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Doctor Who Internet Adventure #29 - "Destiny Rules"


Chapter 4
"Faithfull"
by Aron Toman


---


Lachesis is a fool. A complete fruitcake even, to use the local vernacular of this backwater rock, certifiably insane. It's not that she thinks she can outwit me - that's nothing, almost expected when it comes to dealings with myself - but that she's so bloody cocky about doing it. She knows who I am. What I am. To go to such ... lengths to do something about it. If it wasn't so depressing, it would be funny.


       She'd do it too, or try to at least. Kill every last one of them — well, as many as she thought there were, she'd likely confused that too. Just like she'd confused her latest target. She thinks that he's another one of them. He's not. She thinks he was involved with what happened. He isn't. He hasn't got a clue what she's doing and why she's doing it and even how she'll go about it. Which is the really depressing part.


       He's going to die by her hand, and he won't have a clue about it. Believe me, I know these things.


* * *


"Snap!"


       "I'm not playing 'Snap' with you, Rose."


       Rose picked up her new pile of the cards and pushed them to one side and placed another card in the middle of the table. "You're being boring again, Doctor. I thought we talked about this."


       The Doctor gave her a Look. "I'm boring because I won't play games with a piece of evidence in a case where some oh-so-charming teleporting murderess has tried to kill me?"


       Rose nodded, her face breaking into a grin. "Dull as dishwater, Doc."


       "Don't call me Doc."


       "Sorry. Snap!"


       "Stop that," said the Doctor. He leant back on the café chair. "What's this desire to play 'Snap' for anyway?"


       "Because I want to?"


       "That's not funny."


       Rose grinned a bit more, then shrugged. "It's taking bloody forever for the coffee to get here. What are they doing, waiting for the coffee plants to grow?"


       "I believe someone famous said patience was a virtue."


       "Ooh!" Rose's eyes lit up. "Patience is a card game, too! Wanna play?"


       "It's solitaire."


       "Oh, everyone likes playing solitaire. Even with groups of people."


       The Doctor's eyes started rolling as Rose swept up the cards into one pile and started shuffling them. As she began to lay out the cards, he decided to add, "you know, I really think that's not the best use for such a mysterious object."


       "They're cards," said Rose, moving a Jack onto a Queen. "How dangerous could they be?"


       Before the Doctor could tell her exactly how dangerous they could have been, he felt a tap on the shoulder.


       "Your coffee, sir?"


       Something about the voice made the Doctor doubt that. He looked up, and standing next to him was a familiar female figure. Wielding a sword.


       "Hello, you're back I see?" said the Doctor, not batting an eyelid.


       Lachesis stood there equally cool. "Are you ready?"


       "For coffee?" The Doctor finally turned to face her, a broad grin on his face. "I'll have mine white, Rose likes short blacks, don't you Rose?"


       "Umm, yeah. Occasionally." Rose didn't quite see the humour of the situation.


       Neither did Lachesis. Her face still impassive, she raised her sword high in the air, and swung it, slicing through the Doctor's neck.


       Except by then the Doctor wasn't there. The empty chair toppled over as the sword collided with it, just as Rose's tipped onto its back, as if its occupant had been suddenly dragged out of it without warning or probably her consent. Lachesis's previously blank face switched to an expression of irritation.


       "Very good," she muttered. "Very amusing."


       And she sliced the chair into tiny pieces. Just because she could.


* * *


Rose eventually got the Doctor to stop dragging her through the streets of New York to ask what she had just decided was the most important question of the universe.


       "Did you really have to drag my arm out of my socket?"


       The Doctor wasn't even out of breath. It was frustrating. He looked around him, all sense of humour gone. "She's not going to give up, is she? She's still trying to kill me. Chasing me around the city like a ... a..." He floundered for a metaphor.


       "Honey to the bee?"


       The Doctor raised an eyebrow.


       "Well what's the answer then?" Rose continued. "You're meant to be the big, powerful, Time Lord type person, aren't you?"


       The Doctor shook his head. "Keep running, I suppose. She has a vendetta against me - well, against Time Lords in general, from what I can gather. If only it wasn't going to effect the innocents around me..."


       "Like our favourite Detective May?"


       The Doctor nodded. "And others. Trying to contain someone like ... whatever Lachesis is like -"


       "What?"


       "That's her name, Lachesis."


       "Ahh..."


       "But our little pet detective and his merry band of police officers are likely to get themselves killed, plus about a zillion bystanders in trying to contain her."


       Rose snorted. "Well, they are Americans."


       "Rose, don't be xenophobic." The Doctor sighed. "It's no use. I'll have to take it off-planet. Somewhere a bit remote where I can deal with her."


       "So, back to the TARDIS?"


       The Doctor nodded. "Back to the TARDIS. And lets hope that Lachesis doesn't meet us on the way. I'm getting sick of ducking that sword of hers."


       "Do we have to run?" asked Rose, thinking or her yanked-out arm and sore feet.


       The Doctor pointed. "Look over there."


       Rose squinted across the busy traffic-filled street to where the Doctor had gestured. Amongst a crowd stood the familiar, sword holding figure of Lachesis, her face less impassive and more pissed off.


       Rose sighed. "We're running, aren't we?"


       The Doctor smiled. "Think how fit you'll be when we're done. So, on the count of three then." He paused. "Three!"


       And they ran. And Rose had gotten half a block before she'd realised the Doctor had gone the wrong way. "Doctor! She called. "TARDIS this way?"


       Eventually he caught up with her.


* * *


May sat at his desk, feeling somewhat pissed off at the paperwork that had been so unceremoniously dumped on his desk. To loose a victim twice was starting to resemble carelessness his superiors were thinking. At least he assumed they were thinking that. Nobody had said anything, but he knew. It was all in the eyes.


       He was avoiding filling out most of the forms. After the events of that morning, he was half expecting the guy to come back. Third time's the charm and all that. Waiting for the autopsy felt like the safest bet — if he's going to come back, he'd better do so after some medical examiner had pulled him apart and stitched him back together again. Unless he could do so even after that. He wouldn't know, would he? Was it possible?


       May dropped his head on the table and moaned. Some days it didn't pay to get out of bed.


       His melancholic diversion was suddenly rudely interrupted by a phone ringing on the desk. Summoning up the emotional energy to drag himself back to work, he grabbed the phone and limply held it to his ear.


       "May, talk to me."


       He waited for a moment, listening to the report on the other end. His eyes started to widen.


       "He's walked into a *what*? And then it did *what*!"


* * *


"What flavour do you want, Doctor?"


       "Put the ice-cream away, Rose, we won't be here that long."


       Rose began whining. "You've taken me away from my coffee, now you're denying me my ice cream as well?"


       "You'll get fat" the Doctor retorted. He was standing at the console flicking through the database. "Metabelis, Metila-Orionsis, Nortella, Nugent--"


       "Nugent?"


       "Lovely world. Oceans of yoghurt, very tasty."


       Rose grinned and marched over to the console. "Ooh, lets go there. You can wrestle our psycho warrior princess in some dairy goodness."


       "Thanks, but no thanks." The Doctor pressed a button and moved on to the 'O's. "Ideally I want a world with some allies, someone who could help me deal with this charming lady properly."


       "Not the ham-fisted way May would have?"


       The Doctor smiled. "You really didn't like him, did you?"


       Rose shrugged. "He locked you up. My favourite people distinctly don't do that."


       "He did let me go again."


       "Eventually."


       The Doctor grinned and continued reading. "Pendor, Praxis, Preston, Putonia, Pzetu--"


       "Oh!" said Rose suddenly, reaching into her pocket. "Forgot about these cards. Want them back?"


       The Doctor shook his head. "Not now, I'm concentrating."


       "What do you want me to do with them then? I'm not carrying them for you."


       "Pop them on the console, I'll get to them later."


       Rose shrugged and put the cards on the top of the rising and falling central column. "Fine. They were just so important about twenty minutes ago, but if you're not interested, fine, they can sit there for - what's wrong?"


       The Doctor had looked up from the database and was now moving around the console to the co-ordinate entry panel. "Did you reset the co-ordinates?"


       Rose laughed. "I can't get my mobile phone to stop flashing twelve o'clock, Doctor."


       "Someone has. We're landing... Earth? Again?"


       A chime rang out and the central column stopped moving. Both the Doctor and Rose stood in silence for a moment.


       "I don't like this" the Doctor said eventually. "But something tells me this something we'll have to go through."


       "Well, we could always take off" said Rose. "Find that abandoned planet you were looking for or whatever?"


       The Doctor shook his head. "I think our answers lie wherever we've landed. We have to go out there."


       "It's fate? Destiny?"


       The Doctor turned to her. "Don't even joke about that."


* * *


The boy stood at the fence, peering through the cracks at the other kids. School hadn't started yet, the doors were still yet to be unlocked as teachers arrived to quickly rush into the staff room. The early kids had to make do with entertaining themselves. Many of these kids were playing on skateboards. Showing each other tricks they'd learnt over the weekend, seeing how often they could fall down and laugh.


       This one boy, though, watched through the fence. He wouldn't show his face — he daren't. The other kids really didn't like him. Really thought he was someone to ridicule and upset. Even though he would have loved more than anything to join in with the other skateboarding boys. To play.


       Yet still he watched, through the fence.


       Behind him he felt a disturbance. A noise he could only define as a wheezing groaning sound of some kind. He refused to turn around — little Brenton in the yard with the funny nose was about to attempt a complicated trick.


       He heard voices behind him. A man and a woman. British of some kind, although their accents were different. Different parts of England then. They were chatting.


       "It's a school" said the girl. "How, well, anticlimactic."


       "The TARDIS brought us here for a reason" said the man. "And if you say the D-word again, I'll get cranky. Umm, excuse me?"


       The last sentence was directed at the boy. He thought about turning around, but decided to wait a moment. Brenton was mounting his skateboard.


       "Could you tell us were we are, please?" asked the girl. "We're, umm, lost."


       The boy sighed. He was probably going to miss the big event. But he turned around to face the two time travellers.


       "Doctor. Rose. Glad you could come, I've been expecting you," he told them. Naturally they were dumbstruck.


       "Umm, I'm sorry?" the Doctor finally said.


       "Oh" said the boy. "No, I'm sorry, I haven't introduced myself. My name's Fate. How are you?"


---
To be continued...



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