Chapter Thirty Four

The Master downed a glass of brandy while he watched his laptop and perused the videos on You Tube. He had shut down the internet for the entire Earth, except for him. He was fascinated by the different videos the humans had uploaded and watched them whenever he had spare time. He saw a flash of light out of the corner of his eye and glanced up at the Toclafane hovering above him.

"You oughta see the sorts of things your ancestors put on the internet. I'm quite addicted to the Peanut Butter Jelly Time song; it's annoying but catchy at the same time. No wonder the Doctor find these apes so fascinating."

"Sir, one of us was captured by the Doctor," the Toclafane said.

The Master was pouring himself another brandy when he heard that. He stopped and put the decanter down, raising his eyebrow while his brain processed what the Toclafane just said.

"I'm sorry? The Doctor captured one of you, is that what you just said?"

"Yes, Sir."

"Okay, how?"

"Lightning hit one of us outside the Calais house. The Toclafane was brought down and stunned. The Doctor brought it into the house and interrogated it."

"Show me. Show me footage of them!" the Master said.

A door slid open in the side of the orb and the Toclafane projected a hologram for him. The Master's eyes bugged out when he saw the Doctor.

"He's young again? How the hell did that happen?" the Master said, pointing to the holographic Doctor.

"No idea, Sir."

"He's young! Damn him! I thought the old codger was stumbling his way around France!"

He suddenly had a thought and he groaned.

"Damn him! Lazlabs! He found it and used the machine then! I should have destroyed it when I had the chance. And I notice Harkness is in the midst of them instead of rounding them up. And…it seems my concubine is also helping them. I do hate it when employees mutiny. Toclafane, order an attack on the house, obliterate it and everyone inside. And make sure Harkness is chopped into such a fine powder that he won't come back. Do it now!"

"Consider it done, Sir."

The hologram disappeared along with the Toclafane. The Master plopped down in his chair and sighed angrily.

"Damn you, Doctor! You are the bane of my entire fucking existence!" he growled before he picked up the decanter.


"ATTACK! ATTACK! ATTACK!" the Toclafane chanted as they dived down from the heavens towards Clarice's house.

The cows were annihilated as the Toclafane began firing indiscriminately. They smashed through the windows and flew through the house, searching for their prey. But the house was deserted. The Toclafane flew outside and searched the barn and shed but there was no there. The orbs assembled in the yard after making a thorough search.

"They are gone," one of them said to the others. "No sign of Doctor or companions. They have left."

"We must find them. They must be stopped," a female Toclafane said.

The orbs flew back up into the air and spread out over the French countryside and Calais, searching for their prey.


(Los Angeles, California…)

Rose gasped and staggered the moment the manipulator landed them in the middle of downtown LA. She felt dizzy and she gripped the side of an office building until she could get her equilibrium back. She glanced back over her shoulder and noticed the others had been affected too.

"What was that?" Donna said as she sat down on an iron bench near the building.

"That was a vortex manipulator," the Doctor said. "Sorry everyone, they're a bit rough since you have to travel without a capsule."

"Where are we?" Clarice said, looking around.

"Los Angeles," Jack said. "I figured Europe was a bad idea. Actually, this is a bad idea too since it's a major city but you said you needed electronic parts," he said to the Doctor.

The Doctor nodded. After everyone got over their dizziness, they went off in search of parts. The streets were nearly deserted with the exception of several scruffy homeless people scavenging for food and supplies. They turned their attention to the Doctor and his friends, looking at them with interest but they turned away when the Doctor shot them a warning look. Some of the buildings they passed by had scorch marks on the facades and broken windows. They could see evidence of looting. The sidewalks were filled with trash and broken glass and there were abandoned cars all over the road. In some of the cars, they saw decomposing bodies and the Doctor clenched his jaw when they passed by an SUV and they saw the remains of a little blonde girl sitting inside it with her mother in the driver's seat. There were predators everywhere. Wild dogs roamed the streets while carrion birds feasted on the remains of the dead.

"Looks like a war zone," Rose said.

"I saw this over and over while I hopped around the Earth," Martha said. "It's like this all over the place."

They found a Radio Shack and stopped. The glass had been shattered out of the windows and doors and most of the items had been looted but they went inside anyway.

"Not much left," Jack said as they looked around.

"No, but there's still some useful things here," the Doctor said, bending down to retrieve a mobile from the floor of the shop.

It had been stepped on in the looter's rush. The Doctor examined it and nodded to himself when he affirmed that he could still used parts from it.


The Doctor looked over his shoulder. Martha was holding a busted laptop.

"Monitor's cracked but I remember you using one of these to make the filters."

"Yes, thank you," the Doctor said, taking it from her.

"Hey, this is a perfectly good Blackberry," Jack said, picking one up from the floor. "It's not damaged at all. I'm stealing it!"

"So, you're becoming a looter now?" the Doctor said to him when he stuffed the Blackberry in his pocket.

"And you're not?" Jack said, pointing to the laptop under his arm.

"I'm salvaging this stuff for parts that will be used to protect all of us. I'm not picking up a nifty new Blackberry that can't even be used."

"Sorry, it's the con man in me, see something new, steal it," Jack said with a wink.

The Doctor rolled his eyes at that. They left the store when the Doctor couldn't find anything else of use and continued on their way. They found a hardware store next. The inventory was nearly gone but the Doctor found a display for blank keys and he took several of them and stuffed them in his pocket.

"Shouldn't you be wearing a hoodie while you do that?" Jack joked as he watched him stealing the keys.

"I think this is enough for the filters," the Doctor said.

"Uh-huh, you're just saying that but the moment we pass by some TVs…"

The Doctor chuckled and patted him on the shoulder.

"Wouldn't be the first time I stole something, old friend," he said.

"I know because you stole my heart away!" Jack gushed as he put his hands over his heart.

Martha bent over laughing while Rose gave him a wry look. The Doctor patted Jack's cheek before leaving the store.

"He touched me!" Jack gushed. "I'll never wash this cheek again!"


The Doctor and his companions walked through downtown LA trying to find somewhere to hide out. They asked a few people if they could recommend somewhere where they could stay. A few of the people shied away from them but one haggard looking man with a long, white beard led them to a YWCA that was being used as a shelter by many people. The exterior was shot up and some of the windows had been shot out and boarded up. There were ten stone steps going up to a set of double doors and on the steps were a few winos, passed out holding brown paper sacks filled with liquor. The inside looked better though and when they went through the doors, a woman was sitting behind the front desk. She was young and Asian with a preppy look to her. She smiled warmly at them and brushed her long, black hair back behind her left ear as the old man pointed to her.

"This is Yumiko, she'll help you," the man said.

The Doctor thanked him and walked up to the front desk.

"Need shelter?" Yumiko said with a slight Japanese accent.

"Yes," the Doctor said.

"Are you all together?" Yumiko said, pointing to his friends.

"We are but we may need more than one room," the Doctor said.

"Yes, the rooms are quite small," Yumiko said, opening a notebook and pulling a floor plan out of it. "You're in luck. We do have the two apartments downstairs by the swimming pool."

"We'll take it, how much to let them?" the Doctor said.

"No monetary charge. We ask that everyone volunteer here to keep the place running. I live here too and it's my day to work the desk. I can fit you into a schedule and give you copies. If you do that, you get free room and board."

"Food? We get food here?" Jack said.

"Yes. We have people smuggling food in here and there's a kitchen behind the rec room. Breakfast is served at 7 am, lunch at noon and dinner's at 5. Everyone eats in the rec rooms."

"And the Toclafane allow this?" the Doctor said.

"Most of the people who stay here work in labor camps. They get bused out every morning after breakfast so the Master allows this place to exist because of that. The rooms are furnished. It's second hand stuff but it's better than nothing. So…interested?"

"Can we use the pool too?" Jack said.

"Yes, the pool is open to anyone who stays here."

"Cool! Let's do it!" Jack said.

"We might not be here long," the Doctor said. "We are on the move but we'd like to stay for as long as we can."

"On the move, where are you going?" Yumiko said.

"We'd rather not say," the Doctor said.

Yumiko paused for a moment.

"Um…we do allow rebels to stay here but if you're captured, you're on your own," she said.

"We understand that. We just need a place to rest until we move on."

"Then you're welcome here. I just need your names so I can write them on the floor plan," she said, grabbing a pencil.

Everyone gave her their names and she wrote them in on the floor plan. Once she was finished, she handed them the keys to the apartments and directed them to the elevator. The Doctor thanked her and everyone walked towards the elevator while Yumiko went back to listening to her IPod.

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