The Matchmaker Bot
My Life as a Teenage TARDIS
Disclaimer: I don't own either Doctor Who or Buffy The Vampire Slayer.
AN: I had not really planned on continuing The Last Two in the Universe, but a lot of people really like it for some reason and some of those people gave me some really good ideas. Thus, I'm continuing the series with this story, which will include a number of outtakes from Dawn's new life on the TARDIS with the Buffybot. Updates are essentially going to occur as I get a good idea and am able to turn it into a coherent scene or two. I'm also considering another story concurrent with this one to explain what's going on with the Scooby gang while Dawn's with the Doctor (as, face it, there's no way they're getting back the second they left with the Doctor doing the driving). I already have at least one good idea for a scene in that story, although I'm going to be fairly busy for a couple of weeks after Easter weekend's over, so I'm not sure when or if that story will get off the ground. The Matchmaker Bot
In the dead of night, a trench coat clad figure crept through the darkened TARDIS's corridors towards his latest companion's door. Opening the door as quietly as possible, the figure's eyes swept across the room, taking in every detail briefly before focusing upon his target.
The Buffybot, which Dawn had decided that she might as well take with her once she realized that they wouldn't be gone for any time at all, since the Doctor had a time machine, was laying on its bed while it silently proceeded through its recharging cycle. A red light periodically blinked on and off, while a thick power cable provided her with energy to replenish the power lost when the robot had needed to save Dawn. The ruler of Kardash 7 had kidnapped her younger sister in order to take Dawn as his child bride, and, as a good big sister, the Buffybot was programmed to prevent anyone from wedding Dawn who had not both been dating her for at least a year and received the official Scooby seal of approval. Dawn was also not supposed to wed until she was at least forty.
For the creeping figure's purposes, what was important was that the robot was entirely unaware in this state. He admitted, if only to himself, that what he was doing was a little bit unethical, but the Buffybot wasn't really quite advanced enough to qualify as a sentient being and desperate times called for desperate measures.
So far, Dawn had not been willing to go on even one date with his TARDIS. At this rate, they would never get to making baby TARDISs. Rose had told him to just let things develop naturally, of course, but that sort of advice was for humans. He was a time lord. He was a master of all of time and space. There was no way some little girl/dimension ship sort of thing was going to stand in his way. He'd just have to be sneaky.
Pointing his sonic screw driver at the prone figure, the Doctor depressed a few buttons and watched as a blue glow enveloped the Buffybot. Soon, very soon, Dawn would agree to a date with his TARDIS. * * *
Praxis 13 was a bit of an odd world, as far as Dawn was concerned. It was also a pretty annoying world. Since it was the thirteenth furthest world from the Praxis system's sun, Dawn's ingrained habit of worrying about occult implications caused her to worry that it might be unlucky. Probably, that wasn't the case, but with her luck, it was certainly possible. However, the Doctor had assured her that, in point of fact, the opposite was true. The inhabitants of Praxis 13 were known throughout the galaxy for having extraordinarily good fortune.
Of course, what the Doctor had not bothered mentioning was that the inhabitants' luck did not extend to those from off world. Thus, unless she spent all her time in a bar full of space freighter pilots, she would pretty well always be the most unlucky person in the room. If there was a lottery, she wouldn't win it. If a cute guy walked up to her, he was probably looking for the other Dawn Summers who was standing directly behind her. Additionally, as she'd just discovered to her dismay, if there was a banana peel which the stupid banana-obsessed Doctor had left on the floor, then she would be the one slipping on it.
Thankfully, the Buffybot was around to help her in situations like this one, as the robot was quick to gently assist her sister in getting back to her feet.
“Are you alright, Dawn?” the blonde queried, as Dawn rubbed her aching back while slowly getting to her feet.
“Yes. I'm fine. It's just, ow, I hate this stupid unlucky planet.”
“The Doctor said that this planet was very lucky.”
“Sure. Lucky for everyone but me he meant.”
She was suddenly reminded of a scene from just twenty minutes earlier and winced.
“Well, for me and Rose, anyway.”
Rose had somehow managed to get trapped alone in a gondola lift which was now stuck hundreds of feet in the air half way up a mountain. According to the gondola's operators, as all their maintenance workers were on leave, no none would be able to get her down for about a week. It was very lucky for all of Praxis' inhabitants who had planned on riding the gondola that day that every last one of them had been coincidentally delayed until the gondola lifts broke down. Thus, they had all avoided being trapped with her. The Doctor had just left after Rose had called him on her superphone and started screaming about how much she hated this planet.
So, okay, the banana peel thing still sucked, but it could be worse.
Wearing her usual guileless and unconcerned expression, the Buffybot began discussing another topic which had caught her interest.
“Dawn, I was wondering whether you have a significant other.”
Okay, Dawn thought. That was pretty odd. The Buffybot didn't usually ask her questions beyond whether she was okay, happy and wanted some breakfast. Fortunately, the answer was straightforward.
“Nope. After all, it's not like there are tons of great prospects lining up on the TARDIS.”
The Buffybot simply cocked her head questioningly, wearing a mildly concerned expression on her face.
“Do you not like your companions on our journey through time and space?”
Dawn waved her off.
“No, no. Everyone's fine. It's just that they're not exactly good dating prospects, you know?”
“No, Dawn. I do not know. That is why I am curious.”
Dawn resisted the urge to sigh. Sometimes the Buffybot really reminded her of Buffy and made her feel a tiny bit better about her sister being gone. Other times it was a painful reminder of what she had lost. Then there were times like this one where the Buffybot was just annoyingly tiresome due to its seeming incapacity to understand even the simplest of human interactions. Maybe she could get the robot upgraded somewhere in the future. That was a thought.
“Okay, well, we're sisters. You get why sisters can't be together, right?”
The Buffybot was also a robot, but considering she had that whole affair with Spike going on for months while he was using her as a sex-bot, she might not understand why relationships with robots would squick her sister out a bit.
The Buffybot nodded.
“Sexual intercourse within family units should be discouraged, as it carries social stigma and leads to unhealthy children.”
“Good, good,” Dawn replied encouragingly. That was not quite how she would have put it, but, for the Buffybot, it was actually a fairly coherent and intelligent response.
“And, even if they haven't realized it yet, Rose and the Doctor are so hung up on each other that it's not even funny. I mean, that hand-holding thing they do, total sickeningly sweet coupleness right there.”
The Buffybot nodded. It was aware that hand-holding was considered a first step towards eventual sexual intercourse. Of course, according to the Buffybot's programming, hand-holding was supposed to be a fairly brief first step, followed in rapid succession by kissing, groping and copulation. Perhaps the Doctor and Rose needed some assistance or advice. The Buffybot filed that thought away for later consideration in favour of continuing her conversation with Dawn.
When she had activated that morning, the Buffybot had immediately realized that it had not been fulfilling the instructions of Sisterly_Dating_Support.exe. This program clearly indicated that it was a big sister's duty to find a good boyfriend or girlfriend for her little sister, so that said little sister would be cared for in the event of the Buffybot's permanent or temporary deactivation. Based on the program's parameters, the Buffybot had immediately determined that there was an excellent partner for Dawn in her immediate proximity. Unfortunately, Dawn seemed not to have acted upon this fact, so the Buffybot had engaged Dating_Adivce.exe in order to assist Dawn in realizing the truth.
“What about the Doctor's TARDIS?”
Dawn blinked, staring at the Buffybot as if she'd never seen her before in her life.
“The what? You mean the blue box? You want me to date the blue box?”
The Buffybot smiled cheerfully. It seemed that Dawn understood.
“According to Sisterly_Dating_Support.exe, good traits in prospective partners include not being excessively sexually promiscuous, sharing a species with your partner and having some common traits. Based upon these parameters, the Doctor's TARDIS is an optimal prospective partner in your immediate vicinity, so you should engage dating protocols.”
Dawn looked completely taken aback at this pronouncement. Since when did the Buffybot have a setting her sister up with a boyfriend program? Who would have even put something like that in her?
Spike had mostly just programmed the Buffybot for sex, while Willow had focused upon trying to make the robot patrol, convincingly imitate the real Buffy and protect Dawn. Looking for a boyfriend for Dawn did not seem as it would fall within either of their parameters. Besides, she had never brought something like this up before, so what had changed. Actually, that was a good question. Why had this never come up before, if the Buffybot had some sort of flaky dating support program?
“So, if you've got this program thingy, why have you never mentioned this before?”
The Buffybot seemed to contemplate this question with a rather bemused look upon her face.
“Unknown. Sisterly_Dating_Support.exe should likely result in encouraging Dawn to go on dates at least nineteen times a day with the Doctor's TARDIS in such close proximity, however, such interactions cannot be found within my memory banks. This data suggests either that my memory banks or programming have been recently compromised.”
Of course, that made perfect sense! Someone had reprogrammed her. Really, on the TARDIS, as Rose could barely work her souped up cell phone, there was really only one possible culprit.
She quickly took out and opened her own souped up cell phone, which the Doctor had procured for her use because, hey, twenty-first century girl here. She needed a way to communicate with her friends even if she couldn't call them right now since she and the Buffybot wouldn't actually be gone for any real time due to time travelling.
Hitting speed-dial two for the Doctor, who had gotten his own souped up cell phone after Dawn had been kidnapped without him noticing for the fifth time in two weeks, Dawn waited briefly for the Doctor to pick up.
After a moment, there was a tone indicting that the Doctor had done so, which was confirmed when he almost immediately spoke up.
“Hello, Dawn. Would you mind calling me back later? A bit busy just now.”
“No, Doctor. I will not call you back. We need to talk about Buffy.”
“Do we really need to do that just now? I mean, I'm sort of occupied. You see, I thought that maybe I could use a grappling hook, sort of climb up in order get Rose out of the gondola she's stuck in. So, I'm sort of dangling a hundred and forty feet in the air at the moment. There's also these, well, it's sort of a funny story. Did you know that ownership of a grappling hook is punishable by death on this planet. No one's been able to give me the story behind that because the men on the ground have been kind of busy shooting since they noticed what I was doing, but it seems pretty odd to me. Anyway, they're kind of lucky shots, so- ooh! Just dodged that one. Anyway, I really don't have time to talk right now, so maybe later.”
Then the jerk switched off his cell phone. Okay, so maybe getting shot at while dangling more than a hundred feet in the air from a rope was a pretty good excuse for not being able to talk right now, but she was so steamed at that guy.
Where did he get off reprogramming her sister? Okay, so the Buffybot was really more like her super strong, mentally challenged, robot friend then her sister, but hey, he still had no right, and, seriously, nineteen times a day? Oh, he was so getting rid of this program, or she would kick him in the nuts until even his stupid time lord powers couldn't regenerate them anymore.
“Dawn,” the Buffybot piped up again. “I was wondering if you had considered all available dating options while we're time travelling.”
Argh. She'd already started up again. You know what? Screw waiting. That jerk so deserved to get punished. She was going to call Rose.
Hitting speed-dial four, Dawn waited for her blonde friend to pick up.
“Doctor, is that you? I can see people shooting at you down there. Do you really think that this is the time for a conversation on the telephone?”
“No, Rose, it's me, Dawn.”
“Oh, sorry, Dawn, I'm a bit panicked just now. I mean, I'm not sure, but I think the men on the ground may have called in air support, as there's this sort of flying pickle-shaped thing which looks like it has a machine gun on it. Oh good! I think he's doing something with his sonic screwdriver.”
“Right, right,” Dawn replied, mostly ignoring the play-by-play. “He's actually what I needed to talk to you about. Rose, did you know that he's been reprogramming Buffy?”
“Wait, what? By Buffy, you mean your sister? He's been reprogramming your sister? Are you sure?”
“Yep. Apparently he's put some sort of dating program in her head, so that she'll try to set me up with his TARDIS.”
“He can do that? I mean, how dare he? He can't just go putting programs in people's heads! How do I know he hasn't put one in my head or yours? Oh, oh God!”
Huh? Did Rose not realize that the Buffybot was a robot? Of course, it was still unacceptable, but she couldn't see the Doctor messing with human minds, or else she would never have agreed to travel with him. Now that she thought about it more carefully, she couldn't actually recall anyone mentioning to Rose that the Buffybot wasn't human. After all, the Doctor knew and Dawn knew, so they must have just assumed that she would figure it out too. Maybe she should correct the misconception.
Rose had to at least know that something was up with the Buffybot, as she seemed to treat the robot kindly, but as if she was a mentally-ill child, which, now that Dawn thought about it, was not that poor a description of the Buffybot's usual mentality. Then again, maybe correcting Rose's misconception could wait for a bit later, as she seemed to have worked herself into quite a state already.
“I just can't believe he'd do something like this! Don't worry, Dawn! When he gets up here, I'll-I'll- well I'll do something which he's going to regret! And he's definitely going to take out whatever he put in Buffy's head. I promise.”
A few moments and furious remarks later from Rose, the two finished their call, as Dawn absently sat down at a table with the Buffybot. Okay, so maybe lying to Rose like that wasn't very nice, but, hey, it wasn't a real lie! It was just one of those lying by omission things. Anyway, even if Rose did slap the Doctor and yell at him a bit while he was being chased by aliens with guns, that jerk so deserved it. Although, maybe if he came back with a few bullet wounds and fixed what he had done to the Buffybot she'd forgive him.
“Dawn, you should know that part of a healthy romantic relationship is sharing common interests, like time travelling and computing numerical solutions to high-dimensional systems of quantum mechanical partial differential equations at high speeds. These are the sort of things you share with your partner in a healthy and happy relationship.”
Screw it. She was never forgiving him for this.