She had been forcefully marched down those stairs and now they’d rudely shoved her into the dungeon and closed the door, locking it with a loud echoing ominous CLANK and walked away laughing. Aisha pulled herself to her feet and looked out of the small barred window in the cell door. It was a definite medieval dungeon, and the technology that the inhabitants had somehow acquired didn’t seem to be being used down here… she thanked Rassilon for that, it meant she’d have a slightly easier time unlocking the primitive mass of bolts… but not too much. She wished she had some kind of sonic tool like the Doctor or Sarah Jane… she thrust both of her hands into her jacket pockets, looking for some bit of wire or something.
“Who’s there?” hissed a voice from behind her.
Aisha jumped and spun round, from the shadows came a peasant woman, half-starving and wild-eyed. Aisha backed off as the woman frowned.
“You’re one of them,” she hissed.
“O-one of whom?” Aisha enquired.
“You showed up in a flash of light in that fancy silver egg of yours and think you can just come in and order us around!” she hissed at Aisha, coming closer. “Brainwashed the people and our king with that shadowy voiced stone, and gave them evil silver instruments of the Devil!”
“… Oh?” Aisha said, her voice going slightly higher as she realised that she was dealing with someone who was obviously angry and that maybe she was in danger of having to fight this woman.
The woman stopped, looking puzzled and considered Aisha. Then she spoke again, but calmer this time.
“Your voice, it betrays the fact that you don’t know of what I speak,” she said. “But you are obviously not one of the village or indeed from the villages around us… so who are you?”
“Would you believe one of a time travelling duo who just wound up having our transport dragged into this time zone and got separated?” Aisha asked, with an uneasy grin, then registered the bewilderment on the woman’s face. “No? Thought not… anyway, my partner and I have been following the ‘silver egg’ across the country. We’re… we’re devil hunters you see.”
“So why do you wear men’s clothes?” the woman asked, indicating to Aisha’s trousers.
“A Devil Hunter must be constantly aware,” Aisha said, in a convincing voice. “My garments fool the devils into thinking I am a man so they do not try to possess my… erm, weak female body.”
“I see, it is for protection,” the woman nodded.
“Indeed,” Aisha nodded, hoping she wouldn’t blow it. The woman seemed to be warming to her.
The woman turned and nodded to someone in the shadows Aisha could not see, then several men stepped from the shadows. They all stared at Aisha for a moment, making her feel very uneasy. Then they all turned to the woman.
“She is not one of them,” the woman said. “We now have a demon hunter to add to our army.”
The men cheered, Aisha tapped her on the shoulder causing the woman to jump and spin round in alarm.
“Erm, sorry,” Aisha said. “But… ‘army’?”
“Against the heathens that came in the silver egg!” one of the men hissed.
“We were locked here after refusing to submit to their demonic devices!” another said.
“That is why you came to our village?” the woman asked.
“Yes, yes of course,” Aisha reassured her. “But… I’m not sure if it’s safe to let you fight them.”
“We are prepared to die!”
“For the glory of God!”
As they cheered Aisha rolled her eyes.
“Humans… I’d forgotten how driven and stupid you can sometimes be in a mob…” she sighed. “Alright, I’ll help you but leave the statue behind the King to my partner and I. Okay?”
“Why should we?” One man asked.
“Because we’re professionals,” Aisha said, before finding a length of wire in her pocket. “And I can get us out of here.”
“How? We have tried young one,” the woman said.
“I’ll use my… erm… abilities,” Aisha said before going over to the lock.
Adric was backed up against the door he’d come through, scrabbling for the handle as the Slaver approached.
“TELL ME WHERE SHE IS!” it bellowed at him.
“H-how would I know anything about her?” Adric stuttered.
“She has been in contact with you!” the Slaver hissed. “I know. Now tell me!”
Adric’s hand finally found the doorknob and he opened the door, falling backwards as the Slaver leapt for him. He fought the alien on top of him, pinned to the floor by the cloaked figure.
Suddenly he heard boots marching up the corridor, and realised that this scuffle was causing a lot of noise.
“The soldiers are coming!” he hissed to the Slaver.
But the alien continued to pin him, and no matter which way Adric twisted he found himself stuck. He’d forgotten how limited being physical was… The door burst open and he heard the soldiers coming in.
“There! The devil child and…”
“What IS that thing?”
“Capture it! It must be another demon!” came the order.
At this the Slaver snarled and leapt at the soldiers, meaning Adric had to roll out of the way of the feet as the humans swarmed round the alien. He quickly managed to slip around the crowd and sprinted down the corridor, trying to guess and gauge where Aisha would be being held…
But then he stopped… something felt wrong. In the air, it wasn’t just the medieval background combined with the advanced weaponry… it was something else. Something much worse, something dark, twisted and strangely familiar like eating a favourite food that had gone off…
“We meet again…” a voice suddenly whispered.
Adric spun round in shock, ready to fight whoever was there… but there was no one. The voice laughed, inside his head.
“I can see you but you won’t see me!” it taunted. “Not there anyway… you clod.”
“Who are you?” Adric asked the air, suspecting the answer but dreading it. “Come out!”
“I’ll be in the throne room if you want to fight me again!” the voice laughed.
Then the oppressive air was gone from the corridor, but it left behind in Adric a fire, a fear, adrenaline pumping through his veins. He knew that voice. He knew now who was behind the abduction of the TARDIS and the capture of Aisha. And he knew why they were now after him and why they called him a ‘Devil Child’. Because this enemy expected him to still be dead…