The British government has turned to Dr Who to help carry out flights of 'extraordinary rendition', in the light of massive back-logs caused by current cycle of BA strikes. Whilst a large number of such flights are usually carried out on privately chartered planes, British Airways is often used to facilitate a less suspicious paper trail, and to use up the airmiles accrued by minisiters using their nectar cards. The government had attempted to contract Ryan-Air, but the budget airline refused to remove a default ‘terrorism assistance’ levy, and would only fly to Dusseldorf . As a result, The Doctor is to begin facilitating the removal and systematic torture of terror suspects as of the Tuesday 2nd July.
‘With the eyes of the nation and the aviation world firmly fixed upon the UK ,’ said a senior civil servant within the Home Office, ‘it just isn’t possible to get people in and out without noticing. Furthermore, the queues at Heathrow are a nightmare and taking an age to clear the backlog really isn’t an option this time; we really can't afford to miss our targets two quarters in a row. So getting The Doctor involved works on two levels – firstly we can take them anywhere in the known multi-verse and not worry about looking a bit dodgy, and secondly, he can ostensibly drop everyone off just after he took them away. Which should certainly stop us having to answer any awkward questions!’
It is believed that the move will also help to alleviate the professional difficulties raised by long delays. ‘The people can be terribly anxious when they are waiting to be tortured,’ continued the source. ‘They have a tendency to just sit and bite their nails; which from a professional point of view is difficult because it means they’ve less to pull out! Plus, they can be terribly dreary and it can get a little awkward as there is no common ground for conversation; sometimes it can be like pulling teeth!’
The Home Office also claim that the use of the nation's favourite Time Lord is a responsible use of tax-payer's money, on the grounds that 'whilst an expensive alternative to normal working practices, using The Doctor is considerably cheaper than using BA-owned facilities for temporary detention because only the 'Executive Business' rooms at Heathrow terminals have the facilities to chain people up.' In addition, it is hoped that negating the need for operatives and detainees to wait in an unsecure location where boredom is risk-factor may reduce the chances of embarrassing lapses of security, following an incident in which a prisoner ran off and hid behind a stack of Toblerones in duty-free, and another detainee was allowed to escape when he tricked an operative into a game of ‘cats-cradle’ using handcuffs.
Unsurprisingly, the news has come as a shock to The Doctor’s followers, who had previously considered the erstwhile time-traveler incorruptible and certainly not one for supporting torture. However, The Doctor stated that whilst ‘I’m not condoning the use of force to extract information, sometimes you have to accept that just asking the question a few times and threatening people with a glowing screwdriver isn’t enough. Plus, the Tardis doesn’t just run on the power of the Time Vortex anymore, you know? Bloody austerity measures meant I had to have it converted because it was wasting too much time. And biofuel isn’t cheap! So, as long as I get the money, they don’t get in the way and at least one of them is worth a shufty, then I’m game! But I’m not bringing the Daleks, no matter how good they are for this kind of job! They are messy, rude and they never flush the toilet!’
Unite, the union representing the striking BA workers, is also unhappy at the move as it means the loss of contracted work for which the crew are trained and for which they would otherwise have received considerable bonuses. Tony Woodley, joint leader of the union stated that 'BA cabin crew usually form an integral part of the initial phases of torture. They are specially trained to create an atmosphere of fear and isolation by exhibiting dispassionate, unreachably dead-eyes, whilst simultaneously talking in an agonisingly chirpy voice; the contrast is quite unnerving and causes high levels of distress. They are also trained so that they instantly forget to bring you what you orderered, or in special cases, deliberately bring the wrong thing. By the time the time we have deliberatley misplaced the passengers' luggage, they are so exhausted by anger that they'd tell you anything you want for a good cup of coffee and a muffin.'
The contract is expected to expire following a resolution of the current situation, but it is unlikely to be the last time Dr Who takes on contracted or corporate work. It is rumoured that the Time Lord is currently in negotiations with the board of Virgin over space tourism proposals and the possiblility of having Richard Branson placed into permanent geostationary orbit around the Earth.