Azmael, sometimes called Azmeal, was the first High Chancellor and first true renegade Time Lord. He emigrated from Gallifrey to the planet Jaconda, where he ruled compassionately until Mestor deposed him.
Biography[edit | edit source]
Early life[edit | edit source]
Like all Time Lords, Azmael was taken from his family at the age of eight for the selection process in the Drylands. Staring into the Untempered Schism as part of a Time Lord initiation rite, Azmael reacted by running away from what he saw in the Schism. (PROSE: A Brief History of Time Lords) According to Postar the Perfidious' Scrolls of Gallifrey, this occurred very early in Time Lord history.
When Rassilon abdicated the Presidency of the Time Lords, the government was restructured on a more stable basis, and Azmeal became Chancellor to the new Lord President, Cardinal Pandad. The increasingly-secretive Rassilon took Azmeal into his confidence about the position of the Great Key to the Eye of Harmony, also decreeing that to make sure no Time Lord would ever both be in charge of Gallifrey's government and in power over the Eye, Azmeal could never be allowed to ascend to the rank of President, nor any other Chancellor after him.
Azmeal gained Rassilon's trust to such an extent that when the Founder discovered the twelve-regeneration limit when fruitlessly attempting his thirteenth regeneration, it was Azmeal whose help he enlisted to help with his last shot at immortality: Azmeal worked the machines as Rassilon's mind was the first full Gallifreyan intelligence to be uploaded into the Matrix.
However, following the Civil War between Pandad's Gallifrey and the rival presidency of Morbius, it was decreed that the Lord President and High Chancellor needed to belong to the same Chapter, to minimize friction. As Pandad's successor Helron was an Arcalian, Azmeal was put "out of a job". (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey)
Teaching at the Academy[edit | edit source]
He was not too displeased to lose his political position, as it freed his schedule to study the secrets of the Matrix which his master Rassilon had just barely begun to show him upon his death. (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey) He tutored the First Doctor at the Prydonian Academy. The Sixth Doctor considered him as the best one he ever had. (TV: The Twin Dilemma) They both held a great respect for one another. Azmael was present when the Doctor was expelled from the Academy. He was Coordinator at this time. (PROSE: Divided Loyalties)
At some point during the Doctor's fourth incarnation, the Doctor and Azmael had an encounter in which Azmael drank so much the Doctor had to throw him into a fountain to sober him up. (TV: The Twin Dilemma) As the Doctor lacked money, Azmael had to pay. (PROSE: The Twin Dilemma)
In his studies, Azmeal progressively discovered hints that the minds of the dead Time Lords were not static records of memories, but rather active as disembodied intelligences still guiding things from the shadows with Rassilon as their leader. Azmeal's growing influence over the Matrix, which they still did not understand themselves, led to Helron and his government planning to remove Helron from Gallifrey in his final incarnation, in forced retirement, as a way to stop him from studying it further. (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey) This was an offer which Professor Chronotis was the only Time Lord ever to actually accept. (PROSE: Shada)
Leaving Gallifrey[edit | edit source]
According to the Scrolls of Gallifrey, Azmeal left Gallifrey to escape Helron's goons and continue his experiments. (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey) By another account, he left for Vitrol Minor because he was merely tired of his life and wanted to make a fortune. Knowing that his knowledge and experience could be used against the Time Lords by their enemies, the High Council found him guilty of various fabricated charges in his absence and condemned to death, (PROSE: The Twin Dilemma) with Helron sending a warrior race (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey) of Seedle Warriors to execute him.
On Vitrol Minor the Seedle Warriors committed genocide, (PROSE: The Twin Dilemma) destroying the planet and its inhabitants to bring Azmeal back to Gallifrey for his trial. (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey) Azmael began his own legal proceedings against the Lord President and High Council in response; however, they bought witnesses and accused him of hiring the Seedle Warriors himself in a bid to gain exclusive rights to Vitrol Minor's minerals. Angered, Azmael shot down the High Council with a laser rifle, (PROSE: The Twin Dilemma) becoming the first official renegade Time Lord. (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey) Disgusted with what he had done, he left his homeworld once more. (PROSE: The Twin Dilemma) The next High Council cautiously allowed him to make his escape. (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey)
As the first of many Renegade Time Lords to formally renounce the values and laws of Gallifrey, Azmeal became an inspiration to a whole generation of young Time Lords at the Academy, including the Doctor, the Master, and the Rani, who deemed that Rassilon had been right to pronounce Time Lord society decadent upon his deathbed and that a change must be undergone. In turn, each of the three left Gallifrey, (PROSE: The Legacy of Gallifrey) as did others of their classmates, such as Drax and the Monk. (PROSE: Divided Loyalties)
On Jaconda[edit | edit source]
Azmael travelled for several years, earmarking Titan III in Maston Viva as a place to escape to should Seedle Warriors be sent after him once more, before settling on Jaconda where he was elected as their leader. Months after his election, the Gastropods attacked. To save the Jacondans, Azmael surrendered to Mestor. (PROSE: The Twin Dilemma)
Mester used a telepathic link with Azmael to dominate his mind. Mestor forced Azmael, who used the name Professor Bernard Edgeworth, (PROSE: The Twin Dilemma) to kidnap the two young genius identical twins Romulus and Remus Sylvest. By this time, Azmael had reached the end of his regeneration cycle.
Recently regenerated himself, the Sixth Doctor and Peri came to Titan III. There they saw the wreckage of a ship and rescued Lieutenant Hugo Lang. While exploring some tunnels on the asteroid, Peri and the Doctor were captured and taken to meet Azmael. The Doctor recognised Azmael as a friend from their homeworld of Gallifrey. Co-operating with Mestor to save his people, Azmael abandoned the Doctor and Peri, letting them be taken captive. However, when the Doctor and Peri were able to follow him to Jaconda. After being attacked by the Doctor due to post regeneration trauma, Azmael sided with the Doctor when his observations revealed Mestor's true plan to trigger a solar eruption that would destroy Jaconda and send Mestor's eggs out across the universe. When Mestor took possession of Azmael's body and the Doctor destroyed Mestor's real body, Azmael, with Mestor's consciousness within him, forced himself to die by attempting to regenerate. Since Azmael had already used all twelve of his regenerations, initiating a thirteenth regeneration resulted in both his and Mestor's deaths, which Mestor was unprepared for. (TV: The Twin Dilemma)
Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]
- Azmael debuted in The Twin Dilemma in 1984. The following years, the short story The Legacy of Gallifrey and the novelisation The Twin Dilemma independently adapted his backstory from that episode. These sources differ in several aspects, such as Azmael's motivation for leaving Gallifrey and the spelling of his name. These discrepancies may be explained by the attribution of The Legacy of Gallifrey to the writings of "Poster the Perfidious", although such a link has never been drawn in an in-universe source.