Girl From Gallifrey, Part I
See first chapter for disclaimer.
A/N: I know it's been a while since I updated. Anything. I have been having so much trouble with this chapter, it was supposed to be longer but it works as a two-parter a bit better. Since I'm finally happy with part I you guys get to read it while I work on part II.
The TARDIS jolted, throwing Blissa off her feet. She grabbed for the rail around its core, holding on until her knuckles turned white. Her mother had one arm hooked around the rail opposite her, her free hand working the controls on the console. The walls around them gleamed a bright and harsh white that hurt her eyes. It resembled the inside of the prison, only better lit. The thought did not comfort her in the least. The ship gave a lurch and her mother grabbed a softly glowing sphere-control and flipped switches in a mad rush. Some of the TARDIS sticks and switches she recognized from her classes, but most of them were a mystery, and this newer model was supposed to be easy
The TARDIS shook all around her as they flew like a bullet through the time vortex. The rails were vibrating under her palms and she could feel the sweat gathering there, threatening to break her hold next time the ship jumped about. She was scared it’d be shaken to pieces while they were still inside. The ship was nearly State of the Art, only a very few newer models had been introduced since; it wasn’t supposed
to be this bumpy. The turbulence was in the vortex itself, being contorted this way and that by outside forces. She tightened her grip and balanced herself more evenly on the floor, a tiny spark of anger flaring inside her. She was not
going to be thrown around like some ragdoll on her own ship – or her mother’s anyway.
“Where are we going?” she asked as her mother glanced over her shoulder at her.
“Anywhere else. Someone’s initiated a massive time-lock! I’m just trying to get us out
before we’re sealed in!” her mother shouted back over the din of the TARDIS being buffeted about in the vortex.
Blissa swallowed her other questions, she dared not interrupt. Her mother was intensely focused on the central control systems before her, hitting switches, turning dials, angrily hissing every time the TARDIS jolted beneath their feet, and every time her movement became all the more frantic. She hadn’t used this thing since the day she’d gotten it, Blissa recalled, it was a newer version than her mother’s first TARDIS, the one she’d lost long ago. The controls would be different, did she still remember how everything worked? A single failure meant death. Blissa held back tears. She didn’t want to die.
The TARDIS jerked hard. Time slowed to a halt.
Time Lords, their songs, all the little indistinguishable melodies were rising in volume until they were screaming in her head. She tried to block them out but it was like trying to dam an ocean. Pressure built in her ears. Her mother was swearing a blue streak at the ship’s controls.
For a few moments these noises too receded, fading away into the winds of time and Blissa thought she heard another singing; a strange and modulated voice in the very back of her mind. Focusing on it, didn’t notice as the other voices were silenced in the vortex. The song was slow and quiet, and full of grief. She could feel its sadness in her hearts – and then a great swell of determination.
She could feel it as Gallifrey’s primary star exploded outward in a supernova. It incinerated the ships still battling above the Citadel. She screamed as the psychic connection to her people was severed, tearing like reams of mental cloth. Hundreds tried to escape through the vortex. Only one ship succeeded, evading the time-lock, blasted through time and space. The Time Lords and the Daleks were destroyed together, locked forever in their own impenetrable time bubble.
And Gallifrey burned.
Time snapped back to its normal flow, sending the ship whirling through space on a purely ballistic trajectory. The only sounds were the workings of the Tardis and her mother sobbing. The songs of her people were gone.
She stared dumbly around. Where had they gone? Why was there this rushing in her head? The silence felt so loud. It filled her, filled her head, drowning out her mother’s quiet song, blocking all other thought. She couldn’t breathe. Gasping, she sunk to the floor, trying to draw air into rebelling lungs, one hand still gripping the rail for dear life.
The control room was getting darker. The darkness swirled around her, almost alive in its movements. She didn’t remember sinking to the floor but suddenly that’s where she was. And then she didn’t remember anything else.
She’d gone to L.A.
It was inevitable, really. This was where everything had started. She’d kind of hoped she’d feel something – maybe like closure – that it’d be different here. It wasn’t. She really needed to rethink her logic, not that she’d actually used any. Then again, she didn’t want to be rational, didn’t want to think. She just wanted the pain to stop. Her hearts hurt so much she could barely see straight.
At least her head felt better. She’d had a constant pounding headache for those first few days, like the blade of a knife stuck in her brain. She had felt sick. There was something powerful and dark and omnipresent clouding her senses, sitting in the void where the songs of her people used to be. It radiated energy. Enough she’d been tempted to let her senses dip into it slightly. But just reaching out telepathically had sent her fleeing back to the safety of her own thoughts. It was repulsive, having the mental consistency of motor oil, dark and sticky, and there was a hungry quality to the way it had drawn her in.
She had blocked it out as well as she could, suppressing her telepathy to keep from brushing against it again. It sat on the edge of her senses, a pulsating blackness, too powerful to block out completely but now she could ignore it if she tried hard enough. Not like being telepathic was an advantage now, not when that thing eclipsed anything she might have sensed. She didn't think any Time Lord would be able to sense past the shadow that thing
She could still sense a little distance around her without much trouble; it was like having a train going by - it was so loud you couldn't hear anything but it in the distance, but you could still hear what people said beside you. So she could feel her room, the room above her with the guy with the anxiety issues, and the way too excited couple next door. Oh joy.
An adult Time Lord would have the power and control to shut everything out but what he – or she – wanted. Mostly. She didn’t have that control, and without it her power was only a drawback. No matter how hard she tried to suppress it she was stuck sensing some of the stronger emotions of anyone around her whether she wanted to or not. And the feelings from her neighbors in addition to her own conflicted sentiments were only confusing her more. For the thousandth time she wished this was just a nightmare, that she wasn’t really a Time Lord, that Angel-
A wave of hurt knocked her back onto the hard cot masquerading as a bed.
Angel. She could still remember the look on his face when she- A sob caught in her throat. She’d tricked him, betrayed him, and he’d known at the end, he’d known
. She felt so horribly guilty. Worse, her guilt came not from killing him, cruelly sticking a sword in his gut when he had no memory of the things he’d done. It had been necessary, him or the world. No, she felt guilty over not
feeling guilty for that, for doing her duty so coldly, the brief pleasure she’d had getting back at the monster who’d hounded her for months. She deserved to be miserable. When she cried about Angel she cried for herself. Her hearts contracted painfully. It hurt so much, to know he’d never hold her, talk to her again, and it was all her fault. Her duty, her anger at the thing that had worn his face had been what made her lose Angel. She wanted to run into his arms and tell him what had happened. Gallifrey’s destruction, the death of her entire race, just how terribly alone
she was. She kept telling herself it wasn’t her life. But she loved him.
There was something wrong with her. She knew it.
She didn’t know much about the chameleon arch. She wasn’t old enough to have been in the right classes and then her mother had drafted her into serving in the prison anyway. But she did know the basics. When you used it you became someone else for a while, but when you opened the watch again you were back to being yourself. Well, Blissa had come back, but Buffy was still here and she wasn’t leaving. She’d heard that Time Lords who used the arch sometimes became attached to the people their imaginary self had known, but they were still themselves. There wasn’t supposed to be this confusion and there was no one left to ask.
Sitting on her hard little cot in a hotel where no one looked at her twice she started to cry. She’d never been more alone in her entire life. Both of them. Blissa and Buffy cried together – for her people, her planet, Angel and home – and she couldn’t have said who cried for what.
Eventually the tears subsided. Even grief as profound as hers could not be sustained indefinitely, though she’d managed longer than most. She had the stamina. The thought made her smile wryly, if only for a moment. That was her, champion crybaby. She’d been doing that so much. God, she was so sick of it. She kept getting into positions that hurt her so much. She really needed to stop that because now her eyes hurt and the tip of her nose was turning red. She should make a vow or something, to never do anything to make herself cry again.
Now her face was starting to itch as well as hurt and there was just no upside to this. Never again. She went to wash up, wiping away the tears but not the dull ache in her ribs. She felt like she’d been on patrol all week. That was another thing she was never doing again. If she wasn’t the Slayer she’d never have met Angel. She’d never have lost him. So, ergo, no more Slayer. No more duty, no more fighting. She couldn’t do this anymore.
A banging on her door jolted her out of her thoughts.
“Rent’s up. Pay up or get out!” The muffled voice shouted through the wood.
The Slayer would’ve ripped that door open and stared him down until he backed off. She had to stop herself from doing just that. She
was not doing the Slayer gig anymore, so she riffled through her drawer for the rapidly diminishing rent money.
Opening the door as far as the chain would allow she handed over the small wad of cash.
She must not have done a thorough enough job cleaning up, or so the manager’s leer told her when he saw her face.
“If you need any comforting…” he said suggestively.
She slammed the door shut.
Just the thought of spending another second with that guy made her feel nauseous. The way he looked at her, she had no doubt who was going to be in his fantasies come night. She pulled her senses in tight, not wanting even the barest hint of what was going through his
head. She already had a good idea.
The only one she wanted was Angel, and he was gone forever.
Money. She needed money to pay for another month instead of a few days as she had. She thought about how she didn’t want to deal with that guy any longer than she had to, pretending she wasn’t just trying not to have another cry-fest.
This place rented by however long you paid for rather than any specific amount of time. Most of its residents wanted only a few days shelter before moving on. She didn’t ask what they did, didn’t talk to them even and for the most part she was ignored as long as she paid up for another month or week when the money ran out. Now she had to find a way to scrounge up more rent money, and food was becoming a priority. What could she do? Living on the street was not an option. There was just no way, not her.
She still had options. She could find some kind of work or…
Or she could go to her mother’s TARDIS.
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