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Episode Two: Act Two

Episode Two: Pet shop from space
By Elegant Soul

Pet Store from Space

Act II


 

Scene 1

 

(Scene opens up with a close-up of Jack asleep in a dimly lit place. The camera pulls back as Jack slowly wakes up, however most of his body is hidden in the shadows. Jack lifts up his head a little, and check his surroundings. He’s inside an old-fashion cage. Outside the cage, across the hall, is something that looks like a tall indoor reservoir or a tall aqua-duct. Jack is lying on a cot that is against the wall. His coat is neatly folded near the foot of the cot. On top of his coat is a medium-sized hand mirror, face down. There is a white door attached to the wall.)

(As Jack slowly gets up, he finds that his body is curled up, like a ball; as if he slept that way. When he stands up, he immediately checks to see if he has any of his gear still with him. Of course, the villains have stripped him of his equipment, but that’s not his biggest concern. Jack notices that something’s not right with his hands. He brings his hands closer to his face, and now the audience sees what’s different. The back of Jack’s hands are covered with a thin layer of brown-red fur. The fur around his wrists are black. His nails have grown as well. Not long enough to be considered claws, but they are a little longer than what they’re supposed to be.)

(Jack stares at one of his hands; his expression is a mixture of disbelief and confusion. As he exams his hand, his other hand unconsciously combs through his hair. Suddenly, he looks startled, when he feels something on the top of his head that doesn’t belong there.)

(He quickly rushes over to the mirror, picks it up, and sees his refection.)

Jack (a little startled): No. . .

(The audience now sees what Jack sees. He now has a pair of fox ears on top of his head. The ears are covered with brown-red fur, while the tips are darker, almost black.)

Jack (shaking his head): No. . . No.(Jack stops as he notices something else. He positions the mirror and opens his mouth a little. He sees he now has delicate, but sharp, fangs.)

(As Jack closes his mouth, he stumbles backwards, until he hits the cot. Jack starts to sit down, but he suddenly jerks back up, as if he sat on something; the mirror slips through his fingers, and lands softly on the cot. Jack turns around and sees nothing but the mirror on the cot. Jack looks behind him, and his eyes widen a little. He reaches behind him, and pulls out a long, bushy, fox’s tail into his sight. The ticked fur is a blend of red, brown-red, and brown. The tip of the tail is a mixture of white and black fur.)

Jack (sighing a little, as he lets go of his new tail): Oh, great.

Ecirc (off-screen, as more lights are turned on, illuminating the room more): Well, aren’t you cute?(Jack turns around, as the audience now sees his changes more clearly. Standing in front of the cage is Ecirc and some of her guards. As Jack walks up to Ecirc, he notices a man standing in the reservoir/aqua-duct. It appears the man is quite fit by the muscular development of his bare torso {with a few hairs on his chest}. He carries a satchel strapped across his chest. His hair is brown, but there are also blue and green streaks in his hair. His eyes are blue, and he is seen from the waist up. However, what looks like blue-green scales are seen below his waist. The man looks sad.)

Jack (when he’s at the front of the cage): What did you do to me?

Ecirc (feinting innocence): Me? (She chuckles a little) I didn’t do a thing. But that guard . . . I don’t know if I should give him a raise or dock his pay . . . (she then pulls out a wallet, opens it, and looks at its contents) What do you think, Captain Jack?(Before Jack could respond, Ecirc realizes something.)

Ecirc (after putting Jack’s wallet away): Oh, how very rude of me! I haven’t introduced myself yet! I’m Helen Ecirc. (She turns to look at the man behind her.) This is my assistant, Glaucus.(Glaucus weakly waves to Jack, as Ecirc looks at Jack again.)

Jack (with a fake smile): How nice to meet you. (Get serious) Where’s the rest of my team?

Ecirc: Oh, they’re somewhere else. I should check on them. I also gave them mirrors. Unlike the rest, you were all unconscious, so you couldn’t fully appreciate the makeover.

Jack (getting aggravated): Makeover? Makeover!? (He indicates his new fox ears and the rest of his changes) This isn’t a makeover! Why are you doing this?(Ecirc thinks about answering him.)

Ecirc: Well, since you’re not returning home, it’s not going to hurt to tell you. Since you’re Torchwood, you already know about aliens. Do you know some of them are really good with business? They’re actually quite reasonable when trading humans.

Jack (figuring out Ecirc’s scheme, and is disgusted about it): You trade humans for weapons?

Ecirc: Not just weapons. Sometimes technology, mostly money; you just got to love those Swiss bank accounts.

At first, it was quite messy. We had to stop the escapees from telling the authorities, which led to hunting them down, killing them, hiding the bodies, cover-ups, the lost of merchandise . . . yada-yada . . . we almost didn’t meet our quota. (She turns to Glaucus and smiles, who looks away) Soon I heard of Glaucus’s research. He found a way to successively combine animal and human DNA, and I found a way to prevent escapes. (She faces Jack again) Who’s going to believe you when you look like a freak? After the makeover, people became less willing to escape. So, productivity goes up, and the customers are pleased. I really think they like the transformed humans, it gives them an . . . unique look.

Jack (furious): This is all business to you? You- (he begins growling, and snarls at Ecirc, baring his fangs at her. Ecirc takes a step back, perplex at Jack’s reaction; even Glaucus looks surprised. Jack soon blinks his eyes as he stops, realizing what he did. He looks shocked, as he covers his mouth.)

Ecirc (taking a step forward, and giggling a little): Well, it seems there’s a little more fox in you than we realized. Doesn’t that make you special? Oh, the customers are going to love this! (Jack looks a little confused, as he removes his hand from his mouth. Ecric notices this.) Don’t tell me you haven’t figured it out? You and your friends are going to be . . . shall we say the ‘headliners’ . . . for tonight’s sale?

Jack (sounding protective): Leave them out of this!

Ecric: What am I suppose to do? Let them stay here? Let them go? Either way that will cause too much trouble. (Before Jack can protest, Ecric starts lecturing, without a place for Jack to interrupt) Now the bathroom is behind that door (pointing to the white door in the cage) it has everything. Meals will be served in two hours. Don’t try a hunger strike, or we will force-feed you. We had those situations before. I also recommend not stealing any of the utensils (she walks a little closer to the cage, her tone sounds a little more serious) or else we have to search you inside and out, and you know that’s not going to be pleasant.(She gives Jack a sick smile.)

Ecirc: Well, I must be off. Don’t worry; I’ll be back.

Jack (as Ecirc and her guards begin to leave): Let me see my team! (Ecirc ignores Jack, however Glaucus stays behind, and watches Jack) Come on; let me talk to them! Where are they? (Glaucus watches Jack yell at Ecirc. He looks at Jack, then Ecirc, then back at Jack.)

Glaucus (before Ecirc leaves the room): Wait.

(Ecirc stops and turns around, looking at Glaucus.)Glaucus: Perhaps we can arrange for him to meet with his team.(Ecirc walks over to Glaucus, as the guards stay behind.)

Ecirc: Oh, really?

Glaucus: There’s plenty of time before . . . (shamefully muttering) the customers arrive . . . (stops muttering) I’m sure we can find a way to have them see each other, one last time.(Ecirc thinks it over.)Glaucus: At least let them say good-bye.

Ecric: Will it be worth it?

Glaucus (understanding Ecric’s choice of words): I’m working on replacing the formulas that were lost during the confrontation as fast as I-

Ecric: No, you misunderstood me. (She leans closer to Glaucus; she runs her fingers down his chest, and specks lustfully) Will it be worth it?

Glaucus (in a reluctant tone of voice): Yes, it certainty will.

Ecric (letting Glaucus go and smiling) Good! (She turns to face Jack) Good news, Captain Jack. Thanks to Glaucus, it seems that it is possible for you to see your friends. Now if you excuse me, I have to set up your reunion.(Ecric then leaves the room with her guards, but Glaucus stays behind. Jack looks at Glaucus, who has a sorrowful expression on his face. Before Jack can say anything, Glaucus dives into the water and leaves. As Glaucus dives, Jack sees the rest of Glaucus’s body: a long, iridescence, blue-green, merman’s tail.)

Scene 2

(Scene is a close-up of Owen’s face, asleep on the floor, in a dark cage. Something small bounces off Owen’s head, and he twitches in response. It happens again.)Tosh (off-screen, whispering): Owen . . . (she calls the same time something bounces off Owen’s face) Owen . . . (she calls a little louder each time) Owen . . . Owen . . . Owen . . . Owen (finally awake and agitated, as he sits up and looks around): What? What?!(He finally sees Tosh, and his anger goes away.)

Owen: Oh, my-Tosh?

(Owen and Tosh are the same {but separate} kind of cage Jack is in. Tosh now has white feathers growing out of her hair. A patch of her hair, near the top of her face, looks like its been dyed red. Her neck is covered with black feathers. Black and white feathers grow from the underside of her arms. The secondary feathers are black and the primaries feathers are white. These feathers make her arms look a little like wings.)

Owen (a little concerned): Tosh? What happened to you?

Tosh (uncertain): I’m not really sure. (She begins walking around. Owen then notices she now has a long plume-like black bird’s tail. She stops in front of Owen.)

Owen: Well . . . are you okay . . . of course you’re not . . . Do you feel sick? Injured?

(Tosh shakes her head. Owen then notices a roll of toilet paper by her feet. Scatter around her feet are small crumpled up balls of toilet paper. Owen then looks at the floor of his cage, and notices more balls of toilet paper.)

Owen (after looking at the balls of toilet paper again): Were you-were you the one throwing those things at me? (Tosh reluctantly nods back in response.)

Owen (a little irritated): Why?

Tosh: I was getting a little worried that you had not yet gotten up. I tried calling you, that didn’t’t work. I couldn’t . . . touch . . . you . . . (Owen raises his hand to stop Tosh.)

Owen (as he puts his hand down): Hang on, did you just say you couldn’t’t touch me?(Tosh nods back.)

Tosh (realizing something): You haven’t had a chance to check yourself yet, have you?

Owen (getting a little worried): No, I’m . . . not ugly, am I?(Tosh shakes her head. Owen looks around his cage. He notices the hand mirror at the foot of the cot. Tosh watches him as he walks up the hand mirror, picks it up, and sees his reflection.)

Owen (frustrated): Oh, bloody-(Spread across Owen’s back are small, but sharp, spikes. The spikes cover his head, and ends at his forehead. There are also spikes on the back of his neck. The spikes end at the back of his elbows on his arms, and the back of his knees on his legs. The spikes are pale yellow, different shades of white, black, grey, and brown. Owen puts the mirror down in the same spot, and looks behind his back.)Owen (sounding a little sarcastic): Great, I have a tail-pretty small though, short too. (He looks at Tosh) Well, it’s official; I’m a bloody hedgehog! (He looks ready to sit down on the cot.)

Tosh (a little concerned): Owen-

Owen: Tosh, don’t say a thing.

Tosh (as Owen starts to sit down on the cot): But Owen-(Immediately after Owen sits down, there is a ripping sound; more specifically, the sound of cloth ripping. Owen’s reaction is a cross between embarrassment realization and shock.)

Owen (sounding a little embarrassed): Bloody-

Tosh (trying not to laugh): . . . There was a reason why you weren’t on the cot.(Owen reluctantly stands up, and looks

at the damage he’s done. Tosh can’t hold it in any longer, and starts laughing. Owen frowns at Tosh.)

Owen (sardonically): Go on; laugh at the half hedgehog boy! I’m sorry I’m not a bleeding bird-of-paradise like you!

Tosh (stops laughing): Actually, Owen, I think I am a crane.

Owen (in a little dismissive tone of voice): Whatever. (He looks behind him and tries pulling out the fabric stuck to his spikes. Tosh watches him.)

Tosh (a little concerned): May I help?

Owen (looking at Tosh): Now that will be really useful. (He moves his back closer to Tosh, so she can pull the fabric out) Just be . . . careful, okay? I don’t want you to get hurt . . . because of me. (Tosh nods back.)

Tosh (whispering): Thank you.(Suddenly, there is a splashing sound. Tosh stops what she’s doing, and she and Owen look towards to the sound. Owen walks towards the front of the cage, and looks around.)

Tosh: What is it?

Owen: Well, that just makes my day. I believe a merman was watching us.

Scene 3 or the Goose and the Pussycat

(Ianto is shown leaning against the bars of a cage wall. His jacket is off, but his arms are hidden in the dark. He is watching Gwen sleeping on the cot in the cage next to his; however, most of her body is hidden in the shadows. Ianto has a few small greyish-brown feathers growing out of his hair, and at the right angle, the audience sees his neck is covered with dark grey, grey, and brownish-grey feathers.)

(Gwen stirs in her sleep, and slowly starts getting up. Ianto straighten up as Gwen stands up.)Ianto (walking closer to Gwen): Gwen?(The view shifts to Gwen’s perspective.)

Gwen (turning around): Ianto?(She now sees all of Ianto. Besides the feathers in his hair and on his neck, his arms have completely transformed into wings. The wing feathers closest to his body are light grey; as the feathers go further away from his body, they become a darker shade of grey, so that the primaries and secondary feathers are dark grey.)

Gwen (closing her mouth): Ianto . . . your hands . . .!

Ianto (sighing, and lifting up his wings): I know. Whatever changed those people, changed us as well.

Gwen (realizing Ianto’s words): Us?

Ianto (indicating the hand mirror at the foot of the cot in her cage): You better see for yourself.(Gwen goes up to the mirror, picks it up, and looks at her reflection. Gwen now has a pair of dark chocolate brown cat ears on top of her head.)

Ianto (slightly modest, quickly): You also have a tail.

Gwen (looking at Ianto, as she puts the mirror down on the cot): What?

Ianto (trying to sound appropriate): I mean it’s nothing to be ashamed of; I have one too. (He turns around and Gwen sees he now has a dark grey bird’s tail, edged in white.)

Gwen (laughing a little): I look like a Tonkinese!

Ianto (turning around): A what?

Gwen (looking at Ianto): A Tonkinese . . . it’s a breed of cat. I had a neighbour who raised them when I was growing up. (Ianto nods, understanding. Gwen looks around.) Have you seen the others? Jack? Tosh? Owen?

Ianto (shaking his head): No, sorry.

Gwen: Let me guess, whoever kidnapped us was through enough to take all of our equipment?(Ianto nods back. Gwen sighs out of worry and frustration, and begins pacing around her cage. Ianto sees Gwen’s frustration and worry, and tries getting Gwen to talk by an indirect approach.)

Ianto (examining one of his wings): I believe I am a Graylag Goose.

Gwen (stopping, and looks at Ianto): What?

Ianto (putting his wing down): I had a neighbour who raised geese when I was a child . . . so I know a little about geese.(Gwen weakly smiles at him.)

Ianto (serious): You’re worried about Rhys? (Gwen nods back) He seems smart enough to know how busy it gets at Torchwood, so he’s not going to panic if he doesn’t’t hear from you for some time. (Gwen still looks worried) He’s . . . not allergic to cats, is he?

Gwen: I don’t think so.

Ianto: Then you have nothing to worry about.(Gwen weakly laughs, and rubs one of her eyes.)

Gwen: Thank you, Ianto.

Glaucus: (off-screen, in a soft whisper): I’m sorry.

Gwen (looking towards the front of her cage): Did you hear that?

Ianto: (looking at the front of his cage): Hear what? (They both hear a splashing sound) That?

Gwen: No. It was a man’s voice. He sounded like . . . like . . .

Ianto (looking at Gwen): Like what?

Gwen (looking at Ianto): Like he was filled with regret.

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