The large chamber was full of quiet. The Doctor looked from one Dalek to the next, quizzically analysing the mutant creatures. "You understand what that means?"
The lead Dalek moved towards the woman. "The Doctor is to assist. The female is to remain."
The light over the podium deactivated, hiding the woman. "Wait. I have a couple of conditions before we start this freaky partnership. Numero uno - since you lot clearly know that I don't do my best work alone, an accomplice would be good. You see what I'm getting at? Numero duo - a torch and a fan. Numero three, and this is the more important one." The Doctor weaved through the Daleks, tapping each on the casing lightly. "Numero three, you tell me what is going on."
The lights on top of the lead Dalek flashed, yet it said nothing. Another Dalek did the same, and another, until the Doctor realised what was going on. "You're talking to each other, but you don't want me to hear you. Oh how clever. Though if you're going to talk behind my back, it's only fair if I do the same."
He raced across the room, his screwdriver whirring. The woman on the podium jumped down to stand beside him. "So they'll be conspiring for a minute, that gives us plenty of time to catch up."
"Catch up?" She asked, reaching out to pinch his cheek. He recoiled before doing the same to her. "We don't know each other."
"I'm the Doctor," he said, offering his hand.
"I know that! I meant that I don't know this you." She took his hand and began a complicated handshake that she took great delight in when he didn't understand. "Scarlett."
"Well Scarlett, welcome to my past. And hello to my future. Awkward situation. So, ready to run?" His eyes lit up, blazing with adventure.
"You lead and I'll follow." She smiled, trusting this stranger.
The Daleks turned to face them both. "A Dalek has been chosen to accompany you, Doctor."
His eyes widened. "No, I meant..."
"Your meaning was understood. This is what has been decided." One approached the Doctor, stopping by his side.
"So just a minute ago, you were arguing over who would get to come with me? How adorable!" He shook the sucker on his companion Dalek excessively, winking at Scarlett.
A beam of light fell from the ceiling, forcing her to the floor. "And I take it I'm staying here?" Her voice was laced with sarcasm, but not surprise. "Cool. See you later, Doctor. Stay safe."
"Oh, you know me." They looked at each other and laughed. He walked away quickly, expecting his Dalek to keep pace.
"So, let's get me up to date. What's going on here?"
The Dalek trundled up to a door and opened it to reveal the surface of the planet. "A creature has escaped from our craft. It is dangerous. Previous attempts to capture it have failed."
The Doctor stopped, seconds before putting his foot on the alien soil. "You want me to deal with a Dalek predator? Something out here scares you like I do?"
He found himself looking straight into the eyestalk. The gun twitched uncomfortably. "You are to deal with the creature."
"If I can destroy armies of Daleks then I can deal with one of these things. You flatter me. Also, we need a name for you. If we're going to be... together." The Doctor stepped out onto the surface of Focii. "I'll call you Buttons. We could be the best of friends."
"You have been tasked with one mission. You are to focus on completion." The Dalek failed to make eye contact, instead progressing further into the mist.
"Then you kill me when I save you, yeah I know how this plays out. So much for BFFs." The Doctor stopped but Buttons carried on. It didn't look back at him, nor say anything. The Doctor tried to go back surreptitiously but the middle section of the Dalek swivelled around and the gun fired, hitting the ground immediately behind the Doctor. "No need to get nasty, I thought I heard something. It was nothing though. No need to worry, not that you would."
The two moved in silence, scanning the landscape. "You never told me what we're looking for. How will I know if I see it?"
"There are no other life forms on this planet. Anything seen is to be reported." The Dalek continued to look around them. "Immediacy of reports is necessary. The creature is a highly skilled predator. It will try to exterminate us."
"That's nice to know."