"You’re on your own, Ace."
The TARDIS is invaded by an alien presence, and is then destroyed. The Doctor disappears.
Ace, lost and alone, finds herself in a bizarre deserted city ruled by the tyrannical, leech-like monster known as the Process.
Lost voyagers drawn forward from Ancient Gallifrey perform obsessive rituals in the ruins.
The strands of time are tangled in a cat’s cradle of dimensions.
Only the Doctor can challenge the rule of the Process and restore the stolen Future.
But the Doctor was destroyed long ago, before Time began.
- Moussaka and Chips
- Cat's Eyes
- Inside Information
- There's No Place Like Home
- Night School
- Non vultus, non color
- The Hollow Hand
- Telling Tales
- Daleks Don't Like Finger Biscuits
- Figures in the Smoke
- In Initio, ex Tempore
- Fragments of Now
- Tales from the Tongues of Fish
- Time and Again
- The Big Wind-up
- Mutatis Mutandis
- Future Imperfect
- The Banshee Circuit
- Time Revised
- The Frying Pan Option
- The Pythia's Curse
- A Flight of Stairs
- Spring Tide
- Moon Shadows
- An Eye for an Eye
- The Worst Monster
- Beginning Again
- The Children of Rassilon
to be added
Crew of the Time Scaphe
- Sphinx of Thule
- Rassilon created the Looms to save Gallifrey from potential extinction caused by Pythia's curse of sterility upon Gallifrey.
- The Process is called "Amphisbaena" in the Book of Future Legends.
- Rassilon the God was written by Cardinal Borusa.
- Pelatov's Collected Sageries
- The Doctor has never travelled into the past of Gallifrey.
Gallifreyan Chapter Houses
- The Doctor is one of forty-five cousins of the House of Lungbarrow.
- Sepulchasm is a board game on Gallifrey.
- Anmers-Tonastide was the Festival of the Timewright.
- Kithriarch equals "father" on Gallifrey before Rassilon.
- Treazant was the currency on Gallifrey.
- Pianalaika is related to music or bands.
- White sand was imported from Mirphak 2 to Gallifrey for the Games of Rassilon because it showed up the blood better.
- The Academia was a place of learning on Gallifrey.
- The Pythia were the ruler of Gallifrey before Rassilon.
- Pythia came from before the Intuitive Revelation which heralded the rise of Rassilon to power.
- The Court of Principals are an organisation on Gallifrey.
- The Council Police enforce the law.
- Neo-Technologists were aligned to Rassilon.
- Satthralope was house keeper in the Doctor's House on Gallifrey.
- Ace can swear in eleven alien languages.
- Logistomancer is from A32K.
- Aubert Cluster demand independence from the Pythia.
- Thule had an empire.
- The Process is an annelid with lamprey-like mouths at each end (termed "mouthfeet"). It moves by using alternating mouthfeet to pivot its body, moving not unlike a Slinky.
- The Guards are described as bipedal red insects, with twenty-four "optic nodes" instead of eyes. The Process can speak through them.
- Menti Celesti are "capricious and all-powerful", "who saw all things but did nothing".
- Tafelshrew is a rodent from Gallifrey.
- Gallifreyans battled the Gryffnae and hunted the lacustrine Sattisar.
- There is a plague of batworms on the asteroid archipelago.
- Pythia had a Grelladian guard.
- Jagdagians were performers in circuses.
- In a market Pen-Shoza traders displayed fresh consignments of workers from Oshakarm and the Star Grellades.
Theories and concepts
- The Doctor mentions Blinovictual Theory, most likely a reference to the Blinovitch Limitation Effect.
- Banshee Circuits are what the TARDIS uses to survive when everything else fails. It uses whatever resources are available: people, places, dreams etc.
- This is the first novel in the Cat's Cradle trilogy.
- This story was adapted from an unproduced television story.
- Time's Crucible leads directly into Warhead, implying that the Doctor was planning to deal with the Butler Institute after having a meal with Ace in Ealing before the Process broke into the TARDIS.
- The Doctor says he has never been to Alaska; however AUDIO: The Land of the Dead is set there.
- No natural born child exists on Gallifrey since Pythia's curse; however, PROSE: Cold Fusion and PROSE Lungbarrow question this.
- Ancient Gallifrey is also seen and described in PROSE: Interference - Book Two.
- The Sisterhood of Karn first appeared in TV: The Brain of Morbius.
- Lady Peinforte mentioned mysterious secrets about the Doctor in TV: Silver Nemesis.
- Ace does not like black cats, which were prominent in TV: Survival.
- This is the first time it is suggested that the TARDIS is to be piloted by six people. This was later referenced on screen in TV: Journey's End.
- Ace has, on previous explorations of the TARDIS, found the courtyard that was a central location in TV: Logopolis and the room of cricket supplies seen in TV: Castrovalva.
- The Doctor eyes window display mannikins with a mix of curiosity and suspicion, telling Ace, "Never be certain of what you think you see." (TV: Spearhead from Space)
- The Discontinuity Guide to: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible at The Whoniverse
- The Cloister Library: Cat’s Cradle: Time’s Crucible
- Bewildering References guide to Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible