Work Header

The Stolen Earth Incident

Chapter Text


30 April 2009



Her second target worked for Torchwood.

“The fourth contact seems to be having some trouble getting through,” Harriet was saying.  “Let me try to boost the signal.”

“That’s me!” Rose called out, even though she knew Harriet wouldn’t be able to hear her.  She had to wonder just how they’d known she was back on Earth, though. 

The last screen cleared of snow, and another woman appeared in it, a handsome, gangly man standing next to her.  Rose frowned.  Who was this?

And why was Jack’s team reacting the way they were?

“Nightingale!” Jones shouted.  And was he crying?  “I sang the Song of Mourning for you!”

The strange woman laughed.  “I think you jumped the gun just a bit, Dragon.”

“Don’t make me do it again, alright?”

Rose was confused.  What was all this Nightingale and Dragon stuff?  This Ianto Jones was obviously close to this woman, as was Jack judging by the huge grin on his face, and the rest of the crowd at the Torchwood end of the connection. 

She paid attention to what they were talking about, but none of it made any sense.  There was something about a Project Indigo, and what Rose gathered was a teleport, and the man with Martha Jones was looking at her as if she hung the Moon. 

It would have been romantic if things weren’t quite so dire.

And then, Harriet introduced her as Martha Jones, another former Companion who was working with UNIT.

“I was a Companion, too,” she mumbled, coming to the conclusion that they hadn’t been looking for her after all.  It was a let-down, but it made sense.  If what Harriet was saying was true, then this software had homed in on her by accident, simply because it somehow knew she’d travelled with the Doctor. 

They would have no idea about the Dimension Cannon; that the walls between the dimensions were crumbling and that the entirety of creation was going to be destroyed.  She really needed to get to them, to get this information to them. 

Rose played with the idea of getting Doctor Coulson and her Doctor Jones to centre the cannon on Clint Barton, that way she’d be able to at least let Jack know what was going on. 

Instead, she listened as they discussed what was going on, and how Martha had tried to reach the Doctor but that something was blocking the mobile signal.  That something being the Daleks, of course.

Then the Jones on the other end of the network surrendered his chair to another woman, this one Japanese and who looked terrible.  Her face was pale, there were dark circles under her eyes, and if Rose had to guess she was barely keeping herself upright as she introduced herself as Doctor Toshiko Sato.

Harriet and Sarah Jane both looked confused when this Toshiko person started going on about feeling the Earth dying, but Martha Jones was nodding along, as if she knew precisely what she was being told.  How could someone feel something like that?  Sure, the Doctor had once claimed that he could feel the planet spinning under his feet, but that was a Time Lord thing, right?  And the Doctor was the last one of those. 

It was then that Rose put a few things together.  The readings from the Dimension Cannon had put Clint Barton in Cardiff.  There’d been a Rift in time and space there; the Doctor had used it to refuel and it had nearly exploded twice: once with Gwyneth and the other time during that mess with Margaret Blaine.  Jack’s version of Torchwood – because London’s had been practically destroyed – must have something to do with that Rift. 

And now, this Toshiko person was saying they could use that power to break through whatever was blocking the phone signals and get in touch with the Doctor. 

Rose didn’t know who Mr Smith was, but she was willing to bet he was some sort of computer if he could somehow access all the phones in the world.  It made her wonder where K-9 was, and if the dog was still around somewhere.

So much had changed.  Well, she could catch up once she met up with the Doctor and they got this mess sorted.

At that point Toshiko pointed out that the network would become visible when they began transmitting. 

Rose wanted so much to say something as Harriet answered her.  Did she really mean to sacrifice herself so the Doctor would be called?

“Marvellous woman,” Wilfred exclaimed, making Rose jump; she’d forgotten he was even there.  “I voted for her!”

“You did not!” Sylvia accused.

Rose didn’t have to see it to recognise a sheepish silence when she heard one.

She had a ringside seat as Torchwood went to work.  Jack began to give orders as Toshiko explained what they needed to do.  Even though Rose had never met this Toshiko Sato, she was worried about the scientist; she did look on her verge of collapse.  As the team went about their tasks, this universe’s version of Ianto Jones put a hand on Dr Sato’s shoulder. 

“You going to be alright?” he asked softly.  Rose was pretty sure he hadn’t meant for this sub-wave thing to pick up his words, but it had.

“I should be asking you that question,” Toshiko answered, her fingers still working the keys at the computer.

“I’m not as connected to the Earth as you are,” the other man said. 

“It’s…hard.” In the sudden bustle of activity at Torchwood, these two were a quiet spot in the storm.  “How about the others? Kathy?”

“They’re all down as well.  It’s…all four of you, Tosh.  The planet moving affected all of you.”

Rose frowned.  Something was definitely going on, and she really wished they’d say something that would clue her in.

“Ianto,” Martha butted in, “you and Tosh aren’t being as quiet as you think you are.”  She also sounded very worried.

Even over the sub-wave, Rose could see Toshiko – or Tosh, must have been her nickname – blushed slightly.  But then, she was so pale anything like that would have been obvious.  “Thanks, Martha.”

Harriet Jones wasn’t reacting to their conversation, but Rose could tell she was listening intently as she worked as well.  Sarah Jane had taken her son – and that must be new, because she certainly hadn’t mentioned that the last time they’d seen each other – off to the side and was speaking to him.  The young man nodded in understanding, and then they moved back to the centre of the monitor. 

Rose was just a bit bothered by Martha cutting the two of them off, just when the conversation had been getting interesting.

On the Torchwood side of the sub-wave came the sounds of the team calling out things, stuff that Rose didn’t quite get, but then technology wasn’t really her strong suit.  Yes, she’d been involved with the Dimension Cannon project, but she hadn’t done any of the actual work.  Mostly it was the scientists picking her brain for anything she might have overheard the Doctor say about multiple dimensions, and her hovering.  Actually, them calling to inform her that the cannon had activated had really been more of a courtesy, even though she’d long known she’d be the one to do the testing.  After all, it had been her dream to finally come home; any other application that might have come from the Dimension Cannon would have been up to Torchwood in her universe.

She trusted Pete to make the right decisions, but at the same time once she was back with the Doctor it wouldn’t really matter all that much to her.

Sarah Jane’s maybe computer is linked into things, thanks to Toshiko and Luke, and the sub-wave is opened.

“Sending the Doctor’s number,” Martha said, fiddling with her phone.

The number appeared on the screen.

Rose quickly put it into her phone.

A rather posh man’s voice said, “Calling the Doctor.”

“So am I.”  Rose was dialling even before she finished speaking.

Behind her, she heard the sound of other phones as well, and she knew that Wilfred and Sylvia were doing the same thing.

“I think we have something!” Rose heard Jack exclaim.

That proper British voice said it was raising the power to two hundred percent, and Rose watched as sparks flashed within the pane that showed Sarah Jane and Luke, and they both jumped back out of the way. 

Rose kept dialling.  She closed her eyes, coming as close to praying as she ever would, “Find me, Doctor.  Find me…”

“Ms Jones…Harriet…” Toshiko murmured, sounding very sorry, “a source as locked onto your signal.”  She paused, swallowing.  “They’ve found you.”

“I know,” the former Prime Minister said, continuing to work at her keyboard.  “I’m using the sub-wave to mask your transmission.  Keep going.”

Heart dropping into her shoes, Rose kept dialling and redialling, knowing she had to get through to the Doctor to stop what was about to happen.  Harriet had purposely set herself up to be tracked, she had to have done, just so Torchwood and Sarah Jane could continue to attempt to find the Time Lord.  They were going to come for her, and there wasn’t a thing anyone could do to stop it.

Unless the Doctor answered his damned phone.

A strident, “Exterminate!” came from the speaker, and a flash blotted out Harriet’s side of the connection for a brief second.  She didn’t stop working, however, and Rose could only watch as the inevitable occurred.

Harriet Jones was going to die.

The Daleks had managed to find her, despite everything.

Toshiko must have seen the same thing that Rose did, because she visibly flinched.  There was a gasp from Martha Jones, and Sarah Jane had a hand in front of her mouth.  This universe’s version of Ianto Jones was staring out of the screen, his old eyes sad, and, strangely, he began to sing softly in another language, one that Rose wished she had the TARDIS to translate.  The grief that it carried within it made tears well up in Rose’s eyes even though she had no idea what it was even about.

Ianto Jones was mourning.

Harriet Jones looked up even as she was pressing a button on her keyboard and pushing her chair away from her desk. 

“Doctor Sato, I’m transferring the sub-wave network to Torchwood.  Use it wisely.”  Her face was utterly calm as she stood.  “Good luck, and tell the Doctor he chose his companions well.” 

“Thank you for your service, Harriet Jones,” Jack said sombrely.  “It’s been an honour.”

Harriet nodded once in response.  Then she turned from the computer and stepped away, facing to the side where the flash had happened.  In the pane, her back was straight and proud as she faced down the Daleks that had blown their way into her home. 

She lifted her identification one more time.  “Harriet Jones…former Prime Minister.”

“Yes. We know who you are.”

It would have been funny if it hadn’t been stated so flatly by the horrific, metallic voice of a Dalek.  Rose wanted to do something, but she was trapped there, in the house of Donna Noble, witnessing this unspeakable tragedy with two near-strangers, and completely helpless.

“Oh, you know of no human,” Harriet returned defiantly.  “And that will be your downfall.”

There was a slight pause, as if the entire planet was holding its breath.


The section of screen that had once held Harriet Jones went blank.

A single tear tracked down Rose’s cheek.

Then the sub-wave network flickered.

And a very familiar face appeared just where Harriet’s had been.