Killer Bees Episode Three;Always the Third Doctor!;Welcome to Jeri's Dr. Who fiction Page!;Doctor Who;UNIT;TARDIS;Third Doctor;Katy Manning;Jo Grant;The Master;Roger Delgado

Killer Bees

Episode 3 12/08/96

"Jo! What's happened?" Sgt. Benton asked as he met her in the visitor's room for the second time in three days. "You look like you've seen a ghost!"

"I have!" she exclaimed. "Benton, is the Brigadier back? I've seen the Master! I saw him!"

He looked startled, then offered a look of doubt. "Now, it's been years since he's showed up here on British soil. Are you sure--"

"He saw me and I saw him!" she insisted. "Do you think I could be wrong about him? I watched him drive up the street, and then he recognized me as he went by, no further from me than that chair is from you!" she insisted. "He turned full toward me when he recognized me!"

Benton made a swift decision. "The Brigadier's back today," he said. "Let's get you in to see him. I know he'll want to hear this."

They hurried up the halls on the familiar route to the Brigadier's spacious but aged and poorly furnished office. Lt. Osgood had been replaced by a female officer, a woman the same age that Jo had been when she had started her career at UNIT.

"I'm sorry, Sergeant," she said. "The Brigadier is preparing for a staff meeting and cannot--"

"Tell him it's urgent," Benton said. "It's about the Master."

Rather than speak over the intercom in front of them, the young officer got up and went into the office, closing the door behind her. Jo shot a glance at her old friend. UNIT was becoming more efficient and professional in its office procedures, apparently. The days were gone when the Doctor or others on staff could go bursting into the Brig's office unannounced.

She came back quickly. "You're to go in at once," she said. They started in, but she stepped in Jo's way. "I'm sorry Miss," she began. "Uncleared personnel--"

Jo stepped around her and went through the door.

"It's all right--" she heard Benton urging, and then she was in front of the Brigadier. He leaped up, and the look of indignant surprise gave way to recognition and pleasure as he saw her.

"Why Jo Grant!" he exclaimed softly, standing up. "It's all right, Cosgrove," he said to the woman officer. "This is an old friend. I'm sorry," he added to Jo. "It's not Jo Grant any more is it?" He crossed to her and took her hand.

She hesitated, then said. "It is again, Brigadier."

The reply stopped him, and then he nodded in understanding. "I'm so sorry." He would have added something more, but she exclaimed, "Brigadier, I saw the Master. He's here in London!"

"Close the door, Benton," Lethbridge Stewart ordered. "But stay, will you? Have a seat, Miss Grant."

She sat down, and he took one of the chairs near her, rather than the one behind his desk.

"Tell me what you saw," he directed.

"It was by the train station," Jo said. "He was in one of those foreign cars. A long dark grey car; not a Rolls Royce, but something like it. He saw me, too. He was as startled as I was."

"What time?" the Brigadier asked.

"It must have been just after 8:30. Mike dropped me off--"

"Mike?" the Brigadier asked.

"Mike Yates," she said. "We ran into each other yesterday. He's the one that the Master was following. I'm sure of it! Mike's been working on a case!"

Something in the atmosphere of the room subtly changed. Lethbridge-Stewart and Benton exchanged quiet glances.

"Miss grant--Jo," the Brigadier said kindly. "Why should the Master follow Mike Yates? What made you suppose he was following him?"

"Because he was watching Mike," she said. "Mike and I said good-bye, and then Mike got into his car, and I turned to talk to the porter, and I that was when I saw that Master--with his eyes on Mike. He got into his car quickly, as soon as he saw Mike pulling out. Then as he drove past me, he recognized me."

"And you're sure it was the Master?" the Brigadier asked uncertainly.

"Of course!" she exclaimed. "Do you think I wouldn't remember him?"

"Yates is working on a case, you say?" the Brigadier asked. "Did he tell you anything about it? Who is he with?"

"British Intelligence," she replied. "He wanted me to get reactivated and join him, but I said no."

This time, the look that went back and forth between the two men could not be hidden. Benton was standing slightly to the left of Jo and behind her. She turned to look up at him. "Don't you believe me?" she asked.

"I believe what you saw, Miss," Benton said.

The Brigadier looked gentle, but he shook his head. "Mike Yates is not with British Intelligence, Miss Grant," he told her.

"But he is," she insisted. "He told me so--"

"Yates faced a great deal of strain in his tenure here--" the Brigadier began.

"I know that!" she exclaimed. "I know what happened! But he's all right now, and he's cleared to work with Intelligence."

Benton was shaking his head. The Brigadier shot him a glare to warn him to stop.

"I have no right to pass judgment on Mike Yates," he told Jo with some dignity. "Nor would I presume to, Miss Grant. I was only too relieved after the Golden Age incident to be spared such a burden. But I assure you: Mike Yates--whatever his mental state at the time--knowingly and willingly betrayed his country and the world to its enemies. He obstructed the efforts of the law and lawfully ordained government to resolve the problem, and he endangered soldiers and civilians who were acting in the line of duty. He will never be cleared to work with any Intelligence organization--not in this country or any other."

"But UNIT doesn't fall under the jurisdiction of the English Intelligence system," Jo objected. "How could you know if Mike were an agent or not? The UN can't dictate security clearance to Britain."

"We cannot dictate," the Brigadier told her. "But we can report. I did turn in a full report of Yates' activities to the Crown."

"But he said--" she began, and then stopped.

He arched an eyebrow at her while Benton looked down. "What?" he asked. "That there was no stain on his record? There is no crime on his record," he assured her. "But the facts are there, as well as my recommendation that he be discharged from service and retired. I was sympathetic to Mike Yates," he added. "I placed a great deal of the blame for what happened on myself and on the hospitalization policies that are in place for officers recovering from mental trauma and battle fatigue." He leaned back in the chair and cocked an eyebrow at her. "But I did not hide what happened, nor did I hesitate to state that I consider Yates to be a danger to any outfit that puts him in a sensitive position."

She looked down.

"Did he describe his activities to you?" the Brigadier asked.

"He said he was on a case--looking for two missing children," she faltered.

"Missing children?" he echoed. "An Intelligence agent? Weren't you surprised?"

"Yes," she admitted. "But he said that they're the children of a leading scientist--"

"The Crowther case," the Brigadier interrupted her.

"Why yes," she said, recognizing the name. "Mike said their father is a Doctor Crowther."

The Brigadier let out his breath and did not speak.

"The Crowther case is closed, Miss," Benton told her.

"Solved?" she asked.

"Yes," the Brigadier said curtly. "The children are dead."

"Do you know that?" she demanded.

"I have known it for two months," he assured her. "And furthermore, the parents know it as well. It's true the results of the case were not released to the public at large, but anybody in Intelligence would know it, and Mike Yates would certainly not be sent out on a wild goose chase looking for two children who were probably dead before the search for them even started."

"Their bodies were found?" she asked.

"What was left of them, and it wasn't much," he told her. "But I may not discuss the matter further."

"All the same, sir," Benton added. "There's Miss Grant's claim about the Master."

The Brigadier looked thoughtful: grim and thoughtful.

"Weakest link, sir?" Benton asked suddenly.

"That's what I'm afraid of," the Brigadier replied.

"What?" Jo asked.

Lethbridge Stewart met her eye with his. "You recall how difficult it was to resist the Master," he reminded her. "Eventually, under the Doctor's tutelage, you did learn. How resistant would Mike Yates prove, do you think? Especially with his history."

"You think the Master will prey upon him to get information?" Jo asked.

"It's very possible," Benton said. He glanced at the Brigadier. "Or it may have happened already."

Jo opened her mouth to protest the very idea that Mike Yates could be working as an accomplice--or even a slave--of the Master. But she stopped. She herself had been dominated by him once.

Brigadier Lethbridge Stewart stood up. "You are in danger, Miss Grant," he said. "I must ask you to stay here at UNIT HQ or leave London at once. We will try to locate the Master and intercept him before he reaches Mike Yates." He glanced at Benton. "I want Yates brought in. For his own protection," he ordered. "We can detain him on some pretext or other until this blows over." He glanced at Jo. "What is your decision, Miss Grant. We are willing to offer you protection here," he said.

"I'm leaving London," she said. "Good-bye, Brigadier."

* * * *

The morning had clouded over by the time Jo left UNIT H.Q. The Brigadier had been anxious, wanting to see her to the train station, but she declined his offers of being her escort. She felt foolish and humiliated and did not want to see or talk to anybody--especially anybody from the past.

She knew that the station would be crowded and busy with the morning trains, and there was not much danger of being harmed by the Master before she got away. Her luggage was still sitting on the curb where she had left it (she hoped), and she did not want to wait for the Brigadier to bring up his car and make arrangements for the staff meeting he would have to miss if he took her to the station.

Benton called a cab for her while she provided the Brigadier with all the particulars of where Mike was staying, what type of car he weas driving, and what he had been wearing that morning. Some part of her still wanted to believe in him, but this was no time to waver. If anything, the forces of UNIT would protect him from the Master. And if he had been truthful with her, and the Brigadier and Benton were both wrong about him, then he should be able to prove to them that he was an Intelligence Officer. But all she wanted to do was get away. Because really, most of her believed the Brigadier. She rebuked herself for being convinced by Mike so easily. The last thing that the Brigadier did while they waited for the cab was to take her into the secured file room and show her the file on the Crowther children.

"Very unusual case," he told her. "The remains of the children were found by a team of specialists in DNA research."

"This says they were reduced to dust!" she exclaimed, reading the report.

"Precisely. All the water removed from their bodies, as well as all the Potassium and sodium. Had the search team not known what it was looking for, it would have missed them entirely."

She looked up at him. "What a horrible death," she said with a sort of stricken wonder. "Who killed them? And how?"

He shook his head. "I cannot discuss it," he told her. "But the case is closed; the culprit is known. In fact, it was the children's father who committed the crime, but he has escaped English law and is gone abroad. We know where he is--one of those little countries hostile to the Western world." He looked down at her. "I'm sorry," he added. "Profoundly sorry. If I were to want anything, Jo, it would be that Mike Yates would recover fully, that the last few years of his life would be wiped away, and that he could return to active duty."

"I wouldn't," she said with some heat. "I would wish him far away from here: recovered, yes, but far away from all this."

He did not answer her, and that ended the interview.

She left in the cab and rode away vowing never to come back, never even to look back. She was still trusting and naive, still prone to believe that people could be what they seemed to be, she told herself. She still clung to the idea that somehow the good old days could be enshrined, never tainted, never tarnished. How she hated herself at times. There were parts of her that just would not grow up.

The cab quickly traced the now familiar route to the train station from UNIT HQ. Forlorn but upright, its tags whipped by the fierce and gusty wind, her luggage sat on the curb where she had left it, and right next to the bags, pacing restlessly and shivering in the very fresh air, was the man himself: Mike Yates. She glanced at her watch. It was nearly ten thirty. He must have returned from whatever business had called him out and seen her luggage still sitting there.

For a moment, Jo Grant forgot that he was in danger from the Master, that he was probably mentally unstable. She was only angry, and her cheeks burned crimson at the thought of how foolishly she had believed in him. She had even kissed him, daring to rekindle old, slumbering feelings in herself--and in him--which she now detested.

"Jo!" he exclaimed as she got out and paid the driver.

She turned and glared at him. The cab pulled away.

She had no idea what she woudl say, but the first words that came out of her mouth were emphatic and said it all.

"The children are dead!" she exclaimed. She picked up the bags. They were too heavy for her to make a grand exit, but she staggered away from him.

"Jo!" he exclaimed, coming after her.

She turned to glare at him again, since she could not outdistance him. A porter came running to help. The man with the shoe shining kit was on the other side of the platform, his back to them, working on something in his kit.

"I said, the chidlren are dead!" she exclaimed. "Known dead for two solid months!"

"Keep your voice down!" he hissed.

"You lied to me!" she said. "You lied about everything--all of it!"

The porter took the bags. "I want the next train out of here," she said. "North, but I don't care where."

"That'll be track two, Miss," he said. "Ten minutes."

Mike caught her arm and she snatched herself away from him. "Don't touch me!"

"Wil you listen to me?" he snapped. "I asked you twice to let me get you reactivated," he reminded her. "I had to use my cover story with you. I couldn't tell you the truth until you had clearance!"

"That's a laugh!" she exclaimed. "The Brigadier verified to me that you're not with Intelligence. You've been permanently retired. He knows it, and now I know it too." She stopped as her words became too scornful even for her to bear. No matter what, Mike Yates had gone to the edge to save her time and again, and she owed him something: kindness, at least.

Before she could speak again, he asked, "You went to the Brigadier?"

"I saw the Master," she said, and her anger suddenly abated as she remembered that Mike truly was in some sort of danger. She did not really believe that he was under the Master's influence already. He had been too relaxed and natural with her, too genuinely glad to see her, to be dominated by the Master's crude but iron form of hypnosis.

"What do you mean?" he asked her.

"He's here. I saw him this morning," she said. "He was following you. I'm sure of it."

"Yet you don't believe that I'm with Intelligence, Jo?" he asked her. "I've got to make you understand--"

"No!" she exclaimed. "I'm leaving, Mike. You lied once to me. I won't give you the chance to do it again."

"Jo, please!" he exclaimed as she walked away. She boarded the waiting train. Just as she did, they heard a piercing whistle, the sharpest, loudest, fingers-between-the-teeth whistle that either of them had ever heard. It cut down the platform like an alarm. Still on the stair steps of the car, she looked back, and so did he. Two UNIT men were on the platform. She realized that one was Sgt. Benton, probably sent by the Brigadier to make sure she left safely.

Mike missed them at first. His attention was drawn to the shoe shine man, who was just taking his fingers from his mouth. In the cool morning, his head and face were lost in the depths of a corduroy hood. Then Mike saw the UNIT men, just as they saw him. They hurried toward them. Yates backed up warily and glanced at Jo, shocked.

She was instantly sorry for him--to be caught in a lie was one thing, to be shamed before his old comrades was something else.

"This is to protect you," she said. "The Master will kill you if he gets a chance."

"I don't deserve this!" he exclaimed, but he wisely did not try to run, and then they were on him, one on either side.

"I want to ask you to come with us, Captain Yates," Benton said to him, but Mike's eyes were fixed on her. She hurried into the car.

She could not watch through the windows as the two soldiers spoke earnestly to him in low voices, and Mike--face gone ashen--vigorously shook his head and darted his eyes from one to the other. She realized what she had surrendered him to. Benton was a professional soldier and a decent man, but the other soldiers--many of them--knew what Mike had done and would not be kind to him.

She kept her head down, feeling sick, and hurried down the aisle of the coach.

A man in front of her stopped her, his body like a wall. There were still 8 minutes until the train was due to pull out. Jo suddenly realized that she was alone in the coach with two men, one in front of her and one behind her. Out on the platform, Mike was setting his feet and speaking with the rapid desperation of a man who fears being taken away and locked up. His attention, Benton's attention, and the other soldier's attention were all interlocked, and they were not looking at the train, though Jo was plainly visible.

The man behind her casually walked up behind her, cutting off all retreat.

"You'll like this ever so much better if you act sensible," the man in front of her said. In spite of a fine and heavy suit, his accent was pure Cockney. He nodded down at his own chest, and she saw a long, vicious switchblade in his hand, hidden from the view of others by his expensive wool coat.

It had been over three years since Jo had tried any serious self defense. Venusian Aikido had never been of much help to her since it relied so much on using one's weight to throw a person off balance in a struggle. The Doctor, often exasperated at her sheer lightness and smallness, had industriously tried to instill the principles of Chin Na and Chi Sao in her, the grappling and seizing arts of Chinese fighting.

She slammed her right hand into the man's knife wrist as she slid her curved hand like a hook into his elbow and jerked it toward herself.

The two quick gestures knocked the knife into his own sternum, but the blow was badly aimed. The side of the knife merely slapped his chest, though the surprise of it made him jump. He nearly lost his weapon and fumbled for it. Jo slithered past him to get away. "Mike!" she screamed. "Benton!" The three men on the platform sprang into action, but Mike moved first. He stamped on the soldier's foot and rushed past him, trying to intecept Jo to get between her and danger.

In the car of the train, the two men came after her as she tried to get out the rear door on the platform side. They fell on top of her and brought her down. Mike clambered up the steps, and the larger of the two men leaped up and planted a foot in Mike's chest as he came up the steps and knocked him backwards.

The car had a door on either side. They pulled Jo down the far steps and pushed her out onto the tracks below. She fell to the ground heavily. They leaped down and dragged her away. Mike vaulted up the steps again, crossed the aisle, and came down the steps on the other side. He leaped to the ground. A train was coming in. Behind him, up above, Benton and the soldier were coming after him.

He sighted the two kidnappers bodily carrying Jo across the many rows of tracks used for siding. Benton poked his head out of the doorway above. Mike hesitated long enough to let the incoming train get closer, then raced it, trying to get across in front of it before it ran him down. He got across the track in time to make it safely, but it cut him off from the view of Benton and the other UNIT man.

The two kidnappers were not able to maintain a distance with the burden of Jo between them. One of them broke away and ran towards him while the other dragged Jo across the barren train yard.

Jo struggled as much as she could, all lessons in self defense forgotten. She saw Mike trying to close the disatance and kicked harder as one of the men broke off to intercept him. Her captor grimly jerked the silk scarf from around his neck and wrapped it around hers. One twist, and her breath was utterly cut off.

"Quit fighting!" he exclaimed. He loosened it a moment, then tightened it again and used it as a garrote to force her along. They picked up speed. But nobody can run very long while being garroted into submission. As her run turned into a stumble, he slung her over his shoulder. She heard the sound of a car engine at a low rumble. A car was sliding alongside them. She felt herself thrown in and heard a familiar voice say, "No, you go back and take care of him. I can't trust you two to do anything. Meet me at the boat tonight."

The scarf slipped from around her neck. She drew in her breath in a great heave, and as her vision cleared, she saw the neat, dark figure of her long time adversary across from her.

She slammed herself into the door to get away, but there was no handle.

"Calm yourself, Miss Grant," the Master said. "You will not leave my car until I say so." He was not driving. Another man was at the wheel, and the Master and she shared the back seats, which faced each other.

"You will get on the floor," he said to her.

She only looked at him. Suddenly, he gripped her hair at the top of her head and pulled forward so that she fell to the floor of the car on her knees. When her vision cleared from the pain, the muzzle of a gun was in her face.

"Tell me what I so want to hear," he ordered her. "Say it. This time you say it to me."

"What?" she asked.

But he jerked her head back by the hair with his free hand and pushed the gun into the center of her forehead. "Say it!" he ordered.

She let out her breath and took it in and said, "The Doctor is dead." And her eyes filled with tears.

"Say it again!" he exclaimed.

"The Doctor is dead," she repeated.

"Again!" And he shook her head by his grip on her hair.

"The Doctor is dead!" she exclaimed.

He forced her head back so that she had to look up at him, sitting on the car seat as though it were a throne, with her on her knees before him.

"Dead!" he exclaimed, satisfied. "And here you find yourself, Miss Grant. My guest once more."

"You came once he died," she gasped.

"I came and I discovered that he is dead," he corrected her. "I had made my plans to deal with him, but I discovered that he is no longer with those cloddish soldier friends of his."

In spite of her fears, she was puzzled. Surely, the Master knew about the regenerative process. He was a timelord himself.

"UNIT without the Doctor?" he asked, half to himself and half to her. He laughed. "Could it be? And then I found that you were gone, that Captain Yates had gone around the twist, as they say here. So, he's dead, I told myself. He must be dead. That silly teen age girl would never leave him." He looked down at her, his face a mask of hatred and--oddly enough--envy. "Would you?" he asked.

"No," she lied. "I never would."

He offered her the muzzle of the gun. "Tell me how he died," he ordered.

"There was a crystal, " she said. "And a planet of spiders. They forced him to bring them a crystal that he had taken, and when he brought it to them, he was exposed to something--I don't know what--it killed him. It altered the cells in his body somehow."

"So he could not regenerate," he said quietly, with deep satisfaction. She understood now that he was not really informed about the Doctor's death--that he was working on assumptions, the chiefest being that--even regenerated--the Doctor would not leave Earth. It was a fair assumption for the Master's experience. He knew the Doctor as the protector of Earth, the friend to UNIT, the champion, teacher, and mentor of Jo herself, and--to a lesser extent--Mike Yates and Sgt. Benton.

"He has left you sorely unprotected, Miss Grant," the Master observed. "He has left you to taste my anger and my frustration from all the years of being thwarted." He moved the muzzle of the gun down from her forehead to the small indentation between her eyes. "That was not a fair thing for him to do to you."

"The worst you can do is send me to him," she said evenly.

"I intend to," he told her. "But there's no need to soil the car. And I would rather see you go through the dying process then have it be too fast. No, let me give those soldier friends of yours something to look for, and something to find."

"But why have you come?" she asked him. His eyes flashed at her questioning of him, and he raised the gun to strike her, then smiled indulgently and let the moment pass. "I have come for revenge," he said to her. "But not even revenge against the Doctor or his allies. No, you are an added bonus in another quest I must fulfill."

"Where are you taking me?"

"To a watery grave," he assured her. "The Thames is such a dark, ugly, stinking thing. But in the winter it makes a lovely escape, a lovely place to maintain a base of operations, a lovely place for many things." He raised his dark eyes to survey the winter landscape as it rolled by.

"Look, Miss Grant," he said, nodding at the window and reversing the gun in his hand. "Take your last look at this wretched hole that you call home. Do as I say and look at it."

She turned her head and looked up through the car windows. The butt of the gun struck the back of her head, and she fell forward onto the floor, senseless.

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