Author: Lissy Strata
Rating: All Ages
Word Count: 22029
Author's Summary: The TARDIS's translation circuit is sabotaged by small, furry aliens. Then it all goes downhill from there.
Characters/Pairings: First Doctor, Ian, Barbara, Susan
Warnings: None. Except don't be drinking anything while reading.
Recc'ed Because: I am so happy that this story got finished in time for me to rec it! The entry says Unfinished but the last chapter is entitled "Epilogue" and it's...well it's a fantabulous ending to a hilarious romp, so I'm going to call it finished for the purposes of recc-ing. Since I recc-ed a very dark and bleak story yesterday, now it's time for something completely different. I'm talking about cantankerous One, earnest Susan, Ian and Barbara adjusting to the weird Life and Times that come with the TARDIS... and a community of alien Possums, complete with generals, angry moms, angry mobs of moms, cults, scientists, insecure teenaged soldiers, LARP-ers, and sci-fi writers. Possums. With names like Murray, Philly, Squigly and Maude. Whose children stay out to all hours of the day and likely forget their protective sunglasses. There is also mystery, celebrations, kidnappings, captures, escapes, rituals, games, reluctant apologies, and a trial. Oh, and did I mention the TARDIS translator circuit goes missing early on?
Honestly I don't read a lot of the first Doctor. I'm not very familiar with the era, but this story makes me want to read more. It is like what would happen if the very first TARDIS foursome starred in a Whovian Panto play. Actually, much of it reminds me of the silliness (brilliant silliness) of the Big Finish Audio "The One Doctor." Anyhow, I laughed. A lot. Even if you've never seen one episode of William Hartnell & crowd, this story will make you laugh too. The visuals are cracktastic, the story zips all over the place (although manages to seamlessly switch around POVs very effectively), and well, it's just plain fun.
How did that thing work, anyway? It made it so they could understand everyone else and vice-versa, that much was clear, but what did that mean? When they were in France, for example, had she been speaking French without knowing it? That feeling in her head; she'd felt something similar long ago, when the TARDIS had taken off with them for the first time. Had the ship done something to her mind? Barbara wasn't particularly pleased by the thought. She had so many questions she wanted to ask!
Another question occurred to her as she watched the two possums chatter at each other. Did the TARDIS translate nonverbal communication as well? Only earlier it had been easy to see these possums as people because they'd been so expressive. Now, a lot of their body language was harder to read, and they seemed to be more like trained animals. At least with Susan, the nonverbal signals were the same as always.
Come to think of it, were they? They'd tried to communicate a little through gesture on the walk over, but there were a few aspects that felt muddled. It was hard to describe. It was a bit like trying to keep time in a piece of music, and a few notes are ever so slightly late. The music was still playable, but those few odd notes made it vaguely disconcerting. Barbara wondered if Susan was thinking the same thing about her right now.
Susan was thinking about whether or not she should let Barbara know that she'd been wearing her cardigan inside-out all day.