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[personal profile] jesterladyfic
Title: Chuck Cunningham Syndrome
by Jesterlady
Rating: PG-13
Characters: The Ninth Doctor, Cordelia Chase, Logan Echolls
Fandom: Doctor Who, Angel, Veronica Mars Red Dwarf, Toy Story, Road to Avonlea, The Middleman, Step by Step, Family Matters, Roseanne, The West Wing, Star Trek: The Next Generation, All My Children, Happy Days with special appearances by X-Men, Pirates of the Caribbean, Are You Being Served and a great deal of the cast of Saved by the Bell and Boy Meets World
Summary: The Doctor is just minding his own business when Cordelia Chase and Logan Echolls pop into the Tardis, now they're off on a tv trope adventure to find out what's disrupting reality. If only fictional characters would stop dropping by.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of these fandoms, especially DW, ATS or VM. I owe a great deal to www.tvtropes.com and all of the chapter titles are a play on tropes found there. Written for the [livejournal.com profile] scifibigbang 2011.
A/N: Many thanks to my beta, [livejournal.com profile] exmanhater and to [livejournal.com profile] rainyrocket for her artwork.





Prologue: Psychotic Jackass With a Heart of Gold

The Doctor was raring to go...to sleep. For the last forty-eight Transcellan hours, which roughly converted would be eight earth days - not that he always converted everything to earth time, mind you - he'd been delivering miners of the planet of Dover from their cruel overlords, the Dover Elite. The Tardis had welcomed him back with open arms - figuratively speaking, of course - and he'd only just stopped to put her into the Vortex before collapsing on the captain's seat and putting his feet up on the console. Her protests resounded in his head, but he couldn't fully comprehend them, half dead as he was. Even Timelords needed certain modicums of rest and he hadn't been properly fed during those forty-eight hours. Not even one banana. He closed his eyes, feeling safe within his ship, and wanting never to see another alien race ever again. Or perhaps only for about the amount of time it took for a quick kip.

It must have been later - yes, an hour and fifty-six seconds later - when
he thought he heard lots of whirring and alarms and if it wasn't for the cotton
stuffed into his head he might have been in a position to do something about it.

“Hey! Wake up! Hey, Big Ears, care to join the party?”

What were they talking about? Big Ears? True, he'd never really looked
in a mirror since his regeneration - he'd had the Tardis remove them all from the
wardrobe before he would pick out new clothes - but Big Ears? They didn't feel
that big. His head was extremely light and carefree, thank you, and he didn't
appreciate the sentiment. Still, if he could only open his eyes he could see
what all the fuss was about and stop the annoying poking which had recently
joined in with the annoying voice.

When he did open his eyes, he knew he hadn't really woken up because if
he was awake Cordelia Chase wouldn't be standing in his Tardis, one hand on her
hip, the other engaged in poking him rather rudely.

“I knew I never should've landed on that planet,” the Doctor groaned.
“Too many humans - all muddled in my head whether they are or aren't real. I
probably have Dover Coal Miner Disease.”

“If you're done?” she asked pointedly.

“Not at all,” the Doctor replied, stretching and feeling strength flood
back into his body. “I've only just started with you, Cordelia Chase. To my
eternal sorrow, I suspect. Still, only got one life to live - well, you do, or
would if you were real, which apparently, you are!”

He beamed at her, his irritation dissipated in fascination with the
conundrum with which he found himself presented.

“That's all real nice and everything,” she answered, “but who the hell
are you, where am I, and how do you know my name?”

“Oh, where to start,” he said, rubbing his hands together. “I'm the
Doctor - always best to start there - and you're on my ship, the Tardis -
acronyms to be had later - and you're quite famous, you know.”

“I highly doubt that.”

“Oh, but you are. You're brilliant, you. What a character arc!”

“You're back to not making sense. Actually, you never made any in the
first place. Now, what is going on?”

“Haven't a clue,” he answered. “That's always fun. Wouldn't want to
know everything. Still, I'm sure we'll figure it all out. Well, I will.”

It looked like she was about to object again and the Doctor inwardly
groaned, remembering how sharp her tongue actually was and wondering why, out of
all the fictional characters in time and space, it had to be her. Before she
could chew his head off, there was a flash and the alarms started going off like
mad and he guessed it was just going to be one of those days.

“You kidnap people often?” Cordelia asked, eyebrows raised at the young
man who'd appeared in the room with them.

The Doctor opened his mouth and gaped a bit.

“A cosmic joke, this,” he said in disbelief and then spun to look at
Cordelia once again. “Well, maybe you aren't Cordy after all, maybe you're
Kendall. Wait, no, you answered to Cordelia - maybe you're both or something
tried to bring something along with you and could only manage from a different
show. Or maybe it's all just a weird coincidence, which isn't likely at all.”
He spun to address the man who was looking slightly shell-shocked. “Hello, I'm
the Doctor and this is Cordelia Chase.”

“Logan Echolls,” he said faintly in return.

“I know,” the Doctor said, nodding his head vigorously. “Aren't you
just?”

“Stop talking about us like we're your favorite paintings in the Louvre!”
Cordelia snapped.

“Oh, good, that,” he said. “Though I wouldn't have thought you'd be a
fan.”

“My parents took me to Paris every year until I was-”

“A senior, yeah, big pity that. Gotta follow the rules though and
really, it helped make you who you are now. I wonder what when you're from?”

“Sorry to interrupt,” Logan said, not sounding sorry at all. “But I
wonder if someone could fill me in on what the hell is going on?”

“I don't know,” the Doctor said, “which is beginning to be more a
nuisance than fun. Right, let's find out.”

He reached into his pockets and pulled out several odd looking objects
before finding what he was looking for.

“Who's first?”

“I refuse to submit to an alien probing,” Cordelia said firmly. “Though
I'm not convinced aliens do exist. Who knows what Willow was really talking
about with their space slugs and crazy people? That's like Sunnydale on a normal
day.”

“At least season two then,” the Doctor said under his breath. “Hair
bears it out. And when are you from?” he asked, turning to Logan.

“If this is a kidnapping,” Logan said, “it's pretty...cool, actually.
The last couple of times weren't this exotic.”

The Doctor decided this had all gone on long enough. His patience for
ignorance was especially low in this body and he'd rather get on to the fixing
the problem part of his day.

“Right, well, since neither of you two know what to do, I suggest you zip
it and leave it to me. It's my ship, my rules.”

“I bet you say that to all the girls,” Logan muttered.

“I do, actually. Never mind, come on. No probes, just scans. Maybe
you're holograms or manifestations of some part of my subconscious.“

He quickly scanned the two of them, standing as far back from Cordelia as
possible. He hadn't watched all of Buffy and Angel several times
for nothing.

“Well, what are we?” she asked in scathing tones.

“None of that,” he snapped back. “Still, hang on a tick, be back. Don't
touch anything and don't let cross show hormones mess you up now!”

With a final grin he left the room but stood just outside the door.

“Now that the blithering idiot's gone,” Cordelia said, “let's figure out
what's going on.”

“I could swear you were her,” Logan said. “Still, moving on. What do
you suggest?”

“I suggest leaving by the door.”

“Someone ate her daily helping of fish, I see,” Logan answered before the
door popped open and the Doctor winced. The Tardis would keep them safe enough
but no one should really be looking into the Vortex. Especially fragile humans.

“I might need to sit down,” Cordelia said in a stunned voice.

“I'm right behind you.”

“So, we're not on Earth anymore.”

“No.”

“So, where are we?”

“The Vortex,” the Doctor answered, popping his head back in the door.
“Now, can I actually leave you two alone for a minute or are you going to try
something stupid again?”

“What's stupid about opening a door?” Logan asked, obviously not
expecting an answer.

“What's stupid is that's the whole of space and time out there. Makes
some of my species go mad and what do you think it'd do to an ape like you!” the
Doctor groused before leaving again.

This time he actually left and swung by the medical bay to grab a reality gizmo, which was a ridiculous name for a scientific instrument, but the people of Gizmo 35 had been very definite in their labeling. In any case, the device would help him interpret the scans he'd taken with the sonic screwdriver and help him figure out exactly why fictional characters kept popping into the Tardis at whim. Speaking of the Tardis, she chose that moment to psychically kick him in the head and he stopped short. They still weren't very used to each other, this version of him and the Tardis, and he didn't like it when she did that.

“What? What now? Got enough problems on my hand!”

Rather grouchily, he thought, the Tardis began to show him how she'd sensed reality vibrations being stretched and broken and had tried to intercept the cause, thereby, causing the sudden interruptions in his life.

“I could do with a project,” the Doctor said, shrugging and ignored her subtle sighs. “Still, maybe a bit of a preemptive warning would've been nice.” He tossed the now useless gadget aside.

***

When they were alone, Logan shook his head, sure that last night's hangover, or something like it, had affected his mind. When nothing happened, he was forced to concur that he was on a spaceship with a Kendall lookalike and a crazy alien with big ears. Having settled that thought firmly in his mind, he felt relieved and sat down, prepared to enjoy himself until something happened to change his mind again.

Kendall 2.0 didn't appear to be having the same inner peace. She was
pacing up and down, cursing someone named Angel, and glaring at him every time he
looked at her.

“Well, it's not my fault,” he finally said, since she was making him
dizzy. “I didn't ask to be brought here. Don't look at me.”

“For all I know you and that manic idiot could be in on it together,” she
snapped.

“Excuse me if I might point out the tiny flaw in your logic, my dear,” he
said quite politely, ignoring her sputter at his term of endearment. “But you
were already here when I arrived; hence, it's much more likely the two of you are
in it together.”

“Oh, you two could've planned it that way,” she said, desperation in her
voice. She resumed her pacing for a minute and then leaned back against the
console in slightly hysterical laughter. “I give up,” she said. “This is
ridiculous.”

“Certainly looks that way,” he agreed. “Now, can we agree to find out
what's going on amicably?”

“We could,” she said, “once I find out who Kendall is.”

“Would you like the G or R rated version?” he asked.

She narrowed her eyes.

“The full version.”

He told her, not sparing himself or Veronica or Kendall. But even he had
to admit his tone implied his enjoyment of the debriefing.

“I don't believe a word of it,” she said. “You're as crazy as he is.”

“Maybe,” Logan said, smirking. “But my Kendall had a tattoo in a
delicious area. Perhaps you don't?”

Cordelia's mouth opened slightly, then she glared again and launched into
a tirade that he quickly grew tired of and started to give as good as he got.
They continued on like that for several minutes and Logan was annoyed and
challenged at the same time until the Doctor, or whoever he was, burst back into
the room again.


***

When he got back to the console room the Doctor found Cordelia and Logan arguing in fierce whispers and he tut-tutted. They broke off and glared mutually at him.

“Can't we all be friends together?” he asked and didn't wait for them to
answer. “As far as I can tell, you two are the result of someone tampering with
the fabric of reality and I've got to find a way to put you back. Looks like you
two are only the beginning.”

“I've had it,” Cordelia said. “I've been very patient, but I want to
know what the hell you mean when you talk about reality fabric and vortexes and
whatever else it was you were talking about! Beginning of what?”

“I'm surprised at you,” the Doctor said. “I'd think you'd take something
like this on faith considering all you deal with on a daily basis. Your boss is
a vampire, correct?”

“Vampires and Hellmouths and LA I know and can handle, but what-” she
pointed all around “-is all this? This is not magic.”

“Very good. Magic is rubbish, of course, but not in your world.”

“I'm beginning to feel like the third wheel of a very attractive
sandwich,” Logan interrupted again. “Look, Doctor, or whoever you are, all this
might be real simple for you, but it's not for us, so could you just sit down and
explain? Vampires?” he ended, turning to Cordelia. She sighed and rolled her
eyes.

“All right, all right. Time for a kiddie beddie bye story.” The Doctor
led the way to the kitchen, brewed them both proper cups of tea, ignored their
rather wide-eyed stares and explained, without giving any personal details, who
he was and what he did and how they were there.

“I'm as real as anybody, buddy,” Cordelia asserted.

“And I don't believe one word of what you just said,” Logan agreed.

“What more proof do you need?” the Doctor cried. “You're in my bloody
space ship!”

“You sound like Wesley after he's had a conversation with his father,”
Cordelia mumbled.

“How is the Watcher?” the Doctor inquired. She didn't answer. He turned
to Logan. “And you, are you on or off with little Veronica at the moment?”
Logan didn't reply either. “I hate to tell you this, but you're not real. And I
wish you were, if only so I could drop you off on some humanoid planet somewhere,
but I've got to figure this out and I need your help.”

“If you put us back,” Logan asked, “will we be real there?”

“Until you get canceled,” the Doctor replied cheerfully.

“I'm not convinced,” Cordelia said, but her straight face was slipping,
“but I can't wait to tell everybody about it anyway.” The Doctor let that
slide. No sense in telling them they wouldn't remember anything. No point at
all. They'd just forget and make a lot of fuss before they forgot and, if
anything, he wanted to save himself from that.

“I can just see Veronica's face trying to put all the pieces together,”
Logan said. “So, let's do it.”

“Fantastic. Now, I've got some hours of calculations ahead of me, so if
you don't mind, I'll get to it. Kitchen's here, the Tardis will entertain you if
need be, just don't entertain each other...” the Doctor's voice trailed off as he
got up. “Really not Kendall then? It'd make more sense. Anyway-”

He was cut off by more alarms and he scrambled for the door, the other
two following behind.

“You think this happens often?” Logan commented idly.

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