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Doctor Who: Children of Mephistopheles

by SubSubLibrarian


“Hello?” I asked, picking up the phone and putting it to my ear. I had just been washing dishes and had nearly missed the call by drying my hands with a towel on the opposite side of the kitchen.

“It’s time,” was all the familiar voice on the other end of the call said.

“Time?” I said, confused. “Time for what?

“Look outside,” it said excitedly.

I stepped across the room to the nearest window and immediately had to shield my eyes. A few layers of snow covered the ground and everything was white, except for a big blue box in the middle of the yard. I hung up the phone absentmindedly, opened the door, and leapt outside. I stood on the doorstep for a few seconds, smiling to myself, and I probably would have kept doing it, but I was shaken from my trance by the creaking sound of a door. I turned slightly to smile at the wonderful bow tied man to my left.

“Look who it is!” he yelled. “Ellie, you are fantastic, as always.” Then he said in a slightly quieter tone, “Are you ready?”

“Ready?” I said, my smile fading. “Oh, I, um, I have to go to school in the morning.”

“That’s hours away, and you’ll be back in no time! Five seconds,” he told me, tapping on his wrist.

“You said that last time and it was three weeks. My parents thought I ran away,” I said in distress.

“Oh. Yeah,” he said sadly. Then his face brightened. “I’ll make sure we get here on time. The Tardis has been very accurate lately.”

“Well, maybe,” I said hesitantly.

“That’s my girl!” he said happily, opening the door of the blue box and letting me walk in first. As I gazed around the familiar room the Doctor jumped to the controls. “Where are we going?”

“Well, last time I said the Middle Ages, but we got stuck on that yacht in Imperial Russia…”

“The Middle Ages it is,” the Doctor said, pulling levers, pushing buttons, and glancing at a screen every once in a while. Finally he stopped and the Tardis came to a standstill. He looked back at the screen one more time. “Aha! The Middle Ages!”

He ran to the door and swung it back open, swiveling around to look at me ecstatically. “What do you want to do first?”

“Um… wander?” I said uncertainly. I walked to the door and stepped into the sunshine. Wow. It was the Middle Ages. The Doctor stepped out after me, shutting the door behind him.

We began to walk down the alleyway. As we neared the street, we heard booing and a few interesting curses. It seemed as though everyone was making angry noises and gestures. It didn’t take long to figure out why. A few solemn ladies and gentlemen passed by on horses. At the end of their procession there were several pack horses weighed down by chests and sacks. There was a slight jingling noise and suddenly the whole crowd went silent in anticipation.

Somewhere near the middle of the crowd, a person raised their right hand, then chaos took over. Masked men in camouflaged clothing sprung from the alleyways on brown and gray horses. The crowd cheered and the guards surrounding the nobles and their treasure failed to contain them. The nobles were dragged off of their horses and only the white and black horses were allowed to wander away from the fight in the street. Some nobles managed to catch a roaming horse and flee from the village, but their gold, clothing, and other valuable belongings were taken by the masked men, who then rode back through the village with the stolen goods. All they left behind were a couple of sacks of gold for the villagers to split amongst themselves.

The Doctor and I pursued them and discovered a forest not far beyond the city limits. We entered the forest, following the fresh sets of hoof prints. They disappeared in the middle of a small clearing. We tried to keep moving forward, but two men intercepted us at the edge of the clearing.

“Why do you come here?” asked the first.

“The man that raised his hand, he is your leader?” asked the Doctor. “Robin Hood?”

The men’s faces hardened. The second man asked, “and what would a strange fellow, like yerself, want with Robin Hood?”

“I was thinking I could help him actually. He has problems too, doesn’t he?”

“You mean with the Children?” the first man asked fearfully.

“Is there something wrong with the children?” asked the Doctor.

“It depends which children yer talking about, sir.”

“I think I can handle it from here, thank you Wein, Will,” said another man, stepping from the foliage.

“It’s Robin Hood,” I said in amazement.

The man gave me a funny look, then gave my clothes a funnier one. I looked down, realizing I had forgotten to change in the Tardis. I was the first woman to ever wear pants.

“Hello,” I said, waving.

He raised his eyebrows and turned to the Doctor, who also received a strange look. His clothes weren’t exactly Middle Ages. Robin Hood shook his head, then said, “You can help us?”

“I believe so. Where are your children?” the Doctor said excitedly.

Robin Hood, laughed. “If I had children like that, I would have killed them myself.”

We looked at him, horrified. He saw our expressions and hurried to reassure us. “They aren’t actually children. We just call them Children of Mephistopheles.”

“One of the seven chief demons of Medieval demonology. Cold, scoffing, relentless friend,” said the Doctor.

A man ran into the clearing and said, “They are coming,” then ran back the way he came. Robin motioned to us to follow him and he followed the other man.

The demon like creatures chased us through the forest without stopping for breath, which was the only thing keeping me going. They gave up eventually, but by that time I felt like I was dying. My lungs felt like they were going to collapse. We took a break in a big clearing with all of Robin’s men.

“Any good news?” he asked them. No one answered. “Well, any bad news then?”

One of the men stepped forward reluctantly. “The King was coming back from the Crusades and he was… taken.”

“Taken?” asked Robin. “By the Children?”

“We think so, yes.”

Robin Hood looked down, and for a moment all was silent. Then the Doctor stood and Robin Hood looked up at him, making eye contact.

“You can save him,” said the Doctor. “We just need to go to church first.”

“And what? Pray for our lives?” asked Robin incredulously.

“What is the one thing that can kill demons?” asked the Doctor.

Robin looked at him in amazement. “Of course! Holy water. Klaus, bring the horses.”

A tall man in camouflaged outfit like the others stepped forward with three gray horses and held them while we jumped onto their backs. He let go and we rode off to the chapel in the village. There, we got a bucket of holy water and filled all three of our canteens with it. Then we leapt back onto our horses and rode to the beach of the English Channel. Where we stole a row boat and paddled across the water to the opposite shore. We then borrowed horses in and rode straight to Austria, to the castle he was being held in. The castle was deserted, but we heard groans from the dungeons, where we found King Richard chained to a wall. After he was unchained, the King drifted out of consciousness and we had to carry him outside and onto a horse. Then we rode back to the channel.

Our journey took twenty-five very uncomfortable days. We took short breaks to sleep and very short breaks to eat and feed and water the horses. King Richard was pretty delirious, but he was slowly regaining his strength. It would take another day to row across the channel and back into the country and another day to make it back to his castle.

The King woke up on the boat and sort of freaked out.

“Who are you?” he asked.

“I’m the Doctor,” said the Doctor heavily as he pushed an oar through the water.

“Oh, really?” said Robin Hood in a similar tone. “How silly of me, I never asked your name. I’m Robin Hood.”

“Doctor Who?” asked the King suspiciously.

“Oh, just the Doctor,” I answered, then smiled and said, “I’m Ellie, short for Gabrielle. We saved your life.”

“You are a woman,” said the King. I just nodded, confused. “You are wearing breeches.”

Before I could respond, he sat up and grabbed one of the canteens. He loosened the lid quickly and chugged the water inside.

“That might not have been a good-” I said, half of my sentence broken off by the King’s spit.

“What is this?” he demanded.

“Holy water,” I said casually.

“Have any of you tasted holy water?” he asked curiously.

“I have,” said the Doctor. “Bit of a mishap in Transylvania. They thought I was a vampire.”

“Then you can understand why I never want to taste it again. Do you happen to have any human water on board?”

We looked at each other. None of us had thought about bringing normal water. We had just stopped at rivers and streams on the way. Suddenly we were all thirsty. Robin Hood looked ahead.

“We’re close to shore,” he said, “so we could make it by sunset.”

The sun was already setting. I hoped he was right, because I could only guess what might be waiting for us on the beach.

Robin was off by a few minutes. We made it to shore in the dark, just after the sun had finished setting. Getting the King had been easy. The ideal attack would have taken place when we were all tired, sore, hungry, and thirsty. I assumed that’s why they attacked us as soon as we left the boat. One of the creatures flipped the boat over and the canteens went under. I jumped into the water to save them. It was hard to swim very deep, but I made it just as the canteens had started going back up.

When I broke the surface with the canteens in hand I was several yards away from shore. The demons couldn’t smell me yet, so I was safe for the time being. I quietly swam back to the beach, where the Doctor, Robin Hood, and even King Richard, were giving it all they had. All they had was obviously not enough, but the canteens I had were. The scene reminded me of the third Harry Potter movie and book, when Harry is fighting off the dementors and is losing, but the future Harry saves him and Sirius. That’s sort of what happened.

As I neared the beach, the demons stopped what they were doing and started sniffing around. One got really close to me, just inches away, before I flicked some holy water at it. The demons heard the last cry of their brother and charged in for revenge. The first two rows got sprayed before the others realized they couldn’t win this. They flew off into the night and I would never see them again.

Our last order of business was to get the King back to his castle. Robin Hood assured us he would take care of his leader, so the Doctor and I were free to go.

Once we were in the Tardis, the Doctor asked me the usual question. “Where are we going?”

“Home,” was all I said. He gave me a funny look, but he pulled the levers and pushed the buttons and looked at his screen in silence.

It was daytime when I stepped outside. I walked into the Living Room through the front door and across to the kitchen. The sink was empty. I looked up at the clock and ran out the door, grabbing my backpack on the way.

“Doctor,” I said through gritted teeth. I was late for school.


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Mon May 06, 2019 5:53 pm
seekingthetruth wrote a review...



IF YOU ARE GOING TO MOCK DOCTOR WHO IN THIS WAY LET IT BE KNOWN TO YOU THIS WAS THE .. BEST VERSION OF A PARODY OF DOCTOR WHO I HAVE EVER READ. you don't overcomplicate the plot you use big constructive words. you even mention the tardis and its detail. but I am just wondering which doctor did you write this for because it would really be a great matt smith doctor because he always ended up going to the worng place. its reall y special and should be considered as a script. But one criticism would be I don't think anyone would like the idea of having a school kid as a companion the show my get complaints because it might encourage kidnapping.


overall a really great attempt


9.9/10 would recommend to the BBC.






Thanks! It actually was for Matt Smith. He's my favorite. But you're right. Political correctness is in my way. But what about Amy? She was like eleven. I mean, he didn't actually take her anywhere until she was a lot older, but still.



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Mon May 06, 2019 5:43 pm
Stori wrote a review...



Hello again, SubSub! Did you know there's a Doctor Who role-playing game? There is; it's published by Cubicle 7. :-) Perhaps you could write a supplement based on this piece, adding details about the Children and so on.

Somewhere near the middle of the crowd, a person raised their right hand, then chaos took over.


Obviously, Robin Hood isn't just 'a person'! Is he dressed in his typical Lincoln green, or disguised as a peasant? Has he dyed his hair? In short, we need more description!

I'm sure you know this, but there's an episode- "Robot of Sherwood"- featuring Robin and the Twelfth Doctor. It wouldn't hurt to view it, and then make the Robin here a tad bit more like him. The good folk at Continuity will thank you! ;-)

Fun fact: Robin Hood's full title was "Robin o' the Hood" on account of his distinctive headgear. He was a nobleman before turning thief; it's possible that King Richard restored his land and title once King John's hash was settled.

By chance, did those "deleted scenes" include the other famous outlaws- Will Scarlet, Little John and so forth? What about Robin's archenemies, the Sheriff and Guy of Gisbourne? With a little research, this could be that rare thing: a Doctor Who story that sticks close to its source material. Or, you know, the Children could be aliens from another dimension! You decide.

In short, this piece could be a brilliant work of fanfiction. Right now it's more of a summary.

Hoping this helps,
Stori

P.S: I created a new Time Lord called the Chronicler who gets stranded in modern-day NYC. Let me know if you'd like to read about his adventures!






Thnaks for the tips and the information. I actually wrote this story before any of the twelfth doctor's seasons came out, so it's definitely not continuous.



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Tue May 23, 2017 1:52 pm
ExOmelas wrote a review...



Hello fellow Whovian! Nit-picks first:

I had just been washing dishes and had nearly missed the call by drying my hands with a towel on the opposite side of the kitchen.

This is a bit awkward phrasing. (as was that sentence but nvm). It's a bit too logical, not really how humans think. Something like "I nearly missed the call as I rushed over from the other side of the room where I'd been drying my hands" would be smoother. I'll just describe something as "awkward" from now on and if you don't get what I mean just ask :)

absentmindedly, opened the door, and leapt outside

Seems a little inconsistent. First this seems to be the most ordinary thing in the world, then your narrator is super excited.

I turned slightly to smile at the wonderful bow tied man to my left.

YASSSSS. Excellent choice of Doctor.

My parents thought I ran away,” I said in distress.

This is a bit tell-y, which breaks the submersion for me. Something like "...ran away!" I exclaimed" would be less jarring.

Wow. It was the Middle Ages.

Some description here would be a good idea.

Robin looked at him in amazement. “Of course! Holy water.

It seems unlike that this wouldn't have occurred to the villagers by now, especially since 13th century society literally revolved around religion.

Overall:

(Warning: this is quite harsh, but I promise I'm nice at the end :P )

Character: I have a fairly good idea of Ellie at the start. Kind of exasperated but also enjoying the Doctor's company. I also know from experience what Matt Smith's Doctor is like. But beyond that you haven't included many moments for character development. I think more of this could make this a more enjoyable read. You know, squee moments.

Setting: I think we need a lot more description of the setting. Obviously this doesn't normally happen in Doctor Who because you can see it, but it's really necessary here to help me picture a setting I'm not an expert in.

Plot: This all seems a bit easy, and I'm also not sure why the Doctor was necessary. Like I said, medieval folks would 100% have known to try holy water. My flatmate also just noted that why would the Doctor believe that holy water means anything. Does the Doctor believe in God?

Flow: I think this would benefit a lot from being slowed down. A lot of the time this was like event-then-event-then-event-then-event without a lot of time for the reader to react to the events, or the characters to react to the events, which means it just becomes a list of things that happened. It sort of seems like a blue-print for an episode to pitch to Steven Moffat.

All of that being said, I think this would be a good episode to pitch. If you make some changes to the narrative, I think this story has potential to be an enjoyable read.






Thanks for the review. Your comments really make sense to me and I agree. Most of them I'd already noticed. I actually wrote this for a school assignment when we got to choose a narrative topic. It was supposed to be only 1-2 pages long and I was a little too determined to write about the Doctor. As you can see, I didn't take much time for description and character development because the story was already double the allowed length. I will revise that when I edit. Thanks for cluing me in on the holy water thing and the awkward parts by the way! I completely overlooked it.



ExOmelas says...


no worries :)



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Tue May 23, 2017 11:02 am
Dracula wrote a review...



Hey there, SubSubLibrarian! When I saw this was a Doctor Who fanfic, I had to read it! :D My reviewing style is a little different. I like to type down my thoughts as I read through your writing, instead of going through everything at the end. Hopefully that can be of some help.

“It’s time,” was all the familiar voice on the other end of the call said.
I have a good and a bad for this. The good is that I think this is a great way to begin the short story. It gets me excited, thinking 'time for what?'! My suggestion is that you add some description of the voice so I know who it is. If I didn't watch Doctor Who religiously, I wouldn't guess it was the Doctor, and even then... it could've been any character. even Winston Churchill!

I hung up the phone absentmindedly, opened the door, and leapt outside.
Absentmindedly is not needed. Her actions alone tell me how she's feeling/acting.

“Well, maybe,” I said hesitantly.
I notice you use a lot of adverbs after your dialogue tags. You don't need to! Your dialogue is written well enough that I'm already imagining them speaking like this without the extra words, which only distract me from what's happening.

“You mean with the Children?” the first man asked fearfully.
“Is there something wrong with the children?” asked the Doctor.
“It depends which children yer talking about, sir.”

Oh my goodness! You did suck a good job at introducing the conflict. It felt just like a proper episode of Doctor Who.

The demon like creatures chased us through the forest without stopping for breath, which was the only thing keeping me going.
What do the demons look like? This is definitely an important piece of info that should be included. I guess you'll touch on this later, but it should be there from the start, as soon as they appear.

The castle was deserted, but we heard groans from the dungeons, where we found King Richard chained to a wall. After he was unchained, the King drifted out of consciousness and we had to carry him outside and onto a horse.
Surely it wasn't that easy? Didn't anyone try to stop them? In the future, if you feel like turning this into a longer, perhaps novel-length fanfiction, you should absolutely expand on these middle scenes. It currently feels like the plot is missing a lot of conflict.

I have,” said the Doctor. “Bit of a mishap in Transylvania. They thought I was a vampire.”
I like this bit, it's a very typical thing for Eleven to say. :)

“Doctor,” I said through gritted teeth. I was late for school.
Hahaha this is an awesome ending! After all that adventure, her next priority is to get to school on time. I suppose the Doctor will have to get her there in the TARDIS.

I think you have a really cool plot. The story follows an arc and is interesting. It just needs to be expanded more, as some scenes are lacking depth and detail. Like I said before, this could be a mini-novel, if you ever wanted to add to it. But as a quick fanfic read, I enjoyed it. :D






Thanks! Yeah, I had a limited length and I really wanted to write a Doctor Who fanfic, so I ended up having to remove a lot of detail. I had to shorten it to 2 pages (failed miserably by the way; it's about four), so I had to pick and choose what to keep and what to erase. I like your comment about how I use too many adverbs in my dialogue because I can see exactly what you mean. That's like everything I write! Thanks for the tip. I'm definitely going to think about that more. I just focus on the dialogue too much and whether the readers will be able to see my characters talking. I shouldn't. Who cares about them anyway? Only joking.
Anyway, thanks again for the review!



Dracula says...


You're welcome! :D




Veni, vidi, scripsi ~ I came, I saw, I wrote
— steampowered