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Penumbra (6/6)

Title: Penumbra
Characters: Five, Tegan, Turlough, OCs
Word Count: 5953
Rating: WARNING: This story is rated "R" for gratuitous violence (The first part is the worst and I think they become a bit less as we move on, maybe PG-13)
Summary: The TARDIS arrives in Georgia in 1742 and becomes involved with Redcoats, Cherokee and werewolves.
Notes: OK, this is yet another story version of a sim done by Dr Who & Co. I came in late on this one so the bloodiness was before my time so I want no blame for that. I think Part 1 is the worst in that respect, so stick it out, I think it's worth it. This was begun 10/17/00.

Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four
Part Five



VI


The Doctor had his hands to his head, eyes closed, in deep concentration. The wound on his face was leaking the same serous fluid as Tegan's wound a while back.

The sergeant looked worriedly at the wound slowly re-cocked his musket. "Doctor?"

The Doctor stumbled back against the console and stood there, teeth clenched, fighting an inward battle. In his mind he heard the voice of the Wolf Spirit. ~~You are mine now! I have defeated you! You will join me in taking control of this world!~~

"No! I..." The Doctor's hands started to turn to claws. No! I will not join you! I refuse!"

The sergeant eased away from the Doctor. "As you say, Doctor."

~~You will! And with your body, and knowledge, I shall control even the stars!~~

The Doctor pounded on the console in madness, destroying most of the panel. "Never! I..." He suddenly slumped to the floor and sat against the wall, eyes closed and a calm expression on his face. His hands returned to normal.

~~What are you doing?~~ demanded the Wolf Spirit.

"I'm blocking you," the Doctor replied in his mind.

~~You will not succeed. You will not be able to hold me back forever. I am only getting stronger, and once I have claimed your friends, you will have no resistance against me at all.~~

"Might as well play the cards I've been dealt," muttered the sergeant. He approached the Doctor slowly with his musket still in his hand. "Doctor?" he called softly. "Doctor, are you...there?"

"Besides, the Sergeant probably has a gun to my head right now, getting ready to kill me. That won't do your conquest very well, will it?" he told the spirit.

~~You lie!~~

The sergeant placed the muzzle of his musket behind the Doctor's right ear. "Doctor?"

"Would you be willing to risk your success on that? If you don't let go, I can't tell him not to kill me. So, it's your move, Mr. Wolf Spirit."

"Doctor, are you all right?" the sergeant asked a little louder.

~~No matter,~~ continued the Wolf Spirit. ~~Once your friends have succumbed to me, I shall be all the more stronger. Then you will have no resistance.~~ He left the Doctor.

The Doctor then opened his eyes suddenly and looked up at the Sergeant pointing the gun at him. "Yes, Sergeant. I'm quite fine now." He gave him a little smile. The sergeant sighed and lowered his musket. The Doctor stood. "Though I did have my doubts a few moments ago." He looked at the panel he destroyed with his wolf strength.

"Shall we pursue your friends? Or do you have some other infernal machine that might help?"

"First thing's first, Sergeant. We need to find Tegan and Turlough before the next full moon. Then release them, somehow, from the wolf-spirit's hold. It seems he gains strength from each person he assimilates, along with the knowledge of that person. He said once he takes Tegan and Turlough, he'll come again for me and he's already blazed a trail." He lightly touched the series of scratches on his face. "And a creature like that in control of this." He patted the control console.

The sergeant looked back at the smashed console. "Perhaps it's not so bad you had your little loss of control."

"Well, more than likely he'll be stymied for a while. But as my knowledge gets transferred to him, he could fix it easily within a matter of days."

"Then let's use that time well, eh, Doctor?"

The Doctor nodded. "Let's find them before it's too late."

The sergeant took the second musket from the hat rack, hesitated, then handed it to the Doctor who took the musket wordlessly, opened the door, and the two exited.

**********************

Turlough ran through the woods with Tegan in his arms. He sniffed the air lightly, growled, smiling slightly with canine fangs protruding from his mouth. He gave a louder growl and set off in a new direction with a bound. He reached a small cave and set Tegan down near the mouth. He looked at her unconscious form and down at his paws with razor-sharp claws instead of his usual nails. Unburdened by Tegan, he could freely run on all fours. He turned into the cave and searched for something. He found a feather and returned to lightly tickle her face. Tegan laughed and tried to brush it from her face, still half-asleep. Turlough growled in frustration and tickled her some more. She laughed and opened her eyes, still laughing. She looked around and noticed Wolf-Turlough hovering over her. She screamed and scrambled back away from him. Turlough retreated to the other side of the cave as Tegan backed up further, running her back against the cave wall.

Turlough looked over at Tegan, saw the terror on her face, and whined a bit. He tilted his head to one side and sniffed. Tegan flinched at his sniffs and braced herself to make a quick escape. He sniffed, again in her direction and moved toward her, still sniffing. Tegan staggered to her feet, looked at the cave opening with Turlough blocking it, and hesitated, glancing deeper into the cave. Turlough stepped closer to her, still sniffing the air. Tegan backed away from Turlough, and ran deeper into the cave. A long deep howl was heard from the depth of the cave.

*******************

"Doctor, listen!" An eerie howl echoed through the night.

"It came from this way!" The Doctor changed direction and headed for a rocky hillside.

The sergeant double timed behind the Doctor, twisting his head as he ran to keep a lookout for their flanks.

The Doctor scrabbled up the rocky bank. "At least they're making it easy to find them." He paused. "Maybe too easy, but we've no other alternative." He came to the cave mouth, a smallish hole in the side of the hill. "This is it." He turned to the sergeant. "It would be better if you were to go back to the village. I've a feeling it's going to be extremely dangerous ahead. You're sure you want to come with me, Sergeant?"

"No, but I intend to, Doctor. When we enter, we should each take a side of the cave against our backs."

The Doctor gave the Sergeant a long look, chuckled quietly, and shook his head. "You know, you remind me of someone I knew a long time ago. Come on, then. In we go." He stooped down and entered the mouth of the cave.

Turlough heard noises from the entrance of the cave. He hesitated, looking in the direction that Tegan disappeared in. He turned back to the cave entrance and dropped into a crouch and sniffed the air.

Once inside cave, it opened enough for the Doctor to stand straight. He pulled a torch from his pocket and shined it around the room. "I really should eat more carrots." He heard movement in the shadows, shined a light over and saw Turlough, looking like Lon Chaney's Wolfman. Turlough fell back at the bright light as it hurt his eyes. "Hello, Turlough. It's only me and the Sergeant. We mean you no harm. Do you understand me?"

Turlough tilted his head and looked at the two men.

"Listen to the Doctor, laddie."

Turlough nodded and smiled, showing a set of pointed fangs.

"Splendid! Where's Tegan? Where did she go?"

Turlough jerked his head towards the back of the cave and loped over.

At that moment they heard a scream from deep within the cave. The sergeant started to run in the direction of the scream. "We're comin', lassie!"

"Tegan!" The Docter dahed towards the scream. He stooped down through a low passage and found Tegan.

Tegan scrambled back against a wall with the wolf not far from her, her nails still a bit like claws, scratching on the stone floor. "Doctor!"

The Doctor's eyes widened at the other occupant of the room. "Oh dear."

The wolf snapped his head to look at the Doctor then turned back to Tegan.

The sergeant skidded to a halt next to the Doctor, with his musket raised. "What manner of beastie is that?"

Turlough gave voice to a deep growl and approached the wolf. The wolf growled back at Turlough.
~~Seems you've gotten yourself into quite a fix, Doctor,~~ the Wolf Spirit gloated in his mind.
Turlough growled and rushed the wolf, forcing him away from Tegan.

The Doctor backed up against the wall. "Turlough, no, don't..."

The wolf swiped a paw at Turlough.

"Turlough!" Tegan screamed.

Turlough snapped his jaws at the wolf's back, forcing him down.

~~Now my pets will play. Will one die? Let's find out!~~ taunted the Wolf Spirit.

The wolf snapped back and bit one of Turlough's legs. Turlough howled in pain and scratched at the wolf's chest.

The sergeant took aim at the wolf. "Mind your ears, lassie."

"No! You could hit Turlough!" cried the Doctor.

"No!" Tegan rushed the Sergeant.

"Blast! Can't get a clean shot, Doctor." The sergeant put down the musket and patted Tegan on the shoulder.

The wolf head-butted Turlough in the stomach. Turlough rolled over and over with the wolf as he tried to get a grip on the wolf's neck with his jaws. The wolf yelped out in pain as one of Turlough's teeth pierced his skin.

"Just make them stop it, before they're both killed!" shouted Tegan.

"Stop this! Stop this now! Wolf Spirit, I have a deal to make with you!" the Doctor shouted at the ceiling.

The sergeant glanced up at dark ceiling of cave, then looked askance at the Doctor. Startled, the wolf looked up at the Doctor, taking his eyes off Turlough for a moment. Turlough also stopped fighting to look at the Doctor. There was a deafening silence in the cave.

"I have a deal to make with you, Wolf Spirit," the Doctor continued breathlessly. "I think you'll find it hard to refuse."

~~Amaze me,~~ said the Wolf Spirit, bored.

"I know that you're going through all this trouble just so you can acquire Tegan and Turlough and then you will be strong enough to break through my defenses and take over my body."

~~Yes, yes, yes. Get to the point.~~

"Impatient, aren't you? Well, here's what I have to offer. Myself. Right here and now for Tegan, Turlough, and the Wise Woman's son. Only if I'm allowed to leave here and never come back to this planet."

Turlough looked up in amazement at the Doctor.

"Doctor, no! Don't do it!" The Doctor gave Tegan a helpless 'no-other-way' look. "Don't give me that! There's got to be another way!" Her eyes gleamed red with emotion.

The Doctor shouted up to the ceiling. "Well? What do you say?"

~~I...accept!~~

Tegan's eyes burned brilliantly for a second, before returning to their normal color. Her nails retracted and returned to normal human nails. Turlough gritted his teeth in pain as his body reverted to human. The wolf also began to change to human form.

As his friends reverted, the Doctor transformed. "Got to...get out of...here." He tore off his jacket and shirt. "Hot! So hot!" His voice became hoarse and beastial. He then ran towards the exit, first on two legs, then on four. By the time he exited, he had turned fully into a golden-colored wolf. He bounded off down the hillside towards the TARDIS.

~~Yes! The universe is mine!~~ crowed the Wolf Spirit.

"Doctor!" cried Turlough hoarsely.

"Doctor, no!" Tegan turned to the sergeant and Turlough. "We can't just leave him to that...that.. .whatever it is!"

A young Indian lay on the ground, watching, unable to get up properly. Turlough staggered to his feet and helped the Indian up. The sergeant crossed the cave and helped Turlough with the Indian. "You all right now, laddie?"

"Yes, sergeant. Thank you," answered Turlough.

The Indian leaned on Turlough and the sergeant and tried to walk. After a moment of sleight hesitation, Tegan followed.

"Can you see to the others, Turlough?" asked the sergeant.

"I guess so. You'll take care of the Doctor? Don't hurt him if you can help it."

The sergeant hefted his musket and hanged his head. "Perhaps I can at least put his soul to rest." He ran after the Doctor.

"No! Turlough!" Tegan looked at him accusingly.

"Tegan, we have to hurry back to the Indian camp." He looked at the Indian. "Once we return him maybe the wise woman can help us."

"That won't help the Doctor if the sergeant shoots him before then. I can't believe you let him leave like that without an argument. The Doctor is our friend and I won't just let him be shot like a wild animal. Take care of that kid if you want, but I'm going after the sergeant." She gave Turlough a resolute look and took off after the sergeant.

"Tegan!" he moaned at her retreating back.

"You...you have little time to stop him," said the Indian.

Turlough helped the Cherokee as they walked out of the cave. "The Doctor knows what he's doing."

The sergeant stood with Tegan at the mouth of the cave. When Turlough and the Indian boy appeared out of the darkness of the interior of the cave, he took the Indian's other arm. "I thought you were going after the Doctor?" Turlough asked him.

"The Doctor's a beastie now and runs like one. I doubt if I could catch him even if I had a horse. Let's head back to the village."

"He's gone to the TARDIS. But we have to take...er...what's your name?" Turlough asked the Indian.

"I am called Dancing Wolf."

Turlough smirked at the irony. "Yeah, well, we have to take Dancing Wolf back to his village first."

"C'mon, lassie, take my other arm."

"I'm quite all right, Sergeant," Tegan told him.

"No, you must catch him!" Dancing Wolf told them. "You have to hurry!"

"We should split up," said Tegan. "Some of us go after the Doctor."

"Against him in that wolf-form? I don't think so." Turlough was adamant.

"None of ye are fit," the sergeant said. "Even I couldn't keep him in sight."

"What in sight? He's gone to the TARDIS! That's the only place he knows around here!" declared Tegan.

"I still think we should get help from the Cherokee. We need more than just the four of us," said Turlough.

"If we don't get to the TARDIS, he might leave without us. I don't care what form he's in, this isn't where I belong!"

"Well, he made a right mess of that infernal machine. Doubt it'll go anywhere for a while," the sergeant told them.

"Mess? What mess?" questioned Turlough.

"Smashed it, he did, with his bare hands."

"Good. That buys us some time." Turlough tried to pick up the pace a little.

"I'm sure he'll be able to fix it. I've seen him tinkering with it dozens of times," commented Tegan.

Dancing Wolf looked at the strangers, confused. "TARDIS? What manner of animal is that?"

"Good question, that, lad," muttered the sergeant.

"It's how we travel," Turlough answered him. "He'll be too busy fighting the Wolf Spirit," he said to Tegan.

"But we have to go after him! Who knows what that wolf thing will be able to do once it gets to the TARDIS!"

"If he...it can even get inside. The Doctor locked it. Or at least I think he locked it," said the sergeant.

"I don't think a lock will be able to stop it for long. It has the Doctor's mind, after all. Rabbits! It's just like him to let something like this happen." She glared at Turlough. "The rest of you can talk pleasantries. I'm going after him." She took off in the direction of the TARDIS.

"Doesn't she ever listen? Sergeant, can you make it to the village? I don't want to think of what trouble she'll get into."

"No problem, lad." With a nod of thanks, Turlough rushed after Tegan.

"We're not tracking now, we can take a dead tack," said the sergeant.

Dancing Wolf pointed to grasses that were bent over. "That way is quick. The track is well worn and leads to the village."

"Let's go. There's someone who has waited a long time to see you, again."

*************************

The Doctor approached the TARDIS, stood on his hind legs and pushed the door open. "At last!" He smiled, or as close to a smile as his wolf mouth could manage, he stood and padded around the console room victoriously until he spotted the bashed-in panel. "Very clever, Doctor," he growled.

"Well, at least that bit of damage is serving a purpose," said the Doctor from within his mind.

"You will repair it, Doctor!" the Wolf Spirit roared.

"That would be a bit difficult, wouldn't it, without opposable thumbs. Besides, I've no control of my own body. I'm afraid you're stuck here until you can learn this yourself." Suddenly, the Doctor's mind was pushed to the forefront, and his hands became more humanlike, albeit still wolfishly clawed.

"I give to you control of your mind and body," said the Wolf Spirit in his mind. "But, remember, if you betray me, I will destroy you from the inside out!"

The Doctor sighed. "Very well." He padded out of the room to get the toolbox.

***************************

Dancing Wolf pointed to the left fork. "This way. Village near."

The sergeant took the fork and soon reached the bottom of the hill where the camp was located. He stopped as a call went up and waited for guards to guide them into village.

Some Indian guards approached the two cautiously. They took Dancing Wolf from the Sergeant and helped him into village. Dancing Wolf looked around at the familiar surroundings of the village. The guards stopped outside the cabin of the wise woman and shouted to her.

The wise woman was sitting inside her cabin praying when she heard the guards call her. Her eyes opened with a start and she got unsteadily to her feet. She hobbled out of her cabin and saw her son. "Dan...Dancing Wolf!? My son?"

Dancing Wolf looked deep into his the old woman's face. "Mother?" He stumbled forward towards her.

The wise woman nodded, tears streaming down her wrinkled face. "I thought you were gone forever." She took him in her arms and hugged him tightly. He returned the hug with equal pressure. "How are you my son? What... How were you freed from the Wolf's curse?"

"The strange man with fair hair... He has done the most foolish of things to free me from the curse. I owe him my life."

"The fair haired... No! He mustn't have! He exchanged himself for you? Oh, Great Spirit, bless him," she sobbed. She suddenly straightened and a look of determination entered her eyes. "I must pray for his release. The Great Spirit will help those deserving."

"Yes, we must save him from the fate he has chosen," her son agreed.

The wise woman motioned for her son and the Sergeant to enter her cabin. "We must pray together. Pray for a miracle. The Doctor's life depends on it." She sat down and joined hands with the others "Great Spirit, we ask you to deliver the Doctor from the clutches of the evil spirit. Please, send a miracle to save him from death. Send your help on the wings of the bird of thunder."

"Amen," said the sergeant softly.

Dancing Wolf sat silently with his head bowed.

***********************

Still in wolf form, the Doctor sat in the console room with scattered tools surrounding him. He pulled out a wrench from the toolbox and started to remove panel. "You're not really a spirit, are you? I can tell, you know. We do share minds now," he growled.

"You are correct. But the primitives on this plane think I'm a god, so I take advantage of that," the Wolf Spirit said in his mind.

The Doctor removed the panel. "I see. You're just a parasitic entity full up from your previous plane's existence and have only just started making excursions into this one."

"Yes, but thanks to you, good Doctor, I shall extend my reach to the stars above!"

The Doctor fumbled with the instruments in his wolfish hands. "I've heard that before."

Tegan burst into the control room. "Doctor! Wait!"

The Doctor snapped his beastly head in Tegan's direction. His eyes glittered menacingly at her. "Tegan! Go away! Now!"

Turlough skidded into the control room just after Tegan. "Tegan!" He stopped short when he saw the Doctor.

"No! We're not just going to stand by while you strand us here! Let us help you fight this!"

"The human will not interfere!" the Wolf Spirit ordered.

Turlough grabbed Tegan's arm. "Come on! We can't help him now. We'll wait outside. We'll get in the way here."

"You can believe that if you want, but I'm staying!" She started to yank her arm out of his grasp, but stopped and looked at the Doctor.

"Stop! If you force me to harm them, I will refuse to repair this. I'll destroy it to where you'll never leave here! You can kill me if you wish, but either way you'll be stuck here forever!" The Doctor stood still, and nothing happened. He felt the Wolf Spirit retreating back in his mind. "No, wait, Turlough, Tegan. You can help me finish this."

Tegan yanked her arm away from Turlough, giving him a look, and went to stand by the control console. "Just tell us what to do, Doctor."

Turlough was shocked. "Really?" He watched carefully from by the door, still a little unsure.

The Doctor nodded. "I need this panel repaired and my hands aren't as dexterous as they once were."

Tegan moved over to the panel. "Nyssa was far better at this than me."

Turlough inched closer. "What can I do?" He stood by Tegan at the console.

"Just follow my instructions and you two should do fine. It's the only way. The Cherokee are very hospitable. You should be quite at home here."

"Not bloody likely," muttered Tegan.

The Doctor gave Tegan and Turlough an almost imperceptable wink. "I know when I've been beaten."

(3 hours later)

Turlough wiped his brow. "Looks good to me."

The Doctor placed the new panel back on the console. "There. Now it's time to say goodbye, Tegan and Turlough."

"Goodbye? You can't just leave us here! I've already been exiled once!"

"And you promised you'd take me home!"

The Doctor sighed. "I'm sorry. It couldn't have been any other way. I'm sorry."

"They've served their purpose! Get them out of here!" the Wolf Spirit demanded.

"If it'll save lives, I guess I can bear it," said Turlough resignedly. He held out his hand to Tegan. "Come on."

"Goodbye, my friends. I'm sorry."

"He's broken his promises enough times." Tegan ignored and stormed out without a backward glance.

Hearing that stabbed through the Doctor's hearts like ice picks.

"Tegan?" Turlough looked back at the Doctor. "Thank you." He walked out.

"Finally! We fly!" the Wolf Spirit exhalted.

The Doctor closed the doors. "I hope you're pleased with yourself."

"Indeed I am, Doctor!"

The Doctor pressed the dematerialization switch. "Off we go then. I know just the place for you." The coordinates streamed onto the monitor, and the rotor started to rise and fall.

******************

Tegan sat on a small grass hill gazing at the TARDIS sadly. Turlough joined her. "I guess we could go back to London with the sergeant. I mean, if we're going to be stuck here, I prefer London to this."

"But it's not the same London, you know. It won't be for a couple hundred years."

"But it has more going for it now than this place does."

"No cars, no airplanes, no..." She watched as the TARDIS slowly disappeared. She looked away, trying not to show any sign of emotion. A tear ran down her cheek.

Turlough heard the TARDIS and turned to face it, only to see it disappear. He turned away from Tegan, not wanting to embarrass her. "So, what now?"

"I...I think I'd like to stay right here for a little while." She kept her eyes on the spot where the TARDIS had been.

"Want some company?"

She looked up at him and tried to smile. "All right."

*********************

Inside the console room, the TARDIS started to buck and sway. "What is happening?" questioned the Wolf Spirit in the Doctor's mind.

"Oh? Just normal suspension trouble. You should have possessed someone with a TARDIS that was still under warranty."

"Doctor, you are hiding something from me! There's a wall in your mind I cannot see through! What is it? Tell me or I'll kill you!"

"Go ahead. It won't matter. We've arrived!" He opened the door and exited out into a strange landscape, like Earth, but strangely different. It looked almost like a negative image.

"No! Not back here! I can't be out in the open here or they'll... No! They're coming!" A group of huge shadowy bird-like shapes descended on the Wolf-Doctor.

"Friends of yours?"

"I must leave!" He tried to gain control of the Doctor's mind but couldn't. "What? What are you doing?"

"I'm not doing anything. It must be the welcoming committee up there." He looked up at the descending birds.

The bird creatures landed in a circle around the Wolf-Doctor. A large one with feathers of a dark blue and violet approached the Doctor. His wings made the sound of thunder as he moved. "I am Thunder Bird, guardian of the Tsalagi. You do injustice to the immortal forces of this plane. You abuse your power. For that you will be punished! What say you, Wolf?"

"What say you? What say you? What say you?" chorused the other bird creatures.

The Doctor raised a paw. "Um, I think he's reluctant to speak. I'm the Doctor and he's taken control of my body."

"I know," answered the Thunder Bird. "We have been told this by the Wise Woman of the Tsalagi Village. Wolf, do you have anything to say in your defense?"

"I could have been a ruler of the universe and time. I curse you, Doctor! If I must die, so shall you!"

The Doctor staggered and fell to the ground, howling in pain, and clutching at his chest. A beam of light lanced out from the Thunder Bird's eyes and shined on Wolf-Doctor. He shimmered for a moment as the light intensified. The Thunder Bird closed his eyes and the light disappeared, leaving only a human-sized pure silver statue of a wolf in the place where Wolf-Doctor had stood. Next to the Wolf statue, the Doctor's prone body materialized. He lay unconscious, breathing quietly.

"He will be sent back to his own plane. The Great Spirit smiles upon him." The Thunder Birds lifted the unconscious Doctor and carried him into his TARDIS. They then filed out of the police box and stood in a circle around it. The head Thunder Bird opened his eyes, emitting a blinding light that struck the TARDIS. As the light intensified, the wheezing and groaning of the TARDIS was heard. The Thunder Bird closed his eyes, shutting off the light. The Police Box had completely vanished.

********************

The sergeant quietly slipped away from the tearful reunion and left the village, heading for the TARDIS to see if he could help Turlough and Tegan.

The wise woman's eyes opened from her prayer, and, as if told something that only she could hear, she smiled gleefully. "Great Spirit be praised!"


Turlough remained seated by Tegan in companionable silence. After a few moments, he heard a rustling in the woods behind them and turned to see the sergeant emerge.

“Where is that machine?”

“Gone,” Tegan said sadly.

“And the Doctor? Is he...?”

“Still possessed last time we saw him,” Turlough answered. “Though only partially.”

“Doesn't matter now,” said Tegan. “He left with the TARDIS.”

The sergeant twirled to face a whirring thumping sound and Tegan’s eyes widened and she started to stand up.

“It can't be,” said Turlough in disbelief.

“Only one way to find out.” Tegan scrambled down the hill towards the TARDIS as it solidified.

Turlough bounded after Tegan as the sergeant unslung his musket and held the weapon at the ready as he approached the TARDIS a little way behind Tegan and Turlough.

Tegan reached the TARDIS and pushed open the doors cautiously. Turlough entered the TARDIS and saw the Doctor lying on the ground, looking like his normal self.

“Doctor!” Tegan rushed over and knelt beside him.

“I guess this means he won.”

The Doctor opened his eyes and gazed up at his friends. “I got by with a little help from my friends.” He grinned and eased himself up into a sitting position. He ran his hand back through his hair and looked down at himself. “Ah, great to be back to my old self.” He flexed his hands and fingers.

Turlough grinned. “I know what you mean.”

The sergeant came up behind them. “I say, are you all right, Doctor?”

The Doctor nodded. “I believe so. The Wolf Spirit is gone. Destroyed, I believe. At least I think he was.”

“What do you mean, ‘think’?” asked Tegan. “Was it? Doctor, what happened?”

“I'm not really sure. I took him to his home plane and we were met by a flock of ‘Thunder Birds’. The Wolf knew they were going to punish him for abusing his power, so he said he'd kill me for taking me back there. He tried to stop my hearts and…that's all I can remember.” He rubbed his chest absently. He looked down noticing he was missing his jacket and shirt and his slacks were in tatters. “Dear me.”

Turlough held out a hand to help the Doctor stand.

The Doctor got to his feet. “Thank you, Turlough. I'm pretty certain that he was punished. Those Thunder Birds seemed adamant.”

“So there's no way he can come back?” Turlough asked.

The Doctor shook his head. “I doubt it.”

“Good. I'm getting tired of being possessed,” remarked Tegan.

“Well, at least my company is avenged,” said he sergeant. “Thank you, Doctor.” He shook the Doctor's hand.

The Doctor shook the sergeant’s hand in return. “Thank you, Sergeant. “I need to pop by the village, again before we depart.” He turned toward the interior door. “Before we
leave, though, I need to get a change of clothes.” He disappeared into the TARDIS's inner halls.

Turlough turned to the sergeant. “Yes, thank you for not shooting us.” He shook the sergeant's hand.

“I'm just as glad it never came to that.”

“It was nice meeting you, sergeant. Even after everything,” said Tegan.

“You take care, lassie.”

The Doctor returned in a surprisingly short time fully dressed in his usual cricketing attire. “Now, let's head to the village...on foot. I think the old girl's in a bit of shock over what she's been through. She may not be very accurate on her short hops right now.”

“I guess I need to head back and report in. Although I have no idea what I should say.”

“Say your men were killed by a wolf and now it's gone,” suggested Turlough. “That's not a lie.”

“Especially after your whole regiment was pretty much wiped out,” added Tegan.

“Good idea, lad. Thank you.”

The Doctor exited the TARDIS. “So, Sergeant, what are your plans after all this?” he asked as he locked the door once everyone was out.

“Well, my enlistment is up in two months and with the way things are in Scotland now I think a member of my clan would be better off in the colonies. Particularly if you are blood rich and dirt poor.” He almost blushed as he spoke again. “And there is the matter of an English merchant's daughter in Boston.”

“Hmmm,” was all the Doctor had to say.

The sergeant continued. “Bit of a social climber, him. If I let his daughter hyphenate her name so that his surname continues and is tied to a royal clan, even if it is dispossessed of the throne, and after I make my fortune...” He laughed. “Then I can return to England and start my own ‘family’.”

The Doctor raised an eyebrow. “Seems like a sound plan, Sergeant. By the way, I never got your name.”

“It's John Stewart, Doctor.” He raised his eyes up and to the right. “With the hyphenation, it would be... mmm…Lethbridge-Stewart... Sound a bit too much of a mouthful, do you think?”

The Doctor grinned broadly. “Sounds wonderful, Sergeant. I couldn't think of a better name, myself.”

Tegan laughed. “Me, neither.” She shared a look with Turlough.

The Doctor nodded, still grinning.

The sergeant looked slightly puzzled. “Thank you all.”

“Thank you for the help, Sergeant Stewart,” said the Doctor in parting.

“Take care, Doctor, Tegan, Turlough.”

“You, too,” the Doctor said.

“We will, Sergeant. Same to you,” added Turlough.

The sergeant slung his musket across his shoulder. “Well, duty calls.” He strolled off whistling Far And Away.

“Indeed,” the Doctor said with a smile.

Tegan smiled and waved as the sergeant left.

“Fancy that,” remarked Turlough. “What would the Brigadier say?”

“He'd probably say what he usually says. ‘What in the blue blazes, Doctor? This can't be!’” The Doctor chuckled.

“Yes, he would at that.”

“That's the Brigadier for you,” agreed Tegan.

The Doctor and his companions headed off in the opposite direction for the Cherokee Village.


The Wise Woman waited with her son at the edge of the village. The Indians cheered and applauded as the Doctor, Turlough, and Tegan entered the village. “We thank you, Doctor, Turlough, and Tegan, for saving our village and perhaps the whole world.”

Dancing Wolf smiled broadly at the sight of the Doctor. “I owe you my life, sir. Tell me, what can I do to repay you?”

The Doctor stood a bit awkwardly, modestly smiling. “Well, it was the least I could do. Just live your lives as best you all can. The evil Wolf Spirit is gone, and your time of fear is over.”

Dancing Wolf nodded. “I will do my best to honour your wishes. Thank you.”

“Please, take these as tokens of our appreciation.” In her hands, the Wise Woman held three carved stone Thunder Bird fetishes. “These will remind you that there is a stronger force watching over you keeping you safe from harm.”

The Doctor took a stone Thunder Bird. “Thank you, Wise Woman. I'll treasure it.” He smiled.

Turlough took one of the stones. “Thank you for everything.”

Tegan took the remaining one. “You really didn't have to. We probably caused you more trouble than anything else.”

“It's my pleasure, child.”

“We will always tell of your courageous efforts in our tribe. You will be remembered always,” Dancing Wolf told them.

The Doctor blushed a bit, embarrassed at the attention. “Well, I think we should be going,” he said briskly.

“Yes, let's go home.” Tegan smiled at the Doctor.

“Feel free to return to our village any time,” said the Wise Woman.

The Doctor smiled at the Wise Woman and turned to leave the village, waving at the inhabitants as they departed. “Right. Home to the TARDIS? Or home to
Brisbane 1981?”

:Just home.” Tegan started off towards the TARDIS.

The Doctor nodded. “Certainly. Home is where the heart is. Or hearts.” He scratched his chest. “I do hope I didn't catch any fleas.”

When they arrived at the TARDIS the Doctor unlocked the door and gestured his friends inside before following them. The TARDIS dematerialized and the trio were off once more:::

CAST:
SpaceProg ---- 5th Doctor, Wolf Spirit, Wise Woman
TimeLadyX -----Tegan Jovanka,
FlynnKelly -----------Turlough (me!)
CodyJ---------- British Army Sergeant

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