Fandom(s): Doctor Who (modern)
Characters: David Tennant, Eleventh Doctor, Amy Pond, Rory Williams
Pairing(s): None (well, Amy and Rory)
Rating: PG, maybe PG-13
Warnings: Character death
Genre: Sci-fi, adventure
Summary: While filming his final specials for Doctor Who, David Tennant finds himself in the TARDIS, face-to-face with a future incarnation of the character he portrays, his childhood hero. When he discovers that he can't return to his own world, he must determine his place in this strange yet familiar universe.
Word count (chapter): 1932
Master post link: Master post
Rory was glued to the monitor, watching the Doctor and looking for any sign of Amy. The Dalek often returned to the room to search, and the Doctor took every opportunity to taunt it. While he was terrified for Amy, Rory was elated that apparently she was doing a good job of evading the alien's search. Footsteps in the hallway alerted him to the arrival of his friend.
"It hasn't found Amy yet, and the Doctor is still trapped, but..." His words trailed off as he saw David. "Uh, I've never seen you in that before."
David swept up the stairs to the console, his long brown overcoat billowing behind him. Under it, he wore a tight, crumpled blue suit with a light blue shirt and a red tie that matched his red high-top trainers. He'd gelled the hair on the top of his head so that it stood on end. "It's... It's what the Doctor used to wear. I never thought I'd wear this again. It's weird wearing someone else's clothes. I hope he's had them cleaned since…” He faltered. “Just... don't say anything, okay?" He looked heartily embarrassed.
"Yeah, uh, sure." Rory was confused. He had no idea how a change of clothes would help anything. "What's the plan?"
Inhaling through his nose, David seemed to be trying to gather confidence. "The plan is to confuse that Dalek long enough to free the Doctor by presenting it with another Doctor. If we can find another sonic screwdriver, you can use it on the panel. That with the Doctor’s sonic will break the deadlock. Then, getting Amy out of there, that, I'll leave to him. Give me a moment." David started searching through the pockets of his jacket and trousers.
Rory's jaw dropped as he realised what the actor was proposing to do, and he sputtered in amazement. “You... You’re going to distract the Dalek by pretending to be the Doctor? You can’t do that! It’ll kill you!”
“Have to. Gotta get the Doctor free, to save Amy. No other way. I’ve pretended to be the Doctor before. Pretty convincingly, I think. I can do it again.” Not finding what he was looking for, David stuffed his hands into the pockets of his overcoat. A strange, faraway look came over his face as he felt around in the pockets, and he bit his lip.
"You okay, David?" Rory took a step toward him, one hand outstretched.
"Yeah. Yeah, I'm fine." He didn't sound fine. He sounded distracted, disturbed. "Was… was, uh... was hoping the sonic would be in one of these pockets.” A metallic swoosh caught his attention. “Ah, there!" He hopped over to the console and grabbed the item sitting in the slot that normally held the Doctor’s green sonic screwdriver. Rory had never seen the device before: a small, slim gray rod, black on one end with a blue crystal on the other. David gazed at it fondly, extending and retracting its tip. "There we go!" His suddenly bright voice quivered with excitement. "Lovely! Oh! One more thing, and we're ready!"
David leapt down the stairs, startling Rory, and ducked under the console. Flopping to the ground on his back, he slipped himself under the TARDIS mechanics. Rory followed him downstairs, where he could hear David babbling to himself. "They should be right here, unless he's changed the configuration. OH!" The violence of the exclamation made Rory jump. "He did! Why would he do that? No wonder the ride gets bumpier all the time! Got to have a word with him about that. Ah, there they are. Right behind the spectrolith prism, aha!" The whir of the screwdriver emanated from the machine. "Got it!" David pushed himself back out, and stuffed something in his jacket pocket as he got up. "Now we're ready! Rory, you stay in here and watch. I’m the distraction. When you see an opportunity to get out safely, get to the panel and use this.” He handed the screwdriver to him. ”Got it?"
"Yeah, sure. Uh, David?” Rory squared himself in front of his friend and grasped him by the shoulders. “What's going on? What are you doing? You're saying weird things and you just vandalised the TARDIS. And your accent has changed."
David's shoulders drooped, as if all of his sudden energy had drained out of his body. A haze of confusion clouded his face, and grimacing, he shook his head violently to clear it. "I know." His normal accent had returned. "I know what's happening. It was always going to happen."
"What is it? What's happening?"
David’s eyes, unnerved and desperate, locked with his friend’s. "I'm becoming the Doctor. I have to. It's the only way to help them." Inhaling deeply, David closed his eyes for a very long second. When they opened again, Rory saw himself reflected in dark pools of infinite time and space and he staggered backwards, mesmerised. David straightened, his boundless energy returning. “Now. Let’s save Amy.” Flashing Rory a brilliant, impish grin, he sprinted for the door.
"Oh, give it up, Dalek." The Doctor's scathing tones mocked the metallic soldier that was circling around the room and blasting large objects out of the way. "You can't find her. You can't even do that right."
The Dalek continued to search. “I - WILL - WAIT. THE - HUMAN - FEMALE - WILL - BECOME - TIRED. I - WILL - FIND - HER. YOU - WILL - GIVE - ME - THE - TEMPORAL - STABILISER - FOR - THE - HUMAN - FEMALE.”
"And yet, the longer you wait, the more time I have to get out of your silly little prison." The Doctor spun on his heel, glancing around himself again.
The Dalek's dome turned to glare him down. “YOUR - SONIC - PROBE - IS - USELESS. YOU - CARRY - NO - OTHER - TOOLS - OR - WEAPONS. THE - DOCTOR - WILL - NOT - ESCAPE.”
"I don't need to escape."
The Dalek swiveled around to find the source of the new voice and darted backwards at the sight of David emerging from the TARDIS. “YOU - ARE - THE - DOCTOR! HOW - IS - THIS - POSSIBLE? EXPLAIN! EXPLAIN!”
"Oh, I got the invitation to your party and just happened to be in the neighbourhood." He clasped his hands behind his back as he surveyed the shambles of the engine room. "Love the decor. Have you got nibbles?"
“I - HAVE - THE - DOCTOR. YOU - ARE - EXPENDABLE. YOU - WILL - BE - EXTERMINATED.”
"Now, that, I wouldn't do if I were you." He rubbed his chin with his forefinger and thumb. "You see, he's my future. You kill me, and he stops existing. You kill him, and I just won’t come by when I’m him. Even if you survive the paradoxes, you still won't have that circuit." He strolled around the room, and the Dalek, though obviously confused and thinking, glided to a position guarding the force field switch. David neared the Doctor's prison, leaning toward it with his hands in his trouser pockets. "Hullo, Doctor! Comfy in there?"
"Better than a lot of prisons we’ve been in. Took you long enough, Doctor.”
“Couldn’t decide on a tie.”
“You’ve got too many. Keep it simple, I say.”
“And wear a bow tie? Next, you’ll be wearing a funny hat. I think I still have the Presidency hat somewhere. Shall I get it for you?”
“YOU - WILL - GIVE - ME - THE - TEMPORAL - STABILISER! COMPLY! COMPLY!”
David spun back to the Dalek and clucked his tongue. “We were having a conversation! Don’t you know it’s not polite to interrupt? One-track mind, you are. Is this what you want?” David fished the component from his pocket and held it up where the Dalek could see it clearly. It advanced on him, and he backed up towards the door, away from the forcefield panel.
“YOU - WILL - BE - EXTERMINATED. I - WILL - OBTAIN - THE - STABILISER."
"Paradoxes. Remember?" He dangled the component between two fingers.
"NON-FATAL - INJURY - WILL - SUFFICE."
David dove to the side as a Dalek beam shot at him. “Oh, good one, Doctor,” he muttered to himself. “It always comes to this, doesn’t it?” As he ducked behind one of the engine casings, the TARDIS door opened and Rory jumped out, aiming the blue screwdriver at the panel. Its whirring attracted the attention of the Dalek and as it swiveled its eyestalk around to see the new threat, another whirring joined the first as the Doctor shot the panel with his green screwdriver. The deadlock shattered, showering the floor with sparks as the force field fell. The Doctor immediately ducked behind another pile of rubble as Rory dodged back into the TARDIS and slammed the door.
“THE - DOCTOR - HAS - ESCAPED! EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE!”
The Doctor and David continued dodging the Dalek attacks, keeping it between them to divide its attention. “Toss me the stabiliser, will you?” the Doctor called as he dodged a shot.
“Can’t risk it.” David popped his head out from behind a pile of rubble and dove back down as a beam blasted the wall above him. “Dalek gets it and the TARDIS’ll be running on shuffle, too.”
“Not much different from how she usually steers.”
“OI! TIN POT!” Amy roared from the doorway and started winging every piece of metal she could find at the Dalek. As it rounded on her, she dove back out into the corridor.
David didn’t waste the opportunity. “Catch, Doctor!” He lobbed the stabiliser circuit over the Dalek, and the Doctor caught it easily.
“It’s over, Dalek. You’re done here.” The Doctor rose from behind the rubble pile, holding the stabiliser circuit casually in one hand. The Dalek’s eyestalk turned to him, and it seemed to cower, retreating backwards.
“You should’ve just accepted the time you got.” David emerged from behind his cover, sweeping his coat back to thrust his hands in his pockets.
“Instead, you got us involved.” Eyeing the Dalek with cool detachment, the Doctor stowed his screwdriver in his pocket.
“You got me involved, and I’m not happy about that.” David stood with his feet apart, his chin tucked in as he glared at the Dalek, his eyes blazing with anger.
“Your problem is, you don’t know anything about your emergency temporal shift. This temporal stabiliser will secure its navigation…” The Doctor pressed a few buttons on the circuit, holding down the last one, and a wide blue beam emanated from it, shining on the Dalek’s carapace.
“...But, coupled with a horometrical amplifier, it can send you to times you’ve never even dreamed of.” David pulled a spherical object from his jacket pocket.
“NO! YOU - WILL - NOT - SHIFT - ME!” The Dalek backed away from David.
“You’re out of time, Dalek.” David activated the orb, and the Dalek seemed to implode, screaming as it shrunk and disappeared into a single point.
The Doctor dashed across the room and caught David as his eyes rolled back into his head and his knees buckled. “Got you.”
Amy and Rory ran in from their respective doors and hugged each other briefly before turning to the two other men. “That was brilliant!” Amy clapped before noticing that David was barely conscious. The two immediately gathered around him to help the Doctor support him. “David, what’s wrong? Are you okay?”
“He’s gone. He’s gone,” he breathed. Pushing them away, David stumbled towards the TARDIS.