THE ELEVEN DOCTORS

Chapter 10

A tall, white haired dignified looking gentleman quickly rounded the corner of the military base's H.Q.. He was dressed in Victorian style garments consisting of a frilly white shirt, and a burgundy and tan plaid suit and trousers with matching cape. Behind him strode a dark haired, mustached man in a military uniform. The military type was scowling fiercely at the back of other man.

"I'm afraid you don't understand, Doctor." The military man shouted. "I cannot allow you to just come and go from this base willy-nilly, any time some whim catches your fancy."

The Doctor stopped and rounded on the soldier so abruptly, that the other man almost collided with him. He'd had so backpedal slightly, to keep from crashing into the Doctor's chest.

"My dear brigadier," The Doctor said somewhat crossly to the head of U.N.I.T. Brigadier Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart, "may I remind you that I am not officially a member of Her Majesty's armed forces? I am merely your civilian scientific advisor. And since I have nothing to advise you on at the moment, I'm going to my TARDIS."

With that, the Doctor turned and once again strode down the corridor leading to the laboratory where he kept his ship.

"And another thing, Brigadier. Time Lords don't go about willy-nilly. Though I admit that we may do a bit of shilly-shallying sometimes." The Doctor remarked dryly as he continued walking. "As for myself, I always have a purpose to my comings and goings."

"Was that what you called your last joy-ride, Doctor?" The brigadier deliberately needled him, as he followed the Doctor through the lab doors.

The Doctor turned to face the Brigadier, opening his mouth to protest. Then, he stopped. Giving a rueful grin, he nodded.

"Yes, I suppose that little adventure wasn't exactly a planned excursion. I've no idea why the TARDIS suddenly decided to deviate from her flight path. Still, it's not everyday one has the chance to watch shooting stars from a mountaintop in Colorado with John Denver. He was trying to write some song about smoking marijuana and hugging trees. I convinced him that he'd be better off singing about getting high naturally on the Rocky Mountains. Lovely chap, John. We ended up doing a duet around the campfire. I played the Martian dulcimer..."

"That's all very well, Doctor." The brigadier interrupted impatiently. And while you're off singing around the campfire, we had an unusual earthquake in south Wales. Because you weren't here to investigate for us, I had to hand it off to another government agency called Toró"

"Brigadier, I'm a Time Lord, not a geologist. Although," The Doctor scratched his head. "it's true that I am your scientific advisor. But an earthquake is normally a natural phenomena. Was any alien activity recorded with this incident?"

"Not that I'm aware of Doctor, no. However, that other agency has refused to cooperate with us. This institute or whatever it is, isn't known for its information sharing. They're even more secret than our own organization."

"Well there, you see?" The Doctor said reassuringly, fetching out his slightly triangular shaped key with the odd markings on it, and unlocking the TARDIS door. "If it had been anything serious, I'm quite sure they would have consulted you, brigadier."

"That's not the point, Doctor!" The brigadier shouted, as the TARDIS door was shut in his face. "Where are you going now? We need you here!"

"I can assure you sir, that I'm not going anywhere for the time being." came the Doctor's muffled voice from inside his ship, "I'm merely checking the power couplings on the positronic micron dynamo...oh, hello! An incoming message. Now where in Rassillon did that come from?"

No more was heard from the Doctor for several minutes. Suddenly, the brigadier felt like a fool. He was simply standing there staring at a big blue police box. Just as he was about to turn away and leave the lab, a sudden wind picked up from out of nowhere. The brigadier heard the sound of the ship's engines beginning to grind away.

"Doctor! I forbid you to leave. Come back here!" He shouted at the now-fading TARDIS.

Over the sound of the departure, the brigadier could have sworn he heard the Doctor say, "Sorry, brigadier. I have to help myself!"

On the same planet but , another Doctor was having an entirely different problem with the military.

The Doctor ducked, as he was showered with a geyser of dirt. "Jamie! Zoe! Keep down, both of you!" The little man in the dark suit shouted. He had a mop of black hair, not too unlike that of the Beatles, and a wizened, merry face. A face which at the moment was creased with worry.

His TARDIS had landed smack in the middle of some 19th century battlefield. Heaven only knew which one. It could be anywhere in Europe, Africa, India or North America. Before he could stop him, the Doctor's companion, Jamie McCrimmon had suddenly gotten overly excited. He'd bolted out of the TARDIS door, shouting some battle cry of his Scottish clan. Apparently he thought he'd ended up back at the battlefield of Culloden, where the Doctor had first taken him aboard.

His other companion, Zoe, a girl from the far future, had rushed out to stop Jamie. Now they were both caught in the middle of what appeared to be a major battle. There were times like this, the Doctor thought while mopping his sweating brow with a colourful red handkerchief, that he was glad he'd regenerated from an old man into a younger one. These two companions of his were certainly giving him quite a workout.

Looking out from his position on a hilltop, he suddenly spied a familiar figure in a kilt on the other side of the valley below. Alongside him was a girl in a silvery short dress. Jamie and Zoe! Somehow, they'd made their way across the cannonball and bullet riddled plain to the other side. The Doctor breathed a sigh of relief knowing they were still alive.

Without warning, there came a sudden lull in the battle. All cannon and gunfire ceased. The Doctor breathed a collective sigh of relief. Perhaps it was a ceasefire. But somehow, it didn't feel like one. The sudden hush over the battle suddenly felt like that eerie calm one got before a violent thunderstorm broke loose in the heavens.

Then, the Doctor spied movement from the far left of his vision. A large detachment of horsemen were moving down the middle of the valley. Nearly seven hundred horses and men trotted swiftly forward in perfect formation towards a large battery of heavy guns at the other end of the valley. The men in red trousers and blue and gold braided jackets sat their horses proudly and calmly, their gold-trimmed bearskin hats topped with red horse hair plumes bobbing up and down in perfect unison, as if they were on a parade ground.

The Doctor groaned. He now knew exactly where he was. The Battle of Sebastopol. He was witnessing the famous charge of the Light Brigade.

There was no way he could reach his companions on foot now. He'd have to use the TARDIS, and hope that he could get it to land close to their location. Which was quite difficult at the best of times. But, the Doctor knew he had to try.

Scrambling inside his ship, he fussed over the controls, his face screwed up with stress and concern. Which became even more concerned, when his ship decided to put herself into flight, all on her own.

"Oh, goodness me!" The Doctor said incredulously, staring worriedly at the controls. "This is no time to go sightseeing. Where are you going? You can't do that! We have to save Jamie and Zoe!"

But the TARDIS wasn't listening. She'd just received a distress call, and was determined to answer it. For the time being, Jamie and Zoe were on their own.

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