elisi: (Roda)
[personal profile] elisi
Master post for the whole verse here. This is a one-shot (in two parts) dealing with the Seeker's second regeneration, and companion fic to [livejournal.com profile] luckweaver’s Goodbye, Lover

Part One here

Summary: He woke to devastation. (How the Seeker regenerated the second time)
Setting: Some 30 years prior to A Good Day.
Characters: 3rd Seeker (OC), Roda (OC), Jack, the Master, the Doctor (11th)
Rating: PG-13 (i guess)
Word count: 1400 words (altogether)
Dedication: Happy birthday [livejournal.com profile] enevarim

We Might as Well be Strangers

We might as well be strangers in another town
We might as well be living in a another time

We might as well be strangers in another town
We might as well be living in a different world

We might as well be strangers
Be strangers
For all I know of you now



“I just don’t want you anymore,” Roda said; upset or angry or maybe both, almost physically recoiling from his touch.

Another failure, but on a much deeper level, and not one that could be mended the way his body had knitted back together…

The reason why she had such an innate aversion for his new face would probably reveal itself in time - it could be that he reminded her of someone who had hurt her… Or maybe he would go on to upset her in future? Whatever the cause for her withdrawal, it was not for him to ask, nor for her to reveal. But it closed a chapter, leaving him with only devastation for a second time, surveying the broken remains of what had once been something approaching a relationship.

Had it been vanity again, thinking that it was him she wanted, the constant beneath the changing faces? (She was the Redjay, he should count himself lucky that she’d chosen to perch by him, even for a short while.)

Returning home, he stopped at a lake, throwing away the badly fitting clothing before swimming for more than an hour. The cold water refreshing and stinging his newly born skin.

He studied his reflection in the water as much as he was able; shifting, shimmering, fragmented. Black unruly hair, green eyes, a face still foreign and unknown…

One of the suns set, and he could glimpse stars at the edge of the horizon. The loneliness was biting, but in that moment he also knew the cure.

Creating a TARDIS couldn’t be called easy, but compared to a Matrix it was relatively straightforward. He would sit in his garden under his plum tree, working out the schematics, half-smiling to himself as he remembered his childhood, some of the human children thinking him so odd he ‘should go build himself a robot pal’. Little did they know.

One day he found a dark purple coat at the back of a wardrobe, and liked it. It set off his eyes nicely.

He went to see Jack, but - as he had more than half-suspected - Jack was ‘off’ with him as well. Analysing Jack’s behaviour, there was awkwardness, but also (beneath that) something the Seeker categorised as ‘attraction’ - appreciation in glances and halted touches, so subtle that Jack might not even be aware of them himself. The Seeker pretended not to notice, and left with a half-smile and a nod, by now automatically covering the discomfort with detachment. Jack’s loyalty was forever, the Seeker knew that, whether brotherly or otherwise. Still - he’d keep a distance this time round.

His father remarked that he missed the red hair.

Roda, when asked for help with the more complicated mechanics, gave it without question, but also without any warmth. As if they were practically strangers.

The Doctor - when he accidentally landed in the Seeker’s courtyard one afternoon, clearly expecting to be somewhere else - was wearing a purple coat instead of tweed and thought a TARDIS was an excellent idea. He also approved of the Seeker’s coat, and the Seeker let him have his moment. The invisible wall between himself and those closest to him was beginning to feel like protection; even the Doctor had betrayed him, and not just once.

The silence and the quiet seemed to settle within him, growing deeper with every solitary day. The suns would rise and the suns would set, celestial beauty that marked out his time; and in the cold nights that followed the warm days, he heard whispers from his earliest days.

“The last of humanity screaming at the dark.”

“There was no solution, no diamonds. Just the dark and the cold.”

For the first time he wondered what lay at the end of the universe, which had also been the beginning of him - a sight that had driven his father to pity, his mother to madness. And at the end of which undertaking lay a failed and futile attempt at empire, a broken timeline from which he had been born.

It seemed a fitting maiden voyage for his TARDIS.

He could never pinpoint the day or the hour when the symbiotic link had started. It had grown, unseen, like a seed sending out roots below ground, and by the time he became aware of it the only thing he could think to compare it to was falling in love. Except it was a love of the kind he had always shied away from, ever since the unforgivable mistakes of his early youth that still haunted him. And yet here it was - as simple, and vital, as breathing. He laid his hands on the central console (white, but with a cozy golden glow) and knew he would never more be lonely. And - for the first time since he’d woken in the remains of what had once almost been a Matrix - smiled.

Before he set off, he took a final look at his home. Watched as the planet turned, golden and warm and singular. Something from nothing. His own creation.

But he now fully understood the knife edge between creation and catastrophe, how one could turn from the former to the latter with no warning, a single misstep searing untold destruction into the world; into his own flesh.

As he surveyed the crater where he had met his doom he nodded in silent satisfaction. He’d sent the droids to clear up the wreckage, but also to create a message and reminder for himself, using the shrapnel as building blocks. A little like the geoglyphs of ancient Earth, readable only from space. It stood out starkly against the orange dust, a somewhat grandiose monument to what had been.

(The Seeker’s Folly)

Lesson learned.

And without a sound the time capsule vanished into the unknowable space between what was and what would be.

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