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 five- a second chance
All three of them sat glumly in the console room.
“So. Adam burned down the estate to get back at you?” Mickey asked. “Because of what you did?”
“Looks like it,” said the Doctor. Those were the first words he’d spoken in ages: he hadn’t spoken at all during Rose’s story.
“But…how come he wasn’t caught?” Rose said. She looked like she’d aged years in the past hour or so.
“It’s the year 2038,” the Doctor muttered. “There are new ways to avoid getting caught. There always will be.”
“We have to do something,” Rose whispered. “People died, didn’t they? Who died?” She looked at Mickey.
“I don’t know,” Mickey answered. “Dunno any names. Just…people.”
“I can take you to Adam,” Mickey said. “If you want.”
“No,” the Doctor said firmly.
“Why not?” Rose asked.
“Because he has a gun,” Mickey supplied.
“No, it’s not that he has a gun,” the Doctor said. “It’s that he knows you, Rose. He won’t know me, not anymore, but you’re not going anywhere near him.”
“So…are you?” Mickey asked.
“Yes,” the Doctor muttered. “Just to talk. Just to ask…”
“No,” Rose said fiercely. “Not without me.”
“He could kill you, Rose,” the Doctor said, and Mickey felt a chill go down his spine.
“So? The Daleks could have killed me. Or the Siltheen or the Sycorax or anything. I can handle Adam.”
“No,” the Doctor said, shaking his head. “Humans are…they’re different. No. What I mean is…” His hand went to his head for a second. “What I mean is, to you, humans are more dangerous then anything. Because humans are vicious and cruel and vengeful. No different from the Sycorax, except you haven’t got the hang of space travel just yet. And Adam is a human.”
“Not much of one, with that thing he’s got in his brain,” Mickey muttered, and had a feeling he’d said a stupid thing.
“Rose,” the Doctor said, ignoring Mickey’s comment, “I promised your mum I’d protect you.”
“Yeah, and I promised myself I’d protect you. Ask him!” she said, and pointed at Mickey. “I would’ve died to get back when you sent me away! I didn’t care if I did long as you were all right! This is a big thing, isn’t it?” she went on in a low voice. “This isn’t like…something you can solve easily, like we’ve done so many times. Is it?” she demanded.
All the air seemed to have gone from the room.
“No,” the Doctor whispered.
“Oi, listen,” Mickey said suddenly.
They both looked at him.
“Why don’t you go back to before the estate burned down, and remove the thingy from his head then? Then he doesn’t have any reason to get revenge on you.”
The Doctor sat down on the console.
“Yeah!” Rose said, jumping up. “We have to do that.”
The Doctor said nothing.
“It’s worth a try,” he murmured. “But what time…what time would be right? We can’t screw this up. We have to get this absolutely right.” He looked hard at Mickey as he said that.
“Adam mentioned some dates…”
“He did?” The Doctor jumped up. “That helps. What did he say, Mickey? What did he say?”
Mickey struggled to remember. “He…in…lemme think…in 2023 he told his girlfriend what had happened to him. And she left him later, and she wouldn’t have done if he…hadn’t had that thing in his head in the first place. So if you got to him before he told her anything…”
“Mickey!” the Doctor yelled, making him jump. “You’re a genius!”
“A bloody genius. That makes things a lot easier. Let’s go to 2022!”
“Where are we?” Rose whispered.
“2022. A good time before Adam confesses to his girlfriend. Now listen-”
“I know that,” Rose interupted. “I meant where. Did we land in his house again?”
“Nope. We’re in his back garden. Now listen, Rose…I don’t want you to come meet him. Not until I’ve explained the situation to him. I want you to stay here, alright?”
Rose gave a little sigh. “Alright. But are you sure you’re gonna be alright?”
“I’m the Doctor, Rose!” And he did a weird little dance move which, in any other situation, would have cracked them all up. “And I promise to look after Mickey.”
“And I promise to look after him,” Mickey said, eager to keep the tone of the situation relatively light.
“All right,” Rose said nervously.
The Doctor smiled at her, and then they both left. Mickey was too nervous, really, to smile and pretend it’d be all right, and he hated it.
“Adam has a nice house,” he said hopelessly.
“Yep. Let’s go take a look at it!”
They went to one of the windows.
“What we do,” the Doctor said, “is we make sure his girlfriend isn’t in.”
“Because she can’t find out about Adam’s past. That’s the reason he ended up how he did. You remember? One little thing like that ruins so much. We get Adam alone, chuck him in the TARDIS, take him to Satellite Five, fix his head, and return him to Earth five seconds later, or less. Easy.”
They checked the house thoroughly as they could. They saw Adam through a window- he was watching TV. There was no sign of anyone else.
“Ready, Mickey Smith?” The Doctor asked.
“Ready, Doctor.” It felt so weird to say that.
They went to Adam’s blue front door and the Doctor rung the doorbell. In ten or so seconds, Adam opened the door.
“Yeah?” he asked, looking at both of them in turn. “What d’ya want?”
“Adam Mitchell?” The Doctor asked, and Adam nodded suspiciously. “You don’t know me. But I know you. And I’ve come to help you.”
“When you were nineteen…” Adam suddenly moved to close the door, but the Doctor was faster and he held it open. “When you were nineteen you did something dumb, as nineteen-year-olds do, and I’m going to give you another chance.”
“What?” he said again.
In answer, the Doctor snapped his fingers. Adam let out a little gasp. Out came the creepy mechanical thing-
-and Adam snapped his own fingers and it vanished inside his head again.
“Do you know the Doctor?” Adam demanded breathlessly.
“I do,” the Doctor said brightly.
“You’d better come in. I want to know what’s going on.”
“Is your girlfriend coming back anytime soon?” the Doctor asked. “That’s rather important. She can’t know we’re here.”
Adam looked at him quizzically. “Lauren? She’s not due back until gone five.”
The Doctor stepped into the house after Adam, Mickey following. “All the same,” the Doctor said. “really we need to get you out of the house and to the TARDIS right away. We can’t talk for long, Adam.”
But Adam seemed to want to talk. “I knew you’d come back,” he whispered.
“What?” the Doctor asked.
“You’re the Doctor, aren’t you? You’re an alien, so you can probably change shape. You’re him. And you came back for me.”
“Bit hasty, aren’t you, Adam?” the Doctor said in a friendly tone. “How do you know he’s not the Doctor, for example?” He pointed to Mickey, and grinned.
“Because you are,” Adam said, ignoring Mickey completely. “You are. You came back for me. And I’ve been wanting to kill you for years.”
“Well, you needn’t kill anyone,” the Doctor said smoothly, looking Adam right in the eye. “Like I said- we’ve come to give you a second chance. To get that thing out of your head.”
“Oh yeah. A second chance after ten years.”
“Better late than never,” Mickey spoke up lamely. The Doctor shushed him.
“Adam. You need to come with us. You’re getting a second chance, and you have to take it. Do you want to carry on like this?” He snapped his fingers, and the metal crunched out of skin once more.
But Adam barely noticed that. He just kept on just looking at the Doctor, and suddenly Mickey realised what he was waiting for. For the Doctor to say sorry.
To apologize for what he’d done. Adam had only been nineteen, after all. God, if you were judged forever for what you’d got up to at nineteen…
But Mickey had no chance to voice any of this, because then the door opened.
The entire room froze.
“I got off work early!” called a friendly female voice. “Thought I’d surprise you, love!”
Before anyone could do a thing, a pretty young woman walked into the room. She was slightly plump and blonde, still in her work clothes and holding a white handbag. She was smiling…
…but slowly her expression changed.
“Adam?” she said in a baffled voice. “Who are they? What’s that thing?” She pointed to Adam’s forehead. “Adam? What’s going on?”
Suddenly Mickey had this feeling that everything had gone to hell, and he wanted to run, but he made himself stand his ground.
“Lauren,” Adam whispered. “I have…to explain something.”
“Sure looks like it. What’s that? What’s that in your head?”
“I can explain.” the Doctor said, stepping forward. “But will you believe it? That’s the important thing…”
“Who the hell are you?” Lauren asked, at the same time Adam said, “She won’t believe it…”
Mickey wanted to say something, but he didn’t know what to say.
“And who are you?” Lauren demanded, turning to him.
“Ur, Mickey Smith. Nice to meet you.” He felt monumentally stupid after saying that.
“Lauren. Come into the living room. I’ll tell you everything. You two stay out here.” Adam said fiercely, and they went into the living room and shut the door and what followed was an extremely long ten minutes.
The Doctor explored the kitchen, somewhat halfheartedly.
“Why did you do it?” Mickey asked.
“Leave him on Earth with metal bits in him.”
The Doctor shook his head, and stared out of the window to the back garden.
“Or was it the other you? Well, I know it was, but…does it still count as you? Cos either way…” But he was confusing himself now. “What’d Adam do to deserve that?”
“He was greedy,” the Doctor said, almost to himself. “He was messing about with history.”
“Yeah, and you’ve never done that.”
“I’ve never been greedy.”
Mickey so nearly said, “Well, you were greedy for Rose, technically, weren’t ya?” But he didn’t. And he never would. So instead he said, “You sure?”
“Adam lied and stole and got us in trouble. That’s what happened.” He was reaching into one of the cupboards, and taking out a jar of coffee.
“Don’t steal his bloody coffee!”
“I’m not, Ricky. I’m looking at the label.”
“Ha. You called me Ricky. That means you’re mad at me.”
“Slip of the tongue.”
He put the coffee back. At that moment, the door of the living room opened, and Lauren came out, crying a bit.
“Lauren-” Adam yelled after her, sliding on the floor in his hurry. “Lauren, listen.”
“You never told me!” Lauren shouted at him.
“I was gonna tell you, eventually!”
“This was an awful way to find out, Adam. You’d been lying. I hate lying.”
“Goodbye, Adam,” Lauren said bitterly. “My dad will come to pick up my things, sometime. Goodbye.”
But she left, and slammed the door.
Adam paused for a moment, staring at the door. Then, eyes hard, he turned to the Doctor and Mickey.
“You did this,” he whispered. “If you’d never turned up…I was doing fine…you bastard.”
“Adam,” the Doctor said calmly.
“We were trying to help.” Mickey added.
“You bastard! Every time you turn up, something bad happens! You ever notice that? I know about you,” he whispered. “I saw a website once. Listed everything you ever did. You’ve destroyed hundreds of lives, and destroyed mine twice. I was going to tell her! Without your involvement!”
“You can still come with us,” the Doctor said, a note of fear in his voice. “You can still come and we can remove the device, and-”
“And what? I’ve lost everything already. And now I’ve lost Lauren, because of you!”
Mickey wasn’t sure what happened after that. All he knew was that the Doctor yelled to run, and he did, and they got out by breaking a window and getting out to the back garden and into the TARDIS, and Rose stuck her head out at hearing them running across the lawn, and Adam was chasing and he saw her-
“Rose! You’re still with him! I’ll get you too! You did this as well! You and him!”
Then they were gone from the garden, and everything was still.