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Title: Tough Little Guy
Series: Riverlets Through Time
Rating: T (some major counts of child abuse)
Author: tkel_paris
Summary: The Silence kidnapped Melody Williams and another child. Too bad for them that child was Tommy Noble, the Other Heart of the Meta-Crisis. Tenth in the "Riverlets Through Time" series.
Dedication: nini_cuddles
Disclaimer: This one qualifies as an OC. So nope, not mine.
Author's Note: This might be one of the odder stories I've written. I'm writing non-dialogue, which can leave a lot to be desired, and from a small child's POV. Of course, the small child also has the Doctor's memories floating in his head, so that makes things a little more complicated. Hope this turned out okay enough. The plus to this story? No infodump, to quote one of my reviewers, is needed. I can jump in pretty much right where the last story left off.

Bridal Fears
Diverging Truths
Truth Shines Through
Flowers of Time
Handy('s) Story
A Mother's Awakening
Soldierly Ramblings
The Girl Who Created Nicknames
The Most Patient Nurse in History

The bad people took Tommy and Amy's baby – no, they'd just named her Melody – away, and Tommy's heart beat fast. But he knew the monsters (that included those scary ones that made people forget they saw them!) didn't know two things his Daddy taught him.

One was how to hold his breath. So he could fake being asleep when they put that cloth over his mouth. He might physically only be just three years old, but he carried Daddy's memories. Oh, he couldn't access a lot of them, but it was enough to make him bonkers sometimes, to quote Mummy.

The other? Tommy was a telepath. He had enough Time Lord in him that he could send and receive messages.

When he knew the bad people had taken them to their hide-out, he tried to establish what Daddy called Contact. Toughing another's mind without being in the same room, or even the same moment in time. He could try Mummy, as his connection with her would be strongest, but her mind was too messy for her to make sense of the location. She was human. She couldn't help it! He could try Daddy, but he'd be busy calming Mummy and trying to figure things out.

That left Jenny and Ben. As much as Jenny had learned, the only choice was Ben. They had shared memories that the others didn't: the memories of being the Hand. So Tommy thought about bubbling over detecting Jenny, and over her coming back. He focused hard, still pretending to be asleep.

The delay felt like an eternity, especially at his physical age, but he felt Ben answer. Tommy suppressed a smile. His family knew where he and Melody were, and were coming.

But he had to do something. He had the memories of knowing how to do all sorts of things, but his physical age limited what he could do. The only things Daddy had taught him so far was how to control broadcasting his own thoughts, and how to start sifting through what he heard from others.

That meant he could still hear everything around him. And he knew what the Silence wanted with Melody: to brainwash her into a killer – to target Daddy!

Time to use every last bit of Time Lord trickery! Combine them with human instinct to drive the Silence crazy! Make them unable to fight back when Mummy and Daddy came! Protect Melody from things she couldn't protect herself from!

So he used his best weapon: shouting. At the monsters guarding him, to make them think a bit and plant a little rebellion in their heads. They were just the tools of the Silence, and they had the potential to be more. To think for themselves. Tommy knew it might get ugly, but he had to stop them from hurting Melody!

It worked. Too well. The monsters suddenly turned on the other guards, attacking them!

Tommy covered his ears and closed his eyes. He could sink into his own mind, but he couldn't shut out the thoughts of the Silence's soldiers. Their panic, the monsters' anger, and other things beside!

What would Mummy and Daddy say when they knew? They didn't like killing or guns! And Tommy could hear both happening all over the complex – through his ears and his head.

It felt too long until things became quiet. Tommy slowly opened his eyes. He was still in a prison, but it wasn't guarded. Still, he was too small to reach for the lock. If he had Daddy's Sonic on him, maybe, but Daddy wasn't going to make one for him until he was at least eight. When he'd asked, Daddy's eyes went wide and he shook his head hard. Nope, Daddy had said, you get into enough trouble already! Tommy had said that Jenny and Ben didn't get to be kids, so he should be alloted three lots of trouble!

Jenny and Ben laughed hard. But Daddy frowned and just shook his head, saying that Mummy wouldn't buy that argument. Which Tommy couldn't dispute, much to his dismay. He pouted over that until Mummy came into the room, asking what happened. You didn't make Mummy upset, Tommy knew. Especially not when she carried babies in her tummy.

He hoped he could talk Daddy into making him something like it, though. Would be nice here! He might have tiny hands and fingers, but he could get into most things in the TARDIS. Mummy always lamented his ability to slip into things, and his liking to put things in his mouth. He was so like Daddy, she often complained.

Although he had enough of Mummy in him to not trust anything here was safe to put in his young mouth. He might be more like her with respect to thinking of his own safety.

Mummy and the babies. The babies were ginger, like her. Pretty, of course, but why couldn't he have Mummy's hair, too?! He pouted over that – until he sensed that Amy's baby was in danger. He rushed to try to warn her, but saw her and Uncle Rory hit on the head.

He sat around, waiting for something to happen. He knew whoever was in charge would react badly to the guards and monsters all being gone or injured.

Tommy didn't have to wait long. He heard people approaching and heard the thoughts of a woman who had to be the leader. She was furious, demanding to know how the monsters could've possibly turned on the rest of the Silence. She and one other eye-patch wearing person, a man, entered.

He could hear their thoughts, and the whispers they thought he couldn't overhear. The man was scared, but hiding it. The woman was angry, as angry as Mummy was when whenever someone tried to hurt Daddy. The leather she wore made him uneasy. That much worn by a person couldn't be good, could it?

The woman was called Madame Kavorian. Tommy sensed the name from the man as she silently fumed. Somehow, Mummy angry was scarier. Could mentioning that anger her enough to take him to Melody? So he told her that she wasn't as scary as his parents were to their enemies.

The woman raised her exposed brow skeptically, and said that he should tread with care. Tommy was scared by how uncaring the woman was, but he could hide it well enough. So he said that she should've known better than to grab the Oncoming Storm's kid.

She suddenly unlocked his prison and grabbed him by one arm, half-dragging him and half-carrying him out. His shoulder popped out! It hurt!

Madame and the man took him into a room, and he gasped. There was a monstrous sight in the middle! A huge machine with stuff linking to it, and there was something in the center. He could hear Melody screaming and knew she was in the room, but he couldn't see her. It hit him: she was inside the machine!

Tommy couldn't hold his tongue then. He shouted at Madame about how Daddy was going to punish her for hurting a child! How could she think her plan to brainwash Melody would work?!

He didn't see the slap coming. It hurt, too! Worse than his arm! His eyes went wide as he realized he could be hurt worse. Madame growled about how she could break every bone in his body for his insolence, that she would put him through the same thing just for good measure to make him tell what he knew. Tommy cried-

A loud sonic noise burst out! Madame dropped Tommy's arm, sending him to the floor, covering her ears and screaming in pain. The others did the same. Tommy's half-Time Lord ears didn't like the noise, but he could handle it. Even with the pain. He looked up and saw – Captain Jack! He wore earplugs and slapped cuffs on one of the guards. Suddenly Ben, Jenny, and Gwen appeared behind him – all wearing earplugs and cuffing guards. And there was Daddy behind them, using the Sonic with some amplifier to make the room shake! And there-!

Tommy ran right into Mummy's arms, crying her name. He didn't notice that she took one look at his limp arm and reddened cheek, and knew what happened. She scooped him up as Daddy followed her, but then she marched right up to the not yet cuffed Madame, and punched her unconscious. She flinched, her hand hurt, but she didn't care. She just hugged Tommy tightly.

Daddy stopped the noise. Everyone was either captured or dead, Jack noted as he slapped cuffs on Madame. Uncles Rory and Mickey, and Aunts Amy and Martha followed, dragging cuffed guards with them. He could hear Ianto answer some question, but the pain was too much!

Tommy, faced buried in Mummy's neck, whimpered where Melody was. He overheard Daddy using his Sonic on the machine, talking with Aunt Martha about what it was doing to the baby. Soon Melody's cries filled the room, and Amy burst in to help free her. When Tommy felt Melody's fears lessen a little at being held by her mummy, he sagged against his Mummy.

He heard the Sonic again, right by him. Daddy was checking his injuries, and was angry. He knew who caused them, and Tommy wondered if Daddy would be mad enough to kill Madame. Or maybe let someone kill her.

Not that Tommy had the chance to find out. Mummy quickly gave him some medicine Daddy handed her, and it made Tommy sleepy. He murmured a plea for his parents to stay with him, and that was the last thing he remembered.

When he woke, he was still in Mummy's arms, but he was inside the TARDIS. He heard Amy and Rory singing softly to Melody. His arm and cheek no longer hurt. He tested his arm, and it felt okay. His Time Lord DNA helped him heal. Along with whatever Daddy and the TARDIS – probably with Aunt Martha's help – did. Mummy's hand, he noticed, looked like Daddy healed it. She would've waited till he was healed. A Mummy always did that.

Tommy rubbed his eyes, and asked if the bad guys had been taken to the Shadow Proclamation. When he said it, though, he realized it was a daft question. Daddy had to be careful dealing with them now, having slipped away from them during the Planets Crisis. What Tommy did notice was how quiet things were.

A voice said that the bad men were all in a special prison, far away where they couldn't hurt anyone. River Song! Tommy looked at her. She looked tired, sad, and a bit upset. She added that Madame, however, had been sent to a cyber prison where she was having to live through what she'd put him and Melody through – over and over again.

Tommy thought about it a little. It wasn't death, which Daddy hated, but it was kinda cruel. Then again, she was mean to them. She'd hurt them both! So he just rested his head on Mummy's shoulder again, barely managing a goodbye to River when she left.

Mummy didn't let him out of her arms except to let Daddy hold him when his little sisters cried for attention and Mummy's milk. Tommy was okay with that. Jenny had once called Mummy's hugs Time Lord medicine, and Daddy and Ben had agreed. (So did Tommy!) Mind, Daddy had to give him to Ben when Mummy needed help.

Ben was an okay substitute in a pinch. They were the two hearts of the Meta-Crisis, and even with the huge age gap between them, they got each other in ways that only twins could manage. Besides, Ben probably felt the hurt as much as he had.

Tommy looked for Melody, asking about her. Ben brought him over to where Aunt Martha was checking a few scans. Amy held Melody in her arms as she and Rory sang some favourite tune. The little Time Lord asked his Aunt Martha if his future friend would be okay.

Aunt Martha smiled. The Silence hadn't had much time to brainwash Melody. They had to worry about keeping her well aware of how Uncle Doctor was a good guy, but it was a piece of cake compared with the rescue. With lots of love and comfort, Melody would bounce back.

Tommy smiled, and reached out to hold her hand. She gripped it – a reflex, Daddy had said when the twins did it – and looked at him. He promised her that they were safe. They'd go back to Earth for a bit, and then back to traveling.

Jenny and Ben chuckled, and Aunt Martha stroked his hair. Even Amy and Rory smiled, saying he was so like his father. Tommy knew that, of course! But he was also Mummy's son! They better remember that!

TO BE CONTINUED IN “A Girl's Changed Tune”


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 15th, 2012 05:48 am (UTC)
Awww...poor little guy. Glad he and Melody are okay.

Mar. 16th, 2012 11:14 am (UTC)
Yeah. I hated doing that to him. :( But it gave Donna a chance to do what a lot of fans WANT to do to Madame. At least we got that. :D

Mar. 16th, 2012 10:15 am (UTC)
God, I loved this part. so.cute. disturbing because of child abuse, but adorable... how did you do this?
I have the impression that now that the Doctor won't be with River, Tommy will... why do I have this impression?
Mar. 16th, 2012 11:12 am (UTC)
Sometimes I don't know, either. :) Thank you!

*wide eyes* Well...you'll see. ;)
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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