Story: Cake and the Rani
Rating: All ages
Word Count: 11,098
Author's Summary: In which the Master takes up baking, Three disapproves of his culinary planning and Ten loses his britches, with the Rani's help. No TARDISes were harmed in the making of this fic.
Characters/Pairings: Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, Sergeant Benton, The Doctor (3rd), The Master (Delgado), The TARDIS, UNIT, The Doctor (10th), The Rani and other characters
Warnings: In spite of the worrying implications of the author's summary, surprisingly none
Recced because: I'll be candid right at the outset and admit that I may have had some tangential involvment in inciting this particular fic, or that at any rate I may have been involved in some of the discussions that led to it being incited. A couple of years ago, on a Doctor Who forum that I frequent, a kind of fictional prompt or challenge arose quite by accident from some chance remarks made by members of the forum. To cut a long story short, people started writing humorous fics with one common premise; they all featured Ten, naked, chained to Three by the Master and both of them covered in cake. Despite the worrying potential, I don't think any of these fics veered into the obvious places you might think from that summary. And so a genre was born. Cakefic. And this story remains one of the premier examples.
Now, I don't expect anybody who wasn't a participant to care at all about the previous paragraph, but I still think they should read this fic. Not only does primsong manage to take a pretty silly prompt indeed and weave from it a decent, lengthy and not wholly frivolous story, but she does it with such a deft touch and affection for all of the disparate characters involved. I think one of the things that I really respond strongly to in Doctor Who fanfic is the sense you get in some stories of the writer's deep, abiding love for the show and its characters, and especially when it's clear that love extends across more than one era of the show without fear or favour or fan-wankiness. And that's what I get when I read this fic. Ten and Three and the Master and the Rani and the UNIT bods are all drawn with such affection and insight into their essential natures. And there are some telling little moments, like Three's wistful realisation when he sees his future self's TARDIS that his own exile isn't forever, or the Rani's businesslike ruthlessness and her spiky relationship with the Master, even if it's Delgado!Master in this instance. And it's pretty funny indeed. And it features Ten naked, chained to Three and covered in cake. So go and read it.
The Doctor stood before the battered TARDIS, the familiar-yet-unfamiliar key in his hand. To have her here before him, alive and fully functioning made his hearts lift and beat faster than they had in some time.
He patted the doorframe. "At least it's a comfort to know I do eventually get it going again," he said wistfully, then turned his attention back to where his other self was vanishing down the nearby corridor. He waited as long as he could bear it, then inserted the key. The door swung open at his almost hesitant touch. He stepped forward, his other self's bin tucked under his arm, and then stopped.
"Good…heavens. What the blazes has he done to her?"
rec: Cake and the Rani by Primsong
Story: Cake and the Rani