Glasgow Nights (Doctor Who RPG)

Episode #4: Zygons and Psychics, Oh My!

22nd – 24th November, 2016

Having finished their business on Islay, the team arrived back at Torchwood Two with Melanie Bryers and Fiona Seathanach in tow. Trevor Rothberry immediately took the Tesseract to his laboratory, while Alice Kingston took Melanie (still sleeping from the effects of Retcon) home. Meanwhile, Henry Taylor began to set Fiona up with an office space which she would use as a sleeping area at Torchwood Two. Charlie Williams sat down to write her reports about the incidents on Islay, while Elizabeth Davies (as the nominal leader of the team) started the paperwork to set Fiona up as an official part of the team and to requisition new vehicles to replace those lost.

Shortly after, Elizabeth examined the shrine from the other Henry’s flat, hoping to find more clues to help put together what was going on. While she didn’t find any more clues about the other Henry or his extracurricular activities, Elizabeth did find something that gave her pause: surveillance photos of Melanie Bryers. Henry had been watching her, even before they had slept together! Elizabeth hurriedly called Alice, hoping to inform her of this before she stumbled into a trap at Melanie’s flat.

Meanwhile, Alice was just getting into her car after leaving Melanie’s flat, and while talking with Elizabeth she realized she had just seen two trenchcoated men entering the building. Alice rushed into the building, while Elizabeth, Henry, and Charlie mobilized. Alice crept upstairs toward the hallway outside Melanie’s flat, when she heard a loud crash as one of the men pounded on Melanie’s door with a superhumanly-strong fist, knocking the door off its hinges and into the flat.

The only other sound Alice could hear for a second after was a scream from Melanie, right out of B-movie horror. While the two men were stunned, Alice was further away and had expected the scream, so she was able to capitalize on their distraction. She leapt at them, body-checking them both onto the floor outside the flat.

One of the men, the one who had unhinged the door, let out an inhuman hiss but was otherwise unharmed. A bit put off by this reaction, Alice pulled out her stungun and stabbed at the hissing fellow with it. It seemed to have little effect, except to anger him enough to change form – into a Zygon. His comrade, apparently human, panicked and fled from the building. Alice entered the flat and headed for the bathroom, pulling Melanie with her to what she hoped would be a more defensible position.

Meanwhile, the rest of the team arrived outside, just in time for Henry to intercept the second man, Chris Parsons. Attempting both persuasion and mind reading, all he could get through Parson’s panic were an image of the Zygon who was once his partner in crime and a single word: Durdin. Elizabeth and Charlie headed toward the flat to help.

The Zygon burst into the bathroom, apparently intent on doing away with Alice and Melanie. Alice had given up on the stungun and squirted a bottle of shampoo at it. Distracted, the Zygon stumbled back into the living room, just in time to receive a fatal double-tap from Charlie’s pistol.

Now in control of the scene, Elizabeth kept the hallway clear so the neighbors wouldn’t know about the Zygon. She then texted Susan Pham: “Dead Zygon for pickup.” Then the team returned, with Melanie, to Torchwood Two.

During all of this, Trevor was examining the Tesseract. Unsurprisingly, he found that it was a source of Artron Energy, but he didn’t expect to find that it had the same Artron signature as the spacetime fissure they had found at the Rinns of Islay Lighthouse. The emissions were potentially dangerous with continued exposure, and Trevor discovered that the artifact was a sort of case that itself contained a spacetime fissure.

Once the team returned, Trevor took the Tesseract to Fiona, hoping her powerful psychic abilities and intimate familiarity with the fissure at her lighthouse might yield some further insight. She stared at it for a while, then told them, “This is the mother of the lighthouse.” She then rotated it a bit, pointed to Henry, and continued, “That’s where he’s from.” Apparently, it was possible to “tune” the Tesseract to reach many different worlds, Henry’s universe being one of them. Henry then took the Tesseract and tuned in his own world again, and then a flash of light threw him backward and a “baby fissure” formed on the desk next to the Tesseract.

At that point, Trevor took the Tesseract back to the lab to secure it. He then set Neuromancer to the task of running a multitude of scenarios about the artifact. It came up with the following conclusions:

  • The Tesseract is a technological (though highly advanced) device that is currently turned on. It might be possible to turn it off if the correct settings can be found.
  • There is no known shielding against Artron radiation, only distance.
  • It might be bad to expose a fetus to Artron radiation. This might be relevant because it’s unknown how much Artron radiation Melanie’s fetus has absorbed thus far.

Later, Henry interrogated Chris Parsons, the second man whom the team had met at Melanie’s flat. It seemed to confuse Parsons, as he claimed, “ You gave me the order to take Melanie.” Henry concluded that his doppleganger was involved and successfully used Parsons’ confusion to his advantage, carrying on the charade of being Parsons’ boss, still under cover. Elizabeth came in later, pretending to be a police inspector and helping with the interrogation:

  • Why did you try to kidnap Melanie? “She is a threat to the cult if left in the open.”
  • Where were you to take her? “We were supposed to take Melanie to the Kelvingrove.”
  • What else were you tasked to do? “We were supposed to find her friend. She might know where we can find Johann.”
  • Who was the other guy? “His name was Colin Purcell, but I don’t know what he is now.”
  • What is he? “I don’t want to remember that.”
  • What will you do if I can get you released? “I have the backup line.” He then gave a phone number, which the team later found rings to the Holy Trinity Church, in Ayr.

Meanwhile, Alice and Trevor were talking with Melanie, while Trevor made tea. Alice played the proverbial wrecking ball, telling Melanie that “you have a bun in the oven.” Having just recovered from Retcon, she had no memory of her roadside tryst with Trevor. "I need to talk to Harry,” Melanie whispered nervously.

Following the interrogation, Trevor gave Parsons some sedative-laced tacos. Once Parsons was unconscious, the team released him back in the field, albeit with a subcutaneous tracker implanted. As he had indicated, Parsons immediately went to the backup plan and made the phone call. The team continued to surveil him as he walked into Once in a Blue Moon. They found him only minutes later, stabbed and thrown into a dumpster.

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