Liz sipped her coffee and placed one for the Doctor on his lab worktop, where he ignored it, just as he had ignored every other overture she'd made since they got back from Wenley Moor that afternoon. She'd had no idea what to say, he wasn't saying anything. The journey had been long and silent, and there'd been the most appalling row when the Brigadier got back to HQ later and the Doctor had stormed in to confront him about 'murdering' the Silurians. Liz had seen hardened UNIT soldiers sidling for the exits as the sound of raised voices threatened to blister the paint, and the racket had ended only when the Doctor stormed out of the Brigadier's office.
Now, he was tinkering with some alien piece of machinery that meant nothing to her, she was tired after the hours they'd spent searching for a cure for the Silurian epidemic, and all she really wanted was a hot bath and a good night's sleep.
She had just decided to go and ask the Brigadier if it would be alright for her to go home when the door opened and Lethbridge-Stewart walked in. He was carrying a stack of folders and, without a word, he dropped them onto the Doctor's worktop.
The Doctor glanced at them, gave the Brigadier a sour look and went back to his tinkering. It didn't matter - the Brigadier was looking at the folders as he spoke. "These have just arrived," he announced, glancing briefly at the front of each folder before separating them into three separate piles with several folders in each. "They're casualty reports. The names and details of all the people who died in the Silurian attack."
The Doctor appeared not to take any notice, but Liz was horrified. "So many!"
She went across to stand beside the Brigadier and opened one of the red folders in the middle pile.
"The red folders are service personnel and police," he said, as she slowly turned page after page of faxed photographs and typed details – names, ranks, next of kin…
She shut the folder and put it down, wondering whether there was anything more they could have done to prevent such a toll. The Brigadier, to her surprise, seemed to understand – there was a look of such sympathy on his face when she looked up at him that she had to turn away, and she felt his hand squeeze her shoulder, just for a moment.
When he spoke again, she could hear the anger in his voice. "The blue folders are civilians. We don't have all their details yet, just the names and next of kin." She heard him take a deep breath and heard his voice shake as he went on: "The green folders are the children."
"Dear God." There were two green folders in front of Liz. She didn't trust herself to open them.
"You take a look through those files, Doctor –" He practically spat the word "- and take a good long hard look at what your precious Silurians did to us, before you dare call me a murderer! Do you think I like killing? Funny, I didn't hear you objecting when we wiped out the cybermen or the Great Intelligence – don't you think we could have come to some nice, cozy 'share-the-planet' arrangement with them, if we'd tried hard enough?"
The Doctor didn't move, and the Brigadier shook his head. He looked tired, Liz thought, and she realised he hadn't had any more sleep than she had these past few days. As though reading her mind, he said, "Get some rest, Miss Shaw. The Doctor clearly doesn't need it but I'm sure you do." He looked down at the folders again and ran a hand back through his hair, then glanced at his watch and said, "I'm going home. If I'm lucky I'll be in time to read a bedtime story to a little girl whose name, by the grace of whatever gods you believe in, Doctor, is not listed in those folders." He nodded to Liz and said, "Goodnight, Miss Shaw," then turned on his heel and left the room.
Liz stared after him. It hadn't even occurred to her that he might have a life outside the walls of UNIT, let alone have a child.
The Doctor's sigh brought her attention back to the moment. "I forgot," he said, dropping into a chair and rubbing his face as he was wont to do when at a loss.
"Forgot? Forgot what?" Liz pulled up another chair and sat down next to him.
"I forgot two things, Liz. Firstly, I forgot that the Brigadier has a child he loves – my brain must still be a bit scrambled from my regeneration. And secondly, I forgot how powerful love can be."
Liz looked at the folders on the table and remembered the Brigadier's anger as he spoke. "He cared about all these people," she said, "Not just one."
"Yes, I know. But that one…" He looked at her for the first time since they'd witnessed the explosions on Wenley Moor. "If he had a choice between saving everyone else on earth, or saving his daughter, who do you think he'd choose?" He shook his head. "Those poor Silurians. If they'd just targeted the military I might have had a chance of persuading the Brigadier to spare them. As it was – they didn't stand a chance…"