(This was something I had posted on the old board, which I have updated and revised.)
I put it off for so very long.
It terrifed me, even more than the naked schism itself -
That death, that loss of self, that becoming someone else-
Even when it happened to others I knew, familiar strangers who told me there was nothing to it -
Even when I was vouchsafed a glimpse of a dandy and a clown -
Still I put it off.
I lived so long, I was so much older then, when I was young.
But then came the Cybermen, and my old body wore a bit thin, and so I got myself a new one.
Becoming the dark, comical little man -
Never taken seriously, always three steps ahead of friend and foe alike.
Until the day came - I tried everything, but in the end, I had to call them.
And they put me on trial for "interference", that gang of hypocrites!
But they had a plan for me - exile on Earth, and a life as their handy errand boy.
But changes had to be made, changes they knew I'd never agree to -
And so they changed me -
I felt their fingers in my mind, making me giddy, and so they re-made me into...
The dandy - elegant, aristocratic, a gentleman adventurer.
Part of me chafing at the invisible chains they bound me in -
Sometimes I think they sent him to Earth just to keep me occupied-
But another part of me was happy to have a home, a place - even an Establishment - to belong to.
But then came Omega - and they set me free, free to roam to Metebelis III -
Where I found a new death, and the courage to face it.
Where there's life there's hope, and with new hope came new life -
Life as an alien jester, a bohemian, boggle-eyed with new wonder at the world around me.
A long life - the longest life - life stretching out like an unending scarf.
UNIT left behind to explore the universe, hitting the heights.
But heights are for falling from, and the longest life came to an end.
The end - but the moment had been prepared for.
The Watcher - shadow of a future self - came as death's herald,
Until we two became one, and the one became...
Young, and fresh, redolent of cricket and spring afternoons.
A young man in a crowded TARDIS, but always shadowed by death, death always striking close.
Until finally it struck home, dying to save a woman I barely knew.
Is this death? It is. Faces swam before my eyes, and then - Adric? But Adric was dead, and so was I.
And so came change - and it seemed not a moment too soon.
Turmoil - a riot of clashing colors reflecting a riot of clashing emotions -
An unstable regeneration and trial by a shadow self -
And then almost anticlimax as the TARDIS crossed the Rani's path, and the shock led me to become...
The dark, comical little man revisited.
Old plans come to fruition, friends and foes, pawns in a timeless game of chess.
Malaprops hiding the master manipulator, always plotting, always looking ahead -
Until San Francisco - the one time I wasn't looking where I was going -
And I walked straight in to a hail of gunfire.
By Grace was I almost killed, and by grace I was reborn.
Young at heart - lordly again in stolen clothes.
The Master dealt with - and then so many adventures, so many companions, heard but not seen.
Storm clouds on the horizon then became the deluge.
War with the deadliest enemy - I avoided it for so long,
But on Karn it caught up with me, and I made the fatal choice, to become
Doctor No More...
I became the Warrior, growing old in body and spirit, fighting unceasingly
Until all of time and space were burning. Time war, becoming worse and worse,
Watching helplessly as my people slowly but steadily became as bad as what we were fighting.
In the end, I was forced to commit atrocity, in the name of peace and sanity.
I seized the Moment, and the Daleks were gone, and Gallifrey with them. Reality seemed to wear a bit thin...
And so I came to Earth - whole in body, wounded in mind and soul -
So much of what I had been stripped away - an outsider from a planet with a north.
And then I met her - she who was to become so dear to me -
She with whom I nearly crossed a line I'd sworn long ago never to cross.
But then they rose again, and she saved me once more, and
Gladly I gave a life to save her, and with a smile and a joke I left her with one word -
"Barcelona". And with that word, I became a new man - so much younger, now that I was old.
Pin-striped suit and a rockabilly style, we would travel time forever -
Except it was not meant to be - but of course, they never last.
And the Daleks rose again - and then Rose again, and a false death - a second self born.
The man I could never be - exiled to the life I could never have.
And yet I sensed the next rebirth would not be aborted - the eleventh man,
His hour come 'round at last, slouched toward the TARDIS to be born.
Who would he be? Who would I be?
Elegant and lordly? Bombastic clown? Fresh-faced and young?
Or would the dark man who hides behind a smile come again?
In Victorian London, I thought I was shown the answer - but instead it was another false self -
A man so bereft that he wanted to be me - if he only knew!
Then I broke the laws that I had once lived to defend, and for my sins, I was forced to lose her again,
And the old man who was so much younger than I was knocked four times, and I knew the change would come.
I fought it so hard - harder than I had since the first time - I didn't want to go!
But still the change came, and as the TARDIS whirled out of control, I realized one important thing -
Legs! I still had legs!
Now I was an old man in a young man's body, with comedy hair and a pointy chin.
I met the Girl Who Waited, and the boy who waited for her.
In Manhattan, I lost them to the Angels, and withdrew from the world,
Until the Impossible Girl drew me out of my self-imposed exile.
Through her I was drawn back to the time of my greatest crime.
With my other selves, I seized the Moment once again, saving my people
And sealing them away - like a painting,
Drawn to Trenzalore, I spent centuries fighting to prevent war.
My Impossible Girl intervened with my people - my victory came with a gift and a price -
A whole new life-cycle, but farewell to youth. I became -
Old, Scottish, with attack eyebrows and new kidneys - I didn't like the color!
Legs! I still had legs!
Updated and revised.