Doctor Who RPG: Season 1

Episode 7: The Lincoln Dilemma

April 7th 1865, The Whitehouse, Washington D.C.

Three Union Guards stand in a dimly lit corridor, charged with protecting the most important figurehead of their time – President Abraham Lincoln. Although it’s an important appointment, the guards are complaining that they haven’t had as much of a helping hand in taking down the Confederates as they would have wanted.

Suddenly, the window at the end of the corridor careers open and the lights inside the gas lamps blow out. The men investigate only to hear a scream coming from the Presidents bedroom. In panic, two of the soldiers run to the bedroom , leaving the last to look outside the window into the perfectly undisturbed night air.

Inside the bedroom, the President is terrified, spluttering about a horrible vision he’d had. The soldiers hurriedly explain the situation to him and from back out in the corridor, they hear the cry of the lone guard. Rushing to leave the bedroom, the guards are startled when the door slams shut and a bright light fills the room, silhouetted only by an advancing figure…

Cue Music

The Doctor, Arty and Terrance are working out where to go next, when the TARDIS is once again thrown around in the vortex. This time it’s a result of the backwash of another time travel device. As the Doctor skilfully tracks the wash to it’s source, Arty amazingly pilots the TARDIS and lands without killing everyone!

Uncle Sam
April 9th 1865, Appomatox, Virginia

The group find themselves in an old courthouse. The courtyard and rooms are filled with Union Soldiers and the group soon find themselves being approached by General Ulysses Grant, accompanied by the Confederate General: Robert E Lee. Terrence says that he’s studied this at school – They are about to witness the surrender of the Confederate Army.

The group quickly pop into the TARDIS and change into period costume, passing themselves off as official photographers for the event. The event goes without a hitch, but they are shocked when a Union Soldier bursts in tell General Grant that fifth columnists are inside the camp. But this isn’t any old Union Soldier. This soldier talks like Elvis – It’s Sam Phillips!

When the Doctor calls his name, Sam panics and snatches the surrender document from General Grant and runs away. The group give chase, but find that he activates his time belt and disappears in a cloud of smoke.

The Doctor uses his Sonic Screwdriver to get a trace on the Chronon energy emitted by the belt and they all rush off into the TARDIS to give chase, taking General Grant with them.

The 2.25 to Washington

The TARDIS follows the trail to a speeding locomotive. After explaining that yes, it is bigger on the inside, the Doctor flies the time machine next to the train so Arty, Terrence and General Grant can jump across and track down Sam.

They run through carriages and across the top of passenger cars until eventually, they reach the final passenger cart where Sam is stood. They shout to him and he warns them to stay back, just as the sky grows dark and over-clouded.

Looking out of the window, the group see the terrifying sight of a giant spacecraft sliding across the sky into attack position. It fires a deadly energy beam at the train, causing it to derail and crash.

The Doctor lands the TARDIS and rushes to the train, helping survivors out and calling for his companions, but soon finds that only General Grant is left. Unsure of what’s going on, but convinced they are facing a catastrophe, the General insists the Doctor goes with him to Washington D.C. to talk to the President.

The Truth
April 12th 1865, Virginia

Terrence and Arty awake in the cellar of an old American building, where they see a bunch of watchmen huddled around a computer screen.

Sam Phillips explains that the Watchmen were testing their modified time belts when they discovered the existence of a group of time travelling aliens called the Sklave, an unscrupulous race of shape changing slavers. These aliens were attempting to alter Earth’s history by somehow infiltrating the Union Army and ending the war. The Watchmen, although vowing never to intervene in events, chose to disobey this vow to stop the slavers.

Sam explains that they must set time right again and get the surrender document to Abraham Lincoln before the Sklave can alter time further. They also need to root out the infiltrators whom they believe stretch all the way through the Union Army and into the Whitehouse.

The Great Emancipator
April 15th 1865, the Whitehouse

General Grant takes the Doctor and his “horseless carriage” to the Whitehouse where he meets Abraham Lincoln himself. Lincoln tells the Doctor that he thinks he’s been sent by god to aid him in the Unions darkest hour, believing that if he wanted to kill Lincoln, he’d have done so with a lot less fuss.

April 15th 1865, Ford’s Theatre, Washington D.C.

Lincoln takes the Doctor to the theatre where he’s due to attend the theatre that night. He shows the Doctor three dead bodies which he states were found skulking about the area. He believes they were would-be-assassins. They were carrying time belts.

The President asks the Doctor to help him investigate and root out the assassins before they strike. The Doctor agrees.

He begins by examining the bodies before him and has a hand in setting up the guards for the night.

Musket Vs Laser
April 15th 1865, the Whitehouse, Washington D.C.

The Watchmen with the help of Terrence and Arty use the time belts to travel to the Whitehouse where they land in a toilet! They move around the grounds and successfully sneak into the foyer of the grand building where they find the TARDIS guarded by soldiers. As they attempt to enter it, the doors of the Whitehouse blow open and the lights go out, replaced by a blinding, screeching light that floods in from the entrance. A Sklave Strike team enters the foyer and begin firing at the group as they teleport away, just in time.

The Sklave Agenda
April 15th 1865, Ford’s Theatre, Washington D.C.

Terrence, Arty and Sam make it out of the Whitehouse and after figuring out the significance of the historical period, go to the theatre, believing it to be the most likely place to meet the President.

They see the Doctor at the doors instructing guards, but are too far away to shout him. The guards in turn, begin checking all customers belts, causing the companions to realise they are looking for the Watchmen.

Deciding to throw caution to the wind, the group decide to hide the time belt with Arty’s “delete” function and bluff their way into the theatre, being captured shortly afterwards.

Once captured, the group see the captain of the Union troop announce to the people assembled that they’re about to witness a new future of humanity. He explains with great joy that the Doctor’s been fooled. He was led to believe it was the Watchmen responsible for the assassination, but it was really the Sklave are behind the attempt. With the war ended, the aliens can ensure slavery continues and broaden their great business empire to the colonial United States.

The Doctor smiles and explains that it’s them that have been fooled. He knew from examining the bodies that he was dealing with shape shifters using perception filters, and he’d worked out all he needed to from there. He triumphantly raised his Sonic Screwdriver into the air and explained that he’d worked out the frequencies of the filters, thus short circuiting them out and revealing the Sklave for what they are.

As the reptilian Sklave are uncovered, the remaining Union Soldiers begin fighting them in terror.

The now reptilian form of Abraham Lincoln stands up in the Presidents box and curses the Doctor. Sam Phillips breaks away from his captors and charges up to the Presidents box, shooting the Sklave leader as the Doctor yells for him to stop.

Distraught and defeated, the Sklave teleport away from Planet Earth.

Epilogue
April 16th 1865, Washington D.C.

The Doctor and his companions transport Sam Phillips back to the fifty first century where he belongs.

The Doctor said that the people in the theatre were convinced that the horrors they saw were fictitious, and the surrender document has been returned, meaning that history has returned to normal. The Doctor said that the time belt is far too dangerous to be used again and he personally disbands the Watchmen so they can’t cause any further disruptions.

Sam warns them that it’s unlikely that the Sklave just got to 1865 America as they are incapable of time travel, so it’s something the group should investigate. As they leave Sam to go explore this possibility, Arty returns to his chamber onboard the TARDIS and secretly coverts the time belt he recreated from his memory banks….

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Brainsnaffler

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