Rain of Terror was a novel in the Doctor Who 2 in 1 books range.
In Rain of Terror, terrible tiny creatures swarm down from the sky, intent on destroying everything on planet Xirrinda. As the colonists try to fight the alien infestation, the Doctor searches for the ancient secret weapon of the native Ulla people. Is it enough to save the day?
Gellen is having a birthday surprise from her father and his girlfriend. The take her on a Galactic Safari trip to Xirrinda. From her hotel, she watches as native animals of the planet run around in the distance. Suddenly, as she watches from her veranda, small, brown pebbles land nearby. It cracks open and a small creature with a number of spindly legs comes out of its shell and reveals its sharp teeth to her.
Gellen's father comes to her help and pulls her away from the tiny creatures. As he pulls her from the room, he can hear the screams of others as they realise creatures are entering their rooms. Reaching the car park, her father puts Gellen in the car, but it's too late for him as more of the creatures rain down upon him and drag him away from his daughter. The jeep she is now sitting in hums to life and drives out of the car park with the sound of more creatures rattling on the roof as they land.
There's a sudden noise within the TARDIS, which the crew can't believe. After discovering there's a meteor storm outside, the Doctor pulls out a net, wishing to grab a specimen; after nabbing one, he triumphantly closes the TARDIS doors and examines it with his sonic screwdriver, reporting it's giving off a massive gravitational interference. As the Doctor holds it, the sample suddenly opens, revealing a strange creature that quickly sprouts legs and begins to chase them around the TARDIS until Amy opens the door so the Doctor can kick it out "with a comfortable clunk." The group realises the shower means there are millions of creatures falling around them.
The TARDIS arrives on Xirrinda, inside some sort of airport, and the Doctor is using his sonic to measure the readings. They soon discover that it is a tourist destination, and Rory comments that doesn't look high-tech. While the Doctor goes to talk to someone in charge, Amy and Rory visit a t-shirt's salesman who turns out to be a native.
The Doctor finds the warden of the airport, Casper Van Goole, and without explaining any reason, he asks for the warden to prepare a transport so that they can reach the hotel.
In the terminal, the native turns out to be Attar who is double-jointed (probably biologically common to his species). Attar says that he isn't happy here because it's very dull and there's nothing at all to do. Amy picks a t-shirt for Rory, which is embroidered with a confusing pattern, which Attar claims to be a design of the legends he was taught by his tribe. When Amy goes off to put on her new t-shirt a coach with newcomers, children in fact, arrives.
The Doctor and Van Goole take a red-topped vehicle to the hotel. At first it doesn't start, but with a wave of the sonic screwdriver, it started. Seeing Amy and Rory inside the terminal, he tells them he won't be long. Listening to his orders, they both investigate the transport situation.
Two school children, Matty George and Kevin Arkwright, aren't interested in their new surroundings. Matty is a little more enthusiastic, but the teacher, a frowning, not-well-liked substitute named Mr Cain, explains they're here to research for their exams.
The Doctor and Van Goole arrive at the area, but, seeing the cloud of creatures approaching them, realise they're too late to save anyone.The Doctor finally explains that these are a parasitic race of some sort that are slowly devouring the planet. Van Goole spots something and the Doctor realises it's a survivor from the hotel; as the warden attempts to restart his hovercar, the doctor bounds down, finding a badly-bruised Gellen in the back seat of the jeep. .As something bangs on the car's roof, he hauls her out of the vehicle and races to the warden's hover car. As the pebble-creatures rain down on them again the Doctor struggles to restart the vehicle, finally succeeding and allowing them to speed away. .
Amy notices their arrival as they haul a limp body from the hover car: Gellen. Rory examines her, finding she merely has a mild concussion. Amy then shows the Doctor the train-like machine they found, all ready to go.
Gellen wakes up and explains to Rory and Van Goole about the creatures and how they attacked the hotel. Using his skills, Van Goole pulled up a screen that showed the storm coming towards them. The warden is breathless.
The Doctor is relishing the finding of the train, which turns out to be a monorail and requests that Thornton drives it, because he is an engineer.
Matty and Kevin suddenly hear a whistle in the terminal and the Doctor begins to talk to them about the approaching storm and the monorail that they are equipped with to escape. A man called Professor Willard confronts the Doctor in rage. Seeing that he was getting nowhere with the headmaster, he told him to shut up and listen to what he was saying. After a quick explanation of the specific situation at hand, an evacuation begins.
Amy tells Attar that he must help to evacuate the people inside the terminal because of the creatures that are coming towards them. He leaves in a panic, telling Amy that he must warn his people on the savannah. Amy is worried that there might not be enough space on the train.
When looking at the radar images, the Doctor discovers that the creatures are leaving waste behind them, a metal waste to be exact. Van Goole explain that the monorail was used as a back-up transport to got to Ortagon City, via the caves, which were an attraction. The Doctor proposes that they send a message to the city when they are in range. Amy and Rory burst in and explain what has happened to Attar.
The Doctor is frustrated that Van Goole didn't tell him about the tribe. The warden apologises, but emphasises that there won't be enough space capacity on the monorail for the tribe as well. He tells the Doctor that the tribe is a mile down the road. Before he could leave without them again, Amy demanded that she and Rory accompany him to the settlement.
It barely takes them a minute to reach the tribe's settlement, but when they arrive, they realise it was empty. They guess that they had been aware of the danger and escaped beforehand. They find Attar who explains that the scene is just like in the legend of the Rain of Terror. Attar confesses that he didn't pay much attention to the stories though. Without the Doctor noticing, two dark visitors arrive, which Attar claims to be Sharkwolves. Attar quickly explains to the Doctor that they are pack animals and don't usually come so close to the settlement. The Doctor rapidly deduces that the creatures wouldn't like daylight. The four of them slowly drag themselves across the wall, trying not to make the creatures suspicious. The Doctor then shouts run and they escape into the daylight and back into their vehicle.
When they return to the terminal, everything seems to be in full swing as people busy themselves to try to get everyone onto the monorail. Thornton is keen to have a word with the Doctor and a child is in need of a assistance from Rory.
Thornton seems to be indeed in a slight predicament. The train temperature can get a little too hot and a little too cold, but the computer can't control the boiler pressure. It will evidently need to be done manually.
Matty and Kevin feel a little frightened as they watch the situation unfold before their eyes. Matty seems quite sure that the train will work, but Kevin is not so sure. The Doctor appears again and asks whether someone would like to do a little task. Matty and Kevin volunteer.
Van Goole and Thornton aren't so keen on the idea of having two children controlling the boiler pressure. The Doctor asks the twelve year old boys if they understand the procedure and they nod. The Doctor argues that the human brain should be something that's recognised as being better than a computer. Van Goole gives up at this point.
Amy notices the Doctor's worry and asks about it. He explains that the train will work perfectly, but that the creatures are multiplying faster than anything. The escape will be narrow. If they're not quick enough, all the shuttles in Ortagon City will have been used up. The teacher, Cain, overhears this conversation and tried to create another plan just in case. He meets up with Professor Willard to discuss it. It is obvious, judging by their words, Cain is keen on capturing some of the creatures, believing that they would be valuable. Willard is unsure, but goes ahead with the plan.
The Doctor notices Gellen, sitting alone on a bench and sits next to her. She is also worried that they won't make it, but he reassures that they will be able to escape in time and will get away from them, because the monorail will be faster. Standing up and looking out of the window, he can see a dark grey cloud approaching at a frightening speed. He orders people to get on the train now — they have to leave.
Amy can hear a whispering, getting louder and louder in the distance. She notices that Van Goole's team is setting up a makeshift medical cabin for Rory, so that he can look after Gellen in her traumatic state. The Doctor pulls her onto the train and Thornton and Van Goole follow suit. The Rain of Terror has arrived. The creatures are crossing the concourse towards the filled train. Somebody then realises that Professor Willard and Mr Cain aren't on board. The Doctor is about to get off the train to try to find them when they appear, racing towards the monorail in fright. Windows smash all around them as the creatures burst through with all their weight. The train is picking up speed, but the Doctor finally manages to get them both on board and they are hurried away. The Doctor glares at the Professor and Cain at their foolishness. The Professor complains that he had to get his life's work. Amy helps Willard to his feet and escorts him to see Rory.
Matty and Kevin tell the Doctor that everything is under control. He then proceeds down the train to see Thornton and Van Goole. They watch as the train continues across the planet at a faster speed than the creatures. Thornton explains that the journey to the city will take about fix to six hours at most. Thornton then explains that they will have to stop to recharge the train's fuel cells. Van Goole reluctantly agrees. When heading to see Attar about the legends he was taught, the Doctor meets Cain, who apologises for his appalling actions.
Amy arrives in Rory's coach where he is surprised to see the blood on the Professor's leg. Rory is getting a little overwhelmed by the whole situation — he's had many patients to deal with. Amy comments that he is doing a great job, even though he is only a nurse. The Doctor turns up and asks where Attar might be.
Gellen wakes from a horrible dream, to find that she seems to be having the same experience. She notices Rory who is looking exhausted, but then also, Cain is talking to Professor Willard. Cain is holding a box, which Gellen is sure had whispers coming from it. She decides that she will follow them.
The Doctor finally finds Attar, but the native doesn't seem happy to see him. The Doctor seems absolutely sure that Attar knows about the legends, even though he didn't pay attention. The Doctor tries to engage the perfect environment for Attar so that he can recall the stories. He dims the light and starts a drumming in the carriage, originating from a small girl called Karen who happens to have the song on her i-book. Attar appears to be falling into a trance. The Doctor slowly hypnotises Attar and forces him to remember when he was young. He suddenly knows the story. He begins to tell it.
In a carriage further along, Professor Willard and Cain can hear the drumming, but Cain is keen to ignore it. The Professor does as he was told and opens the specimen case and examines whatever is inside. He pulls out a rubbery material, which he explains is some sort of flexible metal. Cain exclaims that they will be rich, but not if the swarm catches them. Cain then divulges his plan to Willard, who listens intently. They are going to steal a shuttle from the refuelling station. The professor then reseals the specimen box.
Gellen has been watching and recording everything that is said and done. After they leave, she then crosses over to the specimen box. She opens it, and inside there are three pebble creatures.
The doctor ponders over Attar's recital of the story he has been taught. Amy complains that it was too long and very garbled. The Doctor explains that Attar's people's civilisation, years ago, had been very technological. They had created the Rain of Terror as an answer to their economical problems. It was only too late that they realised that they had created a monster. And now they have returned and the campfire stories had prepared them for that exact purpose. But the natives had also devised a way of stopping the creatures and the Doctor believes that this was where they had escaped to, somewhere within the caves.
Gellen is frozen to the spot as she sees the creatures in the specimen box. She then jumps at the sound of the Professor's voice and hides again, but in doing so, doesn't fasten the box properly. The train then begins to halt and Cain orders the Professor to grab the specimen box as they are about to leave the carriage.
Thornton and Van Goole leave the train first and head to grab the spare power cells. The Doctor goes to join them. Amy decides to go too. Before they can leave the carriage, Cain holds out a gun to them, claiming that no one will leave. The Doctor becomes frustrated again and says firmly to Cain that there is no way that the shuttle will leave with the gravitational interference. Amy is shocked to then discover what the specimen box contained. In an effort to stop him, the Doctor lunges for the stun gun that Cain is holding, but is knocked to the ground. The teacher then grabs Amy and the three of them disembark the train. Cain drags Amy towards the free shuttle.
When they arrive, Amy is pushed into a seat in the cockpit. Cain then orders the Professor to pilot the shuttle off the ground.
The Doctor and Rory watch as the shuttle tries and fails to escape from the planet. It lifts steadily in the air, but the interference pulls it down again and Amy is trapped inside. It begins to smoke in mid air. It tries holding in the air, but then descends and ploughs through the ground. Thornton and Van Goole appear, wondering what is going on, and the Doctor explains that Cain has realised that the creatures are unique and will use them to make him rich. They soon realise, behind them, a dark cloud is approaching at an unbelievable speed. The Doctor decides then that they should head for the caves and so everyone is ushered back onboard. He believes that they have a chance to stop the creatures once and for all.
Amy awakes inside the rubble of the shuttle. She unbuckles her harness and tries to get out. She then notices the Professor, who is slumped across the controls in an undignified fashion. Cain suddenly appears, unharmed. Amy pleads that what he is doing is completely wrong. Cain now seems to have his mind set on investigating the caves where they'd landed nearby. Amy helped the Professor exit the shuttle and they walk towards the caves.
The Doctor has arrived in the carriage to find Attar asleep and he now wakes him up. Attar tells the Doctor that his people will probably have travelled to the large cavern within the caves. It is located at the centre of the mountains. Attar's face falls when he realises that the path was shown on the great paintings, which were taken, but then he notices Rory's t-shirt, which is actually a rather original drawing of the path itself. Rory takes the shirt off and gives it to the Doctor.
Unknown to the passengers on the train, there are small pebble creature fast asleep beneath one of the seats.
Amy is getting tired of walking around and realises that they have probably been walking in circles. In the end she trips and falls with the professor. Cain seems certain that the professor knows where the caves lead. After consulting his journal, the professor decides on a route.
Gellen watches the Doctor and Attar disembark from the monorail after it has abruptly stopped. She doesn't feel frightened, though, that stopping means that the creatures are getting closer by the second. She trusts the Doctor in some way, enough to lay her life in his hands. Then she hears scuttling and notices that one of the pebble creatures is rummaging around the carriage in a drugged fashion.
The Doctor is a little too quick for Attar as he tries to decipher the way through the tunnels using Rory's shirt. They find a dead end, but the Doctor explains that it is actually a door, meant to look like a wall. He realises that the key to opening it is one of the native songs. He tells Attar to sing and the song resounds down the tunnels. The wall has now vanished and steps are revealed instead.
Cain looks around the tunnel as he hears the song approach them like an echo. They try to find from which way the sound is coming, but it is practically impossible. Cain pushes them forward impatiently, not wanting to lose the sound.
Gellen is screaming as the creature approaches her hungrily. She manages to pull a pile of cases on top of it, but it doesn't seem to stop it. Rory arrives and is astonished to discover that a creature has appeared on the train somehow. The creature appears once again and scurries towards them. Rory decides he could distract it. He tosses a sandwich to the ground and the creature eats it ravenously. The creature shockingly multiplies into two creatures. Rory looks apologetically at Gellen.
The Doctor and Attar have finally arrived in the large cavern. The tribespeople are gathered around the machine that could destroy the creatures, but they don't seem to be doing anything. The Doctor introduces himself. The Doctor tries to press them on, worried that they are wasting too much time. The people aren't looking very happy because they have found out that the machine does not work.
Rory and Gellen suddenly come across Matty and Kevin who are still in the same spot, believing they have been forgotten about. Matty seems to be forming a plan and smiles.
The Doctor is listening to the tribespeople's song. It is obvious that it isn't working, but there is something else. The Doctor explains that the culture evolves and that the songs could have been changed somehow during their evolution on the planet, something different from a long time ago. He pulls Attar forward and tells him to write anything about the song that doesn't sound genuine.
Matty has decided that the best way to get rid of them is to blow up the train. Rory doesn't have time to disagree because the creatures are now closer than ever. Thornton suddenly arrives and so they are quickly forced to divulge the information to him. Thornton surprisingly agrees.
They have sung the song many times now, it is now up to Attar to teach them the original song they should sing.
Rory tempts the creatures towards the boiler room using Kevin's sweets. He realises that the creatures have multiplied quite a bit in the time they had talked and there are about a dozen scuttling towards him.
Gellen watches Rory before heading down the platform to give Matty and Kevin a thumbs up. They press a few buttons while following the instructions of what Thornton has written on the piece of paper. The engine train has now detached from the rest of the monorail. Van Goole comes over to ask what is going on.
The tribespeople are beginning to sing the proper song. The machine that they had needed starts to spring to life. The Doctor explains that it will immediately halt the creatures in their tracks. But there is a familiar voice from the tunnel behind and Cain appears, holding a gun to Amy's head.
Rory and Thornton are still on the train as it picks up speed. They have to act quickly if they are going to escape. Thornton presseds a button, one of the doors opens and he advises Rory to bend his knees. They are about to jump when a creature scuttles from the shadows and bites Thornton on his leg. Rory finds an axe and swings it and it hits the creature cleanly off Thornton's leg. They finally jump and land heavily on the platform. The train begins to whine noisily before it explodes. There is the sound of cheering behind them
The Doctor tries reasoning with Cain to stop him from doing anything drastic. Cain is sure that he and the professor will get a lot of money from the creatures. But the Doctor pleads that they aren't a species, but a machine. The professor agrees with the Doctor, but Cain isn't giving up. Cain fireds the stun gun, but is hit by Willard, which sends it flying to the roof of the cavern. There is a scuffle on the steps. Willard isn't letting Cain escape as he opens the specimen box and the creatures begin to devour them. The Doctor, panicked, presses the deactivation button.
Rory hears a deafening noise and when he opens his eyes, the creatures have all fallen to the ground, alive no more.
When the Doctor, Amy and the Ulla people emerge from the caves, the rescue shuttlecraft has arrived. The Doctor looks at Matty and Kevin angrily when seeing the remains of the train, but after an explanation he forgives them. The Doctor tells Van Goole about what happened to Cain and the professor. He then tells Attar to tell his people to gather the metal from the Rain of Terror and that it will give them enough money to rebuild their civilisation. Then, the Doctor, Amy and Rory go to retrieve the TARDIS, promised a party.
- Eleventh Doctor
- Amy Pond
- Rory Williams
- Casper Van Goole
- Gellen Jenkins
- Mr Cain
- Professor Willard
- Matty George
- Kevin Arkwright
- The Doctor uses a Jammie Dodger to hypnotise Attar.
- This story was collected in the anthology Alien Adventures.
- This story was originally planned to be released as a full-length novel featuring the Ninth Doctor until it was replaced by The Stealers of Dreams.
- This story was also released as an ebook (together with The Underwater War) available from the Amazon Kindle store.
- This story originally had a cover that continued the style used by previous 2-in-1 titles before it was changed to the Alien Adventures cover.
- This book was later re-released individually, and with a new cover, as part of the Eleventh Doctor Adventures. This edition was released as a ebook on 4 February 2016 and in paperback on 24 March 2016.
- The Fifth Doctor also his expressed his childhood desire to be a train driver. (TV: Black Orchid)
- The Doctor says that a blue crystal would be better for sending someone into a trance. (TV: The Green Death, Planet of the Spiders)
- Official Rain of Terror page at Penguin Books
- The Discontinuity Guide to: Rain of Terror at The Whoniverse