Sometime Never...
by Justin Richards

Publisher: BBC
ISBN: 0 563 48611 2


    In the swirling maelstrom of the Time Vortex, The Council of Eight maps out every moment in history and takes drastic measures to ensure it follows their predictions. But there is one elemental force that defies prediction, that fails to adhere to the laws of time and space... A rogue element that could destroy their plans merely by existing.


    Fitz and Trix.

    Jo Grant makes a cameo appearance on page 255.

    Pg 27 The Tower of London, August 1485.

    Pg 27 The Doctor has already deposited Fitz in January 2004, although we (and Trix) didn't see it happen.

    Pg 39 South-eastern France, 17 May 1837.

    Pg 53 Italy, 1564.

    Pg 62 New York, July 2002 (as page 95 reveals), although we don't witness the TARDIS land.

    Pg 70 In the prince's bedroom, the Tower of London, 1485.

    Pg 87 London, 2001 (the article is almost published; see page 71), offscreen.

    Pg 124 The back of the ground floor of the Institute of Anthropology, London, January 31 2004.

    Pg 268 The Institute of Anthropology, 2004.

    The Ancestor Cell, Father Time, The Slow Empire, The Adventuress of Henrietta Street, Time Zero and Timeless are the essentials. But most of the books in between would help too. Also Bullet Time, Heritage, Loving the Alien and Wolfsbane. This is the big one.

    Pg 8 "'Unless it was a Rogue Element, of course,' Duvar suggested. 'You see Rogue Elements everywhere,' Trilon snapped impatiently." This paraphrasing of The Five Doctors suggests that the eight members of the Council of Eight are based on the personalities of the eight Doctors. The ending reinforces this.

    Pg 11 "She had been through a lot to get that diamond, Fitz thought. They all had." Emotional Chemistry.

    Pg 13 "He thought back to the body stuffed with crystals - to the birth of the universe, the Big Bang." Timeless.

    Pg 15 "Remember how we drove out the creatures that seemed to resent our presence here and sent them scurrying into real space-time." These creatures were the vortex wraiths, and they fled the vortex in The Slow Empire.

    Pg 20 "And don't start going on at us about bumble bees again" The third Doctor did this in The Daemons.

    "'But it also looks like a web, don't you think?' [...] 'Could probably persuade the TARDIS to do something similar,' he added, frowning as if stirring some deeply forgotten memory." Possibly The Creature from the Pit.

    Pg 21 "Now that the universes are back together, in a single predictable and predicted timeline, he knows his decision can affect... everything." Timeless.

    Pgs 64-65 "The first time they had met was by chance, in the British Museum while the Doctor was examining the page of a journal." Timeless.

    Pg 73 "Trix could recall the sound of the shot. The sight of Sabbath's hand dripping red and the Doctor giving him a handkerchief to bind it." This occurred in Time Zero (pg 234) and the handkerchief was seen on page 8 of Timeless.

    Pg 91 "Insignificant druggie to eco-campaigner in one easy lesson." Sam Jones. Her drug addiction was mentioned in Alien Bodies, Unnatural History and Interference.

    Pg 121 "Only Kalicum is unaccounted for" Timeless.

    Pg 124 Reference to the fault locator (The Daleks et al).

    Pg 131 "The man had a dark, pointed beard cut close to the shape of his face that made him look saturnine and sinister. For some reason the Doctor immediately took against him. He was sure it was the beard that did it." The Master.

    Pg 154 "He told me about Melanie, and he pointed to a whole row of twisted, broken hourglasses." Heritage.

    "And he showed me an hourglass called Jones that he said 'died of an overdose' and another called Harry who might have been killed by a wolf, although that was not yet certain." Sam Jones, Alien Bodies, Unnatural History and Interference. Harry's possible death is a reference to the end of Wolfsbane.

    Pgs 154-155 "This one was actually two hourglasses fused together, the one seeming to grow out of the other. [...] 'This is what happens when you try to manipulate a life in one universe without first closing off the others [...] Alas, poor Dorothy'" One of Ace's deaths was in Loving the Alien, another is probably a reference to the comic strip Ground Zero.

    Pg 157 "Instead, his heart rejected the glass, which withered and blackened and broke. Just as his heart did." The Adventuress of Henrietta Street. "The moment we took that decision, his heart grew back, stronger than before." Camera Obscura.

    Pg 170 "I shudder to think what he got up to - and into - when I left him alone for a century." The Ancestor Cell and the Earth arc, especially Father Time.

    Pg 171 "'But there was a terribly good reason for it at the time.' He frowned. 'I think.'" Fitz's missing memories about The Ancestor Cell were first mentioned in Escape Velocity and will resurface in the next book, Halflife.

    "I looked after her when her parents met with... an accident." Father Time.

    "She's Empress of somewhere or other now, I believe." Father Time.

    Pg 177 "I recognise you this time by the company you keep." Sabbath failed to recognise Trix when she was disguised in Timeless.

    "A slight adjustment may be needed to the technology my former associate Kalicum was so kind to provide before he departed." Timeless.

    Pg 182 "I think that collapsing the timelines into a single universe was not only wrong, but was purposefully wrong." Timeless.

    Pgs 183-187 "In 1762 when I was just was twenty-one years old, I was initiated into the Service." We get a potted history of Sabbath's origins here, explaining on what was told in The Adventuress of Henrietta Street. See also The Domino Effect and Timeless.

    Pg 185 "They said that he was called 'The Doctor' and that he was a Rogue Element. They used the word, or I took them to, as in 'elemental'." The Adventuress of Henrietta Street

    Pg 186 "With the Time Vortex no longer regimented [...] creatures were fleeing it." The Adventuress of Henrietta Street, The Slow Empire.

    "Hence my mission as Mistletoe." Anachrophobia.

    "They said they were from the future and that I was to help them save the past - my present. They told me of the crystalline technology that had transformed them [...] But you and I know that was not the case." Sabbath believed this story in Timeless (pg 238).

    Pg 187 "That is why they have collapsed the multiverse into a single timeline, so that this event is inescapable and inevitable." Timeless.

    Pg 190 "Though I was very impressed with the head in a bag dumped in the water stuff, I'd rather keep well away from him." The Advneturess of Henrietta Street.

    Pg 193 "As the universe ends, there are three people watching: Ashtex, Korsann and Singleton." This parallels the three people watching the beginning of the universe on page 11 of Timeless.

    Pg 194 "This is Admiral-Commander Diljento of the Solarii fleet" Uncertain reference.

    "They think that the transduction barriers will protect us in here" The Invasion of Time.

    Pg 208 "He reached up and tugged at the lapels of his jacket with both hands, symmetrical, reminding Trix for a moment - for some reason - of the Doctor." Singleton is also described as having white hair receding from a high forehead on page 196, so he's either meant to be the first Doctor or (more likely) Council member Soul, based on the events at the end of this novel.

    Pg 219 "Did you sort out the Factions and the Houses, unite the Empire and rule beneficently?" The reference to Factions and Houses is likely a reference to the Faction Paradox series. Faction Paradox were first seen in Alien Bodies.

    Pg 229 "I am Alpha and Omega" The star-killer later gets transformed into a glass hand (pg 261) and then leaves with Soul (pg 266), who becomes the first Doctor (pg 273), making this the Hand of Omega. "We shall become lords of Time itself and outsit eternity" The Time Lords, The Ark in Space.

    Pg 230 "A third was quite frankly a mess. That was the one that had drawn Fitz's attention first - woodlike struts pieced together to hold the nondescript glass bowls. Seeing his own name etched into the 'woodwork' had made Fitz blink." Fitz's timeline was fractured by being remembered in Interference, where his original self became Father Kreiner (Dead Romance, The Ancestor Cell).

    Pg 231 "It was constructed from strips of what might be iron" Iron for Sabbath suggests the Jonah, introduced in The Adventuress of Henrietta Street.

    Pg 236 "'The murder of a colonist here, the shooting and dumping in the Thames - appropriately enough - of a young girl there. A political activist gunned down while giving a speech. An investigative journalist following up a dangerous story in Hong Kong... Even,' and this seemed to amuse him, 'an attack by a werewolf in your own TARDIS, though there were certain complications with that one too, I have to say.'" Mel, in Heritage. Ace in Loving the Alien. Sam Jones (and see The Gallifrey Chronicles). Sarah Jane Smith in Bullet Time. Harry (and possibly Sarah) at the end of Wolfsbane.

    Pg 239 "Her hair was pure white, and for a moment as the skin on her face tightened in death, she looked like a young girl asleep in the snow." Father Time.

    Pg 243 "On a cold morning in 1762." The Adventuress of Henrietta Street.

    Pg 244 "Juliette was never supposed to leave London with you in the Jonah. Maybe she was never supposed to survive. They couldn't allow you the distraction, the influence she might have exerted over you. So, they took her away." This explains why Juliette was never mentioned after leaving with Sabbath in The Adventuress of Henrietta Street.

    Pg 247 "He almost pulled his handkerchief out to wipe his brow. Almost. It was a temptation to wave Sabbath's dried blood in his face" Sabbath was shot in Time Zero (pg 234) and the Doctor handed him this handkerchief.

    Pg 254 "You can't put the universes back in the bottle." Dead Romance, Interference and The Ancestor Cell.

    Pg 266 "Somewhere beyond that, a spherical black eye, its iris a white disc, swung over the bank of controls it was monitoring." This black eye was mentioned in The Adventuress of Henrietta Street, History 101, The Domino Effect and will be resolved in The Gallifrey Chronicles.

    Pg 270 "Another surrogate auntie?" This is a reference to Anji, from the end of Timeless.

    There is a room in the TARDIS where the Doctor never goes... He is in there now. Talking to an old friend - a face on a screen; wise and whimsical with hard eyes and a beard flecked with grey." Likely the Master's consciousness from The Telemovie, later to be seen housed in a robotic body in Scream of the Shalka.

    Pg 271 "The tea will be getting cold." Survival.

    Pg 274 "A police telephone box, in the corner of a junkyard at the end of a dark lane at the start of a long journey..." An Unearthly Child. It's not clear whether this is supposed to be the lead-in to the TV series, creating a time loop in the Doctor's life, or an alternate universe. In either case, Soul has absorbed some of the Doctor's memories and Zezanne is a similar name to Susan and she is the Doctor's granddaughter, even if she isn't Soul's.

    Pg 64 Correll is from Time Zero.

    Pg 169 Miranda, the Doctor's daughter, from Father Time.

    Pg 177 Sabbath.

    Pg 217 Sabbath's apes and the Jonah.

    Pg 255 Cliff Jones.

    Soul, Zezanne, Fleetward, Prince Richard, Prince Edward.


    1. Pg 64 "Correll was examining the bigest piece, the long section that the Doctor had found when Louis Vosgues was killed." Except that the piece found when Vosgues was killed was "a short, subby length of shaped crystal (pg 46). The piece that he found when the creature interrupted the blacksmith's train of thought was "just over a foot long" (pg 55).
    2. Pg 95 "The Doctor blew on his fingernails and polished then on his lapel." Polished them, surely?
    3. Pg 106 "Surelyuthe hall light was not on when he left that morning" Huh?
    4. Pg 231 "A card, plain white, written on it: 'The Doctor'. Behind the card, was an hourglass" Except that not only did the Doctor have no hourglass - "Two words in dark crystal in place of an hourglass: The Doctor" (pg 120) - Octan explicitly stated that the Council could not afford to try creating a new hourglass for the Doctor and that this decision allowed the Doctor's second heart to grow back (pg 157). And the Council's entire existence relies on the fact that their predictions are never wrong. So has the Doctor's new heart withered and died while we weren't looking?

    PLUGGING THE HOLES [Fan-wank theorizing of how to fix continuity cock-ups]

    1. Despite being a genius, the Doctor is misremembering the order in which two things happened to him very recently.
    2. The Doctor blows on his fingernails and then immediately polishes his lapel with his other hand.
    3. Seeing the hall light on terrifies Fleetward, so he stumbles over his words.
    4. The Doctor created this hourglass, just to put a spanner in the Council's predictions.

    Pg 4 A mismatched ape, with one arm human, one from an orang-utan, legs of an ape, the head of a Neanderthal but with a reptillian jaw and a body covered with pustules. It's originally from the same specias as Sabbath's apes (pg 217), but has been pushed through evolution at different rates due to the effects of riding the Time Winds (p72).

    Pg 186 The Council are made up of eight crystal races.

    Pg 196 A reptillian that resembles a small dinosaur, swathed in green mist, with an enormous jaw and sharp teeth.

    Pg 5 Africa, 1588 (pgs 4/6).

    Pg 6 Britain, 1588.

    Pg 18 A Menger Sponge within the time vortex.

    Pg 27 The Tower of London, August 1485 (page 26).

    Pg 29 London (page 26), 31 January 2004.

    Pg 39 South-eastern France, 17 May 1837.

    Pg 53 Italy, 1564.

    Pg 62 New York, 2002 (as page 95 reveals).

    Pg 87 London, 2001 (the article is almost published; see page 71).

    Pg 105 London, early January 2004 (it's three weeks to the opening, as pg 106 specifies).

    Pg 193 A circular space station at the end of the universe.

    IN SUMMARY - Robert Smith?
    At long, long last, the arc from hell is over. And it ends with a whimper, not a bang, in the most astonishing example of Justin Richards "writing up his notes" substituting for an actual novel. It's not so much that Sometime Never... is bad - some of it is quite good, especially the epilogue - it's just that after all this buildup the end result is completely perfunctory. Justin Richards, the last man standing who still thought all this alternate universe, Sabbath etc malarkey was worthwhile, has finally run out of steam, some years after the rest of us did. The enormous, universe-shaking conclusion to the epic EDA arc is revealed to be... a bunch of old men sitting around a table. That says it all, really.