I would just like to say that none of the characters in this story are my creation. They are the intellectual property of the BBC and all credit goes to them, the writers, the actors and the production staff of the television show Doctor Who.
Check out some more of my fan-fiction at https://www.fanfiction.net/~the26thdoctor
“I don’t recall putting these in the basket.” George said as he and Martha walked down the road. It was slow going as always and not just because they were carrying a child with them. The ice on the sidewalk underneath the drift of snow meant every step was a game of chess with George’s arch nemesis- balance.
“Oh yeah, Balinda said these beets go well to add flavor to your Darjeeling.” Martha smiled back at him. She too was having issues with foot placement, something that amused Quentin to no end. He was absolutely an adorable child. Laying there in the carrier, his blue eyes lit up the dreariness of the town around him and Martha was thankful for that. Not only did it provide her with ample opportunity to stop as the townspeople cooed and played with him, but there was a sense of hope in them that neither she nor George had felt in a long time.
“I like my Darjeeling just the way it is though.” George whined. “And besides I don’t think I like beets.”
“Well you’ll have to get used to them, see. They’re good for you too you know.” Martha said as her feet slipped a little.
“No, dear, they’re good for them. I don’t think they’re good for us.” George said as he caught her.
“Thank you, dear. Well in any case I like them and I don’t like your Darjeeling. Heaven knows that’s the only tea you’ll buy so if I’m going to have it I might as well try to enjoy it!” Martha said, kissing George on the nose.
“Yes, dear. But you don’t like beets either, though.” George said affectionately to her.
Martha dodged her eyes around trying to think a way out of this. “Well then…maybe two things I don’t like put together will make something I do like.” She smiled.
George smiled back at her. Martha always had a way of relaxing him. He really was not looking forward to having beets in his Darjeeling, but at least he could not enjoy it with her. It was a quirk of her personality that never ceased to amaze George. No matter what kind of trouble he was in or how bad things were, Martha was always happy to share in his misery, to make it a little more bearable. He looked at his son in the baby carriage. “Can he have them?”
“No, George. You’re not getting out of this.” She scolded him.
“Well, Quentin, pay attention. This is what you have to look forward to in married live.” He joked. Martha gave him a playful slug on the shoulder, which barely registered thanks to his thick parka and her mitted hands. “Oh no! I can’t take the abuse!” George kidded. “Quentin, boy, you saw that right? It’s an abusive relationship, I don’t know how I deal with it.”
Martha kept giving him playful slugs on the shoulder as he did this. She couldn’t take him sometimes, really. Sometimes he was just too adorable, too amazing. This was one of those times. She leaned up on her tip toes and met George’s lips in a quick peck. “I love you.”
“And I’d give the Universe for you, darling.” He gave back.
The two and a half of them walked for several blocks, and by walk what I mean to say is they plodded carefully through the snow covered cement. Every so often George would slip or begin a cartoonish procession of waving arms and feet, all of which drew the loving chuckles of his wife and son. Luckily the last 5 blocks back to their abode was sure-footed gravel and grass undergrowth, which would speed up their journey considerably.
Halfway between the cement and their house the two-and-a-half-some was making good time through the park when George saw someone. He was a tallish figure, a cut black shape against the blankness of the snow. He looked fierce and intense. He was trying to approach the family in a way that wouldn’t cause alarm, but there was something in his walk that made George stop.
“What are you stopping for love? We’re nearly there.” Martha said. George just pointed at the man and Martha could immediately sense what he was on about. Walking about two paces behind the man were two others. One was a slightly larger though less imposing man, very handsome and suave. The girl was short and pretty, with blonde hair and no overcoat. They must have just arrived. But no real mind was paid to those two. It was the fierce man in black leather that gave worry to George and Martha. And it wasn’t his figure or his face that scared them. It was his eyes.
He was definitely a child of Gallifrey.
George and Martha stiffened as the trio came closer. “Hello, I was wondering if I could have just small moment of your time, please.” The Time Lord said, trying to sound as friendly as possible.
“Um…Yes.” George said unsurely. “Can I ask what this is about?”
The Time Lord smiled at them and pulled a bi-fold wallet from inside his coat pocket, opened it up and showed it to them with some authority. “I’m just here on business from the tax services.” He smiled. The piece of paper he showed them was blank. Psychic paper. One of the tools of the Celestial Intervention Agency.
“Well…I…can assure you that we have paid all of our taxes in full and on time.” Martha stumbled out.
“Well as you can see from my badge here, I come from the special investigations department, immigration branch.” The Time Lord said.
“Oh, well we did file the proper tax forms to cover our immigration six months ago. We had a professional do that for us.” George covered.
“Oh did you. And where did you immigrate from?”
George had to tread carefully. He thought for a moment. He and Martha had affected Anglo-Irish accents to better account for telling people they were from Gallifrey, Ireland. But this Time Lord would see right past that. George could think of only one other place in Ireland at the moment. “Belfast. Belfast, Ireland.”
“Right and you had these tax papers done by a professional in town?” The Time Lord was pressing a little more than he would’ve like to let on.
“Yes.” Martha and George replied feebly.
The Time Lord smiled. “And I guess at this point I should ask where your spaceship is.” George and Martha looked at each other in defeat. “Your alibi’s are complete rubbish you know. It’s like you didn’t do any research at all. First off, this psychic paper” he said holding it up “was supposed to be showing you that I’m Lanky the Birthday party clown.”
At that point the handsome associate of the Doctor stepped forward. “And your accents are anachronistic. By this point in time all of Northern Ireland had assimilated a more Scottish brogue. And also Belfast was destroyed a hundred and fifty years ago by the Great Meteor Shower.”
The pretty girl spoke up. “And there’s no tax professionals in town. I looked at the business early. Just some bars and shops and stuff.” She was obviously the least trained out of all of them.
“So, I’m going to give you one more chance to tell me who you really are and them I’m going to get angry if you don’t.” The Time Lord said.
George and Martha sighed, looking at each other and at Quentin. George spoke up. “Look, if I can I’d like to make a plea against extradition given extraneous circumstances.”
The Time Lord looked contemplative. “I’ll take it into consideration. What’s your names?”
“I’m Bellaraphon.” George said. “This is my wife Kendallamornina.”
“And the child?”
“Quentin.” Martha replied, her voice almost breaking thinking of what might happen to them once they were transported back to Gallifrey. Back to the war.
“It’s a good name.” The Time Lord said. There was a subtle change in his tone, as if he actually approved of the name. This didn’t make sense for a CIA agent, as the preferred Gallifreyan children to have Gallifreyan names. They also would know how Quentin was born. “Where are you from?”
“Originally we’re both natives of Archerion, just outside of Arcadia.”George answered. “But…we…we are both graduates of the Time Lord academy.”
George started to notice a change in the Time Lords eyes. The intensity was giving way to more pronounced emotions- hate, fear, anger, sadness….all running together at once. “You’re lying. That’s impossible! What houses were you from?”
“Doctor, calm down.” The pretty girl chided.
“I will not calm down! They can’t be Time Lords: all Time Lords fought in the war. They were all killed in the war!” The Time Lord, apparently called the Doctor shouted. “You shouldn’t even be alive! What are you doin here?” He cried. “You can’t be here.”
George and Martha looked at the trio in realization. These three weren’t from the CIA. They weren’t out to get them or they would’ve been brandishing quantum net rifles and time grenades and such. No. No. This was a lost Time Lord.
“Does it really matter which house were from?” George answered.
“It does to me. More than you know.” The Doctor replied.
“I have a bit of a question, to change the subject if you don’t mind.” Martha chimed in. “You came looking for us. How is it you don’t know who we are?”
“Because to be who you claim to be is impossible.” The Doctor said fiercly as he started circling them. “You see, all the Time Lords were called back to Gallifrey once the War started. Oh yeah- you remember that don’t ya? The Last Great Time War? The Big One? And all Time Lords were accounted for!”
“Doctor, calm down.” The Handsome man tried to step in.
“Why? Why should I calm down? Everything I’ve known is being questioned right now.” The Doctor said getting in the handsome man’s face. “You don’t know, Jack, so don’t try.”
The Doctor glared at the man called Jack for a moment. Then he smiled. A naked smile, not born from joy but from realization. The Doctor spun around, his toothy grin a haunting phantasm in the cold air. “Alright, then. So you’re time Lords. Good for you. Like I said. All Time Lords were recalled to fight the Daleks. So if you’re here…that means you ran. That means you tucked tail and ran away while your brothers and sisters burned in the furnace. Could you hear the screams in your wakes?”
“Look, you don’t understand.” George started.
“Oh, of course not. There’s always some understanding to be had. You think you’re special? You think your above defending Gallifrey, defending the Universe?” The Doctor said, his feet planted firmly in the winter snow. His voice was a static monotone, the calm before the storm.
“No, something happened.” George stammered.
“Right.” The Doctor said with a raise to his voice. “Something did happen. You ran away. You packed up and left. Sayonara! See ya, suckers. Have fun defending the Universe from being torn apart!”
“No it’s not like that!”
“Then what is it!” The Doctor screamed.
“Doctor, you’re scaring me.” The pretty girl said sheepishly.
The Doctor spun around with a sternness that startled her. “Rose, this is nothing. I promise you, when you should be scared of me, it’s too late.”
The look in their faces told George quite a bit. The Doctor, apparently, was never this curt, never this crass. Jack and the pretty girl were seeing a side of The Doctor they hadn’t yet seen. George understood now that the Doctor was on his heels. This was his chance to gain some leverage on the situation.
“Doctor, I’d like for you to meet Quentin Quiz. He is the natural child of Martha and myself.” George said with weight in his voice.
In an exquisite moment, The Doctor’s entire demeanor changed. The wind whipping through the trees behind them played a haunting soundtrack, haunting as the fact that had just been revealed. Off in the distance the sound of summer tunes could be faintly heard from the bar. The moment had fallen so quietly Martha could have sworn to heard the leaves depressing the snow as the fell.
“You mean…natural.” The Doctor nearly gasped out.
“Completely natural. Like in the old days.” George confirmed.
“Now that’s impossible.” The Doctor said breathlessly.
Martha stepped forward, he trim figure a stark contrast to her curly red hair. From a distance it would look as a blood stain on the white snow. “Here’s something I can’t quite figure out. You came looking for us. How is it you didn’t know who we were? Why were you looking for us then?”
A tense moment passed as The Doctor stared at the young babe in the stroller. The Doctor wanted to love him and hate him at the same time. The relief he felt tasseled with the fear that it meant. Quentin, for his part, smiled as innocent as he was. He hands and feet, still uncoordinated to his body, flailed about wanting to play with the toys dangling overhead. His face was a mess of pureed food and mouth bubbles. It was the most dangerously adorable thing The Doctor had ever seen. “We didn’t know.”
Rose chimed in. “Yeah the, uh, the TARDIS just sort of…led us here. Like we were supposed to be coming here for something big. It does that from time to time.”
“All we read from the scanner was that there was a space-time anomaly present here. What exactly that means, Doctor, I have no idea.” Captain Jack finished.
“It means…” The Doctor trailed off as a single tear ran down his face. “It means that no matter what…even if the Universe burns for us doing so…we have to protect this baby.”