Killing Ground was the twenty-third novel in the Virgin Missing Adventures series. Continuing on from the final events of author Steve Lyons' Time of Your Life, it showed what happened when the Sixth Doctor gave Grant Markham his "one trip" in the TARDIS — a journey back to Markham's home of Agora.
Unlike Time, however, Ground featured Markham as a prominent narrative element, and the book jacket formally dubbed him a "companion". Still, it proved to be his final outing in a licensed work, despite the fact that it ended in a way that promised more adventures for Markham and the Doctor.
- "Imagine that you can live forever and life is totally free from pain. You can see all things with clarity, unblinkered by irrelevant details. You will never fear, never sicken, never lose control. That is what the Cybermen are offering."
The Cybermen have taken control and set up a breeding colony to propagate their own race. While the Doctor languishes in a cell at the mercy of the sadistic Overseers, Grant joins up with a group of rebels and works on a desperate rescue bid.
With time running out, the rebels move into action. But will their solution prove more deadly than the problem itself?
to be added
- Sixth Doctor
- Grant Markham
- Jean Markham
- Ted Henneker
- ArcHivist Hegelia
- ArcHivist Graduand Jolarr
- Arthur Lakesmith
- Ben Taggart
- Maxine Carter
Biologically modified species
- Hegelia is an expert on the history of the Cybermen. She is one of the most respected ArcHivists from the ArcHive.
- Hegelia undergoes cyber-conversion to record a first-hand experience of the process.
- The Cybermen that have conquered Agora are CyberNomads, a Cyber-subspecies that fought in the Vogan War. The Sixth Doctor recalls encountering them on Nerva Beacon as the Fourth Doctor.
- According to Graduand Jolarr, the CyberNomad attack on Nerva Beacon occurred three-hundred years after the end of the Vogan War.
- Hegelia proposed a hypothesis that a group of CyberNomads travelled to Telos and re-opened the Cyber-tombs. They subsequently merged with the CyberTelosians inside to become the CyberNeomorphs, which proliferated throughout the 26th century.
- The CyberNomads have been severely weakened by the Vogan War, in numerous ways:
- They use more organic material than any variants of Cybermen before them since the CyberMondans, which has also led to the CyberNomads regaining the CyberMondans' weakness to strong levels of radiation.
- The cyber-conversion technology used by the CyberNomads is significantly more primitive.
- The CyberNomad reinforcements that travel to Agora following the first force's destruction arrive in a Selachian battle cruiser, rather than a Cyber-ship.
- The Doctor contemplates suicide.
- The Doctor spends weeks in his TARDIS recovering from the radiation poisoning he sustained onboard the Selachian battle cruiser.
- Grant has severe robophobia, as a result of witnessing the Cybermen murder his mother when he was a chid.
- Arthur Lakesmith was the original rebel leader and was mutilated as a warning to other colonists following a failed rebellion in 2176.
- This is the second and final appearance of companion Grant Markham in the Missing Adventures. He would later appear in one more short story, Repercussions....
- The cover, by Alister Pearson, contained the only official image of Grant. Pearson chose himself to base the appearance of Grant on.
- The character Hegelia was from David Banks' book Cybermen.
- This story is set between The Trial of a Time Lord and Time and the Rani.
- The Doctor exiled himself to Torrok (TV: The Ultimate Foe) and was forced to leave when the Time Lords revealed him to the Watchers. (PROSE: Time of Your Life)
- The Cybermen are CyberNomads. (TV: Revenge of the Cybermen)
- The Doctor refers to the painful beginnings of his third regeneration in the TARDIS. (TV: Planet of the Spiders)
- When discussing the subjects of government cover-ups with Grant, the Doctor mentions the Great Intelligence, (TV: The Web of Fear) the Autons, (TV: Spearhead from Space, TV: Terror of the Autons) the Axons (TV: The Claws of Axos) and the Zygons. (TV: Terror of the Zygons)
- Earth is still rebuilding after the 22nd century Dalek invasion. (TV: The Dalek Invasion of Earth)
- Grant had a recurring nightmare about being hunted by robots, which was cured. (PROSE: Time of Your Life)
- The TARDIS has an emergency exit. (PROSE: Original Sin)
- The Doctor recalls his visit to Thoros-Beta in 2379. (TV: Mindwarp)