24 Aug 2014

Before the Dawn (Part 4)

It was getting dark and Molly had gone to bed. Now Tylaya found herself sat in an uncomfortable silence with Sam and Chloe. They had found a tin of sweet corn, heated it up in the back garden on a small fire they had constructed and were now finishing off the last of it.

Tylaya looked at Sam and Chloe. She could tell they had been waiting a long time to be together without being surrounded by anyone else for quite some time.

“Well,” she said, “I think I might hit the hay too.”

“Goodnight,” said Sam.

“Thank you,” said Chloe.

Tylaya smiled at them and made her way upstairs. She passed the front bedroom and noticed Molly was awake and looking at her.

“Shouldn’t you be asleep?” said Tylaya.

“I can’t sleep,” said Molly.

“I know,” said Tylaya, crossing to the tatty curtains and glancing outside down the darkened street.

“It’s not the Daleks,” said Molly. “They don’t frighten me. They’re just as scared as the Humans. It’s just they’re the ones with the bigger weapons and the bad attitude.”

Tylaya smiled at her. The kid certainly had some guts. “So why can’t you sleep then?”

“It’s my Dad and Chloe.”

“Ah,” said Tylaya.

“My mum died last year. I haven’t forgotten about her.”

“And you’re worried that because Chloe and your Dad have gotten close that he’s forgotten about her?”

Molly nodded.

Tylaya sighed. “I don’t know you or your dad or Chloe, but I don’t think he’s forgotten your mum, sweetheart.”

“Then why is he interested in Chloe?”

She sat down on the mattress next to Molly and smiled at her. “What has happened to this planet is a terrible, terrible thing. Your mum, by the sounds of it, was one of the first people to be hurt by it. You’ve all survived for a whole year hiding from Daleks and making sure you don’t catch this plague.”

Molly nodded. “It’s been tough.”

“Disasters like this bring people closer together. I remember how I met Quinn. My boyfriend had died and I had transferred to a ship called he Fearless. It was too much for me to stay on the station we had lived together. Quinn and I never spoke to each other. Never even noticed each other. Then we were thrown together one day when we space jumped down to this planet to retrieve some lost science equipment. I broke my leg and we got stranded in the jungle. We were stuck there for three weeks before the Fearless found us. In that time we grew close to each other. We both thought we were going to die and that fear brought us closer together.”

Molly frowned. “Didn’t you love your old boyfriend anymore?”

Tylaya blew air out of her cheeks. “I did, but the disaster had brought me and Maxus closer together. I didn’t feel good about it, but I knew how I felt.”

Molly nodded.

“Your Dad still loves your Mum, but your Mum would want you both to move on.”

Molly smiled. “I’ll try to understand.”

Tylaya patted her leg and got up. “Goodnight, Molly.”

“Night, night Ty.”

And as Tylaya walked out of the room, the front wall exploded.

The Doctor was speechless and he just sat there smiling.

Millie grinned back at him and brushed the hair out of her eyes. “It’s hardly believable, is it?”

“You need to give me more information,” said the Doctor. “To find one of Caroline’s descendents…”

“Well my parents told me that they all lived quite happily in Thornsby, integrated into society and kept quiet about their powers. Caroline finally settled on the name Fieldgate-Parker and William - her son - had a child and so on and so on.”

“Poor Caroline,” said the Doctor, shaking his head and laughing, “she never knew which name to take. Parker, Farrington, Fieldgate…”

“My Mum was fascinated with our family history and gave her name as my middle name.”

The Doctor smiled. “So you know how to control your powers?”

“Yeah,” said Millie. “All the kids learnt off their parents and it was just passed down. I’d say we’re all over the country now. My twin sister moved away. She hated having the powers, but I was as fascinated as my Mum.”

“Well this day is just full of surprises,” said the Doctor. He then looked very serious. “You must not let the Daleks know that you have this power.”

“I’m not bloody daft you know,” laughed Millie, whacking him on the arm.

“And how did you know who I was?”

“The man with two hearts. Caroline wrote books about Professor Time who had two hearts. I read up all about what she got up to with you and I guess I just put two and two together when I realised you had a double heartbeat.”

“So you’re a nurse?”

“Medical student actually. Well, I was. I guess I’m not now. Just a field medic I suppose. I had just started college when the attacks happened.”

“Millie,” said the Doctor, leaning in, “you know that I’m from another time, don’t you?”

She nodded.

“Don’t lose hope. I can’t say much, but this planet will lift itself out of the ashes again.”

“How long? How long do we have to wait?”

The Doctor dithered. He shouldn’t really say anything, but Millie was different. Millie was descended from the Ancestors. She was special. He straightened himself up. “Nine years.”

She closed her eyes. “Nine more years of this.”

“I’m sorry.”

“You could help us to stop it now.”

“I can’t. My past is responsible for helping to stop this nine years from now. I can’t fiddle about with time that much.”

“I know.” Millie sighed. “Well I’ll be 27 by the time all of this is over with.”

There was a knock on the door and Peter bustled in looking worried. “Sorry to butt in, you two, but one of Thor’s lookouts has just spotted an explosion towards Wheelton Street.”

It was dark now and Thor was finding it difficult to navigate in the pitch darkness. There were no street lights and the cloudy sky blocked out any star and moonlight that might have aided them. He knew these streets like the back of his hand, but the destruction of a lot of them by the Daleks had decimated many of the old streets leaving nothing but rubble and confusion.

Thor led the part that comprised of Peter, the Doctor, Maxus and Millie. He had opted to take only those four because it was more dangerous at night. At night “things” crawled the streets. He couldn’t risk getting any more people killed.

They finally located Wellington street and the turn off to Wheelton street. When they finally got to the block in question around five houses were all burning, totally engulfed in flames, including 436.

“Is there any sign of life?” shouted the Doctor.

Maxus went running on ahead. “Tylaya! TYLAYA!”

“Keep it down you crazy idiot!” shouted Thor. “Do you want them to find us?”

But Maxus didn’t listen. He kept running until he reached the gate of 436. He was going to run inside, but the heat was too much for him to even get close.

“They torched the place,” said Thor, finally catching up with Maxus. “Standard Dalek practice. Locate your prey and then torch what’s left.”

“Do you think they’re still alive?” said Millie.

“Yes,” said the Doctor. “They have to be.”

“If they are they’ll be at the saucer,” said Thor. “And we’re not going there,” he added, reading the Doctors mind.

“You’re the resistance, aren’t you?” said the Doctor.

“Yes,” said Thor.

“Then why don’t you do yourself a favour and get resisting.”

“I can’t launch an all out assault on a Dalek saucer.”

“It’d be suicide, Doctor, just like a said before,” said Peter.

The Doctor leaned against the wall of 436 and sighed. “Okay, I can’t ask you all to risk your lives, but all I can do is ask for volunteers. Our friends could be in there. We need to at least try.”

“I’m with you,” said Maxus.

“Me too,” said Millie.

Thor sighed. “What about you, Peter?”

Peter shook his head. “I spent a lot of time building up our little group of survivors. I’m not about to throw it all away now.”

The Doctor nodded. “I understand, Peter.”

“Well,” said Thor, “I guess I can’t let my only field medic go off to battle without her leader at her side.”

Millie smiled shyly

“So I guess I’m gonna have to go with you.”

“Thank you,” smiled the Doctor. “We need to get back to the factory and draw up a plan of attack.”

They were about to turn and leave when there came a sound that made them all jump out of their skin. It was the sound some great, unearthly creature. And it was closing in on them.

Tylaya, Chloe, Sam and Molly were escorted along the street faster than they really could move. Tylaya had been injured by the blast and, thankfully, most of the rubble from around the window had missed Molly giving her only minor bruising. Tylaya on the other hand had burnt her arm and dislocated her shoulder. This weaker body was not used to all the knocks and bruises. When she had been in her old body she had suffered fractured ribs, concussion, broken bones…but she had at least been fit. She had been well toned and ready for those situations. Alice’s body just…well, wasn’t.

She hobbled alongside Molly who still managed to look stern despite their perilous situation with the Daleks.

It had started raining now and Tylaya could feel the water running down her back. She looked at Sam and Chloe who both had their arms around each other and she smiled. Surely it couldn’t all end here for them?

She wondered why the Daleks were keeping them alive, then she guessed that it could possibly be because they were fit and healthy. They hadn’t died from the plague after all. The Daleks had mentioned that when they were originally captured at the department store. They would make perfect Robomen.

“HALT!” said the lead Dalek as it scrapped to a stop on the pavement.

“Why are we stopping?” said Chloe.

“SILENCE,” said the Dalek.

“Just tell me why we’re stopping,” said Chloe.

“Easy, Chloe,” said Sam, squeezing her arm.

“No, Sam. I didn’t spend the last year fighting to save our lives just so these dustbins can take us prisoner.”


“She’s right though,” said Tylaya. “If you’re going to do anything to us then we deserve to know why.”

“HUMAN ARE CATTLE,” said the Dalek, swivelling its eyestalk towards each one of them. “YOU ARE FIT FOR ONLY A NUMBER OF PURPOSES.”

“Which are?” said Sam.




“Figures,” said Tylaya.

“Look,” said Sam, moving away from Chloe, “can you just let the women go?”

“Sam,” said Tylaya, “I can fight for myself.”

Sam turned to Tylaya. “I know, but I’ve got to try.”


“Thank you,” said Sam. “Thank you for understanding.”

“Sam,” said Chloe, “they don’t understand. They will never understand.” She looked over her shoulder nervously and then back to the Dalek.

“So why have we stopped?” said Tylaya.


“For what?” said Sam.


Chloe swallowed. She looked nervous.

“RUN!” yelled Thor.

“No!” said the Doctor. “I know what this thing is. You can’t outrun it.”

“And we can’t stay here either,” said Thor.

“The Doctors right,” said Millie, “we need to find shelter.”

The thing growled again. It was down the street and around the corner and it had their scent.

“Let’s just bust into one of the houses,” said Maxus.

“That one,” said Peter, pointing towards an old wooden front door across the street.

“I don’t know about this,” said Thor as they dashed across the road.

“On three,” said Maxus to Thor as they positioned themselves in front of the door. “One. Two. THREE!” They booted the door down and then piled inside, slamming the broken door behind them just as the dark shadow moved into the street.

They made their way to the front room and the Doctor opened a crack in the curtains, peering out. What emerged from the shadows was like something from a nightmare. It was green and shapeless with what resembled some form of tentacles to help it move.

There didn’t appear to be any defined face, but it made strange breathing sounds and an electronic-sounding roar.

“What is it?” said Millie, wrinkling her nose at the thing.

“It’s the Slither,” said the Doctor. “My friend met it, for want of a better word, sometime in the…well, sometime.”

At the end of the occupation Ian Chesterton, his old companion, had come face to face with the Slither and barely escaped with his life.

“I assumed there was only one. Unless this is the same one, then it looks like the Black Dalek has at least two wandering around.”

“There’s a Black Dalek?” said Peter.

“Yes,” said the Doctor, a dark look playing across his face. “And probably many other colours as well, all as dangerous as each other.”

The Slither was now moving away and it was almost around the corner when it stopped. What the Doctor and the others assumed was its head lifted up and sniffed at the sky. It then turned around, and with a great roar lumbered back towards the house.

“The back of the house!” said the Doctor. “Quickly!”

The group ran through the front room and into the kitchen. Thor and Maxus kicked the back door down and they all ran into the overgrown back garden. There was no way through the thorns and bushes. They were trapped.

They could hear the Slither in the house, sliding its way across the carpet.

“So,” said Maxus, gabbing a piece of the shattered doors wood, “what do we do now?”

“We stand and fight,” said Thor.

“Doctor?” said Millie, looking between him and the older looking Peter White.

“We have no choice,” said the Doctor, gripping his walking stick. “Good luck everybody.”

Tylaya and her group were still standing in the rain. By now it was a downpour and Tylaya felt her clothes sticking to her. She sighed and brushed the hair out of her face. Her eyes were stinging with the remnants of the shampoo that she had used this morning, it becoming reactivated again in the rain.

“This is getting stupid,” said Molly, growing impatient.

“Just wait,” said Chloe. “We’re fine.”

Tylaya shook her head. She thought about making a break for it, but by now she didn’t think they’d even make it as far as the other side of the road.

Massive rain drops bounced off the Dalek’s dome until finally it’s eyestalk twitched and it’s dome turned to face an alleyway, followed by the rest of it’s body.

Chloe tensed up as three more Daleks appeared, the lead one being a silver and black design; the saucer commander.

“WHERE IS THE REST OF THE GROUP?” said the saucer commander, it’s voice a little higher than the other Dalek.


“EXCELENT,” said the commander. It turned to face each of the group. “WHICH ONE IS THE ONE CALLED CHLOE?”

Tylaya frowned.

“I am,” said Chloe, stepping in front of the commander.


“What?” said Molly.

The truth slowly dawned on Tylaya.

“What’s going on, Chloe?” said Sam.

Chloe turned to the rest of them, a blank look on her face. “Sorry, guys. I’ve been working with the Daleks.”

Next time: Millie vs. the Daleks. Coming Sunday 31st August 2014.

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