Felt like writing some fluff, its written very roughly. As Ian and Barbara seem to meet lots of different companion in our stories, in this one they meet Rose, Jackie and Mickey. For some reason it ended up being set at Christmas.
Ian wasn’t really sure what UNIT – a name he knew only from an occasional vague news report in the silly season – thought he could do for them. They had asked quite politely and paid him compliments about his teaching at the Royal Aircraft Establishment’s technical college at Farnborough, so he obviously wasn’t in any kind of trouble. It was flattering to be asked to consult on something important – almost as flattering as it had been to take part in that year-long exchange programme to NASA – but he would have thought that the military and the security services would have their own experts to deal with this sort of thing.
He could still feel Barbara’s disapproval of his agreement to give up the weekend, but the fact that she had come along too suggested that she wasn’t really unhappy about it.
The young officer who had invited them into the mobile headquarters for a refreshing coffee seemed personable enough, and they had chatted briefly about Ian’s National Service days in the RAE. He hadn’t actually enjoyed them much at the time, but it couldn’t have shown to his superiors and now he was glad of it. Without their letters of recommendation, he would probably still be unemployed after being AWOL from Coal Hill School for nearly three years.
Instead he had been given a lecturing position at the RAE technical college. He and Barbara had at first been reluctant to tell the story of where they had been in that time, thinking that they would be ridiculed like those UFO contactees in the 1950s. So they were extremely surprised when a government office they had never heard of before had corroborated certain details of their story to the authorities, explaining that they had both had dealings with a traveller known only as the Doctor. None of which had stopped their Coal Hill colleagues from assuming that the pair of them had simply eloped to Gretna Green. And after all those assumptions, of course, they had done exactly that, on the first anniversary of their return to Earth.
Barbara went on. ‘He hates me. I know he does. I was stupid. Trying to fight… the way I felt.’
I wonder neither of them could hear my heart pounding. Was I hearing things properly? There was another long silence and I hardly dared to breathe.
'I don't know about these things,' said Kristas slowly, 'but I know that time is never wasted, Barbara. You and he have been forced together, a bond has been created. Let time test both your feelings.' He picked up a branch and began snapping little pieces off it and throwing them away. 'Mind you, I'm speaking from my knowledge, my little knowledge,' he added with a smile, 'of you as a person. My own ways are simple and direct. There was a girl I sat next to at the feast tonight. Salthyana was her name. I will tell her tomorrow that I wish her to stay at my side for the rest of our lives, but that,' he ended seriously, 'would be too direct for you I suppose.
Barbara said ‘Yes,’ very softly and added, ‘Besides, the man asks the woman if she is willing.’