"You will surrender the Grail!" demanded the robot. He pointed his sword at my throat.
The hand above my head wiggled the cup. "Do you mean this cup? This very ordinary mug? This non-grail drinking vessel?" I asked the robot.
"Do it," whispered the Doctor.
"Yes. Surrender the Grail, human!"
I grinned and shrugged. "No problem." I threw the cup behind him and into the group of robots that were approaching. The robot wielding the sword at my throat dropped the weapon, turned on the spot, and made an attempt to catch the "grail." That also meant him jumping into his back up team; which, of course, forced them to the ground. That gave the Doctor and I an opportunity to sprint to the other side of the room and disappear into the ship.
I followed the shadow man through the maze of corridors and dodging metal men. Until we finally came to rest in a hiding spot, in a cargo hold. Being out of breath and dizzy, I needed the stop.
"Doctor, this is not the best scenario for me. I don't think my head can take the stress," I said. "I'm sorry to be such a bother." He didn't give any answer. His shadow-static body shifted in against the crate we sat agianst. "Okay then, what about that 'grail' remark."
"You weren't very observant, Jessica."
"The room with the glass cases, that room was full of cups," said the Doctor. I stress laughed. He hushed me, and I covered my mouth. "It's pretty clear they are looking for a Holy Grail."
Eyes wide, I shook my head in disbelief. "No. Nope. Too much."
"What?" he hissed.
"There is a such thing as too much fairy tale, Beggar man. And this is it. I draw the line at King Arther and the Knights of the Round Table."
His shadow body turned towards me. "So, you are okay with talking bees, Nazis in tin cans, spineless witches, run away spaceports, burning moons, fish people, biting pixes, and a spaceship that moves through time and space. But you draw the line at some Crusaders?"
"Becuase Crusaders are real."
He waved his hands in the air and hissed at me again. "Jessica, all of this is real."
"Is it?" I asked him. "How do I know?" I tapped my helmet. "I could still be in a bed, hallucinating do to some medication or medical treatment." I pointed at my forehead. "How do I know I am not in a coma and dreaming? This could be some weird episode of Twin Peaks or X-files! Or a Red Dwarf space anomaly. This might have some sardonic, yet happy ending." The Doctor reached out and pinched my arm. "Ow!"
"As your Doctor, I have assessed that you are fully awake and not in a comma dreaming. Now, pull yourself together! Times like this, it doesn't matter why or how a thing is. We accept it as reality and move on. Don't think about it."
"Right. Think about it later."
"No, Jess. No," he shook his head. "I have been at this for a long while. Listen to me and hear me. It doesn't matter. Now or later, it doesn't matter. It happens. You survive. The why, hows, what if's, and should have's don't make a lick of difference. If the answers present themselves, then great. But otherwise, it doesn't matter."
"I don't understand, Doctor. To understand motive is to understand the enemy."
"Yes, to know your enemy is to conquer them."
"No, Doctor. To know them is to have compassion for them. They might not be all that bad. If we know why maybe we could help them and send them on their way. If they truly are malevolent, then we can stop them without having to destroy them completely," I said. "The problem with Crusaders is zealotry. And that's why I draw the line. Generally speaking, it has to do with religion. I don't want any part of that."
The shadow man chuckled. "Having been the center of a few of those, I can rightly say that some of that...a lot of it...most of it, is fiction. The truth is never what you think it is."
That made my brain gears begin. "Doctor, did you work out where we are exactly?" I asked. "Becuase, you know, I think I know where we are."
There was a moment of silence from him. "Okay, yes," he nodded. "Don't miss a beat do you?"
"In a ship, above Karn?"I asked, slowly. He chuckled, and I smiled. "You are so bad. I hate you right now."
"No, you don't."
"St. Constantine is not an Earthling, is he?"
"Nope," said the Doctor. "Although, he does have the symbol of the 'Chi Rho'"
"The first two letters of the Greek alphabet. That symbol on earth usually goes with..."
"Constantine came first. And no, this case is a coincidence. Sometimes, that happens."
"Like bread and fast food?"
"Okay, to sum up. Constantine is a Tim..."
"Constantine was a Time-lord. His symbol was the Chi Rho. The metal dudes think he is a saint. The metal dudes are also looking for a Holy Grail. Maybe, they think a Holy Grail is on Karn?"
"That might be the case," said the Doctor. "Maybe we should take my advise and go find out."
I rolled my eyes. "Good idea, Doctor. Let's take your advice and find out."
He chuckled, grabbed my hand, and made a break for it.
previous This is Not Karn
next On the Doctor's Terms
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