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remember my prophetic chickens [userpic]

The Open Door PG 1593 words

10th June 2007 (21:42)
anxious

I'm feeling: anxious
I'm tapping my foot to: Feel The Silence

Title: The Open Door
Author: agapi42
For: catyuy
Rating: PG
Pairings: Ten/Rose
Characters: Martha, Rose, Tenth Doctor.
Summary: Her actions are measured and careful, like someone moving through a dream world.
Disclaimer: The BBC owns Doctor Who. I do not. This is probably a good thing.

Thanks go to eyliena for betaing and to lilypeters for help with the title.





“Is this Rose?” Martha asks, turning a page of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows to discover a photograph being used as a bookmark.

The Doctor briefly glances over at the photo that Martha holds up. “It is, yes.”

Rose Tyler is a petite bottle-blonde around the same age as Martha, perhaps a couple of years younger, with big eyes emphasised by her mascara, standing with her hand on her hip and laughing straight at the camera.

Rose’s clothes are typical for the early twenty-first century; a pink hoodie, blue jeans and trainers, which must have been good for running in.

She wouldn’t look twice if she passed Rose- superb, special, superior Rose- in the street.

Martha stares at the picture for a long while.


Martha wakes in her chair. The lights are dimmed in the night cycle, but moonlight spills through the open doors.

“Dårlig Ulv Stranden- Bad Wolf Bay,” the Doctor says quietly, his back to her as she appears in the doorway.

“This is where you said goodbye to Rose, isn’t it?” Martha’s not quite sure why she’s whispering. There’s something about the night sky, and the sand seeming almost silver in the moonlight, and the soft sound of the waves that forbids her to disrupt it.

“A year ago.”

Martha moves to stand beside him and he takes her hand. They stand in silence, their regular breathing somehow becoming as much part of the timeless rhythm as the waves and the stars.

Then the sky rips open and deposits a huddled form on the beach.


She gets up, dusts herself off slowly, deliberately, sees them and walks over slowly, deliberately, stopping about six feet away.

Her actions are measured and careful, like someone moving through a dream world.

Rose Tyler is a petite brunette around the same age as Martha, perhaps a couple of years older, with big eyes emphasised by how drawn her face is. She simply stands there- real, flawed, different- and looks at them.

It’s unusual to see the Doctor speechless.

“Take me back.” This Rose Tyler is used to having her commands obeyed, but there’s an echo of desperate hope; of the younger Rose Tyler who had absolute faith in the Doctor.

And the Doctor has to let her down again. “You know that I can’t. I’m sorry, Rose.”

She nods, just once, slowly.


“There you go. Superheated infusion of free radicals and tannin with added sucrose.”

The Doctor passes the mug of tea along to Rose, seated across the kitchen table from him.

“Sure you don’t want one?” Martha asks.

The Doctor shakes his head and Martha busies herself making herself a cup. It’s a familiar, soothing routine. The clinking of the spoon against the sides of the mug underlines the silence but focuses her mind.

Rose wraps her hands around the mug of tea and draws a deep breath. Her voice, when she answers, has only the faintest catch in it.

“I fell through the Void,” she says, staring into the mug as if into a crystal ball. “We were investigating a piece of alien technology and it…it just latched onto that scar between the worlds and ripped it wide open. I was trying to reach it and-”

She looks up, straight at the Doctor.

“I let go. I couldn’t cling on any longer.”

Martha rather thinks that they might not be talking about how Rose comes to be there any longer.


“Couldn’t sleep?” Martha yawns, stumbling into the kitchen to find Rose seated at the table with a mug of something.

Rose shakes her head. “The TARDIS is so loud. It’s just like my first couple of nights all over again. It took me a while to get used to sleeping without it, now I’ve got to learn all over again.”

“You get used to it quickly, don’t you?” Martha fetches a glass from the cupboard.

Rose doesn’t appear to hear her. She smiles, a sad, faraway smile as she looks back at something only she can see. “I make my choice, then it’s taken away from me. I start to make a life out of that, and suddenly I’m back where I started.”

Martha sits down next to her with her glass of water and Rose seems to shake herself.

“Anyway, I want to hear all about the time your mum slapped the Doctor.”

“Same here,” Martha grins.

They swap stories until the Doctor walks in.

“He didn’t!” Rose giggles.

“He did,” Martha assures her.

“Actually, I can believe that.”

“Why do my companions always gang up on me?” he whines.

They laugh even harder.


Rose soon starts to sleep soundly through the night.

Martha doesn’t.

Her body cries out for rest, but her mind simply won’t shut down, constantly bubbling with thoughts and ideas.

Sleep, when it eventually comes, is short and disturbed.

She dreams of her family, Rose and her family, the Doctor, and a beautiful planet with an orange sky and trees with silver leaves; dreams that she doesn’t always remember, but that leave her feeling itchy in her skin.

Martha takes to wandering the corridors instead.

One night, she finds a room with a window in it. A window in an impossible place, with an impossible view.

When she manages to find her way back, the door is locked with a large and very obvious padlock. She’s trespassed upon something.

Martha stops wandering the corridors and dreams of a beautiful planet with an orange sky, dreams of a beautiful planet with a blue sky boiling away into space.


It’s after they visit the centre of the universe that Martha begins to think about going home, at least for a while.

The centre of the universe turns out to be a hospital and she thinks there might be something in that.

The Doctor calls it Terminus and talks about finding an old friend whose name they don’t quite catch, before discovering they’re a century or two late.

The hospital is now called Tremas, and the Doctor’s friend is either dead or long gone.

There is no evil plot. No-one tries to arrest them. The TARDIS stays exactly where it materialised and they are not stopped from re-entering it in any way.

“So, ye of little faith, what did you think of that?” The Doctor grins his Tell-me-how-awesome-I-am grin.

“More sun next time,” Rose says.

“Sea and sand would be nice too,” Martha adds.

They both agree later, out of earshot of the Doctor, that it was restful, but they wouldn’t want to do it too often. Non-adventures are nice in their own way, but actually rather boring.

That night, Martha finds a medical textbook in the library.


It’s London, 2009, and they’ve stopped the aliens, but people are dead, people are hurt, and they need her.

“Do you want-” The Doctor coughs nervously. “Do you want to see us again?”

No-one mentions that the Doctor has a habit of not coming back to the people who wait for him. Martha never had any intention of waiting for him; this day was always going to come.

She smiles and nods. “If you’re passing this way.”

But she still says goodbye, and so do the Doctor and Rose.

Rose says that Sarah Jane might have taught him that.


So she helps clear up, she answers the questions, she qualifies as a doctor and carries on with her life.

There is another alien invasion, and she cares for the wounded, but she doesn’t see the Doctor or Rose.

They might not have been around at all; she’s hearing dark whispers of something called Torchwood. It gives her a chance to live in her life before deciding whether or not to leave it behind again.

It is three years before she sees them again. The doorbell rings as she’s cooking dinner and the Doctor gives her his best cheesy grin.

“Calling Doctor Jones.”

“Come in,” she sighs, wondering how many times she’s heard that line, but amused despite herself.


“You what?” It’s not the most elegant phrase she could have used, but it’s the first thing that came into her head.

“Well, it was either you or Harry and Rose knows you and Harry’s apparently vanished and he was only really qualified to work on sailors and he’s probably too much of a gentleman, so-”

“No, stop. I thought you were alien. I thought she was human. So how?”

“Well, theoretically, it should be possible, perhaps with the aid of-”

Martha interrupts the Doctor again. “Have either of you thought through the implications? It’s hardly a child-friendly lifestyle. And don’t try telling me that you-” she points a finger at the Doctor, “-are going to settle down for a while because I won’t believe it.”
She doesn’t voice the darker suspicions in her; her concerns over a child with no heritage.

They smile at her; the Doctor uses his best puppy-dog expression and Rose looks bright and hopeful and so, so achingly young next to the Doctor.

Martha sighs. “Well, congratulations.”

“Do you want any help packing?” the Doctor beams and freezes.

Rose walks up to Martha, slowly, deliberately, the measured actions of someone moving in a dream world, and lays a hand against her face.

“Take care of him,” she smiles.

Martha wakes in the TARDIS console room, with the photo clutched tightly in her hand.


Rose lets go of the alien device with a gasp. It falls to the floor unheeded.

“Lock it away and mark it unsafe.”

“What does it do?” Mickey asks.

Rose considers her answer. “It finishes things.”

Comments

Posted by: Cedara (cedara)
Posted at: 11th June 2007 08:25 (UTC)
*TARDIS-Tours*

Naughty, but well done.

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 11th June 2007 17:57 (UTC)

I'm not quite sure what you mean by that.

If you mean the ending, yes, I wasn't quite sure about that because it's a cliched get out.

Thanks for commenting :)

Posted by: Cedara (cedara)
Posted at: 11th June 2007 18:06 (UTC)
*delight*-(Ten+Martha)

Yeah, the babyfic is cliche-esque, but the way you turned it to your advantage was a good idea.

I first thought I was reading a Doomsday-fixit, but you didn't go that route, you made it a 'moving on' fanfic. That's what I meant with naughty. - And it's cool.

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 11th June 2007 20:11 (UTC)
ten martha half face

I don't think I will ever write a Doomsday-fixit, because I think that Rose is having a fantastic life in the alt!verse.

I had a go at Prompt 2, which was a Doomsday fixit, but I gave up about 400 words in. Prompt 3 would have been awesome, but I can't write Ace or Leela in any great detail. (The fic I wrote for fraternizing is about as far as I go.)

And um, I may have approached the prompt backwards.

Glad you like though. Wasn't sure about it.

Posted by: Paul Gadzikowski (scarfman)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 01:42 (UTC)

It's a new twist to me for two people to have the dream.

If when Rose falls out on the beach she means, "Take me back [to Pete's Word]," instead of, "Take me back [onto the TARDIS]," I read it wrong and clarification might be in order. But the characters are perfect and the double twist is a great payoff.

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 17:18 (UTC)

If when Rose falls out on the beach she means, "Take me back [to Pete's Word]," instead of, "Take me back [onto the TARDIS]," I read it wrong and clarification might be in order.
*rereads* Oh yes. I can see how that could be misunderstood. I'm not very good at seeing how other people might think, and my beta seems to know how my brain works because she didn't flag it up.
Thanks for pointing that out.

But the characters are perfect and the double twist is a great payoff.
Thank you very much! I'm always slightly worried about my characterisations.

Posted by: eyliena (eyliena)
Posted at: 12th June 2007 02:42 (UTC)

hehe. i love it tons. :)
i really love the title, too. good on lilypeters.
you rock. woo!

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 12th June 2007 21:49 (UTC)

Glad you like. *attempts to keep balance*

I asked Lily for suggestions and she suggested "Moonlight Through The Open Doors", so I said "How about The Open Door, or maybe Closing The Door?" and Lily said she preferred "The Open Door" so I went with that.

Posted by: everyone loves a wee sombrero (bibliotech)
Posted at: 12th June 2007 23:05 (UTC)

Oh, the ending! Ouch, ouch, ouch. I love this.

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 12th June 2007 23:09 (UTC)
Ten

*offers plasters and cookies*

Thank you for commenting. I'm glad you like it :)

Posted by: . (lovesafable)
Posted at: 12th June 2007 23:41 (UTC)

I kinda love you for this. I NEVER thought I'd she a fic where... omgzzzz!11!1 Rose and Martha are nice to each other.

What a good story! I liked the somewhat surprise ending haha.

Posted by: . (lovesafable)
Posted at: 12th June 2007 23:42 (UTC)

that is... see instead of she.

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 06:54 (UTC)

I NEVER thought I'd she a fic where... omgzzzz!11!1 Rose and Martha are nice to each other.

That was the entire point of the Martha and Rose ficathon. You can find the master list at http://bytheseaside.livejournal.com/34398.html

Thanks for commenting. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Posted by: Warning: Proximity to me causes adventures. (karnythia)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 00:55 (UTC)

Very nice

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 17:19 (UTC)

Thanks

Posted by: The girl you've been waiting for (pescivendolo)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 03:02 (UTC)
(dw) martha the brave

Ooh, I like that a lot. Especially after I realized that when Rose said "Take me back" she meant back home to Pete's world. That's so... realistic (as far as our little scifi show can be, anyways). Even if it was a dream. Of sorts. This is really well done. Love it!

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 17:26 (UTC)
ten martha half face

Especially after I realized that when Rose said "Take me back" she meant back home to Pete's world.
Yes, scarfman *points above* has said that that might need clarification.
I was trying to contrast Doomsday!Rose, screaming "Take me back" and wanting to go back to the Doctor, to an older Rose who has moved on but ends up with the Doctor again and just wants to go back to her life.

This is really well done. Love it!
Thank you! *big happy grin*

Posted by: Worrals (livii)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 06:34 (UTC)
call me doctor jones

I really like the "finishes thing" concept, and that what Rose wants in Pete's World is to stay there, and live her life. :)

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 13th June 2007 17:36 (UTC)
ten martha half face

I absolutely hate the idea of Rose just being depressed and wasting away and dying without the Doctor.
I think she's much stronger than that. *mutterings about independent existence*

And I really believe if, a while after Doomsday, Rose had to make the same choice again, she'd choose her family and her life over the Doctor.

Thank you :D

Posted by: ©ĦЯ¡$ (cpemslie)
Posted at: 18th June 2007 12:27 (UTC)

I'm confused.

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 18th June 2007 19:50 (UTC)

About anything in particular?

Posted by: a princess of now (skywardprodigal)
Posted at: 21st June 2007 01:52 (UTC)

I love the different variations of maturity you have running through the same Rose.

It's lovely.

Posted by: remember my prophetic chickens (agapi42)
Posted at: 21st June 2007 01:58 (UTC)

Thank you very much. I think post-Doomsday Rose is a very interesting character.

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