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Insurgency (identified on the cover simply as Chapter Eight) was the fourth story of the second series of Big Finish's Gallifrey audio series. It was written by Steve Lyons.

Set almost entirely at the Gallifreyan Academy, Insurgency introduced a group of students affected by, and in opposition to, the anti-alien actions of Valyes and Andred. Andred, having been a conflicted character in this incarnation, finally decides to choose the right path before being killed by Romana, an act which will threaten Romana and Leela's friendship. Darkel declares that she will challenge Romana, setting the stage for the finale.

Publisher's summary[]

"How can we go forward when she continually fans the flames of mistrust and paranoia? I've seen the future she'll create — the corridors of the Capitol, awash with blood!"

They are the brightest minds of their generation; the architects of tomorrow. And now, they have the chance to attend the finest, most exclusive school known to the temporal powers. After millennia of secrecy, the Gallifreyan Academy has opened its doors to off-worlders...

But the experiment is failing. As interracial violence erupts in the corridors of learning, somebody is using the students as pawns in a political power game — and, while Tutor Leela struggles to unravel the motives of her ex-husband, Andred, President Romana may be falling under an ancient spell.

It's a dangerous time to be a stranger on Gallifrey.

It seems that not all Time Lords want to share their secrets...


Acting-Chancellor Valyes addresses the students of the Gallifreyan Academy, including the off-worlders, and promises that he will be ensuring that the Academy continues to move in the direction laid out by Braxiatel. Human student Taylor switches off his screen during the speech, refusing to be taken in by what he says and finding him patronising, a view which Phaidon Galadina and Monan B'arech agree with. Neeloc, a Time Lord, respects Valyes and says that most of his kind are pro-integration. He believes that the group will achieve great things and that, one day, nobody will care about where they each came from.

Leela is now lecturing at the Academy, but confides in Romana that she feels uncomfortable in the job and that she does not like Valyes, who was appointed by the High Council. Romana says that they have to accept Valyes' appointment and that, with Darkel making speeches on Public Register Video denouncing Romana's every action, she might have to prepare herself for a presidential challenge. With Darkel and Valyes being against the integration of off-worlders, and Braxiatel's valuable wisdom now gone, it is important to her that Leela keeps her eyes open at the Academy, particularly with the tension caused by Gillestes' arrest.

Late to a lecture, Leela and K9 Mark I run into Valyes and Andred, who is concerned about terrorists at the Academy following the Gillestes incident. Leela is not happy to see him, comparing him unfavourably to his former incarnation, and heads off with K9 after warning Valyes that he was self-serving and treacherous. Once she has gone, Valyes tells Andred that he is glad that he is no longer romantically involved with her.

Neeloc, Taylor, Galadina and B'arech are missing their lecture with Leela to look for their Monan friend, K'arel, who said that she would meet them in the dormitory. Neeloc, Taylor and Galadina decide to go to the lecture and make an excuse for B'arech's absence as he continues to search for her.

Returning from the archives, Romana and K9 Mark II are approached by Narvin, whom Archivist Duaden informed of her visit due to his concerns about Pandora. Romana and K9 remind him that the past and present forms of Pandora are within Braxiatel's mind and that the future form has no tangible presence but, as a precaution, Romana still is not accessing the Matrix directly; Duaden is making a headset for K9 to communicate with Pandora. Narvin protests, but Romana says that this matter does not involve the Celestial Intervention Agency.

In the lecture, Neeloc, Taylor and Galadina ask Leela about how she fell in love with Andred and the prejudice that she endured as a result. She says that it is natural for the Time Lords to be cautious of outsiders given their enviable technology, but they still need to learn and be taught that outsiders can be trusted.

Afterwards, Neeloc expresses his excitement at having learnt that Leela was present at the Sontaran invasion when B'arech finds them, having seen Valyes and Andred packing up K'arel's possessions for return to the Monan Host World. She is the latest off-worlder to have been exiled for allegedly conspiring with Gillestes, a charge that her friends refuse to believe. Neeloc suggests that they speak to Valyes, but the off-worlders worry that they could be next if they speak out.

Darkel makes a speech on Public Register Video about K'arel's, saying that her expulsion proves that Andred is an effective Castellan and that Time Lord society is too naïve about off-worlders. Romana switches her screen off, frustrated at the harm that Darkel and Andred are doing to the Time Lords' relationship with the Monan Host and afraid that her dreams of the Capitol running with blood might become a reality because of civil war. K9 informs her that the High Monan is contacting her, as she expected.

Valyes lets Andred know that he has his support and they discuss their disapproval of Romana and her policies towards the Academy, Andred informing Valyes that there are like-minded people in high places. Ostensibly to avoid a repeat of the Gillestes incident, they agree that Matrix privileges will need to be withdrawn from all non-Gallifreyan students. Although they will need the authorisation of the High Council, Andred tells Valyes to make the announcement immediately.

Many students are angry with the announcement and Leela tries to assuage them, but admits that she too finds the restriction unfair. She agrees with Neeloc, however, that protesting and making demands of Valyes will only make things worse and that they must choose their battles and put faith in Romana.

Romana, who has instructed K9 Mark II and a pair of guards to shoot her if she appears to be possessed, has K9 access the Matrix so that she can question Pandora. She dismisses the protesting Narvin and finds that K9 has been possessed by Pandora's future aspect.

Narvin visits Darkel and tells her that he believes that Romana is already under Pandora's control, reasoning that that would be the only rational explanation for her reckless behaviour. Whilst Narvin is concerned about the threat to Gallifrey, Darkel sees this as an opportunity to have the High Council call a vote of confidence and tells him to obey Romana until he has an unimpeachable reason not to.

Neeloc asks Galadina why she was speaking with Persephone and hopes that she does not intend to join her Phaidon gang. She says that she refused her offer but fears that Persephone might have been correct in saying that she will soon have to choose between her friends and her people.

Leela saves a Sunari student after he is attacked by a group of Nekkistani students whom she threatens to have K9 Mark I stun. He will not speak to her, however, and she sends him away. Andred, who has been watching her, says that the attack was likely in response to an attack on four Nekkistani whom he has seen in the medical bay; the students are dividing into factions just as Romana was warned. Leela makes her feelings towards Darkel's speeches known and says that she is becoming a liar like Andred, saying one thing to her students and another in their absence.

Romana believes that part of Pandora had entered her mind when she encountered her in the Vaults and has been giving her nightmares, but this aspect cannot answer her as she can only look to the future. Pandora tells her that there will be a civil war between the Time Lords and that Gallifrey will be laid to waste. She claims that Romana will seek her counsel throughout the war, but that neither reason nor force will thwart Darkel and her supporters. The future is Romana's to weave.

Neeloc, Taylor, B'arech and Galadina argue about the situation that the off-worlders face, Taylor having had his data pad trashed and books torn up in a racist attack. B'arech tells Neeloc to prove his loyalties by helping to remove the key to the Time Lords' power, but Taylor says that he is sounding like a Free Time terrorist and leaves. Neeloc too leaves, non-committal about seeing his friends again. Taylor is stopped in the corridors by Andred, who says that he is on the side of Gallifrey and supports Romana's reforms but that she will ultimately fail. He invites Taylor to think on that during his stroll.

K9 Mark I is unable to form a communications link with Romana and instead tries to contact his counterpart, also without success. At his invitation, Leela confides in him, saying that she does not feel that she is being useful at the Academy and that she fears for the future of integration on Gallifrey. K9 suggests that she pulls herself together and Leela asks him to cease his empathy.

Romana is angry with Narvin for allowing a Cardinal to speak with the High Monan whilst she was busy and learns from him that Darkel has got Gillestes to tell her what her plans were. Romana says that this will have to wait and demands that Narvin get her in touch with the High Monan, shouting that she hopes that whatever damage has been done can be repaired.

Whilst Professor Malvin is talking to a group of Sunari students, Taylor, Galadina and B'arech access the Matrix using Neeloc's codes, Taylor having chosen to join his friends after Valyes announced that the different races will have their dormitories segregated. B'arech finds security codes and programs and downloads them to their data pads, setting off an alarm which is answered by Andred. He tells B'arech that Valyes is making a special announcement for the Monans and pretends to be unaware of the students' wrongdoing.

The Monans are removing their young from the Academy, a course of action which Leela blames Valyes for despite him saying that the decision was theirs. He says that he has done nothing that Andred did not approve of and is angry when Leela says that Darkel is using him as a puppet, telling her that he will not hesitate to fire members of staff.

B'arech is preparing to head to the scaphe port to return to the Monan Host World. Taylor and Neeloc are upset to lose another of their friends, Neeloc having had big plans for the group, and wonder where Galadina is. B'arech hopes that they will one day meet again and leaves on his own, Taylor and Neeloc feeling that they would not be welcome amongst all of the departing Monans at the scaphe port.

Leela finds Galadina, Persephone and the Phaidon gang sat on their own, not wanting to share the library with the Nekkistani and Time Lords. Galadina tells Leela that the Time Lords will never fully accept a savage, prompting her to threaten to find out whether or not Galadina can feel the pain of her bondservant should she ever speak to her in that way again.

Darkel tells Romana that Gillestes' toxin, with which she planned to infect the water supply of Gallifrey, is called the Dogma Virus and makes the drinker receptive to a package of the Free Time movement's pre-programmed beliefs. As the virus is undetectable until regeneration, Darkel says that Gillestes might have already infected any number of Time Lords by other means before being caught by Andred. She says that Romana's experiment at the Academy has failed and that all alien students must be expelled, but Romana refuses.

Taylor hurries to the medical bay to see Neeloc, who was beaten up by other Gallifreyans on his way to the refectory because of his choice of friends. Andred says that Valyes will likely be sending all alien students away soon and, aware of B'arech's plans, tells Taylor that one man can change the world before leaving. Neeloc demands to know what Andred just said to Taylor, but he lies. He says that he has something to do.

Romana seeks counsel from Pandora through K9 Mark II once again. Pandora says that Romana will find that there is only one way to restore order.

Leela encounters Andred on her way to see Neeloc, who is temporarily unable to bathe himself as a result of his injuries. This sort of violence, Andred says, will only grow worse. Neeloc is speaking to Valyes and, not wanting his best friend to get into trouble, tells him that Taylor plans to find the Great Key of Rassilon using an ancient parchment with B'arech presented the group with. He believes that Taylor might want to tap into the Eye of Harmony and do something stupid, but Valyes points out that the parchment could not possibly lead to the current location of the Key, which has been moved since the Fourth Doctor used it. Neeloc wonders, then, who gave B'arech the parchment and why.

Romana realises that Pandora wants her to declare herself Imperiatrix. She refuses to be a vessel for Pandora's ambitions and, should she choose to become Imperiatrix, it would be for her own reasons. To do so, however, would be to become what she abhors, so she instead says that she will fight Darkel with reason and that she will win. Having learnt all that she needs to know, she says that she will not speak with Pandora again.

Andred admits that he does not blame Leela for being antagonistic towards him, saying that the man that she married got lost between his regeneration and his masquerade as Torvald. He is trying to find his way back to Leela and asks her what to do as he does not know who to listen to. He will find the right path, he promises, and hopes that she will be able to trust him again, but she reminds him that she has already mourned his loss. He leaves to do what he believes is the right thing.

Taylor uses his data pad to record a message in which he says that great things cannot happen without somebody taking a risk.

Narvin detects an intruder in the Vaults and Darkel recognises him as Taylor. Narvin prepares to contact the Chancellery Guard but Darkel suggests that they wait to intercept him in the act of attempting to breach the chamber beneath the Panopticon so as to catch him red handed. If he were able to access the chamber, without the Sash and the Rod of Rassilon he would be unable to control the power of the Eye of Harmony and would be turned inside out.

Andred searches for Taylor in the Vaults, seeking to stop him, and encounters Romana. She kills him.

Taylor arrives at the chamber door, not sure of what he will find inside, and types an entry code into the panel. He asks Neeloc, B'arech, Galadina and K'arel to wish him luck and enters.

Darkel gives a speech on Taylor's death and uses it as evidence of less-developed races being unready for the technology of the Time Lords. She draws similarities between his actions and Gillestes, suggesting that both had been used and that there could be further incidents in the future because of Romana's refusal to give up on her Academy project despite the promises she made when she invoked the right of challenge against her predecessor. Darkel announces that she will invoke the same right, challenging Romana to an electoral contest.

Neeloc is happy that Leela attended Taylor's funeral but upset with Valyes' speech about him being a misguided youth and that most people were there out of morbid curiosity. Leela assures him, however, that Taylor will get the funeral that he deserves once his body has been returned to Earth and suggests that Neeloc go to Earth to make sure that Taylor's family hear the truth. He wants to go on adventures like the Doctor and find his friends. Leela, who is refusing to worry about Andred's disappearance, confides in Neeloc that she has decided to leave the Academy.

K9 Mark II informs Romana that it is likely that Darkel will win the election, but Romana insists that she cannot. In Andred's absence, Leela is to be put in charge of security at the Academy, giving her the authority to override Valyes on all matters. K9 tells her that Leela plans to resign, but Romana refuses to allow her to do so, no longer being willing to compromise.






  • Romana refuses to be interrupted for anything less than the Third Space War.

Science and technology[]


  • This story was recorded at the Moat Studios.
  • This story was originally released on CD. It is now available as a download only.
  • In Pandora, Romana said that she would allow Darkel to choose Braxiatel's successor. In this story, however, it is said that Valyes was appointed by the High Council.


External links[]

  1. Leeson plays both K9 Mark I and K9 Mark II, as well as Pandora when she possessed the latter K9.