The Stuff of Legends

Rose seems just fine with the new new Doctor, but how will Lilithanadir cope with traveling with a man wearing the face of her father? A rewrite of series 2 of Doctor Who

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14. Parallel Worlds... Part Two

Lilith tried, and nearly failed, to hold in her laughter as Rose and the Doctor entered the room in their serving outfits. Having been wearing something suitably formal, Lilith had been welcomed as a guest whereas the other two were ushered towards the staff entrance.

“We could’ve been anyone,” Rose said through gritted teeth as the Time Lady approached. “Celebrities. Sir Doctor and Dame Rose.”

“It got you in, didn’t it?” Lilith said with a mocking smile. “Besides, if you want to know what’s going on, work in the kitchens.”

“That’s what the Doctor said,” pouted Rose.

“Excuse me! Thank you very much. Thank you if I could just have your attention, please?” came Pete Tyler’s voice from the other room. The Doctor fell into step beside them as Rose and Lilith walked into the main hall where Pete was standing on the staircase. Um, I'd just like to say thank you to you all, for coming on this, this very special occasion. My wife's thirty-ninth.” He gave one of his Vitex thumbs-ups. “Trust me on this. And so, without any further ado, here she is, the birthday girl, my lovely wife, Jackie Tyler.”

Jackie made her entrance in a skintight black dress. Everyone applauded. “Now, I'm not giving a speech. That's what my parties are famous for. No work, no politics, just a few good mates and plenty of black market whisky. Pardon me, Mister President. So, yeah, get on with it. Enjoy, enjoy.”

“You can't stay. Even if there was some way of telling them,” the Doctor said quietly to Rose.

“Course I can't,” she said quickly. “I've still got Mum at home, my real mum. I couldn't just leave her, could I. It's just; they've got each other. Mum's got no one.”

“She's got you. Those two haven't,” Lilith told her comfortingly. “All these different worlds, not one of them gets it right.”

“Rose! There's my little girl!” Jackie cooed as a little terrier came running over to her. “Come to mummy, come to mummy! Yes, good girl! Good girl, aren't you?”

The Doctor laughed, but sobered at Rose and Lilith’s dirty looks. “Sorry.”

Party guests kept milling around as Rose went off to continue her job serving. Lilith and the Doctor snuck off to investigate. In what Lilith assumed was Pete’s office, they found a computer. The Doctor played a video.

Lilith didn’t listen to it; she remembered what came next in the story. The advisary they were up against that time. “Doctor…” she said slowly, watching the horror dawn on his face. He darted out of the room and Lilith followed on his heels.

Rose!’ he broadcasted. ‘Rose, where are you?

They found her looking out a window at the approaching mass of creatures. “It’s happening again,” he breathed.

“You’ve seen them before?” Rose asked. Both Lilith and the Doctor nodded. “What are they?"

“Cybermen,” Lilith spat.

CRASH! One of the Cybermen smashed through a window; others came in through different points in the house. The guests were surrounded in the main room.

“What are they, robots?” Rose asked quietly.

“Worse than that,” the Doctor growled.

“They used to be people,” Lilith said.

“People?”

“They were, until they had all their humanity taken away,” the Doctor explained. “That's a living brain jammed inside a cybernetic body, with a heart of steel. All emotions removed.”

“Why no emotions?”

“Because it hurts.”

We have been upgraded,” one of the Cybermen said.

“Into what?” the Doctor asked.

The next level of mankind. We are Human point two. Every citizen will receive a free upgrade. You will become like us.”

“I'm sorry. I'm so sorry for what's been done to you,” the President of Britain said. “But listen to me. This experiment ends tonight.”

Upgrading is compulsory.

“And if I refuse?”

“Don't,” the Doctor warned.

“What if I refuse?”

“I'm telling you, don't.”

“What happens if I refuse?”

Then you are not compatible,” the Cyberman said.

“What happens then?”

You will be deleted.” The Cyberman put its hand on the President's neck, and electrocuted him.

The Doctor grabbed Rose and ran, Lilith right behind them. She could hear the guests scream as they were killed. “There’s nothing we can do!”

“My mum’s in there!” Rose protested.

“She’s not your mother! Now come on!” the Doctor shouted.

A row of Cybermen stopped them from running across the lawn. They turn back and run around the side of the house as Pete came out through the window.

“Pete!” Rose yelled. “Pete!”

Pete followed the Doctor, Lilith, and Rose. “Pete, is there a way out?” the Doctor asked.

“The side gates. Who are you? How do you know so much?”

“You wouldn't believe it in a million years.”

More Cybermen cut them off. Two armed figures came running across the lawn in front of the floodlights. “Who's that?”

“Get behind me!” one of them yelled. They opened fire on the Cybermen, but the bullets just bounced off. The Cybermen stopped.

“Oh my God, look at you.” Rose hugged one of them, Mickey. Though Lilith somehow knew it was Rickey, the parallel one. “I thought I'd never see you again!”

“Yeah, no offence, sweetheart, but who the hell are you?” Rickey asked.

“Rose!” The actual Mickey came running over. “That's not me. That's like the other one.”

“Oh, as if things weren't bad enough,” the Doctor said frustrated. “There's two Mickey's.”

“It's Ricky,” said the one on Rose’s right.

“Micks and Ricks.” Lilith made a face. “No, that doesn’t sound right.”

“Don’t ever call me Ricks,” Rickey warned her.

“Can we focus?” Mickey demanded. “There’s more of them.”

“We're surrounded.”

“Put the guns down. Bullets won't stop them,” the Doctor said. Jake started shooting. The Doctor stopped him. “No! Stop shooting, now. We surrender! Hands up. There's no need to damage us. We're good stock. We volunteer for the upgrade program. Take us to be processed.”

You are rogue elements,” one Cyberman said.

“But we surrender.”

You are incompatible.

“But this is a surrender!” the Doctor protested.

You will be deleted,” the Cyberman intoned.

“But we're surrendering! Listen to me; we surrender!”

You are inferior. Man will be reborn as Cyberman, but you will perish under maximum deletion.” The Cybermen held out their deadly arms towards the group. “Delete. Delete. Delete.

Mentally, Lilith swore in Gallifreyan.

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