Clean-up on Aisle Two was the eleventh short story in the Short Trips anthology Short Trips: The Quality of Leadership. It was written by James Swallow. It featured the Seventh Doctor.


One night at the Nev-R-Close, the night manager Randall talks with a strange customer who calls himself Doctor. Two men, Skinhead and Dreadlock, enter the store to rob it. Randall wants to resist, knowing he will get in trouble, but the Doctor wants to keep everyone safe and tells him to let the men have what they want.

When the robbers discover there isn't much money in the cash register, they tell Randall to open the safe. He tells them he isn't able to open it, expecting his four employees to back him up, since he is their boss. To his surprise, they urge him to open the safe, caring more about their own safety.

A motorcyclist comes into the store, and Skinhead reflexively shoots him, thinking he's a cop. The Doctor convinces them to let him heal the man, so they won't have to worry about a murder charge.

While the Doctor and Randall are taking care of the man, the Doctor tells Randall that if he wants his employees' respect, he must earn it by showing them respect.

The robbers, having got the money from the safe and destroyed the security footage, are ready to leave. At the last minute they decide to take Lucy with them, despite the Doctor urging them not to. Randall stands up to them, saying that Lucy is a person with a life and that she, and his other employees, are worth a hundred of the two robbers. Dreadlock decides that they won't take her with them, then Skinhead smashes Randall's nose with his gun.

When Randall wakes up, he learns from the Doctor that they motorcyclist has been taken to the hospital and the two robbers have been arrested. He tries to thank the Doctor, but the Doctor left when he wasn't looking.

Over the next few days, Randall notices a difference in his employees: they now respect him and they call him "boss".




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