Adric Shrugged
A TTR Fiction

"Hey, Dead Boy!" the Sixth Doctor's voice bellowed, trying to get
the bartending lad's attention.

Adric inwardly winced at the nickname, but turned toward 6Doc
anyway as the latter swaggered to the bar.

"Another pint!" demanded the rotund timelord, slamming his glass
jovially on the counter.

Adric sighed, and wordlessly took the Doctor's proffered
tankard. He turned away from the timelord, took two steps, then
stopped once more as a thought struck him. Abruptly he turned
back around and examined the larger one over critically,
considering. Then a slightly rebellious smirk overtook one side
of his mouth, and he held out his palm. "Um, your keys, Doctor?"

6Doc looked at him, confused. "My what?"

"Your TARDIS keys." he responded, firmly. "I can't let you have
any more until you've handed them over. You know the rules."

6Doc looked indignant. "But... I am NOT drunk."

Adric gave 6Doc a matter-of-fact, blank expression. "Perhaps,
but you understand we're not suppose to take that risk anymore.
Remember that incident with the DeLorean? The last thing we need
around here is another lawsuit..."

"Oh, just hand them over." 3Doc said from behind the other
Doctor. That timelord placed his wine glass on the counter,
which Adric filled from a bottle of sherry tucked strategically
underneath. "It's his judgement call, and if he thinks you've
had too much then it's his right to call you on it."

"Too much? Just one pint is too much?"

Adric's face was blank, but his hand remained open and insistent.

"Oh, all right." 6Doc finally grumbled, then handed the lad the
chain and key from a pocket even more of an eyesore than the
young man's outfit. Adric glanced at it to make certain it was
the correct instrument, placed it on the shelf behind the bar,
and departed to draw him another pint.

"He's starting to act insolent again. Insolent and impudent."
6Doc gnarled, then continued in a sarcastic tone. "The next
thing you know he'll be reading Ayn Rand..."

"You mean, like that?" The Third Doctor pointed to a dog-eared
paperback on the shelf behind the counter.

6Doc stared at it for a moment, blinking his eyes in complete
surprise, as if a bluff had been unexpectedly called. Then he
shook his head. "Oh. Wonderful. Just what we need around here.

Another barman with an attitude problem. Whatever it was that
was on their minds when they gave him this job..."

"Well actually," 3Doc commented drily, "as I recall we're the
ones that gave it to him, and at the time didn't give him much of
an option." He took a sip from his sherry. "Besides, he's not
doing all that badly. All things considered, that is."

"That doesn't excuse impudence."

"Yes, well... You might try calling him something other than
'Dead Boy' for a change, and then see how well he gets along."
And with that, the Third Doctor stepped away and returned to the
bridge game he had just taken a break from, leaving the Sixth
Doctor staring at the counter with a silent, eyebrows-furrowed

6 June 2001