Word Count: 57583
Author's Summary: The Doctor hasn't seen Charlotte Pollard for years, and a lot has changed for both of them since they said their goodbyes. It's been said that love conquers all. But can love conquer the Viyrans?
Characters/Pairings: Charley Pollard/Eighth Doctor
Warnings: Explicit sex
Recced because: Extremely well written and plotted, this fic could almost be a direct transcript of a Big Finish audio. The relationship dynamics between Charley and Eight are pretty much spot on, as well as the addition of tension between the two after such a long period of time. If I say too much more I'll ruin it, but just know that you are in extremely safe hands with this fic.
The console was humming softly, an ambient sound that Charley had never noticed before in her Doctor's Tardis. This room, white-walled and sterile-looking, was still so unfamiliar to her. Gone were the enormous, industrial-meets-gothic designs and architecture of the Tardis she had known. Instead, her surroundings were small and very plain looking in comparison. White and grey, tiled and smooth with few shadows. A small, sophisticated looking console. It looked like an enormous computer, not like the oddly shaped and colored controls of the Tardis she had travelled in for so long. But it was the same Tardis. The same but different. Like the Doctor...
Charley wasn't expecting a response. She wasn't surprised when she didn't get one. Sentient or not, the ship couldn't actually talk. She knew that. Taking a deep, shaky breath, she straightened her posture as she stepped closer, running her hand lightly over the edge of the console.
"I know you're supposed to be... alive or something. In a manner of speaking, anyway. I don't know if that means you can hear me, but right now, I haven't really got anyone else to talk to. So I guess... it's just you and me."
The hum continued. Other than that, the room was silent. Eerily so. She sighed deeply as she continued, watching her hand as it trailed along the controls, careful not to change or press anything. The last thing she needed was to accidentally send them on a collision course with the nearest star.
"He said once that you're timeless," she whispered. "The Doctor, I mean. That you see everything that was and everything that will be just as if it's happening right now. If that's true, then you at least should know who I am. It's not much, I suppose, but it's more than anyone else knows."
She bit her bottom lip, wishing for all the world that she had something - someone - to look at, other than a big grey computer with a clear cylinder in the middle. Something that could respond. Some way to know she was being heard. But there was nothing.
She sighed as she leaned forward, letting her blonde hair fall in her face as she took in a deep breath and continued quickly, without thinking. What did it really matter if anyone was listening? Probably better if she wasn't heard. It didn't matter. She still needed to talk, to get it all off of her chest before it ate her alive.
"I'm so alone here. Everything is so unfamiliar and I... well, I can't exactly talk to the Doctor. Even if it didn't violate the laws of space and time, what would I say? Yes, Doctor, someday we're going to fall in love and you're going to..."
She trailed off as the memories hit her, more powerful than she'd been expecting. Trapped in a world of sensory deprivation. The first time she had realized that he loved her… "I sacrificed myself for you, to save your life! And I did it gladly. I thought I'd never see you again, but it wouldn't matter so long as I knew you were safe."
"I don't understand. You're saying you did care for me after all! That you... loved me?"
"Of course I loved you!" His anger caught her off guard, and she recoiled instinctively. "I killed myself for you, didn't I! Of course I loved you. Of course... I love you."
He'd loved her. He'd never meant to, but he'd fallen in love. And she'd fallen just as hard. Her closest friend. The line between friends and lovers was blurred somewhere in the Divergent Universe...