The Curse of the Silver Pharaoh

Something ancient and evil is awakening under the sands of Egypt

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15. Chapter 14

"Doctor! What do I do?"

"Get...out of...here. Run, Donna. Just...run." The Doctor managed to gasp out.

Both he and the Cyber-priest lay prone on the ground. The Doctor's fingers clawing the sand for a purchase, the Cyber-priest physically dragging him backwards, towards the wrecked tunnel. Sweat dripped down like rain from the Doctor's forehead. He felt himself convulse again.

The voltage emitting from the Cyber-priest's hand, made his raw nerves feel as if they were jabbed with a red-hot poker. The Doctor heard a scream. He immediately thought of Donna. A split second later, was the realization that it came from him.

"You must be converted. Convert. Or be deleted. All power to Re." It told the Doctor, in its unemotional mechanical voice.

Donna ignored the Doctor's advice. Frantically, she cast about for something, anything, which she could use to distract the Cyber-priest. She spotted a hunk of oval-shaped red rock lying near the wall. Hefting it with the strength found only in the desperate, Donna flung it at the Cyber-priest.

It ducked the blow, but not before the rock glanced off the side of its head. The stone dislodged one of the handle-like projections on the Cyber-priest's metal head. Suddenly, a spectacular shower of sparks came shooting from one side, like a Bonfire Night sparkler.

The effect was that the Cyber-priest immediately let go of the Doctor's foot. Clutching its forehead, It gave what amounted to a scream of its own, and rolled away. Donna quickly ran to the Doctor's side, kneeling down beside him.

"Oh my God. Doctor, can you hear me?" Donna shouted, grabbing his hand and rubbing it. It felt cold, icy to the touch. She was thoroughly frightened now. Donna crouched over him, shaking his shoulder. He was passed out cold. Or possibly dead. She couldn't tell, but decided to think of him as alive, and go with that thought.

"Come on, spaceman. Wake up!"

The Doctor gave a low moan and muttered, "Pass me the tanning oil, Cleo." He gave no sign of waking up, though.

"I'm so sorry, Doctor. Really I am. But, I'm afraid this is gonna' hurt you more than me." She muttered apologetically. Just before she slapped him in the face. Hard. Twice.

"Ow! What'd ya' do that for?" He exclaimed, sitting upright, and rubbing his jaw.

Then, he wobbled a bit, and lay back down with a groan. Donna tried to help him up, but she found that a half-conscious Doctor was a dead weight.

"For a skinny bloke, you weigh an awful lot. Since you're not dead, you're gonna' have to do some of the work yourself, alien boy. I'm Donna Noble from Chiswick. Not...Zena, Warrior Princess." She told him caustically.

She wasn't really angry with him, of course. It was mostly that Donna was upset by her own fright. She was still a bit scared, to be truthful. The Cyber-priest was unmoving, but recent experienced proved to her that it didn't mean it would stay down.

"Yeah. No worries about wardrobe malfunctions, traveling with you. Zena did love her skimpy outfits. She almost got us arrested in Victorian London. Or was that Leela? I hope I'm not experiencing early senility." He said, slowly sitting up. He looked at her and gave her a fond smile "Thank you, Donna."

Then he glanced at the stone she'd hit the Cyber-priest with. "Nice throw, by the way. The head of Queen Zenobia, if I'm not mistaken. She's a long way from home. Came from Syria. Personally conquered half of the east before she died. I always said she was a-head of her time." He joked, giving Donna a lop-sided grin.

Donna looked at the red stone. He was right. It was a carved head of a fierce looking woman. She looked back at him, her brow creased in concern. "You alright now, Doctor?"

"Yeah. I'm fine. No worries, Donna." He lifted up his feet. The bottoms of his trainers were still smoldering slightly. "Rubber soles grounded the worst of the charge. Can't beat 'em! Unless I'm around horses. Then it's work boots, for me. I learned that, that time The Pie stepped on my foot after winning the Grand National. Blimey! It's not a lot of laughs, getting stomped on by a nine-hundred pound horse when you're wearing trainers. Let me tell you—."

"Oh, will you please shut up! Earth girl to Doctor! Hello! Cyber-priest. Right behind us. Starting to move." An exasperated Donna said to him.

The Cyber-priest had regained its feet now. It was walking towards them with it's arm outstretched, electrified fingers at the ready.

"Eh?" The Doctor said, turning to look, as if he'd really forgotten. "Oh. Riiight."

Weary as he was, the Doctor stood quickly, all set to make a run for the TARDIS. Until he spied something sitting behind the open door in the wall. It was an old-fashioned explosive charge plunger. And it had wires running from it. Seeing it, he grinned from ear to ear. Donna wondered what he was looking at. When she realized his intentions, she frowned.

"No way! You're not actually thinking of..." She shook her head.

"Yup." He nodded. "I'm sure Pharaoh always wanted to go out with a bang."

"That's what I was afraid of. Only, instead of him, it'll be us."

"Oh ye of little faith, Donna."

It's not faith I'm worried about, Doctor. It's you and me. Not getting blown to bits." She sighed. "You sure you know what you're doing?"

"Erm—not really. I think life's more fun that way." He looked at her. "Ready, Donna?"

"Not as such, no."

"Brillant! Neither am I."

"What the hell, Doctor. It's a nice day. Let's go blow something up." She smiled, giving him a resigned shrug.

"Right you are, Donna. Allons'y!" Grinning at her delightedly, the Doctor once more palmed his trusty screwdriver.

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