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Swing to the other side

I knew it would eventually come to this. It's been on my mind ever since I decided to do this, and after talking with a friend, I think she's right. No, it's nothing important - it's a writing decision - but certainly something that's been bugging me for a while.


I've decided to retcon the character change I made to David in "Discovery" and remove the broken psychic power thing that I gave him. I wrote way back in June that I had reservations about giving him this power, which, if you don't know, is an extremely overpowered psychic ability (telekinetic and telepathic) that hurts him if he uses it and that he cannot control. He finds out about it in "Discovery", and then in Repercussions, decides to use it to save a bunch of people from dying and nearly kills himself in the process. The rest of that story then deals with what happens, since he basically came out of the closet, revealing that he's an alien to his friends.

So far, my use of it felt like a one-trick pony: give him this one difficulty so that later on, a different story has something to work around. So, I've been trying to think of how to use it in other stories, and I've come up with a complete blank. The problem is that it's so overpowered that it overbalances any story I can think of. For example, I wanted to have David, the Doctor, and Jenny go on an adventure. What could possibly happen on that adventure that David couldn't get them out of? They get locked in a prison? Oh, easy, just TK the lock (or, well, blow the door out) and they're out. David has reservations about using the power, and yes, it hurts him, but then the story just becomes an endless monologue about why he won't use it this time. He does have the neural inhibitor to stop him most of the time, but why have this trait at all if all you're going to do is find ways to not use it?

I could continue to work with it, but I don't think it's worth the effort. David is a much more interesting character without it. He's already got unusual traits that set him apart from the Doctor and Jenny: his inability to regenerate, his schizophrenic moral system, and (though I've never made it explicit) his perfect time-sense - like perfect pitch in music, he always knows when he is and how much time has elapsed, which is something I've never seen depicted but, in my opinion, must exist among Time Lords, even if it's rare. He doesn't need more than that.

Retconning "Discovery" means that I have to rewrite "One End, One Beginning" and Repercussions. The first shouldn't be too hard. Part of it was written to depend on David's psychic strength, but I think it can be adjusted to be explained by the normal connection the Time Lords have with each other. Repercussions is going to be far more difficult. The outing of his alien status was very spectacular and ended up incapacitating him for quite a while, giving his friends a lot of time to argue over him without his input. I've figured out how to out him more subtly, but not how to remove him from the picture long enough for the argument. It's an interesting exercise though. Hopefully, this will result in a better story, as well as bring David back in line with the rest of the characters in the universe. And if I really want to work with David in that configuration, I can spawn a different AU off "Discovery" and go on yet another tangent with that character. I do love him. :)

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Comments

a_phoenixdragon
Aug. 24th, 2015 11:48 pm (UTC)
Fine points, honey. It was a great idea, but it would quickly overwhelm the awesome characters and worlds you have created. Good choice. Still wish it could have worked out, though.

*HUGS*
shivver13
Aug. 24th, 2015 11:58 pm (UTC)
Well, you know, sometimes you have to try something to figure out the problems it poses. I still like the idea and may explore it in an AAU - an alternate-alternate universe! ;) But there are many other stories about David (and Will!) to tell, and I don't want them to be bogged down by this problem. David has enough things going on to keep him busy for a while.

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