Issue 3: Action, That's How! (A Caper in Time Part 2)

by Evan Forman and Michael Robertson - One Chapter a Week Starting 27.11.16


Table of Contents
Chapter 1 - King Zaedar is Introduced, He Learns of Our Hero’s Exploits in Issue #2, and A Mysterious Force Awakens™ From The Depths of The Ancient Past
Chapter 2 - John Boss - Incredibly - Escapes from "The White Palace of Death”, Shoots A BUNCH of Dudes, and Makes His Way to The Relative Safety of Dryadora’s Coal District
Chapter 3 - Dhubagèl Escorts Aerin Through The Sewers of Dryadora, But Maybe Also His Subconscious? What I Mean is We Get to Know More About This Previously Mysterious and At Points Unsettling Character, and The Subterranean Setting is Associated - in Jungian Psychoanalysis - With The Subconscious, So That Works
Chapter 4 - That Relatively Sedate Chapter Was Just a Break from The All-Important Action! As John Boss and Chel Make Their Way Through The Coal District In Their Attempt to Find Safe Refuge, But Not Without The Police Giving Chase
Chapter 5 - John Boss, Aerin Liette, Dhubagèl Shaen, Chel Hagar, and More are Finally United, and Ready to Strike Back Against King Zaedar’s Brutal Regime
Chapter 6 - The Past 30 Years of Aerin's Life Are Unlived for the Sake of the Plot, by Which I Mean Primarily the Plot of This Book, but Also the Plot Which the Red Hand Formulate in This Chapter, Which - If That Wasn't Obvious to You, Reader - Is a Clever Bit of Wordplay on the Similarities between The "Diegetic" Rebellion's Plot Which Requires Sacrifice, in a Very Fatalistic, Heroic Sort of Way, and The "Non-Diegetic" Aristotelian Plot Structure Which Requires Sacrifice in a Very Ritualistic “High-Maintenance Volcano God” Sort of Way
Chapter 7 - In a ‘Baroque Formalism’ Power Move, Four Conversations between John Boss the 34th and the Three Members of the Dryadora Red Hand Cell Are Intercut with a Scene of Domestic Mundanity, and a Scene of Great Heroism Which Is Also a Flashback into the past of John Boss the 41st. For the Purposes of Light Genre Parody, a Minor Character Has a Silly Name; A Minor Character Waits for a Bus, Which Doesn't Actually Move the Plot Forward or Contribute to The Themeing in Any Meaningful Way, And a Minor Character Mentions Things from Wurld’s past but Doesn’t Explain Them, Which Gives You That Kind of High-Fantasy Texture without the Bogged-Downedness That Comes with Fields of Exposition: All the Flavour of Fantasy with None of the Nutrition, and I Think That's Beautiful
Chapter 8 - The Night before the Operation, Aerin — Overcome by Insomnia — Hides Away in His Study and Distracts Himself from His Fear of Tomorrow's Events with the Comforting Familiarity of His Self-Loathing. Kreida Tries to Comfort Him and the Two End up Comparing Notes on a Relationship Forged under the Crucible Pressures of Mental Illness. It's Actually Really Nice.
Chapter 9 - There's a Flashback to an Episode from Chel Hagar's past with Revealing Parallels to Another Episode from Chel Hagar's Past: Chapter 7 of Issue #2. You Might Assume This Is Our Only Reason for Jumping Back a Few Years in Time, but Only If You Pay Attention Will You Notice That We're Subtly Reminding You of and Expanding on the Sub-Sub-Plot of Dryadora and / or the Whole Elvin Empire's failing Electricity System, Because That's Going to Be Important Later. We Then Seamlessly Transition into the Red Hand Cell's Infiltration of the DTV Station Where the Tapes of What Actually Happened in the Arena Are Kept. Being the End of Act II / Beginning of Act III, Things Go a Bit Skiwhiff and the Chapter Ends on a Thrilling Cliffhanger That You'll Have to Wait 'Til next Sunday to See Resolved!
Chapter 10 - Aerin and Krieda Spend Most of the Day in Dryadora's Pearl District, a Nice Day out Which Is Actually a Ruse by Aerin to Get near the Arena Where the Prime Minister Is Making His Speech. Krieda Is Conveniently Scheduled to Visit Her Parents in the Afternoon, so This Gives Aerin the Perfect Opportunity for a Heartbreaking Goodbye Scene before He Goes to Infiltrate the Press Crowd and Place Lockswell's Signal Jammer on the DTV Van's Satellite. Aerin and Dhubagèl Engage in Some Breathtakingly Suspenseful Scenes of Social Deception, but Are They Wily Enough to Avoid Detection by the Already On-Edge Members of the Prime Minister's Elite Guard? Also, How Good Was Doctor Who Last Night?
Chapter 11 - The Red Hand Defend the Control Room as Their Broadcast Goes out to the World. They Flee, and after a High-Octane Chase Scene They Escape into the Forests. All Hope Seems Lost, but Then They Are Saved by a Mysterious Character from an Earlier Point in the Story in a Way That Is Surprising but, Crucially, Still Made Inevitable by the Aristotelian Clockwork We've Established up until This Point. I Liked This Week's Doctor Who a Lot More Than Frank Cottrell-Boyce's Last Episode. It's Good That We're Getting More Fully-Realised Alien Planets In The Show Again
Chapter 12 - The Twelfth One

58 HOURS, 56 MINUTES, AND 8 SECONDS

"And a three..."

He took a little hammer and positioned it against the blunt end of the spike.

"Two..."

He gently raised and lowered it, lining up the angle before raising it properly.

"One."

The heavy metal door squealed open behind the surgeon.

His eyes rolled as he let out a sigh through the rubber mask. "Excuse me?! I'm about to lobotomise a man!" He snapped as he slammed his hammer down on the tray and turned to face the intruder.

"Me too."

Gunshot. The slapslapslap of fleshy debris against white tiles. The intruder leaned over John, and he saw his vacant face reflected in their black visor as they carefully removed the spike from his eye socket. They tossed it away over their shoulder and lifted the plastic glass mask. "Hi," said Chel Hagar.

John mewled impotently, and she took off her left glove and a knife snapped out of her mechanical thumb. She prised the lid off of a small box on John's collar, buried her blade into the machinery and tore out the circuitry with one motion. "Better?"

"And the shred of humanity reveals itself! Impeccable timing.”

"That's offensive."

"What?"

"Why do I have to be 'human' to be good?" She unbuckled his restraints.

"You pointy-eared pricks literally make humans fight for sport!"

"I literally just shot someone’s fucking head off!"

John Boss sat up straight on the operating table and looked down. Spots and spurts of red lay across the checkered floor, around a puddle of blood growing from the surgeon’s bottom jaw. Which was, heroically, still holding on to the rest of him. “That’s the nicest thing anyone’s ever killed for me.” He tore off his collar and fixed his eyepatch back over his empty right socket. "So, where are we doing?”

"There's a river right below the east side of the building. We can get around the hospital if we climb out the wind...oh." Chel's train of thought wrecked as she looked at the four brick walls surrounding her.

"Why would there be a window? This is an operating theatre."

“This is an impulse escape plan.” She looked around quickly. “Well we’ve not much else to work with except…” She lingered on a ventilation shaft hanging from the roof.

"No," declared Boss.

"Why not?"

"It’s so cliché."

“So you are lying.”

“Hm?”

“How would a peasant from 200 years ago know about modern action movie tropes?”

John Boss paused for a frankly uncomfortable amount of time. He looked on at the tiled wall ahead of him, lost in its perpendicular lines. There was a crack, right there in the grid, and he saw - whether real or imagined - a liquid blackness seep down its crooked path and start to leak from this breach, this violation. There was no reflection on the liquid’s surface for there was no liquid, only void pouring down the black lines and erasing the white in between. As the cold inky blackness overcame the floor and rose up to his ankles, he became acutely aware of his meatiness, of a skeleton itching against muscle. Pearls of sweat pushed out of his skin and burst like sores down his forehead, and his heart began to race, and he saw word-pictures of these things: In his mind’s eye, he saw his mind’s eye, and the fear in Chel’s. Her mind’s eye or her actual eyes? She was sobbing, nonetheless. She tried to hold the dark fluid in her hand, and it fell in treacly strings below her fingers. “I’m sorry,” she whispered, a hand painting a letter on her forehead with the thick and ethereal substance. Waist-deep in a matte black sea with no horizon, arms outstretched. “Please!”














~~~~~




#




*&




§


}{


~~~~~














"Why would there be a window? This is an operating theatre."

“This is an impulse escape plan.” She looked around quickly. “Well we’ve not much else to work with except…” She lingered on a ventilation shaft hanging from the roof.

"No," declared Boss.

"Why not?"

"It’s so cliché."

"Well what do you suggest!? Half the fucking hospital will have heard that gunshot, the place is crawling with police, and any second now-"

"Wrong again."

Chel sputtered. "What!?"

"This room is soundproofed. The surgeon said so."

She paused. "Really?"

"Of course. It must stop anyone outside hearing the screams."

"Oh. Right." She breathed in and straightened herself up slightly. "Gives us time to think of something properly." She put her cold metal thumb to her lips. "Umm, right. Oh! Put that collar back on, and I'll strap you back in the table."

"Chel, that's the exact opposite of an escape plan."

"No, think about it! If you just lie there and put on your best...lobotomy...face, I can just push you through the hall, down the lift, and we're out of here. Fuck, I might even be able to just shove you in the back of a van and drive us to safety."

John thought about it, combing the scenario for potential dangers, then nodded approvingly. “Sounds fun. Just one problem: where in this world is 'safe' for a human fugitive?"

"It's in the city. Coal district. Should be about...a 20 minute drive? This time of night?"

Boss picked up the inactive collar and lay back down on the table. Chel put her glove back on, and pulled her visor down. "Give me two seconds, I'm going to take a look outside and make sure we’re clear to move out.”

She opened the door.

A dozen police officers had filled the corridor in a two-row firing squad formation and were pointing an array of automatic weapons at her.

She closed the door.

"This room isn't soundproofed."

John groaned and whinged as he hauled himself back up off the table. "I just got comfy!"

"John. There is a firing squad of my friends and colleagues outside that door with machine guns that will tear our bodies to ribbons in a heartbeat. They have almost certainly called in an army of reinforcements, who will have this building completely surrounded in less than ten minutes. There are two of us. I have a pistol with two magazines. You have a loincloth and an eyepatch. There is one exit. So tell me, what is it about this situation that you find so fucking funny!?"

He sighed sympathetically. "Chel, understand: this is a respectable Saturday night for me. A solid...seven out of ten, maybe. I herald from the time of myth, an age of magical wars and necromancers on the hunt for dragon fossils; demi-gods skulking in the gutters, aristocracies built on demonic bargains and living mountains that fight all who would try to climb them-"

"Surrender now, or we will enter the room and use lethal force!" shouted a voice from behind the door. "You have ten seconds to comply."

Chel lifted up her black visor, her eyes had gone wide and were darting around the room. "But do you have any idea of how to get us both out of here alive?!"

John's roguish smile faded. "I do, actually."

"What is it?"

"Surrender."

The police officers kept their guns trained on the door, waiting for a breath of movement.

"Okay!" said a voice from inside the room. "Fine...I'm coming out. I'm unarmed. Don't shoot me."

The door handle slowly turned, and creaked open by a few centimetres. One of the officers ordered, "Unload your weapon and slide it over on the floor."

There was a click, and an empty pistol was placed on the floor before a boot from behind the metal door kicked it over to the firing squad. "And now the magazine." Chel repeated the process, scared to breathe. "Okay. Now, open the door slowly and come out with your hands up."

Chel nervously grasped the handle, and slowly drew the door open. She then tore it back, and bullets bounced around the narrow corridor as the police officers fired at the thing charging towards them: John Boss, using an operating table as a battering ram.

They tried to turn but got bowled over and crushed as John and the criminal impersonating a police officer - unrecognisable behind their visor - leapt over the mess of kicking limbs, swiped guns off the floor and charged down the corridor.

"LEFT!" shouted Chel.

John ducked around the corner as one officer started shooting from below the heavy table. "BUT I CAME FROM THE RIGHT! THERE'S AN ELEVATOR!"

"I KNOW WHERE I'M GOING, FOLLOW ME!" She kicked open a door to one of the wards, giving a clear line of sight to two officers running towards her. People fled under beds and doctors ducked behind patients. Bullets flew down the room and buried themselves into the wood protecting Chel.

Careful to avoid stepping into view, Boss slammed the ward door shut. "My plan wins."

Chel sprinted down the hall, ducking below the door's small circular windows and wildly throwing covering fire into the narrow corridor to the operating theatre.

She hadn't even looked up before John was shoving her to the side of the next room, an empty ward. "Sides of the room! Hide behind the curtains!" He was leaping from bed to bed, grabbing curtains and drawing them half-shut as he flew through the air. Chel did as best she could to run backwards through the leather veils while pointing her gun at the entrance.

"Over here!" They piled into an elevator in the corner of the room.

In the distance someone cried, "Come on! They're through-" The elevator slid shut. Echoing gunfire was replaced by the same easy listening tune from when John was wheeled in. Chel hit the button for the second floor and leaned against the side of the little metal box to catch her breath. She pulled the magazine out of the rifle, trying to gauge how many bullets were left.

John inspected his eye in the mirror. "So what changed your mind? Why come to save a brutish monster like me?"

"Three bullets. Excellent." She slammed the magazine back in. John looked at her in the mirror, her face once again hidden behind the visor. She held the gun close to her armoured body, and watched the light on the buttons descending.

Satisfied that his eyeball was still safely fitted in its appropriate socket, he stood opposite her. "Right then, where do we go from here?"

"The ground floor will be swamped already. They'll be sending guys to the top floor where all the action is. We have about two minutes to throw them off before they get their shit together again."

Her radio crackled. "The fugitive's in an elevator on the west side of the building, heading down to the second floor."

"Oooh, 'The Fugitive'," cooed Boss.

Chel sighed nervously and hammered a button to open the door. "You killed 10-million silver behemoth on primetime and now you're rampaging in a hospital. Congratulations Boss, you're Public Enemy Number One".

John Boss gasped in surprise and delight, holding the gun to his chest and gurning. "Oh, wow this is...okay, first of all I would like to thank the Dryadoran government for giving me this amazing honour, but none of this would have been possible without my friends, my family, but most of all my fan-”

The doors opened and Chel grabbed John by the wrist. "Move!"

She looked both ways before they scuttled out into the corridor, peering around every corner. The only noise to be heard was Chel's boots thudding against the linoleum floor. "We have a better chance at losing them on the east side of the building, by the river. Check the ward through that window, I'll see if there's anyone coming down the corridor."

John tried to be inconspicuous as he peered through the small, circular window of the door into the ward, where the lights were off and everything was silent.

Chel rushed back over to Boss. "Right, we need to get through here as quickly as possib-"

John raised an arm in her path before she could shove the door open.

She turns to him and he felt her glare through the dark mirror of the visor. "What!?"

"This is the children's ward."

"So?"

He shouted under his breath. "You can't have a gunfight in a children's ward!"

"Which is why we need to get through right now!"

"Your boots are loud, you'll wake them up."

"Do you have a fucking knightly code about kids?"

"We're supposed to be stealthy."

"Right, so what do we do?"

"There is something.”

“What?”

“Something I learned during my time in the military, in my younger days. A highly covert stealth maneuver.”

“Uh-huh?”

“Something I learned during my time in the circus, in my younger days. A highly entertaining showbiz maneuver.”

“What is it!?”

The announcer in the ringmaster outfit bellowed to the cheering and whistling crowd in the smoky theatre. "And finally, a big hand for our stars...JOHN BOSS AND CHEL HAGAR!"

The orchestra belted out a jovial da-da dadadada DA-DA dadadada DA-DA dadadada daDAdaDAdaDAdaDA as John and Chel Hagar side-skipped, arms locked smiles gleaming, onto the big stage to uproarious applause. Boss in a top hat and tails, Chel in an elaborately sequined showgirl outfit with red feathers. Which would have been a surprise to children in the dark ward if a single one had been awake.

Out in the hall, Chel slipped her boots back on. "Where the hell did you learn to do that?"

John leaned back on a wall next to a stairwell door. "It's a long story involving the Collisterran crown jewels, one kilo of Chiller, and a very maternal singing tiger with nothing to lose."

"Right, it says there's a fire exit down here, if we-"

A police officer rushed out into the corridor and stopped dead when he almost bumped into Chel. "Shit, sorry I-" He turned back to the fleshy shape he'd failed to register a second ago. He pointed his rifle at Boss, who remained still. The elf was young, and obviously inexperienced. His hands we shaking as he spoke. "Okay, okay, just... You're surrounded, right? You're never going to get out of this, so why don't you...just..."

Chel cocked her rifle, and coughed to get his attention.

He whipped around and had his gun pointed at her now. "Who are you? Take the mask off, now!"

She didn't move.

"I'm not telling you twice, this isn't a fucking game now take off the helmet!"

Chel might have had something to say here, but she was silent. She recognised this elf from somewhere. The canteen? The resemblance faded when his eyes bulged, and his skin started to turn red as John Boss wrapped his collar around the elf's neck and tore him to the ground.

The elf writhed and uselessly hammered the trigger on his gun pointed at Chel. He scrambled for the safety lock on the side but John dragged him around and kicked at his free hand. Boss turned to Chel. "Well?! Shoot him!"

Chel kept her gun trained on the elf's head. She silently held the trigger on her rifle, waiting for something. The elf, so clumsily as to be almost accidental, clicked off the safety and fired off a stream of bullets that caught Chel's right shoulder. Her fingers clenched in agony.

Killing people, Chel discovered, wasn't what it looked like in the films. They squirmed. They cried. They choked on their own blood.

Chel stepped back. "Oh, fuck. Fuckfuckfu-"

"What?"

"Call for help, or-" She pulled the radio off his chest, and held a button to send a message. She held it to her mouth for a few tense seconds, then threw it on the floor. "He's dead. He's-"

"Chel, he shot you."

"HE'S A KID!" She thrashed with her metal arm. "He's...FUCK!" She kicked a dent halfway through a small steel bin. She fell to the floor, dropping her gun in agony.

John took the collar off the corpse. "And you're alive. Sometimes you have to-"

"Oh, fuck off!" She ripped the helmet off and threw it at him. From behind mad strands of platinum hair she burned holes into him with her eyes, red and huge and pregnant with furious tears. "I could just shoot you, you know. I could shoot you right now and they'd call me a hero. I could make up some story to explain the mess, all the security cameras have seen is a visor. I could shoot you, and my life would just be so. Much. Easier."

John picked up the rifle from the young officer's stiff grip, and some magazines from his belt. He reloaded the gun, only slightly hindered by the new technology, and tossed another magazine to the floor at Chel's side. "But you won't."

"Why not?"

"Because that bullet tore through your shoulder muscles, so good luck pulling a trigger."

Chel's radio crackled. "Gunshots heard from the fourth floor, east wing. We're on our way to investigate."

There was a gentle barrage of footsteps in the distance. Chel grabbed her helmet with her remaining arm. "They're coming. We need to get out of here."

"Where to?"

"I don't fucking know. How much of the van plan can be salvaged with one arm?"

"We’ve three hands between us." John took Chel's gloved metal hand and hauled her up to her feet. "And anyway, I could learn to drive," he smiled as he picked up Chel's gun and swiftly reloaded it.

Not far down the hall and behind a door a voice shouted "There!"

"Run!" shouted Chel.

They sprinted down the corridor as fast as they could, Chel nursing a bleeding shoulder wound and John trying not to wave his two guns around too much. "That's another thing..." she grunted a little for each step on the stairwell they were descending. "...how the hell does a peasant from 200 years ago know how to use an assault rifle better than a trained officer?"

The radio buzzed. "Backup's on its way up from the second floor."

John smiled. "You've certainly added a lot more edges to the chassis and the springs have a bit more razzmatazz, yes, but the basic principles are the same as the old prototypes."

“Protoypes?”

They burst out the door and into some hastily evacuated offices adorned with party decorations. At the same time, five more elves with guns arrived on the other side of the room. John and Chel ducked behind a desk. One of the elves pointed at the still-swinging door. “Are you-" Chel stopped mid-whisper to process what she was about to say. "Are you telling me that you invented guns?"

John repressed a booming laugh.

A police officer stopped in his tracks. "What was that?"

John Boss jumped onto the desk and opened fire.

"Move!" The officers ducked behind cubicle walls as bullets tore through the office, bursting water coolers and popping balloons.

Chel ran over past the door they'd come in and quickly looked around. "There's only those two exits!"

Boss moved back while firing off short, unpredictable bursts over the room. "Is there a window?"

Chel looked back. "Why?"

"East side of the building? By the river?"

If it weren't for the fact that Chel Hagar was the second most wanted person in the entire Dryadoran empire and was currently being shot at by her former friends and colleagues, it's right about here her eyes would have widened in horror. "Oh for fuck's sake."

"That's a 'yes' then."

Boss pointed his free gun to the office's one floor-to-ceiling window and messily shot through it until it was a web of cracks and holes. It clicked empty, and he dropped it to the ground, grabbing Chel's hand as they ran towards the limp glass. "NONONONOICHANGEDMYMINDABOUTTHE-"

SMASH! John Boss cackled as the two of them plummeted from the window of St. Kainsach's hospital, and towards the black waters of Dryadora city’s river network.

The police officers stood at the ledge and fired off all their bullets into the unlit river below, in the vague direction of the fading sound of a splash.

Table of Contents
Chapter 1 - King Zaedar is Introduced, He Learns of Our Hero’s Exploits in Issue #2, and A Mysterious Force Awakens™ From The Depths of The Ancient Past
Chapter 2 - John Boss - Incredibly - Escapes from "The White Palace of Death”, Shoots A BUNCH of Dudes, and Makes His Way to The Relative Safety of Dryadora’s Coal District
Chapter 3 - Dhubagèl Escorts Aerin Through The Sewers of Dryadora, But Maybe Also His Subconscious? What I Mean is We Get to Know More About This Previously Mysterious and At Points Unsettling Character, and The Subterranean Setting is Associated - in Jungian Psychoanalysis - With The Subconscious, So That Works
Chapter 4 - That Relatively Sedate Chapter Was Just a Break from The All-Important Action! As John Boss and Chel Make Their Way Through The Coal District In Their Attempt to Find Safe Refuge, But Not Without The Police Giving Chase
Chapter 5 - John Boss, Aerin Liette, Dhubagèl Shaen, Chel Hagar, and More are Finally United, and Ready to Strike Back Against King Zaedar’s Brutal Regime
Chapter 6 - The Past 30 Years of Aerin's Life Are Unlived for the Sake of the Plot, by Which I Mean Primarily the Plot of This Book, but Also the Plot Which the Red Hand Formulate in This Chapter, Which - If That Wasn't Obvious to You, Reader - Is a Clever Bit of Wordplay on the Similarities between The "Diegetic" Rebellion's Plot Which Requires Sacrifice, in a Very Fatalistic, Heroic Sort of Way, and The "Non-Diegetic" Aristotelian Plot Structure Which Requires Sacrifice in a Very Ritualistic “High-Maintenance Volcano God” Sort of Way
Chapter 7 - In a ‘Baroque Formalism’ Power Move, Four Conversations between John Boss the 34th and the Three Members of the Dryadora Red Hand Cell Are Intercut with a Scene of Domestic Mundanity, and a Scene of Great Heroism Which Is Also a Flashback into the past of John Boss the 41st. For the Purposes of Light Genre Parody, a Minor Character Has a Silly Name; A Minor Character Waits for a Bus, Which Doesn't Actually Move the Plot Forward or Contribute to The Themeing in Any Meaningful Way, And a Minor Character Mentions Things from Wurld’s past but Doesn’t Explain Them, Which Gives You That Kind of High-Fantasy Texture without the Bogged-Downedness That Comes with Fields of Exposition: All the Flavour of Fantasy with None of the Nutrition, and I Think That's Beautiful
Chapter 8 - The Night before the Operation, Aerin — Overcome by Insomnia — Hides Away in His Study and Distracts Himself from His Fear of Tomorrow's Events with the Comforting Familiarity of His Self-Loathing. Kreida Tries to Comfort Him and the Two End up Comparing Notes on a Relationship Forged under the Crucible Pressures of Mental Illness. It's Actually Really Nice.
Chapter 9 - There's a Flashback to an Episode from Chel Hagar's past with Revealing Parallels to Another Episode from Chel Hagar's Past: Chapter 7 of Issue #2. You Might Assume This Is Our Only Reason for Jumping Back a Few Years in Time, but Only If You Pay Attention Will You Notice That We're Subtly Reminding You of and Expanding on the Sub-Sub-Plot of Dryadora and / or the Whole Elvin Empire's failing Electricity System, Because That's Going to Be Important Later. We Then Seamlessly Transition into the Red Hand Cell's Infiltration of the DTV Station Where the Tapes of What Actually Happened in the Arena Are Kept. Being the End of Act II / Beginning of Act III, Things Go a Bit Skiwhiff and the Chapter Ends on a Thrilling Cliffhanger That You'll Have to Wait 'Til next Sunday to See Resolved!
Chapter 10 - Aerin and Krieda Spend Most of the Day in Dryadora's Pearl District, a Nice Day out Which Is Actually a Ruse by Aerin to Get near the Arena Where the Prime Minister Is Making His Speech. Krieda Is Conveniently Scheduled to Visit Her Parents in the Afternoon, so This Gives Aerin the Perfect Opportunity for a Heartbreaking Goodbye Scene before He Goes to Infiltrate the Press Crowd and Place Lockswell's Signal Jammer on the DTV Van's Satellite. Aerin and Dhubagèl Engage in Some Breathtakingly Suspenseful Scenes of Social Deception, but Are They Wily Enough to Avoid Detection by the Already On-Edge Members of the Prime Minister's Elite Guard? Also, How Good Was Doctor Who Last Night?
Chapter 11 - The Red Hand Defend the Control Room as Their Broadcast Goes out to the World. They Flee, and after a High-Octane Chase Scene They Escape into the Forests. All Hope Seems Lost, but Then They Are Saved by a Mysterious Character from an Earlier Point in the Story in a Way That Is Surprising but, Crucially, Still Made Inevitable by the Aristotelian Clockwork We've Established up until This Point. I Liked This Week's Doctor Who a Lot More Than Frank Cottrell-Boyce's Last Episode. It's Good That We're Getting More Fully-Realised Alien Planets In The Show Again
Chapter 12 - The Twelfth One