Circle of Stone

Chapter One - Missing Adventures

He lay on the floor, wishing he'd just died instead. This was his worst regeneration yet. If this was what his new head felt like then, quite frankly, he wanted a new one. Through eyes that let in far too much light, he saw a figure hunched over him. The hair looked unkempt, the eyes bleary. The Doctor only just recognised him.

"Rory? Rory, my good man, you look terrible." Then he remembered his current plight, and this new face he had. He thought the last one had been oddly-proportioned but this one didn't seem to fit at all. "Tell me, what do I look like?"

"Worse than me," Rory replied, in a voice that seemed far too loud.

The Doctor put his hands over his ears. "You'll have to excuse me, these ears, far more sensitive than my last ones. " He hoped they weren't gigantic like that other time. "What colour's my hair?"

"Brown," Rory said. "The same as always."

"No change there then. What about my eyes?"

"Red," Rory said. "What did you expect after last night?"

"Red? That can't be right? What kind of crazy face is this?"

"It's your kind of crazy face, Doctor."

Best not to think about his new face, besides there were other questions to ask. "What happened to me? I can't remember much, just crawling back to the Tardis."

"I can't remember much either," said Rory. "It was New Year's Eve and we were in Glasgow."

"Did someone deep fry me? Is that how I died?"

Rory looked at him strangely. "You didn't die, Doctor. It just feels like you did. Haven't you had a hangover before?"

"Nonsense, Rory. I don't get hangovers. Drink doesn't affect me; I've drank bottles of the finest 18th century French wine and still been able to outwit automatons."

"We were in a drinking contest with Amy," explained Rory. "That's the last I remember."

"Amy? Where's Amy?" The Doctor said.

"She was fine, it didn't seem to affect her," said Rory. "She's got hollow legs, and long ones at that."

"That's good. Glad she survived at least," said The Doctor, still convinced he was dead. After all, the probability of Rory being right and him being wrong tended to be zero.

"Oh wait, we left her, snuck out on her," said Rory, burying his face in his hands. "Don't you remember?"

Suddenly a whole heap of memories leapt back into The Doctor's head. Oh no, looked like Rory was right about his not dying after all, still, there was a first time for everything. "Oh, I remember now," he said, waving a finger at Rory. "I was going forward twelve months, wanted to wish her Happy New Year twice. Besides, she should be used to me abandoning her by now."

"Twelve months?"

"Only twelve months," The Doctor said, leaping to his feet, and staggering toward the console. "For me, that's early." He started the process of materialisation and cringed at the loud wheezing sound the Tardis made. "Besides, what could have happened in twelve months?"

At that point, the Tardis doors were flung open, and an angry Amy Pond strode into the Tardis. In her arms were two babies, one dressed as a Roman Legionnaire, the other wearing a fez.

"Okay... kids! This is where things get complicated."