It was bigger on the inside…it had balconies, stairs and a large, six sided central control panel covered in a variety of strange controls. The walls were covered in hexagonal and circular light fittings. The small band of UNIT, SFOD-D and FEAR troopers entered the room with more than a little trepidation.
"Go on in," the Doctor said, "I'd argue it's safer in here than out there."
"Man, whatever that little laser thing of yours is, it's sure got some crazy narcotics in it," Holiday said, awestruck by the room.
"You mean this?" the Doctor asked, holding up the device. "Sonic screwdriver, but… I've done nothing to you. I assure you, this room is entirely real. As are the rest…"
"The rest?" Jin asked, looking at him in bewilderment. "You mean there's actually more?"
"Oh, this is just the start," the Doctor smiled, bounding up the stairs. "This thing is called the TARDIS. Stands for Time And Relative Dimension In Space, it's dimensionally transcendental - the complicated way of saying bigger on the inside - and has a coffee machine in the kitchen, if you're interested." The Doctor looked down at the little band of humans. "Any questions?"
The Point Man tilted his head. Three things were obvious - this guy was a bit mad, this guy was incredibly smart and difficult to scare, and this guy was definitely not your run of the mil human. Or possibly even human full stop. It amazed the Point Man how quickly that particular revelation came to him, but then again, when one's mother is an incredibly powerful and homicidal psychic ghost and one's brother is an insane cannibalistic psychic commander of a Clone Army, one tends to re-evaluate one's traditional ideas of sane/not sane.
The Doctor had been very specific to them that they not wander off, and they didn't. Then the near constant awestruck staring and chattering had annoyed him, so he put them in a different room and told them to wait, so wait they did. Now here he was, trying to clear away psychic interference. Not easy but he hadn't supposed it would be.
"She's confused by you,"a voice said, and the Doctor looked up to see a man, bald and bearded, in the FEAR uniform staring at him. This wouldn't have been half as disconcerting as it ended up being if he had still had his eyes but sadly he did not. The Doctor whipped out his sonic screwdriver and scanned the man; the readings were odd. He wasn't dead, not exactly. It was as if he was more than psychic imprint, less than full blooded human.
"What are you?" the Doctor asked softly.
"Spencer Jankowski, Lieutenant, First Encounter Assault Recon,"the phantom said.*
"That's who," the Doctor said sadly. "You must know you aren't justa man anymore."
"She doesn't know what you are or why you're here," the phantom said, as if it hadn't heard. "You're new."
"Really," the Doctor said, disbelieving him. "Is she scared?"
In reply, the phantom vanished… and in his place, another reality warp began to happen. The Doctor scanned it, and then grimaced as something suddenly grabbed his arms and slammed him against his own railings.*
A woman. Naked, with long black hair, staring at him angrily. He recognised her a split second later as being Alma Wade, the little girl, suddenly grown up.
"GO AWAY!" she yelled into his face, and she started pushing, threatening to break his back against his own railings.
A gunshot punctuated the air. Then another. Then a third, and Alma vanished with the same sepia effect that she had arrived with. The Doctor looked up, to see the Point Man staring at him grimly.
"She's gotten scarier," the Doctor said. "And I don't think she likes me."*
"Goes without saying," the Point Man replied softly. "She doesn't like anyone. Not even me."
A moment's pause lay between them, and then the Doctor asked a question.
"You said your name was Wade," he said. "But your friends seem content to call you 'point man'."
"Point Man is my position in my squad," the Point Man - Wade? - replied. "Wade was my Mother's name. I'm not known by it but it is mine by rights."
"You aren't sure whether you like it though," the Doctor said.
"She's insane and evil," the Point Man replied. "Would you like it?"
"Well, I'm not one to lecture on names," the Doctor said, sighing. "I don't particularly like mine either."
"What is it?" the Point Man asked. The Doctor looked around; technically this was important, his full name. He should really only share it with others on important days, and then only with family… but what the hell.
"Promise not to tell," the Doctor said.
"Promise," the Point Man replied. The Doctor told him. It was a long name and the Point Man was vaguely certain he'd never be able to repeat it - but there it was. The Point Man smiled.*
Then the hexagonal console started beeping. The Doctor went to it, and checked a monitor that hung from above.
"Ah," he said, smiling. "We've cleared your communications, but I don't think for long. Best gather your posse; time to go out again."
Holiday was currently trying to get confirmation from Delta Force's field commander Den Mother as to what was going on. FEAR's co-ordinator had a simple order for the Point Man and Jin - to stop Alma however they could. The UNIT troopers were ordered to give whatever support they could - and the Doctor, much to the man's displeasure, was ordered to assist.
"I keep saying I left ages ago," he muttered.
"You never bothered penning a resignation and this is what you get for it," Bateson replied, grinning. "I sympathise, truly I do."
"Yeah yeah, you're just lucky it was Lethbridge-Stewart who asked me to help or you'd be on your own," the Doctor said scathingly.
"As if," Cantrell grinned. Spinelli nodded.
"Ok," Holiday said, interrupting the talking with his commanding voice. "Den Mother's just sent me the latest - apparently, Delta Force team Dark Signal was despatched to capture Genevieve Aristide, but contact was lost, until just now: 'parrently, their signals' have shown up again on Still Island Nuclear Facility." grimaced. "I know their squad leader - Cedric Griffin's a good guy. Whatever they're doing there, you just bet it's part of stopping this unnatural shit."
"Alma?" Jin asked.
"Den Mother didn't say anything about her and I don't wanna tell him," Holiday sighed. "I'll assume that Dark Signal's caught up in this, but even if they weren't, Griffin's team are pro's - we could use them. Hell, one of them reminds me of you buddy," theaster Sergeant said to the Point Man, who raised an eyebrow.
"So what're we waiting for?" Spinelli asked. "This hanging around really bugs me..."
He was cut off by a burst of SMG fire tearing through him. Out of the ruins sprang an army of identical figures, armed with similar weapons and armoured in green camo combat armour.
"Replicas!" the Point Man yelled.