girls to each other. Bella got them two glasses of human-friendly lemonade, and they took a seat on the stairs—close enough to observe the action, but still quiet enough to talk.
"So," began Rose with a friendly smile, "you're the lone human in a family of—" she stopped herself just in time from saying aliens, "—vampires. That must do your head in a bit."
"Oh, I don't know," said Bella with a shrug. "You get used to it after awhile. Especially when you're actually in a relationship with one of them."
"Oh," said Rose, blinking. "Er…right. So which one's your boyfriend?"
"Edward," Bella answered, gesturing to the corner of the room where the Doctor, Carlisle, and Edward were gathering around the beakers and Bunsen burners. "But I don't know if boyfriend is really the right word. He is a vampire, after all. And he's a little old to be called anything with 'boy' in it."
"Sure," said Rose, nodding along. "I know what you mean. It's a bit awkward, isn't it, trying to find the right name for…well, a relationship like that." God knew, she wasn't about to go around introducing the Doctor as her boyfriend.
"It does make it complicated. He's so much older than me," said Bella. "He's seen so much."
"How old is he?" asked Rose, curious. The Doctor had said that the virus made the vampires nearly indestructible. Did he mean immortal as well?
"You wouldn't believe me," said Bella with a little laugh.
Bella glanced at her paramour, before leaning in to whisper in Rose's ear, "He's over a hundred years old."
"Oh," said Rose, trying to sound suitably impressed. She took a sip of her drink. "Yes. Well, over a hundred. That is old."
"That's nothing," added Bella with a grin. "Carlisle? He's more than three hundred. Can you believe it?"
"Gobsmacked, for sure," said Rose. Through the open doorway, she could see the Doctor on the other side of the large room suddenly looking up at them. Rose wondered if he could actually hear them from over there.
Then he winked, and she nearly choked on her drink, fighting the urge to laugh. That'd be a yes, then.
"Are you all right?" asked Bella, frowning a little.
"Yeah," said Rose, clearing her throat. "Just down the wrong pipe is all. Well, that must be tough. The age gap, I mean," she added when Bella seemed confused. "I sorta have some experience with that. Y'know, with the Doctor and all."
"Sure," said Bella, nodding as she leaned to the side a little to get a look at the Doctor in the other room. "Of course, a fifteen or twenty year difference isn't really all that much. What is he, thirty-five? Forty?"
"Well…" said Rose, hedging.
"Plus, he looks older than you. Edward will look seventeen forever," said Bella, sighing.
Rose patted her hand. "I can see how that would be difficult," she said sympathetically.
Bella bit her lip. "We have an agreement about that, actually," she said in a low voice.
Bella nodded. "He's agreed to bite me if I marry him."
"Well, it's the only way," protested Bella. "Otherwise I'll die, and he'll be alone."
"But…but…but…" Rose stuttered, trying to wrap her head around the concept. "You won't be human any more. You'll turn into a vampire…won't you?"
"Yes," said Bella slowly. "That's pretty much the point. That way, we can be together forever. The wedding is this summer."
"Oh! That's a bit fast, isn't it? I mean, I see your problem, but why not wait a little?" argued Rose. "At least until you're twenty-five, thirty. That way you'll be sure before you do something that you can't take back."
"Because," said Bella, with the defensive air of someone who has had to argue a point repeatedly, "I want to stay looking like a teenager forever."
Rose looked at her incredulously.
Bella looked back at her, apparently completely serious.
Rose kept staring at her.
Bella raised an eyebrow. "What?"
Just then, the Doctor bounded over. "Rose, you've got to come see this!" he enthused. "Sorry, er, Bella. I only need to borrow Rose for a minute. You can get back to your girl talk in a moment." He grabbed Rose's arm and pulled her away. "Now play nice," he murmured into her ear. "We probably won't be here much longer."
"That girl is crazy," hissed Rose. "Totally crazy. She—"
"Later," interrupted the Doctor in a whisper. "For now, just try not to scare the locals."
"Alright," she muttered, tugging her arm free. "So what did you need me for?"
"Oh, I don't," he answered with a grin. "Well, no more than usual. I just wanted to get you away from her before you could let loose with some sort of ferocious diatribe. I know that look." Before Rose could come up with an appropriate retort to that, he tugged her arm again. "But as long as you're here, come look at what Carlisle has discovered!"
"Yeah, it's amazing," said Rose dryly after the Doctor had given her a whirlwind tour of the Science. "Really fascinating stuff."
The Doctor's face fell. "Alright, no need to humor me," he sniffed. "Go on back to your little friend. We'll be leaving in about half an hour." And with that, he waved her off.
Rose rejoined Bella on the steps and did her best to give the girl a friendly smile. "Sorry about that," she said. "And sorry for…well, you know. Sorry. If you want to talk about it…"
"It's alright," sighed the other girl. "I'm used to it. Nobody approves, really—not even Edward. And then there's the Quileutes, but that's a whole different can of worms."
"We have got to do something about this," said Rose suddenly, pacing back and forth across the TARDIS grates. "It's just not natural."
"Well, yes, of course," the Doctor agreed from the jump seat. He poked his tongue between his teeth, concentrating on the device on his lap. "Could you hand me the trans-coupling solenoid?" When this request was met with a blank look from his companion, he elaborated. "The thingy that looks like a tiny doohickey with a swing arm. Green bit on the top?"
Rose ran her fingers over the array of parts, plucked out the green one, and passed it to him. "I mean, it's just sick is what it is. We can't let it go on."
The Doctor squinted just a bit as he slid the device into place. "You didn't think we were just going to ignore an infestation of vampires, did you?"
"Not the vampires!" She threw her hands in the air. "That girl! Bella! You heard what she's planning on doing!"
The Doctor paused and glanced up from his work. "No, what's she planning?"
"I thought you were listening in."
The Doctor shook his head. "Not really. Didn't want to be rude. So what's she planning?"
"She wants to become a vampire!" Rose spoke every word slowly and deliberately for emphasis. "She's made a pact to get one of them to bite her! And she's getting married to that one bloke—the creepy stalker one!"
"Oh, is that all?" said the Doctor calmly, resuming his work. "I wouldn't worry about it. I've got it all under control." He blew a quick puff of air over a small charcoal filter to remove any excess dust before popping it into the device on his lap. Then he pulled out the sonic screwdriver and started making adjustments.
Rose hopped up on the seat next to him and crossed her legs. "It's just weird," she complained. "D'you know, they don't sleep? The vampires, I mean. So you know what he does every night?"
"What?" asked the Doctor, a little absently, as he ran the sonic over a series of electrical connections.
"He sits in her room and watches her! As she sleeps!" answered Rose with a frustrated wave of her hands. "Can you imagine doing that?"
"No," answered the Doctor honestly. Then he frowned. "Wait. That's not something I'm supposed to be doing, is it?" He turned to look at her quizzically. "Some sort of…non-sleeping boyfriend thing?"
"No!" said Rose with feeling. "Please don't. Seriously." She shuddered. "It'd be creepy as hell."
With a shrug, the Doctor went back to his work.
"I just don't know if I trust them. And the big one, Emmett? He came over and talked with us for a bit, and he weren't half creepy. Kept teasing Bella about her love life. Said he and his girlfriend knocked down a ton of houses in the throes of passion and how Bella and Edward were gonna be tame by comparison." Rose rolled her eyes and slumped back against the seat. "What time did you say we'd go back to their house?"
"Six," said the Doctor absently. "Should be a quick meeting—we'll have enough time to get some dinner afterwards, if you're hungry."
"Sounds good." With a sigh, she sat and watched him work.
"You know," said the Doctor, breaking the silence after a few moments as he eased a small circuit chip into place, "if you're using the amount of destruction you are able to accomplish as a metric of the success of your sexual escapades…oh, there!" He beamed as the chip snapped into position. "There we are. A retrograding viral denaturizer. Perfect."
"Brilliant," agreed Rose emphatically. "But what were you saying before?"
"Hmm?" The Doctor set the device carefully on the TARDIS console. With a flip of a switch, he activated it, and the TARDIS control room was filled with the sound of the little machine humming away. The Doctor made a sound of approval and then turned back to Rose. "Sorry, what was that?"
"I was just wondering what you were going to say before. About the…escapades," she reminded him with a little grin, running her tongue over her front teeth and reaching for his tie. He was so cute when he got all…sciencey.
"Oh, right," he said, letting her reel him in closer. "Weeeell…" He walked two of his fingers up the outside of her thigh. "I was just thinking that if you're measuring your erotic success in terms of property damage…" His fingers brushed, feather-light, across the top of her leg, and she drew in a quick breath in response. "You miiiiight not be doing it right."
Rose snickered as their foreheads touched and his other hand joined the first.
They ended up being somewhat late for the meeting. On the upside, though, there was no property damage at all.
Before leaving the TARDIS, the Doctor grabbed the denaturizer and extracted a small container of white powder from its base. He held it up to the light. "Perfect," he exclaimed, before tucking it into one pocket. "Let's go."
"So what's the plan?" asked Rose as they hiked up the long driveway. "Do you think we'll be able to work something out? And what about Bella? Should we, I dunno, stage an intervention or something?"
The Doctor seemed amused by this. "Let's not get ahead of ourselves. Besides, I'm sure things will all work out."
"Doctor," she protested, but he cut her off, signaling that they were within hearing distance of the house.
Once they reached the front door, the Doctor paused and took out the container of powder. He popped the lid off, revealing a secondary shaker lid underneath, and began liberally dusting himself and Rose with the powder.
"What the…" coughed Rose, waving the clouds of dust out of her face. "What was that for?"
The Doctor poured the remaining powder into his left hand and carefully made a fist. "Just a little something I cooked up. Nothing to worry about." He capped the container and rang the doorbell.
"That's what you always say," grumbled Rose as she wiped off her face.
The door opened, and Esme smiled at them both in greeting. "Doctor and Rose, come on in. We were starting to get worried."
"Yes, so sorry to be late," said the Doctor, patting her on the shoulder as he stepped across the threshold, leaving a faint white handprint behind. "Where is everyone?"
"In the dining room," she answered politely. "Just follow me." She shut the door after Rose and then led them both to the room where the Cullens were all gathered around the table.
"Doctor," said Edward, standing up. "Rose."
"Hello again," said the Doctor jovially, grabbing Edward's hand and shaking it enthusiastically. "So glad we got the chance to stop by once more." Making his way around the table, he tousled Alice's hair. "Unfortunately, something's come up." He clapped Jasper's shoulder. "Rose and I must be going."
"Really?" said Carlisle, clearly perplexed by the Doctor's manic pixie routine. "I had hoped we'd be able to continue our discussion about—"
"Yes, it's a shame," said the Doctor, reaching out to shake his hand. "You've a brilliant mind, and I mean that sincerely. But we must be off. Isn't that right, Rose?"
"Oh," said Rose, flummoxed. "Right. Er, bye then." She extended an awkward hand to Emmett and then Jasper and endured a slightly uncomfortable hug with Rosalie. "See you later." She moved back to the Doctor and started to follow him out, wondering what the hell he was planning.
"Oh, one last thing," said the Doctor, stopping suddenly and turning back to the table. "Do remember to…ah...Ah…AH…" Clapping his left hand to his face, he gave a gigantic sneeze. "ACHOO!" In the aftermath, a cloud of white powder settled down across the table and across the somewhat repulsed vampires.
"Blimey," said the Doctor, reaching for a hanky from his pocket. "That's what I get for never vacuuming the dust out from under the Time Rotor. Now, what was I going to say?" He paused, looking thoughtful. "Oh well, sneezed it right out of my head, I suppose. Anyway, best of luck, and hope to see you again maybe!"
With that, he grabbed Rose's hand and practically dragged her out of the house, off the porch, and down the driveway, grinning like a lunatic the whole time.
Once they were back in the TARDIS, the Doctor shook his head violently to clear away the powder that had settled in his hair. "Well, that went pretty well, I think."
"Wait," said Rose, confused. "What just happened?"
The Doctor tossed the retrograding viral denaturizer container on the jumpseat and started tossing levers and switches to start the dematerializing sequence. "I cured them."
"You…cured them." Rose rolled that thought around for a moment. "You cured them. Of…of being vampires?"
The Doctor looked ridiculously pleased. "Yep!" He grinned at her. "Now all we need is a nice long hose."
"A hose," Rose repeated. "A hose. But…but you cured them?"
"Easy-peasy," he said, crowing a little. "I formulated a retrovirus capable of targeting cells mutated by the vampire virus. My little creation finds the altered DNA and reworks it back to its original form. A couple of hours, maybe a few sneezes later, and they're human again."
"You cured the vampires," said Rose, starting to chuckle. "They're going to just…sneeze back into ordinary humans."
"I cured the vampires," he said with an ear-to-ear grin.
"Oh my god," said Rose, throwing back her head, laughing. "You cured the vampires!"
The Doctor caught her around the waist, laughing, and pulled her close, leaning back against one of the TARDIS struts for support.
"And the hose?" gasped Rose, out of breath from giggling. "What's that for?"
"Ah, and here's the really lovely bit," said the Doctor, letting go of her and dashing off to root through one of the cupboards. "The hose," he said, pulling out a length of green garden hose, "is to seed the clouds."
"With the retrovirus?"
"Got it in one," he said, hooking the hose up to the denaturalizer. "We're going to fly over the world, scattering the retrovirus into the clouds so that when it rains, it will get spread everywhere. Vampires out in the weather will catch it directly. Humans who are exposed will become carriers. Within a year or so, it will have spread globally—no more vampires."
"Oh, that's brilliant! But," she added with a grin, "let's stop and pick up dinner first."
An hour later, and they were spinning happily over the clouds, a garden hose dangling out of the TARDIS doors, channeling the white powder into the atmosphere. The Doctor and Rose sat on either side of it with a pizza box on the ramp behind them.
"So, a nice, tidy solution," said Rose, tossing her last bit of crust to a passing seagull. "Much easier than usual."
"Exactly," said the Doctor, sliding his hand over hers and tugging her closer. "Good work all around."
They sat in contented silence for a moment.
"So, Doctor," said Rose, tipping her head to rest on his shoulder, "there's just one thing I'm wondering about."
He leaned slightly to nuzzle her hair. "And what's that?"
"What about the tribe of werewolves?"