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22 April 2011 @ 05:42 am
Fic: ‘Goodbye, Sarah Jane.’  
Title: Goodbye, Sarah Jane.
Fandom: Doctor Who & the Sarah Jane Smith Adventures.
Rating: (G)
Time Period: Sometime between seasons 5 & 6 (DW).
Summary: It’s not news he wants to hear.

Author's Note: In honour of Elisabeth Sladen, 1948-2011

This is my farewell to Elisabeth Sladen. How could I not say goodbye to the companion who was my companion? There may have been others who were smarter, sexier, a match for the Doctor in all ways but Elisabeth Sladen was my companion.

She won’t be forgotten.

This is quick ‘n’ dirty (for definition see the F. A. Q.).


Disclaimer
All characters contained herein are the intellectual property of the BBC; I am not affiliated with nor endorsed by them.


_______________________


He stood, hands gripping the edge of the console, his eyes riveted to the screen that had begun speaking.

If this is being sent, emergency protocol 1 has been activated.

“Is something wrong?” Amy tilted her head, hair falling to one side as she tried to peer at his face.

His jaw set, just for a moment, and he turned a dial on the screen. The face froze. Then he smiled, clapping his hands together. “Amy, I need a moment. Several actually. How would you and Rory like to go to Rio?”

“You’ve said that before,” she replied flatly. “Remember? Blue grass and earth that ate people?”

“I’m not talking about the city but the planet. Big planet, very sunny, lots of feathers and skin. Did I say skin?

“I mean naked skin. Bronzed, oiled, naked skin. Big, tall, handsome fellas with the naked, oiled skin ...”

Amy abruptly turned. “Rory,” she yelled, “we’re going to Rio.”

“We didn’t make it the first time,” he called in reply.

Different,” she flashed the Doctor a look over her shoulder, “Rio!” She vanished into the hall. The Doctor fiddled the dial in the opposite direction.

Mr Smith is sending this in the event of my death. Doctor.

He couldn’t look. He didn’t want to listen.

Doctor!

His head jerked up, eyes once more on the screen; she knew ... had known him too well.

Look after Luke. Please. Make sure he’s safe.

The image blurred, fading to grey, and he reached for the screen once more, to switch it off, when the image strengthened and grew in colour. Doctor, I’m counting on you. The image faded, blurred and the screen lost the signal; there was no more.




The blue box slowly settled into view. It was distant from the grave, close to the road. A solitary figure stood, hand in trouser pockets. He couldn’t come any closer; it would make it too real. As though she were really gone.

And, he wondered, would anyone know the truth of why she was gone? Would anyone know she was Sarah-Jane Smith, defender of the Earth?

As the mourners slowly walked away, there was a sound familiar only to one and he looked at the road. He caught a glimpse of a blue box. An outline only before it, too, was gone. He glanced over his shoulder back to the grave and then to where he had seen the box. Clyde, catching the look, slung an arm around his friend’s shoulders.

“You had to know this was coming, mate,” he strolled casually beside Luke. Luke, however, knew the casualness was feigned.

Luke swallowed, nodded. “Maybe it was, Clyde. But I could hope, right?”

“Right.” Clyde nodded. “Come on. Let’s celebrate her life.”

“As much as we can tell.”

“As much as we can tell.”




Luke sat in the garden, watching the stars. Everyone had finally gone; Clyde had staggered to the bus stop, hours after everyone else had gone; he’d not wanted to leave his friend on his own. Not on the day they’d buried ...

Well, not tonight, anyway. But Luke had persuaded him he’d be fine, that he could manage. After all, he knew who waited, having caught glimpses of him all afternoon, popping in and out.

Whoooshwhoooooosh.

Luke looked away from the stars to a now flattened bush. “Am I on time?” asked the man emerging from the box. “Would’ve been here sooner except I couldn’t find the right bow tie.”

“No one’s here,” Luke automatically replied. The man closed the door behind him and sat in the chair near Luke.

“Want to call and tell her I’m here?”

“Yes.” Tears welled and he brushed them away. “You’ve changed.”

“So’ve you. Gotten ... bigger,” the man stated, entwining his fingers as he sat back, crossing one leg over the other. His eyes didn’t move, not once, from the youth sitting next to him.

“Why’re you here?”

“Your mum,” he answered. “She wanted me to make sure you were safe. I think she wanted me to take you somewhere to make sure.”

“I’m staying.”

“Can I ask why?”

Luke studied the distant stars for a few minutes before he looked back to the young-seeming man sitting nearby. “If I go, who’s going to continue her work?”

The Doctor fidgeted, straightening his bow tie, shifting slightly in his seat. “Your mum asked me to make sure you’re safe,” he repeated.

“Do I look like I’m in danger?”

Luke sat still under the laser inspection. “No,” the Doctor finally replied. “But your mum asked and I promised I’d make sure.”

“You promised?”

“Well,” the bow tie underwent another straightening that actually straightened, “I promised her transmission. Same thing, really.”

“I can’t go.” It was easier to focus on this than what she’d done. He didn’t think his heart could take it. Not without breaking again and he falling into a heap.

The Doctor rearranged his hands in his lap. “I can check in to make sure you’re safe,” he conceded.

Luke’s head swivelled, swiftly, in his direction. “I want to continue her work.”

“So you’ve said. Is it important, this work?”

“Who else would do it, without guns, like she would?”

The Doctor suddenly grinned. “That’s settled, then,” he announced and looked up to the sky. “Which one do you reckon she is?”

“Excuse me?” Luke blinked at the abrupt change. “I ... I don’t know. She’s ... she’s ...”

“No, she’s not,” the Doctor firmly informed. “She’s in the heavens,” he confidently stated, brooking no refusal of his words. “Looking over you.”

Dashing away tears, Luke bit his lip. His head bowed and the Doctor held him close, not letting go until the youth had cried himself to sleep. Holding Luke close, he looked to the stars, knowing he was, for all intents and purposes, alone and knowing he’d said this, years ago in the slow way. “Goodbye, Sarah Jane,” he whispered and held Luke until moments before dawn.
 
 
 
Armchair DM: Carson: No no no AIEEE!!armchairdm on April 22nd, 2011 01:50 pm (UTC)
... this shouldn't make me cry. It really shouldn't. The Sarah Jane post School Reunion isn't my Sarah Jane. Mine was with Jon; and Tom. The only companion besides Romana who wouldn't be overshadowed by the sheer size of Tom's personality. And despite how fitting her speech to the tenth doctor during school reunion is for this, I think I need to to quote the final words of both Jon and Tom here:

"Tears Sarah-Jane? Don't worry where there's life there's..."

and

"It is the end, but the moment has been prepared for."

I'm afraid it is my classic roots showing. However; she did show her class in that more than any one else, either companion, alien or doctor, she bridged the gap from classic to new. It's made me all sniffly about Nick all over again.

Goodbye Liz. If there is an afterlife, I hope she shares it with Jon, Nicholas and Ian (Marter).
F. J.: Lantern & Candles: Warmmorethanacandle on April 22nd, 2011 06:16 pm (UTC)
They're probably having a grand old catch-up, where they are.
(Deleted comment)
F. J.: Lanterns: Warmmorethanacandle on April 23rd, 2011 05:18 pm (UTC)
-offers over many tissues and chocolates.-
daystarsearcherdaystarsearcher on April 23rd, 2011 05:41 pm (UTC)
Lovely. Just like Sarah Jane to ask that, and just like Luke to insist on staying behind.
F. J.: Three candlesmorethanacandle on April 23rd, 2011 06:12 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I was hoping this would seem in character for them both, especially with what had happened, event wise, in the story.