Another boring weekend spent at home with
the cat and a tub of low calorie ice cream. Not only was Debbie’s life a complete non-starter but also it was a date
free non-starter. She’d tried everything to get men to notice her, even surgery but to no avail. She just had to face
facts on a planet with an 80% female to male ratio she’d either have to walk around naked to get a guys attention or
Of course the other alternative was even less attractive, she could never look at another woman clothed never
mind anything more and she’d had plenty of offers. Specially after getting these enlarged. Debbie wished her life could
change, that she could meet just one guy who liked her, that she could be someone.
She brushed the cat to one side as it
tried to go to sleep on her. She won’t even get one number in the lottery; typical knowing her luck but she looked at
her state issued ticket and hoped that it would be her.
The first number, 5, yes she had that one. The second was 34, again
she had that. Could she get three numbers and win a 50 zarg note? Yes, 17 dropped out of the machine. The next number came
out, she couldn’t see what it was, yes it was 43. Four numbers! She had four numbers! That would give her enough money
to be with a man for almost ten whole minutes, her luck had finally changed. She actually jumped to her feet and screamed
when the fifth number emerged from the draw machine, it was 27! She picked the cat up and kissed his nose. “I’m
She put the cat back down on the chair and continued to dance about. There was still the final number
to draw, this was the big one. This number could alter fate for someone, this number could give her the wealth and position
she had so longed for, as queen of her people she could have her pick of the men and she wished for the day she could get
a guy to hold her in her arms and actually want to be with her for who she was. The sixth and final number emerged, 36! 36!
36! She’d won, she was the queen of her people. Fate had chosen her to be the ruler of her planet, after weeks of anticipation
finally someone had a winning ticket and it was her!
There was a number to dial, she quickly registered her winning ticket
and was overjoyed to discover that there was only one winning ticket, her ticket. They confirmed that she was now the official
monarch of their people and within an hour she and her cat were whisked out of her tower block and headed to the royal palace
where she would be officially crowed as queen.
The Chief Cleric looked at the cheap tart on the monitor. “How
are we going to make that look like the mother of a nation? It’s just not possible, she’s just not suitable for
The Holy Mother looked at her worried colleague. “You’ll pull it off, after all if I can
make the lowest prostitute look like a holy and saintly nun in a week you can manage something a little less demanding from
that woman by lunch time.”
“I suppose you’re right, we can
but try. After all it’s not like she’ll care what she looks like once we’ve terminated her vital essence
is it? The old king didn’t care for much at all except that we dusted him once a month so that he didn’t look
tatty when he did audiences. When they die they loose all concern in the affairs of living, this one’s got even less
interest in her appearance than her cat.”
“Still, we must give
them no cause for alarm until they’re in the mortification chamber and their bodies are broken down and rebuilt out
of more durable materials so that their dead brains don’t feel any loss of functionality. We need them to communicate
with our gods with their sanity still intact do we not?”
so, still you always knew you could trust someone with no arms or legs, after all there was no way they could escape, at least
until they went insane and started eating the flowers.”
Debbie looked around her palace, there were two male
guards escorting her. Two men giving her their undivided attention, she even flirted with them, teasing them and hoping that
she could talk them into all sorts of activities she had only dreamed about until now. She was their queen and they were hers
to command after all, but could she get them to love her for who she was? Could they love the woman, the living, pulsating,
biological me and not the rigid, controlled title they swore to obey? Do they even like pasta? She wondered where they were
taking her to, that High Cleric bloke said that she needed to be prepared for her inauguration. Would she really hear the
gods speaking to her? She didn’t hear anything right now except for the beating of her heart in her chest.
room was quite small really; it was sparse furnished too with just enough stuff to indicate that the room was actually used
from time to time. The main centre of attention was the door in the far wall; it swung open to reveal that it was just large
enough for a person to go inside. The guards escorted Debbie into the small room and closed the door. This was very weird,
what was that sound? Was it the gods whispering to her? Something stung her ankles and she looked down to see that metal rods
had pierced her feet and her holding her immobile. This should hurt more. She thought as she struggled but there was very
little pain. Her head felt cloudy and she didn’t feel the rotating disc of steel sever her head from her body. She just
felt very light as the drills punched into her skull and hot chemicals were poured into her head to solidify her brain. After
that she didn’t really care as her discarded body was shredded and pieces of it reused to build her a better one that
would never rot or putrefy. Even the flesh from her head was removed and reapplied, her whole body had been destroyed and
remade but she didn’t care either way about it.
The High Cleric and the Holy Mother stood waiting in anticipation.
“This is taking too long.” The High Cleric muttered.
“Have patience.” The Holy Mother whispered.
“The ways of the gods are subtle but always present.”
The door swung open slowly to reveal their queen standing
dressed in a robe made from left over body parts now altered into the finest silks. “I am ready for my first audience
with the gods.” Debbie knew beyond all certainty of the power of the gods to communicate their will to her.
will of the gods be praised!” The Holy Mother exclaimed in jubilation. “The Queen truly is one with the divine
power of the gods.”
“Come.” Debbie commanded her followers; they were being inefficient and wasting time.
“The gods are eager to issue their first command.” She walked quickly to the throne room, not noticing that her
physique never showed the slightest sign of fatigue. Once inside her court she sat down and waited for her servants to catch
up. “Come, come.” She waited until all of them were inside. “The gods are speaking to me.” Her head
felt clear and energised and her gods issued their first order. “They have spoken, we must kill someone new to our world,
she is known only as the Doctor.”
The TARDIS was quite quiet, since parting ways with Jean-Marc and Penny
the Doctor felt that the old girl was a less happy ship. She had tried telling a few jokes to Bobby, from the simple child-like
humour of youth to filthy jokes that would make Sergeant Benton blush. However there was little or no success with a guy who
was more interested in polishing the chrome parts of his motorcycle. The console room was running on automatic, a simple meandering
course through the vortex to avoid anything remotely dangerous. The TARDIS could run herself most of the time but the Doctor
preferred the hands on approach, although it did have its downside of broken fingernails.
Taking a walk through the corridors
the Doctor accidentally found herself outside of what had once been Haana’s room. She opened it after a second’s
consideration and walked inside. It was empty of course; she’d taken everything with her when she moved out. Almost
everything, a single picture of the two of them laughing and having fun on the holiday planet of Nekket 3. That planet had
a particularly high percentage of females to males, which Haana found especially appealing and the Doctor found herself largely
ignored by the authorities when they had to defeat a sudden invasion by the Helpers.
They had found a photo booth and on
the spur of the moment decided to have their picture taken. The Doctor picked the photograph up and ran her fingers over Haana’s
face. “I hope you’re not getting into too much trouble young lady.” She was about to put the photo back
down when the room lurched sideways and upways and every other ways.
Bobby struggled to move due to the rather
large weight of his motorcycle pressed on his chest. Somehow though he managed to shift its bulk and he felt a sharp stinging,
burning pain in his chest. “Must have broken a rib.” He pulled his pale blue denim shirt off and began to wrap
it around his chest.
Outside of his room Bobby tried to make his way to the console room but every step was a nightmare
of pain, every breath was a new torture to be endured. Even the time he had fallen off of his bike several years ago it had
not hurt nearly as much as this. Pausing for breath outside the console room door he didn’t want the Doctor to fret
and worry over his injury. He stumbled into the console room, not as graceful as he had hoped, only to find that it was empty.
From somewhere deep inside the TARDIS he heard a deep solemn chiming sound. The cloister bell! The Doctor sad that this was
some sort of warning system so he made his way over to the console just in time to see a number of lights start to flash red.
“What’s happening?” He asked himself. “Why isn’t the Doctor here when she’s needed?”
am here.” The Doctor stood in the doorway holding the broken photograph. Pieces of the broken glass had cut her hands
and her own blood dripped onto the floor. “You didn’t touch anything did you hmmm?” She began to press the
auto repair systems command sequencer controls but it did very little. “I hope we don’t get stranded on some backwater
little planet again. The last one took forever to escape from, even after I had repaired the TARDIS.”
the Doctor at work. “I suppose you want me to stop standing about and looking pretty?”
The Doctor looked over
at her companion. “If you like, I’ve got everything under control…more or less.” With a whoomph the
console belched forth a huge cloud of brown smoke.
“What’s going on?” Bobby asked. “Are we going
“No, not if I can help it.” The Doctor scanned for nearby planets to land on. “If I
can only get us down safely. That planet, its Nekket 3. Is that serendipitous or am I just a ham fisted meddler in things
she has no business meddling in?”
Bobby looked at the Doctor and couldn’t help but smile. “Can I plead
the 5th on that one Doctor?”
“Oh very well, just this once.” The Doctor kept an eye on the controls.
“Now why don’t you do something useful, you know how to make a pot of tea by now surely?”
to leave and clutched his side when a fresh burst of pain exploded inside his chest.
The Doctor ran her hand over the source
of Bobby’s pain. “Yes, I’d say you’ve broken two ribs. I’ve told you about that bike before
haven’t I hmmm? Once we’ve landed we can get you sorted out. I remember studying under Florence Nightingale when
I was younger, remarkable woman although very scary.” She returned her attention to making sure the TARDIS didn’t
drift off course during the final stages of the manual landing.
Debbie listened as the gods spoke again, they told
here where to find the evil Doctor and her vile servent. They commanded her to despatch her soldiers to seek, locate and capture
them at once. She gave the command to her Chief Cleric.
“At once majesty.” The Chief Cleric left the throne
room to issue the queen’s commands and also a couple of his own. “The queen orders that Cardinal Fannagin, Deacon
Hannop and Bishop Geraminda be executed for high treason at once. Also there are a couple of traitors in the royal gardens
that need capturing.” Well those traitorous priests deserved to die; they had blocked his proposal to adopt a more fundamental
approach to the church of the gods. They all but signed their death warrants with their heresy; he was saving their souls
by killing them before they did anything blasphemous.
They emerged from the TARDIS, Bobby sporting a grey cotton
t-shirt over his taped up ribs and his oil stained denim jeans that had once been blue but were now more of a grey colour.
Doctor wore one of her less favourite dark red velvet trouser suits with a black blouse embroided with red flowers on it and
a red silk handkerchief poked out of her breast pocket in lieu of a posy of orchids. She handed Bobby a large silver flask.
“Here, you may as well make yourself useful. Lets explore over here shall we?” She set off towards a large stone
Bobby looked around at all the flowers and stuff. “I think we’re in some kind of garden, they must
pay some one an awful lot to keep it tidy.”
“Yes.” The Doctor replied cryptically. “I wonder where
they all went to. Oooh, lets throw pennies into the fountain and make wishes.” She produced to shiny copper pennies
and handed one to her best friend. “Gentlemen first, that’s the local custom of this planet as I recall.”
flipped the coin with his thumb and it tumbled through the air before landing in the water with a small splash. “I wish
“Don’t say it out loud.” The Doctor shouted. “You can’t tell anyone your
wish or it won’t come true.”
“Well it won’t anyway.” Bobby replied. “But if we do find
a million dollars worth of gold it’s mine.”
“Handy for fighting Cybermen.” The Doctor stated before
tossing her coin into the fountain. “It’s just a pity I sort of wiped them all out. Of course there is the chance
we will come across them if we travel back in time.”
“How is that possible?” Bobby asked. “If they
don’t exist anymore how can you go back and encounter them?”
The Doctor laughed. “The TARDIS is a time
machine silly. If we were to witness the destruction of Earth, it’s not that spectacular by the way, we could then travel
back in time and pop in to see Jean-Marc and Penny. Everything has its own time Bobby, you, me, planets, even time itself.
Then everything should begin all over again. It’s happened before, it will happen again.”
be another me?” Bobby asked. “In the next universe I mean.”
The Doctor shrugged her shoulders. “I’ve
no idea, does it really matter in the end? You’re here now with me and that bench would make an excellent place to stop
for a nice cup of tea.” She took the flask off of Bobby then rushed over to the bench, sat down and poured two cups.
“Yes, look at that view. The trees, the hedges, the flowers, the soldiers with guns. Drink up, we’re about to
Bobby put his hands up when they pointed the business end of their guns at him. “Erm, hi there.”
Doctor put her cup down after finishing her tea. “How do you do gentlemen? I’m the Doctor and this is my best
friend Bobby. Would any of you big strong men like a jelly baby? They’re very nice.”
Sergeant Arednnos knocked
the white paper bag out of the traitor’s hand. “Quiet scum, treason is a capitol offence. You’re lucky we’ve
got orders to take you into custody instead of killing you now and letting the animals eat your filthy carcasses.”
you considered anger management?” The Doctor asked as her hands were tied behind her back. “I’m a Doctor,
you can tell me anything.”
Bobby remained silent as they were frog marched into a squat stone building and they were
thrown into a cell together.
“This won’t do at all.” The Doctor took her hands from behind her back and
held the rope she had been bound with in one of her hands. “I’ll have to tidy this place up, you don’t have
the phone number for Changing Cells do you hmmm?”
Bobby shook his head. “How did you untie the rope?”
Doctor tapped the side of her nose. “If I told you it would spoil the magic. Now lets get you untied so that you can
give me a hand making this place habitable. When you’ve spent as much time in dungeons as I have you tend to get a little
particular about the facilities. Now that can be the boys corner and this can be the girls corner, not that I need to go but
I can try and weave a partition out of this straw for you if you like.”
Bobby looked at the Doctor. “Do you
really think they’ll keep us in here for very long? They’re just keeping us here until they’re ready to
“Thank you Mr Optimism 2001.” The Doctor joked. “Seriously though, we have to look
on the bright side of life.”
“Are you quoting Monty Python?” Bobby asked.
“Is it that obvious?”
The Doctor asked. “I’d have thought I could have gotten away with that one by now. Don’t be so glum, they
didn’t confiscate the rest of the tea.” The Doctor waved the flask and was about to pour them both a cup when
a guard walked into their cell and confiscated the flask. “Hey!” The Doctor shouted. “That was uncalled
for, I’ll bring your entire government crashing down if you’re not careful.”
“Why don’t we
just escape Doctor?” Bobby asked.
The Doctor looked sharply at her companion. “Escape and not know who’s
captured us? Go through time and space not knowing who imprisoned us here? I’d never sleep at night not knowing.”
chuckled to himself. “You don’t sleep at night remember? You like to arrange your teapots into different orders.
Last night it was colours and the night before that it was shape.”
“Well there’s nothing wrong with being
very particular. Look lets not argue about who said what and who got us captured, I forgive you.”
Bobby just shook
his head and began to examine the crude metal bars of the single window of their cell.
Debbie sat on the throne
as the gods spoke to her once more. They revealed part of their plan to her. “Chief Cleric, the gods demand the sacrifice
of one hundred citizens as a test of our faith in them. See to it please.” In life she might have felt something wrong
about this but death had removed any sense of morality she once had. “I require nutritional liquid to sustain me.”
my queen.” The High Cleric rubbed his hands together; the queen had just given him permission to eliminate one hundred
of her enemies. The god’s demands would be met and the heretical enemies of the queen would be removed in one perfect
act. He felt a tear roll down his cheek and gave thanks to the gods for their wisdom.
The cell door opened and
three guards entered it. “Oooh look Bobby, its raining men.” The Doctor ran her fingertips over the forearm of
the nearest guard. “He’s very bulky isn’t he?”
“I don’t think they’re here to
say hello Doctor.” Bobby said. “I think we’re about to meet some sort of nasty fate.”
better than you deserve you piece of scum.”
The Doctor frowned. “I know a certain someone who won’t be
getting a visit from Santa Claus this Christmas.”
“Do they have Christmas here Doctor?” Bobby asked.
but they have Tannestide, a ten day festival of games and puzzles and presents. Hannah asked for a Swedish girl as I recall,
she was most upset when all I could get her was a packet of jelly babies.”
“Be quiet scum, the queen wants
the pleasure of seeing your heads being cut off for herself. However I’m sure she’ll be satisfied with just seeing
one of you, so shut up if you want to add a few extra minutes to your worthless lives.”
The Doctor looked at the
guard, ready with a quip but she saw his hand on his sword so she remained silent.
Debbie looked up as the two
traitors were brought into her courtroom. “Are you the Doctor?” She asked the blonde woman.
“Yes I am.”
The Doctor replied. “I am known as the Doctor, cosmologically. I know I’ve got one of my cards on me somewhere.”
She clicked her fingers and one appeared in her hand.
“Show off.” Bobby whispered.
A guard nudged Bobby in his injured ribs. “You’re only making it worse for yourself.”
worse for myself?” Bobby shouted in agony, the pain in his ribs was unbearable. “You’re about to kill me,
how can it be worse?”
“We don’t have to cut your head off all at once.” The guard sneered and nudged
the prisoner in his injured chest again.
“Why kill us?” Bobby repeated. “We’ve done nothing to
harm you or your people.”
The Doctor coughed to attract everyone’s attention. “I can answer that one.
You see she doesn’t have any say in the matter at all; she’s just a puppet aren’t you hmmm? Just a puppet
on invisible string for the Bliss!”
“How dare you!” The Chief Cleric picked up the ornamental execution
sword and swung at the neck of the Doctor’s evil disciple.
However the Doctor, holding one of the guards regular
issue swords in her right hand, parried his swift blow. “It’s been a while since I’ve had a good duel, I
hope you’re up to the challenge.” She feinted to her left before attacking on the right.
Bobby watched as the
battle went back and forth between them, he cheered for his best friend to win and was not surprised when she disarmed the
priest and knocked him to the ground.
Debbie stood up, the gods were shouting all at once at her. The confusion in their
ranks was too much for her to hear what they were saying. “Stop, please. I cannot hear you properly. Speak clearly.
I do not understand.”
“Don’t listen to them.” The Doctor shouted to the queen. “They are
controlling your mind. Shut them out, don’t listen to them.”
“Must kill, must obey, serve, kill, obey,
my name is Debbie. I cannot kill, not my role.” Debbie fell down and rolled down the three stairs in front of her throne.
rushed forward to help the stricken monarch. “Are you ok?”
The Chief Cleric laughed. “You haven’t
won yet Doctor, your death will be the most joyous event of your life.”
“Bliss.” The Doctor scowled at
the possessed Chief Cleric. “So you really are here. I’ve died before and on the whole I think I’ll decline
giving it one more try if it’s all the same with you.”
The Chief Cleric got to his feet. “Kill this body
and I will simply take another, yours perhaps, or your friends, maybe everyone on this planet. You’ll never be free
of us Doctor, never!” He wrapped his hands around the Doctor’s throat and began to squeeze the life out of the
Time Lady, the Doctor’s sword fell out of her hand on to the stone floor with a clang.
Bobby rushed over to the Doctor
and pulled the insane Priest off of her. He lashed out with a punch that sent the religious man tumbling unconscious to the
Debbie stood up; her body could not be damaged so she didn’t check for any. “The gods were a lie, they
cared nothing for my people did they?”
The Doctor looked at the queen. “No, the Bliss is a parasite. It was
using you and your people to recharge itself. You see I caused it a great deal of damage when I repelled it from my planet,
it must have come here to recharge itself.”
“I have no purpose, I too am a lie. Destroy me Doctor, my body
is dead, how can I die?”
The Doctor felt the queen’s ear but there was nothing, no essence or aura at all.
“Hmmm, this may need some thought. Tell you what, why don’t you travel with us for a while hmmm? Maybe we can
find a new purpose for you? Tell me do you like tea Debbie?”
Bobby looked at the Doctor who nodded back at him. He
resigned himself to having to share his adventures with this dead woman; he just hoped she was a lot nicer to him than his
sisters ever were.
The Holy Mother looked down at the unconscious figure of the Chief Cleric. She picked up the
nearby sword and drove it through his heart. “We shall rebuild, yes and then the Bliss shall have its revenge on the
Doctor for her crimes. Guard, clear that away.” She sat down on the throne and waited for the Bliss to talk to her.