Jumping Through Reality
Rose walked up to the flat. 221 Baker Street. Two soldiers stood outside keeping any onlookers away. The soldier on the left stepped toward her. She recognized him from a previous assignment. Aaron Tagart.
"Director Tyler is waiting inside," Aaron said.
"Thanks," she replied before stepping through the door.
"Up the stairs," he called when she hesitated, looking around.
She walked up the stairs and greeted another soldier before stepping through the open door of 221B. So, this is the famous flat? She glanced around as she crossed the room. It looked like an ordinary flat. She'd expected…a tour guide? Maybe. Wax figures? Something that indicated that this was more than just another flat. Either the books didn't take off there or they didn't exist.
"Over here," Pete called.
He was standing at the far end if the room. The glowing crack was above the sofa. It was at least two feet wide. There was a strange gold light emanating from it.
"Has it gotten any bigger?" she asked.
"Not since we've been here." Pete said, "What is it?"
"Not sure yet," Rose dug the sonic out of her pocket. "But this should tell us."
She pointed the screwdriver at the crack and pushed the button. It emitted the familiar warble, but at that moment the crack began to slowly open.
"That's not good," she said, taking a step back.
"What did you do?" Pete demanded.
"Nothing I…" she looked at the reading. It was bad. Really bad.
"What is it?"
That couldn't be right.
"It's…it can't be."
Pete leaned over her shoulder, but she knew he wouldn't understand the readings even if he saw them. She only understood them because she'd seen the Doctor use it so often and James had explained some of the readings to her.
"It's a crack…in reality."
"What the hell does that mean?"
"It's a crack in the universe."
"Can you close it?"
It was like the crack that the TARDIS fell through when she landed on the parallel world with Mickey and the Doctor. Like the one the Doctor brought her back through when he left her on that beach. Only it was different. He sealed those cracks with the TARDIS by using the energy of the Time Vortex, but she didn't have a TARDIS. James was going to grow one, but he died before he could.
"I…" she trailed off, watching the crack slowly open.
If it opened all the way it could tear a hole in the universe. It could kill all of them. There had to be a way to close it. If she pointed the sonic at it again that might work, but then it might rip it open. What would the Doctor do? He'd use the TARDIS, but she didn't have one. What else could she use? Wait. She'd been in the Time Vortex. Hell, she'd had the energy of the Time Vortex inside her head. That's how she saved that Dalek. It was like background radiation.
"It's getting bigger," Pete warned.
It had only been open a few inches when she got there, but now it was…the sofa vanished. There was only one option. She wasn't sure if it would work, but at least she wouldn't be around to see it fail if it did.
"I can close it," she said.
"With the sonic?"
She faced her dad and pulled him into a hug.
"What are you doing?" he asked, confused.
She pulled back and looked into his eyes.
"I love you. Tell mum and Tony I love them too."
"Rose, what are you-"
She turned around, hoping he wouldn't figure out what she was doing until it was too late. If he stopped her they'd die. All of them. She gripped the sonic tightly and jumped into the crack.
She had to squeeze her eyes shut because the light was too bright. There was a tug and then she felt as if her insides were being twisted. It didn't hurt, but it felt…very strange. Then she was falling, not far, but she landed, hard, on something wooden. It broke under her weight.
"John? Is that you?" a man called.
She opened her eyes, but the room shimmered as if she was looking through a heat wave. She wasn't sure if it was from traveling through the crack or if she hit her head when she fell. Footsteps brought her attention to the right, but she couldn't make out much more than a fuzzy shape. Blue. The shape was wearing something blue. Pete? No, her dad hadn't been wearing blue.
"How…?" the man asked, trailing off as if he was trying to come up with the answer himself. Reminiscent of the Doctor, but he couldn't be…could he?
She shook her head, hoping to clear it. The room came into focus slowly. She sat up. Side table. That's what she landed on. Now nothing more than firewood.
The man was standing a few feet from her, looking at her as if he wasn't sure what to make of her. I did just land in his living room and smash his side table. She gazed around the room. It was eerily similar to the flat she just…left? Was that the right word? For lack of a better one left would do.
"How…?" the man asked again.
He was looking around the room now with a bit of pacing thrown in. She knew he was trying to figure out how she got there. No concern over the side table. No concern for her. Just how. One track mind.
"I could use a little help," she said.
He didn't even glance at her. He was still trying to work out the how. Probably hadn't heard her. She'd dealt with that before. When the Doctor tried to work something out a bomb could go off and he'd have no idea.
"Where…?" he asked, still pacing.
"221B Baker Street?" she asked.
He stopped. Mid-pace. His eyes snapped to her. His gaze was intense, seeming to calculate every aspect of her.
"Mind giving me a bit of help?"
He stood there a moment and she wasn't sure if he was going to help her or not. Then he closed the distance between them and reached his hand out. There was another moment of hesitation, as if he wasn't sure he wanted to touch her, then he took her hand and helped her up. She swayed, grabbing the back of his arm for support. He stiffened, again reminding her of the Doctor.
He wasn't, of course. The Doctor would've recognized her and this bloke was…well, he could've regenerated. He was a bit lanky, like the Doctor, but he had pale skin and dark, wavy hair and his eyes. She gazed into his eyes. Eyes she thought were blue, but on closer inspection they were…green? No. Hazel? Not hardly. They were blue like the sky, but laced with gold.
He shifted and she could almost feel his discomfort. No, he wasn't the Doctor. His eyes were similar, in a way, haunted and calculating, but they weren't the same.
"You…" his voice came out low. He cleared his throat.
At that moment the door opened and another man entered the flat. He was a bit shorter with sandy hair. They both turned toward the sound.
"What are you…?" the other man asked.
He glanced between them and then at the broken side table.
"John. Thank God," the man said.
"Who's this?" John asked.
Rose was about to introduce herself, but she was cut off before she could start.
"She landed on the side table."
"She…what?" John crossed the room quickly, as quickly as someone with a slight limp can. He started checking her over. Now this one was reminding her of the Doctor. Stop. You have to stop. "Are you alright?"
"I'm fine." She let him feel her head. "Really. I'm fine."
"What did you do?" John snapped, eyeing the other man.
"What did I do?"
He seemed ruffled, indignant.
"Yes," John insisted.
"I didn't do anything."
"Then how did this…" He indicated the broken side table. "…happen?"
"She landed on it."
John glanced from the man to the side table as if he was trying to work out exactly how that happened.
"And how did she come to land on the side table?"
"She…" The man glanced from Rose to the side table. "…she…here." He practically shoved her at John. "Sit her on the sofa."
She was just about fed up with his nonsense. She thought about giving him a Jackie Tyler slap then she swayed. Maybe later.
"Whoa," John said, putting his arm around her to steady her. "I think Sherlock's right. You should sit down."
"Sherlock?" she asked, almost laughing.
"Something funny?" the man asked.
He was sitting in the chair slumped back with his legs crossed. His head resting on his hand as he eyed her with that calculating stare.
"What's your last name then? Holmes?" she laughed.
It was a bit funny…no more strange than funny, but she couldn't help laughing.
"Yes," he replied, flatly.
She felt a giggle form in her throat. She was about to lose it and not in a good way, but she held back.
"And you must be Dr. Watson I presume?" she asked, slamming her lips together to keep from laughing.
"Um…y-yes. John Watson and I am a doctor, an army doctor."
That was it. The last straw. She snorted and then started laughing and not light laughter either. The grab your sides, double over laughter. Tears ran down her cheeks. She couldn't help it, couldn't stop it. It wasn't just jumping through a timey wimey crack and landing in a flat occupied by two fictional characters, characters who weren't fictional on this parallel world. It was everything. The Doctor, losing James, losing the rest of her family, because she'd jumped through a crack, a crack that was now gone and she had no way to get back to them. It was all of that and more. If she hadn't been laughing she was sure she'd be crying, but Rose Tyler wasn't the nineteen year old shop girl who traveled with the Doctor. That girl had been gone for a long time.
"Are you alright?" John asked, which only made her laugh harder.
Thank you to all my brilliant readers! Reviews are welcome and appreciated. :)