Serpent Crest part one - Tsar Wars, by Paul Magrs

A BBC Audio Books Drama, released 8 September 2011

(Transcriber's notes - This story carried directly on from Sepulchre. Also, the Servo robots sound pretty much identical. The numbering is just guesswork and deduction on my part. Would the author perhaps care to make the necessary corrections?)

WIBBSEY [OC]: (singing) Lord Jesus, laid down his sweet head. (continues under dialogue)
MIKE: Listen. Mrs Wibbsey's singing. She even sounds happy.
DOCTOR: Oh, wonders will never cease. Sherry, Doctor? All right, Doctor, I don't mind if I do, Doctor. Just a small one.
WIBBSEY [OC]: The little Lord Jesus asleep
(Knocking on door.)
MIKE: Who on Earth can that be Christmas Eve?
WIBBSEY [OC]: I'll answer it.
DOCTOR: Fifty P it's some proper carol singers.
WIBBSEY [OC]: Oh my. Oh, good gracious. Oh dear.
MIKE: Doesn't seem to be. Come and look through the window.
WIBBSEY [OC]: Doctor, come quickly! You'll never believe it.
DOCTOR: Oh, no.
MIKE: Here we go again!
WIBBSEY [OC]: Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
(Breaking glass.)
DOCTOR: Good heavens.
(A robotic voice speaks incomprehensible words.)
DOCTOR: Get back. This is an intolerable outrage. Armed robbers bursting into a fellow's house on Christmas Eve. Are you all right, Wibbs?
WIBBSEY: Just bruised, I think. There was no need to shove like that.
SERVO53: Remain silent.
WIBBSEY: They've knocked Mister Yates unconscious.
DOCTOR: They clearly mean business. May I ask why you charming gentlerobots are paying us this unexpected visit?
WIBBSEY: Here, are you from the village? Are you Daphne Wotsit's nephews? The fancy dress shop in Codlington got ram-raided last week.
SERVO53: This female is insensible. She's not part of our programme. Seize the objective and scan him.
DOCTOR: The only objective I answer to is Doctor.
SERVO96: Its physiognomy is correct.
WIBBSEY: What does he mean, your physiognomy?
DOCTOR: (sotto) It means he likes my face, Wibbs.
SERVO53: You will relinquish yourselves into our custody.
DOCTOR: That's a trifle strong..
WIBBSEY: If you want him, you'll have to take me as well.
DOCTOR: Don't be silly, Wibbsey.
WIBBSEY: Where he goes, I go. I'm his personal nurse. He needs my attention at all times.
DOCTOR: You really have gained a taste for derring-do, haven't you.
SERVO53: Seize them. Render them unconscious if necessary.
DOCTOR: Look, whatever's going on here, we deserve to be informed. You can't just drag us into the street.
WIBBSEY: I've got a goose in the oven!
DOCTOR: Really, Wibbsey?
SERVO53: You are now prisoners of the Robotov Empire.
DOCTOR: Never heard of it.
SERVO53: You will come with us.
WIBBSEY: But we can't leave Mister Yates just lying there in front of the fireplace.
DOCTOR: He'll be all right. Look, he's coming round. That's it, Mike, at the double. Remember to turn the oven off, there's a good chap.
(Stomping and whooshing.)
WIBBSEY: You're not just going to let them take us, are you, Doctor?
DOCTOR: I don't think we have much choice, Mrs Wibbsey. You heard what that metal gent said. You and I are prisoners of the Robotovs.

(The whoosh arrives from a long way away, with a lot of oos and ahs.)
DOCTOR: Goodness, what a way to travel.
WIBBSEY: It was like being sucked up the vacuum cleaner.
SERVO53: Course malfunction. This is the Autumn Palace.
SERVO96: Power depleting. Wormhole critical. Power too unstable for retransfer.
SERVO53: Very well. Close the portal on my command. Now.
SERVO96: It is done.
DOCTOR: (sotto) They're using wormhole technology.
WIBBSEY: So I heard. Is that bad?
DOCTOR: Well, without the correct shielding, it can be highly unstable. An over-utilised wormhole can do untold damage to the Space-Time Vortex.
WIBBSEY: You don't say.
SERVO53: Requesting procedure instructions from bio-moon.
DOCTOR: What's that?
SERVO53: Secure prisoners in secret location until secondary plan is devised.
SERVO96: Affirmative.
DOCTOR: Are you nauseous, Mrs Wibbsey?
WIBBSEY: As a matter of fact, I feel as sick as a parrot.
DOCTOR: Here, have a barley sugar. They've got no right to drag innocent prisoners halfway across the cosmos in something so unstable. You, yes, you, I'm talking about you.
SERVO96: Prisoners will not address the Robotov Guard. You will remain silent.
DOCTOR: (sotto) I think they've hit a snag. We're not where they wanted us to be.
SERVO96: You will be incarcerated for the present time.
WIBBSEY: Oh Lor', I don't like the sound of this. Did you really mean halfway across the cosmos, Doctor?
DOCTOR: I lost track after a while, but we're a very long way from home.
SERVO53: Nurse functionary, ensure the objective is medicated to the necessary levels.
WIBBSEY: What? Oh, oh yes, I will.
DOCTOR: What's that?
WIBBSEY: Quiet now, Doctor. It'll be time for your tablets soon.
SERVO53: You will come with us.
DOCTOR: Thrilling conversationalists, aren't they? Well, that's robots for you. With a few honourable exceptions, of course.
(Lots of stomping and hydraulics with a few beeps.)
WIBBSEY: How could we get away from here without the Tardis? I can't say I'm keen on travelling via that wormhole thingy again, even to go home. You've already said how dangerous it is.
DOCTOR: I meant it. They could smash half the cosmos into smithereens if they don't know what they're doing with it. Harnessing the power of such a natural phenomenon is far from child's play. Only certain races have the capability.
SERVO53: Prisoners will be silent.
DOCTOR: Have I complimented the décor yet? Very baroque, I'd say. Very baroque. Something of a nod to Earth culture, if I'm not mistaken. Have you got human masters, by any chance?
SERVO53: Blasphemy will be severely punished.
DOCTOR: Oh, I'm sorry. Yes, which word is forbidden, servants or human?
SERVO53: Silence.
WIBBSEY: Doctor, don't rile them.
DOCTOR: Bah, humourless lot.
(Hydraulic stomping continues.)

(Ringing alarm.)
BOOLIN: Oh no, his heart's failing. Servo 5-3.
SERVO53 [OC]: Yes, Physician Boolin.
BOOLIN: The Tsarina is on her way to see her son for the usual afternoon visit. Please, delay her. She mustn't see him like this.
SERVO53 [OC]: Yes, Physician Boolin.
BOOLIN: Please pull through, little Prince. So many lives depend upon your survival. If I fail, their Highnesses will have me disassembled. You can't die now.

(Hydraulic stomping stops.)
SERVO96: Royal escort reports Tsarina on course to Medical Wing. Her course likely to intercept our own.
SERVO53: Take evasive action. Returning to base.
WIBBSEY: He's vanished!
SERVO96: Prisoners will continue. Increase speed.
DOCTOR: About to meet royalty, are we? Where's your chum gone?
SERVO96: Prisoners will remain silent in the Royal Presence.
TSARINA: Servo 9-6, what are you doing in this sector? Who are these, oh!
DOCTOR: Hello there.
SERVO96: Silence in the presence of her holy and integral majesty.
TSARINA: You are here.
DOCTOR: Yes, yes indeed. Quite a bumpy ride, as it happens. Not quite what we were expecting, but here we are. And this is Mrs Wibbsey, by the way.
WIBBSEY: How'd you do
TSARINA: Father, you've come back to us.
WIBBSEY: Father?
TSARINA: Retinue dismissed.
ROBOT: Your Highness.
TSARINA: I said, dismissed. All of you. That includes you, Servo 9-6. Go, immediately. Leave us.
SERVO96: Affirmative.
(Hydraulic stomping.)
DOCTOR: Toodle-pip. (laughs)
WIBBSEY: Glad to see the back of them. Thank you, your Highness.
TSARINA: I can't tell you how glad I am to see you. Yet you are much changed.
TSARINA: Yes. Changed and yet very much the same.
DOCTOR: Well, for one thing
TSARINA: I told Boolin, I told them all, only one doctor can save my son, and that is you.
DOCTOR: Well, it's very nice to be welcomed at last. All we've received so far is rough treatment.
TSARINA: You will understand if your presence here is ill-received by some. After everything that's happened, your good reputation is far from assured.
DOCTOR: Oh, I'm sorry to hear that.
TSARINA: But this is propitious timing. You are heaven sent, my wonderful man, and there is not a moment to lose. Come at once. Follow me to the Medical Wing.
WIBBSEY: What do we do now?
DOCTOR: Go with her, of course.
WIBBSEY: Here, did she call you father? Have you been
DOCTOR: I have no idea. Fascinating though, isn't it?

TSARINA: Boolin, he is worse. For all your meddling and supposed care, you have made him worse.
BOOLIN: Tsarina, your Highness, we are doing what we can. I hoped to spare you the sight of him like this.
TSARINA: Boolin, I am sorry. I know you have worked long and dutifully, and done all you can. But all along I said there was just one hope for my son, and now he is here. Come in, Father.
DOCTOR: Goodness, quite a little hospital you have here.
BOOLIN: No, it can't be.
WIBBSEY: Oh look, Doctor. He's just a toddler.
DOCTOR: Let's see now. What's going on here?
TSARINA: Alex has been critically ill for weeks, Father. He weakens every day, but I had no way of contacting you. The Tsar insisted that you had deserted us all.
DOCTOR: Mmm. What's wrong with him, Boolin?
BOOLIN: His heart is failing. Only the life-support circuitry is keeping him alive.
TSARINA: Unable to support himself at just three years old. I could almost weep for pity.
WIBBSEY: Hush, there now. I'm sure the Doctor will do what he can.
DOCTOR: I'm not at all sure I can actually save the child. Mrs Wibbsey, hold my coat, will you? Now, let's have a look. Is the heart diseased?
BOOLIN: What is diseased?
DOCTOR: You know, sick, weak.
BOOLIN: Diagnostics reveal the organic element is being rejected by the robotic.
DOCTOR: Ah, the organic element. Now I understand.
WIBBSEY: What is it, Doctor?
DOCTOR: The child is a cyborg, Mrs Wibbsey. Look, metal limbs like callipers, engineered to expand and grow along with his human body parts. Half organic, half robotic. But the organic part is failing and dying.
WIBBSEY: Poor little mite. He looks so constricted in all that metal.
DOCTOR: Tell me, Boolin, have you tried haemo-concentration to bolster his red blood cells, or attempted cardioplegia through freezing the organic component?
BOOLIN: Yes, and more. The simple fact remains that the mechanical part of the child is continually rejecting the human. You must find great irony in the situation, Father Gregory, given your political leanings.
(Ha! Father Gregori Rasputin, favourite of the Tsarina and played by Tom Baker in Nicholas and Alexandra, 1971. So, for Boolin read Doctor Botkin in real life.)
TSARINA: Boolin, there will be time for that later.
DOCTOR: Hmm. Now everyone stand back. Let the dog see the rabbit. Your Highness, would you mind stepping away?
TSARINA: Please save my son, Father Gregory. The future of our whole empire rests on his small shoulders.
DOCTOR: It's been a long time since I put my biomechanical training into practical use, but I'll have a go. Boolin, this is what I'll need.

TSARINA: Hush, Alex, hush.
DOCTOR: The coolant valves have been ruptured. His heart is overheating, which may be the prime cause for the rejection.
BOOLIN: Can it be repaired?
DOCTOR: I'm not sure.
TSARINA: Father Gregory has the divine touch. He will restore the living soul to my son.
BOOLIN: I hope so, your Highness. But have you wondered why he has returned to us?
TSARINA: Who cares for now? I am just delighted he is here to save us all. For the moment, Boolin, do not tell my husband.

DOCTOR: It's done.
BOOLIN: You, you've saved him?
TSARINA: Oh, you genius. You wonderful man.
DOCTOR: I've done the best I can. I've fixed the valves and dampened the autoimmune reaction. The heart rhythm has returned to relatively normal.
WIBBSEY: Well done, Doctor.
DOCTOR: I've no idea how long it'll last. I'm afraid I can't work miracles.
TSARINA: But you do, Father Gregory. Now please, come with me. There is much to discuss. A lot has happened since you were last here.
DOCTOR: All right. Come on, Wibbs.
TSARINA: No, Father. For the moment, just you. Like old times.
DOCTOR: I see. Mrs Wibbsey, wait for me here.
WIBBSEY: Yes, Doctor.
(Door slides open.)
BOOLIN: Alex seems stable for now.. I'd better clear this equipment up.
(Door slides closed.)
WIBBSEY: Sorry, I'm in the way, aren't I?
BOOLIN: No, please, you're welcome to remain. I will be forever in the Father's debt for what he has done tonight.
WIBBSEY: Have you been looking after the boy for long?
BOOLIN: Since his first days. I am his personal physician. His survival is my responsibility. I don't mind admitting, just lately I've felt his life slipping out of my grasp.
WIBBSEY: The Doctor often turns up at more or less the right moment.
BOOLIN: You call him the Doctor. Surely he hasn't renounced his, how do you say it, religious calling these days?
WIBBSEY: Er, well, er, you see, Boolin, I think you and the Tsarina are under a misapprehension.
BOOLIN: I suspected as much. So the rumours are true. Not only has he altered his appearance, but also his outlook. He has finally lost his beneficence towards my kind. Do you know, he was the only human ever to dine at the Royal Robotov table, and yet ultimately he is the only one to betray us all.
WIBBSEY: When you say the only human
BOOLIN: We were once proud to accept him among us.
WIBBSEY: But surely, you're human, aren't you?
BOOLIN: It is kind of you to humour me, but being human is not something we Robotovs aspire to.
WIBBSEY: Robotovs? You mean you're all robots?
BOOLIN: Affirmative.
WIBBSEY: I can't take it in. You're so (pause) life-like, for a mechanical man. The Doctor called Alex a cyborg, didn't he?
BOOLIN: Indeed. The Tsar and Tsarina's son and heir is a cyborg. But the rest of us are wholly and integral Robotov. But you must know all of this. Which work satellite did you meet Father Gregory on?
WIBBSEY: Er, Cromer.
BOOLIN: That's not one I have heard of. He was always drawn towards the human workforce on the satellite worlds, naturally enough, as they are his own kin, but never did we imagine he would try to turn them against us. Is it true that he has amassed a rebel force?
WIBBSEY: I'm afraid I don't know what you're talking about.
BOOLIN: Your circumspection does you credit. All I ask is that you do us no harm whilst you are our guests here.
WIBBSEY: Of course not! If anyone was going to do harm, it was those guards who brought us here. Now they certainly don't seem human, but you, and the Tsarina, I'd never know you weren't real.
BOOLIN: Although humans service the empire in their work on the satellite planets and our generator moons, it has always been deemed appropriate to have a Servo class of robots supporting the ruling elite here in the Palace.
WIBBSEY: And you don't bother dressing them up like people?
BOOLIN: Servos are not accorded the same cosmetic and personal characteristics as the Royal Family and its retinue.
WIBBSEY: Oh, I don't think I could stay around them for too long. They give me the creeps.
BOOLIN: You will be served by them at dinner tonight, and if the Tsar is in a jubilant mood at the saving of his son, I would not be surprised if you too were invited to the Royal table with Father Gregory.
WIBBSEY: Oh, goodness. I think I'll let the Doctor do the talking. Best all round. He doesn't seem to be able to do any wrong here.
BOOLIN: In the olden days, Father Gregory was always a palace favourite.
WIBBSEY: Er, I don't know if I'm speaking out of turn here, but you do know he isn't really this Father Gregory, don't you?
BOOLIN: Is this what we know as human sense of humour? I believe the correct response is ah, ah, ah.
WIBBSEY: I'm not trying to be funny.
BOOLIN: Father Gregory's return couldn't have been better timed. Only he could save the heir to the empire, and only he can stop this coming war.
WIBBSEY: Oh, Doctor, whatever have you walked into this time?

(Chatter of voices.)
DOCTOR: Ah, dinner is served. We seem to be quite a hit, don't we, Mrs Wibbsey?
WIBBSEY: You are.
WIBBSEY: They all think you're some sort of miracle worker.
DOCTOR: Yes. Now, just do as they do, and pretend to eat the food.
WIBBSEY: But it all looks so delicious.
DOCTOR: Fake, I'm afraid. It's all made out of Capodimonte or something. Androids don't need to eat, you see. This whole banquet appears to be a fascinating emulation of something in their past.
WIBBSEY: You're kidding.
DOCTOR: I'm not. And I'll tell you something else, Wibbs. According to the Tsarina, this whole Palace is built on a floating platform in space, constructed especially to house the Robotov ruling class. These poor devils don't even have a planet to call their own. Watch out. Here's the Tsar.
(Played by Michael Jayston, who was also the Tsar in Nicholas and Alexandra.)
TSAR: My lords and ladies of the Holy and Integral Robotov Empire, I never thought I would hear myself say these words again, but for this night only, let us drink a toast in honour of our son and heir's saviour, Father Gregory.
ALL + DOCTOR: Father Gregory.
WIBBSEY: Oh, there's nothing in these goblets but dust!
TSAR: Father, a response, please.
DOCTOR: Oh, really, it was nothing. I was just lending a hand, as usual. (laughs) Trying to be of some help, you know.
TSARINA: Father Gregory is too modest. Has he forgotten how vital he once was to us here in the Autumn Palace?
TSAR: I am sure he is merely
TSARINA: Since his departure, nothing here has been right. Ever since that day, the Robotovs have had no human prism through which to see themselves, and for that we are the poorer.
TSAR: My beloved wife is as inappropriately emotional as ever, Father Gregory, but she is mistaken. All is well here. We have survived without you. Indeed, I would venture to say we have grown stronger, not least of all in our surveillance of neighbouring planets such as the bio-moon.
DOCTOR: I'm glad to hear you're managing without me. Do I detect some antagonism between robots and humans?
TSARINA: You are perceptive, Father. My husband forgets that only this week we took casualties on the fuel run from the bio-moon, thanks to a raid by parties unknown. That just a month ago, two of our Servo robots were absent without explanation for days, only to be discovered deactivated in the East Wing airlock. Since then they have been erratic, behaving mysteriously, as if of their own accord. Human rebellion is suspected. These are strange and unnerving times.
TSAR: My wife, I forbid you to speak of these local matters.
DOCTOR: But surely you are descended from human creations?
TSAR: We are our own people.
DOCTOR: I don't doubt it, but you can't possibly have invented yourselves. Apart from anything else, your physical appearance, and all these nods around the place to old Earth culture make it obvious that you were once of human serving stock.
TSAR: That was centuries ago. The Robotovs overthrew their masters, and became the dominant race in this sector of the galaxy.
DOCTOR: Allowing humans to co-exist as a worker class, is that right? Lower even than your own Servo robots?
TSAR: The situation has been peaceful for hundreds of years, until you came along, Father Gregory, and stirred up trouble from within our very own walls.
TSARINA: Please, take no heed, holy Father. My husband has been driven to paranoia, understandably, both by recent events and by your apparent absconding. But all of that will change now that you are among us again.
DOCTOR: It will?
TSARINA: Another toast. To a returned and trustworthy friend.
(Cries of hear, hear and hurrah.)
WIBBSEY: If you're not careful, Doctor, you're going to wind up in the Tower, with hubby over there turning the key and eating it.

SERVO1: Incoming data suggests unlawful incursions.
SERVO2: The transduction shields are down. Sabotage is suspected.
SERVO1: Life readings. Humanoid life forms detected on platform quadrant eight beta, advancing on the Palace.
SERVO2: It can only be the human rebels. They have chosen this night of celebration to make their move. Move to full alert.
(Alarms sound.)
SERVO2: Guards have been despatched.
SERVO1: Too late. Platform integrity breached. The Autumn Palace is under siege.

DOCTOR: Please, you really must call me Doctor. I can't stand all of this bowing and scraping.
TSARINA: Father Gregory, you were never one to stand on ceremony, but this insistence on a change of name, the smoothness of your chin, your altered apparel, even your voice, I must confess it is most strange.
WIBBSEY: Yes, well, there's good reason for that.
DOCTOR: All things must change, your Highness.
TSAR: And mere flesh and blood can be the weakest of vessels, prone to falling under the strangest of influences.
TSARINA: Hush, husband. Father, why have you returned to us this day? Is it, as I have hoped, that you have come to save us all?
TSAR: We do not need saving.
TSARINA: Is it to put right everything that is weakened and ailing in the Robotov Empire? Have you come to rekindle your friendships of old?
DOCTOR: I'm afraid not, Tsarina. We were brought here by your guards. Even we don't know why.
TSAR: By our guards? You have the temerity to suggest I would have commanded them to seek out and find you?
TSARINA: Not even the ailing health of your own son would persuade you to do that, would it, husband.
TSAR: Your own son, wife.
DOCTOR: Please, Mrs Wibbsey and I don't mean to cause a domestic dispute. Our escorts here seemed to think I was somebody else too. Perhaps Servo 9-6 here can shed some light on it.
(Alarms sound.)
TSAR: By the Serpent!
DOCTOR: What is it?
TSARINA: Husband, what is happening?
TSAR: Incursion. More human scum agitating at our door.
WIBBSEY: Haven't you got any defences?
TSARINA: The Palace was built in a time of peace, not war. Until the recent rebel unrest, there has always been harmony between Robotovs and humans.
DOCTOR: Don't you mean between servants and masters? A society built on those foundations is bound to suffer subsidence eventually, yes, and your pretty rococo walls will come tumbling down.
(Rumble, small things breaking.)
WIBBSEY: Oh, Doctor, we've got to do something.
DOCTOR: Your Royal Highness, I can see you are very scared of these people.
TSAR: We shall not admit them into the Palace. No more humans.
TSARINA: Father, Mrs Wibbsey, you must escape with the Royal party. We need you.
DOCTOR: Do you have anywhere in mind? What about the wormhole transporter?
TSAR: Wormhole transporter? What's he talking about, Servo 9-6?
SERVO96: His meaning is unintelligible.
DOCTOR: Now hang on a minute!
TSARINA: My husband at least had the foresight to make our private quarters impregnable. We will take refuge there.
WIBBSEY: But what about the others?
TSARINA: Alex must be saved. We must go now!
TSAR: Servo 9-6, collect my son and Physician Boolin from the Medical Wing and take them to our quarters.
SERVO96: Affirmative, your Royal Highness.
TSAR: Now, come at once. Our private retinue will bear us away.
TSARINA: Please, come quickly.
DOCTOR: It's all happening today, isn't it, Wibbs?

(Distant alarms and booms.)
TSAR: Now at last we can be safe. How is the boy?
BOOLIN: He is stable, your Highness, but still very weak.
SERVO96: Servo Defence reports heavy Robotov casualties.
TSAR: What!
TSARINA: We are going to die tonight, I know it.
TSAR: Hush, wife.
DOCTOR: Your Highnesses, perhaps I can talk to them. I have some experience with humans.
TSAR: Yes, you know the human rebels well, don't you. We can all imagine your negotiations.
WIBBSEY: What's he trying to say?
DOCTOR: (sotto) Something to do with Father Gregory.
BOOLIN: Your Highness, forgive me for saying so, but perhaps if he did speak with the humans?
TSAR: Silence. If this man is to speak with anyone, it is with me.
DOCTOR: Well, fire away. What shall we talk about? Music? Literature? Ornithology? Origami?
TSAR: You were on bio-moon, weren't you? Or Rebel Moon, as I understand you human scum have renamed it. Don't bother to deny it. I meant what I said about surveillance. You've been skulking up there for months, fomenting unrest.
TSARINA: I didn't now anything about this.
TSAR: You are hardly the most appropriate confidante I could have chosen. Too busy fretting over your sickly child. You've had no clue as to the wider political picture.
TSARINA: Without Alex alive, there is no wider politics for us. If he dies, so do all our hopes.
TSAR: So you insist. But someone had to take the longer view. Someone had to monitor the rebellion. My advisers and I have been keeping close watch on Gregory's location for a long time.
TSARINA: Then why didn't you call upon him when Alex was dying?
TSAR: Because I am the Head of State. I command the Robotov Empire. And not even your child
TSARINA: Our child.
TSAR: Not even your child is more important than the security of the Robotov future. No matter how much you two would like to sell us down the river to the humans. Perhaps you both drew up these plans together, to infiltrate and take over my palace.
WIBBSEY: What rubbish! The Doctor's done nothing but help you ever since we got here. We never asked to come here, you know.
DOCTOR: Your Highness, those explosions are getting distinctly nearer. The rudimentary reinforcement you've put around these quarters won't last for ever, you know. Now, it may have escaped your notice, but Mrs Wibbsey and I are inside here with you, and we're all going to go up in a big blue flash together if one of those grenades lands on top of us.
DOCTOR: So please, let me go out and talk to them. What other choice do you have, Highness?
TSAR: Very well. Talk to your fellow humans. But remember, the Royal Commander of the Robotovs will never bargain with primitive organics.
DOCTOR: (sighs) Servo 9-6, let me out.
(Door opens, alarms louder.)
WIBBSEY: I'm coming with you.
(Door closes.)
DOCTOR: Mrs Wibbsey, get back to safety.
WIBBSEY: You're not going anywhere without me. If there's one thing I've learned this past couple of years, it's to have you where I can see you.
DOCTOR: Get down!
WIBBSEY: Oh! Oh, that was a bit close.
DOCTOR: They've got some very flashy hardware. You could get yourself killed, you know, following me about.
WIBBSEY: I'm not hiding in there with a bunch of robots. They're like something off that film, Metropolis. Have you seen it?
DOCTOR: Seen it? I was in it. All right, come on then, you stubborn woman.
WIBBSEY: Look at all these mangled bodies. Thank goodness they're only robots.
DOCTOR: Only robots, Mrs Wibbsey? Our hosts would tell you they were as alive as we are.
WIBBSEY: But surely they're all just machines, aren't they? Just wind-up dolls.
DOCTOR: Apparently they're still capable of thinking, feeling even. In this sector of Space-Time, robo-technology has reached highly sophisticated levels.
WIBBSEY: Er, Doctor? I think we've found what we're looking for. Look up ahead. If they're not human, I'm a budgie's aunt. Scruffy lot, aren't they?
DOCTOR: Looks like they're regrouping. They haven't seen us yet.
WIBBSEY: Now be careful, they look a bit rough.
DOCTOR: (whistles) I say! Hello! Look here, you lot. You just can't go bursting into palaces shooting everybody like this. Some of those knick-knacks are priceless.
KANI: There he is. There's the objective. Seize him!
WIBBSEY: The objective. That's what the Servo robots called you.
DOCTOR: Not a name I'm fond of. Watch out, they're coming over.
KANI: You're coming with us.
DOCTOR: I can't do that. You see, I'm a bit busy right now.
KANI: Tarnak, Kier, take them by force. Bellis, Salvan, go ahead and make sure there's clear passage to the airlock. Radio the other parties and tell them to pull back. Return to base.
BELLIS: Yes, Kani.
WIBBSEY: Where do you want us to go?
KANI: The objective's required on Rebel Moon, and I'm sure we'll find a use for you. Now move it!
DOCTOR: Look here, you can't go man-handling Mrs Wibbsey like that.
KANI: If I were you, I'd shut up and relax.
WIBBSEY: We won't go without a fight, will we, Doctor.
DOCTOR: Er, actually, I'm quite intrigued to see this set-up of theirs on the moon. Got it nice up there, have you?
TARNAK: The transport's prepared, Kani.
WIBBSEY: There's that noise again. The wormhole.
KANI: Now just hold them steady, Tarnak.
BOOLIN: Doctor! Mrs Wibbsey!
DOCTOR: Get back, Boolin.
BOOLIN: I warn you, I am armed.
KANI: Don't let them slip away, Tarnak.
DOCTOR: We've no intention of slipping away. Mrs Wibbsey, hold onto me tight.
BOOLIN: Doctor, keep down.
DOCTOR: Boolin, no!
TARNAK: He is hit.
BOOLIN: Doctor, come on.
DOCTOR: No! Boolin!
(Whooshes as Mrs Wibbsey screams Nooo!)
BOOLIN; Where have they gone?
DOCTOR: You idiot.
BOOLIN: But I saved you.
DOCTOR: And let Mrs Wibbsey go! Forgive me if I don't thank you.
(Alarm stops.)
BOOLIN: The rebels have retreated. Power has been restored to the Autumn Palace.
DOCTOR: And I've lost a dear friend. I'd forgotten how single-minded you robots can be, and that's why you'll never rule over human beings for long, you know.
BOOLIN: Doctor, you are what humans describe as upset.
DOCTOR: Yes. I am. I've got to get after her. Wait a minute. Why are you calling me Doctor all of a sudden?
BOOLIN: Whoever you are, you must be careful. The Tsar is saying they only came here for you, that the whole attack was a set-up to get you away.
DOCTOR: Oh, he may be right.
TSARINA: Gregory. Father Gregory, I thought you'd been killed.
DOCTOR: I'm harder to get rid of than that.
TSARINA: To treat you like this after you had worked with them, tried to broker peace between us all.
DOCTOR: Tsarina, where is your husband?
TSARINA: He's with our son. Alex woke up during the last stages of the attack. He is pacified now.
DOCTOR: I must see the Tsar. Take me to him.
TSARINA: Very well.

DOCTOR: Your Highness, please, you must listen to me.
TSAR: I need not listen to anyone, let alone a traitor like you. I am the Tsar. My every word is Holy Writ.
DOCTOR: I never much cared for Holy Writ. I never believe in things that are set in stone.
BOOLIN: Highness, please. The Doctor, Father Gregory, has a plan.
TSAR: I'm sure he has.
DOCTOR: Highness, I don't know why everyone keeps mistaking me for Father Gregory, but I'm not him. My name is the Doctor, and I would like to help you. Now, I have no doubt that humans can be a shifty bunch, and for that very reason they are also very dangerous enemies.
TSAR: I have seen the atrocities committed on our kind by these creatures of flesh and blood. They would rather we were still mere machines to be bent to their wills.
DOCTOR: I can talk to them, persuade them that there is room for negotiation.
TSAR: Why would you do this for us? Is it for my wife's sake?
DOCTOR: I hardly know your wife.
TSAR: When you last lived here in the Autumn Palace, you and she were inseparable, and together you cooked up your little plan for the next stage in our supposed joint evolution.
DOCTOR: As I keep saying, I am not Father Gregory. What next stage in your evolution?
TSAR: I have no patience for this. You, sir, are as duplicitous as your rebel allies. Guards. Remove him from our sight.
BOOLIN: Please, your Highness, listen to him.
TSAR: Physician Boolin, you overstep the mark. You may have helped to keep my son alive, but you may not make demands of me. Now go!

(Door opens.)
SERVO71: Humanoid foodstuffs will be brought to you presently.
DOCTOR: Oh good. I'm rather peckish. The food at that banquet was terrible.
BOOLIN: You may seal me in, Servo 7-1. I wish to speak to the prisoner alone. I know the code to leave.
SERVO71: Affirmative.
(Door closes. Long pause.)
BOOLIN: I'm sorry, Doctor. We tried.
DOCTOR: Yes, and very little good we did. Mrs Wibbsey's still stuck on that moon place. What is it anyway, apart from a rebel stronghold?
BOOLIN: It is one of our generating moons. It creates energy for the Empire.
DOCTOR: And it's manned by humans who now have turned nasty, led by Father Gregory.
BOOLIN: According to the Tsar. I must go soon. I have duties to perform.
DOCTOR: Boolin, you believe I'm not Father Gregory, don't you?
BOOLIN: Yes. Mrs Wibbsey tried to say as much from the outset. She has an honest personality.
DOCTOR: You're absolutely right, and I'm terribly worried about her. Will you help me to get out of here?
BOOLIN: To do so would be an act of suicide on my part. The Tsar would have me dismantled.
DOCTOR: Hmm. Would it help if I apologised for calling you an idiot?
BOOLIN: Another human example of humour. Ah, ah, ah.
DOCTOR: No, no, no, no. Ha, ha, ha.
BOOLIN: Ha, ha, ha.
DOCTOR: Perfect. By Jove, he's got it.
BOOLIN: Is this what humans call light relief?
DOCTOR: No, just borderline hysteria. Believe me when I tell you, if you leave me stuck here things are going to end pretty badly for all of us. Dismantling would be the least of your problems.
BOOLIN: Very well. (beeps) Follow me.
(Door opens.)
DOCTOR: Boolin? (sotto) You're wonderful. Thank you.
BOOLIN: Something about you compels my loyalty. Perhaps it is the same characteristic that makes Father Gregory a leader of men.
DOCTOR: What I'd like to know is, who brought me here in the first place? And why? The Tsar doesn't seem to know anything about it, or indeed that there's a serviceable wormhole in operation nearby. Those human rebels called me the objective. So did the Servo robots when they fetched us from Earth.
BOOLIN: You are from Earth?
DOCTOR: Well, sort of. But years before your ancestors knew it. On Mrs Wibbsey's Earth, robots like you haven't been invented yet. They've only just come up with the microwave.
BOOLIN: Invented, Doctor? It is treason to speak like that here. To say such things.
DOCTOR: What, that humans created robots? But surely, every child knows that.
BOOLIN: There is only one child in the Palace.
DOCTOR: Ah yes, the cyborg heir.
BOOLIN: I must supervise his return to the hospital.
DOCTOR: Somehow, Father Gregory's more involved with him than anyone really knows. Except perhaps for the Tsar, and his wife.

KANI: Father Gregory says he's ready for her now.
TARNAK: Did you hear that, sweetheart?
WIBBSEY: Ow! Stop shoving me about.
KANI: Leave her be, Tanak. There'll be time for games later.
WIBBSEY: Why is it so dark in here?
KANI: Energy conservation. The Robotovs think they've got it bad, but they've no idea. Our power's needed for more important things than lighting.
WIBBSEY: Oh yes? Like running that space taxi of yours, I shouldn't wonder.
TARNAK: Do you think she's really human? Have you had a good look?
KANI: Of course she is.
TARNAK: Yeah. After all, who'd build a robot to look like an old nag.
WIBBSEY: You'll feel the back of my hand in a minute.
KANI: Hey, she's feisty.
TARNAK: Fat lot of good that'll do her. His nibs can tame any woman.
WIBBSEY: Who's his nibs when he's at home.
GREGORY: I think they mean me, my little one.
(Tom Baker putting on a weird Teutonic accent.)
WIBBSEY: Where did you come from?
GREGORY: Ze robots have their palace, I haff mine. Bio-moon is my domain. Kani, Tarnak, leave us alone, together.
KANI + TARNAK: Yes, Father.
(Door hisses open and closed.)
GREGORY: Now zen, little one, look upon ze face of your new master.
WIBBSEY: Stop messing about, Doctor. Oh, it's so blessed dingy in here.
GREGORY: Your eyes will soon adjust to ze darkness. Come, my dear, stand before me.
WIBBSEY: This is no time for. Oh, my goodness. You're him, aren't you. But it's incredible. You're the image of the Doctor.
GREGORY: I am Father Gregory. Velcome to my vorld.

DOCTOR: How is he, Boolin?
BOOLIN: Better for being on life support again. I'm afraid your recent repair is already starting to fail.
DOCTOR: Mmm, it was only ever going to be temporary. Boolin, those human rebels have the Robotovs by the throat, don't they. They know you need the lunar reserves.
BOOLIN: We depend on that power even more than they do. It's difficult to see how it will all end.
DOCTOR: How about by making peace, hmm? That's the only way you'll share the power with them. And unless you do, poor Alex here will perish.

WIBBSEY: If I wasn't seeing it with my own eyes. You must be his brother or something.
GREGORY: We simply share a random physical likeness, zanks to the endless chaotic ramifications of universal chance.
WIBBSEY: But it's such a coincidence that we've run into you.
GREGORY: You poor voman, it is not by chance that you are here. My machinations have brought us together across the millennia. My troopers had you and ze Doctor under observation for some time before they made their swoop.
WIBBSEY: Your troopers?
GREGORY: Indeed. You vere not kidnapped on ze orders of ze Tsar or his Empire, but on mine.
WIBBSEY: But they were robots who fetched us.
GREGORY: Servo robots under my control. Remember, I lived in ze Palace once. I made good use of my time zere. But vile we vait for ze Doctor to come to your aid, let me show you around the lunar stacks, see my own burgeoning Empire.

BOOLIN: Alex's condition is worsening, Doctor. Even the machines can't keep him alive for much longer. I must call for the Tsar and Tsarina.
DOCTOR: Listen, Boolin. We have to make a very important decision. Do you have access to a transport shuttle?
BOOLIN: Yes. I often make trips to one of the moons for medical supplies for Alex.
DOCTOR: Can we get to it without being seen?
BOOLIN: It's at the nearest airlock, five minutes away.
DOCTOR: Then that settles it. We must disconnect Alex at once.
BOOLIN: What? Why? What are you doing? Stop.
DOCTOR: It's Alex's only hope.
BOOLIN: You're disconnecting everything. You'll kill him.
DOCTOR: I'm just unhooking his support from the main power supply. When we get to your ship, we can connect him to the propulsion unit. That will keep him alive until we get there.
BOOLIN: Until we get where?
DOCTOR: Rebel Moon, of course.
BOOLIN: Into the hands of the humans?
DOCTOR: Into the hands of the one man who can save him, Father Gregory. I think I've worked out why he's so important to the Tsarina. And he also has unlimited power at his disposal.
BOOLIN: But the Servo Guards will monitor my departure. They'll soon realise what has happened.
DOCTOR: By which time we'll be on our way. If they suspect Alex is on board, they won't dare fire on us, will they?
BOOLIN: Are you doing this because you want to rescue Mrs Wibbsey?
DOCTOR: We're doing it together for Alex. Radical solutions, remember? His heart is on the point of collapse. Now quickly, gather him up.

WIBBSEY: What's all this machinery?
GREGORY: It is ze same technology zat brought you here.
WIBBSEY: That wormhole thing? But it sent us to the Palace, not here.
GREGORY: A miscalculation. Such an advanced form of transport isn't easy to master, n'est pas?
WIBBSEY: Oh. Oh, you didn't make it yourself then.
GREGORY: Oh, you flatter my abilities. This machinery comes from a different vorld, von you cannot begin to imagine, from a race whose second nature is to manipulate ze vormholes zat riddle ze universe.
WIBBSEY: Oh yes? And who are they?
GREGORY: Do you see ze markings on all of zis machinery?
WIBBSEY: Oh, funny sort of emblem. It's a snake swallowing its own tail, isn't it?
GREGORY: Zat is ze Serpent Crest, my dear, ze symbol of eternity. Ze mark of ze Skishtari.
WIBBSEY: Who are they?
GREGORY: (laughs) Zey are ze new masters in vaiting.

BOOLIN: There's the airlock, Doctor.
DOCTOR: Quickly, get it open, man.
(Airlock opens.)
SERVO71: Halt. Halt at once.
DOCTOR: Too late, old cock.
(Airlock closes.)
SERVO71: This is Servo 7-1 reporting to security. The Tsar's son is being kidnapped.

KANI: Father!
KANI: A craft has been detected slipping under the transduction shields of the Autumn Palace.
GREGORY: As expected, the Doctor has come for his friend. Who else is aboard?
KANI: Scans detect the objective, one Robotov, and one cyborg.
KANI: The lifesigns are unmistakable. The craft's heading this way, Father. They're bringing the child straight to us.
GREGORY: No. This is against ze plan.
KANI: Servo 9-6 reports that the boy is very sick. What action do you want to take?
GREGORY: Secure ze craft in ze magnetobeam. Do everyzing you can to ensure its safe arrival. Connect full powers to the medical wing, and prepare a bed for the child.

DOCTOR: Bit of a rocky ride, this, Boolin.
BOOLIN: I'm not in control any more. Bio-moon is pulling us in, though I've no idea how.
DOCTOR: More technology your lot don't know about? Oh, no use fighting it then. We might as well put our feet up. I'm rather looking forward to meeting Father Gregory.
BOOLIN: With Alex in their custody, the rebels will think they hold all the cards. They could force the Robotovs to surrender. The Empire will be defeated.
DOCTOR: Whoa there, Boolin. All we're doing is asking for Father Gregory's help in curing a sick child. We're not going in there waving a white flag.

(Shuttle door opens.)
TARNAK: Stay where you are.
WIBBSEY: Doctor!
DOCTOR: Ah, a welcoming party. Mrs Wibbsey, are you all right?
TARNAK: Bellis, seize the child.
DOCTOR: Leave it, Boolin. They'll look after him.
BOOLIN: He needs immediate medical attention.
BELLIS: He'll get it.
DOCTOR: It's in everyone's best interest that the child stays alive.
TARNAK: Take him away.
DOCTOR: I must say, this is what I call a proper Moonbase. All this gleaming industrial hardware and junk, all sharp edges and grease everywhere. And what a lovely view of the howling wilderness out there. Ooo, such a hospitable rock.
WIBBSEY: Doctor, I've met Father Gregory.
WIBBSEY: He's a bit of a rum 'um. He's the dead spit of you. He's not exactly happy that you've brought Alex here. What are you up to?
DOCTOR: The child is very sick, and I'm pretty sure Father Gregory is his only hope. He seems to be the mastermind behind everything here.
WIBBSEY: You'll never believe it. He was operating the wormhole thingy.
WIBBSEY: He took control of the robot guards and sent them to get you from Earth.
DOCTOR: Did he now? Come on, then. Let's not keep him waiting. Boolin, come with us.
TARNAK: This way. Move.
DOCTOR: Has it been nice to be amongst humans again, Wibbs?
WIBBSEY: They're a bit smelly, to be honest.
DOCTOR: Yes, I suppose they are a bit.

(Door opens.)
TARNAK: Through here.
DOCTOR: Hello! Anyone at home?
GREGORY: I am here, Doctor.
DOCTOR: Ah, good.
GREGORY: Tarnak, take Physician Boolin to zer medical wing, and make Mrs Vibbsey comfortable in zer mess. I vould speak with ze Doctor alone.
(Door closes.)

WIBBSEY: How is he?
BOOLIN: His condition has stabilised. The humans are looking after him.
WIBBSEY: It's a good hospital they've got here. I suppose even lowly moon workers get ill sometimes.
BOOLIN: I feel very alone here, the only Robotov among humans.
WIBBSEY: Now you know how I felt at the Palace. But there are similarities between us, aren't there?
BOOLIN: Any which you perceive are superficial. Alex is where our collective hopes lie. He is the wholly and integrated hybrid who will unite Robotovs and humans.
WIBBSEY: Hey, look at the marking on these medical supplies. It's the same thing that was on the lunar stacks that Father Gregory showed me earlier. He said it was the mark of something called Skeeveskits, Skeevkish
BOOLIN: Not the Skishtari?
WIBBSEY: Yes, that was it. I meant to tell the Doctor. Are they a big Corporation or something? Father Gregory called them everyone's new masters.
BOOLIN: Oh, no. Surely he can't be.
WIBBSEY: Bad news?
BOOLIN: The Skishtari aren't a Corporation, they're a race of creatures, hideous, deadly, war-like. They've been ransacking planets in our galaxy for many decades now. If Father Gregory is in league with them, it would no longer be a question of Robotovs against humans, it would be the end of us all.

GREGORY: Thank you, Doctor, for bringing ze child here safely. It was unexpected but given his condition, you have done ze right thing. You know that he is the most valuable entity in zis entire system.
DOCTOR: Yes, I also know that you had something to do with his creation, and that your technology has, shall we say, the edge on that of the Robotovs?
GREGORY: Mrs Vibbsey tells me zat you are keen to bring peace to this vorld, to see harmony between ze creatures whose insides run viz oil and zose who have blood pumping through their weins.
DOCTOR: It does seem to be the only solution if you're to avoid all-out war.
GREGORY: Ze Robotovs are like child's toys running amok. They are wicious, amoral and essentially mindless.
DOCTOR: Rubbish. I've talked to them. They're just as humane, more humane than you are. What do you do, sit in the shadows and mutter to yourself.
GREGORY: I am biding my time. Ze balance of power is about to shift.
DOCTOR: Ha. I thought you already held all the cards. Leadership of the humans, remote control of the Palace Guards.
GREGORY: Only for a finite period, and only ever a few at a time. A revolution needs more zan that.
DOCTOR: Look, Father Gregory, if you destroy the Robotovs I'm going to be very angry. Tell me more about the child. You and the Tsarina created him together, didn't you?
GREGORY: I convinced her that it vud represent a new dawn for our two races.
DOCTOR: Hmm. And how did the Tsar feel about that?
GREGORY: Oh, by ze time he found out it vas too late. Ze whole plan had already been (cough) conceived, literally.
DOCTOR: So Alex is a fusion of genetic material and robotic technology.
GREGORY: His mechanical limbs and skeleton are programmed to grow along wiz ze soft tissue organs. Ze metal plates of his skull will expand with his brain. His heart and his liver were grown in a laboratory using my DNA. The Tsarina believed would help forge a new peace between ze Robotovs and humans.
DOCTOR: Little suspecting that your aims were quite different, or should I say the aims of your paymasters?
GREGORY: Oh, you suspect I am not my own man, Doctor?
DOCTOR: Come off it. You didn't create all this technology yourself. Someone's been helping you and I have a nasty suspicion who. After all, wormhole technology isn't something you come across every day. Come on, then, Father G, spill the beans. Who's pulling your strings, eh?

SERVO: The Tsar commands all energy to be rerouted to disruptor lasers. Power down Palace utilities. All generators apart from those feeding transduction shields and troopers to be switched to offensive capabilites.

TSARINA: Husband, you cannot, you cannot attack the rebels. Not while they have Alex with them.
TSAR: You defiled the Robotov name when you created a son with that human blackguard.
TSARINA: Alex shows us the future. He shows us the day when we will all share the best attributes of both our races.
TSAR: Only as long as he survives.
TSARINA: He must survive. He is the best of us.
TSAR: Do you think if we could not care for him sufficiently here that those wretches on the moon can do any better? As soon as Alex's heart is stilled, then we shall have nothing to lose. We will attack this very night.
TSARINA: Husband, please, no!

GREGORY: Doctor, I am told that you effected some repairs on ze child.
DOCTOR: With all those valves and wires you've got running through his chest, the heart is under immense strain. I did what I could to make him more comfortable.
GREGORY: Zen in doing so you are very close to ze truth. Alex's heart is not ze only thing which ticks inside his savage breast. Hidden beneath it is something which represents ze true future of the Robotov Empire. A Skishtari egg.
DOCTOR: You realise you're in league with one of the most hideously fiendish races in the cosmos?
GREGORY: In league does me too much justice, Doctor. I'm merely ze servant.
DOCTOR: And you've planted one of their eggs inside the frame of that cyborg child.
GREGORY: If you know somezing of the Skishtari, you might also know they conquer vorlds.
DOCTOR: Yes, I do. A dormant egg is laid, then hidden among the inhabitants. The years pass, and at a pre-ordained time, a Serpent God rises amongst them and slays the whole lot.
GREGORY: A Skishtari Emperor will be born from the Robotov Empire of dead flesh and cold metal.
DOCTOR: It's despicable. I can't believe you're helping them.
GREGORY: Vot choice did I have? Zey sought me out and made it clear zat I could not refuse them. Zis sector is ze next on their list of conqvests. Oh, Doctor, ze past three years have been unbearable at times, working for zem against ze people who befriended me years before, living to foment unrest when my previous existence had been based around peace. It has been a living hell, and I am so glad to be relieved of it now.
DOCTOR: When is the egg due to hatch?
GREGORY: Not for another ten years. The Skishtari plays a long game.
DOCTOR: Then surely you're not relieved of duty until that time? You've a long way to go yet.
GREGORY: No, Doctor, zat's vere you are wrong. Because you are going to take my place.

SERVO: Power reserves successfully rerouted to offensive capabilities.
SERVO 2: Missile launch will proceed on his Highnesses command.
SERVO: Target approaching optimum position. We have the Rebel Moon in our sights.

KANI [OC]: Father Gregory, the monitoring crew report a large spacecraft entering orbit around us. They say it bears the Serpent Crest.
KANI [OC]: They think it's the Skishtari mothership. It just appeared, I reckon it must have come through a wormhole.
GREGORY: They must know we have ze child.
DOCTOR:  Got an inside man, have they?
GREGORY: They see everything. I told you how powerful zey are, Doctor, but it's too early!
(Door opens.)
WIBBSEY: Doctor, Boolin says Alex's heart is failing. He hasn't got long.
DOCTOR: Father Gregory, that boy needs your help in more ways than one.
KANI [OC]: Father, a shuttle's on its way from the mothership.
GREGORY: Ah, enough. Lucius!
DOCTOR: More bad news?
GREGORY: Lucius is my go-between with the Skishtari mind. We have very little time.
WIBBSEY: Doctor, what about Alex?
GREGORY: I'll do what I can.
DOCTOR: Good man. Everyone to the medical wing, now!

(Door opens.)
BOOLIN: Father Gregory, Doctor, thank goodness.
DOCTOR: How is he?
BOOLIN: His heart has almost stopped.
DOCTOR: You've got to remove the egg, Gregory.
GREGORY: But ze boy needs a transplant, a new heart.
DOCTOR: They're not easy to come by round here.
BOOLIN: In any case, it would need to be the heart of a child.
DOCTOR: Not necessarily. If you enlarge the chest cavity, even a fully grown human heart could function healthily.
WIBBSEY: Here, I hope you're not suggesting
DOCTOR: Boolin, could you undertake that sort of operation?
BOOLIN: I think so.
GREGORY: But Boolin, zer is something else. Something you must remove. You will see it when you take the boy's own heart out.
BOOLIN: So Mrs Wibbsey is right. You are in league with the Skishtari.
GREGORY: Forgive me. All I can do now is try to make amends, n'est pas?
WIBBSEY: And how will you do that?
GREGORY: Viz a last present to my son. Ze only zing of value which I can give him now. My heart.
LUCIUS [OC]: Father Gregory, the Skishtari shuttle is fifteen minutes away.
GREGORY: Boolin, you must operate at vonce. Take my heart.
BOOLIN: The operation will take more time than we have.
GREGORY: Ze Doctor can buy you more time.
DOCTOR: I can?
GREGORY: I didn't bring you here without making cosmetic preparations first. In my qvarters you will find exact duplicates of my clothing, and precisely manufactured hair pieces. In every sense, you can become me, as I intended.

TARNAK: That's all we need. As if we didn't have enough on our plate with Skishtari, the Robotovs are arming the long range rockets.
BELLIS: We can't withstand that.
TARNAK: Tell me about it.
BELLIS: But we've got the Robotov heir up here. They wouldn't risk killing him, would they? Why don't you patch Kani through? He could reason with them.
TARNAK: When was the last time any of us reasoned with the Robotovs?
BELLIS: True. But then, when was the last time any of us tried?

BOOLIN: I've administered the sedative, Father.
GREGORY: Zo I have just a few moments to tell you.
BOOLIN: You must relax. Don't fight it. Sleep.
GREGORY: Boolin, I must varn you. This Skishtari Egg, you must keep it out of their clutches, and whatever you do, it must never hatch.
BOOLIN: Hush, Father. Sleep.

DOCTOR: How do I look, Mrs Wibbsey?
WIBBSEY: Slow down.
WIBBSEY: His steps are more measured than yours. He doesn't galumph like that.
DOCTOR: Gallumph? I don't galumph.
WIBBSEY: Oh shh. Now there's the airlock. I'll hang back out of sight. Good luck, Doctor.
DOCTOR: Ha. Piece of cake.
WIBBSEY: Don't let that beard fall off.
(Airlock opens.)
DOCTOR: Greetings, Lucius.
LUCIUS: You are not keeping the Skishtari up to date, Gregory. Why has the child been brought here to this satellite? Are you activating the plan without us?
DOCTOR: Nozing of ze sort, Lucius. Zer is disruption in the Robotov Palace. I didn't vont zer child to be harmed.
LUCIUS: The Robotovs are about to launch an attack on this moon. They think you have killed their heir.
DOCTOR: Ah! I vill try to explain to zem.
LUCIUS: Too late. You have let this situation deteriorate. You have endangered the sacred Egg, so we have come to reclaim it. You will remove the Egg from the child's chest. The plan is at an end.
DOCTOR: Now let us not be hasty, Lucius. Argh!
LUCIUS: You will do as I instruct.
LUCIUS: If you do not comply, I will reclaim it myself, and the Skishtari will destroy you all.
DOCTOR: Oh, you broke my skin wiz zat tongue of yours. You have drawn blood!
LUCIUS: I will break more than that unless you do as I say, Gregory.
DOCTOR: All right, all right. If you'll return to your shuttle, I will bring it to you vizin ze hour.
LUCIUS: I would sooner wait here.
DOCTOR: Please, Lucius. Among ze humans, as of Robotovs, only I have ever looked up on the Skishtari. It would cause great unrest for zem to see you now.
LUCIUS: Are you honourable?
DOCTOR: Oh, Farzar Gregory give you his vord.

TARNAK: That's it, they're launching.
BELLIS: Better tell Kani they'll be here in eight minutes.
TARNAK: Tell him to get Father Gregory and meet us in the defence shelter now.

(Door opens.)
DOCTOR: Boolin, what's happening?
BOOLIN: I did it, Doctor. The operation was a success.
WIBBSEY: Oh, well done, Boolin.
BOOLIN: Father Gregory is dead, but his heart beats on. Alex will live.
DOCTOR: And the Egg?
DOCTOR: Ah yes.
WIBBSEY: It's like one of those Fabergé things. It's beautiful.
DOCTOR: And deadly. Boolin, I want you to take charge of it for now. Alex's body may turn out to be dependent on it in some way.
BOOLIN: If we can reach my shuttle I intend to. I have enough fuel to take him to the next moon.
DOCTOR: That won't be far enough. Besides, if the Robotovs don't shoot you down, the Skishtari will.
WIBBSEY: Shouldn't we stay with them, Doctor, just in case?
DOCTOR: Ultimately the Egg needs putting somewhere safe, somewhere we can place it in a Time stasis so that it will never hatch.
WIBBSEY: But where? We can't return to the Palace. This place is about to go up.
DOCTOR: We've only one hope. The wormhole transport.
BOOLIN: Can you operate it?
DOCTOR: I can do anything. Almost. But only if we can find it.
WIBBSEY: I know where it is. Father Gregory showed it to me. Near the lunar stacks.
DOCTOR: Did he, indeed? Come on.
BOOLIN: I'm sorry, Doctor, but no. I'll take my chances in the shuttle with Alex.
WIBBSEY: No! Boolin, come back.
DOCTOR: It's all right, Mrs Wibbsey, let them go. Now, lead on.

TARNAK: Here they come.
BELLIS: Tarnak, come on.
TARNAK: We've had it. Kani says he can't find Father Gregory anywhere. Some revolution this is.
BELLIS: Never mind about them. It's every man for himself now.
TARNAK: Hiding in shelters, is that what we're reduced to?
BELLIS: Yes! Now come on.

WIBBSEY: Is this what you're looking for, Doctor?
DOCTOR: Ah yes, a wormhole portal generator. Think of it as a rudimentary tin opener for an immensely dangerous can of soup.
WIBBSEY: Seen one before, have you?
DOCTOR: I know a little of the Skishtari. Travelling along wormholes is second nature to them. Nasty way to get around. More like a game of snakes and ladders.
WIBBSEY: And Gregory used it behind their backs to kidnap us from Earth?
DOCTOR: Yes. What I don't yet know is how he found me in the first place. There. That's it. I've routed secondary portals through the two shuttle docks.
DOCTOR: So now I'm going to do three quite incredible things. Well, aren't you going to ask me what they are?
WIBBSEY: I'm agog.
DOCTOR: Agog? I should think you are.
WIBBSEY: Just tell me!
DOCTOR: One, I'm going to send a Skishtari shuttle and mothership back the way they came, through a wormhole of their own making. Two, I'm going to send Boolin's shuttle to Earth. Hexford to be precise.
WIBBSEY: You're sending them to Nest Cottage?
DOCTOR: That will allow me to place the Egg in hibernation.
WIBBSEY: Oh, here come the rockets. Ooo, I hope you're going to say the third thing is sending us home as well.
DOCTOR: Well, naturally. I do believe it's time for tea. Now, I think I can do all three things at once. If I invert the rectilinear outsourcer and finesse the axiomatic oscillator. Well, never mind the details. Either I get it right or there'll be an almighty explosion.
WIBBSEY: Doctor, get a shift on.
DOCTOR: Hold on to my scarf, Wibbs. Hang on very tightly, old girl.
(Lots of ooos and whooshes.)

WIBBSEY: Oo, er, oo, ah.
DOCTOR: Ah, solid if moist ground. A breathable atmosphere and oh, birdsong.
(Also a church bell in the background.)
WIBBSEY: Have we made it?
DOCTOR: Yes, Mrs Wibbsey, we have.
WIBBSEY: But what happened to the Moonbase and the Skishtari.
DOCTOR: We got away just as the rockets hit. Amazing, eh?
WIBBSEY: Incredible, Doctor.
DOCTOR: The rebels will have to take to their shelters. Those who survive will have to sort out their squabble with the robots. At least they won't have the Skishtari hissing down their necks for a while, since we whizzed them back down their wormhole.
WIBBSEY: And Boolin? And Alex? Are they here?
DOCTOR: Hopefully they're around somewhere. Directing a wormhole portal isn't a very precise art. I may have been slightly off.
WIBBSEY: But this is Hexford village. We're home, Doctor.
DOCTOR: Are we?
WIBBSEY: We're on the village green, and the church there and, and, and that's funny. Where's the mini-market? And hang on a moment, where's Nest Cottage?
DOCTOR: Oh dear, I think we're too early.
WIBBSEY: You mean this isn't the present day?
DOCTOR: By the look of those stocks, it isn't even the twentieth century.
WIBBSEY: Oh. How are we going to get home?
DOCTOR: You may have to leave that one with me for a while. The wormhole portal will have closed up the moment it deposited us. We only had a one-way ticket.
WIBBSEY: You mean we're trapped here?
DOCTOR: Let's say sojourned, for the time being. Come on, Mrs Wibbsey. I smell trouble in the air.

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