Short Trips and Side Steps
How many lives has the Doctor had? Perhaps more than you think…
Follow the Doctor and his companions as they take short trips around the universe – perhaps to a Wild West overrun with dinosaurs, to a land where robot rabbits roam, or a planet where the Doctor must marry or die – and then step sideways into other universes – worlds full of song and dance; planets made entirely of sweets; lands of movie monsters; places where the Doctor as we know him may never have existed at all…
The Longest Story in the World by Paul Magrs 1st Doctor and Susan
A young woman, ordered on pain of death to entertain the Caliph and his court with a story, tells a tale of an old man and his adopted grand-daughter, who live in a world where fantasy is forbidden. Nevertheless, the grand-daughter tells stories of their future, claiming that The old man will invent a fabulous machine to take them away from here, and will travel through time and space, growing younger as the years pass by, fighting evil, and becoming a hero. The old man does not believe her, and fears that her tales will attract attention — and indeed, one day he returns to his home to find the guards waiting for them. The tale ends on a cliffhanger, and will resume the next night; so long as the storyteller keeps the Caliph entertained, her life will be spared.
Time-Placement: If anywhere, this goes before 100,000 BC.
A Town Called Eternity by Lance Parkin and Mark Clapham 5th Doctor and Peri
The Doctor and Peri arrive in the town of Eternity, California, in the 1880s. There, Peri meets an apparently young man named Josh who claims to be over 100 years old; his youth was restored by an elixir which the salesman claims came from this town. Josh takes Peri to meet his friends the Browns, who may be her ancestors — and Peri is taken aback to find that Iziah Brown, a somewhat liberal thinker, has six wives. Meanwhile, the Doctor is mistaken for the visiting Dr Sebastian Rowley, who has been called to Eternity to investigate the death of the former Sheriff — who was apparently maulted by a dinosaur. He meets Sarah Brown, who took a cast of the deinonychus footprint, but before he can investigate further he is arrested by the new Sheriff, the Master. Realising that Sarah may be Peri’s ancestor, the Master shoots her dead, and hypnotises the townsfolk into believing that The Doctor did it. As the Master sets off to deal with Peri, a lynch mob hangs the Doctor, but their bloodlust remains unsatisfied and they set off to deal with the godless Brown clan as well.
Iziah tells Josh that he’s finally found the fountain of youth, and leads him to a cave filled with dinosaur fossils where a column of water is flowing upwards out of the ground. The Master arrives, and reveals to Peri that he is wearing a false fleshmask over a horribly burned body; he was nearly killed by the fires of Sarn, and has come here in search of a cure. The water here is affected by a temporal anomaly caused by a disruption to causality that took place in California in the early 21st century; bathing in it will restore his youth and health. Fearing the full effects of the stream, he fills a bucket and prepares to douse himself with it, but Peri attacks him and the water spills over the fossils — restoring them to life. Peri and the others flee as the reconstituted velociraptors tear into the Master’s hypnotised posse, but when they return to the Brown home they find an angry lynch mob on the way…
The Doctor arrives, having used his respiratory bypass system to survive hanging, and convinces the others to act as bizarrely as possible, thus shocking the townspeople out of their mass hysteria. The Master arrives, having bathed in the waters and restored himself to health, and tries to set the raptors on the townspeople. The Doctor reluctantly shoots him in the chest, and Josh ties a lasso to the Master, ropes a velociraptor and sends it running out into the desert, taking the Master with it. The dinosaurs soon die, having been mutated by the unstable temporal anomaly, and the Doctor, deciding that The fountain is too dangerous, blows up the cavern.
Time-Placement: Peri recalls the Doctor taking her to Mars and to Gelsandor, which puts this after Red Dawn and The Ultimate Treasure (in that order).
Special Occasions: 1. The Not-So-Sinister Sponge by Gareth Roberts and Clayton Hickman 4th Doctor, Romana II and K9
The TARDIS materialises on a planet made entirely out of confectionary. K9 appears to be in a somewhat peevish mood, and as he explores, the Doctor and Romana check their pocket calendars and realise that today is K9’s birthday. Romana thus takes the TARDIS to the planet Barastabon to purchase a sponge cake from the Masterbakers, pausing only to save the Universe on the way. Upon her return, however, she discovers that The trip through the Time Vortex in the telepathic TARDIS, and its arrival on a planet made entirely of candy, has caused the cake to develop sentience. The Doctor, Romana and K9 therefore set the cake free to populate the planet with a new, intelligent life form.
Time-Placement: There are no references to other adventures, but this story is presumably set close by Gareth Roberts’ other Fourth Doctor stories.
Nothing At The End of the Lane by Daniel O’Mahony 1st Doctor, Susan, Ian and Barbara
Barbara Wright, a disturbed young teacher at Coal Hill School, occasionally suffers from schizophrenic episodes and hallucinations. Aware that her students mock her behind her back, she loses her temper when her student Susan hands in a paper with the prices given in decimal currency, assuming that this is a deliberate taunt. Realising that this was an honest mistake, she tries to apologise and offers to tutor Susan privately, but Susan flies into a panic, insisting that her grandfather doesn’t like strangers. Upset, Barbara gets Susan’s home address from deputy headmaster Kint and goes around in person, but finds 76 Totters’ Lane to be an empty junkyard. Unsure how much of this she has imagined, and plagued by recurring visions of monsters and a London in flames, she continues to suffer from her attacks — or “episodes” — and experiences a foul taste in her mouth. Kint warns her that The board of governers is not comfortable with her appointment, and advises her to start being more friendly and open. She therefore invites her friend and fellow teacher Ian Chesterton to dinner, and as she relaxes she tells him of her dreams and fears, particularly her fear of the new bombs being developed which kill people but leave buildings standing, and her feelings that sometimes she is on a different world. That night, she dreams that her television is talking to her, showing her swirling howlaround patterns and talking of adventures in time and space…
The next day, inspired, she tells Ian about her trouble with Susan, and he agrees to go to the junkyard with her. They wait for Susan to enter, but when they follow her in she appears to have vanished. Barbara believes she hears movement in a padlocked strongbox, but before she can investigate, a hostile old man appears and tries to drive them away. His words are confusing and cryptic, and Barbara, who is beginning to feel terribly ill, starts to believe that she imagined the whole thing. But when Ian insists upon fetching a policeman, the old man strikes him down with a picture frame and nearly beats him to death. Barbara momentarily loses consciousness when the old man attacks her as well, and experiences another episode — the strangest yet — in which she appears to have been travelling through time and space with Ian, Susan, and Susan’s grandfather, the Doctor…
Her fellow travellers have just rescued her from a creature from a world where time-travel has been ruled impossible, a creature which attached itself to her mouth and gave her bizarre and terrible dreams as it tried to kill her. Her friends believe that They have saved her, but as she recovers, she realises that a part of the creature is still alive within her… and awakens back in the junkyard. The old man has dropped the key to the strongbox, but Barbara is too late; he has indeed locked Susan in a space too small for her and she has already suffocated. The old man attacks Barbara, trying to kill her, but Barbara grabs a rusting spear from a junked fence and defends herself, killing him instead. With her attacker’s death, the sickness seems to go from her head as well, and as she leaves to fetch a policeman she sees a police box standing in the fog, as if waiting for her. Inside, she knows she will find the help she needs.
Time-Placement: Either Barbara’s journeys with the Doctor are all a psychotic fantasy, or the bulk of this story is a dream induced by an alien creature which attacked her on another world. If the latter then Ian and Barbara have been travelling with the Doctor for long enough to have befriended him. There are no other reference points.
Countdown to TV Action by Gary Russell 3rd Doctor Who
Doctor Who is sent to the village of Haylock-on-Sea to investigate the disappearance of a film crew at an archaeological dig. The population of the town has been replaced by hypnotised actors, and the dig appears deserted apart from the frightened young Timmy. Timmy’s father, the star of The Squire of Crampton, was visiting the dig when it was opened, and a strange moss began to grow on the equipment. The trees began to move by themselves, and the archaeologists and film crew all walked into the dig — and only TV scientist Jeremiah Scratch came out, holding a globe filled with the sentient moss. Doctor Who and Timmy return to town but are captured by Scratch, whose new alien ally, a Klepton Parasite, has promised to use his power to destroy all television, and force people to return to books and museums for educational entertainment. But when Scratch sees the zombified townspeople he realises that The Klepton Parasite has tricked him, and that it in fact intends to use television to hypnotise the population of Earth and allow its people to invade. Seeing the error of his ways, he destroys the alien hypno-ray and frees the villagers, who accompany Doctor Who and Timmy to the dig and use defoliant spray to destroy the Klepton Parasite and its walking trees.
Time-Placement: This story takes place between the Third Doctor comic strips Zeron Invasion and The Deadly Choice.
The Queen of Eros by Trevor Baxendale 8th Doctor and Sam
The TARDIS materialises in the palace of Asheya, Queen of Eros, an absolute monarch in a world where people can die at her merest whim. The Doctor stands against her and refuses to let her kill Sam simply for speaking out of turn, and Asheya — at first amused, then intrigued and pleasantly disturbed to find someone who isn’t frightened of her — agrees to let Sam live as long as the Doctor obeys her. Realising that she has found an equal at last, she tells the Doctor that her followers may not bear children until she consummates a royal marriage, and that she has chosen him as her mate. He plays along with her, seeking a chance to escape, but as they spend time together Asheya comes to understand his perspective and sees the brutality of her world for what it is. Her jealous Royal Advisor, Zoleon, tries to kill the Doctor and challenges him to mortal combat, but when it appears that The Doctor is about to lose, Asheya kills Zoleon herself, saving the Dotor’s life. The Doctor agrees to marry her, thus freeing her subjects to bear children once again — and Asheya then returns the Doctor’s TARDIS, telling him that she will work to change her planet’s ways. The Doctor departs with Sam, never really understanding that Asheya had given him his freedom because she truly did love him.
Time-Placement: There are no reference points here, but Sam’s youthful behaviour implies that this takes place before her separation from the Doctor in Longest Day.
The Android Maker of Calderon IV by Miche Doherty 4th Doctor and Sarah
A bitter old man on Calderon IV, his dreams of a technocratic dictatorship thwarted by the Third Doctor, has spent the past five years painstakingly building a perfect android double of his enemy. Satisfied at last, he uses a recall device to summon the Doctor back to his planet, intending to have his android kill the Doctor, replace him, and then assassinate the members of the Praesidium. But all of his hopes are dashed once again when the TARDIS materialises in the village market and the Fourth Doctor steps out…
Time-Placement: Sarah recalls being menaced by cowled figures and prepared for sacrifice, which implies that this takes place after The Masque of Mandragora.
Continuity Note: Since the natives recognise Sarah when she and the Doctor arrive, the Third Doctor must have visited Calderon IV originally at some point between The Time Warrior and Planet of the Spiders.
Revenants by Peter Anghelides Future Doctor
The Doctor and Guin arrive on the Schrödinger Institute, a research station in deep space, to investigate a temporal anomaly. The temporal scientist Tasdevin is apparently conducting an experminent in perpetual motion, but when the Doctor and Guin try to speak with him they find that They are invisible and intangible — and that They cannot interact with any of the objects in the room until someone else has already done so. Tasdevin’s fellow scientists, realising that he is up to something, try to stop him from operating his machinery, but fail — and the sequence of events then starts to play all over again. The Doctor realises that They are caught in a temporal echo, the result of Tasdevin’s experiment having failed; the real Tasdevin is living out the rest of his life elsewhere, leaving a ghostly replica behind. The Doctor and Guin study the scientists’ research notes and listen to their conversations, and piece together that The others have been bought out by Galaxtricity, which fears that Tasdevin’s experiment will put them out of business if he succeeds in creating a source of perpetual energy. Realising that his work was being sabotaged, the bitter Tasdevin attempted to divert the course of his research to give himself immortality by looping his own lifetime in on itself, but has failed. The Doctor must wait for Tasdevin to finish working on his control box before he can correct it, and with only seconds to go, he manages to rewire it and break the echo. He and Guin then return to the TARDIS, knowing that The station will cease to exist once they have departed.
Time-Placement: This story features the future Doctor from the short story Good Companions, and his companion, Guinevere Winchester.
Please Shut the Gate by Stephen Lock 2nd Doctor, Jamie, and Zoe
The TARDIS materialises on Mars in December 1999, and the Doctor emerges to find a campsite set up and abandoned. He realises that he is responsible; his previous incarnation was forced to abandon the equipment when the TARDIS’ lateral drift compensators nearly caused it to vanish without him. Realising that They have only minutes to go, the Doctor, Jamie and Zoe try to clean up the remains of the campsite, but are too late; before they can depart, the Mars Polar Lander arrives, crashes right into the TARDIS roof, and is damaged beyond repair.
Time-Placement: Jamie refers to the Ice Warriors, but Zoe doesn’t seem to react; however, the fact that he expects to meet them again suggests that this takes place after The Seeds of Death.
Turnabout is Fair Play by Graeme Burk 6th Doctor and Peri
Peri awakens after a sudden explosion in the TARDIS console room, to find that she is now inhabiting the Doctor’s body. Her own footprints lead away from the TARDIS to a set of caves in the distance, but when she attempts to follow them she is captured by the Volnexians, natives of this world who are under the domination of the evil Javaman. The Javaman has used his mind control device, the Dorganator, to draw the Doctor here in order to force the secrets of time travel out of him — and he refuses to believe that he has captured Peri in the Doctor’s body. Peri tries bluffing with as much technobabble as she can invent, but the Javaman realises she’s talking nonsense and powers up the Dorganator. She finds a firecracker in the Doctor’s pocket and throws it At The Dorganator — which explodes, freeing the Volnexians and apparently killing the Javaman. Peri sets off back to the TARDIS, but on the way she is transported back to her own body. When the Doctor arrives, he explains that The Dorgantor interfaced with the TARDIS telepathic circuits and switched their minds — and that while Peri was distracting the Javaman, the Doctor, in her body, sabotaged the Dorganator.
Time-Placement: Peri refers to the Rassilon Imprimature, which would set this after The Two Doctors. The Doctor also refers to Davros, but Peri does not react to the name and may or may not know who this is.
Special Occasions: 2. Do You Love Anyone Enough? by Norman Ashby 4th Doctor and Romana II
At the end of the Universe and the end of Time, as matter and space itself ceases to exist, the Doctor gives Romana his last Rolo.
Time-Placement: See Special Occasions 4.
The House on Oldark Moor by Justin Richards Peter Cushing as Doctor Who
Doctor Who and his friends have escaped from the Romans in the year 64 AD and are still trying to return home. Instead, Tardis takes them to the fogbound Oldark Moor, where they find a sleepwalking woman named Veronica and take her back to her home. Her husband, Count Tarkin, thanks them for their help and offers them a place to stay for the night. In the middle of the night, Susan hears movement in the attic, and she and Ian find that The manservant has been throttled to death. Doctor Who investigates and finds that Tarkin has apparently been locked in the attic by an intruder. Ian is unable to break the door down, and Doctor Who has Veronica take him to her husband’s laboratory, hoping to find an axe. Tarkin finds them there, and when they explain whAt They are doing he claims that The man in the attic is his insane brother. The brother breaks out of the attic thanks to Ian, and confronts Tarkin, claiming that The Count is not his brother but his creation, and that he murdered the butler when the butler learned the truth. The clearly delusional man attacks Tarkin, and as they fight, Veronica gets in the way and falls against the fireplace, striking her head and apparently dying. Ian’s attempts to intervene start a fire which spread rapidly through the room, and the others are forced to flee as Tarkin returns to the flames for Veronica. Doctor Who and his companions make their apologise and depart, as Count Tarkin and Veronica watch the burning house — unaware that The bod of the elder, “mad” Tarkin is lying in the drawing room, draped protectively over the dead body of his wife Veronica as it lies by the fireplace.
Time-Placement: This story takes place between the movies Dr. Who and the Daleks and Daleks Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.
Continuity Note: The character of Tarkin may very well be a tip-of-the-hat towards Grand Moff Tarkin from Star Wars – Episode IV: A New Hope, also portrayed on-screen by Cushing.
Gone too Soon by Christopher M. Wadley 6th Doctor
The Doctor has seen his future and knows that his current incarnation will be cut short in its prime. He prepares for his death by returning to the dawn of Time and carving his name on the first inhabitable planet, and then travelling to Germany to jam with the Beatles before they hit it big. He observes the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven and gives his mother enough money to ensure that she will be able to keep the child her husband doesn’t want. He then visits his old mentor At The time of his death, to bid him thanks and farewell. He then continues his journeys, satisfied that he has done all he needs to do in this life.
Time-Placement: The Sixth Doctor is travelling alone and has just seen his personal future, placing this story after The Trial of a Time Lord. However, the end does not fit with the beginning of Time of Your Life, which suggests that this story takes place between companions and before Business Unusual.
Reunion by Jason Loborik 2nd Doctor
Dan Blackwood, a solicitor celebrating his thirtieth birthday by drinking alone, is picked up by a beautiful young woman who leads him to a deserted Underground station and forces him aboard a train with eight entranced young men and a fat man named Dobtcheff. A strange little man named the Doctor then arrives, claiming that he is tracking a source of time distortion, but Dobtcheff holds him off at gunpoint while he conducts a psychic séance. Dan is swept up in the emotions generated by the séance, but as alien thoughts and memories start to fill his brain, the Doctor snaps him awake and drags him to safety. The confused Dan admits that he has recently been suffering from strange dreams of burning and drowning, and the Doctor hypnotises him and learns that an alien influence is dormant in Dan’s mind — and is seeking revenge. He and Dan return to the carriage, where Dobtcheff is transforming into an alien, having drained more of his essence out of the young men and killed them in the process. He summons his escape pod to him, telling the Doctor that his people came to Earth in the future to request aid against an alien invasion — but when their fully armed battle cruiser arrived above Earth without warning, the human race panicked and destroyed it. Dobtcheff’s escape pod was flung into the past, and he transferred his life essence into an unborn human fetus — but it has taken longer to recover than he anticipated to recover, and his life essence has been divided between the child’s numerous descendents. Realising that he will never complete himself and escape, Dobtcheff decides to set his pod to self-destruct, destroying London in revenge. To do so, however, he must drain the life essence out of Dan, and the Doctor supports Dan, giving him the strength he needs to resist. The alien collapses, dead, and the Doctor deactivates the escape pod’s self-destruct and leaves Dan to recover from what everyone assumes is an accident on the Underground.
Time-Placement: the Second Doctor appears to be travelling alone and is investigating time distortion, implying that this is a Season 6b story.
Planet of the Bunnoids by Harriet Green 1st Doctor, Steven and Vicki
The TARDIS materialises on a beautiful green world, but when Steven and Vicki emerge they are captured by blue-skinned humanoid natives and dragged off to a cave, while the Doctor is held captive in the TARDIS by a robot bunny rabbit with laser beams in its ears. The Bunnoid is the servant of a Lapino, a giant brain which feeds on emotion; this particular Lapino crashed on this world some time ago, and if it does not report home soon, its people will release a pulse of mental energy to destroy its ship and prevent their technology from falling into alien hands. To prevent this, the Lapino intends to torture one of the Doctor’s companions to death to provide itself with the emotional energy it needs to escape. The Doctor instead convinces it to alter their perceptions, and cause them to act out the story of Cinderella and fall in love. To complete the story the Doctor reluctantly takes on the role of the fairy godmother, and Steven and Vicki thus fall in love. The Lapino then accuses the Doctor of manipulating his companions to suit his own selfish ends, and the Doctor’s guilt gives it the last of the energy it needs to escape. Steven and Vicki awaken with no memory of their fairy-tale adventure, apart from a nagging recollection of having seen the Doctor in a tutu, and the embarrassed Doctor vows never to speak of it again.
Time-Placement: the Doctor mentions the Chumblies, thus placing this story between Galaxy 4 and The Myth Makers.
Monsters by Tara Samms 7th Doctor and Ace
The Doctor and Ace are investigating reports of missing people and lights in the London sky, and while the Doctor searches for hiding aliens in a nearby mausoleum, Ace meets a young girl named Kirsty who claims that her mother is poisoning her. In a newsagent’s near the centre of the disappearances, Ace and Kirsty see a poster advertising a meeting of “Friends of the Sky”, but when they attend, Ace concludes that The group’s leader is a sad, lonely man whose dreams of aliens coming to take them to a better life have no basis in reality. Kirsty, desperate to escape from her mother, is furious with Ace for challenging Chester, and flees back to the newsagent’s — but the newsagent, unwilling to let her escape, attacks Ace when she arrives and locks them both up in his cellar. The Doctor, meanwhile, finds only a gang of youths, including Kirsty’s brother David, vandalising the mausoleum; there are no other monsters there. The youths retreat and see that The newsagent’s is closed, and the gang leader orders David to break in and steal some stuff. In so doing, he disturbs the creature which has taken on the form of the newsagent, and which has been killing children and lonely people in order to build itself a flesh cocoon in which to heal and hide from the others which are following it. David flees in terror as the Doctor shows up to distract the creature, but just as it is about to overpower the Doctor, Ace and Kirsty escape and rescue him. They all escape moments before the hunters arrive and destroy the newsagent’s in a burst of light. Kirsty flees back home, willing to face even her own mother rather than this sort of thing, and the Doctor admits to Ace that Kirsty’s mother may be suffering from “Munchausen by proxy” — a mental disorder which drives her to poison her own daughter and take her around to the doctor’s in order to get attention. But he has no time to help Kirsty; there are too many monsters about for him to fight them all, they no longer hide in the darkness… and it’s becoming more and more difficult for the Doctor to keep ahead Of them.
Time-Placement: there are no reference points to other adventures, but the Doctor’s and Ace’s behaviour suggests that it takes place in Season 26 or later.
Special Occasions: 3. Better Take Care by Steve Burford 4th Doctor and Romana II
The Doctor and Romana sneak into the Brigadier’s home at Christmas, and the Doctor, dressed as Santa, leaves presents in a stocking for his old friend.
Time-Placement: Romana remembers the events of City of Death. Also, see Special Occasions 1 and 4.
Face Value by Steve Lyons 6th Doctor, Crystal, Zog and Jason
The Doctor, Jason, Crystal and Zog arrive outside Leisureworld, a domed theme park on the planet Krennos, to investigate rumours that people’s behaviour has changed after their visits here. The plants in the swamp come to life and try to drag them down into the mud, but guards from Leisureworld arrive in time to rescue Crystal, Jason and Zog — but not the Doctor. Trying to recover from the Doctor’s apparent death, Jason and Crystal try to relax in Leisureworld only to discover that something odd is going on here; the staff seems oddly nervous around them and appears incapable of running the operation properly. Zog breaks into the off-limits swimming pool, and discovers a pile of comatose bodies — the real staff of Leisureworld and its visitors. The Doctor arrives in time to stop the Manager from killing his companions, and the Manager admits that he and his staff are Chameleons, who have taken over Leisureworld and are using it as a trap to steal tourists’ identities. The Doctor now informs him that Leisureworld was already a trap; the planet Krennos is alive, and the staff of Leisureworld was sapping the visitors’ vitality to feed it so they could study it. The Chameleons, unaware of this, have inadvertently cut off the planet’s food supply, and it has thus grown hungry. The plants smash apart the dome and start to pull the staff and visitors out into the swamp, but the Manager, accepting responsibility, uses the Chameleon mind-transfer machine to link himself to the attacking plants. The shock of trying to take on the entire planet’s personality kills him and stuns the planet back into a dormant state, and the shame-faced Chameleons agree to release their prisoners.
Time-Placement: This story takes place after the Sixth Doctor’s version of the stage play The Ultimate Adventure.
Storm in a Tikka by Mike Tucker and Robert Perry 7th Doctor, Ace and K9
Having dealt with the Rani in Albert Square, the Doctor, Ace and K9 are then drawn to the nearby Watford by a spatial anomaly. While the Doctor investigates, Ace enters a nearby Indian takeaway for curry, but the mirrored walls prove to be a transmat system which sends her and K9 to an alien world. There, an unfortunate cat burglar who had tried to rob the restaurant is captured and sacrificed to a statue of Kali by the cultists who live here — and the statue comes to life, slaughters its worshippers and follows the trace of the DNA from the sacrificial blood back to Earth. There, her ancient enemy, who has been posing as the takeaway’s cook, engages her in battle, as they have done throughout the centuries. K9 reactivates the transmat and transports himself and Ace back to Earth, and the Doctor, realising that Kali is drawing her power through the restaurant’s mirrors, covers them all in white paint. Kali thus vanishes, as does her enemy, who tells the Doctor that Their battle will continue even though innocent people could have died. The Doctor, Ace and K9 return to the TARDIS and depart to prepare themselves for the game show they’ve been invited to participate in.
Time-Placement: This story takes place between Dimensions in Time and Search Out Science.
Special Occasions: 4. Playing with Toys by David Agnew 4th Doctor and Romana II
As Romana relaxes from her strenuous day, the morose Doctor explores the darkness in the TARDIS and finds an abandoned toybox. Children once played with these toys, inventing new and complex games, but as they grew older the games grew more complex, and the toys were set aside. Perhaps the parents who first bought the toys are confused that Their grown-up children no longer play with them. Deep in the box the Doctor finds a doll resembling a Chinese Mandarin, but when he turns to tell Romana, he finds that he has become a marionette, supported by strings, and unable to move himself.
Time-Placement: This story seems to imply that all of the Special Occasions stories take place one after the other.
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Time-Placement: Not really applicable…