Secret of Wailau
“Be careful. It’s gonna get really hot” the Doctor warned.
Piper wasn’t feeling too sure about this plan. The Doctor directed the Tardis inside of Molokai’s eastern volcano, which in present day, was known as “Wailau,” after the Wailau Valley.
“You know, I thought of you were to enter a volcano, you’d simply…incinderate!” Piper exclaimed, “Isn’t this a bit…I don’t know, dangerous?”
“Oh don’t be silly, Piper! Simply depends on how hot the lava is. But just in case…don’t get too close.”
“Yes, that makes me very confident” Piper muttered.
The inside of the mountain was sweltering. Approximately ten seconds inside Wailau and Piper was already drowning in sweat. But she kept her hand clenched with her uncle’s as they trekked deeper inside. Surprisingly, the lava tide was low. Only a few puddles scattered about, and the rest were piles of razor sharp rocks.
“So, what are we looking for again?” Piper panted.
“I scanned for signs of this volcano possibly being Vragmen, but the results are inconclusive. Something is fishy about this.”
The Doctor pulled out his sonic screwdriver and began scanning their surroundings. Piper looked around, trying everything to ignore the near unbearable boiling.
The first warnings signs Piper noticed, was that there were a lot of stones that were shaped peculiarly like plants, littering all about the ground. Each one looked as if they were crafted by an intelligent individual. There was no possibility stone formed naturally that way. Next, Piper noticed a shuffling of rocks, and she jumped. The Doctor seemed to be unphased. Finally, the last observation made Piper pause. She noticed two glowing holes, and a horizontal glowing slit that looked a little too close together to be a coincidence. She was going to dismiss it as just her imagination, until it blinked. Piper pulled the Doctor’s hand back, which caused him to stumble. He glanced at her with a rather innocent-puzzled face.
“What?” he asked.
Pipe said nothing, only gesturing to what she was seeing. Once the Doctor zeroed in on what she saw, his face turned cold.
The face suddenly pulled forward from out of the wall. Piper jumped again, and this time, she clung closer to the Doctor. The Doctor straightened defensively, clenching his screwdriver tighter. What came out of the wall, was a twenty foot tall rock giant. But instead of being stocky with razor sharp edges, the stacks of rock that formed were more smooth edged, black, round, and smooth, like shape of cold, flowing lava. It was like a living sculpture.
The figure raised its hand.
“Fear not, Doctor” it said in a low, angelic, feminine voice.
Piper’s shoulders loosened a little. The Doctor remained on guard.
“I am Leilani E Kali Ana,” the figure continued, “I dwell in this volcano.”
“How do you know my name?” Inquired the Doctor.
“You are a legend on my world. I could hear your ship come down from the sky.”
“You’re…” Piper finally spoke, “You’re not Vragmen.”
The stone woman chuckled, sheepishly.
“No, I am not,” she replied.
Suddenly, the Doctor snapped his finger.
“Of course!” he exclaimed, “You’re not Vragmen, you’re Pyrovile!”
“Pyrovile? You mean from Pyrovillia?” Piper implied, “The humanoids composed of pure rock and fire?”
The Doctor nodded.
“Brilliant! Oh, that’s incredible!” Piper cried excitingly, “I’ve never seen one before! You’re so beautiful! I’ve never imagined a female Pyrovile to be so stunning! And-!”
Then, she paused, and grew puzzled.
“You, ma’am, are galaxies away from Pyrovillia! How in the world did you end up here!?”
Leilani frowned. Deep sorrow clouded her face.
“Pyrovillia is no more. It has vanished” she responded simply.
“Vanished? How can it just vanish, how do you lose a planet?” The Doctor observed.
Leilani didn’t answer. Instead she continued with:
“I managed to escape on a ship with others. But it spun out of control. In the commotion, I was separated from them, and I crashed onto this island. Initially, I was barely clinging to life, however in this volcano, I survived.”
Leilani slowly began to pace. Piper observed and admired the glowing, hand-carved flora that adorned the Pyrovile’s head like a Polynesian flower crown.
“I’ve lived in this volcano for hundreds of years in isolation and loneliness, living in fear I may be the last of my own kind. Then, Erek was born.”
“I met him once, when this volcano erupted, and lava and ash boiled onto the land. It was the first time I could cross onto the land freely, since I could disintegrate if I touched the water. It was beautiful. The land untouched by the fire was covered in green with biological life of all colors. It was truly a sight to behold. I saw Erek from down below the sea. Even though he was miles below, he could see me, and hear my voice, and I could hear his. He responded to the songs sung on my home world, and that is how we communicated. We talked for weeks as the mountain erupted. But when it was time for the lava to dissipate, and the land to begin a new cycle, I had to return. He vowed that he would grow as tall as my mountain, and we would be together forever. He could create lava tubes from below the island, hot and dry enough that I could cross and be with him. Finally, I wouldn’t be alone. But…”
Leilani’s voice trailed off. She grew concerned.
“But a volcano can take hundreds of years to evolve” The Doctor finished.
Leilani looked at him.
“Hundreds of those years past, and he grew impatient. He has decided to climb at a faster rate than he is allowed. I want to tell him to stop, spare the lives of these people, but I cannot call to him.”
Leilani motioned to the mountain around them.
“My very safe haven is my prison. I am helpless here. I can only watch, hopeless as my love destroys this beautiful people, whom I have listened and learned intently their resplendent songs, all because of me.”
“No,” Piper objected, shifting her weight and slowly clenching her fists, “No we won’t let that happen!”
She looked straight into the Pyrovile’s eyes.
“I know a little of what that’s like: being alone. Not only that, but to have lost your home, all your friends and family taken from you. And to lose the one thing that could restore fellowship with the outside world, I won’t have it! We can help!”
She glanced at her uncle.
“Can’t we, Uncle Doctor?”
The Doctor was staring at her, with a glimpse of both sorrow and joy in his complexion. He smiled. They all understood what isolation felt like. And none would understand it more than the Doctor.
“Of course we will,” The Doctor responded, then added with an excited jitter, “And I know just what to do.”