Time of Origin:
Earth, February 2001
“Escape Velocity” – “Timeless”. Left the TARDIS for a few months during the events of “Time Zero” and was briefly reunited with fellow companions Fitz and Trix in “The Gallifrey Chronicles”
Fitz Kreiner and Trix MacMillan
A stockbroker in the present, Anji first met the Eighth Doctor at the end of his century – long amnesic exile on 20th century Earth. at the time, she and her boyfriend, an actor and sci-fi – buff named Dave, had discovered a dying man with two hearts, and while Fitz Kreiner, waiting to meet The Doctor, had checked up on it to make sure it wasn’t him, Dave had been captured by an alien race called The Kulan. With only one chance, Fitz took Anji with him to meet The Doctor in London, on February 8th, 2001, in the St. Louis pub in London, owned by The Doctor himself, only to learn that The Doctor had no memory of his past (Following the traumatic events of “The Ancestor Cell”) and the TARDIS was still non-functional. Despite this, The Doctor agreed to help Anji find Dave, only for Dave to be killed in the escape attempt and Fitz being captured by the Kulan fleet. Fortunately, the TARDIS had restored itself when The Doctor and Anji returned to the St Louis, allowing them to get up onto the Kulan flagship and rescue Fitz, although Anji’s attempts to trick the Kulan into leaving resulted in the entire fleet blowing itself apart. Thankfully, The Doctor, Fitz and Anji managed to get off, but unfortunately for Anji, while The Doctor may have remembered the basics of who he is, he still didn’t know how to pilot the TARDIS; getting to the Kulan fleet was more luck than anything else, and he was doubtful about his ability to precisely return his ship to Earth in Anji’s present. Until further notice, she was his companion.
Generally, Anji was one of the many companions The Doctor had from approximately the current period of our time. (Other examples included Ian Chesterton form 1963, Jo Grant from 1971, Sarah Jane Smith from 1974, Tegan from 1979, Peri from 1982, Ace from 1986, and Sam from 1997) Like those, she managed to do fairly well in her travels with The Doctor, doing such things as shooting an incredibly deadly cyborg in the eye (“Hope”), fought off a madman intent on blowing up a city, (“Vanishing Point”) and help The Doctor and Fitz cope with a serious disruption to the fabric of reality. She did make a few mistakes, such as almost giving a complete nutcase the secrets of the TARDIS, but nothing that wasn’t very easily remedied. Although a competent companion, she fulfilled the traditional role of getting captured, being used as a hostage for such forces as a man/wasp hybrid, a rather unusual escort agency, and CIA agents, as well as being forced to deal with some particularly brutal racism in an alternate timeline.
Her relationship with The Doctor and Fitz was also difficult at times, sometimes finding it hard to reconcile Fitz’s faith in The Doctor with his actions. During one of her earliest adventures with The Doctor (“Eater of Wasps”), she reflected that he appeared almost dispassionate about the human lives lost when a dangerous bioweapon from the future began to mutate a man into a human/wasp hybrid life form, believing that he only got involved because he could rather than because he genuinely cared about people. However, as time went on she recognised that he did care about others – as made evident when he continued to appeal to the man/wasp hybrid’s humanity until he was certain the man it had been was dead – but simply avoided getting obviously emotionally involved because sometimes it was necessary; indeed, she once reflected that he reminded her of her father, whom she had grown apart from in recent years. This was particularly evident during the “Fractured Reality” crisis, when The Doctor was forced to sacrifice an innocent man to return to their home reality (“Reckless Engineering”), or when he allowed multiple alternate versions of himself, Fitz and Anji to die to restore the true reality (“The Last Resort”). Her relationship with Fitz, although occasionally punctuated by Fitz’s casual flirting, was generally friendly, with Anji sometimes relying on Fitz to provide a human perspective and some general information about their travels when The Doctor found it harder to relate to her.
Although not a traditional ‘shrinking violet’ by any stretch, Anji’s status as the TARDIS female played a prominent role on more than one occasion; a particularly notable adventure for her occurred when the TARDIS was drawn to Ceres Alpha by the telepathic cries of the resurrected children of ; seeking a mother figure, the telepathic cry of the children had been picked up by the TARDIS telepathic circuits and subsequently broadcast to Anji due to her being the closest thing to a mother they could find (“Dark Progeny”). Although of Indian ancestry, Anji had little real faith in religion, demonstrating a regularly effective knowledge of governments and politics due to her career as a stockbroker. Despite her knowledge of the system – as particularly demonstrated when she noted the economic benefits of prolonged war in “Anachrophobia” – Anji made it clear that she recognised the flaws in a system that focused on money over morality, briefly becoming excited at the prospect of shaping a new society that could escape the flaws of her own before The Doctor reminded her that they had no right to influence things on that scale (“The Crooked World”).
Throughout her time in the TARDIS, one of her most defining aspects of her personality was grief over Dave’s death, constantly wishing that she could have done something to save him. During her first adventure in the TARDIS, she spent much of her spare time composing imaginary e-mails to ‘send’ to him as a means of coping with her recent upheaval, although The Doctor later took her to a garden in the TARDIS to allow her to grieve once the crisis had passed (“Earthworld”). Anji’s grief over Dave’s death proved to be a particularly defining factor during their visit to the city of Hope, the TARDIS having sunk into a sea of acid forcing The Doctor to seek aid from the powerful and mysterious Silver to get it back. while The Doctor hunted for a mysterious killer in exchange for Silver’s services, Anji made her own deal with Silver; in exchange for scans of the TARDIS, so he could make his own versions of it and leave Hope, he would clone Dave from a hair sample so he could get a second chance at life. After The Doctor tracked down the killers – really the last remnants of humanity as it is presently known – the TARDIS was bought back up, and Anji scanned it for Silver. However, having created his clone, Silver revealed that he had never intended to revive Dave-II; he intended to keep the clone inactive to be used as a study sample and create his own species of cyborgs called Silverati, thanks to a chemical called Kallisti that he’d modified to allow humans to transform into cyborgs like himself and create a galaxy-conquering army. Although hurt, The Doctor refused to allow Anji’s betrayal to affect his trust in his companions, working with Anji to activate Dave-II and inject him with a smaller Kallisti that would only be temporary, simultaneously programming him to help them. While Dave distracted the Silverati, The Doctor and Anji confronted Silver, The Doctor stealing the chip containing the information from the TARDIS while Anji shot out Silver’s organic eye with a dart, Silver subsequently being trapped on a barren world. With the conclusion of this adventure, Anji felt more content, having ended the chapter of her life involving Dave.
Unfortunately, peace with the past didn’t solve Anji’s continued problems in the TARDIS. A particularly traumatic experience at this time featured Anji’s abduction by an escort agency that used drugs to brainwash their employees to literally become what the clients paid for, Anji hallucinating that she was being forced into a loveless marriage by an uncle; when she regained her wits, The Doctor actually had to lower a bulkhead in his temporarily-borrowed spaceship to stop her from killing the agency owners (“The Book of the Still”). Although she grew to enjoy the opportunities presented to her by the chance to travel with The Doctor, taking pleasure in the new experiences she gathered from her time with him, she eventually decided to leave after learning that The Doctor had essentially sent Fitz to die on an Arctic expedition in 1899 in order to preserve the Web of Time, The Doctor taking her back to her own time just a few weeks after she’d left (Her bosses allowing her the ‘time off’ as time she had needed in order to grieve for Dave’s death).
Despite this resolve, she ended up running into The Doctor and Fitz again when The Doctor was investigating the actions of his old enemy Sabbath at an auction that Anji’s company had sent her to attend, the subsequent disruption of reality causing the TARDIS to shift between various alternate realities, including a particularly challenging one where Anji was subjected to brutal racism as a result of the computer never being invented and advances in communication and transport never being achieved to encourage equality (“The Domino Effect”). Eventually, with reality having been stabilised – leaving The Doctor with only the immediate problem of finding Sabbath’s ‘superiors’ and restoring the possibility of alternate timelines to reality, even if the universe itself was now safe – Anji left the TARDIS crew and returned to her own time, with the latest crew member – Trix MacMillan, a con woman from her era – leaving her with adoption papers to a girl called Chloe – apparently a young surviving Time Lord who had been left trapped in the body of a little girl due to the destruction of Gallifrey.
She made a brief reappearance in “The Gallifrey Chronicles”, where it was revealed that she was engaged to a man named Greg – who knew about The Doctor, Fitz and Trix but hadn’t been told about her travels in time – was now on the board of her company, and had kept in touch with Trix even after her departure, Trix giving Anji stock tips based on her trips to the future while Anji placed a share of the money aside in an account for Trix ’s later use.