Disclaimer: I don't own "Doctor Who" or "Twilight", and the essential details of the original concept of this fic came from a video posted on YouTube by heroesdwtw- which has unfortunately now been taken off YouTube- and is used with their permission
Feedback: Much appreciated
AN: Essentially a 'briefing' chapter clarifying who the villain is and what he wants, but I felt it was worth writing; I hope you appreciate the final result.
The Legacy of Weng-Chiang
Blinking my eyes open, I was momentarily confused about my current location, a dim voice only just understandable through the pain in my head and the discomfort in my limbs and my vision currently blurry from whatever had just happened to me. Too sore to focus on seeing at the moment, I closed my eyes and concentrated, until my ears finally made out the sound of the Doctor's calm voice responding to the infuriated rants of the man who'd knocked me out earlier.
"…not here-" the Doctor was trying to say.
"His Time Cabinet is here, so he must be!" the man said, followed by the sound of something striking flesh that I assumed was him hitting the Doctor. "He would not abandon those who serve him; he is a killer, but he had demonstrated some semblance of loyalty!"
"We do not serve the Doctor, Mr-" the Brigadier's voice attempted to interject, only for the man to strike him in the face.
"Do not attempt to deceive me!" the man said, glaring at the Brigadier. "The Doctor has always sought followers who share his beliefs; you will not escape by claiming that you do not know him!"
It didn't take a genius to work out that the Doctor and the rest of his friends were going along with this man's ignorance of regeneration to buy us time; this man clearly wanted the Doctor for something specific, so until we had the chance to work out what that was, our best shot at getting out of here was to feign ignorance.
"We never said we didn't know him, we just said we didn't know where he is," I said, drawing the man's attention back to me; I noted that I was sitting down something was wrapped around my upper body, but I was more focused on the sight of the man who'd knocked me out standing in front of me, clearly frustrated at recent events. "He comes and goes; he's not someone who hangs around a lot!"
"For your sake, he had better still be here," the man said, walking over to glare at me with an expression that reminded me of James when he'd been about to eat me. "I've waited far too long to find the Doctor again to be stopped now; if I can't have him, I'll have to settle for you and hope he feels something about you all."
With that disturbing remark, he turned and walked towards the door, turning back to look at us with a smirk. "I'll give you an hour or so to think about that and then, if you still can't tell me where the Doctor is…"
He shrugged, smirking at us all before his gaze focused on me. "As I said, if I cannot find the Doctor, I will settle for hoping that he feels something for you so that he may understand what he did to me."
With that ominous threat, he turned and walked out of the room, leaving us alone in the room. Glancing around, I found that I was sitting in what appeared to be a conference room of some kind, with the Doctor, the Brigadier, Doctor Sullivan and Sergeant Benton sitting around the table, ropes bound around our upper bodies to keep us in the chairs that we were sitting in and arms behind our backs.
"Not a very pleasant chap, that," Doctor Sullivan said. "I assume we don't want to be here when he gets back?"
"Not in the least," the Doctor said, grinning around at the rest of us as he began to flex his arms slightly while he continued to speak, the ropes shifting a surprising amount (Then again, given the Doctor's nature I wouldn't be surprised if he'd taken lessons from Houdini or something like that just in case of something like this). "Just give me some time to get out of these bonds, and we can get on with sorting out this particular mess."
"And what mess would that be, exactly, Doctor?" the Brigadier asked, looking curiously at the Time Lord, surprisingly nonchalant despite the peril as though he already had faith in the Doctor and didn't need anything more than him to know that they'd get away. "I don't suppose you could tell us who- or should I say what- we're dealing with?"
"Well, he doesn't have us under surveillance- it's all pretty basic in here and he assumes that I'm already going to be coming back for the TARDIS if I'm not hidden here already; he doesn't need to spy on us-, so, to tackle the obvious question, he's human, and his name is Kwok," the Doctor explained.
"Kwok?" Benton repeated in confusion.
"He's Chinese," the Doctor explained. "I met him in Shanghai in 1937, back when… well, actually, it was the last me you all met; the scarf and curls, you know."
"Ah," Benton said, nodding in understanding.
"Is that why he's come here now?" Doctor Sullivan asked, looking curiously at the Doctor. "I mean, could he have… found out that the you we know was here recently and thinks that means he can find him here?"
"That's… actually, that's possible," the Doctor said, smiling over at Doctor Sullivan. "Kwok was the member of a major Chinese Triad back when I knew him, and they're typically surprisingly well-connected even without the unique background of this group; considering how little he really knew about me, it wouldn't be impossible to assume that he had a contact or two keeping an eye out for that me, and thought that reports of me being here when I was dealing with the robot and the Zygons were proof that I was going to be here on a semi-regular basis…"
"Mmm," the Brigadier said, in a tone of voice that somehow said a low without saying anything, before he looked more curiously at my friend. "So, what did you do to this 'Kwok' chap to make him go to all this trouble to get you?"
"He blames me for the death of his lover," the Doctor replied.
"And… what really happened?" I asked, looking inquiringly at my friend; I knew that the Doctor wouldn't kill someone unless he had to, but that still created a lot of possible scenarios where he could have killed someone because he didn't have a choice or because someone just wanted someone else to blame…
"Well, that's a long story that starts in the fifty-first century…" the Doctor said, looking thoughtfully down at himself before he looked up with a smile as he continued to move his arms while straining against his bonds. "Still, while I'm working on these, and since Kwok's going to take a while looking for me elsewhere, shall I tell it to you?"
"Please do," the Brigadier said with a nod and a slightly amused smile despite his current confinement.
"Well, as I said, it starts in the fifty-first century, with a man called Magnus Greel," the Doctor explained, his shoulders shifting slightly as he spoke as he worked away at his bonds. "Greel was a prominent figure in the government of that era- officially the Minister of Justice for the Supreme Alliance that controlled most of Earth, although there wasn't much of it that was worth controlling by that point; most of the population had moved on and left Earth as a factory planet for Earth's empire by then-, and was working with various sources to perfect time-travel, but after his crimes were exposed when he tried to assassinate the commissioner of the Icelandic Alliance, he used his prototype Time Cabinet to escape into the past, arriving in China in 1872."
"Over a century ago?" the Brigadier said, looking at the Doctor in surprise.
"Yeah, I know; amazing how long-lasting the effects of these things can be sometimes," the Doctor confirmed, before he continued his story. "Anyway, Greel was discovered by local peasant Li H'sen Chang shortly after his arrival, with Chang giving Greel shelter because he believed that Greel was a god; specifically, he mistook Greel for Weng-Chiang, the god of abundance, worshiped by local criminal fraternity the Tong of the Black Scorpion, given the whole thing with him appearing out of thin air in a flash of light being fairly god-like. After the Time Cabinet was taken by the Emperor soldiers', given a bit of a paint-job, and given to a British soldier as a gift, Greel used his advanced knowledge in genetics to give Chang psychic powers that would help him lead the Tong in the search for the Cabinet."
"So… how did that turn out for them?" Doctor Sullivan asked.
"Not well, really," the Doctor said grimly. "They tracked the Cabinet to London in 1889, but my current allies and I were able to find it first when I was investigating his victims; Greel ended up suffering cellular collapse when I threw him into his own catalytic extraction chamber."
"His what?" I asked.
"Long story short, his time-travel equipment caused serious cellular damage to his system," the Doctor explained. "He'd been killing people to try and control the rate of decay by using the chamber to replace his damaged cells- extract certain compounds from the victims and use the chamber to add them to his own make-up, but that method was really just holding things together while wearing him down in the long term."
"So… when you threw him into the chamber, it extracted everything he needed from his own body?" Doctor Sullivan asked, his expression reflecting his discomfort at the scenario described. "That couldn't have been pleasant…"
"It wasn't a very nice way to go, true, but Greel had killed thousands for his own benefit and would have killed me and my friends if I didn't stop him; if anyone deserved it, he did," the Doctor said firmly, a ruthless edge to his voice that did more to confirm how evil Greel had been than anything else could have done. "What I didn't know at the time was that Chang had a daughter, Hsien-Ko Chang, who had access to her father's journals- and hence everything Li had ever learned from Greel-, and was also virtually immortal thanks to her father's exposure to zygma energy before her conception."
"Virtually immortal?" Benton asked, looking at the Doctor curiously. "What do you mean, virtually immortal?"
"Well, I met her in 1937 when she was chronologically sixty-five and she looked like she was in her mid-twenties at best, but I don't know how she aged before that; what she told me suggested that she'd just stopped aging after she reached a certain point, but I can't exactly be certain that she was just making assumptions out an inability to make more in-depth examinations," the Doctor explained, shrugging slightly before he continued his story. "Kwok was her lover and fiancé, and some people regarded him as the official head of the Tong of the Black Scorpion to make it easier for them to accept instructions from Hsien-Ko; he'd certainly have enough influence to control what was left of them after I sorted out their last plan…"
"OK, so that explains who he is and who she is, so how does that tie in to him believing that you killed Hsien-Ko?" I asked, looking curiously at the Doctor.
"Well, in a nutshell," the Doctor said with a grim smile, "she was working on a means of intercepting the Time Cabinet on its trip back through time, causing Greel to arrive in 1937 rather than 1872, intending to trap Greel somewhere isolated in a modified catalytic extraction chamber where he'd be constantly kept on the verge of death while various small animals kept him alive."
"Oh my God…" I said, wincing at the mental images evoked by the Doctor's description. "That's… that's just…"
"Sick?" the Doctor asked, looking at me with a sad smile. "She justified it by wanting to honour her father, but I agree with you completely; Greel had already suffered a rather unpleasant fate as his cellular structure fell apart, and the fact that some of the Tong still venerated him wasn't going to make that any less pleasant."
"Hold on…" Benton said, looking uncertainly at the Doctor. "She was going to stop this… Magnus Greel bloke from reaching 1872… but wouldn't she only know how to do that because he did arrive there?"
"Excellent observation, my dear Benton," the Doctor said, nodding at Benton with a warm smile before his expression became more solemn once again. "And therein lay the key flaw in Hsien-Ko's plan, John m'boy; she thought that the fact that Greel had made it back against all the odds proved that time didn't work the way the general population expected and that she could change history like that, but I knew that it wouldn't work like that even if I didn't object to what she was planning on a moral level."
"So… what actually happened?" I asked; the sooner I could get the images of someone being trapped in the kind of state the Doctor had just described out of my head, the better. "Did she succeed?"
"Well… yes and no," the Doctor replied, looking at me with a slightly awkward smile. "She managed to generate the energy necessary to interrupt the Zygma beam and draw the Cabinet to 1937, but I managed to prevent her plan succeeding by getting to the TARDIS and materialising the old girl in the exact spot where the Time Cabinet would arrive, essentially 'shoving' it back on course."
"You mean… you got there first, so the Cabinet just… kept on its original route when it couldn't park?" I asked, looking uncertainly at the Doctor.
"Basically, yes; good analogy, Bella," the Doctor said, nodding at me with a smile before his expression became grim once more. "Unfortunately, I didn't have time to take the consequences of such a shift on Hsien-Ko into account; the temporal feedback caused by such a temporal paradox short-circuited the zygma energy and essentially erased Hsien-Ko as she was form history, although the fact that the system wasn't a closed circuit meant that everyone still remembered her even if she disappeared."
"So… she's erased from existence because of her own mistake, and Kwok blames you for it?" I asked.
I could kind of understand how Kwok came to that conclusion- from what the Doctor had described him as, he wouldn't exactly have been willing to hear the Doctor's perspective on what had happened prior to her death, so all he'd have seen is Hsien-Ko's plan failing because of something the Doctor did and her vanishing-, but the idea that someone could spend forty years looking for revenge for someone…
It could have been romantic if you looked at it the right way, but right now I just thought of it as sick and pathetic; why were people so fixated on causing more death to try and avenge someone else's death?
"Best guess, anyway; I've never really bothered to get revenge myself, so I can't say for certain how anyone would react to a situation like that," the Doctor said, shrugging awkwardly as he looked over at me. "That still leaves a few questions about Kwok, of course- even if we assume he's aged well, he couldn't have aged well enough to look like that on his own-, but we can worry about that later; right now, we have to get out of here before he works out who I really am."
"You're saying he's waited all these years… for revenge?" Harry said, looking sceptically at the Doctor. "It… seems a bit stupid…"
"And that's why I like you all, Harry," the Doctor said, smiling over at the medical officer. "You understand what they're doing intellectually, but you'd never do it yourselves; that's what matters most."
It was a weird feeling, but I was actually rather touched at the Doctor's last statement; our lives might be weird and incredible by any standards, but it was somehow comforting to know that I'd earned the admiration of a man who'd seen so much…
"Right then," the Doctor said, looking around at the rest of us as he finished undoing his bonds and stood up from the chair, clapping his hands together with a satisfied smile. "We're taking back UNIT; once I've got everyone out, anyone have any preferences for where we go first?"