Title: Go Home
Characters: Mickey, Ten, Rose, Jackie, Adam
Summary: In the year 2006, Mickey Smith asks Rose and the Doctor if he can come with them and they say yes. In the year 2012, Adam Mitchell asks Rose and the Doctor not to leave him on Earth with a metal chip in his head and they say no. In the year 2038, someone steps out of a time machine into the burned wreckage of the Powell Estate…
chapter four- metal and blood
Mickey walked away from Sam, who had retreated into his tent. He felt giddy. Sick. Terrified. What was he going to do now? Go back to the TARDIS, or carry on and find this Cyberman? Where was Rose? Was she running about looking for him right this minute?
He kept going over that conversation with Sam, and he was disturbed to realize that he was proud of himself. Proud of himself for being able to do that, to invent a stupid story about really being his own son and somehow keep it all straight, to actually get some real information. He’d done it himself, without the Doctor or Rose. And without going to pieces- and hell, if all this wasn’t a good excuse for going to pieces, what was? He felt like he’d proved something to himself.
He wandered on. He passed countless places that had meant things to him, and it was horrible, seeing them all dead. The swings. The bit kids used to use for skateboard stunts. The pointless and rather dangerous hole tucked away near one of the buildings, hidden in the grass- in fact, that hole was still there. The residents of the estate had called it the Useless Hole.
He went forward and had a look. So all this time and no-one had filled it in. It was stupid. A grown man could easily fall in that hole and get stuck in there.
Still, no-one lived here anymore. Or not many.
He knew why he was remembering the Useless Hole, and he put it out of his mind.
In the middle of these thoughts, he suddenly saw another tent tucked away in a corner. A proper tent this time, a clean one. Someone else was here.
He paused and went towards it. Whoever it was, he’d be able to ask them questions, and that was something.
“Hello?” he called.
There was no answer, but he didn’t want to leave.
“Hello? Anyone in there? I want to talk to you.”
Suddenly the flap of the tent shot open and Mickey found himself with a gun in his face. He had never had a gun in his face before, and he was terrified.
“Don’t shoot! Please! I’m sorry! I just had questions!” When the gun didn’t go away he hastily backtracked. “I’ll leave, alright? Just please don’t shoot!”
The gun was moved away, and Mickey got up, grateful beyond belief. His heart was still beating.
“Right! I’m sorry. I’ll go.”
“You said you had questions.”
The man holding the gun put the gun down, and Mickey got a good look at him. He had black hair- very messy black hair. But otherwise he was a lot cleaner then Sam had been. He was taking care of himself.
“Um. Yeah. I do.” He realised he was shaking a bit. “Why did you point a gun at me?”
The man didn’t give an answer. “What questions do you have?”
“I ran into a bloke called Sam. He said to talk to the Cyberman. What is he? D’ya know where I can find him?”
The man smirked. “Is that all?”
“No. What happened? What happened to the estate? People died, didn’t they? What happened?”
The man laughed a bit to himself, and shook his head. “Which question do you want first?”
“First one, then. Snap your fingers.”
“Snap your fingers.”
Mickey snapped his fingers. The man gave a sort of insane grin, and his forehead opened up and rusty machinery came out of the hole. The metal was disfigured enough to scratch the man’s skin and make him draw blood. Blood dribbled down his face.
Mickey’s breath caught in his throat.
“Ugh.” He couldn’t help it. He was staring, fascinated and revolted. “What the hell is that?”
The man shook his head, but then he smiled like the devil.
“This little thing? The result of teenage foolishness. In 2012,” he said quietly, wiping the blood off his face with the back of his hand, “it lost me the respect of my parents, and in 2023 it lost me the woman I loved, when I was stupid enough to think she ought to know the stupidest thing I ever did. In 2025 she finally left me for good and I never saw her again. I watch the time,” he said in a whisper. “I remember the year 200000.”
He trailed off and Mickey was scared again.
“What was your other question? What happened here?” the man went on.
“Yeah. What happened here?” He REMEMBERS the year 200000?
“It burned down.”
“Yeah, I know,” Mickey said in frustration. “Who did it?”
“How do you know anyone did it?”
“Sam said it was arson.”
“Ah, you’ve been talking to Sam, then? How do you know he didn’t do it? Just because he says so?”
Mickey decided to try something else. “What’s your name?”
But the man only smiled and said nothing.
“How’d you get that thing in your head? That’s why they call you the Cyberman, isn’t it?”
Still nothing, so Mickey walked away. And then he remembered the gun, so he started running instead. He didn’t dare look back, but he looked around, and remembered all the places around here where he’d played football or eaten his lunch or…
He almost ran into Rose. A crying Rose.
“What happened?” she sobbed, and he tried to put his arms around her but she pushed him away. “What happened? Are they dead?”
The Doctor then came into view, and much to Mickey’s relief, he took over.
“Rose. Come on.” He took her hand. “You can’t stay out here.”
Rose said nothing else, and the three of them returned to the TARDIS. Rose sat down in the console room, and the Doctor went into the corridor and returned in only a second or two, with tea.
“Here, Rose.” He gave it to her, but she didn’t drink it.
“Doctor, it’s going to be alright isn’t it?” she pleaded. “Oh God, please say there’s a way to change that. That was 2038, wasn’t it? It’s not like something way, way off in the future…not like the end of the world…” She shook her head franctically. “My mum…”
The room was silent, and Mickey realised with surprise that the Doctor was looking at him, waiting for him to say something.
“Oh. Rose, Jackie’s alright.”
“What?” Rose breathed a sigh of relief. “She is? You’re sure, Mickey?”
“Yeah. I asked someone if they knew what happened to her, and they said she moved out before the fire happened.”
“Oh, thank God.” Rose whispered.
“And Shireen’s alright too.”
“Thanks so much, Mickey.” She got up and hugged him like she’d never hugged him before, and he hugged back.
“Now,” the Doctor said, once they’d broken apart, “time we got to the bottom of this. Mickey, you need to tell us everything you saw and heard.”
Rose drank her tea while Mickey talked.
“I met this bloke called Sam. I used to know him a little bit. Anyway, I didn’t tell him my real name, and he told me that the fire was arson, and I should go and talk to the Cyberman.”
The Doctor sat bolt upright.
“Is that what he said?” he said in a level, determined voice, and ran for the door.
“Wait!” Rose yelled. “Don’t go back out there!”
The Doctor stopped. “Sorry, Rose,” he said. “But if…I don’t want to think about it…it’s impossible…” He was pale.
“Can’t you let me finish?” Mickey said. “It was just this man…”
“Just this man?”
“Yeah. He was the Cyberman…’cos he had this cyber-thing in his head…”
Rose gasped and nearly dropped her cup of tea. And the Doctor just froze. He looked…scared. Mickey stared at him- he couldn’t be scared, that was stupid. That meant the entire world had just turned upside down. How could he be scared?
Why was he scared?
“Oh my god,” Rose said. And again. “Oh my God.”
“Something to do with you, huh?” Mickey asked. He wasn’t surprised. “He told me to snap my fingers and his head opened up. It was horrible.”
The Doctor glanced around as if he didn’t know which way to turn, what to do.
“Adam Mitchell,” Rose whispered.
“Yes, Rose. Adam Mitchell,” the Doctor answered. He shook his head.
“Did he…did he do this?” Rose asked, sounding close to tears. “Mickey? Did he do this?”
“I don’t know. He sort of said it might have been Sam, but Sam says he didn’t do it. And he was sort of insane…he pointed a gun at me and stuff. Um…how d’you know him?”
And Rose told him.