Sunday, 23 June 2013

On The Slippery Trail

On The Slippery Trail is either the title or else it is what the Doctor is thinking about.

The stories in Adventures in Time and Space are getting even shorter now, this one is only four pages long. The Doctor and Sarah spend the first page exploring and finding clues, but don't meet any other characters. It is a bit like The Ark in Space Part One in that respect.

The dialogue is not as convincing as it was in 'The Vampires of Crellium' and we get exchanges like this:
"'If I didn't know better, I would say that this was a huge snail trail,' he remarked, fingering the slippery blades. 'Let's follow it and see if I'm right.'
'Do we have to?' shuddered Sarah. 'I never could stand creepy crawlies!'
'Softy!' grinned the Doctor, helping her to her feet."

Seeing as there aren't any cliffhangers in this story, we just get a monster appearing on page two as though that's the kind of thing that can happen at any time, and not just as a surprise at the end of part one.

Warning: the next excerpt from the story is very, very scary. Make sure you are feeling exceptionally brave or have a brave friend nearby before you read it.

"'Aaahh!' Sarah's face contorted into a scream as a huge, black, slug-like creature emerged from the undergrowth. It was moving slowly towards her, its vast mouth sucking up the vegetation like some enormous vacuum cleaner and, to her horror, she could feel the powerful suction pulling her towards the gaping orifice."

The monster is like Hoover! This story has suddenly become the scariest Doctor Who story ever. I will need Scary Cat's help to read on and see if the Doctor can save the day.


The Doctor pulls Sarah free and they escape from the monster. Phew!
"The Doctor flexed his arms and winced. 'Now I know how a wish-bone feels!' he said. 'I'm glad you're such a slip of a thing, or I wouldn't have made it!'
Sarah smiles shakily. 'Form now on, you can insult me as much as you like,' she said. 'After that mammoth effort you deserve it!'"

To cut a short story even shorter, the Doctor gets some salt and drops it on the monster, which it turns out the monster is vulnerable to for some reason, like maybe it is related to the Cybermannys or something.

"As they watched, the creature began to squirm, lashing its back end on the ground and shuddering violently. A pale liquid began to ooze out of the black skin. Slowly the huge body shrank to the ground, like some old wrinkled balloon."

With the monster defeated, the Doctor and Sarah meet some other mannys (who were, quite rightly, hiding from the creature) and the Doctor tells them to use salt if there are any more.

"The people called themselves the Anthrons, and they told the two travellers how, every solar cycle, the Jannosaur would ravage the countryside, filling its huge body with enough food to last until the next raid. No one was safe from the powerful suction, and when the time came they would all leave their homes and hide in the caves until the ugly monster had gone."

That sounds just like what happens when Hoover comes out of his cupboard. But in the story the day is saved and the Doctor and Sarah go back to the Tardis.

"'Fancy not knowing about that salt,' said Sarah. 'Their food must be pretty tasteless, mustn't it?'
The Doctor laughed. 'Perhaps I should go back and tell them that it's good on fish and chips as well, eh? It could change their lives!'"

That is the end of the story. I think it is now time for some fishy noms for me!


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