The ‘Doctor Who – Brilliant Book 2011’ certainly lived up to its name, as did the 2012 edition, and it is a shame that we didn’t get one for 2013. In addition to behind the scene information there were nice little pieces of fiction that fleshed out the first season of the 11th Doctor.
One of these sections was a page full of teasers for the future of the Doctor, delivered by the Dream Lord. Some of these hints came to pass, including the first instance of the words ‘the only water in the forest is the river’ which hinted at River Song’s true identity.
Not all of these hints did occur, at least not yet. This means they are rich in material that can be mined for your own campaign. Here are a few of the best:
Find The Lady Before She Finds You
This could refer to the card game, also known as three card monte. Players must keep track of the Queen of Hearts as three playing cards are shuffled. It is frequently part of a confidence trick, using sleight of hand and misdirection to ensure that the player can never select the correct card.
This might suggest an adventure in a deadly version of this game, with the PCs lives at stake. Alternatively they could goad the opposition into taking part in a game, with the fate of the world at stake.
It could also suggest an adventure in which the PCs are being hunted by the Lady, with deadly consequences if she catches them. Since the PCs are challenged to find her there must be some benefit to finding her first.
You could bring time travel into it, with the PCs hunting down a younger version of the lady. It could be that if they find this version they can prevent her from becoming a menace in the future.
“I Won’t Take Calls From THAT Prime Minister”
This probably refers to the Doctors habit of taking calls for help, so presumably this quote comes from him. We know this can’t be Winston Churchill so who might the Doctor not want to talk to?
This might refer to Harriet Jones, another prominent Prime Minister in the Doctor Who universe. Would the 11th Doctor still hold a grudge for her actions in ‘The Christmas Invasion’, especially after her sacrifice in ‘Journey’s End’?
It might also be Harold Saxon aka The Master. It could be that after being elected the Master found that as Prime Minister he had access to the Doctor’s phone line. He may not be able aware that it is the 11th incarnation that he is contacting.
Combined with the line “Margaret! Come Back!” this could suggest the call is from Margaret Thatcher. She would a controversial choice but 1980s London could be good time period to explore.
This could link with the line ‘4 August 1982 – Happy Birthday Ma’am’. The Queen Mother was born 4th of August so could indicate that she is also involved in the same adventure. This wouldn’t be the first time that the Royal family have been included in a Doctor Who adventure.
Regardless of who it is there is mileage to be gained from exploring why the Prime Minister is calling and what the consequences are of the Doctor refusing to listen to them.
“12 Years On And Rory’s Still Terrified of Granny Grainger”
This could add some much needed back story to Rory (who usually is only ever seen in context to Amy). Who was Granny Grainger and what did she do that terrified him? Why is this relevant now?
The simple route could be to have a monster that feeds on fear assume the form of Granny Grainger.
It could also be that Granny Grainger was unnatural, just as Ace sensed that there was something evil at Gabriel Chase. An adventure could be based around either encounter Granny again or travelling into the past to deal with her while Rory was young.
The Shuddering Brethren, They’ll Stick In Your Mind
An evocative line for a new race that you can introduce into your game. They could be the polar opposite of the Silence, a race that you can’t stop thinking about. This could take the form of obsession, worship or a form of infection (not unlike the Weeping Angels ability to convert others).
This could be linked to the line ‘“If I saw them walking down the high street what would I think?””I don’t think you’d think anything at all Amy.”’ This might mean that the Shuddering Brethren can prevent people thinking altogether.
The Bones Of The TARDIS
We have seen the heart of the TARDIS but what about its bones? This could refer to the structure of the ship, which would relate to its transcendental nature. While heart can relate to a things nature or motivation its bones usually relates to its fundamental basis.
Bones usually conjures to mind concepts of death. Finding the bones of the TARDIS could be something akin to finding its grave. What we see in ‘The Name of the Doctor’ is its outer shell meaning we might find the rest of its interior at some later point.
What Awaits The TARDIS At The Zero Point?
This is ominous and suggests that whatever is at the Zero Point it will have consequences for the TARDIS. This could be a good question for the PCs to learn ahead of time. It can lead them to speculate what Zero Point might be.
It could be when a major historical event occurs that causes huge changes (the zero point of that chain of events) or it could be a physical place (maybe the centre of the universe) or another dimension. It is so flexible it could be the name of trending night club.
PCs could either seek out the location to try and answer the riddle or try to avoid it (only to find that the words keep appearing where ever they go).