The Buccaneer Chronicles:

Dreaming on the Spires of Immortality

By Andy Simpkins (despite interference by Keith Dunn, Karen Dunn, Adam J Purcell and Tony Gallichan)

Chapter Nine

“This place is so quiet, sensing that storm...”

"Wha...Wha..What the Devil is happening and who the blazes are you and where did you appear from?!" was all a confounded Macfadyan could say.

Stepping out from the shadows cast by the newly installed machinery until she was fully in the light, Macfadyan and the newcomer stood there and appraised each other ....

What the startled Time Lord saw was a tall and statuesque woman, her dark skinned face framed by thick curly shoulder length hair. She was tall, almost six foot and her body was firm and strong, concealing strap-like yet feminine muscles. She was wearing a black short sleeved shirt under a tan coloured leather jacket and close fitting beige trousers were tucked into knee-high boots. A suspicious bulge under the hem of her jacket signified that she was carrying some sort of side arm. She was prepared for action as she stood there, taking mild amusement in the look of astonishment on The Buccaneers face.

What the newcomer saw was a tall yet stockily built man of indeterminate age but looked to be in his late thirties or early forties.

"He's a Time Lord so you can never be too sure of their age, despite their physical appearance..." she mused silently to herself.

His long thick blonde hair was pulled back from his face and tied in a loose pony tail and a light beard and moustache framed his jaw. His eyes were a light blue in colour and when she looked into them, they conveyed a sense of too many bad things seen and done and a sense of infinite sadness as well. He was clad in a white, though stained, frilled and laced shirt with a violet-coloured velvet waistcoat over the top of it. A wide leather and elaborately tooled bandolier crossed over from one shoulder to his waist. In it were sewn leather pouches which held his sonic screwdriver and a host of other electronic devices. Flared trousers, held up by a thick leather belt with a gaudily inscribed buckle in the shape of a heavily decorated infinity symbol, were tucked into black leather bucket-style boots.

"All in all, the guy either looks like a poor man's Cap'n Jack Sparrow or a refugee from a New Romantics reunion. Number Thirteen told me that his dress sense was idiosyncratic but he has a mind that is sharper than a razor...."

Casually tossing the sonic screwdriver in Macfadyan's direction, she said:

"I was told I would find you here, Mac...We need to move and get back to your quarters so we can discuss what to do next without our wrinkly friends in the council getting wind of me being here."

Macfadyan could only look at the sonic screwdriver he held in his hand, looking for all the world like it was about to go off, with a dumbfounded look on his face. Looking up at the stranger, all he could utter was:

"Just who are you and how did you know where to find me?" querulously enquired Macfadyan

Raising a finger to her lips, the stranger said:

"I will tell you as much as I am......permitted.... to tell you when we get back to your quarters. We need to make haste as there is a lot I need to impart to you all."

Shouting up through the open panel that lead to the main council chambers, Macfadyan merely said:

"Colin, I'm all finished here. Could you give me a hand up!"

Curtis casually sauntered over to the access panel set in the floor and, crouching down, said:

"You took your bloody time setting up those power couplings down there, Mac. I was beginning to die of boredom up here."

Reaching down in order to pull up Macfadyan, he felt a strong pair of hands grip his forearms, he heaved and pulled. His face then conveyed a strong sense of bewilderment at what he had just deposited on the floor beside him.

Raising herself to her feet, she dusted herself down and straightened herself up and without further ado, grabbed hold of Colin and, holding his face in her hands, planted a very firm kiss on his right cheek.

"Colin!It's great to see you again after so long!How is your wife Jenny and your lovely baby daughter!?You must tell me all about them and what you have all been up to."

Temporarily at a loss as to what to do next, Curtis could only return the hug and set the stranger down.

"She knows who I am but the last time I saw Jenny was back on Earth, it seems like so many months ago and we were just engaged. As for a daughter?? Who is she and how does she know so much about things that may come to pass?" thought Curtis

Hearing the commotion, Blanche and Cre'at had come over from where they had been working to see what was going on.

Upon seeing Blanche, the newcomer strode over and gave Blanche a sisterly hug. Gingerly returning the hug, Blanche stepped back and eyed the stranger warily.

"Blanche, I hope you are well and remain so for the near future. Please realise that I am here to help you all, despite my rather sudden appearance..." she said, with just a hint of sadness and foreboding in her voice

Cre'at, hovering near the stranger, said after a few moments of analysing and processing:

+I am detecting a strong residue of tachyon particles about your person. Am I correct in saying that you have been subject to a recent temporal displacement?+

"You are correct in saying so, Cre'at. You could say that I am from your near future. How goes the Scientific Function on Sotus these days?"

+You are knowledgeable with what I did on Sotus so many years ago?If I were Human, I would say that I was impressed. The Scientific Function is operating within its parameters, the last time I heard. You are to be commended for your knowledge of what we do+

Looking about her, she said:

"We cannot linger here for much longer. This place is only under partial surveillance but the council will wonder why activity has ceased. I would strongly suggest that we all return to your quarters where I will answer as many questions as I can."

Looking at each other and at the newcomer in their midst, they could only nod in mute agreement as they made their way back to their quarters.

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Chapter Ten