The Doctor was silent for a long time after Davros had made his offer.<\p>
“I was right, then,” she said. “You never understood who I really was.”
“An indulgence. Forgive me. It is foolish, I know, to gamble on so tiny a chance.”
“No,” said the Doctor. “No, it never is.”
“The way forward will be more challenging without you,” said Davros, “But I have made my preparations. If the Earth cannot have its hero,” he smiled, “it may have to settle for another.”
“You?” said the Doctor. “Nobody’s going to listen to you! It’s a media culture, and you’re just a husk in a chair!”
“How quick you are to fall back to my appearance,” said Davros. “But you are right, of course. Strength of mind should come with strength in the body. And I am old, now, and weak. But it’s not me who will be going there, Doctor. Not like this, anyway,” he grinned. “Not with this daft old face.”
The Doctor’s face was ash as she finally understood.
”The Earth has been crying out for change,” said Davros. “Perhaps it is not alone. It is past time, I think, that I should be renewed. To take another cue from you. To regenerate.”
Softly against the fire of the sunset, the remaining hand of Davros began to glow.
“NO!” said the Doctor. “You can’t do that! You’re not one of the people who can do that!”
“Oh, I could offer you an explanation!” said Davros with a face that was glowing too. “It was not such a complex matter, in the end. Like so often, it was you that gave me the spark. None of this would be possible, had you not shown the way.”
“YOU’LL NEVER WIN!” shouted the Doctor. “If you think the Earth’ll just roll over to you then you know even less about it than you do about me”–
“Oh, Doctor. I do respect your courage! And I have enjoyed our talks, over the years. But I think, if we were honest, we always knew– which of us would win in the end.”
The whole of his body was glowing now, every part of it that had not been burned away. The few parts of him that remained were pulsing and wiggling, preparing to knit themselves into something new.
“Your story is old,” he said, anger rising as orange surged through his skin, “BUT MINE! IS OLDER! SAFETY, AND PLENTITUTE! A WORLD THAT BELONGS TO ONE’S OWN! MY TALE! WILL BE TOLD! IN THEIR FUTURE! MY STORY! WILL LAST! FOR AN AGE!”
“I WILL BRING PEACE!” he roared as light flashed from the thing in the sky.
I WILL BRING ORDER!” he yelled as the windows of the theatre blew in.
“AND I! WILL BE! THE SAVIOUR OF HUMANITY!”
The man and the room exploded into flame.