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 Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]

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mistojen
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Mon Jun 30, 2008 7:53 pm

Donna relaxed against the door, trying to catch her breath as it finally slammed shut.

"Thanks for that," the Doctor nodded at the waiter.

"Pleased to be of service, Sir. Got to look after our customers," the purple-clad man replied.


It was really unexpected that someone else had stayed behind just to help them, but Donna was glad he had.

Before she could get too relaxed, however, there was a thud against the door...and then several others quickly following before a dart pierced the door completely inches away from Donna's head on the right side.

"Whoa!" she shouted, jumping away and grabbing onto Ianto to steady herself as she nearly lost her balance and fell over. She let go when she regained her balance and stared back at the thing, wide eyed. "More running, then, yeah?" she asked the Doctor breathlessly.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Tue Jul 01, 2008 1:59 am

"More running, then, yeah?"

The Doctor stared wide-eyed at the dart for just a moment, before taking a deep breath and turning to face Donna.

"Ah, Yeah! Running's good," he replied, setting off down the corridor toward the nearest lift.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Tue Jul 01, 2008 1:24 pm

Donna held onto him for balance, as Ianto witnessed wide-eyed and speechless to a dart coming right for her head. Then, they started running again, of course. Ianto could tell from the screaming behind them that more darts were coming through the now sealed doors, although he had no clue how, one would think the doors to a public place like that one could hold off a bunch of darts, but what did he know, really?

He was running, and Jenny was running, and the Doctor, and Donna - poor Donna, she'd almost gotten hit by one of those things - and, woe of woes if the darts caught up to them before they reached the lift, because his legs were beginning to falter.

They reached the lift just in time, getting in with three other people. The darts were coming right for them, right for the lift, they were closer, Ianto flinched and tried to move everybody out of the way...But, luckily, the doors to the lift closed right before the darts got there. They still heard the thuds of at least five darts carving themselves on the metal.

Ianto wiped his brow, gasping for air.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Tue Jul 01, 2008 4:40 pm

Jenny heaved a huge sigh of relief as the lift closed just before the lead darts of the swarm reached them, then leaned back against the wall next to Ianto, eyes shut and shaking a little as the darts pinged against the door of the lift. "That...was a little too close."

It unnerved her, how fast those darts could move; singularly they were very hard to outrun, and even as a group it had taken them less than five minutes to get from the mountains to the restaurant, and that had to be at least an hour's run if not more...wait a minute! They came from the mountains! That means they had a source to be found...and oh bugger, maybe more dart-swarms were already coming!

Jenny straightened up as if stung, and turned to talk to her dad. Or more accurately, babble at high speed to him...like father, like daughter. "Dad! Those darts came from the direction of the mountains, so they probably have a nest or a base or something in there somewhere, right? And we have to find that place quick, or more dart-swarms might show up...and one's more trouble than we can handle already."
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 1:19 am

The Doctor leaned forward, back against the lift and his hands on his knees. The lift doors seemed sturdy, but he didn't think it'd hold out for long against the darts, whatever they were. He couldn't help smiling just a little though. The situation was serious, sure, but this was something new and exciting and as such the adrenaline was kicking in, his mind whirring with possibilities, and that was just plain fun (mixed with terror of course).

He was trying to think of their next best course of action when Jenny spoke up, speaking quickly as her mind processed information almost as fast as his own, probably feeding off the same adrenaline rush.

"Dad! Those darts came from the direction of the mountains, so they probably have a nest or a base or something in there somewhere, right? And we have to find that place quick, or more dart-swarms might show up...and one's more trouble than we can handle already."

"Jenny, you're right! Absolutely right." Lifting his head so he could be heard clearly by the on board computer, he stated: "Lift destination: Launch Bay Alpha."

At his command, the lift slid into it's usual brightly coloured, high-speed action sending its cramped passengers bumping into each other as it darted off to the nearby destination.

"I think we're going to take that midnight cruise a little early," he informed the others. "We're going into The Crystal Ranges."
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 5:35 pm

"Dad! Those darts came from the direction of the mountains, so they probably have a nest or a base or something in there somewhere, right? And we have to find that place quick, or more dart-swarms might show up...and one's more trouble than we can handle already."

Donna looked over at Jenny in amused awe before turning to Ianto. "Like father, like daughter. It'll take a bit of getting used to," she whispered, grinning.

"I think we're going to take that midnight cruise a little early," he informed the others. "We're going into The Crystal Ranges."

Part of Donna was excited to see Jenny and the Doctor in action together again. There was also the thrill of the 'hunt,' so to speak, but part of her was afraid. There was always a part of Donna that froze in fear; it didn't, however, usually take very long for her to shove that away and get down to business. The important thing was to get the job done and save the world. Donna actually rather quite liked being part of the team that would be there to do it.

"Right, then," she said with a confident smile. "Off we go."
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 7:54 pm

"We're going into The Crystal Ranges."

As he heard this, Ianto looked at the others. Jenny was, of course, as excited as her father, which was completely natural. Donna looked as frightened and cautious as she looked thrilled. Ianto couldn't say he was particularly thrilled, but he could not deny the little shard of excitement making its way into his brain. The adrenaline rush was a long time coming, seeing as he couldn't understand, for a long time, how the rest of Torchwood actually enjoyed field missions. Now, he began to.

"Right, then," she said with a confident smile. "Off we go."

As surprising as it might sound, the confident smile in Donna's face gave Ianto his own smile, as he nodded. He was ready for the even-more-fun part of this trip.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 8:09 pm

Jenny bounced a little, excited that they were going to have an adventure together. Her, her dad, Donna and Ianto, off to find the source of a problem. This time with a lot less shooting. "Here we go again!" She grinned at her dad and Donna, and took Ianto's hand, squeezing it as she grinned up at him.

The lift bumped to a halt at Launch Bay Alpha, and since Jenny was closest to the doors, she peeked out cautiously as they slid open. She didn't see any of the darts, and she didn't see anyone else either. "Looks clear. Let's go find our cruise."
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 8:30 pm

The Doctor smiled at Jenny. "I think it docks somewhere over to our left," he told her as they cautiously exited the lift.

He turned back to face the purple-clad waiter and the other two frightened-looking people that had been sharing their lift.

"Find somewhere with good solid doors and stay safe," he told them. The waiter nodded and wished them luck, before the doors shut tightly behind them, whisking it's remaining passengers away.

"There she is." The Doctor pointed to a small hover cruise ship that was docked to the left of the platform. It's silvery exterior gleamed a reddish-orange colour in the light of the setting sun. The second sun would re-emerge shortly. Night was never long here. The writing across the hull of the ship declared Crystal Cruises.

The Doctor set off at a steady pace, keeping an eye on the mountain-view for any danger in the form of small silver darts.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 8:35 pm

Ianto followed them, covering their back, secretly wishing the Doctor wasn't against guns, because it really would make him feel safer if he was holding his piece right now. He looked around for darts, or clouds, or anything strange and potentially harmful, but could find nothing, so far. Still, better safe than sorry, and he ended up doing a 180 turn at one point.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 8:56 pm

Ianto looked as nervous as Donna felt. She was better at hiding it because she knew that soon, the adrenaline would kick in and she wouldn't have time to be afraid. She watched him watch their surroundings and smiled. Protective, she thought, and then he did a complete turnaround. And thorough...

"Oi..." she said gently, touching Ianto's arm as she walked behind Jenny and the Doctor. "You're safe with us," she said reassuringly before giving him a genuine smile. "The Doctor always finds a way to make it right and your girlfriend's not so bad, either," she added with a wink.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 9:06 pm

Ianto smiled politely at Donna, nodding in thankfulness for her reassuring attitude.

"I know, but I'm Torchwood, it comes as second nature to be suspicious and cautious, too." He said, quick to keep looking around instead of looking at Donna as he spoke. They had reached the ship, now, anyway, and Ianto waited for everyone to finally get in before he could allow himself to.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 9:14 pm

Jenny had jogged ahead to the ship, and circled about it to make sure there wasn't anything hiding in wait. About now she was really wanting a flamethrower, or a nice large gun...though what good guns would do against the darts, she didn't know.

Since there wasn't anything there, she waited at the door for everyone else to get there, then followed them aboard. Well, except for Ianto, who was being stubborn about being last; she finally shrugged and let him be last aboard, it wasn't that hard even if she felt like she should be looking after him and not the other way 'round.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Wed Jul 02, 2008 9:26 pm

The doors to the cruise ship slid open gently at the push of a button and they stepped inside. The cabin was cosy, decked out in warm colours and with several rows of comfy arm chairs for passengers.

Once inside the ship, The Doctor seemed to address the room in general. "Hi there. I'm The Doctor, this is Jenny, Ianto and Donna. I don't know if you've noticed, but there's a situation going on - little metallic darts swarming this way - and we really need to get to the Ranges."

There was a pause, as the Doctor finished speaking, and for a moment it seemed nothing would happen. Then a slightly tinny-sounding, almost childish, female voice filled the room. "My name is CrySS: Crystal Powered Sentient Ship. How very exciting! I'll take you!"

"Thank you, CrySS!" The Doctor said, as CrySS added, "For your personal safety, please clear the doorway and take your seats."
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Fri Jul 04, 2008 7:13 pm

After they were introduced to CrySS, Jenny bounced to one of the chairs and sat, looking around in amazement. A real live sentient ship, how brilliant is that? And it -or she- was excited to be going on adventure with them, too! Wonderful, wasn't it? Wonderful enough to distract her, temporarily, from the problem of the dart swarms.

"Thanks for helping us out, CrySS, really fantastic of you!"
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Sat Jul 05, 2008 7:50 am

Ianto looked up, smiling, as he heard the voice. He had never seen a sentient vehicle before, and it was quite strange. Stranger, even, was the fact that it seemed to be of unlimited AI programming, and that it was actually excited to take them to the mountains.

"Hi, uhh...CrySS. Thank you." He said, feeling quite stupid but still excited, and if it weren't for darts chasing people and trying to kill them, those would be deemed as the best holidays ever.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Sat Jul 05, 2008 10:16 am

Donna smiled a bit wanly as CrySS spoke. Her childlike voice reminded Donna distinctly of Cal. While she didn't remember an awful lot about about The Library, she remembered the little girl's face on the computer and her youthful voice. She vaguely remembered being saved. Her husband; her children. CrySS's voice brought it all back and she closed her eyes for a moment, saying nothing, before following CrySS's directions to take a seat.

Finally, she looked over at the Doctor. "All right, then...what's the plan? Even if we find their swarm, I'm not sure I understand how that's going to help us stop them...without killing them, somehow," she said with a small frown. She knew that the Doctor wouldn't kill unless he had to and the last thing she wanted was to witness him reliving the incident with the Racnoss.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Sat Jul 05, 2008 9:02 pm

"All right, then...what's the plan? Even if we find their swarm, I'm not sure I understand how that's going to help us stop them...without killing them, somehow."

The Doctor strapped himself into a seat near the front windows. "The plan is to find where the darts come from and talk to whoever or whatever is producing them. I don't think they could be sentient by themselves. They're acting more like a hive mind and every hive has a queen. We're going to find their queen."

As he spoke, the cruise ship started take off procedures, engines humming to life, before CrySS steered them out into the open sky, setting a course for the heart of The Crystal Ranges.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Sat Jul 05, 2008 9:07 pm

"The plan is to find where the darts come from and talk to whoever or whatever is producing them. I don't think they could be sentient by themselves. They're acting more like a hive mind and every hive has a queen. We're going to find their queen."

Donna nodded. She completely agreed that it looked as though they were behaving in such a fashion, but there was no need to repeat it back to the Doctor. "Yeah, but...when we find their queen, what do we do? Try to talk her down? Find out why she's sending them to kill people?" she asked doubtfully.

There was one thing that Donna both loved and hated about the Doctor and it was the way he wanted to try to end things with absolutely no violence. While it was a good thing, it tended to make the road from point A to point B much, much more difficult and scary, in Donna's eyes.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Sat Jul 05, 2008 9:11 pm

Finding the queen of a swarm made much sense, indeed, to Ianto as well. Although the thought of finding, perhaps, a giant metal dart seemed a little strange, he would go along with it, so long as no one got killed. He understood that the Doctor did not like violence, and he respected that, but his gun was at the ready in any case. As always.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Sat Jul 05, 2008 9:18 pm

"Yeah, but...when we find their queen, what do we do? Try to talk her down? Find out why she's sending them to kill people?"

"Yeah, pretty much. That's the plan so far," the Doctor replied unhelpfully.

After a moment of silence, CrySS spoke: "Looks like we have company." Another swarm of darts was making it's way from the mountain. They headed straight for their cruise ship at a startling pace, but didn't attack, instead spinning around to fly beside them and effectively blocking the view for all the passengers. "They will only allow me to fly where they want." The ship's voice had crept even higher, as if excited or scared.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Sat Jul 05, 2008 9:59 pm

Jenny had been listening to everyone else talk, and wishing she had a gun. Not because it would make her feel better, but because she was terribly afraid it would be necessary. Oh, she trusted her father to be able to talk most things down - look what he'd done to two armies on her very first day! But still, some people (of any sort) wouldn't listen, and she wanted to be prepared in case whatever was behind all this wouldn't listen. Because she'd really rather not lose her dad, or Donna, or (especially) Ianto...and dying herself kinda sucked too.

She shook her head, trying to get the depressing thoughts out, just in time to listen to CrySS inform them about the second swarm. Jenny rather thought CrySS was scared at being surrounded and forced to go to a destination she didn't control, and tried to soothe her. "It's going to be all right, CrySS. It's a bit rude of those darts, I know, but just go where they want you to, because I don't want you getting hurt."
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:01 pm

"They will only allow me to fly where they want."

"It's going to be all right, CrySS. It's a bit rude of those darts, I know, but just go where they want you to, because I don't want you getting hurt."


"Jenny's right, CrySS," Donna reassured after Jenny had spoken. "Follow their path; we'll be okay."

And as convincing as she thought she sounded, she felt the fear she heard in CrySS's voice. It was nothing new, though. Adventures with the Doctor always started this way - relaxing and fun, then running into trouble along the way. She was getting used to it and once the adrenaline kicked in, she wouldn't have time to be afraid. She just hoped it happened soon, because if the sentient ship was afraid, then maybe Donna had a real reason to feel that way as well.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Tue Jul 08, 2008 3:12 am

The Doctor put on his glasses and peered out the windows, taking the opportunity to get his first good look at the darts. Their silvery bodies were perfectly formed; no trace of screws, seams or indents. Just a seamless dart-like shape made out of a shimmery metallic substance. They were flying so closely packed together that they obscured any other chance at seeing where they were going.

"They don't appear to be attacking, so I'm assuming they're an escort. CrySS, does your instrumentation allow you to plot where we're headed to? Do you have any idea of where they're taking us?"

"Into the mountains. They are leading us on a straight line, that will see us fly straight into the mountains," CrySS replied.
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PostSubject: Re: Short Drops and Sudden Stops [Continued...]   Tue Jul 08, 2008 4:26 pm

"Take me to your leader..." Donna joked feebly. She let out a sigh. The darts hadn't had any issues with attacking them when they were in the restaurant, minding their own business, so what made them change their mind when they were being actively pursued?

"Doctor, why would they lead us?" she asked. "I mean, I would think that they'd want to stop us, if not attack," she thought aloud. Was it the sentient ship they wanted? That had been the only change, after all. Donna lowered her voice, leaning over to the Doctor. "Is it us that they want...or CrySS?" she whispered, not wanting CrySS to hear and panic. "That's the only difference. They attacked us...but they're leading her. I mean...yeah?"
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