Sunday, January 28, 2007

Alixion Part Three!


The Doctor and the Abbot stand on a ledge, overlooking the arena.

Doctor: [moves forward] Obviously it’s a secretion of some kind, condensation of gases maybe?

The Abbot moves puts his foot out, tripping the Doctor. The Time Lord stumbles and plummets downwards, falling into the cavern below. The Doctor picks himself up off the ground and looks up at the Abbot on the ledge above him.

Doctor: [dusts himself off] Oh, it takes more than that to hurt me, Abbot! Just what exactly are you playing at?
Abbot: A game with high stakes, Doctor.

Doctor: And how high are they?

Abbot: Higher than you can comprehend. And you’re not playing any more. You’ve won the booby prize!

Doctor: Really? How very amusing!

A low chirruping sound becomes audible. The Doctor frowns and looks around the area he is in. there are various cave holes dotted in the walls. The noise is getting louder.

Abbot: You see, Doctor, this planet is inhabited, but not by human beings. I’m sure you’d like to meet the native creatures of Alixion – because they definitely want to meet you.

The chirruping reaches a crescendo, and a six-foot-long beetle emerges from the cave near the Doctor. Horned, with huge clawed hands and a slavering mouth full of thick, blunt yellow teeth. We see it’s POV as it closes in on the Doctor. The Time Lord inches away from the creature as it chirrups louder and scuttles towards him.

Abbot: Goodbye, Doctor.

The Doctor turns and breaks into a run. The beetle chirrups and roars as it scuttles after its prey. The Abbot laughs as the Doctor runs down the slope towards a cave exit. Just as he reaches it, another beetle emerges, waving its claws. The Doctor skids to a halt and turns to run back, but he is trapped.

Doctor: Ah... Hello! I’m the Doctor, how do you do?

The beetle pauses in its approach.

Doctor: As I thought... I would like to communicate with you? Can you understand me?

The Doctor is backing away slowly. The beetles are grouping together, watching him cautiously. The Abbot watches on frowning. The Doctor backs away slowly.

Doctor: You’re obviously hungry... Would you like a jelly baby?

The Doctor empties the jelly babies onto the ground and back away further. The leading beetle inches forward and starts to munch on the sweets, and then spits them out.

Doctor: [shrugs] Well, they are an acquired taste!

The Doctor turns and runs for the ledge. The beetles roar and then start to run, scuttling after him. The Abbot watches them, speechless with rage.

Abbot: What is wrong with you? Destroy him! Kill him!!

The Doctor has now clambered back onto the ledge. The Abbot grabs the Doctor and lifts him up into the air and shakes him violently. The Doctor slides out of his jacket and with a short series of blows, knocks the Abbot down onto the ledge.

Doctor: Excuse me...

The Doctor runs down the tunnel. The Abbot tries to follow, but a kick from the Doctor sends the old man sprawling. He falls backwards and into the open area. The beetles close in around him, jaws chomping. The Abbot hastily hauls out a medallion-sized heart-like shape that pumps. The beetles stop chirruping and back away. The Abbot sighs in relief.


The Doctor runs for his life down the passage and out of sight.


Michael continues to aim the blaster at Kate, who is sweating with fear. He grins at her discomfort.

Kate: [swallows] Well? What are you waiting for?

Michael: This and that. But you’re right, you’re right.

He prepares to fire when Gabriel leaps into view and strikes Michael over the back of his head with a staff. Michael collapses to the ground. Kate boggles, shocked.

Kate: Gabriel!

Gabriel: Shut up, Kate!

He runs forward and starts to untie her.

Kate: Gabriel, you saved me...

Gabriel: SHUT UP! My entire life has just gone to hell in a hand basket, all thanks to you! So – just – shut – up!

Kate nods. The monk unties her hands and they turn and run.


A barren rocky hole in the ground. Huge sacks are dumped around it. Kate and Gabriel run outside and collapse, panting.

Gabriel: Come on, let’s go!

Kate: How did you know I was here?

Gabriel: Instinct. I remembered you talking about it, and judging from your previous behaviour you were likely to be foolish enough to try and break in. And if your theory was right, then you were probably going to be tied to a chair and then executed.

Kate: Ah, thank god for smart clergymen.

Gabriel: Come on!

Gabriel grabs her and they run down a side tunnel and out of sight.


Some monks are setting up the area for the evening meal. Two of the monks Michael were with rise and head for the hallway.


The gates grind open, and the monks arrive. They see Michael sprawled on the floor and immediately runs over to him.

Archibald: Michael! Michael ore you all right?

Michael groans and the others help him up.

Michael: [woozy] The girl... got away...

Archibald: How?

Michael: She had help!

Timothy: The Doctor?

Michael: No, the Abbot’s dealing with him.

Timothy: Then it must be one of us?

Archibald: [sarcastic] Oh, you think, Brother Timothy?

Michael: But who is it? They attacked me from behind.

Archibald: And thanks to the Order of Koporahn we don’t know anything about who it could be.

Michael: There is one way of finding out.

Timothy: See is isn’t at dinner tonight?

Michael: [frowns] Yes. And even if they are there, the body language will give it all away to us. [grins] Heightened senses, remember?

Archibald: Which we won’t have if we don’t get the elixir ready for the evening meal. Come on, you two, let’s get to work.

The three monks start to make preparations, and start to pour the distilled liquid into the cauldron.


The cross-junction of two tunnels, with an extra one branching off. The Doctor runs down one corridor and looks around. He takes out, a double-headed coin, flips it, sighs, gives up and starts to walk down one tunnel. He stops, and chooses the tunnel next to it. Then, he changes his mind and heads into the first tunnel he chose. Immediately he runs into Kate and Gabriel.

Kate: Doctor!

Doctor: Kate! And Brother Gabriel, too!

Gabriel: We should keep moving.

Doctor: Why? What’s chasing you?

Gabriel: Nothing.

Doctor: Yet – I’ve met the native life form of Alixion. They’re responsible for the death of that poor monk.

Kate: But, Doctor, monks have been disappearing for months!

Doctor: Really?

A loud chirruping fills the air. They whirl around and see a beetle clambering through the tunnel towards them. they turn and start to run down the nearest tunnel and out of sight. Chirruping loudly, the beetles continue to follow them.


The Doctor runs into the cavern and looks around, interested. Gabriel and Kate enter. Chirruping noises can now be heard.

Doctor: Fascinating...

He opens a sack to reveal a strange mushy gunge. He scoops a handful.

Doctor: [peers at it] Very fascinating.

Kate: Come on, Doctor, let’s go!

Doctor: Kate?

Kate: Yes, Doctor?

Doctor: Do you know what this is?

Kate stares at him. The chirruping noises are much louder.

Kate: I don’t care what it is! We’ve got to get out of here before that bug reaches us! [pause] Well, come on.

Doctor: [waves sludge] This is what it’s all about! The elixir which increases the intelligence, the reason why things are like this!

Gabriel: Doctor! It’s coming.

Doctor: Right. Come on, you two.

The Doctor turns and starts to climb up the cavern wall, over the uneven rocks until he is over the doorway. He turns back to the others.

Doctor: Well, come on!

Kate: We don’t have a chance!

Doctor: So? Do it anyway!


The beetle reaches the end of the tunnel. It roars/chirps.


The Doctor is back on floor level. As the sounds of scuttling grow louder, he waves at the others to climb up the ledge. The beetle’s eyes glow in the darkness of the tunnel, and the Doctor runs behind some sacks. The beetle enters, sniffing the air.

Kate presses herself against the wall, looking down at the monster. Fortunately, it doesn’t look up, but merely scans the room. We see the beetle’s P.O.V., which picks out the sacks and the hole in the ground. Normal view: the beetle crawls down the shaft and out of sight. The Doctor sighs with relief and steps out of the shadows.

Doctor: Well, that was a near thing. Come on down, you two, be...

He breaks off as another pair of red eyes appears in the darkness. The Time Lord scrambles up the wall and joins the others just as the second beetle enters, followed by two more. They scan the place, sniffing around the area the Doctor was in. One of then chirps and runs down the hole. The other two stay, sniffing.


Archibald and Michael are carrying the cauldron of elixir up the steps and out of sight. Timothy closes the grating and then produces a blaster and starts to leave for the cavern. As he turns a corner he comes face to face with a beetle. It roars and Timothy manages to raise his gun before being cut down. His screams fill the air as the beetle leaps onto him and starts to bite and chew.


There are some short, muffled shouts from the hole. The beetles immediately whirl and scuttle down the hole. The Doctor sighs and creeps down the side of the wall. He looks out into the tunnel.

Doctor: It’s all clear. Come on, we’ve got to get back to the TARDIS as soon as possible.

Gabriel: [climbs down] Your space-craft?

Kate: [follows] Why there?

Doctor: If I’m right, those thing hunt by scent. That’s what’s led them here. And they’ll keep following us until their hunger is satisfied. The TARDIS is the only safe place.

The Doctor grabs the nearest sack and struggles to lift it. Gabriel moves to help. Kate eyes the hole, nervously.

Kate: What do you gained their attention?

Doctor: Some poor monk at the end of the tunnel. Let’s hope they don’t pick up any fresh scents.

Gabriel: Or?

Doctor: The human population of Alixion will be reduced drastically. Come on, help. We need to analyze this stuff and see how the Abbot is getting it and how.

The Doctor and Gabriel carry the sack out. Kate eyes the hole again, and follows them out.


The trio head down the tunnel and turn out of sight. A few moments later, the Abbot strolls into view. The strange heart-like pendant throbbing. He smiles knowingly and moves on.


Everyone is eating their food silently. Archibald rises and, having finished his food, heads for the main hallway. Archibald catches Michael’s eye, then leaves.


Archibald heads down the steps towards the doors, and opens them. He wrinkles his nose at some foul odor, but enters anyway.


Archibald enters. The place has been wrecked, with machinery knocked over and elixir, in both states, spilled over the floor. Archibald boggles and heads for passage way leading outwards.

Archibald: [scared] Timmy? Tim? Timmy!

A shadow falls over him, and his eyes widen.

Archibald: [wretchedly] Oh no.

A beetle claw clamps around Archibald’s neck and he screams horribly. As he tries to get free, the beetle is drawn into the light. Another beetle leaps into view and grabs the first beetle. Archibald manages to get free and falls at the feet of a third beetle – which is munching on the bones of Timothy. It notices Archibald and growls.

Archibald: NO! No, no, no – ARRRGGGGHHHHHH!


Archibald’s screams rent the air. Immediately Michael and several other monks get to their feet and run towards the source of the noise. Other stop eating to see what happen. The remainder ignore it.


Michael and five other monks, male and female, run towards the archway. Immediately, a beetle jumps out and lands onto the nearest monk, dragging him to the ground. As the doomed monks screams hysterically, the beetle scans the other terrified clergy in its P.O.V.: Michael turns and runs for it.


The remaining three beetles scuttle towards the noise. The last one is still gnawing on the bloody remains of Archibald, but after munching on the skull for a few moments, follows.


The Doctor and Gabriel are dragging the sack towards a tunnel. Kate follows. The air is thick with beetle chirruping, which randomly grows louder and softer.

Gabriel: Nearly there, Doctor.

Doctor: Good, good. Any sign of the beetles yet, Kate?

Kate: No. [hysterical] Oh, they’re bound to have worked out where we are by now! They’re just going to get us!

Doctor: Kate!

Kate: [stops] What?

Doctor: Shut up. [hands her key] Go and unlock the TARDIS doors.

Kate nods and heads for a tunnel. Immediately, a beetle emerges from it and grabs her arm in its claws she screams and drops the key. The Doctor takes hold of the sack as Gabriel runs and frees her from the claws, only to be caught himself.

Kate: Doctor! Do something!

Doctor: Oh, all right.

The Doctor strolls forward and flicks the beetle on the ‘nose’. It stops its roaring and stares at the Time Lord as if stunned.

Doctor: [softly] Right you two. When I saw run, run.

The monster stares at the Doctor, who returns his gaze. The beetle’s grip slowly slackens on the others, who gently pull themselves free. The Doctor continues to stare at the monster.

Doctor: Run.

Gabriel and Kate turns and start to run for their lives across the cavern. The beetle suddenly roars, and the Doctor ducks out of the way as the monster rushes after them. The Doctor scoops up the sack and runs into the tunnel.


The Doctor reaches the TARDIS, dumps the sack and then snatches the key. He unlocks the doors and throws the sack inside. He turns and shouts down the tunnel.

Doctor: Come on, you two!


The beetle is closing in on Gabriel, who is trapped against the rock. Kate sees this and starts throwing rocks at the creature. the beetle roars and turns to face Kate, and Gabriel escapes. Jenny reaches the tunnel before the beetle reaches her.


The Doctor ushers Gabriel and Kate inside the police box. He enters and slams the doors before the beetle can reach the TARDIS.


The Doctor flips the control and the doors slide closed. They all sigh and relax. Gabriel looks around, amazed.

Doctor: Well, we’re safe for the moment. Now, to see what this magical elixir is?

He crosses to the sack and opens it.


Michael and two other monks race for the exit hallway. Meanwhile, a giant beetle is buzzing in the air above the dining table, carrying a screaming female monk. It starts to eat her. Another monk runs behind a heavy tapestry and hides. He is lit by a red glow. He turns and looks up – a giant beetle is on the wall, looking down at him. It roars.


Two monks are hiding behind a statuette as a beetle munches on several hapless humans. It roars angrily.

Tabon: [sotto] We’re dead meat.

Delbane: [sotto] If we can get past that thing and out of the church, we have a chance.

Tabon: [sotto] No, we won’t make it.

Delbane ignores him and sprints for the end of the hallway. She manages to avoid the beetle, which only makes a token attempt to grab her before returning to eating its meal.


Delbane just manages to leave the hallway, but she is immediately scooped up by another flying beetle. She struggles and kicks, but the monster is soon chomping into her.


Another monk is cut down before he reaches the doorway, and his companion manages to haul open the doors – only to be faced by another ferocious beetle drooling fluid. It lunges forward and in one bite manages to close over the top half of the monk.


Tabon continues to hide behind the statuette. The beetle finishes with the monk and wanders off. Tabon sighs with relief and scrambles to his feet and runs for the safety of the Abbot’s quarters. He tries the door, but it is locked. He wails and then whirls around as he senses something behind him. It is the Abbot.

Tabon: Abbot! Abbot, you’ve got to help us!

The Abbot shrugs, grabs the monk and hurls him to the floor. Tabon grunts with pain as the doors open and the Abbot enters. Tabon struggles to reach cover. Suddenly, a beetle claw clamps itself around Tabon’s leg and the monk is hauled into darkness, screaming.


The Abbot listens to the screams and grins broadly.


The Doctor has set up a table beside the console. On it are various scientific equipment. A dollop of mush has been feed into various sensors. The Doctor checks over the displays and then crosses to the console. Gabriel has changed into some twentieth-century clothing.

Doctor: Ah, feeling better?

Gabriel: Yes, it’s good to be back in proper clothing.

Doctor: I know. It’s hard to break the habit, isn’t it?

Kate: [sighs] Oh, bad one, Doctor.

Doctor: [grins] Possibly. Now, let’s see what the computer have come up with on this wonderful chemical, eh?

He flips switches on the console and the scanner shows numerous images of the substance in various lights and colours. Then, the image changes to a molecular make up and a bar graph.

Kate: What is it saying?

Gabriel: It’s not pure.

Kate: Oh.

Doctor: No, it isn’t, is it? You can see why they have to filter it and then ferment it into the elixir? This is definitely a waste excretion from some kind of animal.

Kate: [winces] Waste?

Doctor: Yes, sweat or some other thing. Probably from the beetles – after all, what other life is here?

Gabriel: But what does this have to do with the Order of Koporahn?

Doctor: That is what I’m trying to discover. Haven’t you ever wondered where all the monks have been disappearing to? These beetles could storm your little church and eat everyone in it in no time, but they allow you to wonder around quite happily nine times out of ten.

Gabriel: This is interesting, Doctor, but why should the beetles be special? Their waste creates the elixir, but that is all.

Doctor: Then why doesn’t the Abbot just capture a beetle and use it as a never ending supply? No I feel that there is something very special about this. Let’s try the Boray band sweep.

He flips more switches and a shimmering display of grey-light light surges and froths on the screen.

Doctor: That’s odd.

Kate: What?

Doctor: That pattern... It’s like some kind of pattern... Of course, an RNA pattern! That’s it, of course, that’s why the Abbot set up the Order and why he made sure of the rules!

Gabriel: What are you talking about?

Doctor: The elixir is created by the beetles once they’ve eaten a human brain! The RNA patterns are absorbed by the creature and flushed out as waste matter. The Abbot then makes the RNA patterns edible and those patterns are then imprinted on the monks!

Kate: What are RNA patterns, anyway?

Doctor: Oh, a kind of chemical transcript of a thought. Don’t you see, Kate, he’s trying to perfect a serum for total intelligence? The smarter the person, the more intelligent the elixir makes you. He sends a smart person out there, turns him into elixir, and gives to another smart person. The smart person becomes even smarter, is turned into elixir and so on.

Gabriel: And he set up the religion to attract the brightest people for a constant supply. And the rules of the order made sure no suspicions were raised.

Doctor: Yes, and I think I know what that Abbot is up to.

Kate: Well, what do we do now?

Doctor: We check up on the monastery. Besides, we’d better make sure that those beetles haven’t turned up. If they have, well... Come on, you two.

He opens the doors and leaves. Kate and Gabriel follow.


The Doctor strides into the cavern, and heads for the exit passage. Before he can, however, Gabriel grabs him and drags him undercover. Seconds later, a beetle scuttles down the exit passage and crosses the cavern. It looks around, chitters and roars. Kate emerges into the cavern, and stops dead at the sight of the beetle. It roars again. The Doctor leaps out of the shadows.

Doctor: Hello, there! Could I interest you in a brand new lower intestine, sir or madam?

The beetle rounds on the Doctor, looking almost confused.

Doctor: [eyes fixed on the beetle] Kate! Run!

Kate does so. The beetle tries to keep track of her, but the Doctor leaps in front of it – and we see its P.O.V as the Doctor’s grinning face fills the view. Back in normal vision, Kate runs to Gabriel.

Kate: We can’t leave him!

Gabriel: Well, I’m going to try! Come on!

Gabriel runs down the exit passage. Kate hesitates.

Doctor: Go on, Kate! Go!

Kate finally turns and leaves. The Doctor continues to concentrate on the beetle. Slowly, it seems to be relaxing.

Doctor: Yes, that’s it. You’re hungry, aren’t you? You poor thing – you must be at the edge of starvation. But, since you’ve come from the monastery, I think you might have had a good meal. Now, I’d like to talk to your leader. Would that be all right?

The beetle nods. The Doctor grins.


The monastery stands dark, and silent. Gabriel and Kate run up to the doors, looking around. He moves to bang on the door, but stops.

Kate: What is it?

Gabriel: These doors. They’re usually locked. [sotto] Be careful.

Gabriel gently pushes open the doors and steps inside. Gingerly, Kate follows. Once they are out of sight, a shadow falls over the doors.


Blood is splashed over the walls, and bone-like remains litter the floor, Gabriel and Kate cover their mouths, eyes wide at the horror before them.

Kate: The beetles... they must have got here first...

Gabriel nods dumbly and they move onwards.


Utter chaos. A small fire is burning in the corner. Mutilated bodies are dumped here and there. The duo enter, staring around in horror.

Gabriel: They must have broken in through the distillation section.

Kate: Do you... do you think anyone got out?

Gabriel: It doesn’t look like it.

Kate: Come on, let’s see if the abbot’s still alive.

Together they head for the main hallway.


More blood and bones. Gabriel sees the slaughter on the stairs.

Gabriel: [wheezing slightly] Keep going, Kate.

Kate: [coughs] What is it?

Gabriel: Something you don’t want to see.

Kate nods and keeps going up to the doors. Both are breathing heavily now. Kate stumbles, but Gabriel catches her.

Gabriel: Are you all... alright?

Kate: It... it’s just... difficult to breathe...

Gabriel: [nods] Some... things... taken away... the... oxygen...

Kate collapses to the floor. Gabriel tries to help her, but slumps against the door to the abbot’s room. He slides down the wall and slumps, unconscious. The door opens to reveal the Abbot. He stares down at the two lifeless bodies and grins.


The Doctor is herded down a tunnel by the beetle.

Doctor: Interesting. Do you know how long before we get there?

The beetle chirrups.

Doctor: That long, eh?

The beetle indicates that he head into a cavern.


The Doctor enters the cavern, where two more beetles are waiting. They roar and try to get him, but the Doctor’s beetle chirps, hisses and roars. The beetles freeze and back away. The Doctor grins.

Doctor: Shall we go?

The entourage moves up another tunnel.


Kate and Gabriel are tied to chairs, back to back. They are both unconscious. Michael and several other monks are carrying clear bottles (the type used in water coolers) through an airlock and out of sight. The Abbot watches them for a moment, and then crosses to Kate. He takes out a small vial from his robes and empties some of the contents down Kate’s throat. Immediately, she starts to cough and splutter. The Abbot smiles and repeats the treatment with Gabriel.

Kate: [groggy] Oh... Where am I?

Abbot: Welcome back from the abyss, Tollinger.

Kate: [peers at him] Oh, it’s you. You survived then?

Abbot: Evidently.

Kate: Did anyone else make it?

Abbot: Save a few helpers, no.

Gabriel groans.

Abbot: Ah, the treacherous Brother Gabriel awakes.

Kate: If anyone’s a traitor around here, it’s you, "abbot"!

Gabriel: Kate? [sighs] What happened?

Abbot: Oh, just one of many little tricks and booby-traps fitted into the church. In this case, it was a force-field placed around you two. The air was drained from around you, and well... here you are.

Gabriel: What are you going to do to us, Abbot?

Abbot: Bad things, Brother Gabriel. Terrible things.

He grins at them.

Abbot: Now – where is the Doctor?!


The beetles and the Doctor stand on the shelf overlooking the area.

Doctor: [to beetle] Where to now?

The beetle chirrups and starts to climb down onto the arena. The Doctor follows, and climbs down. He slips and nearly falls, but the beetle above him grabs hold of his arm, supporting him.

Doctor: Ah! Thank you.

The Doctor’s beetle spreads its wings and flies up. The other beetles releases the Doctor and he falls onto his beetle. The Doctor’s beetle flies down to the ground and the Doctor disembarks.

Doctor: Thank you, again. Which way, now?

The beetle leads the way to a hole in the rocks and indicates the Doctor enters. The other beetles make hungry noises, but the Doctor’s beetle snaps at them in its own language.


The Doctor creeps down the passage. The beetles warily follow.


A large cavern, but there is a huge, slime-like web across one wall. The membranes and thick and translucent, and something can be seen inside. The web gives off a faint glow. Beetles with a slightly darker colour of carapace are patrolling the web. The Doctor and his beetles enter. The Doctor looks around in awe.

Doctor: Of course. This planetoid is a hive for your species.

The Doctor’s beetle chitters and nudges him forward. The Time Lord heads for a slime tube leading up to the web. Immediately, a darker-beetle leaps in front of him and roars.

Doctor: I am the Doctor, President-elect of the High Council of Time Lords. I call upon your leader to grant me an audience to resolve the situation your Hive has been dragged into.

The beetle-warrior chirps and studies the Doctor. Then, it moves aide. The Doctor takes a deep breath and, after giving a wave of farewell to his beetle, heads up to the tube.

42. HIVE

The Doctor emerges from the tube to face a blinding curtain of light.

Doctor: Ah. Am I glad to see you.


Michael and his fellow monks emerge from the airlock. The Abbot is staring at the captive Kate and Gabriel.

Abbot: I ask for the last time. Where is the Doctor?

Kate remains silent. Michael glares at the Abbot, but remains silent.

Abbot: A stubborn pair. I will kill you, if I have to. [sotto] But, if I threaten to kill you and I don’t, it weakens my position. On the other hand, if I kill one of you, it will only strengthen the resolve of the survivor. [grins] An interesting problem, don’t you think? And of course, the best way to deal with a problem is to use a random factor to examine it more closely.

He pulls out a small, compact blaster and fires it at one of the monks. A loud, ethereal pulsing noise fills the air. It grows louder, and the air around the monk turns red. The monk blackens to a silhouette in the glow, and collapses. The glow and noise fade away.

Abbot: Now, unless you want more people to die, I must ask you to give me the information I require.

Kate spits at him. The Abbot grins and aims at her head. Her resolve crumples and her eyes moisten. Continuing to smile, the Abbot fires at the other monk. There is the same effect, and the monk drops dead to the floor. Michael swallows, stunned.

44. HIVE

As before.

Queen: [VO] WHO ARE YOU?

Doctor: I am the Doctor, a visitor to your world.


Doctor: I am attempting to restore life to its proper course, not interfere. This planet was once lush and fertile. What happened to it?


Doctor: I told you. I’m repairing the damage someone else has done. He calls himself the Abbot. What has he done? Did he interfere?


Doctor: Those food animals are his own kind! Living, breathing, feeling people! They have as much right to live as you do!


Doctor: And you don’t care that your food animals have conquered half the galaxy? I understand this is difficult, but your animals – the ones you ate before – were they sentient? Did they build cities and fight wars and create art?

There is silence.

Doctor: Well?

Queen: [VO] NO.

Doctor: All right. You want food? You’ll get it – on one condition.

There is silence.



As before.

Abbot: No answers? Well, maybe this will gain some reaction.

The Abbot crosses to a wall and presses a button. A segment of wall slides forward and adjusts at an angle so you can lean against it. A large section of floor slides back and a large console rises out of the floor. It is a massive glass dome, surrounded by a ring of controls and filled with spinning vanes. The centrepiece is a large, jagged crystal.

Gabriel: What are you doing?

Abbot: If you will not tell me the truth, I will... deduct it from you. When the elixir is allowed to solidify, they become Mnemonic crystals, a method of retrieving fading memories and storing new ones. I have... adapted the methods so that it drains the mind from the subject completely. The intelligence, personality, the mind itself is transferred to a computer disk which I can study at my leisure.

Michael takes Gabriel and braces him against the upright bench, and clamps close around the monk’s body, holding there. The Abbot starts busying himself around the console. The device powers up, the vanes start to spin.

Abbot: I call it ‘the Mind Rapist’. If you do not answer me, I will start the process. Now.

Kate: No, you can’t do that! It’s inhuman!

Abbot: What a shame. You have five seconds.

Gabriel: NO!

Abbot: Three seconds.

Michael: Abbot, you can’t be serious.

Abbot: Time’s up.

The Abbot moves to activate the control.

Kate: We don’t know! We don’t know where he is!

Abbot: [about to press control] Really?

Gabriel: Yes, really. He distracted a beetle, and we don’t know where he is now! Just... please, just don’t press that button.

The Abbot shrugs... then presses the button. Gabriel screams in pain as images wash through the strut of crystal. His back arches and he is suddenly still. The crystal grows brighter and brighter, and there is the sound of devices powering up. At the last moment, Michael leaps at the Abbot and smashes him away from the control. The Abbot’s gun comes free and clatters onto the floor.

Abbot: [punches him] It’s a bit late to acquire morals, Mike!

Michael: It’s never too late!

As the two clerics fight, Kate manages to grip the gun between her feet. She manages to aim it the Abbot and fires it. The air turns red and there is an explosion. In shock, Kate drops her gun. The Abbot shimmers in and out of existence, turning completely white, then black, and then white, as if being slowly torn apart. In an instant, the Abbot completely disappears.

Abbot: No!

Michael: [stunned] Did you mean for that to happen?

Kate: [stares] Of course... not.


The Doctor and several beetles are heading for the church.

Doctor: Did I ever tell you about the time I went to Cambridge University? [beetle chirps] Yes. [beetle chirrups] Terribly nice place. [more chirps] Yes, but then again, the Earth is generally a terribly nice place. [a belch] It’s nice. Like Paris. Quite nice. [chirp] Another pretty little place on Earth. [beetle chirrups] Yes. Yes, Earth again. What’s wrong with Earth? Hmm? [chirps] What’s Paris like? Very much like Cambridge. [more chirps] What’s Cambridge like? Oh, nice. Very nice. Like Paris.

He opens the doors to the monastery and enters. The Doctor’s beetle follows him inside.


The Doctor and the beetle enter.

Doctor: Oh dear. Dear, dear, dear.

The beetle makes ‘sorry’ noises.

Doctor: You weren’t to know. Come on.

The Doctor heads for the hallway.


Michael is untying Kate.

Kate: Why did you do it, Michael?

Michael: Look, mate, I had no idea he was feeding people to those beetles. All I knew was that they made the elixir. And I had nothing to do with that beetle attack.

Kate: How did you escape?

Michael produces an organ-like pendant like the one the Abbot used.

Michael: We were all given one of these. It makes the beetles think you’re one of them. Look, I couldn’t save them but I could save those people in there.

Kate: Yeah. Right. Look, this isn’t getting us anywhere. Let’s see where the Doctor is.


The Doctor, looking rather unwell, drinks from a ladle of elixir. He swallows it, belches, and drops the ladle inside the now-empty cauldron. Jenny and Gabriel.

Kate: Doctor!

Doctor: [weakly] Ah, Kate, there you are!

Kate notices the beetle and retreats.

Kate: Doctor! Run!

Doctor: Don’t worry, Kate, he’s on our side. [to beetle] Go back to the queen and tell her everything is in order. We’ll be off shortly.

The beetle chirps and scuttles off.

Doctor: I’ve had a talk with the beetle queen. We’ve got two weeks to leave Alixion and have no more human existence here. But, er, you do have to supply them with some cattle for the next 500 years.

Kate: What?

Doctor: They have to eat something, Kate. Our Abbot made sure there was nothing else to eat here apart from people. Where is he, anyway?

Michael: Oh, he... he just vanished.

Doctor: Yes, well, he wasn’t real in the first place. Hologram.

Kate: How could you tell?

The Doctor taps his nose. The Abbot steps out of the shadows, now wearing a business suit and is clean-shaven. The Doctor pales.

Doctor: [sotto] Kate, listen to me. Don’t let him near you. When I say run –

Manager: You’ll be dead if you move.

Doctor: Ah, there you are. Been enjoying yourself?

Manager: Immensely.

Doctor: How did you discover time travel?

Manager: By the Order of Kaporahn, of course. But the theories have rarely worked. I’ve barely been able to stay in another timezone for more than a few days. That is why I decided to lure you here.

Kate: Who are you, anyway?

Manager: I am the Manager, Kate Tollinger. And I am responsible for your very existence.

Kate: Oh, really?

Doctor: He’s telling the truth, Kate. He’s been tampering with history. He created chaos in the future, around the Federation’s contact with the Metatraxi. He then caused the Martian situation which led to Jarga fleeing to Earth.

Manager: Yes, and when you followed and pushed history back on course, you delivered young Kate here. In the original course of events, she died. Her mother miscarried while her father was out.

Doctor: All for one reason – to lure me here.

Manager: Of course, Doctor. You are the only possible hope I have for mastering the powers to travel through time and space.

Doctor: How many other people’s life have you influenced, Manager? Your scheming has destroyed planets, created dictatorships and who knows how much else – and those are just the ones I know about. You sit here, cracking jokes and sipping cocktails, manipulating everyone here just because you like it!

The Manager listens to this, nodding agreeably.

Doctor: You’re a foul excuse for existence, Manager, and I will bring you down. Whatever it takes, whatever the cost, I will bring you down. It ends here.

Manager: Well, you’ve got that right, Doctor. Your actions have been quite diverting. Especially your determination to get me at all costs. You didn’t even try to save the monks here. In fact, he caused their deaths.

Kate: How?

Manager: The beetles hunt by scent and will hunt until they get a kill. He managed to escape, and so the beetles came here, searching for the Doctor. They didn’t find him, but they found other food. [smiles cruelly] Need I go on?

Doctor: [sighs] No. You can’t escape the consequences of your actions by refusing to act. And you’ve been doing that all along.

Manager: Really? I use other people. Like you do.

Doctor: [angry] Shut up!

Manager: Well, Doctor, you have cleaned up the situation here on Alixion quite well. I do so hate leaving loose threads everywhere. Now, I am going to leave, and you, Doctor are going to give me your mind.

Doctor: Never! It wouldn’t be fair.

Manager: I’m sorry, are you used to living in a fair universe? I’d no idea. You must show it to me some time. Oh, Doctor, you have gone down hill. Whatever happened to the man who destroyed whole species for the greater good? He would never have let me got this far.

Doctor: I am not going to be made jealous of myself, Manager. It’s absurd.

Manager: So is travelling through time and space in a police box.

The Manager turns and guns down Michael. Kate backs away in horror.

Manager: Oh dear. Look what I’ve done.

The Manager takes aim at Kate.

Manager: If you want me to let her live, give up, now.

The Doctor stares at him for a long moment.

Doctor: No. I’m not going to be like you.

He sighs and raises his hands.

Doctor: [smiles] I win Manager.

Manager: So you do. Fancy that.

The Manager blasts the Doctor, who crumples to the floor. Kate turns and runs for it. The Manager laughs, and the doors slam shut.


Kate stops as the doors close. She turns and bangs on them angrily. Then, she pulls out her tools and starts to attack the lock.


The Doctor is now straightjacketed. The Manager presses him up against the desk and secures him to it, then starts flipping switches on the control console.

Doctor: [groggily] Oh, no. [sighs] I can’t die here, 945 years in the business. It would be too undignified – I’d never hear the end of it.

Manager: I need your knowledge.

Doctor: I need it, too!

Manager: True. [sets controls] This is going to be the beginnings of the greatest empire the cosmos has ever seen. Judging from what I have concluded about your TARDIS from our periodic encounters, I can adjust any spacecraft of present design to travel with time and space by fitting a relative dimensional stabilizer to it. Goodbye.

The Manager gives a predatory smiles and starts the process.

Doctor: [desperate scream] If anybody’s thinking of rescuing me – I suggest THEY GET THEIR SKATES ON!

It powers up, internal components spinning and gyrates. The crystals pulse with light. The Doctor is wracked in pain. Images of the previous few adventures wash over the surface of the crystal. The Manager laughs. The Doctor’s head slumps back against the bench as the humming increases. On the floor, Michael slowly lifts his head. He is alive, but badly wounded.


Kate listens to the events happening and continues on the lock.


The Doctor lies against the table, staring blankly ahead. The jagged crystal shows a shimmering array of images, mostly of the Doctor. As the Manager watches, images of other Doctors and the TARDIS start to appear. The process completes itself and a computer disc emerges from the machine. The Manager pockets it, and releases the Doctor, who flops lifeless onto the floor. Meanwhile, Michael slowly picks himself up, and sees the Manager’s gun, which has been abandoned on the table. Michael smiles weakly.


The Manager dumps the Doctor’s lifeless form in the corner and leaves. The door slides shut. We see the Doctor isn’t breathing.


Michael steps into the airlock as the Manager, oblivious, presses a few buttons on the console. The doors open and Kate bursts in. She skids to a halt as she realizes the Doctor is no longer present.

Kate: Doctor! Doctor!

Manager: Too late, my dear. The Doctor is finished. Forever!

Kate: What have you done?

Manager: [pats Mind Rapist] I told you This could extract the mind from a living being. I must say, I’m surprised the Doctor allowed himself to be destroyed by this thing.

Kate: Destroyed? The Doctor’s dead?

Manager: [laughs] Merely brain dead. His mind has been wiped clean.

Kate: But he’ll be all right?

Manager: No. He will remain mindless, for the rest of his life. If you don’t feed him, that shouldn’t be more than a few weeks.

He enters his ship, and the wall closes over the entrance. Kate turns and rushes over to the cell.


A large segment of rock slides back on the surface of Alixion. We see the complex, cylindrical craft zoom away.


The Manager sits in an ornate, wooden chair with an oak keyboard attached. He laughs merrily and types out at the keyboard. Hieroglyphics wash over a screen ahead of him.

Manager: [laughs] Wake up, universe! It’s time to meet your god!

He starts to operate controls.


A familiar wheezing groaning sound is heard as the craft fades, reappears, fades and starts to reappear.


Michael stands in the airlock, gasping for air. He brings the blaster down heavily on the coolant pipes opposite him and gas starts to emerge. Coughing, Michael groggily raises the blaster, and fires.


An explosion blossoms from the side of the Manager’s ship. The craft seems to explode and then is swallowed up with a final howl. We dissolve to the following shot:


Kate stops attacking the lock as she notices the abandoned sketch pad she and the Doctor used to communicate earlier. She flips to the last page. We hear the Doctor narrate:

Doctor: [VO] Kate. If you're reading this then there is a good chance that I lost the game and the Manager won. I'm not sure what's going to happen but I have a shrewd idea or two, and the Queen suggested he might have some kind of device that destroys mental energy. Now, if it works on the Skaagra-Caldera principle, it must works by completely copying every last though in your head, copying it, and destroying the original. But, it only expects there to be so much data in any one brain. All you have to do is make sure you have more thoughts than it expects you to, and you’re fine. Which is why I'm going to drink as much of this cauldron of beetle juice. If I'm lucky, he won't steal my brain, just the excess intelligence generated by the elixir. If it's worked, sorry in advance for the scares, but then the Manager might have found out and just zapped me again. I know my amazingly complex and intricate plans astound and amaze you, but we have an appointment on the other side of the universe. But if it hasn't worked, well... I have faith in you Kate. Don't grieve for me.

Kate drops the book and attacks the lock of the confinement cell with more energy. After a few seconds, the metal door slides away, revealing the grey cell and the lifeless shape of the Doctor inside.

Kate: Doctor!

Kate scrambles over to his body and feel at his neck.

Kate: Oh, Doctor... played for and lost.

She tries some primitive CPR on the Doctor before sighing and dragging him out of the cell. The Doctor’s hat is left behind in the cell.


Kate reaches the police box, and searches the Doctor’s trouser pockets for several seconds before producing the key. She unlocks the door and opens both doors. She drags the Doctor inside.


Kate releases her grip on the Doctor once they are inside. She studies his still features for a moment, sighs, and crosses to the console. She closes the doors, and hurries back to the Doctor. She closes his staring eyes. She get up and crosses over to the console. The instruments inside the time rotor start to piston up and down. Kate lowered he head, her face in her hands. The music swells.


The TARDIS’s lamp starts to flash. The police box glows a bright blue that ripples and distorts before fading away. We pull out from the tunnel.


We can still hear the noise. The asteroid grows smaller and smaller. The TARDIS spins away, entering the swirling lights of the vortex. It tumbles and pitches through the maelstrom. We zoom in and mix to:


Kate lifts her head and looks down to the Doctor. Her eyes widen. The little body is bathed in a strange shimmering glow.

Kate: Holey moley.

The glow fades to reveal a larger, younger man with longer hair lying on the floor. He cracks open his eyes.

New Doctor: Not again.

Doctor Who will return in Back from the Dead

The Doctor Sylvester McCoy
Kate Tollinger Julia Sawahla
The Abbot/The Manager Bob Monkhouse
The Queen Virginia Hey
Michael Mark Anton
Gabriel Alan Butler
and introducing Neil Pearson as The New Doctor

No comments: