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I Am Clever

alec_towser


A Fine Line - Between Chaos and Creation

Everybody seems to think I'm lazy; I don't mind, I think they're crazy...


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UNIT!100 - 076. Who?
Bung a Rock at It
alec_towser
Title: Bates and Yenton
Fandom: Doctor Who
Characters: Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, Mike Yates, John Benton, Second Doctor
Prompt: 076. Who?
Word Count: 1002 (my intended drabble kind of got away from me and wrote this instead)
Rating: K
Summary: Bit of an AU - set during/after(?) the Three Doctors. The Brig is slightly confused.
Author's Note: Based on a verbal slip I keep making for some reason. Concrit is welcomed, flames are not.

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“It’s good to be back on Earth,” the Brigadier commented. “For a while, I was rather worried we wouldn't make it back in one piece.”

Then he noticed that neither Miss Grant, Benton, Mr. Ollis, or Dr. Tyler were in the room that he had just appeared in. Surely they would have all ended up in the same place?

Puzzled, he wandered out into the hallway to see Mike Yates walking toward him wearing…Sergeant’s stripes? Curiouser and curiouser… he wondered. “…Captain Yates?”

“A promotion, Sir?” his smile was good-natured, even as he swiftly saluted the senior officer. “And it’s Bates, Sir. You remember.”

The Brigadier’s eyebrow shot up. “You’re sure about that?”

“Yes, Sir. Unless my mother forged my birth certificate and never told me.”

He let the vaguely snarky comment slide. “Yes. Well… carry on then, Sergeant.”
———

The Brigadier carried on down the hall, hoping to find someone that could explain this nonsense. Seeing no one, he then went to his office. If nothing else, it would be a more comfortable place to wait than the lab.

No sooner had he sat down behind his desk, however, there was a knock on the door. “Come in,” he called.

In strode Benton, dressed just as oddly as Yates (No; Bates, he reminded himself) - he was in a Captain’s uniform. “Sir!” he saluted, then went to hand over a folder which he’d been carrying in his other hand.

As he walked over, the Brigadier noticed the name tag on his uniform; it read ‘Yenton’. “Yes, what can I do for you, Mr. …Yenton?” The name felt wrong. Did no one else notice the clear lunacy that was taking place, here?

“These were the papers you wanted me to get for you, Sir. Don’t you remember?”

He didn’t, but figured he should play along for now. “…oh, yes. Yes, of course. Thank you.”

“You’re welcome, Sir. Anything else?”

“No, thank you, Captain. I’ll let you know if anything else comes up.”
“Thank you, Sir.” Yenton saluted and left the room, leaving the Brigadier alone with his rapidly-whirling thoughts.
———

He had to be going mad. That was the only explanation. Why else would everyone be acting as if this was completely normal?

During the course of his day, the Brigadier had found several other discrepancies between this place and “home” - Liz Shaw was still working at UNIT, the Doctor was polite and all too happy to help wherever he was needed, and Corporal Bell was a man. It was like he didn't even know who these people were anymore.

He saw Bates and Yenton several more times as well, both of them asking if he was doing all right; the latter asking if he was ill at all, as he seemed ‘out of sorts’. To which he had snapped at them both (which probably didn’t help his case), and stalked off to try and find someplace quiet so he could think.

Locking himself into his office, he considered the possibilities: he was going mad, everyone else was going mad, or…possibly? The Doctor had told him a while back, during the Inferno incident, of traveling to a parallel universe - he had seen Benton, Liz, even the Brigadier himself, but in oddly twisted roles. Perhaps that was what had happened to him now?

Not one to simply take the idea at face value, the Brigadier took note of the facts pertaining to his situation, and after some deliberation, determined that that or going mad were his two most logical arguments.

However, this brought up a new problem - if he was trapped in a parallel universe, how would he get home?

———

He didn’t remember how long he waited around, but after a while, he decided that the furious pacing the floor around his office (or whoever’s office it really was) wasn’t going to help at all. So he decided to go back to the lab, where it had all started. Perhaps he’d find some answers there?

No sooner had the Brigadier arrived than he heard the sound of the TARDIS engines groaning and wheezing. He turned toward the corner where the TARDIS usually sat, and watched as it rematerialized itself. Once the engines had shut off, the door opened and the smaller version of the Doctor poked his head out.

“Ah, there you are, Lethbridge-Stewart! We almost couldn’t find you in all that mess. So sorry about that, by the way. No problem, though - we’ll soon have that sorted out.” He gestured toward the open TARDIS doors and gestured for the Brigadier to enter. “Hurry - we haven’t much time! We can’t hold the small wormhole between our world and this one open forever. It’s a wonder we were even able to muster up enough energy to keep it open in the first place - it was literally about to collapse and seal the gap forever.”

With that kind of incentive, the Brigadier rushed inside. He had certainly had enough of this world, or any other world for that matter, and just wanted to go home. With a few twists of some knobs, and flipping some switches, the TARDIS began groaning as it dematerialized. “You may want to brace yourself, Brigadier,” the Doctor warned. “Because I’m using the Fast Return switch, as well as going through a quickly collapsing wormhole, this may get a little bumpy.”

As it turned out, ‘a little bumpy’ was a vast understatement, but by the time they had rematerialized outside UNIT HQ (the proper one, this time), the Brigadier found that he no longer cared. All he wanted was to sit down, have an extremely stiff drink, and forget all about the events that had gone on today.

However, it was not to be, as Sergeant Benton chose that moment to approach him and ask, “Sir, we have several weapons missing. Where shall we say they’ve gone to when we do inventory?”

The Brigadier just raised one eyebrow, sighed, and decided that that drink would just have to wait. There was work to do, after all.


X-posted to FF.net, Teaspoon, AO3, and unit_family.

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Friday, 17 January and Saturday, 18 January 2014

User merryghoul referenced to your post from Friday, 17 January and Saturday, 18 January 2014 saying: [...] by [Two | K] Bates and Yenton [...]

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