Author: Paranoidangel (paranoidangel42)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Prompt: 25) Being an artist is not just about making art...It is about delivering the vision one is given...and about doing the right thing without sparing oneself. -- Jessica Yeh (born 1941), Chinese-American artist, activist and founder of the Village of Arts and Humanities.
Summary: Jo Jones (née Grant) doesn't mind being put in a cell when there's something important she needs to say to a fellow environmentalist.
Author's Notes: Beta by hhertzof
Jo was used to cells and had been even before the days when it was the police who irregularly threw her in them. The difference now was that she didn't try to escape, since it only created more problems. It was one thing when aliens were likely to kill you or someone else if you stayed, but the police would let her go sooner or later. So when she was hustled towards a cell along with another woman, she didn't complain. But she was the only one who didn't.
"You've no right to put us in here!" Jessica struggled in the policeman's grasp as he propelled her along the corridor behind Jo and didn't stop shouting even when he closed the door, leaving her and Jo inside.
Jo sat quietly on the bed and waited until the young woman calmed down. It took a minute or two of her pounding on the door with her fists and shouting before she gave in and turned round, leaning her back against the door. Jessica's hands were red, but she kept them clenched and she looked like she was ready to hit someone. Jo sighed, knowing what was going to happen next. She'd met women like Jessica before.
Jessica was a newcomer to the world of environmental activism. She was fresh out of university and enthusiastic about changing the world. All Jo ever required was some passion, since the rest came later, so she'd happily brought Jessica along to the G8 protest. Jo planned to hold Jessica up as an example of how young people were prepared to fight, albeit peacefully, for the world their grandparents had created.
The media loved her which made Jo's job that much easier. Even Jo had to admit Jessica was more photogenic than Cliff. The trouble was that Jessica liked the attention a little too much. Jo realised she should have seen the signs earlier, but she hadn't wanted to see what was right in front of her.
Earlier today a group of people had decided that peaceful protest was getting them nowhere. There were always a few people like that, but this time Jessica was right in the middle of them. Jo had been unsuccessfully trying to stop her from throwing things at the police when the riot police arrived and arrested them all.
Now all they had to do was wait until Cliff bailed them out, but Jessica was too impatient for that.
"We can't let them treat us like this," Jessica said, her voice low and threatening.
Jo shook her head. "They're only doing their job."
"Because they're in it with the establishment." Jessica started pacing across the cell.
Jo wished she'd given Jessica more of an education before she brought her here. But Jessica was a bright girl and she'd sounded like she understood. "Who do you think is going to change things around here?"
Jessica shrugged. "Not the politicians we've got."
"Maybe not." Jo leaned back against the wall, watching Jessica and wondering when she would run out of energy enough to stay still. "But we can't just continue killing the planet while we wait for a different set to lobby."
Now Jessica halted mid-step and stared at her cell mate. "But you weren't doing anything."
Jo stood to face her. "We've been explaining what's wrong and giving them ideas of how to solve it. And the media attention we get puts more pressure on them to do something."
"Violent protest gets more media coverage." Jessica took a step forward, but Jo hadn't been intimidated by taller people since she was a child.
It was sad that Jessica was correct, but it didn't help their cause. "It doesn't get you the right coverage," she pointed out. "The public's sympathies are with the people having things thrown at them, not those doing the throwing."
"Maybe I should do it my way and you should do it yours and we'll leave each other alone." She turned her back on Jo.
Jo had hoped that by manoeuvring herself into getting locked up with Jessica would give her time to talk some sense into the girl. She stepped forward and put a hand on Jessica's arm. "Your grandfather will be disappointed to hear that," she said softly.
Jessica threw her hands up and stepped away from Jo's grasp. "Everyone's disappointed. Nothing I do is good enough for you, is it?"
"Oh, Jessica." She sighed. "I am proud of you. You've done what you want to do, not what everyone expects of you. Just like your father." She smiled, equally proud of him too.
Jessica turned back to Jo, angry again. "But it's all right to do what I want to, as long as it's what you want me to do, is that it?"
This was getting her nowhere, so Jo matched Jessica's tone. "If you're so determined to do the wrong thing, even when you can see it's wrong, then fine, you carry on." She sat back down and folded her arms, before adding, "I just think you should be sure what you're getting yourself into."
"What do you mean?" Jessica frowned.
Jo smiled and didn't say anything, just waited patiently. Jessica started pacing again, but didn't engage Jo in any more conversation. After an agonising ten minutes, the policeman returned and opened the door.
"You're free to go," he said to Jo.
Jo stood and stepped out of the cell, not looking back.
"Wait!" Jessica stood in the doorway, preventing the policeman from closing the door. "You're not leaving me in here."
Jo turned back to face her. "If you carry on the way you are you'll spend a lot more time in cells. I think you ought to find out what it's like before you make a choice." At least this cell was a pretty good one, and Jo had seen a lot to compare it with.
"I'm sorry, Gran," Jessica said, sounding desperate.
Jo shook her head. She wanted to believe Jessica, but it would take more than that before she really understood. A night in a cell might teach her a lesson. "I'll pick you up in the morning," she promised. She wasn't so heartless she could just forget about her. She nodded to the policeman, who closed the door on a now unresisting Jessica.
Jo tried not to think about the look on her granddaughter's face as she made her way out.