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An Adventure With Aliens

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"So...what are we looking for, exactly?"

"You'll see. Keep looking straight up."

"You know I haven't got much of a neck, Albino Pirate!"

Ignoring the Pirate With Gout's comment, the Albino Pirate grabbed Charles's pocketwatch yet again. Only half a minute to midnight - it always happened at midnight.

Charles yawned, partially because he was tired and partially to get his friend's attention. "Can't we do this another - "

"No! It's about to happen! You must keep looking up!"

"We don't even know what we're looking for."

"You'd call me silly if I just told you about it." The Albino Pirate was straining his neck in a desperate attempt to look at the spot of sky directly above him. "Only a few moments more." Three, two, one...

"...There!"

The Pirate With Gout was unamused. "There what?"

"There, there! Right above me! Didn't you see it?"

"No," his friends said in unison.

"Well...well, look again! It's easy to see - "

"That you need to get more rest," Charles interrupted.

The Albino Pirate's face fell. "I thought you two would see it."

"Perhaps another time," answered the Pirate With Gout. He and Charles climbed out of the crow's nest, down the rigging and back to the deck.

The Albino Pirate remained, angry in his own eccentric way. It wasn't his fellow pirates that annoyed him; he knew in his little pirate heart that even if they had seen this strange event, they would have been unable to do anything about it. No, it was the mystery of it all which he was upset about. Not knowing why this happened or how. What he really wanted were the answers to such questions.

At that moment, something occurred which had never occurred before.

A strange noise found their way to the Albino Pirate's ears. It was faint and rather far away, but he could make it out. It came from the sky, and it was unlike any of the sky noises which he knew of. Or any regular noises, for that matter.

Vworp, vworp, vworp.

No sooner had the sound faded away than a brilliant light abruptly appeared in the sky. It was quite sizable, and it was moving across the heavens at a rapid pace.

The Albino Pirate grinned. Why hadn't he ever thought of making a wish?

Quickly closing his eyes, he mumbled his request under his breath. "I wish someone would tell me why the stars are going out."

He looked up again. To his surprise, the shooting star was still on the move. It was getting larger, and brighter...

...and closer.

He abandoned the crow's nest in a flash "HELP, HELP!" he shrieked, running around in circles on the deck. "I've made the wishing star angry and now we're all going to DIE!" The Pirate With Gout poked his head out of the hold. "Now what are you going on abouAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!"

The star was on a collision course with the Pirate Ship, and it was time for the collision part. But rather than blowing its target to smithereens, it bounced off the roof of the Pirate Captain's cabin and rolled across the deck, narrowly missing the Albino Pirate and banging into the mast, where it finally stopped.

When the boat finally stopped shaking, the crew poured from the hold onto the deck. Most were still in their pajamas, and everyone was chattering at the top of their lungs. "Are we sinking?" "Do they have quakes at sea?" "Didn't I tell you all they'd get around to inventing cannonballs that you drop from the sky?"

All talk stopped when the cabin door slammed open. Out strode the Pirate Captain, clad in his nightgown and slippers and carrying a quivering Polly under his arm. "Is everyone alright?" he asked urgently. They thought so. "Then what's happened?"

The Pirate With Gout pointed to the Albino Pirate, who was currently trying to see how invisible he could make himself.

"Albino Pirate?"

The lad trembled. "A-All I did was wish on the star."

"What star?"

It was then that the pirates finally took a good look at the object which had attacked them. Some backed away in fear, while others stayed rooted where they were in shock. The Albino Pirate stepped forward in wonder. "I didn't think it would be so...like that."

Lying on its side before them was a big wooden box, tall enough for a man to fit comfortably inside and painted a deep shade of blue. It had windows which one could not see through, and the side of it that faced the crew was a set of doors. Words were printed above these doors; POLICE PUBLIC CALL BOX.

Maybe the wish had been granted after all. "Hello...?"

The box's doors abruptly flew open. Out came billows of thick white smoke, along with the sound of a voice. "What's gotten into you...?"

A man crawled out of the box and stood up. He was very tall and thin, with large eyes and hair that stuck up every which way. His clothes were brown and of a very odd cut, and on his feet were funny white shoes. "Donna, come out of there!"

A woman crawled out after him. She was also dressed oddly, and she had a face which seemed accustomed to scowling. "Have you ever thought," she snapped, "of getting a ship that can't steer itself?"

"Something was trying to control her. Or someone."

"They're worse at driving than you, then. Didn't think that was possible."

"Donna, this could be very not good - "

"It worked! It really worked!"

The two strangers finally noticed the Albino Pirate, who was jumping up and down with joy. "That was you?" the man asked, confused and a tad disappointed.

He nodded. "I wished for someone to come help, and now you're here!"

"Help with what?" The man's gaze moved from the young lad to the horror-stricken expressions of his fellow crew members. "Oh, hello," he said pleasantly. "Nice to meet you. I'm the Doctor. You wouldn't happen to have noticed anything strange recently, would you?"

The dumbstruck pirates could only nod awkwardly. The Pirate Captain felt for his cutlass, only to realize that he'd left it in his cabin. Barnacles.

"Now, if you want to survive, you all need to do exactly as I say - "

But before he could continue, a hand reached up from behind him and pinched him between his neck and shoulder.

The Doctor suddenly became very quiet for a moment before crumpling to the deck. Behind him stood Charles, who was trying not to quiver. "I...wasn't expecting that to work, actually."

"At least it did," said the Pirate With A Scarf.

The woman, who had been rather inattentive up to this point, now stared at Charles in shock. "Where'd you come from? And how'd you manage that?"

"It was just constricting blood flow and nerve responses to the brain, he's only unconscious - "

"You've shut him up."

He was properly quivering now. "I'm sorry...?"

"Sorry? I've been trying to do that for months! Think you can tell me how?"

The Pirate Captain found his voice again. "Don't just stand there, lads! Get her!"

They were upon her in an instant, grabbing her arms and pushing her towards the captain. "Now," he said, assuming an air of authority, "you can explain what's going on here, or else."

"Or else what?"

"Ye'll walk the plank!" said the Pirate With Gout, poking her in the side with his crutch.

"Oi! Ease off, Smee!"

He shrank back. "Pirate With Gout, if you please."

"Um...alright." She returned her attention to the captain. "Pirates? Could be worse, I suppose." She shook off the men restraining her and offered him her hand. "Donna Noble."

"The Pirate Captain." He took Donna's hand and gingerly shook it. "And you're from...?"

"Chiswick."

"Are the stars going out there?" the Albino Pirate asked.

Donna did a double take. "You've seen that, too?"

"Lots of times."

"What's all this about stars?" the Pirate Captain asked.

"It's a long story, and you're probably not gonna believe it."

"We've seen plenty of odd things, Miss Noble."

"Just Donna, please. Can we talk about this somewhere else? It's freezing out here."