Author: Kalima (lordshiva)
Word Count: 5581
Charcters/Pairings: Fifth Doctor, Tegan, OC
Warnings: Reference to off-screen date rape
Author's Summary: Tegan misplaces her key. She did not have a good time losing it. The Doctor sets out to retrieve it, and, in the process, changes a young man's perception of himself, and his place in the world.
recced because: Kalima has a gift for creating compelling, original characters who are used brilliantly to give us an outsider's perspective on the story. In this case the story is told from the viewpoint of a man who is not directly involved in the conflict and is caught up in the fallout of his room mate's very bad decision. It's an interesting technique to see the conflict of the story observed through two different lenses - the OC reacting to the conflict itself as well as dealing with the Doctor's reaction to the conflict. It's a tricky bit of writing to pull off and Kalima does it with panache. When I first read this story I had not yet seen any Fifth Doctor episodes and this story made me crave them deeply. There is a real sense of "Oncoming Storm" and darkness beneath this incarnations pretty facade - I was actually cringing waiting to see what would happen - yet despite pushing the boundaries, Kalima never breaks character. It's a delicious story.
“Wow. They don’t make them like this anymore!” he cried, testing the weight and balance of the bat with an easy grace. “I could go back and pick it up when it was new of course, but it could never achieve this patina---sweat and spit and dust worn into the grain. Where did you get it?”
The reverence and gee-whiz enthusiasm managed to throw Justin off balance once again. “Um…my granddad gave it to me. He played in the minor leagues in the fifties.”
“Well, it’s nothing short of magnificent, I hope you know. Aluminum can’t hold a candle to a stout piece of hickory.” He rotated his wrist so that the end of the bat circled a few inches above the floor. “Do you play?”
“Not much. Not anymore.”
“Nor I. Never get the time.” He laughed, as if he’d said something really funny. “What I wouldn’t give for just one glorious summer of nothing else to do. Of course,” he said, raising the bat to his shoulder, his smile dazzling and dangerous. “Baseball’s not really my game.”
Justin’s hair flew back from his forehead. A deep-pitched whistle sounded a fraction of second later, as if the bat’s motion through the air had broken the sound barrier.
His legs wobbled suddenly, and he gave up trying to stand on them.