Doctor Who: The Bright Asylum

The Tomb of Seven Doors

The first foot he sets on Perpetuua, Rassilon suspects, will be a tentative one.

It’s been so long since he was there. The Doctor was there once, he remembers as he reaches for a control panel and pops it, his long hands fiddling idly with a silvery wire there, a red and blue one here.

Or two.

Or three.

Oh yes, Rassilon knows about that. The Doctor killed four living beings there, and saved a thousand more. How like his old friend. How like his new one.

Still, by the time of the War he is thinking of now, the joys of such simple pleasures as solitude had long escaped his mind.

And when his wife had… well, best not to dwell.

Move forward.

Just move.

It is such a funny thing, really; to speak the words to oneself in grateful comfort that a former friend turned friend again had struggled with until a very short time ago.

The Doctor was a poster child for trouble of every sort, baked, deep-fried, fire-roasted, candied, broiled, boiled, chilled or grilled, yet he seemed to come through better, even if he also seemed, in general terms, to be the last to know.

And speaking of through-way traffic…

Rassilon eases up on the shuttle’s clutch, having switched to manual during spatial -night.- No day really, now, just an endless night… full of not even the lights of stars… and the reason for that is pummeling the shuttle’s sensors now.

A slip of nothing that leads to something is spinning in quincunx there, in space, in front of his humble vessel. Waiting to swallow him.

When everything is aligned, it will consume the shuttle and its occupant, gulping them down its gaping black maw like the judgment of some giant monster from old tales.

But the coordinates are exact; he and the shuttle will exit the petals of an opening flower and realign with the universe on the other side, folded like a paper bird along remembered lines.

It’s been a long time he’s visited Exo-Space.


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