Marconius Dransus, third and youngest son of the king of Phelonia, walked slowly down the mountainside, pausing only to glance back up the slope and ensure that he was not being followed. It was not easy getting time to himself at the palace, where his every move was watched by body guards and a phalanx of servants. He had come to hate them all, with their backward ways and their inability to recognise the signs of his mounting frustration. He wanted to be left alone.

Phelonia was a large kingdom, the largest of two land continents making up the planet of Phelon, far out across the galaxy in a place where no other inhabited planets had developed. It was a lonely existence, but that did not seem to worry the other Phelonians. Even the more adventurous Orphelians, living on the smaller continent, did not allow their thoughts to stray beyond their homeworld. For them there was no other life, save the one that they lived together.

Marconius slipped and slithered down the last of the rocky slopes of the mountain and headed off on the flat, grassy land that he encountered instead. A tangle of thistles tried to grab at his ankles, but he knew them all, and knew exactly where to put his feet. Flowering bushes captured his attention for only the briefest of moments, and he ignored the rushing, pounding noise of the nearby sea. Today he was heading inland.

A young man in his early twenties, Marconius Dransus was smaller than most of his fellow Phelonians, and with good reason. He was a half-breed, for his mother had come from a faraway planet named Araphen, and he bore little resemblance to those others who trod the same soil as he. They were uniformly blond and grey of eye, and they wore their hair in an upswept crest, for it was stiff and grew that way more or less naturally. In contrast Marconius had darker skin than his fellows, and eyes that were almost black in colour. His black hair flopped forward over his forehead, sometimes getting into his eyes, and his shoulders were fashioned more broadly. He wore his princely uniform well; a blue tunic and grey leggings, with a short cloak of darker blue and calf length boots polished to a high sheen, by some unknown palace servant whose face he might very well never lay eyes upon. A short sword hung in his belt, trained to a fine edge by his own hands. It was largely a ceremonial weapon, but he had learnt to use it as was expected. It was the one possession that meant anything to him, and the one part of his life that he did not regret.

Marconius reached the forest sooner than he had expected, and he pushed his way in through the closely growing trees. Branches caught at his clothing and his hair, and brambles worked their way through the cloth to scratch at his skin, but he was soon through the worst of the undergrowth and the going became quite easy. His stride acquired an easy swing and he began to whistle, enjoying the cool air and the sound of the birds. There were many birds on Phelon, and many animals. All Phelonians were vegetarian, as were most Orphelians. All were pacifists. There was little on Phelon to disturb the peace, and little reason to suspect that it would ever be disturbed. All was quiet, all was still; until now. For as Marconius wandered onwards through the woods, and came to the broad, blue lake at its centre, he heard a strange sound that he had never heard before; an extraordinary moaning, creaking sound which echoed about him. Before his eyes a squared, blue shape appeared, balancing precariously on the rocks beside the lake, and the young prince slipped back into the trees. His eyes widened as the blue box, its creaking now silenced, seemed to settle itself in contentment into its new resting place. Unknown and almost unseen, the TARDIS had arrived on Phelon.


"Where are we?" There was a mutinous sound to the young woman's voice, and the expression in the Doctor's eyes was almost that of guilt.

"Er... not sure." He flashed her a smile. "Air's breathable, scenery's quite pleasant. Do you fancy a walk?"

"No." She glared at him, her bright eyes shining from within her pretty face. "What I want is to go home."

"Yes. Yes, er... quite, quite." He shrugged. "All the same, this is a good deal more... green than Liverpool. Wouldn't you say?"

"It's a forest. We're stuck in the middle of a forest." Her glare became more intense. "Still, I suppose there might be a policeman out there."

"Or whatever the local equivalent is." The Doctor frowned at his readings. "I'm afraid that they won't be sending you home, though. I can't detect any signs of technology here at all. No electricity, no nuclear power; not even basic machinery. There are no pollutants in the atmosphere."

"Is that good or bad?" She pulled the lever to open the door and strolled out of the ship, her bad mood dissipating at the touch of cool forest air on her skin. "Actually it is quite pleasant."

"And very quiet." He sounded intrigued by the planet, and Suzy did not know him well enough to recognise the dangers implicit in that. She merely smiled, feeling quite friendly towards him all of a sudden.

"Very quiet. It might be nice to spend a while here."

"Jolly good idea." He flashed her a broad grin, greatly heartened to see it returned. "Look, Suzy, I... well I've been meaning to apologise. I - I - That is--"

"Save it, Doctor." She strode away, clambering down the rocky embankment that the TARDIS has chosen to land on. "I haven't decided whether or not to like you yet."

"Yes, of course." He followed her down the slope, giving her assistance when she requested it. It was almost enjoyable to get the chance to exercise his gentlemanly skills again; he had been accompanied by capable, strong women for so long that he was rather used to letting them do things alone. He rather got the impression that he would tire rather quickly of this new game, however. He was going to have to bring Suzy McConnell out of the nineteen fifties eventually. There seemed to be a strong streak of impatience in this new incarnation, and the thought of spending the next however many years opening doors and offering his hand did not fill him with any great amount of enthusiasm.

In the trees, Marconius Dransus watched the appearance of the two people with astonishment. That two fully grown humanoids could fit inside such a small space was remarkable; let alone that they should consider travelling in such cramped quarters. He was filled with a desperate desire to know more about them, but found his heart pounding violently inside his chest. He tried to stir himself to movement, but excitement slowed him, and the pair were almost upon him before he could summon the nerve to step forward. The young woman jumped back at his sudden appearance, and gasped in shock, but the man merely grinned broadly and offered his hand. Marconius rather got the impression that this strange individual often met people in odd places.

"Hello, old chap. I'm the Doctor." Marconius shook his hand automatically, seeing a man some years younger than his father, with wavy brown-grey hair and a face that was somewhat more than merely pleasant looking. A ready smile lit the man's eyes, and the Phelonian felt quite drawn to him, despite the clothing that he could only think of as weird.

"I am Marconius Dransus, third--" He broke off, smiling. "Marc. My name is Marc."

"Hello Marc. This is Suzy McConnell, my, er... friend." He smiled back at the young woman. Marc shook her hand, amused by the sleeveless shirt and billowing white skirt. This girl reminded him of his eldest brother's wife. She too liked to dress in entirely impractical clothing.

"Hello," she said, sounding a little taken aback. "Can you tell me where we are? Are we still in England?"

"England?" He frowned at her. "This is Phelonia, the largest kingdom of Phelon. What is... England?"

"Doctor..." Suzy looked plaintively at her companion, who shrugged.

"I did try to warn you." He smiled at Marc. "Phelon? I'm not familiar with it. Star Geography was never my strong point."

"Few people will have heard of Phelon, I imagine." Marc's eyes drifted back towards the TARDIS. "Tell me, Doctor. Do you go into space in that... that box?"

"We do." The Time Lord sounded proud. "That, my boy, is the TARDIS. A tad unorthodox perhaps, but serviceable."

"Except that it can't get back to Liverpool." Suzy looked around. "Where's the nearest town, Marc? I'm starving."

"There's plenty of food on board the TARDIS," the Doctor told her. She nodded.

"But no fast food. And no coffee."

"Sorry." He looked back towards Marc. "Er... Is there a town near here?"

"There is the village at the foot of the mountain, but there would be no food there beyond what the people eat. They grow what they need to survive." He frowned. "I could take you to the palace, but no one must see you, or you would be arrested."

"Arrested? What for?" Suzy sounded indignant. "I haven't done anything."

"You do not need to have committed a crime." The young man lowered his eyes. "I shall explain as we walk, if you'd like. This way." He brushed some branches aside in order to lead them forward through the forest. "The ways of Phelon are a little odd, to strangers. Or would be, if we ever had any visitors. Which we don't."

"Really? But it's so beautiful." The Doctor looked about, smiling up at a crimson bird which swooped low over his head. It looked like a fruit eating creature, to judge by its beak, and he felt his enthusiasm grow. If he was going to stay on Phelon for a while, he could begin a study of local fauna. He felt quite inspired by the thought. Perhaps they even had some interesting fish and mammalian life in the seas that the TARDIS readings had told him were quite close by. He was certain that there were some perfectly serviceable aqualungs somewhere in one of his long-ignored storerooms. Marc nodded at his comment.

"Yes, it is beautiful; if this is the sort of thing to catch your attention. Personally I would prefer something a little more... lively. Half of this world hardly seems to be alive at all."

"Well those chaps look lively enough." The Doctor had spotted six men, dressed in what appeared to be some kind of uniform, heading in their direction. They were all armed with short swords in a style similar to that carried by Marc, and all wore dark blue cloaks. He raised a hand in greeting.

"Oh no." Marc lowered his head. "Guards, from the palace. They'll have come to find me." His expression changed quickly. "You have to try and convince them that you are outsiders, not that you came here from some other planet. If they know that--" He broke off as the six men approached. "Good day."

"Good day, Your Highness." The leader of the six bowed his head in deference to the king's youngest son. "Might I inquire as to what you were thinking, going out on your own in the forest?" His eyes strayed to the Doctor and Suzy, widening in disbelief. "Are these friends of yours, sir?"

"I am quite safe alone in the forest." Marc sounded hot. "And yes, these are friends of mine. Suzy McConnell and the Doctor." He winced almost as soon as he spoke the Time Lord's name. The guard's shoulders squared.

"Doctor?" he asked, sounding disbelieving. "Your Highness, I must remind you of the law. Have you forgotten--"

"I have forgotten nothing." Marc laid his hand on his sword hilt. "I am the son of your king, and I say that they are my friends. Do you question me?"

"No sir. I only remind you that your father must be informed of this. Your... friends will be arrested as soon as they enter the palace."

"But why?" Suzy, deciding that she had kept quiet for long enough, stepped forward. It seemed strange enough to think that the strange young man they had just met should be royalty; and even stranger to think that he belonged to a culture willing to arrest somebody for committing no crime at all. "We haven't done anything."

"You are under arrest because is it firmly in evidence that you are not of this world; and your friend is also a doctor." The lead guard turned bright eyes towards her. They carried, thought the Doctor, more than a hint of mad fervour.

"That's right, old chap," he said pleasantly. "I'm a doctor of many things, but not, I fear, of medicine. Does that bother you?"

"You admit to it. You flaunt it." The lead guard stepped back, drawing his sword. "Sir, I have no choice but to place you under arrest. Will you come quietly?"

"Well if you'll tell me what I've done, certainly." Smiling, the Time Lord stepped forward, hands held out from his sides in a gesture of easy compliance. "I would be happy to co operate in all ways."

"Don't move!" The rest of the little group of guards drew their swords, all six blades turning to point at the Doctor. Marc moved forward, but the lead guard grabbed him by the wrist, pulling him out of the way.

"Keep back, Your Highness," he ordered. "Move to the rear of the troop, sir. I will watch this - this scientist."

"Eron, he is my friend." Marc tried to pull free from the guard's grip, but found it impossible. The Doctor interceded.

"Marc, hang back, be a good fellow. There's no sense in causing a scene." Bright black eyes shone at him, then the young prince relaxed slightly and nodded.

"As you wish, Doctor. I shall speak to my father as soon as we are back at the palace." His head lowered. "In the meantime I must apologise for the disgraceful conduct of my guards. You must understand the hysteria that the mere mention of science causes all of them."

"Mind your tongue, Your Highness." There was no respect in the lead guard's voice now, and Marc looked toward him in contempt.

"And you mind yours, Eron." He retired to a safe distance and the small group began to move forward through the trees. Suzy looked up at the Doctor, worry clear in her eyes.

"Doctor? Are these people really going to put us in prison?"

"It would certainly look that way." He took her hand, holding it lightly in one of his own. "Steady on, old thing. It'll work out okay."

"It had better do." She held more tightly onto his hand, and tried not to look too afraid.


King Phylorus of Phelonia stretched languidly in his throne and stared down at the group before him. He was an imposing figure in his full royal gown, his upswept blond hair longer than that of most Phelonians. Chains of precious metal hung around his throat, and his crown looked suspiciously heavy; but his neck, theorised the Doctor, unmoved by all the splendour, had presumably been trained from an early age to bear the extra weight.

"Do you really need to bring this to me, Eron?" the king asked, sounding bored. "These people are not from this planet, so unless they claim to have been brought here by some other alien force, they are quite clearly guilty."

"As I thought myself, Your Highness." Eron bowed low, his crest of stiff hair almost sweeping the floor. "I merely thought that since your son was involved--"

"My son is my problem, Eron, not yours." Phylorus stood up, staring down at the Doctor and Suzy. He found their appearance strange, with their unusual hair, and their differing eye colours. Such alien appearances bothered him greatly. "He refuses to accept the rules of his world, and he always has. I see no reason to make it an issue now. Escort these two to the cells."

"But father." Stepping forward, Marc stiffened his back, attempting to stand to attention and show at least some respect. "You don't understand. These people aren't evil, or dangerous."

"They have science, Marc. No more will be said on the matter." The king tuned around and began to walk away. "We will talk of this later, when you have spent some time in silent meditation and consideration of the laws of your people. Kindly retire now, or I will order a guard to escort you."

"Fine." Marc turned about, his eyes catching the Doctor's for a brief moment. The Time Lord thought that he saw something there to suggest that the young prince intended to try to help him, but he could not be sure. He smiled, deciding that now was a good time to break his uncharacteristic silence.

"Your Highness?" He turned to Phylorus, bowing with practised ease. His billowing shirt gave him a vaguely swashbuckling appearance, which matched the extravagant gesture. "Might I be permitted to speak?"

"You are the Doctor?" The king waved his hand briefly. "Very well. What do you wish to say?"

"Only that your son is right. We mean none of you any harm. We had no idea that your laws involved such marked opposition to scientific matters, and if it bothers you that much, we're more than happy to leave." He felt his polite façade begin to slip. "Believe me, it would be our pleasure."

"I'm sure." Phylorus smiled a slight, hard smile. "But the laws are clear, Doctor. You are here, and here you must remain. Take them away." Four of the guards grabbed the Time Lord and his young human companion. "Perhaps in fifty years, Doctor, you will get the freedom that you seek. You will not see the outside of the dungeons before then."


The Doctor leant against the cold stone wall, blowing morosely on his harmonica. It was rather effective in such moments, in his opinion at least; but clearly Suzy had other views. She glared at him.

"That's hardly a fitting tune, is it," she muttered. He frowned, uncertain quite what he had been playing. He had rather liked the melancholy feel. Shrugging, he switched to Jailhouse Rock, but his friend did not appear to appreciate that either. Her glare deepened, and he grinned around the harmonica.

"I take requests," he told her, his tone light. She almost smiled, and his own smile broadened. "Ha. Gotcha."

"You did not." She sighed. "Are we really going to stay here for the next fifty years, Doctor?"

"Not if I have anything to say about it. Now as Houdini used to say--"

"You knew Houdini?" She took an interest now, and he smiled.

"Strange chap. Once asked me to lock him in a cage in the centre of the TARDIS. Seemed to think that he could get back to the control room in under ten minutes." He shook his head. "We never went through with it, but I'm not sorry. It's taken me around forty years or more to get used to the old girl, and I don't think I could find my way back from the centre without a map. He'd still be wandering around there now."

"Maybe he could get me back to Liverpool." She smiled up at him, her eyes somewhere between sad and resigned. "I always wanted to see a little more of the world, but a grand tour of Prisons Of The Universe wasn't exactly what I had in mind."

"Yes, well I'm sorry about that." He put his harmonica away and sat down next to her, looking truly serious for possibly the first time since she had met him. "Suzy, when we get out of here... I promise you that I will do everything in my power to get you home. I never meant to cause you any distress, I--" He shrugged and turned away, standing up. "I didn't know you. I wasn't sure that you could be trusted. Now that I know differently you have my full and unreserved apology."

"Thankyou." She smiled at his back, her eyes surprisingly gentle. "Right now though, I'd rather you worried about how to get us out of this cell."

"Actually I was rather hoping that Marc would help out with that." He turned towards the door, peering out through the barred window. "Let's see... five minutes to escape from his guards, say... ten minutes to get down here... Another five minutes to be sure that the guards are gone, and I'd say that he should be appearing any moment now."

"Yeah, sure." Suzy did not sound at all hopeful, but at that moment there was a sharp rap on the door. The Doctor grinned at her and she scowled. "You saw him coming."

"No comment." Looking innocent he stepped aside, listening to the sounds of hasty hands on the lock. After a second the door opened, and Marc smiled at the pair.


"Hello." Looking about, the Doctor led the way out into the corridor. "Jolly good to see you."

"I'm glad. We have to move quickly." The prince turned to move away, beckoning for them to follow him. "I know a place where we can be safe."

"Somewhere far away from the palace, I hope," Suzy muttered. He smiled at her.

"Not exactly." They reached the main corridor beyond the dungeon, and he glanced up and down before ushering them out of the prison block. "Come on. We have to move fast, before the guards realise that I sent them on a wild goose chase."

"Where are we going?" Finding the run through the corridors oddly exhilarating, the Doctor kept pace with his young guide easily. Marc gestured towards an alcove in the corridor wall, where three tapestries hung together. They depicted scenes of nature and great tranquillity.

"Here." He pulled aside the middle tapestry and gestured behind it. "There's a sort of handle, built into the stone."

"Got it." Finding the small depression in the rock, the Doctor twisted it slightly, hearing the soft grind of gears from somewhere within the wall. A small doorway was revealed, and he pushed Suzy through. Marc followed, and the Time Lord, taking a last swift look about the palace corridor, slipped after them. The door eased itself shut and the tapestry fell neatly back into place. As silence and normality returned to the alcove, Guardsman Eron, his hand on his sword hilt, wandered out of a tributary corridor with an unreadable expression on his face. He stared at the centre tapestry and ran his hand across its woven surface; then he turned about and walked away, the faintest of frowns breaking the smooth skin of his forehead.


"My planet is very old." Sitting down on the solid wooden chair in the centre of the room that he had led them to, Marc gestured to the other chairs gathered about him, indicating that the TARDIS crew should sit. The furniture looked ancient, and yet was in strangely good condition. "Even when other planets were first developing intelligent life, my people were learning about science. They discovered electricity and machinery at a point in their development when other races were barely learning to talk. Their whole society and culture was based around science. All that they cared about was the development of newer and better ways to do things. Scientists were revered." He looked away for a moment. "Then the war began. The people of Orphelia insisted that their ways were best, and the Phelonians argued the same. They turned the full might of their scientific knowledge against each other. There was devastation of the kind that you can only imagine. Everything was destroyed. Eventually the people decided that it had to stop. Newer and better weapons had been built, and the people had learned to hate everything that science had created. To them it meant war, and death. All of the scientists, the doctors, the teachers - every one of them was executed. But without them, there was no true life on Phelon. There had never been any art, or music, or literature. Only science. Without it... nothing." He shrugged. "Their civilisation collapsed. Without science to support it, there was no agriculture. There was no medicine. There was famine and disease everywhere. And that is when the Androids came."

"Androids?" Sitting up, the Doctor frowned. "What sort of androids?"

"I don't know. The records were very vague, but they were metal creatures of some kind. Robots perhaps, or cyborgs. Most likely androids. They came, and they took over the planet. They enslaved my people, and killed many. It was like that for a thousand years or more. With no technology, and no weapons, there was no defence against them. They ruled the planet as though it were their own, and then one day they left. Without warning. It seems that their home planet came under attack, and they went back to save it. My people managed to rebuild their lives, but with the stories of the before times, and everything that they had suffered under the rule of the Androids, they became convinced that science and everything about it was evil. Corrupt, worthless, traitorous. They became pacifists, and they renounced all but the most basic forms of technology. When the town was built at the foot of this mountain the people would not even use pulleys to help them to move the stone. That is how deep the feelings run."

"I see." Standing up, the Doctor began to pace. "And so every sign of science is punished. That's why we were locked up?"

Marc bowed his head.

"Science is a sin," he murmured softly. "Every child is taught it from the cradle. It has become a part of religion, to renounce all that is or may be scientific. Even to learn to count is frowned upon in some towns. Maths is seen in the same light as the sciences."

"Tragic." Shaking his head slowly the Doctor sighed to himself, thinking of the world above him, and the people there who would never know the simple pleasure of listening to the radio, or flying an aeroplane. Even scuba-diving was denied to them. "Truly tragic."

"I agree." Marc gestured about. "What you see is all that remains of the old culture, before the Androids came. A few scientists escaped the massacres, and sealed themselves into these caverns. All of the books and equipment that they could save were put here, in the hope that the hysteria would pass." He smiled sadly. "It never did."

"Books and equipment?" Looking delighted, the Doctor stared around. "Technical manuals? Encyclopaedias?"

"Yes. And much more." Marc stood, gesturing towards another door at the far end of the cavern. "I'll take you to them. The knowledge in them is the best of the old time. The palace scientists were the greatest that there were. They designed the building itself, which is why it wasn't destroyed during the war and during the Android invasion."

"Excellent!" Sounding rather like an overly enthusiastic schoolboy, the Doctor hurried after the prince. "Tell me, Marc. How is it that you don't hate science in the way that the others do?"

"Because I'm different, Doctor." He spoke it as though it were a curse. "You saw the others, surely? They are all like that, in Orphelia as well. All blond, with stiff hair that stands up. All with pale skin and grey eyes. But my mother came from another planet."

"She had science?" Intrigued, the Doctor hesitated. Marc nodded.

"Her ship crashed here one day. The others on board were killed, and most people wanted to kill her too, because of who she was and what she represented. My father asked for leniency, and they fell in love. His first wife had died several years previously; following the birth of their second son, my brother Mykonicus. So my father married my mother instead. Her name was Sayda, and she came from a planet named Araphen. She loved my father, I think, but she felt very lost out here, with no hope of ever returning to her own planet. She found this place, and she spent much of her time here, trying to build a space ship to take her home. Then one day she fell from the cliffs into the sea, and was killed. They said that it was an accident, but I believe that she was murdered. She had many enemies here."

"I'm sorry." They had reached a larger cavern, and the Doctor looked about in amazement at the shelves of books. They seemed to go on forever. He saw a rough shape made from metal and gestured to it. "Is that the ship she was trying to build?"

"Yes." Marc went to it. "She showed it to me a few days before she died, when I followed her here. I tried to finish it, but I don't have the skill. All of the knowledge is in my head, but my fingers don't seem to want to do as they're told."

"I know that feeling." The Doctor crossed to a computer terminal and sat down before it. It was easy to access the computer's main database, and he scanned through the information flashed onto the screen. "Interesting."

"Looks like it." Arms folded in a picture of abandoned boredom, Suzy peered over his shoulder. "Where are all those words and pictures and things coming from?"

"The hard drive." The Time Lord grinned, thinking about the lessons he was going to have to give the young woman if she was to stay with him for much longer. "Never mind." Something caught his eye and he frowned. "Your predecessors believed that the Androids would return one day."

"Yes, I know. There are old stories about that which date back a long way. I tried to mention it to my father, but he won't even have the Androids spoken of inside the palace. I can't exactly tell him about what I know. He would have this whole place destroyed, and everything with it."

"The way of the fanatic." Nodding vigorously, the Doctor turned away from the computer. "So much knowledge, all going to waste. You don't belong in a world this backward, Marc."

"I know." The prince lowered his eyes momentarily. "Doctor..."

"You want to come with me, so that perhaps we could find Araphen." Smiling, the Time Lord nodded. "It seems fair enough. After all, you did rescue us."

"Really?" The young prince frowned. "There will be room for us all in the little box?"

"Plenty. There are one or two things I shall enjoy telling you about my TARDIS." Springing to his feet, he went over to the bookshelves, reading through the titles. "We'd better be off, I suppose. Is there a way down the mountain from inside here?"

"A tunnel which comes out onto the beach." Marc rubbed his hands together. "It's a long walk back to your ship, though."

"Then we'd better get going, hadn't we." Suzy looked pointedly at the Doctor, who nodded.

"Yes, alright. Be right with you both."

"Doctor..." She caught him by the arm, forcibly leading him on through the cavern. "They're just books."

"Fountains of knowledge," he corrected her, glancing back at the shelves with a torn expression on his face. He sighed, sounding wistful. "I love books."

"We're leaving, Doctor." She virtually pushed him out of the cavern, and on down the passage beyond. "You have enough books on the TARDIS to keep half the world's libraries happy."

"I've read them all." He looked sulky, but nonetheless quickened his pace, in line with her apparent urgency. "Are you sure that you know the way back to the TARDIS, Marc?"

"Quite certain, Doctor." The young prince adjusted his cloak as the passageway began to descend. "I hope that the pair of you are dressed more appropriately for the beach than I am."

"Hardly." Suzy looked down at her white shoes, thinking how waterlogged they would very soon become. Back home some charming local would have carried her across the damp ground, but she doubted that the Doctor would be making such an offer. She rather got the impression that he felt she should look after herself. Part of her liked the idea, but another part of her was distinctly unimpressed.

"Gallifreyan material is highly water-resistant." The Doctor smiled happily to himself, the prospect of a walk by the sea filling him with enthusiasm. He loved the sea, and particularly the creatures and plants that lived within it.

"Is Gallifrey where we're going next?" Marc asked him. The Doctor laughed shortly.

"I think not, if it's all the same with you. Gallifreyans don't like me very much, as a rule."

"On the run from your own people." Marc smiled sadly. "Soon I shall know exactly how that feels. I--" He broke off. "Doctor, I must ask you to take me to the first technologically capable planet that we come across. I need to speak to some people with a decent military."

"If you want to launch a military strike against Phelon, you're asking the wrong chap to help you." Coming to an abrupt halt mere yards from the tunnel entrance, the Doctor dug his hands into his pockets in a gesture of simple obstinacy. "I may not be a pacifist as such, but it will be a cold day on Mercury before I help with such a venture."

"It's alright. I didn't mean that." Marc led them out onto the beach, sinking into the damp sand beneath the rocks. "We have to be quick, before the tide comes back in."

"Then what did you mean?" As bothered by the turn of the conversation as was the Doctor, Suzy scrambled after the young prince. He glanced back towards her.

"Things that I have seen. Lights in the sky that shouldn't be there. Shooting stars that can't possibly be." He frowned, scuffing at the sand with his toes. "I think that the invasion is about to begin again. I think that the Androids are back."

"But it must have been centuries since they were last here!" Suzy shook her head. "Why come back now?"

"I don't know. They was something that they wanted before; the scientific knowledge of my people, I think. Perhaps now is the first true opportunity they've had to come back and try for it again. There have always been stories about a last enclave of science somewhere on Phelon; a place where the books and computers were hidden. They never found it before, and so they have to come back." He shook his head. "No one will believe me. I tried mentioning the lights in the sky to my brothers, but they dismissed it. I can't make anyone listen. That's why I have to go somewhere else; make a deal with some other planet, to try to get them to help defend us here. I can't just abandon my people."

"No, of course you can't." The Time Lord stood still, staring out to sea. "But if they have begun to return, where are they?"

"In Orphelia. It's smaller than Phelonia, and they could take it over in a matter of days. It takes six weeks to get from there to here, so the message would never get through in time."

"Orphelia is out there?" The Doctor nodded towards the horizon. Marc stood beside him.

"Yes. I've never been able to pinpoint its exact location. I've never actually been there." He shrugged. "There's a whole other continent like this one, that we have no form of communication with. Children, like the ones here. Half of them die by their fifth birthday, and I have the knowledge to save them. But no one will listen. And now, for all I know, they're about to be enslaved by machines built by some other race, and still they won't listen to me."

"It'll be alright. Come on and we'll get back to the TARDIS." Striding away, the Doctor accelerated slowly, leaving the others to hurry after him. "I detected no forms of technology on this continent when I landed here. I never thought to scan the other one."

"At least that means that the Androids are just in the other place, and not here too." Suzy made a face. "I don't want to run into some giant metal thing that's been built just for war."

"My people wouldn't stand a chance. I've never seen a picture of them, but word of mouth says that they stood at least eight feet high, and carried cannons that fired light. Lasers, I suppose."

"I imagine so." The Doctor did not slow as he spoke, nor did he glance back over his shoulder. "Word of mouth does have a tendency to become exaggerated, though."

"Yes, of course." Marc hurried on after the Time Lord, trying to catch him up so that he could overtake. The Doctor himself was currently leading, and he had already indicated that he had no idea which way would take him back to his ship. "It doesn't matter though. My people are pacifists. Swords are the only weapons we have. However the Androids are armed, and however big they are, we still couldn't beat them. There hasn't been a war here since they left. Nobody would know where to begin fighting one."

"You're lucky." Suzy was remembering the war that she had lived through, some years back. "When I was a kid there was a war on my planet, and millions of people died. I can't even imagine millions of people. I've never seen more than a few thousand. The graveyards go on forever."

"Then I hope that I never have to see that." Marc gestured to a grassy path leading away from the beach. "Up here." He regained the lead of the little party, and struck out across the rough terrain. "Watch out for the ground. It can get pretty loose after a storm, and the bad weather season has only just finished."

"We'll be careful." Taking Suzy's hand, the Doctor helped her over a collection of rocks piled about on the ground. "This place has glacial characteristics."

"The work of gods, Doctor, not glaciers." Marc smiled bitterly. "The forest is this way."

They walked on, soon reaching the thick greenery of the forest. The branches caught at them as they passed, slowing their progress and hindering them in every possible way. Thick bushes seemed designed to catch at their feet as they passed, and Suzy began to regret her clothing. It was her waitress's uniform, and it was hardly ideal for clambering through thick undergrowth.

"We're nearly there." Marc led them towards a thick covering of bushes and leaves, pointing beyond it. "Your ship is on the other side of that."

"Jolly good." The Doctor positively bounced forward, then stopped suddenly, grabbing Suzy by the wrist and pulling her back before she could break through the cover.

"Doctor?" She looked up at him questioningly, but he shushed her and eased forward quietly. Beyond the bushes he could hear sounds that did not belong there, and as he edged even further forward the source of the noise became visible. Androids; large metal men of about eight feet in height, bearing cannon fixed to their shoulders; were pacing about by the lake, examining the outside of the TARDIS. Clearly their scanners had told them that it was something of interest.

"Oh no." He lowered his head and glanced back towards the others. They joined him, looking onto the scene that lay before them.

"Word of mouth exaggerates, does it Doctor?" Marc shook his head. "We're finished."

"And no technology on this continent?" Suzy raised her eyebrows. The Time Lord shrugged.

"Anybody can make a mistake," he offered rather lamely. "Come on. We have to warn somebody about this." He turned sharply about, stepping forward to return to the palace. A large shadow fell onto his face, and he froze very suddenly. Slowly he looked up.

"You will not move." The huge android standing before him stared ominously at the Time Lord, its eyes glowing a faint red. The cannon on its shoulder moved to point directly at him, and the Doctor smiled nervously.


"You are a prisoner of the Androids of War." The buzz from the cannon told the Doctor that it was armed and ready for use, and he raised his hands slowly. "Obey or you will die."


"Doctor!" Her voice hushed to a whisper through shock, Suzy started forward, but Marc grabbed her by the shoulder and dragged her back into the bushes.

"Quiet!" he hissed at her. "They haven't seen us yet."

"But--" She fell silent, pressing back into the darkest recesses of the undergrowth. "What will they do to him?"

"I have no idea. One thing that I do know is that they don't kill just for the sake of it." He peered out through the leaves towards the Time Lord and the Android confronting him. So far all that the pair seemed to be doing was staring at each other, the Doctor with a hesitant grin on his face. "If they don't find us, we have a chance. We have to get back to the palace and rouse the guard. With their help we might be able to do something."

"Such as? Poke one of them with a sword and it won't even flinch." Suzy shook her head. "We need something a little more decisive."

"What? We don't have a serious weapon anywhere on the planet."

"No, but you have the means to make one, right? Your secret lab? Somewhere in there, there has to be something that can help us. A book, or - or something. Anything that can tell us how to build something that might have a chance against those creatures."

"You're right." He nodded, smiling at her, then frowned. "Of course, the Doctor will have to take his chances for the time being."

"The Doctor can take care of himself." Even though she knew that this was true, she felt a burst of sadness at having to leave the Time Lord behind. She liked him, she realised in surprise; even though he had kidnapped her, and brought her to this place against her will. She really did care for him. "He'll be okay, I know he will."

"Fine. We have to make a run for it at the first chance we have." He took her hand. "Run fast, and don't look back."

"I will." She turned her eyes to watch the Doctor, wondering what he was thinking, and what was going to happen to him. He had to divert the Android's attention for just long enough so that she and Marc could make their escape. She was sure that he realised that; but she hoped that he knew what he was doing.


"Who are you?" Glaring down at its captive with determined eyes, the Android drew closer to him. "You are not from this world."

"Er... no, not exactly."

"The machine belongs to you?" Pointing towards the clearing, it could only be referring to the TARDIS, but the Doctor feigned ignorance nonetheless.

"Which machine?"

"That machine." The Android gripped the Doctor's shoulder, forcibly pointing him in the direction of the TARDIS, and the Time Lord grinned.

"Oh. That machine. Yes, that's mine."

"You will tell us of it." Almost dragging its prisoner toward the TARDIS, the Android did not notice the two other humanoid figures running swiftly from the undergrowth, and heading back through the forest. Instead it heaved the Doctor towards the others of its kind.

"I have found this creature," it announced, releasing the Doctor with a suddenness that made him stumble. He straightened his collar, smiling around at his hosts.


"This creature is not from this planet." The largest of the Androids stepped forward. "Does it own this device?"

"Firstly, sir, I am not an 'it'." Drawing himself up to his full height; which was not much when compared to the Androids, the Doctor sunk his hands deeply into his pockets in his favourite gesture of defiance. "I am the Doctor, and this is my ship. I object to your insistence on categorising it as a 'device'!"

"It shows resistance. It should be destroyed." One of the Androids stepped up, its cannon buzzing as it turned to point at the Time Lord. The biggest of the invaders raised an arm in a signal.

"No. I would speak to this one further." Its head tipped slightly onto one side. "What do you know of this world?"

"Enough to know that it's not terribly friendly." Sounding indignant, the Time Lord shook his head. "I only came here by accident, and they threw me in prison for my scientific knowledge."

"Then Phelonia has not changed." The lead Android was clearly pleased, and the Doctor winced inwardly for having provided what was obviously valued information. "This planet will soon be ours. The people will obey us or they will die."

"Why are you doing this? What can you hope to gain?" Moving closer to the huge creature, the Doctor had to tip his head back to look it straight in the eye. "You left here hundreds of years ago. Why return now?"

"The threat to our own world has passed. Now we can return to complete our program." It stared down at him. "Why should you care?"

"Because much as I dislike this backward little planet with its stupid little laws, I am rapidly coming to dislike you a great deal more!" He stared around at the group. "You want the scientific knowledge of these people's ancestors, because even in their cultural infancy they were more developed than your creators are now. So you come here, intending to destroy and enslave, until they give you what they aren't even aware that they own. They can't tell you anything because they don't know it! Science is a sin to these people! Whatever you do to them, they will tell you nothing!"

"Be silent, Doctor." His original captor put out a large metal hand, seizing the Doctor's shoulder and squeezing it hard. Trying not to wince at the pressure the Time Lord felt his knees begin to buckle. He gasped.

"I... have met many robots... androids... cyborgs... Deep down you're all the same... unimaginative... clumsy..."

"Release him. He is of no use to us in pieces." The lead Android caught the Doctor by the shirt front, pulling him closer. "You know much about this world for an outsider, Doctor. It may be that you can tell us more. You will stay with us for a while."

"Lucky me." He smiled up at the creature. "So what do I call you? Andy?"

"I am the Leader." It appeared to be glaring at him, despite the essential emotionless structure of its face. "You will address us by our ranks."

"The informal approach. How nice." Pulling free at the risk of tearing his shirt, the Doctor straightened his clothing again. "So where are we off to?"

"To the palace of the royal family. Once that is ours the rest of the continent will soon follow." The Leader pushed him, causing the Time Lord to stumble. "You will lead the way."

"Certainly." Glancing around, the Doctor shrugged inwardly. One direction was very like another, and in all honesty he didn't actually know which was the right one anyway. He could only hope that he might be able to win Marc and Suzy enough time to do whatever it was that they were doing. He hoped that they were doing something. "This way." He set off confidently, taking an easy stride.

"Do you trust this one?" one of the Androids asked the Leader. The large creature stared back at its confederate, eyes glowing.

"We trust nothing but our programming," it declared, in a deep voice. "But this one may be useful. We will keep it very close, and teach it to obey. It will learn." It gestured to the other Androids under its command. "The unit will move forward." One by one they moved off into the forest. Meanwhile, heading in the opposite direction, Marc and Suzy ran onwards towards the palace. With luck, they were heading towards victory.


It was a very tired but gleeful Doctor who finally led the way up the palace steps as the darkness of the night became complete. The handful of guards who tried to stop the progress of the Androids were dealt with swiftly, and the party moved onwards into the building. There was no chance of preventing the take-over, but even so the Time Lord was surprised at the speed with which the Androids made the palace their own. In no time the royal family was in their hands, and the entire population of the grand building was locked away. Only Phylorus and his two eldest sons were left unsecured.

"Greetings." Nodding its huge head at the threesome, the Leader eyed both Mykonicus and his older brother with evident interest. "Our information states that you have three sons. Where is the other?"

"Ask him." Glaring at the Doctor, Phylorus sat down in the nearest chair. "The last that I saw of my son, he was attempting to help this man."

"Is this true, Doctor?" Turning towards the first prisoner, the large creature tilted its head questioningly. The Doctor shrugged.

"I know him, yes. But I honestly don't know where he is now."

"And what of your young friend, Doctor. Where is she? With Marconius now?" Phylorus shook his head, anger clear in his every breath. "I should have recognised your arrival for the bad omen that it was. You are behind this invasion, aren't you. What have you done with my son?"

"Do I look as if I'm working with these things?" Allowing his anger to get the better of him momentarily, the Time Lord glared at the king, his exasperation growing. "Why can't you see beyond your own prejudice? The only person responsible for this invasion is you, with your refusal to allow this world to develop past the iron age. What is wrong with you man? Science is a part of natural progression, and without it--"

"Silence, Doctor." The Leader moved forward, its large metal fingers clamping around the Time Lord's shoulder in a way that it had already learned to be effective. The prisoner winced, trying to disguise the pain that burned through him. "You have a friend on this planet? One who travels with you in your ship?"

"Maybe." He looked up at the creature. "I don't know where she is, Leader. You have my word on that."

"This one has already proved that he cannot be trusted." One of the Androids stepped forward, its laser whirring. "We should kill him and begin our search of the palace. Interrogations must be initiated."

"That won't tell you anything." Teeth gritted against the pain in his shoulder, the Doctor stared up at the Android. "I've already told you that these people know nothing. If they were aware of some hidden treasure-trove of scientific knowledge they would have destroyed it."

"How is it that you know what we seek?" The Leader released him, spinning him about in the same movement so that they were facing each other directly. "Who told you about us, Doctor? Could it be that you have found the hidden knowledge yourself? That perhaps the other Phelonian is there, with your friend?"

"Science? Marconius studies science?" There was a shocked sound to Phylorus' voice, but the Doctor did not bother shooting him the disgusted look that he felt within him. He was too tired, and too wary of sparking further reprimands from the Leader. Instead he shook his head.

"I have no idea what you're talking about, Leader. I haven't even been here a full day yet."

"No doubt. But something tells me, Doctor, that with you time is not an issue." Without knowing the ironic truth of its statement, the Leader turned away, gesturing to one of its assistants. "Escort them to some secure place. All of them. We will talk further in the morning."

"Leader." Two of the Androids saluted stiffly, then began to usher the little group from the throne room. None of them resisted, and soon they were in a small room some distance away down the corridor. The Doctor sat down on the floor, no longer able to conceal his growing exhaustion.

"My own son. A scientist." Sinking to the floor, Phylorus stared accusingly at the Doctor. "Is this your doing?"

"Me? I've only just got here!" The Time Lord sighed. "He's curious. It's only natural. Your son is a very intelligent man, and he has more reason than most to know that your laws are stupid. Do you expect him to forget who his mother was?"

"How can any of us forget that? Every time I look at him I am reminded of what his mother was; what he is." Phylorus shook his head. "You don't understand, Doctor."

"Oh I understand." Despite his tired state, the Doctor found himself rising to his feet. "I understand very well! You're not the first fool that I've met in my lifetime, Phylorus, and I doubt that you'll be the last. You fell in love with a woman who knew about science, and yet you still claim that all who possess it are evil. On my planet, when we first developed the ability to move through Time and space, there were those who turned that ability to evil purposes. Many of my people believed that such powers were not safe in any hands. Then one day somebody else came along, who proved that we could use our knowledge for the good of the universe, as well as for the dark side. People are evil, Phylorus. Not science."

"Science is a sin." The king's oldest son moved between his father and the Doctor, looking dark. "If my brother has turned to science, he must be cast out of the family."

"Your brother is this planet's only hope. Right now he is trying to turn all that he knows into some way to fight back against these creatures. You know your history. You know how indestructible they proved to be the last time that they were here. Now I would suggest that they have been improved upon somewhat since then. Wouldn't you?" He sighed, his fatigue surfacing once again. "What's the point? Goodnight everybody." He sat back down, leaning his head against the wall and closing his eyes. "This is like trying to preach Communism to a Trump."

"Now you listen to me..." The heir to the throne was clearly incensed, despite his inability to understand this last reference. Phylorus merely waved a hand in the air.

"Not now, Phylos. I wish to meditate." He sat down cross-legged on the ground and closed his eyes. "We all have much to think about."

"But father--"

"Enough, Phylos." The king let out a deep breath, which sounded somehow troubled. "In the morning we shall see what will happen. For now we can do nothing but wait."


"Everything is quiet in the palace." Coming back down the passage which led to the tapestry in the corridor, Suzy sat down in one of the chairs, looking toward Marc. The young prince shrugged.

"There was no way that they could resist the Androids. They will all be prisoners by now."

"The Doctor managed to delay their arrival. We have that to be thankful for." She looked across at her friend, and at his collection of books and papers. "I wish there was something that I could do to help you."

"Do you know anything about science?" he asked her. She blushed.

"Little more than your people. My subject is languages. I speak fluent French and German, but that's not going to be much use to us here."

"You can still help. Go to the room with all of the books, and see if you can find anything by a man named Harkor Resk. He was a weapons expert before the denial of scientific ways."

"I'll get right on it." She jumped to her feet and hurried off. "We'll find something, Marc, don't worry. And we have the Doctor up there too. He's on our side."

"But he may not be able to do anything." Marc's eyes lowered at the thought of the amiable stranger who had wandered right into the midst of his planet's problems. He felt rather sorry for the strange man. "We can't count on his assistance."

"But maybe there are others who can help." The voice was soft and came from the passage leading back to the palace. Marc and Suzy spun around as one, and the prince's hand flew to his sword when he saw who was standing there.

"Eron." He stepped forward, not bothering to hide his hatred for the man. "What are you doing here?"

"The same as you, Your Highness. Looking for enlightenment."

"If you tell my father about this place, so help me I'll--" He broke off, looking suddenly worried. "Why aren't you with my father? Your duty is to protect him."

"I swore higher oaths than that." Eron nodded at the weapon in his prince's hand. "Are you going to use that, or are you going to let me finish?"

"I'll let you speak." Marc did not remove his hand from the hilt of his sword. "What are you doing here? How long have you known about this place?"

"Since I was a small boy." The chief of the guard took a few steps forward, revealing a band of his guardsmen behind him. "All of us knew of it. We belong to the Brotherhood of Phelon; an organisation older than your family."

"The Brotherhood of Phelon?" There was sarcasm in Marc's tone, showing that he did not believe a word of it. "And your Brotherhood is sworn to arrest innocent visitors, and tell my father about everything that I do?"

"Our Brotherhood is sworn to do what is necessary to defend the hidden knowledge of our people, until the time comes when we can re-educate the masses; bring these books and computers out of hiding, and spread the science and the technology that our fore-fathers amassed." The guard shrugged. "You have no reason to love me, Your Highness. I know that. But I can assure you that I had no intention of allowing your friend the Doctor, or this young lady, to stay in that prison indefinitely. I do only what is necessary to ensure that your father's faith in me remains unshaken. He has had reasons to be suspicious recently, and I had to make sure that he dismissed his misgivings. Higher oaths, Marconius."

"You want to help us?" Moving forward until she was between the pair, Suzy looked from Marc to Eron. "How many of you are there?"

"Twelve that are free, plus another three who are prisoners in the palace. I have four with me here, and the others have gone to fetch our weapons."

"You have weapons?" There was a flash of eagerness in Marc's eyes. Eron nodded.

"Some laser cannons, a few handguns. A handful of shock grenades. Not much, but enough to be going on with, until we can come up with something a little more impressive." He looked to Suzy. "Does your ship have any weaponry?"

"No. At least, none that I know of. It wouldn't matter anyway; only the Doctor can open the TARDIS. I don't have a key."

"Never mind." Eron glanced towards Marc. "What do you say, Your Highness? My men need to know that there is somebody prepared to fight with them. Your brother Mykonicus might, but he is a prisoner. Phylorus and Phylos are both so committed to the fight against science that they would have us executed for the mere suggestion of such a scheme. We need someone to lead us."

"You're the military man, Eron. I'm just a scientist." Marc smiled at this admission, surprised at how good it felt to say that phrase. "Alright, I'm with you I suppose. What's our first move?"

"To free the palace. If we can do that, it just might encourage some of the others to side with us, at least for now. Stopping the Androids has to be our first priority. If we can stop them this time, then we can stop them again if they ever come back."

"How can we free Orphelia as well? I thought it would take six weeks to get there?" Suzy shuddered. "Six weeks in a rowing boat doesn't appeal to me at all."

"It needn't take that long. We have been working on our own vessel; a ship, based on the design left by Sayda." Eron's tone showed that his respect for Marc's mother did not run deep, but the prince himself did not seem to notice this. Instead he merely looked excited by this new idea.

"And you didn't tell me?" he asked. Eron shrugged.

"If you had known about it, you might have become a liability. Until the time came when this planet was in danger, we couldn't be sure where your loyalties might choose to fall. You're only half Phelonian."

"You thought I might betray you to my father?" Marc looked angry, his dark eyes hot in contrast to the pale grey ones of the five Phelonians standing around him. "How could you think that? You must have known that I've been coming here."

"Yes. But we also knew that you were trying to finish your mother's ship. You would have finished it, too, had it not been for some minor faults in the design. Our work, I'm afraid. We knew that you were eager to leave the planet, and we couldn't allow you to do that while there was any chance that you might be on our side. You are vital to our plans for the resurrection of science on Phelon. The people will listen to us if we can use you as our figurehead."

"And you didn't tell me about the ship that you were building, in case I used it to try and escape to another planet." Marc smiled. "I suppose I very likely would have done. I had every intention of leaving."

"We were on our way when we ran into the Androids." The memory of this brought Suzy's thoughts back to the Doctor. She had been deliberately trying not to think of him, but now her worries resurfaced. "Have you seen anything of the Doctor up there, Eron?"

"No." He smiled at her. "He'll be fine, Suzy. He's a very resourceful man. I heard the Androids talking about how he led them on a wild goose chase looking for the palace. It should have been an hour's walk at the most, and he made it take more than five times that." She smiled too, heartened by this. "We'll have the palace free soon, Suzy. You and the Doctor will then be able to leave whenever you wish."

"We must have these weapons you mentioned." Marc took Suzy's arm. "Have you ever fired a gun, Suzy?"

"Me?" She stared at him. "Isn't that your job?"

"It's up to all of us if we're to defeat these creatures." He smiled at her horrified expression. "Don't worry, it's easy. I think."

"None of us have any real experience with the weapons, Your Highness." Eron led the way across the cavern, towards the skeletal spaceship. "We shall learn together."

"We had better learn well." Suzy felt a shiver run through her, excitement and fear mixing in equal measures in her blood. "There's more than just the palace depending on us."

"More than you think." Eron's smile did not lend her much confidence, and she frowned at his back as he bent over the half-finished ship, beginning to toy with the pieces. His expression, as he turned away from the others, was as unreadable as ever; but it looked as though there was some sadness mingled with the usual placidity.


Dawn awoke the Doctor, as it peered quietly through the windows of the room where he sat. He stood up, stretching in an attempt to work the stiffness out of the shoulder that the Leader had taken such pleasure in trying to crush the previous day. Fortunately there did not appear to be any real damage done, and he still had the full range of movement. His Gallifreyan physique protected him against the kinds of assault that his many human friends would have suffered greatly from.

"Oh what a beautiful morning," he quoted under his breath, peering out of the window. It was too small to climb through, and at any rate did not appear to lead anywhere but over the cliff. Athletic though this new body was, he did not fancy trying to climb down hundreds of feet of sheer rock. He thought about Marc's mother, who had met her end somewhere down in that mass of swirling foam, and decided that he definitely would rather find some other way to escape from the palace.

"Good morning, Doctor." He turned, surprised to discover that somebody else was awake, and found himself looking into the pale eyes of Mykonicus. The king's second son had evidently slept awkwardly, but was trying to make the best of stiff and cramping limbs.

"Good morning." His tone guarded, the Doctor frowned. "Was that a friendly greeting, or a requirement of royal courtesy? I'm afraid I find it somewhat hard to tell the difference."

"It was genuine." Mykonicus smiled. "We are not all as blinkered as my brother, or as easily led as my father." He frowned, his eyes lingering on the other members of his family, still asleep in the corner of the room. "Tell me something, Doctor. Is Marc really a scientist?"

"He is certainly very interested in that vocation. Why?"

"Because it interests me, too. We used to talk of it when we were children." He shrugged. "Talk was all we ever did; any of us. We never dared to do any more. There have always been rumours of secret societies guarding what old knowledge remains, but I could never get past all the myths. Someone somewhere on this planet just might have the secret of how to defeat the Androids."

"Someone somewhere does." The Time Lord headed towards the door. "But I'm rather afraid that they might not know how to use the knowledge that they have; which is why it's up to us as well."

"Of course."

"Can we count on your brother and the king?"

Mykonicus lowered his head.

"No. They'll do nothing. They would rather see this whole planet turned to rubble and ashes than allow science to be used in its defence. I, however, will do what is necessary." He frowned. "If you'll help me. I'm afraid that the only weapon I know how to use is a sword."

"That's the only weapon I've ever been happy about using." The Doctor smiled. "There are many ways to fight a battle, and not all of them are violent. I can show you how to make a difference armed only with your hands, your feet, and a few optional extras." He dug around in his pockets. "Let's see. We have... a torch... a ball of string... a penknife..." He dug deeper. "Ah! Paperclips. Never know when they'll come in handy."

"That's a torch?" Mykonicus took the device, turning it over in his hands. "A torch is usually a brand of burning wood, fixed to the wall by means of a bracket." He smiled. "I have much to learn; although that's not going to be easy. Everybody on this planet believes science to be so evil that is corrupts everything."

"There's nothing evil about a torch, Myk. Not even in the hands of the most ingenious madman. Not that I can think of off hand, anyway."

"I believe you." He clicked the switch on and off, watching the beam of light grow and fade. "Fascinating. Although I can't see how it can be of much use to us."

"We'll think of something." Sitting cross-legged on the floor, the Doctor ran through the small mound of possessions turned out in a heap before him. "There's enough electrical equipment here to make a small jamming device, I think. I could use it to disrupt the signals going on inside our friend the Leader - or one of his men - and make him... go off the rails as it were. That's always assuming that they work in the usual way. To be honest their workings interest me. I should love to meet the chap who designed them."

"They wish to destroy us, Doctor. I would not call that fascinating." Mykonicus watched the Time Lord begin to assemble his equipment. "Is there anything that I can do to help?"

"Don't happen to have a sonic screwdriver, do you? No?" The Doctor smiled at the baffled expression on his companion's face. "Well never mind. Keep a watch on the door could you?"

"Of course." The prince peered through the small window, looking both ways. "There's nobody in sight. Maybe they'll just leave us here."

"No they won't." Fiddling earnestly, the Doctor did not look up from his work as he spoke. "They'll come back here. They think that I know where the old records of your people are kept, and they want that knowledge."

"Do you know?"

The Doctor looked up at this question, and the pair stared at each other in silence for a brief moment. Finally the Time Lord smiled lightly.

"Yes," he said, without elaboration. "Right now, though, the less you know the better. If Marc wants to tell you, he will; when this is all over."

"When this is all over, I shall demand that our father open up the vaults to everybody; so that the whole planet can benefit."

"A long, slow job." The Doctor grinned. "But I actually quite envy you. Marc is a born teacher, and a natural for science."

"He would be. His mother was a genius." Mykonicus glanced towards the still form of his father and lowered his voice. "Once, when Marconius was still a baby, I saw her build toys for him, just from pieces of metal that she had saved from the wreck of her spaceship. Little people, who walked about on the table. I watched her a lot, when I thought that I could get away with it. Once I saw her build a box that she spoke to. The strangest thing is that it answered her."

"A communication device?" The Doctor frowned. "Then she contacted her own people whilst she was living here? Why not ask them to come for her? Why try to build her own ship to escape?"

"She tried to build her own ship?" Mykonicus whistled. "I always thought that she didn't really love my father. Perhaps you notice these things more as a child, but it did occur to me that she only cared for Marconius. She used to talk to him about their own planet."

"Araphen?" The Doctor tightened the last few connections, and Mykonicus nodded.

"That's it, yes. I heard her telling him that it was a planet of great science. She was proud of that. I remember being shocked that she would speak so openly of it in the palace; but she wouldn't have suspected that I was listening." He blushed. "I never meant to listen, at first. The alternative was tutoring with my brother, and I would rather listen to my step-mother speak of science than my tutor talking about the importance of always fighting technology, and keeping our planet in the dark ages. I think Sayda could have stopped the plagues and the famines on this planet in a few days, but she never seemed to care. I don't think that she liked it here."

"Araphen must be an impressive place. It must have been a big culture shock." Jumping to his feet, the Doctor collected his bits and pieces back together and returned them to his pockets. "I remember the first time that I went to a planet that was less advanced than my own. It was very strange."

"On Araphen she had everything done for her. I heard her telling Marc that nobody ever had to do any work there; that it was all done for them by metal men like the little toy ones that she built for him. It's no wonder that she was sad to leave that behind." He took the device from the Doctor and turned it over in his hands. "How does this work?"

"With a bit of luck you'll soon find out." The Doctor gave the device a quick shake, listening to it intently. "Any sign of our friends yet?"

"There's one of them at the end of the corridor." Mykonicus frowned, watching the tall metal figure as it patrolled about beyond their door. "I think he's coming this way."

"Excellent. Then we can find out if my little friend here works." The Doctor went quickly to the door and stood beside it, flattening himself against the wall. "Wait with your family, Myk. Keep quiet."

"Yes, of course." Hurrying across the room, the prince went to stand beside his sleeping father. Almost immediately the door began to open, and the Doctor tensed himself, his muscles alive with repressed tension. He saw Phylorus begin to awaken, and saw the frown on the king's face as he saw the approaching Android; and the hiding Time Lord. He opened his mouth to speak, but something in the Doctor's face warned him into silence.

"One more step..." The Doctor did not speak the words aloud, but he thought at first that he had, and his hearts nearly stopped. He clenched his teeth, thinking of the Android moving towards him. One more step and it would see him; and yet until it took that step it would not be within range. He had to be ready to act immediately.

"What's going on?" Waking up at the sound of the door being flung open, Phylos stared at the Doctor in surprise. "That is a scientific device!"

"Shut up, Phyl!" Mykonicus moved forward, but the sound of the Android's laser cannon whirring into life froze him in his tracks. He looked towards the Doctor, who was standing very still, his knuckles white around his device.

"You are concealing yourself, Doctor." The Android's voice was taut and sharp. "Step forward." The Time Lord did not move, and the Android made a curious growling sound. "Doctor..."

"He's not in here," Mykonicus offered, his voice less than confident. Phylos stepped forward, ignoring his brother's concern.

"The Doctor is beside the door," he said, his voice cold. "I will not stand by and watch him use scientific methods in this palace."

"Thankyou." The Android sounded oddly respectful. With a sudden, powerful movement it swung towards the Time Lord, reaching out with large, heavy hands. The first caught the Doctor by the left arm, the second by the right shoulder. "Enough, Doctor!"

"Phyl, how could you!" Mykonicus began to run forward, but the laser cannon mounted on the Android's shoulder moved, as if by its own volition, to point directly at him. The Doctor heard the sound of it powering up, and looked towards the prince.

"Stay back!" he shouted. "Don't do anything stupid!"

"Mykonicus!" Moving forward, Phylorus grabbed his son by the arm and dragged him back. Helpless, the prince watched as the Android slammed the Doctor against the wall, its burning red stare no more than a few inches from the Time Lord's own eyes.

"You thought to fight us, Doctor." The metal creature sounded as though it might be laughing. "You will learn that you cannot do this!"

"I don't think so." Raising his free arm, the Doctor gripped his device tightly in his hand. "Gotcha!"

"What-?" Turning its head, the Android stared down at the object in its prisoner's hand. It growled again, as the tip of the device began to glow.

"What is happening?" Its voice rose an octave, as smoke began to drift from its chest. "Something is wrong."

"Sorry old chap." The Doctor managed to get a grip on the Android's arm, and he clung on tightly. "This won't take long."

"Can't see..." The creature stumbled back a step, releasing the Doctor in a sudden desire to save itself. The Time Lord held on, keeping his device pressed against his former attacker's body. "No..." It swung its arms about, trying to shake the Time Lord off. "Overheating, overheating!"

"Doctor!" Mykonicus ran forward, seeing the laser cannon turn to point straight down at the Time Lord. The Doctor glanced up, hearing the distinctive whirr. His eyes widened momentarily, but he hung grimly on. The Android laughed a bitter, guttural laugh, the smoke from its chest now so thick and black that it stung the Doctor's eyes. Sparks flashed from its arm and leg joints.

"We die together, Doctor," it whispered, its voice now hoarse and scratchy. The Time Lord met its stare, seeing the brightness of its red eyes begin to fade.

"I'm sorry," he whispered to it, and the laser cannon fired. There was a flash of red and the weapon exploded, taking the Android's head with it.

"Doctor!" Mykonicus crouched beside the fallen Time Lord, who smiled breathlessly up at him.

"One or two adjustments could be made, but all in all not bad for a first attempt I think."

"You're mad." The prince helped him to his feet. "For a moment there I thought that wouldn't work."

"You're probably not the only one." Grinning, the Doctor brushed himself down, then glanced across at Phylorus and his eldest son. "We'd better be getting out of here." His tone was guarded and his manner polite and he clearly was not intending to mention that Phylos had so nearly got him killed.

"My father and I will not be going anywhere." Phylos squared his shoulders, his eyes filled with an imperious light. "Not only do you use science in the palace, but you build weapons as well. This cannot be tolerated."

"With all due respect, Your Highness, that was for your benefit as well as my own. We might just have a chance to get away now. And that wasn't a weapon." He looked from his jamming device to the destroyed Android, and sighed. "Although it might just as well have been."

"You don't feel sorry for it, Doctor?" Mykonicus stared down at the defeated creature. "It was going to kill you. It might well have killed half of the people on my planet."

"I know." The Time Lord smiled sadly. "I'm soft, Myk; always have been." He threw the jamming device into the air, watching it spin before he caught it again. "Come on. We have to be going if we're to find the others before they try something."

"We're not going anywhere." Phylos drew his sword, which was still in his belt. The Androids had not bothered to disarm their prisoners, since swords were no threat to them. "You will remain here. I shall speak to the Leader as soon as he comes here. You will tell him that you know where this scientific knowledge that he seeks is, and he will take it and leave us in peace."

"No he won't." The Doctor stared at the sword, wondering how serious Phylos was about using it. "That's not the way that these things work. They want slaves as well as science. Why else would they be trying to capture the whole planet? If it was just the science that they were after, they would have made me tell them about it by now."

"I don't believe you." Phylos raised his sword, pointing it at the Time Lord. "Why should I believe a scientist?"

"Because there's nobody in the entire universe who can help you save your planet without science." The Doctor stared into the prince's eyes, seeing fanaticism and true belief. It was all too clear that he was not going to convince this man in a hurry. "Never mind. You stay here, Your Highness. Enjoy yourself." He headed for the door. "I only hope that we can have this place liberated before the Androids decide that you are surplus to requirements."

"Father?" Mykonicus looked to the king, his expression questioning. "Are you with us?"

"I... I will stay with my son." Phylorus stared at the ground, refusing to meet the eyes of his middle child. Mykonicus hesitated for a moment, the anger clear in his eyes.

"Fine. Stay." He shook his head. "You never could make a decision yourself. You always let him make them for you."

"Come on, Myk." Standing by the door, the Doctor glanced out into the corridor. "I'll take you to where I assume that your brother is."

"I'm right with you." Mykonicus joined him, following him out of their little cell. "Will they be alright in there?"

"Probably." The Doctor closed the door again, sealing Phylorus and his son back in. "We have the rest of the planet to think about first. I'm sorry."

"Me too." He sighed. "Which way do we go?"

"Follow me." Setting off at a light jog, the Doctor chose the first turning that they came to, blissfully unaware that he was heading in completely the wrong direction. The palace was roughly circular in design; he was sure that they would find the right alcove in the end. In the meantime, he had some thinking to do.


"Doctor!" Suzy jumped to her feet, delighted to see the Time Lord as he emerged from the passageway. "Where have you been?"

"Oh, here and there." He smiled at her, walking straight over to where Marc and Eron were toiling away, a book open on the floor between them. "Can I assist you with something?"

"Only if you know anything about electromagnetic pulses." Eron scowled at the book. "I can't make head or tail out of any of this."

"It's sick." Marc gestured at the thick volume, tastefully bound in some long-lasting leather substitute. "An entire book, detailing how to build weaponry. You would not believe, Doctor, how industriously my forebears worked to invent ways of destroying each other." He sighed, looking up suddenly. "Mykonicus!"

"Brother." Myk sat down beside the younger prince. "Electro - electro - What?"

"Electromagnetic pulses." Marc shrugged. "We found a design for a weapon which uses them, but it's all rather confusing. We were rather hoping that we could use it against the Androids." He smiled suddenly. "Should I be telling you this?"

"I'm on your side, Marc. It may cause one or two problems with our dear brother, but I can see no other way to defeat our enemy. He hugged his knees, staring up at the Doctor. "Do you have any suggestions?"

"None whatsoever." Smiling without concern, the Time Lord sat down in the nearest chair, unfazed by the unexplained presence of numerous guardsmen armed with what looked suspiciously like laser cannons and handguns. There appeared to be some large grenades on the table nearby as well. "I would suggest that the Androids are well protected against your average hardware though. Their creators are remarkable craftsmen."

"I'm glad that you approve." Eron shrugged. "So what do you think we should do? Take them all on separately, and hope that we're stronger than they are? That's no way to free the planet."

"The Doctor has a device. It worked on one of the Androids in the palace." Mykonicus nodded to the distinctly home-made looking object in the Time Lord's hands. "Perhaps we could construct a larger one, or build many, so that we can all arm ourselves?"

"We can't rely on something that requires hand to hand combat." Eron shook his head. "I would rather try to find something that would deal with them all at once."

"Some kind of bomb?" Marc glanced up. "The Androids are often mentioned in the computer records. There might be something in there that could help us."

"I doubt it." The Doctor picked up the book detailing the electromagnetic weapon that the Phelonians had been attempting to build. He flicked through a few pages, amazed at the detail noted down by the book's long-dead author. DIY nuclear war, all laid out in clear text, complete with diagrams. It was really no wonder that the scientific might of Phelon had collapsed so completely. "This place was sealed during the massacres; before the Androids came here. Any additions would have been made by those few Phelonians who were aware of the existence of this place; none of which were true scientists. They wouldn't have had the knowledge to make detailed observations."

"That's true." Eron toyed with the welding torch in his hand. "The Brotherhood of Phelon was set up to guard our scientific knowledge. We weren't allowed to read it, for fear that we could give ourselves away inadvertently. I've spent many weeks in this place, but I've never really read the books until today."

"That's crazy," Marc objected with surprise. "There are all kinds of detailed comments about the Androids in the computers; information about their abilities, their specifications..."

"Interesting..." The Doctor's eyes strayed to the half-finished space ship lying nearby. "Somebody with a very impressive scientific background must have written those details; somebody with access to this place and a familiarity with the Androids themselves."

"There is nobody like that here on Phelon." Mykonicus looked up at him, a frown crinkling his forehead. "The only person with any knowledge of science was..." His voice trailed off as he looked at Marc. Eron, standing some distance away, looked distinctly uncomfortable.

"My mother." Marc stared at his brother. "That's what you were going to say, isn't it. You think that my mother might be connected with these things somehow?"

"I didn't say that." Myk stared at the ground. "I was just thinking aloud."

"Perhaps we can go one step further than that." The Doctor looked straight at Eron. "Do you have something to tell us?"

"Me?" The guard looked shocked, his eyes momentarily furtive before he regained his composure. "What do I know?"

"Sayda came from a planet where robots did all of the manual work. She had remarkable electrical skills and a thorough knowledge of cybernetic science. She also hated this planet but waived her one chance of leaving it." He looked across at Mykonicus. "She was seen contacting her people, but they never came for her."

"Just what are you suggesting?" His voice filled with the fires of conflict, Marconius stepped towards the Time Lord. "Are you trying to imply that my mother might have in some way been connected with a race of Androids who once ransacked my planet? Who massacred millions of my people? I don't have to listen to this."

"Eron?" The Doctor stared straight at the guard, who was now looking extremely uncomfortable. "Don't you think that we need to know everything? Everything? If we are going to defeat these creatures, we need to know what we're dealing with."

"You don't understand, Doctor..." His voice was quiet and subdued, and Marc whirled to face him.

"What, Eron? What don't we understand? That you hated my mother? Do you think that I don't know that? Do you think that I didn't notice the looks you gave her when her back was turned? Did you think that a child wouldn't understand?"

"Your Highness..."

"The truth, Eron." The Doctor's voice was clipped and firm, his eyes bright and questing. "I do understand. These records mean everything to you. Protecting them, and trying to have science reinstated on this planet, are the two things that you have wanted your whole life; aren't they? And Marconius, with his scientific mother, and his knowledge of all things technical, was your great hope. Your one chance of getting the population to listen to you; wasn't he? He has science, but he's not evil. His mother had science, but the king loved her, and she never did anybody any wrong." He shook his head. "I'm sorry, Eron. There are more important things at stake now. If these creatures get their hands on these books, they'll be unstoppable. Today they want Phelon. Tomorrow they could be after the universe."

"What is he talking about, Eron?" Marc began to advance on the guard, his eyes wide and angry. "Tell me."

"I--" Eron's shoulders slumped. "I'm sorry. The Androids... come from the planet of Araphen. Your mother was one of a group of scouts sent to scan Phelon, to check it for future invasion plans. The ship crashed, and... you know the rest. Various members of the Brotherhood reported on her discovery of this place. She had already built a communication device, and for all we knew she could have been about to transmit the location of the vault to her home planet. And yet she didn't. We were prepared to kill her, and yet all that she did was to spend time here; write reports, plan assaults. She was... ambitious. She was keeping her knowledge to herself, so that she could gain the full credit for the discovery."

"You're lying." Marconius drew his sword. "My mother would not have been a part of any of this."

"She hated this planet." Eron looked away. "She hated everything about Phelon. She believed us all to be backward and contemptible. She drew up plans for an invasion, so that she could take the whole planet. That's why she filled the computer with information about the Androids." He sighed, shaking his head. "Then one day we discovered that she was planning to return to Araphen. She was building a spaceship, and was going to make her final report."

"So you did the only thing that you believed you could do," prompted the Doctor. Eron glared at him, his eyes filled with pain.

"I followed her, when she took her evening walk along the cliff path. It was... easy, to push her. Then all that I needed to do was to get back into the palace unseen. His shoulders shook slightly. "Your Highness, I--"

"You traitor." With a sudden burst of rage, Marc raised his sword above his head, leaping forward. "I'm going to--"

"Marc!" Moving with a speed he had never known himself to be capable of, Mykonicus acted, grabbing his brother by the sword arm and spinning him about. He held tightly on, seeing the emotions rush through his younger brother's eyes. "I saw it, Marc. I saw your mother making robots. I saw her speaking into her talking device. She hated this world!"

"So do I, damn it! All my life I've longed to leave here. Does that make me in league with the Androids? These creatures were created for war! They live to conquer and destroy, and you think that my mother could be a part of that?" He tried to pull free, but couldn't. "Myk... My whole life, my whole everything! I - I turned to science because it was my mother's work. I believed that science couldn't be evil because she wasn't. Now what am I supposed to believe? What am I supposed to think?"

"I don't know." Mykonicus gently took the sword from his brother's hand. "Just because Sayda may not have been the woman that you thought she was doesn't mean that you were wrong about science as well. You're not evil."

"Am I not?" Marc stared back at his older brother. "Her genes are in me, brother. Her blood is in my veins. What she was, I am too. What she came from, is a part of me." He tugged suddenly free, turning around. "Who's to say, now, that our father wasn't right all along? These books, that are all about making weapons to kill things; they're evil. My mother was a scientist, and now you - all of you - you say that she was evil. Well now who's to say that I'm not?" He laughed bitterly. "I can't say it, and if anybody knows I should." His eyes sought out the Doctor's. "Are you going to tell me, Doctor? Because you're a scientist too, aren't you, so I don't even know which side you're on."

"Marc, don't be a fool. You can't change your mind about everything you've believed in all of your life, just because you may have to face up to a different truth." The Doctor stepped towards him, holding the other man's gaze. "I'm sorry we had to say all of these things, Marc. I had to hear them from Eron. We had to know."

"Did we really." The young prince shook his head. "I didn't have to hear it, Doctor." He spun on his heel and headed away down the passage. "Talk about your science. I have some thinking to do."

"Don't be a fool. You can't go out there!" The Doctor ran forward, but Marc grabbed a handgun from the table and pointed it at him.

"Don't follow me, Doctor. I'm liable to act a little rashly." He backed into the passage. "You make your plans, and build your weapons. Leave me out of it." He was gone.

"Blast!" Slamming his fist into the tabletop, the Doctor glared down the passageway after the prince. Eron laughed shortly, without humour.

"Well done, Doctor. After all these years, you manage to blow everything wide open, just as we were getting somewhere. We needed him!"

"For your hopes, yes." The Doctor shook his head. "You're as bad as they are, Eron. They try to hide from science, and risk their planet in the process; whereas you are so determined to reinstate science that you risk everything to ensure that the truth about Queen Sayda never came out. Don't you see how this information is vital to us? Now something tells me that there are one or two other things that she left around here."

"There are, yes." Eron lowered his head. "Doctor, I--"

"Never mind. What is there? Information? Weaponry?"

"What we could salvage from the spaceship that she crashed here. Some weapons, yes; also some wreckage that we think was once an Android. We hid it to save it from destruction at the hands of our less tolerant brothers, but we ended up hiding it for a different reason." He sighed. "The people of this planet grew to love Queen Sayda. She was beautiful, and she gave them a prince who was so different to the rest of us. Half of the people in Phelonia, and probably in Orphelia as well, are in love with Marconius. They would have turned back to science eventually, if we could have persuaded them that Marc and his mother were behind it. Now for them to discover that Sayda was evil, and hated them... We will never lift the ban on technology now."

"There are other ways." The Doctor looked towards Suzy. "Stay here, Suzy. Help them if you can. I'm going after Marc."

"But there are Androids out there!" She stepped towards him, but he smiled firmly at her.

"I shall be fine, and so will Marc if I have anything to say about it. Eron, I'm leaving this in your hands. You and your people have to do what you can with the equipment that you have. If you can get to it, there's a dead Android in the palace that may also be of some use to you. You have everything that you need here."

"We'll try to finish building the weapon, and some transportation." Eron nodded. "We won't let you down, Doctor."

"I will help too." Mykonicus looked about at all of the equipment. "If I can."

"Good man." The Doctor headed away down the passage.

"Wait!" Eron ran after him, holding out a handgun. "You'd better take this, Doctor. We have enough. You'll need it."

The Doctor took the weapon, weighing it in his hand, then grinned.

"Thankyou Eron, but you'd best keep this. I should probably only shoot myself with it."

"But--" Eron took the proffered gun automatically. "Doctor, I--"

"I find weapons distasteful Eron. I shall find my own way." He turned about, raising a hand in silent farewell. Eron stared after him.

"He's mad," he muttered. Suzy wandered over to stand beside him, gazing after the Time Lord.

"No he's not," she said loyally, her eyes smiling brightly. "He's wonderful."


Marconius Dransus walked slowly along the beach, heading away from the palace. His head hurt and his mind whirled unsteadily. He was unsure just why he had reacted so violently in the cavern. It was rather as though all that he had ever believed in had been torn away; and yet it had not been as much of a surprise to him as his outburst had suggested. He had known about his mother's hatred for Phelon, and he had realised a long time previously that her original mission had been invasion. There was no other explanation for the equipment that she was known to have had with her when she had been found. His father had managed to avoid the truth only through ignorance.

"You're a fool, Marc." He whispered the words to himself, missing the warmth and the comradeship of the cavern, but unable to think about returning to it. The knowledge that Eron had been responsible for Sayda's death held him back more than anything else that had just transpired. He had hated the guard; then felt friendship towards him when they had discovered their similar goals. Now he found that the guard had murdered Sayda. Nothing could change the way that Marc now felt about him; despite the realisation that, in all honesty, Eron had had little choice.

"Araphen." He stood halfway down the cliff path, staring up at the blue sky, wondering where the planet was; how far away it might be, and what it was like there. He imagined machines and computers everywhere, and robots patrolling the streets. There would be slaves there as well of course; taken from the other planets defeated by the war-like Androids in the name of their organic masters.

"You have come." The voice was soft and respectful and he turned towards it in surprise, seeing a towering figure behind him. His hand tightened on his gun before he recognised that there was no belligerence in the creature's stance. It appeared to be awaiting orders.

"I beg your pardon?" he asked, ready to shoot it if necessary. The Android tilted its head to look at him, apparently puzzled.

"You are from Araphen." Its eyes were glowing in a rhythm that matched the pattern of its speech. "Biological scan reveals--"

"Yes, of course." He frowned up at the creature. "I'm from Araphen. What do you want?"

"You have come to take command of the mission?" It moved towards him, its hands by its sides. He smiled.

"You are all ready to take my orders?"

"Of course." It bowed its head respectfully. "I shall escort you to the palace."

"That would be excellent." Marc stiffened his shoulders, trying to appear ready for command. "I shall follow you."

"As you wish." It turned away, then stopped abruptly, the laser cannon on its shoulder whirring loudly. "We are watched."

"Watched?" Marc moved forward, catching a glimpse of sunlight shining on boots decorated with silver. "It's okay, that's just--"

"Move aside. I shall destroy this person." The Android moved forward, but Marc stopped it.

"No, wait. You can't kill him. He'll be useful."

"He will?" The creature obediently was still. "Very well." It appeared to be considering something. "I shall apprehend, but not destroy." The laser cannon whirred again.

"Hey!" Marc tried to push past the Android, but found it too strong. The cannon hummed to itself, and then fired.

The blast sounded ridiculously loud at such close quarters. Marc saw a section of the cliff path above him disintegrate into dust, and saw a sudden flash of ignited grass and rock. Smoke ballooned into the air, engulfing him for a brief second; then all was still. He ran forward, concerned, and found the Doctor lying on the ground. The Time Lord rolled over, clearly dazed, his clothes dusty and marked from the smoke.

"Marc?" He blinked, rubbing his eyes, then looked up as the shadow of the Android fell across him. His eyes widened. "Look out!"

"It's alright, Doctor." Marc looked up at the Android. "He is not to be harmed."

"He shall not be destroyed." The Android bent, dragging the Doctor to his feet with little care. "What are your next orders?"

"We shall return to the palace." Marc watched as his new servant pushed the Doctor ahead of them back towards the path which led to the palace. The Time Lord's bright eyes stared accusingly at him for a moment, and he felt a brief burst of guilt.

"I want to speak to whoever is in charge of your mission," he said, trying not to think too much about what he was about to do. "I have something to suggest to him, involving this man. A deal."

"A... deal?" The Android did not question him, but merely pushed the prisoner again, sending him stumbling several paces forward. The Doctor's feet skidded on the loose ground, and he got an unpleasantly close view of the hair-raising drop into the chasm below, where the waves beat against the rocks.

"Be careful!" Marc tried to move past the Android, but the path was too narrow. He resigned himself to taking a back seat for now, and tried to shut out his memory of the betrayed look in the Time Lord's eyes. It was for the best, he told himself, trying to believe it himself. What he was about to do would save Phelon. He only hoped that it would not be at too great a cost to the Doctor.


"My lord." Bowing low before Marc, the Leader raised its laser cannon in a form of salute, its eyes wandering towards the Doctor. Now fully recovered from the explosion on the cliff path, the Time Lord was taking stock of his surroundings, and trying to formulate some theories. He did not like the conclusions that were rapidly crystallising in his mind.

"Leader." Marc nodded a greeting. "I wish to discuss something with you."

"Discuss." The Leader waved a hand, a movement that did not disguise the whirring in its laser cannon, which had turned to point at the captive Time Lord. "Of what do you wish to speak?"

"Phelon." Marc folded his arms. "This planet is of no use to us. I believe that we should leave it. The people here cannot help us."

"Leave? Without slaves or the scientific knowledge that we seek?" The Leader cocked its head on one side, eyes flashing. "Why would we do this?"

"Because to stay here any longer would be futile." Marc stared back at the creature, holding its gaze. "For slaves..." He hesitated, imaging what the Doctor would think of him, to hear him say it. "For slaves you may take everybody within the palace walls. As for the scientific knowledge, we must accept that it has gone forever."

"Then we shall tear apart this planet until we are sure." The Leader took a step towards him. "These are our orders."

"I know." Marc stared back at it, determined not to give any ground. "But I believe that I can offer you a reasonable alternative."

"Such as?"

"Him." Marc pointed at the Doctor, who stared back at him, eyes widening in disbelief. "He has a ship that can only be of remarkable design. He spoke of things... And another that I have spoken to - one who knows him - told me that he has the ability to travel in Time. The people of this planet were never that advanced."

"True." The Leader eyed the Doctor, a curious clicking sound indicating that it was thinking. "Very well. We shall do as you suggest. You shall lead us back to Araphen. Phelon shall be left to rot in its own stupidity." It made a sound much like laughter. "And King Phylorus and his son shall be amongst the slaves that we take back with us. That is most fitting."

"King Phylorus?" Marc had almost forgotten his father, but the deal was done now, and he realised that he could not go back on it. Part of him did not want to. Whilst he did not exactly hate his father, the man's weakness had angered him many times; and there was certainly no love lost between the king's youngest son and his eldest. Marc would almost enjoy seeing Phylos taken to Araphen. Even so, guilt burned strongly within him.

"Marc?" The Doctor took a step towards him, his face showing puzzlement. "What are you doing?"

"Silence, Doctor." The Leader moved to intercept him, metal hand firmly gripping the prisoner by the arms. "You will do as you are ordered."

"Marc!" The Doctor struggled, oblivious to the growing anger in the Android's movements. "Think about what you are doing man! This is no time to have a personality crisis!"

"Be silent, Doctor." One hand snapped up, solid and unyielding, catching the Time Lord a hard blow on the side of the head and knocking him off his feet. Marc's eyes widened in shock, then he forced himself to hide his emotions. He had to be strong if he was to lead the Androids away from Phelon. He tried not to look at the Doctor, as he struggled back to his feet, blood trickling slowly down the side of his head. The Time Lord stared straight at him, eyes burning.

"We will adjourn to the ship." The Leader looked towards the Doctor. "His ship. Immediately."

"Leader." The other Androids present saluted smartly and marched away. Marc looked after them, wondering what exactly his next move should be. For the first time in his life he wondered about the others in the palace; how many of them there were; where they had all come from. He was condemning them to a life of slavery on an alien planet. He told himself that it was for the good of Phelon, but still the thoughts were jumbled in his mind. All that he was clearly aware of was the Doctor, being manhandled from the room. Good intentions and plans mingled with dark thoughts in Marc's head, and quite suddenly all that he wanted was for the world to be as before. The problems of his life as it had been seemed tiny now.


"Where are they going?" Mykonicus watched the parade with his new comrades, hands held up to shield his eyes from the sun. "There are hundreds of them."

"The palace staff." Eron shook his head. "I don't know. Maybe they're moving to new headquarters?"

"Doubtful." One of his men, a burly fellow named Regon stared straight at the lead Android. "They're moving out. Why would they abandon the palace?"

"We discovered them in the forest." Suzy remembered her first sight of one of the huge creatures, amongst the trees near to the TARDIS. "They must be going back there, to wherever they left their ships."

"And the Phelonians going with them are slaves." Eron frowned, not wanting to mention that it did not look as though Marc was a prisoner. "The Doctor is with them... and I can see the king, and Phylos."

"My father is there?" Mykonicus moved as if to go closer, but Eron held him back.

"They'll kill you," he said firmly. "We go back to the caverns, and work on the weaponry."

"But what good is that if they're going back to Araphen?" Regon held up his gun. "I say we go after them now. We have to stop them before they leave the planet. They have our king." He shook his head. "He may be a stubborn and backward-looking fool, but we can't let them take him away."

"If we try to stop them they'll only kill us. We can't make a move yet, when there are so few of us." Eron began to lead them back down the path. "Come on. We have to get inside before one of them sees us."

"I suppose you're right." Mykonicus took a last look up at the procession of prisoners and Androids, then followed the head of the guard. Suzy trailed behind as they all went back into the hidden caverns, and she frowned at the rest of the group.

"Are you sure we're doing the right thing?" she asked. Eron nodded, without speaking, and she glared at his back.

"I don't."

"You're outvoted," he told her, and returned to the piles of equipment which were rapidly taking on a new shape in the centre of the floor. She sighed.

"Fine." Beginning to pace, unwilling to assist due to an inability to keep her mind focussed, her eyes strayed to the grenades on the table nearby. Shock grenades, she had heard them being called. She looked back towards the others; Eron bent over the equipment, Regon and the others assisting him where they could, all of them bent over the books spread before them on the ground. None of them were looking at her. She smiled to herself, and collected as many of the grenades as she could hold; then she slipped out of the cavern and hurried up the cliff path, heading after the Doctor and his escort. She had no idea exactly what she was going to do, but she knew that she had to try something; otherwise she might never see the Time Lord again.


The Doctor ignored the Androids and shut out the marching Phelonians, his mind wandering over numerous topics; none of them of any use to him in his current situation. His predicament was clear; the Androids were intending to make him take the TARDIS to Araphen, so that it could be studied, and so that the power hungry natives could use the new knowledge for greater supremacy. Given his previous record of course, he was more concerned about the chances of his actually making it to Araphen. It would be a somewhat ignominious end, to be executed for taking the party to Brighton, 1942, instead of to their intended destination.

The explosion was so loud that for several milliseconds the Doctor thought that one of the Androids had fired its laser cannon, and he swung around, searching out the victim in preparation to run to the assistance of the unfortunate soul. Instead he saw only smoke, and the rising clouds of dust that told him it had been more than just a laser blast firing close by. The three Androids bringing up the rear of the party were staggering, and the Phelonians closest to them scattered, running in a panic to get away from the noise and the commotion. The Time Lord felt sorry for them; they knew nothing of explosions, and could not be expected to keep calm in the face of such a commotion.

"Keep still!" he shouted, dodging the heavy hand moving to restrain him. A second explosion rocked the ground almost immediately, and the terrified locals veered away again, leaving the three trailing Androids to be blown apart. In a shower of sparks they collapsed, and the braver among their prisoners halted their mad dash and stared back towards the main body of the group.

"Free the king!" Clearly inspired by this sudden and unexplained attack on their enemies, one of the men raised his fist into the air, shouting to his fellow palace servants. The shout echoed about him, and the Doctor heard the laser cannon of the closest Android whirr into readiness.

"No!" Moving forward before the Time Lord could do anything, Phylos held his arms up above his head. "We are attacked by enemies not friends. They have science! We cannot work with them." The approaching group slowed, disturbed by this announcement, and the Doctor saw the Leader's cannon take aim. The Phelonians made clear targets, stilled by indecision, and Phylos was only confusing them more.

"Surrender!" he shouted, his haughty tone filled with the certainty lent to him by his conviction in the evils of science.

"Fool." Moving past the Leader the Doctor swung his fist, catching Phylos with a powerful right cross that sent the prince tumbling over backwards, where he collapsed into a stunned heap. The Leader raised an arm to strike at the Doctor, but the Time Lord was too quick.

"If you're the man that I think you are, Marc," he began, not bothering to finish the sentence. Shocked, Marc looked from the Leader to the Doctor to the unconscious Phylos; then he ran forward.

"Attack the Androids!" he shouted, using all of the strength in his lungs to project his voice as far as it would go. "Attack them - for Phelon!"

"Attack!" The shout reverberated about the flat, open area; and in the same instant a third explosion rocked the ground. Earth and other debris showered the Doctor and the Leader as the former dodged the latter, trying to avoid the heavy metal fists ready to descend on his head. The laser cannon whirred ominously above him.

"You will pay for this, Doctor," the Leader told him. Nearby one of the Androids fired, and the blast sent several of the onrushing Phelonians tumbling across the ground. Still they came, the laser shots now ringing loud through the air, another explosion adding to the confusion, until they were within reach. They attacked on mass, dragging the Androids to the ground by sheer force of numbers, their many hands tearing at the great metal creatures, incapacitating them.

"No!" Swinging around, ignoring the Doctor, the Leader took aim at the nearest group, his red eyes glowing fiercely. The Time Lord threw himself at the creature, lost segments of past characteristics screaming at him for his stupidity. He felt the Android waver slightly, but his assault did not seem to affect it at all. It threw him off easily, and he rolled across the ground, coming to rest beside the still unconscious Phylos. His hand connected with something hard and made of metal.

"Thanks be to Rassilon." He drew the sword quickly, just as the whirring of the Leader's laser cannon reached a crescendo, and hurled himself at the creature's back. The sword, with all of a Time Lord's strength behind it, jammed home into the cannon structure, sticking hard and sending sparks flying. The Leader growled, the rumbles becoming a loud and powerful roar which echoed in the Doctor's ears.

"Fool!" It batted him aside with ease, this time sending him flying. He tried to stagger to his feet, just as the Leader fired. Blocked off as it was, the cannon on its shoulder emitted a last, desperate squeal, then exploded in a deafening blast. The Android's head and shoulders were atomised, and sparks flew high into the air. Abruptly all was silent.

"Doctor." Startled back into action Marc ran forward, assisting the Time Lord. Somewhat dazed, the Doctor leaned on him for several seconds, then nodded his thanks and pulled away.

"Doctor, listen I - I'm sorry. I--"

"Yes, yes." Dismissing the thought with a gesture, the Doctor looked about. His keen eyes were searching for the source of the recent explosions, and he soon picked out Suzy walking towards them. Several Phelonians backed away from her, clearly afraid of whoever might have been responsible for the thunderous noises and violent blasts which had destroyed their enemies so easily.

"Suzy!" He ran towards her and met her halfway, catching her by the shoulders. "Are you alright?"

"Of course." She stepped back, brushing some of the grime from her hands, and looked up at him. "I think it should be me asking you that. You look a real mess."

"Yes, I do seem to be a tad dusty." He smiled. "Suzy, when I tell you to stay somewhere..."

"Yes, I know. Stay there." She grinned. "Aren't you glad to see me?"

"More than you'll ever know." He laughed, and glanced towards the few remaining grenades clipped to her belt. "Er... can I make just one suggestion?"


"These." He took them, twisting the switch on the top of each. "You had the safety off. Left like that they would have exploded if you sneezed."

"What?!" She stepped back, gazing at the grenades with wide, frightened eyes; then her shoulders gradually relaxed. "Oh well... I'll know better next time."

"There won't be a next time." He turned back to Marc and the others. "I hope."


"It was good of you to stay, Doctor." Mykonicus, his clothes now replaced with a richly embroidered tunic and cloak, entered the throne room looking a very different man. They had become used to his dusty, fugitive look, and it seemed strange to see both him and Marc now dressed so differently. It was the first time that they had seen the youngest prince looking even remotely royal.

"Not at all. I wanted to be sure that you could free Orphelia before I left." The Doctor smiled from one prince to the other. "And?"

"And Eron has just reported back. There were as few Androids there as there were here. It was a token presence, nothing more. With our ship, and our weapons, we were soon able to destroy them." Marc grinned. "They weren't expecting something like that from us."

"You won't catch them by surprise again," the Doctor told him.

"I know." Marc shrugged. "But we're hoping that by the time they try to come this way again, we'll be a little better prepared." His eyebrows raised comically. "Have you heard the news?"

"You mean the abdication of the king?" Suzy grinned. "I suppose we should feel sorry for him, but..."

"But nothing. I love my father, but he has no right to rule this kingdom if he can't even stand up to his own son." Marc shrugged. "And with Phylos removed from the succession, that makes Myk the new ruler."

"I shall have to find Phyl something to do where he can't cause trouble." Mykonicus did not look thrilled by this responsibility. "What about you, Doctor? Can I encourage you to stay awhile?"

"I'm afraid not. I have... other plans." The Time Lord smiled. "And speaking of which, I have a little parting surprise for you." He nodded towards the door, and both princes turned as one to look towards it. It swung open slowly and two large, metal figures came slowly into the room.

"Androids!" Mykonicus reached for the gun which had replaced the sword on his belt. The Doctor caught his wrist.

"Not so fast." He stepped forward, nodding a greeting to the larger Android. "Leader."

"Doctor." The Android inclined its head in greeting. "How can I assist you?"

"Oh there's nothing I want." Indicating Mykonicus, the Time Lord smiled in triumph. "But this is Mykonicus, your new commander. You're to do as he says from now on."

"As you wish." The Android bowed before the young prince. "I am reporting for duty."

"You reprogrammed them!" Marc shook his head, amazed. "Doctor, I do wish that you would stay. There's so much that you could teach us."

"You'll learn. All of you." The Doctor smiled fondly at him. "And I'm glad that you've decided to stay here."

"I can leave now, if I want to." The young prince grinned. "But for the first time in my life I don't want to go. I'm the only person who knows enough about science to begin the re-education of my people. It's going to be a long job."

"But a rewarding one, I think." The Doctor smiled. "There are six Androids in total, Marc. The others needed some greater renovation work, but Eron was kind enough to send me some bits and pieces. They left a few hours ago."


"For Araphen." There was a mischievous glitter in the Time Lord's eyes. "As soon as they land they'll begin sabotaging equipment and reprogramming the other Androids. I think Araphen might think twice about invading Phelon again in future."

"Thankyou." Mykonicus smiled warmly. "There must be something that we can do for you in return."

"There is." The Doctor nodded towards the gun in the new king's belt. "Get rid of that, Myk. There's no need to walk around armed on your own planet. Just because you are abandoning your planet's opposition to science is no reason to also abandon its dedication to peace. The greater our scientific abilities become, the greater is the importance of following the peaceful paths. Otherwise we will very soon all destroy each other."

"You're a wise man, Doctor." Mykonicus drew the weapon and put it aside. "I... shall do my best to lead my people in a way that will make you proud, as well as Marc and I."

"Good." Nodding his head the Doctor clapped his hands together. "And now we must be off."

"Can we walk you to your ship?" Marc asked. The Time Lord shook his head.

"No thankyou. You have a lot to do here." Shaking both their hands, the Doctor turned to Suzy. "Come along, Suzy. We have a long walk ahead of us."

"Are you sure you can find the way?" she asked him. He glared at her.

"I think I liked you best when you weren't talking to me."

"That was a lifetime ago." She waved farewell to the two princes and went to the door. The pair raised their hands in reply to her wave; first and fourth fingers extended, thumbs and two middle fingers clenched. The sight of the salute brought a smile to the face of the Doctor, but he did not comment on it until the palace was far behind them.

"Do you think they'll be alright Doctor?" They reached the TARDIS as the light began to fade, and Suzy glanced back through the trees towards the palace. The Time Lord smiled down at her.

"Did you see their wave?"

"Yes. It's the salute of Phelon. Myk showed it to me a while ago. Why?"

"Because it's also the universal sign for Enlightenment." He opened the TARDIS doors and waved her inside. "It'll take some time, but they'll be just fine."

"I'd like to come back here one day and find out."

"Unlikely." He began to set the co-ordinates for their next flight. "I am taking you back to Liverpool, after all. As promised."

"Yes... about that." She hesitated. "Doctor..."

"What?" Starting them on their journey with the tap of a button, the Doctor folded his arms and leant against the console to look at her. She blushed.

"Well I was sort of thinking... if you don't mind that is... Well I thought that I might rather like to stay with you. For a bit."

"For a bit?" He raised his eyebrows, and she grinned.

"Well maybe a little longer. I - I've decided that I quite like it here."

"You do?" He sounded surprised, and she laughed.

"Is that really so crazy? I mean, it's been fun. I'd like to see a little more of the universe. If you wouldn't mind showing it to me."

"I would like that a lot." He smiled warmly at her, turning back to watch the central column rise and fall. "There is a lot of it to see."

"Good." She folded her arms, looking up at him with total confidence. "Where shall we go first?"

"Oh, I don't know." He shrugged. "How about... Rendus? They make this soufflé there that would make your hair stand on end."

"Sounds good." She watched as he adjusted the settings. "Er... Don't get me wrong, Doctor; but what exactly are our chances of actually arriving there?"

"Oh, I don't know." He grinned cheerfully. "But wherever we do end up, it certainly won't be dull. And that, Suzy, is the most that I can promise anyone."