The Lost Girl

People get lost in time sometimes, but there's no one quite as lost as Amanda Grey. She's spent an eternity jumping from place to place, much like the Doctor does, but she can't control it, can't stop it. She's alone in the universe, but she has hope. There are stories scattered through time about the Doctor. Fair warning - female Doctor. If you don't like don't read.

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5. My Ponds

Chapter 5 - My Ponds

The Doctor stood quite still for a moment, her sonic hanging limply between her slender fingers, dripping wet. Evidently, she was somewhere in her own mind, which tended to err on the vast and terrible side, and knowing her the slightest reference to another part of her long life would no doubt drag her right into it.

She tried to ignore the ache in her hearts from seeing Rose again. They’d been so happy, back then, so blissfully unaware of what was to come.

“Who was that?” the Doctor jumped, and turned, wide eyed. There he was, wreathed in the flow of a flickering light, still very much intact.

“You’re alive!” she breathed, running to him. He raised his arms in defeat and wheezed as she slammed into his chest, almost unbalancing him.

“No need to sound so surprised”, he said, then sobered, “Exactly how much trouble are we in?”

The Doctor pointed her sonic at him and he sighed theatrically, “What are you doing?”

“Checking for injuries, temporal irregularities, funny smells…” She examined the reading and beamed at him.

“So what’s the verdict?” he asked.

“No injuries, a wardrobe full of temporal irregularities. All quite normal”, she replied happily.

“I could have told you that myself; I mean the smell”.

She glared at the sonic, “It told me I was being stupid, which seems highly unlikely to me”.

“Well, now that you mention it”, Alex began, but the Doctor hugged him again before he could finish. He hadn’t really planned to finish it anyway. Though he hated to admit it, the Doctor was the cleverest person he’d ever met and the silliest of course, but they go hand in hand, or else things become tediously boring.

He looked over her should, to where the girl had stood, with that thin man he vaguely recognised. She had been very pretty, “Who was that?” Alex repeated.

The Doctor’s hands fell down by her sides, and she looked at him sadly, “Her name was Rose”, she said.

“Was?”

“Oh, she’s still alive”, the Doctor said, “But it’s been a long time since I saw her last. Things happened and she ended up in a parallel universe. I thought I’d never see her again”.

“But you did?”

“Oh yes! We saved the world, again”, and she suddenly sobered, her thoughts drawn to the old family. The one she’d had before, but they’d all faded away, over time. She’d said goodbye, left them to the lives they’d managed to salvage once she was through with them. She looked at Alex, and found herself asking once again if she could justify plucking these people out of their worlds and into hers.

Alex nodded, “So that was you, as a man”.

“As a male”, she corrected, “But yes”.

Alex gestured to his head, “The hair”.

The Doctor waved her hand dismissively, “That’s nothing. You should have seen the chin last time”.

They both laughed, and the Doctor began tapping on the nearest wall, running her sonic along its length, scowling at the results. Alex watched her in silence for a while, but there were a thousand questions stemming from what she’d just told him. The Doctor was not so much secretive as reluctant to talk about her past, and he’d travelled with her for long enough to know why. The universe isn’t a safe place.

“Did you love her?” he found himself asking, and she froze, her thin shoulders hunched. He saw her jaw moving furiously and she nodded slowly.

She set about her activities with renewed vigour, uttering a stream of intelligible comments under her breath. Alex wandered around the room, examining the consoles. He was just tapping one of the red lights experimentally (one learned to press buttons when travelling with the Doctor) when something occurred to him.

He stopped dead and stared fearfully at the metal beneath his feel, “If I was just looking at you and you didn’t immediately charge up and create a paradox, then that must mean…” Alex looked at the Doctor, but she ignored him. “Oh God”, he said, “Please don’t tell me that I’m inside your head!”

The Doctor smiled woodenly at him, “Umm, not sure”, she held out a hand, “Now come along-”

Reality flew out from beneath their feet, and for several seconds they spiralled through darkness punctuated my brief images of room and planets and people he’d never seen before. Then they both fell onto a soft pile of discarded wiring, or what Alex could only assume, by their texture, were wires. It wasn’t as dark, and there was a comforting humming beneath the sounds of the Doctor shifting beside him.

He groaned, but the disgruntled noise caught in his throat as voices floated through the gloom. “Doctor”, someone said in a Scottish accent, “Do we have to trample around in the dark? I’ve been nice to the Tardis all morning. Aren’t there lights down here?”

“Yes”, someone replied impatiently, “But I asked her to turn them off”.

“Why?” the Scottish girl asked.

“It’s supposed to be a surprise”, the second person said crossly.

The Doctor was very still beside him, as though frozen, and Alex could only assume that this was yet another of her memories, with yet another person she’d rather not encounter again. He knew she didn’t like to repeat things, because all the things she started seemed to end in tears, and that was hard. There are some days you never want to live again, and some memories better left untouched. But a moment later Alex heard her muttering, “This was their wedding night. She was conceived today. That’s still weird”.

“Who is that?” Alex hissed.

Somehow, he felt the Doctor smiling, “That’s Amy Pond, and her Rory”.

At that moment another person spoke, “That’s very mysterious, but as I’ve already tripped over three things, I think you should probably turn the lights back on – OUCH! Four! Four things!”

“And a lizard”, the other person, who Alex assumed to be the Doctor, chirped happily.

“Oh, stop whining!” Amy said crossly, but a moment later Alex heard a sound that sounded suspiciously like snogging.

“That is SO embarrassing”, the other Doctor complained, “We’re almost there”, he added a moment later.

“Come on, Rory”, Amy said.

Gradually, they moved out of ear-shot, and the Doctor sat in silence.

“So”, Alex said, “Who were they?”

The Doctor lay back on the pile and entwined her fingers across her stomach, “The Ponds. My Ponds”. Alex was about to inelegantly ask what had happened to them when they heard a groaning, distant, as though it were coming from deep in the depths of the Tardis.

Leaping to her feet, the Doctor’s sonic shone green in the darkness, “Everything’s fine here”, she said, scratching her head, “The Tardis is stable, do you feel like we’re tilting? No, that’s not it. Not tilting. It’s like it’s making some tremendous effort”.

“Right”, Alex said, trying to sound serious and completely on the same wavelength, “So that must mean…” He trailed off, “Yeah, so basically… I have no clue”.

Suddenly, the Doctor whacked herself sharply on the head with the sonic, “Of course. We’re in my head”. She set off in a random direction and Alex tried to follow, but he caught his foot in the wires and ended up on his face. The Doctor continued to talk, oblivious, “Aha! Yes, we’re in my head, and nothing’s wrong here, so I must be hearing that”.

The groaning exacerbated, and there was a humming too, and that whooshing sound the Tardis made because the Doctor was rubbish at brakes. The lights flickered on, and Alex tried to regain his composure, but the Doctor wasn’t looking at him. She was staring at the ceiling, which from Alex’s vantage point didn’t seem terribly interesting.

But the Doctor had that wide, delighted smile she always wore when talking to the Tardis, unless it was having a tantrum, “Oh you clever girl”, she said reverently. She looked down at Alex, grinning manically, “She’s waking up!”

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