• Published 14th Apr 2013
  • 2,059 Views, 54 Comments

Perhaps Death - WritingSpirit



The Doctor finds himself stuck in prison, unable to remember anything he had experienced prior to his awakening. With the help of his diary, enchanted with magic, he tries to piece his life back together, not knowing what might await him at the end.

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Silver Linings Softly Woven—

1024 AC, ? Month, ? Day, ? h/min/s

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Migraine after migraine after migraine.

It's always migraines with these kinds of things. Seriously, you'd think after centuries of magic, unicorns would provide a little more practicality to go with the fancy, schmancy, sparkly mumbo-jumbo they loved to show off. Yes, you can view the past, but guess what, it also comes prepackaged with a headache, free of charge and nonrefundable! Ah yes, just what the Doctor ordered! What a wonderful, once in a lifetime offer, don't you think so?

If they could at least fork over some painkillers, that'd be great. Wait, hang on, do they even give painkillers for prisoners behind bars? Is that a thing in Equestria? I mean, it has to be. It's not like the prisons here are chock full of ponies — you can thank the princesses and their little teachings of harmony for that — and whatever ponies that are actually in here wouldn't dare start a petty fight even if they wanted to. So yes, painkillers might not be a common request, but it shouldn't be too much of a hassle! You think with all those guards standing around, they could just send one to the nearest pharmacy or something! Then again, do painkillers even work on this kind of magically-induced headache? I would think so, sparkly mumbo-jumbo and whatnot.

"Hello out there!" I called out, glancing at the empty hallways between the bars. "Can the Doctor get a bottle of painkillers over here?"

The lack of response was a little disconcerting. You'd think they'd at least send the rookie among the guards to give my cell door a bang to shut me up, but no. Not that I wanted them to do it anyway, but it does add a little spice in the life of the Doctor as it is right now. You'd be thinking about it too if you're spending every day pacing around this small jail cell, weaving spiderwebs with dental floss and rattling the cell bars until you finally decide it's worth it to brave through a migraine just to delve back into the many places and faces of the past over the daily slog.

This is all just another day in the Doctor's life now. Lovely, isn't it?

"You called?"

The effeminate voice broke me out from my sullen reverie. Turning my gaze back beyond the bars, I smiled when I saw none other than Princess Luna standing before me, her solemn stare akin to her sister's yet somewhat... more delicate, you could say. I do like myself a delicate stare, though if I'm to be perfectly honest, I'd much prefer her company over Celestia's. Not too uptight and a bit more understanding. "Yes, painkillers," I repeated. "I. Need. Painkillers. Last thing I need is another whiny little ache in my head when I read this—" I held up the logbook in my hoof "—and also, I need more dental floss. It's hard to profit from arachnoid real estate without the right resources. Also, I might need an idea for my next housing project. What do you think? Luxury condominium? Or just a set of bungalows?"

The princess lithely grinned. "It's strange."

"Strange?" I chimed at that word, stomping up towards her. "No, I tell you what's strange. I've had a steady income of dental floss ever since I've woken up in this place, but for some reason, ever since a few days ago, it all just stopped coming. That's what's strange!'"

"And you're certain the dentist didn't just run out of any to give you?"

"She's a dentist! If she runs out of dental floss to give, then what good is she for?" I rasped. "Oh, and one more thing, I need my reading glasses. Have you seen them? And while you're at it, perhaps you could find my sonic screwdriver?"

Blimey, you should've seen her frown.

"What for?"

"Oh, you'll never know! I might have a few uninvited guests!"

"And how am I to ascertain that you wouldn't use it merely to entertain your... guests?"

"Never know if you try." I shrugged. "Could do a lot of things with my reading glasses. Entertaining my guests is just first on the list."

"And your sonic screwdriver?"

"In case they're not entertained, of course!"

Princess Luna turned her snout up at my retort. "I think you can entertain your guests just fine without your screwdriver, Doctor, considering your mannerisms." Harsh. "As for your reading glasses, I'll need to have a word with my sister about that before it can be arranged. Until then, you'll just have to wait."

It's not like I can go anywhere anyway. With a wordless grumble, I kicked back my hooves and plopped myself back onto my bed, my eyes trailing once again to that infuriating logbook resting by my side, aching just to be flipped open. "Is it always like this down here?" I asked no one in particular, not even the princess standing outside my cell. "This four-walled world of sheer immense nothing? What else am I supposed to do here anyway? Do I just wait? Is this the game we're playing, just waiting?"

"As always, your intelligence precedes you," Princess Luna replied nevertheless, much to my chagrin. "All that is known will return to you in time. Until then, you must have patience, Doctor."

"You know how I feel about that, Your Highness," I snapped. "What are you doing down here anyway? Shouldn't you have better things to do? Raising the moon, for instance? Or lowering it? Or finding out if it's made of cheese?"

"I came to see the Doctor."

"And you have seen him, in all his imprisoned glory. Now what?"

"You tell me, Doctor." There was a flicker accompanying her smile now, scintillating across her veneer like the constellatory sparkles in her mane. "You're always the smartest one in the room, aren't you? Perhaps you may enlighten the princess on what she can do?"

Something about the way she said that irked me. Not the way that Princess Celestia would, of course not — she's objectively a lot more atrocious and irritating with her methods — but it sounded almost as if she knew what I wanted from her. Granted, I want a fat load of things from her that she certainly has a bargaining chip in — my freedom, for example — yet only one of them welcomed itself to the forefront of my head. One inconsequential, insubstantial question, ravaging my nerves as it seeks to be answered.

"You know my name," I finally got it out after a long period of strained, whimpering silence. "The name I used with my companions in private. Somehow, you know it."

"Turner, correct?"

I nodded, glowering. "Why?"

"Always sensitive with the names. Never with the faces, just the names. Words." Princess Luna laughed at that notion, yet the joy that usually came with it was absent. The sparkle in her eyes shimmered brighter, revealing itself to be a flame of anguish. She strode off to the side, what's left of her smile subsiding, revealing the veneer that many ponies would usually associate with her: the face of longing, of loss, of yearnings from a bygone age. Her gaze fell past mine, almost as if she's searching for something behind my pupils, albeit to no avail, if the soft sigh she gave was of any indication. "We have history between us, Doctor," she made her claim. "We had some good times, some bad ones as well. Can't have one without the other. Ultimately, as you have told me once, it is all time."

Ultimately, it is all time.

I'll admit, that sounded like something I would say just because it sounds cool.

"What am I to you?" I broached.

"Many things, to be honest, but none more so than the Doctor."

"You make it sound as if I'm not the Doctor you knew anymore."

"Because you aren't," she replied with damning certainty, shakily smiling still. "You're not the Doctor I knew. You're not the one that was there for me when I needed you most. You're not the one that taught me all I needed to know. You're not—" her smile faded suddenly, and for a moment, I thought I heard her cuss. "You know, there's... so many things that I wished to talk to you about, so many wonderful things that I wished to know, that I want to know, and yet, here we are. The both of us, waiting."

"Then why not just tell me what happened? Why not tell me why I'm stuck here?"

"I think I've indulged you enough for today."

I opened my mouth, only to close it again. Knowing Princess Luna, however much I would whine and complain wouldn't make a difference in the world, if her sister is anything to go by. With a parting nod, solemn as solemn can be, I was once again left alone, trapped in a box with only a book to entertain me. Thinking about it, you can pretty much say the same thing about a day of my life or two. Didn't have that poncy, pain-in-the-head pony magic though, so that's something new.

"We have history between us, Doctor."

Can't remember how many times I've heard that. No, seriously, I can't remember a thing. The way she said it, she certainly knew me, and rather well at that. Was she a companion once? Was she my first princess companion? Well, technically she's not the first princess on board the TARDIS, that's for sure— her sister beat her to it, for one. It's a little sad, really, when you put yourself in her horseshoes. Always the one overshadowed, always glossed over, that one, like fine print. Reminds me, you lot and fine print never go well together, and yet you're the ones who've invented it! You lot are irresponsibly messy with the littlest of things, even with your manners and etiquette and pish-posh.

Still, it's brilliant, isn't it? Think about it, Princess Luna as my companion? Who could've imagined it?

Who in their right mind could've imagined it?

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1008 AC, Third Fall, 8, 18:22:38

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"You better remember where we park the TARDIS, okay? Same time, same spot, Caramel. Again."

"I-I'll try."

"And Turner?" she turned to me, suddenly clenching a frown. Teasing frown, of course, but a frown all the same. "Go easy on us next time, please? As much as I like getting shot at, it'll be nice if we could just go somewhere quiet for a while."

"Well, there's always the library, isn't there? Always wanted to visit the library. Again."

A pinch of magic at my sides nearly made me keel over, with Caramel snickering, whether at my joke or at my flailing hooves stumbling for balance, I don't know, nor do I want to. "You know what I'm talking about," Twilight grumbled, shaking her head as she trotted out of the TARDIS doors, her smile returning to its former glory. "See you guys after school tomorrow!"

Best thing I could do was to give her a wave. Not even a word, just a wave. Oh, sure, laugh all you want! You lot think it's so easy, but you would do the same too if you've seen her smile, and boy, does she smile! Blimey, I could look at it for days on end and I would never ever be tired of it! Giggling to herself, Twilight Sparkle skipped out those doors and back home, leaving me here once again, alone in the TARDIS. Oh, and Caramel! Can't forget about good ol' Caramel!

"Now then," I declared, prancing back into my ship, whirring once I flipped a few switches. "To High Horn Gulch it is."

"R-Right," Caramel stuttered, holding onto a railing as the TARDIS lurched about once more. "So, uh, any chance you might take up Twilight on her request?"

"Probably... yeah, yeah, probably, yes." I glanced up from the buttons and switches. "Oh, but I was thinking before that—"

"Doctor."

"But there's this one star system that I've been meaning to get a closer look at for a while—"

"Doctor, please."

"Come on, it's not everyday you see something new, Caramel! A new star system! New planets, new lands, uncharted territory! It would be one hell of a whopper!"

"I... guess?"

"Oi, don't leave your enthusiasm behind, remember? Rule number sixty-eight. Or something, I might be rounding up, but still," I reminded sternly, hoof pointing at him. "Think about it, there could be anything out there! Anything! Could have pigs with two noses, or no nose, or it could be a nose with a pig instead! Or two pigs! Ehh~?! Walking nose! Ah, walking nose! With pigs! Ahhhh, that's something I've always wanted to see! Ooh, and they'd all be wallowing in an ocean— oh, a custard ocean, eh? Imagine it, the—the Custard Ocean... oh, now that's something I'd really, really have to see—"

"And Twilight?"

"...yeah, her, right." I paused momentarily, only to claw at my mane in frazzled frustration. "Aggghh, peace and quiet! Hate it, hate it, hate it! Love it to bits, no mistake there, everything's better when it's peace and quiet, but hate it nonetheless!"

"Well, you could always go and take a look first, can't you?" he suggested.

"I could, but where's the fun in that? What's the point of me going there if there isn't anyone around me to see and hear how smart I am?"

"Point taken," was Caramel's response, softly chuckling as he cantered towards the TARDIS doors. Now that I think about it, if peace and quiet had a face, it'll certainly look like our fellow farmer right here. Okay, I might be generalizing a little, but look at him! Nothing screams 'peace and quiet' more than a small-town purveyor of agriculture, don't you think? He's fascinating, really, the bumbling farmer of High Horn Gulch. He'd say otherwise, but then again, so would all my other companions, Twilight Sparkle included. Modesty isn't lacking in the Equestrian department, that's for sure. "So peace and quiet then?" he asked one last time.

"Not much else, is there?" I quipped, striding up to see him off. "Ooh, but I was thinking we could have a bit of both. Planet of Trampolines, that's a good place to start. Colorful place, nothing dangerous, yet really exciting in it's own right. Horrible parking conditions though, I'm afraid."

"I think that's alright. I mean, if Twilight's fine with it, I'm fine with it as well."

"Right," I muttered, not knowing what else to say. "So, tomorrow then."

"Yep. Tomorrow."

With an awkward nod, Caramel stepped out of the TARDIS doors, leaving me here once again, alone in the TARDIS. So really, nothing new when it comes to me then, mad pony with a box and all that. Still, I could've said something, couldn't I? I could've at least mentioned how great he would look with a suit on or something! With a seething grumble, I smacked myself on the bottom lip, before resorting to tugging at it menacingly. "Few more minutes, just keep him in here for a few minutes! Can't you at least blubber something out, you little— oh, now you're blubbering something, now you're doing it—"

"Doctor?"

"Babble! Yes, just— yes. babble, that's it! That's all you had to do, just babble! Blah, blah, blah! Bluh! Buh-buh! Bleeehhhh, blooooo—"

"Doctor!"

"—ooooh... ooooh~?"

Turning my gaze, Caramel was standing there at the doors of my TARDIS, eyes wide at the disconcerting sight that is the Doctor yanking and twisting at his lips. For a moment, neither of us speak, before he noticeably backed off. "Um, should I leave you alone and come back or—"

"No! Um, no, not— no, no, yesh, no." I gulped, before quickly letting go of my lips. Blinking, my gaze pranced about the corners of the TARDIS, my jaw clenching as I searched for the best way to put it. "It's not tomorrow yet."

"Huh?" Caramel blinked, before his eyes lit up as he chuckled sheepishly. "Oh, that! No, no, that's tomorrow, yeah, I remember that. The trampoline thing, that's tomorrow, that... I mean, I was supposed to ask you about something before I leave, but it, uh, slipped my mind, but I just remembered it a moment ago and since you're still here, I thought... well..." he scratched his mane. "You think it's alright if we could chat? Like, just a quick talk? My dad's off somewhere this week to sell some of the produce, so I thought maybe you could hang out at my place for a while and... yeah..."

I would've gawked, though I don't do gawking, that's not really my thing. Makes me look less of a Doctor and more of a companion. My hooves shimmied against each other, one of them beginning to reach out for a lever before the other quickly pulled it back, all with Caramel staring. "Ah," came the first word I uttered, followed by a few more seconds of silence. "Blubbering, okay. I think... I think I can do that."

"Okay... y-yeah, yeah, sure! We could blubber if we want, sure, why not. You, me, and good ol' blubbering."

A light-hearted chuckle left my lips, before I followed him out the TARDIS doors.

"Yep. Just some good ol' blubbering."

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1024 AC, ? Month, ? Day, ? h/min/s

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Migraine after migraine after migraine.

If there's one thing more frustrating than waking up to a migraine, it's the fact that the uh... let's call them experiences for now (note to self: think up a name for these things) that preceded them was always agonizingly short. I don't understand it, really. Letting information just... trickle? As opposed to letting it all rush in simultaneously? Is there some side-effect that I'm not aware about? I should have you lot know that the brain of a Time Lord isn't as susceptible to whatever whimsical, wishy-washy whammies that you lot might've accidentally invented.

Oh, wait, right, migraines, right.

I guess there must be a good enough reason that I'm taking in everything at a snail's pace and knowing how the royals are, there's a good enough reason that it's being withheld from me. At this point however, I don't really know whether it's for my good, or is it for the good of Equestria. Could be both, could be neither. No idea what the latter would entail however. Might be overthinking it a little too. Am I overthinking it a little? Or am I overthinking about the fact that I'm overthinking it a little? Hmmm, could be both, could be neither. Grah, I'll never figure it out at this rate!

Nevertheless, here I am, a mad pony trapped in a box. It's an okay box, to be honest. Very, very average. Nothing to complain about the amenities, though I do think the decor's a bit drab. Ooh, look at me, being another one of Canterlot's upstart snobs! Ooh, hear my opinion on how these drapes don't match with the wallpaper! Listen to all the adjectives I use to exacerbate this piece of toast that I don't quiet fancy yet ordered anyhow! Anyways, not much I can come up with to improve my homely prison cell. Probably— ooh, yes, ummmm... round things! Needs more round things, yes, that's it!

"Doctor?"

"Go away, I'm busy." Round things, yes. Maybe a few more gossamer bungalows on that corner there, yes. Get a few arachnids for company, liven up this place a little. Yes, hmm, yes, I could see now! Sure, they're not the usual kind of neighbors, but it's always refreshing to try something new, don't you think? Make some new friends! Who knows, I could be a best man at a fellow spider's wedding! Certainly wouldn't be the first time! Oh, even better: imagine the many juicy rumors of all of time and space we could gossip about, eh?

"Doctor?"

With a rough sigh, I turned around. "I said go away, I'm—"

Almost immediately, my voice was whisked away, leaving only a squeak to finish off my sentence, which really isn't the best way to end a sentence with, as far as I'm concerned. I could do nothing else but gawk at the pony standing outside my cell because really, when you see this pony, of all ponies, standing outside your cell with the knowledge you currently possess of your situation, there's really only one thing left to do. So I sat there, just... gawking and... not much else came to mind, really. Nothing else mattered any more than the very presence that had came to see me in my sorry state. Of all the ponies that I knew and have been acquainted with (so far), there was one that I'm absolutely certain that they should not see me like this.

Nevertheless, here he was, standing outside my jail cell.

Here he was, standing there, trying his best to smile.

Here he was, after such a long time.

The bumbling farmer of High Horn Gulch.

"Hey Doc."

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