Title: Magnificent Endeavour
Fandom: Doctor Who
Characters: The Doctor, all incarnations
Summary: The Doctor has a secret hobby.
Word Count: 400
Disclaimer: I don’t own Doctor Who, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
There's a room in the TARDIS not disturbed by a single breath of air, where gravity remains constant, where the climate never deviates and dust is unheard of. It's the only room in the whole transdimensional space and time machine where up will always be up, no matter how much the rest of the TARDIS might tumble through space. This room never tilts so much as a gazillionth of a millimetre; if it did, it would ruin all of the Doctor's painstaking work.
You see, everyone needs a hobby, even a nine hundred and something year old Time Lord. The Doctor has tried just about everything once, and some things multiple times, but he always seems to come back to this.
He long ago lost count of just how many decks of cards he’s used in the construction. Playing cards are one of those things you just seem to acquire without ever having to buy them. Everyone has at least one deck that they can’t remember where it came from, they just seem to follow people home and take up residence in a convenient drawer, always there for those boring days when there’s nothing to do but play solitaire.
Every so often, the Doctor finds a deck of cards in one of his pockets, and when he does, he comes down here. What started as a simple tower of cards getting on for a thousand years ago now defies imagination, it’s become a vast and intricate monument to countless hours, even years, of patience and superhuman dexterity. No mere house of cards, this, nor even a castle; it’s a cityscape built solely of small, seemingly flimsy rectangles of cardboard, held together only by gravity, and luck, and maybe a fair bit of advanced geometry, each angle precisely calculated to provide maximum stability. It almost dwarfs Gallifrey herself for sheer grandeur and magnificence.
Over the centuries, a simple hobby has become a labour of love, and even though decades sometimes pass between visits, the Doctor will always come back to this hidden chamber. This is his masterpiece, his magnum opus, his private obsession; only he and the TARDIS even know it exists, and that’s how it must remain. Because if anyone else were to find it, the whole majestic, ridiculous, impossible creation, would surely fall, and the Doctor doesn’t know if he would have the heart to start all over again.