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things you said at the kitchen table

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The Doctor lurched inside and slammed the door behind them, hauled themself to the console leaning heavily on the railings, and deadbolted the remote locking mechanism. Just for good measure they pulled another lever to send the ship into the vortex. Only then did they notice that the whole TARDIS smelt of beef soup and baking bread.

They pulled themself upright against the console, smoothed out their clothing and hair the best they could, and tentatively stepped in the direction of the smell, muffling an oath the first several times they had to put weight on their left leg. By the time they were halfway down the corridor, they had stopped even grimacing every time and the limp was barely visible.

"Thought i heard you arrive!" The Master didn't turn round from the cooker where he was checking the progress of several things. "All sorted?"

By now the Doctor could smell every ingredient and it was making them desperately hungry.
"Yes, well... Nearly." They'd reached the closest of the chairs at the kitchen table and were grasping it just a little too hard.

"But we've taken off." It wasn't a question.

"Yes." It wasn't an answer.

The Master spun round, with the faintest whirring of gears that only the sharpest hearing would notice.
He pushed a soup plate, brimming with real earth meat, vegetables and broth, in front of the Doctor. He took a loaf from the oven with his bare hands (silicone skin over metal framework) and set that on the table. Only now did he look them up and down, microcameras taking in and processors filing away: dishevelled hair, battered coat, uneasy stance, white knuckles on the chair back.

Only when the Master turned away again did the Doctor sit down, folding their tall frame into the low chair and wincing as they drew the hurt leg under the table.

He joined them, without a plate. For a little while there was only the sound of the Doctor attempting --and failing-- to eat calmly and quietly. The Master sat absolutely still and seemed to stare off into the distance in thought; perhaps this was a screensaver face and he'd put the machine part of himself into resting mode. And perhaps he was still noticing and speculating on every little thing. When he shifted as though he were about to ask another question, the Doctor swallowed and changed the topic.

"This is delicious. D'you really still like cooking, now that...?"

The Master's eye-mech managed to convey the inanity of the question. "You're lucky you remembered to include olfactory sensors. And I had some broth earlier." They knew he meant he'd 'tasted' his recipe and spat it back out, lest the salt or the acidic juices corrode his inner mechanisms.

Having eaten well for the first time in days, the Doctor started to relax, and almost immediately felt their body's delayed reaction to the recent exploits. They slumped forwards holding their head between their hands, hoping to look pensive instead of desperately worn out.

The Master gave them a long glance. "Let's have a look at that leg before you rest."

The Doctor's head snapped up. They'd tried so hard not to let on.

"Good job this floor isn't real lino. All that blood would leave such a stain."

They craned round to look under the table and saw, indeed, a smallish pool of dark-orange viscous liquid forming under their heel. "Blast it! I quite liked these boots..."