I usually don't sit down and write a whole oneshot in one sitting, but hubby starts his new position tomorrow, so he's a nervous wreck, so I just sat down and typed while he played Words with Friends. He's still talking a mile a minute (honestly he reminds me of Ten when he gets to rambling on and on) and I really don't know what he's talking about. At the moment he's using Stella to put in his work schedule via Siri. And jailbreaking his iPhone. Really don't know...
Anyhow, we're all going to pretend there's a church down the road from the Noble house. There is in my fictional world. =D
As always, I don't own Ten, Donna, or Doctor Who. The BBC does. Please read and enjoy...
She was gone. Belle was well and truly gone. Sylvia paced the sidewalk in front of the house, while Wilf once again searched the house inside. It had been simple enough. The Doctor and Donna were needed on the Oodsphere for something or other (Sylvia couldn’t remember what, and nor did she care right now), it was a nice spring day, and the three were going to go up the hill for lunch. Sylvia had planned on ham sandwiches, but discovered Wilf had eaten the ham. This had started an argument, and then Belle who had been in the front room listening to music, had just disappeared.
Sylvia had searched the house, Wilf had searched the back yard, and now they had switched. Sylvia was out front, and Wilf was in the house. Seeing nothing outside (and dammit why weren’t the neighbors home in case they’d seen Belle), she went back inside where Wilf was coming back downstairs. “Did you…?” she halfheartedly asked, her shoulders slumping at Wilf’s negative headshake. “Where on Earth could she be?” she paled and gripped her father’s shoulders. “Oh my God, what if she’s not on Earth at all? What if some other aliens took her?”
“Calm down, my girl,” Wilf patted her hands. “We’ll find her. She’s still on Earth. Wouldn’t we have heard a ship or whatnot?”
Sylvia thought for a moment then nodded. She grabbed her mobile. “I should call the police.”
Belle had heard the arguing over the ham, and rolled her eyes. This was a common argument in this house, and frankly she didn’t have the patience for it right now. It was warm outside, and she wanted to go up the hill, and take in the sounds and smells of spring. As the voices escalated, she went to the front door, opened it, felt it was warm enough for no jacket, and quietly left. She had learned how many paces it was from the front of the house to the sidewalk, and from there to the car. Counting under her breath she walked to the sidewalk, and then, hearing bell-like sounds from her left, she turned left and headed in that direction. She was pretty sure there was a church there, but having never gone by herself, she didn’t know what direction exactly. So she just followed the sounds, while listening for traffic and paying attention to the shimmers and outlines she saw via the sensory web.
The sound of the TARDIS pulled Sylvia out of her panic, and got Wilf to move to the kitchen window. The blue police box materialized, and the Doctor and Donna emerged. Sylvia rushed to the kitchen and went about getting some tea ready if only to keep herself busy.
“I’ll go look outside again,” Wilf said quietly as he left the kitchen in a hurry.
“Where’s Gramps going?” Donna asked while she and the Doctor came inside. “And in such a hurry. Didn’t even say hello.”
“Um…well…you see,” Sylvia started, nervousness on her face.
“Mum.” Donna gave her a look.
“We’ve been looking, and I swear we were just about to call the authorities.”
“Looking for what? Why do you need the authorities,” Donna looked around, before her eyes widened and she gripped one of the chair backs. “Where’s Belle?”
Belle stopped when the bell sounds were loudest, and then she heard stringed instruments, an organ and voices. She turned in the direction of the new sounds, shuffling her feet, as the ground was different from the sidewalk. Carefully she took another step forward, then another. “Do you need some help?” she jumped at the voice that had spoken near her, having not heard the person approach, she was so intent on safely moving forward.
“Yes, please,” she answered quietly. She felt the person take her elbow and lead her forward.
“There’s some steps here, so careful,” the person, she now knew from the pitch of the voice to be a woman. “Can you see then?”
“I’m blind,” Belle answered. “Can only see shimmers with my vest.”
“Shimmers with your vest? That’s a pretty fancy vest then isn’t it?”
Belle cringed at that, remembering that her vest or sensory web was from the future, and Mr. Doctor had said she probably shouldn’t mention what it was or did beyond being a glittery vest. “Oh, it’s just a vest. It has glitter on it,” she said quickly.
The woman didn’t say anything for a little bit. Then she tugged on Belle’s elbow. “Steps here. Up you go.”
Belle stepped up when the woman indicated she should, and soon the world dimmed a bit through the web indicating they were inside the church now. “Can you find a seat for yourself?” the woman asked.
“Yes, thank you,” Belle turned towards the woman’s voice and gave what she hoped was an adequate smile. When she felt the woman let go of her elbow, she moved forward herself, reaching out and feeling the back of a pew. Moving around it, she felt her way to its front, and seated herself, settling in to listen to the lovely music coming from the front of the church.
“You lost her,” Donna sank into one of the kitchen chairs. The Doctor moved behind her, and placed his hands on her shoulders. “You lost Belle.”
“We didn’t mean to,” Sylvia was wringing her hands, also sitting down. Wilf was standing near her. “We were talking in the kitchen, and then she was just…gone.”
“How long what?”
“How long since she’s been missing?” Donna glared at her mother.
“I don’t know exactly. An hour? Two maybe? We’ve been looking.”
“And you didn’t call the police right away?”
“It’s only been a couple hours,” Sylvia was starting to get a little defensive. “And I was getting ready to, when you two came home.”
“CALL THEM!” Donna shrieked. “Or better yet, I will,” she stood abruptly and yanked the phone off the wall. Fumbling around, she dropped it a couple of times. The Doctor took it from her and made the call himself. He argued with who was on the line, and finally slammed the phone down after shouting they were useless. “Well?” she asked when he was done.
“They have to wait 24 hours,” he muttered.
“WHAT? Twenty four hours. Twenty four hours!? Are they daft? She’s blind! She’s out there, alone, and she’s blind. She can’t wait twenty four hours. We can’t wait twenty four hours.”
“Donna,” Sylvia reached out. “Just calm down. We’ll find her.”
“Calm down. My daughter is missing, she’s alone, she’s blind, and you want me to calm down?” Donna pounded her fist on the table, shaking the tea cups, and knocking a few things to the floor. “Calm down,” she spat, before starting to cry. The Doctor took her in his arms, holding her close.
“We’re so sorry,” Wilf murmured.
“I know. It was an accident,” the Doctor said. “I also know that we’ll be looking for her until we find her, police or not. I plan to see if the TARDIS can trace her sensory web,” he adjusted his hold on Donna, dropping a kiss to her temple, as her crying started to slow. She refused to let go of the Time Lord though, placing a return kiss on his neck.
When the music stopped the fourth time since she’d been there, Belle could hear people moving more than when there were breaks, so she knew it they were done. And now the consequences of her adventure made themselves fully known, as she had no idea how to get back home. She hadn’t counted the paces on the sidewalk from the Noble house to this church. She wasn’t even sure how to get to the right sidewalk. She knew Mr. Doctor and Miss Donna’s mobile numbers, but had no way to call them. They weren’t home anyhow. She sank back against the pew back as she realized she’d left without telling anyone. Sighing as she listened to people leave, she wondered what she would do.
“Belle?” a voice said, surprising her and making her jump a little. “It’s Mrs. Aren from across the road. What are you doing here?”
“I heard the bells. I followed them here, and heard the music.”
“Where is Donna, or that nice John fellow she’s with?” Belle had to think for a moment before remembering that Sylvia’s friends knew Mr. Doctor as John Smith.
“They had to go away for a little while.”
“So you came by yourself?”
“Yes. Do you know how I can get home?”
“How about I just call Sylvia to come get you?”
“Alright. I might be in trouble, mightn’t I?”
“A wee bit, I’m afraid,” Mrs. Aren pulled out her mobile and placed the call.
When the phone rang, they all leapt for it, and Sylvia was first. “Suzette? Now isn’t a good time, Belle’s gone missing,” she said quickly when the caller identified themselves. They could hear Suzette speaking again, and a look a relief came over Sylvia’s features. “Oh, Suzette, thank you so much. We’ll be right there,” she hung up and turned to the others. “Belle’s down at the church. She heard the bells, and followed the sound from what she told Suzette.”
Donna had run out of the house as soon as Sylvia had said the church, the Doctor close at her heels. They kept running all the way down the street, to the church, where inside, Suzette sat on a pew next to Belle.
Belle turned behind her at the sound of fast footfalls, and recognized the two shimmers that approached her. She stood, and not a moment too soon, as Donna had her in her arms holding her tightly. “Never do this again,” Donna said, releasing her and placing her hands on the girl’s cheeks. She kissed her forehead. “Please never do this again,” she took Belle back in her arms.
“I’m sorry,” Belle murmured against Donna’s chest. “I heard the bells, and I wanted to hear more. I didn’t know how to get back home though. I forgot to count my steps.”
“It’s alright, you’re found now,” she stroked Belle’s hair gently.
Donna released her and the Doctor took his own hug, kissing the top of her head. He looked over at Suzette. “Thank you, Suzette, for looking out for her,” he said. “I’m glad you were here.”
“You’re welcome, John. Now you and Donna get this young lady home, and maybe have a discussion with her on walking off by herself.”
“We most certainly will,” the Doctor agreed. The three of them left the church and headed back to Wilf and Sylvia’s house. Belle hoped she wouldn’t be in too much trouble, though she figured there would be some extra chores around the house and TARDIS that would suddenly need doing. She did know one thing. She was never going to just up and leave again, she’d learned her lesson.