fic_of_fork: (Default)
[personal profile] fic_of_fork
Word Count: 2755
Summary:  Echoes of the past spill into the present, when the Doctor crash lands on a planet he's never visited. A crossover with the Warcraft universe in World of Warcraft.  Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] zurcherart, [livejournal.com profile] persiflage_1,  the Hoopy Frood, and [livejournal.com profile] mtemplar_fic   for the betas!
Warnings: More spoilers for the Death Knight quest chain
Rating: PG
Characters: Tenth Doctor
Genre: Action/Adventure, Crossover, General
Author's Note:  More spoilers for the Death Knight quests
Disclaimer:  I don't own Doctor Who, Torchwood, Bernice Summerfield, or any of its characters, and I'm receiving no profit from this beyond the joy of writing.  While I raid with a level 80 warlock, I don't own World of Warcraft, either.

Chapter 1, Prologue


Several hours later, the Doctor's elven friend carefully balanced two bowls of soup as she walked them over to the small table where the Doctor sat. He was so absorbed in his work, he didn't see her as she slid a bowl of soup at him. From a pocket, she pulled a couple of day-old rolls. She was starving, but that was all she could afford after buying a new set of cloth armor from a tailor for the Doctor. His suit was soiled beyond repair by the mob, and it had taken a good blacksmith to get a few of the dents out of her armor. That service had dwindled her modest amount of gold even further.

She dipped a chunk of bread into her soup and studied the Doctor. He said he didn't need bags to go into his new pack. On the table was a pile of things he had carried with him--where she hadn't a clue--and his old trousers. He was undoing the seam with a nail file and removing the pockets. Glancing up, he noticed the food.

"Cheers!" he said, as he took a few spoonfuls of the soup. As he worked on the seam, he said, "That was a very brave thing you did back there in the king's antechamber."

She shrugged and pushed stringy bits of meat around in her soup. "Bravery had nothing to do with it."

The Doctor leaned back from his task and studied her for a moment. “It was brave to stand there in the midst of your former enemies, ones that would sooner kill you than listen to your side of the story. You're the better person, in my eyes.”

“Thanks for that,” she mumbled.

“When the King—what was his name, again? Wyrnn?--read the letter from Fordring, he had written that you had 'the soul of a champion.'”

“Damned, more like,” she said.

“Bah,” the Doctor countered. “There is no good or evil. Only the choices we make, and you couldn't make a choice. I've seen a fair share of mind control in my travels, and you were hardly to blame for the things you did. If anything you should be proud—you triumphed over evil. Because the person you are—right here and right now—is the only thing that matters.”

Quieter, she whispered, "My name is Amylith."

"Pleased to meet you, Amylith," the Doctor said, smiling. He noticed that she was now wearing a black tabard over her armor. On it was a large sword with the same runes as the ones she had on her own sword. “That from your hometown's footie club?” he asked, as he gestured at her tabard.

“Safer to identify myself as a Knight of the Ebon Blade than not, I think,” Amylith admitted. Some of the other patrons shot dirty looks in her direction, but otherwise kept quiet.

"So what will you do now?"

"I'm not sure," Amylith mused. "I can't go back to Darnassus--that's where I'm from. Even though the King's proclamation said that I--and the others like me--are to be treated fairly, I don't think they'll want me back in the Alliance's forces."

"There's more like you?" the Doctor asked. He'd cut out both pockets by now, and was sticking things back into them.

"Where have you been? Did you miss the news about the battle for the Light's Hope Chapel? The necropolis, Acherus, was besieging the area still held by the Scarlet Enclave. That was our purpose--to crush the Scarlet Enclave and the Argent Dawn."

"Back up," the Doctor said. "Forgive me for being rude, but just what are you? I've never seen the likes of you before, and that's saying something, given the places I've been. And I've been just about everywhere. Everywhen, too. Well, by that I mean my people have."

Amylith boggled for a moment. In a hushed whisper, she leaned toward him and said, "I'm a Death Knight." People next to them overheard and instinctively moved their chairs away from Amylith and the Doctor.

"I take it that explains the black armor and demonic horse?" the Doctor quipped.

"The time before--when I was still alive--I don't remember well. It's coming back to me, but it's still hazy, as if it happened a lifetime ago. I think I was killed in the Eastern Plaguelands. Next thing I know, I'm above those lands in Acherus swearing fealty to the Lich King, himself. But it was as if it were happening to someone else. You know, like I was in a nightmare and just couldn't wake up."

"You were raised from the dead and controlled by this Lich King?" the Doctor asked.

Amylith looked uncomfortably at some of the other patrons, who were glaring them with disgust and antipathy. "Please, not so loud about him in here... In short, yes. We were sent to fight against the paladins led by Tirion Fordring, himself, and here's where I don't quite remember what happened. I remember there was a sword--the Ashbringer, but it was different than I saw it when Mograine wielded it. Mograine was the Highlord. Now I guess you could say he's head of our band, the Knights of the Ebon Blade. His sword—the Ashbringer--was pure, uncorrupted. Next thing I knew, I was my own person and we were taking back Acherus. And now you know as much as I do."

Finally when the table was clear of the Doctor's items, he took the shoelaces salvaged from his trainers and tied each pocket shut. These he put into his new pack. "Sorted!" he shouted, startling a few patrons. He then attacked his soup with gusto.

"So what about you?" Amylith asked. "'The Doctor' isn't a name."

"I beg your pardon," the Doctor said between mouthfuls. "It most certainly is my name."

"The name your mother gave you?"

"Fair point. Now I'm just 'the Doctor.'"

“So you're some sort of healer?” she asked.

“Nope. Not that kind of doctor,” the Doctor responded. “Scientist, that's me.”

“Oh, a mage,” Amylith said, realization dawning.

“No, science. Not magic,” the Doctor corrected. “Facts. Elemental forces. Natural laws.”

“Yeah, magic,” Amylith agreed. “What school is your specialty? Arcane?”

The Doctor sighed and realized the truth of Arthur C. Clarke's statement about advanced science being indistinguishable from magic. “Time,” he said with resignation.

“Wow. Are you a bronze dragon? Your secret's safe with me. You said you weren't human, and it's rumored that they can shapeshift,” Amylith whispered conspiratorially.

“Not a dragon. Not a mage. Time Lord,” the Doctor said. “Although this isn't the first body I've had. Not certain you'd call me a shapeshifter, although a good friend of mine is a Whifferdill. Seen any talking penguins lately?”

In the doorway, a long shadow of an armored demon darkened the pub, while a small figure no bigger than a young child in dark robes waved and cheerily greeted everyone. The publican groaned. “Oh no. We don't serve your kind in here. Go back to the Slaughtered Lamb, where you belong,” he said. “Can't trust Gnomes. Can't trust bloody Gnome warlocks, either.”

“Warlock,” Amylith mouthed to the Doctor. He looked quizzically at her, and she made a circular motion around her ear with a finger that was understood the universe over.

Stretching up on her tip-toes, the warlock placed a gold coin on the bar. “I'm a bit thirsty after a long ride,” she explained. “No hard feelings about the trouble last time?” Two more gold coins appeared beside the first.

“You take your meal and you leave,” the publican growled. “No fear spells in my pub. This is a family establishment, and it's bad enough we have to serve the likes of her in here,” he said as he gestured towards Amylith.

The warlock's demon picked up the hot meat pie and cup of beer the warlock ordered and obediently followed his mistress. She skipped over to the table Amylith and the Doctor shared and gestured at the empty seat. “Mind if I share your table? No other seats open,” she said.

“Be my guest,” the Doctor said. Amylith sighed and looked away.

The demon carefully put the food on the table and gently lifted the warlock up to the seat, then stood silently and obediently behind her.

“Crixie,” she said, shaking the Doctor's hand. “Crixie Gearshank.”

“Delighted,” the Doctor said. “I'm the Doctor, and this is...

“Amylith,” she offered, and then looked away, hoping that Crixie would forget about her.

“Who's your friend?” the Doctor asked, as he motioned to the demon.

“Oh him? He's just a demon under my command. I was only doing the bartender a favor,” Crixie said, gesturing at the publican with a spoon. “Bar fight broke out, and I cast a fear spell. Cleared the place out. You'd think he would've thanked me.”

“A misunderstanding, of course,” the Doctor said sympathetically.

“Of course!” Crixie agreed.

“I couldn't help but overhear—I'm new to Azeroth—that you're a Gnome. Would you happen to know where I might be able to obtain a good chunk of crystal? The kind you'd use for a power relay,” the Doctor said.

Crixie scratched behind an ear. “I've never been one for engineering,” she admitted. “But you'd likely have better luck either in the Outlands or at the Exodar. The Exodar's clear on the other end of Kalimdor—that's the other continent—and the Outlands are beyond the Twisting Nether.”

“Another planet?” the Doctor asked.

Crixie nodded. “Well, sort of. It's in another plane. I don't know if you can reach it through the Great Dark. There's a portal in the Blasted Lands. The Great Dark is the void between worlds,” Crixie patiently explained since it seemed to her that the Doctor was a bit slow. “Believe it or not there are other worlds out there. I've been in Northrend and seen the evidence of one such race, the Makers.”

“I'm a Time Lord from Gallifrey,” the Doctor said. “I know all about interstellar travel.”

Absentmindedly he watched as two male figures who looked similar to Amylith, but with pale skin, entered the pub and began wandering from table to table. While the Doctor was speaking to Crixie, they made a beeline for the table. They came up behind the Doctor, and each grabbed one of his arms, hoisting him from the table.

“You've been summoned,” one hissed at him.

“By Soridormi, herself,” the other completed.

“And who would she be, when she's at home?” the Doctor snapped. “Easy, no need to be rude.”

Amylith stood, her hand hovering near her sword. The demon behind Crixie unsheathed a gigantic axe, and she hopped down from her seat, after carefully wiping her mouth with a napkin.

“I think you want to let him go,” Crixie said, while catching Amylith's eye.

The first man laughed and ignored Crixie. “You've been mucking about in time and dimensional travel and you don't know Soridormi, the Prime Consort of Nozdormu?”

“No,” the Doctor said. “I haven't a clue what you're talking about. And time travel is my right, thank you very much.” A red mist began to seep up from the floorboards as Amylith unsheathed her sword.

“Come with us, and you won't be harmed,” the second man said.

“Nobody is going anywhere,” Crixie commanded. She had changed into the shape of a tall purple demon. With a roar, fire erupted around her new form. Various bar patrons fled in terror at the sight of her.

“I meant what I said, warlock!” the publican yelled. “You four—get out of my pub!” Before he could leave his spot by the counter, the pub exploded in strange lights and the sound of clashing steel.

***


By the canal, a lone person with a cloak pulled tightly about his body despite the warmth of the day sat and fished in the shadows of a huge stack of crates, sheltered from view, although he could see the entrance to a pub between crates. His head turned, as he heard the sounds of a battle raging in the nearby pub. It wasn't his business, he reasoned. He was here merely to observe and fish. He was done with the ongoing war and all the various political struggles, but something disturbed him in the way the two High Elves dragged the struggling man from the pub.

“You killed them!” he snapped at his captors. “In cold blood, no less!” One of the elves silenced the man with a blast of arcane energy that hit him squarely in the chest, knocking him unconscious. Then both elves changed into the shape of gigantic bronze dragons. One grabbed the unconscious man in a claw, and both flew off.

He carefully packed his fishing pole into his pack and, looking around to make sure he wasn't observed, changed into the shape of a lion. He padded over to the pub, and crept inside, thankful that nobody noticed. He had to act quickly, if he had a chance at saving the man's friends. He had no clue why he was rushing to help members of the Alliance, but there was something in the captured man's voice that implored him to help.

The pub was a shambles, and he picked his way through debris until he found an overturned table. On one side a Night Elf lay sprawled, still clutching her sword. On the other side, looking like a cast-off doll, a Gnome warlock lay. Again making certain he wasn't observed, he changed back into his normal form.

Towering above them, he gracefully sat on the floor besides the Gnome. There was still a spark of life left in both, and he could return their spirits to their bodies. He could heal them both and escape, since either would be too weak to turn on him. Quickly he began reciting the words of a spell he'd learned long ago. When he finished, a glow spread over the Gnome's body, and she sat up with a groan. He hurried to complete the same spell on the Night Elf.

Amylith awoke and found herself staring into the bovine face of a Tauren. She started, more from the shock of being helped by one of the Horde. The deep sorrow in his dark chestnut eyes kept her from reaching for her sword. Even a Tauren, he was still a druid, and she'd been brought up to respect them.

“Thanks,” Crixie muttered. “That spell cast on me always makes me feel a bit hungover.”

“You're welcome,” the druid said and then jumped in surprise. “Hang on, since when does a Gnome speak Taure-He?”

Amylith shrugged. “I figured you learned a bit of Darnassian in Moonglade.”

Crixie's eyes widened in wonder. “Wow! I bet that's one of the Doctor's spells. Do you think? Hey, Doctor, teach me how you're doing that, would you? Wait, speaking of the Doctor, where is he? And what's a Tauren druid doing in Stormwind?”

“Fishing,” the druid answered.

Amylith grabbed her sword and sheathed it across her back, while trying to pick up various things—including the Doctor's pack—that had been dropped during the fight. Wobbling on her feet, she said, “The bronze dragons took him. We need to get after them.”

“Ooooh! Did you catch anything good?” Crixie asked the druid. “I'm Crixie, by the way, and this is Amylith.”

“Not especially,” he admitted. “I'm Tain Proudhoof.”

“Sometimes it's fun just to fish,” Crixie acknowledged. “I like to sneak into Orgrimmar once and awhile. The fishing's not bad there.”

“I don't have time for pleasantries,” Amylith snapped, now at the end of her patience with both. “Thanks for helping me, druid. In repayment, I won't alert the guards to your presence. You might actually get out of here before the guards hunt you down and kill you for being in an Alliance stronghold.”

“Hold on...” Crixie said, as she woozily got to her feet off the floor. “He's a druid. We could get him out of Stormwind safely, and he could help us get the Doctor back. How about it?”
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