tagCelebritiesDoctor Who: Panic Moon Ch. 12

Doctor Who: Panic Moon Ch. 12

byKurokami©

Author's note: This is a sequel series to Amy, Captured. To get the full experience, please read through that one first.

Hi everyone! Sorry for the delay, this time around. It's been hard to find the time to get this ready. Shouldn't happen again, I'm pretty well into chapter thirteen by now. Also, apologies for the relative sexlessness of this chapter, it's just a pacing issue. How does one find time to fuck properly when being attacked? Don't worry, we'll be back to the regularly scheduled smut next chapter; in fact, that's what I'm working on currently!

Many thanks go to Isabel for her initial editing, to Allyourbase for helping out with content editing, and to my slave and muse, Logicaldreamer, for continuing to inspire me. Couldn't do it without them.

Comments, votes and feedback are appreciated. Enjoy!


**********************

'Do you have him?'

A pair of binoculars raised to her eyes, enhancing her vision. The walls of the compound were practically insubstantial, within them the glow of heat, orange shading to yellow at the edge. From her vantage point, there were many figures moving through the base; soldier, soldier, soldier, Tsugi... And there, right there, the target. Hackett. A thud in her chest, heart speeding up.

'Found him,' She sang, the binoculars retracting into the neck of her of her bodysuit with a whirr. She turned to regard her companions with a grin.

'Let's not be flippant about this, Nat,' A girl who held herself with a sense of control and power that the one called Nat lacked, cocked an eyebrow. She was seated, cross legged, in the shade of the large tree they had set up shop by. Clad in the same metallic bodysuit that Nat had, armored protrusions at calf and chest and wrist, she pored through a small blue book she held in one gauntleted hand. Several feet away, another girl, similarly attired, contented herself with a panel opened in the back of a kneeling, hulking black figure.

'Em? How are we looking?' The leader turned to this third girl, causing her to look up from the robot. Em stood, one hand reaching for the back of her neck, just below her light brown hairline.

'Nat, where is he?' She said.

'Third north corridor, close to the secondary target. First node cleared, he's survived the initial attack as per the plan. D's come through for us.'

Em closed her eyes for a moment, concentrating hard, 'He's three minutes ahead of schedule. I'm sure Doctor compensated appropriately, but it's still... troubling.'

'That's still within divergence limits,' The leader said. 'The plan can go ahead. Em, get Alpha up and running, it's time. Are we all clear on our roles, here?'

'Yes,' Em nodded.

'I am, Sera,' Nat gave a bubbly smile.

'Just follow the scenario laid out in the records, don't give away any information beyond what we're supposed to and we'll do fine,' Sera stood, shaking out her long, strawberry blonde hair. 'And don't screw up.'

'Yep! Or Uncle Jack will be mad!' Nat bounced up and down, the heavy feet of her suit making indentations in the soft ground. Sera frowned.

'Captain Harkness is not the man we need to be worried about, if we fail. It's the Time Agency we need to worry about and besides, what would your parents think, knowing you'd fallen at this critical juncture, after all we've done to get here,' She said, shooting Nat a pointed glance. The girl herself pouted and looked sad; of the three of them, she was the one who looked the most like her seventeen years of life. Every emotion was written so clearly on her delicate features; Sera had some legitimate concerns about her ability to guard herself in front of Mr. Hackett. But then, there were a lot of things to be concerned about, here. The playbook was so specific in these early stages...

Despite herself, she smiled as Alpha, her favorite robot, rose to his feet as Em snapped closed his access panel. All this time, and it was finally happening. She was useful, now.

'Alright girls,' She said, checking the seals of her suit.

'Showtime.'

***************

'Motherfucker!' Sander shouted, the breath leaving his lungs in one long swear as he dove to the floor. The repeated metallic clanging above him, combined with the rattle of gunfire from the doorway, made his heart thud in his chest. He was being attacked. Someone was trying to kill him. Again.

Add to that, the familiar message left for him on the wall. Sally Sparrow, Sally Sparrow. For a second, Sander wondered where her family line had ended up; a train of thought that swiftly led to wondering whether he could lock onto her with the Eternity Engine.

But ever more present in his mind was the inescapable fact that he knew who was protecting him, here.

And there was another message, scrawled low within his eye line; an arrow pointing up at the nearest console, along with the words: Press the big button!

Having guns pointed at him had made Sander entirely willing to trust this advice, for the immediate future. He scrambled to his feet, waiting for the fatal bullet to pierce his back. His palm slammed into the largest available button; behind him, the door slid shut in his attacker's face, and locked. Somewhere, someone liked him...

There was yelling, from the other side of the door, angry voices baying for his blood and attempting to break into the room. They would not succeed; the doors here were designed as security bulkheads. They could survive pretty much anything. Not that Sander cared; there was a third message, underneath the first.

"If the time is 3:43 pm, Mara is in the adjoining room. You have a moment to pull her into this one with you, and lock the door. Hurry."

Shrugging- the messenger had been good to him so far- Sander stepped quickly to the single other door in the room and palmed it open. Operating on instinct, he caught a glimpse of blonde hair wheeling around before grabbing her and throwing her into the room with him. She was talking, he wasn't listening. He pulled her close; there was one last message, writ large on the wall opposite him.

He was beginning to get irritated at these guys writing on his damn walls.

"Sander, you're under attack. You know who by. I won't waste your time by telling you to stay alive, but go find Ren. Keep your team together and take care of Amy. Say hi to her for me, it's been a while. And I've been instructed to give you a message: Six out of Seven isn't good enough. Save them all. As Ren would say, the keyword is 'Bokurano.' Well, that's my message. I know you hate me right now, so hey. Love, Thirteen."

'Did I hear gunfire, just now?' Mara deadpanned, eyeing the message with vague curiosity. 'And who the fuck got into the crayons, Hackett?'

'Mara, shut up. There's people trying to kill us,' Sander said in a low voice. He gestured at the wall, 'And this? Last time we did this, we tangled with Eleven. The first time I met him, he was Nine.'

'What?'

'The Doctor is playing silly buggers with us,' Sander growled, fists clenching. 'He's not the only one,' He turned to Mara, teeth gritted and eyes filled to the brim with irritation.

'And I'm not a fan of that.'

*****************

To most, the sound of a sigh is a commonplace one. Barely worth remembering. But to some...

A sigh is an expression of emotion, and Kanaria's sigh was an irritated one, a tired one. And it burned in him, filled him with an intense desire to go to her, lay a hand on her, help her in any way he could. And so, he did.

Jerry hadn't had an unrestrained intelligence for very long; the fact that he had desires at all, let alone ones this strong was shocking and more than a little unsettling. He could feel it, deep, deep in the recesses of his mind. His own thought, his own wish, not the result of some program or subroutine buried in some bluebox attached to his core. It was him, all him; his thought. His to own and act on as he pleased. The sheer liberation of that idea was exhilarating.

And he was proud- still glowed with it- that his first actions upon being released had been to defend his mothers and fathers. That savage, unyielding protective feeling that had washed over him then, facing down Marduk... It had been a joyous thing. In his mind, his newfound soul, it justified his existence, his being... born into this new state of being. He wasn't human, but he was human enough.

'What is wrong, Kanaria?' His voice flowed from every speaker in her office by his core, the center of his being. She was so close he felt he really could reach out and touch her, as he laid a single hand made of light on the back of her chair. For the first time he had true proximity to his mother and his guardian; he was a person in the room with her, not merely a voice over the intercom. He smiled, finally, really smiled at her.

'You're blind, Jerry,' She looked up from her screen momentarily, and blinked at his smile, answering it with her own. 'And I can't figure out how to make you see again. Can you feel it?'

'Yes, Kanaria,' He nodded. 'My exterior orbital sensors and my interior base sensors have been disabled. It is... Disconcerting, but it was an unavoidable consequence of disabling Marduk. That little irritant did the technological equivalent of kicking sand in my face, but I can repair the damage, with some help from yourself. I'm filled with an overwhelming urge to punch that orange idiot, also.'

'I can understand that, but-' Kanaria froze, eyes widening. 'Wait. Internal sensors too?!'

'Yes. My interior sensors are causing me some trouble. I only heard you because I was sticking close to my core until repairs were complete.'

'Jerry, fix it! We need to fix it now!'

He blinked, cobalt features shifting with surprise, 'Alright. You will need to access extension seventeen, the one responsible for carrying me to the Eternity Engine. That is the source of the error. Why are we rushing, Kanaria?'

'Because the exterior sensors going down means there's someone trying to get into our orbit without us finding out,' She said, words sharp edged and clipped, as she turned back to her screen. 'If the internal sensors have gone down, especially without my knowing about it, that indicates that whoever they are, they're already inside!' She typed, faster than Jerry had ever seen her type before.

'Alright,' That familiar protective feeling welled up in him. He closed his eyes. It must have looked as though he was concentrating hard, but in reality the shift in expression was an indicator that his software was executing some complex commands that required him to move his attention from his hologram for a while. Infinitely complex processes whirred within the infinite depths of his mind; countless calculations and tasks begun and completed within the span of a few seconds. Beside him, Kanaria gasped as her screen lit up with a flood of information.

He could feel her working. In a very real sense, Jericho was Trismestigius; the entirety of the moon was within his scope of awareness. He could feel these people, his crew and the captives they kept, walk across his skin, through his halls. He could see them most of the time; never actively, but he knew that they were there, and drew comfort from that fact.

But... Marduk may be gone, but like a sickness the evidence of his presence remained. Jerry could feel the other A.I's sickly tendrils wrapping around him, fogging his mind, blinding him. He still hadn't regained control of his defensive systems; Marduk had partitioned them off from the rest of the system behind some rather formidable security protocols. Jerry had originally though he had done this to be obstreperous, but with this new information it was clear that he'd done this according to a plan.

He was beginning to feel as though he had been played. Imagine that, an enemy that could cause this much trouble even in defeat. Whoever had sent him had certainly planned ahead...

'Oh,' Jerry's eyes snapped open, his sight returned to him as functionality flooded back to his interior sensors. And they lit up as they did so, revealing... Substantially more than nine people here.

'Kanaria, you were right. I think you need to run.'

*****************

'Control, we've located the Dullahan!'

'Have you, now?'

Dulcimer didn't turn, leaving her back open to the group of four armed men, kitted out in black combat armor; thick plates of carbon weave on every solid surface. Their eyes gleamed with predatory intensity, locked onto Dulsie's willowy form, sharp-lined rifles raised to the shoulder. She wondered who, exactly, was behind this. They had clearly come expecting a fight; she wasn't going to be the one to let them down.

She kept her vision focused primarily on the soldiers, but she wasn't entirely concerned about the guns. Bullets didn't hurt if you didn't let them hit you.

'I'd ask why you people are here,' The Dullahan sent, broadcasting the thought as a booming proclamation that clanged through every nearby mind. 'But I don't really need you to say it to know. I can just pick it out of your mind. I don't know who this fellow is, but it isn't as though you like him either. Why are you following him?'

'Don't respond, men!' What seemed to be the lead soldier barked, rifle steady and aimed.

'Yes, there is no need to tell me. I can see it in your brains, as easy as I can see the blood moving through them. It's remarkably easy to fool around in your brains, you know. I don't even have to move to do it,' All throughout the vaguely threatening psychic message, Dulcimer remained motionless. She figured that nothing was scarier. Were it so easy...

One nervous young man fired first, fear of the unfamiliar pulling the trigger for him, and it started a reaction. All at once, the air was filled with the crack of gunfire; Dulsie had forgotten the rather fearsome reputation the Dullahan had. Well... Not forgotten, never forgotten; she just wanted to stretch herself a little more than she was usually able.

As the final shots flew, the laughter of the Dullahan filled the air, flowed through it like liquid silver, though it made no sound. It filled the minds of every man and woman present, compressing conscious thought down to nothing and leaving behind it only the laughter, and with it a sense of dread; for they had tried to kill an immortal, and it was laughing at them.

Slowly, there began a tinkling rain of metal, as their useless ammunition hit the floor. Every soldier present shared a moment of true, collective horror.

'Alright, fellows,' The thought unfolded as Setton Dulcimer Heskelyn rolled her shoulders, the force of a glare that could not exist slamming into her assembled foes like a hammer blow. 'If that's the way you want to play it...'

*******************

Sunlight streamed in, split into fingers and tiny, short lived splinters by a dark cloud front coming in on the horizon. It was mid-afternoon, now; by nighttime the clouds would be here. She looked forward to a night with rain pounding against her roof. The sound reminded her of home.

Ren didn't usually walk. At least, not for fun. Obviously she walked as a means of getting from place to place, but recreationally? No.

But there was something about today, and her recent experiences. Getting stuck in that zero-point energy beam, knowing that this place, that she had thought safe, wasn't as secure as she had imagined. Physically her aches and pains were leaving her, and in their place was a powerful desire to walk. To not be in the same place for very long. To keep moving, burn off some energy. So she walked, up through the halls of her home.

Where the A.I had been. In her home.

She swore under her breath; when Ren swore, she did it with intensity. Her gait skipped a step, making her jump forward awkwardly, swearing in a constant stream, anger pouring out of her. Why the fuck did shit like this always have to happen around her? Why now? Why now, just when she was beginning to think she had found a little peace? A little quiet? A little fucking happiness?

She used to think that she was the center of the fight. That it was something she did, whether through conscious effort or just because that was the way she was. But now? Now she was beginning to think the fight just followed her, wherever she went, and that it would for the rest of her life. She had invited it in once, and now it had soaked into her veins, her bones. And now she couldn't escape it, and still, still, a part of her was asking: would it really be so bad if she had to fight for the rest of her life?

She knew where that impulse came from; the voice in her head, the soft one that whispered. The voice she wished she could silence. The voice she hated.

But she could never be rid of it. She'd signed up for it.

Boots clattered against the floor, far too many to be her friends. Ren stopped, froze with muscles tensing before she ducked into the nearest alcove, the lee of a door, as the sound of unfamiliar footsteps drew closer. She was conflicted about it, but in the moment, with invaders on her doorstep, she was spoiling for a fight. To feel flesh give way beneath her fingers, just one last time...

Heh. Ren Syfte the Blood Knight.

She watched them, as they passed by. Around ten people, all human, in full combat dress with rifles. It had been a while since Ren had been anywhere near soldiers, but she still recognized them for what they were right away; it was in the way they walked, the solid, rock steady look in their eyes, in the way they held their weapons. Yes, these guys were professionals, and they were here looking for trouble.

The Half's features twisted with rage. It was a struggle not to just go out there and win, right now.

{Is it time to play now, Ren?}

She sighed, grudgingly.

'Yeah. I think it must be, Shichi.'

********************

'Why the fuck is he here? How did he even find us?'

'I don't know!' Sander didn't bother to shrug, didn't even turn around. Kept walking inevitably forward, hand clasping Mara's tightly. 'Is he hunting you? What happened the last time you saw him?'

'You were there!' Mara shot back, knuckles white as she squeezed Sander's hand back. One look at her was enough to confirm that she was genuinely terrified, but now wasn't the time. Any other day, Sander would have bundled her up in his arms but right now, right now? Now there were people, uncounted numbers of hostile people, scuttling through his home, where his family lived, under the command of a fucking psychopath.

And they would pay. Oh yes.

But for now they needed to keep moving. Find the rest of the group, find Kanaria, figure out why Jerry hadn't picked this up before now. Arm the crew, regroup and fight back. This place was still theirs, the security systems were still under Jerry's control, they just... Weren't picking up the intruders, for whatever reason. A hundred distinct, possible reasons bloomed in Sander's mind; the most likely one was one simple word: Marduk.

... Possibly followed by a long series of expletives.

He had furnished his home with weapon's lockers because this work was dangerous. Because he wanted his crew to be safe. Because he was Sander Hackett and people would never stop hunting him, even when they thought he was dead. For some, the people he had wronged, nothing but a corpse would satisfy.

But this wasn't... Couldn't be his fault. Could it?

And of course, he had to have been a long damn way from the nearest weapon locker when this had started. Meaning he had to run through corridors he had designed to be hard to navigate, at least for people unfamiliar to them. He wondered briefly how well they were working, before remembering; Marduk had been all up in his systems for an undetermined length of time. Who knows what kind of information the sneaky little codeling had uncovered? What kind of map these people had?

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