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The Trouble With Harry

by: Azar (Send Feedback)

Series: Rebel Yell #6
Chapters: 014 Word Count: 26386
Rating: TEEN
Character(s): Jethro Gibbs, Tony DiNozzo, Ducky Mallard, Abby Sciuto, Ziva David, Timothy McGee, Jenny Shepard, Ensemble, Other Female Character, Other Male Character, Leon Vance
Category(ies): Crossover, General, Mystery, Angst/Drama
Pairing(s): - No Pairing -
Crossover Shows: Doctor Who
Summary: Abby's past and present collide when she and the missing Admiral Sullivan they're searching for turn out to have a mutual friend--the Doctor.

Author Notes: I could not have pulled this off without the help of several people: mari4212 and becky_monster, my fabulous betas, debc and medie for being the world's best cheerleaders, wolfryder for introducing me to Doctor Who and Harry Sullivan in the first place, chatona for setting up the ncis_bigbang challenge, without which this probably would've stayed just an idea, and rheanna27 for issuing the Choose Your Own Companion challenge that got the whole Doctor & Abby ball rolling to begin with. Spoilers: NCIS--nothing past "Internal Affairs"; Doctor Who--"Robot" through "Terror of the Zygons," the 1996 TV movie, and new series S3 through "Blink" with (hopefully oblique) hints at later events and some speculation about the fate of a couple companions

Chapters: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14

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Prologue

Prologue

There were a lot of words that Abby Sciuto used to describe herself but "heartbreaker" had never been one of them. The Doctor, however, seemed determined to prove her wrong on that point by acting as broken-hearted as she'd ever seen him.

"But you can't want to leave already," he protested in a voice almost as crestfallen as his face. "We've hardly started! I haven't had the chance to take you to Florana yet. Or Barcelona the planet, not the city, although if you'd like we could see both--or Metabilis Three--"

His disappointment tugged at her but Abby shook her head, remaining resolute. "Don't get me wrong, I've had a great time, but it's been almost two years--"

"In relative time, perhaps, but we already agreed I could return you the very night we departed," he pointed out.

"Yeah, but if I come back the next day looking like an eighty year old woman, I think people will notice something is up."

"We've plenty of time before that becomes an issue."

Abby shrugged. "Maybe so. But I also really should go home before I forget what I was studying. It won't help me to get back in time for my eight o'clock class if I can't remember what the class was."

"What about the people of Vorja?" the Doctor demanded next. "Would you abandon them to govern themselves?"

"Why not?" Abby asked. "It works for Earth, doesn't it?"

"I'm not so certain of that," he murmured.

Abby hugged him impulsively, closing her eyes and trying to memorize the feel of his velvet frock coat under her fingers. "It's been fun. Hell, it's been incredible. I've learned so much that I never would've if I hadn't gone with you...but I never meant to stay forever. I've got things to do with my life. They may not involve saving the world as often, but saving a piece of it can be just as important in its own way."

The Doctor's grip tightened for a moment before he reluctantly let go. "You're sure this is what you want?" he asked, meeting her eyes.

Abby nodded. "I'm sure."

"All right, then." Stepping back, he moved to the control console and began fiddling with it. "Next stop, the University of New Orleans, Anno Domini 1989." One hand paused over the switch that would send them hurtling towards their destination. "Unless..." He looked up at her. "One last hurrah? I'm told 15th Century Transylvania is lovely this time of year..."

Abby eyed him. "Are you trying to bribe me with Dracula?"

He smiled sheepishly. "Is it working?"

Before she could answer, a cacophonous, jangling sound invaded the TARDIS, like the chiming of a particularly discordant chorus of bells. At first Abby thought it was the cloister bell, but after it chimed again she realized it was something much more mundane.

Frowning, she glanced in bewilderment at the Doctor. "I thought you said the phone on the TARDIS doesn't work."

The Doctor glanced curiously at her. "Which phone do you mean? The one outside? It doesn't."

"Then which phone's ringing?"

"Ringing?" He frowned. "I don't hear any ringing."

Abby opened her mouth to answer then closed it again in confusion. Wait...this wasn't how it had happened. He'd offered her one last trip to Transylvania and she said yes...

+++

Abby sat bolt upright in bed, yanked out of the dream like a fish on a line just in time to pounce on the phone as it rang for the fourth and final time before going to voicemail. "Hello?" she rasped, her voice still roughened with sleep.

"Abs?"

"Tony?" She spared her alarm clock a bleary glance, blinking twice to make sure she was seeing it right. "This better be important. And before you say another word, keep in mind that I can kill you and leave no forensic evidence."

"Would I call at five in the morning if it wasn't important?" Tony asked wryly. "We have a case. Gibbs wants everyone on the job ASAP. You too, Abs: you've got a car to go over with a fine tooth comb."

"Murder or drugs?" she guessed.

"Missing Admiral," Tony corrected.

"Missing Admiral?" Abby echoed. "How do you misplace an Admiral? They're like, important and stuff."

"That's what Director Shepard and the Joint Chiefs want to know. Especially since he's not one of ours."

Abby's stomach did a nervous little flip. "What do you mean, not one of ours?"

Tony laughed uneasily. "Rear Admiral Harry Sullivan of the British Royal Navy was in the country for some top secret reason I can't seem to find out. Somehow he managed to disappear right out from under the noses of two Navy officers and four Marines. Our orders are to find the admiral STAT, before this whole mess has a chance to cause an international incident."

"Shit."

"That's about the size of it, yep."

Abby nodded, even though she knew he couldn't see it. "I'll be there as fast as I can."

"I'll tell Gibbs."

After years of practice, Abby had managed to get even the most challenging part of her morning routine down to its most efficient. It had become something of a contest with herself over the years, to beat her own record. Five AM wasn't even the earliest she'd ever gotten an emergency call, which was why she always set her clothes out the night before.

The dream lingered in her mind, though, even as the details of it faded. It had been almost twenty years since she'd said goodbye to the Doctor and it was odd that she'd be dreaming about him now. Especially since the phone's interruption hadn't been the only thing that felt off about the scene when held up against her memories; she just couldn't pin down what else was different.

Showering, dressing and styling her hair into her favorite pigtails granted no new insight. The question had to be shelved while she carefully applied her makeup, lest she get distracted and stab herself in the eye with a mascara brush, so it wasn't until she was halfway out the door that it occurred to Abby what had been different. For some reason she couldn't explain, in her dream the Doctor had been wearing a pair of red Converse sneakers.

"Dream logic," Abby said out loud to herself, chuckling under her breath as she dug her keys out of her purse. It had to be: tennis shoes of any kind just didn't fit with the 19th Century Romantic look that she remembered. Mystery solved, she put it out of her mind.

Still, as she locked the door behind her, Abby couldn't help but notice that the air tasted faintly of stardust.

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