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FIC: Flipped, Book 3 (11/13)

Next chapter was supposed to be the final chapter. But you know Muses. Sometimes they strike when you think it was all done. Bonzina found alterations and expansions to make, last minute. So... one more post than I'd planned.

Title: Flipped, Book 3
Rating: heavy T, with some M/MA
Author: tkel_paris
Summary: David Noble thought he had come to terms with the strange feelings the female Doctor inspired, and it seemed to be helped by Martha Jones joining them. But when the Aubertide threaten the Doctor, protecting her requires a cover that will test his sanity and his ability to find the right thing to do. Written for tardis_mole.
Required Disclaimer: The summary should be enough to tell you I own nothing.
Dedications: My good friend tardis_mole, for helping me discover my talent at editing and for being an inspiration. You've challenged me to go beyond what I previously thought I would like, and so this is the farthest I've gone from my comfort zone so far. Who knows where I'll go next?
And another important shout-out: sykira, whose LJ post about John Barrowman's comments about how Doctor Who could eventually go was the ultimate spark for this idea. So I suppose that means the ultimate blame for this lies with the Barrowman. I can only imagine what he would think, although I suspect he would heartily approve. :P
Author's Note: Originally spawned from a different idea that split into three, this is a new version of one of those ideas revived as a birthday present. And it's spawned a slightly AU version as a Christmas present. The original prompt from TM boiled down to this: “The Doctor and Donna in a situation that's never been done before.” Ask and ye shall receive, my friend. Enjoy the second sequel. :D A VERY Belated Happy Birthday, TM! :DDD

Special Disclaimer: I refuse to be held responsible for any $2000/₤2000 lattes, spit-takes, fainting spells, workplace/school gaffes, or falling against/from things that might happen if you're not careful while reading this story. Especially in certain chapters. Read at your own risk. (I put this in because I was warned by one of my betas, cassikat, that my emails should come with a spit-take warning. So I'm looking out for y'all. ;D)

And TM, be careful that you don't hyperventilate from reading some of the sections. I know you. :P And so sorry for the delay. At least I have a legitimate excuse for not working on it last year; we had our balrog to work on. :D

Thanks to cassikat and bas_math_girl for betaing. Couldn't have done it without y'all.


Chapter One / Chapter Two / Chapter Three / Chapter Four / Chapter Five / Chapter Six / Chapter Seven / Chapter Eight / Chapter Nine / Chapter Ten


Flipped, Book 3

Started July 14, 2013
Presumed Finished December 31, 2015
Alterations Finished January 6, 2016


Chapter Eleven: Victory and Devastation

Father-of-Mine stepped in front of David once the scarecrows forced him out into the back. “The Human girl says you know where the Doctor is. You will tell us.”

David snapped his mouth shut. And just stared right at the being who had stolen the old man before him. He was just grateful that his grandfather was nowhere to be found.

Rose was impatient. “Come on, tell them what they need to know!”

“You don't know who you're dealing with, Rose,” David said, feigning calm. “They're the enemy. The Doctor's the ally, remember? Or have you forgotten who saved our lives in the Hendrick's basement?”

“Where is the Doctor?!” demanded Mother-of-Mine.

“I don't know where she is.”

He doubted he would survive this, even with the news that the Doctor was herself again. But he would fight to the death to keep her and the universe safe.

“She was seen with you yesterday,” Daughter-of-Mine said. “The Human girl confirmed it. She cannot be far away.”

He remained silent.

“David, just tell them! They'll let you go!” Rose pleaded.

“You're a fool if you think that, you stupid, selfish brat,” he said, glaring at her.

Rose shook her head. “You don't understand-”

“No, you don't understand, Rose Tyler!”

“Where is the key to the Doctor's ship?” Son-of-Mine snapped.

“I don't have it.”

“Come on,” Rose snapped, running back inside and grabbing at the keys he had dropped. “Has to be one of these.”

She tried each key in the TARDIS lock.

David found a tiny bit of gallow's humor in the actions. “They're the enemy, Rose. They'll destroy the planet if they get inside.”

He was able to keep a calm tone because he knew what would happen. But he also felt a stirring of hope. The Aubertide were shaking in their stolen bodies. They had to be near starvation.

But why hadn't they just tried to take the information from him? And why was Rose still alive?

She exclaimed wordlessly, sounding close to a swear.. “None of these keys work. David, where is the Doctor and the key to open this thing?”

He remained silent.

“Oi! Let him go! Please!”

The panicked voice was utterly familiar to David, and he couldn't stop his head from turning toward it. His already standing out freckles turned even darker upon seeing how many people were trailing the Doctor. His entire family, save for the three youngest and their mothers, were all there. Even Curie, leash held by his dad.

Mother of Mine sniffed the air, and frowned. “You are the same as the Time Lord we saw, but we cannot smell her. What did you do?”

Donna's eyes, face, and body vibrated with panic. “How am I supposed to know?! All I know is what these people have told me. They say there's something inside there that has to do with the life force of a Time Lord, and they say it'll only open if I step inside and do something. Look, whatever it is, you can have it! Just let my husband go when you do!”

David tried to shake his head, but his body refused to cooperate. What the hell was Donna doing?! And what were his family and friends thinking in getting involved?!

“Step inside. Give us the proof.”

She shuddered, but straightened her shoulders. “Then let me though, you freaky Stepford wife!”

“They are all coming inside,” declared Father-of-Mine.

Rose watched as the scarecrows forced the entire group inside. She went willingly, still unnerved by the beings but confident that they would manage what she set as their goal.

David's friends and family, all of whom refused to let the Doctor go alone, watched nervously as they followed the directions as Donna hurriedly opened the lock with a key she drew from her shirt. She rushed inside, frantically looking around and looking to make sure none of the scarecrows or the crazy people could touch her. The others did their best to avoid being touched. Curie whimpered by Geoffrey's side, looking pitifully at her Human. Jack looked around and wished he had a disruptor to use.

Rose stayed close to the captive David, as close as she could while avoiding touching the scarecrows. As soon as she had her chance, she'd grab him and run. He'd follow to escape. That the others would likely follow was unlucky, but she'd deal with that later.

With everyone inside, including the scarecrows, the shaking Donna approached the controls. “Okay, let me look here! I can't make one wrong step! There's too many things that can go wrong! Me, who can't even change a plug!” Her hands hovered over the controls, as if looking for the right one. “And there's one more thing. One very important thing.”

“What is it, you pathetic ginger cow?!” cried Rose.

In an instant, Donna's posture turned from frightened to stony and stern. Her eyes lifted to meet Rose's gaze, and the four people who had been the Doctor's companions all knew that look.

The Oncoming Storm, the Vengeful God, had been awakened.

“I lied.”

She slammed her hand over a big red button.

Instantly the TARDIS roared to life. David, Wilf and Sylvia flinched at the sounds only they could hear, and covered their ears ineffectually. Curie whimpered loudly, pressing hard against Geoffrey for comfort, but he had none to give.

The Family of Blood paled, realizing what power they were up against. They all took a step backwards, but then beams of light lit them all and shocks emerged from the TARDIS, aimed at the scarecrows restraining David. He yelped as his captors lost their grip, letting him push one aside as the beams vanished, taking the Family with them. The scarecrows promptly all collapsed, and the TARDIS made them vanish as well.

It wasn't the plan, but Rose was an opportunist. She turned and lunge at David. “You're safe-!”

But he was aware of her and put up an elbow to block her path as he side-stepped.

Yet she didn't make contact.

Curie tugged loose from Geoffrey and flew to her Human's defense. She knocked Rose over, forcing a face-plant against the grating.

Rose screamed when her face hit, and when she raised her head her nose was broken, bleeding. And it wasn't the only place she bled from. Curie bit her to keep her down.

Sylvia rushed to David's side, scooping him into a hug. She couldn't speak through her fright, but she managed incoherent sounds to convey relief. Geoffrey joined her, along with Wilf and Eileen.

David numbly accepted the hugs and kisses, but focused his attention on his dog. “Curie! Off!”

Curie let go and hopped off, heading right back to his side and rubbing against his legs.

Rose tried to get up, but found Jack and Mickey grabbing her arms and holding her still. “Hey! She bit me! She broke my nose!”

“Oh, grow up, you little bint!” David shouted, beyond angry. “I didn't call her off for your sake. I called her off for hers. Now I have to take her to the vet, because God knows where you've been!”

“You have no idea,” Jack said, recovering his voice. “That car she was in yesterday? Doesn't belong to her.”

Mickey glared at his ex. “What'd you do, Rose? Sleep with him?”

David groaned. “Lovely! Add a rabies shot to the mix!”

“For Curie or Rose?”

Most of the room was in too much shock to move or react in any way. But that the Doctor spoke stunned them all.

The Doctor shrugged. “Olfactory misdirection. I didn't have enough time to set it up before, and I suppose I was being kind then. I wanted to give them a chance to just die naturally. Now they've threatened too much, and thanks to you, Rose Tyler!”

David found his voice. “Just let them die, Doctor. Don't give them anything like the immortality they crave!”

She blinked at him, non-plussed. “Not even after what they did?”

He pulled free of the hugging to launch his protest, which he knew needed to be said. “Whatever cruel punishment you're thinking of, that they deserve to suffer for a long time, it's wrong. It still gives them something they wanted. Deny them it all. Just try to find a way to save the people they took over, Doctor!”

And in that moment, the Doctor gave up on yet another plan. Simply because he told her he disagreed. This time more because she feared doing something to horrify him into leaving.

Not that he might anyway after what the Old Girl made them deal with by putting them in this situation. She subconsciously rubbed her belly.

The sight made David's insides clench painfully. “Excuse me,” he choked.

“David!” cried Rose before he could run outside.

He turned on her, making her step back from shock. “What the hell did you think you were doing? You helped a dangerous threat nearly kill the whole planet! What makes you think that if we'd somehow survived that I'd go anywhere with the person who put my friends and family in danger?!”

She shook her head as she protested, even as he ran outside. “They just wanted the Doctor. I wanted you! We'd be good together!”

“You what?!” shouted Sylvia. She marched to Rose's side, her glare making the young girl shudder from the weight of the look if not its anger. “He told me about you when he described meeting the Doctor. You were the stupid girl who at sixteen thought herself equal to a relationship with a man over thirty. That is not love. That is obsession and using a man as a father figure! As angry as we get in this family, he doesn't usually call people stupid or dumbos without cause. Oh, he referred to the previous Doctor as 'Dumbo' at times, but it was never meant as a true insult. Just something to rattle his cage.”

The Doctor remembered those days. At the time it had been a little unclear what David's intent was, but his mother had to know the truth. She was too good at sniffing it out. But this was almost like Sylvia had decided the Doctor was okay after all. Not what she was expecting given what she could now remember about how Sylvia had reacted to Donna.

Or maybe it was because she knew her grandchildren had died.

/=/=/=/=/

David rushed into the house and shut the door, trusting that no one would follow him anytime soon. He needed the privacy. His feet took him up the stairs in a rush.

/=/=/=/=/

“You, little girl, are a disgrace to humanity!” Sylvia continued her mother's rant. “Do you mean that you were willing to sacrifice the entire planet to have even a shot in hell with my son?! How long would you have had?!”

Geoffrey put a hand on her shoulder. “Sylvia, let me.” His voice was firm, his body tense from holding a reaction in.

Respect for her husband's role in the family, not to mention respect for his need to protect enabled Sylvia to back off. She also owned to herself considerable curiosity about what he would say and do, since it was their only child (and the children he had helped create) who had been threatened. Never mind that although her anger was silencing the girl, it did not seem to be making any real dents in her mind.

“Do you have any idea what makes a working marriage? Have you actually been able to watch a good one in action? I'm taking those blank looks you're making that the answer is no. Let me tell you something. Any relationship involves work. Work at seeing if it will go anywhere, work at making it continue, and work at making it thrive. That is what David saw growing up – that anything worthwhile is worth working hard for. Sometimes you get lucky and something falls into your lap, but there's still work in keeping it going. He and the Doctor had to work out a balance, I could tell back two years ago when she was still a he.”

At that moment, everyone else began to realize that Rose still wasn't entirely convinced that the Doctor was in fact the Doctor. Or that she respected alien life.

/=/=/=/=/

When David's feet stopped, he found himself in the nursery. The room he had set aside mentally for the purpose when he bought the house. The room that held some of his childhood things from over the years, and now held all sorts of things his parents had brought over. The room that Donna had gone full tilt on decorating once the shock of the discovery wore off. The room that had started to make him a little more excited every time he set foot in it.

/=/=/=/=/

Geoffrey continued. “David worked hard at keeping the Doctor from trouble these past three months. He risked his friendship to ensure that 'Donna Noble' never saw anything but what she was expecting to see. When you care about anyone, friend or family or partner, you will go the extra distance for them while respecting them. You liked what my son represented financially without respecting what got him there. You liked his looks without giving any thought to who he is. You seemed to do the same to the Doctor when you first met him. And now you won't respect that aliens might be completely different from us and that that's fine. You've threatened the person David called his best friend ever. That is something he can never forgive. And his mother and I can never forget what you did. Captain, what's your name again?”

“Jack Harkness,” was the answer, crisply given as he tightened his hold on Rose's arm.

“Is there anything this girl could be arrested for?”

/=/=/=/=/

David stumbled to the Moses basket set up already, and reached for the snuggle-cloth teddy resting there, the one Donna found last week. It was unisex, but it reminded him of things he found when his younger cousins on his father's side stayed over when he was five. Things he had used then, and his parents had set aside in the hopes of his children using them. The room was set for a little child – possibly a ginger-nut – that he had dreamed about for weeks. Twins, he had been convinced.

Twins who would now never be born. Twins he had no idea until then that he wanted so very badly.

/=/=/=/=/

Jack thought quickly. “Loads and loads of things. Starting with endangering Ministry of Defence operatives. It'll all have to kept secret. Let's start by getting her out of here and to UNIT. Mickey?”

“Yeah, I'll call Jackie. This will be fun, Rose, and it's all on your own head. And shut your crying. He needs peace!”

Rose's bluster and shouting carried on as she was dragged outside. Sylvia and Geoffrey's glares soon quieted it as they followed. Wilfred took Curie's leash and trailed behind them.

Martha stepped toward the Doctor. “Doctor, we need to go to the infirmary.”

The Doctor's eyes widened to saucers. She knew it had to be done, but her feet refused to move.

Sarah Jane sighed miserably and stepped to her old friend's other side. “You'll need to start by taking off that biodamper.”

It took the Doctor several seconds to work up the nerve to do so.

And she nearly passed out once it was off her finger.

/=/=/=/

Now he felt empty, and it was growing into heaviness. He didn't just want children. He wanted this ginger Doctor's children. He wanted little versions of her to dote on.

He didn't know how he would begin to function without her. His feelings were so strong it didn't matter anymore that she had been a he when they met.

This was what the Devil had meant. The world he had been building had been destroyed. He might not have seen the instant it happened, but it felt like he had.

The weight of his realization slammed over him like a mega tsunami wave. He sank to the floor as he tried to hold in the cries. But they burst out in agonized wailing. The kind that only happened when your dreams had been shattered forever.

Chapter Twelve: Absolution

Comments

( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
dtstrainers
Jan. 4th, 2016 10:55 am (UTC)
Oh, no!!! The Doctor lost the babies when she returned to being a Time Lord?!? That's just not right! Just as Sylvia had come around to accepting the Doctor/Donna as David's wife and the mother of her grandchildren? Surely they were changed along with her? Or did they just assume there were babies and instead of twins, it was one Gallifreyan baby all along? Hope springs eternal, after all.

And to end this with the mental image of David breaking down was nothing short of cruel. No one does heartbreak and emotional devastation like DT, so this was a powerful way to close out this chapter.
tkel_paris
Jan. 7th, 2016 05:17 am (UTC)
(And I'm finally catching up with the reviews...)

Wait for the end... as I know you did.

Yes. I had to end it there. Best cliffhanger of the bunch. Especially as the story began to grow. Again.
dm12
Jan. 4th, 2016 02:19 pm (UTC)
Hmmm... so David is thinking the Doctor is going to leave him when they are done cleaning up the mess there, and feels keenly the loss of both the Doctor and the baby/babies.

I'm thinking that the biodamper hid the Time Lord (on top of the chameleon arch), and perhaps also hid the baby's TL DNA. So it would look like the baby died when the human DNA went as the Doctor changed back, and maybe, just maybe, the baby didn't actually die. That's why Sarah Jane told her to remove the biodamper. The Doctor may have fainted because she now felt the baby in her mind... I'm trying to be an optimist.

As for Rose, she is lucky with what will happen to her now, because the Doctor held back on everybody at David's request. He stopped her cold from punishing the Aubertide, and that probably extended to Rose. I love how Curie attacked Rose to protect David, and everyone gave her a severe dressing-down. And calling the Doctor a pathetic ginger cow earned her the Doctor's Oncoming Storm look, that's what tipped the scales.

Next, we need to find out why the TARDIS set them up like that; she took a huge gamble with everything here. She's not humanoid, and doesn't understand things from that point of view. That said, I think she's got more of a Time sense than a Time Lord, and detects things that the Doctor never would.... David and the Doctor need to come to terms with everything and, if necessary (see above), mourn the loss of their baby/babies together.
tkel_paris
Jan. 7th, 2016 05:21 am (UTC)
Optimism sometimes works. My answer would've been different had I been able to answer before posting the next chapter, of course.

That, and the Doctor was expecting to me a mother. So she'd have some wish to be compassionate toward Jackie.

That's coming. Just wait...
bas_math_girl
Jan. 5th, 2016 12:30 am (UTC)
When the Doctor changes back from being human is never easy in such stories; but this time we have unborn babies and a sobbing David to visualise too. *sniffs* *wipes my eyes*

The saving grace is that Rose got attacked by a protective Curie, Sylvia was softening considerably, and the Doctor generally had his family and their friends' backing.

I like how you've shifted around David's reaction timeline - made it miles more dramatic (although I should hate you for making it more heartbreaking too).
tkel_paris
Jan. 7th, 2016 05:23 am (UTC)
Yeah. It hurt.

Well, TM pointed out a problem. I'm noting the answer to it in chapter 13, since I'm still working on it.

One of Muse's many tweaks. I'm glad I thought of it, because I think it made the story more powerful.
alimoseby
Jan. 5th, 2016 07:13 am (UTC)
First of all, I am so sorry for not commenting sooner. I normally go on LJ at night before bed, and end up falling asleep. I am a fail. Sorry. :/

That said, I do enjoy this fic and really enjoyed Rose getting her dressing down. I want to hug David though.

~Ali ♥
tkel_paris
Jan. 7th, 2016 05:24 am (UTC)
Hey, I think I almost entirely forgot to comment on one of TM's stories. So I can't talk.

We all do.
tardis_mole
Jan. 5th, 2016 08:59 pm (UTC)
Curie bit Rose? Whilst that might be applauded by some, in Britain that is an automatic death sentence. And, just so you know, we don't have Rabies here.

Very sad chapter. But at least there were plenty of warnings that it was coming. I'm tempted to skip the last chapter. It'll be a little too unbearable.
tkel_paris
Jan. 7th, 2016 05:26 am (UTC)
May not have been the best choice in retrospect. I think Muse was thinking she just reacted in David's defense. Really...? Oops. *sheepish*

I wouldn't do that without a bigger warning. And NOT as a birthday present!
tardis_mole
Jan. 8th, 2016 08:22 am (UTC)
Yes. Dogs that bite are automatically destroyed, regardless whether it was defending someone. The only proviso for that is if you're a postman and a dog bites you on the owner's property.

Thanks. It's an unfortunate fact of life, though. I lost five before some bright spark decided to check my DNA and told me I was a man. it turned out ot be a little more complicated than that, but you can imagine how that conversation went. :D

tkel_paris
Jan. 13th, 2016 03:31 am (UTC)
Why is it a proviso?

*hugs* Losing any hurts, no matter the circumstances. *extra hug*
tardis_mole
Jan. 13th, 2016 08:17 pm (UTC)
According to the Dangerous Dog's Act, a delivery person, such as a postman, who is bitten by a dog on private property cannot press charges, since technically they were not on the property with consent or invitation of the dog owner, and therefore the dog is doing it's job. The proviso is that if the dog chases said person and bites them in the street, they are on public property and therefore liable under public law.

Thanks. *hugs back*
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )

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