Author's Notes:
If we have to lose Lis, I'd like to imagine that Sarah Jane is still out there, even if we can never see more of her adventures. This fic is largely me working through my immediate grief.

There are vague references to "Dimensions in Time" and "The Five Doctors," but nothing really spoilery.
As always, Doctor Who and The Sarah Jane Adventures are not mine.

One

It’s cold, in the dream.

She’s other people, as you are in dreams. The strange logic of a half-sleeping brain means the changes make sense, even as the Doctor’s permutations and the shifting scenery cause creeping unease. She doesn’t like this dream, but she’s afraid to wake up, to leave him behind.

Is someone trying to hurt him?

Is someone trying to hurt her?

She’s herself, somehow, suddenly, both as she is now and as she was then, when she traveled with the Doctor. And there he is–and it’s natural that he’s there. She skips up to him. Cool as a cucumber.

A shift, and she’s other people again. She knows she’ll understand it perfectly as long as she doesn’t have to explain.

It’s still cold.

They save the day. Just like they always do. She’s not in her body as the Doctor leaves, again. She’s still not in her body as the dream begins to fade, as she is the one to leave the Doctor this time.

Two

She’s on Gallifrey at last; have the rules changed? Her first Doctor is there. She rides in Bessie. The leather of the seats is cold against her skin. The two suns burn angry in the sky–how is it they do not warm her? Nothing makes sense in dreams.

Her second Doctor hasn’t come.

(She should have known better than to expect him to come. She is young, but she is old enough to know him.)

Her mind conjures other Doctors. Some she recognizes from the visual records in the TARDIS. One is entirely new. He will not look at her.

Frost blooms strange flowery patterns upon the ground, up her shoes. Spiraling ice ferns draw themselves upon her skin.

For a moment, she imagines she has another name.

It dies on her lips as her first Doctor carries her home.

Three

But they don’t arrive at home. She’s still herself, but her clothes have changed. Her mind feels cleaner, newer (but the part of her noticing the newness still feels old, so old, so tired and weary and wary).

“Hello, Sarah Jane.”

She’s arrived back at the start.

“Is this the finality?” she says. Dream-grammar. Muddled, like dream-logic and dream-time, but she knows what she is saying. The words are heavy in her mouth, portentous. She ladles them out with gravitas. “Have I already been?”

“Course not.” And he’s her third Doctor now, brown eyes indignant. “As if I’d let you.”

“But I feel the stars going out.” She can, in her bones. That’s why it’s so cold, she suddenly knows.

“Just one.” And now he’s her second, winding the long scarf around her. She shivers beneath it. He changes faces again, tweaks his bowtie into place and kisses her forehead. “But oh, what a star.”

Tears have frozen on her face, tears she does not remember crying. The next thing she says is going to be very important, and she does not know what it is yet. “I’ll burn for the star. Burn memories, burn as a memory. Shine bright.”

He is all of his selves and more besides. He presses a cup of coffee into her hands; it barely warms them. It is cold in the dream, cold, cold…

Waking

She has kicked off the covers in her sleep.

She wakes Luke with a call. He is doing well at school, of course. After making sure that aliens are not invading again, he does not ask why his mother is calling him at two in the morning to hear him chat about nothing at all.

He is such a good boy.

She fixes a cup of tea and watches the night and early dawn, the rain blurring the infinite uncountable pinpricks of stars.

She cries for a good fifteen minutes without knowing why.