by VICTOR PEMBERTON
first broadcast - 14th March 1968
(The TARDIS comes zooming down from the sky to land with a plop in the middle of the ocean. Remaining just above the waves, the TARDIS crew throw out a rubber dinghy and start paddling towards the shore. After a while the rubber dinghy reaches the beach - the DOCTOR proceeds to help VICTORIA out.)
DOCTOR: There Victoria, up you get.
JAMIE: Trust you to bring us right down in the middle of the sea.
DOCTOR: The TARDIS is perfectly capable of floating you know.
VICTORIA: (Looking around) Where are we exactly?
DOCTOR: Oh England undoubtedly.
JAMIE: Aye, you can tell by the weather.
DOCTOR: And by the cliffs.
VICTORIA: We always seem to land on this planet.
JAMIE: Aye, it s always England. You'd think for all the hammering the TARDIS has got, you've gone an' spiked it
(The DOCTOR bends down to inspect the foam that seem to be covering this stretch of the coast.)
Hey what are you doing. Hey what's all this stuff Doctor?
VICTORIA: Foam you silly. You often see the stuff along the sea shore.
JAMIE: But not big lumps like this aye Doctor?
DOCTOR: No, not usually. Jamie. Hey Jamie, feel that.
(The DOCTOR splatters a handful of foam into JAMIE's face. The three are subsequently consumed in a foam fight. Their playful fight leads them towards to a pipe near the base of a cliff.)
JAMIE: Hey, look at that. May be that's where the foam's coming from.
DOCTOR: Oh I hardly think so, Jamie. Let s go and see.
(Unbeknownst to the time travellers their movements are being observed by a man sheltering behind an out-crop of rocks. He has them through the sites of his tranquiliser rifle.)
JAMIE: What is it?
DOCTOR: Just what it says, Jamie. Euro Sea Gas.
JAMIE: Gas from the sea? Oh, who are you trying to kid?
VICTORIA: And it has nothing to do with the foam then.
DOCTOR: No. No, I shouldn't think so.
(The DOCTOR notices a black metallic box sitting on the pipe and tries to pry it open with his hands with little success.)
JAMIE: Would it not budge?
DOCTOR: No, can't budge it, I'm afraid Jamie. Ah well, have to use this.
(From his pockets the DOCTOR produces a tubular device.)
It's a Sonic Screwdriver. Never fails.
(The DOCTOR applies it to the screws on the top of the box and they begin to unscrew themselves - a soft humming sound is coming from the sonic screwdriver.)
There we are. Neat isn't it? All done by sound waves. Now what have we got here.
(The DOCTOR peers into the newly opened black box.)
(There is a faint noise coming from the pipe.)
JAMIE: What is it? What's that noise?
DOCTOR: I don't know Jamie.
(The DOCTOR produces a stethoscope from his pockets and applies it to the pipe.)
There's a heart beating....
VICTORIA: I can hear it too.
DOCTOR: Yes. Probably throbbing from a pump, you know.
VICTORIA: Doctor please hurry up. I don't like this place. It's so quiet. I feel as if we're being watched.
DOCTOR: Alright Victoria.
(The man that has been monitoring them, raises his rifle and takes aim. JAMIE is shot and collapses.)
(The DOCTOR soon joins him as he is subsequently shot down.)
VICTORIA: Doctor!!! DOCTOR!!!
(Another quick shot and Victoria collapses on her friends.)
(The DOCTOR, JAMIE and VICTORIA lie on the floor of the Control room. Guards with rifles stand over them. Slowly the effects of the tranquiliser darts begin to wear off, and the trio regain consciousness.)
DOCTOR: Victoria..... Jamie you there?
VICTORIA: I can't move..... my legs.
JAMIE: What happened?? What do you want?
DOCTOR: Would someone kindly tell us where we are?.............Why don't you answer?
JAMIE: Come on where are we?
VICTORIA: What have they done? Can't move.....
DOCTOR: I think we've......we've been tranquilised Victoria. Tranquilised.
JAMIE: Eh? Who do they think they are?
(ROBSON - the Chief of the Euro Sea Complex - and his second in command - HARRIS - move over to the prostrate trio on hearing their raucous.)
ROBSON: We should be the ones asking the questions. I expect quite a lot of answers.
JAMIE: What is this place?
ROBSON: You mean you don't know?
JAMIE: If only I could just get up....
ROBSON: I wouldn't try if I were you.
DOCTOR: You know in this condition it's just a little difficult to communicate.
HARRIS: Shall we give them some U4 sir?
ROBSON: Yes. Do that Mr. Harris.
(HARRIS, with canisters of U4, begins administering it to the trio despite their protests.)
VICTORIA: Oh no.
DOCTOR: I think it's alright Victoria.
DOCTOR: I think it's an antidote. There's nothing we can do about it you know...
(HARRIS stands back as the U4 begins to take effect on the three strangers.)
Oh yes. That's better.... Thank you. Thank you very much.
ROBSON: You were on the beach, by the pipe line, in a restricted area. Now why?
VICTORIA: We were lost that's all.
ROBSON: You were tampering with the emergency release valve remote control. You're a saboteur.
VICTORIA: He's not. He's a doctor.
DOCTOR: I can assure you. I was only being curious.
HARRIS: I don't really think how they could have anything.....
ROBSON: When I want your opinion Harris, I'll ask for it. In the mean time, lock them up in one of the cabins. I'll interrogate them later. (To the Technicians at their posts) And you lot get back to work.
(ROBSON turns and walks off back to his duties.)
JAMIE: Is he always as charming as that?
HARRIS: We're in something of an emergency at the moment. You see we've lost contact with one of our rigs at sea.
DOCTOR: Communications have broken down?
HARRIS: No that's what's so curious about it. As far as we can tell our video link is functioning normally. The crew just aren't answering.
VICTORIA: You can't blame us for that surely.
HARRIS: There's also been a drop in pressure in the feed line from the rigs. You were seen tampering with the release valve on the pipe line.
DOCTOR: I told you I was merely being curious.
HARRIS: Were you?
JAMIE: Are you calling us liars?
HARRIS: No. But you must admit your sudden appearance here inside our restricted area is suspicious.
VICTORIA: That's no reason to shoot us down like animals.
HARRIS: Maybe not but we were under security alert and Mr Robson....well is under considerable pressure himself. I'm sorry but I shall have to do what he says and lock you up.
DOCTOR: Oh dear.
HARRIS: Would you... er... follow me?
JAMIE: Why do we always...
(His voice drifts off as the trio follow HARRIS and a guard out of the control area.)
(A guard stands watch as a woman - MRS MAGGIE HARRIS - approaches the barriers.)
GUARD: May I see your pass please madam?
GUARD: I have instructions that no one is to leave or enter the compound without a written pass from chief Robson. Not until after the emergency.
MAGGIE: But you know who I am. My husband is second in command to Chief Robson.
GUARD: Yes Mrs Harris, I ...
MAGGIE: Then let me pass....please.
GUARD: Sorry madam. I think you should return to the residential block.
(The DOCTOR's group are led in, whilst the guard stands watch in the door way.)
HARRIS: I'm sorry but there is nothing I can do to help you until you tell me what you were doing with that release valve on the pipe line.
DOCTOR: It wasn't the valve I was interested in.
DOCTOR: I heard a movement coming from inside the pipe.
HARRIS: (Noticing the guard) Oh it's alright you can go.
DOCTOR: Yes. Movement. Don't ask me what it was.
HARRIS: I'm not sure what you re trying to suggest, but I can assure you marine life couldn't possibly get inside the pipe line tube. It would never get pass the drill pumps.
JAMIE: Aye, that's it. May be there was something inside that tube because I heard it too.
VICTORIA: And so did I.
DOCTOR: Well if the pressure is down in the pipes, perhaps that's the reason why - marine life has got into the pipe.
HARRIS: But that's impossible. We've spent years of time, money and research into perfecting our emergency system.
DOCTOR: Well, perhaps there's a fracture in the pipes - a break and something has got in that way?
HARRIS: Oh I doubt it.
DOCTOR: Mr Harris. I don't wish to appear interfering but don't you think it'd be a good idea to turn off the gas - at least until you've had a chance to check.
HARRIS: Chief Robson would never agree to that.
DOCTOR: Why not?
HARRIS: Well he doesn't believe in working to the book. He prides himself that the flow has never been shut off ever since he took charge.
DOCTOR: Well he sounds like a very silly man.
HARRIS: Hmmm. But he appears to be right about one thing. You seem to know quite a lot about our business.
(ROBSON and the communications officer - PRICE - are clustered near the communications cone.)
PRICE: Ah, Chief. We've gained contact with Rig D. Come in Rig D. Come in please. Rig D. Can you hear me please?
(The face of Carney appears on the monitor.)
CARNEY: (Whispering) Yes. Rig D to HQ. I can hear you.
ROBSON: CARNEY? What the dickens is going on out there?
CARNEY: (Whispering) Everything is quite alright, Mr Robson.
CARNEY: (Whispering) We have the situation under control.
ROBSON: Would you speak up man. I can't hear a word you're saying.
CARNEY: (Whispering) Don't worry....
ROBSON: Price, are we losing volume?
PRICE: No, sir. I don't understand. Could you speak up a little louder Mr Carney?
CARNEY: (Whispering) Everything is under control.
ROBSON: Carney? What happened to the emergency crew we sent you? Have they arrived yet?
CARNEY: Yes.....Yes... But they must stay here for the time being.
CARNEY: They had a slight accident. Two men out of action.
ROBSON: Now listen Carney. You get that rig fixed A1 and quick.
CARNEY: But it will take some time.
ROBSON: What? What did you say? What's wrong with this thing.
PRICE: I don't know, sir. It must be their end. He seems to be whispering.
CARNEY: Everything is under control.
ROBSON: Carney, speak up man.
CARNEY: Everything is under control.
(The signal is lost in static.)
PRICE: I think we've lost contact again sir.
ROBSON: Fix it man.
(ROBSON moves away from the Communications cone and heads towards HARRIS who has just returned from locking the strangers in the cabin.)
Price is getting too old for his job.
HARRIS: Mr. Robson, I think we should turn off the gas flow coming from the rig. Make a check.
ROBSON: You think what Mr Harris?
HARRIS: That Doctor chap. The stranger. He said he heard a movement coming from inside the pipe line on the beach.
ROBSON: Oh did he now. Did he say what he thought it was? Mice?
(The CHIEF ENGINEER walks up to the pair.)
CHIEF: She's down at propeller 3. Pressure's on just 157.
ROBSON: Are you sure?
CHIEF: Yes. Sure.
HARRIS: That means the gas flow pressure is down 3% every......
ROBSON: Twenty minutes.
HARRIS: Doesn't that prove that something must be blocking the pipe line?
ROBSON: It proves nothing of the sort. It's probably a faulty gauge that's all. Check it.
HARRIS: Look at least give it the benefit of the doubt.
ROBSON: When you want to find out about pipe lines and rigs Mr Harris, the thing to do is to go out and see and work on them.
HARRIS: Look I'm merely saying that if something had got into the tube.....
ROBSON: You let me worry about that.
HARRIS: But Mr Robson, please listen. This ties up with what I've been trying to tell you. For three weeks now, there s been a regular and increasing build up of falls in pressure.....Look I think you should at least look at my calculations. The time ratio of the increases and falls corresponds to form a definite progressive pattern. I'll get them.
ROBSON: What are you trying to prove Harris? That I don't know my job?
HARRIS: No. Just that I know mine. It's your decision whether you take notice of my work but I must put it on record that I have offered the information.
(Whilst the two are arguing a hand in a white glove picks a file off a desk.)
ROBSON: Don't threaten me boy. I've eaten up sods like you for breakfast. You think you can baffle me with your little bits of paper don't you? Alright you go ahead and get them. I'll show you where you ve gone wrong.
(HARRIS moves off to his desk as ROBSON turns his attention to the CHIEF ENGINEER.)
Did you make a thorough check?
CHIEF: Yes I checked it. Seems to be working properly.
(HARRIS returns from a fruitless search for the file in question.)
HARRIS: It's gone.
CHIEF: Doesn't seem to be anything wrong with her.
HARRIS: It's gone. The file's gone.
ROBSON: Well well well. Has it now?
HARRIS: I'm sure I put it in here this morning......er I must have left the file on my desk at home. I'll go home and get....
ROBSON: You won't. You'll stay here. I'm not doing your job as well as my own.
HARRIS: What's the matter sir? Are you scared that I might prove you wrong?
ROBSON: No. You go ahead. But you'd better have something more than a high blown theory because if you haven't I'm going to take up and chop you up into little pieces and throw you back to your crummy little university. Alright?
(JAMIE is perched on the DOCTOR's shoulders trying to prize open the grill above the door.)
JAMIE: I've got it.
DOCTOR: Put that down Victoria. Can you see anyone?
JAMIE: All clear.
DOCTOR: You think you can make it?
JAMIE: Of course I can make it. Hold on.
(VICTORIA is rummaging in her hair for a hair pin.)
VICTORIA: Don't bother, Jamie. You can do it with this.
JAMIE: Pick a lock with that hair pin? Don't be daft.
(JAMIE manages to pull free the grill which clatters on the ground outside.)
(HARRIS catches up to his wife on her way to the control area.)
HARRIS: Maggie. Where have you been? I've been trying to contact you.
MAGGIE: I was on my way to the village but Robson's clamped down on security. I was just coming to find you for a pass.
HARRIS: Yes. There's been a bit of a flap on.
MAGGIE: Well can I have a pass?
HARRIS: No. Not at the moment. Look. Could you do something for me?
MAGGIE: Yes what is it?
HARRIS: There's a file - it's probably in the middle draw of my desk in the study. Could you get it and bring it to me at the control room?
MAGGIE: Alright darling. But what's the panic?
HARRIS: I'll explain later. Go along.
MAGGIE: Alright darling.
(MAGGIE moves off back to the residential block whilst HARRIS makes his way back to the control room.)
(JAMIE is still perched on the DOCTOR's shoulders trying to squeeze through the open grill above the door. VICTORIA is using her hair pin on the lock.)
VICTORIA: Oh he's stuck.
DOCTOR: No he's not. Are you ready Jamie. Right.
(JAMIE falls through on the other side of the door, just as VICTORIA succeeds in picking the lock and steps into the corridor. JAMIE picks himself up and dusts himself off.)
VICTORIA: Told you not to bother.
DOCTOR: Sorry, about that Jamie.
(MAGGIE finds her husband's file on his desk. She picks it up.)
(MAGGIE picks it out and hastily throws the piece of sea weed out. She rubs her stung hand and moves out to the lounge area. The sea weed bubbles and seethes as foam begins to develop around it.)
(VAN LUTYENS - the Dutch Engineer - enters the control room and makes his way towards ROBSON.)
VAN LUTYENS: Mr. Robson. Could I speak with you please?
ROBSON: van Lutyens. I thought you were at the Control Rig.
VAN LUTYENS: I just got back on the supply boat.
ROBSON: Something wrong?
VAN LUTYENS: I'm not quite sure. The men out there seem very restless.
ROBSON: Restless? What are you talking about?
VAN LUTYENS: You lost contact with Rig D didn't you?
ROBSON: Yes it was only a temporary fault. We regained contact within the hour.
VAN LUTYENS: Then why didn't you tell us that? Unusual incidents like that only cause tension on the rigs.
ROBSON: Don't tell me what happened out on the rigs. I spent 4 years on one of those things without a break.
VAN LUTYENS: Then you should know better than anyone how important it is to keep up the morale of the crew.
ROBSON: What do you want me to do? Wipe their noses for them? Mind your own business van Lutyens.
VAN LUTYENS: Mr Robson. I think you're forgetting we also have an interest in Euro Sea Gas.
VAN LUTYENS: I'm here for the Dutch Government not for myself.
ROBSON: You're here to offer me your expert advice not spread alarm amongst my crews.
VAN LUTYENS: How dare you say that to me?
ROBSON: I didn't ask you to come here. It was Megan Jones and those fools on the board. I said it wouldn't work and it never has.
VAN LUTYENS: Only because you're too proud to accept advice.
ROBSON: Let's get one thing straight, my friend, when I need your advice I'll ask for it.
(VAN LUTYENS mutters his reply in Dutch and storms out. The DOCTOR, JAMIE and VICTORIA enter the control room but remain in a small side room overlooking the control area. ROBSON moves over to the communications cone where PRICE is at work contacting CHIEF BAXTER at the Control Rig.)
BAXTER: Control. Chief Baxter at Control Rig. Is Robson there?
PRICE: Yes sir. Mr. Robson sir. Chief Baxter from Control Rig sir.
ROBSON: Right. Yes Baxter, what is it?
BAXTER: van Lutyens arrive there yet sir?
ROBSON: Yes. Why?
BAXTER: Did he tell you how the men feel sir?
ROBSON: Now listen Baxter. I'm in charge of this outfit. Not van Lutyens. You take orders from me not him.
BAXTER: Yes sir. But there's something else.
ROBSON: What else?
BAXTER: Something seems to have got inside the pipe lines.
ROBSON: Inside the pipe lines?
BAXTER: We've all heard it sir.
ROBSON: Heard what?
BAXTER: This sound. At first I thought it was something to do with the pumps but it isn't. Most peculiar sound. A sort of regular thumping, pulsating..... like a heart beat.
(In the side room, the DOCTOR overhears the description...)
DOCTOR: That's the noise I heard on the beach.
VICTORIA: What is it Doctor?
DOCTOR: I don't know but we're going to find out. Come on, Jamie. Oh...ah Victoria. No. Not you.
VICTORIA: Why not?
DOCTOR: I think it'd be better if you... er... stayed back in the bunk room... hmmm?... please.
(The DOCTOR and JAMIE move off down the corridor to investigate the pipe line. VICTORIA watches them move out of sight and moves off in the opposite direction having no intention of returning to the cabin and being left out of the action.)
(MAGGIE, all of a sudden feeling a bit queasy, moves over to the communications unit and calls up the control room. PRICE's face appears on the monitor.)
MAGGIE: Mrs Harris here. Married Block 420. Could I speak to my husband please?
ROBSON: Have you recallibrated it?
VAN LUTYENS: I've just done Phase two.
ROBSON: Start on Phase three.
HARRIS: Mr Robson.
ROBSON: Yes Harris. Where are your figures?
HARRIS: Oh I haven't got them, sir. I sent my wife for them, but she's not well. I wondered if I could go and...
ROBSON: I would not. Tell her to call a doctor not pester you.
HARRIS: But Dr. Patterson is still out at Rig D sir.
ROBSON: Tell her to get one in from the outside.
HARRIS: But you've still go the compound on full emergency alert. Remember?
ROBSON: Alright. But make it quick.
(VICTORIA moves along the corridor. On hearing approaching footsteps, she ducks into the Oxygen Store room. HARRIS rushes past on his way to his wife. A hissing sound fills the air and VICTORIA starts gagging and coughing. She moves over to examine the oxygen cylinders and finding the open one begins to close it. She senses someone else is in the room with her and turns around just in time to glimpse a tall thin man going out the door. In the corridor the man locks the door and with gloved hands adjusts the environmental controls next to the door to Emergency Ventilation.)
(The DOCTOR and JAMIE come across the machinery that is responsible for pumping the gas out to sea.)
JAMIE: What's that thing supposed to do?
DOCTOR: It's an impeller Jamie. It pumps gas from the main pipe line out to sea. Come on Jamie.
(The DOCTOR leads JAMIE into the Pipeline Room. JAMIE notices the massive pipes running across the room. A section is transparent.)
JAMIE: This is the pipeline, then.
DOCTOR: Yes. Yes. They all are. It's a continuation of the pipe we found on the beach.
JAMIE: Aye? But we can see inside the pipe.
DOCTOR: Yes. It's transparent for checking condensation and... er... anything else that might get inside.
(VICTORIA tries the door handle to find it locked. She starts banging on the door.)
VICTORIA: Hello? Is anybody there? Oh come on.....
(She gives up on the door. Behind her, the vents on the far wall have all been fully opened and foam begins to seep through it into the room. She turns around.)
(The DOCTOR and JAMIE look into the transparent pipe. Suddenly the familiar thumping pulsating sound emanates from it.)
DOCTOR: There it is again Jamie. Can you hear it?
JAMIE: Aye. What is it?
DOCTOR: Your guess is as good as mine. There's something inside.
(VICTORIA's voice echoes down the pipe.)
VICTORIA: (oov) DOCTOR!
DOCTOR: Victoria! Come on.
(The DOCTOR and JAMIE rush from the pipe line room.)
(VICTORIA begins backing away as foam and weed pores through the ventilation grille.)
VICTORIA: Jamie..... Jamie..... help!
(The DOCTOR and JAMIE race along a corridor heading towards VICTORIA's voice.)
DOCTOR: Victoria. Where are you?
VICTORIA: (oov) Doctor..... Jamie.....
DOCTOR: Victoria. We're coming.
(VICTORIA watches terrified as the weed and foam surge towards her across the floor.)
VICTORIA: Doctor..... Jamie..... hurry. (She gives one last scream.)
Title Music by
and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop
TREVOR LEE (TLee@earthling.net)
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