Summary: Ian and Barbara have an unexpected visitor on Halloween.
Notes: Written for Other_Kosch
"Penny for the Guy!"
"Bit early for it." Ian looked up from his marking and exchanged a look with Barbara. It wasn't even November yet.
"Maybe they wanted to do it over the weekend?" she suggested, although it was only Friday.
Ian went to the door anyway, digging into his pocket for some money. "Bit early, aren't you?" he said jovially, as he opened the door.
"Isn't that what you say on Halloween?"
He gasped, eyes open wide. "Susan?"
Her name brought Barbara to the door, peering over Ian's shoulder. She looked the same age as the last time they'd seen her. Although she was dressed in a black robe and black pointy hat.
"We landed in London and it's 1969 and I found you in a phone book." She smiled at her old teachers, not seeming to notice their surprise. "I always wanted to experience Halloween. It sounds like fun."
"When...? What...?" was all Ian managed to get out. Had the Doctor gone back for Susan? Or was this before she left? He was confused.
Barbara took charge, giving Ian a nudge so they could stand side-by-side. "Susan, where's the Doctor? Where are we?"
"He tried to lock you in the TARDIS." She had an apologetic expression. "Said it was too close to your own time and you shouldn't know the future. But you talked him into letting you go to the pub instead."
As she said it, Ian remembered that occasion. The prices in the pub had gone up in six years and consequently they'd done a lot more nursing of fewer drinks than they'd expected.
They've discussed the idea of going home. They were close to 1963, relatively speaking. But six years was a long time to be gone. A lot had changed, based on the price of drinks and the news they'd read in a newspaper someone else had abandoned. In the end they'd decided to carry on hoping they'd land in 1963 sometime. Besides, they weren't so sure they wanted to leave the Doctor and Susan, and stop having adventures just yet.
When the Doctor and Susan found them in the pub they'd been cagey, not really saying where they'd been or what they'd been doing. Now he understood why.
"Ah, Barbara. And Chesterton." The Doctor appeared from round the side of the house. Goodness knows what he'd been doing there. "Susan said she was sure the two of you would get married."
Ian frowned. By the end of the that evening in the pub he remembered thinking that he always wanted Barbara around. But even he hadn't yet realised the depth of his feelings, never mind Barbara's.
"Aren't you going to invite us in?" the Doctor asked.
Ian rolled his eyes, but Barbara said, "Come in and have a cup of tea." She stood back from the door, dragging Ian by his cardigan. To Susan she said, "And I'll explain about Halloween. And Guy Fawkes."
Barbara would have one very willing pupil that evening.