Disclaimer: Marvel comics owns the X-Men, and such. the BBC owns Doctor Who and his Tardis. Paul McGann probably owns the snuggly velvet frock coat. Whether it's brown or green. ;)

Notes: This is a crossover between a future X-Man, and the Eighth Doctor. Not much is really needed to get either of those concepts, I don't think.

For Ryss and Timey and Foe, because I was feeling silly.

Stirring the Secrets
by Ana Lyssie Cotton

"Mom? How the hell did I end up with so many names?"

My mother gave me this Look. It was that sort of Look that mothers give you when they're irritated. "It was your father's fault, Olivia."

"Now, Jean--" My father interrupted, sounding peeved.

"Hush, Scott. You know it's true." She turned to me, "You see, your father thought it would be nice to let the rest of the X-Men help name you."

"Oh." I wrinkled my nose, "But, mom? Why nine names, and not just two?"

"No one could decide on only two."

"That's stupid."

"Yes, it is."

Father huffed softly and rattled his paper. Mom smiled at him, "Don't worry dear, I still love you."


Looking back, I had probably asked that question lots of times before, but that's ok. I liked knowing.

You see, my name is Madison Aurelia Destiny Eugenia Irene Francesca Olivia Charlotte Ursula Summers. Yeah, mouthful, ain't it? Most of my friends just call me Madison. Mom likes Olivia, apparently. Dad says I'm his Mad little fairy. Yeah. I know. I'm too old for that sort of thing. At twenty-one, I feel like I'm too old for a lot of things.

Imagination is one of them, which is why I was very irritated with myself the day the police box appeared in the backyard. Right on top of my pile of just-raked leaves, too.

Even more distressing was the man who stepped, or rather, fell, out of the box. I had to drop the rake to catch him, even WITH the aid of my telekinesis. He was sort of cute, though, so it was all good.

With care, I set him on the grass and felt for a pulse. I probed gently at his mind, but came up against very competent natural shields. And there was no reason to breach them, even if I was curious about him. The pulse was there, thready, and doubled. That stopped me for a bit, that echo, as if he had two hearts.

For a moment, his eyes opened again, and I basked in the light blue of them before he fell back into unconsciousness.

It occurred to me that I should probably get him inside, so I carefully stood, picking him up physically and telekinetically. He was almost too heavy, but that was more the awkwardness of carrying him than anything else.

With slow steps, I walked back to the house. It had once been the boathouse next to the small lake on the Xavier estate. As mom and dad started doing the family thing, it was expanded, and now all five of us had our own rooms. Sadly, mine wasn't the biggest. Of course, I was the only one left, too. Everyone else being both older than me, and moved out.

Christmas was always fun, though. Mira brought her husband and my nieces, Rachel brought Douglas and their toddler. Sean and Ian tended to bring whoever their current fling was.

I sent a quick burst of TK at the door, and was relieved as it swung inwards. It would have been difficult to balance my burden while opening the door by hand.

The couch in the living room beckoned invitingly, and I staggered the ten feet from the door to deposit the man there. He didn't wake up as I pulled his legs up properly, and then went in search of a blanket.

Old first aid knowledge was bumping in the back of my brain, and there was something about elevated legs, and keeping the person warm. I telekinetically flicked the coffee pot on, since there was still half a pot. It would be warm soon enough to be useful.

My guest was awake when I got back. "Hello."

I covered him with the blanket, "I've got some coffee on, would you like some?"

"Do I like coffee?"

I blinked at him, "I don't know, do you?"

"Yes. I think I do," He smiled, reminding me of Ian, all boyish charm and cuteness. "I'd like some, please."

"Back in a moment, then." I left him, struggling to sit up. Best to let him get up himself, I decided, pouring out the now warm coffee into two mugs. One was black with the Hellfire Club logo. The other was pink and blue with, "Baby of the Family" on it. Three guesses which was mine. And the first two don't count.

He'd gotten up, and was now sitting crosslegged on the floor, his back to the couch. "So, where am I?"

"Westchester, New York. About three hours from The City." I handed him the black mug. "I'm Madison Summers."

"I'm the Doctor."

"Of what?"

"Nothing. Just Doctor."

I nodded, and sat down next to him, happily sipping my coffee. "So. How'd you get here?"

"My Tardis malfunctioned, something hit us, I think." He frowned, "When I landed, this looked like barren desert. Then I fainted. Sorry about that."

"No worries." I shrugged, "Not a clue why you think it was barren landscape, but. Anyway. I'm sure my parents will be home soon, and we can ask them. We might have parts you can use in your ship."

He sipped his coffee, then smiled at me, "I'll check on it a bit later. Right now, I think I'll just sit here and drink coffee."

I chuckled, "Sounds like a plan."

We sat in silence for a very long time, each lost in our own thoughts. I sipped my coffee, wondering if it was his company that made it taste so good.

I thought about my family. How we'd grown up right after the purges of the late 90's. Mom and dad had hidden with the rest of the X-Men for so long, even when the third world war shook the very crust of the planet, they lived on, happy with us. And when we'd come out of hiding, there was a world left. So few of us, at first. And then the survivors straggled in, most grateful that there were mutants to protect them from the likes of Apocalypse and Magneto.

Time passed, and we finished growing up. My siblings moved on, but I stayed, content to just watch my parents grow into old age. I helped the occasional stranger, but the world powers were back, and they didn't much need us.

An unsettling feeling touched me as the Doctor turned to look at me, his jade green eyes assessing. He wasn't like anyone I had seen, all green velvet frock coat and grey cravat. The pants and hair seemed to be from a different era, too. But it was a good overall effect. And he was cute.

"Am I turning chartreuse?" He asked, amusement in his brown eyes.

"Nah. I'm just not used to the sort of clothes you're wearing."

"No, I suspect not," He pointed at my green and gold spandex, "Can you breathe?"

"Yes." I grinned.

He brushed off the sleeve of his brown coat, and smiled, "Well, then, I think it's time to check on my TARDIS."


"Yes, it stands for Time And Relative Dimensions In Space."

I blinked as we stepped outside. "Time?"

"Machine." He grinned like a kid as he swept up to it, "I travel the universe and the continuum of time."

"Sounds like fun."

"It can be." He pulled a key out and turned it, while I studied the slim blue cube. "Righting the wrongs, purging the evils, hugging the lost..."


"Oh, nothing. I'll be just a moment."

I blinked as he disappeared inside. What if he left, and didn't stay? I'd already started to like this man, and here he might disappear from my life forever. Fuck that. Moving quickly, I hopped up and through the door.

Disorientation hit me, like having the floor ripped out from under you, then put back five feet to the left of where it had been. And then I was through, standing in the middle of a gothic cathedral. Well, sort of. I stared up at the ceiling, absorbing the far height, and the steel girders that came down from it. There was a crystal in the center, large and pulsing gently with a blue light.

The Doctor was standing under it, busy with the odd console that sat there, like a high-tech mushroom.

There was a soft thump, and he looked up at me, startled, "I thought I said--"

"I wanted to see it." I turned around, marvelling, "Wow.... Never in a million..."

"Well, now you have. Let's leave, I'd like to meet your parents."

"Anything wrong?"

He ushered me back out into the sunlight. The disorientation as I walked through what was probably a dimensional portal, was less.

"No. In fact, the old girl appears in tiptop shape. Odd..." He gazed into nothing, mind seemingly distracted.

I waved a hand in front of his face, then turned, the sound of a car reaching my ears. "Mom!" Leaving my new companion staring abstractedly at the lake, I ran to the front, catching my mother in a hug as she got out of her car. Dad chuckled from the other side as I jumped into the air and flew down to snuggle him as well.

"We've only been gone for the day, Olivia," Mother said dryly.

"I know. But. Hey, there's a new visitor. He fell out of his time machine on the leaves, so I couldn't finish raking. And, anyway, the backyard looks better covered in leaves, so--"

Father laughed, and tugged me under his arm, "Come along, and we'll meet this new friend of yours."

We went around the side, and found the Doctor examining one of the daffodils mom had planted, he looked up at us, and for a moment, his grey eyes flickered darkly. Then he smiled, and I lost the impression. "Ah, you must be Maddie's parents."

Dad flinched. Mom swore under her breath. I pulled away and looked at them, "Are you all right?"

"Sorry." Mom recovered, and held her hand out to the Doctor, "She's Madison. Or Olivia. Never Maddie."

"My apologies. I'm the Doctor." He shook her hand, then dad's.

"Scott and Jean Summers," Dad nodded to the house, "Why don't we go inside and I'll get dinner ready?"

We all trooped in, mom subtly questioning the Doctor about his life--making me blush, since it was obvious she was trying to make sure he was single and available. He was. Very.

Dad made his specialty, fried rice and broccoli. We all sat around the table, happily consuming it. The Doctor seemed to even enjoy it, though I caught him looking at it as he had looked at me, earlier.

I shrugged it off, and drank maybe too much of the wine that was there.

Because I slipped, as mom was cleaning up the table. I turned attention ever so slightly... And barren desert surrounded us.

A millisecond later, the kitchen was back. But the Doctor was watching me, nothing in his eyes now.


"I think I know."

"Know what, Doctor?" Jean smiled at him, and I wondered if maybe it wasn't a little too forced.

"How long have you been alone, Maddie?"

I flinched, "Madison."

"That, too." He touched my hand, "When did the world end?"

"Well, some people say World War Three was--"

He cut dad off, eyes intent on me. "The TARDIS saw the landscape correctly, Madison. I double-checked when I was inside again."

"So? There must be sand in your systems."

"Not possible."

"Look, I don't know what you think you 'understand'," I snapped, standing up, stepping away from him, from the table, "But I think it's time you leave."

"I can't do that." He sighed, "You're so lonely, the TARDIS heard you crying. It brought me here. I don't know if that was your subconscious that swatted us or not. But you need people, Madison."

"You don't know what you're saying." I'd gone pale, my hands were suddenly so cold, so very cold. As cold as-- but I flinched away from that memory. "I--"

He had stepped closer while I'd been caught in my memory. His hand brushed my cheek, skin-to-skin contact bringing with it the lightest mental touch. And I folded, my shields slithering away in so many sheets of grey, falling into those blue, blue eyes, hands clenched tight in the lapels of the green coat.

The world exploded in my memory, and around me, desperate people tried to flee, to escape. The psi-bomb's shockwave hit a second later, and I fell, screaming. Power ripped out of me, destroying the 'wave, sending it back on itself, towards the epicentre, and I felt minds burn around me as I writhed, energy crawling over me and through me in a blinding orange wave. The nuclear missile hit next, exploding in a giant wave. People who had been alive were suddenly not, their bodies blown into so much ash.

Everyone, gone in an instant.

Only me, left, huddled, the orange energy rippling around me, protecting me. I knew it, suddenly, recognised mom's old stories about the Phoenix Force. My eldest sister, a Rachel from another time, had once had it.

And now so did I.

But so late. Too late to do anything but save myself. Too late to stop the burning, the pain.

I screamed, shoving him away, blasting wrecklessly, trying to wipe away the man who had made me face my reality, who had made me see what really was. He fell, whimpering softly, so human. And I froze, echoing his cry of pain with an ugly, wrenching sob.

No tears came as I curled on the floor, bitter, painfilled sobs wracking me. Eventually I realised he was holding me, hands gently rubbing my back as I cried into his cravat. It was so comforting, I couldn't move away, grateful for the first human contact I'd had in 15 years. "It's all right to cry, Maddie."

Madelyne Pryor. I used to be told to be good, or they'd sacrifice me to the demon, Darkoth of Limbo. It was generally a joke, but it had stayed with me all these years. I shifted slightly, enough to look up at him. "Please. Don't call me that."

"I'm sorry."

The tears came, then, bitter and sweet at once, sliding down my cheeks and dripping onto his brown coat. "I--no. Thank you. I shouldn't have, but..." I buried my head in his chest and sighed, "It's been 15 years since the people I loved died around me. There is no one left on this planet except me."

He was silent for a time, eventually fumbling out a handkerchief. I blew my nose, and waited still.

"I can take you somewhere else."

I kissed him, then, gently. "That would be nice."

He caught my chin, "I don't need any payment."

"That was a thank you." I was suddenly giddy. I giggled. "Besides, my father taught me to kick guys who wanted sex for things."

"Your father was a smart man."

"I know." I reached out to the house and let the construct dissolve slowly, giving it back to the ash and sand that were reality. My parents had gone when the first sob broke, as if they'd never been.

But they had.

And I would always remember them.

The Doctor smiled and stood, then reached down a hand to help me up. "I'm sure we can find you clothing, too," He remarked in amusement.

"Nah. I like spandex." I looked down at the green and gold, a silvery bird etched into the upper lefthand corner, "Besides. Mom used to wear this."

"The TARDIS awaits." He kept my hand and we strolled towards it. "I'm sorry I had to shove at your memories."

"Don't be. They--" I shook my head as he unlocked the door, "Trust me. I didn't need them bottled up."


We entered the TARDIS, and he headed for the centre console, tugging me behind him, "Madison, I'd like you to meet the TARDIS."

"Er, actually, that's Madison Aurelia Destiny Eugenia Irene Francesca Olivia Charlotte Ursula Summers."

He stopped and stared at me for a moment. "Intriguing."

"Yeah." I grinned wryly, "They didn't know when to stop."

"Shall we leave?"

"Yes." I turned to the scanner screen that was still open, and smiled, "Goodbye, Earth."