Author's Notes:
Written for Settiai as part of the Classic Who Ficathon.

Hypothermia


“This,” the Doctor observed, “is all your fault.” He pulled his silk-lined opera cloak closer to his body. “Androgum. Of all the villainous races in the galaxy you had to throw your lot in with, you chose Androgum.”

The Master shrugged. He didn't look cold at all, the blackguard. “They promised me the use of their transmat. Unlike you, I do hope to get off this benighted planet one day. Besides, they were perfectly content to restrict themselves to transient humans I found for them until you stormed in and started ranting about involving the Time Lords.”

The Doctor made a face. “You're morally bankrupt. I don't know why I'm even talking to you.”

The Master smiled. “I would think it's because you know the only way for us to get out of this freezer before we're made into Roast Time Lord ala Orange is for the two of us to work together.”

The Doctor had come up with a perfectly scathing retort to that, but he never got a chance to use it as fate chose that moment for the freezer door to be knocked in. “Brigadier!” the Doctor said gratefully, springing to his feet. “You have no idea how grateful I am to see you.”

“Thank Sergeant Benton and Miss Grant,” the Brigadier said gruffy. “They were the ones that followed your car here. Now if you're quite all right...”

“Oh, I am,” the Doctor reassured him.

“Splendid,” said the Brigadier. He gestured to the soldier behind him. “Zbrigniev, take the Master into custody. I'm going back to the drawing room–one of those chaps with the red eyeshadow just attacked Captain Yates with a knife and fork.”

~*~*~*

Drowning


Breathe, breathe.

Pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump.

Breathe, breathe.


It was the Doctor's own fault of course. Well no, it wasn't. Not completely. He'd stood up in their rowboat, the alien idiot, arms spread wide to make some sort of grand gesture, but he hadn't got more than two words of his proclamation out before the giant frog thing had poked its head out of the water–Sarah had screamed, Harry had grabbed her, the Doctor had stumbled–and then, of course, they were in the drink.

Pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump.

It could have been worse, Harry reminded himself. The lake could have been made out of acid, or-- or-- pea soup or something. It was an alien lake. They were on an alien planet with alien creatures and alien monsters and alien people and why in the world had he gone in the police box when Sarah had invited him?

Because it had been Sarah Jane Smith and he'd been working up the nerve to ask her to the cinema for months, of course.

Breath, breathe.

Pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump, pump.


They needed the Doctor, blast it. Not just to get them home, but to negotiate with the weird four-armed aliens they'd found themselves among and hopefully to get rid of the frog thing, if Harry had any say in it. And, well, Harry had grown a little fond of the silly alien, to tell the truth.

Breathe, breathe–

There was an wet, spluttering sound and suddenly the Doctor was coughing and wheezing, but alive, thank God. “Why, Harry,” the Doctor said, grinning in spite of it all. “I never knew you felt that way for me.”

“Oh, Doctor,” Sarah said, rushing forward. “We weren't sure you were going to make it.”

“Hello, Sarah Jane,” said the Doctor. He blinked. “Me, die? That would be an altogether too frivolous thing to do. Why, I've barely lived. I'm still on my first millenium, you know.”

Sarah laughed, but it was a tight, guarded laugh. She'd really been worried about the silly old chap, hadn't she?

The Doctor was busy looking around. “Well,” he said brightly. “We're on the right side of the lake, at least. Let's go find the Raagdal Tribe and then on to Scotland and the Brigadier!”

~*~*~

Poison


There was a loud crash coming from the TARDIS kitchen, followed by all-too-loud shouting that could only belong to Tegan and Turlough. The Doctor sighed and rubbed his eyes. Fixing the temporal regulator would have to wait.

“Is everything all right?” he asked, sticking his head through the doorway. He glanced down. “Oh. The soup.”

“Yes,” said Turlough, through clenched teeth. “The soup. Somebody thought it would look much better down on the floor.”

“You were trying to poison us,” Tegan snarled. She picked up a cannister from the table. “I found him dumping this... this... blue stuff right into the pot.”

“It's a spice mix!” Turlough protested. “I got it from an old man at the Venusian bazaar!”

“Oh right,” said Tegan. “Was this before or after we were attacked by four-armed ninjas?”

The Doctor groaned. “Let me deal with this,” he said. “Why don't you both go and clean yourselves up and when you get back I'll have sandwiches for all three of us.”

Tegan glared at Turlough. Turlough glared at Tegan.

“Fine.”

“Fine.”

“Lovely,” the Doctor said under his breath once they were gone. He picked up the cannister. “Angh's Patented Powdered Buck-U-Uppo: Known the Galaxy Over For Its Good Taste And Healthy Vitamins,” he read, before turning it around. “Ingredients: Powdered Nutmeg, Slijj Powder, Jikli Powder, Powdered Dried Xellosian Bongfruit... Powdered Aspirin?”

The Doctor set the cannister down gingerly. Aspirin. Well. “Thank you, Tegan,” he whispered, but of course she wasn't there to hear.

~*~*~

Exposure


The Doctor's wrists hurt. Rope burn, he thought mournfully. His shoulders felt no better. As for the rest of him...well, he was dangling half-naked from a cliff face. It was a wonder he was still conscious and one he attributed wholly to his Gallifreyan physiology.

He'd learnt not to call up to see how Evelyn was doing negotiating after the first time he tried it and the natives had thrown unripe bongfruits at him. Very hard unripe bongfruits and expertly thrown–the chief sport of the population of Xellos V was vaguely like quidditch without broomsticks, bludgers, or snitch. (The players swung from tree to tree with one set of arms while passing, carrying and throwing the balls with other.)

He didn't understand it! The last time he'd been on Xellos V, the Xellosians had been very friendly! He'd even negotiated a truce between two warring tribes out of the very goodness of his heart. (Well, and they'd been holding his TARDIS for ransom.) They'd given him a nice shiny medal on a string of beads and Sarah and Harry feather headdresses and there was something very wrong with the universe, wasn't there? Had seemed that way for a while.

Finally–it seemed like an age later, although the Doctor was fairly certain that was just his perception and not the actual flow of time–they started to haul him up. “Well?” he said when he was safe on firm ground. “What was it this time?”

“One of your future selves again, I'm afraid,” said Evelyn. “He must have stopped by since you last were here. They said he looked rather like a tree-stoat. You know, Doctor, I'm starting to think it's all the same one.”

The Doctor scowled. “So am I.”

“Well,” said Evelyn, “if we leave the planet right now and promise never to come back, they'll kindly refrain from executing you. I'm afraid, however, that your blue coat will pretty much have to be left for dead.”

“Ah well,” said the Doctor optimistically. “I was thinking of taking the old one out of mothballs anyway.”

~*~*~

Burning At The Stake


“It's customary for the condemned to give a few last words at this conjuncture,” the witchfinder sergeant informed him. “Most take the time to curse the Good Lord and his works.”

“What, all of them?” the Doctor asked. He shook his head. “Give me a moment to think of mine.”

A moment stretched into two and then into three. The witchfinder and his soldiers looked impatient. The torch of the one on the right was dipping dangerously low. “Time's up, devil spawn,” the witchfinder said grimly.

That was when the vestry exploded. “Oh, now I remember!” the Doctor said, laughing. “Always have an Ace up your sleeves!”

The witchfinder ignored him in favor of running back toward the church. The soldier on the right looked at him, then at the Doctor. “I'm on to you, demon,” he said. “You used your magic, so you could sneak away. Well, it ain't going to work on me.”

“Too bad,” said the soldier on the left, and he rammed the unlit end of his torch in the other soldier's stomach. The soldier on the right stumbled backwards...

...right into the arms of the woman who'd definitely not been there a minute ago. “Sleep tight, scumbag,” said Ace, before bringing her rucksack down, hard, on the crown of his head. She let him fall to the ground

“You all right, Hex?” she called over to the remaining solder, who'd taken his helmet off in the meantime.

“Yeah, I'm all right.” Another explosion came from the direction of the church. Hex winced. “Oh my God, McShane, how many charges did you set?”

Ace smirked. “Wouldn't you like to know?” She sauntered over to the Doctor. “So I'm up your sleeve, am I?”

“Among other places, yes,” said the Doctor agreeably. “Now if you'd excuse me, I do seem to be a bit tied up at the moment.”

“Noticed that,” said Ace, who was digging in her jacket pocket. She came up with a pocket knife. “Right, then,” she said. “Let's get you down, Professor, and then back to the TARDIS. Our work here is done.”