Wednesday, February 7, 2007


For a full explanation of all this malarky, look here.


(Two 'policemen' are standing on a corner. There is a strange noise, and we hear Lytton’s voice echoing through their minds)

LYTTON (V.O): Delta particle detect in a mile-wide radius sweep of the Rift zone. And don’t delay.

(The ‘policeman’ stalk off, a strange beeping noise emiting from them)


(Lytton’s screen currently shows the ‘Policemen’ POV.)

LYTTON: Rift status?

COMPUTER: Highly unstable.

LYTTON: Show me.

(The computer screen shows a wavelength like those given out by a heart monitor - it's jumping all over the place. LYTTON shakes his head)

LYTTON: What kind of primate have they got on the other end of that?


(PROSER is working at a console with complicated controls. His eyes dart back and forth, reading streams of data. He grimaces slightly as a metallic hand grips him by the collarbone. The dark, ominous voice of the CONTROLLER rings out, slightly distorted as if over a PA system)

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O) Are you attempting to delay us, Proser?

PROSER: No, I am not. These calculations are extremely difficult... more than two thousand years!

CYBERMAN (V.O) Our calculations state 800 years.

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O): This is correct.

(Proser becomes panicky)

PROSER: Ah. Yes. Sorry – I got confused converting to the Tellurian calendar…

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O) Why do you believe we are interested in your excuses?

(There is a small beeping noise. Immediately the metal hand begins tightening. Proser starts yelling in pain.)

PROSER: Arrrgh! What are you doing? Kill me and I can't help you!

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O) You are not helping us now. You are delaying. Sabotaging.

PROSER: No I am not! I'm trying!

(He begins working the controls much faster)

CYBER CONTROLLER: (V.O) Your last test was a failure.

(The hand tightens. He works faster)

PROSER: I couldn't help that! I COULDN'T HELP THAT!


PROSER: It's almost stable I swear!


(Proser is starting to have breathing difficulties)

PROSER: (faintly) It's almost done!!


(Proser is on the brink of collapse, but as he hits a button a green light appears on the console. Immediately after this the hand lets go of him and he falls down to the floor.)

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O) The rift is stable?

(Proser slowly gets to his feet, rubbing his neck in pain.)

PROSER: For the moment it should be. But not in an hour or so. You'll have to institute a program to keep it stabilised.

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O) We have already devised one. Your work here is done.

PROSER: You mean if this test's successful?

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O) No. If it is not, then your work here is still done. Permanently.

(PROSER looks nervous)


(The room is shaking wildly, both the DOCTOR and PERI are gripping onto the console for dear life. There is a massive jolt as the TARDIS finally crash-lands, and the lights snap out suddenly. For one or two seconds all we see is a dark, smoke-ridden haze, punctuated by Peri's groaning, and the sound of the Cloister Bell in the distance. Then suddenly a dark, red emergency lighting activates, and we see the Doctor, ungainly wielding a wild fire-extinguisher, spraying it all over the room.)

THE DOCTOR: Peri! Peri! Get up!

PERI: Ugh, I can barely move...

(We see PERI through the smoke, sprawled on the floor. The Doctor roughly drags her onto her feet)

THE DOCTOR: You have to, come on!

PERI: Why?

THE DOCTOR: WHY?! The whole TARDIS is going to explode!

PERI: What?


(Looks remarkably like the Doctor left it... rubbish everywhere, naturally, and we see two rag and bone men, possibly descendants of the mighty Pigbin Josh, sifting through the garbage surrounding them. Then suddenly, a weird, screeching noise develops, and soon beings stuttering, and getting faster and faster until... BOOM! There is a white flash and the thundering sound of an explosion, and a sudden wind whips up, knocking the couple onto their backs. Suddenly the TARDIS has appeared in the middle of the yard, has smoke pouring off it, hissing like a piece of hot metal in a cold breeze. The two rag and bone men stare aghast as the twin doors flip open and the Doctor runs out, pushing Peri in front of him, and they dive onto the ground. There is an awkward pause as nothing else seems to happen, the silence filled with only the continuing hissing sound)

PERI: (groggily) I thought you said it was going to blow up?

THE DOCTOR: Worst case scenario, Peri. Would you rather have been oblivious to the danger we could have been in?

PERI: Oblivion sounds alright right now...

(The Doctor stands up and dusts himself down. He sees the two rag and bone men and waves cheerily.)

THE DOCTOR: Oh, hello there! Lovely day for it!

(The men run off in terror.)

THE DOCTOR: What strange behaviour.

(He looks down at Peri, who is still lying on the ground.)

THE DOCTOR: You ARE alright, aren't you, Peri?

(Peri slowly gets to her feet, looking decidedly unamused.)

PERI: Doctor… you said I could name conditions for staying onboard…

THE DOCTOR: And one of them’s never to go upstream in a time rift?

PERI: Yeah.

THE DOCTOR: Don’t worry – I’ve been giving that some serious consideration. Now…

PERI: And we’re getting some coffee.


PERI: Yes. I’ll lead, shall I?

(Peri grabs the Doctor’s hand and leads him out of the junkyard.)


(Two sewer workers, BILL and DAVE, are standing outside their van, facing towards the junkyard gates. They see Peri and the Doctor leaving hand-in-hand.)

BILL: Blimey, talk about the odd couple.

DAVE: And what's he thinkin' with the coat?

BILL: (shrugs) Ah, there's nothing wrong with a bit of colour here and there.

DAVE: Yes, there is, Bill. Trust me on that - yes, there is.

(BILL shakes his head, and finishes his sandwich)

BILL: (through a mouthful) Well, not our business anyway. (Pulling out a clipboard) Our business is... noise report?

DAVE: Say what?

BILL: Noise report.

DAVE: That doesn't make much sense.

BILL: Says 'ere... a report of what sounded like an explosion in the junction of Totter's Lane and Barclay Street.

DAVE: And we're investigating it?

BILL: Apparently. (Puts clipboard back down) And don't ask me what we're looking for - I wouldn't have the foggiest.

(DAVE takes a swig of coffee from a thermos)

DAVE: Well, er, here's to investigating then, eh?

(The two put on their hardhats and open up the manhole, before climbing in. Because of this, they completely fail to notice the two figures dressed as policemen arriving at the junkyard)


(Peri still has the Doctor in tow.)

PERI: You’d know London pretty well, wouldn’t you?

THE DOCTOR: What makes you say that?

PERI: The accent. You sound like…(thinks for a moment) aw, what's the name? That propaganda guy from all the WWII films?

THE DOCTOR: (unamused) Lord Haw-Haw?

PERI: Yeah, Lord Haw-Haw! Heh, be careful or I might start calling you that...

(Their conversation trails off as the two 'policemen' are following them, staring at them blankly.)


(Lytton's computer now has an image of the Doctor and Peri on the street displayed)

LYTTON: Can you identify them?

COMPUTER: Records of male are sporadic and incomplete, spread over a period of years.

LYTTON: A Time Lord.

COMPUTER: Conjecture has high probability of accuracy.

LYTTON: And a Time Lord who involves himself... narrows the field, I think.

COMPUTER: The female-

LYTTON: Is unimportant.

(Lytton presses a few buttons and the bogus policemen appear on his monitor)

LYTTON: Leave those two - get back to that craft.


(BILL and DAVE are walking down a section of the sewer tunnels, shining their torches around, looking for anything vaguely interesting with something of an uncertain air. After a while, Bill spots something.)

BILL: Hey, Dave... look at that.

(He shines his torch on a black streak running along the wall)

DAVE: Ugh, don't even want to think about what that could be!

BILL: Don't be an idiot! It's all charred.

DAVE: Charred?

BILL: Yeah.

(Bill walks up to it and brushes his hand across it, before looking at his hand)

BILL: See? Powdery.

DAVE: So there WAS an explosion?

BILL: Seems that way... only it runs along the wall...

DAVE: Like a fireball?

(Bill nods)

DAVE: There's probably a fair bit of methane down here...

BILL: (sniffs) Not that much.

DAVE: Well, it'd be burnt off by now, wouldn't it?

(BILL says nothing, and follows along the charred streak on the wall. He stops when he comes to what appears to be a heap of burnt and melted metal slag)

BILL: Hey... what's this?

(He picks up a piece. It appears to be a mask, with familiar tear-drop indentations below the eye-holes...)


(We see a tall, hulking silhouette in a large glass tube, hooked up to various wires. PROSER looks at it anxiously, still behind his controls)

CYBER CONTROLLER (V.O) Beta Test of Temporal Rift Slipstream Exploration Project. Activation in 3...2...1...

(As the Controller speaks Proser begins punching in a series of commands)


DAVE: It's nothing, mate, just a heap o' machine parts. Let's get-

(There is the thundering noise of an explosion, which shakes the whole tunnels)

DAVE: Flippin' heck! Gas main?

BILL: No. We're not toast yet... never heard an explosion like that... I'm going to have a look. You check out that... machine thing. I don't think it's meant to be down here.

DAVE: I don't think we're meant to be down here...

(Bill ignores him and walks off. Dave starts picking through the bits of metal.)

DAVE: What are you, then, eh? What

(He stops moving suddenly, and slowly pulls out his hand. It is covered in a sickly-white substance, that he stares at in horror. Looking cautiously down, he moves aside some of the metal pieces and begins to gag at whatever he sees. He scrambles away from the pile quickly, a retches up against the wall.)

DAVE: Bill!... it's not just machine parts in there!

(There's no response. He leans himself onto the wall breathing deeply, trying to compose himself.)

DAVE: Bill?

(A shadow falls over him, cautiously he turns around... and we see him from an electronic POV. He screams in terror as two metallic hands clamp around him.)


(PROSER is standing with his arms twisted behind his back and metal hands gripping his shoulders, looking extremely nervous. His eyes are fixed on something off camera)

CYBERMAN (V.O): Beta Test... successful.

(Proser is released, and breaths a massive sigh of relief)

CYBERCONTROLLER (V.O): Transport a CyberLeader unit to new outpost - begin execution of Operation: Terra Mondas. And remove the Fleshman from my control centre.


(The ‘policemen’ approach the TARDIS, their watches beeping steadily. Once they reach the device proper, they switch the detection device in their watches off, and tentatively reach out to push the doors. Unsurprisingly, they have no effect. One of the them reaches into his coat and pulls out a sleek metal rod, and begins pressing buttons on it. It emits some shrill whirring noises, but nothing happens.)


(Lytton’s monitor is showing a full-shot of the TARDIS. He looks unimpressed.)

LYTTON: If you’re to get inside that thing you’ll need a key from the Doctor. Hide there and wait until given orders otherwise.

(Lytton presses a switch, and the screen goes blank. He glances at his watch and looks irritated.)

LYTTON: We’re well past schedule for First Contact.

COMPUTER: Confirmed.


(The body of Bill lies on the grimy ground, looking peaceful. The camera pans up from and shows a futuristic looking control bank, which looks to have been very recently set up. It contains a monitor and many other controls. An iron hand runs across the controls…)


(There is a bright orange flash that illuminates the walls, casting large, hulking shadows across them.)

CYBERLEADER: (V.O) Excellent.


(As before)

LYTTON: Would you be able to patch through a com-link to the rift zone?

COMPUTER: Due to the nature of the zone any link established will be unstable.

LYTTON: (Testily) Yes, I know that. What I wanted to know was whether or not you could attempt it.


LYTTON: Then do so.

(There is extremely heavy interference. A vague outline of a face is all that can be perceived.)

CYBERLEADER (VO, heavily distorted) State purpose of communication.

LYTTON: Can you receive me?

CYBERLEADER (VO) State purpose of communication.

LYTTON: (slower, clearer) Can-you-receive-me?

CYBERLEADER (VO) State purpose of communication or it will be severed.

LYTTON: I said… oh no..

(As he speaks the monitor crackles and changes to images of blue, crystalline humanoid figures, swimming in and out of view due to various distortion effects. They speak in a manner similar to a greek chorus)

CRYONS: You treat with our enemies, you try to join them!

LYTTON: I do no such thing.

CRYONS: Explain your actions!

LYTTON: I cannot. Leave this channel.

CRYONS: Explain!

LYTTON: Leave!

CRYONS: You may not command us!

(Lytton roughly swtiches the controls to turn of the computer. After this is done he rubs his temples and groans softly. Talking to the cryons seems to have hurt him somehow…)


(Payne is back under the car, tinkering with it. His stereo is back on, but softer this time. Griffiths is seated near the workbench, reading the rest of the paper.)

PAYNE: What time is it?

GRIFFITHS (checks watch) 5 to.

PAYNE: Shouldn’t that new bloke be here by now?

GRIFFITHS: No. He should have been here twenty minutes ago.

PAYNE: Blimey – nice to know he’s a reliable sort, eh? What’s the geezer’s name?

GRIFFITHS: Vince Russell.

PAYNE: What you make of ‘im, then?

(Payne comes out from under the car and stubs out his cigarette, before pulling another one out of the pack almost straight away.)

GRIFFITHS: Right prat if you ask me, not that the Boss did, of course. I don’t care if the bloke is connected, like he says he is, he just don’t have the right attitude.

PAYNE (glumly) new school?

GRIFFITHS: If he is it’s another reason to be glad I’m getting outta the business.

(Payne takes a swig from a beer bottle he has set down next to him.)

PAYNE: So you serious about quittin’ then?

GRIFFITHS: Too right I am. This is gonna be me last job. Paid the Doctor’s bills some time back. Thanks to our last job, reckon I’ve enough to set the two of us up for life.

PAYNE: You and Mary?

GRIFFITHS: She didn’t return my calls.

PAYNE: Oh, right. Stephanie?

GRIFFITHS: (testily) I was talking about me mum.

PAYNE: Oh, right. Yeah.

(Awkward silence)

PAYNE: You know, my sister…

GRIFFITHS: Yeah, I know about your sister!

PAYNE (scowling) Just a suggestion. So, what’d the boss say, anyway?

GRIFFITHS: About what?

PAYNE: You quitting. (beat) You have told him, haven’t you?


(Payne laughs – it’s a raspy cruel laugh)

PAYNE: You serious? You’re a nutter, Charlie Griffiths, a downright nutter. He won’t like it.

GRIFFITHS: And how do you know that, mate?

PAYNE: Cos he don’t like anything. Right hard bloke, he is. (grinning) You’d best tell him before it’s too late.


PAYNE: Wouldn’t put nothing past him.

(Payne withdraws back under the car.)

GRIFFITHS: He’s been very kind to me and my mum.

PAYNE: Cos you’ve been kind to him. This has always been you’re problem, mate. You trust people. Sometimes I wonder if you even realise what sodding business you’re in.

GRIFFITHS: So what you sayin’? You think he’d kill me?

PAYNE: Like I said. Put nothin’ past him. You ever hear him mention any family, any girls, anyone else at all?

GRIFFITHS: Well, no…

PAYNE: He don’t have nobody. Either that or nobody will have him. And there’s gotta be a reason for that, Charlie. There ain’t nobody normal who does that. So whatever you do, you don’t want to catch him off guard. He might snap, like one of those bloke’s in the films. You know the ones, the mad drug-addled axe-murderer films in the forests-

GRIFFITHS: Don’t watch those sort of films.

PAYNE: …I think you’re missing the point, Charlie. I’m just saying, it’s best to tell him now, rather than when you leave.


(The Doctor and Peri are now seated in al fresco cafe area, looking out onto the road. Peri seems to be taking the time to relax, finally drinking her coffee. The Doctor is tinkering with his latest gadget.)

PERI: So... what's the big deal with changing history, Doctor? I mean, isn't that what we do whenever we land somewhere?

THE DOCTOR: (without looking up) Yes... and no.

PERI: You said it could destroy the universe not too long ago.


PERI: But... we just go where we want and it doesn't matter? It doesn't make much sense...

THE DOCTOR: Nothing makes much sense unless you know the science behind it. And the science of time... well, let's just say it's more than a little complicated. It took me a couple of decades to get it down pat. And you know how clever I am.

PERI: (nods) Sure. So, I'm just meant to take your word that this is something different because I'm the human and you're the alien. Got ya.

(The Doctor sighs and puts down his device, turning to face Peri for the first time.)

THE DOCTOR: You humans always want an explanation, don't you?

PERI: You got that right.

(The Doctor thinks for a moment)

THE DOCTOR: Okay... there's a hole in your wall, causing a nasty draught, spoiling the look, etcetera. What do you do?

PERI: Patch it up.

THE DOCTOR: With what?

PERI: Plaster.

THE DOCTOR: Correct. That way the landlord doesn't find it.

PERI: Yep.

THE DOCTOR: But, if you were lazy you could just get a piece of plywood and slap that over it, maybe give it a lick of paint to cover. See what I'm saying?

PERI: That you've been in trouble with landlords before?

THE DOCTOR: No, no, no... well, yes I have, actually, but what I'm TRYING to say is that the TARDIS is plaster of paris. It slips in nice and seamless. Whereas opening a rift through time and space is like...(he flounders for a moment) slamming your fist through a wedding cake.

PERI: What kind of metaphor is that?

THE DOCTOR: (Defensively) The universe is a beautiful thing. Like a wedding cake.

PERI: Yeah, but it's got nothing to do with landlords and plaster.

THE DOCTOR: (irritated now) Fine, then, I *won’t* use simile or analogy. That rift is created by a projection of delta particles, an artificially-generated beam particle that is corrosive to the fabric of the continuum, like acid on your flesh. The continuum is self-restoring, but it needs time.

PERI: Wouldn't the continuum have all the time in the world?

THE DOCTOR: ...that's a joke, isn't it?

PERI: Hey, you're starting to recognize them! Good for you!

THE DOCTOR: Oh, yes. Excellent news. But now I'll have to wear a corset or be forever in constant danger of my sides splitting.

(Peri pushes the Doctor playfully. He remains dignified.)

THE DOCTOR: But, as I was saying, Delta Particles leave a gap in the continuum...

PERI: That we fell into?

THE DOCTOR: More or less... only there is a constant flow of Delta Particles being maintained. Creating a current which pushes us along, like a river.

PERI: Clever.

THE DOCTOR: No. Clumsy. Slipstream travel is probably the most dangerous and inefficient means of time travel there is...

PERI: I wouldn't call the TARDIS 'Safe', exactly...

THE DOCTOR: Really? Maybe I should arrange for you to have a trip on this craft when I find it... it could put the whole thing in perspective.

PERI: ...that's a joke, right?

THE DOCTOR: For the time being. A-ha! There we go, (wielding device) working perfectly.

PERI: What is it?

THE DOCTOR: A Delta-Particle Displacement Monitor.

PERI: You mean, a time machine detector?

THE DOCTOR: That's the idea.

PERI: And… what do we do when we find the ship?

THE DOCTOR: Peri, thinking that far ahead can only spoil the surprise!

(The Doctor looks at the new-built device, which beeps. He shifts around to a point where it begins beeping more and more frequently)

THE DOCTOR: Ah-ha... we've headed completely the wrong way. Back where we landed...


(A black car with tinted windows, driving along slowly, with an unusual device in the centre of the dash board that looks a little like a radar. It is beeping. A man behind the wheel in a plaid jacket and sunglasses is speaking into a walkie-talkie.)

MAN: Pursuing target, in the general direction of Kensington and Chelsea. Over.

More next week.

1 comment:

Youth of Australia said...

Damn it!

I know EXACTLY what happens next and I STILL can't wait for the next bit!