Fayth (faythbrady) wrote,
Fayth
faythbrady

The Darkness Within 9/11

The Darkness within PG13
Darkfic Doctor/Rose
Summary- Regeneration takes the pieces of you and turns them into something else. But what if a part of you didn't want to leave. What if your old self didn't agree with what you were doing? What if the animal within got out?
The Darkness Within Prologue (PG13)
The Darkness Within 1 (PG13)
The Darkness Within 2 (PG13)
The Darkness Within 3 (PG13)
The Darkness Within 4 (PG13)
The Darkness Within 5 (PG13)
The Darkness Within 6 (PG13) 
The Darkness Within 7 (PG 13)
The Darkness Within 8 (PG 13) 

Chapter 9

The Doctor stepped onto cold hard pavement and sighed, relishing the slight breeze around his face after the cloying heat of the Hub. He inhaled deeply and could smell the sweet scent of honeysuckle and lavender and the odd mixture of diesel oil and dust. 

It was a familiar scent to the body, if not the mind, and one that he had wished he could smell for so long now; it was the smell of Earth point 2, or Pete’s world. 

He stepped forward and almost tripped over something lying on the street. 

It was Owen who had found the landing a little bumpier than he was used to. 

The Doctor stared in amusement down at the man on the pavement who was glowering up at him. “Feel free to give me a hand, then.” 

The Doctor helped him up and even allowed him time to dust himself off. 

“So, where are we?” Owen asked glancing around, pretending that his little lapse with gravity hadn’t happened. 

“London, possibly,” the Doctor scratched the back of his neck. “Or it could be Manchester, hell, could be Bergen for all I know.” 

Owen rolled his eyes. “So glad I came with you. So what would help, then?” 

The Doctor folded his arms as he glanced up at the floating Zeppelins. “Road map would be quite handy, even a newspaper.” 

Owen followed his gaze. “Blimey, is it a blimp festival?” 

“Here they use Zeppelins rather than trains or caravans; makes the air fresher. The sky has become a playground for the rich.” 

Owen couldn’t take his eyes off the floating monstrosities. They were big and shiny and full of an other-worldliness that he hadn’t seen before. 

The people seemed to take them as a matter of course and ignored them as they went about their daily lives, but Owen’s senses were assaulted. Shops with names Owen didn’t recognise captured his attention, as did the people wearing outfits that were so contrary to his delicate twenty-first century sensibilities. 

It was Earth—but not. 

Owen stuffed his hands into his pockets and took a deep breath. 

“Right, so no use pussying around then. Let’s find out where we are.” 

In stalking off towards the bustling crowds Owen completely missed the somewhat impressed look the Doctor shot him. 

“Excuse me, love,” Owen walked up to the prettiest blonde and gave her a smile. “Uh, me and my friend here have just hitchhiked. Can you tell us where we’ve ended up?” 

The girl gave him a disinterested once over, chewing noisily and the peered over his shoulder to see his ‘friend’. A blush settled on her attractive features and she smiled at the Doctor. 

“Leicester City Centre. Shires shopping cen’re’s tha’ way, The Haymarket’s over there. ’S a Holiday Inn ‘bout twen’y minutes tha’ way if ya wanna stay in this dump.” 

“No thanks,” the Doctor said with a smile ignoring the fact that the letter “t” had been all but removed from her vocabulary. “We need to get to London.” 

“Hmm, ‘kay,” the girl popped her gum and turned around. “Down high street, keep going when ya get t’crossing. Straight over junction, yeah? Then past Hope shoes, Brackleys Bank, the Euro shops and the Post office. The P Z station’s on the left.” 

“PZ?” Owen frowned. 

The girl rolled her eyes. “Public Zeppelin. Like, where have you been?” 

“Parallel world.” 

“Should fink so wiv them shoes,” she shot back and wandered off. 

“Delightful girl,” Owen hissed. “Reminds me of my first girlfriend.” 

“No wonder you’re single.” The two shared a very masculine look of amusement before heading off in the direction they had been pointed towards.

>

Owen had tried his best not to be awed by the Doctor. His ego wasn’t exactly fragile, but having someone new come in and pretty much take over—even from Jack—was slightly disconcerting to the male part of him that liked to be in charge and in control at all times. 

He disliked having Toshiko look to someone else with wide, adoring eyes; he disliked Jack blatantly ignoring his sarcasm, and anything that made tea-boy Ianto happy was sure to spell doom for Owen. 

That said, having a box that could travel in space and time was far ahead of a Ferrari in cool points, and being able to travel to a different dimension was better than frequent flier miles. A sonic screwdriver which could alleviate cash from cash points with a single buzz was better than any Gold Card, and Owen found himself impressed despite himself. 

“I so want one of those!” he gushed as the Doctor tucked the sonic screwdriver out of sight. 

“Maybe when you’re older,” was the Doctor’s reply as he paid for the two of them to travel via Jet Zeppelin to London. 

Travelling by Zeppelin, Owen decided, was a little like being in a lift that went sideways; a little bumpy, with the feeling that gravity wasn’t completely on your side, nor would be very friendly when it stopped. 

He spent the two hours that it took to get to London staring at his feet and trying not to wonder what Chicken Chow mein would look like second time around. 

The Doctor was studying the inner workings of the Zeppelin with glee and alternated between chatting to the driver and contemplating all the things that could go wrong with such a machine. 

“Imagine a breach,” he said enthusiastically, “a small puncture in the outer hull and all the air would get sucked out decompressing the shell until it created a vacuum, we’d either suffocate or be squashed, isn’t that fantastic?” 

Owen paled. “Yeah, great.” 

“Or maybe if we got the altitude we’d just get frozen air sucked in. We’d be frozen within seconds and the cold would jam up the works causing the Zeppelin to crash and burn. You humans,” he said affectionately. “Always finding more ingenious ways to kill yourselves.” 

Owen had his head between his legs and was working on an ingenious way to kill the Doctor when the host spoke the most beautiful three words he had ever heard. 

“Next stop: London.” 

“Thank God!” he breathed. 

“Actually,” the Doctor said as he pressed the button to open the doors, “I think his name was Clive.”

>

Somehow alternate London was far more to Owen’s taste than Leicester had been. Even in his own version of London, it was almost expected for people to be wearing outlandish outfits and to drive like maniacs. Earth 2.0 seemed to be exactly the same. He even recognised one or two of the names of stores, or at least their purpose. 

He rubbed his hands together. “Right, so how do we find this bird of yours then?” 

The Doctor grinned manically. “One of three ways. One, if Rose still has the TARDIS key on her, I can trace her with my sonic screwdriver. Two, I can go straight to Torchwood at Canary Wharf and try to see if she works there.” 

Owen waited a beat. “Or three?” 

“I can call her,” the Doctor pulled out a mobile phone from his pocket. 

Owen folded his arms. “Hello, darling, it’s the Doctor. I’ve come to take you back to a parallel world with me, oh what’s that? You got married? Three kids. A ha. April fools!” Owen sighed. “There’s this thing called surveillance, yeah? Or even subtlety.” 

The Doctor had frozen with his fingers on the dial, his face a picture of shock. “Married?” His voice trembled slightly as the thought hit him with all the force of a freight train. 

“How long since you’ve seen this girl anyway?” 

“It took five months to find a supernova and a rip to say goodbye, then we got caught up in the Donna mess. Must be about eight months at least. For me, time moves differently here.” 

“We?” 

“What?” 

Owen sniffed. “You said we. ‘We’ got caught up in the Donna mess. Who’s ‘we’.” 

The Doctor stared at his mobile phone for a long moment and then pinned Owen with an annoyed look. “Me and my alter ego, okay? Can we focus, please?” 

“Jeez!” Owen held up his hands in mock surrender. “All right. So how about we head to Torchwood then?” 

“Fine.” The Doctor gestured for Owen to lead the way. 

Thankfully the layout of old London town was the same as on their Earth so they didn’t get too lost or, as the Doctor said as they walked past Tesco twice ‘Temporally displaced.’ 

Canary Wharf was slightly more dilapidated here than on their version of Earth and Owen folded his arms across his chest and sniffed disparagingly at the shattered windows and crumbling brickwork of a clearly uninhabited building. 

“Just a thought, mate. If they re-established this highly secret agency, right, would they put it in the very public place of the last flipping empire? Not exactly covert is it?” 

But the Doctor wasn’t listening. 

His attention was caught by a playground just across the road. A group of screaming children were bouncing about on the various bars and brackets that were there for their enjoyment. Their youthful enthusiasm for mud pies and games was evident in their volume—but it wasn’t that which had caught his attention. 

The Doctor raced across the road, causing several London drivers to demonstrate their accurate grasp of language if not of biological abilities. But he was oblivious as he careened towards the railings that encircled the child’s play area. 

Kneeling down by the bottom of the slide was a form so familiar that he knew it by heart. 

A form he had taken the hand of and tugged out of danger and into his life. A form he had held while she cried over her dead father. A form he had watched and longed for and laughed with and needed. 

A form he loved. 

Delicately streaked blonde hair hung around her face in a messy pony-tail to trail over her black jacket. A heart-shaped face stared up at the top of the slide, smiling sweetly at someone at the top of the apparatus. With an encouraging nod she waited for the person to slide down, bursting into that smile as the child crashed into her arms. 

Rose Tyler, older, softer and more beautiful, swept the child into a crushing hug and giggled loudly. 

His hearts thrummed loudly in his chest as he watched the unbridled delight in her expression and all he wanted to do was sweep into the park and grab her and never let go. 

But there were children or at least one—was it hers? 

The child should be theirs-his and Rose’s. Was Ewan the useless right? He couldn’t be— Rose wouldn’t…Was Rose happily married with children? Without him? Would she resent him just walking back into her life assuming that she had waited for him? Had she waited for him, like he had for her? 

He had told her that she could stay with him forever but he had also said that seeing him again was an impossibility—has she taken that literally? 

A flash of anger buried itself in his belly. He’d waited for her. He’d stuck around inside the head of a vain, manically optimistic pretty boy for her. 

He’d watched and waited and ached for her. 

Had she moved on? He’d waited

A sharp crack made him look down to the cracked case of the mobile phone in his hands. He took a deep breath. 

No. Not his Rose. 

“Are you so sure?” His little passenger spoke up, his voice just as quiet and pain-filled. “We told her to have a fantastic life, maybe she’s doing that. We should let her go.” 

But he couldn’t just let her go, not after seeing her so close. He wanted her, yearned for her and had done the impossible. He deserved her, damn it! 

“She looks happy.” 

“Shut up.” 

“You can’t intrude on that.” 

“Shut up.” 

How can you justify—?” 

“I said shut UP!” The voice fell silent, probably feeling the swell of emotions within. 

He was torn; torn between his desire to have her by his side no matter the cost and his deeply ingrained sense of non-intervention, instilled from childhood. 

He wanted her but at what price? Her happiness. He could feel his hearts hardening even as he stood there. 

Before he could decide whether to approach her or to just walk away and let her live her life without him, he realised that he was being watched. 

A small girl with red hair in pigtails was staring at him with wide eyes. He offered her a small grin and she raced over to one of the women sitting on the bench, watching the children. 

“Stranger!” the girl called and pointed towards him. 

He gulped as the woman sprung to her feet, her hand reaching into her belt for a tazer gun, her stony eyes proclaiming him a pervert. With her other hand she grabbed a cord at her throat and pulled out a whistle, giving it a sharp blast. 

All activity on the playground halted at the shrill sound and every single child shot over to the bench, staring up wide-eyed at the woman. 

The silence in the once busy playground was deafening and all visions of escape fled his mind as he wondered exactly what he’d walked into… and where the hell was Owen? 

“Commander!” the woman yelled and Rose hastened over, a child still clinging to her. 

Rose looked down at the tazer and then followed it up to where the woman had it trained. 

Right at the Doctor. 

She blinked and let the child slide down her body, almost in slow motion. 

The Doctor couldn’t take his eyes off Rose who was staring at him like she was seeing a ghost. 

He lifted up his hand and gave her a slight wave, feeling like an idiot, but having to do something to break the stalemate. 

Rose stepped towards him carefully almost as if the slower she walked the easier it would all be, and then shook her head, starting to walk normally. 

He held his breath until she made it to the railings, his hands reaching to the waist-high metal bars to steady himself. 

She hadn’t changed—oh her make-up was more subtle, her eyes were sadder and her hair was longer—but in essentials she was still there, still his Rose. 

“Hello,” he said softly, unable to stay silent in her presence. 

“Impossible?” she whispered. 

“Ish,” he shrugged. “Impossible-ish. Sort of.” 

A sob burst from her throat, erupting into a burbled laugh that was as much pleasure as anguish. Her hand clasped to her mouth. 

“Doctor?” 

He grinned. “Hello.” 

Ignoring the railings, Rose leaned over to throw her arms around him. 

From her heartbeat against his chest, her soft hair against his face and her scent surrounding him, it was like coming home. 

Oh Rassilon—this was what was meant be. But she was still too far away. He pulled back and glared at the railings. 

Rose sniffed. “The gate’s—” 

“Sod the gate!” he said and vaulted the railings. He had her in his arms again before his feet hit the floor and this time it was a proper embrace. 

Body to body, hips to thighs, legs entwined and arms entangled, he had her back and he wasn’t letting go. 

Not ever. He didn’t care if she had family here, he didn’t care if she were married or engaged or a bigamist. Rose was his, she had always been his. 

A fierce wave of possession swamped him as he held her closer. 

Mine. I’ve got you. I’ve got you and I don’t ever have to let go. Neverletyougo. All mine. 

With a small breath he swept her into a tighter hug and swung her around, swirling her in a circle that had her giggling and kicking her legs. 

He buried his face into the crook of her neck and inhaled, long and hard. 

It had been years for him, for this mind, for this memory and it had been too damn long. Watching as she hugged his body, as she embraced him and all the time wishing he had taken more advantage of her affectionate nature and now he had the second chance. 

“Rose,” he whispered, his words a longing plea. “My Rose.” 

Mine, all mine, I’ll never let you go, not ever. 

“My Doctor.” Rose pulled back slightly to look into his eyes. “If this is a flying visit, I swear to all that is green and slimy, I’ll kill you.” 

He laughed out loud. “I think you promised me forever, Miss Tyler.” 

Forever. 

Rose nodded quickly. “And don’t think you’re wriggling out of it, either.” 

“Never!” He leaned forward and kissed her forehead. 

He wanted so desperately to make it her lips, to devour her mouth and make her his own in truth as well as words, but not with an audience of small people. 

The pig-tailed red head had wandered over and was glaring up at him. 

“Miss Tyler, are you s’posed to snog strangers?” 

Rose broke away and stared down at the small girl. 

“No, Amy. This is an old friend of mine, I haven’t seen in years and we weren’t snogging.” 

“Hello!” He waved down at the girl. “I’m the Doctor.” 

“I don’t kiss my doctor,” Amy said decisively. “He’s old.” 

“Well, good,” Rose said as she stepped back, smoothing down her clothes in slight embarrassment. “How about you tell Mrs Harris we’re ready to go. Okay Amy?” 

Amy shrugged and walked away. 

“Cute kid,” the Doctor offered offhandedly. 

“Precocious as hell,” Rose muttered and glanced around the play ground. “They all are.” 

“Ahh.” He nodded and reached down to grab her hand, not wanting to let her go. Rose glanced down at their entwined fingers and grinned before following the hand up to the jacket with her eyebrow raised. As it registered she did a double-take, a variety of expressions covering her face from shock to hurt before settling on uneasy pleasure. 

“What’s with the new look?” 

He glanced down and remembered that she had last seen this body in pinstripes and not in his old leather battered jacket. 

“I chose this outfit when I lost my home.” He looked up into her eyes. “Seemed appropriate to wear it again when I lost you.” 

Rose couldn’t speak for a second and then offered quietly: “That include the accent?” 

His mind raced as he both marvelled at her observation and cursed it. This wasn’t the way he wanted to tell her what he’d done and Rose wasn’t easily dissuaded. But what could he say that wouldn’t have her trying to find a way to save his tenth self? 

Having had experience with Rose and her emotions he decided to play on the one card he held—sentimentality. 

He raised a hand to her cheek, brushing it gently. “I’ll tell you later, let me just enjoy this, my Rose.” 

It worked and her eyes filled as she reached for him again, planting a kiss on his cheek. “I missed you so much.” 

“Not as much as I did you,” he said with some certainty, cherishing the kiss. 

“Well we can compare later,” she teased. 

“That a promise?” He waggled his eyebrows. “You, Rose Tyler, were always all talk. Anyway, have to buy me a drink first.” 

A shout behind him made him miss the confused look on Rose’s face as he turned to see Owen sauntering casually over the road. 

“Oi, thanks for leaving me standing there talking to myself. I didn’t even notice you’d gone until some woman asked me if I was okay. Felt like a right Muppet.” Owen groused. 

“Well, you are,” the Doctor replied scathingly. “Ewan the useless meet Rose Tyler.” 

Rose smiled at the man with a permanent sneer on his face. 

“Hello, we’ve been looking for you.” He sniffed and looked over her shoulder. “I thought you said she worked for Torchwood, not some child herder? What’s with the rug rats?” 

Rose barked a laugh at the comment. “I’m a Field Commander for Torchwood, but it’s a…like a Bank Holiday here in commemoration of the Battle of Canary Wharf. These are War Orphans under care of Torchwood.” 

“Oh,” Owen shrugged. “Nice. Community care.” 

“Gotta promote the image.” 

“And you do it well,” Owen eyed her lithe form. 

It wasn’t his to look at. 

The Doctor’s blood began to boil. Owen was just some lackey of Jack’s that had no right to look at Rose like that. He didn’t have the right to undress her with his eyes. He didn’t have the right to even look at her. He was nothing. 

Nothing. 

Kill him. One snap to the neck, it’d all be over so very fast. One less ‘pretty boy’ to get in the way. No competition, no Owen. Kill him. One tiny little snap. 

Fire burned in his eyes and he felt his fingers clench. 

The Doctor pushed Rose a little behind him, shielding her with his body and glared at Owen. “Ewan, why don’t you show the little kiddies how not to cross the road. Blindfolded.” 

The threat was apparent in his voice and in his eyes and Owen stepped back, hands held up in surrender. 

“Right.” 

When the Doctor glanced back at Rose’s shocked face he almost cursed at his lack of self control; if he kept on like this then she was sure to realise that something was wrong. 

“Doctor?” 

He pointed a finger at Owen jokingly. “Been winding me up for hours, he has, almost as bad as Mickey.” 

Rose grabbed his hand in both of hers and the Doctor turned his attention back to her, allowing his hidden anger to fade. 

“I can’t believe you’re actually here,” she muttered, something so familiar dancing in her expression. 

His hand drifted up to her face, caressing those satiny soft cheeks that he hadn’t seen in so long. “You had to know I’d come for you, Rose.” 

She nodded mutely, an obvious lump in her throat. “You burned a sun to say goodbye.” 

“I believe that was me,” said the passenger within his mind who had remained uncharacteristically silent at his reunion with Rose. “I burned the sun.” 

Him, always him—always the pretty boy. No, he wasn’t going to allow that this time. 

“I’d do more,” the Doctor spoke over him, passion in his voice. “I’d collapse universes for you.” 

Her eyes widened and her voice was tremulous, almost disbelieving as his previous threats and dire warnings of galactic calamity echoed in her mind. “You haven’t?” 

“If we don’t get back in eighteen hours, then yeah,” Owen interjected. 

Rose’s eyes refused to leave the Doctor’s, searching for something. “Eighteen hours?” 

“There’s someone on the other side waiting to pull us back.” 

“And…and, we can’t ever come back here?” Rose bit her lip as he shook his head. 

“No, Rose. This is a one way trip, too much stress could tear the universe apart and I’d like to avoid that.” 

“But there’s time to say goodbye, yeah. To Mickey and Mum and Dad and Shaun?” 

A stab of something akin to jealousy made the Doctor’s jaw tighten. “Shaun?” 

Rose’s smile blossomed. “My little brother. Told you mum was pregnant, she had a boy. Little Shaun, image of Pete, let me tell ya.” 

“We can say a quick goodbye, if you like,” he offered magnanimously. “But we do have to be quick.” 

Rose nodded, understanding the seriousness of their position. “I have to get the kids back to Torchwood and then get to mum’s. She’ll be thrilled to see you.” 

“Sure,” he scoffed and then had a flash of memory that wasn’t his. Jackie, wrapping her arms around him a hug, planting fervent kisses all over his face and grinning at him in glee. 

Jackie Tyler actually liked the next version of him. 

He grimaced. 

There was no accounting for taste. 

Tags: darknesswithin, doctorwho, fanfic
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