There is something in my eye…
I Don’t Know Where I Am.
Caught like flies…trapped in the World-Wide Web
Help Me. I Don’t Know Where I Am.
Savior of Worlds Once.
I Don’t Know Where I Am - I Don’t Know —
- Not kind…doesn’t help people.
Please. Help Me. Doctor.
I don’t know where I am
I DON’T KNOW WHERE I AM -
We Did It Together. You And Me.
Signed — The
“ —in my eye,” Amy muttered, rubbing, rubbing at her left eye; flare of sympathetic pain behind his own cornea, as he wrapped a firm hand around her wrist, pulling her palm away so he could look into her eyes
Eyes of an Angel
make sure she hadn’t done more damage with her fussing.
Something in my eye -
“You’ll be fine,” he said finally, releasing her captured wrist with a shiver of memory (too many memories), spooked even as there was nothing but a speck of dust that had likely long washed out. The design of the human eye was genius that way, really. “Just stop messing with it.”
“Now you sound like —”
“ — my Mum. Didn’t know fussing was part of the package.”
He blinked in confusion, momentarily thrown by the mention of her mother. He thought for sure she would have mentioned —
Never mind. Dual realities. Gets to one occasionally. Especially when said one is…older…than he professes to be. Tottering faculties. That’s it.
“Call it free medical advice. I am called The Doctor, after all,” he teased, turning on one heel, trying to ignore the sense of unease that still clung to him as he put his attention back on the console and the coordinates he had been punching in.
Or had he done that already?
“Right,” Amy smiled, a look of fondness and exasperation that he seemed to get a lot with these last few regenerations. Well. All of them, really. “That’s definitely what you call yourself. So where are we headed next? And don’t say anywhere and everywhere.”
“Fine,” he pouted, trying to look offended when he was actually, secretly pleased by her teasing. His Amelia Jessica Pond. Seared on his hearts. “Where ever you like, then.”
“There is too much information, he’s overloading the system. We might have to —”
“Then hook him into another databank and crosswire it into the main server. We’ll download it all directly if we have to, bypass the firewalls. Hell with regulations — not like he’s a Wyntrium anyway.”
“But Sir, that could kill him. Didn’t command request —”
“Are you questioning my orders, Ensign?”
“Good. Get it done. Report to me when he is fully integrated.”
“Very good, Sir. Right away.”
“Future echoes,” he mused, fussing over the consoles with a handkerchief, stopping only to blow a spot of imaginary dust away from the vectoring controls.
“Future what?” Clara asked, breezing into the doors as she always did, complete confidence in every step, smile crooked at one corner of her mouth. “Are you talking to yourself again?”
“Sometimes that’s the only intelligent conversation to be found,” the Time Lord grumbled, shooting a glare at Clara when the TARDIS protested with a wheezing groan. “Sorry, dear — I didn’t mean to exclude you.”
“Well, I only just got here,” Clara said brightly. “And that doesn’t answer the question.”
Oldest Question in the Universe.
One that cannot be answered.
“Future what?” She prodded, literally prodding him — two fingers poking into his bicep before she spun away again.
“Glimpses into the distant future — things that might be or never will be presenting themselves almost like a three-dimensional film. Only with more dimensions.” He explained, finally raising his head to acknowledge her with a mirror of her crooked smile, fussing about with imaginary dust losing its luster. “In a sense.”
“Would you know if you came across one?” Clara queried, arms crossed and eyebrow raised like she didn’t quite believe that it was an actual phenomena that needed actual explanation.
Her usual stance in other words.
“You might,” he mused. “I dunno, are we in one now?”
“I don’t feel echo-ey,” she shrugged.
“Hmmm,” the Doctor conceded ruefully, tucking the spotless handkerchief into his back pocket. “I don’t either. Is it Wednesday already?”
Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursday afternoons.
“Just come off Tuesday evening, so I suppose so,” Clara laughed.
Temporal dipping points…
“Well, time for adventure then,” he clapped his hands together and spun around the console, setting the sequence for a Wednesday adventure in time to the sounds of her tinkling laughter.
Listen to me.
Nothing could defeat it
Burn down your world
Nothing could stop it
Don’t you know where they came from?
Unlocking from within
Whole universe — total event collapse.
Every second, every moment in history -
There’s got to be a point to that I’ll get back to you
Listen to me.
Something in my eye
Listen to me!!
Doesn’t help people
I’m so sorry.
I Don’t Know Where I Am.
Get Out Of My Head
Make people better.
GET OUT OF-
“Inquisitors from High Command. They said you were expecting them, Sir.”
“Really? I knew of no inquiries requested.”
“Do you want me to — ”
“No, send them about. I think I know why they’re here. I should have expected this.”
“Nothing, Ensign. Just make sure we have all of our papers in order. We don’t want to look sloppy in front of high command.”
“Yes, Sir. Should we unhook 5247 from the main databanks?”
“No, no — leave him there. Make sure he is secure and that the Sooth-Sayer is on high intensity bombardment. I’m sure they will be more than understanding when they see all the information we have obtained, as well as the extra…uses we have garnered from 5247. You are dismissed.”
It was unusual to have a High Inquisitor from Senior Command come for an inspection in the middle of wartime to begin with. It was even more unusual for that same HI to arrive with not one, but two advisors; those advisors carrying their own ranks and insignia from the upper echelons of Command. Commendante Rychtell didn’t know whether to be flattered or frightened, but he figured a good dose of both wouldn’t hurt. And from the way they carried themselves and their grim, almost blank faces, that was a brilliant tactic and a stellar way to conduct himself.
He had nothing but confidence in his command and his people, so he was sure the Federation would find nothing to quibble about with his paperwork or the well-oiled machine that was his forces. There was only one issue on which he and his officers would hesitate, so of course that was what the HI and her contingent were there to inspect and oversee.
It was a good thing he has such trust in his people and their diligence, loyalty and unwavering patriotism, otherwise this would be a bit of a sticky one. Either way, if High Command saw fit to send a higher (highest) ranking Inquisitor (even without backup of other high-ranking officials), this was going to be a delicate situation no matter which side of the issue they fell on.
After the initial (standard) tour of the base, the HI gave her approval, though her face never relaxed one iota. She scanned the head-quarter command center with a sharp eye, the other covered with a curious patch that gave her a more menacing quality than Rychtell hoped was intended; his nerves were worn enough. The HI and her cohorts were curiously quiet and overly stiff, their manners imposing as if to peer at his base from a lofty height. Which, all fairness, was true — but didn’t do much for him or his officers. Her Assessor and Battle-Cleric also wore the strange eye-patches, their insignia placing their ranks alongside the Inquisitor’s in chain of command, their movements and terse communication showing impeccable restraint and decorum. Even for such young people as they were, it was no doubt how they came into their positions.
“The Commendante Overseer will be pleased,” the HI said coolly, her one blue eye boring into his own, her mouth denoting pleasure that the rest of her seemed to negate. “Federation needs more bases of this type during wartime. Though from what I’ve heard, you keep a tight command even outside of open warfare.”
“Yes, High Inquisitor,” the Commendante answered, adopting (unconsciously) her stiff manner of body and speech. “You will find all those under my command the most loyal and hardworking in all of Wyntrium, if not in all of the Federation Planetary Cores. I could not be prouder of them.”
“And who in your ranks found 5247?” The HI demanded softly, her one lone blue eye glittering with some unnamed intent that nonetheless sent a shiver up Rychtell’s spine. “After all, that is why we are here.”
“That would be Private Lysel Dewynter, High Inquisitor,” he replied, gesturing to one of the men at a communications hub. “A man worthy of Wyntrium, whose career I can see going far.”
The young man stopped within a few feet of the Assessor, his stance not indicating one frisson of nerves, for which Rychtell envied him. The Assessor nodded thoughtfully at the HI, leaning into the space of the Battle-Cleric as he whispered something into her ear. A signal from the HI had the redheaded woman moving closer to inspect Dewynter, her one green eye not as piercing as the Inquisitor’s, but no less coolly intelligent for all that.
“Private Dewynter,” she said eventually, seeming to take note of his respectful attention, his eyes far ahead as he waited for her to speak fully. “How is it you came across 5247?”
“I found him in the battle-field, Assessor,” he replied, keeping his words minimal, yet informative. “He was cooperative, but secretive. He refused to tell me what he was doing upon the field. As per orders, I brought him in.”
“I see. Very good, Private Dewynter,” she said smoothly. “You may be at ease.”
She nodded to the Cleric who approached Dewynter to ask his own questions — condition of the prisoner 5247 both on the battle-field and when he arrived at base; saving the obvious assessment for himself when they finally arrived at holding and main interrogation. After a few follow-up questions by the HI (who seemed to be satisfied with the verbal report), the Private was dismissed with a crisp return salute by the three high-ranking brass. They talked quietly amongst themselves for a few minutes before turning back to the Commendante as one, their eerie, fluid movements as in sync as if they were truly one entity. A fantastical thought that nonetheless brought a shiver to Rychtell’s spine.
“Right. All holds with the official report, Commendante,” the High Inquisitor said in a carrying, yet cold voice. “Your man is to be commended for his swift response and adherence to proper protocol. You should be very proud — and I will personally oversee his papers to get him moved to Sargent First Class.”
“Thank you, High Inquisitor,” Rychtell said stiffly, filled with warmth and pride once more at his people and their excellence. It was obvious to him and now it seemed it was just as obvious to High Command. He would be well remembered for this alone. “He will be honored, just as I am, Sir.”
“It is as it should be,” the Inquisitor said with an almost dismissive wave of her hand. “Now to the main point of our visit — Prisoner 5247.”
And with that, Rychtell remembered just what else he might go down in history for — he just didn’t know if it would be for good or ill. And from the look on the faces of his commanding officers, he had a bad feeling it wouldn’t be the better option.
I Don’t Know Where I Am
“As you can see, we have him double shielded,” the Commendante explained, noting with some nervous tension the utter stillness of the High Officers, barely a twitch or a blink amongst the three of them as they gazed down into the redesigned interrogation room, the walls artinum-laced to keep the sounds and thoughts in the room muffled from the viewers. “We learned that the hard way, when regular interrogation failed and we initiated the Sooth-Sayer —”
“You learned he was Psy,” the Inquisitor intoned flatly, her one lone eye narrowing as she peered down at the seemingly harmless looking man below. “How big was the blast?”
“It only took out two windows and blew five fuses up in Communications, Sir,” he offered almost thoughtfully, surprised that she knew what the man was, even as he berated himself for such surprise. It was obvious that High Command knew more of what was going on than he did. Par for the course, really. “He seemed to try to direct it where it would do the least harm, though I can’t understand why. The information he was withholding popped up in our vocal alerts when questioning him and we only intended to scan the surface through Soothing, but in the end —”
“He fought you,” the Assessor intoned, her face almost supernaturally blank and placid.
“Yes, Sir,” he confirmed, feeling almost sorry for the Psy-Freak down below, even as he looked upon him with a small shudder of revulsion for all that he was and what he represented. “We were forced to dig deeper and with what we found…well, I’m sure High Command would be interested in the plethora of information we attained. If this man isn’t classified as a War Criminal, I’d be quite surprised. The information he has on battles, tactics — intimate knowledge, I must say — that spans almost a millennia, if not more. To say the least it is quite extraordinary and highly disturbing. In the end we had to override normal procedures and protocol and hook his feeds into the main databanks, relaying the information through firewall switches to keep him from trying to access and download information as we uploaded. It was quite the engineering feat and it put my best people through their paces.”
“What are those wires there?” The Battle-Cleric queried, an almost worried note creeping into his tone, which the Commendante did his darnedest to ignore. It seemed even the most hardened of warriors and officials could be repulsed by this creature, even as they were likely salivating at all the information it contained.
Rychtell, peered down at the Freak, struggling to keep the moue of distaste from his features as he looked upon the anomalous abortion of nature under the security of wires and machines, the Sooth-Sayer itself attached to his temples and wired into his eye-sockets, more wires snaking up and around his arms and legs, monitoring vitals.
His lower torso was held tight by electro-manacles, keeping him a regulation two feet from the floor, while his arms were encased in the subcutaneous attachments that literally bonded him with the databanks the Sooth-Sayer linked into. If he struggled, shocks travelled up his arms and to his hearts, stunning him long enough for the nerve-pulses to paralyze the lower part of his brain-stem, thus halting any further struggles for at least an hour.
Rychtell didn’t know quite which wires the Battle-Cleric was referring to, until he remembered the extra feedback links hooked into the back of the Psy’s spinal column. Three thick cables, one right where the skull attached to the spine, one between his shoulder-blades and the last attached just above his pelvis were linked back into the databanks and had direct access to the main engine and electrical systems. It was genius really — and he was sure he could not only explain the reasons why, but maybe get approval from HC to link him to other bases nearby.
“I’m glad you asked, Sir,” the Commendante said with a small smile of pride. “Those were put in place because not only is 5247 a valuable asset for all the information inside his mind, but the vast resource of energy he seems to produce. We discovered the strange energy emissions when he tried to blast his way out of the Sooth-Sayer device the first time.”
“When you were forced to contain him,” The Inquisitor stated coolly. “Yes, yes. Please do go on, Commendante Rychtell.”
“Yes, Sir,” Rychtell said with a bit of hesitation, taken aback by the icy manner and clipped speech that accompanied it. He felt almost sure they’d be pleased, even with the protocol override. The plethora of value one prisoner had produced was surely more than enough to go seeking more. The war would be won within weeks, if not days. “Upon finding these energy signatures, we learned he was directing them — trying to find a different way of blasting out of the Sooth-Sayer. Obviously if he could not find a way to psychically induce an overload, he would do so with bursts of this strange energy. I don’t know why he chose to do that other than attempt to influence my personnel —”
“He’s a touch-telepath,” the Assessor cut in, her green eye twinkling with something akin to anger. “Please continue.”
“Yes, Sir. Sorry, Sir,” Rychtell said nervously, hoping against hope the next tidbit of information would soothe any distraught feelings. It wasn’t as if 5247 was Federation civilian. If anything he was the enemy, so the slow simmer of tension was confusing to say the least. Maybe he was reading it wrong. High Command was known to be a bit…testy. “I did not mean to wander off the point. A mistake. I shall keep my suppositions to myself from now on.”
“Please do,” the Inquisitor said in a bored tone, though the line of her shoulders said she was anything but bored.
“Yes, Sir,” Rychtell nodded, knowing he had just side-stepped an unseen landmine and was internally breathing a sigh of relief as their focus went back to the man buried beneath machinery below them. “As I said, having been thwarted in the attempt to break out using psionic blasts, he used the shock-system to somehow induce this energy that we observed and he tried to channel it directly into the databanks and the Sooth-Sayer itself. He didn’t seem to be digging for information though — we found no breaches past our firewalls. Instead, it seemed he tried to convince the machines to let him go and barring that, tried to blast his way out.”
“You said he would deliberately use the shock systems?” The Battle-Cleric queried with a raised eyebrow, frown appearing between his eyes and bracketing his mouth. “So he would intentionally shock himself.”
“Yes, Sir. As you know, the system is designed with a relay device. If you struggle, it sends a shock to your heart — two in his case, as you can see by the scans to your left — and when it stops for two beats, the shock tunnels through your nervous system to send a pulse to your cerebral cortex, telling your motor functions to cease. The effects are never any longer than an hour and the shortest amount of time has been recorded, as you know, at ten minutes. But the paralyzer doesn’t seem to work with him. Instead he seemed to draw energy from the shocks and convert it to a different type of energy which he would then use against the machines holding him and recording his information.”
“But that didn’t answer the overall question,” the Battle-Cleric said impatiently. “Why are those cables embedded in his spine and why are you evading by telling me about energy emissions from 5247?”
“Because, Sir — we figured out how to siphon the energy off and convert it back into electrical. Only instead of the getting back the exact amount of electricity used for the shocks themselves, we found we could harness and store almost ten times the amount per surge.” Rychtell explained with no small amount of excitement. “Think about it. This base, right now — is being powered by the energy we have drawn off of him alone. There is enough stored for fifty bases as we speak and he has only been here a month at the most. With him alone, the odds of winning this war have soared. If we could find more like him, our victory is assured. And that is not all, Sirs — along with the mountains of information inside his mind, which is useful enough and then some by itself, we have found a way to hook him in a loop within the main computer banks. He could literally run this base without even being aware that he is doing so. The possibilities of 5247 are endless and extraordinary. All we’d have to do it up the shocks he is receiving to one every hour instead of one every three —”
“Wait, I thought the shocks could only be administered if they struggled,” the High Inquisitor rapped out in an agitated tone, her face white and still as she stared at the Psy-Freak below. The Assessor beside her made a tiny, almost inaudible noise, as the Battle-Cleric only looked more grim, if possible.
“Generally, yes, that it the protocol, Sir,” Rychtell said with some pride and no small amount of fear, their reactions a little more extreme than he expected, but with the full potential of 5247 laid before them, surely they could see that this was all for the best. For Wyntrium, for the Federation itself. “But when we hooked him into the central lines and received two full mega-ton batteries within less than 24 hours…well, he had stopped trying to break the system by then and we had only just realized the full potential. It doesn’t seem to be harming him, if that is the concern, High Inquisitor. He had become unresponsive before we found a way to siphon his energy, unfortunately — and I assure you that we are working on finding a way to either fix or bypass that reaction — but he only receives the best treatment. Food and supplements that would not normally go to prisoners of war. And War Criminals at that.”
“I see,” the Inquisitor said faintly, before spinning on one heel fast enough to stagger Rychtell, her two advisors pulling their focus from the Psy-Freak to her in that eerie single-minded motion that awed and frightened the Commendante from the first moment he had seen them. “Amy, Rory — do you see Them.”
“Nothing so far,” the Battle-Cleric responded crisply. “Looks like this one can’t be laid on Them…yet. Amy?”
“None,” the Assessor said with that same determined, unyielding tone. “Looks like this was good old-fashioned human ingenuity.”
“Agreed,” the Inquisitor nodded, barely glancing at Rychtell as she reached for something beneath her regulation robe.
“Sirs, I don’t understand,” Rychtell stammered, confused and more than a little frightened, their odd manner and speech throwing him completely out of his military stance and thinking for a few seconds.
“Be silent,” the Inquisitor commanded, smiling frost and venom when he complied almost by instinct alone. “Amy, Rory — did you get all that?”
“Yes, River,” the Assessor said flippantly, high-energy now practically vibrating her in place. “We know what to do.”
“This isn’t our first rodeo, you know,” the Battle-Cleric chimed in.
The High Inquisitor laughed and then spun back to the Commendante with that startling speed that had him backing up a step or two, almost as if his conscious self was trying to avoid being struck. The look in her eyes dictated that was a good move, even as she leveled a non-regulation Meson-Phase blaster between Rychtell’s eyes.
“Thank you for the tour, Commendante,” she grinned, her one eye alive and wide with something akin to joy, even as her mouth drew down into a frown. “I hope you don’t mind if we show ourselves out.”
He didn’t really remember much after she shot him, her parting words to his falling torso along the lines of ‘don’t worry, it was just a stun-pellet’, but he couldn’t be sure if she was talking to him or her cohorts. The last sounds he heard before reality went dim were the march of boots on metal corridors, the shouts of his people and the sounds of machines going haywire.
It was only when he woke up two days later, that he remembered one more detail and that was only because he had come to briefly ( before what he presumed was another stun pellet put him back out). It was a miniscule detail and one most people would call hardly worth remembering — and it was all centered around a box.
A big blue box (brilliant, staggering blue) with the odd words ‘Police Public Call Box’ stamped near the top. He thought he heard the grind and wheeze of engines before he succumbed to unconsciousness again, but he couldn’t be sure even years later with the Laaitra-Wyntrium Conflict far behind him and two more under his belt.
When he finally did come fully awake, he was surrounded by his people (some still unconscious, some getting to their feet to check on their comrades), the area he was in half a mile from the base he knew and only two miles from an enemy encampment. And he was sure before he even got to his feet that his base, much less his command was so much ash and smoke.
He wasn’t incorrect in that.
He eventually got back up the ranks and he was forgiven for being duped by the three people who had tricked their way into his base and stolen a resource they hadn’t been able to even come close to matching since. All the information, all the power they had gathered had been blown to pieces and the culprits were nowhere to be found. Eventually they won the war, but the cost was higher and the years much longer than his people had planned for. The victory was bittersweet and a truce was called by High Command.
He could almost swear he knew the man who cemented the negotiations — the resemblance to the Psy-Freak so uncanny, he could bet they were the same man. But he kept his mouth shut, he kept his head down and he counted his lucky stars that he was able to save his career, much less those of his command. If they were the same person, he had more to thank him for than just information (even if it was lost); if his friends had come to rescue him, they had saved the whole base from themselves, the ending of the war bringing a new perspective to what they had done. They may have had a criminal or a savior — either way, they weren’t far from committing the ultimate in crimes themselves.
The man looked at him only once during all the negotiations (an event that last only three whole days) and he shivered when he saw the same gleam in his eyes that the saw in the trio that had invaded his base. It was a look that spoke of joy, even as his mouth frowned. It was the taste of endless knowledge and the price that comes with it. He looked into his face and knew it had to be him. The former Commendante made himself look at the man he almost destroyed and what he saw reflected back at him surprised him and gave him a spark of hope.
At that exact moment General Sias Rychtell looked down at the truce papers in his hand, picked up his pen and signed his apologies in a bid for freedom. It was a new world, it looked to be a better world. And the General (once Commendante) knew that he would find his place within it, a new man, maybe a wiser man, with all the grit and will to live up to what he had seen within the man’s face.
Rychtell was determined he would earn that pardon he had been given freely, he would reach for that hope for the future (even if he shouldn’t dare). He would do all that and more with the constant, unwavering memory of just one small nod and a warm, encouraging smile.