Second Chances by Dr Dave
Summary: Tegan reunites with who appears to be the 5th Doctor some 12 years after she left him.
Rating: All Ages
Categories: Fifth Doctor
Characters: Tegan Jovanka, The Doctor (5th)
Genres: General, Hurt/Comfort
Second Chances by Dr Dave
Chapter 1: Full StoryAuthor's Notes:
She sat alone near the docks facing a row of abandoned warehouses.
"Last stop," she said to herself as she took out a sketching journal and two pencils. She opened the journal to a stark white page and scribbled across the top "Journey’s End".
She contemplated the perspective for a while and then began sketching the warehouses.
She had been drawing for about a half-hour when a passer by approached her.
"Please tell me if I am intruding but may I watch you sketch?" the stranger asked.
Something in the tone of his voice told her he was harmless and she didn’t even bother to look up from her sketch as she continued to draw.
"No, you aren’t intruding. Please." She said motioning with her free hand for him to sit.
"Art has always fascinated me. Are you a professional?"
"I’ve done some book jackets and a couple of children’s books. Mostly portraits and commissioned pieces though. I’m about to open a gallery and studio in Brisbane. Funny, because I never took myself seriously as an artist. I mean I could always draw pretty well but art became a way of dealing with issues. I just never knew other people would enjoy my work so much."
"Why? You’re quite good. But I can’t imagine too many people hanging a picture of an abandoned warehouse in their living room."
"Oh this is purely therapeutic. Exorcising a few demons of regret. I lost a bit of myself here once. Or maybe I should say I threw it away." She said continuing to sketch.
"Threw it away?"
"It’s a long story." She said as the strokes of her pencil paused. She seemed to lose herself in thought for a moment and suddenly resumed her sketching. "Like I said, this sketch is simply therapeutic."
"I lost something here once as well. Someone, I should say."
Her body froze with the chill of remembrance. Why had she not recognized the voice before now? She closed her eyes as she turned toward him.
"Hello Tegan, you have no idea how wonderful it is to see you."
She opened her eyes and before she could catch herself she was embracing him. An embrace warmly received and returned. She was exactly as she had remembered him except for the clothes. Still a cricket player’s garb but somewhat different than the last time she saw him.
"From what I gather from the TARDIS I guess it has been 12 years for you now."
Her joy was suddenly replaced by concern. "Why are you here? What’s happening."
"Don’t worry, no wild catastrophes. I’m here for the same reason as you. Trying to exorcise a few regrets. I tried to get back to catch you as you ran from the warehouse but I just couldn’t get the TARDIS to get me to the right time zone. It has been substantially longer than 12 years for me Tegan."
"You always did say time was relative in the TARDIS, Doc."
"Yes well, it would seem time has finally caught up with me."
"Maybe the TARDIS knew what she was doing Doctor. I couldn’t keep going. Not then.
There was too much pain."
"And has the time healed those wounds?"
"No." She said a little more quickly than she had wanted too. "No Doctor. I think in many ways the time made it worse." She said a lump forming in her throat as her eyes began to tear up. You see, I always thought we would meet again like that time in Amsterdam, that I would join you again. And then the years continued to pass. I figured you had forgotten me and I tried to forget you. Obviously I failed." She said nodding toward her sketchbook and then turning her head to hide her emotion.
"I wandered the universe for another 800 years after you left, Tegan. Fought evil on a scale unimaginable. I’m glad you weren’t there to see some of my darker moments. Then it was time to go home. I have lived on Gallifrey for the last 400 years. Decided at #11 to give up the traveling and adventure. There was emptiness in me that no tussle with Cybermen or Daleks would fill. Then one day I decided to open the TARDIS again. The old girl led me to your room. That is where I found the source of my emptiness. You."
"Doctor," She whispered, amazed by the emotion of his words.
"The way we parted company Tegan scarred my hearts. It ate at my subconscious for centuries. But it wasn’t until I found your old room that it resurfaced. Companions have come and gone many times. Some found new lives; others lost their lives. But apart from Susan, no one’s departure had the impact that yours did."
I brought Turlough back here several times before we finally moved on. I think he missed you as well. Always the wrong time zone or something drew us off course, and finally I resigned myself to accepting that you were gone. But I guess I never did accept it. My regeneration simply buried it away.
"But you look the same."
"Oh I’ve regenerated 8 times since we parted," he said realizing her confusion.
"In your room I found one of your old sketch books. You had drawn portraits of me and Nyssa, and Adric many times. Romana taught me how to control my regeneration process and when the time came I used your portrait of me as a template. I wanted to be as you remembered me when I found you again. If I found you again.
"When the time came? You mean you knew you were going to die?"
"The body was very old Tegan. I was over 500 years old when I regenerated the first time. No falling from great heights or other such trauma. My fifth incarnation was the happiest time of my lives, Tegan. The body was so young. I knew the regeneration had to have been influenced by you and Adric and Nyssa. You were all so young. I was more alive than I had ever been. And the way we all interacted. The arguing, the bickering.
"Sorry Doctor," she said, remembering quite a few heated exchanges in the console room when they hadn’t arrived at Heathrow Airport for the fiftieth time.
"No, don’t apologize. Looking back, I know that I loved every moment of it. Suddenly I wasn’t such a righteous old Time Lord anymore. Not one that everyone was in awe of. You were my friends and in many ways my equals. We were like family. Granted a dysfunctional one, but a family none the less."
Tegan couldn’t help but smile at him. It was met by his boyish smile that faded all too quickly.
"And then..and then Adric…died. And we argued about going back to save him. I know I hurt you Tegan."
"Is that why you left me at Heathrow?"
"Yes. I thought things would never be the same between us and for once the TARDIS had actually gotten us where you wanted to be."
"Where I thought I wanted to be," she corrected him. "I wanted to be with you. Finding you in Amsterdam that next year was a second chance for me."
"And for me. I had never had a companion that wanted to come back. I know I acted otherwise but I was so glad for you to rejoin us. Nysaa had missed you terribly and I just couldn’t be the friend to her that you were. I was more of the father figure for her I suppose."
"I felt the same when she left."
"Oh, you should be very proud of her. She practically eradicated Lazarus Disease and a few others. Her daughter is quite the scientist herself."
"Yes, I had the chance to see Nyssa again a regeneration or three back. She and Olvir are very happy together."
"Thank you Doctor for telling me that."
"I always thought we became a little closer after Terminus."
"Well it was either you or Turlough. Not much choice."
They both laughed.
"You would be proud of him too actually. He went back to his home planet. And as quite the hero. Granted he was duplicitous and arrogant, and at times, murderous, but I am glad to have known him."
"An d what words do you use when you talk about me behind my back?"
"Brave, loyal, with an untamable spirit."
"Thank you Doctor. I suppose we did become a little closer. That week with my grandfather was wonderful. He was quite impressed with you as I recall."
"But then, in the end, you ran from me Tegan. Ran away from me as though I had become as evil as those we had fought in all our travels. I could not become one with the Matrix until I had righted this wrong."
"Doctor, I never thought you were evil. You were the only constant in my life. I could trust you with everything I had and was. And then I saw you beaten down. Broken to the point that you would resort to killing. Suddenly there weren’t any constants. That scared me. And instead of sticking by you I ran. Ran away from a man I had saved and been saved by more times than I could count." The emotion that had been building since she had first looked into his eyes now overflowed. She no longer bothered to hide the tears. She looked at him as he began to cry as well.
"I never told you my Mother was human did I?"
"I’m pretty sure I would have remembered that Doc." She chuckled brushing away tears. "Surprising in some ways I suppose. But it makes some things about you make more sense." She added.
"Such as," he asked, calmly pondering why the revelation had not astonished her more.
"You’ve seen wonders across a thousand galaxies and you always come back here. You have connections here, friends here. And your compassion…and your passion for earth and its people. That always made me wonder. The emotion when you quoted Keates or hummed Mozart. Now I know."
"I have a greater understanding of emotion than most Time Lords. Ironically it was a doctor that opened my eyes to it. In San Francisco of all places. But it was a long time before I knew why your sudden departure had affected me the way it had. He gently touched her cheek to wipe a tear. I loved you. And had it not been for my 5th regeneration scrambling my mind the way that it did I would have found you to tell you. Instead I had to wait 1200 years." His voice lost strength as he turned slightly away.
She looked at him silently for a moment and spoke the words she had waited 12 years to say.
"Doctor, I knew." She said very tenderly entwining her hand with his.
"I knew. When you were willing to give the rest of your lives up for me and Nyssa on that ship with Mawdryn, I knew. I knew when you stood in front of the cyberman who had been ordered to kill me. I knew when you held me after the Mara was finally destroyed. And especially when I ran I knew. And I guess I’ve been running ever since."
They both sat quietly for a moment. Her laughter broke the silence.
"What’s so funny?"
"Sorry, but are you implying that you left one of your hearts in San Francisco."
They both were laughing now as Tegan continued to sketch the warehouses.
"So your art became your therapy. May I?"
She stopped sketching and handed him the sketchbook. He thumbed through the pages. Everything from the Barnett Bypass and Logopolis up until the Warehouse. It was all there. "These are beautifully done."
"It was a beautiful time in my life. Spent with beautiful people and a beautiful man."
"Journey’s end, eh Tegan? Time to stop running I suppose."
"How long, after I left?"
"How long, what?"
"Around 2 weeks I would say."
"Was it smoother than the last? You didn’t have the zero room."
"My memory is a little clouded on the details but I know it was the most difficult of them all."
"I’m sorry I wasn’t there. I could have helped."
"Don’t be sorry. I really don’t think you would have gotten along very well with that incarnation. Our personality would have clashed as badly as my coat and pants."
Tegan suddenly understood the implications of how many times the Doctor had said he regenerated. "12 regenerations. That would mean…."
He nodded. "Better make this one count hmm?"
They sat until dusk talking and sharing the stories of their lives since they had parted.
They held hands walking along the docks toward a familiar blue box.
"Well Doctor, will you come to the opening of my gallery."
"Of course. I would love to see your work. You’ve become a strong woman Tegan. I’m proud of you. It warms these hearts to know that travelling with me didn’t take away more from you than you took from me."
"Thank you Doctor. For giving me a second chance to tell you goodbye."
"No, thank you Miss Jovanka."
"For everything you are. And this isn’t goodbye. I’ll be at the opening of your gallery."
"Well a goodbye just in case."
"You still have little faith."
"And you still can’t blame me."
A long embraced followed some laughter. Slowly they parted and the Doctor opened the door to the TARDIS.
" You know Doctor this sketchbook isn’t complete. There’s one place I haven’t sketched."
"I had noticed that. The Eye of Orion"
I seem to remember our time there being cut short last time.
He broke into his boyish smile.
She watched as he set the coordinates. "A short trip to the Eye of Orion and then I promise to get you back to your gallery in Brisbane in time for your opening."
She opened the sketchbook to the warehouses. With quick strokes of her pencil the words "Journey’s End" were marked through.
She smiled and whispered to herself. "Brave Heart Tegan."
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