Gather round all you children and listen, every one,
Of a Time King from Galliby and how his fame was won.
His name was The Doctor and he saved us from death,
As he averted disaster with almost his last breath.
It all began with a crash as loud as you please,
A crash that shook the TARDIS and brought The Doctor to his knees.
The shields had been down and the ship unprotected.
It's no wonder that the crash was not deflected.
The Bow of a ship plowed into the room,
Ship and TARDIS merged together like the Nile in Khartoum.
The Doctor reacted quickly as often he did,
The walls repaired themselves as the ship from them slid.
When all was repaired and the damage undone,
The Doctor thought to himself, that this could be fun.
He'd check out the ship to see what was doing,
Little did he know, this would be a day he'd be ruing.
He opened the door to survey his moorage,
He seemed to be in a room intended for storage.
He came out of the closet, in the literal sense,
To find himself surrounded by a party intense.
The celebration was familiar, but oddly not so.
It seemed like a Christmas party with garland and bow,
But none of the revelers seemed to be from Earth,
In fact far away was the place of their birth.
Far out in space, beyond all we know,
Lies a planet of people, a planet called Stowe.
They traveled far and wide to see how others lived.
They celebrated other cultures and copied what they did.
So they named their spacecraft after an earth ship of old.
Not knowing the danger that a ships name can hold.
They knew The Titanic was a name well renowned,
But didn't know then that most aboard her had drowned.
A man named Max Capricorn had chosen the name.
He'd supposedly done it on account of its fame.
Was there some hidden reason for choosing that one?
It's something we'll find out before this tale's done.
The Doctor milled through the crowd, taking it in,
He loved the festivities and reveled in the din.
He questioned the Host to find out the news,
Of what was going on, but it blew a fuse.
The Host were all robots of metal and plastic,
Though, they were all breaking down and acting quite spastic.
What was causing all this to happen?
Maybe it's time to check in with the Captain.
But, before we reach the bridge, we have to detour,
To meet a nice waitress who's dropped to the floor.
She's run into a man, not very nice or well bred,
We won't go into his threats or all that he said.
Suffice to say that he was causing all kinds of racket
Because of what the waitress had done to his jacket.
Still, she ignored his rudeness and let it all pass,
As The Doctor knelt down to help with the glass.
Her name was Astrid as she told The Doctor,
He introduced himself as they got up from the floor.
They started a conversation about why she'd traveled,
The Doctor caught on and her dreams he unraveled.
He told her he was a stow away on a ship away from Stowe.
She was surprised at first and thought he should go.
But, in a moment she repented and started to think,
It would make much more sense just to get him a drink.
He sat down at table with Morvin and Foon,
As he heard laughter coming from across the saloon.
Some rude passengers were laughing at this simple poor couple.
Meanwhile, The Doctor was up to causing some trouble.
The Doctor took out his Sonic Screwdriver and pointed it back,
Suddenly the Champagne top flew off with a crack.
The rude people were covered all over with wine,
As the Van Hoff's invited The Doctor to Dine.
Oh dear, I'm going off on a tangent bizarre,
I meant to tell you about The Captain, come on now, the bridge isn't far.
The Captain comes in and orders everyone away,
It seems an odd thing to do at the end of the day.
Still, he tells them all to go and get themselves Rum,
They all hurry out anticipating the refreshment to come.
All except one and he is called Frame,
He stays to assist as the Captain asks his name.
Frame isn't suspicious, at least not yet.
Although the Captain himself seems to be upset.
We won't learn just yet, what the Captain is planning,
Nor about what Frame sees on the radar he's scanning.
We need to get back to The Doctor, who's ready to go.
It's time for shore leave on the planet below.
Morvin is there and Foon and the rest.
As The Doctor puts his psychic paper once again to the test.
The Doctor invites Astrid along for the trip,
She's eager to go and get away from the ship.
Then someone comes running to join this manner of departure,
A little red man who's named Bannakaffalatta.
They go down to the Earth which is strangely deserted,
There are no people in London and The Doctor's disconcerted.
He and Astrid ask the only man in sight.
They ask him what has happened to cause this strange flight.
He explains that it's empty because of what people remember.
London's had bad luck on the 25th of December.
Aliens called Sycorax and The Empress of Racnoss,
But the Queen has stayed in London to show them who's boss.
Suddenly the Doctor's back on the ship,
He wonders aloud what's caused this short trip.
It's blamed on a fault, but The Doctor doesn't believe.
He's a trusting person, but still very hard to deceive.
He sets out to find out what's wrong on the Titanic.
He discovers the shields are down, but tries not to panic.
He hails the Captain on the bridge to let him know what to do.
The Doctor is ignored as he's seized by the crew.
The Doctor tries to warn the passengers about the danger ahead,
As through the saloon he is forcibly led,
His warning is heeded by some, but too few.
They try to free the Doctor from the hands of the crew.
Meanwhile, back on the bridge, this danger's no game,
The Captain is doing nothing, but not so young Frame.
He tries to reactivate the shields before it's too late.
But The Captain is already at peace with his fate.
The Captain warns Frame to back away from his work,
But this young man from his important task will not shirk.
Young Frame's hand is poised over the lever to pull it,
As the Captain stops him right in his tracks with a bullet.
Frame staggers away and falls to the floor on his hip,
As the meteors hit and damage the ship.
As the flames course through and engulf all the fallen,
It begins to look like a disaster movie a la Irwin Allen.
Oh, boy. I could hardly stand the suspense,
It's was all I could do not to pee in my pants.
Who had survived and who had burnt up and who was now floating around out in space.
Don't worry now children, our hero survived with not even as much as a scratch on his face.
Astrid was okay and Mr. Copper and Foon and her mate,
Rickston and Bannakaffalatta had a similar fate.
The Doctor made sure everyone was alright,
But, as the steward opened the hatch, they got a terrible fright.
The Steward was killed, he couldn't be saved,
But The Doctor could help the others if they behaved.
He hailed the bridge and contacted Frame, our young friend
And told him what to do for the engines to mend.
Then off they all went for the Bridge to attain,
I'm used to suspense, but this is insane.
They started climbing the steps and found a fallen host on the stairs.
Morvin and Foon jumped at the chance to help with repairs.
The rest tried to clear the passage for those who weren't lean,
While Astrid discovered that Bannakaffalatta was part machine.
They got engaged, well sort of, and they continued through the wreckage to sidle,
Until Frame tells The Doctor that the Host are homicidal.
The host are killing people from kitchen to stern,
It's not an easy thing for young Frame to learn.
He runs to the door as the host come down the halls.
Frame shrieks like a girl. Does this guy have balls?
He deadlocks the door 'cause he's scared all alone,
He can't help it, he's never been all on his own.
Meanwhile, The Doctor knows of the threat,
He won't back down till this danger's been met.
The Doctor leapt to the rescue to help Morvin and Foon,
As the host grabbed Morvin's throat and he started to swoon.
The Doctor ran up the stairs and pushed Morvin's big Ass,
So that through all the wreckage, he safely could pass.
The girder fell onto the head of the host,
I needn't tell you that he was now toast.
Our team of survivors ran into a room,
That shook, creaked and glowed and was as vast as a tomb.
A tiny slim bridge of metal and wire,
Was all that stood between them and the fire.
It had to be crossed, it had to be done.
Though it wouldn't be easy, it wouldn't be fun.
Before anyone attempted the trip, Morvin misstepped and fell to his death.
It happened so suddenly that Foon lost her breath.
What would she do now without her Life's love.
She was like a hand now devoid of it's glove.
They tried to console her, but it couldn't be done,
Now came the time they must cross, every one.
They started across and Rickston made it quite soon.
The rest began the journey except now, for Foon.
She couldn't be persuaded and had lost hope with her love.
Suddenly, though, the Host were coming at them from above.
They came all at once and threw their halos like Xena,
Astrid struck one out of the park, you shoulda seen her.
They all lifted pieces of metal as bats
They all swung valiantly, but were cornered like rats.
Copper was cut and The Doctor was too,
They were in trouble now what would they do?
Suddenly, the cyborg stood and was heard to boast,
He'd save the day from this un-heavenly host.
He opened his shirt and flashed the whole crowd,
As the host were shorted out, their heads were now bowed.
They fell from the air and fell down the shaft,
The host were defeated as The Doctor turned and laughed.
Well done Bannakaffalatta he cried,
Meanwhile Bannakaffalatta fell with a sigh.
His energy was dispersed, left there was none,
This was his last stand, his journey was done.
In sadness his transmitter was taken from him,
To use as a weapon against the host foul and grim.
One host now was left as he rose to his feet,
Even one host could this small band defeat.
The survivors looked on and lost all their hope,
But luckily Foon had hung onto her rope.
She lassoed the host and jumped to her death,
She killed the last host as she breathed her last breath.
The survivors moved on saddened by the loss,
But at least the chasm they made it across.
The Doctor discovered that the Host were perverted,
By a madman and so his path was diverted.
He sent the others to continue until their journey was done
As he went down to see what was on level thirty one.
The Doctor was taken by the Host to their leader as bidden,
The Doctor went along to find out what was hidden.
He needed to know who had caused these attacks,
He found out soon enough it was a man who was named Max.
Max Capricorn had come up with a plan,
To destroy the ship and the Earth and with it every man.
All for his benefit, all for his gain,
What a twisted and sickeningly selfish type brain.
Max was a head,
No, literally, his body was buried and dead.
He was ensconced in a moving metal case,
Which made him especially creepy to face.
This, while above Astrid worried aloud,
How could she help The Doctor all independent and proud.
She grabbed a teleport bracelet to help her go below.
She'd come to The Doctor's aid, this waitress from Stowe.
Meanwhile, The Doctor was distracting this villain most vile,
Who wanted to kill The Doctor without a trial.
He shuts down the engines through a relay,
As the Titanic's orbit begins to decay.
So, Astrid comes forward like Ripley in the Sequel,
She's got a forklift and she's mad as hell.
She slams in to Max and pushes him back,
That's when the host go on the attack.
They cut the brake line on Astrid's vehicle as onward she's borne,
She's desperately trying to defeat Capricorn.
She lifts up his transport and pushes him aside,
Onward they go until they're over the side.
Then Astrid is falling and nothing can be done.
The Doctor screams out, but her race is run.
There's no time to waste, the ship is still falling.
There's no time for tears, there's no time for stalling.
The Doctor grabs onto the host and travels up fast,
I can't stand the suspense, I hope it will last.
He breaks onto the bridge and jettisons the ballast,
As he gets on the phone with Buckingham Palace.
The queen must be warned, Elizabeth not Elton,
As down the grand stairs in her slippers she's pelting.
She runs out the door with corgis in tow,
To see what new horror this day would bestow.
The Doctor's at the helm, and boy is he pissed,
He's got it under control and the Palace's just missed.
The Queen shouts up to thank the Timelord,
As over the ocean the spaceship is soared.
The Doctor gets the ship up and back in the skies.
He thinks of Astrid and how she met her demise.
Then suddenly an idea pops in his head,
He might be able to save her, she might not be dead.
The teleport bracelet should have saved her as she fell,
Hope might not be lost, all might be well.
He tries to reassemble her atoms all jumbled,
As among all the wires and switches he fumbled.
It's only a shadow of her that comes back at last,
It can't be enough to undo the past.
So, The Doctor releases her out into space.
But, he'll always regret that last look on her face.
Our tale now is done, and I hope you'll agree.
That this Christmas tale was something to see.
The Doctor goes down to Earth with Copper in tow,
He's made it alive, but without much to show.
Copper's got money and can live on the Earth,
But The Doctor must travel for all that he's worth.
He can't be tied down or held to account,
He wouldn't be happy for any amount.
So, let's leave this sad Timelord to travel through space,
And remember The Titanic and all that she faced.
Remember that it was Astrid who has defeated this foe,
And that just like Rose said to Jack, so now says The Doctor, " I'll never let go."
By Harold Nickerson
Thanks to Martin Lowe for the "clockwork" design used on these pages.
Doctor Who and the TARDIS are
copyright © the British Broadcasting Corporation.
No attempt to supercede is made here.