Book 1: The Renegade
Prologue: The Beginning of the End
The alarm claxon was blaring throughout the Capitol. The domed city of the Time Lords of Gallifrey was in complete and utter chaos. People had cleared the streets, the corridors and
even the halls of the city, the Panopticon resembled a ghost town.
It was through the deserted halls of the Citadel that a slender, stooped, white haired elderly man was making his way. He was dressed in a black Victorian frock coat, checkered trousers,
striped vest with a wing collared shirt and tie. He was hurrying along the corridor, staying close to the walls and moving with caution mixed with desperation. He looked back over his
shoulder and quickly motioned for the young woman to follow him.
“Make haste Susan,” the elderly man groaned. “We have to make it to the Repair Center before they realize that the Transduction Barrier is down.”
The girl came to him quickly. Tears were streaming down her cheeks and a sob escaped from her.
“I can’t believe this is happening?” she sobbed.
The elderly man put a reassuring arm about her shoulders. “There will be time to grieve, Susan. But it cannot be now. The Citadel Guard have been mobilized. They have
orders to shoot anyone out of quarters. The Lord President has proclaimed martial law. No one is safe now. This attempted coup struck too close to home. Everyone will be
suspect, especially us.”
“How could this have happened, Grandfather?” Susan wept. “Who could have done this?”
“Who can understand the hearts of evil beings?” the elderly man replied softly. He regained his gruff demeanor quickly. “I did hear a name, however. And I intend to find out
who this ‘Master’ is. Now let’s move while we still have a chance of getting free from this nightmare.”
The man lying face down upon the desk in the main office of Temporal Capsule Repair Center 3 was a middle aged man with hair that was almost completely gray now. There were still traces
of his dark hair peppered through but the gray hair was winning out over the dark. The man was face down upon the desk, his head resting amidst a desktop cluttered with paper, parts, a large
open lockbox and a scattering of keys.
He was dressed in a simple gray tunic and trousers over which he wore an apron, the type of apron worn by a worker. In his case he was a worker, a type of mechanic to be exact. His
name was Ascaloniscalawagsinhyle (in the language of the Time Lords) or Ascalon for short. Ascalon was beginning to stir, a groan escaping from him as he did so. His head was pounding with
Ascalon awoke with perhaps the worst headache he could ever remember having. It seemed as each breath brought new cascading pain through his cranium. As he sat up he realized he was
seated behind his desk and that not only his breathing, but the alarm claxon sounding throughout the Capitol was adding to the cascading waves of his headache.
Why am I at my desk when I should be home asleep? Ascalon pondered briefly.
He moved to stand but the sudden wave of nausea and pain convinced him to stay seated. He wondered why no one had bothered to turn that annoying claxon off.
He looked at the top of his desk and noticed that there were several things out of place there. For one his comm link was out of position. Then his drawers looked as if they had
been ransacked, and the most annoying thing was that the Key box was dumped over and there were dozens of TARDIS keys strewn about the surface of his desk.
“What the hell is going on?” he asked himself.
He scooped up a handful of the Keys and stood up from behind the desk. He had to put a hand on his desk to steady himself as another wave of nausea and pain came over him. It was
then that he heard the commotion from the Maintenance Chamber outside of his office. It sounded as if thirty people were running about.
He swallowed hard against his headache and forced himself to the door. There, he was reaching to open the door when the first sounds of a TARDIS dematerializing reached his
ears. Anger flared quickly through Ascalon and he stabbed the door’s button fiercely only to be answered by a quick electrical ‘pop’ and a small shower of sparks. The door did not whisk
open as it should have done. The sound of another TARDIS dematerializing began and that was when Ascalon realized that there was something terribly wrong going on here.
With that brain splitting claxon sounding he stabbed the button again but the door did not move.
Ascalon reached into his apron pocket and there withdrew his sonic screwdriver. A few moments later the door slid open and Ascalon emerged. The first thing he noticed was that there
were several TARDIS capsules missing from the chamber, most notably the Type 75 capsule that had been brought in for temporal overhaul by none other than the Castellan (the head of Gallifreyan
security) himself. Oh there were still some type 50’s and even an old Type 40 still in the chamber, but the newer models were gone.
It was then that the entrance to the Maintenance Chamber opened and in rushed a young woman that was very familiar to Ascalon. Her name was Sarah; no, that wasn’t
right. Susan! Susan was her name. She didn’t appear to be very happy; in fact she was in tears and sobbing.
“Susan!” Ascalon spoke quickly, holding his aching head and still trying to figure out what was going on. “What are you doing here? And why in bloody hell is that claxon
An astounded look came over Susan’s tear streaked face.
“You don’t know? They have killed everyone!” Susan screamed with emotion. “All of my family has been killed in the Coup!”
“The Citadel Guard have orders to shoot anyone out of their quarters, Ascalon,” came a familiar voice from behind Susan.
Ascalon shifted his eyes to the newcomer making his way through the door. Ascalon almost bowed before the man. He was one of the more revered of the Time Lords.
“What is going on Doctor?”
The stooped white haired man hurried up to him.
“There has been an attempted coup against the Time Lords. Many have been killed and or captured. The High Council has lost members and now the Citadel Guard are under orders to kill
anyone who resists and treat everyone as suspect until all of the conspirators have been captured or killed,” the Doctor explained quickly. “I have been named on their list of
“Rubbish! Anyone who knows you knows better than that!” Ascalon spat, in disbelief, of what he was being told.
The Doctor grabbed Ascalon by his tunic, his face twisted with emotion. “They attacked my house! My family! I have to get Susan out of here, and I suggest you do the
“Only a conspirator would have allowed for the five TARDISes missing from here to have been taken! You are not safe Ascalon. Get off of Gallifrey until the High Council can sort
this matter out. That’s what we’re doing.”
Ascalon could not believe his ears. This wasn’t possible! It was unheard of!
“Who did this Doctor?” Ascalon asked, almost pleadingly. “Who could have perpetrated such a thing?”
“No one is certain as of yet. I have heard it said that someone known only as ‘the Master’ is behind all of this. But I do know that my name is on their list. When they discover
that the Transduction Barrier is down and several TARDISes under your watch have been appropriated, your name will be on that list as well.” The Doctor spoke quickly. “I beg of you, Ascalon,
come with us, save yourself!”
Ascalon could see the emotional pain in the Doctor’s eyes; he could see the truth there as well. Ascalon handed the Doctor a Key. “Go, save your granddaughter.”
“Save yourself Ascalon. Get off of Gallifrey while you can. The Time Lords are going to be most severe in dealing with this coup.”
“Your right,” Ascalon agreed. His head was aching and he was still groggy. Those responsible for the missing TARDIS units must have done this. But how? Drugged him
possibly? “I’m leaving as well.”
Ascalon knew that such an attempted coup against the Time Lords and the Council of Time Lords would be met most swiftly, most severely. They would incarcerate him first and then ask
questions later. How long it would be before his interrogation he could not even attempt to guess at.
The Doctor shook Ascalon’s hand. “Thank you my friend. I will never forget what you have done for me.”
The Doctor looked down at the key that Ascalon had given him. “Ah, a Type 40. I always loved those old capsules.”
He then turned and quickly grabbed Susan by the hand. He crossed the chamber to the Type 40 Model TARDIS, a simple Romanesque column of blue resting on the platform. The Doctor quickly
unlocked the door and Susan hurried inside. The Doctor paused and turned to Ascalon.
“Where will you go, Doctor?” Ascalon asked.
“I have always had a fondness for Earth. Quite a peaceful little Temporal Nexus Point located in Mutter’s Spiral.” The Doctor replied.
Ascalon smiled to the old Time Lord. “Talk about going into hiding.”
“Where will you go?” the Doctor asked.
Ascalon shrugged his shoulders, and then tossed his sonic screwdriver to the old Time Lord. “Take it, you’re gonna need it if you plan on going far in that old TARDIS.”
The Doctor caught the screwdriver and smiled. “I will cherish it.”
The Doctor smiled a weak smile and then disappeared into the TARDIS. There was dull hum that grew as the capsule was being powered up and within a few seconds the old blue pillar
dematerialized and was gone. Ascalon stood and looked at the empty space, wondering how and why his life had just been turned upside down.
A viewscreen located on the wall behind Ascalon suddenly blinked on.
Ascalon turned and looked directly into the face of the Castellan himself.
“You have allowed for criminals against the government to flee Gallifrey! You are under arrest Ascalon, I have already dispatched Citadel Guards to bring you in.”
Ascalon smiled sadly to the Castellan. “You know me better than that Borusa. I am no traitor, but judging from what the Doctor has told me it would be unwise to wait around to prove
Ascalon gripped a key from the many he held and pocketed the remaining keys. “I sure am going to miss this place,” he sighed.
Ascalon turned his back to the Castellan and crossed the chamber to one of the Type 50 capsules.
“Don’t you dare, Ascalon! If you so much as step one foot in that capsule you will be forever known as a traitor!”
“Traitor?” Ascalon sighed, he then turned the key and stepped inside. No sooner had he closed the door to the TARDIS did a full squad of the Citadel Guard come storming into the
Maintenance Chamber. They watched, helpless, as the TARDIS dematerialized before their eyes.
Ascalon crossed the console room of the TARDIS and quickly engaged the TARDIS force field. Standing at the hexagonal console he began powering up the TARDIS, getting the capsule ready
He looked about the console room and found that the accommodations seemed somewhat luxurious. The floor was of polished marble. The console itself rested atop a two step dais which
stood in the midst of four Romanesque looking columns. The console room was large and looked to be about fifty feet by fifty feet square. There were columns in the corners of the
room. There were also two sets of double doors (on opposite walls) that led out of the console room.
It only took a few seconds for the TARDIS to power up. He then made his way to the panel that contained the navigation controls and there he met with his first quandary as a
Where does one go to hide out from the most technologically advanced people in the universe?
The Doctor had the right idea; someplace small and insignificant. Somewhere off the ‘beaten’ path as it were.
Ascalon had always wanted to see the marvels of Teknos. Teknos it would be. He punched in the coordinates from memory and as the Time Rotor in the center of the console illuminated
to readiness, Ascalon pushed the button and silently he said goodbye to Gallifrey, to his home and the life that he had known.
PART 1: RENEGADE TIME LORD
Chapter 1: Watson and the Great Escape
Ascalon watched as the Time Rotor began to rise and descend in the middle of the control console. Satisfied that take off had gone off without a hitch, he decided he had better tackle
the problem of disconnecting the recall circuit. Each TARDIS unit has a recall circuit built into it. When activated (on Gallifrey by the Time Lords) that TARDIS returned home, whether
the occupants wanted it to or not.
Ascalon knew that disconnecting the recall circuit was a tricky endeavor. TARDIS engineering had made it so that a TARDIS did not function if the recall circuit was tampered with, let
alone disconnected. Luckily Ascalon was well versed in TARDIS engineering, had to be since he was one of the more revered of TARDIS technicians on Gallifrey.
He quickly climbed beneath the console and went to work. As he was tracing wires and circuits through the pedestal of the control console he became aware that there was someone standing
near him, her shiny black heeled shoes just a few feet away.
“I wouldn’t mess with that if I were you?” a woman’s voice said with a haughty tone to it.
“Thank goodness you are not me,” Ascalon responded.
“You could short out my Time Rotor,” the woman continued. “Then where would we go?”
“Trust me,” Ascalon said quietly. “I know my way around your innards.”
“Then just how do you propose disconnecting my recall circuit without shorting out my Time Rotor, if I may ask?” There was a hint of concern in that haughty voice.
“Elementary Watson,” Ascalon smiled. “I only disconnect the temporal navigational override junctures of the recall circuit. I leave the indicator junctures intact and thus maintain
the semblance that the entire recall circuit is intact. When Gallifrey activates the recall circuit we will know because it will light up.”
There was silence for a moment.
“That is clever,” the woman finally responded, sounding impressed. “Why call me Watson?”
“Just a little fun,” Ascalon replied. “You do know Sherlock Holmes?”
“Not personally no, but I do understand the reference now.”
Ascalon continued beneath the console.
“Clever,” she said again.
“Yes, yes I have my moments.”
A few moments of silence followed and then Ascalon emerged from beneath the console. As he climbed to his feet another wave of nausea and pain swept over him. Ascalon grabbed a hold
of the console to stay upon his feet. His headache was killing him.
“Does that feel okay to you?” Ascalon asked, shaking his head as if to clear away the cobwebs.
“Very much so,” the woman responded. “But how are you feeling?”
Ascalon noted the concern in her voice. As he stood he was finally was able to see the owner of the shiny heeled shoes. She was a young woman and clad in the uniform of what
reminded Ascalon of a butler, a service maid.
How quaint, Ascalon mused. This TARDIS has a holographic interface.
“I have a killer headache, my stomach is trying very hard to create a mess on your floor, I have been forced to flee my planet and my people for crimes that I had no hand in. Other than
that, I’m just fine, Jeeves.”
The woman placed her hand to her chin, deep in thought. Then she looked back to Ascalon with her penetrating dark eyes. “I think I prefer Watson over Jeeves.”
“Then Watson it is,” Ascalon smiled. She was a blond haired woman and she was quite attractive in her appearance. He couldn’t help but notice that her holographic body was very well
proportioned. She, Watson, seemed to notice that he noticed as well.
“My eyes are up here, sir,” she said smiling.
“Yes,” Ascalon stammered, “so they are. Tell me Watson, what was the primary function of this TARDIS unit?”
The woman smiled at Ascalon’s apparent embarrassment. My primary function was used in the conveyance of Time Lords to crucial astronomical events within the universe, and to do so in
luxury and style.”
“You mean a temporal cruise ship?” Ascalon laughed; and yes, it hurt. His headache was really beginning to boom now.
Watson scowled. “Yes, I guess it is. Why?”
“It is elementary my dear Watson. Now this TARDIS is an escape pod, a getaway vehicle. With the recall circuit rewired the Time Lords won’t be able to bring us back.” Ascalon leaned
heavily upon the console. He was feeling weaker by the second. The pain was spreading too quickly and he was beginning to find it difficult to keep his mind focused.
“Why are we escaping Gallifrey?” Watson asked, moving to stand before Ascalon. She was looking into his brown eyes, as if she were searching through his very mind for some
explanation to their hasty departure. “You seem unwell.”
Ascalon smiled to Watson. He found that she was a very beautiful hologram. “Gallifrey is in turmoil. There was an attempted coup against the Time Lords. I have been
falsely implicated and until the High Council can sort the matter out I need to be elsewhere.”
Watson smiled. “Teknos?”
“Might as well try and enjoy my little holiday away from home,” Ascalon smiled through the pain.
“Follow me,” Watson said softly. She turned on her heel and was walking to the door that was directly opposite the main door or entrance into the TARDIS control room.
“Where are we going?”
“We need to get you to the medical bay,” she replied. “I have scanned your body and there seems to be an issue ensuing that may be threatening your very life.”
“Issue? What issue?” Ascalon began to follow her. “I don’t have any issues?”
Watson held the door open for him. “I disagree. You seem to have been subjected to a high concentrated dose of Terynarium. You do realize that Terynarium is poisonous do you
Of course! That was how ‘they’ were able to render me unconscious and get their hands on the TARDIS keys.
“Very,” Watson replied. “You may have been given a fatal dose.”
She was guiding him down a brightly lit hallway of what appeared to be floored and walled in polished marble. There were vines and a vast variety of flowering plants growing along the
walls. The vines were entwined about the roundels impressed into the walls, and which seemed to provide the lighting.
“Your architectural configuration is very pleasing,” Ascalon noted.
“Thank you very much,” Watson replied, sounding as if she flattered by his compliment. “Castellan Borusa did so like to keep up a somewhat casual setting for his guests.”
Ascalon stopped. “This was Borusa’s TARDIS?”
“Actually on loan to him under sanction from the Lord President,” Watson responded, waving for Ascalon to continue onward. “The medical bay is just ahead, sir.”
Ascalon leaned against the wall. His head was feeling as if it were going to explode.
“He is not going to be happy about this then is he?”
“I wouldn’t believe so,” Watson replied.
“I don’t feel so well,” Ascalon groaned. Then he pitched forward and fell to the floor, the darkness of unconsciousness taking him.
PART 1: TALOS PRIME
Chapter 1: Terynarium
Ascalon awoke to a sharp pain in his left arm and he sat bolt upright to find that he was lying upon a padded examination bed in what he could only assume was the TARDIS Medical Bay. He
looked about and saw that there were at least ten medical stations within the Med Bay, each station having its own diagnostic scanners and terminals.
Watson was standing at the bed’s side, her servant attire now replaced with a tight fitting nursing uniform that showed much cleavage.
“Again,” Watson said scoldingly, “my eyes are up here.” She was holding a syringe.
“Sorry,” Ascalon said sheepishly. Then, almost as an afterthought; “What exactly did you inject me with?”
Watson smiled to her patient. “A broad spectrum anti-toxin to combat the Terynarium.”
“Then I’m saved?”
“Not exactly,” Watson said softly. “Terynarium is a somewhat rare poison. It is normally associated with miners of Dyrinium ore. Unfortunately we do not use Dyrinium ore to
power the TARDIS.”
“So what do we do now?” Ascalon inquired. Then his eyes grew large as he just realized something. “If you’re a hologram how were you able to pick up that syringe and inject
Watson reached out and patted Ascalon on the top of the head as if he were a small child asking simple questions.
“I am not a hologram,” she responded. “I am an architectural construct of the TARDIS interface. I can actually affect my surroundings and perform duties that are required of
Ascalon smiled. “Then I chose the right TARDIS to borrow then didn’t I?”
Watson placed the syringe on a tray and slid the diagnostic scanner out of the way. She sat down on the edge of the bed. “Terynarium poisoning is somewhat fatal if not
treated. Unfortunately I do not have the necessary antidote for Terynarium.”
“I have changed our course. Teknos will have to wait. I am taking you to Talos Prime.”
Talos Prime. Even he had heard of Talos Prime; the galaxy famous medical station known as one of the premier medical stations of its age. They would have the antidote for
“My, aren’t you clever,” Ascalon smiled.
Watson winked to him, “More than you know.”
Ascalon moved to climb down from the bed and he did so he felt his brain ache and his stomach was a bit nauseas, but not nearly as bad as he had felt earlier. “How long do I
Watson walked over to the medical scanner and she was reading the panel. “The poison has been slowed and you should feel much better. But you only have about 12 hours to find that
antidote before you really begin to feel the effects of the Terynarium. And trust me when I tell you that you don’t want to go there.”
“What happens then?”
“Cellular breakdown of your major organs, including the brain, as well as severe pain and insanity,” Watson said glibly. “And then you’re dead.”
“What about regeneration? Will Terynarium hamper that, if I need to as a last resort?”
“You can’t regenerate when your brain is a puddle of gray goo in your skull,” Watson replied. “But not to worry, everything you need can be found at the Talos Prime facility. I have
programmed our arrival during the great Dyrinium Rush. Lots of miners were brought there for treatment.”
Ascalon visibly relaxed. “I like this place already.”
“The anti-toxins that I administered have slowed the poison’s progression but you only have about twelve hours to get the antidote into your system. I have also administered a pain
suppressant to cover the effects of the poison you have already suffered.”
Ascalon smiled and looked Watson deeply in her eyes. “Thank you.”
Watson returned the smile. “No,” she replied softly, “thank you. It feels good to have someone to care for again.”
Ascalon carefully climbed to his feet and felt the slightest twinge of pain from his headache. His stomach didn’t like him moving though. “By chance is there anything for the
“Come on,” Watson was walking toward the door of the Med Bay, “we have to get you dressed. You can’t go in there dressed like that.”
Annya Suari held her breath and remained completely motionless. She could hear the rustling of bare feet moving along the corridor outside of the dark janitorial closet she had found as
a haven for the past day and a half. Fear was running wild through her entire body and her heart was pounding so loud that she almost couldn’t hear beyond it.
Must relax, she told herself. Help would be coming. There still had to be those on board Telos Prime that were not infected. There had to be. The Doctors here were
The rustling footsteps were fading into the distance and when she could no longer hear them she sighed and tried to relax as best she could. She pulled a bottle of water from a janitor’s
cart and slowly took a small sip. The bottle was almost empty. She wouldn’t be able to hide out in this closet much longer. Starvation and thirst would bring her out of
There had to be some of the staff that had been uninfected. Surely they would be working on a vaccine or something. Wouldn’t security details be searching for those that were
uninfected? Why was this happening?
It had all began three days ago when that damn cruise liner had come into dock.
It has started with the sick passengers of the Royal Cruise Liner Queen Abigail. The liner had come in from cruising near the Osiris Nebula with reports of a sudden outbreak of a
flu-like virus. It had gone downhill from there.
Annya had begun to regret taking this job after all. The pay was great for custodial work. But now she was beginning to believe that cleaning state rooms back on Pellam III wasn’t
as bad as she had once thought. Now she was stuck in a janitor’s closet on the most respected medical station in the Federation, avoiding infected people that were now mindless zombies rather
It was terrifying. Those that were infected with this mystery virus came down with flu-like symptoms, but only after either being bitten or having some form of fluid contact with someone
that was infected. It seemed that after only a few short hours those that were infected seemingly died. Of course they only remained ‘dead’ for an hour or so. Then they simply got up
and went looking for someone that was not infected so as to bite them and infect them, or worse. She had heard stories that these zombies were actually eating people on the lower
decks. She had heard a doctor saying that only through ingestion of oxygen rich blood or blood rich tissue could these dead zombies get enough needed oxygen to keep functioning.
It was a bad horror vid-movie come true! And Annya hated horror vids.
Annya’s thoughts were quickly drawn back to the present as she heard movement once again from out in the hallway. This time it was different. It was quiet movement. Deliberate
movement. It wasn’t the mindless zombie shuffle she had endured while in hiding for the past day and a half.
Someone bumped into something, a gurney or other cart, out in the litter strewn hallway. A shushing whisper quickly followed and then all was quiet.
Annya’s heart beat in her chest wildly. They were people! Uncontaminated people! She crawled to the closet’s door and pressed an ear up to it. She could hear two people
“Damn it to hell will you be careful!” a man hissed angrily.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t see the damn food cart there,” came a whispered female reply.
They were just outside of the door!
Annya decided to take a chance. She rapped on the door gently, three quick knocks and two slow knocks.
It fell very quiet in the hallway beyond the closet door. Annya could just imagine a frightened man and woman trying to figure out if that noise they just heard was human or something
more sinister. To ease their minds Annya repeated the light knocking upon the closet door.
The reply knocks frightened Annya just as much as her knocks had probably done to the others.
She caught her breath and her beating heart and returned the knocks once more.
“Hello? Are you in there?” the man’s voice (a mere whisper) asked.
“Yes, in the closet,” Annya replied, tears coming to her eyes.
“Are you, you know, unharmed?” the man asked.
“Yes,” Annya responded. “I have not been exposed.”
There was movement beyond the door; Annya could see shadows moving under the door.
The door slowly opened, forcing Annya to scurry back quickly, and a man entered and was looking down at where Annya knelt on the floor. The man pointed a large gun at her
“Why are you down there?” he whispered.
“Been in here for a day and a half,” Annya wept, “hiding from those things.”
The man, dressed in a security guard’s uniform, stepped around her as he entered the closet. He was followed almost immediately by a young woman dressed in a nursing uniform, who was
carrying a firearm as well. Once they were inside the man closed the door.
“How long has it been since you have seen or heard them?” the man asked quickly.
“Just a few minutes ago,” Annya replied. You were following them?”
“Holy Christmas,” the woman gasped. “We were following them!”
The man leaned against the wall, sighing.
“Then I’m glad you knocked when you did,” the man said as he sat down and offered a gloved hand to Annya. “William Marshal, you can call me Will. This is Dianne.”
“Annya,” she replied softly, shaking their hands. “What’s going on out there?”
It was Dianne that responded. “It’s bad. The zombies have taken all of the lower decks and two decks above us. Decks 1-26 are unaffected but they won’t hold out for
long. These zombies are getting more aggressive and their hunger is driving them upwards in the decks.”
“How do we get up there?”Annya asked, fear in her whisper.
“Will has an idea,” Dianne replied.
“At the end of this hall there is a supply station,” Will began. “There is a transmat pad there. I think we could use that transmat pad to beam up to the secure decks.”
Annya nodded to Will. “I know where that is. The only problem is that was the direction that they were going just a few minutes ago. I heard them shuffling by.”
Will cursed and set his head back against the wall with a dull thud. “It is the only thing I can come up with.”
Ascalon stepped before the full length mirror in his newly acquired quarters. As far as quarters went he found he couldn’t complain, after all it was better than his apartment back on
Gallifrey. In this room there was a large king sized bed, spacious living area (complete with a kitchen).
The clothes that he now sported were simple jeans, running shoes (or sneakers as Watson had called them), a pullover shirt completed with a black leather jacket. His grey hair and brown
eyes combined with his gentle face to give the look of a casual laid back person.
It was the dark circles under his eyes and the slight twinge of pain in the back of his brain that reminded him that time was precious.
“Well,” Ascalon asked, “how do I look?”
“You will not stand out like a sore thumb among the people of Telos Prime.”
Ascalon turned to Watson, a most serious look on his face. “How are we going to convince these people to treat me?”
Watson smiled warmly to Ascalon. “We are not going to. You are going to. I cannot leave the TARDIS.”
Ascalon sputtered for a moment. “Me, alone? I am just a technician.”
“I think you will figure it out,” Watson said smiling. “You could always try that aged old practice of asking ‘Is there a doctor in the house?’ since Telos Prime is a hospital.”
Ascalon rolled his eyes at Watson.
“And just what do you know of Telos Prim
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