|Doctor Who Internet Adventure #22 - "Clockwork Orange"
"For we look at things through different eyes, and lo - the world is changed"
by Alan Taylor
Book One: Wind Up
Washington DC, January, 1963.
Roni lay back on the bed waiting for Freddie to come and collect her.
"Going to take you out for dinner, doll," he had said. "Going to take you
somewhere nice." She had been waiting for over two hours. On the radio,
the president was talking about Cuba. Yeah, and five years ago he had been
a lousy lay. She couldn't take him seriously when she thought about him
with his pants round his ankles. The most powerful man in the world.
She'd had better.
She hoped she looked okay for Freddie.
She needed a cigarette, so she reached for the dresser drawer, felt
inside, and found the Lucky Strikes and matches hidden at the back where
she had left them.
Freddie hated her smoking, especially in the bedroom. Said it would be
the death of them both. What if she dropped it, set the whole place on
fire? He was only looking out for her, but she wasn't completely useless.
So she hid the cigarettes from him so that he wouldn't worry. So sweet.
"Hi there doll!"
He was home early, she thought. Rushed back to be with her. Damn. She
stubbed the cigarette out on the wall and let the stub fall behind the
dresser. She hoped she looked seductive enough for him as he stepped
through the bedroom door.
"I swear you get better looking every day, doll," he said and she
"And I'm sure you do too, hon."
He sat beside her on the bed, put his arm around her and they kissed;
her hand found the rough denim of his thigh and worked its way upwards as
his hand started to unbutton the back of her dress. "Hey!" He pulled away
suddenly. "I almost forgot! I got you a present." She knew he hadn't
forgotten really, but he was always lousy with birthday presents. She found
his romantic hamfistedness so endearing at times. She knew what his next
line would be too.
"Close your eyes - no peeking." He always forgot how insensitive that
was.She turned a blind eye to it. Fact was, no matter what he had bought
for her was too much. They couldn't afford anything much, what with her not
able to work. "I bought this for you because I love you," he said, "and
because it's your birthday too. You love surprises, don't you doll?" She
Freddie was directly in front of her, low down - probably on his
knees. She was perched on the edge of the bed, her dress half-undone, and
her pale legs dangling. She reached forward and touched the hairy flesh of
his forearms as he reached towards her, the gift in his hands. "This is
because I love you, doll," he said again, and she could hear that there was
something wrong with his voice - it sounded shaky, like he was crying.
As she inched her hands towards his, she already knew what was in
them. She felt him shake, felt the goose flesh on his wrists. "Please,
Freddie, don't do this to me," she said, quietly, calmly. "Don't do this to
The gun was cold in his hand, the barrel a short stub, no more than
eighteen inches from her face.
"I'm sorry, doll." She could hear that he was crying now. She reached
forward, felt his face, brushed a tear from his cheek. "Things will be
okay, hon. Listen to me. Yeah, our lives have changed, but we're still
together, we've still got each other, and we're strong. We survived back in
LA in '58, we'll survive now. I love you, Freddie. I always have, and I
She wished that she still had her sight, wished she could see him.
"I love you too, doll."
* * *
He remembers this in slow motion.
Gently at first, but with increasing, inexorable force, his finger
pulls back on the trigger. He's fired many guns before, but this time it
feels different, like there is more than just the normal pressure against
his finger. As he pulls back he raises his hands, feeling her fingers
digging into his flesh, her ruby-red nails drawing lines of fresh ruby on
his skin. Her sunglasses fall from her face, revealing the gaping holes
where her pretty eyes once were. The gateway to her soul. Gone. Their
blankness accuses him.
The smell of gunpowder hits him before the sound of the shot or the
recoil. He's not braced properly and falls back, twisting his ankle
slightly. Roni falls back on the bed so slowly. The bullet has passed
straight through her head, and the back of her skull is?
He can hardly bear to look at her. The gun drops to the floor as he
He stands and looks at her forever. He loves her so much. He snapped
round suddenly at the banging on the door, the shouting. Old Carlton, the
building super - who should have been fast asleep.
Shouldn't have heard the shot. Damn.
Panic kicked in, followed almost immediately by a feeling of calm.
He'd been in worse situations than this before. He scooped up the gun and
jumped over the bed, out through the kitchen window and onto the fire
escape. His feet barely touched the metal steps as he threw himself
downwards, head first, running out of the alley into the streets of
Washington. And he ran.
* * *
Only a couple of miles away from him, between Seventh, Ninth, F and G
streets, stood the National Portrait Gallery; a grand building, formally
opened less than a year earlier. There was a woman sitting on the steps;
smartly dressed, in her mid thirties, with reddish brown hair hanging over
her shoulders, and a tired expression on her face. She had a guidebook in
one gloved hand, including glossy images of several works that the gallery
had yet to acquire. She had found it slightly less useless than she had
The thing was, she had taken slightly less time to tour the museum
than she had expected. With the result that - and she checked her watch to
be sure - she had forty minutes of sitting on steps to do before the Doctor
and Luke returned.
She looked over at the TARDIS. So close. Sitting there at the
intersection, somehow incongruous next to the Stop sign, faded paint roudly
advertising that it had been there for decades. If she had a key - even the
spare - she could have nipped in, made herself a nice cup of tea and read a
bit more of 'Pistols for Two'.
Instead, she was stuck on the steps, waiting. Not even a coffee shop
where she could get a half-decent cappuccino. Really, twentieth century
America was a lot more backward than the brochures had said.
She didn't recognise the voice, and the man running towards her wasn't
familiar. Dark hair, thick built, maybe her age, maybe a little older.
Maybe if she ignored him he would go away. Maybe he meant some other
Maybe it was a really common name in this time period. He threw
himself down on the steps next to her and buried his face in her neck. He
was shaking, sobbing.
"I'm so glad to see you," he said, his voice muffled by her scarf.
"I'm terribly sorry," she said, inching away from him. "But I don't
believe we've met. I think perhaps you have me mistaken for someone else."
He looked her firmly in the eye, then.
"Lady, if you're not Kirena Morok then you look very like her. Are the
Doctor and Luke with you? God, I've not seen you guys since '58." He burst
in to tears again.
Think Kirena. He obviously knows you, and that probably means that you
meet some time in his past and your future. Yuck, that's got to be messy.
Anyway - it's kid gloves treatment for this one.
"I killed her, Kirena," he said.
"Roni. I just couldn't bear it. She was so..."
Kirena looked up at the sound of someone clearing their throat.
She hoped he'd be able to handle the situation. She felt that she was
about to drown in a sea of knowing too much about her future.
"Mister Merker! How jolly good to see you again!" said the Doctor,
offering his hand to Freddie. "Now, do tell me, what seems to be the
* * *
"And this would have been a bad time to interfere for what reason exactly?"
Kirena glared at the Doctor. She took off her coat as they entered the
TARDIS and threw it over the console, where it hit one of the controls and
started a red flashing light. The Doctor hit the console with his fist and
the flashing stopped.
"Kirena, Kirena, Kirena," he began.
"And don't you start that condescending nonsense with me, Doctor. He
was upset. He had just killed the woman he clearly loved - blatantly a
mercy killing, I may say - and all you do is buy him a cup of coffee, say
'there, there' and leave him to get picked up by the police. What sort of
intergalactic responsibility is that?"
"Every kind!" he shouted. "We know nothing at all about the man, about
this Roni woman. What was I supposed to do? Take him with us?"
"No, but, take him somewhere, somewhere where the police would never
find him. Australia, or one of the lunar colonies."
"Ignoring for a moment the fact that there are no lunar colonies yet,
what's that supposed to achieve? He's a fugitive from the law. He must have
known the consequences of his actions before he killed her, surely. Who are
we to act as gods and help him escape the consequences of his actions?"
"He needed help. We could have helped him. We didn't. Enough said."
"Would you like a cup of tea?"
She followed him to the far end of the library and into the little
galley kitchen with the stucco walls where he kept the kettle and the
second best china.
While the Doctor busied himself with cleaning some cups, filling the
kettle, finding a brown plastic tray with a McDonalds logo on it, and
arranging some ginger cookies on a plate, Kirena slumped herself against
the door frame.
"I guess," she said at length, "that I may have over-reacted. He just
had that haunted look. The one you get when you know that no matter how
long you live, you'll never be able to run far away enough from yourself.
He'll never forgive himself."
"I know," said the Doctor, reaching up to pull a tin of shortbread
from the top shelf. "It's so sad."
"And another thing - how did you know his name?"
"Well, that was on his driver's licence," explained the Doctor. "Add
that to the fact that I had been standing there for about thirty seconds
before I drew any attention to myself, and you have an effective charade.
Noted that down for future reference?"
Kirena nodded. "Duly noted, Doctor."
He reached in to his inside pocket, pulled out a small handgun and put
it on one side, reached back in to the pocket and pulled out his watch.
"Luke should have been here by now," he said as he replaced the watch.
Kirena looked at the gun, at the Doctor, back at the gun.
"Tea's up," he said.
The china rattled as he lifted up the plastic tray. "And then we can
go back to 1958 and find out a little more about Mister Merker."
Luke ran into the TARDIS - finally - over an hour later. "Well," he
said as he collapsed into an armchair. "Let me tell you guys a story...
unfortunately its not the best story in the world, but it's not far off."
"This better be good, said Kirena," tapping her foot.
"I met someone. Sex is good, I've been too distracted by buggery to
call. I've thought about it, and once I even tried to reach the phone, but
I sort of let things slip away with me. Sorry I'm late. Lovely eyes."
"Oh for fuck's sake," muttered Kirena.
"No harm done," said the Doctor, reaching over the console to push the
"Anyway," continued Luke. "We're in love, and I'm leaving. Just
thought I would pop in to pick up some stuff and say goodbye. It's been
The Doctor looked at the meshing and unmeshing lights of the time
* * *
Five years earlier.
Harris approached the vehicle his gun pointed at the window of the
"Sir could you please put your hands on the wheel." Freddie placed his
hands on the wheel and he imagined Roni beating into him because he loved
He closed his eyes, tight shut, watched the shapes moving, the street
lamps and headlamps behind his eyelids. Waited for the "step out of the car
please" that followed. Groaned when it did.
He knew the drill. Out of the car, legs wide, frisked for weapons. The
cop had his hands on Freddie's shoulders, his waist, his outer thighs,
"I say, that looks like fun, can you do me afterwards?"
The cop paused and both Freddie and the cop looked at the newcomer.
"Oh, don't let me interrupt your fun, boys, but I'd warn you that you
really ought to be more discreet. I hear that the local constabulary don't
look too kindly to your kind."
Harris pulled his hands away from Freddie's crotch, pulled his gun out
and aimed it squarely at the stranger's head, pulled out his badge with the
other hand and waved it in his face.
"I don't know what your game is, kid, but I'm giving you thirty
seconds to get out of here before I do something we'll both regret."
"Oh, okay." He turned back towards the dark corner where a large blue
packing case stood.
"It's been lovely meeting you, Officer. I do hope we bump into each
Harris followed him with his gaze until he disappeared round the back
of the case. Weird kid. He let Freddie off with a caution. This time.
"Christ," said Luke, closing the TARDIS door behind him. "That was
close. For a second there I thought that guy was going to kill me. I guess
it's more dangerous out there than the Doctor told us."
Kirena shrugged. "But you're okay. And the Doctor made it in to the
back seat of Freddie's car?"
Luke nodded. "Crazy way to meet people. I caught him out of the corner
of my eye."
Kirena picked up her raincoat and started to put it on. "I'll be back
in an hour," she said. "I need some space. To think."
"To think?" asked Luke. "About what?"
"Oh right, go all intellectual on me," he teased. "But be careful -
there are some nutters out there."
"Oh, I'll be careful."
She reached her hand into her pocket, felt the butt of Freddie's
Better safe than sorry.
Three hours later neither she nor the Doctor had returned. Luke swore,
and set out into the foggy LA night.
* * *
Frankly, she was a perfect specimen. Sitting on her own, nobody else
around for blocks. Probably wouldn't be missed for a while anyway. He made
up a little fantasy about her. She was a bored housewife, walked out on her
old man because he didn't know how to satisfy her. So she'd stormed out,
slammed the door in his face, left him to reach under the bed for the stack
of eight by tens.
Hell, she was probably naked under that coat. Perfect specimen.
He'd take her back to the precinct, show her what she was missing,
first. Then later, when she cried out in pain, she'd be crying his name. He
could feel little pinpricks on the back of his hand. He liked that feeling.
"Good evening, Miss, are you all right?"
Start with the genteel. Dames love that.
"I'm fine. Leave me alone please, officer."
"I'm sorry, miss," he said, sitting next to her on the bench. "But I
would be shirking in my civic duty if I did that, now wouldn't I? So why
don't you tell me all about it?"
She fixed him with a glare, and he looked deep in to her eyes. A
perfect specimen. "I'm fine." Gritted teeth. "Leave me alone please."
"Why don't you come back to the precinct and we can talk about it
there. Or I could arrest you for solicitation. So which is it to be?"
He had his hand on her leg, digging in to the flesh of her thigh.
Firm. She tried to stand, but he wouldn't let her.
"I don't think you're listenin' to me rightly, sweetheart." His free
hand pulled his revolver from the holster and he jabbed it into her ribs.
"You're coming with me."
"Oh," she said, unfolding her arms and putting them in to her pockets.
"Why didn't you say so?"
There was a shot, although he hadn't pulled the trigger. He was
confused for a moment, disoriented before he realised that the bitch had
shot him in the foot. With that realisation came pain, and the automatic
reaction - a slap across the face with the butt of his gun, knocking her
unconscious, and cutting her forehead. Eyes undamaged though.
He called Harris for backup, and hauled the unconscious dame in to the
back seat of the car. When she woke up she wouldn't have any idea what had
To be continued...
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