Sunday, May 15, 2016

Doctor Who: Lifetime Companion - Episode Three

Hi there! Dave-El here and welcome to I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You, the blog that puts the "ctor" in "doctor". 

This is Sunday which is Doctor Who Day here on the ol' blog thing. We're heading into Week Three of my new fan fiction. If you have missed the triumph or the tragedy of these tales of wonder, click here and here.   

Before we get into this week's episode, a little bit about last week's installment which featured a Martian planetary rover built like a spider named Ziggy. Yes, this is a blatant shout out to David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders of Mars. 

OK, here is the disclaimer.

And now we are off! 

Lifetime Companion
by David Long
Episode Three


Scene opens: a close up of a sword blade, silver and shiny. Our view moves out and we see it’s a sword being brandished by the Doctor.

The Doctor: Keep your sword balanced, Toby! And stop pivoting to your right!

Our view widens further and we see Toby Parker also armed with a sword. Toby’s a bit older than we saw him last episode.

Toby: I just turned 16 yesterday! I haven’t had a lot of practice with swords.

Our view widens further and we see a third person, a bearded gentleman in colorful garb to suggest a European nobleman of the Middle Ages. He too has a sword. They are in a stone line chamber lit with torches.

Sir Patrick: Verily, ebon hued youth…

Toby (aside to Doctor): Doctor! He’s doing it again!

Sir Patrick: Your ingenuity with a sword is thus far most admirable.

The Doctor: Sir Patrick, we’re going to need all the ingenuity we can muster…

Our view turns and we’re facing in the same direction of our three heroes. And what we’re facing is a mass of shambling, groaning, grungily garbed peasants who look a lot like zombies.

The Doctor: …against a zombie horde!

Toby: OK, just to sum up: we’re in the middle ages fighting a bunch of zombies who want our…

Zombies (between grunts and groans): Spleens! Spleens! Spleens!

Toby: OK, they want our spleens!

The zombie horde surges forward as the three present swords.

Sir Patrick: Aim for their heads!

Toby thrusts a sword forward which impales itself through a zombie’s forehead. The zombie continues to flail there.

Zombie: Spleens!

The Doctor: Aim for their necks!

The Doctor’s sword slashes down and the zombie falls.

Sir Patrick leaps directly towards the zombies, his sword flashing.

Sir Patrick: A-HA! Take that, foul demons from hell!

The Doctor: Toby! Are you all right?

Toby: Well, I guess. I think so. I mean…

Suddenly Toby whirls around and with a flick of his sword, he takes down a zombie.

Toby: Oh hell yeah!

The Doctor: Toby, what have I told you about the cursing?

The Doctor and Toby take out a few more zombies while Sir Patrick jumps about, cackling like a lunatic as he decimates the zombie horde.

The Doctor: Sir Patrick! SIR PATRICK!

Sir Patrick stops still, looks a bit dazed.

Sir Patrick: What?

The Doctor: We’ve run out of zombies.

Our view expands to see that it is just the Doctor, Toby and Sir Patrick standing among the rubble of broken zombie bodies.

Sir Patrick: Oh? Oh. I see. Well, bugger!

Nostromo (VO, low and sinister): Oh do not fret! The graveyards are still quite full!

The Doctor, Toby and Sir Patrick quickly turn towards the sound of the voice.  There stands a tall thin figure in black flowing robes. His head is that of an old man with thin, swepted back white hair. 

Sir Patrick: Count Nostromo! You foul bastard of Lucifer’s loins! What black magic is this?

Nostromo: The magic that will give me unlimited  power over this kingdom and the world beyond!

The Doctor: Hardly magic and definitely not unlimited!

The Doctor casts away his sword and withdraws his sonic screwdriver.

Nostromo: Ha! A most peculiar wand for a warlock, Doctor!

The Doctor: A sonic screwdriver! And I’ve used it to render inert the chemical compound you used to animate corpses.

Nostromo: No!

The Doctor: There’s no more zombie army for you to command!

Toby: You are done for, Nostro-NO!

Toby laughs and looks at the Doctor who just shakes his head, “no”.

Sir Patrick: Methinks there’s a dark cell awaiting you in the King’s tower!

Nostromo: NO! Nostromo is no prisoner!

With a flourish, Nostromo casts his hands outward. A flash of light, a loud bang and smoke fills the chamber.

Nostromo (hidden by the smoke): If not today, then it shall be another! But I will rule! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

The Doctor, Toby and Sir Patrick are coughing as they flail through the smoke.

Sir Patrick: Curses! I can’t see!

Toby: Doctor? Where….?

We hear the trilling of the sonic screwdriver and its glow pierces the smoke.

The Doctor: This way! Up these stairs!

Sir Patrick: His private chambers where he practices his devilish arts!

The three scramble out of the smoke and up the stairs. Through a stone arch they run where we see a room lit with torches littered with bottles and tubing, all representing the nascent science of the Middle Ages coupled with mysticism. Fires burn and cauldrons bubble.

Nostromo: Halt, you fools! You’re in my domain now!

Sir Patrick: I fear you not, madman! No matter where I and my blade shall find thee!

The Doctor: Careful, Sir Patrick!

Sir Patrick: Bah! We have the scoundrel cornerned!

The Doctor: These chemicals….Nostromo, the reactions you are working with here are very volatile! It’s not safe…

Nostromo: Indeed not, dear Doctor, not for you or your shadow skinned squire…

Toby: So everybody’s doing that here.

The Doctor: No, I mean for you! Any wrong move could be catastrophic!

Nostromo: How dare you, Doctor! Here, where my power is absolute!

Nostromo dramatically flourishes his arms about when his robes catch some of the arcane equipment.

The Doctor: OUT! NOW!

As the Doctor instantly turns to push Toby, Sir Patrick and himself out the doorway, glass and metal hits the stone floor and shatters. Instantly there is a roar and blinding light.


Nostromo is consumed by a plume of fire. The Doctor moves forward but Toby puts his hand on the Doctor's left shoulder and Sir Patrick grasps the Doctor's right hand to pull him back. 

Toby: No, Doctor! It's too late! 

The Doctor: Nostromo!

We see a thin and gnarled finger jab out of the fire and point accusedly at the Doctor.

Nostromo: Doctor! You will pay for this! I will have my revenge! If not in this life then the….

Very abruptly the fire vanishes leaving a pile of smoldering ash and a very confused Sir Patrick and Toby and a very worried looking Doctor.

Scene change: present day London, exterior of Coal Hill School. The sound EFX (VWORP! VWORP!) of the TARDIS materializing into view.  The Doctor and Toby exit the TARDIS. 

The Doctor: Ah! There you go, Toby. Just in time for class with three minutes to spare. 

Toby adjusts his back pack. 

Toby: Could've used a little more cushion than that, Doctor. My history exam is up first thing and on the other side of the school. 

The Doctor: Everyone's a critic. 

The Doctor follows as Toby walks quickly into the main entrance.

Toby: Still, if I cut through the main hall, I just might...uh oh! 

Blocking the hall is a gusher of water where a water fountain used to be. Two men in coveralls are trying to stop gusher and contain the flooding. Surrounded by curious students, the Headmaster stands there with her hands on her hips and a stern expression on her face. 

Headmaster: This simply won't do! It just won't! 

We can see one of the workmen under the brim of his cap is an older black man. 

Workman: We're doing what we can, ma'am! 

Headmaster: What you can do is not sufficient! This is a major disruption of the school! It just won't do! 

Workman: Sorry ma'am. 

Headmaster: It simply won't do! 

Toby tries to push on through but the Headmaster stops him. 

Headmaster: You can't go this way, Mr. Parker. 

Toby: But...but my history exam...

Headmaster: This way is not safe! 

Toby: But....

The glare from the Headmaster's eyes make it plain Toby will not win this argument. He looks up at the Doctor who is grinning. 

Toby (snappish): Oh shut up! 

Anxiously, Toby looks down another hall way.  

Toby: Maybe if I cut past the science classes.  

Toby hurries off. 

Headmaster: And no running, Mr. Parker. 

For a few feet, Toby holds himself to a brisk walk then he starts to run.  Bounding around a corner, Toby runs into a young woman and there's an explosion of paper sheets everywhere.

Back to the main hall entrance, the Headmaster looks at the Doctor. 

Headmaster: Who are you? 

The Doctor: Me? Oh, I'm...

Headmaster: Weren't you the caretaker? 

The Doctor: Ex-caretaker. I was bounced by the National Association of Caretakers. They took my brush. Oh, look! Time for me to go. 

Before the Headmaster can pursue this further, the Doctor makes a quick exit. The other workman looks up at the departing Doctor. Under the shadow of his cap brim, we can't make out any features of his face.  

Scene change: Back to the hallway where Toby ran into the young woman. Her name is Ellie and she has reddish brown hair. And right now she's not happy.  And Toby's efforts to help her gather her papers isn't helping.  

Ellie: What the....? 

Toby: Uh oh! 

Ellie: You idiot! 

Toby: Sorry, I...

Ellie: Was running...

Toby: Yes and...

Ellie: Like an idiot! 

Toby: I'm sorry! Here...

Ellie: You're getting the papers wrinkled! 

Toby: Sorry. 

Ellie: And out of order! 

Toby: Sor--

Ellie: Oh, never mind! 

Ellie snatches the papers from Toby's hands, scoops up the rest and hurries away from Toby into an empty classroom. Except she leaves behind one sheet of paper. 

Toby: Er, excuse me, uh, you...

Toby reaches to pick up the sheet of paper. It's a cover sheet. 

The Planet Mars and the Future of Humankind
by Ellie Carmichael

Toby (whispers): Mars! 

Toby follows Ellie into the class room. 

Scene change: Moving back outside, the Doctor sees a water fountain that is working just find. He takes a sip of water. As he straighten up from the fountain, a sudden expression of worry crosses his face. 

The Doctor: Uh oh? 

The Doctor places a hand over one part of his chest. 

The Doctor: Uh oh. 

The Doctor places his hand over another part of his chest. 

The Doctor: Most definitely uh oh!

The Doctor hurries back into the school. 

The Doctor: Toby!  

Scene change: in the empty class room/science lab where Ellie has dumped her papers and is frantically shoving them into order. Toby tentatively approaches. 

Toby: Er, Ellie? 

Ellie turns towards Toby. 

Ellie: You! How do you...? 

Toby cautiously hands her the cover sheet. 

Toby: Really...sorry...

Surprisingly gentle, Ellie retrieves the cover sheet from Toby's hand. 

Ellie: Well... I really should've had this report in a binder. Or paper clipped.

Toby: Or stapled. 

Ellie glares at Toby. 

Toby: OK, I'm thinking I'm not being very helpful right now.  

Ellie actually laughs slightly. 

Ellie: It's.... it's OK. I was just so excited to get this report done and...

Toby: On Mars. Er, your report. That you did. On Mars. Your report on Mars. 

Ellie (slight smile): Yes, that's the one. 

Ellie has the report gathered up. 

Ellie: So, what's your name? Or should I just call you "you idiot"? 

Toby: Oh, that's fine. I mean, not fine. You know..."idiot", it works I guess is....Toby. My name is Toby. Parker! Toby Parker but just...Toby is...fine. 

Ellie shakes her head and smiles. She's walking towards the door of the classroom.  

Ellie: Maybe I'll see around, Toby. Just a word of advice. 

Toby: Yeah? 

Ellie: Watch where you're going. 

At the moment, the door of the classroom bursts open, knocking Ellie back on the floor as her report explodes again in a cascade of paper. Hurrying through the doorway is the Doctor, clutching a hand to his chest.  

The Doctor: Toby!!

Toby: Doctor?! Ellie!! 

Ellie: What the...? 

The Doctor: Ellie??

Toby rushes to her side.

Toby: On the floor! Ellie?

The Doctor: On the fl...? Oh! Sorry! Didn't.....Ungh!  

Ellie (sitting up): Who...? 

Toby: Doctor?! 

The Doctor: I'm not...interrupting I?

Toby: Ellie, are you OK? 

Ellie: Fine, I think. 

The Doctor: I'd hate to be...interrupting anything...

Toby: You're not...

Ellie: Who is this? 

The Doctor: I mean, I was young...once...centuries ago...

Toby: Doctor....

Ellie: Doctor? Doctor who? 

Toby: Doctor, what's wrong? 

The Doctor: Who, me? Ah, just a small case of dying. 

Toby: Dying? 

The Doctor staggers across the floor towards some cabinets. 

The Doctor: Just a small case, Toby. Unless I don't get both of my hearts restarted. 

Toby: Doctor, what happened? 

Ellie: Wait! Did he say BOTH hearts? 

The Doctor: I've been poisoned. 

Toby: Poisoned? 

Ellie: What? 

The Doctor rummages through the cabinet's science lab supplies. 

Toby: What? How? 

The Doctor: I'm hoping there's something...up here I can...

The Doctor stops and gently withdraws a bottle. 

The Doctor (whispers): Something I can use.  

Ellie: Toby, what's going on? Who is...? 

Toby: Later, Ellie. Doctor? 

Our view shifts to the small bottle with a note attached. 

Doctor, drink this. 

The Doctor: Well, that's insanely specific.  

The Doctor pops the stopper and downs the contents. Almost immediately, the Doctor relaxes. Maybe too relaxed as Toby rushes to his side to keep him from falling down.   

Toby: Doctor! 

The Doctor: S'all right, Toby. Gonna be all right. Just need a li'l sit down.  

Toby guides the Doctor to a chair. 

Toby: There, just sit quietly for a moment and...

The Doctor: You're a good friend, Toby, you know that. 

Toby: OK, Doctor...

The Doctor: I really look forward to seeing you every day...

Toby: What?

The Doctor: Your mother's right, you're growing up too fast.

Toby: Doctor, you visit me once a year. For nine years now. 

The Doctor: That's what I said, I look forward to seeing you every year. 

Ellie: Is he...drunk? 

The Doctor: Hey, I'm not as think as you drunk I am!

Toby: It's the antidote he took. 

The Doctor: Good stuff, too! My compliments to the doctor who made it! 

Ellie: Toby, part of me is really curious about who this man is and part of me is thinking I'm better off not knowing. 

Toby: Yeah, it's kinda complicated and I'm not sure how much I tell because...

The Doctor: I'm a Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey!

Toby:'s supposed to be a secret.  

The Doctor leans towards Toby. 

The Doctor (in a very, very loud whisper): Your girlfriend is very pretty! 

Toby: No, she's not. 

Ellie: I'm what? 

Toby: I mean, pretty, of course I mean, yes, she's pretty, I guess, I mean, of course she is if I were to notice something like that which I didn't, I mean, yes, I noticed she was pretty but I'm not saying I think she's pretty but objectively well, yeah, duh but that's really not my place to say, I just wanted to make clear that she's my girlfriend...NOT my girlfriend, I meant to say NOT my girlfriend. So yes she's pretty, you could say, I'm not saying that, I'm...

Ellie: Slick save there, buster. Better stop while you're behind. 

Toby: Er, yeah, sorry. 

The Doctor laughs. 

Toby: Oh shut up! 

Ellie has gathered her papers once more. 

Ellie: OK, I'm way behind schedule so as much as this strangeness is kind of entertaining, I need to go. 

Toby looks a bit disappointed. 

Toby: Oh. OK. 

Ellie: But Toby, I think you have a very interesting story to tell and I would like to hear it... some time. 

Toby: Yeah, sometime. 

Ellie: Bye, Toby. 

Toby: Bye, Ellie. 

Ellie very cautiously exits out the door.   

The Doctor slaps his hands on his knees. 

The Doctor: Well, I feel much better.  

The Doctor stands up. 

Toby: Doctor! Are you all right now? 

The Doctor: Never better.

Toby: So what happened? 

The Doctor: As I said, poisoned. 

Toby: Poisoned? But how? 

The Doctor stretches out the palm of his right hand. 

The Doctor: A little pin prick right in the center of my palm. Got there when Sir Patrick grasped my hand when Count Nostromo went up in flames. 

Toby: Wait! Sir Patrick tried to kill you? 

The Doctor: Oh, no, no. More likely a bit of sabotage to Sir Patrick's ring on the part of the nefarious Count. The poison was definitely Nostromo's handiwork. It remains inert in the human body until it comes in contact with a hydrogen oxygen compound mixture. 

Toby: Water! 

The Doctor: Exactly! You do know your science. 

Toby: Well, it's history that's going to do me in. I missed the test. 

The Doctor: Oh, I'm sorry, Toby. 

Toby: I know you've told me about the Laws of Time and stuff but...

The Doctor: No, Toby. 

Toby: C'mon, take me back in the TARDIS so I can get to the history test on time! 

The Doctor: I can't do that! I can't use the TARDIS like...

Suddenly appearing the doorway is...Toby Parker? 

Toby 2: Hi! 

Toby and the Doctor: What? 

Toby 2: Look, can't talk long...

Toby: Wait, is that me?

The Doctor: What are doing over there? 

Toby 2: Don't worry about the history test. It's taken care of.  

Toby: Wait! 

Toby 2: Sorry! Must dash! 

Toby 2 disappears and Toby starts to follow. The Doctor puts a hand on Toby's shoulder to stop. 

The Doctor: No, Toby. Best let this be. 

Toby: But ...but that was me. Me! And he said the history test was...

Toby stops as a broad grin crosses his face. 

Toby: That has to mean that...

Still smiling, Toby turns to face the Doctor's stern expression.  
The Doctor: Oh shut up!   

Scene change: the TARDIS interior. The Doctor is at the console as he examines the antidote bottle with the Doctor, drink this note attached.  

The Doctor: Curiouser and curiouser, said Alice. 

The Doctor sets the bottle down and turns his attention to a monitor screen. 

The Doctor: Chronovirus degradation.  

Our view shifts to the monitor screen. Along the top part of the screen is a row of photos, a picture of Toby Parker for every year from age 8 to age 16. The bottom half of the screen is a graph with a red jagged line that moves downward as it moves from left to right. 

The Doctor: Nothing I can do. 

The Doctor turns off the monitor. Our view widens to the Doctor standing in the vast interior of the TARDIS console room, all alone.  

Scene change: the tree line street of Toby Parker's neighborhood. Toby's walking down a sidewalk when his friend Jamal crosses the street to join him. Like Toby, Jamal is a bit older than last time we saw him in Episode Two. 

Jamal: Hey, Toby! 

Toby: Jamal! Hey, how you doing? 

Jamal: Trying to stay out of trouble. 

Toby: Failing miserably? 

Jamal: Ha! Got that right! Dad said if I don't get my grades up, he and mom are sending me to military school. 

Toby: I think all parents make that threat. 

Jamal: I think my might really mean it! 

Toby: You in the army? That'll be the day. 

Toby: So how 'bout you, Toby? How's your day been? 

Flashback to Toby fighting zombies with the Doctor. 

Back to the present. 

Toby: You know, just the same old same old. 

Toby pauses. 

Toby: Well, there was this one thing...

Jamal: Yeah? 

Toby: You see, I met this girl...


Next time...

It would be a suicide mission to save Jamal from certain death. But that's what Toby agrees to do.  The Doctor would object.... if he were around, that is...

That's next week in Episode Four of...

Lifetime Companion

A new blog post is coming up tomorrow. Until next time, remember to be good to one another.   

Action Comics#1000

Shhhhhh! I'm reading Superman in Action Comics#1000!   And it.... is.... AWESOME!!!