TDWP SEASON 39 launches Saturday October 26th so we thought we’d share this short excerpt from the season premiere story, REVERENCE OF THE DALEKS…
The air was thick and warm and steam rose from the leaves of the giant Engar’la trees.
Sunlight streamed through gaps in the dense foliage and all around could be heard the cries of mighty beasts, locked into the perpetual struggle between life and death.
A’Nerali moved slowly through the jungle, his sensations heightened, his breathing and heart beat slowing. He had been hunting his prey for two days now and he knew that soon the hunt would be over.
One way or another, there would be death this day.
A’Nerali had come of age this year and, as was the law of the Venirex, he was required to hunt the great Pankara beasts that roamed the jungle. Yesterday he had received his first tribal tattoo on his face, a pattern of four circles that marked him as a protector of the Eldak’e, and as a Venirex warrior and son of the village elder, it was his duty to provide for his people now that he was an adult. He would fulfil that duty or die in the process.
The hunt had been long and difficult; his prey swift and cunning yet now he sensed that it would be over soon. He would take no satisfaction in the Pankara’s death save for the survival of his people.
At last he saw his prey and he slowed his breathing even more. He reached for the sacrificial arrow and, in one smooth action placed it against his bow.
For a brief moment, A’Nerali could smell the Pankara’s fear, could hear its blood coursing through its veins.
He pulled back the string and took aim.
The end would come quickly and painlessly for the beast and prayers and offerings would be given to the gods ensuring the soul of the Pankara reached Far’nat’hara, the plains of everlasting grazing.
Suddenly a strange noise filled the air and a terrible wind scattered dirt and fallen leaves.
Trembling, he let go and the arrow shot forward with a whooshing sound. However, the arrow veered away from the Pankara’s eye and instead hit it on its hind leg causing the beast to scream in agony. Now the creature looked at A’Nerali, its eyes burning with a dull red glow and the hunter froze. He knew what would happen next.
With a roar, the Pankara bolted forward, its crested head pointed down to the ground.
Fear gripped A’Nerali and he turned to run but the creature was too fast, too strong and he felt an intense pain as the Pankara’s nose horn tore through his skin, his muscle, his flesh. For a brief moment he felt his thigh bone shatter and then, mercifully, darkness took him.
Text © 2013 by Kevin Mullen & The Doctor Who Project
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REVERENCE OF THE DALEKS will be available to download for free from The Doctor Who Project website in PDF format as of Saturday October 26.