|Doctor Who Companion Internet Adventure #05 - "Point of Destruction"
"Possession is the Letter of the Law"
by Kris Herzog
Alison screamed and promptly passed out. Josiah/Keith looked down at the unconscious body.
* * *
Liz woke up some time later, feeling the hard wood beneath her back. She made the safe assumption that they had not moved her. Opening her eyes slowly, she began to make out the ceiling of the church.
"She awakes..." came the voice known as Lorraine. Liz struggled to sit up. "Better to keep still for now; the damage was a bit severe. It took some work, but we patched it up."
"We?" Liz asked, almost if she knew the answer.
"I think you know the answer, Miss Shaw. You had your suspicions, and you're not too far from the truth. You're lucky I arrived in time. The Congregation would have killed you."
"Don't thank me yet. You've been spared for one reason. They need you."
"Need me? For what?" Liz asked.
"A new host." Lorraine replied plainly.
* * *
Mortimer had heard the scream come from the next room, and was slightly annoyed by the disturbance. Turning back to his notebook, he began to jot down a few more notes into his notebook. A knock came at the door.
"In a minute..." Mortimer replied to the door. He carefully placed the notebook in the hidden bottom of the suitcase and made his way to the door.
He opened the door slowly, as the doors lacked a peephole. "Who is it?"
"Mister Burns?" the voice came from the other side. Mortimer looked out and saw a man standing there. He was dishevelled and looked pale.
"I told you already, I AM NOT RAMON BURNS!" he shouted at the figure through the tiny crack in the door.
"Yes, well, Mr Burns, if you'd please, we're ready for the opening ceremonies to begin, and we do need your presence."
Mortimer closed the door. "I'll be right out." He turned back and inspected the suitcase, making sure the false bottom had been covered back up.
* * *
"You see, Miss Shaw, the H'Rongi are a species that maintain their consciousness amongst a mass group." Lorraine sat alone in the chapel, seated next to Liz.
"A hive mind?" Liz asked.
"Yes and no. They can share thoughts and ideas, just like a hive, but they also can shut the others out. Deny the others access. A sort of safety measure in the case of capture. They have free will within the consciousness, and they know anything the others know, but the hosting process tends to remove the creative processes. Renders them incapable of any... unique thought."
"Then how did they come up with the idea of all this?" Liz raised her arms to encompass the church. "The festival, the town... all this was just here?"
Lorraine shook her head. "In the past, they've... recruited individuals to help them keep things... up-to-date. In return, well, let's just say that the person never has to worry again." Lorraine had a worried look on her face. Liz read it as a sign that Lorraine might have said more than she should have.
Liz decided to press her advantage. If she was going to find out anything about her captors, she had to move forward. "So what kind of people do these 'H'Rongi' recruit?"
Lorraine seemed to think for a moment, then answered the question. "People with superior intellect, people with a keen eye and sharp wit. People who have an imagination. That is why you've been chosen to be a new host to the Co-ordinator."
"Yes, Miss Shaw?"
"When were you chosen to be the host?" she looked at Lorraine in complete comprehension.
"At the last festival. Fifty years ago." Liz gasped; Lorraine hardly looked more than 30 years old. "The H'Rongi hive mind requires a co-ordinator, usually the male host. That host needs to be intelligent, sharp, and well-grounded."
"And you, Lorraine?" Liz asked.
"I am the Planner. We are the creative mind-force." At this point, Liz knew she was no longer talking to Lorraine, but the mind of the H'Rongi themselves.
"Obviously, you intend to have me take over as the Co-ordinator, but who do you have to take over the Planner? Obviously, it must be a limited amount of time you can possess each body. I'd hazard a guess that every 50 years you have to change bodies in order to stay alive."
"You have guessed well, Miss Shaw. You will be an excellent Co-ordinator." Planner/Lorraine spoke. The doors to the chapel opened. A man was leading another man.
The pale one spoke. "Planner. I have the new host."
"Thank you, Josaiah." Josaiah/Keith sat in a pew near the door. Mortimer looked around in the empty chapel. "Mister Burns. We have been awaiting your arrival for some time," came the voice of Planner/Lorraine.
Throwing the mask of pretence aside, Mortimer stepped up to the challenge.
"So, when does the party start?" he looked around for a buffet table.
"Soon." Planner/Lorraine walked over to Mortimer and grabbed him by the arms.
"HEY! What's THIS!!??!!!" Mortimer yelled. He struggled in the grip of Planner/ Lorraine.
"It is useless to resist." She moved her head closer and began to kiss Mortimer. Liz could see a small wormlike structure wriggle about in Planner/Lorraine's mouth and move into Mortimer's. Lorraine's grip on Mortimer loosened and he pushed her away.
"Now, Miss Shaw," said Planner/Mortimer, "we must ready you for the Co-ordinator..."
To be continued...
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