[text message to Jack Harkness's phone]

What is your favorite color?
After this.

This was more than needed. Several days of sun, warm sand, exotic meals, and time with Jack that didn't involve feeling like they were being emotionally pulled through a meat grinder. It was so good, he didn't want it to stop.

Which was why, he figured, it would.

"Breakfast," he said, hopping back into the hut in the early morning. "With nights this short, do they still call it 'breakfast'? Should they call it 'it's morning again' or something like that?"
When discussing having Sherlock Holmes from Sherlock meet the Doctor:

[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: I think Ten will really appreciate Holmes' love of running.
[livejournal.com profile] apropergenius: spy wants them to argue over who has the swooshier coat ;)
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: It's totally Ten.
[livejournal.com profile] apropergenius: I don't think so!
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: Ten's coat SWISHES. It is also ten billion times more protective
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: It is made of couch fabric. You know how you hid behind the couch to avoid Daleks? You can't now. The Doctor has killed it and is wearing its skin.
[livejournal.com profile] apropergenius: hahha well Sherlock's has a cinched back panel thingy which is just so faux-military! And red thread on the button holes!
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: COUCH
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: SKIN
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger:
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: SWISH
[livejournal.com profile] apropergenius: well, he had help in that shot!
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: IT IS ALL NATURAL
[livejournal.com profile] rude_not_ginger: LIKE HOW HIS HAIR IS NATURALLY STICKY-UPPY
[livejournal.com profile] apropergenius: oh god, we need to make this a thread

Let the battle of Swish begin.
follows this.

The Doctor woke only a few short hours later and found himself positively disappointed at his lack of dreams. He'd spent years asleep without dreams, and now, when he really wanted them, he still had nothing. No memories, no twisting nightmares, not even a good brain-dump of nonsensical mental garbage. Just nothing. He was asleep next to Jack on the bed, and then he was awake.

He sighed. His memory was still swiss-cheesed with missing parts of the last two hundred years, but there seemed to be more gaps filled in. And that was something, wasn't it? It meant maybe a few more nights of dreamless sleep and he'd be back to himself completely.

He just hoped there weren't more memories like Mars to discover.

He looked over to Jack, asleep next to him. This was what Jack loved the most, he said. Not sleeping alone. Not being alone. In that instant, the Doctor understood it.
To: jack.harkness@torchwood.gov.uk
From: jsmith1963@unit.gov.uk
Subject: Rutens

Green and blobby. Not much change on this side of London.

Has anything happened at the Sontaran base? It still strikes me as too much of a coincidence that there are two secret bases at the same time in very nearly the same location.

Follows this.

During their time apart, the Doctor didn't dream. Dreaming wasn't common for Time Lords in general, but while Jack was away or in his extended coma, there was no accidental glimpse into the human part of the Doctor's psyche.

Now, he dreamed. Twisting storms and violent rainclouds and a ship that was coming apart. Somewhere he heard Martha calling for him, telling him they had to turn back. They had to turn back, there was too much damage in this section of water. The sentence itself didn't make sense, but to his dream-self it explained a lot of things that were wrong.

A spitfire shot above them through the storm, heading deeper in. The Doctor never dreamed of spitfires. He knew them, but not well enough to have such a beautifully detailed image in front of him. In the dream, he saw it as a sign.

We have to find him, the Doctor responded. He's in the storm.

But everyone was here, on the ship. Mickey, Martha, Donna, Rose, Wilf, they were all there. And the Doctor was steering them into danger and---

He blinked. He was awake in Jack's arms. How long had he been asleep? A few short hours, he imagined. How many more hours did Jack need?
Follows this.

It's time to say goodbye.

Jack Harkness is dead. )

Muse: The Doctor (Ten)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 1,171
Based on RP with [livejournal.com profile] quitehomoerotic
Prompt: What makes you cry?
It was the way of things. He traveled with someone. He traveled alone. He traveled with someone. He traveled alone. This, the eve of his 1,600th birthday (though, if prodded, it was definitely his 914th birthday), was one of those times where he was alone.

He landed on the bar at Milliways. It had been at least 100 years since he'd been here last, but it was about 600 before that. Time being what it was, of course. Jack didn't own this place yet, and that disappointed him, just a little bit. It would've been nice to see him, just once. Maybe, eventually, he'd figure out a way to break that prophecy and see him again. Maybe---

Well, there was no use in dealing with maybes, was there?

The bar was having a black tie special, so the Doctor vanished back into the TARDIS and reappeared in his tuxedo, which was just a little worse for wear after his last adventure in it. Still, it looked good, and he looked quite good, if he did say so himself. Even with the slight twinge of white in his sideburns and the small, puckered scars that dotted his cheek and forehead. He was getting used to aging in this body and watching himself change.

He headed off to the bar and ordered a bright pink drink with a peppermint stick in it. Very nearly midnight. After this, he'd get something birthday-cake-flavored.
The Master gives the Doctor visiting rights once a day.

There's so much pretense to the visiting rights. What a great honor it is that the Doctor gets them, how much the Master is put out by them, and how they'll be taken away the moment anyone does anything wrong. The Joneses probably believe the rules and the nonsense the Master spews at them, but the Doctor doesn't.

They are, of course, just part of the game. Everything is part of the game.

There's the part where the Master slides around the rooms on the Valiant, showing off just how much of the board he owns. There's the part where the other pieces are knocked around, showing just how little mobility they have left. There's the part where the dominated squares are put on full, horrifying display. And then there are the visiting rights.

It's Tuesday. It's Jack's day to visit the Doctor. He's sat with him in the room every Tuesday since the Master took over, his eternally young hand on the Doctor's withered old one, massaging out the pains and soothing the liver spots. There are rarely words on Jack's visiting days, just two very old men sitting together in their defeat. The Master both loves and hates these days, the Doctor knows. He loves them because Jack's pain is almost palatable, thick and rich in the eternally sterile air of the Valiant. He hates them because they don't talk, and there's very little to mock in two men sitting silently in pain.

Today is going to be different. )

Muse: The Doctor (Ten)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 1,781
Follows this.

The Doctor did not often shop.

There were plenty of other interesting places to go, things to do, people to see. Like, the crosswords. He could easily do the crosswords and that would be miles more interesting than shop. Or flossing! Good for the teeth, very fun, better than shopping.

Still, right now, the Doctor was shopping. The fact was, if he correlated going out for lunch (A) to the number of disasters he and Jack had to face (B), he'd come to the conclusion that B was directly related to A, meaning that (B|A) could be drastically reduced if he instituted C, groceries.

So, (B|A)=(A-C), would mean that B would have a negative quantity of C. So the Doctor attached a Follow Me drone to carry as many groceries as he could afford.

"One credit for a Churro," the Doctor commented, biting on the sugary concoction. "I'm not sure if that's even how much it costs to make one."
After this.

There was something utterly nerve-wracking about not being seen. It made the Doctor feel like he was doing something wrong, like he was spying on the people around him. Even Jack, who was aware he was there, still couldn't see what the Doctor was up to. It should've felt freeing, and sometimes it did, but mostly it just felt wrong. Like he suddenly had no one to account for.

Which, considering his ability to touch anything had also vanished, wasn't too terrible, he supposed. He couldn't exactly do anything to be accounted for. Except watch and make the odd comment.

Also, not piloting the TARDIS was up there on the unpleasant scale. Not because Jack was a bad pilot (quite the contrary), but because it was just another sign of how utterly out of control he was now. No idea where his physical form was, no idea what that storm could be, and unable to even touch his ship.

As a whole, he'd had better days.

"Well, you couldn't get rid of me," he told Jack, teasingly. "Too much to do just yet."
Follows this.

When the Doctor woke, he was prepared to feel stiff and uncomfortable. Usually, when reaching that point of exhaustion, he usually found himself on the floor or on the console, in some sort of an awkward position that left him sore for the next day. This morning, however, he was out of his clothes and stretched out on his bed, under the covers with a heating blanket.

A breathing heating blanket.

He raised an eyebrow and looked to where Jack had an arm around him as he slept. The previous day came rushing back. Pearl Harbor, the goodbyes, the return of Gallifrey, being captured by the Shadow Proclamation, and finally nearly killing Jack. They came so very close. Too close.

Without really thinking about it, the Doctor found himself wrapping an arm around Jack's shoulder. Jack, who was ready and willing to die the previous day. And the Doctor was willing to give him that. He had been willing to give him that. Not anmymore.

Where could they go, now?

Onwards, of course. It was the only way they could go.

The TARDIS wasn't moving anymore, and the Doctor slowly extracted himself from Jack's embrace. He grabbed his trousers and shirt and threw them on quickly, heading towards the console, hopefully before Jack woke.

The summer air was heavy and sweet
You and I on a crowded street
There was music everywhere, I can see us there
In a happy little foreign town
Where the stars hung upside down
A half a world away, far far away
I remember you were laughing
We were so in love, we were so in love

And the band played song's that we'd never heard
But we danced anyway

"Oh, come on, Doctor, you have to admit this is great," Rose says. She tucks herself next to him, pressing her hand against the tight leather coat covering his crossed arms.

"I didn't say it wasn't good, I just think that parties celebrating the death of another species aren't ones I want to go to."

They'd landed on Yettico Prime earlier that day. The air was thick with perfumed flowers and a heavy atmosphere. It might've even been too heavy to stay, but Jack, being himself, managed to find a brilliant party on the other end of the mountain (right after Rose, being herself, managed to stumble into a number of dangerous men that they had to run from). And now, standing on this illuminated rock face as the twin suns set, it really was lovely.

Not that the Doctor would admit it. It was something one of the men had said, about how the party tonight was a celebration of the destruction of Gallifrey and the end of the Tyrrany. The Tyrrany of the Time Lords, not that Jack and Rose realized that.

"You could at least try to have fun," Rose pleaded.

"Nah, forget about him, Rose, let's dance." Jack reaches out a hand for her, giving her one of his widest grins. He shot a quick look to the Doctor, and then pointedly nodded before taking Rose out onto the part of the dance floor that had been cleared away.

Jack is cleverer than he lets on, it's one of the reasons the Doctor likes him so much, despite everything. Maybe he saw how that man's words affected the Doctor. Jack nods again, looking to the Doctor, and then to something behind him. Or, maybe he just noticed something the Doctor needs to take care of.

Following where Jack had nodded, the Doctor turns around. Standing off in the corner is a woman he hadn't noticed before. Petite, with long, blonde hair. She has her eyes fixed to him, though she stays just on the edge of the party. It's impossible. She can't be standing there, looking at him the way she is.

Before he realizes it, his feet have taken him towards her, until he's only a few feet away.

"Romana," he breathes. "That's impossible, you can't---"

"There isn't any time," she says. "Just listen to me, please."

"You can't be alive," he insists. He's grieved for so long over this, it's impossible, she can't---

"I'm not," she agrees. "This is all just a folded moment of time. Because I have to warn you, Doctor."

"Warn me?" he asks, shaking his head. "Warn me about what? Romana, you're alive!"

She sighs in a way that is utterly familiar to him. So put upon, so frustrated by his inability to listen. He thinks he might remain stubborn, just to watch her make that face again. Just to revel in the familiarity of it.

"You don't believe in prophecies," she says. "But someone will make a prophecy about knocking. Not now, not in this life, but soon. You have to listen to that. The fate of everyone depends on that."

"No one believes in prophecies except the High Council," he says, remaining stubborn for as long as he can.

She doesn't grant him with another one of those irritated expressions, she just looks sad. "Live," she says. "For me, would you?"

He drops the stubborn act and moves right into desperate. She's here, now, she can't go. Not yet.

"Romana, don't---"

"And stop feeling sorry for yourself." She snorts in irritation, and then, like a crease shaken out of a shirt, she vanishes.

He's not sure how long he stands there, staring at the place in front of him where Romana stood. Long enough, because before he's entirely sure what happened, Jack's hand is on his shoulder. He's shooed a curious Rose off to find them something to drink.

"Who was she?" he asks.

No answer is really sufficient. The Doctor takes in a breath and does as Romana asked; he pushes away his self-pity. He doesn't understand what she meant, and he doesn't know what prophecy she's talking about, but one day he will. And today, he'll live. Like she asked.

"A friend," he says. "Just a friend."

Muse: The Doctor (Nine)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 719
Follows this.

The warm air of the Pacific hit the Doctor as he pulled open the door to the TARDIS. A beach, as promised. It was about time he managed that. He'd always been so preoccupied with this disaster or that disaster, he'd often forgotten the little things in life, like watching the sun set over an ocean.

"Hawaii, as promised," he said, grinning to his companion. "The island of Maui, to be precise. Should be April 5, 1973. And not a bad landing, either."

He nodded back to the TARDIS, sitting comfortably in some soft, silty sand. It would be good for them, Jack and him, to stay somewhere touristy, he thought. To take away from the strange but very real fact that time had been altered, removing Jack and the Doctor from each other's timelines.

Jack must've meant a lot to the Doctor, considering how loudly his emotions rippled back to him.

"Had planned to land us in the morning," he said. "But! The nightlife in Maui can't be that bad, don't you think?"
Follows this.

The Doctor didn't really like doing things in halves.

So, he promised Jack a proper Christmas, so he plugged the keyword "Christmas" into the randomizer and set the TARDIS to land wherever she deemed would be appropriate. He thought they'd land somewhere on Earth, maybe a classic Victorian Christmas, or one of the neon-light Christmases of 4333. That would be nice.

As she flew, he opened up one of the compartments on the console and quietly tucked away the cufflinks Jack had given him. Sentimental, he'd said before. Sentimental, but they were a gift. For all the Doctor knew, with the Marquis chasing them they might be the last thing he ever got from Jack.

He hoped not.

Ding. The console fell quietly and the Doctor raced over to the monitor.

Not even Earth. Odd.

"Christmas Eve," he said, grinning despite it all. "12136 AD. Not a bad year for Christmases, I think."
Follows this.

Somewhere fixed and somewhere sunny. And, the Doctor decided, somewhere they could have a good time. So, scratching off a number of natural disasters and wars, he picked out a particularly famous and particularly fixed large concert in New York.

He even had a tie-dyed tie that clashed beautifully with his suit.

"It's a bit muddy," he said as he attached an 'Out of Order' sign to the TARDIS. "But I think we're just in time to listen to Santana. Janis should be up in a bit, I might be able to introduce you two." A beat. "If she's met me yet, I can never remember, what with that whole mix-up with time..."

Still! No reason not to have a good time. He tinted his glasses and slipped them on, grinning madly at Jack as he did so. At least three days of fun, without the worry of something terrible happening, just so long as they stayed within the concert.

When you came in the air went out.
And every shadow filled up with doubt.
I don't know who you think you are,
But before the night is through,
I wanna do bad things with you.

I'm the kind to sit up in his room.
Heart sick an' eyes filled up with blue.
I don't know what you've done to me,
But I know this much is true:
I wanna do bad things with you.

He could tell the moment the Doctor walked in the room. It was like the air left his lungs, left the area around him, left the whole bar. Everyone turned and stared at the tall, trenchoat-clad stranger stepping in from the spaceport.

"Was wondering when you'd show up," Jack said, downing another shot. He had a long line of them already empty in front of him, and a few dozen more to go before he died of alcohol poisoning (his preferred method of death since he arrived in this galaxy).

"Oh, I always show up, haven't you figured that already?" His voice was different, and Jack turned his head slightly to the side to watch as the Doctor dropped into the seat next to him.

He looked the same. Same messy hair, same shouldn't-be-as-attractive-as-it-is skinny body, same blue suit. But it was his eyes. They were something Jack always liked about the Doctor; his eyes. They were different now, definitely different. Wilder.

It was a sobering change.

"What do you want?" Jack demanded, reaching for another shot.

"You," the Doctor replied.

Jack downed the shot easily and leered drunkenly at him. "Well, why didn't you just say so? I've got a room upstairs. Died there a few times already, might as well die a little more, if you know---"

"Not like that," the Doctor said, though his look was more amused than anything else. Almost smugly amused. It wasn't something Jack remembered settling so naturally on the Doctor's face.

"Then how?" He reached for another shot, but the Doctor's hand was faster. He caught the small glass and pulled it away from him.

"You're depressed here," he said. "Feel like you've failed Earth. Your team. Your family. That boy---what was his name?"


"Steven, that's right. All of them." He knocked back the shot.

Even in his drunken haze, he knew this was not right. This wasn't how the Doctor acted. But he was right.

Jack swallowed. "Yeah."

The Doctor tilted his head to the side, a bemused and curious expression on his face. "Did you know the 456 were a fixed point in time?"

"Kinda figured that when you didn't show up," Jack said, his voice bitter. "Could've used your help." He was angry at the Doctor since it happened, though he hadn't wanted to admit it. He was angry because of the decisions he'd had to make. Angry because of the people he loved that had to die. He was too drunk to hide his anger, and he knew it.

The Doctor smiled at the anger, like it was a good sign. More than a good sign, a tool. "But I was there, Jack. And so were you."

"What?" He shook his head. "I was there, you---"

"Am one trip away from that place in the TARDIS." He nodded back to the door. "And you are, too. What do you think? Go back, change the universe? Save your friends?" His eyes almost glowed in the dim barlight. Bright and wild, full of confidence Jack wasn't sure he should have.

"That would be crossing over my own timestream," Jack said, shaking his head as if that could possibly clear the drunkenness. "You said that's dangerous. Really dangerous. Universe-ending dangerous."

"I changed my mind," the Doctor replied, and he sounded irritated by Jack's words.

"So suddenly it's not-so end of the universe?"

"Not if I don't want it to be," the Doctor said. "I can change it on my own, but it's up to you to save your friends. To save that Ianto Jones of yours."

At Ianto's name, Jack's head shot up. Save Ianto? He couldn't, could he? Maybe he---but what if---

"It's a paradox," Jack said. "I'd be going back to---"

"Already been taken care of." The Doctor said, slipping from his seat and heading for the door as if a decision had already been made. "I've invested in a paradox machine for these sort of problems."

Jack couldn't think of any paradox machine in the universe besides the TARDIS, but the Doctor wouldn't put the TARDIS on the line like that---would he? The Doctor Jack knew wouldn't insist that changing a timeline or even creating a paradox was a viable option.

But the Doctor Jack knew also abandoned him on Satellite Five. The Doctor Jack knew abandoned Earth during the invasion of the 456.

And he could save them. He could save all of them. All of the people he couldn't save before. He could stop the pain before it began. And the Doctor said it was possible. More than that, he was giving Jack a free ride there.

"Coming?" the Doctor called.

Jack picked up another shot, downed it, and then got to his feet. "Lead the way, Doctor."

His companion smiled. "I don't go by that name anymore."

Muse: The Doctor (Valeyard)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 809

All this feels strange and untrue
And I won't waste a minute without you
My bones ache, my skin feels cold
And I'm getting so tired and so old

The anger swells in my guts
And I won't feel these slices and cuts
I want so much to open your eyes
'Cause I need you to look into mine

Tell me that you'll open your eyes

Jack was born in 5070 century on the Boeshane Penninsula.

Jack will die in the year 5,000,000,056 in the city of New New New New New New New New New New New New York.

He doesn't die now.

There are timelines.

There are timelines and the Doctor will preserve them.

He holds the syringe of morphine unsteadily in his hand. He's not a doctor but he knows, in theory, that this should work. It should.

But then again, Jack shouldn't be dying right now. He should not be this close to death. He shouldn't be having a heart attack of all things. Of all things! It's too simple, too mortal. And Jack is immortal. This may not be how things should be, but it is how they are.

He takes a breath and presses the tip of the needle against Jack's chest. Into the heart. Just do it, Doctor. Quickly, don't stop. Save Jack's life.

He doesn't die now.

Time doesn't snap into place around Jack like it should. Time doesn't seem to move around him like he's wading in fluid. Jack is not who he should be and right now, right now Jack is dying. Open your eyes, Jack, he silently wills him. Open your eyes. Live. For me, Jack, please.

He doesn't die now.

The Doctor takes a breath and rams the needle through. It resists against flesh and muscle, but once it's about deep enough, he pushes the drug through. Morphine dialates the blood vessels and it should stop the heart attack. It should. It should work. It has to work. Jack doesn't die now. He can't die now. He can't die now because the Doctor saw him die in the future. He can't die now because the Doctor can't function in this half-memory state alone. He can't die now because---because---

Jack's eyes snap open and he takes in a deep, labored breath.

"You have to get back to the TARDIS," Jack says, his voice raspy and pained. Stupid bastard, caring more about the Doctor than himself. The Doctor could kiss him right now, but he has a feeling that's not a good idea while he's in his state.

He puts an arm around his shoulder. "Not without you." They've still got a long way to run, and the Doctor isn't about to leave him behind.

Jack doesn't die now.

Timelines aren't the only reason the Doctor is keeping it that way.

Muse: The Doctor (Ten)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 406
Based on RP with [livejournal.com profile] quitehomoerotic in this thread.
Follows this.

It was one thing, watching your companion be ripped apart.

One very terrible thing, mind you, but one thing. The Doctor stayed prone on the ground, the sound of Jack's death screams ringing in his ears as that thing, whatever it was, tore him into several unpleasant pieces. It reminded him of the Year That Wasn't, of Jack's screams while the Master tortured him and the Doctor's frail body keeping him from helping. That was torture, far more brutal than anything the Master's tools could produce.

Once the loud stomps of the creature faded away, the Doctor struggled to get to his feet and limped to the place where Jack had been.

It was another thing, having to find his body for it to regrow.

It took some time to find his upper torso, limp and lifeless. It didn't take too terribly long to drag said upper torso to a safe, empty cave not far from the forest's edge (after all, what Jack no longer had in height, he also lost in weight. It didn't take long for time to start snapping around him and his body to start to regrow.

That was something else all together. Muscle and bone formed out of nothing, and while Jack wasn't coherent, he was still alive, screaming and thrashing as he reformed. The Doctor pressed his fingertips to Jack's temple and tried to take away the pain, but when that failed, he pressed his mind into a quiet, comatose state.

While Jack repaired, the Doctor covered him with his coat and sat, waiting. For all that they'd fought, for all that the Doctor swore he'd never want Jack back on the TARDIS again, he did care about him. He wanted him happy, even if he wasn't certain he could handle having him so close. Jack was willing to die for the Doctor, and this was just another example of how he could.

But the Doctor wouldn't leave. Not this time.


rude_not_ginger: (Default)
The Doctor


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