Chapter Three

Rose walked into the kitchen in search of a cup of tea. She decided to put the kettle on in case Alan wanted some. While she was running the tap, Rose felt Alan come up behind her while their dogs flanked them. Rose smiled when Alan put his chin on the top of her head and sighed contentedly through his nose while he put his arms around her stomach. Rose patted his hand and kept it there while Alan kissed the top of her head.

"You mean the universe to me, Starlight," he murmured while Rose leaned back into his embrace. "When I said we could grow old together, I never imagined that might mean centuries but being with you, you've made the centuries fly as if they were mere minutes."

"And you've kept things interesting," Rose said as Alan tightened his embrace. "You're a bit exasperating at times but I wouldn't trade you for anything."

"Not even Jack?"

He giggled when Rose titled her head up at him.

"You still think I'm shagging him, eh?" she said.

"I know you have affairs when I'm off milking the cows. You have whole harems in here; I just haven't caught you in the act yet. I need to borrow K9 from Sarah; he'll tell me what's really going on in here."

"And what will you do when you find out?" Rose said, reaching up to stroke his cheek.

"Join in," Alan said. "I'll have to push everyone out of the way, of course. And I'll have to beat Jack off with a prybar but it's doable."

"Just make them all go splody, dear."

"Nah, I like them as people. I'd rather not splody them."

Alan jerked his head around when he heard a knock on the door.

"Whoo! We have company! Maybe it's Brother coming to his senses!" he yelled as he ran off, leaving Rose to giggle to herself while she put the kettle under the tap.

Alan sped towards the door, threw it open and stopped short when he saw Hope standing there.

"Hi," she said. "I am here because Daddy's busy and can't come and he doesn't want me going to tell the stupid people they're stupid and embarrass him."

She laughed when Alan slammed the door shut in her face. She heard Rose in the distance ask Alan who that was before he opened the door again with a huge grin on his face.

"Step inside," he said, gesturing to the interior as he stepped aside.

Hope walked inside and waved at Rose when she came into the lounge to see what was going on.

"Brother sent a tiny replacement to represent him and also because it seems Hopey was about to tell the berks off," Alan said to his wife as he shut the door.

"It's stupid being there," Hope said, walking towards Rose. "It's boring and they keep on asking Daddy questions and I fell asleep waiting for him. I want some fun."

"Well, come inside the kitchen. I was about to make some tea," Rose said, putting her arm around him. "You can help us put up the Christmas tree if you want."

"Ooo, I can help. We put up our tree the other day," Hope said as Alan followed them into the kitchen.

She petted the dogs when they hurried to greet her the moment they entered the kitchen. Rose put the kettle on the burner while Alan looked in the fridge.

"Hungry then?" he asked Hope.

"A bit. It's been ages since Daddy started talking and I think I missed lunch," Hope said, walking over to him.

"Miss lunch? He's neglectful, he is," Alan said, peering into the fridge. "I s'pose we can fix you up a couple of sandwiches and some soup for the moment. Is that okay?"

Hope nodded and helped him make lunch while Rose finished making the tea. When everything was finished, they sat at the table and ate lunch while the dogs ate their food. While Rose ate her turkey sandwich, she felt a nudge from the Doctor and tuned into his mind.

Is Hope there, he thought to her.

Yeah, she's here. We fixed her lunch.

We're not inconveniencing you? She wanted to leave this place and I thought she could visit you and Alan.

No, it's fine. Alan was hungry for company. They can put up the Christmas tree after we eat.

Good. She's the youngest and waiting wore her out. She was asleep when I went on break. I'm stuck here for the moment but she doesn't have to be here with me.

How long are you going to be there? Rose thought to him.

Not much longer if I have anything to say about it. I'm knackered as well and this is ridiculous. Just give me a few more hours and we'll be round.

Come in through the garage, I'll leave it unlocked.

The Doctor thanked her and cut off the conversation. She told Alan what was going on and he beamed.

"Hurray, your father is coming to his senses," Alan said to Hope.

"Good," Hope said as he helped her aunt and uncle clean up. "Those people are stupid. They hate Daddy."

"They hate him?" Rose said, looking over her shoulder while she put some of the food back in the fridge. "How'd ya mean?"

"Mommy said they give him a hard time and look down on him. I think because he's important and done more things than they did. They get really snotty sometimes when they talk to him."

Rose and Alan shared a glance.

"He calls them berks but I didn't know they were showing him disrespect and giving him a hard time," Rose said to Alan.

"I told you he needs to stop kowtowing to them and acting like this project of theirs is all important. He has better things to do than suffer through the third degree with those losers. He wants to preserve Old Gallifrey's memory and they're taking advantage of that. And if Hope is right, they're not gonna listen to him. They'll make him look like a fool to the rest of the planet. He needs to stop humoring them."

Alan paused when suddenly an idea struck him. Rose raised her eyebrow when she saw the evil grin spread over his face.

"Alan, whatever you're thinking of…" she said.

"I'm thinking of doing a bit of a switch with Brother and answering their questions in my own inimitable fashion," he said, walking over to Rose. "Starlight, it'd be different if they treated him with respect but they're not doing that and they won't honor his legacy. So why not have some fun with this?"

"Yeah, Uncle Alan, go tease 'em and make them mad," Hope said, tugging on his hand.

"Starlight, let Brother come here and relax, I'll handle these idiots," Alan said.

Rose thought that over before pulling the Doctor and his family's minds forward and explaining Alan's plan to him. Alan tapped into Rose's mind and listened into the conference call, hoping his brother would go along with his plan. When she finished, there was silence from the Doctor but Rose sensed his hesitation and she knew he was weighing the need to get back at the disrespectful idiots with the possible damage Alan might do with his phony interview.

Look, Doctor, Rose thought to him. Normally, I would tell Alan to back down but if what Hope says is true, I have a feeling this museum thing of theirs might disgrace you. If all they're doing is trying to humiliate you, I say let Alan have his fun and we can go to the council and alert them. If they're trying to do damage to Old Gallifrey's history, they could interfere and shut them down.

The Doctor didn't answer and Rose heard his children urging him to go along with the plan.


The Doctor looked at his wife.

"What do you think? You haven't said anything," he said to her.

"Hon, even though I'm cringing thinking about what Alan will say to them, I think you should let him do it. You should have been back in there but you're still in here with us and I know it's because you're stalling for time. You know they're laughing at you behind your back, I say unleash Alan on the little snotrags and let them get a taste of their own medicine. Take the children and go, I'll stay here for the moment so they won't get suspicious."

"No, you come with me. You need to rest as well. Alan can handle himself," the Doctor said. "Okay, I'll agree to this scheme just because I want to teach these yobs a lesson."

"Thank God," Tara said while her sisters nodded.


Hope cheered when the Doctor told Alan to go ahead with his plan.

"Get em, Uncle Alan," she said as she hopped up and down with excitement.

"Alan, don't go too far with this. Don't do anything that will land the Doctor in court," Rose said.

"Moi?" Alan said innocently as he pointed to himself.

"Yes, vous!" Rose said. "Humiliate them but don't anger them to the point…"

"They're not gonna sue the Doctor. They wouldn't dare," Alan said. "Besides, I have no intention of doing anything other than giving them a bunch of fake answers to their questions."

"Can I come with you? I wanna listen," Hope said, tugging on his hand.

"No, that would look odd if you suddenly showed interest in the interview. I can put a hidden camera on my body and record it for you to watch later. Okay?"

Hope nodded. Alan grinned at Rose.

"Blimey, this is going to be one hell of an interview," she said while Alan sniggered.

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