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I would say this day couldn't get worse, but I think the universe would make it worse if I said that

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“Well, we’re here. Earth - 2021.” The Doctor said, and Alex looked around at the TARDIS, trying to memorise every detail. It would be the first and the last time he stepped inside this machine, and he didn’t want to forget it just yet.

He nodded. “Well, I suppose I’d better get going.”

“Yeah,” He replied, and Alex walked to the door. Stepping inside the TARDIS was something he’d never thought he’d be able to do, never thought he would have the chance to do (mostly because he believed that it was just a fictional machine), but now that he found himself standing inside it, staring at the door, he couldn’t help but not want this to end.

“Well - thank you for everything.” He said, opening the door. “I don’t know how I would have gotten out of that situation without your help. But uh - I guess this is goodbye.”

Rose gave him a wave, which he quickly returned.

“Anyway - forgot to ask this earlier,” The Doctor said. “But what do you think of the TARDIS?”

Alex glanced around at the inside of the police box that was so much more than he could have ever imagined, and the usual answer flashed through his mind. BEfore he could utter it however, it was replaced with a different answer. “It’s smaller on the outside.”

The Doctor stared at him in disbelief, and he found himself having to school his face into neutral just so he wouldn’t crack up with laughter. He found himself avoiding eye contact with Rose for a very similar reason. “It’s - it’s - what?” He said, the Doctor’s voice finding new, previously undiscovered levels of. “Everyone says it’s bigger on the inside. That’s - that’s just the thing! And you -” He sighed, glancing at a flashing light on the console. “Let’s just get out of here, Rose.”

Alex gave a slight smile. “Good luck, and thanks for everything you’ve done.”

“Good luck to you too.” He said, and Alex shut the door on his way out, staring at the public call telephone as the TARDIS disappeared into the night sky, until it was almost as though the events of the last few days had never happened, and he was just taking a walk through the park before falling asleep and witnessing the most curious dream of his lifetime.

 

… 

 

Returning to his home, the first thing that Alex found himself doing was finding his computer, plugging it in because it had somehow run out of charge, and logging onto AO3 to post his work. He wasn’t going to take any more chances with this, especially not since the impossible had almost occurred and he had nearly gotten stuck 80 years into the future.

Double-checking that his work had been successfully uploaded, he sighed, and returned to the open challenges section to see if anything new had been posted. One particular challenge caught his eye, and he found himself clicking on it. The prompt seemed oddly relevant to the events that he had found himself going through, and he clicked on it, opening a new draft in his word processor, thinking why the hell not.

 

 

Meanwhile in the TARDIS, the Doctor stared at Rose over the central console, unidentifiable thoughts running through his mind and a rate faster than human comprehension. “We never did find out what that work was about, did we?” He asked. “The one that strange guy mentioned.”

Rose shrugged. “You might not’ve.” She said, hiding the growing smile as she busied her attention elsewhere.

The Doctor raised his eyebrows and stared oddly at her, and she found herself laughing, yet again.

 

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