Overlords of Forêt is the first trip back to Forêt for a while. To recap, The Doctor met and fell in love with Dominique, who was going to leave and travel with him until her brother was killed and she had to become village leader. The Doctor went back from time to time and enjoyed her company. He eventually returned after a break of 15 years to discover he has a son by Dominique. The son is part Time Lord, and telepathic, and he doesn’t bear any grudges against his absent father. Later, The Doctor decided he really ought to marry Dominique, but they still agreed to lead separate lives except when he can visit. They hade another child, Angeletta, and at that point, The Doctor decided he had to do right by Dominique. He lives on Forêt for thirty five years, until Dominique dies of old age. Meanwhile his children grow up and become parents themselves. He leaves after Dominique’s funeral, promising that he will visit his grandchildren in the future. This, of course, is the man who forgot to visit his first granddaughter who he left in the 22nd century!

Anyway, he takes Donna to Forêt after their shipwreck adventure, to see a place where it is possible to kick up leaves in autumn. They never actually do that, because almost as soon as they arrive they’re mixed up in a crisis.

Forêt is getting to be a very put upon community. They had Daleks when The Doctor first found them. Then there was an Earth mining company that wanted to oust the population. Then the space pirates led by the nasty Viturthin who wanted the men as slaves. For a peaceful people, they have a lot of troubles.

I gave a strong impression in ‘Paradise Lost’ that the women had been raped by the space pirates, but didn’t want to go into too much detail. In this story, it is more than strongly suggested that the Overlords who are forcing the men to work in the mines are taking advantage of the women in much the same way that invaders of all sorts will take advantage, either by force, or by persuasion. Louise, has ‘given’ herself to an Overlord in order to help get food for her family.

To recap again, Marcas, of course, was a brief travelling companion of The Doctor who decided to stay on Forêt with Inès, who he fell in love with during the previous invasion crisis. Louise is their daughter.

Science fiction fans will, of course, immediately point out that Louise having the alien baby strongly mirrors the character in the 1980s mini series, V, who also had a baby after a similar liaison with a ‘visitor’. Yes, absolutely admitted. I realised that when I decided to write in this part of the storyline. In this case, the child dies, despite The Doctor’s best efforts. But it’s DNA gives him the clue to stopping the Overlords from their evil work.

Of course, if this was anyone but The Doctor, the information would allow them to kill all the Overlords. But The Doctor doesn’t do genocide. Or at least he’s seen enough of it, thanks. His solution is a dramatic one, though. And one I probably wouldn’t have come up with if I hadn’t seen Journey’s End, the fabulously unlikely finale to the 2008 Season of Doctor Who. Having had the TARDIS tow the Earth back through the galaxy without a single tidal wave or earthquake, moving Forêt closer to its sun to temporarily heat up the weather was a doddle, especially with two TARDISes on the case. I decided to call in Nine to help mainly because I thought it would be useful to have him come up with the plan to protect Forêt from future attack by introducing them to some allies that Nine had met in the past.

I wrote this story shortly after David Tennant announced that he was leaving Doctor Who. I have always known he would, of course. And when it happens, I have a problem, because I can’t write more than two full length stories a week. It is just impossible. So it really is best if Ten retires when it is time to write Eleventh Doctor stories. That is still at least a year and a half away at time of writing, when the 2010 series arrives on screen. So I have time. But I decided a while back that I would not have Ten regenerate in these stories. He is, after all, living in an alternative universe to his TV version. Instead, my plan was for him to retire to Forêt and, we presume, live out his days in peace and harmony. So, yes, Louise is an incentive for him to return there. I will be returning to that possible romance in the future.