𝟘𝟝𝟜 ▹ 𝔼𝕟𝕕 𝕠𝕗 𝕋𝕚𝕞𝕖 (ℙ𝕒𝕣𝕥 𝟟)
THE DOCTOR IS WORKING on some wiring when he sees a bright object streaking towards the planet. Violet feels unease creep into her being at the appearance of the object, every instinct in her body warning her of an impending danger to come - something more malevolent than her birth father and everything he’s ever done throughout time and space. She shares a worried look with her husband, a pained smile spreading across her lips when she sees that he’s struggling to come up with a plan that’ll keep everyone alive.
“Aye, aye,” Wilfred says. “Got this old tub mended?”
“Just trying to fix the heating,” the Doctor murmurs.
“Oh. I’ve always dreamt of a view like that. Hee, hee. I’m an astronaut. It’s dawn over England, look. Brand new day. My wife’s buried down there. I might never visit her again now. Do you think he changed them, in their graves?”
“No, not your fault.”
“Oh, 1948, I was over there. End of the Mandate in Palestine. Private Mott. Skinny little idiot, I was. Stood on this rooftop, in the middle of a skirmish. It was like a blizzard, all them bullets in the air. The world gone mad. Yeah, you don’t want to listen to an old man’s tales, do you?”
“I’m older than you - we both are.”
“Get away,” Wilfred says, looking between Violet and the Doctor.
“I’m nine hundred and six,” the Doctor says.
Violet makes a strange sound. “I’m around four hundred.”
“What, really, though?” Wilfred asks.
“Yeah,” the Doctor says.
“Nine hundred years... Four hundred years... We must look like insects to you two.”
“I think you look like giants.”
“Listen, I, I want you to have this. I’ve kept it all this time, and I thought...” Wilf offers his revolver to the Doctor.
“No, but if you take it, you could-”
“No. You had that gun in the mansion. You could have shot the Master there and then.”
“Too scared, I suppose.”
“I’d be proud.”
“If you were my dad.”
“Oh, come on, don’t start. But you said, you were told he will knock four times and then you die. Well, that’s him, isn’t it? The Master. That noise in his head? The Master is going to kill you.”
“Then kill him first.”
“And that’s how the Master started. It’s not like I’m an innocent. I’ve taken lives. I got worse. I got clever. Manipulated people into taking their own. Sometimes I think a Time Lord lives too long. I can’t. I just can’t.”
“If the Master dies, what happens to all the people?”
“I don’t know.”
“Doctor, what happens?”
“The template snaps,” Violet answers for him.
“What, they go back to being Human? They’re alive, and Human. Then don’t you dare, sir. Don’t you dare put him before them. Now you take this. That’s an order, Doctor. Take the gun. You take the gun and save your life. And please don’t die. You’re the most wonderful man and I don’t want you to die.”
“Never,” the Doctor says with a smile.
“A star fell from the sky,” the Master’s voice says, coming through the comm system of the Vinvocci ship. “Don’t you want to know where from? Because now it makes sense, Doctor.”
“It’s an open broadcast,” Addams warns. “Don’t reply, or he’ll know where we are.”
“The whole of my life. My destiny. The star was a diamond, and the diamond is a Whitepoint Star. And I have worked all night to sanctify that gift. Now the star is mine. I can increase the signal and use it as a lifeline. Do you get it now? Do you see? Keep watching, Doctor. This should be spectacular. Over and out.”
“What’s he on about? What’s he doing?” Wilfred asks, panicking. “Doctor, what does that mean?”
“A Whitepoint Star is only found on one planet,” the Doctor tells him. “Gallifrey. Which means it’s the Time Lords. The Time Lords are returning.”
“Well, I mean, that’s good, isn’t it? I mean, that’s your people - both of your people.”
Violet takes Wilfred’s revolver and runs with the Doctor as four beat signal begins to beep inside the spaceship, as well as inside Violet’s mind. The Doctor runs into the flight deck, Violet and Wilfred not too far behind the Time Lords. The four beat signal can be heard clearly there, and it makes the cry in Violet’s mind to rise in pitch.
“What’s that?” Addams demands.
“Coming from Earth,” Rossiter informs. “It’s on every single wavelength.”
The Doctor is rushing around, working on bits and pieces.
“But you said your people were dead,” Wilfred protests. “Past tense.”
“Inside the Time War,” Violet replies, not sure what she should be doing right now. “And the whole War was Time Locked.”
“Like, sealed inside a bubble. It’s not a bubble but just think of a bubble. Nothing can get in or get out of the Time Lock,” the Doctor rambles. “Don’t you see? Nothing can get in or get out, except something that was already there.”
“The signal,” Wilfred says, something dawning on him. “Since he was a kid.”
“If they can follow the signal, they can escape before they die.”
“Well, then, big reunion. We’ll have a party.”
“There will be no party.”
“But I’ve heard you talk about your people like they’re wonderful.”
“That’s how I choose to remember them, the Time Lords of old. But then they went to war. An endless war, and it changed them right to the core. You’ve seen my enemies, Wilf. The Time Lords are more dangerous than any of them.”
“Time Lords, what lords?” Addams demands. “Anyone want to explain?”
“Right, yes, you. This is a salvage ship, yes? You go trawling the asteroid fields for junk?”
“Yeah, what about it?”
Violet grins widely, knowing what he is planning. “So, you’ve got asteroid lasers!”
“Yeah, but they’re all frazzled,” Rossiter sasses, giving the Doctor an irritated look.
The Doctor throws a lever and two gun alcoves open on either side of the flight controls. “Consider them unfrazzled. You there, what’s your name?” He motions to Addams and she replies in a dry tone. “I’m going to need you on navigation.” He turns to Rossiter. “And you, get in the laser-pod. Wilfred.”
“Yeah?” Wilfred asks.
“Laser number two. The old soldier’s got one more battle.”
“This ship can’t move,” Addams growls out in exasperation. “It’s dead!”
“Fix the heating?” The Doctor throws two levers forward, and the ship powers up.
“But now they can see us.”
“This is my ship, and you’re not moving it. Step away from the wheel.”
“There’s an old Earth saying, Captain. A phrase of great power and wisdom, and consolation to the soul in times of need.”
“What’s that, then?”
“Allons-y!” The Doctor powers the spaceship down towards the Earth and the spaceship dives through the atmosphere. “Come on! Come on!”
“You are blinking, flipping mad.”
“You two. What did I say? Lasers.”
“What for?” Rossiter yells through the comms.
“Because of the missiles,” Violet says in a ‘duh’ voice. “We’ve got to fight off an entire planet.”
Wilfred and Rossiter take their places in the transparent gunner’s domes, and everyone on the flight deck listens to the two talk, Wilfred trying to figure out how the laser guns work. The Doctor skims the ocean, dodging the missiles as Rossiter and Wilfred fire at the oncoming missiles. Wilf shoots down a missile and cheers, making Violet smile. They keep destroying missiles and the front window gets blown in, shattered glass flying everywhere.
“Lock the navigation,” the Doctor orders.
“Onto what?” Addams snarls.
“England. The Naismith mansion.” He runs around. “Destination?”
“Fifty kliks and closing. We’ve locked on to the house. We are going to stop, though. Doctor? We are going to stop?”
“Doctor?” Wilfred asks, his worry clear through the comms. “Doctor, you said you were going to die.”
“He said what?” Addams exclaims, probably second-guessing him now.
“But is that all of us? I won’t stop you, sir. But is this it?”
The Doctor pulls the spaceship’s nose up at the last moment. Violet then opens a hatch in the floor and, with the revolver ready, jumps down through the glass dome, the Doctor following a moment later. He lands hard on the marble floor beside her. She cannot hold the revolver and he cannot stand up. The five Time Lords have arrived - the Gate has been replaced by a white space with raised up two steps.
“My Lord Doctor. My Lord Master. My Lady Adrenilda,” Rassilon greets. “We are gathered for the end.”
: : : : : :
“Adrenilda” means “mother of the warrior” in German.