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This story is No. 10 in the series "Adventures of A Line Hopper". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: The Doctor's trapped in the Initiative. But why's he there, why can't he escape, and what's really going on behind the scenes? Dark.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Dr. Who/Torchwood > Other BtVS/Ats CharactersShoshiFR1549113,730313834,20416 May 127 Jul 12Yes

Prologue

Author's Note: Note: I hold no rights over any copyrighted material. All characters and creations belong to their original owners. The fandoms that I am using are: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Doctor Who.

This story is slightly AU, but only in terms of timing. The Buffy episodes that I'm using, in this story, aired across two months. In the show, they smoosh it all together so it looks more like it was about 2 weeks. I'm simply taking the liberty of using the full 2 months.

So, yes, things are paced a little differently. There's time between things, in this story, that there isn't time between in the Buffy series. But that's the only place I took any real liberties. Everything else should be pretty much spot on for both canons.

For those of you who haven't seen Buffy, and don't know what some of these things I'm talking about are, don't worry. You'll find out right around the time the Doctor works it all out. In fact, it'll probably be a better story for you, because you'll be working it out with the Doctor.

--000--

Prologue


"Oh, no," said Buffy. "You're staying off my college campus."

The Doctor looked up at her, from the sonic screwdriver he was examining in his hands. "Sorry?"

Buffy fidgeted. "Nothing."

"Is there something you're not telling me?" asked the Doctor.

"No," Buffy insisted. "I just thought… why don't we split up? I mean, you really want to check out why that one Car-fold-stashian vampire—"

"Carflodashian vampire," the Doctor corrected.

"—went into the warehouse," Buffy continued. "And you can do that, while I go and find the other one that's on campus, and do something that is definitely not staking it through the heart. Using the stakes I definitely don't have on me."

The Doctor raised an eyebrow at Buffy. "No wood on the planet Carflodash."

Buffy slumped. "Trust you to find me unstakeable alien vampires."

"And that sword you've hidden on you won't do much good, either," said the Doctor. "Carflodashians have no necks. Which would make decapitation a wee bit tricky."

"Yeah, so if I can't even kill this alien vampire thing, then it's not like it's that big a deal that you're sending me off on my own, is it?" said Buffy.

But she knew that wasn't going to convince him, because the Doctor knew her better than that. He knew that she'd find a way, somehow. She always did.

"I promise to give the vampire a chance?" she added, crossing her fingers behind her back. Because, really, if she was going to be completely honest, she wasn't going to give it a chance. She was going to get rid of it before it went on a major killing spree.

"Oh, all right," sighed the Doctor.

Buffy grinned. Victory Buffy! Any chance to get the Doctor away from the Initiative goons on campus was a victory in her book.

"Don't go wandering off," Buffy warned him. "I know you. If I come back, and the TARDIS isn't here anymore because you've left without saying goodbye — again — I'm going to be really mad at you."

"Blimey, you're worse than I am," said the Doctor. He fished the TARDIS key out of his pocket, and tossed it to Buffy. "Tell you what. Keep the key with you. That way, I'll have to drop by before I leave." He tucked the sonic screwdriver into his pinstripe pocket. "And don't you even think of using that TARDIS key to stake those vampires through the heart! Which, in case you're wondering, would be about three inches to the left of where you expect in a human vampire."

"Wouldn't dream of it," said Buffy, stuffing the TARDIS key into her pocket, and turning to go. "Back in an hour!"

An hour later, Buffy returned to find no Doctor and no TARDIS. Which Buffy had sort of been expecting, considering that the Doctor got bored easily, didn't like saying goodbye, and could open the TARDIS with the snap of his fingers. Looks like the Doctor found all his answers, and left.

Typical.

Buffy didn't think about it until she saw Riley, the next day. He treated her to a movie, and Buffy was happy to accept. Riley time was fun time, after all. And it wasn't like there was any chance the Doctor would show up telling her the world was in danger and she had to go save it again. She sat back in her seat with popcorn, to enjoy the movie.

It was a foreign film. With subtitles.

And Buffy listened, in horror, as every actor spoke their lines in perfect English.

--000--

At first, it had been easy. Because at first, Riley hadn't known.

When he'd first seen the creature in the brown pinstripe suit, he hadn't thought the creature was anything more than a vampire. After all, Riley knew the Doctor, and this wasn't the Doctor. The Doctor was younger-looking, with longer, floppier brown hair, green eyes, and a bow tie. Whatever this creature in the brown pinstripe suit was that kept trying to escape the Initiative, it wasn't the Doctor.

And, no, it didn't matter that this pinstripe suited creature had two hearts. Or kept escaping in innovative and persistent ways. Or had that same penetrating stare — so much like the Doctor's own green-eyed one. Or that this creature had a sonic screwdriver which had been confiscated from it upon its capture. Riley knew what the Doctor looked like, and this wasn't the Doctor.

Then Riley had cornered the pinstripe suited creature, on its fifth escape attempt. And the creature had recognized him.

"Should have known," muttered the creature. "Find a place full of intolerant humans who love waving guns about, and that's where you'll find Riley Finn. Does Elizabeth know your hobby involves torturing nonhuman life forms, or do you keep that little tidbit to yourself?"

Riley lowered the gun, as the shock of complete certainty crashed across him. Elizabeth. There was only one person who called Buffy that. Riley didn't know how, or why, or what was going on, but this… was the Doctor.

By that time, a large number of other Initiative teams had surrounded the two of them, but they weren't carrying the Taser Blasters that were designed only to knock out Hostile Sub Terrestrials using a surge of electricity. These soldiers were armed with real bullet-firing guns. And all those guns were leveled right at this creature that was… really was… the Doctor.

Riley looked around at the others, confused. Graham pulled him back, out of the way of the guns.

"We're shooting him?" asked Riley.

"Hostile 29 is too much trouble to keep," Graham explained to Riley. "The scientists have given permission for it to be put down."

And… oh, this really was the Doctor, it had to be, only the Doctor would launch into full-scale babble mode when faced with this many loaded guns. Only the Doctor would show no fear, just keep talking about how they couldn't kill him, because of something having to do with a symbiotic link, and… this was the Doctor. The actual Doctor. Somehow, in some impossible, indescribable way, this was the same person that had saved Buffy from those Daleks a short time ago.

Riley's mind raced. He didn't hate the Doctor. Really, really, really didn't hate the Doctor. At all. Even remotely. Not one single little bit. Nope. Didn't, didn't, didn't hate him.

But did he not-hate the Doctor enough to step in front of those loaded guns and stop the soldiers from shooting? Did he not-hate the Doctor enough to spare his life?

The Doctor was trapped. Cornered. Buffy wasn't around to save him. And perhaps she'd never need to be again. Perhaps… if the Doctor was dead, Buffy would finally forget about him. This could be Riley's best opportunity to get rid of this stupid jerk alien once and for all. To have Buffy all to himself. This could be Riley's big break. All he had to do was do nothing.

Riley Finn stepped between the guns and the Doctor.

The Doctor had saved Buffy's life. He'd saved the world. A lot. He'd… well, aside from making eyes at Buffy, he'd been good. Unquestionably, unerringly good. And… Riley wasn't going to let someone like that die.

"Not this one," Riley told the others. "This one's an ally."

The other Initiative soldiers began shouting at him to move out of the way, that he was being an idiot, that this was a Hostile Sub Terrestrial and Riley couldn't treat HSTs like they were people. Forrest growled something at him about how Buffy had messed with his head.

Riley was out of options. Explaining the Doctor was just as much a person as the rest of them would do nothing — they wouldn't believe him, anyways (and he wasn't completely sure he believed it himself). And they wouldn't believe him about the fact that the Doctor saved the world a lot, either. But… if the Doctor had really been as involved in American history as he claimed, there was one person at the Initiative who might believe Riley. And as Riley saw the newly arrived Colonel George Haviland from Washington passing by, he knew this was his only chance to save Buffy's alien friend.

"You don't understand," said Riley, loud enough that Haviland could overhear. "It's not human, but it's useful. It's travelled through time. Every military defeat, every military victory, this creature's seen it. If you shoot it, or modify its brain in any way, you'll never get the information."

"Don't you dare, Riley Finn," the Doctor warned, in a low voice.

But Riley wasn't paying attention to the Doctor. He wasn't in the mood for the Doctor's usual suspicions and paranoia about the US military or the Initiative. He was watching Colonel Haviland, who'd stepped in as head of the Initiative after Professor Walsh's death, as he heard Riley's words. As he paused in his walk, considering them.

Haviland's head snapped over to the Doctor, and as soon as he saw the alien, his eyes seemed to glow with anticipation.

"Is that so?" he asked.

The soldiers and scientists clearly couldn't believe that Haviland was buying any of this, but Haviland wasn't paying them any attention.

"There are rumors of a non-human who travels through time," said Haviland, eyes locked on the Doctor. "Who can develop weapons of such destruction and carnage that humanity hasn't even dreamed of them, yet. Who knows of every military defeat and victory in the future of this country. Who can save the world with no effort at all." He stepped closer, meeting the Doctor's eyes with his own. "Is that you?"

The Doctor denied it. He babbled about how Riley was crazy, how the idea of travelling through time was daft, how he didn't know anything at all and certainly nothing about the future. All that time, backing over towards a gap in the soldiers, maneuvering himself into the perfect position to run for the exit.

Haviland noticed.

"Secure it," Haviland commanded to the men around him.

The Doctor bolted, but didn't get two steps away before he was surrounded by Initiative soldiers. They jumped on him, seizing his arms and forcing them behind his back, then dragging him towards Colonel Haviland. The Doctor struggled to break free, but couldn't.

Haviland placed a hand on either side of the Doctor's chest, and a small smile twitched at his lips as he felt the double heart beat. He examined the Doctor, carefully.

"So it is you," said Colonel Haviland.

The Doctor's eyes flicked over to the camera on the wall with just a glimpse of the panic he was concealing, soon hidden by a perky smile. "Yes, hello! I'm the Doctor. Nice to meet you! Must dash!"

He tried to break free from the soldiers, but they were stronger than the Doctor was expecting, and held him in place.

"Do you have an objection to helping us protect this country?" Haviland asked.

"Well, I do object to helping create weapons of massive death and destruction," said the Doctor. "And the bit about revealing the future is something I'm none too keen on, either. Although, saving the world — I'm quite good at that."

Haviland turned to the scientists. "Dr. Arthur Green," he said. "This creature is now a high-security risk. I want it secured, guarded at all times, and never allowed to escape. Is that clear?"

"Yes, sir," said Dr. Green.

"And see if you can get it to talk," added Haviland. "I don't care how, so long as you don't kill it or damage its mind in any way. Agent Finn is right. This one's too valuable to risk."

"Oi!" said the Doctor, as he was dragged away. "If all you want is for me to talk, I'll talk! I love to talk! Just give me some tea and a jammy dodger and I'll…" His voice faded into the distance, as the Doctor disappeared into the Initiative.

"Good work, Agent Finn," Haviland told him. "Well spotted. You have just given the country an invaluable resource."

Riley saluted Haviland, but as he did so, he thought about what he'd just done. He had saved the Doctor's life. And made it impossible for him to ever escape from the Initiative. Someone like the Doctor — they'd watch him 24/7, put in the highest level of security, ensure that there was no way he could ever, ever get out. They wouldn't modify his brain, they wouldn't kill him, but they'd never let him go.

The Doctor was safe, trapped and unable to get back to Buffy on the surface. And Buffy was safe, up above, where she could forget the Doctor ever existed. Finally, finally, Buffy and the Doctor were separated. And the only person who could get the two of them back together was Riley.

Riley really, really, really didn't hate the Doctor. He knew that.

Now he just had to decide what that meant.

--000--

An excerpt from a correspondence with a colleague, Re: Hostile 29, from the Desk of Dr. Arthur Green:

I confess, I am usually wary about engaging in scientific collaboration of this sort at such a long distance, and with someone I haven't met face to face, but having gone through the papers you have sent me, I believe that you are a scientist of the highest quality.

As you clearly have the security clearance to know about Hostile 29's existence, and Colonel Haviland does not object, I believe that a collaboration between the two of us would be mutually beneficial. Hostile 29 does appear to be — just as you've heard — a truly unique creature. And a truly fascinating subject.

I have sent you the results to the preliminary tests. I hope to hear more from you, soon.
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