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Don't you miss it?

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“Doctor?”

She shouted from under the console, “Ryan! Yes!”

Her companions were all sitting in the console room. Due to the lack of furniture, Yaz, Graham and Ryan had gotten bean bags from the library.

“We know that you’re alien, but you never told us what kind.”

“The nice kind, I’d like to say,” the Doctor responded unhelpfully.

Yaz clarified, “Your species.”

“I’m a Timelord. Or a Timelady now, I guess, but I was never that fond of the gendered titles.”

Graham huffed. “Your species is called Timelords? Well, that’s pompous.”

“Technically, it’s a subspecies. I’m Gallifreyan, you could say. And yes, it’s extremely pompous. But that about sums them up, the Timelords.” The Doctor was already thinking of a way to change the subject. This conversation began to take a dangerous turn.

“Is that your planet, Gallifrey? Gallifreya?” Yaz asked, testing out the word in her mouth.

“Gallifrey, yes.”

Something about her voice didn’t sound right, making her companions look at each other in confusion. Ryan shrugged.

“Do you go back there when you drop us off at home?” he asked.

The Doctor noticed it was too late to change the subject now, so she slid out from under the console, put her goggles up into her hair and sat up cross-legged to look at them.

“No.”

“Why not?” Yaz wanted to know. “Don’t you miss it?”

“I do. I miss it so much. But I can’t go back.”

Graham looked confused. “What? Why not?”

“Because it’s gone.”

Ryan frowned. “What do you mean, gone? A planet isn’t just gone, is it? That can’t just happen, right?”

“No. That can’t just happen. I … I made it happen.” She had to stop there for a bit. “There was a war. The Timelords against the Daleks, and so many innocent peoples caught up in it.”

“A Dalek, that’s the killer thing we dealt with, right?” Graham asked.

Yaz realized that too. “Oh. That’s what you meant by personal history.”

The Doctor nodded gravely. “They called it the Last Great Time War. There was so much suffering, so many people killed every day. And it was spreading. First the neighbouring planets, then the entire star system. And you don’t know the Daleks, you don’t know my people. Both would never have stopped, never. They would have fought until they had killed the whole universe. So I made a decision.”

“What did you do?” Yaz whispered, terrified. She should be, the Doctor thought.

“I’m not just a Timelord, I’m the last of the Timelords. Because I destroyed it. I blew up Gallifrey and the Daleks with it. Or at least, that’s what I thought.” Her nails digged into her palms. “They always find a way to survive. My entire race, gone, and they always survive!”

Her friends backed away a bit, all with an expression of fear on their face.

You made them afraid, a voice in the Doctor’s head whispered. They should be, another whispered back.