Author's Note: Here's a random Doctor Who one-shot that I wanted to write. I hope you all enjoy it!


An Argument Over Bow Ties

The Doctor strolled quietly along the winding trail. It was a nice, autumn day and the Doctor was enjoying every moment of it.

"Been a while since I've visited Scotland. Must be around...late 1991 or so. The air tastes funny," he said as he strolled along. Suddenly, he came to a stop. Standing a few feet away was none other than the TARDIS. "That's weird, I'm sure I parked the TARDIS back there." The Doctor looked back the way he came and then turned back to the TARDIS in front of him. "Unless...oh, brilliant! Late 1991. Cool, autumn day. The faint scent of cherry pie. It looks like I'm about to have an unexpected encounter in more ways than one!" A smile appeared on the Doctor's face as he walked past the TARDIS. "I do love it when the universe takes a peek at my Christmas list!" Then, he saw him, standing at the edge of a particular, green hill. It was a man around the Doctor's height. He was wearing a black jacket and a green shirt. He had a short, prim haircut and a cold, seemingly-emotionless expression. "And there he is. The Doctor."

The Doctor casually walked up towards his past self and stood next to him. They stood in silence for a few moments before the past Doctor turned to face his future regeneration.

"Can I help you?" asked the 9th Doctor.

"No. I'm fine. Just out for an afternoon stroll," replied the 11th Doctor.

"It's late morning."

"Is it? My mistake. One tends to forget the time of day while lost in their own thoughts."

"You must have been in some deep thoughts then."

"Nah, I was just thinking about why the air smells like cherry pie."

"There's a town not too far from here. I would think it safe to assume that's where the smell is coming from."

"Oh, of course I knew about the town! I was just wondering if you did."

"Why?"

"Just curious. Seeing who knows what. Well enough about my minor thoughts, what about you? You seem to be troubled about something." The 9th Doctor remained silent for a few seconds.

"It's not something I'd prefer to talk about at the moment."

"Obviously. I think that much was obvious with you standing here all grim and depressed."

"Then why ask the question?"

"Well, why not ask the question?"

"I guess that's one way to look at things."

"Of course it is, and there's many more ways to look at that. You know that better than anyone, aside from me."

"What's that supposed to mean?"

"Well I would only think it obvious that a man such as yourself is able to see things in more than one way."

"Who are you?"

"A passerby. I noticed that you were in need of some help."

"I'm in no need of help."

"Are you now? Are you really? I would think so. Coming off a war and everything like that." The 9th Doctor fell silent as he turned to face the 11th.

"What did you just say?"

"I was asking you if you really weren't in need of help."

"No, not that. About the war."

"So you were listening to my ramblings! I love it when people listen to my ramblings! I love it almost as much as when people tell me that my bow tie is cool, which it is. Bow ties are cool."

"No they're not."

"Come again?"

"Bow ties aren't cool."

"Says you."

"Damn right, says me. I've worn them in the past many times and I've grown a slight distaste for them."

"You'll come to like them again."

"I certainly hope not. You look like you're choking on cloth. That's what bow ties are, little nooses."

"Thoughts can act like nooses too. Grief and guilt also. You, my friend, are suffering from a very special kind of guilt: survivor's guilt."

"What?"

"Of all the people to survive the war, you constantly wonder why it was you. Why couldn't it have been someone else?"

"What are you going on about?"

"Wars...nasty things. Don't like getting caught up in them and yet I always seem to. The last great one I was in was quite a doozy. Time wasn't really on my side during that one." The 11th Doctor smiled as the 9th Doctor fell silent once more.

"Who are you?"

"I told you. I'm a passerby who saw that you were in need of assistance."

"I'm in no need of assistance!" The 9th Doctor began walking back in the direction of his TARDIS.

"Really, now? After all the pain you went through in the Last Great Time War?" The 9th Doctor stopped. He turned around to face the stranger before him.

"What do you know of the Last Great Time War?!"

"Plenty. Enough to know that you're not in a right state at the moment."

"Nobody knows of the Last Great Time War but me, the Doctor!"

"Some do. Some have. Some will. Some forget and some continue to know. They continue to know the greatest war that ever happened, and yet never happened."

"Who are you?!"

"Just a passerby."

"No. You're more than that! I know it!"

"Yes, you do. And you'll come to understand on your own quite shortly."

"What?" The 11th Doctor suddenly looked at his watch.

"Oh, will you look at the time! I must be off. But, before I go, might I recommend that you go to a shore called Henrik's in London on March 4, 2005. There's a nasty group of Autons causing a ruckus over there as well as a blonde who may be in need of assistance." The 11th Doctor then took off in a run. He ran past his past self and down the pathway.

"Wait! Come back here!" the 9th Doctor yelled as he ran after the bow tie-wearing stranger. "Who are you?!" The 11th Doctor couldn't help but laugh with excitement as he ran down the pathway. He eventually came across his own TARDIS. With a snap of his fingers the doors flew open. He then ran through, closed, and locked the doors just before his past self arrived. The 9th Doctor froze as he came across the second TARDIS. "But...the TARDIS was just back there. Unless-" The TARDIS then began giving off its signature sound.

Just as the TARDIS disappeared, the 9th Doctor could just make out the 11th Doctor shouting, "Geronimo!"

The 9th Doctor couldn't help but smile as he slowly put the pieces together.

"Fantastic!" he exclaimed as he made his way back to his own TARDIS. The Doctor walked in silence until he reached the interior of his TARDIS. "Let's see. What did he say? Henrik's in London on March 4, 2005. Autons and a blonde in need. Sounds promising." He began working the TARDIS's controls when he noticed a bow tie sitting on the console. He picked it up. It was a simple, red bow tie. After taking a few glances at it, he tossed it aside. "Nah. Not right now." The TARDIS began to take off. "Geronimo, huh? Sounds like it could work. Maybe it'll grow on me...like bow ties."

The Doctor let out a loud sigh as the TARDIS took off towards Henrik's in London on March 4, 2005.

The End