Chapter 8

As she'd been force-marched along the tunnels for the past quarter hour, if felt to Mari like she was some two-legged livestock being led to an abattoir. She shuddered involuntarily at the images that thought had awakened inside her mind.

The Dalek with the light stopped so abruptly that Mari nearly walked into it. She had to take a quick step back as it swiveled about to face its mate.



Abruptly, the two Daleks began to quiver with either excitement or fear. Mari wasn't sure which it was, but anything that slowed her progress to her doom was a welcome respite.

"UNAUTHORIZED INTRUDERS DETECTED!" Spoke the first Dalek shortly, as if offended by the very notion.

The second Dalek began waving its gun arm about. It virtually screamed, "ALERT! ALERT! IT IS THE DOC-TOR!"

Right at that moment, the two time travelers materialized practically right under the eyestalks of the two Daleks. On seeing them there, Clara gasped and paled slightly. The Doctor merely raised his eyebrows and flashed them a wry grin. Almost as if he'd known they'd be there, all along.

"Whoops." The Doctor whispered to Clara. "I think we've overshot our gate."

If Daleks had mouths on the outside of their casings, these two would have had theirs hanging on the floor. The two Daleks stood frozen to the spot, their gun arms trembling. They seemed to almost be dithering. The pair were unsure whether to make the Doctor a prisoner or to shoot him outright. So they deferred to their commander, whom was in another part of the cavern.

"You know Clara, I have to say it's such a comfort to see a familiar enemy in a strange place. Correction." he amended, eyeing the Dalek's uniform outer casings, "Not so much a comfort, as a tedious bore. Sticking to the Club Med tans are we, boys? I really think I liked it better when you resembled a packet of Skittles. You won't get to fashion week with that look."

"DOC-TOR!" The first Dalek practically spluttered out the name.

Yep." He virtually bragged, "That's me. The ol' Oncoming Storm himself. I'm afraid I don't have time for autographs, though. You know how these holiday packages are. Everything on a timed schedule. Tell me, is this the right queue for the night train to Paris? No? Right then, ta. Clara...?"

"Yeah. I think I know this bit, Doctor. You're going to tell me to run." She told him dryly.

Without further ado, she spun about and quickly bolted around the nearest corner

"How do you know I wasn't going to say, 'look out behind you'?" He called after her, as he whisked off his purple coat and threw it over the first Dalek's eye stalk.

It whirled about, screaming its distress, "CAN'T SEE! CAN'T SEEEEEE—!"

The Doctor paused for a split second before following her, his fascinated and delighted gaze riveted on the second Dalek.

Practically shivering with delight he said, "Oooh! Glow-in-the-dark Daleks. That's new!"

Then his sonic screwdriver was whirring, which sent the lights on the second Dalek exploding. It screamed in protest like a spoiled brat being denied a sweet. Mari suddenly felt her arm being jerked as the Doctor grabbed hold of her and took her with him.

"Wait!" She cried out to him as she struggled to keep up. "Stop!"

"Sorry. Not an option, I'm afraid. We'll have to run. This way!" The Doctor replied with what she thought was an entirely out-of-place cheekiness.

Cringing, Mari decided that her fate was now in the hands of a certified nutjob. Albeit, at least this one didn't have a gun pointed at her. Given the two choices, she decided to err on the side of escaping rather than dying.

" can you see where we're going?" Mari asked, virtually shuddering at the thought of those occasional holes in the floor, lurking in the profound darkness of the tunnels.

"Because my eyes are just a bit better than the average human." He panted as he ran, "And I have this, of course." He said, holding out a small pen torch that he'd slipped out of his pocket.

"Better than what? Pardon me for saying so at a time like this, but I think your kid's meal may be lacking its little bag of chips."

"It's also missing the free toy, but never mind." Clara interjected as she dropped back to run alongside the Doctor.

"Oy! I do so have all my toys. Though maybe a few of the chips..." The Doctor said to himself as he sprinted onward.

"Listen. Just do as he says and we may actually live through this."

"I don't seem to have much choice, do I?" Mari conceded.

"There's always a choice. It's making the right one that's hard. Or maybe just dumb luck. I'm Clara, by the way." She said as she dropped back to run beside the Doctor.

Not far behind them, they could hear the screeching echoes of the two Daleks rebounding off the musty tunnel walls.


"Who are you, anyway? Are you another archeologist?" Mari quizzed him as they continued to run.

"I'm the Doctor."

"Doctor who?" Was Mari's puzzled response.

"Just...the Doctor."

"That's an odd choice for a name."

"My parents wanted me to be a veterinarian. I wanted to be a male stripper. Still, I suppose calling myself 'the Stripper' might have been a bit awkward in er—certain situations. Though I would have had a very cool theme song to play in the shower."

Shoving the torch in his mouth and grabbing Clara by the hand, the Doctor abruptly skidded to a halt.

"Whoaf!" He yelped at the two women as he quickly backpedaled, physically jerking them all backwards.

Removing the torch from his mouth and shining it downward he said, "Mind the gap! And trust me. That's one helluva' gap!" The Doctor said, staring downward.

There, just centimeters in front of them, was an enormous hole in the tunnel. It appeared to be some ancient cave-in that had swallowed up an entire five meter section of the floor.


The voice of the commander screamed through a hidden speaker in the wall. The Doctor and two women couldn't help but hear it. The echo of its demand came barreling down the tunnel like a political fanatic screaming into a megaphone. Since their pursuers were drawing ever closer, they all could hear the reply, as well.



"AND THE OTHER PRISONERS?" The first Dalek queried.

"THEY ARE OF NO USE TO US. EXTERMINATE THEM!" Ordered the commander.

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