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Country Time Lord

Fic: The Broken Link (1/?)

Fic: The Broken Link (1/?)

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Domestic? Never!
Title: The Broken Link
Author: country_who
Characters/Pairings: 10.5/Rose, The Doctor (11), OC's, The TARDIS
Genre: H/C, Romance
Rating: PG
Word Count (this chapter): ~3200
Summary: How long was the Doctor really gone when he returned for Amy? Because, Rule one is "the Doctor lies?" The Human Doctor has been living a happy life in the parallel world with Rose for nine years and their two kids. But, something the the Time Lord Doctor does back in his universe is threatening to end all that. How are Rose and the human Doctor going to cope? 
Summary (this chapter): The Doctor (10.5) returns home from another long day at Torchwood to his ever growing family. Everything is going well (if you leave off Torchwood making him stay a bit longer than he likes). But, what happens when he's hit with headaches? And, what does Eleven have to do with it? 



The Doctor walked up the brick steps to his home. The sun was already setting behind his back as he slid his key into the lock and pushed the door open. He ran his hand over his face in a frustrated motion; while, he walked through the door and dropped his keys on the table beside the door. That had been the second field mission this week, and he felt like he was drowning in the paper work that came along with being a team leader.

Part of him wondered if it was worth it. Surely, he could have gotten a job with a university or any other organization with his knowledge and accolades. There was something still drawing him in though. A feeling that he needed to prove himself to Rose still persisted after nine years of marriage. It wasn’t that Rose ever doubted him, but his single heart was born filled with uncertainty. Donna had imprinted it on him, and the Time Lord Doctor hadn’t helped in telling him he needed fixing.

As he moved up the ranks, he found himself buried more and more by clutter. He began to feel like it wasn’t the aliens weren’t the biggest threat he had to face in a day, but bleeding to death from the number of paper cuts he was prone to receiving.

He looked up to see his daughter studiously reading her notebook on the couch, and his son setting up battle fields between his action figures and a few of his sister’s dolls.

His son was the first to notice that he had walked in and got to his feet and ran over to him, wrapping his arms around his leg and holding him tight. The Doctor ruffled his son’s thick brown hair fondly and picked him up into his arms. After coming home too late for dinner and bedtime for yesterday and the day before, it felt good to hold him again.

“Hello, Jack,” the Doctor greeted. “Did you have fun today?”

Jack nodded excitedly and smiled widely at his dad. “I ran lots in the yard, Mummy wouldn’t play though.”

Jack frowned and stuck his bottom lip out in a pout.

“Well, I’m sure Mummy just wasn’t feeling up to running,” the Doctor told his son, shifting him a bit in his grip. “She’s gotta think about your little brother or sister.”

Frowning, Jack peered at his father through thick rimmed glasses. “Does that mean that he doesn’t like running?”

“He might be a girl,” said the Doctor’s daughter, while she came up, closing her book and holding it close to her chest. The Doctor tried to get a glimpse of the cover, but she was covering it carefully. “And, Mummy can’t run with the baby because, our little brother or sister could get hurt, right Daddy?”

Smiling, the Doctor nodded and let Jack down on the floor. “That’s right, Ava,” he replied, squeezing her shoulder and trying to get a peak at her book, but she pulled away.

“You aren’t s’posed to read it yet,” Ava protested, to her father’s stunned expression.

“You could at least tell me what it is,” the Doctor pouted.

“It’s no good,” Jack told his father. “The only one who gets to read it is Mummy.”

Sticking out his lower lip in a mock pout, the Doctor crossed his arms and leaned against the wall.

“So, my Ava isn’t my little girl anymore?” the Doctor asked, pretending to be heartbroken as he collapsed on the couch and clutched at his chest, groaning. He squeezed his eyes shut and made noises that sounded like he swallowed a working vacuum cleaner.

Ava shook her dad’s shoulders from where he lay, but the Doctor only groaned louder and grunted out.

“No, can’t…go…on…” he gasped. “Too...much…pain…”

“You’re faking,” Ava said a-matter-of-factly, while she crossed her arms, still holding her book and staring at him.

The Doctor chuckled and got to his feet, while Jack pushed him back on the couch. He pulled a thermometer out of seemingly nowhere and shoved it in the Doctor’s mouth before he could grunt his protests. He spit out the plastic stick and handed it back to his son, as he got to his feet after the first second of shock.

“What are you doing?”

“You sick,” Jack said. “I make you better.”

“Thank you, Jack,” the Doctor said melodramatically, as he sat back down on the couch and pulled Jack up on his knee. “I’m all better.”

“Good,” Jack said, hugging him and glancing at Ava going back to her book, every now and then she scribbled in something with a black ink pen with a furry red topper. The Doctor smiled to himself before letting Jack scamper down to the floor and getting to his feet again.

“Daddy?”

The Doctor looked up to where Ava was sitting when he heard her voice. He smiled and was about to say something like ‘So, you decided to show me what you’re doing after all,’ but the seriousness in her eyes stopped him.

“Hmm?”

“Never mind,” Ava said quickly, as she looked away from him and back at her book, as if she was angry with it.

“What is it, Ava?” the Doctor encouraged.

“Nothing,” Ava said, while she hung her head a bit lower.

“Tell me, sweetheart,” the Doctor encouraged, kneeling down to her level and looking her in the eyes.

“Are you…are you,” Ava hesitated in the words she was gonna say before shaking her head and starting over. “There was this girl at school on Friday, and she said that the reason you worked real late was because you didn’t wanna be home. That’s not true, right?”

Sadness leached its way across the Doctor’s face as he held his looked lovingly at his daughter. “Of course not, Ava. I don’t care what other people say, but I want to be here. Why else would I come back?”

Ava shrugged her shoulders and stared at her feet. Her long brown hair fell over her eyes covered her high cheek bones and chocolate eyes.

“Who told you that I didn’t want to be home?” the Doctor asked almost fiercely.

“Just a girl in class, I don’t even know her that well,” Ava admitted honestly. “I couldn’t tell you her name if I tried.”

The Doctor nodded satisfied, but all at once he regretted listening to the teachers at the school and allowing Ava to advance three whole levels up the system. Maybe it was too much of a stretch for her. She was doing so well academically in her studies that the
Doctor and Rose hadn’t even really thought about how well she would acclimatize to her new classmates.

“Ava, do all the kids bully you like this one girl?” the Doctor asked, while fearing the worst.

Hastily, Ava shook her head. “Not at all, most of them really like me, but they are really tall, Daddy, like up to your belt,” Ava said, as she stood up and leaned against his leg, her head clearing his knee by a few inches. “They asked me to help them with long division.”

Ava sniffed haughtily in a way the Doctor knew he learned him. Part of him knew that he should probably reprimand her for being rude, but a bigger part told him not to.

“That’s good,” he said instead, as he watched Rose finally appear from inside the kitchen.

The Doctor stood a little straighter at the sight of his wife. She was wearing a light blue dress with a darker swirling design. It hugged her prominent baby bump comfortably as she walked towards the Doctor and he met her half-way.

“Hello,” the Doctor whispered in her ear and waited for her mimicked reply. The single word said back and forth between the two of them meant so much from so little. It was like their secret code, right up there with ‘pink and yellow,’ and ‘the stuff of legends.’

“Sorry I’m late again,” the Doctor apologized. “And, that I didn’t come in the kitchen straight away, but these beings I’d like to call children are very…” the Doctor looked at Jack and Ava before murmuring in his wife’s ear with a stage whisper. “Distracting.”

“I’m not distracting,” Jack said with a grunt. “And, I’m not a child. I’m three.”

Staring pointedly at Jack, Rose raised an eyebrow and knelt down. “Well, if you’re all grown up then you can go to work, right?”

Jack nodded his head back and forth vigorously.

“And, move out?” the Doctor added, linking his arm around Rose’s waist and pulled her closer to him.

Jack’s nodding suddenly stopped.

“I don’t wanna move out,” Jack whined.

“Oh, no,” Rose said shaking her head. “Mummies and Daddies only let children stay in their house…except for some…but we won’t have it in our house. Besides, Ava might want her own room.”

Ava giggled from where she was, but stayed seated as she scribbled more. The Doctor noticed this and ruffled her hair as he bent his knees slightly.

“Mummy,” Jack asked, looking a bit dejected.

“Yes?” Rose asked, stifling her laughter and putting on a serious mask.

“Can I be a child again?” Jack asked, while he wiped his nose on his sleeve and hugged Rose.

“Are you sure?” Rose asked with a raised eyebrow. “Because, I’m pretty sure paying taxes might really interest you.”

Jack shook his head and clung to Rose tighter.

“Okay, come on, you two,” Rose said straightening out and running her hand down the small of her back, “dinner.”

Rose opened the swinging door leading in the kitchen and let Ava and Jack slide past her. The Doctor circled his arms around her while she stood in the doorway, running his hand in circles on her lower back. Rose made a noise of pleasure and leaned her head against the Doctor’s chest briefly, letting the steady rhythm of his heartbeat soothe her nerves.

“One more month,” the Doctor murmured in her ear. “One more month and we can meet this little one.”

Rose nodded against his chest as he pressed a kiss into the top of her head and pulled back. He wrapped an arm around her waist and pulled out a chair at the kitchen table before taking the bowl of spaghetti and distributing it between everyone. After he was done, he pulled out his own seat and sat down in it heavily, as Ava and Jack’s heads went down simultaneously and began to eat.

“So, Ava,” the Doctor said looking up from his plate and glancing at her. “What d’you do today? I already heard from Jack.”

Ava grinned at Rose who giggled and went back to her own plate.

“Mummy helped me with my book,” Ava said mischievously.

The Doctor was about to fake another episode of ‘heartbreak,’ but Rose grabbed his arm before he could try. “No dying at the table,” Rose said. “I’m not carrying you over to the couch.”

Ignoring her father’s rebuttal, Ava began to twirl her noodles around her fork with concentration. She only looked up when Jack suddenly spoke and the caught her attention.

“Did you see aliens today?” Jack asked, looking up at the Doctor expectantly.

“Not at the table, Jack,” the Doctor cut him off, giving him a stern look before glancing at Rose.

It had become an accepted principle to not discuss the Doctor’s missions at the dinner table. Anywhere else was fine, but Rose and the Doctor were both adamant that dining was the one event that should be separate from Rose’s previous and the Doctor’s continuing work life.

“But,” Jack tried again.

“No, Jack,” the Doctor said more sharply to cut him off.
Looking down at his plate, Jack gave a muttered ‘yes sir,’ before Rose switched the subject.

“Jack, did you finish this weekend’s homework?” Rose asked.

“Not yet,” Jack told her, looking up at Rose and giving her a winning smile, which he begrudgingly knew she was immune to thanks to the Doctor.

“How come?” the Doctor asked, putting his fork down and leaning his elbows forward on the table.

“I didn’t get it,” Jack said shamefully, he had been struggling lately, and he wasn’t used to it.

“Did you ask the teacher?” the Doctor asked.

“No.”

“Ava?”

“No.”

“Mummy?”

“No.”

The Doctor took a deep breath and tried not to get frustrated. “Do you want me to help?”

Jack nodded eagerly, before smiling his thanks and explaining the lesson he was having trouble with.

***

Back in the Alpha Universe, the Time Lord Doctor stumbled into his TARDIS. Pain was bursting from every inch of his body now.

The Ood song still ringing in his ears as he threw his coat on the coral strut with a strained grunt. The brief thought hit him that he would probably never wear Janis Joplin’s coat again.

He closed his eyes briefly, the regeneration energy coursing through his veins.

“I don’t wanna go,” he cried as golden energy consumed him. His whole brain felt like it was on fire as he screamed. His features morphed and altered as the change completed itself.

***

The Doctor had taken a matter of minutes to explain the grammar lesson to his son. Soon, Jack was writing and editing the sentences he had been assigned quickly and without fault.

The Doctor sat on the end of the battered leather couch, with Rose next to him. Her legs bent underneath herself as she leaned onto his shoulder and closed her eyes. Ava and Jack, once he was done with his homework, came up to them as well. Ava curled up on the Doctor’s lap and Jack sat next to Rose, stretching out and resting his head on her leg.

“Can you tell us what happened now, Daddy?” Jack asked sleepily.

The Doctor nodded and almost subconsciously reached for Rose’s hand. She grasped his tightly and placed it lightly against her baby-bump.

Breathing out, the Doctor went on to explain an alien running amuck in down-town London and how he had to get the whole thing settled out with most of his team distracted with another disturbance. He left off most of the details, preferring to just give a basic
overview and explaining that he would have been home sooner, if it hadn’t been for the mountain of forms that had been dropped on his desk within minutes of returning to base.

He was just finishing his explanation when he felt a sudden pain enter his head. It wasn’t excruciating, but it was getting there. Removing his glasses, the Doctor rubbed his eyes and got up from the couch. He glanced at the clock; it was close enough to 8:15 for him to proclaim bedtime.

“Okay, you two,” the Doctor said, motioning up the steps. “Brush your teeth and get into your jimjams. I’ll be up in a minute to tuck you in, alright?”

Jack followed Ava up the steps. When they reached the top of the steps; they glanced back at their father, who smiled up at them reassuringly.

***

Rose met her husband outside of their children’s room after he tucked in Ava and Jack after a hurried story. She led him across the hall without a word and into their room. She sat him down on the edge of the bed and kissed him chastely on the lips.

“What’s wrong?” Rose asked,

He shrugged as he began to unbutton his work shirt and reveal a tight-fitted dark blue t-shirt. He picked it up and chucked it in the hamper as he got to his feet and began to pick out some pajamas for himself and a nightgown for Rose. He brought it over to her, as he turned away from her and began to change while she did.

“I know you too well for you to get away with that,” Rose told him. “You just sent your children, who have your sleeping habits to bed at 7:45. What’s going on? Rough day?”

The Doctor shrugged again, as he turned to face her as he buttoned up the front of his shirt. “No more than usual,” he replied. “It’s just a headache, that’s all.”

Rose nodded and sat against the headboard while the Doctor scooted in next to her.

“I’ll be fine in the morning,” he assured her, and he really hoped he would. The pain in his head had migrated from his head to down his spine now.

“You better be,” Rose joked, pulling the Doctor closer to her. “I can’t have you getting sick for tomorrow.”

The Doctor grunted, as drowsiness washed over him. “What happens tomorrow?”

“You’re taking me to the doctor at Torchwood remember?” Rose prompted, pushing on him playfully.

“Oh, right,” the Doctor drew out the words. “Sorry, I’ve sort of lost track of time lately.”

“I know,” Rose muttered her understanding. “You’ve been working too hard.”

Slowly, Rose drifted off to sleep, and the Doctor was quick to follow despite the pain increasing in his head and down his back.

***

The New, New, New, New, New, New, New, New, New, New Doctor stepped into his TARDIS after leaving Amy. Hopefully, he would return in a bit more of a timely manner this time. Now that the threat of dealing with Prisoner Zero was over, the Doctor could throw more attention into his ship. He skimmed his finger over the console nostalgically, remembering the last time the TARDIS had to change.

It was right after the Time War. The TARDIS—like himself—had been injured badly in the closing of the Time Lock. It was never easy on the old girl, and she would spend weeks of being queasy and sick.

“There we are now, Old Girl,” the Doctor cooed, still getting used to his new voice. “What do say to a quick stay in the vortex, while we both get some well deserved rest, eh?”

The TARDIS rumbled her agreement, as the Doctor began to circle around her. She ran fairly smoothly until she shook suddenly, knocking the new Doctor down on the new glass floor.

“What was that for?” the Doctor asked. “Did I say something? You know I can’t control what comes out of my mouth half the time after I regenerated. I’m still learning, like a child. Lucky me, I probably imprinted off of Amy Pond’s demeanor…” the Doctor made a slight shuddering noise before continuing. “That’s not to say that’s a bad thing it’s just, can you imagine a nine hundred something year-old man imprinting off of a young girl?”

The TARDIS projected a picture of a certain young blonde into the Doctor’s head.

“Well now,” the Doctor started. “That’s just not fair.”

The TARDIS persisted, showing him a picture of the Doctor’s human clone into his mind as well.

“What?” the Doctor felt like shouting at the TARDIS.

The TARDIS passed a few dozen Gallifrean symbols in front of him using the console monitor.

“But, that’s not possible,” the Doctor muttered and the TARDIS showed him an image of himself. “What d’you mean it’s all my fault?”

The TARDIS was silent in her explanation.


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