Title: Book and Bell
Disclaimer: I own nothing. I guess Summer counts as semi-original, so I own her, but nothing else.
Everyone had well learned, or at least gleaned from conversation, that traveling with the Doctor had certain elements involved; danger, fear, and an utter inability to predict the next moments were given - not to mention a very good deal of running - however no one had quite expected to journey to 'Somewhere' in 'Sometime'. It was quickly becoming obvious that although the TARDIS was fabulous at informing them of the when-and-wheres of her own universe, she was decidedly less talented when it came to alternate worlds.
The Doctor in fact seemed quite offended that the ship refused to give more details. Though they had all taken the time to find their rooms and return, clean and well-clothed, they still felt utterly unprepared for the world outside. That thought had perked him up considerably, much to the chagrin of the others.
It was accepted that a situation which excited the Doctor was very likely a bad situation.
He seemed determined to approach the castle, and they accepted the inevitable. Luckily the time they had spent cleaning off their previous adventure had also allowed the sun to fully rise – approaching a gloomy castle in the light of day was terrifying enough, as Rose pointed out. No one had wanted to go it in the dark.
His expression seemed to become more animated as they neared – which set off very large alarm bells in Donna's head.
"Why are you so frickin' happy?" Summer groused, kicking the dirt.
The Doctor's face nearly split in two from his smile. "Why shouldn't I be?" As if to punctuate his point, he reached out a hand and Rose's slid into it naturally.
Donna and Summer exchanged looks of distaste as the other two skipped ahead a few feet.
"Seriously, what's with him and the hand-holding?" Summer whispered to the redhead. "Rose said he does it all the time."
Donna shrugged. "He's just a great big girl I suppose. Likes getting hugs and hand-holding all day long." They heard a shout of objection from him, and both smirked.
Rose giggled loudly and squeezed the Doctor's hand. "You are a bit of a girl this time 'round," she agreed. "With all the gabbin' and touchy-feely bits." She grinned. "The last version was no better, still fond of holding hands."
"Not just any hands Rose," he smiled at her and pulled her closer. "Still can't believe it, things never turn out this well for me."
Rose beamed. "Sure they do, sometimes. Everybody lives Doctor, just this once."
He reached for her other hand. "Is this the part where we dance again? I seem to recall that being the next part."
"Well you were a rubbish partner," she shrugged, her eyes laughing. "You got a bit better at not pulling my arm up, but Jack was still better than both of us together."
"Ah wasn't that always the case," he grinned a bit manically. "We had some fantastic times there!"
Rose's face dropped a bit and she looked to the sky, releasing his fingers to rub her arms against the chill night air. He frowned at her for a moment then removed his coat and placed it over her shoulders. She blinked up at him and let out a breath. "Sorry," she murmured. "I drifted for a second, thinking about Jack. I do miss him, I'd like to go back and bring him with us, if we get the chance."
The Doctor was already shaking his head. "Jack cannot travel in the TARDIS," he stated firmly. "He's just...wrong, I can't have it."
"Why?" The question came from Summer, still walking just behind them.
"Well," he looked around frantically, obviously seeking a distraction. "Oh look! Something that's, er, shiny!" He pointed in a random direction.
"What?" Rose followed his arm and saw nothing. "What are you – I'm not that much of a stupid ape, thank you Doctor! What were you saying?"
"What do you mean?" He was a picture of innocence. "I was looking at something, obviously ape eyes can't see it..."
"Time Lord eyes here, you're full of shit," Summer called up.
"Not helping," he hissed over his shoulder.
"Friends with her, not you," she said back, sing-song.
"I'm beginning to not like you," he replied with a frown. "As a wise woman once told me – don't argue with the designated driver."
"I could fly your thing if I really had do," she pointed out. "You're not the only one TARDIS trained anymore, even if it is incredibly archaic."
"And that there is one of many, many reason you'll never ever touch her controls," he frowned. "No one insults the TARDIS. Especially not an idiot child."
Summer sulked. "I do remember going to the Academy you know," she pointed out sourly, scuffing her feet in the dirt. "I mean, I didn't go for long, but I went for four years. I at least know more than these..." she paused for a good word and was promptly interrupted.
"Right! So!" He was ignoring her now, and with enthusiasm. "We're at the door! Door of a very large castle apparently, guessing somewhere in the UK, maybe Scotland? Right, not important, let's just knock and see who opens up eh?" He lifted a fist and rapped soundly on the heavy wooden door.
He shoved his hands in his pockets and rocked a bit on the edge of his shoes. "Exciting isn't it?" He glanced at the girls, and received only stares of mild irritation in response. "Well, you lot are grumpy," he muttered to himself, looking back at the door.
"Might have liked a bit of sleep before coming up here," Donna pointed out waving her finger at his back. "Been a tough day for everyone, and you drag us off gallivanting again."
Rose shrugged and laced her arm through the Doctor's. "Sorry," she said quietly. "Got lost in my thoughts a bit."
He smiled and pulled nudged his head against hers. "Thoughts are a scary place to lose yourself in," he pointed out. "Always be cautious about thinking too much. Bad for the health."
"Says the man who calls us stupid lazy apes all the time," Rose shoved him a bit, then frowned at the door. "Oy, isn't anyone in there?" She reached out and picked up the knocker, then slammed it down a few times. There was a half a moment's pause, and then the door swung open.
A tallish man with a long silver beard peered out at them, holding a candle above his head. A small pair of spectacles sat on the bridge of his nose, the aged dignity of which were strongly contrasted by the vibrantly purple crescent pajamas he wore.
The Doctor stepped back, tilting his head to the side curiously. His own glasses came out and he leaned forward, staring at the old man. His eyebrows raised and he shook his head slowly, smiling wide. "Oh, that's just brilliant!" He tilted his head the other way and then pulled back. "Terrible, possibly, might disrupt what little stability we've got now, certainly have to run in a minute, but positively brilliant!"
The old man smiled back, and held out a bag. "Would you like a jelly baby?" He asked kindly.
The Doctor's jaw dropped and then closed, he repeated the motion a few times before nodding eagerly. "I would love a jelly baby!" He reached in and snatched one, tossing it in his mouth and chewing with an expression of pure ecstasy. "Always wanted to meet you," he said, still chewing. "So glad you've got such good taste in candy."
Summer leaned forward, looking between the old man and the Doctor. "Am I going crazy?"
"Going indicates not being there yet, so no." He grinned.
She shoved his shoulder. "Are we in..." she lowered her voice. "Scotland?"
"That would be correct," the old man informed her, his eyes twinkling merrily. "You are at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, I'm Albus Dumbledore, the headmaster."
"Oh my god," Summer's eyes had gone wide. She took in the dress and then stepped back. "Oh my god! Doctor! You can see the Quidditch pitch! You didn't tell me we could enter into fi-"
"Fantastic places like this? Fascinating I know," he cut her off with a momentary glare before returning to the professor with a wide grin. "We were just popping round out of curiosity...checking to make sure you haven't any new and unusual problems that might need solving..." He rocked on the edge of his shoes again, a hopeful expression on his face.
"I'm afraid nothing which can be solved at the moment," Dumbledore's voice softened sadly. "The school is in mourning, at the moment. We've lost a student this week. Perhaps you would enjoy a bit of pumpkin juice however, before you head on your way?"
"Lost a student?" Donna sounded nervous. "Misplaced?"
"A young man was killed," he sounded ever more sorrowful. "Cedric Diggory."
"Doctor, it's the Goblet of Fire," Summer hissed in his ear. "We're in that one!"
"Yes I know," he hissed back, before pressing his index finger over her lips. "Now, I heard mention of pumpkin juice?"
The Doctor war entirely too enthused by meeting the Headmaster. He'd convinced the older man – who was in fact a good seven or eight centuries younger than him – to allow him a look at his wand. He'd proceeded, naturally, to run the sonic screwdriver over it in about fifteen different settings.
"Truly, marvelous piece of technology," the Doctor muttered, holding the stick of wood at eye level and running his fingers along it. "It's amazing how concentrated it is. Fantastic energy sources needed."
"It's not technology," Summer scowled. "It's magic."
"Children are seen and not heard!" The Doctor huffed at her a bit. He regretted this a moment later, as everyone who had arrived in a TARDIS turned to glance at Rose – clearly the youngest of the lot. He smiled nervously, and then his face fell as she glared at him in response. "Speaking of course only in terms of ratios, lifespan to current age and all that!" He grinned again, and 'accidentally' pushed Summer from the end of the table. She landed on the tile of the kitchen floor with an oomph, and a glare aimed at his head. He turned back to the Headmaster with little further attention being paid to the young girl. "Well, as much as I appreciate the jelly babies, and the juice, we had probably best be off, long way yet to go," he smiled charmingly. "Best of luck, all that."
The Doctor shook Dumbledore's hand warmly as they left by the same door, grinning widely. "It's just been too fantastic for words."
The silver-haired man smiled broadly. "I did not think anything could make me find joy during these dark times, but your visit was a pleasure."
They all waved a bit as they began to walk back down the hill – and Summer felt the need to open her mouth again. "Tell Sirius to keep away from creepy looking curtains! And don't wear the - mmph!" The Doctor waved with his free hand, even as the other one was slapped tightly over the young girl's mouth. She bit him, and he squeaked in response as he let her loose.
"Their reality is fixed," he informed her firmly, being sure she faced away from the castle. "This power is not to be abused."
"But I hated book seven!" Summer whined. "We could totally make it better. Ugh, maybe I could make Harry not end up with Ginny."
The Doctor narrowed his eyes as they began the trek back to the TARDIS. "What have you got against Ginny? It works out nicely."
"Well it's more the other way around, Ginny's just full of awesome and Harry is such a...self-important prick."
Donna and Rose fell behind a bit as the Time Lords argued over the merits and flaws of the cast. "So," Donna began. "Just to clear up, we are following two aliens around, back to their space ship-slash-time machine in order to hop through dimensions...and listening to them be nerdy about Harry Potter. Right?"
"In front of Hogwarts no less," Rose added, glancing over her shoulder.
"Our lives are too weird for words."
Rose frowned suddenly, and her eyes went wide. "Oy!" The Doctor began to walk faster ahead of them. "Oy, what were you telling me earlier about Jack? Doctor?" She sped up her pace and suddenly they were running again. Even if he wasn't used to running from
Rose...it was still the most natural conclusion to any adventure.
Back in the doorway Dumbledore chewed a jelly baby thoughtfully. "It was good to see you again, Doctor," he said softly. He glanced upward, as if he could see straight through to his room. "I think tonight I'll go remember your future visits."
AN: I would love some suggestions on where they should go next...(even hints on how they might help in various universes!) I've got a few planned out, but I'm always open to ideas.