The Doctor blinked, and opened his eyes. He felt a little dizzy, if he was being honest with himself. Transmat. Couldn't be helped.
"Oh," he said. "Oh this is… different."
He was standing on a stage, in a grand hall. At his left stood a group of Zagrites in armour, wearing medallions and wielding swords – ceremonial most likely. On his right, stood Gantorastkaltre, who was kneeling.
"Behold!" he yelled. "The angel! The Ka Faraq Gatri!"
The Doctor looked out beyond the stage. Sontarans he saw, though only two or three. A few Drahvins. Ice Warriors. Raxacoricofallapatorians. But mainly, dressed in the shining silver armour of the holiest of Zagrite crusaders, twenty thousand (at a guess) Zagrite soldiers, who were kneeling before him.
"Behold the Doctor!" Gantoraskaltre called.
"Behold the Doctor! Behold the Doctor! Behold the Doctor!" the legions chanted.
And the Doctor looked out upon the might of the holy Zagrite fleet, which had assembled for the end times that they knew were to come soon, and as he looked out upon their might, he knew pride and love for his followers, the followers of the angels of time itself…
The Brigadier had been the one to take charge in the panic that had followed. He had bellowed for quiet as the entire command centre of UNIT panicked, Carrie included.
"Most likely," he said to the assembled group, "the aliens have teleported or transmatted him to their command ship. He deals with this sort of thing all the time. He'll be fine."
"Are you sure?" Carrie said. "He is a bit… ditzy…"
"I'm more worried about us," Strand said. "If the Doctor is absent, we have no way of defending ourselves from anything."
"Sir," McKenzie said, coming up to him. "We have our forces assembled at the chosen field. We've equipped them all with standard issue alien-fighter ammo."
"You'll have to forgive an old man, Strand," the Brigadier cut in, "but what in blazes is that?"
"Alien fighter ammo is harder, faster ammunition," the Colonel replied. "Designed to punch through stronger armour that aliens seem to prefer."
"So, Alien menaces are no longer immune to bullets?" the Brigadier asked.
"That's the general theory," Strand said. "They've never been tested."
"Well," the Brigadier smiled. "Now is the perfect time to, wouldn't you agree?"
Strand smiled back.
"Oh yes sir," he replied with a salute. "Most definitely. McKenzie, Davison, with me! We're going down to the field. Cassie, stay with Sir Alastair and the Doctor's companion…"
"What?" Carrie said. "I'm coming with you!"
The Brigadier rolled his eyes.
"He always picks the same type," he muttered. "Miss Wright, if I might ask, have you ever been in a battle?"
Carrie looked at the Brigadier, and slowly shook her head, wondering where he was going with this.
"Well I have," the Brigadier said. "And you don't want to be there, I can promise you. The sheer stench of battle, the smoke, the flames, the corpses – sometimes they burn, Miss Wright," he continued, shuddering himself slightly, as Carrie's eyes widened. "It is a horrible place to be. And seeing men die, as well." A haunted look came into the Brigadier's eyes. "I've written to mothers expressing sorrow at the death of their sons, but I cannot tell them how or why they died.; how do you tell Jacob Tamm's mother that he died fighting an alien mass of tentacles and that she can't have his body back because he was disintegrated?" he asked her. "Or Carl Lewis's father, a man who's served in wars; how can you write to him and say, your son was murdered by a walking shop window dummy?"
Carrie's eyes watered as he spoke, the horror he spoke of filling her with sorrow and pity.
"Often, I have wished I could say, 'stay behind' to the Doctor's companions, because they don't know what they're going for," the Brigadier said. "He picks brave young women, and brave young men for his friends. But when he is not around, I make judgements. You will not go. You will remain."
Carrie sat down, looking unhappy but accepting. The Brigadier looked at Strand, and saluted. Strand saluted back, as did Davison and McKenzie, and then they marched out, heads held high.
"But but but but…" the Ka Faraq Gatri said, looking flustered (if one could apply Zagrite emotions to higher beings), "I'm not an angel!"
The High Speaker smiled indulgently – 'the truly divine is humble and meek, until called upon to fight'; another tenet of Zagrite theology.
"Perhaps not on your own plain, my liege," he said, "but what you have done against the demons is simply divine by nature. You cannot deny your achievements!"
"What demons?" the Oncoming Storm asked, looking worried.
"Why, the achievement of battling the leader of the demons in his own palace!" the Zagrite said, recounting the tale in his own mind for pure joy. "The victory against the invisible demons of the Jungle worlds, the legions of demons you have slaughtered, even those made from the profaned bodies of the dead!"
The Doctor knew what Gantoraskaltre was talking about. He wished he didn't. He really wished he didn't. He wished that it was all a joke.
But the Demons of the Zagrites were the Daleks.