Fandom: Doctor Who
Summary: Does what it says on the tin, really.
Warnings: Various shippiness, implicit, explicit etc.
For the Mickathon, in particular doyle_sb4, who asked for Mickey travelling in the TARDIS. An AU branching off from canon or Five Things would be excellent. Mickey/Ten would be marvellous. Here you go, my dear!
“You can bring him too, if you want,” the Doctor had said. “Never know. Might be good for him. Help him grow a spine.”
Now Mickey was travelling through time and space with an alien madman and his girlfriend (who he was beginning to suspect liked the aforementioned alien madman a little more than she should). And what with all the excitement, he still hadn’t found time to be properly offended by that spine comment.
Currently, he was seated in some strange medical bay, filled with all sorts of terrifying instruments, while the Doctor sorted out the burn he’d got up his arm from dragging the Mox of Balhoon out of the way of a solar flare. More than the little freak deserved, in Mickey’s opinion, since it’d spat in his eye. He’d have to bring up the subject of favouritism at some point – Rose getting a plant and him getting alien gob on his face hardly seemed fair.
Of course, he’d have to wait for his arm to stop feeling like it was going to drop off first. The Doctor’d spread a numbing gel on it, which helped, and now he was waving some strange gadget around – a dermal regenerator, he’d called it. A comfortable, if not entirely relaxed silence had fallen. Mickey almost jumped when the Doctor spoke.
“You did a good job back there,” he said, not looking up. Mickey was glad of that. He wasn’t sure he could meet the other man’s eyes after seeing the way he dealt with Cassandra.
“Didn’t do anything,” Mickey muttered. He wished he had. Wished he’d been the one to save Rose, at least.
“You did a lot,” the Doctor assured him. “The Mox of Balhoon’d probably be dead if it weren’t for you. Couple of others, too.”
“We’d all be dead if it wasn’t for you.” He looked away awkwardly, studying the clinical white of the walls in here, different from everywhere else. “Me ‘n Rose ‘n everyone.”
“Yeah, but that’s what I do. ‘S not what you do. Least, it wasn’t.” The dermal regenerator clicked off and feeling slowly returned to Mickey’s arm. He flexed his fingers experimentally.
“S’alright.” The Doctor set the machine aside. He shoved his hands in his pockets and turned to go, pausing at the door. “I’m glad you came.”
Mickey thought for a moment.
“Me too,” he said, a little surprised.
The Doctor flashed him a crooked smile and disappeared.
The missile had killed the Slitheen.
It had killed Rose and Harriet too.
The Doctor wasn’t dead. He’d turned up a couple of days later in the same clothes and a different face, his eyes hollow and his expression pale and gaunt. A new face, but still his.
Jackie had screamed at him, raged at him, slapped him and kicked him, and Mickey had let her, with a grim sense of satisfaction, until he’d realised that the Doctor wasn’t fighting back, or even attempting to dodge. That the Doctor was just standing there and taking it, as if it was something he deserved.
He’d hustled him back to his flat, safe from Jackie’s wrath. Made him a strong cup of tea.
“I shouldn’t have let her choose,” the Doctor said brokenly, staring at his tea as if hoping it might try and beat him up a bit too. “I should have just said no. Found some other way.”
Mickey shifted uncomfortably, unsure what to do seeing the Doctor this vulnerable, this broken. Realising how much he must have loved Rose, how important she was to him.
“I was the one who pushed the button,” he muttered, staring at his hands, his feet, the carpet, anywhere but the Doctor.
“Only ‘cause I told you to.”
He had a point, Mickey thought.
The Doctor stayed with him until the funeral. He was quiet, morose, but never as screamingly lonely as that night. Mickey felt like he was walking on eggshells, wondering who would be the first to crack. His flat suddenly felt too small. London felt too crowded. Even football was more because of habit than because he really cared.
He and the Doctor developed a sort of understanding, a comfortable companionship – they’d both loved Rose, they’d both lost her, they both tried to shoulder some of the blame.
They stood side-by-side at the funeral, as Rose was buried next to her Dad and Jackie broke down into sobs that were heartbreaking.
At some point, the Doctor grabbed his hand. Even after he noticed, Mickey didn’t let go. The grip was something that held him together.
“Come with me,” the Doctor said. Let me show you the life Rose was willing to die for. Let me give you something precious to make up for what I took from you.
It wouldn’t be enough. Nothing in the whole stinking Universe would be enough. But the Doctor was lonely and he might be an alien, but he understood. Everything. About Rose and life and those eggshells he’d been walking on. And if he stayed he’d just stick. Rot and fester in the ‘then’ instead of moving on to face the ‘now’ head on. And that’s not what Rose would have done.
Rose would’ve taken the Doctor’s hand and flown off to the stars. Rose had. And now he did. Because he couldn’t face his flat. Because he couldn’t face work. Or Jackie. Or pubs and football. Because it was what Rose wanted.
Because it was what he wanted.
It was, Mickey thought, easier to accept the Doctor than it was to accept Jack. After all, how could he compete with an alien who had his own spaceship? And it helped that he had a big nose and sticky-out ears. Clearly Rose just didn’t appreciate chiselled features such as his own, and preferred big nosed aliens from Manchester.
Jack was a human. From the future, admittedly, but without his gadgets, he was just a regular bloke. Only, he had movie star good looks and there was a certain air about him that sparked distinctly unwelcome feelings in Mickey. Rose had assured him it was perfectly normal – not even the Doctor could completely resist Jack – and that had not helped him feel any better. And if the Doctor, with all his alien superiority couldn’t resist Jack, there was no way Rose could, so Mickey had to be there to protect her from his unwelcome advances (there were no other motives at all – just pure concern for Rose’s wellbeing. Really!), never mind Trisha Delaney ( who’d had a bit of an acne outbreak anyway before he’d left, so he didn’t really have any pressing desire to head home.)
After about a month (you couldn’t really tell for certain how much time had passed on the TARDIS. And time seemed to alternately drag and fly by depending on which was exactly the opposite of what he wanted it to do, but a month seemed a sensible enough estimation) of Jack parading around in gradually more flustering outfits that Mickey tried his very best to ignore while he valiantly tried to distract Rose from them; as well as suggestive comments which made even the Doctor blush, Mickey began to suspect that Jack was trying to make him crack and leave so Rose would be all his. The American had even begun trying to corner him in tight spaces, hovering very close to him and brushing against him when there really wasn’t any need. Jack was very clearly trying to drive him barmy.
The Doctor found him hiding in the wardrobe. He looked amused when Mickey twitched at the sound of the door opening, then relaxed when he saw it was the Doctor.
“Alright there?” the Doctor asked cheerfully, running his hand idly over some of the clothes on the rail beside him.
“Yeah,” Mickey said, standing and brushing off his clothes with as much dignity as he could muster. “Just trying to pull myself together a bit before…”
“Before you protect Rose from the Big Bad Wolf?” The Doctor grinned at him, and it was the grin of someone who knows something you don’t and is enjoying it immensely. “You needn’t bother, you know.”
Mickey eyed him suspiciously. It would be highly unlikely that Jack’d been kicked off the TARDIS, and that was the only thing that was likely to stop him.
“’Cause it’s not Rose he’s interested in,” the Doctor said, with great smugness. Realisation dawned slowly and Mickey went very pale.
“Oh,” said Mickey weakly, sitting down again.
“Thought you might like to know.” The Doctor grinned again, and wandered off. Mickey wondered how long he could stay in here if he tried hard enough.
Mickey liked this Doctor more than the other one. The old Doctor grew on you, and Mickey’d grudgingly admitted he was alright, but this new Doctor he actually quite liked. He’d seen this Doctor save the world (in his pajamas, as well!) and he wasn’t quite so ‘Holier-than-thou’.
It helped somewhat that while he was prettier than the last Doctor, he still had a pretty sizeable nose.
This new Doctor seemed to like him more as well. Each time he and Rose came back, he asked if Mickey wanted to come along, and each time it got harder to say no. There was something charming about him, something that got under the skin and teased and pulled, drawing people to him. Mickey wondered if it was an alien thing, but then decided that it must be a new Doctor thing, since the old Doctor had been nothing like this.
When he eventually said yes, he didn’t even think about it. It had been inevitable, anyway. At least he’d done it in his own time.
“See?” the Doctor said, as the three of them strolled through the Keshius Palace Gardens, surrounded by explosions of colour and shape. The Doctor’s hand was linked with Rose’s. Mickey found that he didn’t really mind. “It’s not all running and explosions and aliens trying to kill you.”
“No,” Mickey agreed, grinning at him. “But most of it is.”
“But most isn’t all,” the Doctor shot back.
“’Course,” Rose commented, swinging hers and the Doctor’s hands between them playfully. “Travelling with you, a person could easily think that all the universe ever does is almost end, and that aliens are always going to try and kill you the minute you say hello to them.”
“I think I can be forgiven for thinking that,” Mickey added. “Since the only time I ever saw you before was when something was trying to take over the planet.”
“Actually, that’s right.” The Doctor frowned slightly. “I don’t think your planet likes me, which is bloody cheek after everything I’ve done for it. Mickey!” He snapped on a broad grin and let go of Rose’s hand to grab Mickey’s shoulders. “Close your eyes, I want to try something.”
“What?” Mickey asked suspiciously. Rose caught his eye over the Doctor’s shoulder and shrugged.
“Just close your eyes and you’ll see. Well, you won’t see, since you’ll have your eyes closed, but you know what I mean.”
“If I close my eyes,” Mickey said with a grin. “Will you shut up?”
“Yes! Now get on with it!”
Mickey obediently closed his eyes. For a moment, nothing happened, then he jumped when he felt a pair of cool lips against his own. Lips which didn’t belong to Rose.
He tried to pull back, but the hands on his shoulders held him in place for a moment longer before letting him go. He stared at the Doctor, who just grinned cheekily at him.
“What was that?!” he demanded after a stunned pause.
“Just testing out something,” the Doctor said cheerfully, taking Rose’s hand again and setting off to continue their walk.
“What?” Mickey jogged to catch up with them.
“Something Jack told me – always try to travel with people you wouldn’t mind snogging if you needed to.” He flashed Mickey a grin. “Mind you, ‘snog’ wasn’t the word he used, but I thought that’d be easier to test right now than - ”
“So you’ve snogged Rose, then?” He suspected, but Rose had never said.
“No,” Rose said, at the same time the Doctor said “Yep!”
“What?” Rose asked, frowning at him. “When?”
“You had other things on – and in – your mind at the time,” the Doctor said, amused. “But you passed.”
“Oh great,” Rose huffed. “Glad I made the grade.”
The Doctor squeezed her hand and grinned cheekily at her, his other arm draped over Mickey’s shoulder.
“Congratulations,” he said cheerfully. “I think we’re going to get on just fine.”
“It’s not what you think, you know,” the Doctor said conversationally.
“What isn’t?” Mickey asked, blowing gently on his mug of tea, as he and the Doctor sat in Jackie’s flat, waiting for Rose and her mother to return.
“All this.” The Doctor waved a hand idly. “The travelling and saving the world and so on.”
“If it’s not what I think,” Mickey said. “What is it?”
The Doctor told him. Mickey choked on his tea.
The Doctor patted him on the back until he had finished coughing, then moved away politely when Mickey fixed him with a wild, wide-eyed stare.
“What!?” he screeched.
“You think I’d go around saving this world all the time if there wasn’t something in it for me?” the Doctor asked with a cheeky grin. “This planet – you humans. There’s no other species like you in the rest of the Universe.”
“You seriously expect me to believe,” Mickey said. “That you only come here to recruit for sex?”
“Why wouldn’t you?” the Doctor responded. “Look at Rose, look at Jack. I mean, I’ve had a couple travel with me who you wouldn’t think would be - ”
“Alright! Alright! I get the picture.”
“You humans are great,” the Doctor insisted, his grin still wide and his hair still charmingly ruffled. “There are species that can go for hours longer than you, or do things that are physically impossible for you, but there’s no other species in the Universe that’s willing to experiment so much when it comes to sex. You lot’ll try anything!”
“I wouldn’t,” Mickey muttered.
“If I promised you a three-hour orgasm,” the Doctor said. “You’d do anything.”
Mickey glanced at him, curious and horrified at the same time.
“Three hours?” he said doubtfully.
“If you do it right.” The Doctor grinned toothily.
Mickey looked back down at his tea, then quickly back at the Doctor when he remembered something.
“You asked me to come with you!” he spluttered, a little revolted by the idea.
“In both senses.” The Doctor leered at him. “Offer’s still open.”
Mickey spluttered at him.
“Three hours,” the Doctor reminded him, coaxing, teasing. “And Rose learnt to do this incredible thing with her tongue…”
Mickey swallowed, painfully, and stared pointedly at his tea.
He didn’t turn up for work the next day.