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Energy Drain

By Wendy Toynton

The air rippled with the smell of decay, like a room left unaired for months. The visual impact of the room was equally unpleasant. The surrounding walls were completely grey, totally devoid of any colour. Weapons of all varieties littered the floor, providing relief from the monotonous grey decor. These weapons, if they were capable of hearing, would have been amazed at the spectacle they were about to witness.

For the first time in years, sound could be heard in the stone complex. A sort of wheezing, groaning sound as a small, blue box-shaped object crept into existence. This noise was followed immediately by the squeaking of the objects' opening door.

A man with curly hair stepped out. In his black and yellowed striped trousers and vividly coloured jacket, he had a strong resemblance to a circus clown. His companion, Peri, was a pretty girl with short black hair.

‘Ooh, what a smell,’ she exclaimed, covering her nose with her hand.

‘Someone has appalling colour taste. This place is terribly dreary.’

‘Doctor, what's causing this horrible smell?’

Peri's question received no reply. The Doctor was busy examining the weapons scattered across the floor.

Walking over to see what he was doing, Peri accidentally sent one of the numerous dust piles flying, causing a horrible mess.

‘Empty. Whatever they were firing at was obviously immune to most forms of energy discharge,’ muttered the Doctor absent-mindedly.

‘Doctor, what are you talking about now?’

‘See that dust you've got all over you.’ The Doctor gestured towards Peri. ‘That's the last bodily remains of whoever owned these weapons. Something drained them of their bio energy.’

‘This dust... Doctor, that's horrible. What could cause something like this?’ Peri carefully dusted herself down. She didn't fancy having someone's remains all over her clothing.

‘I don't know. C'mon, perhaps we'll find it outside,’ said the Doctor enthusiastically.

‘I don't really think that I want to find it, Doctor,’ Peri shuddered.

‘You're right. Stay here, Peri, I'll be back in a minute.’ Without giving any Peri any time to protest, the Doctor hurried out of the room.

The corridors outside were in no better state of repair than the room the Doctor had just left Peri in. There were no signs of life, intelligent or otherwise, anywhere.

Peri was sitting on a small stone ledge, patiently waiting for the Doctor to return. She was staring at the wall in front of her nervously, expecting something horrible to happen. Since she had joined the Doctor Peri had learned to expect the worst because, if you're with the Doctor, it usually happens. Even though she was expecting the worst, Peri was still very scared. She had a very bad feeling about this place.

‘It's so like a morgue...’ she thought to herself. Behind her a small green glowing spot had appeared in the wall and was growing steadily larger...

The Doctor, meanwhile, had given up. On his trek through the entire building he had found only a single trace of the energy being. Bored, he decided to return to Peri and the TARDIS.

He walked into the room only to be greeted by the sight of Peri being backed into a corner by a large fluorescent green blob.

‘Peri, don't move, it's sensitive to the burn of energy.’

A lot of good it did telling Peri not to move. The Doctor didn't have the faintest idea of how to rescue her from the energy being. Desperately he looked around for a weapon to use. There was nothing but grey stones and dust. The Doctor's eyes widened.

‘Of course, Silica Trineurate.’ Both hearts racing, he began picking up large chunks of stone and throwing them at the energy being.

With its attention now focused on the Doctor, Peri slipped out of her corner towards the TARDIS.

‘Doctor, come on.’ Peri turned and looked at the energy being in amazement.

It was about the size of a football and bright pink.

‘Poor thing seems to have a slight case of indigestion,’ said the Doctor.

‘What did you do to it?’ Peri asked.

‘Those stones I was throwing at it are Silica Trineurate. The creature drains energy, so do the stones. They sort of counteracted each other.’

The Doctor grinned as he escorted Peri back to the TARDIS. She didn't. She was hoping they would go somewhere peaceful for a change. Kew Gardens perhaps...

This item appeared in TSV 10 (December 1988).

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