Title: Lure of the Unknown
Pairing: Tenth Doctor/Ross Jenkins
Fandom: Doctor Who
Table: 4, 50ficlets
Prompt: 2, Unknown
Disclaimer: This is entirely a product of my own imagination, and I make no profit from it. I do not own the Tenth Doctor or Ross Jenkins, just borrowing them for a while. Please do not sue.
***"Let's go check out this planet!" Ross told the Doctor, heading towards the steps leading to the door of the Tardis. He was ready to go out and see what this place was like, now that they knew from the readouts that the atmosphere was safe.
"Ross, wait just a moment." The Doctor put a restraining hand on his boyfriend's arm, shaking his head. "Aren't you forgetting some things?" he chided gently, gesturing at the viewscreens. "We should make sure that this place is hospitable before we leave the ship."
"But it's an unknown entity," Ross protested, a frown furrowing his brow. "You already said that. You've never been here before, and there's no way to have any idea what's waiting out there. We know that we can breathe the air, so isn't that all we need to know?"
"Is it?" The Time Lord leaned against the console of the ship, raising his eyebrows at his young lover. "Yes, we can breathe the air here. Yes, we know that simply stepping out of the Tardis won't get us killed. But there's more to consider."
Ross sighed, coming back from the steps to stand beside the Doctor. "I know that I'm probably being way too enthusiastic, especially after some of the things we've already seen on other planets," he admitted. "But this is still exciting for me, seeing new planets."
"I know it is, love." The Doctor's smile was loving, his voice soft. "And I can understand that. It's exciting for me, too -- even after all the centuries that I've spent discovering new planets. But we can't just go rushing out without having some idea of what we might find."
"Sorry, Doctor." Ross looked towards the door again, trying to keep back his impatience to be out of the ship and exploring a new place. "You're right. We have to exercise a little caution, don't we?" He hated to admit it, but the Time Lord was right.
Since he had been with the Doctor, he'd already seen devastated planets that looked as though they'd been destroyed by war. Ross held back a shiver at the memory; stepping out of the ship and seeing dead bodies and scorched land wasn't something he wanted to repeat.
He had to hold himself back, and learn patience, he told himself with an inward sigh. It was just so hard to make himself go forward slowly; he'd always wanted to rush headlong into any situation, which wasn't always a good attitude to have.
"I never know exactly what's going to be waiting for me outside the doors of the Tardis when I find a new planet," the Doctor told him, his dark gaze fixed on his boyfriend's face. "And I'm not always as careful as I should be. But that's been changing since you've been with me."
"Doctor, I don't want you to feel like you have to protect me," Ross protested, frowning again. "I've been a soldier. I've had to deal with being in new and different situations before. I can take care of myself, even if visiting unknown planets is new to me."
"I know you can, sweetheart," the Doctor said, his voice still soft. "But I'd rather be safe than sorry. Do you have any idea how I would feel if I let you run out of the Tardis into some kind of ambush, or a danger that I couldn't save you from?"
"You'd be devastated," Ross whispered, feeling ashamed of himself. He hadn't even thought of how the Time Lord would feel if anything should happen to him. He was more than just a companion to the Doctor; losing him would be a mortal wound for the other man.
He wasn't used to thinking of himself as being so indispensable; he'd been taught to think of himself as part of a unit when he'd been a soldier, and to put the good of the many before his own personal safety. It was taking him a while to lose that mentality.
"So what do you propose we do?" he asked the Doctor, knowing that he would follow whatever rules his lover set down. The Doctor did have more experience with this sort of thing, after all. And Ross was here to follow him, not to lead.
The Time Lord flashed him a smile, reaching out to take his hand. "I propose we go out of the ship slowly and cautiously, and have a look around," he said softly, twining his fingers through his boyfriend's. "And that we stay close to the Tardis for now."
Ross nodded, looking towards the door of the ship again. "You know, the lure of the unknown has always had a big appeal for me," he said, turning back to the other man. "But sharing it with you makes it all the more exciting. I feel like we're on the verge of some big discovery here."
"Well, we won't know that until we head out of here," the Doctor told him, moving towards the steps, the younger man following him closely. "Let's go see what sort of adventure we can find." He bounded down the steps, Ross right behind him. "Allons-y!"
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