The Secret in Vault 13

The Secret in Vault 13
The Secret in Vault 13

Synopsis

The Doctor has never faced a challenge quite like this…

In the coldest spot in the universe is the Galactic Seed Vault. For generations it has existed to store and preserve examples of plant seeds from across the galaxy, ensuring that in the event of planetary catastrophe, the seeds will survive.

And at its heart lies a secret. Vault 13.

Unopened for millions of years, no one is sure what it contains. There are rumours of a great treasure, and a terrible weapon.

Now The Doctor and her companions are in a race with an ancient order known as the Gardeners of Tellus to unlock the vault. Whoever gains access first will discover the horrifying secret of the Genesis Seed.

Plot

The Fleet was planning an assault on the Avolantis System when the Thirteenth Doctor, Graham O’Brien, Ryan Sinclair and Yasmin Khan visited their planet. Space Lord Draal took possession of the TARDIS and sent a Mark VI combat mechanical to capture the crew. The Doctor reprogrammed this and other Mark VIs to prevent the Fleet from raging further wars and took prisoners held in Draal’s throne room to their home planets.

By request of slightly homesick Graham, Team TARDIS returned to Sheffield to water plants in his and Ryan’s apartment. One of the plants, a begonia that Graham took with him into the TARDIS used the TARDIS telepathic circuits to relay a message for The Doctor that the Gardeners of Tellus IV need her help.

The Doctor and Team TARDIS materialise on Tellus IV, where Willow, the leader of the Gardeners, imparts to The Doctor that the legendary Galactic Seed Vault on Calufrax Major was created by the First Gardener with the help of Time Lords. Willow explains that a renegade faction of the Gardeners led by Nightshade want to destroy the vault and asks for The Doctor’s help. Worse than that, the vault has already been compromised by Nightshade’s predecessors and messages to the keepers of the vault remain unanswered. The reason Willow contacted The Doctor now was that the Rose Garden of Eternity seemed to have predicted her involvement by depicting number 13. As Willow is showing the floral prophecy to Team TARDIS, Nightshade and his Grave Diggers, summoned by the traitor Parsley, suddenly ambush them. Nightshade burns down the Rose Garden of Eternity.

Assisted by the Lily of the Valley, The Doctor and her team escape in the TARDIS and head directly to the Galactic Seed Vault. The Doctor times their arrival to coincide with the return of a seed-collecting drone, which causes the doors to open letting them get inside. However, due to Ryan being delayed to help Graham, after he loses his footing, only The Doctor and Yaz make it inside the vault before the doors close again.

Trying to find a way to let Graham and Ryan into the vault, The Doctor discovers a hidden door of non-human proportions. A beetle-like creature emerges from it and confronts The Doctor and Yaz. It does not speak but can understand them. Upon hearing that The Doctor is a Time Lord, it takes them to the control room of the vault to see the Curatrix, the artificial intelligence running the vault. Passing through seed storage vaults, The Doctor and Yaz learn that they are too late and noughtweed smuggled into the vault by renegade Gardeners has already devastated eight of the twelve seed storage vaults. Trying to guess the renegade Gardners’ plan based on modifications made to noughtweed, The Doctor discovers the existence of the thirteenth vault, to the big surprise of the Curatrix. It turns out that the insect, who confronted The Doctor and Yaz originally, who is called the Attendant, is not a mindless animal but the second guardian of the vault, capable of telepathic communication and the only guardian who knows about the secret vault and its contents. And the prophecied number 13 refers to the thirteenth vault rather than to The Doctor. The Attendant takes The Doctor and Yaz to the secret vault hidden behind a holographic shield wall.

CHAPTER TITLES

Diddly-dum Diddly-dum Woo-woo
Bigger on the Inside
Re-potted
Gardeners’ World
Non Compost Mentis
The Curatrix
Gardeners of the Galaxy
Cuppa Tea?
The Last Guardians
Dorm
Please, Miss, I Feel Sick
The Faculty
Always Keep the Warranty
School’s Out
Exterminate
Fantastic Voyage
Party Animal
Unearthly Child’s Play
By-laws
A Hiccup in Time
Kensington Gore
Run!
We Belong Together
The Crack of Doom
Breaking Bud
An Apple a Day
Plants Within Plants
Sunset
What Would Werelock Do?
Always Remember to Back Up

Notes

CHARACTERS

Thirteenth Doctor
Graham O’Brien
Yasmin Khan
Ryan Sinclair
Willow
Deadly Nightshade
Parsley
Lily of the Valley
Oak
Curatrix
The Attendant
Space Lord Draal
Bernard
Hydran prisoner
Dalse prisoner
Chentan prisoner
Zraryx prisoner

REFERENCES

The Thirteenth Doctor has two hearts.
The Fleet conquered 10,000 star systems.
The Doctor previously defeated Sontarans, Cybermen and the Daleks of Skaro.
Bernard pursues The Doctor, Graham, Ryan and Yaz through the Forest of Desolation, across the Burning Grounds and into the Valley of Agonies. It was sent from the Citadel.
Bugbeasts live on Zeta Draconis.
The Thirteenth Doctor explains that the TARDIS is supposed to blend in with the environment using the chameleon circuit, but it got stuck in a form of a police box circa 1963. (An Unearthly Child)
Graham O’Brien was most keen to leave Earth and travel with The Doctor. (Arachnids in the UK)
Graham would not want to run into Ravenous monsters. Incidentally, Ravenous are especially feared by Time Lords. (Seizure)
The Doctor recalls how she and Sarah Jane Smith had problems with Krynoids. (The Seeds of Doom)
Graham finds a tourist prospect for the Leisure Hive on Argolis, but The Doctor has already been there and had issues with the tachyon generator. (The Leisure Hive)
Yasmin Khan never met Graham until their encounter with Arachnids in the UK (The Woman Who Fell to Earth)
The Doctor recalls her encounters with Yeti robots. (The Abominable Snowmen, The Web of Fear)
Graham, Ryan and Yaz chose to leave Earth with The Doctor a few weeks ago. (Arachnids in the UK)

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