Today is Sunday which means it's Doctor Who day here on the blog. Today is the latest installment of my fan fiction script, Lifetime Companion.
It is, also, the last installment and if you've been following the premise of these particular series, well, it may be a bit sad.
Here are the links to the previous episodes.
Here is the disclaimer.
And now let's proceed.
Scene opens: In lunar orbit over the planet Earth, a fleet of spaceships are approaching.
Scene change: Beams of energy striking with explosive force. As our view widens, we see a massive contingent of Cybermen firing blasters as they march down a corridor of a spaceship. They are in turn being fired upon.
Cyberman 1: The humans have been cornered.
Cyberman 2: The humans are to be captured for upgrade.
Cyberman 1: If they resist, delete them.
Our view shifts as we see fleeing in the opposite direction is the Doctor carrying a Cyberman head. Accompanying them are Toby and Ellie Parker along with Jamal White, all in their mid to late 20's, more or less. Jamal is carrying a Cyber-blaster and firing back at their Cybermen pursuers.
Jamal: Ha! Ha! Take that, you Cyber-bastards! And that!
Toby: Doctor, the Cybermen are gaining on us!
Ellie: I don't think that's helping, Toby!
Our team approaches a set of closed doors.
The Doctor: Your wife as a good point, Toby! Here, hold this.
While Jamal continues to blast away at the Cybermen, the Doctor tosses the Cyberhead to Ellie who catches it and shrieks.
Ellie: Auuggh! I'm holding a human head!
She immediately throws it to Toby who catches it.
Toby: It's not human, it's a Cyberman!
The Doctor is scanning the door with his sonic screwdriver which slides open. The team runs in.
Ellie: I don't care. I'm not touching that!
The doors close and the Doctor seals it shut with the sonic.
Jamal: I'm not sure how much charge is left on this gun, Doc!
Toby: Are we safe, Doctor?
The Doctor: Oh absolutely! The amassed armies of Sparta could not get through there.
The doors buckle slightly as Cyberman blaster fire strikes from the outside of the room.
Ellie: I don't believe the amassed armies of Sparta were equipped with Cyber blasters.
The Doctor: Good point! I like her, Toby. We should bring her along more often.
Ellie: Oh get me out of this adventure, Doctor, and I'm done.
Toby: How much time have we got, Doctor?
Toby toss the Cyber head to the Doctor.
The Doctor: I estimate about five minutes.
The doors buckle again with more blaster fire.
The Doctor: Maybe four... ish.
The Doctor begins scanning the Cyberhead with his sonic screwdriver.
Jamal: Do these Cybermen, do they have some kind of weakness?
Toby: Yeah, like Kryptonite!
Jamal: Or the color yellow?
The Doctor stops scanning the Cyber head.
The Doctor: Wait! How is a color a weakness?
Jamal: You know, like Green Lantern. His power ring wouldn't work on things colored yellow.
The Doctor: So if you painted something yellow, Green Lantern couldn't do anything to it?
Jamal: Well, yeah.
The Doctor: You mean, you could beat Green Lantern with a banana.
Jamal: Kind of, I guess.
Toby: Well, an unpeeled banana.
Jamal: Well, naturally.
The Doctor: Well, that's just silly!
Toby: And they kind of wrote that out of the comic books, you know?
The doors buckle again with more blaster fire.
Ellie: Guys! Focus! Less comics books, more not getting killed by Cybermen!
Toby and Jamal: Sorry.
The Doctor resumes scanning the Cyberhead.
Ellie: I'm sure the Cybermen don't have some kind of comic book ready convenient weakness we can...
The Doctor: Gold.
The Doctor: Gold! There was a time when Cyberman functioning could be disrupted by particulate matter from gold.
Toby: Great! Do we have any gold?
Jamal: Hey, Toby, you and Ellie have gold wedding rings...
Ellie: Oh no you're not touching those!
Jamal: But Ellie...
The Doctor: It doesn't matter, Jamal. Those rings are too small to be effective and besides, the Cybermen programmed that particular weakness out of their systems ages ago.
Toby: Then why bring it up?
Ellie: That's a good question.
The doors buckle again with more blaster fire.
The Doctor (to Toby & Ellie): Because you two know computers and you know its virtually impossible to completely eliminate every scrap of code.
Jamal: Hey, I know computers, too!
Toby: Playing Grand Theft Auto 48 hours straight doesn't make you a computer expert, Jamal.
Ellie: Sssh, Toby! Doctor?
The Doctor: I've encountered this with the Cybermen before, the weakness to gold is still buried deep down in the core of their hive mind storage. If I can use this head to hack into the Cybermen's hive network...
Toby: ...you can reactivate their weakness to gold.
The Doctor: No....
The Doctor whirls around, holding out the Cyber head in front of him like a shield.
The Doctor: Something better!
At the moment, one last humongous blaster blast shatters the door and the Cybermen advance.
Cyberman 1: Humans! You will submit to upgrade or be deleted.
The Doctor: I think my friends and I will decline that generous offer!
Cyberman 2: You have no options in this matter. Join us. Be like us. Or be destroyed.
The Doctor: But that's just not fair. I mean, two of my friends recently got married. Ellie, show the nice Cyberman your wedding ring.
The Doctor: Just hold out your hand and show the Cybermen that lovely gold wedding ring that I'm sure Toby paid way too much for.
Jamal: Actually, I got Toby a pretty good deal on...
Toby: Ixnay on the argainbay, amalJay.
Ellie looks very nervous but she does as the Doctor suggests. Cyberman 1 takes a step back.
Cyberman 1: Analysis shows substance is gold. If this is meant as a threat, Doctor, your information is inadequate. Gold is no longer a weakness to Cyber unit functioning.
The Doctor: Well, of course it's not. Toby, show the Cybermen your ring.
Toby holds out his hand displaying his wedding band and Cyberman 2 stands back as well.
Cyberman 2: This is of no consequence. Cybermen no longer have any weakness as it relates to gold.
The Doctor: Again, I know that! You know that! So...question! Why did you both take a step back?
Toby takes a step forward and Cyberman 2 and part of the contingent move back accordingly. Ellie sees this and does the same, causing Cyberman 1 and the rest of the contingent to back up.
Cyberman 1: Our functioning is being over ridden. A protocol has been engaged throughout the Cybernet.
The Doctor (still holding the Cyberhead): No, you don't have a physical weakness to gold. But I have given you and every single Cyberman in orbit above this planet one big stinking case of hypochondria!
Toby and Ellie smile at each other, then take more steps forward causing the Cybermen to retreat further.
Cyberman 1: This is not logical. Cybermen do not know fear.
The Doctor: No, but you are perfect little automatons who will obey a self diagnostic and right now, your programming is screaming at you to better be safe than sorry about this whole weakness to gold thing.
Ellie: Especially when you're in orbit above a planet just full of gold.
The Doctor: Excellent point, Ellie. Seriously, Toby, I like her.
Toby: Hands off, Time Lord. She's spoken for. And to these Cybermen....
Toby and Ellie advance again and the Cybermen retreat again.
Toby: Leave Earth alone!
Jamal's standing in the background with his Cyber-blaster, he advances a few feet forward.
Scene change: The TARDIS hovering in space over Earth and the moon as the Cyber fleet flies off, vanishing into the void.
Jamal (older, VO): And that was the day we helped the Doctor stopped the Cyberman invasion of Earth.
Our view shifts as we see the Doctor, Toby, Ellie and Jamal standing the open doorway of the TARDIS, smiling.
Jamal (older, VO): That was the last time the three of us were together with the Doctor. True to her word, Ellie never again went out on another adventure with the Doctor. It was about a year later that she was pregnant with Katy. I tagged along a couple of times after that...
Scene change: We see Jamal in profile, he is much older now, pushing 80 years old.
Jamal: But I gotta say, I felt a bit like an outsider when it was you with the Doctor. Then I met Brent and, well, you know the rest.
Our view widens and we see Jamal is sitting in a hospital room. In the bed in the middle of the room is the gaunt form of an elderly black man. It's Toby Parker, about 80 years old himself. He's sitting up in bed with his eyes closed.
Jamal sighs and stands up a bit unsteadily. He takes a step or two towards the window. Then...
Toby (eyes still closed): You... stopped talking... Jamal.
Jamal: Sorry, thought you were asleep.
Toby: Nah, just... resting my eyes.
Jamal: Can I get you anything?
Toby: No, I'm fine. You...mentioned Brent. How...is he?
Jamal: He's fine.
Jamal swallows hard and his voice cracks.
Jamal: He doesn't remember me anymore.
Toby: Oh man. I'm so... sorry.
Jamal: S'okay. At least they're keeping him comfortable.
Jamal resumes walking towards the window. Then he stops when Toby speaks.
Toby: He's a comin'.
Toby: He's a comin'.
Jamal: Who, Toby? Who's coming?
Toby: The Doctor.
Jamal: No, he's not. The Doctor only comes once a year on the day after your birthday.
Jamal continues to walk towards the window and pulls apart two of the window blind slats with his fingers.
Jamal: And we're 5 months away from your next...
Jamal stops and his eyes widen. Our view shifts and we see what Jamal sees outside through the window: in the darkness of night in the parking lot below, by a streetlight is the TARDIS.
Jamal (whispers): No.
Jamal turns and as quickly as his stiff limbs will allow, he crosses the room.
Jamal moves to Toby's bedside and Toby takes Jamal's hand.
Toby: You are...my best friend.
Jamal: You're mine, too.
Toby: And I know...you're feeling very alone right now.
Jamal: Toby, I...
Toby: No, listen. My kids, my grandkids, they love you and will watch over you. You're family to them.
Jamal: I love them too but...
Toby: Jamal, I feel it. I feel it... in my bones. It's time... to go.
Jamal: Please stop talking like this.
Toby: Jamal, it's time...for us... to say goodbye.
Jamal with tears running down his face leans forwards and embraces Toby. Toby weakly hugs him back.
Jamal (whispering): You saved my life. Some many times. So many ways. What am I going to do without you?
The two men hold each other, Jamal's choking back sobs and tears are running down Toby's cheeks as well. Finally, reluctantly Jamal lets go of Toby and takes a step back.
Toby: Jamal, you've been... a friend to me. A brother. And...I love you for that.
Jamal: I love you, too.
Toby: Now... I believe I have a visitor.
Jamal nods and walks to the door. Before he opens it, he looks to Toby one more time. Toby nods his head and gives him a smile. Jamal manages a smile in return before silently leaving the room. Then Toby closes his eyes and takes a deep breath. When he opens his eyes, the Doctor is standing in the room. He looks particularly well groomed, his grey hair less unruly, his black jacket sleek and dark, his white dress shirt well pressed and buttoned to the neck.
The Doctor: Toby.
Toby: Doctor. You're...early.
The Doctor: I don't like being too predictable.
Toby: I'm dying.
The Doctor says nothing.
The Doctor swallows hard.
The Doctor: Yes. Yes, you are.
Toby: I have cancer. Very quick, very aggressive. Within 2 weeks.... of diagnosis, I'm... about to die. After 70 years, that two week... death notice the doctors... gave my mom... when I was a child...has finally... caught up with me.
The Doctor bites his lower lip as he fails to meet Toby's gaze.
Toby: Doctor...what happened?
The Doctor: The chronovirus has reached the end of it's life cycle. So the temporal distortion that shifted your cancerous cells out of sync with your body...
Toby: No longer exists.
The Doctor: No, it doesn't.
Toby: But your work... isn't done.
The Doctor shakes his head "no".
The Doctor: Just as the chronovirus is too weak to maintain the temporal distortion that's kept you alive for 70 years, your body is too weak for me to maintain the lock that's kept the chronovirus inside you all this time.
Toby: Once it's...free of me, it could....recover and...
The Doctor: Cause more death, yes.
Toby: But you're here... to catch it.
The Doctor retrieves the chronovirus capture device we saw in Episodes 1, 5 and 6.
The Doctor: In it's weakened state, I don't foresee a problem.
Toby: But you did...foresee this.
The Doctor says nothing.
Toby: Doctor, I'm an old man... who's about to die. Please, now, no more lies.
The Doctor stands silent for a moment more. Then...
The Doctor: Yes, I did.
Toby: I see.
The Doctor: I've known. I have always known, even from that first day I met you when you were 8 years old, I knew... I would have to be here... at the end.
Toby: I understand.
The Doctor paces a bit before laying the collector device on a table then turning towards Toby.
The Doctor: You know, from your perspective, I came to see you every year but for me, yes, you figured out, I was seeing you one day after another. Do you know why?
Toby: You never told me. And I...never figured it out... on my own.
The Doctor: I thought that if I rushed through your life, fast forward through it, you would seem... less real to me. That this moment wouldn't hurt so much.
The Doctor turns away from Toby for a moment.
The Doctor: I've told you before, I am a very old and very foolish man. I make these daft choices to keep my hearts from breaking and...
The Doctor turns back towards Toby.
The Doctor: And it doesn't work. You were a good boy who grew up into a good man and I'm proud to have known you. I am proud... you were my companion.
Toby reaches up with a hand and the Doctor steps up to take it. Then the two pull each other into a hug. After a moment, the Doctor pulls back.
Toby: Doctor, it was...an honor and a privilege... to serve with you... in the TARDIS.
The Doctor: Likewise.
The Doctor: So...
The Doctor retrieves the collector from the table. He stands there silently for a moment.
Toby: Doctor...it's time.
The Doctor shakes his head "no".
The Doctor: But...soon.
Toby closes his eyes and smiles. Our view shifts from the hospital room to a series of images, moving in increasing speed back along Toby's timeline. Images of his grandchildren at parties and graduations, his own children at their weddings and graduations, family get togethers, his wife Ellie, his friend Jamal, his mother Claire, bits and pieces of his time with the Doctor with Daleks, Cybermen, Weeping Angels, Odin and the Mire, Count Nostromos from Episode Three, the Martian robot from Episode Two and then...
A sunny day in a city park as the Doctor, in his black suit but a dark purple t shirt, runs towards a crowd of people. The Doctor pushes through the crowd where he sees Claire Parker on her knees weeping over the prostrate body of her young son Toby, surrounded by a green glow.
Claire: Toby! No!
The Doctor crouches to the woman’s side as he anxiously scans the boy with his sonic screwdriver.
Claire: Help him! Help my baby!
The Doctor: I'll do what I can!
Claire: My baby! He just turned 8!
The Doctor (scanning): I'm...
The Doctor stops scanning, looks sad.
The Doctor: I…I’m sorry…there’s…
At that moment, the glow abates with Toby unaged at all.
Claire: What….what happened? Is he…?
The Doctor looks puzzled as he leans forward and puts his hand to Toby’s cheek.
The Doctor: Hey…
Our focus shifts to Toby’s face, his eyes closed. Then they slowly open and he mumbles something. From his view, he sees the Doctor leaning over him, out of focus. Except the Doctor is wearing his white shirt buttoned at the collar.
The Doctor (echo): Toby. It’s time.
Back to Toby looking bleary eyed.
Toby (mumbling): It’s time.
Scene change: very old Toby in his hospital bed.
Toby (mumbling): It's time.
Meanwhile, we see the Doctor as a green glow enters the device in his hands. Then the glow vanishes. The Doctor signs, presses a button on the device which makes a definitive click sound, then he puts the device in his inside jacket pocket. Then he hears a voice.
Toby (weakly): Doctor...
The Doctor approaches Toby's bed side and takes his hand.
The Doctor: Toby...
Toby: I see...my mother. She's...smiling at me. It's going... to be OK.
A single tear rolls down the Doctor's cheek.
Toby: Thank you....Doctor. Thank you... for my life.
With a smile of contentment on his face, Toby closes his eyes for the last time.
And we fade to black.
Then the black is broken up by stars. We see a night sky and as our view shifts downward we see the bright lights of
Our view moves in closer and we see the TARDIS on a street corner. The Doctor exits the TARDIS and closes the door behind him. He pauses for a moment, then makes his way down a city street alive with night clubs and people out having a good time. Out of one of those clubs comes a curly haired Scotsman with a punk rock t-shirt. It's Craig from the rock band we met at the start of Episode One.
Craig: Doctor! There you are! Our break's almost over! We go on in two minutes! Hey, you changed your shirt!
The Doctor: I did? Oh, I did.
Craig: Look, you give any more thought about joinin' the band? As a permanent gig, you know, like we're just talking about a few minutes ago?
The Doctor: A few minutes ago... or a lifetime.
The Doctor puts on his sunglasses.
Craig: What? Doctor, you're not making sense.
The Doctor walks off.
The Doctor walks up past throngs of people to the stage, takes up his guitar and begins noodling with it. The crowd who had been chattering noisily waiting for the show to begin starts to quiet down as the random noises from the Doctor's guitar turn into a song.
It is a particularly soulful rendition of George Harrison's While My Guitar Gently Weeps. As the formerly boisterous crowd finds themselves in silent awe of this emotional performance, our view shifts past the Doctor out the back of the stage to the alleyway and then up into the sky over Edinburgh and up to the edge of atmosphere, then back down again towards London and to a hospital.
We hear the sound of a baby's cry.
Scene change: we see a newborn baby with brown skin who is settling into the warm comfort of a blanket. We see arms carry the baby to the brown arms of his mother.
Nurse: Congratulations, Mrs. Parker. It's a boy.
Our view shifts up and it's a very young Claire Parker looking down at her new baby boy with a bright smile of pure joy.
Claire: Hello, Toby Parker. Hello.
A new post is coming up on the blog tomorrow and Doctor Who related posts will be here next Saturday and Sunday.
Remember to be good to one another.