Author: Milady Dragon
Pairing(s): JackHarkness/Ianto Jones, Toshiko Sato/Kathy Swanson, Owen Harper/Diane Holmes, Tenth Doctor/Rose Tyler, Martha Jones/Tom Milligan, Phil Coulson/Clint Barton, Tony Stark/Pepper Potts
Warnings: Language, Violence, Angst, Temporary Character Death (It's Jack), Perceived Character Death, Minor Character Death.
Spoilers: Thru S2, E13, "Fragments" and "Exit Wounds", the audio play "Lost Souls" for Torchwood, S4, E12 and E13, "The Stolen Earth" and "Journey's End" for Doctor Who. Slight spoilers for the movie, "Iron Man"
Disclaimer: I don't own Torchwood, I would have treated it better. Don't own Doctor Who, Sarah Jane Adventures, or the Marvel Cinematic Universe, either
Author's Note: Here it is, the Dragon-Verse version of "Stolen Earth" and "Journey's End". There are a few things I need to say about this story, just because there might be some confusion about certain events.
First of all, the Doctor Who episode, "Turn Left", never happened in this universe, so Rose and Donna have never met. Secondly, this is the first time major events spill over into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, because the Daleks can't steal the planet without Nick Fury knowing about it. Thirdly, events from the Dragon-Verse stories during The Year of the Toclafane apply here, in that the Doctor is not happy with Jack and Ianto about executing the Master. If anything else comes up, I'll let you know.
Summary: The Earth has been stolen. There are twenty-six other planets in the sky. The Daleks are raining death down from the sky. It's the end of the world.
30 April 2012
Alternate Earth (Pete’s World)
(A Few Steps into the Future from our Universe)
There was far more activity in the lab than Rose had ever remembered seeing, all of it tinged with the slight edge of panic.
She made her way through the bustling scientists that had been involved with the Dimension Cannon project, her eyes searching for the man in charge. She’d been awakened from a not-so-sound sleep by the very early morning call, the voice on the other end of the line having her out of bed and dressed in less than ten minutes, and then at Torchwood’s main science facility in near to thirty. The woman who’d contacted her hadn’t given her any details, only that she was needed immediately, and that it was extremely serious.
Rose could understand the lack of detail; after all, the Dimension Cannon was above Top Secret, and even though the phone lines were as secured as they could be, there was always a chance that someone could have hacked through the firewalls that protected their communications. They couldn’t risk word of the project to get out. There were a lot of unscrupulous people out there, and Rose didn’t want any more damage done to the dimensional walls than had already been found.
What was causing the damage, no one seemed to know.
Rose had a gut feeling that it had to do with the stars going out. The darkness was getting worse and worse as the nights went by, and they needed to discover just what was causing it. She couldn’t prove what she knew in her heart, but Torchwood’s best minds were working on it. Hopefully they’d work it out, and a way to stop it.
Who they really needed was the Doctor.
The problem with that was the Doctor was on the other side of the dimensional barrier. While Rose had hope that she’d get back there someday, at this point things were simply too precarious to take the chance of breaching the walls and going home.
Besides, the cannon didn’t work.
It wasn’t for lack of trying. According to the lead scientist, the technology was sound…but for some reason the cannon simply wouldn’t function, and nothing they’d done had done the job.
She veered toward the familiar voice. Standing next to the main control computer was the project’s Director, Phillip Coulson, his usually reserved features pinched with what Rose just knew was worry. Beside him, working at the main computer, was the Dimension Cannon’s lead scientist, Dr Ianto Jones, and he was moving faster than she’d ever seen him, his hands twisting over the controls frantically.
If they were both in this early – although Dr Jones had a tendency to work all hours, simply because he often forgot to leave – then it had to be extremely serious.
“Doctor Coulson,” she greeted the project head, “what’s going on?”
“Sorry to get you out of bed like this,” he apologised, blue eyes serious behind his black-framed spectacles, “but we have an event…”
“The cannon just switched itself on,” Dr Jones butted him, sounding harried, “and we can’t pinpoint why.”
Rose regarded both of them closely, frowning. “I thought the cannon didn’t work.”
“It didn’t,” Dr Coulson agreed. “But for some reason it just started scanning. We’re still trying to figure out just what happened.”
“The only thing I can see,” Dr Jones replied, without ceasing his work on the computer, “is that there’s been a massive power surge through the dimensional wall, cracking it badly.” He finally turned to look at her, and Rose immediately knew what he was about to tell her was bad. “From the readings we’ve been getting, it looks as if the walls between the individual dimensions are finally coming down…even the Void is gone.”
Rose’s heart felt as if it had stopped. She might not have the education these two men had – after all, she’d been a shopgirl before meeting the Doctor, and everything she’d learned was either from him or what she’d decided to study for herself – but even she was aware just how bad this was. “How long do we have before everything collapses?”
Coulson and Jones glanced at each other, and Rose could practically see the unspoken conversation passing between them. They were both aware that she was from a dimension different from theirs, and a lot of the work they’d done on the project had been based on what Rose had seen in her travels with th e Doctor. There had also been the research that Torchwood had done, including the original dimension jumpers that had been used to cross the Void. It had all been at Rose’s urging in the beginning, through Peter Tyler, the current Director of Torchwood, that had instigated the current research, convincing him that having that sort of dimentional travel was only a good thing for business.
Jones finally sighed. “Not long,” the Welshman answered, his fingers finally still. “Maybe a couple of days at the most. And with time flowing faster here than in your original dimension…” He shrugged.
“There’s a cascade effect,” Coulson added. “The longer this goes on, the faster it happens.”
“Do you have any idea what’s causing it?” It was at times like this that Rose really needed the Doctor. She had no doubt he’d have been able to figure this out and stop it. “What can we do to stop it?”
Jones leaned back against the computer console, rubbing his eyes tiredly. “The only way would be to find the source. From what I’ve been able to tell, it’s in a different dimension from ours...in fact, it’s your own home dimension from the readings we’re getting. And the cannon seems to have centred on these particular people.” He went back to the computer, typing in a few commands.
Two photos popped up on the screen, side-by-side.
The first one was a woman, with red hair and strong features. Rose liked her immediately, even though she’d never met her. She looked as if she wouldn’t take any nonsense.
The second was a man. He had a handsome face, looking well-lived in, as if its owner had seen a lot of the world and it hadn’t treated him particularly well, yet he could still laugh about it. He had short, sandy brown-blondish hair and eyes that Rose couldn’t decide what colour they were; blue…or maybe hazel…perhaps green. He was wearing some sort of tactical gear, and had an actual quiver with arrows strapped to his back.
“Do we know who they are?” she asked.
Jones shook his head. “Even though the dimensional barriers are collapsing, we don’t have any way of accessing any records from their world. However, the woman is currently in London, and the man in Cardiff.”
Rose chewed her lip, thoughts roiling through her brain. Maybe the man was the Doctor? Had he regenerated again? But why the hell would be carrying around arrows? The man resembled a soldier more than a Time Lord, so that wasn’t it.
“We checked the records here in our dimension,” Coulson said, “and came up with two names: Donna Noble and Clint Barton. They’re both fairly ordinary, and this dimension’s Barton doesn’t have an archery hobby, so we really can’t extrapolate anything from their backgrounds here.”
Somehow, Rose didn’t think that archery was the ‘hobby’ of the other dimensional Clint Barton.
“Cardiff and London are both close,” Coulson pointed out. “And, if the timelines are somehow connecting these two, then it stands to reason they’ll meet at some point. All we need to do is find that point and be there when it’s time.”
“We need to figure out how to stop the dimensions from collapsing,” Jones said.
Rose nodded. And she was willing to bet these two strangers would be in the thick of things.
Also, she knew the Doctor well enough by now, he’d be in the thick of things.
“I need to go and find the Doctor.”
Both men nodded in unison. “We’ll make sure you have a way to contact us here,” Jones replied. “We can use the cannon to centre you anywhere you need to go.”
“I’ll need to have you find the TARDIS,” she said. “It shouldn’t be hard to do.”
Coulson didn’t look happy. “Ms Tyler…Rose…if anything were to go wrong…”
“We still have to try.” It wasn’t like she was thinking the same thing. But she needed to find the Doctor, and she somehow felt that, locating him, she’d also locate these two others.
“Understood.” Coulson nodded once, sharply, accepting what she was saying. They’d all been working on this project mostly on her say-so, and because her dad-double had ordered it, but everyone on the dimension cannon knew the first step was to have helped her find the Doctor. Any other outcomes would have been a bonus.
Rose didn’t want to be in this dimension. There was nothing for her here, except for her Mum, who’d gotten together with this different version of her dad and they’d even had a son together, leaving her behind. Rose felt surplus to demands, and all she wanted to do was find the Doctor and travel with him again.
It had crossed her mind that she was being selfish. Maybe the Doctor didn’t want her to come back to him…
No, she couldn’t think that. She’d put the idea for this project in the correct ears, and it had all come to fruition.
It didn’t escape her that the only reason that the dimension cannon was even working was because the universe was ending, which really was par for the course in her mixed-up life.
“How long before we can be ready for transfer?” she asked.
“Two hours,” Jones answered promptly.
“Then get things started. I need to pick up a couple of things, then I’ll be ready to leave.”
It was time. Rose was going back to her Doctor, although it wasn’t under the best circumstances.
She was finally going home, to where she truly belonged.