Jack walked up Windsor Road, the commercial and retail centre of Penarth, in a fairly good mood. After the near disaster that was Friday night, the weekend had been a pleasant one. He and Ianto had slept in late Saturday morning. And when they woke, neither were in a hurry to get up. It was technically lunch time when an insistent phone ringing had impelled them to leave the warmth of the bed in Jack’s ‘lair’. It was DCI Kathy Swanson telling him that it would be first thing Monday morning before they could get the computers back on line and find the names and addresses of the detainees they had so hurriedly evacuated from what was being officially put down as a fire in the police station.
That didn’t please Jack. It left too many loose ends hanging around over the weekend. But on the other hand it meant there was nothing he could do about it until Monday. Which meant he and Ianto could have a peaceful weekend.
And they did. Peaceful, pleasant, and satisfying for them both, and on terms of mutual friendship that would not compromise their working relationship, or get in the way of Ianto’s relationship with Beth if he did decide to go along those lines.
But now it was Monday morning and Ianto was manning the front desk, Owen was up to his eyes in alien stomach contents and Gwen and Tosh were following up their share of the names and addresses of Friday night’s pissheads, brawlers, petty criminals and wife-beaters in order to Retcon away their memory of running for their lives from a man eating monster.
He was on the same mission. First on his list was one Meredith Pritchard, one of the drunk and disorderlies who they had let out of the cells. Mr Pritchard was, on a cold, sober, Monday morning, assistant manager of the Penarth branch of a well known building society.
The first one on Gwen and Tosh’s list had been easy enough. It was a woman, which surprised Tosh, but not Gwen. She’d done Friday night shifts often enough and knew that women could be as much of a public order nuisance as men. Rhian Parry of Llandaff had called in sick this morning and was still in her nightie and dressing gown, hugging a coffee mug when she answered the door. Gwen used her old police warrant card and Tosh used a fake one and said they were following up inquiries about the incident on Friday. Rhian invited them in.
“You mean about what happened at the police station,” she said, a little nervously.
“Yes,” Gwen told her. “But don’t worry. We’re not here to charge you with anything. We just want to see if you’re all right. It was a traumatic situation.”
“If there’s some more coffee going…” Tosh suggested. That eased the tension and sitting down at the kitchen table, all three of them with a mug, it was almost too simple to get her to talk about what she remembered.
“It wasn’t a fire. I heard on the radio… three detainees and two policemen were killed by fire, it said. But it WASN’T a fire. I heard something…. Something terrible. I was stuck in a cell, with another woman and a man… absolutely drop dead gorgeous man. He was totally brave. Scared stiff of what was out there, but brave. He protected both of us and got us out. He told us to just run away home. I ran until I found a payphone and reverse charged my sister. I told her I’d had too much to drink and lost my purse. I didn’t want her to know I was in the nick, let alone that some kind of axe-murderer was loose in there killing people.”
“Just so long as you’re safe now,” Gwen told her as Tosh slipped the Retcon in her coffee. “If I were you I’d go right back to bed and have a nice long sleep. When you wake up you’ll feel a lot better.”
“I do feel rather tired,” she admitted. “That’s why I called in sick. Tell you what, next Friday I’m on Britvic orange, no matter what my mates think. NEVER AGAIN.”
“Good idea,” Tosh answered. “You go on up now. We’ll see ourselves out.”
“Drop dead gorgeous?” Tosh giggled as they walked back to the car. “Totally Brave! That would be our Jack, I suppose?”
“The scared stiff bit didn’t sound like him though,” Gwen noted.
“You didn’t look at the thing Owen was starting to dissect as we started out this morning. Anyone would be scared facing that down. Even Jack.”
Owen had got onto the job first thing after swallowing his usual cup of Ianto’s extra strong expresso to wake him up. Having heard at least part of the Friday night adventure he had asked Ianto if he wanted to observe the autopsy. Ianto had smiled wryly and said he’d been up close and personal with that thing enough. But he would watch on the monitor while he tallied the petty cash account and maintained the pretence of running Cardiff’s least enticing tourist information office.
“Ianto!” Owen’s voice over the two way radio in his ear distracted him from the account book. He pressed the button that zoomed the camera in on the dissecting table in the autopsy room down in the bottom of the old coal dock, deep beneath Roald Dahl Plas. It was Owen’s domain as much as the front office was Ianto’s. “Take a look at this. Thought you might be interested, since it’s thanks to you we have this specimen.”
“That SPECIMEN killed five people before I could kill it,” Ianto replied a little coldly.
“Yeah, I read the report,” Owen answered. “You and Jack had a hell of a night. Funny thing. The stomach contents.” He held up a large jar containing greenish-yellow bile. “Not a trace of Human body parts.”
“It had digested them THAT quickly?” Ianto reacted with only a slight inflection of his voice and a raised eyebrow.
“Well, I thought it was impressive,” Owen continued. “I’m going to hold onto a couple of samples. If we could synthesise the stuff it would make disposing of bodies a lot easier. And let’s face it, there’s only a limited amount of space in the cryo-store.”
“Have you found out what the SKIN was made of yet?” Ianto asked. “Bullets were bouncing off it.”
“THAT’S the other amazing thing,” Owen answered. “Organic Kevlar! There has GOT to be a practical use for the formula. It might take me years to figure it out, but when I do…”
“What Jack mostly wants to know is what the fuck it is and whether there’s likely to be any more of them turning up.”
“I don’t think so,” Owen said. “One thing I did figure out. This creature has no sex organs. Whatever it is, it didn’t procreate. There’s no nest of junior versions about to wreak havoc in downtown Cardiff.”
“THAT is a relief,” Ianto admitted. “But if it doesn’t procreate… how did IT come about?”
“Genetic experiment?” Owen guessed. “Or some kind of mutation. But NOT from any Human origin. There is NO Human genetic material in its tissues at all. It’s definitely alien.”
“What made you think it could POSSIBLY be Human?” Ianto asked. “I mean, I know it morphed from a Human form. But that’s just some kind of disguise, surely. It was never REALLY Human.”
“I did wonder. Jack showed me a classified report a couple of weeks back. About a rather bizarre experiment at a private lab in London. This scientist was trying to reverse the ageing process and instead regressed his own DNA into some sort of primeval creature that sucked the life out of Humans.”
“Anyone else but us would think that was the plot of some lame horror movie,” Ianto observed. “But you don’t think this is the same. It isn’t a bone fide Jekyll and Hyde.”
“Well, not from planet Earth, anyway.” Owen answered. “I’d better get on with the job. This thing STINKS, incidentally. You’re well out of it, up there.”
“I’ll put on some coffee for when you’re done,” Ianto told him sympathetically. Owen gave him a thumbs up and went back to his dissection of the body. Ianto got back to the petty cash accounts.
Jack mentally kicked himself for forgetting that Meredith was one of the few unisex Welsh forenames. Meredith Pritchard was a MISS not a MR. And as he was shown into her office they both realised at the same moment that they had met before.
“Cap… tain… Harkness,” she said. “I…” She looked at the junior staff member who had shown her 9.30 appointment in. “That will be all, thank you.”
She recovered her poise well, Jack noted. He also noted that the woman he had christened Lena Hyena when she was drunk on Friday night didn’t look quite so bad in the smart skirt suit she wore for work. It fitted better than her clubbing outfit and her features were much prettier when she was sober and wearing light, conservative make up suitable for her position in the bank.
“You’re NOT here about a personal loan, are you?” she said carefully as she sat back behind her desk and signalled to Jack to take the seat the other side.
“No, ma’am, I’m not,” he answered.
“Ma’am?” She smiled ironically. “If even half of what I think I remember is true, that’s a very gallant thing to call me. Thank you, for that. But… Am I under arrest? I just ran out of the station and kept on going. Nobody stopped me. But I suppose technically it’s absconding from police custody. I… I don’t suppose it can be kept discreet. This job… if there is any question of… I know I was stupid on Friday night. I drank too much and then got into a stupid argument. And then…. Oh, God, I’d almost convinced myself that it WAS a drink-induced nightmare until you walked in here. I couldn’t have dreamt you.” She reached nervously for a glass of water and drank with slightly trembling hands.
“I’ll take that as a compliment,” he answered her. “But it really would be better if you DID forget me, and everything else that happened. I’m here to sort that out.”
“You’re kidding!” she exclaimed. “I mean, really? Like Men in Black? You’re going to make me forget.”
“Not quite like Men in Black,” he answered. “I dropped an amnesia pill in the glass of water you just drank. By the time this interview is over you’ll be feeling really sleepy and cancel the rest of today’s appointments. You’ll go and lie down on that sofa there and when you wake up you’ll never have known me, and you won’t have seen any gruesome things on Friday night. Nor will you remember putting your career at risk by getting stupidly drunk and getting arrested for kicking a nightclub bouncer in the groin with a stiletto heel.”
“I don’t regret that bit. He was obnoxious. But… Oh… Oh dear. It’s a shame I WILL forget you, though. You ARE….” She stopped speaking and blushed. “I am sorry. I would never usually say something like that. It is so unprofessional. It must be…” She looked at the glass Jack had put the Retcon drug into. “Anyway, it’s silly of me. As if a good looking man like you would be interested in an overweight, over forty, washed up…”
Jack felt guilty. It WAS the Retcon talking. It had overridden her inhibitions in much the same way the drink had on Friday night when she took to giving obnoxious bouncers what some of them deserved. But it WAS true. And he felt shitty for thinking of her in exactly those terms – ‘overweight, over-forty, washed up….’ He had looked mid-thirties for so long and had never had any problem meeting and bedding good looking people of every sex. He had never had any time for those who didn’t fall into that category. And he realised that made him a bit of a shit.
“I’m sorry,” he said to her gently as he saw her eyes starting to glaze over. He had made the sedative fairly fast-acting. He needed to get this job over and done with and get to the rest of the people on the schedule. He stood up and caught her before her head hit the desk and carried her over to the sofa.
He went to the desk and looked at her computer. He logged onto Meredith Pritchard’s appointments schedule and transferred the other three customers she was supposed to see to another assistant manager. She should be fine where she was until the sedative wore off. He stood up to leave.
As he reached for the door he heard sounds of a disturbance. Instincts honed in combat situations in several time periods and on many planets other than Earth drove him as he flattened himself against the door frame and looked out carefully.
What he saw first shocked him to the core. The bank seemed to be held up by four cybermen.
He pulled himself together quickly. It was four bank robbers in cybermen helmets. Or rather, as they were marketed by the same company that made Action Man, Robohead voice changer helmets. They, along with a collection of five inch action figures had been the must have toy last Christmas. They were one of the reasons why most people thought cybermen weren’t real. Jack could never work out whether it was a really clever idea or a really stupid one. Right now, he was thinking the latter, since they made such good disguises for the faces and voices of criminals.
He reached inside his jacket for his gun and then thought twice about it. There might be a better way to handle this than a shootout. He went back to the desk and took Meredith Pritchard’s dual use security card from the slot in the computer keyboard. Then he carefully opened the door and quietly slipped out, locking the door behind him. Meredith Pritchard was safe where she was. Ironic that this was the second time that a locked door had protected her from danger!
The robbers took nearly thirty seconds to notice him. It was long enough for him to scan the scene and see the two genuine customers kneeling on the floor with their hands on their heads. It was only half-past nine on Monday morning. They weren’t very busy yet. That was good. Less civilians in the line of fire. There were only two women at the cashier’s desk behind the glass panel and one mortgage advisor, a young male in a suit, at the open desk.
“Put up your hands,” ordered one of the robbers in his robohead distorted voice as he turned and noticed Jack standing by the door. Jack did as he was told.
“Let these people go,” he said. “Whatever you want, I’ll get it for you. Let these innocent people be.”
“Who are you?” another robohead demanded. “Keep those hands up.”
“I’m just going for my id,” he answered, moving his hand slowly to his pocket where he pulled out the id card. “I’m Meredith Pritchard, manager of this bank.”
The robohead nearest to him glanced at the lettering on the office door.
“Says there, ASSISTANT MANAGER.”
“I was promoted last week. The lazy sods haven’t sorted out my new office, yet. But if it’s the vault you want, I’m your man. Just don’t hurt anyone.”
“Take him,” the lead Robohead said. “If he’s bullshitting, kill him.”
“I’m not bullshitting. Orders from head office say if anyone tries to rob the bank we let them do it. We don’t put our lives on the line. The insurance company picks up the tab anyway.”
He stepped towards the door that led into the staff side of the security wall. “Stacy, open up the door for these nice gentlemen, would you.”
He had taken in that the girl standing with her hands in the air behind the personal customer counter was called Stacy when he presented himself half an hour ago and told her he had an appointment with Miss Pritchard. He looked directly at her and she seemed to have grasped that he was trying to help in some strange way. She moved to open the door as two of the roboheads flanked him.
“Good girl,” Jack said as he came inside. Now you and Margot sit down on the floor behind the counter. You’ll be safe there.”
“We’re giving the orders around here, not you,” the chief Robohead snarled.
“Right,” Jack answered. “So where better for them than on the floor behind the counter? Out of the way of the bullets if you lot get trigger happy.”
“Get out there with the others,” he told the two girls. “Away from silent alarms and that kind of crap.” He turned his gun on the two women and made them move out into the public lobby of the bank where the other two Roboheads could keep them all under guard. Stacy looked at him as she passed him. But Jack was looking more closely at the guns the bank robbers were carrying.
“Where did you buy those?” he asked. “They’re totally state of the art. Too good for bank robbing.”
“Shut your face and move,” he was told and the barrel of one of the guns was pushed into his back to encourage him to move down the passage that led to the locked stairwell to the vault.
There he met with a problem. The door wasn’t JUST a pass card swipe mechanism. It also needed a code entering after the card was inserted. And of course he hadn’t a clue what that was. He looked at the keypad and then at the two men with guns.
“I always have trouble with this,” he said with a disarming smile. “I keep telling head office to make it an easy code like ‘123456’. But they say that might be a security risk. Oh well, eeny meeny, miny mo… catch a martian by the toe…”
“What the fuck…” exclaimed one of the Robohead robbers as they watched his deliberate attempt to buy time.
“You’re not the bloody bank manager!” the leader declared.
“And you’re not bloody cybermen,” Jack answered. “And how come you have weapons from the 51st century? That’s a Heckler and Koch 50,000 series, used by the intergalactic police in the Human colonies of the Beta Delta and Psi Kappa sectors.”
“What are you talking about?”
“Who cares what he’s talking about?” the leader answered his subordinate. “He’s a fake. Get one of those women.” And he opened fire on Jack. Two bullets, straight to his chest. Jack gave a half smile as he crumpled and fell against the stairwell door.
He was out for about ten minutes, he reckoned, when he felt himself jerked back to life. It ALWAYS felt horrible, like waking from a nightmare with a sort of cold shock of reality, but the feeling multiplied by ten for intensity.
Still, he was alive, and he had got to like the feeling of being alive.
He stood up and felt inside his jacket for his gun. It was still there in the close-fitting shoulder holster. It wasn’t his usual WWII revolver. That was too bulky to fit inside the business suit he was wearing for this undercover job. Instead he had a compact but very lethal modern pistol with a magazine that contained far more rounds than the six shooter.
He pulled it out now and considered his next move carefully. The vault door was open and he heard the sounds of a sobbing woman and robbers emptying the vault noisily. He moved down the stairs stealthily and through the open vault door.
The woman, Stacy, sitting on the floor, saw him first and tried to turn her gasp of surprise into a hiccup, but the lead Robo-robber noticed the flicker of her eyes and turned. Jack aimed carefully. This was police business, not Torchwood business and he had no remit to shoot to kill ordinary Human beings, even scummy criminal Humans.
But there were other ways of taking down a gunman. He aimed carefully and took out lead Robohead first with a double tap to the shoulder that tore through muscles and cartilage. The gun fell from his hand as he lost the use of his fingers. The other robber turned and aimed at Jack but he didn’t have time to squeeze the trigger.
“You should have had,” Jack said as he stood over the two men watching them groan in agony on the floor. “Those guns not only have laser sighting, but they have micro-hair triggers. You could have taken me down before I took you, even in a one on one stand off. But you DON’T properly know how these weapons work, do you? You have no idea of their potential. If you did, you’d have done something more ambitious than a Penarth building society. As my friend Ianto says, you’re a bunch of fucking muppets.”
He turned and reached out for Stacy’s arm and lifted her up.
“We’ll leave those two to stew for a minute. Let’s go and find out what’s happening upstairs."
He would have to get them some first aid pretty quickly, of course, he thought as he made his way up the stairs. If the other two robbers were as easy to take down they could all go to hospital under police guard. If they wanted to make it difficult, then their colleagues would be the ones who would suffer.
As he reached the top of the stairs, though, he heard a sound that both cheered and faintly annoyed him.
“Armed Police, drop your weapon and release the hostage,” shouted an officer in police armed response uniform.
“I’m not his hostage,” Stacy managed to say. “He helped us. I don’t know who he is, but he’s a hero.”
“I’m…” Jack began, but then the armed response officer looked at him carefully.
“You’re the one from the other night,” he said. “At the station… that thing…”
“Yeah, that was me,” he answered. “You need to call an ambulance for the two down there in the vault. Do I take it that you’ve dealt with the two up here?”
The armed response team HAD dealt with them. Jack looked appreciatively at the two men lying face down on the floor with their hands cuffed behind their backs.
“There’s an unconscious woman in that room over there,” Jack said, pointing to the assistant manager’s office. “Take her to hospital too. But as for this lot…” He noticed one of the armed response team holding the weapons used by the two robbers. He took one of them from him and examined it. Yes, without a doubt this was a Heckler and Koch 50,000 series, brand new in the late 51st century where he came from, so long ago it made him dizzy to think of it. He almost felt homesick for his own time and place looking at that weapon that had somehow slipped through time.
But he had no time for sentimentality. He reached into his pocket and fixed his communicator on his ear. He pressed the button that activated it.
“Ianto,” he said into the microphone. “Put the closed sign up on the front door and come and meet me in Penarth with the SUV.” Then he turned and looked at the two men on the floor again.
“I’m taking this and HIM,” Jack said, dragging one of the men up with him and heading for Meredith’s office as she was carried out of it. He made the bank robber kneel on the floor. He looked up at the police officer hovering by the door. “I suggest you turn your back. I’m not going to use PACE rules of interrogation here and you don’t want to compromise yourself.”
The officer turned around and closed the door. Alone, Jack pressed a sequence of buttons on the rifle.
“You didn’t know how this works properly. You only had it set to fire semi-automatic projectile rounds. THIS mode emits an energy pulse that fries your brain.” He pressed the barrel against the would be bank robber’s head. “And don’t think I wouldn’t use it on a piece of shit like you.”
The robber whimpered and lost control of his bladder.
“You’ll lose a lot more in a minute if you don’t answer one simple question,” Jack said. “WHERE the bloody hell did an incompetent bunch of wankers like you GET weapons like this?”
The robber whimpered again and told him. Jack stood up and walked out of the room.
“You might want to put some plastic down on the floor of the van when you take that one in,” he said. Through his communicator he heard Ianto say he was just turning into Windsor Street now.
“I would have been a bit quicker but the traffic is a bugger this morning,” he said as Jack jumped into the passenger seat and told him to drive to Penarth Marina. “Are we going fishing, sir?”
“Shark fishing,” Jack answered and showed him the weapon he was still holding. Ianto glanced at it and then gave his attention to his driving. “They had four of these. I want to know where they came from and how many more there are.”
Ianto nodded and followed the signs for the Marina. The local weather report finished on the car radio and the song “Manic Monday” kicked in. Jack half listened to the lyric.
“I’m starting to know how they bloody well feel,” he commented. “Manic Monday? Tell me about it.”
“At least we’re not up to our armpits in an alien autopsy,” Ianto noted as he turned onto the marina road. “It’s quite nice down here.”
“Unfortunately, we’re not here for a romantic walk,” Jack answered. “It’s Monday morning, business as usual.”
Ianto noted the hint of regret in Jack’s voice and was glad. As much as they had enjoyed the weekend Ianto had no illusions that it made them an item, that they were ‘going steady’ or any such pigeonholed definition of a relationship. But he knew that there would be times, again, when both of them were at a loose end, when they could renew the intimacy they had enjoyed without any emotional ties chafing at them afterwards.
“We’re looking for a boat called The Vivian,” Jack said as they parked the SUV and started to walk up towards the Inner Basin berths. There was a security guard at a gate marked ‘permit holders only beyond this point’. Jack pulled out his psychic paper which conveniently identified him as a boat owner with the proper permits. As they passed through the gate he put his arm around Ianto’s waist. They looked like a couple as they strolled casually along the wooden decking.
“The Vivian,” Ianto said quietly, nodding towards a sports fishing boat with that name across its stern. They broke away from each other as they drew their guns and quietly boarded the boat. The deck was empty, but the door was unlocked and they equally quietly worked their way down the companionway to the narrow corridor that separated two cabins and an engine room.
“In there…” Jack said as they both heard music coming from one of the cabins. “On three.” He counted down on his fingers and then shoulder barged the door. It gave way easily.
There was one man inside, lounging on a cabin bed. He jumped to his feet as Jack and Ianto came in, reaching for a weapon identical to the ones used by the inept bank robbers. But Ianto got there first. His hand slammed down hard on the man’s arm, forcing him to drop the gun.
“Hold him there, will you, Ianto,” Jack said and he pushed up his sleeve and examined his wristlet. “Lifesigns monitor shows one Human, that’s you, Ianto, and something else. Non-Human. That would be you, chummy? So where ARE you from?”
The prisoner refused to answer. Jack picked up the futuristic Heckler and Koch and adjusted it.
“You don’t know anything about these weapons, either, do you?” he said. “You just sell them to unsuspecting fools who think they look scary enough to rob banks with. This mode… see the green laser beam as opposed to the usual red. That means it’s in heat ray mode. It would melt your face off, very painfully. And believe me, I would do it. Because I am so pissed off with the way this morning has gone, and most of it seems to be your fault. So start talking. Where did YOU get these weapons from and how many do you have?”
“In the hold,” the man admitted as Jack waved the gun near his face. “Another couple of hundred. I bought them from a flyer… you know, a private merchant. Sometimes he has alcohol, drugs, sometimes guns…”
“Private merchant!” Jack snarled. “That’s a space station euphemism for pirates. These are stolen goods. And you’re a cheap fence, the middle man.”
“I do a bit of private business, that’s all.”
“You’re going out of business. You’re Human looking enough to go to jail. And your cargo can be put into a compactor just like any 21st century metal. But I’ll have the transponder code for your “Private Merchant”. Next time he makes a delivery on Earth we’ll have a reception committee for him.”
He got the information. The second time today a prisoner had been forthcoming. That was reassuring at least. Though he had to admit it was the anachronistic weapon in his hands not his interrogation skills that made it easy.
“I’ll have Tosh watch out for that transponder signal,” Jack said as they drove back to Cardiff. “We’ll be able to stop a nasty piece of work invading Earth on a regular basis to sell contraband.”
“The morning wasn’t a total loss, then,” Ianto responded.
“I guess not. Funny thing, if I hadn’t had to go to the bank this morning none of this would have happened. And I wouldn’t have been AT the bank if we hadn’t had a man-eating monster to fight on Friday night. Life sure has some funny coincidences sometimes.”
His mobile phone rang. He looked at it and sniggered.
“Speaking of coincidences, that’s Gloria calling.” He pressed receive and greeted DCI Swanson cheerfully. He listened to what she had to say and then turned to Ianto and told him to make a detour to the police station.
The station was still in a state of chaos after being wrecked by the creature. But they had managed to find a quiet interview room to put the two visitors in. Kathy Swanson brought Jack and Ianto into the room. They looked at the two men who sat there. They WERE men, though not Human men. Jack didn’t bother to check his lifesigns monitor. The clues were subtle, but they were there. They could pass for Human at a glance but for the slightly flattened nose with oval nostrils, the pinkish tinge to the whites of their eyes, and a redness that seemed to leach through their skin as if it was only a superficial covering for a second skin beneath.
“All yours,” Kathy said. “And if they start turning into man eaters, I hope you have another of those gismos.”
“Hello,” Jack said to them. They looked at him and began to speak in their own language. Jack listened carefully, the only Human who could understand alien languages instantly. Because once he had travelled with an alien whose ship extended a unique telepathic field to any of its crew that stayed with them long after the voyage was over.
He listened then he replied to them. Ianto and DCI Swanson watched and thought he looked like an ambassador speaking in the native language to a representative of Japan or China, or someplace where bowing and nodding and hand gestures were important.
They finished with a series of mutual bows and Jack reached out and shook hands with them both. They reached and shook hands with Ianto and DCI Swanson and then left the room.
“Would you like to tell me what that was all about?” DCI Swanson asked Jack.
“Those were representatives of the government of the planet Aruhorur. They came to make an official apology for the deaths on Friday night and the other inconveniences caused. The ‘monster’ used to be one of their foremost scientists until he had the idea of manipulating his own DNA to see if he could find the next evolutionary stage of their species. Instead he found some sort of throwback. They put him in an institution, but he escaped. He somehow got to Earth and assimilated himself into Human society. But the throwback creature emerged… and we know the rest. Anyway, they apologised unreservedly on behalf of the Aruhoruran race. And… on behalf of the Human race I accepted their apology. There really wasn’t anything else I could do.”
DCI Swanson opened her mouth to speak then changed her mind. She couldn’t think of a single thing to say.
Neither could Ianto, but he couldn’t help thinking of the report Owen told him about. The scientist in London who did something extraordinarily similar.
Which seemed to prove only one thing. Earth wasn’t the only place in the universe with mad scientists.
“Let’s get back to the hub,” Jack said. He, for the life of him, couldn’t think of anything to say, either.
Just another Manic Monday.