The Beginning (audio story)

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The Beginning was the fifth story of the eighth series in The Companion Chronicles audio range. It was produced by Big Finish Productions. It was written by Marc Platt and featured Susan.

It was the first story of a Companion Chronicles trilogy released by Big Finish Productions in November 2013January 2014 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the show. This trilogy was centred around the character of Quadrigger Stoyn introduced in this story and was continued with The Dying Light and Luna Romana. This story marks the maiden voyage of the Doctor inside a Type 40 TARDIS he chose to steal and the day both he and Susan fled from Gallifrey. For the Doctor, it was the moment he began what would inadvertently become an enormously long career of travelling through space and time. It also marked his first visit to the solar system and his first interaction with humans.

Publisher's summary[[edit]]

When the First Doctor and his granddaughter Susan escape through the cloisters of Gallifrey to an old Type 40 Time Travel capsule, little do they realise the adventures that lie ahead... And little do they know, as the TARDIS dematerialises and they leave their home world behind, there is someone else aboard the ship. He is Quadrigger Stoyn, and he is very unhappy...


The First Flight (1)[[edit]]

On Gallifrey, the First Doctor and Susan are being pursued by several armed guards through a TARDIS repair shop. As Susan hides in one of the TARDISes, she hears the Doctor talking to someone, prompting the Doctor and Susan to swap with another TARDIS. Determined to leave their home, the Doctor and Susan steal the faulty old TARDIS, although the Doctor has very limited knowledge on how to properly operate one.

Upon escaping Gallifrey, the TARDIS materialises in the Sol system, near a planet that Susan recognises as Earth. They soon realise, however, that their escape has completely depleted the TARDIS's faulty old engines, leaving them with seemingly no way home. They then realise that they are not alone on the TARDIS, as another Time Lord named Quadrigger Stoyn was also aboard the ship, taking apart the engine so that this TARDIS could be scrapped. Stoyn is upset at the Doctor and Susan for stealing the TARDIS with him aboard it, and is further distressed when the Doctor destroys the TARDIS's homing device so that the Time Lords cannot find them, leaving them stranded with no way to get home.

Despite Stoyn's protestations, the Doctor and Susan step outside to explore the planet — with the Doctor taking the TARDIS's dematerialisation circuit as insurance — finding it to be in its primeval era with only the most primitive forms of life. With Stoyn following them, the Doctor and Susan eventually find that the planet is indeed inhabited by a form of intelligent life: a race of glob-like beings called Archaeons.

One of the Archaeons, known simply as the First Propagator, welcomes the Doctor, Susan, and Stoyn, and shows great curiosity about them. The three of them are led to an enormous cavern housing a strange cannon-like device that shoots red lightning at the planet's moon, seeding life on it. When the Doctor realises that they are interfering with the development of this planet's life he immediately protests, an action that the Archaeons consider to be heresy. As this goes on, the Archaeons begin disassembling the TARDIS, causing the stasis field to destabilise, forming a breach in space and time.

Red Lightning (2)[[edit]]

Susan awakes to find herself in a hospital run by humans, where she learns that she was found in a 450 million year old archaeological dig site. As she is being questioned, she can faintly hear the Doctor's voice coming from somewhere. She eventually realises that the she is on Earth's moon, and the Archaeons had actually been seeding life on Earth itself.

While being transported to the nearby Giant Leap Base, Stoyn mentally projects himself to Susan, claiming that he's trying to bring her and her grandfather back, but Susan does not believe him and refuses to cooperate. Stoyn is then interrupted as the lunar rover that Susan is being transported on is assaulted by red lightning, like the kind the Archaeons were using. Eventually Susan finds that the Doctor is in the next bed over from her. After waking him up, she explores the rest of the lunar rover only to find that the crew are all dead, killed by some sort of strange parasites.

As the Doctor tries to make sense of this all, he realises that the stasis field must have frozen him and Susan in time until they were recovered by the human archaeologists. Stoyn manages to get in touch with them once more through the rover's communication devices, telling them that they need to come back and that the Archaeons are very angry with them for ruining their experiment. The Doctor attempts to warn the humans back at the moon base, but the link is cut off by more of the red lightning, knocking out the power at the base.

While the Doctor and Susan contemplate their next move, they are again contacted by Stoyn, who pleads with them to come back so they can all escape, but the Doctor refuses. Eventually they are taken back to the cavern by the Archaeons by force. Upon returning, the Doctor congratulates the Archaeons on creating such a beautiful world full of vibrant life. However, the First Propagator says that their experiment was a failure due to their interference and as a result Earth has become a disorderly mess of chaos. With Stoyn's testimony against them, the Archeaons lay the blame of their failed experiment on the Doctor and Susan and decide to purge the Earth.

As the Archaeons fire upon Earth, Stoyn leads the Doctor and Susan back to the TARDIS, its engines now fully regenerated, where he tries to convince the Doctor to give him the dematerialisation circuit. As they argue, they come to realise that the humans are launching a retaliatory missile strike at the Archaeons. The Archaeons' power begins to fail, at which point the Doctor decides to help them, thinking that the Time Lords will look more favourably upon them for restoring order when they catch up with them. The Doctor and Stoyn convince the Archaeons to let them use the TARDIS to power up their systems. When the Doctor refuses to turn the dematerialisation circuit over to Stoyn, he takes Susan as his hostage, offering to take her with him in the TARDIS, leaving the Doctor to face judgement at the hands of the Archaeons. As the Archaeons prepare to resume their bombardment, the Doctor cuts the cable, leaving the Archaeons defenceless. Susan gets away from Stoyn and runs back into the TARDIS where they close the doors on him. Stoyn begs to be let into the TARDIS, but both the Doctor and Susan decide it best to leave him behind. Stoyn vows to get his revenge on the Doctor.

As the TARDIS dematerialises, the Doctor and Susan see that the Archaeons' weapon has been destroyed by a direct hit from the humans, leaving them defenceless. Still impressed by the Earth and its history, the Doctor attempts to make the TARDIS take them back to Earth. Instead, they end up on an alien planet, causing the Doctor, in his excitement, to forget all about Earth at the moment.






  • This story was recorded on 17 July 2012 at the Moat Studios.
  • This is the first in a trilogy of three stories exploring the character of Quadringer Stoyn. It was released in November 2013, in celebration of the programme's 50th anniversary.
  • The original cover of the audio put up on the Big Finish website illustrated the Doctor's TARDIS' original form as a pyramid, in-line with the Doctor and Susan's exit from Gallifrey in Lungbarrow. The image was altered after The Name of the Doctor, with the pyramid replaced with that episode's depiction of the ship's natural form.
  • In a behind the scenes interview included on the CD, Marc Platt cites the television story The Doctor's Wife as an influence in characterising the Doctor's love towards the TARDIS, and its own authority. This story was Platt's third time writing the Doctor and Susan's escape from Gallifrey, following Lungbarrow and Auld Mortality, with Platt intending this version to draw on different, newer sources than his previous versions, offering a new possibility.
  • Given that the TARDIS' chameleon circuit is operational, this is one of the few Doctor Who stories in any medium in which the TARDIS appears in a form other than that of a police box.
  • Susan refers to herself as "Susan" and her grandfather as "the Doctor", in-line with the prior Platt stories Lungbarrow and Auld Mortality. This contradicts PROSE: Frayed, which tells another version of the Doctor and Susan's early adventures which establishes them assuming those names as aliases.
  • This story was available as a free download on Big Finish's website from 13-20 April 2020[1].
  • This story is known to take place between The Exiles and Frayed.
  • This story was released on BBC Sounds on 15 November 2023 as part of the 60th anniversary celebrations of Doctor Who, under the banner title of Doctor Who: The Audio Adventures.[2] Coincidentally, this was on the tenth anniversary of its release.


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