Mike Weston looked
over the weird mushroom shaped console, in the spacious control room of the TARDIS, at his travelling companions the Doctor
and Chameleona. “Why do we always have to have a holiday?” He asked them. “We have a time machine, we could meet
some famous people, maybe save a few people from being intimidated.” He
couldn’t believe that all they ever wanted to do was laze about doing nothing when there was so much more they could
“Mike.” The Doctor looked at his brash new friend. “When
you’ve travelled with me for a bit longer you’ll come to realise that we don’t go looking for trouble. Trouble always comes looking for us.”
He finished sorting through his large collection of hats, handing the ones he didn’t want to Alice. Epsilon Delta Gemini is no mere holiday planet, it has the universes largest collection of roller coasters.”
sensed that a really great holiday was at risk so she acted quickly, dropped the hats into the large tea chest in which they
lived before putting her hand on Mike’s arm. “Sometimes we need to
unwind after some of the things we’ve been through recently.”
only too well. “I’m trying to forget about the stressful week we
spent making sandcastles or the whole month we spent looking for Molly who turned out to have been in the TARDIS the whole
time. Can’t we do something a little more exciting than bugger all?”
The Doctor nodded. “I’ll let you pick our next destination Mike.” The Doctor promised. For now though, lets just unwind a little
and maybe get rid of a little stress?”
“Oh very well.” Mike replied. “I’ll go and
put my cheerful head on.”
“You can change
your head?” Alice asked. “I’ve always wanted to try that.”
She concentrated and her face blurred and reformed into that of an attractive brunette.
was weird.” Mike said to the Doctor before heading to his room to get changed.
“Yes.” The Doctor agreed. “I never knew
how disconcerting regeneration was to you all until now. Now what do you think,
the red jacket or the gold one?”
“Gold!” Alice squeaked, as her bright pink and
yellow striped pyjamas were transformed into a low cut red velvet dress. She
returned her attention to the hats but the Doctor didn’t seem interested in any of them.
“Are you sure about this one?” She held up a large bright
red hat with a huge floppy brim. “It’s a very nice one.”
“I think not
Alice, but thanks for the suggestion. Maybe
today I’ll forgo any headwear. I’ve managed before, I’m sure
one day at a fun fair will be survivable.”
carefully placed the hat back on top of all the others. “Well then, what
do you think? Heels or flats?”
“Flats I think
Alice. You won’t be able to
grow wheels once we’ve landed. You have to think about comfort and practicality.
A good shoe gives you character, poise, respect.” He rolled his eyes when Alice’s red heels turned into
huge platform boots with lots of ribbons and glitter on them. “Those make
you look like a Spice Girl fan.”
“Thanks.” Alice felt entirely happy with her footwear
now that the Doctor had given his approval.
Mike returned to
the console room, sporting a pair of dark blue denim jeans and a simple burgundy t-shirt.
“Wow, I feel underdressed. Thankfully.” He pulled on one of the Doctors hats before desciding he didn’t want to be seen in public with it. “Maybe I’m not a hat person.”
“I liked it.” Alice said trying to be helpful. “Maybe you need a long scarf to go with it though.”
still got a couple somewhere.” The Doctor added.
“I think I’ll
be fine like this all the same.” Mike decided. “Now shall we go out there before Alice’s insides
burst into flames with excitement?”
on the run from his own people. He was their King and they were going to kill
him just like all the other Kings of Erehdlocoot. “Gotta find somewhere
to hide.” He spotted a strange blue box appear from out of nowhere. “Now that’s flash.” He
said to himself. Three people emerged from the little box, a weird tall guy with
pale skin, dressed in something a colour blind eccentric would reject, a slender short woman, also with pale skin, in a dress
that seemed to be glued to her figure and a regular looking guy with a deep brown hue to his features, who looked exactly
like he did. “That’s it!”
Q’uartz decided upon a plan. “They’ll never suspect
Mike felt and hand
over his mouth before he was dragged backwards into a shady alcove and something hit him over the head. He felt someone starting to unbutton his jeans before the darkness of unconsciousness enveloped his thoughts.
stray far Mike.” The Doctor cautioned his friend. “We don’t want to spend a month here looking for you.”
“Ha ha.” Q’uartz laughed.
“Are you feeling
ok?” Alice asked. “Your voice seems different somehow.”
“I think I’m
getting a cold.” Q’uartz lied.
“I hope I don’t give it to you two.”
“I hate viruses.” Alice frowned. “My head spins around and my body tends to melt at awkward moments.
Then there was the time where I tried to tell everyone I had ever met about how useful plastic bicycle reflectors were. And the least said about the whole belly dancing thing the better.”
catch human diseases.” The Doctor said to his worried companion. “You’re quite immune. I on the other hand have
a superior immune system and my people discovered a cure for the common cold many years ago.
We just lost it, well you know how it is when your whole society is based on beurocracy.”
this only too well.
Mike snapped his
eyes open. His head was hurting where something had struck it. He touched the place where it hurt and was not surprised to find a nasty lump forming there. How long had he been unconscious? The light seemed to be more
or less in the same place, the shadows of the trees had hardly moved. He stood
up and felt a weird sloshing sensation, as his brain seemed to be suddenly made entirely of water. He hoped he didn’t have any internal bleeding.
took hold of Mike’s hand. “Lets go on that one, it looks great.”
at the woman and wondered what sort of relationship the guy he was impersonating had with her.
“Ok, just the one though. I think I’ll be sick if I go on
it more than once.”
wait here.” The Doctor promised.
“I can take a picture of the two of you when the ride’s over.”
Mike slouched over
towards a security desk. There were already a few people there and he stood in
line to wait his turn.
“Your majesty!” Some one called out and took hold of his arm.
“You must return to your people at once. It’s almost time
for the ceremony.”
Mike pulled his
arm away from the seriously confused guy. “Listen mate I’ve just
been mugged by someone and I’m not no King dude ok? I’m Mike Weston
ok. I’m here with my friends Alice and the Doctor.”
is playing a trick on me.”
“Look at this
bump.” Mike put the weird man’s hand on his head. “Tell me that’s not the size of Mount Everest.”
“Well it would
explain your confusion Majesty. A thousand apologies for not being there to take
want to get beaten up in my place. What’s up with you?”
please. Anyone from your staff would gladly accept death to save your life.”
“Is that right?” Mike asked. “You sure are one crazy
guy. I don’t even know your name.”
“S’orc.” The servent replied. “Now come
along your Majesty, your people are growing fearful of your absence. Your Queen
has done much to allay their fears but the people need their pomp and ceremony to reassure them that all is well with their
King. Your ship of state is waiting in orbit to take you home. The shuttles are this way.”
grinned from ear to ear as she helped Mike out of his seat. “That was great
wasn’t it? The way we went around and around and around.” She looked a little closer at her second best friend in the whole Universe.
“Are you ok?” She asked him.
“You look a little peaky.”
feel like they’ve been in a blender.” Q’uartz finally managed
to stand up without his insides heaving.
the best part.” Alice agreed
before helping Mike walk over to where the Doctor was waiting for them.
“Did you enjoy
yourselves?” The Doctor asked his two companions.
“I feel ill.” Q’uartz muttered. “I think
I’m going to do something splattery.”
The Doctor patted
Mike on the shoulder. “Hold it in Mike.
What about you Alice? Is it as good as it looks?”
“Better.” Alice remarked loudly. “My internal gyroscope nearly failed three times, it was that fantastically superbly brilliant.”
The Doctor nodded
at his friend’s enthusiasm. “Maybe I should look at that later, you
shouldn’t let it go unchecked.”
“No need to
wait.” Alice fished down the
front of her dress to find the access hatch and removed her gyroscope. She handed
it to the Doctor before getting dizzy and falling over into Mike.
“Now you can
see why I said later.” The Doctor lectured Alice. “Now we’ll have to take you back to the TARDIS to repair you.”
“I feel fine.” Alice lied. “But why is everything spinning?”
the android woman up. “I’ve got her Doctor. Can’t you just pop it back in here and sort everything out later?”
“Look at all
the twirly, turny clouds.” Alice
pointed up at the pea green clouds in the nice bright happy yellow sky. “Look
at the blue sun, it’s like a giant hoola hoop!”
Mike was stunned
when he saw the inside of the ship. It was magnificently decorated with gold
and precious gems. “Now this is what I call a real ship.” He pulled on a long thin gold ribbon. “I wonder what
A gaudily dressed
servent appeared. “Does his Majesty request anything?”
love a cup of coffee.” Mike replied.
“The Doctor hates the stuff, says it gives his hearts all the wrong signals.”
“What is coffee?” The servent asked.
mind, just bring me something hot with milk in it. I can pretend, I’ve
had enough practice at it with Alice’s experiments in tea preparation.”
better get back anyway.” The Doctor replied. “It’s almost time for Molly’s feed.” It’s
your turn again Mike, she’s really taken a liking to you.”
“Yes of course.” Q’uartz didn’t know what else to say.
Obviously this Molly was some sort of pet and he was expected to help feed it.
“I’ve always had a way with animals.”
“Huh?” Alice stopped in her tracks. “Has she started making animal shapes and you haven’t told me?”
“What? No.” Q’uartz knew he’d
said something vastly wrong.
The Doctor looked
deeply into Q’uartz’s eyes. This was not his friend. “Who are you? What have you done with the real Mike?”
Mike was surprised
by how quick the ship was moving. Tiny dots of light slid by like tiny fireflies
moving in the opposite direction to which they were travelling.
“We are approaching
Nokuy.” S’orc informed his King.
“We shall travel down to the palace by transmat beam. Please come
with me Majesty.”
want to leave this room but the word palace promised even more riches and the blustering geezer had said something about a
Queen. Maybe things were looking up for a change?
lay down on the sofa inside the TARDIS. She tried to listen to the conversation
the not-Mike was having with the Doctor. Apparently he was really some sort of
King who was running away from his people because of some sort of nasty ceremony they wanted him to perform. Most of the words were very large and her language files were not very large but the TARDIS helped with
the really difficult words.
can’t take me back there.” Q’uartz pleaded.
is in danger.” The Doctor’s voice was a harsh whisper that could
kill me!” Q’uartz shouted.
“That’s what the ceremony is for. So that I will transcend
this mortal realm, to become one of the kings of kings, and bring down a great blessing on my people. I don’t want to die Doctor.”
The Doctor looked
at the impostor. “We’ll sort something out, but first we have to
you help her first?” Q’uartz pointed to the robot female whose appearance
had gone from demure brunette to happy-go-lucky blonde.
hands blurred as he corrected Alice’s gyroscope. “Something’s take a lot more effort than that to solve.”
He handed the repaired component to his out of balance companion. “Just
wait a few seconds for your system to register the change, there now how do you feel?”
“A lot better.” Alice replied before falling fast asleep.
been a big day for her.” The Doctor stated casually. “You stay here while I go and see to Molly.”
know what to do when his wife, Queen P’xiana, hugged him and kissed him repeatedly.
you go?” She demanded. “They
told me you were attacked.” She felt his head. “Does it hurt?”
fine.” Mike replied. “It
just shook me up a little. Listen can we talk in private?”
my dearest, we will make love and then we will have the rest of the night to talk.”
Mike stopped dead
in his tracks. Being a King was one thing but taking advantage of someone like
this was way beyond acceptable. “Let us talk first, it’s important.”
“What is it
my love?” P’xiana was worried.
know how to say this, I’m not this King Q’uartz everyone thinks. My
name is Mike Weston, I’m from a planet called Earth.”
want to hear this. “You are King Q’uartz, you are my husband. I look at you and I see the man I married.”
“So I look
like someone you know, ask me a question though. I have no idea who you are,
where this place is or what is the name your people call God.”
please, this charade must stop.”
stop because it’s not a charade. I’m not your husband, I’m
not a king, and I’m not even the same species as you.”
you are, your blood is as purple as anyone else’s.”
Mike picked up a
wine glass and smashed it on a large dark read table. He picked up the sharpest
looking piece of glass and sliced into the palm of his hand with it. “My
blood is red, look at it!” He let it drip down onto the floor.
in shock. Truly this man was a stranger but with the face of her beloved. “This must be some deceit. How
much has my husband paid you? Tell me or I’ll have the guards execute you
Mike began to explain
everything that he knew. “Someone attacked me from behind and put me down
for the count. When I wake up this guy accosts me and all but frog marches me
into this shuttle. Then I wind up here and everyone thinks I’m some king. Tell me this is just a dream, please.”
a step forward. “It’s no dream, you are quite awake. This is a most disturbing revelation. My husband is due to
take part in the Elevation ceremony in less than five hours. Now I find out he’s
not here and the man I thought was he is not. I am unsure what to do.”
this ceremony? It’s just some talking yeah?”
ceremony will strip away your mortal tie to this realm and allow you to transcend to the heavens where you will become the
King of Kings for twenty generations. You will bring peace and harmony to our
peoples and to speak your name shall be a blessing to all those to have it on their lips.”
sound so bad, what is it just a lot of chanting and incense?”
sharp knives and red hot coals.” Queen P’xiana spat. “It’s a barbaric practice that’s long out dated.”
dropped open as his mind took in P’xiana’s words.
The Doctor returned
to the console room with Molly nestled quietly in his left hand. “Sssh,
not a word. I just got her too sleep.”
a baby?” Q’uartz gasped. “It
looks like a multi-coloured ball that a child might play with.”
A plaintive wail
came from the ball. “Now look what you’ve done.” The Doctor whispered.
eyes snapped open as her mothering circuits came online. She took her daughter
in her hands and sang several gigabytes worth of MP3 files to her in less than a second.
“There, all asleep again.” Alice
put Molly on the sofa. “She’s afraid, she knows that you’re
not her Uncle Mike.”
“Sorry.” Q’uartz said to the robot woman. “What
kind of people are you? Robot people and garishly dressed fools. Who are you?”
not a garishly dressed fool.” The Doctor pointed out. “Besides I like her outfit. I am known as the Doctor,
I’m welcomed by the hopeless, dreaded by the powerful and tolerated by the wise.
Chameleona is very sweet once you get to know her and Mike is a very unhappy young man, but you didn’t think
of that when you attacked him did you?”
“I, I, how
did you know?”
The Doctor removed
his oversized sunglasses and stared into Q’uartz’s soul. “I
know everything, I know too much and I reveal answers only to those who need them. You
my friend are a deeply troubled being. Your heart says one thing while your head
says another. Our hearts and our heads rule us all, normally they act as one
voice telling us what we should and shouldn’t do. Call it a conscience
if you like, or a soul. When there is division however both sides of our nature
talk and neither listen. We become troubled, fearful, and angry. What does your heart tell you?”
“That I want
to serve my people.”
your head tell you?”
want to die.”
The Doctor leaned
closer towards Q’uartz. “Do you trust me?”
He had only known
the Doctor for a few hours but somehow Q’uartz felt as if he could trust the Doctor with his life. “I may be crazy for saying this but yes, I do trust you.”
the co-ordinates for your planet? From the Galactic centre preferably.” The Doctor input the co-ordinates as Q’uartz spoke them. “Now to sort this whole mess out once and for all. Alice,
why don’t you put Molly down for the night?”
only talk?” Alice huffed before
taking her tiny child back to their room. “Honestly, you would think I
couldn’t patch into the internal speakers and listen to everything you say.”
The Doctor waited
until Alice was out of view down the corridor before locking the internal room. “Now that she’s left there are a few things I need to know. What is this ceremony you spoke of and what kind of danger is Mike in?”
you think he’ll be in danger?”
be this afraid if they were going to tickle your feet with feathers would you? Unless
you’re allergic to feathers of course.”
everything to the Doctor, every last detail, every last scrap of information from the ages past.
Mike sat down on
a low stone bench. He was trying to take in the enormity of the situation. Either they were going to kill him in some stupid ceremony or they were going to kill
him for being an impostor. No wonder the guy had run away, and the increased
security in the palace made sure that he could not repeat his double’s idea. He
stood up slowly. “I won’t go through with this. I’d rather die being myself than impersonating someone else.”
my people?” P’xiana demanded.
“They’ll tear this place apart if they hear the truth.”
“Screw them.” Mike swore. “This isn’t my
concern, to hell with the whole lot of you. You kidnap me, drag me here and then
expect me to go willingly to my death. You’re crazy lady, the whole lot
of you are you sick freaks.”
just like my husband now, he too was unwilling to perform the ceremony. However
it’s of no consequence, willingly or unwillingly you will take part in the ceremony.
I’m not having some alien trash like you risking my life.”
think I’m your King.” Mike snapped at the super bitch. “I’ll tell them that you’ve chosen to go on ahead of me.
If I’m going to be killed, I’ll watch you die first.”
dare.” P’xiana hissed like water dripping onto white-hot steel.
I got to loose?” Mike asked. “Seems
like this way I win.”
knocked on the internal door until it finally opened. She found the Doctor and
Q’uartz inside and both still intact. “I suppose you let me in here
because we’re nearly there?”
The console pinged. “Just arrived.” The Doctor
smiled at his youthful looking companion. “Shall we explore?”
rather look for Mike.” Alice
replied. “I’m worried about him.
He doesn’t have as much experience in dealing with these sorts of things as we do.”
The Doctor looked
at Alice. “You know Chameleona
I do think you’ve changed.”
ran a systems diagnostic. “My systems don’t report any change in
my appearance.” She was worried, was her systems breaking down?”
“I mean you’ve
grown as a person Alice.” The Doctor offered his proud student a jelly
“Oooh thanks. A yellow one!” Alice
didn’t need to eat, in fact food clogged up her systems but she could store the remains away in case the Doctor needed
one in an emergency.
The Doctor opened
the TARDIS doors. “Lets be about our business then.”
Mike and P’xiana
exchanged pure glares of hate. “We should run.” Mike suggested. “Together we can stand a chance. We need each other if we want to stay alive.”
we run to? Everyone on the face of the world knows our faces. We’d be spotted in seconds.”
“What if we
didn’t hide our looks? What if we pretended to be impersonators of the
King and Queen? Would they stop a couple of actors?”
“It is sacrilege
to impersonate my image!” P’xiana spat. “I should kill you for impersonating my husband.”
the impostor remember? I’m Mike; I’m the innocent party in all of
this. Can I help it if he has the same face as me?”
“You are lucky
I need you to ensure my safety or I’d run you though with a Ne’cco blade.”
try lady, I’ve seen too much pain and death to care about poor little selfish you anymore. If King dude were here I’d tell him to get a divorce.”
“I am here.” Q’uartz walked into his antechamber. “Sorry
about before, seems that your friends have your best interests at heart.”
“Hearts.” The Doctor replied casually.
order the guards to put this impostor to death at once.” P’xiana
pointed at Mike.
“Nothing doing.” Alice said before giving Mike a big hug. “Don’t ever do this to me again, do you hear me?”
honoured guests P’xiana. No harm shall become them.”
our most basic of laws, with their perversions.” P’xiana spat her
disgust onto the floor.
I have wronged and my people have wronged. No more injustice shall become him.” Q’uartz looked at Mike. “Can
you forgive a frightened man? I am truly sorry for my cowardly behaviour to you.”
“Yeah man. Just one thing though, ditch the missus she’s got a heart of stone.”
she was raised in the temple to be what she is. I knew who and what she was when
I agreed to our union. She is the very spirit of our people.”
a scum bucket of the cheapest order. She doesn’t give a damn about anyone
“Lies.” P’xiana spat in Mike’s face.
my guest P’xiana! You dishonour my command and you dishonour yourself. Get out of here, take yourself back to the temple and take the cup of Sunrise.”
The Doctor looked
at Q’uartz. “What’s that?”
“A mild narcotic,
it induces visions. I wish her to see the error of her ways. It is very painful but it will be a lesson in the ways of our people.
Forgive me once more Mike, it seems you were right, she was nothing but a selfish person.”
“Can we get
out of here now?” Mike asked. “If
those guys turn up and see two of us here then we’ll both get murderised.”
you take Mike back to the TARDIS. I’ll stay with Q’uartz.” The Doctor picked up a blue grape like fruit and cautiously ate it.
kept looking at Mike as they made their way back to the TARDIS. “You know
you both look exactly the same. I couldn’t tell you two apart. The Doctor could though, I think he suspected for a while.”
Mike put his arm
around his friend’s shoulder. “I’m just glad the two of you
found me. I thought my time was up, I really did.
I can’t leave my little niece in the lurch now can I?”
“No, she missed
you.” Alice stated. “She loves her big Uncle Mike.”
Mike saw the reassuringly
pleasant blue police telephone box shape of the TARDIS and hurried inside of it. “Boy
am I glad to be back in here. Remind me, the next time the Doctor suggests a
holiday I’m all for it ok?”
The Doctor sat with
Q’uartz as the young man waited for them to come. “Are you scared? We can leave any time you want. You don’t
have to go through with this if you don’t want to.”
frightened out of my skin Doctor. Every fibre of my being is screaming at me
to run away. I can’t though, there’s a whisper in the core of my
being that tells me not to doubt myself, that I should not be afraid.”
“A death wish?” The Doctor asked.
his head. “No, I don’t think so.
It’s more like the spirit of my people calling to me through my blood.
Maybe its just nerves?”
The Doctor looked
across as three guards and the chamberlain entered the room. “Hello there,
I’m the Doctor.”
an outsider. You should not be here.”
my guest.” Q’uartz stated.
“No one is to question his being here again, the Doctor goes where he wants to, he’s my friend.”
time Majesty.” The chamberlain announced.
“Where is your Queen?”
“She has gone
to the temple to drink from the cup of sunrise.” Q’uartz replied. “She showed treasonous disrespect to my guest.”
led the procession out of the antechamber. Q’uartz looked at the Doctor. “You should return to your friends now Doctor, there is nothing more that you
can do for me.” He removed a large ring from his finger. “Please give this to Mike, tell him that I’m sorry. I
have no heirs and which line they chose to replace mine will have their own seal. I
would like something of my lineage to continue on after I’m gone.”
The Doctor popped
the ring into his jacket pocket. “Goodbye Q’uartz, in the short time
we spent together I met someone who cared deeply for his people and someone who was prepared to give up everything for the
sake of his people.”
into the ascension chamber and the heavy golden doors closed behind him.
The Doctor made
his way back to the TARDIS. He walked slowly but determinedly to where his friends
were no doubt waiting for him. Putting his hand in his pocket he felt the large
gold ring and pulled it out to look at. The design was simple, a circle with
three stars inside of them. He put the ring back in his pocket and entered the
threw her arms around the Doctor’s waist and hugged him. “What took
you so long?”
“I was waiting
with Q’uartz.” The Doctor replied simply.
“He let himself
die?” Mike asked. “Wow,
judge the beliefs of others by our own opinions Mike. It’s disrespectful
at best, arrogance at worst.” He took the ring out of his pocket and handed
it to Mike. “He wanted you to have this.” The Doctor set the controls to take off, dematerialising the TARDIS into the vortex. A second later the central column stopped rising and falling, they had been drawn out of that which is
beyond reason or understanding back into reality.
turned the view screen on. “What’s that?” She asked as a huge column of yellow and white light flew past them from the surface of Nokuy, towards
three tiny stars in a sort of triangle shaped constellation.
“I guess something’s
are not meant to be explained.” The Doctor suggested. “They should only be appreciated.”
Mike looked at the
ring. The three stars on it were in exactly the same shape as the constellation
the beam of light was heading towards. “Yeah, lets get out of here.”
now Mike?” The Doctor asked his companion.
“I did say that it would be your choice this time.”
Mike looked at the
Doctor and then Alice. “I don’t know about you two, but I’d
really like the chance to try at least one of those roller coasters.”
“Yay!” Alice shouted and punched the air excitedly.
The Doctor pressed
the buttons on the console. “A wise choice Mike, perhaps you’re learning
thinks I’m smart too.” Alice
it so well though.” Mike joked to his friend before letting her have a
look at his new ring.