Tag Archives: chris chibnall

Excerpt From “Chess With An Ostritch & Other Thraham Prompts” (Coming Soon)

Chess With An Ostritch

Thought I’d share a story from my forthcoming free anthology e-book “Chess With An Ostritch & Other Thraham Prompts”, a collection of Doctor/Graham stories that I was requested to write from a fellow author and fan of mine on Archive of Our Own called ‘Vgault’. Expect it to drop sometime this weekend or next week.

***

Yaz stepped out of the Taxi as delicately as she could, the baby bump doing its utmost to keep her pressed down on the seat, Ryan hoisting her out holding both her hands. She tipped the driver his money and the cab hastily sped off.

Yaz and Ryan made their way towards Graham’s house and looked at one another. There was love present between the two, but also a lingering sense of uncertainty.

They had faced many hardships together in the years that led them through their gradual courtship, but now as the reality of their new life loomed, nested in a physical cocoon ready to break free any day now, the question of how to best go forward compelled them to process their options.

This was not a safe world. Not any longer.

They knocked on the door, and Graham answered, a toothbrush lodged in his mouth.

“What are you doing Granddad?” asked Ryan.

“I’m taking my temperature” said Graham

“With a toothbrush?” asked a bemused Yaz.

“Yeah, it was the Doc’s idea”

“We’d like to see The Doctor if you don’t mind” said Yaz.

“She doesn’t want visitors. She thinks something’s after her. It’s got her proper spooked”

“So why did you open the door then?” Ryan asked.

“Because I don’t agree with her”

Yaz called out for The Doctor.

“Doctor? It’s us, if you don’t want us in, I can understand, social distancing and all that, but we’ve been through the worst of it you know…the toll’s gone down since Easter, that’s what they’ve said”

The silence from the interior of the house was deafening, and gave Yaz a shudder as the disquiet only worsened her existing apprehensions.

“Doctor…we wanted to talk to you just a bit, it’s our baby, will it be safe? Do you know something you’re not telling us?”

Graham walked into the house, handing Yaz the moist toothbrush. He climbed up the stairs and into his bedroom, where he spotted The Doctor, hung over the edge of the bed, her boots off, clutching a stuffed teddy bear. A photograph of a strangely alluring and quizzical young lady with a short haircut distinct to the 1960s. The photograph looked like it had been taken in a junkyard, and it was in black and white.

The Doctor grabbed the photo and tenderly stroked the features of the girl with the tips of her fingers, she bit her lip anxiously.

She spoke to the photograph, even though she was aware of her living audience of one beside her, as Graham sat himself down to comfort The Doctor.

“They’ve still got all you’re going through yet to come, how do I prepare them for that? For all I know, this is what sets it off now, what weakens humanity, what readies them for the days where they lose everything, the days I left in your care” she said.

“Who are you talking to the Doc?” asked Graham.

“The past I left in your future” The Doctor spoke, wanting to apologize for the riddle but was sure Graham wouldn’t mind a bit of bamboozlement.

“Doctor?” Yaz called again.

“You’ve got to answer her sometime Doc” Graham said.

The Doctor put the photograph down and curled up in his arms, wrapping her right arm warmly around his head.

“We’re living through an uncertain time Graham, one I can’t spoil, in case you lot try to rewrite every line.  This is one time I’m going to have to heed my wife’s warnings….and take my first selves’ advice. Oh why do our minds wander so far from how they were in our youth?”

“When we’re young we look at it all very unclearly, we’re lost in the arrogance of it all, the audacity of it, it’s only when we’re older that we look at life a bit clearer, or when we’re faced with something that makes us take it less for granted. Strangely enough, those of us that see it all too clearly are still on some level afraid we’ll be amongst those who vanish”

“I’ve been a lifetime of older people Graham, and all those lives are among the vanished, footprints in the sand on a warm beach, just like that, we’re gone”

“As long as we’ve got today, we’ve got each other, we’re family, and it’s about to get even bigger once the baby comes calling”

“She wants me to be its godmother, but what kind of God would I be exactly?”

“I don’t think you should take it so literally Doc”

“I’ve played God for so long Graham, and it still doesn’t keep anyone together. They vanish, they all vanish, and I linger on. I can speak baby, but what else can I say to them other than try to not get themselves killed by an invisible killer?”

“Tell them there’s a visible hand holding theirs, tell them to trust in a healer that will do their best to make them feel better, tell them to be brave, tell them to trust you”

“You know how socially awkward I am”

“I know you can learn Doc, I know from how much you talk about your wife that you learned to love, and, hey, you fancy me a little don’t you?”

The Doctor giggled.

“More than a little you big lolly” she said.

Graham kissed The Doctor on the forehead.

“This kid has a whole world of love waiting for him Doc, don’t deny him it, don’t count him among those who’ll vanish tomorrow, remind him how special he is today, and for every tomorrow, because every tomorrow becomes today”

The Doctor grinned, pressing her lips against Grahams’, she then quietly pricked his nose with her finger  got up, put on her boots, and dashed down the stairs to give Yaz the best possible advice she could.

She would reassure Ryan and Yaz that their baby would be safe as long as they worked hard to keep him so.

Because every day is a struggle, regardless of how sick the earth makes us, the perseverance against the illness, the will to survive, is what makes the human race ultimately win each tomorrow as it comes.

Sometimes she lets that slip her mind as she walks through eternity, sometimes she forgets. It’s up to the blessings in her life, the Rivers, the Susan’s, the O’Brien’s, the fam, to remind her that those still privileged  to dare tomorrow should never be made to feel as if they count amongst those who vanished yesterday.

 

 

Doctor Who-Can You Hear Me?-Thraham Edition [Fanedit]

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With only a day to go before Doctor Who is declared ‘dead’ for the 85855898th time, I thought it best if we dialled back the clock hands a few weeks to the last time this happened…which in itself came a few weeks after that one time it was also declared deceased (the pitiful Orphan 55)…that’s right, we’re covering the final moments of ‘Can You Hear Me’

You can tell what I’m going to tweek already can’t you?

Those who are regulars to this blog will know from some of my fanfiction here that I am a massive fan of the pairing of Graham and The Doctor, or Thraham as it’s few fans collectively call it. I find I’m more a fan of the pair’s potential rather than what we sincerely get on-screen, of which little exists.

When they do have moments, they’re often comical and endearing in that fashion, but the notion both could find solace in one another over more complex issues, such as both having lost their wives, has always weighed heavily on me.

The two coming to such an understanding has been explored in rather kinky detail in fanfics such as ‘How Far From Morning‘, but sadly not in the show. Indeed, Graham spends most of the time cracking jokes in ways that are rarely acknowledged by the rest of the cast, The Doctor included. Sometimes it feels like he’s invisible.

So maybe it wasn’t a good idea for Graham to try and open up to The Doctor about his cancer concerns in the final moments of ‘Can You Hear Me?’, as it didn’t seem to register with the character in any meaningful way. One can argue this is due to social anxieties but the manner in which this was executed felt all too random and not at all what Jodie’s Doctor often aims for, it felt like a twist too far, and a poor choice of subject to bypass.

It took me about four or five days to spin it into something romantic. As a ‘shipper it’s my job to make lemonade out of the piss you’re given, and I just about managed it by taking advantage of the promised minute The Doctor offered Graham to come up with something that would be helpful. Be it the decision to take him out (the visit to Shelly), to kiss him, to tell him she loves him, the obvious answers came to me…and then I realised these answers ought to trickle in to the actual episode.

How did I achieve this you may ask? Using audio excerpts from a little short film starring Jodie produced in 2012 called ‘Smoke’

 

Hopefully this minimal edit goes a long way to healing the hole all seven Thraham fans have in their twin hearts for the time being.

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Doctor Who-Mrs. Doctor [Fanfiction]

Mrs. Doctor

The Doctor was at a loss to know what they meant, Byron, Mary, all those at the villa that had graced her and her family with their company on this disenchanted evening.

‘Mrs. Doctor?’, no, no just Doctor would do.

But why would they care to assign her a lawfully wedded title?

Byron in particular had recently been separated from his wife, why would he address any of his pursuits this way?

And pursue her he did, it was almost flattering, but the rules of historical engagement prevented her from pursuing the matter further.

In truth, they were not wrong.

In another life, she had taken a wife, her parents having conceded to the union, the pairing were tethered to one another on the very edge of existence, time could not move forward without them.

With the mightiest tide of time, the river did soar, and its song was a name that swept across the ocean of stars.

She was a universe unto itself.

The song had ceased for that wife, though her own would never end.

And if her song could never end, who goes on singing with her?

She reflected on her role to her three companions, and came to a rather obvious conclusion.

The dynamic had been obvious to all those in attendance to the villa.

Quite right too.

So who did they assume she was married to?

She walked slowly around the console, creeping up on her three family members, those who had agreed to advance with step two of her plan to avert the rise of the Cyber-armies, her eyes trained and focused on one in particular.

She thought back to the fireside chat she’d had with him in the villa under the cold and daunting curtain of night, a heat of the moment argument between the two that now resonated warmly in her memory. Squabbling over things she didn’t believe in and a man’s failure to complete the sole task he was assigned to, keeping his eye trained on a wandering sleepwalker.

Mary Shelly, Byron and the rest had observed behavioural patterns such as this, and indeed, had noticed the instant Graham O’Brien made reference to the considerable distance she had placed between their transport and their destination.

Their conclusions were easy to understand.

As Yaz and Ryan wandered off to get changed, The Doctor steadily approached Graham, who was hanging around the console, almost expecting what was to come next.

She walked right up to his side and gave him a gentle kiss on the cheek.

“What was that for Doc?” Graham asked, a little giddy.

“For giving me a minute” she said.

She encouraged Graham to get a move on, for there was a war to win.

“God speed gentle husband” she whispered.

Doctor Who-Spyfall Part One [Fanedit]

jodie

Although I’ve had my fair share of criticism towards series 11, I did enjoy about four or five episodes out of ten, so I gave it more than a fair shot.

Is it perfect? Nope, is it the worst? Nope, just in-between, neither here nor there, half-way up the stairs is the stair where it sits. Neither up nor down, neither in the nursery or in the town

That’s enough Jim Henson analogies.

I went into the New Year knowing the big cliffhanger in advance, unlike some fans, and thus my expectation was tempered. Would I have been blown away by the big reveal had I not known? I believe I would have sussed it out pretty quickly given the actor and alias he was going under wasn’t credited in the Radio Times, I’d have smelt a rat.

Was this episode good, and does it warrant a fanedit? Yes and hell yes, but as you’ll find here I only cut two things, as I enjoyed the full thing for the most part, never finding it dull and eager to see more of everyone. Only real complaints I have are the script needed a bit of a punch-up to sharpen the dialogue, and there wasn’t much of Doc and Graham together as they had to share screentime with Sascha Dawan. Still, there were a few scraps here and there that I used for a few fanfics, all centred on ‘shipping Thirteen and Graham.

So what did I alter?  Come on, what do you think? The “upgrade” line of course. Men and women are equal, not one gender is superior to the other.

And lastly, the cliffhanger now comes directly after The Doctor is transported away and we crash into credits on the shot of the plane hurtling to it’s apparaent doom, taking the companions with it.

You’ll probably see the official release of this on FE.Org sometime in November 2020, but if you can’t wait that long, I have a try-out TX version to hold you over until then

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Doctor Who-The Catch [Fanfiction]

The Catch

 

Graham took a deep intake of breath as he sat down beside Agent O, the evening before had put both of them as well as The Doctor on an apprehensive edge, but they still felt like they could brave whatever was to come, and they trusted the reassuring light of morning more than the distrust and danger of night.

“How’s Yaz?” said O as he handed Graham a cup of tea

“Ryan’s outside with her now, she looked pretty shaken, here’s hoping his company does her some good, but if that don’t work, we’ll have to put a group effort in. That’s what we do you know, we support each other”

“One big happy family” O said under his breath

Graham got the distinct impression that O muttered this with some degree of envious resentment; he wasn’t quite sure where he had gotten it from, but it wouldn’t hurt to ask down the line.

However, in this instance O was quick to ask his own questions.

“How long have you known the Doctor, Graham?”

“Well it’s a tricky question that, see things never really happen in a straight line with the Doc”

Graham sensed O wanted to share more than what he was already telling, he knew things of The Doctor, things he felt he needed to know. A part of him also felt slightly frustrated he hadn’t taken the lead with the inquisition.

“Why? How much do you know about her?”

“A bit,” ha “our paths crossed very briefly once, when she was a man.”

Graham almost choked on his tea.

“When she was a what?” he said aloud

“Has she never mentioned that?”

“Yeah, yeah she did. The night Grace, my wife, died, when we first met her. She claimed she’d been a white-haired Scotsman. I thought it was some wild random joke only she got, but obviously there was more to it”

“You seem surprised” said O.

“I suppose, shouldn’t I be?”

“Well, it IS current year” O elaborated.

“Oh, well, forgive me then, I come from a time where news like this would level anyone of my generation’s upbringing. It’s quite a lot to take in, especially since I…”
He trailed off, almost letting something slip to O that he preferred to keep private.

“..Never mind, not important”

“You got any idea where she’s from?” O asked next.

“Well, we’ve tried to ask, but she just changes the subject, yeah.”

O’s eyes glanced in the direction of a stack of folders and files perched on the top of a shelf.

“I’ve got everything up there, anything you want answered about The Doctor can be found up there, all the Intel I could gather while working at MI6. It can be all yours Graham”

“Isn’t that all confidential? Official secrets act and all that?”

“Come on, I won’t tell” O said.

Graham now sensed that O was pressuring him, almost mischievously, like they were two errant schoolboys who had gotten their hands on the answer to a really tough exam and were daring the other to take a peek at the answers.

“What do you say Graham? Do you want to take a look?”

Graham took another sip, stared at the shelf, teased he’d get up out of the seat, and then stopped to process what he was considering.

Finally, he turned back to O and shook his head.

“I’d rather she tell me, when she’s ready”

“Quite right, you’re a good catch for her Graham”

“Eh? The Doc? I suppose she’s alright” Graham replied, before mentally cursing himself.

He hadn’t responded with something that definitively took issue with what O had suggested, and now he was going to pounce on that to further an already complicated conversation.

“She’s quite the looker”

Graham smiled, but the look on his face told O that pursuits like that just weren’t meant to be.

“Oh I don’t think along those lines, I’m old enough to be as much her granddad as I am Ryan’s’”

“Then you don’t know the stories?”

“She’s got a reputation; we learn something about that every day around her”

“Yes, but if you did read the files I have on her, you’ll find she’s older than she looks, even older than you. Age needn’t be an issue with you two. You’re both the oldest and the wisest of your little group”

“Oh come off it, me and her? Only in a fantasy world”

“Strange, that…does appear to be something you’re both currently qualified for”

“I’m not a well man O; I’ve had my share of scares with the big C”

“Oh I’m sure C was just splendid around you”

“The other ‘C’, cancer” Graham corrected him.

“Oh, but of course, my apologies”

“Yeah, I’m not out of the woods with it either. Me and Doc couldn’t have anything, if we got too attached, she’d end up saying goodbye to me just as soon as she learned how to listen”

The Doctor suddenly burst out of the TARDIS carrying a large jug of liquid.

“Come on you two, everyone outside. Lot’s to catch up on. I made ice tea. Possibly” she said, showing the contents to Graham proudly, before dashing towards the front door, beckoning Graham and O to join her.

“So considerate” O said.

“Ice tea? Grace loved to take that while we were abroad. Haven’t drank it since she passed. How did she know?”

“Maybe she does listen once in a while…perhaps she even made it to impress you, let you know just how lucky she is to have you in her life” O said.

Graham gave him a piercing glance, more perturbed than ever with what he was implying. This was not the kind of conversation he had desired in the morning, nor the kind of feelings he wanted to confront.

“Just saying” he concluded.

“O, not a whiff of this conversation reaches her ears, you got that?”

“Absolutely” he said.

The two got up, ready to head outside, Graham did one last look at the files on the shelf, then turned and joined The Doctor.

O put his right hand on Graham’s shoulder.

“Rest assured Graham, nothing of what I said was meant to make you feel uncomfortable, it’s just…when one comes to understand The Doctor like I do, you tend to see more of what makes her so…satisfying”

“You got something for her yourself? I know my pulse can race, but you’re acting like your own beat is a bit of a beast around her”

“Oh it very much is…it’s like a drumbeat” O said.

Doctor Who-I Can Feel It [Fanfiction]

coming

 

The TARDIS’ radiant emerald yellow light diminished and the central column gently came to a halt, the whole of the interior almost drowning in pitch blackness were not for a vibrant blue light.

The Doctor’s back came very close to leaning against one of the columns, her head was titled back, and her right hand was clenched, as if she were trying to draw enough strength to physically attack an unknown force that was driving her to an intense discomfort.

As a child, she had ran away from the untempered schism, as an elder with the temperament of a child, he had stolen away a ship and took his granddaughter to the stars. She was fearless in that instant.

When the time came to let her grandchild go, she had no fear there either

In thwarting the terrors of Mondas, she had faced the first of many deaths with just as much bravery.

This was an altogether different feeling.

This was a different kind of fear, a fear that rivalled the one forged in the caverns of Metabelis III.

A fear she wasn’t sure she could conquer.

Her face was a complicated jigsaw, changing expression to match the unease in which the anxiety had swept over her.

She felt an ache in the pit of her stomach, she felt a tremble in her hand, sensations of pain that only drove her to distraction, and set her on course for confusion.

There was anger and resentment towards this feeling, there needed to be a counter emotion, a strong show of force, an urge to resist and reject that fear, but it was proving a trying task.

Yaz couldn’t know, Ryan couldn’t know, she needed to hold it together for them, and for one other in particular.

That significant other soon walked into the room, whistling a few Broadway show tunes to himself.

“Hey Doc, what’s with the lights being out in here? We’re almost ready for supper…good on Ryan for paying, I’m skint. We could do with a few egg and ham sarnies from Greggs’, something to chew on while on the go, y’know?”

The Doctor didn’t dare turn around; she didn’t want to subject him to her pain when he was in such jubilant spirits.

But he could sense the disquiet in her soul, and he gently perched himself down where she sat and, seeing that she was now trembling, leaned over and placed a hand over her shoulder.

“What’s the matter Doc?”

The Doctor gently slid over to her side, leaning her head gently on Graham’s shoulder.

“Something’s coming for me…I can feel it” she whispered to him.

The two lay there, precious minutes ticking by, minutes that could be spent reassuring Yaz and Ryan that things were OK and they could go out for sandwiches.

The Doctor’s fears hadn’t left her, but she knew the courageous man providing her warmth in the uninviting darkness, both inner and outer, would never leave her either.

She could feel it.

Doctor Who-Cold Blood [Fanedit]

Cold Blood

 

Another quick alternative cut of the second half of a two-parter, this time for one of Chibnall’s big offenders from series five. I personally don’t mind this one, though I thought it would be interesting to see how it is judged without the more interesting aspects of it missing…meaning Rory’s first of many, many, many deaths and the crack in time.

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Doctor Who-Resolution [FANEDIT]

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The 2019 season of Doctor Who has been and gone, with fans being served only one appetiser all year in the shape of New Year’s Day special “Resolution”. From now ’till 2020, the fans will have to make do with either Big Finish or entertainment by their own means..and that in itself is truly the most exciting prospect of all. Fan Films, Fan Fiction, and Fan Edits await to quench our thirst. It certainly won’t be a dry year.

So to see us into the new year, I’ve cobbled together my first Jodie era DW edit for many weeks “Resolution” was a fine episode with only a few patchy moments, all of which have been glossed over here.

Gone is the opening explaining the Dalek being cut into three and scattered across various locations…a lot of how the Dalek gathers it’s pieces back together is also explained by the Doctor in the TARDIS when she first detects the danger shortly after she and her friends have a gander at the cosmic fireworks.

I’ve also arranged it so  U.N.I.T and it’s indefinite suspension isn’t mentioned at all.

Also out is the extra ending where the Dalek forces the Doctor to take it into the TARDIS. Here, we just resolve the situation with the Microwave saving the day. Also cut is the police officer who comes out to the Dalek. This is mainly to appease the crowd who are greatly angered with the “Bury your Gays” tv trope.

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