Sere watched the Doctor pace back and forth in front of her bed. He’d been rambling for hours. She’d given up trying to keep up and listen to what he was saying.
“…..great, that’s just great! Someone else decided to grow a Time Lady in their basement, what next?” He paused and threw his hands up into the air, “Will the heavens open and pigs rain from the sky? – and you!” He pointed to Sere, “How did you know all of this,” He gestured towards the symbols, “Nobody knows all of this except me and I didn’t tell anybody,” His voice trailed off into incoherent murmurs as he stared at the string of symbols that could change everything if they were deciphered. The whole universe would collapse around him and the stars would go out one by one.
“Why would they put all of this in your mind? You’re just a girl,” He sat beside Sere and placed his hands on her temples, staring into her ice blue eyes.
The Doctor didn’t even dare delve into her mind, for fear of setting off some safety measure placed there by the people who had created her.
“I wish you could tell me. If there was only some way….” He murmured, tucking her hair behind her ears. In response, she placed her hands on his face and temples. Before he could pull back, he was sucked into the murky mist of her mind – the very thing he had wished he could accomplish only moments before. Sere had sensed this and given him what he desired.
Panicking, the Doctor closed every door in his mind and threw open all the doors of hers. Years and years of loneliness poured into the Doctor’s mind, filling him to the brim. He felt like he was drowning in her sorrow. Wading through the most prominent memories, he searched for the one he was looking for. He glanced at two memories of two different regenerations that hovered in the black mist as images flashing by faster than the speed of light. “Oh Sere. What have they done to you?” He reached his hand out to part the veil before the memory he needed. A phantasm of a wolf with a robotic eyepiece appeared and roared in the Doctor’s face, “Where is the Loom?” The Doctor didn’t even flinch when its ghostly fangs were centimeters from his nose. “I have no idea, but I’ll tell you what I do know,” With a screech the monster shattered into water droplets, “You’re part of the mental block that’s stopping Sere from talking,” With the dissipation of the creature, a slight bit of the weight on Sere’s tongue had lifted. The Doctor glanced about his surroundings, “The rest is going to take time,”
He broke the connection with Sere, pulling back from her. She gasped as though she had been holding her breath, skittering backwards from the Doctor in fear.
“Sere, no it’s alright,” The Doctor reached out to her. She closed her eyes and shivered as though he was going to strike her. He hesitated and drew back away from her, “I’m sorry for causing those memories to resurface. I never meant to hurt you,” He stood and began to exit the room.
It was a stuttering, hesitant word that caused the Doctor to pause. He almost couldn’t believe his own ears.
A hand clutched his arm. He looked back to see Sere standing there, her eyes full of – delight perhaps? The Doctor smiled and embraced her, “That’s my girl,”
Looms were given to each family on Gallifrey as a way for Time Lords to reproduce. Because of an ancient curse cast by the last of the Pythia, the matriarchal leaders of Gallifrey, all Time Lords had become sterile. The Looms produced fully grown Time Lords from the DNA of one of the Gallifreyan family members. Instead of producing the child of said family member, it produced the cousin, making descent lateral instead of direct. The adult Time Lords born from the Looms were childlike and had to learn as all children do. Some however could be programmed with knowledge like talking or walking, but there was only a forty percent chance that the programming would actually work. On most occasions, it didn’t.
After Gallifrey was destroyed, the Looms were lost. It was irrelevant whether any Looms survived or not because the Doctor considered himself to be the last Time Lord, and he would not create any more Time Lords from his DNA.
The question that now rested on the Doctor’s mind was, who had possession of a Loom, and who’s DNA had been used? It couldn’t be Rivers – her parents were human. The Loom would automatically reject any human DNA. Of course, the Doctor never did find out how he came to be because he was, in fact, half human. He theorized that it had been his mother who was human, and his father who was a Time Lord, but there was no way to find out now. He had been raised by a family who had possessed a Loom, and taught that he had come from the Loom. But of course, he remembered being a child. It was impossible for him to have been born of the Loom.
The Doctor was sitting in the library, mulling over these puzzling ideas when Sere entered the room. She still looked a little shaken from earlier that morning, but for the most part she had pulled herself together.
“Sere,” The Doctor smiled and sprang to his feet. He had removed his jacket and draped it over the back of the armchair. Sere thought his red braces looked funny, but she didn’t comment. She had never commented on anything, and the mere idea of talking confused her. She banished the thought from her mind. He walked over to her and bent his head so he was speaking into her ear, “What can you tell me about the Loom?”
She shuddered and walked past him towards a stack of books she had made the day before. She wanted to look for a picture book whose cover had fascinated her. Pulling it from its place near the top of the stack, she opened it to the first page. Dinotopia. The Doctor looked over her shoulder at the book, “Oooo, that’s a good one!” She slammed the book shut and whirled around to face him. Her mouth was pressed into a tight line as though she were preventing the words from escaping.
The book she was holding fell to the floor, opening as it fell, pages rustling.
“The Loom. It wove us,” She told him, her eyes wide and unblinking. Her words sounded broken, almost mechanical, like she couldn’t quite figure out how to connect the syllables. The Doctor guided her to the armchair. Once she was seated, he sat in the chair opposite her.
“It’s not of your world, they made it.” She took a deep shuddering breath, her hands gripping the armrests of the chair. Something was rising inside of her, threatening to swallow her, overwhelm her,
“She is returning through the dark! The Bad Wolf rises!”
The weight fell upon her tongue and silenced her once more.