Dana prepared for the worst as the two monsters moved in for the kill. Suddenly however she heard a shot and as she looked up, she saw the phasing monster standing there with a smoking hole in its chest.
The beast collapsed to the ground dead. Dana looked ahead to see another member of Exelicos’ species standing at the tunnel on the other end of the room. It was a female, who looked as though she’d been through quite a few scrapes in her time.
The female alien ran to Dana and tried to help her up. Unfortunately the giant above started to poke its hand through the crack in the ceiling, and tried to grab the female who fired another shot into the giants eye, which made it retreat for a few seconds in pain. Whilst she was fighting the monster off, Reosa was able to help Dana up and the three ladies then ran down the tunnel, dodging the giant’s hand as it descended from ceiling again.
“Thank you” Dana said.
“They’ve taken everything from me. A few minutes ago, I saw the man who had raised me, made me the person I am today, make me kill him because he felt it was pointless to go on any longer against those monsters.” The woman said.
“I’m so sorry. They took everything from me too.” Reosa said.
“Don’t be. He’s free now. The three of us? We’re trapped down here with hundreds of those things, and there’s only one charge left in the gun. If they corner us I’ll let one of you use it. I vowed not to take the easy way out.”
“Well thank you” Dana said, not sure if she meant it.
“I don’t intend to have to use it either.” Dana continued. “There’s a friend of mine down here, who might have a plan for stopping those things, but we have to get to him first.”
Suddenly the tunnel began to shake, and the giants roar came bellowing down the caves.
“It’s back. It can smell us, we need to go now.” The female Alien said.
“Wait tell me your name first, I want to at least know who I owe my life too.”
“Its Mirash, and you?”
“Dana, and this is Reosa, now you’re right lets get out of here and try and find the Doctor. He should be at the generator.”
“The generator? There were hundreds of those monsters down there guarding it?”
“Not anymore the Doctor.”
The room began to shake again.
“I’ll explain on the way.”
The Doctor was deep in the lower levels of the caves. Just like Dana he had come across the slaughtered remains of several more Mihia’s.
“I’m so sorry Exelicos” the Doctor said over the communicator.
“I did not expect any of them to have survived. I prepared myself for this.”
The Doctor had followed Exelicos’ directions through the caves to the main power source, but the Time Lord had had some difficulty following them. He had never had a good sense of direction to be fair. To the Doctor each little gloomy tunnel looked the same. He must have got lost about 3 times.
Suddenly the Doctor heard a rumbling sound coming from above as though something huge was coming.
“Exelicos is the giant still eh… indisposed?”
“Yes Doctor, I can see still him on the monitor. There must be another one.”
“Another one, what the hell do you mean?”
“I don’t know. Normally they only send one of them on missions. One is all they normally need.” Exelicos said.
“Considering this is the most important mission they’ve ever been on, they may have sent more than one.” He continued.
“Well how many do you think they sent?” The Doctor said somewhat panicing.
“I don’t know. Maybe only two, maybe. You need to hurry Doctor now.”
The rumbling sound grew larger and the tunnel began to shake violently. The Doctor ran down the long tunnel, following Exelicos’ instructions. Just as the Doctor was about to reach the main room with the generator, a large hand came crashing through the roof of the tunnel. The Doctor only barely managed to get out of its way.
“It’s here, tell them you’ll fry its leader if the spare giant eats me.” The Doctor said as he backed away from the giant clawed hand.
“Hello can you hear me? We know what you’re up to. Your spare giant failed. Call it off or I’ll kill your leader.” Exelicos barked through the speaker.
“We do not command the giants. They command us. We would rather it backed off so as to spare our king, but if another giant doesn’t care then we cannot stop him” the leader of the Mylerax responded.
“Doctor, I’m afraid it doesn’t care if we kill the other giant. I’m not surprised there’s not any honour among those brutes. You’ll have to get out of there now!”
“I can’t. Billions of worlds are at stake” The Doctor replied as he struggled to think of a plan.
The giants hand swung towards the Doctor who barely managed to dodge it and quickly ran towards the generator. The whole room began to shake as the monster broke its way in from above, and the Doctor was trapped! Still the Doctor kept a level head and headed over to the control panel.
“Come on, come on” the Doctor said in frustration as he operated the machine. The roof soon caved in completely , and the monsters hand began to reach down towards the Time Lord.
The Doctor however managed to fire a large bolt of blue lightening from the long strip of energy in the middle of the cave against the giant. The creature let out a scream that echoed through all of the caves. Within a matter of seconds the monsters flesh sizzled, boiled and began to drip off of its bones before its lifeless carcass dropped to the ground, causing a small quake in the process which knocked the Doctor off his feet.
“Doctor, Doctor? Come in?” Exelicos shouted frantically.
“Its okay, I’m fine. The giant tried to get me, but I was able to sciphon off just a tiny bit of the power from the compacted sun at the beast. It was risky, but I managed it. Even a brute that size couldn’t withstand that power.”
“Well done Doctor, I didn’t think it was possible to take down one of those monsters.”
“Well don’t thank me yet, It’ll probably take me twice as long to get the forcefield up now that I had to mess with the energy supply.”
Mirash. Reosa and Dana had heard the giants screams and headed to the main generator.
When the two ladies arrived at the generator they saw the giants hand slumped from the roof by the blue strip, its sizzling, burnt flesh slowly dripping from its arm.
“Dana, Reosa I can’t tell you how happy I am to see you.” The Doctor said as he worked on the machine.
“What are you doing with this, what the hell is it” Reosa asked.
“The power to another universe. The scientists of this facility, they created another entire universe up stairs. It’s no bigger than a couch from our perspective, but from the inside, its just as big as ours. These creatures that are attacking us, they’re from that universe. They took it over and now they want ours. If I can’t find a way to block them, they’ll invade billions of worlds across this universe.”
“I believe you come from their universe young lady” the Doctor said to Mirash.
“How do you know this?” Mirash asked.
“I met a friend of yours, Exelicos. He told me everything about your people. I’m sorry I can’t help them now, but hopefully if I get this barrier around their reality, then it will buy us time to help them.”
The Doctor tossed his communicator to Mirash.
“Excelios, can you hear me.”
“Mirash! I can’t believe it, I didn’t think any more of us could have survived.”
“I’m the last one. Those monsters, they killed us all.” She paused for a minute to let Excelios take it in.
“Your friend here seems confident he can stop those monsters.”
The Doctor interrupted.
“I just said I was our best bet. I never said how good a bet that was.”
Suddenly Exelicos noticed something on the monitor. The second giant had begun to wake. As it hoisted itself up, the Mylerax approached it and said.
“Please master don’t move. The scientists have a bomb rigged up behind you. It will explode if you try to move. The giant looked around at the machine for a few seconds before smacking the Mylerax across the room.
“Morons!” It shouted before smashing the machine to bits. “This worthless piece of tech is burnt out. Any idiot can see that. All of you find that meddling scientist.” It screamed.
Exelicos looked on in horror as all of the monsters on every floor headed towards the caves.
“The giant’s woken up, it knows we were lying Mirash, they are all headed your way, get out of there now.”
“We have to go, every monster in the facility is headed down here.” Mirash said.
“I can’t, I just need a few more minutes.” The Doctor said as he frantically worked at the controls.
“Doctor you heard her those things” Dana said.
“I know, I know but if we leave now, they’ll get us wherever we go.”
Suddenly the Doctor, Dana and Mirash heard the sound of screaming coming from down the tunnel. Dana and Mirash moved slowly towards the tunnel whilst the Doctor worked on the machine.
“Remember I have one shot left” Mirash said.
Just then three of the large blue creatures came charging down the tunnel. Thinking quickly, Dana grabbed Mirash’s gun and shot at the ceiling just in front of them. She could see it was weak and crumbling after the giant had collapsed on it. The entire structure caved in and even buried two of the monsters, whilst blocking the others off.
Dana breathed a sigh of relief, but three of the phasing monsters soon emerged through the rubble.
“Oh right I forgot they could do that.”
The monsters attacked both Dana, Reosa and Mirash who tried to fight them, but every time they tried to land a blow the beasts simply phased through each of their attacks. The monsters in turn managed to land several slashes against the three women, including a deep one in Dana’s stomach that knocked her off of her feet. Two of monsters grabbed Dana by either arm and started to pull, whilst Mirash tried to help Dana, the other phasing monster was able to grab Mirash in a head lock from behind and tried to snap her neck.
“Stop” the Doctor shouted.
“Okay, I surrender.” The Doctor said as he walked slowly away from the control panel with his hands up.
The phasing beasts dropped the two women to the ground and approached the Doctor.
“You two, check the machine see if he’s tampered with it” the leader of the three shouted whilst grabbing the Doctor’s neck.
They obliged, but as soon as they touched the panel they both burned into nothing. The Doctor seized his chance and pushed the head phasing monster a few feet into the blue light before it could react. The monster was instantly vaporised it into nothing.
“What did you do” Dana said as she got up, despite the pain.
Suddenly the door behind the monitor broke down and one of the armoured monsters with a long tail came crawling through.
“No time for that now” the Doctor said as he climbed up the dead giant’s arm, with the other three women following him.
They managed to make it into the cavern above where the giant’s corpse lay. Most of its flesh had melted off, and its bones were charred.
The Doctor, Mirash, Reosa and Dana ran down the nearest tunnel, but they were forced to retreat into a nearby hole in a wall when several more Mylerax came running down the tunnel. Fortunately they didn’t see the Doctor or his three companions.
“Where are we going?” Dana asked.
“There’s a safe room on the bottom floor. We just have to get there.” The Doctor said.
“The last safe house wasn’t very safe.”
“I know but we’ll just have to hope they can’t find us. It’s below their universe.”
“Exelicos” the Doctor spoke into the communicator. “Are there any more on the bottom floor?”
“No, but you have to hurry, their crawling all over the place trying to cut off any point of exit.”
The Doctor, Dana, Reosa and Mirash quickly ran down the tunnel after the monsters had left which led to a hole in the ground. Below was just a short distance to some vents leading to the lowest level.
Several of the monsters of different breeds were running below however. The Doctor, Reosh, Dana and Mirash were again forced to wait for a few minutes before the horde had seemingly run by.
When they jumped on the ground however, one of the monsters noticed and alerted the others. The horde of creatures came charging after the Doctor, Mirash and Dana.
The Doctor, Reosa, Dana and Mirash managed to make it the vent, but one of the monsters, a Mylerax had kept close on their tail.
Unfortunately the Mylerax was too quick for them and just as the Doctor and his companions were about to make it to the room above the safe area, the monster managed to grab them both with one arm each and lifted the Doctor and his companion into the air.
They both kicked at the monster but it was futile. Mirash jumped at the Mylerax, but it overpowered her in seconds. Exelicos looked at what was happening on the monitor. Even after all this time he was still terrified, but he knew that he couldn’t leave the Doctor and the others to be torn apart by those monsters. If they caught the Doctor, they could force him into undoing whatever it was he had done to the generator, either through torture, or threatening Dana’s and the others lives.
The monster threw Mirash into Dana, knocking them both to the other side of the room. It then shoved the Doctor into a nearby wall with both hands. It wanted to make him suffer the most for humiliating its leader.
“Lets have some fun” it hissed as it started to slowly dig its claws into the Doctors stomach.
Before it could hurt the Doctor, Exelicos grabbed one of the guns from the fallen soldiers corpses, and shot at the beast several times. With its last ounce of strength the Mylerax hurled itself at Exelicos and snapped his neck like a twig.
The Doctor wasting no time hit the monster from behind with both hands, knocking it down. He then grabbed Exelicos’ weapon and shot the monster in the face as it made one final attempt to attack the Doctor.
“Come on they’re coming” the Doctor said to Dana as he tried to rouse her. He could hear the horde crawling from the vents just down the hall.
The Doctor alongside Reosa was forced to carry Dana who was still too weak from her wounds into the safe room which he quickly shut behind him.
In the safe room the Doctor could see on the monitors that the horde didn’t even both to search in the room their universe was contained, as they believed it was a dead end.
The Doctor made the finishing touches to his forcefield around the universe from here.
Dana started to wake.
“Its okay Dana I’m here”
“What, what happened, what did you do?”
“I was able to use the power from the compacted star at the center of this planet to create a barrier around their universe. It will stop them from sending any more of their kind into ours. I also used some residual energy to create a solar barrier around the generator. If any of the monsters touch it they’ll be vaporized as we saw down in the cave. It’ll only last for a few days however, though the forcefield that I had to power from up here, partially, will run indefinitely. We just have to wait the monsters in our universe already out.”
“Wait them out?” Reosa asked.
“Yes, the plague. You destroyed the last sample of the cure I assume? By my estimates within a few hours they should die. We just have to hope they can’t find us by then. I’m sorry Mirash but there is no.”
“It’s okay, Exelicos gave us all a sample of the cure.” Mirash said.
“Where’s your friend?” Dana asked.
The Doctor looked at Mirash.
“He sacrificed himself to save us Dana. Not just us, but all of the other worlds. If those things had found us, they would have forced me to undo the forcefield. “
“I can’t believe it. I didn’t even get a chance to meet him and he gave up his life for me.” Dana said with regret.
“Lets just hope his sacrifice wasn’t in vain. We just have to keep our heads down and keep quite for the next few hours.”
The next few hours felt like days as the Doctor, Reosa Mirash and Dana watched the monsters anxiously on the monitor. The giant tore just about every room it came into in rage and even killed several of its underlings. Several more of the monsters tried to fix the generator, but each time they were vaporised thanks to the Doctors booby trap.
After several hours, the monsters began to fall over and die, one by one. Their deaths all looked so peaceful, though that was only because they had become so weak they could no longer fight anymore. The giant was the last to die. It collapsed on the third floor, that it had torn apart. The monster with its last action dug its claws into the corpses of one its minions, a Mylerax who it cursed with its dying breath for failing it.
Even after the monsters died the Doctor waited 10 or so minutes to make sure that they weren’t just tricking him.
“I’m sorry Mirash that we couldn’t help more of your people.” Dana said as she and the Doctor prepared to leave.
“You already have. The monsters are vulnerable now. They can’t escape their universe and when our creators arrive I’ll make sure that they fix the mess they created.”
“I’ll make sure of it.” Reosa said.
“I can’t believe this facility allowed so much suffering to happen. It was supposed to help the galaxy.”
“They thought they were doing a good thing. Creating life, trying to figure out their own existence. They were careless.”
“Careless? My son is dead, my entire team, her people, and that’s all you have to say.” Reosa said angrily to the Doctor.
“I’m sorry for your loss, but this actually had nothing to do with me. It’s a long while since I worked here, I was just passing through and I think it’s time I left.”
“We should stay Doctor.” Dana said. “We can’t just leave them to deal with this alone.”
“Trust me we’ll just overcomplicate things. You saw how the rescue team reacted to us. Reosa can back up the story.”
“He’s right this isn’t your mess to clean up” Reosa said. “You need to go now.”
It would take the Doctor and Dana several hours to make their way back through the facility, the caves and the jungle below. Along the way Dana would place her coat over Exelicos’ corpse as a sign of respect. It was the least she could do she felt.
It took them another hour or so once they reached the jungle to find the TARDIS from where the giant had thrown it.
“What did he do to you old girl” the Doctor bemoaned.
Dana however wasn’t in the mood for his jokes.
“Doctor, do you think they’ll really help Mirash’s people. I’m worried that when they see what a danger that universe is, they’ll.”
“I can assure you there is no way the people of this galaxy would condemn an entire universe.”
“They were amoral enough to create it.”
“No not amoral Dana. Like I said to Reosa, they were curious and reckless. They wanted to find out how our reality itself had been created. Credit to them, they were able to work out the mechanics of it, but in some ways they’re still no closer to finding out why it’s here? Suppose our reality is also just a lab experiment like Mirash and Exelicos universe? It’s possible, we both now know that an entire universe can be contained in a tiny sphere, however what about the universe our one exists as an experiment in? Does it exist in a lab in another reality? And then that universe? And then that one? It really is turtles all the way down no matter how you try and square it. Like most people who go in search of answers to the big questions, the people of this facility just ended up creating more questions. Sadly like a lot of others they also paid for it with their lives.”
“It was still amoral of them not to try and help Mirash’s people.” Dana replied.
“They did. They tried to help all the people’s of the universe they had created and look where it ended up? If they had ruled over the races they had created, even benevolently, would you have viewed them as dictators?”
“Well that’s why you don’t play god.” Dana said.
“I agree, but consider this. Had they not played God, Mirash and her people wouldn’t exist at all. Yes they are living through a dark age now, but so have both our species. In as little as a century they could be free, and living in a golden age. With this in mind would you have not wanted their race to exist at all? Imagine we travelled back and discovered our universe was just an experiment in a lab? Would you rather that its creators decided our fate for us? How would they decide which species live and die? Suppose they had decided to interfere and spare the Dinosaurs? Then you wouldn’t exist. Would you rather that none of this existed at all to end the torment throughout the entire history of this universe?”
“What are you saying Doctor.”
“I’m saying that whilst we may have stopped the immediate crisis, there will be no easy answers for Mirash’s people, their universe or its creators. They have a long, very difficult road ahead of them and whatever decision they make there will be mistakes. As callous as it may sound I’m glad it’s not our problem anymore, and I can just back sit in the TARDIS with a good book.”
“Yes well we can’t fix everything.” Dana said with regret. “I suppose we can always pop in a few years and see how things are doing.”
“If we’re needed we will, but right now we’d only overcomplicate things. Come on Dana I think it’s time I revisited my book collection.” The Doctor said as he and Dana departed in the TARDIS for another time and another place.
The Fire of the Daleks