Story: Gearbox (The Won't Miss a Piece Remix)
Rating: All Ages
Word Count: 6103
Author's Summary: “How does the TARDIS work?” asks Ace.
Characters/Pairings: Ace McShane, Seventh Doctor, Barbara Wright, Ian Chesterton, First Doctor, Jamie McCrimmon, Zoe Herriot, Second Doctor, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, Third Doctor, Romana II, Fourth Doctor, Erimem, Fifth Doctor, Melanie Bush, Sixth Doctor, Hex Schofield.
Recced because: It's a work of brilliance, and I really mean that. The structure of it -- interspersing scenes between the Seventh Doctor and Ace with scenes between earlier Doctors and their companions -- is very well done, and the writing is top-notch, but all of that is almost irrelevant once you come to realize the central conceit of the fic, which is truly a thing of marvelous beauty. If you don't know all the Doctors or companions involved, don't worry, because this is a fic where knowing the characters isn't important (I don't know them all either). All you really need to know about is the TARDIS -- and you might just pick up a new piece of fanon by the end.
“Hm?” The Doctor pulls the window’s curtain to one side, trying to see if there’s anything out there. Just the vortex. He’s not sure where the sunlight could be coming from. “What was that?”
“I said, how does it work?”
“The window? I believe it’s a transposed image relay, using—”
“No.” Ace glances at the window, scowl melting into puzzlement. “How does the TARDIS work?”
“What an excellent question,” says the Doctor. “Tell me if you find any answers, won’t you?”