Gallifreyans have an array of different vocalizations besides (verbal) speech!
You can say hello or you can chuff, which can seem threatening but isn’t. It’s a couple puffs of air, like ché’shé, or chff’ff humans can mimic it but can’t pronounce it quite correctly, which is endearing.
three sounds gruff but they’re actually being friendly and saying good morning
Growls and hisses are not interchangeable!
Hisses-agitation, often used to get attention. Usually a hiss is short and accompanied by a telepathic mood modifier. A nonverbal equivalent of ‘hey!’ and other interjections. Can be involuntary.
Growls-when you have someone’s attention, conveys acute displeasure, with an aggressive connotation. Growls resonate through the chest, hisses don’t; as they’re made differently, a growl can accompany speech vocalizations. Growls are almost always voluntary, and are considered uncouth.
ten hisses in mild irritation; zagreus growls
as with just about everything, context matters!
Gallifreyans can and will make pretty much any sound humans do; yelps when you stub your toe and whining when you see the milk’s gone sour, humming a tune that’s been stuck in your head all day, etc.
Facial expression and body language is easy for humans to pick up on; it’s similar to humans (and most humanoids) and many people pick up on ear-cues very quickly. Really, a lot of their body-language is very mammalian and, while it may be in a different context and with more sophisticated nuances, it’s not difficult to learn.
i didn’t get into telepathy here, that’s a whole ‘nother thing
You grabbed your satchel, Bowie knife, silver bullets, and your 9mm, pulled your beanie tight over your head of curls and headed West.
You were an orphan. Left alone to survive because a werewolf of all fucking things, slaughtered your family.
You hitchhiked across the country, did unmentionable things to earn money, hustled, played craps in the alleys, stole.
It was one night when you were short on cash that you decided to hustle two drunkards in the pool hall. You had won and were counting your winnings when they cornered you outside the dive bar. The first one grabbed you by the arm and twisted it just so you couldn’t get away, the second one pushed you up against the chilled brick, his whiskey sour breath tuning your insides.
His hand slowly moved down toward your jeans and that’s when you grabbed your knife, jabbing him in the groin, and then throwing a punch to the one holding you at arm’s length.
A shrill whistle and a woman’s voice among with a gun aimed at both assholes, stunned you.
“Walk over to me now, kid, I’ll take it from here.”
She was a woman in her early 40s, a pixie cut, and a…sheriff’s badge? Shit, you thought to yourself, I gotta make a run for it.
As if she could read your mind, the sheriff waved her gun, “it was self defense”. She said she was going to call for backup, as she cuffed the two and made them sit againt the bricks.
“Got a name”, she asked.
Reluctant, you made one up on the spot, might as well be someone you weren’t. You hadn’t been you in along time.
“Jody Mills”, she offered her hand, which you again were hesitant to take, but did so regardless.
“Got a place to stay?” she took in your dirty jeans, greasy hair, and sunken eyes.
“I’m fine, you mumbled, “am I getting arrested or am I free to go?”
Jodi pitifully smiled, “Darlin, I got two girls around your age, a bit wayward, a bit lonely, a whole Hella stubborn.”
“You’ve got skills with that knife, and I’m going to guess you can use that 9mm in your waistband with efficiency,” Jodi chuckled at your shocked expression.
“Trust me, we all have stories, I’m just giving you the once in a chance lifetime to make good choices.”
“I could eat,” you shrugged, “you cook?”
“Honey, I do it all and then some.”
“I’m not making you any promises,” you spoke gruffly.
Jodi Mills really let the laughter out at that response, “Neither am I.