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Fortitude was the thirty-fifth story in the Torchwood audio series by Big Finish Productions. It was written by James Goss and featured Rowena Cooper as Queen Victoria.

Publisher's summary[]

Queen Victoria is stranded with Maharaja Duleep Singh on a mysterious fort in the middle of the ocean.

The fort has been ravaged by storms since it was built. There are ghosts inside and there's something alien outside. It’ll do anything to get its release.


Queen Victoria has taken Mr Singh sailing into the English Channel when they are caught in a storm. They reach a sea fortress and meet Colonel Crackenthorpe, who sends a telegraph and tells them that a boat will arrive for them in the morning. Mr Singh hears voices and believes that they belong to ghosts, but Colonel Crackenthorpe, who calls them imps, explains that they are simply the creaks of the fort.

Mr Singh wakes up in the night with the Queen standing over him with a knife and both realise that the voices have them acting out of character and wanting to kill the other. Mr Singh and the Queen, who had been sleepwalking, find a room that Colonel Crackenthorpe has made to look like his wife's sitting room. Colonel Crackenthorpe finds them and, irritated, directs them to the Queen's bedroom. Once alone, he says aloud that they are gone and the rocking chair begins rocking. Mr Singh accuses the imps of leading him and the Queen to Colonel Crackenthorpe's room to provoke him.

Colonel Crackenthorpe talks to something underwater, unknowingly overheard by Mr Singh, about how the Queen might be there to set free either it or him. Mr Singh asks him to use the imps to kill the Queen so that both he and Colonel Crackenthorpe could be free of her, but he tells him that he does not control them. The Queen, who overheard, accuses him of disloyalty and tells him of Torchwood and that the fortress exists at a weak point in spacetime.

The imps ask Mr Singh to set them free, but he says that he cannot, not being free himself. He talks to the creature and decides to free it, saying that the Queen has too many slaves, and it begins to destroy the fortress. The Queen apologises to Mr Singh for what she had done to him and Colonel Crackenthorpe sends the creature back to its world, the Queen saying that the fortress needs to be guarded should it come back. Having tried to kill the Queen, she orders Mr Singh to take Colonel Crackenthorpe's place as sentinel of the fortress. She says goodbye, calling him maharaja.



  • The Queen says that there is going to be another Boer War.
  • The Queen's physician is threatening to have her declared insane.
  • The Queen mentions having a mouse problem at Balmoral Castle.
  • The Queen gets Mr Singh hot rum.
  • Mr Singh has a suite at the Vendôme Hotel, paid for by the Queen out of his own pocket.
  • Colonel Crackenthorpe sends a telegraph.
  • The Koh-i-Noor was previously owned by the Khaljis, Mughals, Shahs and Sikhs.
  • Mr Singh used to sit in a rocking chair in his nursery and daydream that he was riding elephants.
  • Mr Singh mentions Hyderabad.
  • Mr Singh asks if Djinn have been sent to drive him mad.
  • Colonel Crackenthorpe gives Mr Singh a Great Exhibition souvenir plate.
  • The fortress was ostensibly built to combat the Emperor of France, whom Colonel Crackenthorpe identified as "Boney".
  • Colonel Crackenthorpe's men were sent off to wars in Abyssinia, Afghanistan, Khartoum and "[Mr Singh's] spot".
  • Colonel Crackenthorpe says that Mr Singh's people grew tea and the British taught them how to drink it.
  • Colonel Crackenthorpe fought in the Crimean War, namely in Inkerman after which he suffered from a gammy leg.
  • The Queen says that they have all been suffering night terrors.
  • Mr Singh wishes that his people had killed the East India Company when they first met them.
  • The Queen says that there will be riots from Bangalore to Kathmandu when she dies.
  • The Queen locked up Mr Singh's mother for thirteen years because she was a bad influence.
  • Colonel Crackenthorpe says that Mr Singh will be supplied with corned beef.



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