‘The Austen Code’, Part Four, Chapter 15

regency-views-of-bath

15. Regency Bath

SCENE #138 – EXT – ROYAL CRESCENT – DAY, MORNING – 20TH NOVEMBER 1797
On Royal Crescent in 1797 Bath, a few horse carriages drive around the circle. The day begins early in the morning. There are a few people walking on the crescent at the point of dawn. At that moment, the TARDIS whooshes and grinds as it materialises next to No. 16 on the crescent. The blue police box makes a loud thump as it lands.


SCENE #139 – INT – TARDIS CONSOLE ROOM – N/A
Inside the TARDIS, the Doctor activates the scanner screen in the console room. He looks to see what’s outside as they’ve landed.

DOCTOR
(awed) “Ah, the Royal Crescent! Definitely Regency!” (calls) “Nyssa; Billy! We’ve arrived!”

Nyssa and Billy enter the console room. They’re now wearing attire for Regency Bath.

DOCTOR
(notices) “Ah! I see you two are both geared up!”

NYSSA
“I hope this appropriate to blend in, Doctor. I really like these clothes; the bonnet and the skirt. But I’m not sure about this corset I’m supposed to wear.”

BILLY
(grumbles) “I find this collar really tight! How men were able to cope wearing these stuffy suits I’ll never know!”

DOCTOR
“You’d be better off in those clothes, Billy. The Jane Austen world was more elegant compared to the dodgy London dwellings in Mr. Dickens’ time.”

NYSSA
“Aren’t you going to change, Doctor? You can’t walk about like that!”

DOCTOR
“Why not? It’s suitable, isn’t it?!”

BILLY
“This is the Georgian period! Not the Edwardian!”

DOCTOR
“They do play cricket in Georgian times, Billy! They’d appreciate me wearing this to honour the sport.”

Just then, the cloister bell tolls urgently within the TARDIS.

BILLY
“That bell again!”

NYSSA
“The catastrophe must be growing worse!”

DOCTOR
(sternly) “Yes. This is far more serious than I imagined.”

They listen, as the cloister bell keeps on tolling.

BILLY
“So how are we going to go about this? Where’s the first place to start?”

DOCTOR
(realises) “You’re carrying some film in your hand, Billy.”

Billy looks to see the roll of film he’s carrying.

BILLY
“Oh. Yes. I was developing those photos I took of Sulis Minerva. This is just the negative.”

NYSSA
“We may need Billy’s camera in case we come across those Volturnans.”

DOCTOR
“Yes, Nyssa. A blinding flash of light could easily stop them in their tracks.” (thinks) “Billy, how far are you from developing those photos?”

BILLY
“Not long. Should be ten minutes.”

DOCTOR
“I’d like to see them when they’re developed before we go out. Perhaps I may keep one of them just in case?”

BILLY
“Yeah sure, Doctor. Why do you want one?”

DOCTOR
“Oh…just in case, Billy. Just in case.”

NYSSA
“We need to keep in contact with each other whilst we’re in Regency Bath. We must take these communicators that we used when we were in two thousand and eleven.”

BILLY
“Well I’ve still got my communicator which you gave to me at the Roman Baths, Nyssa.”

DOCTOR
“I’ve still got mine since I last used it in Bath Abbey in two thousand and eleven.”

NYSSA
“They didn’t seem to be working when we tried to use them in the Pump Room in two thousand and eleven. Even when we were attacked by those creatures.”

DOCTOR
“They wouldn’t, Nyssa. The communicators were affected by the temporal convergence side-streams. We’ll have to use them before that happens.”

BILLY
“We may not know when that will happen.”

DOCTOR
“On saying that Billy, I think we should go out now and find Jane Austen.”

NYSSA
“But where? How are we to find her in the city of Bath?”

DOCTOR
“I suggest we find out, Nyssa! The local newspaper would have said something!”

BILLY
“But I thought you said you wanted those photos developed!”

DOCTOR
“Come on! Waste no time, make a change as they sing in ‘South Pacific’! Or was it ‘The King and I’?”

The Doctor pulls the door lever, as he makes to leave the TARDIS. The interior doors open. Nyssa and Billy follow the Doctor out as they leave.


SCENE #140 – INT – DRAWING ROOM, 5 ROYAL CRESCENT – DAY, MORNING – NOVEMBER 1797
Nearby the TARDIS, but unaware of its existence, Salvador; Thorpe-Willoughby and Tracy Gibbons now Lucy Gibbons sit in the drawing room of No. 5 Royal Crescent. Lucy becomes anxious, as she sits with her two menacing captors. There are a number of water zombies in the room snarling at Lucy.

LUCY
(agitated) “So what now? Are you two going to kill me?! Just like you killed Dr. Moore?!”

SALVADOR
(sharply) “Silence! You will do as Salvador commands!”

LUCY
“Where am I? And what are these vile things?!”

SALVADOR
(threateningly) “You will suffer the consequences if you refuse to follow my commands, Miss Gibbons!”

LUCY
“Consequences! What consequences?”

Tracy suddenly cries out pain, as she crumbles to the floor.

LUCY
(cries) “What-what are you doing to me? I feel so numb!” (gasps) “My hand! What’s happening to my hand?!”

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
(astonished) “Heaven save us! Mr. Salvador, what are you doing to her?”

SALVADOR
(coldly) “I’m simply erasing Miss Gibbons out of existence! And she will continue to fade out of time if she refuses to obey me!”

Salvador keeps on erasing Lucy out of existence, until…

LUCY
(cries) “Alright! Don’t kill me! I’ll do what you’ll say!”

SALVADOR
“I’m glad you’re able to see reason, Miss Gibbons!”

Lucy is soon reverted back to normal, as Salvador stops torturing her.

SALVADOR
(to Lucy) “Allow me to introduce you to your new guardian, Miss Gibbons. Lady Anne Musgrove!”

The door opens, as Lady Anne enters the room.

LADY ANNE
(coldly) “Greetings, Mr. Salvador; Mr. Thorpe-Willoughby.” (Pause) “Good morning, Miss Gibbons.”


SCENE #141 – EXT – MILSOM STREET – DAY, MORNING – 20TH NOVEMBER 1797
Later that morning, the Doctor, Nyssa and Billy enter Milsom Street. It’s fairly busy at the moment, as they search for a newspaper.

BILLY
“Strange to think that Miss Austen will soon find herself in Aquae Sulis after today. And this is supposed to be her first visit to Bath. No wonder she didn’t like Bath. And we seem to be the cause of her anxiety.”

NYSSA
“I hope we won’t change too much the way things are meant to be for Miss Austen. She was meant to have written two novels set in Bath, remember?”

BILLY
“Oh yes! ‘Northanger Abbey’ and ‘Persuasion’. I wonder how she’ll put her inspiration from all this into her novels.”

DOCTOR
“Here we are! There’s the newspaper stand!”

The Doctor makes his way over to the newspaper stand, as he buys a paper. Giving a farthing to the stand man, the Doctor takes the newspaper and begins to read it.

NYSSA
“There’s no knowing how we’re supposed to find her, Doctor. She could be anywhere in Bath at anytime.”

DOCTOR
“Ah that’s where you’re wrong, Nyssa.”

NYSSA
(surprised) “I am? How?”

DOCTOR
“Every morning Miss Austen’s uncle Mr. James Leigh Perrot visits the Pump Room for his normal healing remedy for his gout.”

BILLY
“So it’s a clue to start on. We could catch Miss Austen whilst we were at the Pump Room this morning.”

DOCTOR
“Precisely. Though we’ll have to be on the lookout in case we miss her.”

The Doctor flicks through the newspaper pages.

NYSSA
“What are you looking for, Doctor?”

DOCTOR
“Well, checking to see if the newspaper’s date confirms this is the twenty-seventh of November seventeen ninety-seven.”

NYSSA
“And?”

DOCTOR
(embarrassed) “Ah. Yes. Well…”

BILLY
“What is it, Doctor? Is it not November seventeen ninety-seven?”

DOCTOR
“Oh yes! Yes Billy, it’s November seventeen ninety-seven alright! But we’ve arrived a week early!”

NYSSA
“A week?!”

DOCTOR
“Yes. Must fix those chronic feedback fluxgates to restore the precise temporal landings.” (Pause) “Still never mind. A week to settle in Regency Bath will do us good. Explore Bath before we actually get on the job.”

BILLY
“It will be a long week, Doctor.”

NYSSA
“We have to avoid going to the Pump Room and meeting Jane Austen whilst we’re here. And that won’t be easy.”

DOCTOR
“No it won’t, Nyssa. That to be sure. We’ll have to stay confined in the TARDIS. At least I’ll be able to look at Billy’s photos.” (Pause) “Anyway. Let’s see if there’s anything else in the newspaper of anything that’s been happening…Aha! Yes!”

BILLY
(puzzled) “What is it, Doctor?”

DOCTOR
“There’s been some reported sightings of people fainting and taken ill. Somewhere in the area of…Queen Street.”

NYSSA
“That could be Volturnans. They might have attacked people and turned them into one of them.”

DOCTOR
“Yes. This Volturnan business has definitely gone out of hand.”

NYSSA
“We can’t handle both Jane Austen and the Volturnans at the same time, Doctor. We might have to go about our separate ways!”

DOCTOR
“It might cause suspicion if people see one of us wandering around waiting for Volturnans to jump out and attack people. For all we know, one of us might get turned into one of them if bitten on the neck suddenly.”

NYSSA
“I was only raising the issue, Doctor.”

Billy looks at the newspaper.

BILLY
(realises) “Wait a minute! There’s a job advert on the next page of that newspaper! There’s a job going in…Harrington’s Hotel. They require a footman or waiter. And it’s got the address in Queen Street. That’s where those creatures were attacking people.”

DOCTOR
(approvingly) “Good thinking, Billy! You go to Harrington’s Hotel and see to it you get the job!”

BILLY
“What?”

DOCTOR
“Nyssa and I will go down to the Pump Room and meet Miss Austen.”

NYSSA
“And hopefully find out how the temporal radiation levels have subsided at the current moment. Before the actual convergence.”

DOCTOR
“Yes.” (to Nyssa) “We’d better keep one communicator from the Grey Krasty for me and you, Nyssa.” (to Billy) “Whilst you keep one Billy and report…”

BILLY
(interrupts; anxiously) “Why does it have to be me to go down to the hotel and apply for the job? Why can’t you or Nyssa go? I mean…I know I’ve been a waiter before but, why must I be the one?”

DOCTOR
“This is a class-conscious society, Billy. And many people from Regency Bath attending the Pump Room would be higher class.”

NYSSA
“And since the Doctor and I are a lord and ladym we should be able to pass through with flying colours.” (consciously) “Meaning no disrespect, Billy.”

BILLY
(tight up) “None taken.” (sighs) “Alright, I’ll go down to the hotel and apply for the job.”

DOCTOR
“Splendid. And report anything that happens while you’re down there.”

NYSSA
“We’ll contact you as well if anything happens to us. Do take care of yourself.”

BILLY
“I’ll try. Though I imagine I’ll be a complete idiot going down there and applying for the job in an underhand manner.”

DOCTOR
“Nonsense. Just go in there, be confident and you’ll be fine.”

BILLY
(unconvinced) “Oh yes.”


SCENE #142 – INT – HARINGTON’S HOTEL – DAY, MORNING – NOVEMBER 1797
At Harrington’s Hotel, Billy meets Mr. Knightly as he applies for the job.

KNIGHTLY
“Mr. Billy Walker, you said?”

BILLY
“Yes, sir.”

KNIGHTLY
“And have you had much experience in this role, sir?”

BILLY
“Yes. I was a waiter in another hotel. It was…at the Rotenhend Hotel, sir.”

KNIGHTLY
“Is that in Bath, sir?”

BILLY
“No not really, Mr. Knightly. It’s…it’s in Kelton.”

Moment of silence.

KNIGHTLY
“Tell me, Mr. Walker. Why should I…?”

BILLY
“Please, Mr. Knightly. I know what you’re going to say. But I really would like you to give me a chance at this job. I’ve been out of work for some time and would like the opportunity to prove myself.”

KNIGHTLY
“Hmm? Would you now, sir?”

BILLY
“Yes.”

Another moment of silence.

KNIGHTLY
“Very well, Mr. Walker. I shall give you a trial run. You shall start work today. The other servants will tell you what to do.”

BILLY
“Thank you, sir.”

KNIGHTLY
“There is one thing however.”

BILLY
“What’s that, sir?”

KNIGHTLY
(bitterly) “Get rid of those clothes! They’re not the sort of clothes a waiter should be wearing!”


SCENE #143 – INT – PUMP ROOM – DAY, AFTERNOON – NOVEMBER 1797
After waiting a week, in the Pump Room, many people are gathered. The Doctor and Nyssa enter. Hearty chuckles echo from lordly men and women. People in small groups walk about discussing matters of state and make casual conversations. Others take to the fountain and drink its waters from the King’s Bath.

DOCTOR
“This is it! Now, Nyssa. Be on the lookout. Miss Austen could be anywhere at anytime. So we have to take the best opportunity!”

NYSSA
“What happens if we do find her, Doctor? How shall we go about it?”

DOCTOR
“Well, you should be able to engage her in conversation. I’ll go to the King’s Bath or somewhere around the Sacred Spring. I’ll use the temporal tracker to determine how strong the temporal field is at present.”

NYSSA
“I see.”

DOCTOR
“Just remember though, Nyssa. Miss Austen hasn’t met us yet. So try not to let out that we know her already. We don’t want her to act suspiciously towards us.”

NYSSA
“That’s not going to be easy Doctor, when we already know so much about her.”

DOCTOR
“Well do your best, Nyssa. That’s all! Just bear in mind how vital it is we must preserve the timeline. There have been far too many complications already.”

NYSSA
“How should we know where to find her? She won’t be on her own, will she?!”

DOCTOR
“Of course not. She’ll probably be with her uncle and aunt. She may also have her sister with her. So with those clues in mind, you shouldn’t have a problem finding her.”

NYSSA
(unconvinced) “Oh yes! No problem at all!” (Pause) “I hope Billy’s okay.” (puzzled) “Doctor? What is it?”

DOCTOR
(distracted) “That fountain! Where all the water’s being drawn from the King’s Bath? I’d better check to see if the water’s pure enough to drink. Just in case it might be infected.”

The Doctor walks over to the fountain whilst Nyssa walks by herself. She then she then bumps into somebody without looking. It happens to be Jane Austen. Both Jane and Nyssa are startled once they’ve bumped into each other.

JANE
“Oh do forgive me, my dear. I happen to forget myself so easily.”

NYSSA
“It’s alright. It’s my fault. I should have looked more carefully where I was going.”

This continues in Scene #48 in ‘Part Two’.


SCENE #144 – INT – ROMAN BATHS – DAY, AFTERNOON – 27TH NOVEMBER 1797
Whilst Nyssa and Jane talk to each other in Pump Room from ‘Part Two’, the Doctor, after excusing himself, stands in the area where the Sacred Spring is. It is an abandoned and forgotten area. The Doctor uses the temporal tracker to assess the temporal energy occurring. He bangs the temporal tracker while using it, as it doesn’t seems to work properly.

DOCTOR
“Work! Work, you stupid thing!”

The Doctor smacks his hand  on it and reacts in pain. But he manages to get the temporal tracker working and uses it to scan the whole area in the Sacred Spring.

DOCTOR
“In three hundred years time, you’ll be seen by many tourists you lucky spring. It’s a wonder you’re still being maintained for the Pump Room for people to drink your waters from. And it’s a wonder you happen to be the centre of this incomprehensible catastrophe!”

The spring keeps on bubbling and water swirls, as the Doctor uses the temporal tracker. He changes the setting on the tracker, as he is about to address the spring.

DOCTOR
“Ah yes! The tracker’s certainly is picking up a lot of residual energy! So the temporal readings are still strong in this area as it was in Aquae Sulis!” (Pause) “I wonder if the water’s infected here in this spring. It might not have happened yet as I checked the fountain and the water was alright.”

As the Doctor approaches the spring to check the water, he then stops as something blocks his way.

DOCTOR
(surprised) “Hello! Now that’s odd.”

The Doctor uses the tracker again, as it now bleeps very frequently.

DOCTOR
“An energy barrier. There’s an energy barrier in front of me that’s not getting me into the spring. Now that is interesting. I wonder who would be capable of possessing such technology as that. Assuming it is technology.”

Moment of silence. The Doctor soon leaves the Sacred Spring. As he leaves, a faint scream of terror echoes within the waters of the spring.


SCENE #145 – INT – PUMP ROOM – DAY, AFTERNOON – NOVEMBER 1797
Back in the Pump Room, Jane and Cassandra go off to join their aunt and uncle as they leave the Pump Room. Following the end of Scene #48 in ‘Part Two’, the Doctor returns to Nyssa and both talk quietly to each other.

DOCTOR
“Have you discovered anything else of significance that may be of use to us, Nyssa?”

NYSSA
“Yes. She said she just experienced a temporal shudder. So it must be happening at this moment.”

DOCTOR
“I agree. The temporal readings on the tracker that I used in the Sacred Spring area are off the scale. The Spring area is definitely the place with all of the temporal energies focused and localized upon it!”

NYSSA
“There’s also something else, Doctor. Miss Austen said she saw a shadow. Something that passed her when she was in the streets. She said she couldn’t tell what it was but she could feel it.”

DOCTOR
“Really? That is intriguing!”

Moment of silence.

NYSSA
“How did you get on with finding out about the waters being drawn in from the King’s Bath? Is it infected yet as it was in two thousand and eleven and Aquae Sulis?”

DOCTOR
“I checked the fountain to see if it was infected, but my nose sensed no toxic poison within the water.”

NYSSA
“Did you double-check that?”

DOCTOR
“I did. Or I was about to when I discovered an energy barrier around the spring.”

NYSSA
(astonished) “An energy barrier?”

DOCTOR
“Yes. Don’t ask me how it was there, but it was. It seemed to eradiate vast amounts of energy to block any person from entering the pool. But why it would be there or how it was constructed, I can’t guess.”

NYSSA
“Perhaps it’s something to do with Sulis when she rose out of the waters of the Sacred Spring in Aquae Sulis. We could check it if you like.”

DOCTOR
“And how are we going to do that, Nyssa? Go back to Aquae Sulis to find out. We can’t meet ourselves and exist twice over. The Blinovitch Limitation Effect, remember?

NYSSA
“We don’t have to go back to Aquae Sulis, Doctor. We’ve got Billy’s photos back in the TARDIS. I’ve even got the negative for one of Billy’s photos.”

DOCTOR
“Have you? Let me see it!”

Nyssa fetch out the negative for Billy’s photo from within her garments. She hands it to the Doctor. The Doctor takes the negative from Nyssa and examines it closely. After a while…

DOCTOR
(realises) “Of course! That explains it!”

NYSSA
(puzzled) “Explains what, Doctor?”

DOCTOR
“Come on! Back to the TARDIS!”

Still puzzled, Nyssa follows the Doctor out of the Pump Room.


SCENE #146 – EXT – ROYAL CRESCENT – DAY, AFTERNOON – 20TH NOVEMBER 1797
Billy reports the incident of the water-zombie attacking Mr. Knightly in Scene #51 from ‘Part Two’ to the Doctor via his communicator. The Doctor stands outside the TARDIS on Royal Crescent whilst Nyssa’s inside.

BILLY (V’O)
“Then that monster just ran off. It took a bite out of my employer Mr. Knightly and he’s just fainted! I don’t know what’s happened to the creature but it’s certainly gone now.”

DOCTOR
(through communicator; to Billy) “What are you doing with Mr. Knightly now, Billy?”

BILLY (V’O)
“Mr. Knightly is being brought to his room. Henry; Fanny and some of the maidservants are seeing to it now that Knightly’s comfortable.”

DOCTOR
(through communicator; to Billy) “Well don’t let anybody residing at the hotel enter his room. The mutation may have started already and it could be fatal for those who go near him.”

BILLY (V’O)
“Yes, Doctor.” (Pause) “Ironic, isn’t it? I had a week for something to happen and now it’s already happened. I feel ashamed for not saving Knightly.”

DOCTOR
(through communicator; to Billy) “It would start soon, Billy.”

BILLY (V’O)
“Yes you warned me, Doctor. Has Nyssa come back with the photos?”

DOCTOR
(through communicator; to Billy) “She’s fetching them from your room. She shall be out of the TARDIS shortly. Good job taking those photos. I’ve seen the negative and if my suspicions are correct we may be able to understand more about Sulis’ becoming.”

BILLY (V’O)
“Thanks, Doctor. Nice to be appreciated.”

Nyssa then steps out of the TARDIS, as she hands Billy’s photos to the Doctor.

NYSSA
“Here we are, Doctor. The photos Billy took of Sulis. Including the one that you saw the negative of.”

DOCTOR
“Thank you, Nyssa.”

NYSSA
“Is Billy there?”

DOCTOR
“Yes. He is.”

The Doctor takes the photos from Nyssa, whilst Nyssa takes the communicator from the Doctor. Nyssa talks to Billy via the communicator.

NYSSA
(through communicator; to Billy) “Billy? Are you there?”

BILLY (V’O)
“Yes I’m here. How are you, Nyssa?”

NYSSA
(through communicator; to Billy) “I’m fine. I’ve met Jane Austen and she’s expecting me to attend a ball in the Assembly Rooms.”

DOCTOR
“You and I are to attend the Assembly Rooms remember, Nyssa?”

NYSSA
(through communicator; to Billy) “The Doctor and I are to attend the Assembly Rooms, Billy.”

BILLY (V’O)
“Oh that’s good. I hope you’ll enjoy yourself this evening. You’ll be living a real Jane Austen story attending one of those balls.”

NYSSA
(through communicator; to Billy) “I wish you could be with us, Billy. I’ve missed you for some time. I would have liked you to see this new dress I’m wearing.”

BILLY (V’O)
“Oh I missed you too, Nyssa. We can make up by attending one of those balls in Regency style when we’ve finished this dreadful business.”

NYSSA
(through communicator; to Billy) “I hope so too.”

The Doctor then takes the communicator from Nyssa, interrupting her conservation with Billy.

DOCTOR
(through communicator; to Billy) “Billy. If anything happens whilst you’re there with Mr. Knightly, contact us via the communicator. Anything interesting you discover may be of value to us.”

A loud crackling noise echoes from the receiving end.

DOCTOR
(through communicator; to Billy; anxious) “Billy?! Billy, are you there?!” (Pause; raises voice) “Billy?!”

No response.

NYSSA
“Doctor, what’s happened?”

DOCTOR
“I don’t know. Some interference.” (Pause; realises) “Temporal interference!”


SCENE #147 – INT – ASSEMBLY ROOMS – DAY, EVENING – NOVEMBER 1797
Later on, the Doctor and Nyssa attend the Assembly Rooms as they enter the Great Octagon.

DOCTOR
“If my theories are correct and they usually are, those photos that Billy took of Sulis Minerva, comparing them with the negatives, confirm the source of the temporal convergence.”

NYSSA
“Whoever composed that creature out of water particles has been generating the convergence. The energy barrier you mentioned confirms it.”

DOCTOR
“Yes. When I saw the energy barrier in Billy’s photos was similar to the one I discovered at the Sacred Spring here and now I was really disturbed.”

NYSSA
“Let’s not dwell on it too much, Doctor. We still have to keep our appointment with Miss Austen.”

DOCTOR
“Yes I know! It’s just that everything’s ranged on this convergence! I don’t know how we’re going to stop i!. Or even if we can stop it!”

NYSSA
(assuredly) “We’ll find a way, Doctor. You’ll see.”

DOCTOR
“I wonder where Miss Austen is. She must have come by now.”

NYSSA
“We have been here for five minutes, Doctor. Give her time to get here.”

DOCTOR
“There’s no knowing how time is meant to work with us Nyssa. It might do it for us or against us.” (realises) “By the way, Nyssa. If we should happen to see Alexandros or Vernon here, make sure you don’t let out we know him already. It might be risky if time doesn’t work the same way as it does for us.”

NYSSA
“Very well, Doctor.” (Pause) “What technology could be able to generate a temporal convergence like this focused in the Sacred Spring, Doctor?”

DOCTOR
“Hmm? Err…not sure, Nyssa. It may be likely some alien influence is able to generate components of relative time substantially. Not even Time Lord technology could enable it.”

NYSSA
“Billy should be with us, Doctor. I wish he would join us and enjoy attending one of these balls.”

DOCTOR
(realises) “Nyssa! There she is!”

NYSSA
“Who?”

DOCTOR
“Miss Austen of course!”

NYSSA
“Where? I don’t see…oh yes! I see her!” (Pause) “Look! Miss Austen’s seen us!”

DOCTOR
“She’s with her sister. And there are two other ladies and a naval captain with them.” (Pause) “She’s coming this way!”

The scene carries on as before in Scene #56 in ‘Part Two’.


SCENE #148 – INT – PUMP ROOM – DAY, EVENING – NOVEMBER 1797
This scene continues after the TARDIS has taken Jane Austen away, following Scene #131 in ‘Part Four’.

CASSANDRA
(angrily) “I asked you, sir! What have you done to my sister, Doctor?!”

DOCTOR
(reassuringly) “Please don’t panic Miss Cassandra! Your sister’s safe!”

CASSANDRA
“Safe?! Since we met you and your company, it’s been nothing but safe!”

NYSSA
“Doctor, the Volturnans! They’re coming back!”

BILLY
“And the flood’s getting very worse!”

The water zombies, the Volturnans, advance on the Doctor and company, as they’re about to attack. Meanwhile, Thorpe-Willoughby and Lucy Gibbons have recovered.

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
(cruelly) “That’s right, Volturnans! Eat the flesh of their bones if you want!”

LUCY
“You don’t have to be so vulgar Alex!”

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
“Destroy them I say! Destroy them for Salvador!”

The Volturnans near their approach on the Doctor and company. Just then, Henry the waiter enters the room as he runs.

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
(annoyed) “What is this?! What’s that you’re carrying?!”

HENRY
“Here, you ugly devils! Eat this!”

Henry throws some meat the Volturnans. The Volturnans take the meat and eat it up.

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
“What do you think you’re doing, you minions?! Devour those intruders, not the meat!”

BILLY
“Henry! That was…”

HENRY
“Beef, yes! I’m sorry I couldn’t find any venison! They ran out of stock!”

WENTWORTH
“Dear sir, I don’t see why…”

Suddenly, the Volturnans shriek out loudly as they crumble to the floor and suffocate.

NYSSA
“They’ve fallen to the floor! The Volturnans collapsed after eating the meat!”

DOCTOR
“Now that’s interesting!”

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
(cries; angrily) “What have you done?! You’ve diminished my forces!”

Thorpe-Willoughby suddenly shifts for a moment, as he hears something in his head.

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
“Our client calls us, Miss Gibbons! I hear him in my thoughts!” (Pause) “We must leave this place at once! Take my hand!”

LUCY
“Oh no! I’m not going to take your hand!”

THORPE-WILLOUGHBY
“NOW!”

Thorpe-Willoughby takes Miss Gibbons’ hand, as they immediately depart.

DOCTOR
(cries) “No!”

During the temporal convergence, Thorpe-Willoughby and Miss Gibbons phase out and disappear.

NYSSA
“Where have they gone?! They seem to have left in a hurry!”

DOCTOR
“Probably they were on their way to Aquae Sulis. Or two thousand and eleven. It’s hard to tell.” (intrigued) “What was in that meat?!”

Both the Doctor and Nyssa investigate, as they examine one of the dead Volturnans. Billy and Henry stand beside them.

BILLY
“Doctor, this happened to Mr. Knightly! My boss at Harrington’s hotel! We fed him venison and he ended up just like these creatures! He was goner!”

HENRY
“That’s true! He was white as a sheet. I presumed the venison we fed him was poisoned!”

DOCTOR
(frustrated) “You knew this and you didn’t tell me and Nyssa, Billy! Why?!”

BILLY
(agitated) “I was about to tell you when I arrived at the Assembly Rooms, Doctor! I even tried to tell you before we came into the Pump Room! But you wouldn’t let me tell you!”

NYSSA
(realises; triumphantly) “Yes! Just as I thought!”

DOCTOR
“What, Nyssa?”

NYSSA
“The proteins in the meat caused these creatures to die through formaldehyde. The safeguards, the amino acids, decomposed when in contact with the meat. The proteins within their bodies can’t be restored. The Volturnans must be susceptible to many conditions and diseases if examinations and analysis were to be taken more closely.”

DOCTOR
“Oh never mind about that, Nyssa. We’ve got a more pressing matter!”

CASSANDRA
(insistently) “Doctor?! Where’s my sister?! Where did she go?”

DOCTOR
“To Bath! Some seventeen hundred and eighteen years ago! But you wouldn’t understand that, Miss Cassandra!”

WENTWORTH
“Cease your ramblings, sir! Tell us where Miss Austen is this instant!”

CASSANDRA
“Yes?! Where’s my sister now!”

DOCTOR
(awkwardly) “Ah, now I’m not sure! There’s been so much going on I can’t put my finger on how she would return to this point of history!”

CASSANDRA
(upset) “Stop your riddles, lest you may be called a scoundrel who’s abducted my sister! How could three…four people be so cruel!”

NYSSA
(realises) “Wait a minute! Doctor, you said she appeared to you in Bath Abbey in two thousand and eleven!”

DOCTOR
(realises) “Good thinking, Nyssa! She was chained to the altar when I saw her materialise in that year!”

BILLY
“You have an idea where she is then?”

DOCTOR
“Oh yes, Billy! Let’s hope these theories are correct! Let’s go!”

WENTWORTH
“Where to, sir?!”

DOCTOR
“Bath Abbey, Captain Wentworth!”

The flooding grows worse, as water pours in from the broken roof of the Pump Room.

BILLY
“Doctor, this water is nearly right up to our waist! It’ll soon become a tidal wave!”

NYSSA
“We must get to Bath Abbey this instant!”

DOCTOR
(cries; out loud) “Everyone! Run! Or wade as the term best suits it!”

CASSANDRA
“Will we find my sister, sir?”

DOCTOR
“I hope so, Miss Cassandra! I hope so!”

They wade their way out of the Pump Room to make for Bath Abbey.


SCENE #149 – INT – BATH ABBEY – DAY, EVENING – NOVEMBER 1797
In the cloisters of Bath Abbey, Jane Austen becomes anxious whilst strapped in her chair. Just then, Jane hears Billy calling for her.

BILLY
(calls) “Miss Austen?! Miss Jane Austen, where are you?!”

JANE
(relieved; overjoyed) “I’m here! I’m in here! Mr. Walker, is that you?!”

BILLY
“Miss Austen?! I hear you! I’m coming now!”

Footsteps approach and the door creaks, as Billy enters the room.

BILLY
“Miss Austen?! You’re here!” (puzzled) “Why are you strapped in a chair?”

JANE
(relieved; thrilled) “Oh, Mr. Walker! I’m so glad you’ve come! I’ve dreaded being in here! I thought I’d never be free!”

BILLY
(surprised) “You’re glad to see me then?!”

JANE
“Of course I am! Why should I not be glad to see you?!”

BILLY
“Here! Let me help you out of those straps!”

Billy starts to uncouple the straps that Jane Austen’s in. But he’s unable to release them.

BILLY
(struggles) “They won’t budge!”

The Doctor then enters, followed by Nyssa and Henry.

NYSSA
(relieved) “Well done, Billy! You’ve found her!”

BILLY
“Doctor, I can’t get Miss Austen out of this chair! These straps won’t budge!”

Billy tugs at the straps once more. Just then, the Doctor presses a button and it immediately unlocks Jane’s straps. Moment of silence.

DOCTOR
“There’s a button here if you know where to find it, Billy.”

BILLY
(embarrassed) “Yes. Thank you, Doctor.”

NYSSA
“Let me help you out of that chair, Miss Austen.”

JANE
“Thank you, Miss Nyssa! I imagine I will feel stiff…”

Jane stops, as she feels her back ache.

JANE
(laughs) “Yes. So I am. I have been in that chair for far too long. But thanks to Mr. Walker, I am free.”

BILLY
“I’m glad to be of service, Miss Austen.”

JANE
“That you certainly have been, young man.” (Pause) “Oh, but I’ve had a terrible experience! I am in need of a cup of tea!”

DOCTOR
(thinks) “Tea? Tea?” (realises) “Yes of course, tea! Tea! Tannin!”

BILLY
“What was that, Doctor?!”

DOCTOR
“That cure we had! Given to us by Miss Austen!”

JANE
“What say you, Doctor?”

DOCTOR
“Nyssa? Did you make a copy of that cure before we left the TARDIS?”

NYSSA
“Yes. I have all the ingredients in there except for tannin.”

BILLY
“So all we need now is tea!”

HENRY
“There’s a tea room near the abbey, Doctor!”

NYSSA
“Take me to that tea room, Henry! We must get some!”

HENRY
“Right-ho, Miss. Follow me!”

Nyssa and Henry run out of the cloisters to find the tea room.

JANE
“Is this tea for me, Doctor? For I am very thirsty!”

DOCTOR
“One moment please, Miss Austen.” (to Billy) “Billy, come and have a look at this!”

BILLY
“What is this machine here?”

As the Doctor and Billy examine the machine connected to Jane Austen’s chair, Cassandra and Wentworth enter.

CASSANDRA
(overjoyed) “Jane! Jane dear, you are well!”

JANE
(thrilled) “Cassandra!”

Jane and Cassandra embrace as they reunite again.

WENTWORTH
“Miss Nyssa and Mr. Clay told us you were in here when we met them, Miss Austen! It’s good to see you’re unharmed!”

JANE
“Thank you, Captain Wentworth! But I’m afraid I have been through a tumultuous experience!”

CASSANDRA
“Jane, what happened to you? Where were you? Why did you go in that box?!”

JANE
(overjoyed) “There’s so much to tell you Cassie that as of yet, I’m still overjoyed at seeing you! I thought I’d never see my dear sister again!”

CASSANDRA
“I’m sorry you had to be found by that boy, Miss Austen.”

JANE
“Don’t say that, Cass! I’ve been so wrong about Mr. Walker!”

CASSANDRA
“Really? How so?”

Whilst they talk, the Doctor and Billy examine the machine connected to Jane Austen’s chair.

BILLY
“What is it? It’s generating a lot of power!”

DOCTOR
“It’s a time machine, Billy.”

BILLY
“A time machine?!”

DOCTOR
“Yes. Not like the TARDIS of course. But it’s a machine that generates chronic and relative particles through the billionth second in the passage of time. It can send someone through the temporal barriers to reach a certain destination.”

BILLY
“You mean…if Miss Austen was strapped to that chair…she could be sent to the year…two thousand and eleven or Aquae Sulis to meet us here!”

DOCTOR
“Precisely! But why would anyone want to do that to Miss Austen and why keep it in the cloisters of Bath Abbey, I do not know.” (to Jane) “Miss Austen?” (realises) “Er…Miss Jane Austen. Tell me, who put you in that chair?”

JANE
“I know not, sir. But I saw somebody wearing a black veil mocking me as I was trapped in this chair!”

CASSANDRA
“Black veil? Like in Udolpho?”

JANE
“Yes. Like in Udolpho.” (Pause) “He spoke with a strange accent and threatened my life to send me to spend eternity in a future which I did not like. I do not know his reasons why he should want to harm me but they were evident nonetheless. He stated his name was Mr. Salvador!”

DOCTOR
(disturbed; realises) “Did you say…Salvador?”

JANE
“Yes. I did say Salvador, Doctor.”

BILLY
“That’s what Thorpe-Willoughby said his client’s name was when we were in the Pump Room.” (puzzled) “Doctor?”

Moment of silence, as the Doctor ponders. Just then, Nyssa returns with Henry.

WENTWORTH
“Hark! Miss Nyssa and Mr. Clay return!”

HENRY
“We’ve got the tea from the tea room. That water outside is now really high as we came back here.”

NYSSA
“Doctor, I put the tea in the bottle containing the cure. So the next step is the persuading part and how to reach us back in Aquae Sulis.”

DOCTOR
“Yes, Nyssa. Thankfully we have the machine to provide the transference from one time to the next.”

The Doctor takes the bottle from Nyssa and addresses Jane Austen.

DOCTOR
(to Jane) “Miss Austen?! I know this is going to be hard for you but I must ask you to help by doing something which will be harder for you to understand.”

JANE
“Pray sir, what is it you ask me to do?”

DOCTOR
“I need to send you to Aquae Sulis again!”

JANE
“Pardon, sir?”


SCENE #150 – EXT – ROMANS BATHS – DAY, AFTERNOON – SPRING 79 AD
Meanwhile in Aquae Sulis 79 AD, outside on the temple precinct, Alexandros suffers as the flooding of the city continues. The temporal shuddering still continues whilst he’s there. Sulis shrieks and screams, as she causes the suffering for Alexandros.

ALEXANDROS
(suffers) “Salvador! Where are you? Why haven’t you granted all my desires?! You said you’d provide them once we finished here!”

Alexandros makes his way over to a pillar. He tries to regain his balance as he stands up. He breathes deeply, whilst the rushing waters pass him by. Just then, Salvador approaches and stands by Alexandros.

SALVADOR
“Alexandros! My plans are in disarray! If you wish to redeem yourself then you will obey me!”

ALEXANDROS
“My lord?”

SALVADOR
“You shall have your desire, the lady Nyssa, if you do as I tell you to!”

ALEXANDROS
“Yes, my lord! I must have the lady Nyssa!” (Pause) “What is it you ask for for me to obey?!”

SALVADOR
“I will send you to seventeen ninety-seven! Go to Bath Abbey!”

ALEXANDROS
“What about Miss Gibbons? Am I to take her?”

SALVADOR
(gradually) “No. Leave her!”

Alexandros obeys Salvador’s commands, as he’s taken out of time from Aquae Sulis. Meanwhile Apaulia is left behind, whilst the flooding and the temporal convergence occurs.

APAULIA
(cries; despairingly) “No! No! Alex! Alex Vernon! Where have you gone?! You can’t leave me here! YOU CAN’T LEAVE ME!”

Whilst Salvador and Alexandros have gone…


REPRISAL OF SCENE #112 – EXT – ROMANS BATHS – DAY, AFTERNOON – SPRING 79 AD
…Jane Austen appears to the Doctor, Nyssa and Billy in 79 AD, as before at the end of Scene #112 in ‘Part Three’.

JANE
(distant; pleadingly) “Doctor! Miss Nyssa; Mr. Walker, pray! Hear me!”

DOCTOR
(puzzled; wheezes) “Nyssa? Billy? I see Jane Austen in front of me! She’s here!” 

The scene continues as before in Scene #112 in ‘Part Three’.


© Tim Bradley, 2017

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‘Part Four, Chapter 14’ of ‘The Austen Code’

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‘Part Four, Chapter 16’ of ‘The Austen Code’

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