Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

Free copy left
You can read our best books
mythicaltunes would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

The Roots of Pain

By mythicaltunes

Other / Drama

Chapter 1

"Quite an impressive statue, though, you messed up on my nose. Made it a bit too long," the Doctor commented, tapping the part of his face in mention, the chains around his wrists clinking together. His guards' glares just deepened when they looked at him, their fingers tightening around their sharpened, wooden spears.

He hadn't meant to get himself captured, hadn't even meant to come here in the first place. These people hated him, for good reason, he supposed. From his perspective, he had been the good guy and these people had been the bad ones, but everyone was good in their own story.

"We wanted to remember what you looked like so that we would know if you came," one of the guards said. Her name was Aggie. The Doctor wondered if it was short for anything.

"Splendid. Now, what exactly do you plan on doing with me?" He was trying inconspicuously to fumble his sonic screwdriver out of the inside pocket of his jacket. It would release his cuffs and then he would be able to escape this place. It was called a Heligan Tree, a giant structure that came to the size of a small planet. These people lived here because of him. Around 900 years ago, he had kicked them off a planet they were trying to colonize and sent them off into space with hardly enough fuel to get anywhere. His reasoning had been that they were trying to wipe out the natives of the planet, something he was absolutely not going to sit by and let happen. He had betrayed these humans and sided with the natives to help them get their planet back. Apparently, generation after generation of these people had loathed him ever since.

"We will take you to trial," the Justiciar said. She was a tall, graying woman with a stern face, her form wrapped in green robes.

"But he already admitted who he is," Aggie said. She looked at him with a sneer, and his skin prickled uncomfortably. Was it really possible to sustain hate for so long? "We all know what he did. He's the Doctor, the man who betrayed our ancestors."

"They were trying to wipe out a native species to take a planet for their own!" the Doctor protested, becoming frustrated. Was he never going to make them see?

"A lesser species," Aggie said. "You won't be able to sway us. Every one of us have heard stories about the Terrible Doctor since we were babes. Manipulation will be useless."

The Justiciar glared at Aggie. "My job is to put him to trial and judge him."

"We all know he's guilty, Justiciar," Aggie sneered. "And we all know his punishment."

"And what might that be?" he asked, fear beginning to churn his stomach, hand still searching through his pocket. There had to be a way to get out of this! He was the master at escaping things!

"What have you got in your jacket?" Aggie asked, poking her spear at his chest. He quickly lowered his hands, clearing his throat.

"N-Nothing. Just looking for a handkerchief. I've got allergies, you see, and-"

"Strip him!"

"What? No! Don't touch me! Stop that!" A few of the guards had instantly come forward and were slicing his clothes away with their spears. His sonic screwdriver rolled out of the remains of his purple jacket, which Aggie bent to pick up, looking at it curiously. He was going to say something, but choked as his bow tie was violently torn off his neck.

"Stop! Can't I at least keep my trousers?!"

The guards froze, looking to Aggie for confirmation. She just nodded her head, then held up the sonic screwdriver.

"What's this?"

"It's mine. It's called a sonic screwdriver." The Doctor glared at her, though he knew he wouldn't be threatening in his current state, chained up and half naked. He was starting to feel very vulnerable.

"What's it do?"

Before he could give an answer, her thumb slipped over the button and she pressed it, expression curious. The chains suddenly fell away from his wrists, and with a shout of triumph, he shoved her and the surprised guards out of the way, and took off.

"Get him!"

The Doctor felt a burst of adrenaline as he sprinted away from his captors, but he began to feel hopeless as soon as he realized that he didn't have a plan. The TARDIS had been grabbed by vines first thing it had landed and he didn't even know how to get back to it. He didn't even have a shirt, for crying out loud!

His ponderings were interrupted as he was approached by guards with pointed spears at his front. He swiveled around on the dirt floor, looking for an escape, but it cost him time, and soon, he was surrounded on all sides.

"What do you want?" the Doctor gasped out, chest heaving from running.

"We want you to be punished," Aggie said, coming forward.

"But why?"

"You ruined our lives and left us here! We had absolutely nothing! Only each other and that broken ship you sent us off in! You betrayed us and shattered our hopes! Don't you think you should pay for that?" Her brown eyes were fierce with an angry fire that made the Doctor's knees go a bit weak.

"I don't think I get a say in all this."

"No, you don't." She made a motion with her hands and the guards closed around him, the chains going back on his wrists. His struggles were just met with spear points that nearly pierced his skin.

Oh, how am I going to get out of this? I always get out of things like this. Come on. Anytime now. I should be making my brilliant escape.

"You know," he commented to Aggie, "you have such a sweet name, for being such a fierce girl."

She narrowed her eyes at him. "It's only short for: Agony Will Be The Doctor's Eternal Punishment."

The Doctor swallowed hard, mouth going dry. He looked around nervously at the other people around him, spears still too close for comfort.

"Do you all have names like that?"

Aggie laughed, seeming to enjoy his fear. "Go on! Why don't you all tell him you names?"

Voices began to rise around him, and the words he could interpret twisted his stomach. How could these people hate him so much?

"Misery Will Be The Doctor's Final Emotion."

"Revenge Upon The Doctor."

"Eternal Pain For The Doctor."

"Death Is The Doctor's Rightful Place."

"Enough!" He suddenly screamed. He couldn't take it anymore. His fear was becoming a pulsing, living thing that nearly left him shaking. All these names… These people really named their children after their hate for him? Their loathing had driven their entire culture!

Aggie just smiled, and it sent a chill up the Doctor's spine.

"What do you think, Doctor?"

"I think that you're all raving lunatics!"

"Says the man who left us like this!" She came close, and he was forced back a step as her spear came up to his neck. He winced as the points at his back pricked at his skin.

"Aggie," one of the women said. "You mustn't kill him now. He has to face his punishment."

Aggie looked at the woman who had spoken, then back at the Doctor. It seemed an agonizingly long time before she finally stepped away.

"Very well. Bring him." She turned and began walking down one of the passageways, its walls coated in green leaves and vines. The Doctor had no other choice but to follow, completely surrounded by spears that kept prodding him to move forward.

The journey to wherever they were taking him was made in tense silence, and the Doctor kept trying to form escape plans in his head, but none of them were good enough to actually work. Whatever he did, it seemed as if he was stuck here.

He was forced into a dimly lit room with a domed ceiling of curving branches, the floor still dirt beneath their feet. Everything about it was unremarkable except for the chair that sat in the middle of the room. He didn't even know if it could be called a chair. The sight of it knocked him to his knees in the dirt and he had to be hoisted to his feet, body shaking, limbs gone weak and useless.

"Like it?" Aggie asked, a dangerous gleam in her eyes.

The Doctor didn't even look at her, horrified gaze still on that thing in the middle of the room. Dear god, that was meant for him, wasn't it?

There were three metal rings around the chair, one above, and two on either side. They were like halos from hell, each one holding various instruments of torture: blades of different sizes and designs, blowtorches, implements meant to crush his bones, syringes filled with colorful liquids that were probably acids and other horrible things… the list went on and on. And on the chair there were metal clamps that seemed like they would fit perfectly to his body: two for his wrists, two for his ankles, and one for his neck. It even looked like the back of the chair could be opened so that some of the tortures could be administered to his back.

"Now you can finish stripping him," Aggie said. "Wouldn't want clothes getting in the way of all that, now would we?"

The Doctor kicked and struggled as two guards began to undo his trousers. One took his foot right in the face and lay sprawled on the ground, unconscious.

"Hold him!" Aggie snapped angrily, rushing over to pull the unconscious man out of the way.

At this order, an arm suddenly wrapped around the Doctor's neck, choking him, a spear point coming to rest in the middle of his chest. He frantically brought up his manacled hands to try to pull the crushing arm away, feet still kicking, body still fighting to get away. He had to get out of this!

There were other spears pointed at him now, but he didn't care. The Doctor continued to fight madly. He even resorted to sinking his teeth into the arm that was around his neck. For that, he received a blow in the head and he lost his grip, the arm squeezing even tighter. If he hadn't had the respiratory bypass system, he assumed he would have been unconscious by now.

Sadly, his trousers had already been unbuttoned and his struggling had brought them down to his knees, but he at least had his boxers on. The fight wasn't to stay clothed; it was to stay away from that chair.

The Doctor froze, jaw dropping as a pained scream failed to leave his mouth, only coming out as a choked gurgle, as a spear suddenly entered the soft flesh of his right thigh. His eyes met Aggie's satisfied gaze, and she drove the spear in a little deeper, causing him to flinch and kick out with his left leg. His face had gone red from the exertion and the crushing arm around his neck.

"You're quite the fighter," she said, drawing a whimper from his lips as she gave the spear a twist. "As a warrior, I can't help but admire that, even though you are giving us quite a lot of trouble."

The Doctor was in no position to respond, his voice taken from him for the moment. Besides, he didn't even have anything clever to say.

He managed a gasp as Aggie yanked the spear out, the movement trailing blood through the air.

"Go on. Finish undressing him. I doubt he'll be much trouble now."

And he wasn't. The combination of pain and hopelessness left him feeling weak, and soon he was barefoot and naked, clothes thrown into a corner of the room. This was meant to humiliate him, and it was working, making him feel embarrassed and vulnerable. He was left with no protection, not that clothing even gave protection from weapons, but now he was left to eyes that glared at him and scrutinized him, sized him up and examined him.

"Hmm," Aggie mused. "I'd actually find you attractive if I didn't hate you so much. Bring him to the chair."

The Doctor's bare feet scrabbled in the dirt as he was dragged forward, arm still painfully tight around his neck. His movements worsened the burning in his leg, but all his instincts screamed at him to escape and flee, to get away from the pain that awaited him. A hard punch in the stomach stopped his movements, body involuntarily trying to double over at the blow that left his captors in full control.

He was forced into the chair, the metal cold under his naked skin. Before he could react to this new environment, the clamps were being fastened. His neck was released just for it to once again be captured, the metal cold and threatening on his throat, making the situation feel even more real. He wanted to be sick. Fear was running rampant through his body, gushing ice through his veins, forcing his hearts to beat painfully fast, the sound bouncing off his skull.

Badadadump. Badadadump. Badadadump.

From his vantage point, the Doctor realized that there were cameras positioned above the doorway, trained on him, their lifeless lenses almost seeming to glare like everyone else in the room.

"You're filming this?" His voice was a hoarse squeak. He looked to Aggie for an answer. She and the rest of the guards had stepped back a few feet, eyes all on him.

"Yep. And it's being broadcasted live. Everyone here will see and hear your punishment."

Oh, that's even better. I'm not even left on my own.

"And what is my punishment?" His voice was only a little stronger than the squeak it had been before.

Aggie laughed as if he had made a joke. "Oh, don't pretend to be stupid! You're going to be left to die in this chair!"

"And how long will that take?"

She just smirked at him. "As long as you and your body can endure. This was made from parts of the spaceship that we arrived here in. We saved the very best for you, Doctor." She said the name distastefully. "Shall we turn it on?"

"No, no! Please!" She pulled some sort of remote out of her pocket, her fingers dancing over the buttons teasingly. "You can't do this to me! Please!"

"Yes I can, Doctor. We all can. I'm fulfilling my name." She pressed one button and the metal halo above his head started slowly rotating. "Where should we start?"

"Stop! You can't do this! Please!" There were terrified tears rolling down his cheeks, and he didn't care that he was crying. He couldn't believe that he was in this situation, that he was stuck.

"Or maybe we should start over here."

The ring above his head stopped spinning, the one to his right beginning to move. It angled close to him as it stopped spinning, a syringe filled with yellow liquid poised above his forearm. He struggled uselessly against his restraints, every nerve in his body crying to be let out.

"I wonder what this does."

He gasped as the machine jabbed the needle into his arm, but it was gone as soon as it had emptied the yellow fluid into his veins. He could feel the invasion in his body, feel the liquid forcing its way through his bloodstream, but other than make him uncomfortable at the sensation, it didn't really seem to do anything.

Aggie frowned at his lack of a reaction, pressed another button. The ring on his left swiveled and a small, sharp blade had suddenly entered his arm at the elbow. He gave a cry at the sudden burst of sharp pain. It shouldn't have hurt that much. Why did it hurt so much?

Ah, damn, it was the yellow stuff. As the blade began to work its way down his arm, still slicing his skin, he realized that the liquid had somehow penetrated his nervous system and made it more sensitive.

As if it wasn't sensitive enough already.

He flinched and tried to jerk his arm away, gritting his teeth against a scream that was threatening to come out. His feet and hands struggled against their restraints, his body trying hopelessly to get out of the chair. A cry parted his lips as the knife continued down his arm, sickened by the sight and the feeling of his skin being torn away by it. When it reached his wrist, the section of flesh fell away, leaving his forearm vulnerable and aching and bleeding. He was gasping from the pain that shot through his nerves, pained and terrified tears stinging at his eyes.

"Why don't we cauterize that?" Aggie suggested, pleasure resonating in her voice. "Don't want you dying from blood loss in the next hour, now do we?"

"N-No," the Doctor groaned, eyes still glued to his arm, shock beginning to resonate through his body. Had he really just had part of his skin removed? "H-Hurts more than it should. That yellow stuff-"

"So, that's what it did," Aggie interrupted, pressing a button. The ring on the left began to spin again, stopping on a blowtorch. "Want me to take pity on you? Poor, poor, Doctor." Her voice dripped with acid.

His back arched, bringing his neck tight against the metal, as the blowtorch turned on, hot flame licking at his bleeding flesh. He couldn't fight to hold in his scream this time. Unbearable heat was crashing against his nerves, body once again fighting wildly to get out of the chair. He knew that he wouldn't have any voice by the end of this.

Oh, god, I'm going to die here. When the realization hit him, he just screamed even louder, in emotional and physical agony. That wasn't how it was supposed to happen. He wasn't supposed to be tortured to death as some helpless victim. That was never how he had imagined it ending.

Then, he realized that it was better that he was going to die. He didn't want to imagine what it would be like if he had any regenerations left. This would keep going and going until he didn't, but this was his last body, so the only thing he had to worry about was this single death.

He was left panting with his head drooping as the blowtorch turned off. His eyes flicked over to his arm, finding the flesh charred and blackened. The scent wrinkled his nose in disgust, and it was hard to believe that it was coming from him.

"There we go." Aggie sounded pleased. "Let's see what else this thing can do."

The Doctor jumped as she pressed a button and something closed over the toes on his right foot. Despite the pain he was in, he couldn't help but look down at it curiously, fringe of dark hair falling in front of his face. His toes were encased in a circular device that looked like it would tighten and crush them. He had the urge to either scream hysterically in terror or vomit all over the floor. Instead, he only reacted by remaining perfectly still.

"Fascinated?" Aggie asked him, finger lingering over a switch.

The Doctor looked at her, and he was surprised that he didn't stutter when he spoke. "Won't you get bored of doing this? Maybe even tired? You're human. You'll need to sleep."

"And then someone will take over for me," she told him blandly, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. And then her finger flipped the switch and there was a series of crunches as the metal tightened around his toes. The Doctor choked out a scream as his toes cracked and broke, fire racing all the way up to his hip. Hot tears dribbled down his face.

"Stop it," he groaned. "Stop this. You have to. Please."

The metal was removed from his toes and the halo above his head began rotating.

"Funny," Aggie commented. "Didn't take you for the begging type."

"I'm usually not," he grunted in response, eyes squeezed shut, trying to endure the pain in his body.

It's just a stupid sensation, he told himself. Just a little sensation. I can block it out if I want to, can't I? No, no, I can't. Not when it's like this.

"Well, I guess I just bring out the best of you."

The Doctor gasped and twisted his head as a needle suddenly entered his neck, trying desperately to get away from it. The clamp around his neck held him mostly in place. And then the burning started, a horrible sensation that started where the needle had penetrated his skin and radiated outwards. A loud scream crawled its way up from his throat, almost as if showing how much it hurt would help somehow. He felt air on his back as the back of the chair slid away, leaving more of his flesh exposed. Just as the burning was intensifying, something stabbed into the top of his spine, and an electric shock jolted through him, causing his body to shake and his hair to stand on end. And it just continued. One shock after another, after another, and they just kept getting worse, as did the burning induced by whatever had been injected through his neck. His muscles strained against the immobile restraints, screams still gushing from his mouth and echoing around the domed ceiling. He couldn't take this anymore!

And then it stopped, and the Doctor was left with a throbbing agony throughout his nerves. He leaned his head back and moaned, realizing that whatever had been stabbed into his back to shock him was still there.

"You getting the hang of it yet, Doctor?" Aggie's voice taunted.

"Sh-Shut up."

"Oh, that wasn't very nice."

Another shock came, so white-hot and powerful that his body jerked of its own accord and he couldn't even scream, white sparks clashing around him. He nearly lost consciousness, feeling as if his whole nervous system had caught on fire. He couldn't find his voice, couldn't move besides tightening his already taut muscles. Then it was gone, and he slumped heavily back in the chair, nerves and veins burning alike.

"How did that feel?"

"Lovely!" the Doctor shouted at her, straightening in the chair, eyes flashing with anger. "Why don't you do it again, bitch?!" He wasn't usually one for swearing, but he felt that it was more than okay to do so in this situation.

Aggie just shook her head and clicked her tongue, pressing another button on her remote. The shock came again, and the Doctor involuntarily arched his back, choking himself against the metal restraint around his neck. This time, he did lose consciousness, but only for a few seconds.

"Come on!" he screamed, once he regained his senses, hurt and angry. If he was going to die, he wanted to go out defiantly. "Is that all you've got?!"

"I think I liked it better when you were begging."

The rings on either side of him rotated simultaneously and whips suddenly came down on his thighs. He jerked and gave a cry, skin twitching at the pain. That had been too close to his manhood for his liking.

Another shock was administered through his spinal cord and the Doctor's whole body tried to arch away from it. He could barely find his voice, and he was instead left gasping. The whips came down again, and the slices they made hurt like hell. One ended up licking at his groin and he was left with agony coursing up through his stomach, unable to find his breath. The electricity continued to violently work its way through his body and he gave a pained cry every time the whips came down, body twisting and turning as best as it could in the restraints.

When it stopped, the Doctor was fighting the nausea rising in his throat, quivering from fright and pain, face wet with tears. Sobs racked his body. He spoke, but he couldn't bring himself to look at his tormentor.

"Just kill me already."

"What's the magic word?" He could hear the smile in Aggie's voice.

"Please!" he sobbed. "Please, just kill me! Finish it!"

"There we go. Back to begging. Lovely."

The shocks started again, this time accompanied by metal clamping around the toes on his left foot and squeezing tight, crushing and shattering. The Doctor screamed and sobbed, his own voice beginning to ache in his throat. And then the same device trapped the fingers on both hands. The electricity stopped, accentuating the sound of his bones snapping.

"Stop it!"

"So hard to think that this is only the beginning!" Aggie called over his screams.

No, no! Someone help me! I can't be stuck here! Oh god, it hurts so much!

He hissed and fought as needles entered his arms and his neck. What sort of atrocious things were being injected into him now?

The Doctor's whole body went limp, causing his panic to increase tenfold. One thing seemed to have paralyzed him from the neck down. Another, he could feel eating away at his veins, burning its way out towards the rest of his body. He found himself sobbing as it seeped out through his skin, leaving trails of blood and burning green liquid. Something else brought the liquid fire back into his veins, and his sobs turned into screams as it raced through his body. One of the other injections seemed to have set his skin tingling, making it as sensitive as ever, making even the slightest flow of air over it hurt.

It was the worst thing he had ever felt when the whips came down again, slashing at his thighs, his stomach, even his back, and all he could move was his head, which he threw back with a scream so loud it felt like it bruised his vocal chords. That didn't matter. This agony he was somehow enduring mattered.

"Please stop! Please! You have to stop!"

Aggie apparently had no intention of listening to his pleas. A blowtorch suddenly came down on his chest, burning his skin to a crisp. The affected area didn't hurt so much, not now that the nerve endings had been burned away. It was the area around it that blazed and ached. He couldn't believe that the whips were still going along with this.

Metal clamped around his hands and they were broken with a sickening crunch that choked off his scream. He forgot how to breathe, to think, to do anything.

"Please," was all he was able to murmur before he lost consciousness.

Continue Reading Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

Angel S. Adames Corraliza: Sensational! As a fan of superheroes, I have to say, you have a real winner of a story so far. I like that you made Allison a Wonder Woman expy, but kept her likable and relate-able in this first chapter. You showed us the Mother while also glancing at the Superhero, which I think is important to...

rajastreet: I enjoyed this piece! I loved the treatment of time and the premise! Some of the wording seemed a little out of place, but easily overlooked for a good a plot.

Melderise: This is just an amazing novel that teaches you how to break the bonds of reality. It shows how the most fascinating story can start from the most regular environment and then leading the reader to the dream destinations...

Ben Gauger: Kudos go to Liz Aguilar, author of To Have And to Hold a fast-paced, gripping, adrenaline rush from start to finish, one of perhaps the finest pieces of writing I've ever read, in particular because of its' telenovela-like feel, May she continually find success as an author. Bravo my dear, bravo!

ernbelle: When I first started this story I was a little unsettled by all of the information that appears in the prologue, and wasn't sure if I would continue. However, I am very glad I did. The plot was very well thought out and really interesting. There were not any page breaks or markers to acknowledge ...

Janaki Sundararaman: The frame of the story has a beautiful structure on which the narration is spun with twists and turns tolook forward with lots of expectations about the coming chapters.There are many characters in the story line,all woven into intricate style to speak the story in its own way.The protagonist is ...

ianwatson: The comedy is original and genuinely funny, I have laughed out loud many times reading this book. But the story and the plot are also really engaging. The opening two or three chapters seem quite character-dense but they all soon come to life and there is no padding, filling or wasted time readin...

M.L. Bull: Hello, Aalia!Your story compelled the emotional pain and struggle of a teenage girl very well.. The imagery was also convincing and well-written, showing the different personalities of your characters and their actions. However, I do think that many of your sentences are too lengthy and could use...

aeratheninja: Interestingly enough, this story touches on different psychological states and was very informing, on top of being a solid story. Although somewhat predictable, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this; I could feel the fear and the frustration of the characters, and was happy when they were happy.Even ...

More Recommendations

mrh: This interesting take on the Harry Potter series fascinated me from line one on. I am in love with this tale and its characters and cannot wait to read the next chapter. I look forward to more soon.When can I expect the next chapter? I am so excited to read it!

Jessie: I wrote a review on fanfiction but I thought it would be fitting to write on on here too :) This story was honestly stunning. I am a budding writer myself and to read this- to FEEL this- reminded me of why I am honoured to have this passion and drive for a craft that is just so raw and beautiful.

Ashley Stryker: So I'm writing this review, keeping in mind that this is a work in progress and it's part of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), so my "deeper" critiques will be saved until it's all finished up.+ Chapter One: A stewardess would not talk to anyone quite like that, particularly a clear minor...

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral stories!

FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"

The Cyneweard

Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral story!

Ro-Ange Olson: "Loved it and couldn't put it down. I really hope there is a sequel. Well written and the plot really moves forward."