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FIC: Always Running

Title: Always Running
Rating: T
Author: tkel_paris
Summary: Rushing away from a threat post-JE, the Doctor runs into someone he thought was dead. And she isn't about to let him run from his past actions regarding a certain someone.
Disclaimer: This someone should've been there at the end of the series. Proves who owns what.
Dedication: tardis-mole. I know this one came from a prompt list.
Author's Note: Little variety of emotions here, especially at the end. Will probably one day provoke a sequel. Formerly a 2012 Story a Day prompt, but wasn't started.

Part of my mass posting before starting NaNoWriMo 2013. :D

Always Running

Started May 2, 2013
Finished October 30, 2013

Another day, another despot to overthrow because he was making his people suffer and was using technology alien to his planet. Another day of running away from the goons who were making their last stand against the changes.

It was nothing the Doctor hadn't seen before. Would probably see it again many times. At least it gave him something to do since the...

No, best not to think about that. Made him distracted.

What was different about today was that senses he'd thought were dead since the Time Lock were tingling again. Someone with Time Lord blood was around, and they were helping the efforts along another part of the planet.

So the Doctor was also trying to find this person. Not just to save their live, but to have someone to keep him company. As someone very precious had once told him, he needed someone to stop him. Might this person do the job?

His instincts started running on hyperalert. The fellow Time Lord had to be close by, and based on the rapid footfalls he was hearing, they were also running. He drew himself to a corner to wait for them.

The person wasn't as big as he was, which perhaps made them more agile, and the rapid turning at a moment's notice suggested some degree of specialized training. As they came close he waited to get a glimpse, risking being seen. And he froze solid.

The runner came to sudden halt at the sight of him, and slowly smiled. “Hello, Dad.”

His mouth worked but could only produce one word: “Jenny?”

The sounds of guards intruded on their moment. “Oops,” Jenny said, not sounding sorry at all. “They're mad that I broadcast something that despot didn't want his people learning. Means they're losing control rapidly, and trying to take it out on me. Got to run! Still love the running!”

It got his mind and body working again. He beamed at her, grabbed her hand, and they took off in the direction of the TARDIS. There was no chance to talk, except to compare notes on what they'd done to incur the wrath of the guards. Also, not talking much meant they could dodge their would-be captors more readily.

After a few narrow escapes, they made it inside and he quickly took them safely into the Vortex. Exhaling in relief, he tugged her out of her staring at the insides into a huge hug that lifted her off her feet.

Jenny giggled. “It's lovely to see you, too, Dad,” she choked, emotions getting the better of her.

“How are you alive? I thought you were dead.”

“Don't know. I exhaled some goldish cloud, and then my eyes opened. That's what I was told. Happened about two hours after you left.”

The Doctor released her in shock.

She patted his arms, like she'd seen Donna do. “I forgive you. But I do wonder – if we're so rare, then why'd you leave my body behind?”

He blanched. “It was wrong of me. I... I've seen so much death, lost so many people that I felt I couldn't face seeing your funeral. I had to run. I shouldn't have left your body behind. Someone could've stolen your DNA, made more soliders.”

“Have you been running from the pain ever since those losses happened?”


“Hasn't anyone stopped you?”

He wanted to say that Donna had, but he couldn't speak her name. “No, Jenny. Maybe you'll understand once I show you who and what we really are.”


He stepped close and placed his fingers on her contacts points. Concentrating, he let her see some of his memories, and then opened her mind to let the familial bond form.

Jenny gasped as his hands dropped away, leaving her to absorb what she saw and felt. “That's... all in your head, all the time? The memories, the knowledge, the... utter silence?”

“Yes. Though not so silent now that I have you. I told you that you'd be brilliant, and you clearly have been. Tell me how you left Messaline, how long it's been, and what you've been up to.”

And she did. From the shuttle to the travels and the running. Lots of running, which was the one thing she liked. “Wish I'd had you with me, Dad.” She gasped. “Where's Martha? Where's Mum?”

The questions threw him off. “Um... Martha's back on Earth. She's fine. But who's 'Mum'?”

She laughed. “Oh, I didn't call Donna that, but that's what she was, wasn't she? She named me, made you accept me, and was all in all nice to me. I know we're not related by blood, but I heard of this phenomenon in nature called imprinting, and I think that's what happened. Where is she?”

The innocent expression cut him to the quick. Oh, Rassilon, this was going to break her hearts.

Jenny's face fell. “Is she dead?” she whispered numbly.

“No, no, no, no, no. She's alive. Back on Earth, too. With her family.”

“What family?”

“Her mum and granddad.”

“Well, let's go see her!”

He grabbed her before she could reach for the TARDIS controls. “We can't.”

“Why not?”

The glare was pure Donna. Oh, she had very much imprinted on his companion. That explained the odd linguistic markers that hadn't been there before, given that she spoke rather like his fifth self had – even looking more like that him than anyone else. He cleared his throat and began to explain the coincidences that followed him and Donna leading to the Stolen Planets and the Reality Bomb plot.

Her eyes widened in horror at the implications of the Daleks plans, she cheered over Donna stopping them, and was thrilled that the Children of Time helped bring Earth safely back. But then her smile faded as he explained that he exiled the Duplicate. Her eyes narrowed like she didn't consider his reasons justified, and then they widened as he described what happened to Donna. He recited the prophecy, and what he did to keep her alive.

She was silent for a long moment, eyes flashing rather like Donna's.

The Doctor risked stepping forward. “Jenny-”

Her fist hit him in the jaw, sending him against the railing. His legs gave out from the shock. After he fell to the floor, he looked up at and his protest was silenced by seeing the Oncoming Storm coming down on him. Only it was more like the Oncoming Wildfire.

“How could you?! You killed her! And what were you thinking in 'giving' my brother to Rose?! He could've helped save Mum, couldn't he?! And what makes you think you had any right to condemn him? Or her?! What if you'd been right there?! Wouldn't you have made the same decision?! Answer me!!”

He was silent.

"All that time when I was looking for you, doing what you taught me, defeating bad people and bad aliens and stopping wars and doing what's right - and you were doing that! To my mum! In your mind you think you love her and you did that?! You're nothing like the man I knew. All this time I've been following a lie!"

He paled, stricken.

The TARDIS suddenly roared to life, sending them toward one side of the room. The Doctor struggled to his feet to reach the controls. “Come on, Old Girl! What now?!”

Suddenly, they landed. Jenny, curiosity engaged and feeling like she was being encouraged, hurried outside.


She looked around at the strange place. She felt something whisper in her head: look to your left, and then follow my directions.

So she did, and gasped. “Mum!”

The voice whispered again. Run to her, save her.

She bolted toward the ginger who was looking around for any clues as to who was shouting for whom. She sensed she had very little time to spare.

The Doctor's eyes widened. “Jenny! Please, no!”

Donna saw the blonde rushing toward her, and blinked. It was on the tip of her tongue to ask who she was when she noticed that man who was talking with her family on that Planets day. John Smith, that was his name. But what was that tiny box he stepped out of, looking all panicked?

Then flashes of images came to mind, all featuring him and that box. And then the girl's image flashed before her head. “Jenny...?” she whispered as golden light blurred her vision.

Jenny reached Donna and wordlessly touched her face, just as the voice was telling her to. Both ladies gasped as the mental connection was established.

The Doctor watched in horror as golden light flowed between the two people he loved more than anything. He tore at his hair, wanting to scream but unable to make a sound.

Then Jenny's hands fell away as the light faded. The two caught each other from falling, catching their respective breaths, and then looked at each other.

Trembling, the Doctor struggled over to them, wincing at the injuries Jenny had caused.

Donna looked at the girl's face and shook her head. “But... you died.”

“Healing coma. I know that now, from the new knowledge I took from your head. How do you feel?”

“Better. Bit of a headache, but I feel like myself. And... oh, my god! I remember! Your dad, where is he? That Spaceman has earned a slap for not listening to me and staying for your funeral, never mind wiping my mind!”

The Doctor slowed his pace, which helped his body a little.

It caught Donna's attention, and she stopped short. “What happened to you?”

“I beat him up for not protecting you.”

Donna's lips twisted uncertainly, and sighed. “No more, Jenny. I think he's tortured himself enough over that. Though we will be talking about what's still inside my head.”

The Doctor blinked. “What?”

Rolling her eyes, Donna leaned in and whispered something in his ear.

He gasped, nearly brought to tears.

“Does it mean what I think it does?”

“Yes. Is that okay, Donna?” His voice had never sounded so small.

She made him wait a long moment, and then kissed him gently. “Come on, you two. Come with me. We'll tell my family what really happened, and introduce them to Jenny. Gramps will love you, and I think Mum won't mind having someone she can pass as a blood-related relative – if we need to.”

“What's a Gramps?”

Donna laughed as she dragged the two along. “Oh, and to think I was having a bad day at the latest temp job!”

Jenny grinned wildly. “I'm home then!”

The Doctor agreed. And felt the same for himself.



( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 31st, 2013 08:30 pm (UTC)
Wilf will be absolutely delighted! He was so devastated at what the Doctor had to do to Donna and was so desperate to have him fix it... As for Sylvia, she will adapt, I don't think there's much choice in it, especially since Donna retains certain information.

Good for Jenny, getting all Donna-like, yet with the Doctor's Oncoming Storm added in. Everything she said made absolute sense, although knocking him off his feet may have been a bit overboard. Donna knows him better, knows that he's been punishing himself ever since, yet she still would have given him a slap for what he did to both Jenny and her.

I'm glad Jenny was able to fix the situation with Donna, with the TARDIS's guidance. Now they have to deal with getting her brother back... that issue still remains unresolved. And Donna still knows the Doctor's true name, she's fine with it and so is he... delightful! Now they have to explain that they are bonded/married to Sylvia and Wilf, and how Jenny came about. I'd love to be a fly on the wall for that one!
Nov. 1st, 2013 11:13 am (UTC)
Yes, Sylvia would have no choice. Either she drives Donna to run off with the Time Lords she calls her family, or she accepts it all so Donna stays and perhaps gives her more grandchildren. There is no choice.

Ah, well, a woman scorned and all. And the feeling that her mother was violated would have hit Jenny hard. She probably had to escape a number of cases where her own safety was in jeopardy. So it seemed fitting to me. And therefore, Donna doesn't have to slap him.

Well, I didn't even go there. Perhaps I will one day. :D
Nov. 1st, 2013 02:29 am (UTC)
Yay! Another Jenny comes back story. I love these. Especially when it involves Donna getting her life back. =D

Loved it.

~Ali ♥
Nov. 1st, 2013 11:09 am (UTC)
I hope it brought a smile to your face. :)
Nov. 1st, 2013 03:01 am (UTC)
I don't know why i'd never thought of Jenny being a solution to Donna's mind wipe before! Love this.
Nov. 1st, 2013 11:08 am (UTC)
Well, she might effectively have a blank mind, open to a lot of learning and filled with spaces waiting to be filled. What better place for a copy of her dad's mind to go? She's able to handle it, and she'd still have to be taught what to do with some of it to file it away. :) Thank you. :D
Nov. 3rd, 2013 02:04 pm (UTC)
Yay - a fix-it!! For Jenny and Donna!! :D

I know I shouldn't have been pleased when Jenny thumped the Doctor, but I was. loved this.
Nov. 4th, 2013 06:44 pm (UTC)
Eh, who knows who this younger version of the Oncoming Storm would react? ;)
Carolyn Harrison
Apr. 4th, 2015 08:05 pm (UTC)
I think the Doctor deserved the punch he got from Jenny. She's understandably upset that her Dad didn't even stay for her funeral, gave her brother away to an immature spoiled brat and then effectively killed her Mum.

Using Jenny, with the help of the TARDIS to fix Donna was brilliant.

Now they just need to find a way to rescue her brother.

I absolutely love it when the Doctor and Donna get married. No matter what the reason is, or how it happens. Having the Doctor's voice go really small when he asked Donna if that was okay was perfect. Then with her teasing him by making him wait for her answer? Priceless!
Apr. 6th, 2015 06:01 pm (UTC)
Yep. It was cathartic to write.

Well, I might or might not get the prompt to do a sequel. We shall see. But you'll be credited for a dedication.

Well, it's part of what makes their dynamic so great! :D
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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