The Ranger and the Doctor is a just-for-fun LtD/DW crossover written as a birthday gift for Ree and Carlie, who came up with the premise. Thanks to both of you for all the love and support you have shown me over the past year!
Find Chapters 1-2 here!
I love feedback, so feel free to leave your thoughts in my ask box or by reblogging or replying to this post - hope you enjoy!
And Cosie fans? I’m sorry in advance.
I really am.
Chapter Three: November 23rd
Rear Admiral Connor Tripp sat at his desk, staring at a ringing phone.
From somewhere far off in the complex the sound of zapper fire and metallic footsteps could be heard, coupled jarringly with human screams and shouts of defiance, growing fewer with each second that passed. His office was strewn with the robotic remains of half a dozen of his enemies, nothing more than husks now, smoking and charred and leaking black oil onto the pristine G.L.E.E. carpet. The hallway outside was littered with the bodies of the Rangers that hadn’t made it this far.
Too many bodies.
He was not hiding. Plans of the complex were spread out before him, hastily scratched lines showing the robots’ confirmed strongholds, the places where he hoped there might still be a contingent of Rangers fighting.
His hopes were dwindling, and there had been no word from the outside. Not in nearly twelve hours.
The phone rang again.
It was a hotline, a special one, inbound only and unconnected with the rest of the complex, which was why it was still working. Only 5 people in the entire galaxy besides him knew the phone number. He’d just watched 4 of them die.
After a long moment, he picked it up.
“Hey there, Rosie-Ree.”
“I know you like to work late at the office,” she said bravely, and her voice, even shaking as it was, felt like coming home. “But this is a little ridiculous.”
“I’m glad you called,” he said.
“I’m glad you picked up,” she said. Tripp looked at the broken robots on the floor.
“It’s been on the news,” she continued. “But they’re not telling us much. Is it-“
“It’s bad,” he said.
She was silent.
“Rosie?” He hadn’t planned for this. Hadn’t practiced. What did you say, what could you say, with one measly phone call?
“I had the scan today.”
Tripp blinked. “You had what?”
“I know you wanted me to wait,” she said in a rush. “But I just couldn’t - I just - it was positive, Connor.”
There were tears in her voice now, and they were happy tears and sad tears all mixed up together. Tripp suddenly found it hard to swallow.
“I’m going to be a daddy again,” he managed.
“Yes,” she whispered, and he could hear her smile even as her voice caught. “You are.”
“Rosie-” he said.
“Ty wants to say hello,” she said quickly, and there was the sounds of a handset being maneuvered around, and then a very young voice said, “Daddy?”
Tripp cleared his throat and blinked back the tears that threatened him now. “Hey, little man. Daddy’s here.”
“Daddy!” Ty said again, sounding excited.
“Listen,” Tripp swallowed, and tried again. “Listen, Ty-Ty, I need you to be a big boy and listen to me now, okay? I need you to take good care of Mommy in case I have to go away, and the new baby that’s coming too. I need you to do that for me.”
“Baby?” Ty asked.
“Yes, a baby, little man, a baby brother or sister just for you. And I need you to know, Tyson, that I love you very much and would never leave you if I didn’t have to, okay?”
Nothing in Tripp’s life could have prepared him for the feeling that caught in his chest now, an aching sorrow stronger than anything he’d felt before. “I love you, son.”
“I love you too, Daddy.”
He listened as his wife took back the phone. She was trying very hard not to let him hear her crying.
“Is there no chance-” she tried.
“There’s always a chance,” he said. He was lying, and she knew it, but she let him. The sounds of the robots in the hallways were drawing closer.
“I wanted more time,” she burst now. “We deserved more time, after everything.”
“I wouldn’t trade it for all the stars in the universe,” he said, his own tears falling silently down his face. “I have loved every second, Dr. Rosie Baker.”
She laughed, and he laughed too, to be able to hear it once more, even a laugh tinged with sadness like this. Things they’d said a million times meant so much more now.
“I love you,” she said.
A whistling sound, an unmistakable one, and Tripp closed his eyes. So they’re bombing us. He should have anticipated that.
“I love you, Rosie.”
He hung up before he lost the will to, because he didn’t want her to hear what happened next.
The bomb made contact in some far away part of the complex, and the triple-thick glass behind him shattered. Stabbing pain shot through his arm and shoulder as the door to his office opened to reveal a massive white robot poking its head curiously in. And he’d run out of zappers a long time ago.
Tripp placed both hands on his desk and stood, slowly. The robot raised its arm.
Tripp closed his eyes and thought of Rosie, of their son, of the child he was never going to know.
There was a zing of zapper fire, and then silence. Tripp opened his eyes once more.
There, framed in the doorway where the robot had stood, was a girl, wide-eyed, zapper raised. She wore red hair in a military bun and the single pip of an ensign.
There was something familiar about her.
Her mouth opened and closed a few times before she spoke. “Rear Admiral Tripp?” she said. “We don’t have much time.”