Mars. Womble requested Mars. Truth be told, even he looked surprised to have that particular red planet/chocolate bar noun tumble out of his mouth. Still, I aim to please. Or succeed. Or survive. Have fun, bare minimum, gotta have fun.
(Thank you Cyndi Lauper for limiting the genders.)
Tricky though. Mars and ‘fun’ aren’t exactly synonymous for a good, ooh…fifty centuries after the 21st. Unless you happen to have a fascination with red dust, NASA scrap and whatever Dr Manhattan left behind. Charming bloke. Hated the TARDIS though, said it was “too easy”.
Still, something about Mars calls to Womble. Perhaps it is the rubbish left behind. All my discarded chewitts wrappers littering the control room have cleared off, and I’ve already scanned for scavenger mites. No traces of “unusually tall underground-overgroundians”.
Anyway, to inject a little fun from the words “Hang on!”, I’ve set the TARDIS on ‘Shuffle’. We’ve got space, but the time’s out of my hands. (Again.)
Eight levers, seventeen buttons, two panel kicks and one Womble-served curse later, the blue box lands on Mars, slap-bang in the middle of…ah, the 77th Century.
“Coming?” I call over to Womble, who was currently trying to get right-side up from between a chair and a hat-stand. As I approach the doors, ready to wrench it open, he manages to get sorted and make a noise of apprehension.
“Don’t worry,” I reply, throwing the doors apart. “They added an atmosphere roughly…three thousand, five hundred and twenty one years ago. Give or take. Might’ve been there to lend a hand, actually.”
Hands thrust into long coat pockets, top hat on, confidence levels: acceptable. This is how you enter a planet…plus the company of a mysterious time anomaly, whom recently likes discussing rhinos and killer whales. Apparently.
77ThC Mars isn’t too bad, as it happens. Earth stubbornly lives on. Very full though, by now. Leading to all the claustrophobic people moving to Mars. No word of a lie. I mean, where else do you go when a planet’s full? Certainly not underground. So, with claustrophobia levels at an all time high – involving many rich celebrities as well – they banded together and pooled resources to build a HUGE (obviously) Mars base, and a slightly smaller, yet still HUGE ship to get there.
That was about the 7200s, so this project of theirs has done well for over 400 years. Trouble is, Earth always continues to get busier; and claustrophobia rises. In time, this base of theirs will have to consider going on the defensive. Fortunately, the TARDIS-shuffle got us here a bit before that.
Womble joined me at the doorway, to look upon the exterior of Open Space (under which someone had scrawled ‘Not Literally’.) I was sceptical about this trip, but I’m rather interested now we’re here. I’d love to hear a claustrophobic’s views on a bigger-on-the-inside ship, and Womble will no doubt want to find some entertainment.
Here goes, then. Mars…and claustrophobia…