Chapter 17

1.

The prison she was put in was somewhere in the belly of the great ship. It was close to the engines, for it was sweltering hot in her cell, and she could hear the turbines constant roar, fighting to keep the massive structure floating in the air. No sign of the Doctor though, and she hadn't seen Martha since they were captured. A short stubby little man, who must be her guard, bought her some food and water, but it was impossible to tempt him in talking to her, although she had tried hard to piss him off.

Eventually, she realized that wouldn't come for her till dawn. The corridor outside her cell was deserted, and she was on her own. Donna sank down on her cot, her throat sore of shouting. Facing her was one of those digital counters that seemed to have been installed in every room on board of the Valliant. No longer did it display the time. It was now counting down the seconds. There was only four hours left before it would reach zero.

She had been running for so long that she never had time before to think. Now that she was forced into isolation, with no-where to left to run and with the four walls of her prison closing in on her, she realized that she had never felt so utterly alone in her entire life. She took out the Master's keepsake out of her pocket. The guards had searched her before she was brought in, but for some reason, had overlooked this little trinket. Perhaps they had let her keep it because they knew that it was broken and useless. She traced with her fingers over the small empty screen, and recalled how she had been forced to watch how the Master had aged the Doctor. She exhaled deeply. Tears were welling up in her eyes.

"Why didn't you eat? You look like you're starving."

She raised her head up, her heart racing. There was only a tiny barred window in the door of her cell that allowed her a glimpse of the world outside. A man stood in front of it. A shadow obscured his face, but she recognized his voice.

She took in a deep breath, and forced herself to recall how Saxon had tricked her so very cruelly before.

"You must eat something to keep your strength." The man said.

"No thanks." She answered coldly. "I would rather not be poisoned." Her voice had the tendency to tremble, but she forced herself to sound strong. "Besides, even if it isn't poisoned, what's the bloody point? You are going to execute me in the morning. If my gallows meal is going to be offered to me with complements from the great Harold Saxon, than I would rather stuff myself with the rat droppings on the floor."

There was a short silence at the other side before she heard him snigger.

"Thank God." He laughed. "He couldn't shut you up! But then again, who in the world could?"

It finally dawned on Donna. That voice for which she had carried so little hope suddenly shook her awake. She rose and stepped towards the tiny window, placing her hands on the bars.

"It's you." She whispered. She studied his face. This time, the man she was facing wasn't Harold Saxon. He looked thinner, and tired, his eyes red-rimmed and sunken, but his lips carried a smile of relief. "It really is you!" She blurted out. The tears welled up again, but this time they ran down her cheek out of joy. She reached out as far as the bars allowed her, and touched his face. He gently wiped her tears away with his fingertips.

"You're not hurt?" He asked with concern, and studied her. "He didn't do anything to you?"

She shook her head. "You have to find Martha. He got her too! He said he was going to execute us in front of the Doctor. You must-"

"I can't do anything for her." He stated in a matter of fact voice.

She didn't understand it at first. "But…didn't you escaped? Saxon won't let you go on his own."

"No, he won't. Unless he is sure that I will do exactly what he wants me to do." He lowered his head to escape her questioning eyes. "I do his biddings now." He explained. "I'm not here to help the others."

"What are you talking about? You can't be..." She shook her head. "I saw you. That day when Saxon send out that message to threaten me and Martha. When he ordered you to hurt the Doctor, you were reluctant. He had to force you to do it."

"How could you know?" He asked bitterly.

"I saw it." Donna said, as she waited for him to raise his head again to look at her. "I saw it in your eyes. You're not anything like him. Not anymore."

He remained silent with his head bowed.

"Please." Donna urged. "You've got to help the Doctor and the others."

"I can't." He finally looked up at her, but his eyes were shadowed by a deep darkness that she hadn't seen before. "You've no idea how bad it is. And it's going to become even worse once this day is over. He won't kill the Doctor. He enjoys it too much so see him suffer. I think it's the only thing that keeps him going. As for the others, they are dispensable. By being involved with him they have dug their own graves. Nothing gives him more pleasure than to see the Doctor grief over these humans deaths. There's nothing I can do."

"Then, why are you here?"

The Master was baffled by her question. "I'm here to help you."

Donna shook her head and stared at him in disbelief.

"I'm sure I can reason with him. I've slaved and sweated to build that bloody machine for him. I've done everything he had asked of me. It won't be for nothing."

"Have you become as mad as he is? You know you can't trust him!"

"I just want you to be safe." He tried. "You have to stay by my side Donna. Once the drums are here, there is no place left in the universe to hide. Everything is going to be destroyed. He won't stop till there is nothing left! You don't want to oppose him or be out there now on your own!"

Donna turned away from him. She held her hand on her mouth to stop herself from crying as her world was falling apart.

"Donna. You're not listening. I want to save you! You should stay on board of the Valliant. He won't kill me. He doesn't have the guts to kill me. So if you just let me plead for your release, and you promise to keep your head down afterwards -"

"I don't need…" She choked on her words as the pain of his betrayal wrenched her heart and knocked the air out of her lungs. "I don't need you to save me!" She shouted through her tears.

The Master was shocked. "I don't understand this."

She returned to her cot and wept quietly. "I thought you said you cannot do anything for anyone. Why am I so lucky then?" She asked in a shivering voice.

"Oh come on! Why do you always need to be so pigheaded?!" He suddenly yelled, more out of desperation and concern than any real anger. "Ever since we got here we've been running like fugitives. We've crossed the world together, fighting for our lives and hiding in sewers like rats. And now you're telling me that after surviving all these months of hardship you rather get yourself killed because you cannot put aside your dimwitted morals and swallow your stupid, stupid pride?!"

"It seems that those are all I got left." Donna whispered with her eyes turning cold. "I'm asking you for the last time. Did you mean every word you've just said to me?"

The Master looked away with a pained expression on face, his lips pressed together tightly till they were but thin white lines, preventing him from telling her what was on his mind.

"Right." Donna muttered. "If that's so, than you shouldn't waste any more of your time on me. You don't need to go crawl and beg for my life at Saxon's feet. Let me share the same fate with the others, and let him execute me tomorrow. Why should I be treated any differently? I'm nothing special."

Her words pierced right through his hearts, but the Master said nothing in return and left.

2.

The first light of dawn had only just breached the horizon when the guards came to collect her. She felt relieved. Her heart was numb and her hands were cold, like she had been fished out of a frozen pond. The men pulled her up from the cot.

"Get your hands off me. I'll walk." She didn't need to be dragged to her fate for she had made up her mind. Today, everything will finally be resolved, and her troubles with the Master would seize to exist, one way or the other.

The men brought her to the control deck where their Lord and Master was waiting. The doors in the great hall parted and Donna stepped inside. Other prisoners were gathered here, and when Donna saw Jack standing at the side with Martha's family, she couldn't suppress a sigh of relief. The captain was shackled in chains while the others were kept under guard by armed soldiers, but at least they seemed to be unharmed. She was pushed towards a high scaffold built around a machine with two massive antennas. Angry sparks of energy ignited from the coils that ran between them. The guard next to her moved with his gun, gesturing that she should look up. There, standing on top of the platform next to the control panel, was Harold Saxon himself, gazing down at her with a large complacent smile plastered over his face. Lucy Saxon was by his side, but her expression was blank, and she reacted to her husband's violent thrills with apathy, while she constantly wore a sad ghost of a smile on her ruby painted lips.

Standing behind him, like his shadow turned into flesh, was the Master. For a short moment, their eyes met.

The doors swept open behind her. Donna turned and felt such relief when she saw that it was Martha who was escorted into the room. When she came to stand next to her to face Saxon, she glanced at her and gave her a faint smile, as if to remind Donna to keep faith, and not to be scared of the ruthless man towering above them.

"Finally." Saxon exclaimed in a teasing voice. "The whole gang is back together again. Isn't this a joyful occasion. What do you think?" He picked up the birdcage from the platform to show it to those cowering at his feet below. The Doctor steadied himself by grabbing hold of the bars, and whispered something that only Saxon and the Master could hear. Saxon's cheerfulness immediately turned into annoyance. "Oh hush you old prune. If you don't stop saying that, I swear I'm going to rip out your tongue." Donna uttered a cry as Saxon dropped the cage on the floor and kicked it aside.

"Speaking of keeping one's mouth shut, why is that irritating redhead not gagged?" He stared down at her for a moment before he fixed his gaze on Martha. "And did anybody even bothered to search this one?" He rolled with his eyes as the guards slowly responded to their Lord's comments and started searching her pockets. "Not in there, you dimwits. It's that locker-shaped device dangling from her neck." Martha gasped as one the guards snatched the necklace with the small teleporter from her.

"Give it here." Saxon ordered. "That's a good little Earthling. Now, kneel, both of you."

Martha kneeled down while the guards had to push Donna on her knees. They tried to shove a piece of cloth into her mouth but she kept spitting it out.

"Always the difficult one." Saxon sighed mockingly. "Never mind." He inhaled deeply and raised his head high. "Down on earth, the fleet is ready to launch. In three minutes, the blackhole converters will align, and two hundred thousand ships will be set their course into space to burn right across the universe." He spun around and watched excitedly how the counter on the wall ticked away the precious seconds. "I never could resist a ticking clock." Saxon cheered, and grabbed hold of his forlorn wife. He pressed his lips onto hers with his tongue wriggling inside her mouth. Then he grinned and wiped the lipstick off before he pushed her aside and moved to the intercom.

"My children. Are you ready?"

Six billion Toclefanes, floating in the Earth's stratosphere and all waiting for his command, roared through the speakers. Their voices were united and sounded as one. "We are ready Master! We will fly and blaze and slice! We will fly and blaze and slice!"

"At zero, to mark this marvelous, glorious day, these two, the past and future companions of the Doctor, will die." He grinned down at her, and Donna felt a cold shiver snake along her spine as she recognized the same madness in his eyes that she had seen when he brutally murdered Tom Milligan.

"Ha, isn't this exciting? Like slicing up the turkey at Christmas! I think I'll start with the gingerhead. It's weird, but I wanted to kill her ever since I set eyes on her." He glanced back at his future-self whose anguish was clearly visible on his face. "Perhaps there's really something as homicidal hate at first sight." He laughed and slowly aimed his laserscrewdriver at Donna.

"Bow down your head. Now, I know I'm going to regret this, but since this is a special occasion. Any last words, Donna Noble?"

Donna ignored him, but gazed at the Master one last time, then inhaled deeply before closing her eyes.

"Nothing? Are you sure?" Saxon ridiculed. "No mad-woman's ramblings, no well-articulated opinions that you would like to share with us miss Noble?" Donna remained silent, and Saxon glanced at his future-self. "I thought you liked her because you admired her strong spirit. Such a terrible mistake you've made! Look at her. She is absolutely pathetic." He gazed down at Donna. "An over the hill, dimwitted Earth woman with mundane looks and who is, to be honest, a bit on the large side, who thinks she is worthy of a Timelord. Who do you think that you are? One of the great temptresses of Katria Nova? The Goddess Venus of Botticelli perhaps?" His laugh that followed was cruel, but the hurt didn't show on Donna's face.

"You, miss Noble, aren't even worthy of being the Doctor's companion, let alone to be one of mine." He aimed his weapon at her head. "And so it falls to me, the Master of all, to establish from this day on, a new order of Timelords, and from this day forward –"

Donna's lips pulled into a smile, and was joined by Martha who started to chuckle.

Saxon halted, visibly annoyed. "What? What's so bloody funny?"

"That gun." Martha replied, keeping her head bowed.

"What about it? I destroyed it, didn't I?"

"Did you really believe that we would build a special gun to kill you?" Donna opened her eyes again and stared at Saxon with a renewed defiance.

"What you do mean?" Saxon asked, confused for a moment, but then, the Doctor answered him in a voice that was still a whisper.

"I would never ask them to kill for me."

"It doesn't matter." Saxon snorted. "I still got them exactly where I want them, which is kneeling in front me to face their imminent execution."

"But we knew that you got control of professor Dorcherty because of her son. That's why we went to her. We wanted to be captured so would be here at the right time." Martha explained.

"We weren't traveling the world trying to raise an armed resistance force or to search for some legendary weapon to kill." Donna added. "We were fighting you by telling others about the Doctor. No weapons or mindless bloodshed, just words."

"We did just what the Doctor said." Martha finally gazed up and looked at the Doctor, who stared back at her with a sad smile on his face. "And everywhere we went we found people who were prepared to listen. So we told them about the one man who can save us all from you. We told them to pass it on, to spread the word so that everybody would know about it."

"Is that it? You were spreading faith and hope?" Saxon laughed. "A fat lot of good use that is for every sad Earthling in existence. Ladies, you both have wasted your time on magic beans and fairy dust."

"You're wrong." Martha said, and faced him with a glint of determination in her eyes. "Because I gave them an instruction. Just like the Doctor told me. I told them that if they would keep one thought in mind at one specific time using the countdown –"

"Something glorious would undoubtedly happen." Saxon mocked, with his laugher becoming more sarcastic as Martha continued. "I'm sure that by the very power of prayer, all will be restored."

Martha shook her head. "It's not just a simple prayer. Right across the world, one word will be spoken in the collective human consciousness, but amplified by the 15 working satellites of your precious Archangel network."

Saxon was still seemingly unaffected by Martha's threats, but his cynical smile slowly turned to stone. Donna studied his face and than glanced at the Master. Something in the Timelord's eyes, a badly hidden sense of gloom, worried her deeply.

But Martha didn't notice it, and continued. "Using it as a telepathic field joining the whole human race together, with all of them, every person on earth thinking the same thing at the same time, just one word. And that word is…Doctor."

The countdown finally reached zero, and the cage with the Doctor still lying at Saxon 's feet was suddenly engulfed by brightly glowing rings of light.

Saxon stared at the buildup of energy and pressed his lips tightly together as he realized that he was losing control. The prisoners in the room closed their eyes and called out for the Doctor. All over the world, the same thing was happening. The enslaved humans in the labour-camps all stopped working and called the Timelord's name. Most of their guards threw down their guns and joined them, for they too were tired of Saxon's blood-drenched reign. The few free men and women of the Resistance knelt down and whispered Doctor in the dark tunnels beneath the ground or in the abandoned houses where they sheltered. People in Asia, Africa, Europe and the new world, people of different religion and different skin color, all joined together in one thought, in one dream of hope and salvation, all crying out for the Doctor to help them.

When the guards in the control room saw that the energy field had broken the Doctor free out of his cage and had restored him to an old man, they didn't think twice and they too called for the Doctor. Finally, Lucy closed her eyes. She knew it was almost time, and she did exactly what she must do. She could call out the Doctor's name once, not in a silent prayer but out-loud in a clear voice, before she felt the sting of her husband's hand burning on her cheek. Saxon threw her against the machine. "Traitor." He hissed in her face, while the anger burning inside him remained dangerously calm. "Now I know for sure that I should get rid of you." He turned to his future-self with a mad grin on his face. "If you still want to protect the paradox, and save your own life. Now would be the right time to do something about this."

The Master stared at him. His hand hesitated on the handle on the control panel of his great machine. Saxon strode towards him in angry steps. "Must I do everything around here?" He sneered, and grabbing hold of the Master's hand, he pushed the lever down.

The glowing light around the Doctor abruptly dimmed as the machine behind them sparked into life. A great vortex of energy appeared between the two antennas, and grew quickly in size as blue particles were captured in an orbit around it, like rocks around a neutron star, spinning at increasing speed till it became one massive ball of blinding light and immense heat.

The violence by which the vortex was created knocked the Doctor off his feet, and made the Master stagger backwards. Harold Saxon stared at his creation with a glint of madness in his eyes. Such raw magnificent beauty, and such power. Perhaps the Doctor was right, how could he call humankind a degenerate race if they were capable of producing this! He turned to look at the Doctor, who watched the workings of the Master's creation with growing horror.

"What have you done?" He asked in a frail voice. With his youth only partly restored, he was still helpless and unable to put a halt to Saxon's madness.

"Interception!" Saxon roared, above the noise of the vortex, and over the sound of drums that swelled inside his mind. He threw his head back, lifted his arms in the air, cherishing his moment of victory. "By telling them to think one thought at one specific time and by aligning my satellite network on their signal, you have just made it too easy for me to hack in and steal that precious energy. Instead of wasting it on you, it's now being stored inside this telepathic energy vault, ready to be put to a better use."

Donna couldn't move, not even a finger. She stared at the others. Everyone-else who had called for the Doctor was suffering the same fate. Inside her head, the frightened voices of thousands of men and women were screaming for help, their consciousness frozen together as it was drained and sucked into the vault.

"I knew about your secret, ever since I was able to look into the mind of my future-self." Saxon explained. "He may not realize it, but he remembers more than he knows. I saw it Doctor. I saw how Martha Jones came to me, performed her little trick, and got the rest of your precious humans to restore you. I saw how you defeated me. I'm not going to make that same mistake again."

It's all my fault. Donna thought, as she finally realized what Saxon had done. I made this happen. I brought the Master back. Now the Doctor wouldn't be able to stop him and everything in the universe will die.

"Master! Stop this!" The Doctor pleaded, and sank on his knees. "You're draining their minds dry! You are killing them! Please stop! I'll do anything! You can do anything to me, what-ever you want, but please just let them go!" He would give his life in return for those of the humans. But his enemy couldn't see the reason why he should stop.

"You, Doctor, are killing them." He replied with contempt. "Your friends are dying because you're not smart enough to save them." He turned to the great machine, and reached out to the heart of the vault where a crystal was locked inside an insulated casing. The bolts of energy that dispatched from the blazing sphere struck the tip of the crystal continuously, sending it aglow like a magnificent star.

"Me, I am too busy with becoming a God." Saxon whispered, and held in his breath as he touched the glowing stone with his fingers with a tenderness that one would reserve for lovers. Bolts of energy jumped over into his hand, and he let it enter by the nerve endings of his fingertips. He felt how it spread over his entire body, penetrating every cell. "With this massive amount of energy I could extend my life. Not only to restore it to its full, for what is only a thousand years, or a million years even, but a blink of an eye when facing eternity. No, what I aim to become is more than that! So much more! With the help of these Earthlings I will become immortal! As one of the last of the Timelords in existence, I shall become a living, breathing God!"

The Doctor reached forward and tried to pull the crystal from the vault's center. But as soon as he touched it he burnt his hand on the glowing stone. Saxon smiled as he watched how the Doctor let out a cry of agony. "Once again, it's isomorphically locked. You can never be too careful." He raised his hand and a bolt of blue energy ignited from the tip of his finger. It zapped the Doctor full in the chest, sending him flying against the wall.

"How about that! You've committed genocide for the sake of the birth of new God. But then again, was the Doctor himself not created in the fire of destruction and in the bloodshed of war." Saxon remarked, bursting into laughter, as he planted his hand flat on the crystal to let the energy flow free into his body. He felt how it reorganized the very atoms of his being, rewriting his biological DNA, improving it till the flaws that had programmed him to be susceptible for illness, and for natural deterioration and aging were completely removed. Saxon closed his eyes and inhaled deeply. How good it felt, to be finally free from the fear of death! But still, there was more energy to be harvested, streaming in as billions of humans below kept feeding their minds into the machine, and as it passed through the vault and into Harold Saxon, he became aware of the enormous power that he was going to possess. For not only could his mind already function on a level that was far beyond that of the Doctor, it would also be capable of moving objects as it had gained the ability of telekinesis. He knew that if he would come to absorb everything that the human race could provide him, he would eventually be able to move the planets in the sky, change the very course of time, or even alter the very fabric of reality.

Donna observed all that happened in front of her with hollow eyes. Her mind was failing her, the neurons in her brain starting to shut down as all of the energy had been sucked out of these living cells. She was still standing on her feet, but the world around her was slowly turning black. The Master who had kept himself in the shadows behind his machine watched helplessly how the light in her eyes dimmed. She lost her consciousness and collapsed on the floor. Others followed, prisoners and guards alike. Their bodies grew limp and fell over as their mind turned blank.

Saxon, meanwhile, couldn't care less. "Oh Doctor, this is GLORIOUS!" He exclaimed. A dark madness, a relentless hunger for power, raged in his eyes. "I can move anything with only the power of my mind." And he demonstrated it by lifting one of the paralyzed guards from his feet till he dangled in mid-air, then smashed him head first against the wall, breaking the man's skull. "I can set fires to the oceans, I can blasts planets out of the sky, all by just wanting it to be done! Soon, I will be able to make the very fabric of reality tremble with just one snap of a finger." He inhaled deeply, and smiled. "And so it came to be that the renegade Timelord, who had once named himself the Master to impose order in the chaos of the universe, at long last tasted immortality, and finally silenced the drums inside his head by bringing it into this world." He turned to Doctor who gazed back at him in utter horror. "Once Legion has entered this dimension, you're time will be over." A look of nostalgia came up on Saxon's face. "Did you ever wonder why I never could kill you? It's a bloody mystery really, even to me. But now I finally understand. You Doctor, are a part of me, a necessary evil, the bleeding thorn in my side. You were the force who had shaped me into who I am. If I had succeeded in killing you, then who on Gallifrey should I be fighting?" He laughed cynically. "I guess I was afraid to be alone and without a purpose. But now that I've become a God…Well…who needs enemies when you're a living God?!"

"You're not a God yet."

The Master grabbed hold of the crystal and immediately the energy flowing into Saxon was cut down and redirected into his future-counterpart. The Master grinned back at him while Saxon's smile drained from his face. "Isomorphic control indeed. But with a slight modification. It's programmed to match my polluted, more inferior DNA, instead of yours. Hence the bypass." He winked at him defiantly. Before Saxon could strike back at him, he moved his hand and a lightening bolt blasted Saxon away from the machine. The Master took one look at Donna who was lying still on the floor. Her eyes were closed, but he could hear her breathing, and he knew that she was still alive. There was still time to save her. He closed his eyes, and using the isomorphic override that he had secretly programmed into the machine, he reversed the process, sending the energy from the vault back into the humans. But the process was so violent that he became stuck to the crystal. He felt how it started to drain him from his own strengths. Saxon rose up and fired a bolt of energy at his future-self.

"Get off the fucking control!" He roared in a furious anger, and blasted another lightening bolt at him, but the Master dived away while he held on to the crystal. "Doctor!" He yelled, gritting through his teeth as he tried to avoid the blasts. "I can't use the energy in the vault to restore you or they will die! I have to use the energy that was already transferred out of it."

The Doctor understood what he meant. "Finish the reverse process and save the others. Save her. There is no way you can restore me!"

"You're right." The Master muttered. "There is no way to do it. Not without some sort of conductor." When Saxon came close and raised his hand to fire a new bolt at him, he snatched his wrist and held it down firmly. The energy rushed out of Saxon's body, passing right through that of the Master, before it left him through the tip of his finger and blasted as a pure blue surge of energy into the Doctor.

"No!" Saxon shouted, and fought wildly like a captured beast to free himself, but his hand was now completely deadlocked. "You can't do this!" He stared furiously at the Master.

The energy-field returned around the Doctor, swelling steadily in size and increasing in brightness as the Timelord was fully restored to his former-self. Down below, Donna, like the others around her, regained consciousness and opened their eyes. She saw the Master struggling with Saxon to fight over the control of the machine, while the Doctor, the fully restored Doctor, continued to glow and started to levitate above the platform as the energy-field lifted his feet from the floor.

"Master!" She yelled, realizing what he was trying to do. "The Doctor is back!" A smile of hope dawned on her face. "You can stop now!"

"I can't." He gasped, and fell back against the control panel, his hand still holding firmly onto Saxon's wrist, while the energy is leaving him to add to that of the Doctor. "I can't stop it!"

"You idiot!" Saxon hissed. He was finally gaining the upper-hand as the Master quickly grew weaker. "If you want to sacrifice your life for her than so be it. I'm not going to join you in your demise. Not today." And with the last of his strength, he pushed himself away from his weakened counterpart and was free from the grip of the energy-field. Without Saxon, the energy pull quickly turned on the Master alone, draining him dry at a terrifying speed. Using telekinesis, the Doctor tore the Master away from the crystal.

Donna climbed up the staircase and rushed over to him as the Doctor gently put him down at her feet.

His eyes were closed. She called his name, but he didn't respond. She looked at the Doctor with anguish in her eyes. "Is he…" She couldn't get herself to finish the sentence. The Doctor shook his head.

"Stay with him."

He turned to Saxon, who now waved the laserscrewdriver from one prisoner to the other as he threatened the Doctor to kill them all if he came any closer. The Doctor stared at him with a stern expression on his face. "I'm sorry." He finally said, and swept the weapon out of his hands telekinetically. Unarmed, with his powers lost, and surrounded by his enemies, Saxon panicked.

"You can't do this! You can't do - it's not fair!" He raged.

The expression on the Doctor's face softened. "You know what happens now. You were reluctant to listen, because you knew what I was going to say."

"NO!" Saxon yelled, and stepped back as the Doctor approached. "No! no!" His brilliant mind now blank and captured in a state of fear and loathing of what was to come. He came to stand with his back against the wall, and curled into fetal position. When the Doctor looked down on him, it was only with great pity in his heart, but to his defeated enemy, this was more frightening than all the demons that came to visit him in the night.

The Doctor wrapped his arms around his whimpering fellow Timelord. "I forgive you." He spoke softly.

Instead of feeling any remorse, Saxon moved away from him, and warned his Toclefane army via the intercom. "My Children. Protect the paradox!" He ordered in desperation.

The Toclefanes obeyed. They repeated his order again and again till it sounded like a religious mantra as they descended upon the Valliant.

The Doctor let go of Saxon. "Captain, the paradox machine!"

Jack understood immediately, and turned to Saxon's men who were now back on their feet. Seeing that their ruthless master was finally defeated, they didn't hesitate to switch over to the other side. In this world of utter chaos, they were just content to follow the orders of any man who wasn't Harold Saxon for a change, and Jack was more than happy to take the lead. "You! Come with me! The paradox machine must be dismantled! The rest of you, stay here!" The men followed his orders.

The Master opened his eyes. He was pleased to see Donna sitting beside him. She gently caressed his face while a tear dripped down her chin.

"Hi there. You're back." She whispered.

The Master nodded, and grinned. "Didn't want to go anywhere without you."

Donna smiled through her tears. She just wanted to hug him tightly and plant a big smacker on his lips when Saxon hit her on her cheek with a flat hand, and pushed her aside.

"Sorry love. Have to borrow him for a while. Boys chat. You wouldn't be interested." He grabbed the Master by his arms and pulled him away from her. In his hand he had Martha's teleportation device.

Donna screamed, warning the Doctor who turned around. "No don't!" He yelled, and rushed toward them, but before he could stop him, Saxon activated the teleporter and both Masters disappeared in front of his eyes.

TBC