The planet’s second sun had finally set, and the Citadel glistened amber from the burnt orange night sky. The snow-capped mountains silhouetted the cloudy landscape and silver leafed trees rustled softly in the cool breeze as the novice was lead out to the wastelands, oblivious to the surrounding beauty. He was but a child, barely 8 years old, but of an age to test his suitability for the Academy…
He glanced back up the slopes of Mount Perdition, to his home. The eternal fields of crisp red grass rippled across his father’s land. The intense urge to abandon his initiation and to run back to sanctuary weakened his legs. He fell to the ground, his clammy hands gripping handfuls of grass as he landed. The sweet scent from the sward intensified his longing to return home. He could feel the uncontrollable welling of tears in his eyes. He was preparing to bolt, when he felt a hand gently rest upon his shoulder. He wiped his eyes on his sleeve, clearing his tear filled vision revealing the kind smile of one of his Time Lord escorts helping him back to his feet. This was the first time he really observed the detail in his Guide’s ropes. The flowing waves of blood red material, the gold coloured collars embossed with Old High Gallifreyan Script, such elegance.
The boy continued his trek through the outlands, in the Continent of Wild Endeavour. By now the Capitol was nothing more than a distant sparkle on the horizon. In a clearing he could see two more red cloaked Academy Cardinals, surrounded by burning torches, sinisterly illuminating their surroundings. They gave a courteous bow as the apprentice approached, filling him with importance. He imagined he was the Lord President entering the Panopticon on a ceremonious gathering.
He was aware that each step he took became harder the closer he got to the Time Lords, like walking through deep mud. The energy was overwhelming as the Time Lords stepped aside, revealing a portal behind them. A vortex of emptiness and isolation before him. Scared, he turned to one of the Cardinals who just smiled and indicated to the gateway. He stood upon the Seal of Rassilon, staring into this tear in the fabric of time itself. The Untempered Schism. He now realised why his friend ran from his initiation, an act he had considered doing himself.
He stared deep into the raw essence of eternity, absorbing its vivacity. He could hear the vortex speaking to him, at first as a whisper, a gentle beat in a rhythm of four. He felt his twin hearts mimicking the sound which drew nearer and nearer, louder and with greater intensity. Vivid images of death and destruction now danced around in his mind’s eye. Great worlds and Civilisations burning, and all by his hand. Madness took over as his brain swelled from the continuous din, pushing against his skull, the pain but also the pleasure… the drumming. That was it the continuous sound of drums!
His destiny was finally revealed… he was ‘The Master.’
That was purely my adaptation of the birth of the Master taken from facts revealed from the programme. I just thought it would be nice to start off with something slightly different.
Named as the Doctor’s nemesis, The Master, a renegade Time Lord was not mentioned in the programme until the Doctor’s Third Incarnation. He first appears in an episode called Terror of the Autons and then a further four times in the Mind of Evil, The Claws of Axos, Colony in Space and The Daemons, all during the Doctor’s exile to Earth. His dark portrayal of this evil genius was played by the actor Roger Delgado.
Sadly, Delgado died in a car accident shortly after the filming of Daemons. The character is not seen then until The Deadly Assassin, when the Fourth Doctor, abandons Sarah Jane Smith and returns to Gallifrey upon receiving a summons from the Time Lords. The Doctor soon discovers that the signal was actually sent by the Master to lure him there and frame him for the murder of the Lord President. For unknown reasons at this time the Master is a burnt skeletal creature coming to the end of his final regeneration. It was stated that he was found in this near death condition on the Planet Tersurus by Chancellor Goth who brought him back to Gallifrey. In the 8th Doctor Novel ‘Legacy of the Daleks’ written by John Peel, it is explained that the Doctor’s Granddaughter, Susan, caused the Master’s condition by detonating a Dalek super weapon in the Master’s possession before fleeing in his Tardis.
Unable to regenerate any further, The Master adapts a method of taking over people’s bodies. This is first witnessed in The Keeper of Traken, when he murders Tremas, Nyssa’s father played by Anthony Ainley. He continues as the Master appearing in episodes with the Fifth, Six and Seventh Doctor. Survival was the last story to see both the Doctor and the Master up until the 1996 TV Movie. The Master is tried on Skaro by the Dalek’s and sentenced to death. The seventh Doctor, following the instructions of the Master’s last will and testament, takes his remains back to Gallifrey. However, during this journey he manages to sabotage the Tardis forcing a crash landing on Earth on the eve of the Millennium and sparking the Doctor’s next regeneration.
It is during the Last Great Time War that the Time Lords resurrect the Master for battle, being the ultimate warrior. However, a scared Master flees as the Emperor Dalek takes control of the Cruciform on Gallifrey. Using a Chameleon Arch he turns himself human and hides at the end of the universe adopting the name Professor Yana. During the Doctor’s 10th persona he receives a message from a dying Face of Boe, ‘You Are Not Alone’ (YANA). This was not the first time this message has appeared in Whovian history. Russell T Davis, when writing about the Time War and the effects it had on the Doctor, states that this was inscribed in hieroglyphs on the side of a mountain on the planet Crafe Tec Heydra.
The Doctor, Martha and Captain Jack Harkness travel to the far end of the Universe where they find the remains of the human race in a small colony on a dying planet. They are in search of Utopia as a means of a new beginning. It is there the Doctor discovers Yana. The Master’s memory returns when the Chameleon Arch is reopened and he steals the Doctor’s Tardis. The Doctor has time to fuse the coordinates only allowing the newly regenerated Master to travel to 21st century Earth. (Derek Jacoby plays a great Professor Yana/Master twisting from a sweet old man to pure evil).
John Simm carries the role of the Master through the next two episodes, The Sound of Drums & The Last of the Time Lords. The Master is shot dead at the end by his wife, Lucy Saxon, who he married whilst posing as the Prime Minister, Harold Saxon. Despite being dead, this does not stop the Master returning for the last episode of the 10th Doctor The End of Time, when a strange Cult manage to revive him. The episode is thwart with World Domination, multiple Master’s, Time Lord’s, regeneration and an explanation to the Sound of Drums…. But I won’t spoil it, watch it yourself!