The Twelfth Doctor


Prologue


The Doctor lay in the middle of a field of grains, tugging at something around his thick neck. The first several buttons of his shirt had burst open, exposing a bit of his bare chest to the bright light of the three suns overhead.

"What is this awful thing," the Doctor grunted, causing the fabric of the strap of decorative fabric he once loved so much to snap, "And why is it choking me?" He gasped a breath of air as it came away from his flesh, and examined it closely, only to raise an eyebrow. He moved his hand around his body, feeling it for anything out of the ordinary.

"Funny, you're the one who's always said that 'bow ties are cool'," said a voice from nearby, just as he had decided that his body was in order. The Doctor heard the sounds of grain being crushed beneath the feet of whoever was watching him. It was mostly quiet, however, save for his breathing and her footsteps. It was certainly a her, he concluded, as the voice's owner blacked out the suns above him.

"Pond," he breathed, lifting his arm toward her face. He stroked the hair out from before her brown eyes.

"You may have a different head and a different body, but you won't be forgetting this body any time soon," she grinned and offered him a hand up from the ground. Amy touched his nose with the tip of her index finger. "You're a bit taller, you know that?"

"Am I a – " the Doctor stammered a little, looking at the lovely treat of a girl before him. "Am I a – " He grabbed his hair and pointed at her. "Am I, you know... a ginger?"

She smiled at him, then smacked him on the shoulder and, as she did so, leaned up on him to whisper into his ear, letting her nails dig into the skin of his back just a little.

"How shall I say this," she teased, pressing her lips to his neck once and again. "You make a very fine ginger," as she laughed, tracing her hands up the buttons of his shirt as she did so. She began to move her lips to his, then paused; a sudden thought caused her to look at him with great concern. "You've regenerated," she said in a hushed voice. "You are regenerating... why?" She corrected, noting the same faint glow emanating from around his hands as at Lake Silencio.

"I was hoping you would tell me that," said the Doctor. "I can't seem to remember anything since I arrived here. That was," he scratched his head and looked at the hair on the back of his wrist for a moment, one eye squinted shut, "nine months ago." A look of surprise came over the Doctor; he raised his hand and pointed a finger into the air.

"Nine months?" Amy looked at the Doctor in disbelief, "That can't be possible."

"Nine months in Vega IX's time. Roughly twenty-three minutes and fifteen seconds in your time. Or is it Earth time? Time isn't really anyone's is it?"

"Roughly?" Amy looked at him with her eyebrow raised.

"I may have rounded up by a few milliseconds," he gestured playfully with his hand and began wading through the grain fields. "Come on, Pond. We've got a child to save."

Amy trudged after him, taking care to follow in his footsteps to avoid letting stalks of candywheat sneak up her trousers. As she made to ask about the child, a stinging feeling on her wrist caught her attention. She squeaked aloud in pain, fidgeting with the vortex manipulator on her wrist, grumbling as it made a loud and annoying screech when she tried to adjust it.

"This thing is terribly frustrating," she huffed, "and extremely uncomfortable."

"I see you've got hold of Jack's old vortex manipulator," he said slyly, not even turning around to look at the piece of technology strapped to his friend's arm.

"Jack?" Amy looked at the Doctor in confusion. "No, it said its name was 'the Face of Boe'," she paused in a very dramatic fashion, then raised her hands up into the air. "It was... I dunno... some sort of massive head in a tank with ooze." She made a special emphasis on the word ooze, as if it gave her words extra meaning.

The Doctor didn't respond.

"Who's Jack?" Amy pushed, trying to get what information she could out of him. They were friends, but she found that she knew so incredibly little about him. He was hundreds of years older than her, but she found him entertaining and appealing all the same.

"Jack," he paused, looking at the blue police box before him, "is an old friend of mine." He smiled and motioned toward the TARDIS. He snapped his fingers and the door to the TARDIS swung open, revealing the machinery within.

"It's been far too long," Amy said happily, stepping inside what had become something of a second home for her only a decade before. She'd had a daughter with her late husband, Rory Williams, and had lost her daughter to the Silence only to find her again, madly in love with the same man that had nearly stolen her heart on the night before her wedding.

Her eyes came alight as she watched the Doctor flip switches and turn nobs, connect this cable to that socket, and generally do all manner of nonsensical things to make the TARDIS run the way he needed it to. Amy was used to all the spectacle, but still found it amusing to watch him grin proudly and waggle his eyebrows in pride.

"Now," he said, his mind in deep thought, "show me what I need to know." He gave the visual display above the console a quick tap to snap it out of its static blur. As a picture came into focus, he heard the familiar voice of very old acquaintance.

"Hello, Doctor."