"So just let me go," the Doctor held up his hands.
"I'm afraid I can't do that," the man said. "You see, from what I understand this is your fault. It all stems from your abandonment of Jack Harkness."
"And who are you, an ex-lover? I haven't contacted Jack in over a millennium."
"And I have been waiting for over a millennium to find you," the man said angrily. "I didn't want this, okay?"
"What's your name?"
The man eyed him. "There's getting to be quite a few of us who are immortal," he said by way of an answer. "I'm surprised you don't have a list of who to avoid."
"What's your name?" The Doctor pressed.
"Rex. Rex Matheson." He laughed humourlessly. "From what I've heard it's your girlfriend's fault that I'm like this."
"My girlfriend?" Girlfriend. He didn't have a girlfriend. Wives, yes, but no girlfriend. Not since… he still refused to think of her.
"Of course, it took a few centuries and more than a few drinks to get the whole truth out of World War Two. Not sure that I know the whole truth yet, even. He does not like to talk about it. But still, it's definitely her fault that Jack's the way he is."
Bad Wolf. It had been ages since he'd thought of that name. The way Jack is – flirty? No. Immortal. "You're immortal?"
"Got it in one." Rex Matheson was a decent-looking fellow, looking like he was about in his mid-thirties. "Bit difficult, being immortal with no way of leaving the planet. Had to start working odd jobs, moving around place to place to avoid suspicion. Not easy for an ex-FBI agent," he laughed humourlessly.
"You're crazy if you think that I'd spend my every waking hour with him. I don't know. It's been a few decades. I understand it's been a lot longer for you, Doctor."
"It has. You said you waited a millennium to find me. Well here I am."
Rex ignored him. "You see, I read Torchwood's files. What was left of them. Went through the remains of Torchwood One in London, Torchwood Two in Glasgow and Torchwood Three in Cardiff. Even tried to find the fourth base. It seems that you're an enemy of the Crown. Now, I might still be an American citizen, but technically I still work for the Queen."
"You want off-planet, then? I can get you anywhere in the universe you like."
"No, Doctor. I just want you to know that things still happen on the Earth when you're not here. That some people die and some people live, and it's not always the right people." He thought of Esther, she'd been his best friend, shot while trying to save the world. The 'Miracle' had ended, but at a cost. Esther had died, and he had lived. "That the Earth doesn't stop needing protection when you're not around to save the day. Some people would say that that's when we need you."
"But not you," the Doctor surmised.
"I think you should leave this planet alone. That if we hadn't been so dependent on you in the first place, we would have been better prepared. That we wouldn't have lost so many." Esther is still at the forefront of his mind, now joined by people whose stories he'd nearly memorized after so many drinks with Jack. Esther, Ianto Jones, Owen Harper, Toshiko Sato, Suzie Costello, Karen Baldwin, James Unsworth, Alex Hopkins, Rhydian, Llinos King, Greg Bishop, Tilda Brennan, Charles Quin, Lydia Childs, Douglas Caldwell, Harriet Derbyshire, Gerald Kneale, Charles Gaskell, Alice Guppy, Emily Holroyd. "All dead in service of Queen and Country. All dead in service of an organization formed to protect the Earth." He hadn't realized that he'd rattled off every name. "People die, Doctor. The aliens don't stop invading when you take a holiday across the galaxy."
Chest heaving, Rex ended his tirade. "I just thought you should know," he muttered darkly, turning. "And I'm certainly no lover of Jack Harkness."