Foreword

I will update this story as often as I remember. However, if you're impatient and see no updates for a while, please check bit . ly /HUZYy9 which is a permanent link to the PDF of the story. It's auto-updated when I save the document. With that said, I hope you enjoy the story~

Prologue

Allons-y

A handsome man with a tall, slim frame stood in front of a monitor, brows furrowed as he scanned the contents presented before him. A hand placed upon his short, messily spiked brown hair, gripping it in frustration. The contents on the screen before him displayed the names of different planets—specifically human colonies.

The Doctor continued to scan the rather long list of planets, his dark brown irises dilating slightly as he searched, hoping to find something of interest. "Aha!" Grinning wildly, he pressed his finger against his choice, spinning around once in a fit of ecstasy before going back to his computer. Pressing a few buttons on the keyboard, the screen then displayed more information on the planet.

"Pern… third planet in the Rukbat system… similar land to water ratio to Earth, 0.9 gravity, interesting fauna…" His visage twisted with excitement, "Ooh, very interesting fauna!"

The glint of excitement in his eyes faded as he continued reading about the planet and the surrounding solar system, "No, no, no!" Panic overwhelmed his form, and he closed out of his current window, and opened up a new one—this time examining the Rukbat system. Of particular interest was a planet that had an eccentric orbit that traveled through a nebulous asteroid belt. This planet's orbital path passed dangerously close to Pern's, at what appeared to be once every 250 years.

Normally, this shouldn't be a problem. Similar things happened on other planets, and usually resulted in inhabitants seeing a spectacular meteor showers when the sister planet passed. However this asteroid belt, the Oort Cloud, was different.

The Oort Cloud was composed of objects made up of various ices such as methane, ethane, and hydrogen. This however, was not the problem. Normally such substances were the result of the formation of a sun, and would go on to create individual planets, and weren't harmful. The problem laid with the ovoids incased in ice that also occupied the asteroid belt.

The ovoids contained a complex, intelligent, sentient species similar to the Xylok, a crystalline race. The sister planet, called the Red Star by Earth colonists, would drag the life forms from their home every time it passed through. The journey away from their gaseous home would cause the helium in the life form to be gradually depleted, inflicting severe neurological damage. The creature inside would then be reduced to operating only on base instincts.

If the Doctor's calculations were correct, when the Red Star passed by Pern, the materials brought from the Oort Cloud would then be released into the planet's atmosphere. Upon entering the atmosphere, the life forms inside the ovoids would break through their nearly impenetrable external casing, activating the organism. Due to the life form's genetic makeup, it was plausible—and extremely likely—that it would ruthlessly devour any organic matter that it could find.

It was true that the Doctor was far more clever than most, but he felt as if the team responsible for evaluating suitable planets had made a massive oversight. Sure, they could survive on that planet for approximately 250 years before finding out they had made a grave error, but what then?

Slamming his fist down hard on the console, he cried out, "I thought you were better than this!" The Doctor's face twisted in anger, and he paced about the console room trying to think of a way to dig the humans out of their hole. Even if the life forms could be combated, it was still a planet-wide epidemic. With such little information to go on, the Doctor would have to survey the planet firsthand.

Pulling a lever, flipping a few switches and pressing a few buttons, the Doctor began piloting his time-traveling spaceship, the TARDIS. Making a sort-of grinding noise for a few moments, it then materialized in the desired location. Checking the computer monitor, he ran a few tests to ensure that the planet had a breathable atmosphere, among other things. The Doctor wasn't quite sure when he landed.