The Doctor took a step back. He took a step forward. Then he took a long, long look at the woman. "Wugh?" he began. Realising that this was not a real word - and a very undignified way to speak, especially if you were a 945 year old Time Lord, he tried again. "I'm sorry?" No answer. Elo was still smiling that faint, irritating smile. She had to be crazy.

Reaching into his pocket (it was zipped, still: she had not stolen anything from there! He harboured suspicions about the screwdriver's mysterious disappearance...) the Doctor pulled out a stethoscope. "I'm sorry about this," he said apologetically. "I just need to check something."

Frowning with concentration and confusion, he listened to her heartbeat. Normal. So she wasn't mad. What was she talking about, then?

"Don't worry, it's perfectly normal to go into shock in these situations," said Elo, smiling slightly. "I daresay Spook and Del will come back. They were probably just a little carried away."

"Spook..." he said. "I have a warrant for her arrest!" Now he remembered. "She has been plotting World Domination. By order of the Shadow Proclamation..."

But that had slipped his mind. What was happening? The Doctor never forgot anything. Even now his head was buzzing with a thousand memories, and his thoughts travelling along several lines at once. It was hard to keep track of conversations.

"This is a Class T planet," said Elo firmly.

"No, no, no, you've got it all wrong," he said, trying to appear in control of his own mind. "Any planet with intelligent lifeforms comes under one of four categories: A, B, C or D. I assume you are intelligent, anyway?"

"Oh, for goodness sake!" Elo grew bored of hearing him mutter, thinking it all through as he spoke. The Doctor tried to hide his smile. She was falling for his plan... "Here, have your stupid screwdriver. Zap your head if it helps."

"Thank you," he replied, trying to keep up the pretence of fuzziness. "I'm sure it will be very helpful. Because now, I can do this!"

He pointed the screwdriver at a patch of air and the HARDIS reappeared, shimmering slightly. Even Elo could see that it had changed. The paint was flaking off, the windows dirty ...

Whatever Spook and Del had been doing, it had been pretty major. She couldn't wait to hear their side of the story.

The door opened.

The End

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