An Unearthly Child
Irving Braxiatel supported the Doctor all the way back to his rooms in the Citadel. He helped his weak and feeble brother into his single bed and left him be. He knew that a coma would heal the Doctor of all his ills.
The Doctor remained on the edge of consciousness, resisting the urge to fall into a coma. Truth was he did not want to fall into a coma. The Doctor wanted to find Artemis.
There had to be a reason she had been deleted from history. The Doctor had used the Chaos Engine to erase the Revolution from history. There was chance that she could be alive but instead Artemis had been completely obliterated from history.
Not even the Time Lords could remember her existence. Yet the Doctor remembered her. Maybe there was something was wrong with time.
A warm hand touched his worried brow, interrupting his train of thought. The Doctor reached out and touched the hand on his forehead.
"You should be in a hospital" said the owner of the hand.
"Hrmm no of course not, hospitals became extinct of Gallifrey over a million year ago. Who needs hospitals when the Gallifreyans can just regenerate or go into a healing coma? The Time Lords have evolved beyond the need for medical care" berated the Doctor, with his eyes closed.
"You don't have hospitals but yet you still have Doctors. It's sad how cold Gallifrey has become. When I was a child, Gallifrey used to be so warm" said the soft female voice.
The ardent female voice reminded the Doctor of a time when he was young. His cousins had been bullying him. They had destroyed his train set and Cousin Glospin had spent most of the evening mocking him. He had brought up his embarrassing test scores and the fact that Quences had been considering him for the army.
So the Doctor had taken refuge in the creaky old barn behind the House of Lungbarrow. The Doctor had spent many a night there, crying in a wooden cot. He had been cowering under the sheets when Brax and Innocent had come to check on him. They pleaded with him to come back to the House but the Doctor had ignored them. He didn't want to join the Chancellery Guard. He was smarter than all of his Cousins combined. Just because he couldn't be bothered with Badgers stupid tests doesn't mean he deserved to be shoved into an army.
A sound had disturbed his crying. Someone had shouted out a name from far away. He had got out of the bed to investigate the noise when a hand had grabbed his leg from under the cot. The Doctor had frozen, too terrified to move an inch. Then that charming female voice had spoken to him.
"It's okay. This is just a dream. Just lie back again. Just lie back on the bed. It will all be okay if you just lie down and go to sleep. Just do that for me. Just sleep".
The Doctor had done as the female voice had advised. He got back under the covers and tried to sleep. But his emotions continued to overrule his control and tears poured down his face. A soft hand tenderly began stroking the Doctor's hair. He could feel her warm breath on the back of his neck.
"Listen" whispered the women.
"This is just a dream. But very clever people can hear dreams. So, please, just listen. I know you're afraid, but being afraid is all right. Because didn't anybody ever tell you? Fear is a superpower. Fear can make you faster and cleverer and stronger. And one day, you're going to come back to this barn. And on that day you're going to be very afraid indeed. But that's okay. Because if you're very wise and very strong, fear doesn't have to make you cruel or cowardly. Fear can make you kind".
The words from the dream stuck with him forever as did the voice who spoke those words.
Focusing on reality, The Doctor opened his eyes and was stunned by the light pouring through the skylight above him. His eyes quickly acclimatized to the light but were still blurry around the edges. The Doctor turned his eyes to the owner of the hand and his hearts skipped a beat. Standing over him was Artemis.
"Oh look at you. I can just hear the gears turning in your head. You're asking yourself, why I am still alive. I did die after all. Well the answer is obvious. When you used the Chaos Engine to rewrite history, you created a paradox. If the Tempest Revolution never occurred then I should be alive but if I am alive then the Tempest Revolution did occur because my sacrifice allowed you to use the Chaos Engine to make sure the Tempest Revolution never occurred" explained Artemis.
"Hrmmm, yes quite. That is completely obvious" said the Doctor, sarcastically.
"So I no longer exist. I am neither alive nor dead although I won't be like that for long. The Time Lords are already trying to resolve the paradox. Right now the Celestial Intervention Agency are covertly changing the timeline. Soon I will be erased from existence. I am a ghost" explained Artemis.
The Doctor tried to sit up but was too weak to move.
"There has to be something we can do. Maybe...".
"My fate is sealed Doctor but your fate however is yet to be written. The question remains whether you will accept the call of Time and become her champion" stated Artemis.
The Doctor looked puzzled.
"Time, Champion" questioned the Doctor?
"In the Dark Times, all of Gallifrey worshipped Time, Death and Pain as gods. They would chose champions who would best embody their ideals and would set out a special destiny for them. Most people would call them gods but you Time Lords would call them 'abstract universal entities'. Eternals that acts as a living embodiments of physical concepts" explained Artemis.
The Doctor scowled at this.
"I decided my destiny. Not some Eternal with delusions" grumbled the Doctor.
Artemis smiled affectedly at this new elderly Doctor. The events of the past couple of days had changed this idealist. There seemed more fire in this old man. More stubborn determination than there was in the young man that Artemis had first met. Yet a twinkle of the kind young man still remained.
"That path will always be open to you. Although you should not insult destiny. It was destiny that brought us together to begin with" instructed Artemis.
The Doctor snorted derisively at this.
"Hrrmmm it wasn't fate. Nothing of the kind my dear lady. It was a giant mutant rat" said the Doctor.
Artemis shook her head.
"You may have mastered the basic principles but you still have much to learn about the movements of the universe. Now that I am beyond the mortal coil I see that my destiny is connected to yours. Sometime in the future, there will be an impossible girl who will save your life. She will leave echoes of herself all through time. I can see it now. I am one of those echoes. We shall meet again Doctor, in another place and time" prophesied Artemis.
The Doctor was confused.
"When shall I meet you again" questioned the Doctor?
"When you least expect it" said Artemis.
Her body had begun to turn transparent. Her physical form being deleted from the fabric of reality. The Doctor grabbed Artemis's hand and squeezed it tight.
"Don't leave" pleaded the Doctor.
"Hush Doctor. Go to sleep Doctor. It will all be over soon. Just do me one last favour" asked Artemis?
"Name it" murmured the Doctor.
He was on the edge of falling into a healing coma. The blackness was beginning to take over. Artemis herself had almost faded out of existence like a candle that had almost burned out.
"Run you clever boy and remember" said Artemis.
With a small pop, Artemis faded out of existence. The Doctor felt shattered. Even worse than when Artemis had died in his arms. Thankfully the Doctor didn't have to dwell on it long. The blackness had swallowed him up and the Doctor fell into a coma.
Deep in the base of the Citadel, the Doctor's crashed and broken TARDIS was brought into the repair bay. The tired old Type 40 was still smoking from the day's events. Two engineers with the orange overalls tried to enter the smoking TARDIS but rancid white smoke threatened to suffocate them.
"Blimey, that young Timey really did a number on this old capsule. He's lucky that he didn't rupture the outer shell" complained Andro, one of the dark haired engineers.
The other engineer with the black beard frowned in annoyance.
"Yeah, looks like that silly Timey has fried the mercury fluid links. All this smoke is steamed Mercury. Shame really, this antique should be in museum" said Fabian, the other engineer.
"Wonder if this 'Antique' has voice controlled fan cause we're not getting otherwise. Not unless you want to suit up into one of those old space suits" joked Andro.
"One way to find out" determined Fabian.
Fabian stuck his head as close to the TARDIS door without breathing in any of the toxic fumes.
"TARDIS, extractor fans on" bellowed Fabian, through the open TARDIS door!
A loud buzzing sound filled the inside of the TARDIS as the white smoke was sucked up by the fans. With the smoke all gone, the engineers were able to enter the console room. The once lush green room was now burnt and blackened. Andro walked up to the charred stone console and brought up a hand held scanning unit. After consulting the small box interface, Andro turned back to fellow engineer.
"Most of this Type 40's systems are busted. Even with the repair functions fixing all the damaged circuits it's still going to be years before this old ship is fully operational. The Mark 1 directional circuits are burned though. The chameleon circuit has seen better days. The TARDIS's temporal grace it's on the fritz. Also the mercury fluid links needs refilling and Zeiton 7 needed to generate orbital energy has almost burned through. Rassilon, even the fault locator is faulty. This ship needs a LOT of work" complained Andro!
Fabian went up to the stone console and pressed a few buttons that weren't burned out. With a sudden flash of light, the grey stone room was replaced with a bright white room with white roundels. A bank of computers stood on the back wall and massive hexagonal shape on the roof which acted as a new age chandelier. The console had changed too.
No longer made of stone, the new console was white and made of wood. The stone buttons were replaced by dials and switches. Black meters were placed around the white hexagonal console with flashing lights. The two engineers look around in disgust.
"Oi, who changed the desktop theme to this white mess" cried Fabian, in surprise?
"Must have been the ship herself. The repair circuits must have kicked in. This new theme must have been picked to suit that crazy Timey who was operating her before. Could you go outside and check if the outer shell has changed" asked Andro?
Fabian nodded and made for the main doors. Leaving Andro to mess around with switches and dials in search of the controls for the Chameleon circuit. When Fabian got outside he was amazed to see that the Pyramid had transformed into a blue box with a glowing light on top. The words 'police public call box' was imprinted just below. Fabian also spotted some primitive instructions written on the door.
They said 'Police Telephone Free for Use of Public Advice and Assistance Obtainable Immediately Officers and Cars Respond to Urgent Calls Pull to Open'.
"Hey Andro, the outer shell has transformed into some blue retrograde box. Try restoring the factory settings on the Chameleon circuit" yelled Fabian, into the open doors of the TARDIS!
"I am trying. Just give me a moment" Andro yelled back!
With a lot of noise and frantic movement before the outer shell of the ship began to transform from a blue box into a grey metal cylinder. A facsimile of the grey metal cylinders that surrounded it, but a loud groaning came from inside the TARDIS. To Fabian's amazement the ship changed back into a blue box. It was rare for a TARDIS to be so wilfully and it was even rarer to see a TARDIS disobey an operator.
The Time Lords had grown there TARDIS's to obey there commands but this ship was an anomaly. What crazy Timey would want to fly a ship like this thought Fabian?
"Are you sure you know what you're doing back there? The ship has just turned back into the blue box" complained Fabian.
Andro growled in frustration and a loud bang could be heard from inside the ship. To Fabian, it sounded like Andro had used a heavy laser wrench to smash the console. With a great deal of complaining, the TARDIS transformed back into the large metal grey cylinder. Andro walked out of the square metal door.
"I've jammed the Chameleon circuit so that wretched ship won't be changing into that blue box anytime soon. I vote we scrap that ship. We don't have the spare parts to repair a defunct Type 40" complained Andro.
Fabian rolled his eyes.
"Easier said than done. It will take years to decommission this Type 40. Hundreds of years" complained Fabian.
"Give the job to Quadrigger Stoyn. He's the only one with the patience to decommission a Type 40. He also has a soft spot for antiques" decided Andro.
The old Type 40 in question was listening to everything that the two engineers had said. She wasn't afraid of being decommissioned. This old TARDIS knew that her Doctor would back sooner or later.
The TARDIS had been preparing the way by changing her desktop theme, renovating her wardrobe, library and stocking her Kitchens with plenty of tea. Her Doctor would come back for her and together they would see the stars. All she had to do was wait. Hopefully her Doctor wouldn't take too long.