Bounty

by Gideon Jacob [Reviews - 1]

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“I suggest you take that gun away from my head, young man,” the Doctor said. “They tend to be hazardous for one’s health.”
“Shut up,” the man replied. He was dressed in a smart grey suit with a purple silk tie. “I am the one doing the talking here.”
“Hey, get away from him!” Alan shouted from inside the Tardis. She started to run towards them.
“One more step and I’ll blow the Doctor’s head clean off,” the man said without looking away from the Doctor.
“May I suggest you stay where you are Alana, there’s a good girl,” the Doctor commented.

“Inside the Tardis,” the man said threateningly, ushering the Doctor back inside the time machine. Once inside the man took in his surroundings and gestured for the Doctor and Alana to stand with their backs to the console. Alana complied whereas the Doctor ignored him.
“I am going to ask you again to put away your weapon,” he said.
“I don’t think you’re in any position to be making demands,” the man replied.
“Actually inside my Tardis I am boss and I think you will find your gun won’t work so long as you intend to kill anybody with it.”
“Really?” the man said disbelievingly.

“Yes. You see the Tardis is partly telepathic, it gets inside your head and finds out what you’re thinking. If you intend to kill me by shooting me the gun simply won’t work. So please put it away.” The man slowly, unsurely, lowered the gun and inspected it to see if the Doctor was telling the truth.
“Who are you anyway?” Alana asked. “I mean you come marching in here ordering us about and brandishing guns about like a madman, so I think we are owed some explanation.”
“I agree,” the Doctor said. The man looked at them both and smiled.
“I was never really going to shoot either of you. In fact I’m here to protect you. My name is Farol Hanson, Galactic Secret Service.”

“What?” Alana asked, taken aback by this revelation.
“The Galactic Secret Service,” the Doctor repeated with amazement. “I haven’t had business with them since my first life, when I was still a young man. Has anything changed? Is Gretel still in charge?”
“He, erm, he died about three hundred years ago Doctor.”
“I see.”
“Hold on, how do you know who we are?” Alana asked. “And I’d like to see some identification please.”

“She’s a manager,” the Doctor told Farol as if it explained everything. Farol pulled a small leather pocketbook out of his jacket and showed it Alana. Inside was a futuristic looking silver badge with Farol’s name and agent number on.
“And I know all about you because when I’m assigned to protect someone I think it usually helps if you know who they are,” Farol said sarcastically.
“Well you’ve done well,” the Doctor said. “To say I’ve only just regenerated recently.”
“But the blue box is unmistakeable Doctor,” Farol replied. The Doctor cleared his throat.
“Indeed. Well, I am afraid to tell you that you are going to have to go back to your superiors and tell them I need no protection.”

“That is out of the question Doctor. I’m coming with you whether you like it or not.”
“I beg your pardon,” the Doctor scoffed. “I have faced some of the most evil creatures this side of the Andromeda galaxy young man. I hardly think one neatly groomed guy in a suit is going to offer me more protection than my own vast intelligence and unique instincts can.”
“That may have been the case Doctor up till now. But you’ve not been around here for a long time.”
“Six hundred and forty three years,” the Doctor said quickly, quite proud of the fact he could remember.
“Well since you’ve been gone the Mafia have moved in,” Farol explained.
“The Mafia?” Alana asked.

“Even the Universe has a Mafia Alana,” the Doctor explained. “I’ve never crossed their paths but they know all about me. They like to think they are the highest authority around now that the Time Lords are…” The Doctor trailed off. He turned to face Alana and smiled. “Except they aren’t. I am.” Alana couldn’t help but smile.
“Well whether you are or not Doctor, people fear the Mafia. Like it or not if the Mafia put a price on someone’s head they usually have that head on their desk within days. And now we’ve caught wind that they’ve put a price on your head.”
“Really?” the Doctor asked in astonishment. “That’s very generous of them. How much am I worth?”
“Five million credits dead, ten million alive,” Farol told him. The Doctor looked insulted.

“Is that all?” he asked.
“It’s the biggest bounty in the Mafia’s history Doctor,” Farol said, not quite able to believe the Doctor had the cheek to be insulted by this.
“I couldn’t care less Mr Hanson,” the Doctor replied. “The point is it isn’t enough. I want to be worth more than a measly ten million credits.” The Doctor turned and started working the controls of the Tardis and it wasn’t long before the column started moving. “Which is exactly why I am going to go and tell them, at least if their base is still in the right place.”
“You’re going to see the Don!” Farol exclaimed unbelievingly.
“Why not?” the Doctor asked.

“They put a price on your head larger than any they ever have put on anyone and you’re going to go straight into the lion’s den? Is he insane?” Farol asked Alana.
“Oh he always does it. You get used to the way he does things surprisingly quickly.”
“I hope you’re not saying I’m predictable Alana because I can always take you home, just like you wanted me to.”
“From what I’ve seen you’re certainly far from being predictable Doctor,” Farol commented. The Doctor smiled.
“Thank you,” he replied.
The column stopped moving and the Tardis slammed to a halt, sending all inside it stumbling.
“I really do need to master this landing thing,” the Doctor said to himself as he brushed past Farol.

“You’re not really going out there? And you want to go with him?” he exclaimed as Alana followed the Doctor, who had paused at the doorway.
“Yes I am going out there,” he said. “So if you want to start doing your job I suggest you come with us.” With that he turned and walked into whatever was waiting for him outside, Alana close behind him. Farol sighed and ran after them.
The Tardis had materialised inside a massive mansion. It was stood in the centre of a giant hallway in front of a large flight of stairs leading to several different floors, the top one of which consisted solely of the Don’s office, fronted by a massive golden and silver door.

The hallway itself was bustling with people, aliens from all over the galaxy. They were coming and going yet no one took any particular notice of the Doctor, his companions or the Tardis, even the few members of the Mafia that were stood about.
“Well to say I’ve got the biggest mark in the Universe hanging over my head not many people seem very bothered to see me,” the Doctor said, almost to himself. He turned to Farol and Alana. “And do you know what that does? Rubs salt in the wound! Come on.” He took off towards the stairs.
As they approached the door it opened up and out came a fairly tall, slim red headed woman. On seeing the Doctor a sly, almost menacing smile spread across her face.
“Well, well,” she said as she approached them. “If it isn’t the legendary Doctor.”

“Finally, someone recognises me,” the Doctor exclaimed.
“Indeed,” the woman replied.
She was wearing a fitted black jacket underneath which was a deep purple shirt. Her trousers were black also and over them were knee high purple boots. She had long nails varnished in deep purple also and she had diamond rings on most of her fingers.
“You are?” the Doctor asked.
“Taimada,” she replied. “Viola Taimada,” she added, holding her hand out as if expecting the Doctor to kiss it. Instead he merely grabbed it roughly and shook it. She quickly snatched her hand away and wiped it on her assistant stood just behind her.
“Nice to meet you,” the Doctor said disdainfully.

“I would say the same Doctor but you keep such, shall we say, common company,” Viola replied, shooting Alana a venomous look.
“I’m sorry, but who are you to call me common?” Alana spat.
“Oh please dear,” Viola replied. “Don’t take it personally. I suppose it’s just my exceptionally high standards. I’m afraid you just don’t meet them.”
“You cow,” Alana replied. Viola looked confused, not used to twenty first century slang.
“I fail to see the relevance of a cow,” she said. “I’m guessing it’s an insult.”
“Well done,” Alana replied with a patronising tone. Viola gave her a very threatening look.

“You would be wise not to anger me little girl,” she said. “So, before you make me do something you’d regret, why don’t you go back into whatever hovel you crawled out of and do whatever it is you poor people do.”
“Can we help you at all?” the Doctor asked before Alana turned this into a fist fight.
“Oh I just wanted to say hello Doctor,” she said. “I recognised you at once. Your face is plastered everywhere, you can hardly get away from it. The Don is infatuated with you.”
“He has good taste,” the Doctor said, smiling.
“Quite,” Viola returned. “I must say you’re smaller than I expected, but I suppose we can’t all exceed other people’s expectations can we.”

“You do think very highly of yourself,” the Doctor said.
“So would you if you were me Doctor.” The Doctor looked blankly back at her “Do you not know who I am?” Viola asked.
“Should I?”
“I am head of the Logician movement my dear Doctor.” The name seemed to awake some deep memory within the Doctor. “You know about the Logicians don’t you Doctor?” The Doctor remained silent. “Well I must be going, but I dare say we will meet again, provided the Mafia don’t kill you any time soon. I’d even go as far as saying I’ve met my match in you.”
“Oh I don’t think so,” the Doctor said.
“No?”

“No. I am far above your level, dear,” the Doctor told her patronisingly. She looked at him venomously.
“We shall see,” she replied. She brushed past him, her assistant shoulder barging the Doctor as they went. She turned at the last minute and the Doctor looked her straight in the eye. “You know some have referred to you as the Lonely God, Doctor,” she said. “Only in legends and myths. I am yet to form an opinion. But bare this in mind Time Lord, even Gods must bow to logic.”
“If you want to take me on Miss Taimada you are very welcome to try. But you bare this in mind. I am the Doctor and I never lose.” She looked at him up and down before turning around and walking off, inspecting the Tardis as she passed it.

“Well she was nice,” Alana said sarcastically.
“Who are the Logicians Doctor?” Farol asked.
“I only met them once, very briefly. They tried to reawaken the Cyber-Men on Telos, to help them conquer Earth. I stopped them, but that was nine lifetimes ago. Now come along.” The Doctor turned and, without knocking, stormed right into the Don’s office.
Inside it appeared to be an exact replica of the Oval Office in the White House, only without the rich blue carpet and American flags. The room was filled with men, of varying races, dressed in suits with the Don, a burly human male, sat behind the desk. On entering the Doctor had caused a pause in whatever conversation was going on. The Mafia men went to draw their guns only to withdraw with a gesture from the Don. One did, however, frisk Farol and the Doctor and took away the Doctor’s sonic screwdriver and packet of jelly babies along with Farol’s gun.

“I must say Doctor, you are either very brave or very foolish,” the Don said in a hoarse voice. He seemed to be a stereo typical Mafia Don in every way. “What brings you to my office?”
“I heard you put a price on my head,” the Doctor replied.
“I guess you came here to beg me to remove it,” the Don guessed.
“Oh quite contrary,” the Doctor replied. “I came here to make you raise it.” The Don looked confused. “Five million dead? I’m worth much more. When I heard you’d put a price on my head I wasn’t surprised to be honest, it’s been a long time coming, but I was most upset when I heard you rated me so cheaply.”

“You do realise Doctor I could kill you now and not have to pay anyone anything,” the Don told him.
“Yes, but you won’t,” the Doctor replied.
“You seem very sure of yourself,” a broad shouldered, blue skinned alien said.
“That’s because when you’re me you get used to being right,” the Doctor replied smugly. “Now raise the price on my head or I will bring down your entire Mafia.” The Doctor looked the Don dead in the eye and a very tense moment passed.
“You bring down my entire Mafia?” the Don asked. “Many men have tried and more men have failed.”
“Well those men aren’t me,” the Doctor replied. “And as I told Miss Taimada just outside, I’m the Doctor and I always win.”

“I know who you are,” the Don replied. “And I don’t care whether you are a tinker, tenor, doctor or spy the point is you are not leaving this building alive.”
“A strong claim,” the Doctor replied. “I dare you to try and take me on.” The Don went to say something but the Doctor interrupted him. “I have stared death in the face so many times I lost count a hundred years ago. Don’t think that any threat you make will intimidate me because I guarantee you, cross me and by god I will take you down.”
“What with Doctor?” the Don asked. “You have no weapons and no means of escape.”

“I don’t use weapons,” the Doctor said back. He smiled. “I don’t need them. And as for having no means of escape, if there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years it is to always have an escape route.” The Doctor pulled off the small circular badge pinned to his velvet jacket and pressed the central black rock.
Suddenly a gust of wind began to blow as the Tardis slowly materialised around the Doctor, Alana, Farol and the Mafia man with their confiscated items. The others opened fire but found themselves too slow as the bullets ricocheted off of the Tardis exterior.
Inside Farol took the man out before any gun could be drawn. He knocked the guy out with a single punch and tossed the Doctor his jelly babies and sonic screwdriver.

“What is that?” Alana asked, referring to the tiny badge.
“A sort of remote control,” the Doctor replied, pinning it back on his jacket. “Only works twice though. I designed it work on the same principal as the sonic screwdriver, only it isn’t as versatile. It can only call the Tardis you see, but that can be very useful in a sticky situation.”
“You do realise they could just run in here!” Farol shouted, running towards the door.
“Without a Tardis key the whole Roman Empire couldn’t get inside. I remember Julius getting very angry,” the Doctor replied. “Don’t worry they can’t get inside.”
“What do we do now?” Alana asked.

“Well first we need to get rid of him,” Farol said. The Doctor pressed several controls and the unconscious body was teleported to the outside. “OK, now what?” Farol said.
“Well we need to watch to see if the Don sees fit to raise my bounty or not.”
“And if he doesn’t?” Alana asked.
“Then I carry out my threat. We bring down the Mafia.”
“How do you suggest we do that then?” Farol asked.
“One thing at a time Farol.”
Meanwhile, inside the Oval Office, the Don stood staring at the doors of the Tardis.
“What do we do boss?” the blue skinned alien asked. “You gonna raise his bounty?”

“My organisation will never pay more than ten million credits to any one person, ever,” the Don replied simply. “So we must get the Doctor and kill him.”
“How d’ya suggest we do that then?” another man asked. “We can’t get in there.”
“So we lure him out,” the Don replied. “I want someone to find a way to contact him and tell him I want to negotiate with him, but I’ll only do it out here.” Suddenly the back phone on the Don’s desk started to ring. One of the henchmen answered it.
“It’s for you boss,” he said. “It’s the Doctor.” The Don snatched the phone off of the stooge.
“Hello?”

“I’d be delighted to have a chat with you on two conditions,” the Doctor said. “One, my companions stay in here and two you let me move the Tardis to a safer location.”
“You have yourself a deal,” the Don replied.
“Oh and I want to do it one on one if you don’t mind,” the Doctor added.
“Fine,” the Don replied. He slammed the phone back down and clicked his fingers, pointing to the door. As the Doctor emerged from the Tardis and made it dematerialise with the sonic screwdriver the last henchman closed the door behind him.
“Right then, where do you want to start?” the Doctor asked. The Don took a seat, letting out a fart as he did so. The Doctor smelt it and it seemed familiar somehow.

“Please take a seat,” he said, gesturing towards a small chair facing opposite him. The Doctor sat down, desperately trying to remember where he had lest smelt the foul odour the Don had just let off.
“So are you going to raise the bounty or not?” the Doctor asked, putting aside his musings for now.
“My Mafia will never pay more than ten million credits for any one person Doctor,” the Don replied.
“I think we’re through here,” the Doctor replied, getting to his feet. He reached for his sonic screwdriver.
“Hold on Doctor,” the Don said. “Please don’t be so hasty. I think you will find my offer acceptable.” The Doctor hesitantly took his seat.
“I’m listening,” he said.

“My offer Doctor is this. We will allow your companions and your machine to go free. We will let you live and we will remove the bounty that we have placed over you.”
“But…”
“However you must remain here. You must work for the Mafia and tell us the secret of time travel.”
“Out of the question,” the Doctor snapped without hesitation. The Don farted again.
“You have no choice Doctor,” the Don replied. “Do you want to know why I placed a bounty over your head?”
“Where have I smelt that before?” the Doctor said absent mindedly.
“As revenge Doctor,” the Don went on. “For killing my family.”

“For killing…” The Don let another fart go. “Where have I smelt that? Killing your family? What are you talking about?”
“So now Doctor it is time I murdered you, just like you murdered my brothers.” The Don got to his feet as he farted yet again.
“That smell…” the Doctor mumbled. “Murdered your…” It dawned on the Doctor. His eyes widened in horror. “You’re a Slitheen!” he exclaimed. The Don smiled.
He brought his hand to his forehead and slowly began to unzip his skin suit, blue light filling the room and an electronic sound resounding through the air. The Doctor turned and barged out of the doorway, taking down the stairs.

Soon the Don, in naked Slitheen form, burst through the doorway, taking out half of the doorframe as he went, and chased the Doctor down the stairs.
“You should not have come here Doctor,” the Don exclaimed, pouncing down the stairs two at a time.
The Doctor, seeing he had no chance of outrunning the Don, made a leap of faith, jumping as far as he could and rolling down the rest of the stair case.
Battered and bruised he got to his feet and took off, barging through the crowd. The Slitheen landed on the floor and skidded, almost falling down. He regained his balance and took off after the Doctor.


Meanwhile Alana and Farol were stood watching the Tardis monitor. Outside they could see that they had materialised on the roof of the building. They could see that the Mafia henchmen of the Don had surrounded the Tardis, having been alerted by a guard who heard it materialise on the roof. They were looking to find a way inside.
“Well now what?” Farol asked.
“We have to get back to the Doctor,” Alana replied. She started inspecting the console. “If only there was some way we could operate this thing.”
“Well I haven’t a clue how time machines work,” Farol told her.
“You think I do?” she replied. “I’ve only travelled in this thing twice! I’ve barely known the Doctor for two minutes!”
“Well we can forget that idea then.”

“The Doctor wouldn’t give up like that.”
“You said you barely know the man!”
“But I know what kind of a man he is,” Alana returned. “He is the type that never gives up no matter how grim the situation. We were tied to a stake and about to be burned not one day ago and he never surrendered!”
“You were going to be burned?” Farol asked in disbelief.
“Long story,” she replied. “The point is I’ve got a feeling the Doctor is in trouble.”
“How do you know that?”
“Hey come on, you’ve done your research. You should know where ever he goes danger isn’t far behind him. He only needs to be left alone for two minutes and hey presto; there’ll be some alien monster or something chasing him.”

“Well how do you suggest we find him? He doesn’t have a phone, we can’t work this thing and we can’t get outside without risking being shot to a thousand pieces!”
Several minutes passed in which Alana spent her time trying to think of something, anything. Suddenly something occurred to her.
“Wait a minute! The Doctor keeps saying this thing is partially telepathic,” she exclaimed.
“Your point?”
“Well if it knows what we’re thinking all we have to do is ask it to take us to the Doctor and I’m betting it’ll take us there.”
“Ask it then,” Farol replied. Alana stood woodenly for a moment, looking at the column under the impression if
anything that was its brain.

“Erm, take us, erm, take us to the Doctor….please,” she said awkwardly. Nothing happened. “The Doctor’s in trouble,” she continued. “Can you take us to him?” Still the Tardis did nothing. Alana went to speak again.
“Hey,” Farol said. She ignored him. “Hey!”
“What?” Alana snapped.
“You said it could hear our thoughts. It’s telepathic; it doesn’t have ears for Christ’s sake! Think it, don’t say it.”
“Good point,” Alana mumbled. Again she stood awkwardly in front of the column and closed her eyes. She thought the question and opened her eyes. The column remained still. “Maybe me alone isn’t enough,” she suggested after a blank look from Farol accusing her idea of being stupid.
“What?” Farol replied.

“You have to think it too.” Farol laughed.
“Listen, just because you made a fool of yourself doesn’t mean I’m going to make a fool of myself just to make you feel better.”
“I’m sorry?” Alana replied.
“You think I’m going to ask a machine to do me a favour?” Farol asked sarcastically. “You’re out of your mind. You’re as nuts as the Doctor.”
“I am not crazy!” Alana shouted. “And neither is the Doctor for that matter! There’s a reason he asked we stay in here and that’s because he wants to protect us! Which is saying something as you are the one who’s supposed to be protecting him! So do your job mister and ask the Tardis…”

“The machine doesn’t know we want to get it to take us to the Doctor!” Farol roared. “It’s a bloody machine! Look, I’ll prove it!” Farol turned to the console and looked at the column. “Please Mr Machine take us to the Doctor. We know you can hear us despite being an old rickety time machine but please…”
A surge of electricity shot through the console where Farol was holding onto and sent him flying backwards while, at the same time, the column slowly began to move. Farol looked up at Alana, who smiled down at him.
“It can’t hear us you know,” she said with much glee.
“Coincidence,” Farol replied, even though he was only trying to convince himself. “It must have been some sort of feed back. It must have started the column off.”

“Must have been,” Alana replied.
The column stopped moving and Alana looked at Farol before she went over to the doors and opened them.


The Doctor ran down the corridor. He tried one door after another, but they were all locked. He turned to see the Slitheen sprinting towards him. He pulled out the sonic screwdriver and unlocked a door, slamming it shut behind him.
The Doctor looked around what seemed to be another office. He grabbed a chair and rammed it under the door handle. He locked the door as a safety measure with the screwdriver. The Doctor turned and inspected the office.
It was fairly large with a desk at the far end. Two doors led off into an en suite and a broom cupboard. A large glass window formed the back wall and large drape curtains were on either side. Suddenly the Doctor jumped as the Slitheen rammed against the door.

“Oh how fun,” he said. “You want to make a game out of this do you Doctor?” A claw slammed through the door and began to tear downwards. “I can smell you now. Fresh meat straight from the bone!” The claw withdrew and one half tumbled down as the Slitheen used itself as a battering ram. The Doctor looked for somewhere to hide. He ran into the en suite, locking the door behind him.
The Don rammed through the front door and began stalking through the room. He sniffed.
“It is no use hiding Doctor,” he said. “I can smell you out. I have been waiting for this moment a long time. Come to me Doctor! Let me hug you with my great big arms. All I want to do is shake your hand. Don’t mind the claws, they’ll just tear you limb from LIMB!” The Don roared the last word as he rammed against the en suite door.

The Doctor jumped into the bath and hid behind the shower curtain, panting and listening the door crack and splinter. It soon gave way, tumbling to the floor with a crash. The Doctor could hear the Don breathing heavily in anticipation for the kill.
“Doctor,” he called. “Oh Doctor, you’re such a tease. But honestly, how many places in a room as small as this can you hide? Come to me Doctor and I promise I will make it painless. Come here Doctor, come to daddy Slitheen!” The Slitheen tore the shower curtain down and screamed.
It lifted its clawed hand into the air ready for the kill only to pause as it found nothing. It bent over to look inside the bath tub and again found nothing. It blinked and turned. It sniffed and bent down to open the cupboard.

“Oh very good Doctor. But sadly in vein.” As it went to open the cupboard the Doctor leaped down from the shower railings, which he had used to hurl himself up to the roof, and cracked the glass shampoo bottle over the Don’s green head. He stood up straight and screamed, swinging a great clawed hand around to knock the Doctor’s head off. The Doctor ducked and the hand smashed the mirror on the wall.
The Doctor ran out of the en suite and through the door. He sprinted back the way he came and soon the Don was following once again. Up ahead the Doctor saw the Tardis materialise, the familiar blue box was a welcome sight. Alana opened the doors and looked outside and then the Doctor realised he couldn’t let her risk her life.

He ran up to the doors and shoved Alana inside, closing the doors and locking them. He dodged just in time to allow the Don to ram head long into the Tardis doors and collapse on the floor in a daze. The Doctor made the Tardis dematerialise with a press of his sonic screwdriver.
The Doctor looked around for something to give him the advantage. He grabbed a passing woman and, uncharacteristically, held the sonic screwdriver to her neck as if it were a weapon. He watched as the Don got to his feet and looked at the Doctor.
“Come anywhere near me and I’ll kill her,” the Doctor said, backing off as the Don advanced. “I won’t really,” he whispered in her ear, quiet enough to make sure the Don didn’t hear.

“Come on Doctor,” the Don replied. “We all know you can’t…”
“As you like using my name so much maybe you should tell me yours,” the Doctor snapped.
“Very well. Let’s have a little banter before the kill. It’ll make the feast that much more delectable. My name is Thumblewendeng Hakult Slitheen the Fourth. My friends call me Deng.”
“Ok Deng Slitheen,” the Doctor carried on, now heading up the stairs as Deng advanced even closer. “Erm, break off this hunt or I’ll kill her.”

“No Doctor, don’t please,” Deng said. “She means everything to me.” The Doctor knew he was lying. “Come here my pretty,” Deng said. The woman kicked the Doctor in the shin and ran towards Deng, who lifted up a clawed hand and struck the woman, who fell lifelessly down the stairs.
“Why the hell did you do that?!” the Doctor snapped. “She hadn’t done anything!”
“She got in my way Doctor,” Deng replied. “Nothing shall stop me feasting on your raw, dead, limp carcass.” Deng began to laugh as the Doctor retreat further and further up the stairs. “Any last requests?” Deng asked as he lifted a claw high into the air.

“Yes actually,” the Doctor said as he pressed up against the doors to the Don’s office. Deng paused and blinked at him, confused. “Look! A distraction!” Caught in the moment and the commotion Deng, stupidly, looked behind him. He soon realised what had happened and turned to see the golden doors closing and being locked from within. He rammed up against them.
“You can’t run forever Doctor!” he spat hatefully. “I will get you and you will die by my claws!”
“One word of advice for the future Thumblewendeng Hakult Slitheen the Fourth,” the Doctor said from within the office. “Next time when you want to eat someone don’t back them up against a pair of golden double doors and then let them get on the other side of them. Gold is a bitch to break.”

“Prepare to die Doctor! I will take great pleasure in prying the dead meat off your bones!” With that Deng took off for a way to get round to the side so he could burst through the window.
The Doctor, having heard Deng run off, slumped down in the chair to give himself a rest for a moment. He needed to catch his breath. How could he have been so stupid! To have put himself in a situation like this. He knew Deng wasn’t going to give up ever. He would have to risk trying to go through the doors.

He got up and crept over to them. He pressed his ears against them to hear if anyone was on the other side. There wasn’t a sound. Everyone must have run outside with all the commotion. The Doctor unlocked the doors and opened them a crack. He looked around and saw nothing.
He opened the doors fully but didn’t walk out onto the stairs. Suddenly a scream sounded and the Doctor spun around.
Deng Slitheen came crashing through the window, taking out half of the wall at the same time. This guy was very fast. Deng got to his feet and let out his terrifying scream again. The Doctor quickly ran out onto the stairs and started to close the doors shut. When they were nearly there however a great three fingered green clawed hand almost got the Doctor by the neck. The Doctor abandoned the doors and ran downstairs. Deng burst out of the room and stood at the top of the stairs and, with arms raised high into the air, let out one more frightful roar.

He took off down the stairs after the Doctor. He caught up quickly and swiped at the Doctor, knocking the Time Lord to the side and down the stairs. With the momentum Deng leaped down to the floor, regained his balance and grabbed the Doctor by the neck, lifting him high up into the air. The Doctor began to choke and flailed his arms.
“Die now Doctor,” Dreg spat. “Die and let me feast.”
“Not today,” the Doctor choked, booting Dreg in the chin. The Slitheen stumbled backwards and dropped the Doctor. Gasping for breath he ran outside and Dreg was soon hot in pursuit. The Doctor noticed the Mafia men assembled outside, once again surrounding the Tardis.

“Look, it’s a Slitheen!” he shouted, taking a gamble on his guts. The Mafia men turned around and the Doctor barged through them, opening the Tardis door. “He’s a Slitheen. The Raxicoricofallapatorians put a price on their heads you know. Two million credits alive, five million dead.”
“I’m gonna be rich,” one of them said, pulling out his gun.
Dreg slid to halt.
“It’s me you idiots, it’s the Don!”
“Don’t listen to him, he killed the Don! He ambushed us during the negotiations! Kill him and you can be rich!”
One of the men fired at Dreg, who took the shot directly in the middle of his chest. Angered he screamed and ran at the Mafia men, swinging his great arms and knocking them all flying. Dreg grabbed the Doctor by the neck again and lifted him into the air.

“Drop him or I’ll shoot you right between the eyes!” Farol said from inside the Tardis, aiming his weapon at Dreg. Dreg dropped the Time Lord and lifted his arms into the air.
“Thank you Farol,” the Doctor panted. “Glad to see you’ve started doing your job.”
“I’d have been doing it a long time ago if it wasn’t for you Doctor,” Farol replied. The Doctor turned to Dreg.
“Well as fun as it has been I’m going to have to leave you here I’m afraid, Thumblewendeng my friend,” he said. “Goodbye.” As Farol holstered his pistol again the Doctor went to shut the door. Dreg, bleeding from the chest, rammed the door open and knocked the Doctor flying and crashing into Farol. The two of them hit the floor while Deng fell to one knee, the Tardis door shutting behind him.

“Now the feast will be twice as tasty,” he growled. “I’ll take all three of you and eat you in your own machine!”
He got to his feet and went to kill Alana. She screamed and dodged to one side, the claw hitting the Tardis console. The column began to move as the Tardis entered a temporal orbit.
As Farol got to his feet Dreg raised his arms and screamed, swinging around and knocking the pistol out of Farol’s hands. Dreg grabbed him by the neck and brutally threw him across the control room.
The Doctor had gotten to his feet and was already on the other side. He had opened the rear door and was ushering Alana through it.

“Come through here Farol!” he shouted. The agent ran after Alana. “You can kill us if you can find us,” the Doctor said before closing the door behind him.
“You can run but you can’t hide from me Doctor!” Dreg roared slamming through the door after his prey.
He was, however, forced to pause when reaching the other side of the doorway. He was confronted by what was literally a maze of corridors and doorways. He would have to rely on his sense of smell. He could smell the woman’s fear from where he was stood.
Alana had, in fact, taken her chances in the nearest room, thinking Dreg wouldn’t look in there because it was too easy. She, however, had never before encountered a Slitheen and so knew nothing about their heightened sense of smell.

Dreg rammed his way through the door causing Alana to scream. He ran at her and brought his claws down. Alana however dodged to one side and the claws ripped down the wall. The Tardis groaned. Dreg turned and lifted his claws up high again. As Alana screamed Farol lunged through the doorway and onto Dreg’s back.
“Run!” he shouted. Alana ran out of the room and down several corridors. Dreg spun around frantically, wrecking the room in an attempt to get Farol off from around his neck. It worked as he slammed the agent against the wall.
Farol fell to the floor. Dreg picked him up by the throat and through him out of the doorway, causing him to slam through the door directly opposite and land, a crumpled heap on the floor.

Dreg slowly moved forwards, panting heavier now than ever as the blood continued to pour down his chest. He advanced on Farol who tried crawling away but to no avail. He turned on his back to watch the ruthless predator advance. Farol went for a second gun only to get it knocked out his hand like the last one. Dreg bent over, his face coming close to Farol’s.
“I will take great pleasure from feasting on your flesh first,” he growled.
“Leave him alone Thumblewendeng,” the Doctor said from the corridor. “I’m the one you’re after.” Deng turned to face the Doctor, dropping the now unconscious body of Farol to the floor.

“Are you offering yourself to me Doctor?” he asked.
“You’d like that wouldn’t you? I bet you’ve grown tired of the chase now that you’re injured.”
“It is a flesh wound,” Dreg said. “It takes away none of the pleasure I find from hunting you.”
“I suppose not,” the Doctor said. “Leave my companions alone, let them be. They weren’t there; they didn’t give the order to launch that missile did they? I did.”
“Which is why I am going to savour your meat,” Dreg said. “My parents and my siblings will give me a hero’s welcome when they learn of my feast here today Doctor.” The Doctor smiled.

“Oh I don’t think so,” he replied. “You see there isn’t going to be a feast here today.” The Doctor turned to walk off but paused and turned back. He needed to anger Dreg is the plan was to succeed. “Oh and by the way, I remember how Margaret had thanked me before she turned into an egg. She was so happy to be rid of you and your family. What was it she called you?” He paused as if in thought. “Ah yes, that was it, she said you were a bunch of stinking slimy mongrels,” he lied with a smile.
Dreg roared in anger and swung or the Doctor but the Time Lord had already started running. Dreg chased him, taking the bait.
“He took the bait,” the Doctor said down a small radio he had in his hand. “He’s on his way. I’ll let him chase me for a moment or two and then lead him in. Get ready.”

The Doctor headed into a large room filled with racks of costumes and clothes. He ducked and hid behind one of the rails and waited for Dreg to enter.
The Slitheen followed the Doctor, almost limping now. It sniffed for a trace of his family’s enemy and murderer. Almost purring the great green monster began to peer behind the rails of clothes. The Doctor silently began moving from one level to the next, always avoiding the prying green hands of his stalker. Soon Dreg lost his patience. He grabbed one rail and launched it across the room. Two more found themselves opposite to where they had been before a third was torn apart in two to reveal the Doctor. He looked up into the giant bulbous black eyes and smiled.

“Hello,” he said, “I’m the Doctor.” Dreg roared in anger and swung for his prey but the Doctor ducked and avoided the blow. “Not so pleased to meet me I see,” he said before turning and running off, Dreg in hot pursuit.
This time the Doctor ran into a huge hallway, in the centre of which was a large dome emerging from the floor. At the far end was a flight of stairs which split and led onto two platforms. The Doctor ran up the stairs and waited at the centre where they split in two. Dreg burst through the doors and, almost bent double, looked up at the Doctor.
“It’s over Dreg,” the Doctor said. “You can’t win. You can’t catch me in my own home.”
“I will not stop until you die for what you did to my brethren!” Dreg spat. “Now I will kill you!”

“Oh what’s the point?” the Doctor asked. Dreg stopped in his tracks. “Why do you do it? For the thrill? Is that it? Do you get a thrill from killing?”
“You killed my family! Now…”
“I didn’t kill your family! Most of them are still out there! And anyway if they weren’t planning on laying waste to an entire race just for the sake of making a bit of money they’d still be here!”
“You had no right to kill them just for their beliefs.”
“I had every right,” the Doctor snapped. “They were murderers and they were cheats and I hate both.”
“I will kill you even slower for that Doctor,” Dreg threatened.

“You know what, fine. Do it. Come on! Eat me! Eeeaaatttt meeeee!”
Dreg reared on his legs and pounced, flying through the air straight for the Doctor. He kicked the Doctor to the floor and landed on top of him, pinning him to the ground. He lifted his claws and went to deal the killing blow.
“Just one thing,” the Doctor said calmly. Dreg blinked at him. “Watch out for Alana. Just up there.” Dreg looked up to Alana waiting with a jug in her hands.
“What…”

“Vinegar,” she told Dreg. At once Dreg turned to run but Alana was too fast and she threw the liquid over Dreg. He stumbled forwards and fell down the stairs. He got to his feet and looked helplessly into the Doctor’s eyes before exploding, his innards flying all over and covering the Doctor from head to toe.
“You could say he got himself in a bit of a pickle,” the Doctor said with a smile. Alana looked at him in confusion. The Doctor sighed in exasperation. “Vinegar! You pickle things with vinegar do you not?” This time Alana sighed and rolled her eyes. “I though it was funny.”
“Good job you had plenty of vinegar in your kitchen,” Alana said ignoring him. “How come you have a kitchen anyway?”

“Hey I live in this thing remember,” the Doctor told her. “Even I can’t survive without food and sometimes you can’t beat fish and chips; and what are fish and chips without vinegar?”
“Yeah well thank god for citric acid is all I have to say.”
“And water,” the Doctor replied. “I have to have a bath and wash all this gunk off.”
“Yeah you stink,” Farol said from the doorway.
“Some job you did,” the Doctor told him as he walked down the stairs to get to the nearest bathroom. “You were the one who was supposed to be protecting us.” The Doctor walked past him and into the maze of corridors.
“Ignore him,” Alana said. “If it wasn’t for you I’d certainly be dead.” She gave him a peck on the cheek and headed for the control room.


About an hour later the Doctor walked into the console room to join Farol and Alana. The blue skinned Mafia man was also there.
“Ah Doctor,” he said. “We saw video footage of what happened in the Don’s office and I have now taken over control of the Mafia. I want you to know we have raised the price on your head for the time being.”
“Thank you,” the Doctor replied genuinely. “Now if you would kindly show yourself out I have to be getting on my way.”
“Doctor, Miss Trent,” he said with a nod before turning and leaving.
“He said that like he was doing you a favour,” Alana said.

“He is,” the Doctor replied. “Having bounty hunters and the like chasing me across the galaxy just adds to the excitement. So Farol, are you going to stick around and do your duty and all that rubbish?”
“I think I might just do that Doctor. From what I’ve seen your life is pretty hectic and I need some excitement. Beats doing paper work in an office all day.”
“Fantastic,” the Doctor said. “The more the merrier. So next stop is your hotel is it Alana?” Alana looked at the Doctor pleadingly before regaining her composure.
“I think I might stick around a little while longer. Besides, where would you be without me?”
“A lot better off,” the Doctor replied before working the console controls and setting the Tardis going.

“Thanks a lot,” Alana said.
“Well you can’t hide the truth Alana.” The Doctor turned to her and winked.