- You may wish to consult
Tooth and Clawfor other, similarly-named pages.
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The year is 1939, and as Europe prepares for war, four visitors arrive on an unnamed island in the South Pacific to sit out the violence in luxury as guests of the eccentric Varney. Actress Sabine Snitching, the mad Canon Pincock, and the Templar knight Marwood - the ancestor of the man the Doctor and Izzy met in Stockbridge - each provide their host with a unique gift, but Fey Truscott-Sade, art-detective and leader of the underground Salon Aesthetic, gives him the strangest gift of all - a whistle which summons the TARDIS. The Doctor soon realises that something odd is going on, for he’s met Fey before, and knows her to be an undercover British secret agent.
After dinner and champagne, which Izzy foregoes, Varney tells his guests the story of his ancestor, a mad pirate who made a deal with the Devil and fed on the blood of his enemies. A chalice in the dark chapel is filled with the evil captain’s blood, which has not clotted in centuries; it is said that whomsoever drinks of it will be possessed by the fiend’s spirit. That night, the pilot of the plane that brought Varney’s guests to the island is attacked and killed, and Izzy finds his body next to the empty chalice. Sabine and Marwood attempt to flee the island, but Varney has his monkey butlers blow up the seaplane; he will allow nobody to leave until the killer is caught. The building’s generator fails, and as the Doctor and Sabine set off to fix the problem, Varney locks himself in his room, and Fey follows the fleeing Pincock. Marwood, certain that Izzy is the killer, tries to shoot her...
The Doctor and Sabine find cave drawings telling of a demon that rose from the volcano and taught the monkeys to eat people. They are then attacked by a vampire monkey armed with a syringe, but Fey arrives and drives it off. She takes the Doctor and Sabine into the volcano’s extinct caldera, where they find a secret laboratory constructed by Varney and the late pilot, Lycett. British intelligence has been aware for some time that Varney has been developing biological weapons for the Nazis, and Fey was sent in undercover to find out what has happened to the hundreds of other people Lycett had secretly transported to the island. The Doctor finds vials full of blood taken from Varney’s former “guests”, and theorises that Lycett was killed because Varney’s plan is now near completion. He also discovers, too late, that their champagne was spiked with a chemical agent - and Sabine is already beginning to change...
Marwood and Izzy find that Pincock has been killed by a monkey, and Marwood, realising that Izzy is not to blame after all, kills it. But then Marwood begins to transform into a vampire himself, and Varney sets his monkeys on Marwood, draining out all of the blood from his body. The Doctor and Fey arrive, but they too have fallen victim to the infection, and Sabine has died after stumbling into one of the biological weapons that Varney has developed. Varney takes them back to the caldera, where he reveals that a curcubite lives in the lake; it is a living alien spaceship which feeds on blood, but as the blood of the human race is unsuitable for its needs, it has been trapped on Earth for centuries. Ever since the mad pirate Varney stumbled across the curcubite, he and his descendents have been helping it, and now they have developed a serum which can transform human blood into the fuel that the ship requires. Varney has been selling biological weapons to both the Nazis and the Americans on the side, and once the curcubite is free, he will rule the world. Varney takes his place as the ship’s pilot and prepares to drain the Doctor, Fey and Izzy dry -- but as the ship feeds on the Doctor, the Doctor injects himself with one of Varney’s bioweapons. The toxin spreads through the Doctor’s blood and into the curcubite’s engines, causing it to explode. The death of the curcubite cures the Doctor and Fey of their infection, but Varney’s toxin is still killing the Doctor, and Fey and Izzy must take him back to the TARDIS and pilot it to Gallifrey to seek help.
- Eighth Doctor
- Izzy Sinclair
- Fey Truscott-Sade
- Sabine Snitching
- Canon Aelfric Pincock
- Captain Lycett
• No comic strip, or new fiction, in#261, just the Telesnap Archive.
to be added