Story: Home Is Where the Journey Begins
Rating: All ages
Word Count: 662
Author's Summary: Home becomes an adventure of its own, their destination most unhoped for. Home is the place where they pause and look into each other’s eyes, knowing what they have lived, and what still lies ahead. Home is the most thrilling thing of all. A little Ian/Barbara character exploration, set post their departure in "The Chase."
Characters/Pairings: Barbara/Ian, River
Recced because: One of the benefits of moderating the Teaspoon queue is getting to see great fic before anyone else on the site does, and I was especially pleased this one came my way; it's a story with rare sensitivity to language, and equal sensitivity to the relationship between the characters. Ian and Barbara's time on the TARDIS changed them, not just in how they perceive history and the world around them now that they're no longer traveling in time and space, but also in how they perceive each other. Adjustment to normal life is hard, but sharing it with someone you care about, and who knows what you've been through, makes it that much easier, and that much more wonderful.
That is another once constant, normal thing in their lives that is certainly no longer the same, and the best of all, as far as he’s concerned. Of course, in the quietness of Coal Hill, after many a cup of tea, a pleasant discussion, or a stolen glance, one teacher might have loved their colleague and seen the affection returned. But Ian Chesterton and Barbara Wright have seen it all. They walked the streets of Rome and Paris, the way no one alive ever could anymore, although there was nothing romantic whatsoever to what they went through there. They have known fear and relief, stood under the light of other suns and, eventually, found their way home. And yet, the journey never ended.