Chapter Three, Part Three: Auld Lang SyneMature

She raises her hand and thwacks his hair with a quick slap. “Watch your language! I won’t have that child learning your foul habits!”                                                                                                               

The injured man just stares, dangling the spoon from his lips like a confused pack animal.

 “You’re Mamlaurea!” he manages with narrowed eyes after choking down that first big monstrous bite. 

Then his hand smacks to his forehead, leaving a red palm print and two crossed eyes. 

“Ow- that was stupid of me; I’m still weak from Kenny’s mission statement.” he groans, setting the spoon down shakily back into the bowl perched in her frumpy fingers, albeit as he sways like a reformed teetotaler atop his pile of rugs and pillows. 

When he trusts himself enough to open his eyes again, she is still there, holding the bowl in one hand and waiting, unsmiling but bright eyed as a shark in her silks of yellow and grey. “Harumph! Dense as always and full of talk! As if I could be anyone but your loyal nurse, old fool! Rest yourself. The food will keep indefinitely; the notion of this place was your whim, after all.” 

He laughs then, heartily and wide and high. And for her, his flighty peridot eyes hold the welcome sparkle of spring water. “You know, you haven’t faded a bit since then, you sweet old thing...” he breathes, reaching out to cup her wrinkled brown face, and then his face darkens as he considers the question he must ask her. 

His shoulders slump. He takes a sagging breath, then opens his mouth. “Do you know what year it is on Gallifrey right now?” 

The old nurse stiffens and stares, turning her neck on its collar like a questioning bird.  “My Lord Other, have we bruised our head as well?”

The End

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