A/N: My rather pathetic attempt at humor. Just the scene in The Impossible Astronaut made me wonder what the 'cage really thought of River Song. This particular story – like some of my others – has very little dialogue, and a lot of weird introspectiveness. It's a nice break from character driven original fiction where all my stupid characters do is talk. I really do dislike dialogue.
Spoilers: River-ness. Anything from Silence in the Library up through Day of the Moon is fair game.
Disclaimer: This is not brilliant. Authentic Doctor Who is brilliant. This must not be authentic Doctor Who.
The Stormcage's Lament
The day actually started out fairly normal. There were no attempts at a mass breakout. No major public relation hassles. Just a normal day at the Stormcage Detention Facility. And yet, it was this day that would ever go down in Stormcage history as the worst thing that ever happened to the high security containment area. Because it was the day when She arrived. A She who would become so infamous among the guards and administrators that even first day recruits were warned about Her. Because not only did mention of Her in the pronoun sense merit italics, but it was also always capitalized. Not that such punctuation was always needed. Everyone knew who She was.
She arrived on the regularly scheduled prison transport, looking entirely liked a shocked young woman, barely out of girlhood, who had no idea what was happening. The teddy bear really did help that image. No one else of any importance arrived that day: a rogue Sitherleen who happened to interfere with a criminal investigation and ended up infringing himself; two Aokol-Human hybrids charged with the destruction of New Beijing; and a hardened human criminal named Bobfred Flatts. But She stood out the most, simply because of the lost, innocent, terrified look about Her.
There was an awful lot of pity given to that girl in the first couple of days. No one seemed to understand how She warranted detainment in the highest security prison of all times. No one wanted to believe the reports of the destruction She had caused. The guards gave Her extra rations, they placed Her in the best of cells, and treated Her with respect. And She still never let go of the teddy bear. And She never said a word.
After a couple of weeks, the special treatment began to slide and She became more and more reclusive, hiding in the very corner of Her cell. With the teddy bear. A number of the guards had named the teddy bear The Horrifying Prince of Doom, just the make up for the fact that She was so unimpressive. The Horrifying Prince of Doom was a small, chocolate colored bear, no larger than Her head. He tended to sit on Her knee and they would stare at each other for hours on end. Speculation abounded about the most mysterious of all of the Stormcage's inmates.
About a month into Her imprisonment, He showed up. As there were multiple plain 'He's' in Stormcage history, He was referred to as, "He." "He? Which He?" "The-mad-crazy-looking-one-with-the-omnipotent-Stick." The Mad One With the Stick was something totally abnormal for the Stormcage guards. Even beyond Her and the Horrifying Prince of Doom. The Mad One With the Stick showed up one relatively normal afternoon with a thermos of tea in one hand and a strange looking stick in the others. The Stormcage quickly learned to fear the Stick. Because the Stick could do almost anything and everything. The Mad One With The Stick strode through the hallways of the Stormcage until he reached Her cell.
The cameras caught everything on tape, like they always. He pranced up to Her cell and unlocked every single security system they had on the cell. The guards were going crazy, racing after him, almost panicked. The very fact that he had waltzed into the Stormcage, obviously intentionally, was probably enough to warrant an investigation into his arrest. The Mad One With the Stick stepped inside her cell and grinned. Grinned! And he locked the door behind him. The guards were pretty much going crazy right about then.
She simply looked up at him, appearing completely un-estonished. The Horrifying Prince of Doom sat on her knee and peered up at the Mad One With the Stick with his beady, black eyes. Then She spoke. It was so astonishing that those watching the tape needed to fast forward the footage and play it again. "Hello, Sweetie." Her voice still sounded dull and sad, much like Her overall body language, but it was... She really could speak!
"Stormcage," said the Mad One With the Stick. He was laughing. "Fine pickle you've worked yourself into." He sat down on the bench beside Her, still laughing.
She glared at him. "Spoilers." The two of them shared a snicker.
"Oh, I know." He smirked. At this point in the film, all present usually started talking very, very, very fast while trying to decipher the meaning behind behind their relatively simple conversation. The best psychiatrist were called in to decipher the meaning behind such seemingly normal small talk, but no one could figure either of the subjects out. While the psychiatrists deliberated, the guards tried to access the cell. Apparently, the Mad One With the Stick had both locked the two of them into the cell and all the guards out of the cell. It was a rather annoying turn of events for the administrators.
For the next three days She and the Mad One With the Stick stayed in her cell. The omnipotent Stick blew out the cameras for most of the time, along with the microphones and listening devices. Most of the psychiatrists didn't want to think about what was happening and most of the guards took a perverse pleasure in discussing this latest twist in Her story. And then they were gone. A first day recruit just happened to be wandering down the hallway outside of Her cell.
The door was hanging open and no one was inside. Predictably, chaos ensued. It wasn't until a senior guard named O'Conner went through Her cell with a fine toothed comb and found The Horrifying Prince of Doom with a note stuck between his little paws. O'Conner unwound the note and stared at it with surprise. It was... well... almost flirty. She was being flirty, and She was never this abrupt and forward. All the note said was "I shall be back. Take care of the Prince for me." There the softest impression of lipstick pressed at the bottom of the note. The Stormcage quickly, quickly, quickly learned to fear the Lipstick. The Lipstick was dangerous.
Two days and a massive hassle of paperwork later, She showed up just inside the Stormcage gates with a blue diary and a multicolored pen clutched in Her hands. No one said a word. The psychiatrists were astonished. Who in the universe would ever escape from the highest security facility in the world and then come back? She was becoming the most fascinating case in the universe. They were scared of Her now. Because She had escaped. And no one had ever escaped from the Stormcage. They threw Her back in the cell with The Horrifying Prince of Doom.
For the next couple of days, the psychiatrists watched as She scribbled away with the multicolored pen for forty-two hours straight. And it was exactly forty-two hours. No one knew why. But it seemed as if She was timing things exactly to forty-two hours. Why forty-two? What significance did that particular number have in Her life? The psychiatrists discussed that number for eighty-four hours without making any sense at all. That's the problem with psychiatrists. They over-analyze things. Psychiatrists. What a... special... kind of people.
After forty-two hours, She put the little blue book in a drawer underneath her bed and settled in the corner with The Horrifying Prince of Doom. And She then proceeded to confuse the Stormcage like crazy.
The next time She had escaped, She had used the Lipstick and slipped past each and everyone of the guards. The administrators were not happy. The guards insisted that the administrators should try and guard Her before they passed judgement. And so, when She returned, the jail administrators sat outside her cell with high tech guns and wary faces. She simply smirked at them. Three days after being placed on watch duty, one of the administrators ended up pressing the trigger on his gun and shooting a fellow beaurocratic pencil pusher. Of course, this caused a heap of paper for the jailors and the regular guards returned to their regular shifts.
After a few more, very successful, escapes, the psychiatrists suggested that having female guards might cut down on the ease of which She escaped whenever She had an errand to run. The idea was attempted, and it failed, almost as spectacularly as having administrators guard a prisoner. The Stormcage could simply not keep Her imprisoned. And so, they began to slowly stop caring. Sure, each time a new head was installed at the top of the administrative process, they would want to know what was happening with Her and why no one seemed to care, but after three weeks on the job, even new head wardens understood the jist of things. Each time She turned up missing, the paperwork wouldn't be filed and the proper authorities would not be alerted. Eventually, it got to the point where no one but the psychiatrists paid any attention to Her comings and Her goings.
The Mad One With the Stick continued to show up on occasion, and his name slowly became the Mad-Cocky-Crazy-Insane-Protective-One-With-the-Magic-Blue-Box-and-Omnipotent-Stick-and-the-Ever-Present-Hero-Complex. Comings. Goings. The psychiatrists eventually decided that She viewed the Stormcage more as a home, than a prison. As typical to most psychiatrists, they were completely wrong, not understanding the concept of self-sacrificial system may have been unorthodox, but it worked for them. At least, until the chruch decided that they should provide some of the worst criminals in human history a chance to redeem themselves.
The parole programs started with Bobfred Flatts, who escaped the Stormcage by faking good behavior, helping the church solve a crime by planting a false lead, and then solving the mystery for them. He then proceeded to go on a killing streak of close to a hundred humans and aliens. For Her the parole program mostly ended in trouble. The Church developed a personal grudge against her due to the death of at least sixteen bishops and cardinals and other church-ish types. She even killed Pope John the LXI, indirectly, but the Church blamed Her anyways. That got Her sentence extended and the parole programs ended for awhile. She was held personally responsible for the deforestation on Proxima Nine, due to the shear amount of paperwork caused by Her antiqies.
And then, one day, She did not return. For a week, they waited. Some of the psychiatrists even started checking obituaries, hoping they might discover the key to Her entire existance. But they never succeeded, because She never came back. After three weeks, the head warden at the time demanded that they clean out Her cell and prepare it for another inmate. The guards refused. The administrators, wary as ever of Her cell, tentatively cleaned out the cell, throwing Her belongings in storage in the hope that She might, one day, return. However, the guards commandeered the Horrifying Prince of Doom, and they gave the teddy bear the seat of honor in the soliders' mess. Forever and always, the little bear looked down on them, as a reminder of the strangest prisoner the Stormcage ever had.
And – as time progressed in a strictly linear and rather boring fashion – She became a legend; immortalized by a teddy bear and a universe-wide record for breaking out of the jail the most times while serving a life sentence in the Stormcage.