It had been some weeks since my little misadventure on Gallifrey, and I was standing in my makeshift Greenhouse wondering just exactly it was I should do about making my TARDIS seedling grow. I knew that it fed off Rift energy, which was why the Doctor was always parking himself in Cardiff, but I wasn't sure if the fueling happens before, after or during the growing process. He also mentions how, during their time in Pete's World, the TARDIS runs off the energy of the universe it's grown in, which was why it just stopped working when they fell into the alternate version. It was during my period of deep thought that I noticed a second sprout near where the first had been. With or without me, my TARDIS was well on her way to being fantastic.
I was in the kitchen, a short time later, having decided that trying to discover the secrets of the universe, or a single timeship at any rate, was impossible on an empty stomach. While raiding the fridge my stomach made a particularly loud rumble, and my youngest sister looked over at me from the counter separating the kitchen from the dining room. "When was the last time you ate?" she asked, watching me make my multiple sandwiches. "About two hours ago, why?" I replied, trying to get the tuna to stop running over the side of the bread. "Uhm, then are you sure you need two and a half of those?" I stopped what I was doing, futilely might I add, and thought it over. I had been hungrier than usual for the past month or so. After a bit of thinking back, which is harder for me than you'd think, I decided that it must've started right about when I brought my prize home.
Armed with my sandwiches, and quite a few questions, I braved the gloom that was early spring in New England. I walked out the back, round the pool, over the driveway and settled in the little nook between the separate garage and the fence separating our yard with our neighbor's. It was in this nook that I had set up a crude bench type table so as to place my potted time machine on top of it. The walls of my Greenhouse were made of the same type of energies holding the various realities separate, which basically means that I had an anti-theft Greenhouse. I had noticed how easy your typical greenhouse is to walk into. Taking a bite from my first sandwich I gave my TARDIS a look. "So," I started, mouth full of tuna and bread. "Why is it that I'm always hungry lately? This little setup I have here isn't nearly enough to have this type of effect."
The only answer I got, of course, was the steady humming sound that I had heard since I first laid hands on the thing. If she knew what was going on, she wasn't sharing the information. Steadily working my way through the rest of my sandwiches, I checked to make sure everything was exactly as I left it, then went back inside. It may be warm inside a Greenhouse, but it is also boring. Watching plants, and timeships, grow is almost on the level of watching paint dry. As luck would have it my nephew was sprawled out on the living room floor, nice and peaceful for once. One of the various Nick Jr. shows were running in the background, something we've all grown used to, and my momma was sitting in her chair. Coffee in one hand, cigarette in the other, she was making sure that trouble didn't get into any trouble. Mostly of the four-legged feline variety. "Hi, momma. What's for dinner?"
"Boiled dinner." was my reply. Don't ask me exactly what that is, cause all I know is it's some type of meat which is boiled along with potatoes and carrots. I think it's some type of pork, and I know it's all kinds of delicious. "Sweet." I said, walking back out of the living room. I turned at the door and headed up the stairs that led to me and my brother's room. Refusing to even glance into the room of no return, I made my way through my room to my bed. I do most of my best living on my bed. Fiddling with the laptop's mouse, I called my baby out of his slumber and set myself on a wild quest to try and answer the question of this anomaly's anomaly. Of course, being an anomaly basically means that there isn't any prior record of it, so the internet failed me. Sighing in defeat, I gave it up as useless and headed back downstairs.
"Time to let the doggies out!" I heard my mom say, using the sing-song voice most people use around babies. That's my nephew's job, helping grandma let the dogs outside to do their, ahem, business. I jogged to the back of the living room, where the windows would give me a grand view of the back yard, and made sure the furry beasts stayed away from my nook. Even if they couldn't get into it, I wasn't about to take the chance that the impossible might happen. It's not every day that a TARDIS gives you explicit permission to steal it. Well, people who aren't either the Doctor or I. I watched as the dogs made their way around on the same path I had taken earlier, and stopped to sniff at where the barriers were holding the chilly breeze at bay. Feeling my tummy about to rumble again, a mere two hours after the sandwiches, I turned back from the dogs in their doggy ways, and headed into the kitchen yet again.
I had gotten sick of having to make food all the time, so I had decided that I'd have to rely on my ability to live off of liquid for a short time. I had developed this nifty little trick during my days working at a particular retail store, mostly because my gluttonous self wasn't used to not being able to eat for long-ish stretches of time. So I made sure I had a bottle of some type of soda nearby so I could trick my stomach into thinking it was being filled when, in fact, it wasn't. Opening the fridge, I found a nice large bottle, 3 liters in fact, of orange soda. Grabbing it, I turned and found an equally large mug and filled it up before heading back upstairs. Biding my time until I could pass out without being called lazy, I watched some Magic School Bus. If there was one reality I wouldn't mind crashing, it was that one. A school bus. That can turn into anything. Really. Anything you could imagine. Even living things. If I didn't already have a TARDIS I love to death…
Sipping my liquid meal as slowly as I possibly could, trying to make it last as long as possible, I flipped back and forth between a few things online. I was in the middle of reading a web comic I follow when I found my vision blacking out. I let my eyes stop focusing and just waited until I could see again, it not being the first time I had found this happening to me. Usually it's because I stood up too fast and the blood was rushing from my head, but sometimes it's happened for no reason. I went back to my comic and soda sipping. After my drink was, sadly, gone I decided that I wanted to eat something after all. I went by my tried and true favorite for those times when I need something to munch on, but lacked the motivation to actually make something. Grabbing a package of saltines I went into the living room to see what everyone was watching now. It seemed as if Dora had bowed out, and had been replaced by Diego. Personally, I like Diego more anyway, so I wasn't complaining.
Eventually, read twelve at night, the baby passed out and we were able to change the channel to something we wanted to watch. This was my cue to head back outside, because I made it a point of saying good night to my ship before I went to pass out myself. Call me dumb, but you never know with these living space/time ships. They might appreciate the gesture. When I got to the nook, I passed through my little barrier and took the two steps to the potted time machine. I checked to make sure the dirt, shaved metal mixture stuff was damp enough and then turned to leave. "Well, g'night sweetie." I said, heading away. I got dizzy though, and had to stop before I fell down. That's when I felt it, the pull on my reserves. "So that's why I've been starving all the time lately!"
I was being sucked dry, so to speak.
And that was how I came to find myself mostly bed ridden for the duration of my TARDIS' growth cycle. I couldn't move too much, or I would get dizzy. Eventually, stopping the motion ceased to make it go away, so I had to stay in bed. Or, in this case, on the couch like an ill person. My sister brought me stuff to eat regularly, after I took her into my confidence about what I had growing out back. There's nothing so satisfying as having someone else go to all the trouble of making sure you're well fed. Especially when the person you've recruited actually likes to cook. I watched more kid's shows than I ever wanted to, and had my nephew using me as a mattress more times than I could count, but in the end it was worth it. I had a fully functioning TARDIS, with a few improvements. Because she had fed off my energy, she also had the ability to go anywhere in time, space, and reality! Something told me our maiden voyage was going to be something.