The Doctor eyed his singed hat with dismay, and waved it about. “Did you see that?”
“I did,” said Benny, keeping well back under the over-hanging rock they had retreated to for shelter in case another bolt of lightning hit was flung at either of them. “You know, when most people say the gods are angry, it tends to be a metaphor. Occasionally even a myth. The Gideli seem to be more than a bit literal on the subject.”
The Doctor heaved a sigh and put the saddened remains of his panama back on his head. “Which is intriguing, I have to admit. What do you say — shall we take a trip up to the local Olympus and pay them a visit?”
“If I said no, is there the slightest chance you’d take any notice of me?”
“Benny!” The Doctor sounded hurt. “Of course I would take notice.”
“You’d just go up there anyway without me and who knows where that would end? They already hate you and they haven’t even had the annoyance of meeting you yet.”
He gave her a smile. “A fairly correct summary.”
“In that case, there’s nothing I’d love more than to go visiting a bunch of trigger happy deities with you. Let’s hope that brolly of yours is thunderbolt proof.”
Dear Diary, I am still here (and in one piece). That is all.
Frak that, it’s not all. Please remind me next time I tag along after the Doctor like a gormless sheep that I have a TARDIS key and can make full and free use of it (if said TARDIS is not currently on another planet/buried underground/locked away by yet another galaxy-conquering megalomaniac or scared but armed primitive who wants to know what it does and why it makes that awful moaning wheezing sound) if the Doctor’s suggestions for the day take a more than usually risky and stupid turn.
Picture the Divine Palace of Artreria, a towering, golden and crystalline structure situated on something that looked (to my ignorant and uninformed eyes) like an actual cloud. (The Doctor had some long explanation for it, but I was too busy gaping to pick up on the finer details of fake cloud manufacture of the 62nd Century.) Picture again yours truly and the git formerly known as the Doctor striding up to it — or, no, picture us bouncing up to it (N.B. Fake clouds, not easy to navigate by foot) and knocking on the door, which is answered by an Adonis. Maybe your actual Adonis, it’s hard to be sure. Now picture Our Heroes, enquiring as to whether the gods have thought about investing in life insurance lately. At least, that was the Doctor’s opening gambit; it was left to me to blather on about premiums, small print, and special terms for cloud-based castles.
The main consolation is that the Doctor came off much worse than I did and would probably now be a charmed lump of ex-Mysterious Gallifreyan if it hadn’t been for the fact that at that moment the Divine Palace exploded, leaving us floating back to the ground on separate fragments of ersatz-cloud, like angels, only without harps, dignity, or wings (alas), and, in the Doctor’s case, respectable amounts of non-frazzled clothing and smoke trailing out behind him. Yes, dear Diary, as you have no doubt guessed, at that point Ace caught up with the beings masquerading as the Gideli gods in typically explosive fashion.
The only problem now is that the Doctor is holed up somewhere deep in the TARDIS, apparently in mourning for his hat. (He has at least sixteen others, but that one was his favourite, so he says.) And if you believe that, dear Diary, you deserve to get dropped in the middle of whatever devious plan the git is actually hatching.