Mild slash (Ten/Simm!Master), set between The Sound of Drums and Last of the Time Lords but no real spoilers.

Summary: The Master takes the Doctor out for dinner.

Disclaimer: don't own.

A/N: Finally – black humour! I was going to do it in The Multifunctional Timey-Wimey Detector but never got round to it. (Also, black humour suits the Master better, don't you think?) Anyway, this is the first time I wrote a fic based on a prompt ('dinner in a foreign restaurant') from Petty Insanity, who also helped with brainstorming the title and summary. Thank you. :D Even though I didn't really take your suggestions this time…

Four is Company

"Where are we?"

"Where else could we be?" the Master returned enigmatically, then helped the Doctor to his feet and steadied him. While he liked him old, he did love making him young once in a while because his face was so much more expressive. Plus, it left him a little out of breath and shaky for a while and that was always fun.

"What city?" he asked, scanning the rubble for any answers.

The Master scoffed. "Doesn't have to be a city."

"What country then?"

"So many questions, Doctor!" he said condescendingly. "But you'll find out soon enough." He then led him to a rundown, dusty building and propelled him inside.

The space within had been cleared of debris, and on the raised, half-crumbled platform was a small round table draped in a scarlet cloth. In the centre an ornate golden candelabrum cast ghostly, flickering shadows off the cold grey walls and tickled the intricate patterns in the gold-framed chairs inset with red cushions. Smiling proudly, the Master guided him over, sat him down and took the chair opposite him while the Doctor shifted uncomfortably in his seat and eyed the cutlery like it was about to leap up and eat him. Finally he looked up and warily asked, "What's this all about?"

"A date," the Master said happily and spread his patterned napkin on his lap.

"A what?"

He pouted admirably, if he might say so himself. "Don't you like it?"

The Doctor studied him. "What are you up to?" he asked.

"Must I always be up to something?" The Doctor gave him a dark look. "Oh, if you insist. But really, you take things far too seriously."

"Do I have any reason not to?"

"You're not my prisoner, Doctor."

Just then four Toclafane flew in.

"Oh, maybe just a bit then. But that's not the point! The point is, let's eat!"

Said Toclafanes flew closer, carrying two plates of food in pairs. They carefully deposited them in front of the two Time Lords and left quietly again.

"Go on then."

Without breaking eye contact, the Doctor picked up a fork hesitantly and prodded the meat in front of him. "You eat first," he said.

"Oh for Rassilon's sake, it's not poisoned!"

"And I'm supposed to believe that?"

"Well come on! I mean, who poisons their boyfriend on their first date?"

"You would."

"But I haven't."

He pushed the plate towards him. "Prove it."

"Fine!" He cut himself a corner of the meat, popped it into his mouth, chewed, swallowed and licked his lips clean in plain sight for the Doctor to see. "There, happy now?" He pushed the plate back.

The Doctor prodded the meat again and leaned down to take a careful lick around the edges.

"Oh hurry up. We haven't got all day and I know you're starving."

"Thanks to you," the Doctor said acidly.

"Why, you're welcome," he returned.

Finally, albeit cautiously but at long last, the Doctor took a bite. "It tastes like pork," he said, chewing slowly.

"Yup." He began to tuck into his own meal happily.

"But it's not pork."


The Doctor stopped eating. "What is it?"

He grinned, drawing out the moment and anticipating what was to come.


The Doctor spat his mouthful back out.

"Oh, the look on your face! You should've seen it!" the Master said gleefully into the prolonged silence. "Absolutely horrified," he rubbed it in. And rather adorable too. Not like he'd ever say that aloud. But just to let him know in the roundabout way, he leaned over the table before the Doctor could respond and kissed the surprise off his face.

After all, what would a date be otherwise?

Please review!