We won, you know, Doctor.
He says the words with a deep sigh of relief as he gazes out over the Earth. Littered with the Toclafane; screaming humans beneath cowering in their homes or shelters or wherever they're hiding.
Stopped the War, you did. Did you realize you were going to do that? Oh, of course you did. You wouldn't have done it otherwise.
He puts his forehead against the glass and takes a breath. His fingers beat out the drum against the wall again and again.
So much pain. So many lives just taken. He turns to look at the withered tiny creature sitting in the birdcage. Snuffed out. All in the name of ending a War.
"Please." The creature in the cage hisses. "Please. Stop this."
The creature. The Doctor. Small and shriveled, holding every single one of his 900 years on is face and body. Hardly even living at all. The Master loves it. Loves to see him so defeated. Even had a tiny version of his suit stitched up for him. No trainers, though. Not as if something that frail and tiny could run anywhere anyway.
Stop what? Another War? Oh, but Doctor, this time it will the human race, standing tall! Everything you ever imagined coming true. You should be thanking me! The way he speaks it's almost enough to make one believe he really means it.
The tiny creature in the cage moves to his feet. The bones are twig-like and poke out against the transparent grey skin. His veined hands wrap around the cage bars. He aches, just from those movements. Every bit of him aches. It's like every emotional pain he has felt now registers physically. He hurts.
"Never through this. Never through violence, Master. You can stop it." The words come out in a hiss over the stretched skin across his teeth. He sounds like he's begging. He's sounded that way for a year, now.
Would you have me stop it the way you stopped our War? The Master stalks over to the cage. How you wiped out our people. How are they any better? They're just as pathetic! Burn them all! He smacks the side of the cage and it swings violently from its wire, tossing the creature inside about. The creature cries out in alarm, and stays firmly to the bottom of the cage to prevent falling.
You should thank me for changing you. You've become what you always were, Doctor. A very small, very insignificant monster. The Master pours himself a cup of tea and sits as if the outburst from a moment earlier had never happened.
They will be liberated, Doctor. I will liberate them as you could never. He returns to the window and stares. The creature inside the cage attempts to stand again but changes his mind, dropping back down and waiting for the Master to leave. He knows that another toss about the cage will probably break one of his tiny bones and he can't imagine the Master will heal him.
That is the way the Master has always operated. Stop those against him from ever rising in his presence out of the knowledge that they'll simply fall. At this realization, the creature moves back to his feet and grasps the cage bars.
You never did learn, Doctor.
"This isn't liberty," the creature hisses. "This is just death."
One of your humans said something about liberty and blood. Surely you remember that. The Master laughs. Quoting themselves like the arrogant prats they are. I'd rather their liberty came with blood. They learn faster that way.
The creature's eyes dart to the countdown. The Master could never resist a ticking clock. A liberation is about to happen in several hours, but there will be no blood.
Muse: The Doctor (Ten)
Fandom: Doctor Who
Word Count: 606