Monday, 31 December 1990

Anglo-Force: The Formation & The Return Of Saruman Chapter 10

Saruman’s diversionary tactic had not worked, but six of the world’s greatest cities had been largely destroyed. All the monsters save Ebirah had been returned to Ogasawa Island. Burns stood in the control room, gazing at the control screens. Then, Magus entered.
    “I’ve managed to read Kong’s thoughts.” said Burns. “The man who captured him is called…..”
    “Saruman the White.” interjected Magus. “We met his paramour in Turkey.”
    Magus raised his hand, and the two of them were soon back in London. The squads had returned from all around the world. Mr. X greeted Magus.
    “We now know who our adversary is.” said Magus. “Now at last we can lay plans to combat him.”
    “What do you propose?” asked Mr. X.
    “We know that he has mastery over time and space. I propose that we find a way of taking this war where it can not harm anyone.”
    “Where?” asked Burns.
    “That I do not know as yet.”
    Magus had no idea, however, that his idea was being noted by a highly powerful being, many thousands of light years from Earth.

    Saruman sat in the main hall of his mighty castle in Sylvania. His forces had been depleted greatly when the monsters were returned to Ogasawa Island. He knew that he would have to draw forces from elsewhere. As he pondered his next move, Davros, leader of the Daleks, entered.
    “Saruman!” he shouted. “I demand to speak with you!”
    “Not now, Davros.” said Saruman. “I must have time to think.”
    “The time for thinking is over.” said Davros. “Now is the time for action. We must strike now!”
    “Strike where, Davros?” asked Saruman. “As we speak, Mighty Man and Supercop are gathering forces to defend the Americas. Anglo-Force are making plans to defend Europe. All over the world, armies are being gathered. My main weapons, the monsters, are now beyond my grasp!”
    “Even without your monsters, our forces are mighty!” said Davros. “With your orcs, my Daleks, and the evil forces from this planet, we still outnumber them! And besides, the scanners in my space craft detect two of Earth’s monsters are free!”
    “Free?” queried Saruman. “Which ones?”
    “The lobster, Ebirah, is near the South American continent.” Davros replied. “The other is still in it’s home, within a large body of water, a hundred miles away from the home of Dr. Magus!”
    “Then all is not lost.” Saruman smiled. “If Ebirah is near South America, and if I can direct him to the Atlantic Ocean, then another target presents itself, Atlantis!”

    On Ogasawa Island, Dr. Fuji Takada, the scientist in charge of the operation, stood on a balcony gazing out across the island. In the distance he could see the mighty Kong, about to enter the jungle area. As he watched, Magus joined him.
    “You have indeed brought us a great prize, Dr. Magus.” said Takada. “Kong is a mighty capture, a great asset!”
    “An asset you may not be able to keep.” said Magus.
    “What do you mean?” asked Takada.
    “Burns told you how Kong came to be here, did he not?” said Magus.
    “Yes.” Takada replied.
    “A young pilot was also brought with him.” continued Magus. “The pilot died whilst in the present, aged twenty five. My records showed that he should have died in 1973, aged sixty five, leaving a wife and two children. His grandson should have been on a manned space flight to Mars last month, a flight that never happened. At this moment, I have a friend checking if time was altered further. If it was, Kong may have to return to 1933!”

    Saruman sat in his study. Open books lay all over the desk. As he thought about his next move, Captain Shield walked in.
    “What is it?” he snorted. “Can’t you see I’m busy?”
    “I bring important news.” Shield said. “Control of Ebirah has been re-established! He is ours once again!”
    “Excellent!” said Saruman, putting his book down. “Assemble your forces. Ready your aircraft. Direct Ebirah to the mid-Atlantic, and order him to wait there. We travel to Scotland first!”
    The Nightmares prepared their aircraft. Shield supervised as the aircraft was placed within the docking bay of the Dalek’s ship. When all was ready, Saruman boarded the space craft.
    “All is ready.” said one Dalek.
    “Good.” said Saruman. “Davros, where would be the best place to see if your scanners are correct?”
    “In direct orbit above Scotland.” Davros replied.
    “Are you mad, Saruman?” boomed Shield. “Are you proposing that we launch my aircraft from space? It is madness?”
    “Do not doubt me, Shield.” said Saruman. “I have the power to protect your craft when it re-enters the atmosphere. But first, we have to see if it is there.”
    “What are you talking about?” asked Shield.
    “All will become clear within time, Captain.” replied Saruman. “All will become clear.”

    Saruman and the Nightmares were not the only ones who were travelling. For nearly five days. Connor McCloud had been travelling on foot, from his home near Lock Shiel, to probably the most famous loch in Scotland, Loch Ness. He had gone there for a reason unknown to him. It was like he was being drawn to Loch Ness by an unknown force. But now he had arrived at his destination, and he knew that the only thing he could do now was wait. For what, he did not know.

    Chameleon had returned to the make-shift control room in Pendragon’s mansion. He was happy to find that all of the monitoring equipment was in full working order.
    He sat down in the chair to begin his duties, and started checking the scanners. He noticed immediately that a large craft had left Sylvania, and was heading or an orbital position around Earth. He checked with the computer. The craft had just left Earth’s atmosphere. When the computer confirmed this, he contacted Magus.

    On board the Dalek ship, Captain Shield was getting very angry.
    “I don’t believe this.” he said. “Are you telling me that you are going to try and capture  mythical monster? This is madness! It is impossible! The Loch Ness Monster does not exist!”
    “As a scientist, you should know that nothing is impossible.” said Saruman. “The life-scanners on this vessel show that there s life deep within the waters of Loch Ness.”
    “And you believe these ‘walking cans?’” asked Shield.
    “The technology of these ‘walking cans’ surpasses your own, Captain.” said Saruman. “You must remember one thing, though. If it were not for me, you and your comrades would be rotting in some hi-tech Russian prison cell!”
    Then, one of the lead Daleks, Red-4, came over to Saruman.
    “Orbit has been attained.” he said.
    A few minutes later, Saruman and Captain Shield boarded the Nightmares’ aircraft. Captain Shield took his place in the pilot’s chair.
    “I still think this is impossible.” he said.
    “Have faith, Captain.” said Saruman. “Just start your engines.”
    Shield started the jet engines of the black aircraft. The docking bay door of the Dalek space craft opened. Saruman closed his eyes. He was now deep in concentration. A look of doubt appeared on Captain Shield’s face, as he manoeuvred the aircraft to the exit. Then, as the aircraft left the docking bay, a yellow force-field covered it.
    “I’m seeing it, but I’m not believing it!” Shield muttered.
    A rye smile appeared on Saruman’s face. The aircraft entered the Earth’s atmosphere without incident. Within the next few minutes the aircraft was in British airspace.
    Saruman opened his eyes, and turned to Captain Shield.
    “Well, Captain.” he said. “Maybe now you will not doubt me!”
    “Magic and science often find it difficult to exist together.” said Shield. “Maybe with more work we can combine the two.”
    “Enough.” said Saruman. “When you get to Loch Ness, hold your aircraft twenty feet above the water.”

    Five minutes passed. Connor McCloud sat around a small fire in the hills surrounding Loch Ness. He was about to prepare some food when he looked up into the sky and saw the huge black aircraft that belonged to the Nightmares. As soon as he saw the aircraft he leapt to his feet, and ran over to his ruck sack. He searched through the bag until he found what he was looking for. A sword, a valuable sword that had been made in Japan over five hundred years ago. The sword had been given to him by his old friend, Ramirez. As soon as he had found his sword, he ran as fast as he could, down the hills to the shore of Loch Ness. By the time the Nightmares’ aircraft was hovering above the water. McCloud was looking up at it. The side hatch of the aircraft opened. McCloud was shocked when he saw Saruman appear in the hatchway. When McCloud saw this, he rushed back up into the hills. He now stood higher than the aircraft. Saruman continued his search. Then, to Captain Shield’s surprise, he found something. Saruman had found what most people thought did not exist. He had found the Loch Ness Monster.
    Connor McCloud had reached the top of the hill. He then began to run, gradually getting faster and faster. Then, he launched himself into the air with a mighty leap, toward the Nightmare’s aircraft. Within seconds, McCloud landed on top of the aircraft. The aircraft shuddered with the impact. McCloud then swung down into the aircraft, kicking Saruman in the chest and knocking him to the floor.
    “Shield!” cried Saruman. “Deal with him!”
    Shield put the aircraft on automatic pilot, and rushed to Saruman’s aid. He hurled his shield at McCloud, and knocked him off his feet. Shield then moved toward him, but McCloud kicked him in the stomach. Shield was sent reeling, and McCloud tried to plant his sword into the Russian. He just managed to raise his shield in time. As this battle took place, Saruman started his work once again. The water of the loch began to swirl about. Then, a whirlpool began to start in the dead centre of the loch. Then a monstrous head appeared above the water. The head was followed by a long neck, and then a huge, turtle-like body. The Loch Ness Monster had been found, and soon, he would be under Saruman’s control.
    “Shield!” Saruman shouted. “I have the monster. Deal with the intruder!”
    “He is too much for me!” Shield screamed.
    Saruman raised his hand, and McCloud slumped to the ground.
    “Head to the mid-Atlantic.” Saruman ordered.
    The monster hung in mid-air, then a huge amount of water from the loch floated out of the lake, and formed itself into a cube-like shape around the monster. Shield then steered the aircraft toward the Atlantic Ocean. Saruman walked over to the fallen McCloud.
    “This man looks familiar.” he said. “Perhaps I have encountered this man before.”

    Carfax Abbey, near Whitby in Yorkshire. In the cellar of the house stood it’s former occupant, Count Vladimir Dracula. Chained in a hastily rigged cell was Lawrence Talbot, in an open crate beside the cell was the body of the Frankenstein monster. Dracula had Mother Nature and Dr. Theophilus with him.
    “Tell me, Theophilus, you can trigger Talbot’s transformations, can’t you?”
    Theophilus nodded. He pressed his fingers to his temples. With a cry of pain Talbot became the wolf man.
    “It is a simple process.” sneered Theophilus. “I merely have to stimulate certain centres of his brain.”
    He gazed down into the open crate.
    “We can do nothing to revive this creature until we have the equipment we need.”
    “Where can we obtain such equipment?” asked Dracula.
    Theophilus looked grave.
    “There is our problem.” said Theophilus. “The only suitable equipment is at Craigmillar Castle.”
    The pallid face of the vampire broke into an unholy smile.
    “That is our purpose! We are going to occupy Magus elsewhere while Saruman steals the secrets of Craigmillar Castle!”

    Twenty minutes passed before the Nightmares’ aircraft reached the mid-Atlantic. Once it did, the aircraft again hovered twenty feet above the lashing waves. The Loch Ness Monster was still encased in a ‘cube’ of water.
    “Message from Red-4.” said Shield. “Ebirah is near our position.”
    “And he shall soon be joined by this monster.” said Saruman. “Now silence. I must have complete concentration.
    Saruman opened the side hatchway of the aircraft. He peered down to his capture. He placed his hand on his temple, and closed his eyes. Slowly, the ‘cube’ containing the monster began to lower itself into the water. Within a minute, the monster was in the Atlantic Ocean.
    “Now go!” boomed Saruman. “Join Ebirah! Journey to Atlantis! Destroy it!”
    Saruman closed the hatchway, and joined Shield in the cockpit.
    My plans are going well, Captain.” he said. “Atlantis will soon be destroyed, I have a prisoner, and the most powerful cavourite source in the world will soon be mine!”

    Magus was seated in his study at Craigmillar when his telephone rang.
    “Solo here, Magus. You’re help’s needed here!”
    Soon Magus and Magician were standing in a morgue in York. On the slab before them lay two young women.
    “I know you’re a qualified doctor as well as a wizard. What do you think?”
    Adjusting his spectacles, Magus examined the bodies.
    “No blood at all.” he said grimly. “And two small puncture marks in the neck. I think we know where Dracula is.”
    “I’ll have Carfax Abbey sealed off.” said Solo.
    Magus shook his head.
    “Too dangerous. I the meantime I must deal with this threat.”
    He turned to Magician.
    “Fetch me two wooden stakes, a mallet and an axe.”
    As the youngster left Magus produced two cloves of garlic from his pocket. He inserted one into the mouths of each body. Then, Magician returned with the mallet and the axe, but no stakes. Magus moved out into the corridor and broke two legs from a table. He sharpened them to a point with the axe. Posing one above the heart of the first body, he raised the mallet and brought it down with a strength that bellied his appeared. The body sat up, impaled on the stake, and let out a hideous yell. Another blow of the mallet smashed it back to the table. Magus moved to the other, and went through the same process. Then, taking the axe, he raised it over the neck of one of the bodies.
    “Get thee to hell!” he cried. “May thou foul carcase be food and jackals and thy blood drink for pariah dogs!”
    Paul Solo stood in one corner, his face ashen. Magician stood, grim faced.
    “Was that necessary?” asked Solo.
    Magus turned a grim face towards the policeman.
    “It was. It will be again. Saruman has set one of the most evil creatures ever known loose in this country. Of all those in our alliance he knows only I have knowledge of vampires. He wants me out of his way, out of Craigmillar.”

    Even as Magus spoke, the Nightmares had retuned with Saruman to Scotland. They gazed up at the great building that was Craigmillar.
    “How do we get in?” asked Captain Shield.
    “We will see.” said Saruman.
    He walked to the door and hammered on it. As it swung open a huge figure stood in the great doorway.
    “Yes?” it said in a voice which shook the ground.
    “You are Igor, Magus’ butler?” asked Saruman.
    Igor nodded. It was the last thing he did before Saruman struck him down with a brain blast. The two walked into the castle. Magus’ laboratory was soon located, and the equipment they needed was soon removed. Then, Saruman found a door he could not open, for it was locked mystically. Gradually, he opened the two. Within stood two wolves and two tigers, unearthly red fire glowing in their eyes. Sensing that these were creatures he could not battle, he fled back to where Shield was waiting.
    “Me must return to the Dalek ship!” he cried. “Let us be gone!”

    Magus, Magician and Solo sat in the office of the Chief Constable of Yorkshire, Sir James MacKay.
    “Tell me, Doctor.” said MacKay. “You want us to trace someone by the name of Van Helsing?”
    Magus nodded.
    “It may sound incredible, Sir James, but you have the greatest of vampires on your ‘patch’ as it were. I cannot possibly be in all places at all times to deal with this threat. Van Helsing is the only other man in this country who could possibly help.”
    MacKay picked up the telephone. Soon, the police computers were trying to trace a Hugo Van Helsing. They were in luck. MacKay returned to the office.
    “We’ve traced Hugo Van Helsing. He’s teaching biology at a small private school in Cornwall.”
    Magus leaped up.
    “It is there we must go!”
    Just as he rose the telephone rang. MacKay answered.
    “It’s for you.” he said, passing the phone to Magus.
    “It is me, Igor, sir.” said a deep voice at the other end of the line. “Saruman the White has paid us a visit.”
    “What did he take?”
    “Only the equipment from your laboratory. He could not get into your study.”
    “The lab equipment is still enough.” replied Magus.
    He hung up.
    “We will soon have the Frankenstein monster to deal with as well. We must act now!”

    The Dalek space ship arrived back in Sylvania. The entrance to the ship opened, and three Daleks, led by Red-4, exited the ship. They were soon followed by Death Angel, who was carrying the Highlander across his shoulder. Saruman followed them out of the ship. He was closely followed by Captain Shield.
    “Take him to the dungeon.” Saruman ordered. “I will deal with him later.”
    Saruman waited for Shield to catch up with him.
    “Do you still doubt me, Captain?” he asked.
    “I still have some.” Shield replied. “But I have a feeling they will soon be gone.”
    “Good.” said Saruman. “Now, follow me. Your scientific knowledge will soon be used.”
    Shield followed Saruman down a long, dark corridor. They soon came to a huge door. Saruman opened the door. A lighted torch provided very little light, but Shield could tell he was standing at the top of a very high stairway. Saruman then reached up for a huge electrical switch. He pulled the switch down, and the room was filled with light.
    “I have never been in this room before.” said Shield.
    “It will soon become your laboratory.” said Saruman. “Magus’ equipment will soon be installed, under your supervision. The Frankenstein monster will soon be awake. Now, firstly, we will deal with our prisoner.”
    The two men left the room, and soon entered the bowls of the castle, the dungeon. The dungeon was very damp and cold, and the lighting was poor. A stench of rotting flesh filled the air. They walked over to a large table. The Highlander had been placed on this table.
    “Every man has a weakness.” said Saruman. “Whether they have special powers or not.”
    Saruman placed his hand on the Highlander’s hand. He began to probe his mind, getting deep into his thoughts and memories.
    “Such memories!” Saruman said. “There is no way this man can be that old! His memories date back to the fifteenth century! Take this one to my private laboratory. I must study this man more!”
    Two orcs came and dragged the Highlander from the table.
    “I will now attend to the next stage of my plan.” said Saruman. “The destruction of Atlantis!”