Fitz watched from around a corner as the Doctor and, who he assumed was Phaze in disguise, were roughly led away by the gang. He had a sudden urge to run up and start throwing a few punches when he saw how brutally they were being handled when he nearly had a heart attack as a hand came to rest on his shoulder. Jumping and turning around, Fitz saw the man that had been shot earlier, still looking pale and weak, but much better than a few hours ago, with Anji standing behind him.
“Calm down, Fitz. I’m not going to hurt you,” the man said.
“It’s alright Fitz,” Anji assured him. “It’s a long story, but it turns out this is the Doctor.”
Fitz nodded as he calmed himself, glad that someone had stopped him, and said, “Yeah, Peri filled me in already.” He eyed the Doctor and noticed that he was favoring his right side as his hand rested there. His jacket was missing, but he still wore his bloodstained shirt.
“Where is she?” the Doctor asked him urgently.
“She’s fine. We found your TARDIS and I had her wait there while I looked for you and my Doctor.” Suddenly he remembered that he was about to follow after his Doctor.
“Look,” Fitz said, taking in how badly this Doctor looked. “You should take Anji with you back to your TARDIS and check on Peri. I’ve gotta go after my Doctor and Phaze.”
“I’m coming with you,” Anji said.
“No, I think that Fitz is right,” the Doctor said. “If you hadn’t been so insistent, I wouldn’t have let you come with me as it was. This just isn’t a very good place to take you girls to.” He turned back to Fitz and said, “I can come with you if you want.”
Fitz wanted to say yes, but knew that he shouldn’t. “No, you still don’t look too good, and I’m not surprised after seeing what you looked like a while ago. Besides, Anji shouldn’t be walking back there by herself.”
The Doctor nodded. “Good luck,” he said as he gripped Fitz’s shoulder and gave him a squeeze. “And thank you for helping Peri.”
“Hey, what are friends for?” Fitz said with a smile.
“I certainly look forward to meeting you, Fitz,” he replied with a similar smile and then turned and walked away slowly.
“Really Fitz,” Anji said before she followed. “Do try and be careful.”
Peri was pacing the inside of the TARDIS as she wrung her hands. She knew that she needed to stay put but she could help but replay the image of the Doctor right after he was shot. At first he just seemed completely shocked as he looked down at his side and saw his nice cream-colored shirt becoming saturated with blood.
Even in her panic of being dragged away by the strange burly men, she was able to see as her Doctor’s face melted from shock to fear to pain. He looked as if he was trying to help her, trying to follow, but his legs just wouldn’t respond. The last she saw of him as the car sped away, he was sinking to the ground, his leg completely giving out.
And now she was waiting in here to find out if he was even alive or not.
She nearly jumped right out his her skin when the TARDIS door suddenly burst open and a strange woman came rushing in. But Peri didn’t even have time to ask who she was and what she was doing there before the Doctor came stumbling in behind her, clearly out of breath and shaky.
The girl turned around and took his arm and helped him over to a chair in the corner. Peri was quick to join them. “Doctor! You’re alright!”
“Yes, yes,” he said as he sat down. “I was lucky that my other self and his companions turned up when they did.”
“So was I,” Peri reminded him. Suddenly she realized that Fitz hadn’t come back with them. “Where’s Fitz! Did he find you?”
“Yeah,” Anji said. “He’s got to go and help our Doctor now,” She explained. “I’m Anji by the way.”
Peri shook Anji’s offered hand and said, “Peri. And thanks for helping us out.”
“You’re welcome,” she answered with a smile.
“So now what do we do?” Peri asked the Doctor who still seemed to be catching his breath.
“Well, we can’t exactly go out there right now,” he said. “We just barely made it in here ahead another gang.”
“What is wrong with this place?” Peri cried.
Anji shook her head and said, “My Doctor said something about a nuclear war messing around with the human’s DNA. That’s what’s got them all screwed up.”
The Doctor got up and went over to the controls and began fiddling with them as he said, “But that doesn’t really make a lot of sense. True, radiation can have some very devastating effects to DNA, especially after long-term exposure. But the levels here are barely anything above normal. By my readings, there hasn’t been any nuclear warfare on this planet in at least seventy years.”
“But what Fitz was telling me, this period is only supposed to have existed for about thirty years and the war was fairly recent,” Peri said.
“Well, it would appear that Fitz’s information was wrong.”
“Which mean’s our Doctor’s information was wrong,” Anji said.
“Maybe he was just reading what was supposed to happen and something changed,” Peri suggested.
The Doctor looked thoughtful for a second before he said, “It’s possible. As I’m sure you’re both aware, history is not entirely fix. But this seems to be a very large deviation from what things should be.”
“So what might have caused it?” Anji asked.
The Doctor began to fiddle with his ship for a while more before he straitened and sighed. “I was afraid of that,” he said.
“What?” the girls asked in unison.
“Psyonic energy, and a lot of it.”
“What’s that mean?” Peri asked.
“It means that someone is purposefully manipulating the human minds to remain violent and animalistic.”
“Then, it’s not the radiation,” Anji concluded.
“Initially, it was. There was a war here as I said, about seventy years ago. But the effects from that should have died out with that generation. But someone has been manipulating things so that later generations haven’t recovered.”
“But, doesn’t that mean that Fitz and the Doctor might become effected as well?” Anji asked worriedly.
“Fitz, probably,” the Doctor said. “But Time Lords are not so easily effected by this type of thing. He should be alright.”
“I’m not so sure,” Anji said with a shake of her head. “I suppose I can’t really tell you too much since it could mess with your timeline, but he’s had… let’s say some heath issues and he’s not quite the Time Lord that he was.”
The Doctor looked at her for a moment and said, “And whatever has happened, you think will make him more susceptible?”
Anji nodded, “I fairly sure.”
“That puts all of them in very great danger,” the Doctor concluded. “Phaze especially.”
“What do we do?” Peri asked.
“We’ll have to find the Psyonic generator and shut it down,” the Doctor said. “That will clear up a lot.”
“Great, where do we begin?” Anji ask, coming to stand beside the Doctor. Peri walked over and stood on his other side, waiting for instructions.
The Doctor looked at each girl and then smiled, “Ok, first I think I can trace the power signature to within a block of the generator. The energy is very difficult to get an exact fix on, but that should narrow things down a bit.”
As he spoke, the girls watched as his hands danced across the panel, working his magic.
Phaze and the Doctor were taken to a rusted out old warehouse and dragged to an old storage room. “You’ll wait here while we let our boss know about you,” the leader, Kard, told them as his men cruelly shoved them in.
The Doctor got up immediately and turned to them, his face red with suppressed anger. “You tell him to get down here!” he yelled at them, his fists clenching. “I’ve got a few things to say to him!”
The men just laughed at him and slammed the door shut, barring it from the other side.
“Doctor?” Phaze said tentatively.
He turned around to face her, still enraged. But when he caught the look on her face, it was as if his anger suddenly dissolved. “Huh,” he said, after a moment with a look of confusion.
“Doctor, what’s wrong?” Phazed asked. His fury was so out of character that it had completely taken her by surprise. And now it was as if he had flipped a switch and turned it off.
“I’m not sure,” he said running a hand through his hair. “I’ve been a little out of sort, haven’t I?”
She nodded in response. “I’ve never seen you so angry before.”
He sighed as he put his fingers to the bridge of his nose and said to his hand, “I know. I can feel it, just behind my eyes. It’s almost like a pressure that is trying to get out.”
“The radiation?” Phaze asked.
He shook his head, “No, the levels aren’t dangerous anymore or you would have been feeling it long before me. But something is happening.”
“What do we do?” she asked.
He went and sat down in a corner and pressed the palms of his hands against his eyes. “Wait, I guess,” he said wearily.
“But what about you?” she insisted.
“Phaze! I don’t know! Just please stop pestering me!” he snapped.
She stared at him, startled at his outburst before sitting down in the opposite corner in silence.
A while later the Doctor said in a slightly more subdued voice, “I’m sorry. I don’t know what’s coming over me.”
“I think that whatever is effecting the men here, is getting to you too,” she said gently.
He was quiet for a moment before saying, “Yes, I should have seen that.”
“It’s not only making you violent, but it’s clouding your mind as well.”
“Maybe allowing ourselves to be captured wasn’t the wisest of moves under the circumstances,” he said.
“No, I don’t think that it was this time. But I didn’t see any change in you until they already had us.”
“We might be getting closer to the source then,” he said as he stood up and began to pace the room agitated. “Something has to be producing this. But I was sure that the behavior was normal for this time period. I had no idea that there was something else going on.”
“Like I said, your mind is getting clouded too.”
“You did? Oh yes, you did,” he said distractedly.
Phaze had to keep herself from having an uneasy shiver. She was watching the Doctor deteriorate in front of her and he was the one who had a plan. But now that she was thinking about it, what would meeting the gang’s boss have to do with finding Fitz and Peri?
“Doctor? Why did you decide to allow ourselves to be capture?”
He stopped himself in his pacing and glared at her. “Why? Are you questioning my intentions? I have a few moments of weakness and you think that you can’t trust me anymore?” he nearly growled at her.
She stood up in her corner, feeling, well, cornered, and tried to remain calm as she replied, “No Doctor. I trust you. I was just wondering what your plan was.”
“So you think that I’m incompetent then?!” he snapped as he took a step towards her. “Untrustworthy and incompetent! Some loyalty you have,” he was right next to her now and she saw his fists clenching again.
She tried to shrink back further into the wall as she nearly pleaded, “Doctor, please calm down.”
“Calm! I’ll show you…” he brought his fist up but as she threw her hand up to protect her face, he suddenly dropped it and staggered back.
“Oh god,” he whispered. “You’re right to not trust me.”
Phaze couldn’t do anything to comfort him right now; she was too busy trying to not curl in a ball and cry.
Fitz was feeling really angry. That was the best way that his befuddled mind could explain it. He was furious, and he didn’t know why. He had managed to follow after the men taking his friends without being seen, but only just. He had to keep himself from racing up and starting a brawl.
Some part of him knew that this wasn’t right, that he should be afraid for himself and his friends, but he shouldn’t want to be this violent in retaliation.
The further that he went, the more difficult it was becoming for him to hold back. It began to feel as if there was something inside of him that was trying to get out.
He sat for a very long time in the shadows of that warehouse after the gang had left. He knew that the Doctor and Phaze were just on the other side of that door and all he had to do was open it and they could all escape. But right now, it was all he could do to hold himself still and not find the nearest weapon and go on some rampage.
He began to try and concentrate on his friends. The Doctor was his oldest friend and had saved his life countless times. He had to pull himself together to get him and Phaze out…
He thought of her and her face came to mind. She was quite attractive. Still very young and very…
He shook his head, what was wrong with him?
But his mind was too far-gone to dismiss it and before he even realized it, he was clawing at the door, unbarring it to get inside at her.
“It’s there,” the Doctor said as he pointed at a spot on a map of the layout of the town. It had only taken him a second to pull up the area of the generator that was producing the psyonic energy.
“In that block?” Anji asked as she leaned over his shoulder.
“Yes. I can land the TARDIS there and I’ll have a look around.”
“Not by yourself, you’re not,” Peri told him.
He sighed as he began to set the TARDIS in motion, “We’ve had this discussion, and you girls can’t come out with me.”
“And you are supposed to still be in bed,” Anji snapped as she rested a hand on her hip. “I guess we’re all going to do something we’re not supposed to.”
The Doctor half smiled, “You remind me of someone I used to know,” he muttered. “Alright. But please, if you really want to be a help, try not to be seen.”
The TARDIS landed and he opened the door. He turned and hurried outside as Peri leaned over to Anji and said, “Traveling with him… how can you help but get noticed?”
Anji smiled with a nod and they both followed him outside. But as they stepped out, the Doctor turned and walked past them, back into the TARDIS. They exchanged a glance and then followed him again.
“What are you doing?” Peri asked as the Doctor disappeared through the other side of the control room.
“I was just thinking,” his voice came to them from the next room. “I might have something that can help Fitz and the other me. At least for a little while.”
He came back with something small flat in his hand.
“What is it?”
“A Delta wave emitter. I once used it on Nyssa when she need an extended period of restful sleep.”
“We’re going to knock them out?” Peri asked.
“No, if I dial down the power enough, it should cancel out the negative psyonic energy for a while without incapacitating.”
“So if they’ve become violent…” Anji said.
“They’ll get better?” Peri finished.
“That’s the hope. At least long enough for us to either shut down the generator, or get them back to the TARDIS. The TARDIS is able to filter the energy out and should work even better than the d-wave emitter, which only cancels it temporarily.
“So what are we waiting for?” Peri asked.
The Doctor smiled and said, “that’s the spirit,” and headed outside again, Anji and Peri close behind.
Phaze was already on edge when she heard the door being unbolted. She was already trapped in a room with a man who was slowly loosing his mind and becoming more violent with each passing minute, now more were about to come through that door.
She couldn’t bring herself to tell the Doctor in his current state that she wasn’t able to hold her disguise up for much longer. She was beginning to feel the stretch again and she certainly didn’t want to have what she experienced on Ghont again with a bleed over of these violent minds.
The Doctor was huddled in a corner again, head buried in his hands as he tried to fight off whatever was coming over him. She wasn’t even sure if he heard the door open.
At first, she let out a sigh of relief when she saw Fitz enter the room. But then she saw the look in his eyes as he saw her and she knew that he wasn’t there to save her, at least, not now…
He saw her, leaning against the wall in a corner. It was perfect. She had nowhere to run. He sauntered over to her, confident in his prize.
“Fitz… Fitz, it’s me, Phaze,” she tried to reason with him. “Something’s happening to you. This isn’t who you are,” she explained as he neared. She was beginning to panic as she saw that her words were having absolutely no effect on him.
He got to her, and roughly grabbed her shoulders, pinning her against the wall. She gasped as her head knocked back on the solid surface. “Fitz… please…” she cried.
Suddenly a yell that sounded more animal than human came from across the room as the Doctor launched himself at Fitz. Phaze barely recognized either of her friends as the Doctor slammed Fitz against the next wall.
Fitz was quick to retaliate, throwing a punch in the Doctor’s face and knocking him back.
“Please, stop it you two,” she said to them, but they couldn’t hear her anymore.
Before she knew what was happening, punches were flying. The Doctor knocked Fitz to the ground and then kicked him through the still open door.
Fitz managed to avoid the next kick and grabbed the Doctor’s foot pulling him to the ground as well. He got high enough above the Time Lord to deliver another solid punch to his head. The Doctor spit out a few drops of blood from his mouth and used a right hook to knock Fitz away.
Climbing over him, the Doctor put his knees in Fitz’s back while wrapping his arm around his neck, slowly choking him.
Phaze ran out of the room and saw the Doctor as he was about to win this fight by suffocating Fitz. “Doctor! Stop! It’s Fitz!” she yelled at him, as she tried to pry him away.
The Doctor knocked her away with his other arm without so much as loosening his hold on Fitz
Fitz was beginning to turn red that was heading towards a freighting shade of blue and still the Doctor viciously squeeze his arm around his throat. “Doctor!” Phaze screamed at him, trying once again to pull him away.
Suddenly he let go and fell back. Leaving Fitz nearly passed out on the floor. “Phaze?” the said, bewilderedly.
“That’s right, Doctor,” she said, placing a hand on his back. “Hold on to yourself for a while longer.
He saw Fitz lying on the ground, finally blacked out. He was bloodied and several bruises were beginning to form. “What have I done?” he asked.
“You saved me,” she answered. “Fitz was beginning effected too and was about to attack me.”
The Doctor shook his head, “No, that’s not why I attacked him.”
“It’s all I need to know right now,” Phaze told him. “We need to get out of here before you loose it again. “I think Fitz can take care of himself for right now. We can help him once we figure out what’s going on.”
But the Doctor was cradling his head in pain again as he gasped at her, “No, I can’t fight it much longer. You need to get away… now!”
He made to get up and grab at her. But he fought it back just enough to cause himself to stumble. Phaze turned and bolted. Somehow, everything that she knew she could rely on was crashing down around her.