Sunday, 30 August 2015

Articles Episode Breakdown - From Out of the Rain by DJ Forrest




Episode Breakdown: From Out of the Rain


Written by Peter J Hammond
Produced by Richard Stokes
Directed by Jonathan Fox Bassett
Breakdown by DJ Forrest


In the dead of night, in the early ‘20s and lit up like a Christmas tree, The Joshua Joy Travelling circus offers a ‘once in a lifetime show’ for all who enter. The show master entices all in with a special ticket, while performers show off their talents inside the circus, from jugglers, strongmen and all manner of other circus entertainment.  Through the trees the crowd follow the bright lights, including a young woman with her young child. 

   “Ladies and gentlemen, girls and boys, have we got a show for you tonight! A once in a lifetime show. Amaze your ears, astonish your eyes, then run along home and tell your friends and neighbours. A once in a lifetime show, never to be forgotten for the rest of your lives. So, why not step inside?”
    The Ghostmaker offers a ticket down to the young blonde haired child, tantalising her with what wonders she’ll find inside. 
   “We're waiting for you.”  He says.
As the girl takes the ticket, a fox cries out in the night distracting the young woman.  She takes her eyes off her daughter for mere seconds.  The bright lights of the circus vanish, and she finds herself alone in the field as a light mist rolls in.  Her daughter and the circus have gone!

In a dusty room, old reels of film lie on metal shelving; Jonathan is entertained by old home movies on a Steenbeck machine.  They depict the life of a bygone era, in Cardiff, around the turn of the 20th Century.
  
In an underground base in Cardiff, Captain Jack Harkness makes himself a coffee.  He glances up as he hears Myfanwy screeching in the rafters, but continues on towards his office.

As the film reel continues to play, Jonathan is mesmerised at the quality of the old film. 
   “Great!”
Suddenly the picture changes from happy military men to a sinister man in a top hat beckoning towards the camera.
   “What is that?”

Jack is distracted by the sound of circus music and looks up from his workstation.  It’s gone as soon as he hears it.

Back on the screen the Ghostmaker continues to beckon at the camera.  Jonathan is having none of it. 
   “I don't know where you came from, mate, but I know where you're going.”
He stops the film, and is about to edit it when the windows blow open startling him.  He quickly leaps to his feet knocking the editing equipment onto the ground.  As he closes the windows, the film whirrs quickly, yet all the while, as the images of 20th century life continue on in the background, the Ghostmaker continues to beckon towards the camera in a slow but ghostly fashion as the film reaches its natural end.  Jonathan is spooked.

Toshiko descends the steps in the Hub armed with a folder and sets it down on her work station.  Jack calls to her across the quiet Hub, his voice echoing around the cavernous room.
   “Tosh?”
   “Hmm?”
   “I heard this sound an old sound, like a pipe organ.” He tells her, walking over, his hands in his trouser pockets, blue shirt sleeves rolled up.
   “A what?”
   “Did you hear anything?”
   “No.”
   “Is there a circus in town, or a travelling fair, something like that?”
   “On a night like this? They'd be wasting their time.” Toshiko replies carefully working on an electronic piece of equipment with tweezers.
   “Where's Ianto? He would know.”
   “He's gone to the cinema with Gwen and Owen. Some kind of opening night he wanted to check out. The building's got a record of Rift activity but it's been quiet for years so…” Toshiko looks up from her work, but Jack has already gone.

It’s lashing it down with rain as three sopping wet people walk quickly along Hope Street.
   “A nice trip to the cinema, you said.”  Owen calls to Ianto.
   “Yeah, that's right.”
   “Ianto, there's nothing down here, mate.”
   “Oh, come on, Owen.”
   “It's more than just a cinema. It's the Electro.” Ianto tells them, as they reach the building.
   “Oh, wow!” Gwen exclaims.
They cross the road and head into the building.

Dressed very dapper in a dinner jacket, his wife in the ticket booth in her ‘very much of the era red uniform and pillbox hat’, Dave, the owner is less than pleased that his son is nowhere in the building.
   “Where's that stupid bloody son of ours?”

Jonathan is running late.  He slams the warehouse door shut and legs it across the empty warehouse where lightning strikes through the dirty windows.  He’s clutching a reel of film.
   “He said he’d be here on time.”  Faith assures him.
   “He’d better be he’s got the film.”  Dave smiles as a customer acknowledges him.  He turns back to his wife.  “And what good is a cinema without a film?” 
The door closes behind three very wet cinema goers.  Dave resumes his pleasantries and welcomes them.
  “Good evening, gentlemen, evening, madam. Welcome to the Electro.”
Dave shakes hands with Ianto.  Gwen smiles over.

Jonathan runs quickly down the steps as the rain continues to lash heavily.  He pulls on his coat hood and leaps down the last remaining steps before haring up the road.
The tyres screech as Jack takes the corner sharply.  Headlights on full.  He hammers the vehicle along the quiet dark streets.

Inside the cinema
   “I love this place. I used to come here with my dad. They'd show kids' films on Saturday morning.” Ianto tells them, admiring the old film pieces.
   “So, where's the popcorn and the ice cream?” Gwen asks looking around her.
   “I think you've missed out. It's educational.” Owen replies patting her arm.
   “Ok. Come on.”
All three make their way into the auditorium.  Jonathan arrives sopping wet and out of breath.  His Dad is pleased to see him!
   “What sort of time do you call this?”
   “Sorry, Dad.”
   “People are waiting.”
   “You won't believe this, right. When I was splicing the film…”
   “Look, just get up to that projection room, will you? Now!”

Jonathan pulls off his wet coat after reaching the projection room and opens the film tin.  The sound of circus fairground music can be heard faintly.  Jonathan still spooked from earlier shakes his head.  It’s just his imagination.  He prepares the film reel for the audience.

In the Auditorium his mum and dad Dave and Faith are centre stage, Bernard the pianist waits patiently for the film to start.  Dave addresses the audience.
   “As proud owners of the Electro Museum, it is our privilege to be able to show you how the cinema and Hope Street looked in days gone by. If you watch carefully, who knows, you may even see long-dead members of your family waiting in the cinema queue. Bernard!”

Bernard belts out a hearty tune befitting the era as the curtains open. Jonathan starts the film.  The trip down memory lane is disrupted by the fairground circus folk showing off their skills.
   “Do you recognise any of your long lost relatives, Gwen?”  Owen asks.  Gwen grins. A female hula hoop artist comes into shot.  “There’s Aunty Peggy.  She’s been on the gin again.”
Gwen erupts into fits of giggles.
   “Can you be quiet?”  Ianto asks transfixed on the screen.
Dave is less than impressed.  “He’s showing the wrong bloody film!”  Dave heads to the projector room.
   “Where’s Hope Street gone?”  Gwen asks curiously as all they see are circus entertainers.

Upstairs in the Projector Room, Jonathan sees the Ghostmaker beckoning towards the camera again.  He hadn’t removed it.
   “Oh shit!”
He attempts to switch off the projector but he can’t.  Owen and Ianto are transfixed by the characters on the screen.
   “Where the hell did that film come from?”
   “I’ve no idea.  I swear I didn’t edit those clips.”
   “Don’t be stupid.”
   “It’s true.”  Jonathan replies.
   “Well, just bloody well change it, will you?”
   “I can't. The machine won't switch off.”
   “Oh, get out of the way.”
   “This is crazy.”

Down in the Auditorium, Owen and Gwen are bored.
   “It's the same pictures over and over again.” Gwen states watching the same juggler and clown for the umpteenth time.
   “Yeah. Right, come on, let's go.”
As the clip continues to show different performers, Ianto spots a man holding a gun to his head and pretending to fire it, then a gun under his chin to an audience of onlookers.
   “Wait! I just saw Jack.” Ianto replies startled.
   “Where?” Gwen asks.
   “In the film.”
   “What are you talking about?” Owen asks.
   “What?”
   “I swear I saw him.” Ianto replies.
   “Ianto”
   “Wait just wait.”
But Jack’s moment to surprise his other team members doesn’t come round again.  Only the Ghostmaker beckoning all to enter as the film dies and the auditorium is thrown into darkness once more.  The pianist stops playing.
   “Come on.”
   “Let's go.”
   “Yes, come on. Are you coming?” Gwen asks finally glad to leave.
The audience begin to filter out.  Ianto gathers up his wet coat and gets to his feet, he’s startled by two shadowy figures seen exiting the auditorium ahead of him.  

At the Hub, Toshiko’s computer behaves out of character.  Her work is replaced by a series of letters cascading down the screen like a waterfall then freezing before resuming their original course. 

As people exit the Electro, Jack pulls up in the SUV, and enters the building.  The rain hasn’t relented at all.
Ianto still stares at the stage as he relates the information to Jack, in the quiet auditorium.
   “When the film stopped, these shadows went past me.”  He tells him.
   “What kind of shadows?”
   “I don't know. It wasn't clear. There was something else. You were up there on the screen. Large as life.”
   “What was I doing?”
   “You were on some sort of stage, outside a big tent. You seemed to be part of a travelling show.”
   “I heard it. Heard its music. Just a snatch of it.”
   “That film was beautiful. All those acts performing for us. Part of history, trapped on film forever.”
   “Their days were numbered. Cinema may have saved their images, but it finished off the travelling shows. Killed them.” 

At a bus stop, Nettie, a young adult, waits for a bus ride home, while across the road, two strange figures – the Ghostmaker and his female companion, a young girl with a woolly hat, wearing a swimming costume and tights, watch her. 
   “I’m at the bus stop, Mum, by Hope Street.”  With his hand on his hip, the Ghostmaker crosses the quiet road towards the bus stop, while the girl dances around the puddles, stooping to collect rain water in one.   “No, Gemma’s brother couldn’t bring me home.  His car don’t work.  Well, what about Dad?  Can’t you wake him? Mum?”
   “Would you like a ticket for the travelling show, my dear?”  The Ghostmaker asks holding out a pink ticket out to the girl.
   “No, thanks.”
   “Every young person's dream.”
   “Perhaps she'd like to join the show instead.” Pearl suggests, stroking Nettie’s hair before licking her own hand.
   “Why not? You could travel with us. Forever.”
   “Look, just go away, will you? Did you hear what I said?”
As the Ghostmaker/Ghostmaker touches Nettie’s mouth the girl gasps for breath, as if suffocating.  He lifts out a silver flask with a shell symbol on the front and guides Nettie’s last breath into it before replacing the stopper.  Pearl finds it funny!

Jack leant against the two projectors at the Electro.
   “So you say the projector went haywire?”
   “Yeah,” replies Jonathan.  “Even with the mains switched off it still kept running.  Playing those film clips.  It’s like it had a mind of its own.”
Ianto flicked on the machine.
   “Working now.”  Ianto replies after running the machines a good few seconds before switching them off again.
   “I know.”  Jonathan replies.
   “So where’d you get these?”  Jack asks kicking the reel tins below the projector.
   “In the basement here.  There were stacks of cans.  See, I’ve been compiling old footage of Hope Street and the Electro for the opening night.  But the circus clips weren’t on it, I swear.”
   “The film that was shown wasn't meant to be here?”
   “No. And that's what's so scary. I mean, it kind of played itself. It's like it wanted to be seen.”
   “Like something tried to get through?”
   “Yeah. And there was a sound, like old fashioned music. Played on an organ or something.” Jack cast a glance at Ianto.  “And there was a face looking out at me. And there was a smell, like, like bromine or iodine.” Jonathan explains.
   “Like the film itself.” Ianto replies.
   “That's right.”
   “And this is the film?” Jack asks placing his left hand on the projector box.
   “Yeah.”
Ianto opens the box and lifts out the film reel.  Toshiko comms him from the Hub.
   “Jack, the systems here are behaving very oddly. And I heard the sound you mentioned. That fairground sound.”
 “Can you trace the source?”
 “No. But there was a peak in Rift activity at the Electro, then nothing. Plus I'm recording unusual Rift traces nearby.”
 “Where?”
 “Chain Lane. Runs parallel to Hope Street. Sending the coordinates now.”
 “Tosh, we're on our way. Tell the police we're dealing with it.”

Seated in the bus shelter Nettie stares out as if she’s a wax figure.  No expression, no batting of eyelids. The SUV pulls up nearby and all four dash over to the poor girl.
   “Epileptic, maybe, could be wearing a tag?”  Jack asks as Owen checks Nettie’s pulse.
   “She isn't.” Owen confirms.
   “She got ID?” Ianto asks.
   “I'll check.” Gwen checks.
   “What's wrong?” Jack asks as Owen looks confused.
   “She's got a heartbeat but she isn't breathing. Shouldn't really be alive. And look at her mouth. She's got no saliva. Look, her lips are cracked. Dry as a bone. We need to get her to hospital.”

At the Windsor Café the owner is finishing up for the evening.  The Ghostmaker and his accomplice watch her for a while.  Pearl stares at her through the window, the Ghostmaker rattles the door handle.  The unsuspecting owner opens it.
   “Sorry, we're closed. Do you hear me? We're closed.”
   “Make her cry.” Pearl asks looking at the woman from over the Ghostmaker’s shoulder.  
   “You what?”
   “I want to drink her tears.”
The Ghostmaker touches the woman’s mouth with his fingers and takes her breath away.

In the hospital, Owen relays the details of the young girl to Jack. 
   “Her name's Nettie Williams. Her parents are outside. Apparently she was visiting a friend.”
   “Have any witnesses come forward?”
   “No.”
   “Has anyone been able to communicate with her?”
   “No. No change in her condition.”
   “Motor response?”
   “Non-existent, and they're treating it as a coma.”
   “And they're wrong?”
   “Totally. There's no signs of cerebral dysfunctions, no symptoms of hypoxia, and her body's dehydrated. You know when a spider sucks the liquid out of its victims? Well, this is a bit like that, except they've left her partly alive. She couldn't cry about it even if she wanted to, the poor kid. She's got no tears.”
   “There's been another one.” Ianto enters ahead of the hospital gurney bringing in the café owner. Owen helps to pull her in.
   “Who's she?”
   “We don't know. The paramedics found her. It freaked them. She was lying in an open doorway looking like this.” The nurse explains to Jack.  Owen checks her status.
   “Where was this?” He asks.
   “The corner of Hope Street.” The nurse replies.
   “The same. Heartbeat but no breath.” Jack comes over and checks for heartbeat and breath.
   “Her mouth's been drained of moisture.”

Along the hospital corridor Owen, with Jack, Gwen and Ianto are at a loss as to who would operate in this manner.
   “This makes no sense, they're almost dehydrated and possibly brain dead yet somehow they're still with us.” Owen says.
   “Some part of them has been taken elsewhere?”
   “Oh, that's impossible.”
   “For the body to be alive there must be a life force somewhere. Yet they've separated it, stolen it.”
   “Who has the power to do that?” Ianto asks as the team reach the exit to the hospital.
   “I don't know, but we need to find out fast. Two people chosen at random. Who's next?”
   “Whatever's doing it has the whole city to choose from.”
   “Or the world.”

Sitting in front of Jack’s office desk the team watch the film reel, of the circus folk performing.
   “I knew those two. They argued day and night.” Jack reminisces of the two clowns fooling around. A tightrope walker appears then a quick shot of Jack dressed in hunting gear with a hunting hat, gun pointing at his head. Owen is shocked.
   “That is you.”  Toshiko rewinds the film and plays it back again.  “Alright, now I've seen everything.”
   “I told you so.” Ianto replies.
   “You did stand-up.” Gwen says.
   “I never did stand-up.”
   “Okay, then. A song and dance.”
   “I was sensational.”
   “I don't believe this, Jack. What were you doing there?”
   “He was part of this freak show.”
   “Yeah, some things never change.”
   “Are you being rude about me? Look at the state of them.”
The strongman appears.
   “But I do love his leotard.” Gwen replies.  Owen laughs.
It’s the end of the show and the troupe wave goodbye to the camera.
   “The Night Travellers.”
   “The what?”
   “Tosh, play that back. So, they did exist.”
   “Did you work with these people?”
   “I didn't work with them. I never knew anyone who did. They only performed in the dead of night. Anyway, it was just a tale that was around at that time. A ghost story. They came from out of the rain. That's how people described them.”  Jack says leaving his office.  Gwen and Owen follow, leaving Toshiko and Ianto in the office.

In the main hub Owen was curious about the travelling circus.
   “Jack, what did these Night Travellers do?”
   “Left a trail of damage and sorrow wherever they performed.”

Standing beside Toshiko behind the desk, Ianto, with his arms folded, was certain something was wrong with the film.
   “Tosh, can you run this frame by frame?”
   “Er, sure. What are you looking for?”
   “I'm not sure. Something's wrong. Something's missing.”

In the Hub…

   “This must be years back now, yeah?” Gwen asks as she and Owen flick through physical files.
   “Eighty odd years. Then the travelling shows faded away. No one came to watch them and without an audience they died out. Forgotten. Until all we have to remember them by were these film clips.”
   “Jack!”  Ianto shouts from the office. 

   “This film, it's not the same one we saw at the cinema.” Ianto tells him, pointing towards the projector.
   “Of course it's the same one.” Gwen replies.
   “No, things are different. Tosh?”
She runs the film again.
   “Easy to miss at first, but after watching it a few times I realised. Just there. There was a woman in front of that water tank.” Ianto points to the screen.
   “Yeah, there was, Ianto, you're right.” Gwen says.  Owen studies the film with fresh eyes.
   “That's right, I remember her. Wearing almost nothing.”
   “And there was a man in like a top hat, a sort of MC.” Gwen remembers as she stares at the blank space left by the Ghostmaker. 
   “Yeah.”
   “That's right. He was reaching down to the audience.”
   “Are you sure we've brought the right can of film back?”
   “Positive.”
   “So what are we saying? That two people from a piece of film have decided to go AWOL?” Toshiko asks incredulously.
   “Yeah. Like you said, trapped in film forever. When they opened the cinema, it gave them a chance. When that kid ran the film, he let them loose.”
   “So, so they've become physical. They've escaped the film?” Ianto finds it a little hard to believe.
   “We need to find out more about the havoc they've caused in the past. We need evidence. Possible witnesses.”
   “After all that time it'll be tricky. What, town and parish records?“
   “Sure, we can do that. How far back do you want us to go?"
   “As far as you can. We don't sleep till we find them. Toshiko, keep checking for sightings. There's got to be some way of tracing them. Ianto, with me, I need your local knowledge.”
   “Oh, is that what you're calling it these days?”

Jack sits alone in the Conference room searching old records as Ianto enters and draws up a seat beside him. 
   “So, two people who should have been dead for years. What kind of creatures are they?”
   “No one ever knew the Night Travellers were coming. They'd just appear from nowhere. Not like the team I was with. We'd send out flyers, bang drums, blow whistles.”  Jack laughs as he tells Ianto a little about his past.  “Ours was a small company. Working the UK, trying to find paying customers. I was sent to investigate rumours of the Night Travellers.”
   “By who?”
   “Long story. So I joined a travelling show. I was billed as the man who couldn't die. The Night Travellers always found an audience. They knew where to look.”

Flashback of ‘The Joshua Joy Travelling Show’

   “Step along now, ladies and gentlemen, come and see the show of a lifetime! Fill your eyes with the spectacle of the tattooed man. Witness for yourself the superhuman strength of the Mighty Stromboli. He can take on Samson, Goliath and Hercules with one arm tied behind his back, and still have strength to dig their graves. Come along now, ladies and gentlemen, the night won't wait forever. Come and see the amazing Pearl. She lives in water. She sleeps among the waves. She can reach the bottom of the oceans. She has swum the seven seas. She is the nearest thing that you will ever see to a living mermaid. She will take your breath away.”

In the Conference room…

   “How many other old cinemas are there in Cardiff?” Jack asks Ianto as he glances through an array of old photographic print outs.
   “Most of them have been pulled down.”  Ianto brings up the location of the Plaza Picture House on the wall mounted monitor, honing in on the map. 
   “And the ones that are left?”
   “Converted. This one is a pub.”
   “Four pint jugs for a fiver and girls in free before eleven.”

At her work station, Toshiko is picking up a strange signal.
   “I'm registering the sea.” She hones in, tapping a few more keys. 
   “The sea?”  Gwen asks intrigued.  She comes over to view the monitor with Owen.
   “Inland.  Running through the centre of town.”
Toshiko glances back towards Owen and Gwen.  It really doesn’t make any sense.

The family of four travel in their car along the quiet, dark and damp road, it’s late.  He suddenly brakes as he spots two people in the road, the ghostmaker and a young woman.  His wife wakes up startled.
   “What is it?”
   “I thought, I thought I saw something.”
   “Saw what?”
   “Ghosts.”
   “Don't be stupid.” She replies.  Suddenly without warning, the ghostmaker and the young woman Pearl are beside her window.  She screams.

Back in the Conference room…

   “So the Electro is the only one left.”
   “Could the Night Travellers have performed there?”
   “Possibly.”
   “If cinema killed the travelling show, maybe this is their way of fighting back. Their only chance to escape before every old movie theatre and piece of film has gone. What better way to get revenge?”
   “They were left forgotten, on pieces of film.”
   “And now they're looking for a new audience.”

Jack and Ianto enter the Hub and see Owen and Gwen watching Toshiko at the computer. 
   “What is it, Tosh?” Jack asks.
   “She was picking up the sea.” Gwen replies pointing at the screen.
   “In the middle of town.”
   “It's gone now. I was getting the sound of waves, seagulls. I could almost smell the ozone.”
   “No other sightings?”
   “No.”
   “What the hell are they up to?”

Pearl washes herself in a puddle of rainwater, in a large empty open air pool.  The Ghostmaster sits watching her, his hat resting beside him. Candles light up around the pool.
   “I like the lights. They make the rain glisten. And they're part of us.”  Pearl says, walking back to the Ghostmaker.
He hears their sighs from the silver flask and lifts it out from the inside of his coat and holds it up to his ear.  He chuckles darkly.
Pearl takes a seat beside him, the Ghostmaster is mesmerised by her beauty.
   “Smell the water. Taste it.” She urges him as he inhales her scent and licks her hand.  She reaches for the flask in his right hand.
   “Careful.”
   “How many now?”
   “Six.”
   “I wish I could see the air they once breathed.”
   “You know you can never see it. We could never see it.”
   “We have their ghosts here. I can see them whenever I want. Our audience. They'll never leave us.”
   “You can't see, but we can hear. Listen.”
   “I can! I can hear them. Little last breaths, still sighing their sighs. Can we bring the others? Make ghosts forever? The others shouldn't be in some old dark cupboard. They should be here with us. And I want to travel again. Perform.”
   “All right. But first we need the rest of that film.”

Jack, Ianto follow the nurse into the Emergency room at the hospital. 
   “Found in a car with their parents, near Hope Street.”
   “Oh, no.” Ianto stared at the children, lying in the beds, eyes wide open, no response, just the monitor gently bleeping a heartbeat rhythm.
   “What happened to the parents?”
   “They're in the same cataleptic state.”
   “They came from out of the rain.”
   “What did you say?” The nurse asks, looking back to Jack.
   “Nothing.”  Jack laughs.  “Why?”
   “Those words, from out of the rain. I'm sure I've heard them before. Oh, I remember, It was Christina, she was a patient.”
   “Here?”
   “No, at Providence Park, it's a psychiatric hospital.”
   “I know it.”
   “I used to work there. She was a full time patient, been there since she was a child. She was a strange one. Whenever anything, any kind of entertainment show was laid on, she became scared. She'd run away and hide.”
   “Did she say why?”
   “Yes. She said they were coming to steal her last breath. Poor love.”
Jack smiles as the nurse leaves the room.  He turns to Ianto.
   “I think we've just found ourselves our first witness.”

At Providence Park, during the daylight, Ianto pushes Christina, an old woman, in a wheelchair towards a shelter in the grounds of the psychiatric hospital.  Jack walks beside her. 
   “They came from out of the rain. At night. Came to the village.”
   “How old were you at the time?”
   “Oh, just a child. Five, I think, or six. Are you visiting someone?”
Jack laughs.  “Christina, we've come to see you.” He says, taking her hand as Ianto pushes the wheelchair up the step to the battered wooden pavilion to talk.
   “No one comes to see me.” 
Jack laughs, placing a hand on hers.  She frowns at Jack.
   “Your eyes are older than your face.”
Jack glances at Ianto for a second.
   “Is that a bad thing?”
   “Yes. It means you don't belong. It means you're from nowhere.”
   “Christina, tell us about them. The people who came out of the rain.”
   “There was music. Hurdy gurdy music. And acrobats, and a man with fire in his hands.”
   “Who else was there?”
   “A man in dark clothes, and a woman. A beautiful young woman in a silvery costume. She seemed to glisten.”

Cupping her hands, Pearl drinks from the collected rainwater in the empty open air pool, before freshening her face with the cold water.  Walking over to the store room door, in need of a lick of paint, she opens it, and peers in at the catatonic ghosts facing forwards, like an audience!!!

   “They touched you, I can sense it. They touched you as they passed you by.”
   “Tell us about the man, Christina.”
   “Oh. Oh, he spoke to me. He asked if I would like to join the travelling show. He took a kind of flask out of his pocket. It was polished like silver. I asked him his name. Oh, I shall never forget it. I never shall. He said he was the Ghostmaker. He wanted to take my breath and put it in his flask. He said I could travel with his circus. I would be in his audience forever. I turned and ran away as fast as I could. People went missing from the village that night. My mother, my father.”
Ianto places a sympathetic hand upon her knee. 

Jack glimpses at his pocket watch as Gwen locates details of the travelling show while they all gather in the Conference room back at base.

   “Here we go. Church Stretton, 1901. People went missing when a travelling show visited the town. And there was one earlier on, 1898. A small village called Wellsfield.”  Jack hands out the details of Wellsfield.  “These disappearances, there's a lot of old wives' tales attached to them through the years. People still alive but been deprived of breath. Children being told to hold their breath while the travelling show passes by.”
   “Yeah, this local paper, didn't take it seriously. Er, Hunstanton Chronicle, March 1911. Police and doctors were left amused and baffled when Mister Alfred Mace insisted that his dead wife could be brought back to life providing a certain flask could be found. He reckoned that his wife's last breath had been put in a flask.”
   “A silver flask.”
   “And the last breath of each victim.”
   “So that's how he makes his ghosts.”
   “So if we find the flask…”
   “We can save them.”

Jonathan returns to his flat to discover the corrugated door is open and the place has been ransacked.  Reels of film lie unwound on the floor.  He walks carefully towards the bathroom as he hears the sound of running water and is startled to see water spilling from the old free standing bathtub.  As he nears it, Pearl, submersed below the water, reaches out for him.  Jonathan runs out, terrified.  The Ghostmaker watches him leave.

   “Now we have the film. Time to bring the others.”  The Ghostmaker announces as he holds up the film reel, as Pearl enters the room.

Having put enough distance between him and the flat, Jonathan makes an urgent phone call. 
   “Jack, this is Jonathan. They're here, they're at my flat. You've got to get over here now!”
The SUV skids to a halt outside the flat. Jack and Ianto exit quickly and weapons drawn enter the warehouse leading to the flat.  Jonathan is with them.
   “Who’s in there?”
   “A woman, lying under water, I thought she’d drowned.”
   “Anyone else?”  Ianto asks.
   “No.”
Jack enters the flat, nodding to Ianto that it’s safe to enter.  Weapon raised he proceeds into the room.  With a glance towards Jonathan, he makes his way towards the bathroom, the door now closed.
   “Be careful.”  Jonathan says, watching him go.
Jack kicks open the door but there is no sign of the mermaid, only the full bath which is steadily dripping over the edge.  Jack lowers his gun. 
By the time they enter the flat, the Ghostmaker and Pearl have left the building. 

Dave and Faith enter the Electro foyer and hear the sound of piano music coming from the auditorium.
   “Did Bernard say he was coming here today?”  He asks his wife.
   “No.”  She replies.
In the auditorium, the piano plays without a pianist.

   “David.” Faith clutches her husband’s arm.
Pearl makes her way from the side of the auditorium towards them.  She holds up an usherette’s torch.  
   “This way please.”

Back at the flat…

   “So they haven't left the area.”
   “They probably can't. Probably need to be near the Electro.” Jack says, holstering his revolver.
   “All my old film cans have been opened.”
   “What was on them?”
   “Clips from circus sideshows.”
   “They're bringing more through.”
   “Then we need to stop them. Gwen, Owen. Meet us at the Electro.”
   “Look, what's going on? I've got to find my Mum and Dad. If anything's happened to them. Hey, there's that smell again. Like chemicals.”
   “Yeah, I can smell it. Like when you develop a film.”
   “That woman, she grabbed me. But her hand, it was different. It wasn't like a hand. It wasn't like flesh. It was like touching a piece of plastic, a piece of celluloid.”
   “They were on this film for eighty years. Became part of it. What if we filmed them?”
   “A film of a film?”
   “Yeah. Then they'd be trapped.” Jack says holding up an old cine camera. 
   “Is this thing loaded?”

Leaving the flat…

   “If they were trapped on film before…” Jack muses.
   “They can be got rid of in the same way.” Ianto adds.
   “Okay, let's suppose they're made of camphor and nitrate, made of shadows, made of light, just enough light.”
   “We film them. Capture them in that…”
   “Then expose the film to as much light as possible.”
   “Of course. We'd blank them out. We'd lose them.”
   “Let's hope so.”
   “Jack?”  Gwen comms.
   “Yeah?”
   “We're at the Electro. Something's happening inside.”
   “Let's go.”

Gwen hammers on the doors of the Electro as Ianto and Jack with Jonathan arrive. 
   “Come on.” Gwen hears the sound of a piano playing.  “Do you hear that?” 
   “Maybe it's my mam and dad.”
   “Would they lock themselves in?”
   “No.” He fumbles for a set of keys, Jack unlocks the doors.
   “Please let them be ok, please.”
Jack forcibly pushes open double doors and the second set of doors as he quickly strides through the foyer followed by Gwen, Owen, Jonathan and Ianto. 
   “Mam? Dad?”  Jonathan shouts.
   “Take it easy.”  Owen calms.

The team head upstairs to the auditorium where they find Dave and Faith sitting staring at the screen, their last breath taken. 
  
   “What's going on? Mum?”
   “No, Jonathan.”
   “Mam! Dad! What's happened? Please. Don't die, please. Speak to me.”  Gwen reaches a hand down to him. “No, leave me alone.” He snarls.
   “They've been frozen in place. A circus needs an audience.” Ianto says.
Suddenly circus music begins to play and the curtains open. 
   “Get him out of here.” Jack instructs.
   “Jonathan, come on.”
   “Leave me alone.”
   “Jonathan.”
He’s dragged out by Gwen and Owen.
   “Owen, find out who's upstairs.” Jack calls as they leave. 
The lights flicker on, the screen lights up, the circus folk are performing onscreen.
   “The same pictures as before.”
Owen heads upstairs to the Projector room, gun drawn. He tries each door along the way.   Downstairs, The Great Stromboli lays down his weights as Jack starts filming and steps out of the screen, going from black and white film, to present day colour. 
   “Jack.”
Pearl walks towards the stage to greet the strongman.
   “They're coming through.”
The fire jugglers are next, followed by the clowns and the Tattooed Man.

Outside the locked Projector room door…
   “Open up!”

In the auditorium…

   “We've done it. We're together again. This place is ours. It belongs to us. This whole city belongs to us!” Pearl says to her family of circus folk.  She sees Ianto and Jack leave, still filming.  Her smile fades.

Owen pounds his gun against the Projector room door.  The Ghostmaker unlocks the door and steps out, and presses his hand against Owen’s face.  Owen’s mouth is forced open.
   “What are you? There's not a breath in your poor, sad body. You're no use to me.”
With the silver flask gripped tightly in his hand, the ghostmaker heads for the exit. Ianto and Gwen are close on his heels.
   “The flask, he's got it!” Ianto shouts.  Gwen runs at the Ghostmaker.  He makes a grab at her, to take her last breath, keeping the silver flask out of her grasp.  Ianto snatches it from his hand and heads out of the door. 
   “I've got it!”
   “Gwen, are you all right?” Jack asks.
   “Oh! Yeah.”
   “Are you ok?”
   “Yes.”
   “Owen, look after the family.”
Inside the auditorium, the circus folk start walking up the centre aisle towards their two members of the audience.

Ianto tears across the street towards the warehouse flat, he glances around but sees nobody.  As he places one foot on the steps, a deathly hand grips his shoulder.  He yells out losing his grip on the flask. The Ghostmaker, triumphant in his quarry, carries the flask up the steps of the warehouse.  Jack is still filming him as he reaches the top.
Defiantly, the Ghostmaker uncorks the flask.
   “NO, PLEASE!”  Ianto begs. 
The Ghostmaker throws the flask.  Jack opens the back of the camera.
The flask empties out the last breaths of its victims.
   “If their breaths escape the flask, all the victims will die.”  Ianto exclaims.
 and pulls out the reel of film. 
 Jack exposes the film to sunlight and the Ghostmaker vanishes, followed by the recent arrivals in the auditorium and finally Pearl, screaming.
   “Quick, we could lose them forever.”  Jack says. 
Ianto catches the flask, placing his hand immediately over the top.  The ‘ghosts’ at the open air pool disappear.

In the Emergency room at the hospital…

The two catatonic women sit up and gasp, before falling back onto the beds.
   “They're flat lining. Call the crash team.”

Outside the warehouse, Ianto holds the flask to his ear.
   “One. I think we saved just one. I hear it, Jack. I heard it. Something inside calling out to me.”
Gwen finds and places the stopper back onto the bottle.
   “Ok. So we've managed to save one, but which one?”

In the hospital corridor…
  
   “There was nothing we could do. They all died so suddenly. Except this poor little soul.”  The nurse tells Jack and Ianto as she pushes the door open to the Emergency room. It’s the young boy from the car.
   “I suppose he'll be next to go.”
Jack strides over to the bed to search for a pulse on the boy.
   “What are you doing?”
   “I need your help.” He tells the nurse.
   “What is that thing?”
   “Please. Just trust me. Give me a hand.”
Jack picks up the young boy.
   “Careful.”
   “Hold his head.”
Jack pops the cork on the flask and holds it near the boy’s mouth. 
   “What's in there?”
   “Something that belongs to him. His last breath. His life.”
His last breath leaves the flask and enters his body.  The boy begins to gasp and cough.
   “What have you done to him?” “
   “It worked.”
   “Welcome back.” Jack smiles.
Ianto sniffs, close to tears.

In Jack’s office the day after…

   “Those reels of film in Jonathan's workroom.”
   “I took them out, destroyed them. Let's hope that's an end to it.”
   “What worries me are all those long lost pieces of film tucked away in dusty cellars, hidden in lofts. The Night Travellers could still be there somewhere, just waiting.”
Ianto hands Jack the flask before leaving the room.

At a local car boot sale, a man picks up a can of film with the same pattern on the tin as on the flask. 
   “How much is this?”

Jack puts the flask in his safe. 

The son of the man drops the can of film and some of the frames are visible. 

Jack briefly hears the sound of circus music.




Next month….

Adrift




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