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[personal profile] globaldominationent
Title: Once Upon A Time
Spoilers: Up to Last of the Time Lords, some mentions of Torchwood.
Rating: PG13 – for some frank language and mentions of violence
Summary: Lucy Saxon tells her story.
Disclaimer: These characters are not mine. I don’t need money. This is a love affair, or insanity, I can't quite decide.

It was the drums; always the drums. I forget now whether I always heard them... or if it was only after He came into my life that they started. But now He’s gone and they still don’t stop.

Let me tell you my story, no I insist. It’s not as if you’re tied up doing anything else. Of course, I’ll be wiping this from your memory later. It’s wonderful stuff, this Retcon.

You’ll think me mad, maybe you already do... maybe I am. You saw it all, lived it in as stark reality as reality could possibly be but you don’t remember any of it. And he never told you, he probably wanted to spare you. So few people remember, and we’re all mad now. Of course we are; who would believe that such things can happen?

The story starts with Once Upon a Time, yes, as all the best stories do… Once Upon a Time there was a girl called Lucy, and she... well, she had her head in the stars.

Lucy never wanted for anything, no we can’t blame it on that, there was not a single thing that money could buy that she needed. She went to the best schools. She had the right friends. She was on the right teams. She had the right job. She went to the best parties. Her clothes had labels most people would die for. But in her world everyone had all that. It didn’t mean you were anything. It all meant nothing.

From the earliest age, at night in the dorm with the other girls all asleep, she turned inwards and created universes within herself. She dreamt of kaleidoscopic alien worlds, of adventures amongst the stars with heroes and villains playing epic battles with time and reality at stake.

In some ways the world around her eventually became the thing least real to her. She had worlds, eons and eternities, within her. Oh, not that anyone knew, not that anyone saw. Her days were a façade of banality; her scribbled stories of glories in the beyond were in such sharp contrast to the dull, often made up, stories to pad out other empty lives that she’d ghost write on demand for the publishing house. She went out, she had boyfriends; of course she had sex. I wouldn’t want to give you the impression that she didn’t live any kind of life outside her head. It was just all... dull and empty.

Lucy’s "real” life isn’t even worth remembering. And it’s all gone now, vanished, like morning mist burnt off in the sunshine of the day. Good riddance to it. But the dreamscapes, they turned out to be real. There’s so much to see out there. There’s so much beauty, and so much horror, and all of it turns out the same. It all ends with a whimper, not a bang.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. I was starting at the beginning, wasn’t I?

Maybe He’s the real beginning of my life. But did He bring the drums? Or did I always hear them? I wish I could remember.

You do remember Harold Saxon? How could you not? The most amazing thing this country – this world – has ever seen! So much hope, so much promise. He was Prime Minister for just a few days. Heart attack, the official reports say. Torchwood and UNIT saw to that. With all the fuss over the President’s death, my Harry, my Master, was just a footnote with only the conspiracy nuts asking why. And, would you believe, Harriet bloody Jones stepping in to pick up the pieces and avert a war!

I’m doing it again... jumping ahead. But let's go back to the beginning...

The first time I met Harold Saxon was at my family home. He was dazzling. Everyone wanted to be near him; to bask in his obvious glory and cling to his coat tails… my father included. Father had never quite gotten over no longer getting to sit in the House of Lords. He liked the taste of power. He wanted it back and he wasn’t above working behind the scenes to secure it. Harry was there because he needed the support of my father and his publishing connections. He needed someone respectable and old world to give his words weight amongst the moneyed classes so he could continue with his plans for Archangel. It’s dull but he needed funding.

You know the Archangel network was never dismantled. You lot merely took it under your control. Strange that...

The house was ablaze with lights that night. Torches lit the driveway. Music was in the air. It was exactly like a cheesy romance novel... all candlelight and flowers… right down to our eyes meeting across the crowded room.

I hated him on sight. We had sex in the conservatory. I’d never felt more alive.

That’s the first time I remember the drums.

Then the world went on as it had before, until a few days later when He arrived in my office needing a ghost writer for his autobiography. It was my job. I didn’t particularly want to do it. He slightly frightened me but he also tempted me. You know what that feels like, don’t you? I can see it in your eyes. It’s that overarching temptation to explore the new worlds in someone else’s eyes. He cajoled me to go out with him and he offered to change my world. It’s amazing that it started with such a cheesy line. He took me to dinner, and we went dancing. He read poetry to me. He kissed my feet, bathed me in champagne and sang to me such sweet songs in a language I didn’t understand. We were together everyday and, over the course of just one short month, somehow he became my world.

Then, one day in his office, he took my hand and grinned at me.

“Let me show you what’s out there.”

With eyes as excited as a child, he ran, dragging me down corridors, past darkened rooms, till finally we arrived at a locked steel door. I remember it needed a strange looking key, a combination and some sort of eye scan to get in. It was thrilling, what could possibly need such security? You could hear the large steel bolts drawing back in the way of a hundred science fiction movie doors. You can imagine the sense of anti-climax when I saw that the room contained nothing but an ancient blue police call box.

But I was so very wrong. It was a box of delights that he was showing me!

It was a ship; bigger on the inside – so much bigger - than the outside. It was alien and it was alive. I swear I could hear her whispering to me but I couldn’t understand it over the sounds of the drums.

Harry showed me around, through hundreds of rooms with such unimaginable treasures inside them. Plants from alien worlds, relics of civilisations from beyond the stars, rooms full of sunshine and echoing laughter!

We spent days exploring, with him explaining to me at a lightening pace the truth about himself. He told me he was an alien from a world that no longer exists... a Time Lord, and that this was his ship, his TARDIS. Time And Relative Dimension In Space. It was a time machine, no less. But it was broken, so he had decided to make the Earth in this time his home. He said he wanted to help the Human race.

I knew there was something he wasn’t telling me – although he was telling me a twisted version of the truth - but I got caught up in the fantasy. I’d stepped into my dreams.

In a trice, it seemed, we were married. On our wedding day, everyone danced. The sun shone and I was so in love. Reality and dreams had merged into the most amazing whole. There couldn’t have been a person on the face of the Earth that day who was as a happy as I was.

And so I allowed Harry to sweep me off on our honeymoon, realising only at the last moment that he was taking me to the TARDIS.

“Do you love me?” He demanded, covering my face with kisses.

What could I answer but “Yes!”

“I’m going to blow your mind.” He promised as he turned from my arms to the console and powered the ship to throbbing, humming life.

I remember the sensation so clearly, I’ll never forget. You can feel it in every cell of your body. The Time Vortex. The blood in my veins was the drums.

I ran to the TARDIS door as soon as we’d landed, wanting to see, wanting to set foot onto an alien world, to step into the future, but Harry held me back.

“I may not have been totally honest with you.” He said with a sheepish grin. “What you’re going to see out there is going to change your world forever.”

“I’m ready.” I replied foolishly, enthusiastically. How could I have been ready? How could anyone ever be ready for what was out there?

“Welcome to Utopia!” Harry – the Master – shouted over the machine noise as he spread his arms wide to encompass the seemingly endless industrial landscape before us.

I was confused at the start. I didn’t understand. He had to explain it to me.

This was the end of the universe and the Human race was on the brink of extinction, their forms were dying and they had nowhere to go. So he’d brought them technology used by the Cybermen in our time and they were converting themselves, not into Cybermen, but into a new form that could be passed through time. He was going to help them survive and, in gratitude, they were going to let him be their leader.

He would be their Master... and he wanted me at his side.

The Master took me outside, to the surface of the planet and he showed me the sky. There were no stars. There was no life. Everything was dying.

There were no worlds, no colour, no epic battles left to be fought and no heroes or villains left to fight them... there was, just this. It was just the Human race left; ready to mutilate itself beyond all recognition in order to survive, ready to fight and ready to kill.

Even the drums were finally silent. Their absence was the worst thing of all.

If I am mad, that was when it happened. Witnessing the end of everything, the death of everything, could probably do that to you, don’t you think?

All that was left was the Master and his solid presence was my rock, my only hope. I loved him and I hated him in the same instant for taking me from my home and showing me this dead, awful reality.

My Harry, my Master.

I’ve never doubted his love for me. He wanted to include me in everything from then onwards. We were inseparable. He showed me his true face now, the one I’d only glimpsed before. He was harder, stronger and more passionate than ever, if such a thing were possible. He seemed freed in the moment he’d shared the truth with me, as if he’d needed to share it with someone to be truly alive. That I do understand. Sometimes it’s good to share.

I remember the first time I saw him personally kill someone. Just like that he did it. It was some little foolish man, whose name I don’t remember. He’d failed to bring some part of Archangel in on budget. He killed him with his bare hands. It shocked me. I’m amazed I was still shockable. I’m sure I should be ashamed to admit that it aroused me too, but after everything it seems silly to feel shame over such a little thing. We were always having sex everywhere anyway; a cooling corpse in the room with us didn’t make a lot of difference.

I remember the first time I killed too. I didn’t use my bare hands - that would have been silly - no, Harry showed me how to fire a gun. He’d supplied somebody for me to aim at. I never knew who it was or why. I’m sure Harry had his reasons. He always did. No use killing just for the sake of it, he used to say.

Election night was very special. We held a party. The canapés were lovely. We knew he’d win, of course we did! Thanks to Archangel it was a foregone conclusion.

Have I told you about Archangel? About the satellites controlling the population? Oh I have, I’ll keep this to new ground then.

Then the Doctor came, and Harry changed again. Oh yes, he was still stupidly passionate and charismatic but his confidence seemed shaken. He became driven towards his goal... although I wondered now whether his goal was to take control of the Earth or just to defeat the Doctor. He hit me when I made the mistake of suggesting that. He’d started doing that a lot lately. I didn’t like it.

The Doctor..? Oh, he’s another Time Lord. He’s the only other Time Lord, in fact. Strange, the way everyone has forgotten something so powerful. I’d suggest you mention his name to Captain Harkness... if I was going to let you remember any of this. You might get an insightful reaction.

Anyway, now we’re coming to the bit you’ve forgotten. It was quite something. I wish you could remember it. Harry’s ingenious technology – did I say that he was technological and mathematical genius? He ripped open the sky and allowed the Human race from the end of the universe in their neat little metal balls to come back to this time! It was so beautiful watching them stream down from the heavens in their billions. I do wish you could remember. It was our greatest hour; a whole new world was born that day.

Admittedly they did kill a lot of the population and enslave the rest but, oh, if you could only remember it. You had to be there really. Well, you had to be on the Valiant with us. I expect it wasn’t so nice anywhere else.

We’d won. Harry did something terrible to the Doctor that made him old and then he kept him, like a pet. The act of keeping the Doctor around made Harry behave very strangely. I did tell Harry I thought so, but he just hit me again, so I said nothing about it after that.

He kept lots of others – rebels I’d call them - around too. I never did understand why. As it showed in the end, they were dangerous. Well, I can understand why he kept your Captain Harkness... the man is very easy on the eye and it’s not like you can actually kill him. Harry did try. He tried everything. He tried so many things that even he got bored with trying after a while. It was the only time I saw him breaking his own rule of not killing just for killings sake! Your Jack dies so well. Sometimes he was so silently resolute, sometimes there was so much screaming.

I wish... no, um, I mean, we were happy, Harry and me. We were. I knew there were other women. Alright, I knew about the men too. I’m not a prude or a bigot. I married an alien, who am I to judge others?! I might have been disturbed if he’d being doing anything with the Toclafane, but no, let’s not think about that.

Where was I? Oh yes, we were happy. We had it all.

I changed my style somewhat, partially at Harry’s prompting and partly my own. I wanted to emerge butterfly-like into my new role as wife of the Master of Earth. It’s quite a position to live up to. I felt it needed more drama. I did consider metallics and matching robes of some sort but Harry said he’d been there and done that and preferred a more minimalist look now. So I did what I could with colour. I’ve learnt to love red. I used to be such a little mouse, always in shades of beige, hard to believe it looking at myself now.

We were happy. Who wouldn’t be with the world at their feet?

Yes, alright so life on the Valiant was occasionally a little dull, especially when Harry was off with Captain Harkness or the Doctor or doing whatever it was he did when he went out. You can sometimes find yourself at a loose end even if you are the Mistress of the Earth. It’s not all champagne, dramatic reveals and evil laughter. Anyone would get bored occasionally.

I may have started drinking a little and there may have been the odd affair. I was always careful that Harry wouldn’t find out. Apart from that once where I let him, just to find out what he would do. I’ve never seen anyone skinned alive before. It’s really very interesting seeing a Human body laid bare like that. There’s less blood than you would imagine. He hit me again, but this time it wasn’t so bad and he made up for it afterwards.

I was almost happy when Martha Jones finally turned up. It beat the same old same old. Although it did prompt Harry into making the Doctor even older and he became this little wizened creature. He was even more like a pet than before. Harry kept him in a gilded cage and took far too much pleasure from that. I think he even snuck out of bed a few times to go play with him.

Don’t get me wrong, I never wanted us to be defeated. It wasn’t the nicest world we created but it was ours, and who’d not like that? Maybe it didn’t have always have epic battles and we hadn’t yet found our way out into the stars but we would have done. We would have taken the Human race out there. I would have had my chance to see an alien world that wasn’t in the midst of dying. I could have had my chance to see the stars from the other side. I could have ruled them by my Harry’s side.

Then the Doctor and Miss Martha Jones pulled their trick and turned over our glorious applecart. The Doctor was incredible. Using the telepathic connection between the Human race to regenerate himself into a younger form again was inspired. He was truly magnificent. I’d actually forgotten that beauty like that existed in the universe. The end may be always coming and, trust me, it’ll be worse than hell when the drums do stop but, for now, there is some beauty out there.

I never wanted us to be defeated but I couldn’t help myself from uttering his name and adding myself to the power. It was stronger and louder than even the drums. Strangely, I don’t regret it. I was part of a beautiful thing. You may have been too but the thing is that I remember it and you don’t. I can’t explain it to you. You’d never understand, not now.

But poor Miss Jones; I had my Time Lord and he loved me. I feel for her. I really do. At least my myth was also my man.

Of course, despite my new respect for the Doctor, I couldn’t let him take Harry. He had some silly plan about the two of them heading off together and leaving us all behind. It sounded selfish to me – he obviously wanted not to be alone - although he wrapped it in altruism and rubbish about forgiveness. It was as if the Doctor wanted to keep Harry as a pet, just the same way that Harry had done to him.

Thus ends the story of the epic heroes and villains of my imagination; two creatures with the power of Gods, reduced to two small boys trying to outdo each other.

Naturally, it was planned. Harry does love his forward planning. Perhaps he’s been defeated by the Doctor more times than he was prepared to admit to. I was to kill him and make sure I got his ring. It didn’t matter what happened to his body, just keep the ring and I can get him back.

And I will... eventually.

For now I have my own plans. I can still hear the drums. They’re right here in my belly… in my daughter’s heart beats. She has two hearts; it’s a Time Lord thing. One day I’ll bring back her father, and one day she’ll need to find another Time Lord, THE other Time Lord. You need two to start a new race.

Are you sure you don’t hear the drums, Toshiko? You really can’t hear them? Oh well, must be just me then.

Now take your pill like a good girl. You’ve been a very good listener but story time is over now.

It’s time to get down to business. I need you to get me to that spaceship you’ve got holed up in the hanger. I want my daughter born anywhere but on this planet. She’s going to start her life amongst the stars.

How about I put it another way?

Get me the spaceship, Toshiko, and I’ll let your sister live.

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