Angelic Paranoia

Paranoidangel's Fanfic

Doctor Who/Sarah Jane Adventures

Vanishing Act

Rating: General
Summary: An old friend turns up at Sarah Jane’s.
Notes: In the current Big Finish UNIT series Harry is from the 80s but is in the current day due to an ‘incident’. Given that in future releases he’s travelling with the Fourth Doctor it seems likely the Doctor has something to do with it. I thought if he’s in the present who is the one person from his past he can see and would understand what happened?


Sarah Jane set her phone on her desk, mind a whirl. Kate had said she was sending an old friend. Her tone suggested it really was a friend, not an enemy. But who?

The Doctor was her friend, but if he was at UNIT why would Kate send him over? What could be wrong with him that UNIT couldn’t handle?

Or maybe it was someone else. Someone she knew that Kate wanted to keep out of UNIT business perhaps? Jo? But then why wouldn’t Kate say her name? It didn’t sound like she was ringing from somewhere where she couldn’t speak freely.

So why would Kate want it to be a secret until that person arrived?

She was no closer to coming up with any good answers when she heard a car pull up outside. She went over to the attic window to see a soldier get out of the front of the car. He went around it to stand on the pavement and look up at Sarah Jane’s house, but stayed there. At least Kate had remembered Sarah Jane’s request to have no soldiers on her property.

When the passenger door opened, the person who stepped out certainly wasn’t a solider. He was well-dressed and someone she hadn’t even considered Kate would send. Someone she’d given up on ever seeing again: Harry Sullivan.

She raced down the stairs and opened the front door.

He stood on her doorstep, one hand poised to ring the bell. “Hello, Sarah.” He looked exactly the same as the last time she’d seen him. Somehow he hadn’t aged a day. Even though it had been decades. Nor did he look at all surprised to see her looking much older.

“How–” No. She was letting her emotions get the better of her. If this was impossible than chances were it was a trick. Maybe it hadn’t been Kate on the phone, but someone pretending to be her. Or it had been her, but someone forced her to do it. UNIT could have been taken over by aliens.

“Are you really Harry Sullivan?” At least she’d got her breath back and it came out less breathy than it would have done a moment ago.

“Well, yes, I am.” He had a bemused look on his face and a tone to match it. If he wasn’t Harry then he was very good at pretending to be him.

“I need to be sure.” She wasn’t going to let herself be tricked. “Come up to the attic.” She motioned for Harry to enter and go ahead of her up the stairs, where she could keep an eye on him.

He did as she asked, but looked back over his shoulder at her. “I say, don’t you think this is a little paranoid?”

She shook her head. “Not if you have enemies for whom a deception like this is right up their street.”

“What have you been getting yourself into, old girl?”

She glared at his use of ‘old girl’, ignoring the worried expression on his face.

After that he was silent until they reached the attic. When he stepped inside he stopped, only leaving her a small gap to get around him. His jaw dropped as he looked around. “What have you been up to?”

“I’ve been busy,” she replied tightly. If he really was Harry she’d answer all his questions. If he wasn’t she needed to know before her heart overruled her head and she accepted his re-appearance in her life. “Mr Smith, I need you.”

Mr Smith emerged from the wall with his usual fanfare.

Harry turned to face him, eyes wide.

She had to ignore Harry, for now. “Mr Smith, scan Harry and see if he’s who he says he is.”

At least Mr Smith was familiar with him. When she’d first acquired Mr Smith she’d put him through his paces looking for any signs of Harry after the date he’d disappeared. But he’d found nothing. Which had been what she’d been expecting by that point, despite not being able to stop getting her hopes up.

“This is Doctor Harry Sullivan,” Mr Smith said after a few seconds, showing a corresponding photo on the screen, “Lieutenant in the Royal Navy attached to UNIT…”

But she’d stopped listening. “Harry! It really is you.” She threw her arms around him, feeling guilty for ever doubting it.

“Steady on, old girl.” But he hugged her back.

“I looked for you everywhere,” she said, finally letting him go. “But it was as if you vanished off the face of the planet.”

“Something like that,” he admitted, looking a little sheepish.

“Oh, Harry.” That could only mean one thing. She’d considered it but discounted it given that he and the Doctor never had got on. “I didn’t think you wanted to travel with the Doctor again.”

“I can’t say I did,” he agreed. “It’s a long story.”

“Come down to the kitchen and we can catch up.” She put her arm through his.

As they headed out of the attic he said, “I must say, you look exactly the same as when I last saw you.”

“Flatterer.” She laughed down the stairs, glad to have Harry back.

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