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Artificial Intelligence was the fifth short story in the Short Trips anthology Short Trips: 2040. It was written by Andy Campbell. It featured the Fifth Doctor.


Imogen Quaye is a patient at the Lashley Institute. She has had an operation to improve her brain capacity, and one of the researchers, Susan Colman, convinces her to keep a diary.

Over the course of three weeks, her brain capacity increases dramatically. She can learn foreign languages with ease, she can read large amounts of material in a very short time, and her short term memory capacity soon becomes unmeasurable. She no longer needs to sleep; and, unknown to the researchers, she develops telepathy.

She has learned that her aunt sold her to the institute for 15 million euros. She has also hacked into the institute computer to learn more about the three associate researchers. Her arrogance in her abilities grows with her mental capacity.

One night after researcher Michael Skinner has annoyed her, she telepathically induces him to commit suicide. She follows this action several days later by doing the same to Colman, researcher Eugen Bliss, and her aunt.

Realising she is a monster, Imogen prepares to kill herself, but is startled to see a blue police box materialise in her room. A man comes out and introduces himself as the Doctor. He tells Imogen his TARDIS must have detected a similar intelligence to its own and brought him to Imogen. Imogen won't be talked out of suicide, thinking the Doctor cannot convince her to live. However, when he suggests that she use her mental powers to do some good, she is intrigued.

While they talk, Professor Donald Kelt, head of the institute, arrives. He tells Imogen that she won't be blamed for the suicides as long as she agrees to more testing. When she refuses, he threatens her, saying that all he has to do is turn on any of several mental illnesses that are present in her brain. At first she is frightened, then angry, and she destroys Kelt.

The Doctor helps her to realise her anger is gone, and after he leaves, she decides to use her abilities to help cure mental diseases.




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