In search of ‘exotic particles’, the Doctor and Flip arrive 700 feet underground, in a mine in Northern Mexico – only to run into a scientific expedition. Among their number, an exobiologist. They’re all on the hunt for alien life! Deep underground, the team finally uncovers a cave of vast crystals – like ice, despite the heat. And inside the crystal: something frozen. Something trapped in time. If only it were something simple, like a monster. But it’s far, far worse than that.
It is, fairly obviously, inspired by the mysterious Cave of the Crystals in Naica. The perfect location for a Doctor Who story. And it was amusing to read in the news about the crystals containing long-dormant life...
Vortex Ice is a two-part story and paired with a super story by Ian Potter called Cortex Fire, and can be ordered here.
And out in June is another underground story, Doctor Who: Subterranea:
The TARDIS is going underground. When the Doctor and Romana find themselves buried beneath the surface of an alien world, they're soon swallowed up by a giant burrowing machine. This is where the inhabitants of this planet live - in huge, constantly moving, Drill-towns, chewing up the fuel and resources of the planet in order to survive.
But something else lurks in the earth. Something that feeds on the Drill-towns. Something that is relentless and will not stop.
The Silex are hunting.
This is, of course, a steampunk tale about Dickensian moles wearing wearing goggles and stovepipe hats. I know, another Dickensian mole story. Another entry in that whole Dickensian mole genre.
My computer hard drive tells me that Subterranea was written way back in September 2014. Another buried time capsule! I’ve re-read it to remind myself what it was about and I think it’s rather good. Sadly it doesn’t contain an extra story by Ian Potter but nevertheless it can be ordered here.