Publisher's summary Edit
Has Owen really discovered a bridge between the living and the dead?
At 1 o'clock in the morning, Owen is called by his old friend Amira Hussein to help save the life of Lucy Sheppard at Queen Victoria Hospital. Upon arriving, he diagnoses Lucy with acute hyperkalemia and is concerned at how Amira seems to have forgotten her medical knowledge. She also forgets to tell him that Lucy hallucinates and has conversations with her dead sister, Ella.
Owen notices that nobody else in the ward has reacted to them or the noise that Lucy has been making and criticises Amira for acting like. After seeing the ghost of Ella, he checks on the other patients, finding that they are all in comas, and confronts Amira, realising that it is not really her. She confesses that the real Amira died in a cycling accident and that she is a Spore, having taken on the form of Amira as her mother remembered her.
To save Lucy, Owen gives her more dextroamphetamine and tells her that it is a Spore using the form of her sister, then realising that the Spores also used the memories of Lucy's and Amira's mothers and that Amira was now taking his. He forgets how to walk and collapses, waking up in a hospital bed and getting into a wheelchair to inspect the patients. Whilst everyone in Lucy's ward is in a coma, the other patients and staff members are dead, having been used by the Spores.
After working out that the Spores use delta waves, Owen offers to provide them with Torchwood technology that could artificially produce delta waves and tells Amira to dig out his mind-reading device. He uses it on Lucy, ostensibly to give Ella form but actually to cut off her supply of delta waves, stopping Ella and killing Lucy, before doing the same to kill Amira. He calls Tosh to arrange for a clean-up.
- Amira Hussein used to work with Owen Harper and his fiancée, Katie Russell. She works in psychiatrics.
- Owen met Katie when he was 21 years old.
- It's been 18 months since Owen and Amira spoke at Katie's funeral, and as long since Owen left his job and joined Torchwood.
- Amira died a year ago, roughly six months after Owen left to work for Torchwood.
- Ella died after falling from a balcony at a party.
- Ella's boyfriend Leon was a "total waster", according to Lucy.
- Owen calls Ella a ghost.
- Owen and Amira laugh about how much hair gel Owen wore before he met Katie.
- The other patients in the hospital include Mrs Harrison, Julie Winters, Sarah Hopkins, Maggie Edwards and Emmanuel Uwarey.
- Amira had a bucket list, which included using her secondary school French to visit Morocco.
- Lucy's mother had cancer and was in remission.
- Fatima Hussein was taken to the hospital with vasospastic angina.
- Owen mentions 28 Days Later.
Food and beverages Edit
- Owen diagnoses Lucy with hyperkalemia.
- Owen and Amira take Lucy's blood after applying a tourniquet and then decide to do a lumbar puncture.
- Owen gives Lucy dextroamphetamine, a stimulant.
- Amira says that Lucy is compos mentis.
- There are, on average, 400 people in comas in the UK at any given time.
- Queen Victoria Hospital is being closed down and its resources moved to St Helen's.
- Amira asks Owen which company he went to work and suggests MI6 and GCHQ, to which Owen answers neither.
- Amira Hussein is an alien spore, which uses the memories of two hosts to form its own body. Amira uses Fatima Hussein, the mother of real Amira, and Owen Harper.
- Alien Amira has been using the hospital to harvest the memories of human hosts and breed more spore creatures. Amira refers to these 'ghosts' as her 'sisters'.
- Ella's two hosts were Lucy and Lucy's mother.
- Amira compares the formation of a body to the formation of an iceberg. Just as an iceberg forms around a speck of dust, the spore uses the harvested memories to build a body.
- Harvesting the memories and delta waves of a host drains the host of their natural bodily functions, such as talking, reading and walking. The "ghosts" guilt-trip the hosts into producing delta waves, a side effect of grief, which they then use to solidify their bodies, killing the hosts.
- Owen uses a mind-reading device, normally used to assess unconscious patients, to erase Ella's delta waves, thus killing both Ella and Lucy. He then uses it to kill the alien Amira.
- Owen phones Tosh to arrange a clean up at the hospital, stating there are 21 corpses and 19 coma patients caused by the alien.
to be added
- Following the death of Owen's fiancée, Katie Russell, which left him devastated, he left work. Owen's co-workers disagreed on whether this loss proved to be too much, or he was recruited by a top-secret research team. In fact, this was when Owen was recruited to Torchwood Three. (TV: Fragments)
- Amira wonders if Owen works for MI5, (PROSE: The Dying Days, System Shock) MI6 (COMIC: The Fallen, TV: Spyfall) or GCHQ. (TV: Resolution)
- Owen states that "people don't come back from the dead". Owen will later go on to be resurrected following a fatal gunshot wound. (TV: Reset, Dead Man Walking)
- The real Amira was present at Katie's funeral. Jack Harkness, his future boss, was also present. (TV: Fragments)
- Owen told Amira that he could never save enough patients. (TV: Fragments)