An idea that just sort of came to me. Penny doesn't believe in that science fiction nonsense, but perhaps she should...

SPOILERS for Doctor Who series 6 episode 1 The Impossible Astronaut, do not read if you've not seen...
No major spoilers for The Big Bang Theory, but takes place around season 4, so you should probably have seen up into there.


Penny found her neighbors glued to the television when she stepped into Leonard and Sheldon's apartment; experience had taught her interruption during this sort of determination was unwise, and she regretted her entrance immediately.

Luckily she seemed to be largely ignored, if noticed at all. Leonard, Sheldon, Raj, and Howard seemed to have no interest in anything in the world outside of whatever was happening on the television. Curiously she allowed herself a glance at the screen; she vaguely recognized the characters from the hours of science fiction she was subjected to as Leonard's girlfriend. It seemed as if she just caught the end of the program. There was a gunshot, a couple of shouts. Then some redhead was staring a bit away from the camera, looking completely mortified…Penny moved her gaze to the guys as the credits began to roll.

Her eyes met with an amusing sight; they looked like they were dressed up for the circus. Sheldon had a laughable red fez atop his head, complete with a matching bow tie and suspenders, in addition to a tweed jacket slung over one shoulder. Leonard had a bow tie as well, but with a black jacket, a flute in one hand, and (of all things) plaid pants. Raj had on a yellow suit with a stick of celery on its lapel. Howard's outfit made her die inside, however: he looked like he'd eaten a rainbow and then dressed himself in his own vomit.

They seemed to detach themselves from the show as the credits came to a close—but wait! There's more! They instantly fazed out again as some sort of preview for the next episode came on. All Penny noticed were people that drew tally marks on themselves for no good reason, and spacemen. And really freaky alien thingies…

"Holy crap on a cracker," she mumbled as the preview ended, replaced by the logo of some production company. The four turned to face her, startled.

"How long have you been there?" Howard asked nervously. "Were you here for my Ood singing, because—that was all the sonic screwdrivers—"

"Thank God no, whatever that was," Penny assured him. "I just walked in now. But, um…"

"We're celebrating the return of Doctor Who with themed costumes, food, drink, and trivia questions," Sheldon stated in satisfaction, reaching out and plucking a card from a pile. "Penny, here's an easy one: which episode was the first to be named for a companion of the Doctor?" At Penny's blank expression, he unsympathetically rolled his eyes. "It's Rose, of course. Honestly, Leonard, how did you even establish a relationship with someone unaware of basic Whovian trivia?"

"She only watched a couple of episodes when I showed her the tenth Doctor," Leonard admitted. "I got her to watch The Eleventh Hour, but she said she didn't like that Tennant turned into an Easter Island statue—"

"Which coincidentally was brought up in this very episode," Raj said with a smile before looking vaguely at an empty shot glass and bringing it to his lips. "Ah, sonic screwdrivers…turning me from a Silent into a straight Captain Jack Harkness."

"All right, first point of order: I do not approve of the name Silent," Sheldon said. "Those things are not silent; they proved themselves very noisy creatures."

"But their presence was silent," Howard put in, shrugging. "They're forgotten the instant you look away."

"Howard, why are you dressed like a clown's breakfast?" Penny felt compelled to ask. Howard blushed.

"Stewart…wouldn't let me borrow his Tom Baker Doctor costume," he admitted sheepishly.

"Back to the point!" Sheldon exclaimed, never ready to lose an argument. "Amy looked away several times as she was taking a picture with her phone."

"Amy Farrah Fowler?" Penny asked in confusion.

Sheldon rolled his eyes. "Amy Pond, are you capable of following a simple conversation?"

"A sane conversation!" Penny exclaimed in her own defense.

Sheldon smiled in condescension. Oh poor, simple Penny, if you had any idea the complexities of the characters, plot twists, and story arcs throughout the course of Doctor Who."

Penny crossed her arms. "Look, I'm focused on real life." She enunciated so they could hear every letter. "I came over here to have a snack, but if you're gonna be so mean then I'll just have to take some chips and go."

"You came to get chips?" Leonard asked. "You could've just said."

"Oh, sure," she replied, crossing the room and digging in their cupboards. "While you were drooling over Doctor Whatever, and those crappy made-up alien monsters?" She returned to the door with a bag of chips and narrowed her eyes on them darkly. "You might believe in that spacy stuff, but I don't."

With that she opened the door and stepped into the hall. There, before her, stood a creature with massive hands and a face that looked like it was melted. Her eyes widened as it raised a hand and she saw a blue spark appear; hastily she grasped at the knob behind her and stepped back into the guys' apartment with a shriek of terror.

"Penny?" Leonard asked in concern, getting to his feet. "What's wrong?"

Penny furrowed her brow. "What do you mean?" she asked in confusion.


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XOXO and my heart forever,
Bella