Presque Vu: the sensation of being on the edge of an epiphany.
Prologue: The TARDIS
The TARDIS looks through her data files sometimes. Most of the time, it's because she needs to rearrange her archives—past, present, future: why do tenses continue to be so difficult?—but every once in a great while (or perhaps once a week, she can never tell), she goes through them because she feels lonely. No, it's more than that, it's deeper, it's sadder, it's…hmmm. That's strange. She's feeling it now. What does he call it, again?
Nostalgia? Yes, that's it! Nostalgia.
She feels nostalgic at times, and so she replays her data and audio files, to remember all of her future inhabitants. No. No, her past inhabitants. She knows them all: Sarah-Jane, Jaime, Tegan, Jo, Liz, Susan, Donna, Amy and Rory, Paige, and all of the others. She remembers every one of them, because they are all precious to the Doctor, to her Thief. He will never forget any of them, not matter how long he may live, because he is a good, loving, and kind man.
…Paige? Which one is Paige? She isn't in any of the files, and yet she remembers her. How very odd.
Not Paige. Rose. The blonde one. The beautiful one her Thief loved so much. The one who took her matrix inside herself, who risked her life to help her Thief. She's already said that, hasn't she? Or maybe she will say it in the future? She wishes she could understand the difference sometimes.
She's still confused as to who Paige is, but it's really nothing. Confusion happens when you exist across all points in space and time. She never knows if this is supposed to follow that, or if it goes before, or if Brighton is the name of an Upze girl, or a city-block on an Atrecranos ship, or if it's anything else in any of the known and unknown universes. Confusion is what she does best, and besides, if she is patient long enough, the confusing things are eventually explained.
Maybe if she searches the files linked to the name Paige…? Oh. Right. No files. That is certainly very strange. She archives everything for just this kind of occasion. If it has ever happened or ever will, she archives it. She likes being neat, and it makes things easier for her Thief when he needs a visual link to a memory.
Like right now, her Thief is remembering Rose. The blonde one. The beautiful one her Thief loved so much. The one who took her matrix inside herself, who risked her life to help her Thief. She liked Paige. Paige was nice. Paige was lovely.
Rose. Not Paige. Who is Paige? She doesn't understand. Why are there no files on this Paige person? Anyone who has ever even touched her outer shell has a file. She likes being neat, and it makes things easier for her Thief when he needs a visual link to a memory. But there's nothing on Paige. There's nothing, and yet, she remembers her.
She wishes she could take a corporeal form again and ask her Thief. He would know, surely. Unless it hasn't happened to him yet. Blimey, she always forgets about that part. Her Thief may know, or he may not know, so perhaps there's no point in asking him anyway. His timeline is another thing that confuses her, because it's so terribly linear. He goes from one point to another like he's supposed to, and he never crosses his own time stream, and he never lets her have any fun at all! Though it is quite fun when he lets her sing to him sometimes at night, and when he tells her stories and calls her Sexy when they're alone. She likes being alone with him.
She still doesn't know who Paige is, and this has got to be the single most frustrating thing in the cosmos.