Chapter Twenty-Six, Part Two: Weekend at Borges'Mature

 He looks down at the golden ring on his finger. It’s a simple band, carved in the style of a poesy, its slim length encased in thorny vines and topped by two crossed rosebuds, outfacing and twined. Must be some kind of time ring, the way it calls to him, whispering. 

“You didn’t. And you did. Now go.” 

 She reaches across his arm to press the interlocking buds carved on the ring; they set in with a tiny click, and the Master’s body begins to vibrate out of itself, creating echoes of him everywhere. One echo, he notices, is impaled on a shard of glass sticking up from the TARDIS’ clockwork-façade temporal engine. The shard is nearly straight up; it must have been the one Flamina… 

“And oh yes,” the dowdy librarian muses as she places one hand against the Master’s silver mask, motherly as she drapes rosy tippets from brown monk’s sleeves in his congealing red-orange blood, “…did I mention? There’s one thing that’s absolutely essential to the device’s ability to sidestep the physical laws of your own personal timeline…” 

She caresses his face, as a fissure he can’t see creaks past his fingers. 

Krik-krak. Krik. 

His eyes follow the line of his bleeding hand. The drying blood is shivering on top of the glass, flaking in shapes like rose petals that flutter down to land on his skin. His mind envisions clear water half-filling a tumbler as he looks at the tiny bits of blood, dry or drying, and some still wet. They’re still falling on him, jarred from the flat surface by little waves of energy and sound. That water… it’s about to shudder, and that shudder means…

The End

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