‘The Tree of Riverloth’, Part Three, Chapter 11

11. “In Good Faith”

SCENE #95 – INT – RONDUS’ HOUSE, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
It is now evening. Back in Rondus’ house, Billy sits somewhere at a distance from the Doctor, Nyssa and Werna as they work together on the River Manipulator master plans. Eventually, Nyssa goes over to join Billy and sit beside him.

NYSSA
“Billy?”

BILLY
“Nyssa!”

NYSSA
“Are you alright?”

BILLY
“Yeah, fine. I didn’t want to disturb the flow of any discussion you three were having.” (Pause) “How’s it going anyway? With this strategy.”

NYSSA
“It’s coming together. The Doctor’s going through some final things with Werna on the master plans. I’ve already fulfilled my contribution to the proceedings.” (Pause; gradually) “You’re unhappy aren’t you, Billy?”

BILLY
“Unhappy? Why should I be unhappy?”

NYSSA
“You’re uncomfortable with how things have turned out. You weren’t expecting so much danger in our travels in the TARDIS.”

BILLY
(gradually) “I should have paid more attention, shouldn’t I? You and the Doctor told me it wasn’t going to be all glamorous and exciting as I thought it’d be. I suppose that makes me stupid.”

NYSSA
“You’re not stupid, Billy. Don’t ever think that. You’re just not as experienced as I and the Doctor when travelling in space and time.”

BILLY
(gradually) “I always wanted to be like one of the superheroes when I was growing up. Like Superman! I used to love reading ‘Superman’ comics.”

NYSSA
“Superman?”

BILLY
“Yes! He’s a comic book character I used to read when I was a kid. He came from the planet Krypton and was sent to Earth to protect us and save us from any kind of danger. I always wanted to be like him. It’s funny how your mind works when you’re a kid.”

NYSSA
“You wanted to be like him? This Superman hero of yours.”

BILLY
“Yes. Although not wearing the blue and red cape of course. Even though blue is my favourite colour. I don’t have superhuman strength or the power to fly.” (Pause) “But I’ve always wanted to help and save people from any evil or danger in the world. On Earth where I come from.”

NYSSA
“That’s very admirable of you, Billy.”

BILLY
“Yeah.” (Pause) “I thought that was what I’d be doing when travelling with you and the Doctor. Saving people’s lives; being heroic; getting the girl I would want to fall in love with.” (clears throat) “Anyway, that seems to have blown out of the window now. I seem to have failed in that.”

NYSSA
“You haven’t failed, Billy. You are a hero to me! I mean what I say! You’ve helped save people when we were on Earth stopping the Vegrons and Sinroth at that railway of time. You helped me and the Doctor on the space hotel. You’ve even saved my life a number of times! And you saved someone’s life on a dying spaceship when Daleks and Dwaxi came.”

BILLY
“Even though that was a mistake, according to the Doctor.”

NYSSA
“Even if that was a mistake, it was very heroic and noble of you. You’re a hero, Billy Walker! As much as you care to deny it. You can still be a hero by helping us to defeat the Melkurs and Morguth on this planet.”

Moment of silence.

BILLY
(gradually) “Your friends Adric and Tegan? Did they leave on bad terms when they were with you and the Doctor in the TARDIS?”

NYSSA
“Not really.” (Pause) “Adric died when he was aboard a space freighter crashing into Earth. It was a shock and it upset us all in the TARDIS.”

BILLY
“Adric died?!” (Pause) “Oh I’m sorry to hear that, Nyssa.”

NYSSA
(gradually; continues) “Tegan left us when the Doctor and I dropped her off at Heathrow Airport. It was her wish to stay behind. I miss her terribly. I miss all my friends who come aboard the TARDIS and leave so quickly.”

BILLY
(quietly) “I see.”

NYSSA
(gradually) “Billy, I’m not going to interfere with your decision to leave us. It’s what you want if you want to go home.” (Pause) “But I want you to leave us in good faith. I don’t you want to leave us out of regret. That you regretted joining me and the Doctor. Because I like you, Billy.”

BILLY
“You…like me, Nyssa?”

NYSSA
“Yes, Billy! I do like you. And I would like you to stay with us for a while longer before you leave us. Because I think your company with me and the Doctor has been invaluable. I’m sure you’ll agree if you stayed.”

BILLY
(gradually) “How did you cope with seeing all the dangers and troubles, Nyssa? When you first joined the Doctor in the TARDIS I mean.”

NYSSA
(gradually) “It wasn’t easy, Billy.” (Pause) “But the Doctor guided me through any dangers that we faced in our travels together. I’m sure the Doctor will guide you too if you’ll let him.”

BILLY
“And you, Nyssa? Will you give me guidance too?”

NYSSA
“I’m sure I can help out. I’ve had the experience you know.”

Moment of silence, as Billy contemplates what Nyssa has said. Just then, the Doctor turns up with Werna to join Nyssa and Billy.

DOCTOR
“Ah! There you are, you two! It’s time we set off, I think.”

NYSSA
“You’ve come to a decision then, Doctor.”

DOCTOR
“Yes! Absolutely! Werna and I have gone through the final parts of our strategy and I think we can achieve what we want to defeat Morguth and his Melkurs from whatever they’re doing.”

BILLY
“So where do we go from here then, Doctor?”

DOCTOR
“We’re going to split up into two groups, Billy. Nyssa and I are to inspect the Induction Chamber. You Billy are to go with Werna, Saloga and Milgi to disable the River Manipulator.”

BILLY
(despondent) “Oh. I see.”

DOCTOR
“Disabling the River Manipulator will also help us to find a way of reversing the process of saving those people drained of water to give Morguth. Also to cancel Morguth’s existence and to save the Tree to gain full control of the River, if we’re lucky.”

WERNA
“I’ll go and fetch Saloga and Milgi. I’ll tell them to come with us in the TARDIS so that we can set off!”

DOCTOR
“Of course Werna, of course. You go off and do that.”

Just then, Saloga and Milgi enter from the hallway to meet them.

SALOGA
“Werna; Doctor! We’ve got to get out of this house! Quickly we must!”

WERNA
“Why, Saloga; Milgi? What’s the matter?”

MILGI
“There are Melkurs coming to the house, Werna! The Melkurs are about to crash their way in and catch us! We must get out of here!”

DOCTOR
“Then it’s just as well we are getting out of here, Milgi!” (calls) “Come on, everyone! Into the TARDIS!”

WERNA
“Right!”

Everyone gets moving, as the Doctor bundles his five young friends into the TARDIS. They go in one by one, as the Doctor gets them in.

DOCTOR
“Come on, come on! Hurry, you five! We haven’t got much time!”

Suddenly, the Melkurs burst their way into the house through the front door. They stomp their way to the Doctor and everyone at the TARDIS.

NYSSA
“Doctor! The Melkurs, they’ve broke into the house!”

BILLY
“They’re going to fire on us!”

DOCTOR
“Quickly, Nyssa; Billy! Into the TARDIS now!”

Nyssa and Billy get into the TARDIS after Werna; Saloga and Milgi. The Doctor gets into the TARDIS and looks to see the Melkurs, before closing the door behind him.

DOCTOR
(cheerfully) “See you later, chaps! Have a nice day!”

The Doctor closes the TARDIS doors. The TARDIS then dematerialises and fades away, whooshing and grinding as it does. The Melkurs watch as the TARDIS fades away. They then get into mental contact with their master, Morguth.

MELKURS
(in unison; in mental contact; to Morguth) “Our master! Great Morguth! The TARDIS has gone!”


SCENE #96 – EXT – CONSTRUCTION SITE, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
At the construction site with the Riverlothians, Sarumane and Proctor Glorfini join Morguth, who is in mental contact with the Melkurs.

MORGUTH
(in mental contact; to Melkurs) “Yes. I understand. Well done, Melkurs.” (Pause) “Stand by.”

MELKURS
(in unison) “As you command, our master.”

Morguth breathes deep once he’s finished his mental communication with the Melkurs.

SARUMANE
“What’s the matter, great Morguth? What’s happened?”

MORGUTH
(furiously) “The Doctor and his friends have escaped in their TARDIS! My Melkurs reported this to me!”

SARUMANE
“And your Melkurs didn’t catch them in time. That’s unusual. I thought the Melkurs were meant to be powerful.”

MORGUTH
“I told them not to apprehend the Doctor and his friends, Sarumane. Merely to observe and scare them. I have my reasons.”

GLORFINI
(gloats) “Why didn’t your Melkurs capture them, great Morguth? Are your Melkurs not as good as my Fosters then? Since all they do is walk about in pathetic robot bodies?”

MORGUTH
(quietly; fuming) “Do you intend to provoke me, Proctor Glorfini?”

SARUMANE
(anxiously) “Oh! I’m sure Proctor Glorfini meant nothing by that remark, great Morguth! He was only trying to make light of the matter.”

MORGUTH
“I understand only darkness! Not light, Sarumane. It was clear what your Proctor Glorfini was trying to do. He shall suffer for that!”

At that moment, Morguth probes into Glorfini’s mind. Glorfini cries out loud and shrieks in pain as Morguth probes into him.

GLORFINI
(cries; pleads) “Stop! Please stop this now, Morguth! You’ve burning my head! I can feel you inside my head!”

MORGUTH
(viciously) “Good! That’s good to hear, Proctor Glorfini! Then you’ll know that it is unwise for you to make fun of Morguth and his servants. That you know I’m always with you inside your mind should you provoke me again!”

Glorfini continues to cry out and shriek in pain as Morguth probes even harder into his mind.

SARUMANE
(pleads) “Stop this, Morguth! Stop hurting Glorfini here!”

MORGUTH
“You wish to oppose me too do you, Sarumane?”

SARUMANE
“Glorfini is still valuable to us, Morguth! Don’t kill him so quickly! I need him anyway! Please stop this, Morgtuh! Stop hurting him!”

MORGUTH
“Oh very well.”

Morguth eventually frees Glorfini from his mind probing of him. Glorfini falls to the floor, weakened by Morguth inside of him. Sarumane helps him up to his feet.

SARUMANE
“Are you alright, Glorfini?”

GLORFINI
“I think so. Thank you, Consul Sarumane.”

MORGUTH
“You thank him Glorfini, when it is me you should be thanking! After all, I’ve given you a splendid demonstration of my power. Or do you wish me to prove it to you further the extent of my powers.”

SARUMANE
“There’s no need for that, Morguth my lord!”

MORGUTH
(goads) “Go on, Glorfini! Go on! I challenge you! I dare you to provoke me further so that I can probe into your mind again! To give you more pain! Provoke me I say!”

GLORFINI
(grudgingly) “I shall not provoke you again, great master Morguth! You’ve made your point already!”

MORGUTH
(gloats) “You’re all so weak and pathetic, you Riverlothians. You can’t even stand up to me! To match my strength and my power! You’re all cowards! Even if you dared to try and oppose me, you wouldn’t survive. Not for long anyway.”

SARUMANE
“Shouldn’t you be focusing on searching for the Doctor and his friends, great Morguth? To discover where they have gone to in their TARDIS?”

MORGUTH
(gradually) “I know where they have gone, Sarumane. I shall command my Melkurs to go there.” (in mental contact; to Melkurs) “Oh Melkurs! Melkurs hear me! Your master Morguth speaks!”

MELKURS (V’O)
(in unison) “We hear you, our master Morguth!”

MORGUTH
“Send two groups of your kind to the River Manipulator Room and the Induction Chamber. Stay in hiding. The Doctor and his friends will go to each room in two different groups. One group will go to the River Manipulator Room. The other group will go to the Induction Chamber. Wait there in hiding until I give you the command. Do nothing as you hide and wait for my commands, Melkurs!”

MELKURS (V’O)
(in unison) “We obey, our master! We will go, as you have instructed!”

MORGUTH
(bellows) “Then go instantly!”

The Melkurs go at Morguth’s command. Morguth sighs with delight and malicious contentment before chuckling to himself.

MORGUTH
(chuckles) “Yes! The Doctor and his friends will be captured. They won’t escape me so easily next time!”

As Morguth glorifies on his own victory, Sarumane helps Glorfini to sit somewhere away from earshot of Morguth and where the Riverlothian slaves are at the construction site.

SARUMANE
“Are you feeling better, Glorfini?”

GLORFNI
“Much better now, thank you Sarumane?” (Pause) “May I ask what is going on through your mind now, Sarumane?”

SARUMANE
(gradually) “I think…I fear I may have done the wrong thing in summoning Morguth into existence on our world, Proctor Glorfini.”

GLORFINI
(gradually) “I fear that you may be right, Consul Sarumane. What will you do now then?”

SARUMANE
“I don’t know, Glorfini. I honestly don’t know.”


SCENE #97 – INT – RIVER MANIPULATOR ROOM, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
Inside the River Manipulator Room, the TARDIS arrives. It whooshes and grinds before making a loud thump as it lands. Eventually, the doors open and the Doctor and his friends step out.

DOCTOR
“Right! Here we are in the River Manipulator Room.” (to Werna) “Now Werna! Are you sure you, Saloga and Milgi know what to do regarding the River Manipulator.”

WERNA
“Yes. We have to disable it by first shutting down the power feeds fed into that conduit from the River Manipulator into the Induction Chamber. Once we’ve done that…”

MILGI
“We will detach the technology from the manipulator apparatus as quickly as we possibly can. To disrupt any further operations that Morguth and his servants currently have at the moment on Riverloth.”

DOCTOR
“Exactly!” (to Werna) “Werna, you supervise the operation at hand.” (to Billy) “Billy, you keep close watch for any Melkurs or Fosters at the door and prevent them from coming in here whilst Werna, Saloga and Milgi do their job.”

BILLY
“Couldn’t I come with you and Nyssa, Doctor? You two need protecting as much as Werna, Saloga and Milgi do.”

DOCTOR
“Billy, Werna; Saloga and Milgi need more protection from you than Nyssa and I need protecting.”

BILLY
“But Doctor…”

DOCTOR
“Billy, please! The disablement of the River Manipulator requires three people to help with disconnecting the cables from the Tree. You staying here will give them the protection they need.”

BILLY
“I don’t see how…”

DOCTOR
“Please, Billy! Stay with Werna and the others. I’m sure they’ll greatly appreciate it. Nyssa and I would greatly appreciate it.” (to Nyssa) “Wouldn’t you agree, Nyssa?”

NYSSA
“If that’s what you think Billy should do then yes, Doctor.”

DOCTOR
(to Billy) “There you are, you see Billy!”

BILLY
(grudgingly) “Oh very well. But I hope I’ll be seeing you and Nyssa again.”

DOCTOR
(reassuringly) “Oh Nyssa and I will be fine downstairs, Billy! Don’t worry about us! We’ll be busy attending to the Induction Chamber and on the lookout for Fosters and Melkurs at the same time.”

NYSSA
“We’ll have the Induction Chamber doors locked once we get inside to prevent any Melkurs and Fosters from entering to interrupt us. Besides it shouldn’t take long for us to shut down the power feeds from the River Manipulator into the Induction Chamber from up there.”

DOCTOR
“Precisely, Nyssa! Anyway, if anything should happen to go wrong with both our endeavours then we’ll meet up back at the TARDIS.”

BILLY
(surprised) “Just like that, hey Doctor? We must back at the TARDIS if anyone goes wrong?”

DOCTOR
“Just like that, Billy.” (to everyone) “Now please everyone! You have your tasks! Go to them! Nyssa and I will be downstairs in the induction chamber if you need anything!”

WERNA
“The Induction Chamber is right behind that door there, Doctor. Go down the stairs behind that door and you’ll be in the Induction Chamber.”

DOCTOR
“Thank you, Werna.” (to Nyssa) “Come on, Nyssa. Let’s go!”

The Doctor heads off to the door, whilst Nyssa says goodbye to Billy.

NYSSA
“Goodbye, Billy! See you later on!”

BILLY
“Yes see you later on, Nyssa! Good luck to you too, Doctor.”

NYSSA
“Good luck to you too, Billy!”

DOCTOR
(calls) “Come on, Nyssa! Hurry up!”

NYSSA
“Bye, Billy!”

Nyssa kisses Billy on the cheek before she goes off to join the Doctor. Billy watches her go in amazement.

BILLY
(amazed) “Yeah! Bye Nyssa!”

Nyssa is now with the Doctor, as he opens the door to lead down into the Induction Chamber.

DOCTOR
“Downstairs we go then, Nyssa.”

The Doctor and Nyssa go through the door and head off downstairs. Their footsteps echo from on the stairs in the River Manipulator Room. Billy meanwhile returns to Werna, Saloga and Milgi as they attend to disabling the River Manipulator.

WERNA
“Well, Saloga; Milgi? How’s that going then? With stopping the power feed from the River Manipulator.”

MILGI
“Not very well, Werna. The closing down of the power feed from the River Manipulator requires an authorisation code. Something which we don’t have apparently.”

SALOGA
“Only Sarumane would have those kinds of codes, Werna.”

WERNA
“Well surely you can find a way to sabotage the device, you two.”

MILGI
“Not without short-circuiting a vital component that may cause damage to the Tree itself, Werna.”

SALOGA
(realises) “The Tree! The Tree, that’s it! Exactly!”

MILGI
“What’s ‘exactly’, Saloga?”

SALOGA
“We need to find a way of communing with the Tree to shut down all available resources. To shut down the one component that feeds power in the conduit from the River Manipulator to the Induction Chamber.”

WERNA
“Do you think we can commune with the Tree from here, Saloga?”

MILGI
“Why not? After all, this room is supposed to be where Sarumane makes contact with the Tree. Maybe not with words of thought. But with the technology he uses with the River Manipulator…”

SALOGA
“I can have a go at it. See if there’s anything on the River Manipulator I can use to make contact with the Tree to let it know what it is we’re trying to do. I’ll see if I can work something out, shall I?”

WERNA
(eagerly) “You go ahead and do that, Saloga.”

Whilst Saloga goes to attend to this thing with the River Manipulator, Billy addresses Werna.

BILLY
“Is there…is there anything you’d like me to do, Werna? I don’t want to get in your way or feel like I’m useless to you two.”

WERNA
“No, Billy. I think we’re fine as it is. You go and watch at the door for any Melkurs or Fosters like the Doctor told you to.”

With that, Billy grudgingly makes his way over to the door of the River Manipulator Room to look out for any Melkurs and Fosters as instructed.

BILLY
(sighs; wryly) “It’s nice to know I’ve got this rotten job to do, isn’t it?”


SCENE #98 – INT – INDUCTION CHAMBER, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
Downstairs in the Induction Chamber, the Doctor and Nyssa look around to take in their surroundings.

NYSSA
“Should we have left Billy with Werna, Saloga and Milgi, Doctor? He seemed dejected when you told him to stay with those three.”

DOCTOR
“Billy’s more accustomed to dangers than Werna and her friends are, Nyssa. Having Billy there on the lookout for Melkurs and Morguth will give him, Werna, Saloga and Milgi the advantage to make a run for it before they get captured and everything.”

NYSSA
“That’s fair enough, I suppose.”

Moment of silence, as they look around.

NYSSA
“Well. It is a very big room this Induction Chamber, isn’t it?”

DOCTOR
“Yes. Very big indeed.” (Pause) “You check the doors are locked, Nyssa. I’ll see for myself what’s in these induction cubicles and whether they’re empty or not.”

NYSSA
“Yes, Doctor.”

Nyssa goes over to check the doors are locked, whilst the Doctor inspects the induction cubicles. The Doctor opens one of the induction cubicles to look inside. Moment of tense silence ensues.

DOCTOR
“Oh dear. This isn’t what I expected to see.” (Pause) “I’m so sorry, you people in there. I’m very sorry indeed.”

Nyssa eventually returns joining the Doctor at the induction cubicle.

NYSSA
“The doors are locked, Doctor. I can’t see any Melkurs…” (realises) “What is it, Doctor? What’s the matter?”

DOCTOR
“Look, Nyssa! See who’s inside in this cubicle?”

Nyssa looks. She gives a gasp of horror, before another moment of silence ensues. The victims who were tributes for Sarumane’s tests are still inside these cubicles.

NYSSA
(horrified) “They’re still keeping them in these cubicles. Connected with tubes inside their bodies. Why, Doctor? Why?”

DOCTOR
“Morguth is keeping them in a constant state of perpetual stasis. To maintain his existence, I suppose.”

NYSSA
(gently; to victims) “Hello! Anyone of you in there? Can you hear us? Can you understand us?”

Moment of silence. No response from the victims who were tributes inside the cubicles.

NYSSA
(gently; to victims) “We mean you no harm. We can help you.”

Still no response from the victims inside the cubicle.

DOCTOR
“They seem to be unresponsive, Nyssa.”

NYSSA
“They’re just staring into space. They know we’re here. But they’ve been drained of all life. Like our presence doesn’t really matter to them. They must be in a severe state of shock to become like this.”

DOCTOR
“Perhaps, Nyssa. Perhaps.” (Pause) “Hold on! What’s this?”

The Doctor puts his glasses on as he inspects something inside the cubicle for a moment.

NYSSA
“Doctor! That looks like an energy meter! For what though? To keep readings for these people?”

DOCTOR
“Yes, Nyssa. I believe this meter registers the blood flow level of these victims. They’re connected to those tubes inside their necks, you see.” (Pause) “It looks very serious I’m afraid, Nyssa. The drainage of blood from their bodies has taken its toll.”

NYSSA
“I’m not surprised, Doctor. By no account should they be in this state.”

DOCTOR
(gradually; thinks) “Perhaps this is the key to it all, Nyssa. To reverse what Sarumane has done on Riverloth and by bringing Morguth to existence. And also to restore the Tree to its ‘keepership’ of Riverloth.”

NYSSA
“You mean there could be a chance for us to save these people.”

DOCTOR
“Perhaps. Let’s check out the control terminals for these induction cubicles. First we need to see if we can close off power from the River Manipulator into the Induction Chamber.”

The Doctor and Nyssa leave the induction cubicle and approach a computer terminal close beside them. The Doctor enters keys and buttons into the control terminal to find what he’s looking for.

DOCTOR
“Hmm. That’s not good, is it?”

NYSSA
“What is it, Doctor? What have you found?”

DOCTOR
“Just a little nuisance really. We can’t close off power without causing damage to these people. We’ll have to allow the last vestiges of power flowing into these induction chambers for the people to survive long enough to avoid killing them at all costs.”

NYSSA
“But Doctor. Surely if we turn off the power from the River Manipulator to the Induction Chamber, we can free these people by disconnecting the power cables from them. To prevent Morguth from existing.”

DOCTOR
“It’ll be too risky. Nyssa. I’d be hesitant to even try it. Simply disconnecting the power cables from them could easily kill them.”

NYSSA
“You’re saying they’d be too weak and vulnerable if we tried to cut off any power from the River Manipulator to this place. That the shock could easily have them killed.”

DOCTOR
“That is likely to be the case, Nyssa.” (Pause) “But with a bit of tinkering at these controls, I don’t see why we can’t reverse Morguth’s manifestation into this world. It’ll mean having to keep these people connected to their tubes for a little while longer…”

NYSSA
(finishes) “But by reversing the blood flow back into these people from the waterfall into this place here, we can stop Morguth from ever existing.”

DOCTOR
“Exactly. Now just bear with me a minute, Nyssa. This could take some time here.”

Nyssa waits as the Doctor tinkers away with work at the control panels. The Doctor then stops working for a moment.

DOCTOR
“Nyssa? Are you sure you checked that there aren’t any Melkurs about?”

NYSSA
(gradually) “I’m sure I have, Doctor. There weren’t any when I locked those doors to this chamber.”

The Doctor and Nyssa don’t realise though that the Melkurs are lurking nearby somewhere in the Induction Chamber, waiting to spring on them.


SCENE #99 – INT – RIVER MANIPULATOR ROOM, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
Back in the River Manipulator Room, Billy keeps watch on guard whilst Werna, Saloga and Milgi work away at disabling the River Manipulator. Saloga uses the technology to commune with the Tree.

MILGI
“Are you having much luck, Saloga?”

SALOGA
“Not sure, Milgi. I’m not a good scientist like my father was. I don’t even know if the controls I’m using to contact the Tree are the correct ones.”

WERNA
(to Billy) “Everything alright at the moment, Billy?”

BILLY
“At the moment yes, Werna. Can’t see any Melkurs or Fosters outside.”

A bleeping noise echoes from one of the consoles by Saloga at the River Manipulator control terminals.

SALOGA
“Wait! Hold on a minute! I’m getting something here!”

Saloga enters a few keys on the control panel next to him to check.

SALOGA
(triumphantly) “Yes! Yes I’ve got through to the Tree!”

MILGI
“Are you sure, Saloga?”

SALOGA
“Yes. I can see a symbol representing a Tree on this computer terminal. It must be it! The codes I’m entering seem to be registering. The Tree is able to understand what I’m trying to say to it.”

BILLY
“‘Her’ actually!”

WERNA
“Pardon, Billy?”

BILLY
“Nyssa told me. When she was in telepathic contact with the Tree earlier. The Tree is actually a ‘she’.

SALOGA
“Very well. A ‘she’ then.”

WERNA
“Can you give the Tree our message? Of what we’re trying to do. Of what we want to know in terms of which component to deactivate before disabling the River Manipulator.”

SALOGA
“I don’t need to, Werna. It…she’s sent the information already.”

MILGI
“What? Just like that? That quickly?”

SALOGA
“Yes! She anticipated what we were trying to know when we were making contact. She must know everything this Tree.”

BILLY
“Why not? The Tree is your leader after all, isn’t she?”

MILGI
“Yes. So she is.”

WERNA
“Well? What is it, Saloga? What component do we need to deactivate?”

SALOGA
(checks) “Err…Component Kes-Dash-U-N-Zero-Dash-Seven-One-Six-Five. That’s underneath the River Manipulator according to the schematic sent to us on this display panel.”

MILGI
“So that’s it then. We’ve got to shut off that component first to close the power feed to the Induction Chamber before disabling the River Manipulator. It’s that straight forward.”

WERNA
“Right. Let’s get on with it then and find that component, shall we?”

All pleased, Werna, Saloga and Milgi begin to start work with finding the component they need to deactivate.


SCENE #100 – EXT – CONSTRUCTION SITE, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
At the construction site, Morguth senses and knows what is happening in the River Manipulator Room and he laughs out loud.

MORGUTH
(laughs) “So…you found out the answer then. You young rebellious types. Well…don’t think that information from the Tree will save you so easily!” (bellows; to Melkurs) “Melkurs!”

MELKURS (V’O)
(in unison) “We hear you, our master!”

MORGUTH
“Begin your attack! Now! Now! Do it now!”

MELKURS (V’O)
(in unison) “As you command, our master!”


SCENE #101 – INT – RIVER MANIPULATOR ROOM, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
Back in the River Manipulator Room, Werna, Saloga and Milgi are so absorbed in their work before Melkurs appear out of thin air in the room. They advance towards the four youngsters in the room, moving slowly and menacingly as they go.

MILGI
(cries) “Melkurs! They’re in the room with us!”

WERNA
(panics; to Billy) “Billy, you were supposed to keep watch for any Melkurs that came in here!”

BILLY
“I have been keeping watch, Werna! I didn’t see any of them come in! I’ve had my eyes on the door!”

SALOGA
“They must have come in by stealth! When we weren’t looking!”

WERNA
(cries) “Quickly! Everyone out of here!”

Billy, Werna, Saloga and Milgi make a run for it out of the front door of the River Manipulator Room to escape the Melkurs. Suddenly, Saloga and Milgi get captured by the Melkurs manhandling them. They cry out before being forced to their knees on the floor.

WERNA
(cries) “Saloga; Milgi!”

SALOGA
“Get out of here, Werna! The Melkurs have got us! Don’t let them get you and Billy too!”

MILGI
“Go, Werna! Get out of here please!”

Werna tries to go back for her friends before Billy stops her.

BILLY
“No, Werna! They’re both right! Come on, we’ve got to get out of here!”

WERNA
(protests) “But my friends!”

BILLY
“I know, Werna! Come on! Let’s go!”

Billy takes Werna with him, as they make their way out to escape from the River Manipulator Room. The Melkurs chase after them.

MELKURS
(in unison; menacingly) “You cannot escape from us! We are the Melkurs! No-one escapes from us!”


SCENE #102 – INT – CORRIDOR, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
In the corridor outside the River Manipulator Room, Billy and Werna run down it as they are being chased by Melkurs.

BILLY
“We must find a place to hide! Somewhere to avoid those Melkurs chasing us and spotting us!”

WERNA
“We must go back for Saloga and Milgi! They’ll die if we don’t help…”

BILLY
“There’s nothing we can do for them at the moment, Werna!” (realises) “Ah! Here we are! This will do nicely!”

WERNA
“This gap in the wall? That’s where Saloga; Milgi and I sometimes hide.”

BILLY
“Quick! Get in, Werna! Inside!”

Billy and Werna get inside the gap in the wall before any Melkurs come walking down the corridor. They try to stay silent, as a couple of Melkurs walk down the corridor past their hiding place. They stop for a moment. Moment of silence ensues. Eventually, the Melkurs continue walking onwards, as they search for their fugitives. Billy and Werna wait as the Melkurs go further down the corridor. Eventually, they sigh with relief.

BILLY
“Thank goodness they didn’t find us.”

WERNA
“We must move on from here! Save Saloga and Milgi!”

BILLY
“No. We’ll wait for a few minutes. Make sure no Melkurs walk down this corridor once we go out. We’ve got to find another hiding place or something. Perhaps one of those tunnels will help.”

WERNA
“And what do we do when we get inside one of those tunnels, Billy? Answer me that!”

BILLY
“I don’t know, Werna. I don’t know.” (Pause) “I wonder what’s become of Nyssa and the Doctor.”


SCENE #103 – INT – INDUCTION CHAMBER, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
Meanwhile, in the Induction Chamber, the Doctor and Nyssa continue attempting to reverse the process of Morguth’s manifestation on Riverloth.

NYSSA
“How’s it going with reversing the process on Morguth, Doctor?”

DOCTOR
“Please, Nyssa! I’m trying to concentrate! This is slow work here.”

NYSSA
“Well, perhaps I can help Doctor. Perhaps I can check on the flow-back inducers on this induction matrix…”

Just then, the Doctor and Nyssa get a shock as Melkurs materialise out of nowhere in the Induction Chamber.

DOCTOR
“Melkurs! In the Induction Chamber! Nyssa, you said…”

NYSSA
“I’m sure there weren’t any Melkurs outside when I locked the door! They must have come in here by stealth!”

DOCTOR
“We’ve got to get out of here!”

NYSSA
“There’s too many of them…”

DOCTOR
“Come on, Nyssa! Quickly, run!”

The Doctor and Nyssa try to make a run for it out of the Induction Chamber. They are instantly caught and manhandled by the Melkurs, as they cry out in pain.

NYSSA
(cries; in pain) “Doctor! One of the Melkurs has got me!”

DOCTOR
(cries; in pain) “Me too! I can’t…get free of this Melkur’s grip.”

NYSSA
(cries; in pain) “The Melkurs are strong! And that’s not because they’re made of stone! They’re robots, remember?”

MELKURS
(in unison; menacingly) “You cannot escape from us! We are the Melkurs! No-one escapes from us!”

DOCTOR
(wryly; in pain) “How very reassuring to hear that!”

As the Doctor and Nyssa struggle to break free from the Melkurs’ grip, Morguth appears out of thin air too. He walks over towards the Doctor and Nyssa. He laughs out loud menacingly and mockingly at them.

MORGUTH
(laughs) “So…we meet ‘again’, Doctor! I’m so glad my Melkurs were able to catch you! Unlike the Fosters on Riverloth who are so incompetent! My strategy in capturing you worked out so well, didn’t it?”

DOCTOR
“So, your attack on us at Rondus’ house was just a scare. To ward us off the real trap. I should have guessed.”

NYSSA
“How did your Melkurs manage to get into the Induction Chamber so quickly, Morguth? They weren’t outside the doors when I locked them.”

MORGUTH
(proudly) “The Melkur spirits have complete control of their robotic forms. Just like me, they can fit in anywhere. Materialise anywhere. Just like your TARDIS can do that, Doctor. Even the Master’s TARDIS when it was disguised as one of Malador’s children on Traken, Nyssa.”

NYSSA
(protests) “The Melkurs are simply calcified stone statues, Morguth!”

DOCTOR
(protests) “And robots aren’t TARDISes, Morguth! We heard no whooshing trumpeting sound like my TARDIS does when they arrived.”

MORGUTH
“The children of Malador are far more capable than you can imagine, Doctor. Even you, Nyssa. Your people were so blind to the Melkurs’ capabilities on Traken. Even they didn’t see the potential they could do.”

NYSSA
“I don’t wish to know.”

MORGUTH
“It does not matter now, because I have already won. My Melkurs were able to appear, just as I was able to appear. I can make your lives such a misery as I want to.”

DOCTOR
“Please, Morguth! Don’t torture us whatever you do!”

MORGUTH
“What? Like this!”

Nyssa then cries out loudly in pain, as the Melkur holding her releases her and she stumbles to the floor on her knees.

DOCTOR
(panics; concerned) “Nyssa?! Nyssa, what’s wrong?”

NYSSA
(in pain) “My head! I feel a burning! Inside my head! He’s giving me a headache! Like before! When I felt his presence!”

DOCTOR
(angrily; to Morguth) “Stop it, Morguth! Leave Nyssa alone!”

MORGUTH
(maliciously) “This is a demonstration of my power, Doctor! I can see through Nyssa’s mind as I cause her pain. I know her darkest thoughts. I know what makes her weak! I know what makes her vulnerable!”

NYSSA
(defiantly) “You know nothing about me, Morguth!”

MORGUTH
(challengingly) “No! Even when I see in your mind your horror at watching the destruction of Traken by the entropy field. And that was the Doctor’s fault! I know how the Psychodrome tried to expose your fears to your friends and make them real. But I can do so much more.”

NYSSA
(defiantly) “I don’t believe you!”

MORGUTH
(maliciously) “You still suffer for the deaths of your beloved father Tremas and of Adric! You feel empty with the loss of company with your good friend Tegan. You feel regret at your decision to leave Andrew in Stockbridge when you were in love with him.”

NYSSA
(resists) “That’s enough!”

MORGUTH
(maliciously) “And worse of all! You fear Billy will never fulfil your expectations! You…and the Doctor…doubt him!”

NYSSA
(cries) “Get out of my head!”

DOCTOR
“You heard her, Morguth! Let Nyssa go!”

Eventually, Morguth frees Nyssa, as she collapses to the floor. The Doctor checks on Nyssa whilst she’s on the floor.

DOCTOR
(concerned) “Nyssa, are you alright?”

NYSSA
(disorientated; vulnerable) “My head. It’s swimming. I feel so weak, Doctor. He’s got such a powerful mind. He probed inside my head. He’s too powerful for me, Doctor!”

DOCTOR
“It’s alright, Nyssa. It’ll be okay. Come on. Let me help you up.”

The Doctor helps Nyssa up from the floor, as they both face Morguth.

MORGUTH
“Your fate has already been decided, Doctor; Nyssa. Both of you shall add to the power of my mind. For my altar and cognitive aggrandizer array to the Tree. You shall be put in induction cubicles within this Induction Chamber!”

DOCTOR
(pleads) “No, Morguth! Not Nyssa! Spare her life! My mind is far more powerful than hers. I’m a Time Lord, she’s a Trakenite! Just use me and not Nyssa! Please, Morguth!”

MORGUTH
(ignores Doctor; to Melkurs) “Melkurs! Restrain the Doctor and Nyssa! Have them put into the induction cubicles at my command!”

MELKURS
(in unison) “We hear and obey, our master Morguth! We hear and obey!”

The Doctor and Nyssa get manhandled by the Melkurs again, as they struggle to break free.


SCENE #104 – INT – CORRIDOR, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
With Billy and Werna, they come out of hiding and walk down the corridor cautiously. It is quiet in the corridor, but there is an uneasy atmosphere.

BILLY
“Now, Werna? Where is this tunnel that you, Saloga and Milgi usually go to in this corridor of the building? Along one of these walls is it?”

WERNA
(agitated) “Oh these walls look the same to me! What does it matter?”

BILLY
(calmly; reassuringly) “Werna, I know you’re distressed about Saloga and Milgi being captured. I’m worried about the Doctor and Nyssa too. But if we just keep our heads together, we may have a chance of finding and rescuing them.”

WERNA
(shaken) “Yes. Sorry, Billy. I’m just distressed the Melkurs came about unexpectedly when we were in the River Manipulator Room. We didn’t get a chance to do what we wanted with disabling the River Manipulator.”

BILLY
“Don’t worry, Werna. I’m sure the opportunity will arise again when we come to disabling the River Manipulator. Now if we can just find that tunnel in the wall we’re looking for.”

WERNA
(realises) “There it is, Billy! On your right, there!”

Billy goes over to the wall that Werna points at for him.

BILLY
“What this lid here?”

WERNA
“Yes! That’s the lid to open the tunnel for us to get inside.”

Billy tugs at the lid in the wall. The lid swings open to reveal the dark cavity inside.

BILLY
“Oh yes! So it is! Then we get in here and crawl our way through the tunnel, hey?”

WERNA
“What had you in mind to do on where to go inside the tunnel, Billy?”

BILLY
“At the moment, I’m not sure. But I want to get out of this corridor to avoid any of those Melkur statues chasing after us, right?”

WERNA
“Right you are, Billy.”

BILLY
“Good. Let’s get inside then. Werna, you first!”

Werna gets inside the tunnel, as she climbs and crawls her way through. Billy eventually follows in after her, as he gets inside the tunnel and crawls through it.


SCENE #105 – INT – TUNNEL, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
Inside the tunnel, Billy and Werna crawl their way through.

WERNA
“Now we’re inside and out of harm’s way from those Melkurs, are you clearer on where to go, Billy?”

BILLY
“We must get to the Induction Chamber. See what’s become of the Doctor and Nyssa and whether we can do anything to help them should those Melkurs have got them.”

WERNA
“You think the Melkurs have got the Doctor and Nyssa as well, do you?”

BILLY
“It seems that what happened to us, Saloga and Milgi in the River Manipulator Room with the Melkurs seems to have also happened to the Doctor and Nyssa. The Melkurs came out as a surprise when we were in the River Manipulator Room. Why shouldn’t they have done the same for Nyssa and the Doctor in the Induction Chamber?”

WERNA
“You seem to have worked that one out pretty well, Billy?”

BILLY
“It just came to me. I think it’s an affect the Doctor and Nyssa have on me. When they work things out. And I haven’t known them very long.”

Moment of silence, as the two keep on crawling through the tunnel.

WERNA
(gradually) “There is a way we can get to the Induction Chamber whilst we’re in this tunnel, Billy.”

BILLY
“Really?”

WERNA
“Yes! It’ll mean having to go underground though. And I know the way to find the hatch that will get us down below in this tunnel.”

BILLY
“Then you’d better lead the way, Werna. Crawl ahead of me!”

WERNA
“Come on! This way!”

Billy follows Werna, as she leads the way crawling through the tunnel.


SCENE #106 – INT – TUNNEL, RIVERLOTH – DAY, EVENING
Later on, Werna and Billy have got down underground in the tunnel, as they crawl their way towards where the Induction Chamber is.

WERNA
“Here we are, Billy! Down underground!”

BILLY
“You certainly know your way around this maze of tunnels, don’t you Werna? You must have done this pretty often.”

WERNA
“Once or twice. Come on! Down this way!”

Werna leads on, as she and Billy crawl further into the tunnel to find their way to the Induction Chamber. Eventually…

WERNA
(triumphantly) “Here! Here we are, Billy!”

BILLY
“What? What is it?” (realises) “Hey! I see a light up ahead!”

WERNA
“It’s a window! A window overlooking the Induction Chamber. I remember seeing this when me, Saloga and Milgi came down this way in the tunnel. We can see what’s going on inside from here.”

Werna and Billy reach the window in the tunnel and begin to look through to see what’s going on in the Induction Chamber.

WERNA
“Here we are! Yes, this is the Induction Chamber alright.” (realises; disturbed) “Hold on. I can see Melkurs in this place! And Morguth!”

BILLY
“And there’s the Doctor and Nyssa. I can see them too.” (puzzled) “What are they doing in there anyway? They look like they’re being put into some kind of cubicles.”

WERNA
“Oh no! Oh please no, it can’t be!”

BILLY
“What? What is it, Werna?”

WERNA
“Your friends are being put into the induction chambers! That’s what those victims called tributes were put into when having their body water and life-force drained by Sarumane for Morguth to manifest himself.”

BILLY
(shocked) “What?! You don’t mean that…”

WERNA
(anxiously) “Yes! I fear so, Billy. Your friends, the Doctor and Nyssa…are about to have their water particles and life-force drained out of them! By Morguth and his minions.”

BILLY
(panics) “Oh no! Oh please no!”

Billy and Werna watch, as they see the Doctor and Nyssa being put into the induction cubicles.


© Tim Bradley, 2016

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2 thoughts on “‘The Tree of Riverloth’, Part Three, Chapter 11

  1. This is what I’m talking about, the character drama, Tim you have written one of the most subtle heartwarming moments in this chapter were Billy wishes he was Superman, these small moments add so much depth into characters & this scene alone was perfect.

    Was Darth Vader a influence on Morguth? He certainly likes to torture people cruelly, the scene were he’s mentally torturing Nyssa & exposes her secrets was shocking & gave me goosebumps due to the fact at how strongly you wrote it, this is why your a excellent writer you allow the reader to experience the characters pain & create such wonderful nail biting drama.

    11 chapters in & not once has this story sagged in pace, in fact it’s getting more & more exciting as each chapter unfolds.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Simon.

    I’m very pleased you enjoyed that first scene between Nyssa and Billy, especially when Billy was talking about wanting to be Superman. I enjoyed writing that scene, especially in those moments when Nyssa encourages Billy to stay on in the TARDIS. I’m glad you enjoyed the character drama from that scene.

    I can’t say Darth Vadar was an influence on Morguth as I’m not really a ‘Star Wars’ fan. The influences on Morguth were an amalgamation of the Master, Kwaundaar from ‘Primeval’ and Malador from ‘The Guardians of Prophecy.

    I’m glad I gave you goosebumps with Nyssa being tortured mentally by Morguth. It was trying to emphasis the threat and menace of Morguth’s character as a malicious dark god from Traken’s dark time, and I’m glad that worked out well for you. Of course I wouldn’t want to harm Nyssa so much, but when you care about characters like that you need to have the audience react in that way when she’s in trouble or suffering pain and I’m pleased you approved of that in this chapter.

    I’m so glad you’re finding the story more interesting as you go through each chapter and you’re not finding the story sagging in places. Many thanks for your kind comments on my stories, Simon. I hope you enjoy the rest of this story.

    Look forward to hearing from you in the next chapter.

    Tim. 🙂

    Like

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