Author's Note: This was written as a script for a Big Finish audio play. FX are the sound effects they would need to add to the scenes. This was written before there was a Rory in New Who.
Scene 1: Ext. Beach
(FX: Deserted beach, seagulls, the lap of the ocean waves, a soft wind, the sound of two people running, splashing and laughing. The sploosh of water being kicked into a wave.)
Nyssa: Doctor, no splashing!
Doctor: Oh, sorry.
(FX: The sound of a huge deliberate splash.)
Doctor: (dripping) Nyssa!
(FX: Nyssa laughs and her footsteps run away, splashing through the water then up onto the muffling, scrunching sand. The Doctor's heavier footsteps run after her. The sound of two bodies plopping down onto the sand, one after the other, still laughing in breathless comeraderie.)
Nyssa: This is wonderful. Thank you for bringing me here. I could sit and just look at this all day.
Doctor: I told you Tretoria was beautiful.
(FX: A brief companionable silence as they listen to the gulls and the wind and the surf.)
Nyssa: (sighs in in sad satisfaction) It's a bit like Traken. I remember when my father used to take me to the beach as a child. (whistful)
Doctor: (apologetic) I...
New Voice: (FX: yelling from far away, a faint echo) Hello down there!
(FX: Sand scrunches as the Doctor and Nyssa both turn.)
Doctor: (softly) There, on the cliff.
New Voice: (slightly echoing, as if being yelled through cupped hands) Have either of you seen a young boy down there?"
Doctor: (Yells back) Hello! (FX: Sand scrunches and shifts as he stands up.) We've seen no one. Has someone gone missing? (concerned)
New Voice: My nephew, Rory. Eight years old, black hair, green eyes. If you see sign of him can you send word to the inn on the headland?
Doctor: (yells back) We will indeed.
New Voice: (in farewell) Thanks. I'll check the next cove.
Nyssa: (sighs) Even in paradise there are worries. Should we help search for the child?
Doctor: It certainly wouldn't hurt to look around.
Nyssa: You always say that. Here, (FX: Sound of sand swishing as she picks something up) You'd better put your coat on, you're soaked through.
Doctor: And who's fault is that? (FX: Rustling as he shrugs into his coat.) Are you going to put your shoes back on?
Nyssa: No, I'd just get sand in them. Doctor, what's that?
Nyssa: Over by the rocks, below the cliffs, is that a body?
(FX: They run, wet sand slapping under their feet.)
Nyssa: It's the boy! Do you think he fell off the cliffs?
Doctor: No, he's wet. It looks like he was swimming in the inlet here. Help me turn him over. (FX: Shuffling as they turn the boy over, background noise of water gently ruffling against stones, the seasurf sound softer here.) Black hair. (the Doctor observed) Rory?
The Boy: (gasps and pants, voice strained) I swam as far as I could. You gotta help me. Chidi's hurt.
Nyssa: Who's Chidi?
Boy: My friend. She's bleeding. I couldn't stop it. You gotta help me.
Doctor: We will. Where's Chidi now?
Boy: In a cave. I had to leave her to get help.
Nyssa: Can you lead us there?
Boy: No. I gotta go get her. I was trying to get to my uncle's inn but it's too far. Wait here. I'll bring her.
(FX: There is a rubbery, bubbling sound.)
Nyssa: (gasps) He's changing!
Doctor: (fascinated) Into a seal. A black seal.
Boy: (FX: voice muffled and furry sounding coming from a muzzle) Wait here! (FX: There's a galumping sound and a splash as he throws his seal body into the water.)
Nyssa: Doctor, what...?
Doctor: He's a selkie. Fascinating. (Ruminative pause, then he sees her questioning look.) A selkie is a creature from Earth mythology, a seal that can turn itself into a human, or a human that can turn itself into a seal, depending on your viewpoint.
Nyssa: But if it's mythology, how can it be real?
Doctor: Tretoria was colonized by humans. But by this time humans have crossbred across the galaxy quite a bit. If he had some shapeshifter in his ancestry it wouldn't be impossible. On the other hand, the myths had to arise from something originally. I wonder if any of his ancestors were Scottish.
Nyssa: Can everyone here turn into sea creatures?
Doctor: No. Unfortunately.
Nyssa: Where's he gone?
Doctor: I don't see him, he went underwater. Ah, there! He's dragging something.
(FX: Their footsteps run down the beach, slapping on the wetpacked sand, then splashing into the surf. There was the weirdly squelching, rubbery sound of transformation again. The boy's voice came through clear.)
Boy: Chidi! Chidi! Help! She won't wake up!
(FX: The Doctor and Nyssa splash to his side.)
Nyssa: She's a mermaid!
Boy: She's still bleeding. I can't stop it. Chidi!
Nyssa: There's a gash in her hip, (she corrects herself) her tail. Doctor, she can't be more than seven years old. She's just a baby.
Doctor: Never mind that right now. Here, help me wet down my coat and wrap it around her. (FX: Rustling as he shrugs out of his coat, and a sharp splat as it hits the water. Swishing and spashing, they manage to wrap it around the mermaid.) There, that should keep her wet enough until we get her in the Tardis. Here, Nyssa, take the key, open the door and go start the flotation tank in the infirmary. (FX: The clink and rattle of the key and chain being passed, then Nyssa's lightfooted footsteps splashing up the beach, off the hardslapping wet sand, onto the muffling, scrunching dry sand, then the scrape of the key on the lock and the creak of the Tardis door.)
Doctor: (FX: Sounds of surf surging around his ankles, the swish and shush of sand.) Up you get. (FX: A grunt and the sound of cascading water.) You're heavier than you look, my girl. (FX: He grunts as he starts carrying her to the Tardis, water swishing around his legs.)
Boy: She's bleeding through your coat! (FX: The Doctor's footsteps heavy and squelching on the wet beach.)
Doctor: Don't you worry, Rory, you come with me. She'll be all right. (FX: Footsteps transition to softer, dry scrunching sand leading to the Tardis) Open the door for me will you? (FX: Tardis door creaking open.) [Following 3 scenes continue in one unbroken stream.]
Scene 2: Int. Tardis Console Room
(FX: The transition from the surf and seagull sounds outside to the hushed aspirating thrum of the Tardis, and blips and beeps of the console. Adult and child footsteps.)
Doctor: Now the other door. (FX: The light patter of bare child's quick footsteps on the hard floor. The Doctor grunts a bit, heavy footsteps, as he carries the heavy young mermaid, footsteps uneven as he maneuvers her through the doors, around the console and through the interior door.)
Scene 3: Int. Tardis Hallway
(FX: Quieter hum of the hallway, the door closes, closing out the blips and beeps of the console.)
Doctor: Good boy. Follow Nyssa's wet footprints, be careful not to slip. (FX: The boy's bare feet slap on the hard floor as he runs down the corridor, the Doctor's trainers creak and squeak on the wet floor as he follows him.)
Scene 4: Int. Tardis Infirmary
(FX: They enter another room, the sound changes to the beeps of medical equipment and the sound of sloshing and bubbling from a large tub.)
Nyssa: It's ready, Doctor. Just lower her into the tub. I've set the nanobots for decontamination and tissue repair. I'll monitor from here.
Doctor: Thank you, Nyssa. (FX: There's a gentle splash and the sound of lapping water.) There we go. Help me get the coat off her, Rory. (FX: More splashing and grunts, and the heavy splat of the waterlogged coat being tossed aside.)
Doctor: She's a beautiful young creature. Just look at her tail, Nyssa, all those colored scales, blue and green and gold. The flukes so delicately made. Hmm. (Pats himself down.) Where's my glasses?
Nyssa: They're in your coat. (FX: A rummaging squish of damp material.) Here.
Doctor: Ah, thank you Nyssa. (FX: The soft click as the Doctor unfolds his glasses and puts them on.) Hmm. Nasty gash there. Coral, Rory?
Rory: Yeah. We were just playing. I got caught in the current. Chidi told me not to, she tried to pull me out but she got caught too. It rammed her up on the rocks, cut her bad. There was so much blood, we were scared the sharks would find her, so I hid her in a cave while I went for help. But the current took us too far, I couldn't get back.
Doctor: You did very well. See? The wound is already stitching together.
Chidi: (FX: A little girl voice, disoriented, weak, strange, with a sort of wavering musical, sonar quality underlying the voice.) Rory?
Rory: Chidi! You're awake!
Chidi: (scared) Rory?
Rory: It's okay, here, take my hand. (FX: a splash as he takes her hand.) I found help. You're getting better. See, this is the Doctor. He's fixing you.
Doctor: (gently) Hello Chidi. That's quite a bump you got there. Can you flex your tail for me?
(FX: There's a soft splash as she flexes her tail.)
Doctor: Good girl. Now, can you feel that?
Chidi: (FX: giggles in her watery musical voice) That tickles!
Doctor: (obviously smiling) Good. (Then in a soft aside to Nyssa) No nerve damage then. How are the readouts?
Nyssa: Vital signs seem good. Nanobots indicate 70 percent repaired.
Doctor: (back to the girl) There now, see, getting better. You just keep holding onto Rory's hand. We're going to keep you in this tub for a little longer until your hip's all healed, okay?
Rory: (staunchly) I'll take care of her, Doctor.
Doctor: I know you will, Rory. (FX: the sound of him patting the boy on the shoulder.)
Nyssa: (softly, so the children won't hear) Doctor.
Nyssa: Look at these readings. I've crosschecked them, but...
Doctor: (FX: The sound of buttons being pushed and switches being flipped.) That's interesting. According to these readings she's human. Bioengineered, but human. Strange, I'd always assumed the Aquatic race on Tretoria was alien.
Nyssa: Does it matter?
Doctor: It could. Given their future.
Nyssa: What future? You intimated something before.
Doctor: (sighs) Trouble in paradise, just as you said. In twenty years, there's going to be a terrible war here. The Terre-Mer war. Tretoria was accidentally colonized by two different races, one terrestrial, one aquatic. Due to some falling out the two races went to war. Each tried to wipe each other out. Xenophobia ran rampant, neither side was willing to share the planet with "aliens."
Nyssa: But, she's human.
Doctor: It's possible she doesn't know that. The original engineering could have happened centuries ago. Look at those markers, Nyssa. If you didn't have the Tardis equipment, would you be able to spot the recoding on those?
Nyssa: (hesistant) No, I suppose not. But why would they go to war just because they thought they weren't the same race?
Doctor: I wish more of the universe shared your Trakenish tolerance. (sad sigh) No, despite the occasional cross breeding, humans are still a terribly territorial species. 'What's mine is mine, and what's yours is mine,' pretty much sums them up. It's not like the humans needed the oceans or the mermaids needed the land. They simply couldn't stand the thought of sharing.
Nyssa: Teegan and I shared a bedroom for years.
Doctor: Ah, well that's different. Individuals tend to be more rational than groups.
Rory: (from across the room) Doctor, I think she's fixed now.
(FX: The Doctor's footsteps walk back across the hard medical bay floor to the sloshing, bleeping flotation tank. Switches and knobs are pressed and clicked.)
Doctor: I do believe you're right. How are you feeling, Chidi?
Chidi: (FX: musical little girl voice) Hungry.
Doctor: (laughing) That's always a good sign.
(FX: Suddenly there's a huge groaning noise, things roll and clatter falling off shelves and tables, the water in the tank sloshes and Chidi shrieks. The others yell and stumble.)
Rory: (paniced) What's happening?
Nyssa: (almost paniced) Something's moving the Tardis!
Doctor: Scanner! (FX: There's a thump as the Doctor hits the wall.) Oof!
Nyssa: It's on the wall above you.
Doctor: Right. (Grunting and shuffling as he works his way up the wall.) I'll route the picture here from the console room! (FX: Key clicks. The whoop of a tv screen coming on. Horrible sucking, squishing sounds, the sound of wet rubber rubbing on glass, heavy booms and crunches as something large grapples with the Tardis.) Tentacles. Huge ones. It's blocking the scanner.
Nyssa: (horrified) What is that thing?
Nyssa: It's grabbed the Tardis. It's going to yank us into the sea!
Doctor: Hold on!
(FX: Wrenching sound of wood, glass breaking, thumps and tumbles, the shriek of the Tardis engines protesting, and the shriek of the children's voices, all cut off by an almighty Splash!)
Scene 5: Ext. Ocean Deep
(FX: Quiet bubbling sounds, deep music.)
Scene 6: Int. Tardis Infirmary
(FX: The clink of someone accidentally kicking a bottle in the silence.)
Nyssa: (unexpectedly calm) It's pulling us down.
Doctor: Yes. I expect someone is not happy that we've taken Chidi out of her natural habitat.
(FX: The rustle of clothes, the squeak of rubber soled shoes twisting on a wet floor, clinks of bottles, and shuffling as they move around, all overlaid with a vast quiet.)
Doctor: Are you all right, Rory? Nyssa?
Rory: I'm okay.
(FX: The Doctor's shoes squeak as he walks across the floor.)
Doctor: Here, Nyssa, help me right the tub. (FX: Grunts, and the gonging sound of a huge metal tub being pushed back upright with a clanging thud, the swish of displaced water.) Are you okay, Chidi?
Chidi: (FX: the sound of the tub full of water swishing back and forth.) (FX: Watery, wavery mermaid voice, uncertain, scared) Kraken?
Doctor: That's what it looked like. Tentacles thirty feet long.
Chidi: (FX: Mermaid voice) (in a soft, chided tone) Uh oh.
Nyssa: (disbelieving) Uh oh?
Rory: I think her dad's mad.
(FX: The Tardis hits bottom with a heavy bump and a bubbly gurgle.)
(FX: Something sharp and heavy bangs on the door with a sound almost like the cloister bell.)
Doctor: Uh oh, indeed.
Scene 7: Ext. Ocean Deep
(FX: A moment of quiet deep ocean gurgles. An undertone of deep groaning and heavy deepwater music underscores from here on. Giving a feeling like a submarine.)
(FX: The sound of a heavy spearbutt on a shield reverberates through the Tardis again. Impatient. The Tardis creaks under pressure.)
Scene 8: Int. Tardis Infirmary
Doctor: Right. Everyone back to the console room. Nyssa, help me transfer the tub to the dolly, we can push Chidi there in that.
Scene 9: Int. Tardis Hallway
(FX: The quiet hum of the Tardis corridors is punctuated by the sound of running feet, sloshing water, and the frantic squeaking of the dolly's wheels. They burst into the console room, banging the tank against the door frame. Some water splashes onto the floor.)
Scene 10: Int. Tardis Console Room
Doctor: Nyssa! Scanner!
(FX: There's the whirring sound of the scanner screen opening.)
(FX: More deep bubbling.)
Nyssa: That Kraken thing has still got a grip on us, Doctor.
Doctor: I can see that. In fact, tentacles are about all I can see. Here, lets pan it around a bit...
New Voice: (actually, the same voice as the Uncle earlier, but overlaid with the musical, wavery, sonar mermaid sound.) (FX: yelling, outraged, booming from outside, partially muffled) Release my daughter, Lander, or I'll have my kracken crush your dwelling!
(FX:The Tardis creaks and grunts under the strain, the slithery, rubbery sound of tightening tentacles outside, like gigantic rubber bands.)
Nyssa: (nervously) I think he means it, Doctor.
Doctor: Yes, but where is he? (FX: sounds of scanner screen rotating) If I could just get a look at him past all those tentacles. Ah! There he is!
Nyssa: (surprised) He doesn't look like a mermaid.
Doctor: Of course not. He's a Triton, a male. They usually have legs. I like the double fishtail adaptation. Much more fluid than knees. I always thought knees were a bad design for an aquatic creature.
Nyssa: (impatient/exasperated) Doctor...
Doctor: Of course. I'll just tune him in. What does it matter if they look like trident-carrying roman warriors with a fish tail for each leg? Their pet squid is about to crush us like a snail's shell.
Triton: (FX: the wavery, muffled voice) If you do not... (FX: suddenly booms out clearly over the sound system) release my daughter this instant I will crush your box like a snail's shell!
Chidi: (FX: tank sloshing slightly in her excitement, the metal tub gonging a bit as she bumps it) (FX: Mermaid voice) I'm okay, daddy! Don't hurt them!
Doctor: Sorry, he didn't hear that. I forgot to turn on the speakers. (FX: The rubby tendrils squeal as they tighten around the Tardis, the wood and time rotor groans. The Doctor, less jovial this time, clicks controls.) Try it now.
Chidi: Daddy! Daddy, can you hear me?
Triton: (uncertain, relieved) Chidi?
Chidi: It's me, daddy. I'm okay. I was hurt but they helped me. Rory's here too. He saved me.
Triton: (stern but gentle) Rory? Is this true?
Rory: (quavering child voice) Yes sir. I'm sorry, it's all my fault. We were playing, and Chidi got hurt, and I tried to find help, but I couldn't swim far enough, (almost crying) and I should have listened to her, I didn't mean...
Triton: (gentler) It's okay, son. Are you safe now? These Landers aren't threatening you?
Rory: (sniffling, wiping his nose) No sir. They helped me. They fixed Chidi, and then your Kraken came and grabbed us...
Triton: (interrupting, uncomfortable) Yes, well, it seems we both have much to apologize for. (to the Doctor) I apologize Lander. My concern for my daughter made me a bit mad. We've been looking for her since this morning.
Doctor: I'm not a Lander, but no apology needed. I quite understand. If you'd be so kind as to call off your pet, I can open the doors and return the children to you.
Triton: I can have the Kraken return you to the beach, I would not risk you flooding your home.
Doctor: No problem... (FX: a click as he turned off the intercom) Chidi, what's your father's name? (he asks aside)
Doctor: (surprised) Really? (FX: a click as he turned the intercom back on without missing a beat,) ...Aeleron. This old crate still has a few tricks up her sleeves. If you will just have the Kraken clear the doors, and stand back, I'll send the children out to you.
Triton: It will be done.
Doctor: (FX: clicking off the intercom, as the Tardis creaks and groans in release as the heavy sound of the tentacles slither off her hull.) Nice fellow. (Turning back to the children) So, Rory, Chidi, you ready to go home?
"Uh, huh." "Yeah." Both children agree.
Doctor: Chidi, how do you feel? Any stiffness? Can you swim?
(FX: A bit of splashing around as she tests herself.)
Chidi: I'm okay. My hip doesn't even hurt. Besides, Rory will help me if I need it. (she said with almost worshipful love.)
Rory: (softly, young love) Yeah, I'll take care of her. Only, how are we going to get out? If you open the doors the water will get in.
Doctor: (FX: already flipping switches) Oh, don't you worry about that. I'll just put a permeable membrane across the door. It'll hold the sea back but allow you to jump through. Can you do that in seal form?
Rory: Yeah. Somebody'll have to carry Chidi to the door though. I don't have arms or legs when I'm a seal.
Doctor: (obviously smiling) Don't worry. I can do that.
(FX: There was the bubbly warping sound of metamorphosis. And the sound of the interior hydraulic doors opening. There was the static sound of a forcefield, and the gentle lapping of water. There's a meaty galumping sound as Rory galumps over to the door, the scrabble of claws on the tile.)
Rory: (FX: in furry muffled seal voice): Cool! The water's just standing there!
Doctor: Neat trick, huh?
Rory: Yeah. Bring Chidi, she should go first.
Doctor: (FX: walks across to the impatiently sloshing tank.) Just put your hands around my neck, Chidi, I'll lift you up. (FX: a splash a grunt and a heave, cascading water. And the Doctor's heavier footsteps, squeaky shoes and dripping sounds, approach the door.)
Nyssa: Rory. You should get home as soon as possible. Your uncle is looking for you. He's worried.
Rory: (FX: resigned, still in muffled furry voice) Yeah. He's probably going to ground me. I wasn't supposed to be out so long. And I can't even tell him why. I promised.
Doctor: Buck up. You did the right thing. That's what's important. Besides, he can't ground you forever.
Rory: (sighing, resigned) He can try. Thank you for helping, Doctor, Nyssa.
Nyssa: You're welcome, Rory.
Rory: You go first, Chidi.
Chidi: Thank you for fixing me, Doctor. (the smack of a kiss) Bye!
(FX: A splash, followed closely by another splash. There was a whalelike roar of happiness outside from the kraken, and the sounds of relieved, welcoming mermale voices. Then the Tardis interior doors whirred shut.)
Nyssa: They were nice children.
Doctor: Yes. They were. It's too bad really.
Nyssa: What is?
Doctor: In thirty years time, it will be those two children who finally stop the war. Rory and Chidiaeleron of Tretoria. I've always wanted to meet them. They were the inspiration for the first wave of Terre-Mer co-colonization, aquatic and terrestrial humans working together to colonize and terraform planets. I just wish they didn't have to go the hard route.
Nyssa: Nothing in life is ever easy, Doctor. But at least they have each other.
Nyssa: (practical) Now, what are we going to do about this mess? We have to get that tub back into the infirmary, and there's water all over the floor.
Doctor: (sighing) I suppose I'd better break out the mops.
Nyssa: And you'd better wring yourself out while you're at it. You're soaking wet. (FX: She pops one of his braces with a loud splat.)
Doctor: Hey! Watch the braces, that hurt!
Nyssa: (consoling) Cheer up, Doctor. That was one of the easier ways we've saved the world.
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